Sunday, November 30, 2008

Post number 211, in which I go from Point A to Point B

Point A: Anton Chekhov's The Student.

* * *

I was driving down to Lee's Summit on I-70 and I came to my favorite part of the trip where this huge valley just opens up out of nowhere. Whenever I drive into that hollow, I look to the crest of the next hill and think to myself, "that is where I am gonna be in about a minute," and then I try to remember to notice when I get there. Usually I forget. Like when you are pumping gas and you say to yourself, "make sure you pay attention as you screw the gas cap on, because otherwise you won't be able to remember if you did it or not." But this time I remembered, and it was cool.

* * *

My grandpa told me something a friend of his had said about music. This friend said that musical sounds are only there for an instant, then they're gone. If they were random and unconnected, you'd not remember them, and not be able to predict them, and it wouldn't be music as you know it. But if each tiny instant has some connection to the one before and the one after, we can entrain ourselves to this string of instants and share in a way of experiencing time. My grandpa then defined music as a way of connecting sound and silence in time.

* * *

My uncle was talking about the pilgrims and how they believed in predetermination as far as who was getting into heaven. But their version of fate had this weird twist where earthly behavior, though it could not have any bearing on one's future after death, could reliably be taken as a reflection of that future. So if you go to church and live a pious life, it must be because you are one of those chosen few to begin with.

* * *

My grandpa told me about how amazed he is that the earth is in just the right place to sustain life. Not too hot, not too cold, enough water, and a good atmosphere. I told him I agreed, sort of, but also that the very basis of our conversation was the life that earth makes possible. The odds seem low, that is, but who could talk about those odds but us lucky few who are on a planet in which atoms can combine into people and not just rocks?

* * *

Point B: Italo Calvino's Cosmicomics.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Shitty Food for Shitty People, Episode 12: APBizza

APB: Avocado, Pepperoni, and Banana. I should tell you right now: this isn't very good.

  • Turn on your oven
  • Smoosh up an avocado and a banana in a bowl with some salt and lime juice, like you were gonna make some kind of gross-ass banana guacamole or maybe like some real weird baby food or something.
  • Take all the imitation pepperoni off a Tombstone pepperoni pizza and stack it up and cut it into smaller bits (I bet it would be even better if you used bacon instead though, maybe then it would push it over the edge of actually being pleasant)
  • Stir those in with the gross banana and avocado paste
  • Put that shit all on top of the pizza
  • Try to hide the shame by grating some more cheese over top, like say some Swiss and some Cheddar or something like that.
  • Bake it and eat some of it (you will probably get sick of it after you get 2/3 done, and then you should just probably throw the rest away, because, I mean, are you really gonna eat that? I mean, it isn't very good.)
See though, dear reader, I fucking hate bananas. I know they are so good for me so I make myself eat them, but they are disgusting and awful. So here was a way to trick me into eating them by mixing them with things I love. Because why should my nutritional decisions be based on Taste? Fuck Taste. Taste is boring and predictable. I propose the following alternatives to the outmoded idea of Taste as a decision-making tool vis-à-vis what you're gonna eat:
  • Will I vomit?
  • If so, how much?
  • Is it cheap?
  • Is it funny?
  • Can I make a blog entry out of it?
  • Will it take long enough to fill up the time I am trying to waste?
  • And what of its nutritional value?
  • Will it make me feel good about myself?
  • What's it look like?
  • How long will it make me not have to eat again for?
  • Does it have a name that sounds cool?
  • How fast can I eat it, in case I have to eat it really fast to get full before I fully realize it is disgusting?
  • Is it biodegradable?
  • Do I gotta worry about what happens on the other end of the ol' GI tract?
  • Later on in the next day or two can I eat something that actually tastes good?
  • What color is it?
  • What time is it?
  • Seriously?
  • Fuck, gotta go, bye.

Two (2) revelations about the future

1. In the future, it is no longer up to you whether what you've just said is or isn't a joke.

2. The future is now.

Corollary 1-9A: We don't have to think stuff like Shakespeare comedies or 'I Love Lucy' are funny now. It's ok not to laugh.

Corollary 12: This kid made the funniest joke, and he didn't even know it.

Monday, November 24, 2008


This is a thing we invented Saturday where you sneak up behind someone and spoon them and hopefully snap a picture too. Then they have been spwned.* But have they have become "the littlest spoon?" This is a matter of some dispute.

Also, there is a secret way of giving five where you make your hands spoon.

Spwnman. Cum 2gether w yr hanzz.

Figure 12: Spwned

Figure 12b:Spwned.?.

Figure 12c: 5PWN3D!!!!11

* The internet claims that "spwn" is some kind of video game thing, but I'm pretty sure we have made that meaning obsolete.

Do you love me?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Laffy Taffy

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Whachu readin' on?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Skelly remembers...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dear would-be guacamole makers who don't have any lemon or lime juice but DO have some frozen lemonade concentrate,

Listen: I had an avocado, and some chips, so naturally I figured I'd make me a little guac. Now I know everybody's got a way to make it, but for me it is mainly a matter of avocados and salt. Sure, if I have some garlic I'll put that in there, some cilantro or some sour cream or even some tomatoes or onions or something. But I had none of that on hand. The one thing I thought I did have was some lemon or lime juice, which I like for guacamole, because it makes it not turn brown so fast (I think maybe this has to do with.. science...?). This is where my terrible mistake happened. I had no lemon juice, but I had a little lemonade concentrate in the freezer (you know, to make lemonade with). I thought, sure, it's sweet, but it also has lemon juice, right? So if I just use a little it won't be so bad?

Fuckin' WRONG, my friends. That shit tasted like lemon cupcakes. It was so gross, even my pride (which makes me eat just the most awful shit if I'm the one who cooked it) made it so I could only dip like four chips in there and tell myself it wasn't that bad before myself was like, it IS that bad, and I just threw that bullshit away.


Matty Lite

Monday, November 10, 2008

An old man's possessions are cut in half

Thursday, November 06, 2008

I had the following revelation

Just out of nowhere it popped into my head: Kermit the frog must have been riding fixed gear in that scene in the first Muppet Movie where he's biking through the park (damn you youtube for not having it). That way the pedals would keep going and his feet would go up and down with them, so it would look like he was pedalling, even though he is not an alive animal but a puppet.

Figure 12: This bike is unusual

Of course this is the internet and so like 1000 people have already had this same revelation.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Us and Them and Him and Here and There

Well I am no political expert, you know, but I noticed this thing about Obama's acceptance speech that I thought was interesting. It seemed like his speech had kind of two climactic moments, both of which were encapsulated in a three-word phrase. About halfway through it was "we'll get there," and then at the end it was "yes we can."

"We'll get there" is my favorite. First off, we never know quite exactly where "there" is. So that's kind of nice, because it involves the listener in inventing their own there. Also, it is such a flexible phrase, to be found in exasperation by some parents to some kids in the back seat, in the desperate promise of a repentant lover, reassuringly from teacher to baffled student, in resignation by the leader of a slow-moving group, or even sidesteppingly by a slacker who would rather defer blame for a later day than face it head on.

"Yes we can" is similar in its vagueness and its catch-all quality: the go-to retort to "No you can't," the simple proclamation of simple entitlement, the mantra of the little engine that could and I'd imagine the hope-against-hope mantra of plenty of little engines that couldn't, the gambit of the motivational speaker, even the rallying cry of the willfully apathetic.

I like to imagine a Venn diagram for who the "we" (and its compadre the "they") is in both of these phrases. The way Obama talks makes the "we" region comparatively huge, and the election results are evidence enough that the majority of voting Americans reside there in "we"-land. But then I think maybe the most clever line of the speech puts a bigger bubble around "we" and "they": "And for those who did not vote for me I will still be your president." First off, this change of voice turns the grammatical subjects "we" and "they" into the political subjects "us" and "them" (grammatically, Obama becomes the subject, his 'subjects' become the object). Then by subsuming both under the presidency, Obama is able to say at the same time 'I will still listen to you,' but also 'you better do what I say because I'm the motherfuckin' president and I'm takin' ya there like it or not!' Boo-ya!

Figure 12: Some Political Topology

Soundtrack for this post generously provided by:

Monday, November 03, 2008

There's no accountin' for taste

Saturday, November 01, 2008

They probably should have coordinated on this.