web analytics

Happy Alevromoutzouromata!


Yup! Yesterday was Alevromoutzouromata already! We missed it. Although, you know, once you get to Underpants Day, you know Alevromoutzouromata can’t be far behind.

Alevromoutzouromata is Greek for “people throw flour at each other.” Kidding? Der Spiegel says nein. People of the little village of Galaxidi in Greece celebrate the end of Carnival and the beginning of Greek Orthodox Lent by dancing and throwing 3,000 pounds of colorfully dyed flour at each other. The day is known, brain-hurtingly, as Clean Monday. (Click for pictures).

It all got started, quoth the Tourist Bureau, at the beginning of the 19th Century, when the Ottoman occupiers (read: killjoy Muslims) forbade the celebration of Christian holidays. In protest, the men of Galaxni painted their faces with ash and danced solemnly in the village square on the Monday before Lent. And then when the Muzzies were gone, it was all, like, ‘FOOD FIGHT!’
Weird? Pff! Not even the weirdest Clean Monday celebration on the Island of Greece. That would have to be the Penis Festival of Tyrnavos. There, once a year, you may dress up like a winkie and eat things that look like peens, drink strong beverages from tallywhacker-shaped cups through straws shaped like weiners, stir the spinach soup with unthinkable utensils and sing songs about boners.

I knew about this one. One of my roommates in art school was Greek — a city girl from Athens. She described how her family drove across the island one year on Clean Monday and unwittingly drove into the middle of Peckerfest. In a convertible.

Traumatized for life, poor girl. “Huge penises! They were…all around the car. Pressing against us…dancing…singing…waving things. Oh, it was horrible!”

Despite the timing, this is an explicitly Dionysian festival — another big fat Olde Worlde religion mash-up. Let us hope Galaxidi and Tyrnavos never get together for this one.

August 19, 2008 — 12:45 pm
Comments: 28

Hello? Is this my blog?


You get the feeling everybody in the blogosphere is just phoning it in lately? Me, too. I mean me, I get that feeling, but also me, I’m phoning it in.

Maybe it’s the Summertime Blues. Maybe it’s this godawful presidential election. Maybe it’s the one-fifth of my skin that’s covered with crusty, weeping pustules that itch like a fothermucker.

Oh! And they gave me some work today. That I have to do! Can you believe?

Anyhow, please enjoy this black and white photograph of a phone, which I nicked off the internet and added a reflection and the words “ring, ring” to with Photoshop.

August 18, 2008 — 5:53 pm
Comments: 28


leaves of three

Even thought what I touched didn’t look like poison ivy to me, I’ve been piddling around a Google images search and these are classic ivy lesions. Except I got off lightly — man there are some disturbing pictures out there. Counting blessings…

August 16, 2008 — 1:13 pm
Comments: 33

Say, I could really go for a big weepy dose of poison ivy!

poison ivy

I don’t think it is poison ivy, actually. I was well aware of the clump of undergrowth I was sticking my hand in and it wasn’t ‘leaves of three’ or anything else I recognized. But you can react this way to many of Mother Nature’s beloved greenbabies, which is one more reason Gaia can kiss my ass.

The primary site is messy and scary, but it’s the secondary sites that are getting me down; any place this naughty forearm can sneak off to in the night — my neck, my chin, my pantyline, my left armpit — I’ve got a patch of misery. Milder than the mama patch, but MUCH itchier.

We had a transformer blow this morning, which tripped the fire alarm at work. I got to stand outside for forty five minutes next to my boss’s boss’s boss and several hundred of my choice cow-orkers, while I squirmed and jived and thought, “don’t scratch your belly…don’t scratch your belly…don’t scratch your belly…”

Eventually, topical ointments weren’t cutting it; I’m having temporary itchy patches pop up in places my naughty spot hasn’t gone NEAR. Free-floating histamines, I guess. So I bought some Benadryl on the way home — or, as I like to think of it, Coma in a Caplet. Diphenhydramine knocks me flat. They gave it to me for hives when I was a kid, back when it was prescription only, and it’s like weasel narcolepsy.

Took one half an hour ago; so goodbye, cruel world!

Hey, y’all have just read a 253-word essay by a weasel describing a rash. Isn’t the internet wonderful? Have a great weekend!

August 15, 2008 — 4:53 pm
Comments: 32

What else you going to plant in a weasel’s garden?


digging up buns

You must click this link for the big sloppy color version, with extra ninja toenail action. Yeah, up yours, Cute Overload!

There was a mound of clean, loose earth left over after the mighty Shit Processing Factory was installed, and Mummy Runnybabbit apparently snuggled right down into it and laid bunny eggs.

Because Uncle B is terribly old and terribly rich, he sometimes hires a couple of spry young lads to help him in the garding. They dug up these buns like ‘taters, they did. Shrieking and screaming (the buns, I mean). No sign of mama. Longtime readers may recall that rabbit’s milk is very nutritious and baby buns only need to nurse once a day. But I think these guys are old enough to be weaned.

I instructed Uncle B not to tell me what they did with them, because I assumed it was something horrible and manly. Took them by their back legs and cracked them like whips, perhaps. Bit they little heads off while singing Viking war ballads.

But no…Squishy McSlopbucket and his merry pirate crew took them into the next field over and left them in the embankment. Great. They’re going to be right back in our garding in no time. MAKING MORE BUNS.

Some day soon, Uncle B and I are going to have to have that little talk about the birds and the bees and the runnybabbits.

hot, cross buns

August 14, 2008 — 11:38 am
Comments: 49

Clown wars


“When she was arrested in Afghanistan last month, Aafia Siddique allegedly had in her possession maps of New York, a list of potential targets that included the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, the subway system and the animal disease center on Plum Island, detailed chemical, biological and radiological weapon information that has been seen only in a handful of terrorist cases, as well as a thumb drive packed with emails, ABC News has learned.”

Seriously? She was carrying all that around in her purse? Was the thumb drive labeled “Shhhh…Super Secret al Qaeda Plan to Take Over the World”? Was she wearing a little black mask and pants and a striped shirt with “TERRORIST” written on it? Has any nation ever faced an enemy more cartoonishly slap-dash, underripe and just plain bug-fuck crazy?

Let’s take just one datum and think it through a little. The Statue of Liberty has symbolic importance to Americans, so I’ll give them that. But it’s on an island and access is controlled by the Parks Service. A search is involved, so you couldn’t carry much in the way of explosives. Not sure what explosives would do, anyway; the statue itself is a thin skin of copper stretched over a steel framework. Hard to damage. Maybe you could fly a plane into it (I accidentally did that all the time with Microsoft Flight Simulator). Might or might not work. Plus, small body count. In sum, not a very good target. So why even put it on a list, let alone walk around with it?

These fuckers are always being picked up with “maps of the subway system” or “lists of targets” — stuff that’s easily Googlable, perfectly innocent in isolation and make NO sense to be carrying around, unless the whole purpose is to buy yourself a world of hurt and look menacing in a headline. Honestly, when you’re just blue-skying your evil plans, it’s really, really not a good idea to write it all down and carry it on your person.

An earlier ABC News article quoted the Afghanistan National Police as saying she was carrying materials from the “Anarchist’s Arsenal” — bet you anything that’s our old friend the Anarchist’s Cookbook, helping angry Americans blow themselves up since 1971. How terrorized am I supposed to be by a pack of bozos getting their doomsday weapons out of a book you can buy on Amazon for twenty bucks? I think MIT ripped this chick off.

more clown

Staunch righty that I am, it would cross my mind that the government is making all this stupid shit up, until I remember how much of it there is. Like, remember this guy? Mohammed Taheri-Azar, former University of North Carolina student. Pleaded guilty yesterday to nine counts of attempted murder. Avenged Muslim deaths around the world by driving his SUV into a crowd of UNC students. Really, Mo? That’s your evil plan?

You know, you can give ’em all the education you want, but someday they’ll break loose and fly off down the road waving their arms and going “ULULULULULULULU!”

It’s like we’re fighting the Global War against Angry Pinwheeling Retards.

August 13, 2008 — 9:57 am
Comments: 21

ZOMG I has fake hepatitis B!

I has fake hepatitis B!

Well, I guess my career as a blood donor is over, thirty years and I-forget-how-many-gallons later. Now I’ve got to come up with some other mildly shitty karma-balancing exercise to replace it. Anybody got an old lady who needs to cross the street? A lot?

And, yes. I scribbled out my unit number, just in case somebody recognized it from the label on my bag of blood. Okay?

August 12, 2008 — 2:10 pm
Comments: 34

Happy Victory Over Japan Day, y’all!

VJ Day

Okay, it’s not literally VJ Day. That would either be August 15-ish, when Japan actually surrendered in dubya-dubya-eye-eye, or September 2, when they filled out the paperwork. But as Rhode Island is the last state to observe the holiday, we figure we can do it any time we like. So we do it on the second Monday in August.

When I was in the Boston office, it used to piss me off that half my colleagues got the day off and I didn’t. But now I’m in the Providence office, I’m like “ha ha! Take that, you smelly Boston office losers!”

I think we chickened out and changed the name to Victory Day, though. Or We Love Our Little Yellow Friends Across the Sea Day. Or maybe it’s The Unions Never Give Up a Paid Holiday Day.

What do I care? Day off! 🙂

It’s raining. 🙁

August 11, 2008 — 8:56 am
Comments: 28

How to anesthetize your weasel

sleeping weasel

First, tape your weasel securely to a cutting board. No, no idea. It just turned up on an images search of “dead weasel.” Since this adorable little squeaker apparently isn’t dead (who anesthetizes a dead weasel? Nobody, that’s who) I figured, “better still!”

Sorry I buggered the blog for a while today. WordPress software has been pissing and moaning at me to upgrade for weeks, since the version I had ‘ad an ‘ole in it, is the technical term. But I had just upgraded it to the version I had — during the course of which I severely buggered the blog — and I wasn’t in a hurry to repeat the experience.

“I know!” I thought this morning, “I’ll use that automatic upgrade plugin thingamajig that all the kids are raving about!” And there we go, buggered.

After much faffing and sweating, turns out I simply can’t log in to WordPress 2.6 as admin using the Opera browser. That bums me in a mild to moderately severe way, but at least there’s a workaround. And I figured it out all by myself, so maybe I’ll get a gold star or an M&M or they’ll name the bug after me or something.

Okay, let’s see if this works. Behold, I appear before you in Internet Explorer! It smells like Bill Gates in here. And ass. Yes, there is a subtle qualitative difference.

August 10, 2008 — 12:50 pm
Comments: 13

Morning bucket o’ weasels = molto ossim


I had a dental cleaning this morning, so I blew off work for the rest of the day. I dropped by Petco for some catfood on the way back and got there just as the store was opening. The highlight of any trip to Petco, of course, is gawping at the animals– especially the big box of ferrets at the front of the store — so I was grievously bummed to see the ferret cage empty. An employee was rushing around filling food bowls and dumping various squeaking gobs of fur into cages and I said, “no ferrets?” and she said, “oh, they’re over there in that big red bucket.”

And they were!

Three pointy white faces stared up at me out of the bucket. It was a big red bucket of weasels! They were extremely excited to see me, and I was extremely excited to see them. Much to my surprise, nobody cared if I played them and she left the lid off the cage when it was all set up and the bucket was up-ended into it. The ferrets humped all around the cage and chewed on my sleeves and tried to climb me like a tree and, one by one, did the weasel dance for me. Wonderful way to start a long weekend.

Alas, I didn’t have a camera with me. But while I was Googling suitably representative ferret pics, I found this story: one of our last two colonies of wild black footed ferrets has lost a third of its members. To the plague. Yes, that one. THE plague. The big mama-jama.

I knew that plague was endemic in the prairie dog population, and I knew that prairie dogs were ferret food, but I never put two and two together. My favorite disease and my favorite animal, tragically juxtaposed. Apparently, ferrets have zero resistance to plague. They up and die, every time.

People do okay with it now. Every once in a while, some kid out West skins a rabbit he found dead and gets himself a dose of yersinia pestis for it, but antibiotics knock it right down. Whether that’s really the same disease that knocked out a third of the population of Europe is not entirely certain.

Huzzah! My weekend has begun! In with a weasel, out with a…well, we’ll find out.

August 8, 2008 — 10:54 am
Comments: 32