Hypodermic Hidden in the Hymnal

NEW 97

"What monstrosities would walk the streets were some people's faces as unfinished as their minds."
--Eric Hoffer


      Not quite the change of seasons, but certainly a major change. At my job.
      Oh, I still have it. I just have to be there at 8AM.
      Yes, it is a big deal. "Not a morning person" nowhere nearly describes me--"Dawn is toxic" does. I get up at 11AM, now it'll have to at least be 7AM. If you're scoffing "Ha! I get up at 6AM every day!" well, try getting up at 2AM from now on. Seems like a big deal to you now, huh?
      After 12 years, it's going to take me months to get used to this. In fact, I may never get used to it, as I have to work Saturdays 12-9PM. So 6 days a week I'll be going to bed at 10 or 11, and 1 day a week I won't even get home until 9 freakin' 30. Thank gourd I have Sunday off, but I'm sure that it'll be shot as a day off. I'll sleep until noon and then be in bed 10 hours later.
      But what am I going to do, get another job? This economy is a hirer's market, and I'd have almost the same chance as winning the lottery.
      I was supposed to leave at 6 today, but I bolted at 540. I needed to get out of there so that I could clear my mind with a beer and most importantly, the love of the cats. Killsy was surprised to see me home when it's still light out. "Get used to it" I said. Byron was eating when he noticed me, and turned and dropped a piece of kibble from his mouth in astonishment. He did a spit take! I laughed.
      It isn't going to be any fun. I'm sure that I'll be so fatigued that I'll make a lot of stupid mistakes, and that's not going to make the job any easier. But I have a job. Until I make too many mistakes.
      But if I had a time machine, I'd let the last beer manager keep stealing.

      "Aroused elephant tops list of bizarre holiday grievances: Telegraph Travel has compiled a list of the 20 most riduculous complaints received by tour operators."


      Rorschach�s Journal (On a Boring Night)





      Today was the first day of my new work schedule. I got up at the crack of dawn--
      Okay, that's an exaggeration. I got up 10 minutes after the crack of dawn.
      I got 8 hours or so of sleep, but my circadian rhythyms still said that it was the middle of my night. On the commute in, I realized that I wasn't looking at the cars in front of me, but at some neutral point in space. And I realized that just in time. I don't know how long it takes my crappy old car to go from zero to 60, but it takes about 3 seconds for it to from 60 to zero. Because smoke from my burning tires billowed when I slammed on the brakes in order to not hit the Corvette in front of me, when the traffic went from 60 to zero. That took a month of rubber off of my tires.
      The only customers at 8AM are--well, take a guess. You're right! They're pathetic drunks! I got to see the people I usually see at lunch and after they leave work. And very few of them. We were doing business at a rate of $79 an hour, so of course we needed 3 workers.
      But I was there because of the deliveries! Of which we had none. And to order beer! As the (drunken) store manager only wants me to order when the salesmen are in the store, and to get the deliveries only on days I work, so that I can check it in. You can imagine the frisson of excitement I felt when when I found out that of the 4 salesmen, ONLY ONE COMES ON MONDAYS. So if I wait for the other salesmen to come on Tuesday, the deliveries will come on Wednesday...when I'm off. Did I mention that the store manager is a drunk?
      It took me 4 hours to more-or-less wake up. I had my hands jammed in my pockets half the day, as I was so cold, so very cold...I checked the thermostat and realized that your core body temperature is at its lowest at the point that your body decides it's the middle of the night, and for my body, it still was.
      The hours flew by, but the minutes dragged. I ended up doing 2 orders without the salesmen, just to give myself something to do today, and something else to do tomorrow when I put the orders away.
      I'm typing this at 6PM, and man, am I tired.
      Tired, but still hired, not fired. There's always that to remember.


      For 3 years I've kept a notebook--the spiral-bound, paper kind--that I started to see if there was any pattern in how and when I got Young's Syndrome, that random and violent puking. I'd write down a brief description of the day's weather, and when I went to bed and woke up, as I thought that they might be factors. The Syndrome lasted for years, ending as abruptly and inexpicably as it began, but the notebook had become a habit. Last night's go-to-bed time was written down as "830! 830! 830!!" I went to bed because I couldn't possibly stay awake any longer.
      I was still out of it this morning, even with 10.5 hours sleep, but I recovered much quicker. My current worry: Since I have to work until 9PM Saturdays, was this just because it was my first day on this schedule, or is my brain going to shut down at 830 every night? When I have to drive 20 miles home? We'll see, I guess. Hopefully not by being awakened by driving into a tractor trailer in the wrong lane.

      Feel-good animal story of the day (and no cats!): Parrot Honored For Saving Toddler's Life. The most amazing thing is what the parrot said. Animals are far smarter than what humans give them credit for.

      I usually don't link to Jon Carroll--because you should read him every weekday anyway--but as a Recovered Catholic, I'll link to Always wear a party hat, about the Dope's--er, Pope's, insistence that condoms cause AIDS. The Pope does wear a party hat all the time, a big goofy one, and also a dress. Of course I want relationship advice from the 70-year-old virgin!
      The column ends with a quote from another site you should always read. Google if it's unfamiliar.

      So did anybody try joining Homescan when they did that open enrollment a few months ago? I assume not, as they're doing it again. Of course, in my case, they took 18 months to offer me a spot. But if you haven't tried yet, you do get points that you can redeem for Free Stuff. It's worth a shot.


      Being sick last week meant having twice as much to do today. I was afraid I'd collapse in bed yesterday early, then sleep all day. But I stayed up until midnight and awoke at 9AM, so maybe my body's already getting used to the new schedule.
      So I did the laundry, then took a hike in the state park on our first nice Spring day. I did my bimonthly buy-in of cheap junk food (although the unhealthiest thing I got was malted milk balls) at Dollar Tree, then went for last week's postponed physical.
      I get compliments at the doctor's office. Of course, they're things like "You have really great veins!" (STAB!) I was given a bandage after the bloodletting that had an ad on it. You can't even pump your gas in this country without seeing an ad on the pump's handle. I hope they got them for free, as it fell off immediately. The tech joked "Don't buy Januvia!" I said, "You should've gone with the generic."
      I was twice complimented on my good cholesterol, both times being "123! I've never seen it that high!" They said that increases one's longevity, so I'll live long enough to see peak oil and climate change collapse modern civilization. I'll be the oldest man in Bartertown!
      The doctor wasn't pleased. Not with me, but his new $2K EKG machine. I almost got my hairy chest shaved until the doctor realized that the cords had a short. I was about to leave the office when the doctor said to the student doctor who had done almost all of my examination, "Oh, I missed the good part?" "I forgot!" said the student. The "good part," as I'm sure you've guessed, is the "fondle the junk and finger the ass" part. That was mercifully brief, and the student said "I'm sorry I forgot that." I said, "I'm sorry you remembered it!"
      Unless something untoward comes up in my bloodwork, I'm in perfect health. I'll sell you some of my good cholesterol!
      I still wasn't done. I had a one-day pass at Sam's Club. I asked the...exiter, I guess, the person who checks your receipt when you leave, if I could use my coupon at the register, but she said that I had to go to customer service. There was only one person working customer service, and she was giving someone an ID, and a Sam's Club credit card, and then rang up her twice-the-size-as-a-grocery-store's-cart of stuff. When I was finally waited on, I was told that No, just hand that to the cashier when you're done. So that wasn't just 5 minutes of my life I'll never get back, it was 5 minutes of my life spent in a Wal-Mart.
      Based on my experience with a 3-month BJ's Club free pass, I was only going to get chicken, cheese and Charmin. The first they didn't have in the type I was looking for, the second was in a size smaller than BJ's and priced higher, and the last I couldn't find. They had clementines, those European tangerines that are my favorite fruit, but they were actually $2 more expensive than my grocery store. Having just done the laundry and realizing that I could do it 4 times a year less if I just one more week's worth of socks, I checked their rows and rows of socks. Every pair of which was size 9 1/2 to 12, and not priced much cheaper than KMart, where you can get any size. I did buy some stuff relatively cheap so as not to have wasted a trip, but I'd get a membership at BJ's before I'd get one here. And I wouldn't get one, as the membership fee isn't worth the yearly amount I'd save on 128oz cans of baked beans.
      If you've been to a warehouse club, you know that they don't give you bags for your purchase, just used boxes. In my limited experience, these are always for cleaning products, maybe because they're pretty strongly made. I grabbed one that held Shout for my stuff. One should always check for cat interest in a box before recycling it. Turned upside down, it's a cardboard endtable. Both kids checked it out--such a novelty, a box you sit under and on top of! The Queen found it lacking, but the Feet finds it most compelling.

      PR�T-�-MUTILATE --Glamorous Grotesqueries From Days Gone By, fashions of previous centuries, including "the Polish plait, which was a crusty, oily mass of filthy, matted hair. Often as hard as a helmet, it was a tangled mess held together by dried blood, dirt, dead lice, and pus" and an Italian miniskirt-for-men that was designed to show off their malted milk balls.


      I'm actually adapting to the new schedule far faster than I would've thought possible. But I still spend the first several hours of the day, despite being rested, feeling weird. Like something's just a bit off.

      I was asked this question by a mother of two toddlers, but you'd get that from the context anyway:
      WOMAN: Do you have a place to go poopies?
      ME: ...Like, "a bathroom"?
      WOMAN (cringing slightly): It's been a long four years!

      Byron still likes his overturned Shout box. When I did the laundry yesterday, I threw in a thermal blanket that was covered in cat hair. It was just at the bottom of the hamper; in fact, it's been there for months. It was nice and warm, but it was so thin and small that it would always slide off me when asleep. Once I got the cat hair off, I...placed it where cats woud sleep on it. Yes, yes, I know I shoulda skipped a step. I put it near the back window, so that they had a nice-soft-warm place to watch the birds. A certain young lady took to it, but a certain gentleman refused to even step on it. So I moved it to the old office chair, the one I was about to throw out as no cat sleeps on it. And, wow, has it so far turned out to be the greatest throne ever for the Queen of the World! She's barely left it.

       When I saw the trailer for The Haunting in Connecticut and it claimed that it was "based on a true story," I immediately thought "I'll bet the Warrens had a hand in this." They're either known as "internationally famous paranormal investigators" or "scam artists, always looking for a new way to make a buck off of the credulous." And guess what! They were involved! And just like that other "real" Connecticut "haunting," it was started by the homeowner's greed:


      Remember when the marquee of the movie theater across the parking lot from my job said that they going to show Media Goes to Jail, and I said that'd be like them saying they'd be showing Stare Trek next? When I got in today, the marquee proudly announced that they'd soon show Startek.
      Star Trek AND TekWars? It's the Shatnerpocalaypse!

      I put away 400 cases of liquor and wine yesterday, and 500 cases of beer today. Guess that I don't need to spend on a gym membership.

      The store (drunken) manager tried to give a pill to his cat. I hope I never have to do that, as it seems like a 2-person job. And he proved that; she ran away, using her back claws on his arm to escape. He won himself a long, deep gouge. He put a big bandaid on it.
      But it wasn't helping. I said, See a doctor. He said a day or two later "I scrubbed out the wound with a toothbrush, then I dug the infection out with a pocket knife." He decided to self-medicate by placing a bandage with some ointment over the wound. And every damn day he'd complain about how bad the wound was. Turns out that he was allergic to the ointment, and it burned his skin. I said, See a doctor.
      After A MONTH, the infection had crawled all over his arm. So he took his wife's leftover emoxycyllin, and finally went to the doctor. They gave him some medication. His arm started healing immediatelly. His infection was cured!
      Today he spent all day yelling about how bad his arm was inflamed. And it really was all puffed-up and red. Because after the medication worked, he'd put some lotion on it that he was allergic to.
      You know the phrase, "A lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client"? A patient who decides to be his own doctor is twice that.
      Somehow this led to him telling us that "They say you can cure athlete's foot by pissing on it! I got athlete's foot once from my son!"
      ME: "So, did you?"
      "My wife got it, too!"
      "So, did you?"
      "It was terrible! I hope I never get that again!"
      "So, DID YOU?"
      "No! I didn't piss on it!"
      "So, did you all pee on each other's? As a family project?"
      He laughed and gave up. I said "That could be the slogan! 'The family that sprays together stays together!'"

      Speaking of slogans:

You Can Really Taste The Splut!

Enter a word for your own slogan:

Generated by the Advertising Slogan Generator. Get more Splut slogans.

      I keep clicking, and I get even more ridiculous ones, like "The Splut With The Hole" and "Made To Make Your Splut Water" and "Unzip Your Splut" and, inevitably, "The Splut of Champions." Although "Splut Born and Bred" would make a good tshirt. I'll stop now, and let you discover your own.
      (link via Lilly; wonderful nickname via Kitsplut, whose slogan would be either "You'll Look a Little Lovelier Each Day with Fabulous Pink Splut", or:)

The World's Favourite Splut.

Enter a word for your own slogan:

Generated by the Advertising Slogan Generator. Get more Splut slogans.


      Today I was scheduled 12 to 9, and since I have Sunday off, that meant that last night was the only one of the week that I could sleep as late as I wanted without having it impact my bedtime. I opened my eyes at 9AM, said "Hell no," and peacefully went back to sleep, my hand on Byron's butt.
      Obviously, at 930 the carpenters began banging the crap out of the condo hallway.
      I knew what they were doing. They were replacing the baseboard that they'd removed when they'd painted the hallway. Six WEEKS ago. They were so loud, even the nearly-deaf cat knew they were there. The one who Hears All, the scaredy-cat--well, you can guess how she liked them apples.
      I surfed the net in my bedclothes until the alarm went off. And they finished their pounding at the exact second it was time for me to leave the shower.

      The ex-beer manager, the (last, latest) thiefy one, has already found a job! Quite a feat in this economy. He was hired by the gym he works out at. "Cleaning the machines."
      He's a sweat-mopper. Doesn't sound like a step up, really. Although I'm sure that he can steal all the used rags that he wants, and his bosses won't care.
      (Although it sounds like it could be a good job for networking--if he's learned his lesson, he could parlay it into something more. He wasn't stupid per se; he was only stupid about that one thing he repeatedly did, stealing)


      UpChuck became BoreChuck. He just kept obsessively doing the exact same cartoon--OBAMA is MORTGAGING our CHILDREN'S FUTURE to CHINA with his DEFICIT SPENDING full of PORK, and, NO THE LAST 8 YEARS NEVER HAPPENED! BUSH DID NOT DO ANY OF THAT! WE ALWAYS PARTY OF FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY and LALALA we can't HEEEAR YOOOOU!!!!
      I don't know if that counts as hypocrisy. I think that involves at least a bit of realizing that you now hate what you always loved. It's more like DoubleThink, or cognitive dissonance, the ability to hold two mutually self-contradicting thoughts as "true" at the same time. "Deficit spending's only bad now that we aren't doing it! Then it was AWESOME!" And that sums up basically every cartoon Chuckles has done for 2 months.

      But then we get this one!


       SERFIN' USA!
      Now THIS is some prime Chuck-for-Brains inexplicable asshattery! B. HUSSEIN Obama's stimulus package will bring back feudalism, say the elite sipping lattes their illegal immigrant servants made them on their mansion's ornate balcony. (NOTE: not Evil East Coast Elites, Colorado Springs millionaires, which is TOTALLY BETTER [Colorado Springs was described as "if you had a city built by the planners of gated communities" by Colorado reader Kiru Banzai]) The GOP just wanted to waste the money on the rich! HUSSEIN wants to waste the money by giving people jobs and making them SLAVES! (esnes, technically) That's a job that should be done by PEONS! (esnes, technically)
      Welcome back, batshit Chuck! Pork is the other and better white meat when you're Republican, but the WORST THING EVAR when it benefits the lower classes! By which he means you and me, the ones who do the actual work.
      Think I'm kidding? The next one he did was about how we should be outraged about how the CEOs of AIG are being ROBBED of their taxpayer-granted multimillion-dollar bonuses. Chuck clearly has a readership that's less than 1% of the American population, but it's the richest part, while the rest of us are just worker ants to be crushed beneath their Gucci loafers.
      Bonus Point! If you look closely, the Bridge to Nowhere is being built over sharks. A big danger in Alaskan waters! Or maybe Chuck subconsciously telling us what his party has jumped.

      An excerpt from the silent movie (by Cecil B. De Mille!) The Godless Girl. The Reefer Madness of atheism! Every title card is funnier than the last, and then the new pledge to "The Godless Society" has to vow an oath on...oh, just watch it! And then Our Hero bails because of the War on Christmas, 1929 version.


      Matt Bors has a cartoon about the banking crisis that's funny, accurate, and Star Warsy.



      After being sick 2 weeks ago, I rescheduled my lunch with the pulchritudinous Mrs. Jessica for today. After waiting 30 minutes, I was starting to wonder if this was an April Fools' joke, but she was delayed by road construction. More accurately, tree destruction, which I saw happening on the way in on my part of the journey through Massachusetts. Since this was arranged back when I was on second shift, I requested a place that served breakfast all day, so she chose the Sturbridge, MA Cracker Barrel. I mean, noon? I can't eat any food that early! But I'm on first shift now, and was awake at 830AM, and one hungry, hungry hippo at 12.
      I sat on a bench outside--no fun when it's 40 degrees out and breezy. Less fun when the breeze is blowing an old man's cigar smoke in your face. He asked if he could sit on the bench, and I said Sure! and got up, as the cigar was a bit of a deal-breaker. But he put it out, and I discovered that 50 years ago he used to work not far from where I live, back when it was a mill town. Since I'm a terrible conversationalist, and was increasingly distracted by Jessica's nonappearance, I never thought to ask him what certainly would've been an interesting question: "So, WWII or Korea?" As I'm sure he was in at least one sucky war.
      It became too cold for him, and then also me. Eventually some old lady burst through the door, and it was Jess. Wearing a hat. An old hat. That's her new thing, as her old pocketbook/purse fetish has reached the level of my old clock fetish--eventually, you get one of every style you want, and you kinda stop (or run out of wall space, in my case).
      She ordered breakfast, so I did, too. I asked her what "grits" were like, as they sounded like something they'd fill potholes with, and she said that that's what they tasted like, too. I got the blueberry pancakes with a side of bacon, and found out that the 3 pancakes were only slightly smaller than the plate. And the bacon was so greasy that it dripped; I could've used a dropcloth. I only made it halfway through the meal, as my metabolism doesn't need a huge amount of food no matter how much energy I burn. She had OJ, 2 eggs over easy, bacon (not at all greasy, how odd), hash browns, sourdough toast, and I may be forgetting something, like maybe an entire ham. She has a metabolism the opposite of mine; she can power down the food and never gain an ounce.
      And she also has narcolepsy. She's taking this crazy scrip that costs $65 a month with insurance. She has to take 1 or 2 exactly-20-minute-naps a day, and can't drive for more than 30 minutes one-way. It's a good thing that she doesn't need to work in the financial sense, although she really wants to, in the "want to do something useful" sense (she's applied to volunteer at the local no-kill shelter). And like me and my meds, she's on them forever.
      After an hour of our usual conversation-that-goes-everywhere, we spent an hour antiquing. She mentioned "Bill," the horrible little doll she found at this place and named after me because "I like him because he's weird, just like why I like you!" And 10 minutes later, found his female version! It was even creepier than "Bill," with its serial killer eyes. I suggested she make them both into earrings, and see how many people would be unable to make eye contact with her.
      I almost bought a 1952 Popular Mechanics magazine titled "Household Kinks." Sadly, it involved money-saving things like "Pouring Your Own Driveway" (all your need is your own concrete mixer!) and not the husband dressing up as President Truman and the wife as the Newspaper Headline "DEWEY WINS!"
      She gave me a book titled Best Cat Stories, as it is nearly my birthday. Then we parted.
      I bought something at Cracker Barrel, one of those battery-operated roll-around "weasel balls," to annoy the cats. They watched it, but never attacked it. Which would be the point. It still was funny, especially when it would ramble towards them. Byron would run whenever it headed in his direction, while Killsy made sure to watch from a height. I have a feeling that, like every cat toy more expensive than a cloth mouse, it will soon be ignored.
      I think I'll have dinner (reheated blueberry pancakes), then either watch Dr Who or Milk. Umm, the movie, not the liquid.


      For the first 15 or so years I drove, I was told that oil changes should be performed every 7,000 miles. Then one day when I got one, and noticed that the signs at the oil change place said that I now was expected to get them every 3,000 miles. Wow, I thought as I rolled my eyes, did every car engine and quart of oil suddenly become 60% less effective? Or did the oil change places figure out a way to fool suckers into giving them money more than twice as often?
      I stuck with 7,000 miles. One time I kept forgetting, and changed it at 10,000 miles. And there was nothing wrong with my car, despite waiting over 3 times longer than the new recommendation said. They next added a time frame, which was "every 90 days." Shit, even with my long commute, I go at least 9 months!
      I got an oil change yesterday, but didn't glance at the little windshield sticker they give as a reminder until today. Next time they say that I should change my oil: in 15 days, or 20 miles. Whichever comes first. Probably just a mistake, but I won't be surprised if the next sticker will tell me to change my oil last week or when I pick up my keys, whichever comes first.


      Robot Scientist Becomes First Machine To Discover New Scientific Knowledge. It figured out something simple, but new, about baker's yeast. Yeah, great. Give Robot Einstein the start on the first step to Soylent Green! (kidding! Let computers do the boring grunt work, and free human minds for the creative leaps)

      Marvel.com is showing the old Spiderman series online, a week at a time. I loved it as a kid, but I haven't seen it since college. And you can probaby guess why I watched it in college. Eventually, they're going to have to show that episode near the end of the series when it just became ludicrous, such as the time a power line fell and created a giant electrical monster out of a snowman. Giant stick-armed, coal-eyed, carrot-nosed monster. With a top hat. I am not making that up. Even in college, I was never THAT stoned.
      "Is he strong? Listen, bud, he's got radioactive blood!" And one would also assume leukemia.
      Whoa, the old Spiderman cartoon is followed by some even bugshittier-insane live-action Japanese Spiderman with aliens and giant flying robots and just plain crazy Japanese shit!


4/5      New Jersey's Action Park, or as the ambulance workers nicknamed it after the endless injuries its unsafe rides caused, Traction Park:


      "Oh, it's a long, long while from May till December, and the days grow short when you reach September..."

      Classic Peanuts for 4/6/2009: Coincidence or Conspiracy?


      "Wow!" Jessica said last week. "50! That's a big event!"
      "Nah," I said. "I thought that turning 30 would be one, and it wasn't. I thought 40 would be one, but it wasn't. But I guess I do have a feeling of mortality. Not because I'm going to be 50, but because Kill Kill's going to be 10."
      And it's true. I'm statistically at the 2/3s point of my projected lifespan, and Kill Kill's only at her halfway point, but--ten years! That's a blink of an eye to a human at 50. It seems like she only got here yesterday...
      "And the days whittle down to a precious few--September!...November!"
      On Her Chair, the one with the soothing thermal blanket, she pivots an ear as I look at her. Her, so loved and so giving of love. In his beer box by my feet, Byron loudly cleans himself, as only a deaf cat would do, gives a small grunt of satisfaction, cleans a bit more, and curls to sleep. He will be six this June.
      Two days after I talked to Jessica about ageing and Killsy, she sent me a birthday card. It's a photo of a kitten popping out of a gift box. The card has a fabric bow glued to the photo; pink, indicating that she's a girl. A tiny all-white girl...I know why she picked this card.
      And today as I watch them sleep, I sing along with the September Song, as sung by the composer's widow: "And these few precious days, I'll spend with you."
      I suppose I'll see birthday wishes in the Comments. But I'm 50! Shouldn't they be birthday condolences?

      Scary Gary for 4/6/2009:


      Yeah. Birthdays suck. Growing old sucks. But growing old sure beats the only alternative.


      Did you know that The Way of Cats has a monthly newsletter? You can sign up for it on the page, but here's April's.

      Knights Templar hid the Shroud of Turin, says Vatican. Suuure they did. It's not like it's been proven a fake a thousand times over. Given the alleged dates, this is obviously an attempt to avoid the fact that the Shroud's first historical record is a bishop reporting to the Pope that its maker had confessed to it being a forgery.
      Unfortunately I don't have a screen cap thingie, that I could prove that the following is the picture next to that article, and it's titled "Easter Celebrations begin all around the world."


      Eat the chocolate bunny's ears first, then LYNCH THE NIGGER RABBIT!
      Religion is so comforting! It's never used as a justification for humanity's most reptilian instincts! Love Christ! Hate dirty Jews like Christ! I SEE NO CONTRADICTION CUZ GOD IS JUST LIKE ME! I go to Heaven, everyone not exactly like me goes to Hell! IT THAT SIMPULS!

      Know how you get "personalized" junk mail? "BILL YOUNG, YOU MAY HAVE ALREADY WON--"? Today I got a magazine called "Healthy Pet," with a wraparound cover that began with "Is Kill Kill safe from parasites?" Well, Dubya's unemployed and Madoff's in jail, so, yes. And it mentioned her unlikely name another 10 times. It makes me want to name my next pet "Poop Eater," just to see what the next mailing looks like. (Don't worry; I'd call him "Peter" for short)


      Ebert on his early years in the newspaper biz: The best damn job in the whole damn world.      Speaking of movies, I recently watched a few movies that the critics loved, especially Ebert. Synechode, NY, or however the fuck it's spelled, was not worth the time watching that it would take to find out how it was spelled. Sometimes movies hit you in the right mood and you like them (like the possibly one day of my life I was open to Tank Girl), or they hit you on the one day you'd hate them (I disliked Sideways after THE most boring Thanksgiving-with-the-family I'd ever had). Maybe I would've liked this movie's "magical realism" or "the audience MUST appreciate my GEENIUS" thing on another day, but I turned it off after 40 minutes.
      Happy-Go-Lucky was the next indie masterpiece I subjected myself to. Okay, so there's no real "plot," I can appreciate that. Life has no plot. But there was conflict, when the relentlessly upbeat protagonist met her endlessly angry driving instructor. I had a girlfriend whose father was a driving instructor. He was a nice guy off the job, but the job gave him high blood pressure, and eventually killed him from a heart attack. And the driving instructor, her opposite, the conflict in the movie...oh, he was there for about 5 minutes out of the first 70. Most of friends talk a LOT more than me, and that's perfect, as I'm very reactive in conversations. But the heroine of this just WOULDN'T STFU. She came across as an airheaded, motormouthed, babbling idiot. I began disliking her after 15 minutes. Did it get better after 70 minutes? Don't know. Gave up.
      I was further burned by the Doctor Who spinoff, Torchwood. It's not a kids' show now! We'll put in sex and swearing and more sex and now--it's a middle school kids' show! Oh fuckin huzzah!
      And so you can imagine the frisson of pure grumble I had going on when I watched Rachel's Getting Married tonight. I had me some Who, some real Who, as a backup DVD in the near-certain event that it sucked.
      And it didn't! It basically just is a record of a wedding. If there's one lesson you should learn from it: Don't go to your sister's wedding right from rehab.
      Maybe I liked it because I'm the family's black sheep. Kym was the family fuck-up, and she's still the family fuck-up, the recovering junkie who has yet to recover. I think her sister, Rachel, is the same as her, but sober. At first I felt that Kym was demanding too much attention, as "This is Rachel's day," but I eventually felt that Rachel was no different.
      I also think that I need some more time to digest this film. If your family perceives you as the black sheep or the fuck-up--or maybe only you think of yourself that way--maybe you should see it before the mass gatherings of the Easter and Passover weekends.
      At family gatherings, be like me! Always be positive and funny, but speak as little as possible!


      Today I was thinking how ridiculous it is that every morning rush hour, people race by me or tailgate 30 seconds before the traffic goes from 75MPH to 25MPH. It always happens in the same spot. Why waste gas speeding in order to waste it braking, while risking an accident? I idly thought (while my engine idled) about a WC Fields movie that featured an early comic car chase (sorry, can't find a video online), and at one point we were shown the speedometer, registering the car's then-insane maximum speed of 50. People get impatient today when I do 65, the speed limit.
      Via the inestimable Kirk, a look at A Race for Sun, Moon and Planets at the Terriffic Speed of Two Miles Per Minute! It dates from early in the age of flight, when such a speed was the fastest that anyone had ever traveled. So of course, we'd never reach the planets in our open-air, biplane spaceships! I particularly like the Dreadnought-hulled one, with flags a-flutter in the winds of airy space.
      There was an ex-president, I forget which, who, as locomotive speeds increased in the mid-1800s, opined that once they reached the ungodly velocity of 30MPH, the passengers would surely perish, as all the air would be sucked out of the train.

      I had the air sucked out of me when I got my car registration in the mail last month. I have a broken muffler, but I sure as hell don't want to put any more money than I have to into a car I plan on getting rid of in 2 years. But I had to pass emissions before I could register and legally drive it, and you can't pass with a broken muffler. Or with your Check Engine light on, so I went to Auto Zone to find out why it was lit. I wanted a fall-back second opinion before I went to a repair shop. It said that the catalytic converter was shot, which I really, really hoped was because the muffler was broken, and not because I needed to replace the only part of my car that had platinum in it.
      Of course, I could never be so lucky. The muffler was fine, but the noise came from a rotted-out tailpipe. And the "cat" was truly history. Also, the evac, whatever the living fuck that means. I took it to Caruso's, as they've done business with employees of my store for decades, and won't do any work that you don't want done. I told them that all I wanted was for it to pass emissions, and was told that it was to cost...$1200. Oh, yay.
      But I got a call that they'd replaced the cat, and the Check Engine codes had cleared. "We're not replacing the evac," he said, "but the Check Engine light could come on in a month or only a day. We'll take it to emissions [across the street] and get it passed right now." And it passed! It still cost me just under $900, but I can legally drive for another year.
      And after driving it 30 miles, the Check Engine came back on. Maybe I'll get that new Honda Fit earlier than I planned...like in a year.




--in a church bulletin


      Science news that sounds like a joke: "Dating websites will soon be able to compare partners in terms of whether the personal body odour of the other party will be pleasant to them. This has a very serious biological background.
"If the start-up company Basisnote get their way, we will soon not only be able to match looks and interests in the profile of a potential partner with our own preferences. Now even the individual smell of the other party can be recorded in the profile and then checked to see if it will be pleasant for us. Even before going on the first date."
      MySpace and FaceBook will become things of the past! Welcome, MyStink and SweatBank!



      If you read Cartoon Brew, and if you don't you should, you've already seen the short Wolf Loves Pork, and if you haven't, you should.

      Why, no, I haven't updated my page recently. Have YOU updated YOURS? NO YOU HAVEN'T!
      (accusation void to any reader who has)
      There really wasn't anything to say about Easter that couldn't be said about any family gathering, i.e., "I et me a lot of tasty foods." Although niece Cassie made me a kick-ass birthday card, using some templates downloaded from Hallmark, but composed and colored by herself, along with a reasonable likeness of Killsy that was glued to pennies so it rolled head over heels when I tipped the card. And after loading up on good food, I loaded up on good food, as Mom gave me my birthday gift of her home cooking. Then I went to work for a couple of days, and today I didn't. I sure know how to tell a riveting tale, do I not?
      If I may be allowed to freely plagiarize the next paragraph from myself in an email to the Hive-Queen Kitsplut the Adored: Last week saw the demolition of Bag Land, the Kitty Theme Park. It was a pile of bags that the kids could romp in, or use as a cushion to crash-land when chasing toys. Unfortunately, it became Pee Land, the Byron Bathroom. After clearing out 2 trash bags of debris, I found that the carpet underneath was full of litter. That wasn't going to dissuade him from peeing there. The vacuum barely got any of it out. This seemed to be because the beater bar was full of 2-foot-long light brown hair...I wonder where those came from...
      But he hasn't peed there since. Today he peed in another, worser spot than Bag Land. Who cares, that's just bags. But it's the floor by the window bookcase. He's pulled or swatted down many, many things from there over the last few years. And then pissed on them. What inspired me to raze Bag Land was a week before, when I caught him pissing over there. He's ruined books, he's ruined collectibles. I found out that he'd ruined a six-inch diameter 1960 Nixon for President button. Was it worth something? I never checked. I never planned on selling it. It was given to me when I was 12 or so, from my liberal Democratic father. And Byron ruined it. It was rusted. Rusted with URINE. It was no different than him pissing on my father's grave. I flew into a rage, made worse by the fact that you can only discipline cats verbally, and that doesn't work when they're DEAF. I get angry, he gets scared, the next day he fucking pees on something else and walks away all la-di-da.
      And this morning he peed in the same place. And, when chastised, went to the litter box to finish peeing. YOU COULD'VE CUT OUT A STEP THERE, PEE-BOY. So I dug through the closet to find what I should've found before the cleansing of Bag Land, a surgical mask. "Why do you have surgical masks, Bill?" you ask. And I answer "You've never tried to clean my condo, have you?" Safe from the dust, I dug his other litter box out. I found other things he'd destroyed, but nothing that would make me want to scream. Will he stop micturating there? I don't know. I should buy some of that citrus spray and soak every inch of carpet in it.



      Speaking of marriage...
      I've been getting robocalls from the wingnuts, despite being on the state no-call list. Interestingly, they've only come in the late afternoon, when anybody with a job that isn't third shift isn't home. Obviously, they're targetting retirees, people with time on their hands and possibly some very calcified politcal opinions. They've also been running radio ads that I've heard on the station we play at the store--the oldies station. It's from the National Organization for Marriage, or NOM, apparently because they want to nom nom nom constitutionally granted freedoms away.
      We're warned that the legislature, not happy with merely granting gays the right to marry, now wants to "FORCE the teaching of the GAY LIFESTYLE in SCHOOLS" and "FORCE religious organizations to make choices not consistent with their teachings!" It's pretty easy to guess what the latter is lying about: the bill will prevent churches from firing people based on sexual orientation. I knew that the former had to be bullshit, too. I really doubt that the Gummint wants to FORCE kids to learn their ABCs as the GayBCs (A is for AstroGlide, B is for Buttsex, C is for Cock ring). So I looked up CT SB899. Hey, guess what! Right wing religious Republicans are lying again!
      The "FORCING religious nuts to do things" is:      Wow. They don't have to marry them no faggots if the don't want to. Harsh. No, wait, not harsh--lie.
      I couldn't find a darn thing in the bill that said anything about "FORCING GAY SEX ON KIDS!!!!" so I was FORCED to look at the opponents' own site:      Oh noes! Actually, this is the entirety of what the bill says in re 46a-81r:      I added a bit. Did you catch it? (It was the last bit)
      Oh, wait, was this also a lie? Apparently not, if we continue with the anti-SB899 goon squad:      They're not reading their own paranoia into this at all. TEH GHEY is totally learned from RECRUITMENT by TEACHERS who want to work in Christian schools and be ostracized and possibly even face harrassment, beatings, and death. It's also your kids own damn fault that they CHOSE to accept the blue-eyed lifestyle after being born with blue eyes! I suppose that a FAG TEACHER told them to be born with 10 fingers and toes, too!
      Lies, lies, lies. It's all these people have. If they told the truth, no one would pay attention to them.
      I may call my legislator like they want to FORCE me to, but I'll tell them to vote in favor of SB899, and I'm not even gay! If I do, I'll be sure to tell them to vote for SB203. That's the one that bans political robocalls.
      Strange how nothing enrages the religious right as much as being told that they must obey laws based on other people's wishes, and being told they can't FORCE theirs on other people.

      In lighter news, I had some of Mom's homemade ghoulash tonight, and Byron licked the gravy off the lid in the sink. Then picked it up and placed it on the counter for easier licking. Thumbs: They do a cat body good.


      For fans of lost 80s Britpop, the B-side to Heaven 17's first single, Are Everything. I don't think that it ever made it to LP. For those of you familiar with their oeuvre (i.e., Lilly), this may be because the main instrument was acoustic guitar. But not used in the way you'd expect.
      (Warning: after ending, it may start playing a different song automatically)


      Hey, you know what I just realized happened exactly 11 years ago today?
      The InExOb.
      Eleven years already? Dang, we're ALL old!



      I was always on the Netflix 3-at-a-time "Unlimited" plan, until I realized that I never had time for 3 movies a week. So I switched to the much cheaper 2-at-a-time plan. This was when I discovered Netflix's "queue throttling." Sure, you're paying for "unlimited" DVDs, meaning that they send them as soon as you return them, except that if they thought that you did it too often, they'd pretend that they hadn't received it and would refuse to send you another. This led to them losing a class-action suit for lying about how "unlimited" their plans were.
      I stayed on the 2-at-a-time plan, as my days off were Sunday and Monday. When I started the new schedule, Sunday and Wednesday off, I realized that I could get 2 movies a week on the 1-at-a-time plan! Hey, 5 bucks a month less is 5 bucks a month!
      And, after all my DVDs being replaced on time for a year or so, but after this, the very first week...hey, guess what! My DVD didn't get back to them on time! What a coincidence! Or, just as likely, queue throttling!
      I had to wait until today to report the DVD as "mailed back but missing." Pissed off, I tried a Blockbuster account when I found out that they actually had Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! But none of the new Dr Who eps that I've been watching. After signing up for a free trial, Blockbuster told me that "Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! is Unavailable." As in "We never had this DVD." That's Ballbuster for ya.
      Before I went to work today, I logged on to Netflix and reported my "missing" DVD, then turned the computer off and commuted to work. I was told that they'd ship my next DVD on the next business day, meaning that I was screwed out of a whole week's worth of rentals.
      And when I got home, by some miracle they'd received my "lost" DVD! Exactly 5 minutes after I'd reported it as lost. WHAT ARE THE ODDS?!
      Throttling assholes! But they're pretty much the only game in town, if I want to see the movies I want to see. If this keeps happening, i guess I'll have to pay for the 2-at-a-time plan. Which is their whole idea.
      (And as I whine on my blog about my DVDs being late, half the world goes to bed starving, or lives in warzones, or has AIDS. Well--I AM an American! The most privileged and whiny narcissists on the planet, and proud of it!)


      I don't google myself, and given my amazingly common name Bill Young, why would I? I just checked, and it's down to a mere 343,000 hits. So instead I googled "splut."      That is so disgusting a definition of a word someone else made up that it's not even funny! And also a good description of my kitchen floor, actually.
      It goes on in that "Oh please God make me the next Dave Barry!" local columnist and/or blogger way, but it actually is pretty funny.



      It's already been a year since the last Vernon Historical Society used book sale? I checked, and yes, it has.
      My $3.25 bought The Return of Pogo, a collection from 1965; Cat Miracles and A Celebration of Cats, which are both about the raising of yams; and The Book of Lists: The 90s Edition. I actually found more exciting stuff on the last day of the sale last year, so in a week I'll go again.
      It's always entertaining to see the misfiled books. Or were they? Multiple copies of the entire Left Behind series were in science fiction, which is completely wrong. There's no science in those things! And they were with the copies of Chariots of the Gods? and Dianetics with them. Where's the fantasy section? Or the Utterly Rank and Steaming Pile of Bullshit one?


      HIM: Where are the kosher wines?
      ME, pointing: All the way in the back.
      HIM: All the way in the back?
      ME, pointing: All the way in the back.
      HIM: All the way in the back?
      ME, sighing: All the way in the back.
      HIM: In the back? All the way?


      Okay, this falls in the "rather amusing" category instead of the "ROTFL" category, but I think that We Who Comment have certainly read enough Bad Fanfic (usually involving fox-furred fuckbots) to appreciate Solomon Stone Meets Anne Frank in: Skateboard for Hitler!

      And how pathetic are you when you link to Something Awful? Exactly as pathetic as me today!
       A Nintendo game based on the hypnotically bizarre but incredibly terrible movie Cool World. If you watch the You Tubey thing at the end of the article, you'll see that it really does truly capture the movie's dreamlike, frustrating WTFness. Just as if you were watching the film, the narrator gets angrier and angier at the pointless absurdity-for-its-own-sake as it goes on. And on and on.
      Speaking of pointless absurdity, Tea Party Fashions is downright hi-larious.


      Today's religious weirdness: "The outbreak of swine flu should be renamed "Mexican" influenza in deference to Muslim and Jewish sensitivities over pork, said an Israeli health official Monday."
      Umm, what? You think that pigs are bad, but you're angry that something named after pigs is bad?
      Before "Freedom Fries," the absolute nadir of American retardation in nearly a century, during World War One sauerkraut was angrily renamed "Liberty Cabbage," and can you guess what rubella, aka "German measles," was renamed? LIBERTY MEASLES. If we loved Liberty so much, why rename something that kills babies after it? "Oh, junior didn't die from whooping cough! He died from Shrieking Psychotic Axe Murderer Abe Lincoln Cough!"
      Do Israelis hate Mexicans more than they hate pigs? Hey, I got it! We'll name it after something they like! Let's call it the Jew Flu!! It even rhymes! And we'll call "mental retardation" "Our Bronze Age ancestors 3,000 years ago were too fucking stupid to cook their fucking pig meat long enough, so they banned it FOREVER" syndrome! Because giving a new name to "swine flu" will make it SO LESS FATAL.
      Religion: Frequently fatal to brain cells.


      Geocities will be razed to the ground. Seriously, does the old girl use up that much bandwidth?
      Well, I know how I'm spending my summer vacation: migrating 12 year old files.


      Simultaneously the most depressing and most uplifting story you'll read today, "Builders working near the site of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp have found a message in a bottle written by prisoners". Depressing for the reason that burying the message in a concrete wall was the only way these young men could show that they ever existed. And uplifting because they knew that someday the walls of Auschwitz would be torn down.

      Random updates on my event-free life! It's like Twitter, but with at least 141 characters.
      The new work schedule hasn't been friendly to my social calendar. I can realistically only do things during Sunday and Wednesday during the day with Jessica, and theoretically Tuesday or Friday nights with Kev and Meg. I put the theory to the test yesterday when I visited the latter. I didn't know if at 930PM my brain would go into cold shutdown.
      But it worked out fine. Meg was at some puppy playdate or such with Stella and Penny, so Kev and I both had the C-3 (teriyaki sticks and chicken fingers) from Panda Palace with some free beer I got as samples at work. We tried to watch Waltzing with Bashir, which is supposed to be excellent, if depressing, but Kev's copy had 2 sets of subtitles unreadably layered over each other. He had other choices, but I passed on Paul Blart, Mall Cop and West Side Story, which Kevin is obsessed with, and he's not even gay. We watched Rocknrolla, as I'm always up for a good British gangster movie. They always have lots of interesting characters, crazy non-gory violence, and convoluted plots that come together at the end. After half an hour, Meg came home and I was mauled by the dogs. It isn't easy to hold off 2 dogs while keeping a beer in the air so it doesn't get spilled, and Penny slurped me a lot while Stella either barked "I LOVE YOU, MAN!" or "THE THROAT! I WILL HAVE HIS THROAT!" as it was hard to tell.
      I recommend the movie, although you may need a group discussion afterwards to explain who caused the Maguffin to wind up in a certain person's hands at the end.
      After a 5-day heat wave of record highs in the upper 80s to low 90s, my day off was only in the low 60s. I went hiking in the state park anyway. I came across a reasonably-sized snake drinking from a puddle, who gave me a look that said "Don't tread on me, and we'll both be fine." I stared at it a while, then thought "I wouldn't give this critter a second glance if I lived where seeing snakes wasn't unusual," turned and saw the bones of the lower spine, coccyx and upper left hind leg of a pretty large animal. Which really was unusual. And where was the rest of the skeleton? Nowhere to be seen. A faun taken down by coyotes, with one big chunk dragged here by a pack member to devour in private?
      Cars and coyotes, that's why my cats stay indoors. And crazy neighbors who try to run them over, as I'm sure you recall.
      Speaking of neighbors, once home I saw a mother with 2 daughters, 3 and 4 years old maybe, who was talking into a cellphone while screaming at her kids. The word "fuck" was used frequently. Always a sign of good parenting. Also "SIT!" said to her children with the same emphasis that British TV dog trainer always used. I guess she was taking them walkies. I wanted to walk Mommy over to the nearest pack of coyotes.

      Yes, I know you've been saying, "Bill, where is UpChuck?" Also, "And may it please never come back?"
      Surprise on YOU! On your HEAD! With my FEET! He's baaack!


      "Chucky the Bear says 'Only you can prevent forest fires! By PAVING THEM OVER!' Then there's nothing there to burn!"


      "Obama's bailouts are NOTHING like Bush's! HUSSEIN Obama's are like Communism and the nightmare dystopia that is the hell on earth called SWEDEN! Or something! BIG GOV'T is nothing Bush ever tried! But don't say that over the phone, the NSA has it wiretapped."


      "Even you, fish amazingly floating in the air! Or white children, who are more dismayed by a nigger walking on you than you are while DROWNING, what with the BEING UNDERWATER. I AM CHUCK, and my visual metaphors MAKE NO SENSE. KEEP ON CHUCKIN'!"
      I have no idea what it means either. Unless it's about the ENORMOUS DEFICIT!! Obama's passing on to Our Children, as Bush took Clinton's surplus and turned it into--Oh, wait, that doesn't make any sense! Why would right-wingers complain about this now and not after 8 years of the worst deficits in history? It'd like they're in denial or something! It'd be like Charles Manson telling his cellmate not to kill flies! Then going "AHHH-HAHAHAHHAHHAA!!" and eating him alive.


      Ooo-kay. Somali pirates are 11-year-old niggers. "Well, duh, any deranged shit-for-brains knows THAT! Just like the tiny, filthy darkies with their rap music that terrify me at the 7-11 I never go to because of all the NEGROS that shop there! I'll show them! I'll carry a big flag that says 'I'm a paranoid lazyass redneck who got GUNS' wherever I go! That'll stop them from boarding the ships of the US Cheeto fleet! In fact, I'll just take over their shitty little boat and kill me them kids! Hey, what's that ship with the flag that says 'US NAVY SEALS'? COMMIES, most likely, or even the vicious SWEDES! Hey, my gallant crew of dumbasses, why'd y'all just crap your pants?"
      KABOOM! splat!
      "HAW HAW! Y'all shot me in the HEAD! I'm okey-dokey! It's not like I ever done used any part of it 'cept my MOUTH!"


      Panel 1: "Rice? She's a nigger too! No wonder they agree. Black thing, like 40 ouncers, fried chicken, prostitution, crack, and guns. Guns that AREN'T OWNED BY WHITE PEOPLE! Why ain't Obammer done nuthin' about THAT?"
      P2: "HUSSEIN bowed to th' Saudi! Dubya showed that you should plant a big wet one on his cheek, then walk around the Rose Garden holdin' his hand, just like a REAL TEXAS MAN! Oh, wait! My Republican brain just deleted that fact. Rumsfeld shook hands with Saddam when he was gassin' them Kurds. Wait--but that means--BRAIN IS DELETING!"
      P3: "DON'T BASH BUSH! We ain't bashing Obama over nothing AT ALL! See previous cartoons!"
      P4: "YEAH! What a dictator-kissing, hand-holding asshole! Now, Dubya, he LOVED political prisoners and fine dictators like that Uzbekistan and Pakistan guys...Umm...BRAIN DELETING! BRAIN DELETING!"
      P5: "HOT DOG! HUSSEIN gonna get all GAY MARRIED in a BATHHOUSE to whoever that guy with the world's worst unibrow is, and that damn FURRIN lookin' feller's all 'Kissy-kissy' already! That is SO HOTT--umm, I mean, totally grosses me out. No, I only got my hand down my pants cuz my weiner itches. And itches. And ITCHES!! OH GAWD! SCRATCH SCRATCH SCRATCH!!!"
      P6: "OH NO! Now vicious dictators know that we TORTURE people by WATERBOARDING! THAT WAS A SECRET THEY NEVER KNEW! Now they can use it on AMURCANS, which was the whole reason we FUCKING BANNED TORTURE 60 YEARS AGO! And executed the Japanese war criminals who waterboarded American prisoners!
      "Mmm...torture! So itchy, so really, really itchy..."


      My new job title means more work, so it was pretty cool to get that pay raise today. A dollar an hour, but, hey, more than I expected in this faltering economy. $40 a week helps a lot when you're on my low rung of the economic ladder.

      Matt Bors has a cartoon about the banking crisis that's funny, accurate, and Star Warsy.
      If that sounds both familiar and unfamiliar, it's beause, umm, I posted it last month with a broken link.


      As I left the bank with the change order today, my eye was caught by the flashing screen of the ATM. I wish that I'd had a camera, so that I could prove that it had a sheet of paper taped to it that said, and I quote:

       "Fuck!" said the Time Travelling ATM Repairperson, "this always happens on MY shift!" He punched a few buttons on his toolbelt, and left a note that said:


      Saturdays are the only day that I work evenings, and thus the only day that I don't worry about my 20-mile commute. Rather than having to keep a constant eye on every car around me, today I just breezed in. I remember when all my commutes were like this, I thought, quick and easy and predictable. Like, what is with the deal now where it takes me either 3 minutes to drive the first 1.5 miles after I get off the highway, or it takes me up to 10 minutes, completely at random? I asked myself as I got off the highway.
      Naturally, with this thought I had somehow willed into existence a big backup. There's a cemetary on this road and it's a Saturday, so it had to be a funeral procession. Everybody has to give a funeral procession the right of way, and that always slows things to a crawl. But I was wrong!
      This was an extra slow crawl. Because there were two funeral processions, each going in opposite directions to different cemetaries. Who gets the right of way then? As far as I could tell, the one going to the cemetary farthest away. Or the one that doesn't have a chartered tour bus in the procession. I've been stuck watching a lot of processions in the last 6 years, but that was a new one. "Grandpa's dead...ROAD TRIP! WOOOO! Who's got the keg?"
      Once past all of that, it was clear driving to--No, just yards past the funeral jam-up there was a broken-down pickup truck blocking one lane. I had a quicker commute during Friday's morning rush hour.


      6 People With Amazing Abilities (That Are Totally Useless), such as Bobby Badfingers. You might not think that one could build a multimedia empire on the ability to snap your fingers real quick, but Bobby proves you right. You can read the article first, or watch this YouTube video on his kid friendly martial art that really doesn't involve any finger snapping. The live action stuff is just embarassing, but wait until the "cartoon" starts. Possibly he defeats his opponents by making their jaws drop so fast in horrified disbelief that they snap clean off. It makes Super Green Beret look like a cultural diversity awareness seminar. Except that it doesn't have the excuse of being made over 40 years ago.

      I went to the last day of the local book sale today, when everything is half price. For half price, I bought 3 books, which were half the price they used to be. Did I mention that everything was half price? Because every halfwit who was working there made sure to tell me, twice.
      I got an anthology called Cat Crimes, which was missing its dust jacket so I have no idea why it's titled that. I thought that maybe it was mystery stories involving cats, but on closer inspection I'd say not. Also The Big Book of National Insults: 1001 Xenophobic Quips and Quotes, although it doesn't look as bad as that Bobby Badfingers video. And Uncle John's Bathroom Reader Plunges Into History, as I have a couple of those and they're fun in the "interesting facts you'll never use" way.
      On the very brief drive home, I passed a woman walking her 2 Shetland ponies. Imagine the baggies she must need to clean up after them.


      George Harrison: Damn good forger, and even better human being.


      I have a free movie ticket left, and was wondering whether to use it for Star Trek or Pixar's new movie Up--Hey, there's a free screening--maybe the only one in America!--of Up! And it's in CONNECTICUT! In HARTFORD, 20 minutes from here! At the WADSWORTH ATHENEUM, which I actually know how to get to! On SATURDAY at TWO!
      AUUUGHHH!!! (writhes around shrieking on floor)
      Hey, ShamWOW! really does pick up 10 times its weight in flying spittle...


      Go gentle into that good night, Roger Ebert's musings on mortality:


      Cracked's Star Trek's 6 Most Ridiculous Alien Races.
      What, only six? For the first time, I felt compelled to comment, as I only do that over very important shit:


I think the best Yogi Berra quote is one that's not at all a non sequitur, but actually 100% true: "There are some people who, if they don't already know, you can't tell 'em."

      I'm planning on seeing that "Star Travel" movie with Dr Spock and Captain Kirk Israel and "Boner" McHorny that all the kids are on about tomorrow. It sounds pretty good, and, in fact, it could've been worse. (The ones I get are funny; the couple that I don't seem comic book related)

      Speaking of comic books, DC's Hall of Silver Age Elseworlds First Pages is funny, except for the few that aren't. The first one is the best.


      Saw me the Star Trek today. Pretty good crowd for a weekday matinee.
      Pretty good movie, too. I don't have any deep thoughts about it, as the movie had no deep thoughts. It was a straight-forward action movie, although by no means was it dumb (unlike the trailers for Transformers and GI Joe sure looked). It cleverly had its canon and ate it too--when the phrase "alternate reality" was used, it clearly meant that this was the alternate one. Although I suppose for everything from TNG on to exist, there would have to be 2 timelines already; this one, and the one where Spock arrived on time.
      They did a remarkable job of casting both people who looked like the TOS actors, and gave them a script where they acted as you'd think the younger versions of them would. There was plenty of humor that worked, and while you could watch this and understand it without getting the many references to the series and films, they were nice injokes to the fans. We get to see the Kobyashi Maru test, and Kirk is eating an apple, something meaningless to anyone who hadn't seen Wrath of Khan. When a dangerous away mission is required, one of the crewmembers is wearing a red suit...d'ya already know if he'll be in the next movie?
      Of course, it's mainly Kirk and Spock, but I liked that all the characters got not just screen time, but did things. Sulu kicks ass and saves Kirk for once, rather than simply announcing the warp speed, Chekov is some tech savant (this is an alternate reality, remember), and Uhuru does more than answer the phone. Okay, she strips to her underwear. While Nichelle Nichols was my first exposure to the idea that sexiness extends across all races, really, they didn't have Scotty in his jammies. Scotty was played by Simon Pegg, the only name I recognized in the cast besides you know, that guy, and Winona Ryder (playing Spock's MOM! Feel old yet?)
      The science in this fiction is laughable. Red matter, space drill, sure, okay. But two M-class planets as close to each other as the Earth is to the Moon? Sorry, no. Supernova that will blow up the entire galaxy? And can reach planets outside its own system within apparent days? Come on. Also, there's a bit with the transporter that doesn't seem to understand what "terminal velocity" means. And those defects could've been fixed with a brief special effect and some dialogue.
      But it's a fun action picture. I recommend it. Big as the explodey-splodes are, you could watch this comfortably at home on DVD, if you care to wait that long.

      SPOCK: Captain, we've been orbiting this planet--
      CAPTAIN BILL SPLUTNER: Well, obviously, if we weren't, we'd be crashing into it. SULU! KEEP ORBITING!
      SULU (with a sigh, points at controls): See the "Orbit" button? I put a brick on it.
      SPOCK: But we've been orbiting the same planet for three years.
      BILL: What? It's a good planet! Chekov! Perhaps Doctor Spock doesn't understand why we orbit this planet! Explain it to him, you're good with words, being Russia's greatest playwright and photon torpedo launcher 'n' stuff! Also try to say the word "vessel," I love when you do that.
      CHEKOV (rubbing eyes and sighing): It's the planet of cats that brew beer and have internet.
      BILL: SEE, Spock? And we've never violated the Prime Directive! Besides ordering their beer and their kittens, oh so CUTE are the kittens! Aren't you, Khanny boy? Whooza good boy, huh, whooza good boy?
      UHURA (brushing 3 kittens off her keyboard): Captain! Romulans are hailing us!
      BILL: ON SCREEN! Maybe they have some of their ale.
       BILL: Well...okay. I wasn't using Earth anyway.
      ROMULAN: What? Ummm...THIS PLANET! It's here, might as well blow it up!
      ROMULAN: In my bitter vengeance, I care not for your k--
      ROMULAN: Really? I mean--I WILL DESTROY THIS PLANET! Unless--you give me--SPOCK!
      BILL: "Spock"? Who is this Spock you speak of? I don't know any Spock! Oh, wait--there he is, hiding under the Science Officer console.
      SPOCK (quietly): May you die soon and pustulate.
      ROMULAN: Beam him over! NOW! Or I will--
      BILL: Blow up my planet, Christ, heard you the first ten times. Hey, do you also want some kittens? We started with only 4, but now there's more kittens than there are crewmembers. Apparently SOMEone doesn't know how to fix them.
      BONES: Dammit, Bill, I'm a doctor, not Bob Barker!
      BILL: Actually, you're not a doctor, you just suck. So, mind if we throw a few kittens in? Like, two or three hundred?
      ROMULAN: Could you beam them directly to our kitchen? So that we may feed on them--I mean--FEED--THEM?
      BILL: Umm, yeah, right. How about...we beam a few of our FunSize Snack kittens right to your bridge?
      ROMULAN: Dude! You're doing a bro a solid. (another Romulan whispers in his pointy ear) Oh, right. Also beam over SPOCK!
      BILL: Sure, right away! Hey, Spock--Spock?
      SPOCK: I am not Spock.
      BILL: Wow. Nice goatee.
      SPOCK: I am EVIL SPOCK! If you send me over, you will only make everything MORE EVILER!
      BILL: Did you draw that goatee with a Sharpie?
      SPOCK: This is the future! There are no Sharpies!
      BILL: But the film established that there is still a Nokia.
      SPOCK (drinking a Pepsi and eating Fritos): I hadn't noticed.
      ROMULAN: Look, can you get a move on? I've got to destroy a lot of planets today!
      BILL (getting out of the captain's chair to stand dramatically): Spock, I have to beam you aboard Mr "I went drunk to the tattoo place" Romulan's ship. Go to, ahh, Loading Bay 5.
      SPOCK: The one with all the--
      BILL: YES. The one with all the kittens. Is that the one where they've been covered in BBQ sauce?
      SPOCK (raises eyebrow): Captain, I believe that that's the one where they've been seasoned to perfection. Teryaki kittens, honey-basted kittens, kittens vindaloo--
      BILL: Spock, go to Loading Bay 5 and beam it all aboard. Let me know when you're ready.
      SPOCK (ducks under console again) I'm in Loading Bay 5. I'm ready, Captain--I am ready to meet my fate.
      ROMULAN: And I'M ready to FATE my EAT! Oh, I so got the alien munchies, I can't wait! I may even eat Spock! With a SPORK, for ironic effect!
      BILL: Scotty, beam the contents of Loading Bay 5 to the Romulan's bridge.
      (transporter effect) WHUMP!!
      SCOTTY: Cap'n, I dinna think you'd ever empty Loading Bay 5! Seriously, why dinnna ya dump three years worth of used cat litter until now?
      (ROMULAN screams, gets doodies in his face, Romulan ship explodes)
      BILL: Just lazy, I guess. Mr Sulu?
      SULU: Yes, Captain?
      BILL: Orbit another three years!
      (everyone groans)
      BILL: Good boy, Khanny! (removes kitten from the captain's chair and sits dramatically back down)
      BILL (jumps up with kitten vomit on the seat of his pants): KHAAAAAAN!!!!


      Ebert: Irving! Brang 'em on!
      It's not the deep philosophical thinking from the last post of his that I linked to. It's a remembrance from a life that he thinks will be soon over, a funny sketch of a really eccentric character who should've been on the fringes of movies, but inserted himself right into the middle and floated to the top.



      Another Way of Cats article inspired by my cats, Cats Who Are Exiled. Let's see if you guess who was the inspiration:      Yes, you got it right the first time! (I've linked to the comment thread that led to this before, but here it is again).
      I wrote to one PetFinder shelter a week ago about an orange tabby kitten, but I never received a response, and the listing was gone a couple of days ago. I asked a coworker's wife who works in a vet office that does rescues if she had any. She didn't have the details, but there were 2 newborns just brought in. I thought that Byron's mom was a bad mother, abandoning him at 2 weeks to die just because he's nearly deaf, but these kittens were saved from a mother who was killing her litter. I decided, y'know, the reason Byron was never properly socialized with cats is because he didn't see another one from 2 weeks until the day before he moved in with Killsy, and kittens who were maimed by their mom might end up with issues themselves. Plus, I really want the kitten to come home over my vacation in 2 weeks. Waiting for an orange tabby kitten to turn up is very unlikely before then.
      So back to PetFinder. And, while not tabbies, Ginger and Taffy have at least some orange. So I sent out another email. At least this time my chances of getting one is doubled, and one's all I want. I don't want 2 little brothers ignoring Byron the way Killsy sometimes does.
      But "Ginger" and "Taffy"? Yuck, who named them, the Nestle Corporation? D.J. will be the name!


      Response from PetFinder, emphasis added:      *sigh* No, you won't be in touch with me.
      Disheartening. I also have a vacation in September, so maybe I should wait to adopt then.
      And as soon as I stopped typing that and began pacing the room sadly, the phone rang.
      The adoption did not go through!!
      I have a visit with Ginger tomorrow! ENHEARTENING!

      I don't think that I ever told you about my solving of one of life's greatest mysteries, so when I found an excuse to explain it on Strange Maps, on a world map made of shoes, I went for it.


      What a perfect storm of unexpected expenses, all hitting at the same time. $900 extra on my card to pay for the work done on my car, my car insurance premium is due, Blockbuster hit me with a $10 fee for the "free" trial of their fake Netflix that I cancelled without even using (and said that they'd credit me for, and didn't, so I sicced Discover on them. I got the credit, but it appears in a different billing cycle), my vacation coming at the same time all that has to be paid (I'm a pennypincher 50 weeks a year, but damned if I'm not going to splurge a bit on my vacation), and now, on top of all that, another $75!
      In pet adoption fees!!!!




      Meet D.J.!!!
      He doesn't come home until after work the day I begin vacation. He is incredibly small for 9 weeks, it seems to me, although it has been a while since I had a wee one (as his foster mom called him. I asked "What part of Scotland are you from?" but it turns out she's from Northern Ireland, and the accents are similar). He was feisty, running around and hiding and running back out (hence only two pictures), but he was also willing to be held and petted. He comes home mere minutes after my vacation starts on 6/2. CAN NOT WAIT but must, so that the introductions go smoothly.
      I was too excited and happy to remember to wash my hands before leaving. Killsy never forgave me for coming home with Jessica's cat Majoriam's scent on me, acting as if I had lipstick on my collar. She's sniffed my hands ever since, even though it happened once about 8 years ago. She meowed for pets as soon as I came home, so I thought "Scratch her and her smell will cover up DJ's." She pivoted and sniffed me and hissed. Not a surprise, as I expect her reaction to him to be "OH GOD not another one!" I held my hand up to Byron, who sniffed and sniffed and wasn't bothered at all--in fact, he went right back to sleep. I have a feeling that his reaction to the little brother will be "WOW COOL can we have playtimez naow?!"
      I hope that Deej realizes that he's got to have an incredibly, indelibly cute photo taken very soon after moving in, if he hopes to match Those Two Famous Photos of Killsy and Byron.


      In this turbulent economy, nothing is more important than holding on to a job. Courtesy of one of my coworkers, here's a list of sure-fire ways to keep getting a paycheck!      See how easy it is to keep your job? Simply memorize the above list, and then do the complete opposite!


      Iams has a site called The Daily Cat, which isn't remotely daily. Or even that useful; there's more information in a sentence on Way of Cats than there is in a week of the Iams blog. I check it once a week anyway, and today was given this serving of cat doody: Miracle Cat Cure.
      If your bullshit detector didn't start screaming when you heard that title, it's because you don't have one. What's it about? Cat acupuncture. I left the following comment, which I reproduce here as I'm sure it will never appear on the site:      I wrote that in anger, so I regret posting it. "The Great Pyramid at Giza" really should've been "the Bermuda Triangle," as the Pyramids are something that actually do exist.

      Another thing I do weekly is read through all the political cartoons on GoComics. I've noticed that liberal cartoonists make fun of Democrats about 20% of the time, while right-wingers make fun of Republicans 1% of the time, and only when they're "not batshit insane ENOUGH! GRR, must chew carpet!!" And that, while the news is the news and everybody gets it at the same time, liberals cover whatever they feel like, while wrong-wingers seem to have...hmm, it's like they were handed a list of Approved Talking Points.
      Also, the wingnuts really have found nothing to work with regarding Obama, so they all leap on the same trivial shit. Like


      Oh, and I don't call it "HypocrAsay" for nothing! The last 8 years never happened! Obama bowed politely, as he would to the Japanese prime minister, to the scumbag Saudis when he should've kneed the asshole in the ding dongs, but it was Dubya that gave him big wet smoochums and then walked around the Rose Garden holding the prince's hand. BUT THAT NEVER HAPPENED! Also, the "Right to Life," as always, only reaches to those before birth. Once they're born, kill em all and let Gourd sort it out! Death penalty good, gun control bad, America's infant mortality the worst in the developed world AWESOME, war based on lies that killed thousands of Americans and a million Iraqis, THAT'S TEH RITES TO LIFES RESPECKS! Seriously, the Vatican didn't fucking care about his degree, and Notre Dame has had plenty of pro-choice speakers. Why is this news? Because Chuckie and his mentally defective brethren have nothing substantive to say.
      Seriously. I'm giving up on UpChuck. I expected total insanity from this brainless toad during the Obama years, and this old tripe is what he gives me? I need some MEAT here, Chucklehead!


      See what I mean? No meat, just this talking point that PELOSI KNEW ABOUT TORTURE! coming from the same amoral hypocrites who've spent 6 years pretending that waterboarding wasn't torture. Funny, isn't it, that the Pelosi "controversy" erupted at the precise moment that it was announced that the torture was ordered by Cheney to force false confessions that Iraq was a threat to America, justifying the invasion? Which lie was worse? If Pelosi lied, how many people died? (answer: none, the same amount who were killed by the blow job Clinton got that the right impeached him over, and 12 years later is still obsessed with) You know who cares about this? People who don't care about anything but useless, pointless, meaningless shit, that's who. People who also magically believe that the CIA has never lied about overthrowing democratically-elected South American governments, Iran Contra, foreign assassinations, arming the Taliban, training and funding fucking bin Laden, the ENTIRE LEAD UP TO THE IRAQ WAR, always under orders from Republican presidents anything ever!
      MEAT, ground-Chuck-for-brains, I want MEAT!


      I didn't mean meat LITERALLY!
      "Missed by the Liberal Media"? Huh, I heard about it on NPR's 3-minute headline news summary yesterday. I would think that Chunks would consider them the epitome of the "liberal media."
      In fact, this cartoon is a lie--the bill (ludicrously tacked onto the credit card reform bill) allows concealed handguns in parks. Remember when Old Faithful pulled an Uzi on some guys and gunned them down, and if some tourist had only carried 4 concealed Glocks, it could've been averted? Or when Yogi Bear went berserk with his legally-bought-at-a-gun show AR-15, and killed dozens for their pic-a-nic baskets? Well, then I guess that you don't watch the news shows playing in my head! OBVIOUSLY, the more guns there are, the LESS gun violence there'll be! If there were only two cars in the country, they'd crash into each other every day! When there's hundreds of millions, the accident rate will be reduced to ZERO!
      Holy shit, that's a lot of meat! Apparently concealed handguns are for hunting. In national parks, which I'm SO SURE is legal. What a brave hunter, bringing down the fearsome porcupine, the vicious moo-cow, the man-eating bunny rabbit, the bloodthirsty...WTF is that, a long-tailed gerbil? Or Pikachu? And the neighbor's yappy dog.
      Note the Happy Faces on all the slaughtered animals, except the murdered Democratic donkey. Oh, those libs are never satisfied!
      Hey, if a liberal cartoonist showed Rush Dimbulb's head mounted on a wall, do you think Chuck might shit his adult diapers screaming about the "terrorists on the far left"? Of course he would. It's not called HypocrAsay for nothing!



      I've mentioned Young's Law of the Internet before. If a regularly updating site stops regularly updating, the likelihood of it never updating again goes up by 33% a month. After 2 months, it goes up to a 66% chance of never updating, and after 3, 99%. After 4, it hits 99.9999%, but if there's still an actual website that someone's paying for, it will never hit 100%.
      After finding out the awesome news that DJ will soon rampage through our lives, I remembered the only "cat pic of the day" site that had ever run those Two Famous Photos of kittens Kill Kill and Byron. It stopped updating two YEARS ago. But It was still there; if you clicked the link, there was an eternally dead ghost site, so I never deleted it. On a whim, I checked it 3 days ago.
      Kitten Picture is back! When did it decide to cast off the chains of eternal slumber and rise from the dead, after lo these lengths of years?
      They started regularly posting again on Monday. The day I met DJ.
      It's literally "Kitten Picture" now, with no commentary on the lil' ones. But, well, you know...KITTENS!!! Who doesn't a little more kitten in their day?

      And who hasn't said "What a funny, cheezy animated gif!" since...Okay, like a decade ago. But Kirk has a funny, cheezy animated gif!


      Okay, Page-A-Day Calendars, I call foul. As has happened a million times--especially at middle schools--no doubt some students took the plastic letters on the outside board and tipped the F into the I, making it look like an A. I'm not going to even bother finding an example on Google Images, as I'm sure there are pages and pages. That's not "one of the stupidest things ever said," it's just a dumb prank. If the sign had been "Fatal Exam" it might count. NO, I am not cranky and tired after a grueling and understaffed Memorial Day buying frenzy okay I am, I think I'll go to bed good night love ya.




      Via Zefiel in the comments: "Hahaha, It was the very first result in google images":


      The big summer movie will be "Drag Me To the Multiplex 1 2 3 � A Blockbuster." Actually, it's all the big summer movies...


      I went to a barbecue yesterday. No cocks were involved.

      Beforehand, a huge spring thunderstorm barreled through. Killsy used to be terrified of these, hiding under the bed at the first rumble and not reappearing until exactly 20 minutes after the last (not 18 minutes, not 22 minutes...). I'd stand by the bed and calmly reassure her that she was right to be scared, but they're just "booms," booms can't hurt you, good girl, come out, it's safe, I'm here! After 2 years, she became brave enough to sit under whatever chair I was in. If a t-storm happened when I wasn't home, she'd still hide for 20 minutes. Once Byron moved in, she saw that neither he nor I was scared, so she decided she was safe (not knowing that Bigfoot wasn't scared because he didn't hear the booms). Now she sleeps through the storms.
      ...Until it was right overhead, with a second between the flash and the thunder. I think what really worried her was that I turned the computer off. She went under the chair, to show that she wasn't that scared. The thunder boomed so loud that Byron heard it. I think he did, anyway; he was startled, and for 10 minutes his eyes bugged out of his head as his ears swiveled all around. He doesn't hear much, so it must be astonishing to him when he does.
      All the wind must've stirred up the pollen, since I went into one of my sneezing jags. I sneeze violently, loud and high-pitched, and say "Sorry, honey!" to Kllsy, then start again. And Byron heard that too! In 6 years, he's never reacted to my sneezes. Did I hit that limited frequency he hears on, or is his hearing getting slightly better?

      The rain ended before I went to Kev and Meg's. We had barbecued burgers and whole small potatoes and it was most excellent. Meg went to walk the dogs, as she's learned not to trust our movie selections. Both choices were mine, downloaded in hi-def by Kev: Faster, Pusscat! Kill! Kill! which I've wanted to see for about 30 years, but especially in the last 10; and Sita Sings the Blues, an animated film that I tried watching online, but it kept pausing to buffer. I didn't have a preference, but Kev didn't either, so I chose Sita. Kev sent it from his computer to his TiVo, explaining that it would take about 5 minutes to get started. Instead, we got a recreation of my online experience--we'd have to stop every 10 or 15 minutes for 5 minutes as it caught up. Not the optimal viewing experience.
      Except that it was amazing! I've never seen anything like this movie, which was created by one woman over 5 years on her home computer. It's the parallel stories of Sita from Hindu mythology and the animator's life, both with husbands who fall into the "douchebag" category, and based on 80 year old pop songs. There were five extremely different animation styles, each for a different aspect of the 2 stories. If you like animation at all, and movies that tell very engaging stories in a new way, just find this. Watch it online, if you can, but it's in Netflix's "Save" queue also. It's funny and smart and touching, and the animation is just--well, I said "I've never seen anything like this movie" already, and I've seen a lot of strange movies and weird animation, but that's the truth. But the story's not strange or weird, it's a human story we all can relate to. And there are cats.
      Why is it only available as a download or stream? It cost animator Nina $20K to make the movie by herself. The music of Annette Hanshaw was the inspiration for the movie and is integral to it. Her songs are 80 years old and in the public domain--but the compositions, all by people who are also extremely dead, aren't. So the goddamn rights holders wanted $20K per song in royalties that go to no one even born when they were recorded or written. A fitting tribute in a movie about DOUCHEBAGS. A smart record company exec would think "We haven't made a cent off of Hanshaw's corpse for almost a century. The movie soundtrack could lead to her rediscovery!" A greedy record company exec would think "Yeah, but let's bleed this stone dry first!" And if they released a soundtrack of this mix of 1929 pop and Indian music, I'd buy it even if it was a double CD. At least I would if they'd waived the $220,000 they wanted upfront. If Sita becomes the viral hit it's looking to be and then they released it--well, half the money would have to go to Nina P--
      HOLY SHIT! "Nina Paley"?! All through the "Modern World" animation, I kept thinking "This looks like that comic that turns up in Funny Times!" BECAUSE IT IS.
      Only a couple of comics here. The strip got cancelled! WTF kinda raw deal is ALL of this?!
      WATCH THE MOVIE! it is AMAZING. And SUBSCRIBE TO FUNNY TIMES! it is funny. And Nina Paley ROX!


      Normally, I'd go to the state park on a Wednesday, but it was going to rain all day (note: didn't, at all), so I did the grocery shopping. With my new schedule, I get out Mondays at 3, and since I drive past all the places I shop on the way home, I do my shopping then to save money on gas. Since I get an average of 34mpg and the round trip to the grocery store is 4.4 miles, it's not saving me much. Since I went to Dollar Tree today and dropped $50, it's even less.
      Wow, fifty bucks at a dollar store! Seems impossible. Most dollar stores are junk made in China's prisons, but Dollar Tree is like BIG!Lots, and carries lots of brand name cloesouts. It's all a matter of timing. I bought salty snacks the last time I was there, and there were no sweet snacks, unless one is a huge fan of corn syrup and "chocolatey" or "chocolate flavored" or "chocolate extruded petroleum byproducts" that contain some disgustingly bad simulation of cocoa. But they must've just had their Nestle shipment come in, and there were Kit Kats, Reese's, 100 Grands, the best candies EVAR Dark Raisinets and Whoppers, and, according to my receipt, "3 Muskateens." I really hope that they don't taste like musky teenagers. MUSKY TEEN PICS HERE!! ha ha I just got myself about a hundred extra hits a month from pervs on Google!
      One downside to shopping after work is that it's after work. I want to be home with the midgets, so I blast through the aisles as fast as I can, the better to get out quicker. On a day off, I can take a little more time to poke around. I went down the toy aisle thinking "It's gonna happen someday..." and today was that day! SPEED RACER Hot Wheels, a mere 4 bits! When the grocery store had them, I knew that they'd quickly go from full price to 25% off, then 50% off (which is when I bought 5), and then to 75% off, except they didn't, they simply disappeared. I had a good idea where they'd eventually resurface. I was glad to see that they had ones I didn't own, and then startled to see that they had ones I didn't know existed. A lot were the same cars with "desert" colors or "race damage," which thankfully did not mean that the cars were attacked by skinheads. Just different colored paint jobs. HMM, one might think that when the first toyline from the megaton-bomb of a movie didn't sell, Mattel repainted the "new" ones to sell off to collectors. I bought every one that I didn't recognize, and only got one that I already had (and my first had a bit of packaging damage, so just as well). I found a site that had a list of all the cars, 25 total models. I'm still 8 shy of a complete collection. A more enterprising person than myself might go and buy up all the cars, as that site had none cheaper than $4, and 2 of the ones I got for a buck sold for 12-15 dollars. I haven't checked eBay. But I have a feeling the prices of these will only go down, given the poor splash the DVD made.
      I then went to KMart and bought something Byron was briefly fascinated by. He would've been more fascinated if he knew what is was, and why we'd soon be needing it.
      It's a second litterbox.



      My kids are getting along just fine, Byron's stopped spraying, and even their minor disputes, like the one over a new box on the floor that was meant to house Speed Racer Hot Wheels, and just put there because they were curious about it and really, isn't it too small to fit either cat? How could they care about it?


      Killsy: "Does this box make me look fat?"
      He hovered around the box, making his little wheezing noises of "Well, I never!" As soon as she hopped out, he hopped in, and she circled it, giving me looks of "I do declare, that was certainly meant to be MY box!" And when he left, she got in, despite not fitting in it very well, and when she left...But not a hiss or growl or batted paw.
      I live alone, so the inside doors are never closed. The litter box and the water dish are in the bathroom; the box for ease of cleaning, and the water dish in the tub as Byron will not drink before smacking the dish around and spilling some of it. The bedroom is the place where I spend the most of time when home on workdays, but the cats sleep elsewhere at night. Byron usually plops down on my chest when I first go to bed, so that I can pet him and he can knead me; then, in the warmer months, he leaves. Killsy will frequently sleep with me, or more accurately on me, which leads to a deep sleep and pleasant dreams.
      What will they do when the bedroom door is shut, with DJ inside?
      That's what's recommended, keeping a new kitten away from the other cats for a few days. I already know at least one thing that will happen: me waking in the middle of the night to pee and blearily walking into the damn door. But will they be scratching at the door, or screaming at it? The second I open it, will they rush in, and will I have to shove them back out? Will DJ be just as eager to escape and slip by me during the night?
      The plan is to keep him in the bedroom until Friday night or Saturday (and Byron has just now left my lap after a prolonged petting session. There will be a brief pause as I remove his shedded fur from my clothes). Friday is the only day I expect to leave the house for long, due to a long-planned antiquing trip with Ms Jessica; since I hope to see Up, maybe I can do that Thursday. Or will my plans all come crashing down when the cats (and maybe kitten) scream and claw at the door, then race out for an early encounter? Well, if I'm leaving the house, DJ will be closed in. Not even Byron Thumb-Boy can open the bedroom door. Although he'll certainly try. He is the kitten who tried to follow me to work by burrowing under the front door...
      I'm anxious for DJ to join our lives, but I'm starting to just plain get anxious. Since I decided to adopt him, the peeing has stopped, the fighting has stopped, peace has reigned in Splutopia. I hope that I've made the right decision.
      But I had these worries before Byron, and even before sweet Killsy. Cross your fingers...


      I mentioned that I plan to see Up early on in my vacation, when DJ's safely behind closed doors. I was startled when I checked the movie times--It's playing in only one normal theater, but in four 3D theaters?
      I haven't seen a 3D movie in 25 years, beause all I really remember is that 3D's lame, and the glasses give me a headache, and they had to fit over my real glasses and they didn't very well. It prly didn't help that the movie was Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared Zyn.
      So, has anyone seen a recent 3D movie, especially a Pixar one? Is it worth the experience and the extra money?
      Polyester had scratch-and-sniff Smellovision cards. Now that was a cinematic breakthrough!


      The 2 main things for my vacation are integrating DJ into the household (FUN!) and transferring my old Geocities page to thoughtviper.com ("...fun").
      I tried it today, just to see how tedious it would be. Hey, could someone do me a favor and take a look at this? It can NOT be this easy. I just copied the page. I didn't even have to change the location of the images--but that may just be my computer caching them. There's also a weird thing going on; I can't type anything into my Google taskbar on that (and only that) page. There's a document icon by the url in the taskbar, which of course means...something. Even if the page is basically a screenshot, I don't know what's up with that. Or really care; it's just weird.
      I'll still have to replace all the links that go back to the Geo site, so there's that tedious task. Other than the very minor editing out of the crap that fires up the Geo ad pages (which would be easy to spot in the code even if they didn't already say "REMOVE THIS"), that seems to be all the drudgery involved.
      I think. Someone please take a look, and if there are no comments saying that it doesn't work, well, this will take only a few hours of very lazy near-effort to transfer. (Note that there is a broken image link there, just like there has been on my current front page for 8 years. That should give you an idea of the level of dedication I devote to my site)

      Calm before the DJ storm:


      The only way to solve any New Box conflict is to get 2 boxes. Two exactly the same boxes, right down to the brand. Because otherwise, they both want the "new" box. Once both cats have been in both boxes, they can't tell them apart. But they can tell them apart if they don't have the same packaging. No, really, they can. I had to replace a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale box with a second Sierra Nevada Torpedo box, as one was a lighter shade of green than the other.


      Apparently, transferring my Geocities files really will be that easy. If I'd known, I would've done it 8 years ago! (No I wouldn't've. I am lazy)

      Watched yesterday: The Tale of Desperaux, a CG cartoon based on some books I've never heard of. It did poorly at the box office, and the most positive reviews it got praised the look more than the story. It somehow wandered to the top of my queue, and thus into my mailbox.
      It had top notch actors doing the voices, although I don't recall any of the actors doing VO previously. Apparently they were paid in advance, as they gave it all the "Is it quitting time yet?" lack of enthusiasm that they couldn't muster.
      It was about a rat, voiced by Dustin Hoffman (he did Ratso Rizzo, geddit?). And when Dustin Hoffman can't be bothered to chew any scenery...Then, suddenly, the rat was gone, and it was about some deformed mouse. Then, suddenly, I awoke in bed 2 hours later. I stumbled back to the TV thinking, wow, that was a lot of movie to have nothing happen in it, I'll just finish it off--HALF an HOUR?! I watched thirty MINUTES of this?! And there's still an hour left?!
      Desperaux times call for Desparaux measures. So I shut it off.

      Tomorrow promises to be more entertaining, filled with drama and comedy and wild action! Killsy was suspicious of the bottle of water, box of litter, and bag of (kitten) food that went into the bedroom today. She already knows that "DJ" means something...but what?
      I know everyone wants pictures, but I have no idea how tomorrow's going to go, with me alternating between the closed bedroom and the curious (possibly furious!) felines on the other side of the door. If there's no update tomorrow, don't read anything into it. I expect to be quite busy.


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