Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Go to Bed Old New Age Man

I am listening to the latest Vangelis album, Rosetta. Some people put entire albums up on YouTube, or so I hear.

I had a vision of my sixteen year-old self realizing that some thirty years on, he would be listening to Vangelis and Tangerine Dream a lot and what would he think? That fresh-faced Cure fan in 1987?

I like to think he'd whisper softly "Awesome!"

Monday, October 24, 2016

Saw II

I cut down a tree in our backyard this weekend. Or, more accurately, I cut lots of gigantic heavy branches off a tree armed only with a woodsaw (not unlike the ones you get for precocious toddlers), and dodged quickly out of the way as the limbs crashed earthward. Somehow, I managed to avoid crippling injury.

This is a black pine that a landscaper planted about ten years ago, when we had our back yard redone, taking it from a nightmarish jungle that probably housed at least one tribe of tiny devil-men into an alarmingly well-groomed paradise. (It has since reverted to just kind of unkempt and dead, but I took lots of pictures of it when it was just done so I have the proof.) He planted the tree and assured us that it would get to be "no more than ten or twelve feet". Of course it is now closer to twenty feet and now represents everything our neighbor resents about us, as it stretches into their yard, threatening their electrical wires and casting a lightless pallor over their once-beautiful hydrangea.

What I want to say is that I have grown as a person, because even though I formed a cunning plan for how to fell a twenty-foot tall pine tree without maiming myself, I recognized that it was fairly likely I would end up maimed in this scenario and chose not to do it.

This represents a significant step forward.

Friday, October 21, 2016


I admit it. I am not very good at video games. I used to play them a lot. And I mean a lot. Your Colecovision. Your ROB the Video Robot. But when I look back at my greatest video game accomplishments, probably #1 is finishing Pitfall on the Atari 2600 when I was 11. And I went backwards, which somehow seems less honorable.

I am just now--just now!--playing HalfLife 2 Episode 1, despite the fact that I have owned the game for years. I have a stack of games I started playing a good five years ago and kind of dicked around with for a week or a month before completely forgetting what I was doing.

Every once in a while I'll start up DragonAge: Origins again and it takes me an hour of confusion to remember that I'm supposed to be defeating some dwarf champion in the Battle Arena so I can oust a corrupt dwarf politician. And I have this terrible feeling that I should be able to make potions or something but I can't even remember what button to press to make that happen. And which dwarf politician is the good one? So much pressure.

My daughter plays Animal Crossing with a slavish devotion. I envy her this focus, which I seem to remember having when I spent entire afternoons playing Cosmic Ark in 1983.


At least there's always Katamari Damacy.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

What is this thing again?

I think it may be time. Time enough has passed that virtually all blogs have disappeared. This is provably true because just now I looked at the list of blogs I had linked on my Blogger template and all but maybe one was gone (and one was now a link to a porn site). Possibly everyone assumes that this site has disappeared as well, so I can finally get back to blathering away here, safe from the prying eyes of the internet. I have been roused from my cryosleep, secure in the knowledge that we have achieved a beautiful utopia, where freakish pig-men could not possibly get really really close to being elected president. Wait...what?!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


Would you like to see a video of a guy intentionally getting stung by a tarantula hawk? You would probably think "If I have to watch a guy get stung by a huge, monster-like insect, I'd prefer that he has a really dumb name." Maybe a name like Coyote Peterson?

Well, you're in luck.

Not to spoil the delights of watching this video, but you get to see this guy rolling around on the ground and going AAAAAAAAAGH. And that's not to mention the really unnecessarily long intro section where you get to see him getting bitten by a crocodile on purpose and sucked on by leeches, also on purpose.

I challenge you not to laugh while watching that, especially with the subtitles on.

Subtitle: [groaning]

Also, Coyote Man says it's for science, this getting stung by things and bitten by other things. Very scientific!
Cameraman: Are you ok? Does it hurt bad?


Wednesday, August 07, 2013

No Blue Shell

This morning on the way in to work, I was right next to a flatbed tow truck. The guy driving reached his arm out the window and flipped a banana peel perfectly up in the air, to land right on the flatbed. It described such a nice trajectory, just so much loft and spin, landing splayed evenly, upright.

As I passed him, I thought--just for a moment--he might be dressed like Donkey Kong. Sadly, no. But I like to think he knew what he was doing.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Allergic...TO BEES!

No-one has ever made a heart-stopping thriller called Allergic to Bees, but it could really be something. A guy living out his life just like everyone else, but just that little bit more carefully. Every few minutes he would see something yellow or black or yellow and black, or hear a buzzing, and for a second he'd go "Is that a bee?"

and then a minute later he'd go "Oh... no. I guess it's not a bee."

And then he'd move on.

It would be like Repulsion, with bees! Or no bees.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011


So I watched the Super Bowl, after my 18-month old had gone to bed, so she wouldn't bother me with her constant yammering about how Troy Polamalu is overrated or with her tedious diatribes about the 3-4 defense. And sure, it was a good game--but when 2 teams you don't care about are playing in the Super Bowl, it's all about the commercials.

Apparently there was something about a guy eating Doritos off other men's pants that didn't go over very well with basically all of humanity, and some highbrow satire from Groupon that didn't bother anyone even a little bit. Way to overestimate America's sense of humor, Groupon.

My favorite was the new starkly realistic talking baby E-Trade ad, where he suddenly loses his ability to trade stocks, to talk, even to think in a complex way. Stock price graphs become nothing but lines to him, their pretty colors an unanswerable riddle. In the end, he poops on himself. The last shot as the camera pulls away shows an enigmatic grin, suggesting that, perhaps, the only real success is in failure.

Or the other one, where he is indicted for securities fraud, gets tried as an adult, and spends a year in Leavenworth. That one was good too.

Of course, that's not true. I hate the talking baby. I hate him powerfully and beautifully, as I have mentioned before in other times, referring to other babies.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Futontross

I put you on Freecycle, futon. And still, no-one wants you. What does that say about you, futon? That no-one wants you even when you are free. And I didn't even include the awful truth that you still smell vaguely of cat pee.

Your mattress weighs a metric ton, and your folding frame does not stay up--one of many ways that you are an invertebrate. Your mattress is too heavy and thick for your frame, I know. It was me that made the poor choice of giant mattress with inadequate frame. But that does not excuse you just lying there, taking up half the guest room, taunting me with your amorphousness--some vast and awful reminder of why some wonders of the Orient should have been left there, along with duck feet and/or beaks.

Your days are numbered, futon.

Friday, November 19, 2010


Burrito longitudinal split! Structural integrity fatally compromised!

I am engulfed in a sea of frijoles negros. It is much like Pompeii, only with more warning and legumes.


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