Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Attempt at the Quasicanonical.

With sports all in the air (NBA playoffs, Champion's League
Final, ginsoaked horseshoes on 10th Street...) it has come to
me, as if in a sublime sugary vision, that it is necessary for
a new class of shittalk. Allow me to enter into the vernacular,
unless it has already been done and erupted inadvertantly
from the cobwebbed recesses of my sleeping mind, my


This seems a great candidate for the new "money."

To avoid any confusion with the Dr. Scholl's product, I suggest
expansion of Jelly into all fruit-based condiments as a way of
letting your competitor know that you have bested him. For

If Chauncey Billups drops an unbelievable dime on the Lakers
tonight, as no doubt he will a few times over, he could shout

Say Wayne Rooney puts one past the Barcelona keeper this
Mar-me-lade, bitch!

Or Rashard Lewis comes up with another clutch three?

If he passes it to Hedo?
Elma Jolesi, bayanlar baylar.

If Hedo wants to take it in a new direction?

Endless possibilities. Think it over, sporting types.

Monday, April 27, 2009

...Or, maybe it is because your shows court the terminally stupid.

Great piece here, at least the results. CNN is having a tough
time with ratings. They, and presumably the Times, think this
is because they were going for a "straight news, middle of the road"
approach, as opposed to the nonsense at Fox and the somehow, in
the eyes of many Americans and certainly the majority of our media,
equivalent reporting and commentary at MSNBC.

Side note: This is probably the most pernicious form of idiocy
in the American media. Everything has to have two sides. It doesn't
matter too much which side is truthful. There's a left and a right.
It is odd how things can be so Manichean in a country whose
political spectrum is represented by a center right party and and
extremist right party. Anyway, after years of the American media
ignoring evidence, not bothering, or being co-conspirators with the
criminal enterprise bleeding the country, MSNBC put a guy on the
air who pointed out facts obvious to the literate (here I don't mean
intellectual, I mean people who can read and write at a fifth grade
level) faction of our sad society years prior. "Wow," the news media
said, "this guy is waaaay left. He's like Hannity."

Well, no. Hannity is an empty suit. A blowhard. A dipshit. His
program relies on childish ideology and prevarication. A simple
fact check would put this all to rest. This isn't to say that Olbermann
never games what he's got in order to drive at someone. He doesn't,
however, just make things up. Olbermann is more of a moderate,
really, until the string of lies and felonies got so open and egregious,
until the collective intellect of the American public got so battered
that we were mere minutes away from "GO AWAY, 'BATIN!" until
we came to a point where there was actually a debate about
whether or not to torture and violate international law and common
decency (not much of a debate, as it turns out) that he saw his Murrow
moment. Luckily for Mr. Olbermann, we are still in deep shit, and
most of the media are handmaidens to the ruling class. We are still
imbeciles. He'll have a long career just by going on the television
saying "Are you fucking kidding me?" in a different tone of voice than
Messrs Colbert and Stewart.

Okay. Back to CNN. Could it be that CNN is tanking in the ratings
because any half-serious person finds their coverage laughable? It
really is news at somewhere around the cretin IQ level. Have the writers
of this article watched Don Lemon? He makes Anderson Cooper look
like Sherwood Anderson. A person is, to borrow from Billy Madison,
dumber for having listened to him.

Possibly they could cover a bit of news in-between Mexican bashing
and latest developments on any abducted white girl. Just a suggestion.

Not that NBC is ideal. How a monkeyfaced halfwit like Gregory
could be trusted with the house Russert built is far beyond my

So, here's some free advice for CNN executives: Model yourselves
after the CBC. Report actual news. It doesn't need to be somewhere
in the gray area between Hannity and Olbermann ideologically. This
is why CNN is less trustworthy than MSNBC (one would have to go
a series of surrealist country miles to manage being less trustworthy
than Fox) and will continue to be so. You can't stand in the middle of
facts and lies and seek the truth. The truth is what it is, and it doesn't
matter if the person saying it is Castro, Chavez, Netanyahu or Clinton.
If Barney Frank says it is raining and James Inhofe says that there's
no way to prove it try standing outside. When Anderson Cooper's
hair gets mussed a bit, tell us what the strange wet substance is.
Don't do a three part story on the debate of the existence of rain.

America is not polarized in the way we're being told. There is a
polarization between those of us in the evidence based community
and the ideologues who will work tirelessly to fit square pegs into
round holes. I will avoid a John Mayer joke now. Okay. It has passed.
Try being information dense instead of just being dense. Seriously,
the CBC is a great model.

You might have to travel to Canada to see it. For some reason, it isn't
available through existing satellite and cable providers. Wonder why
that could be...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Saramago's blog.

I don't know how it took me so long to find this out, but
José Saramago has a blog. (Linked in the title of this entry.)
Downside to it being my foolish decision to opt for German
as my second language years ago, because it is available in
Portugese (which wasn't really an option for me, so I'll let
myself slide) and Spanish (which would've been a bit more
useful, but what can you do?) which every American should
have a working knowledge of, beyond my current capacity, which
is knowing how to get beer, cigarettes, matches and meals and
little else.

Twice as irksome is that the entries are timely. His latest entry
is on El Salvador. Running it through an autotranslation program
is pretty useful. One can read around the inborn vicissitudes of
such a thing and get at the meat, if not the marrow.

I am wont to ruminate on good ole José, who becomes more of
an influence with every passing month. His beauty is his existence
in-between existences, his prose veering betwixt epic and plainspoken,
his characters occupying the terra while straddling some subatomic
plane (or Plain? both, I think) that becomes more real than the
seemingly physical world they find themselves thrust back into,
his "dialogue" or, in this case, Dialogue, at times mystical and
common. If there is a more important living author, I'd be keen on
getting whatever s/he has composed.

It doesn't hurt that his politics are as in line with my own as any
thinker I've been made aware of, and that his background is one
I can relate to, inasmuch as an American in his early (early, I tell
you!) thirties can to a Portugese man in his late eighties. In lieu of
language acquisition, I'll be copying and pasting to autotranslate.


In unrelated, sad news, Nicholas Hughes has committed suicide
in Alaska. His life, of course, was his own, and it is somewhat jarring
to see the headlines of "Sylvia's son," which set a backdrop to
a host of complications none of us can imagine, but it is natural
if discourteous to see this as yet another horrific footnote in an
ongoing tale of woe. Incredibly sad stuff.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Iliad Agonistes

What does a fool do with an unseasonably warm
February day? He begins his quixotic expedition into
the translated Homer. Now, when granted an even
warmer day with nothing on his plate, what would
this recalcitrant masochist set up for his entertainment?
Repeating last week's headache.

Here's the issue, and one I have yet to solve:
Pope, Chapman, Lattimore or Logue? Obviously Chapman
or Pope, at first glance; yet, when considering the Iliad and
Odyssey as a topic of study, Lattimore's versions have
much to compliment, if only as complement. Tuesday
last, I nearly had a breakdown looking at three copies
of the Iliad strewn about the living room floor. Thank God
for Harold Bloom, whose "Where Shall Wisdom Be Found"
served as a much needed slump buster. There's always
"Trolius and Cressida."

There are worse problems to have.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Because "An Escalade! An Escalade! My Kingdom for an Escalade!" just sounds stupid.

Hello, ether. How have you been?

After a fairly long stint of a quite nonpoetic existence,
it seems the orchestra is tuning its instruments
in the pit.

It seems I never really caught on to the blogging
thing. Shame. I thought this was where unpublish
(ed)(able) essays got thrown into a subatomic world.
More of an insipid collection of half worked out thoughts
thrown up at a regular interval.

Well, this post aside, I think I might stick to irregular
essays on renegade spondees, if you don't mind.