I Killed Your Chicken. Prepare to Dine.

Is it the challenge of hitting a small target? I dont’ really know.

To change things up from updates about where Gbot has last peed (in his Yo Gabba Gabba Vans), here’s a funny famous-person story for you:

Fairyland (from blog.oregonlive.com)

Once upon a time, in a fairytale land called Sun Valley, Idaho, where many a prince and princess of Hollywood rode on their noble G5s to their seasonal palaces among the chairlift towers and real estate offices, there once lived a serving girl named Betsy.

She was a sassy, competent serving girl, laboring by night at a fine northern Italian eatery called Piccolo (now, sadly, defunct). The servers brought gnocchi and lasagne bolognese to the common townspeople who dined there amidst the visiting cinematic royalty such as Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, Michael Keaton, and Rita Wilson, and even occasionally the King of the balls, Matts Wielander.

Much Betsy’s favorite famous guest was Jamie Lee Curtis, who was funny, friendly, polite, kind to her kids, whom she always brought with, and a generous tipper. Her husband, Christopher Guest, accompanied them when they came to dine several times each summer. Now, where Betsy the serving girl could easily flirt with Ms. Curtis and exchange tips on where to find nice earrings with Ms. Wilson, she found herself intimidated by Mr. Guest. His expressionless face belied the razor intelligence and cutting wit behind such masterpieces as This is Spinal Tap, Best in Show, Waiting for Guffman, and, Betsy’s favorite of all time, The Princess Bride. All the world must be so boring to him, for we are mostly morons in comparison to Six Fingered Man, the character he played in The Princess Bride. Who among us doesn’t repeat a young, thin, tight-wearing Mandy Patinkin finally getting the chance to say to Guest’s character in a Spanish accent: “Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”?

The Six Fingered Man, eventually slain by a young nobody. (overthinkingit.com)

Each time he came to dine, Mr. Guest ordered the famous Rosemary Chicken–a quarter bird smothered in olive oil and rosemary and then roasted at 800 degrees. No one had ever been known to replicate this dish beyond Piccolo’s kitchen walls.

Now, while the staff was flattered that Mr. Guest enjoyed the signature dish, there is no more effective way to gain a chef’s distain than by ordering chicken. Ordering chicken announces loud and clear that a diner has little confidence in the chef beyond her or his ability not to fuck up a chicken. Why not venture the fresh summer pea ravioli made of homemade pasta with brown butter? Or the local organic lamb grilled to perfection with the Valley’s best garlic mashed potatoes? Not that Betsy judged. She didn’t really even care. The chicken was delicious. And she, too, had been guilty of ordering the same dish over and over at certain restaurants. Although she never ordered the chicken. No matter how good, it was still chicken.

There came a sad night, the second-to-last night before the restaurant shut its doors for business, forever. Ms. Curtis and Mr. Guest brought their entourage and filled the banquette. Betsy chatted with Jamie Lee and nodded when Ms. Curtis reminded her to bring the check to her end o the table rather than her husband’s. When Betsy took Mr. Guest’s order, she raised her eyebrows. “Chicken again? Or are you branching out this time?” she asked.

“Chicken,” he said (or something like that). “Next time I promise I’ll try something different.”

At which point Betsy said something like, “I’ll hold you to it.” She felt giddy with exuberance. Surely her charm must have had an effect.

But the exchange must have simply strengthened Mr. Guest’s belief that we are all mostly morons. Because, of course, there would be no next time. Betsy didn’t think of this until later that evening driving home.

It made her wish that she’d had the balls to present the chicken as she’d fantasized all summer. She would approach the table. She would lower it before him. She would say, in a bad Spanish accent, “Allo. My name ees Betsy Andrews. I keeled your chicken. Prepare to dine.”

She would have had nothing to lose. Jamie Lee was doing the tipping.

Such are the regrets of a serving girl.

And here, in one of life’s fun ironies, is a Princess Bride reunion article that Lil’ Bro sent from Japan the same day I thought of writing this post:

Christopher Guest was not in the picture; he was probably still at a table subtly abusing his not-so-smart server.

Overcast with Rain Showers and a 100% Chance of Magna-Tiles

We have beaten the odds. Idaho’s Wood River Valley receives an average of 250 days of sunshine annually. Anyone who lives here will tell you that it feels like a whole lot more. This is, after all, home to the famous Sun Valley Ski Resort. But anyone who visits when we visit will tell you it feels like a whole lot less.

Wunderground.com tells the dismal story:

Friday
snow Overcast with snow showers and rain showers in the morning, then mostly cloudy with rain showers. High of 41F. Winds from the WSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation 90% with accumulations up to 2 in. possible.
Friday Night
nt_snow Mostly cloudy with snow showers in the evening, then overcast with snow showers and rain showers. Low of 30F. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of snow 80%.
Saturday
snow Overcast with snow showers and rain showers, then rain showers in the afternoon. High of 41F. Winds from the East at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the SE in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation 90% .
Saturday Night
nt_chancesnow Overcast with a chance of snow and rain showers. Low of 25F. Winds from the NE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of snow 50% with accumulations up to 1 in. possible.

We did build a snowman, and have a snowball fight, and go sledding. Pictures to come. But we have spent an inordinate amount of time indoors. This morning, I mopped up the bathroom floor of potty and bathwater and failed to get the TV to work (Bot fingers busily pushing buttons has rendered both TVs useless for anything but The Aristocats–normally I wouldn’t mind, but today, on the fifth day of rain or rainish snow or snowy rain, I am ready to embrace television).

Then, thankfully, Mbot found Vivaldi on the portable tape deck, and both Bots twirled to Spring. Spring looks better on the inside than it does out our sliding glass door. Gbot twirled a rubber ducky, and Mbot made his articulated action figure, Ironman, jig across the end table. Ironman’s got some moves.

And now we’re off to the Starbucks. Again. Because at the Starbucks, in addition to cocoa, there are Magna-Tiles.

Magna-Tiles are the best building system invented since the Lego, although I’m fond of Trios, too.

They’re translucent plastic tiles in four shapes: squares, right triangles, equilateral triangles, and isosceles triangles (for those of you who don’t remember eighth grade geometry, those are the ones with two sides the same length). They are magnetized along their edges. Better yet, they magnetize preschoolers, toddlers, and parents alike. I had to come to terms with the destruction of my model of Notre Dame so that Mbot could finish his Washington Monument.  Not that we were thinking of them in those terms at the time. At the time, I was just thinking what a surprisingly relaxing morning it was.

(I checked online, and they seem to be sold out everywhere. I found a few sets on Amazon and eBay, but they’re outrageously expensive. My suggestion: Keep checking back. I found one good “Buy It Now” deal on eBay and snapped them up. They still weren’t cheap–they’ll be Grandma’s Bot birthday present.

And, as is evident from the last photo,  they’re even better when mixed with wooden fruit.

But I still wish it would stop raining.