Wednesday, April 12 2006
As I was working on an online collaboration today, my collaborator sent me a link as one of our many tangents. It was to a forum where someone claiming to work deep inside the Bush administration had leaked rather copiously. While it's impossible to tell whether or not "Martin Random" is actually who he says he is or is just an imaginative writer, he is nevertheless a brilliant philosopher and wordsmith, with a rare and delightful fondness for toilet humor. These are a couple examples of his addictive prose:
Democracy as a government relies upon the ability of factions to compromise on divisive issues through rational debate instead of violence. The current political power brokers have figured out how to short circuit this process by focusing national attention on issues which are based on differences of non-negotiable, irrational moral sentiment, and are thus not subject to resolution through rational reconciliation. They've broken democracy.
I saw bulge and pants and immediately thought of Rumsfeld's frozen stones. My eyes kind of skipped over Cheney's name.
Edit: As for the colostomy bag, that is DEF. NOT true, because when you empty those things it smells like a portal of hell opened and shat out a hangman's corpse. I've been in the john with Cheney, and while the man makes many odors, it is not anywhere near what you'd get with a colostomy bag.
Today was the first night of Passover, and it was my obligation as the husband of a Jewish woman to attend a seder with Gretchen. For some reason our options were limited this year and we had to drive down to Orange County to attend a seder with Mr. and Ms. Tillson and Ms. Tillson's parents' house. That part of Orange County is very suburban and a far too New Jersey for comfort. (For some reason I hate driving in places that remind me of New Jersey. I keep imagining something terrible happening to the car and then what the fuck would I do?)
It was a small seder based upon the famous seder book published by the Maxwell House coffee company. We flew through the text quickly, doing it entirely in English and with a pause for only one song, "Dayeynu." In English, when you actually understand what the words mean, the Passover story sounds petty, provincial, and tribal. There are reasons for ancient rituals being conducted in dead holy languages, and one of those is so secular humanists can groove on the culture without being icked-out by its content. Between that and the lack of singing, well, there were those who didn't feel like it was a complete seder experience. As for me, I'm a big fan of the mythical one-page seder, which can be found curled up beside the Holy Grail at the bed and breakfast built by a happy gay Republican beside the Fountain of Youth.
As for the meal itself, it included the complete spectrum of
familiar seder foods, only a few of which were compatible with the dietary requirements of the two vegetarians present.
The round of boiled eggs took me completely by surprise. It was something I'd never had to endure at any previous seder. Boiled is my least-favorite flavor of egg. Their fart-like smell horrifies me and chancing to see one in any state of disassembly is something best avoided. With absolutely everyone at the table eating boiled eggs at once, there was no place to park my eyes. I did the best I could, focusing mid-table in front of me and covering my left eye with my hand. Luckily, this part of the meal only lasted a couple minutes.
For me, dinner conversation was most interesting when Ms. Tillson's cousin and her girlfriend told tales from their ongoing work restoring a Bed-Stuy brownstone. They'd bought it in a state of serious delapidation, after it had served for years as a "crack house." Its first floor and yard were jammed full of trash, all of which had to be removed. Initially they planned to rent a dumpster (at a cost of $1000/day) but then their neighbor turned them on to a neighborhood guy who would take away all their trash for $20. Homeslice showed up pushing a shopping cart outfitted with stout horizontal poles that allowed him to move twenty bags of trash per trip. He loaded up his cart and disappeared down the street, probably dumping the trash in some else's dumpster or perhaps in the yard of an abandoned house. By the end of the evening homeslice was totally "lit," yelling the names of his new employers loudly in the street. Only during the course of telling the story tonight did these women realize that perhaps the trash they'd encountered in their house had probably been brought there by this same guy when he was being paid $20 to haul trash from someone else's property.
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