Sunday, March 5, 2017

talk about just finding out!!!

The latest early morning (like, REALLY early) fast food-fueled flights of fancy/fantasy out of Mar-a- Lago (aka White House South) are full of shocked, righteous indignation that the Obamma administration wiretapped the Trump Tower.  TERRIBLE!!!  Where does this so-called President Obamma get off threatening the integrity of the very sacred election process.  Gee whiz.

Well, DUH!!!  Of course Obamma wiretapped lyin', little donald trump.  My first question would be: how was little donald able to tell the difference between an Obamma wiretap and all the other wiretaps that were and are in place?  You know; all those from other evil entities intent on dragging the donald further down into the mud that he's already slopping around in.  I'd be surprised to learn that there are anything less than a dozen American law enforcement agencies who are listening in on Trump Central a/o other Trump Tower tenants.  And that's just the American agencies.  Who can even hazard a guess as to how heavily wired for sound the Russians have managed to make the Tower's infrastructure?

You might wonder at the laxity of security standards which Team Trump had employed if it's taken this long to figure out that someone had been listening in.  But that can be a topic of conversation for another day.

My second question would be: why hasn't lyin', little donald found out that Obamma is guilty of far worse that the wiretapping nonsense?  Whyinhell hasn't l.l.d. outed Obamma on the egregious abuse of Presidential power when he took his family off on a super-expensive weekend junket on the taxpayer dime?  This is the REAL SCANDAL!!!

I have it on very good authority that, back in early December, Obamma packed Michelle and Sasha and Melia into the super secret Stealth version of  Air Force 1 (aka Air Force X to those with sufficient security clearance).  After a quick trip to Kenya to pick up some family photo albums, he flew the whole crew to Mars and back over the weekend.  They even shopped at the biggest Martian souvenir superstore and bought tshirts and postcards.  They couldn't actually mail the postcards from Mars because the USPS hadn't finalized its service to and from the Red Planet quite yet.  This sort of a jaunt really dwarfs the tens of millions of dollars the taxpayers are shelling out every weekend to shuttle the Trumps and his crowd of fawning toadies and sycophants back and forth between the Beltway and Florida.

But don't think for a second that it's pure coincidence that it was the RED Planet that the Obammas jetted off to.  Here's some proof positive that it's Obamma who's been in bed with the Russkies.  Not lyin' little donald.  I'm pretty sure that Breitbart will be picking up on this one very soon.  And, from there, the sky's the limit.

We have fallen into the unhappy position of being at the mercy of  a madman with a smartphone, a madman who's apparently awakened routinely and early by a complaining prostrate.  Instead of going back to bed after his little tinkle (like anyone with an ounce of common sense would do) he seems to think it's a good idea to transcribe his latest fantasies for public Twitter consumption.  We're talking about a guy who'd rather tell you a lie than steal your tax return or your girlfriend.  And that's saying something when you consider lyin' little donald's penchant for getting his little hands on other people's money and women he's never or barely met.  I think that we can expect ever more and more lies coming out of Palm Beach or DC or wherever he's having his little early-AM tinkle.  Buckle your seatbelts; it ain't gonna be pretty.  Entertaining?  Oh yeah.  Infuriating?  Almost certainly.  But pretty?  Not by a far sight.

Monday, January 23, 2017

thank you kellyanne. and to you, too, sean spicer.

I wrote a couple of days ago that I couldn't wait for Kellyanne "Con Artist" Conway to show her perpetually smiling face on the TV feed.  I was really hoping that I'd see more of her patented deliveries of assorted praises for crooked, lyin', little Donald.  I realize that picking on her for sporting that heinous RW&B overcoat on Inauguration was almost as lame as her wearing the damn thing. Thank the Lord that she didn't disappoint me for too long.

She showed up on Sunday's Meet the Press where she sparred with Chuck Todd over the difference between facts and "alternative facts".  If you don't know already, you can probably guess which of those she was touting.  I'll hand it to her, though.  She almost managed to keep that phony pasted-on smile in place after Chuck Todd suggested that she was full of it.  She's like that inflatable clown which keeps popping back up after taking one square to the jaw.  And the smiles are damn similar.

I saw her again today, back in the national spotlight even if she was relegated to a spot on the sidelines for Sean (of the Brain Dead) Spicer's second attempt to conduct an orderly meeting with the press corps.  His first shot came on Saturday and, even if Kellyanne gave him high marks for his "alternative facts" on MTP, most reviews were less than positive.  Loaded to the gills with direct orders from the throne, Sean blasted the media for doing its job.  I'll be interested to see how often this nonsense is going to show up.

Mr. Spicer did better today in his first official press briefing.  Saturday must have been his first official tongue lashing.  But he sank to the depths of the truly pathetic when he tried to justify CLL Donald's psychotic preoccupation with his bloated sense of self worth.  Spicer took the press to task again, if more gently, for depressing little Donald with its reporting.  How can that constant barrage of negativity help but make The Boss a wee bit defensive?  Can't you people try to say something nice once in awhile?

This poor Donald BS is advanced in deference to the feelings of the most obnoxious, arrogant, rude, crude, overblown, dismissive, bullying blowhard in American public life.  Why can't you just be nicer to him?  This is very close in it's pathetic quotient to Kellyanne's wondering aloud why people can't just ignore little Donald's boorish behavior and trashy mouth and propensity for putting people down and instead detect the goodness of his heart.  Jeez.  Wonder why?

As I write, we're on the eve of Day 5 of the Trump regime.  I hope that the next 1,400+ won't be any more toxic than than the first 4.  Somehow, though, I'll be surprised if that's how it all plays out.  I sense that the worst is yet to come.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Lies, damned lies and statistics. Or attendance estimates.

I haven't seen Rachel Maddow on MSNBC since earlier in the week.  I hope that crooked, lyin', little Donald's thought police haven't snatched her off a network sound stage and clapped her in jail for her outspoken questioning of most of the gibberish coming out of the Trump fantasy camp.  I also hope that I'll see her again soon in her usual weeknight time slot but, if not, the last words I saw her broadcast have already proved prophetic.

Her comment went something along the line of, "No matter what the actual inauguration attendance figure turns out to be, Trump will lie about it."  I guess you can't go too far wrong if you predict that little Donald will lie about something (anything) so I don't know if Rachel really deserves all that much credit.  But it's been entertaining to see the way her prediction has come to life.

I'll admit that I don't know if little Donald has actually lied himself or if he sent one of his lackeys out, fully laden with lies, to lie for him by proxy.  The lackey in the spotlight is Sean (of the Brain Dead) Spicer who, as the Trump Press Secretary, is going to get lots of opportunities for lying by proxy.  But this one was pretty good.  He blasted the assembled White House press corps for deliberate lies about the size of the Friday Inaugural crowd.  He spouted a hodge-podge of garbled District of Columbia mass transit ridership data and a sketchy story (since debunked) about a light-colored ground cover which, according to him, proved that the Trump Coronation attendance was the largest ever.  Period.

I feel a little sorry for Sean Spicer.  It looks pretty clear that he was provided with marching orders that would set him up to look almost as petty and mean-spirited as his boss.  Ouch.  Day Two of the Trump reign and gas has been liberally applied to the already smoldering feud between the big cheese and the press.  I don't want to accuse Trump of being too chickenshit to confront the pressroom crowd himself.  After all, he had a full day to race through and he got his digs in against the media in his address to a crowd of CIA operatives at the Agency's Langley headquarters.  Something about the press including some of the most dishonest people around.  Coming from little Donald, words of high praise indeed.  Spicer did cast Trump as a victim of the Democratic Senators' delaying tactics, thereby cheating Trump of the presence of his CIA Director nominee at Langley.  Waaah, waaah, waaah.

Press briefings during the Viet Nam and Iraq wars earned the nicknames of The Four O'Clock Follies and The Five O'Clock Follies, respectively.  Beleaguered military mouthpieces were subjected to open scorn and ridicule from reporters over the briefings' exaggerated and inflated claims of just how well those two wars were going.  Hmmmm.  Exaggeration and inflation.  Sound like anyone we know?  I'm going to urge Spicer and the rest of his flacks to avoid regularly scheduling their future press briefings at either four or five in the afternoon.  And certainly not on Fridays either.  No need to make it easy for the enemy press to harness the power of alliteration.  The briefings' contents alone will make them plenty easy enough targets.

Away we go.  I think that even an untrained hack like me should be able to find plenty of juicy material from the Trump Gang to fill up a daily report.  I can't wait to try my hand on the comings and goings of Kellyanne Conway.  Such as, wasn't that coat she wore to the inauguration just about the most ridiculous thing you've ever seen?  The only place I can see that as appropriate would be the Philadelphia Phillies' bullpen in April.  God help us all.

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Emperor's got himself some new clothes. And don't you dare say otherwise.

I'd committed myself to paying zero attention to any and all media coverage of today's Coronation...oops...Inauguration.  And I told Ms Susan as much: no TV watching while that cockroach was on camera.  I did pretty well but Susan buckled with the line, "I wanna see what he has to say."  She watched and I caught only the opening lines of his monologue in which he thanked the assembled formers and the 28.5 % of eligible American voters (give or take) who voted for him and the citizens of the world (even, presumably, Mexicans and radical Islamic terrorists) for their roles in his ascension to his Imperial Throne.  I was a little disappointed that he didn't single out the Russian electorate.  After all, those comrades hadn't gotten to vote for him even though they had to bear some amount of deprivation while Putin was pouring state resources into the Trump campaign.  Oh well, the Russians have always been long-suffering.

I couldn't help but see some clips from the body of his address during the evening newscasts.  It was vintage Trump stump rhetoric: one and two syllable words delivered in that strident slo-mo whine of his.  So much for getting presidential and unifying.  I'm sure that his supporters lapped it up even as it's becoming more and more obvious that he has no intention or even the wherewithal to implement the sweeping measures he's been promising up to the eve of the election and beyond.  My question (well, one of my many questions) is: How long is it going to take for those supporters to realize that they've been gulled yet again?  And not by a politician this time but by a reality TV game show host and serial bankruptcy filer.  Go effin' figure.

This is a guy who'd rather tell lie after lie than a simple truth.  This is the guy whose tax returns we're never gonna see.  This is the guy who's never gonna lock Hillary up.  This is the guy who's never gonna sue each and every one of those women who came forward to put some meat on the bones of his self-admitted sexual assault exploits.  This is the guy who's never gonna build that wall though that will relieve him of trying to track down the President of Mexico to collect a check for construction costs.  Heaven alone knows what he's gonna try and do about deporting undocumented aliens and banning Muslims from entry to the country.  This is the guy who's promised to cut taxes while beefing up our military and strengthening law enforcement and balancing the budget.  I'll give him credit for following up on one of his promises.  He's nominated a passel of unqualified and uninformed lackeys to head various branches of the federal government.

My other question (among those many) is: when do we get to start talking openly and publicly about the mental state and stability of this walking, talking doofus with bad hair and an extra long tie?  OK, OK.  Make that really bad hair.  Do we have to wait until this phony starts rolling around on the floors of the White House and chewing on the carpets?  How soon does the shrink on retainer get a crack at the new inhabitant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?  Even with the specter of Mike Spence hovering in the shadows, I'd love to know that something is being done to reel crooked, lyin', little Donald down from the clouds of his megalomania.  Don't we all deserve that?

Sunday, June 28, 2015

cutting and running...

Miz Susan wondered aloud on Friday morning how long it would take me to stop waking up so damn early.  To be fair, I don't sleep thru to the alarm on my crummy little cell phone (now set for 5:10 in the AM) more than twice a month.  But it hadn't been much earlier than 4:30 on Friday.  And it's not like I'd been sneaking out of bed and leaving the phone upstairs to go off an hour and a half before her usual wake up call.  So what right did she have to get all bent out of shape with me?  She was still getting her coffee delivered bedside, as usual.

OK, so it had been at 4:00 on both Wednesday and Thursday.  And at least once at 3:30 the week before.  But still, just because I was slipping into a sleep-deprived psychosis, I hadn't taken to going outside and baying at the moon when almost everyone west of the Atlantic coastline was still sound asleep.  Or threatened Susan with one of the tennis balls we keep on the back deck to chuck at the rabbits which Olive and Grey haven't slaughtered.

I'd had a lot on my mind.  I'd finally turned in a letter of resignation from my prestigious and highly paid position (ha!) as the textbook manager at North Hennepin Community College up in Brooklyn Park.  It had gotten to the point that the 40-mile round trip slog up and down I-94 was one of the bright spots of the job.  The pace and the pressure felt like they were both on the uptick since last fall.  And at some kind of exponentially accelerated rate.  It was getting close to either killing me or moving me to kill someone else.  I tempered that threat by telling people that if I felt like I had to kill someone, I'd go after one of the publishers' sales reps before I focused on the campus community at large.  Jeez, sales reps are a dime a dozen.

This past Friday was my last day and the previous two weeks had been a frenzied whirlwind.  Is that redundant?  I'd add more adjectives for effect, if necessary.  How about fevered, panicked, disjointed, stretched-thin?  I felt as if I needed to get 2 months' worth of work done in 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, etc days.  I had plenty to do and it was coming home with me both in the forms of overtime from my laptop's keyboard and injections into what should have been hours of restorative REM snoozing.

Now I feel as if I've had a huge weight lifted from my back.  Maybe that's because quitting a job that had become overwhelming lifted that weight but was also a step into a free-fall void.  We'll see if the gravity of the free-fall is easier to bear than the weight that had been on my back.  I dashed home at 2:15 on Friday afternoon to meet with a real estate agent about getting a for sale sign in front of our now unaffordable house.  Maybe I've traded one painful pressure for another.

But that said, both Miz Susan and I are almost giddy with the prospect of spending a chunk of our summer together without job pressures hanging over us.  Hopefully, we'll avoid our tendencies to niggling micromanagement and voicing opinions about each others' questionable behaviors.  Questionable to the voicer but, of course, perfectly rational to the behaver.  But if those are gonna be the worst of our problems, sign me up.

I slept in until 5:30 yesterday which ain't bad for me.  Today, though, I woke up at 3:00 in the middle of some incomprehensible bookstore-flavored near-nightmare.  But I shook that off, crawled back into bed and didn't wake up again until 6:30.  I think it's gonna get better.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

cruel disappointments

OK, I've had some disappointments in my life.  I'm not complaining; that's just how it is.  Losing my gig at Hamline may have been one of the worst of those.  That was when a crowd of hapless administrators swapped me out for a crowd of comparably hapless Nebraska turd farmers posing as booksellers.  It's a good thing that I've left that bitterness behind.  In retrospect, none of those disappointment events, as dark as their days may have been, killed me and I'm left pretty happy with life as it plays itself out.

I remind Miz Susan over and over again that, yes, our lives suck to a certain degree but that we've got it easy compared to way too many people.  Those wise reminders don't hold us for long, of course, and we fall back into pissing and moaning mode.  Oh well, p+m'g is one of our few rights and it beats the hell out of kicking the cats or trying to smuggle stink-bombs into work to stuff up into the ventilation ducts.

My latest disappointment has to do with, of all things, the Goodwill.  That's right, the Goodwill.  That which has brought so much fun and meaning into my monotone (but not unhappy) existence.  It might all work out for the best but I have to wait for the late returns on that one.

The Goodwill disenchantment came at me like a two-pronged attack and started maybe a month or a month and a half ago.  I'd been noticing that my home Goodwill store on Charles off of Fairview and University wasn't providing me the wow-factor finds that I'd gotten used to over the last couple of years.  It used to be a given, much to Miz Susan's displeasure, that I could practically count on a grab bag full of keen stuff as a result of my weekly (OK, maybe biweekly) visit(s).  Not that I actually needed any of it.  What on God's green earth made me buy those two MacGregor baseball gloves?  I'm as likely to ever play softball again as I am to play centerfield for the Twins.  Or even rightfield.  And all the shirts and jackets and sweaters and pants which I already had in more than abundance in several closets and dressers at home?  Plates, bowls, cups, nickel beer glasses, coffee mugs.  Like I wasn't able to have a cup of coffee without the Cleveland Indians or Pioneer Press mug I found?  I was doing my best to spread the stuff around to friends and family but that wasn't doing much to clear the clutter.  Not to mention the strange looks I got when I gave people stuff which still had the 99¢ Goodwill price tags stuck to them.

But it was the thrill of the chase and the occasional pot of gold at the end of the Goodwill rainbow that kept me coming back for more.  And more and more.  I guess that dragging all of that junk into the house motivated me to clear some space in the closets and dressers and cupboards and to box and bag up all the displaced stuff to haul off to the Goodwill donation dock.  But that was, at best, a zero-sum game even with minimal disposal of stuff scoring me a few points with Miz Susan.  At least I think that I've never bought anything after I'd donated it.  I've bought a few things which were pretty close matches to what I'd just gotten rid of but nothing that's come home was making a round trip.  I'm pretty sure.

But the Charles Avenue store was definitely getting depressingly more bare and barren by the visit and it sure as hell wasn't because I was buying anything.  There  just wasn't anything appealing enough to buy.

Just as I was starting to despair that I'd outgrown the Goodwill and that I'd have to take on some new hipster affectation, like maybe heroin addiction, a possible solution presented itself.  It looked like the Goodwill was coming to me and opening a new store in Brooklyn Park!!  I was excited, to put it mildly.

I'd been passing by a building site in BPark twice a day for the past several months on my daily drives to and from work.  It was a monstrous cinder block building, maybe three stories tall by three football fields long.  I'd casually wondered who in their right mind was choosing to invest in a  warehouse building in the northern suburbs when it came clear.  Signage got tacked onto the outside of the building in the form of the familiar white lettering on a dark blue field.  Goodwill was coming to town and right on my way home.  I was in heaven as this was all revealed to me.

The reason that my home Goodwill was looking so desolate must have been because the GW merchandising geniuses were pulling stock from it, and probably all of the 42 other metro area stores, to fill the racks and shelves of the Brooklyn Park store with wow factor.  I had visions of stopping at the new store every day on the way home.  Miz Susan would never notice and my only problem would be how to smuggle the new booty into the house so that she wouldn't notice it piling up.  Life was good.

In a fever, I called the Goodwill home office where the merchandising geniuses were housed.  This happened to be in the complex of retail and office space at the Charles Avenue location.  My breathless email (is that possible?) asked when the new store would open and the response told me that it was going to be on the coming Saturday.  Well, I wasn't going to make a 40-mile round-trip on the weekend even if it was for a new Goodwill store.  I might be crazy but I'm not totally stupid.  I could wait until the following week.

I played a little passive/aggressive on Miz Susan on Monday afternoon.  I called her from the car as I was exiting the NoHenn parking lot and told her that I was going to try to hold off on stopping at the new Goodwill until later in the week.  I heard her long sigh (and if I'd had a picture phone I'd have seen her rolling her eyes) and she told me to go ahead and stop.  I might have heard her whisper through gritted teeth that she didn't really care if I ever came home but maybe that was just the hum of the tires and the wind whistling past the Camry.

But, oh boy, had I been played.  I wish that I had a copy of the store's security camera footage as I walked through the door and looked around.  My jaw must have dropped a good 8 inches.  I'd stumbled into a Goodwill Outlet store.  The place was fixtured with a bunch of low-lying...somethings...which could have been feed troughs for cattle or horses.  Someone has told me since that that's exactly what they are.  There was junk poured onto these troughs in no discernible order with no apparent discernible pricing system.  Far from skimming the cream of their other 42 metro area stores' inventories, the Goodwill merchandising geniuses seemed to have chosen to stock this store with whatever they'd been able to fish out of trash cans as they cruised up and down the alleys of the metro area.  I left as quickly as possible so that I could get home and take a shower.  I felt dirty and betrayed.  I think that I broke into tears as I walked in the door and blubbered out my story to Miz Susan.  She sent me straight to bed.  I think she slept in one of the spare bedrooms that night.  Or maybe on the couch.

The one-two punch of two crummy Goodwill stores was like a couple of body blows.  I stayed away from any and all Goodwill stores for better than a week.  I snuck in a trip to the St. Vincent de Paul store down on 7th Street.  I should have known better; no wow factor there either.

This past Wednesday, I stopped in at the Charles Avenue store.  And was greeted with signs announcing a clearance sale at 50% off everything in the store.  None of that everything was worth buying even at 50% off but the real news, the heart-gladdening news, the news that's fired up my will and desire to go thrift shopping again was in the lower half of the signs.  The Goodwill was going to close down their Charles Avenue Store to pave the way for a brand new, two-storied, Taj Mahal and Mecca of a Goodwill store at 1239 University Avenue.  Which would be doing a Grand Opening on Saturday the 28th, now less than a week away.  Talk about being pulled from the very depths of desolate depression to the heights of glorious new thrift shop possibilities.  I think that Miz Susan was happy for me when I blurted out the great news after I got home on Wednesday.

It turns out that what was news to me was ho-hum for others.  Big surprise there.  When I saw Sue's sister Jill at the gala opening of this year's version of the Monroe 4th Grade Opera (named Electric Catastrophe: Save the Energy; there's probably YouTube video out there), her first question for me was, "Are you ready for the Grand Opening of the new Goodwill store?"  She'd known for weeks.  Or maybe just days.  But ages longer than I'd known.  She suggested that we get a big group together to make the scene.  Which would be fine by me.  I doubt that we'll be able to strong-arm Miz Susan into that excursion.  She puts up with my thrift shop shenanigans, if barely, but I don't think that she's ready to surrender to the idea that her life is as silly as mine.  She's undoubtedly right.  I'm doing my best to drag her down but she's remaining above it all.  Class will win out, in the end.  She's got it.  Me?  Not quite so much.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

breaking news

Just this morning, which started for me at 3:30 when I couldn't get back to sleep, I learned of developments involving two Minnesota luminaries.  Oh, what the heck, make that icons.

The early AM newscast had Paul Molitor being called back in for a second interview with Minnesota Twins brass in the search for a new manager for the team.  I've loved Paul Molitor even before the day  I bought a "Paul Molitor for Rookie of the Year" t-shirt at the liquor store up on Snelling at Hague.  The one which was a long-time inhabitant of the corner which is now a Play-It-Again-Sports outlet.  I also remember playing IM touch football against him at the U (as a ringer, of course) back when I could be counted on to do something else with a football other than drop it.  We kicked their asses.  Just sayin'.

How do I get off on these tangents?  Back to Paul Molitor and his future with the Twins.  Molitor was a great player with the Brewers and the Blue Jays and even the Twins as he wrapped up his playing career.  He was an All Star multiple times and a deserving inductee into the Hall of Fame.  Those credentials are beyond question.

Lately, he's been a coach for the Twins.  This probably earned him an inside track at a first interview in the wake of Ron Gardenhire's departure.  Still all well and good even if the Twins have stunk during much of Paul's coaching days.

However, it was reported this morning that he'd earned the second interview based, in part, on his familiarity with the Twins' system.  Ouch.  Hopefully that's only a very small part cuz the Twins' system has been pretty dysfunctional lately.

And Michele Bachmann's back in the news.  Thank God; I've missed her re-election commercials this cycle.  But now it sounds as if the Congresswoman has earned some extra security protection.  Based on threats from, get this, ISIL.  ISIL, I was told by Kim Insley or Carla Hult, has made threats of some sort against Michele.  Apparently those maniacs are pissed off at her because of her outspoken public criticism of their organization's operations and methodology.  Hmmmmm.  I wonder who else ISIL is targeting based on the targets' public criticisms.  That would pretty much be all of us, right?

I've been pissed off at Michele Bachmann for years because of her outspoken public criticism of any number of things.  But I've never been pissed off enough to broadcast any threats against her.  And I've given her grudging credit for the inventiveness and entertainment value of her public criticisms.  Fortunately, this country has enough checks and balances in place to have kept Michele and her like from rising any further than she has.  Unfortunately, the checks and balances in Syria and Iraq and Afghanistan are in need of some fine tuning.

I have no idea how much further ISIL will advance its agenda.  I hope that they're approaching a high water mark and that that agenda of hate and ignorance will start to wither away.  For now, I'll take some comfort in the fact that Michele Bachmann and her agenda of hate and ignorance have reached a high water mark.  Even if that's not without some fresh lunacy making the headlines.