Monday, May 31, 2010

still spewing

It doesn't matter if we say we never buy junk food. The stuff keeps flying off the shelves and down our bottomless gullets, and that's the only opinion that counts. The marketing racket calls that the shopping cart vote. So, who doesn't like a climate controlled house, a comfy commute, plus healthy returns on their 401k? That's yummy as a poptart. Getting all those things at the same time requires willing complicity with mentally deficient delusional greedheads. Now hop in the car -- we're driving down to the protest march to yell at BP for doing what we voted for.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Already nostalgic for tats and soul patches

We've almost plowed through the first decade of the 21st century and still don't have consensus on what to call it. The two-thousands sounds way too Mr. Wizard: “Radiotelegraphs from Pluto! Dirigible service from Siam to Rhodesia! Who knows what other wonders the two-thousands may bring?” The aughts only works if you're a coot and/or geezer: “Yep, I 'member back in aught-three, I wuz ridin' with ol' Stinky Liederkranz...” My modest proposal – why not just call it the First Decade? It works great as a noun or adjective. Sample sentence: “Dude, that stubble 'n' fedora look is totally First Decade.”

Monday, May 17, 2010

100 word requiem

Around the world
From Rome to Rio
We mourn the loss of Ronnie James Dio.

There's no more joy,
There's no more glee-o
There's no more, no more, Ronnie James Dio

We ask ourselves
How can this be-o?
Goodbye goodbye to Ronnie James Dio

He replaced Ozzie
But who'll replace he-o?
There's no-one now like Ronnie James Dio

He sang con fuoco
He sang con brio
He sang with Rainbow, Ronnie James Dio

We weep now 'neath the old oak tree-o
The voice that rang from sea-to-sea-o
Is silent now, his soul is free-o
Ronnie James Dio
Ronnie James Dio

Monday, May 10, 2010

Wild thing, you make my heart sing.

Somewhere between one and four percent – that's how far short of being fully human most of us are. It seems that when the first humans came out of Africa they enjoyed cordial relations with some of their Neanderthal cousins, with the result that the only folks around who can claim to be entirely free of caveman DNA are certain Sub-Saharan Africans. Ordinary white people everywhere can rejoice at this little troglodytic tang in an otherwise vanilla gene pool. I welcome this addition to my messy Mischling heritage, especially if it means I can take off another set of holidays.

Monday, May 3, 2010

It's like, deep down inside, I'm nine.

At first glance, Esther Duflo and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab sounds like a plastic playset with action figure included. Or a musical group that collaborated with Henry Threadgill for that one album. But no. Esther Duflo is a MacArthur genius grant winning economist who uses statistical tools to quantify the effects of microeconomic variables vis-a-vis poverty in the developing world. And the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab is an academic center at MIT focused on applying controlled research methodologies to socioeconomics. Nothing funny there. I singled them out for cheap laughs based solely on their names.