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So I Was Out On The Interwebs When This Award Came At Me

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was perusing some blogs recently and discovered that he’d been nominated for the Liebster Award. He was nominated by his virtual friend, Professor Mondo. One day your Maximum Leader hopes to meet the Professor in real life, by the by…

So… It seems that your Maximum Leader must reveal of himself for this whole Liebster Award thing to work. So if he slips out of his familiar to you all 3rd person narration, you must forgive him in advance.

First up… 11 random tibits about your Maximum Leader:

1) He was recently advised by his doctor to “cut back on carbs.” Your Maximum Leader has effectively only seriously “cut back” on one carb. That carb is ice cream. He’s not had ice cream (or a milkshake or similar ice creamy foodstuff) in a few months.

2) Did your Maximum Leader mention that he REALLY REALLY loves ice cream? He should have if he didn’t.

3) Your Maximum Leader is addicted to a game on his phone called “Kingdoms of Camelot: Battle for the North” by a group called Kabam.

4) In the “Kingdoms of Camelot” game he just mentioned above, his screen name is Lord Blackadder. He chose the name Lord Blackadder because he loves the old Rowan Atkinson show “Blackadder.” Your Maximum Leader was told about the show many decades ago, but only got around in the past few years to watching all of them thanks to Amazon Prime. Although your Maximum Leader thought he’d like the first season the best (which was the one he’d actually seen some episodes of years ago), but in fact he thinks the second season is the best. (The second season follows Blackadder during the reign of Elizabeth I.)

5) In the same vein as Blackadder (to wit: a person on the fringes of famous historical persons or events), your Maximum Leader is a great fan of George MacDonald Fraser’s “Flashman” books.

6) Your Maximum Leader is trying to teach himself to stop putting two spaces after a period when he types. It is a problem when he is on Twitter as that extra space uses up a valuable character. (Follow your Maximum Leader on Twitter @maximumleader!) In case you were asking why this is a thing… Your Maximum Leader is of an age when he didn’t take a “keyboarding” class in high school but took a “typing” class in high school. He learned to type on an IBM Selectric Typewriter. He was taught that you always put two spaces after a period to make the sentence breaks easier to spot.

7) Your Maximum Leader owns a kilt. Which he bought in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 1985. He’s had it altered once. He trots it out about once a year.

8 ) Your Maximum Leader owns more shoes now than he has at any other time in his adult life. (2 pairs of boots. 3 pairs of “good” dress/formal shoes. 1 pair of saddle shoes - which seem more dressy than casual but not really dressy. 2 pairs of nice shoes for work. 2 pairs of sneakers.)

9) Your Maximum Leader cures his own bacon, grinds his own sausage and cures ham - but not “country” ham. It disappoints him that he’s not done a good country ham. He doesn’t have a place where he controls temperature and humidity well enough. Or barring temp and humidity control, he doesn’t have a large enough vessel to completely pack the ham in salt.

10) Your Maximum Leader owns a few guns, but he doesn’t own a shotgun. (But he really wants one.)

11) Your Maximum Leader once had a conversation with the late Senator Edward Kennedy. In a men’s room. In the Kennedy Center.

There you go. Pretty random…

Now for questions from the good Professor…

1. If you could give a really painful (but not permanent — we’re not awful people) charley horse to anyone in the world without fear of retribution, who would it be?

Your Maximum Leader isn’t sure that he is worked up enough about anyone to want to give them a charley horse. He thinks that Vladimir Putin could use one, just on principal. Plus, it seems like ole Vlad doesn’t have to take a lot of abuse from anyone. (Certainly not from any Western leader recently for sure…)

2. DC or Marvel?

This is sort of tough. When your Maximum Leader was younger he read some DC comics. He was a fan of Batman comics. He is a fan of most of the Batman films. He enjoyed Superman comics when he was young. But he is not a fan of any of the recent Superman movies. Intellectually, Superman is the most interesting and should have the most potential. But no one can seem to translate that to the screen. Your Maximum Leader had high hopes for “Man of Steel” but it fell way short of expectations.

That being said, after looking through some boxes in the attic, it appears as though your Maximum Leader owned and kept more Marvel comics than he did DC. He still has many copies of “Tomb of Dracula,” “GI Joe,” “John Carter, Warlord of Mars,” “Conan the Barbarian” and some others. All Marvel titles.

So… Your Maximum Leader supposes he is a Marvel guy.

3. Who would you cast to play the lead in a biopic of you?

This is a toughie. Your Maximum Leader had a whole bunch of actors in mind. The list contained actors that your Maximum Leader thought could capture his essential qi. (He didn’t try to think of an actor that resembled him physically - that would be a fruitless endeavor…) Among the actors that bounced around in your Maximum Leader’s mind were: Gary Oldman, John Malkovich, Christian Bale, Michael Sheen, or Edward Norton. (Those last two by the by happen to be the same age as your Maximum Leader.)

But in the end it was none of those fine actors…

In the final analysis, should a biopic of your Maximum Leader’s life be made, he would like to be played by Stephen Fry. Stephen Fry is a great actor and all around fine human being. And in the end all we can hope to be is a fine human being. You can check out Stephen Fry’s website here; or follow him on Twitter here.

4. Preferred pizza crust — Thin? Pan? Whole wheat? Other?

Generally speaking, thin. But from time to time he craves a good Chicago style pizza. Not too often. But it has been known to happen.

5. Is there a song that makes you hit the channel change/shuffle button as soon as it starts? What is it?

Almost anything my 9 year old son has purchased in the past 6 months.

6. What’s your favorite “guilty pleasure” movie?

Very tough. Recently it has been Disney’s John Carter. But over time it has been Bruce Campbell’s Army of Darkness.

7. Bluegrass or World Music?

Bluegrass.

8. What’s the most unusual thing in your fridge?

Your Maximum Leader doesn’t think that he has anything particularly unusual in his fridge. He keeps the fridge pretty clean and goes through victuals regularly. If by unusual you might mean something “out of the ordinary” then it might be a stash of the greatest candy bar in the world… The Cadbury Crunchie bar. (Buy them here.)

9. What have I got in my pocket?

Front or back pocket? Hummm….

As for me… The contents of my pockets on a typical day (such as today) are: iPhone, handkerchief, wallet (from the Scuola del Cuoio as it turns out - a lovely and thoughtful gift), my car key, and a key ring (containing home and work keys).

As an aside… The key ring on which your Maximum Leader’s home & work keys hang has a brass oval fob that reads “10 Downing Street, London”. He has had that key fob since he bought it in London on his first trip there in 1985. Also… In his wallet he still has a folded up One Pound note from that same trip to the UK in 1985. So… For 29 years, your Maximum Leader has carried a One Pound note in his wallet…

10. What topic is most likely to make you start talking as your friends say, “Now you’ve done it.”?

Probably something about Elvis or Winston Churchill. Or possibly curing bacon…

11. What question were you hoping I’d ask you, but I didn’t?

In the tradition of “Pulp Fiction,” are you a Beatles man or an Elvis man? Your Maximum Leader is, very much, an Elvis man… Indeed his iTunes library shows 745 Elvis songs and 167 Beatles songs.

Now comes the nomination portion of our program…

Your Maximum Leader will nominate the following blogs:

His buddy Kevin.

Bill of Bill’s Comments.

Robbo of TPSAYE

Elisson

Big Stupid Tommy

FLG of Fear & Loathing in Georgetown

Skippy

Mrs P

Joan of Primordial Slack

The Amazing Ben of Badass of the Week

Eric of Straight White Guy

And here are the questions from your Maximum Leader:

1) What food do you most resemble - physically?

2) Assume that everyone has an ability that they could call their “superpower” what would yours be?

3) What is the earliest memory you have?

4) A good day would be…

5) A bad day would be…

6) Cameras on every single portable electronic device. Blessing or bane?

7) Favorite Pixar character? Why?

8 ) Tell me about one deeply held belief of yours that has evolved or changed over time.

9) Your favorite word?

10) If I met you at a dinner party, what would you NOT like me to ask you?

11) Tell me something I don’t know.

Question #9 is courtesy of Bernard Pivot and James Lipton.

Questions #10 & #11 are courtesy of one of your Maximum Leader’s favorite podcasts, The Dinner Party Download.

Carry on.

Follow your Maximum Leader on the Tweety: @maximumleader

June 1982 Pt 2

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader commends to you the second part of Movie Guy Steve’s post on June 1982. This part contains his review of one of your Maximum Leader’s all-time favorite movies, Blade Runner.

One day, perhaps, your Maximum Leader will muse on Blade Runner. He doubts that he could do better than so many others. But, he may just choose to add his voice to the chorus.

BTW, Professor Mondo (unintentionally probably) is touching on this little meme in his post On Movies and Suction. In the post he posits that 1939 is likely the best year for films in the history of film. It is compelling to think about. Your Maximum Leader admits that until just now he’d never thought of it.

Your Maximum Leader isn’t sure that he’d be willing to put 1980 as the year that even “good” movies started to suck. But now that the Professor mentions it, your Maximum Leader will have to start thinking about it…

Carry on.

All the cool kids are doing it

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader is sure he’s taken this test before. Furthermore he is pretty sure his results haven’t changed too much. He is a little too lazy to do a site search and find the last time he posted his results. Indeed, your Maximum Leader wasn’t going to take the test at all, since if you’ve hung around this site for any length of time it is likely that you know what your Maximum Leader’s political views are (more or less). But since all the cool kids like Prof Mondo, Skippy and Kevin are doing it…

You are a

Social Liberal
(70% permissive)

and an…

Economic Conservative
(80% permissive)

You are best described as a:

Libertarian


Link: The Politics Test on Ok Cupid
Also: The OkCupid Dating Persona Test

Carry on.

Listmania, Day 4

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader decided to go silly for day four of his listmania trip. He sees that his readers want a list with women… So here it is… A revised edition of the list that started it all.

THE TOP TEN MOST DESIRABLE WOMEN IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD - EVAH!
(In no particular order and excluding the lovely Mrs Villain - who is always my number one.)

1. Helen of Troy
2. Sophia Loren
3. Jennifer Love Hewitt
4. Olivia de Havilland
5. Vivian Leigh
6. Salma Hayek
7. Ornella Muti
8. Summer Glau
9. Irene Langhorne
10. Grace Kelly

Honorable mentions: Carole Bouquet, Raquel Welch, Katharine Hepburn, Diahann Carroll, Hedy Lamarr, Veronica Lake, Catherine Deneuve, Monica Bellucci, Eva Green, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Margaret Thatcher, Deborah Kerr, Marilyn Monroe, Queen Rania of Jordan, and Christie Brinkley.

There you go. Have at it…

Carry on.

UPDATE FROM YOUR MAXIMUM LEADER: Damn… So. Many. Names. So. Little. Memory.

Even more for the list: Ingrid Bergman, Parker Posey, Ava Gardner, Evelyn Nesbit, Mary-Louise Parker, Mara Carfagna and probably many others… (Others including Grace Thorsen…)

Oh yes… Your Maximum Leader has no real methodology for assessing desireability in private life across so much time and distance. Indeed he’ll concede that many of those on this list are probably not the type of person you’d want to spend lots of time with… He’s talking about base desire…

Listmania Day 3

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader promised you a variation on an old familiar list. Well here tis.

Your Maximum Leader knows that every “President’s Day” (known to civilized Americans as “Washington’s Birthday”) that lists abound enumerating the “Greatest Presidents of the United States.” Well… Your Maximum Leader has decided to enumerate the worst Presidents of the United States. Here you are:

THE 10 WORST PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

(This is an ordered list with #1 being the worst President in the history of our Republic.)

10. George W. Bush
9. Franklin Pierce
8. Zachary Taylor
7. Millard Filmore
6. Jimmy Carter
5. James Buchanan
4. Woodrow Wilson
3. Richard Nixon
2. Ulysses Grant
1. Warren Harding

Honestly, this was a very hard list to put together. One has so many choices it is sometimes hard to split hairs. (And although Richard Nixon is on this list, you very well could put him on a list of the greatest presidents as well. His presidency is schizophrenic that way. So many great accomplishments and so many terrible mistakes.) Your Maximum Leader, in all honesty, feels that although he has just left office we can judge George W. Bush’s presidency negatively. Your Maximum Leader is basing his rating there on the basis of fiscal policy and mishandling early on of Iraq. Your Maximum Leader voted for Bush (twice) and can’t say he regets either of those votes. But in the end, Bush just messed things up.

Carry on.

Listmania controversy! Woo hoo!

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader sees that his list today has elicited some feedback from our addle-brained friend FLG. FLG writes, “FLG fears that the Maximum Leader has taken to blogging and smoking crack while drunk in the midst of an acid flashback after being hit on the head with a sledgehammer repeatedly because he’s losing his senses.” FLG then reprinted your Maximum Leader’s list of the 10 greatest rulers in the history of the world and states:

FLG can countenance Augustus at number 2, but this is the correct order:
1. Alexander the Great. King of Macedonia. Son of Ammon. Conquer of the Known World. Biggest Badass In History.
2. Augustus Caesar. First emperor of the Roman Empire.

Well… What can your Maximum Leader say save that FLG is obviously delusional and in need of serious professional help. (NB to Mrs FLG: Your Maximum Leader can recommend both caring and helpful professionals that can care for your husband. They can also administer ECT in doses that will bring FLG around.) It is plainly evident that Augustus Ceasar is a greater ruler, by the criteria used, than Alexander. Unfortunately for FLG length of rule, issues of taxation, building roads and public buildings do count towards being the greatest ruler in the history of the world.

Of course Alexander the Great would be the greatest ruler in the history of the world - if one looked only at the period from the dawn of civilization until about 30 BC. (That Augustus visited the tomb of Alexander doesn’t amount to much. Alexander’s body was a tourist attraction and many lesser people visited. Your Maximum Leader seems to remember that it was another royal tourist who actually wound up destroying the body of Alexander. Wasn’t it the Byzantine Empress Irene who demanded that a small candle be put into the sarcophagus of the King so she could see the body better and it caught fire and burned?)

After careful review of the comments left on FLG’s post your Maximum Leader would agree to two revisions to his list. Your Maximum Leader would gladly take Ancient’s recommendation and remove Louis XIV in favor of Henry II of England. As readers here would note, your Maximum Leader has Henry II on a permanent place of honor in the “Pantheon of Greatness” on the top right of this blog. Your Maximum Leader was debating Henry vs Louis but decided to put Louis on the list because he thought to put Henry on the list might be due to a native bias your Maximum Leader has towards Henry. Your Maximum Leader isn’t sure about Ancient’s other suggestion about Alfred the Great. Certainly Alfred’s personal contributions to the English language can’t be underestimated as a cultural contribution. Also he was a great unifier/conqueror. In comparison to Henry, Alfred’s kingdom was smallish. (Then again, Henry inherited or married into much of his kingdom.) Your Maximum Leader will have to say that Alfred doesn’t likely make the cut.

Then there are the suggestions of Arethusa and Alpheus. The first suggestion is replacing Alexander the Great with Philip II of Macedonia. Without Philip laying the ground-work Alexander might not have amounted to anything. Your Maximum Leader sees the wisdom of this recommendation. But in the end, it was Alexander who did the conquering and not Philip. That puts Alexander on the list and would likely keep Philip off the list.

The really great suggestion that Arethusa puts forward is Sulieman the Magnifcent. Sulieman didn’t make the list probably because of the pro-Byzantine and anti-Ottoman tendencies of your Maxmium Leader. Indeed, Heraclius makes the list even though your Maximum Leader keeps thinking to himself that if Heraclius had spent a little more time subduing the arabian penninsula… Well… History could have been much changed…

In light of what he’s read here is a revised list:

THE TOP 10 GREATEST RULERS IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD (revised)

1. Augustus Caesar. First Emperor of Rome. Creator of an empire that lasted in the west for 450 years (and in the east for 1453 years). Builder of roads, aqueducts, temples, baths, forums, and great cities. He ruled his empire for 44 years.

The runners up in no particular order:

Qin Shihuang. First emperor of China.
Tokugawa Ieyasu. Shogun of Japan.
Peter I of Russia. Tsar of Russia.
Rameses II. Pharaoh of Egypt.
Charlemagne. Holy Roman Emperor and King of the Franks.
Alexander the Great. King of Macedona.
Kublai Khan. Emperor of China.
Henry II (Plantagenet). King of England.
Sulieman the Magnifcent. Emperor of the Ottoman Empire.

There you have it.

Carry on.

Listmania, Day 2

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader, as he promised, is continuing on his listmania streak. Today he provides for you a list of the greatest rulers in the history of the world. Yesterday he promised that the list would be of the greatest “leaders” in the history of the world. While putting together today’s list your Maximum Leader realized that a better appelation would be “rulers.” Allow him to explain.

This was a tough list to put together. There are so many criteria by which one could judge someone as being “great.” The criteria that your Maximum Leader settled on mentally were these: scope of power/influence in geographic terms, power within the political structure, longevity of rule/reign, scope of internal improvments within territory ruled, “cultural” growth/blossoming. After considering these criteria your Maximum Leader determined that leaders in democracies tend not be able to be compared to leaders in political systems where power is invested in a narrower number of people (or in just one person). Thus, your Maximum Leader determined that he wasn’t talking about “leaders” in the sense that we might call George Washington, Winston Churchill, or Charles DeGaulle leaders. He was really talking about rulers in an imperial or other monarchical sense. Your Maximum Leader also determined that these rules had to generally behave in a way that an objective observer could reasonably describe as “good.” This would eliminate men like Hitler, Stalin, and Mao from the list - although they might otherwise fit the criteria.

That said… Here is the list:

THE TOP 10 GREATEST RULERS IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD

1. Augustus Caesar. First emperor of the Roman Empire.
2. Qin Shihuang. First emperor of China.
3. Tokugawa Ieyasu. Shogun of Japan.
4. Peter I of Russia. Tsar of Russia.
5. Rameses II. Pharaoh of Egypt.
6. Charlemagne. Holy Roman Emperor and King of the Franks.
7. Alexander the Great. King of Macedona.
8. Kublai Khan. Emperor of China.
9. Louis XIV. King of France.
10. Heraclius. Emperor of the Byzantine Empire.

NB: The links on this list are all to Wikipedia pages. Your Maximum Leader hasn’t read all of those pages completely for accuracy and scope. He puts them there as general references.

Your Maximum Leader notes that this list is unordered, except for number 1. Your Maximum Leader does believe that Augustus Ceasar would top his list in any circumstances.

Tomorrow… A slightly different take on an old familiar list…

Carry on.

Listmania, Day 1

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader once made a series of lists with some college friends of his. The most famous of these lists (among the group of friends) was the list of “The most attractive women in the universe ever.” That list resided on your Maximum Leader’s refridgerator for many years.

For some reason over the long weekend your Maximum Leader decided to dedicate this (abbreviated) week to listmania. Every day he will post a different list for your reading pleasure. Without further introduction… Here is day one’s submission…

THE TOP TEN AMERICAN POET/SONGWRITERS SINCE 1918.

1. Irving Berlin
2. Johnny Cash
3. Bob Dylan
4. Randy Newman
5. Woody Guthrie
6. Oscar Hammerstein II
7. Bruce Springsteen
8. Townes Van Zandt
9. Jerry Lieber & Mike Stoller
10. Prince

There you have the list. The more your Maximum Leader regards this list the more he should note to you all that unless otherwise noted all his lists are in no particular order. In this case they are in no particular order, just 10 names who each could qualify as the greatest American poet/songwriter. Your Maximum Leader, if pushed, would likely stand by Berlin and Cash as 1 and 2 respectively. If he was pushed to rank the others he would probably mix up that order a little.

Tomorrow… The greatest leaders in the history of the world.

Carry on.

Album cover

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader decided to take up Ellison on his “create your own album cover” meme thingie. This one seemed like a lot of fun. The product:

album.jpg
Snakebite’s new album, “Hook him to a heavy load”

Very nice.

Here is how you make the album cover (if you are so inclined and have some photo editing software):

Create Your Own Album Cover!

It’s simple, especially if you have PhotoShop or some other image-editing software. Here’s all you do:
Go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random. The title of the article is the name of your band.

Go to http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3. The last few words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your album.

Go to http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days, where the third picture - no matter what it is - will be your album cover.

Use PhotoShop (or any similar image-tinkering app) to put it all together.

Post the result on your blog.

Your Maximum Leader will admit freely that the image used in the album cover was not the first, or second one selected at random per the instructions. The first two attempts seemed to be protected and couldn’t be saved and copied. So the image you see is the third try at getting an image.

If you are inclined, try it yourself.

Carry on.

Random iPod Post

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was tagged by Mike at Curmudgeonry with a little meme thingie. According to Mike we should: 1) Grab your iPod. 2) Select “All Songs” then hit “Shuffle.” 3) Go online and find the lyrics to the song that is selected and post them.

So… Needing content and seeing that this is an easy post to write…

The random song dished out was “Up Above My Head” by Kirk Franklin’s Nu Nation off the “God’s Property” album. Lyrics are:

Up above my head I hear music in the air
Up above my head there’s a melody so bright
And fair
I can hear when I’m all alone
Even in those times when I feel all hope is gone
Up above my head I hear joybells ringing
Up above my head I hear angels singing
There must be a God somewhere
There must be a God somewhere

I hear music in the air
I hear music everywhere
There must be a God somewhere

There must be a God somewhere
There must be a God somewhere
There must be a God somewhere

Your Maximum Leader believes that he has a version of this song sung by The King of Rock and Roll. He also believes that he has never listened to this song before. It is one of nearly 9000 songs on the iPod.

Your Maximum Leader has a playlist of his “top rated” songs that he uses for background music a lot. In iTunes one can assign a rating of 0 to 5 stars to a song. Your Maximum Leader has approximately 2100 songs rated with 4 or 5 stars. Those songs make up the contents of the “top rated” playlist. The other 7000 odd songs tend to languish unlistened to. Your Maximum Leader has decided that he’ll start playing more random songs from the “lower rated” songs to expand his horizons some.

Carry on.

Tagged!

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader’s friend, our favorite Boy Named Sous, has tagged him with a food meme. The theme is to share an “American peasant food” dish with everyone. The requirements of the dish be these: cheap, easy, and none too healthy.

Your Maximum Leader must admit that for some reason, this seems like a very tough request. But after some consideration, he decided to go with the first recipe that popped into his mind. This recipe doesn’t have a name, so far as your Maximum Leader knows. It is just a way to prepare bluefish. Now you might be saying “Oh, my Maximum Leader is having me buy fish…” Well, your Maximum Leader has never bought bluefish in his life. He always catches it himself. So if one is ignores the cost of operating a boat, this is pretty cheap. (And, of course, one’s boat doesn’t have to be very grand to go out and catch a fish… Even a bluefish.) Here goes…

Take one fillet (or more if you like) of bluefish and place it on a sheet of aluminum foil skin side down. Your aluminum foil should be big enough to make a “boat” around the fillet.

Apply a generous amount of lemon juice to the fillet.

Cover the flesh of the bluefish fillet with mayonnaise.

Cover the mayonnaise with grated parmesan cheese.

Sprinkle with “Old Bay” seasoning to taste (or none at all if you like).

Cook in 325 oven until fish is done (time will depend on the thickness of the fillet). Your Maximum Leader has also cooked this by making the “boat” of foil into a “tent” of foil and cooking it over indirect heat (a campfire - off to one side) and had it work out fine.

There you go. The oily bluefish is quite tasty when done up this way. Indeed, your Maximum Leader likes his bluefish cooked this way or smoked. Most other preparations are problematic because blue’s are quite oily and “fishy.”

Carry on.

Called Out Pt 1

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader was requested to complete one of these meme thingies by his friend Mo over at Six Degrees of Blondness…
Without further hesitation, 55 Questions you may never have been asked.:

1. Is your second toe longer than your first?
No.

2. Do you have a favorite type of pen?
Not especially. But your Maximum Leader does have a particuarly nice Mont Blanc pen of which he is fond.

3. Look at your planner for March 14, what are you doing?
Maximum Leaderly things - as ususal.

4. What color are your toenails usually?
They are toenail colored. For goodness sakes, your Maximum Leader is a man. He doesn’t paint his toenails. He is also clean and well groomed, so his toenails aren’t all yellow and crumbly…

5. What was the last thing you highlighted?
Lines on a spreadsheet.

6. What color are your bedroom curtains?
White with Chinese characters written on them.

7. What color are the seats in your car?
Black. Like the rest of the car.

8. Have you ever had a black and white cat?
Once upon a time your Maximum Leader had a black and white cat.

9. What is the last thing you put a stamp on?
A thank you note.

10. Do you know anyone who lives in Wyoming?
Dick Cheney.

11. Why did you withdraw cash from the ATM the last time?
To have cash. Who writes this stuff?

12. Who is the last baby that you held?
His niece.

13. Do you know of any twins with rhyming names?
Your Maximum Leader thinks he might have known some at some point, but he can’t recall any of them not. If he knew of any now, he would likely mock them mercilessly.

14. Do you like Cinnamon toothpaste?
Good God no! Original Crest. Only.

15. What kind of car were you driving 2 years ago?
The current Villainmobile, a 2003 Mercury Marauder.

16. Pick one: Miami Hurricanes or Florida Gators
Like Henry Kissinger said of the Iran/Iraq war… It is a pity they both can’t lose.

17. Last time you went to Six Flags?
Your Maximum Leader has never been to a Six Flags.

18. Do you have any wallpaper in your house?
Yes.

19. Closest thing to you that is yellow?
A flashing light on a cable modem.

20. Last person to give you a business card?
A new VP at a local bank.

21. Who is the last person you wrote a check to?
Your Maximum Leader doesn’t write cheques.

22. Closest framed picture to you?
The famed Karsh photo of Winston Churchill.

23. Last time you had someone cook for you?
Some friends brought a dish with them for a Super Bowl par-tay at the Villainschloss.

24. Have you ever applied for welfare?
No.

25. How many emails do you have?
In his inbox, or how many accounts?

26. Last time you received flowers?
Your Maximum Leader cannot recall ever receiving flowers.

27. Do you think te sanctity of marriage is meant for only a man & woman?
This appears to be a strangely serious and political questions amongst the whimsy of the other questions. Your Maximum Leader’s views on this matter are clear. But in case he’s not been clear enough, yes, he believes that marriage is an estate for a man and a woman.

29. Do you play air guitar?
What self-respecting man under the age of 50 doesn’t?

30. Do you take anything in your coffee?
As crazy as it may sound… Your Maximum Leader doesn’t drink coffee. It gives him a headache. He is a tea drinker.

32. What is your high school’s rival mascot?
Your Maximum Leader doesn’t recall. His “rival” high school was merged with another school… Frankly he doesn’t recall any of the “rival” mascots.

33. Last person you spoke to from high school?
The Air Marshal on Thursday.

34. Last time you used hand sanitizer?
Yesterday

35. Would you like to learn to play the drums?
Only the drumroll they “play” before the firing squad does their business.

36. What color are the blinds in your living room?
The “living room” of the Villainschloss has no blinds.

37. What is in your inbox at work?
Your Maximum Leader has no inbox.

38. Last thing you read in the newspaper?
A piece about a wrongful death lawsuit going on in town here concerning a plane crash. Your Maximum Leader knew two of the men killed in the crash.

39. What was the last pageant you attended?
The “Miss Longwood” pageant in 1990. The young woman who won the pageant was an acquaintance of your Maximum Leader’s. She later became Miss Virginia, and then was first runner up in the Miss America pageant. He will note that the pageant in question was in fact the only pageant he’d ever seen, in person or on tee vee.

40. What is the last place you bought pizza from?
Giant. Two frozen pizza’s for the freezers.

41. Have you ever worn a crown?
No. Does a floppy (mylan) cap count?

42. What is the last thing you stapled?
A note to Villainette #1’s report card.

43. Did you ever drink Clear Pepsi?
Never. Your Maximum Leader is a Coke man.

44. Are you ticklish?
Your Maximum Leader can’t divulge such information. If you knew, he’d have to kill you.

45. Last time you saw fireworks?
July 4, 2006

46. Last time you had a Krispy Kreme doughnut?
Friday night. The “hot” sign was on while your Maximum Leader was driving by. He felt a primal need to stop. He caved to the craving.

47. Who is the last person that left you a message & you actually returned their call?
Mrs Villain. Called last night.

48. Last time you parked under a carport?
Probably some time in the early 1990s.

49. Do you have a black dog?
Actually, yes. Metaphorically, not right now. (Winston Churchill’s family used to describe his depressions as “black dogs.”)

50. Do you have any pickles in your fridge?
Yes. When your Maximum Leader buys pickles he always buys Mt Olive pickles. Most of the time, he buys dill. But recently he’s been eating the little sweet gerhkin ones…

51. Are you an aunt or uncle?
Uncle.

52. Who has the prettiest eyes that you know of?
Humm… Your Maximum Leader isn’t sure on this one. He can say that he was just looking at Fiona Apple’s eyes on his iPod. They are pretty damned pretty.

53. Last time you saw a semi truck?
This morning.

54. Do you remember Ugly Kidd Jo?
Who?

55. Do you have a little black dress?
Um… No.

Indeed… These are questions your Maximum Leader has never been asked. Most of them at least.

Carry on.

5 Things

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader, during his absence, was “tagged” for a meme by the enchanting Princess Cat. (And, by the way, your Maximum Leader knows Cat to be enchanting as he had the pleasure of spending a evening in her company…) Living according to the maxim of “better late than never” here are five “wierd” habits of your Maximum Leader…

1 - The “two towels” habit. Your Maximum Leader, when emerging from a shower, bath, swim, jaunt in the ocean - whatever, must always have two towels. One is for use about the head and shoulders, the second for the rest of the body. The two towels, at the Villainschloss, are different from each other in size and texture as well. The first towel (the head/shoulders one) is of a “standard large” towel size. The second towel is a very very large size. In fact, it is about 6.5 feet long. Very suitable for wrapping around your Maximum Leader’s impressive girth in fact…

2 - Food Pt 1. Your Maximum Leader never eats seafood at a place that is more than 4 hours drive from a major body of water. Many people think that this little habit has to do with a concern your Maximum Leader has with the freshness of seafood. If you read that habit and thought that you would be wrong. It has nothing to do with freshness. Indeed your Maximum Leader knows that most seafood is caught and flash frozen aboard the fishing vessel then shipped… The habit has to do with skill of preparation. Your Maximum Leader has found that at most regular eating establishments that are more than 4 hours drive from a major body of water the cooks have little to no experience in preparing seafood.

3 - Food Pt 2. Your Maximum Leader will not order the same entree as another person in the party with which he is dining. This is to say that if your Maximum Leader were dining with 6 people he would not order any of the entrees the other six people ordered. Indeed, your Maximum Leader has ordered items he didn’t particularly like to abide by this habit. Your Maximum Leader has called servers back to the table and changed his order to assure that he didn’t get the same thing as someone else. (Senario goes like this: ML: “I’ll have the Beef Wellington for dinner.” Person 1: “Oh wow! I didn’t see that. That looks good. Mr/Ms Server? Please change my order to that.” ML: “On second thought I’ll have the chicken pot pie…”) Indeed, your Maximum Leader is quite anal about this. About the only exception is chef’s tasting menus.

4 - Bedsheets Pt 1. Your Maximum Leader only sleeps on cotton sheets with a stitch count exceeding 400. In point of fact most of his bedsheets are 500 or more. Much much more.

5 - Bedsheets Pt 2. Your Maximum Leader before sleeping on new cotton bedsheets, with a stitch count of 400 or more, must have them laundered. And laundered in a particular way. First they must be placed in a washing machine by themselves. (This is all the new sheets and pillow cases together.) They will be washed with a hot wash and warm rinse cycle. Then the sheets will be dried in the dryer. Then the sheets go back into the washing machine (by themselves) for a warm wash/warm rinse cycle. Then the sheets are dried in the dryer. Then the sheets go back into the washing machine (and this time other items of similar colour may be washed alon with the bedsheets) for either a warm wash/cold rinse cycle (or sometimes a cold/cold cycle). The sheets will then be dried in the dryer, ironed, and put in the linen closet.

There you have it. 5 things. Your Maximum Leader hopes Cat enjoys reading these. Your Maximum Leader also hopes that they aren’t enough to keep Cat from ever wanting to meet up with your (and her) Maximum Leader ever again.

Carry on.

Food Meme

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader figured it had been a while since he did a meme-thingie. So he found a pretty good one over at Not Exactly Rocket Science and decided to let it rip. And this meme is topical in that just one post earlier he was writing about eating.

The meme is quite simple. Pick one of the two listed. All listed items are foodstuffs. If you are interested in the results go below the fold…
(more…)

Attack of the Killer Memes

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader thinks you have some time to kill and figures he’ll suggest a few quizzes a give you a meme to review to take up some of your time…

First… The meme… Because all the cool kids are doing it.

It is the average American Meme. All the items listed are things that apply to average Americans. The ones crossed out are the ones that do not apply to your Maximum Leader. Pithy commentary in italics.

Eats peanut butter at least once a week. Your Maximum Leader had to think hard on this one, but then realized that in fact it has been about three weeks since he’s had peanut butter. (But only about 3 hours since he ate some peanuts.)

Prefers smooth peanut butter over chunky. Your Maximum Leader thinks chunky peanut butter is positively barbaric.

Can name all Three Stooges. But why would you want to. The Marx Brothers are far superior.

Lives within a 20-minute drive of a Wal-Mart.

Eats at McDonald’s at least once a year. With little kids who think that McDonalds is the finest of all eateries…

Takes a shower for approximately 10.4 minutes a day Likes to take much longer showers.

Never sings in the shower. You wouldn’t want to listen when he does.

Lives in a house, not an apartment or condominium.

Has a home valued between $100,000 and $300,000.

Has fired a gun. He even owns a few.

Is between 5 feet and 6 feet tall Six foot three actually.

Weighs 135 to 205 pounds Humm… 205 lbs… When was your Maximum Leader last 205 lbs? He thinks it was his sophomore year of college.

Is between the ages of 18 and 53.

Believes gambling is an acceptable entertainment option. Absolutely.

Grew up within 50 miles of current home Just barely out of range actually. Well, it depends on how you parse this. If you go by actual driving route, then you exceed 50 miles. If you go the way the bird flies, he might come in just under 50.

And two quizzes below the fold…

Otherwise…

Carry on.
(more…)

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