New posts on dp@large

 dp@large has a new home. Here are the latest posts...

186 mph in the rain
Streetcar is now a bridge
Space Mountain with the lights on
Barcelona fruit market
Will the clever Devious Maids be renewed?
What is bourbon?
This is cheating
Can you make it any more precise?


Click here to read latest posts on the new dp@large.

dp@large newlook

 dp@large has a new home

My email is

 @dpatlarge and @dpatlarge2

Your comments are always appreciated and welcome!

Click here to read latest posts on the new dp@large.


Confessions of a jar collector

I am about to tell you everything.


I collect jars. You saved the salsa jar after you finished it off. Washed it, and it is under the sink waiting for another assignment. We understand each other.

I cook. I buy everything fresh. That means I have to store what I buy until I need it in the kitchen. I have been doing for so long it is now just a way of life.

I buy fresh crema from Cardenas. It comes in a one pound plastic container scooped up from the bin. When I get it home, it goes into a glass jar and into the fridge. I can keep it at least 8-9 days that way and it is always ready and easy to use.

Hummus goes right into a jar from the blender. Topped off with olive oil and into the fridge. Ready when I want to eat it. Perfect.

Habaneros get the same treatment after a quick rinse and packing with a wet paper towel to keep them cold and wet. 10 or 12 peppers like this keep about a week and they get chopped and thrown in everything.

Black olives out the can into a jar.

Marinated Jalapenos have a special huge jar that is continuously full of peppers. Stays cold. I leave the brine and keep refilling it. I also drop an onion or handful of shallots into the brine which will pickle them over a week or so.

Any leftover grilled onions for to the morning omelet for instance goes into a jar. I think the jar keeps better than plastic.

When I make salsas, sauces, dips, storage is so easy.  Flax seeds, oats, quinoa and so on.

I have a couple of tall jars which I use to store celery stalks. After washing, I cut to length and leave them in the jar in the fridge. Works great.

How many jars I have I am not at liberty to mention. I do keep an inventory. Shapes and sizes, yes. Just how many, well. If I tell ya, I will have to …

Salt and pepper? I recycled old vinegar bottles that look like a bulb with a long neck. Washed them out. Let’em dry. Filled with pepper and kosher salt and I am in business. I also use about 4-5 other ones for flavoring small quantities of olive oil. One with EVOO and crushed red pepper, one with EVOO and garlic for instance.

salt and pepper

I have large pickle jar I use when I make pickled peppers in the fridge. When not pickling, I used it store fresh basil sprigs I get from the Asian grocery.

I keep my jars hidden and out sight. My jars are nobody’s business but my own. Certain shapes work best. Large volume jars with wide mouths. I have several jars with no lids. Actually 6 jars are still not paired with a lid. Just kidding, I threw that it… I don’t know what got into me. I don’t actually know how many are missing lids. Really, you have to believe me. No, really.

Sometimes the lids get thrown away by accident. When this happens, terse memos are fired off to possible offenders reminding them to respect the jars and lids of others.

Often straggling lids just show up in a few days and get paired with the correct jar. Some lids fit jars that did not start life together. That they weren’t originally a pair but work later is a real bonus. I am currently working on a name for this phenomenon. N.B. Once I figure it out it will remain a secret, sorry. Let something like that out and next thing you know, people will be asking for all kinds of information I am just not willing to share.

One more thing. I need to talk to the person who makes the glue to affix the labels onto the damn glass jar. They must be really proud of their glue. Really? Affixing a label is wonderful. It is important. A label on a pickle jar does not need to survive a scud missile attack.


Oh, the olives in your fridge, you have plans for the jar when, ah…you know… they’re gone?



You can get with this! Or you can get with that!

You can get with this! Or you can get with that!

This customer service lesson is so simple I almost decided not to write it out. I will share with you what happened and what I think should have happened. Tell me if you agree.

Here’s the story.   I own a pair of Lucchese boots. I’ve had them for a year. It’s a nice pair and I often get compliments. Someone once told me if I was wearing them standing next to a Lamborghini, I would notice your boots. That’s a nice compliment. I never thought they were that spectacular. Anyway, I am in my favorite western store and tell my boot guy, “hey my boots are starting to wear and I want to have them a good long while.” Boot guy looked at them then produced a business card from his shirt pocket. It’s the card from a repair shop. He says, “these guys are the best around.” BG suggested that I drop them off and told me I could even use his name. I send all of my customers his way he says. Best around?  Nice one! BG. Good enough for me.


I dropped by the repair  late Saturday and showed the card to the counter man who turns out to be the owner. His name is on the card. I tell me he came highly recommended by BG and asked if he could remove the wear on my boots. “Sure”, he said, “when do you need them?”  I said, “No hurry, how about end of the week?” He tells me, “Not a problem, pay me now though, total is $65”. Good thing I wasn’t at an auction! I handed him my AMEX without flinching. I am thinking, Boot Guy told me he was the best and you pay for the best. Go for it. I walked away with a claim check.

Waiting the week it kept popping into my mind that if repair guy is indeed the best, if he has all this equipment, my boots are going to look great… repaired, polished, ready to go. I was excited just thinking about it. I returned to the shop, the owner helps me once again, pulls a shopping bag to the counter and there they are. Repair Guy Owner quickly pulls them out and shows me the soles. I say great. He drops them back into the bag and off I go. I get them home… they weren’t polished.

I was disappointed more than anything. I can put a shine on them myself, not a problem. Hearing he was “the best” put a reasonable expectation in my mind that something more valuable than $65 was going to happen.

I guess this is what I was expecting. When I told him I was referred by BG, the first thing RG should have asked me was… “have you ever been in my shop before?”  RG should have also told me “you have a nice pair of boots here and since you are a new customer, I will make sure I get the work done perfectly, so that if you… you know, stand next to a lime green  Lambo or somethin’, people will notice your Luccheses.”

That’s reasonable, right? That’s the sell. Sell the sizzle? Right? He should have also made a note to contact my guy, (actually it is his guy) at the boot store to say “THANKS”. He should have mentioned “keep sending me customers you think I can help and drop by so I take care of you too.” Then maybe give him MORE CARDS, a brochure, a Baja Fresh gift card or something.

Then, do the work perfectly the first time. Before handing the boots back to me. Dress the heels, cover them in boot wax and take them to the buffer machine and put a mirror finish on them. THEN put them back in the bag.  I figure that would take him 2 minutes at the most and cost next to nothing.

When I come back. SELL me on how great they look. TELL me…

“I polished them especially for you and dressed the heels and soles and SINCE YOU ARE A NEW CUSTOMER AND I MAKE A LIVING BY EXCEEDING my customer’s  EXPECTATIONS.”… “WHICH not to mention GROWS MY BUSINESS, oh, did I say… I polished them MYSELF for YOU.”

Pretty simple, huh? Unreasonable?

green lambo

I would have been forced at that point to tell everyone looking at (not my Lamborghini) … I’m a Corvette guy… about the guy who takes care of my boots.

If it were your business…you would have right?

Did I tell you I have another pair that need new heels? I am looking for a boot repair guy. I am open to suggestions.

Cheers!  -dp

Your comments or own experiences are always welcome. :0

Cyber Monday Stats you can use right NOW!

Cyber Monday Stats you can use right NOW!

43% of people didn’t like Cyber Monday last year.

Cyber Monday shopping increased by 17% from 2011 to 2012

11:25am EST – the peak time for online Cyber Monday shopping last year.

In 2013 46% of consumers will shop on Cyber Monday

Last year, 47.1% of shopping dollars were made from work computers.

13% of Cyber Monday purchases were made directly on mobile last year.

Deals and coupons on mobile: 18% of shoppers checked out discounts via mobile.

Department stores increased Cyber Monday sales by 43% from 2011 to 2012.

Consumers spent $1.465 billion in one day last Cyber Monday.

iPads rule: 90% of Cyber Monday mobile shopping was through an iPad last year.


say Special Ability Foundation Project Announcement

say Special Ability Foundation Project Announcement



Share your Black Friday Shopping stories and photos

Share your Black Friday Shopping stories and photos

It is upon us!  So far, reports of pushing, shoving, shootings, great deals, camping out for a week!

What did you experience? Share with us. Send your photos and stories. Here is the email address. 

Like I always say, keep your head down and your flak jacket on!




* Follow us on twitter at @dpatlarge  

* email your  funny gifs, sour puss selfies (18yrs + only), optical illusions, playlists, lyrics, twists of irony, inappropriate questions, made up stuff and/ or comments to . (or not!)

Here is a link to a funny story that will make you laugh. I promise! -dp

Here is a list of EMEA countries          *  Here is a list of ASEAN countries   

Cyber Monday from your desk? Think twice!

Cyber Monday from your desk? Think twice!

If you were not one of the 30 million shoppers who wrestled with his fellow man to get the best of the door busters on Black Friday in recent years, you have another chance on Cyber Monday.

Cyber Monday means Black Friday from your computer and you can shop online from the comfort of home. If you are planning to shop from your office computer this Cyber Monday, think twice. Or least make a plan so you don’t get fired for it.

More companies care blocking access to on line shopping sites this year. Being careful is sound advice. The deals are great. Having it turn into a problem with your boss is not.

Lots of workers think Cyber Monday is no big deal and shopping on line is a way of life. Companies permitting on line shopping may set guidelines, limit hours of the workday that shopping is possible, or even monitor a worker’s usage to ensure the focus is on work.

More good advice, if you miss a deadline and the excuse is that you were shopping on line. Think of a better excuse.

Here are some ideas that will help you strike that “I have a job- I have to shop” balance.

  1. Learn the rules of your employer then follow them. Your company may have a policy, make sure you know the lay of the land before you log in to a shopping site.
  2. If you are allowed to shop from your desk on Cyber Monday, make your purchases and get back to work as soon as possible.
  3. Your Android or iPhone may be your constant companion and allow to you to shop on line during work hours. Take you smart phone to lunch and shop then. You don’t want to be head down in your smart phone with work undone.
  4. There is always a chance that your invite a virus into the company network. IT works continuously to lock down the company network. Use your head and avoid possibly malicious links or sites that could infect the company network.

2012 was a banner year for Cyber Monday with sales topping one billion dollars for the day. If you must shop from your desk, make sure work comes first then click away.



* Follow us on twitter at @dpatlarge  

* email your  funny gifs, sour puss selfies (18yrs + only), optical illusions, playlists, lyrics, twists of irony, inappropriate questions, made up stuff and/ or comments to . (or not!)

Here is a link to a funny story that will make you laugh. I promise! -dp

Here is a list of EMEA countries          *  Here is a list of ASEAN countries   


“Oh, so how was lunch?”

I am not kidding…this is a true story!

Got back to the office… everyone was asking me. “Oh, so how was lunch?” Where’d you go?” Just down to the corner I said, they were asking me. “Good lunch?” I said. “Oh it was a once in a lifetime lunch… the hot sauce was perfect!” They said. “Wow!” I just made it back to my office, closed the door, and thought to myself… if they only knew what I mean by perfect.”

I will share with you what really happened. You can’t make this stuff up. This really happened. Just remember this for later. I never carry cash… not even a dollar bill.

So here goes…

It was a Wednesday. I was working. Things were going pretty well. Right about 11 am I started thinking about lunch. My usual deal was to get out of there around 11 or so and come back a little after 1 pm. A 2 hour lunch is nothing when you work 14 hours a day.

So there I was…thinking about what to have for lunch. Hmmm….

Thinking about lunch

I decided on a giant Chimichanga. Down the road there was a kind of funky Mexican Burrito place where you could go in…order… from the window… and your lunch was served at the table a few minutes later. Easy enough. Since I went there all the time I knew that if I didn’t get movin’ I would be STANDING instead of sitting.

Got there. Parked. Got in line. Ordered the Chimi. Paid with an American Express card since I don’t (remember?). Ok, Took my receipt and parked it at a high top over in the corner. While you are waitin’ for your lunch, you went up to the salsa counter and grabbed a bunch of these….

salsa cups

There was a Salsa and Hot Sauce bar that gave you your pick of salsa ranging from VERY VERY HOT to sweet. The tastiest thing to do was mix the extremes which I did every time I went there. A always mixed a little of the super super hot hot hot salsa with a little of the sweet chili salsa. Together they made beautiful music.

super salsa

Got back to my table. The place was starting to fill up. In fact a couple of young ladies sat down next to me. Same high top just one over. They were all…


And, of course the guys around her table were all….


I did notice but tried to not pay attention… Boom! my chimi hits the table and I am ready to eat! So I figured the first thing was to keep my shirt clean. I reached across the table and tried to pull a napkin out of the…


You know that when a place first opens the salt and pepper are FULL… and the napkins are crammed into the dispenser. When you reach for one you get many because they are jammed in there so tightly. I wasn’t really paying attention. I pulled one out and didn’t get very far. I yanked. Now the entire napkin dispenser is off the table and hanging by the one napkin that still won’t come out. Finally, the napkin comes out. Well no, let’s say the napkin dispenser couldn’t defy gravity any longer and it dropped to the table leaving me with a napkin in my hand. Except… the rest of jammed packed full napkin dispenser landed on the

salsa cups

which was full of…

super salsa

Do you know what a dollop is? Picture in your mind about a tablespoon of this super super hot hot hot salsa. That’s a dollop. Now, dollops don’t usually fly…but this dollop did. Imagine stepping on a tube of toothpaste. Get the idea?

As the napkin dispenser landed on the table it landed directly on top of the hot suce in the paper cups. The napkin dispenser crushed the paper cup with the super super hot hot hot salsa. (To give you some idea… chop up a bunch of habaneros then rub your eyes.. no, don’t do that) Dollops that go up must land somewhere right?

The dollop of hot sauce shot out of the paper cup. My particular dollop landed one table over. The girl with the whale tail was sitting with her back to me.


The dollop landed just above her whale tail on the small of her back. Gravity took over real quick like and the super super hot hot hot salsa headed south…so fast that my WHALETAIL girl didn’t know what hit her. Let’s say it disappeared… fast!

She turned around and looked at me kinda like this…

kinda like this

She had no idea it was the super super hot hot hot salsa…

Then her friend, who also had no idea what happened was all like…

images (3)

except scarier… keep in mind she too still had no idea what happened. This all transpired in a split second. The girl with the whale tale couldn’t see what happened…only FEEL the super super hot hot hot salsa run from the small of her back down between her Butt Cheeks.

She then turned around and gave me a…

a roar

If looks could kill… she was in disbelief. She sat there for a moment. She was stunned. Not to mention her womanly underthings were awash in the super super hot hot hot salsa.

I think she had trouble processing it… (er… I mean, figuring what was making her so uncomfortable.) Was this a joke? An accident? One thing for sure… she was on fire down there. All because of me.

WHALETAIL gets up and heads to the ladies room. She was in there about 10 minutes. Now I am face to face with her friend. Stink eye doesn’t even begin to describe the look on her face. She was sure I did whatever I did on purpose and she was not backing off.

I thought… this probably is not the time for a “hey, hey, baby! and a wink” or a “Hi YOU doin?” Since I have never seen this woman before in my entire life, I also decided not to knock on the ladies room door for a quick… ” Babe you alright? Babe, Need help? C’mon, open the door, you OK babe?”

My thoughts were racing. What could I do to solve this?… I quickly reviewed my options and couldn’t come up with anything workable. I have no cash on me so I can’t give WHALETAIL a $20 for dry cleaning… Since the lunch was paid for a the counter, I couldn’t pick up her check…I happened to be wearing a company shirt… so she could find me later…

I settled for a sheepish, “I hope she is okay” to the friend and got a continuous laser beam of stink eye aimed at my forehead until WHALETAIL returned to, oh, I think I mean…waddled and squished, back to the table. They were both very quiet… So now I’m standin there goin’, “Yoo Hoo! Excuse me! I didn’t even take a bite of my chimichanga yet!”

I figured, this wasn’t going to get better. I believe in being bold in the face of danger. I decided to abandon my lunch and stop at their table. I asked WHALETAIL if she was ok. She ignored me. NO sense of humor! I apologized again and said it was an accident. She wasn’t interested.

I decided to be bigger than the problem so didn’t even blame gravity. I didn’t even say how good of a shot it was or that a shot that good could NEVER BE REPEATED. Then wondered why ESPN is never around to film the shot of the day when you need them. No SportsCenter Play of the Day for me tonight. Oh well.

Nope. WHALETALE didn’t even look up at me. I figured she was afraid to look deep into my dreamy green eyes? Hey, yep they’re dreamy so I can understand.

Her friend, the prosecuting attorney of Chimichanga County, looked liked she was going to strangle me. I took a breath, then headed for the door.

Ok. I admit, I was a little proud of the shot…ok… a lot.

I left thinking. “Just hope my car starts.”