Sunday, January 31, 2010

Word of the Day


From Riley.

Foreign Relations

A friend reports:
OK - so I found some distant cousin on facebook and she is my "friend". she has already proven herself to be total trash; one example--posted pictures of two of her kids (who are in high school) playing beer pong in the basement and seemed to think it was the greatest thing ever. she's also going on and on about her grandchild. and since going out and getting trashed seems to be her hobby, I was disapproving of THAT in a grandmother. But today she posted that she was really sore from shovelling snow. And that she guessed that since she was going to turn 40 (FORTY!) this year, she should expect her body to give out. omg. omg.

Seen in the Obits

From today's Post:
"[He] came from a long line of decorated U.S. Army officers, including his fraternal grandfather...."

From Terry.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Today's Top Story

"It remained unclear whether the calves
were 'tormented' or 'puzzled.'"
"You know, it's a human race. And you lost."
Sleep Talkin' Man

'Half the Blood, Double the Sugar'

"I believe in home-cookin' a meal with all the crucifixin's."
Cook in Christ, bitches!

Found at crime scene: gun, Bible.

Austin Wilson
Six Word Stories
Actor and comedian Soupy Sales is pursued by a man in a gorilla suit while driving
a speedboat, circa 1965. (Graphic House/Archive Photos/Getty Images)

From Riley.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Today's Top Story

From Riley.

Try This at Home

The spaghetti was bland and overcooked, though the marinara sauce was brightly flavored. The meatballs were a travesty, with the consistency of an eraser and a distinct taste of stale cooking oil. The cooler they got the worse they got; the aftertaste of salt was downright acrid, and the filler had an opaque, chalky quality that was as unpleasant as it was unidentifiable.
The New York Times pays a visit to ... Olive Garden.

From Kristine.


Are you plugged in?

From Derek.

Help Desk

A few pointers on sexuality.

From Derek and Susan.

A Backward Glance


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Today's Top Stories

From Peggy.

Wizard of Oz

New year, new boyfriend.

'Your Taste Is on My Mind'

He's hooked on something alright, but it's not a feeling.

From Susan.


A friend reports:
This morning I wanted to clean the inside of my windshield so I got the windex and reached down under my seat and grabbed an old blue handtowel. Sprayed and wiped and everything looked much better. Then I noticed dozens of seeds (?) all over the dash which must have fallen out of the towel. So I got a tissue and wiped up most of them. When I could as I was driving I started to reach up to pick off the rest of the “seeds” to drop into the trash. They were soft. They weren’t seeds. Then I noticed they were kind of ridged horizontally and one end was a little darker than the rest. 60 minutes later as I was pulling into work I’d figured out they were larvae of some kind. At least the windex had killed them!

Or so I thought. Stopped by the ladies’ room before a staff meeting and one of the little critters fell onto the floor where it started wriggling around.

Just saw another live one here in my office after lunch.

So now I know there are probably hundreds of them under my seat in the car – presumably they have something to dine on or they wouldn’t be thriving there. I really really do not want to go exploring….

Star Gazing

From Caroline.

Sunday, January 24, 2010


Yesterday we went to check out Ben and Brian's new spread in the foothills of the Blue Ridge. The countryside is beautiful, even in January, and the house is on a high spot with views in several directions. With sections dating from the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries, the new owners are pondering what mark to make for the 21st. I saw pictures before they bought the place, and they've already made great strides. Leave it to the gays.

The local historical society is pretty sure the property was a stop on the Underground Railroad. It's about 25 acres, with fields, forest, a good-sized pond, and quite an array of outbuildings, including a little structure that was once the local post office. (That looks fairly sound, but most of the others are decidedly less so.)

The dogs had a blast exploring all this, and Devo, true to form, found some shit to roll in. I don't know what kind of animal it came out of, but the shit was green.

Good times.

Photos by Dan.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Today's Top Story

"No, not the cats. Don't trust them. Their eyes.
Their eyes. They know too much."
Sleep Talkin' Man

Mass. Revolt

We have competing ideas in a democracy -- and hence competing parties -- for a reason. To paper them over and pretend they do not exist, particularly when the ideology of one of the parties has proven so devastating to the lives of everyday Americans, is not a virtue. It is an abdication of responsibility.
I don't disagree with this.
If Republicans had wanted universal health care, you would have seen commercials with heartless insurance agents stabbing babies and drinking their blood. You would have seen ads with desperate, laid-off old men offering to blow people for quarters so they could afford their insulin. You would have seen ads about how sad it is that a depressed middle-aged woman with a dream of a scrapbooking store is now suicidal over not being able to follow her small business dream because if she left her shitty office job, she'd lose her health care. The ad would have ended with a gunshot in darkness. People would have been begging for health care reform because Republicans would have made it seem like the world would fall apart without it.
Or this.

From David and Michael, respectively.

Noteworthy Names

Darly Zutt
Brandi Tudge
Merlene Strunk
LaVanda Duckwilder
Stoogie Boy Smith
Odd Stalebrink
Joe College
Faith Church
Cookie Booth
Eartha Ball
Penny Weiss
Minnie Cooper
Virginia Belle
Virginia Woods
Montana Meadows
Permelia Beavers
Bimbo Caparas
Genuine Ho
Ho Fuk
Capt. Hyman Shocker
Harry Hyman
Harry Kunze
Rev. R. Harry Dick
Woody Johnson
Dick Kok
Dick Trickle
John Uhrin
Edwin Cockshott
Anita Bibb
Fanny Rohr
Fannie Gross
Fannie Sizemore
Cheryl Bacon Rumpff
Othella Butt
Gaye Sodoma
Prof. Anil Dikshit
Christian Loveless
Christian Holler
Holler Thomas
Crispian Cuss
Butch Birdsong
Canary Brown
Kitty Redd
Hazel Gray
Hazel Wood
Lobie Stone
Diamond Green
Ruby Valentine
Rose Gardner
Valencia Bush
Tangarene Martinez
Valley Queen
Fairy Butcher
Curtina Hardware
Leather Pittman
Orlando Orifice
Phil Hollows
Lola Breed-Birth
Harry Pizza
Misty Mints
Misty Moomau
Marvin, Marvina, and Marzina Greene (siblings)
Camillo DiCamillo, Jr.
Joan Jones
Frances Francis
William Gilliam
Mary Barry
Mary Carey
Joni Maroney
Ann Sann
Nancy Ann Cianci

Annie M. Hall
(Ms.) Marion Barry
George Mason
Barbara Y. Bush
Madeline Albright
Howard Hughes
Gary T. Cooper
Roger Moore
Dan Glover
Tom Kruse
Ricky Nelson
John P. Lennon
Janet Jackson
Courtney Lust
Karen Ann Quinlan

Kathleen Severe, teacher
Hung Thanh Vo, arrested for indecent exposure
Deanna Hooker, arrested for prostitution

Jeff Rude, sports commentator
Danny Clubb, game warden

I'm not the only one who keeps a list.

Thanks to Derek for the link and to everyone who contributed names.

From Peggy.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Today's Top Story

From Tom.

Senior Moments

Senior year in college, I lived out in the sticks in a rickety old house with three friends. (Well, two friends and a flaky girl who went to school with us.) We rented the place for the ridiculous sum of $400 a month, if memory serves, from a guy who’d inherited it from his mother.

Back home in Maryland after graduation, I mused to my former housemate Joyce: “I wonder if the old lady died in the house or at a hospital.”

Giving me an odd look, Joyce said, “She died in your room. I thought you knew that.”

She probably froze to death, because the house didn’t seem to have a shred of insulation. The cold wasn’t so bad on its own, but any wind blew right through. The storm windows made as much sense as jewelry on a pauper … or a corpse.

“I’ve been trying to think what this place reminds me of,” said a visiting friend, deciding: “It’s like a bunch of shacks stuck together.”

To me it seemed more like a collection of rec rooms. Most of the ceilings were covered with acoustical tile, while the walls sported the kind of flimsy paneling that once graced basements across the land (real wood in the older part of the house, simulated in the newer part). My room even had a linoleum floor.

The property was fairly large, and we were responsible for cutting the grass, using an ancient, rusty riding mower. The steering wheel was long gone, replaced by two pairs of vice-grip pliers. They did the job, but it’s not a solution I would recommend for, say, a car. Trash pickup was once a week, and if we forgot to haul the cans out to the road, we had to either wait a whole week or find somewhere else to dispose of it – usually a dumpster behind a big store or a strip mall, furtively, after dark.

I developed a neurotic habit that year without realizing it: whenever I went grocery shopping, I had the feeling we needed margarine. This went on for some time until Joyce called me over to the refrigerator one day and pointed out the vast oleo stockpile at the back. Years later, I would have a similar episode with Calvin Klein underwear.

Something weird seemed to happen whenever I left town. After a trip to the mountains, I returned to find a dead chicken on the lawn like some hillbilly version of a Mafia threat. It was a huge, black thing, and stranger than its presence was the lack of any evident trauma. No blood, no missing feathers – it was as if the poor thing had just been strolling by and had a stroke.

A few months later, when I noticed a nasty odor in the kitchen, my housemates couldn’t smell it. I went home for spring break, but Joyce stayed behind. When I got back, she said, “Oh my god, you were right! I used the oven the other day, and the smell was so bad I had to turn it off. We need to find out what’s in there.”

So powerful was the fetor, we expected to discover a family of rats or maybe a python. It was therefore a surprise to find just a small, desiccated mouse stuck to the broiler. We threw it out, but avoided using the oven for the rest of the year.

After spending Easter weekend at the beach, I found a message from Joyce that my grandmother had called. When I called her back, she said, “A woman answered the phone earlier. Was that your maid?”

Choking back the laughter, I managed: “No, that was my roommate.”

“Oh,” she said, pausing. “You live with a woman?”

“Two of them, actually. Two girls, two guys.”


I later called my dad to make sure she hadn’t had a heart attack. But first I shared the conversation with my maid, who enjoyed it as much as I did.


From Tara.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Today's Top Story

How ... American.

From Betty Bowers.

Rabbit Run

Um ... wow.


The Late Show

"I'd rather peel off my skin and bathe my weeping raw flesh in a bath of vinegar than spend any time with you. But that's just my opinion. Don't take it personally."
Quite possibly the best site ever.

From Terry.
A young visitor and her toy elephant find that the elephant house at London Zoo is closed for the winter holidays, January 1927. (Fox Photos/Getty Images)

From Riley.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

'First a Presence'

The “outrageous majesty of his appearance,” as Wollcott Gibbs recalled it, proved something of a disadvantage in interview[s] with less resplendent subjects. Once, said Gibbs, the young Beebe covered a “negligible fire in a morning coat, and a tedious dinner of the New York Landscape Gardening society in top hat and tails.”
From Riley.
"It tastes hurty."

Ralph Wiggum


Link from Derek; photo by Tina.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Today's Top Story

An IG as a service dog? That's the real miracle.

From Claire.
Siamese twins. One ass. Sibling gay.

Six Word Stories

Gender Blenders

(806): You proceeded to call me a hoe and then informed me that Bear Grylls is and always will be more important than I am to you.
Texts From Last Night

Ad It Up

A model in 1937 shows the freedom the "rubber lung" brings to the arms and legs, allowing a girl with lungs paralyzed by disease to wear nice shoes.

From Riley.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Today's Top Story


It's a Wrap

"Today's elf is tomorrow's gnome."
David Sedaris
A couple of years after my diagnosis, mindful that I'd be losing my manual dexterity, I happened upon some cashmere wraps at an outdoor market in Florence. Simple and unadorned, they were like small blankets cut to enfold a body. No sleeves, no buttons.

Perfect, I thought. I treated myself to an olive one, and my mom bought me a gray one as an early Christmas present. They've been my winter "coats" ever since. Warm and soft, it feels a little like staying in bed.

"Love the cape," people would say. There's no hood or closure, though, and the effect isn't nearly so elegant, especially now that I'm wizened and hunched. I look like a wheeled gnome or an unusually clean homeless person.

The other day, on a walk around the block, I remarked, "I could be masturbating under here and no one would know."

I wasn't, though. It was too cold, and dry cleaning's expensive.

Write On

From the guy behind How To Use An Apostrophe:

Thanks to Peggy.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Today's Top Story

While a large part of the world is recovering from New Year’s Eve debauchery, a tiny hill town 30 miles north of Rome called Calcata is holding its annual holy procession today, a pious parade that the Vatican has tried to suppress for over a century: the Feast Day of the Holy Circumcision.
A woman gathers lotus flowers in An Giang Province, Vietnam.
The plant is highly valued, as its petals can be used in both salads
and tea, while the seeds are used in desserts. (Emma Lynch/BBC)

From Riley.