Monday, February 26, 2007

Better In The Abstract

A gas well near Surabaya, Indonesia, has been spewing steaming mud since May 2006. The stuff has covered entire villages; 15,000 people are homeless after escaping the hot gray goop. The gas company is saying this vile glop would have come gushing up even had there been no drilling. Right. Meanwhile, engineers (doubtless emboldened by their colleagues' triumphant protection of New Orleans) are planning to stop the mud flow by dropping large cement balls down this big hole in the Earth. Geologists are predicting this just plain won't work. Anyway, it's hard to imagine a more concrete metaphor for hubris.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Quite The Wag

This guy called me, said he and his wife just got a puppy. I said, “Great. Now you'll know what to do first thing every morning for the next 15 years.” And he said, “Yeah. It's kind of like a kid.” But, no it ain't. Kids get smarter. A dog, he's 6 months old, that's all the smarter he's going to get. Take my dog: I've walked him twice every day for over 10 years. Yet he still doesn't make any connection between the sound of his name called sharply three or four times and that subsequent unpleasant strangling sensation.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Wilde Life Refuge

Held together, near as I can tell, by some kind of sequin-encrusted industrial strength duct tape, Carol Channing came to town to do a benefit. She made the cover of an inside section of the local paper, and I was stunned – stunned, I tell you – to note that she really looks exactly the same as she did some forty odd years ago. She's 86, and she hasn't changed at all. She's probably got one of those Dorian Gray things going on. But instead of a picture in the attic that keeps looking worse and worse, she's got Mickey Rourke.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Indulge Me Here

When you compare them to their peers living a sedentary lifestyle, people who stay active- participating in organized sports, regular cardiovascular exercise or even such simple measures as a daily walk- live a few measly years longer. It serves them right. All those folks who go to great lengths to increase their life span seem to lose sight of a simple irrefutable fact: The chunk of additional life you buy yourself by avoiding tobacco, alcohol, fatty foods, and illegal drugs begins after you would have died. Any extra hours you manage to add will get tagged onto the very end.