Archive for the ‘Random Shit’ Category

Some Paintings And A Sick Bird

Still working on the big bunny painting. This photo is about a month old, but I just found it on my hard drive and was all, “the people NEED to see this!”

Ok, not really, but so much effort goes into taking a selfie in the middle of the night…what, with putting the camera on a tripod (or gorilla pod in this case), setting a timer, running to get into position and posing as if you’re “in action” all before the camera timer goes off and takes the picture. Why have all that effort go to waste? Anyway, the painting has progressed a little bit since this photo, but not much. Hopefully I can finish it very soon. There is an extremely sad and lonely empty wall space in the shop that needs filling. So, the sooner I finish this thing the better.

Since I was going through my hard drive you are in luck today, because I found a couple more things to share. If you frequent this blog you know about my recent mini canvas obsession. Por ejemplo: this and this. Anyway, I am happy to report that the obsession has extended past my own desires and trickled down to my offspring.

Not my best octopus and I blame the tools. I’m simply too advanced at this point in my career to use Crayola markers on a canvas. At least that’s what I keep telling myself. Elliott, on the other hand, has got it down. Flowers and sunshine, baby!

This next one is just to illustrate how funny I think I am.

Sadly, this little birdie never did get better. Sorry, buddy.

That’s it for now. Thanks for tuning in!
– Jeff

* * * * * * * *
Keep the good times rolling!
– Post from 2 years ago in which one of the kids invents a new awesome word.
– Tweeting: @jeffclaassen
– Gramming: @jeffclaassen

Pink Mocha Cupcake Breakfast

On my way to work this morning I stopped by the downtown gas station to pick up the world’s healthiest breakfast, a Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino and a pack of cigs. And by “cigs” I mean a pack of Hostess Cupcakes. I know, I know…you’re impressed with the healthy food options at our gas station. It’s like “farm-to-table”, but with a twist of “shit you should not be putting in your body”. What can I say, this town is a treasure. Speaking of treasure, this is what I walked out of the gas station with.

Not exactly what I planned on, but why not toss some fancy Rosé into the mix with your gross “coffee” and awful “cupcakes”? I have been a long time fan of the Chronic Cellars artwork, but this is my first ever purchase. Of course, I’ve also heard plenty of good things about the wines. And you probably didn’t realize how fancy I am, but I’ve also met Josh a few times. He’s the winemaker and one of the Beckett Brothers that created Chronic Cellars back in 2004. Anyway, I’ve been trying to hunt down this Pink Pedals Rosé for a few weeks. Despite living 3.5 miles away from the Chronic tasting room I’ve been trying to find it at local grocery stores. Going straight to the source is always my first choice, but my work hours conflict with their tasting room hours. I see their other wines in the stores and figured it would be no problem finding the bottle I wanted, but have yet to come across the elusive Pink Pedals. Until now…

So, I was at the gas station and a lady in line before me was buying a bottle and I was like, “What the…? They sell that here?” This place is about one minute away from my shop. It’s like Pink Pedals has been laughing in my face this whole time. Well, I’ve got you now, Pink Pedals!

If I seem a little more talkative and animated (or we’re closed early, but you see me asleep and drooling on the counter) at work tonight you know why.

Rosé all day,

Oh yeah, check out Joe’s artwork on IG: @jkalionzes. He’s freakin’ awesome.

Scrumptious Steve: The Best Goodwill Find Ever

No, a card of smoking angels is not the best Goodwill find ever. It’s the message inside that’s the prize. But before we get to that let me tell you how I came across this. I’ve been making little paintings on old record sleeve inserts. Stuff like painting a face over an ad for a Dean Martin album. They’re all small and I’ve been getting frames for them at Goodwill. So, when I bought this smoking angels card I had no idea it was even a card. It was just a picture in a frame that I needed. When it came time to frame my little painting I removed the beer guzzling angels from the frame and what do you know…it was a card. Naturally, I opened it and that’s when I realized I was holding the best Goodwill find ever in my hands. And now, it is my great honor to share it with all of you…my two loyal readers. Enjoy!

My first thought when I read this was, “Steve, you dirty little devil! What on Earth did you do to receive such an amazing little note? I want to be thought of as a scrumptious man. Teach me!” But that was my first thought and when I thought about it more I couldn’t help but wonder what happened to these two. Admittedly, I can’t make out the girl’s name. Why is it the only thing written in cursive? Isn’t cursive obsolete at this point? I suppose that’s a whole other story that I’ll ignore for now. I’m guessing Steve must have thought pretty highly of T (we’ll just call her that for now) since he framed the card. But what happened? How many decadent dates were there? Did Steve become less scrumptious over time? Did they live happily ever after? If not, will T ever find another man as amazing as Steve? Why would Steve donate this to the Goodwill? Or maybe in a fit of rage T donated it because Steve’s scrumptiousness evolved into assholeness and she couldn’t stand the fact that there was written proof that once there was a time when she loved Steve. Sadly, only Steve and T know the truth. I sincerely hope the two of them are still sharing decadent nights together and that maybe they’ve had a baby or two.

As for you, loyal reader, get out there and share a decadent night with your own scrumptious Steve or Samantha or whoever. Just make sure it’s decadent and delicious. Then, after you’ve had your fun donate all the evidence to your local Goodwill.

See ya!
– Jeff

Idiots And Assholes

This is what I saw when I walked out of work a couple of days ago.

Just because you left somebody in the backseat with the door open does not mean you are allowed to park like an idiot. Seriously, with two open spots side by side how hard could it be to park in between the lines? Perhaps this person needs to trade this car in for a Mini Cooper. Or better yet, maybe they need to start taking the bus. Or, even better, stay home. However, this is nothing compared to what awaited me two days later when I got to work in the morning.

Who does this? I’ll tell you. Assholes do this, that’s who. Seriously, what is wrong with people? There is nothing more annoying to me than having to pick up somebody else’s mess. Why do people think it’s ok to do this? There are four containers here. That means it’s safe to assume there were four people (or 2 very hungry ones) eating on/around the bench directly in front of our shop. Probably adults. Not a single one of them noticed the garbage can on the corner, which is about a 15-20 second walk from the bench. Not a single one thought to pick up after their retarded friends. And not a single one spoke up to be all, “Yo, guys…let’s not leave all our shit here.” Should I mention the place their food came from was a 15-20 second walk in the opposite direction of the trash can on the corner and it would have been totally appropriate to walk the trash back to the place where the food came from. To put that another way, these assholes were 15 seconds away in either direction from finding a place to dispose of their trash properly.

Someone parking like an idiot is funny to me. People acting like assholes is not funny. It’s annoying, but hey…it gave me something to write a blog post about. See, inspiration is all around us. Thanks, assheads!

Update 8am: BONUS IDIOT

This person was in front of me and we both pulled up to the curb at the same time to park. She refused to pull forward for some reason and stopped just in front of the red zone. Oh, I know why, because she’s an asshole and an idiot. I won’t say I was “forced” to park in the red zone because of her. I’m an adult willing to take responsibility for my actions and I admittedly chose to park in the red zone as opposed to driving around to find a spot further away from my destination, but I could have been a lot less in the red zone (like just my bumper, maybe) had she pulled forward like a decent human being. The further out of the red zone I could be the greater the chance of not getting a ticket. Hey, you know what? I have photoshop, let’s see how this would look if Miss Poopy Parker did pull forward.

See, my car totally fits!
Ok, I know that’s only half my car, but use your imagination. I’m guessing that half my back tire to the bumper would be in the red zone. And here’s how much of an idiot I am. I honestly contemplated driving back just to get a photo where my whole car would be in frame.

Happy parking!
– Jeff

P.S. – Check out the new “Parisian Princess” t-shirt.

New Goodies At Viva Paso And Other Random Shiz

Things have been pretty busy at Viva Paso this past week. We’ve received a lot of new products. I’d talk about all of them here, but I’ve already done that on the Viva Blog.

Work stuff aside, let’s engage in some random photo time. I’m just going to scroll through my phone to find some things worthy enough to be shared with the world…or the two people that happen to read this. Here we go!

Here’s Elliott with all of his friends. How do kids end up with so much shit? What’s weird is how they’re able to keep such a good mental inventory of it all. If I secretly take one of these stuffed animals Elliott totally knows it’s missing.

Coral and I on Halloween just before hitting the streets for trick-or-treating. It’s hard to see in the photo, but Coral’s eyelid was covered in glittering turquoise to match her sweater. I was in my typical uniform.

Seriously, Postman? You couldn’t walk this one to the door? It took half a jar of Crisco and a Slim Jim to get this out. And while we’re on the Postal theme…

The line at the Paso Robles Post Office on Dec. 19. I think a read about 2 chapters of a book before I got to the front.

When the box of hot cocoa, James, and a ballpoint pen are left alone together.

Pretty random, but that’s just how life goes. A random string of events that sometimes make the most perfect sense or no sense at all.


– Jeff

Twisted And Glazed: New Donut Shop In Paso Robles

I could not be happier with the fact that there is a new donut shop in my little town. Some might say, “do we need a fourth donut shop in this town?” And my response is this, “Yes. Yes, we do.” And here’s why. I love donuts. So much, in fact, that my business card reads, “painter. donut eater”. No joke. Here, I’ll show you.

Of course, I do have to admit that four is a bit excessive, but the reason I say we need a new donut shop is because the other three aren’t doing it right.

I’ve lived in Paso Robles since the summer of 2013 and have been tolerating the donuts this town has to offer the entire time. In a way, donuts are like pizza. They are both round and it’s pretty hard to find one that I don’t like. That being said, I still haven’t LOVED any donuts I’ve come across in this town. It got to the point where to satisfy my morning sweet tooth I started going to the little Mexican Market down the street to get concha’s, which are those deliciously tasty sweet breads most people simply refer to as “Mexican Bread”.

They were pretty satisfying and I can’t think of a time where I ever came across a concha I didn’t like. But, alas, it still wasn’t a donut. When that phased out I really digressed and found myself at a local gas station buying Hostess Cupcake’s before going to work. Talk about a low point.

And then…

Twisted And Glazed opens their door and hits the scene with these!

You’re looking at an animal cracker donut and a S’mores donut. That’s right, a mutha fucking S’mores donut!

This is a not another food or restaurant review blog, so I’ll just end this by saying I’m extremely happy that there is FINALLY a good donut shop in town.

And a quick shout out, of course. You can find Twisted And Glazed on
Instagram: @twistedandglazed

But, what you really need, is to shove one of these fuckers donuts in your face and you can do that at:
541 Spring St in Paso Robles, CA.

Happy eating!
– Jeff

* Donut photos by @slomygosh

Random Photo For The Day

The best way to describe ¡VIVA PASO! is probably to call it “eclectic”, as evidenced by this photo featuring paintings, organic seeds, a candle and Marimo Pets. I mean, seriously…

Claassen Gallery Bathroom 2011

Coral went collage crazy in our bathroom. I loved it. And I love that I just found these photos that are now 5 years old. I must have taken these photos moments before I had to tear everything off the wall when we moved out of that space on Marsh Street. I wanted to share these because they are fun and inspiring and not many people ever got to see the bathroom because it was “in the back”. Also, we told almost everybody that we didn’t have a bathroom.

I don’t feel like typing much, but if a picture is worth a thousand words than I’d probably screw this post up by saying more.


First World iPhone Problems

First off, carrying a phone in your pocket is such an incredibly ridiculous luxury that’s become so commonplace we totally forget how silly the concept is. To make a complaint about a luxury that is so removed from the list of things we need to survive is totally asinine. With that said, let me be a foolish baboon and complain about this iPhone situation.

I have an iPhone 4s. It’s great, but I was totally fine with my 4…until I dropped it. The iPhone 4 was my first smart phone and my mom gave me her old 4s when my phone shattered to bits. Thanks, mom! When the 6 came out I thought it was way too big for my liking and the 6 Plus made me laugh out loud when I finally saw one in person. I know a lot of people love their 6 Plus and that’s great. It’s just not for me and I’ll tell you why. I carry so much shit in my pockets that Coral and my sister are both convinced I should carry a man purse like Zach Galifianakis in The Hangover. So…

you can imagine my delight when I found out about the new 4″ iPhone SE. It’s like Apple read my mind, which is amazing. And here’s where my complaint comes in. I was looking at the specs and came across this list of included apps.

That’s a lot of apps and you can’t delete them, which makes me so mad. There are 33 of them. On a 4″ phone that would take up two whole home screens worth of stuff. I know you can put all the apps you don’t use in their own cozy little folder, but if I mentioned that it would totally invalidate my argument and why would I want to do that. I’m trying to make a point here! So, out of the 33 apps that you get whether you want them or not I know I would only use 19 of them, which is being generous because a couple of those I would only use because they are on there. I would never be all, “I NEED A VOICE MEMO APP!” Not to mention, I need a health and stocks app as much as I need a pickle growing out of my forehead.

The thing that really gets my goat about this BS is that these phones aren’t cheap and to be forced to deal with so many superfluous apps taking up valuable screen and storage space is, for lack of a better term, messed up. For a company who’s design philosophy includes the “what can we remove” concept it’s just mind boggling that they’d put so much crap on a product.

End rant. Thank you for listening and let’s hope I don’t suffer a fiery demise for wasting so much time on something that doesn’t matter.

Did you see that SNL skit about the iPhone design flaws?


Totally Made My Day

Liz posted this on my FB page the other day and it totally put a smile on my face. If her 7 year old can recognize my card out of that crazy mess then I’m doing something right. Thanks, Natalie! You’ve got a great eye.

Check out Liz on IG. She makes beautiful and delicious treats. @the_cakestress.

See ya!
– Jeff

One Of The Saddest Things I’ve Ever Seen

* UPDATE 11:46am: This photo was taken on Thanksgiving Day, which I guess is not a busy day if you’re in the Donut Business. I did not intend to mislead any of you that Sunshine Donuts was out of business. If that day ever comes it will be a tragedy that I wouldn’t be able to handle and would have to buy it, which would fulfill the dream I had at 16 of owning a donut shop someday.

Pumpkin Spice Pumpkin Spice Pumpkin Spice Is Oh So Nice

Seriously, this pumpkin thing has gotten out of control. If this overabundance of pumpkin spice everything is a precursor to the madness of what this year’s Black Friday will bring than, as a society, we are up pumpkin spice creek…without a paddle. Or a latte.

On the other hand, let’s just eat (pumpkin spice), drink (pumpkin spice) and be merry! If you shop at Trader Joe’s it is extremely easy to hop on the PS bandwagon. Personally, I don’t do the grocery shopping for my house because my contribution is to sit in the car and read instead of scrutinizing the price of everything that gets put in the shopping cart. It works out better for all parties involved. However, I do help unload the grocery bags once they’re in our kitchen and here are some of the seasonal items I noticed. Despite Coral and I making fun of the pumpkin spice craze she couldn’t seem to get enough of it.

I’ve never heard her say, “If you can’t beat em’, join em'”, but some things can go unspoken and there is that phrase about actions speaking louder than words. After I took that photo and put all the items back in the pantry I noticed we also had a box of pumpkin waffles in the freezer and in the fridge I found their cousin, a bag of pumpkin bagels. I contemplated redoing the photo, but talked myself out of it because I have bigger pumpkins to fry. I’ll pretend that joke works here. Anyway, Trader Joe’s isn’t the only one shoving delicious pumpkin flavored goods down our throats. Just loook at what the fine folks over at Durex have concocted.

Besides Durex there is a whole slew of companies pumpkin spicing up your life this season. Jamba Juice has their Pumpkin Smash smoothie. Starbucks is pumping out more Pumpkin Spice Latte’s than you can shake a stick at. Or throw a gourd at. Either way, it’s a lot of freakin’ latte’s. If you’re looking to get your pumpkin spice fix here are some things you can try out.



Still prefer the good ole’ fashioned chocolate kisses. Everybody does.

As if boxed wine wasn’t good enough already.

You know, after eating all of these goodies and washing them down with your box wine you’re going to need to brush those teeth and freshen up your gross pumpkin breath. What better way than with Pumpkin Spice Crest?

As if toothpaste wasn’t enough and if nobody poked a needle through your pumpkin spice condom then you might find yourself, if you’re a woman, picking up these the next time your “time” comes around.

Yeah, those are just wrong, but don’t fret because if the thought of the pumpkin spice tampon makes you sick to your stomach, we’ve got you covered.

Seriously, this could go on and on, but I should probably stop or else I’ll be writing and google image searching until the cows come home. Or at least until the Gingerbread Latte hits Starbucks this winter.

And yes, I’m totally sporting the pumpkin spice self tanner all month.

– Jeff

P.S. – There probably is a pumpkin spice self tanner out there for all the weirdos that want to walk around looking like Oompa Loompa’s.

P.P.S – Everything you find on the internet is real!!! Including this donation link, which will afford me all the Pumpkin Smash Smoothies I need to sooth this sore throat.

P.P.P.S. – I can’t believe it! Coral finally found a photo of me with my high school punk band from back in the day.

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