Archive for February, 2006

Like a bird on a wire

My friend Lord Somber hates when people post what they’re currently listening to, reading, watching, pluggin, etc. In the interest of annoying him, I revisited my Leonard Cohen greatest hits CD recently and was reminded why I listened to it for almost a year nonstop. He’s a master; the British apparently think he’s depressing (and he is) but in that really bittersweet way. As usual, a few lyrics:

Oh, you’ve seen that man before/
his golden arm dispatching cards/
but now it’s rusted from the elbow to the finger/
And he wants to trade the game he plays for shelter/
Yes, he wants to trade the game he knows for shelter/
You hate to watch another tired man/
lay down his hand/
like he was giving up the holy game of poker/

~The Stranger Song

Your faith was strong, but you needed proof/
You saw her bathing on the roof/
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew ya/
She tied you to her kitchen chair/
She broke your throne, she cut your hair/
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah/


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Meet my new nephew, Jackson Glenn Lee. I FREAKIN’ LOVE HIM!!!!!

He’s my fourth nephew. I have one lone niece who is very delicate and petite but has essentially learned that, if she wants to remain physically intact, she’ll play with the big boys, as it were. I can relate. Her brothers refer to her as “the devil.” My father calls them all “the thundering herd.” Sparing feelings was never really something that went on in my family…

Anyway, Jackson looks a lot like my brother — same sort of intensity around the eyes.

Kids are cool.

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The death of emapthy

Okay so here’s something I don’t get: When did it become a sign of weakness to show compassion? And I don’t mean all that white-man’s burden, macrocosmic compassion for the future of the dung-beetle type of compassion — I mean the human, day-to-day compassion for the dude who may be going through a hard time and is acting a bit cagey or the woman who’s kid is ill so she’s difficult to talk to (these are just examples, mind you…). Why is everything schadenfreude? Not everything is funny and sometimes people need to be given a freakin’ break. Even if it’s hard and you must swallow your pride a little. This ability — I believe — is actually the prime divide between humanity and other higher organisms, as opposed to the popular conception that the ability to reason is what really separates the species. I think it’s the ability to empathize. And we waste it every day. That pisses me off.

Oh and, for the record, some things are really really funny. The ability to separate who needs to be laughed at and who just needs — ahem — a hug is also a decidedly human ability. As far as I’m concerned, the jackass in the red Miata pulled over by the cops can get laughed at every time.

I’m just sayin’…

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Through the Looking Glass

Man, I love computer/music nerds. This guy has developed a databse that tells you the # 1 song on any date (presumably since 1958 when Billboard started keeping such records).

Mine (August 25, 1972) is “Brandy, You’re a Fine Girl” which is a song my college roommate introduced me to in, say, 1992.

Brandy, you’re a fine girl/
What a good wife you would be/
But my life, my love and my lady/
Is the sea

Little did I understand the significance… . I feel oddly the same as when I found out that Elvis Costello and Sean Connery were both born on my birthday. Arbitray coincidence cannot stop delusions of grandeur, my friends.

Go here to find out what people liked on the day you entered this world.

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Go West young skank

This is the funniest sentence ever (pardon the hyperbole…):

“Paris Hilton was partying at Tao over the weekend, being the classy woman of sophistication we’ve all come to know and love. Either nobody taught her you’re not supposed to spread your legs in a short dress, or she’s some sort of fashion pioneer. Like Davy Crockett, but instead of exploring the frontiers of the West, she explores the frontiers of being a whore.”

Check the pic (if you dare) here.

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Where’s the love?

Right on Hitch.

A small democratic country with an open society, a system of confessional pluralism, and a free press has been subjected to a fantastic, incredible, organized campaign of lies and hatred and violence, extending to one of the gravest imaginable breaches of international law and civility: the violation of diplomatic immunity. And nobody in authority can be found to state the obvious and the necessary—that we stand with the Danes against this defamation and blackmail and sabotage. Instead, all compassion and concern is apparently to be expended upon those who lit the powder trail, and who yell and scream for joy as the embassies of democracies are put to the torch in the capital cities of miserable, fly-blown dictatorships. Let’s be sure we haven’t hurt the vandals’ feelings.

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Thanks Lord Somber.

The Empire Brokeback

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My mother says that one of the great mysteries of my generation is the way we are all so quick to jump into “serious” relationships. “Your father and I, ” says she, “dated other people while we were dating. We both knew it. We just didn’t talk about it. That would be considered rude.”

Preach it sister! But here’s the thing — I think the inability to be relaxed about dating is a really unfortunate result of the whole feminism movement of the 70s and 80s. Before militant women freak, let me explain:

Nowadays, women are free to be open-minded, open-mouthed and sexually adventurous without the same kind of social stigma once attributed to the fairer sex behaving herself naturally (as C.K. Dexter Haven might say). But — and maybe we screwed up somewhere or men have yet to catch up — I find that women aren’t being treated any better; they’re just being lied to more often to keep them from making informed decisions and exercising their independence.

Here’s an example: If statistics are to be believed, a large number of the male population lies about their fidelity in relationships and so it’s seems to be a very simple and — ahem — popular thing to do. Not really that interesting. Sort of the wannabe popular kid following the in-crowd. Keeping up with the Joneses so to speak. (Pretty forgetable behavior really…)

But how many women accept the excuses, turn their cheeks and pretend not to see? Feminism my ass. And the true brutality is, as William Golding and George Orwell both wrote of so eloquently, human nature dictates that people rely on external consequences to civilize them. So thanks faux feminists for being selfish enough to play into or ignore (depending on the situation and what you hope to gain) the baser male instincts. You’ll make savages of men yet, all the while standing on your podiums and listening to your vaginas speak.

(ed. note: this does not excuse those pitable men who are so attuned to their egos they’ll believe the tripe of the faux feminist. Yours is an unhappy road…)

“Aaah, that’s the old redhead. No bitterness, no recrimination, just a good swift left to the jaw.” ~C.K. Dexter Haven

Thought for the day:

“A trilobite can wear shiny shoes and call himself a shark; this neither makes him a shark nor changes the fact that he must crawl around in the mire to survive.” ~ Me

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I find myself interested in this today:

Projection: Projection is one of the defense mechanisms identified by Freud and still acknowledged today. According to Freud, projection is when someone is threatened by or afraid of their own impulses so they attribute these impulses to someone else. For example, a person in psychoanalysis may insist to the therapist that he knows the therapist wants to kill, when in fact the client has the urge to kill.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

“If you love all things, you will also attain the divine mystery that is in all things. For then your ability to perceive the truth will grow every day, and your mind will open itself to an all-embracing love”….. Fyodor Dostoyevsky

When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions
May wound you.
And when he speaks to you believe in him,
Though his voice may shatter your dreams
As the north wind lays waste the garden.
For even as love crowns you
So shall he crucify you.
Even as he is for your growth
So is he for your pruning.
Even as he ascends to your height and caresses
Your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun,
So shall he descend to your roots and
Shake them in their clinging to the earth.

The Prophet by Gibran Kahlil Gibran

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