Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Click here to help the relief effort

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Good Moment

I can't sleep. I heard this quote today on television, just after I finished eating dinner: "Insomnia is a cruel mistress." Ain't that the truth. I don't have much to say, so I'll leave you with this...

Not too long ago I found myself riding in a car along with Nate, Katie, and Junior. Nate was driving his Explorer with his chair leaned back as far as it would go. Junior rode shotgun with his arm resting on the open window. Katie smiled next to me in the backseat. It was her birthday, so she was happy. The windows were down, it was late at night, the wind blew in my face as Nate pushed his truck up close to 85 miles per hour along the highways of Columbus. “Razor” by the Foo Fighters blasted through the radio, the amplified bass accentuating the sounds of the passing road. We were on the way to meet Abbie and Mechele at a bar in Grandview. We would have fun when we got there. But for that moment, each of us sat with the wind in our faces, sticking out hands outside, trying to catch the last bit of summer before it slowly slipped away. Nobody said anything, and the moment passed almost before it had started. But it was a good moment. And I hope to remember it. For a while at least.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Brand New Week

You might be headed into dark water, but for me it's no-work Monday!

Friday, August 26, 2005

Old Words and Dumb Minds

Have you ever looked back at some of your old college papers and though, "Man..I was really stupid back then?" Well, I got an e-mail from an old college buddy of mine, and that lead me to take another look at my old newspaper columns. The articles were always due Sunday at noon, and I remember spending countless Sunday mornings at work in the library, banging out whatever pointless political article was on my mind. Apparently, I was avidly liberal in college. I don't remember it, but the evidence is there.

I had a good time checking it out, and since I only took one writing class the entire time I was in school, it made be realize two things: 1) how pathetically stupid I am and 2) how worthless my degree really is.

If you're up for a good laugh, check out the obnoxious, screaming idiot from my past.


Hundreds turned out for a rally at the Willie’s Bar and Grill here to support the now-former University of Cincinnati basketball coach.Huggins, making his first public appearance and comments since he agreed Wednesday to walk away from his job for $3 million, fought back tears as he spoke to more than 500 die-hard fans.

“I just want to say thank you for the wonderful 16 years,” Huggins said before asking for a moment to compose himself. “It’s been 16 great years here.”

read more

Thursday, August 25, 2005

University President or Evil Supergenius. You Decide

Which Science Fiction/Fantasy Character Are You?

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

A venerated sage with vast power and knowledge, you gently guide forces around you while serving as a champion of the light.

Judge me by my size, do you? And well you should not - for my ally is the Force. And a powerful ally it is. Life greets it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us, and binds us. Luminescent beings are we, not this crude matter! You must feel the Force around you, everywhere.

A Letter To You

I wrote this to a friend recently. Now I am writing it to you. All of you. Each and every one...

Hey You:

I'm sitting here, alone in my house, wondering if I've made you mad. You seem like a level-headed person and quite an intelligent one at that. And, while I don't really think you're mad, there is a small part of me that can't help but wonder. You see, I've been pissing a lot of people off lately. Old friends take offense at my opinions on politics and science and religion. New friends look at me with strange faces that say "get the hell away from me, freakboy!"

I'm not trying to make people mad. It just happens. I ask them questions and, no matter how much I say, "I just don't understand your opinion, please explain it to me" or "I'm not trying to demean you or put you down" or "I honestly want to know what you think," they tell me I am too offensive to speak with. They tell me I am weird. They tell me I am stupid and insensitive and a whole host of other mean, nasty, and ugly things that, again, make no sense to me.

Maybe things would have ended differently if I'd skipped computers and majored in English like I wanted to.

At any rate, regarding our recent conversations about [enter issue here], I hope I haven't made you so mad that you want to climb a clock tower with a high powered semi-automatic rifle in order to pick me off from a distance....or blackmail me into committing hari kari...or slip arsenic into my Mountain Dew...or force me to cut off a pound of flesh and affix it to a bomb that is attached to my back in order to stop the timer, which is dangerously close to zero. That's what everybody else wants to do. And the fact that I just don't understand it isn't going to change anything.

So I hope you're not mad. We don't have to talk about politics or religion or sports or law or education or technology or anything that is likely to cause a controversy. We don't have to sit across the aisle from each other and stare at our respective walls, thinking of something banal to say in order to make time pass more quickly. I just hope we can hang out and have a good time.

If that doesn't work, there is always a duel to the death. That, at least, would be fun and exciting. And less painful than talking about politics.

The Sasquatch

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Religious Discussion


My friend Sean from somewhere in the land of evil (Michigan) started a blog. Naturally, I went there and started arguing with him. Feel free to argue as well. It's fun! Go there and make me look like the idiot I am!


Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Strange Memories

I heard the song “No Woman No Cry” on the way into work this morning just as I passed the old church on Westerville Road: the one that I imagine has some sort of architectural significance but has gone unnoticed amidst the infection of car dealerships and porn shops in the area.

It had been a while since I heard that song, several years in fact. I think the last time I heard it was that night at friend Jeff’s place on Hollister next to school. It was either a Friday or Saturday evening.

Jeff’s roommate John was a big fan of Phish, the Greatful Dead, and Bob Marley, and since none of us were tired we turned the stereo up as loud as it would go, opened the windows and watched as the events proceeded on the street below. The neighbors, it seemed, had been fighting. The lady, who was at least 7 months pregnant, had thrown her husband, a local drug dealer, out on the street.

He spent the majority of the evening banging on the door and screaming, “Let me in woman!” at the top of his lungs. He screamed like a football coach or a man with a bullhorn. Sometime later she let him back in and the muffled screams of their constant fighting continued to fill the dark streets for quite some time.

The police arrived in the middle of the night. The officers approached and when the man opened the door he was no longer screaming. He was cool and collected. He calmly and professionally addressed the officers as “sir” and “m’am,” for one was a man and the other a woman. When the officers asked their questions, the man calmly and professionally answered. He didn’t want any trouble, his voice told the officers in cool, submissive tones. The problems had ceased for now.

The night was dark and restful.

But the problems had not ceased. The officers asked to enter his house. He calmly and professionally declined. They insisted. He calmly and professionally stepped into the street and slowly closed the screen door behind him. He calmly and professionally drew a pistol from his pocket and, almost apologetically, shot the policeman in his chest.

He then sprinted away into the night.

The officer’s partner did not shoot. She drew her gun but the street was dark and the man was quick, and she couldn’t quite see clearly enough. She opted for prudence, and focused her attention on her fallen partner.

Police descended upon the neighborhood, blocking off the streets and alleyways; shining their floodlights around every corner, every nook and every cranny. They located him in a nearby park, hiding beneath a bench with his face in his hands. They put him in the back of a cruiser which returned to the scene of the crime. He watched with almost clinical disinterest as the paramedics attempted to revive the officer he had so recently shot.

The paramedics decided that since they were so close to university Hospital they would try to move the officer here where he would have a better chance at survival. As they loaded him onto a stretcher, the woman, the pregnant lady, screamed for the police to let her husband go.

“He ain’t do nuthin’” she screamed over the policeman who had responded to her cries for help. “Why you takin’ him. Why you takin’ him?”

And again: “He ain’t DO nuthin’!”

As the ambulance hurried to the hospital and the cruisers rolled towards the, Bob Marley wailed from the stereo in the living room. “Everytin’s gonna be alright. Everyting’s gonna be alright.”

The police officer didn’t make it. The bullets were too deep and the distance to the hospital was too far. Too far by leagues. The husband was convicted of murder and is now likely among friends in the Hamilton County Correctional Facility. Or someplace similar.

This is assuming that he has not yet passed away, himself a likely target for violence in prison from either a vengeful guard or an insane inmate. There are plenty of each.

The funeral for the fallen police officer took place next week. He was an officer in Cincinnati but he was born in Columbus, Ohio. A sea of white and blue police cars from all across southern and central Ohio, including a hefty number of civilians, followed the procession of family members as they escorted their husband, their father, their brother, their son to his resting place near his home in Columbus. The procession stretched for what felt like an eternity along Interstate 71.

I sat parked on the side of the road, watcing the procession as Bob Marley played his simple, sweet chorus of heartache and loss.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Gene Kruppa says "qqqqqqq"

I’m still awake. What the hell?

Here is a list of things that have gone through my mind in the last hour or so:

I just finished reading this piece of fun by Amanda over at Pandagon. I know it’s wrong to say so, because it’s very mysonginistical and junk and stuff, but I bet Amanda makes a mean Apple Pie. Mmmmm. Apple Pie.

* * *

I went back and read this post (with the ensuing discussion) in which I argued about something or other with my good buddy [name deleted to protect the innocent]. I never knew I was such an asshole. Amazing!

* * *

WOXY still rocks, even at 4:30 in the morning.

* * *

It just occurred to me that a former student worker of mine, whom I worked with for over three years, was recently hired by either the Department of Homeland Security or the Immigration and Nationalization Service. Or something else. I don’t know. The point is that I never e-mailed her to congratulate her. I really AM an asshole, aren’t I? Damn.

* * *

I swear a lot after midnight, don’t I?

* * *

Especially after I’ve had a few drinks.

* * *

Tomorrow is Monday, which means I don’t have to work. I’d love to lord it over everybody as evidence that my job rocks and yours doesn’t. But my job does not rock. It doesn’t even roll. My job is about as much fun as shaving your eyebrows with a meat grinder. In fact, the only saving grace is that I get a three day weekend. And even then I spend all my time doing this instead of working on stuff that might actually get me a better job (or ahead in my current job).

* * *

I hope my boss doesn’t read this. He might not appreciate the meat grinder comment. Or maybe he will! Who knows?

* * *

I’m fat. REALLY fat. And I have trouble pronouncing the word “indubitably” without laughing.

* * *

My left pinky shakes sometimes. For no reason. Maybe I have Parkinson’s disease. Or cancer. Or maybe I just need to stop drinking so much fucking caffeine.

* * *

Given the choice, though, I hope it’s Parkinson’s or cancer. Cuz there aint no way I’m giving up caffeine. If I have to go through even a single day at work with a straight head, I might have to start fire-bombing.

* * *

Which would be funny, since two of the guys who started my company are Paul Tibbets and Curtis Lemay.

* * *

I often find myself wondering if the current system of college is merely a pyramid scam run by guidance councilors and people with PhD’s that couldn’t get jobs in the real world. But then I also find myself wondering how people like Jean-Paul Sartre weren’t laughed out of intellegenstia circles for being the blatant morons that they are because, really, how can one expect to craft an effective theory of social justice based on selfishness and subjectivism? This proves you can’t trust me.

* * *

Who the hell is Jean-Paul Sartre?

* * *

I believe that the Designated Hitter is a worthless addition to the traditional sport of baseball. It, along with the preoccupation on power and hitting for average, have lead to a decline in overall skill and thought in the game of baseball while reliance upon the basics of skill and ideas like team chemistry have been defenestrated as quaint ideas of an age past. Then people look to GM’s like Billy Beane and wonder how they can do so well with a small market team. It just goes to show that people are dumb.

* * *

And they no longer care about baseball.

* * *

My pinky is starting to shake again, which means it is getting harder to type. It’s a good thing I never learned to type correctly, otherwise I’d be screwed. As it stands, I type primarily with my fore and middle fingers while the thumbs pound on the space bar. I imagine the Parkinson’s will take these fingers in good time, but until then imagine the fun we can have. If you consider this kind of thing fun, that is.

* * *

I just took another swig of Mountain Dew. That should help things out.

* * *

Watch this. I will type only with my pinky: aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa qqqqqqq qqqqqqq qq qqqqq qqqqqqqqqqq. That pinky has a mind of its own! Look at it go!
Aaa aaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaa aaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaa aaaaa That there is amazing! I’ve never seen anything like it! Qqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqzzzzzzzzzzzxx
Xxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxx cccccccccccccccc c c c ccccc

* * *

I think I’m going to nickname my pinky “Gene Kruppa.” Either that or “Muhammad Ali.”

* * *

How bored does one have to be to spend countless minutes staring at his pinky in wild fascination? And how pretentious must one be to refer to himself in the third person?

* * *

More Mountain Dew!!!

* * *

Did I ever tell you that I almost bowled a 300 once? I did! Nevermind.

* * *

This has been an effective waste of time. I think I will try to go for a walk. Perhaps that will make me tired enough to sleep. Either than or I’ll get sweaty. One of the two. Have fun.

* * *

Say goodbey Gene Kruppa.

* * *

Gene Kruppa says, “qqqqqq qqqqq qqq qqqqq qqqqq.”

Today's the Day We've All Been Waiting For!

It's No-Work Monday! Knock yourselves out!

Nights Like This


Saturday, August 20, 2005

The hits just keep on coming

Click on the picture

Webster's Defines Comedy As...

The headline from this story:
House speaker's brother opens lobbying office
Main company's Web site advertises 'unparalleled access' to the influential

Sometimes the comedy just writes itself.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Dumb Joke

Person #1: "I hear that President Bush hates cell phones."
Person #2: "If that's true, I wonder how he feels about stem cell phones."
Person #1:
Person #2: "What?"
Person #1: "You're a moron."

Sleep is a good thing, and I wish I could get some.

More Old Friends

I was reading Pandagon again, searching for something else about which to rant, when I came across a link to website from yet another old friend.

Jason and I worked together at a Boy Scout Camp in high school. He was a year or two older than me, and I remember being jealous of his Lord of the Ring’s walking staff. It was a sturdy branch that had a perfect Gandalf face carved into the head. I told him I thought it was cool and I asked where he had purchased it, hoping I could score one for myself. He told me that a friend of his had carved it, that it was unique, and that I was not likely to find another of its kind anywhere. He still let me use it on occasion, when I wald take my group of kids through the woods to the river or over to Camp Craig for swimming.

This was before The Lord of the Rings was popular. Back before it was cool to be uncool.

My Boy Scout troop dissolved after its first year, so I got stuck working for the day camp crew, fighting with little kids who wanted to do nothing but scream loudly and set stuff on fire. Jason worked as either the Hiking or Nature instructor (I can't remember which). He had one of the cool gigs in the shade. Jason was a full fledged Boy Scout with high honors. He and another staff member once rigged a zip line that flew a full thirty feet, around a large pine tree, and into a pile of needles and leaves. We never let the kids do this, of course, but when nobody was looking we’d grab the bar, fling ourselves into the air, and fly like laughing idiots around the tree and into the not-so-soft pile of leaves.

I could be wrong about some of this. It was a while ago and memories have a way of fading over time. But I could be right. Sometimes memories stick with you. Sometimes they stick.

We’d hang out playing cards at night when the campers were asleep and the parents went home. There was a large group of us, the core consisting of Joe Dermody, a short wrestler and football player from Finneytown; Rick Berrish who, despite the fact that he was overweight and looked nothing like him, did an amazing impersonation of William Shatner; the Stephens twins, one as spastic as a Chihuahua on speed and the other as laid back as a Zen master locked in a fridge freezer; and Amy Schweitser, who once explained to me the mysteries of AP chemistry while we sat by the pool watching our kids flail and kick in the deep end.

I had the hots for Amy at the time, but then I had the hots for all the girls back then. I was fifteen, so that kind of went with the territory.

I remember once when I remarked to Jason that I was a fan of hard rock and heavy metal, the finest example of which I believed to be Metalica's "Master of Puppets" album.

He said, “You should listen to Led Zeppelin. They are the true gods of rock.” He was right, of course, and I currently own every Led Zeppelin album produced by either Atlantic or the Swan Song lable. I can count the number of Metalica cds in my collection on zero hands (or one hand with no fingers, whichever you prefer).

Jason was a good guy back then. From the looks of things, he still is.

But with the present being the way it is and the tendency of our aging minds to both broaden and contract in the face of different situations, you are likely to now ask how I, a Christian, can hold such a high opinion of a gay man. That is a good question to ask, assuming you are honest and true in your intentions. It is a question which, I fear, has not been asked enough in our society. No, not enough.

This is, in fact, a question I posed of another friend, Donald ??????, while walking through the hallowed Residence Halls of Wright State University in the Spring of my second sophomore year of college. Donald and I were both Resident Advisors for the dorms and we were on our nightly trip through the halls in search of underage students making asses of themselves under the drunken gaze of the God of Beer. The night was slow, so I posed my question.

“Hey,” I said.

“Yeah,” he said.

“I want to ask you something, but I don’t want you get pissed off at me or anything, so please don’t be mad.”

“What?” he said, not quite sure what I had said. I am normally a quiet person, so outbursts like this are not in my nature.

“I want to ask you something,” I said again, this time slower. “But the subject is likely to be offensive. It’s a question I’ve had for years and nobody has been able to give me a good enough answer, so please don’t assume that I’m trying to piss you off or come off as self-righteous or anything.”

“Ok,” he said, wary of what I might ask.

“Remember how we went to that seminar about religion in school a few weeks ago?” I started.

“Yes,” Donald said, beginning to understand what I meant to ask him. A few weeks prior to this conversation, a group of Resident Advisors made a trip down to Cincinnati for a Residence Life convention. One of the seminars was on religious expression in Residence Life, particularly among state schools where many believe it should be locked in…well…a closet.

Donald and I were among the attendees, and Donald had squared off against another person on the subject of religion in the dorms. Donald said that he believed we should remain open to planning activities of this nature. He also mentioned that he, a Christian, had planned several over the years, and he would continue doing it regardless of what others thought of him.

I was surprised to hear this. In case you haven’t guessed it, Donald was (and probably still is) a gay man.

We slowed to a snail's pace halfway through the hallway and I paused for a moment, wondering if I had gotten myself into too much trouble. Not caring, I continued.

“How do you reconcile being both a Christian and gay,” I asked.

Now I didn’t expect him to get too excited or anything, because Donald was always calm in the face of adversity. But I did expect him to get at least a little mad. It has been my experience that the majority of people, regardless of how intelligent they appear, are incapable of engaging in rational discussions about even the most mundane of subjects. And this was certainly less than mundane.

He didn’t get mad, though. True to his nature, he smiled and spoke calmly.

“Joe,” he said, “Thank you for asking. I understand how it might seem strange, but that’s just who I am. I was raised a Christian and I will always be a Christian. Likewise, I have always been gay. When I read the Bible, I don’t see homosexuality as a sin. I know that others do and I’m guessing that since you’re asking, you do too.”

”Yes,” I said, almost embarassed. “Yes I do.”

“I look at it this way,” he said. “I am in search of truth in my life. For me, that means God. At the moment, I do not find homosexuality and God to be at odds with each other.”

We stopped in the stairwell and he continued.

“Now this doesn’t mean that it will always be this way. I believe that God is leading me closer to him and I believe that he will eventually show me different Truths that shock me. That might mean he will one day show me that homosexuality is, indeed, a sin. He also might not. The point is that I am seeking God and I am seeking Truth. Right now, I see the Truth of God and I see the truth of my homosexuality. While I don’t believe it to be so, if homosexuality is a sin, God will lead me to that particular Truth when the time is right. Until that time, if it ever comes, all I can do is wait on Him, and remain as fully honest and true to myself and to God as I can.”

It gave me a lot to think about, for sure. Christianity often talks about Truth and God as existing separate from ourselves. I believe this. Christianity also teaches how God does things in his own time, how he loves us individually, and how we have a relationship with Him that is wholly unique; like Jason’s walking stick or Rick's stellar impersonation of William Shatner, only infinitely more beautiful and infinitely more pure. I believe this as well.

I understood these things before I went to college, but it wasn’t until I spoke with Donald that I felt I knew them. It wasn’t until that night in the stairwell that I had a firm grasp on what it means to say that God is Truth and God is Love and that these things, whatever they are, are certainly not us. And definitely not me. In those few moments of conversation, I learned, through the example of a gay Christian (a type of person which, until that moment, I did not believe existed), what it meant to truly submit yourself to God; to believe that he is capable of challenging even the core of your being; and to believe that even in the depths of your understanding, or lack thereof, he is constantly making you more fully human.

I learned that God can, and most certainly does, work through those who are vastly different from us. Here was a man with whom I disagreed on a multitude of subjects, and yet he was still a child of God. It was painfully obvious.

I truly believe that God was speaking through Donald then. I truly believe that Donald was (and probably still is) a believer in Christ. I also truly believe that homosexuality is a sin. And thus we are back to the question of the moment. How can I speak of these men, to whom I owe a great deal of respect, as sinners?

I think it stems from our inability to truly understand sin and how it effects both our relationship with God and our relationships with other people. C.S. Lewis, in his book “The Problem of Pain,” tells us to think of the worst possible human imaginable. Then he tells us to look up, because that person is likely closer to God than we are.

We do, indeed, suck; and greatly so.

The truth of sin is that we all do it in one form or another. And we are quite often oblivious to the worst offenses. Lewis likens our view of sin to that of a tennis player who sees his accomplishments and says that he is, by and large, a good player. The sad truth is that he is a very bad player, who occasionally makes a decent shot now and again. And even these are lucky. We fail to comprehend the depth of our sin by a vast margin, so for us to worry over the faults of others is quite hypocritical despite our intentions. This is what Jesus meant when he said to remove the plank in your eye before addressing the speck in your neighbor's. To do otherwise is merely a case of the blind leading the blind. You'll get somewhere, no doubt, but it isn't likely to be anywhere of use.

I do not call homosexuality a sin out of some sense of moral superiority. We all fall short as far as God is concerned. To claim moral superiority because of a particular sin I have not committed is not pious. It is arrogant, selfish, and stupid. I am not a better person or even closer to God because I am not gay in much the same way I am not closer to God because I do not partake in other sins.

In fact, my whole idea of sin is flawed. Which means that I may, in fact, be wrong in my belief that homosexuality is a sin. People have said that I am a sinner for pointless reasons. They called me a sinner because of the way I dress, the length of my hair (when I had it), the music I listen to, the political beliefs I hold, and countless other things. These opinions make no sense to me. And I imagine my opinion on the subject of homosexuality makes no sense to Jason much in the same way it made no sense to Donald. Much in the same way their opinions make no sense to me. These are not statements of value or human worth. I am not deriding Jason and Donald. I am not even saying that I am 100% sure I am right. I am more than willing to entertain discussion on the idea of homosexuality as a sin and I am quite willing to accept the possibility that I am wrong. I wouldn’t be the first time and it won’t be the last.

This is merely my opinion of the facts as I see them.

I am in search of truth, which means that I am in search of God. I believe that God, like Truth, is separate from me and that he is leading me closer, ever closer, to him. He will eventually show me Truth that is challenging. He will eventually show me Truth that shocks. This may mean that he will one day show me that homosexuality is not a sin. Or that some core belief of mine is, in fact, quite false and quite sinful. It might not. Until then I will keep seeking Truth and I will keep seeking God. I will continue to wait on Him and remain as fully honest and true to myself and to God as I can.

This means realizing that my opinion on homosexuality, or any other sin for that matter, does not give me the right to look down upon Jason and others, judging them against my imperfect view of God’s moral standard. All I can do is Love people to the best of my ability.

In my opinion, this does not mean thumping people over the head with Bibles. It doesn’t mean shouting scripture at them through a bullhorn. It doesn’t mean painting unfair and untrue pictures of homosexuals the way a lot of people do, especially those in the church. It doesn’t mean shying away from them merely because I do not agree or understand the way they live.

And it certainly doesn’t mean sharing a God who promises only fire and brimstone. This God doesn't exist, in my opinion.

It means Love in the truest sense. It means attempting to understand the relationship that Jason shares with his husband even though this is something I am likely incapable of doing, and continuing to ask God to show me the Truth even if that means I will have to change my mind. It means continuing to love others even if God strengthens my beliefs.

It means believing that God loves him just as much as he does me. And it means hoping that one day he will lead us both to his Love and his Truth in the fullest extent.

In the meantime it means praying that God will bless both Jason and his husband, and that he will bring them closer, ever closer, to his heart.

Which is the same prayer I have for everybody else.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Did The Chicken Beget The Egg, Or Was It The Other Way Around?

Despite the fact that he is a poor excuse for a politician and dirty felon (or may be, at least) it seems as though Bob Taft actually got something right. Maybe. I’m all for the analytical review of anything and everything. Slice it up, dice it, throw it under a microscope, smother it in bacon grease and throw it into the books. That’s the way it should be. If, in fact, he is talking about an “analytical review” of evolution and not a “sneaky way to get Intelligent Design into the classroom that isn’t so sneaky now that I come to think about it.”

Surprising as it might be for some to hear, especially from a Christian, but I have no problems with evolution from a religious perspective. And the reason is simple. Religion is religion and science in sciences. There are two reasons people get so upset over this pointless debate: 1) They have a weak understanding of both Christianity and evolution, and 2) they are being political (aka “stupid”).

Evolution, at its most basic, describes how life developed from the basic elements of existence. Genesis tells a story about how life began that is really more about the fallen state of human nature than about sciences. The two don’t really conflict with each other.

Because, once again, science is science and religion is religion (and politics are stupid).

From a scientific standpoint, you can look at the fossil records and gene mappings to your heart’ desire. And more power to you. That is very important. But evolution doesn’t say anything about how we got here. It merely says what happens once we (or, rather, the pieces that would eventually become us) did. The scientific explanations of how we came to exist are known as abiogenesis, and they are a lot more far-fetched (especially since String Theory and the Red Shifties has fallen out of Casey Kasim’s top 40).

Religion, on the other hand, doesn’t really tell us how we got here either, other than to say “God did it.” Christianity isn’t a science lesson; it is a faith lesson. God didn’t intend the Bible to be an full-fledged explanation of how we came to be. God merely said, “I made you…I’ll leave it up to you to figure out how. If you can. Good luck.” The religious person can easily say that God directed evolution, giving it a few tweaks here and there, or that God set up the system to fall in the fashion that it did without any harm to his faith. And really, if you believe that God can create something from nothing it isn’t much of a stretch to believe that God could have used evolution to make the world the way it is today.

There are scientists and theologians who will disagree, and I am willing to entertain their arguments. But those people who claim that science disproves religion or that religion disproves science are, in this instance at least, overstepping their bounds. They are two sides of the same coin. They point towards Truth, albeit from different angles.

So I say teach evolution. I say teach I.D. I say let kids come up with whatever questions pop into their brains. Hold everything as suspect until you can provide a reason to accept it. If somebody comes up with a theory that the whole of existence was borne of several thousand tons of airborne pasta, I say go with it. Challenge the rest of the class to prove him wrong.

Maybe next time he’ll come up with an idea that is a little bit closer to the truth. Maybe next time he’ll come up with something that challenges and defeats commonly held theories and laws, thus extending the realm of human knowledge ever further. After all, you can’t seek the Truth unless you accept the very real and very likely possibility that you are wrong about vast percentages of what you already believe.


Pointless Problems and Worthless Ideas

The biggest problem I have faced today is whether the airlines Air Nambia and Air Namibia are, in fact, as different as everybody else in my office seems to think they are, or whether that difference is due only to a typo from some lazy college student who was half paying attention to his or her summer internship, typing in an extra “i” while he or she was thinking about the previous night’s alcohol-fueled revelry. To be sure, it has been particularly frustrating, especially the part in which I had to translate meaning amongst the pops and clicks of an ancient Swahili-esque tongue when I called the poor souls who run the airline, whatever it’s called. My blood pressure has shot up and I have a headache. I am more than ready to go home. And you wouldn’t have a problem convincing me to take part in a night of alcohol-fueled revelry. Whatever it takes to wipe the memories of this day from existence.

In all honesty, though, it hasn’t been much of a problem. At least I don’t live in or near the Gaza Strip.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Meaning of Life

A friend of mine, after reading a previous post where I raved about my old friends and their musical accolades, asked me what kind a musician I am if I used to play with people of such caliber. The strict answer to that question is, not much. Oh sure. I was a kick ass trumpet player in high school, but that’s like trying to hit on the hot chicks with the line “I had the coolest match box car collection of all my friends when I was 5 years old.” It just makes you look lame. While I have several fond memories from high school (more than the average person, I think…and I am thankful for that), I don’t hold those years on a pedestal. And I certainly do not consider myself anywhere near as good as either of my two friends. I may have been able to do something musically if I’d kept up with it. But I still don’t believe I’d be anywhere near as good. The difference between them and me is that they have a passion for playing good music whereas I enjoyed playing, but hating practicing. I would have given up long ago.

So when I say that I sometimes wish I had kept up with the whole music thing, I don’ really mean it. What I mean to say is that I wish I had done something more useful with my time other than eat pizza and watch stupid movies.

And I’ve seen a lot of stupid movies. Hoo boy.

* * * *

And now, a quote:
"I do, indeed, suck; and greatly so." - The Sasquatch, in response to a philosophy professor who asked him for a concise summary of C.S. Lewis' book, "The Problem of Pain."

I've Got Gas!

If the war in Iraq truly was a war for oil, why the hell did I just spend five million dollars on a tank of gas? I'm not sayin'. I'm just sayin'.

Monday, August 15, 2005

I wanted to write something more substantial today, but the weather cooled off and my roommate woke up early. So we trudged off to play Frisbee Golf at Hoover in the rain. We were surprised to find that they have moved all the baskets back a considerable distance. So instead of shooting my usually 10 to 12 under par, I shot a 2 under par. Plus I got excessively muddy searching for my Frisbee in a pile of mud for nearly twenty minutes.

Yes. I had a great time.

Since I didn’t have time to write something more substantial, and since I know that there may be tens of people out there waiting with baited breath to hear something new and exciting about my dull and boring life, I have compiled yet another pointless list of stupid things that may or may not interest you. Enjoy.

1. In searching the internet for something cool to read, I came across an old friend’s website. Her name is Josie and she plays some groovy tunes for the people in the New England area. I wrote her and she wrote me back. As I told her in the e-mail I just finished, it’s nice to be remembered. And, as I didn’t tell her in the e-mail I just finished, it’s nice to find out that your old friends are doing well. She certainly is. Check her out here.

2.In speaking with Josie, I learned that another old friend, Adam Ross, is doing well on the left coast, playing fancy guitar for important people. I only knew him when he was a freshman, but he and I (and Josie) collaborated once to play a few dumb songs for the pit band at our high school talent show/arts thingy they do every year. Adam played the Jimi Hendrix version of the Star Spangled Banner, and it was really good. The sad thing now is that, where Josie and Adam are now bona fide musicians, I can barely play a C scale on my trumpet.

3. I sometimes wish I had gone into music when I was younger.

4. I fell down the hill today while I was playing Frisbee golf, and I twisted my knee. I swore out loud. A kid preparing to throw his Frisbee on the next hole turned around and looked at me like I had just shot his favorite cat. He wasn’t mad that I had sworn, apparently. I’d heard him swear several times throughout the previous holes. I think he was mad that I had interrupted his shot with my loud gesticulations. I apologized and he turned away, without responding, to make his shot.

5. He threw his Frisbee a mighty two hundred fifty feet. As he left the tee pad, he stooped to pick up his bag of Frisbees that read “Professional Disc Golf Association,” and he turned to look at me as if to say, “beat that shot!”

6. I stepped up to the tee and, with my gimpy leg, threw my Frisbee 50 feet past the hole and a full 100 feet past the guy who so recently gave me a nasty look for swearing loudly when twisting my knee, thus proving once again that in order to be a professional Frisbee golf player, you must also be a complete douche bag.

7. I started writing three short stores this weekend. One of them is cool. The Devil is in it. It’s sort of a Faustian tale with a twist.

8. I hate it when people compare their stuff to classics and then add “but with a twist!” It makes those kind of people sound like douche bags.

9. I get to go to play practice tomorrow for that play I wrote a while ago. I had to take over one of the parts when one of my friends backed out. The sad thing is that everybody in the cast has their parts memorized…except me. Which is sad. Since I wrote the damn thing.

10. I can’t think of anything else interesting to say. Go check out Josie and Adam’s websites.

My jobs sucks less than yours!

Tomorrow is no-work Monday, and I figured that I'd go ahead and get this one out of the way right now since I plan to sleep in all day tomorrow.

No soup for you

Not much to write about here these days. Sorry about that. I do have a couple short stories I’m starting work on, and I think I might try to write a book! It’s a good thing I’m not a writer, otherwise I might be dismayed at my eventual inability to get said stores and book published due to their complete lack of interesting characters or compelling plot. But at th every least it will give me something fun to do when I’m bored at work.

Which is most of the time I’m at work.

I heard that jimi got back from Malawi this week. He was studying something important, apparently. I asked him to explain it to me once and I had no idea what he was talking about. He was excited about it, though, so it has to be good. I haven't seen him yet, though. I went to the Cleveland Browns-NY Giants preseason game yesterday with Tim, Jenny, and Jr. Tim and Jenny got free tickets from some guy they know. It rained a lot. It always seems to rain when I go to professional sporting events. When I was a beer vendor for the Cincinnati Reds, it raimed almost every time I worked. I remember once, I took a day off of my real job to work a businessman's special during the day. It rained the whole time. Not only that, but they scheduled me to work in a section that was dominated by a local elementary school that had won tickets to the game.

Just in case you don't know. You can't make a lot of money selling beer to little kids. Not that I tried, mind you. Not me.

I hear jimi looks like a fat Ernest Hemmingway. Chad says so. I found that particularly funny, since Ernest Hemmingway was already fat. Either way, it's nice to have him back. This means I finally have some real competition in frisbee golf.

Friday, August 12, 2005

More stupidity

And just in case you thought I was biased, politically speaking, here is yet another case of pandering I find pointless and stupid. Sure...lets change the entire plot of the book - so that it is wholly different than what the author intended - in order to avoid offending one or two people.


So what do we do about the recent NCAA annoucnement that no collegiate teams that hope to enter its tournaments are allowed to have offensive names? I like the idea that we need to be less offensive to those who are made, but there are a few things about this that bother me. First, the Florida Seminole tribe has been in constant support of Florida State University's use of their name as a mascot. The tribe voted overwhelmingly in support of this, and they have worked together with FSU to create awareness among the community for the history and culture of the Seminole tribe as well as their current standing as part of American society. The NCAA never contacted them and, in fact, has no Native Americans on its multicultural awareness board.

Then we have the Fighting Ilini from Illinois. The NCAA has stated that the Ilini have to change their name to something less offensive. Which is funny, because there never actually was an Ilini tribe. There was an Illinois tribe, but I guess it would be too much to ask them to change that name since that is already a state name

The Arizona Aztecs are perfectly fine, however, which shows that the NCAA hates Mexicans. So I guess it would be ok to name a team the South Texas State Wetbacks. Or maybe the University of Southern California Runnin' Immigrants. That would be a great idea, huh?

Other Proposed Names That Are Potentially Offensive
The Alabama Honkey Hicks
The Utah Mutli-Marryin' Mormons
The Ohio State Fighting Whiteys
The Washington DC Crack Heads (aka "The Marion Barrys")
The New York State Fighting Jews
The MIT Pocket Protectors
The San Francisco Ferries

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

You like me. You really like me.

The art show was this evening and my story was a big hit. I had the crowd eating out of the palm of my hand (which is interesting, since I have small hands and rarely carry food in them). The final draft of the story weighed in at roughly 4 pages (down from a weighty 6 and a half), and I got to keep most of what I really liked from the original. I was pleased with the result. Afterwards, several people told me that I had done a good job. And they did it a genuine way; not that patronizing way you tell your kids at their first dance recital (even though you really thought it was horrible).

It made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside...just like I feel on the outside! And now I must go to bed. Because if I don't, I think my head is gonna a-splode.

The Sasuatch

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Jumbled Words and Mismatched sentences

I get to read my story about swing dancing this evening. I got the schedule this afternoon, and I was shocked to learn that, while each person had been slated for ten minutes, I was the only one to actually use ten minutes (and then some). As of this evening, my story stood at fiftenn minutes, and even then it sounded like the speed reader from the Micromachine commercials they used to have on television when I was a kid. So I spent the evening working with the Kurt Vonnegut rule that you should automatically cut out 1/3 of everything you write, because that third is probably worthless (assuming anything else you write actually has worth. If it doesn't, just cut it all and become a journalist. Or worse...get a job in marketing). I cut and cut and cut, and when I done with that I cut some more. I can get it in at 10 minutes 15 seconds if I don't mess up or pause to let the audience laugh (which they won't do). I'll try to cut more while I'm at work tomorrow, but I don't know if that will be possible.

There were some jokes about a band that might take a full half hour to play their song, which rivals Innagodadavida in both blandness and pointless lenght. Apparently. I've never heard the song, but I have heard the guitarist/singer and I haven't been too impressed. There are several jokes I could make here, but there is an outside chance the guy in question could read this and I don't want him to read it. Also, it would be mean.

he won't kick my ass, though. He's a skinny bastard and he'd probably run away and drown himself in a bowl of tofu. Dammit! I made a joke!

Time for sleep. I believe that, while I am sleeping, I will listen to Peter Kreeft expound upon the intricasies of evil found in Tolkein's "The Lord of the Rings." You can too!

Monday, August 08, 2005

It's Monday...I Almost Forgot

I love no-work Mondays. Even if all I do is sleep and eat Doritos all day!

Politics Run Amok

I love reading Pandagon. I’ve read them for several years and, in fact, plagiarized their words for several of my papers in college (just kidding). But sometimes they can be wrong. For instance, in this post, Jesse references an article about how long-winded, right-wing blogs often don’t understand the left in their writing.

He says:
But the world of the righty blogosphere sustains itself on the hearty fuel of self-absorption, the consistent and enduring belief that they're doing something just by existing. As such, their standards for excellence seem to be really, really low.

Jesse seems to feel that only those on the right are capable of stupidity. He seems to think that only those on the right fail to misunderstand their opponents. He should go back and read the words he used when he linked the article in question. People with whom you disagree seem much less intelligent because the mere fact that they disagree makes them inherently unlikable. This trait is seen on either end of the political spectrum. The reason is not because “conservatives are morons” or “liberals are idiots” but rather, “People are fucking stupid.”

In trying to claim that only people on the right are stupid, Jesse falls for his own trap. He fails to comprehend what those on the right, those who act honestly and intelligently that is, are really trying to say. He paints half the population with broad, stupid strokes; strokes which many do not deserve.

A good example of this type of thinking can be seen in the discussion of any hot button issue of the day. Take abortion for instance. The very names we use to describe our opinions shows our prejudices. Pro-life assumes that the only issue in the abortion debate is the life of the baby or the fetus. It assumes that those who disagree are pro-death and believe that killing babies is a good thing. Pro-choice assumes that the only issue in the abortion debate is women’s rights. It assumes that those who disagree are anti-choice and would like nothing more than to keep women barefoot and pregnant against their will.

Each side uses the negative terms “pro-death” and “anti-choice” in their rhetoric. You hear it all the time. But if you ask almost anybody in the pro-choice camp if they believe in killing babies, they’ll respond that they do not. Ask almost anybody in the pro-life camp if they believe women should be kept in the kitchen while the men do the real work, and they will say no.

Both sides paint with broad strokes, and both sides are wrong.

The truth of the matter is that abortion, like most political issues, is more complicated than any one angle or any one idea. While most of us, as individuals, are capable of understanding this, we choose to blind ourselves to this truth. We base our political decisions largely upon how much we like a person rather than the strength of their argument. That likeability is often dependent upon how much they agree with us. It then logically follows that we encamp ourselves with groups of people we like rather than those who challenge us, and then act unintelligently by painting our opponents with broad strokes not because what they say is necessarily wrong but because we don’t like them and believe them to be bad.

So when Jesse says things like:

The interesting thing is that much of the righty blogosphere tends to be completely unfamiliar with the left side of things, allowing them to speak as if the random Daily Kos outrages and cursewords from Eschaton stand in for every single thing the right has written. They also tend to fall back on old cliches (as Jay Tea wraps himself up in the old blanket of "conservatives think, liberals hate America feel"), and as the comments to this post prove, tend not to actually read liberal blogs. I can't tell you how many e-mails I've gotten from conservative bloggers and readers who, when I write or link to something that proves them flat-out wrong, come back with an attack on my cursing or a link to a post they did several months ago that proves their utter intellectual superiority to another post I wrote several months ago as a throwoff. Is this epidemic of the entire right-wing blogosphere. No, not its entirety. Just the entire core of it...and most of the outlying inspired blogs and writers. But other than that, it's a-okay.

he does exactly the same thing he criticizes in conservative bloggers. He assumes that he is always right, they are always wrong, and that if only conserva-bloggers would act more intelligently they would cease to be conservative and turn to the light of liberalism. At that point, of course, all badness would cease and everybody would be happy.

The problem is not conservatives. The problem is not liberals. The problem is how we, as people, approach discussion.

You see this kind of activity all over the place. I recently had a conversation with a friend about a theological issue (something to do with Catholicism versus Protestantism). I asked a challenging question and, without warning, he got mad. He said I hated Catholics, he called me an atheist, and he stopped short of telling me that I would end up in Hell for all eternity. He did this all because I asked him to explain his position. I said nothing of my opinion (I never got the chance). But if I had, I would have told him that I am, in fact, a devout Christian and that he and I merely disagree on this particular issue. And I would have stated further that I was quite willing to accept his opinion if he could give me a good explanation. But I never got that chance. He didn’t like me from that point on, and I became the enemy. I became everything against which he and his team had fought for centuries.

I became bad.

I recently took part in a web discussion about the nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Court. I mentioned that I believed the most striking thing about him was that there was a lack of anything controversial or debatable in his past. And I said that even people on the right were saying this. I then quoted a conservative columnist. The response from several people on the website was not to tell me how my conclusions were incorrect (they never addressed my points, actually), but to point out that I was wrong merely because I had quoted somebody they disliked. This hampered later discussions on different topics. They would make a statement; I would ask for clarification (when I didn’t understand what they were saying) or an explanation (when I thought they conclusions were a bit far-fetched); and they would respond that, by merely asking questions, I was spouting Republican talking points and was therefore incorrect.

They disliked me, so they stopped listening.

I have engaged in similar conversations about baseball, movies, music, and, yes, even politics. Quite often, these conversations end with the same results. People think that their opponents are morons because first they believe themselves to be wholly correct when they are often only correct to an extent, and second because it is more comfortable to make this assumption rather than seek the truth. The people with whom they disagree are not very likeable, so it’s easy to make fun of them rather than address the issues at hand.

So when Jesse speaks of people who e-mail him with baseless criticisms, he is right to say that that these people aren’t acting intelligently. They refuse to the Truth of his arguments (or even address his points) and attack other aspects of his nature in order to retain the illusion that he is unlikable and therefore wrong. Jesse does the same thing, however, when he says that the core ideas of the right are at fault in the breakdown of communication and the loss of truth. In this instance, he is acting unintelligently. He assumes that, because of the few stupid people he sees, everybody on the right is unintelligent. The blog he quoted, Wizbang, also does the same thing but from a conservative perspective. They do this because they don’t like their opponents. And they paint with broad strokes so that they can continue to picture conserva-bloggers(in the case of Pandagon) or liberal bloggers (in the case of Wizbang) as toothless morons whose only purpose is to be ridiculed rather than listened to.

People refuse to listen to those with whom they disagree because they do not like to be challenged. They choose to take the easy route and claim that “everybody else” as incorrect because it is more comfortable to do so. People refuse to honestly accept the possibility that they are wrong because they do not like to be challenged. They choose to take the easy route and say that their opinions are always right because it is more comfortable to do so. People refuse to listen to the Truth because they do not like to be challenged. They choose to take the easy route and mask the truth as stupidity because it leaves them in a state of comfort.

And people crave comfort more than they crave Truth.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

The Reds are the Best Team in Baseball

At this evening's baseball game:
Cincinnati Reds players rallied around a 6-year-old boy after his
grandfather collapsed in the stands.

"We just tried to make a bad situation a little better," said
outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.

While paramedics were working on the grandfather, security officer Bill
Summee took the boy to the Reds bullpen. The Reds did not release the name of
the grandfather, who died Wednesday night of an apparent heart attack.

The boy, identified as Antonio Perez of Hamilton, sat with players for the
last two innings of the game, and Griffey went and got him when the game ended.
The boy participated in the Reds' high-fives celebrating their 8-5 victory over
Atlanta, and he then joined the players in the clubhouse.

Clubhouse manager Rick Stowe said the Reds showered the boy with bats,
wristbands, and autographed baseballs. Shortstop Felipe Lopez gave him the
batting helmet, autographed, that Lopez wore in this year's All-Star

The players kept the boy distracted until his parents arrived.

"We play a game," Griffey said. "What he was going through doesn't compare.
It was important that the little guy not be by himself."


Friday, August 05, 2005

Reviews On Reviews Say Reviews Not Up To Snuff

AP Wire - Columbus, Ohio

Reviews for “The Dukes of Hazard,” which opened in theaters on Wednesday, have already begun to hit the Internet and according to experts, there is very little quality to be had.

“I couldn’t believe it!” said Jamie King, a chemical engineer with Proctor and Gamble and mother of three. “I rely upon newspaper editorialists to tell me what to think about movies and this is just another in a worsening trend of movie reviews that are just plain superficial.”

Jamie and many others have complained that the reviews for “The Dukes of Hazard” are clichéd and heavy handed. ”It’s like high school,” says Jason Bingamton, a local Sandwich Artist and recent graduate of Subway University. “One person wrote a review and everybody else copied off of him.”

We sent our crack Internet Research Team onto the net in search of popular movie review sites to see if we could find the truth. And the truth, it is said to say, was frightening.

The Cincinnati Enquirer had this to say about the new summer blockbuster turned flop: “Instead [the director] pours the movie's energy into the car chases, which make no more sense than the plot, but at least allow for plenty of cool sideways driving.”

CNN also derided the plot of the movie, saying “The plot in a nutshell -- which is where it belongs.”

Nearly every review uncovered by our research team followed a particular format. They started by stating that Hollywood had again revamped an intellectually vapid television show into an equally vapid movie.

The editorialist would then follow with a joke either about horny teenage boys, boobs, or Jessica Simpson not quite filling the mental capacity needed to play a brainless hick who was known for shaking her ass on television. The meat of the editorial consists of a parody of the plot, in which the columnist invariably makes a few references to Hee Haw or ill-placed car chase scenes.

Next, in an attempt to sound unbiased, the author will turn to either a redeeming quality of the movie (good special effects) or a joke that they felt was over the heads of most of the audience. In the end, however, the author of the article will revert to his or her previous position, lambasting the plot, Jessica Simpson’s acting skills, or the casting of Burt Reynold’s before closing out the article with a dire warning not to see this movie unless you expect to lose more than a few IQ points in the process.

“It’s really quite sad, says Mark Foot, president and only member of Journalism watchdog group NSACBMA or Newspapers Suck And Can Bite My Ass (online at “With past flops like ‘Showgirls’ and ‘Mystery Men,’ Journalists reveled in finding new and unique ways to deride everybody involved from the lead actor all the way down to the intern who only worked on set for a day. It was really quite cool”

“Now,” according to Foot, “it’s like they’re not even trying.”Foot went on to argue that this is a trend that was long in coming.

“I think it started with American Pie 2 and went downhill from here,” he said. “By the time we got to Starsky & Hutch and Gigli, it seemed like journalists were phoning it in.”

Mary Spooneybarger, spokesperson for the Society of Professional Journalists, however, places the blame squarely on Hollywood..

“There are only so many ways you can make fun of a film before you have to repeat yourself, “she said. “Past film flops excelled in their stupidity and banality. These new films are only unremarkable in their unremarkability. If Hollywood would bring back the glory days of bad filmmaking, we wouldn’t be forced to lower our standards.”

Whose fault is it, then? Do op/ed movie reviews suck because journalists are lazy or because Hollywood is resting on its laurels?

“I think it’s a conspiracy against the media,” Spooneybarger claims. “I think they’ve had it out for us ever since we sabotaged that ‘Iron Giant’ movie back in the mid’90s.”

Others, however, aren’t so sure.

“This feels like a chicken-and-the-egg type of scenario,” says Ohio State University professor of philosophy, Tim Jörgensson. “We may never know.”

Jörgensson then added, “Hey dude, you wanna hit this bong?”

While we may never know the root cause of such a decline, the fact that such a decline exists cannot be denied. Purists like Mark Foot and hack writers like Mary Spooneybarger can agree, at least, that this is a problem that will have to be addressed.

Or else people like me will have to take over. And nobody wants that.

Nerd Audit

In the vein of Pandagon’s coolness audits, I’m doing a nerd audit. Because I’m never cool and I never will be. The lower the score the better

1) “Irish Drinking Song” by Da Vinci’s Notebook. A Capella ruminations about the finest of liquors coupled with snazzy rhymes and a chorus in which the response to massive amounts of familial death is to drink so much that you “throw up, pass out, wake up and then go drinkin’ once again.” You can’t beat that with a 10 meter cattle prod. 0/10

2) “You know you wrong,” by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. This is the only good song on their most recent album, in my opinion. But then I never could get behind New Orleans Jazz (thus my distaste for the Squirrel Nut Zippers). Still, these guys were in “Swingers,” and they were hip for a while during the great swing revolution of 1998. So I get a 5/10.

3) “Fell in Love with a Girl” by the White Stripes. Crap. There went my nerdiness. The White Stripes are the epitome of hip, and the fact that I think they could use a better drummer - and that I know their drummer’s name – gives me extra credit for hipster pretention. This one goes all the way to 11, baby! 11/10.

4) “Albequerque” by Weird Al Yankovic. Ah yes. Back to the roots of geekdom. I was once at a party where the host, who I knew to be a nerd, believed himself to be a connoisseur of cool music. The party was going well, with the requisite smattering of “The Killers” and “The Strokes” and a few other bands nobody knew but pretended they did in order to look cool. Then weird Al came on the radio and a hush fell over the crowd. The host was a nerd and everybody knew it. He could no longer hide behind his expensive jeans and Spanish, wraparound sunglasses. After a close call, I again fall into the pit of despair. 0/10.

5) “Big Bottom” by Spinal Tap. Have you seen the movie? Did you know that Spinal Tap is a fake band? Did you know that they are the same guys as The Folksmen from “A Mighty Wind?” Did you know that the bass player, Harry Shearer, does half the voices on “The Simpsons?” Did you notice that I have already referenced this movie with song #3, and that Christopher Guest, who plays Nigel Tuffman in the Spinal Tap Movie, also plays the six-fingered man in the movie I referenced at the end of song #4? If you did, you are a true paragon of intellectual superiority. You probably even wear a pocket protector! 3/10

6) “Triangle Man” by They Might Be Giants. This was the seminal hit for TMBG before it was cool to like TMBG. This was the song that you rocked out to when everybody else in the room just looked at you and shook their heads in utter horror and disbelief. 1/10.

7) “Innagadadavida” by Iron Butterfly…the full version with the three-week-long drum solo. Sometimes a nerd can be a hippie as well. You’d get a 5/10, but because I know that this was the song that played over the last half hour of the movie “Manhunter” which came back with greater fame several years later as the movie “Red Dragon” minus this song and all the early ‘80s hair, I get a 2/10.

8) “Get Down” by Nas. WTF? 5w337!! OmFG!!! U R The r0x0r!!!1!! oneone! 6/10

9) “The Theme Song to Jurrasic Park” by John Williams. …. -4/10

10) “Mullett” by Dum Dog Run. When your friend’s band comes up on the list, you know you’re sunk. If my parents had a basement, I’d be there right now, drinking Mountain Dew straight from the bottle and arguing about politics on Fark while attempting to draw boobs on an etch a sketch. 1/10.

Grand total: 2.6 (assmuming you accept Einstein’s approximation of the universal constant “C”). I might be lame, but at least I get to listen to…Da vinci’s notebook?


Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Cool Music

I checked out the most recent online service from my old church in Cincinnati, and I found that the worship band did an accoustic set with some really neat percussion added in. It was cooler than pimp daddy Churchill. Check it out here (if you have real player) (the best song is at 18:26)

For a limited time, those with high-speed internet can click here

Waste of Time

Each of these answers is completely true. Really.
+ your name: The Sasquatch
+ your gender: Woodland Animal
+ your birthday: Devil’s Night
+ height: 5’10”
+ eye color: chameleon
+ your location: my bedroom
+ fears: clowns, sewers, and Stephen King Books about Clowns in Sewers

+ cheated on someone? Nope. That would involve having someone on whom to cheat.
+ fallen off the bed? No (it would be funny of you added “while cheating on someone”).
+ fallen for a relative? I tripped in front of my sister once while I was trying to tell her not to trip over a step she hadn’t seen.
+ had plastic surgery? How do you think I got rid of that third arm?
+ broke someone's heart? Yes…with a baseball bat! It was plastic model of a heart, though, so don’t be afraid.
+ had your heart broken? Do heart attacks count?
+ had a dream come true? No. I dreamt once that I was driving down a large highway being chased by a witch’s hat that shot laser beams out of the top. I hope that doesn’t come true again.
+ done something you regret? Yes, like starting this survey!
+ cheated on a test? nope
+ been depressed? I’m depressed right now! Who told you?

+ wearing: a t-shirt that says “Wright State University Welcome Week 1998” and a hat that says “I’m glad I’m not fishing.” There are other things, but they are unimportant.
+ listening to: the sounds of the television in the living room, which make little sense and sound like Mexicans screaming into a tin can.
+ chewing: that flimsy piece of plastic you find on the inside of soda bottle caps. I have ripped it into several pieces; several of which are currently stuck between my teeth.
+ feeling: the keyboard (what else am I supposed to put my hands when I’m typing?)
+ reading: “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis, “The Brothers Karamazov” by Fyodor Dostoevsky, and “Dress your family in corduroy and denim” by David Sedaris.
+ located: my bedroom
+ chatting with: the voices in my head, which sound an awful lot like a large crowd of Ricardo Mantalban clones.
+ watching: my neighbor shower
+ should REALLY be: either sleeping or out roaming the streets in search of food.

SECTiON 4 [ DO YOU... ]
+ brush your teeth: What? You mean there are people out there who use brush on their teeth?
+ like anybody: I like lots of people.
+ believe in God: Oh yeah!
+ believe in Santa Claus?: Bitch, I AM Santa Claus!
+ ever get off the computer: that is disgusting and I respectfully ask that you retract that question.

+ do you belong to a crew: I used to be a member of a group known as “Big Joe and the Lesbian Entourage” but now I am just a nameless face in a sea of nerds. There may or may not be lesbians.
+ do you hang out with the opposite sex: yes, but they’re usually lesbians. At least, that is what they tell me when I try to hit on them. I wonder why every woman I meet tells me she is a lesbian?
+ do you consider yourself popular: Credit Card companies do, so I guess that means yes
+ do you trust your friends: to do what? If you meant to ask if I trust my friends not to paint my face with pickes and toothpaste after a night of heavy drinking then I must say no, sadly, I don’t trust my friends.
+ are you a good friend: Yes, because I return the favor.
+ can you keep a secret: no. I keep forgetting what the person told me. So I eventually lose it.

+ hugged: my mother
+ IMed: I can’t remember. I don’t know how to use a computer.
+ talked to on the phone: Miguel Balestrios, a 57 year old pilot from toluca, Mexico. I asked him if his taxiways were filleted. He said yes. Yes they are.
+ fell in love with: a cardboard cutout of Kathy Ireland. I was sixteen and we dated for a month until she cheated on me with a cardboard cutout of Gilbert Godfried. I’ll never forgive her, and if I ever catch that annoying bastard, I’m going to poke a hole in his carboard left hand and leave him in standing water so he rots and will have to be thrown away.
+ turned down: I never turn down women. I am hopelessly desperate.

+ What do you want to be when you grow up? Michael Jordan.
+ What was the worst day of your life? The day I woke up from a dream involving me standing on a large pedestal, dressed in sun-god robes, while beautiful women threw little pickles at me. I was sad to find out that this had been a dream.
+ What has been the best day of your life? The night I went to bed and had that dream.
+ What comes first in your life? birth
+ Do you have a boyfriend/girlfriend/crush? No, the state of Ohio put a stop to that with the restraining order.
+ If you had an extra set of eyes where would you put them? My friend said, “in the girl’s shower room.” Mine is close, but more specific. I would put my eyes in the locker room of the local college’s women’s volleyball team
+ What do you think about before you go to bed? Infiniti and Jelly donuts.

+ Movie: Back to the Future
+ Song: Over the Hills and Far Away by Led Zeppelin. + Singer: Barry White…awwww yeah!
+ Store: Half Price Books.
+ Relative: all of them
+ Sport: Baseball, bitches!
+ Vacation Spots: the locker room of the local college’s women’s volleyball team
+ Candy: the local college’s women’s volleyball team.
+ Holiday: Thanksgiving, for some reason.
+ Day of the Week: Fridays in autumn. Saturdays the rest of the year.
+ Magazine: none
+ Name for a Girl: Reagan. I don’t know why. I just like the name.
+ Name for a Boy: Aeschylus

SECTiON 9 [ DO YOU . . .]
+ Like to give hugs: not really.
+ Prefer black or blue pens: why must you advocate violence against the poor writing instruments? You fiend!
+ Dress up on Halloween: I put on clothes if that is what you're asking.
+ Have a job: I sit at my desk and pretend to work. They pay me money at the end of the work. If that is what you consider a job, then I have one.
+ Like to travel: I love to travel, but I rarely get the chance.
+ Like someone: pay attention, dumbass, you already asked that question.
+ Sleep on your side, tummy, or back? Yes…all at the same time.
+ Want to marry? Eventually. But not today. Why? Are you proposing to me?
+ Have a goldfish? No, I ate it for dinner.
+ Ever have the falling dream? Yes, I once dreamt that I was at my friend’s house. She informed me that she was pregnant. Immediately after that, an evil orangutan jumped out from the behind the fridge, fired a few shots at me from an AK-47, then leapt out the window. I followed in hot pursuit. It turned out that their house sat atop a large cliff, and as the orangutan and I fell, we had a light saber duel. He landed in the water before I did, and before I could anything, he jumped in a Hummer and drove away. We locked eyes as he passed me, and I knew that one day he’d be back. One day.
+ Have stuffed animals? No. That’s strange.
+ Go on vacation? Not anymore. The local college has a restraining order.

+ Abortion: I don’t share my opinion on this unless I know you very well.
+ Eating Disorders: I know it’s mean and wrong to say so, but I love those pictures with fat guys who wear shirts that say, “I beat anorexia.” I don’t care who you are. That’s funny right there.
+ Summer: way too short.
+ Tattoos: I would like to quote my friend Sean who said, “Female Cellists should get F holes on their backs.” I don’t know what that means, but it sounds cool.
+ Make-up: I never would have passed college if it weren’t for make-up exams.
+ Drinking: a necessary function of human existence. If you don’t drink water, you die. Plain and simple.
+ Guys: huh?
+ Girls: what?

+ Be serious or funny? Seriously Funny.
+ Simple or Complicated? yes
+ MTV or BET? no
+ 7th Heaven or Dawson's Creek? NO!
+ Sugar or salt? Ketchup
+ Silver or gold? KETCHUP!
+ Tongue or belly button ring? Both…with a chain connecting them!
+ Chocolate or flowers? Chocolate flowers! It’s like having your cake and eating it, too.
+ Angels or miracles? Is this title of the new Dan Brown novel I keep hearing about?
+ Color or Black or white? Are you calling me a racist? What the hell, man, I thought we had a rapport?
+ Sunrise or sunset? Sunset: Ah, but isn’t each sunset really a sunrise somewhere else? isn't it Tevyeh?
+ M&M's or Skittles? I said ketchup. Weren’t you listening?
+ Rap or Rock? Jazz, bitches!
+ Stay up late or sleep in? uh..don’t they go hand in hand?
+ TV or radio? Ketchup?
+ Hot or cold? medium
+ members of the opposite sex taller or shorter? Slightly shorter than me. Slightly.
+ Sun or moon? I hate it when people moon me.
+ Diamond or Ruby? Jack Ruby was definitely a more influential hitman than Nick the Diamond.
+ Left or Right? Utilitarianism.
+ 10 acquaintances or one best friend? solitude
+ Vanilla or chocolate? You are trying to goad me into racism, aren’t you, you bastard?
+ Half-empty or Half-full? Completely empty and nearing a refill.
+ Mustard or ketchup? I think you know the answer to that one.
+ Newspaper or Magazine? teh intarweb !!1!!111one!!11 lol omfg!
+ Spring or Fall? It’s called autumn.
+ Give or receive? (*laughs hysterically*)
+ Happy or sad? Contentment. It’s the closest we can ever come to sustained happiness.
+ sneakers or sandals? I’ve never heard of “sandals,” but “sneakers” was a pretty good movie.
+ McDonald's or Burger king? How many times do I have to tell you…ketchup!
+ Lights on or off? (*still laughing hysterically*)
+ A house in the woods or the city? Woods. + Pepsi or Coke? Diet Mountain Dew.
+ Nike or ADIDAS? Nike tastes better than Adidas.
+Do you own a gun? A water gun!
+Have you ever killed an animal? I shot a man once just to watch him die.
+Are you Irish? Aye, me ladee. Shor’n I be wishin a foine marnin’ on ya. A foine marnin, indeed!+What do you think of hot dogs? If they spent more time in the shade they might not get so hot (AH HA HA HA HA HA HA!)
+What's your favorite Christmas song? Baby Got Back…..what? Why are you looking at me like that
+What is your favorite smell? (*laughing hysterically*)
+What do you prefer to drink in the morning? KETCHUP!
+Do you do pushups? Cock pushups?
+Have you ever done ecstasy? No, but I hear she’s easy.
+Have you been shot? Yes. In the shoulder with a bee bee gun when I was 13.
+Have you ever been hospitalized? Yes. It was a heart attack that turned out to be a bad contacts perscription.
+Do you like painkillers? Only when they work.
+What is your secret weapon to lure in the opposite sex? Isn’t that the point of cock pushups?
+Do you own a knife? Steak knife!
+Do you have A.D.D.? I’m terrible at math.
+Do you love the pain a tattoo brings? Yes, especially the part where the person sees it start to sag as they get older and can no longer live with the pain of embarrassment.
+Name Five Drinks You Regularly Drink:-Diet Mountain Dew – Ketchup – Rainwater – Hydrochloric Acid – and a strange mix of the previous 4 (what I like to call “Bud Light”)
+What's In Your CD Player? Dust.
+What's Under Your Bed? Demons and other assorted ghouls. And maybe a few pencil shavings.
+What Time Did You Wake Up Today? I didn’t. I’ve been up since yesterday.
+Current Hair? Nonexistent.
+Current Worry? That I won’t ever finish this stupid survey.
+Current Love? Pancakes and ketchup
+Current Hate? politics
+Favorite Place To Be? My old vacation spot.
+Least Favorite Place? Mexican prisons.
+If You Could Play An Instrument? I play a mean kazoo.
+One person From Your Past You Wish You Could be with Right Now? Who says I’m not with her right now? And who says it's just one?
+Where Would You Like To Go? To sleep.
+Favorite food? DON’T YOU LISTEN? K-E-T-C-H-U-P!
+Color of most clothes you own? Depends on what I’ve been eating and how drunk I was at the time.
+Number of pillows you sleep with? (*Laughing hysterically*)
+What do you wear when you go to sleep? Selma Hayek.
+What were you doing 12AM last night? Selma Hayek.
+What do you think you'll be doing in 10 years? Heh heh…Selma Hayek.
+Are you paranoid? I don’t know…am I? Do I come off that way? Oh no! What if I am?
+Do you burn or tan? I skip all that and just shave off a few layers of skin. Its easier that way.
+Last person you yelled at? Some dude named Mazer. And it was online, too, so it make me look even more like a dick.
+Last thing you ate? Selm….I mean, ketchup!
+If you could be a pirate, would you? No…piracy doesn’t really have good health benefits these days.
+What songs do you sing in the shower? Volga Boatmen.
+When and why did you last vomit? When I went to see “The Ring 2”…because it was “The Ring 2.”
+What's in your pockets right now? All that money I stole from the liquor store.
+what color are your bedroom walls? It depends on what I was eating and how drunk I was at the time.
+last thing that made you laugh? When I mentioned Selma Hayek a few seconds ago.
+any pets now? I have a roommate. Does that count?
+inny or an outty? Annie!
+If you were a crayon what colour would you be? A “Stop asking dumb fucking questions” crayon. Failing that, red.
+Have u ever won any awards? Yes. I won a bowling tournament when I was in high school and I was awarded 2nd place in region 7 for collegiate opinion news writing. I don’t know what region 7 is, but it must have been important because the guy handing out the awards had a deep voice and looked like the reanimated corpse of Julius Sumner Miller. I also won the "most unremarkable" award in high school.
+How many TV's do you have in your house? 42
+Have you ever sprained/broken/fractured a bone or gotten stitches: I used to get paid to do that! Oh…you meant my bones! Then no.
+Who do you tell your dreams to? You.
+What do you think of the person who posted this before you Not much. He seems cool and all, but I don’t often ponder the nuances of our friendship.


The day is over. That's all I have to say about that.


Story removed due to the author's grandiose delusions that he might try to publish it. If you would like to read the story that goes by the name "Swing" in its semi-final stage (much different that what was previously here), e-mail him and he might send it to you.

If you know know his e-mail address.

Deleted by author

deleted by author

Monday, August 01, 2005

No Work Monday!

Today is no work Monday...heh heh...alright!