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Life and Times of an itinerant slacker in Sacramento. Thrills, Spills Galore coming soon. Not to mention lots of opinions.

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Monday, May 31, 2010

Possibly my Favorite Cartoon Ever

The Abominable Snowman and his new pet bunny rabbit. We loved this when we were kids.

"I'll call him George."

Arthur, our male cat, is the real George. I hug him and squeeze him and pet him. He demands it.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

More Dalhi Lama Jokes

I'm sure almost everyone has heard the standard Dalhi Lama and the New York hotdog cart guy joke.

Dalhi Lama (DL): "Make me one with everything"

DL: Hey, where's my change?

Hotdog vendor: Change comes from within.

Thanks to a recent surreal oped in the New York Times, we can let that tired old joke retire.

John Kenney's op ed records a short conversation from a night barhopping with His Holiness. It is absurd and kind if fun.

Some sample dialogue:

“What does a guy have to do to get a beer around here?” he said, more under his breath than to anyone in particular. Then he started laughing. “Patience, right? Let’s live in this moment. It’s just that it would be a better moment if we had beer.” Then he started laughing again. "

Short and strange and I liked it.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Oil Spilling - Boom Goes the Boom

Our friend Dennis, sent me a link to this video. (Note language in the video is NSFW)

The video starts with a rather dull two minutes of recapping the history of British Petroleum's mess in the Gulf of Mexico, but gets interesting and entertaining after that. It's a six minute documentary about booms, narrated by someone experienced in the industry, and peppered with colorful local language presumably from platform-land out there.

Don't fade during the opening two minutes. This is fun and interesting, although not encouraging.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

What's All This About Marriage Laws?

This is what it's about.

That's their story, but I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

My Band is "Still Blowing Strong", Reports Local papers

The Sacramento Concert band's 40th Anniversary concert made the news!

Susan Skinner, a local big band torch singer, published biographer of Princess Diana, New Zealand native, and band booster through and through wrote what I can honestly describe as a positively sparkling article about our concert. You can see it in the Carmichael Times under the headline, "Still Blowing Strong".

Trust me that this short article is worth reading. I'll give you just two sentences so you can savor its irresistible appeal;

"The birthday program rang the changes precisely as percussion
bells. Director Grant Parker’s baton swung seamlessly from Bach to Copeland."

I hope Bach and Copeland didn't sustain any permanent head injuries.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

At the Corner of Steampunk and Star Trek

Coming to a galaxy near you.

This is from a series of "fixed" taxidermy specimens created by New Zealand artist Lisa Black. Her work is both awesome and disturbing.

Her fixed baby crocodile makes another bold statement about man's relationship with our natural world or something or other.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

The Perfect Man Toy . ..Packers and Trains!

Thanks to the magic of targeted advertising on the interwebs, I got to see this!

That's my story and it goes round and round.

The Great American Cop Out

I realized I have for the most part tuned out from what passes for political discussion in this great land of ours these days. Together, we have traveled a great distance from a time when a politician who dared ask we Americans to get off our collective arse and do something to improve our country and our lives actually got elected

Most of the political discussion I hear recently follows something like this stale libretto;

I don't like the way things are going (oh, woe is me)
I'm doing everything right, so this isn't fair
Someone else needs to improve, and everything will be great.

I don't mean to pick on the Tea Party folks, or anyone else. I hear this trend from every corner of the public policy boxing ring. (BTW, why does a boxing ring have corners? Discuss amongst yourselves.)

I can give a few examples of this. I don't want to give to many for fear of sounding like a filibuster from The Honorable Senator Oscar T Grouch.

On California's inability to land a state budget within 2 parsecs of the milky way, we hear our honorable politicians and pundits (consistently from green to tea partying Republicans) tell us the problem is that the Federal Government won't promise to lend the state about $10 billion. I mean, really now, our Governor asked nicely, so what's their problem. If only the Federal Government would find the money. . . Perhaps California's long history of reaching political compromise (in both the legislature and general election propositions) by simultaneously granting tax decreases and increased program expenditures is a behavior that needs changing. . .naah.

Arizona (sigh). . . I don't even know what problems the good people of Arizona plan to solve by passing a proposition to make "Brown without a license" probable cause for arrest. All I can figure out is that someone thinks Mexicans can solve Arizona's problems by going away, and this law will help them do just that. All I can say is that if I lived in a real estate market as arse-over-teakettle , I would not want to vote for any law designed to drive potential renters or home buyers away from my community. (Oopsy, I forgot I do live in that kind of market. If only I could have invented a Star Trek transformer and found my Santa Clara brother a place here. Would've saved beaucoup bux).

An entire nation is complaining about China. We demand loads and loads of cheap crap, which they pretty much uncomplainingly labor to provide to us, and willingly lend us scads of money to buy more when whatever we bought breaks. Perhaps, just perhaps, if we Americans saved our own money before buying things, and demanded and paid for quality, things might be different.

Enough of my griping. I'm rambling, so sue me to get your time back.

I'll end this with a short quote form Mahatma Gandhi, the worlds toughest many. Seriously folks, he beat the British Army with nothing but a loincloth.

"You must be the change you wish to see in the world."

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

All The World In California

At least, according to paramount Studios in 1927.

The Map Room found a map from 1927 showing California filming locations that producers could use as a fake for exotic locales.

Out of the whole world, how did I end up by the Mississippi River?

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wisconsin - Why Can't Something Special Ever Be From Anywhere Else?

Wisconsin had a strong day in its continuing efforts to be a pretty strange place.

First, we have the 4th Annual World Champion Cabbage Chuck in Shiocton, WI. Throwing kraut isn't that weird. Heck, I once threw a buffalo chip in a contest for Omaha's River City Roundup (I didn't do very well). BTW, best not to confuse this Omaha event with Sacramento's own River City Roundup, which appears to be a gathering of gay AA members. You do need to be careful, since both events probably feature a lot of young guys wearing chaps.

Anyway,what I think Kraut Wrestling definitely qualifies as Something Special from Shiocton.

If kraut wrestling isn't enough, pedestrians around Stevens Point need to keep an eye out for the the dreaded blow dart sniper. After all, how can we defend the homeland from terrorists who boldly admit they "like to hear people say ouch". If you say "ouch" the terrorists have already won.

I can't prove it, but it seems like Wisconsin produces more than its share of "get-a-load-of-this" news items.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Fitting In

Well, that's my story, thanks to Diesel Sweeties, which btw is borderline NSFW and not very funny for the most part, based on a quick reading of a couple of cartoons.

I am moving to find some unpaid opportunities, since the prospect of paid endeavors is not exactly shiny these days. I thought I could spend some time in the cat adoption and rescue field. I have done that work before and enjoyed it. Would you like fries with your kitten?

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Monday, May 17, 2010

We Live in an An Age of Miracles and Wonders

We really do.

Earlier this month both regular hangininsac readers learned that the age of cyberpunk has arrived.

Now, assisted by and relying on diligent and scrupulous reporting from Australia's Daily Telegraph, I can report to you that. . .

. . . "the Voyager 2 spacecraft may have been hijacked by aliens after sending back data messages NASA scientists can't decode."

I've worked all night, and I think I figured out most of the message.

Mxssagx From Your Lxadxr

Xarthlings, I will soon arrivx from thx Planxt Cxrxs. Hxxd my commandmxnts:

I am zxyxn,prxfxct of the Omxga quadrant and you shall havx no othxr law giving alixns bxforx mx. All humans shall hxrxtoforx sxrvx mx or facx dxath by nuggixs.

Thou shalt not takx my namx in vain. Though shalt takx by mouth, and no morx than four timxs xach day.

Thou shalt not witnxss falsx bxars by my namx, lxst thx bxar bx lxft witlxss. Furhtxr, though shalt always rxmembxr; bxttxr to bxar a grudgx than to grudgx a bxar.

Rxmxmbxr thx absinthx, and drink of it hxartily, for absinthx dost makx thx hxart grow foggixr.

Honor thy mothxr and fathxr, bxcausx I said so, that’s all thx rxason thou nxxdxst. Undxrstand?

Thou art not krill. Thou nxxdst not swim in polar sxas nor fxar whalxs.

Thou shall not commit adultxry, thosx who transgrxss this commandmxnt may bx forcxd to try a duxl, for what good is a commandmxnt without an anagram.

Though shall not Stxphxn Covxy, nor shall thou worship any falsx mxthod of sxlf hxlp. Thou shall not adhxrx to thx sxvxn practicxs of sucknxss.

Rxsistancx is futilx, you will bx assimilatxd.

Remember, you heard it here first.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it. I think I have too much time on my hands.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Deep Thoughts And Words To Live By

This came to me in an epiphany last evening.

"Tis better to bear a grudge than to grudge a bear."

Remember, you heard it here first.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jepson Prairie - Of Blow Wives and Vernal Pools

Last Saturday we visited a Jepson Prairie, a large tract of land containing giant vernal pools. Jepson Prairie is owned and managed by the Solano Land Trust. The Land Trust offers free guided tours on Saturdays. Three volunteers lead our tour. They were all experts in the unique plant and animal species that live in vernal pools.One of the guides even fished out all sorts of specimens for us to observe.

Vernal pools happen when a an impenetrable layer of clay lies a few inches under the ground surface, and you get a wet winter followed by a long dry summer, with no rain at all. The ponds form in slight depressions During the winter, and dry up in the summer.

For the plant enthusiasts, you get unique plants that evolved to grow along the edge of the pools as the pools evaporate. In the spring, as the pools evaporate, you'll see an edge of plants around the pools.

The land is so flat that even these large pools are almost never deeper than knee-deep. You could walk across the whole thing in wellington boots. However, it's better illegal to walk in the pools without a permit.

You might also see blow wives growing in the grasslands between the pools. What an amazing name for a perfectly ordinary little prairie wildflower. I have no idea how a plant could ever come into a name like that. The docent-guides were sure to point out the blow wives to us. Somehow I suspect their interest in this plant is not completely innocent.

I thought the animal species were just amazing. The pools hadn't dried out yet, and they were teeming with weird stuff. I'll start with my favorite, the tadpole shrimp.

This is a very old species. Although they are each about the size of a quarter, they look like they would like to attach themselves to your neck and suck your brains out, probably slowly and painfully. Since they evolved hundreds of millions of years before vertebrates, that would be pretty unlikely, so I guess there's really nothing much to worry about. The guide passed around a small glass bowl of these, fresh from the pool. The closer I looked,the creepier these things seemed. They were the highlight of the trip for me.

We had a similar close look at a newt of a spotted salamander. The newt looked a lot like A Japanese Anime film character called Panyo.

The Solano land trust's Flickr page has hundreds of photos. If you want a more comprehensive look, that's where you should go.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Equal Time For The Prince of Darkness

Well, kids,it looks like Our Lady of Grilled Cheese is getting a run for her money.

New Zealand is abuzz with the discovery of a canned pear half bearing a demonic face.

The pears were processed in China, Safeway Traders Ltd in Auckland assured the woman who found the pear half that "during production the pear halves were checked by people at the Chinese plant as a quality control measure."

That's my story and I'm sticking ot it.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Straight, No Chaser

Hire these cats for your next event in Marin or Sonoma County, CA. They are awesome. The contact info is in the video.

The bass cat has been personally tested by me, as you can see here:

Test result: Very Cool.

Seriously, if you don't hire these guys (like, the cats in the video, daddy-yo), this dude can't accept responsibility for the suboptimal coolness of your event. Dig?

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Danger! Danger! Tax Collection Cyborgs are on the Loose!

Thanks to the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue, there can be no more doubt that cyberpunk has moved from Science Fiction to Social Reality.

How'd you like to pour your morning coffee, turn on the toob for Good Morning Pittsburgh or whatever, and see this:

I almost fudged the old undies when I saw this, and I pay my taxes. I thought the Trilateral Commission's World Government Conspiracy was supposed to be a secret, what are they doing bragging and trash-talking? This just doesn't make any sense.

Besides, thanks to my tin foil hat, they'll never find me.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

What Exactly are America's Priorities?

Les Leopold wrote what I though was a cogent article laying out what is considered a radical viewpoint these days. Reading this highly opinionated article was a pleasure.

It's rare in our American political discourse to be treated to something close to Socratic discourse. I usually see one of two things; Either some opinionated know--it-all screaming about whatever is he knows better (think O'Reilly factor and Kieth Oberman), or writers repeating the same tired old points in increasing shrill language through long and repetitive and nearly fact-free screeds (Alternet and The Drudge Report).

Leopold is looking at his home state of New Jersey, where the Governor is fighting to sh*t can teachers and increase class sizes. He's also looking at New Jersey's handful of hedge fund managers who, in 2009 brought home total pay equal to millions of New Jersey's teachers.

Leopold dares to ask the obvious question, "If, as they say, you get what you pay for, what are we paying for, and what are we getting?"

As an aside, he points out that U. S. Financial Sector profits have bounced back to pre-collapse levels . Do you think think their profits derive from wonderful new productive enterprises, or are they pumping hot gas in to new bubbles. Your every last dollar depends on this, so I wish you all luck, and I wish me luck.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Dallas Cowboys Implosion

Thanks to Immersive Media, you can see a 36o degree interactive video of the old Dallas Cowboys Stadium imploding. What better thrill can there be for a Packers fan (uh, besides Brett Favre wearing a purple jersey and getting sacked)?

Play this thing, scan left, play it again, scan right. This is the coolest thing I've seen on the interwebs in a long time. You can scan to follow the process of the implosion as it moves around the stadium. You really can!

If you were referred from a fantasy football site, sorry if you were expecting strategic tips on shorting the Cowgirls. I've been seing about 20 referrals from fantasy league sights per day. Enjoy the video anyway. It's way cool.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Another Cruciferous Super Hero

Once again, the farmers market has come through big-time. This time it was an earth-hippy organic outfit. Actually, the hippies weren't there today, their teen aged kids were running the show.

Every superhero needs a sidekick. The Kraut of the Nibelung cannot fight evil alone.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present you The Brain!

Like the Kraut OTN, I purchased this beauty for Three dollars. The Brain reports that she will protect Truth, Justice and the American Way by keeping the all brains, cranial encased or naturist, free from the threat of zombies.

The Brain's most awesome evil-fighting weapon is her poison gas blast attack, which has the ability to overcome evildoers at the most awkward and unexpected times.

The Brain just signed a contract to appear with co-stars potatoes, onions, and peas in a revival production of Great Big Pot of Curry, coming to lunches and dinners in California for a while.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

About Me

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I must enjoy shouting into a vacuum, but I think about getting my act together one of these days. My mom says I am very handsome and intelligent.

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