Went canvassing door to door today…

…and I didn’t get shot by a Texas Republican. Well, most of Pflugerville is more aligned with Austin when it comes to guns but as I stayed close to the Democratic script, I still let every person I spoke to, go to the primary of your choice. Texas is open which is good and bad. Good, you don’t have to be committed. Bad, both sides can play spoiler if they feel their candidates have the job locked up.

Besides, the POTUS is the only gig up for grabs. There’s a bunch of other positions on the ballot. I’ve been losing confidence in the Federal level since more can be done at the local level, namely building new parties to oust the two crappy ones we have.

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Proof that cats do scale

Given how much our Maine Coon cat Chaos has grown, I may be experiencing Princess Jasmine’s problem whenever I’m in my office trying to get stuff done. Metztli and Aggie are only guilty of standing up on my lap when I’m typing. They haven’t decided to warm their bellies on the keyboard.


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Future “beef rice” reminds me of a cereal from the Seventies

I’m not going to make the same lazy jokes Colbert went with on this creation. Personally, I think it could be a step in the right direction alongside lab-grown chicken nuggets. My first thought when I saw it brought back a really, really ancient memory of when I was a small kid. Something I hadn’t remembered in decades…Pink Panther breakfast cereal. Anything cool was a thrill growing up because my parents rarely bought “the good stuff,” so we had Cheerios, raisin bran, Chex, etc. 90 percent of the time. It was for the best. I didn’t have my first cavity until I was 13 and my brother at 12.

Given how popular the Peter Sellers’ movies were and the Pink Panther was a regular show on Saturday morning cartoons up to the early Eighties, it was only reasonable to give him a cereal! I bet my parents were curious about it too. Do I remember what it tasted like? Hell no! I only recall it turning the milk pink! Something mom pointed out to us. At the age I was (four?), pink milk seemed to be magic.

With this new rice, I would like to try it. I best it could be awesome as astronaut food. We all need to get used to such things too. Climate Change will make sure my favorite junk foods will be casualties: Burgers and Pizza; given how much real estate, water and grain it takes to raise meat. Throw in how cruelly Bovine University is operated…it’s not a matter of if with the shift, it’s going to be sadly a when. I can’t wait to see the MAGAts hold their collective noses and eat this.

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RIP Bob Edwards

For us NPR nerds, Bob was the voice we woke up with until he was fired from Morning Edition in 2004. With me, I’d say I got hooked on NPR completely in 1993 because the FM stations in Central IL sucked donkey balls yet my addiction had started in drips and drabs around 1991 with the Gulf Distraction. What a cool, deep voice he had. Bob was certainly a way better host than the stenographers and flaks corporate radio employs.

When he announced his “retirement” 20 years ago, I thought it was crap. In their defense, all his successors are qualified people in their own right, except Juan Williams who got his just desserts for giving Darth Cheney softballs. The assholes who thought Morning Edition needed a new and/or younger sound are the usual MBA morons promoting change for its own sake. For crying out loud, this is NPR! It’s public radio! You know, radio for nerds and people who prefer to be informed about the world, not the crowd hanging on every word or lame fart joke from the local zoo show! Even fictional character Lisa Simpson tunes in.

Bob was Morning Edition much like Johnny Carson was The Tonight Show! He molded it into something that was not a clone of All Things Considered, the first syndicated NPR show for weekday afternoons. If they wanted to test other stuff, give him a co-host and/or let Bob “fade out” as host emeritus until he could retire on his own terms. Losing him, was equal to losing a great, close friend and co-worker who suddenly disappeared one Monday morning. In his case, they did let him announce his departure and it felt more like seeing this same person I described earlier, packing up his desk. Such a New Coke move.

A couple years later, the truth made its way out when Bob finished his career with his own talk show on Sirius/XM. He probably made a ton more money and enjoyed not having to participate in the annual panhandling drives.

Thank you for everything Bob! You were a class act! You set the standard for dozens. You made even my worst mornings in Central IL and Austin slightly better with your calm, rich kind voice. Best of all, you were the anti-Howard Stern! If there’s an afterlife, I hope you have a talk show, getting the scoop from Historical figures both great and evil.

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Happy Valentine’s Day ’24…except for Catholicism

All possible plans got wrecked by getting sick last week, namely leaving little treats and cards for my co-workers. Jennifer isn’t keen on flowers or anything syrupy and preferred to enjoy a nice Mardi Gras dinner when it’s not so crowded. My other peeve was trying to find valentines not manufactured in China. They charge enough such “tiny” papers. I think I need to start making them now or tomorrow, when all the good stuff is on clearance.

The part that’s a pisser, the horniest and snackiest days of the year coincide with Ash Wednesday, one of the dumbest religious boondoggles ever. I think I lucked out on these two events never lining up when it mattered, when I was in grade school! Imagine, looking forward to all the goodies and then being denied because of an arbitrary rule made up by people who don’t know shit about sex too. I could never wait to wipe the stupid ashes off my forehead. What an asinine display of so-called faith. I get it, I get it, you’re Catholic and you buy into this crap. Now you’re acting like a pushy Protestant!

Next year will be better, I promise!

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Futurama find at the thrift store!

A co-worker discovered this lost treasure from 2000 at a Goodwill. Only $3 a pair so with tax, not bad to get the whole gang for $15 add them to my theater and other jokes!

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Poor Sarah has big problems: her mother is persistently annoying, her boyfriend is giving off signals that their relationship is ending and she just doesn’t have any serious friends. Then it gets worse. After coughing up blood for a while, the doctor tells Sarah she has a terminal disease.

Not all is lost! In this near future, dying citizens can have a clone made to fill the void their demise would leave. So Sarah decides to undertake the expensive procedure partially out of spite at her mother and soon-to-be-ex-boyfriend.

Clones are only identical in their appearance when they’re created but their minds and personalities are empty. The “original” must then imprint as much of themselves on to the clone before death arrives. The more time the duo spend together, the closer the clone will become to being indistinguishable to the deceased…usually.

New Sarah quickly becomes a disaster. She’s nothing like the original, she’s pleasant to be around and a pain in the ass. Ergo, the ex-boyfriend and mother prefer New Sarah, leaving Sarah even more isolated and depressed. If things couldn’t get any worse, after 10 months, Sarah’s condition goes into remission and it appears she is going to live!

Sadly, no, Sarah’s current problems will now be dwarfed by New Sarah invoking her rights as per the 28th Amendment which says a clone can apply for personhood. Within this law is a provision; one year after the clone files the petition, the original and the clone must fight a duel to the death for there can only be ONE SARAH. The government airs the duels for entertainment purposes as well as utilizing them to set the record straight on who won the right to the contested personhood.

I loved Dual. It’s a low-budget movie with a kick-ass premise on par with a great episode of The Twilight Zone or Black Mirror without it feeling padded for time. Throw in Karen Gillan as the troubled heroine and Aaron Paul as her combat trainer, it was nearly perfect! Much like other underrated, low-key Sci-Fi flicks Gattaca, Looper and Robot & Frank, this proved how awesome Sci-Fi movies don’t need to be covered in special effects to tell what was an excellent story to begin with. Execution can overcome glitzy crap.

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COVID-19 defeated!

It’s finally over! Until I contract it again! I can get out of the house without worrying about infecting Travis County and incurring the wrath of Dave Anthony. This round wasn’t as nasty as last year nor when I received the second dose of the vaccine.

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My Stars’ losing skid finally ended last night

Last night, my Stars finally snapped their frustrating four-game skid which also kicked us out of first place in the division! OK, maybe not. I just checked the AHL site. Holy buckets, the Admirals have been on a winning tear…14 games in a row! Plus the Griffins with seven. OK, we need to get it in gear for the playoffs. We’re past the half-way mark. Our first round knockout last season was the white turd hidden and then discovered in the clam chowder.

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Biden wasn’t the first POTUS with dementia

The rather damning conclusion to the independent DOJ investigator for Grampa’ Brunch’s improper collecting/storing of classified documents backfired. Well, it really just solidified what everyone already knew, he’s too fucking old now let alone a second term. The same for Orange Foolius. They’re both, two old farts spouting nonsense with Pelosi n’ Grassley. Not sure if Bernie is still sharp or the Corporate Media isn’t cunning enough to catch him. I still think he should also retire, make an opening for a younger person to carry on.

Meanwhile, this moronic quote attributed to St. Reagan demonstrated the duality of how willfully ignorant and stupid he really was. On top of it, I cropped out the graphic’s main goal, to shill a “book” arguing why intelligent design is valid, aka, how KKKristians can stealthily force religion into Science, primarily to “refute” Evolutionary Theory.

Nobody in the universe thinks nor believes that gourmet food bubbles up randomly from Chaos. If it were the Internet, then you could bet dollars to donuts, Libertarians do since it is anathema to acknowledge “Big Gov’t” creating their livelihoods to spread bullshit any more than the same entity won WWII or landed 12 people on the moon and brought them back alive. However, I’m not surprised, some semantic-based turd lawyer and/or sophist put this into Ronnie’s empty head. It couldn’t have been Nancy’s, racist, classist astrologer Joan Quigley, this asshole knew servants made her food and just hoped they didn’t poison it every day.

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RIP Mojo Nixon nee Neill Kirby McMillan, Jr.

Dammit! Here I thought I wouldn’t have to sweat through as much awfulness this year and one of my favorite artists from college had a heart attack and died during a celebrity cruise (Outlaw Country). Given how his final hours were described, Mojo lived to the end!

What a career he had too! For the uninitiated, the short, lazy version…Mojo Nixon was the R-rated, Redneck Weird Al even though he didn’t do parodies; covers, yes, namely his best being “Girlfriend in a Coma” by The Smiths. Morrissey probably despised it. Johnny Marr probably loved it. No idea about the bassist and drummer.

I remember when he hit my personal radar months before his first hit was on the radio as a novelty song in the Fall of 1987. I was at Atomic Records, Milwaukee’s most elitist and unfriendliest store on a Saturday in the Spring of 1987. They started playing a videotape of Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper (his original partner) singing “Burn Down the Malls.” The song’s bridge is when I became a fan! Mojo ranted about the double standard of American laws affecting 18-year-olds: they can’t have a beer. Meanwhile, banks could issue credit cards to them (indenturing them to debt), they can get married (mess themselves up real good) and when Reagan gets the war he wants, they’ll be drafted (and die) first! I didn’t have any luck finding a physical record or CD by the duo until I visited a nicer shop in the Chicago area during Easter break. It was their EP Get Outta’ my Way! and pressed only on clear vinyl which required covering the LED sensor on my roommate’s turntable to play it.

Fast forward to all the Mojo Mania on MTV circa 1988! Martha Quinn had already left the network for her career of Obscurity so I guess she didn’t need to fear him via the mean song mocking the worst VJ in History, go look it up. I don’t want to be cancelled. Mojo and Skid’s newfound popularity allowed them to do bumpers on the channel.

Then I got to cross paths with Mojo & Skid in the Spring of 1989! Why they agreed to play in Milwaukee was beyond me. I was an unpaid intern at WQFM and they showed up that Friday afternoon before their show! Downstairs Dan even put together a chicken drop for the duo to play with a couple callers. For a crappy AOR FM station, Dan was a creative and unappreciated DJ for the station and city. They also brought their gear to accompany their CD playing “Elvis is Everywhere” when Dan queued it up. I then had the honor to drive them back to the venue, Milwaukee’s main VFW Hall! No memory of what we discussed on the short trip. I was too star struck! I do remember it was a helluva show. Mojo couldn’t resist the VFW having visible basketball hoops, so he shot a few during his a cappella take on “Mushroom Maniac.”

The following year, Mojo and Skid parted ways and it was all Mojo via his solo breakout Otis which failed to continue the momentum he built thanks to the record label going bust, plus “Bring me the Head of David Geffen!” probably pissed off David Geffen. He toughed it out by landing minor roles in Great Balls of Fire, Car 54 Where are You?, Super Mario Brothers (1990) and Rock n’ Roll High School Forever. He managed to find smaller labels to distribute his music, namely 1992’s Horny Holidays, a 1994 team-up with Jello Biafra and finally 1995’s excellent comeback Whereabouts Unknown. We crossed paths again at Austin’s respected Antone’s and he remembered me! Told me about all the drugs he did with the promoter at the after show. Mojo hadn’t missed a beat in six years!

He went on to do numerous things as his music output began to dwindle. In the Nineties, I do recall he was a fixture at SXSW hosting a showcase of similar artists. Mojo was a great fit for SXSW long before it was destroyed by the shitty Music Industry. I missed his most famous show in 1992 too. He was performing at Austin’s infamous Hole in the Wall (it is hanging on by a financial thread now given it’s around the UT campus) when SXSW was just about music for a long weekend. Joining him on stage was a drunk Don Henley to sing along to “Don Henley Must Die!” I recall Marc Maron asking him on a live episode of the WTF Podcast about how it all came together; I only remember Mojo saying, Don staggered off the stage and tried to get into his car. Outside music, he did more low-budget movies, like the one in which his butt crack turned people into zombies. He provided his unique voice for a couple video games. He mostly found success as a DJ in Ohio, San Diego and finally on XM/Sirius.

I saw Mojo one last time over a decade ago at Austin’s Continental Club. He was mainly performing as part of a documentary covering his career so there weren’t any new songs. I liked how he made a self-deprecating joke about the changes in his appearance (we can’t help the ravages of time): I’m paraphrasing but it was mainly, “I used to look like a young Elvis, now I resemble your uncle who watches porn all day.” We talked briefly because hey I still have one of his original tour shirts: a gas-station, work-discouragin’ shirt so you can look like a bum…as it said in the liner notes of his records if you wanted to buy one via the mail. No web sites to give you instant gratification. Fan credibility was dedication then.

Farewell Mojo! Thank you for everything you did, especially broadening my musical tastes. Although you were humorous 90% of the time, you were my entry-level drug into the now established genre Americana, Country that Doesn’t SUCK nor is Jingoistic a la also dead Toby Keith. Your material showed me how awesome Lyle Lovett, Elle King, Lydia Loveless, Jason & the Scorchers, The Beat Farmers, Steve Earle & the Dukes, Webb Wilder, Lukas Nelson, Jason Isbell, The Drive-By Truckers, Amanda Shires, Leftover Salmon, Raul Malo & the Mavericks and The Mastersons are! You were truly a Renaissance Man too. An actor, a generous host, Olympic luge team sponsor and a free speech advocate who was in the wiser camp: you need to take responsibility for the things you say don’t bitch about being cancelled, especially if it wasn’t truly funny. When I can move about more freely with a “negative” COVID-19 result, I will pour one out for you on my Mushroom Mania shirt…and wash it immediately because, cheap beer stench isn’t how I want you remembered.

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1974: Blazing Saddles! debuts in theaters!

The movie they say you couldn’t make today but if you know the story behind the making of Blazing Saddles!, you’d already know Mel Brooks had difficulty making it then! I figure numerous state the ignorant phrase to acknowledge how humor evolves and the critics of it, Team America and The Life of Brian miss the point. To me, the villains making all the racial slurs are not just the villains, they also prove to stupid and the many Johnsons who make up Rock Ridge learn that not all stereotypes are accurate. The thin-skinned Mills and Zoomers who feign their disgust quickly forget how they found the weak shit from Adam Sandler they loved religiously, was never funny…he was just another Jerry Lewis, no talent and full of himself.

What I find the funniest outside Blazing is how Warner Brothers didn’t have any notes nor objections over the n-word being used amongst the mocking of the Germans, Chinese and Irish. No, they found the farting scene to be the most tasteless part. Plus, when it was aired on CBS, slurs were left intact while the Yiddish word shtupp (sic) was dubbed over to just “shhhhh…” I would say it backfired. It only gave us Gentiles a strong clue what this word meant since schmuck was frequently heard on TV.

I think the hardest part Mel’s masterpiece of parody will have in finding a future audience to preserve its legacy, will be the core jokes…all the tropes in Westerns. When it hit the theaters in 1974, this genre had mostly faded from mainstream film and TV but everyone was familiar with he was poking fun at. Americans grew up watching John Wayne, Jimmy Stewart, Lee Marvin, Roy Rogers and Clint Eastwood through either medium. Mel adding few drops of reality colliding into the mix of clichés is what sold it. The same for Airplane!, Top Secret, Young Frankenstein, Silent Movie and High Anxiety. Parodies of other genres contemporary audiences aren’t exposed to very often anymore: the airline disaster; WWII; Horror minus gore, guts and jump cuts; slapstick and Hitchcock thrillers respectively. I’m just glad I may be in the last generation to “get it” and truly enjoy it, not sit back and poo poo via chronological snobbery or presentism. Oh, by the way humorless people, I knew even then, the n-word was wrong and inappropriate way back in the pre-internet days we all call the Seventies and Eighties. Ergo, Blazing Saddles! never said, and still doesn’t, you now have permission to say it. Those who did, especially in Public discourse…remnants of George Wallace supporters. Today, we call them MAGA voters’ grandparents.

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@#$*! I got Covid-19…encore ’24

I’m not posting a picture of the test, we all know what the ‘positive’ result looks like and it sucks! Plus, shouldn’t ‘positive’ be the good outcome along with one line? Then again, tech language from Science isn’t necessarily intuitive. The good news, I alerted those two nice friends I spent the most time with and they are both in the clear! So who gave it to me? I have no clue. My opinion is, I caught the flue because it was how I really felt late Sunday and then COVID-19 snuck in for the KO!

All is not lost. I can work from home for am I feeling functional enough to try unlike last time. The only health-based setbacks? Staying true to my resolutions on cutting back the sugary drinks and beef. I better recover soon, I have things I really want to do by the next weekend!

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No substantive post: out sick

Crap! I was having a great weekend, celebrating 30 years in Austin with a new friend I made and another I enjoyed brunch with yesterday. Then I realized later today, I might have COVID-19 again. Double crap! If I’m still feeling awful, I get a test.

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Picky eaters

These types make it difficult for those with real dietary issues, especially when they go to the gourmet and chain joints.

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