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An Artist’s Notebook of Sorts

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20 February 2015

gratuitous image

No. 2,162 (cartoon)

How can you be so sick?

You taught me everything I know.

My first minion!

21 February 2015

Rorschach’s Erotic Drawings

Alphonse asked me if I knew much about art. I told him that I really didn’t; I still don’t know whether I was lying or telling the truth.

Alphonse told me he sort of liked “that Rorschach guy,” then went on to elaborate.

“Normally I’d be disgusted by bestiality,” he explained, “but there’s something about those Rorschach drawings of young women having sex with goats and sheep that I find disturbingly erotic.”

I was uncomfortably intrigued; I had no idea anyone still looked at Rorschach inkblots these days.

22 February 2015

George Washington, Slaver

I don’t remember many specifics from my formal education, but I’m fairly certain that George Washington’s ownership of hundreds of slaves was never mentioned. He inherited ten slaves when he was twelve, and had over three hundred toiling on his Mount Vernon plantation when he died. Washington had his slaves punished savagely. Some were whipped, others beaten, and the worst offenders were sold to buyers in the West Indies, never to see their friends or loved ones again.

I suppose it wasn’t unusual in those days for ambitious men to enslave and torture those they believed to be racially inferior. I wonder if any of the Nazis used the George Washington defense at the Nuremberg trials?

Today is George Washington’s two hundred and eighty-third birthday. It’s a national holiday in the United States, a day to remember America’s most famous slave owner. I suppose the reason Americans celebrate Washington’s birthday and not Abraham Lincoln’s is that Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation; a lot of people are still unhappy about that.

23 February 2015

What Doesn’t Come Out of the Vagina

The new barbarians are almost as hilarious as they are horrifying. The most recent example comes from the not-so-great state of Idaho. Vito Barbieri is one of the patriarchal troglodytes who are trying to force women to obey their primitive strictures. He thought remote surveillance of women’s reproductive system would be a great approach to draconian repression when he questioned physician Julie Madsen during a House State Affairs Committee hearing.

Referring to the tiny cameras ingested to detect colon cancer, Barbieri asked, “Can this same procedure be done in a pregnancy—swallowing a camera and helping the doctor determine what the situation is with the child?”

Madsen tactfully explained to the moron that nothing a woman swallows would ever emerge from her vagina.

“Fascinating,” Barbieri replied to contemptuous guffawing, “That makes sense.”

Barbieri had the last laugh, though; he and his fellow cretins on the committee approved yet another bill that places even more restrictions of the medical options available to pregnant women. And so, another victory for the imbeciles who are too stupid to have any idea how idiotic they are. The ignoramuses are much more horrifying than hilarious, and I didn’t laugh long at Barbieri’s pathetic ignorance of female anatomy.

24 February 2015

Not Steve Jobs’ Sixtieth Birthday

Today would have been Steve Jobs’ sixtieth birthday except for one thing: he died on 5 October, 2011. Jobs may or may not have been a visionary, but he did see his inevitable demise coming, with or without the cancer that killed him. Here are a few ways he thought about his quietus.

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.”

“Almost everything—all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure—these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.”

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”

“Life is short, and we’re all going to die really soon. It’s true, you know.”

Jobs did die really soon, so you know it’s true.

25 February 2015

Maraschino Cherries in the News

I can’t recall with any certainty, but I’m fairly certain that I was even more stupid in the seventies than I am now. I do know that I got my news from television broadcasts, something I never did after that period.

I mention the timeframe to date when I heard a remarkable story on the “news.” It was noteworthy not because of its content, but because of the way Walter Cronkite, the revered newsreader, presented the piece.

Cronkite reported that a government agency had banned the use of red dye number something-or-another. That resulted in the predictable protest by the companies peddling carcinogens, and Cronkite lost his composure and giggled when he read that the move, “could destroy the maraschino cherry industry.”

That was the last I heard about maraschino cherries until today, when I read about Arthur Mondella, the owner of Dell’s Maraschino Cherries. He apparently grew a lot of marijuana in his Red Hook, New York, plant. When investigators told them they’d be visiting him in a few hours with a search warrant, Mondella shouted “Take care of my kids!” then put a bullet through his head. Yet another specious example that marijuana kills.

The news didn’t surprise me; I’ve known about the link between cherries and marijuana for over forty years. In fact, I may have created it when I founded Cherryland, the little dope den I had in my dormitory room at the Interlochen Arts Academy. I’m nevertheless surprised at Mondella’s sideline; I thought maraschino cherries were just for alcoholics.


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©2015 David Glenn Rinehart