Tuesday, March 28, 2006


Hey folks!

     Well, it seems I've been forced to take a vacation from my online chatter since my computer is in the shop (again!). 

     Hopefully, I'll be back by Friday. 



P.S.  Keep those emails coming.  It's great to hear from y'all. 

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Damn the Man!

    Zounds!  It would seem I've broken several obscure laws in my great state of Wisconsin --where margarine was once illegal (yeehaa!  I hate margarine).

    Aside from that, I can't wait until Paul Cameron finds out: "In Wisconsin you are allowed to marry your house." 

    So, go to  CrazyLaws.com - Dumb Laws  and see just how guilty you are in your own state.  And, as for me, I'm going to do my best not to wake any sleeping firemen, or eat any apple-pie sans cheese. 



Wednesday, March 22, 2006

No Humpbacks!

    In his blog, By the way..., Hugo-nominated author John Scalzi brought up how scientists now believe that the songs of humpback whales are actually a language of some sort. 
    Now, I'm not going to bore you with no end of scientific jargon and mumbo-jumbo.  If you want that, go read Mr. Scalzi's blog.  You see, people!  I get my information from the inerrant word of God contained within the Bible, where bats are birds (Lev. 11:13-19), rabbits chew a cud (Lev. 11:6), and I'm pretty sure had He had the time, God would have gotten around to saying that whales are, in fact, fish.
    Needless to say, these fish are in American waters speaking a language all their own.  I say Get Out, humpbacks!  Either speak English --nay!  Speak American!-- or just keep swimming right on up to Canada.  We've got better things to do than learn your humpback language. 
    Now, what if one of these Godless "scientists" manages to figure out what these humpbacks are saying?  What do you think they're talking about? 
    I'm pretty sure these humpback's are spewing out the typical, whiney, hippy-Liberal talking points, such as: "Please stop hunting us to extinction!"  Or, "Please stop dumping your toxic waste and dead mobsters in our ocean." Or, "Can we have health care?  Waaa...waaa...waaa..." 
    I'm sorry, but I've heard enough Commie-Liberal nonsense from likes of Russ Feingold, and I don't need to hear anymore from these ungrateful fish.  You're in American waters.  I say you stop whining or leave.  These fish just hang out along the American shoreline, breeding like cud-chewing rabbits without working or paying taxes, and we're suddenly supposed to care what they have to say?   You didn't hear the spotted owl whine like this,did you?  No.  That bird took it like a true American.  In silence!

Monday, March 20, 2006


    So, I have a mission for all the amateur, dream-analyzing folks out there.  Let me tell you about the dream I had last night. 

    I dreamt that I was sleeping. 

    Am I the only one who thinks that's pretty dang weird?

I Am in the Wrong Line of Work...

AOL News: Top News - 1,500 Venezuelans Pose Nude in Public

1,500 Venezuelans Pose Nude in Public

Citizens Take It Off for American Photographer
CARACAS, Venezuela (March 20) - More than 1,500 Venezuelans shed their clothes on a main city avenue Sunday to pose for American photographer Spencer Tunick, forming a human mosaic in front of a national symbol: a statue of independence hero Simon Bolivar.
     I know.  It's art.  And, a knuckle-dragging oaf such as myself shouldn't be thinking about complicated things like aesthetics and whatnots.  But, you have to admit, it would be pretty dang cool stepping off an airplane in Venezuela with your camera in hand and saying something like, "I need 1,500 of your people to get naked for me right now!"  And, they agree.
     I'm pretty sure if I showed up with my little cardboard disposable camera and said something like that, I think the good folks of Venezuela would put me on the first flight out of their country.  
     So, is it that I simply need a fancier camera?  Do I start with one naked person and work my way up to the thousands?  How does a photographer achieve such power so as to get this many people to willingly do something which they would probably never think of doing?  

Sunday, March 19, 2006

It's Party Time...

    In Assignment #103, the always curious John Scalzi would like to know five songs we would pick to get a party rolling. 
    This is a pretty rough one for me.  I tend to see music as important to the dynamics of a party, but it depends upon the crowd, the reason for the party, and any other number of odd little variables which may pop up.  For example, my buddy John's margarita parties have become something of a legendary affair with Jimmy Buffett, Bob Marley, and even the somewhat heavy-ended beach-party music put out by Van Halen in the days of Sammy Hagar. 
    Then, there's my niece's "Sing and Dance" parties which roll until sunrise with me playing no-end of songs on my guitar (usually it's Dave Matthews because it's just a heck of a lot of fun to play and sing). 
    Anyway, since this is MY party, here's what I would play to get it rolling:
  • "Feelin' Alright" from Joe Cocker: Live.  I think the first few notes of this song really let you know what kind of party you've stumbled in on. 
  • "We're Havin' a Party" from Southside Johnny.  I don't know why, exactly, but this one's always been a favorite of mine.  Something about it just has a way of letting me know that I am supposed to be having fun.  
  • "Blister in the Sun" from The Violent Femmes.  The live acoustic version of this song has a really fun energy to it, and it gets folks clapping, dancing, and singing along.  
  • "Closer to Free" from the BoDeans.  Another local Milwaukee favorite of mine.  I remember seeing these guys play weekly Thursday night gigs at the pub around the corner from my house, and they always tore it up.  In the right environment, this tune can really make people jump.
  • "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window" from Joe Cocker: Live (again).  Joe Cocker's version of this song really has a HUGE sound to it.  It starts big, and just keeps rolling.  
    Of course, now that the party's going, we have to end it somehow, right?  That's a pretty tall-order when you sit down and actually think about it.  I suppose since it's my party, I'd probably have to pick up a guitar and play something like "Keep Me in Your Heart" from the late, great Warren Zevon.  But, depending upon the situation, I may just find myself forced to play "Lawyers, Guns and Money."
    Well, there you have it.  I hope you enjoy the list. 

Saturday, March 18, 2006

I Survived Another Holiday!

    For future reference, if I ever say something like, "hey!  I think a shot of Irish Whiskey would be quite yummy right about now," I want you to slap me.  Strike that!  I want you to pummel me into a drooling mess.  You have my permission, I won't press charges, and trust me, you'll be doing the world a favor. 
    I awoke this morning with a taste in my mouth that was suspiciously similar to the taste of a bathroom floor in a Belfast oil refinery (just don't ask me to explain how I know what an oil-refinery restroom tastes like, okay?).  And, to make matters worse, everything I put into my mouth continued to taste a hell of a lot like cheap Irish whiskey.  Coffee?  It tasted like Irish coffee (not bad).  Orange juice?  It tasted like Irish orange juice (very bad).  Toothpaste, mouthwash, battery acid: everything I put in my head served only to remind me what a damn stupid fool I was the previous night. 
    The good news is that I had a LOT of fun, apparently.  I remember a conversation with a school-teacher.  She asked why I was more tan than my pasty twin brother who I dragged along with me kicking and screaming.  I told her something about being in the porn industry, and the scary thing is, I think she believed me. 
    Then, the ubiquitous angry boyfriend wanted to pound some much-needed sense into my head.  And, when he came over to tell me that he wanted to put some lumps on my noggin for staring at his lady-friend, I had to explain that though his girlfriend is really attractive, and that he's probably a pretty lucky guy, the reason that I was staring at her had little to do with her delicate beauty, but rather, I found myself fascinated by the huge gravity-defying booger dangling from her nose.  And, the more I explained, the more he seemed fascinated by it too.  Who says I have trouble making friends?  We even sealed our new-found friendship in a drunken pact involving Kleenex and even more bad whiskey.
    Anyway, I seemed to have survived another St. Paddy's day.  I don't tend to tear it up on many holidays, but this one's always fun.  So is Arbor Day, but that's another story. 
See ya,

Friday, March 17, 2006


You Are Heineken

You appreciate a good beer, but you're not a snob about it.
You like your beer mild and easy to drink, so you can concentrate on being drunk.
Overall, you're a friendly drunk who's likely to buy a whole round for your friends... many times.
Sometimes you can be a bit boring when you drink. You may be prone to go on about topics no one cares about.

What's your beer personality?


I swiped this off of Paul's blog, Aurora Walking Vacation.  Fortunately, I didn't wind up with a Molson's personality.  If that had happened, I would have jumped off a bridge. 

And, since it's St. Patrick's Day, and since I found this on Rachael and Kimo's blog, I figured I'd slap it up here for all who wander in.


You're 70% Irish

You're very Irish, and most likely from Ireland.
(And if you're not, you should be!)

How Irish are you?

I hope you're all having a great St. Pat's Day.  Ummm...  Hoist a Guinness and try not to break anything!  And, if you are out tonight and you see me, please pick me up off the floor and put me back in my stool. 

See ya,


Thursday, March 16, 2006


    I think I've had enough of this winter thing.   I've not seen the sun in so long, I think I've got moss growing on the back of my neck.  However, the good news is that me and my mossy-green neck will fit right in with tomorrow's St. Patrick's Day parties (See?  I'm always looking on the bright side, ya know?).

    The thing is, I really wish we had a volcano to throw things into somewhere here in Wisconsin.  The gods are angry, and I really would like to be able to appease them.  I mean, I know someone's going to come up to me today and say, "this weather sucks."
    And, when that happens, I want to be able to say, "Don't blame me, man.  I went to the volcano and tossed in three chickens, a bull-moose and the last remaining virgin in the greater Milwaukee metropolitan area.  If the gods are still unhappy, it's probably because of something YOU did, you unwashed heathen." 
    Anyway, if you look closely into that great gray smudge, you may see me standing in the yard.  I'll be the naked guy with the red bucket on his head who's cackling like a lunatic and swatting snowflakes with a tennis racquet.  Should make for an interesting afternoon. 
See ya,

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Frustration of the Uninspired...

    Windless upon a once vast Sargasso of an infinite imagination.
     The horizon seems to shink with an encroaching storm whose angst-ridden mutinous murmurs of thoughts and notions seem undeserving of the words to place them upon this world. 
    Within my hold, a once precious cargo turns worthless, rotting into a meaningless black mass beneath the planks of an imovable deck now buckling beneath the blistering, dessicating sun. 
    No waves or wind to push. 
    Not a beat of a breath to catch the sails and nudge this battered boat closer to the harbor of its home. 
    Simply stuck in a mere tangle of weeds and time. 


    Sorry folks.  I know it's been kind of a slow-read for you all on this end.  Don't worry, I've not gotten too serious about things.  After all, I seem to think that being overly serious about life's minutia is the first step toward insanity.  
    On the other hand, I have been busy writing like a lunatic, so my mind may not be altogether in this particular time and place.  And, after gawking at and adding to a collection of words on a computer screen for 8 to 10 hours a day, the only thing I want to do is drool over some jello and play with a ball of yarn in the corner for a while.  In short, I need my blankey... 
    Unfortunately, my particular favorite blankey --a smothering, down-filled comforter-- sprung a little leak, and now my bedroom looks like "closing-time" at a Chinatown, back-alley, cock-fighting emporium.  It's a real mess.  But, I did enjoy the puzzled look on my cat's face when he saw the scattered feathers, and I'm hoping now that he doesn't think it's now okay to eat birds in the house.
See ya, 

Oh... The Perils of Celebrity.

    I have to admit, it's so much fun watching a foul-mouthed, self-important, arrogant Hollywood game show host descend into a childish, little bicker-fest with a 20-year old college kid named Kevin, who had the audacity to tell Joe Rogan he wasn't really a funny guy. 

Monday, March 13, 2006

Splash... splash... splash...

    It rained here last night.  Actually, that's kind of an understatement.  It friggin' poured here last night with no end of blistering flashes of lightning and window-rattling thunder.  Normally, I love lying in bed listening to the life-threatening weather.  I don't know why, but I always seem to sleep better when Mother Nature smacks us around a bit.  But, there's a price to pay for such blissful slumber.

    When I stepped into the basement to get to working this morning, I had to stop and wonder if I didn't actually wake up to find myself in a WWII submarine movie.  The only thing missing was a chain-smoking, grease-covered German named Dieter telling me that we are utterly screwed.  There were puddles and ponds everywhere, and the poor dehumidifier just sat wheezing and twitching like a terrified mouse that's been backed into a corner. 

     Oh well...  Today is apparently "Mop Day."  And, in my world, that's a sign that spring is just around the corner.  Yippee!

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Help me!!!

"I'm scared of God's judgment on man in this fallen world. most people forget about God"
--Comment from rayg257 - 3/10/06 8:22 PM

    Now, I don't know if y'all caught this comment in my "Things That Scare Me" entry, but for a while now today, I've been contemplating this statement.  It's puzzling.

     I simply don't understand why or how someone could fear something that, by its very definition is benevolent, and therefore, all good. 

     On top of that, I hardly think this world has "fallen."  In fact, I think in the overall arena of "sin," we're better off today than we were in the days when humanity burned supposed witches and heretics at the stake  --unless, of course, you think The Inquisition was actually a "good" thing.


Friday, March 10, 2006

The Big Out-There...

    Well, it's the weekend, and that can mean only one thing: John Scalzi has something for me to do.  And, so long as it doesn't involve, elephants, mops or Amish furniture, well by golly, I'm gonna do it! 
    In Assignment #102, John wants to know if we believe there is life in that really big "out-there" that we call "space."  Moreover, never one to settle for a simple yes or no answer, John also wants to know that if we do believe life is out-there, what kind of life do we think it is?  Gadzooks, man!  If only I could just say no...
    Anyway, of course I think life exists out there somewhere.  Take a look at the countless number of galaxies scattered across infinity, and in those countless galaxies are a countless number of suns with any number of countless rocks going whoosh around them.  When you consider that, it's kind of hard to think that life is unique to this particular rock. 
    So, what kind of life is out there, you ask? 
    I think all kinds of life could exist out there.  Who knows, right?  I mean, there could be some pretty wiggy plants, animals, and maybe even people of some sort.  After all, when you toss infinity into any equation of probability, just about anything is possible.  For all I know, there's probably a planet out there where the trees go around peeing on dogs and suicidal boulders reduce themselves to gravel by crawling up the side of a mountain and throwing themselves off over and over again.  And, don't even get me started on the concept of a self-tenderizing herd of cattle.
    I know what you're thinking:  "Dan?  That's just not possible."  But, the wacky thing with infinity is, everything is possible.  And, even though the odds may be greatly against it, there could very well be a collection of toothless, gray-skinned alien hicks huddled around a still on some inter-galactic planetary equivalent of Appalachia.  They're probably smashed-drunk on hooch right now and blasting their zappo-guns wildly toward the stars and squealing with delight.
    On the other hand, if you ask me about "intelligent" life?  Well...  That's a whole 'nother kettle o' fish.  I mean, all one needs to really do is look around to see that intelligent life is something of a universal rarity.  For example, anyone who needs to be reminded that a plastic bag is most certainly not a toy, is definitely not qualified to be a spokesperson for intelligent life. 
    So, there you have it.  That's my perception of the universe.  It's a really big place, ya know?  And, the notion that we are the only ones drifting through infinity is kind of depressing. 
    Anyway, John also has the ubiquitous extra-credit bit to his writing assignment.  He wants to know our favorite Science Fiction alien.  And, though I may not have a single particular favorite, I'd like to take this time to give a shout-out to Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems, "The Future Begins Tomorrow," and all those rockin' Red Lectroid homeboys from Planet Ten:
John Barnett               John Bigboote         John Camp              John Careful Walker
John Chief Crier         John Cooper           John Coyote            John Edwards
John Fish                   John Fledgling          John Gomez            John Grim
John Guardian            John Icicle Boy        John Jones              John Joseph
John Lee                    John Littlejohn         John Many Jars       John Milton
John Mud Head         John Nephew          John Nolan              John O'Connor
John Omar                 John Parrot             John Rajeesh           John Ready to Fly
John Repeat Dance    John Roberts           John Scott               John Smallberries
John Starbird             John Take Cover     John Thorny Stick   John Two Horns
John Whorfin             John Wood             John Wright             John Ya Ya
"No matter where you go, there you are." --Buckaroo Bonzai

Thursday, March 9, 2006

Hey, Joe Six-Pack...

Joe Wants a Six-Pack
    Well, it seems, in his blog, Magic Smoke, Journal Editor Joe is desperately looking for new and exciting blogs or journals to read (when his bosses aren't looking; unless, they put him up to this, and if that's the case, are you folks hiring over there at AOL, Joe?), and he's called out for people to come up with six journals or blogs for him to scour for delightful, bloggy goodiness.  
    Why?  Well...  I'm not sure.  However, I think after enough six-packs, I'm pretty certain he'll hand over the keys to his car and explain it all to us. 
    Anyway, Joe, here's your six-pack.  Cheers, mate!
  • http://www.dailyramblings.com/blog/:   This is a fellow midwesterner who's recently made the move from Minnesota to sunny Los Angeles in persuit of fortune, fame and eternal glory, but right now, he'll just settle for any ol' job.  Sometimes crude but always funny with a definite gift for finding the irony of life. 
  • Mrs. Linklater's Guide to the Universe:    Not only is she a very good writer, this delightful Mrs. L. has a HUGE collection of favorites to randomly pluck from time to to time in search of just about anything.  It reminds me of being a kid again and poking around my brother's collection of LP's (some people call them albums.  Philistines!).
  • Jenn's World:    What can I say about Jenn?   She's witty, acerbic, and flat-out hillarious.  Her observations of the world around her are written in such a brilliant, fast-paced style that, like life itself, if you blink, you may miss it. 
  • In The Shadow Of The Iris:    I found this one by a fluke recently, but after one quick read, it's clear that this journal contains much more than simple words upon a page.  Read this one, and you'll understand why writers write.       
  • Involuntary Motion:    Another one that's very new to me, but it's quickly become something of a real thrill to read. 
  • waiterrant.net:    Really?  Honestly?  All I can say is this is a blog from a waiter.  However, waiters definitely do have some pretty great stories to tell.  Personally, I think I'm the guy at Table 22.  Where are you sitting? 
    Well, that's your six-pack of picks.  Some are foreign, some are domestic, but I hope all are worth a taste.

Wednesday, March 8, 2006

Things That Scare Me (rather badly, in fact)


   Now, I got this idea from Dornbrau's Dust Bunny blog, in which she explained how she's working on conquering her fear of spiders.  So, I figured I'd ramble about those things out there that utterly terrify me.  If any therapists stumble across this, feel free to help me.  Lord knows I could really use it.

    Anyway, here are some of the things I'm afraid of:
  • Buicks:    When I am driving, and I come across one of these cars on the road, I know it's only a matter of time before I am being forced into a head-on collision with a speeding cement mixer.
  • A particular shade of the color green:    Quite frankly, your guess is as good as mine on this one.  I don't know what else to tell you.
  • The vacant space between Jessica Simpson's ears:    I'm open to the whole concept of the "Big Bang Theory," and I think that all matter in the universe is slowly being sucked into Miss Simpson's head where it will be reduced to a very small, infinitely dense point in space, only to explode into an infinitely large gaseous cloud of recycled cosmic matter.  
  • My toilet:    It shatters the Laws of Physics.  I live in the Northern Hemisphere, and correolis force dictates that the escaping water should turn in a clockwise direction; however, mine spins counter-clockwise.  I'm not certain, but my current theory is that it has something to do with Jessica Simpson's head, and its proximity to my potty.
  • Vegans, Vegetarians, & people who only use their molars when eating:    Sometimes these folks will stop gazing at their crystals long enough to look at me as though I've been roasted on a spit and smothered with a cherry-orange glaze.  It makes me uncomfortable. 
  • The phrase, Honey? I would like a set of steak knives for Christmas.:    That should be self-explanatory; particularly if it's coming from the mouth of someone who relies solely upon his or her molars in which to chew (see above).
  • Lifetime Guarantees:    They never tell you whether or not it's the life of the product you buy, or YOUR life.  Ergo, what's keeping the makers of said product from coming to your house and killing you?  Why do you think they make you fill out those damn warranty cards?  They need your address.
  • Rednecks who don't collect beer cans:    The way I see it, if you're not collecting beer cans, you're probably too sober and you have too much time on your hands, and you are therefore most-likely constructing a small, thermonuclear device in your basement.  
  • People with Mullets:    These poor bastards are slowly being sucked into an inescapable vortex of time and space, and the last thing I want is to get close enough for them to get a hand on me and yank me into the swirling, atom-crushing abyss that is Jessica Simpson's head. 
    There you have it.  Those are my fears.  Sure, I have many more, but these are the biggies, ya know? 

Oh my God! I'm Going to Die Today!

    I knew it is was only a matter of time.  I shouldn't have looked, but it was something like a traffic accident.  I couldn't help but take a quick peek when I saw the link while probing the news this morning.  And, even though I didn't want to know what the link contained, I clicked on the following:
    From there, seeing as how I was inevitably caught up in the spirit of this wiggy, Pagan voodoo, I entered my birthday and received the following horoscope:
    "The pace of life could slow down a bit for you today, giving you time to integrate what has recently happened. You may need to reconsider your goals or even change your position on a professional matter. If something totally unexpected is tossed at you, do your best to catch it in stride. Mind your own business; any extra concern that you put toward someone else's problem might only make it worse."
    The notion of my life's pace slowing down any more than it already is can mean only one thing:  I will die today.  And, this is further supported by the idea that I may actually have to reconsider my goals.  In short, my horoscope is telling me, "Hey Dan?  Don't make any long-term plans, quit working, be happy, take it in stride and don't be surprised that you're going to croak today, okay?"
    On top of that, don't come to me with any problems.  I'll just say something like, "What?  You think YOU have troubles?  Ha!  I'm the one who's going to die, and I've got a lot of things to do before that happens! (which, mind you, will inevitably increase the pace of my life while I try and prepare for the unavoidable big, slow-down that's lurking on the horizon)."
    Now, don't worry.  You see, I also checked my horoscope for Thursday, and I was told the following:
    "You may be on an upward ridenow, even if you are carrying feelings from very obscure places within your mind. You can, however, transform the terror associated with imagined creatures lurking in the shadows simply by shining the light of awareness into the darkness. Overcome your fears by fully experiencing your emotions."
    Of course, the key words there are "upward ride," so, if I actually somehow manage to not screw up being dead, at least I know where I'm headed, eh?  But, it's clear I am going to show up with a LOT of baggage, so I'd better bring a sandwich to nibble on while God and I sort all this stuff out.
    On the other hand, there's a pretty good chance that my horoscope was written by an elderly woman in Iowa who probably smokes Pall-Malls and drinks a considerable amount of malt-liquor, and rather than miss her deadline, she decided to kill me.  Thanks a lot, lady. 
See ya,

Tuesday, March 7, 2006

Going Postal Again...

    Well, since today was actually fairly busy with book-related things, I haven't had much time to spend updating my crazy blog.  But, don't worry, reader.  I am still on this side of the grass, and everything is slick and shiny. 
    Anyway, since it's getting somewhat late, and since I really am a lazy bastard, I think it's time to answer some comments and a few interrogating emails I've received.  Hey!  It's always fun.  I love the questions and comments, ya know? 
    First, Natalie from Interface wants to know: 
    Dear Poem, uh..what does the d stand for? 
    --Comment from lurkynat"
    Well, Natalie, the "D" stands for Dan (although, I know a few people who seem to think it stands for "dumbass").  I know.  I wish it was something exotic and foreign like "Dimitry" so everyone could say "HA!  I knew he was a bloody Communist!  Die you pinko bastard!"  But, it's just Dan. 
    Now, I keep the emails anonymous because I figure if you wanted everyone to know who you were, you'd have posted in the comments section at the end of an entry.  But, if you do email me and want me to use your name in a possible future post, just put "say my name biotch!" or something similar somewhere in the subject or text. 
    Anyway, Anonymous Emailer wants to know:
    "Dude.  Are you [gay]?  You hate women and love men, don't you?  hahaha..."
    Wrong.  I'm not gay.  I like women, and absolutely can't stand men.  I don't know how women put up with us.  Honestly.  We are dumb creatures, and I think our only purpose in a woman's life is for protection.  And, by protection, I mean "take a bullet for them."  Why else would a woman pull from the fridge a hunk of something green and furry and say, "Eat this, honey, and tell me if it's bad." 
    The Delightful Mrs. L. (whose blog Mrs. Linklater's Guide to the Universe is certainly worth checking out) wants to know: 
    "How about a fried cheese eating contest? You can eat, can't you?  Mrs. L
     --Comment from
    Well, so long as I'm not using tricky things like forks, knives or spoons, I can eat perfectly fine (think finger foods like eggrolls and jello-shots).  As for a contest?  Well...  You don't want to go there.  I can eat a hunk of cheese the size of a Volvo if I have to.  Batter and deep-fry it, and you wouldn't stand a chance. 
    Another Anonymous Emailer asks: 
   "do u have a gf????"
    (Doesn't that just drip no-end of cloying Hello-Kitty-esque sweetness.  It's like an instant toothache).
    No.  I don't have a girlfriend.  Do you want the job?  And, trust me.  It IS a job.  In fact, you'd probably be better off shaving your head and joining a cult in Belgium that worships turnips. 
     Well, folks, that's all I have time for. 

Say It Ain't So...

     It's the end of the world.  I know it is.  There's something tremendously askew with the universe when I wake up in the morning and check my mail and find this:

AOL News - Yanni Arrested in Florida in Alleged Domestic Dispute

     Indeed, friends.  These are certainly dark times.  What's next?  Will John Tesh rob a bank? 


Monday, March 6, 2006

Just Clearing Up Stuff...

    It seems I need to clear up a few things.  First, I do not hate my cat.  I love my cat, so stop sending me emails on how to kill the poor animal.  As I said, my cat and I have an understanding.
    Also, more importantly, I do not hate any of my ex-girlfriends.  So again, stop sending me emails on how to do away with any of them (there are laws against that sort of thing, ya know?).  After all, even the ones who are out to kill me are good for a laugh from time to time. 
    Anyway, seeing as how today my brain once again feels like a rusty lawn chair, and I'm feeling about as creative as the color beige, let me share with you yet another peek into my tortured love-life, okay? 
    Sometime ago, my now-ex-girlfriend and I were driving home from dinner (actually, she was driving.  I just feel safer when her hands are on the steering wheel where I can see them).  And, I was sitting in the passenger seat busying myself with gawking out the window and trying not to do that thing with my mouth where words come out and she goes crazy.  Some people call it talking, but she sees it as a deliberate attempt on my part to drive her into a homicidal rage.
    "Do you hear that noise?"  She asks as we're tooling down the expressway at a reasonably safe speed. 
    "What noise?"  I ask, the sound of her voice pulling my attention away from a brief meditation on whether or not a beer can I saw on the side of the road was full or empty.
    "Whenever I turn a corner," she says, "my car makes this 'clunk' in the front." 
    Now, insofar as I really wanted to explain to her that there seems to be a sheer lack of corners on the expressway, and thus, there's no way I could have heard any noise, my only response was to say, "it's probably a tie-rod, a ball-joint, or the little old lady you ran down who is now tangled around your drive train rapping on your under-carriage begging for you to stop." 
    "Shut up," she said.  "I know nothing about cars." 
    I don't know how it happened, but I suddenly found myself dealing with a growing concern for her safety at this point, and I asked her, "Do you at least know how to change a tire?"
    "God no," she replied.  "Why would I know that?  I've never had a flat." 
    "So, what hapens when you do get a flat?"
    "I don't know," she said wth a shrug.  "I'd probably call you."
    "What if I'm not able to?" I ask. 
    "That's stupid.  Why wouldn't you be able to?" she asked.  "Don't you love me?  Are you sleeping with someone else?" 
    Do you see my mistake, there?  She doesn't consider the possibility that I may be in traction and reduced to drooling into a cup because I did that thing with my mouth again which lead to her beating me into a boneless, quivering mess.  Nope.  She goes for the closest, most-irrational option available.
    I swear, I could be long dead and buried in the ground, and this woman would stand above my grave and say something like "why didn't you send me a birthday card this year, you selfish prick?" 
See ya,

Sunday, March 5, 2006

For the Animal Lovers Out There

    Now, since I posted the picture of my cat freezing in the snow, I've been getting a lot of email about it.  Apparently, there are some concerned animal owners out there who feel I am a horrible pet owner and are saying things like,  "People like you shouldn't have pets!  You shouldn't leave it outside to freeze to death!  He looks soooooo unhappy.  DIE you miserable bastard! DIE DIE DIE!!!" 
    Here's the thing:  My cat and I have an understanding.  I use my opposable thumbs to operate things like cat-food cans and door knobs, and my cat, in turn, agrees not to kill me in my sleep.  It goes something like this:
    Cat wakes up, and cat wants to go outside.  He lets me knowing this by sitting in front of the door and staring at it while making an odd sort of grunting noise that sounds a lot like an arthritic old man trying to wrestle himself from the clutches of his favorite recliner. 
    When this doesn't work (usually when I'm not in the room because I'm off doing other things like sleeping), cat will then grumble his way into the kitchen and, in order to to punish me for my neglect, cat will knock over his water dish and grumble his way back to stare at the door.  He doesn't "meow" like normal cats tend to do.  Nope, why should a guy like me have normal pets?  My cat makes this weird combination of barks and glottal clicks, and for a moment, I question whether he is, in fact, a cat, and not a small, furry, arthritic, Kalahari tribesman that I'd somehow mistakenly adopted during a drunken night spent watching infomercials.
    Anyway, when the water trick doesn't get my attention, cat will then empty his dish of kibble into the puddle, and, of course, grumble his way back to the door.  Grumble..  grumble..  bark.
    Finally, cat realizes that I am neither in the room he's in, nor am I in the kitchen contemplating my punishment and learning some sort of valuable lesson about animal neglect.  Cat then decides to grumble, bark and whine his way through the house in search of me.   
    Now, let's say I'm doing something completely selfish, shallow and unimportant like sleeping, shall we?  Cat will sit and bark outside my bedroom door (I leave the door ajar because if I closed it completely, there's a pretty good chance that cat would claw his way through it anyway, find me sleeping and descend upon me in a murderous rampage.  So, to save me a trip to the Emergency Room and the hassle of getting a new door, I leave it open a little).
    This can only go one of two ways:  1) I hear cat, and I get out of bed and stumble my way downstairs, through the kitchen (making sure to step in the puddle of cold, wet kibble.  Of course, I'm not wearing slippers because, long ago, in retribution for a trip to the vet, cat decided that the luxury of household footwear is something I should never again experience), and I then open the door and he bounds excitedly into the sweet embrace of freedom.  OR:
    2) I hear cat, and stay in bed silently praying for the type of divine mercy that only comes from a sudden onset of feline narcolepsy.  Please cat!  Sleep Cat!  God, don't kill me! 
    Unfortunately, my prayers are never answered, and the door is flung open with all the subtlety of a SWAT team working its way into a crack house. 
    "BAM!" the door smashes into the wall, and I hear plaster and wood shatter, and I think for a moment that the house will come crashing down on top of me.  But no.  The house remains, and from the doorway, I hear cat's distinct sounds of barking and grumbling: "Brrraap brraap mrrrr?" (yeah.  It has the inflection of a question.  Weird, I know). 
    Now, on the odd chance that this wouldn't get me out of bed (say I'm in bed with the flu or a touch of Ebola virus), can will then jump up on the bed, seek out my hand, and gnaw (not bite) on my fingers until they are a wet, slobber-coated mess. 
    If that doesn't wake me up, I'm either dead, or somehow, in my still sleeping mind, attempting to teach cat who is actually in charge here.  This is bad because cat has very large (freakishly large, actually) front paws.  They're about the same diameter as the concave bottom of a soda can.  And in those massive mitts are conveniently tucked a collection of very sharp claws designed for one thing: slitting the throat of the sleeping bastard who will not let cat outside. 
    Tired of my insolence and neglect, cat will nudge my sleeping body until I am flat on my back.  Then, cat will climb upon my chest, sit there, and place a single one of his paws gently on my forehead.  Then, he will slowly extend his claws into my forehead, and when the pain of this becomes to great to ignore, I have no choice but to get out of bed, trundle downstairs, stagger through the kitchen (yes, through the cat food also), and open the door to let him out. 
    Of course, either decision will find me wide awake after freeing cat from his prison.  So, I stay awake, make coffee, open the shades and find cat sitting at the window begging to be let in after five minutes of letting him out.  And yes!  I let him in so you animal lovers out there can stop praying for my early death.  Then, cat comes in, eats, climbs into his favorite chair and goes to sleep for several hours before repeating the whole series of events all over again. 

Death & Bowling!

     I'm well-aware that there is a litany of things in this world which I should never attempt.  For example, from childhood, I've always been told that it's usually in my best interest not to grab a fork and jab wildly at the charred remains of an English muffin that my evil toaster has decided to murder for no apparent reason whatsoever. 

    Does that stop me? No.  Why?  Because I'm an idiot.  This should be clear to you all by now.  I can barely operate a garden hose without the threat of self-strangulation hovering over me.  Trust me.  The simple fact that I can tie my shoes without drooling and falling over into a spastic, chattering mess is the only thing keeping me from being institutionalized. 

     It's the little things that make me proud. 

     Anyway, with that in mind, let's go bowling.  Yes!  I know.  Bowling! 

     Where I live, you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a bowling alley.  You'd think it'd be in my genetic make-up to be a fairly good bowler, wouldn't you?  After all, how hard can it be?  It's nothing more than rolling a ball down an alley and knocking things over, and I am really good at knocking things over.  I do that several times a day.   Heck!  Any moron could do this bowling thing.

      So, I put on my shoes (without falling down, and I'm proud of life's little accomplishments), and I go search the racks for a ball.  I pick a flat-black ball that doesn't weigh a heck of a lot because I don't want to kill anyone should it go flinging out of my hand into the crowd that has gathered to watch the "special person" bowl. 

      My first shot was a strike, and I'm thinking, See, moron? This really is easy.

      Chuck, my "friend" who dragged me into this place said, "See?  Ya' ringer, it's like riding a bike!" 

      Obviously, Chuck didn't know that, not only do I have issues with toasters, shoes and garden-hoses, bikes are also on that list of man-made devices which will possibly lead to my eventual demise.  In fact, in my world, the only thing more dangerous than bikes are stationary bikes.  Put me on one of those, and it's only a matter of time before a tanker-truck full of gas comes crashing through the living room wall and I explode in a horrible, fiery accident.  But, I digress... This is about bowling.

       After my first strike, I was feeling pretty proud of myself.  Granted, I'm not like some scruffy twit standing on the bow of the Titanic bellowing "I'm king of the world!"  No.  I'm more humble than that.  I was just looking at the unfortunate folks bowling against me, and I was thinking I so totally own you!  Ha!

     Do you, remember that whole bike thing?  Yeah.  The wheels fell off, and I found myself flung ass over tea-kettle into an episode that involved a very dumb, clumsy man (me) and enough gutters to rebuild the Roman Aquaduct.  I sucked, and I sucked bad. 

     The end result was my putting up the massive score of 43.  I know what you're thinking.  "43!?!  A dead person could bowl at least a 90.  My friggin' goldfish is better than you.  You really are a moron.  Sheesh.  43?!?  How do you live with yourself?" 

      It's not easy. 

      The good news is that I know I am not a bowler, and I will probably never be a bowler.  And, more importantly, no one was injured, and I trundled off with the tattered remains of my manhood and an aching desire to take up something easier like golf.  How tough can golf be?  It's a ball, a club and a hole.  Any moron could play that game. 



Saturday, March 4, 2006

Paranoid?!?! HA!

    Now, I've had a fair-share of girlfriends throughout my years on this planet.  Some have been quite pleasant, and others have given me the chilling feeling that usually comes with the realization that this person is simply one bad day away from squawking with primal delight as she chases a terrified rodent into the woods in persuit of a hot lunch. 
    The thing is, somewhere in the subtle wiring which comprises my personality make-up, when the relationship ends, and with no regard to my own personal well-being, I always find myself muttering with solemn resignation the words "we're still friends, right?"  It's usually at this point that my brain rattles itself into a complete neural shut down like an old car digesting a tank full of bad gas. 
    One day, not too long ago, one such former girlfriend called, and I began to question my instinctive desire for self-preservation.  Here's how it went:
    "Hello?" I answered.
    "Hey." She said.
    "Hey?" I asked, my voice carrying a friendly sort of excitement and wonder.
    "You sound angry," she said.
    "I'm not angry at all."
    Then, my brain struggled itself back to life, gasped the the words be angry, dammit!  Then, it sputtered and once again convulsed itself to sleep. "It's good to hear from you."
    "Are you sure?"  She asked.  "Is this a bad time?"
    "Not a bad time," I responded, ignoring the potential exit strategy openeing before me.  "What's up?"
    "Do you remember that bookcase your mother bought us?" She asked.  "The one from Ikea?"
    Of course I remembered it.  It's the collection of Swedish lumber that came in the deceptively small box which took me thebetter part of two weeks to figure out how to assemble with only a small wrench and my masculine pride.
    "Yeah?"  I asked --wondering if she'd lit it on fire in an attempt to cast some sort of gypsy curse upon me and my family. 
    "I need help moving it," she answered.  "Are you free today?"
    Now, I should have said no.  I should have lied and told her that I was getting my teeth pulled or that a Bible-sized plague of locusts had gathered upon my lawn, and I would be spraying all afternoon.  But did I?  Of course not.  I said that I'd be over in a jiffy, put on my cap and coat, and hit the road toward a questionable future. 
    When I arrived, she was in the kitchen.  Moreover, she was in the kitchen doing dishes.  This was a stunning thing for me to witness, and I found myself wishing I'd had a camera so as to have a permanent record of this incredibly rare moment in mankind's existence.  After all, when we were together, I think her idea of this "kitchen place" was a magical room I'd simply enter and return from bearing sustenance, and her idea of a dirty dish was simply a blood-coated, eight-inch chef's knife that she absent-mindedly forgot to toss in the river on her way home after a bad day at work. 
    "Hi," she said. "It's upstairs in the den.  I figure we could just tip it on its side, and we could slide it down the stairs, and we could put it in the living room."
    It should be noted at this point that her definition of "we" varies greatly from my definition of "we."  In my world, "we" means she and I doing something together.   
    However, in her world, "we" usually means me doing something completely alone while she stands behind me chiming randomly, "Are you okay?  Do you need help?  What was that cracking sound?  Do you want me to call an ambulance?" 
    So, like a mule, I embraced my solitary purpose and trundled up the stairs to the den to find the cumbersome, Swedish-excuse for a bookcase un-emptied and containing the following inventory on its shelves:
    1 half finished bag of Dorritos
    3 DVDs (which is odd because her DVD player is in the living room)
    1 ashtray full of buttons of various sizes and colors.
    1 pair of pink flip-flops
    2  brass, reclining Buddah bookends holding between them:
    1 book.
    Anyway, I emptied the shelves, put the everything on either the desk or the floor, and tipped the awkward hunk of furniture on its side, and proceeded to slide it out of the room --my efforts were made much easier by the carpeted floor.  Hey, I thought.  This is going to be a cakewalk!And, as I reached the top of the stairs, I heard her call from the kitchen, "I'll be there in a second."
    "Don't worry about it." I said.  "I think I can handle it." 
    Somewhere in the center of my higher-reasoning, a flicker, a sputter and a gasp of warning escaped, but it was silenced by the notion that I could finish this task and return to the saftey of my world rather quickly. 
    So, I managed to yank and tug this thing to the top of the stairs where it teetered precariously, and I looked behind me to check my footing (trust me, I've learned to watch my back in this sort of situation, and today, it is clear, was no exception). 
    Anyway, with my shoulder doing what it could to prevent gravity from breaking the inertia on this bookcase, and thus sending the two of us careering down in a tangle of broken bones and shattered Swedish lumber, I turned and saw that she had placed a tray, a roller, and an open can of bright yellow paint about midway up the flight of stairs.
    "Hey," I shouted. "What's with the paint?"
    Now, any rational person probably would have said "oops," or "I'm sorry about that," or "I was hoping you wouldn't notice that.  I wanted to kneel before your mangled, broken body and squeal with glee to the sky as you sucked in your last breath." 
    However, from the kitchen, what I heard was the following: "I'm thinking about getting a cat."
    For a moment, my mind spun into a tortured, barren abyss where all logical thought was absolutely impossible.  Cat?  Yellow paint?  Mangled me?  Gwaaaah...  It hurts...  it...  hurts.... 
    Some things are simply not meant to be understood.
    Anyway, I nudged the bookcase into a more secure spot, removed the hazards from the stairs, and resumed my once simple task which was now turning into some bizarre version of a heroic, Greek epic.
    After clearing away the things which would have made my death look like an accident, the rest of the chore went rather smoothly.  And, once the bookcase was standing tall in the living room, I wiped the sweat from my brow, issued a triumphant, manly sigh, and stepped into the kitchen to see her sitting at the table, drinking a cup of coffee and reading the newspaper.  She then looked up and asked, "do you need my help now?" 
    "It's in the living room already," I said.
    "It is?"  She said with surprise.  "Let me see."
    At this point, I said I had to go, and I put on my cap and coat and escaped before the inevitable, unavoidable,"I wanted it on this wall.  Why didn't you put it against this wall?  Do you think it looks better on that wall?  You're an idiot!  Idiot!  You are such an idiot."
    Oh well... 
See ya,

Friday, March 3, 2006

hi a/s/l

     We've all gotten them, haven't we?  The second we sit down and hop online, we are greeted with a barrage of instant messages with an incessant little "bling."

     Yesterday, I made the unfortunate mistake of turning off my "filter" which says that only those people I want to talk to are able to reach me.  Even worse, I unknowingly turned it off in the afternoon when school usually lets out.  Zounds!  The whole event was brutal. 


IM Sender: hi a/s/l

Me:  98/ What's sex? / I think I'm in the home my children put me in so they could forget about me?  Are you my grandson?  Can I have some pudding? 

They seem to leave me alone after that sort of thing.  Unfortunately, another bored child comes out of the blue and the barrage continues:


IM Sender:  who r u

Me:  I'm Batman! 

IM Sender: huh

Me:  Is there a problem citizen?  Do you need Batman?

IM Sender: huh

Me:  Curse you Riddler!  You poor, sick, deluded child.  Batman is too late.

     I won't bore you with the rest of the conversation.  It just always seems to go downhill from there.  And then another one pops up:


IM Sender:  Hi there.  My name's Jessica and my friend and I just got a webcam.  Check us out!

Me:  Do you like Malt-o-Meal?

     Yeah...  I know those sorts of IM's are just a "one-shot" deal, and I never expect, or even want, a response.  Still...  The thought of "Jessica" out there somewhere contemplating a bowl of Malt-o-Meal makes me giggle.

     Other than that, I seem to get a ton of IM's looking for homework help for some bizarre reason. 


IM Sender:  HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Me:  Cut the red wire!  No, WAIT.  Is there a yellow wire? 

IM Sender: wut???????????????

Me: Is there a yellow wire dammit!  Cut the yellow wire!   

IM Sendercan u help me??????????

MeIs there a green wire?

IM Sender4get u bye

     I know.  I feel horrible for torturing these kids.  

See ya, 


Thursday, March 2, 2006

Yay! Another Assignment...

     Well, he's at it again, folks.  John Scalzi has given any and all takers the assignment of naming a talent that we don't have that we wish we did have.  I'm kind of new to this sort of thing, but I had a good time with the Future stuff, so I figure I can give this one a go. 


      Now, insofar as it'd be pretty cool to be able to lick my own ears, I think the one talent I would most like to have would have to be pastry.  I wish I could make pastry.  I mean, a guy could make a lot of friends with a simple batch of chocolate eclairs. 


      Moreover, with some mad pastry skills, I could show up at a woman's house on a date, and instead of handing over a bunch of flowers which would die anyway, I can hand her a sack of cream-puffs that are guaranteed to pack on more than enough pounds to easily last a heck of a lot longer than any old bunch of flowers.  Needless to say, she'd definitely remember me for a very long time.

     Also, consider the speeding tickets I could get out of by simply, slyly handing the offended officer a dozen danish or two.  Oh yes...  I would be above the law with this talent, and it's clear the world would be mine...  mine...  mine..   hahahaaaa!!!!


     Now, as for the extra-credit portion of the gig, John wants to know a completely useless talent I possess, and though I probably shouldn't tell you this, I can pick up things, pinch people wickedly hard, and break pencils with my toes. 

Is there any wonder why a monkey like me would turn to a life of pastry?

See ya,


Has This Country Gone Nuts?

Well...  It seems that the "Don" of Domino's Pizza, Thomas S. Monaghan, has decided to establish a town called Ave Maria with a welcome sign that essentially reads: "Catholics Only." 

AOL News - Pizza Magnate Seeks Catholic-Governed Town

Kevin Bacon?  We're calling you out!  Put on your Footloose sneakers and get thee to Florida.

So, what are the supposed perks of the town?  Well, aside from unlimited bingo, there'll be no place to buy birth control or pornography --in other words, there will be no 7-11's in the town of Ave Maria.  And, there will be no x-rated movies shown on cable TV (yeah, right!).  No porn in Florida?  Good luck with that, okay? 

What will this quaint, little village look like?  Well, here's a description:

"The town and the university . . . . will be set on 5,000 acres with a European-inspired town center, a massive church and what planners call the largest crucifix in the nation, at nearly 65 feet tall. Monaghan envisions 11,000 homes and 20,000 residents."

Now, I wonder what "European-inspired town center" they're modeling it after:  Rome?  Or could it possibly be the friendly, tolerant town of Munster, Germany where they had an odd habit of torturing people and leaving their bodies to rot in cages as they dangle from the church spires?  

And a 65 foot tall crucifix?!?  What the....?  WHY? 

Sometimes, I just have to shake my head.  But, hey!  Why should I worry?  "Jeb Bush lauds it as a place where faith and freedom can thrive"

I mean, who better to ask about freedom than a member of the Bush family, right? 


Egads!  Now, I'm not going to whine too much, nor am I going to give you the gruesome details that comes from being betrayed by a burrito supreme with more fight than a short-changed Tijuana prostitute.  However, I will tell you that I have exactly 328 tiles on the floor of my bathroom, and the instructions on the back of a box of dental floss can lead one into no end of existential meditations. 

Of course, I blame Mexico for this.  You brought your tasty culinary delights into this country and expected us to actually cook it in a way that wouldn't kill us.  Don't take it personally.  I also blame Guatemala for a brush with death involving a roasted-goat and some deep-fried yucca.  And, not to be anti-south-o-the-border, I also have some angst for China as a result of the time I almost bled to death while assembling a bike stand (For future reference China, I do not have the delicate fingers of a seamstress).  

Oh well... I s'pose it's time to go peruse the directions on the shampoo bottle before I send my resume to the United Nations.   




Wednesday, March 1, 2006

Oy Vey!

In plugging around on the so-called “Blogosphere,” I stumbled upon Plittle’s journal, Aurora Walking Vacation, and a great, well-written entry titled “A Plea.” 


In it, he discussed how the Christian Right is, for lack of a better word, contributing to the number of cases of cervical cancer in this country by prohibiting the innoculation of our children against a Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) known as Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).  It's definitely worth taking a look at.


Call me crazy, but I think it's horribly wrong to condemn our future generations to a possible, painful death based solely upon the irrelevant squawking of proselytizing pseudo-Christian ninnies.  What do you think?


Now, the entry itself is a very articulate piece on just one of the myriad of hazards in allowing a specific religious belief to interfere with the health and safety of the overall population (after all, it's painfully clear that very few people grasp the concept that not onlydo our First Amendment rights grant us freedom of religion, it also grants us freedom FROM religion). 

Throughout history, the conflict between science and religion has been a prime example of the collision of the proverbial unstoppable-force and the immovable-object.   And, now there is a way to prevent a specific form of cancer which could benefit humanity, and Christians are getting in the way simply because it carries with it the stigma of a sexually transmitted disease, and they apparently know what God thinks about sex.  Even crazier, their skewed logic is stating that if we innoculate our children against this virus, we are somehow encouraging them to have sex.  It's infuriating to see how the twisted beliefs of this irrelevant religion (and yes!  In terms of government legislation, ALL religious beliefs are irrelevant) is still striving to control the lives and beliefs of not just a few followers, but the entire friggin' nation. 

Now, don't get me wrong, I do respect ALL religious beliefs, and I favor none over the other.  However, as an American, when I see those beliefs seeking to trample upon the rights of others in persuit of a Theocracy, I see that sort of thing as treasonous and utterly wrong.  Where do Christians get this notion that they are somehowmore "important" than any other religion in this country?   Are they under the impression that numbers somehow matter in this case? 

Moreover, if this country is ever going to succeed and survive, Conservative Christians desperately need to learn that they are not the sole religion in this country, and they need to learn to respect the beliefs and lives of others.  After all, so long as there is a single individual within this country's boarders who believes differently from Christian dogma, then that person's First Amendment Rights deserve to be respected.  Otherwise, we're right back in the same old mess this country's very first settlers sought to escape. 

Enough for now,


I Guess We Really Are Stupid.


     I saw this story on the news today, and it made me gape at my television like a stunned fish.

     "Characters From 'The Simpsons' More Well Known to Americans Than Their First Amendment Freedoms, Survey Finds"


      Now, I'm not saying that people should know every single tidbit contained in the Bill of Rights, but let's use a little common sense, folks!  Take a look at some of the following excerpts from the article:

     "Ironically, more than one-third of Americans (38 percent) incorrectly believe that the right against self-incrimination at trial -- commonly called "taking the 5th Amendment" because that is its source -- is a right granted by the First Amendment."

      Okay.  I s'pose that's not tremendously bad, is it?  I mean, when I say that I plead the Fifth, what I really mean is...  umm...  well... Oh, forget it! 

       There's much more too:

     "About one in five Americans (21 percent) agreed that the First Amendment granted them the right to own and raise pets, something that isn't discussed anywhere in the U.S. Constitution or Bill of Rights."

      Yeah.  That makes sense.  Somewhere?  

      And now, my personal favorite (you'll love this one):

     "One in five also believe that the right to drive is guaranteed by the First Amendment, although the car was not invented for another 100 years."

     ONE in FIVE?!?!  Jeeze!  Just how bad IS the crack problem in this country if twenty-one percent of Americans think this way? 

     On the other hand, in defense of my fellow Americans, I agree with John Scalzi when he says, "However, perhaps people aren't really to blame: The Bill of Rights isn't on TV twice a day, like The Simpsons is."

     But still, the "Right to Drive?!?" 

     Oh well, this sort of thing has me counting all the Canadian currency that's mistakenly found its way into my pockets over the years, learn the metric system, and take off to the "Great White North."  I'm not sure, but I think I also have the "Right to Drive" up there, don't I? 

See ya,