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True but Forbidden 2

I was accused of pride by my peripheral friend; my new unfriend – people who with a click of a mouse are excluded from your life forever, with no impact except perhaps a sigh of relief and a nagging, irritating question “why didn’t I do that sooner?” Pride because I dare to write thoughtfully. I am not a mocker by nature, an idiot jester or buffoon. And while I do rage, I try not to write those thoughts down; they do me no good at all, much less anybody who stumbles onto one of my reflections. Plus when I am angry, without the tranquility I so crave, my words become poison.   A Reason, A Season, or a Lifetime | Joel D. Hirst’s Blog

What do you do if your life’s ambition – to become a pilot with the US Air Force – gets shot down by poor eyesight? If you’re Larry Walters, you take matters into your own hands. In 1982 the California truck-driver, unperturbed by the stringent recruitment standards of the USAF, decided to take to the air in his own unique way: by attaching a large cluster of weather balloons to a lawn chair… The plan was to float 30 feet (9 m) above the Mojave Desert for a few hours, then effect a pleasant and gradual descent. To Larry’s horror, however, the chair rose from his yard in San Pedro much faster than expected – he was eventually to reach a maximum altitude of 15,000 feet (4,600 m) – and was soon drifting over Los Angeles and into the primary approach corridor for Long Beach Airport, where he was spotted by several commercial airliners.  The Odysseum: Larry ‘Lawnchair’ Walters (1949-1993) 

Word Around the Net: THE RURAL FUTURE? This sort of feels like Medieval times, with the lord in his castle surrounded by peasants that he protects and allegedly cares for like children, taking from them what he desires to survive with. Feudalism never really has gone away, but its been modified with the times; people still cluster around cities to live off the government’s handouts and pay heavy taxes to the state in exchange for protection and goodies.

The Best Thing That Happened This Week: Emotional Support Chickens for All!

The Age Of Ugly |   The physical ugliness of the age has been cleansed by the sterile aesthetic of Silicon Valley, but the spiritual ugliness of the cultural revolution remains. Glass and stainless steel cannot mask it. That ugliness is what is fueling the populist movements. In Europe and America, the natives, physically and culturally divorced from their rulers, are now looking for alternative sources of authority. The people are recoiling at the ugly world created for them by their rulers, so the slow search for new rulers has begun. No one thinks about it quite like that yet, but in time, that corner will be turned. We’ll move from reform to the idea of starting fresh and leaving the ugliness of left-wing radicalism behind.

The blues about the blues |  This came to me as I was listening to a collection of blues solos by Gary Moore, a now-deceased Irishman who played blues with both real heart and a pyrotechnic brilliance you won’t find in Robert Johnson or (one of my own roots favorites) John Lee Hooker. And found myself flinching from the comparison; took me an act of will to name those names just now, even after I’d been steeling myself to it.

Whether thou art a ghost that hath come from the earth, or a phantom of night that hath no couch… or one that lieth dead in the desert… or a ghost unburied… or a hag-demon, or a ghoul, or a robber-sprite, or a weeping woman that hath died with a babe at the breast… Whatever thou be until thou art removed, until thou departest from the body of the man, thou shalt have no water to drink. Thou shalt not stretch forth thy hand… Into the house enter thou not. Through the fence break thou not… Spells Against the Evil Spirits of Babylonia (1903)

How Not To Be Stupid I defined stupidity as overlooking or dismissing conspicuously crucial information. Right? It’s crucial information, like you better pay attention to it. It’s conspicuous, like it’s right in front of your nose and yet you either overlook it or you dismiss it. How not to be stupid, what are the causes of human error—and it took me a couple of months of research just to come up with data points, because most stupidity is ignored or swept under the rug. I studied instances of scientific stupidity and literary stupidity and military stupidity and every other kind of stupidity, as well as two domains that engineer stupidity.

Underground Ecosystem More Diverse Than Life on The Surface   The subterranean biosphere reportedly contains between 15bn and 23bn tonnes of microorganisms, hundreds of times the combined weight of every human on the planet. The discovery is a result of a ten-year-long long study completed by the Deep Carbon Observatory to “€˜understand the quantities, movements, forms, and origins of carbon inside Earth”€™. The Observatory says that despite intense underground conditions including immense pressure and heat, they have discovered evidence of bacteria, archaea, and other microbes 5000 meters below the surface of the earth.

Pana Wave Pana-Wave alleged that a close encounter with an undiscovered 10th planet, predicted for 15 May that year, would cause the Earth’s poles to flip over and lead to catastrophic earthquakes and tsunamis which would destroy most of humankind, and that they were looking for a safe location to ride out the catastrophe. TV images showed members dressed completely in white, complete with white hoods, surgical masks, and white boots. Their vehicles were decorated with swirl patterns which they believed neutralized the invisible waves, and even the steering wheel was covered in white plaster. Nearby trees, bushes, and crash barriers were also covered in white fabric.

We need a bigger world Everybody knows what PC is because we are all members of its church, born into it at birth.  It has sacraments like abortion, blasphemous words one cannot utter, heretical doctrines you cannot hold, individuals canonized by the media you cannot impugn and a roster of the damned with whom you cannot associate. Few say their prayers any more but multitudes spend each day sorting their trash in their backyard altars to the goddess Gaia.  Nonbelievers in Global Warming are anathematized as Deniers; virtue signaling has become the new piety.  And we are familiar with all of it because our conversion until recently seemed all but complete.

‘Ancient’ Stone Circle in Scotland Revealed to be Modern Replica At the time, it was theorized that the stone circle was somewhere between 3,500 and 4,500 years old and had piqued the interest of researchers due to its remarkably pristine condition. “€œIt really doesn’€™t get much better than this,”€ marveled archaeologist Neil Ackerman, who was tasked with examining the site and noted that the discovery of a complete stone circle without any pieces missing was particularly unique. Alas, it turns out that the find was too good to be true as the previous owner of the farm reportedly learned about the commotion coming from his former property and contacted officials in the area with something of a confession: he built the stone circle back in the 1990s as a tribute to the ancient monuments found throughout Scotland.

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  • jwm January 26, 2019, 9:21 AM

    The Enemies of the beast are Goodness, Truth, and Beauty.
    The weapons, in reverse order:
    The media.
    Moral relativity.
    Unfortunately, the beast has had remarkable success in all three areas.
    Who would ever have thought that millions of women would voluntarily destroy their God- given beauty, by allowing their bodies to be tagged up like a partition in a toilet stall?
    Who would imagine that our media would be given over to wholesale lies, and propaganda?
    How did Christianity become public enemy number one?

    Good thing there’s no conspiracy.


  • ghostsniper January 26, 2019, 2:32 PM

    I’m starting to go the other way, but it’s hard.
    Have been dealing with amazon since 1998, yeah, 20 years.
    When it was mostly books. I used to read actual books, more, back then.
    I have books with 3″ of dust and spiderwebs on them.
    I have books so old they have great grandbooks.
    Now I read pixels, mostly. But that too is changing.
    I’m just getting tired of all of it.

    The reviews on amazon are mostly worthless as there are reviewers giving opposite reviews.
    1/2 say “good” and half say “garbage”, so you roll the dice and gets what you get.
    More and more I’m getting less than I bargained for and the send backs are more frequent.
    I hate sending stuff back cause now I’m back at the beginning, but less, cause I have to send it back.
    Even with prime, I’m still backwards a week.

    So I’m starting to gravitate back to regular stores. You know, where real stuff is sold and real people work there. Cept, not really. The shelves are frequently bare. And did I say people work there? I lied. gasp There may be people working there, but they can’t be found. Unless you try to steal something, then you’ll find them.

    I needed casters for some projects I’m working on. About 20 pairs, for 10 projects. And they had to be reasonably priced. 4″ rubber wheels, 20 swivel, 20 stationary, 40 total, bolted. For less than $10 each, or, $400 total, max. None of the stores in a 50 mile radius had all of them. Some had some, some had none, but none had all. (One store had 7 casters. Seven! These kind of casters are used in pairs. What asshole bought 1 caster? This kinda stuff drives me crazy.) So I looked online and found them but the price was on the moon. So, to see if they were real I put them in the cart and started to checkout just to find none of them were in stock, or, it would take 4-6 months to deliver (china?). sigh

    It’s like being caught in a twilight zone between here and there and now and then. Online purchasing is unsatisfactory and so is offline purchasing. What signal am I getting here? snap! Just stop purchasing. Period. Do without, or do something else. Like what people used to do, when they had little money but lots of needs. They figured it out. Some how.

    This year my main goal is to purchase less. Less food, less everything. Some wise person once said something like this, “The things you own are the chains that enslave you.” Do you believe that? I do.

  • Sam L. January 26, 2019, 5:00 PM

    I used to be in poultry husbandry…until they caught me at it.

  • Kevin Baker January 26, 2019, 5:27 PM
  • PA Cat January 26, 2019, 5:53 PM

    Gerard left out the guy (from my home state, sigh) with the emotional support alligator (one assumes Nancy Pelosi was unavailable for the job). Pics at the link:

    The owner acknowledges that “[Alligators] aren’t for everyone,” Henney quipped . . . . “But what can I say? I’m not normal.”

  • John the River January 27, 2019, 5:53 AM

    When I became convinced that Amazon (especially their Marketplace) is the new ‘Thieves Market’.

    From a on-line interaction with Amazon Customer Service. (2017)
    Here’s a copy of the chat transcript you requested:

    Initial Question: The tracking number is bogus, the item has never shipped, the ‘Seller’ does not respond (frankly I think the whole thing is someones idea of a prank) and Amazon makes it very hard to contact them.
    This item was going to be paid for with points, are the points still held or can the points be debited in the future?

    05:24 PM PDT Geeth(Amazon): Hello, my name is Geeth. I’m here to help you today.
    I am sorry that you had to face this issue .
    I’ll try my best to help you regarding this .
    May I know what is the order ID of the item ?
    05:25 PM PDT John …: It isn’t in front of you? It was where I started.
    05:25 PM PDT Geeth: John are you referring to Orbi Home WiFi System. Up to 5000sqft AC3000 Tri-Band WiFi (RBK50) By NETGEAR [WiFi Router & Satellite] ?
    05:25 PM PDT John …: I went back to the product page.
    05:26 PM PDT John …:
    Order #
    05:29 PM PDT John …: still there?
    05:30 PM PDT Geeth: Yes John .
    John I’ve checked the details .
    05:31 PM PDT Geeth: Since the product was out of stock of the seller’s inventory the order was cancelled and refund was issued for it .
    05:31 PM PDT John …l: If the order was cancelled then it would not still be showing as a active order that had shipped.
    05:32 PM PDT John …: That explanation is insulting.
    05:33 PM PDT John ..: You cannot ‘refund’ points. If the order is active then the points can be deducted.
    05:34 PM PDT John …: The order has spent two weeks with a status of ‘shipped’. The tracking number is bogus.
    05:35 PM PDT John …: You are only trying to force me to cancel the order so it is my decision not an error on your part.
    (I disconnected…)

  • Jeff Brokaw January 27, 2019, 6:00 AM

    Re: the unfriend story

    The online world was SO much better before social media ruined it. Pre-2005 or so, it took truly determined and creative people to stake out an online presence in that much more DIY online world. Your connection was based on shared interests or ideas.

    All that changed when social media built a platform that took care of all those DIY details. It had the effect of letting every yahoo with an internet connection into the party.

    The barrier to entry that existed before was a good thing in the sense that it did not encourage the idea that a social connection that was online only, and based on a superficiality like we kinda know each other in real life or graduated high school together, was a positive thing that would enhance your life. Sure, once in a while, that might be true — but the jury is in and the verdict is unanimous, “no it does not”.

  • Nori January 27, 2019, 5:56 PM

    My emotional support chicken was delicious, dipped in Sweet Baby Ray’s Wing Sauce.
    For emotional support alligator, I’d go with drawn butter & lemon juice.

  • Nori January 27, 2019, 5:57 PM

    My emotional support chicken was delicious, dipped in Sweet Baby Ray’s Wing Sauce.
    For emotional support alligator, I’d go with drawn butter & lemon juice.

  • Nori January 27, 2019, 6:00 PM

    Oops.Sorry 4 double post. Overcome with emotion, I guess.

  • Casey Klahn January 27, 2019, 6:08 PM

    My opinion is: Nori for the win!

    What goes with Korean emotional support dog?

  • ghostsniper January 27, 2019, 6:54 PM

    Ate gator twice, once over a spit, and breaded and deep fired. Didn’t care for either. It wasn’t the pond fish flavor but the spongy texture. The more you chew it the bigger it gets, until you spit it out.

    Bull shark is nasty too. Ate it breaded and deep fried and baked. Bold, in your face, unspecified flavor. Could have been a piece of softened fiberglass as far as I could tell. Didn’t swallow that stuff neither.

    Soft shell turtle was spongy like the gator but had a much more pronounced pond water flavor. Spat that nastiness out too. Guess I just wasn’t dronk enuff.

    Set a slab of baked sea bass (grouper) in front of me and run like hell. Forks will be flying and incisors will be gnashing. Then wash the whole mess down with a vat of conc chowder with a side of swamp cabbage and palm hearts, then scour the pipe with a qt mason jar slammed with uncut “apple pie”. dawgeez…..

  • Nori January 28, 2019, 6:25 PM

    What goes with Korean emotional support dog, Casey? Kim chee & a visit from the ASPCA.

    As for that spongy gator,Ghost, jeez, that’s gross. Read somewhere it tasted like “lemony chicken”.
    Uh huh. Like iguana.