Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Thought It Was The End, But It’s Snot…

I've been mostly offline for two weeks.

Some of you may have noticed.

Or not.

I had a horrible head cold.

At first it was fun.

And by fun I mean, really, who doesn’t enjoy chapped lips, painfully raw red nose, eyes like over-pressurized boiled onions, plugged-up ears that make the entire world sound like it’s happening underwater in an inverted bucket, the inside of your head itching like ants are crawling all  over your brain looking for toast crumbs, the red pulsating shooshing noises of the sinus headache, the constant coughing, and the snorfling of snot.

The endless, endless snorfling of snot.

And, of course, there was the plague of boils and the giant festering open sores, the rotting flesh and the rising up of the undead … wait, Okay, maybe I just hallucinated that part. Word of advice, don’t fall asleep with a fever while watching Mitch McConnel on CSPAN. I’m just saying.

So, anyway, you know what the best part was?

It happened over the holiday break.

Because really, why wouldn’t I want to spend New Year’s Eve rolled up on the couch in an achy moaning ball of snot snorfling?

But as that Veg-O-Matic guy used to say, Wait! There’s more: after a week the virus decided to move into my chest and in addition to the snot snorfling I got to add bubbling liquid sounds like a dying asthmatic Darth Vader after the Emperor EMP’d the Dark Side out of his life-support system with the crackling lightning bolts of five-fingered Sith Lord Assholery.

Ahahhhhurgle weeeeezh burble burble weeeezh ohaaa snorfle snorfle…

Vader died. Because he was a little clockwork bitch. I lived because my body responded to this affront by transmogrifying into a hundred and eighty pound gastropod.

That’s right, for the last two weeks I’ve been living life as a large garden slug.

Slow, lethargic, cold, unpleasant of personality, disgusting to the touch, and able to hourly generate my own body weight in mucus. I didn’t get over the virus, Folks, I didn’t develop immunity to this particularly obnoxious strain, no, I drowned the son of a bitch in phlegm. That’ll teach it.

There’s only one thing that could possibly make a cold like this better. 

Yes, my wife had it too.

Misery (that’s my wife) loves company:

You’ve giben be the damned colb.
Nu uh, you gabe it to me.
I hate you.
Hate me quieter, I can’t hear Rick Castle’s wisecracking over your snorfling
You want sub more tea?
Ok. But not that disgusting herbal shit.
What kind do you want?
Bushmills flavor. With extra Bushmills. And a slice of Bushmills on the top.
I’ve heard alcohol kills germs.
Ever see an Irishman with a cold?
Well, as long as you’re getting yourself some, get me a cup too.
Ha ha. Funnee. I sneezed on your toothbrush. Just so you know.
That’s OK. After I brushed my teeth, I licked your soup spoon.
Wanna go wipe a booger on the kid?
Yeah. Serve him right. Why should he be so disgustingly healthy?
Damned straight. Besides we’d be manning up his immune system.
The world’s a tough place.
He’ll thank us for this one day.
Quiet now, Castle’s back on.
I’ll bet Beckett kicks somebody in the nuts.
Don’t ruin this for me…

It’s always good to have somebody to share your disease with.

The good news is that between the two of us, the children of Kimberly-Clark Inc, makers of Kleenex brand tissues, will now all be able to attend Ivy League colleges and it’s entirely possible that our need for various pharmaceuticals, soup, tea, whiskey, warm socks, blankets, court ordered parental counseling, and reruns of Castle on Hulu are responsible for the drop in unemployment and the uptick in the global economy.

Yeah, yeah, you’re welcome.

On a side note, if you’d like to have the donuts all to yourself at your next meeting, I highly recommend the Darth Vader Chest Cold of Death. I had no choice but to sit through two meetings on Monday and I had one whole end of the conference room to myself. The rest of them kept looking at me like I was that guy in Dawn Of The Dead, the one hiding bite marks (I’ll be OKAY! I’ll be OKAY! Wait, c’mere, you smell like donuts, tasty, tasty donuts…).

So, you know, it wasn’t all bad. You want in on this action, send me five bucks S&H via PayPal and I’ll sneeze into an envelope for you, because I’m a giver, everybody says so – except it sounds like “Typhoid Mary,” but that’s probably just because my ears are still plugged up.


So, anyway, what did I miss?


Let’s see…

…Well, for starters, it’s a new year.


I remember when 2013 sounded like it was maybe a bazillion centuries in the future.

As a kid, I figured I’d be living on Mars no later than 1990. Certainly no later than 1992 – and then only if I opted to stay on Earth for a couple of extra classes at Astronaut University. 2013? Hell, I couldn’t even visualize that. What would the human race be by 2013? Big giant brains in glass jars? Creatures of pure energy? No doubt war, poverty, crime, hunger, and disease would be only distant horrors our great-to-the-nth grandchildren would learn about in history lessons – lessons fed directly into their huge giant god-like brains via direct computer interface.

So, 2013.

Frankly, I’m a little disappointed.

Still no flying cars. Which is a good thing, I suppose, given that human evolution remains frozen at the gibbering monkey stage.

There’s no big giant brains either. War, poverty, hunger, crime are still going strong, and instead of getting rid of disease we’re making new ones.

On the other hand, Kim Kardashian is preggers. Can’t say I saw that coming back in 1973.


What else?

There were a couple more public shootings.

Fortunately this latest round of carnage seems to have brought the gun crowd to its senses.

Heh, heh, right. That’s apparently the Nyquill talking.

Don’t worry, Republicans are working diligently to protect the inalienable right of crazy people to own as many assault weapons as the crazy little Jesus voice in their crazy little heads commands them to have.

Speaking of crazy little voices in your head, who says bang bang crazy better than Alex Jones?

No, really.

Seriously, if there was ever a more convincing case for involuntary commitment and forced medication – the kind that involves a long-sleeved shirt that buttons down the back, a small soundproof room smelling of urine and vomit coated in deep padding, and a large syringe full of Chlorpromazine – it’s Alex Jones.

Because, wow.

Jones, the under-medicated moon faced King Kong of Krazy Konspiracy, showed up on CNN this weekend about one tranquilizer dart shy of a blood maddened rogue elephant – the kind that keeps trumpeting wildly and biting at its own tail, while stomping villagers into a thin red paste. 

Don’t get me wrong here, I really don’t give a fig one way or the other if Piers Morgan loves or hates the Second Amendment.  But, frankly I just can’t get spun up over the idea of Piers Morgan and his Redcoats coming to take our guns. Given how gaga most Americans are over British Royalty, we’d probably welcome them aboard with a cup of Earl Grey and a scone anyway.  What? Hand over my pistol for a peek at Kate’s royal yabos? Deal! Hey, what do I get for this M-14 and a grenade launcher… ?

But I digress.

When I hear the word “NRA,” I immediately flash to a mental image of an apoplectic red-faced Alex Jones screaming in spittle flecked paranoid hysteria about 1776 and the Redcoats and Mao.  That’s exactly what I picture.  Exactly.  Call me a tree-hugging America-hating comunazi homofacist if you must, but frankly Alex the rampaging rogue elephant and his sleep deprived fan club down at the NRA are precisely the kind of people who shouldn’t be allowed access to anything more deadly than a soft rubber bowl full of cherry Jell-O.  A small bowl.

And this is the kind of guy that the NRA wants guarding your kid at school.  With a gun.

I’m just saying.


How about that fiscal cliff?

You know, it’s 2013.  Frankly I’m sick of hearing about the fiscal cliff. 

It’s not a cliff.

It’s also not a precipice, a hill, or a slope.

This year, let’s call it what it really is: The Fiscal Abandoned Well In Our Backyard That Wouldn’t Be A Problem Except That In A Fit Of Drunken Bravado We Ripped The Covering Boards Off And Dared The Neighborhood Children To Ride Their Bikes ‘Round And ‘Round The Crumbling Bricks Of Its Rim While We Throw Clods Of Flaming Dog Shit At Them.

Sure, it’s a little long, but anybody who has taken basic economics will agree that my term is much more accurate than fiscal cliff.

Do I think it will catch on?

That depends on if I can bribe Paul Krugman to use it in a sentence.


We got ourselves a new Congress, the 113th.


Well, Okay, it’s not exactly awesome or new new.  The 113th Congress is more like a high mileage used car with a couple of sketchy refurbished parts and no warranty.  Sooner or later this old rusty POS will probably leave us stranded and cursing on the side of the highway.

But hey, at least it’s not the 112th Congress, eh?

The freshman class of the 112th, mostly TEA Party fanatics, showed up in Washington two years ago and made everybody read an edited version of the Constitution out loud on national TV. Remember that? It probably sounded good in concept, but in reality it reminded me of that Star Trek episode, The Omega Glory, where a bunch of murderous post-apocalyptic barbarians, the Yangs led by a charming fellow named Cloud William, literally worship an old American flag as if it was the Angry Monkey God or something and mumble their way through a slurred mutated version of the preamble to the Constitution of the United States. The Yangs no longer understand the words or their real meaning, having turned concepts like “freedom” into mere shibboleth, empty words and magical incantations meant only for a chosen few and denied to those that they didn’t like. 

Of course, in the end Captain Kirk bangs a few heads together and manages to convince old Cloud William that liberty and justice either apply to everybody equally or they mean nothing. Period.

Watching 112th Congress with the fire of fanaticism burning bright in their glassy eyes, reciting the Constitution as if it was a holy document, and a magical test of Americanism, made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

According to Kansas Republican Tim Huelskamp, they were going to make “big bold changes” and “shake things up.”  No more old school Washington. 

2013, two years later, 112th congressional freshman class president Scott Austin (R-GA) provided a smug assessment of how they met those lofty goals, “We’re here under a Democratic president, and our job for the most part was going to play defense against what he was going to do. I think we were pretty effective at doing that.”

I think we were pretty effective in doing that. 

You may, if you like, visualize Captain Kirk making the Vulcan facepalm.

That’s right, Folks, the way you get big bold changes is by keeping anything from happening. Obstructionism, secret to the universe, Kids. Write that down, there’ll be a test later. If we still have schools, I mean.

They were going to slap down President Obama, put his uppity black ass back in its place. Make him a one term president, and then erase his name from history. How’d that work out again?  They allowed their rabid ideology to become so all consuming that even their own party began to hate them and two months ago, standing in the smoking wreckage of their disastrous presidential campaign, House Republican leadership finally had had enough and stripped the most obnoxious of their committee assignments. 

Hell, the 112th sucked so bad that Chris Christie ended up looking like a Democrat in comparison.  You gotta suck pretty hard to pull that off. Seriously.

I noticed that they didn’t begin the new 113th Congress with a big show of reciting the Constitution like last time. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or not, I’ll reserve judgment for the moment.

Likely we’ve just traded in one clunker for another, but at this point I’m of the opinion that even Cloud William and his band of bloodthirsty Yangs would be better than the 112th Congress.


Speaking of Congress and getting it done, who would have guessed that Joe Biden would turn out to be The Closer?

You know, it’s ironic. It’s ironic that the Right has done nothing for the last five years but attempt to paint Obama as inexperienced and out of his depth and Biden as a bumbling oaf who spends most of his time swearing at furniture. 

And yet, at every turn conservatives have had their asses handed to them by these same two guys. 

If conservatives are right about Obama and Biden (not that they actually are, but…), you have to wonder what that says about conservatives.

Seriously, you have to wonder who’s having one over on who.

Suddenly Joe Biden is everywhere, from fiscal talks to gun control. He’s the man. Frankly, I’m starting to wonder whether we’ll see a Biden/Clinton ticket in 2016.

But I digress.


Congress isn’t the only thing changing in Washington, it looks like we’re going to get a new, or at least partially refurbished, Presidential Cabinet to go with our new Congress and newly reelected President.

No real surprises there, that’s pretty typical following a president’s reelection.

Cabinet positions are usually stepping stones to better and much higher paying jobs in the private sector.

And more importantly the second term Cabinet is going to have a much different set of operating parameters from the first term and from that standpoint changes in the president’s cabinet are not only  expected, they’re a requirement.

Today the President will nominate Jack Lew (who my brain insists on pronouncing as Jack-O-Lope for some reason) to replace Timothy Geithner at the Treasury.  Lew is obviously the best possible candidate. Most of the objections so far are the standard rightwing kneejerk rejection of anything proposed by Barack Obama, but I doubt Lew will face any real opposition to his confirmation.

Labor Secretary is up for grabs since Hilda Solis is leaving, no official word yet on who Obama will nominate to replace her.

John Kerry will likely follow Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State and like Lew, I don’t expect he’ll face much in the way of opposition during confirmation – especially since Republicans want a crack at his Senate seat and he was basically their pick anyway.

Sometime in the next year Attorney General Eric Holder will likely resign, which should make conservative conspiracy nuts like Alex Jones deliriously happy. If I was Holder, I’d retire from government and open up a gun shop that caters to Latinos on the Arizona border – just to screw with Republicans. But, hey, that’s me.

And that takes us to my favorite laugh out loud moment in the last three weeks: the nomination of Republican Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

Speaking of screwing with conservatives.

Senator Lindsey Graham was literally outraged, calling Hagel’s selection an “in-your-face nomination by a president to all of us who are supportive of Israel!”

Bawahaha.  That’s right, it’s Chuck, in your face.

Hagel’s nomination is brilliant.  I don’t know if he’ll be a good or a bad SecDef, but I like him just for the sheer level of apoplexy he induces in the opposition.

For hard line conservative fanatics, Hagel’s nomination is the emotional equivalent of Eric Holder opening a gun store on the Mexican border.

There’s some fine, fine irony indeed when gay republicans vehemently oppose Chuck Hagel’s nomination because Hagel is, well, a Republican.

Gay Republicans, now there’s an oxymoron for you.  If gay republicans are opposed to republican Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense because he’s not an enthusiastic supporter of gay rights and because he tends to look at gay people as second class citizens, then by extension they should be opposed to any republican in public office because, fuck, look it’s the Republican Party! 

Jesus H. Christ, have you idiots even read your party’s platform?

The fact that there even are Log Cabin Republicans boggles my mind, that’s like the Vegetarian Local of the Meat Packers Union.

Besides the fact that republicans hate Hagel because he’s not gay enough, they also don’t think he’s Jewish enough and he just doesn’t love war enough despite his two, two, Purple Hearts earned as an enlisted infantryman in the jungles of Vietnam (I guess because he’s a Republican, he doesn’t rate Swiftboating over those decorations. So far). 

Honestly, I’m not sure where Obama was supposed to find the gay Jewish warmonger who would satisfy Republicans (take that any way you like), but the comedic possibilities here have had me belly laughing through my own phlegm for the last two weeks.

Even if Hagel ultimately doesn’t survive the confirmation process, I’m going to enjoy watching the hearings given that Mitch McConnell said, “The question we will be answering, if he's the nominee, is do his views make sense for that particular job? I think he ought to be given a fair hearing, like any other nominee, and he will be.”

Mitch McConnell thinks Chuck Hagel should be given a fair hearing, just like any other nominee.

Any other nominee but Susan Rice, apparently.


If the first two weeks are any indication, 2013 promises to be an interesting year.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go buy some more Kleenex.


  1. Clearly you were only blowing snot out of your head, good sir, and not your brains. For you are in rare form with both the History of Diseases in the first part and A Spectral Analysis of Years and Congresses Which End in 12 and 13 in the second part.

    I doff my hat, sir. I doff my hat at you.

    Dr. Phil

  2. It has to be said-I just love the way your mind works Jim! If we bring Kleenex can we come watch you watch/listen/read about current events while you twitch and moan (from the news)while even soaked with snot you have more clarity of thinking then just about any other blogger I know?

  3. Jim,

    I happy that you're feeling well enough to write, but I can't help being a little happy that you were so sick. Because, you have given us a hilarious, spit-your-coffee-onto-the-keyboard description of your illness.

    Your thoughts on the old Congress & the current one, as well as the high-pok-krasy of the GOP are spot on.

    Thanks for the fun & wisdom in the past. And here's to more in 2013 and on!

  4. Your mind works very well despite snot and phlegm. Glad you have survived the plagues and are feeling better.
    One little correction; "not that they actual are..." should be "not that they actually are..".

  5. "Hell, the 112th sucked so bad that Chris Christie ended up looking like a Democrat in comparison. You gotta suck pretty hard to pull that off. Seriously."
    Absolutely brilliant.
    Mint iced tea out the nose is much easier than hot coffee.
    Just sayin'.

  6. Glad you feeling better, Jim. I have to tell you, at the risk of sounding too kiss-ass, that I thought the same thing watching the tea-baggers do what they do. While I am sure that they, like the inhabitants of Omega IV, believe what they say if right, even if it is fucked up. So I guess that Sarah Palin would be their Captain Ron Tracy, egging them on, taking advantage of their ignorance, and laughing all the way to the bank. *sigh* Where is Captain Kirk when you need him?
    Love your blog. It's always a high point in my day when I discover a new post. Keep telling it like it is.
    Michael J. Case, USAF(retired)

  7. I see you're using "interesting" the way the Chinese and I use it.

    1. Jewish curse: May your life be interesting

  8. You are bitching about a sinus head cold which moves into chest congestion? Really? Come on Man Up! I think I'd take that (and I did back in Nov - ran out of tissue and used a case of TP up before I was through.) two weeks of slug transformation over what's been hitting the village.

    Hubby is the health aide here, and for the past few weeks we've had the 48 hour stomach flu a.k.a. turn your insides out every 20 minutes from both ends while you head attempts to fall off and you have out of body experiences like you've drank a whole quart of rotgut all by yourself and then ate bad oysters running (pun intended) like a pack of wild hyenas though the community.

    I've quarantined myself and the kid as much as possible - not an easy task given we just finished up Russian Christmas and 3 days of Starring at everyone's house. Hubby had to get on a plane to go to town for work yesterday a.m. He woke up at 5 a.m. with stomach pains. By the time I put him on the plane at noon, he wasn't walking upright. An hour after he got to the hotel room the projectile vomiting started. I spent the rest of the day disinfecting the whole house.

    Am I a bad wife for being glad he's there and not here? (I AM checking on him by phone to see if he's still alive.) Kid and I are eating roasted garlic, pickled onions, lots of vitamin C, praying to any and all Deities that we don't get this plague.

    As for the rest of this post - watching the tiny heads explode so loudly is great entertainment. I hear laughter is good for the immune system too.

    1. Ah, you would be the Bethal contingent of the Stonekettle Station minions then?

    2. Please excuse my garlic breath, but nope, I'm out in PWS. But this stuff is all over Anchorage now and then got shipped out to the villages during the Christmas shopping spree.

    3. Oh, and he even had the vaccine, but I guess it really didn't help.

    4. Hi hedgewytch,
      The symptoms you describe may be called "stomach flu", but the cause has no relation to influenza. The flu vaccine won't touch it because it was never designed to do so. I hope you and your family recover quickly. regards, Jerry

    5. Hedgewytch - sounds like the norovirus. Britain is currently suffering from an outbreak of "Sydney 2012".



      Hope the "spewmageddon" passes you by.

  9. Snorfling...I'm SO going to use this descriptor the next time I'm under the phlegm. Great post, as usual, and glad to hear you're feeling better!

  10. Glad you are better.
    Wondering if you have seen the idiots that are proclaiming the Connecticut school shooting was a hoax?
    Sometimes I wonder if the idiots are winning......

    1. I have seen that. But then what's another 20 children killed by the government when you already believe the government brought down the World Trade Center and blew up the Pentagon

  11. "not that they actual are" - actually?

    I've had that same thing snot since about October. It goes away for a week and then comes back and stays for three. Gives you something to look forward to in old age.


  12. Speaking of the Jesus and guns comment, I have zero understanding of Conservative Christians and the rally against gun control, let alone, the staunch assembly against an assault rifle ban.

    Out of all the life recorded of Jesus, his best friend used a weapon ONCE in self defense. Jesus rebuked him, fixed his damage, and told him to put the blasted thing away (and questioned why he had it). It is the only time he addressed an incident of a weapon.

    No true Jesus fan supports open ended nor widespread gun rights. We support kids and people staying alive.

    Just say'in.

    A true Jesus fan.

    1. Thank you, I'd forgotten about the Peter?Paul knife to the Roman's ear incident. I'll use it again those so-called Christians who are gun lovers. thank you.

    2. Yes Sophie, it honestly boggles my mind the energy Conservative Christians put into gun lobbying. If they want to follow the example of Jesus and quote and malign using every misrepresentation of what He actually said...do us the courtesy of actually having something to misrepresent. There is not a single word that Jesus uttered that could actually justify the drive for wide net and unlimited gun rights. Not a single one. Most can only be interpreted as a "turn the other cheek" mentality. Not sure that is very aligned or can be even misinterpreted with "anyone,at any time, with anything" gun rights that are touted.

      Just FYI. It was Peter. When the officials were arresting Jesus and harassing the disciples as a group, Peter lopped off an ear of one of the guards (who had a weapon and intended to use it). Jesus put it back on, rebuked the use and weapon, and read Peter the riot act.

      Only time Jesus really addresses use of a weapon...he could not be interpreted as anything close to "supportive".

  13. Jim, every day in every way, you're getting better and better. This is the best yet. I laughed out loud so hard my better half came running in to see what was up! Snorfing! Ha!

  14. You're better! And there was much rejoicing! Your description not only made me laugh to near-choking, it reminded me most vividly of New Year's Eve, 1999. I was fine but poor hubby was down with the Sinusitus Snot Factory from Hell. We toasted in 2000 with the fanciest of wine glasses, filled with Nyquil. {*clink*} Habby Gnu Yar, yay, go bag to sleeb....

  15. Pretty decent post for someone potentially exceeding the weekly WalMart ration of sudafed and Nyquil (with ethanol). Your recap of 2013 only disappointed in one regard, as I thought "What would Jim write (accidental)? when I saw this jewel yesterday: http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2013/01/drudge-hitler-stalin-guns/60784/ Great URL, theatlanticwire...pretty much sums it up. Hitler and Stalin and guns (oh, boy!).

    In the meantime the sonsabitchin' paranoid crowd here in Texas are buying up all the damn ammo. Hell I can't even find .243 ammo for my new deer rifle. It must be entertaining as hell in the board meetings for all those company's whose bottom line is dependent on the weapon used in the latest mass homicide.

    1. It's the same in Alaska.

      Hell, the Ammo industry should send President Obama a thank you card. Seriously, just like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Alex Jones, Obama is the best damned thing that ever happened to them.

  16. I staggered to my computer today, out of the fog of the past 10 to find that a fellow traveler had found his way out of the mists. It is a fine alliance. Did'ya have those wonderfully detailed epics in the wee hours. Out of this world story lines, fantastic operas, and Tom Selleck as Quiqley with his guy pal Sam Elliott and that voice! Well, I guess you were sort of there on the sidelines. I'm glad to be back, sorta.

  17. Jim, i've been enjoying your blog here for over a year, though i've never commented before. Sorry you fell so ill, but whatever magical mix of pharma, booze, tea, and Castle produced such a gush (or stream) of humor, please save the recipe for later.

    i can't choose between your description of the fiscal cliff and your post-Cabinet-career advice for Eric Holder, they both had me laughing. Though, with a Latino surname, i would be sorely tempted to patronize such an establishment, at least once...

    Glad to hear you're on the mend. Be well.

  18. So funny! Only thing you missed out on was diarrhea. I'm afraid to cough or sneeze and find out it isn't gas. Please take a dose of Nyquil and Sudefed the next time you do a post!! You really have the gift of gab and poetic justice to the old 112! Wish my hubs wasn't suffering from extreme dementia, as he would have loved this. Guess that is why I love you so much...you give me a dose of his humor and it warms the cockles of my heart to hear it again.My cats think I have slipped a gear when I sit here and snort all over my keyboard. Thanks!

    1. No no, I included the diarrhea - it was in the part that begins "Alex Jones and the NRA..."


  19. When you're with your honey,
    And your nose gets runny,
    You may think it's funny,
    But it snot.

    Get back to full health, both of you.

    1. My Grandmother used to say: "It's Nasal Nick and the Nine Nose Pickers. You may think its music but its snot..." I'm thinking this came from Danny Kaye maybe?

  20. Very glad to hear that you're feeling better. Now I must insist that you give a listen to the following masterpiece of songwriting, entitled "If My Nose Was Running Money, I'd Blow It All On You", written and performed by Burley and Lardo, The Moron Brothers.


  21. BTW, that Jones guy is in very serious need of medication.

  22. I feel your misery. I was sick with a mean-ass cold starting Christmas Eve. This week I feel normal again. Hang in there, righteous dude.

  23. Forget Alex Jones, take a look at this guy ...


    1. Later that week ...


    2. Indeed, Mr. Yeager did an excellent job of getting himself on every watch list known to humanity, to have his gun license suspended by the state of Tennessee, and to begin being investigated by Homeland Security in one 32 second video. He's the perfect poster boy for why we need some changes made. The idea of Mr. Yeager's tendency to overheat combined with his massive stockpile of weapons is, well, crazy.

      (Excellent read, Mr. Station. Glad to read you're feeling somewhat less slug-like)

    3. (Reposted from my Facebook comment about James Yeager>

      Gun extremists like James Yeager and a significant fraction of the NRA membership REALLY are not helping their cause or doing us sane gun owners any favors with this stupid shit. It may be that the vast majority of American gun owners are sane, reasonable, and responsible people - but guys like Wayne LaPierre, Alex Jones, and James Yeager are the rabid spittle-flecked florid public face of the American gun obsession.

      When you talk about guns in America, right or wrong, these are exactly the people who come immediately to mind.

      Frankly, given Yeager's personal history and his demonstrated and well documented tendency to just "start killin' people" as a first option in nearly every situation, I'm appalled that any state would allow him to purchase a gun, carry one concealed, have it near children, or operate a "tactical security" business in ANY fashion whatsoever.

      I can't decide if it's irony or poetic justice that this kind of insane paranoia (and it IS insane when you openly talk about having to shoot your daughter's friends "in the face" if they try to get into your secret bunker in some imagined apocalypse) will very likely bring about exactly, EXACTLY, the kind of restrictive authoritarian gun control laws that they fear.

      Their questionable judgment and extremist positions, vehement insane refusal to compromise in any way, their inability to offer rational suggestions or even enter into reasoned discussion, coupled to their unending threats of armed violence and vocal promises of bloody revolution are essentially indistinguishable in intent from the America hating rhetoric of Middle Eastern Jihadists. These people, more than any other, are a clear and present danger to peace and security of the United States.

      If the president has to use Executive Orders to address gun violence in America, these people will have no one to blame but themselves - not that they'll accept responsibility for it, mind you.

    4. If they would yank Yeager's FFL (assuming he has one to begin with) it would be somehow poetic.

  24. Bloorble Glorp, Jim. I feel your pain. At least you didn't get the galloping vomits thats been going around this area. Sweet Chocolate covered Baby Jeebus that one hurt.

    And you owe me a screen wipe damn you.

    Awesome, as always.

  25. Dude, for God's sake, Sudafed.

    Dries you up in a day and then you don't have to worry about it spreading to the lungs.

    Also, a ten gallon drum of Jagermeister.

  26. Hope you are getting MUCH better healthwise - if not, please get some antibiotics, there's some awful stuff going around!

    And we ALL noticed that you were gone for waaaaaay too long! Oh yes we did - I'm sure others were like me, hopefully checking Stonekettle Station every couple of days, and leaving without our 'fix'. Not reading your humor made it seem like such a long wait. Hope your snorfling, etc. is gone and does not linger, and I'm amazed that you could write your usual wonderfully incisive and funny observations after being so sick. Happy New Year (well, the rest of it, lol).

    1. Sounds like Jim has a virus, antibiotics do not work on viruses, but indiscriminate use does lead to antibiotic resistant bacteria.

  27. I sympathize, Jim, and hope you and your wife recover quickly. I have asthma, so whenever I have a bad upper respiratory infection or influenza, I dread the crud reaching my lungs. It's just pure hacking misery for a week. I figure some day this will kill me (but I'm an optimist). That concern is why I get a flu shot every year- not a guarantee, but a better chance. [Have you heard the one about "heaven doesn't want you and hell's afraid you'll take over"? I figure that's in my favor as well.]

  28. You failed to mention the Nazis. If you do your research, you will find they are to blame for the common cold. And they are coming to take our guns!!

    1. No, no, the Nazis were a different worst-ever Star Trek episode, "Patterns of Force." Actually, I kind of liked "The Omega Glory" until they got to the flag-worshipping scene. I lost it at "I plegnista" and started throwing things at the picture of Spock as Satan. Sometimes now I have my students try to derive "I plegnista" from the Preamble -- do you know why they can't? Because it's (very linguistically inaccurately distorted) from the Pledge of Allegiance! Arrgh.

  29. A masterpiece Jim! I laughed, I cried, I snot snorfeled. Thank you!

    Your posts need to be on the front page of every major newspaper. No, I'm not an a$$ kisser, just an appreciative reader who can't get enough of people who cut through the bullshit with such skill & humor. You're the Stewart, Colbert, Mahr of the blogging world. Take it national.

  30. I wanted there to be flying cars too...

    Your blog, the Daily Show and Mudflats help me make sense of the USA. It's really good to know that people of Jones's ilk are regarded by so many as suitable candidates for close-fitting jackets.

  31. Bushmill tea is always my favorite when I have a bad cold, too!

    (Of course alcohol kills germs.)

  32. Jim,
    Please start your own TV show. You know, with a panel like The View.
    Let's see...
    Alex Jones, Wayne LaPierre, Rachel Maddow and Betty White.
    You MC.

  33. The terrible thing about bad flus and the "Stomach flu". First you feel like you might die from it. Then you feel so bad you fear you won't.

  34. Hang in there J.W, it does get better. I finally just got over "it." It sounds like it's snotting all over the world, damn those chem-trails. You are correct, it is a heller.

    Funeral today. Family home from all over. The Wisconsin Super Libs (yes, they do exist)are here. When I go back into town, I'm going to bring this up on her computer and laugh while she laughs till she pees her pants. Ah, fun times.

    You have this way of causing that to happen. By the way, was George Carlin your brother?

  35. I thought it was the Ginsu knives guy. BUT WAIT!!! Along with that dandy new set of beer-can cuttin' cutlery, you'll also get "Ahahhhhurgle weeeeeezh burble burble weeeezh ohaaa snorfle snorfle..." This is without a doubt some of your very finest prose. The verb "to snorfle" has gone straight into my bespoke Dictionary of Artisanal Onomatopoeia. Bro, you are the King of Neologisms! And damn you, now I can't get the image of that rampaging rogue elephant, the "apoplectic red-faced Alex Jones screaming in spittle[-]flecked paranoid hysteria about 1776 and the Redcoats and Mao" out of my throbbin' noggin--kind of a Land of a Thousand Dances moment, or water-boarding. Thank God for Irish distilleries--*uisce beatha* is the "water of life" indeed...

    the Digital Warrior-Poet

  36. (I remember when 2013 sounded like it was maybe a bazillion centuries in the future.)

    This knocked me flat!

    I'm definitely here, and it's 2013! Wow! Soon come 2033, another half a bazillion years away. Hmmm!

  37. I find that regular and frequent injections of Bushmills, nicotine, and Pho keep most viruses at bay.

  38. Sounds good except for the nicotine.

  39. The true meaning of the 2nd Amendment is being totally misunderstood and lost in the discussion. It is very, VERY clear and does NOT define nor limit the use/access of any type of weapon:

    "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

    Therefore I want a NUCLEAR BOMB! It is my right!

  40. Jim....yes, I noticed your absence, especially when Yeager showed up...My first thought was "I wonder what ol' Master Chief would say"...well, since you were not here with yer common sense and unflappable sanity, I did a little googling....this is what I found about Yeager in Iraq...


    Is this real or is it fake...I can't tell from my perspective...

    1. It's true enough, though why it would surprise anybody is beyond me. Yeager is exactly what he appears, a mercenary. He's not a professional soldier and never has been. He's not sworn to defend the United States or its citizens. Duty means nothing to him.

      He's a mercenary, he kills people for money (or thinks that he wants to, anyway) and he looks out for himself first and foremost - and he's in the business of training others to do exactly the same.

  41. Flying cars are okay, but I really want everyone to get that computer chip implanted which has the entire body of human knowledge accessible to your memory. People will not need to use up education time cramming in information, instead learning how to access it and how to think.(1,2) Who besides politicians and clergy would object? (unrelated: "Poets, priests and politicians; Have words to thank for your submission.") Probably never happen, as it would mean the end of political parties. Or the Texas school board would try to decide what goes in it... *shudder*.
    (1) bonus points if you know the SF book/series from which this comes.
    (2) extra points if it's a different one from the one I read.
    (3) those points mean nothing, really :) just bragging rights.

    1. Gotta be Heinlien.

    2. Not any Heinlein that I can think of, however Niven/Pournell in Oath of Fealty have an implant with access to computer nets.

      Bester wrote something in the early 70s along those lines.

    3. Hi hedgewytch and Warner,
      I was not thinking of Heinlein, Niven, Pournelle, or Bester. I read Oath of Fealty, good guess, that's not it. I'm not sure which Bester work you're talking about; a specific reference would be nice (but only b/c I might want to read it). Here is a hint: Series of three novels all written in the 1990's by a living author. I may have exaggerated somewhat when I said "entire body of human knowledge", but the rest of my description is reasonable. If no one gets it and Jim doesn't mind, then I'll post the book names in a few days.

    4. Melissa Scott's Union folk in Night Sky Mine, Brainships in the later McCaffrey collaborations (ie, the Ship Who Searched), and mostly everybody in Moon's Trader series. I wouldn't have included Oath of Fealty, myself, as that's just fast access to available data and disappears if the link fails. It's pretty much got to be in the last 20 years, since it's only recently we've accepted that ginormous amounts of information can be stored in itsy bitsy spaces.

      What I haven't read yet is anybody postulating what would happen if the database were deliberately skewed - what if you were a person who was raised to depend on the integrity of the data, and you got a Dominionist-created chip on, say, intelligent design? Eep.

      Ann C.

    5. Also, Mike Sheapard' Kris Longknife series, they have evolving computer companions, with an access port to the brain.


    6. All I can think of is Bester's Computer Connection, however I haven't read Bester since the mid 70s so I may be thinking of another book.

    7. I was thinking of David Weber's "Heir's of Empire", the third book in the Dahak series. The memory chip acted like an encyclopedia, so people were not instantly all-knowing geniuses. In my opinion, the book was the weakest of the trilogy, with half of it set in a low tech environment, like he had two separate plots that he was trying to mash together, though I did enjoy it. The series itself was pretty good overall. Thanks for your guesses- now I have recommendations for more books to read.

    8. I was thinking of David Weber's "Heir's of Empire", the third book in the Dahak series. The memory chip acted like an encyclopedia, so people were not instantly all-knowing geniuses. In my opinion, the book was the weakest of the trilogy, with half of it set in a low tech environment, like he had two separate plots that he was trying to mash together (though I did enjoy it). The series itself was pretty good overall. Thanks for your guesses- now I have recommendations for more books to read.

    9. A Weber I haven't read.

      Wrong, just checked catalog, it is in library so went and glanced at flyleaf. I just haven't read it in a long time.

  42. Welcome back. You have been sorely missed.

  43. Hi Jim - Glad your coming down from viral HELL! Back when I still wore green and blew shit up I found a remarkably effective way to clear sinus congestion is to take a helicopter ride. On a daybreak jump in Sardinia I was deep into a cold (even though Marines don't get sick) and my head was blown up with mucus. The CH-46 took off and while climbing I could feel my face expanding from the pressurized snot load. Eventually, a couple thousand feet up, my upper and lower sinuses let go and I swear a couple pounds of glutenous, steaming green toxic waste ejected from my nose, missed my reserve and splatted to the airplane's deck. The rest of the stick almost barfed and the crew chief was pissed as hell, but getting rid of that congestion was like lancing a huge boil behind my nose. That was the tipping point to getting better; explosive sinus decompression works every time.

    I have said for years (12 to be exact) that if Chuck Hagel were running against Al Gore, I would have gladly voted for Hagel for President. Despite his more specific apparent faults, I always considered him a pragmatic realist amongst the Parliament of Whores. I really, really want to see him face off against McCain and his sissy butt-buddy Lindsey Graham during confirmation. $20 says he makes Lindsey cry. Tommy D

  44. My laugh fest for the week! Go Chuck Hagel!

  45. For future reference - take it & hope you are feeling better now - Green ginger wine.