AKA “A Monday Ramble.”
Things I wonder about
1. When will we stop saying “Google” when we mean “search online”? I don’t want to think that such an evil organization will be immortalized in the language. But saying, “I DuckDuckGoed it” or “I StartPaged it” doesn’t have that same ring. And you certainly can’t say, “I Ducked it.”
“I Binged it” might do — if you want to immortalize another slightly less evil company and you don’t mind your online searches being confused with drinking until you pass out. Yes, I know we could just go back to saying “search,” but we need something catchy to draw tiny little Twitterpated minds away from automatic Googlethink.
2. Why do politicians and social movements get credit for things they didn’t do? “FDR ended the Depression.” (Yeah, only eight+ years into his administration, and then with a war and new forms of privation.) “Street protests ended the Vietnam war.” (Lessee: Begun in 1964, 1968 was their biggest year, U.S. didn’t get out of Vietnam until 1975. Nope.) “Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves.” (Only if you believe we really had to be the only nation on earth to conduct a bloody war to do what the entire civilized world was already coming around to; only if you believe the Emancipation Proclamation was anything other than a PR gesture meant to undermine the South’s war effort; only if you pretend not to notice that Lincoln continued to preside over four slave states himself and excluded them from the so-called emancipation.) And once established, these gigantic urban myths never seem to get debunked.
3. Why do so many people believe politicians who begin sentences with “It will never …” or “It will only affect …” For example: “Your Social Security number will never be used as national ID”; “The income tax will only affect the rich”; “Expanded requirements for drivers licenses will only affect commercial licensees” (until the very next session of Congress, when we’ll quietly strike the word “commercial” from the law.)
4. Why do media outlets keep saying, “Biden’s policy is …” or “Biden thinks … or “Biden’s view on the crisis …” or “Biden plans …”? C’mon. Biden more likely sits in a locked room in the White House drooling on his bib. Even he, with what’s left of his mind, has repeatedly referred to how even something as simple as speaking freely to the public will get him in trouble with his behind-the-scenes handlers. The emperor has no &^%$#!
clothes “policy” or “views” or “plans.” Why are we all supposed to pretend otherwise?
Ah well. Who knows? And merely saying, “Because people are stoooopid!” doesn’t explain it.
Things I do
Something I haven’t done in a long while is artwork. The last real piece of art I did was that portrait of the border collie, Brandy, that I’m still quite fond of. But that was a tough one to do and after it I took a “short break” that’s stretched almost four years.
A couple days ago I picked up an art pad and was noodling with a way to depict animals more as graphic designs than in realistic portraits. Then the very next morning I received a call for submissions from a regional maritime museum that wanted artwork of some very specific sea critters. One was a starfish. Which immediately flashed into that graphical framework I was noodling.
I spent the weekend painting this.
I knew when I sketched it out that starfish (or sea stars as they’re more properly called, these days) couldn’t bend themselves as that lower leg is bent, but I liked the angle, designwise, and told myself, “It’s not an actual starfish; it’s a design based on a starfish.”
Now it’s bugging me. Ah well. Overall it looks much better in person than it does in that photo. And I tested new techniques and materials, so that’s worth something. (Also, I was wrong about starfish not being able to bend like that, as Simon Templar showed me.)
Okay, only a few of these are actually weird (as the title of this post promises). Some aren’t weird at all. But if politicians can get away with centuries of BS, surely you can let me have a minute or two of it.
(Not weird; thought-provoking, in fact.) “On Shadow Careers and Turning Pro.” Toirdhealbheach Beucail on finding your calling vs getting lost in small daily addictions.
(Also not weird.) Seven things parents do to raise smart, resilient Kids. But it sounds to me as if this is also a way of raising exceptionally driven kids, which could be a mixed blessing.
(Weird; definitely.) Mammals have the ability to breathe through their intestines.
(Not weird; bacon.) Here’s a recipe for bacon-cheddar-chive biscuits. MUST try this!
(Only a little weird.) “Joe Biden Gets Mugged by Events.” Rather, his puppetmasters do. (Whoever thought we’d luck and and have a president that makes Jimmy Carter look like a genius leader?)
(Weird.) Human and animal roles reversed. Although ridden with animal-rights messages, these cartoons are well-done and bizarrely compelling.