Stuck Inside of Peoria’s Suburbs with the Arden Forest Blues Again





Dear Abby, 
 
My girlfriend disses me 
when I put “thee” 
in my confessional poetry. 
 
“So Seventeenth Century,” 
she says, “the antithesis of hip, old-fashioned, out of time.”
 
which triggers 
            Bill Wyman’s bass line
                        in the juke box of my mind.
 
You’re out of touch my baby,
My poor old-fashioned baby,
I said baby, baby, baby, you’re out of time.
 
“No way you can publish this rubbish,”
she says, “too loosey goosey, sugar britches.
 
“Try not rhyming every other word. 
The syllables should interlock
like a choo-choo train,
and go chug-chug-chug-chugging,
in a straight line,
 
not go staggering 
               all over the page, 
like a sentimental drunk 
                smashed on Toostie Roll wine.”
 
Otherwise, she’s sweet as pie, my girlfriend,
and treats me nice. 
 
Any advice?
 
 
Signed,
 
Stuck Inside of Peoria’s Suburbs with the Arden Forest Blues Again
 
Dear Stuck,
 
A wise man once wrote:
 
A poem should be palpable and mute   
As a globed fruit,

Dumb
As old medallions to the thumb,

Silent as the sleeve-worn stone
Of casement ledges where the moss has grown—

A poem should be wordless   
As the flight of birds.
 
So, yeah, your GF has a point.


 

A Malcontented Blogger Turns His Back on Aggression: Roman Empire/Super Bowl Edition

If ever an event exists that epitomizes Late Empire decadence, it’s the Super Bowl, the trashy teenage illegitimate daughter of Walt Disney and Joan Rivers.

First, there’s the obscenity of the salaries of these gladiators who essentially entertain us through ritualistic war, a string of overhyped “battles,” each becoming less memorable as the Roman numerals march on into Super Bowl oblivion.  Admittedly, it can be fun to watch these impressive specimens of predatory machismo smash into one another, sidestep tackles, propel perfect spirals, and make acrobatic diving fingertip grabs (though their inability to master the snap count can become tedious).[1] Nevertheless, you can’t help but wonder if the over-compensation for these essentially physical skills is indicative of some sort of skewed cultural atavism that harkens back to Spartacus.  Why, for example, does the secondary coach of the Baltimore Ravens, whoever he is, earn considerably more per annum than Pulitzer winning novelist Richard Ford?  Not to mention Deion Sanders[2] whose career earnings undoubtedly dwarf Cormac McCarthy’s, Toni Morrison’s, and Philip Roth’s combined?

Because our priorities are fucked-up perhaps?[3]

Can you guess which house belongs to Deion Sanders and which to Robert Frost?

Second, there’s the Roman circus of the halftime show, which began innocently enough in the late Sixties with marching bands, but now features antediluvian rockers like Steve Tyler and the Who or commercial hiphoppers like the Black-Eyed Peas.  These performances nearly always end up flat (Prince and Springsteen being exceptions) and occasionally can be painful to watch (Grandpa Jagger frenetically cavorting back and forth across the stage as if it were strewn with red hot coals).[4]  I’m far too lazy to research the cost of these extravaganzas, but I suspect we could coax the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hahn to meditate on the artificial turf at halftime for free, which would be more entertaining than 90% of the halftime shows I’ve suffered through.

Brittany Spears passing gas at the 2008 spectacle

What, may you ask, binds together all of these facets of this undeclared national holiday – the verbal jostling of the interminable lead-ins (Terry Bradshaw bickering with Howie Long) – the game itself, the outsized attempt at halftime entertainment, the pratfalls of the commercials?

Aggression, that’s what.  Aggression is what separates the winners from the losers, those who pay sticker price from those who browbeat the salesperson into surrender, those who claw their way to the top from those who rely on honor and integrity to guide their lives, those who bury their helmets into the runner’s chest from those who wanly attempt an arm tackle.

Aggression is what fuels capitalism, and sports is a wonderful training ground for aggression, from the bestial grunting of tennis players returning volleys to the narcissistic celebratory endzone fandangoes of wide receivers.  These gladiators are worshipped in their high schools and wooed by head coaches who during recruiting banter with mothers they would never actually associate with otherwise. No wonder most professional football players possess Caligula-sized egos. These mannish boys have clawed their way to fame and fortune (the latter thanks in part to their labor unions).  

Who can blame them for copping the Conan the Barbarian look?

Mike Roemer Photography Inc

[1] When I played junior varsity football for the mighty Summerville Green Wave, we were so collectively stupid that we could only go on “hut one.”

[2] I had the misfortune to share an elevator with Deion once, who exuded all of the warmth of a Secret Service agent as he avoided eye contact with the children asking for his autograph.

[3] Here’s a longish quote copped from Business Insider website that discusses one of the reasons for the fall of the Roman Empire: 

The richest 1 percent of the Romans during the early Republic was only 10 to 20 times as wealthy as an average Roman citizen. Now compare that to the situation in Late Antiquity when an average Roman noble of senatorial class had property valued in the neighborhood of 20,000 Roman pounds of gold. There was no “middle class” comparable to the small landholders of the third century B.C.; the huge majority of the population was made up of landless peasants working land that belonged to nobles. These peasants had hardly any property at all, but if we estimate it (very generously) at one tenth of a pound of gold, the wealth differential would be 200,000! Inequality grew both as a result of the rich getting richer (late imperial senators were 100 times wealthier than their Republican predecessors) and those of the middling wealth becoming poor.”

[4] To be fair, I saw the Stones in 2019, and they were terrific. The Supper Bowl performance was an aberration.

From the Journal of Percival Reginal Ignatius Morehouse

[Editor’s note: Dr. Morehouse is the esteemed editor of Latinate Locutions for the Habitually Silent.]

Perhaps what occurred last Friday is the result of the moon’s and the sun’s elliptical longitudes differing by 180 degrees, for in the wee hours, having been prompted from my recumbent position in the arms of Morpheus by a corporal need for vesical relief, I noticed from the bathroom window that the lunar hemisphere facing me was completely sunlit, appearing as a circular disc illuminating the night sky.

You know, it’s possible that these geriatric spouses’ curtailed narratives possess smidgens of veracity. No, I didn’t bay at the full moon, nor did thick fur suddenly pullulate from my epidermis in a lupine metamorphosis; however, the synapses of my cerebral cortex did misfire – if that’s the word –  into a subversive ideation, a completely impractical plan of action, as if the Imp of the Perverse had commandeered my common sense. 

Or as Ovid might say, Habeo cilium barbam supra Fundamentum meum.

A few hours after Dawn had painted the eastern sky with her rosy digits, I descended the stairs to find my consort standing before a pile of dishes  an accumulation of platters in that domestic space where meals are prepared.

“Beloved,” I said, “how would you like to engage in an impractical odyssey that would have us motor from the Holy City to her sister city Savannah for lunch and then turn around and drive home in time to retrieve Haselden from the halls of academe?”

A smile of enchantment beamed from that face capable of launching a thousand ships, a face so beautiful it might prompt Mrs. Menelaus herself to google “plastic surgeons.”

Consort vis-a-vis Rossetti’s Helen (aka Mrs. Menelaus )

Still smiling, she queried, “But do we have time?”

“Yes, my darling,” I replied. “I have officiated a marriage of science and serendipity. If we depart in thirty minutes, we can arrive at Chive Seabar & Lounge on Broughton Street at eleven when it opens, enjoy a repast of an hour-and-a-half, and then drive home and arrive at Haselden’s educational institution by 2:30 post meridian.”

Savannah, Georgia

By nine, we were in transit, headed south on Highway 17S, motoring past the three Rs: the Red Top Community, Rantowles, and Ravenel, the last hamlet infamous for its severe enforcement of municipal strictures governing vehicular speed. On we progressed through Jacksonboro, past the quaint Edisto Motel, and that notorious naval launch site that has been christened with the unfortunate appellation of “Cuckold’s Landing.” 

After what NASCAR aficionados term a “pitstop”* (where I encountered the abomination below), we merged onto I-95, and in a mere hour found ourselves traversing the Savannah River and into the city itself.

*No, I do not suffer from a lisp.


Exactly at 10:55, our cellular amanuensis Siri informed us that “the destination is on your left,” and much to our astonishment, a parking space devoid of vehicle presented itself for the taking.

Even though what happened next might mislead the reader to consider the narrative a fictional account, just as my consort and I reached the door of Chive Seabar & Lounge, a masked woman of Asian heritage somersaulted the sign from closed to open, unsheathed the deadbolt and ushered us in to a corner table. 

Otherwise, the restaurant was devoid of customers.

We ordered mussels in a yellow curry festooned with onions and pickled cucumbers, skewered scallops, and a mushroom salad, which in honor of Mr. Biden’s election, we shared socialistically. 

Each dish was a savory culinary concoction of toothsomeness. And though castigated in verse for his winged acceleration, Time’s airborne Pegasus-propelled transport did not seem in a haste-post-haste mode, so the luncheon progressed in a comfortable sequence of leisurely elapsing.

By 12:30 PM, after the remuneration of the computation of the meal’s reckoning had transpired, we had exited, were ensconced in our automobile, and retracing the trip in reverse order.

The only glitch in an otherwise splendid sojourn was that we arrived at Haselden’s educational institution forty-five minutes early, although, truth be told, that miscalculation afforded us a premiere position in the vehicular parade known as – pardon the vulgarity – “the pick-up line,” but then again, our prolonged  idleness also presented me with the opportunity to chide the English Department Chairman for refusing my suggestion of adding Tristram Shandy to the 6th grade reading list.

At any rate, it was a full day, and I am now more than ready to close the leaves of this journal and retreat once again into Morpheus’s narcotic embrace.

8:45 PM, 29 January 2021.

Beware of Baphoons: an Extended Definition

painting by Olayinks Taylor-Lewis

More and more I see the bare feet of passengers in SUVs  propped up on dashboards in the posture of the baboon pictured above.

Hurtling along I-81 doing 70-plus, the footloose lefty below fills in her lottery ticket trusting the laws-of-average when it comes to trips per-auto-collision while discounting them when it comes to the odds she’ll claim the Powerball jackpot and spend the rest of her days flying in private jets to luxury boxes to sip mint juleps as she watches the horses run at Pimlico.

Let’s call her foolish.  Certainly, despite her simian posture, baboonish is way too inappropriately pejorative.

The man below, a recent recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, claims that volcano eruptions, not industrial pollution, are depleting the ozone layer and that “Columbus saved the Indians from themselves.” 

Here’s Rush via on personal responsibility concerning drug abuse: 

If there’s a line of cocaine here, I have to make the choice to go down and sniff it [. . .]. If there were a gun here, it wouldn’t fire itself. I’ve got to reach for it and pull the trigger [. . .] We are rationalizing all this responsibility and all the choices people are making and we’re blaming not them, but society for it. All these Hollywood celebrities say the reason they’re weird and bizarre is because they were abused by their parents. So we’re going to pay for that kind of rehab, too, and we shouldn’t. It’s not our responsibility.

From  the LA Times’:

Radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh was booked on drug charges in Florida on Friday, and his lawyer said Limbaugh had agreed to a deal enabling him to avoid prosecution in the prescription case if he continued treatment for addiction problems and avoided any other run-ins with the law.

Let’s call him a buffoon.  Although crude in his intellectual machinations and often grotesque in his bodily incarnations, Rush is too slick to be called a baboon.


Once, in the picturesque Irish village of Roundstone,  Judy Birdsong, JT Crow, and I had what would have been a delightful noontime meal if a shirtless hirsute man and his morbidly obese wife had not plopped themselves next to us at the luncheon counter. Alas, in this case, no-shirt received service. Although he hadn’t shaved any Arabic numerals in his dorsal fur, he did resemble the fellow below.

I don’t think baboonish is too severe a descriptor.


Once a student of mine mistyped baphoon for baboon, and I thought too myself, “What a great word,”  a cross between a buffoon and a baboon.  It sounds just like what it means. Here’s my definition: a baphoon is a humanoid whose buffoonery crosses crudely into the ass-displaying, territorially aggressive subhuman behavior, a combination of buffoonery and boorishness characterized by passionate overreaction. (Note, baboons don’t possess Second Amendment rights, but baphoons do).  

This illustration should go in the dictionary next to the definition:

Of course, most of us only encounter baboons in zoos, and generally we can avoid buffoons if we avoid certain venues; however, baphoons tend to aggressively invade our territory, so they’re a different matter all together. Whatever you do, don’t try to reason with them.

Live Reading of “Loose Cadences for Loose Cannons” (a Horatian satire inspired by Alexander Pope)

“chaos of thought and passion all confused” – Alexander Pope, “An Essay on Man”

Here’s me reading my satirical poem on the Capitol Insurrection at Chico Feo’s Singer/Songwriter Soapbox 18 January 2021.


Here’s the text of the poem:

Loose Cadences for Loose Cannons: A Capitol Insurgent Doggerel Taxonomic Commode Ode

The fever swamps of the radical right
Teem with an abundance of exotic wildlife,

A vast array of various species
Thriving on a regimen of bovine feces.

Look! A QAnon Shaman, bare-chested, toting a spear,
Sporting a smile instead of a sneer,

Stomping around the Capitol wreaking havoc
Fueled by a diet that’s 100% organic.

Then there’s the less colorful Klete Keller,
Who looks to be a regular sort of fellow,

Tall, wholesome-looking, clean-cut, strong of jaw,
A gold-medal winner on the wrong side of the law.

Off duty cops, insurance agents, adjunct professors
Among the herd of headweak aggressors,

A motley crew: CEOs, politicians, welders, sailors,
Some dwelling in mansions, others in trailers,

And militia men galore, bearded, cosplaying Rambo,
Their lingua franca crazy batshit mumbo jumbo,

All exhibiting a disdain for natural selection,
Maskless as they swarm to overthrow the election,

Recording their crimes with selfies and live streams
Taking self-incrimination to ridiculous extremes.

Yet when the FBI arrives to initiate their torment,
They whine and say, “I was just caught up in the moment.”

Like I said, the fever swamps of the radical right
Teem with an abundance of exotic wildlife.

Don’t Mind Me, Just Letting Off a Little Steam

From left to right, Mike Pence, Sidney Powell, Donald Trump, Tucker Carson, Lindsey Graham, Jared Kushner, Paula White, Kayleigh McEnany, Kellyanne Conway, Ted Nugent, William Barr, Rudy Giuliani

I don’t know about y’all, but I’ve had more than enough of this farcical post-election tragicomedy with its drunken star witnesses; its Bethlem-Royal-Hospital[1]grade conspiracy theories[2]); its madcap Marx-Brothers press conferences in parking lots shared by landscaping companies, crematoria, and porn shops. I’ve had enough of smirking Lou Dobbs, looking like a seventy-year-old seventh grader, smugly spewing hyperbolic lies to the detriment of our democracy, and most of all, I’ve had more than enough of pusillanimous Republican officeholders who, when it comes to courage, make the Scarlet Letter’s Arthur Dimmesdale look like Beowulf in comparison.  

Allow me to fill in some of the blanks of Ezra Pound’s[3] brilliantly obscene “Canto XIV”:

Io venni in luogo d’ogni luce muto;
The stench of wet coal, politicians
Newt Gingrich and Rudy Giuliani, their wrists bound to
    their ankles,
Standing bare bum,
Faces smeared on their rumps,
    wide eye on flat buttock,
Bush hanging for beard,
    Addressing crowds through their arse-holes,
Addressing the multitudes in the ooze,
    newts, water-slugs, water-maggots,
And with them. Lindsey Graham,
    a scrupulously clean table-napkin
Tucked under his penis,
    and William Barr, 
Who disliked colloquial language,
stiff-starched, but soiled, collars
    circumscribing his legs,
The pimply and hairy skin
    pushing over the collar’s edge,
Profiteers drinking blood sweetened with sh-t,
And behind them Donald Trump and the financiers
    lashing them with steel wires.

[Deep Sigh] Oh, I feel so much better.

Happy Holidays!


[1] To quote Steven Casale, “But there was once an insane asylum so notorious that its very name entered the English language as a word for chaos, mayhem, and confusion. That institution is London’s Bethlem Royal Hospital—nicknamed Bedlam. Founded in 1247, Bethlem is Europe’s oldest center devoted solely to the treatment of mental illness.”

[2] My favorite: former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, prior to his death seven years ago, orchestrated the development software that from a server located in Germany switched votes from Trump to Biden.

[3] My favorite fascist.

Extended Definition: Kafkaesque

It’s certainly not surprising that almost any cool sounding word is likely to be picked up by the subliterati and its meaning distorted, especially by people ignorant of the word’s origins.

Take the word “Kafkaesque,” for example.  How many people who haven’t read Kafka throw the word around as if it only means “weird-ass strange,” not aware that to be Kafkaesque an event must be characterized by surreal distortion and a sense of impending danger.  

Let me offer an example of a not even close to Kafkaesque incident from the Police Blotter of the 11 October 2017 edition of my hometown weekly, The Folly Current.


BAD NIGHT FOR EVERYONE

The R/O[1] was dispatched to Center Street around 1:30 a.m. in reference to a Hit-and Run. Upon arrival, he found the suspect vehicle in the roadway, with the 44-year-old female driver in the driver’s seat, passed out with the car still running. Two victims were also on the scene and said the suspect had backed into their car hard, then drove off. They had followed the car to Center Street. The R/O opened the suspect’s door and then she woke up and asked what was going on. The officer immediately noticed the suspect had bloodshot eyes and impaired motor function. She also smelled like alcohol. The officer asked the woman to step out of the car to look at her back bumper. The woman complied, and nearly fell down getting out of the car. In the process, her boob fell out, and the officer had to ask her to cover up. During the discussion, the suspect asked several times, “what do you need again?” The woman became aggressive with the officer and refused to follow instructions on field sobriety tests. Then she resisted arrest and had to be manhandled into the patrol car. She refused to provide a Breathalyzer test sample, and was arrested for Driving While Intoxicated, Leaving the Scene of an Accident, and Resisting Arrest. While being transported to the county jail, the suspect made several declarations, including that the R/O was violating her, that she was going to tell her lawyer and her sister who is in the media business, and that the R/O was a “wannabe white boy.” The officer notes the suspect made “so many derogatory statements during the arrest, the breath test and all the transports, I couldn’t write them all down, but have it recorded on body camera.”

[1] Blotterspeak for responding officers


Okay, while this incident might well be described as “bizarre,” it is by no means rises to the dada nightmarish distortion of a Kafka story. To be Kafkaesque, it would have to go something like this:


SCHLECHTE NACHT FüR ALLE

The R/Os, conjoined biracial twins (Cuban/Chinese) sporting a freshly laundered uniform (complete with his-and-his golden-fringed epaulets) are shark fishing from the pier at 1:30 a.m. when their supervisor dispatches them to Hauptstraße [1] in reference to a Hit-and Run.

Upon arrival, they find the suspect’s Citroen parked in the middle of Hauptstraße with its 44-year-old female driver – a dead ringer for Marlene Dietrich – in the driver’s seat passed out with the car still running and her cigarette holder in her hand, the cigarette still lit, its ash a gravity-defying six centimeters long.

The two hit-and-run victims, unemployed Lithuanian circus clowns in costume, are also on the scene and report (in heavily accented English) the suspect had backed into their car hard, then fishtailed off, headed beachward.  The victims hopped into their vehicle and trailed in hot pursuit.

One of  R/Os opens the suspect’s door. She stirs slowly into consciousness and asks, “Wo bin ich?”[2]  

The officers immediately take note of the suspect’s bloodshot eyes and impaired motor function. She moves and speaks as if through a green aspic salad reeking of Schnapps.

In falsetto unison, the officers ask the woman to step out of the car to look at her back bumper, The Citroen seems to spit her out in disgust as if she were a chunk of rancid Meeräsche. [3]

Teetering on her stilettoes, she stumbles into the open arms of one of the circus clowns. In the process, her right breast falls out, and the officers, again in unison, ask her to adjust her décolleté, which she accomplishes beneath muttered curses.

Interrogation begins. During the discussion, the suspect asks several times, “Was brauchst du nochmal?”[4]

During her field sobriety tests – reciting the 23th Psalm backwards, walking on her hands on the sidewalk in front of St. James pub – she emits a howling a scream that sets off the car alarms of the vehicles parked along the bars and restaurants. Having had enough, the officers manhandle her into the patrol car as ants crawl from her ear.

Refusing to provide a Breathalyzer test sample, the R/Os handcuff her and charge her with Driving While Intoxicated, Leaving the Scene of an Accident, and Resisting Arrest. While being transported to the county jail, the suspect accuses the R/Os of groping her and threatens that to tell her lawyer Rudy Giuliani and her sister Laura Ingram, who is in the media business.  She calls the R/Os wannabe weiße Jungs.[5]

One of the R/Os notes, the suspect made “so many derogatory statements during the arrest, the breath test and all the transports, I couldn’t write them all down, but have it recorded on my Luis Buñuel body camera.”


So there, that’s Kafkaesque, Lynchian, messed-up, creepy.

That’s it. Thanks for listening to my Ted Talk.

from R Crumb’s book Kafka

[1] Center Street

[2] Where am I?

[3] mullet

[4] What do you need again?

[5] White boy

Paul Harvey, Prophet

paul harvey prophet (original)

The prophet Paul Harvey and I go way back.  I first heard the silken gravel of his voice emanating from my grandfather’s radio circa 1960.  Kiki, as we called our granddaddy, and his two younger children had in their spare time the peculiar* habit of barricading themselves in their rooms for hours (in my grandfather’s and aunt’s case, years) listening to AM radio (he) and Barbra Streisand records (she).

My uncle also hid in his room listening to jazz when he wasn’t working on a spy ship or at the Navy Yard, but he was the breadwinner in this close knit but distant family (They all lived together but rarely communicated with each other). In addition to the radio, Kiki also played the ukelele, sang, and yodeled.  He also enjoyed an occasional half pint of whiskey he hid in his shoes.

“Hey, Kiki, what’s this?”

“Hey, what you doing in that closet?  Get out of there!  Don’t you tell your grandmama, you hear?

“Yes sir.”

*I wish I could find a more positive adjective, but none come to mind. 

9. Hellman'sCrow.jpg*

aged in a canvas shoe for up to two hours

Anyway, Kiki was a Joseph McCarthy conservative, and Harvey was the 1961 precursor of Fox News, i.e, a welcome antidote to the liberal bias in network news (The News and Courier, on the other hand, was about as liberal as John A Stormer).  Being only 10 or so, I didn’t have a clue about politics, but even back then I detected something false in Harvey’s voice, an echo of hucksterdom, the intonation of a Snake Oil barker.

At any rate, Paul Harvey like so many things from that era – Silly Putty, dammit dolls – had faded from my memory until one of my Facebook “friends” linked via Glenn Beck what they considered an uncannily accurate prophecy Harvey had issued in 1965.  You may listen to it here, if you dare, but I’m going to deconstruct the prophecy  via the transcript.

The conceit here is that Harvey is impersonating Satan, the Father of Lies, in corrupting the nation by whispering abominations in the citizens’ ears.

To wit,

“If I were the devil … If I were the Prince of Darkness, I’d want to engulf the whole world in darkness. And I’d have a third of it’s [sic] real estate, and four-fifths of its population, but I wouldn’t be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree — Thee. So I’d set about however necessary to take over the United States. I’d subvert the churches first — I’d begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: ‘Do as you please.’”

That’s right, dear reader.  Turn off the damn contraption you’re reading this on, go sell everything you own, and give it to the poor.  Also, forget about binge-watching this weekend.

“To the young, I would whisper that ‘The Bible is a myth.’ I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around. I would confide that what’s bad is good, and what’s good is ‘square.’ And the old, I would teach to pray, after me, ‘Our Father, which art in Washington…’*”


*Whose initials now happen to be DJT and who recently has described himself as “the second coming.” Wonder what Harvey would make of the Donald.


That’s right, the Bible isn’t a myth; it’s literally true.

For example, displeased with his creation, God orders Noah to gather a male and female from every species – Aardvarks (because they don’t have cloven feat, a Middle Eastern delicacy), Bengal tigers, polar bears, etc.  – and place them on an ark so they can survive a world deluge.  After the flood, Noah plants a vineyard, gets drunk, passes out naked, is seen by his gossiping son Hamm, then is covered by sons Shem and Japheth.  Noah wakes up and creates an apology for slavery when he punishes his indiscrete son and his descendants: “Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.”

No way that’s not all literally true (even if it does call to question the God’s choice of Noah as the the progenitor of the world’s population).

noah

Rant on, Prophet Harvey:

“And then I’d get organized. I’d educate authors in how to make lurid literature exciting, so that anything else would appear dull and uninteresting. I’d threaten TV with dirtier movies and vice versa. I’d pedal narcotics to whom I could. I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction. I’d tranquilize the rest with pills.”

“If I were the devil I’d soon have families that war with themselves, churches at war with themselves, and nations at war with themselves; until each in its turn was consumed. And with promises of higher ratings I’d have mesmerizing media fanning the flames. If I were the devil I would encourage schools to refine young intellects, but neglect to discipline emotions — just let those run wild, until before you knew it, you’d have to have drug sniffing dogs and metal detectors at every schoolhouse door.”

Now, I have to admit the drug-sniffing dogs and metal detectors do seem prophetic for 1965. Maybe Harvey should have added, “I’d whisper to politicians to shift welfare dollars from the poor (we’ll always have them) to farm subsidies (where they’ll enable the idolators who worship Mammon even wealthier).  So without a chance of bettering themselves, these children of poverty will turn to crime.”

“Within a decade I’d have prisons overflowing, I’d have judges promoting pornography — soon I could evict God from the courthouse, then from the schoolhouse, and then from the houses of Congress. And in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and deify science. I would lure priests and pastors into misusing boys and girls, and church money. If I were the devil I’d make the symbols of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle.”

Indeed prisons are overflowing.

The American criminal justice system holds almost 2.3 million people in 1,719 state prisons, 109 federal prisons, 1,772 juvenile correctional facilities, 3,163 local jails, and 80 Indian Country jails as well as in military prisons, immigration detention facilities, civil commitment centers, state psychiatric hospitals …”

Imprison the black cannabis user; award the manufacturers of Xanax massive tax breaks.

ap-pfizer-ceo-resigns-4_3

Pfizer CEO Ian Read’s total 2018 pay fell to $19.5 million [sob]

“If I were the devil I’d take from those, and who have, and give to those wanted until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And what do you bet? I could get whole states to promote gambling as thee way to get rich? I would caution against extremes and hard work, in Patriotism, in moral conduct. I would convince the young that marriage is old-fashioned, that swinging is more fun, that what you see on the TV is the way to be. And thus I could undress you in public, and I could lure you into bed with diseases for which there is no cure. In other words, if I were the devil I’d just keep right on doing on what he’s doing. Paul Harvey, good day.”

Which reminds me of an old joke:

Q: What’s the difference between AIDS, genital herpes, gonorrhea, and a time-share condo?

A:  Gonorrhea.  You can get rid of gonorrhea.

Good day!

Pay Per View Presents Clash of the Cults

zootsuit-riots

Vincent Valdez, “Kill the Pachuco Bastard!,

 

 

Pay Per View Presents Clash of the Cults

boxcars, boxcars, boxcars, Allen Ginsberg, “Howl”

 

I say let’s have a Bernie Bro

Trump Troop Arena Brawl,

Brought to you by Ben and Jerry’s and Chick-fil-A.

 

Let’s go all out, cheerleaders for sure.

Elizabeth Bruenig in a nun’s habit for Bernie,

Rashida Tlaib in a diaphanous burka booing.

 

The Bros chanting,

“Go, Bernie, Go.

Do the Trotsky like Madame Blavatsky.”

 

On the other side,

Sarah Huckabee, Sarah Huckabee, Sarah Huckabee,

 

Lindsey in a 50s collegiate letter sweater

Shouting through a megaphone,

“Gimme an M, gimme an A, gimme a G . . .

 

The five Republican SCOTUS appointees should referee.

Clarence “Coke Can” Thomas with a whistle around his neck,

Dangling beneath his assortment of chins,

Bret Kavanaugh, eyes blinking, lips pursed,

Emitting tiny Ivy League farts

With hints of peppermint schnapps.

 

Oh, my brothers and sisters,

What shall we call this extravaganza?

 

Clash of the Cults?

 

Dunno.

Just an idea.

 

Nilla Puddin’: The Return of Rap’s Most Inept Practitioner

nilla-pudding

 

 

Y’all hear that thumping bass line, boys and girls,

That means that Nilla Pudding’s about to take a stab

 

Let’s start the New Year right, dat right, right,

Not wrong with some sappy tune.

 

Dat there bass don’t seem enough

Let’s add some drums to the mix-ture

 

Oh yeah, that sounds better

Some guitar for the icing

Might make the mix more en-tertaining.

 

Uh-uh, now we’re crusining.

 

As you know, Nilla Puddin’ is my name

And rapping is my avocation

 

Busting rhymes left and right

Got a back-up sound that’s so so taut

 

As taut as a tick, it’s so so ill

Gonna give my posse a spine shudder

 

Diggin’ it sistah?

Gonna give my vocal chord a blistah

 

You catch the rhyme

 

I’m on a roll

Jelly Roll Morton

 

Dr. Thomas Horton

 

Beth Orton

 

The smile on her mouth

Was plagerized

 

Unsantitized

 

Oh, shoot, I gotta go,

The grits be boiling overflow

 

Like I said Nilla Pudding is my name

And rapping is my avocation