Archive for February, 2011|Monthly archive page

our labrador is a genius

update: you know, it’s pretty ridiculous on my part that I consistently put news links up on the blog, and try to think of witty things to say about them. nobody never, ever, ever clicks on these links. I know this because WordPress has a function that allows you to see how many visitors you get a day — which I check incessantly in a constant drive for affirmation — and the function also tallies which links get an ol’ clickeroo. and they never get any clickeroos.
how does the saying go? “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

here is a link to a commentary on the Atlantic website — by a guy who I think was charged in the whole Scooter Libby/Valerie Plame affair — that explains in broad, dumb terms for the casual fan as to why the Wisconsin public union shit storm is a big deal.

here is a picture of Lucy looking into the window of her soul, courtesy of Mar:

and here is a song by your man Delroy Wilson:

who needs bargaining rights anyway?

“The way I stand is that there has to be counterbalance to the overwhelming power businesses have over our lives.  Our jobs dictate so much about our lives based on working conditions, pay and benefits that if workers aren’t able to come together and push back, we will be worse off, and I think the data bolsters that reality by showing the monetary benefits of union membership.  Conservatives are really good at convincing people to be envious and angry when someone whose not them has a better deal.  Look at what the public service unions are dealing with now.  Hopefully, people will start realizing that they’re being duped and instead they should be pissed off that they don’t get adequate wages and benefits, and not get pissed at people who do. It should not be a race to the fucking bottom.”

— Mean Mister Mike

you know, it’s worth noting that soon — when unions are even in bigger decline after “pro-growth” Republicans continue to tear chunks out of working people for a couple of years — the Democratic majority may wish it had thrown a reliable base the occasional bone before it dried up and blew away.

“I never understood where the satisfaction is when you’re missing the pleasure of conquest.”

–the endlessly fascinating Silvio Berlusconi in 2009

we had a big Saturday

every once in a while I find it important to pay credence to the banner across the top of the blog. it’s not like doing so is grounding, or steeped in tradition. no. it’s rather that Wesley Willis wrote a lot of entertaining albeit monotonous music — much in the same way I’d fancy my writing style — and that Dave Weinberg bought a digital camera the summer after we graduated from high school and we got our picture taken with him. and thanks to the wonders of social media, I now have a blurry copy of that picture.

mm-hmm. happy early Valentine’s Day. click on that there picture to hear “Rock and Roll McDonalds.”

rock over London. rock on, Chicago. Wheaties: Breakfast of champions.

get to work

Sen. Jim Webb announced yesterday that he’s not going to seek re-election in 2012. according to this article that quotes political sage Larry Sabato, his decision is not surprising. but in case you missed this news from a few weeks ago, guess who is running for the seat?



if anyone wants to take bets on how many time George Allen is gonna bust out the ol’ pigskin during his campaign to mire Virginia in another six years of dumb, I’d be interested to hear your proposal. I’d say he strikes a pose with a football at least two hundred times. at least.

mixed nuts

an interesting article Sunday in the New York Times about one of the catalysts for the Egyptian protests: the circumstances of the beating death of an Alexandria businessman by police officers last June. it would seem those circumstances are quite murky; they kicked this poor son of a bitch until he died because he apparently had made a cell-phone video documenting police corruption.
as far as breaking news goes, of course, this is old hat. but what’s interesting, again and again, is that what fomented the outrage was goddamn Facebook.
oh yes. Facebook, where college students post pictures documenting their alcohol abuse; the place that every niche business with a website bombards you with targeted advertising; where you waste time at work and where I make a half-assed attempt to market my blog; the site that Mark Zuckerberg basically invented (or lifted, if you liked “The Social Network”) to help him get laid at Harvard.

we’re all really happy for you, Mark.
anyway, while I get a goddamn email alert everytime somebody farts on my Valparaiso High School Class of 2001 Reunion page, people in countries dominated by authoritarian governments are using social networking sites to organize popular protest movements. they did it last year in Iran. and they’re doing it now a few times over across northern Africa.
I guess we’re just on the far side of the rainbow, and somewhere in the middle, the Obama presidential campaign used social media to beat the shit out of angry old fuck John McCain in 2008. that was a good year.

but I digress. the Packers won the Super Bowl last night, in a game I forced myself to pay poor attention to. it didn’t take much forcing, with terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad Green Bay playing Pittsburgh, the most winning franchise in professional football. in fact, standing there watching the game in front of a massive flat-screen television at a neighborhood party in the suburbs with my dad, I found myself explaining whom I was rooting for.
“maybe the power will go out in the stadium,” I said the first time. but the second chance I had to answer, I launched into a lengthy description of how I wanted the game to be so close that it would have to be decided like Bush v Gore in 2000; by a panel of sequestered judges, and that by relegating it to the courts the decision would take so goddamn long that no one would care after a while, and we would settle for either son of privilege being granted the title.
“for Christ’s sake,” every Man on the Street would say. “just give it to the Packers already. it’s April, and aren’t taxes due?” for, you see, if a victory it had to be, then I wanted a Super Bowl victory devoid of joy.
this is how I told it to one of the 60-year-old ex-Marines that make up my dad’s social circle.
I thought all of this was pretty clever, but alas: it was the wrong audience. I got a lot of “uh, I’m pulling for the Steelers,” in return.
so. all of that goes to show: don’t act like a dick at the Super Bowl party. for, again, the Packers won. and that’s proof enough that all of my moaning and bad humor don’t amount to nothin‘.

and now, enough talk. here’s what you all came here for anyway: titties.

nah, just fooling. but still, some pretty rad fantasy/sci-fi art. click on the picture to see more of it. and don’t worry; no one will know that you secretly enjoy this shit.

I’m pretty awful at this blogging thing

I’m taking an introductory Spanish class at the USDA graduate school. I started last week, and it is muy bien.
not that I can speak Spanish now, or at all; far from it. but the instructor is pretty cool, and I generally think I’m getting something out of it. that’s right, I got my big boy pants on now. I’m liable to do something drastic.

at work today and yesterday, I filled the down-time with live-streaming al-Jazeera coverage of the Egyptian protests. it’s getting pretty ugly; I can’t say I’d enjoy getting ridden down by an asshole on a camel wielding a baton. but no matter. there will be none of that “today we are all Egyptians” bullshit, as it seems that America can’t get its shit together to determine whether or not we support this (we should). the White House is decidedly … lukewarm, and Fox News thinks we’re witnessing the birth of a caliphate, which seems to be a strange position to take, but they’re pretty looney tunes over there anyway. so fuck it. until I can focus long enough to type out a coherent paragraph you will have to make do with the best video version of “Funky Kingston” you’ve ever seen: