Tuesdays with Lenny

Mon, Dec 31st, 2007 | 4:59pm

I notice I only updated this page four times during the entire 2007 year. I suppose that could be considered lame from a certain point of view, but 2007 was a pretty crap year thanks in no small part to repeated rejections and refusals from pretty much every angle that one could possibly receive such treatment. Unemployment and homelessness were new experiences, but good old loneliness reprised its role for another fifty-two solid weeks. Perhaps I'm just wanting the wrong things (not gay).

I don't really have the right to complain, I realize, when I remember that it could have been a hell of a lot worse. My friend Len had a year that made mine look like one long vacation (which, in part, it was), the details of which I can't really share because it's none of your business, internet, and besides which he'd kill me if I did.* I offered my time and effort to help him with the only one of his hurdles that I could: performing a daunting array of restorations on his classic old house in order to make selling it a feasible proposition in today's bum market. During every visit, his frustration, perserverance, and uncompromising worldview would combine to produce quite a lot of solid gold, which I'm sorry I didn't think to begin recording sooner:

"Well, it's hump day, and if it doesn't rain, it'll be a dry hump day!"
- on Wednesday
"Oh come on, you can work a fork better than that, you booger eatin' moron."
- after I complained about the finely diced lettuce in a salad
"This stuff is like Cool Whip ... I hate Cool Whip."
- describing spackle
"I was raised in Providence. (Not Heaven. Rhode Island.)"
- on growing up
"They were weak!"
- on toasters he'd returned to the store
"You ever whistle and hum at the same time? It's like having a face kazoo."
- after whistling and humming at the same time
"That isn't funny enough to lie about."
- after saying anything incredulous
"Honestly, I didn't expect to live past 25."
- on life
"You could have used his head to crack walnuts."
- on a rabbi
"It's a can opener."
- after asking if I knew what a P38 was, to which I had replied, 'A gun?'
"I'd have been better off putting my pants on my head and running around the yard screaming."
- on an unproductive day
"There's a big difference between classical guitar and that country western inbred codependent bullshit."
- on Roy Clark
"Well, that's not gonna do much good."
- upon climbing into his truck and seeing his keys laying on the hood
"You know, I could pull the truck and the trailer all the way up the sidewalk and grass to the front door. Do you think they'd mind?"
- on quicker ways to move into my apartment
"Well, excuse me for thinking outside the fucking box!"
- when I called him a redneck for considering it
"If you ever have a dollar, rent that movie."
- on Blue Thunder, starring Roy Scheider
"They should make sex lube out of this stuff. Seriously, you could use it to slide an elephant uphill on sandpaper."
- on wire-pull lubricant
"If you ever need someone removed from this world, just let me know. I know guys that'll put you in a room and then throw the room away."
- in gratitude for thanksgiving food
"I didn't realize I was under a fuckin' microscope!"
- after seeing my list of his quotes

* I spilled paint on the hardwood, once, and his (I suspect calculated) means of ensuring I never did it again was to be very gracious and understanding of what was really just a dumb mistake, and then, while we cleaned it up, make idle conversation about what he felt was the safest and most efficient means of disposing of a body. If nothing else, 2007 really improved my tarp discipline.