Department Of Questions That Get Me In Trouble (Although They Shouldn’t)
NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW.
That proclamation, a supposed axiom of our justice system, does not always seem to be so axiomatic when it comes to the rich and powerful. Since the latest/final straw revelations of #45’s felonious acts I’ve been hearing, reading, and even seeing it (moiself has noticed NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW signs posted in shop windows and on people’s lawns) all over the various news outlets.
No one is above the law is a sentiment/principle/practice I heartily agree with… yet moiself can’t help but wonder if those who are earnestly advocating NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW realize that the principle goes both ways, and all ways? That train runs north and south, east and west, up and down, left and right….
If you truly would like to see #45 and his minions prosecuted for their innumerable crimes – and it’s starting to look like the federal prisons are going to get awfully crowded if all of his abettors are brought to justice – then what do you have to say to your fellow citizens who expect the same principle should be applied to all matters of the law? For example, to people who have entered the country illegally. Illegally, which means to violate the law – you know, the law that *no one* is above?
If your answer is “No!” or some variation of, “Well, wait – that’s different….” can you take a deep breath and consider for a moment why there are those on the so-called far right who feel that they cannot dialogue with us lefties?
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Department Of And Now We Segue To A Much Less Loaded Question
Question: what are your two favorite obscure Beatles songs?
By obscure I mean not one of their bajillion  number one hits; perhaps a B-side or a song from besides or maybe just a lesser known song from Revolver (e….g., “For No One” ) or Rubber Soul  (maybe, “If I Needed Someone”) or any of their other albums.
Mine are I’ll Be Back and No Reply. Both are examples of why I continue to love the group’s music. These two songs contain varying rhythmic and/or chord progressions, along with a certain melancholy tone, stunning harmonies and impassioned vocals so different from what their rock ‘n roll peers were doing at the time.
And yours are?
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Department Of What Are The Odds?
Oh, about one in 18,250 – a conservative estimate given that there are 365 individual dates each year  and at least a 50 year age range for people who can legally purchase alcoholic beverages (get out your calculators, y’all – there’s one on your smartphone)….
So: 1 in 18,250. Those are, at the very least, the odds that the clerk in the grocery store defied when she came over to my self-checkout carrel to use her key scanner to enter approval for the bottle of wine I was purchasing. This particular store requires that the clerk enter an “over age 21” birthdate for every customer’s alcohol purchase. The clerk told me she is able to determine “90% of the time” that a customer is over 21 by sight rather than by checking ID (which she doesn’t like to do because it takes longer); after she used her scientific method to determine my age (Wrinkles? Check. Gray-flecked hair? Yep.) she quickly keyed in a random birthdate which would make me over 21, a random date which happened to be MH’s birthdate: the exact month, day, and year.
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Department Of I’m Shocked…
…outraged, gob-smacked, flabbergasted, stunned, astounded, dismayed, offended, aghast, appalled, astonished….might as well throw in the whole book of synonyms.
And by outraged I mean of course that I’m Not. At. All. Surprised. I refer to the recent revelation that the slightly-less-recent “revelation” about red meat eating is likely a steaming pile of…that which hails from the end of the cow that even die-hard beef eaters eschew. 
“Eat Less Red Meat, Scientists Said. Now Some Believe That Was Bad Advice.”
(NY Times 9-30-19)
Provocative headlines, indeed. ‘Tis reasonable to be skeptical when “new studies” proclaim to overturn hundreds of other studies. Indeed, those new studies were criticized by other scientists in terms of methodology and data collection and analysis…and now, ta da!:
The study, which has received a plethora of criticism and has been branded an ‘egregious abuse of evidence’ – concludes that red and processed meat isn’t as harmful as previously thought.
It has since been discovered that lead researcher Bradley C. Johnston, who disclosed that during the past three years he didn’t have any ‘conflicts of interest’ to report….According to the New York Times, as recently as December 2016, Dr. Johnston was the senior author on a study which was paid for by food industry giant International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), who are ‘largely supported’ by companies such as McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Mars, and Cargill – one of North America’s biggest beef processors.
Oh golly gosh, what a letdown. Because in the history of all history we just can’t imagine a doctor or scientist getting paid for shilling for the “food” industry which, of course, only has our best interests at heart.
“… the Coca-Cola company, as far back as fifty years ago, began a campaign to hire scientists to attempt to shift the blame/public attention for increasing obesity and type 2 diabetes rates away from sugar consumption by blaming dietary fat. Their scheme to divert attention from the mounting evidence linking soda consumption with weight gain and poor health included funding the Global Energy Balance Network, an “astroturfing”  organization purporting to research diabetes but whose employees were actually being paid to promote the idea that insufficient exercise, not bad nutrition, was the primary cause of weight gain. 
(previously blogged about my moiself in my prudently titled segment,
Department of Fuck You, Coca-Cola, 3-2-18)
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Department Of The Clueless Guy Who Thinks He’s Attractive No Matter What ®
Watching a recent Unsuccessful Flirtation ®  made me think of my favorite experience with such a dynamic.
Dateline: a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away (circa 1989), at a Bay Area Planned Parenthood. I was working my regular shift at the check-in desk for that PP’s Tuesday morning clinic. The clinic saw patients, male and female, for a wide variety of needs, the majority of which were for routine tests and bloodwork and STD treatments.
A man similar in age to mine (maybe late 20s – early 30s) approached my desk. His idea of checking in for his appointment took the form of leaning his elbow across the desk, making serious, eyelash-batting eye contact with me, giving me his name and appointment time and then attempting to chat me up.
There was no one in line in back of the guy, so he wasn’t taking up anyone’s time but mine…but, geesh. He said something about recognizing me, then segued into a series of questions/statements meant to elicit personal information from me, which I responded to by ignoring them as I got his chart and prepped his intake paperwork. Meanwhile, he’s telling me that he knows the clinic closes for an hour at noon, presumably so the PP staff can have a meal break, so where do I like to get lunch nearby – do I know any good restaurants or cafes?
The thing is, besides…
(1) not being attracted in the least to this guy, and
(2) being married,  and
(3) there is no #3
…how is it possible he could ignore the fact that I, too, was capable of recognition?
I’d seen him – checked him in for his appointment – in several previous clinics. Even if I hadn’t, I had his chart, right there in front of me, to tell me that he was coming in for appointment #4 in a series visits to have topical applications of acetic acid to treat his HPV.
Dude, you are flirting with me? Here? Now?
I *work* here – I know what you’re here for: to have warts burned off your penis. I mean, props to you for doing the responsible thing, but it’s not a turn on.
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Department Of Just When You Thought The Story Couldn’t Get Any Better
So. I got away from Obliviously Flirting Warty Penis Man by getting up from the desk to take his chart back to the clinician who would see him. I must have had “a look” on my face, because the clinic’s Nurse Practitioner asked me what was going on. I told her; we both had a good laugh.
The following Tuesday the same NP rushed up to me as I was getting my coat from the employee break room “I’m so glad I found you – you’re not gonna believe this!” she exclaimed. She had just arrived to work the afternoon clinic and wanted to tell me about the previous week’s clinic, but hadn’t been able to find me after she was done seeing patients that day (my shift ended at noon). It seems that the OFWPM had started putting the moves on *her*, during his appointment! Yep, he was sitting on the exam table, nekkid from the waist down, asking leading/flirtatious questions of the Nurse Practitioner who was applying an acetic acid solution to his genital area. She attempted to quell his queries by telling him that she needed to concentrate on what she was doing…which led to OFWPM making some lewd remarks, including about how it was nice to be around an attractive woman who enjoyed her work…which led to the NP shoving an acetic acid-coated swab up his urethra.
Her apology was immediate, if not sincere: Whoopsie daisy – I am **so** sorry!
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Department of Epicurean Excursion 
Featuring this week’s cookbook, author and recipe:
Kitchen Express, by Mark Bittman
Recipe: Microwaved Honey Eggplant
☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼
Recipe Rating Refresher 
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May you never harass a clinician who has your private parts in her hand;
May you live the kind of life in which your only response to the previous advice would be, “Well, DUH;”
May you cherish your favorite lesser known Beatles songs;
…and may the hijinks ensue.
Thanks for stopping by. Au Vendredi!
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 Arguably one of the best album titles ever.
 Y’all with Leap Day birthdays can go pout in the corner now.
 Nor chew. Ewww. Although dead flesh eaters will eat just about anything….
 Astroturfing is “…the practice of masking the sponsors of a message or organization (e.g., political, advertising, religious or public relations) to make it appear as though it originates from and is supported by a grassroots participant(s). It is a practice intended to give the statements or organizations credibility by withholding information about the source’s financial connection.”
 A man in a coffee shop was really trying to impress a woman, who was giving off every I’m not interested vibe known to humankind.
 I kept pointing to his chart with my left hand, — even tapping it, to get his attention – asssuming he would notice my humble but obvious gold wedding band.
 A recurring feature of this blog, since week 2 of April 2019, wherein moiself decided that moiself would go through my cookbooks alphabetically and, one day a week, cook (at least) one recipe from one book.
 * Two Thumbs up: Liked it
* Two Hamster Thumbs Up : Loved it
* Thumbs Down – Not even Kevin, a character from The Office who would eat anything, would like this.
* Twiddling Thumbs: I was, in due course, bored by this recipe.
* Thumbscrew: It was torture to make this recipe.
* All Thumbs: Good recipe, but I somehow mucked it up .
* Thumby McThumb Face: This recipe was fun to make.
* Thumbing my nose: Yeah, I made this recipe, but I did not respect it.