9/29/2006

Indignation -- the vice of our generation

Lately my attention has fixed on a fascinating human disposition: indignation. In my last post I expressed my longing for an effective hate-word for white people. I mused that "honkey" and "cracker" were both fashionable slang. They sound hip and cool; therefore they are ineffective as they fail to elicit the desired response -- indignation. Even as I was snapping the next bullet mark, my mind was churning over honkeys and crackers. Why don't they give offense? That's their intent. When you make a wrong turn, wind up driving down Harlem Avenue and hear a roadside projects resident yell "you crachah-ass honkey," he's not paying you a compliment. Believe it or not, he's expressing hostility (and registering his complaint on the off-chance you're the banker who repossessed his family's farm home.) So a word desinged to offend is failing to disgruntle its target audience. What's happening here?

An important idea resided in that bulleted quip. And this cracker was going to get to the bottom of it, right after he called his broker, mailed a birthday card to The Man, and smeared some more mayonnaise on the sandwich he was eating.

At once the answer struck me. White people simply decided not to find the term offensive -- regardless of its intent. We didn't all sit down together and have a formal meeting on the matter. Independently we all decided that these terms don't rise to the level of offense. Some of us went a step further and decided to find these terms fashionable. In doing so we rendered the epithets harmless. We defanged them. Whites have effectively immunized themselves to epithets by resolving not to take offense. Could it be that simple? Can people simply decide not to take offense to offensive behavior? Could renouncing indignation go beyond epithets and into other points of conflict? If so, what are the implications? Could resolving not to take offense be the foundation of world peace? Of inner-peace?

Forget about epithets for a moment and take a macro-view. Look at entire cultures. It's fair to say that the more indignant the culture -- that is, the more likely it is to take offense -- the bigger the pain in the ass it is to the rest of the planet. Tip-toeing around indignant people is exhausting, painstaking work that rarely succeeds in keeping the peace. That's the disconcerting thing about indignant cultures: the more you yield to their sensibilities, the more sensitive they become, so that pin drops cause earthquakes. That's why America is having such trouble getting into the rest of the world's good graces. By merely wearing tennis shoes, eating Big Macs and giving our movies happy endings we've pissed off three-forths of Europe. And I don't need to enumerate the number of ways the successful sit-com Will and Grace agitates the Middle East. The Food Network alone has most of the countries in Africa frothed. We've got like 2 countries on the planet who don't hate us yet -- Canada and Australia. And we're one mocking "eh" away from Canada beating us to a pulp with their hockey sticks and snow shoes. As far as Australia goes, let's just thank our lucky stars that sting ray wasn't an American citizen. Anyway, there's so much indignation out there, we can hardly degrade the ozone layer without somebody planning our demise. Just what are we supposed to do?

If indignation is a threat to foreign affairs, it's cancer to personal relationships. The more indignant the person is, the more annoying he is. You know whom I'm talking about. This is the person who throws a shit-fit because the guy in front of him ordered his Whopper with no onions (Have it YOUR way, mother fucker! Not the douche-bag-behind-you's way!). Indignant people suck. Conversely, whom do you admire most? Whoever he is, he's forgiving, even magnanimous, bigger then the petty offensive bullshit the rest of us fret over. He doesn't have the patience to nurture indignation over stupid shit like whether somebody was talking on a cell phone when he cut him off in traffic, or whether Clay Aiken met with more success in the music industry than Bo Bice. [I'll just have to get over it. That twerp Clay Aiken is selling millions of records an swimming balls-deep in adolescent cooter. Bo Bice is going down on the landlord for a week's rent. You got such pretty long hair, Bo. Now suck it before I have you evicted.]

Indignation is an encumbrance. You're forever having to become angry, to fight the good fight, to defend the honor of this and that. For instance, you have to declare your moral outrage every time someone at work takes a second bagel "before everybody has had a chance to get one." Relax, Denise. I'm eating the onion bagel. Nobody ever wants the onion bagel, you busy-bodied twat. I'm not suggesting that feeling anger from time to time is detrimental. You naturally feel anger when you rack your head on a shelf, learn your car battery is dead or clog the shitter. It's indignation -- anger with the component of perceived injustice -- that's detrimental to one's relationships with others and to one's own mental health.

The more indignant one is, the more vulnerable to manipulation one is. After all, what's more tempting than annoying somebody? When somebody gives you the power to annoy them, it obligates you to seize the opportunity. Remember the one neighbor who posted a KEEP OFF THE GRASS sign on his lawn? Remember how you would make a point of playing Smear the Queer with seven of your buddies on his lawn just because of that sign? Case in point. Did you ever ding-dong-ditch the house belonging to the easy-going hippie? No. You hit the cranky old lady at the end of the street who was always shooing you off her segment of the sidewalk. She's the one who got the flaming bag of poo on Halloween, or was it Christmas Eve? Ah, I remember now. It was both. Looks like Comet left you a flaming bag of his own Christmas sentiment, Mrs. Anderson.

For both personal and geo-political reasons, we must renounce indignation. But refusing to become indignant doesn't mean becoming others' punching bag. During the Second World War, we had a problem with the Germans. We didn't become indignant and lather ourselves into a righteous frenzy over their ambitions to conquer the region and persecute millions of Jews. We simply recognized that Germany had become the boisterous drunk at the end of the bar and we needed to kick his ass to sober him up. In fact, if we immobilized ourselves with indignation, wringing our hands over "the injustice of it all," we may have lost the war. Instead, our attitude was , Yep, looks like we need to go over there and kick the shit out of them. During the entire Atlantic campaign, American soldiers were known for their cheerful dispositions. Contrast this with French soldiers who became so indignant over German occupation that they could barely muster any contempt for American liberating forces dying to recapture French freedom. American soldiers' ability to maintain their sense of humor under the most miserable of circumstances was the key to their success. I think it was Buddha who said, If you can laugh while you're kicking the crap out of somebody, you're a truly enlightened being. Amen.

I believe the heaping pile of indignation Christianity carried around for so long gave rise to the contempt many have for it nowadays. Christianity damns a lot of normal, harmless behavior and does so in righteous indignation. For a long time, this was a pain in the butt to everyday folks, who felt moved to question the Church. Martin Luther had to meet the Pope in the Thunderdome just to back the Church off. Two Christians enter; one Christian leaves. But Christianity is relaxing its indignation. Take Catholics for example. Many non-Cathoilcs denounce the entire doctrine of Catholicism because 1/100 of one percent of priests may have victimized children. Forget the wonderful virtues Catholicism teaches. Forget the millions of Catholics who live virtuous lives, care for their neighbors, give generously to those less fortunate, and have the good sense to whip their children with wooden spoons when they sass the parents. Father O'Reilly touched a kid's pecker. So screw the lot of them. Catholics appear to be taking the criticism in stride. No crusades the last time I checked. They're learning to let go of indignation. Meanwhile, if you sneeze on the Koran you could start a holy war. So with organized religion, too, we need to tone down the sense of indignation.

Let's do our best to squelch indignation from our collective psyche. How dare you not agree?

9/26/2006

Never run out of bullets

  • I just bought a19-inch windscreen monitor. I especially like the widescreen feature. All the girls' boobs are higher and wider -- just how you want them.
  • I wonder if we'll ever become comfortable enough with the idea of death that we bring our dead relatives' corpses to the taxidermist for stuffing. I'm not kidding. I'm serious. Consider how we save pictures and other mementos of the deceased. We cherish these items once they're gone. Why not hold onto the real thing?
  • Computer technology: Computers keep getting smaller. Monitors keep getting bigger, so our systems take up the same space. Chips keep getting faster but software keeps growing heavier. Hardware keeps getting cheaper but we spend the savings shopping online with the affordable computer we just bought. Computers are increasing our productivity but we burn the saved time blogging and surfing. This is why computers are wonderful toys, but they don't make any progress.
  • The only difference between soup and stew is the amount of water in the can. The only difference between Yasmine Bleeth and Pamela Anderson is the amount of cans in the water.
  • Hiking the other day, I pointed to a nearby insect and shouted to my wife, "Look. It's a walking stick." The insect retorted, "Hey look. It's a hiking homo." So I stepped on the little bastard.
  • Remember the good old days when anti-Semitism was a bad thing?
  • Speaking of ethnic hatred, I've been waiting for an effective, vulgar slang for white people. We've got cracker and honkey, but those are actually pretty cool. Say this aloud to yourself right now: I's a crazy crackah, yo. See? It sounds cool. I like it. In fact, I'm thinking of renaming my blog The Crazy Cracker. The whole point of a derogatory epithet is the objective person not liking it. Hopefully the government has commissioned a study on this so we can finally get our hate-word.
  • Years ago I would have bet everything I owned that as time passed, Richard Greico would become way bigger than his 21-Jumpstreet costar, Johnny Depp. I also predicted Will and Grace would be cancelled during its first season. This is why I don't gamble. Incidentally, think how much better the world would be if my predictions above were true. Greico for President!
  • How come you can sleep without wetting or crapping the bed, but you still fart with reckless abandon? You'd think that while you're in sleep mode, the valves are either on or off.

9/22/2006

PC v. Mac in a steel cage match

You people are lucky I'm still talking to you. Since my last post, I evolved into a more advanced species: the Mac user. My new Mac is great fun, but what I like the most is the opportunity to peer down my nose at PC users and remind them how pathetic their computing life is. Watching a PC user struggle to operate Windows reminds one of watching daytime talk show guests struggle with compound sentences. Mouth-breathers. If you PC users must retaliate in the comments section, remember to type slowly. I wouldn't want your browser to freeze. That would break my heart.

I kid, I kid. The embarrassing truth is, my own stupidity led me to buy a Mac. I was gaming on my PC when the fan clicked on. It often clicks on during heavy computing loads. The problem was, it never turned off, even after I quit all applications. I restarted the computer. Unplugged it. Shook it. Kicked it. Immersed it water. I even tried a Zimbabwean witch doctor voodoo heart-stopper ritual. Nothing doing. On the plus side, I have a spent chicken carcass to throw in the crock pot.

The internal fan is small, but when it revs up it emits a high-ptiched whine. It's loud. It's so loud that I stop using my computer when it activates. I hate the sound of that fan. Why does a computer need a fan, anyway? It's not like the chips are doing jumping jacks or something. There are no moving parts. I sweat my balls off all summer in front of that computer. Why does the chip get its own fan? Toughen up, Chip. There are millions of chips overheating in China and they don't have fans.

I realized that my computer was useless as long as the fan blew. I'd have to disable it. Lacking any options in Device Manager, I'd have to go on a hardware reconnaissance mission and take out the bogey. I accessed the inside of my box and located the fan -- still blowing like Elton John. Three wires ran from the circuit board to the fan. Which one to cut? It was like those action movies where the hero has to decide which wire to cut to diffuse the bomb. I decided on the black wire. First, I unplugged the box (I'm not that dumb). Then I cut the wire. Snip. Mission accomplished. I was a little nervous when I plugged in and turned on the box, but when I watched it boot as usual, I knew I made the right choice. And yes, I successfully disabled the fan. I should apply for a job at my local bomb squad. I'm that good.

Ten minutes later my computer crashed hard. I couldn't get it to turn on again. I zapped a chip or something. Maybe it overheated. Or the computer sensed the fan was disabled and became indignant. But the thing was dead. Oops. Again, it was like that movie where the hero has to diffuse the bomb by cutting the wire, only when he cuts it, it speeds up the countdown timer and now they're all really fucked. Nice going, hero. Say, there are some kids on respirators at the hospital. Maybe you'd like to visit them and trip over the power cords.

A more patient man, a more deliberate man, a brighter man would have fixed the fan problem with less drastic measures. I am not patient, deliberate or all that bright. But I knew the worst possible scenario had me buying a shiny new computer. And when that scenario presented itself, I figured, why not switch to a Mac? Those mini-Macs are affordable. The Intel-Duos pack a pretty big punch. And they come in this cute, little lunch box-sized case. Sleek. Elegant. Sexy.

My Mac is sweet-ass sweet. I was intimidated at first. I abhor crude, sexual innuendo. But do you remember when you were still a virgin and you landed a date with a fast, older girl who obviously had gone all the way? I felt like that guy; I knew I had chores to do, but I had no idea where to start. Luckily, what takes months of trial-and-error in Windows takes mere hours in Mac. By nighttime I had my Mac purring like a kitten and asking me whether I was going to call her back the next day. Mac is a well thought-out, easy-to-use and clever product. Mac is the Ron Popeil Rotisserie Oven of computers. Get this. Some little Mac-nerd at Comp USA was trying to sell me a $150 Applecare package. One-hundred and fifty dollars so I can call Mac and ask them questions. My first question would be, "So, are you still laughing at me for spending $150 to chat with you?" This Mac-nerd wouldn't give up. Finally I had to threaten his life. Actually, I said to him, "Look, I survived Windows without calling Microsoft. I'll survive OS X without calling Mac." He acquiesced and sold me my mini-Mac.

One neat feature is Mac's version of the task bar. They call it a "dock." The icons in the dock bounce up and down when you activate them. It's cute. Currently I'm searching the Internet for icons in the form of boobs and buttocks. I'm going to have my desktop "dock" looking like Black Entertainment Television after-hours. Pop that proggie. Pop, pop that proggie baby...

Here's another cool feature I stumbled on: Text-to-speech software. It has a lady's voice that will say whatever you type. I don't see why guys spend all that dough on 900-numbers when you can get a Mac, type a script, lie back and enjoy. What's that you say, dear? My penis is the biggest you've seen? Oh, you flatter me. Well, it is pretty impressive...

Mac also features a Force Quit function so that if a program nods off on you, you can get rid of it peacefully. And it actually works. Have you ever had a Windows app freeze on you? I'd sooner try to navigate my genitalia out of a cactus patch than escape a Windows app freeze-up. THE PROGRAM HAS STOPPED RESPONDING. No shit. I figured that out when the hourglass ran out of fucking sand! Can I have my computer back now?

I'll report more as I continue to explore my new SmackIntosh. So far, however, it's impressed the crap out of me. Then again, it's easy to impress a guy who cuts wires at random to "fix" a computer problem. So take my endorsement lightly, you CNTL-ALT-DELeting crackah.

9/19/2006

Some more Bullet-ins

  • I know why breakfast foods taste so good for dinner: because you're doing something wrong. That always feels good. It's like cheating on a math test, smoking in the boys' room or getting a blow-job under the bleachers. Doing something wrong feels so right. So go ahead. Pour yourself a bowl of Count Chocula. Toss a Pop Tart in the toaster over. You dirty little minx, you. Tomorrow morning, pour yourself a vodka martini. Keep a theme going.
  • I took my daughter put-put golfing today. Entering the course, I spotted a sign declaring “CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES STRICTLY PROHIBITED.” So we haven't started golfing yet and I'm already breaking the rules. I wondered why Golf-n-Stuff prohibits alcohol. Maybe it's because everybody has a weapon in the form of a putter. Imagine catching a putter in the temple from a drunken Chi Chi Rodriguez. Ay caramba! Additionally, Golf-n-Stuff doesn't want to catch some dipshit storming through the miniaturized town screaming “I'm Godzilla,” or simulating sex acts with the larger-than-life theme park animals, or urinating spent Keystone Light in the koi pond. Now that I think of it, the no-alcohol rule is good policy. (Thanks, Mist1!)
  • In the 1970's, America created a Misery Index whose components were inflation, unemployment and millions-of-Bee-Gee-records-sold. I'm not sure how they calculated it exactly. Anyway, today we need a new index to measure the aggregate economy. Evidently, no amount of growth, productivity, unemployment or inflation is good enough as long as George Bush is in the White House. So I propose a Starbucks Index. We calculate the percentage of people dropping $4.80 on a cup of coffee at least twice per week. Then we tell the nation to stop whining because times are good when you're drinking 5-dollar coffee. In fact, a culture with terms like “anytime minutes,” “wi-fi hotspot,” and “discount plasma screen TV” has no right complaining about hard times.
  • I read somewhere that 9-million prison rapes take place every year. Remember, some guys go to prison for tax evasion, DUI's or attempting to vote twice in the same election. Not everybody is a violent offender. Yet the phrase “prison rape” is often the punch-line for a joke -- not something to protest. People don't feel sorry for inmates. Break the law, get anally raped -- often by a well-endowed person of color. That's our motto. In fact, every day you're in prison, your very life is in danger. Somebody hocks a couple cartons of cigarettes for some toilet wine, the next thing you know there's a shank in your kidney. Remind me what's so awful about GITMO. God forbid I go to prison someday. If the worst that happens to me is being walked on a leash and putting women's panties on my head, I figure I'll be as lucky as the average Powerball Lottery winner. Hello, Bubba. You can wipe your ass with pages of my Bible anytime you please. Just don't “become familiar” with me.
  • Tires wear down over time. But the only place you drive your car is on the road. Shouldn't the road be coated in tire rubber? Where does the rubber go?
  • I don't see why we need to wear seatbelts when there's plenty of Velcro out there. I think Volvo should look into the first Velcro safety system. Polyester pants and Velcro seating: the perfect marriage.
  • I feel sorry for The Thing. He's an important part of The Fantastic Four, but he doesn't even get a uniform. Instead, he's made of rocks. Also, the other heros get incredible super-powers: flame throwers, telekinesis, invisibility. The Thing is basically a big Chia Pet without the plant growth. Who writes this comic? Yeah, there's this forth guy who's made of rocks. He doesn't need a cool name or anything. What was that one thing I was thinking of calling him? Ah, that's it. The Thing. Poor Thing. He's the Fantastic Four's version of the Pet Rock. If I ever meet The Thing, the first thing I'm going to ask him is, How do you know when you've got a boner?
  • For those of you in the dating scene, pay attention to how your date drinks. You're looking for someone who keeps with one kind of booze the entire night. If a girl can't take the advice of sticking with one liquor the entire night, she certainly won't take that same advice when it comes to men. Incidentally, it's a myth that sticking to one kind of liquor all night will prevent a hangover. If you're sticking to any kind of alcoholic beverage all night, you've got a hangover in your future. It's the all-night that causes hangovers, not mixing liquors.

Attention, Super-Nerd: I know The Thing isn't made of rocks. His skin is a composite of space-age scales. Also, he has superhuman strength and endurance. It's a joke. Shouldn't you be masturbating to a science book in your parents' basement?

9/15/2006

More rejects

Here are some more rejects. It's the last batch. I promise.

Car maintenance and personal hygiene


My car demands too much attention. I have to check the mileage, the tire pressure, the fluid levels, the filters. I have to change the oil every 3000 miles, rotate the tires, tune up the engine, check it for a hernia, and several other maintenance tasks. Plus, I have to wash and wax the damn thing. They call them automobiles, but they don't do anything automatically! A newborn baby isn't as demanding as a Buick.

I should take care of my own body as well as my car. I'm still trying to floss my teeth on a regular basis. Oil changes every three months? I have laundry in my hamper that hasn't been washed in 3 months! My car is going to have to toughen up and use the oil it already has.

My car has a digital compass. What good is knowing which way is north when you're completely fucking lost? It gives you a sense of control over chaos, I guess. My car also has a navigation system that talks. If I ever get so lost that I need to ask my car where we're going, than I'm going to ask which way to the nearest cliff so I can drive off of it. Guess what, North Star. We're heading over a cliff. I'm going to jump out at the last second and then call my insurance company. What are your plans? Or maybe I'll ask North Star where's the closest topless bar. North Star, is Mandy Mountains working the night shift this evening at the Jug Shack?


Expressing yourself

Whenever someone wants to describe the sex act delicately, they use the term "expressing yourself sexually" or "expressing your sexuality." These terms soften the blow.

Screw that. When I'm eating, I'm not "expressing my hunger." I'm eating! When I'm drinking, I'm not "expressing my thirstiness." I'm drinking diet soda. And when somebody's "expressing their sexuality," it means they're fucking. Balls on these sex-ed teachers. They'll pull a condom over a piece of fruit without flinching, but they shy away from a word.



Dreadmills

I enjoy exercise. But I'll never understand the treadmill. Who subjects himself to this torture voluntarily? What must he be thinking? “You know, I want the mind-bending tedium and joint trauma of a long jog, but I'd rather forgo the pleasant weather and beautiful scenery that accompanies an outdoor run. I think I'll jump on the treadmill. Running without any recreational component whatsoever -- that's what I'm after. I can pound my heels, sweat and stare at my bedroom wall for 40 minutes.”



Give paint a chance

We should fight wars with paint ball guns. Follow me on this. Let's say two countries have to go to war. They would both agree to paint ball warfare -- understanding that what one can do with paint balls, one could do with bullets. Therefore, if a country lost at paint ball, it would lose a conventional war with real bullets, too, and they'd have no reason to fight.

We could restock all our conventional weaponry with paint: paint bullets, paint bombs, paint artillery, paint tanks, even paint grenades. Instead of killing each other, we'd just leave a sharp sting, a fluorescent splash of orange and an acute loss of dignity. We could look forward to conflicts, because going to war would be fun.

We could even go to war with countries that aren't a threat, just a pain in the ass. Imagine invading France with 9 divisions of soldiers armed with paint ball guns. Blow the freggin' croissants right out of their snooty hands. I'm going to coat that limp wrist of yours in purple paint, Pierre.

Also, the losing country has to pay the winner's cleaning bills.



What the fizz?

If you're like me, when pouring soda into a glass, you become impatient and pour too much, too fast. I'm nothing if not a man of etiquette. So here's my question: do you look like less of a fool if you dive into the foam head and try to suck it down to prevent overflow, or if you let nature take its course and let Dr. Pepper foam over the cup and all over the table? I guess either way it's a crap sandwich. I'll just have to learn to be more patient.



Available in your frozen food section

I usually shop while hungry and hunger turns me into a simpleton. The frozen food section at the grocery store often makes me its dupe. Inasmuch as the stripper on the pole can be my girlfriend if I just keep slipping dollar bills in her underwear, the $4 Hungry Man Turkey and Giblets will taste as good as it looks on the box. Wishful thinking.

How about those pictures they put on the TV dinner box? Look at those delicious entrees! The sight of that stuff would moisten Julia Child's biscuit. Look at that marinated pork loin! Did Emeril take a job at Swanson's?

Then you cook that little number up in the microwave. Burn your fingers and cuss while peeling the plastic wrap from the tray, and get ready for... disappointment. Somehow, flash-freezing turned your salisbury steak into a warmed-over buffalo chip! How about those painted-on grill marks. Yeah, I'm sure Earl cooked this steak over an open-flame barbecue at the factory. More likely somebody took a rejected slab of grade-D beef and ran a Sharpie Marker over it a few times. Nice try, Swanson's!

The picture on the box depicts a best-possible-scenario frozen dinner. What you usually get is a semblance of what you thought you were buying. I think they call them TV dinners because you're better off paying attention to the TV than to what you're eating.

Bon appetite, dipshit consumer.


And Don't Forget...

It's Here!
Fireflies in the Meadow
by Alpha Johnson

Now you can read Lightning Bug's Butt anywhere. This book has over 120 pages of easy-to-read print, featuring a year's worth of Lighting Bug's Butt posts and some never-before published material.

If you like what you read, you can take this book to bed with you (try doing that with your laptop!). If you hate it, you have a book to fling across the room (again, try that with your laptop). Or you can rip out the satin-smooth pages and use them for bathroom tissue.

Give a copy as a gift to someone special. Stuff one under the leg of a wobbly coffee table. Keep one near the crapper. Wield it to kill household insects. Or kindle your fireplace. Hand one into your professor as your doctoral thesis. Read it with your lover as a therapeutic sex aide. Make it the religious text of the new cult you're founding. Get it for whatever reason you please. Just get your copy today!

9/13/2006

My Toyota and me

Toyotas are amazing cars. They run forever. Toyotas are a freakish triumph of mechanical engineering. Sometimes I contemplate subjecting my Toyota to various traumas to see whether it would survive. Maybe I'll put some sand in the gas tank or light it on fire -- in the name of science. I'd enjoy finding the physical limitations of this fine automobile. Maybe I'll enter my Toyota in a tractor-pull. Sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY... See LBB's Toyota Corolla tow 40,000 pounds with nothing but sand in the gas tank and the engine lit on fire. Tickets available at Ticketron.

My Toyota mystifies and sometimes frightens me. Late at night I sneak into my garage and pop the hood. I'm looking for evil spirits that make the car go with their black magic. I haven't found any spirits yet. But once I lubricate my garage door so it doesn't squeak and sound a warning, I'll catch those little, Japanese evil spirit bastards. I won't harm them. After all, they're making my Toyota run and whatnot. Why ruin a good thing just because I don't understand it? I'm comfortable with the unknown and mysticism.

American and European cars have gremlins in them who labor to fuck things up. Those gremlins are first-rate saboteurs. They often deploy wads of bubble gum and super-glue for gumming up the engine and critical components. This is why GM's and Ford's stock are in the shitter. Like a Rock. If I owned an American car or a European shitbox car, I wouldn't bother changing the oil or tuning-up the engine. The gremlins are too smart for those tricks. They'll outflank you with a wad of Big League Chew in the crankcase. Instead I'd spray the motor down with bug poison. Choke on it, Bezilictine the Gremlin. Once the gremlins are dead, your car will run great, unless you failed to kill all the gremlin eggs. I'm a big believer in preventative maintenance.

Or you can just buy a Toyota. People who drive Toyotas don't worry about gremlins. Their biggest worry is dreaming up what dumb-shit, dangerous feat they're going to put their Toyota through next just because they can. Oooh, I just thought of something I can do. I'm going to race my Toyota through a firework factory in New Mexico -- after I light the Toyota on fire, of course. I'll have to check whether my insurance has a firework-factory clause. If they do, I'm cancelling. Anyway, I'll drive it just like those guys in The Fast and the Furious did. That movie, by the way, is realistic -- as long as all the featured cars are Toyotas. Otherwise it's just pure crap. How about Vin Diesel in that movie? “You owe me a 10-second car.” You owe yourself a bath and a better agent, Vin Diesel. Really, what an asinine request. Where could you possibly drive in 10 seconds? It takes me 10 seconds to find a station I like on the radio.

Back to my Toyota. It has a spoiler on the back. You've got to keep all that power on the ground, folks. I've got 1.8 liters of super-efficient, Japanese thunder under the hood. Fast. I'll have you know that with the accelerator pinned to the floor, if the left rear tire rolls over some gravel or a puddle of water, it'll break traction. Power. It even scares the evil spirits when I do that. I've chirped it a couple of times. Suck on that, Vin Diesel.

Look, I could go on and on about my Toyota, but you get the idea. Buy one and let it all hang out.

9/08/2006

More bullet-ins

  • Every once in a while I have the nagging suspicion that Windows is just one, big virus that replicates itself every few years.
  • Some people contemplate useless things like who is right, Israel or Palestine. I choose to contemplate more practical things like whom would I rather fuck: Mrs. Brady or Charro?
  • The aging 60's kids are abondoning their rock-and-roll pasts and settling on Jimmy Buffet. It's a natural part of aging and settling down. I wonder who my generation's Jimmy Buffet will be when we reach middle age. I hope it's not that James Blount fella. I'll kill myself if it is. “I saw your face in a crowded place...” That could have been a Wal-Mart for all we know, James.
  • Like you, I keep waiting for the legion of robots promised us when we were kids. Do you remember how robots were going to do everything for us in the future? I believe they're on the way. I hope, however, that the designers understand our priorities. Right off the bat we need 2 different kinds of robots: the ones that can fight on a military battleground, and other ones we can have sex with. Lots of problems solved right there.
  • When somebody gives me cuts in traffic, instead of that thank-you” wave, I'm trying something new. I make a pistol shot with my hand, “bang, bang,” then I wink. The driver usually acknowledges by rolling her eyes. Roger dodger.
  • I could never be a battlefield hero. Those soldiers are willing to die for a cause. That sounds romantic. But I'd chicken out at the last minute. It would be the same as when I go to an amusement park. On the drive up with my buddies, that new, 72-story-high roller coaster, The Scrotum Tightener, sounds like a great idea. But once we arrive and I'm craning my neck to look at it, I'd start in with “You know, I had a couple of tacos for lunch. I'm a little queasy. I'm gonna sit this one out. No, I'm not chicken. I'm just get motion sickness.”
  • I don't understand dying for a cause, anyway. To me, any cause that risks my life is more of an ambition than a cause. Maybe wishful thinking better sums it up.
  • Swear words are like liquor. I'm always looking for something stronger. I remember when exclaiming fuck would discharge a lot of anger. Now saying it feels like reciting scripture. Cunt used to hit the spot. But now it's sterile. I say cunt 17 times a day. I've built a tolerance. Before long gynecologists will be using cunt as medical terminology. I need something stronger. Any suggestions? Twat? Ah, maybe.

9/06/2006

Oriental Asians

I looked up “oriental” in a dictionary yesterday to learn whether one capitalizes the word. Browsing the “Usage Note,” I discovered using the noun “Oriental” can be offensive. That is, when one refers to an Asian person as an “Oriental,” one may as well toss a Styrofoam cup out one's car window. It's that offensive. This discovery shocked me, especially since I was planning to use “Oriental” to describe an “Asian,” with no malice in heart, I add. Honest Indian, I was surprised to discover that another perfectly innocent word had mutated into something offensive.

The discovery got me to thinking. Asians are the only demographic of people about whom you can still crack wise. But based on what I found in the dictionary, I figure I'd better hurry. Things are changing fast. Evidently some Asians have organized a victim-advocacy group. They've set their sights on word “Oriental.” That's the aggravating thing about political correctness: It always selects such trivial, stupid-shit causes. Oriental v. Asian? Are you kidding me? If politically correct people want to advocate for Asians, why don't they organize a posse and slay that Godzilla creature who keeps eating innocent Japanese people? Do something helpful for once. Symbolism over substance!

I know what you're thinking. Gosh, is LBB going to publish a post disparaging an entire demographic of people? Of course not. Unless it's the Polish. Vile creatures, those Poles. But I would like to investigate why it's still OK (or until recently, has been OK) to make fun of Asians. Don't argue that it's not OK. If you don't believe me, watch any comedy show on cable television. Asians are fair game. I'm not saying it's right. I'm just making the observation that it is. I want to know why. It strikes me peculiar. It seems to me that Asians have a more legitimate gripe than any other race. Most of them are starving. And that's saying a lot. There's like 1.3 billion Chinese people. In fact, I read that for every dollar of national debt, there are 2.3 Chinese kids going hungry. Wait a minute. That wasn't it. If you stacked all hungry Asian kids on top of each other, the pile would stretch to the moon and back 2.3 times. No, that doesn't sound right. Whatever the thing I read, know this: There's a fuckin' lot of Asian people over in Asia and they're going hungry. Seriously. And hunger isn't their only legitimate complaint. What about Japanese people? Sure, they eat pretty well since we started building McDonald's over there. But they are the only people on the entire planet who've been nuked. Say what you want about slavery; it beats living in a mushroom cloud. Mexicans? What's their gripe? They get thrown back over a wall a couple of times per year. No big whoop. Japanese are the only people on earth to be on the business-end of an atomic bomb. If these people want to start complaining, I'll microwave up some popcorn, take a seat and listen. They've got the right to complain. Also, it wasn't just military targets that tasted the wrath of Fat Man and Little Boy. Schoolhouses, residential homes, factories, rice paddies, karate dojos, karaoke bars -- they all took a hit. Atrocity. Think about this little slice of irony. That soldier who allegedly wiped his ass with a page of the Qur'an is looking at 12 years of hard labor. The guys who dropped two atomic bombs on Japanese cities have their pictures posted in museums. When they flew home to the states, they got all kinds of cooter. Real heroes' welcome. What gives here?

This is conjecture, but I believe the reason Asians don't enjoy the politically correct protection that other demographics do is because of the former's success in academic settings and in the job market. It's hard to feel sorry for somebody who 18 months prior jumped off a boat, thumbed through a few People magazines, mastered the language and now speaks it better than most English Lit. majors (he still can't pronounce it for shit, but he knows syntax and grammar like gangbusters). Then, while the rest of us are dropping out of college and racking up credit card debt, he's launched a multi-million dollar enterprise selling woks on the Home Shopping Network with a bikini-clad American honey under each arm. Admit it. It's hard feeling sorry for a guy like that. I know I don't.

So making fun of Asians is still relatively safe -- for now. But I live in fear of their uprising. Why? Because these people know karate. I know, I know. Just because somebody is Asian doesn't mean they're a black belt. But really, many do have some training in the martial arts. Even if only a few know karate, that would be enough. Have you ever watched those Bruce Li movies? One karate man can kick 37 guys' asses at the same time. Meanwhile, our kids have been pounding down Doritos while they play X-Box games in a pile of their own filth. We've got a nation whose children are battling an epidemic of gout, for Christ's sake. Who do you think is going to win in a fight -- Bruce Li or Super Mario?

That's something to think about, my round-eyed friend.

9/01/2006

Persecution Complex

I suffer from a mental pathology. I sometimes believe an invisible force is conspiring against me. I'm not alone. Many people labor under this delusion. To the extent you live your life fighting or evading this imaginary, malevolent force, you have what psychologists call a “persecution complex.” I believe the Persecution Complex is the most prevalent psychological affliction in America. I've got it. Maybe so do you.

Here's an example. I tried to maintain a lawn in my backyard. I was a regular Hank Hill. I had the mower, the fertilizer distributor thingy, the sprinkler system, hoes, trimmers, rakes -- I even took craps outdoors to increase the nitrate index of the soil. I told the neighbors our crappers were on the fritz. My wife entreated me to stop defecating outdoors and instead buy some manure. But why buy the cow when the crap is free? Anyway, I pampered that lawn. I should have had the prettiest lawn on the block. But I don't need to tell you how things turned out. My lawn looked as about healthy and fertile as Bea Arthur's cooter. Nothing but dead sprigs of grass. So I did what any sensible man would do. I threw a tantrum and then gave up. I uprooted the sprinkler system and buried all evidence of my pathetic lawn under 17 tons of decorative rock. Problem solved. After all, if the grass couldn't thrive with my tender, loving care, it certainly wouldn't grow through 4 inches of granite -- with no irrigation and complete neglect.

Wrong! Once the rock went down my grass became a genetically engineered super lawn. It took Jesus 3 days to rise from the dead. My lawn took about 45 minutes. I've got grass sprouting everywhere. It looks like a Cheech and Chong vineyard. My backyard has more unkempt patches than a 70s porn flick. I've even used vegetation killer -- literally poisoned my entire backyard, with no detriment to the grass. I may as well have been spraying vitamins. The unwanted grass grows like gangbusters -- now that I no longer want it.

Events like these cause me to wonder about that Force, that malevolent Force. What force? The Force that reverses whatever rule the minute you decide to obey it. The moment you become a believer, the priest touches the choir boy inappropriately and the pastor embezzles the collection plate. Hallefuckinluiah. That force. The Force.

Here's another example: college education. I fought the college rigmarole like inmates fight off the german shepards at Guantanamo. I resented all the bullshit college throws at you. Several years passed before I began college in earnest (showing for class, studying, etc.). Naturally I lived a subsistence lifestyle without a college degree. And every adult I met reminded me my that the lack of a formal education was to blame for my predicament. Fine. I'd go to college and graduate. Six years later I produced a bachelor's degree and jumped in a college graduate mosh-pit where we all slugged it out for a $28,000 per year cubicle. It turns out, I would have done better going to bartending college. That would have taken me 3 weeks and I wouldn't be a corporate stooge. Plus I wouldn't be cleaning pools on the weekend to make my student loan payments. But, had I not gone to college, I'd still be applying hand-jobs against my rent arrearages. You should have gone to college, they'd tell me. We'll I did. So where's my free freggin' lunch?

Did I tell you about my cherry flavored penis? Yep, the minute I married my dick became a dreamsicle. It must have. Ever since I said “I do,” all the ladies want to suck it. Don't mistake this for arrogance. I struck out with a million girls. I still have a few active restraining orders against me, in fact. When I was single I couldn't talk Courtney Love into going to bed with me if I had a Hummer-ful of lipstick and crank. I was human girl-repellent. Don't get me wrong. I love my wife and I definitely married the right girl. But I wouldn't have minded a few barflies buzzing around my cheese stick in the years before I took my nuptuals. Now that I'm married many women want to show me this neat trick they can do where they stretch their ankles behind their ears. These ladies are really talented and classy. They're just a little too late. If they ever invent a time machine, I'm teleporting these little tarts back to mom and dad's basement, then known as “my place.” It's going to be a Fuck-a-Rama at Mom and Dad's circa 1992. Jeez, I hope I'm smart enough to use protection. Imagine how badly it would suck to become a father retroactively. That's just my luck, too. Getting a chick pregnant with a load I can only remember shooting. What's my point? The invisible Force exists.

The above are crude examples. But you must know what I'm talking about. That invisible Force that conspires against you. You've seen it. You know of what I write. Maybe it's lurking behind you right now ready to freeze up your sure-to-be brilliant blog post after you click “Publish Post.” Did you ever notice that your computer freezes only when your work is important, like when you've just written something brilliant, or when you're desperately trying to close down 17 windows of porn when your spouse walks in the room? I'll bet not a single reader has ever had their computer freeze when a pop-up window offering 5.8% financing or a free month of AOL launches. The pop-ups always get through. The Force.

Remember what a fool you were for not investing in the stock market in the 80s and 90s? Remember how you started investing when you finally had some disposable income in the year 2000? What a plunge, huh? I'd have been better off investing my money in Chia Pets. Seriously, I'm going to call my broker next week, “Yeah, Marty. Put me down for 1500 units of Chia Cows and another 1000 in Chia HEADS. I've got a hunch about the Chia Head.” In fact, maybe I'll cover my backyard with Chia Heads. I'll have one green goddamn lawn then. I don't mean to go astray, but by now shouldn't Spencer's Gifts have introduced Chia Cooter? Chia Dong? There's a million-dollar idea. The Chia Armpit.

Here's another thing. I don't want to make anybody cringe, but why do you get diarrhea only when you're away from home? My theory? The Force just wants to see you sweat. The Force reserves constipation for when you're home. Then you have to burn all your "me time" on the crapper. Diarrhea would be a cinch at home. See how the Force thinks? What's next for me, Force? Are you going to afflict me with pink eye the next time I go whale watching?

And how about when you whack your head against a rectangular object and you always hit the corner. Nothing smarts like a pointed object driven into one's skull. There was a perfectly flat surface you could have whacked, but nope! The Force aimed the point into your head when you were'nt looking just to piss you off.

I could go on listing examples but I fear I'd bore you. I think I've made a convincing point. One must maintain a constant vigil against the Persecution Complex. It's essential to a happy life.