Sunday, June 14, 2009

Geezerhood in One's Late 30's

I have officially been a Geezer for just over 2 years, now. However, I find that some people (say, oh, I dunno, Sage Words for example), can achieve certain levels of decrepitude at a much younger age. As evidence, I offer yesterday's lame excuse for a Blog entry.

Oh, I'm sooooooo tired. zzzzzzzzzzzz

The idea for our blogversation this month was quite simple: Sage posts, then I post, then...well, you get the idea. (If not, return to the lame excuse, and scroll down a little).

So now, we have experienced a lull in the conversation. It's kind of like sitting in the living room, talking to somebody, and looking over to find that person has drifted off to dreamland:

Just as you were making an extremely crucial point, in an impassioned, compelling manner.

Not that I was actually doing that, but I could have been. That's the point.

I think that calls for the creation of one more word to add to the next group of a million. (after which, we can hopefully find another tangent to go off on, as tradition requires.)

So, without further ado, I give you my final pre-subject-change addition to the Lexicon:

The act of substituting a brief whining session for lucid or semi-lucid posting on a personal blog. As in... "While expected to continue one of the world's great intellectual discussions, he turned to the well-worn wombification that he was tired, leaving the expectant masses aghast as he retired for the evening."

Blog at ya later,

Friday, June 12, 2009

On With the Progring

As we continue the linguistic bend in the conversation, you will note that Sage has contributed a new word to start us on our way to the 2-millionth new word in modern English. (Confused? Click here.) After cleverly using it in the title, I will endeavor to contribute a second, inspired just this evening during a trip to the Pizza shop.
As it happened, Sage and I were together, and after an arduous consultation with the menu, and a couple of phone calls to confirm the desired quantity of various toppings, we submitted our order and sat down for the customary wait. In this case, the predicted 20 minutes became considerably longer, thanks to the the fact that it was Friday night. But, no worries...MSNBC was on the courtesy TV for our edification. Which brings me to my contribution to the next million new American words:

Dunderpundit: n., A person, generally employed by a news service, empowered and intellectually qualified to engage in deep discussions of topics totally undeserving of such attention.

Now, allow me to use my new word in describing the fine programming from MSNBC that occupied the 30 or so minutes it took to actually prepare our repast. Over the course of that time, we heard from several of the network's best dunderpundits, who shared their opinions,

analyses and interpretations of a flap started this week when David Letterman told a stupid and tasteless joke involving the 14-year old daughter of Alaska's governor. We heard about the Governor's other, 18-year old daughter, and were informed in great detail about the background, context and other pertinent data relating to the impertinent remarks.

We were told, and told, and told. Clips were played from interviews with an outraged Sarah Palin, answering probing questions from the eminent Matt Lauer. These segments were then dissected by our intrepid analysts and explained in great detail. Just to make sure we grasped the momentousness of the issue. They were still talking when the pizza was ready.

Now, you may be thinking, "That's an awful lot of time to be devoting to some stupid joke on a late night TV show." But really, there must be a good reason for all the fuss. Right? Well, sure there is.

After all, what if somebody had missed the show, and not heard the tasteless joke? What if some people were unaware of the miffing of the Governor? What if it had all been allowed to just go away in the space of a couple of days, and we all turned our attention to things that really need discussion? Like the economy. Like the developing international mess, and our gutless, voiceless Congress?

See? We need to be infotained, so we can all feel like we're on top of the really important stuff. And that's what dunderpundits do. So, these people do serve a purpose. After all, Letterman has to maintain his ratings some way. Nothing like an outraged governor to fill that bill.

Yes, these folks deserve their own title, and their own place in the New Lexicon of America. Welcome to the next million, dunderpundits! Another segment of our fine, free press has now been further defined.

Blog at ya later,

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Another Twist in the Road

Sage Words decided to discuss the financial prowess of his (and his brother's) more tender years, leaving me to turn the conversation to more cultural topics, which I will do forthwith. But, in case you need to catch up, here's a link to Sage's most previous words, which contain links back to the rest of the conversation in case you need to catch up.

I have to admit, I was inspired by Yarntangler's blog today. She had a look at those funny little fake words blogger makes you type out to post a comment, and decided to have some fun with them. You should read it before proceeding.



So I have decided to take up her challenge, and in the spirit of revitalizing our language, offer the following definitions, complete with sentences illustrating their use:

Aggly…A contraction of “Agriculturally”, meaning something pertaining to farming. (He was aggly inclined like his father and grandfather before him.)

Braxessi…From the fictitious word “Braxessional”, meaning a place in which to clean your Brax Hatchet. Braxessi is the actual organic matter that must be cleaned from the blade after you’ve slain a Brax. (As he continued the hunt, Morglanthis found it more and more difficult to keep his blade free of braxessi.)

Catic…Pertaining to felines. (Licking one’s paws and hacking up fur balls are strictly catic activities.)

Deted…Having restored something that was previously removed. (John deleted the reference, but Angus, in a fit of pique, deted it.)

Epokyi…An advanced and far superior adhesive formulation. (When the epoxy failed to hold the pieces together, Bartholomew applied the epokyi without hesitation.)

Furbus…A long range public transportation vehicle. (While the Metro transit was fine for every day use, Penelope found it necessary to board the furbus for her trip to Bayonne.)

Gusalima…An alternative fuel processed from Lima beans, and yielding an average 77 miles per gallon in a motor home. (I’ve converted my Winnebago from gasoline to gusalima, and I’d never go back.)

Hecry…While originally used as an antonym for “shecry”, the word has now evolved to mean anything that would aggravate or confuse a male intellectual. (The student felt great satisfaction bringing up a hecry in the class discussion, much to the befuddlement of his professor.)

Imandeep…Adjective describing someone in a great deal of trouble; it evolved from a contracted phrase that was misspelled in its first incarnation. (The boy knew when he saw the teacher’s face that he was imandeep.)

Jogesing…A person who runs for exercise with a set of headphones, singing along with his or her ipod. (The jogesing is particularly annoying this morning.)

Knolog…A list of things that are known. (If I don’t remember what I found out about that, I’ll consult my knolog.

Loweble…The opposite of a Higheble. (Ugh! That loweble is disgusting.)

Madoom…An old west term for one’s ultimate destiny. (Ahm goin’ to meet madoom.)

Maybe not the most inspiring words I could have written, but they do manage to get the subject changed, and the conversational ball rolling (as in Rolling Home.)

Blog at ya later,

Monday, June 8, 2009

An Exercise in Digression

Well, the Visionary hasn't shared any New American Visions since June 2'nd, so I'm beginning to wonder if we've returned to a 2-way conversation. Looks like we have, at least for now, by default. So...let's continue apace.

I think Harry Stone is just the type of guy I had in mind in my S.C. analysis...and he has a distinct advantage over the others I mentioned, in that, although fictitious, he is still alive, at least in syndication. (for those of you who have become confused at this point due to lack of context, see Sage Words' last post, and follow the links contained therein as necessary. Thank you for your support.)

(my own,very original transitional phrase)

The World of High Finance, as seen from the perspective of the Our Government Leaders:

I've always been partial to cherry pie, so you can imagine my delight, when I photographed the Great Economic Recovery Plan and it turned out like that. What more could one ask for?

It was almost like winning the Lottery. I mean the BIG Lottery. The Grand Champion Lottery: POWER BALL .

Yessir!! That's what it felt like.

Until I got to thinking about it...

See, there was this guy in South Dakota who won the Big One this week. I mean a HUGE 30-state 232-million dollar single-winner payoff. He looked so Happy in that picture, with his giant check for that BIG Payoff...

Too bad he won't get what he was promised.


The Lotto Scam goes like this: The jackpot keeps building up to a wondrous amount...20-million dollars or so at a time, depending upon how many tickets get sold...we all keep pumping in the money and eventually somebody like Neal, or a bunch of workers from the local factory who chipped in every week for tickets, wins the prize.

Pictures are taken; gushing feature stories written; well is wished, and everybody is just as warm and fuzzy as they can be...including, and especially, the MEDIA. It's NEWS. OBOY!!!

Then, somewhere down there in the fine print, we find out that the check, and the big publicity picture is actually (gasp)...a lie. That's right. Our government (or if you prefer, governments) lied to us.

---Well, they don't put it that way...I mean it's the Government, so it's OK, right? "It's OK. Trust us. You elected us. Trust us."---


Neal, as it turns out, took the lump-sum payment. As punishment, he starts out with half the prize amount. (Why? Well, that's just the way it is. It might not seem fair to the winner, but really, it is. Really. Trust us)

232-million X .5 = (and here I rely on my trusty on-board calculator) 116-million.

116-million, minus Taxes (Gotta have our Taxes. How can you have a prize if you don't pay your Taxes!!??)

Or for that matter, "How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat!!??"

...sorry, Pink Floyd moment.

116-million, minus Taxes = 88.5 million for Neal.

Still not bad. But not 232-million, either.

Not what we were shown. (Remember in the Running Man, when everybody was shown pictures of "last season's winners" lounging on the beach, and later Arnold and The Girl found their rotting corpses in a locker room?...ya gotta love that movie.)

So, (Am I rambling yet? Really?) 232 = 88-and-a-half in Govspeak.

The point being...
When you hear a financial plan from the government...any'd best remember ole Neal, the 232...I mean 88.5...million dollar winner. (BTW, if Neal decides to give any of that away, his recipient can expect the IRS et al to conduct a 50 to 55% grabathon. Sorry Neal, I know you meant well.)

But I still like cherry pie. You can't let yourself get jaded about everything.

Blog at ya later,

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Welcome to the New Guy

In case you haven't heard the news, Sage Words is a proud new Godpapa today. He has a picture of young Johnathan on yesterday's post, along with a brief challenge for The Visionary and me.

I just want to start with a big Welcome to Life for Johnathan. Little (or maybe not so little) guy, you are now part of a large, loving family. You've made a lot of people happy by showing up...and pretty soon, Mom and Dad'll have a whole wardrobe of clothes that fit for you.

And now, for Sage's question of the day:

What type of person would I put on the US Supreme Court?


I'd like to see somebody like, say, James Iredell, or maybe Oliver Ellsworth or Alfred Moore. Those guys, I think, had a better idea of what their job was, than most of the candidates for and members of the High Court these days.

They served right around the turn of the century...the 19th century. In 1800, the Supreme Court moved, along with the rest of the Federal Government, from Philadelphia to the new Capitol, Washington DC. When they got there, they found out they had to share this building with a few other occupants:

This was the north wing of the Capitol, the only one ready at that point, and it was also used by the US House, the US Senate, the Library of Congress, the district courts and several other miscellaneous offices. The justices got to hold court in the basement.

When they were in town.

You see, part of the job in those days involved sitting in circuit courts all over the country. That meant each justice, assigned to his own area, had to travel. Had to deal with cases where they came up, listening to the people involved. And they travelled on their own. Sometimes (oh, the horror) on foot.

A lot more work...a lot lower pay...a lot less pretense, arrogance, and isolation from all things not Beltway. That kind of thing doesn't tend to infiltrate your work when you're trying to keep the mud off your boots on a five mile hike in the rain.

It sure would make a difference, wouldn't it?

Yeah, things are a little different these days, aren't they? Nicer digs for starters:

But what goes on inside that nice building has changed a lot, too. The justices hear only a few select cases each year. They cherry pick them according to the political climate, and they only listen to select, elite lawyers, deemed worthy to practice before their majesties (oops, that should be their honors. Sorry.)

It sure would be nice to have somebody among them who understood that a judge is supposed to INTERPRET EXISTING LAW, not legislate by ruling. That a judge is supposed to even the playing field for citizens under our constitution, not "revisit" our basic rights because it suits some politically powerful group. (That's how the right to life got trashed for unborn babies. Remember?)

What kind of person would I like to see on the High Court? There's a lot of room for diversity there. I don't much care about gender, ethnicity, geography or the other factors that seem so important to the pundits and the politicians.

Just about anybody with a real sense of honesty, integrity, and the actual role of the judiciary would do just fine.

Lots of luck finding somebody like that these days.

Maybe they all need a trip back to the basement.

Blog at ya later,

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Tag, Tag...You're, You're It, It.

Well, it won't take you long to catch up with Sage Words' end of the conversation this time, although, in fairness I should tell you he's in the midst of some events that are preoccupying his attention. It's short, but to the point. He's wrong, of course, about that rest of the world thing, but eventually he will inherit a fourth of it. He has to share with his brothers.

But, let us converse:

I couldn't agree more about the George Lucas thing. I'm not sure anybody could locate Michael Jackson's nose, though, even if we knew the exact moment it disappeared.

Speaking of Michael Jackson (or, as his father used to think of him, Meal Ticket), that brings up a use for time-travel, I think could be quite productive:

We could get to the roots of some of the great classic musical talents of all time:

The Nairobi Trio

Observe them in their formative years, so to speak.

Having now commented in a manner fairly responsive to your response to my observation in response to your first observation, I now hasten to digress....

There's a person called The Visionary who would like to join the conversation. Fine by me. (heh-heh) The motivation to get "Vis" into the blogosphere is this story out of San Diego.

You really should read the story before continuing. I mean, if I just summarized it, you'd think I was making it up...But, hey! It's Fox News. It's a Fair and Balanced report. (Must be; they're so fair and balanced their fairness and balancedness is copyrighted.)

Really, though, go ahead and read it.



Now, let me just say that although outraged, I cannot honestly say this surprises me. Kah-lee-Foah-nee-uh has taken the lead in stupidity, arrogance, and self-destructive behavior for lo, these many years.

The problem is, nobody in the state (and particularly in state government) is required to think. In fact that sort of thing is actively discouraged. That's what has made it the shining example of fiscal and moral responsibility that it is today.

Even greater strides are on the horizon, as the Great Ahnold introduces his sweeping cuts in all things educational and/or useful, while simultaneously boosting taxes on all things rational and/or productive (He's a multitasker). That'll teach those stupid voters to turn down Plan A.

(BTW: I just found this illustration of the real reason he sought the Governor's office:

...thanks to The BS Report -Gg.)

I should be able to say that if the victims take this bureaucratic outrage to federal court, they'll probably win, costly as it may be.

Unfortunately, I can't say that because we all know what's been happening to the Constitution over that past couple of decades; and Fearless Leader is busily stacking the Supreme Court even as we blog. Who needs basic moral courage and common sense when you can be politically correct, hey, Nancy? Hey Barbara? Hey Barack?

OK, enough of my ranting. Lets just all be grateful that we have a new form of communication with the White House now, as exemplified on NBC this week:

(They're not sheep, but you get the idea.)

Blog at ya Later,

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Let's Talk Month Begins

OK, so here we go with an experimental conversation, started yesterday by Sage Words. If you’re just catching up, note the later portion of his rant to get the context.

Did you check it? No? Go back and check it.


Now are we ready? Good.

See, I think your last sentence kind of hit it on the head, Sage. The New Journalism requires Caring, NOT understanding, or even comprehension. The new Icons are graduates of the Ted Baxter School of Broadcast Excellence, and in many ways we can see the influence of their mentor everywhere we look.

“Take off glasses, look concerned.”

Just one quick example…Election night…Wolf Blitzer…the new hologram graphic. “Its just like you’re standing right here next to me, but you’re not. It’s just a graphic! Wow! Wowiewowie! Wow!”

Now if we could just get that black outline off you, so you don't look so much like a cardboard cutout...

The election? Oh, yeah. The election. Well, we’ll get right to it…We’ve got the Greatest Election Team in Broadcasting, AND, these cool cool graphics….”

In his defense, he was probably talking to a green screen at the time…so what can you expect. That’s kind of the point here. Our media geniuses are so busy talking to the graphics, they’ve come to see the whole world as a green screen.

....No real point here; I just had to throw this one in.

OK. Idiots reading idiot cards (teleprompters in modern parlance). I guess I can stomach that. But the New Wisdom won’t let it rest there, will it? Sometimes the Product Placement poster boys and girls are re-named Commentators, and Allowed To Think.

That’s when we really get into trouble.

Intrepid Investigative Commentator Nancy Grace, for example, and her recent on-air (do they use that term any more?) conviction of Casey Anthony. Real class. But I’m sure she did her best. With what little grey matter she had to work with.


But then…

Remember The Running Man? Brave New World?

Remember 1984?

We’ve been getting our share of Newspeak over the past decade or so, and it seems the new Ministry of Truth is the media. No more competition, just big corporations (Rollerball?) running all the channels.

Dumbed down TV, Dumbed down schools.
Dumbed down sheep.

Remember The Time Machine?

Blog at ya later,