Stare.
 
2006 Notebook: Weak V
 
   
gratuitous image
30 January 2006
No. 3,137 (cartoon)
Why are you digging a heart-shaped hole?

It’s not for me.

That’s what I thought.

31 January 2006
STOPPED
I’ve never received a telegram STOP And, as it happens, I never will STOP

After a century and a half of delivering the succinctly-worded missives in yellow envelopes, Western Union stopped sending telegraphs last Friday STOP

Oh well, at least there’s one bright side to the story STOP I learned that the reason telegrams used the word “stop” instead of a period for punctuation STOP It turns out there was a fee for using punctuation, but the four-character word “stop” was free STOP

And, so, that’s the way things are in 2006, so there STOP

1 February 2006
Postal Protocol
Oh dear, there’s another news story about an American postal worker killing lots of people at her workplace. After hearing the news, I called my mother—who’s retired after decades of working at the post office—to ask her if she ever got a government medal for not killing anyone.

“I don’t think they have such an award,” my mother explained.

“That’s too bad,” I replied, “it looks like you earned one.”

“I’m more pragmatic,” my mother continued. “Not being murdered by a coworker is its own reward.”

I had to agree with her. Since there was no point in worrying her, I didn’t mention that I’ve never gone to the post office without my Glock and at least a couple of extra clips. It’s like the ancient Romans said: “When in postal land, do as the postal workers do.”

2 February 2006
My Disingenuousness is Genuine
This afternoon, I became entrapped in a hopeless debate with Juanita. She bullied, strong-armed, browbeat, and tried to intimidate me into accepting her facetious argument.

Given the ferocity of her verbal assault, I responded by dodging and evading her specious propositions.

“You’re being disingenuous!” Juanita accused.

“To the contrary!” I protested contrarily. “My disingenuousness is genuine!”

“Really?” Juanita asked.

“That’s honestly true,” I lied.

3 February 2006
Be Gone Now
“Ladies, gentlemen, and those of you who don’t subscribe to the gender binary, welcome to tonight’s program.”

That’s how Carol Queen greeted the audience at her gallery tonight, which I thought was appropriate given the unusually large number of sexual definitions commonly found in San Francisco. Carol and three other writers proceeded to read their work; all of it was surprisingly good. (Or, perhaps the corollary: none of it was bad.)

The evening ended sadly, though, when a dominatrix gave a disgusting performance. She dragged a nude man by a leash onto the stage, then proceeded to go into her predictable shtick. Her formulaic show wasn’t at all shocking, of course. What I found repulsive in the extreme was the inclusion of a new age diatribe, something about a equating the return of the goddess with the smelly, improbably large plastic cylinder she was wielding with vigor. Finally, when she kept intoning, “Be here now,” I decided here now—or, more accurately, there then—was exactly where I didn’t want to be.

All the wine was gone, so I left. Still, I thought it was a great evening; I wish I went to more openings and shows where only twenty-percent of the offerings were of no interest.

4 February 2006
The New South Isn’t
I’ve heard a lot of talk about “the new (improved) south,” but I don’t believe it. From what I’ve heard, overt racism is prevalent as it ever was. For example, I was appalled by news reports from the funeral of Coretta Scott King.

A lone bagpiper played “Amazing Grace” as [Georgia] Governor Sonny Perdue and his wife Mary escorted the casket into the statehouse ...

Yes, it’s true that civil rights activist was the first black person to lie in honor in what once was once a bastion of segregation. And, yes, the authorities didn’t subject the predominantly black crowd to attack dogs and fire hoses. Even so, I know of no civilized country in which a crowd of peaceful, unarmed civilians would be subjected to a gratuitous bagpipe assault.

Shame, shame. It’s a shame about Georgia, anyway one looks at it.

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©2006 David Glenn Rinehart