Archive for May, 2009

Tomorrow:

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

clip_image002

Was Jesus Gay?

No Nudes is Bad Nudes

Friday, May 29th, 2009

midwinterweb2

Memorial Day traditionally has been the kickoff opening for nudist resorts in climate-challenged regions like ours. I’ve enjoyed nude sunbathing for years and, as others have told me, it’s no big thing.

The resorts have ranged from ‘naturist-primitive’ – like the one we have near Sodus, NY – to ‘pool side umbrella drinks’ such as a resort I know near Toronto. But whatever the location, nudists enjoy the sun and the freedom allowed by a clothes -free environment.

This freedom comes from total body acceptance without regard to the ‘young, beautiful, slender bodies’ and ‘latest fashion’ pressures that dominate our culture. While getting a tan, I’ve seen the bodies of senior citizens, kids, mastectomy survivors, scar victims, fat people, skinny people, and just about everyone else under the sun. It’s hard to believe – but nobody really cares what you look like. For first time nudists, the naked novelty idea wears off after about five or ten minutes – really.

In this society, we associate being naked with sex – but nudist resorts are about as sexy as dog shows. There are no displays of physical affection, teasing bikinis, or “enhanced” SpeedO’s. Sun worshippers surprised me at first. Most are just average, tradition – bound Americans with this one rebellious activity which they do not consider rebellious at all.

Do they worry about skin damage from the sun? Oh please – virtually everything is relatively safe when done in moderation. And anything done regularly to the extreme is usually harmful – especially moderation.

Amy says:

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

amyboo1

“I’ve had just about enough of myself today.”

This is Amy, my twin and best friend, and her dog, Mr. Boo Radley.  Amy comments a lot on my posts – you’ve probably read a few. Of course Amy and I share a birthday.  What year? EVERY year, dumbass.  Amy was once a centerfold with real staples in her middle and everything!  Today she’s much cooler than that.

They Changed the Damn Handshake Again

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009

images17

I know I’m not cool – but I do try to keep up. When I go to some function, there are two good friends who’ll help me decide what to wear. One’s a young woman and one’s gay – so I’ve got it covered. I practice ‘small talk’ in advance so I don’t appear rude.


I know when people start talking about movies or new television shows, I just put on a happy face, smile, and nod. If they ask if I’ve seen it, I always say, “Not yet – but I hear it’s great!” If they start telling me, in EXCRUCIATING DETAIL a character biography or plot line, I throw up a line I picked up from a bartender friend – “Don’t tell me too much, I want to see it myself!”


If the talk turns to sports (in which case I’m just about Jewish) I’ve learned to slowly shake a sad head and say, “Typical ______s”. Like, “Didja hear the Bills signed Joe Bagadonuts!?” I sadly shake my head and say, “Typical Bills.”


This all may sound awful to you but the alternative is to slam a pistol into my mouth and paint the walls. I have an EXTREMELY LOW threshold of interest in any contemporary cultural anything. That’s just the way I am – I can’t help it. Do you ever get bored? Well, multiply that by about 1000 and land in my land. My friends used to call me the “Chairman of the Bored”. But I try to fit in. I try not to think too much. Usually I can assimilate enough so as not to be a public freak show – until something new is tossed to me. Like different handshakes.


Until the late ‘60’s, handshakes were handshakes – everyone knew how to shake hands. Then the cool people started the “power” handshake – confusing all of us who weren’t cool. Today, anything goes – and usually goes right by me. I extend my hand and some young coolie lightly hits it with a fist – or holds up a hand for a ‘high-5’. I used to think the ‘high 5’ botard was about to slap me – but I now know that’s what pro athletes do on TV if they happen to do anything except screw up badly. Yay! Congratulating ‘High 5’s’ all around if you didn’t drop the ball or ran a half-yard or passed your pee test! I guess pro sports guys need a lot of handy positive reinforcements. Their paychecks would be enough for me but what the hell do I know?


At least all these screwy handshakes are better than hugs. I’m not a hugger. You can hug me in public – but I’m not hugging you unless I’ve just slipped a five-dollar bill between your soft, moist skin and your G-string.


Memorial Day Parade of Diversity

Monday, May 25th, 2009

images16

I just watched the Memorial Day Parade a few blocks from where I live. I forgot it was on until I had to go to an ATM machine and couldn’t get across Main Street. I usually hate parades but I stayed a long time because this one was so, well, strange.

There were the usual formations of impressive service people, marching in step, carrying flags, looking sharp. Of course, they got the biggest rounds of applause, as they should. And then kid marching bands sounding loud and great – like right out of the Music Man. They were cool. But between the main acts were some home-made floats and marchers that definitely had to be put in the MISCELLANEOUS columns.


There was a float advocating Foster Parents with a bunch of (I assume) foster kids hanging off the sides and I was afraid one would slip under the wheels of the float and get squished. Where were their parents?

Then came the Black Masons honoring Fredrick Douglass, one of Rochester’s own – followed by the Black Masons Women’s Auxiliary League all dressed in white honoring the Black Masons, I guess. Aren’t they all supposed to be secret?


Then a large contingent of Miracle Marchers for Christ or something surrounded a float of Bible Scriptures neatly lettered. They kind of sang and waved placards – without embarrassment.


Next a crew of women in 1800’s crummy clothes and bonnets with a spinning wheel marched by. I had no idea whom they represented but figured Rochester’s Museum must have had a garage sale and where else would they wear these get-ups?


Two, three-wheeled anti-smoking, billboard bicyclists rolled by and the kids lying on the bikes looked real bored. It seemed like they wanted to go faster but had to stay in line behind some slow, old women’s auxiliary without a matching men’s set. I know the women were slow because there was a looong gap between the previous act and theirs.


My favorite “float” was this huge truck advertising the Salvation Army. I don’t know – “Army” – Memorial Day, get it? But anyway, this old guy on the sidewalk yelled, “You got any furniture in the back? I need a couch!” And everyone laughed.


At first I wondered if this was all kind of disrespectful to the Veterans whom we are honoring today but I don’t think so. They fought for America’s freedom and this parade was one of the best examples of freedom I’ve seen in years.

Memorial Day: Don’t Forget to Thank a Grill

Sunday, May 24th, 2009

cookout

Are you having a cookout today? Many Americans do because it’s a tradition – and you “do” traditions whether you want to or not.  People who mindlessly, unthinkingly accept traditions are called “sheeple”. And there are plenty of herds in America.

The husband (usually) drags out the Webber grill, fills it with old charcoal (vintage: Memorial Day, 2008), dumps on too much lighter fluid (a definite lack of creativity naming this product), lights it, and then jumps back from the 2-foot flames.

“I’ll be ready for those burgers in about 10-minutes!” he shouts to his eye-rolling wife who is just thankful he didn’t set the house on fire. Then Dad grabs another beer – his third. He thinks, “if I can just get through this shit before 1:00 PM, I can still catch the first inning of the Yankee game”. The kids groan when they see a backyard inferno like they haven’t seen since the newscasts of the California wildfires. Ahh, charred rawhide for dinner again this year. The charcoal briquettes might be easier to eat.

“MOM! Can we go to McDonalds?”

”No!” she yells back. “We’re a family – and families cook and eat outdoors together on Memorial Day. It’s important to your Father.”

Louder groans. “Why?” one yells.

“God friggin’ knows…,” she thinks as she scoops salads onto serving plates from plastic containers bought at Wegmans.

“Go set the table! Use the paper plates and plastic silverware.” More groans. Even before the kids find the long lost picnic supplies, the wind picks up and a new species of aggressive fly is attracted to the smell of burning meat. Finally the family is seated. Paper plates are held down by mayonnaise salads and one hand – as the other tries to shoo away the unrelenting pests.

And despite the fact that everything on the grill is now uniformly burnt to a crispy black, Dad asks the punch line question, “How would you like your burger?”

(A few people got upset today when this post appeared in DemocratandChronicle.com. “This isn’t how we’re supposed to celebrate Memorial Day!” they whined. No shit, Sherlocks – it’s called satire. To see how I really feel about Memorial Day, please read my previous post, “The United Stakes of Halliburton.”)

The United Stakes of Halliburton

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

images14

When younger people asked me why we stayed so long in Vietnam, I’d always say, “Brown and Root”. When they’d say, “What the hell is Brown and Root?”, I’d say “It was a huge Texas conglomerate that made billions from construction projects in Vietnam like the complete rebuilding of Haiphong Harbor and gave a few billion back to President Lyndon Johnson and his oil cronies in the ‘60’s. Kind of like Halliburton in Iraq today.”

A few years ago, one of these smart kids just shook his head and said, “Try to keep up, old man. Brown and Root is now a SUBSIDIARY of Halliburton – they bought it.” Say what? Well, I should have known. No matter how corrupt American politics gets, beneath the surface, it’s always much worse than we can possibly imagine.

Joseph Belle-Isle is a faithful reader of this blog whom I’ve never met. He gets a few laughs from it and also frequently writes comments about my posts. To me, his comment on my last post, “Chatty Cheney” is about as clear as you can get on the true nature of power and American politics. Please go back and read it.

Joseph is a Veteran and this is Memorial Day Weekend. Veterans have made possible blogs like this by protecting our freedom of speech. I hope you’ll thank a Veteran sometime this weekend – there’s no politics involved. People like Johnson, Bush, and Cheney send them into war and they don’t get the “spoils”. They get shit – and some don’t come back home.

A few years ago, I thanked a Vet (who was working in a store) for the first time in my life. I felt like a total asshole. I mean, who was I to intrude on this man’s past, and sacrifices, and service to our country? He looked me dead in the eye, smiled a little smile, and said, “You’re welcome.” Take the risk this weekend – show some balls! Thank a Vet.

Thank you, Joseph Belle-Isle.


Chatty Cheney

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

images13

When Dick Cheney was Vice President, we rarely heard him speak.  He spoke about as much as Calvin Coolidge who hardly spoke at all. Once, when a man said he made a $10 bet if he could get the President to say more than 2-words, Cal said, “You lose.”


Cheney used to be like that. Today, you’d have to slap him to shut him  up. His diarrhea of the mouth dumps on the Obama administration as he tries to justify the cockeyed war in Iraq. He’s a much better shot at anything positive than he was at anything quail.


Before becoming Vice President, Cheney was the head of Halliburton, the private company which, without question, has made more profits (by far) than any other company in our war against Iraq and our rebuilding of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Of course, awarding contracts without competitive bidding didn’t hurt the company.  Before he became Vice President, Cheney owned stock options in Halliburton worth $241, 498. Today those options are worth more than $8-million – an impressive 3,281% increase in a bad economy. Cheney has pledged to give these profits to charity. I hereby pledge to lose 20-pounds of weight in the next 10-minutes.


The Clintons made untold $zillions from Whitewater and other financial ventures and Ronald Reagan once was paid $1-million for one post-presidential speech in Japan without his “Breakfast for Bonzo” trailers. And although they’re nicer crooks, I doubt if Michelle Obama will be clipping coupons when she leaves the White House.


Oh, I’m sorry. Are you feeling patriotic this weekend? Maybe you should believe in mainstream politics. At one time you believed in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Warren Commission. How’d that work out for you?

####

Sarah’s Big Adventure in Auburn, NY

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

images12

In the 1800’s, Auburn, New York used to be kind of an important place. It was a major stop on the Erie Canal, and the birthplace of Abner Doubleday – credited for inventing baseball. In addition, inmate William Kemmler took his last breath in Auburn Prison as the first person in the world to be executed by the electric chair.


Auburn is also the birthplace of William H. Seward, Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln – who arranged the purchase of Alaska, known at the time as “Seward’s Folly”. That’s why Sarah Palin, Governor of Alaska and former Republican nominee for Vice-President of the United States, is going there next month.


Say what? The Honorable Sarah Palin, Governor of Alaska, is coming to Auburn, NY (population: about 28,000)? Uhhh, what in heaven’s name for? Hey – I don’t know. I guess to thank Auburnians for buying her state and not using automatic beheading machines to execute prisoners who are turkeys. WhoTF knows?


But I do know this: two years from now, this ex-beauty queen will be running for President under the Republican banner championing Patriotism and Family Values. She will be grilled about her lack of knowledge of international leaders and their countries and what place America should play in the world. Right now she SHOULD be taking an intensive course of visiting as many countries as she can and LISTENING to every damn leader who will take the time to talk to her. Don’t even ASK ME to consider her a viable candidate for President until she has some international experience and education under her lipstick.


In 2011, when she’s asked by reporters about human rights violations in China and I hear her say, “Well, in 2009, I visited Auburn, NY, which invented the first electric chair for capital offenses….” – I’ll probably just break down and cry. I friggin’ swear! I’ll just break down and cry…………….


####

BETTY & VERONICA TO WED!

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

les-betver

Betty Cooper and Veronica Lodge, both rumored to be girlfriends of Archie Andrews, the red-haired, wholesome 65-year old Riverdale High School student, will actually marry each other in Los Angeles next month. It’s a story that’s sure to shock comic book readers of all ages, most of whom believed Archie would marry one of his “Arch-rivals”. Ms. Lodge made the announcement in front of a rack of flannel shirts in a Modesto, California Sears store with the blushing Betty Cooper at her side.

Speaking out of the side of her mouth with a non-filter cigarette on the other side, Ms. Lodge said, “Yah, I figured I’d make an honest woman out of her. I’m sick of the fact the FBA keeps getting more fingerprints than the FBI!”

When asked what ‘FBA’ stood for, the burley Veronica snarled, “Freaken’ Betty’s Ass”. The couple plan to marry on June 15th, the anniversary of  the marriage of the late J. Edgar Hoover and Clyde Tolson, Former Director and Mrs. Director of the FBI.

Archie Andrews appeared shocked at the news. When asked if he ever “got any – on the side?” from Ms. Lodge, Mr. Andrews said, “I haven’t gotten any in so long, I didn’t even know they moved it.”

####