"You can do anything, but lay off of my blue suede shoes" --Carl Perkins

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Round and Round it Goes

Well I swan! Evidently the party never ends around here, sportsfans. Sarcastro has tagged me with a book meme, and I’m finally getting around to passing this potato. Chin Chin!


[1] Name 5 of your favorite books


1. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig - If it’s ‘Quality’ you want, then it’s ‘Quality’ you shall have – all wrapped up in a handy dandy travel story, or ‘Chautauqua’, if you will.


2. The Dharma Bums by Kerouac - A polite fuck-you, Mr. Elliott, sir. For Jack’s life will not be measured out with coffee spoons. Nay! Let it be measured with empty port bottles, and wild naked roarings, and Diamond Sutra chantings and Diamond Sutra rantings. Rantings, chantings, and climbings. Chanting like madmen all the way down, down the downy mountainside.


3. The Illuminatus Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson - The guiltiest of sick pleasures I’ve found. Oh sure fnord, Wilson is a Pynchon wannabe. fnord But aren’t we all? What Wilson gets is fnord the sickness. He taps into fnord the psychotic feeming tantrum of our spiritual quest fnord. He understands the paranoia fnord, and dishes it out to us fnord with musky gusto. Whenever I need a fnord good head-fucking wake-up-call fnord, I always reach for my IT. *Warning* do not attempt to seduce Discordia without the proper tools: psychotropics, monkey fur saddles, and/or pink alluvian fungi. fnord


4. Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco - Conspiracy is afoot, and what else does one do about it? Why, join the Masons, of course. Well, it’s what I did. Yes, this is the book that convinced me that I needed to look into a few things for myself. Unfortunately, the book was infinately more intriguing than what I would later find for myself. To me the best books are gateways to hidden worlds. This one is chock-a-block full of them.


5. Siddartha by Hemann Hesse – Sublime.


[2] What was the last book you bought?


· Mary Shelly’s: Frankenstein – ‘A little research now and then is cherished by the wisest men’…


[3] What was the last book you read?


· Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins – Have a hearty belly-laugh at the mandacity of death (and life), mortals. Laugh with me, and enjoy a beet or two, right along to the beat of each footfall in time… Great God Pan! Why the hell haven’t I read any Robbins before now!?!


[4] Name five books that have particular meaning for you.


1. Elric of Melnibone by Michael Moorcock – Actually, this entire series is what put me onto books. I read this entire series on a family camping/road trip from Birmingham to Yellowstone and back in the summer between my sixth and seventh grades. I highly recommend a steady thundering of early eighties death metal maddness as background acompanyment – most especially Iron Maiden’s Powerslave. Oh sure, I read plenty of other books before this one: here a little CS Lewis, there a Lloyd Alexander, yes even some Tolkein, but they were the recommended books, the books to read from the school library list. Elric was my first ‘real’ book. The book that I picked out for myself. …and I haven’t been the same since.


2. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance - Got Gumption? Get it! Well, I dare say, it helped me.


3. Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison by Michel Foucault - Because you can’t handle the truth. Yes, because it will always be constructed via the discourse with which you approach it, silly rabbit.


4. Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse - Somehow, it helps to know that there has been another freak out there just like me. Hesse gets me. He really gets me.


5. Thus Spoke Zarathustra : A Book for Everyone and Nobody by Friedrich Nietzsche - The Superman be praised! I am eternal recurrance. I am. All men. All women. amen.


[5] Three books you are dying to read but just haven't yet.


1. If on a winter’s night a traveler by Italo Calvino – Aunt B. recommended this to me, and I went out the very next day and bought it. Unfortunately, I was working on a couple of other books at the time. Soon, very soon.


2. Cloud Atlas: A Novel by David Mitchell – I started reading this last year and got sidetracked. I’ve got to get back to it. Mitchell is a historical chameleon. He is able, like no other author I’ve read, to time warp on a dime, and totally sans anachronysm. Genius. Oh, for more time.


3. The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell – I’ve been wanting to read this for years. It’s one of those books that is always at the back of your mind when you walk into a bookstore. I can never remember to remember it.


[6] Tag five people to go through this same ordeal.

  1. Jon
  2. The Knucklehead
  3. Newscoma
  4. Saraclark (yes. I'm picking on you)
  5. TheoGeo (because I can't bear to lose you, Memphis)

Monday, February 20, 2006

Break The Chain And Burn In Hell

Golly. Thanks, Aunt B, for the tag. Lord knows, I needed some more fodder to feed the Huck History Month monkey.

Here's how it works:
Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot. (1) (insert name here) (2) Hits from 'da Blog (3) Rex L. (4) Aunt B (5) Huck.

Next, select 5 people to tag.
Here are mine:
Jon, Mephistophocles, Saraclark, Mack, and the Nashville Knucklehead.


What were you doing 10 years ago? I was saving up to get married in the fall by working the most miserable job I can imagine – a lab technician in an animal testing research facility. I was also trying to finish college part-time.

What were you doing 1 year ago? Struggling to get settled in Nashville - Looking for a new house, starting a new job, etc…

Five snacks you enjoy:
• my Grandmama’s fried apple pies
• cornbread in a glass of milk
• Pickled okra
• Boiled peanuts
• beer

Five songs to which you know all the lyrics:
• Sweet Baby James
• Boulder to Birmingham
• The Gambler
• Me and my Bobbie McGee
• Sweet Home Alabama

Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:
• Quit! …and then…
• I’d read.
• I’d write.
• I’d fish.
• I’d open a Barbecue and Blues Brewpub.

Five bad habits:
• I drink too much.
• I procrastinate.
• I’ve got a bad habit of getting distracted by something else and dropping what I’m doing before it’s… Hey! Cool. There’s that book…
• Hitting the snooze bar.
• Blogging while at work.

Five things you like doing:
• Fly fishing/tying flies
• Reading
• Writing
• Cooking
• Running

Five things you would never wear again:
• Tyvec suit, respirator, goggles
• parachute pants
• a tie
• a tux
• a condom

Five favorite toys:
• my kayak
• my flyrod
• my fly vise
• my banjo
• my electric guitar

Friday, February 17, 2006

Where Do We Draw the Line?

Riddle me this, free market capitalists. What do you do when a drug company, which has recently developed the closest thing to a cure for cancer, has decided to charge more than the average salary a physician makes annually for only one treatment with the stuff?

The pharmaceutical company Genentech believes it should be able to charge $100,000 a pop for it’s revolutionary drug, Avastin, just because they know that people, when struggling for their lives, will pay anything for it.

Is this an example of good fiscal libertarian values at work? What if I told you that much of the research cost for the drug was funded with American taxpayer dollars? In fact, on average 44% of all medical research costs in this country are funded by taxpayer dollars. Shouldn’t we have some say in how much these companies are charging for these drugs?


Interested?
Here. Have a listen.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Our Dear Aunt B. Needs Our Help, Kids



That's right kids. Our dear Auntie B, the woman who has always come through for us in the past, is in a really big need of a really big blogger hug right now.

So c'mon, gang! Don't be shy. I know you can do it! Whatcha Say!?!

OK... Here goes... Everybody together now... Yes, even you in the back, little Kleinheider.


Let's do this!!!


I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!

That's the spirit, Gang!

I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!

Shout it like you mean it!

I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!

Give it all ya got!

I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!

That's the way to show your spirit, Krumm!

I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!

One more time!

I DO BELIEVE IN AUNT B! I DO! I DO!


Great job everyone. Give yourselves all a great big pat on the back for effort. Yay...



Ok. You can leave now, Mr. President. We're done.

No, no. The other door.

V for Vendetta or Bust!

As you probably have already heard, V for Vendetta will soon be coming to a theater near you - March 17th to be exact. I personally, can't stop singing the 'Happy Happy Joy Joy' song.

For those of you who don't already know anything about it, this film is based on my favorite graphic novel of the same name, written by the bard of the genre himself, Alan Moore. Anyway, you want more info, go here for a decent review.

Yes, I know. Kick Ass! Right? Yet another reason for us all to wish Huck History Month was already... well, um... history.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The Steppenwolf

In keeping with the all-about-ME spirit of Huck History Month, I’ve decided to let you all in on one of my most intimate aspects: my personality.

INFPs are flexible and laid-back, until one of their values is violated. In the face of their value system being threatened, INFPs can become aggressive defenders, fighting passionately for their cause. When an INFP has adopted a project or job which they're interested in, it usually becomes a "cause" for them. Although they are not detail-oriented individuals, they will cover every possible detail with determination and vigor when working for their "cause".

Damn you Jung, and damn you Myers and Briggs. To think that the magic of all that is ‘Huck’ can be reduced to four cold little letters.

Here. Why should I be the only miserable specimen on the grid? Go ahead. Quantify yourselves.



*update*
I like this description better. Finally, right? I'm sure you were waiting with baited breath for it.


...I'm starting to really hate Huck History Month...

Monday, February 06, 2006

Get To Know Me!

It is not my intention to show any disrespect to Black History Month, but a certain B. has convinced me to buzz a little about my self for a while. So, for the remainder of the month of February I have decided to share with you, Nashville, a random sampling of morsels about my most favorite of topics: little ol' ME.

Welcome to Huck History Month, Nashville!

Please, Enjoy!


The First Annual
HUCK HISTORY QUIZ

1. Huck belongs to or has belonged to which of the following organizations:*
a. Girl scouts
b. al qaida
c. Shriners
d. Masons
e. Greenpeace
f. NORML
g. All but a and b


2. Which of the following is something his cousin has done?*
a. He has blown himself up with a homemade bomb, and was hospitalized for a week
b. He lived and traveled with the Rainbow Family
c. He pulled a gun on Huck, Dr. Gonzo style, in the middle of an LSD freakout
d. He shot himself in the thigh, and was hospitalized for a week
e. He was once bitten by a coral snake, and was hospitalized for a week
f. He has blown himself up twice with homemade bombs, and was hospitalized for a week each time
g. All of the above


3. Which sport has Huck broken bones while playing?
a. Football
b. Rugby
c. Running from cars of which he has flicked-off
d. Weight Lifting
e. Chasing after his best friend, after Huck’s girlfriend looked up from Huck’s naughty bits and saw the best friend in the window
f. Running from cars of which he has mooned
g. All of the above


4. Huck has tried which of the following denominations:
a. Methodist
b. Baptist
c. Catholic
d. Unitarian
e. Presbyterian
f. Episcopalian
g. All of the above


5. Huck has tried which of the following religions:
a. Christianity
b. Gnosticism
c. Buddhism
d. Satanism
e. Scientology
f. Alcoholism
g. All but d and e


6. Which of Huck’s dogs was poisoned by an asshole?
a. Crockett, the good buddy beagle
b. Dixie, the motherly labrador
c. Annie, the psychotic wonder mutt
d. Cosmo, the clownish boston terrier
e. Socrates
f. Cleopatra
g. Wabash, the best dog in the universe


7. Huck has worked on which of the following jobs:
a. As a Computer Programmer at …
b. As a Plumber’s Assistant at a publishers printing facility
c. As a Lab Technician in an animal testing facility
d. As a Pharmacy Technician for a hospital and for a retail chain
e. As a telephone solicitor for the State Trooper’s Association
f. As a vegan terrorist
g. All but f


8. Huck has been which of the following at some point in his life:
a. A triathlete
b. A marathon runner
c. A banjo picker
d. A beer brewer
e. A pot-smokin’-hippie
f. A redneck
g. All of the above


9. Huck has attended which of the following schools:
a. High School
b. College
c. Grad School
d. Culinary School
e. DUI School
f. Another College
g. All of the above (but he only completed 3 of them)


10. Which term most closely describes Huck's political belief system:
a. Left Libertarian
b. Democrat
c. Classic Liberal
d. Anarchist
e. Centrist
f. Paleoliberal
g. He still hasn't found that label

If you answered (g) for the majority of the questions, then you need to put the phone down now, Mr. President. You already know too much about Mr. Huck.





*compliments of this lady.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

So, I'm Leaving The Office Last Night And...

...something out of the ordinary drifts across the sidewalk in front of me. Looks like cash, by God! I looked around to see if anyone had dropped it, and there was nobody. So, I picked it up. Holy shit! It's a twenty...

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

What Have We Done?

Can you hear that sound? Some of you can while others with deafened ears still can’t. Unfortunately, the deafness is growing. For those of you who can’t hear it or rather refuse to, please allow me to fill you in. That sound you won’t hear is the din of coat hangers being sharpened; the sound of opportunist quacks everywhere dusting off their mail-order certificates. They’re salivating in their back alleys waiting for our daughters.

I know, I know, “Give me a break. Cut the dramatics.”, right?

Possibly. It’s possible that I’m overreacting to Alito’s appointment to the Supreme Court, and to the probable overturning of Roe v Wade. It is possible. But there is something else happening, which makes this appointment all the more tragic. There is a change in the air. The stigma is coming back, and it is growing.

You see, I’m hearing the argument that even if RvW is overturned, and the right to an abortion is given back to the decision of the states, and that even if Red States choose to deny the right, then there will be Blue States which will still allow it. Ok. Granted. This makes sense, if you stop right there. But, take it further. What happens to the overall social consensus on abortion? There has always been a stigma. What happens to that stigma when the majority of the states in the US decide to ban abortions? That stigma grows and it spreads. It spreads throughout the households of the Red States and deep into the households of the Blue States.

“So, big freakin’ deal”, you say. “That’s good news. That means less ‘babies’ being slaughtered”.

Wrong.

That means that the unborn fetuses of the women, who seek abortion, will be aborted more and more frequently by unlicensed shysters. In Red States it will happen overnight with each signing of a new law. In Blue States the doors may remain open, but the legitimate business will wane, as more and more covert business open their dens.

I happen to be very well acquainted with three examples of how this will occur. How well acquainted? I am related to all three: my aunt, my great aunt, and my first cousin, two of who had their abortions performed by unlicensed quacks, regardless of it’s legality at the time. The other, my cousin, had hers legally, but never told anyone about it until very recently. She contends, that at that age and under the stress of her circumstances, she would have had it done by any means available, legal or otherwise.

My great aunt had hers performed illegally in the 1960’s, when her mother drove her out of state, under the guise of a mother and daughter retreat. The mother carried the secret with her to her grave. The daughter, my great aunt, finally revealed the episode to her family when she found out she was dying of cancer.

My immediate aunt had her abortion performed legally; post RvW, but before licensed clinics had made their way into small-town Alabama. She, however, didn’t fair as fortunate as the other two had with theirs. Thanks to the benefits of unlicensed quackery, she became septic shortly after the procedure, and was soon struggling for her life inside a Birmingham hospital. Thankfully she survived, but the damage caused to her reproductive organs was irreversible, and although wiser and more responsible later in life, she was never able to have children.

These women were not sluts, but they did make mistakes. They didn’t make it a practice of sleeping around with everyone in town, they were once young and foolish, and because of their foolishness tried to rectify their mistakes by any means necessary. All people are young and foolish at some point. All people will make mistakes. People will not stop making these mistakes and they will always find (if they can’t find the most socially acceptable means) the most anonymous means of rectifying them, no matter what the risk.

By overturning Roe vs Wade we will not be solving the problem.

We will, instead, be perpetuating a stigma. A stigma, which will only serve to endanger and destroy the lives of those people who will make mistakes, regardless of any change in law.