Friday, February 26, 2010

More Writing About Fucking

Earlier in this blog, I mentioned the fact that I don't like to use the word fuck to describe sexual intercourse. If you want to know my reasons, please click here for the post.

Somewhat connected to my reasons is this quote from the Sept. 27, 2007 issue of the New York Review of Books. It's from a review of a book by the noted MIT professor and linguist Steven Pinker:

Of particular interest to the grammarian is the fact that in English all the impolite words for the sexual act are transitive verbs, while all the police forms involve intransitive words: fuck, screw, hump, shag, bang versus have sex, make love, sleep together, go to bed, copulate. As Pinker astutely observes, the transitive sexual verbs, like other verbs in English, bluntly connote the nation of the motion involved in the reported action with an agent and a received of that motion, whereas the intransitive forms are discretely silent about exactly how the engaged objects move in space. The physical forcefulness of the act is thus underlines in the transitive forms but not in the intransitive forms. None of this explains why some verbs for intercourse are offensive while others are not, but it's surely significant that different physical images are conjured up by the different sexual locutions -- with fuck semantically and syntactically like stab and have sex like have lunch.

I forgot to note the author of this review and the book by Pinker that he or she was reviewing. For that, I apologize.

I recommend that you read any book by Pinker. I have found him very enlightening.

One Way To Determine Quality

If you ever wonder about the mentality of the people around you, please use this old Chinese saying to help you decide:
  • Large-minded or great-minded people talk about ideas.
  • Medium-minded people talk about events.
  • Small-minded people talk about other people.

The Age Of H

Ace: This is the age of H.

Deuce: What do you mean by that?

Ace: Think of all the things that are prominent that begin with the letter H -- like home, hearth ...

Deuce: And heroin.

Ace: Well, if you insist ... I'm also thinking of haste, house ... and horses.

Deuce: Hobbies.

Ace: And hobbyhorses.

Deuce: Harlequins.

Ace: Hallucinations.

Deuce: Harlots.

Ace: Hector -- guys named that.

Deuce: Holy water.

Ace: And holiness in general.

Deuce: Hops.

Ace: And hoppers.

Deuce: Hyacinths.

Ace: What's that?

Deuce: A flower.

Ace: Heaven.

Deuce: And definitely Hell!

Ace: Horse shoes.

Deuce: And horse shit!

Ace: Huckleberries.

Deuce: Hoplites.

Ace: What's that?

Deuce: Soldiers in ancient Greece.

Ace: Halls.

Deuce: Highways.

Ace: And add to that ... byways.

Deuce: Hobnailed boots.

Ace: Headlights.

Deuce: And highlights.

Ace: You know, I used to date a girl who had big breasts and frosted hair. But she wasn't all that smart. She had headlights and highlights -- but no bright lights.

Deuce: Hypocracy.

Ace: Hope.

Deuce: And hopelessness.

Ace: Hankerchiefs.

Deuce: Holes.

Ace: Holiness.

Deuce: You said that before!

Ace: Sorry.

Deuce: Haberdashers. And haberdasheries.

Ace: History.

Deuce: And horrors -- too often, history is a long list of horrors.

Ace: Habits.

Deuce: Haricots.

Ace: What's that?

Deuce: French for carrots.

Ace: Whores.

Deuce: That word begins with a W.

Ace: Yeah, but it's pronounced with an H.

Deuce: Holidays.

Ace: And holy days.

Deuce: And happy days.

Ace: Heritage

Deuce: You know, if there's a group or organization with heritage or liberty in its name, it's usually some conservative to reactionary operation. Worshiped George W. Bush. HATED Clinton. Not too fond of Obama -- but that's kept under wraps, because mentioning him would unveil their racism.

Ace: Hash.

Deuce: Hot.

Ace: Heat.

Deuce: Hums.

Ace: And humming.

Deuce: You forgot a big one -- HATE!

Ace: What -- no love?

Deuce: Hey -- you're the one who said this is the age of H. I'm just going along with you.

Ace: You're right.

Deuce: Let's stop this now. It's getting degenerate.

Ace: As if it was every generating anything in the first place.

Some Changes And An Explanation

In this post, I'll write about a change I made in my blog.

I've posted fictional pieces in this blog and labeled them vignettes and short stories. Here is the difference between them.

A vignette is a short scene that usually has no context. It's like a snapshot or a frame from a movie.

A short story has a beginning, a middle, and an end. It's more like a movie.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Jimmy Stewart Wows The Crowd

Here's another commonplace post. It appeared in the April 2003 issue of Vanity Fair magazine.

Jimmy Stewart ... in 1975, was asked to do a run of Harvey, his 1950 film success, on the stage in London. It's about a rather nebbishy man who has an invisible six-foot rabbit for a friend. My producer friend Jim Wharton and I went over to see it, and Jimmy gave a magnificent performance. I'll never forgot his curtain call. He came out and took a bow, and the English audience gave him a standing ovation. Then he did something magical. He turned to the wings and said, "Come on, Harvey, everyone wants to see you." By his gestures, he brought Harvey to the middle of the state and put his arm around him. Everybody in that theater would have sworn that he could actually see Harvey standing there with Jimmy. Then Jimmy stepped back and gave Harvey a solo bow, and the audience went wild.

I don't mention the author of it because I forgot to note it. For that, I apologize:

History And Money

This is another commonplace post. It's by Larry McMurtry, author of The Last Picture Show, Terms of Endearment, Lonesome Dove, and other books. It appeared in the March 24, 2005 issue of The New York Review of Books:

After visiting Tombstone (Arizona), I realized that the reason the O.K. Corral is so persistent in our culture is really quite simple; it's one of those lucky places where history is instantly converted into money. Much of the history may be ersatz, but all the money is real.


Below is my second commonplace post. It includes four short selections that I found last week, and post here for your illumination.

This is a rewording about a couple. It came from a profile in the New Yorker magazine. I eliminated their names because they weren't relevant:

She only had him. With time on her hands and few friends, she gradually became isolated and distraught, depressed at his long absences. Even sleep was hard for her; she relied on sleeping pills to calm herself.

This was in the November 2007 issue of Esquire magazine and is from Dave Grohl, leader of the Foo Fighters and former drummer of Nirvana:

Anybody who has to focus on being real has a problem. It's like having a panic attack over how you're prone to panic attacks.

This one is from the January 2007 issue of Esquire and is by R.J. from Davenport, Iowa:

If you look like Paul Giamatti but carry yourself like you're Brad Pitt, most people will see you as Brad Pitt.

This one is also from the same issue of Esquire as #3. It's from H.V. of Indianapolis:

When you're feeling your worst, your most insecure, write it down. I assure you that no matter how depressed you feel at the time, you won't believe how stupid you'll sound later when you read it back.

Fast, Cheap, And Good

I'll post this saying/old saw/truism/words of wisdom/whatever -- about the quality of a thing or product here:
  • If it's fast and cheap, it won't be good;
  • If it's cheap and good, it won't be fast;
  • If it's fast and good, it won't be cheap.

Gas Prices, Then And Now

While I was going through an old journal, I noted that gasoline cost $1.859 back on Feb. 27, 2009.

Compare that price to the one on Feb. 22 of this year: $2.599. That's 74 cents higher in about a year.

That's lower than the national average, according to a report by the Associated Press. That price is $2.648.

And the price is expected to get above $3 a gallon this summer, according to the same report.

That is exactly what Barack Obama needs.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Just Wondering ...

George Harrison, guitarist for the Beatles ...

and Tony Iommi, guitarist for Black Sabbath ...

Separated at birth? You be the judge.

They could be the same man. You've never seen them in the same band.

ADDENUM: I do share a name with George, but Harrison is his last name while Harrison is my middle name.

The Decline Of Dick

I noticed it a long time ago, but I never mentioned it, or wrote about it, until now.

Fewer Dicks are around any more.

Dick is a nickname for the given name of Richard. According to the site, here is how it came to be:

Medieval times brought about Dick as a nickname for Richard. The Normans, descendents of Vikings who resided in northern France, had a unique way of trilling their "r" sounds. When the English attempted to pronounce Richard as the Normans did, it was reported that they could not quite do it correctly and the "r" came off sounding like a "d". Thus Dick became a pet name for Richard.

My grandfather was named Richard. My father had two good friends named Richard. A good friend has a father named Richard. All were nicknamed Dick.

But as for men of my age, the nickname for Richard is mostly Rick and sometimes Rich.

I truly don't know offhand why it changed. I ought to do research on it.

But I believe it has come to this for these two reasons:

  • Dick as a synonym for penis
  • A man who's a fool and ass.
  • Richard Milhous Nixon, who used to be the most evil man who ran the U.S. government until Dick Cheney.
While I believe fewer men named Dick walk the earth, I bet the same percentage of men who are dicks are around. Because a dick by any other name is a dick.

French Canadian Bean Soup & So Forth

The last words of gangster Dutch Schultz have puzzled men since his death in 1935. Some think it's a code. Some think it's garbled nonsense and a very good imitation -- if unintended -- of the writings of Gertrude Stein.

Details of his life are here.

And here is a link to a transcription of the words themselves, which I put in my blog for your possible enlightenment and amusement.

The Health Of Some Counties

Things are somewhat healthy, and somewhat unhealthy.

So are the findings in a report released Wednesday about Indiana's 92 counties. It was produced by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin's Population Health Institute.

The rankings are based on behavior, access to health care, economics and environment.

I live near four counties. Here are their rankings:

  • Hamilton, 1st.
  • Hancock, 22nd.
  • Madison, 79th.
  • Marion, 80th.
The worst is Scott County.

A Few Words On Aging

Today, I will start a new department in my blog. I call it CPP -- short for CommonPlace Post.

It's based on the idea of a commonplace book. A good definition for it is here.

In the past, I had collected things that would've been written in a commonplace book, but I called it a commonplace folder. In the future, I'll post them here for your enlightment and illumination, and also so I can remember them instead of putting them in a drawer.

The first is from an article in the February 2010 issue of Gentleman's Quarterly about Ted Danson, best know for playing Sam Malone in the television sitcom Cheers. He speaks about George Christopher, a magazine editor he portrays in the show Bored to Death, which is broadcast by HBO, and Arthur Frobisher, a rich man he plays on the FX show Damages.

Danson says:

The connection I make between all these characters is that I, Ted, at 62, want to be relevant. My joints hurt. I'm slower. But I remember what it was like to run and play with the boys. I want to be one of the boys. And I think these characters what that, too. George Christopher is suffering all these things -- sadness and decay -- and when you fight aganst that and don't just let gravity pull you down, I think that's fun, too. I think it's fun to see people be so offbase. The 62-year-old man who wants to hand out with the 28-year-old boy and some pot and have a colonic. 'Don't leave me out! Whatever you're doing, I want to be part of it.' I totally identify with that. And it's a little sad and a little sweet and a little funny.

As a man in his middle 50s, I agree very much because it's very true.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Super Bowl Post Update

I've updated my post on the Super Bowl. I've intermingled the new additions with the old ones.

If you want to read the revised post, please click here.

They're So Much Better

The geezers -- old and bitter in soul, if not in years -- talk about celebrities and hippies and other people living irresponsible lives -- especially single black teenage girls who have children -- and they always say: "I live a much better life and no one recognizes me for doing that."

Break up this pity party.


What do you want for your efforts? A cookie? The Presidential Medal of Freedom?

(By the way, that's the highest civilian award given by the U.S. government.)

I guess if you get no recognition from others, it's not enough.

Hey -- God will reward you for living a good life. But tat will be in heaven, not on earth. He's in charge of divine justice.

You know God. Your minister, at that church you attend every Sunday, talks about him a lot.

You might remember that if you went to church for the right reasons: To praise God and thank him for your life, instead of going there to make business connections, or to meet a better class of people to possibly improve your business, or because your family has belongs to that church for several generations and you don't see any reason to change.

If I remember correctly, your church says Jesus is the Messiah.

And if I remember my Sunday School Bible lessons, Jesus spoke with scorn about people like you. He called them Pharisees.

Jesus came for the outcasts, not for self-righteous jackasses like you.

Now I'm not a Christian. I don't believe that Jesus was the Messiah. But I won't get into theological discussions now.

But I know that I was a Christian, and there is a brotherhood in Christ, I will skip as many of those family reunions as I can.

Frank On Women

While I was going through my notes, I came across another dispatch from my friend Frank.

I post this here for your amusement and enlightenment.
sometimes when I'm walking down the street, and the wind is blowing ... light enough enough to stir the skirts of the ladies ... i have this strong desire very strong in fact to lift the skirts of every woman i see ... that is if they're wearing skirts ... stick my head up those skirts, put down their panties ... if they're wearing any .. and breath the musk from their pussies ... oh in my mind how I swoon as i lick them suck them and thrill them until they come ... i sure as hell don't feel guilty about my desire ... only frustrated that I don't know any woman who would let me do this to her ... for I AM a pussy worshiper ... i'd take them in just as a Christian takes in communion ... and a lot of women don't like to be worshiped or be put on a pedestal for they fear they will disappoint their followers until blind worshipers become angry and hateful rebels against they thing they once worshiped ... and they fear the disappointments is inevitable ... there's something frustrating about the limits that people put on themselves or the same they feel about their sexuality, or fear that they will be punished if they use it ...
I'll say this Frank; he doesn't repress his thoughts and I'm the person to whom he can express them without fear or shame. I guess that's one part of being a friend.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Poem For Valentine's Day

I'll spend tomorrow -- Sunday, Feb. 14, also known as Valentine's Day -- by myself.

However, for those who have someone else in their lives, I offer you this:

For each other, they had a thing.
And then one night, they had a fling.
And how they made each other sing
In strongly orgasmic cries!

Father & Son

I'll tell you about two members of a family I know.

First is Peter Piper. He had an unusual hobby. He often picked a peck of pickled peppers. He offered some to me, but I declined because I don't like peppers.

I'm not sure how many picked peppers are in a peck.

Then there was Tom Piper, his son. He stole a pig and away he did run. But that was a youthful discretion and he has stayed a law-abiding citizen since then.

I wonder if he ever pickled the pork.

Avatar -- Only #20

By now, the movie Avatar has taken in the most absolute amount of money at the box office. According to records, the total is $642 million plus.

Whenever I hear that it's the all-time box office grosser, I disagree -- very strongly. Those who say that are being lazy.

According to the web site, if the box office grosses are adjusted because of inflation throughout the decades, the #1 movie of all time is -- as you probably guessed -- Gone With The Wind. It's followed by Star Wars, The Sound Of Music, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, and The Ten Commandments.

Those who want figures for the top 100 grossing movies can click here.

Accordingly, Avatar is only Number 20, but that's of now. Number 100, by the way, is Top Gun.

Just Wondering ...

Hamid Karzai, president of Afghanistan ...

And British actor Ben Kingsley, Oscar winner for his portrayal of Mohandas Gandhi ...

Separated at birth? You be the judge.

A Shooting In Alabama

I saw on TV Friday night that a professor in Alabama had killed three people. If you want details of the shooting, click here for more information.

When I heard it was a woman, I thought: What the hell? Women don't do the mass-murder shooting thing; that's usually done by men.

Strange. And so noted.

Life ... Too Much Of It ...

Life ...
too much of it
fucked-up people
fucking over
other fucked-up people
Clowns without greasepaint walk the streets in life outside the circus tent.

Too many people are like that.

Especially me.
He was the type of strongly hard-core and slightly paranoid conservative who thought The Weather Channel was part of the liberal media.
Anita wore white to show her innocence.
She wore blue to show her experience.
She wore red to show her desire.
are abounding.

are rotating.

It's later
Than you think.
Outer space; it's a far-out place!
Motel Indiana ... on Route 57, three miles north of town, next to Miller's Bible College and Barber School.
Grow the fuck up, you fuck up!
Jess, Bess, Tess ... I tell you all, it's just a mess!
What takes money for sex and swims upstream?
A prostitrout.
They act more American that George Washington eating an apple pie (with his wooden teeth, of course) during a baseball game on the Fourth of July.
This whore
Is for
Rent or sale.
Your choice,
Big Daddy.

There's Ernesto and his goddamn entourage. They couldn't do anything without making a big production of it.

And there were two girls in it. When they talked, they sounded like goddamn ducks.
Pain stopped by and wanted a minute of your time.
The couple's power dynamics were top dog and bottom bitch.
Finger fucking a slut in both holes is finger fucking good!
The adult movie is
XXX-ploding onto the movie screen!
YYY, you say?
Because we can.
NY not?
The instigator's main pleasure was making dreams go false instead of come true.

The Cake Was Her Idea

Charlie Besser, a mail carrier, was making his rounds on the last day before his retirement. After 35 years on the job, he was ready to move to Florida where he could fish year round.

He had just dropped off the mail at his last house on his route and had turned around to go back to the post office when he heard the door open and a voice say:

"Charlie, wait a minute."

He turned around and saw Sally Smith in the doorway. She was wearing a flimsy robe.

Now, Sally was a good-looking woman. Charlie would've sold his soul to the devil to fuck her -- even to see her naked.

"Yes, Mrs. Smith?" Charlie said.

"Please ... call me Sally. OK?" she said.


"I heard that you're retiring from the post office."

"Yep. Today's my last day."

"Wait there, Charlie. I have some things for you."

She went into the house and came back with a cake.

"It's a chocolate marble cake. If I'm right, you told me once that it was your favorite."

"It is, Sally. Thanks."

"I also have something else for you," Sally said and gave him an envelope.

He opened it and found a card wishing him well during his retirement and a $20 bill.

"Thanks for all the gifts," he said.

"Charlie ... I have one more gift for you."

She opened her robe and revealed to Charlie that she was naked underneath it. She put her arms around him, gave him a big French kiss, and began to grind against him.
She then took him by the hand and led him upstairs to her bedroom, where for the rest of the afternoon it was:


When they were through, Charlie said to Sally, "I appreciate the cake and the card and the $20, and that hot fuck we had, but ... I wonder why you went through all that for me?"

Sally said, "Last week I was talking to my husband about what to give you for your retirement. He said, 'Fuck the postman. Give him a card with some money in it.'"

She paused, then added:

"But the cake was my idea."

Destruction Work

I couldn't think of a better word for it.

It came to my mind late in February 2009 , when I drove past the site of an old Speedway gas station on the southwest side of my town. Heavy equipment were digging up the station building itself. Holes in the ground showed that its underground gasoline tanks already had been removed.

The Weather, About One Year Ago

I had complained about the weather often in this blog. If you want specific examples, click on any post that's labeled 'weather.'

As I was going to hrough my journal, I found these citations of the weather. I post them here for your enlightenment -- and mind.

All dates occured during the year 2009.

Jan. 27 -- About six to eight, possibly nine, inches of snow fell. Near Indianapolis International Airport, which is on the west side of the city, about 12 inches fell.

Jan. 29 -- The temperatures were in the single digits. Around 5 a.m., it was five degrees above zero.

Feb. 4 -- The temperatures again were in the single digits. The wind chill made it feel as if it was below zero.

Feb. 8 -- The high temperatures were in the middle 40s.

Feb. 9 -- The high temperatures were in the low 60s.

Two Actions To Take

I saw the nub of the following poem on the Internet. I didn't note who wrote it or where it was posted.

This is my addition to it:

Just run.
Run fast.
Never stop.

Just love.
Love deep.
Never stop.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Damn Weather Again ...

As of this afternoon, the National Weather Service is forecasting another heavy blizzard. It is predicted to be much like the one last week. You can read the details about that storm here.

The latest snow will start falling about midnight tonight and continue through Wednesday afternoon. The amount to fall is forecast to be between five to eight inches.

Roads will be bad because winds will blow and cause drifting.

Last week's snowfall didn't hit central Indianapolis as hard as Washington and other places on the East Coast, but still ... I'M GETTING GODDAMN TIRED OF IT!

This will be the last posting for a while. I'll be away from my computer and at a place where I can't post because it has no computer connection.

Goodbye for now. And watch this space. More posting to come.

Night Spreads And Tail Ends

Here' s a poem I've entitled Night Spreads. It's not one that I recently found in my notebooks, but one I had typed out. I don't know when I wrote it; vague memories tell me it might've been in the middle 1990s.


Night spreads and forwards before us
over the rooftops of this city
like the wings of a large, dark bird
flying on its hunt. and as night goes forward,
it does not think of us
as it comes to replace the day.
Soon, under night's protective wings,
men act as they would not
during the harsh, exacting light
of the pitiless day, its gods, and its priests.
Murders, lusts, thefts, lies, and secrets flourish
under the protection of night
which gives the promise
of anonymousness --
the crazy ones
do those things in the daytime,
anyway. that's why they're considered

You and I lay on a rooftop
watching the night spread as we left our room,
too hot for tolerance. As we watched
the night spread, the lights came up,
breezes came down, and we felt cooler.
But the heat came up as we made love
and we covered each other as the city
whirled and spirled around
beside us on the roofs, beneath us on the streets.
It sweat, we sweat, all sweat -- a good sweat.
The poisons left our bodies.
We drank some water, and a little bit
of red wine, cooled by ice,
as we rested while the night
covered us like a sheet.
and we wondered if the heat
would curdle the loves and hopes
of the city's residents
into hates and cynicisms.
If the poem above is like a kite, these tail end pieces are like the tail attached to it.
I want to be inside
the mind of a bird
to understand the
mysteries of
flight, especially
in the blindest
darkness of the
We talked of the differences between people who say maybe and the people who say perhaps.

We talked of people who are nice and good for the sake of being nice and good and the people who are nice and good so others won't be nasty or bad toward them.
I'm trying to imagine an oyster that's producing a pearl.

I wonder what it feels like.

Is it like a woman, pregnant?

Is is irritating at first, then do oysters get use to it?
She told me of a young man's face, smooth and blank, like that of a comic strip character. His eyes and dark pupils didn't help him make look more human.
I once sat, like a hen on a chickless egg, trying to hatch something that wasn't there.

Sterility, emptiness, passiveness -- nothing alive in the shell.

Incantations and drugs didn't help.

Patience is running out or getting smaller.


There's less of it inside me to use.
The stillness
in the center
of a circle --
that's how
I feel now.
It's hard to love
just anybody, but
it's easy to love
And by loving
a woman, I enter
the world outside
We slept.
We woke.
We dressed.
We left the house
where there was
no rest for
the wicked
no sleep for
the victims.
Lord Lord ... how mortal these fools be!
I saw the bohemian
who comes from the world
that considers a tie as
a hangman's noose for
the soul,
and a suit as a walking
combination of
coffin and
burial shroud.
"She may talk too much," said A to B. "But it's like the hum or a refrigerator. It's a sign that she's here and all's well with her. If I didn't hear it, I'd be worried."

"In the old days," said B to A, "people would've said that sound was like that of a teakettle brewing."
The womb
for the woman
is the equivalent
of the penis
for the man.

Think about it.
The rot of a dying gentility hung in one room. No air freshener or hardblowing breeze could remove it, for it had soak into the walls and floors. Only by tearing down the house could it be removed from the scene.
There's a world outside there that I must bump against at all times.

How much must I bump against it?

How much will it bump into me and against me -- either from indifference or malice?
I felt the adrenalin
of fight-flight fear.
We could plan a murder, or start a religion.
--Jim Morrison.

Piling Boxes

I once saw a man piling some boxes outside a day-care center at an intersection just east of the central business district of a midwestern city. I saw the smile on his face and I heard a happy singsong in his voice during his efforts, although his song had no words I could detect.

I then stood on the corner with my back to him. I smoked a cigarette and watched the parade of everyday life as I waited for a friend to appear.

I heard a woman say, "Charlie, take care of those boxes."

The man replied, "I am."

"Don't just thrown them around."

"I'm not."

She must've been out of earshot because I heard him say:

"Damn lady. Always nagging my ass. Hell, I'm havin' fun. This is just some old playground equipment in these boxes. I'm just puttin' them here so they can get picked up. Don't know who's gonna pick them up. She told me it had to be done, so I did it. She's so damn worried about the director climin' her ass about things. Hell, I'm just volunteering here. Thought I'd try to do some good for someone. Kids, maybe. They deserve it. Hell, they appreciate ol' Charlie talkin' with them and sometimes playin' with them. I'll just quit if it gets worse. It's no skin off my back. I"ll go do some good work elsewhere."

I heard no happy singsong in his voice when he started to pile the boxes again.

Different Outlooks

A lot of the tensions between black and whites come from honest mistakes that are made because the races come from different cultures and have different ways of looking at life.

Much of the time, whites make the mistakes.

For example, a black guy and a white guy were working in the same office. One Thursday evening, the white guys sais, "Oh John ... "

The black guy said, "Yes, Chad?"

"Brad, Thad, Jason and I are going skydiving this weekend. Would like to come along with us?"

"Now, Chad, do you remember that you asked me the same thing last fall?"

"Yes, I did."

"Do you remember what I tgold you then?"

"Not offhand."


"Wnhy, I understood all of it, John.:

"Good. My answer's stil the same."

Other examples include:
  • Square dancing;
  • Elvis still lives;
  • Nuzzling a dog.

Variations In Order

Here are three phrases that can be put into six different orders and still mean the same thing:

  • You can find more like it at this place;
  • You can find at this place more like it;
  • More like it at this place you can find;
  • More like it you can find at this place;
  • At this place you can find more like it;
  • At this place more like it you can find.

Some Notes On The Super Bowl

Here are some notes I want to post about yesterday's Super Bowl. If you want more complete reports, please read a newspaper, surf the net, or check the various broadcast media.
First, congratulations go to the New Orleans Saints for defeating the Indianapolis Colts 31-17.

The game definitely turned for the Saints when they recovered an onside kick to start the second half.

At the time, the Colts lead 10-6, but six plays after New Orleans recovered the ball, Saints quarterback Drew Brees hit running back Pierre Thomas for a 16-yard touchdown pass.
That gave New Orleans a 13-10 lead and a momentum they kept throughout the rest of the game.

If the Colts had recovered the kick and scored on that possession, they would've taken a 17-6 lead and probably would've won the game.

The kick was surprising and took guts to do. All praise must go to Saints head coach Sean Peyton for doing that.

Brees won the Most Valuable Player award for the game. He went 32 of 39 in passing for 288 yards and two touchdowns.

But I give the MVP award to the Saints' defense as a unit. It stymied the Colts' offense during the second half so much that Colts quarterback Peyton Manning never got his offense going.

Also, defensive back Tracy Porter returned an intercepted pass 74 years for a touchdown with 3:12 left in the game. That put the game out of reach of the Colts.

(Porter, by the way, went to Indiana University -- my alma mater.)
I had read and heard that the Saints played to win, while the Colts played not to lose.

If so, that's a big difference in approaches and mentalities.

It reminded me of the Notre Dame-Michigan State football game in 1966, when both teams were ranked high. Notre Dame kicked a field goal to tie the game 10-10, which was the final score.

And a local sports columnist started his colum about the game with this quote:

"Tie one for the Gipper."
The Super Bowl had anywhere between 106.5 million and 116.2 million viewers. If you wonder about the discrepancy, I can't find an accurate figure.

Whatever the exact figure is, it will be more than the 105.9 million viewers who watched the series finale of M*A*S*H in 1983.

(By the way, the United States has a population of 300 million plus. I wonder what the other people were watching or doing.)
I'm neither angry nor sad about the results. I follow the Colts, but I don't call myself a fan because fan is short for fanatic, and sure isn't me.

The results were a little disappointing, true,. But I remember a 9-6 loss to the Buffalo Bills in October 1997; the team has come a long way from that embarrassment.
Some Colts fans, I hear, said the second-half onside kick wasn't gentlemanly.

I must remind them that it was a football game, not a golf match. Golf has as unwritten etiquette, such as players calling themselves on bad shots.

Football is the third most violent sport I know. It's just above boxing and mixed martial arts.

Besides, all's fair in love and war. Sports is very often compared to war. Football is the sport most like war.
I heard too, too many Colts fans piss, bitch and moan about the loss. No doubt it fed their feelings of persecution and inferiority, which can get thick around here.

Ah, yes -- worrying about what other people think. Such provincials -- or, more strongly, hicks.

They especially mentioned folks on the East Coast and what they thought.

But something tells me that a lot of folks in, say, New York or Boston go around wondering, "Hey -- I hope Indianapolis residents don't think badly of me."
I didn't watch the halftime show, which featured the classic rock band The Who. It was an important band in my youth and their work meant a lot -- especially the album Who's Next.

But when I glanced at the TV set and saw Roger Daltry's father and Elvis Costello's grandfather performing ... I just couldn't watch any more of it.
The picture at the top of this post was taken by a photographer for Associated Press and downloaded from the net. The child is Brees' son, Baylin.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Damn Weather ...


The National Weather Service is forecasting, as of this morning, a severe weather advisory. It will start late tonight/early Friday morning and will continue through Saturday morning.

Between four to eight inches of snow is supposed to fall. About a tenth of an inch of ice will fall before that.

Travelling will be hazardous Friday morning because of ice on the roads and streets. It also will be hazardous in Friday afternoon and evening because blowing and drifting snow will cover the roads and visibility will be bad.

Weather like this is why I despise January and February.

I fear ice-covered streets and roads. In fact, I won't go onto the interstates if it's in the forecast because I'm afraid of sliding off and being ignored by semi drivers. I'll travel city streets if I must, even if it'll take longer.

Also, during several days in January, the temperature didn't get above 20 degrees. The lows were in the single digits, and wind chills made it seem a lot colder.

I can't wait until spring weather comes! I'm sick and tired of the cold, the lousy precipitation, and the overcast days. It sure doesn't help my temperment, which hasn't been the best because of recent developments (click here to see what they were).

ADDENUM: I would've started this post with the word cazart, which I though was a synonym for damn. But according to, cazart means "Holy shit! I should've known!"

It was either invented or popularized by Hunter Thompson.

Notes On The NFL Season

Here are a few things I'll note about the recent NFL season, which will end Sunday with the Super Bowl.
The Indianapolis Colts, my hometown team, will play the New Orleans Saints Sunday evening in Miami. They are favored by 5 points as of the odds posted this morning.

After the Colts beat the New York Jets 30-17 in the AFC championship game, I didn't hear or read much complaining around here about their 27-12 loss to the Jets on Dec. 17, which ended their chances for an undefeated season.

But if they had lost in the playoffs, the noise would've been loud and long.
I knew that Peyton Manning, the Colts' quarterback, was very, very good. But this year I realized that he is brilliant.

The Colts have a terrible running game and new receivers. But they have a 16-2 record because of his efforts.

He definitely deserved the MVP award, which ought to be called Player Of The Year.
Outside the Indianapolis area, it seems the rest of the world will be cheering for the Saints to win because they seem to have broken through to excellence after many seasons of mediocrity.

Now some people cheer for a team. I wonder how many cheer against it. Colts fans cheer against the New England Patriots because of the recent history between the two teams.

Now I respect the Patriots' performance during the 2000s, so I don't cheer against them.

But I'm no better in some ways. I cheer against the Dallas Cowboys. It goes back to the 1970s, when they were called "America's Team" and the authoritarian Tom Landry was coaching them and the authoritarian Roger Staubach was their quarterback.
If I had credentials for Media Day, I would've talked with the offensive linemen of both teams. They rarely get attention, unless they let a quarterback get sacked.

They also are said to be, as a group, the most thoughtful, if not smartest, members of their teams.

And by the way ... offensive tackle is a misnomer. They don't tackle anyone.
The Who will be playing at halftime. I'm no nationalist, but I'd rather see an American band play, because our football is a sport usually confined to the United States. What the English call football, Americans call soccer.
I hope Brett Favre retires and takes his ego with him.

Here's how he ended his last three seasons:
  • In 2010, as a quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, he threw an interception against the Saints near the end of regulation in the NFC title game;
  • In 2009, as a quarterback for the Jets, he threw an interception in the fourth quarter of the last game of the regular season with the playoffs on the line for the team;
  • In 2008, as a quarterback for the Green Bay Packers, he threwan interception in overtime against the New York Giants in the NFC title game.
Combine those incidents with his to-play-or-not-to-play Hamlet-like attitude about the end of his career. I won't go into the details now; check the Internet for them. But I believe they're connected by his egotism.

One quarterback who is retiring is Kurt Warner, who last played for the Arizona Cardinals.

I found it interesting that he wore number 13 on his jersey. He's a devout Christian, and 13 is an unlucky number in Western civilization because that was the number of men at the Last Supper.
I'll be watching the Super Bowl and will cheer for the Colts. I could post about it, but I'll see.
Here are the scores of three games during the last weekend of the regular season:
  • Dallas 24, Philadelphia Eagles 7;
  • Jets, 37, Cincinnati Bengals 7;
  • Packers 33, Cardinals 7.
By coincidence, these six teams played each other again during the first week of the playoffs. The scores were:
  • Jets 24, Bengals 14;
  • Cowboys 34, Eagles 14;
  • Cardinals 51, Packers 45 (in overtime).

What The Hell ...

I recently found these pictures on the Internet. After I looked at them, I thought: What the hell ... ?

All of them, by coincidence, involve transportation of some sort.

The Ladies Who Lunch

When Johnson was younger, he sometimes ate some meals at a restaurant popular with women often called The Ladies Who Lunch. He went there because he liked the food and the atmosphere.

He once heard this conversation from a table behind him.

"That dullard of a husband of mine," said Ms. A. "I wanted to redo the living room, and you know what he wanted? He wanted to make it look like a hotel lobby."

"Only smaller and warmer, no doubt," said Ms. B.

"And I wanted something a little more domestic. I mean, it is my house too, after all. What's wrong w9ith a few ruffles here and there, and some dusters for the furniture? I asked him that, but he disagreed. We got into an argument about it and he slept on the couch that night. It's not the first time that happened, but it's the first time it's happened over something like redecorating the living room.;"

"I think he was just being himself."

"I think he was just being a man about it."

"Jack and I have kind of the same differences ... "

He heard their sighs but went back to his lunch because it was getting cold.

After he left the restaurant, he wondered how many times love had died in a marriage and how many times tolerance came from disgust, indifferent, or fatigue.

He also wondered how many women and their husbands own houses where the furnishings were more interesting that they are.

After he got older, the wife of a friend told him this wisdom: After a woman turns 45 years old, she often becomes less interested in how they look and more interested in how their homes look.

Bad Gifts For Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day will be a week from this Sunday -- ten days away.

Since I'm single, I don't have to worry about getting something for my significant other.

I saw this suggestions for things NOT to get and the reasons why:

Candy is fattening and flowers die.

I pass it onto you for your enlightenment.

Things You Own

I recently realized that I own too many things.

I have to store them, keep them clean, make sure they don't get stolen, and insure some of them.

I don't own them; they own me.

So I'm getting rid of some of them.

As I go through my things, I've found that they come in three different groups:
  • Stuff -- Things that I love or use a lot.
  • Possession -- things I like and use sometimes. they are nice to have around ifg you need them.
  • Junk -- I don't like them at all or they aren't useful at all
(By the way, if you have a roommate, it's always your stuff but it's their junk.)

When you look at some things, I often wonder how it got into my place:
  • Was it on sale and the price was cheap?
  • Did an old girlfriend like it and give it to you?
  • Was it a gift from someone with good intentions but clueless -- like your grandparents?
I have this advice; please don't trade your extra things. You're often trading your junk for someone else's junk.

Putting extra things in a storage facility for use later is not the answer. You don't get rid of them; you just put them aside for a while and you must deal with them sooner or later.

And if the storage facility goes out of business, where do they put those things that were stored there?

My mind reels in puzzlement.

When you go through your things, you might get lucky. You might find something valuable enough to sell for a good price or get a tax writeoff if you donate it to a museum or a charity.

But don't consider doing that for eight-track players, Members Only and Nehru jackiets, and old copies of National Geographic. You have to pay people to take them away.

Ties And Other Items Of Clothing

Here's some more correspondence from my friend Frank. I post it here for your illumination:

i don't know why men wear ties ... do you? ... they're as relevant to clothes as the appendix is to your body ... we need to wear clothes because a lot of us just aren't reading for those nude modeling jobs ... it's obvious why you wear pants ... and you wear belts to keep them up ... shirts you wear for the same reason as pants ... and you wear a coat to keep warm ... ties don't keep your neck warm in cold weather ... at least not my neck ... scarves do that very well ... men wear ties so guidos can't unbutton their shirts and show of their chest hairs at work ... some men who wear ties with fancy patterns like paisleys ... do those patterns say i might be a dullard and my suits have no flair but this tie i'm wearing shows to those in the know my inner freak because it's in a paisley pattern ... it's an LSD thing ... tripping on acid ... you just might understand...

More Of The Sounds Of My Life At The Time

About a year ago, I posted the names of some albums that were playing through the air and my mind during my senior year in high school. The list, if you want to see it, is here.

Recently, I remembered another album: There's A Riot Going On, by Sly and the Family Stone, especially the three singles from it: Running Away, You Caught Me (Smilin'), and Family Affair.

Oddly enough, it was the only record where the musicians were mostly black.

Monday, February 1, 2010


Simon Smiddo had decided this about loyalty: He would be loyal to those who shared his beliefs. If that alienated any member of his family, that was the way it would be and tough shit for them.

As for his profession, he would not be loyal to those who were terrible at it or immoral in practicing it. If this alienated anyone he worked with, that was the way it would be and tough shit for them


Up and down are opposites. But if you use the word tearing with them, you might think that they mean about the same thing.

But they don't, truly.

At first, I thought they did. But after I gave it more thought, I realized this:
  • Tearing up is usually something you do with your hands, such as tearing up a piece of paper.
  • Tearing down is tearing on a bigger object that you can't hold, such as tearing down a ruin of a house.

Before The Fact

I found this on the net while surfing it last month. It comes from a blog written by Luc Sante, a native of Belgium who moved to the United States with his parents as a youth and has written about New York things.

If you want to read the entire post about it, and I recomment that you do, the link at his blog is here.

Moving Forward ...

I thought of posting about the death of my parents, and had planned to do it before today. However, I've found that I just won't go through some notes in a folder about that.

I didn't post anything else except for the one above this one until today out of respect for their deaths. With that date here today, so I'll post more often.

I found this on the Internet. I post it here for you and especially for me. I'll try to remember them. Better yet, I will try to do them.
You are not alone.

Join us.

Many of us will NOT give up.

Hope is still alive.

Somebody somewhere loves you.

Pass this along.