I know Marlene does her homework when it comes to places in Alameda that are worth going to, so I usually take her word for these things without thinking. But this time, one thing did cross my mind. I think maybe she's exaggerating a little about Ole's Gruel and Hardtack Hovel being the only place to eat. I usually go to Gym's Coffee Clutch where there's plenty of free parking, but they strike me as both being very good eating places. I like gruel, I like coffee, I like waffles, I like Gym's collection of old exercise equipment and historic sweat socks hanging on the wall, I'm not too keen on that Benedict stuff that they put on the eggs, seems kind of shifty, I'm not sure if you can trust it, but I don't really see much wrong with either place.
Editor's Comments: Anyone who's been in Alameda for more than five years knows that there is no middle way between the Coffee Clutch and the Hardtack Hovel. You either like one or the other. Claiming to like both just shows that you are trying to have your hardtack and eat it, too. Brenda Snook just needs to figure out what side she is on, and then dig in her heels (as long as she chooses the correct side, that is).
Friday, November 30, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 2007
What is the point of new restaurants opening in town? Everyone knows that there is only one place worth eating at, and that is Ole's Gruel and Hardtack Hovel. Things were so much better when the Hovel was the only thing open on Sunday mornings. There is so much traffic now, and so many people taking up parking spaces, that my friends and I cannot all find parking within ten feet of the entrance when we meet there. If it were not for the delicious and reasonably priced Buttered Hard Gruel, I might just stay home, but instead I keep struggling through the awful crowds to eat there. What else can I do?
at 5:12 AM
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
The Alameda Daily Noose and I received an anonymous tip informing us that there is a shadowy "push poll" being conducted on the future of Alameda Point, colloquially known as "Alameda Point." Normally we would condemn this kind of nefarious activity, but after reading the fair and balanced questions, we feel compelled to bring the survey to the attention of all Right-Thinking Alamedans:
1. Don't you think that it would be better to leave Alameda Point as a big empty space, or, better yet, a place for people from out of town to fly their model airplanes?
2. Would you rather that the future of Alameda Point be placed in the hands of Evil Developers from Out of Town, who would like nothing better than to tie up our Treasured Island and have their way with her, or would you prefer it to be placed in the hands of kind, gentle, Right-Thinking Alamedans?
3. Should that Manhattanite, John…Knox…White, be tarred, feathered, or both?
4. What are your top complaints about the potential redevelopment of Alameda Point? Please rank the following choices from 1 to 5:
5. Wouldn't you have to be some kind of an idiot to support so-called Tartan Oriented Development at Alameda Point, knowing full well that it might be your children who are exposed to Bagpipe music every night, and knowing that Scotsmen might be parking in front of your house?
6. Measure Acorn, colloquially known as "Measure Acorn": great measure, or greatest measure?
7. Is it not untrue that trees beget Squirrels, and Squirrels beget mayhem, and therefore, tree density should continue to be limited by "Measure Acorn" at Alameda Point?
8. If Chuck Corica were alive today, wouldn't you agree that He would be disgusted by any plans for Alameda Point that did not consist entirely of a golf course, and wouldn't you be a sorry excuse for an Alameda citizen—ignorant of our Treasured Island's history and not fit to kiss its soiled golf shoes—if you thought otherwise?
9. Don't you hate surveys that don't have a nice, tidy, round number of questions?
10. Don't you love it when the handsome, intelligent writers of a survey insert a completely unnecessary, totally uninformative question at the end, even though there's no more information to be gleaned, just to make a nice, tidy, round number of questions?
Please record your answers on a standard 5" by 5" cocktail napkin and submit them to Alameda Daily Noose World Headquarters by Tuesday, December 4, 2007. All of the results we like will be tabulated and published whenever we are darned well good and ready.
at 5:39 AM
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
My car was in the shop, so I was walking the two blocks from my nail salon on Park St. back to my house. I made extra sure to walk along Central Ave. so I would get a good view of the Super-Mega-Monster-Plex That Everyone Hates over my shoulder as I walked along. I like to curse the structure as I go, the vigorous complaining makes my walk so much more enjoyable.
Anyway, you can imagine my surprise when I saw these huge, gargantuan towers looming up, blocking my view of the object of my scorn! Worse yet, the farther away I walked, the higher the towers rose, until finally the entire Super-Mega-Monster-Plex That Everyone Hates was completely shielded from my withering stare! My complaints were all bottled up inside me, and I tell you, that isn't very comfortable.
Why wasn't I informed that there was a huge church in my neighborhood? I didn't get any notices in the mail, or stapled to my door, or presented to me by my elected officials, or printed on my breakfast cereal box, which is the only thing I read, anyway. Does the City think we're too stupid to ever figure it out?
Something ought to be done about it. We can't have people going around putting up huge churches on every corner, interfering with the daily routines of derision carried out by Right-Thinking Alamedans like me.
at 5:45 PM
Monday, November 26, 2007
Once again, the Alameda Daily Noose and I have scooped all of the other major news media by getting the huge scoop shown in the exclusive Alameda Daily Noose photo above. If you're a dog owner, you'll want to run like a greyhound to your local hardware store to pick up this miraculous new invention that has already made life much easier for the Alameda Daily Noose and me. This wonder device not only makes walking our faithful canine companion, Scoop, a pleasure, it also helped bring the Alameda Daily Noose and me back together after our little Thanksgiving spat. As we shared the old, familiar thrill of getting a scoop this big, my heart softened; I smiled and said to the Alameda Daily Noose, "Aw, shucks, I can't stay mad at you!"
at 5:15 AM
Friday, November 23, 2007
As usual, the Alameda Daily Noose and I spent Thanksgiving together with our extended families, who traveled from all over Alameda to spend this joyous holiday complaining, arguing, and fighting amongst ourselves. Mid-way through Thanksgiving dinner, the Alameda Daily Noose and I got into a heated discussion over the proper way to pass the gravy boat. Unfortunately, tempers flared, old wounds were re-opened, and glasses of fruit-forward Californa Chardonnay were hurled into handsome faces. As a result of this litle spat, today's issue will not be published. Although we are not speaking at the moment, the Alameda Daily Noose and I expect to have things patched up in time for Monday's edition.
at 5:56 AM
Thursday, November 22, 2007
I know you count on me to supply you with high-quality complaining on a fairly frequent basis, but even the best of us have to take a vacation in honor of Thanksgiving. For one day a year, we must all set aside our vigilant grumping and count our blessings instead, so I am going to devote this letter to all of the things that I have to be thankful for.
This Thanksgiving, I am glad, as usual, that I have a wonderful family to help carry on the complaining traditions. I'm also thankful for my beautiful house and my health, which, if you pay any attention to those "doctors" going on about "cancer risks," you'd think I wouldn't still be walking around which, by the way, I plan to do for another half a century or so, thank you very much. So I think that's three things that I have to be thankful for.
Of course, as long as I'm writing, I should mention one small thing that has been on my mind, which is the lack of parking at my favorite movie theater. Don't people have enough other things to do that they have to be going to the movies all the time? The few times a year that I decide there's something that might be worth paying those outrageous ticket prices for, everybody else goes on that very same day, and it's just impossible! There are too many people around in general, and not enough entertainment, because I'm certainly not going to go and sit through some "opera" for fun, which I don't know why anyone would ever do that, unless maybe it's the kind of people who think it's okay to plant trees everywhere until our entire town is overrun with Squirrels, and that we should all get our kicks from watching Squirrels destroy our lawns with their so-called "acorns," until the whole town is just like that big Central Park in the middle of Brooklyn! That's not what we want in Alameda.
Former City Council Candidate
at 5:24 AM
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
I recently became aware from a uh, um, source that there is a new video on the interweb in circulation that mocks various participants in the city that the source just plain doesn't like. And I should know, because I sat through every disgusting frame of this film…twice! Of course it is childish, crude, utterly reprehensible and must be condemmed, so I'm not going to tell you where it is on the interweb. Not even if you ask me nicely and say please with a cherry on top. I will say though, hands-down this video is by far funnier than anything I have read on the B.L.O.G.S., it is so funny that I know the comedy writers for Two and a Half Men will be kicking down my door...I mean...the video creator's door begging me...I mean HIM to come work for them. Maybe those other not-so-funny people that I am funnier than can get the writers from Everybody Loves Raymond since they must be out of work anyway to help with their material.
at 5:21 AM
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
A local drinking establishment recently joined the swelling ranks of Alamedans lining up to bestow honors on the Alameda Daily Noose and me. On November 16 the so-called Tiki Lounge, which we believe is known as "Prohibited Peninsula," added a cocktail called the Journalist to its menu.
Like its namesake, this drink is classy, strong, and virile. It combines all the sourness of lemon juice and the dry wit of vermouth, with a healthy dash of bitters thrown in for good measure. It is served straight up, just like our news, scoops, and investigative reports. The cocktail is garnished with laurel leaves, which we modestly removed and placed upon our brows before snapping the exclusive Alameda Daily Noose photo above. We fully expect that this new drink will prove as popular as our reportage, retaining a place of honor on the menu for years to come.
at 5:06 AM
Monday, November 19, 2007
Last week, the Alameda Daily Noose and I had the honor of receiving yet another gee-mail message from none other than Marc Albert of Tijuana Brass Band fame:
From: marc albert
Sent: Thursday, November 15, 2007 1:48 PM
To: Roger Grumbel
Subject: Alameda's savior
Perhaps all the local peaceniks can be pushed aside. What we need to save Alameda is a real hawk for our War on Squirrels
Apparently, an entire college campus somewhere in Ohio, which the Alameda Daily Noose and I understand is a Midwestern state famous for its potatoes, was being terrorized by a Squirrel that, no doubt due to exposure to gamma radiation in one of the institution's research labs, had mutated into some kind of hideous genetic freak. Thankfully, the beast's reign of terror was cut short by a true avian hero, an ordinary hawk that somehow managed to fell the monster, as shown in the exclusive Alameda Daily Noose photo above. Immediately after the incident, there was a great outpouring of support from the student body, as documented on one of those so-called My-Face pages on the interwebs that the kids today are so fond of.
On behalf of our grateful readers the Alameda Daily Noose and I thank you, Mr. Albert, for taking time out from your illustrious musical career to inform us of this great victory in the Global War on Squirrels.
at 5:14 AM
Friday, November 16, 2007
Former City Council Candidate Will Teach Pesky Neighborhood Residents Not to Interfere with Her Driving
I am fuming mad about the big, round, concrete thingamajig that was recently installed in my neighborhood about five years ago. Who ever thought that planting some flowers in the middle of that street, and making us all drive around it to get anywhere, would slow down speeders? My car does not handle curves well, and I am getting sick of having to adjust the steering wheel every few seconds just to get down the street. Once I finally get out of that maze, I end up having to drive faster to make up for lost time.
I don't know who to blame for this transportation disaster, but I will show them. I am going to stop driving down the street that has that curb obstructing it, and let me tell you, I don't even care that it has my favorite color of petunias planted in it, I am so mad.
In fact, I am so mad that when I do drive down that street in the future, which by the way won't be very often at all if I can help it, as I already said, but when I do have to drive down it, I am going to drive very slowly and stop for every pedestrian, and I will glare at them as they cross the street in front of my car, and I hope that will make them happy (which, if you can't tell, I don't really care if they or the other drivers around me are happy or not, because they are always in my way, especially when they park in front of my house).
And that reminds me, I am sick of people speeding past my house, too. Why is it that the City is so busy putting these traffic slowing things in everywhere except where they might actually do some good, which is on my street when I'm trying to sleep at night, or trying to pull out of my own driveway. I mean, do I live on a racetrack? It's like no-one is paying any attention to my problems, even though I am constantly complaining about them.
Former City Council Candidate
at 5:10 AM
Thursday, November 15, 2007
I have it on good authority that a major change is in the works for our community. Plans are already being drawn up to add a dense collection of chalk images to the pavement at Alameda Point, like some forest of horizontal billboards. I'm sure that if all of the pieces of chalk art in the plans were laid end-to-end, and then raised vertically, they would undoubtedly tower over everything else in Alameda, including City Hall and every church, even if the churches themselves were stacked on top of each other! In fact, I've heard that the drawings will even be visible from space.
Special interest groups are trying to ram these plans through, but is this the kind of activity that we want our impressionable children to be involved in? Concerned parents need to step in to ensure that artwork happens on paper where it belongs, rather than being shamelessly displayed out in the open.
at 5:14 AM
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Thank you for your explosive exposé on the Zeppelin parking nightmare about to be visited upon our Treasured Island. I know those ponderous silver gas-bags look harmless enough, but if we start mooring them with some kind of cable and providing community access, it will allow tens—maybe even dozens—of citizens to get on board for ridiculous flights of fancy on a regular basis. Once that happens, there's no telling what kind of disaster could result if one of those drifting gas-bags should collide with something solid and well-grounded!
As soon as that new theater opens, the city is going to be bumper-to-bumper with Zeppelins. They will not only be tying up there, but also in all of the surrounding neighborhoods. I, for one, do not want Zeppelins parking on top of my house. That T.V. antenna I put up back when you first started broadcasting your show would give them just the opportunity they're looking for, but my roof is no place for people to be tromping on and off a big airship. That would really burn me up!
Now I'm not an unreasonable N.I.M.B.Y.—Not In My Back Yard. My back yard is far too small for a Zeppelin to land in, anyway. I have no problem with them as long as they are N.A.M.B.Y.—Not Above My Back Yard.
at 5:54 AM
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
I feel it is important to call to everyone's attention to some deceptive advertising by one of Alameda's real estate companies. There is currently a cottage listed online for sale in the "Stonehedge area," whereas everyone knows that the 1920's development pictured is called "Stoneleigh." It's very distinctive, but I guess some people can get confused about anything, especially when there is a coordinated effort going on to obfuscate the truth through misinformation like the obviously altered photo below.
Compare it to this genuine photo, and it should be obvious that someone with poor Photoshop skills is trying to perpetrate a hoax, perhaps in an effort to make it appear that there is more than one group of little courtyard homes in the city of Alameda.
Not only are the letters on the "Stonehedge" sign a different size from those in the original, but the forger has misspelled the name of the fictional development! Was it just due to gross carelessness, or do they think the citizens of Alameda are not intelligent enough to recognize that "Stonehenge" is clearly a nonsensical name?
The alteration of photos for any purpose is reprehensible. The Alameda Daily Noose never publishes any photos that have been retouched, strategically cropped, or in any way made to represent something other than the absolute truth. Whoever is responsible for the blatant changes to the photo above should be ashamed!
at 5:59 AM
Monday, November 12, 2007
Scoop! Alameda Daily Noose Documents Test of Zeppelin Mooring Masts on Super-Mega-Monster-Plex That Everyone Hates
Once again, the Alameda Daily Noose and I have scooped all of the other major news media with our exclusive Pulitzer-prize-eligible Alameda Daily Noose photo (above) of Sunday evening's test of the new Zeppelin mooring masts that were recently installed atop the Super-Mega-Monster-Plex That Everyone Hates. When fully operational, the facility will be able to accommodate up to six of the giant airships at one time, according to City propaganda.
The mooring masts are part of the latest trend in "Zeppelin-Oriented Development," or Z.O.D., which is all the rage among the so-called planning experts who regularly gather to plot the destruction of our cherished way of life. This unwelcome development in the already unsightly project is clearly the work of none other than our arch-nemesis, John…Knox…White and his diabolical Transit Panel. John…Knox…White's dastardly scheme is to force people out of their cars and into Zeppelins, thus turning our Treasured Island into this:Doesn't that Manhattanite John…Knox…White know that unlike New Yorkers, Alamedans love their cars, and will never tolerate big, ponderous gas-bags drifting around town, all puffed up with seemingly inexhaustible quantities of hot air?
at 5:37 AM
Friday, November 9, 2007
The Alameda Daily Noose and I are well accustomed to fan mail from famous people all over Alameda, but even we were taken aback when we received a letter recently from one of our all-time favorite musical artists. None other than Marc Albert of Tijuana Brass Band fame is apparently an avid reader of our soon-to-be-award-winning daily noosepaper. In honor of the occasion, the Noose and I put on our best leisure wear and took a print-out of the letter down to the romper room to peruse while enjoying a number from our favorite album, Whipped Cream and Other Delights. In order to allow our readers to participate in this transcendent experience, we have provided an Alameda Daily Noose exclusive video of the event.
Oh, and of course we read the letter that Mr. Albert sent. In it, he alerted us to an article in one of the other major news media documenting a frightening development in the Global War on Squirrels. It seems that a youngster in La Crosse, Wisconsin, the birthplace of that game played with the funny basket thingies on sticks, was chased by a gigantic Squirrel, and escaped its horrible maw only by wrenching out the mammoth tooth that had snagged him. He is shown holding the tooth in a photo that must have been taken by his grandfather only moments after the incident. The Alameda Daily Noose and I have often warned that the Squirrel problem will only get bigger if we allow tree density to increase on our Treasured Island, and this is a sobering example of just how big that problem could be.
There but for the grace of Measure Acorn, colloquially known as "Measure Acorn," go we.
at 5:24 AM
Thursday, November 8, 2007
The winner of tonight's rumble, which all Right-Thinking Alamedans already know will be Mr. Williamson, will walk away with a $10,000 purse or "sporran," as it is called by those who hate Alameda as much as they love Bagpipes. So get ready for the match of the millennium as Mr. Williamson defeats them all in a rock-'em, sock-'em, perfectly fair and completely balanced and civilized debate.
For those readers who aren't from Alameda, Measure Angus, colloquially known as "Measure Angus," is some legal dingus in the City of Alameda that saves us all from the horror of Bagpipe music, makes it safe for us to walk our dogs at night, and is the only reason we all bought houses here in the first place. For more information, attend the debate at Alameda Central Gathering Place. All cabers must be checked at the door.
at 5:28 AM
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
I have to tell you a story about the most wonderful customer service I have ever experienced. Of course, it happened right here in Alameda.
As you know, I think it's important that we shop locally and support our local Alameda businesses. So I was visiting our local Starbucks, and since it was Sunday, I thought I'd treat myself to a hot cocoa. I placed my order - and the waitress (or I think they are also called barristers) actually went above and beyond the call of duty - she asked if I'd like whipped cream on my cocoa!
What a tasty delight it was! And such customer service. She didn't HAVE to offer me whipped cream, and that little token of appreciation made all the difference in the world!
I hope that all twelve of the other Starbucks in Alameda will learn from this young lady's example and continue this fine tradition of customer service.
Alicia Chen Schnatmeyer
at 5:17 AM
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Following are highlights from a handwritten note stuffed under our door by our next-door neighbor, Mildred Bolus:
Creamy Hamburger Spud Bake
2 lbs. hamburger, lightly browned
salt and pepper
1lb. package frozen tater tots
Press hamburger and onion mixture in bottom of medium casserole. Sprinkle with salt and pepper (go easy with that pepper, though!). Place tater tots on top. Pour over top: one 8 oz. container sour cream diluted with 1/4 cup skim milk.
Bake 1/2 hour at 350 degrees, uncovered. Serve with ketchup.
Mildred Bolus visits the Alameda Daily Noose and me every Tuesday for tea while her husband Mort plays golf, year-round, rain or shine, at Alameda Daily Noose World Headquarters.
at 5:42 AM
Monday, November 5, 2007
I spotted your dog's chew toy poking out from under the side hedge yesterday. Thought you might be looking for it.
Editor's comments: The Alameda Daily Noose and I have reunited our faithful canine companion and journalistic watchdog, Scoop, with his favorite toy. Scoop just loves to tear into that squeaky rubber roll that looks just like one of the local rags that call themselves "newspapers". We toss it into the yard for him to chase, urging him on with calls of "After the Fish Wrap, boy! Chew up all of that bad, bad journalism into little pieces! Kill the nasty words!" Our thanks to Mort for making it possible for us to continue our exercises in thoughtful criticism.
at 5:07 AM
Friday, November 2, 2007
Viola Legume has some Nurve!
Writing about scary costumes when the very soul of our island is at stake. Just look at the photo I have attached, of a multi-family house using it's front yard as a repository for vegetable matter! It's outrageous. We're an island!
Everyone knows that 1973's Measure Acorn saved the city from being overrun by bushy-tailed rodents. This photo shows exactly why we worked so hard to pass it. Rabbit-hutch, apartment dwellings are known for leaving their vegetable matter just lying around their yards. Can you imagine what Alameda would have looked like had we not passed these Laws That Saved Our City?
at 5:16 AM
Thursday, November 1, 2007
On Friday, October 26, the Alameda Daily Noose and I recieved a very important press release marked "Embargoed until Nov. 1." Naturally, we were tempted to read it and publish it early, say, on Monday, October 29, caught up in the excitement like a four-year-old the night before Christmas; however, as a Noose Man in the Classic Sense I was honor-bound to put the press release in a Very Safe Place until November 1.
Unfortunately, it seems that somehow the Alameda Daily Noose and I managed to use the press release to wrap a delicious halibut we bought at that hippie grocery store. By the time we got around to frying up that fish, we weren't able to make out all that much of the press release, but as far as we can tell, some lady named Tracey, who comes from the Julia Park neighborhood of Santa Rosa, has been chosen as the new publisher and executive editor of the Alameda Puppy Trainer "newspaper."
Normally, the Alameda Daily Noose and I wouldn't trust anyone who is not from Alameda, but Tracey said something nice about us, so she must be different from most outsiders. Maybe she can teach a thing or two to those hacks at the Puppy Trainer, especially if she pays close attention to the level of journalistic integrity embodied in the Alameda Daily Noose and me. We just hope that after that long commute from Santa Rosa, she is not tempted to park in front our house. Good luck, Tracey!
at 5:08 AM