"what happened to the bangles?": old post from the well #41, 31 jul 00

Posted on April 13th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Musicians, Old Posts, Words.

Debbi converted to Zoroastrianism and distributes leaflets in Fresno bus shelters. Vicki has returned to her first love, waitressing. Michael is a lobster fisher in the Maritimes. Susanna was carried off by a twister.


"date match":old post from the well #40, 8 aug 98

Posted on April 12th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Badness, Comedy, Old Posts, Words.

Looking for a man who "walks to a different drummer," "takes the road less traveled," and isn't afraid to say the emperor's naked, even when it isn't "politically correct." Are you my "free thinker"?


"asking the silicon valley tarot": old post from the well, #39, 15 sep 02

Posted on April 9th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Oracles, Words.

My question pondered, carefully rehearsed,
Submitted to an oracle profound.
The Salesman of Cubicles reversed,
The Five of Networks binding all around.

A pause, a click, an inauspicious sound,
It spits a blank. My high-tech fortune's cursed.
If tarot chips won't tell me what they've found,
I'll slink back home, and just assume the worst.


"lines you rarely read in reviews": old post from the well, #38, 7 sep 02

Posted on April 7th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Literary Criticism, Music Criticism, Old Posts, Words.

While my opinion runs counter to the critical consensus, it has nothing to do with unusual bravery and insight on my part, or cowardice and conventionality on the part of my colleagues. I'm just a bit odd.


"i'm thinking of a movie" (old post from the well, #37, 5 oct 01)

Posted on April 5th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Movies, Old Posts, Words.

There are no bats in this movie.

No one sucks a potato through a straw.

Neither the best boy nor the gaffer ever worked with Trent Lott.

Astrology plays no meaningful role.

Queen Victoria expressed no known opinion regarding this film.

No vehicle of mass conveyance plunges over a cliff.

The credits were not signaled in morse code by Bill Robinson.

There is no mysterious pattern of hair loss among the cast members.

The screenwriter did not go on to a successful career in politics.

There are no scenes in courtrooms, mining pits, or abattoirs.

Nothing Pauline Kael has said is likely to change anyone's mind about this film.

If you cut this film into millimeter-wide strips and strung them all together, it would not reach the moon.

The plot does not turn on a deathbed confession about the oatmeal.

The film never made the American Legion's censorship list.

It is no more nutritious than most films. Probably less.

I don't remember whether mumblety-peg occurs, but it is of no great importance.

If the male lead were dropped on your foot, it would hurt.

It was not filmed in feel-o-rama.

You can't roller-skate in a buffalo herd.

Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is all in your head, as usual.

It is not NORMAN... IS THAT YOU?

1 comment.

old post (from the well) #36, 24 jul 96

Posted on March 27th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Words.

There have been two main things said by the opponents of drugs for the last thirty years that have been borne out by events, one overt and one covert. The first is, "If you take drugs we will do everything within our power to ruin your life." The second is, "And if we have to ruin society to do it, well, every war has collateral damage. We're destroying the nation to save it."


old post (from the well) #35, 25 feb 03

Posted on March 24th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Old Posts, Words.

People describe me as odd, different, strange, a bit touched. That's their way of saying I'm a bizarroid. Sometimes they call me unusual or weird, in which case what they mean is I'm truly mental. When they want to say that I'm certifiable, instead they call me bugfuck, gonzo, waaaaay out there man. But when they describe me as deviant, atypical, outlandish, irregular, mutated, off-the-wall, kooky, loony, wacky, unorthodox, not all there, screwy, unconventional, offbeat, goony, unstable, wayward, and flaky, that's when I know that they think, deep down and after all is said and done, that I'm just a bit predictable.


old post (from the well) #34, 13 nov 00

Posted on March 24th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Words.

Over the weekend I dreamed that me and a bunch of my friends were invited to take away a bunch of books from an old house. I got there too late, and all the good books were taken, but it turned out that accepting a book was actually a transmission for an alien virus, and all my friends were now part of the same hive mind, though they retained their individual personalities, which was pretty creepy when they were trying to persuade me, each in their own distinctive way, to join the hive. I knew as long as I didn't accept anything anyone else gave me I would be safe, but I had to consider the possibility that it was better to be part of an alien hive mind than still have my own will but be alone in the world.


old post (from the well) #33, 18 may 00

Posted on March 13th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Media, Music, Old Posts, Words.

I am now the publisher of the Sonicnet front page every morning. So I figure I'm getting paid to not write my own headlines:






old post (from the well) #32, 12 oct 98

Posted on March 13th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Music, Musicians, Old Posts, Words.

From a No Doubt website:

"Fan site including +70 pics of Gwen, pics of EVERY band member including horns!"


old post (from the well) #31, 25 jul 96

Posted on March 13th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Musicians, Old Posts, Words.

Look, Oingo Boingo were pretty damn good, but put down XTC and I kill you. They disconnect my atoms and rearrange them; they reprogram my synapses and polish my dendrites; they save my life every two weeks. If that's pretentious, man, lock me in grad school and shower me with footnotes.


old post (from the well) #30, 15 jul 97

Posted on March 12th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Old Posts, Words.

Whenever I hear the word "fail" I reach for my revolver.

1 comment.

old post (from the well) #29, 1 apr 97

Posted on March 12th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Badness, Old Posts, Words.

Today, just now in fact [well, nearly thirteen years ago, but anyway], I created a very impressive special effect, and I wish i hadn't. You know how corningware's supposed to be virtually unbreakable, except when it shatters spontaneously deep in the cupboard? Don't believe them. I'm housesitting for friends, and I wanted some beans and rice. Pulled out an appropriately-sized corningware pot, and went to the kitchen where the lids are propped on a wall unit. I carelessly pulled the right-sized lid, and it took the next-larger one with it; that lid crashed to the floor, and astonishingly (I wish I were in a position to admire this) crashed right through the pot I was holding. Corningware all over the kitchen floor to the atomic level. Me left holding a very sorry little corningware pot handle. Now I have to (heavy sigh) go clean it up.

And, naturally, this means that there is now a pot without a corresponding lid, and a lid without a corresponding pot. I'd worry about replacing them, but right now I DON'T GET TO HAVE ANY RICE AND BEANS.


old post (from the well) #28, 21 may 97

Posted on March 11th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Dance, Old Posts, Songs, Words.

Last night I dreamed that I was skipping and running cheerfully along a colorful series of ledges, rails and ropes, with a partner, improvised yet perfectly synchronized, while around us "The Candy Man" by Sammy Davis Jr played, and it was the beats and chord changes of the song that we improvised our steps to. And it all. felt. perfectly. natural.


old post (from the well) #27, 12 apr 99

Posted on March 7th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Words.

Irony is the all-purpose ass-cover.


old post #26, 13 oct 05

Posted on March 6th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Stock Phrases, Words.

Blurbs that go on about sacred cows, naked emperors, puncturing pretensions, daring to say what others only think, etc, lean upon the reader to agree or be judged cowardly, staid, unhip. It's an attempt to put the reader on the defensive if they don't care for "satire" that is generally about as daring as a fart in class.

Worst of all: "This book has something to offend everyone."


old post #25, 12 jul 01

Posted on March 3rd, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Old Posts, Words.

Also, and I don't know a gentler way of saying this, B.R. Myers is not the writer Mark Twain was. --rbr on the Well

A few gentler ways of saying Myers isn't the writer that Twain was:

1: Myers isn't the writer Twain was. (But then, who is?)

2: Myers, while a fine writer in many ways, is not the towering giant of literature that Twain was.

3: Twain -- and I don't want to overstate this, because after all Myers is young and history may judge him kindly -- was a great writer, of course, while Myers has yet to establish his possible greatness.

4: Without wishing to dismiss your comparison out of hand, or discount its relevance to the argument, I think it's worth pointing out that Twain is a great writer, and Myers is, perhaps, slightly less than great.

5: I appreciate your point regarding Mark Twain; thank you for bringing it to the table. It certainly can be said that Mark Twain's famous attack on Cooper is similar in some ways to the BR Myers piece. We would be remiss not to acknowledge that. However, I think that it is also worth noting that Mark Twain is a great writer, and that his stylistic and rhetorical skills may have much to do with the success of his Cooper piece; while Myers, though able and worthy, lacks some of Twain's vigor, concision, and insight.

6: Myers isn't the writer Twain was, IMHO.


old post #24, 22-24 may 99

Posted on March 2nd, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Books, Old Posts, Reading Classics, Words.

I'm three-fourths of the way through I Capture the Castle. It really isn't that much like Cold Comfort Farm, in my view, except for the charm of the narrative voice; it's not at all a farce, mainly. It's a romance, a good one, and right now it's awfully sad, though I trust it doesn't remain so.
(. . .)
Just finished I Capture the Castle. It's heartbreaking. I didn't expect that. It's a marvelous book, but I'm not sure I'm ever going to want to reread it.

(Note: It's eleven years. I remember it as a marvelous book, but indeed I haven't reread it. Maybe I will; I'm very forgetful now.)


old post #23, 3 jun 97

Posted on March 2nd, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Comedy, Old Posts, Words.

(My entry in a "literary commercial" contest.)

When I was one-and-twenty
I heard a wise man say
'Think well upon your future:
Your life will end someday.

Stash pearls away and rubies,
Embrace security.'
But I was one-and-twenty,
No use to talk to me.

When I was one-and-twenty
I heard him say again,
'A State Farm Family Policy
Was never bought in vain;
'Tis paid in small installments,
And buys you easy sleep
Till you are one-and-ninety
And buried six feet deep.'

--"A.E. Housman"


old post #22, 2 may 01

Posted on February 28th, 2010 by Scraps.
Categories: Old Posts, Reading Classics, Words, Writers.

A Wrinkle in Time is explicitly religious all over the place, but it doesn't have the veneer of priggishness and cold self-righteousness that ruins parts of the Narnia books. L'Engle's mood is more pitying than judgmental. On the other hand, she treats evil as a force more than a choice, and while Lewis's opposite treatment is more judgmental, it also has more to do with the way evil actually works, in my opinion. I'd rather re-read L'Engle's books, but a lot of the reason the religious message slides right by, in my opinion, is that it's not grounded in the actions of the characters. In the Narnia books, Edmund falls into evil by choice, and is redeemed by choice (as is Eustace, while Susan is cold-heartedly damned). In A Wrinkle in Time, Charles falls into evil because he is possessed by the evil force while trying to save his father. That's scary, but it's also unreal in a way that Edmund's choices are not.


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