Oysters, Pistols and Tipsy Walking in New Orleans

October is a very big month for me, both personally and professionally, and we celebrated some seriously huge milestones this past month. In fact, we were so busy celebrating them, that I didn’t even have time to write about them! So just consider this the first in a three-part series. Or something.

First up was the birthday of my manpanion-for-life, XFE. We don’t usually travel for XFE’s birthday, what with Porktober® and all that being right around the corner. BUT, we decided to jump on some low fares and cash in some Starwood points for a quick weekend trip.

So, we went to New Orleans and acted like we were about 15 years younger than either of us are. We stayed up late, drank too much, ate too much, talked to random strangers, bought expensive artwork.

It's entirely appropriate to make finger pistols when buying artwork.
It’s entirely appropriate to make finger pistols when buying artwork.

Yeah, a little souvenir for my new office and to commemorate my first year of self-employment.

We saw this subtle little work of art while walking by the Hall Barnett Gallery on Chartres Street. They’re an LED reproduction of a neon piece called “Guns.” Supposedly, there were only three produced—one owned by the gallery owner, Holly, another owned by a couple in New York and then us.

They were absolutely unnecessary, but we just couldn’t walk away from them. I mean…neon guns? Hello? And they change colors! There’s even a remote control. We negotiated them down a teeny bit, but the final number still made me need a stiff drink afterwards.

(Update: They were damaged during shipping, so now we’re waiting for a new set. Or is it pair? Fingers crossed. Or is it guns crossed?)

Boo. Hiss.
Boo. Hiss.

Luckily, we were staying right across the street from the gallery at the W French Quarter. This is the infamous hotel where I cracked my head open five years ago. Actually, almost five years to the day. I know this because that super helpful Memories feature on Facebook popped up with that FrankenPoe picture right before we left.

Honestly, none of this is cute. The pout, the bags under the eyes, the airport bathroom stall. Oh, or the stitches.
Honestly, none of this is cute. The pout, the bags under the eyes, the airport bathroom stall. Oh, or the stitches.

Besides slippery dangerous showers, the W French Quarter is also home to SoBou, which is a Brennan’s establishment and therefore means: 25 cent martinis at lunch. (Note: if you ever do go this option—and you absolutely should—do not get one of the Kool-Aid colored/flavored pre-mixed martinis like a Cosmo. Get a classic, dirty martini).

I will say, we had a few issues with the W Hotel this time out. We were using points, cash and upgrades to cover our three-night stay, and they basically wanted us to move rooms each night. There was much finagling until they finally upgraded us to a carriage house studio type room that had definitely seen better days and had a non-working hot tub surrounded by cigarette butts on the patio.

W New Orleans Collage

The concierge also dropped the ball on the champagne I had ordered, despite the fact that I had filled out all the paperwork and called twice to order it and confirm that it would be in our room. There’s a whole litany of other annoyances (including XFE’s pet peeve: old, snagged towels with threads hanging everywhere), but, at least no one ended up in the emergency room, so that’s a half-hearted win. Sorry, W French Quarter.

We fared better in the eating category. On our first day we did a very scientific comparison/survey of two famous oyster places: Felix and Acme. We ate approximately four dozen oysters between the two places—raw, grilled and Bienville. XFE joked that we should have been pooping pearls after all that. Final consensus: Acme won by a shell sliver and honestly, it was their boo fries that had us coming back again the two days later (French fries covered with roast beef gravy and cheese).

Let's see, from left to right: oysters, oyster place, oysters, and oyster place.
Let’s see, from left to right: oysters, oyster place, oysters, and oyster place.

When we returned to Acme, we were not alone. We dragged along a couple of new friends we met during what was perhaps our very favorite tourist activity ever: the Drink and Learn Tour. We’ve been on a lot of tours in a lot of places, but this particular tour was hands down the best tour we’ve ever been on (and….didn’t take any pictures of. What can I say? I was too busy enjoying it).

The owner/tour guide, Elizabeth Pearce is a drink historian, fantastic historian, and an all-around hoot. You meet up (at a bar, naturally) and you receive a small, crossbody cooler containing four color-coded drinks. Then you take a short walk, stop, take a sip of your drink, and learn about the colorful history of New Orleans through adult beverages. Everything from how and why rum punch represents the early melting-pot days of the Crescent City to how praline liquor helped female slaves buy their freedom. It was so entertaining and we both learned a ton.

Then we went and got oysters and beer because that’s what you do in New Orleans. Or at least, that’s what we do there.*

(*We did a bunch of other galivanting and tomfoolery, but this is a family blog, so better left unsaid.)

New Orleans Collage

Friday Links: Bunnies and Breaking Bad Edition

My bosses have been out this week. By bosses, I mean my editor, who’s on vacation this week and next. And my lifestyle-coordinator-manager XFE. He’s abandoned me for a cross-country golf trip with his dad to celebrate Senior XFE’s retirement.

This means I have to single-handedly run a multimedia information empire (hey, we post videos sometimes), and attend the approximately bazillion meetings that my work boss attends (including meetings to discuss work products that cannot be worked on because of mandatory attendance at said meetings where we discuss the potential work products that can someday be worked on if one is not in meetings.)

Literally, one of my notes from a recent meeting suggests we take a Facebook poll on which filter to use on an Instagram of our forthcoming infographic, and then write an online story about the poll results, which we should then pin via our association Pinterest account and reblog on our campaign/initiative’s Tumblr. Obviously, tweeting from our various Twitter accounts along the way. It was all very META. And hopefully, a joke.

Wait, what was I saying? Oh yes, not only am I booty-cheek deep in all that outlined above, BUT, I also have to care for and feed myself this week, including setting my own alarm, which I failed to do this morning. (And also, feed and care for my chubby cat. But really, that’s just a footnote.)

As a result of managing my own life in both a professional and personal sense, I am quite the tired bunny. In fact, I’m such a tired bunny, I stole this gif of a tired worker bunny from this Texan, who is a freaking hilarious genius.


Every time I’ve felt stressed out the last couple of days, I’ve looked at that gif. It slays me.

Here’s some other things from around the InterWebs that have helped me get through the week.

  • In honor of Shark Week, a video of a dissection of a Mako shark. Spoiler alert: his last meal was a 200-pound seal.
  • I feel like every year, just as Porktober is poking its pointy pink ears up over the horizon, there’s a story warning about bacon shortages. Here’s this year’s. And now I’m going to be obssessed about Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus. Awesome.
  • The Duggars better watch out. Deadbeat dad Orlando Shaw, who has 22 kids from 14 different women, says he’s got a reality show in the works. I dunno, if they couldn’t get All My Babies’ Mamas made, what chance does this guy have?
  • I hate WalMart and I love libraries. We need more of this.
  • Sephora is nirvana and I run around like an insane person who’s never been exposed to toiletry products every time I go in there. Which is why I try to order online instead.
  • Did you know there are an estimated 23,000 nuclear weapons in the world? That and other world enders are outlined in this terrifying infographic. Might as well hit up the casino (casino.org produced the infographic. No subtlety there.)
  • And finally, the most amazing thing in the history of ever (in just six minutes): a middle school musical version of Breaking Bad. These kids deserve an Emmy. Or, at least, a trip to Comic-Con next year.

Thanks for the Memories, Glitsy: Porktober 2012

*Let me start by apologizing for the photos. I was very lackadaisical about taking pictures, so I stole the majority of these from other people, so there’s some variance in terms of size, especially.

There was a crime at this weekend’s Porktober. A crime against humanity. Someone ate all of the mozzarella out of the caprese salad, leaving only the cherry tomatoes.

I’m serious! What kind of person does that?? It is the great mystery of Porktober 2012, which is finally in the record books. And what an event it was. It far surpassed last year’s event, both in number of attendees and just general over-the-topness.

Porktober logo
That is the Porktober logo projected onto the house next door. That’s how we roll.

We went to our local butcher, Let’s Meat on the Avenue (see what he did there? “Meat” instead of “meet??” He’s Australian and very clever, obviously).

Del Ray butcher, Let's Meat on the Avenue

Our butcher Steve brought out our little piggy, which I named Glitsy after the pet pig on Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, a fine piece of television art which I very much enjoy. (And that’s their spelling of Glitsy. I know there’s supposed to be a “z” in glitz.)

Del Ray butcher, Let's Meat on the Avenue

After a night on ice in my bathtub, Glitsy went to the XFE beauty parlor where she got a makeover from XFE and one of our event co-hosts, Leland (husband of former running-buddy Amy).

Prepping the Porktober pig

But she still needed a tan, so over the coals she went.

Prepping the Porktober pig

Guests started showing up at 3:30 and the drinking began. People brought loads of drinks, including the intriguingly named Fireballs (some sort of cinnamon whiskey, I believe.) and a punch involving apple cider, Captain Morgan’s run and Goldschlager.

The pig took about 9 hours to roast, so we made sure we had lots of other snacks on hand, including about 12 pounds of bacon, pigs in a blanket, and something that co-host Kevin called “atomic buffalo balls,” which involved green chiles stuffed with sausage, cheese and wrapped in bacon and slow smoked. They. Were. Awesome. Plus we had slaw and potato salad and the previously mentioned, compromised caprese salad.

Oh, and there was swag. Like, koozies and stadium cups.

Porktober branding
Leland and Amy modeling the stadium cups.

And, as hosts, we all, of course, had to wear matching shirts.

Porktober branding

Finally, Glitsy was ready and the boys got BUSY. It was a frenzy.

Porktober carving

Porktober carving

Glitsy was decimated. Only her head was left (and actually, I think her cheeks were consumed soon after this picture.

Porktober carnage

Pretty gorey stuff. And it was all brought to you by this group of hoodlums, who are already making even bigger plans for next year.

Porktober crew
Scary glowy eyes notwithstanding, we look pretty good for gangstas.

That delicate little blonde in the middle there was quite insistent that we should make every effort next year to have LL Cool J attend, because, as she tipsily put it, “We’re doing it, we’re doing it, we’re doing it well.” I’m sure Glitsy would agree.

It’s Beginning to Smell a Lot Like Porktober

October is a very special month around thePoeLog household. It’s the birthday month of XFE, aka my boyfriend-for-life. It’s also the month we met. Yep, seven glorious years ago this month he wore me down and convinced me to go out with him. A couple of weeks later, on Halloween, he tricked me into our first smooch.

October is also when we usually celebrate Fall Fun Day. This year, Fall Fun Day has been postponed till November and extended into a weeklong event to be celebrated in the Basque region. Speaking of travel, October is usually a pretty big month for that. In October 2009, we did an amazing driving tour of Ireland and XFE bought me my first pair of Louboutins.

Kissing the Blarney
Pretending to kiss the Blarney Stone so I could get the hell off that freezing rampart. No injuries sustained, surprisingly.

In October 2010, we went to New Orleans with our friends Matt and Melissa, and Troy and Eddie. I slipped in the shower at the W hotel and had to get seven stitches in my forehead.

Not at all glamorous shot in an airport bathroom stall. Seemed fitting at the time. The grumpy expression is quite real.

Last year was a big improvement over the previous year. In 2011, we went to Paris and XFE bought me my second pair of Louboutins.

Paris gift

By my count, that means that this year, I might be do for stitches again.

And, if I do require stitches, it will most likely be related to the main reason why October is so special to us: Porktober. Porktober is a fairly new addition to our repertoire of made-up celebrations and traditions.

Porktober logo. Notice the tiny TM for trademark pending.

Porktober started last year, and arose because XFE read about pig roasting in Men’s Health or some other nonsensical place. I was, quite naturally, reluctant about the whole thing. But, using the whole birthday argument, XFE swayed me into agreeing to allow him to roast a small (ish. 56 pounds or so) pig on our back patio.

It was a mixed success. First off, the pig had to sleep overnight on ice and there was only one tub in the house – mine. We started the process ridiculously early in the morning – not a way to get my buy-in on a project.

Porktober pig
2011 pig. We’ll do about the same size this year, I suppose.

The weather was a bit uncooperative and as a result, the coals died down a number of times, which meant it took longer to cook the pig than we had planned. A mistake in the early mounting of the pig on the skewers meant it was not securely fastened and slid around during the whole turning and cooking process, a situation that compounded as the pig cooked and shrunk down.

We had made a whole host of other food products, including two briskets, which was a good thing since the pig was taking so long, but also turned out to be a bad thing since people were already pretty stuffed (and tipsy from hours of mint juleps) by the time the pig came off the fire. The result was a TON of leftover pig. More than the two of us could eat, that’s for sure.

Porktober pig
Tasty pig.

Then there was the subsequent cleanup the day after, which was completed by me and XFE on a very cold and drizzly wet Sunday, and required removing and storing the pop-up canopy, bleaching the fire marks off the patio, cleaning the spit and loading and returning it to the rental place, along with all the other dishes and recycling and trash gathering and floor mopping. And, of course, scrubbing the bath tub multiple times. Not a fun way to spend a Sunday after a party.

So while everyone had a good time at the party (how could you not when the juleps were flowing?), in my opinion, it had been a bit of a logistical mess. To me, the whole exercise had seemed like an awful lot of trouble for very little return. Sure, the wow factor of having a pig roasting on your patio is pretty fun, but overall, it just didn’t seem worth it to me.

So I was very surprised, gob-smacked even, when immediately after moving into our beautiful, completely renovated, and thus-far, pristine house, that XFE started mumbling about another Porktober. An even bigger and more grandiose affair. With a logo. And Porktober-branded paraphernalia. And, a trademark on the term, Porktober.

Porktober koozies
The logo, designed by my friend Brian, who only charged us a “friend” fee on his services. Fun fact: Brian is vegetarian, so he will not be partaking in the eating portion of Porktober. Also: he has two small daughters who will probably be traumatized by the sight of the piggie-on-a-spit.

XFE’s reasoning was that there had been lessons learned during the previous year’s event, and we could not let those lessons go to waste. We would build a better Porktober, complete with more coals (we’ve already procured seven bags of coals) and a sturdier (aka: proper) mounting process for the pig. The cooking will start later and the coals will be hotter so the pig is done sooner. There will be no brisket, only other snackie-ish items (don’t worry, I’ve preserved the pigs in a blanket).

One thing that has not changed – Monsieur Piggie will again have to sleep overnight in the only bathtub in the house – mine. So this Friday, I open my bathroom door again to a pink snout peeking out of my shower curtain. We’ll see if this year’s event sways me over permanently to the Porktober bandwagon. At least I know I’m getting a cute t-shirt out of it, and, hopefully, no stitches. I’ll be staying away from the mint juleps, just in case.

Porktober logo
Oh, did you want to see that logo again against a white backdrop? Because, we have that as well.

It’s a Pork-Tastrophe in the Making! A-PORK-alypse!

Everybody stay calm. We’re aware of this latest crisis and we’re planning Porktober accordingly.

As you may have heard, The U.K.’s National Pig Association, an esteemed organization if ever there was one, is predicting a pork shortage in 2013.

The U.K.’s National Pig Association said the European Union’s pig herd is declining significantly as pig farmers have struggled to cope with feed costs that have been driven up by global drought. Sow herds are shrinking by between 9.6 percent in Poland to 1.3 percent in Germany.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: Who cares about the EU’s pig problem? So what if herds are shrinking in Poland and Germany? I buy American pigs from American slaughterhouses.

But let me clarify here: They’re predicting a GLOBAL pork shortage.

According to the always subdued Daily Mail:

Next year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture forecasts that the nation’s per-capita supply of pork will drop to its lowest level since 1975.

All the evidence predicts that come 2013, there will be far fewer pigs around to satisfy the nation’s appetite for those irresistibly salty, succulently fatty strips.

Let’s let that sink in for a minute – no BLTs. No biscuits and sausage gravy (I suppose you could just have biscuits and plain gravy, but really, what’s the point in that?). No chorizo and eggs. Basically, breakfast would become obsolete. And what kind of salad can you really eat if there are no Baco-bits (actually, Baco-bits aren’t made with real bacon, so you might be alright still eating a salad).

The point is, this is a very bad thing. The Washington Post notes:

Global food prices have risen to record levels in recent months, driven in part by a severe drought in the United States and Eastern Europe. More than half of all U.S. counties were declared primary disaster areas this growing season because of extreme dryness and heat, the Associated Press reported.

The price of corn and wheat rose by 25 percent from June to July of this year, and soybeans rose by 17 percent, according to the World Bank.

Even the Major League Eating organization has taken action on this important issue, suspending all bacon-eating contests.

“We cannot, in good conscience, allow [top ranked eater] Joey Chestnut to eat bacon during a global pork shortage,” Shea said in the release. “We estimate that Joey alone could eat 20 pounds of bacon in 10 minutes of competition.”

The release also says MLE is encouraging its competitors to avoid bacon in their daily meals.

The one exception to the no-bacon rule is a bacon-wrapped-scallop-eating contest, since they are “really delicious” and “mostly scallop anyway,” according to Shea.

Damn straight. There should definitely be a “really delicious” exemption for all food rationing.

With that in mind, I want to assure all Porktober participants (trademark pending. I’m not kidding. We’ve actually applied for a trademark on the term “Porktober.” No word yet on whether it’s been granted.) Anyway, do not worry about your Porktober consumption schedule. For now, at least, pork supplies are abundant, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s monthly cold storage report. Yes, that is a thing.

 Pork supplies are particularly abundant, a major reason hog prices have declined by about 20 percent in the last 90 days….. Hog slaughter, by contrast, was up 5 percent from a year ago due to a larger number of animals. Hog inventories have been at record levels this year.

So, we’ve started hoarding. Like Doomsday Preppers, we’re preparing for the A-Pork-alypse. We’ve already procured the sausages for the pigs-in-a-blanket and the bacon is on order. We’ve already given our butcher a heads up on our pig needs and he’s assured us we’ll all be alright. The rest is up to the pig gods.

The Gas Man Cometh (and Yet, We Still Have No Working Stove)

This weekend was a weekend of promise. The promise of a completion of our sweet abode. The weekend where everything remaining on the new homestead punch list was going to be checked off with a satisfying finality. Alas, when homeowners make plans, the Contractor Gods laugh.

Yep, this dude is laughing at us.

There wasn’t much left, really. We needed speakers installed, walls painted, and a gas line put in for our stove.

We finally had an electrician come and install speakers  throughout the lower level (which, of course, took longer than promised and involved much more damage to our walls than described). But, by Thursday evening, we had the television and speakers up on the wall, a speaker installed in the kitchen ceiling and an outdoor speaker. It was, despite the holes in our walls, a very beautiful thing. Because it meant we could paint the lower level and be done.

The world’s cutest non-professional contractor XFE spent the next couple of days patching the holes in the walls and prepping for paint. In the meantime, I went and ran a race. The Clarendon 10k, which is a very nice race, mostly downhill. Really, it’s downhill and they give you a metro pass to get back up the hill to the start line. Brilliant.

We looked pretty fast before the race started.

The amazingly awesome pacer that I am, I started off way too fast and almost died. So I ended up walking way more than I wanted to. Particularly the last two miles. It was truly pathetic. Especially since I had run 6.25 miles earlier that week without stopping at all and felt great.

This is Taylor. She decided to bring the sexy back to running. It was her first 10K and she totally kicked my ass. Probably because of that aerodynamic shirt. Less wind resistance.

Here are my splits, which really tell the story:

  • Mile 1: 9:24
  • Mile 2: 9:08
  • Mile 3: 10:03
  • Mile 4: 10:54
  • Mile 5: 11:36
  • Mile 6: 11:56

I really pulled it out for the last quarter mile at 11:48. My total pace of 10:34. Not horrible, but not what I had been hoping for. Luckily, there was beer. Lots and lots of beer.

Look at the triumphant yet sweaty faces. Good times

(You can’t tell, but I have blue tape over the Nike swoosh as I continue my one woman protest against the company that hired back Michael Vick. I couldn’t bear to throw out my UT shirt, which is literally, the last Nike item I now own.)

I moseyed home at around 3 pm and saw this going on outside my house.

That’s right! After 2 months of living here, we were finally getting our gas line for our stove. We applied for the line right after we moved in, but the gas department around here is slower than Sunday’s Emmy’s broadcast, so they were just getting around to putting it in.

But, of course, after tearing up the road and trampling my flowers, they realized they didn’t have a welder on duty and could not complete the task (XFE saved most of the flowers and replanted them, for which I’m very grateful. But my geraniums look pretty trod upon).

On Sunday, we needed to get out of the house so our real-non-XFE contractor could come in and paint our walls. XFE really, really wanted to paint the place himself, but I convinced that we didn’t want to leave such an important task to our inexperienced paint rollers and it was worth the money to get it done right. So we bought two cans of paint, moved the furniture to the center of the room, and headed out to our favorite winery for lunch and some wine shopping.

We returned home about 8 hours later and our contractor told us that things had gone just so doggone well that he hadn’t even needed to get into the second can of paint. This caused our collective eyebrows to rise in disbelief. Sure enough, a few hours later, after everything had dried, we started noticing spots that weren’t quite completely covered. The morning sunlight revealed even more uneven coverage areas.

So let’s go through the items we expected to be done with by this point:

  • Speakers – Check. Done and check.
  • Painted walls – Nope. Need to be redone.
  • Gas for stove – Nope. Still waiting.

We did, however, find a use for all that heavy-duty construction gear parked outside our house.  This is what happens when you leave your large moving equipment unattended.

(BTW, there are no pictures of the walls nor the speakers because XFE wants to save some surprises for the big unveil at Porktober. Yes, you read right: Porktober is happening again.)

Five Stages of Porktober Acceptance

*WARNING: A pig was  most definitely harmed in the making of this post. If you’re squeamish, skip this one. If you like tasty, delicious pork and all it’s derivatives, read on.

There comes a time in every girl’s life when she realizes she is not in control of her relationship. She is not the driver of the “You + Me = Domestic Bliss 4Eva” bus. She is not the master of her fate or even, as it turns out, her own bathtub.

No, there is a day when a girl walks into her lovely pink and white bathroom after a long day at work, and discovers a 56-pound pig lounging on ice in her bathtub, right next to the Jo Malone White Jasmine and Mint bath oil and the Kate Somerville ExfoliKate facial scrub.

Honey, look what I found on my way home! Can we keep it?

The story of how this pig came to be in my tub is a long one, debated and revisited over several months. But in the interest of not driving myself crazy, here’s how I came to accept what has become known as Porktober. I will use the Kubler-Ross Five Stages of Grief model to illustrate.

Denial —“This can’t be happening, not to me.”
My normally-sane-personal-chef-for-life XFE first read about roasting a whole pig in the July issue of Men’s Health magazine (so around June). It should be noted that the Men’s Health subscription was a gift I purchased for him a few years back. I wonder which subscription we’ll let lapse next year? Hmmmm. My first response when XFE suggested roasting a pig on the brick-laid back patio of our rented home was, “You must be kidding. That’s never going to happen. Forget it.” I was sure he was joking. Or that the next month’s magazine would contain a retraction along the lines of: “Yeah, remember that pig thing? Nobody in a highly-populated area with historic, woodframe rowhouses close to each other should attempt this. That means you, XFE of Alexandria, Virginia.”

Anger — “Why me? It’s not fair!”; “How can this happen to me?”; “Who is to blame?”
Once in the second stage, I began to realize XFE was quite serious and I raged against Men’s Health and the entire publishing industry. My anger also took the form of ridicule towards the animal kingdom (“Pigs are so stupid.”), the cooking industry (“Roasting is such a stupid way to cook something.”) and domesticity (“Boyfriends are so stupid.”). I received sympathetic nods and increased personal space from those within earshot.

This is what I woke up to at 6:30 AM on Saturday morning. Honey, can you pass the creamer?


Bargaining — “I’ll do anything to keep my patio non-scorched.”; “I will give my life savings if we can stop the pig.”
The third stage involves the hope that the individual can somehow postpone or delay the inevitable. Since the planned pig roast was timed to coincide with XFE’s birthday, I tried to lure him away from the idea with promises of parties at other sparkling locales, complete with DJs, disco lights and bartenders (He likes DJs! He likes disco lights! He likes bartenders!) Alas, alack, he also likes cooking large animals over an open fire and impressing large groups of people with his culinary skills, which are, fair enough, substantial.) There was even a half-hearted attempt at blackmail involving XFE support at a half marathon in Annapolis in late November, which I dropped when I remembered I don’t like running (or doing anything else) in the cold.

Darling, wouldn’t you just rather have some nice little sweet cherry gummy piggies? Wouldn’t you just?!

Depression — “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “The pig is coming, so what’s the point… What’s the point?”
During the fourth stage, I began to understand the certainty of the now-named Porktober. After all, invitations had gone out. Spits had been rented, medieval trussing needles procured. Steve the butcher had been contacted. As the event grew closer, I became more silent, withdrawn whenever pig talk came up. I began to disconnect from my affection towards pigs. I used my Porktober-depression as an excuse for being distracted at work and slacking off at running. Again, there was little or no sympathy for my plight.

The only thing that could possibly bring me out of my depression — sangria.


Acceptance — “It’s going to be okay.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.”
In this last stage, I began to come to terms with the pig roast and even found humor in the situation, which is, after all, my normal coping mechanism. There were also a lot of eye-rolls and snarking during the final prep and assembly of the pig, which, while perhaps not qualifying as 100% acceptance, is again, a part of my coping mechanism.  

And so, gentle readers, after finally processing these stages, I let go of my expectation that I was in control in this relationship and fully embraced the concept (if not the execution – *insert eye roll here) of Porktober. And, even though it meant conceding dominance, I’m ultimately glad I did. After all, everything from the planning and prep to the oohing and aahhing when XFE and his co-conspirator Leland pulled the pig off the spit made XFE so happy. He was pretty entertained for several months. And, it was, after all, his birthday.

Then, things got very medieval around here.

Other than the bathtub pig storage (my bathroom is the only one with a tub—that’s how I lost out on that deal) and the post-pig-rainy-day-cleanup, we actually had a lot of fun. I’ll give more details in the days ahead. Along with more pig pictures, of course. Don’t let you significant others see it….they might get ideas.

At least Running Buddy Amy was there to cheer me up. We were pretty damn cheerful by the time that pig was done.

Has your significant other ever gotten his way on a crazy idea? How did you deal with it? What bargaining/concessions did you get in return?