April 17, 2011 - April 10, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
. So Apoth intervened with something worthwhile, which every
commenter is entitled to do:
Completely off topic:
European design is an exercise in
perfection and precision. American design is an exercise in imagination
and bringing dreams to life.
. I'm sure there's a pithy IP observation or three to be
made on this.
The reference, of course, is to Rachel Lucas, fondly dubbed Eloise
here at InstaPunk. It turns out she saw a Camaro in Turin:
So on Saturday afternoon we were
walking around Torino and we came around a corner and all we could see
was the hindmost 6 inches of something yellow, and suddenly Rupert
half-grunted/half-whispered in awe, ďHa! No way. Is thatÖ? Holy shit,
it is.Ē We fully rounded the corner and before us was something so
shocking and so out of place that we actually stood there and gawked,
along with half a dozen other people. Iím not kidding. This was parked
on a street in Torino: [see photo above]...
I donít know how to express in words the degree to which that car
stands out in Torino, or in Europe in general. Itís a í68 or í69 Camaro
(Rupert told me but I canít remember exactly), and some of the front
end is modified, something about how the whole hood comes off rather
than just lifting up, sorry but I space out a little when he gets into
car detailsÖall I know is that in the couple of minutes we stood there
gaping at it, several Italians stopped in their tracks while walking or
biking past, to gape at it too. A group of Italian men stopped, put
their hands on their hips and grinned while peering in the windows.
Even a woman on a bike did a double-take. It was like a spaceship had
Weíre mostly dying to know how the
person who owns that car affords it. Iím not joking, gas is around 8
dollars a gallon in Torino right now. I asked Rupert if maybe the owner
put a more efficient engine in it, and Rupert said no one who would do
that deserved to own it. Actually when he said that, he used different
words, but I canít put those words on my blog because my Mom reads this
and I promised. Letís just say Rupert vigorously questioned the manhood
of someone who would emasculate a muscle car in the way I had suggested.
Apotheosis is right that the most interesting part of the piece is the
comments, including the assessment of European design and a subplot
involving Mopar, 440s and six-packs that warms this old heart.
I'm staring at the picture, reading Apoth's invitation to say something
juicy, and I'm drawing a blank. Which is maybe the point. To me Europe
is so completely over and done with it's kind of a wrench even to try
thinking about it.
Long ago, Europe came to be synonymous in my head with, well, death.
Mind you, I like Italians more than any other of those sad bastards,
but I would never return to that blighted continent. Inside of one
week, there's no place over there that doesn't make me feel
claustrophobic and desperate to come home. There is no vitality. There
is no air to breathe. It's all just a fossile of what used to be
Design? Yeah, I guess, precision and pefection are applicable words.
Not ones I'd pick, though. Boring, dreary, stale, and drab, and
occasionally, accidentally, beautiful. In an inhuman sort of way. No
sex. I see them all as eunuchs.
Design, real design, is about breathing, life, erotic fancy. No wonder
a Camaro stops traffic.
I think Eloise
needs to come home. It's been a long while since I read a post of hers.
She's becoming mannered, even arid. Europe. The most important thing
about that place is to know when to leave it. Which is, always,
Sorry, Apoth. Best I could do.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
. I don't hate pit bulls. I hate most of the people who
pit bulls. Our friend
Peter had one. Turned me 180 degrees around on the subject. Sweet sweet
dog. When you see stories like this, what you're seeing are evil
owners, not evil dogs. Notice how surprised they always act when
somehing bad happens? That's the 'ordinary' pose that lets serial
killers slide by police interrogations during extended manhunts.
Dogs are on our mind today anyhow. Our omega sighthound Andrew, bless
his handsome heart, is getting a bunch of rotten greyhound teeth pulled
today. He's nine years old, ancient for his breed. His reward? Oral
surgery this morning. And Raebert is starting Round 2 of his obedience
training tonight. Won't do any good. of course. He's already very
obedient. Except when he wants to do what he
wants to do. Is anyone anywhere
ever going to do something about the Scots? No. I thought not.
Oh well. We try. I'm thinking Helk needs a rescue, uh, Doberman.
Another extremely sweet breed whose image has been destroyed by rotten
owners. But he wouldn't need his hammer anymore.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
They wouldn't dare.
Or would they?
Thank you, O Comcast. For the
Suddenly, the whole MSM is working
for the IRS.
Same every year. Every frickin' year.
. I don't seem to be sleeping tonight, because I'm
throbbing with resentment about the land of†my birth.
Here's the deal. The United States Congress didn't actually propose a
budget for the year 2011. But according to the president's spokesman,
David Plouffe (pronounced phlack), the president's failure to suggest any
budget cuts was a "clear"
signal that he 'clearly' wants to reduce the deficit. Which he's
going to talk about on Wednesday. (Phlack used the words 'clear' or
'clearly' no less than fifty times during his ten-minute interview with
Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday. We take that to mean that the
administration has no
idea what to do.)
Except that we're expected to file our tax returns.
Back to that in a minute. The Democratic strategists and even some of
the "rightwing" hosts at Fox News are scared to death. Especially the
ones who think they're independently brilliant but aren't, like Allyson
"I Can't Proofread the F&F trailers, but I Love Obama" Camerota.
is, some of those evil Tea Party types in congress are claiming
they'll vote against raising the debt limit a month from now. Which
would end the world as we know it. Just ask Shepard "Fuck Hannity"
Smith. The lame Republicans who are asked
to respond to these hysterical fears refuse to use the word "Chicken"
and they also apparently have no sense of the context that makes an
of taking a stand right here and now.
But we're expected to file our tax returns on April 15.
Everybody's talking about credit cards. Not a good sign. The
Republicans are talking about a kind of national credit card, which is
actually a pretty accurate way of describing the debt limit. Their
point is, we just got a notification that our credit limit is frozen at
about umpteen trillion dollars, and since most of us make about 40
thousand bucks a year, we should maybe cool it with future trips to the
mall. So maybe the thing to do is not raise the credit limit but stop
spending so goddam much money every month.
But the Democrats are on our
side. The way they always are. Their point is that if we don't raise
the credit limit, everything will suddenly get a lot more expensive for
those of us who aren't really paying the bills anyways. And that would
be bad, bad, bad. Our little credit cards would implode.† Because
even the rich people who are paying the biggest
part of our minimum balance -- say, forty percent -- aren't paying
enough. We keep buying sweaters and jumper cables, and the Republicans
are saying we should pay for our own sweaters and jumper cables. How
unfair is that?
Not only that. The Republicans are saying they're willing to cut off our
credit cards at a national level. No more sweaters and jumper cables at
all unless we pay
cash on the barrelhead. Jesus.
And the interest rates, and the minimum payments, and ALL that, will
suddenly rise and get totally out of control, and what the fuck is
wrong with Republicans anyway?
You could watch Meet the Pres
and Face the Nation
and so on
till you're blue in the face, but you wouldn't understand from those
shows what I'm about to tell you.
The spending has to stop. If you don't have the money for sweaters and
jumper cables, don't buy sweaters and jumper cables. With me so far?
The Democrats are saying we can bump up the credit limit and get around
to stopping you from buying sweaters and jumper cables later. In next
year's budget. Which will be very VERY harsh about sweaters and jumper
Hey. Responsibility with compassion. Cool. Gotta love those Democrats.
No need whatever to make a big stink about cutting off the credit card
when it's entirely likely that you might need a sweater or a jumper
cable in the next few months. Right?
But there is
Remember the big budget fight we just had? Ugly, nasty, etc. Thing is,
whole fight was about the budget that was supposed to be passed last
year and wasn't.
What no one is talking about. If there's no fight about the debt limit
(the credit card limit), there won't be any real budget passed for 2012
either.† The Obama administration hasn't actually passed any budget
since it took office. Why the Republicans are acting like they'd bring
down the whole country to save a few trillion bucks.
The truth. There is no more credit to finance your sweaters and jumper
cables. The Republicans are willing to tell you that. The Democrats
aren't. They're perfectly willing to let your kids and grandkids pay
for your sweaters and jumper cables.
Who's really on your side?
I know. The Democrats. Fuck the kids and grandkids. You never told them
life was a bowl of cherries, did you?
Of course not.
So file your taxes. By April 15. RUN, RUN, RUN to your regional IRS
office. And you can pretend, like everyone else, that all the crap talk
between now and April 15 about post offices staying open till midnight
and so forth actually means something. Even though it doesn't. (It just
. Don't know how to
convey my utter fatigue and certainty about this. Be a day late. A week
late. Nothing will happen.) More importantly, nothing will matter ever
again if you can't pay for your own damn sweaters and jumper cables.
Think about it. Why should
anyone else pay your tab?
Oh. Sorry. I forgot. This is America. Where everybody else owes me
sweaters and jumper cables.
Obviously what Hamilton, Jefferson, Washington, Franklin, Madison, and Adams had
in mind all along. A free ride for you and me. (That even sounds like a
folk song. Cool.)
btw, if I didn't explain this 'clearly' enough for you, I'm sure the
president's campaign manager, David Pouffe (whatever) can make it
'clear' why the most American thing possible is that you shouldn't have
to pay your own bills. God bless. Or something like that.