(#373)

We are the TOXIC Group:

Tastemakers
Obligating
Xylophones
Into
Conversation

Our meetings typically consist of 30 seconds of clever xylophone-related banter followed by 48 minutes of unbroken claptrappery (occasionally punctuated by a sneeze or self-important cough that reminds folks in the group of their own flimsy mortality). The list of covered topics is indeed long and tedious; an indeterminate amount of talking points is covered multiple–sometimes numerous–times, with very little ceremony.

The talking points typically meander around with little consequence, and our staffers have learned to endure them long enough to get to the meat of the meeting: attempting to reach a quorum on where to go for pizza afterwards. There’s been a glut of new “artisanal” pizza joints in the area, not to mention the existing restaurants who need gimmicks to keep up.

Gino’s Northeast: an old school pizzeria with a hint of sports bar (now with 25% more sass back)
Donnie’s Bunker: war hero’s spot with authentic Vietnam War memorabilia
Skip’s Dugout: retired baseball star’s spot with authentic ’60s and ’70s memorabilia
Gugliotti’s: Sicilian-themed ristorante
Chunkster’s: Most Toppings Around!®
Steggo’s Dino-mite Pizza: self-explanatory
Jeffrey’s Tamborine: adults-only gaming and entertainment-related eatery (wine allowed in the ball pit)

This particular installment of the TOXIC Group (#373) eventually ended with a near-unanimous selection of kofta kebab, since there’s only one local option for that cuisine and we were rapidly running out of time. For the record, a good portion of the group rallied for the adult play place, but Susie’s new around these parts, and we want her to stick around for a month or two before we test her patience with a drunken happy hour.

Party Scene – 22:09GMT

Ah, the old party scene–jumbled oxymorons come standard, usually revealed as anecdotes directed at unwilling audience members while a belligerent man of means whips out his… billfold and graces us with his… financial stability–for at least a few minutes. Then he dashes off to some other event, leaving his words to be digested like a goblet of substandard table wine–red, just red–and a can of shitty baked beans.

The kitchen, meanwhile, takes some uncommon patience, the wages not justified for the bodily exertion if you want people to come back to your particular eatery. Business plows forward every day, unaware of the human element, the possibility of crashing and burning starkly inevitable.

Worker ants file into their high rises, readily subjugated for profit.

You guys wouldn’t know anything about the perpetuation of that particular paradigm, now would you? No, of course not.

I really wish I could use my arms.

Varietals – 16:31GMT

I don’t have anything to say to the savage sauvignon or the temperamental tempranillo, they wouldn’t understand me anyway. I do have a bone to pick with these stubborn varietals, but I’d rather keep my emotions bottled up until near explosion. Something about keeping my feelings below the surface just seems right, until I blow my top at a valet guy who’s just trying to do his job. I can’t predict when my manic episode will happen, so I’ll just be leaving it up to chance, the decider of all fate.

Just a note for you, grand deciders of my fate: a wine tasting would be a really good way to boost morale around here. I don’t know if I’m your only subject or if you have an entire warehouse filled with these padded holding cells, but just keep that in mind if you’re looking to do something nice for me/us.

I really wish I could use my arms.