Monthly Archives: June 2010

Weekend Question Thread: Unpopular Culture Edition

On Twilight:

When will this end?

No, seriously, I’m asking you for the time
and date at which it will end. I’m looking into having myself
cryogenically frozen until the moment when I don’t have to hear about
whether or not that kid who washes his hair with KFC Double Downs is
still dating Slumpy McDeadeyes.

What’s your pop culture peeve right now?

A.

Friday Night Music: The Stray Cat Variations

I screwed up last night and somehow wound up posting duplicate catblogging posts much to Tommy T’s bemusement and mine as well. I’m not sure what happened but obviously there were some stray cats involved so this time I’ll intentionally post two catty tunes. The first one features the, uh, Stray Cats featuring Brian Setzer, his big hair and tattoos. Jeez, that’s a whole lotta featuring. Just call it a creature feature:

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The second tune features the ego of Mick Jagger and Keith’s craggy countenance:

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Al Gore’s Penis

We totally needed fewer people in the press that hate stupidity. That’s something we need right now, whileHowie Kurtz is salivating over Al Gore’s jock.

Maybe I’m confusing him with Kerry, but I always thought the line on Gore was that he was most likely gay, what with all the earth tones and being concerned about the environment and very faggy things like that. Shouldn’t the allegation that he became a sexually assaultive creep provoke admiration among those espousing the idea that Washington power is all about dick anyway? By which I mean, shouldn’t Howard be all, “Way to go brah” and hand-slappy instead of pissily resentful?

I’m really, really impressed that Kurtz managed to cover this by covering the Enquirer covering it. It’s a time-honored journalistic tradition, that: Don’t cover the scummy thing itself, cover the “phenomenon” surrounding it. Cover that it’s “spreading like wildfire on the Internet” or “has provoked much discussion among Washington movers and shakers” or something. That way you get to giggle over “therapeutic massage” a few hundred times like the adolescent blowhole that you are without having to get any of those icky Enquirer cooties on you.

I mean, Jesus, at least the Enquirer had the stones to publish the story itself, instead of just tittering at it from the sidelines while maintaining plausible journalistic deniability.

A.

—–

Betsy (Part II)

Here’s part two of the story that kept my occupied while I was on total bed rest last week.Here’s part one in case you missed it. Also, since there seemed to be some hostility toward the “haigiography
of a gas guzzling testament
to why we
don’t have widespread public transportation,” you can feel free to skip this. Or, you can feel free to substitute “
planet-killing
vehicle of extinction and death that I should be ashamed for loving” for every referent to the car.

Onward…

—–

While popular, the Ford Mustang was not without it’s flaws.
Deep wells in the trunk’s sides left the quarter panels vulnerable to rust. The
floor pan of the car was one solid piece and relatively thin, making rust not
only an aesthetic problem, but also a safety issue. The seats bolted right
through the pan and thus if rust ran rampant across the it, you could literally
fall through the floor of the car.

Even worse, a design flaw in the assembly of the cowl
allowed debris to build up in the outside vents. Water would then flow into the
cowl when it rained but couldn’t leave the cowl area. This caused the cowl to
rust through and allow water to pour into the car under the dash.

They didn’t call them “Rustangs” for nothing.

Additionally, the engines tended to leak oil here and there.
Ford also didn’t include grease fittings on certain parts of the car, which led
to squeaking control arms and tie rods that could snap with little warning.

In short, a lot could go wrong.

—–

When I was about 2 years old, my father had a feeling
similar to the one I was having and a car became his happy place.

He’d spotted a 1974 Corvette sitting on a lawn across from
the bowling alley he frequented. Mom urged him to consider it.

“If you want it, you should get it,” she told him.

Easier said than done.

They were making ends meet, but were not in great financial
shape. They were paying off their first home on the salary of a factory worker
and an elementary school teacher.

Still, at Mom’s urging, Dad took the car for a spin.

It was love at first gear. Dad bought it.

It was that same car that helped save me from making one of
the biggest mistakes of my life.

I was considering marrying someone that everyone except me
knew was bad for me. She was making me miserable, but I thought that was part of
getting older and getting married. Even more, the misery had been slow
building, making it harder for me to see how it was impacting me.

One weekend, I was in Milwaukee with my fiancée and my
folks. Dad was sick, my fiancée was being a twit and we were all supposed to go
to church together. Instead, just Mom and I were going.

“If it’s just the two of us,” she told me, “pull the Vette
out of the garage.”

We went to church and then we drove around a bit, stopping
for ice cream somewhere along the way. I noticed that when I was driving the
car, I was smiling, something I hadn’t done in a long time. I noticed I was
happy, again a rare feeling those days.

It dawned on me that I shouldn’t feel the way I felt when I
was with my fiancée. My friends were right. I broke the engagement off several
weeks later and started carving out a new path in life.

I dare say it isn’t hyperbole to note that the car saved my
life.

——

By the late 1980s, Betsy was a garage car. Ginny had
purchased another car for every day use after Betsy had developed a number of
major problems. The heater no longer worked, the carb was gagging and the valve
covers were leaking oil. Coolant had begun to drip from the block, the
alternator was starting to go and the ignition coil was bad.

The seals between the windows and the doors had grown
brittle and chipped. Water poured down the driver’s side window and into the
door, rusting it from the inside out.

The car tires rotted from lack of use and mice had taken
over the interior. Nests were popping up everywhere from the cowl through the
headliner. The smell of mildew and age had settled into every porous surface.

Still, Ginny kept her. Giving up on her would be like giving
up on a family member. Too much history, too much time together.

Finally after almost 20 years in storage, a friend convinced
Ginny it was time. He brokered a deal to take Betsy off her hands.

She signed over the title in April of 2009.

The day a flatbed truck arrived to take Betsy away, Ginny
couldn’t watch.

——

The best thing about Mustangs is that people love them and
tended to keep them. Because they remained popular over the years, Ford kept
making them. These two things conspired to create a staggering after-market
production of replacement parts. While collectors who wanted pristine show cars
were willing to pay astronomical prices for original equipment, folks who
considered their ponies to be daily drivers could fix about anything for 1/10th
of the price.

When the flatbed truck arrived at the repair shop in Fond du
Lac, Betsy was a sight for sore eyes. The goal of the mechanics working on here
was to get her running well enough to turn a quick profit.

She got new plugs, wires, a cap, a rotor, a PCV valve, an
air filter, an oil filter, an ignition coil, a computer, a battery and an
alternator. The entire cooling system, including the water pump, was replaced,
with new hoses and belts.

She got new oil, a transmission fluid change and a greased
up suspension. The rotten tires were replaced by four new white walls and every
part of the braking system from the master cylinder through the lines to the
pads were replaced.

While this may seem like a massive undertaking, those
after-market parts made the repairs possible. Had Betsy been an Edsel or a
Nash, such a job would have been a fool’s errand.

She wasn’t perfect and she had many more problems, but she
started, she ran and she was road-worthy.

Less than three months after she had parted company from
Ginny, Betsy was sold again.

A dealer on the outskirts of Milwaukee had bought her with
the goal of making her a show car.

——

I forgot what I was looking for that September afternoon. I
was trolling Craigslist for something my Dad had wanted. I don’t remember what
it was, but I know I never found it. For reasons past my own understanding, I
punched the word “MUSTANG” into the search engine and let it whirl.

I should have known better. That summer, the Craigslist
Killer, Philip Markoff, was making headlines across the country. Sure, I wasn’t
looking for the same kinds of things he was, but fear of a dangerous situation
wasn’t unfounded.

Less than a year earlier, a UW-Milwaukee student named
Haroon Khan was killed while trying to sell his car
. The story gained national
notoriety and served as a reminder that some times, a deal can be deadly.

With a bit of fear still scratching at the corners of my
mind, I avoided ads that looked suspicious. Anything that said to meet them at
a home in a place I’d never heard of, well… thanks, but no thanks.

Most of the Mustangs were from the 1990s. Those that were
older were either trailer queens or reclamation projects.

Just before I closed the window, one last ad caught my eye:

1968 Mustang: Hott Wheelz, Cudahy, WI

The car, the year and the price weren’t what got me. It was
the location.

My parents, their parents and their parents’ parents had
grown up in Cudahy, a small factory town in the greater Milwaukee area.

The address placed the dealership approximately eight blocks
from where my grandmother used to live.

——

The end of September was coming up fast on Lou and Mike. The
men ran a modest car lot in the heart of downtown Cudahy. The town’s main drag
was lined with homey taverns and was punctuated by the edifice of Ladish
Company. The giant factory helped power the town since the turn of the century,
producing everything from jet-engine parts to rolled rings for the Space
Shuttle. The foundry had seen boom times and bust times as had the rest of the
town.

Right now, it was anybody’s guess what kind of time it was,
but for the owners of this car lot, it was time to roll up the sidewalks.

The Hott Wheelz car lot stood on the 4900 block of Packard
Avenue, sandwiched between an antique car restoring business and an Oreck
vacuum dealership. The men had bought and sold everything from sports cars through minivans and had done all right for themselves. However, a number of factors had
transpired to make it necessary for them to close up shop.

The garage stalls and car lifts were unused and instead
served as a storage area for their tools and a few cars they didn’t want to
leave outside at night. In one stall sat Lou’s 1964 Chevy. In the other sat a Mustang
they’d wanted to restore, but had neither the time nor money to finish the job.

Instead, the men posted an ad on Craigslist, hoping to sell
the car. If all else failed, they would take it and whatever was left of their
inventory that was worth anything to a car show in Jefferson on the last
weekend in September.

Either way, they figured they’d be able to move at least one
more car before they turned off the lights and handed over the keys.

——

With the Midget and Dad in tow, I ventured over to a small,
grimy car dealership on Packard Avenue. I was in town to judge a debate
tournament that weekend and I managed to get in a bit earlier than expected.
The rush-hour traffic I predicted for Milwaukee failed to materialize and thus
I had a couple hours to kill.

When I asked Dad to take a ride to see a Mustang, he was
skeptical.

“Never heard of the place,” he said. “You sure about this?”

No, I wasn’t sure.

I wasn’t sure what the hell I was doing, where this place
was, where I’d get the money if I liked the car, if the car was worth buying,
if I was going insane or if the three of us wouldn’t be gagged, thrown in a
van, killed and buried in a shallow grave behind Patrick Cudahy’s pork
processing plant.

I was many things. Sure wasn’t one of them.

Still, I went. And after two failed attempts, we found the
place. The Mustang was nowhere in sight. No car on the lot seemed to be worth
more than about 12 bucks.

A short Hispanic guy emerged from the makeshift office and
asked if he could help us.

“Did you guys advertise a Mustang for sale?” I asked.

“Yeah. Come on in the garage.”

The first thing I noticed about her was the color. Gold. The
photos made her appear to be the color of pea soup, leading one friend to note,
“You need to tell them to knock two grand off the price so you can repaint it
and get rid of that puke green.”

There was some rust on the rear quarters, a dent in the
vinyl top and some nicks in the paint. It could have been a lot worse.

The interior was.

The seats were torn up, the rear deck was in pieces and the
shifter looked bent. Mice had eaten away at the headliner and petrified mouse
shit was everywhere. The dash had a long, wide crack in it and the glove box’s
face was rusting. The chrome paint had peeled off the gauges.The fuzzies that lined the windows were
cracked apart and the rear quarter window wouldn’t raise or lower on the
driver’s side.

The problems were pouring into my head.

“Does it run?” I asked.

“Yeah,” he said. “Great motor. 289. I can find the keys if
you want.”

I checked the time. I needed to be somewhere in an hour and
I had a 45-minute drive in front of me.

“No. I’ll pass.” Pause. “What do you have to get for it?”

He told me the price, about $1,200 less than what he posted
on Craigslist.

“OK. I gotta go. Thanks for the help… I didn’t catch your
name.”

“Lou.”

“Thanks, Lou.”

I looked back at the car in the garage. Of all the cars I’d
seen and all the ones I’d bought or drooled over, none really ever seemed to
call to me.

This one actually spoke.

“Please take me home. You won’t regret it.”

(Continued next week.)

Friday Ferretblogging: Triumvirate Edition

A rare public meeting of Ferret War Command:

Newthree

A.

Friday Catblogging: Blue Spear Blues

Young Della Street is like Dr. A in one way: they both love the Krewe of Muses and their nifty throws like this spear. I’m not sure where Della got this one; maybe from Aunt Wendy:

Blue Spear Blues

Honest Services & Conrad Black

Thank you, conservative court:

The courtsaid Thursday that the “honest services” law could not be used in convicting Mr. Skilling for his role in the collapse of Enron. But JusticeRuth Bader Ginsburg said in her majority opinion that the ruling does not necessarily require Mr. Skilling’s conviction to be overturned.

During arguments in December and March, several justices seemed
inclined to limit prosecutors’ use of this law, which critics have said
is vague and has been used to make a crime out of mistakes and minor
transgressions in the business and political world.

The court, at the same time, rejected Mr. Skilling’s assertion that he
did not get a fair trial in Houston because of harshly critical
publicity surrounding the case in Enron’s hometown.

The court in this ruling also sided with the former newspaper magnate, Conrad Black, setting aside
a federal appeals court decision that had upheld Mr. Black’s honest
services fraud conviction. But as in Mr. Skilling’s case, the justices
left the ultimate resolution of the case to the appeals court.

[snip]

Mr. Black, serving a 6 1/2-year prison term, and two other former
executives were convicted of depriving the Hollinger International
media empire of their faithful services as corporate officers.The
company once owned The Chicago Sun-Times, The Daily Telegraph of
London, The Jerusalem Post and hundreds of community papers across the
United States and Canada.

Central to the case is $5.5 million that the defendants say were
management fees they were owed and were trying to collect in such a way
that they would not have to pay Canadian income tax. The government
says the money belonged to the company’s shareholders.

Yeah. Stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars, running decent newspapers into the ground, depriving entire communities of access to information by having your minions redline them out of coverage areas because of fucking economics, fucking over employees year after year after year … that’s just fucking great. That’s just awesome. I’m less concerned about the shareholders, who did indeed get screwed, but that’s just because I’m some fucking idiot who actually thinks corporations have a responsibility to their employees and customers. I know, I’m a fucking moron, okay? I’m sorry, I’m still into journalism as public service. I’ll give you a minute to point and laugh and then we can get back to business.

You know, in the absence of any meaningful punishment for this motherfucker, we’re going to have to resort to old-fashioned shunning. Wherein decent people refuse to receive the sleazy son of a bitch in their homes, refuse to shake his hand in public, leave him off the party invite list, and throw rotten fruit and hiss whenever he speaks to the assembled plebes.

At the very least, this is what can happen. It’s fun for sensible, respectable liberals to bag on people like Code Pink for showing up in costumes and screaming at Karl Rove when he appears in public, or standing up covered in oil when Tony Hayward pokes his head out of his hole because “that won’t change anything.” It’s fun to talk about how it’s a turnoff, or it’s counterproductive, because then we can just kick back and congratulate ourselves for not being so damn loud and annoying.

But lately, with all the looking forward we’re doing and not looking back, with all the TOTAL AND COMPLETE UNWILLINGNESS TO PUNISH ANYBODY FOR ANYTHING, with motherfuckers like Black being sent to lovely resort prison instead ofOffice Space prison, if all that can be done to these assholes is some good olden-times public shaming, then I say fuck yeah to the people doing it and here’s some cash come payday. I say we need more of that, not less, and I applaud it wherever and whenever it happens.

I suffer from no delusion that the Important People will refuse to invite Conrad places. He, like Bush and Rumsfeld and Cheney and Dougie Feith, will always have a job and a place to go when he’s lonely. And hopefully somebody will be there, shouting at him to rot in hell, as uncouth and annoying as that may be.

A.

Malaka Of The Week: The Huffington Post

I’m not sure if I should be using the singular or the plural version of malaka but the Huff Post has hit a new low. The offending, as well as offensive, post belongs in a super market tabloid devoted to tales of Big Foot and space aliens. I have never been a fan of the Huff Post and cannot stand Ariana Huffington who is an arrogant, trendhopping opportunist. One of my earliest posts at First Draft was entitledSatan’s Botoxed Handmaiden, which is my friend Kevin Allman’s pet name for his bete noir.

Enough set-up. The reason this week’s “honor” goes to the Huff Post is that they published a specious, speculative and downright untrue storyRaining Oil In Louisiana? They tried to cover their asses via punctuation and by posting a survey at the bottom of the post asking readers if they believed the story and the following video:

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My fellowNOLA blogger Dambala was in suburban River Ridge when the alleged oily rain came down there. There was no fucking oil but the hills are alive with the sound of malakatude courtesy of Satan’s Botoxed Handmaiden and her underhanded underlings.

One last piece of evidence in support of the utter malakatude of the Huff Post. Their video source likes to post his extreme teabaggerish views online.Again, this is via Dambala:

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As my late mother was fond of saying: Consider the source and this source is malakatudinous…

‘Storm of the Century of the Week’

Chicagoist on the CRAZY WEATHER SO CRAZY. Last night was the first time I’ve heard tornado sirens in Chicago. Growing up in Wisconsin, we’d have bad storms occasionally but, as my mother would always remind us when huddling freaked-out in the basement, we were too close to the lake for a real tornado, and I had assumed the same applied here since in twelve years, no sirens.

They went off last night and Mr. A and I packed up the dingos and moved them into the hallway as directed by the building apocalypse plan, and we watched as the rain lashed and the wind blew. Puck slept through most of the whole thing, Riot was unconcerned and more focused on getting into my lap on top of the warm laptop, but Bucky jumped and eeped a few times. The power flickered but never went out, which is weird, because my block loses power when somebody downtown sneezes.

This morning, we still had power, but no Internet (cable down) so I set off on my bike in search of access. My local coffee shop and office-away-from-home had no power at all and a big sign that said basically, try us tomorrow, maybe ComEd will have unfucked itself by then. My office had no power either, which I learned when I flicked on the air conditioning and nothing happened. Hope nothing important’s in the fridge. The second choice of coffee shop, on the same block as the building where I work, was also out as was the traffic light, and lots of bad-natured honking and cursing was going on. Tree limbs all over the ‘hood, people out all over the place cleaning up their lawns.

Across the street, though, thrice-blessed Caribou, with coffee, wifi, lights on, and a line out the door. Dunno if they have a generator or what, I do not care. I stalked and stared until some people left their table and now I’m hooked back into the Matrix. Did I miss anything, other than the usual right-wing fuckery and everybody being upset because Obama didn’t suck McChrystal’s dick?

A.

The Clowns Go Marching One by One…

FromAlbum3

Sure, Glenn Beck’s a lost cause in so many ways, butthis is getting ridiculous.

Wednesday Night Music: Billie Holiday Edition

There’s a myth that Lady Day couldn’t sing any more near the end of her life. Untrue. She lost some of her range but her voice lost none of its expressive power.

I’m particularly fond of a record Billie cut for Verve in 1957, Songs For Distingue Lovers. She was surrounded by some brilliant players, Harry “Sweets” Edison’s mournful trumpet is the standout on the track below: Arlen and Mercer’sOne for My Baby (and One More for the Road) a classic torch/saloon song written for Fred Astaire but perfect for Billie. So, set ’em up, Joe:

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Bill Clinton’s Inner Monologue

During the USA match:

This man is stressed out about the game; he does not want to have to
listen to Sepp Blatter make awkward small talk anymore. Clinton — a
renowned international charmer and the husband of one of the most
important diplomats in the world — is very unsubtly telling Blatter to
shut his gob and just watch the game already, because DeMarcus Beasley
has come on and Clinton needs to think about whether he should go down
and open a can of Arkansas whupass on Bob Bradley’s face.

No, he doesn’t know of any good secretaries who might be willing to
make the move to Zurich, Sepp. Shut up. Just shut up already, why he
won’t shut up? Oh my god Donovan
scoredintheninetiethminutethatisawesomeIneedaBigMacwithextracheeserightnow.
Now now now. Sepp get out of my way. Get off me Sepp. No, don’t
invite me to the FIFA Christmas party. Yeah yeah, thanks for the seat.
Yeah whatever, USA rules, oh hey Edson, what’s up?

A.

McChrystal Cracked

I’d come around to the McChrystal must go viewpoint so I’m gladit happened so quickly.Not only does he deserve to be shitcanned for mouthing off but his favorite beer is Bud Lite Lime. Holy girl drink, Batman.

On a serious note, I thought it was politically ingenious to slide Petraeus into the command slot. The wingers have expressed such unconditional love for him that it will be *harder* for them to gin up outrage over this.

What will happen to them in October, BP?

Whoopers

A whooping crane in the wild is an astounding sight. If you’re lucky to be close enough to view one without binoculars, the first thing that strikes you is the size. An adult whooper stands 5 feet tall and has a wing span of 7.5 feet, blindingly white body plumage, black wingtips, a striking red and black mask, and large dark beak. They are magnificent animals and getting to watch them in their winter habitat atAransas National Wildlife Refuge, near where I grew up, made an indelible impression on me as a kid. Without a doubt, that’s one of the reasons I became a naturalist. It made a difference in how I saw the world, to see these birds, knowing there were literally just a handful left on the planet, that an animal so majestic and large (bigger than me at the time) was so vulnerable, that we humans had been so careless with such a treasure.

The population has grown since then and the establishment of asecond flock and eastern migration led by ultra-light aircraft is a monumental success story in wildlife management. Still though, as of January this year, there were only 398 birds alive in the wild,150 in captive breeding programs. Less than 600 on the planet.

Of those in the wild, most will winter atAransas, and the others in Florida. That will be in October.

Four months, with a hurricane season between then and now. Where will the oil be then? What will happen between then and now to the brackish marshes and estuaries this species is dependent on for survival? Last year, the drought in central Texas so impacted the flow of the Guadalupe River that the salinity of San Antonio Bay increased, and23 Aransas whoopers died of malnutrition from the lack of blue crabs, wolfberries and fresh water. That’s howdelicate their supporting ecosystem isalready, without BP’s oil destroying it. The situation in Florida is even more dire, threatening to destroy two decades of work towardestablishing the eastern migratory flyway between Florida and Wisconsin.

Ever since the first instant I heard about the Deepwater Horizon blowout, I have had a couple of recurring thoughts that won’t go away. First, selfishly, I am truly grateful that my father is dead and can’t see what’s happened to the Gulf, his real home as well as his workplace. (He ate and slept at the house, sure, but he couldn’t wait to get back out on the water every day.)

Second, and more urgently, what will happen to the whooping cranes? What happens to us if we let them be destroyed?

Ultralight

—–

Furor Over Vitter’s Henchman Furer

Louisiana Senator David Vitter is known for his slashing
political style.ABC is reporting that
one of his top aides, Brent Furer seems to take that literally and to
carry it over into his private life.

Hmm, I wonder if Gret Stet Christians will continue to
forgive their favorite wingnut whoremonger for having a knife wielding
thug on his staff. I’m not sure how this will play out but it gives Charlie Melancon’s campaign a pulse; especially since Furer worked on women’s issues for Vitter. I am not making that last bit up.

Instant Update:The
aide in question, the aptly named Brent Furer, has just resigned.

So Here’s Some Folks What Need to Be Kicked in the Dick

Adding Spirit to the list of airlines I will never use no matter how cheap the flights are:

Spirit Airlines — they of the multi-year labor dispute and the charge
for carry-on bags — would like to encourage you to buy tickets to
Cancun, Puerto Rico, Atlantic City or Fort Lauderdale with a timely new
ad campaign calledBestProtection. The tag line? “Check out the oil on our beaches.”

You know, seriously, I am coming around to Doc’s refrain that shit only matters when it happens to New York or DC, because as much as wingnuts love to hate on these places ten seconds after a terrorist attack there, I’ve never seen such a goddamn disconnect between … I mean, UNITED AIRLINES is run entirely by gaping assholes and even their post-9/11 ad campaign was respectful and kind of sweet. There’s a way to be a human in here.

And then along come these fuckholes, and who seriously thinks this is okay? I mean, a bunch of people are sitting around a room, looking over an ad campaign, and not one person has a cousin or a friend or even a warm memory of a summer vacation spent in Gulf Shores, Alabama? (Lovely little restaurant there, boardwalky-type thing, first time I ever ate real fresh crabmeat.) Nobody says, “Guys, erm.” Nobody?

A.

McChrystal Blue Persuasion

General Stanley McChrystal and his staff have big mouths. They didn’t
tell a reporter that stuff was off the record when they were in bars and
eateries.Another
fine story from Rolling Stone this time around by freelancer Michael Hastings.

I’m too lazy to dig for the bullet points on my own so I’ll let the Gray Lady do the talking:

A McChrystal aide is quoted saying of Mr. Holbrooke: “The Boss says he’s
like a wounded animal. Holbrooke keeps hearing rumors that he’s going
to be fired, so that makes him dangerous.”

On another occasion, General McChrystal is described as reacting with
exasperation when he receives an e-mail message from Mr. Holbrooke. “Oh,
not another e-mail from Holbrooke. I don’t even want to open it.”

The article also describes a conversation in which General McChrystal
and an aide talk about Mr. Biden. Mr. Biden is known to have opposed the
decision to escalate the war, preferring instead a slimmed-down plan
focused on containing terrorism.

“Are you asking about Vice President Biden?” General McChrystal jokes.

“Biden?” suggests a top adviser. “Did you say ‘Bite me?’ “

Classic trash talk or bar room bravado. But why on earth did they not go OFF THE FUCKING RECORD? I have friends in the MSM and we always explicitly ask one another that something be off the record or unattributed; especially if it’s juicy. This is juicy.

Bob Gates has already rebuked the wayward (there’s that word again) General. John Kerry is urging caution.Steve Clemons wants his ass fired.

Right now, I lean towards a stern rebuke unless the Veep wants McChrystal gone. Given Biden’s own history, he’s likely to be forgiving of the General making a pun that he’s heard before. Many times.He’s just biding time…

What do y’all think should happen to McChrystal? Rebuked? Fired? Mocked?

I’m not sure where I’ll end up in this debate but I know one thing for sure: McChrystal rubs me the wrong way and not in a new age flake sorta way. I do, however, love his name, it’s so punworthy. I guess you already noticed that…

Debrisville Bids Adieu To The Mother-in-Law Lounge

Even in a city full of eccentric characters, Ernie and Antoinette Kador aka K-Doe stood out. Ernie was best known for his Sixties hit songMother-in-Law. Like so many other musicians, he hit hard times but then he met Antoinette. She was a real pistol and, if anything, even more eccentric than her husband. They opened a bar/night club together in (where else?) Treme called (what else?) The Mother-in-Law Lounge where the self-styled Emperor of the World held court for until his death in 2001. It became more than a bar, it became an institution as well as a community gathering place.

Both K-Does have passed from this mortal coil and Antoinette’s daughter, Betty Fox, has tried to keep the MIL going but she’s quite simply worn out. She toldKevin Allman of the Gambit Tabloidthat running the lounge was her mama’s thing and that she’d tried keeping it open for the community but that she’ll be closing the place in July. This is sad news but I wish Betty well: running a small business eats one’s life and running a place like the Mother-in-Law takes an even bigger bite.

Here’s a video that I fortuitously stumbled into that features photos of the Mother-in-Law with a certain song playing:

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