31 July 2006

Offspring's eternal.

Apparently there’s some sort of educational initiative in play here. The local schools have given, as part of the summer assignments, at task in which teenaged students are to “Explore the miracles of childbirth!”

Now, if you ask me, most of them have already explored it by the time they got to High School and really didn’t need too much prodding to take this on as a summer project, at least the first steps of the process. I complained to the school board.

I was told to relax, they were to research their own births as seen through the eyes of their parents, to record their loving mother's and father's thoughts and emotions when they saw their child for the first time; experienced the wonder when holding this beautiful, fragile, miracle…

Yeah, right!

“Listen!” I told Lout #1. “When I first saw you, you were a waxy-looking, shivering lump and I was reluctant to hold you as I thought the nurse could have done a much better job on the rub down. Bits of your previous domicile were sticking to you; a habit, I might add, to which you cling to this day.” (The state of Lout #1’s bedroom-burrow is a bone of contention. Indeed, the rest of contention's skeleton may well be concealed within. Who knows? The Lout won’t tell and I dare not enter the room.)

“Do go on…” Replied Lout #1 phlegmatically while scribbling notes.

“Well, as soon I held you, you started crying like I had spent your college fund. Well, I had in fact, but at the time you had no way of knowing it.”

“And then?”

“I commented on how misshapen your head was. The Doctor mentioned that this was the result of your passage through the birth canal. Babies’ heads are quite malleable, he said.

“Well, that was the first thing of interest all day! 'Really?' I asked enthusiastically, my hands making kneading motions. 'Like plasticine?' I had visions of the Mayan’s with their forehead molding-boards. Being more artistic, I was thinking along the lines of a soft-serve cone”

Lout #1 stopped writing and raised a single eyebrow. He stole that from me.

“Well, just think!" I said. "You’d never have lost a cap to the wind as it would be well screwed on and you’d have had one hell of a wicked head butt!”

“And yet, my head is a normal shape…”

“True enough.” I glowered. “Your mother had been claiming that she was exhausted; quite spent and unable to finish her appointed task of re-roofing the barn. Turns out she had quite a bit of energy left after all, and it took several pressings of her morphine switch to get her calmed down. By then, she’d made her point. I still have some of the scars. Would you like to see?”

Lout #1 demurred. “Then what?” He asked, returning to his note taking.

“Well, after a day or so, you’d cleaned up remarkably well. I thought that maybe you’d be worth keeping, so we went home. But then…”

“Yeees?” again with the eyebrow. I should have had that patented.

“Well, there was this stench. I was like a cheese ripening in the fetid muck of a Vietnamese river delta. According to your mother, I was to change you.”

“And did you?”

“Well, I bloody well tried, but the Porsche dealer wouldn’t take you as a trade.”

“I think that mom meant my diaper needed to be changed.”

“Well, yes, as it turns out. And I wasn’t to use a pressure washer, sand blaster or ultrasonic bath either. It wouldn’t have been too bad, but just about the time you stopped, Lout# 2 took over.” I took a long draw on my beer. Imparting wisdom is a thirsty business.

“Well, if it’s any consolation, soon you’ll be in adult diapers and it’ll be my turn to change you!” He said while patting my hand.

“Yes, but you’ll be lucky to get a Yugo out of the deal.”

“Actually, I wasn’t setting my goals so high. Something along the lines of a micro-bike or an old, beat-up Schwinn, maybe…”

Impertinent bastard! Where the hell does he get it from?

30 July 2006

Yer Riyal Anus

It seems that my new job title is to be “Vice President of Operations”, making it clear that our new Corporate Overlords are well aware of my proclivity for sloth. After all, when have you ever heard of a “Vice President of Operations” that ever did a lick of work other than the occasional Power-point cheerleading presentation given to the troops before they have to go over the top in the mud?

I think it’s a fitting tribute to my years of lackluster performance and I am almost as proud of it as I was of the job title I had given myself.

You see, earlier in my career I found it was quite useful to have a variety of trade publications lying about, to appear diligent in my Continuing Education and more importantly to hastily cover porn during unannounced visits from corporate nabobery.

I saw no need to pay for these publications, so I chose the tawdry ones that are really naught but a compilation of ads and outrageous technical claims. The covers are lovely and glossy, with impressive looking machines on them (generally lit with purple and orange gels) and boffinistic titles like “Does your J.I.S.M. protocols meet the new CE RoHS S.P.U.N.K standards?” (n.b., they do.)

All you need to garner a subscription to these rags is to answer a few simple questions: 1) How big is your company? 2) Can you sign off on purchase orders? and 3) What is your job title? Well, we already had a corporate“President” so I would reply “King”.

“Er, what?”

“You heard me. My job title is 'King'.”

“No really, what is it?”

“Are you calling me a liar, Sir?”

“Oh, no, no, no, no! ‘King’ it is then.”

Long story short, after getting a huge amount of junk mail addressed to “Dr. E. Scientist (phD), King”, I demanded that people refer to me as “Your Majesty” and started using the royal “We” as it is very, very annoying.

This might have stopped in due course had not our dentist started a new “buddy-buddy” policy.

“How,” we were asked, “would you like to be addressed?” We believe they were expecting reponses like “By my given name” or “Mr/Mrs/Ms/Dr/Rev., & etc.”

“Your Majesty!” We replied haughtily. The receptionist made a note of it.

A few minutes later, you could have heard a pin drop when she announced “Your Majesty, the Dentist is ready for you.”

We gathered ourselves up most regally. “Excellent! Show us in!”

“Did I hear that correctly?” we heard an awed peon whisper.

The receptionist responded with a prodigious sniff.

You must understand that a dental receptionist is from a better class of people; or so they think.

“What’s he here for?” asked the waiting peasant.

The receptionist’s sigh carried the perfect blend of contempt and arrogance.

“Duh, a crown!"


Ivan posits: "Better a corgi than a bicycle like those bloody IKEA flatpack monarchs in Scandinavia. What a bunch of bastards they are, marrying Australians and all.Gimme some toffee-nosed haemophiliac retard any day of the week. They make much better whimpering noises when you string 'em up..."

26 July 2006

Cauliflower Power

I like the stuff, especially raw. The rest of the household is not keen on it (save the dog, but his favourite snacks are the tootsie rolls that are to be had from the cat box), so I bought a bag of florets to eat at work.

I recalled bagging the cauliflower at the store, but they were absent from the bags when I unpacked at home. A mystery, yes, but not one of enough import to fever the imaginations of future historians. I promptly forgot about it.

Monday morning came as Monday mornings will, with the sickly perspiration of used ethanol and despair. I staggered int the harsh sunlight and opened the truck door, only to be greeted with a wall of vileness; like the unholy cabbage and Buckfast flatus of an obese, decomposing wino.

The dog has this sort of infernal power, but usually reserves its use for family dinners. I could safely rule him out. Gretchen too, as she was gone over the weekend. Who, then?

A brief search identified the culprit; the errant cauliflower. It was no longer a cheerful white, but a baleful and sickly mottled greenish-brown. The cellophane packet was taut, distended by the unholy thing waiting to be born.

I could not dispose of this in our garbage, as the neighborhood would be uninhabitable should the bag burst. No, I would have to dispose of this in a brilliantly engineered, hermetically sealed, steel box of the type that only the Germans can produce. Lucky for me, I had one at my disposal. I could rest easy.

The day proved a scorcher and late in the afternoon, an indignant Irish Bob came to my office.

“My Mercedes smells like Beelzebub has purged the very bowels of hell into it!” he said in an accusatory tone. I didn't look up from the porn concealing spreadsheet.

“You really ought to bathe more often, Bob” I replied blandly. “You are fouling the air.”

“No, some bastard put a bag of rotten veggies in my car and it burst.” He said, again, with the hairy eyeball.

“Must have been the skate punks” I replied unsympathetically. “Their sort of petty vandalism exactly why I lock my truck.”

Despite admonitions to the contrary, the skate punks like to come here to thrash. I like to thrash skate punks, so we have a perfect little cyclic yin and yang thingy going on, marred only by the police who do not share my Tao.

Unenlightened bastards.

Bob glared at me for a bit. “Skate punks?”

“Yep. I saw them out there this morning. Looked furtive. Chased them off, but I'll bet they snuck back”

Bob went outside to look for the culprits.

Alas, they proved elusive and poor Irish Bob had no outlet at which to vent his spleen. When I left that evening, he was screaming at the seagulls that were wheeling about over his auto.

Just another day in paradise.

24 July 2006

Well, it's late July, and...

Time for the fat man to get stung again. The burrowing wasps had found a different location for their ambush and were a lot more aggressive than before. Used a different airframe with a bigger payload, too.

They waited until the lawnmower had passed then sprung the ambush.

“EEEEEEE!” I shrieked and ran inside. A goodly number followed. After the killing, bawling and generally acting in Conduct Unbecoming, I grabbed two cans of bug death and went back outside.

Only to be stung again by the waiting wasps.

So, back in side for a few more minutes of shrieking, bawling.and contemptuous looks from spouse and offspring (I really must have a midlife crisis soon and trade them in on a Porsche), and it was back outside. I went looking a bit lumpier.

Two more stings, three cans of bug death and five gallons of ether later, the nest is gone and I danced around the burning corpses and cackled. This sort of behavior is not only cathartic, but keeps me from getting stuck with jury duty. It's really not such a bad thing. Try it.

After dancing myself out, I pondered why the damn wasps haven't learned yet. Oh, sure, they get a few good jabs in, but in the end it is a Pyrrhic effort, their corpse left twitching amongst the shattered burning ruins of their city and Godzilla dances about in triumph.

What the Hell were they thinking?

Queen: “You there, take 100 wasps and go sting that fattie!”

Wasps “But he'll kill the lot of us!”


Much shrieking and cursing, then Splat!

I used to think that as a species we humans treated our soldiers a little better, but I have evidence to the contrary.

Sgt: “Jenkins, come here! I need to use your rump cheeks as a bench vice.”

Private Jenkins' epiphany. The exact moment at which he decided not to reinlist is recorded for posterity.

Photo credit to "Break!" apparently.

23 July 2006


This post actually has a point, and not just my normal sleazy search engine manipulation in an attempt to inflate my hit-stats. (Number one on Google for “Pointed Breasts”, BTW and far more disturbingly, number one for “Golfing Nomenclature”. Filthy Pervos.)

No, the point is that one can get tripped up on slang with unpleasant results. Take “Norks” for example. On the Brit side of the pond they're breasts. Nice enough for the most part and very unlikely shell Seoul then drive through Pyongyang in a slathering horde on their way to the sea. I've a bit of an issue with mine, but on women they look smashing. Let us say for the record that I approve.

On the Yank side of the pond however, a Nork (NORth Korean you see,) is a minion of the ch, ch, ch chia dicatator.

Admittedly, Dear Leader is a boob, and I've seen more than a few silicon implants in Vegas that are larger, but one would think that there is not enough alcohol in the world to get the two confused.

However, since they started employing riff-raff at Foggy Bottom, and with the tense state of things these days, I should like to remind the State Department to keep their hands to themselves after imbibing in Chosun Sinbo.

The chief Nork. Looks safe enough, but God help you if you were to grope it.

Western intelligence agencies believe that the thing on its head either conceals an anti misssile radar antenna or is some sort of filter-feeding mechanism for harvesting plankton.

21 July 2006

Knife crime getting worse in UK

Scream the headlines. It sounds as if one can’t even leave the house any more without a kukri wielding yobbo tearing out one’s gizzard. This simply does not happen very often here in Yankee land.

These days, we don’t have a much of a problem with knife or gun crime in the US. This is not because we are less violent, and we are certainly not more inclined to pay attention to the law; it’s simply that if some villain were to commit a robbery, a nearby pensioner is likely to open up a can of whoop-ass apple sauce on him.

Case in point:

customer at a city grocery tackled an armed robber and beat him with a can of applesauce when he refused to drop his gun, police said. "

It gets better:

"The suspect shot himself in the head during the struggle, and passed out after the 66-year-old customer administered four blows to the head with the Mott's applesauce"

"…Customer Thomas Santana, who is 5-foot-4, grabbed the 6-foot-1 (23 year old) gunman from behind when he was on the freezer, and with help from Gomez knocked him down."

I’m sure you Rambo types would like to know which caliber of apples sauce the diminutive Mr. Santana used. I’m guessing it was the 48oz Chuky style; it has more stopping power.

When applesauce is illegal only criminals will have applesauce,
Or: You can have my applesauce when you pry it out of my cold, dead, hands.

20 July 2006

All You Really Need to Know About Sports, Part II

Golf is dangerous, at least to cows. Golf courses are full of holes that are just the right size for a cow to step in and break their leg. Then it’s “BLAM”! and off to the grille for Bossie. So you’d think the local courses would be thrill when I filled in all the holes for them; shielding them from cattlitigation, but nooooo….

The golf course owners exhibited the same level of bovinical ignorance as the amazed journalists that penned this oh, so newsworthy
article (Money Quote: “The bulls are charmed with a teaser animal — usually a steer —” Yeesh! First they lose their nads, then they are subjected to prison romance!)

However, the golf course owners did claim that a) they require the holes as an income source and b) that they generally take pains to keep the herds safely off the greens.

So, to demonstrate my magninamity I spent the next night cutting holes for them; a total of 944 to be exact. Since they were charging $50 for a round of 18 holes, they should have been able to clear $2500 a round easy, but once again they just pissed and moaned.

There’s no pleasing some people.

Futbol, then? At least you Brits can’t complain that Benjamin Franklin mucked up the spelling of that word. Nope; that was the Spanish. We still spell it “football” even though: 1) Only two people on each team actually kick the ball, and 2) Both of them are pansies. (One should note that I do not say this to kicker’s faces because I am too much of a gentleman, and also a great coward.)

Now, what everyone else on the planet thinks of when they hear the word “football” is an entirely different thing. Our football is an engaging activity where three hundred pound plus prospective supermax inmates chase an oblate-spheroid about with the twin goals of removing spleens from the other team’s players and then eating them. Futbol, on the other hand, is a game were the players chase a uniform ball that goes predictably were it is kicked and there is very little in the way of cannibalistic entertainment. Boooooring!

Our football is a game of yards and inches, whereas futbol is a game of meters. I ask you, did Lord Horatio Hornblower fall in the battle of Trafalgar square in 1492 so that John Bull would be forced to multiply by 2.54 then divide by 36 to decipher some mad continental notion of distance, without the pleasant diversion of Johnny Crapaud noshing on some Italian’s innards? No Sir, he did not!

A head butt is simply not an acceptable substitute, and were I a stout hearted Briton, I should be sorely offended.

Besides, I’m an Everton fan. What the hell sort of inducement is that to watch futbol?

19 July 2006

All You Really Need to Know About Sports: Part I

People are frequently amazed that with such a prodigious girth, I could be such a talented athlete. This is due to that fact that most people are stupid enough to believe my lies.

“You bowled a perfect 300? Really?” To which I nod modestly whilst sipping their beer.

Idiots? Yes. But they fill an important niche in the food chain. I’d go thirsty if not for them.

Truth be told, I recently golfed a perfect 300 and my last bowling score would make Tiger Woods green with envy had he scored it on the front nine of St. Andrews.

While it’s true that I seldom exercise and that I’m naturally clumsy, my real problem is that the games are too damn similar, and I get them confused.

I know that golf was invented by the Scots (after all, it’s “FLOG” spelled backwards) and whatever governmental regulatory body that gave the go-ahead to this sport must have been mad. I mean, really! Any dolt that gave a load of whisky sodden Celts a license to whack about with clubs must really be fond of cranial trauma with a side order of the sound stylings of castrati with impenetrable Glaswegian accents (think Robbie Coltrane as a member of “Alvin and the Chipmunks”).

And don’t get me started on bowling… a game involving ten pins and balls? That sounds like an acupuncture session with the Marquis de Sade.

The similarities go further. Both sports require one to wear ugly polyester shirts and rent special multi-coloured clown footwear that smell as if they until very recently lovingly cradled the decomposing feet of a large, sweating hillbilly.

Or, at least they do now.

Throw in some cigars and a vast quantity of recreational fermented malt beverages, and the games are virtually indistinguishable. Above all, good sportsmanship is required for both sports.
Always replace any divots that you tear up from the bowling lanes and don’t forget to yell “Fore!” before hurling your 16 pounder at a foursome that is playing too slow.

Tomorrow in Part II: “How to actually have fun on a golf course” and “Futbol vs. Football” (Or “Why must the rest of the world insist on using their feet?”)

17 July 2006

I decide to go hiking, Part two…

Only to be called back by Ray’s distraught wife, Nadine. It seems that Ray went deer hunting that morning and could I keep an eye out for him?

I was not particularly surprised. Ray is not the type that is overly burdened with the brand of ethics that would tie him to observing hunting regulations. This has gained him several wormy off season deer and a few thousand dollars in fines.

“Sure” I said. More fool me.

The woods in these parts are third or fourth growth, making for mean, scrubby trees that do not provide total shade. This allows for a cancerous growth of hawthorns and brambles. I should have been able to hear Ray from his anguished wails, but there was naught but an eerie silence.

I walked for mile upon mile. I called out to him… What? It was too miles!

Be that way. I’m not that out of shape!


After a few hundred feet into the woods, I finally heard a plaintiff whine.

“That you, Ray?” I called out.

“Thank God!” Came a croak. “I’m all tangled up. I’ve been shooting three shots in the air as a distress signal, but no one came. I’m almost out of arrows!”

Yeah. It was Ray.

“Where the Hell are you?” I asked.

“In the hawthorn thicket with my buck.” He called back.

“Why did you shoot a buck in that mess?”

“I didn’t. I dragged him in here.”


“Well, I has dragging him by his hind legs, but his antlers kept getting all tangled up. So I thought it would be easier to drag him by the antlers and it was, but then I was getting further and further from home. I ended up in here.”

I could see him about this time. He was well and truly stuck. I freed the deer and started to drag it home. Ray called me a bunch of nasty things, but soon I was out of earshot.

Nadine saw me and hurried down the hill.

“Did you see Ray?” She asked nervously.

“Yeah, he’s back in the hawthorns, throwing a fit” I said.


“Well, yeah. I thought about which to do first, but I figured that no one in their right mind would steal Ray.”

She had no answer to that.

13 July 2006


I went to a baseball game yesterday. I went mostly for the beer and food. It’s the sort of grub that can only be found in central Pennsylvania.

Here, they serve the sort of dense gelatinous “food” that will bind your guts up for several days, allowing you to pass naught but some noxious, black clouds of toxic gas of the sort that one might expect of one were to ignite Kieth Richards.

In short, damn tasty stuff, if a little hard on one’s coworkers.

I certainly didn’t go for the talent. Our local team is a very minor league team called the “Spikes”.

Why “Spikes”? It’s not exactly a mascot that inspires fear and panic.

Spikes are the surly fourteen year-olds of the animal kingdom. It really doesn’t take too much in the way of imagination (or recreational pharmaceuticals) to imagine them excessively pierced, wearing baggy pants and listening to their ungodly death metal at brain pureeing volume.

I don’t know why today’s teenagers can’t listen to the perfectly normal death metal of our generation; fine, melodic bands like The Cat Butt Reamers and Bealzebübba, but I think lead paint must have something to do with it.

In any event, on the way to work this morning, a spike ambled across the road. His head bobbed to the thumping of his ear buds as he stopped in my lane. Being mindful of my insurance rates, I too, came to a halt scant feet from him. What the hell was the moron thinking?

Now, Ted Nugent claims that deer only think of three things: “Where is the best place to eat?”, “How can I have sex?” and “Run away!”

Then he made a very unkind comparison to Jacques Chirac.

Be that as it may, this particular deer was clearly in the throws of spotty adolescence and was obviously thinking of nothing.

I looked at him. He glared back.

I honked my horn. He gave me “The Hoof”.

I rolled down my window and yelled at him.

Bambi finally realized the magnitude of his error. He was not facing down a hippy in a hybrid, he was looking at the blunt end of a pick-up with a redneck at the wheel.
His hooves skittered as he tried to complete his passage of the road, but at the last minute he decided to juke back the way he came. The only problem with this was that his legs were still going the other direction. The spike overbalanced, struck his head on the pavement. His legs twitched for a couple of seconds, then he was still.

Now, killing a deer with one’s voice is not the kind of thing a foaming nut case fellow with delusions of grandeur needs to know he can do (he might try it out on a skunk or congresscritter and get sprayed), but it’s certainly an ability that he’d want to show off at work.

So I threw the deer into the truck bed and drove on.

Well, it turns out that Bambi wasn’t entirely dead. He recovered enough to jump out of my truck, dash across the roof of an astonished cop’s car and vanish into the lush ungulate smorgasbord that is suburbia.

The cop and I both looked at the hoof prints on the roof of his cruiser and shook our heads.

Come to think of it, Spikes are the perfect mascot.

And that's the way I likes it.