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Feb 16, 2004

Advice Column for February 16, 2004

Woo HOO! I’m sorry I been away from the game so long, people! I was in Antibes. Anyhow, since there was such a long back-log of email questions from you all, this week’s installment is a Stone Cold Ray Smuckles Double-Nut Beat-Down. That’s right! It’s twice as long as usual and is jam-packed with all kinds of cutting edge advice and ideas.

Oh yeah – I had some consultants go over my original “Technology Corner” that I had been working on and they had a few issues with it, so it won’t appear for just a little while longer.

Peace to My Chochachos

Listen to the theme to Ray's Place, by Milwaukee Youth Children's Choir, aka MC Frontalot

I would like a bumper sticker that says "What would Ray Smuckles do?" Can you talk to Chris about making some up for his store? They would be even cooler if they had a picture of you with a little halo.
Patrick, Internet

Dear Patrick,

Yeah, the whole “What Would Jesus Do” spin-offs are kind of tired at this point. I wouldn’t want to be thought of as a guy who used old ideas to promote himself. I am looking into developing a tiny microchip that is embedded under your skin and contains a high-quality MP3 of me yelling my name into a microphone. It would be awesome if we could get airport metal detectors to play the MP3 whenever passengers who had the chip passed through.

Good luck to you. I am happy that you wrote. I will probably start selling these microchips pretty soon.

I'm sure I'm not the first one to point out that Raymond kinda means "king of the world" in French. I can see why you choose to block this out, considering the high cheez factor associated with that phrase. However, I like it better than "Rayair" which sounds too much like "Rygar" to be taken seriously.
smooches, m

Dear M,

Hm. I guess I already knew the right information (“King of the World”) but accidentally typed incorrect information. I don’t feel like the correct definition of my name is “cheezy,” though. Why would you tell me that my name is “cheezy”? I guess I just don’t understand why I needed to take a bullet here. Why did you insult me? How come? Why did you insult me.

My roommates and I recently decided that we should stock up some kind of basic liquor cabinet for the apartment. Unfortunately, none of us knows much about good alcohol beyond such high-school-house-party fare as beer and screwdrivers. We also happen to be university students who don't have a lot of money to throw around. What would you suggest?

Dear Chris,

Yeah, you’ve got kind of a tightrope to walk here. Most important is to distinguish between mixable liquors and top shelf liquors which are to be drunk alone. Basically, you’re at the mixer stage here and should be buyin’ Most Toasts (that’s what I call a handle) of vodka, gin, rum and bourbon. Consider the following simple beginner’s list:

Vodka :: Tonic/Juice (plus lime wedge) (lots of ice)
Gin :: Tonic/Juice (plus lime wedge) (lots of ice)
Rum :: Cola (plus lime wedge) (lots of ice)
Bourbon :: Cola (plus lime wedge) (lots of ice)

See! It ain’t nothin’. I bet you could shake that action for under sixty bucks. Oh, and, it’s good not to go qualitywise below (in order) Gordon’s, Gordon’s, Bacardi, Ancient Situation. Otherwise you risk damage to the ocular nerve.

Word to the wise: don’t make your drinks any stronger than 3:1, otherwise dudes and ladies who come to party at your apartment will be leavin’ ramen.

[Editor’s note: “Ancient Age” bourbon is marketed as “Ancient Situation” to the Underground consumer base]

Ray, I need help naming a drink. It's very simple; add one shot of vanilla vodka to a pint of Guinness. I'm not a great fan of it (I find it too sweet) but some of my friends enjoy it. [However, they] cannot agree on what to call it. What do you recommend?

On an unrelated note, can you still play the piano, or did you lose your mastery of the keys after your trip through hell?
DH, Las Vegas NV

Dear DH,

Hm. A shot of vanilla vodka in a Guinness. I can see how that could be either kind of interesting or perhaps bad. Flavors are really tricky to match, and they don’t seem the same to all people. I guess just call it the Johnny Romper, you know, like a guy who is wearing red long underwear and just jumping around like crazy in kind of a hilly area. That’s what came to mind just now. (In my imagination, this “Johnny Romper” guy also has a tri-corn hat on, and it’s like 1772.)

As far as piano playing goes, I can still rib-tickle the baby grand, although I have been branching out into other instruments lately. You may have seen that I just picked up John Lennon’s first Rickenbacker at auction (I keep a line to Christie’s open most weekends). One thing they didn’t show in the strip is that I also recently bought a pretty famous saxophone that one of the really good past saxophone players had owned.

I was rooting through my old cassette collection the other day and I found an old Jim Nabors album. Well, I popped the sucker in and gave it a listen. I haven't stopped listening to it for 3 days! Is the world really coming to an End?
Concerned in Calgary

Dear Calgary,

Yeah, I don’t know why young people think it is all silly to enjoy Jim Nabors’ music just because he played Gomer Pyle on Gomer Pyle. The dude could sing! He could lay it down in a very nice style. Why can’t an artist be typecast as an idiot in one medium, yet soar in another? Anyhow, I would have more information in this answer, but the main Jim Nabors website I found on Google started automatically playing some really loud MIDI of one of his songs and it made me kind of angry.

As an addendum to your response to the 'Chode Skeptic,' I believe the term he has in mind is "chot," which is the term I remember from high school as being used to denote a male generative organ that is wider than it is long. You won't find this definition on the Urban Dictionary, but we all know that the Urban Dictionary is contributed to largely by Scottish Folds anyway.
A Dude On The Internet

Dear Dude,

First of all, I would not continue citing “high school” as a reference if you want to make much headway in the world. Anyhow, I’ve never heard of a “chot.” The only term I know of is “choad,” and if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go powder mine, because it’s getting kind of flared up after sitting around reading all this email.

[Just kidding, I’m just going to make another Ketel Kat and probably have a cig]

I like to think of myself as something of a cook. I especially like to make stirfries, but I usually end up with the same problem. After chopping onions, my hands have a very strong onion odor for often DAYS after. Yes, I wash and bathe as much as the next guy, although I am sure not as much as you cats. Anyways, last time this happened, I chopped green onions for their mild flavor and aroma, and still I have onion hands, two days later. Can you help me out Ray, as a clean cat, and also as a cooking man-diva?
Wondering Wok

Dear Wondering Wok,

Lots of folks have this problem with garlic and onions. Some say to rub a piece of silverware between your hands (has to be actual silver or silver-plate), some say to mush smashed lemons all around on your hands, some say to wear surgical gloves or Ziploc-style gloves while cutting. Maybe try not touching the onions at all while you’re cutting them. Personally, I don’t have this problem, so I am not the best guy to ask.

Oh, Pat just called (he wanted to brag about how he had just found water using some mail-order divining rods that I said were a joke) and he recommends immersing your hands in Coca-Cola for at least twenty seconds. Alright, hope this helps. I’m going to take a nap and then go to this party over at Téodor’s and then work on the rest of these later.

What made you and Beef decide that you were no longer going to wear shorts and T-shirts like when you were young? (thong doesn't count)
Jr. Bacon, PA

Dear Thump Titties, (sorry, just a name I came up with for you just now)

Yeah, it ain’t no thing. That’s how we dressed when we were kids, and we dug it. Styles change, dogg. I bet you don’t have a cut-out portion of an Iron Maiden t-shirt pinned to the back of a sleeveless denim jacket anymore. I bet you also quit sitting on a stepladder and trying to autoerotically asphyxiate with a chloroformed sock in your mouth (in this scenario the sock is secured to a short string which is tied to the ceiling, and you are wearing clear jelly mules).

Just be cool, and realize that people change. I don’t wear shorts and T-shirts too much anymore.

How's it going, brah? I'm a long time reader, first time writer and I'm excited to have a question worth asking you. Here goes: I want to get a tattoo, but in about six months of thinking about it, I've yet to come up with any design, or even a concept for a design, that I'd want on my body for the rest of my life. I'm thinking it has to be something personal, something of permanent interest, and yet hopefully something at least somewhat funny too. I'm into working hard, and I like hanging out with dogs and work horses and being in the woods, and I really like pirates although I don't really think they have enough relation to my life to justify getting a pirate tattoo. Do you have any ideas that might get me thinking in the right direction?

Yeah, a lot of people seem to want to get tattoos lately. It’s kind of a cultural phenomenon, I think, where folks live in a shallow commercial culture that doesn’t have a lot of roots or meaning so they try to create meaning and importance through strong statements such as tattoos, piercings and other external signs of permanence and belonging. Nothing says “I’m somebody” like a screaming bobcat head on your calf. (particularly if the bobcat head has a small speech bubble which says “I’m Somebody!”)

Anyhow, it sounds like you want a tattoo for its own sake, rather than because you have a reason to get a tattoo. Maybe for now just get a t-shirt which says an opinion that you agree with. When you have a stronger idea to dedicate actual ink to (name of new girlfriend, own initials, bulldog chewing up a skateboard), you’ll know it’s time.

Ray, why is it that you have nipples like a human person?
Curious in Texas

Dear Curious,

Hold on here: am I getting this straight? Is a dude asking another dude about his nipples?

Hella weird, guy. You are Violating.


Where did you get your sweet spectacles. Mine are okay but yours are hella cool.
D, Internet

Dear D,

Eyeglass companies can make lenses for any size or shape of spectacles! All you have to do is provide the frames and they do the rest. These particular frames belonged to my dad, Ramses Luther Smuckles (CFA Registered name: GC Tinkerbell’s "Careful He’s A Spaniard") and I’m proud to wear them. I didn’t know him well, but I like to think they fit me ‘cause they fit him. I have an old redded-up Kodak photo of him holdin’ me as a baby and he looks just tough as hell, just sittin’ on our old cement stoop in the Avenues and cradlin’ my swaddled ass in his arms, no doubt barely able to sit still for a second, as it was with him. Let me see if I can attach the photo here.

It looks like another election is coming up. I try to stay current, so I read magazines and websites, but I generally can't tell what's really going on with politics. What's the story? Who's good and who's evil? Who should I support in the upcoming elections? Just break on down in that way you do.
Al, Culver City, CA

Dear Al,

Alright, politics is a really tricky issue to deal with when you’re running an advice column where all stripes of people need to feel welcome and at home so that they can be honest and discuss their problems. All I will say is that the current President seems to use the White House in the same way that Ricky Schroeder used the mansion on Silver Spoons. I wouldn’t be all that surprised if little train tracks ran through the west wing these days.

I’m going to leave this powder keg alone, sorry. I’ll be in my bed, listening to my new 2500GB iPod, completely blessed on Bowmore and chubby J’s.

Have you chosen to endorse any of the Democratic candidates for President?
Pseudonymless in Pennsylvania

Dear Penn.,

Wait a minute, you are assuming that I’m a Democrat. That is rude. Anyhow, I guess there is only one Democratic candidate left at this point (i.e. that John Kerry guy), although earlier in the week that one home-made Drudge Report website reported that the Drudge Report website had announced some kind of potential sex scandal that John Kerry might have been involved in. You know what? So what, I say. Every dude has his background. I used to pay a $60 cover every Friday night to watch the Fuck Races down at Hanky Panky’s, and I’d sure as hell be a good President.

Our little kitty is growing up and is now going through the throes of womanhood. One night she started attacking my foot. Thinking it was a game, I started fighting back. My girlfriend saw it and told me the cat was dry humping my foot. Since it happened we just sort of nod to each other in the hall and avoid contact as much as possible. Things are awkward between us now and sometimes I see that gleam in her eye again. Is this just a cat in heat or is this a female equivalent of an Oedipus complex?
Mike, Ontario

Dear Mike,

It sounds to me like your girlfriend has jealousy issues. Your little old p-cat was just messin’ around with your shoe, just having all kinds of innocent fun, and your girlfriend saw her opportunity to drive a stake through your relationship with the bitty. It sounds like it’s time to do some “sexual housekeeping” here: keep the cat and ditch the witch. Any kind of human lady who would stoop to trying to get you to believe that a cat would be romantic on a shoe is definitely going to be trouble later in life.

* A Gentle Reminder (“Disclaimer”): This is advice from a cartoon cat, and should not be taken seriously. We are not responsible for anything you do based on what Ray says, or otherwise. Do not commit suicide or otherwise interrupt the lives of others. Continue on with your life as though you had never read this column. Erase your browser history. Not for readers under 18 years of age.