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12/01 Direct Link
TOGA GOLF

I've been a golf instructor since I was eleven. Nothing prepared me for the emergence of Toga Golf among the young people in the Spring of 2012.

For you I suppose it's just something you hear about or see on tv late at night on the high channels. It's different--terribly different--for a professional like me.

I stood behind her, showing her how to properly swing. I put her hand on her waist ... on the naked skin of her waist. "Like this?" and her flesh hummed with her voice....

I think I'll become a lion-tamer instead.
12/02 Direct Link
The phone rang at two in the morning last night. Then it rang again. Expecting the worst I answered it.

"Hello, Jim. I just wanted to tell you: Sam's dead."

"Jim? Sam? I think you got the wrong number."

"Isn't this 532-6044?"

"Yeah. There's no Jim here."

"How long have you had this number?"

"About five years. I don't know any Jim."

"Oh. Well. His cat's finally died."

"What are you doing with his cat?"

"I dunno. I got it when we split up."

"And it's died."

"I just wanted him to know."

"I understand."

"She's dead."

"I'm very sorry."
12/03 Direct Link
Parody Without Source


Quigley took up the onion and examined it with a squeeze and a sniff.

"This is significant," he said. "I believe a celebrity must know more than he is telling us."

The vorticist laughed out loud. "Do you really expect this to solve anything? Do you?"

***

roman ā clef sans clef


Dabney looked in.

"Yeah, uh," he said. Then thought. He was always trying to think. And seldom succeeding. "What's going on?"

"I'm writing something down," I said.

"Oh. You going to be long?"

"Maybe twenty minutes more."

"Well. Could you come out? The dog's sick."
12/04 Direct Link
"A moment of absolute evil actualized in a matter of weeks, if not months."


Since I had it with me and since the police station was right across the street I took it in to show them.

"Look," I said to the staff sergeant, showing him the two-inch bolt.

"It's a bolt," reaching for it.

"Stop! It's a powerful bomb."

"You don't say." He looked closer.

"A Nazi wanted me blown up with it."

"My God."

"Can you dispose of this for me somehow?"

"We'll blow it up ourselves."

I went out. Five minutes later, there was a tremendous BOOM!
12/05 Direct Link
"I remember seeing him once, early in his career. He was very brave. How so? Well, he didn't have any act to speak of. He just stood there before us, with his presence shining. We murmured one to another, 'What's his act?' But no, he did nothing, he didn't do a thing to impress us, which was impressive in its own way; we didn't know what to make of him. Fully for eight minutes he stood there, defying us to throw things. Then he left the stage. It wasn't til fully three years later that we heard again of Satan."
12/06 Direct Link
It's that time again!

You know what time it is again!

It's the time of the Christmas Party!

It's time for me to wrap in on myself and be obsessed by what-ifs!

What will I say this time?

How will I get out of it?

What will I say if I'm asked if I'm going?

Will I say, "We'll see"?

Will I say, "I'd rather slash my wrists"?

I only have a week to wonder what I'll say or do!

A whole week of feeling dreadful!

A whole week of slinking around avoiding people!

One whole week!

Isn't Christmas wonderful???
12/07 Direct Link
EPIC ONE-LINER


I was just, you know, feeling down. Nothing seemed to be happening in my life. It all seemed so empty. So I came up with a plan: I'd upconvert my life! You know how on an iPod you can have a song recorded at 128 kbps, another at 192 kbps, and another at 256 kbps? Well, I figured I'd been living my life at one of the lower ones; so double the sample rate! All my experiences would go staight from SD to HD!

But, in the end, I realized I just didn't have the resolution for it.
12/08 Direct Link
In every university it's kept usually in the Department of the Dean; by "it" I mean the Big Book of Media Contacts.

When a newspaper, radio or tv station calls, a suitable commentator can be found to add gravitas to even the dullest story. On the other side, the universities consider it advertising, and take media performance into consideration for promotions and perqs.

The staff and the media both find they get richer the more dramatic and alarmist they are. It is a mutually parasitical relationship.

This, I believe, is one of the root causes of the global warming hoax.
12/09 Direct Link
"It was a dark and there was a storm on its way. At King and York I was waiting to cross from the southwest corner to the northwest corner. The opposing light had turned to amber. I looked to my left; a skateboarder was moving fast toward the intersection. He obviously couldn't make it in time. My pedestrian signal turned; I stepped out; SMASH! he ran into me. I was more prepared and he bounced onto the sidewalk. (The board went who-knew-where.) He got up, dazed. I went over and said, in my most schoolmarm, "You had to be stopped."
12/10 Direct Link
For myself I chose swimming trunks, coloured blue and orange. There's never much to say about men's swimming trunks. They had a springy waistband, and little mesh inside (a place to put a key?), and shallow pockets on each side.

She wore a single-piece suit. The back plunged down almost to her backbone. The cloth was sturdy, not translucent, and blue. The shoulders were about an inch wide, probably to prevent chafing. There's nothing worse than a chafing bathing suit, don't you agree? She'd bought it at a Simpsons store.

Together, we stepped from the cabaņa into the Sahara Desert.
12/11 Direct Link
Mary Hamilton just doesn't have enough to buy her kids anything special for Christmas.

MARY: The money just isn't there.

And who does she blame for her situation?

MARY: The government takes half my money!

Mary's not alone. In the last twelve months, real costs in the form of taxation have gone up over ten percent. So, where does it all go?

COUNCILLOR: We've got social sevices.

LITTLE GIRL: I get to swim for free!

But for Mary, the freebies mean one less gift, and a little more sadness all around.

MARY: It's frightening!

Maybe next year. Or the next.
12/12 Direct Link
Drig out the onions an chop em up, an if you can think of a song you better start now cause the nex bit is a big tough, cause you chop em all up and keep choppin til there be like a paste of onion gut, lotsa liquid will be all over the place so tilt up your thing an pour itall into a cup o some sort. Moren halfway there. So you got yer cup o onion all ready. You can fridgerate it here if you wanna. Okay, but you got it an it be all chopt up nice.
12/13 Direct Link
Isn't it strange? We're at a moment in time and we don't know what is going to happen next. Are we near the summit of knowledge, or are we barely in the foothills? And remember that a lot of things come out of left field. Who knew that Einstein (1905a) would lead to elevator doors not slamming shut on you?

And on a smaller scale: I'm tired of celebrating my birthday. I want to celebrate my deathday. Only problem is, I don't know what day of the year Death will come to me. "This could be my last time singing."
12/14 Direct Link
Having left the studio and out on the street, I thought really for the first time about what I'd done. The seventy-five dollars was warm in my pocket. Somewhere over thirty-five dollars an hour. Merely to stand naked. All the eyes in the room except for mine (which were pinned on a tree outside) saw beauty and blemish and beautiful blemish and blemished beauty up and down from my toes to my pussy to my hairline. I'd been told that these eyes would be concerned solely with the form of the thing that housed me. The form that housed me....
12/15 Direct Link
And it filled him as a rubber life-raft is filled by compressed air: we swim in metaphors. This was the undiscovered country of his word-scupting. To crouch near reality in its lair, one must set blinds of thatchy similitude. In other words, reality is replicated by barraging the enemy fiction with shots of leaden imagery. Thus taken like a tot in hand the reader believes as one believes in atmosphere the windy story. A story naked of metaphor is like ordinary nakedness: marred and flabby in parts. The journeys of all need colour and fabric and tricorns and even shoes!


12/16 Direct Link
PROBLEM

Let two gift-givers equal A and B. (Maybe I've complained about this before.) A has inadequate knowledge of B's desires and vice-versa. (Wait for the solution.) Therefore A will get B what he defectively believes B wants, and vice-versa. (There's a Hayekian proof in here.) And thus each will be disappointed, and value will be lost, most of the time. (It's a rough rule.)

I explained this to Malcolm and Nathan. All laid out as a proof, using an example, elegantly pointing to each of them in turn.

Nathan said, "So what do you think should be done instead?"
12/17 Direct Link
SOLUTION

Quickly: "When you're at someone else's house, take some of their stuff."

And they laughed! They dare to laugh!

I refined the sceme later. Give the giver the right of refusal three times; then the fourth would necessarily be the gift.

The beauty of this is that the taker will probably value the gift more than the giver, and vice-versa. Which exactly solves the problem. Both parties will, generally speaking, win (to the same degree that A and B in the problem lose).

I wonder if this can catch on. Oh, probably not. Gift-giving is done to mark territory.
12/18 Direct Link
Last night I dreamt I went to 274 Arden Dr. again....

It was 4:15 in the morning; I had to be up at 6:30....

I went up the stairs to the back right room....

My mother was watching a hockey game in the front right room....

I went in and asked her if she could turn it down....

She turned it down and I went back to the back right room....

I tried to sleep; I could still hear the game....

I went into the back left room....

I laid down foil to sleep upon....

Once again, 274 Arden Dr....
12/19 Direct Link
THE GIRL WITH THE PRURIENCE DENIAL

I'm going to write a book in which a whole lot of women are tortured and murdered. I'll have them whipped and I'll have them cut. They'll be hung from hooks and they'll have their heads cut off. They'll be raped and made to eat excrement. They'll be kept in darkness for weeks and dungeons for months. They'll have their children tortured and murdered in front of them. And then they'll all be dumped into garbage dumps and left there to rot forever.

But it'll be okay because I'm going to condemn these acts.
12/20 Direct Link
IF MEDICAL BREAKTHROUGHS WERE REPORTED LIKE PHYSICS BREAKTHROUGHS

"And now here's our Science Expert to tell us, really, what it all means."

"Right. Now, a scientist thinks he's got an HIV vaccine, and it's going to be tested in the next two or three years."

"Okay, then. But tell us, how will it really affect our lives?"

"Well, you never know what the consequences will be with such research. Immunology's knowledge will grow by leaps and bounds. Plus there's the fact that AIDS could be eradicated quite soon."

"Well, we'll take your word for it. Thanks for coming, Science Expert."
12/21 Direct Link
.... a noisy, wet street .... 1,000,000 cars all looking at me .... lights on the pavement, lights in the air, lights on the wing .... with the wet sky dripping down, and the moon is raining .... the ancient smell of worms, refusing to drown, on the crawl .... and the sinister hiss of speeding cars a long way away but close .... the rain's straight down to smudge my pencil .... seven citizens dressed for symphonies .... still the worms .... and the clouds high up in the darkness living only to damply disperse .... smoke's gone out.
12/22 Direct Link
AH, CHRISTMAS

My mother took me to the mall on December 18, 1969, which was a Thursday. Santa was there!

"Mommy, it's Santa!"

"Of course it is. Do you want to tell him what you want for Christmas?"

"Yeah!"

I sat on his knee and told him what I wanted. After that:

We walked down the mall. And there was Santa again!

"Santa!" I cried. Then I thought. "Mommy, there are two Santas. How is that?"

My mother said, "There's more than one of everybody. Santa especially.... Sssh.... There's more than one of me, too."

Everything followed from that point.
12/23 Direct Link
The fairy said, Why is everyone in this area so angry?
-Angry?
-Don't they like travelling by airplane?
-It's an efficient and safe method of covering vast distances in the minimum amount of time.
-But I get such a sense of violence. Are they ingrates?
-People who travel by air probably have other problems.
-Such as?
-Maybe they're going someplace to get divorced, maybe for another job, maybe even to commit a murder.
-Murder? Heavens!
-I'm confabulating.
-Well....
-They're complicated people with complicated problems.
-They'd maybe be happier if they didn't fly.
-Try telling them that.
-I guess they'd laugh.

12/24 Direct Link
Next day the fairy said, I've had a moment to look around. You're in a building of rooms but no kitchens.
-Yes. It's called a hotel. People stay temporarily.
-Very nice. Not filthy at all. Do you come here often?
-Never been here before.
-How did you know it was going to be nice?
-Hotels are almost always nice.
-Television, desk, lamps, radio, bed, toilet, shower. Why not live here all the time?
-It's expensive.
-Oh. Maybe if you owned a hotel you could live here.
-People who own hotels don't live in them.
-Why not?
-Everyone's always a stranger.

12/25 Direct Link
Next day the fairy said, Sure looks desolate, this town you've brought me to.
-Everything is closed for the holiday.
-What kind of holiday?
-It's about giving things to other people.
-Shouldn't the stores be open then?
-What do you mean?
-What's the message? "In the spirit of giving, you can't have anything."
-There's more to it than that.
-So, it's not about giving?
-Yes, it is. But not to strangers.
-I would think a gift to a stranger would be better than a gift to a friend.
-It still doesn't work that way.
-I've only got three more days....

12/26 Direct Link
Next day the fairy said, There was something I wanted to talk about yesterday but, for some unknown and mysterious reason, I didn't have time to. Funny, that, isn't it? You'd think a wisp, without form or substance, would be able to speak and speak without limit, since the words don't occupy any space-
-What did you want to ask about?
-Those people we were with, with whom we dined--Who were they?
-They were relatives.
-Relatives, relatives.... You were related to all of them?
-Actually, to none of them. Kind of.
-Kind of?
-We've run out of time again.

12/27 Direct Link
Next day the fairy said, What's with all the darkness?
-We're in a large room to watch a motion picture.
-What? What happened to the relatives?
-On these sorts of occasions, it's often a good idea to make oneself scarce for a period.
-So.... We're going to sit here and look at, what, a slide show?
-No, it's going to be a story.
-A fairy story?
-Not in such a sense. It's about a horse.
-And we're here because you can--what do you call it?--"decompress."
-That seems like a right analysis.
-I am here to serve you, master.

12/28 Direct Link
Next day the fairy said, What's this place? Looks homey.
-It should. It's my home.
-Oh. Does this mean your journey is over?
-That's exactly what it means. The journey is over.
-It was quite an enlightening experience, this trip of yours.
-I'm glad you thought so.
-So much was involved.... Well, I guess you won't need me around any more.
-I wish you'd stay.
-No, no, that won't work.
-Thanks for coming with me.
-Do you mean that?
-I don't think I could have survived without you.
-What a nice thing to say!
-Til next time?
-Til next time.
12/29 Direct Link
"Hendrix, I need you to do something."

"Okey-dokey, boss, what's up, what's on your big big mind?"

"The accounts receivable department has amortized our compounds for the next three fiscal quarters and I need you to run them over to Richard Poundfoot on the ninth floor."

"Waah! You think I look fat!"

"I think nothing of the sort! Can you get this up to Poundfoot."

"Goo-goo, what kind of a tree you want to be?"

"Forget about your trees. Take this to Poundfoot."

"Say please pretty please."

"Hendrix, will you stop acting like a little girl?"

"Waah! He's infantalizing me!"
12/30 Direct Link
We don't need a contracy, my bucko. Your word is good enough for me. This is the situation. There's what I have and what you need and there's what I need and what you have. Simple this-for-that, or, as Cicero liked to say, quid pro quo. And that's why there's no need for a contract. Okay, let me correct that: you have to sign this. It reads that if you break the contract, the verbal contracts, you have to pay. Details, details! Don't you trust me? I'll do everything I can to see that it's never needed. Just sign here.
12/31 Direct Link
TIME

I got onto an elevator today and I heard a cover of Neil Young's song "After the Goldrush," but this version had the line, "look at mother nature on the run in the twentieth century" instead of "look at mother nature on the run in the 1970s." And I thought, What a stupid change to make! Like it isn't going to date anyway!

I thought of better versions:

Look at mother nature on the run in the 1470s....

Look at mother nature on the run in 28 BC....

(Oh my God, Dolly Parton is to blame!)

Happy New Year.