A Rachel Ray ad was pulled because she was wearing a scarf.

Yes, you heard me. A scarf.

It’s one of those scarves that all my hippie-dippie friends in high school wore.


Apparently, that crazy-ass bitch Michele Malkin who, being an Asian-American (Japanese Filipino [thanks to JCW], specifically) wrote an entire book justifying the Japanese interment camps during WWII, says that this kind of scarf has been worn by “terrorists” like Yasser Arafat and “popularized” by Muslim extremists. Does she really believe that extremists are also fashionistas? And who’s out there aping their fashion sense? Good lord.

Michele Malkin is seriously fucked up. Beyond fucked up: she clearly has white-envy, clearly has penis-envy, clearly hates everything about herself she works goddamned hard to make sure that white male establishment is reinforced with the idea that non-white females are as inferior as they already believe them to be. Here’s some advice, Michele, from someone who is white, has a penis: you’re still into men, which means the white establishment will find you inferior anyway.

Note to white male establishment: generalities are stupid, especially when based on such a small data set as a single person. Asian females aren’t inferior to you, but Michele Malkin is.

Fucking Rachel Ray; terrorists; scarf. And that adds up to promoting terrorism instead of fucking DONUTS AND COFFEE.

I love Rachel Ray. Love love love. And Michele Malkin? She’s so fucked up she’s barely human. Having said that, I still feel like I’m giving Malkin too much credit.

Let’s lock Malkin up in an interment camp for one. And make her wear a kiffiyeh. And force her to make bukkake porn. Just kidding—someone that self-loathing doesn’t have to be forced.

Baby It’s Cold Outside

The Phoenix mission to Mars has been picture perfect so far. It landed only slightly askance from where they’d pinpointed it, but it landed One quarter of one percent degrees off of vertical. Holy crap.<?p>

phoenix_lander1.jpg <br/>

It’s near the north pole, so two things:

  1. It’s frickin’ cold outside, Mr. Bigglesworth.
  2. Lots and lots of life-preserving/sustaining/archiving ice, I hope!

All my life I’ve dreamed of space and have believed all obstacles to be impermanent. So while I can’t say I’m surprised we’ve gone where we’ve gone, it’s just an unbelievably huge thrill to see it, understand it and live with the implications of it.

And if #2 above is true, how will that taste to dogmatics who put Earth at the center of the universe?

The Parade Passed By

Broadway Showtunes Queen til the end.

And the end—an end—feels near.

A hundred thousand people (or more) are over in the Castro celebrating something the vast majority of them had no hand in. In a very local sense, I suppose the word for this is “entitled”: a wish, a hope and out of the blue falls same-sex marriage and they celebrate. Now, not that I’ve contributed much to the cause of same-sex marriage, but I’ve always had a profound respect for the institution. I suppose this is the contrapositive of the argument that marriage is a sacred institution whose boundaries are rigid, whose boundaries would snap rather than bend and those who believe that’s always for the worse.

So I respect the fact of it. The fact that my parents have been together for very close to 47 years. I don’t know if they’ve been completely happy overall. I suspect they would tell you quite earnestly that they are, that they have been. That overall, it was the right thing to stay together rather than seek greener pastures. This is one topic I don’t think I could ever broach with my parents adult to adult; I don’t know if that’s because of who I am, who they are, or if that’s just a preserved attribute of my family’s history.

On the flip side, I tend to agree with a friend of mine who put it, “In my book, you don’t get points just for staying together.” Meaning that if two people are miserable together, after trying everything, or after not caring enough to try anything, just dissolve the union, at least in a civil sense: and do it civilly, as adults, ok?

Life is complicated, which makes life difficult, especially for the emotionally-retarded. You can spot the emotionally-retarded quite easily: they’re the ones who sit back and expect things. They’re the ones who ignore consequences. They’re the ones who surrendered to their ids a long, long time ago. Much as I hate Freud, his framework is helpful here: the only way to give complete power to the id is to murder the super-ego and keep the ego distracted. Distract it with neediness, distract it by depending on an external view for its own robustness (which is to say, it lacks robustness entirely). Notches on a bedpost, avoidance of commitment—and I’m not talking about marriage or relationship here, I’m taking about fear of choice and fear of results of a choice, fear of missing out on something the capricious id would have liked, fear of the obsessive id driving a truck through the ego’s home when it doesn’t get what it wants.

In general, well, just Fear. Fear is a consumer. Fear conflates. Fear chooses all of it, which is to say it makes no choice at all.

The emotionally retarded are afraid, as are we all. The difference is just that they expect their fears to be allayed without having to lift a finger. How? By avoidance again. Avoidance of conflict, avoidance of the hard metal of reality, avoidance of the Outside (and you know I don’t mean out of doors). By the alchemical short-sightedness that feeds the id that spins the artifice of no-dissent, no-challenge. Monoclonal individualism as a social construct.

The sequacious lot huddle together to protect themselves from interlopers who vary from the larger lot, because that’s the only way to maintain the prevention of maturation: there’s no such thing as a mature id. So they pile paralogism on top of paralogism, keeping the whole mess intact with spit and barbed-wire, bound up in a thick, glaucous layer of self-imposed ignorance.

Is it time yet or time past where I should put up a circle of orange traffic cones warning people that I am opinionated and that these are my opinions? Strongly so, but not out of order or out of turn. Opinions do not come easily to me. Where possible, they are backed by fact, simple or—where that same sequacious lot dare not venture for fear of exposure to strange elements—subtle fact. Where not, they are formed by personality spinning out a reticulum of relationships between and among fact. Defensible, always defensible, except where they cannot be, and then it comes down to disagreement, difference of opinion. Set up a situation like that and see who runs away or attempts to preempt and there you’ll find the emotionally retarded.

Am I one of that lot? Well, challenge me and see if I stay around for the argument, and not argument in the sense of raised voices and emotional outbursts, but rather argument as presentation of fact and informed opinion. Argument, whose function is nothing more and nothing less than to change the nature of truth.

This population are some of the people who’ve been handed marriage. For real. Loathe as I would ever be to discriminate or deny two consenting, chronologically-adult people from entering into a marriage, I do allow myself opinion. In case you hadn’t noticed.

What will change in the short-term? Relationships will go to Marriages and the State is both empowered and required to recognize such Unions. Perhaps for a little while some might look to all the examples of marriage they have before them, good ones and bad ones, successful ones and those which divorce, and perhaps believe it means something more than what they had before.

But none of the people I’ve described are likely to change. There will be no evidence of a relationship cum marriage, there will be no example to others of what a marriage looks like, because it won’t look like anything new: couples entering bars and their body language never gives it away that they’re together as they close in on whatever their respective ids want. Off, off they go without regard for anyone but themselves. Collectively—and I’ve watched this happen—the open door policy breathes out contagion to this world in the form of expecting less. Those who are single by fiat must be let into the relationship and become subject to its rules, must expect that the only valid fantasy allowed is the one that the married person permits to happen, which is usually the fantasy that his id plays out, paving over the id and ego of the single person whose super-ego was ignored. Dragged into the relationship for frictional scenario(s) and just as unceremoniously ejaculated out of it.

Am I not allowed an exegesis on this happy day of the advent of state-recognized same-sex marriages?

In the longer term—for those who contemplate or simply recognize that there is such a thing as “longer term”—marriage is marriage is marriage, and while same-sex couples will bring something positive to the marriage table, it won’t be anytime soon. Not soon enough for those of us achingly ready for all those longer term, more mature things like deep commitment without fear, being exemplary to others, at least to some extent and being able to depend truly on the spouse sticking around to fight for the relationship instead of running out to burn off all that “icky” negativity elsewhere and with someone else. I happen to think that’s a shitty way to expend energy when it could be better spent maintaining or enriching a marriage.

It’s all about showing up. Simply showing up. My friend, a doctor, told me that once: set aside all the majesty, mystery, vauntedness of a job/relationship/person and it all comes down to the same thing. Showing up.

It’s been a long time since that kind of dependability, comfort, trust, expectation have been there in my life. And going back to where those things weren’t there to catch me when I was falling as I truly expected them to be, I don’t think revising history by slapping a capital M on any of those relationships would have changed anything even one mote.

Marriage is ours now, at least until November. I wonder how many of those celebrating its arrival today will see it through November, working to earn it, to appreciate it, to keep the nay-sayers and the closed-minded voters at bay.

If you appreciate someone, you fight to keep him close to you. You let him know it every day in deed and not just in word. You carve out a private space, a somewhere-only-we-know and you let no one else even know such a private intimacy exists. When he needs you, you’re there. When you need him, he should be there and if he’s not? Well, learn. Learn and act. When you have conflict, you stick around to resolve it, knowing that it might be difficult, knowing it might have consequences, but in the end trusting that the other will still love and respect you when the conflict recedes. Think I’m rigid or provincial? Stick around and convince me of it. Feel threatened by such words? Challenge it. At least acknowledge that there is a world of people who don’t feel and believe and agree with every little thing you do. If that’s unsettling to you to the point of seeking safe ground, well, you know how I’ll interpret that. Run away? Stay away.

A private and precious intimacy, that’s the kind of marriage I’d want. And I’ve learned not to settle for anything less. Better to be alone and know you’re about to make a hard landing than to settle for being with someone you know won’t bother catching you, that someone who’s wearing a scarlet M and a matching ring.

So congratulations all, whether you understand it or not.

Iron Man

At the risk of offending comic book nerds everywhere—oh, who am I kidding, I’m about to offend every comic book nerd out there—I just saw Iron Man and, well?


The movie spent a third of its time expositing a comic-book-obvious character reversal, then spent another half of it documenting the trials and refinements of the suit. The suit! Not the character, the suit!

Spoilers after the break.

Continue reading Iron Man

A Buffered Solution

I remember when my life was resplendent.

The difficult word in that sentence by the way, is ‘remember’ and not ‘resplendent’ as you vocabulary Nazi’s out there might have presumed. Apologies. When splendor evaporates it leaves a vacuum that nature, it turns out, does not abhor. Instead it uses the open spaces to store the world’s bitterness. Randomly chosen. And not being a perfect container, it leaks out of me.

‘Remember’ is a word that’s more than a word, or rather, functions more than just a word: it’s a pose, a posture, an historical contrast and context. It’s looking back, it’s revisiting a place that is no more, a thing that is gone, a person or persons dead. And not being a perfect rememberer, the remembering misshapes the past and reassembles it into something where not all the pieces fit.

In lacking splendor, the shadows become the brighter spots, relatively, and having had splendor, there was too much color and light to bother with the shadows. In comparing the then-colors with the now-shadows, it turns out I was right: there are only dregs to be found in the shadows. Dregs and lesser mysteries, the ones that drain instead of sustain, the ones to be afraid of and not in awe of, the ones that weaken you into fear put you behind a gun rather than strengthen you to take a chance on peace.

There’s a difference, you know, between being aimless and merely being untethered, and I bet you might guess which one belongs to shadows and which to color and light, and there are very few things which can disturb the stability of one’s current state of mind and therein lies the rub: those things and times and people who worked so very hard to drag you down leave an equally difficult job for you and for other things and times and people to return you to the sunny side of the equivalence point.

Difficulties aside, did the drain of splendor happen with a single word? deed? silence? inaction? Do these things threshold or is my tendency to accumulate gravity what makes each and every stab and pinch and tweak pile upon me?

Should I rethink and re-remember the past in a way that transforms my psychological and historical baggage into balloons to lift me back into the light? Should I invest my time from now forward only in things and places and people who share energies with me instead of demanding them from me? And which is the biggest drain, a person, a place or things?

Perhaps it’s a combination of all three: people of a certain kind change the place they live in by how they treat each other and which aspects of each other they consider merely things. Or perhaps it’s the horrifying amount of energy people devote to the retardation of time itself to approach something approaching an eternal-now where contentedness is settled for because gray is better than black, and white is just too much to risk anything on.

Sometimes I look at the world and see it bounded on one side by a punch line and on the other side by a whole joke:

  1. “No soap, radio.”
  2. Patient: “Doc, it hurts when I do that.” Doctor: “Well, don’t do that.”

Don’t worry. If you don’t get what I’m saying then either you’re stupid or I am.

Here beneath the shadows I’m always being told I’m stupid. So I guess that settles it.

Ted, The Giddy Goon

It’s kind of strange to say that meeting a new friend (whereby ‘meeting’ and ‘new’ I mean ‘in person after a long time as blog acquaintances’) put me in the mindset of some kind of old school week, but that’s exactly how it went down. Ted Gideonse of The Gideonse Bible came up to San Francisco last weekend and we hung out quite a bit. Never running out of things to say, having real conversations about real things, using words I know without having to second-guess my audience. Generally a refreshing and enormously enjoyable time for me, in a time when it was badly needed.

To give you a the smallest part of an idea about Ted, here’s a bit from his website, admonitions to his potential audience:

    Qualification: Do not read this site of you are:<br/>
  • a small child
  • easily offended
  • confused by big words
  • litigious
  • prone to psychotic splits

In other words, my kinda guy. Sharp wit, off-the-charts smart, well-spoken, and perhaps most importantly, a warm and decent man.

Why does life have to be any more political or obfuscated than that? Even the Golden Rule holds hostage: do unto others as you would have them do unto you? There are a lot of self-esteemless people out there who actually want to be treated badly, beaten up, insulted, denigrated, etc. I prefer this one: be nice. Period. And the worthwhile people will show up in your life.

Please, just take that small chance.

But back to last weekend. It was as terrific a few days as I’ve had in a long time. Parts of my brain were exercised that had gone to flab a long time ago, pale and shutdown for lack of opportunity around others.

I hope he comes back soon. And I hope he brings his partner Rob with him next time.

So thanks for a great weekend, Ted.

Bonk! Bonk! On The Head! Bonk! Bonk!

Nine sentences, twenty-eight seconds of film. Huuuuuuge waste of time.


I TiVo’d The Fountainhead a few days ago. Well, you didn’t expect me to actually read Ayn Rand, did you? Good lord. Read that dialog.

I stopped watching. But then I decided to rubberneck (the only way to describe watching and listening to something like this). This scene dissolves to a friend telling him to compromise, then dissolves to an architectural firm where he gets put down, etc.

“Oh my God, Ayn!” God of Biscuits rages. “Could you be any less subtle?” (GoB has been known to channel Chandler Bing).

But seriously, Ms. Rand wrote the screenplay of her novel. Can’t you picture her salivating at the chance to push her religion of Faith in Existence—a tarted up philosophy of Everyone For Him/Herself—to the masses? To get everyone to think just like her?

I’ve written about her before (did I just masturblog in public?), but to see it up there on the silver screen (it’s a black and white movie from 1949)? Yeah, she’s just as tedious on film, as you can see by the opening dialog. But picture this: picture her sitting at a typewriter salivating and thinking “me! me! me! It’s all me! I’ve done everything myself and owe no one else my success! I’ll make millions from this film—and without anyone’s help! Because if anyone ever helped me, they’d be hurting me! My senses tell me what exists, as I clatter away at the keys, bringing my story into existence and—oh, wait, it existed before! It did! In my mind, which any one of the five only senses will confirm—oh, wait. Millions! I’ll make millions! And it will all be because of me and no one else. I’ll make more money than I can ever spend! The extra can go to feed the poor because—wait, no! I’d never be so cruel as to feed a man a meal he didn’t earn himself! …”

Blah blah blah. God, what a heartless bitch she was.

Running with Syzygy

I am Norman Burroughs: watery blue eyes, disappointed, dispirited, plowed under, a melancholiac. Gravity works differently on me: I accumulate it.

Historically I’ve considered being disappointed in others an indulgence, a crude luxury. Bad taste that comes back to bite you on the ass. I was wrong: sometimes that which is must be spoken of. In pure and simple terms.

But it’s also the surest way to get you into a trouble you don’t deserve, surest way to get myself into trouble. Trouble deflected, trouble no one took the trouble to create invective much less hurl it themselves. Too much effort: it’s trouble deflected. The trespasses of others made into mine.

Perhaps that’s where all this extra gravity is coming from: ceramic hearts deflecting cold stabs where I was expecting the warmth of a beating human one.

Never say “it can’t get any worse” unless you’re on the last breath or two from an expected death.