Do You Feel Lucky?

(and feel free to comment! My older posts are certainly no less relevant to the burning concerns of the day.)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Cult or No Cult?

The distinction between a religion and a cult is plain enough:

A religion has at least a creed which, whatever its defects, can be scrutinized. A religion displays its core tenets of belief to the world, where they may or may not be judged as ridiculous.

A cult promises deep revelations, but hides any defects from scrutiny. A cult divulges its core tenets of belief only to initiates who have been properly prepared to receive them. Who have been prepared to receive them uncritically.

There can of course be cults within religions! For example, there are those who claim that deep within this or that established church lurks some ultra-secret cabal secretly espousing beliefs contrary to that church's creed. Such a cabal, being in opposition to the plain creed of the church in question, can hardly be said to be part of the church. Assuming it did indeed exist, it would be a cult plain and simple - most likely nestling within the greater organization as a means to power or influence for its own separate and distinct aims.

There exists within humanity a powerful fascination with "hidden knowledge" - a fascination which pathetically enough, can exert a strong enough pull to keep deep initiates from defecting - even once they gain discernment to see they've been fooled. In the absence of true knowledge, the appearance of knowing can be enough. Many a mystic is satisfied if they can make smugness pass as enlightenment, to the uninitiated.

Cults have been with us from the beginning. It is likely that their seductive methods will always be used by the unscrupulous to gull the gullible.

Of course, some say the same about religions. But religion at least will stand up and say what it believes. It's true that some cultish tendencies can exist even in well-established religions, but speaking generally, the most central, most important truths are left hanging right out there, like a big matzoh ball for all the world to see.

And that's the difference. To which I for one say "amen," and "viva la"!

Open Dream Journal #38: If It's Only A Dream, Are They Still Real?

This is one from a while ago. I dreamt that I was a professional photographer, and that I was taking pictures of Renee Zewelleger for a glossy photo spread in Vanity Fair. She kept insisting that she take her top off to display her large, natural breasts. It didn't occur to me to say to myself, "Renee Zewegeller doesn't have large breasts!" Because, they looked so real! And she seemed real proud of them too. She dropped more than one reference to them specifying the whole "large, natural" aspect. So I didn't just assume she got 'em done, or anything, because why is Renee Zegellewer going to lie to me? I'm just a top-rated well-sought-after world-class photographer.

I think it was in the back of my mind that she was trying to get back at Kenny somehow - by showing them off. Then the magazine came out, and the photo spread was an absolute triumph. I had done a fantastic job! And Renee Zellegewer was so sweet and warm and normal-seeming, which came across in the accompanying interview as well. A real solid citizen.

In actual real reality, I did see her once, at a breakfast place. In L.A. of all places! In she walks, Renee Zelweggler! Very perky and casual, like she's just, you know, any ordinary, casual breakfaster! Except more wholesome than some, and perkier than most. She was dressed athletically and had a very red face, such that I assumed she had been running or exercising, or had been perhaps a bit too much in the sun, or the recipient of a glycolic peel.

But thinking about it now...maybe it was because she'd had the same dream - and recognized me?

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Changing Definition of Feminism

The start of the wikipedia entry on Feminism as it appeared on Mar 24, 2009 06:13:12 GMT:

Feminism is the belief that women should have equal political, social, sexual, intellectual and economic rights to men. It involves various movements, theories, and philosophies, all concerned with issues of gender difference, that advocate equality for women and that campaign for women's rights and interests.

The start of the wikipedia entry on Feminism as it appears today:
Feminism is the name given to any system of thinking that recognizes the dominant ideology as oppressive to women and works to affect change. It involves various movements, theories, and philosophies, all concerned with issues of gender difference, that advocate equality for women and that campaign for women's rights and interests.

I kind of like both of these. The second is more rah-rah and exciting-struggle about it. The first is more core value about it: what exactly we believe, as feminists.

But ultimately, I'm not sure the whole "The Man is against us" angle - exciting and overall accurate as it may be, but it's also a bit self-defeating in the long term. Must a feminist recognize the dominant ideology as oppressive to women? Suppose progress is made? Are we then no longer able to be feminists? According to the first definition - sure, we can. Of course! But according to the second definition, well, no. We couldn't be feminists anymore, not if the dominant ideology could no longer be recognized as oppressive to women.

In other words: we can only be feminists as long as we are on the losing end of the struggle. That's neither helpful nor hopeful. Let's define the struggle in terms of our goals - what we want to achieve! Not in terms of our failure to achieve it.

Of course, this distinction isn't worth going into schismatics over! We've got a ways to go, fellow feminists, before we have to worry about that.

In the meantime, please feel free to follow my bold lead. But don't expect me to hold the door for ya!

Lately I've Been Drinking WAY TOO MUCH

...LEMONADE, that is! I bet you thought I meant booze.

No, lemonade is the tart siren of squeezed citrus and simple syrup that sings to me so sweetly these days! For some reason lately it seems I can't get too much of it. And if I can't get much, then I can't get get enough! And if I can't get enough, then fuck! I want MORE!

And I get more - in gallons by the gallon! Pop the lid! Hoist the jug in both hands - tip it back, OH yeah! My oh my, my lemonade! Yum! SWEET! Nmmmnmmm, TART! Ahhhhh! WET and REFRESHING! But always brrrrrr - COLD!

How I like it!

I got to have it - whooo-eee! That's good. I got to try it - brand after brand! How's that one, any good! Yeah, I had that - what about that one - I don't know! Gotta try it!

I guzzle that sweet-ass nectar like a bum hungry for his beloved booze! Then I smack my kisser loudly and repeatedly, and run my big tongue all around the hairy rim of my lips. Because THIS is the stuff! Oh, man - lemonade!

Lemonade is one of the most foremost and most deeply satisfying of all the sacred mysteries. It represents the font of a primordial need, one that goes way back beyond antiquity. Even the garden, way back before lemonade was even invented - but Adam and Eve chugged and glugged it by the hornful as they lounged and frolicked! They didn't understand it - how could they? Lemonade hadn't even been invented yet. As I've said already. But who can doubt that lemonade was served nonetheless? Need I remind you, it was paradise. Of course they had lemonade.

I just tried a new brand that I picked up at the store - it sucked! A little too sweet. But I am nonetheless still plenty high on my recent lemonade kick!

Truth to tell, I've been drinking a little too much of the booze, too. Lately.

Home, Sweet

So glad. Today my home computer is back up, plugged in and service connected in my sweet little place I now have. Nice!

I need to get some essentials. I don't even have a can opener yet. I don't have furniture.

But essentials can wait. I've been shopping for the necessities.

I got a quiche pan, though I have no eggs.

I got two stretched canvasses, though I have no paint, brush, easel or palette.

I got olive oil, vinegar, some spices and herbs. Some garlic, an onion. Some tomatoes, celery, some tuna fish.

Tonight I guess I'm having salad!

Who Dares Question What I Say Is The Will Of God?

What do you know about it! What do you know about the will of God?

Frankly, you strike me as one of those people who is always vacillating about it, saying, "well, I don't necessarily know if there really is some big planned-out plan..." You try to live your life a certain way, maybe, but you've never been all that confident about your place in God's big scheme. You have a general idea of what God would like to get out of you, but as far as the specifics of God's will - you can only offer a helpless shrug!

Well then all I can say to you is How Dare You? How Dare You Question what I Say is The Will Of God? Where do you get off questioning someone who KNOWS?

You've never been that certain in yourself, maybe. You've never felt the certainty of living as the living instrument of God's will! Well I have. I have utmost certainty in the living decrees of God's will which express themselves to me, indeed, through me - through my every action and pronouncement! And you, you who some days hardly even feel bone-certain sure that there IS a God - you would dare question me on what I can quite confidently tell you is God's Will?

Man! You've got some real brass, pal. That’s all I can say. I'd watch myself as I step gingerly to the pearly gates if I was you. One of my buddies is working the door.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Valid Defense of Film Director Michel Gondry

I am so SICK of PEOPLE knocking film director Michel Gondry as little more than a surrealist hack with a knack for adapting the perverse and cracked prismatic visions that pour forth from Charlie Kaufman's magic pen, or used to at any rate. People lay that pat analysis out there like that's all there is to say, all the fucking time, and nobody ever calls them on it! It's become like, the perceived or received or accepted wisdom on the guy and his career, and what he amounts to. Well I, for one, DIS-A-FUCKIN'-GREE!

Gondry is a visual inventivist easily on a par with a LeBrilliet or a Paubert. He spins your eyes inside the camera like a shit-hot DJ in the club spins your ears inside the beats! beats! beats! In films like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, or Being John Malkovitch*, Gondry's masterful manhandling of the mise-en-scène manages to be never both confusing and intrusive as it carries the viewer along the sliding puzzle-path of the plot, delighting eye and mind alike with grace notes and visual counterpoints that perfectly serve the story.

Yet ironically, Gondry's seamless yet effortlessly audacious visualizations of the story twists, expectation flips, character tumbles and other myriad plot gymnastics wrought by Kaufman's limber, contortionist brain have brought Gondry not praise, but relegation to second-banana status. People seem to think his real gift consists in adapting Kaufman and not much else.

But how fair is that? How come everybody says "well what's he done besides his best work with Kaufman," but nobody asks what Kaufman has done apart from his best work with Gondry? I mean, what has he done? A couple self-indulgent duds and an episode of "Cheers"!

It was a pretty cool episode, I admit. You saw the one where Carla and Rebecca each dream that they've awoken inside each others' psyches, resulting in one crazy day up until the part where it's revealed that Woody was the puppeteer pulling the strings behind the whole thing, using some special voodoo hick mickeys that he slipped them both in the mistaken belief that it would cure them of their respective neuroses? A solid episode of a now-classic sitcom, and one which - if you squint - pretty strikingly prefigures some of the best of that then-young writer's future brilliance.

Okay okay, I admit that a few of the supporting facts in this valid defense of film director Michel Gondry may have been made up, but if postmodern scholarship has taught us nothing, it's that all facts have pretty much been made up.

Also, by no means should anyone construe any of this as a knock on Charlie Kaufman's talents. Charlie is a real leading light in an industry populated for the most part with jaded pros churning out derivative hackwork. It's true that I have beef with him going way back on a separate matter, but it's beef marinated in admiration, seasoned with appreciation, and well-braised in a tart, complex sauce of deep respect, and perhaps leeks.

Friday, March 27, 2009

DEATH!! Death To Those Who Oppose Me!

I mean, sure, death to everybody else too eventually.

I take the long view on these things.

Render Unto Caesar

As an avid historian, I just love pointing shit out to people, and here's a perfect example. Everybody talks about Caesar as if he reigned wisely and well for like a bajillion years, but guess what? History tells another tale: Caesar took the title "dictator for life" in February of 44 BC. Then, in March of that same year, he was assassinated by a group of disgruntled republicans, who hated to see too much power concentrated into the hands of one man.

That's right. Caesar was killed by republicans. You'll notice, this is something that you never hear them crowing about! No, they'd like to hush that one up a little if they could - they'd love to wash that disgraceful little page right out of the history book!

But sorry! Some blood stains stick, no matter how hard you scrub.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

On-Time Concert Reviews #3: AC/DC on Black Ice

Oracle Arena, Oakland CA, December 2nd 2008

AC/DC. Black Ice tour. Great show! And I would know: I've seen these guys I don't know how many times since 1988. Generally twice on each tour, but once thrice. It's a great show if you can even STAND it. Which, I understand...some can't.

I guess I should put my review in context, so you can consider the source and salt to taste based on how big or little a fan you personally are. As compared to me.

Well, I would say AC/DC is probably not as good as Beethoven. But they put Strauss and Brahms to SHAME. Seriously. In fact, I would say that AC/DC compares favorably to Joyce, Fitzgerald and even Hemingway.

Hemingway was overrated as a novelist. Great short story writer, though.

I would put AC/DC in about the same class as a Goya or a Cezanne. Same basic ballpark.

So there's context. Now for the show itself!

Well, what can I say? The show was very good, very fun. There were one or two rough patches - they totally screwed up the tempo on "Thunderstruck"! It was all over the place for a while, 'til suddenly it slam-clicked into place at the third-of-the-way mark, and all's aright from there on. Still, very unusual for them! It's a tricky song, I suppose, but they NAIL it every other time...! That sort of thing does happen, I guess. It was more a moment of comedy for me than anything else. I was giggling like a loon, looking around at people having just a little more difficulty than usual pumping their fists in unison. And the same time, I feel like I was the only one who really seemed to notice anything was off.

Anyway. VERY minor blip, in the big scheme! They were great. They are always great - they always put on such a fun show. With that time tested recipe that they follow so uncompromisingly, and those same classic ingredients in the mix (ESPECIALLY now that Phil Rudd's back! No offense to Simon Wright or to the bald guy - I loved that bald guy! He ruled!), you can hardly go wrong with an AC/DC show.

Angus was his usual self, a fret-searing demon, tearing around like an epileptic marathoner on a sprint binge as always! Cliff and Malcolm anchored the rhythm and swing with bass and six-string riffage respectively, and they sounded *tight* on those mean 'n' loud harmony refrains. Phil glad he came back after that long absence. He's the missing ingredient. Not just for this band - for every other band on earth that lacks Phil Rudd on drums, he is in some way the missing ingredient. Obviously a select number of bands do attempt to compensate for this lack, with whatever drummers of their own, with varying degrees of success.

Brian Johnson is the MAN. Lord, I loved Bon Scott. And what a character he was, and what a great band Bon-era AC/DC was! And Bon's lyrics - DROLL to DROOL for, SON. But Brian is tha man. Brian-era AC/DC is the band I think of when I think "greatest rock band ever." Bon Scott era AC/DC...they were on the way there, and I wish we'd had a chance to see in some alternate universe what that next album would've sounded like...God bless you, Bon. Requiescat in pace.

But I was talking about the SHOW! Yes, we all know Brian's voice isn't the unearthly god-of-wrath on-key-scream of apocalyptic good-naturedness it used to be (witness Back In Black, For Those About To Rock We Salute You, and Flick of the Switch). We know that since he blew out his vocal chords at the Donington gig on the Flick of the Switch tour, he's struggled to get back to those heights. And he's not there. No one has ever been there, except him - and it seems there's some things you can't quite come back from.

But you know what? Who cares! So he's not quite the BJ of the first 3 albums - so what? He sounds great. Frankly he's sounded better every tour since '88, and even if it's a smidgeon diminished from its Olympian, nay, Valhallian peak, his voice is still the perfect instrument to crank up and conduct this band's mix of polished chrome tunesmithery and machine-tooled steam-engine pounding power. He's a seasoned performer, his pipes are in full effect, he's got a lot of power, and he knows how to use it - he's oiled and sanded and varnished that voice of his into a great, gravelly signature howling growl that makes you believe the blues could have been invented in Newcastle.

And put all together, the sum of these five men is something greater than human. They form a single superorganism that not only eats and breathes rock and roll, it also exhales and excretes rock and roll as a waste product. And the sheer energy they put If science got the idea to study these guys, I bet the energy crisis could be managed just by harnessing a small fraction, a mere tithe of that raw power.

On the night, the band were in top form (a few slips aside, as I said). The new songs sounded great, and had people on their feet just as much as the endless barrage of classics did - and come to classics, the song selection was CHOICE. A nigh-flawless set list*. The props were tasteful. The light show was understated as always - what more do you need, but a spotlight on Angus Young?

That's a joke about the props. Some of them were most assuredly not tasteful. But it's all part of their adorable tongue-in-cheek shtick!

*re "nigh-flawless": I've got to tell you, though. I'm really sick of "The Jack." They need to either drop it from the set list for awhile, or bring back the original far-cleverer (and really, far naughtier!) album lyrics.

All in all, no serious complaints. Great gig! Great show. In terms of AC/DC gigs, it's solidly in my top 3. And one of the ones ahead of it is more up that high for sentimental reasons and circumstances surrounding...! So top 3, top 2 maybe.

Reading this post over, now I'm wondering whether it was really necessary for me to put all those comparisons at the front to let people know where I'm coming from.

Monday, March 23, 2009

In My Absence Pt.1: Enjoy Random Posts!

So I'm going to be scarce this week, though I've loaded a post or two to "auto-post" in my absence, but in any case, I have an announcement to make:

Here is the announcement. Please make use of the new "Feeling Lucky?" gadget I've added to the upper-top region of the starboard sidebar! Simply click on the words "Random Post (But Aren't They All)", and you will be transported at random to a mathematically-determined post of mine!

That was the announcement.

More than most blogs, my blog lends itself to this sort of discursive perusal. I hardly ever post about reality, so as a consequence, my blog posts rarely if ever come across as "dated"! Almost all of them are as fresh today as you were the day you were born. And just as sassy.

So go random! A new and easy way to enjoy the heady prose stylings of America's #1 Undiscovered Songwriter. Which, arguably, prose stylings may not be one's true forte when one considers oneself first and foremost a songwriter. And I'm the first to admit that I bear that trend out, somewhat! So, keep that in mind when you're cutting me some slack.

EDIT: Also, while perusing, feel free to comment on any post, no matter how old! The overall timelessness of the topics renders any and all on-topic conversation more-or-less timely! I'll add the comments in when I get back.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Hey! Reasonable Rock Shows!

Just when I was bemoaning the cost of shows these days, I was walking downtown this morning and I saw a number of good-looking shows postered up for the coming weeks. Some were acts I know and respect but would not normally be interested in ponying up 40-110 bucks a ticket to see. Others acts I've gone to see before, but might not have been too keen on shelling out for again at the prevailing price. Others are people I'd definitely love to see, NEED to see! - but can I afford to spend money on frivolities in this economy?

But heck, though! At these prices, we can ALL afford to be rock fans!:

Vetiver with Richard Swift at The Crepe Place
Apr 7, 2009 at 7:30PM

I've seen Vetiver before. I was impressed with their musicianship and bored as shit with what they did with it - but for 10 bucks?! Hell! I'd give 'em another chance! Sure. If only to hear them tear into the stomping drone of the song of theirs that I legitimately love: "You May Be Blue." That song is a grower and a growler.

Of The Jayhawks: Gary Louris & Mark Olson plus Teddy Thompson at The Crepe Place
Apr 10, 2009 at 7:30PM

OK. "Of The Jayhawks" I could care more or less about, but TEDDY THOMPSON???!!! I am so there. "Everybody Move It" from Separate Ways was the #1 hot summertime jam of my own personal 2006, and he's only had more albums since! Go Teddy - it's your birthday - not a holiday - but kick it anyway -

OK Go. at the Catalyst.
Tues, Mar 24th, 2009 doors at 7PM

OK Go? Yes: OK Go! These guys are a national act! Fourteen bucks, that's more value per your hard-earned dollar. And just to be clear, it's definitely OK Go on the poster. No ambiguity about it. Not "OKGO", not "OK GO". Capital "OK", proper-case "Go." So it's good to have that settled. I saw these guys at the Bill Graham in Frisco, and they did a good job despite everyone having a bad cold (at least, according to Snow Patrol's adorable frontman Gary Lightbody). I'd like to see 'em tear it up in their inimitable style at the classic downtown Santa Cruz showcase venue the Catalyst. Why not?

Good to see some top-ass acts getting out to give the fans a chance to take a gamble on 'em, at prices that make it a reasonable risk to do so!

Friday, March 20, 2009

They Don't Pay Me For This #1: McDonald's

For many health-conscious Americans, Canadians, and discriminating food consumers worldwide, McDonald's is in many ways the cornerstone of the Food Pyramid. Quality ground meats, pert buns, lean fish and chicken items, sauces and dips of varying zestiness and tanginess, wholesome natural-grown potatoes fry-cut and flash-frozen at their peak of freshness so when cooked, they come out of the boiling oil as light, crisp, and delicious as the day you were born! These and so many other menu items tease our senses and tempt our taste buds with the promise of how good it can be to eat right & easy, right here at your neighborhood McDonalds.

McDonalds. Eat Right Here.™

This statement by we here at Consider Your Ass Kicked! does not necessarily represent the views of the McDonalds Corporation.

Spring: A Time of New Beginnings

Fuck Spring! Where was Spring when I had to walk two miles in the freezing rain, drunk off my ass, carrying all my earthly belongings in the crook of my left arm? Where was Spring when those two guys jumped me in broad daylight, and the sidewalk ended up littered with blood-soaked teeth? Where was Spring when my right front tire blew out twice in the space of ten minutes on Highway 17 (I changed that first one FAST!)? Where was Spring when the Westfold fell?

Well, whatever. What's past is past. I'll tell you where Spring is now.

It's HERE.

Let's get it!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Go Find Me a Jury of My Peers

Crimes that can only be understood by trained professional jurors do not deserve to result in convictions.

I consider myself a patriot, but if we drop the jury system, then this country really deserves to die. Experiment over. That will represent the death of the last vestige of a country "by the people for the people." We'll be a country by some people, who decide for us all which people matter, and which people don't.

I mean, we're already there in some ways. People are clamoring for that: "Take my individual rights away I don't want them! The greater good is more important!" They don't say it in those words, but that's the net effect. But the problem with the greater good is, no matter who you are: it ain't you. The greater good is defined by those who have - by us - been given the power to determine it - and they define it how they please for their own purpose and benefit.

The fact that our justice system overseers know they can't make something fly unless they can convince 12 ordinary folks that it's right is the single greatest bar we have against the tyranny of the elite.

What tickles me is that all the self-styled well-meaning, principled elitists all like to think that if a trained elite decided everything of importance, it would all be decided in their favor. Hell-no.

Come the revolution, the well-meaning and principled elitists will be the first up against the wall.


I like life. It's so lifelike.

God or No God?: A Theist's Perspective.

With all the controversy on whether God exists, maybe it's time to hear a viewpoint from someone who believes in God. Maybe it's time for a theist to weigh in.

But maybe not in the way you might think.

Let me put it this way: if God exists, or if God doesn't exist, that's God's call. I think it's safe to say that if God wants to exist, God can do it. EASY. God has infinite power. The amount of power expended just merely to exist wouldn't even tax God.

But here's the other thing:

To all you so-called "believists" out there:

If God walks up to you and tells you that non-existence is just how God rolls - well what are you going to say? What are you going to say to that? Are you going to say "no, God!" "You can't non-exist, God!" "You've got to exist, God!"?

Well good luck with that. Because if God doesn't want to exist, well buddy, you may as well be talking to yourself. Under that scenario.

I Killed a Man

Really I more killed my idea of him. But he felt it, though!

His eyes got that whole "Et tu Bruté" look.

Sorry, bud. We all got it coming.

God Spoke

God spoke his ass off when he created me. God said

"Hey." "Let there be this guy...!"

And there was.

And then God was like

"Uh oh." "I'm not so sure I did such a good thing here." "What's this guy going to do? What's his next move going to be...?"

And God...

...together with the rest of the world...


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

An-Other-Than-Perfect Thought, Take 2

There are far better virtues than perfection.

An Other-Than-Perfect Thought

There are better virtues than perfection.

The Evolution of the Eye

Somebody once told me at a party that the eye - the eye itself, the organ of sight - is proof that evolution didn't happen. The idea was that something so complex could never have evolved by degrees, because evolution requires that an adaptation have a direct survival benefit, and an eye that was only half-evolved would have none. I believe the tag-line to the argument was "of what use is half an eye?"

I pretty much disparaged that one right at the source, but then I ended up coming across the same argument again years later. Imagine my dismay to find that people in the wide world at large are looking at this argument as if it were something serious! I had assumed at the time that this person had just come up with it himself right then, off the top of his head - something that might sound good for maybe a second or two, until the butt-ass obvious implications jump out at you from all sides.

Sheesh. Why must it always be me who debunks these things?

OK, I'll do it! If you are one of these folks who subscribes to the "what good is half an eye?" argument, please gather round, and allow me to lay it out for you. Sit back, and I will unfurl for you my tale of wonder:


...It is the Dawn of Time...

You are a tiny one-celled dealy floating in a primordial ocean. The light flows right through you - you can sense it directly. Your cellular membrane, your protoplasm are no barrier to it. Sometimes you try to rise towards the light, so as to bask in its life-giving energy and/or to process nutrients.

And on...

You are a simple multi-celled organism. You can still sense light in a fairly direct way - it may not penetrate fully into your interior cells, but you can sense the direction of the light from the cells on your outer surface, and you can swim toward the stimulus. It is important for you to be able to sense light, to sense the direction from which it comes so you can move towards it or away from it. When hungry you may feed on the smaller organisms that thrive in the well-lit upper reaches. At other times you may retreat into the safer, darker depths.

And on...

You are a more complex organism. You are still quite small, but your cells are becoming more and more specialized. Most of your outer surface has grown thick to protect you - too thick for you to be able to directly sense light with it. It is still very important for you to be able to sense light, for all the same reasons outlined above - and so, small patches on your outer surface have retained their sensitivity to light, allowing you to sense and react appropriately to light's stimulus for your survival. A sudden flash of darkness may prompt you to bolt - it could be a predator!

And on...

You are a yet-more-complex organism. Your specialized light-sensitive tissues, situated near the clump of nervous-system tissues that serves as your rudimentary brain, have become more and more sensitive to variations in light. The earliest organisms could perhaps only have sensed light's presence, later organisms might sense its intensity or direction. You can sense vague shapes, patches of dark within a field of light or points of light within a vague blackness. This humble ability represents a huge survival advantage for you. Not only do you know when to bolt, you have a decent idea of which way to go.

And on...

You are complex. Your specialized light-sensing tissues are becoming more and more developed. The vague patches of light or dark you see are becoming better and better resolved into images. You can begin to distinguish inanimate from animate...even predator from prey. This is a huge survival benefit.

And on...

As the process continues down through the ages, differentiating, branching out down through all different types of life, those rudimentary specialized light-sensing tissues mature into disparate forms and organs, adapting within a multifariety of physiological limitations to meet the visual needs of different ecological niches.

And on...

You are a highly-complex organism. Your highly-specialized sight organs are situated adjacent to the large clumpy mass of cells that serves as your brain. You are balancing a drink and a small paper plate of dainties in one hand, while you use the other hand to point for emphasis with a piece of spinach-dipped cauliflower. You are explaining to me why an eye cannot possibly be the result of evolution, because a rudimentary eye would give no direct survival benefit.

I look at you. My own eyes brim with love and understanding for you, for the long, long journey that has led you here.

"Buddy," I begin, "you're a piece of work."

Happy Go Blarney! Little-Known Facts About St. Patrick

There were no snakes in Ireland actually, but St. Patrick used to hallucinate snakes something awful when he was hitting the sauce. The story of how he banished all the snakes from Ireland evolved out of a true incident down the pub where, disgusted by a particularly vivid episode of the slithery visions with which he was plagued, Patrick jumped up on a table, spread his unsteady arms dramatically and declared "THAT'S IT! NO MORE SNAKES."

He then left the pub and never took another drop (except at Mass).

Monday, March 16, 2009


God Bless You.

And you should know that I am indeed duly-designated and fully-authorized to make that statement. I sling God blessings left and right! And what's more: GOD BACKS THAT SHIT UP 100%.

All of my God-blessings are backed by the full faith and credit of guess You-Know-Who. That's right! You knew Who: none other than the one-and-only, ever-lovin' omniscient-eyed GOD!

That's who.

So bless yourself before you mess yourself. Yet before you do, I already beat you to it.

So I Watched Watchmen

I'm going to draw an inference here. I'm going to postulate a hypothesis based on what I've observed from the infinite spate of superhero flicks lately. Here is what I've observed:

Simple physics dictates that a person wearing a costume can beat an arbitrarily large number of people not wearing costumes. This principle applies even if the costumed individual doesn't have any super powers, and it applies even if the arbitrarily large number of non-costumed opponents is so arbitrarily large as to render the whole skirmish faintly ridiculous.

We'll see if others can or will back me up on my findings. The implications seem quite provocative.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Open Dream Journal #19: WRONG HOUSE.

The dream begins with an establishing shot of a nice suburban home on a nice street, dark out, early evening. Trees out front, porch light shining from behind the foliage - this is a fairly new, modern-looking 1-story home with a front yard.

More Detail Than Necessary.

Okay, the establishing shot at first seems like a normal establishing shot, then suddenly you realize it is in fact a POV-shot of something moving towards the house.

Now we cut to the inside of the house, the living room, where a small dinner party or gathering is at the hors d'oeurves stage - cocktails and small plates of mixed dainties. There is conversation; normal, human conversation with attempts at wit that mostly succeed at least half-way, and plenty of smiles of sincere warmth. These people all seem like pretty much nice people, dressed comfortably-well off. I myself am nowhere to be seen in this dream.

Suddenly **BANG!!** The front door shakes with an impact! All eyes turn towards, all conversation stops. The knob turns slowly - then the door suddenly thrusts open drawing the door chain taut with a stretched, dischordant, tinny chime of strained metal links! But the chain holds. The door is only open a little way. A frightening head slowly...with an almost gliding motion...comes through the narrow opening, with eyes glaring.

It's me! That's my head glaring! I am in the dream after all.

The head looks around at the entire room, transfixing each person in turn with that hideous stare. Then it looks up and around at the room itself, the furnishings. Then in a low, booming moan of a voice, it declares:


Actually, the first word is really drawn out, like Frankenstein was trying to say it:


Then the head withdraws, leaving the door ajar.

The people are immediately thrown into a panic, this little incident seems like the crack of doom to them for some reason. There's nothing else scary in the entire dream, it just sort of peters out with these people screaming at each other and making frantic ad hoc preparations for whatever awful thing is to come next.

Their precious illusion has been shattered.

Come The Revolution Pt.1

Come the revolution, young lovers with not a care in the world will be the first up against the wall.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Only U2 Can Save The World From Itself!

And by "Itself" I mean: U2.

But I'm kidding, though! They needn't save the world from themselves. They have already saved the world from themselves. In so many ways!

Let's face it - what does it matter what I think or what anyone else thinks of U2's new album? U2 bestride our tiny pebble-like globe of a world like a shining, gigantic colossus of fire. Their musical competence is matched only by their delicate yet firm collective conscience, alloyed to an iron will to embody themselves, as a band, as an ideal: their own. They made themselves, and then they broke their own mold. The bonds that they have forged between each other will outlast them all.

These four men have not only redeemed the aging rebel-pose so pitiful in most over-the-hill rockers, they have made it sexy. To the fury and detriment of self-styled unrespectable rock rebels everywhere, U2 have made rock respectable on a global scale. Respectable at the level of nations. They have created and staffed a new international travelling ambassadorship, beholden to no one, and with temporary consulates in every country they stop to play on their never-ending peacekeeping/goodwill tour.

But are they stuck up with it? Are they besotted with their own sense of exalted purpose? Do they put on airs? Do they strike poses? No! They bring to it the humility and the humanity of anyone who has...well wait, shit - yes, they do strike poses! But that's just part of the job. They're rock stars! You got to jump up on that amp, strike that stance in leather pants with your arms shot high, microphones in hands. But they do it with humility. That's what I'm trying to say, here. These men have a sense of perspective on their towering significance in the grand scheme of things. We can imagine Bono, the Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen sitting on the edge of the stage like grizzled Greek fishermen with their legs splayed swinging loose over the dock's end, swapping old stories and looking out past the horizon with all the dignity of an honest job done well for a lifetime.

And they deserve it. That sense of peaceful, well-earned dignity is earned.

God bless each of U2.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


So I see where there's a G.I. Joe movie coming out. Live action. Actors in costumes. CGI-augmented stunts. You know the type. Things flip over. They have what are called "set pieces."

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, I believe it's called. Sounds like a sequel already!

I'll level with you. Cobra has always been a bit of a problem for me. First off (but not the problem part) is it "Cobra"? "COBRA"? Or even "C.O.B.R.A."...?

I feel like it was supposed to be an acronym, but what for, I have no idea. I could have a crack at it I guess: C for...Criminal! Criminal Operation Busily Redistributing Agony! Criminal Organization Betraying Repugnant Agenda. Covert Operatives Behind Reprehensible Acts?

I hope it stands for something like that. I always love it when the bad guys know they're the bad guys. "We Stand For Evil!" Where do these organizations get their fanatical recruits, though, I'd like to know? It's kind of hard to snake in the well-meaning furious idealist with that sales pitch.

COBRA. They'd never make it in the real world. Take away their endless supply of fanatical, die-first recruits and their unlimited resources and what have you got? These guys are terrorists who operate on the business model of a conventional army. They stage frontal attacks in force. They field tanks and other heavy ordnance. They wear uniforms for Pete's sake! None of the advantages of terrorism. All of the disadvantages of being a military outfit on the up-and-up, wedded to all the disadvantages of following a masked megalomaniac with a squeaky voice.

Yo, Joe.

Freud, Marx, and Darwin: A Comparison of Three Geniuses

Freud was a Marketing genius who was able to repackage Philosophy as Medicine. His bigoted and idiotic theories on psychosexual development and mental disease causation are rightly widely mocked today. His fanciful 3-part division of the psyche is a poetic metaphor at best. But he did do a great deal to popularize and stereotype the way of the "talking cure," and that's something.

Marx was also a Marketing genius. He repackaged Philosophy as Economics. As many have pointed out, Marx's belief in a predictable, inexorable historical dialectic was more doctrine than theory, more secular religion than science or even philosophy. But there can be no doubt that by brewing up and ballyhooing his own heady "opiate for the proletariat," Marx had an enormous impact on the course of history: people bought into it big time. A certain class of people felt the desperate need for something other than the entrenched belief systems to believe in, and Marx provided them a classy new ethos and mythos to kill and die for. His bearded specter exhorted and cajoled hordes of innocent idealists and their by-definition-reactionary victims down a gore-strewn path, headlong always onward towards the glories of the ever-receding dream of collective weal.

Everyone these days likes to say that Philosophy has died out. Look a little closer: it just took a bath and changed clothes. With the death of ethical absolutes, Philosophy was forced to look elsewhere for its validity. It had to redefine the game by inventing new absolutes, loosely and speciously tied to more respectable disciplines. It had to be repurposed as "Science." Don't you be fooled. Any "Science" whose principles are not grounded in theory and experimentation, with claims of certainty validated by reproducible results, is just Philosophy with a costume-shop lab coat on.

Darwin was less a philosopher and more what used to be called a "natural philosopher" - which is to say, he was a scientist. His theories have only grown in prestige and acceptance over the past 150 years. Today, only the most struthious of disputants can fail to see natural selection's undeniable impact on the development and speciation of organisms.

All three of these men had beards.

The Riddle of the Modern Economy

Money is a wonderfully engrossing collective fantasy. We all agree to pretend money is worth something, so we can feel happy trying to gather up stacks of it, and thrill to the ups and downs of its fluctuating value.

It's just something we do to pass the time. And, you know, buy food.

There's got to be a better way, though. The barter system! Oh, for those halcyon days when you could walk into a car dealership and drive out with a brand-spanking sedan after bartering them down to a cost of 60,000 brown eggs.

Of course, the second you drive it off the lot it drops 18,000 eggs in value.

Adequate Hydration Is The Key To Unlocking The Body's Metabolic Potential

Just so you know. Just in case you didn't.

Blue Thought of the Day

I want to live the same life that I've lived for others for me.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


I looked up at the full moon. And somewhere in time at that exact instant, Marcus Brutus did his honorable duty!


So. How Else Are You Doing?

Me, I'm alright. I'm fine. I'm okay.

I'm outrageously okay, actually. I'm preternaturally fine. I'm not only alright, I'm all-left, all-up, and all-centered.

I get a weird twinge in my foot sometimes. The doctor says too much methamphetamine makes me nervous.

I look out at the sky sometimes and wonder, "why can't I be like that?"

Then I realize: I already am.

Prayerful Thought of the Day

When you pray, make sure to let God get a word in edgewise.

The Tax-Reform Advocate #7: This One's For The Children

I think all kids should get to take a deduction for each dead parent. Because in many ways, not having a parent is at least as big an inconvenience for a kid as having a kid is for a parent! Think about it.

In fact, it could work exactly like child support works when the parent is absent. Except: the government pays, which dovetails neatly into my whole ideal "Mother Government" scenario. The government steps in, to fill the role vacated by the missing parent. Ultimately this could be expanded so that the government could fill that role whether the parent is missing or present, alive or dead. Because let's face it - how can any one or two of us be as good a parent as ALL OF US PUT TOGETHER? In a serious society, that is the level of active focus and dedication that would be brought to bear on each child. That's what I mean by "Mother Government" - or "father government" I suppose, but frankly, we've already had far too much of that old time paternalistic fascism. Bring on the matriarchal fascism! Kind n' gentle!

The other thing is: when the government pays, WE ALL PAY. That means everybody gets a say - and everybody wins.

We owe our children that much. At least.

Cross-Media Saturate and Maximize Me, Please

Some people are waiting for the movie. I'm holding out for the novelization of the documentary of the making of the soundtrack to the last straight-to-DVD sequel, prequel, or t.v.-quel.

I mean, in the final analysis, you can't really tell whether something is any good until they've wrung every last dwindling drop of profit from its last-gasp expired, beaten-like-a-dead-horse corpse.

Or can you?

I'll grant you, maybe you can - sometimes. But really, even then it's still a bit premature. I like to wait until all the facts are in, myself.

A Chilling Tale of Christmas, for Your FACE!!

Suddenly, a black silhouette crashed into sight, from out of his left peripheral to fill nearly his whole field of vision. "YOU!! It hissed sibilantly," it hissed sibilantly. "Yes, me! But who - or WHAT - are YOU?" he returned, warily and with an incredulous stare - not daring to blink or avert eyes lest this appalling specter depart as quick as it had come, and by an equally mysterious route! "I am the Ghost of Christmas Deferred! it laughed, coughing and hacking as it shook from mirth," it laughed, coughing and hacking as it shook from mirth. "That's going to get old pretty fast," he thought, warily and with an incredulous stare - not daring to blink or avert eyes lest this appalling specter depart as quick as it had come, and by an equally mysterious route! "But not as fast as THAT," he added mentally. "Why have you come, spirit? Why trouble my repose with your sepulchral prognostications?" (That part, he said aloud.) "Spare me your vocabulary!" it purred. "You know well why I have come."

Indeed I did.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

New Perspectives on Anti-Aging

Aging is something we all deal with. But contrary to conventional wisdom, it can be stopped. And I don't mean "theoretically." I'm not talking some far-fetched science fiction solution. I mean real, right now, today - by means of a process that not only has been tested and perfected, but is entirely natural. People every day, all across the country, are putting the process into practice and getting 100% results.

If you're wondering "Why hasn't this been in the news, then?" - it has. Just about every newspaper puts out a list every day of people who have found the way to stop aging, and put it into practice.

Maybe you've been looking in the wrong section.

Musings from a Semi-Disinterested Devil's Advocate #7

Have you ever prayed to God asking if he'd ever see fit to forgive the devil? Or do you think they have a certain philosophical understanding between them, that that's not a deal either one of them wants to ink?

The Path of Sin

he comes over and opens your heart
lays you low
you can never believe in the art
it's just for show
a big part of you telling yourself
please say no
the little part of you getting its way
red means go
and the path of sin
leads you back again
the path of sin
leads you back to him

you won't find it in anyone's book
they won't explain
you've been trying to write it all down,
to make it plain
you don't know what the meaning is for
still, it's there
you don't want to belittle yourself but
when the path of sin
leads you back again
the path of sin
leads you back to him

now it's time to give up your self
no you never believed in hell
but you know what you need to hear
and who you won't listen to

you grew up with a conscience of steel
and you can't fight
but there's no way you'll be letting yourself down, no
not tonight
it's as simple as what you allow
nothing more
you need something to take what you feel and make
when the path of sin
leads you back again
the path of sin
leads you back to him

now it's time to give up your self
no you never believed in hell
but you know what you need to hear
and who you won't listen to

Open Dream Journal #40: Almost Paradise

I dreamt last night that I was performing in a talent competition of some kind. People were acting like it was a "big deal" but really it looked as though it was being held in an elementary-school gymnasium. I was singing the song "Almost Paradise" (from the Footloose soundtrack) and accompanying myself on piano. At the start of the song, I announced to the crowd that it was a duet, but that since I was singing it by myself, the audience would have to sing the Ann Wilson part.

At first, it was only one or two people in the audience who stood up to sing the Ann Wilson part. But by the end of the first chorus, nearly the whole crowd had stood up and joined in, and they all seemed to know it by heart! Every word.

It was all pretty triumphant, right up until I myself screwed up the lyrics near the end - which caused some hoots and catcalls to be mixed in with decidedly unenthusiastic applause, after I finished. Still. For such a tough crowd, they had really "bought in" to the audience participation aspect! I must say. I felt pretty good about my salesmanship, showmanship-wise. It's tough to cajole forth that audience participation, without seeming like a presumptuous ass. Plenty of times I've gone to a show and there's some dick up there on stage, nagging you to sing along louder, or to clap in a really organized way. Fuck you, dude! You can't nag and harrass the paid public. You've got to elicit it from them naturally. Effortlessly.

Like I was able to do in this case, apparently. So score one for me on that.

The tepid response, I have to put down to my piano playing (plus the muffed lyric, which I can understand would stick in their collective craw considering they all knew the words). See, I can't play piano at all, under normal circumstances. Not hardly, anyway. But in the dream, I was able to accompany myself quite decently! Yet, every time I tried to do anything special on the keys, it came out as the most unwarranted and awful virtuoso jazz flourishes. The effect was as if I knew how to play perfectly well, but was deliberately undermining the song for some reason with these inappropriate jazz elements. Kind of like Sting I guess?

Anyway, it was a pretty cool dream on balance. I'm more or less proud of how I put the song across, despite the one or two hiccupy aspects. And the person who won - he really knocked it out of the park on his rendition of Glenn Frey's "You Belong to the City." So I can't really feel too bad. Losing to that.

In fact, I think it might have actually been Glenn Frey. Which, hell! To lose to The Glenn Frey, in a talent competition...?! That'd be kind of an honor.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Live From New York New York, It's...Late Night With JIMMY FALLON!

I forgot to chime in, but I saw the first one of these. Was it just me, or during the monologue did he seem a little bit terrified in a couple places? Primarily around the eyes, a couple of times. 3 to 10 times maybe. Just flashes of it, mind you! Flashes of SHEER TERROR.

I thought the audience was a little slow, honestly. Some of the funnier bits fell flat, even though in my opinion he pretty much nailed the delivery.

I remember Conan's first show - he didn't seem scared, but he sure did come across HYPER AND AWKWARD! And he got better eventually. Much better. Got it down to only one or the other of those, at a given time - and occasionally, neither! It's a success story that shows how far you can go if you're tenacious, and the network gives you the time to develop and stretch out. Find your comfortable rut in which to excel.

I like Conan, by the way. I'm a Conan FAN. Jimmy, best of luck to ya. Chin up. You clobbered the smooth host vibe as one-half of Weekend Update, I have no doubts you've got it in ya!

But one thing, though: what the fuck. Since when did you develop that LISP?? Is this a stress thing or a lifestyle choice? Go see a speech therapist or something.

No offense. You're in broadcasting, dammit.

My Word Of The Day


The word of the day is KA-JEESH!!

Use as an interjection, sparingly. Said with the proper emphasis, it can be a quite useful aid to get across that which would otherwise perhaps border on the ineffable.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The Top H Film Musicals of All Time

I've been holding off on this one, because I didn't have enough material. But I caught a few real classics recently, and now I feel confidently informed enough for the undertaking, such as it is.

First: a point of blinding clarity. I'm not talking about your latter-day "rock musical" musicals, here. I'm talking about the real deal. Your classic, song and dance, beltin' and hoofin' Hollywood-style (or at least, Hollywood-scope) MUSICALS.

For me, the criteria, the dividing line is this: in what context do the majority of the musical numbers occur? Do people just bust out into song right in the middle of an ordinary life moment? In front of other people, who more often than not may join in? Do they start singing because they just have to sing, just to express themselves? Because mere spoken words cannot contain the superabundancy of their feelings?

If so, then we're looking at a musical. It's not a "musical" to me if the majority of "numbers" are excused/explained (from a dramatic standpoint) by the characters being musical performers, just singing a song because that's part of their job.

SO! Without further ado, (drum roll, pleeease) I give you the Top H Film Musicals of All Time!:

H. The Wizard of Oz - although this loses points for being "only a dream." I hate that cliché. I hate it even if this was historically the first film where it happened! Which I doubt. But anyway, they should have found some way to flip the script on that only-a-dream biz. She should have woke up, pan down - HEY! THE SLIPPERS!! "Ohmigosh" moment!

G. My Fair Lady - What a classic story. What delicious performances! Who cares if they dubbed in her singing voice in post-production? I heard that they saved the original vocal tracks and that in actual fact, she done herself proud. It's just that her more heartfelt delivery wasn't up to the spit-and-polish homogenized professional standards and styles of the day. Which I can easily believe! I'm inclined to easily believe that sort of thing. Believing in that sort of thing affirms little details of hope that I live by. I even went out and got that "we're really doing the singing this time" album that Milli and Vanilli did (under their secret identity names, Rab & Fop, I believe). They were definitely singing in their own true voices! You could tell, because they didn't sound a thing like themselves. But it wasn't awful.


Actually, that's it.

Possibly have to throw the Sound of Music in there at some point, after I've ever gotten around to seeing it. Aw, hell though - I guess I can take that one on faith! Here:

F. The Sound of Music. Everybody says. Plus I'm pretty sure it stakes out a bold-for-its-time anti-Hitler stance.

Speaking of Hitler, maybe put The Producers in there...! Except, I'm not sure the original was a musical. I mean, I saw it! But was it? Since they ended up turning it into a musical later, maybe it originally was technically something else. I can't remember now, whether Bialystock and Bloom were singing at each other, or if the music was mostly within the context of the stage musical they were staging to fleece the backers. But I thought there might have been a moment or two in their office, where they resorted to song to get their feelings across.

But maybe not? Let's leave it at that, due to lack of evidence.

That's Fine!

I say that a lot in life: "That's fine!"

And to let people know I'm not being sarcastic, I say it with a wide grin, and really draw out that long "i" sound:

"That's fiiiiiine!"

Sometimes I'll throw a "Say," in front too. You may scoff, but it works!

Monday, March 02, 2009

A Thousand Ships For This?

Speaking of Trojans, I saw part of Troy the other day and...wait, actually I think I saw the whole thing. They sure made the Trojan War look like it took like, a week!

I can't wait for The Odyssey. Should be epic. Condensed epic.

My Grand Place In The Scheme Of Things

I do not want to be the center of my universe. I really don't! I could care less about such merely positional considerations. I'm fine hovering over to the side, or wherever I'm needed most. See, I want to be an instrument of divine will. I mean, I already am - you better believe it! But I don't want to have to think about it so much. I want it to come second-nature to me, at some point. I want to learn more and more, and think more and more about what love means and life means, so that eventually I will know what to do with my life because I will know what's right. Just by instinct. I want to achieve instinct.

I really want to help people, but I don't know how. See, the problem is, I don't secretly believe that God has any actual specific plan for me. Maybe I just need to trick my mind into believing that!

Hey, don't mistake me: this is not about wanting to be a better person. I'm already a better person. I'm a better person on like, a permanently recursive circuit. I'm not just a better person, I'm like: better, personified. I have no qualms about it, either. But the fact that I already am a better person doesn't satisfy, somehow. And no, it's not about getting "even better"! I told you: I already am better. Mission accomplished. But what do I do with that? That's the eternal question of the moment.

I mean, on some level I already know the answer to that one, too. I guess just like to throw a little angst around, from time to time. Some people grind their teeth in their sleep, I wring my hands.

It's important to do what you can.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Open Dream Journal #25: Back to the Blob!

I remember one dream where the Blob came after me (the 1988 Blob not the 1958 Blob), and it engulfed me, and I was completely drowned and my body was dissolved, but...I was still dreaming, so it turned out that now I WAS the Blob.

It didn't feel like much. I was able to control the motion and contract and expand, extend pseudopodia, etc etc, but there was no real tactile sensation from across my membraneous exterior. There was a general discomfort from the tall grass getting uprooted and sticking in my ventral surface (until it dissolved), but apart from that there was almost no sense of touch whatsoever.

I'm not really sure what I was seeing out of.

You know, I think this dream marked the point where I was no longer as freaked out by the Blob. I used to be freaky scared by the Blob as a kid. But an experience like this tends to give you perspective.

NO I DIDN'T ABSORB ANYBODY. For an enormous formless mass, I was totally reformed. Morally speaking.

Still, it was an unpleasant dream. I was sad that I was the Blob. I was glad I'd been able to "take over" somehow, and thus halt the gooey, murderous rampage, but I was very sad that my nice happy body had been totally consumed and dissolved! Poor body.

The death itself was pretty grody. I mean, I basically drowned, but it was a drowning within a thick, viscous and corrosive gel. Maybe suffocation would be a better word? But it felt more like drowning. Definitely a liquid aspect. That gunk right down in my lungs! And then I started seeping out and drifting apart as I dissolved. Disgusting! Yuck!

I wish now that at the time I'd been more cognizant that it was only a dream, and that I'd focused on doing more cool things and experimenting after I became the Blob.

Anyway, I was getting plenty of nutrition from the grass. The Blob's just an asshole, going after people like that. If you ask me.