Friday, October 05, 2007

So this is California....

I get it, you're laid back.
So much so that you don't answer my emails for over a week when I reply to your roommates wanted ads. I start sending out emails in the middle of July, and still get replies a week into August saying that you're looking for someone to move in on the first. I'm flattered that you think I could pull that off, but really I'm not that talented.

I get it, you're progressive.
You invite me over for dinner, and its amazing. Tempeh tacos... mmmm.....
Sure the family style eating arrangements isn't really my thing, but everybody seems normal. That is, until the point where we start talking politics. Oh, you want Denis Kucinich to win the nomination? Don't get me wrong, anyone who looks like him and can land a wife who is half his age, a foot taller and drop dead gorgeous has some serious juju. But the Republicans would have to scrape deep into the bottom of the barrel to come up with someone who couldn't beat a pantheistic vegan midget.
Be serious people.

I get it, you think outside the box.
I knew that when I read your ad saying that you were a spiritual relationship councilor. I googled your email address and found out that you help women manifest their true love from the universe. But I'm an open minded guy and whatever you can do to turn a buck is between you and your clients. Although I have to admit that the fact that, as a spiritual relationship guide, you said that this town is full of flakes made me a little nervous.

But then the subject turned to 9/11 being an inside job. You saw a video about it. On the internet. Put together by a bunch of college students calling themselves "researchers". Set to bad techno music.

I admit that I realized that I was being a bad guest shooting down your 'evidence' that there was a massive government conspiracy behind 9/11. But you were really really wrong. Its not even that I think what you were saying isn't true - but even if it were true you don't have any evidence to back it up. "As someone who has no background in structural engineering, that doesn't fit with my understanding of structural engineering." is pretty thin.

Anyway, the thing is that I'm a nerd about epistemology, among other things. I'm interested in how we make judgments based on incomplete, unreliable and contradictory information. So I tend to pick conspiratorial ramblings - be they about 9/11 'truth' or Iraqi WMD - apart as much as possible.

And then a few days later I got the email telling me that you didn't want me to move in with you. You didn't want me as a roommate because I didn't think that 9/11 was an inside job. I had to reread it a couple of times...

I thought that you were open minded. In fact I read that in your ad - you were open minded and seeking people who were similarly open minded.

You consoled me by telling me that you were sure I could find someone to live with who agreed with me that 9/11 wasn't a government conspiracy. I wanted to write you back to tell you that I am, in fact, capable of relating to people who I don't agree with. It is, as I understand it, the most basic level of maturity.

So this is California? And these are the people that I will be surrounding myself with for the next three years? Thanks for the tacos, you people have issues.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Historical Perspective

The possibility that even some of the justices The Boss himself had appointed to the court might not cheerfully endorse a concept of presidential immunity that mocked both the US Constitution and the Magna Carta had apparently been considered for a moment and then written off as too far-fetched an crazy even to worry about by all of Nixon’s personal strategists.

It is still a little difficult to believe, in fact, that some of the closes advisors to the president of a constitutional democracy in the year nineteen hundred and seventy-four might actually expect the highest court in any constitutional democracy to crank up what is probably the most thoroughly discredited precedent in the history of Anglo-American jurisprudence- the “divine right of kings” - in order to legalize the notion that a President of the United States, or any other would be democracy is beyond “the law.”

That Nixon and his personal Gestapo actually believed this could happen is a measure of the insanity quotient of the people Nixon took down in the bunker with him when he knew the time had come to get serious.

Hunter S. Thompson, “The Scum Also Rises”

Reading Thompson always reminds me of Bush, for obvious reasons. But I always get left feeling like I'm living in more cynical times. He's got an abiding faith in America that, although filtered through his twisted mind, seems rather optimistic right now. Does Bush's invocation of the divine right of kings - dressed up in a version of seperation of powers so absurd that an eighth grade civics class could tear it apart- seem so far fetched these days? I'm not so sure.

It certainly didn't seem far fetched on Hardball, where Chris Matthews said that Bush would probably win. Matthews thinks that Bush is right to prevent Rove from testifying under oath, because he'd definitely lie and wouldn't want to get caught. How is it that someone that is a prominent political commentator can say with a strait face that the president has a constitutional interest in protecting the right of his advisors to lie to congress?

This is rapidly heading towards a constitutional crisis, with the President openly threatening to defy a subpoena and bring it to the courts. And why? Because it is our misfortune as a nation to have a president that is a caricature of a spoiled rich kid who’s parents never set limits while he was growing up. Beneath the rhetoric of “show trials” and “partisan witch hunts” is a child with a sense of entitlement that is as limitless as his sense of dignity is tenuous threatening to hold his breath until he turns blue.

And the sad thing is that the Supreme Court might actually go for it. Why wouldn’t they? After anointing him President, would the conservative majority on the court suddenly find their respect for the rule of law? Not likely.

And it is useful to recall that this isn’t even one of the big scandals. This isn’t cooking intelligence on Iraq, ignoring warnings about 9/11, illegally spying on everyone in America, torture, kidnaping, meeting with a lobbyist who’s since been convicted of taking money for access to Republican power brokers. This isn’t even one of the colorful ones, like the fact that a gay prostitute managed to get access to the White House under an assumed name. This is simply the first rock that the congress kicked over. Can you imagine what would come out if Congress really found their balls and started looking into darker territory?

Monday, February 26, 2007

Why do I read the NY Times Anyway....
Re: Mosh Pit Meets Sandbox
Dear Mr. Brooks.

Your latest column on the perils of parents in Park Slope dressing their children in ways that you don't find appropriate reminds me of a joke I once heard.

A father is in the park watching his kids as they run around playing in the dirt. An old man on the bench yells at him, "Hey, do you really think you should be letting your kids run around like a bunch of animals. You should try to instill a little discipline in them, otherwise where do you think they'll end up in life?"
The father turns to him, "I don't know, my parents raised five children and they've all been very successful."
"Oh, and did they let you all run around wildly and do whatever they pleased."
"Well, more importantly, they us them a valuable lesson."
"Which was?"
"To mind your own fucking business."



Saturday, February 17, 2007

They Write Back

I got a reply from my emial to the defense department on how to best combat people emboldening our enemies , but frankly I'm a little disappointed. If the Secretary of Defense has the authority to arbitrarily decide that people are enemies of the state, haul them off to secret prisons and torture them, why isn't he more enthusiastic to use it? And why can't I get in on the racket?

This is the sort of shit that really emboldens the enemy.

Internal Enemies in the Global War on Terror.

Discussion Thread
Response (Directorate for Public Inquiry and Analysis) - 02/15/2007 12:14 PM
Dear Mr. Jones,

We thank you for your interest in the information provided on the Defense website. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support to the U.S. Armed Forces.

FBI operations investigates terrorist and foreign intelligence threats and enforce the criminal laws of the United States."

Please report any suspected terrorist activity directly to the FBI:

We hope this information is helpful. Please continue to visit the Defense website for the latest information on the Global War on Terrorism.


Auto-Response - 01/30/2007 10:07 PM
Title: Global War on Terrorism - First 100 Days

Thursday, February 15, 2007


I was unemployed when last we invaded a middle eastern country starting with "Ira", so I was able to watch 24/7 news coverage of it for days at a time. I found that, as pornography, it was pretty good. I was happy when I came across Watching Babylon: The War in Iraq and Global Visual Culture by Nicholas Mirzoeff, he made the same connection that was so obvious to me, between war coverage and pornography (He relied on Foucault and Lacan references to make his point, whereas I backed my argument up more with indecipherable profanity). All those explosions lighting up my TV screen are glorified cumshots.


And thats why I had no real use for all the commentary. I recall seeing a porn flic in China, which had actually done a pretty good job of translating the "dialogue" and i had to wonder why? Paying attention to that is even less credible than reading Hustler for the articles.

And I take essentially the same attitude towards what passes for reporting.

Somewhere towards the second day of shock and awe I discovered that if I just put the TV on mute and put a selection of Iron Maden and early Black Sabbath in the stereo on shuffle you got exactly the same information content as the "commentary", but it meshed with the visuals so much better.

Yes, hair metal is to war porn as fuzz guitar funk is to the real thing.

So, that's my question to you. What will your soundtrack to the invasion of Iran be?
my top 5 are:

1. Black Sabbath (first 5 albums)
2. Metallica (through Master of Puppets)
3. Iron Maden
4. Atari Teenage Riot
5. Zen Guerilla (Tom Jones singing for a cross between AC/DC and MC5- nuff said)


If it looks like a duck

From today's New York Times:
"Speaking at a news conference in the East Room of the White House, Mr. Bush dismissed as “preposterous” the contention by some skeptics that the United States was drawing unwarranted conclusions about Iran’s role."

Well, excuse us if we don't take your every word (or, in this case, intelligence report) as gospel, Mr. Weapons of Mass Destruction! Jesus. I wish I had a stunning insight or new observation, or just that it didn't keep astonishing me, but it does: the insane, sociopathic arrogance of these people astonishes me. Still.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


It's 5:30 in the morning and I've barely slept a wink. I think it has something to do with the 12 ounce hunk of medium rare cow I ate last night at the steakhouse to celebrate my mother's birthday. I'm not a vegetarian of any sort, but it has been a long time since I've put that much animal in my belly. I thought I would sleep like a baby with all that meat in my stomach, but I guess that fucker still had some life in it, or maybe all of the hormones and steroids they inject in cows wasn't completely cooked out and I'm pumped up on a steroid steak. Maybe I should go to the gym and try to get ripped before it wears off.

Besides the animal inside me, I've also got a lot of anxiety centered around finding a job and paying my bills now that I've broken away from my government job.

I spent a lot of my day yesterday frantically trying to cram some business Chinese for a telephone interview later today. I'm excited about any job that will give me a chance to get back to China for a quick visit.

Other than my own problems, I've got no comment about the world at large.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

In Which I feel Vulnerable

The building that I work in is an odd confluence of widely different populations. Its something that I notice most often in the elevators. There is an organization that works with severely mentally and developmentally handicapped people, the board of elections, and my organization - which works with ex-offenders. I will frequently find myself staring my day sandwiched between thugs, bureaucrats and midget retards wondering exactly where I’m going in life, and how I got there.
Some of the developmentally disabled, the aforementioned dwarfs, are short with disproportionally large heads that make them look vaguely demonic. Some staff member made the same connection one Halloween and dressed them up as devils.
They will often square off with you in the elevator, giving you an intense but vacant glare while grunting aggressively. I live in horror of the day a client of ours freshly released from Rikers takes offense with that and attacks.
I ran into one of them in the bathroom yesterday. I had to pee really bad, so while I did notice that the stall to the toilet was open, with someone in it I ignored it and went to the urinal. I’m not in the practice of looking in other guys general direction while in the bathroom because I’m not gay. (Guy code, in the off chance that there’s a female reading this, you wouldn’t understand). But then I noticed that someone was stinking the place up something fierce, so I looked in the mirror and saw one of the midgets. His minder had left him on the toilet, rocking back and forth grunting.
It looked like he was about to charge me. The thought of having to make like a matador flashed through my mind... I don’t know if I’ve ever felt so vulnerable in my life.
I have since looked through Emily Post for some hints of how to handle such a situation in the future, and found her lacking. I just pissed as fast as I could, flushed and ran out the door...

What’s the moral of that story? I haven’t a god damn clue.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Teenage Lobotomy

My high school had a really top notch shop facility. There were several metal lathes, a forge for casting metal, arc welders, and a full mechanics shop. Most of them sat unused, gathering dust as retards like me fumbled around trying to make a cheese board.

There was a special room, where all of the paint, paint thinner and varnish was kept. It had an exhaust fan, to keep the noxious fumes from building up and exploding. Some kids would sneak in, when Mr. Sutter, the shop teacher, was out of the room. They'd pop off the tops of the cans of varnish, turn off the fan and stew in the fumes.

I don't ever recall hearing of any of those kids getting far in life. I never quite understood the instinct to give yourself a chemical lobotomy. Until now, that is. My roommate put a coat of varnish down on the floor of our apartment last night. I woke up with a chemical taste in my mouth, and not a god damn thought in my mind.

Its actually quite beautiful... I just spent the past hour staring at the wall without a thought at all coming through my mind. This is what enlightenment must feel like without, perhaps, the burning sensation in all of my mucus membranes.

Which is all a long way of saying that, maybe you won't be seeing me for a while. I think I'll be staying in for the near future... too many things to bump in to or knock over in the outside world...

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Occasionally, pimpin' ain't difficult.

I love advertising. Maybe love is too strong a word. I certainly admire and respect it. I view it as an entity...a living organism. It can be benevolent or it can be evil and deceitful.

However, there is no denying that advertising is important. I doubt people realize just how much our economy is driven by advertising dollars. (No, I'm not going to turn this into a statistics lesson and besides, I'm far too lazy to look up such data. Actually, this is simply a long-winded introduction to a rather simple piece of fluff.)

I now take it upon myself to advertise two products that I have come across over the past weekend (and do so free of charge). I'm not sure if my words will reach anyone other then my fellow contributors to this tiny little corner of the intraweb, but I feel the need to get this out there regardless.

First up, and it relates to a previous post are Thursday Plantation Chewing Sticks. These little dandies are nothing more than fancy flavored toothpicks, but damn do they make your mouth feel clean. Plus, they make you look cool, like Sylvester Stallone in "Cobra" or something like that. According to the package, one of the purposes they serve is to relieve the stress associated with quitting smoking. They help to the point that I think they may be more addictive than cigarettes.

Next, to counter balance the health product, comes a new drug of choice. People that know me know that I'm much more of a beer guy then liquor. That may change. I have been introduced to Amaro Fernet Branca, an Italian liqueur of indescribable charm. I suggest mixing it with cola, not only to mellow the strength, but because the mixture gives your drink a Guinness-like body. Upon first sip, you may think that you're drinking medicine...and you wouldn't be far off. It was developed as a medicinal tonic by monks in the 1700's. However, as you further drain your glass, an inexplicable chemical reaction occurs, making your beverage yummier and yummier. I don't know the science behind it, and frankly I don't care. I just know that I really need a drink.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Oh the Things that I know

My God, every time that I decide to take a break from boycotting cable news, something that has greatly inhanced my general level of sanity, I see something that freaks me out to no end. I'm not sure if this is a sudden development, or if its been slowly growing for a while, but CNN was in full War Pimping mode for the invasion of Iran today. "This Week in War" was full of unsupported allegations about Iranian support for the insurgents.

On its face, that is rather bizarre. Most insurgent attacks on the US are carried out by Sunnis. Iran is backing people who are fighting the Sunnis. Why would they also be backing the Sunnis?
Beyond that, its depressing to see the media falling back into their role as regurgitating what the White House says.

As far as their faith in these allegations, the Administration said that they aren't releasing the evidence because they are afraid that it might be wrong. No shit? They are unsure about the evidence that they don't want anyone else to see and disprove it, but they're more than happy to share the judgments that they make based on it.

But beyond that, I just learned from CNN how to make an improvised explosive devise that can take out an Abrahms tank. All I need is some plastic explosives, a metal pipe, some scrap metal and an arc welder. For the love of God, why do they feel the need to broadcast these facts to the world?

Stupid Answers to Snappy Questions

I am always amazed and delighted when I find scientific answers to questions that you never thought would have one. At one point in my life, for example, I had a crippling addiction to 24/7 cable news networks. I would surf through MSNBC, CNN and, when I felt like slumming, FOX, while surfing through blogs and newspapers on the internet. This, for obvious reasons, led me to constantly wonder - mostly to myself, but sometimes aloud- why is everyone so fucking stupid?

I was amazed when I found out the answer. I wasn’t looking, I was trying to figure out cybernetics. I ultimately realized that was futile - I like the theory but cant stomach the math. But reading about it, I learned that communication consists of messages. Messages are not the transference of information between to people. Every message has a certain probability of successfully transferring information. The more information in a message, the lower the probability of it being successfully transmitted.

There you go. Why is there poverty in America, you ask? You could stand on one street corner and give the most nuanced and insightful analysis of why there is poverty in America there is. Stand on a street corner and explain it to people as they pass by. If, on the opposite corner, someone is shouting “People are poor because they’re lazy,” why is going to reach an audience?

Its not that people are stupid, per se. It’s the cost of doing business in a world governed by entropy.

I thought of that last night as I was at a family gathering. My uncle was spouting off some racist nonsense. Not the kind that burns crosses, or yells racial slurs. The more pernicious racism that is acceptable in polite company over casual conversation.

He said that he feels that Black culture is pathological, which is why there is such a high crime rate, such high unemployment, so many unwed mothers irresponsible fathers in the Black community. I asked him what culture was, how it is that culture is created, passed on, and how it causes people to act.

He did answer.

I was about to suggest that culture was a system of symbols, meanings, and practices that are embedded in historically constructed networks of power. I was going to say that we internalize cultural values and meanings into an internalized subjective principle that spontaneously generates culturally meaningful actions. I was going to say that the culture of a given segment of society isn’t a discrete entity among entities placed next to each other. Rather, they exist in a network - each part of which reflects on the nature of the whole. Thus, a pathology in any subculture is merely the expression of the pathology of the wider system.

I decided not to get in to it. Why bring up post-structuralist theory in mixed company?

And besides, I suspect that a lot of casual conversations about why inequality exist isn’t there to find out an acutal answer. It exists to assure us that it is rational, not accidental and certainly not due to any viciousness that is deeply ingrained in society.


Deeper into the Depraved

Listpic is a really neat site - it allows you to browse through craigslis by viewing all of the pictures posted in the given category. So, I decided to look through the personals section, viewing all categories to get a cross section of how people across the spectrum choose to represent themselves to others. That link is by no means work safe, and if you are fragile of mind it will leave you twisted.
It is definitely a data point, and there are clear patterns that jump off the screen. Mostly in the form of cocks. Lots and lots of cocks. Second to pictures of guys showing off their schlongs for the world to see, are guys showing pictures of their muscles. There are more dick picks than pictures of women in any context. Most of the pics of girls showing their tits are actually trannies.
I'm not all that sure that I want to draw any conclusions from it, but I suspect that somewhere in there is contained the battle of the sexes.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Cut the cord

The paperwork has gone through. As of 1 March 2007, I will be discharged from the USAF. Starting next week sometime, I'll be on terminal leave. For people that know me well, you can imagine how relieved I am to be getting out.

On the other hand, I'm a little nervous about not getting to nurse from the government's tit any longer. The pay wasn't bad, and the benefits are rarely matched in the civilian world.

Recently I've begun looking for new jobs. Although I'm not going to apply to these positions, having military experience and a security clearance gives me a leg up for positions in organizations such as the CIA,the DIA or the FBI. Awesome. For reasons far too many to list here, there is no way in hell I will apply to any of these organizations. I'm tired of working with Republicans. I'm also tired of having my personal conduct outside of work regulated.

I'm a little depressed that I'll probably make much less money in whatever job I get outside of the federal sector. Seems like you're either a player, some body's bitch, a military officer, or federal spy. Since I'm not a player, quit my job as an officer, and have rejected other federal agencies, looks like I'm going to be a bitch and hope I can get health insurance.

The government has gotten huge in the last 7 years. I remember back when I first went to China in 1996. Capitalism was taking off but much of the previous structures were still in place, all of the well to do people in the society were members of the Communist Party and/or working for the government. It would be a gross over simplification to compare us to China in the 1990's however, the fact that I know loads of people who want to work for the government and stay in the military because of the job security and benefits is pretty depressing. Their patriotism is fueled by how well Uncle Sam takes care of them. Let's face it, unless you do something illegal you're not going to get fired from the Army right now. You might not get fired even if you do something illegal.

If money, benefits, and job security were my only motivations in seeking employment, I would be crazy to get out of the Air Force now. Instead I would highly consider staying in for 16 more years, and then retire at 46 and begin receiving my pension immediately for the rest of my life and also retain my health care benefits. Then I would get a much more lucrative job in the defense industrial complex for a company like Lockheed Martin or Haliburton which is run by former military members. But I might not even have to stay in the Air Force until retirement. If I would have played my cards better I could probably jump into a lucrative job in the defense industry right now. Unfortunately, they can see through me. They know I'm not really one of them and I probably couldn't get hired. Although six figures would be pretty sweet.

I know my outlook seems a little narrow, and there are lots of ways to make money in America outside of the government and defense industry. My point of view is skewed because my own job experience leaves me most qualified for positions in the government. My perspective is further skewed by the location from which I'm writing: San Antonio, Texas. The backbone of this city's economy is three military bases and the defense contractors located nearby to support them. Furthermore, I don't have the mindset to become an investment banker, real estate mogul, engineer, or dotcom CEO. My point is that it's possible to do better financially with a career in the military than many other industries. I don't think it was like that 10 years ago, but I'm no economist just a job seeker.

Friday, February 02, 2007

I've been had.

I realize that most of the stuff you hear/see on the internet needs to be taken with a HUGE grain of salt, but the bride and her hair problems had me fooled. Good for them. Those are some serious acting chops!

Full Story

Thursday, February 01, 2007

This put a smile on my face.

I'm not sure how much people are aware of the Adult Swim debacle, but I found it quite funny.

Apparently, in an effort to promote one of their top shows, Cartoon Network's adult swim placed LED light displays of characters from "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" in conspicuous locations throughout several cities in the US. Boston didn't take kindly to it.

That's right. Major thoroughfares were shut down and bomb squad technicians brought in to dismantle what is essentially a Lite Brite.

But wait! It gets better! The promotional materials also scared some in the media!
The displays, featuring the Mooninites characters making "obscene gestures" proved too much for some.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

(I Don't Believe In) Global Warming

All right, so it's a blatantly inflammatory title. And not really true. The earth's temperature has fluctuated over the course of its history, and the fact that we're not currently living in an ice age is evidence of global warming. (I believe!) But what people really mean when they say "global warming" or "climate change" is that global warming is our fault, in much the same way that "save the planet" really means "preserve the environment in such a way that sustains human life." It's undeniably a less catchy slogan, but I for one am confident that the planet itself will be around and just fine long after we've been ground down to dust - or melted down to little puddles of sweat.

But does human activity effect the climate? Hey, I don't know, and I bet you don't either. I haven't seen "Inconvenient Truth," admittedly, but so far haven't been confronted with proof that overcomes my main reservation: that our planet's such an insanely complex system that trying to ascribe cause and effect in it, given our current level of understanding, seems almost foolishly arrogant. We can't know, so what's the point? Yes, there's a historical correlation between human industrialization and rising temperatures, but (and I'm gonna write this one large, because I see this mistake all over the place and it's driving me nuts) CORRELATION IS NOT CAUSATION.

The point here is not that everything's fine, and we should continue on as we've been. Clearly a lot is wrong, and I'm in no way trying to debunk the efforts of people struggling to protect the environment (I give in, it's just so much easier to say) or to justify our current state of things. But nothing's wrong that wasn't already before all the climate change hullabaloo. The actual source of the problem is not one of environment, big industry, oil, coal, greenhouse gases, any other pollutants, George Bush, etc., but of ATTITUDE. "Are we causing it" is the wrong question, a thousand times over. Who cares? Who cares if there's even a problem? The need to "prove" global warming before any serious action is taken is an act of misdirection, a stall, while the actual illusion being pushed is the idea that if we're found "not guilty" that our way of life is somehow defensible. We need to consciously choose not to throw a TV (just to pick a single technology almost entirely at random) on the scrapheap at the promise of high-def. Why does there have to be a threat of repercussions, a global punishment for our sins, before Americans even think about getting off their asses and doing something about it?

Misery loves....

I love human suffering. I wallow in it. Revel in it. Before you tune out and write me off as a sadistic bastard, hear me out. (Or read me out as the case may be.)

I don't get off on the physical pain of others. I consider myself a pacifist in reality. Yes, I often imagine what I would like to do to the nimrod who bumped into me on the train, but that's as far as it goes...well that and some mumbling under my breath.

The pain and suffering I'm talking about...the kind I's emotional/mental pain. Don't get me wrong, I hate being the one experiencing said pain, and I don't want my friends/loved ones to experience it, but if I can watch another person reach wit's end, then I'm a happy fella. Perhaps it's the "at least my life isn't as bad as this guy's" mentality.

That said, the video below is pain pornography. Thanks to the magic of youtube, and to the cattiness of much of the female population, these bridesmaids filmed and lauged at the bride to be as she has a complete mental breakdown. THEN THEY POSTED IT ON THE INTERNET FOR THE WORLD TO SEE!!!!! You gotta love the loyalty and friendship displayed herein. Enjoy:

Stupid Human Tricks

Watch someone tow a plain with his penis.
Or don't, if you've got more sense than I do.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Degenerates Say the Darndest Things....

Her: No, we're not the butch/femme kind of lesbian couple that you always think about.
Me: Well, what kind of lesbian couple that I always think about are you?

The Pentagon's Got a Public Affairs Office...

They say the only stupid question is the one you don't ask:

Dear Sirs;

I was interested to hear that it is the official position of Secretary of Defense Gates, and presumably the Department of Defense as a whole, that criticism of the surge in Iraqistan emboldens the enemy. General Petraeus went so far as to say that it gives aid and comfort to the enemy. I couldn’t agree more. I’ve always thought that the very idea of having the actions of the President constrained by both a Congress, and the public at large, projects an image of weakness to our enemies. The ultimate goal of getting rid of the burden that Congress, Free Speech and the democratic system of government established by the Constitution is probably too large an issue to take up in a single email. In the mean time, I would like to know what I can do in my capacity as a private citizen to fight against this second front in the Global War on Terrorism.

I would like to bring your attention to Josh, who sits two cubicles down from me at work. When he first started working at the office, I noticed that he had a “No Blood for Oil” button on his backpack. When I brought this to the attention of Human Resources, they notified that no matter how anti-American his personal views were, they could neither fire him nor drag him out into the alley behind the office to beat some sense in to him. Indeed, they even went so far as to tell me that I would be fired if I attempted to do so on my own initiative.

Since then, he has gone on to verbally disparage our Glorious Leader on an almost daily basis, both criticizing specific policies in Iraqistan, and generally. The other day he even went so far as to call Our Leader a “Needle dicked bug fucker.” I’m not really sure what he even means by that, but I assume that it has negative connotations. He reads pro-terrorist propaganda, such as the New York Times and CNN, while surfing the web on company time, and frequently calls attention to their defeatist propaganda to others. He is, in short, helping to further the Enemy’s objectives on the home front by turning Americans against the war in Iraqistan.

Since he is giving aid and comfort to the enemy, and directly working to undermine our military actions in Iraqistan, I would like to know how it is possible to neutralize the threat that he poses to our way of life. Ideally, I think that he should be designated an Enemy Combatant and sent to Guantanamo. I understand that there are some difficulties involved in this. For example, he is not a Muslim so you will not be able to exert psychological pressure on him by desecrating the Koran or smearing him with menstrual blood. But I’m sure that a steady regime of beatings, sleep depravation, mock executions and other forms of harsh treatment falling short of torture will have him confessing to being in league with the Evil Doers before too long.

On a broader note, I live in New York City and, as I’m sure that you understand, I hear negative comments about Our Glorious Leader on a fairly regular basis. It would be convenient if there were a hotline that I could call when this happens to bring these traitors to the Global War on Terror to justice. That way loyal patriotic Americans such as myself could help fight this domestic insurgency against our continued success in the Global War On Terrorism.

Yours in eternal struggle against the forces of evil,

V Jones

An Inconvenient Truth

I watched the movie last weekend. The impending doom of the earth depicted came to life. I didn't pay much attention to Al Gore when he was in politics, but I'm glad he made the documentary. I wasn't planning on seeing it. I figured that it would be depressing and that I already have a pretty good idea about what's going on with the climate. I'm glad I saw it. It reinforced my suspicions that we're pretty much fucked on the climate front.

The thing I'm really confused about is why are the world's priorities so fucked up. As a civilization we are pretty self-destructive. As Americans we are at the top of the list. We know that McBurgers, and Yukon XL SUV's operated while talking on the mobile phone kills people. This is a common practice by the bastards in the upper middle class of our society. They have all the resources to know that 14 miles per gallon is a fucked up number in the 21st century, but they don't give a shit. They can't even stop eating french fries long enough to prevent a heart attack, these are people with college degrees and professional jobs. Somebody should know better. That's where the yuppies come in, former hippies who now make money, they annoy the shit out of everyone with their self-righteous hybrids and designer jeans. They do enough to clear their conscience, but not much else because they are too busy making appointments for a de-tox treatment and massage at the local spa.

So the question is, how do people like me slow down and let go long enough to stop judging all the fuckers long enough to live my own life. Meditation? Join the Marines? Wander the world pretending I'm looking for the truth when I'm more interested in chasing exotic tail?

Monday, January 29, 2007


I wasn't sure what to write for my first post, so I figure I'll share some news that's huge to me and fairly insignificant to the rest of the world (a few key people in my "inner circle" aside). I have finally given in to all of that tobacco propaganda. No, I'm not speaking of the "Alive with Pleasure" "Welcome to Flavor Country" kind, but the equally obnoxious from the other side kind. The sanctimonious, holier than thou, young college do-gooder kind. I have finally quit smoking after nearly eleven years of a pack and a half to two pack daily habit.

I label this post "Success?" with a question mark, because it's only been about four days since I've been cigarette free. Hopefully I can keep it up. I'd like to think that I'm stronger than a goddamn leaf.

Also, Wellbutrin is a godsend. Those who know me intimately, are quite aware of my....bitterness for lack of a better term. (Vermin, I'm looking in your direction.) In these past four days, I haven't desired to kill anyone with any more frequency than is normal for me. That's not to say that I haven't wanted to kill roughly 70% of the people I have come in contact with, but it hasn't gotten worse.


For the first and probably the last time for a long time, I have a long vacation. I don't have anything to do. So why am I writing this? Why am I not doing all of the shit I'd imagined I would do with a bunch of time on my hands? Why have I not disappeared into the wilderness or into the wilds of old Mexico? That's how I usually handle my business. But I got myself to deal with and here is as good as a place as any. I'm a tough motherfucker to take on. I may be be skinny but I'm wirey. I can walk for days, drink myself into a stupor, and follow my dick the entire length of the applachian trail without food, but in the end I come back to myself just more haggard for it.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

A second voice

After a long distraction with life, I'm back to put my words down. Vernin put it down more eloquently, but I'm also here to figure some shit out.

Almost four years ago in an act of desperation mixed with curiosity I went down to the strip mall to enlist in the us air force. I was tired of working for peanuts and being trapped in the cube. I was going mad. I was newly married with a wife from out of the country that I needed to support, but I also had to escape my mundane job and life. Now to many, a stint in the military at a time when a cowboy is in charge is nothing short of madness, but as I just said I was going mad myself. It wasn't quite patriotism that led me into the recruiter's office, I mean we had just invaded Iraq and I thought it was a mistake from the beginning. I think I wanted to join the club. I wanted the experience of it all. My father had done it. I wanted to be apart of the fraternity of those who have learned to wear a uniform flawlessly down to the last detail and how to drill on a parade field in perfect synchronization. Ultimately I wanted to become one of those that have trained their minds to make the ultimate sacrifice for their country whether they believed in the cause or not. Maybe I saw too many images of the noble American soldier selflessly serving his country in foreign lands, and I wanted to do that too. I wanted to do something honorable. I wanted gain the stoicism of a warrior, which I compared to the stoicism of the Bushido culture I observed while living in Japan. I was excited to perfect myself. I enjoyed boot camp as I was molded by military discipline. In fact, some of the hype is true. There is something to be said for it. I was proud on graduation day as I marched in perfect step across the parade ground in my air force blues with my family watching. When the parade was over we stood locked at attention and waited as our families rushed from the bleachers to greet us and see the changes we had undergone is such a short period. Unfortunately it starts to look more and more like an average job the longer you stay in.

In fact, there are many cubicles in the Air Force. Furthermore, when I didn't find the samurai-like lifestyle I was hoping for my fascination wained and I longed for freer days. Maybe I should have joined the Marines, maybe they could have really shaped my mind, maybe the air force is just too half-assed. See, I wanted to blindly follow the group and quiet my mind, and sleep content every night. I thought the US military could do that for me. Perception is everything. I've realized I can't let go of society like a true soldier should. I wasn't able to divorce myself from the politics and my moral hangups on how the government uses the US military.

Besides that, I can't wait to let it all hang out out again. I can't wait to get back to rambling around the globe free again. I've got a feeling that I'll still feel moral weight to try to change something. Now's the time to sort it out.

You Are Not My Problem

Somewhere between the hours of 9 to 5 every day I inhabit a world that is delicately described as "Hard to Employ Populations". Don't get me wrong, I hate having to get my ass out of bed in the morning as much as the next guy, am disgusted at the fact that I sit in a cubicle, and am generally offended that I'm not given a salary for simply being the all around bundle of joy that you know and love. But aside from that I generally like my job. It's a wonderful mix of writing grants, doing mind numbing paper work and research, and having people threaten to kill me.

There are various degrees of "Hard to Employ" out there. Somewhere near the bottom of the pile lies the guy who was talking to the wall the other morning. A manager runs in to my side of the office with the unmistakable "Somebody come quick" urgency of someone who smells impending violence in the air. We all rush in to the waiting room - itself an act that generally pushes people over the edge from agitation to outright rage - and just stop.

He's not really menacing. Just standing next to the wall having a conversation. With it. After it became clear that no blood was going to be shed, most people wandered back to their desks. I stuck around and stood halfway between the two conversations taking place, the guy talking to the wall, and his councillor talking to her boss.

Upon further observation, it became clear that the guy was actually involved in two conversations. The one with the wall was pretty calm. It consisted mostly of, "No, take another hit... shit smoke all you want, I don't care... yeah, I used to have to smoke a lot to get off, but now I can get high just by thinking of it... no man, hit it again, I'm cool... yeah, don't it feel great... I feel like I could take on the world... I mean, nothing matters at all... yeah... yeah... no, hit it one more time, I'm just floating away here...."

If it were taking place with an actual human being back in my pothead days, he would be pretty cool. I sincerely doubt he was talking about the reefer, though... The second conversation, which was interspersed with that one, was where the aggression was coming out. "Motherfuckers think they can thrown me out...." "what the fuck am I to you, huh?" "you cant try and tell me how to fucking act, I live my own god damn life, motherfucker.... don't you look at me... don't you look at me." This conversation was taking place in a manner that in saner people would be described as "talking to yourself" He, on the other hand, seemed to be addressing the space two feet in front of him. He went back and forth, turning to the wall all chill, and going back to threaten the air in front of him. The conversation between the Councilor and her boss was even more entertaining. Apparently being batshit crazy isn't reason enough to throw him out of the program, and we need to terminate him in a way that doesn't leave us open for a lawsuit. The prospect of him standing in front of a judge testifying seemed pretty amusing at the time, but what do I know. I'm the guy who laughs at all the inappropriate parts of movies... while everyone else is getting around to empathy and human emotions...

Somewhere while they were having the conversation, we lost track of the guy. He stepped into the elevator and wandered off into the world.... "Where did he go?" "Well," I suggested "if he got off in one of the other floors and starts to do his act we'll hear the screams soon enough, and if not he's not really our problem anymore... is he?" With a certain class of people my goal is to get them out of the office without incident. Beyond that, I don't really care. I have no power to save them from themselves or anybody else. All I can accomplish is to convert them into somebody else's problem, and hope that I'm not around to clean up the messes they leave behind.

The temptation with the first post on a blog is to give some sort of general introduction, an outline of where you plan on going with things. As I hope that a review of the above Youtube clibs makes perfectly clear, I aim at nothing short of Ultimate Truth. Not the Ultimate Truth that they promised you in Sunday School, or that Donald Rumsfeld promised to dispense from his podium. Rather, at Splatter Zone we approach ultimate truth through the medium of Japanese girl bands wearing vinal jumpsuits and meat strapped to their heads being attacked by a giant lizard, priests killing armies of zombies with lawn mowers, William S. Burrough's heroin fueled meditations on the Myan mythology of death, Judo masters attacking girls wearing short skirts, and Robert Anton Wilson's discourses on reprogramming your mind.

Will we finally arrive at the Ultimate Truth, of which all of these is merely a pale reflection?
I cannot say. But to not set out on that journey towards the Ultimate is to relegate yourself to defeat from the beginning. And we can't have that, now, can we?