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Month: March 2016

Got them old post-caucus Easter Peeps blues …

‘Lection News Yeah, I’m late to the news, but boy that was a lot of v*ters feeling the Bern last weekend. If Hillary and her superdelegates manage to hold on to the nomination through sheer force of establishmentarianism, what’s her slogan going to be? “Almost a mandate!” “Not a mandate, but I still won, suckers.” “Corruption pays!” “Suck it up; you’re stuck with me.” “You don’t have to like me. You don’t have to trust me. But you better v*te for me in the general election ’cause the alternative’s even scarier.” “Mine’s still bigger than The Donald’s.” —– Speaking of…


I don’t always marry my first cousin, but when I do our house looks like …

You’ve seen the improvements in my wreck of a house and indeed there’ve been many. I take pride in showing off pictures like this:


What I don’t often show you is how absolutely godawful some of it still looks. In some cases, it’s even worse than when I bought it, largely thanks to said improvements. Really, in some ways a tarpaper shack would be an improvement. I’m not kidding.


A moment out of time

I haven’t written much about being ‘Netless (one month, five days, and seven hours as I write this, but who’s counting?) because after the first few days of adjustment, it hasn’t had that much impact.

Sometimes it’s devilishly inconvenient. When I desperately — I assure you, desperately — needed to know all the Hogwarts house colors, heads, and ghosts, I had to wait all the way until the next morning to look them up, oh alas alack.

Other than that and slower correspondence, the impact has been small and mostly positive.

My favorite thing about this ‘Netless interval is having a “moment out of time” several mornings a week.


A Day Out of Time

This weekend I read Oliver Sacks’ tiny mini-tome, Gratitude. I really mean tiny. It’s a book you can finish in half an hour. It consists of four short essays, all written in the two years before his death. All four reflect on aging and dying as Sacks went from a robust 79-year-old who swam a mile a day to an invalid dying of liver cancer. He really says nothing new or profound. For that matter he doesn’t say much overtly about gratitude. The attraction is, of course, that Oliver Sacks is saying the rather familiar things about death. He lived…



Reading true-crime stories (yes, one of my secret vices), I’m repeatedly struck by the way victims are often complicit in the horrors committed against them.

I’m not talking about the woman who takes a strange man home from a bar or the family that fails to lock its doors when a burglar is on the loose (though them, too). I’m talking about victims who feel personal loyalty to “friends,” relations, leaders, and professionals who are doing them obvious harm.

I’m talking about patients who stand by a quack doctor even though she’s obviously killing them to get their money and possessions. (She killed many more).

Or the followers of a preacher who’s degrading and controlling them for his own sick benefit. Jeffs. Jones. Creffield. The horror stories go back at least to the middle ages and more likely to the dawn of human time.

I’m talking about people who repeatedly believe obvious, manipulative sociopathic liars. (The link is to a Joseph Wambaugh book that details one of the creepiest examples of manipulation and self-deception I’ve ever read about. But obviously it’s just one example of thousands.)


Friday Freedom Question: Where/How would you live?

I once lived in a town where the most successful realtor had a huge home with its own golf course (just six holes, but still …). Incongruously to me, this estate sat bang on the side of a main highway, enduring vehicle noise day and night. Apparently I wasn’t the only person who wondered why anyone with that much money would choose such a public location. When a curious acquaintance asked him, he had the perfect (and IMHO perfectly awful) answer: “What’s the point of being successful if nobody can see that you are?” My idea of successful householding is…


Who’s worse than Hillary and The Donald?

I was thinking the other day that if The Hillary and The Donald* actually end up as the D and R nominees, it’ll be the first election in U.S. history where half the v*ote is an “anybody but Hillary” protest and the other half an “anybody but Donald” backlash. Can you think of a more repulsive matchup ever? Not that any aren’t repulsive. But this one’s worse than Nixon v. Humphrey** for complete lack of … well, anything good. This guy’s got it right. I’ve always believed that if you have to have elections, cutting up a phone book and…