Tag Archives: humour

Culinary Crimes Against Humanity Revisited: The Creature From the Black Lagoon

3 May
It may look like a harmless bowl of organic Pepto-Bismal, but Nav knows better

It may look like a harmless bowl of organic Pepto-Bismal, but Nav knows better

 

For those who’ve read my previous post regarding Chef Nav’s culinary crimes against humanity, there are certain inferences that one might draw about me. I am highly adept at devising original coconut milk extraction protocols, for one. For another, my general ineptitude in all things culinary would seem to rise to epic proportions on those tragic occasions when I happen to be in a position of importance in the kitchen.

By way of background, your friendly Navigator had become a bit too physically resplendent in his post-Christmas magnificence. Given that my mid-winter “arctic survival kit,” which may be known to you by its alternate name of “the spare tire,” had grown to ice-age proportions, The Namless One, who is so named as she may not be named, decided that it would be in “our” best interest if “we” embraced the Dukan Diet.

And so was my illusion that there was simply more of me to love to die a sudden, instant, and even immediate death.

To begin the Dukan Diet, one must be betrayed by a sister who volunteers to give you her Dukan Diet book. It’s like getting rid of your Edgar Allen Poe “Monkey’s Paw” – the curse now rests upon another. Thanks, Sis. I love you, too.

The Book of Spells

The Book of Spells

Not only are there delicious and healthy recipes in the book, there are also delicious and healthy Dukan recipes on the internet. And thus does my story truly begin.

The Nameless One is a planner. She is disciplined. All that happens must happen as has been foreordained. By her. In advance. As part of a Master  Plan. As a result, there are these things that mysteriously come into being. Quantum mechanics and metaphysics and the Higgs Boson and all that. Only these things — these mysterious, just-come-into-being-from-out-of-the-aether things– are called “lists.”

And, for some reason that I’ve yet to fathom, I must do what are written on these “lists,” without question. Kind of like the Ten Commandments, only different. How, I’m not exactly certain.

..., 2. Thou shalt take out the garbage. 3. Thou shalt rake the leaves. 4...

…, 2. Thou shalt take out the garbage. 3. Thou shalt rake the leaves. 4…

Just as there are different flavours and spins of the mysterious things that come into being in quantum mechanics, so there are different types of lists. The one in question was a “grocery” list, which contained mysterious and alchemical ingredient for the Dukan Diet. One of the list’s ingredients was more mysterious than quantum foam or Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle, which seemed to apply.

It was “seafood medley,” and I was uncertain as to what it was. A collection of lobster-eating songs?

It just so happened that during a spiritual sojourn at the local Farmboy temple, I encountered a bag of frozen seafood medley. I returned home, a culinary Indiana Jones, my triumphant frozen prize from distant shores held aloft. And there was much rejoicing.

However, The Nameless One is a High Entrepreneurial Sorceress of Interior Design. Navigator must tread warily about the home, lest he disturb the Enchanted Forest of otherwise functionless cushions. As it happens, The Nameless One had become busy with a series of long-hours Interior Design corporate spell casting sessions to exercise a certain demon of distaste, and so the seafood medley had become in danger of summoning a stinky seafood rot demon within kitchen’s stainless steel, counter-depth, French-doored root cellar. Thus was Navigator bidden to take the seafood medley and, in the lesser cauldron, perform some unholy incantation upon the magical ingredients.

Nav did not disappoint.

Beware the Enchanted Forest!

Beware the Enchanted Forest!

Unbeknowst to Nav, The Nameless One had requisitioned the seafood medley based upon an internet Dukan recipe. Innocent Nav, in his innocence, wondered why he could not find the stupid seafood medley recipe in the stupid Dukan Book that his loving sister had lovingly cursed him with. He thus consulted with the Oracle at Google Delphi, and came upon a non-Dukan seafood medley recipe in the internet aether. In retrospect, Nav should have checked for an Underwriters Laboratory’s “UL” approval seal before venturing forth. The listed ingredients were: butter; garlic; seafood medley; white wine; lemon; and green flakey dried herb thingies, to taste.

“Brilliant,” thinks Nav. “What the hell could possibly go wrong with six ingredients?” What, indeed?

Based upon a 30 year professional career history of dealing with dangerous fluids, Nav reads the recipe and realizes that it calls for 1/4 cup of white wine. Let’s see. 1/4 cup = about 60ml. One bottle of white wine = 750 ml. 750 ml – 60 ml = 690 ml of residual white wine. Nav immediately recognizes the danger to women and children, and then gallantly makes the required sacrifice.

He notes that the name of the South African white wine is “Two Oceans.” Nav makes the near-fatal error of thinking this relates to the geographic intersection of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. He is to later learn that it actually refers to the pending torrential output of his two tortured kidneys.

Oh, the sacrifices Navigators make for Queen and country

Oh, the sacrifices Navigators make for Queen and country. Hey, why is the photo blurry?

Already weak from his heroic defence of defenceless women and children, Nav turns to the task at hand. He follows the instructions with great care, and gets the seafood medley a’cooking in the lesser cauldron. The one with the non-stick coating, for easier cleanup.

That old black magic...

That old black magic…

He then begins the accompanying garlic butter sauce, in his poor-man’s KitchenAid le Creuset knock-off saucepan. Which looks remarkably like a pot to him, but which, for some unfathomable reason, is a saucepan, in the Enchanted Forest.

Sadly, advancing Two Oceans renal failure interferes with Nav’s renown recipe-reading skills, and he botches the butter measurement.

Nav employs the rarely seen kettle buffer tactic

Nav exploits the kettle for terrain masking. Sun Tzu and The Art of Kitchen War

 

Meanwhile, the lesser cauldron is gently cooking the tender and delicate seafood medley. Into something that the chefs at the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company would be proud of. “Ding!” goes the bubble, bubble, toil, and trouble timer, and off the fire does the lesser cauldron come.

 

Guaranteed to churn Nav's guts

Guaranteed to churn Nav’s guts

 

The unholy and most rubbery concoction is transferred into a large white bowl, as no other bowl may exist within the Enchanted Forest of functionless cushions. As to why, Nav is as uncertain as Heisenberg was.

 

The White Bowl of Mystic Offerings

Auger the Future with The Mystic White Bowl of Entrail Offerings

 

Then comes the garlic butter sauce. Only Nav’s botched the butter measurement so badly, what he’s actually made is semi-rotten rubberized Creature from the Black Lagoon garlic butter entrail soup.

 

Not every chef sees soup stock in this image. Nav does

Rare, indeed, is the chef who has the vision to see the soup hidden within this image.          Nav is such a chef

 

Yum, yum. Nav uses a spoon, to get every drop.

 

Somebody's missing a tentacle. And other unnamed body parts

Somebody’s missing a tentacle. And other unnamed body parts

 

The next day, Nav’s high-class Mexican goodwill ambassadorial friend, Monseigneur Montezuma dela Revenge, pays Nav a little visit. Several little visits, in fact, tactful diplomat that he is. Thankfully, the previous evening’s buckets of molten butter prove more effective than WD-40 in dealing with dela Revenge’s topic of primary interest. The only way it could have been better was if Nav had used goose grease instead of butter.

For some strange reason, Nav is reminded of this Vitamix beet & coconut milk adventure, and he knows, deep down inside (once it calms down), that somebody is trying to tell him something about Nav’s being in the kitchen. Some things are contrary to the laws of God and nature.

Nav in the kitchen is one of them. }:-(>

THE END.

 

The Yogateria Chronicles: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

1 Feb
Nav was not always this svelte and handsome. Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

Nav was not always this svelte and handsome.
Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

It was, as evenings go, a cold and snowy one. We were late, and The Nameless One, so named as she must not be named, was slightly vexed. We could not permit ourselves to be one of THOSE inconsiderate people who arrived late to yoga.

Were we to permit this to happen to us, we would be bad.

Through a hazardously blinding snowstorm, we raced to the Yogateria, that hallowed hall of harrowing contortions. We entered the main cavern silently, for one is better advised to make noise in a public library than in a yoga chamber of silent horrors. To our surprise, there were only a couple of penitents laying prostrate on the floor, whose hidden sins surely weighed mightily upon their dark souls.

I lay down, oblivious to the peril into which we had placed ourselves. Thankfully, The Nameless One was not so naive and innocent. She, scarcely to be heard above a silent breath, whispered to me, “We may be in a dirty studio.”

Good heavens.

A dirty studio is good if one is dirty dancing or partaking in other forms of debauchery. On the other hand, a dirty studio is bad if one indulges in the yogic arts of contortion and twisted self-suffering in recompense for one’s evil masculine existence. I was bathing on a floor coated with the wicked perspiration of sin that had been sweated out of the previous collection of spandex clad convicts of conscience. I was unclean, only more so, a lost moral leper looking for his colony of sin and suffering.

As the yoga janitor came in, we rolled up our mats and headed to the other, smaller cavern of yogic contortions. We were almost late – perish the thought! There were but two spots left for us two sinners at the front of the dark and somber room, spots which were right in front of The Wall of The Mirrors of Shame. The two spots were separated by two spots in between, and in the darkness I spied the silhouette of the two lithe spandex clad penitents on those two spots awaiting their torturous absolution.

As I drew near to my spot, the place of my soon-to-be future trial by agony, my eyes discerned the nature of the two spandex yoga warrior princesses frozen prone in anticipation of what was to come. Next to me was Muffy the High School Cheerleader. Sans pom poms, no less. Perhaps one day she would be old enough to get her driver’s licence.

Next to The Nameless One was The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. And Sweet Mother of our Blessed Redeemer, what a tattoo it was! It was a sultry tattoo. It was an evil tattoo. The wicked worm’s wanton head was worn clearly visible between shoulder blades laid bare by the heathen and slightly open-back Lulu Lemon spandex top of sin that its malevolent mistress wore, which should have been a size two, but was a size four, as this apparently is how one sizes said sinful Lulu Lemon tops, not that I would know. Where the dragon’s tail ended, I could not see and did not want to know for fear of my sinful soul’s lost salvation.

Close enough

Close enough

I sensed I was in immediate danger. Surely I could be sent to prison for doing yoga next to one so young. I gazed about the room, nonchalantly, innocently surveying the male yogateers. Perhaps one of them was an undercover cop. Were those guns in their pockets, or were they just happy to see me?

I wondered.

I did not wonder for long, as the High Priestess of Yoga entered the room and began the incantations to initiate the solemn rite of demonstrating excruciating male inflexibility. Upward dog, downward facing dog, chatterungha, cobra, and other names too horrible to mention, names known to strike fear into even the stoutest of male hearts.

I was no stranger to pain that evening. Nor was I to fear.

At one point we, for sins that must have been so great in some former life that they beggar the imagination, were in a contortion that mimicked Superman in full flight parallel to the ground and a stork standing on one leg in silent contemplation of its place in the universal scheme of things. In response to the unrelenting horror, my mind has thankfully forgotten the name of this pose, or at least it is very good at pretending it can’t remember. It was in this Superman-stork-from-hell position that my head was twisted to the right, towards Muffy the High School Cheerleader. God please, let there be police, no sirens, and no billy clubs!

As my gaze swept past Muffy the High School Cheerleader in the valiant but doomed attempt to preserve what little innocence I still possessed, whom did my eyes fall upon but The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.

OMG.

Whereas I was a bulbous flying one-legged pickle barely leaned over from standing vertical in a mockery of the Superman-stork-from-hell position, she was herself vertical, but in the other direction. In the most unnatural and demonic act yet witnessed in the Yogateria, she, standing on her left leg, had her head on her left foot and her right leg extending straight to heaven in a flagrant act of inhuman heretical flexibility.

It did not go unnoticed.

I have spent many years on this Earth. And in these many years, I have gained insight into the mysterious ways of wily women. Women can have raging battles in plain sight, terrible battles, horrific battles, and all that men see are sweet smiles and innocent gestures and meaningless words. And so I recognized, to my horror, that what The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo had done was not just to offend decency, Heaven, and Earth with her display of spandex clad hubris.

No. What she had also done was thrown down the womanly gauntlet of yogic flexibility right in front of The Nameless One. It was more than a challenge.

It was a declaration of yoga war.

One challenges The Nameless One at one’s peril, and so did The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo that horrible evening. The Nameless One may be ever-so-slightly past her glory years in terms of absolute yogic flexibility, but she is not helpless. She is the veteran of P-90x commando fitness bootcamp. She is a devoted acolyte of psychopath fitness warrior empress Betty Rocker. She is a veteran of the Toronto marathon. She cross country skis. And she does not fear girls with dragon tattoos.

It was a battle of unsurpassed violence, a battle replete with victories and defeats, a battle of wounds inflicted and sustained, a battle of grim determination and grim resolve beyond that of any male contest of arms.

And the men were oblivious to a man, with me the sole exception. They remained just happy to see me. Either that, or they really were police; one can never be certain of these sorts of things.

It was during the Sideways Starfish of Supreme Suppine Sorrow position that The Nameless One struck a telling blow, a mighty blow, a devastating blow, and the hubris of The Girls with the Dragon Tattoo was exposed in all of its fickle fragility, only then to be dealt the truly horrific mortal strike of the v-sit, as NO ONE out v-sits The Nameless One.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo lay broken on the yoga floor, and the men were none the wiser. I was. I was a survivor of the Great Yoga War, my scars visible to no man but myself.

And with her lawful foe laying vanquished beside her, The Nameless One joined me in celebrating our emancipation from that hot and sweaty twisted Purgatory as the High Yoga Priestess spoke the long awaiting incantation of freedom.

Namaste.

* * * * *

Thus ends the Yogateria Chronicles saga. For the time being, anyways. The instalments are:

 Nav in Dante’s Yogateria

The Yogateria Chronicles: A Sinister Danger

The Yogateria Chronicles: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Guiding the way through the horrors of hot yoga

The Yogateria Chronicles: A Sinister Danger

9 Jan
Actual unretouched photo of Yogi Nav. Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

Actual unretouched photo of Yogi Nav.
Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

There comes a time in every man’s life when he must confront his conscience. We, as men, walk through our journey of life, and in the corner of our minds we see haunting reflections of what should have been, much as one’s eyes catch glimpses of reflections walking past a shop window, ethereal ghosts a silent testament to wrong paths chosen along the way.

It is now, at a point that is near the half way point of my life, but which is not the half way point of my life, a life that has seen both sorrow and joy, defeat and triumph, and paucity of rum and a plethora thereof, that I can no longer run from the truth of my actions, actions which I told myself were justified, but that were in fact not.

I Photoshopped the above image of myself. I am not the paragon of yogic splendour that you see portrayed.

My body, which is a male body, and a large male body and not a small male body, small bodies weighing much less than large bodies as a general rule, has a shape. It is a shape which is not a typical shape, and it is a shape which does not lend itself to the practice of yoga let alone its perfection, nor does it lend itself to tying one’s shoes, nor any other activity in the realm of human affairs that has, as a fundamental attribute, the requirement to bend.

It is characterized by a large head, of a stature which does not just invite being characterized as large, but rather demands to be decreed as massive in proportion to the rest of me. At the other end are thunderous thighs that can barely hold the glorious bulk of me, beast that I am, aloft at the best of times. There is also, of course, the ponderous belly necessary to hold the great caloric reserves demanded by such a large head and struggling legs. All of which are complimented by stubby little arms that can barely reach one another, let alone any other part of me.

Actual unretouched image of my head. Human silhouettes for comparison purposes.

Actual unretouched image of my head. Human silhouettes for comparison purposes.

It is thus, having purged my soul of its uncleanliness, in much the same way as the Ancient Mariner rid himself of the albatross hung around his sun scorched neck, that I can now convey to any who stumble across these humble words the next chapter in the yogateria chronicles.

My first exposure to yoga, which nearly cost me my life, left me older, wiser, lighter by at least 50 lbs, and more flexible. Rumour has it that in Ottawa the next day, lithe 20-something’ish female business professionals were all discussing the great yoga scandal of 2014, being both scandalized AND mortified at the great transgression that had transpired. “OMG, he didn’t! He said ‘Butter chicken’ in response to namaste? That’s very bad. That’s terrible. He could be banned.”

The first yoga was candlelight hot yoga. It happened on a Sunday night. Like the fool that I am, I decided to do interval training on an elliptical machine the next day, the next day being the Monday, a day of penance for my great yogateria transgression. Penance for my penance, perhaps, as one who has uttered the blasphemous “butter chicken” cannot be penitent enough.

Thus cleansed, I could go to my second foray in the now semi-sacred yogateria on the Tuesday. I did go, but I did not go alone. Accompanying me was The Nameless One, so named as she may not be named. It again was hot yoga, but not of the candlelight variety, for such variety is to only be found during the sacred calm of the Sunday eve. This was to be of the fully lit variety, with all my fellow penitents in full view.

My suffering was of a similar nature. I need not recount the unnatural contortions to which my poor body, a body which is not small and does not bend of its own free will, was repeatedly subjected to. It goes without saying.

Despite all the suffering of the supplicant spandex-clad sinners who so densely populated the dungeon floor, suffering greater than any soul should have to bear throughout an eternity, it is not the pain and suffering of that evening which even now pervades my every waking thought.

It was when The Nameless One said, upon exiting Dante’s hot yogateria, “Did you see the one with the cute boy shorts?”

I sensed danger. Not the obvious danger of the majestic lion poised to pounce on its doomed prey, nor the less obvious danger of the frozen outstretched crocodile’s jaw about to snap shut on its hapless victim. It was a sinister danger, made even more sinister by the innocence with which it portrayed itself.

It was a trap.

For, as with the name of The Nameless One, the young lady of the conformal spandex boy shorts too had a name. She, clearly being of the line of the progeny of Helen of Troy, yet not being an ordinary descendent of said lineage, but rather a spandex clad descendent, and a scantily clad and flexible one at that, deserved a name. Her name was not a normal name, but a name of grace, of classical grace and not contemporary grace, a name that history will forever record. Her name was The Bottom that Launched a Thousand Ships.

A woman will test her man. She will test her man while seeming to not test her man. It will be a subtle test, such as innocently wondering if he had noticed The Bottom that Launched a Thousand Ships, who happened to be downward dogging directly in front of him in a brilliantly lit and sultry room for the excruciating duration of 60 minutes.

A younger man will not understand that he is being tested, and will stumble into the trap laid for his demise. Not so an older and wiser man. And so, being not young and therefore older and wiser, I did what I must do, for a man must do what he must do.

I lied.

It was not a little white lie, nor was it even a little lie. Yet is was not an outrageous lie either, as older and therefore wiser men know that such lies are just as likely to spring the cunning trap as is the ignorance of youth. It was thus an in between lie, it being between the little lie and the outrageous lie in terms of the injury caused to that most noble lady, Truth.

Thus, in fear for my life far more than for my soul, I replied, “No, I was too busy focussing on my balance.”

It is thus only by the grace of God and my own quick wit that I survived my second foray into Dante’s hot yogateria. It would not be my last. For in my next decent into Dante’s yogateria, I encountered…

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

compass rose

Nav in Dante’s Yogateria

6 Jan
Actual unretouched photo of Yogi Nav. Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

Actual unretouched photo of Yogi Nav.
Credit: Deepak, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yogisculpture.JPG

Someone who shall remain nameless, and hence shall henceforth be named The Nameless One, convinced me to go with her to hot yoga. “In the middle of winter?” I guess, why not? Although I was a little confused upon learning that it was hot yoga.

When I was a kid, it only came in plain and vanilla.

Off we go in what was only a minor snowstorm. After a lovely drive, we arrived at what I thought was the yogateria. Little did I know. For some strange reason, I was bid to enter the men’s change room and don my black non-speedo swim trunks and a black tee shirt.

Black is slimming. This proved to be a good thing.

I was led to a room. It was no ordinary room. It was a sultry room, a dim room save for a few candles along a distant back wall, candles whose faint, flickering light cast haunting shadows across the bodies laying on the floor, so still in their repose that they seemed to await a quiet judgement that spoke of a pending agony, a deep agony, a complete agony.

Vanilla?

And then a man entered. Not a large man, as the largeness of men is reckoned, nor a small man, as the smallness of men is reckoned, but a man in between a large man and a small man. He spoke. He spoke in a serene voice, a voice not lacking in confidence, a voice devoid of hubris or any other human failing, a voice that seduced me into yearning for the torture that was about to be inflicted upon my unsuspecting body, a body made not small by weeks of Christmas revelry and a lifetime of practice before, a body never intended by God or nature to bend at the joints, let alone anywhere else.

But it did. Oh, how it did.

As my eyes adjusted to the sultry gloom, a gloom better suited for a grim and swarthy tropical dockyard after sunset than a New Age nordic yoga torture chamber, I could make out the penitent bodies that surrounded me on the floor, bodies contorted in a macabre synchronized ballet of unnatural pose and pain so perversely profound that they formed, in unison, a dark angelic choir exalting in unholy silent scream.

I was surrounded by these dark spandex-clad and disturbingly lithe twenty year old Luly Lemon Amazon warrior princesses of unnatural flexibility. And as we contorted ourselves in a slow and silent tribute to self-flagellation, the air filled with a thousand musks in that dark and sultry room, a room closer to Hell than to Heaven, my very sinews crying in the agony of a thousand endless deaths, I came face to face with a realization that had only ever hovered at the recesses of my awareness, a realization that could only prove to be my complete and utter undoing.

Downward dog leading to the evil cobra reveals if the body in front of you is wearing a thong. Luckily for me, I wasn’t.

Then came other insights, in rapid succession, each one striking my mind as an innocent child striking its first match, awareness erupting from the dark into a brief consuming flame. There was a wall of mirrors in the front of the dark, sultry room, an unfeeling mockery of the torturous scene displayed before it, mirrors laughing silently at the writhing of the musky, sweat-drenched damned, mirrors that could betray the innocent eyes of one who, upon completing downward dog and then the evil cobra, that cold and heartless serpent whose venom coursed along my spine, through no volition of his own, beheld the wholly unsolicited yet inescapable display of the thong so cruelly thrust upon him.

It was a good thing that the dungeon of the distorted damned into which I had been deposited was dark, lest the mirrors betray the wanderings of my innocent eyes which were innocent no longer.

Then the man, who was neither a large man nor a small man, released us from our torment with but a single word, a simple word, a spiritual word. Namaste. There may be many responses to Namaste, or there may only be one. Whatever the response or responses to this word of subtle and sublime meaning may be, there is a response that is not that response or of those responses.

One is not to reply with “butter chicken,” however good an idea it may have seemed at the time.

Despite this and everything else, I survived Dante’s yogateria. I lived to tell the tale. I am older. I am wiser. And almost certainly more flexible.

compass rose

Head to Trader Joe’s

17 Dec
Credit: Sjschen, wikipedia

Credit: Sjschen, wikipedia

It will, of course, sound like culinary barbarism. Foodie heresy. Bistro blasphemy, even. Yet to any red blooded Canadian, it’s like mana from heaven.

French fries, gravy, and cheese curds.

Or as it’s known here, poutine. Sound iffy? Awful, even? Then why is Trader Joe’s now selling it?

Add Montreal smoked meat and it’s so sinfully good, it’s worth risking a heart attack for. Now available at Trader Joe’s, without the smoked meat.

For now.

My shopify job application

14 Dec
(c) shopify. I think. Please don't sue me.

(c) shopify. I think. Please don’t sue me.

As one whose military “best before date” expires in June 2014, I have to get off my backside and find a real job. Lo and behold, doesn’t delightful Ottawa Canada have info-age shopify, the little-known growing tech company that many are pegging to be a future Google, Amazon, Facebook, etc.

Shopify is a cool tech place where it’s a blast to work. All those young, cool techno dudes and dudettes, just having fun, being techno cool, and bringing in the techno $$$ gazigabillions.

They clearly need me. Here’s my application:

* * *

Hello youthful and exuberant shopify HR person! Where do I sign up? I’ll keep this brief:

– 30+ year Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) career ends no later than June 2014. Haven’t been charged yet. Have to get while the getting is good.

– Because of the terms of my release from the RCAF, I could work for you for free for a few months in early 2014. Kick the tires on me, if you like. To know me is to love me.

– I used to hunt things like nuclear attack submarines. Can’t put a price on experience like that. They’re pesky little critters. Think finding bugs in code is tough? Ha! Child’s play.

– My IT experience will be the envy of everyone at shopify: used to own a Commodore Vic-20 computer, an “8088”, a “286”, and a “386”; I not only know what Pacman was, I actually played it; and I coded in PASCAL, COBOL, and FORTRAN at university in the ’80s. That’s like being able to read ancient things like the Dead Sea Scrolls, Sumerian cuneiform tablets, and Egyptian hieroglyphics on temple walls. My IT cool factor is way off the charts. I am IT Zen. I live on an IT mountain top in Nepal and wear a white robe.

– I’ll be a stabilizing father figure to the younger folks. Seen a few things in my day.

– My home computer is a $50 old used clunker of a Dell. The thought of a free shopify Apple laptop might make me swoon. You can help put an end to processing poverty.

– How many people at shopify have actually used “swoon” in a sentence recently? Ever?

– I come from a culture of taking care of one another, and this means more to me than money ever will. This is what attracts me most to shopify.

– I helped create the Canadian Forces Aerospace Warfare Centre. How many of shopify’s people have helped create an applied military think tank? Call of Duty and Black Ops on steroids sort of thing. Okay, you got me. Sheratons and martinis. Air Forces are such gentlemanly institutions. But we play CoD and B.Ops. When our kids aren’t looking. Assumes we took the course on how to use the PS3 or XBox controllers. My torpedo pre-setter panel was much easier to figure out. What’s with the using the thumbs thing, anyways?

– I promise not to steal from the shopify Viagra closet. Still, don’t forget to keep it locked. Can never be too safe, temptation being what it is. I’ll keep the key safe if you’d like. Never know when you’ll need an emergency compass. Navigators are trained to think ahead.

– Speaking of Viagra, young chicks dig me. That’s because I am way old and “non-threatening.” Unless I fall in a vat of Viagra or you leave the closet unlocked. Thus, I can tell the young shopify ladies that they look great, and actually mean it without trying to pick them up. Good for morale. Plus the young techno dudes can observe and learn. And for $20, I’ll even put the good word in for them. Ann Landers of shopify meets lavalife meets e-harmony, even. I’d get some of the young guys to build the internal website or app or something techie, and then write some BS about advanced algorithms that statistically Kalman filter Chinese horoscopes in a proprietary and classified way. I’d actually be in the background with my tea leaves, Doreen Virtue Angel Cards, and Hogsback Vintage Lager. Hogsback is Ottawa local, and close enough to organic so as to qualify as being spiritual in my books.

– If I didn’t know who Ann Landers was, I’d look her up on wikipedia.

– First book in my forthcoming set of two is scheduled to come out in February 2014. Goal is that they be as profound as heliocentricity. That’s Nicky Copernicus’s idea that maybe it was us going around the Sun instead of the other way around. Radical thinking at the time; have to love a heretic.

– Thus, bringing me on board would thus constitute an act of supreme philanthropy. I wouldn’t starve to death before I finished Book Two. You’d all sleep better at night. Tax deductible, even.

– I own an iPad. At 48 years of age, that has to count for something. It even has a Retina display. My Vic-20 didn’t.

– I made an iPad screen capture of your webpage for this post. I pressed the round button at the bottom while simultaneously pressing the rectangular button at the top right. A complicated procedure, but I live for a good challenge. I’m a little fuzzy on the details after this. Still, it proves that I can be trained.

– I have been blogging for over three months. Most of my 150+ followers are devoted middle-age women. That doesn’t quite make me the Tom Jones of bloggers, but nobody’s perfect. They’re all beautiful, too. Top that.

– If I didn’t know who Tom Jones was, I would look him up on wikipedia. What’s up, Pussycat?

– My mother thinks I look like actor Nathan Fillion. I think Mom is biased and has been into the sherry again, but I love her anyway.

– Vinyl and turntables are making a comeback, just like me. My tube amps are custom 300B transformer-coupled SETs, and my deck is a custom re-built Lenco idler-wheel drive. Okay, so it was used when I got it. Still, if you don’t know what this means, you also need me to be your Chief Audio Officer (CAO). Nobody else has a CAO that I know of. Not even Apple or Google or Amazon. This would make shopify a world leader in the field. Maybe I could even get to meet the guys from Rush.

– I can think big.

– If I didn’t know who the guys from Rush were, I would look Rush up on wikipedia. I likely wouldn’t need Depends adult undergarments, either.

– My Saddleback Leather XL Classic Briefcase would, without a doubt, be the coolest bag at shopify. Nothing even comes close. Can fit a yak in it. Great conversation piece / icebreaker with the guys. You’d be in awe. It’s the bag you want to have when you’re attacked by a grizzly bear. Happens a lot in Ottawa. (Wait—those were Ottawa U feminists at their latest protest, weren’t they? My bad.) It’s a man-spiritual sort of thing. Right up there with cooking meat on the BBQ. Ohmmmm.

– I hear you have good coffee. The coffee I’ve drunk at work for the last 30 years is toxic enough to kill a lesser man. It must be why my bowels are so healthy. No nasty viruses or bacteria could possibly survive the coffee “cleansing” that my system undergoes daily Monday-to-Friday. No prostate medical claims for at least three or four years. And when it did happen, I would regale the young techno dudes with my hospital adventures. They’d be eating oat bran by the bucket in no time. Lower your corporate health insurance costs in a heartbeat.

– I could do the CAO thing part time. Compensation? Used Apple anything. Remember LISA? Thought not. Monthly XLg pizza with the works. Six pack once a quarter. What’s that? No, not your abs. Put the t-shirt back down, Arnold. Victoria Secret calendar at XMAS. McDonalds gift certificates. Employee of the month now and then would be appreciated.

– If I didn’t know what an Apple LISA computer was, I would look it up on wikipedia.

– I just donated $20 to wikipedia. Thanks for reminding me.

– When I was 14, I could clear a 3″ high jump on my skateboard. I only gave it up because it wasn’t an Olympic sport. There were no pools in Newfoundland at the time that I could drain to skate in. There was the Atlantic Ocean, but it didn’t have a plug that I could find.

– I’d use my $250 shopify fitness bonus to buy Lulu Lemon spandex yoga pants. Really tight ones. Just to make my gf jealous, and maybe to gross out everyone at the hot yoga class that I’d like for sure join. Just call me Dr. Downward Dog of Delightful Derrieres. BTW, what’s the shopify policy on “muffintops” at the office? I know you don’t have a dress code, but chubby middle age men in spandex? I am a fashion trendsetter, obviously. On top of being a heretic. Hello, muttonchop sideburns.

– My cousin is presently working on his Ph.D. in math at Carleton University with a focus on number theory. This is what is done with the developmentally delayed young men in my family to get rid of them. Not me. No b-stock here. My theory on numbers is that they exist, and that you can add, subtract, multiply, AND divide with them. Didn’t need a Ph.D. program to figure that out.

– Are any of the shopify techno dudettes in the market for a guy? My cousin’s available, and I’d be willing to split my aunt’s finder fee. He’s good at adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing. No guarantees beyond this. Ever see Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man?

– If I didn’t know who… forget it. Need someone to pour the beer? Hogsback?

When do I start?

Obliviously,

“Michael” the Villainous Navigator }:-)>