"History is Made by Stupid People

Clever People wouldn't even try.
If you want a place in the history books,
Then do something Dumb before you die."--The Arrogant Worms

Leap Day

Hey, look! It's Santa!

The promise of sunny skies & 60 degree temps sent me antiquing again. Too bad it turned out to be 45 & totally overcast. Still, I saw my 1st tree of the year with buds in it. A good sign: Winter didn't really begin here until mid-January, then only lasted 5 weeks, so an early Spring & a gorgeously green Summer lie dead ahead. Live ahead, I mean. No more CT dead grey & brown till October.
Bought a lot, but only spent a lot on 1 thing: a cool clock. As I was paying for it, a couple came up to me & said that I only was able to buy it because they chickened out. I wish they hadn't: it only keeps time until 2 o'clock comes round, then the hands stop moving (except the second hand). But it gives off enough light that I can see a small white cat when I get home at night, & thus are less likely to stomp on her (1 of KK's many nicknames is Underfootnik, as underfoot she always is).
Most of what I got were bargains: 6 60s MAD magazines, most in excellent shape, for a buck each. 1 feature called "Comic Strip Obituaries" had a bit of odd synchronicity. I finally gave a home to the odd Mexican velvet Keep-on-Truckin' Jesus. KK decided to investigate it, & I prly became the only person in world history to say "Don't use the Messiah as a scratching post!" For $6 I picked up a non-functional "ElectriQuiz" game. Junior & Missy put these Q&A cards over the box, then use a rod to make a light come on when they get the question right, hopefully not getting electroQuizcuted in the process. Hmm, but the cards are just paper, the wiring very simple...Yep. Every card matches, say, question hole 6 to answer hole 3, so all you'd have to do is remember what 2 holes matched up on any card. Not that it's all that hard; it's basically multiple choice questions with only 1 multiple: "Which is heavier per cubic inch, gold or iron?" "Why do we have fingernails?" Since we have answers that say "GOLD" & "To protect our fingers," but not "IRON" or "As an emergency food source," it's pretty easy to answer them without actually thinking of the question. No date on the box, but a word association card has such common phrases as "Salt and (pepper)", "Ham and (eggs)," & "A brown derby" (Al Smith)." Excuse me?? (looks it up) He was a failed presidential candidate against Hoover in '28. "Tank commander's helmet (Michael Dukakis)." Most exciting parts of the game: Cover illustration showing a guy who I guess is meant to look smart, but to me looks deeeee-ranged, & KK pulling a string off its price tag & immediately trying to EAT it. Cats can die from eating string--I pulled it out of her mouth by the last inch just as it was going down.
Also bought a Peter Gabriel 8 track for the dead player, & a bunch of cookbooks. 1 is next week's Ob (all praise PhotoShop! It's amazing jpg-compressing made all the lil pics in this New possible, & the upcoming InExOb may have 12 pics), the rest have moments enough that I may pull bits from them to make another Ob. Man, there actually was a time when the latest gee-whiz high tech gadget was the TOASTER. I have a booklet about throwing TOAST PARTIES. All these fancy serving sets with the toaster as the centerpiece, costing up to $23.50 (how many weeks' salary was that in the Depression?). "Guests actually enjoy making their own toast...They simply help themselves to toast & the tasty spreads contained in the beautiful Duncan Glass dishes....Watch how (your teenage kids) bubble over with pride when they show off your swanky Hospitality Tray Set to the crowd." Man, I just gotta throw me a swanky toast party soon! There was also a 1 slice toaster "ideal for smaller families." Show these people a modern bagel-wide 8 slice toaster with crumb-catcher tray & they'd go nutzoid.

The whole tiny town of Putnam was jumping with antique-mad crowds. At 1 point, it hit me that I was the only person there by himself. I sat on the bench by Cargill Falls & thought back 18 months to the 1st time I sat on that bench, when I thought that being alone would be something that would never happen again. But that's like some alternate reality to me now. And I prefer this reality.

Hey, the InExOb got a hit from http://georgewbush.com/! The page describes him as a "reformer" & a "Washington outsider" (guess he doesn't talk much to his dad) & even complains that McCain spent a lot of money in the Virginia primary! Now THAT'S inexplicable! This is closer to what I think of George Weasel Bush.

SHAWT: Do you have (blah blah blah) wine?
ME: No, I've never even heard of that.
HER: Where would it be if you had it?

3/1 Leapt Day

WHAT, all that crap yesterday & now you want more?! What am I, your damn Busy Box?!
Too bad if I am, cuz I was too busy to notice anything interesting today. You could go here to see a Quicktime movie about a Canadian Toast Party. That's sorta what it's about. While that's loading, here's another good 1, courtesy of the Cruel Site (OK, I admit it--it has more good sites than cruel). It's proof of what I've been saying regarding the InEx's success: You don't need a hi-tech glitzy site to get hits, or even a brilliant idea. You need a DUMB idea, like, oh let's say "Here is a stupid thing I own. Ha ha, watch me make fun of it!" You just need to think of it before someone ELSE does. Really, there's no great intuitive leap involved with the IMDB or eBay; they just had a workable idea & got there 1st. The idea behind Robot Frank's Life is obvious: The lone survivor of an army of killer robots tries to fit in with the humans. Yeah, anybody could've thought of that. It's funny. I love his visit to Taco Bell, & the diary entry about the monster truck rally. Unfortunately, the diary's in a type face that only a human-hating killer robot could love, so that's why we'e experimenting with Arial Helvetica here.
Arial Helvetica was the Greek Little Mermaid, you know.


I had to deal with a real asshole today, but unlike SHAWTS, Real Assholes aren't funny. So all I have tonight is my entry in Robot Frank's guestbook:
Hello Robot Frank! I like you. You are cool & hate the Humans. I hate the Humans! I wish I could be a cool robot like you. I tried to walk robotically & scowl, but people just thought that I was an 80s breakdancer having a really bad day. Are there operations for us Humans who want to desert their species & become Robots? Where they transfer your brain into a ruthlesly powerful new body with laser eyes & crushing strength & antilock brake systems? They wouldn't have to transplant all my brain. There are parts I don't need, like the parts with all those memories of the Gilligan's Island episodes I watched as a kid. Except for the time Gilligan got hit on the head with a coconut! Ha ha ha, that still makes me laff! But I'd trade even that for laser eyes. And 5 bucks. I could use 5 bucks. Do you have 5 bucks, Robot Frank?


Tip from an article in the Beverage Journal on carding the underage: "Minors often look young."
What a load of crap! Minors have those hats with the lights on them! Hey, you! Yeah, you with the pickaxe & the coal dust on your face! You're obviously a minor, get the hell out of my store!!
Oh, wait--min0rs. Never mind.


Well, Jess & I are locked into going to the Salvador Dali show at the Atheneum. 2 of her friends went; 1 only got in cuz she'd bought tickets ahead of time, the other didn't get to go for the opposite reason. So I got ours at $14! each! Crimeny. I already mentioned my last visit to the Atheneum; here's the 1 before it. Which isn't as funny.

I was shocked at the lines going into the museum. There were this many people wanting to see a Dada exhibit?! And there was a guy, dressed in business suit & raincoat, holding his briefcase to his cheek like a megaphone, screaming at how we were all going to go to H--E--L--L--!! if we dared set foot inside. WHOA! Dadaism in action!! I wish I'd thought of that!
Then I got in line for tickets & realized the Mapplethorpe exhibit was in town. Groan. Art is what you call art, but Gays in Bondage is like "Piss Christ" or that elephant dung Madonna--something that causes rightist business suit & briefcase creeps to scream that Art is Satan's work, so we cut Gummint funding for ALL art cuz some art isn't as nonthreatening as a velvet Elvis. I skipped Mapplethorpe.
They had some classics of Dada there--a couple by Marchel Duchamps: the infamous signed urinal (just a urinal, but signing it made it art, just like signing a poster of black glued BVDs makes it art), & even the 1st real Dadaist piece, "N'est ce pas une Pipe." If you've never seen it, it's a 6-foot photorealistic painting of a tobacco pipe. The title translates as "This is not a pipe."
I 1st came across it in a book on the history of art that my parents had when I was a pup. It made me mad. OF COURSE it's a pipe!! This is the STUPIDEST thing I've ever seen!! Every time I looked at it, I just got madder!
The difference between a 10 year old's art sense & that of a business suit & briefcase is that a 10 year old's mind eventually grows. A year later the family got an encyclopedia (NOTE TO YOUNG'UNS IN AUDIENCE: an "encyclopedia" is like the "net" except you don't need a phoneline & can find things quicker) & I came across the entry on "Dada." There was a picture of a sculpture by Man Ray, a clothes iron with carpet tacks soldered to the bottom, titled "Gift." The entry had no explanation of that, but did describe "N'est ce pas une Pipe." It wasn't a pipe. It was a painting of a pipe.
A stunned silence, followed by laughter. NOW I got it!! Even if it was a pipe, what good would a 6-foot-long tobacco pipe be?! Suddenly, I got "Gift"--what use is an iron covered with carpet tacks? NONE! Not long before this I received the Xmas gift of a belt buckle--not a belt, mind you, a buckle! It was as useless as an iron that'd shred your clothes as you pressed them. Everyone has gotten the "Gift" at some point! The whole "ontological syllogism" of Dada was that there wasn't any! IT WAS A JOKE! Forget the art of satire, this was Satire as Art!! Ever since then, my heart belongs to Dada!


OK, I'm stupid.
"N'est ce pas une Pipe" is A) by Magritte, not Duchamps; B) the lastmajor Dadaist work, not the 1st, & more famous for being the 1st Surrealist work; C) it's called "The Treachery of Images," not "N'est ce pas une Pipe;" D) it's not even SPELLED that way on the painting! (thanks to Govynda for jump-starting my memory). And if you looked at the InExOb Sun or Mon, go look AGAIN now that the correct final pic is there. I noticed while renaming the pics that the last 2 had the same size, so I reloaded both the Geo editor & the Ob to make sure everything thing was OK. I'd forgotten that last summer the same thing happened, & I had to restart the computer to get it to show up right. Oh well, only 1,000 people saw it screwed up. GROAN.

My horoscope for Sunday told me that I'd have "a gourmet meal, possibly featuring boiled lobster." Me & the other half-billion Aries on the planet, all wearing lil bibs. Sometimes I think that even the people who write horoscopes don't really believe them. (hmm, I should check with someone in the business on that...)

Nuthin' to the weekend report--2 consecutive 12 hour shifts meant only a race twixt me & Kill Kill to see who could sleep the longest (I won). I finally checked out the opposite of the Cruel Site, the Cool Site of the Day. What a SCAM! He wants $15 just to consider your site! I haven't looked too deeply into the site, cuz it's idea of "cool" tends to be sites like Sharper Image or eBay. Basically, it's a site-sized banner ad.

I bought for $5 a "teach yourself Java" book a month ago, which I had every intention of doing, until it became something I had to do at home...48 hour workweeks tend to make me want to do little more than veg on the Pookie, play with the kitten, or similiar excitement. I can't even get motivated to vacuum the carpet on a day off. Looking into the Cruel Site a bit further, I saw that the webmaster's name is Rogers (sic) Cadenhead. Which would give me a proclivity to cruelty, too. Waitaminnit--That's the name of the guy who wrote the Java book! So I indirectly paid him to view my site, I guess.

There was a study done not to long ago that found that you were more likely to be violent if your parents gave you a stupid name. Since that's the 1st personal info that anyone learns about you, I suppose a lifetime of watching people stifle laughter or say something rude & obvious could make you a bit misanthropic (note: guys named "Bill" have been aware for decades that there was a skit that went "Ohhh nooo, Mr Bill!" no matter how original the observation seems to you). I knew someone whose brother named his son "Ariel." At the time, I said that I hoped that his high school class never read Shakespeare & found out that Ariel is a fairy. Instead, he would've been about 12 when a certain Disney movie came out.
Giving your kid a stupid 1st name is bad enough, but what's with these families that pass on hideous surnames from generation to generation? How would you like to be named "Butt"? That's just 1 I've seen. Other classics: Grub, Sweetlickey, Lavatori, & the ever-popular Suckling. I had a college friend whose family's original German last name was Schwarz. When they emigrated to the US, everyone read it as "Schwartz," &, well, you know how Germans of a certain generation liked Jews. So he changed it. To Beezer. Not much of an improvement, really.


The Oldies station advertises its web site--& I have no idea why I just linked that, as it's of no real interest--anyway, they tell you that you can "keep up to date on the latest Oldies." Ha wha? "Latest" Oldies? "Up to date"?
"This just in: Elvis still dead...Doo-Wop still waiting for a comeback...Jim Morrison still dead...Backstreet Boys 3 months away from being forgotten forever...Jimi Hendrix still dead...Latest Oldie releases: None...Keith Richards still dead, but somehow walking..."

The phone rings, I answer with the store's name.
HER: Huh? What? Is this McDonalds?
ME: No.
HER: This isn't McDonalds?
ME: No.
HER: Not McDonalds?
ME: No.
HER (the dawn of reason breaks): I must have a wrong number!
I theorize to Rudy as to why you'd call McDonalds--not for a take-out order. To ask if they're hiring, I guess, which ranks up there with do-bears-shit-in-the-woods.
Seconds later, the phone rings again...Guess Who.
I guess no one fails the pre-employment McD's intelligence test.


Prly shouldn't even be typing this, as a thunderstorm is passing through...through CT, in early March. It was 75 out today. Which meant "Oh, it's so beautiful out!" allll day. I know that people are just making small talk, but it's hard to muster more than a "Yep" after the 50th person has said this. Yesterday I got so much of it that I started arguing with people just for a change of pace. And it's true: the same people cawing about how "gorgeous" it is in March when it's 55 & 100% overcast will be bitching about the exact same weather in April.

We had a store mascot today: a small bird that flew in the back door during a beer delivery. It couldn't figure out how to escape; it'd swoop towards the open front door, then veer onto the exit sign. The owner left the back door open so that it could hear its companion birds, & coaxed it out by waving a broom. I named it "Bobby the Bukoff Bird." Cuz like Bukoff drinkers, birds have no teeth either.


Bleahh. I have no motivation to do this--too tired. Woke up with a migraine & thought "If I only had another hour or 2 of sleep, I'd be OK." The last time I thought that, I went to work anyway & was miserable all day. This time I followed my own advice & gulped 6 Ibuprofen & slept an extra 75 minutes. Didn't feel good until late in the day, but at least I didn't feel awful.

So, while there is stuff I could write about, I'm not gonna. Here's an oddity from the mailbox.
She signed her name "LaLa," so I just had be a wiseass:

>How's Tinky Winky doing since the surgery?  And how's Po-Po's drug rehab going? 

Tinky, well, he okay, or now we say "she"...she carryin' tha leftovas in the magic bag. Or now
we say purse since she ALL out, girl! 
Po Po, thas a sad story.  He & Dipsy flunked out the rehab, now they inta sellin', spend more
time at the Hooker Hotel than round the house anymore, they "upstairs-downstairs", 'nowhamsayn. 
I hope you'll say a prayer to gourd for them.


THE most generic bumper sticker ever: "Proud Parent of a Timothy Edwards Middle School Student." Not honor student, not good citizen, not excellent eraser-clapper, just "student." Proud generator of an offspring.

Fooooour daaaaays offfff! So don't be surprised if this is all you see until Thurs.



What I Did On My Almost-Spring Vacation by Billy Young, age 6

The long-awaited Dali trip began with an event momentous: Jessica was ON TIME! And she'd even taken the time to buy McNuggets on the way. Amazing. Then she gave me a Woody. Literally, as it was a Happy Meal toy from "Toy Story 2," which I have yet to see. We made it to the Atheneum with me getting only slightly lost. Amazing, again. Good thing we got our tickets in advance, as there were "DALI SHOW SOLD OUT" signs everywhere. We had to wait almost 10 minutes to get our damn tickets, as some old lady held up the line insisting that she should get in anyway. What a SHAM (Stupid Human At the Museum). It had rained heavily for the last 2 days, so Jess lugged her umbrella along. Mr Security Guard demanded that she put it in the coatroom. "Well, I guess no one will steal it," she said, though I took my digicam out of my trenchcoat anyway. It was a good thing we left our coats there, as we were headed into some major body heat. The line in to Dali wasn't too long, but it crawled inside the gallery. They were letting people in every half hour, so when 20 minutes elapsed & we'd seen about 1/3, we got cranky. But 10 minutes later, no one was walking around with cattle prods, herding us out while yelling "That's enough Art for you pigs!" so we got to see it all. Lots of cool paintings & weird stuff, like stereoscopic paintings you had to press your nose up against a triangular mirror to see, & even a hologram titled "Alice Cooper's Brain." It was just that; a spinning 3D image of Alice with his brain falling out the back of his head. Jess: "Help me Obi-Wan! Youre' my only hope! TZZT!" I wonder if Luke would've gotten so psyched if Leia was played by Alice.
Jess & I wandered the museum, having a grand old time, oohing & ahhing or cracking wise. Highlights: St John the Baptist & "The Architect". We hit the Dali exhibit precisely at the right time. All the subsequent lines were longer by a good factor of 5. We bought some gift store junk, a Dali coffee mug for Jess & a some Dali fridge magnets & a Dali gleeeeter globe for me.
When we returned to the coatroom, someone had stolen Jess' umbrella (or, rather, "traded" their inferior 1 for hers). I tested it & reopened a gash on my finger from a day before & started spurting blood. Kind of a surrealist moment, I guess.
We went to Friendly's for some chow. Jess ordered a Reese's Pieces sundae with extra pieces. They over-respected her request; she got so many at 1 point it looked like she had a mouthfull of marbles. We gabbed for a while at Casa del Young, with her niece Kill Kill being very ladylike & respectfully quiet. Jess is planning to move out of her parent's place (thank gourd). Her big expense: furniture, especially a bed. Juuust so happens that I have a perfectly good bed clogging up my dining room--too good to throw away, & definately good enough for Jess. Cool! I need the room as much as she needs the bed. If I'd heard the ICQ "uh-oh!" from the computer in the next room, I would've had Jess chat with Kitty, but that wasn't meant to be.

What's up wth Kitty? This addition ot the Sailor Splut mythos, which is funny & shiny if you're familiar with said mythos.

Monday was to be antiquing day, but the place in Willington I went to had changed its schedule to being closed on Mon. So I went 15 minutes up the road to Sturbridge MA, which is always a waste as the overpriced place there has nada of interest. But I also stopped--FINALLY--at the Traveller Restaurant & Bookstore. I say "finally" in the sense that I always asked my parents to go there back when we'd drive by on our way to Cape Cod for the summer, so this visit was a long time coming. The bookstore was floor-to-ceiling shelving, with the racks 2 FEET apart. Meaning actually browsing was nigh-impossible. I found some cool stuff in the 5/$1 box, such as this: "Uh, lady, do you think you should be letting your kid do that?" I also got a 1961 pamphlet from the NYSE about the future of space flight--I'm a total sucker for that stuff. The predictions for the far-off time of 1970 were actually pretty damn close, unlike an old InExOb. It was written by Kraaft A. Ehricke, a name that screams "Sure, I tossed V2 bombs at London 15 years ago, but I'm a GOOD Nazi now!" Funniest part: The Dow closing at 231. Maybe someday they'll break that historic 250! I searched the free book rack for anything worth taking, finally settling on "The Big Eye," a 1949 sci-fi hardcover. A bit of web searching told me that it was the 1st science fiction book ever published by Doubleday, so I would've thought that it had more value than nothing. It begins with a truly silly idea: in 1960, the Commies get the A bomb (in reality, they got it a few months after the book was published), & New York City is completely abandoned for fear of being bombed. Just like in history *snarf!*
I spent part of my day off from the liquor store going to a liquor store, "New England's Largest." It must be an OK place to work, as the employees are chipper & the cashier calls you "hon," but it's this chilly, windowless garage of a building that would quickly drive me to drink (hmm, maybe that's why they're so chipper). I go there as they sometimes have clearances on cool booze you can't get in CT (plus they have no sales tax, & lower built-in taxes than here). I picked up a bottle of Peurto Vallerto tequila, which was in the expensive heavy-glass corked bottle 1 associates with $40/50 tequila, but only cost me $13.99. YUMMY it was! I had a shot or 3, then woke up fully clothed at 10PM without any recollection of going to bed. Hmmm. Maybe it was more than 3.

Tues was the pre-planned do-nothing day. I did go to a surplus store at a factory. This may be where I get the replacement for the kitchen bed; I'm planning on a bookcase, plus a table to put the old Pookies on (& hook up the Adam!). They had some laptops for sale. While $200 is a good price, the lack of documentation, installed software, & a guarantee that they'd actually function made me pass. I picked up 2 Tribbles at the Salv Army, complete with tags IDing them as giveaways for the Deep Space 9 ep, where they go back in time to 1966--err, the 22nd century--to the classic Trek ep. If you haven't seen it, check it out if you have the slightest interest in Star Trek. The digital merging of the old & new footage is flawless, & it's really funny. Fave part: the scene where the characters don't know they're in a room full of Klingons--cuz they're the cheezy 60s Klingons, which are basically guys with shoe polish on their faces. O'BRIEN: Those are Klingons?! BASHIR: What happened? Was there some horrible genetic accident? WORF: We do NOT like to speak of it!
Then I listened to the ambient radio show (that I followed for years, but now only get to hear on vacation) on the Walkman while I went into the woods. The Green Bomb is ready to go off--all the trees have buds, tiny patches of grass & low leafy plants are here & there. I can't wait. Springtime!
I got my tax refund, too! YAY! Now I can pay off the car! I call the bank & find that I owe twice as much as I thought I did...BOOO. I'm making more money than I ever have, but I'm living on the same amount I made when I started, as all of my raises have gone to the car or the IRA. Sigh. Maybe next year.

Boy, that kinda wandered all over the map. Guess I'll put what's here up today, rather than wait until Thurs, where it might fill up the whole of the New. Plus, it was pretty dumb to put a link to the New in the InExOb when I had no plans on posting for most of the week.
Umm. Now it has no ending. Umm. Just kinda


Here's another reason why I wonder why I haven't moved to Canada. Gimme a Louisville Slugger & John Rocker's head--PLAAAAY BAAALLL!! "WHOA NELLY! He tore the cover off the ball & it's OUT OF THE PARK! Wait--he really tore the skull off Rocker's head! But what's that tiny, moldy peach-pit sized thing that flew out? And a lucky fan catches Rocker's brain!" "It's not like he's gonna miss it, Dan."

I'd like to tell you of the exciting stuff that happened to me Weds, but there was none. And is it just me, or am I getting too detailed in this thing? It's supposed to be amusing, not my anal codifying of every damn thing I do. Maybe I should pare down the details.

65 & sunny out...It's a beautiful cookie day. Bought jeans. Whoa, exciting. They were black for about 2 hours, then they became spackled with white cat hair as I watched Gundam Wing. Kitty is big on this show, but all I can do is quote a line from it: "It makes no sense; it's too chaotic!" Bought a 60s desk clock that is beautiful in its ugliness, at least for $4. Despite appearances, no, it is not embedded in the side of a cat. (Hey, kids! Can you spot the 2 InExObs in the pic? Answers tmw!) I think I've finally hit the Too Many Clocks point, as I have no idea where to put it.

Went to Media Play, gift cards in hand, to buy the Brak Show CD. No dice, BUDdy! So I got William Orbit's "Pieces in the Modern Style," which I think is meant as a nostalgic tribute to the early Moog LPs like "Switched On Bach." Quite nice. It came with the most singularly STUPID idea I've seen since the Disco Version of In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida (yes, it exists: by Hot RS, I own it): The Techno remix of Barber's "Adagio For Strings." If you've never heard the Adagio, you have NO CLUE how bad an idea this is (& you have heard it--it's been overused in the media in places like "Platoon"). The clerk started to tell me how much I had left on the gift card, then mumbled "The receipt'll tell you." $1 & FREAKING 28 CENTS!! They couldn't just GIVE me that?! And I also
Well, unless you count going to a used furniture store as "interesting," that's it. This thing is getting too anal. Tmw I go back to work, & I wish that there'll be all kindsa nutty SHAWT action going on for me to report.

Actually, I wish that there ISN'T. I wish that every day was a lazy day of nice-weather nothing, buying inconsequential junk with a white cat purring on my lap while I watch stupid TV. I could live this day forever.


HER: (pointing at Mr Boston brandy) Gimme some of that Mr Coffee.
Hey, if they made a Mr Bukoff, half our customers would never have to leave home!

Too few hours at work are being followed by too *many*--So here's another warning that this may update less frequently in the near future.