Archive for November, 2012

Heavy Duty

Amazon aficionados are aware that one of the ways the place tries to encourage you to buy stuff is by offering “Super Saver” free shipping.

Somebody at the Wall Street Journal with nothing better to do set out to determine just what sort of extreme-poundage pachyderms Amazon willnuts heave across the land for free.

And so discovered that apparently the weightiest item Amazon will roll to your door is the Cannon Safe CO54 Commander Series Premium 90 Minute Fire Safe. The thing weighs 1672 pounds, and normally the company charges about $700 for shipping.

This is an item that would be purchased—at Amazon for $3486.57—only by somebody with a serious Problem. It stands six feet tall, features a 5.75-inch thick steel door with 13 locking bolts, and can hold up to 48 guns.

Anybody who conceives a need to squirrel away 48 guns requires Treatment.

Which brings us to Glenn Beck, and his people. Horrified that the black man has been returned to the White House, Beck had a breakdown in which he babbled and blithered about George Washington, and weepingly advised his audience to pull their children out of school, and buy farmland and guns. Because the apocalypse is at hand.

So it is indeed fortunate that Amazon will ship for free to these nutters a mammoth Fear Box in which they can secret away their firearms. I suppose they could also stash their root vegetables in there. As well as themselves.


Words That, If I Use Them: Shoot Me

I became Old Man Shouts At Cloud at a too early age.

In my very early 20s. When I was first assaulted by the word “facilitate.”

To this day, I do not know what that word actually “means.”

And that is the problem. For the word doesn’t “mean” anything. It is a no-word. A word invoked solely to cover Crime.

From its first appearance in my life, to its last, it has functioned but as a signal that I am about being Robbed.

Of money, or, most often, of the space to create.

Through a series of no coincidences, that it would be too much of a tangent to here relate, I had, very early on, read my Orwell—the Real stuff, the essays—and so was attuned, long before “facilitate” was thrust in my face, to the mustering of words to conceal, like squid-ink, Assaults.

“Facilitate” just means that somebody—I suspect a sort of machine, having taken human form—is about stealing from me.

Next, not too many years later, came “mic.”

This, a product of knuckledragging. De-evolved ’80s drooler musicians who, perceiving the English stamped imprint above one of the holes in their amps—”mic”—believed that to be the proper abbreviation for “microphone.”

No. There had emerged, decades before, a perfectly serviceable, and apt, abbreviation for microphone—”mike.”

I know that this—the fuggin amps—is where the pre-monolith “mic” came from. Because I had played off the same sort of goddam amps for years.

But this was the era of “punk.” When it was actually a Crime to, say, be able to play your instrument.

Once, I recall, when reviewing a punk band, I made the mistake of observing that a woman had mastered the guitar.

When my piece appeared, she was summarily heaved out of the band. Run out of town like a three-legged dog. While letters flowed into the paper suggesting that I be lynched in the County Square.

Similarly, familiarity with the English language was considered so “uncool” that anybody who even spoke of such a thing needed to, at the very least, be dropped down a well.

Thus, “mic,” drooling, knuckles dragging, displaces “mike.” So that, today, imbecility and illiteracy has so overrun the land, that, now, these days, “mic” is considered the appropriate abbreviation for “microphone.” While “mike” makes the majorly portion of English-speaking humans just scratch their heads.

“What dat mean?”

And I—I, am a man without a language.

For, to this day, whenever I encounter “mic,” in any piece of writing, I immediately turn the page: that piece is dead to me.

There are many more such examples. But I will not bore you with them here. For no one likes to listen to an old man, shout at clouds.

However, in an attempt to try to coerce you past the “furthur,” I will say that, therein, lies fevered jeremiads against two word-formations that have metastasized across the nation, since the re-election of the black man: “pivot,” and “fiscal cliff.”


Dem Bones

The Americans, noted Puritans, tend to regard Sweden as a hotbed of sexual libertines, who run utterly wild at all times, ceaselessly plunging in and out of each other’s orifi, with total abandon, and no restraint.

So shocked, probably, shall these Americans be, that the Swedes appear to have drawn at least one line, in matters sexual.

For in that nation, now, a 37-year-old woman faces criminal prosecution, simply because she seems to prefer sex with skeletons.

This, apparently, constitutes the crime of “violating the peace of the dead.”

The prosecutor could not explain how the woman had managed to collect almost an entire skeleton, but explained that the human remains had been used in an “unethical” way.

“In the confidential section of the investigation we have material which indicates she used them in sexual situations,” the prosecutor told the TT news agency.

The woman is believed to have used the human bones for sexual gratification. The evidence that the prosecution presented to the press on Tuesday included two CDs labelled “My necrophilia” and “My first experience.”

Katarina Öberg, head of the centre of Andrology and Sexual Medicine at Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm, admitted this was the first time she had heard of such a case in Sweden.

“During my ten years I have never had a patient with necrophilia,” she said. “Although, I guess it is not really something that one confesses to having.”

The woman has pled not guilty, and maintains she did nothing wrong. She admits to collecting bones, but says she accumulates the dry stuff “out of a historical and archaeological interest.”

And it’s not like she was keeping it a secret.

She had reportedly bragged to some nearby children about keeping knives and dead people in her apartment.

She is also willing to share her bones, having peddled a few over the intertubes.

According to the prosecution, the woman has also sold skulls over the internet.

The latest transaction was between the woman and a person in Uppsala, eastern Sweden. The buyer had allegedly stocked up on three skulls and a spine.

She has reportedly posted to an intertubes forum:

“I want my man like he is, whether he is dead or alive. He allows me to find sexual happiness on the side.”

You know, this is pretty broad-minded. A lot of people, they can be pretty picky about their lovers. This woman, she doesn’t even require that her partner be alive.

And they want to put her in jail.

What is this world coming to.

Before Believing

I’m not even sure anymore what I believe in. I once directed a Saroyan play in which one of the characters asked another if he would die for what he believed in. The guy answers, “No. I might be wrong.” That’s where I am.

—Sam Peckinpah

Shoot The Moon

When the histories are written, the Cold War will be considered one of the nuttier epochs of ur-humanhood. And perhaps mustered as Exhibit “A” shall be the brainshower of US military mavens that a nuclear weapon should be detonated on the Moon in order to “send a message” to the Soviet Union.

The United States Air Force was not created until 1947; by 1958 it was a confederacy of the criminally insane. It was in that year that USAF death doyens ordered doubledomes to produce plans for getting a nuke to the moon, and then there exploding it.

At the height of the space race, the U.S. considered detonating an atom bomb on the moon as a display of America’s Cold War muscle.

The secret project, innocuously titled ‘A Study of Lunar Research Flights’ and nicknamed ‘Project A119,’ was never carried out.

Under the scenario, a missile carrying a small nuclear device was to be launched from an undisclosed location and travel 238,000 miles to the moon, where it would be detonated upon impact.
Although one of the initial goals of the madness was to “boost the morale” of the American people, it was eventually decided that if the US government commenced bombing the Moon, the American people would proceed to lose their shit.
Similar unsaneness was rejected in the Soviet Union when it was determined that a lunar A-blast would not linger long enough to be captured on film.
When sending a rocket ship to the moon first became possible, Soviet scientists proposed setting off a nuclear blast there to show the world its scientific prowess.

“In 1958 there was a plan to send an atomic bomb to the moon, so that astronomers across the world could photograph its explosion on film,” said Boris Chertok, 87, a leading rocket scientist from the earliest days of the Soviet space programme.

“That way no one would have doubted that the Soviet Union was capable of landing on the surface of the moon,” he said in an interview. “But the idea was rejected as physicists decided the flash would be so short lived because of the lack of an atmosphere on the moon that it might not register on film.”

Yet another lesson in why Bad Toys should be kept away from boys. It was not enough that the US had “sent a message” to the Soviet Union by incinerating several hundred thousand Japanese; to make absolutely sure the message was received, it was also considered necessary to start heaving nukes at celestial orbs.

Regular humans did not learn until decades later that in the 1950s the US and USSR were competing to transform the Moon into a glow-tomb. What rough beasts are today slouching around the brainpans of shoulder-boarded simians? Stay tuned.

Home For The Holidays

What in the sam hill is going on with Captain Underpants?

What is with this acting Normal, all of a sudden? Shouldn’t he have done this shit before the election? Pumping his own gas, riding a log out at Disneyland—now twitting a holiday photo from the Underpants family kitchen.

Why isn’t he going away, as is usual practice for The Loser? Please don’t tell me he is trying to rehabilitate himself, with an eye towards a political future. Laws no. Maybe he just can’t stand being out of the news.

Whatever the reason, this latest photo I find alarming, on several grounds. First, what happened to his head? When did it get so elongated? Wife Ann appears to have a head normal for a human being, while the Captain’s is twice as long, and half as wide. Did somebody put the thing in a vise? If so, why? We know that Underpants is going in for Moreau-like body modification, from the evidence of his endowed penis, which has, since the election, grown to the size of Missouri. Is this head disability a side effect?

Also, what is with the stainless steel pot? These people have more money than god. So why aren’t they cooking with copper? They could line all the kitchens in each of their 217 homes with copper pots and pans, and also afford to keep on each of these premises a tinsmith, to tend to the things. So why don’t they?

I just don’t get these people.

Rue, Britannia

So Prince Charles is having something of a public whine about the fact that he is now old enough to need a walker, yet still he will not be king.

Chuckles’ mother, Elizabeth, Queen of England, is 86, and in the midst of a thus far successful life-extension experiment involving sitting around surrounded by Corgis, sipping sherry, and listening to tunes on the iPod that Barack Obama gave her.

Elizabeth’s mother lived to the age of 101. Her life-extension experiment also involved alcohol. So much so that those who prepared her for burial and laid her to rest reportedly did so in flame-retardant clothing.

Chuck, while recently wandering round Dumfries House, referenced his “reputation for pursuing projects with notorious vigour,” thusly:

“Impatient? Me? What a thing to suggest! Yes of course I am.” He added: “I’ll run out of time soon. I shall have snuffed it if I’m not careful.”

Charles has been something of an Eeyore about his throneless state for quite some time.

In 1992, at a hoedown celebrating his mother’s 40th year on the throne, Charles said to his then father-in-law, the Earl of Spencer: “You are fortunate enough to have succeeded to the title when still young.”

In 2004, receiving congratulations from a soldier on attaining his 56th birthday, Charles observed glumly: “I’m now at the age at which my grandfather died.”

Some have suggested that Elizabeth abdicate, and allow Charles to ascend to the throne.

But why should she? She’s queen.

Others opine that Charles shouldn’t take the throne at all, but should allow son William to follow Elizabeth into the big chair. Chuck’s ex-wife, Diana, held this view. The notion that Charles should just sit in the corner gained new adherents in the national afterglow of William’s recent marriage to Kate Middleton. Of course, that marriage is still young, and Kate has yet to exercise such royal prerogatives as taking a lover, and strolling the streets of Paris with him.

Then there is William’s younger brother Harry, who suffers from a tragic birth defect in which he was born without sense. This causes him to do things like join the British armed forces and be deployed to Afghanistan, while strutting around back on the home-front in a swastika armband.

Previously there was an Issue with the British royal family and Nazis. Edward VIII, king of England during the 1930s, when Nazis were actually active, thought them goosesteppers pretty Kool. This might have presented a problem, when the Nazis commenced goosestepping across Europe, had not Edward in 1936 climbed down off the throne so he could climb atop an American divorcee. This was a no-no at the time. Not Nazis. But placing the royal pee-pee inside a woman the primates of the Church of England deemed “morally unacceptable.”

When I Worked

November 2012
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