Larded questions and rendered answers

What the hell does all this crap about "lard" mean, anyhow?

And what do you mean by "rendering," and "rendered lard"?

Didn't this site used to be called “The Lard Biscuit”? Why did you change it?

Is your nickname "Lard Biscuit"?

Why do you insult plus-size women by calling them “Lard Biscuits”?

What does the "D." stand for? Why do you use your initial?

Where are you from?

What happened to "The Lard Letter" mailing list people could sign up for?

Do you have a MySpace?

What web development tools do you use?

Is this site design based on a template?

What does "La Vida Manteca" mean?

Can I link to Lard Biscuit Enterprises from my site?

Can I copy materials from Lard Biscuit Enterprises and put them on my site?

Can I pay to republish writings from Lard Biscuit Enterprises, or commission you for freelance writing?

What the hell does all this crap about “lard” mean, anyhow?

(lärd) n.
1. The white solid or semisolid rendered fat of a hog.
2. Stuff that is just cool, for reasons that cannot be explained, or don't need to be.
3. The creative works of D. Trull.

Lard is my favorite word in the English language. It's also the funniest word there is. It's onomatopoeia -- it sounds like what it is. Go ahead, say it out loud. "Lard! Hey, Lard Ass! I want me a big old bucket o' lard!" See what I mean? "Lard" is a word that can never fail to put a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

I named my production company Lard Biscuit Enterprises in 1995 just because I thought "lard" and "biscuit" were cool words. Later on, I named this web site after my company. Over time, the word "lard" has developed more specific meanings for me.

I have come to refer affectionately to stuff I like as "lard." For example, high-quality books, music, movies, web sites, food or pictures of hot chicks might be praised as "lard," or "lardy goodness." Lardy goodness collectively refers to creative works and artistic materials that meet my optimum standards of excellence. Lard is the pure, distilled essence of coolness, never quantifiable but always recognizable, powerful and mysterious. Lard is an energy field created by all cool things. It surrounds us and penetrates us. It binds the lardy goodness together.

By extension, I have also begun describing my own writing and creative work as "lard." It may be hubris for me to presume that my own lowly efforts are worthy of being deemed lardy goodness, but hey, a man's got to try his best.

And what do you mean by “rendering,” and “rendered lard”?

The greasy, Southern-cookin' kind of lard is created by means of rendering. Similarly, the lardy-goodness kind of lard is also created by means of rendering. "Render" is one of the most powerful and versatile verbs in the English language. Here are a few of its many meanings:

1. To submit or present, as for consideration, approval, or payment.
2. To give or make available; provide.
3. To give what is due or owed.
4. To give in return or retribution.
5. a. To represent in verbal form; depict. b. To represent in a drawing or painting, especially in perspective.
6. To deliver or pronounce formally.
7. To cause to become; make.
8. To reduce, convert, or melt down (fat) by heating.

So you see, the verb "to render" can perfectly well mean "to produce artistic creations." Or specifically in my case, "to write." (See definition 5. a.) I've always felt like "writing" and "writer" were wimpy and inadequate words for what they stand for, anyway. I'd much rather call myself a renderer. I am a practictioner of the rendering arts. I render lard. Now, doesn't that sound a lot cooler and more impressive than saying "I write"?

Didn't this site used to be called “The Lard Biscuit”? Why did you change it?

Yes, indeed. Lard Biscuit Enterprises has been the name of my production company since 1995. When I first tinkered with the idea of doing a web site in 1997, I intended to call it "Lard Biscuit Enterprises." I never actually got a site going until 2000, and at that time I decided I wanted the web site to have a separate identity from the company, to indicate that the site was but one of the company's "enterprises." The simplification to "The Lard Biscuit" was inspired by the names of sites like The Onion and The Digital Bits, and I also liked the irony of this absurd name being formatted like a serious newspaper masthead, with the original upper-case serif font in black against a white page.

But at times I have regretted the schism between my site and my company. When I reinvented the site in 2006, I chose to go back to my roots and switch over to the original name. I love the rhythm of the phrase "Lard Biscuit Enterprises," and it sounds simultaneously more sophisticated and yet funnier than just saying "The Lard Biscuit." As further considerations, I wanted to see if I could ease the misconceptions that either my name is "Lard Biscuit" or that I am insulting plus-size women by calling them "Lard Biscuits."

Is your nickname “Lard Biscuit”?

No! I can't believe how many damn e-mails I get that say "Dear Mr. Biscuit," or "Nice site, Lard," or even, "Hey Lardbiscuit, or whatever your real name may be."

What is your problem, people? "Lard Biscuit" is the name of this web site, not the name or Internet alias of its author. My name appears on every single page of this site, over on the left-hand side. "By D. Trull." That's me. My identity should hardly be a mystery to anyone who wishes to contact me. "Mr. Trull," "D." and "Lardmeister" are acceptable forms of address, but please, for pity's sake, don't call me Mr. Biscuit.

Why do you insult plus-size women by calling them “Lard Biscuits”?

I don't know, when did you stop beating your wife? Hey, I have never applied the term "Lard Biscuit" to any human being, male or female, and the content of my site should make it abundantly plain that I adore plus-size women. I would never belittle them with derisive remarks about their weight. Skinny chicks, sure, I'll slag them off any old time, but not big gals. It is simply a coincidence that my site is named Lard Biscuit Enterprises and it contains a lot of (highly positive) stuff about full-figured ladies. People see a "fat" synonym in there and jump to their own conclusions.

I realize I have unintentionally helped mislead people by using the prefix "The Lard Biscuit:" in the title code for every page on the previous version of this site. That way, people would Google "Mia Tyler" and get a match entitled "The Lard Biscuit: Mia Tyler," which might be misconstrued as a hateful web page that labels the plus-size model as a Lard Biscuit. (Unless you actually bother to read the page, of course.) The present incarnation of the site has dropped that potentially troublesome page-titling convention.

What does the “D.” stand for? Why do you use your initial?

Donald. Because I like to use it. And also in honor of D. Boon. And also plus because of that rat bastard Donald Trump. I have written as D. Trull since 1986, when I was 16 years old. I go by the name Donald in everyday life, but I don't object to being called "D." There are also those who call me "The Doctor."

Where are you from?

I'm American by birth, Southern by the grace of God. All my life I have lived in the great state of North Carolina. I'm a Tar Heel born and a Tar Heel bred, and when I die, I'm a Tar Heel dead. I was born in the mountain town of Waynesville, attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1991 B.A. English), and I presently reside in Durham.

What happened to "The Lard Letter" mailing list people could sign up for?

I have eliminated it because I didn't feel like dealing with a mailing list anymore. I'll just have to count on my loyal fans checking in with me every now and then to see what's freshly rendered.

Do you have a MySpace?

I do, but I never do anything with it. All the action is right here at my site. But in case you're really interested, for some strange reason: www.myspace.com/lardbiscuit

What web development tools do you use?

Lard Biscuit Enterprises is rendered using Taco HTML Edit for HTML coding, Mariner Write for word processing, and Adobe Photoshop Elements 2 for graphics, on a mighty Apple G4 eMac. Lard Biscuit Enterprises is designed to look best on Firefox or Safari. My CSS formatting seems to get rendered a little sketchy on Microsoft Explorer for Windows, but then again, what web site coded according to modern standards doesn't?

I don't go with that wussy PageMill/FrontPage/Dreamweaver graphical web-authoring crap. Real men code by hand.

Is this site design based on a template?

Yes it is, although I've made a lot of special modifications myself, as Han Solo would say. For the 2006 redesign of the site, I wanted a fresh new look that would be more polished than my old minimalist-style pages. But since I'm not a graphic designer or web developer, and didn't have the patience or the skill to create something from scratch, I looked around at a few hundred freely distributed web templates before settling on one called a bit modern - bigBlue, created by Petros Dolaschjan as a variation on an original design by Boris Cherny.

I chose a bit modern - bigBlue because I wanted a fixed-width page layout with a blue border treatment and a white text background. I also wanted a design that looked cool without using curved borders or weird diagonals. The Lard Biscuit design aesthetic is built upon squares and rectangles, nothing but 90-degree angles. What sealed the deal was when I realized that I could retrofit all my old 450x100 header graphics into this layout and it looked like it was all planned that way from the beginning. And I wound up learning all about Cascading Style Sheets for the first time while tinkering around with this thing. I think the site looks great and I thank Boris and Petros for the big helping hand. Real men do use open-source web templates, with pride!

What does “La Vida Manteca” mean?

That there's "the lard life," muchacho.

Can I link to Lard Biscuit Enterprises from my site?

Sure. Freely linked pages are the very foundation that this big crazy place I like to call the World Wide Web is built upon, and you don't have to ask my permission.

Can I copy materials from Lard Biscuit Enterprises
and put them on my site?

You can take any graphics that I did not create, such as pictures from the Anna Nicole Portfolio or Star Wars photos or whatever. After all, I've borrowed them from their owners myself, so take 'em if you want 'em for your own site or your personal enjoyment.

But you cannot take any of the text or any of the graphics I have created (logos, section headers, etc.), because by golly, all of that there stuff is my property and copyrighted by Lard Biscuit Enterprises. If you want to use or display my lard in any way beyond a web link, for a non-profit purpose, you must first get the express written permission of Lard Biscuit Enterprises. If you want to use or display my lard as part of a commercial enterprise, in any way beyond review purposes or fair use, you must first pay Lard Biscuit Enterprises for the rights.

Can I pay to republish writings from Lard Biscuit Enterprises, or commission you for freelance writing?

You betcha. Lard Biscuit Enterprises is happy to entertain any freelance proposals. E-mail me and we'll talk it over.

D. Trull