Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A Brief Anecdote

A Scottish gentleman was heard to hold forth in a public establishment.

"D'ye see that fence over there?" asked the man, pointing out the window. "I built that fence with my own two hands. I cut the wood and set each post. And do they call me Angus the Fence Setter? Nae, they dinnae!"

He took a large pull at his pint and pointed to a nearby barn outside.

"An' d'ye see that barn over there? I helped raise that barn. I pulled my weight and more to raise it upright, facing the heavens. And do they call me Angus the Barn Builder? Nae!"

Another libation. He warmed to his topic.

"You see that road out there?" He pointed with his crook out the door. "I built that road, each mile of it, by the sovereign sweat of my ain brow. And do they call me Angus the Road Paver? They dae no'!"

A deep and bitter draft made its way down his gullet.

"But you go and fuck just ONE goat..."

Saturday, February 25, 2006

A Chatechism

What metaphoric verb phrase, the employment of which serves to remind the attentive reader of the inevitable occurrence of its own opposite, can, according to the Sunday Washington Post Editorial Page, be ascribed to the wave of sectarian violence that seemed to push Iraq to the brink of a civil war this week, at least for now?

It has ebbed.

Thank you. If the relative peace holds, how might one characterize the determination demonstrated by political and religious leaders to prevent communal bloodshed?

It is encouraging.

What dual and conflicting emotions were experienced by US Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, in such sufficiency that he was constrained to aver that the crisis had created "a moment of opportunity" for Iraq?

He was encouraged -- or desperate.

In which direction must the Iraqi Interior Ministry and its death squads be cleaned if US funding for Iraqi police and security forces is not to be withdrawn?


And in what mythological punitive locale does the likelihood of this occurring invite the comparison of a snowball's chance?


Given the thesis that the US Ambassador is threatening the Iraqi Government with nonsupport and financial penury should they fail to purge the Interior Ministry of thugs and brigands, what word best provides the direct object of the historico-excrementational assertion, "I done laughed till I nearly shit"?


Does some passive-aggressive playground sneer express the Iraqi government's sole choice of a response to such a comically empty threat?

What are you, gonna tell on me?

What pronoun might be accurately employed to stand for the subject of the verb-phrase "are so fucked"?


Your pessimism does not become you.

Bite me.

Oh, no: Bite me.

(Apologies to Myles na Gopaleen.)

Friday, February 24, 2006

Self-Portrait: The Bastard on a Burning Deck



Laden with peanut butter and jam,
The salad fork illuminates
The pearly teeth of Our Subject,
The thin lips and deepset eyes set in a rictus of nearly Papal cruelty.

Haughty as a Spanish Don
An even better dresser,
Riches even shameful on
A crooked tax assessor

Fee, fi, fo, fum,
For once the blood of Englishmen
Curdles away like the queen of the May
At his Janus-faced approach.

Who among us, pray, enacts a Walking Palindrome?

A man, a plan, a canal, a couple of bucks for a trusted old pal, a pillowcase stuffed with gravel, a calling card: Have Horse, Will Travel, a saw, a paw, a claw, a mute and blinded black jackdaw, a monkey wrench, Dame Judy Dench, a cobbler's bench, a vaguely louche and morbid stench, a man, a plan, a canal, a man, a canal, a man, a plan, a man, a canal, a plan, a completely different man, a barrelhoop, a phlegmy cough, a stone, a bone, a clone, a groan, something muttered on the phone, a bike, a spike, a pike, a dike, the end of another Thousand-Year Reich, a log, a bog, a long hard slog, a tough-acting enzyme to loosen that clog:


Thursday, February 23, 2006

Neddie Jingo Would Like to Ask...

Just who the hell do you think you are?

Answer in Comments, please.

(How much Nothin' do I got, huh? Huh? The very Stone from which no Blood can be wrung. Woof.)

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Scott Hamilton Understands

Oooooh, look, I can spin in really tiny circles, and I can glide backwards while grabbing my leg and sticking it in my ear, and I can gesticulate balletically with my graceful arms while grinning like a gargoyle...

But now comes the kicker...


That Frothy Mix

Jingosphere habitués will (one hopes) remember a post that appeared in these pages back at Thanksgiving of last year, in which Your Humble and Ob't infested, albeit fleetingly, the nesting ground of that most rarefied of avian species, the Eastern American Stinking Oofy -- the bird the local Iroquois used to call "Farts-Through-Silk."

Acolyte Treepeony brings to our attention a piece written by Philly gadfly Will Bunch (reporter for the Philadelphia Daily News who blogs at Attytood) in the American Prospect. Bunch has investigated the private and public finances of Pennsylvania junior senator Rick Santorum, finding financial shenanigans that suggest that the Senate GOP "might want to reconsider making him its ethics czar."

Besides the delicious fact that Santorum's name will live on in ways he probably doesn't relish, the babyfaced little cocksucker meant squadoosh to me personally other than as simply yet another loathesome professional hypocrite, one of hundreds to choose from.

But now I find we're neighbors.

The supermarket, hardware store, big-box retailer and Starbucks from which Rick "Sometimes the Product of Anal Sex" Santorum charges his purchases back to his very own Political Action Committee are the very same places from which I charge my purchases back to my very own personal Visa card.

And yes, Santorum lives in Plutocrat Downs.

Actually, we have to be completely accurate. The places I photographed for that post last fall were on the north side of Route 7 west of Leesburg. Santorum's subdivision is Shenstone, on the south side, where the houses, while still hilariously grandiose and out of scale, are not quite as exuberantly over-the-top. To put it another way, a United States Senator, even one mired up to his bald, wizened little scrotum in the K Street Project, has to live on the wrong side of the tracks. The ones running him: They live on Bold Venture Drive.

Here's Santorum's house. Please note that this photograph is linked to from Bunch's blog. I didn't take it. I'm happy to cop to a whole lot of sins, but stalking a United States Senator -- that I won't go down for.

I run into the pious little polesmoker at Costco, all bets are off.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Truth is Beauty, Beauty Truth

So Wonder Woman and I got into it over a bucketload of General Tso's Chicken this afternoon at the Sharpenin' Mall. I hope the General don't mind. Evvybody always eatin his chicken. A fella could get nervous.

No, we were there waitin for the Sears boys to call sayin they'd put a new battery into the Nissan Smashfinder. They said they could do it for a few clackers, and we took em up on it. We attackted the General meantime.

She, my Lovely Paintress Better Half, looked out over the crowd of pluguglies in the Food Court while she chewed some chickengristle. She waxed Christian, who didn't cavil.

"The most beautiful faces here are the ugliest. Look at that woman over there [late fifties, jaw collapsed, never had a chin, bugeyes, nasty sweater]. What would Lucian Freud have made of her? Isn't she Truly Beautiful?"

I remonstratified, setting forth the Libertarian argyment, which have always stood me in goot stood. "Lucian Freud?" I refarted, "Who the sharkin' pluck ever gave him any money? I'm tellin you now, here's de troof, don't ye know, here's de corksoakin troof:

"That thing is beautiful that you want to give lots of money to."

Wondie and me had a big larff over it, an then we warrant our semperate ways. She and Betty stalked off for some cotton apparel; Freddie and I went for haircuts. The both of us had gotten a mite Hirsute.

At Bubbles Haircuttifyin Salon, we made an inconvenient display. The confused menials dithered until the strongest among them dithered meaningfully, "I think we can take a couple of walk-ins, but we'll see who's free."

Who was free was simply the most astonishingly deliciously toothsome blonde pixie gamine to be observed in this or any other lifetime, all fishnet-sweater-over-bare-shoulder and nine-inch tattooed hips. She just popped into the equasion and chirped, "I can take you now!"

Any heathero-sexual human male woulda did something like this:

Completely unable to trust myself to behave like a genitalman, I shunted the responsibility off to my twelve-year-old. You go first, son, you'll thank me later...

When the haircuts were done....

I tipped her $600.

I was right all along.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Going Straight to Hell

Sometimes the cheap and sadistic urge to bullshit the Completely Innocent becomes difficult to resist.

This afternoon a colleague at work had an Autocomplete brainfart, and a work-related email intended for someone named Anna in our office ended up in the Inbox of a completely different Anna who works for the same company but a continent away. The email was a request that "our" Anna, a graphic designer, include a particular design specification in a technical document we were collectively putting together. I was cc'd on the email, and noticed the error and forwarded the request to the proper Anna.

Some hours later, a Reply All came from the "wrong" Anna, to the effect that she didn't understand why she was receiving this request, that she was a video editor on the West Coast, and to please remove her from the distribution list.

It's Friday before a long weekend, and it's been a hellish week. I have written 100 pages of extremely infra dig technical documentation in the last two days -- no exaggeration -- and it's been feeling rather sweatshoppy of late, so it suddenly became extremely important to go Full-Metal Surreal on an Innocent Bystander:

"Quit tryin' ta dodge work! [I Replied All]

"If you don't add the spec to the document as requested, we're gonna shoot this puppy!

"See it? This puppy right here!"

I'm thinking the next move is to send The Wrong Anna a note from Scamp.the.adorable.puppy@gmail.com, and beg her to please add the spec to the document, because it's scary having these angry people waving guns at you. Perhaps in a quiet moment next week.


Many years ago, when Freddie was a young 'un, his favowittest book inna whole wi' worl' was a little thing about pirates. We read that goddamned book so many times together that we both could recite it in our sleep -- and frequently did, Wonder Woman informs me.

One page of the book listed The Pirate's Rules, all laid out in numerical order. Complete bullshit, of course, but very impressive to the four-year-old mind. Things like "1. One eighth part of all Booty is reserved for the Captain; the rest is shared equally by the Crew"; or "7. Any open flames below decks shall earn a man twelve stripes with the cat, yarrrr."

I got the tiniest bit fed up with The Pirate's Rules fairly early on in the game, and began to, as they say, Play with the Form. Taking inspiration from The Philosophy Department of the University of New South Wales, I began to regularly omit Rule Four from the list, saying instead, "Rule Four: There is no Rule Four, me hearties!"

All very innocent fun, of course, until one day I overheard a conversation coming from the back seat as I was ferrying a gaggle of Cub Scouts somewhere: "Did you know that pirates didn't believe in the number four?" "Get outta here!" "No, really! They wouldn't have Rule Four!"



Late Nineties. My annoyance with the lame pickups in my Jap-Strat reaches terminal velocity, and I gift myself a set of hot new Fender Vintage Noiseless replacements. Of course I have to install them myself, because that's how I am, and I get wiring diagrams off the Net and teach myself how to solder.

I have a rapt audience as I do this. What seven-year-old boy doesn't love to watch something like soldering? So I'm talking him through the whole process, tinning the iron, here's how an electric circuit works, careful that's hot, yadda yadda.

Then the most awful pun occurs to me.

"You know, Freddie, you have to be really extra-careful while you're doing this stuff. And keep insect spray around."

"Yeah, Dad? Why?"

"Because there are these little bugs that can get into the solder and ruin your job. They like to hide in electronic equipment, and they are the only creatures on earth that can live solely on molten lead. Know what they're called?"

"No, what, Dad?"

"Solder mites. Watch out for 'em, son."

Months later. Months and months later. Wonder Woman accosts me:

"What the hell have you been telling our son?"

"Why, what do you mean?"

"Little bugs called sodomites that live in the radio?"

Oh, yeah, I'm headed for the Hot Place. They're preparing a nice room for me.

Hey: Once I heard about a family that taught their kid to count, but deliberately left out the number seven. I could have done that, you know. I didn't.

Thursday, February 16, 2006


Taking a Winter Olympic Moment, here, tearing myself away from the bedheaded Canadian mimbo dressed up like a clove-studded apple curvetting about impersonating the Afternoon of a Faun. Given the uncustomary luxury of an idle moment I just popped into the Jingo Statcounter Account (because it's the sort of thing one does once in a while).

Turns out a Certain Someone who shall remain nameless (mostly due to the ineluctible truth that I have no idea of the person's name) arrived at the Friendly Confines of the Jingosphere through the sort of Google search that would turn a more jealous man than I a delicate shade of Kelly, Lincoln, or perhaps Bowling Green:

Why is everyone in the wine industry a pompous asshole?

Indeed. To such a Solomonic query one has no immediate, predigested answer -- but it gives me a quiet pride to note that on this bejeweled night By Neddie Jingo! is the fifth item on the list returned by Google.

This means, children, that if your personal list of Eternal Questions encompasses the pompous assholaciousness, the bombastic buttholery, rhetorical ringpieceitude, self-important starfishiness or imperious itchy-brown-eyedness of the world's purveyors of Bacchus' pride, then of the universe's experts I am numbered among the Top Five.

I am suffused with pride.

Now hush, children. They're restarting that engrossing event wherein six lithe mushroom-headed young men skate in single file, in perfect lockstep, each attempting to insert his face into the fundament of the fellow ahead. I don't know how one wins at this event, but I really don't want to think about the Sweet Taste of Victory.

I'm reminded of this halcyon album cover...

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

What's in a Word?

I keep reading and hearing that the Vice President "sprayed" birdshot at (what is the proper preposition there? on? all over? into?) Harry Whittington. Here's a representative sample, Google search for "Cheney" and "sprayed" and "shotgun."

Awfully prissy, isn't it, this spraying business. Dainty. Like a .28-gauge shotgun loaded with birdshot is really not much more formidable than that lovely adjustable-head gardener's wand I bought on special at Lowe's last spring -- twelve ever-so-gentle sprinkle patterns, from Mist to Soak to Fan to Shower. I mean, really, if you're going to be sprayed with anything besides water or champagne or your lover's parting gift (or, in optimal circumstances, all three) why, you could do no better than a little schvitzing spritzing [thank you Master Barber; nothing is more goyische than a goy misusing Yiddish, is there!] from a fine handmade Italian shooting-iron in the hands of a Dedicated Public Servant.

Here's a video of an experienced skeet- and trap-shooter as he administers a little spraying of buckshot at a paper target. Savor, especially, his dry-as-dust analysis of the perfect distribution of pellets in the target (click image to play):

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

To Wonder Woman, Valentine's Day, 2006

In gentleness and courtly love
You're earthly heaven to be housed with
In the opposite of courtly love
You're hellish earthy to be aroused with.

Monday, February 13, 2006

He Waves It Around a Bit

(Cross-posted at Sisyphus Shrugged.)

Lindsey Kildow wipes out.

I am a very, very good skier. I'll kick your ass.

I skiied competitively in high school, once whupped the sorry posterior of a future Olympian in the Giant Slalom. Torneo Nacional para la Juventud, representing El Colegio Nido de Aguilas, La Parva, 1975. You could look it up (assuming the records of the Club Nacional del Esquí de Chile are online, and that the little rich-boy turd didn't get his fascist daddy to erase the Permanent Record.)

But precisely because I'm a damned fine skier, it's an agony of twitching legs, shallow breath and unconscious body english watching those utterly psychotic downhillers point their sticks straight down and just ride 'em. There was an establishing shot done from a helicopter during yesterday's Downhill coverage that just scared the bejeebers out of me. The copter followed the route of the race from the finish line up, up, up the sheer side of this mountain, past the treeline, and all the way to just below the peak, where the warming huts were. And with every vertical foot that the copter traced, my heart beat harder and harder.

Skiing is controlled falling. Slightly modified skydiving. Not much more to it than that. Those wiggly things that you do with your hips, all that edging and carving turns and whatnot, is all geared to governing your speed. Absolutely the first, last and onliest rule of skiing is stay in control. Ignore that, and you become a danger to yourself and others.

I think we can all, skiers and snowbunnies, relate to that Golden Rule, nicht wahr?

So when I watch those maniacs come charging out of the starting hut and fling themselves straight down the mountain, reaching murderous speeds of 80 MPH in the first couple hundred yards, essentially in nothing less than free-fall -- that's a sobering sight, man. I know what happens to your thighs when you hit a sudden upslope at even a recreational 25 MPH: Try to conceive how much power you need in your legs to keep up that rate of speed, that rigid control, for two, two-and-a-half, three desperate minutes! I've been there, broken that Golden Rule enough times to know what goes through your head when you find yourself, calves burning and lungs pumping rarefied air, needing something more out of your legs to regain CONTROL or it's Sonny Bono Time, off to visit Ulrike Maier in the Choir Invisible....

The top of Kandahar Banchetta was like a wall, it was so steep.


I hope Lindsey Kildow is OK.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Coming Conflagration

As the first few downy flakes of the END OF THE EAST COAST of the UNITED STATES AS WE KNOW IT!!!!!! fall friskily on the lawn, I post a last missive. The Internet has this tendency to go hooties-up when we get a few inches, and so when I don't post you'll know it's me.

Now I'm gonna take the truck out to the Berlin Pike and abandon it. It's what you do.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Where Am Us, Anyway?

I'm breast-glogging at Sisyphus Shrugged while Julia struggles mightily with the world's most evil software. I have posted perhaps the silliest thing I have ever written in my natural-born life.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

One Is Flattered

One would be evincing just unbelievably crass and self-important behavior if one were to point out that Joe Bageant, in one of his finest stemwinders yet, on the subject of Middle-Class Alienation, which inspires one to dig out a Herbert Marcuse essay one hasn't revisited since one's thick-sweatered, beardy Che Guevara period and ponder why one doesn't suspend the nearest handy plutocrat from a lamppost by his scrotum...

..quotes one (see graf four).

So one won't. One will resist.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Me and Ricky Dawkins

Biomorphs created using Richard Dawkins' Blind Watchmaker program

Once decades ago I found myself cornered at a dinner party by an elderly Scotsman who had recently undergone a religious conversion. He was particularly interested to hear that I, at the time an undergraduate, was a student of Comparative Religion, and buttonholed me rather relentlessly on the subject. He elicited from me an admission that I was myself not religious, but had taken up the topic to try to understand better why such patently self-delusional thinking was so prevalent throughout human history. Then he hurled his finest rhetorical lightning-bolt at me: "I was once like you! Yes I was! But that all changed when I realized: I was living in a Gawwwwdless Univairrrrse!"

Why, imagine that, I think I mumbled. I did manage to extricate myself from the inquisition soon after -- citing, I think, the sudden onset of a kidney stone or perhaps a collapsed lung, memory isn't clear -- but the vivid image still lingers of the triumph in the man's eyes as he watched, expectantly, for his Idiot Logic take effect, for me to fall writhing and speaking in tongues, overcome by remorse at how wrong I'd thitherto been. But alas, the tortured logic fell on deaf ears. That's some dramatic Christly tautology there, Angus, and I bet it sings like a contralto down at the parsonage, but me and Ricky Dawkins, we ain't buying.

It's a bit difficult, watching the world explode into madness, as Monotheists of all stripes bums-rush us headlong into some kind of hideous epoch-defining confrontation over conflicting ideas about an invisible all-powerful being whose existence I find about as credible as that of Santa Claus. It's simply blindingly obvious to me that the Flock are being manipulated into beliefs and attitudes that are diametrically opposed to their own best interests by malign puppeteers who exploit their irrationality and goad them into madness.

This Sunday's WashPost had a long piece on religion and science, well worth the read. In the first part of the piece, one Catherine Crocker, a profoundly silly woman, walks a gullible biology class at NoVa Community College through some of the most transparently Bad Science you're likely to read this or any other year. (Helmut at Phronesisaical has the Philosopher's Smackdown -- off you go! And P.Z. Myers Explains It All For You.

The second half of the piece, intended to provide, one supposes, the thumbsucking "balance" that such things require so as not to inflame the easily inflamed, is a portrait of biologist Richard Dawkins. I've banged on about this before, and others have said it as well: in a Breughel landscape of insanity, bad faith, desperately knotted thinking and crazed cupidity, Dawkins shines out of the darkness like a Bodhisattva, a pillar of mental health in a vortex of madness.

You can read the article in its entirety over at the Post, but here's one extract that I found particularly noteworthy. The Problem of Evil ("If God is all-powerful, why does He permit evil?") is often posed to Sunday School classes, and the answers, to those of of us not in the Monotheist Camp, are pretty hilariously circular, making old Gawdless-Univairse-boy look like David Hume.

So what if you simply remove Deity from the question? Doesn't the following simply make more sense?
"The sheer amount of suffering in the world that is the direct result of natural selection is beyond contemplation," Dawkins told me. He recently published a collection of essays called A Devil's Chaplain, drawing on a phrase Darwin employed to describe the indifferent cruelty of nature, where wasps paralyze caterpillars segment by segment so their larvae may feed on living meat: "What a book a Devil's Chaplain might write on the clumsy, wasteful, blundering, low and horridly cruel works of nature." But in response to his wife's suggestion that Frankenstein-like selfish genes have created living monsters, Dawkins believes that, alone on Earth, human beings can rebel against the mechanistic indifference of nature. Understanding the pitiless ways of natural selection is precisely what can make humans moral, Dawkins said. It is human agency, human rationality and human law that can create a world more compassionate than nature, not a religious view that falsely sees the universe as fundamentally good and benevolent.
So go. Go burn an embassy, go torture a child with threats of Hellfire, go tell gay people they're subhuman, go make sex a horrible, guilty act, go torture logic with your Gawdless Univairses. Me and Ricky Dawkins, we're going to build a decent world with the materials at hand and not pixie dust.

Stand it Like a Man, But Give Some Back

After the Super Bowel last night, I hopped over to HBO to catch the repeat of an episode of Deadwood, Season 2 -- "E. B. Was Left Out," was the title of the ep. Cy Tolliver sends footpads to smash up the office of the town's newspaperman, A. W. Merrick. Al Swearengen comes in to find a morose Merrick sitting amid the wreckage. He offers some rough-edged advice.

Wish I could counsel my friends with this much style.

Al: Why ain't you up and running again?

Merrick: I'm in despair. The physical damage is repairable, but the psychic wound may be permanent.

Al: You ever been beaten, Merrick?

Merrick: Once, when I thought I had the smallpox, Doc Cochrane slapped me in the face...

Al: (Slaps Merrick in the face.)

Merrick: Stop it, Al!

Al: Are you dead?

Merrick: Well, I'm in pain, but no, I'm obviously not dead.

Al: And obviously you didn't fuckin' die when the doc slapped you.

Merrick: No.

Al: So including last night that's three fuckin' damage incidents that didn't kill you. Pain and damage don't end the world, or despair, or fuckin' beatin's. The world ends when you're dead. Until then, you've got more punishment in store. Stand it like a man, but give some back.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super Bowl -- XL-ent!

Jesus what a horrible pun. Perhaps the worst I've ever perpetrated. Gosh, I hope the NFL doesn't come after me for using that Copyrighted Phrase.

A half-hour before kickoff, a few preliminaries while the fajitas blacken on the broiler. (I use the Chi-Chi's Fajitas for Two recipe from my favorite guilty pleasure, the Top Secret Recipes book.)

1) Steelers 27, Seahawks 24. Tomorrow's hed: "Twelfth Man wins it for Pittsburgh!" The Detroit crowd is estimated 90% Steelers fans, 5% Seahawks, 5% Abramoff clients on a last toot.

2) This year's Mortal Lock: Al Michaels will irritate the living poopie out of me.

3) This year's Wild Hair Prediction: During the Stones' set, a Hell's Angel, hired for security duty, will stab somebody on the field. Mick Jagger will implore the crowd, "Brothers and sisters! Please! Let's keep it together!" Together will fail to be kept by the assembled brothers and sisters. So much for the Woodstock Notion.

More later.
6:14: Best National Anthem Ever: Aaron Neville, Aretha Franklin and DOCTOR JOHN!!! The Night Tripper! Am reminded of a great headline in The Onion: Black Gospel Choir Makes Area Man Wish He Believed in All That God Shit.

7:15: Finished eating. 12:03 second quarter. I'm thinking Seattle Wants It More.

7:17: Sweet gadget play by Pittsburgh. god DAMN, this could change the actual fukkin' momentum! Or so John Madden ponitificates. Tool.

7:20: Intercepion Seattle. They Want It More, I'm telling you.

BTW: Rare Vos, Belgian-style amber, top-fermented, bottle-conditioned, sealed with cork. Out of Cooperstown, NY, slightly ironically. Tasty, tasty, tasty. Mmmm-MM!

You gotta go for the first down, Mike.

7:31: Pittsburgh's moving. Sweet shovel pass by Roethlisberger. Pass is dropped in the end zone by a person who will have nightmares about it for the rest iof his life. I am amused.

What is it about cheerleaders that make me think about sex? It's a mystery.

7:35: SERIOUSLY cool quarterbacking by Roethlisberger, for whose name I'm going to create a Keyboard Macro in a minute. Wow, that breaking-for-the-sideline move, followed by the tiptoe on the line of scrimmage, was one of the coolest moves I've ever seen on a football field.

7:40 Jerome Bettis sacrifices himself to clear the way for the QB Keeper. That ball did not cross the goal line.

7:43 BOOOOOOOOO! Bad call! Bad call!

8:02: Halftime. I'm changing my prediction. I'm liking Seattle, 21-17.

The first ad that caught my eye at all just went by: Promo for Lost, to Robert Palmer's "Addicted to Love.

Here come the Stones.... JESUS CHRIST, WHERE IS MICK TAYLOR????????

They've put in some fucking ringer in there! I think it's that creepazoid from The Faces who used to be in The Birds and the Artwoods -- Ronnie Wood! WHAT HAVE THEY DONE WITH MICK TAYLOR??????????????

I see Mick managed to mumble over the line, "You make a dead man come." Good for him. I'd hate for a dead man to come. That would be scary.

Oh dear god. I just saw Jaggerian ass-crack. RELEASE THE HOUNDS!

Macca was WAY better last year. That's all I'm gonna say on that.

8:32: Ooops! They certainly sprung Parker, didn't they. Dear me. Having done the math, I realize it's impossible for Seattle to score 21. Revised prediction: Seattle 24, Pittsburgh 17.

8:41: Good thing the Seattle kicker missed the field goal. It would have messed up my point spread. Still saying it: Seattle 24, Pittsburgh 17.

Sluggo: You're missing NOTHING on the Groundbreaking Commercials score. NOTHING.

8:49: OK, I might be coming off the Seattle prediction. A bit. Pittsburgh punches it in here, I might be willing to concede the game.

8:52: Ooohhhhhhhh-KAY!!!!!!!!! Watching Herndon run out of gas about the 20 after his interception, reminds me of the importance of not smoking on the sideline. SEATTLE TD: NEW GAME!!!!!!!!!!

8:59: Still looking for an answer re. Why cheerleaders make me think about sex. Weird.

That Lorne Michaels show might be funny.

9:07: Momentum turning Seattle's way. We've seen everything Roethlisberger's got. Punt, Pittsburgh.

9:15: Why am I so in the bag for Seattle? Because they beat the Redskins. It's nice to go through the off-season thinking that the Skins were knocked out of the postseason by the team that won the Super Bowl. Fair?

9:18: Seattle's going to win this game.

9:25: Even after the INT at the 5-yard-line and the ridiculous personal-foul call on Hasselbeck, Seattle's going to win this game. Pittsburgh has it, 3rd and two on the 49.

9:28: ARRRRRRGGGGHHHH! Beaten by the flea-flicker!!!!

9:34: Hasselbeck fumbled. If the zebras say he didn't, it will be highway robbery. OTOH, it's not like Seattle hasn't been getting screwed by zebras the whole game.

9:40: Zebras' call makes no difference. Seattle runs out of gas. Time may well be running out.

9:47: Pittsburgh hits the first down. Emag Revo.

9:49: Archives.

Enjoyed it, gentlemen. Same time, next year?

10:00: This thing ain't over yet, it seems...

10:02: Now it's over. Enjoyed it!

Program Note

Due to overwhelming demand from the Jingosphere, I will be live-blogging the Super Bowel this evening.

Come back at kickoff time, and let's get retarded!

(You with me, Sluggo?)

Friday, February 03, 2006

Boredom, Banished

The thought has recently occurred that one way to stave off the excruciating boredom that is the sad reality of so much of this mortal puff, would be to sidle within earshot of some randomly chosen person at a bus stop or train platform and quietly mutter, in one's best Droopy Dog voice, "Why, you don't smell hardly at all!"

That'd be one way to do it, anyway. Only the fleetest of foot, silent as the ninja and slippery as Roy Cohn, should take up this hobby. The risks are, great -- but ah the rewards!

In something like this spirit, we've decided the old Blogroll needed some light dusting and preventive maintenance, and so we've made some additions that likewise don't smell hardly at all.

I likes me some Redneck Mother. I've always thought that children went very well on a nice bed of lettuce, which will probably end me up in Hell -- and thus do I miraculously recapitulate all three of the things she's raising down Brazos way. She's up for a Koufax for Best Post. After you read the post you'll understand why. Pure heliotrope.

I have a horrendous oversight to correct. I wanted to check out what kind of rollicking fun Bravin and Gad were cooking up at Sadly, No! so I popped over to the Roll and realized to my horror that I'd never actually put them in there! Months ago! I could have sworn! And did! Shit! We'll work on the Spanish lessons later. Unhand that Febreze!

There he sits, atop Joe Bageant's Blogroll, glaring malevolently out at a world not of his own making and spitting bile at it. Arvin Hill, O Best Belovéd, can dish it out. Here he refuses to cut Larry Wilkerson, Colin Powell's careerist right-hand man, any slack for waiting five years before slumming down the Road to Damascus: Fuck You, Larry. Now Apologize. Larry puts off just about the rankest compound of villainous smell that ever offended nostril. Arvin, not at all.

There he sits, roughly about, oh, halfway down Joe Bageant's Blogroll, glaring malevolently out at a world not of his own making and, if anything, venting even more bile than Arvin. King of Zembla's reputation precedes him. That's Reputation, not Redolence. With posts like these, there's a distinct dearth of noxious noisomeness emanating from that quarter.

All right. So long, all you happy people.

Now the Super Bowl's this weekend, right? They're playing Saturday, right? I'll whip up a batch of Tater Skins and Wings for when the gang comes over tomorrow! Go New England!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Laugh, Clown, Laugh!

Administration backs off Bush's vow to reduce Mideast oil imports
By Kevin G. Hall
Knight Ridder Newspapers

WASHINGTON - One day after President Bush vowed to reduce America's dependence on Middle East oil by cutting imports from there 75 percent by 2025, his energy secretary and national economic adviser said Wednesday that the president didn't mean it literally....
Un. Flipping. Believable.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

In Local News

Pross-coasted at The Armorican Treat

We note with pleasure and no small pang of hometown pride that the voters of the 33rd District of Virginia have elected Mark R. Herring (D), a slow-growth advocate for Loudoun County, over the vile and avaricious Mick Staton (R), whose own mother still bears Hummer tire-marks from a storied occasion when she stood between her osculatory offspring and a land-raping developer's proffered bum. One hopes that one sees Portents, Harbingers and Omens in the voters' mood. Could it be that Virginia's voters have fallen out of love with the notion that their right to a bulldozer-free ambiance and a commute of less than three hours' duration ends at precisely that point at which William "Til" Hazel's pustulent checkbook begins?

We can hope.

The very same issue of the Metro Section of the WashPost that carried this gladsome tiding also noted that Virginia has inched a few steps closer to the adoption of the 19th century sea chantey "Shenandoah" as the "interim" state song. Never mind that the song has nothing whatever to do with the Shenandoah River that bathes the ridges a short canoe-ride from where I type this; references to the "wide Missouri" in the lyric are dismissed as so much diversionary piffle. "Shenandoah" it shall be. For now. Until we pick a real state song. Not the one written by sausage maggot magnate Jimmy Dean.

Trouble is, I don't get what all the fuss is about; why replace the existing Virginia State Song? Some years ago, some candy-assed do-gooder suggested that a tune with the lyric

Carry me back to old Virginny,
There's where the cotton and the corn and taters grow,
There's where the birds warble sweet in the springtime,
There's where this old darkey's heart am long'd to go,
There's where I labored so hard for old massa

has some sort of racist implications, but I'm blowed if I can find 'em. Must be a Black Thing, I wouldn't understand.

At any rate, every few years we make rumbling noises about replacing the old bombastic Natural Anthem with something less martial. "This Land Is Your Land" and "America the Beautiful" are frequently bruited about as suitable replacements for Francis Scott Key's convoluted yet bloodthirsty gabfest. I'm all for simplification, but why not simplify all the way? Instead of a lot of contentious hoo-ha about Endless Skyways or Purple Mountains' Majesty, why not eliminate lyrics altogether? Generations of grateful schoolchildren would thank us for freeing them from yet another empty set of words to recite.

And I don't know about you, but I simply adore the idea of a ballpark full of patriotic Americans standing as one body, doffing caps and covering hearts, as the loudspeaker intones, "Ladies and Gentlemen... Please rise for our Natural Anthem..." And what comes out of the public address as we all stand to attention? Thelonious Monk's "Straight, No Chaser." Or maybe Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys' "Osage Stomp." "Take the A Train." "Watermelon in Easter Hay." Oooh! Coltrane's "My Favorite Things"!

I'd have a lot of respect for a country that did that.