Archive for January, 2009|Monthly archive page

Notre Dame cannot hang in the Big East

Luke Harangody is from Schererville, which makes him Your Boy. but really, you’re gonna need more than Harangody to compete in that hoops league. they were hanging with Pitt in the first half, and now they’re just getting smoked. too many good teams. too many tall trees.

okay. Michael Steele is gonna lead the RNC.
he’s a moderate Republican from Maryland. he lives in PG. and he’s, oh yes, he’s black.

during the 2004 Senate election in Illinois, Barack Obama was originally pitted against one Jack Ryan, the winner of the state’s GOP primary. before he could even get going, though, Ryan’s campaign was derailed after the Chicago Tribune sued and the records of his divorce trial were made public. see, Ryan the politician was married to Jeri Ryan the actress and her amazing rack. and in those records, Jeri claimed Jack took her to sex clubs and tried to get her to bang him in public, and the like. this is the kind of shit that will not do if you’re a Republican Senate candidate. you’re the morality candidate, and everyone knows that people who fuck have loose morals.
so Ryan withdrew in late June, and Obama was left without a major party opponent. the Illinois GOP searched far and wide, looking for the most qualified possible candidate, and came up with, yes, Alan Keyes.
Alan Keyes was, or is, many things. one thing he is — he’s crazy. also, very conservative. another thing? he’s black. and he wasn’t even a goddamned resident of Illinois before the Republicans came for him, grasping at straws, in a bald-faced attempt to pick up on the minority vote. they literally went 500 miles outside the borders of their state to dig him up; Keyes was a resident of Maryland, making him during the 2004 election the definition of a carpetbagger.
and unsurprisingly, Obama beat him by about 40 points.

right now, the Republican Party is weak. they’re in exile, they’ve gotten stomped the last couple of elections, and they’re trying to redefine themselves. to be honest, I was happy to watch them flail about for another cycle or two, the fuckers. it’s not like they don’t deserve it. assholes. ran the fucking country into the ground in astounding fashion. and they may continue to flail about, but I think Steele’s a good pick. while he’s not representative of its membership or its support — demographically, the GOP remains firmly the Party of the Cracker — from what I’ve read, he isn’t from the fringe, and he didn’t come up under the Bushes. he appears to be a clean break from the party leadership of the last eight years. which is precisely what they need.
so, with that being said: is Steele a carpetbagger? are the Republicans just half-assing a new wave of inclusiveness? will their platforms stop being blatantly nativist, divisive? or, is this a clean break? do they see the shifts in the electorate, the tides changing, and will they adjust accordingly?
cause if they do, you know, in the long run, that’s good for all of us. but electing a black guy RNC chair doesn’t it do it by itself. we’ll see. it’ll be hard to drag Republicans away from blaming migrant labor for every possible malady, no matter how politically shortsighted it is to piss off Hispanics with border fences and anti-immigration policies.


buy American

Blagojevich is on cable news, speaking in Springfield.
this motherfucker has no shame. he’s been talking for about half an hour straight, and CNN’s been there for every minute of it. annd, let’s check: yes. same with MSNBC and Fox.
you have to give it to him. he may be widely despised, but Blagojevich doesn’t seem to care. his situation is so far-removed from my reality that it’s hard to relate, but I don’t think I would have the stones to try something like this, this PR onslaught. appearing on the View and the Today show, Larry King and the like. when he’s done talking here, and god knows when that may be, the Ill. Senate (or is it the House, I don’t know) is probably going to vote unanimously to impeach him, but it won’t be because of a lack of effort on his part.
Blagojevich is talking about his “life experiences” and “the American dream.” he’s talking about a first-generation working woman he knows from the South side, or somesuch bullshit, how his “policies have been about trying to help families like those.” right.
he’s a scrapper. and a turd. but it’s kind of hard to dislike the guy. at some point in the last six weeks, he said to himself, “fuck it. so I’m a pariah. I’m going out swinging.” I can at least acknowledge that, if not respect it.
he has said: “imagine how you’d feel if the presumption of innocence that every American is entitled to was completely wiped out by ‘sensationalization’ in the media.”
“I have done nothing wrong.”
he wants to call witnesses to the impeachment proceedings.
“I cannot possibly admit to something I didn’t do.”
“all the conversations, warts in all, ought to be heard (he’s talking about his ‘fucking golden’ conversations on the Fitzgerald tapes). this isn’t Nixon and Watergate. I want it all heard so I can clear my name and we can get back to things that matter most.”
game on, I say. political theater at its finest. he’s done speaking. the chamber is silent, no one claps.

what else.
this was on the front page of the Post today. ‘Buy American’ rider sparks trade debate.
it was introduced to the massive spending bill Obama got through the House on a strictly party line vote, and was sponsored by your boy Visclosky (D-Merrillville). it calls for trade barriers to ensure that  the infrastructure projects included in the stimulus package be supplied by/constructed with domestic materials. the EU trade commission is freaking out, as is the US Chamber of Commerce. “it’s not fair trade!” they say. how will Caterpillar sell earth movers to Asia if they face retaliatory trade measures!?
that may be. and I’m no student of market history. but the current system has left us with maquiladoras, a wasteland in Detroit, and more cheap plastic Chinese shit than Wal-Mart could ever hope to sell. and if you’ve ever seen the barren industrial landscape of northwest Indiana, you’d know where Visclosky’s coming from.

okay. gotta get a shower, gotta go to work.

weak way to spend a day off

tomorrow, I need to:
get to a dry cleaner’s.
go the gym.
buy groceries.
update my resume.
clean out the truck.
watch the Duke/Wake Forest game.
and do some laundry.
while making cookies.

but  I wouldn’t bet on me getting half of this done. I’ll sleep ’til 11 am, cartoons will be on, and then it will be all down hill from there.

I actually did most of these things today. you got something to say to that, Mike, you degenerate?

more books

I turned down a job in Indianapolis this afternoon. and while the decision was eventful, I don’t very much feel like detailing it.

this wouldn’t have happened a few years ago. and that, that’s gotta be growth. so, I’ll just say that my feelings are mixed and work kind of sucked today.

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I wrote this in parts

alright, the inauguration.


I didn’t have any trouble getting up to DC. made great time, listened to a lot of ‘Sticky Fingers’ and Neil Young. and I beat the road closures by a couple of hours.
ended up staying at brother’s on the floor. sat up too late with one of my cousins, who drove out from Detroit with his family to be there, and then I slept for about seven hours.
it worked out that I was able to go to an inauguration party with Va in the office suite of a friend of their’s. he works for a wetlands conservation society, it seems, and the office is along Pennsylvania Avenue.
this was legit. lots of food, and booze. and a giant game of ‘Duck Hunt’ on a projection screen.
getting there was a bitch. an elderly woman fell in front of the tracks on the Red line, so that screwed public transportation. the only way to get there was to walk. twenty city blocks isn’t bad when it’s me and Va, but the 3-year-old doesn’t handle it as well. the 3-year-old needs to be carried. like carrying a 30-lb. sack of potatoes that actively doesn’t want you to carry it.
we almost turned back. halfway there, and it was cold, and spud wasn’t cooperating, and Va told me, “this isn’t working. go on ahead.” and I mumbled something about how she’d regret missing it. some things are worth toughing out, etc. I didn’t think that I had said anything that would stick, anything of substance, but she told me later that it helped, and I was proud of that.
but I’m not going to lie and say that I saw the worst of the crowds, because I didn’t. my brother was in the middle of that stink for half a week, running on adrenaline and high-fructose corn syrup from a trailer in front of the National Portrait Gallery (I think). but all of that shit you saw on television, the Mall swarmed over, even from outer space, I missed it. fine by me. see, where I was, there was a bottomless tray of meatballs.


out of the office window I couldn’t really see shit; I think that’s the presidential limo there to the right. the view wasn’t even that great, but it really didn’t matter. I got the gist from being there. this parade, it was a little overdone, and not well-planned. I mean, there was easily another hour and a half of marching bands after Obama and his wife made the slow crawl from the Capitol to the White House. and no one to pay attention to them, everyone had cleared out. should’ve made Obama go last, make everyone work for a glimpse of this new American royalty.


DC was cold as a motherfucker on Tuesday.


here’s your boy and his girlfriend. they seem to have a lot invested in Obama’s campaign and his election, or as much as a concerned citizen could hope to have. they did the door-to-door, stuffed envelopes kind of thing running up to November. my excuse for political apathy is holding a job within the sphere of journalism, but I doubt that I’d be active even without my comfortable ball and chain. 
for people like his girlfriend and your boy, though, Tuesday was a triumph, the culmination of the repudiation to the last eight years of  asshole. on election night, Spencer said — and I remember, this, he said, “I don’t know how to feel. someone  I voted for actually won.” probably felt pretty good.

that evening, I met another cousin — so many cousins — at a bar in Adams Morgan. apparently, it’s the place where my brother first met Va. of all the gin joints in all the towns in the world …
actually, I remember the first time I met  her msyelf. it was in Adams Morgan, too, in that tiny park where Columbia meets 18th. funny how those moments stick with you. I remember where I was when my brother asked me to be the best man in his wedding. it was over the phone. I was in Valparaiso, in my grandmother’s room at the end of the house, and he was in a checkout line at a grocery store in Washington. it was warm out, because it was August and the best kind of summer, and our conversation was very matter-of-fact.
‘yo. what do you think about being the best man at the wedding?’
my cousin and I caught up, as much as you can over a couple of hours and beer. Court is legit. she works as an editor, too, and she’s funny, and … I’m fucking up by not seeing enough of my family from Pennsylvania. what’s Philly from here, five hours? okay. that’s a drive. but an accomplishable one.

me and  Court.




I have decided to try to get into DC for the inauguration.

this may not be wise. it is last-minute and ill-timed. I secured a bed with Your Man in law school limbo. but I’ll have to get into the city before they close the bridges and highways. and most importantly, find somewhere to leave my truck. 
but it’ll be worth it. it’s worth it, to not necessarily see the inauguration, but for the experience. there’s a legitmate buzz happening, and I want to witness that. and I’ll capture the long, drawn-out moment in pictures.
and I’ll be a few days at it, so hold your horses.

offer me something

got a college basketball game on.
actually, no, there’s two. UConn at St. John’s, five minutes left, up a dozen. the other, Purdue at Northwestern, down five with four minutes to go. both of these games are indictive of the leagues they play in.
Purdue and Northwestern have been beating the shit out each other. falling on top of each other, missing lay-ups, playing full-court press the entire time. and it’s close. and even though Purdue is ranked, that doesn’t mean they can’t and won’t lose a game to anyone at any time. they could lose this game, to Northwestern, a team that considers it a good year if they lose close games. such is the Big Ten. note: a Valparaiso kid plays for Purdue. of course he does.
on the other channel: St John’s is what Connecticut would look like if it started its bench and it had a shitty day. a bunch of players who are capable of pulling off an alleyoop dunk, but usually screw it up. point in case: one of the St John’s guards got past his man and went for a layup. and it looked good, too! until Thabeet blocked it so damn hard that it bounced out past half court, and grinned while he took the foul. this style of play, on the other hand, is the Big East.
and now, the Virginia/UNC game is on. this is big news around here, simply because UNC is ranked #5 or 6. no one really expects UVa to win, but it’s being nationally televised, and it’s gonna be one of the only interesting games UVa plays in; they suck. the sports desk at the paper is going all out for this. they have an extra hour and a half past deadline to get it in.
also: Louis Farrakhan’s grandson plays for Virginia. and I don’t know if that makes me like them more or less.

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merry xmas

merry Christmas from Indiana:


it’s been a long day

today has been a long day.

I woke up before dawn in Indiana, caught a flight out of Chicago, got off the plane and worked for eight hours. and now, I’m at home  again trying to finally end this fucking editing tip once and for all, but I can’t really focus. it’s because I’m exhausted, and ‘Black Dog’ starring Patrick Swayze and Meat Loaf is on. ‘Black Dog’ is about an ex-con who takes one last job on the “Georgia run” because his dimwit wife didn’t bother to pay the mortgage while he was in the can. turns out the truck is full fo street sweepers and Meat Loaf will stop at nothing to get them. so, viola, it’s an action movie about truckin’ and shitty honky tonk music. and for that film connoisseur out there, it also features Charles S. Dutton (of ‘Alien 3’ and ‘Rudy’ fame) and the guy who played God in that movie starring Brendan Frasier about a dork who sells his soul to the devil, who is in turn played by Elizabeth Hurley. who is, let’s be honest, pretty goddamned hot. and it has nothing to do with the accent.
but see, what I’m really trying to say is, ‘Black Dog’ sucks. and Swayze shouldn’t be allowed to do any more movies, unless they’re scene-by-scene recreations of ‘Roadhouse’. this should be for the rest of his life, until he’s too weak to stand. 
‘Black Dog’ has put me in a sour mood. I want to go to bed. and I don’t want to do this again tomorrow. but I think I’m not gonna win that fight.
but to be real, all of this isn’t really fair; ‘The Outsiders’ was alright. and Swayze was in that. stay gold, Ponyboy!

Indiana was a trip. I’ll give it more time at a later date.

“everything in this house ends up bleached”

will Thursday go swimmingly?

it is the end of my Wednesday, early Thursday morning. 
a quick rundown of the situation: Grandma’s digging out her coin box underneath the dresser next to me. I just ate a ham sandwich. and it’s fucking freezing outside tonight. Orthodox xmas has come and gone, but I’ll get on that at some other time. because there’s movement in the trees: charlie’s testing the perimeter.
tomorrow is shaping up to be the kind of day I actively try to avoid when on ‘vacation.’ my brother, Va and kid are due at the airport by 10:30 am, and my sister needs to be moved down to school in Bloomington.
mom insists on going to Bloomington, even though it will require heavy lifting, seven hours in a truck, and a long day before she goes to sleep and then to work early Friday morning. but she doesn’t seem to care, and no one is listening to me, so now instead of me getting back around 8 or 9 pm and seeing friends, I’m not going to see them at all tomorrow evening. I’ll be driving all the fuck over the place. first into Chicago and back without turning off the car, and then four hours south to the university. and when I get back here, if I’m lucky and not ready to pass out, I’ll be able to start the pair of editing files I got in my email ten minutes ago. 

I am holding out hope that someone listens to goddamn reason and I end up just driving to Bloomington tomorrow. maybe Thursday will go swimmingly, but I doubt that will happen. the core of my family is here, and after five days mass psychosis is setting in. don’t worry; I will update everyone soon,  so hold on to your shit. 


Thursday was great.