Tell the Truth and Let People Get Pissed

This just in: Chickenshit language is for chickenshits:  “The Park District declined to make CEO Michael Kelly available for an interview.” The park district didn’t “decline” to “make Kelly available.” Kelly refused to answer questions about the involvement of the public, taxpayer-funded agency which he leads and from which he makes a comfortable living on the taxpayer dime. Let’s be clear. [snip] “Officials have previously said they honored so-called basic requests such as covering the cost for the NFL to rent the Auditorium Theatre, which is owned by Roosevelt University. Choose Chicago CEO Don Welsh said sponsors and donations will … Continue reading Tell the Truth and Let People Get Pissed

Saturday Odds & Sods: Last Fair Deal Gone Down

Fred G. Johnson- Cavalcades of Wonder. jpg

I’ve sidelined the Who in their football helmets in lieu of the sideshow banner by Fred G. Johnson you see above. And, no, it’s not the Republican primary field. It just resembles them.

Summer has come to the town formerly known as Debrisville. We’ve had a lot of tropical type rain and wind but nothing to compare to Houston. I have some good friends in H-Town and wish people on both sides of the spectrum would stop playing politics with natural disasters. I know they won’t but they should.

The other day I took a walk around my hood, and chatted with Mr. White who is, of course, black. Seems to always work out that way. He’s getting up there in years, I think he’s around 80. I’ve been talking to him for years but didn’t know his name until recently.

Our neighborhood is in its second wave of gentrification. The first wave brought folks like Dr. A and me who respected the customs and folkways of this once working class neighborhood. The latest wave is altogether different: there are some unfriendly people who bitch and moan about living near the parade route. The ones who are willing to chat are shocked when I say that’s one reason we moved here. It takes all kinds.

Back to my chat with Mr. White. He started off by saying: “Let me axe you somethin'”

“Sure, ” I said.

“What you call these young ‘uns with the scraggly beards and small hats? You know the ones who be ridin’ their bikes, wearin’ long sleeve shirts, and bow ties even when it’s hotter than hell. What you call them?”

“Hipsters, ” I replied.

“That’s right. Fuck them.”

So it goes.

This week’s theme song was written by the enigmatic blues legend Robert Johnson. We’ll start with a version by the man himself, followed by a version by a dude with one of the greatest stage names ever: Keb Mo who started life as Kevin Moore.

Given how laced with word play Last Fair Deal Gone Down is, I’m sure Johnson would have loved saying Keb Mo’s name as much as I do. More word play after the break.

Continue reading “Saturday Odds & Sods: Last Fair Deal Gone Down”

An educational “outing” for the Republicans in the State of Wisconsin

It’s tough living with a secret that could force people to look at you in a different way. Friends and colleagues give you that “I thought I KNEW YOU!” look as they ponder their new reality. Some will denounce you for being that which you vehemently opposed. Others will quickly scramble to defend you with false-front excuses or seek to help you find a way to “repent for your sin.” Knowing all of this, many people with these deep secrets do their best to keep them quiet or disclose them only in passing to a few trusted members of an … Continue reading An educational “outing” for the Republicans in the State of Wisconsin

Coach Hush Money

Did anyone see an indictment of former Speaker Denny Hastert coming? Does anyone even remember who he is? The answer to both questions is no. Coach Speaker only became the figurehead (the real leader was the Bug Man, Tom Delay) of House Republicans because both Newt Gingrich and the Gret Stet’s own Bob Livingston had zipper problems. That was even more inconvenient for House GOPers back then because they were engaged in what Charlie Pierce calls “the pursuit of the President’s penis.” The indictment is vague as to the why but we know the what: Hastert was being blackmailed and paid … Continue reading Coach Hush Money

Friday Ferretblogging: Guest Ferret Edition

This is Nebula, the fluffiest stuffykins in the whole wide world, and currently a resident at the Greater Chicago Ferret Association shelter, which AS IT SO HAPPENS is accepting donations for the care of homeless fuzzies who can no longer live with me because Claire would eat them if they came near her. Just look at this fat little stripy head trying to be vicious:   LEMME OUT I KEEL YOU. Then when you do open the cage door, she just about licks you to death. A. Continue reading Friday Ferretblogging: Guest Ferret Edition

Friday Catblogging: Chameleon Headhunters

I missed all the excitement at my house the other day. That’s what I get for sleeping in. Oscar and Della Street cornered a chameleon. Their hunting instincts kicked in but they’re out of practice. When Dr. A realized it was a lizard and not a palmetto bug, she spared its life. Here are the fearless headhunters in action. Actually, they only got its tail but I’m setting up the Herbie Hancock reference for the end of the post: Here’s the chameleon after Dr. A rescued it and placed the poor bastard on the porch: The other Chameleon in this post … Continue reading Friday Catblogging: Chameleon Headhunters

The Why Not Me Campaign

For those of who us who like strange and quirky campaigns, 2016 is shaping up to be a corker. Everybody is running for President. George Bloody Pataki has come out of retirement to run for the GOP nomination. Nobody was demanding a Pataki candidacy, but he looked at the field and said: “Why not me? I took out Mario Cuomo and served 3 terms as Governor in Albany.” He’s not the first former New York Governor to run for President, but he’s the only one to do so nearly 10 years after leaving office. He looked at the field and said: … Continue reading The Why Not Me Campaign

Tweet Of The Day: Duggar Days Edition

The aroma of schadenfreude hangs heavy in the air after the Josh Duggar revelations. The only thing more satisfying than the exposure of this sanctimonious hypocrite would be seeing his predatory ass behind bars. That looks unlikely, but the scandal has damaged the Family Research Council and TLC. Who wants to sponsor the We Protect Pedophiles Hour, after all? That brings us to the Tweet of the day. It’s rare that someone who calls themselves the fake anything on the Tweeter Tube is the real deal. Dan Savage is the exception to that rule. This Tweet is what the kids in the 1920’s … Continue reading Tweet Of The Day: Duggar Days Edition

Joke Line on Politics: ‘A Thought Experiment’

Nothing is real to these assholes. After declaring the ongoing Dumpster fire in the Republican primary “the best GOP field in years,” Joe Klein goes on to say: Jeb Bush, son and brother of other Bushes, is the Republican default position–if not quite the favorite to win. He is conducting a major thought experiment. It involves the proposition that a conservative who is not suffering from red-meat poisoning can win the Republican nomination. Bush has had tough times in recent weeks, mangling answers to inevitable questions like whether he would have gone to war in Iraq, but I watched him … Continue reading Joke Line on Politics: ‘A Thought Experiment’

Burn Baby Burn: 13 Flag Funeral

Confederate battle flags were set ablaze or buried in 13 Southern states on Memorial Day. It was inspired, and loosely coordinated, by Florida artist John Sims: Sims, 47, has been playing with Confederate flag imagery for about 15 years, creating works of art and installations in New York, Virginia and other states. In 2004, one of his installations in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, featured a Confederate flag hanging from a noose, eliciting angry calls to shut down the exhibition. Aside from the usual online chatter, Monday’s “burials” went off without a backlash. The events, which were simultaneously streamed online Monday, consisted mainly … Continue reading Burn Baby Burn: 13 Flag Funeral

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Ellington Uptown

The title Ellington Uptown evokes style and class. The Duke had both to spare. This album has a confusing string of re-issues with different tracks and artwork. The first cover with Duke in the spotlight dates from the LP’s original American release in 1951. Try as I might I couldn’t unearth a date for the second cover although my hunch is that it’s a European and/or UK release of about the same vintage but it’s a guess. That’s *my* mood indigo, apparently. Here’s the original album in the playlist format: Continue reading Album Cover Art Wednesday: Ellington Uptown

So Much to Lose

Dear God, the inability to listen to yourself:  “The world is a very scary place right now, especially for people of means; they feel cornered and threatened,” said Tom Gaffney, the president of Gaffco Ballistics, which has installed a number of safe rooms around New York City. “When you have so much to lose, and you can afford to, you put a premium on your safety.” Safe rooms were popularized as “panic rooms” by the director David Fincher’s 2002 thriller of that name — one that the screenwriter David Koepp has admitted he made up because “safe room” did not carry quite the same … Continue reading So Much to Lose

Memorial Day: Who I Remember

There’s nothing like a national holiday to make one feel ritualistic.This post was written in 2010 and is making its sixth annual appearance here at First Draft: The veteran I’d like to remember on this solemn holiday is the late Sgt. Eddie Couvillion. My family tree is far too tangled and gnarly to describe here but suffice it to say that Eddie was my second father. He served in Europe during World War II, not in combat but in the Army Quartermaster Corps. In short, he was a supply Sergeant, one of those guys who won the war by keeping the … Continue reading Memorial Day: Who I Remember

‘That’s the excuse of losers.’

GOD THIS SO MUCH THIS MARRY ME NOW:  Yesterday, as part of an Internet Week New York panel entitled, “The Future of Media”, USA TODAY’s editor-in-chief, David Callaway, was quoted as saying that the newspaper could stop publishing as a daily print product in the next “five or six years”. I guess it’s not surprising. And it’s not surprising simply because print media is on the downswing. That’s the excuse of losers. The excuse of hand-wringers who have no idea what to do. The excuse of the unimaginative. The excuse of those who don’t have the thrill of challenges & … Continue reading ‘That’s the excuse of losers.’

Saturday Odds & Sods: Riding With The King

Mad Men Season 6

I’m having mild Mad Men withdrawal symptoms so I thought I’d use the season 6 poster one more time.  I suspect my friend Termite is annoyed to have to see her Mad Men bete noir, Megan, but nobody said life was fair. At least her big, scary teeth aren’t showing.

In the midst of my MM withdrawals, I’ve found a pretty swell new teevee addiction on Netflix. The British period gangster show, Peaky Blinders, which is set in post-Great War Birmingham. The show is grittier than a gravel road and has one of the weirdest titles ever. The Anglo-Irish gang involved is based on a real world gang called the Peaky Blinders, which may sound unmanly to the Bloods and Crips but I quite like it.

This week’s theme song, Riding With The King, was written by John Hiatt in 1983. I’m feeling a bit thematically excessive so I’m posting two versions. The first one is by the man himself with Sonny Landreth and the Goners. The second continues our BB-fest and was the title track of the album he did in 2000 with Eric Clapton.

More words and music after the break.

Continue reading “Saturday Odds & Sods: Riding With The King”

Malaka Of The Week: Carly Fiorina

Carly Fiorina’s career seems to based on the upward failure principle. She ran Hewlett-Packard into the ground, fired 30,000 employees, and turned what was once one of the best places in the world to work into an (Ayn) Randian hellhole. But her “candidacy” for the GOP nomination is why Carly Fiorina is malaka of the week. After failing in business. Fiorina failed in politics. She was banned from the 2008 McCain campaign for trashing the candidate. I’ll give her a mulligan for trashing Sarah Palin. In 2010, she ran for the Senate in California against Barbara Boxer. It was, of course, … Continue reading Malaka Of The Week: Carly Fiorina

Thursday Night Music: Beautiful Now

Today is Dr. A and my anniversary. We’re low keying it tonight by eating some homemade (by lil ole me) beef stew and celebrating tomorrow. I thought it was only fitting to dedicate this Waterboys song to her. The lyrics are quite appropriate. I’m not quite sure where the bumper cars fit in but Mike Scott is as cryptic as Matthew Weiner so there you have it:   Continue reading Thursday Night Music: Beautiful Now

Happy National Pothole Day

You may have heard that potholes are a longstanding problem here in New Orleans. I suspect the rest of you lot have your share as well. A New Orleans group called Fix My Streets has declared today National Pothole Day. There’s already such a day in the United Kingdom, which is celebrated on January, 16. It’s bound to be a perennial holiday there after the re-election of the Tory austerity government. Repeat after me: Posh Boys = Potholes. I know what you’re thinking: another man/woman made holiday. All holidays are created by someone and this beats the hell out of the … Continue reading Happy National Pothole Day

‘What’s my job, right?’ On the CIA, False Intelligence, and Other Obligations

What was your job?  MATTHEWS: You’re the briefer for the president on intelligence, you’re the top person to go in and tell him what’s going on. You see Cheney make this charge he’s got a nuclear bomb and then they make subsequent charges he knew how to deliver it…and nobody raised their hand and said, “No that’s not what we told him.” MORELL: Chris, Chris Chris, what’s my job, right? My job— MATTHEWS: To tell the truth. MORELL: My job—no, as the briefer? As the briefer? MATTHEWS: Okay, go ahead. MORELL: As the briefer, my job is to carry CIA’s … Continue reading ‘What’s my job, right?’ On the CIA, False Intelligence, and Other Obligations