Posts Tagged ‘humor’

DEATH BY PIN PRICKS, Water Lilies & Boiling Water

October 12, 2017

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There must be a new approach to public policy that makes “Earth First.”

“Property,” “economy,” and “jobs” must serve “Earth First.” The planning frame should be at least 100 years, possibly 1,000, NOT 25. Environmental change is occurring so fast that small decisions made locally avalanche regionally (e.g. downstream pollution), or even globally (e.g. ozone layer destruction).

The Economic Growth discussion is always the same: “highest and best value” (a misnomer if ever there was one – profits trump survival – pun intended). Fat City is over, although many are still trying to milk it for the last bit of cream; we call these asshats “Vulture Capitalists,” they feed off the dead and wounded). We must do more with less, and the rich must share or move out. We don’t need more deadhead users and freeloaders.

We must develop a mutually supportive community again. The business of government is the people’s business; developers step to the rear. Legislators must renounce corporate campaign contributions as contrary to the public good. We must CONTROL land and resource value to discourage speculation, and eliminate or lessen the wide market swings due to nerves or manipulation. We must impose firm, honest value on land and resources and discourage speculative over-inflation – speculation is not bad per se, but it is one of the easiest activities to exaggerate and corrupt. We need a National Land Use Comprehensive Plan.

Unlimited Growth is the ethos of a cancer cell, observes David Suzuki, noted biologist. Because one cannot personally conceive of an alternative to growth does not mean that one does not exist. Sustainability is NOT a myth – it is an under-represented, and too-often wrongfully rejected younger child; the one bearing truth to co-dependent addicted parents in deep denial over their multi-generational destruction of the natural environment. Three well-known parables apply:

  1. Chinese parable of death by 1,000 pin pricks.  Stick a mouse one to 500 times and it can still heal itself unassisted.  Between 500-750 sticks, the mouse needs outside help in order to survive. Between 750 and the 1,000th stick, death is certain, regardless of any treatment, or intervention.
  2. A lily pad grows exponentially, doubling in size every day.  It takes a while for it to cover half the pond, but on the very next day, the entire pond is covered completely, and everything below the lily pad suffocates and dies.
  3. Parable of the frog in boiling water.  Put a frog in boiling water and it hops right out.  Put the frog in cold water and slowly heat it to boiling and the frog will adjust until it boils to death.

One more stick with the pin?  Deal with it later?  Turn up the heat?

Earth’s Life Support Systems Failing. The world has failed to slow the accelerating extinction crisis despite years of international effort. It is hard to imagine a more important priority. The biodiversity of life on Earth comprises the ecosystems that provide climate regulation, food,fiber, clean water and air. Like a Dooms Day asteroid, human over-population, pollution, logging, over-exploitation, consumption, land use changes and engineering projects have produced the planet’s sixth great extinction of species. Freshwater Species that live in lakes and rivers are vanishing four to six times faster than anywhere else. “There is clear and growing scientific evidence that we are on the verge of a major freshwater biodiversity crisis.”

We are in a life-threatening situation and must make fundamental and absolute changes without delay. We cannot give “just a bit more” to Trump and his greedy followers. Spoiled children need discipline in order to live wholesome, productive lives. Developers, energy barons, other planet-killers and we, must settle for less and work together to plan and build a healthy sustainable community. We require teamwork to endure what is coming. We have no luxury to indulge selfish, ignorant behaviors. What are our politicians doing that makes any positive difference? Let us ask them. Demand Party Platforms that respond to reality, justice, science and full democracy. Demand to be treated like adults.

How to Help, Where to find the Action

Get Corporations out of Government: movetoamend.org

Progressive ACTION: moveon.org

Biodiversity ACTION: biologicaldiversity.org

Be Sure to VOTE, take a new registered progressive voter to the polls with you.

ciceroontreasonyel

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2013 in review

December 31, 2013

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,400 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

EUGENE ON THE GREYHOUND

February 11, 2013

Hacienda

Excerpt, COMMON LIVES, an unpublished novel.

There was a clean Latino man in the seat beside Eugene on the Greyhound bus, who alternately dozed, or read from Antoine Saint Exupéry’s Wind, Sand and Stars.  His clothes were clean: dark new Levis and a good blue cotton denim shirt.  He also had a clean white straw cowboy hat with a sedate blue and white band.  Tucked under his elbow, between his body and the window wall of the bus was a new black leather jacket – not the kind bikers wore, but a skirted coat a gentleman might wear to take a lady out.  He also had a small brown paper bag with food for the trip – sausage and cheese, baguette of French bread, small condiments, crackers, fruits and vegetables in sealed plastic sacks.

Eugene met him when their bus driver narrowly avoided collision with a highballing semi-trailer headed north in a hurry.  Eugene banged into his seatmate as the bus made a wild swing onto and off the shoulder of the road.

“Sorry!” Eugene yelped, more frightened than he wanted to be.

“No problem!” the man said, clinging to the seat in front of them with one strong brown hand.  Saint-Exupéry was clutched securely in the other.

“Some drivers,” Eugene said as their driver regained control.

“Guess he has to make some time.”

“Eugene Formsby,” Eugene introduced himself on impulse, holding out his hand.

“Armand Garcia,” Armand said, shaking Eugene’s hand.

“Headed for Portland?” Eugene asked.  Armand’s hand was hard as horn.

“Wilsonville,” Armand replied.  “I follow the crops.”

“You’re a migrant worker?” Eugene asked in disbelief.  Armand fit none of the stereotypes.  He was clean and neat.  He wasn’t traveling in a caravan of scruffy dirty brown men.  He wasn’t drunk.

“Somebody’s gotta do it,” Armand said reasonably.  He smiled.  He had even white teeth, obviously well-cared-for beneficiaries of good professional dental attention.  “It’s a good livin’, if you don’t blow it all on booze and women.  A lotta the guys do that: make a little money and piss it all away.  They’re stupid.  Sure, it’s a little bit of money here, but it’s a lot where I come from.  I send my money home.  I got a wife and kids in Mexico.”

“Did I see you reading Saint Exupéry?” Eugene asked, fascinated.  He was meeting an industrious Mexican migrant farm worker – a clean one with a sense of responsibility.  The world was truly a marvelous place.

“Yes,” Armand said promptly.  “Would you like to hear a passage?”

“Well…?”

And suddenly,” Armand read, “I had a vision of the face of destiny.  Old bureaucrat, my comrade, it is not you who are to blame.  No one ever helped you to escape.  You, like a termite, built your peace by locking up with cement every chink and cranny through which light might pierce.  You rolled yourself up into a ball in your genteel security, in routine, in the stifling conversations of provincial life, raising a modest rampart against the winds and the tides and the stars.  You have chosen not to be perturbed by great problems, having trouble enough to forget your own fate as a man.  You are not the dweller upon an errant planet, and do not ask yourself questions to which there are no answers.  You are a petty bourgeois to Toulouse.  Nobody grasped you by the shoulder while there was still time.  Now the clay from which you were shaped has hardened, and naught in you will ever awaken the sleeping musician, the poet, the astronomer that possibly inhabited you in the beginning.’

“Good stuff, ain’t it?” Armand asked, smiling.

“It’s uncanny,” Eugene replied, nonplused.  Did someone send you here to read that to me?  He wondered, imagining all sorts of divine interventions and messages from Beyond.

“I’m tryin’ to improve my mind,” Armand said amiably.  “I don’t always wanna be pickin’ crops.  That’s stupid.  Gonna kill my back one day and then I won’t be able to do it anymore.  I’m thinkin’ of studyin’ book-keepin’.  What do you think?”

“Well, book-keeping is a reliable occupation,” Eugene said seriously, dismayed that the reader of Saint Exupéry was going to intentionally crash land in the desert.

“I was thinkin’ more along the line of tax preparation, ya’ know?”

“Uh-ha,” Eugene replied, nodding. 

“You’ve got a family?” Armand asked politely.

“No.”

“You should have a wife and children,” Armand said reasonably.  “They make your life mean something.  A lot of those guys I work with, they don’t know that.  They don’t work for the family.  They come up here and get drunk and wild and land in jail, or get run outta the country by the INS.  Stupid sonsabitches.”

“INS,” Eugene said, “that’s Immigration Naturalization Service?”

“That’s them.  They’re not too bad if you don’t get stupid.”

“You get hassled?”

“Sometimes, but I travel by bus and keep pretty much to myself.  Some of those other guys all chip in, ya’ know?  Buy an old junker car.  They get a little drunked up and ride along about a hundred miles an hour and get busted by a local cop.  Man, that’s stupid!  Local cops can be real mean.”

“I didn’t know migrant workers came all the way up to Oregon.”

“Sure, all the time.  We follow the crop right up into Canada.  We’re chasing the harvests, don’t ya’ know?”

“Well, yeah, sure, I know that.  That’s what migrants do.”  Eugene felt stupid.

Sometime around noon, the bus broke down.

“I always bite off a hard chunk,” Armand said as they stood by the side of the road.  The bus was disabled, its rear hatch open, smoky steam clouding up into the cool Oregon air in thin wet tendrils.  Passengers stood straggled along the roadway, or seated on their luggage, which had been removed in preparation for a relief bus, which was expected “momentarily” for the past two hours and twenty-three minutes.  Passing motorists speeding by on their way north glanced curiously at the stranded bus riders.  No highway patrolman appeared.  The driver smoked cigarettes, paced and scowled, stopping periodically to deal with impatient frustrated passengers.

“A hard chunk?” Eugene asked disinterestedly, holding Armand’s dog-eared Saint-Exupéry, which he’d asked to see.  He longed for the relief bus.  He leaned into its vision, hoping that it would soon put an end to his seemingly endless return to Portland.  Perhaps the fates were trying to tell him something – like, maybe, you’re a loser, go no farther.

“If it’s hard to chew,” Armand continued, “I try to spit it out.  If it don’t spit out, I have to tough my way through.  Life is like that; you don’t get to spit the damn thing out, until you croak.”

Reassuring, Eugene thought.

“I been thinkin’ lately on how man is an animal,” Armand said seriously.  “Unlike the other animals, he’s the only one who gets to remember much of anythin’ – includin’ hates and discontents – and the only one who knows he’s gonna die.  Pretty depressin’.  It’s also the human condition which everybody reads about – which some people think died out with those Frenchmen, sittin’ in Paris cafes, stickin’ knives in their hands to make a point durin’ the Nazi occupation; or walkin’ the beaches in self-exile in plague-ridden Morocco.  Camus had it bad.  Malraux and Sartre, all those thoughtful Frenchmen.  All life’s absurd.  It’s the human condition.  Man’s fate.  It all comes home.”

Eugene stared at Armand.

“Hey, who are those guys?” Armand asked with sudden concern.

Eugene looked around.  There were about a dozen, furtive men trying to slip into the small crowd of stranded bus riders.  The men fit Eugene’s stereotype: dirty, rough-looking Latino laborers, wearing faded jeans, straw hats, black mustaches, flannel shirts and heavy, thick-soled shoes.

“Shit,” Armand said furiously.  “Fuckin’ wetbacks ruin it for everybody!  Stupid motherfuckers!”

“What are they doing here?” Eugene asked nervously.

“I don’t know,” Armand replied angrily.  “Catchin’ the bus, I guess!  The stupid mother fuckers are gettin’ tickets from the mother fuckin’ driver!”

Sure enough, Eugene saw the newcomers line up, clutching their money in grimed hands, pressing it on the surly Greyhound bus representative in his surly-gray bus driver’s suit.  As he watched, a trio of official white sedans pulled off onto the shoulder of the road behind the bus.  A second trio of sedans and a large white van pulled up in front.

The next few moments were bedlam.

The laborers began running in all directions.  To Eugene’s horror, Armand went with them.  Men in dark blue bulletproof vests and matching ball caps ran past Eugene in hot pursuit.  The pursuers wore badges and the large letters INS were stenciled across their backs.  They were armed with batons and carried side arms at their belts.  Within minutes, the laborers returned, singly and in pairs, their hands handcuffed behind them, escorted by officers into the back of the white van.  Eugene saw Armand among the last herded up to captivity.  Armand did not see him.  The van was sealed, the officers returned to their vehicles, got in and drove away, leaving a gaping busload of passengers still stranded at the side of the road.

The surly Greyhound bus driver looked furtively at all the ticket money he’d just collected and pocketed it.  He glanced nervously at the passengers and smiled at a nearby older woman, who looked at him disapprovingly, thinking his unctuous smile the most terrible anomaly thus far in a terrible trip.

My God! Eugene thought. Armand is a wetback!  A goddamned literate wetback! How do I meet these guys?  Why do I meet these guys? What the hell?

The relief bus arrived almost immediately thereafter and Eugene climbed aboard gratefully, still carrying Armand’s copy of Saint-Exupéry.  He sat down with the book in his lap.  Armand would stay on his mind for a long time, maybe for life; he had only touched the surface.   He wished him well, commending him to his Catholic or Indian gods, or Sir Isaac Newton, perhaps.  Impossibly, he hoped he would meet him again.  He looked down at Saint-Exupéry and opened it to the part Armand had marked.  He read:

“No one ever helped you to escape.  You, like a termite, built your peace by locking up with cement every chink and cranny through which light might pierce.  You rolled yourself up into a ball in your genteel security, in routine, in the stifling conversations of provincial life, raising a modest rampart against the winds and the tides and the stars.  You have chosen not to be perturbed by great problems, having trouble enough to forget your own fate as a man.” 

Eugene turned to the first page and began to read.

UNITED FARM WORKERS :

To provide farm workers and other working people with the inspiration and tools to share in society’s bounty

http://www.ufw.org/

Friend of the Poor

DISORDER and FACT reprise

November 17, 2012

Fantasy Eruption

MEDITATIONS ON DISORDER and FACT:

Persistent and determined belief in fiction over fact is a clear sign of an emotional disorder. – See also: religion, supply side economics, 7/17/05

Poseidon: “Without gods, man is nothing.”  Odysseus: “I was only one man in the world – nothing more and nothing less.”

GIBBONISMS: Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

Of interest: “The Gregorian chants of the Christian church preserve the vocal and instrumental music of the theater in an attempt to imitate the melody of the Roman school, which was meant to soothe the distress, confirm the faith, mitigate the fierceness, and dispel the dark enthusiasm of the vulgar. ”

“It is not surprising that superstition should act most powerfully on the fears of her votaries, since the human fancy can paint with more energy the misery than the bliss of a future life.”

“Among the Arabian philosophers, Averroes has been accused of despising the religion of the Jews, the Christians, and the Mahometans.  Each of these sects would agree that in two instances out of three his contempt was reasonable.”

“…many a sober Christian would rather admit that a wafer is God, than that God is a cruel and capricious tyrant.”

“…such is the progress of credulity that miracles, most doubtful on the spot and at the moment, will be received with implicit faith at a convenient distance of time and space.”

“…the favor of the people is less permanent than the resentment of the priest…”

Ambition is a weed of quick and early vegetation in the vineyard of Christ.”

“The calculation of their number [pilgrims to Rome] could not be easy or accurate; and they probably have been magnified by a dexterous clergy, well apprised of the contagion of example…”

“The dominion of priests is most odious to a liberal spirit.”

“…all that is human must retrograde if it do not advance…”

OTHER PEOPLE SAY:

A guru will tell you just enough, but not everything, to lead you on.  A bad guru wants you to suppress your doubts and serve him, or you will be set aside, dropped from favor, lose the “love.”  A good guru tells you to serve a cause, not him, or yourself, and never demands belief.

“In the case of gods, death is only a matter of prejudice.” Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra.

“The history of Christianity is rife with violence resulting from an organized central authority wishing to force its minions to adhere to a rigid doctrine of belief…Even more ironic is the fact that the Church’s attacks on fellow believers have been the worst events in the history of religious persecution.” – Lost Treasure of the Knights Templar, Steven Sora.

“It is evident that use of manipulative methods and blackmail can be a very effective means of controlling members.  In certain organizations and movements secrecy and control are very important.” – ibid, Sora.

In order to control the mind, one must control the body.  That is the primary reason religions proscribe sex and cleanliness.

INTERESTING STRAY FACTS:

St. Morris was the African Christian who inspired the code of chivalry: Serve the king, but answer only to god.

Quid pro quo – one for another, tit for tat. (Only goes so far if chopping off fingers, say).

One light year is six trillion miles!

Humans are by biology and temperament, the dancing ape.  Our closest relatives, Chimpanzees, can’t dance.  Anyone or anything that stops, or tries to control the dance is anti-human.

SO, I THINK, IT’S FUNNY:

She looks like an old couch somebody threw out of a trailer.

“I’m really intrigued about what I’ve found out about this woman’s skull!” – bright cheerful English archeologist, History Channel, Meet the Ancestors, “The Tomb that Time Forgot.”  “Time” forgot no less.

Go ahead, make my dinner.

“How dumb can you be and still be useful?” – scientific question applied to robotics.

“If enough people say, ‘My god, stop talking,’ you become a good listener.” – Gilbert Gottfried, Becker.

“These days, doctors can keep people alive way past their usefulness.” – Hugh Neutron, Jimmy Neutron.

“Church Potluck: What a Friend We Have in Cheese Puffs!” – church sign, Simpsons.

“No one gives a [crap] about labor if they can get a delicious sandwich.” – Squidward, Sponge Bob.

Barbarians don’t have an education, so they go for the nearest thrill.” – History Channel professor.

END ON THE UPBEAT:

“One cuts it and the other gets first choice.” – How brothers should share pie, Baxter Black, PBS.

PRETTY IMPORTANT NEWS (earlier views, but obviously still true):

Published on Monday, July 27, 2009 by The Guardian/UK

World Will Warm Faster Than Predicted in Next Five Years, Study Warns.  New estimate based on the forthcoming upturn in solar activity and El Nino southern oscillation cycles is expected to silence global warming skeptics, by Duncan Clark.

The world faces a new period of record-breaking temperatures as the sun’s activity increases, leading the planet to heat up significantly faster than scientists had predicted over the next five years, according to a new study.

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/07/27-9

Published on Monday, July 27, 2009 by The Telegraph/UK

Climate Change to Force 75 Million Pacific Islanders From Their Homes.  More than 75 million people living on Pacific islands will have to relocate by 2050 because of the effects of climate change, Oxfam has warned, by Bonnie Malkin in Sydney.

A report by the charity said Pacific Islanders were already feeling the effects of global warming, including food and water shortages, rising cases of malaria and more frequent flooding and storms. Some had already been forced from their homes and the number of displaced people was rising, it warned.

Published on Monday, July 27, 2009 by CommonDreams.org

Profiling CEOs and Their Sociopathic Paychecks, by Thomm Hartmann.  The Wall Street Journal reported last week that “Executives” and other highly compensated employees received nearly $2.1 trillion of the $6.4 trillion in total US pay in 2007, the latest figures available.”

One of the questions often asked when the subject of CEO pay comes up is, “What could a person such as William McGuire or Lee Raymond (the former CEOs of UnitedHealth and ExxonMobil, respectively) possibly do to justify a $1.7 billion paycheck or a $400 million retirement bonus?”

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/07/27

ODD SHOTS and IDLE PENSEES Master Link Index

July 16, 2012
Gene Kelley danced past Joe's in "Singing in the Rain." Gene Kelley danced past Joe’s in “Singing in the Rain.”

OCCASIONAL INSTALLMENTS of THISSES and THATS collected over the years: HUMOR, bits of philosophy, short-short rants, CURIOSITIES.

ODD SHOTS and IDLE PENSEES Master Link Index:
#1 – Odd Shots and Idle Pensees Nr. 1
#2 – This Man Needs a Chicken Suit!
#3 – Mother’s Advice
#4 – Say What?
#5 – Old Black Magic
#6 – The Lesser Known Earl Poppins
#7 – Tell the Truth and Run
#8 – Notorious Sex Scandal
#9 – Basic Human Behavior
#10 – Hacking Jack’s

Magic Mountains - Resurrection Machines

Magic Mountains – Poster (cards, postage, magnets) available at both the JLegry Gallery (prints, posters, cards) and Magic Mountains – Keepsake Box
at John Legry’s Store (gift boxes, t-shirts, mugs).

ODD SHOTS and IDLE PENSEES Sampler:

Ancient Greeks: To sin = “to miss the mark” – can be high or low. Sin is not living up to, or being who you are.

Dead, uncorrupted saints make good listeners.

548 Primrose Lane – Robocop’s home address before all the bad stuff went down.

“The more you drive, the less intelligent you are.” – Mechanic, Repo Man.

Note: Feeling loss of identity? Eager to believe in something, anything? You’re prime fodder for cults!

Madison 5-1190: Perry Mason’s phone number.

Warsaw can no more be Tartar than Venice can be Teutonic.  The kings lose their labor at this, and their honour.  Sooner or later, the submerged country floats to the surface and reappears.  Greece again becomes Greece, Italy again becomes Italy.  The protest of the right against the fact, persists forever.  The robbery of a people never becomes prescriptive.  These lofty swindles have no future.  You cannot pick the mark out of a nation as you can out of a handkerchief.”  – Victor Hugo, Les Miserables.

Mom’s Advice:  “Use Clorox to get rid of the DNA evidence.  Burn the barn.” – Some CSI-type crime show.

G.W. Bush’s recent efforts to rewrite his history remind me of Ramses the Great (pharaoh of the biblical exodus, if you believe).  He is called “great” because he managed to live longer than any other pharaoh and used the time to build more monuments to himself than all his predecessors and successors combined.  He had a factory that just turned out busts of his head so that he could knock the heads off other pharaohs’ statues and put his in their place.  He advertised himself shamelessly: painting and carving the story of the Battle of Kadesh on every wall and pillar in sight.  Kadesh was not even a draw and Rameses quickly signed a peace treaty with the victorious Hittite King, and went back to Egypt.  He nearly got himself killed and almost lost his army due to his egotistical rash actions as an inexperienced military leader, but he declared victory from near defeat, and covered up the fact that he came precious close to losing the farm – not just for himself, but for the whole kingdom of Egypt.  And that’s why G.W. Bush’s recent rewrite of his history reminds me of Ramses the Great, pharaoh of the biblical exodus, if you believe.  G.W. became president of the United States by the skin of his teeth and the lies on his lips: the same way Ramses II became “Great.”  – 11/04.

“On a farm with no watch dog, the fox rules the roost.” – Ancient Sumerian proverb.

First rule about dealing with the Devil: Don’t.

Law of Probable Dispersal: “Whatever hits the fan will not be evenly distributed.”

“Separateness is a useful illusion.”  – The Big Kahuna.

Separateness is a youthful illusion.  Jl.

“God, the original Tony Soprano.” – church sign, Simpsons.

So, kick back, here are MORE ACTUAL Analogies and Metaphors Found in High School Essays:

  • The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when you fry them in hot grease.
  • The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

“Even if you’re a born loser, you can and should be holy.”– Mother Angelica, cable TV nun

“Only fools and priests do squander life with thoughts of death.” — The Green Knight (Sean Connery), Sword of the Valiant.

Jimmy Neutron: “I didn’t know my candy would be that popular.” Candy Store Guy: “That’s what the man said who invented underwear.”

“I don’t want to go to prison; orange makes me look hippy!” Carl Wheezer, Jimmy Neutron.

“You are a smudge on history’s ledger, but you are my brother.” Agamemnon (Rufus Sewell) to Menelaus, Helen of Troy.

“The problem with the world is there’s too many stupid people, and nobody to eat them!” Carlos Mencia.

“I’ve heard it said that out of men, bishops are made!” – Cervantes, Man of Glass.

“This just isn’t the same cold, oppressive place I built with the sweat and toil of others.” Evil Emperor Zurg, Buzz Lightyear.

“I’m always up for a bit of adventure, Valerie, but you’re getting rather slapdash, aren’t you?” Art instructor to student, Midsommer Murders.

“Self-improvement is best handled by people who live in big cities.” Marge Simpson, Simpsons.

Visit the Galleries:

Fine Art: JLegry Gallery http://www.zazzle.com/jlegry

Humor, Sci-Fi, Fantasy: FatLemon Gallery http://www.zazzle.com/FatLemon

VINTAGE and COLLECTIBLES, including POLITICAL MEMORABILIA: TheAttic Gallery http://www.zazzle.com/TheAttic

A Choice, Not an Echo

EVOLUTION SIGNS; YES, WAY

March 30, 2012
[DON’T FORGET TO CLICK PIX FOR MORE ]
OH, SPONGEBOB!

Jellyfish are eating all [sic] the other marine life, destroying human fishing resources, and creating dead spots around the world, which are growing in alarming number and speed. Irish experience doesn’t bode well for American Pacific Coast salmon. As this author says, Damn.
OH, SPONGEBOB!

DE-VOLUTION:

Some examples of why the human race has probably evolved as far as possible.  These are actual instruction labels on consumer goods:

On Sears hairdryer:  Do not use while sleeping.

On a bag of Fritos:  You could be a winner! No purchase necessary. Details inside.

On a bar of Dial soap:  Directions: Use like regular soap.

On some Swanson frozen dinners:  Serving suggestion: Defrost.

On a hotel provided shower cap in a box:  Fits one head.

On Tesco’s Tiramisu dessert (printed on bottom of the box):  Do not turn upside down.

On Marks & Spencer Bread Pudding:  Product will be hot after heating.

On packaging for a Rowenta iron:  Do not iron clothes on body.

On Boot’s Children’s cough medicine:  Do not drive car or operate machinery.  (We could reduce construction accidents if we kept 5 year olds off fork lifts.)

On Nytol sleep aid:  Warning: May cause drowsiness.

On a Korean kitchen knife:  Warning: Keep out of children.

On a string of Chinese-made Christmas lights:  For indoor or outdoor use only.

On a Japanese food processor:  Not to be used for the other use.

On Sainsbury’s peanuts:  Warning: Contains nuts.

On an American Airlines packet of nuts:  Instructions: Open packet, eat nuts.

On a Swedish chainsaw:  Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands or genitals.

On a child’s Superman costume:  Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly.

STRAINED EVOLUTION:

Some questions I should have asked about King Kong.

1.      Why did the natives build a door so big that Kong could walk right through it?

2.      Why did the natives bother with the wall at all since Kong lived high on a cliff in a cave, and spent his last few moments scaling the Empire State Building?  He could hop that wall in a beat.

3.      Fay Ray was obviously not the first maiden tied to the posts.  The post assembly was a regular fixture – little stone step-up, solid uprights (didn’t tip over when Kong pulled her off the ropes; didn’t pull her arms out of the sockets, either; how did that go down?) – and the natives were goofing up one of their own maidens before they spotted Fay.  Ergo, what did Kong do with all the previous sacrifices?  This was a Giant Gorilla Feeding Station from Eddie Bauer? Did he eat them and not eat Fay because she was a  blonde?  Pheromones?  Not fun.

4.      That wall wouldn’t keep pterodactyls out either.  Those dudes would swoop down and snatch a native snack every so often, don’t you think?

5.     What the heck happened to all of the other giant gorillas? Where did they go? Where were Kong’s mom and dad? In Son of Kong, we of course discover that Kong had a son, but we never see Mrs. Kong. Mrs. Kong is never even mentioned. The gang goes, “Hey, there’s a baby Kong!” And they are off like the Scooby Gang, chasing Mr. Jensen the asocial gardener from the old condemned Henshaw Mansion.

6.      At the end, Robert Armstrong stares at Kong’s gigantic corpse and says, “’Twas Beauty killed the beast.”  Why didn’t someone point out that he was the s.o.b. who captured Kong and brought him back to ravage New York City?  Oh sure, in the sequel, Armstrong got sued for all the damages and cleanup, but he never did any jail time for bringing to town a huge rampaging ape that killed a lot of people .  Go figure.  He must have been working for Goldman Sachs.

7.    Why did they remake it with JACK BLACK? Why?

So, that’s what I should have asked about King Kong.

Eve of Extinction

EVER SINCE TIME BEGAN:

Whenever your kids are out of control, you can take comfort from the thought that even God‘s omnipotence did not extend to God’s kids. After creating heaven and earth, God created Adam and Eve.

And the first thing he said was: “Don’t.”

“Don’t what?” Adam replied.

“Don’t eat the forbidden fruit,” God said.

“Forbidden fruit? We got forbidden fruit? Hey, Eve…we got forbidden fruit!”

“No way!”

“Yes way!”

“Don’t eat that fruit!” said God.

“Why?”

“Because I am your Father and I said so!” said God (wondering why he hadn’t stopped after making the elephants).  A few minutes later God saw his kids having an apple break and was angry.

“Didn’t I tell you not to eat that fruit?” God asked.

“Uh huh,” Adam and Eve replied.

“Then why did you do it?”

“I dunno” Eve answered.

“She started it!” Adam said.

“Did not!”

“Did too!”

“DID NOT!”

Having had it with the two of them, God’s punishment was that Adam and Eve should have children of their own.  Thus the pattern was set and it has never changed.  If God had trouble handling children, what makes you think it would be a piece of cake for you?

Advice for the day:

If you have a lot of tension and you get a headache, do what it says on the aspirin bottle: Take two and keep away from children.

INDIVIDUAL SELF-ESTEEM:

“If I knock him out, his’ory wi’ be made!” — Evander Holyfield, boxer, television interview.

“I’m a people person.  I love people!” — Ibid, same interview, one minute later.

GOD RESTED reprise

July 6, 2011

Islands w/ apple.

AND GOD CREATED THE UNIVERSE (Humor):

And God created the universe in the wink of an eye.  And the wink was a billion billion years long, and a trillion, trillion years wide.  When it was done, everybody wondered what He had done, for it was all new and different, and nobody knew where anything was, and nobody knew what to make of it.

Everybody in those days was the angels, archangels, seraphim and cherubim, and they only knew what they knew, which wasn’t much, but mostly concerned with telling God how great He was, and God was getting to the point where He didn’t know if what they said counted for very much.  He knew what it would be before they said it, because that’s just the way they were, and He should know because He made them that way.  Which was “Catch 22” because how do you get an unbiased review from palace courtiers and the pep squad?

No brainer, god had to create somebody absolutely ignorant about how he or she got here.  It would behoove everybody already present to become invisible to maintain the mystery.  This new somebody would receive skills and abilities sufficient to pose ultimate questions, and to invent answers to them.  They were to be guided by various natural clues and signposts, wandering know-it-alls, and ambiguous events anonymously reported.  The new somebodies would arrive naked in the world, and cobble together reasons and whys from the smorgasbord laid before them, with an occasional stick up the ass to keep them moving. (more…)

HACKING JACK’S

June 13, 2011

[ ODD SHOTS and IDLE PENSEES Nr. 10!! (New old stuff)]

“Hacking Jack’s Fine Cigars” Sign, Futurama.

“I prefer the hands-on touch you can only get with hired goons.” Mr. Burns, Simpsons.

“God, give me strength to be what I want to be, and forgive me for being what I am.” Antonio Banderas, Desperado.

Q: What’s it like in your little dream world? A: A little humid. One nanobot to another, Jimmy Neutron.

“There’s nothing like a little bit of truth to sell a big lie.” Barnaby, MidSommer Murders.

Excessive greed precedes the collapse of civilization. Archeology hypothesis (Mayan/Roman, etc.).

No nation in history has ever escaped the consequences of its own hubris.

“Thank god we live in a country so hysterical over crime we can try a ten-year old boy as an adult.” Mr. Burns, Simpsons.

If you want fantasy, go to the movies, a singles bar, or church.

“Take Memoprove and forget memory problems!” T.V. ad. Blanks your mind?

“I don’t have time for this! I’ve got 75 shortcakes to strawberry!” Chef, Simpsons.

“Dead man’s nothing but a corpse. Nobody cares who he is now.” Sgt. Zack, Gene Evans, The Steel Helmet.

“Men fear death as children fear the dark.” Sir Francis Bacon.

“Those who seek justice, fall prey to it.” Character, The Reckoning. Tell George Bush.

“With the 14th moon, there’s always tomorrow and hope.” Millennium Actress.

Hope never filled a soup bowl.

Sign of overpopulation: everyone walking about in headphones to find “a bit of peace,” “relief,” and “escape.” (more…)

ODD SHOTS and IDLE PENSEES #2 reprise

June 5, 2011
Chicken Soup
Chicken Soup

BITS and SCRAPS gathered over time – reprint by request:

Madison 5-1190: Perry Mason’s phone number.

Warsaw can no more be Tartar than Venice can be Teutonic.  The kings lose their labor at this, and their honour.  Sooner or later, the submerged country floats to the surface and reappears.  Greece again becomes Greece, Italy again becomes Italy.  The protest of the right against the fact, persists forever.  The robbery of a people never becomes prescriptive.  These lofty swindles have no future.  You cannot pick the mark out of a nation as you can out of a handkerchief.”  – Victor Hugo, Les Miserables.

Q: Reporter: Is Bin Laden alive or dead? A: Donald Rumsfeld: The answer to that is yes.  – NPR, 1-03.

“It was a time like ours of large impersonal states and individuals who felt lost in them.  A time of consumption, brutality, sophistication and trying to find justification and consolation in religious cults.” – Eugen Weber, “The Hellenistic Age,” The Western Tradition.

“Given a choice between gods or magic, I will take magic and be grateful.” –Doogana the medicine man, Moses, Howard Fast.

“Every tribal god proclaims at every opportunity the glorious future in store for his worshippers.” – G. Bibby, Four thousand Years Ago.

When asked by the reporter what it was like to live in the disputed west bank, a resident replied, “You can feel it and see it in the eyes of the people, in the eyes of the children.  Oh, do you really want to know how it is to live in?  It’s shit.” PBS, 1-03.

“The appearance of the law must be upheld at all times, especially when it’s being broken.”  — Boss Tweed.

“I hate it when a promising rookie turns out to be a terrorist.”  — Buzz Lightyear.

“Do you think getting married will make you decent?  Until I got married I was decent.” – one prostitute to another, Docks of New York.

Edward Gibbon relates that the ancient philosophers thought that Christians seeking martyrdom did so because they were obstinately despairing, of stupid sensibility, or victims of superstitious frenzy.  Dismayed that they tried to coerce the state into creating their martyrship, the proconsul Antoninus Pius (later emperor) said to the Christians of Asia: “Unhappy men! Unhappy men! If you are thus weary of your lives, is it so difficult for you to find ropes and precipices?” 8/03.

Reverend:  “You would replace god with man.”  Anthropologist: “And you would replace man with twaddle.” – Peter Falk to Edward Fox, Lost World.

“You’re getting into the heart of another person’s innermost being, which is something most other websites don’t offer.” – Customer, Loveline.Com, 4/04  – Must be the Ted Bundy special.

“What good fortune for governments that the people do not think.” – Adolph Hitler.

Hands are the most sensitive sensors of the brain; they transmit more information than any other organ.  Maybe that’s why we have to hold something when we say we want to “look” at it?

“When Quanah Parker passed, it was said that his passing was not just his passing, but the passing of the past – as well.” – historian, Real West, History Channel.  – Pass the chips?

New evidence has revealed that there might be an element of truth in what I have to say.

Let’s hear it for self-righteous superstitious indignation!

“If you are dizzy and sick, reach out.  I am your railing by the torrent.  Your crutch, I am not.” – NietzscheThus Spoke Zarathustra, book one.

“That which is now called natural philosophy, embracing the whole circle of science, of which astronomy occupies the chief place, is the study of the works of God, and of the power and wisdom of God in his works, and is the true theology. As to the theology that is now studied in its place, it is the study of human opinions and of human fancies concerning God.  It is not the study of God himself in the works that he has made, but in the writings that man has made; and it is not among the least of the mischiefs that man has made; and it is not among the least of mischiefs that the Christian system has done to the world, that it has abandoned the original and beautiful system of theology, like a beautiful innocent, to distress and reproach, to make room for the hag of superstition.”  Thomas Paine, Age of Reason, p. 37

“According to Livy, the Romans conquered the world in their own defense.” – Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall, Book 1, p. 839, n77.

“Then as now the most effective labor-saving device was stealing.” – Eugen Weber, Western Tradition.

Young Martin Chuzzlewitt: “I’m going to America.”  Mr. Pinch: “Not America! Your situation isn’t that desperate!” – Chas. Dickens.

“The contemporary world of learning is made up almost altogether of mean, starved, envious, strident, stingless fools and fops, ignorant and arrogant, who swarm about their betters with a fly’s equal inclination to dung or honey.” – Carl Van Doren on Swift, 1948.

Glen Manning is not a well man, mentally or physically.” – movie scientist’s assessment of the mutated, insane, irradiated The Amazing Colossal Man.

“Oh, problems in moral philosophy always provide a few chuckles!” – little green robot, Sonic the Hedgehog.

“Oh, the places we will go!” – Doctor Seuss.

548 Primrose Lane – Robocop’s home address before all the bad stuff went down.

More HUMOR at: www.zazzle.com/FatLemon

FatLemon Productions
FatLemon Productions

OBAMA is CORPORATIST reprise

May 25, 2011
[FOR “FUNNY STUDENT QUOTES” SCROLL TO END OF POST].
“Play it again, Sam!”

TRUTH WILL OUT

So, it’s pretty clear.  Obama is not Progressive.  He’s not a moderate either, but a corporatist similar to Bill Clinton.  Obama favors corporatist policy in every significant decision.  Three recent examples illustrate the point:

A Bomber Jacket Doesn’t Cover the Blood by Norman Solomon

President Obama has taken a further plunge into the kind of war abyss that consumed predecessors named Johnson, Nixon and Bush.  READ MORE:  http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/03/29

Obama Puts Pesticide Pusher in Charge of Agricultural Trade Relations the Center for Biological Diversity

WASHINGTON- Sidestepping a stalled Senate confirmation vote, yesterday President Obama recess-appointed Islam Siddiqui to be chief agricultural negotiator in the office of the U.S. trade representative. Dr. Siddiqui’s nomination was held up in the Senate and was opposed by the Center for Biological Diversity and more than 80 other environmental, small-farm, and consumer groups. More than 90,000 concerned citizens contacted the White House and Senate to oppose the nomination. Siddiqui is a former pesticide lobbyist and is currently vice president of science and regulatory affairs at CropLife America, a biotech and pesticide trade group that lobbies to weaken environmental laws. READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/03/29-0

Obama Packs Debt Commission with Social Security Looters

 Obama has filled his new ‘debt commission’ with Wall Street insiders determined to gut Social Security.

The most generous bank bailout in history has amplified Wall Street’s considerable political influence, and the economic implications of this democratic calamity go well beyond bloated bonuses. Over the past year, the financial propaganda machine has set its sights on Social Security, launching a massive assault on one of the nation’s most important economic programs. But rather than push back against the flawed economic assumptions of the nation’s financial elite, President Barack Obama appears to be advancing their arguments, and is now poised to repeat George W. Bush’s politically perilous efforts to gut Social Security.  READ MORE: http://www.alternet.org/economy/146183/obama_packs_debt_commission_with_social_security_looters

MY TWO-BITS

Obama’s pretty much off on the wrong course.  He appears to sprinkle “public goodies” up to and including the health care insurance act, which achieve limited but not system change, while shoving our government ever more firmly into corporatist pockets.  He listens to Robert Rubin, Ben Bernowski, and Timothy Geithner, the corporate tools who crafted and executed the big rip-off that plunged our country into near-receivership for Bush Jr..  Obama is using the same old tools to craft and execute a brand new disaster.

No special foresight or vision is necessary to see the probable outcome of Obama’s already failed – before even implemented, in some cases – policies and programs.  Perhaps our asses will be held up a short while longer to get Obama safely through his presidency and out of office, before we fall on them.  His actions are, however, without future, and there is no posterity in them.  He plays for the moment, walking with increasing stiffness.  He doesn’t bend much any more and turns his whole body and not just his head.  Perhaps the candidate of change has been replaced by a corporate android, and the real Obama is locked up in the Whitehouse basement.  Perhaps.

Obama’s corporatist allegiance is more significant now because of the time in our history.  We are experiencing massive change that we cannot control, but only modify and ameliorate, if possible.  In the midst of crisis, he is throwing buckets of gasoline onto the fire.  If he capitulates to the worst corporatist thieves every time, we’re screwed blue and tattooed.  We might as well give up, but “I hope for the best,” as Jacques Cousteau once said, “although I can’t say why.”

What must be done?  Three signs are in my office: “Persevere;” taped to a nearby bookshelf;  the phrase “Eschew Surplusage,” Mark Twain’s advice for successful writing – also life as it turns out; and, “Plan your work; work your plan,” self-explanatory: choose a direction and go there.

All sorts of suck-swampwater things need immediate attention.  How should we grapple with them?  First we list them, then we figure out what to do about them.  We will call this our Progressive Agenda.  Let’s tell everybody what we’re all about.  Let’s come together on a Platform statement that really means something, then develop the legalese and workplans needed to implement it.  We must also raise a Progressive Party the likes of which cannot be stopped by the tricked voting machines of the corporatist economic elite who would be our new aristocracy.  They may be surprised to know this, but there are a lot of us who despise and will actively resist the Corporate State of America.

Our people must really galvanize, recruit and organize.  We are fighting a desperate struggle for our republic.  It has been battered, watered down, sullied and insulted, corrupted and trashed, but it is ours and we must do what we can to save it and make it whole and free again.  What is a higher long-term priority?

No short-term priority is higher than freeing our airwaves and stopping the rightwing blitz on our democratic debate.  The rightist S.O.B.s are moving faster now, spinning ever closer to violence.   This is a tricky patch for the republic and the corporatists and tea partiers.  According to the old Nazi play book, the rightists need to kill someone to stir the base to an eruption of righteous rage and revenge.  Once the magic wall is breached, more blood can and will be shed.  The Economic Elite assume they can control this mob.  They assume they can control Sarah Palin – she is stupid and probably insane, but they don’t weigh her radical religious zealotry.  This bunch of elitists is no wiser about such things than the corporatists who appointed Adolph Hitler Chancellor of Germany seventy-seven years ago.  There is an old Chinese saying: “Once every two hundred years, an irate mob shows up on the steps of the Forbidden City.”

That whole Nazi thing?  The military-industrial complex of the “Greatest Generation” brought it back home with them after the Second World War; it has been festering and spreading throughout America’s system ever since.  Robert Woodward’s book Veil about the CIA clearly shows the progression of “ends justify means” thinking.

Which brings back Obama’s unfortunate corporatism.  The corporatist agenda does not favor human survival any more than it does the rest of creation.  It is by its very nature “consuming,” and once having consumed without having sufficiently conserved or reserved, it will eat itself out of house and home, and starve to death in the wasteland.  End of species.  We’ve also changed the planet so much that the scientists are going to declare a new geological epoch; we shall pass from the Holocene to the Anthropocene, an epoch in which human activity is a major factor in changing the planet’s climate and geology.  Humanity as a terrestrial disease is about to climax like a great festering boil on the face of the earth, yet the president appoints a leading pesticide lobbyist and opponent of environmental regulation to chief agriculture negotiator in the office of the U.S. trade representative.

Not to worry, we’ve got the problem in the new Toyota fixed.  Bio-diesel too.

Climate change is accelerating.  The outlook is grim.  Oh, look who’s on the Kardashians!  Pass the Muscatel.

A “HAPPIER” NOTE:

Who says our teenagers aren’t creative?

Actual Analogies and Metaphors Found in High School Essays

  • Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had two other sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.
  • His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.
  • He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a Guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the danger of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.
  • She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.
  • She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.
  • Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.
  • He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.
  • The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated because of his wife’s infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM.
  • The little boat drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn’t.
  • McBride fell twelve stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag filled with vegetable soup.
  • From the attic came an unearthly howl.  The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you’re on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p.m. instead of 7:30.
  •  Her hair glistened in the rain like nose hair after a sneeze.
  • Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m., traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.
  • They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan’s teeth.
  • John and Mary had never met.  They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.  He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River.
  • The plan was simple, like my bother-in-law Phil.  But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.
  • He was as lame as a duck.  Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame.  Maybe from stepping on a landmine or something.

We must do something about education.  Catch ya later, j

Empire Building and Trust-Busting