Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Fresh Rhymes for End Times

Birds are falling from the sky.
Shorelines the world over--from Arkansas to Maryland to Chicago all the way to Brazil--are foul with dead fish.
Of course, the internest is a buzzing with kooked out conspiracy theories ranging from HAARP to scalar radiation to chemtrails to UFOs to variations in the earth's magnetic field to early onset Apocalypse. Then again, the official reasons these things are happening are fairly, if not totally, lame. Why, the fish in the Chesapeake just got too doggone cold. Snapper in New Zealand ostensibly starved to death. The blackbirds in Arkansas were spooked by New Year's Eve fireworks and flew into things, dieing of blunt force trauma. Though, when hundreds of the same species of bird were found dead 300 miles away in Louisiana, that was, well, you know, we're not sure. Turtle doves in Italy died by the thousands because, heck--they were fuckin' hungry. Too hungry. Deadly hungry. Now there's even a Nor Cal die off in Sonoma County, apparently because they weren't nimble enough to avoid an 18 wheeler.

Even being an essentially level-headed skeptical type, these explanations bring about a certain my black ass reflex. I call shenanigans.

As if we don't already have enough signs of some kind of UFO-hoodoo-wrath-of-God-wrath-of-Khan-chemtrail-apocalypse-Mayan-2012-final-freakout, Ashton Kutcher is about to drop a new movie. And by "drop" I mean gingerly lay upon the unsuspecting world like a glistening new baby turd. And by "movie" I mean glistening new baby turd.

Wait'll you hear this: it's about a guy who has sex with his best friend, who's a hot girl and a doctor no less, and even though they mean to keep it "friends with benefits," it turns out they like--maybe even love?--each other.

The mind boggles. Seriously. Who could've come up with such an out there plot line for a romantic comedy? I can't even believe I absorbed all those intricacies in a mere 30 second TV spot. It's so revolutionary, I doubt anything remotely similar has ever even been thought of before, much less created by the magical dream factory called Hollywood.

And speaking of dreams, Jared Lee Loughner is a big fan of lucid dreaming:

And mind control through manipulation of grammar. And a "new currency." And really boring trip hop.

Oh, yeah, and shooting people at shopping centers, including members of Congress, federal judges, and 9-year-olds.

Yes, it's truly fortunate that we can always look to Arizona to be our land-locked island of sanity when shit gets weird. Because when a likely paranoid schizophrenic who'd been physically removed by the police from his community college no less than five times for shouting random shit like "How can you deny math?" aerates a few lefties--and future lefties--what can be a more logical response than heading down to the local Stop and Shoot and picking up that high quality Austrian piece he did all that fine work with? I guess American jobs count up to a point, but them Euros make better guns.

Who would've thought that a hero would rise amidst the habenero-dusted desert nuts of the "From My Dead Hands" state? Well, perhaps not a hero, per se, but someone with a little perspective, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik:

"When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous. And unfortunately, Arizona I think has become sort of the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry."

Of course, this kind of straight shooting from what appears to be a high cap mouth backed by a high power brain has got the pundits of our storied Democrazy gunning for him. Perhaps they'll consider a "target list" with crosshairs when he comes up for reelection?

At least Glenn Beck is all about keeping it sane, as evidenced by this screenshot my friend John Mav grabbed off of his site. (Really.)
We've got to stand together against violence. Unless Glenn shoots you first, in which case you should sit the fuck down.

My mom was born in Toronto. She's been a naturalized citizen for decades, but it's times like these that make me think of a reverse migration. How great would it be to live in a country that can care for its citizens' health needs while not instilling virulent, violent jingoistic claptrap in them via every available radiowave and TV station? When was the last time you heard a tubercular Canadian cough "Canada--Love It or Leave It!" into a megaphone? And who wouldn't love it? If they were the type of people given to shouting sound bites a more fitting slogan might be "Canada--Love It, It's Reasonable!" but a Canadian would likely rather tell you this with a handshake over a plate of gravy fries at White Spot.

Barring heading to the Great White North, what can the average American--scared witless but not shitless by the madness, underpants indicating a threat level brown--do to feel safe? Who can we turn to in our time of sadness, desperation, and confusion?

Why, who else but Phoenix Jones, Guardian of Seattle?

And, lest we forget, his cohorts in the Rain City Superhero movement, Red Dragon and Buster Doe:

"But I don't live in Seattle," I can already hear you lamenting as you're cornered by five drooling ass-rapers in a dark alley. Fear not, Citizen, as the RLSH (Real Life Super Hero--duh) movement, perhaps inspired by the film Kick Ass, is setting to set it off, a utopian era of idyllic good times, with the possible exception of it being really hard to score drugs or whores. There's even a website and registry, so head down to Sears a.s.a.p. and get some bitchin' bright-colored thermals. What could possibly go wrong?

Of course, these masked vigilantes claim to be interested in helping the local Polizei, but the jury seems to be out on that. I live in San Francisco, however, and the cops here obviously don't need any help. Why, just look at these dedicated law enforcers shoot a guy in a wheelchair.

Right in the groin, bitch!

I say "guy in a wheelchair," as opposed to "wheelchair-bound guy," because he apparently has no physical reason to be in a wheelchair, just a preference for rolling over walking, I guess. I must say, he holds onto this preference rather tenaciously, though, in that he doesn't get out of the chair until he's been pepper-sprayed, hit with a beanbag round from a shotgun, shot in the groin with a .40 cal bullet, and pulled out of the chair, at which point, he does in fact stand up. And, knowing a few SFPD officers myself, I don't want to steer you wrong by showing merely the video and not pointing you toward the original article it accompanied. Seems that Wheelchair Man (he's testing RLSH monikers) stabbed an officer in the shoulder and was, you know, throwing stuff. Like knives. Not sure how much of a knock-kneed, two left feet, bungling Mr. Bean Goes to the Academy cop you have to be to get stabbed by a guy in a wheelchair, but who knows--that part isn't on tape. Maybe he was standing and stabbing at that point. Seems you could just dodge the feebly thrown knife and tackle the guy--if he had a gun he probably wouldn't be throwing knives, right?--as opposed to firing at his junk (if the guy was actually paraplegic he wouldn't have felt it anyway), but SFPD are nothing if not thorough.

Being fully ambulatory myself, I feel extra safe in my city and the Bay Area in general, as cops around here don't usually waste bullets on people who aren't in wheelchairs or face down at the BART station.

Finally, before I head off to lucid dreams of my own, how about some insanity of a more festive variety? Around the corner from my spot is a house with a yard full of crap. Instead of planting rhododendrons or a lawn or a cactus garden, the owner of the house planted junk, and it has blossomed. I finally got around to taking pictures of his plastic menagerie.

The lady and I are embarking on a very dangerous mission called Operation: Bait and Switch. First, we're going to add elements of wonder (read: junk) to his display. Then, we're going to carefully replace certain objects with objects of similar or greater weirdness. All of this will be done in the dead of night and photographed, semi-surreptitiously, in the light of day. The photos that follow are therefore to be considered "before" shots, with the "after" shots to come, one installment at a time.

Phone graveyard:
Scared of that:
Because nothing says "property value" like a sink in the yard:
No one here but us plants:
And tiki baboons in construction helmets:
Et al:
Om nom nom:
Don't Fear the Reaper:
His sickle is for sore eyes only:
No parking. Doesn't say anything about "no dumping" though:
Saving Private Hobbyhorse:
Just ducky:
Well, that's pretty much it. Sorry things were so depressing and/or bizarre this go round. At least we can look forward to a bright future:

Times like these call for an increased dose of Everything is Terrible, that's for sure. But not to worry: although birds are dropping from the sky, fish are washing up dead on the beach, and lunatics are circumventing democracy with "Second Ammendment Solutions," the Republic must stand. Move along. Nothing to see here.

Seriously though, in the words of what could possibly be the best graffiti I've ever seen: