30 August 2005

Empowering ourselves, one pill at a time

According to the Washington Post, the FDA has postponed ruling on whether to allow access without prescription to the so-called morning after pill, Plan B. In a move that the Post describes as a common practice for the Bush administration, FDA Commissioner Lester M. Crawford announced the delay late last Friday.


"At 3 p.m., when Congress was out of town and millions of Americans (and more than a few journalists) were headed for the beach or the mountains, the agency sent out an e-mail message that it would be holding a news conference at its Rockville headquarters one hour later."


With a mere seven journalists present, the agency said it was delaying ruling " because of unresolved regulatory issues."


The Post , however, had this to say regarding the administration's late-hour antics:


"The Bush administration is hardly the first to release potentially bad or controversial news late on Fridays—when news operations, and the public, tend to be least tuned in—but it has emerged as one of the more consistent practitioners.


"On Friday, June 10, for instance, the Agriculture Department announced at 8 p.m. that mad cow disease had possibly been found in a second American animal—news that could upset the beef market. The timing was unusual because the animal had first been tested more than six months before.


"When USDA released the news two weeks ago that the animal did indeed have mad cow disease, it was again on a Friday afternoon when many reporters couldn't make it to the department headquarters, and a teleconference was set up. After a statement from Secretary Mike Johanns, reporters began asking questions. Soon after, the telephone hookup failed and was never restored."


It remains to be seen what the outcome will be regarding Plan B, but, like so many other laws and regulations made throughout history in regard to women's health, it's time for women to take matters into their own hands no matter what the final decision, as they have done for centuries.


In the early 1900s Margaret Sanger pioneered birth control access and information in an age when women routinely gave birth to a child a year, even though she was jailed on many occasions and was forced to flee to Europe.


In 1969 in Chicago women created a system where women could call " Jane," and get information and referral to a safe, albeit illegal, abortion.


This year it's Plan B, which prevents implantation of a fertilized egg, and therefore pregnancy, if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. While many believe it's another form of abortion—considering a fertilized egg a child—the fact is that many women, when faced with a potential unplanned and unwanted pregnancy, will decide to terminate. Plan B alleviates the need for an actual, surgical abortion, in addition to the cost and emotional distress the procedure inevitably brings.

Every woman should keep Plan B in their medicine cabinet, if not for themselves (c'mon, we've all had a condom break, or realized we've forgotten to take the pill one day), but for their fellow women. Many pharmacies, and even states, do not carry Plan B, and outright refuse to provide it. Others go so far as to deny women access to birth control. How far back have we slid?


It's up to women to take care of other women, and ensure that if the panicked phone call comes at 7 a.m. from one of your girlfriends, freaking out over the night before, you've got her covered. It's illegal, yes, but it's also immoral for a bunch of rich white men to dictate women's lives. Or, in lieu of that, direct her to this Website.

29 August 2005

Congratulations Chris & Becky!

Ah, weddings...

I hate them.

Don't ask me why, I find them tedious and hard to stomach, and I generally go out of my way to avoid them.

(A feat I’ve managed to do personally for 34 years as well! muwahaah! Ahem…. )

However, I've been exceptionally lucky to have been to two this year—one for what was technically Jon and Darrell's one year wedding anniversary (since they’d gotten hitched in SF the year before), and Chris & Becky's shindig this weekend—which have not only been tolerable, but a lot of fun.

Too much fun, some might say!

Of course, it doesn’t take two folks pledging to sit across from the breakfast table every day for the rest of their lives to get me all excited. In fact, all it really takes is some cheesy ’80s music, some merlot, and a few of my friends.

And Saturday provided the perfect combination, and as I acted out the part of Jennifer Beals in Flashdance as the deejay played “Maniac,” and Darrell and I sang A-ha’s “Take on Me” a wee bit too dramatically (I think we missed our Broadway calling!), I found myself glad they’d decided to not so much take the plunge—they’re perfect for each other, I can’t imagine it any other way—but to invite me.

Because, I’ll be honest, I was feeling pretty low when we arrived at the Powel House for the ceremony, and nearly lost it when the part of the vows mentioned, “These are the hands of your best friend.”

But the ceremony was simple and very unique and very cool. (The only other time I’ve had to stand shoulder to shoulder with a stranger and turn and get all peace/love/happiness was in church, but this was way better minus the fire and brimstone!)

And, unlike the familial nuptial freakshow nightmare I’d dodged the weekend before, I felt really good to see these two say, “I do.”

Because after all, if you can’t gather your friends and family around you in joy as you pledge to stick together come hell or high water ’til death do you part, don’t you think your life raft may already be starting to sink?

The Germans slay me!

I think the Germans are brilliant, especially following a piece in Der Spiegel that I highly recommend:
"It's all because of Cindy Sheehan -- a mother whose son Casey died in the war in Iraq -- and her disgruntlement with the ongoing violence there. For weeks, she has been besieging the ranch near Crawford where US President George W. Bush has been spending his astonishingly lengthy vacation. With the unassailable authority of a grieving mother, Sheehan asks the question that the rest of America is also beginning to ask: For what, exactly, are our children dying?"

New Orleans' skeletons to roam free

So, Katrina's kicking the south's ass: water pumps have quit in New Orleans, Mississippi 's getting drowned, and soon, according to the Associated Press via the Freep, corpses, chemicals and raw crap should be floating around the French Quarter and beyond.


"When Hurricane Katrina hits New Orleans today, it could turn one of America's most charming cities into a vast cesspool tainted with toxic chemicals, human waste and even coffins released by floodwaters from the city's legendary cemeteries."


Referring to the levees that hold the water out of the city as turning the city into a giant bowl of toxic goo, the piece gives the comforting news that, "The nightmare scenario gets worse: sewers could back up, spreading disease like malaria, cholera, tuberculosis, West Nile Virus and dengue fever, all of which pay calls at one of the nation's biggest and oldest ports. Coffins could pop out of the shallow ground. And toxic chemicals could join the mix if petrochemical plants to the west break up."




My favorite quote, however, is from One News in New Zealand:


"Artist Matt Rinard, who owns a business in the French Quarter, holed up on the fifth floor of a Canal Street hotel and watched the storm roll in.


He said pieces of sheet metal and plywood, billboards and pieces of palm trees flew down Canal, which borders the Quarter, as huge gusts of wind blew through the city.


'It's blustery. You can see the speed of it now, it's unbelievable," he said. "The power went out about an hour and a half ago and so now I'm just watching the occasional dumbass walking down Canal Street.'"

28 August 2005

U.S. planted evidence in Lockerbie

Mags forwarded me an article tonight on a story that is very close to my heart: the Dec. 21, 1988 Lockerbie bombing of Pan Am flight 103, which killed 270 people—259 in the air and 11 on the ground.

Following a lengthy trial, on Jan. 31, 2001, Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, a Libyan, was convicted of murder. He has always maintained his innocence.

A piece in the U.K. Scotsman may back that assertion up:

“A former Scottish police chief has given lawyers a signed statement claiming that key evidence in the Lockerbie bombing trial was fabricated.

“The retired officer—of assistant chief constable rank or higher—has testified that the CIA planted the tiny fragment of circuit board crucial in convicting a Libyan for the 1989 mass murder of 270 people.”

Having spent time in Lockerbie, staying with and interviewing countless residents, the overwhelming feeling regarding the bombing, 17 years on, is that it is a neverending saga, a story that sees news crews descend upon the town whenever any bit of information is learned regarding the bombing.

They have never been allowed to move on.

“An insider told Scotland on Sunday that the retired officer approached them after Megrahi's appeal—before a bench of five Scottish judges—was dismissed in 2002.

The insider said: ‘He said he believed he had crucial information. A meeting was set up and he gave a statement that supported the long-standing rumours that the key piece of evidence, a fragment of circuit board from a timing device that implicated Libya, had been planted by US agents.’”

“The case is starting to unravel largely because when they wrote the script, they never expected to have to act it out. Nobody expected agreement for a trial to be reached, but it was, and in preparing a manufactured case, mistakes were made.”

And this, I fear, will only make things worse. Not only is our government—surprise, surprise—guilty of fabricating (or, in this case, planting) evidence to serve a political agenda, the truth of what happened, and who’s at fault, is still unknown, tearing open fresh wounds and keeping everyone involved in the tragedy, both in Scotland and the U.S., from moving on and healing.

Hate: It's the New Black

I have a hard time with extreme emotions. Good or bad, when something sends your psyche in one direction or the other with such force it causes almost physical pain, it just seems like not such a good thing to me. Kind of like a large sundae – a regular sized one is awesome, but too much of something and you’re yakking hot fudge through your nostrils.

Unfortunately, right now I am filled with one such extreme emotion: hate.

A mixture of anger, rage, sadness and total disappointment have culminated in the desire to express myself via a lead pipe. Fortunately, for myself and my criminal record, and the object of my hatred, I’m probably not going to follow through. But, we all need our fantasies, don’t we?

Of course, blood and gore fantasies aside, the fact remains that when someone in your life you love and trust turns out to be the polar opposite of what you’d thought they were, and they’d represented themselves to be, it’s devastating, and makes you question everything from who they actually are, to who you are and what’s wrong with you to allow yourself to be put in this situation.

That’s where I’m at right now, and I cannot even begin to fathom how long it’s going to take me to get back to center and who I remember I am.

But, at least I know who and what I’m not, and take comfort in the fact that I’m not a self-centered manipulative alcoholic who either cannot remember what I have or have not done or said, or choose to change history to better mesh with the version I’d rather have (tell me, which is more embarrassing? or less?).

Someone who cannot hold a job, friends or lovers save for the one person who is just as much a manipulative loser as myself, who all my friends and family dislike so much we had to get married in secret (Although we did tell our friends, just not our family members, what we were going to do) and, when we became pregnant, the universal response was, “God that sucks.”

And I’ve never consciously dragged anyone down with me in a feeble attempt to run from the pain-ridden, disastrous past I’ve created, only to turn around and fuck it up yet again, only this time for good.

Because, I take small comfort in the fact that I have learned, over the years, that the mantra, “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence” is not the rule to live by, and the demons will always follow, sitting at the foot of the bed, waiting to nudge you awake at 3 a.m., not matter what continent you’re on.

And not matter how lame it is, I always have a job, and my family and my friends who will gather around me to comfort me and cheer me up because, as neurotic as I can be, I have always been, and will hopefully always be, myself: drunk, sober, happy, sad, funny, annoying, making a fool of myself out on the dance floor. (see: Congrats Chris & Becky)

I just wish I didn’t have to feel such anger, hurt and resentment. But soon my city will be free of the west coast bullshit mindfuck, and the only other thing I want to know about the object of my hate is that he’s dead, however many years from now that may be. Although he’s certainly halfway there on his own….

26 August 2005

I'm Matt Taibbi's biggest fan!

Okay, so, one of my favorite journos -- Matt Taibbi -- has a piece in Rolling Stone about Cindy Sheehan.

I can't decide if I aspire to be him, or to kidnap him a la Misery and force him to write funny shit for me all day long....

His writing makes Mark Morford look like he's trying too hard...

Maybe I need to kidnap them both (Mags, you got the rope ready?!) and make them out-write each other all day long! Yeah!!!

Crawford, the home of President George W. Bush, is a sun-scorched hole of a backwater Texas town -- a single dreary railroad crossing surrounded on all sides by roasted earth the color of dried dog shit. There are scattered clumps of trees and brush, but all the foliage seems bent from the sun's rays and ready at any moment to burst into flames.

The moaning cattle along the lonely roads sound like they're begging for their lives. The downtown streets are empty. Just as the earth is home to natural bridges, this place is a natural dead end -- the perfect place to drink a bottle of Lysol, wind up in a bad marriage, have your neck ripped out by a vulture.

Death by derailleur

Okay, so, being the karmic disaster courting sourpuss I am, I've thought for a long time that drivers' license tests should include an IQ portion, along with a gauge of just how much common sense each potential driver possesses.


Granted, not that I haven't done stupid shit while behind the wheel, not even including the uber-stupid coffee/radio/cell phone trinity I employ on an embarrassingly regular basis.


I'm talking about not actually paying attention to what's going on outside the thousand-plus pound hunk of metal that is totally, and utterly, under your control.


Like looking out for cyclists.


Now, my bike ain't all that, but no matter how heavy it might be, it does not even begin to come close to the potential for death and dismemberment every dumbass behind the wheel possesses each time they put their foot on the accelerator.


Yesterday's ride reminded me of that, and after berating dumbass driver No. 999 I realized it's hopeless, and before long I'm simply going to replace the frame pump with a shotgun.


Unfortunately, and it's not even a full moon, it was pedestrians and other cyclists who were the recipients of most of my ire. Having tweaked a handful of old back injuries earlier in the week pretending I was Lance Armstrong in the Pyrenees, I was relegated to the relatively flat, geezer lands of the Schuykill trail, which is approximately 8 miles around and paved …


… thus making it fertile breeding ground for all manner of potential Darwin award winners employing various modes of transport – bikes, roller blades and, of course, feet.


Unfortunately, unlike the metal beasts I've grown accustomed to weaving around and (usually) avoiding, the human obstacle is not only far less predictable than the industrial behemoth, it feels pain.


And is breakable.


When some idiot steps in front of me I always think of the time when a fellow messenger (back in the day, y'all – I'm still a deskmonkey) hit a woman who stepped off the Market Street curb without looking … and ruptured her spleen. (In a rare show of SF cop coolness, the officer at the scene slipped a ticket into her handbag as they carted her away…)


Either way, there seemed to be an inordinate number of Sunday riders/skaters/walkers for a Thursday evening, and by the time I screamed at the trio of cyclists on Huffys riding three across to " MOVE OVER" as I barreled toward them, my calm, soothing ride was just a figment.


Especially, after yelling at them to get out of the goddamned way, I heard them scream as they crashed into one another, novices unable to control their two-wheeled metal any better than idiots in cars …


… and I laughed.

24 August 2005

Current TV still sucks

I still hate Current TV. In fact, I hate it more and more every day, as I'm clicking through hundreds of channels with nothing on, looking for just a wee oasis of calm, cool, collected assurance that it sucks, yeah, but only in the U.S.


Unfortunately, bastards at Current TV responded to my hatred for their piece of shit "product" with the following:




I wanted to let you know that I received your email. We appreciate all feedback. NWI had ardent fans, but ultimately not enough of them. Please know that I definitely understand why you're disappointed. For CBC programming, check out their site at www.cbc.ca.  


I know that they plan on streaming videos on their website. If they are not offering a particular program that you would like, it might be worth a shot to contact the folks at their site to petition them to offer more. You can reach them at input@cbc.ca.



"Current TV Drone"


Blargh. I will not contact NWI, I shouldn't have to. Everything was fine until Al Gore decided to, again, fuck shit up for the rest of us.


Instead, I would like anyone and everyone to contact Current TV (lower right hand corner. Fuckwits appear to be hiding behind small e-mail font size…) and tell them how bad they suck. And, maybe, pass this along to them.

23 August 2005

It's only a felony if it's not adding to productivity

Ooookay, it’s getting really weird now in a sci-fi, growing ever more disturbing twinge of pain in belly warning of catastrophic Ridley Scott-esque future where cars fly and people are just milling about like droids in order to perpetuate the myth that we are still human beings.

I’m talking about the latest potential, legal, pill the men (and, of course, women) in the white lab coats are developing to help up live fuller, more productive lives …

… as we wander, zombie-like, from shit job to shit job.

As reported in
Forbes, “Researchers at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., say an experimental drug called CX717 temporarily improved performance and reversed the effects of sleep deprivation in the brains of monkeys.”

It seems good ol’ CX717 boosts the neurotransmitter glutamate, essentially causing our gray matter to jump-start itself, bringing work performance following the human equivalent of three days of sleep deprivation “back to normal levels.’”

This frightens me. Quite frankly, I’m all for sleep. I love sleep. I think sleep is the best thing in the world; I’d do more of it if I could. In fact, my absolute fantasy is waking up well-rested with no alarm clock, nothing to force me to get out from under my Ikea dead-duck fluff blankie into the cold, harsh reality of life, with, ideally, someone else under the duvet with me to keep me there for as many hours as I’d like.

Yet somehow I don’t think this is what the researchers had in mind. In fact, call me a conspiracy theorist, but I’m thinking something far more sinister. If costs a lot of money to develop new drugs and therapies — this has got to have a bottom-line friendly side-effect.

Forbes, and the researchers themselves, back me up on this theory: “A drug that could reverse the effects of sleep deprivation would be regarded by some as a breakthrough in helping health professionals, shift workers, military personnel and others required to function at top level while coping with sleep deficits, the researchers said.”

And that, my friends, is the scariest part of all. If I were a scumbag CEO head honcho looking to increase profits and productivity without actually having to hire more bodies (and thus, pay out for more of everything — from benefits to toilet paper in bathrooms, while still insuring my multi-billion dollar paycheck and golden parachute if it all, ultimately, goes to hell) I’d find a way to make more stuff with less workers.

And, until robots can effectively take our places, let’s create a nice little pill, give it a catchy name — CX717, practically sings R2D2 — and watch all the workers bees scramble to get things done!

I wonder, though, if the long term side effects, such as hallucinations, rotten teeth and homicidal rage, are the same as with this little miracle’s street version … a.k.a. speed.

19 August 2005

Milk Trays and Mark Darcy

There is a bloody gorgeous god! Praise be to a higher power, Cadbury chocolates and Helen Fielding: The Independent in London has started running Bridget Jones’ Diary again, the original column that spawned the books, movies and saved countless singletons such as myself from self-induced pathetic misery, channeling it, instead, into Bridget and her eternal quest for the one and only thing that we modern women cannot do on our own: true love.

Ironically, I was at a used book store last week, and bought the original Bridget Jones’ Diary, which I loaned out years ago and, of course, never got back. (I also loaned out the second, The Edge of Reason, to a certain Mr. Jones of the Nile … ahem …) I’ve spent the last week sporadically reading it, laughing out loud as I lay in my bedroom, which has now become my sanctuary of sorts thanks to the addition of a lovely futon couch recently repossessed from the clutches of someone who would have used it to snog someone other than myself. (Thus, making it imperative comfy bed/couch be returned, unsoiled by vile horrid bitchy cow, to its rightful owner.)

The column appears every Thursday in both the print and online versions, according to an article in the NY Times, which, unfortunately, is the only bit of info you’re going to get for free on this little publishing pre-Christmas miracle. That is, except for me, who, in desperation, dragged out the Visa card and paid £1 for the pleasure of laughing, feeling like I’d reconnected with a long lost friend.

And, it seems that friend is still suffering the same unfortunate trials and tribulations. She and Mark Darcy have split (am firmly of the mind that, had Pride & Prejudice had a sequel, Mr. Darcy would also prove himself to be truly unbearable and a long, drawn out and painful breakup would invariably ensue, followed by various romps in the hay, or, I guess considering the time, walks in the park, with Elizabeth crumpling into a teary mess the moment she got in her room, drowning her sorrows in copious amounts of tea and creating needlework pieces the size of barns).

Daniel is still a horny whoring cad, and by the end of it Bridget, Jude and Shazzer are all on their way to the 24-hour pharmacy to buy a pregnancy test:

Wednesday 17th August
Eggs left: 0 probably. Years left till can no longer have children: 0. Percentage by which likelihood of having children decreases daily: 500. Minutes spent thinking about Meera Syal: 4,000

8.55am. Am peri-menopausal. Whole thing is so horrific that cannot entertain reality of same or tell anyone. My periods have suddenly stopped without me having any children. Have just spent two hours sitting bolt upright at laptop, frenziedly attempting to get through all 132,0000 exclamation mark-strewn sites thrown up by Googling "menopause" - even very word gives me shiver of fear. Searching through Hotflush.co.uk, Pituitaryworld.com etc. for reassurance that am far too young for this to be happening.

Hate being a woman. We are biologically oppressed race, going along normally like men thinking would be nice to have children one day, but not yet, then suddenly: "Blup, sorry, you can't any more hahahaha."

Of course, when I really stop to think about it, I have to ask myself, “Self, how is it, a decade on, you’re still identifying with pudgy, drunken, chain-smoking helplessly insecure and neurotic Bridget freakin’ Jones?!!?”

The answers, I fear, are too frightening to contemplate…

At least without a few alcohol units to dull the pain…

16 August 2005

Feedback on your channel

Dear Current TV,

I cannot believe you replaced my beloved News World International with the visual equivalent of a meth-addicted chimpanzee. I attempted to watch your channel, and, quite frankly, all it did was give me the overwhelming urge to take myself to the nearest department store to swath myself in brightly colored synthetic clothes.


Please stop torturing those of us who actually prefer to get real, solid information on what's going on in the world via the TV. No one needs mindless trivial fluff like top Google searches flashed, rat-a-tat, into already tired from spending 8+ hours on the Internet — and, ironically, Google — retinas.


Attempting to force-feed me mindless bullshit in small, MTV-sized chunks is not only annoying and homicidal-rage inducing, it's insulting. Thankfully for me any and all the 18-34 year old poor saps who happen to pause accidentally on your channel, thus getting sucked into an ocular vortex of vacuous fluff that seems more likely to induce seizures than interest, it's likely to fail miserably.


Unfortunately, I'm not sure that will mean I'll get my NWI back.

Current TV sucks ass

God, what a pile of fetid, vacuous crap has landed on what was, until just days ago my beloved News World International.

It was the only channel I could still safely watch without fearing the big-haired loud brash and overly abrasive (read: ugly American) talking heads going on and on about dead angelic cheated-upon pregnant mothers-to-be, deadly Armaggen-like and obviously satanic thunder storms, the killer bacteria that's laying in wait on every surface — " NO! DON'T TOUCH THE REMOTE IT WILL GET YOU!" — to give me cholera gangrene flesh eating flu-like bird/monkey/pig pox flu, and a whole host of other random, pointless bullshit to distract me from the fact that the cost of living is in a photo-finish meteoric rise, all neck-and-neck-like, with interest rates, gas prices and the large-size tom yum soup at Vientiane Café on Baltimore Avenue.

There is no longer any refuge as that dull, boring, stiff-as-a-board, loser motherfucker Al Gore dared to replace my beloved NWI with, well, the biggest pile of stupid mindless pointless bullshit to fill a television screen since the last presidential news conference:
Current TV.

(Oh, and don't forget he's also married to evil wench Tipper (hellooo! PMRC?!!?!!? How quickly we forget the 1990s helmet-haired cow who so brilliantly came up with the idea of those lame-assed stickers to put on CDs, which really made a difference, don't you think?).)

Oh sure, CNN International is okay, if you can find it and you still have to sort; BBC has news, but in between the fourteen gazillion house fixer-upper shows they air daily (after living in London I know that there's far worse, albeit entertaining, programming — why do we get stuck with people who insist on constructing kitchen blinds out of old straws and manky plastic PVC pipe when
V. Graham Norton has half-naked men in leather bondage suits?!!?).

Nothing was as soothing in a catastrophic "See, the whole rest of the world is going to shit too, honey, now go get another glass of wine and we'll soothe you with our rounded Canadian vowels…" way as NWI, always there to give me the perspective from outside the good ol' U.S. of A.

But now… now, it's all over. Now, clicking on what the Goremeister has devised, in his brilliant mind, to be the uber-channel for 18-24 year olds, I'm reminded of… oh, what is it? Oh, I know – the pointless filler they play on airplanes when you're boarding and shuffling around trying to shove your carry-on into a space the size of a tic-tac and find a germ-ridden blanket, or that certain department stores show on an endless loop in the "juniors" department in an effort to appear more hip, despite the fact that their most high-profile designer used to run around in high heels chasing crooks on bad daytime TV in her heyday.

There is no programming, no content, nothing of any real interest that cannot be figured out by spending 30 seconds on the Internet, and the pace, which is supposed to appeal to these wunderkind teen- and 20-somethings, is just annoying, stupid, and it's obvious it's trying waaaay too hard.

But then, what do you expect from the man who is so in touch with the younger generation, he split the 18-24 vote in 2000 with Bush.

Ah well, since he invented the Internet let's hope he's familiar with
And in the meantime, give me back my news!!!

12 August 2005

Candy Coated Mind Control

Today is an oddly taxing day, mentally—the end of the week but not the end of the stress, as I’ve got a rush-hour 200-plus mile journey north that will simply stretch my long and mentally draining week into the wee hours.

So, it makes sense, then, that my early a.m. news infusion routine seemed to be about the joy of stuffing one’s face to avoid the painful fact that we are all, indeed, joined at the ever-widening hip on the downward spiral along this mortal coil, and I find myself feeling nauseous and hungry at the same time.

First, SF uber writer man Mark Morford tackles the Jedi mind control tricks researchers are perfecting to get American porkers to put down the Twinkie:
Convincing them they got sick when they were kids on fat-laden junk food.

Now, I have painful, gut-wrenching memories of getting sick on chicken chow mein, but, except for the chicken part, I’m not adverse to Chinese food.

Unless, that is, my very aversion to meat and meat-products was, in fact, induced by aforementioned youngster puke-fest.

Yet somehow I just can’t help but think that the more ideal sitch is to just eat less crap, and move about a bit more.
And no, shifting your corpulent mass to a more centered position on the ass-donut in your SUV in order to reach out the window for your McFattyPatty-burger and fat fucker fries ain’t what I’m talking about, porky.

But, then again, maybe it’s a battle we’re all doomed to lose one way or the other. I mean, for chrissakes, M&Ms has just introduced its latest addition to its ever-expanding bottom… er…. product line: 55 percent bigger adult M&Ms.

GEE! That’s so exciting, because, you know, when I was but a wee one, thinking about how cool and wonderful it would be when I was finally all grown up, I did, indeed, lament the loss of such youthful pursuits as hopscotch, Tom&Jerry and, of course, small girl-sized candy.


Yet, according to the PR hacks in charge of this candy-coated train wreck:

"Adults have said they like a bigger bite-sized product with bigger bite-sized taste," said Martyn Wilks, president for the Masterfoods USA snack food division. "This is definitely for a subset of our target market."

You’re fucking kidding me!!!
What a load of horse shit!

Not to mention the intelligence insulting oxymoron: bigger bite-sized taste.
Erm, so, yeah, if M&Ms at their original size are considered bite-sized, then the big bertha version must be, oh, I dunno: too big to be bite-sized and therefore considered, what, like snarf sized??!!?

It makes my head spin, and my wallet clamp shut like an angry sphincter (play with that visual for a while, why dontcha’!)

But hey, according to the Times, at least the money-grubbing whores at Hackettstown, N.J.-based Masterfoods have our best interests at heart:
not only are the new fatty-blatty candy balls bigger, they go along with every hue and shade of the average suburbanite’s Toyota Camry:

“And the colors of Mega M&M's are meant to appeal to more mature audiences; the regular hues like red, green, yellow and blue are being supplanted by shades like maroon, gold, beige and teal.”

I hear they’re planning on expanding their offerings to include matching muu-muus.

11 August 2005

Axe fails to fall on CBGB ... for now.

I'm lazy, so I'll let Mags give the down and dirty on the judge's ruling, stating that CBGB cannot be evicted simply for noticing they owed a shitload of money to their landlord.
We can all breathe easy...
At least for the moment. The lease still expires at the end of this month.

03 August 2005

Baby Gap attacks CBGB

Uber-punk club CBGB is about to be shut down, and a cadre of rockers are rallying around the dank landmark to save it from certain eviction on Aug. 31.
Seems it's the victim of the plague of gentrification, which has long been rampant in New York and is spreading to almost every corner of the country where someone stands to make a buck by bringing in Starbucks and Baby Gap to adjacent corners.
It was only a matter of time before CBGB's tony digs on Bowery (the address being the desirable element, certainly not the black gooey interior!) caused the cash-induced salivation, but, am I being completely blasphemous here by pointing out that those desperate to save the rocking institution are themselves on the way out?

(Or at least their girdles are out -- whoa! Debbie! I think you got the order mixed up!)

Oh wait. I shouldn't slam them -- I'm not far behind!
Either way, the almost certain demise of a rock'n'roll institution should not be taken lightly, and the pocketbook behind it -- "a $25 million dollar a year group that receives over $15 million dollars from the city and state," according to the Save CBGB Web site -- seems more interested in the bottom line than a good bass line.
Of course, part of the irony is that this effort is to save a punk venue, the very notion of trying to preserve punk reeks of, oh I don't know, teenygoth'r mega-mall mecca Hot Topic instead of sweat, beer and cigarettes (slash that last one, goddamned anti-smoking lobby!).
Those trying to save the past should probably be careful, or they could wind up with CBGB's Hard Punk Rock Cafe!

02 August 2005

The end.

Well friends, as I sit here nursing a veeery large bottle of wine and pack of cigarettes, a line from Henry Rollins' stand-up gig keeps running through my head:

Just walk away.

Now, I'm sure that was in relation to something else, but I have taken that line to heart, and have made it my mantra at times when it seems to be the only tact.

And I have done it tonight.

The score:

Current "relationship": dead.
Me: alive.

Yes, folks, I thought I had it all figured out, but alas, dear whore-troll-bitch fate had other ideas for me. Alas, alone again am I, but the stronger for it, of course.

So, with that in mind, send me your chocolate, wine and Marlboro lights. And your love. And a strong, strapping single nubile Viking should you come across one: I'm in the market....

01 August 2005

Beware the Angry Vegan

So it seems I'm angry. Or so I've been told.

I can't imagine why...

I mean, externally, all I have to do is click on the latest news and I'm body-slammed with such shiny, happy snippets as " Bush appoints Bolton to U.N. while (those fat lazy overpaid motherfuckers in) Congress are (probably having anal with prostitutes on) recess (while the rest of us worker-bees don't get any vacation you lazy, piss-poor excuses for human beings)."

Good to know we have a system of checks and balances...

Thankfully, there's also good news: seems dead diet-guru chronic-halitosis-thanks-to-ketosis mega-glomerate Atkins Nutritionals has gone big, fat, pork-filled belly up.

Which means that all those people sitting around the Ponderosa all-you-can-eat artery-hardening fat-soaked meat products can now, again, be called what they truly are: greedy, gorging pigs.

Which also means they probably will not be asked to participate in the BeautifulPeople Web site, a jarringly superficial site that is at least refreshing in its upfront shallow vapidity.

(All I can think of is
Marilyn Manson when I see the site name ... )

Of course, it's Monday, which could be he biggest cause of my mental malaise.

Not like I haven't got room to whinge as I sit in my teeny, tiny dark, narrow cubicle (aptly named "The Bat Cave" by a fellow temp) doing the monkey-work for all the salaried worker-bees with phat benefits who have no problem delegating their shit work to me.

At first if was fun: no stress, no worries, out the door at 4:59 p.m., but once word got around that the poorly paid temp in the cave has a master's degree from a top communications school and experience to boot it was a free-for-all and suddenly I find myself with lots of work and responsibility, and none of the corporate perks that go with it – like some well-needed vacation time, sick time or decent benefits. (Oh, I got health insurance: Aetna. Need I say more??? The worst health insurance company on the planet in my experience …)

And so, Monday morning is like the cherry bomb topping on a big, full-fat chocolate-covered lactose laden ice cream sundae, keeping me up all night stressing over the fact that my very existence is a dead end.

I feel like I need to do something wild, something drastic, a big, proverbial fuck-you to the bitter jaded angst that's invading my psyche.

Unfortunately, I can't seem to think of anything … which makes me wonder, am I really that uninspired, or should I stop using the aluminum pots and pans?

Anyone else out there feel the same way, or is it just me?