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Friday, February 27, 2004

If you're like me (and for your sake, I hope you're not), and you're still undecided on the existence of an afterlife, but you have a pretty good feeling that if there is, you'll be burning in hell for all eternity, then here are some things not to say when seeing "The Passion." I like "Jesus had a mullet!"
(Blogmaster's note: I'm waiting to see "The Passion" until it comes out on IMAX 3-D...something tells me it'd be wicked cool when J.C. turns that one fish into a whole bunch o' fish. Ooh...lightning...gotta run)

More less than useful idiots. (thanks to Joel for passing this one along)

What is the world coming to when you can't trust your crack dealer?

D.H.S.--The Series? Goebbels would be proud. This is a television series being propsed that is a drama based on the Department of Homeland Security, the good folks who brought us Code Orange and the silly color-coded terra-threat chart. The show would "explore the inner workings of the Department of Homeland Security, teaming the FBI, CIA, Secret Service, and National Security Administration (NSA) together with "first responders" such as local police, fire and safety administrators." It has also received the blessing of Dubya and Tommy "Be Afraid But Act Normal" Ridge, who have both endorsed the show and contributed sound-bytes (unclear if these sound-bytes are new or just taken from newsreel).
The article also says, "It is virtually unprecedented for the White House to endorse such a fictional representation." Not exactly true. This White House has endorsed all sorts of fictional representations including claims about WMD in Iraq, claims about their tax cuts and job creation, budget deficit projections, the idea of Shrub being a "compassionate conservative," Shrub's service in the TANG, claims about their cooperation with the 9/11 panel, destructive environmental policy, and the list goes on and on and on. Yay propaganda!

On an earlier post, I discussed the Bushco suggestion that fast-food jobs may be reclassified to manufacturing jobs, that putting two all-beef patties in between a hamburger bun is somehow akin to assembling an automobile. Rep.John Dingell (D-MI) sent an incredibly sarcastic letter to Gregory Mankiw, the doofus who chairs the Council of Economic Advisers.

If you watch a lot of television, you've probably seen the bizarre new Quiznos sub commercials. This animation is where the concept originated. That website has some other funny flash animations. According to the site, "If Destiny's Child were kittens from Northern England, this is what they would sound like." If you enjoy that, then here are some more cute kittens stomping to eastern European techno. Then this last animation has some adult content that might not be suitable for younger viewers (just some, okay a lot of, dirty language, but probably not the sort of thing you want blaring from your desk at work).

Thursday, February 26, 2004

Creed Update: Okay, it's not so much an update as it is just some photographic evidence to document Scott "The Passion of the Creed" Stapp's growing likeness to the singer from My Sacrifice, the Creed tribute band. First, we have a mugshot of Stapp from July 2002. He was so cool back then that he went topless for his mugshot. He wanted to strike the Jesus-Christ-pose, but the cops wouldn't let him. And here is a screenshot from Stapp's appearance on the Craig Kilborn show where he's looking all puffy. Compare that picture to this one of the singer from the tribute band.

O.C. update: Nathalie was out of town the last couple of nights, and so I'd been taping some shows for her. Last night, one of the shows was The O.C. Blahbbity blah blah, stuff happens for the entirety of the show, I didn't really pay attention because I was busy making the Mr.Tibbs picture page. But I did watch the previews for next week's episode.
First, Seth is already flip-flopping on his decision from two episodes ago to choose one girl over another. Next week's show has him telling girl #1, the one who he's always pined for, that he can't let girl #2 leave for Pittsburgh, and we see Seth running through the airport to catch girl #2 before she catches her plane. I can sort of understand this because nobody should let anybody move to Pittsburgh. The other main teaser for next week's episode is the lead character what's-his-face, Ryan, getting punched-out by some other dude (the dude who played claire's druggie boyfriend on "Six Feet Under" and also had a small part in Season 1 of "24"). Other dude is engaged to Ryan's ex-girlfriend who's from that scary place Chino, and last night's episode ended with Ryan mackin' on the ex-girlfriend.

My point here, and there's always a point, is that again, this is the first season of the show, and the plotlines are already redundant and repetitive. Ryan was punched out once before by the boyfriend of a girl he was mackin' on, and Seth has already done the flip-flop with the overly cheesy and dramatic scene--and you can't get much more cheezy dramatic than the airport-running-to-catch-someone-you-love scene. But maybe that's just how crazy life is when you live in The O.C.

Here is a fun little game that is good for a few minutes of mindless entertainment. My best score on part 1 is 1372.4

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Mr.Tibbs asked that I create a webpage for him so that everyone can see what a smooth operator he is. He also wanted me to add that he is also available for any acting or modeling jobs. I'd have to second that one. He really doesn't pull his weight around here.

Up is down! Down is up!
"It is not that President Bush has failed. His ratings are tanking because he has succeeded too well." Or so says Dick Morris in today's copy of The Hill. Yes, it is his incredible success that has him plunging in the polls. He's just so great, that we can't stand it anymore. Really. We can't stand it anymore. I assume then that FDR's four terms were the consequence of being a huge failure? Hmm.
Morris also adds this bit of insight, "The decreased urgency of [homeland security and anti-terror positions] undermine his campaign. When America was on orange alert in December and early January, Bush was in the high 50s. Now that we are back to normal, he’s in the high 40s." I actually have to agree. When the Bushies try to put the fear in everyone with orange alerts and the spectre of chemical attacks, then people want to believe that their pResident* will protect them. Odds are fairly good that we'll have another orange alert in time for the November elections. Probably right after they thaw Osama out of the ice bin where he's being kept until the right time.

So just remember. To succeed in life, you must first fail. And if people don't like you, it's only because you're so successful. And if you still can't figure it out, scare the bejeezus out of everyone until they break.

And if you're familiar with the Plame case and Bob Novak's involvement, read here to see just how vile this piece of crap masquerading as a human is.

As you may have noticed under the Sausage Links, my Ground Round webpage is back up and running. Huzzah. Reading through the entries for the first couple of weeks, I'm reminded of just how incredibly ridiculous that job was. Case in point, here's this passage from 6/25/02:
    "Tuesday, it was so slow that we got nailed for standing around, not looking busy. So we were given rags and told to wipe down all the chairs, and the table legs, and all of the drink menus. "Why the drink menus?" you ask? Because customers flip through them with their nasty, barbecue, sour cream, and salsa covered fingers. Now would you go to a friend's home for dinner, pick up a book, flip through it, leaving barbecue residue all over the place? Of course not. Would you let your children make a complete and total mess? Never. But at the GR, it's okay, because suckers like me are there to clean up afterward. Good times."

Green polar bears are the greatest.

And do you think you can meet the challenge of Trump or Monkey?

"Is Carey Latest to Turn to Kabbalah?" reads the headline on the MSNBC "Scoop" webpage today. Sources say that Mariah Carey has been seen wearing one of those red bracelets that Madonna and Britney Spears have also been sporting lately. The bracelet is supposed to "absorb negative energy." At this point, you can insert your own snarky joke about the Mariah Carey movie "Glitter" and the absorption of negative energy. Go on, give it a try....
As with most major life decisions, when I'm in the market for a new religion (and when am I *not*???), I look to the stars for direction. Stars like Madonna and Britney Spears. Those two seem to have made some good choices in the past. If you're like me and want to know more about this hip, hip, hip religion, then be sure to visit their chic website.

If you are a Pisces, then your horoscope from The Onion for this week says, "Replacing you with a machine would have been overkill. Your functions are being handled by a hideous piece of public art."

Happy Birthday to my brother Daniel who is celebrating his 24th birthday in beautiful post-communist Poland.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Last item on politics for the day.
I'll see about straying away from politics in the next couple of days. It's just that with Creed on hiatus and Avril Lavigne all but forgotten, most of my material is useless.

One of Shrub's staple lines is that we must never forget September 11th. How the eff could that ever happen? How exactly could anyone forget where they were or what they were doing that day? It's like saying, "We must never forget that showing up to school naked is a bad idea." No shit? Really? Well, thankyou for reminding me every chance you get because surely it would have slipped my mind at some point. Thanks for pointing out the obvious.

The page counter has surpassed 1000 hits! Whee!!! Of course, I probably account for all but 50 of those.
Onward and upward. Chip cheerio.

Let's see....millions of jobs lost, few new jobs being created, Iraq is on the verge of civil war, Afghanistan is in total chaos and the Taliban is making a comeback, North Korea is a wild card, the Palestinians and Israelis still can't go five days without killing each other, the dollar's value is sinking, homelessness is increasing as well as poverty and the number of people without healthcare.....I know! Let's focus on gay marriage!!! gay marriage is supposed to be a "threat" to the institution of marriage, and Shrub has now announced his support for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage Why? Marriage, according to Bush, is a "sacred" institution "between one man and one woman" (except for his brother Neil). To begin with, this justification violates the clause separating church and state. He also says that "activist judges" are changing the meaning of marriage. But what could be more activist than amending the Constitution?
I'm still a little confused on this idea of gay marriage being a "threat." I'm married, and I don't exactly feel threatened. My parents divorced, but I don't think that it had anything to do with Siegfried and Roy wanting to tie the knot. Fifty percent of heterosexual marriages end in divorce, but the majority of those people end up remarrying, so the institution of marriage seems to be fairly strong. I'd think that poverty is the greater threat to marriage given that the poor are more likely to divorce than the wealthy. So if we want to protect marriage, wouldn't a constitutional amendment banning poverty be the better bet? And do we really want to get in the business of denying people equal treatment via Constitutional amendments?
The other thing that strikes me is that I always thought that it was Republicans who argued that government is too big and that it needs to stay out of people's business. Except, I guess, when it comes to what you and your partner like to do in the bedroom or on the front lawn.

But here's the crux of the issue. For a Constitutional amendment to pass, it must get a two-thirds majority in both houses of Congress and be ratified by three-quarters of all states. Is this likely to happen before the November elections? Absolutely not. Is it likely to ever happen? Maybe, maybe not. Is it a bad idea? Sure. But clearly the Bushies don't feel that they can win this election without trying to manufacture wedge issues like this one.

If anybody is making a mockery of marriage, it's Britney Spears, J-Lo, Michael Jackson, and David Gest.

Monday, February 23, 2004

Consider this fair notice that if Ahhnold is ever elected president, I will be packing my bags and leaving the country. Seriously. Me, Nathalie, and Mr.Tibbs will go somewhere else that will be more receptive to my four-day workweek proposal. Though I do find the idea of Ahhnold being president when we enter into massive global unrest and climate wars somewhat tantalizing.

Can't wait 16 years to see what it might look like when the levee breaks and we're thrust into global chaos? Watch this movie trailer for one possibility. Yay!!!
(by the way, I'm starting to think this could all just be more evidence of the nexus between big budget movies and Defense Department propaganda a'la "Top Gun.")

Everyone's weighing in on Ralph Nader's announcement that he is going to run as an independent candidate for Prez. And I just know that you're dying to hear my thoughts on the matter.
So here goes. I agree with other assessments that this is all about Nader's ego. In 2000, there was a large movement supporting his involvement, and on paper, there seemed to be few differences between Gore and Bush, so one could make the case that it didn't matter who ended up in office. But 2004 is clearly different from 2000. pResident Bush has turned out to be far more extreme than candidate Bush, and there is a distinct difference between Shrub, Kerry, and Edwards. Plus, the Supreme Court is likely to have a couple of positions open up in the next four years, and it would be dangerous to have Shrub in charge of nominating the next justice.
I agree with much of what Nader says, and I agree that we need to do away with the two-party system. But now is not the time. Given all this, I really don't think that Nader will make much of a difference because so many people are laser-like focused on the singular goal of getting Shrub out of office, and fewer people will be inclined to throw-away a vote on Nader. And so I'm not having apopleptic fits over Nader. I'm more concerned with who "The Littlest Groom" is going to choose tonight.

"Nuclear conflict, mega-droughts, famine and widespread rioting will erupt across the world."

Remember that cartoon, "Thundar the Barbarian"? A runaway meteor came hurtling too close to the Earth in the year 1994, tearing away the Earth's atmosphere and causing massive tidalwaves, earthquakes, tornados, civil unrest, "superscience and wizardry," and strange mutations in animals leading to that bizarre character Ookla the Mok. Well, it looks like a secret Pentagon report is predicting similar happenings, minus Ookla. And when will all this happen? 200 years? 100 years? Nope. In just 16 years, Britain will be "plunged into a Siberian climate." YAY!!!

If you only read one thing today, make it this article. Whenever I watch movies that depict mass chaos and civil unrest, I wonder to myself how well I would fare in that situation. Thanks to our oh-so progressive environmental and energy policies that have been crafted over the last three decades, it looks like I'll get my chance. And in 16 years when you're knifing your neighbor in the back over the last gallon of clean water in your makeshift compound, just remember your good friend James who told you that it'd be a good idea to watch kung-fu movies to practice up on your kung-fu grip.

But who has time to worry about scary stuff like that when the finale of "My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance" is on the telly tonight?

On Edit: Just to give you a sense of how twisted and warped my mind is, consider this--the Pentagon report above is an intentional overstatement of the global warming situation with the purpose being to whip up fear among the sheeple who will then be more than happy to give up civil liberties in favor of being protected by the government and virtuous corporations who only have the people's best interests in mind. And to protect ourselves from this impending doom, rather than cut back on the bloated defense budget, we need to increase our spending so that when the time comes, we'll be ready to kill everyone else and take their resources. So this is all just a ruse, a cleverly devised sleight of hand.
"But this is embarrassing to a president who has all but said that global warming is a hoax," you say. Maybe the military-industrial complex has decided that Shrub is no longer the useful idiot that he has been for three years now. But even I find that little bit of reasoning a stretch. So who knows.

Friday, February 20, 2004

Is ketchup a vegetable? No.
Is assembling the Whopper at Burger King a manufacturing job? Maybe, according to the Bushies.

The Economic Report of the President, the same one with the dubious job predictions that nobody will stand behind, asks the question, "When a fast-food restaurant sells a hamburger, for example, is it providing a 'service' or is it combining inputs to 'manufacture' a product?"

Seriously, people, you can't make up stuff like this.

Item! When I got home from work yesterday, I walked in the door, and Nathalie was sitting at the computer with the news on the telly. Before I can take off my coat and put away the groceries, she starts railing about the Bush tax cuts, an uninformed electorate that doesn't realize how much the tax cuts were skewed to the rich, and people blindly voting along party lines without knowing what the facts are. And I said to her, "Wow, so this must be what it's like to live with me."

Then I had a dream last night that I walked outside and started screaming at some random people about what a miserable failure Shrub has been--the lost jobs, illegal war based on deception, massive deficits, war profiteering, joke medicare bill, lost respect of the world, etc etc. And then I went back inside the apartment and realized that there was a whole other room that we hadn't been using.
The last time that I had a dream like this, I was yelling at Shrub himself. Maybe my subconscious needs to have these cathartic events in order to keep me from actually accosting random people on the street. And maybe tonight I can go back to dreaming about being able to dunk a basketball or play drums for a Led Zeppelin reunion tour.

Item! From the NY Daily News gossip column:
GET READY TO RUMBLE: Fox News star Bill O'Reilly apparently has done something to annoy Snoop Dogg, the tough-talking rapper who has, I hope, put his tough-acting ways behind him.
When Maxim magazine asked Snoop whom he wants to fight, the rapper replied: "Bill O'Reilly, that bitch-a--. 'Cause he's a bitch."
O'Reilly said yesterday through a Fox flack, "I'll be happy to have lunch with him anytime."
No, Bill, maybe you didn't hear right: That's punch, not lunch.

Item! The Bushies are planning their ad campaign against John Kerry, and the strategy appears to be trying to use Kerry's past against him. There are two more indications that these people live on some other planet. First, the Bushies say that Kerry's anti-war activism is fair game as they will try to tarnish his image as a decorated veteran. Even after all the TANG controversy, it is amazing that they would go this route. And it's not like there are many people around these days other than the chickenhawks in the administration who avoided military service who think that the Vietnam war was a good thing. Of course, in 2002, the Republicans managed to question the patriotism of former Ga. Senator Max Cleland, a Vietnam vet who left three limbs over there.
And secondly, the turd who is the the chief media advisor for the Bushies says, "The beauty of John Kerry is 32 years of votes and public pronouncements." So if the past 32 years of statements are also fair game, then will the Kerry campaign see the beauty in these statements from Shrub's past?

Reporter: "When you're not talking politics, what do you and [your father] talk about?"
Shrub: "Pussy."

In response to a question on marijuana or cocained use: "It is irrelevant what I did 20 to 30 years ago."

When asked about militants in Iraq attacking American forces: "Bring 'em on."

On deficits: "You know, I was campaigning in Chicago and somebody asked me, is there ever any time where the budget might have to go into deficit? I said only if we were at war or had a national emergency or were in recession. Little did I realize we'd get the trifecta." (the funny thing here is that he said this on at least sixteen different occasions, yet it was Gore who actually made those three caveats during the campaign. And who'd they tar as being dishonest? To his credit though, Shrub added the joke about the "trifecta" because 9/11, war, and a bad economy are so goddam funny.)

And just for kicks, "Families is where our nation finds hope, where wings take dream"

My point here is, I don't think they've got much ground to stand on. But in an indication that even the Bushies realize this, they say that they will campaign on Shrub's proposals rather than his accomplishments. That, I have to agree, is a rather simple choice to make since Shrub's main accomplishment has been to make Franklin Pierce look like a competent president. Ooh, SNAP! Nuthin brings down the house like a good Franklin Pierce joke.

Thursday, February 19, 2004

Wouldn't a coin jar just be easier? Not when you're krazy.

And todays' feel-good story is that former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling was made to do the perpwalk. He was indicted on 10 counts of insider trading; 13 counts of securities fraud; four counts of wire fraud; seven counts of making false statements, and one count of conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud. Now, if you wanted to keep score at home, see how many news stories are aired regarding Skilling compared to how many stories have already been aired on Martha Stewart.
If the government were really serious about cracking down on corporate crime, then they would make a example out of Skilling by sentencing him to do hard time with Charles Manson and Sirhan Sirhan at California's Corcoran State Prison. And bunk him with someone like Vern Schillinger of HBO's "Oz."

My younger brother says on his blog that today is Fat Thursday in Poland. From the way he describes it, it is the greatest day that I could imagine.

But here, it's just Thursday.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

If you were voted into office in a state facing a serious budget crisis, and you campaigned on restoring fiscal responsibility and "terminating" government waste, would this make your priority shortlist? Click on the link....Do it!...Do it NOW!!! (and then watch these amazing commercials featuring everyone's favorite body-builder/governator)

You'll be glad to know that "shock rocker" Marilyn Manson has settled a lawsuit accusing him of sexual assault. According to the suit, Manson (a.k.a. Paul from the "Wonder Years") approached a security guard and "wrapped his legs around the guard's neck and gyrated against him while wearing only a leather thong and panty hose." If I had a dollar....
Now if someone would only bring a lawsuit against Marilyn Manson for marketing incredibly predictable and boring music. Like those guys who sued Creed (see 2/7/04 post). And every single newsperson who prefaces Manson's name with "shock rocker" should be thrown into the gallows. Really, he's about as shocking as Christina Aguilera walking around dressed like a $20 hooker. And I think I'm being generous with that $20 figure.

It all reminds me of an article in The Onion about Marilyn Manson going door-to-door trying to shock people:
"[Manson] was standing at my front door wearing those fake breasts he wore on the cover of Mechanical Animals," retiree Judith Hahn said. "He said, 'My name is Marilyn Manson, and I'm here to tear your little world apart.' I thought he was collecting for the Kiwanis food drive, so I gave him some cans of pumpkin-pie filling."

Remember the forecast last week by the Bushies that we'd have over 3 million new jobs this year? Nevermind, says the administration:

WASHINGTON - The White House backed away Wednesday from its own prediction that the economy will add 2.6 million new jobs before the end of this year, saying the forecast was the work of number-crunchers and that President Bush was not a statistician.

Someone else called this the "unfrozen caveman lawyer" defense. "Ladies and gentlemen, I am just a caveman. I fell on some ice and later got thawed out by some of your scientists. Your world frightens and confuses me! Sometimes when I go up in the sky in one of your mechanical birds, I think, 'Oh god, I've been swallowed by this bird, let me out!' I don't know, my primitive mind can't grasp these concepts. But I do know this. We must work to create a more robust and growing economy with more jobs. Now, will these jobs involve tracking and slaying mastadons, and will they provide a comprehensive health insurance plan? I'm not sure, I'm just a caveman. But I call on Congress to make my tax cuts permanent. Thankyou."

There's been some scuttlebutt in recent months that Shrub will drop Cheney from the ticket and replace him with someone else (Giuliani maybe?). Not so, say the Bushies. White House spokesperson Scotty McMuffin said, "those rumors are ridiculous." If they do dump Cheney, the reason would be Cheney's health--he has had four heart attacks afterall. But even Halliburton says that their relationship with tricky Dick is "a risk factor." Now, when Halliburton considers you an unsavory character, that's not a good sign. Cheney has said that Veep will be his last job, but I'd like to think that he's mistaken and that his last job will be breaking up rocks in a prison camp.

So have you heard the one about administration officials leaking the identity of a valuable counterterrorism asset in an attempt to smear a critic? Think I'm talking about the Plame case? Nope. John Ashcroft is being sued by a federal prosecutor for interfering with a terror case. How much of a dick do you have to be to get sued by the very department that you're in charge of?

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

This past Fall, FOX was hyping its latest incarnation of 90210, "The O.C." as the greatest show that you'd never seen before. I was not impressed in the least. If you want a great show with people who are supposed to be teenagers, then you can't do any better than "Hey Dude," that classic Nickelodeon show. Where was I? Oh yeah, "The O.C." As with most cheesy television, I ended up watching a few episodes. The characters were kinda quirky, it was sorta funny, and really, what else am I going to do?
But I don't watch anymore for a couple of reasons. First, in its first season they've had two episodes with gunplay. And neither time ended up with someone dead. If you're going to have two gun episodes in one season, somebody had best be getting killed. And then the writers bring in this psycho character, Oliver, who is subsequently involved with the second gun episode. This is doubly bad for the show because bringing in a character named Oliver is when most people agree "The Brady Bunch" jumped the shark. So you've just got some bad karma chameleons there. They come and go, they come and go. And finally, the commercials for this week's Valentine's episode have Seth (oh, like you don't know who I'm talking about) breathlessly telling Summer, "Because for me, it's you, Summer, it's always been you!" Oh wow! You mean, like, for all 18 episodes?!? That's so, so deep.

Some of the best comedy relating to Shrub these days has been coming from the Late Show with Letterman. One of their more recent features has been the "Late Show Unfair Edit" where they splice together different clips of video. Last night it was Bush saying, "Vice President Dick Cheney / He's a deceiver. He's a liar. He's a torturer. He's a murderer. I would be very skeptical about anything he says." And then during the "Who Said It" quiz, there were these gems:
-"President Bush has been a strong and able leader on both foreign and domestic issues." Who said it? Paul is not sure. Who said it? - Actually, nobody said that.
-"It appears fair and democratic elections won't happen here for some time." Who said it? Paul thinks an official in Iraq. Nope. It was Florida Governor Jeb Bush.

My dad passed along an Op-Ed in the NYTimes, "My War," by Larry David describing his experiences in the Guard. My dad flew helicopters in Vietnam and had this to say about AWOL, "Shrub was guarding against air attack from Guatemala, perhaps Uruguay?" But don't underestimate Guatemala. Make no mistake--ever since they were freed from Spanish colonial rule in 1821, they've been a force to be reckoned with. With annual military expenditures of $120 million and as a major transit country for cocaine and heroin, those uppity Guatemalans are surely deserving of a preemptive attack (figures courtesy CIA World Factbook. The CIA--working to overthrow governments since 1947). This expenditure compares with the 2004 US Defense budget request of $400 billion which doesn't include a dime for the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq. Cheers!

As I was heading out the door to go to work today, Nathalie pointed out that I had one of my pantlegs tucked into my sock. So this is what it has come to. I'm walking around with my pants tucked into my socks. I thought I wasn't supposed to start doing that sort of thing for at least another forty years.

Some follow-up on the "whites only" scholarship. Jason Mattera, the kid behind it says, "If you are a white student on campus, you don't have anyone helping you." a private university in Rhode Island that costs 29K/yr for tuition/room/board, there really isn't anyone helping the white kids. It must be tough. Especially for Mattera since he received a $5,000 Sallie Mae Fund scholarship for Hispanic students.

Self-awareness just isn't a universally shared trait. For example, the Bush campaign released an internet ad criticizing John Kerry for taking money from special interests. That's akin to Charles Manson calling Latoya Jackson a little bit crazy. The Kerry campaign quickly released their own video demonstrating the hypocrisy of the Bush video. (And as an aside, the link for the bush campaign ad is "" there is a glimmer of hidden truth there).

Monday, February 16, 2004

Item! Breaking News--The Ground Round has closed its restaurants. I'm shocked. Shocked, I say. Apparently the parent company went bankrupt and announced on Friday that all franchise restaurants would be shut down after that night. When I applied there in June, 2002, I told the manager, "I'm not very ambitious," and that I saw myself working there for a long time. So they've pre-empted my dreams of one day returning to the Round and serving up more cinnamon dippers, club sammiches, and mozzarella sticks. But most of all, the mystery of the meaning behind the name may never be answered. It is a dark day my friends, a dark day indeed. (I'm still trying to figure out a way to get my G.R. page back up and running)

Item! I need to find a way to add a new feature to the page titled "The Nathalie Retort." This would be a section where Nathalie could post her reactions to or critiques of my own posts, a place for her to respond to or expand on my ramblings, delusions, or invasive thoughts. The first issue would deal with the name of the feature. She prefers "The Rebuttal." Other items she would discuss:
1. How it should be her typing this right now, not me.
2. NASCAR...I fell asleep while watching, so I didn't pick up on the intricacies, "the subtleties of the sport of NASCAR's like a chessgame," she says. Also, she says that I "slept through one of the largest Super Bowl events in history and missed it."
3. I am not a "person of excellence." (I assumed that this would just go unstated and understood) "A person of excellence doesn't have friends betting on how many times a month he showers. A person of excellence doesn't make their own 2-for-1 sales at Wal-Mart." She's joking, of course. Nobody bets on my shower habits anymore, and I haven't shopped at Wal-Mart in a long time.
4. Okay, this last one is inappropriate, so I'm going to leave it alone.

Props to K-dawg for pointing out this article about College Republicans offering a whites-only award.
People just don't realize how hard it is being a white guy these days with THE MAN trying to keep my neck pinned down under his big ol' boot of oppression. When I'm out at night, cops don't even look at me, man. What's a cracker gotta do for a little bit of attention? And anytime that I'm in a clothing store, bunches of employees are all up in my face trying to sell me stuff and whatnot. I just want to try on my Old Navy cargopants without some headset-wearing sales associate being like, "Can I help you with something, sir?" When I apply for a job, I often receive a callback, and in the past I've actually been hired. Do you really think I want to work? Hells no. And when old ladies see me heading their way, none of them ever clutch their purses or walk to the other side of the street. Am I not hardcore? Do I not scare you, little old lady? Please. Haven't you heard Limp Bizkit? Have you not listened to Eminem? Or Staind? White dudes have a lot to piss and moan about, y'all. Not exactly sure what about, but it's high time that society started treating white guys a little more favorably. For real, yo.

On Edit: And I forgot to mention the unfair stereotypying of white guys in movies and television. Always showing us as holding good jobs, running businesses, obeying the law, driving fancy cars, being in powerful and respected positions, or just as hardworking types simply trying to do the best for their families. Don't you know the kind of pressure that places on us as a people?

Hilarious clip from the Shop at Home Network by way of Joel (not Osteen). Lookie here.

One note on the Daytona 500. Shrub was there to deliver the ol' "Start your engines" line. But why just say that when he could go a step further, saying, "Laura and I are honored to be here for this fantastic spectacle. We ask God's blessings on the drivers, NASCAR fans and on our great nation. Now it is my honor to start this race. Gentlemen, start your engines." So for the drivers that were in wrecks and didn't finish, does that mean that god doesn't love them? I swear, Shrub can't go 10 minutes without tossing religion into whatever he's talking about. Yet we're afraid of religious extremists in other nations.
Not everyone in the crowd was in awe of Shrubby:
Harry Meeks, 55, an owner of health clubs in Orlando, said he voted for Bush in 2000 but is considering the Democrats for the first time in his life. "Let's face it -- the economy isn't that great, and there was deceit about the war," Meeks said. "He needs to come clean on Iraq and come up with a real program for the economy that benefits people who don't make more than $200,000 a year."
But then you had others like this guy:
"He's like me," said Thomas Hanner, 58, a self-employed contractor from Sarasota, Fla. "His swagger, his confidence -- I can relate to his thinking."
So Thomas Hanner of Sarasota can relate to exaggerating and distoring intelligence, playing on people's fears of terrorism, and exploiting the memory of 9/11 in order to start an illegal war resulting in 1000s of deaths and thousands more injuries? He can relate to rolling back environmental regulations for the short-term profit of campaign contributors at the long-term expense of public health? He can relate to taking a budget surplus and turning it into record deficits, and blaming this on a recession he inhereted, terror attacks, and two wars rather than on his reckless economic policies and tax cuts for the wealthy? He also thinks that Africa is a nation?
Damn, Thomas Hanner. You are one complex NASCAR fan.

When you live a life without cable television, sometimes you are presented with slim pickins in choosing which program to watch. Now, you might say, "Why not just turn off the tv and read, exercise, bake a pie, knit a sweter, etc?" Maybe, but not when Joel Osteen is on the tube. Joel Osteen is the minister at the Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas. This is one of those churches that holds a couple thousand people there, has a huge stage, and jumbotron screens. But Joel can make you feel like he's talking to you and only you. His sermon was that you need to mow your lawn, not go out in public looking sloppy, and keep your car from becoming a garbage can. He stopped short of saying that you ought to wash your hands only with a new bar of soap, open and close your door three times before leaving home, and carrying ten packets of sugar in your pockes at all times. His point was that you should strive to be "a person of excellence." When you shower before going to the grocery store, you're a person of excellence. When you pay your bills, then you are a person of excellence. When you lead a life that isn't sloppy, you're a person of excellence. If you want a video or audio of the sermon, you can visit his site, It is a most excellent website.
I like to imagine that guys like Joel Osteen lead a double-life. By day, he's a good ol' boy minister with a soft southern drawl, delivering sermons about being a person of excellence. But then when he gets home, he's a total crackhead. He hangs out poolside drinking margaritas and doing massive amounts off hookers' backs. And after he's done that, he pulls out a shotgun and blows away watermelons. Or cantaloupes. Then after another 96 hour binge, he cleans up, puts on his new blue blazer, and goes back to his congregation as a person of excellence.
This sort of narrative just helps to move things along.

We also watched the Daytona 500 today. Nathalie seemed to get into it more than I did. The car wrecks really do make it worthwhile, just waiting to see a big old pile-up. And then after the pile-ups, it's hilarious to listen to the drivers talk about it. And they get pissed. One dude was like, "Wayul, ah hayud one rookih down bulow meh, an thin anotha came down undah heem, an thin they wricked mah car." The announcers reminded us of the the announcers in "Best in Show." One was a little more professional sounding, and the other was a little unhinged. After a fantastic wreck that left one car upside down, the wacky announcer says, "Well why don't they just flip the car over so he can get out?!?" The other said, "If he's hurt in there, they probably don't want to have him moving around." Makes sense. But this is NASCAR, so you can guess what they ended up doing afterall.

And for those of you keeping score at home, the Seven Seas restaurant provided a meal of excellence. I didn't go for the live fish in a bucket, but the double lamb delight was doubly delicious, and Nathalie enjoyed her Shrimp and Chicken Kung Pao.

Friday, February 13, 2004

Car Update: Geico is going to pay for the car to be repaired. Huzzah! It was a close call though. This is much better than having the car declared totaled and being out several thousand on the remaining loan. And in the meantime, we won't mind driving around the 2004 Nissan Maxima rental. What's cooler than being cool? Ice cold. Actually, Nathalie will be driving the Maxima, and I'll be driving the Bushmobile. Ever since I put the "Bush Lies," "Leave No Millionaire Behind," and "Regime Change Begins at Home" bumperstickers on the car, she hasn't wanted to drive it. I can't understand why not.

My younger brother has suggested on his blog an alternative to my four-day-workweek plan. "To solve this problem, I propose a national Leisure Employment Program. 'Leper' for short. Through the Leper program socially conscious individuals...will be paid to enjoy life for all those people who are too caught up in their jobs to do so....Leper employees will even have the option of working 7 days a week, and into the wee hours of the morning if necessary." See his blog for full details.
While this would be a bold initiative, it would create too shallow a recovery that would not sustain the level of growth and increased government revenues that my plan would generate.

I'll bet that when some of you, my faithful and loyal brethren, read my four-day-workweek proposal, you thought it was just another crackpot idea of mine. Like how the Reagan administration covertly funded "Top Gun" as a way to drum up support for a bloated defense budget in the face of the coming end of the Cold War. Ooh! Look at all the neat planes! Shadowy threats in the Middle East! Anthony Edwards (Goose) playing volleyball shirtless! Yeah, you know what I'm talkin about. By the way, in the beach volleyball scene, all Tom Cruise's shots were done separately. They had to lower the net so that you wouldn't notice that he's only 4'6" tall.
Anyway, my point here is that if we'd just do things my way, then it'd already be the weekend. Who's crazy now?

I'll tell you who's crazy. The 44% of the people in the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll who approve of the way that Shrub is handling the economy. Yet only 14% of those polled say that they're better off financially today than they were three years ago. Wha???

And for the record, I didn't watch "The Apprentice." But in the offchance that one of the contestants was mauled by a leopard, someone please let me know.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

Ken and Barbie have broken up. Desperate marketing ploy, or did Ken follow Tom Cruise's lead and finally come out of the closet? What? He didn't? My bad. Did you know that Tom Cruise is only 4'10" tall? Seriously. He's tiny.
Prez.Shrub issued this statement: "The break-up of Ken and Barbie is further proof that we must act now to protect the sanctity of marriage from activist judges who rule without regard for the people or the anatominomiclically incorrect dolls their younguns play with. Marriage is between one man and one woman, my brother Neil excluded." He added, "9/11, 9/11, terror, tax cuts, terror."

The jury is still out on whether the car will be totaled, but the verdict is in regarding KFC's tasty food products.
Which reminds me of a classic Far Side cartoon.

All throughout grad school, I never had a car. Tucson is one of the more bike-friendly cities around, and my little world existed within a 4 mile radius. But people would always say, "How can you live without having a car? When are you gonna get a car? Don't you want a car?" But life was so much more simple without the troubles of owning an automobile. No car payments; no car insurance; no $1.69/gallon gas; no maintenance costs; no being the designated driver. And if some old lady wanted to drive through a red light and slam into me on my bike, then I'd sue her for all she's worth and pay off all my debt.

It's Thursday, and that means that it's time for "The Apprentice." This week's prediction: I predict that after several weeks of watching, the producers still haven't made me care about these wanna-be yuppie scum, and it's becoming clear that none of them will be mauled by a leopard (see post below), so I won't watch.

And if I were Supreme Chancellor of the Northern Landmass, then Thursday would also mean that it's time for the weekend. Because in my world, the workweek would be limited to four days. Time spent at work would be more productive with less waste (i.e. what're you doing reading this, shouldn't you be busy?). Employers could then hire more people to pick up those other hours. Place limits on CEO benefits packages and redirect that money to compensate for higher payroll costs. Then cut back defense spending to subsidize businesses that hire more people. And tax the hell out of the rich. And if the rich try to move to the Cayman Islands or some other tax haven, then we invade those places in self-defense. Jobs and growth, babyyyy!!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Car Update: Estimated cost of repairs--$6232.93 Will Geico pay for the repairs? Will it be declared totaled?? Did Kentucky Fried Chicken change their name to KFC because there was so little actual chicken meat in the product that they couldn't legally call it chicken? Stay tuned to find out.

The issue of gay marriage is going to be on the surface all year. Dubya's talking points relate to his belief in "the sanctity of marriage," and that "marriage is a sacred institution between a man and a woman." I wonder how he feels then about his brother Neil who is in the middle of a messy divorce. Turns out that while in Thailand for another shady business deal, Neil had several women show up at his hotel room. He opened the door, they entered, and he had sex with them. Now, no money was exchanged, and he did not know the women. The judge asked him about it, and Neil said, "It was very unusual." Indeed! And remember, Thailand has a reputation for trafficking in underage prostitution, something Shrub has also spoken out against. But my sources at the RNC tell me that somehow, some way, Bill Clinton's penis is to blame.

PORT SULPHUR, La. (AP) -- A woman who had raised her pet leopard from a cub was mauled by the animal, but survived after a deputy shot the 100-pound cat as its jaws were clamped on its owner's head, authorities said. Full Article

I admit, I'm not an expert on animals. I've never taken a course in zoology. I fulfilled my science credits in college by looking at rocks and sleeping through an 8:00 geography class. But I do know this: if you raise a pet leopard, then it's really only a matter of time until its jaws will be clamped on your head. Our cat, Mr.Tibbs, clamps his jaws around my hand or arm whenever he's in the mood, and then he'll taunt me, saying things like, "yeah, you got that right, you bastard!"
Speaking of Mr.Tibbs, I'm worried that he might be bulemic. He yakked up his food after eating this morning, but at least he moved away from the food bowl before doing so. Last time, he yakked while sitting there eating. Most cats instinctively quit eating when they're full, so maybe he's just lacking in that capacity. Or, he drinks way too much water after eating, causing the food to swell and upset his stomach. He does have a bit of an obsession with water--he stares at the water reservoir in the humidifier, gets in the shower in the morning, sticks his head in any glass containing water, and he'll just sit and watch his the water streaming in his kitty water fountain. "Water," he says, "is the essence of life!"

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

While the right hand waves around in the air to distract you, the left hand lifts your wallet from your back pocket.

Bush supports the shift of while-collar and factory jobs overseas, and at the same time forecasts the creation of 3.4 million new jobs this year. With only 125,000 new jobs in January, that's an average of 300,000/month the rest of the year. Wal-Mart and McDonalds must really be hiring these days. But when have Dubya's predictions ever been wrong?

Valentine's Day is coming up, and it's my job to find a good restaurant. I figured that I'd check the restaurant guide on the website. One thing that I've liked about the Post site is that unlike the NY Times, LA Times, or Chicago Tribune websites, no login name was necessary, all the info was out there for the taking. Not any more. The Post requires that you login to see certain areas of the website, I think for now it's just the entertainment section.
To register, you have to give your occupation, the industry that you're in, how many people work at your jobsite, your age, and a few other things. According to my registration, I'm a 104 year old CEO of an agricultural/mining corporation with 10,000+ employees.
And this old man will be dining at the Seven Seas, a Chinese seafood restaurant. According to a review on the Post, the "West Lake Style" beef soup is "like egg-drop soup on steroids." And if you order a whole fish, they'll bring the live fish to your table in a plastic bucket before cooking it up. That just sounds like too much fun to pass up.

It seems like there is a brewing shitstorm getting ready to hit the Bushies. Grand jury testimony has been given on the outing of the CIA operative, so it could be only a matter of time before indictments are handed down implicating people in Cheney's office. Cheney is becoming an increasing liability what with all the Halliburton shenanigans and Cheney's duckhunting trip with Scalia. Questions continue to be raised regarding Shrub's time in the TANG, and there's now talk that he may have been transferred to a disciplinary unit. The economy is still in the crapper, and then there was Dub's terrible performance on Meet the Press.

On the Late Show last night, they introduced a new segment called, "The George W. Bush Tough Guy Jaw Clench." In reference to Osama bin Forgotten, Dub says, "I know we're on the hunt," and then he clenches his jaw and does a little head bob. What a boob.

I'm listening to the WH Press Conference right now, and Scotty McClellan is getting hammered on the AWOL issue. Someone just brought up the point that nobody can verify that Shrub ever performed service in 1973. This is highly suspicious--there was even a $3500 reward offered during the 2000 election for anyone who would come forward and verify that they served with Dub. Calpundit seems to be the one ahead of the game on this story.

In a way, I miss Ari Fleischer. He was so much more smarmy than McClellan, but Scottyboy just doesn't have that same flair and panache in dissembling or misrepresenting the facts. It's like Ari was the Professor Emeritus in the Art of Bullshitting, and Scottyboy is his first-year grad student T.A. who is clearly not up to the task.

Of course, I've been towing this whole line for the last year, but it just seems like something has changed and they're no longer able to keep all their stories straight.

Monday, February 09, 2004

Watching the Grammys last night, and the camera cuts to J.C. Chasez(pronounced "sha-ZAY") of 'N Sync fame. Nathalie says, "Hey, it's JC ChaSEZ. He's Justin Timberlake's seatwarmer."

Coldplay singer Chris Martin endorsed John Kerry for prez. But Bush will still strive for the coveted White Stripes endorsement. Dubya said, "Yeah, they've got that 'Seven Nation Army'...I kinda like that, sorta like our coalition of the willing. 9/11, 9/11, terror, terror, rape room, madman, terror." Dick Cheney added, "Oogie Boogie!"

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Last night, I was channel surfing our seven tv channels (eight if you include telemundo), and I stopped on the Craig Kilborn show. I normally don't watch Craigers because the only good thing he has ever done was to leave The Daily Show, thus allowing Jon Stewart's ascent to greatness. The reason I stopped was because his guest appeared to be Scott Stapp, the lead singer for Creed. That awful, awful, awful band. I say "appeared" because Mr.Stapp was all puffy and swollen like the Sta-Puf Marshmallow Man. For a second, I thought that it might have been the lead singer from the Creed tribute band named My Sacrifice. Some of you may remember this band from this awesome clip on The Daily Show where Rob Corddry interviewed two fans who were suing Creed for sucking.
Here's what I learned from the interview: 1)Mr.Stapp already looks like he's ready for his "VH1: Where Are They Now?" segment. 2)Creed hasn't broken up (awww), but they are taking a break (yay!!!). 3) Mr.Stapp will have a solo album coming out later this year. Which leads me to this question: If when together, Creed is incredibly bad, just really really bad, then what will happen when each member pursues a solo career? Will Scott Stapp be even worse on his own, or will his power to bring cheesy rock ballads be weakened? Can he strike the Jesus Christ-pose on his own, or is it the collective dark energy of Creed that makes him such a tool? It's like when there's a huge flock of pigeons, together they can leave a massive amount of bird crap in their wake. But when they're apart, they still crap everywhere. So no matter what the members of Creed do, we can expect to see a whole lotta crap.

Friday, February 06, 2004

So my mom tells me that she's been perusing this site. It's a good thing then that in the post about CB radios I left out the part about how we'd hit the crackpipe and cruise for hookers after downing the grape soda and donuts.

Grumpy old man quote of the day from an AP story on Bush's sinking numbers:
"I think he's run the country into the ground economically, and he comes out with these crazy ideas like going to Mars and going to the moon," said Richard Bidlack, a 78-year-old retiree from Boonton, N.J., who says he voted for Bush in 2000. "I'm so upset at Bush, I'll vote for a chimpanzee before I vote for him."

More snow and sleet and ice and rain up in herrrrre today. Nasty.

Our car isn't totaled. The preliminary damage estimate is $3700, but that is sure to go up when the people at the garage look at it. We're going to go take some pictures this weekend, so I'll have to find a way to link those up to herrrrre.

After the 2000 Florida recount debacle, the government vowed that the old systems would be modernized in order to prevent a situation like that one from ever happening again. Touch-screen computerized voting was the most favored solution for this. Unfortunately, there are all sorts of problems with these machines, the main one being that an election could easily be stolen and nobody would have any way of proving it since there isn't a paper-trail left (and there's good evidence that this may have already happened). You get a receipt at McDonalds or at the ATM, but you don't get one with your vote. Mark Fiore has a good animation that sums it all up pretty nicely.

And I can't believe that Rudy is off of "Survivor"! But his testimonial after being voted off was so sweet, "If I was them (who voted for me), I have a lot of friends in a lot of places, so I'd stay clear of me." He's just so adorable.

Thursday, February 05, 2004

"The Apprentice" starts at 8:44 tonight. 8:44? Must be another SUPER-SIZED episode of "Friends" that I'm sure not to want to miss b/c it's the episode that everyone will be talking about, and oh good lord "Friends" is just the best show ever, and there's no way that any other show set in New York could ever be so white, and how will we ever live without it?

I'll be watching "Survivor" anyway. But my "Apprentice" picks this week are as such:
If a man is fired, it will be Nick. If it's a woman, it will be Ereka.

There's been a lot of hubbub in the news these days regarding Dubya's (missing) time in the Texas Air National Guard. If you don't really have the time to read a dozen articles on the topic, check this out. And it looks like there are a couple of easy ways to settle any confusion on the matter.

Before the Star Wars Kid, when times were simpler, there was one internet icon that brought joy to millions. Only one word is needed for this phenomenon--Mahir!

And here you can see what he's been up to since he shook the world in 1999.

Not sure who to vote for this November? Take this quick survey on various issues to see who you are most closely alligned with (thanks to Zack for passing along the link). I matched Dennis Kucinich with a score of 100%, followed by Al Sharpton (huh?), John Kerry, and Howard Dean. I matched Dubya with a score of 3%. I'm not sure where I went wrong to get that 3% unless Dub also strongly opposes kicking puppies. But given how he treats his own dog, I'm not sure.

This here is very entertaining--Bushified, that's "super entertainingitical."

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

I just heard on the 10:00 news that two men talking on a CB radio in Hagerstown, MD, were having an argument. They met up at the mall, and one man shot the other.
Now, maybe someone should have explained to these mental giants that the great thing about CB radios is that you can argue with someone, call them every name in the book, talk about their momma, and still not have to worry about any repercussions. Showing up at an agreed upon location violates this principle.
Growing up in Roanoke, VA, meant that you were bound to have friends who had CBs in their cars. One friend's handle was Kato, and I think the others were Pervie and Hootie McDoogle. When I rode along, I was Bongo. Don't ask, cuz I don't know. This was back in the day when "Beavis and Butthead" was pretty popular. So our usual Friday night m.o. was to drive around and find the CB channel being used by the truckers on I-81. We'd then get on the air and say B&B lines such as, "Huh huh...You may not be really hot, but I bet you like to do it" or "Are you threatening me?" and ", two...three?" Once in a while some trucker would not take very kindly to our hijinks, and we handled this in the most mature way we knew how--name-calling and cussing and making crude noises. And then we'd go by the Krogers grocery store to get a 34 cent donut and a 25 cent Big K generic cola. The grape soda goes well with the sour cream cake donut. Just so you know.

Okay. That's going to do it. Nathalie is mocking me.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

What's this? More war profiteering by Halliburton? Nothing says "support the troops" like charging for meals that you didn't provide. Betcha didn't know that a French judge's investigation into charges of bribery while Cheney was head of Halliburton could lead to his being charged with "misuse of corporate assets." Damn that liberal media!
Well, it's a good thing that Halliburton was awarded another $1.2 billion contract to repair the Iraqi oil facilities. They did such a good job importing gasoline from Kuwait that the military terminated the contract. And let's not forget the shenanigans with Halliburton folks accepting $6.3 million in kickbacks.
And if smoking marijuana means that you're supporting the terrorists, then one can only wonder what Halliburton is doing when they sell about $40 million a year worth of oil field services to the Iranian Government, or when under Cheney's watchful eye Halliburton was doing bidness with Saddam.

But what I'm really upset over is that they are going to seal, not destroy, Saddam's ultra-hightech underground batcave. Why? They want to prevent it from becoming a tourist attractoin. File this under things I could have been told before I booked a trip to Tikrit! Spring in the Sunni Triangle is to die for.

We tuned in to "American Idol" last night that...okay, I have no good reason why. In typical FOX fashion, the show was just more of the same--good auditions/bad auditions and more generally creepy and pathetic people. So we popped in the tape of the first episode of "Survivor All-Stars." Fairly entertaining, and I was glad to see Rudy and Rupert hit it off well. On one of the other tribes--Mogo Mojo or Shakira or whatever--Rob Mariano, aka "Boston Rob" is arguing with another person and says, "Since day one you've blah blah blah...." But didn't they just flash on the screen "Day 2"? So why not just say, "since yesterday." Oh, that's right, because they're all frickin mo-rons.
I was just at the UPN website (oh right, like you don't have it bookmarked), and the teaser for tonight's episode of "America's Next Top Model" reads, "One girl is told her personal style resembles that of a prostitute, while another girl struggles with a hidden illness." Those two are so going to win.

Monday, February 02, 2004

Today is Groundhog Day. Punxsutawney Phil emerged from his undisclosed location and saw his shadow, thus dooming us to another six weeks of winter. For this, the crowd booed poor Phil. My friends, they booed a groundhog. Mind you, groundhogs are rodents and are not really all that cute in person, create problems for cattle farmers with their tunnels, and lack the same degree of charisma exuded by other types of burrowing creatures. But still, I wouldn't go so far as to actually boo one. Our family dog, Kuma, whacked a couple of groundhogs back in the day. Those groundhogs were named "meat."

It's the morning after. Our car is still wrecked, and I'm still pissed. I've talked to Geico, granny's insurer, and told them that we expect them to pay for all the damages and for the rental car we'll have to get in the meantime. But, they're still "investigating" and so it'll be some time before everything is settled.
I'm still thinking about the unique sound made by our car being sandwiched. Sorta like a blown-up paper bag being popped and crumpled.

Speaking of investigations, here's the oxymoron quote of the day: "President Bush today said he will appoint an 'independent bipartisan commission' to review U.S. intelligence on weapons of mass destruction."

In other news: fox appoints bipartisan coyote/fox panel to investigate missing chickens. "I want to know the truth," says fox.

Sunday, February 01, 2004

Maybe it was b/c I was talking to my mom on the phone at the time, but my jaw hit the floor when during the Superbowl halftime show Justin Timberlake introduced the world to Janet Jackson's right breast. And CBS' and J.T.'s explanation that it was unplanned is about as believable as Dubya's call for an "independent" investigation into the missing WMD.

You could probably guess that the leading cause of traffic accidents on Superbowl Sunday is drunk driving. But did you know that the second leading cause is old ladies driving through red lights?

Case in Point:
Nathalie and I went out in our one-year old Saturn, the only brand new car either of us has ever had, for coffee this morning. On our way back from Starbucks, we were the first car stopped at a red light across the street from our apartment building. Right across the street. Stopped behind us is a Jeep Grand Cherokee, and on the opposite side of the road, there is a red Ford Taurus also stopped facing in our direction. All of a sudden, the red Taurus pulls out into the intersection--while the light is still red--and I say, "What the eff is that car doing?" As soon as I say that, a minivan heading through the intersection from our right slams on its breaks and avoids t-boning the Taurus. But without enough time to stop, the minivan hits the rear bumper of the Taurus, turning the Taurus dead-straight in our direction. At this split-second, I realize what's about to happen and start to scream as many curses as one can in three seconds. The woman in the Taurus makes no effort to brake or to correct her direction, and she slams into us head-on, driving us backwards into the Jeep.
Nathalie was holding her coffee, and lucky enough it wasn't scalding hot, because the coffee went first all over her face from the front impact, and then all over the windshield, dash, and rest of the car from the rear impact.
The woman in the Taurus gets out, had to be in her late 70s if not over 80, and she has absolutely no idea how or why she just caused a four-car accident. Rather than choke her because Nathalie had hit her head and was pretty shaken up, I told granny that she ran a red light. Granny then said some crap about the sun being in her eyes, not being able to see the color of the light, and just pulling out because she thought it was clear. And she said, "Well, this is all my fault." I turned to her and screamed, "No effing way! You're kidding!" At least, I wanted to.
Cops show up, they give granny a ticket for running a red, everyone's insurance info is exchanged, and our car is towed away. The front bumper was smashed to bits, the hood was crumpled, side panels cracked, and our rear bumper lost the battle of wills with the Jeep and was crumpled as well. And that 48-inch flatscreen plasma tv in the trunk will need to be replaced. But at least we weren't seriously injured, and we could walk home. Because we were RIGHT ACROSS THE GODDAM STREET FROM OUR APARTMENT! Ugh.
I took Nathalie to urgent care to get checked out. The movie "Beaches" was playing on the tv in the waiting room, and for some reason I found that kinda funny. Nathalie checked out okay, she's still pretty sore and will be even more tomorrow, but she's a trooper and should be fine. I'm a little sore, but I can't tell if it's from the wreck or just from being totally out of shape and stressed.
We don't know if the Saturn will be declared totaled, or if there will just be thousands of dollars of damage. Either way, it's a headache neither one of us needs. And at the end of the day, I still smell like coffee.

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