The Lung Brothers

Hanging out at the extreme end of the long tail ...

Monday, January 31, 2005

Monday Rant Part: II

Spanish food is good. I mean really good. Even in the most modest of Iberian households they think about their food and choose the raw materials with great love and care, first looking at quality and then price. Healthy and delicious olive oil is used to cook or season practically everything on the table, and their market vegetables although smaller and uglier than their genetically modified counterparts, do actually taste of something.

Sadly, the modern world being what it is, I doubt if this care and attention to a quality diet will last for more than another generation.

Unlike their Latin American cousins and contrary to popular belief, the Spanish don’t generally go for hot or spicy food. It’s viewed with suspicion as a way of covering up the poor quality of meat and vegetables. It’s incredible how wussy our local friends get whenever we go out for any kind of eastern food, their palettes never having acquired the healthy, leathery texture of the seasoned curry muncher.

Now, the exception proving the rule, there is one popular Spanish dish that I just don’t understand at all. Disgusting, insipid gruel unfit for a dockland slop house. I refer to cold white asparagus served with……wait for it….mayonnaise. Now, taste apart, lets look into this succulent starter in the context of a full sensory experience.

The porcelain plate arrives adorned with half a dozen thick stems of asparagus with a fine blob of creamy mayonnaise on top. White on white on white, an appetising sight if you happen to be a colour-blind, anaemic albino. You then sink your knife into the aqueous vegetable and release a large puddle of water into which the mayonnaise falls and immediately clots. If the asparagus is firm enough to be skewered by a fork, you might actually get it into your mouth on the first try instead of letting it fall back onto the puddly plate causing a splash that makes it look like someone just jacked off onto your tie.

Then after chewing this mass of sloppy fibre for five minutes, your mouth desperately trying to emulsify all that mayonnaise, you manage to swallow without gagging.

Jesus, if only you’d ordered the jellyfish with yogurt like I told you.

Thursday, January 27, 2005


A conversation snippet between Lung the Elder and my good self over curry and beers yesterday evening:

LtE: ….how can I explain this? Look, do you know much about quantum physics?

LtY: Ha! How many dates have you completely blown using that line?

LtE. An indeterminate number.

LtY: Touché

CS usually insists in coming along to our nights out from a feeling of pure FOMS*. When she does, she usually has to put up with our awful jokes, our obscure references, our understatement (a word which doesn’t really translate to Spanish for obvious reasons) and our pseudo-intellectual ramblings.
At these times I can only imagine that she must be feeling a mixture of relief that we’re not going to strip clubs, boredom of the type that all girls feel around nerds and frustration that she didn’t just stay at home with a good book.

(* Fear Of Missing Something)

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Random musings (sampled)

Making your cat dance with you on its hind legs is a lot like sex with a prostitute. You know it’s wrong, but you keep trying to convince yourself that she’s enjoying it, too.

(Sadly, not my own, but worth sharing)

Rules of Thumb..

You should immediately switch off a blog forever when:

…..when you come across more than three references to technical gadgetry that you don’t understand.

…..when you read a long, humourless description of something like a girls night out where absolutely nothing remotely interesting or wild happens.

…..when the amount of times that the words ‘I’ and ‘me’ appear, outnumber the sentences in the entry.

…..when you encounter those diabetically sugary photographs of cats or stuffed animals.

….when the blogger uses syntax as if he or she were texting someone with an outdated cellular brick.

….when there is so much background colour that you can’t actually make out the text.

….teenage poetry.

You should immediately get hooked on a blog when:

….when it tells you something interesting that you didn’t know.

….when it shares and reaffirms your narrow political viewpoint.

…..when it can make something uneventful and banal (a girls night out for instance) seem absolutely hilarious.

…..when you actually get all it's geeky and obscure references.

….tempting links.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

The Third Lung

Well, we set this damn blog up, so I suppose we now have to feed it on a regular basis. It would seem that my cyber ambitions signed a few cheques that my daily routine can’t cash.

Last week was an amusing week all the same. We now have confirmation that the wee package that CS is carrying around in her belly is, in fact, male. This is the latest in the series of shocks that the whole process has given me. It’s curious that the most normal and predictable things about the various steps of the pregnancy have taken me completely by surprise. The results of CS’s first echography caused me to jump back with amazement and exclaim ‘My God, it’s got a head!’. The first time our obstetrician put the microphone to her belly - ‘Jesus, that’s its heart...and it’s beating!’ And last week found me stating to our ever-patient echographer ‘Holy cow, it’s got genitals!’ I admire CS’s restraint in resisting the urge to slap me upside my dumbass head during these epiphanies. As she wisely and patiently points out to me that if one of the aforementioned were not true, ‘that’ would have been the big surprise. She does have a point and, as always, the last word.

So we now have to get down to the grim task of deciding what we’re going to call the impending little feller. A process of elimination would seem to be one of the easiest ways to go about it. We need a name that will work in both cultures so Eusebio, Gonzalo and Rodrigo are just as out of the question as Finbarr, Liam and Brian. Nothing too biblical, nothing too obscure, nothing too exotic, but at the same time it would be a pity to shackle the tyke with something really bland and common for the rest of his life.

Anyway, I made a promise not to turn this into a baby blog, so on with other geek issues.

Lung the Elder and myself, hooked up this week in our little bodega for a brace of beers and a good bitch about the state of the world. We were joined, as we often are by Manny, another gringo living in Barcelona who shares our sense of beer-soaked outrage. On these occasions I generally take a back seat and let the boys vent their spleens against the Bush administration. They’re better informed than I am for one thing and it’s also their country, so I figure they have more of a claim on being pissed off than I do, no matter how much Chomsky I’ve read.

Conclusions from our evening of rants and belches:

- The Bush Junior is trying to do in the Middle East what his Daddy and Reagan did in Central America during the eighties. This has been confirmed by the amount of staff he has sent out there that are ex-Central American operatives.

- The term ‘Middle Eastern Block’ should be used for all the countries that Bush has invaded and will presently invade in that region. It will be similar to the Eastern Block of the cold war but with a different occupying force and less availability of potent alcohol.

- ‘We’ve got to support the troops’ is one sad-assed excuse for not opposing the war.

- If Bush were here at our table, despite his liquor qualifications, we’d STILL drink his ass under the table.

- The chorizo Iberico in the little bodega kicks ass.

- We’d better get home before our wives/girlfriends kill us.

As you can surmise, the topics upon which we all agreed became decidedly less cerebral as the evening progressed. This is not an uncommon occurrence.

We’ll just have to see what pearls of wisdom this week’s gathering produces.

Me Lung, You Jane

Sometimes when I do something socially awkward, I understand the whole Tarzan/Lord Greystoke thing. Except in my case, they shrug and say "Poor devil. He was found and raised by Catholics, you know ..."

A good example of a Catholic Tarzan moment? Apologizing for feeling guilty about being happy ...

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Random Morsel

If the epileptic fits, wear it!

Monday, January 17, 2005

It falleth as the gentle rain from Heaven onto the Earth beneath...

You know, every now and then it's good to turn your computer keyboard upside down and shake it, just to see the microscopic bits of unspeakable things fall out. It's the office equivalent of sticking your hand down the back of the cushions on your sofa.

Friday, January 14, 2005


Well it’s my birthday today. Yippy bloody skip.

It occurred to me that my age has just gone from a highly factorable number with seven, yes seven factors to a prime number. And that two of the factors are square roots.

I wonder if the Chinese or the numerologists (or the Chinese numerologists for that matter) would consider this transition as a sign of good luck or an omen of doom. I suppose that when I went from 31 to 32 a similar process happened but in reverse i.e. I went from a prime number to a highly factored number. That was the year 2000 and I honestly don’t remember it being either a particularly good or bad year in my life.

Another curious fact is that I have exactly the same birthday as my girlfriend’s father and one of her best friends. If Freud had been a astrologist, he would have rubbed his hands with glee at upon hearing that little nugget of information.

Does it all mean something? Is there some kind of holistic significance or serendipity at work here?.......................You know, it would probably tickle my boss pink if he knew how I wile away the working day pondering such cosmically important issues.

Thursday, January 13, 2005


Forgive me. Forgive me. For I have been a neglectful little blogeroo. In order for lungs to work, they must exhale once in a while and this breath of fresh text is long overdue.

You see we went back to the Auld Sod for Christmas where I was promptly laid low with the flu and was thus able to enjoy the full sensory experience of a real Irish homecoming. Needless to say, sweating, shivering and coughing in bed did not get my creative juices flowing, so not a keyboard did I caress during the stay at my folks house.

While over there, my larynx did manage to stop manufacturing phlegm long enough for me to drop the big news on my family that CS and I are going to be parents. The moment of truth was caught on video and all, most dramatic. He or she will be the first of its generation in both families so the little bugger is going to get lavished with more attention than Paris Hilton.

Now I know what you’re thinking. This is going to end up being one of those ‘we’re-having-a-baby’ blogs. But fear not, for although it is true that I’ll have to put off a couple of personal projects (polar expedition, cure for cancer etc.), I do promise that there will be no future talk of epidurals, snot pumps or green-hued caca .There’s well enough baby talk in blogland without me dumping my two cents worth there as well.

It is also worth remembering that this is a shared blog and Lung Brother Nº. 1 (or Lung the Elder as he’s known to his friends and chiropractors) can always be counted on to give a version of his fancy free life of leisure, unfettered by offspring or the like.