Random Acts of WeirdnessWell That Explains A Lot - I've asked myself time and time again how the hell the Crawford Crapweasel could get elected - TWICE! Now it appears there is a scientifically verifiable answer.
Somebody's Been in the Radiation Container Again - I think seeing this is what prompted the Religious Right to work out that whole Creationism thing. I guess they figured Darwinism was just too scary.
Have a Nice Day - I think this guy had a bad experience with the Walmart smiley face.
Not Your Kid's Stuffed Animal - You saw them on CSI, now delve into the crazy world of "The Furries".
What's the Buzz? - Somehow this is oddly compelling, but for the life of me, I have no idea why.
Hitler Was a Big Fat Pootiehead - Bed wetter, drug addict, and man with a single gonad. As Adolph and Shrub show, you really don't have to have much goin' for you to become the consummate dictator.
Go Slugs! - The mascot for the University of California at Santa Cruz is a banana slug, yet he doesn't show up anywhere on this list. Odd, but true.
Is This Chicken of the Sea? - Apparently Jessica Simpson knows as much about dating a she does about canned tuna. Behold as the light over her head comes on.
Pet Rock Redux - Sticks and stones can break my bones, but not if they're really soft and expensive.
It's a Bitch Getting Older - Now I know what they all do down at Kryptonite Kabin, the assisted living home for super heroes.
Blonde Ambition - It must be a bitch to take the drapes to Supercuts to have them hemmed. And if that's not hairy enough, try this or this on for size.
Take That You Evil Troll! - Video games are apparently not as relaxing as some people think.
OH NO! Mikey Feel in the Toilet Again! - It's hell trying to clean up a rug rat who's been on the toilet floor, just ask Ubermilf Britney Spears.
Home on the Range - Home, home on the raaaaaange, where the aardvark and jackalope plaaaaaay!
Spyin' on You - So this is how Robert Gates got picked for CIA Director.
The Facts of Life - The folks at Planned Parenthood have chipped in to develop a sex guide (NSFW) that even asshat virgin evangelicals can understand.
The F-Word - We got yer L-Words, N-Words, and F-Words (NSFW).
Random Acts of Destruction - Anime. Bicycles. Cars. What could go wrong?
The Case for Anorexia - Watching these people is just enough to make you lose your lunch.
The Pants Whisperer - Somehow, this (NSFW) just makes me all tingly down there.
Hunka, Hunka, Creamy Chocolate - Elvis sighted in Hershey, PA!
In the NAAAAAVEEEE, In the NAAAAAVEEEE! - Put another swabbie on the barbie mate!
Stuffin' It - Is that a sock in your pocket or are you just glad to see her?
Land of the Waking Ugly - Zombie discrimination, film at 11!
Did the Earth Move for You? - "A commotion of grunts and squeaks, flashing unconnected images and explosions of a million little particles."
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Thursday, November 30, 2006
Devil Yes. Silver-Tongued? Not So MuchFor a man so poorly spoken, Commandante Blockhead has a penchant for building his own private lexicon. For months now, talking heads have debated BushCo's extreme aversion to the term "civil war". There's been incessant discussion over whether we're "teetering on the brink", "weeks away from", or already in a "deepening civil war".
Of course, it's not the first time the country has faced such weighty matters of lexicography. We've debated words like "incursion", "police action", and "low intensity warfare" plenty of times before, but they've always amounted to the same thing - something other than the raging war du jour to talk about. Think of these discussions as the linguistic equivalent of a tiresome debate over the merits of a flag burning amendment - as worthless a discussion as there can be.
It seems to me that no matter whether it's a looming civil war, full-scale civil war - or as Jon Stewart put it - a faith-based melee, the bullet that kills the poor sod who's at the wrong place at the wrong time rips the skin in the same way. It makes the academic discussions over what to call the killing as moronic as they are. Imagine trying to define a specific amount a victim can be killed - "just a wee bit killed" or "eviscerated beyond belief. Either way, the victim is one unlucky sumbitch.
This weekend, the media apparently did a little soul searching and are tentatively coming out in favor of "civil war" to describe the War of Error. I can't imagine that George Daniel Webster likes this turn of events. He's clung to the idea that no "real" war was taking place as tightly as Leonardo Di Caprio clung to a life ring from the Titanic. Now that a "real" war has broken out how will he and his crack team of etymologists spin it?
Call in the Fightin' 101st Keyboardists! These are battle conditions lads! Pass the malaprops and man the parapets! Tony Snow has one helluva snow job to shovel. Maybe he should call in Karen Hughes - you know - since the Arab world loves us so much now that her fine work as Ambassador of Confusion and Misinformation has so pacified them.
I expect they'll continue to insist that the FUBAR in Falluja still isn't a war, but just a sign that the insurgents are in the last throes of collapse. He and Sicky Dick can tell because they have those pesky A-rabs right where they want them, standing over us with their boots on our neck and a Kalishnakov to our temple. Speaking in Orwellian tongues is so natural to this crowd they long ago lost the sense of irony the words carry or care whether people believe them or not. So as the warlike whatchamacallit worsens, we'll find the cabal down at the "liebary" looking up synonyms for all they're worth, ready to blaze new trails in language and despair.
Sometimes it just makes you long for the days when language wasn't a lead box to shield radioactive crapitude from the public discourse. Even Nixon called the break-in at the Watergate a break-in. People would have laughed his crooked ass off the public stage if he'd called it a "low-intensity, high-value intelligence incursion" - but not the Thesauri of Crawford. He gaze admiringly as so finely a turned phrase. He has no such compunction when it comes to hiding behind words. He'll lay them on nice and thick, even if he can't properly pronounce them.
It's a good thing that Bush Library - an oxymoron if I've ever heard one - is slated to be the largest and grandest of these Presidential Pyramids to Poppycock. It will have to hold lots and lots of words.
Even of none of them do make any sense.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Tuesday, November 28, 2006
As We See It: Poison Thine Enemies Edition
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Saturday, November 25, 2006
On Losing a Friend
A few years back I had heart surgery after a trip to the doctor for a plugged ear surprisingly morphed into a stress-test and trip to the hospital. During an angiogram, the doctor found two blockages - one blood vessel 50% plugged and the other 99%. He didn't run the scope through my 100% blocked right ear, but I wished at the time that he had. It was bugging the hell out of me.
As I watched the borescope traverse my heart on a big screen monitor, the doctor pointed to my innards and offered advice on the things he could do and things he couldn't. Together, we decided that even though he could repair both blockages with angioplasties, he couldn't guarantee that one of them - the 50 percenter - wouldn't clog again.
When I asked how I'd know if it blocked again, his answer was, "You'll have a heart attack." I decided to have the bypasses right then, on the table. Waiting for a heart attack didn't strike me as a particularly good method of risk management.
I didn't really give the decision much thought. In fact, I viewed it as just one more everyday event in a bumptious, careening life. I went home. I had a nice weekend, and reported back for my surgery on Monday afternoon. The Omnipotent Dad flew cross-country to be by my side while my calmness distressed Mrs. Poobah.
I had the surgery, but afterward, I had none of those "A-HA!" moments that signaled a new perspective on life. No great revelations about staring down death or feeling the beauty of each day I'd snatched away from the grim reaper. After a shorter than average recovery period, I simply went back to doing what I'd been doing before.
After a few months, I noticed that my memory wasn't quite as sharp as it used to be. I'd always been able to recall thousands of trivial bits of information at the drop of a hat.
What's the best way to kill flies? Aim slightly behind them, because they jump backwards to take off. How many rooms are in the White House? That would be 132. Who was the voice in the TV sitcom - My Mother the Car? Ann Southern. And for bonus points, she played opposite Jerry Van Dyke. Mr. Ed "talked" because they slathered peanut butter on his lips, Peter Jennings never finished grade school, and the first person to achieve controlled flight was Brazilian Alberto Santos-Dumont (the Wright bothers were the first to achieve controlled powered flight).
Suddenly, I found my vast store of knowledge frustratingly difficult to access. I began to forget names of people I'd known for years - while I was talking to them. I forgot what I was supposed to buy at the grocery and forgot to run errands, finish small details of everyday life, or go to doctor's appointments. While these things weren't happening often enough to become unmanageable, they were still pains in my gigantic omnipotent ass.
One day I realized that I'd begun to have trouble reading, not a lot, but just enough to make it less satisfying. Of all the things that happened, this was the main event.
Before the surgery I'd been a life-long, voracious reader. It was a happy compulsion for me. I frequently read books in a single sitting. My tastes ran the gamut from classics to noir. Newspapers, magazines, and the backs of shampoo bottles. It didn't matter. It was all interesting to me. Reading had always been a refuge from a troubled life. It as a way to transport myself to some place that was more appealing, whether that place was staring death in the eye by running the Amazon or sitting on a front porch in the warm Georgia sun.
And it was a shocking capability to lose.
My doctors and all suspected the surgery. I learned that people who had the type of surgery I'd had sometimes develop minor memory loss or diminishment of their attention spans. The doctors sympathized that my developments could be frustrating, but that I was generally OK and that it wouldn't get any worse.
And it hasn't.
I can cope with not being able to recall trivia at will. It doesn't really matter that the White House has 132 rooms when I can recall that one of them is inhabited by a congenital idiot. Forgetting a name isn't so bad. When it happens, I compensate or fess-up that I've forgotten and chalk it up to having a "senior moment". Sometimes I even get a laugh out of it.
But the loss of books as a favored companion is tough.
I still go to bookstores and look at the racks. There are plenty of titles to interest me. I'm still on the lookout for the odd title like, A Wolverine is Eating My Leg, or favored author like Steinbeck, Kerouac, or Russo. But the experience is like a recovering alcoholic in a liquor store. You can stare longingly at the graceful necks of the bottles, but you know that's about as far is it can go.
I haven't read an entire book in over a year, George Orwell's Homage to Catalonia. It was so difficult, the starts and stops spread into a 6-month long ordeal. I finally finished the book, but only by force of will and a disjointed journey that made it unpleasant.
I can still master some reading. Since I'm a writer, I read a lot at work - though it's not the most scintillating stuff. I can manage a blog posting. Newspapers still work and magazine articles do too - if they aren't too long. I still get a little charge over reading the ingredients on the back of a cereal box or the chemical names on the backs of shampoo bottles. Old habits die hard.
But books? Fugedaboutit.
Don't get me wrong. On the whole, the surgery was a success. I might not be here today without it. I'd have lost other, more important pleasures, like seeing the Poobette grow up, spooning with Mrs. Poobah, or stroking the dog and hearing her groan in pleasure.
But losing the books? That's tough. Really tough. Like losing a close friend.
So that's why I chose this topic today - so you could read it and I could read vicariously through you.
It's a neat trick, but it's still not the same - like margarine isn't butter.
BTW, did you know that margarine was invented because of a request from Napoleon's personal chef? He developed it because butter always spoiled on long campaigns.
I learned that from a book you know.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Friday, November 24, 2006
Thanksgiving: Miranda Says It All
I mean, if there was no
world, we would probably
be dead, floating around in space.
No offense Mars and Venus, but
we can live on Earth."
Miranda LaBounty, Age 8
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Thursday, November 23, 2006
Randomness XL StyleI've come home early today to be with you, my loyal readers. I also came home because I'm tired and this is my tenth consecutive day of work. I will have tomorrow off, but then will pick up again on Friday and continue for another 14 uninterrupted days. After that, we'll see. Someone has to make the Bush economic miracle real - it's just incredibly sad it must be me.
So having few fully functional brain cells left, I will take the usual cop-out of the scattered brains among us and introduce yet another scintillating edition of Randomness XL Style.
So Perky, Yet So Kinky - You saw her here, roasting the Thanksgiving bird in a sports bra and apron, but it looks like Mr. Rachael Ray may be dressing her in a different sort of costume
OH, SHUT THE @*)%^&$%^$ UP! - Janice, over at Cow Hampshire, was kind enough to put us onto this site. From what I can tell, this one's infinitely more eloquent and erudite than the real thing and it definitely answers the question, "Which is smarter, man or machine?" Well, smarter than this man anyway.
Behold Rodin's Flinging Children at Daybreak! - I have to admit that statues of old guys on horseback and naked guys contemplating their feet aren't my sculptural cup of tea, but these? These are statues I could get behind - provided they get a high rating.
T-Giving at the Cheney's - The Big Dick likes to go off for the occasional drunken hunting trip, so it got us wondering if maybe Lynne will be cooking up some Old Republican Donator brisket this Thanksgiving. We hear the Dick is partial to the cajun flavor.
Vee Haff Vays Uf Makink You Laff - I once had a boss who was dubbed the Commandant of Fun because of her penchant for giggles when they were least appropriate. Now, it appears, we'llsoon have a whole nation of Tittering Teutons.
Aw Grandma, Not Again - My own dear grandmother was an inmate at a state hospital, but I have to say that even in her psychotic moments, she couldn't top this old gal.
Snip, Snip, Snip - There are many things that boys like to do in large groups. I bet this is not one of them.
This Brief, Calming Interlude Courtesy of the Poobah - Need to relax? We do. And when we do, we stop here.
Unclear on the Concept - I'm sure this took all kinds of technical wizardry - probably some of it produced by geeky guys who spend too much time at International Federation of Trekkers meetings - but doesn't it just defeat the whole purpose?
The Spam Strikes Back - You've seen all those emails from Mattie Gongo or Hortense Horseradish, you might as well join the fun. Just don't run afoul of Johnny Law.
Those Clever Irish - Never underestimate the power of a stout Irishman, a power saw, and a pint of Guinness. Tip of the hat to Coyote for the laugh.
Miz Scarlett Don't Know Nothin' 'Bout Birthin' No Babies - What more can I say? Lovin' like cats and dogs.
Changing a Baby Isn't All Spritz and Glory - Another in a long line of things I wish I'd thought of first. Moms and Dads, take note.
The Day Bambi's Mom Rose From the Dead - Put away the hankerchieves, everything turned out OK for Bambie and Mom after all.
Signs the Internet is Becoming Too Powerful - Flickr is dead! Long live Flickr!
The Power of Selling Nothing - That's cute and all, but didn't your clients get mad when you delivered this instead of the consulting report they hired you for?
Darwin May Not Be Right, But He Gets Even - Apparently, Virgin Marys and toast-born Jesuses no longer corner the market on odd stain sightings. Take that Creationism!
Hey Babe...Buy Ya a Drink? - I'd guess that if you need a class in this sort of stuff, you probably aren't the chick magnet you think you are.
Beer + Glasses = Big Fun - Cap'n, are ye' on the lookout fer a set o'these on yer fair vessel?
Nice Place, But Not Much Curb Appeal - I just love a place full of interesting little knick-knacks, don't you?
I'll Blow in Your Ear and Then Bite It - This was an unbelievably great story that unfortunately turned out to be a rumor. What the hell, let's spread it anyway, that's what rumors are for.
Come On, Just One More for the Information Superhighway! - Finally, a contest that memorializes the greatness that was Foster Brooks. No more fitting a memorial could any man imagine...(hick).
Preaching to Someone Other Than the Choir - There's hell, and then there's hell.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Wednesday, November 22, 2006
New! From Regan Publishing
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Sunday, November 19, 2006
A Opposum for Our TimesIf there is one thing that both conservatives and liberals can agree on, it's that politics has become such a corrosive, toxic affair that only fools would voluntarily enter into it. And with that, we see a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Despite the high-minded ideals of the Founding Fathers, politics has always drawn more than it's fair share of crackpots and crapweasels. Our history is rife with politicos who ranged from the merely buffoonish to the downright scandalous and dangerous. Some have even managed to win a moronic trifecta consisting of all three. As a nation, we always sit around wondering how the hell such a bunch of miscreants could have made it into public office.
The answer, of course, is that we voted them in. That's the dangerous and dirty secret of democracy, it's garbage in, garbage out. Along comes a charismatic asshat and we suddenly find ourselves adrift in a sea of slingworthy mud.
The reason we like to give is that it is someone else's fault. The current whipping boy is "the media". Our venom for the Fourth Estate is a Koolaid so powerful we've divided it into more manageable segments in order to accommodate all the blame.
The MSM (mainstream media) takes the biggest hit. Conservatives hate the MSM because their penchant for finding every little flaw and magnifying it out of proportion is destroying their God-sanctioned chosen ones. Lefties hate the MSM for the opposite. They don't ask the tough questions or follow the money back to the source of all evil, the republicans.
Then, we have the media who claim they aren't the media even though they use the media to broadcast their spew. Rush Limbaugh begat Ann Coulter while the left fields stars like Randi Rhodes. The main purpose of the anti-media elite is to whip up the base using the studio echo chamber as their primary weapon. Political Darwinism has run amok and truth has evolved into truthiness, where half-truths and obfuscation vie with outright lies and shouting uber alles to feed the gaping maw of the ratings monster.
Where the hell is political creationism when you need it?
Finally, we have the blogosphere. It has evolved from the idea of a free and open exchange of ideas and democracy to a bubbling cauldron of shite. This is where the truly scary live. It's full of the nuttiest of wingnuts and the battiest of moonbats where every nutcase with a computer feels obliged to offer their screaming opinion in language so harsh Rush and Randy look like the leaders of a fairness in media campaign.
Every once in awhile, the sewage we freely splash on ourselves stinks so horribly that we blame someone else - the very politicians we elected. We rise up as a nation, banded together by nothing more than a visceral need to eviscerate, and cut the carbuncles from the body politic. Then we proceed to sew up the incisions with the contaminated thread of the opposite party. Overbearing and corrupt democrats birthed the Contract on America crowd. They devolved into a scandal prone bunch of asshats who listen only to the voice of God - transmitted by earthly idgits who'd scare the hell out of the Big Guy if he knew what they were saying in his name.
Winning is the only credo, so damn the country and full-lie ahead.
Unfortunately, the new regime will wind up in the same place a few years from now. While George stays on in a Bubble House where he fanaticizes he still holds the absolute power he enjoyed not so long ago, Pelosi's first few acts included a personal slap at Stenny Hoyer and the nomination of war hero, but scandal-plagued, John Murtha. All the while, there was the steady bray from the barking dogs of partisan warfare.
Nothing would please me more than if all of the current "leaders" magically straightened up a flew right, but I'm just not a power of positive thinking sort of guy. I'd be equally pleased if we all united as one just once more, rose up, and replaced our current bumps on the proverbial log with rational people who spoke with an "inside voice" and respected opposing views. People who didn't deeply believe that compromise is the dirtiest word in the English language. But, I'm not holding my breath on that one either.
I'd be most impressed if we all stopped shooting the most convenient messenger and did a little soul-searching of ourselves. If we were truthful instead of truthy, we'd see that Pogo had it right, "We have met the enemy and he is us."
I realize I'm taking wisdom from a cartoon opossum in an imaginary swamp here, but you have to cling to something. So I vote foursquare in favor of electing Pogo and letting him run the show.
We couldn't be any worse off than we are now.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Saturday, November 18, 2006
Off the Grid RandomnessI've been off the grid the past few days. Life, as it inevitably does, came between me and the pleasures of life. Damn that lotto not coming in! There will be more off the griddedness in the upcoming week too, but one can have everything.
Although I'm bursting with good ideas - e-voting, class distinctions and economics, legal immigration, and a real James Bond story, to name a few - I'm taking the easy road tonight with another edition of randomness...off the grid randomness.
Play Ball! - Sure baseball season is over, but there are still balls to consider. Take these balls for inistance.
The War of Error - You know you've screwed the pooch one too many times when someone turns your failures into a video game.
OOOOOHHHHH! - I'll sit on anything for a dollar is my favorite. Is that you Always Aroused Girl (NSFW)?
Go Easy on the Boy, Will Ya - And they think we have harsh penalties for sex offenders.
The Won't Have Rummy to Rhymey Around Anymore - Poetry and Donald Rumsfeld. Two things you may never hear mentioned together again. Thank God!
My Vote for This Year's Pulitzer - And they say the New York Post doesn't do distinguished journalism.
I Call Him the Error-in-Chief - Under Nixon, you knew you had arrived when you got an invitation to the "enemies list". With the Chimpinator, it's a nickname. Welcome aboard Shithead.
Hey Crapo, Crapo Italiano... - Well, they could have crapped on your doorstep instead.
What a Bum! - Some people have crazy mad butt sex, others...well, they're not too clear on the idea of explosive orgasms.
Giving Faux News a Run for Their Rummy - News, meet lunacy.
Yumm, Yummm - I bet Andy Griffith never did this to Otis.
Shat Sings Shit - William Shatner IS the Rocketman!
Miss Manners: The Global Edition - I'm surprised that giving the German Chancellor a backrub while talking with a mouthful of dinner roll isn't on here.
Another Round of Scudpuppies for the Whole Bar! - The name's Scudfish. The game's...um, I don't know, but it's cool.
Tiptoe Through the Barbed Wire... - I say we call 'em the Fightin' Tiny Tims!
OK, You Busted Us - The wingnuts threw a lot of barbs our way during the election, but we won. To be fair, we might as well face up to the true left wing moonbat agenda.
Bill Gates Gets Into Everything - Just the thing for the person on the go...to nowhere.
Bright Smile! - Crest, now approved by four out of five fetishists.
Another Hi-Tech Tool in the War of Error - Just type w...h...e...r...e...'s o...s...a...m...a.
Where Were You on the Night of July Fourth? - Endorsed by leading conservatives Neil Cavuto and Tucker Carlson. Coincidence? We think not.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Friday, November 17, 2006
It's All the Democrats' Fault!It seemed like such a quaint little scene last week when Miz Nancy and Shrub met for tea and cucumber sandwiches at the White House. Although the pair both gritted their teeth like crazy mad dental victims, they managed to croak all the right words about bipartisanship and joining hands across the political divide that's riven the country.
Then, before anyone could shed a tear over such powerful and appropriate words, the opening salvos of the new political war began.
Fire One! A renomination coo-coo-cachu for John "I Am the Walrus" Bolton. The emperor couldn't get a vote the first time around, so he recess appointed Bolton to his job as Ambassador of Dismantlement at the UN. Lincoln Chaffee - freshly whipped in his reelection bid - immediately announced he wouldn't support the nomination, just like he hadn't supported it the first time. The newly democrat-dominated committee then fired its shots across Captain Bunnypant's bows and he - as is normal - chugged right on ahead, aiming for the big iceberg on the horizon.
Fire Two! A vote on illegal wiretapping. Democrats = Nay, Bush = Yea...WAHOO! The result of this warning shot? All ahead 2/3s and damn the iceberg! "It's nothin' but a gol darned ice cube anyway!"
Fire Three! Dumbya completed his asshat trick by intimating that Iraq commission or not, he plans to stick to his trusty - but empty - six shooter on Iraq.
It looks like the iceberg's coming up fast, filling the windows the windows on the bridge of the USS Bushbomb. There promises to be a heart-rending crunch, the sound of screeching metal, and rapidly rising waters that will swamp the bipartisan lifeboat both parties find themselves confined to. A result that the fed up electorate clearly showed was unacceptable last week.
Why would Shrub charge into an immovable object? Well, aside from the fact that he has all the perception of your average tree stump, the aim is to create the very same gridlock he bemoaned with a mouthful of cucumber and tea last week. He's betting that things will slow from a crawl to a dead stop while he and the cabal accuse the dems of turning the "Do Nothin' Congress" into the "Even More Do Nothin'' Congress".
Will the electorate - which somehow managed to grow some balls for the first time in six years - push back and tell Baby Doc, "Not so fast there you impetuous young whippersnapper"? Time will tell, but this electorate hasn't shown itself to have a facile mind or a quick finger on the Diebold. Make no mistake, gridlock will ensue and you can bet that Karl will be chatting up Rush about those evil Islamo-lovers having the terrorists over for dinner.
Nancy, you'd better put down the sandwich and put on the mailed glove.
This is going to be a cage match royale by the time we all limp into 2008, pounded mercilessly by the ill-winds thrown up by the scuffle. This match will require more than head butts and perhaps biting off a chunk of Bush's ear. It will require unusual finesse, plenty of bobbing and weaving, and the ability to throw a knock out punch when it's least expected.
Nancy, you're small, but feisty. Let's hope you're very smart too.
You go girl. You go.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Monday, November 13, 2006
No Day at the Beach
The sun rose this morning full of light and fury. The sky burned. The blue was ice. The clouds were an armada ablaze, sailing over the horizon. It was the kind of morning I usually live for. This morning, nothing - and yet, something.
Sometimes I have days like this. I get out of bed to meet the day and find my soul muddled and confused. I feel stuck at the crossroads of listless excitement and crystal-clear confusion. I'm equally torn between an unnatural craving to act and a heavy inertia that locks my feet to the earth like iron to a magnet. My mind races, even though it's full of nothing. I spend long minutes staring into space and seeing little but a big empty, only to emerge later full of questions and ideas.
My skin crawls and itches like an ill-fitting suit. I'm a split personality - one side obsessive and manic, the other lax and slothful - unable to do anything with the energy trapped within except weather it like a storm. I'm on a tightrope, experiencing the sensation of falling while knowing full well it won't happen. My mind is full of smoke and mirrors. I know nothing unordinary is happening in the physical world, but my head is a teeming city with all the confusion that comes with any mental megalopolis.
Thinking seriously about anything - work or lunch or feeding the dog - is impossible. Diversions don't work. The television makes only a white noise. Reading is beyond comprehension. I'm uninterested in talking. I'm reduced to breathing and carrying on other involuntary functions and not much else.
Many people have suggested meditation - something I struggle with even when I'm whole and focused - at times like this. I try it as an experiment, knowing where it will lead.
I imagine myself on a beach. The sun hangs in the sky. The waves make the perfect sound of the womb. The beach is whiter than white. I imagine my right big toe and how I must relax it. I allow it to float in the baby-bath warm water. It feels good, but it isn't calming.
Undeterred, I press on.
The back of my right leg cushes softly in the sand. I can feel the warmth and smell the pungent ocean smell. And slowly, almost imperceptibly, the cush on my leg turns to grit. The sand accumulates and scratches at me. I fight an overwhelming urge to stand up and brush it off. The itch eats at me like a thousand tiny sand flies. With supreme will, I force the itch from my mind and begin again.
First, the toe. Yes, very good. I can feel the warmth. It feels silky and good on my skin.
Next the right leg. I again reach the point where I feel the soft cush, but this time my mind wanders away from the skritching. I begin to image how many billions of grains of sand lie on this imaginary beach. I begin to imagine them, grain by gain by grain. As I do, they pile up. I count faster, they flow on to the beach like the sands of an hourglass. I count faster still and the wind picks them up and swirls them around me. I keep counting, faster and faster while the wind picks up and the sands blow, and I lose count again and again.
The meditation takes me to the uncomfortable place it always takes me - high agitation and monumental frustration. I concentrate on reversing the course of the sand. I slowly calm the storm, back the feeling down my leg, and arrive where I started with my right big toe in the warm and silky salt water. It's all I can manage and will have to be enough today.
The day wears on. No big troubles. No hefty depression. Just sort of a low background of radio noise, punctuated by a minor frustration or an ill-thought here or there. Certainly not bad enough to make it impossible to overcome, but it does require a steady stroke and strong kick as I swim against its tide.
I'll be tired tonight, but I won't sleep.
And then, there will be tomorrow.
Therapy morning and a late trip to work on a day I usually work from home. I don't look forward to it. I'll fight it when it comes. But, I'll do it. I almost always do. If it's a good day, my frustration will subside as the day goes on and the routine of solving problems and thinking about work will slowly reorganize my mind. If it's a very good day, the process will be almost complete by day's end. I'll be able to fully function again. The frustrations will only exist as a little gray schmutz on my psyche. I'll be flat, but for me, that's normal. In fact, all of this is quite normal.
At least for me.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Sunday, November 12, 2006
Veteran's Day 2006
A headless man is running
down the street
He is carrying his head
in his hands
A woman runs after him
She has his heart
in her hands
The bombs keep falling
And they keep running
down the streets
Not the same two people
but thousands of others &
from the bombs that keep falling
sowing pure hate
And for every bomb that's
up spring a thousand Bin Ladens
a thousand new terrorists
Like dragons teeth sown
From which armed warriors
Crying for blood
As the smart bombs sowing
Keep falling and falling and
-- Lawrence Ferlinghetti, 2003
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Saturday, November 11, 2006
After the StormPolitics is like a line of advancing hurricanes over the Atlantic. Each storm chugs along in it's own meandering way. Some run out of steam, others come ashore in some hapless place to flatten the houses of the innocent and arrogant alike.
This week's storm was a doozy.
After weeks of predictions, the storm gained strength, ran quickly up the Potomac, and came ashore at Capitol Hill as a full-blown Category 5 monster. The wind and the waves were terrifying. Many a boat went awash. Roofs peeled away like kindling. Fat old white guys, in three-piece suits, flew through the air like cheesy special effects in a bad disaster movie. The fierce winds lashed the place for 48 hours like a demonic Big Bad Wolf, bloviating for all he was worth.
Then the wind died and the survivors took stock.
Those who lost the most crawled out from under the wreckage, squinted into the newly bright sun, and wondered what had become of their fine Georgetown houses. They looked tattered and in shock standing around in their torn suits. One was missing a $500 wingtip. Another floated in the Mall's Reflecting Pool, held afloat by an expensive Italian briefcase. A few staggered over to K St. in search of help from special friends, perhaps a nice lunch at a good restaurant or a golf trip to help calm their frazzled nerves.
But all they found were deserted offices. A castoff black hat bounced down the empty street in a weak and dirty breeze.
The winners stood up equally shocked. Most of them looked not much worse for wear. They were intact if a little frazzled and tired. It seemed the shit squalls of bad behavior and outrageous lies had washed over them and merely dirtied their suits. A nice quiet bath and a good meal would restore them to health.
Within hours, the losers clustered and began to fight amongst themselves, each blaming the other for the losses of the storm. A few - too tired to argue - simply limped away, unable to face the harsh reality drying in the heat of the fresh sun. Others, protected by special impermeable bubbles, began throwing out the bespectacled detritus they had clung to so recently. They set the table and invited some of the more important winners over for finger sandwiches and tea. They told them through clenched teeth what a fine thing they had done to survive. They promised fidelity and ruminated on how winners and losers must come together and march united into the future.
The winners, for their part, stopped calling the losers bad names and politely ate their sandwiches while nodding in agreement and smiling the anguished smile of someone who would rather be almost anywhere else.
In the end, the town survived. The damage could all be cleared away. No one died and the ones who'd been injured judiciously withdrew to lick their wounds.
I'd like to think the story ends here, with a big sunset and the main characters strolling hand-in-hand into the future. But unlike the science of predicting major storms, the science of predicting political behavior is precise.
We all know that as soon as they walk offscreen, they'll disentangle themselves and leap at one another, teeth bared and fighting furiously for the upper hand. The K Streeters will return and place huge bets on the fight. The Congress will return to the name calling and brinksmanship where labeling something bipartisan is the strongest guarantee that it isn't. Smoke will once again fill the backrooms. Up will once again become down and down will once again point up.
And off on the horizon, still fuzzy and indistinct, is another storm. It's starting it's journey from the desert sands of the Middle East. Soon it will cross over water, gain strength, and start its meandering march across the Atlantic. When it reaches the Potomac shore, the promised levees and flood control will remain unbuilt because funding went to a bridge to nowhere. The congressional yachts moored at the Anacostia Yacht Club will bob in the gathering wind, and another wild storm will begin anew.
Life, like the weather, goes on. It's funny that way.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Friday, November 10, 2006
No Brain RandomnessMomentous events, too momentous to grasp after a long and confusing day when I screwed the pooch with a big mistake and was hectored at every turn. So, on with a no-brainer post - more randomness:
Care to Take a Stroll? - I'm sure the true believers of the Flying Spaghetti Monster will claim otherwise, but could this be an example of Darwinism on the march?
Bass-O-Matic Makes Triumphant Return - Every bar needs one of these. Gimme a frozen margarita, extra nuts and bolts please.
Hopefully, They'll Throw 'Em at Sensenbrenner - They reaaaaaally know how to have fun in America's Dairyland. Thanks and a tip o'the miter to Cow Hampshire.
Tipping the Cow Fantastic... - It's sinister. It's graphic. It's chilling. It's...COW ABDUCTION!
Not So Weird - This is one of those things that isn't so much weird as it is cool and kinda of endearing. So is this. This makes me want to play a quick game of "I'm crushing your head!"
Eurocash Turns Into Eurocrap - They may make fine cars in Europe, but their money? Not so much.
Yes Officer, That's Him - Stupid smirk. Sounds like he's chewing cowshit. Tries to get cash by turning the gun on himself. Yup, it must be him!
Turnabout is Fair Play - Letter carriers can do it, why not the local wildlife. Behold the squirrel who went postal!
Thou Shalt Not Put Yourself Out - Too tired to put yourself out? Fatima, Portugal not convenient this year? Come on down! We offer double frequent prayer points with every booking.
Always Low Prices! - A great place for the thrifty terrorist to shop.
Dancin' to the Groove - Those crazy CPAs sure do know how to have a good time, don't they?
The Vagina Monologues by the Labial Literati (NSFW) - I love a personal letter, don't you?
Hamhocks? World Peace? - Imagine some pork with your side-order of whirled peas.
So Soft, So Fluffy, So Tasty - Lock up the kittens, the Big Dick is out hunting again!
Obligatory K-Fed/Britney Post - Britney tells K-Fed, "Eat me!".
Cops Yokohama - "Bad boys, bad boys...whatcha gonna do, watcha do when they're raw for you?"
Meet George Jetson - And there's a really cool place for Judy and Elroy to hang out with their friends!
HIIIIIII YAH! - This guy sounds suspiciously like the Beverly Hills Ninja.
It Lifts and Separates - Forget about that pair of socks you roll up and stick down your pants. Get a real faux schvantz! Autographed by Commander Codpiece at a small additional charge.
Ummm, Strawberry - Man takes a lick and keeps on skipping. BTW, I always thought the righties tasted better, but everyone has a favorite.
Sure She Did - New York cop eats meatballs and exclaims, "I can't believe I ate the whole thing...Hey! Dude! Look at the pretty colors!"
Foolish White People With Tattoos - It looks sooo cool, but it says, "Kick me!" in Mandarin. Who knew?!
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Thursday, November 09, 2006
United We Stand, Divided We're Outa LuckAs I write this post, the first polls are closing in the east. It's too early to see what the results will be, but one way or another this election signals change.
If the republicans squeak by, they'll almost certainly have a less than razor-thin margin. If this turns out to be the case, I hope they'll be smarter than the Idiot King who they currently kowtow to.
If you remember, when Sir Failsalot took office the second time he boasted of his mandate and the political capital he intended to spend generously. We all know that numbers aren't Dub's thing, but his statement amply demonstrated his inability to not only balance a Federal budget, but his political capital checkbook too. He didn't have a mandate, he had a buck thirty-five and a wad of lint in his political capital account - all of which was eaten up by the rubber political checks he's written for the past two years.
Between the frittered-away BushCo capital and the angry democratic and independent creditors, the only way republicans will get anything done is to throw themselves on the mercy of the bankruptcy court and try to cut some more conciliatory deals. If they fail in the slightest, the next election will see them evicted from the House, Senate, and White House in the click of a malfunctioning e-voting machine.
If the dems win, they won't be in much better shape. They'll take over chairmanships and somewhat control the agenda, but they won't have a huge majority. Even if they did, the electorate already has a bellyful of squabbling and backstabbing. Their patience for negativity, blamesmanship, and corruption is unbelievably short and they are ready to explode will all the force of a Baghdad IED if people don't start working together. Democrats ignore that sentiment at their own peril.
I hope the dems will see the light. If they're smart, they'll be firm but not unyielding. If they're smart, they'll work a few important issues first and make their way down the list in order of true importance - flag burning and Ten Commandments amendments be damned. Despite the acrid taste it leaves in our mouths, sensible compromise must be the order of the day. The days of "my way or the highway" must end for the country's sake.
I think the Bush dynasty has something really important to teach the dems. Both Bush 41 and 43 have had the uncanny ability to piss away some of the greatest goodwill ever enjoyed by any President. In the wake of the Gulf War, Papa Doc had enough backing that he could have literally changed the world. Instead, he chose to piss it away on nothing and lost the election in the process.
Baby Doc found himself in a similar situation after 9/11 and continuing into Afghanistan. He chose to piss away his gift of goodwill on a host of ill-conceived ideas from tax breaks for corporations to his Iraq War of Error, clearly demonstrating the traits of a man raised with no understanding of the value of things. He's already skating on extremely thin ice and may have already orchestrated his party's ouster from Congress. Given his ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, I'm sure his legacy will also include a change in the White House, regardless of what happens in the current election.
I hope that whoever wins this election can rise above the muck they've slathered on themselves and the American people and start doing what is right again. Our country, aided by both parties, is ebbing away into a fetid outhouse of crapitude.
If we don't turn around soon, it will be too late. I'm not hopeful beyond a glimmer, but perhaps the next time we have an election the country will only be divided by a few miles than a few light-years.
And I, for one, am for whoever is willing to roll up their sleeves and work on that.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Tuesday, November 07, 2006
The Parable of Pastor TedYou might suspect that as an atheist and battler of all that is oppressive about far right religion, I'd be laughing about the meth-fueled cock-up (pun intended) that Pastor Ted Haggard finds himself in. It would be easy to giggle in glee over the tissue-paper thin excuses he tosses about - I bought the meth, but threw it away; I got a massage, but I didn't have sex - but that would be ignoble of me.
I don't hate the man. In fact, far from it. We have more than enough people hiding secrets they really don't need to hide in order to protect themselves from the very things they hypocritically condemn in others. I also don't hate his family who were probably unaware of his extracurriculars. Nor, do I hate his flock, who are obviously traumatized by the whole sorted affair. It's never fun to see a man - even a hypocrite like Pastor T - have his life ruined and this time is no exception.
I fully expect things will play out as they usually do when the high and mighty fall from their pulpits. Jim Bakker and Jimmy Swaggart offer ample proof that, in time, Pastor Ted will be back, a cleansed sinner who'll continue preaching the hatred he preached before he fell prey to it. His flock will listen and say Halleluiah! They will continue to have their righteousness and say they hate the sins of gays, but not the sinners.
But Haggard's fall from grace offers an important lesson about the power of God and the clay feet of men.
Most religions teach that God looks frowningly on mere mortals who rise above their lowly stations in an attempt to wipe some of the sweet smell of holiness onto their own fevered, human brows. This teaching is one that many religious leaders conveniently forget. The self-anointed - from Popes to religious bunko artists to Islamic mullahs - have done this for centuries. They claim they're direct vessels of God's word. They spout the bunkum that their prayers are somehow holier or more effective or better informed than the other riff-raff's.
The religious learn early to hand themselves over to God. They are taught that faith will make them free. They are taught that if they pray to their God, He will answer and help make those prayers come true.
But nowhere in that holy chain of command do religious works say much about the middle man. A priest, pastor, or mullah who claims a DSL line straight to the Big Guy, someone who can expedite your prayers for a small donation. They also don't say anything about the middle man diverting a little of that prayer power to more secular ideas they happen to hold. For example, the secular ideas that true-believers must hate gays, other religions, or democrats.
Congregants are much like children that way. They must be taught to hate or discriminate. They aren't born that way, the middle men like Pastor Ted teach them to be that way and hate isn't something God looks kindly upon either.
Before his confession, many of Haggard's congregants professed disbelief that their chosen middle man could do those awful things he'd been accused of. Even when the story became tattered, some expressed complete confidence in the man, despite the facts starting to emerge. That fervent belief - almost equal to their belief in God - made them completely bereft of any thought that a man like theirs could succumb to mankind's normal deficiencies.
And there's the problem with blind faith.
In the process of giving themselves over to God, they gave themselves over to a hypocrite who hornswaggled them into believing in his great power. They began not to think for themselves - as God intends - but to believe in this mere middle man with a penchant for stirring fears and rushing forward with the tonic to heal them.
I believe true believers in God simply believe in God...period. They don't allow others to think for them. They aren't called to action because another mortal lectures them from the pulpit. They don't feel better about themselves because a closeted gay preacher tells them to feel good about themselves. They don't hate themselves in the mistaken belief that God tells them to. They do those things because they believe in God...period.
So in the spirit of honorable atheism, I'd like to give my God-fearing brethren a piece of ecclesiastical advice. Once Ted has been "healed", and is back on the path of righteousness, he will return to you. When he does, accept him back into the fold. Your Lord knows he could use some help weathering the pitiful life he's created for himself. Forgive his sins, just like the Good Book says. But when you do, always remember that he's a mortal and flawed - just like you and the person singing hymns next to you and that nice man next door who always dresses so fabulously. We're all in this together. We all need each other.
So here's the advice:
Be careful when interacting with other humans, they just might not turn out to be who you thought they were. They might be a two-bit sermonator or they might be a gay man with a problem.
In Ted's case, let's call it both.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Monday, November 06, 2006