Monday, February 28, 2005

Oh my head

Three parties this weekend. The first was my big annual bash on Friday night. It was a great success, I actually gathered FIVE fellow bloggers as well as a motley assortment of other friends. It was great to meet Chuck, Beth, Carol, the Curmudgeon in Training, and Sarriah face-to-face and in person. I was delighted by them all, and look forward to our next meeting. Pictures will be forthcoming, once The Curmudgeon forwards a few to me. He's an artist, though, and you can't rush brilliance. Then on Saturday night I was at a friend's house in El Segundo--which is clear over on the opposite side of the LA basin from me. Fun was had by all. Then yesterday I attended Jack's annual Oscar Party. I came in DEAD LAST in the annual contest to guess which movie would win which awards. I guess I just don't think like the Academy. Perhaps this is a good thing. Now there is much work to do. Pray for me.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

There is no try ... only doo

Stormpooper. Posted by Hello

My Oscar Picks

I got a late start this year, so there are still a few important movies I haven't seen yet, but here are my picks. Note: I did not pick the ones I liked the best, I picked the ones that I believe the Academy will like best for their political stance on various issues. As far as I'm concerned the two movies that were the best this year were "Sideways," "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "Napolean Dynamite." Best Picture: Ray Best Actor: Don Cheadle for Hotel Rwanda Best Actress: Hilary Swank for Million Dollar Baby (She actually was my favorite) Best Supporting Actor: Jamie Foxx for Collateral Best Supporting Actress: Cate Blanchett for The Aviator (also very good) Best Director: Mike Leigh for Vera Drake (Never saw it, but I'm voting for it because the topic is a political darling of Hollywood.) Best Original Screenplay: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind -- Charlie Kaufman Best Adapted Screenplay: Sideways -- Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor Cinematography: The Passion of the Christ Editing: Ray Art Direction: A Very Long Engagement Costume Design: Troy Original Score: The Passion of the Christ Visual Effects: I, Robot Best Animated Feature Film: The Incredibles I didn't show my picks for several topis. I didn't see any animated shorts, for example, except that time I took those magic mushrooms and pranced about in my boxers.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Men in Music

I don't want to come off as an old codger who is ragging on today's music. But I would like to issue a suggestion to men in music. I was recently given three DVDs full of the latest, hippest music. (Yes, that is a hell of a lot of music. It would take me about 80 hours to listen to it all.) But I noticed such a prevalent trend amond the male vocalists, I thought I would bring it up. Guys, stop whining! You all sound like a bunch of spineless amoebas who are grovelling at the feet of the almighty being known as women. I know women act like they want you to grovel, but if you do they'll lose all respect for you. And you've lost my respect too. Get the fuck up off your knees, stop listening to "The Cure," and be a man for god's sake. And the other half of you men--those of you who want to "smack your bitch up" ... your dad obviously should have taught you some manners. Go to Jail. Go directly to Jail. Do not pass Go. Do not collect royalties from your music. Oh god, it makes me turn to my XM radio, click "3" on the pre-select, and listen to "Frank's Place." In Frank Sinatra's era of music, the men are men. They don't grovel, they still admit to getting their hearts broken but they are still strong. The women don't hide behind the veneer of faux female empowerment. They just have soul, and they don't need to hide. There, rant over. Special thanks to: Frank, Dean, Tony, Sammy, Nat, Sarah, Ella, and mostly Billie ...

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Fear and Loathing Meets It's Inevitable End

Hunter S. Thompson ended his life a few hours ago. He was a fine writer, and a bizarre but truthful man. Sorry to see you go, Mr. Thompson.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Hi, I'm Jim and I'm an Irritable Male

So ... one of my co-workers lovingly points me to www.theirritablemale.com. (Hyperlink intentionally not created.) Apparently, as men age they decrease the amount of testosterone and that can make them irritable. This is called "Irritable Male Syndrome." Not to confuse males with bowels, but it's the disease du jour. The malady of the moment. Men, it seems, are becoming more irritable. So I take their long test, which exhausted me because of my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. And it turns out that I must be worse than I though--this is invariably due to all my "repressed memories." The results of the test tell me that I am an Irritable Male. I forget why, because of my A.D.D. Here is a sample of a few questions: Reflect on how often you felt the following in the last month: (Choices are: Not at all, Sometimes, Frequently, and All the time) Feelings listed are: Moody Grumpy Bored Tense Frustrated Sad, Etc. Who doesn't feel all of these emotions (and many more) every single month? I answered "Sometimes" to almost everything. This apparently means I have Irritable Male Syndrome. Undoubtedly, many men who have taken this test feel somehow validated that they have identified the source of their irritation, and actually give this guy money in hopes of a cure. I should invent the cure to an imaginary disease, and then create a web page that convinces people they have my imaginary disease. Hmmm ... let's see ... I'll call it "HASP." This stands for "Hyper-Active Sperm Production." I will suggest that a growing number of men in today's society have HASP, and suffer great amounts of misery--unnecessarily! Sample quiz: 1. Do you find yourself constantly thinking about sex? Y/N 2. Do you sometimes thing you don't have sex often enough? Y/N 3. When a beautiful woman is in the room, and is wearing slightly revealing clothing, do you find yourself distracted? Y/N 4. Do you sometimes wish that you could get sexual cooperation with your partner without having to woo, romance and otherwise seduce him/her? Y/N If you answered "Yes" to 2 of the 4 questions above, it is highly likely that you are suffering from HASP. But The Butcher has GOOD NEWS! {sound of sharpening knives in the background} This one-time treatment can cure your HASP in one short office visit! I better stop now, or I may frighten my readership. I think you get my idea.

Monday, February 14, 2005

The Enemy of your Enemy is your Friend

This story just in. Scientists are using an attenuated version of the HIV virus to fight cancer in mice. It's such a weird idea that it might actually work.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Bubble Bursts

Our predictions have failed. No jacuzzi for The Butcher. TMOTM will now have five minutes of silence.

Friday, February 11, 2005

The New American Century

 Posted by Hello I've been meaning to post this for awhile. My old friend Lori sent me this link awhile back: It's quite alarming, so it should be read with a skeptical eye. However, the points laid out on that page are, to some degree, why I've been such a dissident these past few years. The general place the country is going just *looks* scary. Discuss amongst yourselves ...

Hope is a Thing with Bubbles

I can't say for sure yet, but it looks as if The Meat of the Matter will soon be the proud owner of -- Drumroll -- A JACUZZI! And it's free! (Except the US$400 for delivery.) I realize this has no impact on my beloved readers, except that The Butcher will be reading more, more relaxed, and probably a little less edgy. I'll post a picture if it happens.

Thursday, February 10, 2005


I am so empassioned about this subject that I almost created www.glossolalia.blogspot.com. On that page I would have put very provocative headlines, like "Why we Really attacked Iraq." Then the body of each message would be ... well ... gibberish. Funny stuff, but not a good enough joke to keep an entire blog on its feet. Anyway, my relationship with glossolalia began when I was a lad. Being part of the Foursquare Church, we learned early on that you could be "filled with the Holy Spirit" and speak in tongues. My entire family began speaking in tongues after attending an evangelical "healing service" held by Charles and Francis Hunter. A quick websearch finds them still alive, still "The Happy Hunters" and still in the ministry! Wow. My initial experience with them was 30 Freakin' years ago, and they were old then. But I digress. Speaking in tongues is a form of glossolalia. The only difference is that people who speak in tongues actually think they are saying something to somebody somewhere. After breaking with my religion, it was many years before I could even scat-sing, because it's closeness to tongue-talking left me paralyzed with spooky feelings from my past. Trust me … a “message in tongues” in a church full of 500 people is spooky. Especially since, while one person rattles off ecstatic gibberish, a hush falls over the crowd so that one person can listen and be given the “interpretation” from the Holy Spirit. Wow, it’s hard to believe I actually bought that crap at one point I my life. BUT … I’m happy to say that glossolalia is back in my life, and in full form once again. It all began with my cat Frida.
"Blurpity!" Posted by Hello Frida is quite talkative, you see, and it occurred to me one day that the physical structure of a cat's mouth disallows it from making any sound other than vowels and a few smattering of other sounds. So while she says “Mwuuuurrrr,” what she really means is “Blurrrrpity.” The word “Blurpity” was the first. Since then, I’ve discovered many other words Frida utters. And lately, I’m finding that on my drives home from work, I think about greeting my cat, and many words of glossolalia emit from my mouth. There is something freeing about the practice of saying utter gibberish to no one. It's probably a form of meditation that the buddhists tapped into long ago. After all, how much fun could there be to have under a boddhi tree? Might as well imbibe in a little glossolalia. And now when I scat sing, I find similar words emitting from my maw. While most people sing “la la, dum deed um.” I sing “Blurpit flurrrp sclurpity Zowww.” I wonder if, as I get older, I am becoming … ummm … not so sane. I care not.

Monday, February 07, 2005

The Butcher will be back in 10 Minutes

I've been spending all my energy over on Carol's Blog in the comments of this post. I'm talking mostly with Dr. Bean, who wins kudos for being a Bushie with whom I can have a reasonable dialog with. We may not ultimately reach an agreement, but at least I'm learning. So in lieu of an actual post, I will offer this quick quip. I was talking with my son and daughter, mostly encouraging my son who has taken some big steps in improving a particular grade in school that he had been struggling with. My son is very bright (natch!) and I was saying "See? You're smart enough to ace that subject--the problem was that you just weren't studying right." My daughter wants to contribute to the conversation. She is 12. She says "Yeah ... ummmm ... (long pause) let me find exactly the right words." Then she says this to her brother: "Sometimes ... I think you're stupider than you actually are." Does it mean that I'm a bad Dad for laughing (hard) at this? :D

Friday, February 04, 2005

State of the Empire

I sat in a bar with co-workers while the state of the Union address was being delivered. I knew it would be impossible to obtain any coherent opinions through the laughter and beer fog. Especially since I had worked 15 hours prior. The only word I actually did hear (true story) was "Nuke-ya-ler." But luckily for the USA Today that arrived on my hotelroom doorstep, I am able to read a handy synopsis, and comment point-by-point. 1. First things first: Bush supports a ban on same-sex marriage. Note that they never call it "gay marriage" like most people. They call it same-sex marriage to emphasize the freakishly unnatural way they want us all to see it. This really sets the tone, doesn't it? He sounds kind of like those senators must have sounded when they arrived at the 3/5ths compromise. "Look, I'm a nice person here. I don't think you should hurt the little fellers, but black people just shouldn't get counted as completely human." Anyway, Bush is making a pointed effort at limiting the human rights of a certain group of people. This is not only boorish, but boring. It's frightening how little people recognize the trends in human history, and how people like Bush *always* lose. Mr. Bush, you might win in the short run, but you will lose in the long run. History will laugh at your small minded views on homosexuality. 2. Laura Bush will lead a 3-year initiative to help at-risk youth and curb gangs. This is a good initiative, but why Laura, and why only 3 years? You have 4 years, bub. Why slack off just because you're a short timer? 3. He's going to "Cut the federal budget deficit in half by 2009. I have three words to reply to this: No he's not. Mark my words. Let's revisit this in 2009 and see whose right. 4. He's going to seek $350 million to help fund Palestinian reforms in a push for Mideast peace. This is good and I'm sure he can raise this money. No problem there. 5. Oh yeah, Social Security Reform. First of all, every president has talked about this for the last three administrations. Bush is going to be all sound and fury unless he delivers--and I think he actually might. I'm with the President on this one. Something must be done about this. Presidents before have all shied away because there is no flawless or foolproof plan. But the very worst thing we can do with SS benefits is nothing. Democrats criticized Bush's assertion that by 2042 the SSA would be bankrupt if left alone. The Democrats say, "Nu uhh, it'll be 2052!" Well I guess Bush is a big dumb idiot then?? (Well, ok, yes he is. But you get my point.) Kerry said Bush is hyping a phony crisis. That is just silly. Why would Bush create a phony crisis that could cost him a lot of political clout to solve? It's better to create a phony crisis about some small, 3rd world country. Vilify them, then crush them and force them to become Democrats. THAT's how you hype a phony crisis. Oh wait ... nevermind. But seriously. Kerry's assertion that this is a phony crisis is likely the reason he lost the election: he has only slightly more of a clue than Bush. And on this one, he has no clue at all. The notion of private investment accounts appeals to my libertarian sensibilities. It's also a way to trickle down education and empowerment. It's a good way to lead people--let them lead themselves. So for once--I'm with Mr. Bush all the way. 6. US forces will train Iraqi forces, blah blah. Whatever. 7. They're still going after terrorists. Osama bin Laden is still alive and kicking and sending tapes to Al jazeera. Oh wait, he didn't say that last part. 8. He will increase Pell grants. I doubt it. 9. He wants tax credits to help low-income people to buy insurance. Lots of amenities that sound nice for the health care industry. I hope this will happen, but I doubt it will. 10. "The U.S. Government has no right, no desire, and no intention" to impose its form of government on others. Umm .... ! ... Bwahahahahahahahah! 11. Continued support of faith-based groups that support social services. Does a large contribution to the Republican General Fund constitute Social Service? This particular issue is a scary one for me. I think churches should pay taxes and be treated like any other business. Period. 12. Congress should push for alternative energy sources. This one is easy, and they will. They won't have any choice. 13. He wants to tighten our borders. That's just your fear talking, George. Let the little brown people in. Hey--at least they're not gay. Usually. 14. His tax cuts will be permanent. He wants to overhaul the tax code. Thanks George, but ... how are we going to pay for all your shit? And if he truly "overhauls" the tax code I will shave my head! Oh wait. I already did. OK, I'll shave my balls. But no pictures. 15. He's going to build a "culture of Life" (read: make abortion illegal). Oh my word, this man couldn't build a culture of bacteria. He also wants to limit the use of human embryos in research. I'm definitely not with the President on this one. Embryo Schmembryo. The plane is coming. De plane! De plane! Sorry, but that's all for now.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Part Three

I've thought about the Iraqi elections more, and my opinion has darkened. As much as I would like to see something nice happen in Iraq, my bigger concern is the validation and further promulgation of The Bush Doctrine. The Bush Doctrine is the worst thing that's happened to the world in the past several decades. It says that the U.S. (read: any country) can attack another country if they see that country as a threat--even if they turn out to be wrong. Its apt acronym of "TBD" is an ominous pun. The fate of the world is to be determined by this Doctrine. People who don't fear The Bush Doctrine are people who assume that the U.S. has only the best intentions for everybody. That is naive and just plain wrong. No country should be allowed to do its foreign business as The United States has in the past few years. Granted, most of the world is savvy enough to know that this Doctrine is a crock of shit. However, few countries are evolved enough to opt out of this new doctrine should an opportune moment arise. The glimmering success of Democracy in Iraq would very likely result in a tacit endorsement of The Bush Doctrine. The Bush Doctrine's endorsement worldwide is worse than anything I could imagine. While we may have toppled a totalitarian regime and replaced it with a representative government, but in so doing we are creating a worse totalitarian regime. Please feel free to disagree.

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