All aboard for The Sombrero Galaxy
* * *
The New Oven is Here
And it has some really cosmic features. Or so I thought, when I overheard MH reading the new control panel settings as he attempted to liberate the oven from its 10,297 square feet of packaging.
Moiself: “Wormhole? WORMHOLE !?!?!? – our oven has a wormhole! This is so cool – I didn’t even care about the convection feature, but a porthole to another galaxy…”
MH: “Um, that’s ‘Warm/Hold.’ It has a warm-hold button.”
AccuBake ® Temp System, Steam Clean Option, and convection shortcut to Andromeda
* * *
I’d read excerpts of this book, which I’d given to select family & friends last Christmas,  but just recently got around to reading it myself.  In doing so, I don’t think I gleaned any new ways to navigate what the author calls the seemingly “jaw-dropping social ineptitude” of my fellow home sapiens. Rather, I felt as if a kindred spirit had confirmed some of my human behavior-related ruminations.
Certainly, the members of the Axis of Etiquette Evil © – i.e., Technology/The Internet/Cellphones/Social Media – collectively and individually enable rudeness on a grander, more immediate and more anonymous scale. However, these things in and of themselves don’t cause discourtesy, disrespect and boorishness. Rather, it seems we have created societies that are too big for our brains. These think-bags of ours have been wired to navigate much smaller, local social networks, where everybody knew everybody and it was in everybody’s best interest to get along. 
“We’re experiencing more rudeness because we’ve lost the constraints on our behavior that we’ve had in place for millions of years.
We didn’t evolve to be around strangers and aren’t psychologically equipped to live in a world filled with them, yet that’s exactly how we’re living.”
(from Chapter 1 – “I Don’t Care Where you Put the Fork
(as long as you don’t stab anybody in the eye with it”
Good Manners For Nice People Who Sometimes Say F**k )
Our new global village has no Protocol Police, no Comportment Cop – no Empathy Auntie to remind us to calm down and be considerate of others. Living in a world of strangers, virtual and actual, we have fewer reminders of and consequences from our rudeness.
* * *
As for that world full of strangers…
Department Of So, I Guess I’m Not Going There
Dateline: Thursday (yesterday) morning, in the Mazda service waiting room.
The first time it I heard the racket I thought, Ah, in an effort to entertain customers the service manager has installed an exotic petting zoo in the new automobile display area! I walked into said area from whence I’d heard the noise, thinking to spot a gasping, asthmatic alpaca. Nope. Just three shiny SUVs on display, which were being perused by a man in his mid-twenties, who looked way too young and healthy to have produced that bizarre, cloppity-hacking sound.
I’ve heard many, many, many variations of smoker’s hack. It wasn’t that. What I’d heard sounded like no cough I’ve ever heard before. It sounded as if someone had tried to dislodge a capybara or Rodent Of Unusual Size from his esophagus. 
It happened again, this time as the same man came into the waiting room and took a seat by a magazine rack. And it happened many more agains, at about four minute intervals. Other than spewing the Barking Sound from Gehenna, the man appeared to be in no physical distress.  Even so, I began reviewing the Heimlich Maneuver in my mind, wondering if I would then be responsible for the emphysema-stricken pygmy bison – or whatever was making those sounds – that would come hurling forth from Bizarre Hacking Noise Man’s gullet.
If I could adequately describe the noise, I bet this young woman could reproduce it:
The sixth or seventh time Bizarre Hacking Noise Man treated us to his vocalization, the service department receptionist and I traded WTF? expressions. I turned toward BHNM, favoring him with what I hoped was my Are-you-okay-do-you-need-anything? look of concern, and received a Don’t even-go-there glower from him in return.
Of course, I could have recorded Bizarre Hacking Noise Man’s guttural cries of the banshee vocalizations and posted them online. Purely for altruistic purposes. As in, to get a diagnosis. Which leads me to…
Department of Futuristic Totalitarian Ruminations
I find the whole concept of Fitbits to be rather Orwellian. Especially the apps and programs that allow and even encourage users to share their personal information, no matter whether it’s with their coaches, their doctors, or on Facebook.
Ah, but the future is here, in the form of a workout nag-band around our wrists. We shall know how many steps we walked/ran/paddled/cycled/swam/flew yesterday, and what our goal is for today. We shall know our resting heart rate and respiration and blood pressure and caloric intake and output. We know, or have the option to know, all these things, and more, through a variety of “fitness” and/or “lifestyle monitoring” devices. I look around, in the stores, on the streets, on the trails and in the parks, and behold my fellow human beings, many of them already sporting these apparatuses, and think,
It isn’t helping.
We shall have our own personal, physiological Wikipedia. We shall have more and more bits and bots of all-about-me info, with which we shall…do what?
We can know all, and still understand nothing.
* * *
Department Of Something Than Kinda Maybe Relates To Ruminations About Rudeness
Re the dentist who killed Cecil the lion. When I read that the dentist had (at least temporarily) closed his practice and website, removed himself from social media and gone into hiding, I couldn’t help but marvel at the what-goes-around-ness of it all. I also wondered if there could be a possibility for him, for just a smidgen of self-awareness?
Failing that, I wonder, can he at least appreciate the irony of a time-worn tale? The hunter is now the hunted.
The killer  seeks protection, a place where he can be safe. Such places are called sanctuaries. You know, like the wildlife sanctuary where Cecil lived. Cecil the lion had a safe place, a sanctuary from which his killers lured him, playing upon his curiosity, his apparent (and unfortunate) comfort around humans, and the instinct of a predator to follow a prey scent.
Unlike many followers of the sad story, my FaceBook wishes for what would happen to this man…I do not want them to literally happen. I don’t want the Dentist Evil Animal Trophy Hunter to be lured from his safe place (although I do want him extradited to Zimbabwe to face charges).
I don’t wish for DEATH’s death, nor even that he experience a mere portion of the 40 hours of torment endured by the creature he ineptly impaled and then had to track and shoot.
I wish for enlightenment.
I know, I know. What have I been smoking? 
If such enlightenment were possible there wouldn’t be so many repellent photos of DEATH proudly posing with the carcasses of the creatures he’d slaughtered. Still, it’s my wish, gawddammit, and I’ll make it while I blow out the fucking candles on my wishing-for-a-better-world cake. I can wish that DEATH and other like-minded ignorant, egotistical, callous killers trophy hunters would come to some understanding  of why people are so upset about this.
DEATH is wealthy and looks well fed. Even if he were poor and hungry he wouldn’t need to spend $$$$ traveling to exotic locales to kill animals humans do not typically eat.  Thus, I can wish that DEATH would consider the mental health ramifications – to his psyche in particular and also to that of the society he inhabits – of killing any living thing, no matter it’s endangered status, for “sport.” I can wish that, later if not sooner, DEATH may come to have a change of heart and mind, and regret and renounce the repulsive and cowardly practice of trophy hunting.
* * *
Apropos of Nothing – Looking For An Investment Opportunity?
My next venture: Nutflix, a streaming service consisting solely of video compilations of what are genteelly  referred to as oooomph shots.
* * *
* * *
May the global police have no cause to cite you for insolence,
May your automobile service waiting room experiences be aurally amiable,
May the pigs of enlightenment buzz your rooftop,
and may the hijinks ensue.
Thanks for stopping by. Au Vendredi!
 People whom I thought might appreciate the title –the book was not meant as a message that I considered them to be Good People who were manner-deficient.
 Is that a new mode of rudeness, to give a book you haven’t read?
 Or at least be civil, if you want need the services of (and you eventually will) the village’s only cobbler.
 I’ve never heard a capybara vocalize, but I just don’t know how to describe the noise that dude was making.
 As in, he seemed oblivious to the DISGUSTING NOISES he was making, geeze, take it outside, fella.
 His name shall not soil this space.
 Nothing, although it’s legal in Oregon.
 Even if they are incapable of agreement with the reasoning.
 A list of his previous kills include a polar bear, black bear and mountain lion.
 That is, by us gracious gentiles.
 Can you believe that show has been on for more than 25 years? That’s a lot of sack shots.