Saturday, March 31, 2007

Sweet Jesus

I saw this last night on CNN and was more amused by the Catholic League's outrage than by the sculpture.

More than 50 years into the Age of Television, they still haven't figured out that denouncing something is the best way to get it lots of attention.

Tabloid Fantasy League

Not much of a sports fan, to say the least, fantasy baseball and football never held the slightest interest for me. But if you substitute celebrities for athletes ... well, that's a whole different ballgame.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

"Accentuate the positives, medicate the negatives."
Amy Sedaris

Grease, Dung, and Other Beauty Secrets

This 18th-century Martha Stewart had tips on everything from cuisine to cosmetics.

Hog's lard: It's a good thing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Thank God

For unintentional hilarity. Check out some of these titles. And don't miss the inspiring video on the home page.

I could submit a few volumes:
  • Thank God I'm Unemployed*
  • Thank God I Don't Do Housework Anymore*
  • Thank God I Have a Minivan and Live in a Garden Apartment in Northern Virginia*
* Pity 'bout the ALS, though.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Fifteen Minutes of Shame

Generations ago, before Jerry Springer and soi-disant reality TV, bourgeois convention held that respectable people got their names in the paper on only three occasions: birth, marriage, and death.

Maybe they had the right idea. These European clips offer three cautionary cases in point:

(Click to enlarge if necessary. And get your eyes checked, dammit!)

And Finally ...

Monday, March 26, 2007

Noteworthy Names

The latest installment from the ever-growing list of names that have caught my attention:

Coedna Carter
Donnie and Dawn Dunn
Rev. Fletcher W. Swink (and wife Geneala)
Mignon Faget
(Mr.) Pleasant Heggie
Kindra Latrice Butts
Sunny Toews
Bonnie L. Bonneville
(Mrs.) Willie Lee McPhatter
Flossie Ransom
Web Utz
(Mrs.) Bathseva Bland
Bertha Mae Bouknight
Hermitt Knox
Edna Mona
(Mrs.) Percolia Seymour
Bridie Pyles
Walter Skrunch
Tanner Blanchette
Fannie Bell
(Mrs.) Leaner Diggs
Izetta Autumn
Autumn Swing
(Mrs.) Coreaner Cargile DeWees
Brittany Dutchman
Crystal Woodland
Zitman E. French Jr.
Purity Li
Zenobia Gant
Luann Schminkey
Col. John Fogg Twombly III
Ednajane Truax
Frank Frinks
Fred Freed
Freed King
Col. Reamer W. Argo III
Betty Sue Lively Revels
Roy Rogers
Lartisha Lilly
Lillie Rose
Shametha LaFrance
Frontis B. Wiggins III
Dick Washburn
(Mr.) Bertil G. Buhler
Bessie K. Wigglesworth
Northmore Wilbur Hamill II
(Mrs.) Devereaux Bonfils Raskauskas
Dr. Candide Petrol
Starlette Worden
Theda Maw
(Mrs.) Prettlophine Jackson
Robert Nelson "Rocky" deButts Jr.
(Ms.) Fonda Pride
Amber Suckfiel
(Miss) Adream Blyther
(Mrs.) Sponcello R. Carpenter
(Mr.) Vernoise Dorsey
Jada Toombs
Zeppelin and Marley Raunig (siblings)
Lottie Swink
Blossom Sinker
(Miss) Orpha Wiley
Tholie and Roberette Murchison
Cedric and Redric Ledbetter (Roberette's progeny)
Geneva Feemster
(Mrs.) Mintry Muse
Carlos Washington
Amaryllis McDonald
Royal and Joneta Mothershead
Merry Blackman

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Friday, March 23, 2007

Is Your Fetus a Republican?

Would you celebrate? Would you scream? Would you abort? Would you call Fox News and demand your own reality show? Or would you immediately seek medical treatment to turn that hapless helpless bundle of goo and tissue and possibility into a nice straitlaced bland-as-milk moderate Democrat with a thing for gardening and the missionary position and tepid travel magazines?
As always, Mark Morford asks the big questions.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Out on the Town

Either Janice Dickenson stole a page from the Britney Spears Book of Oops or she was itching for attention.
The 52-year-old mother of two flashed her used goods and revealed a smorgasbord of fabric and flesh, which combined to form an anatomical hodgepodge of nasty.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

God and His Gays

By effectively insisting that God is a spiteful homo-hater, his followers saddle him with ancient phobias and condemn him to the backwaters of American moral life.
This op-ed in today's Post examines an emerging conundrum for the religious right.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

"To be capable of respect is today
almost as rare as to be worthy of it."
Joseph Joubert

The Accidental Candidate

How did George Bush attain such an enviable state of self-respect, without hardly trying?

What is his worldview? Who and what shaped it? Is he merely a Name, a facsimile of his father, whose speechwriters first coined the sly slogan "compassionate conservatism"? Is he the breath of fresh air who will restore honor and dignity to the Oval Office? Is he a contemporary version of Shakespeare's Prince Hal who has finally shaken off his dissolute ways to assume the burden of his birthright as a member of one of America's political dynasties? Or is he something much more personal: the instrument of revenge, sent forth by the grudge-holding Barbara to punish Bill Clinton for driving Big George into irrelevance and soiling the White House with his low-class ways?
Originally published in 2000, this insightful Vanity Fair profile is still worth reading. Maybe even more so.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Model Worker

Naomi Campbell reports for duty at the New York City Sanitation Department.

These Labels Don't Stick

For some reason, this little essay in today's Washington Post spoke to me. Like the writer, I don't fit comfortably into society's pigeonholes at this stage in my life. And I love her cheerful self-description: "I'm an old lady. Or old bat, if you prefer."

Introducing the iRack

Too close to the truth to be entirely humorous.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Lookin' Good

Tonya Harding, bless her heart, is back in the news.

Wistful Thinking

Why can't we be socially progressive -- like, say, Mexico? At this rate, Saudi Arabia will permit gay marriage before the U.S. does.

Groundbreaking Discovery

Women have known this forever, but it's worse than they thought.

Men stare at crotches

Even other men's crotches. Even animals' crotches, for God's sake.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Pitfalls of Tenacity

If the people at Successories had a sense of humor or irony, this would make a great poster for persistence or conviction:

A single building is left standing on a mound of earth after its owner refused an offer of compensation from the land developer, who proceeded to dig around it in western China's Chongqing municipality. Photo: AP

Do Try This at Home

It's a lot easier than at work. A lot.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Few things incite my scorn as powerfully as the cultural scourge that is Successories*. You know what they are: those godawful tchotchkes, typically framed posters, pairing an eye-catching picture with the "definition" of vision or synergy or some other odious term. The kind of thing you might find in Dubya's office. The epitome of '80s corporate schlock, they're still hanging around like a stale fart.

A brief visit to the Successories Web site just now made my stomach churn and my blood boil. I'm not sure what sickened me more: the Bright Idea acrylic light bulb or the Dare to Soar coffee mug ("Your attitude almost always determines your altitude in life."). If anyone were foolish enough to present me with such a treasure, they'd better have mighty brisk reflexes, because it would come flying back with great force.

Of course, no one ever would give me one. My vision isn't depicted on any poster, and synergy means nothing to me. I don't see life in tired clich├ęs or cheesy sports metaphors. My attitude, by Successories standards, is very poor indeed. I don't Dare to Soar; I'm Determined to Crawl.

Here's my attitude: If you look to posters and mugs for inspiration or motivation -- well, bless your heart, you need far more help than you know. You probably get upset when an elected official misbehaves (see previous post), as if anyone with an ounce of common sense would turn to a politician for moral guidance.

I'm not alone in my disgust. Despair, Inc. offers products that look identical to Successories, but their wisdom is of a decidedly different brand. For example: "Ambition: The journey of a thousand miles sometimes ends very very badly." And: "Idiocy: Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups."

A friend recently sent a collection of fake Successories that made me laugh out loud. There are too many to post at once, but I'll add them one by one, starting with my favorite:

* Corporate motto: "Setting the tone for success." Really.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Thank. God.

Libby Found Guilty

What he should have been convicted of was being 56 years old and calling himself Scooter. That's the real crime.

Too bad it wasn't Cheney or Rove.

"Doubt is not a pleasant condition,
but certainty is absurd."


If his heart is down there, where is his brain?

Monday, March 05, 2007

Noteworthy Names

The latest installment from the ever-growing list of names that have caught my attention:

Frieda Maus
Etta Cook
Etta Richwine
Hilda Hemp
Pealie Jean Winzer
(Miss) Domonique Dolphus
Calamity Williams
James Younger, Sr.
Roosevelt Brackett, Sr.
A'Quonesia Franklin
Jennifer Schmuck
Nelson O. Chipchin
Heath Clift
(Ms.) Flay Gray
Dr. Cleat E. Mock
Van Buren Quattlebaum
Carlton Smack
Scarlett Parsley Hooker
S.Q. Wye
Hazel Bagwell
India and Currie Cox
Cherie Gift
Idella Charity
Felicity Payne
Rev. Jessicener Williamson
Skip Inabinett
Wienfield Tibbs, Jr.
(Mr.) Carveth W. Gooch
Georgella Hefty
Medorum Crawford
Regina D. King
Chester Chinn
Lennis and Elvie Pilson
Donald, Donna, and Donice Goines (siblings)
Royal, Royell, and Roynee Walker (siblings)
Eola Dance
Edna Earle Booze
Holly Hornbeak
(Mrs.) Lettice McKenzie
Opal Regalia
Bishop Thaddeus B. Winkey
(Mr.) Hiawatha Crank
Thurman Zollicoffer
Shatonya Lumpkin
Argilathea Cooksey
(Ms.) Ventsene Love
Frenchy May Parker
Faymelette Rindgo
Toloria and Ponjola Braswell (siblings)
Leroy and June Bug Bynacker (and son Darwin, a.k.a. "Dinkie")
Roscoe Roy Coats
(Mr.) Arzie L. Cristy
Maizie Hightower DeLancey
(Mrs.) Bernielou Goad
Geneva Hawks
(Mrs.) Verdie Kidwell
Holiday Smith
(Mr.) Wellstood Tipton
Delilah Darling
Clement Greenfield, Sr.
Folger Gross, Hubba Norvell Jones, and Theory "Rat" Holland (3 of 10 siblings)
Shy Meeker
(Mrs.) Brownie Stamp

Sunday, March 04, 2007

God Help Us

Everyone knows Hollywood and the media are hotbeds of liberalism. That's a given, as they're major elements of the Jewish conspiracy to take over the world. The gays might be involved too; I'm a little fuzzy on the details.

But Wikipedia? I had no idea. Until I read this.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Friday, March 02, 2007

"Tact is the ability to describe others as they see themselves."
Abraham Lincoln

The Unkindest Cut

I went to the beauty parlor yesterday for a long-overdue rinse-and-set.

As she finished, the stylist asked, "Do you want to have the lady take a look?" She meant my mother, who as usual had accompanied me.

Never mind that many of the clippings on my smock were white. Never mind that it's been a quarter of a century since my mom held veto power for my haircuts.

This was hardly an isolated incident. People began talking louder and slower the day I began using a wheelchair. I don't know why, exactly -- maybe because my face is lower than theirs. I like to think there's still a glimmer of intelligence in my eyes, but perhaps I flatter myself. And if people suspect I might be retarded, my heavily impaired speech can only reinforce the impression.

My ego might be in tatters, but my sense of humor, luckily, is intact. I'm sure Miss Thing wondered why the little retarded boy couldn't stop laughing. Must be part of his condition.

Thursday, March 01, 2007