Monday, June 30, 2008

No S---, Sherlock

This bit of today's blog fodder will be placed in a new category which I am appropriately calling "No S---!" It will be obvious which stories will fall into the "No S---" category, as they will be the ones that you read and you automatically think, "No s---!" Uttering a ridiculously sarcastic sounding "Sherlock!" after you incredulously say "No s---!" is purely optional. Use it if you feel like it. It's up to you.

The inaugural subject of "No S---!" or "NO S---, Sherlock!" is Steven Tyler. As you may or may not already know, Steven Tyler, the lead singer for the ridiculously awesome band whose members are surprisingly still alive Aerosmith, had checked into rehab in May. And while the singer of a rock band checking into rehab isn't usually surprising, at the time, it was in Tyler's case. That's because he claimed that he had checked into rehab to recover from a foot surgery.

According to the folks over yonder there at the AP, "Tyler said the procedures were to correct longtime foot injuries resulting from his physical performances as the singer for the blues-rock band." Wait a minute. "Blues-rock band"? Since when? I've listened to Aerosmith for quite some time (Was really wasted in the 8th row at one of their concerts once.) and I don't recall the "blues" part of the "rock band".

Now, seriously folks, did anyone, ANY-ONE, actually buy that he was in "rehab" to recover from "foot surgery"? Sure. Sure they did. If "rehab" means "detox" and if "to recover from foot surgery" means to "overcome some sort of chemical dependence." Sure they did. Un-believable.

I remember hearing about the "foot surgery" and at the time I thought, "Spare me. Can you not come up with anything that is a bit more realistic? Do you think we're all morons?" Apparently the answers to those questions were "No" and "Yes". That's because Tyler now says that he was fighting a dependency on pain and sleep medications. Aaaannddd.....NOW! "No S---!"

On Friday, Tyler told the folks at the AP, "To have your feet done, to have your leg done, you have to be on narcotics. You have to be on sleep aids at night. I don't know about Joe (Perry) but I was off and running and I didn't like the me that was me. This was a month ago, so I just put the brakes on and checked into detox and just pulled the plug on all of it."

So there you have it. He wasn't in rehab for his feet. He was in rehab because he got hooked on the narcotics that usually accompany most types of surgery regardless of which body part has been operated on. So why can he say that now but he couldn't say that then? I have no idea. But it certainly couldn't be that he thought that if the public knew that he had some sort of chemical dependency that it would ruin his image. THAT certainly wasn't it. Folks, THIS is Steven Tyler. It's not about his image:

Well, whatever the reason, all I can say is:

Steven Tyler? Treated for painkiller addiction? No S---!

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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Dear Best Buy,

Dear Best Buy,

I know that we have been seeing a lot of each other lately. And in the beginning, I really enjoyed your company. It was great! (Remember when I was in line for hours just to get a Wii? Ah, good times.) But lately, well, I feel that our relationship has deteriorated. It's as if you just don't care anymore. Oh, you say that you do. You offer me coupons and great deals on computers on occasion. You have that cheery yellow price tag logo, always cocked slightly askew, which used to make me smile whenever I saw it. But it's getting old and now I just cringe when I look in your direction. (Your mother's right you know. You should sit up straight. Why is that so hard for you?)

Look, Best Buy, this is what I'm driving at: We're done. It's over. I'm breaking up with you.

The only reason we ended up together is that I was on the rebound after my breakup with Circuit City. (God, that guy was lazy! And smug! SO smug. For no apparent reason, either.) And I started seeing you on the side while I was trying to break it off with CC. You were open later, you were much, much bigger (size IS important) and you had that whimsical air about you that I never had with CC. But I realize now that my rebounding from that relationship is what drove me to you in the first place. I should have waited before I became involved with you. I shouldn't have let my emotions get the best of me. But I did.

Best Buy, it's as if you don't remember things that we've planned together. I will have been looking forward to a product release for weeks. You HAD to have known about it! Yet when I show up to purchase it, it's no where to be found. Oh, sure, that annoying guy at the door with his suspect glare and yellow highlighter pen is always there, but the new product is not. And no one seems to know what I'm talking about. HOW could you have FORGOTTEN something SO important to ME?! I've been planning this for WEEKS and you FORGOT?! Time and time again that scenario has repeated itself, Best Buy. I'm over it.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to forgetful. While I do appreciate the apparent goodwill gesture in hiring the socially challenged, frankly, it's become tedious to have to deal with those who act as if I am interrupting their day by asking them a question. So much, in fact, that my questions have gone from product inquiries to the location of something in a store. Now I'm down to not much more than "What time is it?"

And I've never understood why you're so secretive, Best Buy. When new products are coming out, all I ever see on your website is "COMING SOON!" "SOON" is never well defined. "SOON" is never defined at all. I am supposed to guess or just find out when "SOON" is. And usually when I do, it turns out that "SOON" is "TOO LATE" by the time I catch on.

Best Buy, I'm tired of being treated like cattle when there's a massive product release, a la Playstation 3. Why, why, WHY do you find it necessary to have us all wait in the parking lot for DAYS ahead of time? See, in order for us to BUY the product from you, we need to have MONEY. The way that we GET the MONEY that we are more than willing to GIVE to you in exchange for the product is we go to WORK. We have found it very difficult to WORK when we are forced to sit in your parking lot for three days to ensure that we will actually get a product. Truth be told, you can only play volleyball with an inflated condom and 6 frat boys for just so long before it starts to get really old.

I'm tired of always looking for your things. You get things and then immediately lose them or forget where you put them. Today, the day I have looked forward to for weeks, is when Guitar Hero, the Aerosmith Edition was released. I did not feel the need to meet up with you at midnight, as you suggested that I could do, to claim my copy. I would prefer to be asleep at midnight. Instead I chose to show up this morning before you opened. Fortunately, the line outside was short. One of your minions who opened the doors announced something unintelligible before allowing us inside. (I would have asked those in front of me if they had heard what it was, but no one spoke English. That's one of the drawback to living in America; finding other English speaking individuals.)

An ambiguous line immediately formed. No one in the line knew what it was for, but it was a line and it was inside, so it must be good. I found one of your blue shirted, looking like they know what they're doing, staff members and inquired as to where the coveted game might be found. I was pointed in the direction of the bundles, even though I had specified JUST the game. (How many Fisher-Price-esque guitar controllers do you people really think I need? I'm already building an addition on my home in order to house all of the drum sets and guitars that come with these things. Compatibility, ACTIVISION, HARMONIX, SONY, RED OCTANE, NINTENDO, MICROSOFT. COMPATIBILITY!! Consumers cannot have a SEPARATE, full size drum set for EVERY game! Though we wouldn't mind some inflatable groupies, thank you very much.)

So I asked about just the GAME again. I feel as if I am ALWAYS repeating myself to you, Best Buy. Why can't you just listen the first time I say something? Your perplexed stares and intermittent blinking as if you were a confused doe are beginning to annoy me. How can you NOT know what I'm talking about? Guitar Hero games are HUGE sellers. Do you remember the Rock Band Bundle fiasco of December 2007? Oh, right! Puh-leeze! How can you NOT! I think you DO! Remember? You had no CLUE as to if your STORES were going to receive ANY at all. When I checked online, I was greeted with your rage-inducing, all too familiar "COMING SOON!" proclamation and I promptly twisted off and yelled at your stupid, stupid screen. (Fortunately, I won that fight. Because you're so inept, you had the shipping for the Rock Band Bundle priced as if it were just the game. I got that baby, 37 pounds worth, overnight for $11. Sucker!) WHY do your blue shirted minions not know where the game that was JUST RELEASED THAT DAY is?

After watching someone (someone deemed by you to be competent enough to perform that job) who was trying (in his own way, I believe) to locate the game on the website to see if it was actually a product that you, yes YOU, Best Buy, would actually carry, I told him that was unnecessary. You HAD to have them stocked. You've been taking pre-orders and pre-payments for MONTHS now. HOW could you not have any? Of course you couldn't NOT have any! So WHY didn't anyone know where in the hell they WERE?!?! It's just one more reason as to why our relationship doesn't work anymore, Best Buy. Your judgement is horrible.

Finally, someone gave a shout out to another blue shirted minion who said that I just need to go to the cashier and tell them I want it and THEY will get it for me. For Christ's sake. THAT was easier said than done. You are always complicating things, Best Buy. Everything is the long way around the block with you. What's with that? When I get to the cashier and explain that's what I need, again I'm greeting with the doe in the headlights look. At this point, I'm really starting to wish it was deer hunting season. He asks three people. Three people look clueless. (Your consistency with hiring the inept is remarkable, by the way. Too bad that consistency couldn't come out in more positive ways. If it could, I highly doubt I'd be breaking up with you.) Three rooms (each of which seemed to require the security of Fort Knox, as they were locked and only one, large, intimidating bald man named "Mac" had the key) were looked in. Just like a game show, it was behind Door Number Three. (Why the other two were locked, I don't know.) Finally. Here's my money. Can I go now? Of course not.

Best Buy, why does cash perplex you so? It's as if you have never seen an actual piece of US currency ever. I'm giving up on trying to throw in correct amounts of change that will alleviate my receiving any pennies in return. Even though there is a cash register RIGHT THERE which WILL DO all of the math FOR YOU, you will STILL always look at me like I am nuts. You furrow your brow and you tilt your head and you squint your eyes a bit and you look at the screen again. Then you look back at the seemingly ridiculous combination of bills and coins that I have given you. Then back to the screen. You repeat this at least three times. By the third time, I can see your anxiety level rising, as if you're not sure how to break it to ME that I'M a moron. But that look disappears and a wave of relief washes over your face when the amount of change you are to give me pops up on the monitor as a whole and rational number. Meanwhile, I've just been smiling stupidly at you for the last thirty seconds as you work your way through this live version of the math section on the SAT. You hand me my change and a receipt that is longer than my arm even though I only bought ONE video game. That's another reason we're through. You're wasteful and inane. Why do I need a receipt that is two feet long?

So we're done. Over. Through. Kaput. Finito. I don't care about your cheery yellow tag logo. (It's starting to seem kinda gay, anyway.) You don't learn from your mistakes. You repeat the same disasterous fiasco over and over and over again. I can practically guarantee that a new release of anything will be handled poorly by you. I have told you this time and time again. And every time I have told you, you always respond with the same automatically generated response expressing fake concern to try and appease me in the hope that I'll pipe down. Eventually. But even though you say I'm important to you, you don't change. I can no longer have any hope that you will ever change. Also, despite what your name says, you really aren't the "BEST BUY" out there. Oh, you're better than that smug loser CC, I'll give you that. But you're still way too full of yourself. You're not the BEST and you're certainly not the best for me. And don't call me or send me your cute little coupons. I have resigned myself to the fact I'll likely bump into you every Sunday as I go through the newspaper. And I'm sure that your shining mug will be all I see during the holiday season. That will be tough. Some of our best (and most expensive) times have been over Christmas. But it's just not worth it. You're incompetent, ungrateful and refuse to learn from past mistakes. You're on your own, BB.

PS Just so you know, I've decided that I'm not going to see anyone for a while. I'm going to take my time before settling down again. I might even see a few different places at the same time. I don't need to commit myself to just one right away. Especially since this break up with you has dragged on for way too long and has actually been a little painful. A LITTLE. Not a LOT. A LITTLE! (God, you're such an ass! Always reading more into it than there is.) But I'm sure I'll find someone someday. And if I take my time, I'm more likely to find the one that's right for me. Maybe you and CC can go shed a tear in your beer up there on barstool mountain together. But don't bother looking around for me when you come down. I'll have already moved on. FINALLY.

Kiss my ass, Best Buy.

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Speaking of Walrus

So, for some reason, there are a whole lot of bodies/skeletons buried all throughout London. They're everywhere. Under the streets, under the roads, under buildings, everywhere. You can't swing a dead person without hitting another dead person, from what I can tell. So when you have a city full of skeletons, if you're the Museum of London and The Times Online, you team up and you make an electronic map that allows users to zoom in and see how many bodies they walk over on the way to work every day. Spiffy.

The skeleton map project will pinpoint the location of over 37,000 bodies that the museum has found in London. And when I say "in London" I mean just that. Buried right there IN London, right beneath the very two feet you're standing on (if you're standing on them in London). The curators at the museum have kept 17,000 of the ol' bones for themselves in storage, but have re-interred the rest. ("Re-interred" meaning, "back in the ground, wherever we feel like putting them", apparently.)

They went and got all cutsie with the map and put little skull logos to locate where, you guessed it, each skeleton/dead body is. AND, if 37,000 skeletons seems like quite a lot to wade through on your own (and it is), you're in luck because the 26 skeletons with the most fascinating stories will be put on display at the Wellcome Collection in London. That according to our good friends over there at the Times Online - UK.

But if you still can't wait to learn more about the best ones, here's a teaser. According to The Times, The most gruesome example is the skeleton of a young woman who died around the beginning of the 19th century. She had such severe syphilis that her skull still bears the scars of where the disease entered her bones." (Note to self: Do not get syphilis.) Ooh, but it gets better according to Bill White, who is the senior curator of the museum's bio-archaeology department. Bill said that "The woman would have had open sores on her forehead. By that time she would have been out of her mind, so she wouldn't have known much about it. She was in her twenties when she died. We think she may have been a prostitute, because Southwark, where she was found, was well known for prostitution at the time. She also suffered from rickets, probably from being kept indoors away from sunlight as a child, and had chronic tooth decay. " (Note to self - Part Deux: Your life is pretty darned good.)

Um, "probably from being kept indoors away from sunlight as a child"? What the hell does that mean? The most disturbing part of that (aside from all of it) is the word "probably". "Probably" as in "most likely". WAS it "most likely" that the individual was "kept indoors away from sunlight as a CHILD?" I would hope something like that would fall more in the "least likely" category, but apparently it does not. Of course, no word on WHY she was "probably kept indoors". Important information to the reader, one would think! But it's no where to be found.

Here's some more skeleton-y goodness to tide you over until October. Well, when the Chelsea graveyard (that's in Chelsea) was being explored, the archaeologists there discovered the Hand brothers, who, according to our friends at The Times Online again, were "imaginatively named Richard Gideon and Gideon Richard, and whose family invented the Chelsea Bun." (The Chelsea Bun is the distant cousin of America's beloved bun, the Cinnamon.) Richard Gideon was an odd duck. (NO. Not a platypus.) He was an officer in the Staffordshire militia who was known to his men as “Captain Bun”. (A title which I'm sure commanded loads of respect.) The Captain also enjoyed walking about his neighborhood in a fez and a long gown. (Clearly, this was long before "Don't Ask, Don't Tell".) Jelena Bekvalac, an osteologist at the museum said that his neighbors saw him as "a bit of an eccentric." Oh, do you THINK? The 1850s, in or around the London area and some guy is walking around with a fez and a gown and calling himself "Captain Bun". That's almost the very definition of "eccentric." Sadly, for reasons unknown, his skeleton will not be part of the 26 on display. (Though, could you imagine if it was? They could dress his ol' bones up with the fez and gown and give him a tray of Chelsea buns. It'd be quite a hook for tourists, you have to admit.)

There's another set of skeletal remains that will also NOT be on display with the 26 that are. These would be the remains that were found in a coffin in a graveyard at St. Pancras. And while it's not overly surprising to find remains in a coffin in a graveyard, it is a little surprising when you learn that the remains that were found were that of a walrus. Wait. What?

Correct. For some reason, a walrus, yes, a walrus was given a rather dignified burial, complete with coffin, in a cemetery where you almost never find ANY walruses. (Walruses? Walrusi? Walri? I swear, trying to figure out the plural of things like 'walrus' or 'octopus' is just a pain in the ass. All of your choices sound good! There's no way to tell!) And here's where it starts to get weird. The archaeologists don't have any clue as to why the walrus is there, who put it there, none of it. They just don't know.

Oh, but they DO know about a woman who "probably" was locked in a closet as a child and they DO know about the gowned Captain Fun Bun and his traipsing about town in his fez. THAT they know. But the walrus has them stumped? HOW is it possible to know EVERYTHING about the skeletal people and NOTHING about the walrus?! (Kind of makes me wonder if they were just making all of that other stuff up.)

Yep. It's a head scratcher alright, Chumley. It's a head scratcher.

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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Avyeq, The Masturbating Walrus

A moment of silence please. There's been a death. The death of a legend. Let's all just pause a moment to remember, Ayveq. Um, who? Ayveq. Ayveq the walrus?! The one at the New York Aquarium?! Any of this ringing a bell for you? Come on! Ayveq, the walrus whose strange and compelling masturbatory ways turned him into an international sensation. Wait. His what?

Correct. Ayveq, the 14-year old masturbating walrus at the New York Aquarium has died, most likely of a "massive bacterial infection", according to someone who knows a thing or two about walruses (and probably a little more about bacterial infections), I would guess. According to The Brooklyn Paper, Ayveq was well-liked (mostly by himself, apparently) even before he began demonstrating the "habit that would make him a star." Yep. Walrus porn. A diddlin' walrus. Hot stuff over there in Brooklyn. The Paper also said that his "frequent pubic public self-gratification made him the Coney Island institution's singular attraction." Well, I am glad it was just a "singular" attraction. At least THAT seems normal. (But really? A masturbating walrus was more of a draw than that Nathan's hot dog eating contest at Coney Island every 4th of July? Really?)

(By the way, The Brooklyn Paper is one of only a couple of news outlets that reported on this story that told it like it was. There were some instances of this story without a single mention of masturbation, self gratification or even walrus wanker. So thanks a lot, Brooklyn Paper guys, for giving all of us the truth about large aquatic mammals that frequently pleasure themselves in front of onlookers. If it weren't for you guys, I may have completely overlooked this story that just tugs at heartstrings. And tugs at a few other things as well).

According to the director of the Aquarium, a one Jon Forrest Dohlin, "He was an absolute delight. (Again, mostly to himself.) He had a magnetism and a charm that was totally his own. He loved people and he knew how to work a crowd and entertain guests. He did have a raffish charm, no doubt about that." Oh, there seemed to be a "magnetism" all right. Just like a magnet, his flipper was pulled into, well, that region more often than most would care to think about. And as far as his knowing how to "work a crowd", I don't know about that one. He knew how to work something, that's quite clear. He was workin' it! But the crowd? I don't think he was doing it so much for their enjoyment, hence the term "self gratification". (Oh, and the term "raffish" that was used by the guy in charge of the Aquarium? Yeah, who knew? Anyway, the word "raffish" means "to be suggestive of flashy vulgarity or crudeness." Thus it would appear that a "masturbating walrus" is actually THE VERY definition of "raffish" in it's whole and unadulterated form. From now on, when you hear "raffish" you'll think "walrus wanker whacking". I'm sure of it.)

The folks at the Aquarium said that they knew something was wrong on Sunday. "...we could see that he was not right," said Jon. Not right? What? His flipper wasn't Freeing his Willy that day? I find it amusing that when the walrus was NOT masturbating, something was wrong, but if he WAS masturbating, it was like, "Oh, thank God! He's touching it! He's fine. He's fine." Well, whatever it was that was "not right", it never did "right" itself, and ol' Ayveq was dead within a week. ::sniff::

The name "Ayveq" means, unoriginally enough, "walrus" in Siberian Yupik. "Siberian Yupik" is the language of the equally unoriginal Siberian Yupik tribe of Eskimos. A fascinating culture I'm sure, but without a lick of imagination from what I can tell right there.

Now, I realize that at least 3 of the 6 of you that read this blog might be somewhat interested in what, exactly, walrus masturbation consists of (other than at least one flipper and, well....that). And the other 3 of the 6 of your ARE interested, but would never say that you're interested. (Cowards.) So, I'm going to pretend as if I actually have some better judgement and that way I can say that this probably goes against it. Behold! Avyeq, the masturbatory walrus. We shall miss ye, oh, touchy feely one. We shall miss ye. (Warning: It's not what you might think of as a "typical" walrus masturbatory practice. It MAY shock you. It shocked the hell out of me. And I don't even have one of those.)

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I Said Get In The Manger!

(The flamingo picture on the left came from the fine folks over at Big Head Studio.  I appreciate them letting me use their photo.) I'm not one who's into yard decorations. Pink flamingos, the garden gnome (little bastard is constantly hawking that Travelocity crap. He never shuts up!), etc. But some people are and that's fine. What's not fine is when you have, say, a nativity scene (for those of you having lunch with Satan right now, that would involve a Joseph, a Mary, no more than three men (must be wise) and a baby named Jesus. It must be a "baby Jesus". It can't just be A Jesus. It's can't be just "Jesus". It must be "baby Jesus". Oh, and that must be said as if it is one word. BabyJesus. American folklore at it's finest right here.) and part of that nativity scene is stolen. (Do I have to tell you it was the BabyJesus that was ripped off? I didn't think so.) Then you have quite a dilemma on your hands. Do you:
  • a) Give up on the whole nativity scene idea altogether, pack it up and store it in the shed,

  • b) Have the garden gnome be BabyJesus
  • c) Have your son be BabyJesus
If you answered "c, have your son be BabyJesus", not only are you a moron, you're correct!
Let's go back. Back to a time when the nativity scene of Tricia Hoffman over yonder in West Des Moines, Iowa, was complete. A time which is sometimes known as January, 2002. It was then that Tricia last saw her BabyJesus. Abducted by Satan, some would say. Abducted by the Nazis, others would say (but that was only after a BabyJesus with a swastika painted on it's belly turned up in a different yard a little while later. But the "two" Jesuses (Jesi?) were never thought of being related in some way and the Nazis were off the hook yet again!).
After seven months, the trail of BabyJesus had grown cold. Not as cold as January, where the temperature in Iowa constantly hovers around 20 degrees, but still cold. Tricia was faced with a dilemma "We were going to buy a whole other manger scene because you can't just buy the baby Jesus. But who needs six kings, two Josephs and two Marys?" (Note to self: Get busy on that "individual nativity scene members" idea. Call Wal-Mart before noon.) Perhaps the FLDS folks might be interested in the twoMarys and a Joseph idea?
Well, apparently, Jesus & Co. are quite pricey in Iowa. It would have cost Tricia over a thousand bucks to buy another set. (That's like $160 per replicated religious icon. Huh. Who knew?) According to the fine folks over there at the Des Moines Register, being the innovative Iowan, Tricia, instead "used dolls or her son, Jack, now 10, as stand-ins for the last six years while Jesus was away from his manger." Wait. What?

According to Tricia, "Jack usually didn't last too long. It was hard to convince him to lie out there in the freezing cold." Ten year old Jack seems to be the brains behind this operation. Good for you, Jack! Way to stand your ground, buddy! Are you kidding me?

So the BabyJesus goes AWOL and this woman decides, "I know! I'll have my son stand in for Jesus! Oh, yes, the temperatures do get quite low, but I'll just remind him that he's doing it for Jesus and if he doesn't, he'll go straight to hell, no questions asked." Is that how it went? (Of course she didn't say that. At least, it's not reported anywhere. Purely speculation on my part. Jack's probably not going to hell. For that.)

Fortunately, Jack's intermittent stint as Jesus came to a screeching halt when the Police Department had an auction to clear out accumulated stuff that had been confiscated or turned in. (I'm not quite sure what good "confiscating" something does if you are then going to return it into public circulation via an auction, but that's just me.) When Tricia returned home from an overnight shift at the hospital where she works, her mother said to her, " I think your baby Jesus is on the front page of The Des Moines Register." And really, that's something you almost never hear.

So she went to the auction and there he was. BabyJesus! The cops retrieved BabyJesus, checked some old police reports, figured out it was the one and the same that had been pilfered from the front yard manger six years ago AND the same one that had the swastika painted on his belly in the other yard (so the Nazis WERE responsible in some way! I knew it!). They then returned BabyJesus to Tricia, the rightful owner and overseer of the statuesque icon representing the son of God.

I still can't get the image of poor Jack, BabyJesus's understudy, out there in the nativity scene in his front yard in the middle of December in Iowa. I can only imagine the comments from the passer bys. "Mommy, why is BabyJesus shivering?" "Mommy, why is BabyJesus wearing that parka?" "I don't remember the Bible saying anything about BabyJesus having a Nintendo DS."

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Friday, June 27, 2008

A Fork and A Chicken - Together At Last

This headline from the folks over yonder at the Associated Press: "Man accused of fork, chicken attacks." Oh, dear God. What the hell?

In the fine state of Michigan (Jackson, to be exact), a man allegedly stabbed his mother with a fork. he then assaulted another woman with 10 pounds of frozen chicken. Then things start to get weird.

Let's back up here. OK, Einstein, otherwise known as Frederick Duane McKaney, a 40-year old moron from Ypsilanti, stabbed the first woman, otherwise known to Fred as 'Mom', in the neck with a fork on Monday night. This action apparently seemed to be the correct course of action for the man to take when the woman, 'Mom', refused to give him some money. (Well, if she wouldn't give him any money before all of the fork stabbing, I highly doubt she's going to be wanting to hand over any cash after all of the fork stabbing. But that's just me.)

While I suppose I could understand being upset that someone wouldn't give you money that you so clearly demanded from them, I'm a bit confused as to why the fork was the weapon of choice. I'd also like to know where this fork was before the guy used it to poke his mother in the back of the neck. I mean, was it her fork? Was it his fork? Does he always carry a fork around? And if so, why? Does he always think of the fork as more of a weapon and less as a utensil? So many questions. So many morons. Continuing...

(By the way, I'm sure that you won't be all that surprised to learn that Stabby Fred there has spent a bit of time in prison during his life. Yes, shocking, I know.) After stabbing 'Mom', Stabby Fred took off. About an hour after his pronged assault, he was riding a bicycle and encountered two women who were standing on the sidewalk talking. According to the AP, "He said something nasty to them and they responded in kind. He jumped off his bike and hit one woman over the head with 10 pounds of chicken." OK, wait. What?

He hit one of the women over the head with ten pounds of chicken? Chicken as in poultry? Where did this ten pounds of chicken come from? Who in the hell has ten pounds of chicken at one given time, let alone ten pounds of chicken when you're either talking to your neighbor on the sidewalk or riding your bicycle after stabbing your mother with a fork?! Ten pounds is a lot of chicken! I have just perused probably 15 different accounts of this story from 15 different "news" sources online and not one of them, not ONE said anything about where in the hell the 10 pounds of chicken came from! What is wrong with the media?! The chicken is a vital component to this saga and we have no idea where it came from! Grand.

The assault with the mysterious 10 pound poultry weapon caused the woman to need five staples to close the gash in her head. Her husband, rather than tend to his bleeding wife at the moment, got in his truck and followed Stabby Fred as he pedaled off from the scene of the crime. When he saw a police officer, he flagged him down, assumedly explained, "That man on the bike hit my wife over the head with 10 pounds of chicken! What? NO, I'm not telling you where the chicken came from! Arrest him!"

Almost forgot. Behold! Mugshot goodness of Stabby Fred:

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Your Search For Cigarette World Records Is Over

You know, people find this blog a variety of ways. Not the least of which is my shameless self promotion. But there are other ways that I have nothing to do with. And it would seem that a lot of people are extremely curious as to the world record of who has either smoked the most cigarettes at one time or had the most cigarettes in their mouth at one time and smoked those. (They sound like the same thing, but they're different.) And in another post I did months and months ago, I casually mentioned that there was a world record for smoking the most cigarettes. And when people search for this topic, they stumble across this blog. And that's great. But I feel a little guilty that there isn't anything here for them to find. It really was given just as brief a mention as I gave it just now. But no more.

No, from now on, those searching for this topic (even though I have no idea as to why) will no longer be disappointed. Now they will have facts and dates and photos and commentary to ooh and aah over. And I'm hoping that if you found this blog because you were searching for info on the cigarette smoking world record(s), that you will tell me why you need to know this. And it's not just you, it's a fair amount of folks that have a craving for this subject. I just want to know why that is. Help me out here. It's the least you can do. (Well, that and link something to this blog. And tell everyone you know. And come back and read it once in a while yourself. It's the least you can do.)

OK, most cigarettes in the mouth at one time. That record seems to be held by a one Jim Mouth. Yes, Mouth. Jim Mouth is a comedian and he is also the holder of 22, yes, 22 world records. That also makes him the self proclaimed world record holder of holding the most world records. Interesting distinction. But he's not hoarding the world records for his own personal use. He turns the whole ordeal into a performance of sorts and usually does this on behalf of different charities as a way of raising thousands of dollars for the charities. What a guy. That's nice.

Jim, as his name seems to imply, has a big mouth. It is in that mouth that he has managed to shove 159 cigarettes, light them and smoke them. (By "smoke them" I mean "take a puff until you feel like you're going to puke and then spit them out"). He has also managed to cram in that same mouth 41 cigars, 40 pipes, 18 hot dogs, 280 straws, 80 cigarettes + 12 cigars + 3 pipes, 60 smokeless cigarettes,180 French fries and one large Chicago pizza. (All at separate times, by the way.) I'm not quite sure why he can only fit in 60 smokeless cigarettes when he can shove 159 regular cigarettes in there, but that's what it says on his web site.

Now, if we're talking about the world record for the most cigarettes smoked at one time but that are not necessarily all in the mouth at the same time, then we would be referencing a one Stefan Sigmond. Stefan is from Cluj in Translyvania and he was 29 on January 31, 1996 when he set the world record for smoking the most cigarettes at once in Bucharest. He smoked 800 cigarettes. (Filter-tipped and "western" cigarettes, according to the AP article. No word on what "western" means, but I'm guessing the AP didn't want to pimp Marlboro so they went with "western" instead.) They were placed in this round, kind of wheel-like looking contraption and then lit. For just under six minutes, Stefan puffed and he puffed and then he had a world record. (Did you think I was going to finish of with "blew the house down"? That'd be silly.)

Stefan also holds other world records. In 1995, he ate 29 hard boiled eggs in just 4 minutes (and he and everyone around him was probably reminded of this feat for LONG after the 4 minutes had passed, but long BEFORE the 29 eggs had. Passed, that is.). He also jumped into a lake from a platform that was 135 feet tall. I don't know exactly why that is a world record, but I guess it is. Well, it was a world record. See, at some point, Guinness decided that it wasn't exactly, what's the word, classy? Maybe? Couth? Nah, but I'm getting closer. Non-litigious? THERE we go! I think that they may have been worried about being sued at some point if they condoned activities that, as they put it, encouraged "gluttony and foolhardiness." So these things are no longer in the Guinness Book of World Records (now known, affectionately and abbreviatedly by me as the GBWR).

Now, just because these feats of foolhardiness are not in the GBWR, does that mean that they're not World Records? That's up to you. If you think that Guinness is the utmost authority on world records and it's only a world record if they say it is, then I guess not. But if you think "Screw Guinness! The guy smoked 800 cigarettes at once!", then perhaps they ARE world records. Perhaps only to you. But if you just start designating various gluttonous and foolhardy feats as being "world records" without the Guinness seal (stamp?) of approval, then technically you're just making stuff up. What you're going to need to do is get your own stamp of approval and start the "Gluttonous and Foolhardy Records of the Universe" or something so that you will at least appear as if you have some validity (even though we both know the truth).

So there you go, all of you looking-for-information-about-cigarette-smoking-world-records guys. There's what you sought and found. Oh, you're welcome. Now tell me why you need to know this crap.

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Thursday, June 26, 2008

Spray-On Kondom or Achtung?

I've learned many a things since I've started using this blog as a way to spare my friends from having to listen to my rantings. The main one was that my friends needed to be spared from having to listen to my rantings. But sometimes I'll run across a topic and I'll be looking into just how ridiculous it can get and I learn of a whole new avenue that serves the purpose of amusing me a great deal. Today, condoms are that avenue.

In the post about the microchip shoved (ow, ow, ow!), there was mention of latex condoms being disposed of into the environment. Well I needed to know if that was really all that big of an issue, so I started looking stuff up. That is when I found out about the spray on condom. Wait. What?

I ran across an article from 2006 that ran over there at . It talked about how the researchers at the German Institute for Condom Consultancy (I swear that's what it's called) planned to launch a spray on condom. The process/device/invention required that the man insert his unit into a spray can like device that would then coat said unit with latex that was sprayed from nozzles on all sides. (Sort of like one of those spray-on tanning booths. Only it's with your penis in a tube and it's latex.) It's supposed to be ready to use in about 5 seconds. (I'm assuming that is after setting up the equipment that you would have to carry around with you and presumably, not in your wallet. I see problems already.).

The point was not to scare off women so that no one has sex anymore. The point was to make a contraceptive that fit better and wouldn't slip. The goal was to be able to have a perfect fitting condom no matter what size your penis was. At the time, they were looking for spray on condom testers who sported a penis length of between 9 to 12 cm ( 3.5 to 4.7 inches) and those who sported a penis length of between 15 and 20 cm ( 5.9 to 7.9 inches). I don't know if the 13 and 14 cm (5.1 and 5.5 inches) chaps were invited as well, but it is nice to see that they weren't being overly ambitious with their size requirements. (Even though it does make you wonder just a bit.)

But the best part was that these spray-on condoms were expected to be ready to market by 2008! Well, hey! It's 2008 right NOW! I don't recall hearing about how the spray-on condom is the latest contraceptive craze sweeping the globe. I don't recall hearing different guys saying, "I am not putting it in THERE." (NO! Regular guys! Guys who like girls! Not Clay Aiken! He always says that!) So what happened? Is the schlong spray ready or not?

That would be not. I checked out the website and it basically said that, due to problems that were too hard to overcome (double pun TOTALLY intended!), the guy was giving up on the spray-on condom idea. (Awww....) However (Yay! We love "however" because in this case it likely means "something else about condoms!" Hopefully from a foreign land!), on the website were advertisements for all sorts of "traditional" condoms (and by "traditional" I mean the ones that you don't spray directly onto your penis). And while I don't usually have any reason to be looking at condoms, I was intrigued. Perhaps that's why I was looking. All I know is that I'm glad I did.

Welcome to the Vinico, World of Condoms! Man, there are all sorts of condoms! Tons! You guys have quite the plethora of choices to wade through. It's like there's everything except for a fur covered one for y'all to wrap that rascal in. (Oh, wait. Never mind. There it is. Huh. Who'd a-thunk it? Fur. Go figure.) Aaaaaany way, it's a bit more amusing that the web page is in German and translated (with the help of the God-like Google application so aptly named Google Translator. Again, go figure.) into English, because you'll be reading along and then a German word or wording pops in and it doesn't really fit. It's like, "The spray-on condom's degree of comfortableness will vary depending upon the length of your Fahrvergnügen." Or something like that. (I'm a little more into the "achtung" than I am the "Fahrvergnugen", but it's not about me.)

There are different categories from which to sell condoms (I guess) based upon the headers at the top of the page. Those didn't translate so well at all, so I had to try and figure out what they meant from the contents. That didn't go so well either. I had to wing it. (Needless to say, hilarity ensued.) So, in my very best Alec Trebek-like voice with a German accent, "And the categories are...."
  • Startseite (OK, if it were in Spanish, this would be the Start Seven. Since it's in German, it's the Start Something.)
  • Shop (Loosely translated, this means "shop".)
  • Kondom-Beratung (Again, loosely translated, I think it's something like "Condom Beating".)
  • Preishits (No comment. Don't want to know.)
  • Hilfe (This looks like it could be the name of a large woman from the East German Army who tests out the condoms in some back room where no one else ventures.)
  • Kontakt (I'm going with "contact" on this one. I don't' know if that means "Contact/Email us" or "In order to use a condom, I am going to need someone for which my penis will be allowed to contact. Please help me." It's probably either one.

In the Condom Beating category, I find a wide variety of goods and services for the penis and those who own the penis. We find:

  • Risk: Wrong Size Condom

  • Penis Sizes: This is Normal (yeah, um, nice try, but they're not ALL normal!)

  • Testimonial: We report your positive experiences. (Come on! How many tools out there are writing these guys an email that says, "Yahoo! (Or Google! Or Ask!) I had sex! And all because of your Kondom-Gluben!")

  • Condom Diversity (Billed as "an overview of the colorful world of condoms". Yes, that is the picture that accompanied it. No, I can't go there right now.)

  • About Dr. Vinico
The "About Dr. Vinico" section starts off just fine with, " Dr. Vinico is the first and only condom consultant on the Internet in Germany since August 2001. It all began with the virtual consultant Dr. Vinico condom. . Based on seven questions Dr. Vinico found the three best condoms from over 100 condoms for you. Who the virtual condom consultants like once again wishes, it may do so." OK, I have NO idea what that last sentence means. None. But I got the rest. Or I THOUGHT I did. Until I saw the picture of Dr. Vinico here:

WTF? Um, that's a cartoon. Cartoons, to my knowledge, don't HAVE a penis. They don't NEED a penis, they're a cartoon. (OK, Fred might need a penis when he's doing Daphne in the back of the Mystery Machine while Shaggy gets stoned somewhere and Velma whines to Scooby that she can't find her glasses. But other than that, I don't think that's there's much need for the animated penis genre of cartoon character out there.) I don't know that even if I had a penis that I would be trusting a cartoon to direct me to the specific kind of latex goodness from which to wrap it in so that I may make sweet, sweet love to the hot chick that I just picked up in the bar. (OK, fine! I admit it! It WAS Velma! It's just that she just looked so vulnerable without those glasses. And that wide, thick, turtleneck sweater that she always wears, even in the summer! Come on! How can one resist that, especially when coupled with that skirt and those knee high socks?! What? Oh, right. I don't even have a penis. Never mind.) But I digress.

It continues with: "The core of the new advisory approach is the Dr. Vinico Condom Guide, with the penis size as the central decision-making criteria in the selection looks condom. With the Condom Guide, a measure to strip the provision includes penis size, every man and every woman a favorite condom in six steps.They play alongside the size, shape, thickness, surface and the aroma & Color plays an important role. " Well, they certainly seem to have thought of everything there. Size, shape, thickness, surface, aroma and color. They would seem to be in descending order of greatest importance to "Who cares?! I want to have sex!"

So all of the measuring, all of the studies, all of the products, they're all the result of the brainstorming of a cartoon doc? Who may or may not be German?! Are you kidding me? This topic will clearly need to be delved into further.

When checking out the Condom Guide, I was taken to a page with this header:

The Condom Berater. That is apparently a Flash player interactive tool that asked me questions in German about my penis and then berated my choice of condom after I had answered them all. It didn't feel helpful to me, but I think that's only because a) I don't have a firm grasp on the German language and b) I don't actually have a penis to answer questions about (in any language, really). It probably is very useful if you're the opposite of me (ie, male).

Then the fine cartoon doctor concludes his section with a garbled German to English translation that seems to mean well and convey good wishes when it says: "Dr. Vinico has set itself the task of the right for each condom. With the advisory approach would like Dr. Vinico show that sex with the right condom much fun and the prevention with rubber and liebestötend not uncool to be the case. "

Ah, yes. So, remember, with the right condom, you too, can have much fun while at the same time having prevention with rubber! And as always, there will be no need to think about your liebestötend not being cool, if that's the case! Enjoy your sex! Oh, and Fahrvergnügen to you too!

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