Never go shopping on Ebay whilst spree drinking Ten High Bourbon.
You know what this is?
Yep. Popeye. Or, more precisely, a 1930's Popeye hand puppet. A chipped paint, filthy, and possibly urine-stained Popeye hand puppet.
I bought this on Ebay about a year ago. I was searching for some genuinely sweet Popeye paraphernalia when I ran across it. My first reaction was revulsion, followed by curiosity, followed by compulsion (hey - I got my own twelve-step program). It was like one of those Totally Terrifying Toys you see. So of course I got it, now I don't know what to do with it. The Bride won't wash it for me, and it freaks the kids. I considered mailing it to one of my siblings for Christmas with instructions to forward it to another sibling the next year. The Gift That Keeps On Giving. Like Herpes Simplex II. But I figured the first one to get it would burn it, then I'd be down a peculiar piece of Classic Americana.
Tell me: was this the worst five dollars I've ever spent, or does that telescoping French tickler I got in an Esso restroom in Smut Eye, Alabama beat it? I'm personally ambivalent on the issue.
I finally got Margi linked, and since I was feeling industrious, I also 'rolled Laura's new site. Go for a visit. Tell 'em you love 'em, you hate 'em, you
want to put your want to get to know them. They're good people, unlike me.
I'm going to Providence and Worcester the week of the 11th, and the Red Sox are out of town. That truly sucks. Plus my boss is tagging along, which means I'll be actually seeing and entertaining customers, instead of hooking up with Sama for some spree drinking.
I don't think Lileks' wife got a full time job yet. I should probably hit his tip jar. He's a hell of a lot more entertaining that the cretins at the RNC. In fact, I'm going to cut off those faux conservatives and spread my decidedly puny wealth around the blogosphere. The GOP hasn't done anything to deserve a sharp fart from me. Shit, I gave Katherine Harris a hundred dollars and she didn't even show me her tits. What's the rate of return on THAT investment? For a C-note I could've gotten five lapdances and a busted nut at the Mons Venus.
Rob Sama has an interesting vision of an interconnected network of bloggers in internet radio format. Go check it out. I'm no inventor, but I'm certainly an early adopter. And I think giving den Beste a Howard Beale type hour a day would kick shit. Or driving to work to a half hour of Acidman in the morning.
You little kiddies don't know what that is, do you? Let me tell you. Quaaludes, mon. Stumble Biscuits. Disco Biscuits. Karen Quinlan Cocktails. Methaqualone. The absolute antithesis of anything you would want to mix with alcohol. Which is why everyone did it. I had a Rorer 714 T-shirt. Didn't you?
Listen, kids. The next time somebody tells you how cool boomers are, you tell them Velociman said they're full of shit. And by the way, we did Ecstasy. It was called MDA then. Now it's called MDMA. Designer drugs. Always one isotope away from illegality. Bah.
Well, schwa bores me now, so I'm into umlaut. That's the two dots over the a in German. Actually, it's not precisely the two dots, it's kind of the theory behind the two dots. Get it? Kind of like the two dots in a Pole's head are not ACTUALLY genocide, just the THEORY of genocide. I could take this into deep territory, but I think I've overstated my case anyway. And the damned Christy Lane commercial's on again. MSNBC doesn't show it, do they? Then again, they don't show the pictures of Poles with umlauts in their heads. It's a trade off, I suppose.
I'm guest blogging over at Acidman's this week along with some of the best talent in the blogosphere while A-man takes a vacation. In addition I'm working on a post for Zombyboy's AfricaBlog, where I will be a proud contributor. If posts are light you can find me at the other sites.
That's the skinny on Hillary. Indulge me while I skip ahead to 2008. HRC gets the Democratic nomination in a cakewalk. The GOP responds, in a rare fit of sanity, with Condi Rice. Will the US be ready for a black woman as President 5 years from now? I doubt it. In a close election, Bill's back, prowling the corridors of power in search of a reach-around, while his dominatrix installs Marian Edelman Wright as Chief-of-Staff. Science Fiction? Who needs it? Reality freaks me to the gomers.
What the Hell happened to schwa? I learned it. Everyone my age learned it. My kids don't know what I'm talking about. An upside down "e". Pronounced "uh". A vowel doesn't have to be an "e" to be a schwa. For instance, the "i" in "decimal" and the "y" in "syringe" are schwa's. Why don't they teach kids this stuff anymore? Probably for the same reason they're fluoridating our water. Saying schwa enough can rot your teeth. Tin foil hats, everyone.
Since the good Dr. Dean is the trial balloon du jour I figured I'd wade into the water and offer meaningless blather on the subject. For a more trenchant observation see Z-boy's take, or Vodkapundit's.
The deal as I see it? It's very early in the season. Dean is the hot shot because he's theoretically the long shot, and he fits the template the media love. Dean has done a commendable job raising cash, especially on the net, but that money can be sliced and diced down to the Washington. That's grassroots support, but party nominations don't devolve to that level. Whatever one may think about the people, party nominations are still the province of the machines. Think the Democrats don't have machines? Tell that to the AFL-CIO, the Teamsters, the NEA, the ABA, and the NAACP. THAT'S the money Dean needs. You can go into a convention with a commendable lead in delegates, but that doesn't mean shit.
Dean plays well in the Northeast corridor and the West Coast. So what? So did Gene McCarthey. Dean cannot bring in the South or the Southwest (read Florida and Texas) and therefore is doomed before he dons the mantle. The machine will let him play his hand out because the DNC will get their hands on some of that money, and because it keeps Bush off the front page. Come Iowa, however, things will change. I'll give Dean New Hampshire due to his proximity, but at some point some serious cigar smokers and going to huddle and demand to know what the fuck's going on. Then things will get really snaky.
Who gets the nod? Gephardt, by all rights. Only he couldn't blow the skirt up of Barbie Doll. That doesn't matter, sometimes. Look at Dole. Maybe 10% of Republicans wanted him going head-to-head with Clinton, but it was BOB'S TURN. Don't think the Democrats can't make the same mistake, although I doubt it.
Kerry? Likely, but again, Northeast elitist doesn't play well in the critical Bible Belt. Acknowledging one's Jewishness doesn't exactly mitigate that, although I don't know why. Some of the most ancient and influential Jewish communities in the country are in Savannah and Charleston, for example. That extrapolates, in my opinion.
Graham? Fucking fool. He's taken his bona fides as senior Democrat on the Intelligence Committee and abused that to the extent he's a jabbering hyena. Bob's Old School, and he'll self-destruct shortly, a sad example of full fury heading in the wrong direction.
Lieberman is tainted, not only because of 2000, but also because he proved himself to be a fucking whore. Conscience of the Senate, my ass. He flopped like a flounder when he smelled power. Shameful. I'd always respected him, a little bit.
Kucinich? He's so lame I didn't even bother to google his name to spell it right. He's 3rd paragraph with Sharpton and Braun (why does a black woman have Hitler's wife's surname? That one's always puzzled me). He's a racially incendiary buffoon, she's an ethically challenged buffoon.
Gores' back in! Did you know? I didn't think so. Totally cornholed everyone who put their trust in him after '00, now he wants back in. I used to think Al was smart. He may be, but he's also criminally insane, and that don't play here.
That leaves Edwards. He has game. He has money. Lots of money. He has Southern strength, he's telegenic, he's basically running as a moderate, which is why the media foolishly won't give him face time. That will change, especially when he kicks ass on Super Tuesday. Edwards is also smart enough to basically keep his mouth shut for now, then he'll spend shitloads of cash in December to craft a position based on the current situation vis-a-vis the war.
And I have to hope for Edwards as the nominee in case things go south for Bush. Because the wild card is still a megalomaniacal pyschotic serial liar from the Great State of
Illinois Arkansas New York, who is merely waiting to be drafted as the Great White Female Hope.
My longshot on the VP nomination? Harold Ford, Jr. I don't care who gets the nod. If they don't draft Jr. they're crazy. That man is going places.
My take. Worth the price of spit in Singapore.
I was watching an episode of the History Channel's The Color of War today. That's the archival color film footage from WWII. I love this stuff because I grew up on a diet of B&W footage, and the color film makes the GI's seem almost, well, modern, even my old man.
This episode was on US subs in the Pacific. At one point a sub sinks a Japanese troop transport, and 7,000 Japanese troops abandon ship in life rafts. The sub captain ordered the sub alongside, set up 50 cals and bosuns with Tommy guns, and slaughtered all 7,000. Think about how long that must have taken, with the Japs bailing over the side and trying to escape. It had to have been hours.
Near the end a Jap floated up to the side, obviously playing possum. A couple of sailors asked the captain if they could rescue him. "Shoot that God-damned bastard!" was the reply. THAT is warm work, people. You couldn't rescue them, and they were way too close to Japanese held islands to give them the Bligh treatment. Intense footage.
The captain wrote his report straight up and submitted it. He never heard a word from his CO all the way up to Nimitz. War sucks like that, and I hope some of these effete elitist media types watched that episode, although they were probably sipping merlot and caulking the tile to Blossom reruns today.
And the next time I'm thinking I'm a hard core badass I'm going to think about what that sub skipper had to do, and salute him.
I'll travel just about anywhere. Hell, there's tours starting up in Kashmir again, and I'm game. But I'll be damned if I ever ride a ferry in Bangladesh or Indonesia. I don't recall one sinking in the last 2 days, but it's pretty much a sunrise/sunset kind of regularity. Question: where the fuck do these penniless people have to go that they'd ride one of these suicide rafts? Monsoon-watching?
Armstrong has five in a row now. That's as good as it gets. Number six will be tough next year. If Tyler Hamilton can place 4th riding the whole Tour with a busted clavicle I have to think he'll smoke everyone next year. I wish he'd get back on an American team.
I'm not going to comment much on Jamaica, because most people have been there at some point, I think. Usually with the shitheel ex, right? For some reason everyone I know who went on a honeymoon to Jamaica is divorced now. Maybe it's the Jungle Fever engendered by seeing Spider tree-dive at Rick's. Who knows? Second honeymoons tend to opt for places like Vegas, where you can both go gamble in peace and leave each other alone, for fuck's sakes. Now that's a real working model, in my humble.
Happy to say, though, that 30 years of Ugly Americans hasn't changed Jamaica much. The locals are still lazy, amiable screwheads. Only now you go to all-inclusive resorts so you don't get butt-fucked by the locals too badly. We at least went the Sandals route instead of Beaches, 'cause we ditched the kids for this one. And the nudity was ample enough, although I did cruise next door to Hedonism II to see what the strap-ons, onanists, and pecker-swappers were up to. Not much. And I will say it was nice to be at a place where virtually every guy was assured of getting laid on a consistent basis, so there were no wolf-packs of hopelessly horny college cocksmen needing the sure swift kick in the ass I so desperately needed at that age.
But it ain't the same when you're so packaged. If you want to fuck around with the prostitutes (which The Bride did NOT want to do, for the record, but hey, that's only one vote) you can't go to Rick's. Alfred's is more to your liking. Steel fence to keep the scuzzier elements out. But you can go outside and play with them. I like that concept.
The biggest issue with Jamaica is the fact that it is not for people bothered by failure mode. A 51% success rate in any endeavor is perfect there. To wit:
"This regulator doesn't work!"
No problem, mon. You use dis one. The Lady and I will buddy-breathe.
"This fucking kayak has two holes in the bottom and sank!"
Ya mon. You too far out. I told you island off limits. You stay inside, no problem, mon. You go to island, problem, mon.
"I had two flats in this rental car and the nuts are cross-threaded and stripped!"
No problem, mon. I jes add price for two tires on your credit card.
"The rudder on this Hobie's busted!"
No problem, mon. Other rudder work fine. Jes stay on starboard tack, mon. Island off limits, mon.
So you learn early on No Problem doesn't mean you don't have a problem. It means he doesn't have a problem. You can be totally fucked.
And ya, the smoke knock yo dick in da dirt, mon. I'm going back for Christmas.
So did The Bride get a picture of Velocimon doing the 33 foot cliff at Rick's Cafe? Nope. Got me at the top, and got the splash. Shit. Probably shaking too much thinking about my accidental death policies. I do have a nice impact bruise on my bicep I can share, though.
Which was a better outcome than the girl who jumped after me. She landed in the sitting position. When she climbed out of the grotto her back from above her butt to her ankles looked like raw cube steak. It even knocked her Mortal Kombat tattoo sideways. To make matters worse the impact ripped the fucking nose ring right out of her head, so she was bleeding from inside and outside her nostril. She was rightfully crying. Happy Honeymoon, baby, and didn't that buzz vanish in a hurry? Just like the sex opportunities for the idiot who talked her in to it.
Every time I leave the country lately shit goes down. In April the damned war kicked off in Iraq while I was in transit to Grand Cayman, now the Hussein Boys bit it while I was newspaperless, much less unconnected.
It doesn't matter. Seeing them dead was worth the wait.
Tomorrow: cliff-divers, recreational narcotics, and nakedness. I promise.
That's it. I'm toast. Up at five for an early flight, see you folks Friday.
that I pay tribute to the original Master Po:
Kate comments on an article wherein the Administration finally responds with some nuts about this purported uranium scandal.
Although I would prefer to see Machine beating the mortal pus out of Nancy Pelosi. But I have particular tastes.
After Master Po got home from his shave today the cats hid on the plant ledge because they didn't recognize him. Now I can maybe understand that from the kitten, but Fosse's been doing this for three years now. I keep yelling at them "Smell his ass! It's him!" but they ignore me.
The next time you go up to a professional athlete's hotel room for a thrill-fuck try to have better exit strategies than a) attempt a shakedown or b) cry rape. Sorry. I got no use for either one of these pieces of shit, but there's a lot of difference between adultery and rape. Hell, even I wouldn't go up to this guy's room without an expectation of something sordid taking place. I didn't read anything about her having a box of Girl Scout cookies, either. And at what point did I give permission to be inundated 24/7 with this all-too-familiar boring bullshit for the next six months?
a word from Sgt. Hook. If there really is such a thing as rear echelon anymore, I would hope the 507th had my back.
Bogie's comments on the aforementioned reminds me of a story. In high school 3 of my best friends lived on Hilton Head, so I spent every weekend at Sea Pines. One weekend Jim Stafford of Spiders and Snakes fame was doing the lounge at a local motel, when Spiders was still on the charts. There were about 12 people there.
There was a two drink minimum (yes, I was 16, but that was the de facto legal drinking age in South Carolina at the time. If you can marry at 13...). At any rate, for some reason we only had enough cash for the first round. When the waitress insisted we had to buy another round or leave, good old Jim bought our second round so a quarter of his audience didn't get the boot. He was a damned good entertainer, as I recall. And having a busted gig because your agent or the local promoter screwed up is a raw deal. But Jim was a professional. You would have thought he was playing the Royal Albert Hall. He does Branson now, which can be pretty lucrative. I'll bet he still plays Cow Patti. And if I ever run across him I owe him a beer.
The Terror of Tiny Town? A 1938 western with midgets riding Shetland Ponies. Got some song and dance, too. Way cool stuff, if you're me. Now available on VHS!
Well, The Princess isn't too keen about having to give Master Po his Daily Double of the Humulin of Life while The Bride and I are away, but that's, well, life. At 15, she's at the icky stage when it comes to these things. Enter Skeeter. At 10 she picked up the skill of painless injection with relish. She digs it. Of course, she's also impatient to grow up and dissect things. She's a brilliant child, like her big sister, and I fervently pray she will grow up to be a pediatrician, and not Nancy Spungen.
Jay Nordlinger mentioned how much he loves Ronnie's the other day in his Impromptus. Ronnie's is on Dean Forest Road "off of" I-16 west of Savannah.
Ronnie's rocks. I used to eat there every day when I worked on Tremont Road. Big great greasy burgers and the best frigging fried chicken sandwich ever made. Jay's the only person I can think of who would put Ronnie's and the Metropolitan Opera on his top ten list of places to visit.
I finally got Master Po groomed. He had some pretty nasty cockleburs working there.
Hey, my first haircut blog. Dax should like that.
about taking down the Green Monster post. For some strange reason I decided I didn't want to go on vacation with my last post being about children of a lesser blog, or something.
Sitting on my front porch with the kids watching a shuttle launch over Skeeter's elementary school. Sure it's 90 miles as the opsrey flies, but you could see the shuttle, the flames, the contrail, and even the solid rocket boosters disengaging and arcing back to earth. I seldom missed one, even if it meant taking time off from work.
I mention this because I just watched an Atlas go up with some communications hardware. It was weak. All you could see was a puny-assed little contrail that looked like the pee-dribble of a 90-year-old man. Sad. And that was an Atlas, that put our first boys in orbit. Kind of puts thrust in perspective.
I saw the first moon shot live. Believe me, witnessing a Saturn V from 9 miles away was a bitching experience. Fly me to the freaking moon, indeed.
Blair gave a real stemwinder today. That little elf morphed into the Hammer of Thor in my book. What will he get for pissing on the polls and his party and doing the right thing? A destroyed career, I fear. I don't think he'll last until December, thanks to the Labour shitheels who covet his position and the votes of their decadent nipheels.
If Tony gets bounced I say we invite him to live here. Get him some really nice digs. Why don't we buy Mar-a-Lago from that freak Trump and set him up there?
I get enough traffic from GooberBug a nod is certainly in order. It's perhaps the only blog in existence with a ferret cam that doesn't... wait. That's gerbils. At any rate, I enjoy this site. Get the cam back up!
has a great pic up of a kitten being chased by what appear to be flesh-eating Little Debbie cakes. Sure to warm the cockles of Acidman's heart. It also has a warning that's about a generation too late for me. I figure I'm into, let's see, divided by nine lives, about 300 kittens?
My sister forwarded an e-mail that claims if you're driving alone and begin to suffer the symptoms of a heart attack you should start coughing deeply while you race to the hospital. Real phlegm rattla's.
Now my first impulse would have been to pull over, call 911, and give them my GPS coordinates, but if coughing helps I'm all for it. The bonus? I can grab my testes while I'm coughing. Then I can let the paramedics know if I have a rupture. Get that fixed at the same time. Multi-tasking. It's what I'm all about.
The one you've spent years in therapy subsuming. The one you told your sister about and have regretted it ever since. You don't have to be at fault, maybe it's just a damned uncomfortable situation. Here, I'll make it easy and tell you mine first:
When I was at the Coast Guard Academy, your second summer you sailed the Eagle to Europe. We stopped in Bermuda on the way over. I got separated from my mates at the Forty Thieves Club, so I went to the bus station to get a lift from Hamilton back to St. George. The loading area was filled with about 1,000 blacks. I felt like James Meredith his first day at Ole Miss, without the FBI escort. After a couple of threats from some guys, who were certainly just messing with me, I accepted the offer of a motorbike ride back to St. George from a big guy in a business suit. About five miles from St. George he stopped at his house and grabbed us a beer. After taking a whiz in the can I came back into the room to witness him langorously stroking his soul pole.
When he casually mentioned I should join him I muttered something about getting some fresh air, stepped outside, and did my best Kip Keino back to the ship. I started to brain him with my beer bottle, but with my luck I would've killed Uncle Teddie, The Jovial Bermudan Pederast, Brother of the Mayor. You don't want that trial. You don't want your parents in a Commonwealth courtroom while you're explaining why you were at Uncle Teddie's in the first place ("Well, as an aficionado of Big Butt Magazine, I'd heard rumors of a very special collection..."). Your mind works fast in those situations, and mine regurgitated option 1: Run!
Oh, he followed me. Luckily there was a stone wall running down the side of the road, and when I'd hear his scooter coming I'd jump over the wall.
That's the short version. The long version will cost you $20 in crumpled, greasy dollar bills.
There. I told you mine. Now tell me yours. I want to
tell everybody else know!
should check out Heinleinblog. All Robert, all the time.
over at The Fat Guy is job interviewing in San Diego. The big question? What will happen to Buck's on the Brazos if he moves?
Scott also turned me on to a bike blog that's pretty interesting. 600 miles of biking and blogging. Sweet.
links to an interesting story explaining why the Pythia at Delphi where so oracular: they were ethylene huffers.
At the very back of the cemetery where my parents are interred is a section called Babyland. It was set aside after the influenza epidemic of 1918, because most people didn't have family plots back then, but you had a lot of dead children, therefore we have this monument to helplessness. My youngest saw Babyland for the first time on her recent trip to Savannah on a ghost tour, and is now having nightmares.
Think about it. Think about setting aside 14 acres to bury your children and get on with your life, then think about what these Democrats are saying about Iraq and Bush and the soldiers we've lost there. I'd like to bitchslap the lot of them.
Life used to be rough. It still is if you're in the armed services. Why can't these yellowjacks appreciate that and let one election cycle pass? Why use casualties for votes? There were honorable Democrats once. I'll tell my grandkids about them.
Meanwhile the Republicans are spending your money like drunken sailors so that I can subsidize Warren Buffett's blood pressure medicine. Shit. I'm subsidizing JIMMY Buffett's blood pressure medicine.
Who remembers Humpty Hump? Eh? More correctly known as Shock G of The Digital Underground. I loved this guy. Wore the fake nose and glasses. A month ago the net was replete with Humpty pics. Now you can't find one. What's that all about?
I'm the worst when it comes to doing the right thing. No one who knows me argues this fact. Don't lend me your car, for instance. I just may return it riding the Big E, with a missing spare tire and jack, floor mats soaked in formaldehyde, something resembling black market platelets splattered on the upholstery, and a Yanomami shrunken head where your fuzzy dice were. Then I'll try to pay you for the damage. Why? Better to ask why ask me.
There are far more intuitive people who have a far better handle on the issue than I. Suffice it to say I neglect to do the right thing sometimes, because in a previous life I apparently had
minions compensated apologists to do this for me. Now I have the St. John's County Sheriff's Department. They'll set things right, for sure, but it just isn't the same. Which is why I need to send this shout out to my Neglected Friends (lest I forget, for $9.99, payable in Kazakhstani tenge, I will delete your following reference):
Acidman is suffering extended pain (pun intended). Please send him your warmest, because I believe he has lost a bit of rage. This will not obtain.
Venomous Kate is following the Saudi-Osama connexion in doggity style, as is her wont, bless her. Would that our State Department and intelligence services showed such perserverance.
Bogie has the beta site in what appears to be fine form to me, and it's platelet colored. Cool. Go Now.
Phillip dropped me from his daily read, but I assume that's because he would require daily input from me to qualify. Or I offend him. Fair enough, either way. He still has the most
hottie intensive data intensive site out there. Phil rules.
What's to say about Da Goddess? Except rowrrr (sp?). A Monk fan, as well. Amazing who you run across through Acidman. There's a scipt there, somewhere.
Dax has Long Island Tea up as his Drink of the Day. Kee-rist. I used to drink those with Rangers at Ruby Tuesday's across from Hunter. So did The Bride. She hung in there better than I did.
Dizzy Girl replaced her own pic with a Vargas pinup (also very hot, but not DZ) but all is forgiven as my booyah is back!
Janis has a great blog going with Gone South, but if she thinks she's sucking me in with that spanking a boy comment she's sadly mistaken. That's Misha territory.
With The Grouchy One you do not comment, merely admire.
Andrea has a new site but the same old spleen, thankfully. If I had sack I'd wade into this one. Alas, I pass.
Are we there yet, Daddy? No. Mix me another drink.
We all enjoy Mr. Helpful, but have you all read Matumbe Becomes A Human Shield? I thought so. Get on it.
Possumblog is getting hot on hose pipe. I knew I should've taken sex ed. I'm missing something, hopefully in the right places.
One of my goals in life is to fisk Mark Morford as well as Zombyboy does here. I really hate that cocksucker. Not too fond of Morford either.
Rob Sama connects the dots between retro sneaks and cannibalism. What? You'll have to read it.
How do you pick a post from Jay Solo and run with it? You don't. You read the whole thing.
Kelley is so level-headed I'm surprised she takes umbrage at men hunting naked women with paintball guns. In fairness she takes umbrage at the women as well. Memo to self: buy Kelley The Naked Prey for Christmas. We guys have been hunted for years!
Sugarmama needs to post some more. Fortunately, since I got so much bad commentary on my plans to wear my Speedo in Negril, she should take heart and get blogging over the fact I found some men's T-backs to wear instead.
Folks, that was so consuming it hurt. I hope you don't expect this every day.
on le Tour today. Armstrong barely avoided a crash that broke the leg, wrist, and elbow of Joseba Beloki by bailing into a field (see pic of Beloki at left - it won't be up long, but bike pain is my metier). Lance kept the yellow jersey, but he's only 21 seconds ahead of the Ivan Drago of cycling, the cyborg Alexandre Vinokourov. Tyler Hamilton continues to show American guts by hanging in the top 5 with a broken collarbone he suffered in the first stage, while the pussies Petacchi, Kirsipuu, Manzano, Perez, Pollack, and Rich dropped out, bones intact.
Tomorrow is moving day for Lance. He needs a stage win and he's cruising.
Today is my parents' birthday. They would be 78 and 76. Had the same birthday. As a little guy I thought all parents had the same birthday, or you were a bastard. I didn't know.
Anyway, it's a tough day for me. I thought having your birthday on Bastille Day was cool, but my dad was a French-basher from way back, and he was not impressed by the fact. I'd tell you what he said about the French but I don't want to despoil the post. Maybe a little later.
Rush hour traffic in a Northeast Florida rainstorm is always good for a blog from me. Harry Crews said his father once told him the fastest way to find out how sorry a man was was to put a suit and tie on him. The Velocicorollary: the fastest way to find out how sorry a person is is to put 'em behind the wheel in rush hour rain. Every prejudice and preconception I have about people is wrought in fine detail, like a hammered Currier and Ives on copper foil. Them Asian men shore drive slow, guddamit. Almost as slow as them Uk-rainians.
Of course, I insist on listening to NPR as well. You know I do. And unfortunately All Things Considered is the shiny strop on which I hone my road rage. I don't need road rage. Nobody does. You have to internalize it, which in my case is like John Hurt trying to keep that alien in his belly. If it gets bad enough, I may even pull into the liquor man before I get home. That's bad road rage, because it might even mean red liquor, like George Dickel sour mash (motto: put a little Dickel in your mouth). That's no good. Better to just suck air through your teeth and remind yourself Mort Kondracke is prettier than Mara Liasson, and move on.
But I didn't of course. Because it's not my style, and because Mort's actually not very pretty at all. So look at the business card I picked up at my local wine and spirits merchant:
CROWDER'S MEAT PROCESSING br>
CUSTOM SLAUGHTERING br>
USDA APPROVED br>
WE PROCESS COWS, HOGS, DEER, AND MORE
Now, I'm a go along, get along kind of guy, but this guy shares my telephone exchange, and those last 2 words bother me. If I'm going to patronize a self-avowed slaughterer, I want to know precisely and exactly what he's hacking into bloody piles. And how often he cleans his implements. AND MORE could be Fruit Cove slang for Texas Chain Saw Prime. Step around back, Zed, I got your lady fingers waitin'. Man, you ain't never had tripe till you had people tripe. Got a hint of sauerkraut to it.
Of course, he probably just means the lesser beasts here. Squirrels, coon, possum, voles. Which google led me here! And in my old Blogspot colors! It's those wheels within wheels, man. That was strange. I can't even finish this blog without my tinfoil hat. Back soon.
been reading Velociworld? From today's Corner:
YOU SAY Nee-ZHAIR, I SAY NYE-juh [John Derbyshire]
One small side pleasure of the uranium-from-Niger story (which I otherwise couldn't give a fig about) is watching the agonized terror on the faces of blow-dried liberal network TV newscasters as they have to pronounce the name of the place. Most have settled in to "Nee-ZHAIR," on the grounds (it seems to me) that this is as phonetically far from the dreaded n-word as you can get and still be understood. Good ol' boy Bill O'Reilly is sticking with "NYE-juh," though. (Which is also how I say it, and seems to me is the proper--or at any rate, least affected--English pronunciation.)
Having just watched Signs again, and giving up the fact it's Shyamalan's film, not Gibson's, I'm nonetheless consistently impressed with Mel's strong sense of Catholic faith. I'm now awaiting his Passion film. In Aramaic and Latin. No subtitles.
There's never been a film in Aramaic. Shitfire, it's only three drunken semesters away from being a dead language.
The only film ever made in Latin was Sebastiane, in 1976, which personally repulsed me, and cost me a dollar to watch at The Screening Room (wait! two bucks! I took The Bride!) The concept of this hissy fit was St. Sebastian was gay, and his Roman persecutor martyred him and had his Jew lover shoot him full of arrows not for his beliefs, but his unwillingness to give up the booty to the filthy perverted metaphor of Western Civilization the Roman represented. The sillies couldn't even decide if Sebastian was to be honored or castigated for being gay, or if the centurion was to be honored or castigated etc. etc. The whole point was to be gay onscreen, in Latin. Figure out the rest for yourself.
At any rate, Gibson apparently treads heavy ground with Passion, and you can rest assured he'll be fucked with by the elitists in the process.
Alessandro Petacchi, winner of 4 of the first 6 stages of the Tour de France, has dropped out of the race. No reason given that I could find, but I have a theory:
He's a pussy.
Mountains kill sprinters. Lance is still in second place, but he's 2:37 behind now. Time to get it on.
One of the joys of batching it is the occasional visit from one of the neighbor wives to "see if I'm doing okay and have something to eat" (read: see if I'm polluted beyond all recognition and teabagging with Philips Highway strumpets).
Let me make it easy for you, ladies. I'm doing fine, thank you. Quite sober and eating heart healthy mahi filet with carrot salad for din-din. No carbo's, even. I ostentatiously cruised the neighborhood in full biker-fag regalia this morning winding down from my 20 mile ride, mowed and trimmed the lawn, and pruned that scuzzy crape myrtle just so you'd leave me alone.
When you hear me playing Naked Gator in the pool around midnight screaming the lyrics to The Woodpecker's Hole with Revolution Number Nine playing at level 10, THAT'S the time to come over.
without Starr Jones, from my office. Cut me some slack, these were the first pics I took with the digital and the window cleaners are crackheads. The beauty of no traffic is bandwidth to burn. That blue building on the right is Corporate HQ. I'm relegated to the Bellsouth Tower. And yet look how I look down on them, whilst they inhale all that asbestos. Hah.
I'm not one for litmus tests as a rule (heh) but I can get a pretty good handle on someone by their pronunciation of that particular hell hole.
Every so often I have to pop in the Stones' Rock and Roll Circus video. Filmed in November '68 as a Christmas special, it never saw the light of day until a few years back. Could've been the obscenity of Brian Jones so fried he was relegated to maracas half the time, or Mick's Satanic goat's head tattoos on his torso. This was no Christmas special.
Wade through the crap and you'll be treated to Jethro Tull's Song For Jeffrey, Taj Mahal, and of course Lennon with his band the Dirty Mac, featuring Clapton, Keith Richards, and Mitch Mitchell, performing Yer Blues, the only extant version of that song I am aware of. And the first live version of Sympathy. Not exactly Woodstock, but most of that film sucked, and badly. This is a great flashback, even with Yoko in a bag (not airtight, alas).
I'm no Lawrence Ferlinghetti, nor do I aspire to be, but I gots books. In fact, I have to throw out about a hundred a year to make room for more. Who remembers these book sets from childhood?
World Book: The gold standard for plagiarizing little shits. As most of my siblings were older I think our edition was 1960, the green and white version, with the annual yearbooks through 1964. My parents apparently reached the healthy conclusion that yearbooks were bullshit about then. Yeah, kids' houses with Britannica or the repulsive Grolier were weird. Smelled kind of queer, like they had grandparents locked in the back or something. If you couldn't jimmy up a 2 pager on Columbus from World Book in thirty minutes you're not reading this now.
Childcraft: Everybody had these. Fifteen maroon and white volumes chock full o' tomfoolery. Some volumes had bizarre experiments you could conduct on plants, others had articles like YOUR NEIGHBORS - DICTATORS, TROUBLEMAKERS, OR FRIENDS? by Hilda Taba, Ph.D. Think this was Cold War propaganda? Hell, no. She was talking about your next door neighbors. Fucking crank. Ever use your Childcraft? I didn't think so.
The American Heritage Junior Library, and its evil twin Horizon-Caravel: American history, world history, all written in great prose that did not condescend to the young reader, and full of images. Nelson and the Age of Fighting Sail? Check. Russia under the Czars, replete with a chapter on Rasputin? You betcha. These were the books to turn a kid onto the world. I not only read them all, I still have them and still read them. Hell, I learned from the Nelson volume what a mistress was. I learned from the Czars volume what a filthy sexually deviant Siberian mystic was. 'Nuff said.
Junior Classics: The Youngfolks Shelf of Books! Now we're getting traction. Ten volumes of adventure, romance, cruelty, adultery, sadism, and criminal misanthropy. From Ali Baba to Brer Rabbit's Cradle to Thackeray's How Betsinda Got the Warming Pan (!?!) these had it all. I felt guilty reading them. I was sure my parents had no idea how twisted some of this was. In fact, I'm going to go now, as I have the overpowering urge to read How Betsinda Got the Lash.
Max Power has the goods on the Sausage Race. It was fixed. I just want to know which one got doped.
just took the plunge from the cliff on Fun In Acapulco to get over his trapeze incident from years before (a trapeze theme going now. WTF?) Elvis movies are great because they remind us boomers there was cool before the Beatles, because the Technicolor is so frigging great, and because, although all the plots suck, because they're the same plot, you get to see those jet-set freeze-frames of the sixties, like Acapulco in '63, Hawai'i in '61 (Blue Hawaii), '62 (Girls! Girls! Girls!) and '66 (Paradise, Hawaiian Style), Vegas in '64, and, uh, prison in '57.
The bummer? In the short span from 1956 to 1973 Elvis went from the hottest hunk on the planet to a bloated, sweat-soaked maggot. Life sucks like that sometimes.
Great. Today's paper had yet another article on yet another chapter of the Red Hat Society here. That makes like 37 local chapters now. You know about these women, right? They're all over 50 and feel like they sacrificed their own lives and personalities raising families, so now they meet for lunch wearing red hats and purple dresses. All based on this poem.
Now, I don't want to hurt anybody's feelings, or insult their mamas, but this strikes me as rather pathetic. Feeling an empty void because you couldn't express yourself in your younger days? Goddam. Volunteer for the Red Cross. Minister to the infirm. Take Tae Chi. Have an affair with a roofer. Just don't parade around like a gaggle of Blanche DuBoises on Muscatel. Especially down here. Southern women as a rule are already half-insane, which is how they cope with us misanthropes. Don't make it worse.
Ever get off a good joke on one of your parents? I never did as a rule, because the old man's concept of appreciation of a joke wrought at his expense involved an ample length of cowhide and your britches around your ankles.
I did get him once, though. The summer of 1968, as an eleven-year-old whelp, I spent 2 weeks at a 4-H camp in Dahlonega, Georgia. Camp Wah-See-Gah (sp?). The deal was on departure day instead of taking the bus back to Savannah the Senator would pick me up and drive us to Indian Rocks Beach, where the rest of the family was already on vacation.
At departure time I didn't see him, so I boarded the SceniCruiser to avoid the possibility of abandonment (there were stills in these parts; he may have gotten sidetracked). As soon as I boarded I saw him pull up in his car and get out. After searching the parking lot for me he approached the bus and started looking up at the windows.
Here is where valor got the better part of discretion. I slid down in my seat, well protected by the window tint, and watched. After a few minutes the panic started to kick in. Blood pressure spiking. Neck craning. Eyes bulging. I thought his nose was going to bleed. I held fast and watched. He asked the bus driver if I was on board. The bus driver had no idea who the fuck I was. Now more panic. The good kind. I actually let the bus pull out to the edge of the highway before I grabbed my duffel and told the driver to let me off.
I strode up to the old man and demanded to know where he'd been in a shrill voice. I was mischievous, not stupid. And he was so glad he wasn't going to have to tell my mother he'd lost that middle boy he didn't even whip me. Although we did drive from North Georgia to Gainesville, Florida that day without a word spoken. Probably could have made it all the way to St. Pete, but he had to see a man at the Gainesville motel bar about a dog.
I didn't realize it at the time but the Tampa riots were going on, and he was scared there would be Black Panthers spilling out to the beaches with bloodlust and worse on their minds, and he stuck on the highway with a knothead. I had definitely harshed his mellow.
Wish Dad was around now. I'd love to pull another stunt like that on him. I think it brought us closer.
and what am I doing?
Setting up the trapeze in the backyard for the leather-fetishist acrobat contortionists I met at the Mons Venus in Tampa Grilling a porterhouse, sipping a seabreeze, and looking for the total fat blue cheese dressing I hid in the back of the pantry. And googling the Snow sisters.
This is a nice portrait of Elvira and Jenny Lee Snow, from Tod Browning's Freaks:
You want to see something really cool? Here's a ceramic model of Schlitzie, their costar. Most excellent, indeed.
I don't normally publish comments, but since I finally got one I thought I'd share it with you. From the nemesisical Jack Straw:
You write about Ellie May and, simultaneously, Buddy Ebsen ebbs? Start writing more about the Clintons. I knew Ebsen only as Jed. I never saw Barnaby Jones and I was too young to remember his earlier work. I remember my oldest brother once telling me that Buddy got his start as a hoofer, and was by all accounts a great one.
The Beverly Hillbillies was genius and ethos. After all, when your comic shudder had subsided, you knew the Clampetts were RIGHT, whatever it was that was happening. They were right because they were human. The only human in Beverly Hills was Jane Hathaway, her humanity emphasized by her lusting like Caldwell's Ellie Mae for Jethro Bodine.
I never saw the movie version. It couldn't be as good; it simply could not be. It takes a special comedic talent to inhabit characters as broadly drawn as those, and to make us love them. Granny had the added quality of making even our parents seem reasonable.
Kudos to Zell Miller for hammering CBS for trying to cast a reality Hillbillies series. Think about that. Here in Savannah, Georgia we have Highway 17, also known as Ogeechee Road. This is a roughly 12 mile stretch of used car lots, trailer parks, and filthy motels that were used by white peolpe in the 60s and 70s to cheat on their spouses. A perfect place NOT to get caught, because for God's sake what would your wife be doing on Highway 17? The area now is dominated by white and black people selling crack and ass, living in trailer parks, and routinely committing petty misdemeanors as an instinctive illustration of their incompatibility with society in general, as well as the occasional felony to express their individuality. A typical year includes about 2 or 3 Ogeechee Road killings, usually easily solved and prosecuted, because subtlety is not a dominant trait. They drive 20 year old Firebirds with the wrong license plate.
This is the jaundiced eye television wanted to bring to an entire area of the Appalachian South. Zell Miller, his principles controlling him more closely every day he draws nearer to the end of a political career, is stopping them.
Yet this is the man who gave the keynote speech at the 1992 Democratic Convention, exhorting Bill and Hillary to conquer America, although they preferred simply to fuck it instead.
How many more closet conservatives inhabit the Democratic Party? Are there any more who are secretly ashamed of themselves and their ilk? Or is Zell Miller the sole aberration, the exception which exists only to prove the rule?
The Beverly Hillbillies made us ashamed of our pretensions, sugercoating the morality with often raw good humor. We need Jed Clampetts now, more than ever, with their inherent good sense and righteousness. Perhaps ultimately the Beverly Hillbillies will tell us more about America in the 60s than all the protests on college campuses ever could.
Posted by Jack Straw at July 7, 2003 10:59 PM
The Family, along with a female cousin of The Bride, went to St. Augustine tonight for the ghost tour. They went on the Savannah ghost tour last month. I took them on the Alamo ghost tour in San Antonio a couple of years ago.
A question: are females more susceptible to this sort of thing, or gullible, or are we guys so intuition-fucked we can't see the phorest for the phantoms? I'm serious. I think back to my mother and sisters spending hours
making watching an Ouijia board planchette do the Electric Slide, and my mother-in-law get regular visits from her brother via the electrical infrastructure of her house, to have to ask this question.
I remain the Skeptical Skeeze because I'm of the school that says show me a poltergeist with his foot nailed to the floor and six MIT physicists working him over like Joseph Mengele on a pair of malnourished Gypsy twins and you just might have my attention.
I don't bark about these sojourns, because I think they're in good fun. Spooky is fun, no doubt. I just worry the girls will grow up believing in this shit. If they buy into that they're going to believe in The Roadmap To Peace before it's over with.
So I want to hear from you: is this a chick thing, or am I just blessed with abundantly imaginative femmes in my decidedly distaff world?
I like that. And when it's my turn I will destroy the chipmunk-cheeked creature the Earthlings call Affleck.
Grouchy Old Cripple has a couple of excellent new Barbies up, although I confess Lactating Barbie is still my favorite for reasons I adamantly refuse to
Rob is home and gave a shout out. Seems to be doing well, although the packie is on ice (been there, but for certainly more routine surgery). Go give Steve Austin a holler. He'll be glad you did.
Better... stronger... faster... (?!?)
while I play with some images and chew up my bandwidth. Here's
Skeeter Caroline with Woody Woodpecker at Islands of Adventure. The Woody photo-op is one of the proudest moments in any father's life, even if he is dressed in some kind of homo rodeo Aussie kookaburra outfit:
Yes, my dumb ass finally got some image ability, now that my even dumber self figured out I needed to reinstall Comcast's cutting edge e-mail transition wizard. That and a course in case sensitivity training. Thanks again, my friends.
Now it's time to work on digital quality. That's a lame peloton crash at left. You can't even see the blood. Hard to find good crash pics, though. People hoard them. Sit in their musty basements when the spouse is at the store, pull them out and sniff them and hide them again. They don't share. I will, however, persevere to bring you the very best in cycling
I really have to synchronize calendars with The Bride. I just found out the fambly's going to Savannah tomorrow for four days. I'm batching it. With no foresight on my part. No golf outing, no strippers lined up, not even an animal sacrifice. Hell, if I'd planned I could have taken a couple of days off too and gotten some digitals of Acidman's new thrill hammer. What was I thinking?
Plus it just dawned on me I get Master Po to deal with for 4 days. Feed, inject, mop, repeat. There's glory for ya.
moved from 12th to 2nd place in the first serious stage of le Tour today. Bring on L'Alpe d'Huez, froggers.
I like this story. Two giant 4-year-olds wrestling in Tbilisi. 123 and 112 pounds. Why don't they just feed them gunpowder and put spiked collars on them?
'cause nobody likes me I realized Comcast had screwed me up in my e-mail transition. So THAT'S why I had no e-mail since the 29th. Rink me.
I apologize for my lack of responses to e-mails.
Some goddamed fool opened fire in a Lockheed Martin plant and killed some co-workers. Why don't these screwheads start with themselves once in a while? Besides, Mississippi? I'm used to that sort of thing happening here. These Mudders are straying off the plantation of my expectations. Mississippians are supposed to be abducted by aliens and rogered in the rectum by cold steel probes. Didn't anybody tell them?
There's that Christy Lane advert again. I'll quit blogging about it when they quit showing it. And I'll say again: what kind of warped waterhead dresses they're kid up like an angel? Doesn't that mean they're like, um, dead? I remonstrate, vociferously!
On the other hand, it's not as bad as the commercial for the country girl singing "Daddy's Hands".
I don't wanna know, lady.
Boy, when the Great Ones start dropping like this I suspect an outbreak of mutant screw worms. James, lest ye not know, was a member of the teeth-grindingly dysfunctional late '60's heavy-metal band Blue Cheer. Never heard of 'em? Move to the head of the class. Cause the rest of us are hunkered around a jar of airplane glue in the back, anyway.
In early '72 my aunt took my 2 cousins and me to the just-opened Disney World. As a 15-year-old with no fucking clue I took the only cassette I had at the time on this trip: Blue Cheer's Vincebus Eruptum. Now, I'm not saying the Cheer was ALL bad, just that they were only manageable in 30 second doses. Screeching, wailing, out of tune guitars, screeching, wailing vocals, I loved this shit. Because, when it comes to music, all boys that age are equal parts cool, fool, and drool.
Played that tape over and over and over, like a Pyongyang version of "Wheels on the Bus" from a 1952 POW camp, only with the fingernails intact (except for my aunt's; I think she left hers imbedded in the steering wheel of that Continental Mark II).
Still and all, if you're curious, check out Out of Focus, and BC's versions of Summertime Blues and Parchman Farm on Amazon. I think they actually spelled it "Parchment Farm", but, as Tuco said, it doesn't matter. Blue Cheer was a place in time I hope my kids never hear about.
defection from That Splat Place: Give the Single Southern Guy a visit at his new home. I'm so slack I didn't realize he's had it up since the 2nd.
From my personally autographed copy of God's Little Acre:
"I hate to cross you, Griselda," Ty Ty said determinedly. "Once I get started about you, I can't stop. I've just got to praise you. And I reckon any man would who has seen you like I have. The first time I saw you, when Buck brought you here from wherever it was you came from, I felt like getting right down there and then and licking something. That's a rare feeling to come over a man, and when I have it, it does me proud to talk about it for you to hear."
"Please, Pa," she said.
Still in LA. They never leave. I refer to Rodney Allen Rippy, because I know you want to know what he's up to, like I did. So here. Who does the heavy lifting for you?
Since Emperor Misha and Steven Den Beste both straddled the transgender pony and whupped it like a rented mule I'll give a whack at Acidman's 25 questions for wimmen (in SDB's defense I'm not sure he knew; in Misha's case I merely shudder).
1. Do you have a personal hero? If so, who is it?
Ted Williams. For hating his fans worse than they hated him.
2. What is your favorite book of all time and what made it so fucking good?
Sanctuary, by Faulkner. Why? Rich sorority bitch gone wild; the rage of an impotent moonshiner; lascivious drunkenness; sodomy with a pistol; a boy immolated by his father; casual murder; eventual justice. Have I left off anything?
3. What does “diversity” mean to you?
My kids will get screwed at times just like I did. And I'll teach them to look at the fuckers and laugh, like I did.
4. What is the wildest thing you’ve ever done?
Toss up. Either Holy Matrimony or watching two guys fuck in Piedmont Park when I was walking my dog. It was the car-wreck thing, you see. Couldn't look away.
5. Do you regret doing it?
No to the first and kinda to the second.
6. Can you drive a stick shift?
Sho' now. Learned to drive at 13 in a 4 on the floor '65 Karmann Ghia.
7. What’s the highest speed you ever traveled in a car?
120, I think. Even when I closed an eye the speedometer still said 112200.
8. Were you driving, or riding at the time?
Driving. An Isuzu Impulse Turbo.
9. Which is better: snakes or spiders?
Spiders. I pay somebody to get rid of my spiders. My snakes I have to kill myself.
10. What is the most disgusting thing you ever ate?
Cockroach. A bet. Ten dollars. Five words I hope to never repeat again.
11. Have you ever shit your pants? Be HONEST!
Hasn't everyone? You mean in the last 24 hours?
12. Was losing your virginity an enjoyable experience?
Not really. But telling all our friends about it later sure was fun.
13. Should oral sex be outlawed or encouraged?
14. Name one man with a fine ass.
Me, of course. Although I used to be able to crack walnuts with it; now I'm lucky to get a hairline fracture in a papershell pecan.
15. Do you watch golf on television? If not, will you iron my shirts?
All the time. Do you really need to iron tank tops?
16. Who is Martha Burk?
The new bootblack at Augusta National.
17. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Lose a couple of inches. Or buy a bigger jockstrap.
18. Do you eat raw oysters?
Only by the dozen. Appalachicola Selects work for me.
19. Are you claustrophobic?
Only when sealed in a 55-gallon drum, or at my in-laws'.
20. If you rode a motorcycle, would you wear a helmet even if the law said you didn‘t have to?
I wear a brain bucket when I ride my bicycle, for chrissakes. I live in the land of ancient peoples with RV's with 3 foot mirrors on the sides.
21. Name five great Presidents.
In order: TR, Reagan, Washington, Jefferson, Monroe.
22. Name three shitty Presidents.
Wilson, Carter, that fellow from Hot Springs with venereal disease.
23. Now call me fanny and slap my ass. Just kidding.
Lady Fanny from Omaha?
24. This is the 4th of July. Did you set off any fireworks?
$225 worth. Plus another $700 or so with my neighbors. We barely kept up with the pyrotechnic psychos across the pond.
25. If you could have dinner and conversation with anyone in the history of the planet, who would you choose?
Chuck Yeager. I need someone who speaks English.
So Buddy Ebsen is dead at 95. That sucks. Watching Jed Clampett buck dance in the foyer was one of the highlights of my childhood. Of course he was always Bloody Ebsen to me after a MAD spoof in the mid-seventies.
I didn't realize he had a cameo in the Hillbillies movie as Barnaby Jones. That's because after 5 minutes I turned off that horseshit, spit three times, and crossed myself to ward off the evil eye. They didn't just fuck up that movie. They fucked it up bad. The casting was abysmal. Jim Varney as Jed Clampett? Varney couldn't carry Buddy's brogans. In their defense, however, I must add: how do you cast human cartoon characters? The originals were iconic. Where are you going to find the irrational exuberance of Max Baer, the tough-assed naivete of Donna Douglas, or the spastic mannerisms of Irene Ryan? I always had great affection for Milbourne as well. Buddy was the standout, bemused yet knowing. You half expected him to wink at the camera.
Guess I'll go sit by my cement pond for a few and whistle the Ellie May in Pretty Clothes Les Paul riff for a few.
Okay. That's 2 days in a row I've done 20 miles on the bike. With 13 days to go before my vacation I'm desperately attempting to drop my corpulent 6 foot 2 frame from 206 to 198. Because I WILL wear my Speedo's in Jamaica. I can't see spending coin to tan half my body while I wear ankle-draping jammies. Also, I just like dressing like a Sao Paulo pimp when I'm out-country. I feel so NATIVE when I sit at the pool bar in my nut huggers screaming RED STRIPE! You know what I mean.
For some reason all the hammerheads heading back from the Pepsi (nee Firecracker) 400 decided to take the backroads today. The REAL backroads. I got blown in by no less than 5 RV's trailing fucking Explorers on a dead road. What's THAT all about? The upside? No road kill, which is a bonus this time of year. Although I did pass some nasty death that must have been in the ditch between Orangedale and Switzerland. I believe it was a freshly cracked armadillo. Life's getting a little too
routine twisted when you can identify unseen dead split animals by smell.
Well, mentioning the Datsun in my previous post triggers another issue. The Flea. Yea, verily, I abused this car. Between monthly trips to Savannah and trips to the Smokies and trips to the Redneck Riviera I racked up the miles. The odometer stopped at 57,000 miles. I'm sure I put 175 on it.
Finally, in '87, I was going to work westbound on the old Bay Street Viaduct when my coffee cup spilled. Reaching to grab it I managed to smack the concrete wall on the right side. This careened me in a magnificent 360 into the concrete wall on the other side. The old viaduct was only three lanes. The center lane changed direction for traffic flow, with a green arrow if the flow was in your direction, and a red X if the flow was agin ya.
Praise Jesus the flow was with me that morning to accommodate the paper mill workers. I didn't head-on with anyone, but traffic ground to a halt for sure as everyone locked down and watched me play human pinball, bouncing off both sides in a pirouette of disaster. After I slid to the bottom of the far side of the viaduct I realized two things. One, my car was destroyed, and the right front wheel was buckled. Two, the engine was still humming after three crushing impacts with 1930's Ornate Concrete. Despite the buckled wheel I ground that baby to the bottom of the viaduct and parked it in the parking lot of an abandoned Church's Fried Chicken.
I collected my cassettes, and, since it was 7:50 AM I walked back over the viaduct to the Exchange Tavern, which wasn't technically open. They did let me in, and after 3 bloody marys to calm my throbbing heart I called The Bride and requested a lift. The irony? I'd just changed jobs, and this was my last day on the old job, and my boss had already told me not to bother coming in. I was going in for no other reason than to tidy up my desk. Damn.
Why did I tell you this story? It's the only accident I ever had that was my fault, so there's no glory there. And I've been in much worse accidents when I wasn't driving. I once was in a Buick Regal that rolled 4 times at 70 MPH at the Tarrytown exit of I-95 going to see a Supertramp concert at Madison Square Garden in '76. Now THAT HURT.
No, I bring this up because I still dream about the Flea. The rubber stickshift boot had dry-rotted a year before, and you could actually see (and hear) the highway passing underneath you. Six months before the wreck the rear end had started whining like, well, the metal on metal it was. Horrible. And yet 16 years later I still dream about the Flea. I dream I have it, I can' find my other cars, and there's the Flea. It always cranks in my dreams, and it always gets me where I need to go, albeit very loudly.
I suppose since I never even went back to the Flea, ever, and let the cops eventually tow it off, I have unresolved issues with my Datsun.
to steal a line from Fogerty. Now, my old man was a pretty savvy operator. As a brilliant trial lawyer, law professor, State Senator, State Representative, and judge he had to keep his game up. But we all have our lapses in judgment. In about 1969 the Senator hooked up with a huckster of big balls proportions. The guy had a perpetual motion machine, or engine, or motor. Some such. Smelling huge payoff, I believe the Senator bit. Invested in this scheme. Now, as a kid, I don't remember the particulars, but I think the beast did work. However, I also think the net-net was having the equivalent of one of those unlicensed nuclear accelerators from Ghost Busters on your back to power a Seiko.
I have no idea how much he invested in this program, but I'm thinking about 10 grand in '69 dollars. In perspective, that outranks the 4 or 5 grand he put out for my entire high school career at Country Day and the zippo he contributed to my college career. He did cough up a brand spanking new '79 Datsun 210 when I went off to Emory with The Bride, but still.
Why did I post this? Because I'm thinking if this guy is still alive I might be able to beat a few grand out of him with my pick axe handle. Or just beat him for the pure fuck of it. Either way, Velociman's sleeping better at night.
Let me go on record as saying the serial blog is the wave of the future. Just as I used to sit in grimy theaters in the early sixties and watch endless serials of Superman and Bwana Don and the Strangler I think the 'sphere will morph into a more robust environment when the hook of the continued story evolves. Indulge me while I expound on this theme.
Way back when, I used to buy The Bride real books instead of culinary mystery novels. Two tomes I gave her were Selected Letters of William Faulkner, edited by Joseph Blotner, and Ernest Hemingway, Selected Letters 1917-1961, edited by Carlos Baker.
Knowing in the back of my mind there had been a falling out at some point between the two I decided to track the relationship/schism through their actual correspondence. Belly of the beast, as it were. So I'm going to start my first serial blog with the initial references between the two. Every few days I'll add to the story. That's the theory, at any rate.
Part The First:
A letter from Faulkner to Paul Romaine, 16 Mar 1932:
...The word from Hemingway is splendid. This is the second time he has said something about me that I wish I had thought to say first."
A letter from Hemingway to Paul Romaine, 9 Aug 1932:
The address here is Cooke, Montana---I have never received a copy of the book of Faulkner's early crap---nor was it the package at Havana, which was forwarded. Was it ever really sent? Since no son of a bitch has ever asked permission to reprint, promising a copy of the volume, has ever sent a volume so pardon my skepticisms.
A bit quotidian? Perhaps. And Hemingway is already getting pissy. They're sounding each other out at this point, I believe. Who is this guy?
It gets better, trust me. In the next serial issue they almost get linky-love. Stay tuned.
I think it's time for a little slice of life. Herewith, from my autographed copy of Erskine Caldwell's Tobacco Road:
Ellie May was edging closer and closer to Lov. She was moving across the yard by raising her weight on her hands and feet and sliding herself over the hard white sand... her harelip was spread open across her upper teeth, making her mouth appear as though she had no upper lip at all. Men usually would have nothing to do with Ellie May, but she was eighteen now, and she was beginning to discover that it should be possible for her get a man in spite of her appearance.
"Ellie May's acting like your old hound dog used to do when he got the itch," Dude said to Jeeter. "Look at her scrape her bottom on the sand. That old hound dog used to make the same kind of sound Ellie May's making, too. It sounds just like a little pig squealing, don't it?"
"Ellie May's going to get herself full of sand if she don't stop doing that," Dude said. "Your old hound used never to keep it up that long at a time. He didn't squeal all the time, neither, like she's doing."
Despite the fact I'm an anal retentive control freak who wanted to have his own fireworks party at his own hacienda I capitulated to my 10-year-old and went 3 doors down, where 20 friends were consolidating their booty. Went off well. A few ground detonations of hard-core explosives (those pussy cardboard mortar tubes wear out; I'll construct PVC ones for next year) but we all have our fingers. Set off my remainders in MY yard tonight.
This state is ridiculous, sometimes. When you go to Phantom Fireworks you have to sign a form that avows you are a commercial pyrotechnics professional, and will not use these devices around children. All under the watchful eye of a tricked out State Trooper, who hopefully has his .357 set on stun. Rules. Go figure.
Next year I'm going to construct a barge to float into the lake. Go wireless detonation. No one reading this site works for Liberty Mutual, do they?
My regular readers know how I feel about Ellen Goodman. I cannot harbour a good thought about her as a rule. I sincerely believe that she would endorse, in theory and principle, the abortion of children unto the 5th grade of elementary school, if necessary.
Fellow apostates, read her column of this day. Ellen has a new granddaughter. Ripped out of the belly of the entity known as the Peoples' Republic of China. Lots of hassles. Lots of red-tape. That's what Communists do best. Fuck with the working stiff. As they liberate them. I digress.
This girl is available to Ellen's stepdaughter because no one in that God-accursed land wants her. One child, man. If you have a girl and can't get the nut up to strangle her there are still a few Christian organizations allowed to operate in China that will be more than happy to let you spirit her out of the country if the PRICE is right. Capitalist bastards.
The reason I point you to Ellen's piece is because she made two profound points, for a liberal: 1) she acknowledged women have zero worth in a communist dictatorship, and 2) she was brave enough to ask what do these people think of us rich western fuckers essentially buying their children to fulfill our barren dreams.
Ellen also mentioned the world this fortunate child will have here, as opposed to the hell-hole she came from.
So why can't she be a fucking stand-up citizen the rest of the time and have a krush-groove over the liberated Iraqis once in a while? Does Party Affiliation mean that much?
One more Uncle Don story (creator of the Tiger Tooth Belt), since he and Aunt Jean are staying with my brother and will wend their way to Velociworld at some point anyway:
I told you he was a practical joker. When I was a wee tyke and we 5 kids would trek to Birmingham to visit all our relatives Don would ferry us around in his pickup truck (he was ahead of the curve in sport utility). Piled into the back thick as thieves, we'd get rambunctious. Don had a huge dragonfly in a Mason jar. When I say huge I mean 7 or 8 inches stem to stern. We'd never seen the like. He claimed it would eat our lunch if we misbehaved. Teeth like razors. So we'd hunker down and behave, but like all kids you forget, and start acting up. Don would roll his window down and hold that Mason jar out and shake it to get the beast buzzing. This had the same effect as the German shelling of the Ardennes at the Battle of the Bulge.
I think I was 14 before I realized I'd been had. I look to Don's wisdom for parental inspiration now like Caine channeled Keye Luke.
I dropped 225 bucks on fireworks today, which will barely keep me in the game tomorrow night, thanks to some sweet shells I saved from New Year's Eve. In the Age of the Ubiquitous SUV, how do you stay ahead of the Joneses? With FIREPOWER. There are six or seven guys around my lake who take their explosives very seriously, including 2 Navy fighter jocks, a squadron commander, and an Orion aviator. If you don't want to look like a complete fucking morphodite in front of your kids you'd better be in the game. Which is fine by me. I was the first person torching the skies around here, and I salute their mutual appreciation of gunpowder.
My dream? To get my hands on some phosphorous grenades. Then I could rig up a mini-catapult and have some serious fun. I actually tried to introduce the Rocket Gambit a few years ago, wherein you fire those giant 4-foot bottle rockets at each other's house across the lake. That dog didn't hunt. Nay, I was nearly the victim of a lynch mob for that. What the hell. Mortar rounds are better pyrotechnics anyway.
So tomorrow night will be acrid, smoky, brilliant, and competitive. The perfect Fourth. And I'll be staying ahead of the Joneses by setting my fuses with a Cuban cigar.
is truly Thomas Jefferson's Day. Within the context of the 4th, however, I'm curious. Who's your favorite Founding Father?
I've always liked Madison, however reviews of Rick Brookhiser's new book on Gouverneur Morris intrigue me. I had no idea he wrote so much of the Constitution, including the preamble. And he was a rake. Gotta love that. Did Talleyrand's mistress, many times. That's giving it to the French. He moving up in the hierarchy, for sure.
I forget to visit Da Goddess sometimes, because her handle is apparently TOO HOT for my Corporate Overseers. Although I NEVER blog at work, I've been known to take a peek at my favorite sites during my lunch hour. I may have even posted a comment or two on someone's site. But Joanie brings up the Big Red Hand. Shameful. I get 87 spam shots day wanting to extend my manhood and my Company doesn't see fit to block that, but Joanie is verboten. I would love to get a peek at the algorithms these twisted shits are using. They also block my access to Marvel Comics. Bastards. All code, no cod, I say.
UPDATE: I forgot to mention, N.Z. Bear is also barred on the CORPNET, which makes Eco-checking an evening gig. What are these people smoking? Do they think I'm looking for sexual gratification with a Kiwi man who pretends to be a bear, for God's sake? I need rights. I need a victim classification. A taxonomy for my toxicity, or something.
Jay Solo has a post up asking that burning question: If Acidman were a Beatle, which one would he be?
Myself, I said: Stu Sutcliffe. Second-rate guitarist, first-rate personality.
Because Acidman has denigrated his guitar playing in the past (although it was obviously good enough to put him through college and earn him a decent living in his 20's), and because the phrase was an homage to Oliver Wendell Holmes' assessment of FDR as a "second-rate intellect, first-rate temperament". Sometimes I is obscure.
The Holmes quote was in reference to a story on why W will go down as a great president like FDR. Intellect alone is a killer. Wilson, Nixon, Carter, and Clinton proved that. Give me someone with personality and temperament. Likewise, Lennon was a second-rate guitarist, but brought so much more to the table than, say, a virtuoso like Steve Morse. That's what I was saying. And what's with all the "John, definitely" shit? I mean, Lennon married a vicious, bloodless cunt. Oh, wait.
Okay, it's not Zappa, but my story has the advantage of being true.
I was weeding a neglected part of my backyard flowerbeds Monday evening when I pulled up a clump of weeds encrusted with a nest of vicious fire ants. As I was wearing a tank top, and assuming the three-point stance favored by receivers at Brotherlode's Bath House and Merman Museum in the Tenderloin District, I was needless to say exposed. Dirt and ants covered my chest. I jumped into the pool and thought I'd washed the buggers off, but yesterday my chest started itching. Blaming a belated case of sun poisoning from the previous weekend, and loathe to explore more exotic causes, such as West Nile Virus or scabies, I scratched a bit and ignored it.
By this morning my areolae were covered in tell-tale pustules. I soldiered to work, hoping for the best, but in my working casual golf shirt the pustules soon ruptured. I felt like a lactating orc. Wrapped my chest in a swath of 80-grit toilet paper and went to Gut Rumbles to look for a cure.
The Bride has given me some lotion to ease the itch, and I feel better now. I'm sure you do, too, now that I've shared this with you.
I love urban legends. I really do. From the ancient classics like the bloody hook on the car door handle to the more recent ones, like kidney harvesting. Love everything about them, from the senseless sadism that inspires their creation to the hapless gullibility that fuels their longevity.
I haven't seen too many recently, other than monkeyfishing and the one from a couple of years ago about AIDS-tainted razor blades being taped to the inside of gas pump handles here in Jax. That one died pretty quickly because it was poorly thought out and executed. It cited the Jacksonville Police Department instead of the Sheriff's Department (ain't no Po-lice department here, fool) and quoted a fictitious captain. Truckleheads. If you're going to execute a proper urban legend you have to have certain qualities nailed down, like plausibility, irrefutability, and enough local flavor or peculiarity to lend it authenticity.
Take that one about the insulted Jamaicans, who took pictures of themselves sticking the bitchy cheapskate tourist girls' toothbrushes up their rectums with the girls' own cameras, so they wouldn't discover it until a few days after the trip. That had game. Plausible, pretty damned irrefutable, and the Jamaican resort gave it a touch of realism (you're not safe anywhere! Even in a well-guarded fancy resort compound! They'll still cram your dentalalia up their asses!) It also had a moral, essential to a good urban legend. Treat the locals like shit? See what it tastes like. Try to cheat on your wife on a business trip? Thanks for the kidney, asshole. You deserved it. Yeah, I was mighty bummed when Snopes.com debunked that one.
Good legends come out of nowhere. I'm pretty sure my brother started the one about Burt Reynolds having AIDS (Plausible! Irrefutable! Did you see that leisure suit he was wearing in The Longest Yard? Ha!). The moral? Don't be a glib smart-ass cracker like Burt, that's all. Some morals can be painfully specific.
Which brings me to the point of this blog. I want to start a new urban legend. I want to humor myself. Nothing too nasty, but with enough car-wreck morbidity to achieve sustainability. The problem? You can't very well announce the thing beforehand, but how do you go about taking credit for it later? And do I want to take credit for it? Memo to brother: I need legal advice here. I never made it as far as Gratuitous Libel at Emory. Public figure ripe for the picking, maybe? How'd you beat that Reynolds rap? (Ouch. That was actually unintentional).
I'm also entertaining story possibilities and plot treatments. E-mail me. Let's make the dog days of summer doggier.
He actually had to read Hillary's book in order to review it. Small wonder it's replete with references to animal puke and golf:
"Nausea, however, is interesting compared with the actual symptoms of going-through-the-motions sickness induced by "Living History." The book does not contain even a dog-worthy return to the vomit of the Lewinsky scandal. And the stingy-mama-bird regurgitations of Whitewater excuses and evasions will leave the most adoring Hillary chick wanting more worm. Hillary has spent forty years with the pros on the fairways of prevarication, yet her gimmes lack audacity, her mulligans do not astonish, and her foot-played "improvements of lie" are no more subtle than "Whitewater never seemed real because it wasn't."Read it all, as they say.
therefore everyone is now in the peloton. Fair enough?
has changed my e-mail address since they've bought AT&T Broadband, so I guess I have some changes to make. I don't mind going from @attbi to @comcast, mind you, but apparently my name was taken in the Comcast pantheon of
helpless chickens e-mail subscribers, so they've swapped my first and last names and put a DOT between them! What do I look like, a Calcutta mail-order bride?
Allow me to explain: I used to board a lot of Indian merchant vessels in a previous life, and although most of the Captains were Hindi, some were Sikhs. Hindus travel with their wives, when possible, Sikhs do not. They like to party too much. Sikhs also do not cut their hair or beards, choosing to topknot their hair under turbans and roll their beards into a neat form.
Hindu women, of course, wear a red dot on the foreheads, although I admit I do not recall why. So a Sikh captain who was a great friend of mine told me: why do some Indians have dots and some have turbans? Because some are push-starts and some are pull-starts. Ba-dah-boom.
So what does this have to do with Comcast? I have no idea. But I used to throw great parties for my Sikh buddies. I had a gay friend with a fantastic condo over River Street, and since there were 27 mostly unattached women working in my office I could entertain in style. Although I must say I would never walk around amongst my colleagues in a turquoise turban with silver scarab, channeling Tyrone Power, now. It just seemed to fit at the time.
Did I tell you they changed my e-mail address?
is my idea of a Prairie Home Companion! A Dakotan from Lileks country! Cool. Truly, Julie at Lone Prairie has way too much going on to begin to describe here, so check it out for yourself. Warning: she craves LEGO.
My great buddies at NPR had a delicious, giggly, picaresque story on the saving of a momma duck and her babies on All Things Considered this afternoon. It seems one Pat Getter saw the ducky troupe crossing K Street in rush hour DC traffic, and leapt to save the fuzzy family. Ms. Getter actually stood in front of traffic yelling "STOP! STOP!" Chuckle.
Kathryn Jean Lopez at NRO had the deeper story earlier, however. It seems right after Ms. Getter's heroic efforts one Jennifer Helburn threw herself in front of a bus at I Street to prevent mallard mayhem. Ms. Helburn's job? Communications director for the National Abortion Federation. This is an interesting take on the value of a life. Fortunately I'm a post-ironical kind of guy, so this kind of shit doesn't bother me too much, although I'm tempted to wonder how many times Ms. Helburn has used the "health of the mother" in advancing her cause.
Actually, I never discuss the A word here (not Adultery. Hell, I love talking about that. It's especially cool when someone you know gets caught in flagrante delicto by their spouse. Fucking great water cooler conversation, that). No, the other A word. Because I really don't give a shit what other people do. I just found the story illuminating, that's all. Actually, I'm beginning to lose my earlier convictions on the sanctity of human life. We're a pretty flawed species, in all, especially if no one in that rush hour traffic bothered to squash those ducks for the greater cause of expeditious traffic, and commit those insane bitches to the rubber room. I think I'll just protect the sanctity of my loved ones' lives to the best of my ability going forward. Everybody else is on their freaking own.
Final thought: I wonder if these women would have risked life and limb to save a family of rats? I'll bet they're rodent-bigots.