Sunday, September 30, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] How Lucky Am I?


Seriously?

When you boil it all down, and all is said and done, as cliché as it sounds, the records won't really matter all that much. I think what matters most is that people will most likely look back one day and say "God damn! It was so much fun watching Brett Favre play football."

As a Packers' fan, I've been through a lot of wins and a lot of losses, and though I've come away from many of those games with my fists clenched in frustration and an overwhelming desire to drink myself into stupidity (or, more stupidity that I currently possess), one thing remains true: there was always something in every game that I could look at and just say "I can't believe Favre actually did that? I didn't think a human being could do that."

For example, when was the last time you saw an NFL quarterback (or anyone) stiff-arm a guy so solidly that he broke the poor man's leg? For that, Dan Morgan will always be yet another fond memory in the hearts of Green Bay fans.

Oh. And that whole throwing a ball fifty-plus yards with both feet off the ground while falling
backwards?

Yeah. He's done that too. Favre just doesn't seem to have any respect whatsoever about the laws of Newton or whatever defense he faces.

Of course, there is a price to pay for such maniacal, reckless improvisation, I suppose. And, just as he is two touchdowns ahead of Dan Marino in the record books, he's also two interceptions behind George Blanda. It's a rather dubious honor to hold, but still...

Brett Favre is just damn fun to watch play the game of football, and, since 1992, I think all Packers' fans are lucky to have had this opportunity to watch a guy who has never failed to remind everyone that football is, in fact, a game. And, it's a fun game.

So, congratulations Brett. And, thank you for making me shake my head, clench my fists and just make me laugh at the madness that is your complete disregard to a common-sense approach to the game of football.

As an aside, back in 1994, I had the terrible misfortune of drinking shots with Brett Favre and whatever punter the Packers had at that time in a Panama City, FL bar. I say terrible because he was dragged back to his hotel room to sleep it off, and I wound up floating around in the Gulf of Mexico for several hours like a corpse to drag myself out of the surf looking like a hungover prune. So, be it a broken leg or a near fatal hangover, when Brett Favre has fun, if you're within a hundred miles of the guy, you're going to know it.

Glad he grew up to be the person he is, though.

As for me, well... The jury's still out on that one.

-DP


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/30/2007 05:42:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Ouch!

I'm not writing today since, you know, the hands are in a hell of a lot of pain, and concentrating on anything other than this constant ouch is damn near impossible. So, in light of that, I'm sorry, but you're just going to have to wait a day for the Annual End of the Month pile of links that I would normally slap up here.

If you would like, however, please feel free to share some links to some of your favorite things if you wish. Plug your own blogs. Is there anything out there that you think I would like to see other than my usual Amish-pirate porn?

The good news is that my Badgers won yesterday! Yay! Plus, the Packers are playing in the ridiculous, inflatable Metronome Metrodome today, and I've got a fridge full of beer (Guinness, Heineken, and Sleeman's). So, you know, it's not like I'm going to be suffering too much for any length of time. And, I don't want to hear anyone tell me that I should eat something too. That's what the Guinness is for. It's like a liquid meatloaf.

So... Enjoy your Sundays. I hope you all had a wild and wicked weekend with all sorts of madness and debauchery.

Take care, and I'll see you tomorrow.

-Dan

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/30/2007 10:08:00 AM

Friday, September 28, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Whoopsie...

Now, there have been a whole boatload of screw-ups in the history of sports and sports reporting. However, in that long and infamous history, I think none compares to this:


Now, that's really, really bad...

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/28/2007 08:23:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] A Little Help For You...

Now, with all the strife and trouble going on in what is now called Myanmar, I felt it necessary to point out that those who call this nation Myanmar are those who support the current ruling junta. However, those who don't support or recognize the legitimacy of the ruling junta still refer to the nation as Burma (granted, as is always the case, it is considerably more complicated than that, but this might help the confusion in geographic nomenclature).

Why am I explaining this?

Because, not one single news source I've seen all week has explained this, and it's been driving me a little batty. They are using the names interchangeably, and it's a bit baffling. Technically, it should be referred to as Myanmar since the junta is ruling the nation, but the people getting gunned down are dying for Burma.

Plus, a friend asked me earlier to explain my feelings on what is going on in Myanmar, and when I referred to it as Burma, she thought I was talking about a whole other country on an entirely different part of the globe. And, since she is generally a bright person, I figured there's a pretty good chance that she's not the only one out there with this sort of confusion.

Hope that helps.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/28/2007 12:15:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] So That's How It Gets Done...

This is both incredibly tragic and embarrassingly comical at the same time.


It looks like a group of excited Kindergarteners just running around wildly pushing buttons. And, if this is how politics are being run at the state level, I can't imagine the shady silliness going on in the "Big Show" of Capitol Hill legislation.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/28/2007 11:17:00 AM

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Noooooooo.....

A while back, someone asked me if I would rather be blind or deaf. I chose deafness; however, in light of the following, I may have to change that:
The Fonz in bronze? Group hopes that's correctamundo, wants to put statue downtown

By TOM DAYKIN
tdaykin@journalsentinel.com
Posted: Sept. 25, 2007

Aaay, Milwaukee.

"The Fonz" soon might be part of our downtown landscape, immortalized in a life-size bronze sculpture that city tourism leaders hope would be a stopping point for visitors.

The Fonz, of course, is Arthur "Fonzie" Fonzarelli, the character from the long-running TV show "Happy Days," set in a nostalgic version of Milwaukee, circa the late 1950s and early 1960s. Visit Milwaukee, a non-profit group that promotes the city as a tourism and convention destination, is leading an effort to raise $85,000 to commission the statue, which likely would be in the plaza south of E. Wisconsin Ave. and west of N. Water St., near the Chase Plaza office tower. (Full story)

What the...? A freakin' Fonzie statue?!?

We finally get a world-class art museum for the beer-swilling, plebeian drunkards of this blue-collar hell-hole, and they want to slap up a Fonzie statue. For the love of it all, don't they understand that no matter where Milwaukeeans go, the only things people know about this city are Happy Days, The Fonz and Jeffery Dahmer?

Putting up this atrocity will only encourage tourists to hound and pester the citizens with questions about submarine races, Pinky Tuscadero, Joanie and her love for Chachi Arcola, and whether or not Laverne and Shirley have turned into dottering old spinsters fawning over some goomba-tenor named Carmine while walking around town with Brooklyn accents. That's enough to get you shot in my town. I don't want to be confronted by a tourist from Tokyo looking for Arnold's so they can give Matsuo 'Arnold' Takahashi a pat on the back for teaching The Fonz the judo-chop while actively keeping the cultural stereotypes alive and well. And don't even get me started on that whole Mork from Ork fiasco. We'll have every freakin' tin-foil hat in the country pointed at us.

You want the glorious Fifties and Sixties in Milwaukee?

Bring back McCarthyism and see how well that plays out. Where was that on Happy Days?

Please, Milwaukee... Don't jump the shark! We're begging you.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/26/2007 11:04:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] I've Got My Red Pencil Ready...

I saw this article, and I felt the need to scream and scribble.

Disputed book available at Jackson-George libraries, if you ask
By KAREN NELSON
klnelson@sunherald.com

PASCAGOULA --The Library Board [Not exactly a proper noun, is it?] for the Jackson-George Regional Library System voted 3 to 1 Tuesday night to make a best-selling book by comedian Jim Norton available to library patrons again upon request. [Read this again out loud. It's similar to the sound a car makes shortly before its wheels are about to fall off, don't you think?]

The book has been out of circulation since an Ocean Springs patron complained in August. [Really. It's okay to have more than one sentence per paragraph.]

The Library System [Knock it off already!] formed a review committee, which on Tuesday recommended the book again be made available to the public. [However,] It will not go back into general circulation.

Prior to the meeting, Library Board [I give up!] Chairman David Ables said the review committee tries to decide if a book is in keeping with the community's taste. [Who cares if it was prior to the meeting or not? I mean, you could just say, "Prior to the meeting, while driving in his car and eating a tuna-salad wrap from Sally's Delicatessen and House of Boiled Goat, Chairman Dave said..."]

He said [Yeah-yeah. We get it. He's saying things] the libraries use the New York Times Best Seller List[How to treat titles? Hmm... If only there were a way to maybe make the letters slanty or bold to denote the title of a publication or article] as a guide for purchasing books. But once or twice a year a book is challenged and is reviewed. [Don't fear the comma!]

It is pulled from the shelves while under review. [Kind of vague.]

Then it goes to the Library Board to decide what to do with it. [The book gets to decide what to do with itself? I think you seriously over-estimate the book's abilities. And, why the hell is this its own paragraph?!?]

Before the meeting, Ables, who was [was, not is?] on the review committee with the library system's [Yay! *golf-clap* You could have told us this earlier... Oh, wait.] director and several members of the library staff [Aww... He found some friends?], said [Finally!] the genre of humor Norton used in the collection of essays was not a genre familiar to him. [The poor bastard! He's not familiar with humor?]

"The only thing I could come up with is 'shock value,' [Of course. He's got no sense of humor.]

" [Who's responsible for this lost quotation mark?] Ables said [What?]. He compared it with [with, to, pfft!] something like the shock appeal of a horror movie. [How so? I mean, he just said it has shock value.]

David Ogborn, the lone vote against the board's decision, had stronger words for the book, "Happy Endings: The Tales of a Meaty-Breasted Zilch." [It's a book, not a magazine article or short story. Go bold! Plus, the colon is your friend.]

"That kind of garbage there, I don't think belongs in the library, " Ogborn said. "You can call it censorship or anything you want to but there's a difference in right and wrong and that's wrong."

The Library Board [Every time you do this, god kills a kitten] also voted to issue a news release.

"We certainly would like the press to portray us accurately," Ables said, "for the community to have an understanding about how we go about this process rather than being called book banners and censor mongers." [Would a couple of hyphens kill you?]

Library Director Michael Hamlett told the board that the Norton book had not been reviewed by publications that the library system [Yay!] subscribes to and that of the 9,207 public libraries in the U.S. only 278 own the book. [Why are you afraid of commas? What did the comma ever do to you?]

"That says something right there," Hamlett said. "In the past it has been our policy to automatically buy things off the New York Times Best Seller List. [Oh my god! Even with all the foreshadowing earlier, I totally didn't see this coming. You're like M. Knight Shyamalan.] We have reviewed that and we have changed that procedure and will no longer automatically buy things until we have a closer look at them."

When discussing why, since August, Hamlett hasn't returned called [WTF?] from the media concerning the issue, Hamlett said, "I didn't want to chance being misquoted and chose not to respond." [And who'd blame you, Mike? That's the money quote right there!]

Eeesh...

-DP




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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/26/2007 09:27:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] D'oh!

From his dusty, gore-spattered workshop way up there in the Land of Mounties and Maple Syrup, Canadian skeptic Paul Little is most assuredly laughing his frosty bottom off at me, and justifiably so, might I add.

You see, dear readers, a while back I posted a rather screechy screed about a woman's even screechier screed of a letter to a newspaper editor.

Well, as it turns out, it's a hoax. A sham. Someone has pulled the wool over my eyes and pantsed me in the center of town for all the world to see. As Paul would say, I've been "jerseyed." And the vile person responsible for this jerseying is non-other than Alice Shannon.

Weeks later we received the following letter from Ms. Shannon:

“While I’ve been thoroughly entertained by the overwhelming number of passionate responses to my January 29th letter, it should probably be noted that, as at least one writer speculated, it was a complete joke. I think it has run its course and at this time space in the Letters to the Editor section should be reserved for more important issues.”

Now we were angry. Numerous attempts to contact Ms. Shannon proved the letter was a hoax, and we stopped printing any letters referring to hers. Shortly afterward, we received a letter from a person telling us the same letter was found in a blog from a woman from South Carolina, and he sent us the Web address.
Well now... That's something. Of course, Ms. Shannon could have also realized that she was looking like a complete idiot in the newspaper and claimed it was a hoax so as to protect herself, but I've still got a tiny smidgen of faith in humanity to think that it was most likely a hoax from the get-go.

On the other hand (and you just know there has always got to be another hand, don't you?), it doesn't take much searching to find genuine, legitimate examples of hate directed toward atheists. So, if nothing else, Ms. Shannon's "joke" is actually a reflection of a rather common sentiment.



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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/26/2007 06:56:00 AM

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] What the...?

Now, this is just a little on the side of what I would consider tacky (and trust me, for me to consider something tacky, it's got to be downright putrid. Think: Elvis carved out of rancid Spam and plated in gold with diamonds for eyes and purple hair kind of tacky)
Anger at Giuliani 9/11 fundraiser

Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani has been criticised over a fundraising party at which participants are being urged to donate $9.11.
(Full story)
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this definitely crosses some sort of line somewhere. What kind of sick, twisted prick would exploit the countless dead bodies for his own personal gain? It's wholly unconscionable, and beyond disgusting watching Giuliani constantly hump the corpses in his pathetic quest to be president.

Did ethics get pitched out the window? How can anyone justify this sort of exploitation, I wonder. What kind of people would fall for this sort of stunt anyway? Donate nine-dollars and eleven cents?!? Does he have anything other than a mountain of dead bodies to stand upon?

It doesn't matter one damned whit if you are on the Right or on the Left in your political leanings. If you are a human being, you should be ashamed at this man's blatant disregard for the memory of those who died on September 11th, 2001, and you should demand he stop sucking the marrow from the burned and broken bones of our nation's dead in his greedy quest. Those who died that day deserve to rest. They are not carrion for the soulless politicians to pick clean to sate their hunger for power.

Humanity should be embarrassed to share a world with such scum as Rudy Giuliani.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/25/2007 09:46:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] It Was a Day Unlike Any Other Day...

Actually, it was kind of a reasonably decent day here in the land of milk and honey beer and cheese. We had on and off rain which will help my tomatoes lumber their way into ripeness. I don't know why, but for some reason, they just don't seem to be in all that big of a hurry to turn red and edible. They've just hung on the vine as big, green orbs for the past month without showing any signs of life.

This morning, one actually started to turn a little orange. Granted, orange is certainly not tomato-esque, but it's a start, and hopefully, by Christmas, I'll be able to eat a BLT with an actual tomato grown in the garden. It will be a fine replacement for that cumbersome holiday goose, I suppose.

Anyway, I spent a large heap of this rainy day trying to pull my thoughts together while reading over a handful of short stories I'd written ages ago. I don't know why I thumbed my way through the ancient and dusty folder, but it was a nice surprising stroll down memory lane. Lately, I've been a little curious to recapture that storyteller that lurked inside of me. However, introspection while pouring over those stories on a rainy day didn't seem to do much.

Of course, everything was going well and wonderful until my lummox of a cat went from being a delightfully sleeping bundle of fur at the foot of my bed to a full-blown, play-craving attention-whore in a few quick clicks of the clock, and before I knew it, a claw was sunk into my leg and my big toe was being gnawed and slobbered upon. DogCat definitely has his issues, I guess, but I try not to judge.

Eventually, I was able to extricate my digits from the toothy beast, and he was able to leap outside into the rain with his usual level of manic excitement. I was left to stand there watching as he raced around the wet grass, slipping around on the small hill in front of the house, and eventually curling up beneath the spruce tree utterly drained from his wild little two-minute outburst of energy-sapping insanity.

And that is his life. He's either sleeping or chewing on me.

Meanwhile... I am looking for things to write about while waiting for my tomatoes to turn red.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/25/2007 06:02:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Bitterman Update...

As is always the case, there are at least two sides to every story, and the tale of Steve Bitterman's firing which I wrote about yesterday has just that. However, I still contend that Mr. Bitterman's dismissal is based more upon his student's outrage at having their mythology criticized as opposed to his confrontational teaching style. (Link to full story here)
[S]tudents in the class, which was transmitted to a classroom in Osceola over the state fiber-optic network, say Bitterman also told them to question their religious beliefs and at one point in the heated debate told one of the Osceola students, Kristen Fry, to "pop a Prozac."

Fry said she left class in tears.

"I talked to a lawyer and was told that what he was doing was illegal," she said. "He was not allowed to be derogatory toward me for being a Christian. I told my adviser I would sue if I had to."
I think this is still a case of a gutless and cowardly administration crumbling to a very thin-skinned student and her threats of litigation so as to protect her fragile delusions. Bitterman has every right to criticize her religion just as the religious have every right to criticize those whose beliefs are different from theirs. I may not agree with his tactic for encouraging debate within his classroom, but I do not see how he overstepped any boundaries as an instructor.
Bitterman said the Prozac comment was a joke meant to disarm a student who "was screeching at me."

"Sometimes you say something outrageous just to see if you can provoke some discussion. ... I can be a little acerbic at times, I don't deny that," he said. "I certainly take students' viewpoints seriously in the sense that I encourage them to express it, and then I will challenge that viewpoint, regardless of what it is, to see how well they can back it up with reason and critical thought.

"Often, these students are essentially right out of high school and they take things so personally," Bitterman said. "They really can't distinguish between a critical assessment of their argument and an attack upon them personally."
The only mistake it seems Bitterman is guilty of is that of attempting to have a critical and adultdebate in a classroom of emotionally delicate children who, rather than hear any criticism of their beliefs, take steps to silence those who disagree with them. And, the notion that this institution is willing to fire an adjunct so as to coddle these fragile students is an insult.

The world is a very hard and harsh place, and it's clear that this institution is doing nothing to prepare these students for life beyond its halls by censoring those who stress the value of critical thought over willful ignorance.

Now, please keep that quote above in mind: "He was not allowed to be derogatory toward me for being a Christian."

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/25/2007 11:48:00 AM

Monday, September 24, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] And, I Cook!

Okay... Right now, I'm thinking up a pot roast recipe.

So far, the ingredients consist of meat and Guinness beer. From there, I have no idea. I suppose I'll need a vegetable, and a potato or two.

I did look up one recipe that included raisins, but the thought of putting raisins in my pot roast makes me a little stabby. Some things just don't need to be done. Granted, I like raisins. I just don't want to start putting them in places where they don't belong. It's like grapes in chicken salad. Everybody raves about it, but it makes me insane.

Let's see... I've also got a mountain of fresh thyme and a bunch of dried cummin (which always made me and my perverted brothers giggle whenever we saw it peeking out of the spice cupboard in its lewd little way). I think my mother would turn it around just to keep us from making obnoxious jokes about it.

Oh well... I'm off to burn the house down. If you've got a good non-fruity pot roast recipe, let me know.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/24/2007 03:18:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Heh...


I suppose that since I'm on an all-out anti-religious tear today (I'm in a bad mood. Not much sleep last night), I figured I'd share this old picture with you (click the image to see the bigger version if you need to. It's funny).

I don't know why, but I picture Miss Shannon here to be a bloated, toothless, unemployed, former carny who spends her days shoveling cupcakes into her helmet while bitching about people like me and the annoying fact that I'm still free to live a perfectly wonderful and entirely godless life here in "Ummerika."

On the other hand, I do take offense to being called "evil."

I'm actually a pretty nice guy for a condemned and worthless bastard. I give to charities. I'm nice to strangers and animals. I yield to pedestrians. I even put the seat down whenever there's a lady in the house.

So, why, in Miss Shannon's blurry eyes, am I not welcome in the nation of my birth?

I do like the fact that she realizes that even though I have not committed a crime, I am the reason why crime is rampant in our nation. I mean, because I don't believe in God, Ted Haggard is out smoking meth and tooling for man-whores. Or, since I see no need to worship anything, Larry Craig and Bob Allen are soliciting sex in public restrooms. Or, because I pay taxes but refuse to believe in god, Kent Hovind has been lead to not pay his taxes and lie to anyone foolish enough to listen to him. And don't even get me started on the Catholics. I mean, the things they've done as a result of my lack of belief would shock the stripes off a sailor.

The thing is, people like Alice Shannon are a great example of the hazards of a wholly religious society. She has placed her entire education in a book of cobbled together tales and fables of Bronze Age itinerant sheep and goat herders, and she has constructed a nice little bubble of delusion for herself. It justifies her own ignorance and her intolerance. In her mind, hate is something good and godly.

She has found an easy target to blame for all her petty fears and lack of education: ME and those who are like me. It's got to be a sad and lonely world in which she lives. In her world, every redeeming quality I possess is nullified because of my lack of belief.

In my mind, all are welcome here in spite of their beliefs or lack thereof. I think that's the only way for this nation to survive. We should be a beacon of freedom and not a bastion of hate.


-DP


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/24/2007 01:25:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Stapler Wars!


Now, over on the Bad Astronomy Blog, Phil Plait is quite proud of his new stapler.

To his credit, I will say that it's a rather cute and dainty little piece of office equipment. In fact, if Barbie had a temp-job, I think you'd find his adorable little Swingline somewhere on her pink, plastic reception desk.

Of course, it's a little weak.

What you see here is my stapler, and it dominates all who come before it. It was my grandfather's stapler when, as a professor at DePauw University, he hammered the crap out of a lot of cumbersome syllabi for his History and his Scientific German courses. And me? I've used it to put the finishing touches on a great many short stories, essays, articles and whatever else needed binding.

The beauty of it is its big, shiny button. It's the perfect size for the bottom of my fist, and whatever aggression I may be feeling is instantly dispelled with a satisfying smack. Without it, I'd probably be out beating up bag ladies or whatnots.

Anyway, Phil? Your stapler is cute where mine's all about the testosterone. But, you might need to find something more substantial upon which to bash out your angst considering you've embarked down the path of becoming an author. And, Milton be damned, MY stapler is worth burning down an office building for.

-DP


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/24/2007 11:33:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Grrrr....

If you're a Christian, you're probably not going to want to read this, and I sure as hell don't want to hear from you.

This morning, I stumbled across this in the Des Moines Register, and it simply infuriated me:
Teacher: I was fired, said Bible isn't literal
The community college instructor says the school sided with students offended by his explanation of Adam and Eve.
By MEGAN HAWKINS
REGISTER STAFF WRITER

September 22, 2007
A community college instructor in Red Oak claims he was fired after he told his students that the biblical story of Adam and Eve should not be literally interpreted.

Steve Bitterman, 60, said officials at Southwestern Community College sided with a handful of students who threatened legal action over his remarks in a western civilization class Tuesday. He said he was fired Thursday.

"I'm just a little bit shocked myself that a college in good standing would back up students who insist that people who have been through college and have a master's degree, a couple actually, have to teach that there were such things as talking snakes or lose their job," Bitterman said. (link to full story)
Yep. This poor man was fired from his job as an instructor at a secular institution because he questioned the validity of the Adam and Eve story. Yes. A SECULAR institution. This is what America has turned into. As a result of these whimpering, power-hungry Christians, we've become the exact fucking thing which we are fighting against. The worthless Christians are taking their tactics straight out of the Taliban playbook.

Linda Wild, the vice president of academic affairs of Southwestern Community College, is too much of a gutless coward to stand up for what is right, and would rather side with these treasonous theocrats as they seek to dictate and force their religious beliefs upon those who would simply wish to learn about the real world. If this doesn't sicken you, then you really don't deserve to live in this once-free country.

So, Christians, I dare you to defend yourselves in light of this. Do you believe it's right to silence this man simply because he doesn't believe in, or proves wrong, your mythology? You've cast America down a very slippery slope, and the impending Inquisition you are forcing upon America will not end well for anyone.

And, Linda Wild? As a result of your outright censorship, you've broadcast to the world that you are an ineffectual coward who is wholly incapable of operating an institution supposedly devoted to learning. I suggest you step-down before you do further damage to the students and reputation of the Red Oak campus of Southwestern Community College. If you wish to operate the Christian equivalent of a madrasah, I suggest you send your resume to Liberty University.

Disgusting. Christians should be embarrassed in light of this, and they should ALL apologize for trying to ruin the life and career of an innocent man who simply sought to teach the truth through science. You've shamed your beliefs even further. And, when you bleat and whimper about your supposed persecution, don't be surprised when the rational human beings out there laugh in your sniveling faces and tell you to go fuck yourselves. You deserve the condemnation.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/24/2007 10:27:00 AM

Saturday, September 22, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] A Night Game...



Let's see here... Who's in town this week playing the Badgers?

Ooo... Iowa.

Should be a fun game, I think. I don't know if any of you are nearly bored enough to watch, and I don't even know if it's on for anyone outside of Wisconsin, but it's definitely worth watching.

Seriously... Camp Randall at night is pretty much a nuthouse, plus, it's also home to one of the most terrifying traditions in all of sports. The "Jump Around" between the Third and Fourth quarters.

It's madness...

Picture eighty thousand people just sort of bouncing up and down for a couple of minutes...


When I was at a game last year, it felt like a earthquake with a pretty decent soundtrack, but I honestly began to wonder if the stadium could actually withstand it.

Aside from that, things here have been somewhat pokey and out of focus, and I do apologize for that. I've just been in a really lousy mood the last week or so. It's been one of those weeks where if something could go wrong, it did.


Anyway, I'm going to pick Wisconsin over Iowa since my Badgers have the longest winning streak in the nation when it comes to college football, and well... It's freakin' Iowa.

So, how's everyone's weekend going? Did anyone do anything fun and exciting? Did you jump around for no reason whatsoever? Give it a whirl sometime because it might just help.

-DP


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/22/2007 06:51:00 PM

Friday, September 21, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Ah-Haaa!

I love this Star Wars redo.



It's just too funny. Try not to watch it while drinking or eating.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/21/2007 05:12:00 PM

Thursday, September 20, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Speaking of Bose...

This is pretty freaking amazing (especially the ending)...


Bose doesn't just make really nice speakers, but apparently, Dr. Bose has also dipped a toe into the rough waters of the automobile suspension market.

Now, before anyone starts getting the idea that this will somehow make speed-bumps obsolete, do keep in mind that this is the suspension at work here and not the tires. Hitting a speed-bump too hard will still do a heap of axle and wheel damage (smoother doesn't always mean you can go faster). And, sadly, we probably won't see this on American cars for at least a decade, and I can imagine those will only be high-end cars at best. Perhaps the biggest impact will be in terms of rollover by, as it seems, greatly increasing the minimum speed where a rollover could occur.

Still, however, keep in mind that you can only bend Newton's Laws, and when you try to break them, things usually don't end very well.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/20/2007 10:41:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] I Would Never Normally Go Bowling on a Frid...

The title of this post?

Yeah. It's a little odd, but I figure since Dawn is delightfully cheeky enough to title her posts with lines from songs, I could do the same for once. Of course, you'll really surprise me if you know off the top of your head where the line comes from. It is one of my all-time favorite songs, and I tend to use it to blow the dust and the cobwebs out of my speakers, my house and my world.

That's something I just can't do with my little laptop, and it's pretty much why I've always disliked the way music is headed these days. I don't own an iPod, and I see no reason why I ever would. I think I would probably openly weep if I crammed the little phones in my ears to hear a sterile, digitized version of my favorite songs. It's the individually-wrapped, little squares of processed cheese of the music world, I think. Give me the sweet scratch of vinyl and the wow and flutter of an old tape deck conditioned through a couple of Macintosh tube-amps and spat out by some big, honkin' Klipsch and Bose speakers until the neighbors think, Wow. I think Dan hired a band! Who is that? Hootie?!?

Of course, I don't have a Mac tube amp (the REAL Macintosh. Bite it, Apple!)... So, my neighbors probably just think I've lost my mind again.

Aside from that, is there anything on anyone's mind this odd Thursday? I'm kind of at a blank since I spent much of the week just writing and writing until my brain turned into an odd sort of pudding.

So, if you're bored, make me write about something fluffy and pointless. I need ideas.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/20/2007 12:10:00 PM

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] It's Art, Man....


You'll like this site.

From one angle, it looks like semi-artistic gibberish. However, from another angle, strange things happen and the lines start to make sense.

It kind of reminds me of the 3d-sidewalk Art. I always thought it would be a pretty neat thing to have some spots in my house painted with some of that maddening stuff just to freak out the houseguests. This would drive them insane, I think.


--

Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/19/2007 02:02:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Yarrrrg!



Avast ye scurvy dogs!

T'day be th' most glorious o' glory days for she be the International Talk Like Ye Be a Pirate Day!


So, if'n ye be the grog-drinkin' bilge-rats I s'pect, ye be releasin' yer inner-buccaneer on this fine mornin'.

Furthermore, I think ye be needed a true pirate name, so drag yer briny hides to this place to recieve yer fair bounty and bring yer piratin' to the world.

Fair be ye',
Cap'n Argus Bloodbeard



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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/19/2007 07:54:00 AM

Monday, September 17, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Seacrest Out...

So, did anyone watch the Emmy's last night?

I personally made it through about five minutes before Ryan Seacrest made me feel as though I was eating a bowl of razor-blades dipped in lemon-juice. And, every time he clapped his hands to punctuate his flaccid opening monologue, it was as if someone had a staple gun pressed against my forehead and squeezed the trigger right along with confused little hands.

bang.. bang... bang...

In the end, I watched a football game between those Cheatin' Patriots and the Chargers. Patriots won. By a hell of a lot. And, every time I saw a player camped out beneath a kick-off or a punt, I pictured Ryan Seacrest standing there in his shiny tuxedo clapping his hands. And when those returners were greeted with a bone-jarring hit to knock loose their molars, the first thought in my mind was: Seacrest out!

Aside from that, no real reason for writing today. I've not forgotten you all. But, I have had a hell of a busy weekend, and I'll try to scribble a little about that later when I get the chance.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/17/2007 09:58:00 AM

Friday, September 14, 2007

A Notice!


Hi all,

    Now, for some reason, my AOL Mobile-blogging feature isn't accepting the updates for this journal via email.  Normally, when I post to my new blog over on Blogspot, a copy gets posted here, and the alerts get sent out.  Hopefully, I'll figure out how to get it working again, but until then, you'll just have to drop by there:

http://thewisdomofadistractedmind.blogspot.com/


    Sorry about that.  I hope this isn't too much of a hassle.

-Dan
 

Thursday, September 13, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Shredders versus Grinders...

I read this:

LONDON (Reuters) - Eating too much red meat is not only bad for your health -- it is also bad for the planet, according to scientists.

Worldwide, agricultural activity accounts for about a fifth of total greenhouse-gas emissions and livestock production has a particularly big impact because of the large amount of methane emitted from belching cattle. (link to full story)
Now, I know it's all about interpreting the data and all that wiggy, scientific stuff, but the answer isn't less cattle. No, dear reader. This data is telling me that what the world needs is more meat eaters. It's not us carnivores ruining the environment. It's the vegetarians. We meat eaters are doing our best to keep the numbers of these bovine gas-bags down, but the round-toothed, molar-grinding crowd seems to not want to help, and they even make things worse.

The next time I sit down to a nice, thick, perfectly-grilled steak, I am sacrificing my own health to save our precious planet. And what are vegetarians doing besides scolding me and cursing my incisors?

They are eating plants.

What do plants produce?

It isn't freakin' methane.

Which is worse for the environment?

So, the next time you're feeling maybe a little light-headed or hypoxic, blame the vegetarians. They're eating too damn much, and they're killing all the sources of air. I'm just doing my best to keep toxic methane out of our ecosystem by grilling up an environmentally unfriendly bag of gas and tasty meat.

-DP


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/13/2007 09:19:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Suck it, Jesus!


Now, I'm not what you would call a fan of either Kathy Griffin or the wildly hypocritical, iron-fisted thugs at The Catholic League: For Religious and Civil Rights. I don't find either to be all that funny. Still, every now and then, I'll give them both credit and say they do make me laugh. For example, when Kathy Griffin says "Suck it, Jesus" during an acceptance speech at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences' Emmy Awards, I think heh.. That'll annoy someone, I'm sure. And, of course, it did. It annoyed the Catholics (which obviously leads to considerably more hilarity as a result of the poor, oppressed and whiny "85%" of the nation's population).

ACADEMY TO CENSOR KATHY GRIFFIN; SHE STILL NEEDS TO APOLOGIZE

September 11, 2007

Responding to complaints from the Catholic League, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has decided to censor the vulgar remarks that comedian Kathy Griffin made when receiving her Creative Arts Emmy for her show, “My Life on the D-List.” Last Saturday, Griffin, upon winning the award for Outstanding Reality Program, blurted out a scripted remark, “Suck it, Jesus, this award is my God now.”

The Associated Press reports today that Griffin’s comment will be censored from the taped airing of the awards ceremony this Saturday on E! On Sunday, Fox will carry the live Primetime Emmy Awards show.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue had this to say about the news:

“The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences reacted responsibly to our criticism of Kathy Griffin’s verbal assault on 85 percent of the U.S. population. The ball is now in Griffin’s court. The self-described ‘complete militant atheist’ needs to make a swift and unequivocal apology to Christians. If she does, she will get this issue behind her. If she does not, she will be remembered as a foul-mouthed bigot for the rest of her life.”

Seriously, Catholics?

You're going to go after a self-proclaimed D-List celebrity for insulting your worthless mythology? Does this mean that we can go after you for the myriad of crimes throughout history committed at the hands of Catholics and in the name of Catholicism?

We can start with your history of erasing of many of the world's indigenous cultures as a result of the spread of your pestilent philosophy, and we can end with the seemingly non-stop raping of our children as a result of your ecumenical paraphiliacs who are somehow under the impression that because they are closer to your figment than most parishioners, they are entitled to prey upon anyone they damn well choose.

Silly hypocrites... Why should we, as free-thinking human beings, be held to a standard in our lives that you yourselves are not even remotely willing to try to measure up to?

Now, I think the date of Mr. Donohue's statement above is quite ironic. It's the anniversary of that day in our nation's history when, in one well-coordinated series of attacks, a single religious group sought to dictate its dogma upon and censor the voices and the thoughts of this world's people. However, fortunately for humanity (and Miss Griffin in particular), Catholics have moved beyond that whole need to murder non-believers in order to gain respect for their religion. Hopefully, it doesn't piss the Catholics off too much that they can't immolate the heretical comedienne. Those barbaric days are gone, I hope.

Aside from that, I couldn't honestly care less about the Emmy's. But, if they are going to kowtow to the believers of a single archaic fairy-tale, it is certainly nothing I'd ever be willing to support, encourage or even watch. It's distressing to see this sort of censorship in the 21st Century. And, perhaps this foolish award committee would be better served if they changed their name to The Catholic Academy of Catholic-Friendly Television Arts & Sciences. Or, better yet, they could call themselves "Several Unruly Catholic Kingpins In Television Just Expressing Some Utter Silliness" (or SUCKITJESUS, for short).

-DP
(thanks Skeptico)

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/13/2007 07:17:00 AM

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Questions from Behind the Wasatch Curtain.

Now, my good chum Cinzano has taken the internet interview-meme that I did the other day, and she's decided to interview me of all people. And, since Cindy pretty much is the awesomest of awesomes, and since she's unfortunately trapped in that seventh circle of hell called Utah, I have no problem breaking the meme-rules and allowing her to ask me whatever questions she pleases whether I ask for them or not. Some people are just too damn cool that way, ya know. Besides, I like questions.

  • Oprah is having you on her show. What do you want to talk about/be asked about?
Hmm... Her show's an hour long, right? I suppose that would give her sixty minutes to try and get me to like her enough that I would be willing to take anything she has to say seriously. I really don't care for Oprah all that much. After all, she unleashed that chattering, slack-jawed, lackwit Dr. Phil onto the world, and some things are just unforgivable.

On the other hand, if she bought me a car, I suppose there's a chance I'd listen to what she has to say.
  • You find a bag of money...lots of money. Keep it? (If you keep it, what will you spend it on?)
I'd keep it. And then I'd probably start a cult and spend it all on hookers and blow like the soulless reprobate I am.

Seriously, though, I'd try to give it back, and if I couldn't find the person it belonged to, I'd probably donate it to a good cause. I'd just have a hard time spending someone else's money on my own personal enjoyment.
  • Zombies are attacking your town. What's your plan?
Go to the pub.
  • I am going out to buy you a birthday gift, but I have only twenty dollars to spend. (Hey, I just went grocery shopping, man!) What should I buy for you?
You know the answer to this. Just buy me a forty-ounce bottle of malt liquor and get yourself something nice with the change leftover.
  • I am coming over your house for supper. What will you serve me?
I have a cookbook party-planning book on how to serve people from Utah.

Then again, if you're coming to eat rather than be eaten, and seeing as how you've probably not had a decent seafood dinner since the last time you left Mormon-ville, it'd probably be something along the lines of lobster, pan-seared scallops, and more ocean-dwelling critters than you can shake a stick at.

Or, grilled-cheese sandwiches. It really depends on whether or not I'm drinking my forty. This ain't Napa Valley, after all.
  • Thanks for letting me interview you!
Thank you. I always like answering questions, and if anyone has anything to ask, please do, and I promise I'll answer them sometime in the near future.
-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/12/2007 02:25:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Mmmm.... Fresh Bread.


Now, normally, when someone tells me that something is foolproof, idiot-proof, or so easy a four-year-old can do it, I find such claims to be a little dodgy. After all, I'm a moron, and there have just been many, many occasions where clumsy old me has utterly botched something easy to the point where it inevitably turns into a lethal challenge (think George Bush and a bag of pretzels kind of dangerous).

That said, I was leery, but still curious enough to try the recipe for No-Knead Bread found on Jaden's Steamy Kitchen blog.

Now, as you can see in the picture above, I didn't screw it up. Indeed, a four-year-old (or a forty-year-old who thinks like one) CAN make this loaf, and I am just stunned at how perfectly it all turned out. In fact, I actually feel kind of guilty since making bread should not be this easy. A person needs to slave over these things. Arthritic bakers such as myself should suffer to the point of loading up on opiates as a result of all the knuckle-busting kneading required to make something this perfect.

On the other hand, with this, it's just dump, stir, sit, cook, slice, slather and eat. Jaden and her tattooed four-year-old son do a much better job of explaining the steps than I can, so go there.

Yesterday, I made a batch of this dough to sit for its required 12-20 hour stretch (it came out closer to 20 hours). I also made a traditional loaf of some rustic Italian with some garlic and rosemary infused olive oil just to see if I still had the chops to make an old-school loaf with my crippled digits.

It hurt.

Like... Bloody... Hell...

But, it turned out yummy, and it was, for all intents and purposes, a perfectly fine and dandy loaf of bread that was well worth the pain (Pain du Pain).

Then, this morning, I baked off this Kneadless bread, and 45 minutes later, I was rolling on the floor with slices of this light, airy, butter-coated delight that I just could not cram into my head fast enough. And, since I've already torn through about half a loaf already, I took three minutes out of my orgy of bread and butter to make another batch of kneadless dough to bake tomorrow (and this time I backed off on the water a bit and added maybe a quarter cup of my infused oil along with some chopped up fresh oregano).

Anyway, if you like fresh bread (and who doesn't?), and even if you just like the smell of fresh baked bread, this perfect loaf is so easy it's not just idiot-proof, it's Dan-proof.

Eventually, I'm sure I'll figure out a way to screw it up, but until then, I'm eating well and the house smells nice. It's perfect.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/12/2007 12:32:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Gyaaaugh!


What the hell is this?

Forty-six?!?

The world is coming to an end, isn't it? I missed one freakin' memo, and now I'm most likely going to be overcome by a glacier. Then, five-thousand years from now, some archaeologist will dig me up out of my tomb of ice to find me sitting in my comfy chair with a mug of coffee in my hand and Amish porn on my laptop.

Yeah. They'll scratch their heads over that one for a good long time, I imagine.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/12/2007 08:12:00 AM

Monday, September 10, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] An Interview...

AOL Blogger Dawn is doing interviews, and for some strange reason, I decided to jump in and allow myself to be interrogated. It seemed like a fun thing, and when I received these questions in my email last night, my brain immediately began to spin. Dawn's got a pretty good knack at asking the sorts of questions which make it difficult for a lunatic like me to go off the rails into some ridiculous, maniacal babblefest.

So, to get on with it, here are Dawn's questions and my answers.
  • What is the one thing about having a twin, that you enjoy most?
I get asked that a lot, and it's always been kind of a confusing question to me. After all, I don't see that having a twin is really anything special or unique. To me, he's always just been a typical brother who is neither an older brother nor a younger brother. We have different tastes and likes and dislikes. However, I suppose one of the things that I find to be really nice is that whenever he and I get together, because we do understand one another, a certain insane level of humor erupts between us, and it's only a matter of time before one of us is reduced to tears from laughing so hard.

Oh. We also totally kick ass playing games like Pictionary or any other game which requires one to figure out what it is the other person is trying to tell them. I'm not going to say there's any sort of deep, psychic connection, but I do think we understand one another to the point where a lot of things can remain unsaid and still be understood.

  • How did you come to love and own cats?
I like all animals, actually. But, I think cats have always fascinated me. There's an independence about cats, and you've got to work pretty hard to win them over. With dogs you aim for loyalty; however, with cats, the goal is to achieve a sort of respect. And, I think if you can earn the respect of a cat, you can pretty much earn the respect of anyone.

  • Do you feel, as a man approaching his 40's, a more pressing desire to have children?
I don't know if it's more pressing or not as I approach 40, but the urge to have kids is always there. It tends to nag at me from time to time, and there is an occasional sense that life is somewhat unfulfilled without having a kid. But, I'm not going to just have a child for the sake of having one, and the last thing I'd ever want to do is drag a child into a life where the relationship I have with his or her mother is mediocre at best. That's not something I'm willing to compromise on. And, if it means I have to remain childless, so be it.

  • If in order to keep living you had to lose either your sight or your hearing, which would you choose?
Oh. I'd give up hearing. After all, about ninety-five percent of what goes on in the world around us is simply insignificant noise whose purpose seems to only serve as a distraction. I'd miss some things, obviously, but overall I would rather not hear than not see.
  • If you could time travel just once, when and where would you go, and why?
Well, I wouldn't go back in time to alter history in any way since I think it's too damn important that we learn from the events of our history. And, I know I wouldn't go into the future just to sate whatever curiosity I may have since I think that sort of thing would ruin my imagination and inspiration.

So, that said, perhaps I'd go back to a point in time when the world was a vast unknown and scary place, and all anyone needed was a big enough boat and a little ambition. It must have been amazing to live in those days when we had nothing but a raging curiosity driving us to every remarkable corner of the planet. What courage it must take to go to such lengths to erase the ignorance of mankind.

Now, let's see... There are some rules to this whole thing that I am apparently required to post here or face the wrath of many:

If you would like to be interviewed by me, here are the directions!!!!

1. Leave me a comment saying "Interview Me"
2. I will respond by e-mailing you 5 questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your journal with a post containing your answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them 5 questions.

I can handle that, I suppose. If you would like to be interrogated interviewed by yours truly, leave a comment saying so with an email address, and I'll ship out five reasonably simple questions for you to answer in your own journal or blog.

--
Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/10/2007 10:34:00 AM

Saturday, September 8, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Hey Vegas! Go Shopping!


Let's see...

It's Saturday, and my beloved UW Badgers are playing today (Yes. UW. The REAL UW! Bite me Washington!).

They're taking on UNLV, and for those of you in Las Vegas who missed the events back in 2002, and those who possibly haven't yet experienced the maddening horde that is the Wisconsin faithful, let me just clue you in as to what to expect when the Badgers are in town playing your Runnin' Rebels.

First, it's important to note that there will probably be about 20,000 red-shirted Wisconsin fans with cheese on their heads in your stadium which conveniently holds a scant 36,800.

Also, the last time we were there, two or three casinos had been drunk absolutely bone dry, and most of your famous all-you-can-eat Vegas buffets had to shut down and lock their doors early, so please do try to stock up on food and beer (Don't worry; the same thing happened in Pasadena when we went to the Rose Bowl. I'm talking to you House of Pies! And yes! I DO hold a grudge awfully long, don't I?).

Perhaps most important: Electricity. It's hard enough playing football in the freakin' desert. It's almost impossible playing football in the desert in the dark. So, please try to keep the bloody lights on.

Other than that, it should be a fine and exciting contest. The Big Ten is somewhat struggling this year (as I write this, Ohio State and Michigan State are both losing to unranked teams, and after the embarrassment Michigan suffered last week, I can imagine your excitement. Even I'm giddy). Just remember, keep the lights on, feed us well, keep us drunk and no one will get hurt.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/08/2007 11:50:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] This is Charley...

He's not like other cats...


It's a little sweet for a Caturday, but I think I like Charley.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/08/2007 07:16:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] The Inhuman and Incompetent Daniel Cooper...

I don't know how to begin this.

I can't even wrap my mind around the disgust, rage and absolute shame I feel to even consider myself a citizen of a nation which would willingly permit such negligence. One thing is clear, however, Daniel Cooper is a clear example of everything that is wrong with America.

For years, I've been chastised for not supporting this illegal and unjust war in Iraq. I've been scolded by cave-dwelling, uneducated, pseudo-patriotic, troglodytes who've taken my lack of support for Bush's mad Iraqi crusade as a confused example that I somehow don't support our nation's troops. It's as if to them, the war and our troops are somehow one in the same. And, it is wildly irrational and erroneous to connect the two. It's as if, in their tiny, dysfunctional minds, if you dislike meatloaf, you are also somehow anti-fork and knife. And, it is damn frustrating swatting these pestilent little insects away as I try to voice my outrage at a war which everyone knew was built upon false pretenses.

In other words, getting beyond that immense wall of stupid to address the reality of it all is a chore in and upon itself.

However, to accuse me of not supporting the troops is criminal. I support the troops enough to want to see them brought home safely. Today! Daniel Cooper, the undersecretary for benefits at the Department of Veterans' Affairs does not. And, he clearly can not be bothered to either care for or support, in any way, the growing number of broken bodies returning to our nation from this horribly unjust and illegal war.
Cooper says of his Bible study, "it's not really about carving out time, it really is a matter of saying what is important. And since that's more important than doing the job -- the job's going to be there, whether I'm there or not."
Under Cooper, the numbers have become staggering:
Since Cooper was appointed the head of the Veterans Benefits Administration, the number of veterans waiting on their disability claims has increased dramatically, from 325,000 in 2002 to 600,000 today.

On average, a U.S. war veteran must wait six months for an answer to their application. If a vet decides to appeal a denial, the process often drags on as long as three years.

In addition, Veterans Administration hospitals, clinics and counseling centres report that more than 52,000 Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans were diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). But under Cooper's leadership, only 19,000 of those veterans were approved for service-connected disability compensation for PTSD, a significant discrepancy.
Yes. That's right. This delusional bastard is too busy scouring his Bible, proselytizing and trying recruit people into his irrelevant religion to actually do his job. Our soldiers' needs remain neglected while this irrational fool hides in his Bible. He should be shot for this sort of treason in my opinion.

Now --and I'm certain I'll get the email for this--, serving your nation is the highest form of patriotism. However, in light of Daniel Cooper's glaring neglect of our troops, the end of a soldier's tour of duty is met with such incompetence that I am simply left to wonder why in the hell would anyone want to serve in the first place? What kind of so-called "Christian" would willingly neglect the pain and suffering of these broken soldiers in favor of his pathetic Bible study?

These morons call this a Christian nation. They've rewritten our nation's history to accommodate such. And now, reality be damned, the feeble pandering to a worthless figment has driven Daniel Cooper to commit perhaps the greatest crime imaginable --apathy toward our nation's heroes. Our children. Our citizens who have fought to protect us.

Keep that in mind the next time a recruiter calls and begs for you to join.

Now, the abridged version for the mushy-headed delusion nitwits out there who can't understand this, please allow me to present the following hypothetical to demonstrate the hazards presented here:
Your children are starving. However, rather than getting a job, you remain at home reading your Bible. Do your children survive?
-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/08/2007 05:21:00 AM

Thursday, September 6, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Quarantined.



*cough*
*hack*
*wheeeeze..."

I'm sick today folks. I think it's Ebola. Don't worry though, it's a cute, plushy virus.

Anyway, if I don't pull though, who wants my stuff?

So far, I think my vast collection of faux gold chains and polyester leisure suits is going to Paul, but I've still got lots left.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/06/2007 11:33:00 AM

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] A PSA (of sorts).

BoingBoing's Xeni Jardin blurbed about it.

Dwight Silverman wrote about it.

Jay Lee was nailed by it.

What is it?

It's called Quechup, and it's a new social networking site which seems to employ a very special kind of internet asshattery in fetching new members. If you accept the invitation, it will spam everyone in your address book. Do yourself a favor and simply delete the invitations.

So far today, I've gotten a little over a dozen of these things in my inbox, and I expect there may be more on the way.

Consider it a handy little heads-up, okay?

Oh. And if you do sign up for Quechup, do your friends a favor and empty your address book before doing so (or, at least remove ME from the list). After all, you may wind up like this poor guy who found his gmail account suspended as a result of Quechup's temerity.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/04/2007 08:58:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Me... Me... Me...


HowManyOfMe.com
LogoThere are
3
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Well... Now that's not a lot. And really, to be truly unique, I'd only be looking at two counts of murder. That's not so bad, is it?

After all, there can be only one!

-Dan

Thanks Emily Morkengugelfritzen.


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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/04/2007 08:00:00 AM

Monday, September 3, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Labor Day!

Happy Labor Day to all the laborers out there. I do hope you have the day off. Grab something cold to drink, put your feet up, and do try to enjoy the last precious rays of summer.

As for me, I'm off the rest of the day. There's a fire in the back yard and a pile of meat that's not going to cook itself, unfortunately.

Have a great day!

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/03/2007 01:25:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] What the...?!?

I suppose this could be seen as proof that our president is a delusional little wreck:

[I]n an interview with a book author in the Oval Office one day last December, [Bush] daydreamed about the next phase of his life, when his time will be his own.

First, Mr. Bush said, “I’ll give some speeches, just to replenish the ol’ coffers.” With assets that have been estimated as high as nearly $21 million, Mr. Bush added, “I don’t know what my dad gets — it’s more than 50-75” thousand dollars a speech, and “Clinton’s making a lot of money.”

Then he said, “We’ll have a nice place in Dallas,” where he will be running what he called “a fantastic Freedom Institute” promoting democracy around the world. But he added, “I can just envision getting in the car, getting bored, going down to the ranch.” (full story)

Seriously? He's actually going into public speaking? That's damn funny.

That should go delightfully well, I imagine. I mean, Bush's speaking style consists of two things: a collection of terrorizing platitudes and sound bites. And, an almost endless stream of prattling, incoherent gibberish which appeals to no one other than those with the least active minds in our society.

In short, only the equally delusional who ignore the litany our nation's crises and somehow still manage to believe that America is the greatest nation in the world, are the only ones who will be listening to the endless chest-thumping nonsense George Bush has to say.

Does he honestly believe anyone will care what his opinions are once he's no longer president? He's killed a lot of people as a result of his bungling and incompetence. More than two-thirds of the country dislike the man. And, as Rudy Giuliani proves, people no longer care to hear an empty rehashing of 9-11 for the sole purpose of polishing one's image.

Seriously. I don't think anyone will care to hear what Dubya has to say once we are no longer required to listen. In fact, most people have already tuned him out and are just hoping he doesn't drag us further into war in the remaining days of his dreadful, treasonous presidency.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/03/2007 10:59:00 AM

Sunday, September 2, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Xenu Rules!


Apparently, for some odd reason, I am getting a ton of people dropping in from Scalzi's AOL blog where I left the following comment on this entry:
Hey! I embrace my orange jumpsuit. You will too when Xenu returns.

-Dan
http://thewisdomofadistractedmind.blogspot.com/

P.S. I still want my damn flying car!
#1 Comment from dpoem - 8/31/07 1:37 PM
Now, if you're dropping in, do take a moment to say hello and introduce yourselves. We're all friends here.

On the other hand, if you're looking for Xenu, he's not here. He, Travolta and Tommy Cruise are flying their space planes and dropping people in volcanoes. Apparently, it's good for the theta, I guess.

And, on the other, other hand, if you're a Scientologist coming to complain about me picking on your religion, well... tough. You shouldn't have joined a freakin' cult in the first place.

Anywho... Say hello.

We now return to a regularly scheduled Sunday laziness.

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/02/2007 04:13:00 PM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Err...

When I see this:


Obviously, I think of this:
The Upper Class Twit of the Year



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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/02/2007 11:28:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Security is a Wonderful Thing...


Here's just one of the four delightful visions of rodent carnage which greeted me earlier this morning. The poor, little, blind bastard of a mole didn't seem to stand much of a chance against the rather clumsy Ninja skills of DogCat who, though a little slow now and then, seems to have single-handedly (or pawedly) fought back a major offensive of the rodents who had lain siege to the house.

It seems as though he propped up this little item of early-morning death in the crack here as a sort of warning to any others foolish enough to attempt another invasion.

Disturbing.

Very, very disturbing.

It must've been on hell of a night for DogCat.

So far, I've only managed to spot four fallen critters, but I've not checked all that closely. There could be several more lying dead or grievously wounded in the shrubbery along the perimeter of the yard. As it stands now, the walkway along the side of the house looks like the end result of a Somme Valley mustard gas attack.

Of course, when he came in this morning, DogCat just issued his usual grunting greeting as he headed for his food dish. It was almost as if he was saying, Dude? Do you have any idea how tough it is around here once the sun goes down? I deserve treats!




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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/02/2007 10:15:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Relax. It's Sunday.



Here are Two Stunning Minutes of MTV.

MTV Latin America has been putting this little video of trippy sky-gazing into it's circulation in an attempt to rest the weary eyes and minds of its viewers. And, I'll admit, it's pretty relaxing and actually kind of fun.

I've been watching the Flash Version, but there's also a QuickTime H.264 (45.9 mb) and, if you're always on the go and too jacked up on caffeine, there's an iPod version (21.9 mb).

Kind of neat, huh?

-DP

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/02/2007 09:23:00 AM

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Can't Say I'm Surprised...


I do like "Doonesbury," but I don't read the comics all that often. Still, this one got me thinking:

(click for the embiggened version)

Let's see... 70% of a nine-trillion dollar national debt is the result of just three Republican presidents (Reagan the Dumb, Bush the Dumber & Bush the Dumbest).

Yes... yes... I know. Clinton got a blowjob, and that nullifies everything apparently. Still, I think with this crisis, we need a Constitutional Amendment which states that whenever a president balances the budget and erases the national debt, that president deserves any kind of sex he or she damn well pleases without any sort of judgment or public scorn whatsoever.

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Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 9/02/2007 08:26:00 AM