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Who’s this jaunty lad?


It’s the new H1N1 swine flu virus all the kids are talking about! The CDC Influenza Lab took some holiday snapshots.

Actually, now that I squint at it, I’m guessing that’s a bunch of H1N1s and a couple of distressed blood cells. Or is the scale wrong for that? There wasn’t anything descriptive by way of caption.

Does it strike you as odd that they’ve gone quiet about this thing? After grossly overplaying the looming plague, the daily sick-roll gets hardly a mention now. Paranoid Me thinks paranoid thoughts of paranoia. Reasonable Me thinks it’s probably because the thing is spreading like a pandemic, but not exactly killing like a plague. Wide but shallow. Bit of a dud, really.

Anyhow, you can find the CDC’s daily reports — if’n you are so inclined — here. Or you can follow them on Twitter, if you’re a Twit.

But, even better, you can sign up for their email alerts. They’ve got a whole bunch of different individual alerts to sign up for. Even better, on the next page, you can sign on for alerts from other government agencies, like FEMA and the FDA.

Sure, I just volunteered to get a buttload of government bureaucracy-spam. But I did it using my silliest email address!

Good weekend, all…!

sock it to me

May 15, 2009 — 6:43 pm
Comments: 19

Never send a pussycat to do a weasel’s job


Stoator, God of Weasels. Nobody ruin Weasel’s fun pointing out it’s probably an otter, ‘K?

Another Kinkadian run in the country today. We stopped in a little village for refreshments in a self-consciously quaint tea shop (this part of the country is lousy with such places: grossly overpriced and fatally twee, but the food is usually excellent. Even I pronounced the fruitcake edible). We found this lil’ feller in the antiques shop next door.

Later, while Uncle B enjoyed a well-deserved nap, the cat hooked a paw under my chair and pulled out a little mouse. Then he got away. Again and again and again. We chased that poor little bastard from the chair to the couch to the bookshelves and back again for an hour before I gave up and woke up The Badger. (I needed someone to lift the couch while I threw a tea-towel over the bugger).

After another half hour of this roundy-round, the cat got bored and wandered away, Uncle B declared himself not an expert on the catching of mice, and I finally managed to slip a flowerpot over the exhausted rodent. Hardly as big as my thumb, he was, and panting hard.

Somewhere in the hedge tonight, a sadder but a wiser mouse is telling a breathless tale about a cat, a badger and a weasel.

God, I’ve died and gone to Toontown.

sock it to me

May 14, 2009 — 7:59 pm
Comments: 17

ZOMG! Now I know where I am…!


We were driving around the countryside from garden center to garden center today, trying to find growing bags or strawberry plants or…some junk (I’m still unclear on the ‘gardening’ concept). One misty, flower-spangled leafy country lane after another. It was all very sparkly. Like the Ice-capades.

We drove through one tiny village and Uncle B said, “I think I counted six thatched rooves just then.” And then it dawned on me: I’m trapped in a Thomas Kinkade painting.

Y’all know this boo-boo, right? You should. He’s one of the most grinding self-promotional hustlers on the planet. Thomas Kinkade, Painter of Light ®. He sells framed bubble-jet prints by mail, in dedicated Thomas Kinkade Signature Gallery franchises and on the Home Shopping Channel for anything from hundreds to ten thousand dollars. For a print. To be fair, the really expensive ones are touched up with a bit of real oil paint by a registered detailologist. Or something.

I don’t hate Kinkade. His mixture of demonstrable technical competence, shit-awful taste, improbable Christian piety and rancid venality is…kind of…fascinating. Doing a Google images search this evening, I discovered he has moments of almost brilliance. And moments of such mindblowing gaudy crassness, it hurt like having my ass-bone broken and reset wrong.

I don’t know why the likes of Hallmark, Disney or the Salvation Army have anything to do with him. Well, I do — he claims to have pushed more than two billion-with-a-b dollars worth of merchandise. But he gives off a disastery vibe, if you ask me.

The FBI investigated him a few years ago for crippling his gallery franchisees with a combination of Jesus and strong-arm tactics. There have been allegations of heckling and groping and what Wikipedia called “his proclivity for ritual territory marking through urination, once relieving himself on a Winnie the Pooh figure at a Disney site while saying ‘This one’s for you, Walt’.”

See? How can you hate this guy?

sock it to me

May 13, 2009 — 7:29 pm
Comments: 20


homealoneUncle B had to go on a business trip today, leaving me on my own in Badger House. For, like, the first time.

Uncle B works from home. Did I mention? So this was my first largely Badger-free day in six months.

There was pizza. And cake. Okay, banana bread — but banana bread really is cake, isn’t it? I don’t know why we call it bread.

There was playing of banjo and feeding of cat on the countertops. Also, I stood on something I shouldn’t’a to reach something I didn’t really need.

Oh, it was all orgy and anarchy up in Badger House today.

But he’s back now, so shhh…

sock it to me

May 12, 2009 — 6:53 pm
Comments: 26

Stupider than tacky, or tackier than stupid?


Did you see this on Drudge this weekend? Remember the thing where Hillary gave the Russian foreign minister a toy button that was supposed to say “reset” and in fact said “overstress”? Apparently, some in Russia aren’t absolutely positive it was an accident.

See, this is why you don’t let amateurs fuck around with this diplomacy stuff: there are some paranoid nutjobs with serious power out there. I read somewhere the State Department was pissed about this one. They’ve got tons of proper Russian speakers on staff (duh), but Hillary’s people don’t take advice. I thought she was smarter than that. I really did.

The wrong word? Stupid. Not writing the word in Cyrillic? Tacky. Actually, scratch that — the very idea of giving a foreign minister a toy reset button is prima facie tackier and stupider than fucking up the execution.

Seriously, can you believe the low-rentiness of these people? I thought the smarty pantses were in charge now. College boys. No more Texas goobers embarrassing us on the world stage.

So, what do heads of state give each other? Well, whatever it is, you can bet your ass it would look good in a museum. Gordon Brown gave Obama an ornamental penholder carved from the timbers of the anti-slavery ship HMS Gannet. Like that.

What did Obama give Brown? Twenty five DVD’s. Oh. So. Tacky.

DVD’s that won’t play in Britain? Stupid. Stupidstupidstupid. Deeeep stupid.

And her Maj? Giving the richest woman in the world an iPod? Stupid. Putting your own speeches on it next to the Great Moments in History? Tacky. Un-fucking-beLIEVABLY tacky. Britney Spears has a better feel for the tasteful and appropriate.

There’s more to sophistication than putting Dijonnaise on your arugula, sport.

sock it to me

May 11, 2009 — 7:43 pm
Comments: 21


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May 10, 2009 — 8:42 am
Comments: 5

Willy, he dead


This is not news — it happened in 2003, apparently — but I did not know it: Keiko, the whale who played Willy in the movie Free Willy, didn’t do all that great on the outside. In fact, he died. Didn’t play nice with the other orcas, pined for human company, and croaked with pneumonia.

I know this because a Danish study came out today saying he was never a good candidate for release. Caught too young, too many years in captivity.

Happy Friday!

sock it to me

May 8, 2009 — 8:03 pm
Comments: 46

It has come to this…


Yep. Anagrams for Stoaty Weasel. Amusing myself while I cook dinner for Uncle Badger, who is working late.

Or, as I like to think of him, Cleared Bung. Lab Crud Gene. Cleaned Grub. Dance Bugler. Cage Blunder. Bag Clue Nerd. Enlarged Cub. Grenade Club. Gnarled Cube. Crab Nude Leg. Bad Creel Gun. Bald Cur Gene. Bean Curd Gel. Gland Be Ecru.

Oh, come on. It’s fun.

sock it to me

May 7, 2009 — 8:34 pm
Comments: 20

Count Chocula, Hannibal Lecter, James Earl Ray: not welcome in Britain


If you aren’t watching the current British government walk in little circles pee its pants, you’re missing a sweet schadenfreude-y treat. Yesterday’s boob move: revealing that 22 people have been banned from entering the UK in the last nine months. Sixteen of them were named.

Why is that retarded? Wellll, for one thing, there was no particular reason to release that list now. In fact, there’s no practical reason to release it at all. What do we look like, border agents? Why tell us?

For another — eh, go read it. I can just hear the Home Secretary shrieking, “for chrissakes — it’s all Pakistanis and Palestinians! Quick everybody! Think up some evil Jews or Christians or something!”

So they rounded out the list with people who — as far as anyone knows — had no plans to visit Britain.

Think about that — a no-fly list that includes people who didn’t intend to fly. And it took them nine months to think of 22 of them? I mean, if you’re talking purely hypothetically and you have the whole fucking world to choose from, couldn’t you come up with A LOT more than 22 dangerous evil assholes?

And would Michael Savage make your list? Dude. Michael Savage. He’s a rude, mouthy jerk, but come on. He was just sitting in his bathrobe yesterday morning, innocently being his own rude, mouthy jerk self, and bam — some government officially lumps him in with the father rapers and mother stabbers, forbidden by name to travel somewhere he didn’t want to go.

Sue. Sue like the wind!

The Home Office was obviously so desperate to include Righties to break up the monotony of Islamic splodey dopes, they included a pair of Russian skinhead murderers who won’t be out of Russian prison for ten years. A no-fly list that includes people who couldn’t fly if they wanted to and would automatically be rejected as ex-felons in the distant, unlikely possibility that they ever can.

Really, at this point, aren’t you simply making a hypothetical list of the general kinds of things that piss you off?

sock it to me

May 6, 2009 — 7:46 pm
Comments: 18







It’s lemonade. With a little beer in.

So little beer, they sell it alongside the Pepsi and Orangina and other kiddie pop in the cafe cooler.

Yes, I know how it SOUNDS. But I really like this stuff.




Bite me.







sock it to me

May 5, 2009 — 6:17 pm
Comments: 32