Monday, April 25, 2016
I was hearing about how some popular musicians are using their high visibility to inform and inspire their listeners around critical issues confronting our culture, our civilization, and our species. This is a powerful historical moment, potentially a game changer. There are precedents. Nobody who was alive in the early ‘70s can forget how Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra recorded “Song for Che,” thus bringing an end to American imperialism in the Western hemisphere. Oh, by the way, for all my readers who are corner office executives: Wednesday is Administrative Professionals’ Day. So tell your secretary to buy some flowers.
Monday, April 18, 2016
Why are we proud of stuff we can’t control? Maybe, like me, you’re tall and you feel good about that. Maybe you’re rich, or smart, or have nice shoes. Maybe a team in the town where you live is good at the game they play. It’s all just luck; should you take credit? What about kids? A couple told me their first grader was reading at a fifth grade level. I agreed that it was exciting and pointed out that if this kept up, by the time she was 40 she’d be reading as well as a 44 year old.
Monday, April 11, 2016
Poker is the game and they say take a seat. I say how about I just hand over my wallet and the last of my self-respect. I say I don’t gamble and the fella says what about craps isn’t that gambling and I say not the way I do it it ain’t. See, I was running a crap game and a guy shows up from Stockholm with a big gray donkey. And he says he hasn’t got a solitary dime but can he wager the animal. And I say – get this – I say, you bet your Swede ass you can.
Monday, March 28, 2016
Too many people spend way too much time searching for happiness when all they have to do is remember what it felt like to open a new box of 64 crayons. I can smell it now. You can take your meditation and your Caribbean cruises and throw them out the window; all you need is that box with the built-in sharpener and a fat stack of manila paper. And then, for some reason, the machines at the Crayola factory make way too many brown crayons. They melt them down and that’s where we get those really terrible chocolate Easter eggs.
Monday, March 21, 2016
I don’t actually rant much. There’s plenty of cranky guys with bushy eyebrows cracking wise about how peaches aren’t delicious anymore or what’s up with those little buns on bearded guys. That only works if deep down you have a heart of gold, which I don’t. The Ambrose Bierce trajectory, leading inevitably to a mysterious death whilst hanging out with Pancho Villa. Sure, I have my pet peeves, just like anybody. But they’re so prosaic. Like, who hasn’t wished there was black dental floss? Or wondered, when opening a new deck of cards, why they’re so stingy with the fours?
Monday, March 14, 2016
I know you have plenty to worry about already, and I’m not trying to scare you or anything. But did you ever think you might not be paranoid enough? Like if you’re taking a nature walk in one of our state or national parks and there’s a big map in a wooden frame. Here’s a red dot that says “you are here.” Aren’t they right every time? This is creepy because often you yourself have no idea where you are. And do you not find it suspicious that all of the events in your life are arranged in chronological order?
Monday, March 7, 2016
None of the campaigns are addressing the important issues that most of us care about. By most of us I of course mean me. And when I say campaigns, I mean consumer advertising. Car ads never mention the only meaningful differentiator between motor vehicles that are adequate and those that are utter pieces of crap: Can it fit an upright bass? Then there’s the TV commercials for medications which promise to enhance the experience of sitting in adjacent bathtubs. They should have special products which provide micro-doses. Here’s a product idea: Sylantro, for those who occasionally find themselves parsley erect.