Monday, April 26, 2010

I think they have these at Waffle House

This just in: In a strategy called “taste-aversion learning,” scientists in Australia are making little sausages of toad leg meat and a nausea-inducing compound in order to train wild carnivorous marsupials known as quolls to avoid attacking giant cane toads, invasive amphibians with large venom glands in their shoulders. I learned this from the BBC this morning. Did they add an extra Fool's Day to April this year without telling me? The longer I look at it, the more it seems that absurdity is like gravity or the speed of light – a fundamental property of the physical universe.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Watch out for unbearably cute baby animals

Just a heads up as you plan your activities for the week: Thursday is Earth Day. I intend to mark this event by remaining on or near the surface of the planet most of the time all day long. Also, I will participate in various promotional activities in my area, like I saw in the paper where Target will send you a reusable, Earth-friendly shopping bag when you mail five plastic Target bags in to them. Mail them. In an envelope that goes on a truck to travel across the country. Guess what color the bag they mail back is.

Monday, April 12, 2010

John Goodman is a local landmark.

There is this architectural stock footage shorthand the movies and TV use to indicate what city you're in. Chrysler Building means New York. Big Ben means London. And of course, the Taj Mahal means absolutely anywhere on the Indian subcontinent. So I want to give the new HBO series Treme credit. They stayed away from the stereotypical stuff everybody sees on their first trip to New Orleans, like Bourbon Street and the Cafe Du Monde. Instead, they dug deep to focus on brass bands, Indians, Vaughn's, Susan Spicer, WWOZ, and all the other stuff everybody discovers on their second trip.

Monday, April 5, 2010 maybe life isn't like a river?

You know the old joke about the resort, where one guest complains that the food is terrible? The other guest replies, “Yes, and the portions are so small.” Life's like that. Or like when you're at a party and it's not very fun and there's nothing to do but you stay and stay because you're just sure something will happen the moment you leave. At least maybe somebody will drink too much and humiliate themselves. Then you realize in one sad sick sinking rush that it's you. This world is a terrible place, and we have to leave so soon.