It's all a matter of perspective.

Thursday, August 15, 2002

As I mentioned yesterday, I am leaving at noon to go to Gulf Shores for a long weekend. That means that this is likely the last post until I get back. I will take a notebook and try to get some thoughts down to publish when I return. I especially hope to have a really funny story to tell on Pulley.

I hope your weekend looks like this!

Wednesday, August 14, 2002

If you are a regular reader of this blog then you know that I can not resist stories about breast milk or substance abuse. That is why I had to highlight this article in the Washington Post.

PITTSBURGH –– A judge accused of being drunk on the job and dropping his pants in public has agreed to resign, his attorney said.

Allegheny County Judge H. Patrick McFalls, 59, faced more than three dozen charges filed by the state's Judicial Conduct Board.

"Because much of the attention in this case involves matters fit for late-night comedy shows, the substance of the charges has been obscured by the extensive publicity and ridicule," attorney Robert Lampl said Tuesday. "It has become apparent that, both for the health of our client and out of respect for the judiciary, that it is in Judge McFalls' best interest to retire."

He is accused of being so drunk and disorderly that he was asked to leave a restaurant on Feb. 14. He was also accused of exposing his buttocks in mid-afternoon on a city street March 30 and charged with driving under the influence the same day.

In December, he was placed on paid leave after he was sued by three former staff members who said they were fired after reporting McFalls' alleged drinking problem and saying he had been drunk on the job.

On Feb. 5, McFalls reported his $60,000 Mercedes Benz stolen, but police found he had given it to a parking lot attendant who admired the car.
I have been trying to get registered for school today. That is one of the most frustrating things you can do. Since I am on the fifteen year college plan and I have sampled a smorgasbord of majors, I have completed all of the liberal arts requirements and I have all of the electives that I need. That means that I only need to take classes for my major (tech writing) and minor (history.) Anything else would be extraneous.

Well of the fifteen or so classes that I still have left to take, I was able to find exactly two that were scheduled when I can take them and still have open seats. Every single course number that I punched in would come back as “CLOSED COURSE” Even the telecourses and on-line courses. How do you run out of seats in a telecourse?

The good news is that Wylie and I might be able to graduate together.

So while I had that (and a very busy day at the office) working against me today, there are good things going on. First of all, Mark and I are having a wicked discussion in the comments section below in which we compare members of the two most recent presidential administrations to the characters on Dallas. This is the kind of dialog we need in this country.

Secondly, I am leaving for Gulf Shores tomorrow and I ain’t coming back until Tuesday night. Let me tell you, Ms. J and I are nigh ready for some vacation! We have not been out of town together for more than one night since our honeymoon five and a half years ago. There will be much eating and sleeping and reading, three things that you don’t get to do so much with the boy around the house. This is the perfect vacation for us. We are going to the beach, but neither of us are beach people (as I have noted on this site before, I have a fat hairy belly.) That means we will not have any activity that we feel like we need to do. It’s just going to be sitting on the patio of the condo, facing the Gulf of Mexico, with a stack of Nero Wolfe books and a bottomless glass of the old bee-double-oh-zee-ee!

And then next month, the boys are finally coming back to Memphis!
Norm Peterson and I have known this all along. Now our gut feelings have been corroborated by science. It turns out that beer is good for you.

After more than 20 years of research and scores of studies on the effects of moderate alcohol consumption on health, beer is slowly bubbling to the top as a beverage that not only lifts spirits but delivers protection against major ailments such as heart attacks, stroke, hypertension, diabetes and dementia.

If moderate consumption is healthy, imagine what gluttonous consumption would do for you!
Dave Shiflett writes on NRO about how people have historically feared the sun. He reports that it has been discovered that exposure to the sun can prevent many forms of cancer, but doubts this will change current attitudes about exposure.

A changed perspective won't come easy. Let us be frank: When was the last time anyone in a position of responsibility actually said something nice about the sun? Instead, it's always a warning or a complaint. One senses a fear that sun advocacy might lead to a class-action lawsuit; the shysters can't sue the sun itself, but in today's climate who would be surprised by a suit against suntan-oil companies, beach resorts, and perhaps George Hamilton IV and other prominent sun-worshippers?

Fear of the sun is also part of a larger habit of seeing danger everywhere: hamburgers, cigars, cocktails, salt, ice-cream cones, cellular telephones, coffee, power lines, electric blankets, hairdryers, internal combustion engines, water taps, supersized candy bars, strangers, uncles, priests, artificial sweeteners — don't get me started. Those who fear a Snickers Bar may have a hard time making peace with the sun.

Now a Little Rock based pilot has been fired for showing up to work drunk. I do not understand why anyone would show up drunk for a job that they expected to keep, but pilots are responsible for the lives of hundreds of people. It must take supreme confidence in your ability to hold your liquor to have a few at the bar and then go crank up a jet plane full of trusting rubes and fly to Charlotte.
Mark Currey: Love the Bush Pic. Did you take that yourself?

Nathaniel Greer: I wish. I stole it from the front page of

MC: It kicks ass. That is precisely why I voted for him. How stupid would Clinton look in a cowboy hat and shades?

NG: I can only agree. I thought it looked very Ewing-esque. The only thing that would have made it any hipper is if he had on a khaki safari shirt with lots of pockets instead of that gray T-shirt.

MC: I don't know, I liked the T-Shirt. Maybe a little Dusty Farlow in there.

MC: Or maybe good ol' Ray?

MC: ...Krebbs

NG: Ray was weak and not a real Ewing.

MC: I understand, it's just that I don't believe JR actually ever sat a horse. Maybe "W" has a bit of Jock in him. It's a tough call.
One thing is sure, though. If Cliff Barnes were as good with women as JR, he'd be Bill Clinton.

MC: . . . Maybe Jeb could be Bobby.

Tuesday, August 13, 2002

Mr. President,

First of all I hope that you are having a lovely vacation. I know how blistering it can be in Central Texas this time of the year and I hope that you are relaxing and beating the heat. Also allow me to congratulate you on how damn cool you look in a cowboy hat and sunglasses. No one has worn that look so well since J.R. Ewing had a liver transplant.

Now I have been doing some thinking. I have plenty of time to think between dating hot skinny models and waiting for my next movie to come out, and as we know, the opinions of celebrities in this country are learned and vital. I would like to offer a few simple proposals of things that our government could do to make life much happier in the heartland, a place that I have flown over many times while traveling from New York to L.A. or from L.A. to Rio de Janeiro.

The first thing that we have to do is save the environment. Now I live in Los Angeles and let me tell you that sometimes the smog is so bad that I have to forego a couple of cigarettes because I am having trouble breathing. Mr. Wizzard tells us that smog is from all the cars on the road. Just yesterday I loaded up in the back seat of my Lincoln Navigator to have my driver take me to Starbucks. Now my local Starbucks is only about a half a mile away, but it took us like thirty minutes to get there because of all the traffic. I could have walked there faster if I did not have to worry about all of the groupies attacking me. Besides, as I mentioned the air is smoggy and walking would have surely winded me. That is just too many cars. We should have some trains or something like they have over in London and France so that there would not be all those cars blocking out my Navigator. So that is my proposal, the federal government should provide lots of trains.

Another thing that the trains would solve, especially if you made them mandatory for most of the non-important people, would be the scourge of people driving while talking on cell phones. Now I do not have this problem, because as I mentioned I have a driver, but some of those stupid people out there are talking and driving and that is just not right. I have heard that is a very dangerous thing to do. They should be forced to hire a driver or face jail time. Once in prison, they could get the proper therapy that they need to overcome this addiction to endangering innocent celebrities.

Mr. President, now that I have admitted to having a cell phone, don’t think that you can get my digits. They are unlisted and only available to Victoria’s Secret models.

While we are talking about cars, there is something else that the government simply must address. It happens very often that I will be in a hurry to get to a nightclub to meet my posse and I will get stuck at a stop light. Well the light will turn green, but the car in front of me will wait a few seconds before it moves on. What blatant disrespect that is for me, an important movie star that is in a hurry. The government should mandate some kind of buzzer or something that goes off inside your car when a light changes to green. Or maybe these slowpokes should be forced to ride the Federal Trains if they are not going to get out of my way. I think it is so mean to honk at people, but I will sometimes tell my driver to do it if I think I might be late for my meeting at the Whiskey a Go-Go.

Don’t ask me how the government is going to pay for all of this. I am not very good with money myself. Lucky for me, I have more than I can spend so it is not a problem. Maybe you could raise the taxes on big evil corporations like Enron and the Red Cross. Maybe you could transfer some money from the military. Why do we need all those tanks anyway? When was the last time we had to use tanks on somebody? But the money thing will be for you to figure out. That is in your job description, and after all isn’t it the government’s job to take care of everybody?

Your friend and possible supporter,
Leo DiCaprio
This is a serious news report and not from The Onion. A Seattle company is planning to build a space elevator.
A new study shows that apes were able to develop conciousness and eventually evolve into humans through the use of halllucinogenic mushrooms.

There is a hidden factor in the evolution of human beings which is neither a 'missing link' nor a telos imparted from on high. Terence McKenna suggests that this hidden factor in the evolution of human beings, the factor which called human consciousness forth from a bipedal ape with binocular vision, involved a feedback loop with plant hallucinogens. This is not an idea that has been widely explored, though a very conservative form of this notion appears in R. Gordon Wasson's 'Soma: Divine Mushroom of Immortality' (Wasson, 1971). Wasson does not comment on the emergence of human-ness out of primates, but does suggest hallucinogenic mushrooms as the causal agent in the appearance of spiritually aware human beings and the genesis of religion.

The state of consciousness would provide a reason for foraging humans to return repeatedly to those plants, in order to re-experience their bewitching novelty. The primate gains increased visual acuity and access to the transcendent Other, ever more novel information and sensory input and behaviour, and thus is bootstrapped to higher and higher states of self-reflection.

Hallucinogenic plants may have been the catalysts for everything about us that distinguishes us from other primates except perhaps the loss of body hair. Recall, projective imagination, language, naming, magical speech, dance, and a sense of religion may have emerged out of this interaction.

Monday, August 12, 2002

A song made up of alternating and random couplets from Poison and Skid Row’s first albums:

She was a ballerina on a subway train
Stiletto heels and a candy cane
Remember the nights we sat and talked about all our dreams
They were more distant than they seemed
I made my move with my libido on
She circled once and then she dropped the bomb
Long legs and short skirts
These girls hit me where it hurts

I met a sidewalk preacher on a roller skate
He said he had the key to heaven's gate
Grab my hat and I grab my shoes
Tonight I'm gonna hit the streets and cruise
Life ain't no easy ride at least that's what I'm told
Sometimes the rainbow baby is better than the pot of gold
I'll wait for the movie 'cause I been there before
And learned: life is a battle and love is war

One night I caught her running out the cellar door
There was about a million people lying flat on the floor
I went to bed too late and got up too soon
My poor head still spinnin' from too much booze
Every quittin' time is another disease
Too many cowboys ridin' high shootin' low at the knees
No tell, motel, hotel bed
If it wasn't for the sunlight I'd swear I was dead

I never seen you look so good
You never act the way you should
Good God, bless my soul
I need a fix of rock 'n roll
All my friends are two faced
And I'm a social disgrace
Tequila in his heartbeat, His veins burned gasoline.
It kept his motor running but it never kept him clean.

Mama, please let me go to the show
I dig those bad boys playing that rock and roll
Since I was born they couldn't hold me down
Another misfit kid, another burned-out town
The noose gets tighter around my throat
But I ain't at the end of my rope
I need a chance just to get away
If you could hear me think this is what I'd say

She goes down slow like a shot of gin
She's got an angel's face and the devil's grin
In the heat of the night is when she comes alive
She's gonna push you push you til she's satisfied
I'm on your footsteps and I wait behind your back
I spread like fire upon the streets I'm ready to attack
Only in the evening at night I come alive
So try to keep your passion deep I need it to survive

Baseball fans to doff more than caps for Traficant night

NILES, Ohio (AP) -- Fans who go to the Mahoning Valley Scrappers minor-league baseball game on Wednesday should ditch the glove and take a toupee.

The Class-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians has made August 14 "Jim Traficant Night," and hairpiece wearers and sons of truck drivers get in free.

The former Ohio congressman, serving an eight-year prison sentence for bribery and racketeering, often calls himself "the son of a truck driver."

His gravity-defying hairstyle caused rampant speculation among journalists and residents on whether it was real or a rug, until he had to doff it for booking.

The baseball event also features a Traficant impersonator, Traficant trading cards and a mock election.

"Former Congressman Traficant played a vital role in attracting the franchise to the Mahoning Valley," general manager Andy Milovich said. "We felt a Jim Traficant Night would show our sincere gratitude for his efforts."

The House expelled Traficant in July, but he says he'll run for a 10th term from jail.
Two bigfoot sightings near my home town.