Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Oct. '23 Tweets-of the month 9er whatever the heck they're al-calling them these days"


• Men who fantasize about giving themselves oral sex are chasing pipe dream

• Engaging a popular search engine just to find out if some former child star or other B-list celebrity is still alive ought to be called, “Ghoul-gling"

• When I was a young heathen, I feared my choices meant I’d be going to Hell. How naive. I read the news and realize my foolishness. I’m not going to Hell. Hell’s coming to I’ve pondered the meaning of life. I’ve wondered what it all means. Today, I wrestle with a question more enigmatic than either. In order to uphold PC guidelines regarding gender designation, which pronouns should I use to refer to a man whose name is Ben Hur?•• 

• Our car horns today have two emotions: anger and recognition. I predict car horns of the future will be able to signal joy, commiseration, sullenness, consternation, euphoria and will prove so popular, some patient drivers will master the ability to play tunes to serenade other drivers stuck in massive traffic jams caused by drivers too distracted by their creativity to bother paying even momentary attention to what’s happening on the road.

• I was taught we’re all inhabitants of Planet Earth. But I took a good look around. What did I see? Over-crowded conditions. Cries of injustice. Unspeakable violence. Gangs rule. People who swear they don’t belong here. This isn’t a planet, it’s a prison. And we’re not inhabitants, we’re inmates. And we’re all born with life sentences. No escape. No parole. Now, I’m just doin’ my time, man. Just doin’ my time.

 • Calling money the root of all evil sells evil short. Money is the trunk, the bark, the branches, the buds, leaves and mother pollen of ALL evil. Given my understanding of this insidious truth makes what I’m about to ask all the more awkward. Uh, can you gimme some? I’ve been a little light lately, impoverished as I am by my fiscal purity.

• Doomsday AI report says in 15 years the technology will be the dominant force on the planet, impervious to even the most mighty armies. Most dominant? Don't believe it. There's no way they'll ever subdue the pickleballers.

• It'døIt's like the whole world is choking on a great big hate cookie so chunky there ain't no one with loving arms long enough to Heimlich the sucker loose.

• I’m not exactly bragging and I’d be mortified if it is brought up at my funeral, but more and more it’s looking like one of my life’s greatest achievements is I’ve never once dunked my phone in the toilet — and I drink a Lot of bourbon. Heck, I know some bourbon drinkers whose phones never leave the toilet.

 • We’re all at least a little leery of Artificial Intelligence, but I’d really like to see what the most advanced AI program comes up with after it’s been asked: “How do we end the Middle East wars?” I’ll be very disappointed if the AI answer is, “Kill everyone who disagrees with you.”

• Light pollution is becoming so glaring soon one of the major sources of light pollution will be from a vast earth-bound network of artificial lights  projected into the heavens and used to simulate what stars looked like before all this light pollution stole true starlight from the skies.

• I have a vague understanding that the phrase “the worm has turned” means things have changed. Given that, I wish I didn’t automatically begin hearing the GPS voice in my head saying that the worm is re-routing

• Telling a male contortionist to go eff himself is pointless. Your insult is their bucket-list. 

• How can we with a straight face allow a field of study known as “Political Science” be taught in schools when about 50 percent of the country supports a party that doesn’t believe in science. Politics, with its characters, plot twists, theatrics, etc. is more art than science. Of course, that same party burns books and sneers at art so what are you gonna do?

• Think you’re invested in the big game today? I foresee a day in the very near future where we’ll be glued to our sets watching armies of AI robots engineered to preserve humanity vs. armies of AI robots engineered to annihilate us. Incredibly with the stakes being what they are, the conflict will find time to televise a mind-numbing number of truck, beer & Male ED ads. “Here We Go, Robbies! Here We Go!” 

• Some people react to insult by responding in kind. Others resort to violence. These people say they don't get mad, they get even. What do I do?  I usually sneak up behind my antagonist and make goofy faces behind their backs. So I don't get mad. I don't get even.  I get oddSome people react to insult by responding in kind. Others resort to violence. These people say they don't get mad, they get even. What do I do?  I usually sneak up behind my antagonist and make goofy faces behind their backs. So I don't get mad. I don't get even.  I get odd.

• I’ll probably need ti have it explained to me by someone with puppets, but isn’t doing something “behind someone’s back” doing it to their front?

• Revenge, it is said, is a dish best served cold. And that’s the only thing revenge will ever have in common with ice cream.

• ˆI wonder if deer meteorologists ever feel frustrated. You know, "I correctly forecast it was going to be cold and I didn't see any deer wearing coats, gloves or scarves. I told 'em it was going to rain and I didn't see a single deer carrying an umbrella. I'm just not getting through. Where is the disconnect?”

• There are just 130 known original photographs of Abraham Lincoln, one of the most consequential humans in history. For perspective, some pet lovers will take that many of their cat sleeping this one weekend.

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Biting the hand that feeds me


I don’t know if it’s a latent burst of proper manners or just another condition of my condition, but in the last five or so years nothing infuriates me more than a cold rejection of my offers of good cheer.

It happens anytime I reach out with simple humanity to a stranger and my gesture is rebuffed.

I wonder if I’m taking to heart too literally the lessons of “Lonesome Dove,” the 1989 cowboy saga that is arguably the greatest Western ever filmed.

In one compelling scene Capt. Woodrow Call of the Texas Rangers sees some ruffians trying to steal a horse belonging to one of his men. Call, in a righteous fury, wheels his mount and races down a crowded street right into the altercation.

And he proceeds to kick ass. And ribs. And balls. His powerful boot neglects no part of the human anatomy.

Then, to the onlookers’ horror, he grabs a blacksmith’s stout branding iron and gives it a tap on the anvil. His intention is clear.

“He’s killing him!” shouts one alarmed observer.

Call’s amigos reign him in in the nick of time. His sanity resumes and he recognizes the crowd’s mortification. He straightens his cowboy hat and explains without a hint of remorse, “I hate rude behavior in a man. I won’t tolerate it.”

And then, adios, it’s back to the herd.

That’s just how Capt. Woodrow Call rolls. Some men get mad. Some get even.

All day yesterday, I felt the Call in me rising. I hate rude behavior. Won’t tolerate it.

So what happened?  Someone try to steal my horse?

No, they ignored my chummy email.

And because I’ll not lower myself to target small game, this was an executive editor for the prestigious publisher that has bought my book on Parkinson’s, “The Art of Living Suddenly: How to Deal with a Parkinson’s Diagnosis (and other things that suck).”

It had taken a literary agent three years to cajole the deal.

So this is me biting the hand that feeds me. Me being hyper-sensitive to a perceived slight. Me not seeing the big picture.

It’s me being me!

But once the contracts were signed, I felt entitled to a call from an editor welcoming me aboard. Just maybe a 90-second howdy-doo that would let me puzzle out if I was dealing with a human or a robot programmed to subsist on fancy lattes.

Clearly, I’d have been better off with the robot. No robot could be so rude.

I’ll spare you the details of the back and forth, but things so quickly escalated between me and this powerful editor that I could no longer contain my inner Woodrow Call.

I decided I would rather deep six the opportunity than have to deal with this woman.

I decided to burn the bridge it had taken years to construct.

Here’s what I wrote:

—  <<  >>  —

“I think it’s useful to recall that what led us to this testiness are two letters of introductory good cheer from me to you. The first you ignored, the second you mocked. I don’t know what would happen if I wrote a third. Maybe you’d hop on a plane, come to my house and spit on me.

“I was seeking just a hint of collegial encouragement to let me know my approach to this highly personal story was working. I was hoping to have this reassurance before immersing myself for the next eight or so weeks in a project from which I’d receive only a pittance for perhaps a year (Note: advance is $1,500. Just $1500).

“Understand, those parameters would have been challenging if this were a book about the highs and lows about my Tuesday evening bowling league (Note: I made this up for color; there is no bowling league).

“But, no, this is a book about me battling a disease that leads many to commit suicide. That’s not in my playbook. Not yet. No, I’ve chosen to look at the rosy side of things and exalt how the human spirit can revive even in the most bleak and despairing of circumstances.

“And from my innocuous introductory letters all I get from you is brusque sarcasm.

“So, no, I won’t be doing this book with you.

“But you’ve unwittingly made a key contribution to the story.

“I can now write a chapter declaring I now find Parkinson’s less fearsome than before.

“How bad can it be?

“Can’t be much worse than trying to be friendly with Melissa Smith (Note: not her real name).”

—  <<  >>  —

I never hit send on the note. Two influentials persuaded me it would be a mistake.

But, fear not,  I’ll exact my revenge. I hate rude behavior in an editor. I won’t tolerate it.

So anytime I’m forced to read an e-mail or talk to her on the phone, I’ll mockingly prance around the room pretending I’m her and she’s a real crabby old bitch.

It’s jut how I roll. 

Some men get mad. Some men get even.

I get odd.

We’re talking downright peculiar.