Heartless Cruelty to the Harmless Is my Forte

by anna at 07:20 PM on August 31, 2004

Sorry about the Anna Marathon. After this I'll shut up and someone else can take the stage.

When choosing a college major it's important to consider the impact on your sex life. Guys who choose such fields as engineering, computer science or (as in my case) forestry will enjoy few opportunities to hit on classmates; just as girls who choose to major in English Lit won't meet many straight guys.

My forestry class was about 70% male and the women looked like they should reside under a bridge. Therefore my carnal life consisted mainly of choking the chicken.

There was one exception named Linda, who I met at a party. It was awkward because she was 5'9" and I'm 5'6". I played Barney Rubble to her Betty, Napoleon to her Josephine. To bridge the gap I'd wear boots and she'd wear flats. She'd walk around with that compensatory hunched-shoulder posture so common among gangly gals who lack self-confidence.

I spent a couple weeks at her parents' house. I remember how silly it seemed that I had to stay in their guest room. Every night she'd join me and scurry back to her room before sunup. I recall a mishap on a raft in my parents' pool. And that is it. The relationship didn't so much sour as fizzle out due to lack of interest, much like Michael Jackson's career.

I never gave Linda a second thought after graduation. Dad was dying and greedy developers were poised to raze his landmark restaurant once he'd drawn his last breath. Whore Hey was on trial for CCE, facing life. I myself faced DWI charges. It was a stressful time. I'm at the restaurant sipping beers as an infant sips breast milk.

The hostess tells me I have a call. It's her. She's in town and wants to get together. She claims she's never stopped thinking about me for all those years. Now even if I hadn't been happily married the last thing I wanted to do was rekindle our Mutt and Jeff relationship. So I tell her about my lovely wife and that was that. Well, almost. She forlornly asks if my marriage is a happy one, as though if it weren't we could still hook up on the sly. That was one of the most pathetic things I'd ever heard, and I told her so. She hangs up sobbing.

While she was a study in nonchalance, you just know it was one of those indecisive deals where you dial the number and quickly hang up. Said hostess confirmed my suspicions. There had been some telltale dial tone calls prior to this one. Much ado over nothing, I thought.

By way of contrast, I had what I thought was a pretty intense relationship with a girl who owned a two-seater sports car. A friend of ours was driving it and she was perched on my lap. Out of nowhere she says she wants him and starts kissing him on the mouth at a stoplight. Horns blared and I bailed.

I impart these woeful tales not just to make you cringe but because they illustrates a point. Most of us have three categories of past relationships: Long-forgotten trysts, vaguely recalled ones as the one with Linda and those we wistfully view as the one that got away. In the case of the latter, it's doubtful the person could pick you out of a police lineup full of dwarves and you.

Why it is that something so trivial to one person could mean so much to another remains one of life's little mysteries. Or does it?

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I'll make it to the moon if I have to crawl

by anna at 10:35 AM on August 29, 2004

"We don't get fooled again!" --- George W. Bush.

On Tuesday a monumental event will transpire. Few will notice, fewer still will care. Read on to find out what it's all about.

cont'd »

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And the northern girls with the styles they wear

by anna at 06:44 PM on August 27, 2004

This summer I've had the pleasure of spending a week each in the two premier beach resorts in the mid-Atlantic seaboard, Outer Banks NC and Wildwood NJ. Thus I'm in a position to bring you a blatantly generalistic critique of both populations.

cont'd »

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The Nerves Begin

by snaggle at 02:23 PM on August 27, 2004

So it's set. This coming Tuesday, I pack as many of my worldly belongings into my little Civic as will fit and head out West. Still looking for a job, but I have a place to live, so that's good.

I'm terrified. Stark, raving, shaking, terrified. I'm not too sure if it's moving to a new place and starting a new life, or just having to grow up. I mean, now I leave school behind and actually enter the real world. Now I'm no longer a "college student," cradled in the sheltering bosom of academia, but forced to endure the harsh realities of Life.


I'm driving from Waterloo, IA, to Lawrence, KS , where I'll be hanging out with a friend for a day or so, then on through Denver, I think, to Los Angeles. If anyone wants to meet for coffee on the road, let me know.

Wish me luck.

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Johnny B Critical

by adam at 09:50 PM on August 25, 2004

I've been hearing a lot of noise about John Kerry's criticism of the Vietnam War, and I have to admit that even after hitting myself repeatedly in the forehead with a mallet I don't understand what the fuss is about. Are there still people in this country who believe that the Vietnam War was a good idea? Let's make a little tally:

Number of US Troops Killed: 47,378
Number of South Vietnamese Troops Killed: 223,748
Number of Communist Troops Killed: 1.1 million
Number of Vietnamese Civilians Killed: 4 million (approx 13% of the population)
Other Countries Destabilized: 2
Number of Civilians Dead in Those Countries: unknown, estimates range from .5 million to 1 million
Number of Democracies Preserved: 0
Number of Democracies to Begin With: 0

Ok, so lots of us got killed, millions of other people, both soldiers and civilians, got killed, and we succeeded in ... what? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. We supported the bad guys in a popular revolt, ignored the advice of every single one of our allies, and got our heads handed to us by a third-world country.

Why are we still arguing about this? The Vietnam War was an incredibly bad idea, perpetrated by blind old men who couldn't admit that they were wrong. John Kerry was RIGHT to criticize our participation in that mess, and if he played a part in embarassing our government enough to pull out, then bully for him. And more to the point: he wasn't some hippy talking about peace and love. He actually went there, and when he came home he wasn't talking in hypotheticals, he was bearing witness.

This is 2004, and we still don't understand one very important thing: it's the right and the duty of a citizen in a democracy to let our elected leaders know when they're doing something stupid, and to yell louder if they're not listening. You're not a traitor for objecting to idiocy, and in this country the president isn't a king who is above answering for his actions. He is first only among equals, and we have no duty to follow him to ruin.

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When I was younger, so much younger than today

by ezy at 09:43 AM on August 25, 2004

When I was a youngster I lived in a neighborhood with a group of kids that happened to all be around the same age. We used to play whatever sport was in season which, to us, meant football and baseball. Summer, Fall, Winter and Spring we were out playing until dark or sometimes after. The after dark times would usually be broken up by one Mother or another shrieking at the top of her lungs for her child to get home or face the God of all punishments, grounding. All of us, as a collective, would have taken a whipping rather than the drawn out agony of being grounded. Whatís my point? Well, Iím not too sure yet but I think it hinges on how different kids are today.

cont'd »

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More Bad Advice

by anna at 09:30 AM on August 21, 2004

Our travel plans got scuttled, so here I am with some sage advice for the lovelorn among you.

cont'd »

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Not Skeerd

by adam at 12:37 AM on August 20, 2004

I think everyone here feels the same way about Iranian judo champ Arash Miresmaeili backing out of his match with an Israeli opponent: totally bogus. Not only did he back out, but he escaped the punishment generally meted out to athletes who choose the Olympics to make political statements because he was, ahem, too overweight to compete.

It seems that Iran backs out of EVERY international athletic match that requires that they compete against the Israelis. The Iranians portray this as some sort of grand patriotic gesture against the Zionist Entity, but I think we all know the truth: they fear The Hebrew Hammer. Seriously, the Iranians know that they're not 100% guaranteed to win, and couldn't stomach a possible defeat at the hands of their enemies, so they bail. For a bunch of big, burly dudes, that's a pretty wuss move.

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It's like rain on your wedding day

by anna at 07:04 PM on August 19, 2004

The reason most wedding receptions aren't as fun as MG's is that there are too many requisite old people that must be invited from both sides. Usually you can only invite so many people and Uncle Charlie, Aunt Ruth, Grandma and the parents are all a given. This crowds out the rowdy friends that make for a better party. Alas.

cont'd »

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and we're gonna stay together for a million years....

by mg at 10:18 AM on August 19, 2004

...continued from the other day.

So, despite the fact that we were already married, and despite the fact we have a two-month old child, we decided to have a “wedding.”

cont'd »

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I was gambling in Havana, yeah I took a little risk

by anna at 06:43 PM on August 18, 2004

Golden hates us. We're smalltime gamblers who risk pittances.

cont'd »

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i'm gonna make you love me, i'm gonna dry your tears

by mg at 10:36 PM on August 17, 2004

I’ve always meant to tell this story here, but I don’t think I ever have.

As you might be aware, I’m recently married. By recently, I mean since November. So, it is only recent if you consider something that happened nearly a year ago to be recent. It doesn’t seem that long though, which is a good thing. I’d rather feel I was married just yesterday than wondering when I woke up each morning how long my nightmare had lasted, and how I was going to stand another day with my harpy of a wife.

cont'd »

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It could have been us

by northstar at 08:27 PM on August 17, 2004

In small town, almost all is lost: In Punta Gorda, bull's-eye for Hurricane Charley, Friday was a night of terror and destruction. Saturday was a day of shock and searching.

Initial damage estimate of $5B- $11B from Charley

How to help

I am not certain that I can find the words to adequately describe just how truly fortunate I've felt for the past few days. I've had several "there but for the grace of [insert name of your particular deity here]" moments. It's not exactly a leap to realize that what has happened in SW Florida could just as easily have happened here in Miami.

Punta Gorda is just on the other side of the Florida Peninsula from Miami, perhaps a 3-4 hour drive away. If you look at a map, it doesn't take long to see that the difference between Hurricane Charley hitting Florida's southwest coast versus it's densely-populated southeast coast is the width of a metaphorical eyelash.

As of this morning, the official death toll is 19. By the time all is said and done, the death toll is expected to rise as emergency workers break into apartments and mobile homes in a search for the dead and/or injured. It seems that not everyone took the evacuation orders seriously, and some folks paid for their ignorance with their lives. Trying to wait out a Category 4 Hurricane is not something to be done lightly, or with any reasonable hope for survival.

cont'd »

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by adam at 12:25 AM on August 17, 2004

This weekend was easily the best one I've had in months. I went to a show in Williamsburg on Friday and didn't get washed away by the waves of irony that the band was generating. I went to the Gap on Saturday and won a new pair of pants at the register, and I never win anything. Then I took my sister and her husband out for dinner and dessert, and we actually had a good time! No one fought/got killed at all! Later I went out to a club, didn't get hassled by the bouncer, had a few drinks and still woke up the next morning without a hangover. Seriously, just a great weekend.

Oh, and I got engaged.

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Here for the Party

by anna at 06:58 PM on August 16, 2004

Perhaps you've heard of this girl. She caused a big furor round these parts by posting about her sexual affairs with a number of highly connected government types. There is no industry more stodgy than lawmaking, so this constituted Big News for a day or so.

So she loses her lousy 25k gig for misusing government computers, as if everyone doesn't surf the web @ work. She is vilified not so much for her promiscuity but for having the balls to brag about it online. All six of her lovers suffered no consequences (and prompptly dropped their plaything like a hot potato.) This, despite the fact that they were married and she wasn't, and thus arguably free to couple with the pope if she so chooses. And of course, it takes two or more to tango.

Although she did accept money from them, she didn't solicit it. Her understanding was that the payments were in lieu of actual dates. Her female boss arranged some of the liaisons, in effect pimping her out. Yet she too flitted away without so much as a stern reprimand.

The usually staid Washington Post ran an article about her Sunday. It contained one line that floored me: "She was a blog slut but she was our blog slut." The author also made a point of branding her as an example of the postmodern, angst-ridden slacker daughters of feminism and blah, blah, blah. Not once did he consider that maybe she was just young, confused and looking to have a good time. That and help makes ends meet like the rest of it. Authors are always trying to read too much symbolism into mundane things.

It had a real salacious tone to it. Case in point: One post in which she described turning down a handsome sum for anal. In so doing she demonstrated that she has principles. She also dispelled a common stereotype about Asian girls.

While it's undeniable that today's young women are nonchalant if not aggressive when it comes to sex, they continue to get the short end of the stick. (Oh wait, that didn't come out right.) A gal accepts cash for head and she's a gutter slut. A guy gets paid and he's called a gigolo. A gal juggles six guys and she's a whore. A guy does the same thing and he's a freaking Lothario. In Muslim countries, male whoring around is sanctified in the state religion. It's called a harem.

There was also a digression about blogs in general and the fact that the last people you'd want to read your online musings inevitably happen across your site. The author mentioned this Mormon chick who's parents were horrified to learn of her sexplay, drunken exploits and dope use. But I would think the odds of that happening are minimal.

Whenever mainstream media mentions blogging, they always act like it's some newfangled fad that hardly anyone has even heard of. Never mind that there must be a million blogs out there, counting those weird orphan blogs that just seem to end one day. They always have to point out that the term blog is a contraction of Web log. Which is like saying that can't is a contraction of can not.

Speaking of which, you can not peruse Jessica's shortlived, X-rated blog. She deleted it from her work computer in what turned out to be her last activity at work. And she posed for Playboy. And inked a six figure book deal to write about her naughty exploits. I guess it all works out in the end, no?

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I'm not ready for this sort of thing

by anna at 09:43 AM on August 15, 2004

I'm eating my lunch at Boston Market. The place is small and crowded. A line snakes halfway around it. Patrons are cranky and touching one another and not in a good way. A sleak BMW oozes up. From it emerges a woman who looks like the embodiment of Barbie; swiveling in that hyper-girly way popularized by Marilyn Monroe. I don't find her look in the least bit attractive. It's too much information, like a bad acid trip. Others would evidently beg to differ.

Her hair is tinted with streaks of honey blonde as you might see on a hair dye box. She's wearing a considerable amount of makeup, seemingly pricy, but not distasteful. She is what I call girl-chubby, fat in some fashionable girl's eyes but fine to most guys. Maybe 5'7" 130 lbs. She's sporting spiked heels, but nothing garish. Well, there was the slit animal print dress and lots of flashy jewelry (no wedding band.) Her figure was of a type God has yet to produce, almost cartoonish in its dimensions. She strolls in engrossed in several cell phone conversations at once. All eyes are upon her.

She's slathered in perfume. Her tan is even, salon even. She's peering out over Wayfarers perched upon her surgical nose. The slightest push would send her top-heavy ass reeling to the ground.

The already uncomfortable temp rose perceptibly. Guys threw down their newspapers to stare at her intently and openly. Just as overtly, women glared at her like some kind of criminal. The guy behind the counter keeps fumbling her order. She takes it in stride. Some other guy in line tries to strike up a conversation with some lame remark like, "I see you got the white meat quarter chicken. I usually get that but today I went with the meat loaf. Something different." She says, "I always get the chicken. I'm watching my figure." Trust me, she's not the only one. His eyes are glued to her chest the entire time. You could feel his pain. And you got the feeling he felt compelled to blurt something, anything, out to her.

A lot of good that did. She gets her order to go and hurries away. I surmised that this was of necessity. Nothing like trying to eat a quarter chicken daintily with dozens of eyes on you. Then it occured to me: This person is being deprived of her basic rights based on her looks alone.

Why were the usual rules of ogling conduct (a quick, discreet once-over at most) suspended? Why all the cold and catty glares from the gals? I concluded that when you sculpt yourself into some kind of exagerated fem-bot, enriching plastic surgeons, stylists, tanning salons and jewelers in the process, people consider you fair game. It may not be fair but that's the way it is. Oddly she didn't really seem to mind, or even notice. Go figure.

These meticulously groomed and sculpted women are never married or even visibly attached. Maybe guys don't consider them marriage material. Maybe they don't want to be tied down. Or maybe once they do wed they stop paying such slavish attention to every detail of their appearance. I dunno. Do you?

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Sheela na Gig, you exhibitionist

by jean at 05:42 AM on August 15, 2004

This'll be short. I just want to say that I watched the end of the Olympics Opening Ceremonies, and was very happy with the lighting of the flame, because it had a lot of nice vaginal imagery. Yup. At first, I thought it was phallic imagery, because a man holding a torch ran up a ramp and lit an enormous, 102-foot high torch that was standing on a big black base. You can see a picture here. Then that huge torch swivelled upright so that its flaming tip was in the sky. "This is not a penis," I thought to myself. But... when the triumphant erection was followed by fireworks all along the edge of the big, er, oval, er, open stadium, like this and this, I decided that what I was looking at was actually the most like a big ol' vagina. Cool.

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California Dreaming

by anna at 07:57 AM on August 13, 2004

Today the Summer Games kick off. Yet already there has been Drama, with lightly regarded Iraq thrashing powerhouse Portugal 4-2. The squad won't need to worry about being castrated by Uday Hussein tonight. Oh wait, he's dead.

But let's face it, most of the Summer games are a huge bore. Weightlifting, wrestling and especially track and field put me to sleep in a hurry. The marquee event is basketball. In years past, that has meant a fierce competition for the silver and bronze as Team USA had the gold locked up. No more. Last time the Americans barely survived a rim-clanging, buzzer-beater by Lithuania to win the semifinals. This year they've been dismissed by Italy and edged a German team that didn't even qualify. They'll face stiff competition from Croatia, among others, including a Chinese squad that boasts 4 players over 6' 11".

The problem is that international play emphasizes zone defense and outside shooting. Dribbling and penetrating, the NBA players' forte, won't cut it. What they need is a team comprised of 12 of those lone skinny white guys NBA teams put on the floor in the waning moments. The one who never misses free throws and can nail the 3 pointer with icewater in his veins.

That and Kobe, arguably the best all around player in the world. But of course he couldn't commit to play for his country because he was scheduled to be on trial on rape charges. A trial that has since been postponed (i.e. cancelled) due to technical difficulties posed by the fact that the alleged victim is trying to empty Kobe's bank account rather than seeking justice.

This, coupled with the fact that the judge agreed to allow defense lawyers wide latitude in presenting evidence of her sexual activity immediately before and after encounter with Kobe, effectively crippled the criminal case against him. And you can bet the civil case will be swept under the rug as well. a six figure wire transfer is taking place as we speak. Thus one might conclude that no rape took place.

It goes without saying that rape is heinous. This is particularly true today, when sneaky rapists slip roofies into your drink rather than waste time lurking behind garbage cans as in days of yore. But what about false allegations of rape, as above? Why would anyone do that? You know it is going to be a huge ordeal. My theory is that in those cases, the encounter totally sucked and they are pissed. Probably there was scant foreplay, rough and perfunctory intercourse, no female orgasm and no spooning afterwards. Perhaps Kobe was rude to her, saying, "Alright bitch, I'm done. Now get the F out so I can get some sleep."

Or else maybe he raped her. And if so, I hope he burns in hell like OJ and Scott Peterson if he too walks as all California murderers n' rapists seem to do these days.

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chuck woolery

Summer Vacation

by chuck woolery at 07:29 PM on August 12, 2004

As the new person in my office I am the low man on the totem pole as far as selecting when I get to go on vacation. Accordingly I only get a couple long weekends over the summer, and probably a week or two in the fall. Ah well.

This weekend coming up (fri, sat, sun) is one of my long weekends, and I am going on a little roadtrip with my girlfriend and one of her buddies. Whoo...

We are going to the "International Peace Park", Glacier / Waterton national parks.

The parks straddle the US / Canada Border, with Waterton in Alberta and Glacier in Montana (see map). They offer some amazing scenery, and a amazing high country road through Logan's pass known as the Going to the Sun Road. I've been over the pass a couple times, but I am amazed every time I go over it. The pass is spectacular, although not for those that are afraid of heights. The road has some sections were it seems like you're looking down a thousand feet to the bottom of the cliff your on (although it's probably on a few hundred).

Last year we attempted to go over the pass, but were unable to due to forest fires that closed over 1/2 the road. This year has been more rainy, so the pass is open as of today. Good good.

A trip I'd heartily recommend to anyone, almost as good as the comparable highway in Canada, the Icefields Parkway.

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What can I say?

by anna at 07:53 AM on August 11, 2004

I love my son dearly, like, well, a son. But he does have this unfortunate tendency to make off-the-cuff remarks to which there is no ready rejoinder. Thus they just hang there in the air like a lingering fart. We've talked about it and he is getting better though.

It's like some posts you read. They are brilliant, erudite and all of that. But you can't for the life of you think of anything to add in the comments. I've found this to be the case when I've shared intensely personal stuff from my past. And that's why I rarely do that anymore.

The local paper once ran a contest wherein readers sent in conversation-ending, rejoinder-less, room-clearing remarks such as those of my son's. I believe the winner was: "Well, I've got to go feed my hostages."

Once, after some automotive intimacy, a girl said to me: "That tasted terrible." I mean, what can you say to that? Let's here some of these from your archives. Don't be shy. It can't be worse than that.

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Hell hath no fury like a lord of the manor scorned by a vassal

by northstar at 06:13 AM on August 10, 2004

Dolphins may try to recoup money from Williams

From our cushy seats, it's easy to rip NFL players

The Dolphins want payback from Ricky Williams. Literally.

An angry Wayne Huizenga will try to recoup more than $5 million paid in incentive money to the retired Williams over the last two years, a source close to the Dolphins owner told the Miami Herald on Saturday.

''Wayne is incredibly [angry] about what Ricky did,'' the source told the newspaper. "He has his lawyers together, and he's going after all the money the team paid Ricky. He wants to make sure this never happens again."

The opening kickoff of another NFL season is a bit more than a month away, but the exhibition season began last night with a sloppy Hall of Fame game from Canton, Ohio. What we'll see on the field is merely the tip of the iceberg. What we won't see is the ugly reality that is life in the National Football League.

Those of us who are football fans often lose sight of the fact, if we recognize it at all, that the sport of football can be a brutal, exploitative, and severely compassion-starved bottom-line-oriented business. In a line of work where the average player's career is less than four years long, we who sit in the stands or watch on television tend to be blissfully and willfully ignorant of what a player endures in order to earn NFL money. It ain't pretty....

cont'd »

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She was sucking cock backstage at the armory in order to get a pass to see some big rock group for free

by anna at 06:52 PM on August 09, 2004

It's election season and you know what than means: endless blather about "safer streets" and "first responders." I'm sorry but to me 100,000 more cops just means more speed traps, drunk driving checkpoints and a run on donuts at the Dunkin' Donuts. And oh sure in DC and NYC they make it out like terrorists are poised to strike at any moment. But what the hell can I do about that?

I think a much more laudable goal would be a return to civility, maybe even some chivalry. We need less bitterly divisive figures like Bill O'Reilly, Michael Moore, George W Bush, Rush Limbaugh, Susan Sarandon, Madonna, KKK spokesman Daniel Carver, Jesse Jackson, Babs Streisand, Osama bin Laden, Al Franken and Doctor Laura. What do all these people have in common? Not much, except they're all part of my regrettable generation.

You hear much talk these days about a coming "clash of civilizations" between the modern, hedonistic West and the pious, backwards mullahs and emirs of Islam. And I don't doubt it. But if you think about it, what is needed (again) is more civility and tolerance, not strident, self-serving and ultimately pointless prattling from pundits and preachers. On both sides of the ideological fence we need to face the fact that we really can't co-exist unless we agree to disagree and tolerate one another's views.

Youth are the key. Under the most repressive Muslim dictatorships in the world (Iran,) one of the youngest demographics in the world have basically started thumbing their noses at the holier-than-thou shitheads who run the show there. They wear sexy burqas, drink and dig Western culture. Controversial movies are banned but everyone already has a bootleg copy they've downloaded. It can happen other places as well. We don't have to accept this shit. And if we do, we're all toast.

So what's it gonna be, boy? The future world (if there is one) will be shaped by you whippersnappers, not us old fogies. Before long all those folks listed above will be dead and gone. Will it be a world populated by such cynical, depraved, overbearing, opinionated zealots, malcontents and ideologues? Or will we see altruistic, tolerant, flexible, circumspect secularists coming to the fore? In other words, can we extract what is useful from the world's great religions and throw out the outdated dogma, preachiness, prejudice and so forth?

It's all up to you. Perhaps John Mellencamp said it best: "A million young poets, screaming out their words. Maybe someday those words will be heard. By future generations, down the highways that we built. Maybe they'll have a better understanding. Maybe they'll have a better understanding. Let's hope they have a better understanding."

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Equal Housing, Smequal Housing

by adam at 08:47 PM on August 08, 2004

I have to move. Again. The house where I've been living since May is clearing out at the end of the month, so I've got to find an apartment, house, hut, shack, or teepee to call home while I hunt around for an apartment to buy. I've had my eye on Flushing, in Queens, for a while. It's convenient to Long Island, where I work, convenient to Manhattan, where I play, and there are 24-hour Chinese restaurants. What more could a guy want?

So the plan is to live in Flushing in a share for a couple of months to make sure that I'd like living there, but there's one problem. When I look for apartments to share in Flushing on Craigslist, I keep finding things like this:

$560-Large Masterbedroom available, utilites included:call 718-888-XXXX ask Jen

New hardwood floors, 2 windows in very nice view and very nice quiet neighborhood. Located in Northern Blvd and 147th Street.Everything is nearby including deli, laundromat is inside building, pharmacy, and restaurants. Share of kitchen, dining area and bathroom only with one professional and friendly man.

Bus station is just in front of the building, (Q13, Q28), 10mins to #7 train, 25 minutes by Express #7 Train to Mid-town Manhatten.

Seeking one quite and friendly person (Asian only). Rent is $560, TV cable is available, phone line is available, High speed internet cable is available, utilities included. One month rental and 1.5 month deposit.

Did we catch the important part of that ad? I'm not terribly tolerant of this kind of thing even in personals ads, though I can understand where it might come from there. But to announce to the world that you only want to live with people of one race is, by any reasonable definition, racism. And for those who are going to stand up and say, "But some people are only comfortable living with people of their own race!" I say, yes, that's called pre-judgement, which is basically what racism is, but thanks anyway for proving my point.

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Greetings from Paradise

by northstar at 08:46 PM on August 07, 2004

Gee, it only rained a little bit in Miami this morning...what a shock. Silly me; here I'd thought I was coming to some sort of tropical paradise- you know, sun, palm trees, warm tropical breezes. Yeah, right. Apparently, I've arrived in the middle of monsoon season, and I'm developing an unnatural urge to build an Ark and begin collecting two of everything.

The people in the office I'm working out of seem to think I'm solely responsible for the crummy weather (You know, it WAS sunny before you got here....). I don't know if that's true or not, but the end result is the same. I'm beginning to understand why mildew is the state flower.

cont'd »

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She got the Mercedes bends

by anna at 06:29 PM on August 06, 2004

I'm not one for idle chitchat. I relish intense philosophical debate, which is why I dig Chris, MG, Linz and Mr. Blank so much. I leap headlong into them every chance I get. In fact, I believe we got pretty deep the night Ezy and his lady friend came a-calling at the House of Anna.

It happened again the other day. I'd called a guy to discuss payment of a hospital bill and some travel expenses he'd incurred in Singapore. Seems he'd contracted some vile lung disease in Indonesia. He took one look at the local hospital with patients dying in squalor on the floor and hopped the first flight to Singapore ("Disneyland with the death penalty.") I should note that he had just a hint of a Brit accent, like an Englishman who'd spent most of his life overseas.

Me: Dude, what were you doing over there?
him: We were on an underwater film shoot in a bay. There are 16 islands but all the rest are Moo-slim. The locals hate us and want to kill us. It's naught like the old days when we could film anywhere we bloody well choose.
Me: So you chose this particular island because it was Muslim-free?
Him: Oh no, there are Moo-slims there as well. The island is hoff Moo-slim and hoff Christian with a few Jews and Hindus thrown in for good measure. But everyone treated our crew cordially.
Me: What, no Druids?
Him: Naught to me knowledge.
Me: How'd you get this infection?
Him: Well, there are no septic systems to speak of. The locals just pee along the shore and when it rains everything washes into the water. Must've been (pronounced as in lima) some kind of virus cause antibiotics wouldn't touch it. Wasn't a tall pleasant, I'll tell you.
Me: That's nasty.
Him: I think the reason the natives are so cordial is cause they have jawbs.
Me: Jawbs?
Him: You know, like gainful employment. They all work like 60 hours a week. They don't have time for jihad.
Me: Yeah I guess they're too tired to behead anybody.
Him: Well, naught really. The youths play football at all hours of the night. That and get drunk on homemade berry wine, which isn't hoff bad once you get used to it. There's a brothel that's open...
Me: Or maybe they figure they've got too much to lose to go around on pointless suicide missions.
Him: There may be some element of that. All I know is that they're peaceable and let us go about our business.
Me: Is that so unusual?
Him: Yes it is. In most parts of the world they hate us and want to kill us. It makes for quite the arduous shoot. Savages, they are.
Me: Yeah you mentioned that. But do you mean Americans, Brits or everyone?
Him: They despise all infidels. Well, it's been (lima) nice chatting with you. Now when might I expect my cheque?
Me: It's in the mail. So how was the brothel?
Him: Filthy. Have you ever seen a whore in a burqa?
Me: No. Good day, mate.
Him: I'm naught Australian, you know.
Me: Oh. Then, ta-ta.

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Cry For Philosophy

by adam at 12:56 AM on August 05, 2004

Good jorb Missouri! You've just demonstrated that the this country is filled with people who neither understand nor appreciate the value of the separation of church and state. The news had interviews with people who voted for a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, and most of them boiled down to the same thing: 'I voted for the amendment because I'm a religious Christian, and God's plan for marriage involves only one man and one woman'.

Let's leave aside for the time being that outside of Christendom, polygamy and polyamory were fairly common in this world. Let's forget as well the irony of using faith, which the faithful hold up as proof of their righteousness, to discriminate against and demean one's fellow citizens and deny them equal rights. If you believe that your religion belongs in the law books that apply to both believers and non-believers then you are no better, none at all, than the mullahs in Iran, no better than the Taliban in Afghanistan. If your vote in civil elections is based on religion rather than reason, then you don't believe in America.

This country is not based on Christian values, it is based on the values of reason, on the philosophy of liberal democracy. These are specific to no religion; they are the property of and the promise for the whole world, and by attaching them to one faith we deny their universal value. We demean ourselves by allowing religious bias to control the political process, and we give comfort to those who would call us hypocrites by proving that our belief in equal protection under the law stops at the borders of our own superstition.

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baby maybe you're wrong, but you know it's all right

by mg at 11:55 PM on August 04, 2004

Why the recent sausage party around here? Perhaps it is time to do one of those long forgotten Bad Samaritan casting calls, and this time only look for new writers who have actually vagina's, and are not just pretending like some people who I wont mention by name but you know who you are.

I'd try to be more cleverer, but I'm tired, and have no time (more on that later). So, I'll just end this useless post by saying: "If you are a woman (or girl, (or grrl)), and would like to join the BadSam staff, please drop me an email." And I'll get back to you in like six weeks. No, seriously, I'll try to get back to you sooner. Like, in three weeks.

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by adam at 09:19 PM on August 04, 2004

I've been walking around with a funny feeling in my stomach for the last several days. I thought it might be gas, but now I'm pretty sure that it isn't - it's emotional overload. Between screwing up the already nasty scene with J about as much as it was possible to screw it up on Saturday, normal work-related stress, my roommate not speaking to me for the better part of a month, probing questions about the nature of our friendship from my best and oldest friend, and the check I just wrote as part of my bid on the first piece of property I've ever tried to buy, I'm a mess. I feel like the pot of ramen noodles that is my emotional well-being was put on "HI" on the stove, and the cook walked away to do their laundry, leaving the pot to boil over.

So I've been walking around on edge all week. Checking my email causes my eye to twitch, for fear of anything that could pass for bad news. Every time someone at work calls my name, my immediate response is, "I didn't do it!" I walk around making eye contact with random strangers, hoping that they say something so I can unleash 180 pounds of Hebrew fury upon them. I *can't fight* and I'm trying to pick them! My co-worker's husband, a corporate trainer, came into the office and mentioned team-building exercises, and I actually said, "Teams are for people who can't get anything done on their own." I've only been working for six weeks, but I think I need a vacation. Any suggestions for good weekend Escapes from New York (tm)? (anyone who mentions Hawaii is in BIG trouble)

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More lessons from our intrepid traveller

by northstar at 06:14 PM on August 04, 2004

More random observations about life in Miami:

All things considered, this is a fascinating place. I think I'm going to like it here.

And the fun is just beginning....

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You can take all the tea in China, drop it straight into the deep blue sea

by anna at 12:42 PM on August 04, 2004

We immerse ourselves in work or school. We meet obligations. We amass an amalgam of things. We maintain those things as best we can. We chase tail. When at last we land that special someone, we don't take advantage of the convenient live-in situation as often as we should.

We're sorely dissapointed when all those things that were supposed to make life more convenient only serve to complicate matters further. And yet amazingly, seldom do we give due consideration to cutting it all loose to pursue some whimsical dream, like this chick did.

It's also amazing that these stuffy stores, which won't even let my wife train her pit bulls in there, would allow this lady to construct her sculptures. My thought is that they're probably too taken aback to stop her. Usually if you just act confident that what you're doing is acceptable, no one will try to mess with you.

Given that she plans to erect her paver-sculptures in all 50 states, it's likely you might encounter one while you trudge into Lowe's intent on finding the right color of grout. Or better yet, you might behold a work in progress.

So if you could, and if you think about it you could, what manner of whimsy would you pursue?

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You never get a second chance to make a first impression

by northstar at 07:26 AM on August 03, 2004

I'm in Miami for a month-long business trip. It's the first time I've been here, so I'm trying to get used to things as quickly as possible. It's going to be an interesting month.

OK, so I've been in South Florida all of 16 hours. That's plenty of time to draw some quick conclusions (which, once I've been here awhile, will probably be proved horribly wrong):

Job One is finding my way around. Thankfully, my apartment is only 3 miles from the office I'm working out of. I think I'm going to find this a fascinating place, (it makes me wish I'd paid closer attention in Spanish class) and I can hardly wait to check out the Venezuelan restaurant down the street.

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Dear Nick

by adam at 09:52 PM on August 02, 2004

I think I speak for many, many men when I tell Nick Cage: turn back dude, it's not worth it. But if you must persist in this fool's errand, here are some pointers
/not really

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Once upon a midnight dreary I woke with something in my head

by anna at 01:07 PM on August 01, 2004

I have lusted in my heart. -Jimmy Carter to Playboy magazine

In an ideal world you'd never see your former sex partners again after the fling is over. But of course, the more of them there are the more likely it is you will chance to meet them as you make your daily rounds. They will be fully clothed, perhaps extending their hand for a polite shake, or offering a perfunctory hug or even that Euro kissy-kiss thing they do on each cheek.

You will picture them in the most compromising if not depraved position you ever saw them in. You'll hear not their greeting or what they've been up to lately. They say, "Work has been going great." You hear: "Oh, oh that feels so great. Don't stop." They're wearing a tasteful dress suit. You see them in only a skimpy thong or a sweaty wife-beater T-shirt. You're lucky you're not Jim Carrey in Liar, Liar.

It's a fact of life. While you can and should exert control over what you say and do, there's no controlling your libinous mind. Just ask Carter. Or Carrey's character. Who could forget that scene in the elevator with the buxom neighbor?

These sensual memories of bygone trysts are forever embedded in your mind. Well, maybe not forever. I can't remember any details of the vast majority of encounters I had in my single days. Just a few unusual situations pop into my mind from time to time. As a happily married man, I squelch those thoughts immediately. But I can't deny that they've occured any more than the god-fearing Carter could.

I have one coworker whom I dated many, many years ago. Every so often we pass in the hall and say hi. Up pops this most unwelcome image in my head. It isn't a good one. In fact it's rather embarrassing. I wonder if this happens to her too.

Another time I met an old GF at a gathering with her parents. It doesn't get much worse than that.

Or maybe it does. Growing up my parents ran a restaurant where most of the locals would hold their wedding receptions. I'd sit on this veranda overlooking the reception hall. Sometimes I'd wander downstairs and mingle with the guests. If I chatted up someone from the bride's side, I would say I knew the groom and vice versa. I would know their respective names from my mom's records. I'd enjoy champagne toasts, Swedish meat balls and shrimp cocktail. Sometimes I'd enjoy more. You know how it can be at wedding receptions. (Think page 27 of The Godfather.)

One time the bride turned out to be someone I'd dated years before. She was a free spirit, what used to be called a real firecracker. Her favorite song was She Wants a Pearl Necklace by ZZ Topp. She explained what it meant to me. At her wedding she sported a pearl necklace. The First Dance was to that very song.

I went to duck out of there post haste, but she spotted me first. Her and the new hubby come over and she introduces him. He's like, an investment banker or something. It is simply awful. I'm trying to act all suave and nonchalant but there's this image that won't go away.

Am I alone in this?

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