A ‘Colbert Christmas’ will be the most awesome time of year

The Hollywood Reporter has a story about the pending “A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!” TV special airing Nov. 23 on Comedy Central.
Call me a sucker, but I’m an ol’ softie for the classic Christmas special. Sure, 99.9 percent of them are pure schlock but they’re part of the tapestry of the season — like fruitcake.
I’m a little weary of Colbert’s take on the special — the premise is that he’s supposedly snowed in and passes the time with his musical friends. Sometimes his over-the-top character starts to overstay his welcome. I just hope that he takes a light and funny touch to the holiday special.
Bottom line — I hope it’s more like “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and less like “A Kathie Lee Christmas.”

Election 2008 is a whale of a time

The whole “lipstick on a pig” discussion got me thinking about other popular animal-based turns of phrase. Using some of them, here’s how I see the current horse race from the catbird seat:
When John McCain first introduced Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate, a lot of people were wondering if he was selling a pig in a poke. Instead of being a fish out of water, Palin is clearly cock of the walk in the Republican Party after two short weeks.
While Palin is popular, some conservative birds of a feather are denouncing the open season to look this gift horse in the mouth. Barack Obama got in trouble for trying to put lipstick on a pig. The reference irked some because Palin noted that lipstick, and presumably other cosmetics, are apparently the only things that separate pit bulls from hockey moms.
Conservatives should chill — there’s no reason to think that Palin will let the cat out of the bag about Trooper-gate or other criticisms. After all, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.
In the end, it’s silly to argue that Palin (or any other candidate) should be off-limits for questions. That dog won’t hunt and that’s no bull.

Ah, hobo stew

Some of my friends have been scratching their heads because I’ve been mentioning something called “hobo stew.” I mentioned it on my Facebook account, but I started the references in an e-mail to colleagues for a luncheon.
Here’s the relevant text:

Please respond if you have an idea on where to eat downtown. Otherwise, I’ll probably pick a shoddy place, like that guy selling hobo stew on the corner of West Ninth and Main streets (Mmmmmm, hobo stew).

To be honest, I’m sorta scratching my head about the origin of hobo stew. In my personal experience, it’s a distant memory from when I first started camping with the Boy Scouts.
IIRC, hobo stew is a simple stew that is assembled in a can of baked beans. I think it’s baked beans, a little ground beef, some veggies and some salt and pepper. What made it “hobo” was the fact that it was heated over a stove or fire in the bean can. It was then eaten directly from the can much like the stereotypical hobo would.
I might be off on the directions — it was nearly 20 years ago (eek). Maybe it was cooked in a pot and then served in the cans (apparently modern-day cans have a plastic lining to prevent contact with the food).
And, now, for the education segment on Buzz Blog, a search for “hobo stew” turned up 20,800 results. A post on Sonomapicnic.com has an interesting personal history with hobo stew and includes a recipe. Finally, Wikipedia tries to equate hobo stew with Mulligan stew.

Questions about Election 2008

I shouldn’t be dipping my toes too much into the political realm, but this upcoming election has generated some light-hearted questions in my mind:
– I see posters up for something called “Bangkok Dangerous.” Is it promoting a new Nicolas Cage film or Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s abstinence-only sex-education program?
– When did “celebrity” become a four-letter word?
– Did Barack Obama make a two-point conversion when he spoke at Invesco Field in Denver last week? Or did he just stick with a safety? Why weren’t there more bad football references made about his speech?
– Much has been made of Palin’s foreign policy experience via proximity (apparently because Alaska is close to Russia, outer space and Santa at the North Pole). Is there a deliberate effort to avoid mentioning the great white menace of Canada?
Please feel free to submit your light-hearted questions as well.


The return of “Beverly Hills 90210” airs tonight on the CW (which airs locally as a subchannel of KHSL-TV 12). There has been a lot of hubbub made over the fact that the CW didn’t release a preview copy for media review.
I think this move will backfire on the part of the network. Although I’m not a TV critic, I can easily imagine that critics have a lot of TV to watch before the fall season starts. By not releasing the “90210” preview, I think the CW execs are doing critics a favor.
The network basically handed writers a gift-wrapped story by not releasing the preview. Basically all writers have to do is cover the fact that they won’t be able to see the show before tonight and they’re spared from actually having to watch the show. Well, at least until tonight.
Personally, I don’t know if I’ll watch the show. I’ve skipped a lot of shows that have a similar premise and maybe the show isn’t for me.