Culinary no-no #558: Where to pick up chicks

Culinary no-no began on Father’s Day 2007, a beautiful summer day, when I wrote about grilling brats. And eating brats. And topping those brats. I was inspired by my wife, Jennifer who, in my admittedly unscientific opinion, ruins brats by squirting ketchup on them. Other dining taboos quickly came to mind. The original idea was to take this concept only a few months, till the end of summer and then pull the plug. Then the unexpected happened. People started reading Culinary no-no. Lots of folks. So we keep doing the no-no.

Guys looking to meet gals. They naturally resort to  pick up lines. Recommended methods:

  1. Have a line ready. Start by knowing the first thing you’re going to say to the girl you have your eye on before you say it.
  2. Build the conversation.
  3. Use humor.
  4. Keep compliments subtle.
  5. Show your spine.
  6. Ask for her number.
  7. Prepare for a first date.

Sometimes it works.

But not always.

Think of pick up places and the usual suspects come to mind: bars, cocktail lounges, night clubs.

In my courting days I recall taking many a date to such spots but never ultimately dating anyone I first met at those establishments.

Where did I ask females out?

During my college days, one of many part-time jobs was an usher at the old  Performing Arts Center where I was surrounded by nice, young, pretty girls. I also worked at an elementary school and dated a teacher just a few years my senior for awhile. Even my church offered a successful dating opportunity.

In the past on my blogs I’ve referred to one of pop culture’s great philosophers: Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli.

The Happy Days episode, “A Date with Fonzie” broadcast on November 11, 1975, had Richie breaking up with his long time girlfriend, who subsequently gets mired in a dating rut. He naturally asks Fonzie for help who decides to take Richie to a place he claims Richie can meet and pick up girls.

Richie is in disbelief that Fonzie recommends the supermarket. Fonzie shops?

“No.” Little elves bring groceries to his door Fonzie replies.

Image result for happy days, fonzie, grocery shopping

The two head out to a supermarket where Richie learns part of Fonzie’s strategy when he sees a pretty girl is to push his cart in to her cart that opens the door for a date-inducing conversation.

A nervous Richie  gives it a try, but blindly rams his cart…into Fonzie’s.

The website Ask Men says there are specific locations ideal for meeting women besides bars: the gym, a music festival, art museum parties, the laundromat, volunteering , the shoe store, the bookstore, if you’re stuck in a line, and yes, Fonzie may have been onto something, a grocery store.

From Ask Men:

The grocery store is an exceptionally accessible place to pick up women, because there are so many things you can ask her about. “Have you tried these chocolate-coated gummy bears?” Or, “Do you know which aisle the pickles are in?” Not to mention, different supermarkets attract different types of women. There are the monster chains, the budget chains, the natural/organic indie stores or the monolith natural grocery chains. Know who you’re looking to attract, and then home in on them. Says dating expert and How About We master of ceremonies, Scott Alden, “Women who shop at Whole Foods are either a) successful enough to afford it or b) ambitious enough to pretend they are. Knowing enough about cheese/beer/cured meats to give a yoga-panted woman a few tips might just get you digits.”

Some reactions online to this revelation:

This goes back to the 70’s. Lots of singles esp women travel those grocery isles or the produce and always look for that guy who is getting the “healthy” food (Produce or even Chicken from meat section) or the “single guys” food like Stouffer’s. Its almost like a mating call. Good luck finding those ladies in the frozen aisles though, Those women know thats the no~no aisle and the one thing in a mans mind is as Neil Diamond says. “Turn on your Heartlight!!!” and I don’t men us guys brain on our shoulders thinking..

You always meet the person of your dreams while doing something average and boring (shopping, waking the dog, etc.)

People who try to pick a wife/husband from the bar or from a “designated social hangout” are doing it wrong.

never happened to me,the moment some guy tries to ask me if the pork loin i chose taste good i usually tell them they are for my pet anaconda at home who likes them raw and bloodied



That’s just sad


The grocery store phenomenon (albeit not all that new) just got major coverage by the Wall Street Journal:

When Bob Schneider goes out on a Friday night, he no longer heads to the local singles bar. Instead, he goes to the grocery store.

“I once dated a woman from the potato section at Mariano’s,” says Mr. Schneider, a 67-year-old semiretired, twice-divorced lobbyist in Oak Brook, Ill. “The next thing you know we’re at the wine bar and then we’re dating.”

Supermarkets—those havens of the not-so-scintillating chore of scouring numbered aisles, pushing carts and perusing produce—are finding a new identity as a social hub in communities. Parents now bring their children here to play, retirees gather for Bingo, and singles find romance.

Grocery stores are fulfilling the new role as traditional gathering spots, from shopping malls to social clubs like Lions Clubs and Rotary International, continue to shrink from decades-earlier peaks.

Stores have taken out aisles to provide more space for community mingling complete with couches, fireplaces, and restaurant-like services.

One married couple interviewed by the Wall Street Journal that met at a Norfolk, Virginia grocery talked about dancing in the aisle to music over the store’s loudspeaker.

I’m not sure how this trend is going over with millennials. Everyone the newspaper spoke with was middle-aged and older.

Customers who just want to get in and get out are irritated when they can’t get around the clusters gathered at a wine-tasting.

Retail experts told the newspaper they’re not sold on the approach to make stores appealing to people longing and searching for romance. That’s because if people are simply to hang out, how does that translate into sustainable revenue?

As far my list of the most serious no-no segments I’ve ever done, this one is definitely nowhere the top.

And if a supermarket can somehow provide true love,  who’s to find fault?

Maybe I’m just not cool enough (like the Fonz) or I’m not in need of a meet/meat market. Even if I was, this isn’t my cup of tea.


Chinese takeout has so much salt it should carry a ‘health warning,’ UK advocacy group says








Photos of the Week (03/18/17)

1) Students rally in front of the White House in Washington, D.C., on March 14, 2018. Students walked out of school to protest gun violence in the biggest demonstration yet of the student activism that has emerged in response to last month’s massacre of 17 people at Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Photo: Carolyn Kaster / AP

2) Students rally to protest gun violence outside the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., on March 14, 2018. Photo: Andrew Harnik / AP

3) Students make their way up East Washington Ave. toward the state Capitol during a walkout in Madison. Photo: Steve Apps / Wisconsin State Journal via AP

4) Students hold a ceremony at Brophy College Preparatory high school in Arizona as they gather to remember the 17 victims killed in Parkland and demand action regarding gun violence. Photo:  Ross D. Franklin / AP

5) Students hold up a banner with the names of the Florida school victims as they walk out of General McLane High School in Washington Township, Pennsylvania.  Photo: Christopher Millette / Erie Times-News via AP

6) A lone student wears an NRA shirt and waves a Trump flag as other students from Redondo Union High School gather outside their school in Redondo Beach, California. Photo: Andrew Gombert / EPA

7) In Berlin, Germany, schoolchildren place 740 teddy bears in front of the Konzerthaus to raise awareness of the 740,000 Syrian refugee children unable to attend school. Photo: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

8) In Istanbul, Turkey, a firefighter rescues a baby from the site of a gas explosion in the Fatih district. Photograph: Elif Öztürk/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

9) A child sleeps as he is carried in a suitcase in the town of Beit Sawa, eastern Ghouta, Syria, on March 15. Tens of thousands of terrified men, women and children streamed out on foot and in pick-up trucks Thursday from besieged enclaves on two fronts, fleeing bombings from the Syrian military near the capital, Damascus, and Turkish troops in the country’s north. Photo: Omar Sanadiki / Reuters

10) President Trump during a tour of U.S.-Mexico border wall prototypes near Otay Mesa Port of Entry in California .Photograph: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

11) President Donald Trump tosses a hat into the crowd as he arrives to speak at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego, California, on March 13. Photo: Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

12) Madeline Marinovich, 11, and her dog Whizzby play during a nor’easter in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on March 13, the third storm to strike the New England coast in two weeks. Photo:  Greg Marinovich / Reuters

13) French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife, Brigitte, at the Taj Mahal. Photograph: Ludovic Marin/AFP/Getty

14) In Windsor, England, the new Taj Mahal at Legoland Windsor resort is unveiled, one of several iconic additions to its Miniland attraction. Photo:  Steve Parsons/PA

15) Senior guard Jordan McCabe, the state’s recently named Mr. Basketball, drove left in the waning seconds and finished a layup with his right hand with 4 seconds to play that was the difference in a 76-74 victory over heartbroken Milwaukee Washington in the WIAA Division 2 state championship game at the Kohl Center Saturday. Photos: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

16) Knud Knudsen (left), 63, delivers the mail from the post office on Germany’s Pellworm Island to the tiny nearby Hallig Suederoog Islet on March 10, 2018. Hallig Suederoog Islet has a population of just three, and is located in the North Sea about 3.5 miles (6 kilometers) from Pellworm, near the coast of Schleswig-Holstein. Knudsen makes the trek two to three times a week by walking across the mudflats at low tide. He uses just an ordinary compass to navigate and, for emergency reasons, he carries his mobile phone but nothing more. Knudsen, born on Pellworm, works at the local coast guard and volunteers as the postman for Hallig Suederoog. His father was a lighthouse guard on the neighboring island of Amrum. “I am going to retire in two years from my regular job, but I will continue as a volunteer mailman! I just love being in the mudflats, listen[ing] to the screams of the birds, and just to enjoy (sic) the peace during my walks,” Knudsen said. Photo: Alexander Koerner / Getty

17) Druid Malachy, played by Ciaron Davies, reacts with a European eagle-owl named “Cracker” during the reenactment of the first landing of Saint Patrick in Ireland at Inch Abbey in Downpatrick, Northern Ireland, on March 11, 2018. Photo: Clodagh Kilcoyne / Reuters

18) The fountain on the South Lawn of the White House is green for the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Ireland’s Prime Minister, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, as well as St. Patrick’s Day in Washington, on March 15. Photo:  Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

19) Members of the Dungloe Band unit of Ireland take part in the St. Patrick’s Day parade on March 17, 2018, in New York. A big event since the mid-1800s, the parade has been a celebration of Irish culture and of Irish immigrants, who once faced nativist calls for their exclusion from the workforce, and from the country, when they began arriving in the city in huge numbers during the Irish Famine. Photo: Craig Ruttle / AP

20) Actor Mark Hamill meets Ireland’s President Michael D. Higgins and his wife Sabina at the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Dublin on March 17. Photo: Clodagh Kilcoyne / Reuters

21) Bagpipers with the NYPD Emerald Society walk past St. Patrick’s Cathedral as they take part in the St. Patrick’s Day parade March 17 in New York. Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar joined along as Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue came alive with the sound of bagpipes, trumpets and lots of green during the 257th running of the parade. Photo: Craig Ruttle / AP

22) Boats navigate the Chicago River shortly after it was dyed green in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 in Chicago. Dyeing the river has been a St. Patrick’s Day tradition in the city since 1962. Photo: Scott Olson / Getty Images

23) People stand at the Vilnia river that is colored green to celebrate the Irish festivity Saint Patrick’s Day in Vilnius, Lithuania, on March 17. Photo: Petras Malukas / AFP – Getty Images

24) A spectator shows off her green, white and orange eyelashes as the annual Saint Patrick’s day parade takes place on March 17 in Dublin. Dublin hosts the largest Saint Patrick’s day parade in the world with a route spanning 1.5 miles. The Irish annals for the fifth century date Patrick’s arrival in Ireland in the year 432 with the patron saint of Ireland’s remains believed to be buried at Down Cathedral in County Down. Photo:  Charles McQuillan / Getty Images

25) Kelsey Goran of Kennesaw, Georgia, left, kisses a sailor from the USS Alaska as he marches in the 194-year-old Savannah St. Patrick’s Day parade on March 17 in Savannah, Georgia. Photo: Stephen B. Morton / AP



UPDATE: Goodbye Goldmann’s, RIP Mitchell Street

Previously on This Just In, June 1, 2007:

Goldmann’s is closing after 111 years of business.

That’s very sad. It would be even sadder if Mitchell Street, once more popular and prestigious than Wisconsin Avenue, hadn’t died a long, long time ago.

I can say that because I grew up in the shadows of the golden domes of St. Stanislaus Church, the multi-storied Kunzelmann-Esser furniture store and the trolleys and streetcars. I lived the beauty, the buzz, the splendor of fabulous Mitchell Street. I have witnessed the slow, sad deterioration of a once proud street. Every Sunday, I return to Mitchell Street to attend mass at the only church I’ve ever belonged to, St. Anthony’s Catholic Church at 9th and Mitchell, directly across the street from Goldmann’s.

When I was a youngster, Mitchell Street was the ideal Main Street.

On 6th and Mitchell, on the corner was a Grebe’s Bakery. Their bakery wasn’t the greatest, but someone working there was a PR genius. In the window, every day, all day, was a spinning rotisserie with chickens, just dripping with natural juices. Many customers walked in wanting a cruller, but left with poultry.

Next door to Grebe’s was what everyone affectionately called, the “Sweet Shop.” Janet ran the “Sweet Shop,” just Janet, who had a long multi-syllabic Polish last name. I called her Janet.

You talk about a kid’s dream. The “Sweet Shop” had EVERYTHING! You walked in and there were only two long narrow corridors. In the middle of the store, some shelves with the basic packaged grocery goods. I never paid much attention. On the left as you walked in were Janet’s freezers, stocked with ice cream, and ice cream, and ice cream. Keep walking and you get to the front counter, where you checked out. Behind the counter, honest to goodness malted milk machines and a big refrigerator with every soda imaginable.

On the right side of the store, okay, I’m dating myself, a large, long glass case with “penny” candy. That’s right. “Penny” candy. If you had a quarter (and you probably didn’t because as a kid the most you had was probably a dime) you could pick out 25 different one-cent pieces of candy, and Janet would patiently and painstakingly place each morsel into a small brown paper bag. After each selection, Janet would tell you how much you had left to spend.

Janet sold the store a long time ago and now lives in New Berlin, not far from the childhood home of my wife’s best friend. Janet still talks with my mom often about the good ‘ol days.

Next to the “Sweet Shop,” was the Juneau Theater. When I was 6, I saw King Kong vs. Godzilla there and was afraid to go home. All I could think of was some giant reptile attacking me. I also saw a bunch of Elvis movies at the Juneau and had my first experience with Jujubes and Good and Plenty and all those other cool movie candies. Oh, and the idiot movie usher that flashed his light on you if you had your feet up on the empty seat in front of you. (Jerk!)

Down the block was Anton’s (Call me Max) men’s shop. Anton or Max (I never figured out who) was 5 foot 5, 150 pounds and wore a bird feeder on his head. I had no idea that when I’d ride my bike on Mitchell Street around his shop, he’d come out and keep an eye on me and report back to my mom.

There was Piasecki’s Record shop right across the alley from Anton’s. At Piasecki’s, I had one of the greatest experiences of my life. (Granted, I was only 6 or 7). My older brother took me, and to this day I’m not sure if he did it willingly or was instructed by mom, to Piasecki’s.

I remember it like it was yesterday. The glass door opened, and 1, 2, 3 steps down to a long, long, narrow aisle of stacks and stacks of wax. My brother helped me find, “Devil in Disguise,” by Elvis Presley. I walked up to the counter and took out what I believe was about 30 cents to pay Mr. Piasecki, who sported an accountant’s visor and a cigar whose aroma filled the store along with all that wonderful vinyl.

I seem to recall a Holzman’s Fur store on that block. The owner had curly white hair, huge black horn-rimmed glasses, a moustache, and a face that never smiled. I didn’t like him at all. I made sure I pedaled extra hard when I rode my bike past his window with the dead animal around the woman dummy’s neck, biting its own tail. Mr. Piasecki’s cigar was far more appealing.

The famous, “Irv the Working Man’s Friend,” was down the block, right across the street from Kunzelmann-Esser, a furniture store unrivaled in all of Wisconsin. They had a walkway inside the front windows that allowed you to walk inside (or in my case, ride my bike) without actually entering the store.

On 8th and Mitchell, Mayer-Krom, a men’s store my mom always dragged me to when she had to buy a gift for dad. My uncle Claude designed the displays in their windows.

On 9th and Mitchell, my parish church to this day, St. Anthony’s, a church so beautiful it brings tears to first time visitors. Across the street was the original Knight’s Popcorn. After school you’d hit Knight’s and hope you had enough for a soda and a bag of corn. If you were lucky, you had enough left over for a Mallo-Cup.

Up Mitchell on 10th was the “dime store,” officially known as F.W. Woolworth’s. My future sister-in-law, Bernie, actually worked there. I’d park and lock my bike in the alley behind Woolworth’s every week and run down the steps to the basement where they had the week’s top 100 45’s all in a row, ready for purchase. I’d smile when my favorite records climbed the charts. I’d moan when a favorite started to drop. Why wasn’t I buying my 45’s at Piasecki’s? Piasecki’s had become a Mautz Paint store, and I lost all interest.

Next to Woolworth’s was the ultimate, Gimbel’s Schusters Department Store, floor after floor of really neat stuff, like the Tonka trucks in the toy department.

Kiddy corner from Gimbel’s Schuster’s was the Grand, a high class women’s clothing store where my godmother Auntie Anne once worked.

You had your Walgreen’s and Meurer’s Bakery and George Webb’s and an Oriental restaurant that mom said had the best egg foo yung, and a few “sausage stores,” and if you didn’t like what they were showing at the Juneau, you walked a few blocks to the Granada or the Modjeska theaters.

In the summer and fall, it was a must to hit the Farmer’s Market on Saturday’s where Mitchell intersected with Forest Home.

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention this unique bit of history from this special neighborhood. One block south of Mitchell is Maple Street. On the corner of 8th and Maple stood a single story red brick building, Graeven’s Bakery. This was the real McCoy. Grebe’s sold rotisserie chickens and mediocre donuts. Graeven’s was the cat’s pajamas of pastries.

But Graeven’s would do something unheard of on Friday nights in the summer months. All week long, the bakery would close up for the day around 5:00. Then on Friday nights in the summer, when the sun was down and evening darkness had arrived, a side door to the bakery on S. 8th Street would fly open. A baker clad in long white apron and white hat, full of flour would open that door to see a long line of people waiting in the hot, humid sticky night. These people should have been home sitting in front of a fan or parked near air conditioning. Instead, crazy south siders stood in line to get a chance to walk inside a hot steamy bakery to buy the only product on sale at 9:00……………hot rolls. You stood in line hoping and praying they wouldn’t run out before it was your turn.

My mother proudly talks about how she walked home with the bag of rolls held closely across her chest to keep them warm. When Mom arrived back home, though it was ungodly hot in the house, out came the butter, and we ate rolls.

Mitchell Street is, today, a busy street, but it’s nowhere near the same as it once was. There is an agency called the Mitchell Street Advancement Association whose job it is to promote and talk about the street in the most positive of terms. About 5 years ago, in the ultimate of “spin,” it announced Mitchell Street was enjoying a “renaissance.”

Please don’t insult me or my intelligence.

Not one of the stores I mentioned remains. There are no quality stores left. On the steps of the church I still attend every Sunday, a man was riddled with bullets. He bled to death in the arms of the parish pastor. At my church, the outdoor grotto on Mitchell Street is tarnished by garbage and litter tossed by irreverent and disrespectful punks. There are news stories of knifings and shootings, crime that was once unheard of on Mitchell.

Today, people who once did all their shopping on Mitchell Street drive by and keep driving. They reminisce and feel great pain and sorrow to see what has happened to this once wonderful street.

So Goldmann’s is closing. Yes, it’s sad. But it was bound to happen. Everything else that was truly great died on Mitchell Street a long time ago. Goldmann’s just happened to survive a lot longer.
—This Just In, June 1, 2007

The update.

The old Goldmann’s building is now the Gerald Ignace Indian Health Center. More information here.


Hillary trashes WI voters, the president’s affairs, paying for the wall, and DST

If you missed last week’s highly interesting reads, here they are.

Today’s highly interesting read (03/16/18): In praise of the hated daylight saving time

Today’s highly interesting read (03/15/18): Don’t Let Liberals Win By Making You Care

Today’s highly interesting read (03/14/18): Will WI Dems Repudiate Clinton’s Labeling of State Voters?

Today’s highly interesting read (03/13/18): Cutting welfare to illegal aliens would pay for Trump’s wall

Today’s highly interesting read (03/12/18): Not liberal enough

Week-ends (03/17/18)

A look back at the people and events that made news the past week. Week-ends is a regular weekly feature of This Just In…


Lindsey Chisholm

Evoni Williams

Emily Dial



The news media

Amber Schmunk


“We have a lousy wall over here now, but at least it stops 90, 95 percent. When we put up the real wall, we’re going to stop 99 percent. Maybe more than that.”
President Donald Trump after inspecting prototypes of the border wall

“First of all, I think the border– did you see it? How high it is … I mean, really? In a civilized society, we do something like that. As obnoxious as it is– You know, that’s a community there with a border running through it. Okay, we have a difference of opinion that, but a wall that big separating people? I mean really?”
Nancy Pelosi

“Democrat candidates might be sketchy about admitting that, especially in more 50-50 seats, but of course they’re going to impeach Donald Trump. Do you think that MSNBC or CNN would allow for anything less? And by the way, there aren’t that many Blue Dog Democrats left in Congress. They are radical leftist, socialist Democrats. They are like Nancy Pelosi. They are far-left people.

“That’s who’s winning their primaries, and do you think that the far-left ‘Resist’ movement base of the Democrat Party would accept anything other than impeachment?

“If we don’t keep the House, we lose the opportunity to enact the next stage of great things for the economy; the reform that’s needed to continue this growth in the long run. The whole government shuts down and Trump can’t do anything in the last two years because we’re in an impeachment battle. That would be just heartbreaking for us.”
Wisconsin Congressman Sean Duffy during an interview on WISN

“This bridge was about goodness, not sadness. Now we’re feeling immense sadness, uncontrollable sadness. And our hearts go out to all those affected, their friends and their families.”
Florida International University president Mark Rosenberg, after a newly installed pedestrian bridge collapsed, killing six people and injuring nine

“People don’t understand that Hollywood is a very violent place. You see a lot of people who never work again. For even speaking up the whole thing is that they cut off your head so that the next person doesn’t speak.”
Actor Terry Crews


Airline travel


Kids who rallied in support of the 2nd Amendment, or who didn’t walk out


School walkouts


Well-timed vasectomies put lots of guys on the couch for March Madness basketball

The Barking Lot – America’s Finest Dog Blog (03/17/18)

The Barking Lot is a regular weekly feature of This Just In…Written by my lovely wife, Jennifer and me.  It opens with the weekend dog walking forecast followed by the main blog from dog lover, Jennifer. Then it’s DOGS IN THE NEWS and our close. Enjoy!

THE WEEKEND DOG-WALKING FORECAST: We grade the weather outlook for taking your pet outdoors.

TODAY:  Partly cloudy. High of 45. “C”

SUNDAYSunny. High of 53. “B”

Now, here’s my lovely wife, Jennifer, with this week’s main blog.

March is a spectacular month for the Fischer family.  And it’s not because Kevin might win a March Madness pool.  Naturally we root for Notre Dame and even if they’re eliminated early (or don’t make it to the NCAA tourney at all) we still love our Irish players.  But 2/3 of the household don’t really watch basketball.

No, the third month of the year is full of excitement & joy for many other reasons…  Kyla’s birthday, Kevin’s birthday, and a whole lot of Irish events.  As a proud Cashel Dennehy dancer, Kyla marches in the Milwaukee St. Patrick’s Day parade.  She also participates in Schools Day which allows students to travel to four different schools to display their talents and spread the love of Irish dance & culture.  And of course there’s the shopping.

HUH?  SHOPPING???!!!  Uh, yes.  Unless you’ve been living under a (sham)rock you’re probably aware of a one-day-only Irish extravaganza.  We tune in bright & early, and keep it on all day. 

I’ve been the lucky recipient of several sweaters as well as pieces of jewelry.  The items that they offer are usually exclusive to QVC.  They feature the artisans on air to showcase their crafts and we marvel at the quality and talent displayed.

Despite a beautiful and impressive selection of clothing, jewelry, and home décor items there is one category that is always woefully missing.  I don’t understand how such a popular home shopping emporium could miss a golden opportunity for so many potential customers.

I can already imagine the flood of callers talking to a canine lover similar to what David Venable does for QVC culinary items…

“Let’s go to our phone lines and welcome Kari from Milwaukee.  Kari, how are you today?”

“I’m fine, how are YOU doing?”

“I’m just great, thanks.  So, are you shopping for yourself or someone else today?”

“Well, I’ve bought so many for friends and family that this year I’ve decided to finally treat myself.”

“Great!  And what breed did you finally decide on?”

“It was a really difficult decision because they’re all so beautiful.  But I finally chose the Soft Coated Wheaton Terrier.”

“Fantastic!  I’m sure you’ll get years of enjoyment with the little darling.  What a special way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  Best of luck to you and thanks for calling!”

“Thank you so much.  I’m so excited to finally become a pet parent!”

Now before any card-carrying PETA member gets their vegan undies in a bundle over my “suggestion” I hope they are at least bright enough to recognize satire.

Seriously though.  If you could dial-a-doggie, which one would you choose?  Each Irish dog breed has so many remarkable qualities I probably would purchase a two-pack and use the “easy pay” system!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all the Barking Lot readers!
—-Jennifer Fischer

Thanks Jennifer! Nice work!

Jennifer mentioned the NCAA basketball tournament. The entire sports world is buzzing today after Maryland Baltimore County became the first No. 16 seed in 135 tries to defeat a No. 1 seed, knocking off Virginia Friday night, 74-54. They’re calling it the biggest upset in college basketball history.

Maryland Baltimore County’s nickname?

Image result for image, photo, picture, logo, mascot, Maryland Baltimore County

The Retrievers.

Time now for DOGS IN THE NEWS, canines that made headlines the past week.

Dog survives after being shot twice in abdomen, giving birth.

Three-legged golden retriever shows plight of puppy mill dogs.

Golden Retriever service dog is trained to Snuggle His Owner’s Seizures Away.

Is sleeping in the same bed with your dog a good idea?

Dogs can get a runner’s high, too.

Good stuff here. For the Love of Dogs: Meet the Pet Lovers Who are Crazy for Canines.

Stan Lee’s Dog Goes Missing — and is Rescued by former NFL player Jim Brown.



Yogi, a dog with a human-looking face, sends Internet into frenzy.

Oh, and these, from last Saturday’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in downtown Milwaukee.

There was this dog heading our way.

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing, sky and outdoor

It was Molly who made a beeline for… me!

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, dog, tree, outdoor and nature

Wait. That can’t possibly be an authentic photo. I don’t like dogs, remember.

We close as we always do with our closing video.

It was the dog story of the week.

A family says a United Airline flight attendant demanded their dog be stored in an overhead bin during an approximately three-hour flight.

The airline called the incident a “tragic accident.”

Opinion: Why didn’t anyone stand up for that poor dog?

Another dog story. It also involves United Airlines. But the ending is not the same.


Akita dogs, which hail from the snowy mountainous region in the north of Japan, are big, fluffy, and incredibly loyal. Here’s a visit to the home of these lovable pooches in Ōdate city, thanks to Street View.


That’s it for this week.

Thanks for stopping by.

We kindly ask that you please share with other dog lovers you know.

See ya, BARK, next Saturday morning!

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, outdoor


Goodnight everyone, and have a GREEEEEEEEEEN weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

You’re going to see lots of folks wearing green this weekend. Big day for the Irish on Saturday, you know.

But hey, Kev, didn’t you do GREEEEEEEEEN music last week?

Well, that was green, green, green. This week we’re GREEEEEEEEEEN.

To explain, tonight the theme has nothing to do with St. Patrick’s Day but we’ve found some selections that feature the main color of the proud Irish. All good and green stuff so let’s get started!

The above 1947 award-winning film is about two beautiful daughters of a wealthy merchant who fall in love with the same handsome young man. Since  he favors the gentle modesty of Marguerite, her not so very nice sister Marianne persuades him to seek his fortune abroad. He settles down doing business in New Zealand with a friend and sends for Marguerite to join him. But he drunkenly addresses his proposal to sensual Marianne. When the wrong sister meets up with her husband-to-be and his partner, a bitter rivalry is provoked between the men for Marianne’s love.

In 1958 trumpeter Miles Davis recorded “On Green Dolphin Street,” a song that was written in 1947 for the film, and it became a jazz standard.

Here’s the Grammy-winning Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band.

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“There is a certain satisfaction and energy that comes from playing the horn – a feeling that I am really in the moment.”

Herb Alpert said that back in 2013 as he was about to release a new album, “Steppin’ Out.” A Grammy-award winner, the album features Alpert on trumpet and vocals, and his wife Lani Hall on vocals. There are lots of classics, but original recordings as well written by Alpert and Jeff Lorber. Here’s one of the originals that has a very cool groove.

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Alpert has had an amazing career: Five #1 hits, nine GRAMMY Awards, fifteen Gold albums, fourteen Platinum albums and he’s sold over 72 million records.

He will turn 83 on March 31.

This next tune helped America get through WWII. Originally written in Spanish in 1929, it was translated into English two years later and was a big hit for Helen O’Connell, Bob Eberly and the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra.

A few decades ago swing music was rather trendy. John Williams and the Boston Pops Orchestra took advantage devoting an entire album to the genre. This track was a departure,  a lovely arrangement, the type you’d expect from Williams and this ensemble.

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“Green Eyes” is one of those really nice old songs that clearly fits into the “They don’t write them like used to” category.  So how about we hear the lyrics?

Barry Manilow with the late Rosemary Clooney…

Your green eyes with their soft lights
Your eyes that promise sweet nights
Bring to my soul a longing
A thirst for love divine

In dreams I seem to hold you
To find you and enfold you
Our lips meet and our hearts, too
With a thrill so sublime

Those cool and limpid green eyes
A pool where in my love lies
So deep that in my searching
For happiness, I fear

That they will ever haunt me
All through my life they’ll taunt me
But will they ever want me, green eyes?
Make my dreams come true

And while we’re on the subject of green eyes, this next song was a #3 hit in 1970 for a band out of Denver.

Lead singer Jerry Corbetta said it was about his girlfriend at the time named Kathy.

Originally the group called itself “Chocolate Hair.” However managers were skittish about possible racial overtones. Instead, they went with “Sugarloaf,” the name of a local ski resort.

They chose “Sugarloaf” after a local Colorado ski resort.

Corbetta sings and also provides the organ solo on the long version featured on their album.

Sugarloaf was not a one-hit wonder. In 1975 they scored a top ten hit with “Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You.”

That’s it for this week.


Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

We close in a frenzy.

Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov gave us “The Flight of the Bumble Bee” from The Tale of Tsar Saltan.

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In the 1960’s trumpeter Al Hirt played his rendition of the Rimsky-Korsakov composition on the theme from the Green Hornet TV show.

Here’s the Riku Niemi Orchestra featuring Tero Lindberg on trumpet in a performance modeled after the Al Hirt version.

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Friday Night Forgotten Oldie: She stole her biggest hit from opera

Before we get to this week’s oldie, please, bear with me.

I’m no fan of opera.

One of the best jobs a young guy could have while working his way through college was an usher at the old Performing Arts Center, now known as The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.

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Oh the stories I could tell.

What a great time that was. Fortunately I was exposed to a wide variety of genres, and that included opera.

Purists will bristle but I’m being brutally honest when I concede I simply couldn’t stand the yelling and screaming, and the condescending, arrogant patrons.

Every couple of weeks the ushers went through a scheduling process with an alphabet system. You were given a list of upcoming shows, dates and times and for each show you filled in a letter.

“A” meant you were definitely available and wanted to work.

“B” meant you’d prefer not to work but would work if needed.

“C” meant you were unavailable and couldn’t (or didn’t want to) work.

You were only allowed a minimal number of “C” selections.

I always, always, put a “C” next to the opera performance on the form.

If you think the stereotypical opera singer looks like…

You’d be wrong.

That’s 46-year old Anna Yuryevna Netrebko, a Russian Austrian operatic soprano famous for her lustrous voice, dramatic characterizations, and alluring presence on stage.

When Netrebko soured on hopes of becoming an actress she changed directions, and pursued a career in opera. In 1990 she entered the St. Petersburg State Conservatory (then the Leningrad Conservatory). While a student there she scrubbed floors at St. Petersburg’s famed Mariinsky Theatre . That gave her the opportunity to watch rehearsals of operas and ballets for free.

Listen very carefully to the “Musetta’s Waltz” melody from La Bohème by Puccini, especially the very beginning and the final 50 seconds or so.

Rock and roll had taken over the country in 1959. Even so, a young, husky-voiced Della Reese, borrowing from opera and appealing to teen’s parents, soared to #2 on the singles chart.

Last November Reese died at the age of 86.