Archive for December, 2006

A Big Disconnect

Wednesday, December 27th, 2006

  

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Among the sickening new buzzwords and jargon I’ve learned recently are “drink the Kool-Aid” and “drill down.” “Circle back” now means what “get back to me” used to mean. “Incentivize” is a painful one, isn’t it?  

“Ping” means to contact someone. I know that if I worked in an office, and someone told me to ping them, I’d just kill myself. It might incentivize the management to speak normal English. What is it about offices that spawns such bullshit?

If you already know these words, I guess I’m jumping the shark here (unless my understanding of this stupid term is incorrect.) If you enjoy the masochistic thrill of discovering new jargon, here’s a dictionary of it.   There is also a jargon generator to have some fun with.

Sometimes, I find myself searching for the normal word for a trendy one that’s been making the rounds…and that can be scary. I had to ask a friend what “snarky” had taken the place of, and he had no trouble remembering “snide.” He is an expert crossword solver, so perhaps that’s one way to maintain one’s vocabulary in the hailstorm of business-speak that seems more and more relentless.

BuzzWhack calls itself a website “dedicated to de-mystifying buzzwords” and Bullfighter is a software program that helps find and eliminate jargon from your documents. Bullfighter is free, and I really like the sound of it.  I sense  a genuine contempt for buzzwords here, and a snide, rather than snarky, sense of humor.
  

666

Saturday, December 23rd, 2006

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The only thing better than a Christian evangelist is a delusional Christian evangelist who sees 666 everywhere. My friend Tony led me to the Jesus is Savior website, where a nutcase called Texe Marrs reveals the hidden satanic imagery in so-called innocent corporations like Lucent, Microsoft, Apple, Proctor & Gamble and of course Disneyland.

Nothing new there; we all know those companies work for the devil. But did you know that Helen Keller was a Satanist too? Me neither! But she was cleverly throwing a holla to Satan when she devised the sign language for I Love You. Not just Helen, but Bill Clinton, too. Shit, there goes my whole fantasy about a ‘special’ day with Bill Clinton and Sasha Baron Cohen. Sasha and I will have to go it alone.

Everywhere you look, the devil-worshippers are at it, tricking god-fearing citizens into buying their filthy products or voting for them, or just tempting people into making films about them starring Patty Duke. They are continuously foisting their evil agenda upon us, even as we use Adobe photoshop (Adobe = Prince of Darkness)

I’m not sure I feel good about the name “Texe Marrs.” What kind of name is that, anyway? Is it an anagram for RAT REM SEX, which is a disgusting perversion involving rats dreaming about sex or vice-versa? It makes me sick, that’s all I know. Let’s keep an eye on that bastard. But not the all-seeing CBS eye, because duh, that place is run by pagan philistines, like the Pope.

The Story of the Lesbian Stick

Thursday, December 21st, 2006

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Tonight, when I told my older son that I’d found a good Baby Jesus to steal, he reminded me of the Lesbian Stick.

A long time ago, in a galaxy right next door, my neighbors moved away to live near their grandchildren, and sold their house to a Lesbian Couple. The husband Lesbian was Nancy Something, a gray-haired hatchet-faced woman who wore severe eyeglasses and identified herself as a “Pain Therapist”. Her wife was a younger, softer Latina named Concha. Nancy’s opening gambit as a new neighbor was to announce her plan to build an 8 foot wooden fence between our houses, for “privacy.”

We objected to the fence project, and asked the Lesbians to reconsider. Phonecalls were exchanged. Tempers were riled, and property lines were debated. Concha called and told us that her husband would no longer speak to us: she needed time to Heal. We named her Doctor Pain

Doctor Pain hired a pair of weathered Lesbian Workmen to erect the fence. One had a crewcut and the other spoke in an awful Scandinavian accent. I befriended the Workmen, since they liked Laurie Anderson, but engaged in bitter combat with Dr. Pain. The fence went up, blocking the light and lending the effect of a prison compound.

Time passed and I tried not to look at Dr. Pain when I saw her outside. Her voice was piercing and nasal, her teeth looked like they wanted to bite you. We smelled incense coming from her backyard, and wondered if she was burning human sacrifices. I turned my anger toward the big gnarled stick on her front porch…..a “staff” of some kind, around seven feet long, perhaps a trophy from a hike somewhere.

I ranted about the stick to everyone. I hatched bizarre plots involving the stick, and asked friends for advice. Someone suggested that I burn the stick, and send little charred pieces of it to Dr. Pain. Someone else told me to kidnap it, and demand a ransom if they ever wanted to see it alive again. Finally, I ran next door and moved the stick from the left side of the porch to the right side. I was dizzy with adrenaline. In the morning, the stick was back on the left.

At Christmas, my son wondered what to get for me. I asked  him to get me the stick. When he brought it up to our door, he held it aloft, and I tried to sing the theme from “Rocky.” It was a joyous, shining moment; he is the best son a mother could ask for!

More time passed and it was Christmas again. I was desperate for a piece of typing paper and since Dr. Pain’s car was gone, I went next door to ask Concha for a piece of paper. She led me into the house, which was filled with vintage images of saints. Shit!!!!! I told her that I also collect old Catholic Icons, and we bonded under the gaze of St. Theresa. “Come over to my house some time, and see my stuff,” I gushed. On Christmas Eve, Concha appeared at my door with her parents, who were visiting for the holiday. I invited her in warmly, forgetting until that instant that her stick was on display in my bedroom. My life flashed before my eyes. Somehow, I mumbled that the bedroom was messy, and managed to hide the Lesbian Stick under my bed just before she walked in to see my Saints.

Dr. Pain split up with Concha, who stayed on alone for a while before they sold the house. Before she left, Concha and I hugged. I’m sure she found a better looking Lesbian to share her life with. And the stick is leaning in a corner of my bedroom, along with the smaller sticks that Dr. Pain put out on her porch, in a futile effort to replace the original one.

Merry Christmas!

Starving Girl

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006

Here is Starving Girl, a model on the Shopbop website. Now that I’ve seen her in a swimsuit, I’m really worried about her.

She looks kind of Iranian. Her parents probably came here in the 70s, to escape that crazy Ayatollah. Now, for all their trouble, they have a daughter who won’t eat.

Eat, Starving Girl!

Stupid Husbands

Thursday, December 14th, 2006

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The subject of old TV shows came up while we were driving home from somewhere. I made some remark about how sitcoms always portray husbands as morons. My husband pointed out that in “I Love Lucy,” the very first sitcom, Ricky Ricardo was portrayed as the brains of the family.

I thought it over for two or three seconds and disagreed. I know Lucy was daffy and got into mischief, but it’s not like Ricky ever knew what to do about anything. She worried about making him mad, but in her sneaky way, she was really the boss.

Now my husband got into it. Ricky owned his own club! How could a stupid guy do that? he demanded. I insisted that this didn’t prove anything. Ricky seemed like kind of a dim bulb, and that was how the audience was meant to view him. My husband yelled, I mean said, “I DISAGREE.”

Later, I searched the internets for some hint as to what the general consensus was about Ricky Ricardo. Strangely, there was no analysis of Ricky’s character anywhere, just the usual crap about the real Lucy and Desi partnership.

I asked my nephew (an  intellectual AND a longshoreman) what he thought about Ricky. He agreed with me. Ha! Case Closed.

But the subject of stupid husbands came up again last week, when some women I know admitted to hiding their purchases from their husbands. Even today, no one wants to make Ricky mad!   One of the women had been married for 40 years, and she still had to pretend her new Chanel sunglasses were a gift.

There must be a lot of stupid husbands out there. And a lot of women willing to be stupid, too. Thank god my husband is smart enough to let me buy whatever I goddamn please, even if he’s wrong about Ricky.

Size Does Matter

Wednesday, December 13th, 2006

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This  is a great handbag, perfect if you like to carry around your refrigerator. Or if you’re running away from home. You can get it here, for $948, but hurry, it’s a limited edition.

State Your Price

Tuesday, December 12th, 2006

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Last night, I was talking about movies with my friend Mark. He mentioned a new romantic comedy with Cameron Diaz, Jude Law, Jack Black and Kate Winslet. We agreed that it sounded really awful. I asked him if he’d see it for $50, knowing he’d say no.

He said he would see it for $100, but then raised it to $120. This has  reminded me of  similar conversations I’ve had: I know I’ve set my price for seeing a Robin Williams movie at $500. I might see an animated movie with Robin Williams for $120, but not for less.

I wouldn’t watch “The Passion of the Christ” for $1 million. I just don’t need the money that much. I wouldn’t see “Hostel,” of any of the “Saw” movies for any price. It’s not  only   moral grounds. I simply couldn’t take it.

I think I could see a film with Kate Hudson, but not if Owen Wilson was in it, too. That would probably take $500, minimum.

Anybody care to name their price for any movies? I’m really interested!

  

Links, Godammit

Sunday, December 10th, 2006

My People:

Red Stapler

Dr. Ratbite Larue

Max Wolf Music

Phyllis Willis-Barbour

kottke.org

My Obsessions:

Intermix

Le Train Bleu

Net-A-Porter

Shopbop

The Death Penalty

The Kircher Society

Last Meals

Arts & Letters Daily

Language Log

Celebrity Gossip

Yoox

Jargol

Vivienne Westwood

A Terrible Story

Saturday, December 9th, 2006

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Last month in a Bronx apartment, a man slit the throat of his 12 year old son, who was autistic. The father, Jose Stable, went outside to set off a fire alarm and waited for the authorities. When they arrived, he reportedly stated: “I’ve just terminated the life of my autistic son. I couldn’t take it anymore.”

Is there anything to be learned from this story? The boy, whose name was Ulysses, weighed 280 pounds, and was by all accounts difficult to control. The mother (a crack addict) seems to have left the scene 10 years ago. Stable has an arrest record. The Administration of Child Services had paid a visit, to find out why the boy was missing school. Someone recommended Agency Services for the family, but there was no follow up.

The names in this story are weirdly symbolic, aren’t they? I don’t understand the significance but it can’t be good.

I worry about a “society” that allows a situation like this to occur. I can’t begin to process the misery and desperation involved. Imagine struggling with an aggressive, socially deficient child who outweighed you and had to be restrained from eating grass? Imagine it every day and night, alone together in an apartment, year after year?

Imagine being born “wired differently”, unable to filter sensory stimuli, and unable to communicate your anxiety. Imagine feeling alone in your bubble, frustrated and confused. No way to comfort yourself besides eating.

I would like to turn back time and get help for this father and child. Early intervention for Ulysses, which I have seen do wonders for kids who were once thought to be unreachable. Respite services for Jose, who could then take a break now and then from his daily challenges.

I’m heartbroken by this story. I want everyone to “get involved” any time they think they see a situation like this brewing. If a neighbor is screaming at their kid constantly, offer to baby-sit. If you think a kid is being mistreated, call and report it. If you’re wrong, no one will die.

God bless poor Ulysses. And poor Jose.

  

Today’s Complaints

Thursday, December 7th, 2006

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I hate the Vibe Girl, and I can’t be the only one. Ugh! She is the model of choice on “Vibe,” a fashion website that sells all the usual brands. I can’t stand her big implants, which play a prominent role in all the clinging tops, as you can see. Even though I hate her, I find that I miss her when they use a girl without implants. Such is life, eh?

I also hate the new Shopbop Girl, with the platinum hair. It’s a look that says “Mod Old Lady” which I’m just not feeling.

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Why can’t they all be Kate Moss?