Notes to Self

1.  Do not, under any circumstances, take parenting advice from bad parents.  If you listen to them, you will head into disaster at full speed.  Just nod and kindly get on with your day.

2.  Do not, under any circumstances, take economic advice from people who are broke.  Listen to them, though, because it is funny.

3.  Isolation is the key to happiness.  The second you start to let people into your life is the second you start flirting with disaster.  Always keep your true friends close, though, and kill for them if you must.

4.   Turn off your cell phone.  Stop texting unless necessary.  Cut out extraneous contact.

5.  Mystery is essential in keeping your sanity.  Mystery and isolation go hand in hand.

6.  Tell not your plans ahead of time, as naysayers love to say, "Nay!"

7.  Never let anyone's stale opinion's become your navigational tool.  You will end up exactly where you deserve to be.


Monday Destroyed

Read a few blog posts this morning from people I really respect.  Both were filled with feelings of contentment, self-discovery and that elusive creature known as happiness.  I contrasted that with what I know is going on in other people's lives -- the pain, misery, sorrow and sense of despair that can only come from being handed the bladed end of the knife one too many times.

I didn't read it all with a sense of irony, and I didn't dismiss any of it as being the insane rantings of people I like to call "wide-eyed lobotomies."  In fact, some people may not have found them to be as uplifting as I, but that is neither here nor there.  Everyone has their own interpretation of things based on their own experiences and their knowledge on the magic of language. 

As I write this, the peppers from last night, which were far more potent that I would have expected, are doing a number on my stomach, but I have every intention of going in because I don't like being here when my daughter is not around.  Serving my time is already mentally painful.  Might as well add the physical to it.

Tonight I'll be editing my interview with the director of a film I haven't seen yet.  I'll try to ignore all the bullshit and get hopefully finish it.  It hasn't been easy because I want it to be as important as the film is.  I don't want to let myself or the director down.  He's on a good path, and important path, and I don't want to be a stumbling block.

My coffee, I have decided, is not helping my stomach.  My addiction to caffeine, however, means I have to accept that or suffer a headache and stomach ache.  My stomach has survived worse than hot peppers.  Far worse. 

I have restarted the manuscript, and I'm thinking, just based upon what I've written so far, that this will be self-published.  I hate to do that, but I'm thinking it may be my only alternative.  Publishers are cowardly.

There was more I was going to write. I actually deleted most of it.  I realized it would be taken the wrong way by some and the right way by others.  Some things, it seems, must be kept private.

Others -- they are out there for the world to destroy as it sees fit.  Happy Monday, Acid Eaters.  Let this one count for nothing.


The Hypocrisy of Equality

I like to challenge hypocrisy when I see it (including my own).  I am also a firm believer in not discriminating based on things we really have no control over like skin color, genitalia and so forth.  I also believe that business or entities that aren't supported in any way shape or form by public tax dollars have every right to discriminate against someone based on anything.  Just like consumers have a right to discriminate against a business that discriminates.  I'm not sure discrimination is the best policy for a business to have (you automatically eliminate some of the talent pool and you face economic repercussions), but I believe it is a business owner's right ... as long as that business gets no public support in the form of tax dollars or tax breaks.

As a society, we have come to this blanket agreement that discrimination is "bad."  By "blanket agreement" I mean to say we support the laws and haven't overthrown the government that enforces them.  We may individually disagree with these laws, but as a group we've accepted them.  We have made exceptions, however.

We discriminate when it comes to a person's or the public's safety.  Blind people can't fly planes.  Child molesters can't work around children.  This is a far cry from Irish not being hired or black people not being able to use public water fountains.  This, I believe, is a good thing.  Blind people shouldn't really fly planes.  It is unsafe for everyone.  Child molesters shouldn't work around children.  That's common sense.

There are groups that spring up to ensure that whomever they are representing aren't discriminated against.  Bazelon Center.  Fair housing groups.  The American Disability Association.  Various gay rights groups.  All of these are very good and beneficial.  They exist even though society has said, in general, we don't think discrimination is good.  (There are always societal exceptions -- gay marriage comes to mind, but that will eventually happen and gays can face a fifty percent divorce rate like their straight counterparts.)  We think that people should be treated equally ... as long as doing so doesn't put them or others in harm's way.  If a Vietnamese woman can do a job, she should get the job.  If a guy in a wheelchair is financially able to rent an apartment, he should be able to do so.  The Vietnamese woman and the wheelchair bound man have just as much right to do something as the white woman and the man who can move unassisted.

That, in the words of Martha Stewart, is a good thing because it ensures none of us will face discrimination ... or at least it should ensure that. Reality, as always, is different.  In general, though, that is what it should do.

There are other things society agrees to (also in the sense that it isn't dismantling the government because of it) in general terms. War.  Corporate welfare.  The death penalty.  Giving lip service to education while at the same time not funding it.  These are things I don't agree with, and nor do a lot of other people, but we have this tacit agreement that it is okay because we haven't really done anything about them.

Like groups that champion for the rights of those who are typically discriminated against, people who oppose certain public policies make their voices heard, too.  They rally.  They organize.  They distribute literature.  They get the word out about what they think is wrong with society, much like the Jewish Defense League challenges anti-Semitism when it sees it.

Obviously, this leads to some hypocrisy and unpleasant truths that are rarely talked about in polite circles.  It is a combination of two of these values that are at odds with each other in the worst way because we, as a society, have come to the agreement that these things are okay: the notion that all people should be treated as equals and the death penalty.

If all people are to be treated as equals and the death penalty is okay, why don't we execute mentally retarded (also known as intellectually disabled) murderers?

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that executing the intellectually disabled is unconstitutional.  Myself, I don't support the death penalty, so this hypocrisy doesn't affect me, but I wonder about those who think equality is important while at the same time supporting the death penalty.  I even wonder about groups that make a case for equality, such as the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD), which "applauds" this court ruling.  The group, according to its own material, supports "universal rights" for those with intellectual disabilities.

Some are more equal than others.

If you think all people are equal, you should support the idea that if people are equal they are treated equally.  If you believe that people should be treated equally, you have to take the good with the bad.  That includes the death penalty.

I'm against the death penalty when administered by the state, as mentioned earlier.  I don't want to see the state executing people with IQs below 70, and nor do I want to see the state executing people who are geniuses.  Groups like the AAIDD, which has "always advocated against the death penalty" for those who are intellectually disabled are hypocrites.  I don't see the AAIDD speaking out against the death penalty overall, just for the people it says deserves "universal rights."  It's mission statement specifically says it advocates for the "equality" of those with intellectual disabilities.  By its own words it should be supporting the death penalty for the intellectually challenged.

It's a decidedly distasteful subject.  There will be those who think I am advocating for the death penalty of mentally disabled people who have committed murder.  I am not, and never would advocate that.  Again, I am opposed to the death penalty no matter who it is being used against.  What I am questioning, though, is how seriously you can take a group that comes out and states, "We want this group to be treated as equals ... except when it comes to when they kill someone.  In that case, we want you to take their disability into consideration and treat them differently than everyone else."

That sort of thinking, no matter the group it is geared toward, seems backwards, hypocritical and eventually dangerous.  After all, right there you are admitting that whatever group you are advocating for isn't like everyone else, and if you treat them special in one instance, what's to say they shouldn't be treated differently in another less beneficial way? Yes, it's a slippery slope, but it is one often started by those who are looking to "watch out" for one group over another.

The end result is really pretty clear.  We love the concept of equality, but we don't like it in practice.  We need to stop being such hypocrites, or at least admit to it more.  Groups like the AAIDD are great at making sure their "wards," for lack of a better term, are not discriminated against, but they lose all credibility when they ask them to be treated differently.  It's a double-edged sword, and it is hard to have it both ways.  That's exactly what far too many advocacy groups want, however, and that is the ultimate hypocrisy of equality.

Perhaps the solution is not to treat everyone equally, but to treat everyone with respect.  This lets you take into consideration special circumstances without risking unequal treatment.  Is respect more important than equality?  Of course not, but it is easier to manage and is a far more morally superior position.


The Taste of Blood Made Me Want You

I was going to write on my movie blog tonight, but an e-mail sort of made me think a bit.  The e-mail had one kind of toss-off line, and it came after I wrote a lengthy e-mail to a friend who is currently overseas.  It took something out of me.  Writing about Children of the Corn was going to take more effort than it was worth.  That rarely happens to me.

Now I'm tired and hungry.  I am thirsty.  I am watching good friends get so stressed out about that place I serve time at that many are leaving, thinking of leaving, or will be leaving if only because their bodies will have shut down.  The stress they feel is killing them.  I am thankful that isn't me, not because I don't have stress.  No, it isn't me because I'm not letting it be me.  I am fighting that, and while it isn't easy, it is necessary.  If only to keep my sanity.

Yeah, I'm about burned out for the night.  Tomorrow is a new day.  I fear, however, that it won't be any different.  And that is the best definition of Hell that the world has to offer.


Just an Old-Fashioned Love Song

Woke up.  Went to work on the manuscript.  Couldn't open the file.  Couldn't open the backup file.  Gone.  A few hundred pages.  Gone.

After fuming and almost putting my fist through the netbook, I decided I needed to continue it.  Continue it as if this was meant to happen.  So I did.  I started it over and made it as the narrator was finally going to tell the truth.  It will be far nastier, far dirtier, and it will cut out a lot of the stuff I wasn't liking out of the first draft -- the stuff I thought made the narrator more tolerable.  He'll still be a fine fellow to start (you need that arc), but instead of happening in "real time" as the first draft did, this will be written about after the fact. 

Irritating.  Yes.  Insurmountable?  Hell no.  This could be the best thing that could happen to it.


I Found Love at the Business End of a Gun (aka MTV Get Off the Air!)

I had about three people today ask me if I saw the MTV Video Music Awards that recently aired.  I thought it happened last week, but nobody mentioned it to me then, so I could be wrong.  Regardless, I did not watch it.  Did not know it was on, and wouldn't have watched had I known.

MTV lost any kind of relevance it had (which wasn't much to begin with) back when The Real World first aired.  The music I liked wasn't really represented on it, and for the longest time it wouldn't play videos from black artists because they were too "fringe."  The last band I "discovered" on there was Faith No More, and quite honestly I find it ironic that the channel is now more known for video music awards than it is for playing videos.  Does it even play videos anymore?

Like anyone who grew up with MTV, I do have good memories associated with it.  A lot of the female friends I liked enjoyed the channel.  I used to have some wonderful teenage sex to 120 Minutes and Headbangers Ball.  In fact, I remember one particular night with a female who gave me a bj on my friend's bed.  We were surrounded by stolen guns as Iron Maiden sang "Run to the Hills"  (I think that was the song; I was preoccupied).  Good times.

Eventually, MTV stopped playing videos and branched out into other crap.  Not that the channel was cutting edge to begin with (unless you led a sheltered life), but now it was even less so.  Sure, it had lost its fear of black artists (thanks to CBS Records and its threat to withhold music), but Yo! MTV Raps really just promoted stereotypes.

In other words, MTV was as big a mess as mainstream radio, only people didn't really see it because they were way too enamored with it to see past its VJ's big hair and satin jackets. 

I can't remember the last time I watched the channel.  It can't even say what the last thing was that I watched on it.  It sure as hell wasn't a video awards show on a channel that doesn't play videos.  Some may call that cleverly ironic.  I call it typical bait-and-switch capitalism.  I don't care to see Kayne West being a boor, and I sure as hell don't care about what the channel considers to be music.  Maybe if someone pulled a GG Allin on the audience it would be worth it, until that day, however, I'll retain my memories of a bed littered with rifles and shotguns and a girl who stopped briefly enough to say, "This is my favorite Maiden song."

Monday Morning Shotgun Blues

Up at 4:54.  That's morning time.  Before the sun.  Shower.  Breakfast.  Write.  The manuscript is coming along, lured like a teen girl who hears empty promises falling from the lips of an older man who "gets her."  It is the parent's worst nightmare.  At times it is my nightmare. 

Thought a lot about the self-publishing route this weekend.  Eliminate all middlemen.  The only fear there, and it is a huge fear, is that I won't make enough (no advance, mother fucker) to quit my job.  I'm sure eventually I could sell enough, but self-publishing is a hard road to follow, and it is full of potholes.  Again, however, cutting out the publishing house is very appealing, and it could be the wave of the future.  Print on demand sure as hell is.  Environmentally friendly, and it opens up niche markets.

By the time I'm done working on the manuscript, I realize I have this other job to go to.  Usually I take some time to mentally prepare, but lately I've just said "fuck it" and have been far happier for it.  That mindset continues.  Serve my time.  That's my mantra.  Serve my time.

The sun came up.  The promise of rain somehow forgotten by Mother Nature, who is an untamed bitch when it comes to these things.   The only sun I truly look forward to is the sun on my daughter's soccer days and the Black Sun, which is perpetually giving off energy anyway regardless of whether or not you can see it.

Wanted to watch something before work to put me in a good mood, but I had no time for it.  So I read a bit (Jitterbug Perfume if you must know) and then decided to hop on here and spew.  Spewing, while perhaps unpleasant for the reader, keeps me from lobbing a grenade into a crowded showing of Julie & Julia

My cell phone is dinging with the noise of multiple received texts.  Arsenal has sent its usual allotment for the day, so this is probably work related.  I chose to ignore that for now.  Again, keeps the grenades at bay.

About ready to go serve my time.  To quote The Clash, in its spectacular "Guns of Brixton," " The money feels good/And your life you like it well/But surely your time will come/
As in Heaven, as in Hell."

Monday Morning Shotgun Blues.


The Crisis of Dwindling Returns (aka A Sidebar of Crazy)

Watching things spin slowly out of control around me has been fascinating the past few weeks.  Watching the movements, the words used, the nerves as they rot -- it has been an education.  This is especially true since this time I don't feel the whirlwind.  Is it a lack of compassion, or something deeper?


I've been focused (laser-like, if it must be known) and what I want out of my life so much so that I have been less inclined to take on the burdens of the world (something I've been accused of doing far too much in the past).  It has been a mixed bag, so far, but when it comes to things like work and life it has been transformational.  With this focus comes clarity.  With this clarity comes plans.  When I told Mirror I was slowly isolating myself from the majority of the world, but had yet to figured out a thorough way to do it, many ideas had come to mind.  I, of course, won't isolate myself from my true friends. 

I am weeding out the stress killers.  I am negating the insanity.  I am taking every step with a clear goal in mind.  It is almost a Biblical moment. 

For too long I have listened to others.  I have heard there words and often taken them to heart.  I have let that influence me in ways that are as profound as they are disturbing.  I realize that much of what was my unhappiness stemmed from listening to others give their two cents on what they thought I should be doing.  And not that I always believed them (rarely was that the case), but the fact that I even gave took in the words instead of just stopping them before they reached the door so to speak had an effect on me.

No more.  And that is beautiful.

I wake up.  Put on the music.  Shower.  Write.  Serve my time.  Write some more.  Every step an inch closer to what I want.  A time line.  A path.  Not to be deterred.  Not to be sidetracked.  Not to be made to feel alien in my ways.  I have spent a year listening to people tell me their thoughts on me that it was starting to get very easy to lose myself to that.

Now I just don't care.  It is not a callous thing.  It is not an attack on anyone or anything.  It is just my way of saying, "Trespassers beware."

I love new journeys into lands unknown. 


Eureka Phone Scam

Eureka police are warning residents of a phone scam that involves someone claiming to be the victim of a Eureka Police Department employee. This victim is asking for donations.

Eureka's citizens have a pretty low opinion of their police force. Between some widely publicized shooting and extensive in-fighting, it's no surprise to see someone capitalizing on the sentiment. Of course, it's a ridiculous scam, and if anyone falls for it they kind of deserve it. The scam is also indicative of our criminal population.

Eureka, California, for those lucky enough not to live here, is not exactly a mecca of enterprising criminals and competent detective work. In fact, I'd for so far as to say the police and criminals kind of deserve each other half the time ... with a few exceptions on either side of the fence. I've lived in places where both the criminals and the police were far scarier than could ever be imagined here. I don't miss it, either.

I almost wish this scammer would call me. I enjoy those types of things far too much, and that would be no exception. Instead, I'll have to stick with the telemarketers and occasional wrong number. Maybe someday ...


Meg Whitman Loves Jerry Brown

If you live in California you can't help but be constantly assaulted by ads proclaiming the god-like abilities of Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown.  Both claim they can save this state from falling into the Pacific. 

Personally, I'd like to see both of them swinging by their necks from electrical poles like pinatas that have long been emptied of treats.  They are both useless, and neither seems to know it.

Jerry Brown is the best thing to happen to Meg Whitman.  Next to him, she appears competent ... until she opens her mouth and starts talking about the doomed California economy and her plan to save it by eliminating over 40,000 good paying jobs.  Remember, payroll taxes give the state 55% of its operating revenue.  Cutting those jobs will hurt, but Whitman has a plan to replace those jobs.  She hasn't said that, of course, but one would figure she's got to, right?  Opening more Burger Kings would do that.  Awesome!

Brown, on the other hand, has been around a lot.  He's establishment.  He's been loved and hated, and he, like Whitman, is quick to claim California is dying.  His plan?  Like Whitman's, it's virtually unstated. 

Brown and Whitman have failed to articulate that the entire country is in an economic downturn that could quite possibly make the Depression look like a warm-up.  California's economy will not fully recover until the country is back on the right track.  It is economic ecology -- all tied together.  We Californians may like to think we are some sort of oasis, but the truth is we are just as much vultures as the other states.  We have been feeding off the corpse of greed-based capitalism for so long that now that the marrow's been sucked dry we don't know where to turn.

Can the economy be saved?  Of course.  The economy is not a force of nature.  It is manipulated.  It is, when you get right down to it, an enormous fakery, a sham religion believed in by the masses.  California can take small steps to help itself (legalizing marijuana is the first step), but it won't fully recover until the country is back on its feet.  When will that happen?  Hard to say, as so many different factors must come into place.  Consumer confidence must grow.  Jobs must be created and maintained.  Our "leaders" must work together and stop pretending that a black man is the worst thing that could happen to a country.  Endless war must be ended.  We must listen to what the rest of the world is saying, and we must admit that our future is tied into the world's future.  It's a global economy.  It's not a national economy.  Global.

Watching Meg and Jerry go at it via insane television and radio ads is amusing at best.  Unfortunately, it seems that both are on track to make things worse.  I fear one of them will be elected before some assassin or force of nature takes them both out.  Whitman will act without thinking.  Brown won't act at all.

It's far too long before the election.  Best to shut off the TV.


The Flesh Consumes You

I have long tried to make sense of the ecstasy involved with flesh.  I realize that for some people, the touch of a lover's fingers traveling along their spine is enough to make them shiver.  For others it takes a bit ... more.

Human flesh is so ingrained into our culture that it is hard to escape it even if you wanted to.  Drink the blood of Jesus and eat his flesh.  Watch the ads for perfume that are nothing but flesh having its signature scent masked.  Gaze at the flesh adorned with tattoos.  Marvel at the smooth butt of a baby.  Rub your lotions into it to make it softer and more supple, to hide its age.  Festoon it with silver and gold, meant to attract the eye or serve as a rite of passage.  Describe it in terms equated with food: vanilla, peach, chocolate, salty.

For some, that is as far as it goes.  Others almost turn it into a religion itself.

Cannibalism, the eating of people, which can sometimes include the flesh, is a fascinating subject for me, but it has more to do with the act and the psychology behind it than anything else.  Yet, I will admit that there is a fascination behind the idea of what would happen if you were to just gnaw into someone and feel the flesh break between your teeth.  You have now opened the person up to infection.  You have destroyed their safeguards.  You have violated the flesh.

Necrophiliacs, those who love the dead, wallow in the rot of the flesh, though some stop before it gets that far.  They marvel at the colors it takes on as it works its way through stages of decomposition.  They take that love and fascination that others only have in passing and carry it through to its bitter, liquid end.  The flesh worshipped becomes the flesh vanishing, and that in and of itself is an act of love.

When we go to the beach or the river, we gaze in awe of the flesh on display.  Some would say a woman is even sexier wearing some clothes and exposing only a little flesh than she would be if totally nude.  The flesh offers promises of what is and could be, it is fantasy made whole.  It is an organ of eroticism that breathes, sweats and absorbs.  It has a scent, a taste, a visual component that triggers memories and desires.  It is a reminder of what separates us from the furred beasts.

There are those of us who spend our time baking it in the sun, and others who keep it as white as a ghost.  The newborn needs to feel and smell its mother's flesh as part of its development.  There are few things finer than feeling flesh upon flesh in any given situation.

Human flesh, which throughout history has been burned, cut, pulled from the muscles, bound into books and so on, is a complex part of our culture.  Some cultures hide it.  Others display it.  Not a single one ignores it, however, despite the lack of thought that goes into the subject. 

People who love the dead or consume their fellow man, have long understood the power of the flesh.  They are allied with its iconic status in ways that many have never even thought about.  They understand it is what makes us whole.

In the end, it makes me wonder who is more human.  The ones who understand and acknowledge the power of the flesh, or those who willfully or ignorantly ignore it?  I don't have an answer to that, but I'll usually go with those who have at least thought about it to some extent.  It seems to me, however, like with most things, the most ardent worshippers are those who have put the least thought into it.

And those are the ones who scare me the most.


More Search Word Fun!

Once again, Regan Reese has drawn people to the blog.  This time people were looking for iPhone crap and a bukkake interview, neither of which could be found here.

A few others were pretty self-explanatory, too.  "Lindsay Lohan Naked" (just go see Machete.)  "Longpig" (go figure).  "Raw Lust."  "Side Boob." (Seriously, with all the porn on the net, this is what you look for?) Those were normal.  The not-so-normal ones were pretty amusing, too.

The first that caught my attention was "people blank eyes."  I cannot imagine what shut-in typed that into Google.  Nor can I imagine why.

Then there was "pocket aces murder."  This was disturbing since "pocket aces" is the title of my book.  "Murder," however, had me wondering what the fuck that was about.

Then there were a slew of searches for Shirley Temple.  Shirley Temple in her twenties, Shirley Temple naked and Shirley Temple porn images.  I know what brought those people to my site (it was my piece on swastikas in art, which also brought a lot of people here), but to think people were looking for Shirley Temple porn images (as if this possibly exists) is a whole other level of creepy.  It reminds me of a search term I found back in March: masturbatingseniors.

Why, Lord, why?

Again, with all the porn available (including side boobs!), why on Earth would you want to see masturbating seniors?  Why would you want Shirley Temple porn images?  Why would you think that exists?  I understand that there are pedophiles out there who may want to see such a thing when it comes to Shirley Temple (though how old would those pedophiles have to be to remember her?), but aren't there better things to look at?

I suppose I should be grateful people are coming to the site at all.  Even if they are looking for "sadist porn" and "underage strippers in Humboldt County."  It just makes me wonder about the sanity of our citizens.

Oh, and here are two interesting searches where people are actually mentioned:  "christine swannack, aromas" (wonder what that is about) and "david bossie is a lying piece of shit."  That sort of says it all.

Next month I'll do another report on the searches that bring doomed souls to this blog in search of disturbing pornography, cannibalism and the dead eyes and strange aromas of people.


Excerpts From An E-mail (Or How Screwed Up My Weekend Is)

I took a break from getting the house in order before my guest arrives to take in Machete.  After the film, while checking my e-mail, I sent a letter off to my guest to entertain her with how Saturday went.  (She already got one about Friday.)  I would normally include a post about movies on my movie blog, "The Last Picture Blog," but I don't think everyone would read that, and I this excerpt from my e-mail is less about the film and more about what happened.  Enjoy ...

... Today I took a break from cleaning to go see Machete.  I love grindhouse/exploitation cinema, and where else am I going to see Danny Trejo, Robert De Niro, Jeff Fahey, Don Johnson, Steven Seagal and Lindsay Lohan (both naked and as a gun-toting, habit-wearing vigilante), cell phones hidden in vaginas and escapes using intestines all in the same movie?  Nowhere.  You would probably not appreciate the film, but you will love this story. 

I went alone because the company of a 16 year old female (see previous e-mail for that story) seemed ... wrong.  I'm sitting in the theatre and I notice a lot of guys are entering in pairs.  None of them will sit by each other, though.  There always has to be a seat between them so other men know they aren't gay.  Oddly enough, many are wearing camo baseball caps.  A cult perhaps?  At one point, one of these super-heterosexuals shouted out, "Let's get this started!"  Then he told his "bud" to hold his seat for him while he got candy.  Cute.

The movie starts.  It's directed and written by a Mexican and stars primarily Mexican actors.  There is a scene with a bunch of redneck vigilantes shooting illegal immigrants crossing the border, and Don Johnson (who was very good) gives a speech about protecting the country from such these people because nobody else will.  At this point, one of those Rambo-wannabes in the audience says, "You got that right!"

And that wasn't the first of those types of shout-outs.  It was very apparent that the filmmakers were using a Modest Proposal type message (eating babies during the potato famine if you don't remember Swift's piece) to get their point across.  Sarcasm was obviously lost on the yahoos in the audience, though.  I wasn't going to directly challenge this rather large group because I'd a) get my ass kicked, and b) didn't want to totally ruin the movie for others.  So, instead, I decided to take a different stand and be just as vocal.

When a senator on screen (played by De Niro) starts talking about the parasites that are immigrants, I loudly said, "The only parasites I see on screen are politicians and capitalists."  A few people looked.  When a white redneck was slaughtered on screen with a machete, I said, "Praise Jesus!"  That stopped the rednecks in the crowd from saying anything else.

Movie was great.  Funny.  Good politics in an action film, of all things.  Anti-capitalist, pro-open borders, so on.  I had consumed a medium Coke, however, and needed to urinate.  My way into the bathroom was blocked by two men in electric wheelchairs!  I had never encountered this.  They were trying to get into the bathroom, and their way was blocked by a third man ... in an electric wheelchair!  When does this actually happen outside of wheelchair conventions?  Apparently at screenings of Machete!
"I couldn't hit the urinal," the man trying to get out says, "so I pissed all over the walls."

The other two guys in wheelchairs laugh and finally make their way in and the third man passes me.  I then started to wonder, "How do they pull that off?"  Fearing they would ask for help, I dove into a stall to urinate.  At this point I heard the two men struggle (one would assume they were not having sex).  Then one said, "I didn't think that was Robert De Niro in the movie, but by the end I was convinced it was him."  He went on and on about this.

Keep in mind that Robert De Niro's name comes up in big letters in the opening credits.  At no point in the film does he not look like De Niro, either.  Also, there is a few scenes at the end where he is driving a taxi cab.  I guess the fact that he didn't have a mohawk threw these guys off.

What a fucking weird weekend. ...

Lovely movie.  Lovely.  Strange people, though.  Very strange.


Oh, The Drama!

It seems like the people who can't run their own lives have no problem telling you how to run your own.  They should be ignored.

People seem to love drama.  They love creating it.  They love being in the middle of it.  They love being the cause of it, or the root of the speculation.  They, too, should be ignored.

I've read in several places that the generation that came to age in the 1980s and 1990s are now having problems with acceptance ... especially in the work place.  These "social networkers" apparently need constant praise in order to know they are performing to satisfaction.  It is almost as if they live life in a video game, with goals that are clearly defined and achievements to be handed out for the most mundane things.  ("Thanks for showing up today!")  A recent study also showed that the more you post on social networks (in full disclosure, I have this blog linked to Facebook, so it will appear there, too) the less self-esteem you have.  Overcompensation is what they used to call it.  Now it's a "condition."

Some people take their job way too seriously.  If you aren't curing cancer, saving lives, or working on disarming the world's nukes -- it's just a job.  Nothing more.  Nothing less.  It's a means to an end.  You can enjoy it.  Hate it.  Be indifferent about it.  Just don't lose sight of what it really is.

The more engaged I become with people, the less there is to like.  The more I withdrawal, the better my relations are with those I continue to include in my list of contacts. 

But as for the drama, acceptance and desire to make one's job his or her life -- I just don't get it.  But then again, it makes Facebook interesting.


Breed ... Like Rats

I had just had my hot water heater fixed.  I was in the process of cleaning before my visitor arrives, and I was hungry.  I didn't have time to cook, and I couldn't meet anyone for dinner as I had more to do, so Subway was the choice. 

Not a good idea.

At the very front of the line was a woman with a bad tattoo and three little kids in tow.  One was an infant in a stroller.  His older brother, all of about eight, kept putting his butt in the kid's face.  A classy move he probably aped off one of the guys who may or may not be his father.  The mom tried paying with an ATM card, first disputing the price, and then flipping out because she didn't get the sandwich she wanted.

In front of me was a clan.  A large clan.  First there was grampa.  He was a winner.  Borderline transient looking with a hat featuring some skeleton giving the world the double middle finger.  I bet that guy is so "fuck you world" that he doesn't even accept government subsidies.  His meth lab supports him very well, thank you.  Then there was the older daughter.  A bad dye job did nothing to distract from her pajama bottoms and slippers.  This was a 5:50 p.m., and she had probably just rolled out of bed, tired from another late shift telecommuting to MIT.  Her sister was also in pajama bottoms (also on the late shift?) and she had what looked like a month old baby held to her chest.  No, not to breast feed, but to shut the fuck up.  Her other three kids sat with gramps.  Her boyfriend (perhaps husband), was the best dressed of the bunch.  You could tell any money he made went to new jeans (designer) that were three sizes too big, an expensive shirt, and bling.  His kids could wear hand-me-downs, and they did that quite well.

The multiple sandwich orders these people gave were so fucking convoluted that had I been prepping them I would have taken one of those sandwich knives and plunged it handle-deep into the rat breeder's eyeball.  Then I would have given it a few twists to see if I could go all blender-like on that region of the brain that controls speech.

"Lots of mayo and mustard, but not too much.

"Microwave the meat with the cheese on this one, but not that one."

"Do you have sourdough?  No?  What's close to that?"

"Yellow cheese on two of them, but not those others."

"Just a little onions.  No, that's too much.  Now that's too little.  Are you listening?"

"We have three more sandwiches to order."

Oh. My. God. 

My patience was pushed to the limit.  At one point the rat breeder wanted to see the selections of bread, but I was in front of the sign.  I wouldn't budge.  People who go into public in pajamas don't have a lot of room to make demands.  The only way this changes is if their house just burned down, and if that's the case they better be fucking polite about it. 

"If he would move, I could see the breads, Dad."

I stayed in position.  Look through me with your X-ray vision, Supergirl.

As they finally paid for their food, I could not help but think that as soon as she is able to, rat breeder would be knocked up again.  Children somehow made her feel complete.  I have friends who would love to have kids, who would make excellent parents.  For one reason or another, they don't have them.  Be it financial problems, medical, or just the fact that they haven't found the right partner (a huge deal when it comes to this sort of thing).  And yet here this human rat was, passing out kids as if she was on the toilet after a Taco Bell meal.  No thought to them.  No thought to the world she was bringing them into.  No thought at all.  "Shut up," she said at one time to one of the older boys.  "Mommy's trying to think."

I highly doubt that.

Twenty minutes in line behind these fine folks told me all I need to know.  Demanding without any justification.  Persecuted by a world of their own making.  Quick to get into someone's face if they think they've been fucked with because, you know, the whole world fucks with them.  Party hard.  Play hard.  Work?  When they can get it they sometimes show up.  The sperm donor, who has stuck around for God-knows-why cares more about how he looks than how the mother treats his spawns.  The grandfather is hoping for a girl for reasons less than wholesome. 

For twenty minutes they treated the Subway women like they were the lowest forms of life on the Earth.  They did their best to make them feel small because they were customers and these ladies, who obviously didn't know how to microwave chicken, were mere employees.  They had to listen to the breeders because they had the money.  The customer is always right.

For twenty minutes they felt good about themselves.  They felt good about being a collective pain in the ass to the Subway employees and everyone in line behind them.  No regards to the world around them.  No thought to the vague demands they were wielding.  No thought at all.

Can't even make an effort to get dressed, yet you are more important than anyone else.  Can't even make an effort to bathe your children and put them in clean clothes, and yet you make demands.   Can't even treat Subway workers with an ounce of respect, yet you expect people to move the fuck out of your way when you want to see a bread selection that hasn't changed in four years.

All I kept thinking was: Those kids are doomed.

Breed.  Like rats.