Archive for February, 2010|Monthly archive page

begin a coffee habit

the ‘Doctor Who’ theme from the mid-seventies is the shit. and so is the television show, if it’s all this ridiculous.
just pointing that out, is all. I got a lot to do tomorrow, and I don’t even know which what to do first. if that makes any sense.

something lighted upon my neck …

… as my dumb ass stared at the television, so I swatted at it.
it turned out to be a stink bug, and now I smell. bad.

this should be an interesting week in politics. health care showdown! wealthy, Beltway, Georgetown-type liberal EJ Dionne, run with it!

dick move

I like “The Price is Right.”
yes, it’s true. I find the show that celebrates consumer culture like no other to be … amusing.
and when you watch a game show while you sit around your apartment sending out resumes five days a week, you notice shit. you notice shit, man. things about the game, and how it’s played.
the contestants on “The Price is Right” are all audience members. I imagine the producers throw everyone’s name in a pot and pull them out as the game progresses, or something like that; I’m assuming that being selected to bid is a fair process.
if your dumb ass is lucky enough to get called up, you and three other mopes bid on a something like a solid-oak grandfather clock or a flat-screen television for a chance to advance in the game. the person closest to the retail price without going over the top gets called up to play some ridiculous game like Plinko or Pin the Pasty on the Hooker.
but the real viciousness comes during that first round, where the four contestants who are lucky enough to get a shot to bid on that grandfather clock through absolutely no effort of their own sometimes turn around and fuck each other over, but good.
so say you bid $930 … shit, it just happened again. I’m watching the show right now, and this move just got pulled.
alright, say you bid $927 for a chance to get up on stage with Drew Carey, like the 19-year-old girl just did. well, the heavyset blonde lady who gets to bid next decides she’s gonna bid $928 — leaving the first girl literally no chance to win. and then, because the plus-sized model didn’t win on this go-around, she has to stand next to the woman she just effectively torpedoed while the winning contestant flails about trying to price a Chevrolet Cobalt or score a trip to Sweden. she is left there until the next opening round comes around again. that’s like, 10 minutes of agonizing taping, while everyone in the room is aware of the asshole move you just pulled.
whatever happened to empathy for your fellow man? to good will? whatever happened to it, I say?

pet peeve

tough shit, unions. the Democrats were way too busy fucking up health care reform to pay attention to you, despite the fact that you basically delivered Pennsylvania to Obama and got him elected. and now you get nothing!

ps: Kansas guard Xavier Henry pronounces that “zah-vee-yaay.” no, not Xavier. “zah-vee-yaay.” watch Doug Gottlieb say this on ESPN, but be careful that your head doesn’t explode.

the overlook

I am at a hotel on the edge of Charlottesville.
no. I am not on the lam. me and Central Virginia are in the middle of one of the snowstorm of the infant decade. one of those storms that are of interest to no one unless they’re affected by it, I understand, but I am. they are calling for up to 30 inches. it hasn’t stopped coming down for about 18 hours, now, and it’s supposed to go for 18 more. and I worked today, and it’s probably not safe to drive home tonight. so I’m at the Doubletree on the company dime. it’s the kind of hotel that gives you a warm, chocolate chip cookie when you check in.
I finished mine before I got to my room. 

so now it’s 10 pm, and it’s snowing like it has something to prove, and the assistant sports editor is on his phone, sitting on the bed next to me. we have killed a six-pack of Leinenkugel. I am sure that is not how you spell the name of this beer, but you know which one I’m talking about.
it’s been a long day. it was snowing, ever so slightly, when I drove up to work at 10 am. and it was starting to stick at 11:30 when I went to 7-Eleven for coffee. and then, by 4:30 pm when everyone else had gone home except myself and one other, the power started cutting in and out, and the snow blotted out the sky lights. we had to restart the computers a half-dozen times, and then everything finally failed at 6:15. pitch black.
as far as I can tell they aren’t plowing the roads around here very well — or at all between here and my home in the city, we got a ride over here from some guy from circulation who has access to a huge, all-wheel-drive pick up. he was a little offsetting at first — like a rural extra in an independent horror movie — and he let the truck coast down a snowy hill hands-free while he looked for his ringing cell phone. but he got us here, and offered to pick us up tomorrow. he says he’s not going home tonight, that he’ll be at the paper all evening. I hope he isn’t. like I said, the power is out. but that didn’t seem to phase him.
after checking in my boss and I had dinner at the buffet downstairs, where for 45 minutes we talked about his in-laws and that parasite that makes crazy shut-ins want to own a million cats, and I paid $5 for a Yuengling. see, this is a nice hotel. it’s got wireless internet, flat-screen TVs in the rooms, a restaurant and a small, kidney-shaped pool. I’m gonna try to get in that before I raid the continental breakfast in the morning. I brought my swimming trunks. because, oh yes, I planned ahead.

but still, it doesn’t have everything. I wish I had Doubletree letterhead to write this on, and I searched the room but couldn’t find any. I will have to store this on the WordPress until further notice. maybe I’ll publish it, or maybe not. maybe it is something for only you to read. I wish you were here right now; I’ve got the heat on blast, and there’s more pillows on this bed than I need. you would like it here.
we could make a weekend out of it, if only you could get through the snow, which is coming down in buckets through the window to my left.
but because I can’t, I will have to settle with simply seeing you soon. but that’s okay, I can handle that. I may walk through this blizzard along tire tracks to get back to you. and in fact, I’m kind of looking forward to it. so please answer the door when I knock.

the senate

I’m not gonna waste the time and energy to try and present this as something I noticed myself; it’s not like I spend every waking moment parsing the actions and statements of political leadership in Washington. I do not have the constitution for it.
but I pay a little attention to what’s going on in the politics and such, and considering the storyline of the week in DC — successfully suggested and promoted by Obama during last week’s State of the Union address — has been the seeming unwillingness of congressional Republicans to compromise or support anything put forth by the president … well, I read something timely today on cup of coffee No. 3.
the Washington Post editorial writer Fred Hiatt used his column today to make note of the fact that Senate Minority Leader and Kentuckian Mitch McConnell is, in fact, a fuckhead. it’s true! let’s read some Hiatt!

It’s impossible to avoid the conclusion that the only thing that changed since May is the political usefulness of the proposal to McConnell’s partisan goals.

what the hell is it Hiatt’s talking about?
sit down, and I’ll explain! sit! if you’re hungry, get a snack. I’ve got some unsalted peanuts here. Aarti thinks they taste “like chalk,” but she’s crazy: these are delicious.
okay, see, what McConnell did was he supported a bipartisan commission that would make binding recomendations to congress on ways to reduce government spending and increase revenue. because the nation is gonna spend, you know, something like a couple of trillion of dollars this year that we don’t really have. this was an idea put forward by Kent Conrad, who is a Democrat from the cold and boring state of North Dakota; and Judd Gregg, who is really named Judd and actually a goddamn senator, and from New Hampshire.
I had no idea they were thinking about doing this. I really had no idea. did you know that legislators were suggesting such a thing? I think that’s a great idea. and I’m really not kidding.
anyway, Obama kinda got around to endorsing this idea recently, which means that the administration didn’t really like it very much, and it came to vote and would have had sixty votes, which is required to get an amendment like this through the Senate, I think. but then seven Republican senators reversed course, voted against it and it lost.
why would they do this? 
because, according to McConnell, they want a committee that only makes suggestions on spending cuts, not tax increases. no tax increases, at all. because, duh, Republicans hate tax increases no matter what! no matter if your dog is on fucking fire. if your dog is on fire, and the only way to put it out is to raise taxes, your dog is fucked. because Republicans are not voting for that shit.  
but the real reason these seven Republican senators changed their minds on this bill, I suspect, is they figure it’s more politically valuable to them to kick the adminsitration in the balls again.
I will set the stage: this vote came up last week, and Mitch McConnell and a bunch of other old white senators from places like Oklahoma and Texas and Arizona got together and were like, ‘what do you think, you wanna vote for it?’ and then one of them said, ‘eh, fuck it.’ and that was that. 
politics seem to be a very self-serving business sometimes, and this, I think, is a pretty good example of that. because they don’t care if the federal government continues to stall, or that the market will continue to dance around holding its dick while it waits for Washington to just do something. they’d rather stick it to Obama. again. and again. and again. like lions taking down an elephant, they hope to run his ass into the ground, beat him in an election, and replace him with someone like Mitt Romney or Bob McDonell who will then make proposals that are inevitably more dumb than what the Democrats shit out and fail to pass on the Capitol floor.

and there it is. I just laid out the next seven years of American politics.