Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Edge of Exhaustion

I never thought I'd say it, but the election is finally getting to me. I can't turn on the idiot box when I come home from work with any kind of anticipation. The final week of whipping up their bases has left me with a bad impression of Brahmin, and a worse impression of Fearless Leader than I already had. On one hand we have a stentorean drone, on the other a goofy babble that rarely runs in complete sentences without the teleprompter running on high revs. Like millions of others, I see moments where, if I were Brahmin, I would lay the smack down on Fearless Leader in a completely different manner. Of course, I don't have any highpriced fluffers whispering in my ear either. Still.... See? I can't even get into detail about it in writing because the sap is gone.

Come next Tuesday, I will vote and swill bourbon (a grand election day tradition) and eagerly watch the returns with either a rising sense of relief, or a sinking sense of irretrievable doom. Either way, the bourbon will save me. You bet...redemption in corn squeezin's. It worked for people like Davy Crockett and noreason it cain't work fer me, by CRACKY!

It's back to
online cricket for now.

Chin chin! Do have fun with your ... mudpies.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Fearless Leader?

This, if true coming from Pat Robertson, ought to be the final nail in the coffin of the presidency of Fearless Leader. The confidence that some of us read as having gone over the line into stubborness seems more like complete detachment from reality. I think even denial is too weak a word to use here. This is a bit like Joe Torre saying, "We expect the Red Sox to forfeit each game." The unreality of this comment is beyond bizarre. Is it true, or is Robertson getting a whack in at Fearless Leader for some real or imagined slight, such as not giving him a greater voice in the campaign, or appointing him to a cabinet post?

Maybe I am misunderestimating the subliminababble messages coming to Fearless Leader from the Almighty, or His conduits like PR. Maybe we should believe anything he VP Sauron say. Maybe the changing justifications for war in Iraq are all we need to sustain us. Maybe the three teachers in Oregon were just getting what they deserved.

No. There's a serious problem when the GOP shuts out dissenters and threatens even peaceful non-confrontational protesters with arrest. First of all, it smacks of the F word (the one that ends in "m"). Second of all, what are they afraid of? Are they afraid that Fearless Leader will have his "spotless" image tarnished by such a scene? Will his base suddenly percieve the multitude of cracks in the edifice?

Brahmin may be a bit vague about his plans, and he sure doesn't light me up with political fervor, but he's a thinker and he doesn't demand loyalty oaths be signed at his rallies. That alone is enough to have me vote for him. I refuse to vote on the basis of fear generated by the republican spin machine. Brahmin has what it takes to put the kaibosh on Al Qaeda and perhaps even North Korea and Iran,which Fearless Leader clearly does not. Brahmin sees us as engaged in the world, Fearless Leader sees us at odds with it. That seems regressive to me.

Friday, October 15, 2004


Yes, indeed. Pelicans are another species that I love to watch. I recall driving down Highway along the San Mateo coast, looking out over the cliffs south of Half Moon Bay. We were doing about 60mph and I noticed that the brown pelicans were keeping pace as they flew nap-of-the-earth of the wave tops. They were nearly insolent with their ease of flight. We were nothing in our aluminum buggy. Just a bunch of noisy, hairy, flatulent earthbound primates.

Hip Liz don't like Magpies. Refers to them as "shitpiles." He may be right, but I always thought geese were the shitpiles of the bird world. They congregate on our playing fields now and will never leave. Changes in the climate have obviated the need to migrate. Now, the right fielders in Albany must tread through fields of goose shit to track down the fly balls. They didn't even have to put up with that at Candlestick!

The Birds

There are some bloody big ravens around here these days. I hear the croaking nearly everyday here at the Big U. They are corvids, a family of birds which include crows, magpies, rooks, jays, jackdaws, et. al. For some reason they fascinate me. I've often wanted to have an army of trained crows and ravens at my command. "The Birds" certainly caused some of this. Still, it wasn't just any bird I wanted at my beck and call. It was ravens. Huge, black, malevolent ravens against whom my enemies would be helpless.

There's a tree here on campus that must be about 60 feet high, and it is raven central. As students and profs and various wandering geeks go back and forth underneath its lower branches, half a dozen to a dozen ravens will be in the upper reaches, squawking and croaking, kind of like the houses of Congress. They're probably arguing about how to divvy up that day's squirrel carcasses or see who gets to terrorize the pigeons on Sproul Plaza.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

The Big Show

I refer to last night's shenanigans. It seemed like more of the same, perhaps a little less impressive on the part of Brahmin, but maybe he just suffers from certain theatrical limitations. He ain't exactly the type to deliver a stemwinder that gets the crowd roaring for someone's blood. Or it could be that domestic issues just don't carry the same amount of drama for someone like me who's white, has a job, and healthcare and (for now) relatively decent schools to send his kid to, no matter how much I may know that those things are huge for many people. I still think he won, even if he did step on his d**k once or twice.

Fearless Leader continued in the same vein I've always perceived, something far less than presidential, inspiring no confidence at all in me. He displayed that lunatic grin that at times seemed to include teeth being clenched behind it, as though there was a bad, coppery taste of something oozing back down his throat from whence it came; maybe the bile that had risen that he'd reminded himself not to hurl at Brahmin. The bad jokes and the private, snorting barks of laughter were unnerving. Does he do that often? Does it happen in cabinet meetings? Do his handlers caution him against that and wince when he lets fly? Does snot ever fly across the podium? Did I see Scheiffer recoil slightly at something when Fearless Leader snorted about media outlets?

I could go on in that vein, but why? Fearless Leader does not seem fearless to me, and he never has. I just don't get how he's gotten it over all these years since 2000. Last night, as in the first debate, I kept waiting for his tantrum to finally boil over when he would pound the podium harder and faster and yell "What's the MATTER with you people?!?! Can't you understand? Brahmin is so a liberal weenie! He' s a WEENIE WEENIE WEENIE WEENIE WEENIE!!! Why can't you people SEE that?"

For all you Fearless Leader supporters out there, I'll give him high marks for his expressions of how faith plays a role for him. I felt he was being genuine there. Otherwise, I still can't understand how anyone ever bought his act in the first place. I have never felt the slightest confidence in this guy. On the likeability factor, I don't really have any need to relate to the president. I don't care to have a president I'd want to have a beer with. I want a president I trust will be a smart, responsible, thoughtful, decisive individual. I don't want to like the president, I want to respect the president, not suspect that he's a tool.

OK, that's all. That's the end of my tantrum. Fearless Leader is NOT fearless! He's not he's not he's not he's NOT!

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The American Political Tradition

So, now we have laptops being swiped from some local GOP headquarters somewhere (obviously this is a bit unconfirmed so if you know let me know), and computers and other paraphenalia being taken from the Democratic headquarters in Lucas County, Ohio (I dunno Mr. Fudd! What is round on both ends and high in the middle?"). We're right there, deep in the grand old tradition of American politics, with sensitive info being stolen, stretchers being told by both sides, and blatant falsehoods being put out by Fearless Leader's campaign and the man himself.

Aside: I never said this would be a non-partisan exercise. I don't support the election of Fearless Leader.

Even with the Lidless Eye feeding us constant coverage of these people, I can't seem to erase the image of a bunch of guys who look like the little man from the monopoly cards, or President Taft, sitting around in a backroom waving their macanudos with one hand, the other with the thumb hooked in the watchpocket of their vest, haw-hawing and yelling "Balderdash!" by turns as they plot out the near future of their vast fortunes as seen through the election. In the swirling blue smoke they will decide who is elected, slop down their expensive booze, and look forward to The Season at Saratoga, and Palm Beach, and perhaps a cruise in the Mediterranean, that is if Europe hasn't gone up in flames by then.

Fuuny, but at the same time as this cruel tableau runs through my mind in a loop, I also see another Progressive Era figure who blows aside the smoke like a bracing wind from the north. TR strides into the room, and with a wave of his hand sends the Robber Barons runnign for cover. Just wishful thinking I guess.
Brahmin ain't exactly TR. Hell, even TR wasn't a paragon of all that's right and true, but he was a forceful and scholarly individual, which is far more than we've had at the helm these past four years.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Another one, just because...

...a friend says there ain't much here.

Well, I'm new to this, and I am technologically deficient.

Aha. It's finally there. Well. OK. Now we'll see if anyone bothers with this at all.

Now a little raving. What I really want to see in the debate is Brahmin to go over to Fearless Leader and give him a noogie, THEN get on with the actually mudslinging. Fearless Leader ain't nuthin' but a frat boy at heart anyway. Afterwards, they could have a good old SKull and Bones Beer Bong, right there onstage with Scheiffer joining in.

Speaking of Bob Scheiffer, he's one of my old favorites because he's always looked like he had a really dirty joke at the forefront of his mind, and was barely holding back the laughter. Is this campaign a dirty joke? Hmmmm....
I'm fortunate to be married to a professor of biology who is smarter than me AND is a raving beauty (why not marry someone smarter than yourself at whom you can stare in rapt admiration whenever you want?), and we are fortunate to have a riotous and happy 13.5 month old son. He is happy even though he was born into an election year (poor wee tyke!) and we never play enough music around the house.

I was born on the Marine Corps base at Barstow, CA but from the age of 7 grew up in Berkeley, CA. Now I'm a raspy old man of 46 (though not nearly as old and raspy as many my age) and I'm basically happy with who I turned out to be as a person. NOT that there ain't questions now and then, but what the hell? I just don't wanna get too cocky, or someone might come down from above and give me the karmic boot right where it hurts the most.