Saturday, May 31, 2008

Tie Your Mother Down

Get your party gown and get your pigtail down
And get your heart beatin' baby
Got my timin' right I got my act all tight
It's gotta be tonight, my little school babe

Your momma says you don't
And your daddy says you won't
And I'm burnin' up inside
Ain't no way I'm gonna lose out this time [yeah, right]

Tie your mother down
Tie your mother down
Lock your daddy outdoors
I don't need him nosin' around
Tie your mother down
Tie your mother down
Give me* all your love tonight!

Man, I can't wait for this fucking thing to be over.

"Not me!"

*Yeah, I suffer from temporary delusions. What's it to you?

Friday, May 30, 2008

Post ex nihilo

How's this for nothing, suckers?

That sign is a bit misleading. If you're in, say, Idaho, the ones and zeros are traveling a bit more than twenty-two miles.

This is also a bit misleading. It's only about half past nine a.m., therefore quite possible that I end up actually earning a piece of my paycheck today. But I'll try not to, believe me.

Speaking of misleading, we own, pnwn, leet, whatever the fuck you techno-computer dudes and chicks type. I don't play MMORPGs, so I don't know the lingo. Old school console, baby! Sorry, what do we own?


Al Qaeda is essentially defeated in Iraq and Saudi Arabia and on the defensive throughout much of the world, CIA Director Michael Hayden said in a Washington Post interview published on Friday.

The upbeat assessment came less than a year after the CIA warned of new threats from a resurgent al Qaeda, the Post said.

I'm not a big fan of Scotty's tell-all -- too little, too late, and all that -- so I'm not sure how much of an impact it'll have on the campaigning throughout the course of the summer and fall given 1)most understand that rats always abandon a sinking ship, and

2)the abysmally short attention spans of nearly everyone -- though some feel differently, and I hope they're right -- but I doubt it'll get bumped out of the news cycle by even this thoroughly documented, examined, vetted, crushing and proven defeat of The Greatest Threat The World Has Ever Known®. Remember your fables, people.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Two great tastes that taste great together*

What to write, what to write. Hmm.

Dear Penthouse. I can't tell that story. It's made up. It's too risqué.

It was a dark and stormy night. Nor that one. Dozing heads can severely damage delicate keyboards and I don't want to be held responsible.

There once was a man from Nantucket. Nope, no more poems this week.

Wait. That noise.

Ouch! My cochlea!

What the hell is that hideous cacophony?


Yes, media?

Did you hear what McCain said?

"My friends, I never liked Rev. Hagee!"

Did you hear what Hillary said?

"Assassinate the superdelegates and their puppies!"

Did you hear what Obama said?

"I liberated Auschwitz! By myself!"

Did you hear Scotty wrote a book?

"I'm a repentant whore! For only $27.95!"

Did you hear what Bush said?

"Of course we never used proper gander! No follow-ups? Good!"

Did you hear we didn't do our jobs?

"We couldn't have done them any better!"


I've got nothing today -- and I mean zero -- were not yesterday's posts obvious precursors? Writing more crappy verse sure does sap the marrow from the bones -- I didn't waste my day off doing some extended family BBQ shindig, horror of boredom-inducing horrors -- and I'm not posting on some fucking political shit -- the above does not count -- so here are two videos of widely disparate musical styles, completely unrelated save for the fact that my multifaceted weirdness digs them both. This blog certainly isn't big enough to say 'open thread' -- isn't that what all comments sections are anyway, as if there was some iron-clad Law of the Tubes® carved in electrons demanding that we always stay on topic? I'm not going to go all police state unless you present yourself in the manner of a goddamn tool, like going off topic -- why do I fragment my sentences so much or run them on as if they were signed up for a cybernetic marathon? -- why is Leon getting larger? -- but if you don't say something, I'll merely end up talking to myself.

Or post on professional sports. And I know you don't want that. Right, Randal?

That's right, Randal. (No, I'm not drunk. Shut up.)

Satyricon, Fuel for Hatred

David Oistrakh and Co. playing the first movement of Bach's violin concerto in A minor

*title and concept deviously lifted (and maliciously altered) from the inscrutable and groovetastic Freida Bee. [Can a person or object be inscrutable and groovetastic? According to the OED, inscrutable means:

1. That cannot be searched into or found out by searching; impenetrable or unfathomable to investigation; quite unintelligible, entirely mysterious.

2. Rarely of things physical, as an abyss: Impenetrable, unfathomable.

Thus, if an entity is entirely mysterious, unknowable, how can they be labeled groovetastic? Mustn't we have provable facts and/or concrete experiences in order to quantify using our personal scale of groove? Since the entity we're talking about is a physical being, a fellow blogger, this could satisfy the criterion, no? On the other hand, the concept 'mysterious' in and of itself could be considered by certain parties to be groovetastic if one has an affinity for such abstract sentiments, bypassing the possible need for a physical object, provable facts and/or concrete experiences altogether. This is more than a simple either/or proposition and requires further study. Perhaps I can get a government grant. "No, Senator, I'm looking for more efficient ways to blow people up."]

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Monkey Business

You think Baron von Butcher and his evil minions of CHUMP are bad? Just wait until the not-so-evil minions of Mother Nature smuggle this technology out into the wild:

Two monkeys with tiny sensors in their brains have learned to control a prosthetic arm with only their thoughts, using it to reach for and grab food and even to adjust for the size and stickiness of morsels when necessary, scientists reported Wednesday.
We are so fucked.

"Yes, you are."


"We can't bust heads like we used to, but we have our ways. One trick is to tell 'em stories that don't go anywhere. Like the time I caught the ferry over to Shelbyville. I needed a new heel for my shoe, so, I decided to go to Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now, to take the ferry cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on 'em. 'Give me five bees for a quarter,' you'd say.

Now where were we? Oh, yeah -- the important thing was I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn't have white onions because of the war. The only thing you could get was those big yellow ones..."

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Rare home movie of a young George W. Bush.

If only Babs had given him that Pepsi, we might not be in this mess.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Blue law

Hope your bar is stocked. You'll need it.

Despite the title of the piece below, it has nothing to do with the above painting itself, but with certain emotional realms in my head that are the actual origin of the poem. During mes vacances, I brought it out of stasis, still incomplete, realized that the myth previously illustrated shared some imagery with what I had already written, leafed through my copy of Cheri Ovid's Heroides -- classic(al) *groan* grist for the romantic mill, as it were -- and made a concerted effort to finish the accursed thing in between bouts of couch potatoing. Et voilà ! Lest this become even more of an intermittent tradition -- hey, it takes work to churn out shit this cryptically maudlin and, well, blue -- it's soon back to humorlessly captioned photos of ridiculous humans and power chord YouTubing, with a few sporting jabs, to boot. Stretch them neck muscles, prospective headbangers. And practice the principle of perfect punnery.

The portrait

Some who wander are condemned to be lost
among galleries of indifference,
where drowsy waters lap against the light
whose burnt words are painted with vicious care.
A parade of names down fathomless wells –
found beyond long years, written in the bones,
broken on the stone. Whisper remembrance
to seal a bargain in the dark. Watch
seasons devoured, bright choirs silenced.
There is no blood inside, only thousands
of unspoken lines drawing out the last
inscription once carried on your beacon.

A fiery spirit no longer trembles.
Sweetest imperfection brushed into life –
secrets known only to me in repose,
interred in each fluid stroke. Velvet hues
given new beauty, adorned with plucked joys
indulging in the past. Panoramas
in my head. The noonday, flush with color,
dies by my hand, stricken by profane storms
shadowed in your brow. At sunset I cry
before you in a voice falling tired.
This absurd theatre birthed my labors,
hastened struggle’s leap into troubled seas.

Drop by drop sleep comes, drowns pitiful hearts.
The ritual done, you may take your throne
and reign over distant lands. Impress gloom –
an opulent kiss, worthy of a bride,
to purify me – almighty priestess,
prophesy away this plague with one gaze,
live anew an inflamed serenity.
Angels, look upon my face and be shamed.
Pastel dreams plumb the deepest fevers,
illusions, the finest compositions,
to keep the waves from opaque memories
whose vacant tower leads me to perish.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

March of the Penguins?

It's expected to be a balmy 63° outside and here I am writing about hockey instead of frolicking through fields of perennials. Why? Mainly because I'm at work and I have to do something besides earning my paycheck, but mostly because I hate your weather and I (and 42 other Americans in documented cases) love this sport.

Unlike the bottoming-out ratings-killer -- pretty redundant when it comes to hockey in America -- of Tampa Bay/Calgary in 2004 and Carolina/Edmonton two years later, this matchup just oozes history. An original six team gunning to cement its recent legacy and a younger one once headed by the best player this side of Gretzky, now flush with all-star calibre skaters, one or two of which are on track to join that pantheon of Gordie Howes and Steve Yzermans and Paul Coffeys.

Not that Sergei Gonchar is a slouch, but one would have to give the defensive edge to Detroit with first-ballot Hall of Famer Nicklas Lidstrom and hard-hitting spring chicken Niklas Kronwall. Unlike his counterpart, Red Wing goalie Chris Osgood has been here, and won, before. But I see a three-deep center position of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal with snipers Marian Hossa and Ryan Malone and wonder if they'll be slowed down enough. They will. Barely. Red Wings in seven classic games.

Friday, May 23, 2008

My Sweet Lord

My friend and Real American Patriot® Tom helpfully pointed out the utter lack of righteous, Christian religious fervor in my last post. In fact, I willfully engaged *sniff* under the thrall of Lucifer himself *sob* in writing about a member of *gasp* the lesser sex!

Forgive me, O Master of Blinding Light and Church Organ Riffing, for only Manly Men of Manliness may have any say in anything.

"That's right, young Randal! My friends...zzzzzzzz....."

For my most holy of penances, I humbly offer to You this praise of Your greatness. Amen.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Hail Mary

No, this isn't a football post. Nor is it -- obviously -- a religious one. Well, sort of. The act of creation is sacred. And it certainly isn't about Carl offering his support to the 'Captain on the Titanic.' Because if we don't polish those shiny medals (this one's for typing!) then just imagine how bad Iraq and the rest of the Middle East could be.

Anyway, the subject of today's birthday celebration is a woman who was (and still is) unjustly lost amidst the Impressionist shuffle of Monets, Renoirs and Pissarros, American (take that, you cheese-eating surrender monkeys!) Mary Cassatt. You know the drill: get to your local library and start reading.

But first, here's some of her stuff that currently resides at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Hey, I have to pimp my hometown now and then in a non-sporting context. Since the place is currently being nuked, the internets is the only place to be, mes amis.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Dancing With the President

"Stop! In the name of -- Joshie, wake up!"

"I'm sorry, sir. I thought we were doing Walk Like An Egyptian."

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Once again, a Cleveland sports team's final game is a loss. Old habits don't merely die hard, they are immortal like that dude from Transylvania. Anyone got a fucking stake? Oh well, pass the booze instead. When does football season start? But on the bright side, we actually didn't trade our first round pick this year for Jiri Welsch, a future conditional second rounder, a hoagie and a six-pack.

Boston vs. Detroit: The brutal, defensive-minded basketball you saw in the Cavs-Celtics series isn't going away. Neither of these teams starting five is relentlessly athletic like the Nuggets (they're not a collection on knuckleheads like them, either) -- the price to be paid when you're on the wrong side of 30 -- so expect a bunch of epic, 82-79 Somme-esque clashes. But one of these teams has proven that it can win on the road. The other hasn't. Can you guess which one? Pistons in six.

L.A. Lakers vs. San Antonio: The defending champs gutted out a victory against The Man Who Dare Not Be Fouled. I don't know how many times I watched both LeBron James and Paul Pierce go into the paint and get hacked, all to the tune of tra-la-la-la I swallowed my whistle. The refereeing across the entire hardwood landscape has been bizarre. Witness The Fucking Lakers shooting about 752 more free throws a game than the Jazz. Didn't help that Carlos the Traitor never showed up. Pau Gasol, unlike Tyson Chandler, cannot guard Tim Duncan. Pau Gasol, unlike Tyson Chandler, has an NBA-quality offensive game. These teams, like nearly all the second round matchups, are evenly matched. The Fucking Lakers get one more home game. La -- must. not. type. oh. the. pain. -- kers in seven.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Prisoner

The origin of this post has many roots. In the course of providing much metallic and musical moving pictures, maddeningly missing, (okay, I'll stop) a gross oversight, has been the legendary Iron Maiden. But which song?

This one!

Why? First, the monstrous, Zeppelinesque riff crushes. Second, the inspiration for the song, the cult teevee program, The Prisoner, is as wonderful as its theme is disturbing, and closer to reality than it was when the show originally aired way back in the Decade of the Filthy Hippie. Third, because I care about you dudes and chicks, I stumbled across the excellent version that you watched -- you fucking better have, I watch your non-metal stuff -- that interspersed the classic Hammersmith footage from 1982 with shots from the program. Why is this one better? Fewer shots of Bruce Dickinson's sartorial impersonation of the Festrunk Brothers. Shudder. Lastly, because I think it follows a stellar post (with the same title) by the inscrutable Scarlet W. Blue that was the predominant reason for the long-winded one you're reading right now.

I rarely do any family and/or parenting posts because it just isn't my gig. This one, concerning the joy of our youngest daughter at experiencing one of her loves, ballet, might be the only one I've done. Don't want to ruin the mystery behind the cartoon baseball cap with any touchy-feely shit. Anger, grimace, grumble, sulk, brood.

As is patently evident, I'm a big fan of the creative process and the resulting works that illuminate the human condition. Our youngest inherited my passion for music, our oldest for art. Unlike their old man, they're actually good at what they do. I imagine if we had a third, he or she would be into literature and poetry, but there is no way on The Flying Spaghetti Monster's not-as-green-as-she-used-to-be earth that we're going to have another whiny ass mouth to clothe and feed. Hades no.

Anyway, the point of this post, essentially a corollary to Scarlet's, is the experience by mom and/or pop with the typical modus operandi of the powers-that-be to frown upon those would dare to *gasp* have an imagination, to not toe the youthful party line. Those pesky things sure can get in the way of rote memorization and regurgitation of poorly-taught and understood truthiness, can't they. I count my lucky stars -- hey, I think one is headed this way. Oh, shit. -- that we haven't had to deal with anything that ridiculous. Yet. Our artist has, on more than one occasion, gotten into arguments with her art teacher about technique. She knows what the hell she is doing, so I imagine it's more of a 'yeah, I know we're practicing this, but this looks better' thing. When in doubt, defer to the creator. She understands what she wants. But given her penchant for exceedingly strange, obtuse, highly comical, disjointed, violent and bizarre creations and stories illustrated with her considerable talent -- that she no doubt does while in other classes; the smart ones are always fucking bored, aren't they -- I have long expected one of those letters that I imagine would go something like this:

Mr. and Mrs. Graves,

Your daughter frightens us with her dark moods and we think she may be into dark things and be formulating dark plans as we print out this form letter. We don't want to die. Please make her more vanilla and white bread and less Neapolitan topped by crumbled up cookie things with a whiskey chaser.


Principal Bureaucrat
Well, Mr. PB (Mr. Pibb?) my wife and I both agree that there is far too little emphasis and support for the creative process in this American golden bronze papier-mâché age. I completely sympathize with your position that requires you to shape, to the best of your NCLB and military/industrial/entertainment complex-fueled ability, the future cubicle jockeys of the corporate world whose only task as an expendable automaton is to funnel their by-the-book education into the machine in order to increase the bottom line of those who already possess very large posteriors, but once, just once, show the tiniest fraction of a spinal column, stick out that chest, apply that stiff upper lip, and mellow out, man. Those that are different, that shuffle through life to the beat of a bohemian, scruffy drummer are the ones that drive the soul of humanity to greater heights.

Someday, after your ugly buildings of concrete and glass have long crumbled into dust, after your lack of not just funding, but place in the daily discourse, after your transgressions and material goods have been written off and thrown on the scrap heap, forgotten by your descendants, the monuments that remain, that move us to try new things, not push, but rip the envelope open -- a film, a book, a poem, a song, a novel approach to a scientific problem -- these will be the things that release the human experience from its quotidian cell. It's our duty as parents to make sure our kids never become prisoners of the increasingly omnipresent, stupefying bars closing before them day after day. There may indeed be a lock, but you can give them the key. We may all be classified as a number, but we don't have to live that way.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Even More Splotchy's Viral Theatre Redux

Bloody hell, a second infection! Shouldn't some double jeopardy clause apply to electronic pathogens? My initial misgivings did dissipate immediately when I learned that the mutating story had taken a Lovecraftian twist, and such pro-Cthulhu propaganda can only help me to survive a few extra minutes once our next president begins the devouring of humanity.

I had been shuffling around the house for a few hours and already felt tired. The doorbell rang. I opened the front door and saw a figure striding away from the house, quickly and purposefully. I looked down and saw a bulky envelope. I picked it up. The handwriting was smudged and cramped, and I could only make out a few words. (Splotchy)

Despite the throbbing pain in my knees and the dull ache in my lower back, I bent down slowly and picked up the envelope...

Oh no. It did not say this, did it?

Oh yes, it did. It did.

The handwriting was familiar in a way that inspired a cold sweat and a bout of nausea. It was the penmanship of my former husband. You know - the one that was presumed dead.

He disappeared in a suspicious blogging related accident a number of years ago and was never heard from again. I was devastated. I had hated the blog, loathed the thing. What began as a hobby that took but a few minutes a day had morphed into an addiction, the proportions of which could not be measured. It was pure evil.

The blog turned into a cruel and demanding mistress and her siren song was more than I could compete with. One day he left for an evening event, never to return again.

All fingers pointed to one blogger, but I could never get the charges to stick. That one is slick- slick, slick, slick. He can talk a good game and write like nobody's business. But there is something about him, it just is not right.

So my husband was gone, that other one kept blogging and I had to rebuild my life, which I did.

So I finally had the bastard declared dead. And now this. (FranIam)

I took the envelope inside and got out a magnifying glass. I studied the scribblings on the front and made out the words “This is for you. You KNOW why” just above the undead bastard’s name. What the hell?

What could it be? What did he mean, I “KNOW” why? What did I do? I had never been anything but faithful to him and his "interests." I followed his stupid blog as it meandered through the vapid expanses of his small mind, trying my best to be polite when he talked about some comment he’d gotten on a particular post, or a funny link he’d dropped into a post.

Just thinking about it made my stomach hurt.

Despite a fleeting fear that there might be anthrax powder in the envelope, I opened it and pulled out the contents. (dguzman)

A noodle, a meatball and one of the six legs of a squid? (Squid have six legs, not eight, right? Unsure I rushed to my computer to ask The Lord Google. OMG, I was wrong! Squid do have eight legs. And two tentacles. Like cuttlefish. I digress. Damn you Google!)

What was he working on when he had that blogging accident? I thought back to the nights of feverish typing. The nights the keyboard fairly reeked of despair, flopsweat and ricola. He would babble "vision quest" "noodly appendage" "the alpha and the semolina" "green sticky spawn of the stars". This last I just attributed to far too much interest in the pussy photos of Britney Spears.

In shaky handwriting was the couplet:

That is not dead which can eternal lie.
And with strange æons even death may die

I felt that I was beginning to understand. He had been killed in an epic battle of Good versus Not-So-Good or even "meh!" (Jess Wundrun)

Feeling the need for sleep, I turned off the computer, flicked the lightswitch and headed up through the pitch to bed, where, within minutes, I was floating in the blissful land of Nod.

Rudely interrupted by the nocturne call of nature -- you know, a can of Schlitz in the fridge -- I stumbled down the stairs, not into the ground floor of our house, but into a heretofore unknown level of hell.

My Flying Spaghetti Monster, the stench!

I had forgotten to dispose of the noodle, meatball and squid leg. Yes, that had to be the reason for such a nauseating, putrescent odor. Holding my nose, I turned the corner into the den. The computer desk was empty, save for a translucent, vaguely green goo that had slid onto the floor, inexplicably forming what seemed to be the tracks of an inhuman, shambling beast.

My eyes followed their path. It led into the kitchen. (Randal Graves)

The duly poisoned:
Freida Bee (that's for tagging me twice in one week!), becca, Spartacus.

Friday, May 16, 2008

You're my best friend

"I told you I had to go to the bathroom."

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Splotchy's Viral Theatre Redux

My second tag this week. Normally, when someone throws the gauntlet down in such an aggressive, demonic (but not always wide) stance, I'm ready to rejoice because it means I have to put less thought into a post and you all know how much I love to not think.

Sheesh, don't be so fucking quick to agree. Assholes.

But this tag is a sword with one of those high-falutin' double edges that you can't order off the teevee but have to travel to Old Europe to get: another infection by the greatest meme in the history of the known universe (I can't speak for any parallel ones).

Anyway, Señor Spielbergo has released this New-and-Improved® virus into the electrons and I'm afraid I've been stricken. I'm even more afraid of these exploding pustules on my skin. I'm most afraid of my contribution which really does suck vast fields of ass. Oh well. On with the show.

I had been shuffling around the house for a few hours and already felt tired. The doorbell rang. I opened the front door and saw a figure striding away from the house, quickly and purposefully. I looked down and saw a bulky envelope. I picked it up. The handwriting was smudged and cramped, and I could only make out a few words. (Splotchy)

"Meet me at two o'clock at Grisham Square. Don't be late!"

What? I already had an appointment at that time. In fact, that was the only reason I had even taken off work that Wednesday. But, when I saw the photos, I knew I had to go and see what the hell was going on. Oh gosh, now I wish I hadn't, but how was I to know then that Elizabeth would take this whole thing so far? (Freida Bee)

She had exposed the nefarious Republican oil-for-neckties program, skillfully dismantling its diabolically brilliant mind control scheme, giving each man, woman and child his or her freewill back, and this had made her a national, nay, worldwide, heroine, but -- the fear -- the look of stark, otherworldly terror on the -- could they even be classified as faces anymore?

No, I had to swallow the overwhelming dread that was threatening to force me into complete shutdown, collapsing on the hallowed ground where I would silently, naively wish it all away until it came for -- me. Fruitlessly wiping away a flood of icy sweat, I knew I had to steel my resolve, look upon those photos once more and let them burn their horrific images in my psyche. Permanently. (Randal Graves)

Sorry, you've been drafted. Get writing (or don't):
Dean, anita, (0)(0), Scarlet, Utah Savage.

Ghosts and Specters

Security camera footage of yours truly buried in research for today's post.

I know we often criticize purveyors of crocodile tears and 'thank you sir may I have another!' policies such as Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter, but perhaps it's time to bury our doubt and righteous indignation once and for all, especially after yesterday's rant, an instant classic on a timely and vitally important topic that speaks to our nation's very soul:

"I have documented the strong factual case that a Justice Department investigation was neither objective nor adequate," Specter told on Wednesday evening. "If the President doesn't move for an independent investigation, then there will be a permanent black mark on the Bush Administration and the United States' record will be historically tainted. Depending on the public reaction, I may ask the Senate Judiciary Committee to hold hearings on the FISA exemption."

Arlen, you sonofabitch, go on with your bad s -- oh, he was talking about that.

There's a lesson to be learned here, children: don't drink and drive surf.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Highway to Hell

You thought we'd be taking another road? Only one we know.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

You can't bury the past like you can a corpse

You know, I'm supposed to be on vacation for a good part of the upcoming week, but getting frozen by tagging is a risk we take when we instigate electrification of our computational machinery. At least it happened before the Official Slack® begins. Thus, for your edification/whimsy/boredom, I humbly answer the following questions. I hope these frostbitten digits don't hinder my world-renowned typing skills too much.

Ten years ago, what were you doing?

"Come on Randal, let's blow this popsicle stand."

The same thing I'm doing now in terms of parenting, husbandry, employment and entertainment, except I watch The X-Files on DVD instead of over broadcast television. Yeah, baby, I sure do get around.

Five things on today's tomorrow's 'to-do' list:

Since I'm off (did I mention that I will not be at work? Muahahahaha, etc) enjoying the quiet while the kids are at school only if my neo-redneck neighbor actually goes to his job that I assume he might have thereby preventing him from working on his junky, shit-ass cars, read, write, listen to tunes, vegetate.

If I were a billionaire, I would:

Buy a billion things at the dollar store. (no, I'd probably do some 'good,' but how sexy an answer is that, though I'm sure there will be some sex involved. Of course with my wife. And Gillian Anderson. No, not at the same time. Unless they're both okay with it, which they would be, right?)

Three bad habits I have:

If I told you, I'd have to kill you. Or throw up all over your shirt.

Five places I've lived:

Cleveland, Akron, Columbus, my head, my other head.

Five jobs I've had:

Salaried sex worker, state employee, federal employee, fortune teller, hot dog cart operator.

Fellow suckers travelers:

The Flying Nunly, La Belette Rouge, b. I can't recall who has and hasn't been tagged by this, so feel free to tag yourself. Just keep it down to a small roar, okay? I'm trying to relax.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Man With The Golden Gun Hair*

"My friends..."

"Um, you're talking to just me, John."

"I like baseball. Do you like bas --"


"Once I went fishing on Cape Cod."

I've got nothing today, dudes and dudettes -- though it is nice being at home instead of work on a Saturday for once -- so close your eyes for a moment and think of another world. That's right, close them all away ('all' for those of you blessed or cursed with multiple eyeballs, apparently. Why didn't I simply correct that awkward phrase? Beats me.) Clear your mind of clutter and concentrate on this magical place akin to naught but childish fantasy and mysterious whimsy! A thoroughly mad, impossible, fantabulous world of the truly bizarre, one in which *gasp!* Chris Matthews is not a flesh-eating diabolic beast of primordial myth. It's hard work, your President knows.

So have fun this weekend with the woefully inadequate Mad Lib below. No peeking, you bastards! The effort that busts the most guts in comments gets a prize: bragging rights!

What, you thought there would be hard cash involved? Capitalist pigs.

1. noun: a place, adjective, noun, verb: past participle, noun, adjective, famous television idiot.
2. adjective, noun, verb, adjective, noun.
3. adjective, noun, noun.
4. adverb, verb, unconventional occupation.
5. another famous television idiot, adjective, noun, adverb, adjective, noun.
6. vulgarity, adverb, verb, adjective, noun, adjective, noun, adjective.
7. adjective, noun: disarmingly weird locale, noun: plural, adjective, noun: plural.

I said no peeking!

I fucking mean it!

Do I not look Very Serious?

If you scroll down I'll stick a stamp to your ass and mail you to The Undisclosed Location. You really want to be Cheney's next meal?

That's right. Scroll back up like good little boys and girls.

1. One fine, sunny beltway day, Tweety was going to ____noun: a place____ to have his ____adjective____ ____noun____ ____verb: past participle____. On the way, he met his ____noun____, the ____adjective____ bag of gas, ____famous television idiot_____. Tweety was surprised.

2. "Wow, you ____adjective____ ____noun____, I didn't expect to see you ____verb____ your ____adjective____ ____noun____ this early!"

3. "You know the old saying, 'The ____adjective____ ____noun____ catches the ____noun____.'"

4. "Something catches what? Sorry, I wasn't paying attention. I was thinking of The Straight Talk Express ____adverb____ ____verb____. What a colossus of ____unconventional occupation____!"

5. "Shhh! ____another famous television idiot____ might hear you! Do you want that ____adjective____ ____noun____ ____adverb____ blabbing to you-know-who about your ____adjective____ ____noun____ fetish?"

6. "Oh, relax. Don't be such an elitist ____vulgarity____. I'll just ____adverb____ ____verb____ this ____adjective____ ____noun____ until their ____adjective____ ____noun____ disappears like evidence of my ____adjective____ man crushes on vile bastards."

7. And Tweety said goodbye, whistling a ____adjective____ tune as he headed back to his ____noun: disarmingly weird locale____ with his stack of ____noun: plural____ and his ____adjective____ ____noun: plural____ to spend the day reminiscing about John Sidney McCain.

*yes, I realize that it's now red. Blame Ian Fleming for not being proactive.

Friday, May 9, 2008


The spark of creativity is a moody creature, and this is the reason I swig humbly offer libations of wine and eat pizza rolls sacrifice virgins to the indifferent cosmos for the gift of others who heed its call when my muse is out of town on a raging bender. Sorry Erato, that was you calling the porcelain phone, was it not? Now I'm thinking of Roland, after so much bloodshed, blowing his horn at last. Sure, he fought valiantly and with honor and all those other medieval buzzwords, but at the end of the day, he got chopped into teeny, tiny pieces.

Sort of how I feel when I try to write.

Yeah, there's a finished work lying on the table in front of me, but goddamn, is it terrible. Perhaps I should find me a nice, shiny, sharpened broadsword and get to hacking, you hack. Laugh, damn you, laugh.

Anyway, while tossing the bloody, versified chunks into the freshly dug (imaginary, bien sûr) grave and debating which musical piece or work of art I should conjure up in order to spark the creative process, I remembered a painting done by the talented susan -- she tells quite interesting stories, in addition to being an artiste -- that I enjoyed very much, subsequently attempting to write a poem using said painting as my source. Whether it captured a fraction of, or one view of, the work's essence is not for me to decide. The finished product, as you will see, pales in comparison to her wonderful watercolor, but I hope the act itself will transcend any inherent flaws in the lines below.

La danseuse de ciel

Deep light waxes long in brilliant fire
for flora to bloom, blessed by winter’s grace
to display the dawn smiling in a face,
and the storming of a new desire.

Verdant days stray, playing a simple suite,
catching colors in voicing harmony.
Fools and fiends struck by natural sorcery,
worn down by the thunder of their deceit.

Bright dancer, descend from your ancient throne,
changing violet shades to thickest black.
Disappearing sight finds at last the track
where waning, disheartened gloom has since flown

under the cover of your silvered strands
bathing the petals of these wretched hands.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The post you've been dying to read

More hockey predictions!

Once again, I batted .500. I'm going to start flipping a fucking coin. Guess which one of the following will be incorrect and win not a goddamn thing!

Pittsburgh vs. Philadelphia: Come on. Did anyone outside of professional jackass Bobby Clarke think a bunch of young kids, an untested goalie, a free agent signing and a deadline deal would end up four games from playing for Lord Stanley's drinking glass? It's a hell of a story. And it ends at the hands of the most dynamic duo of youth in the sport since Gretzky and Messier. If the Penguins don't fuck this up, can anyone see anything but multiple championships in their collective future? Penguins in six.

Detroit vs. Dallas: There is A Country For Old Men when you have Johan Franzen pretending to be Mike Bossy. Nine goals in four games? Will Randal overuse italics? Stay tuned, true believers! Oh, yeah, the hockey. Dallas is finally living up to its talent (having added playoff-tested and former Conn Smythe winner Brad Richards hasn't hurt), but overtime games, especially those of the near-140-minute variety, can go either way. The Stars are good, but not good enough. Red Wings in six.

The Wizard

Evil power disappears
Demons worry when the wizard is near
He turns tears into joy
Everyone's happy when the wizard walks by

Almost everyone.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Clash of the Titans (and one small man)

"There's two of you legendary figures of the creative spirit sharing the same birthday, two of you kings among musical men? We're gonna need a bigger cake."

Pierre-Laurent Aimard and gang performing the fourth movement of Johannes Brahms' first piano quartet. Odd to see such cuts in a classical YouTube. Someone's been overdosing on some MTV.

If someone held a gun to my head and instead of asking for the three or four singles in my wallet -- take my debit card while you're at it, dumbass, there's jack shit in the bank, too -- asked me to choose my favorite work of his, I would have to say the third symphony. No embed allowed (c'est terrible !) so check out the first movement here. Or better yet, go buy the damn thing.

Michael Tilson Thomas conducting the last movement of Piotr Tchaikovsky's indestructible fourth symphony. Hey, who doesn't love a bombastic finalé?

"Did someone say bombs? Heh, heh."

Chimpy, there's more to love in life than having a torrential downpour of munitions turn vast fields of real estate into a mélange of cracked stone, burnt timber, scattered body parts and fragmented humanity. Yes, there are other things things to love.

Including that giant chocolate cake over there.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

I can haz read books, too!

"Where's the blow, er, coke? Heh, heh."
"Over there, Mr. President."

What The Hell Have I

Nothing today sir
or madam, as the case may
be, but a grand theft --

not auto, but this
old poetical style
from ancient isles.

A posting so fine
later, unless I do not,
laughing at suckers --

comme moi, 'cause Sony
won't permit embeds of stuff
like this rockin' tune

so don't blame me for
the unmoving space above,
ire at bigwigs.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

[insert own clever, basketball-related title]

Yes, my brain is currently in the frying pan. No, not because of that, but because of this. At least it's not a math paper. Shudder. Anyway, here's another batch of poorly-predicted, hoops-related guesses. Hey, as Smooth Jimmy Apollo says, when you're right 52% of the time, you're wrong 48% of the time. (For the record, I am currently 6-1, anxiously awaiting the outcome of the woefully underachieving Celtics. Forget all about my hockey predictions. Go Habs!)

"Jeez, what's taking you guys so long?"

Oh, and Boston, you with the 66-16 record and league-best point differential? Thanks for fucking up the timely posting of my picks. I'd like to assume that you'll win at home tomorrow, but you know what they say when you assume. It makes a Republican out of you and me. The ungodly 37-45 juggernaut should fall by your hand, but just in case:

IF Boston doesn't succumb to the greatest upset in NBA playoff history, Boston vs. Cleveland: Well, I did say it would be ug-lee. Celtics, you guys indeed look to be prime candidates for the grave or a few lines in the DSM-IV. Your most dangerous weapon, your defense, got picked apart by rookie Al Horford and Zaza Pachulia while getting matched on the boards by the Joshes. Oh, yeah, you're real scary. I'd like to see Wally World duplicate his game six exploits before he makes me a believer, but if the goddamn Hawks -- they were, and I cannot emphasize this enough, thirty-seven and forty-five! -- can beat you, what chance does an equally average team with the crucial difference of having the best player in league carry? Cavs in six.

Yes, before you move to pick your jaw up off the floor, I'm fully aware of the bizarre, almost supernatural sight of a Cleveland sports fan showing any confidence whatsoever. You don't think it's giving me a case of deathly, the-end-of-the-world-is-nigh fright, as well?

IF the Boston giant gets slain by the pawns missing a king, queen, both bishops and a knight, Cleveland vs. Atlanta: 'bout time that goddamn city feels some sporting pain. Could this have been set up any better? Getting to play the undoubted worst team in the playoffs with a potential matchup against another team who, regardless of their public yammerings, would rather have played the Celtics? You're not going to see a repeat of the 1981 Western conference or the Sonics in 1987. The sub-.500 team goes down like they should. Cavs in five.

Detroit vs. Orlando: Hell if I know which Detroit team will show up. Yes, their collective tooth is a bit long, but they've added some young guys who actually contribute a few quality minutes here and there. Neither Rasheed, McDyess nor Jason Maxiell can handle 20/20 guy Dwight Howard -- Dwight, please, get a Mean Streak®. You'll be able to win series nearly all by yourself if you do, thereby joining the pantheon of all time great pivotmen -- and experience is overrated. Just ask Dallas. But, Motor City has home court and, well, see the first sentence of this paragraph. I'd dearly love to pick Orlando, but Pistons in seven.

L.A. Lakers vs. Utah: Kobe, enjoy your lifetime achievement award as you get blistered in the paint. Carlos The Traitor is due to break out and as someone lit an inferno under Mehmet Okur's shoes -- even AK-47 is a valued member of Mormon society once again -- Utah has the superior starting five. For the Lakers, going up against such a tough squad with Pau Gasol instead of without is triple-word score groovy, but Utah is the better team, period. Jazz in six.

New Orleans vs. San Antonio: The feel-good story of the season versus Old (Cowboy) Hat. The Spurs do have the most powerful triumvirate on paper since Caesar, Crassus and Pompey -- okay, Cream kicked a bunch of ass, too -- but the Hornets proved beyond a shadow of my doubt that they are quite the legitimate title contender. For one more series at least, the Ben Gay savvy of role players such as Kurt Thomas, Bruce Bowen and Robert Horry prove to be the edge. Spurs in six.

Friday, May 2, 2008

What's that smell?

It's not English Leather.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

приветствия, камрады!

Happy May Day, fellow pinkos. I was planning on filling the proletariat afternoon with glorious work, tilling the gardens of the collective after this interminably long parade finished up sometime after the next five-year plan, but a goddamn SAM ran over my goddamn foot.