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The Political Wedgie I’m Not Giving

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It just ain’t right :

I tweaked my wrist while setting up my new ergonomic computer stand.

*   *   *

Not even one paragraph into the post, and I digress.

Last Sunday, during my family’s customary dinner at the BCC, [1] friend LH mentioned that, in anticipation of Tuesday’s election results, she’d purchased a bottle of champagne and a bottle of tequila.  Bubbly = good news, tequila = ay yi yi.

As Election Day approached I shuddered to think of a Mitt Romney presidency ay-yi-yi outcome, but forced myself to consider the possibility. The only way I could do that sober was to fantasize about distracting Romney’s Secret Service detail[2] and hoisting his magic undies into a wedgie of presidential proportions.

I never asked LH about what kind of tequila she’d purchased. Shots of any rotgut (“mixtos”) brand, or even your best reposado, would do for a toast to misfortune.  But the following margarita is too good too good to waste on sorrow.  This is not your Applebee’s bar blender/slurpee-style margarita. The key is using the best ingredients:  the proper tequila, ditching the triple sec, and only fresh lime juice.

La Margarita Que yummers – makes 2
-2 margarita glasses prepped w/kosher salt and  lime slices or wedges
cocktail shaker (do not even think of using a blender)
-1/2 c tequila blanco **
-1/4 c agave syrup or nectar
-1/4 c freshly squeezed lime juice. Not frozen, nor from a plastic jar.  Fresh.[3]

Combine ingredients in cocktail shaker, fill shaker with ice & shake well while singing your favorite variation of Guantanamera.  Strain into prepared glasses.  What do you mean, how do you prepare a glass for a margarita?  Do they let you out without a chaperone?

** Always use tequila made from 100 % blue agave. Use only blanco (silver or white) tequila in this recipe.

*   *   *

On Tuesday I gave a good deal of thought towhich bottle LH might be tipping later that night.  It was better than thinking about the news, which I tried to ignore all day, which means I had to stay off my computer.  The three advance dinners in our refrigerator offer silent but yummers testimony as to which room in the house became my safe haven.

*   *   *

What, me worry? Well…yeah.

To those who might call me cynical I have four words:  Look around. Pay attention.

Cynical? Try realistic.  Or, observant:

– millions of viewers make “reality” TV (Jersey Shore & Here Comes Honey’s  Booby… whatever) a rating success

– the past four years have seen a buttload of Republicans who support (or refuse to refute, which is the same as supporting in my book. Silence = acquiescence, y’all) the thinly disguised racial slur/code word rhetoric of the tea party/birther barfbags, and just as many GOP gorps muster little more than a lame, “Golly, that was a poor choice of words,” when their candidates launch their latest, mind-numbingly ignorant attacks on women’s private[4] medical issues

– there are an exasperating number of media outlets that pay attention when Donald Trump’s facial orifice moves, as though there could be anything other than self-promoting trollery in his blatherings, which regularly, cacophonously, emerge via the festering conduit linking his mouth and the brain tissue allegedly residing under his shag carpet cranium.

I could go on, but it’s too damn depressing. Oh, and any one person in any of those categories, guess what? They get to vote. And their vote counts, the same as yours or mine.

As a country, intellectually and culturally, we’re not the brightest bulb in the planet’s chandelier.[5]  My dear friend, expat-Oregonian and temporary[6] Coloradoan LH nailed it: I just have to hope and believe that tomorrow we won’t read a version of the UK Guardian headline, circa 2004:  “How can 35 million people be so stupid?”  Peggy Noonan predicted that Romney would win because she has seen an increase in Republican yard signs.  Two things that should never be mixed together:  Republicans and scientific methodology. 

And then, late Tuesday eve, I discovered that although you still cannot lawfully partake of non-medicinal marijuana in Oregon, LH’s fellow Coloradoans were celebrating their legalization measure, along with our northern neighbors in Washington.

Yep, I finally dared to heed the Big Talking Rectangle.  Although I missed Diane Sawyer’s feeling no pain reportage and Karl Rove’s losing his loo biscuits on Fox News, there was plenty o’ else to love.

I loved that marriage equality measures looked to be passing in Maryland, Minnesota, Washington and Maine. I loved that so many of the Republican slime-fests came to naught; I loved that Colleen Lachowicz, the Maine Democrat who was slammed by the GOP for her online gaming activity, won her seat in the Maine state senate, and that Tammy Baldwin won her senate race in Wisconsin despite the She’s a commie lesbo!  smears from conservative pundits[7].  And I really, really, really – and did I mention, really? – loved learning that those “Life Begins at Rape” GOP caveman, those walking, talking, human peshas [8] Richard Mourdock, Allen West,  Joe Walsh and Todd Akin , all lost their respective, disrespectful campaigns.

Loveliest of all, as astute friend and Brown Dwarf expert MM observed, was that, apparently and ultimately, Mitt Romney forgot his binders full of concession speeches.[9]

*   *   *

Yo, future candidates.  Behold grace, and a dose of humility and pragmatism, in action:

“You always have two speeches prepared, because you can’t take anything for granted.”
(President Obama, 11-6-12)

It is a political tradition, like ass- and baby-kissing, for the winning side to praise the loser’s “gracious” concession.  And from late Tuesday-early Wednesday, the talking heads did that, with varying degrees of enthusiasm. However, I think they were remiss in applying that adjective to Romney’s five-minute, teeth-clenching, whine concession speech.

Romney bragging about how he hadn’t written a concession speech was condescending and naïve, not gracious. Making the nation wait until early Wednesday morning, nearly two hours after the AP, CNN et al had called the election, was stubborn and petulant, not gracious.

I heard no grace in Romney’s mercifully brief but nonetheless arrogant, clueless and sexist recognition – phrasing expected from the most stereotypical 1950s corporate CEO  but cringe-worthy when coming from a 2012 candidate for LOTEFC[11] –  of his sons “for their tireless work on behalf of the campaign, and… their wives and children for taking up their slack as their husbands and dads have spent so many weeks away from home.”

Romney’s mopey wish, “that I had been able to fulfill your hopes to lead the country in a different direction,” was a thinly veiled tantrum.  I wanted it to be different – waaa! As for what followed, those of us who are religion-free know well the creepy, patronizing, presumptuous and sinister threats that are often disguised with an ostensibly innocuous, I’ll pray for you.

“Ann and I join with you to earnestly pray for (Obama) and for this great nation.”

Yeah, cause you’re gonna need it!  Ick.

In Romney’s insular world, his ethnicity and gender give him power as per his religion.[10] Add that to his birthright of wealth and social and political prominence – it’s obvious the dude is used to having it his way, and not having to do much on his own to get it. His the other guy won so let’s all pull together now speech had all the sincerity of a hostage reading a ransom note at gunpoint.

I wasn’t the only one who noticed.  I think the reliably more-articulate (and less profane)-than-moi  salon.com columnist Mary Elizabeth Williams put it best:

He wanted it to be “different,” and he’s praying for you, America. That is not “gracious.” What it is instead is a pretty typical Romney, a man who would arrogantly refuse to entertain the notion of defeat and then grind in his heels and refuse to accept it for as long as possible. A man who…thanks men for their tireless work and “wives” for picking up the slack. That was your glimpse, Tuesday night, of what your President Romney would have looked like. And maybe it doesn’t sound gracious to say so, but thank God that’s the last look we’ll have.

*   *   *

MH, like me, is sick of the years of political mindfuckery, and wants it to fade away.  For the record, for what it’s worth, MH does not agree with my interpretation of Romney’s speech. He thinks I’m reading/hearing too much into it; he thinks I should let it go.  Perhaps, unlike MH and very much like the Dixie Chicks, I’m not ready to make nice.

*   *   *

Thanks…I think:

Every Wednesday, after my Tai Chi class, I have lunch at a local pasta café. This week the café’s cute, chatty, mildly spacey and abundantly tattooed counter-girl squirmed with excitement when she brought my Caesar salad to my table.

“Harry Potter!  You’ve seen Harry Potter?”

“Have I seen Harry Potter?” I doffed my reading glasses and brushed a crouton off of my NY Times crossword puzzle.  “You mean, the movies?”

She giggled her affirmation.

“Every one,” I confessed.  “And read all the books.”

“I finally figured it out, who you remind me of,” she gushed. “Especially when you put on your glasses – you look like the professor who reads the tea leaves…I can’t remember her name, but isn’t that great?!”

Me:  “Uh, yeah…the flaky one [12] Professor of Divination, Sybill Trelawny.”

*   *   *

Sometimes, you just have to crank up the volume and dance.  As Professor of Divination, I see a Go-Gos song in my future.   Hijinks ensue.

Thanks for stopping by.  Au Vendredi!


[1] The Black Cat Café, aka our dining room

[2] I KNEW I shouldn’t have thrown out my Columbian prostitute Halloween costume

[3] This gadget makes light word of juicing limes, or lemons.

[4]  Or what should be private. As in, “Did I invite you to share my uterine functions?  No?  Then grow one of your own or STFU.”

[5] Sorry.

[6] I can hope, can’t I, Lu?

[7]  “Barney Frank in a dress” is my favorite of the histrionics flung by conservative spewmeister pundit/columnist Jeffrey Kuhner.

[8]  A wet fart (Worthington family lingo). AKA Brewer’s Farts, Fudgies, Playing Misty….

[9] Awesome bit of Schadenfreude from a person who, unlike me, rarely exhibits taking pleasure in such a petty but satisfying emotion.

[10] Damn right I’m whacking on the Mormon thing. And so should you. All aspects of a politician’s belief system should be on the table for evaluation, religion included. No exceptions. Future blog posts shall deal with this issue – be forewarned.

[11] Leader Of The Entire Fucking Country

[12] As opposed to being a professor of Potions, Charms, Muggle Studies, Transfiguration, or the other un-flaky wizard disciplines.

The Romantica I’m Not Googling

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This week’s internet hygiene tip for smart boys and girls of all ages: be sure to practice safe Googling.

I received this email from my publisher’s publicity assistant:

Great news! People can now pre-order The Mighty Quinn. Here are the links: Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mighty-Quinn-Robyn-Parnell/dp/1938063104/ref=sr_1_20?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1350928793&sr=1-20&keywords=the+mighty+quinn  

Barnes and Noble (the cover image should be up soon): http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-mighty-quinn-robyn-parnell/1112095494?ean=9781938063107 

And another interesting piece of news to go along with this is that evidently there is an erotic novel series called The Mighty Quinns… And so when you search “The Mighty Quinn” on Amazon or B&N, your book gets lodged right in the middle of some saucy covers. Not the most ideal placement, but perhaps we’ll just suggest people search your name instead.  

Where is a deep, protracted, “Oh, myyyyyyyyy” when I need it?  Oh, yeah, right here.

But of course, I had to do my search and check out the source of those alleged saucy covers. I found Harlequin Blaze a certain publishing imprint, which describes itself thusly:

                 You like it hot! (Our) stories sizzle with strong, sexy heroines and irresistible heroes playing the game of modern love and lust.
They’re fun, flirty and always steamy. 

Ah, as in, Lifetime Channel aficionado core porn? Excuse me for using the p-word; the genre prefers to call itself Erotic Romance, or Romantica.  And, indeed, the series cover “art” features various square-jawed, pectorally-enhanced men[1], most of whom seem to be battling (but not too successfully) the genre-specific, shirt-be-gone malady.

The idea that a searcher for my book may encounter (from The Mighty Quinns: Marcus):

                                                                Boat restorer Marcus Quinn is not going to sleep with the infamous Eden Ross he tries his best to ignore her topless sunbathing and blatant teasing. But when that fails, what else can he do but give her exactly what she’s asking for–frenzied, brain-numbing sex?

 is reason enough to send me into frenzied, brain-numbing my Happy Things file, and confer a Pretty Purple Toe to…well, to me.  And to The Mighty Quinn.  Singular, please.

*   *   *

Whaddya mean, there’s nothing to celebrate this weekend?

Notable birthdays on October 26 include

– Leon Trotsky, Russian revolutionary and founder of the Red Army, 1879
– Mahalia Jackson, “The Queen of Gospel” singer and civil rights activist, 1911
Felix the Cat (the wonderful, wonderful cat),   1917
– Wheel of Fortune host and Vanna White’s drinking buddy, Pat Sajak, 1946
– Hilary Clinton, Secretary of State and world-renowned texting-maniac, 1947

*   *   *

Smarter People Than Us Said This

– The truth will set you free.  But first, it will piss you off.   (Gloria Steinem)

– If 50 million people believe a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing.  (Anatole France[2])

*   *   *

It’s been quite the week, both personally and politically, and no rallies for wisdom or reason or common sense in sight.  One of the few things I find more relaxing and sanity-restoring than doing Tai Chi, reading a good book or contemplating the diverse criteria for categorizing farts[3]  is the bestowing of the Asshat of the Week award.

So many worthy recipients come to mind.  Nominees include:

-The conservative/Republican/fundie/non-uterus bearing Indiana senate candidate who attempted to justify his grievously mistaken notion that what goes on in a woman’s uterus is any of his bid-ness by proclaiming that even a pregnancy resulting from rape is something his god “intended.”[4]

-Perennial Lady Asshat[5] Sarah Palin, who was mysteriously silent[6] on fellow wingnut whackadoodle  conservative pundit Anne Coulter’s use of the word “retard” to refer to President Obama , despite the fact that when then White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel used the term, Palin wasted no time in seizing the spotlight, and called for Emmanual to be fired.

About the r-word.  After Anne Coulter’s spew, a mutual friend of MH and moi posted a FB link to an article that addressed how most people still don’t get the gum-flapping about using “retarded’ as an insult.  That night MH and I had a rumination-worthy dinner conversation about the subject.  In that calm, trying-to-appreciate-the-issue way of his, MH dared to postulate that people (in particular the teens, including our own, we’ve heard rib friends about having, say, a “retard” idea) never envision an actual, mentally retarded or developmentally disabled person when they use the word to tease a friend.[7]  MH rhetorically wondered/wanted to understand why other people find it hurtful, or claim insult for another person or category of persons, when the word is not directed at them.

Earlier that day I’d read a commentary about the incident on a British newspaper’s website.  The article began  “… it should come as no surprise to anyone that Coulter used terms that were idiotic and offensive.”  Well, now, I said to moiself.  I’d bet that many people, even those who decry using retarded as an epithet, would not hesitate to declare that a politician who preaches about divinely intended rape pregnancies is an idiot, and his ideas moronic.  And they’d likely do so with nary a thought as to the origins of the labels.

Moron and idiot are/were rankings on the Binet Scale of Human Intelligence ,and indicated intellectual deficiency based on IQ score ranges, with the respective orders of moderate and profound.[8]

Perhaps, MH speculated, it is just too recent in history that retarded was both a medical description and an insult, but idiot and moron have been out of the medical lingo long enough not to ruffle feathers in the same way.

Yet again, I digress.  The business at hand:

I’d read the excerpts in online newsmags about a certain cartoonist blogging his endorsement of a certain presidential candidate.  Surely, they must be wrong, I thought.  Had to go to the source to discover that no, Toon Guy wasn’t quoted out of context.  And the context, yikes.

In a recent blog post  Scott Adams[9] spends a good deal of time enumerating President Obama’s failure on what seems to be the key issue for Scott Adams.

We grapple with increasing world population growth and climatologically induced natural disasters and extricating ourselves from ill-planned wars and a possible nuclear Iran and the continual rumblings of other conflicts in the Mideast and around the world and a tenuous economic recovery and the burgeoning social, cultural, political and economic divide both abroad and here at home…and the deciding factor for Adams?  The Obama administration’s upholding and enforcement of existing Federal laws governing medical marijuana dispensaries.

So while I don’t agree with Romney’s positions on most topics, I’m endorsing him for president starting today.

Uh….yeah.  Because nothing says rational decision-making like voting for someone you think is wrong about most topics.

And so, with a lusty, pungent inhale, asshat bong-head of the week goes to Scott Adams.

*   *   *

With all the hoopla-doodle-doodery  as Armageddon the election approaches, I yearn for a combination sanity/humor break.  Has it really been two years since the The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear took place at the National Mall in D.C.?

The rally, as those of you who were sober may remember, was co-led by The Daily Show host Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert (who stayed in-character as his Colbert Report conservative political gasbag analyst).  The purpose of the rally, besides being a send-up of a certain, prevaricating talk-radio show host’s[10] ironically titled “Restoring Honor ” rally,[11] was to have some fun promoting the idea of civil, reasonable social and political discourse — you know, the kind of dialog favored by most intelligent, thoughtful, good-natured folk, in contrast to the fear-mongering and irrational shrillness of the more vocal and extreme political voices which manage to dominate the news.

After the rally I remember spending more than a few I-should-be-working hours minutes perusing the online photo collections of people who’d attended or covered TRTRSAOF.  Revisiting the list of homemade signs carried by (and/or t-shirts worn by) the rally attendees still brings a smile to my cynical heart, and will do the same, I hope, to yours.  It is in that spirit I share some of my favorites:

Use your inside voice

I Disagree With You But I’m Pretty Sure You’re Not Hitler

Make Awkward Sexual Advances, Not War

I scare Juan Williams at Airports (sign carried by a Muslim woman)

ALL CAPITAL LETTERS MEANS I’M SERIOUS

Down With Zippers

I Masturbate And I Vote (But Not Usually At The Same Time)

Facts Are Like Opinions Except They’re True

Reality Has A Well-Known Liberal Bias

We Disagree But I Still Understand I Mustn’t Stomp Your Head

What Exactly Is In That Tea you’re Drinking?

THREE WORD SLOGAN!  THREE WORD SLOGAN![12]

I Want My Country Forward

I Fought Nazis And They Don’t Look Like Obama (sign carried by an elderly man)

If You Keep Shouting Like That You’ll Get Big Muscles All Over Your Face

Confused Senior Citizens For Sanity

Christine O’Donnell Turned Me Into A Newt!

I hate taxes.  But I like:  roads, firemen, some cops, traffic lights (except red ones), national parks, the coast guard, etc.  so I pay them anyway.  Oh yeah, I hate war too.

Frustrated
Arizonans
Rejecting
Tea

More Beer Nuts, Less Paranoid Nuts

…and take it off CAPSLOCK

The Mad Hatter called.  He wants his tea party back

WTF, I thought I voted for a Muslim?!

I like tea and you’re kind of ruining it

Don’t be a douche

Even my sign chooses not to yell

Obama is not the devil, I am
(carried by a woman wearing a devil costume)

I like my beer cold, my TV loud, and my homosexuals flaming

I want more tortillas when I order fajitas at a restaurant

Is this the line for Justin Bieber tickets?

Eggs are white.  Obama isn’t.  Breakfast is RUINED.

Stop Americans from stealing our jobs

100%  randomly searched at the following airports
(t-shirt with picture map of us with all major airports highlighted, worn my man with cobalt blue turban and long curly beard)

Bacon is good for me

The sign is too damn BIG

We should do this more often

My arms are tired

404 error political message not found

(Sign attached to a beagle puppy’s collar):  I am not afraid of Muslims, tea partiers, socialists, immigrants, gun-owners, gays…but I am kind of scared of LARGE BIRDS

Am I acting suspicious? (sign carried by a man wearing a Sikh turban)

Lions and tigers and Muslims, oh my

I am pretty sure that god hates us all equally

I already regret choosing to carry around a sign all day

I’m mad as hell but mostly in a passive aggressive way

End Glee theme nights

I see smart people

My name causes national security alerts.  What does yours do?
(shirt worn by Muslim teenager)

When I think about Christine O’Donnell I touch myself

God hates TimesNewRoman

I am the next generation responsible for you in your old age – FEAR ME!
(sign held by toddler sitting atop his dad’s shoulders)

Floridians
Against
Rational
Thought

I left my hyperbole at home

The rent is too damn high

Somewhat irritated about extreme outrage

Does this shirt make me look Muslim?

If you’re not using your braaainnzzzzz can I eat ‘em?  Please?
(shirt worn by zombie)

I shaved my balls for this?

Ironically, this rally is insane.

*   *   *

Thanks for stopping by.  Au Vendredi!


[1] Alone, or in a suggestive embrace with a lissome crotch clutcher

[2] French poet, novelist, journalist, Nobel Prize Winner, and all-around quotable dude

[3] Screamers:  High-pitched, tight-sphincter offerings, often of astonishing duration and tonal variations.

[4] What is it about religion that compounds political stoopidity? Never mind; I already know.

[5] Sounds like a pop star moniker, doesn’t it?

[6] Okay, Sarah Palin remaining silent on any issue, for any reason, should be a cause for unilateral rejoicing

[7] However, Coulter really was directing the “retarded” at developmentally disabled voters

[8] The scale has been revised several times since its inception, with moron, imbecile and idiot replaced with words deemed more descriptive of a scale of intellectual deficiency, such as Beck, Coulter and Limbaugh.

[9] Dilbert comic strip creator and infamous internet sock puppet, who seems to enjoy nothing better than (a) to warn readers of his blog that they are going to misunderstand what they read and (b) issue condescending apologies for confusing readers with his cogent blathering proclamations.  Because, you know, people are too obtuse to appreciate his genius.

[10] Why is it always the lying, slandering, chickenhawk Glenn Becks of the world who loudly squawk about “honor”?

[11] I think Stewart in fact denied that particular motivation for the rally.  But, really.

[12] Actually, that was a chant, not a sign