Category Archives: people

it’s already almost halfway through january… 😒

moe is going to orlando on saturday. we finished with the panto last weekend, and, yesterday, macque tested positive for COVID, which means that he likely was exposed at the panto. moe sez she’s going to wear her mask religiously, except for when she’s drinking water, but… i was potentially exposed to macque, and moe was potentially exposed to me, and nobody will know anything until she’s already in orlando. we’ve arranged for a puppy-sitter to take quill (the new puppy), so that i won’t have to deal with an un-trained seven-month-old puppy, which is a good thing, because i actually have a paying gig on saturday (the day moe leaves for orlando), in georgetown, and, with moe in orlando, a puppy would put a severe strain on my ability to perform successfully.

i harvested around 15 dried grams of wavy caps from my experimental mushroom patch, and, as far as i can tell, the mycelium has grown into the ground, which means a much higher possibility of more wavy caps, if not soon, at least next year. dare i say, this is a long-term project that appears to have gone right, for a change.

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blah blah, new year, new me, blah blah blah… 😒 i’ll tell you what: i’m going to do the best that i can NOT to kill myself this year, through direct or indirect action (indirect, in case you’re dense, refers to COVID or something like that). my “new years intention” (because “resolutions” are too restrictive) is less depression.

along those lines, i didn’t get a harvest from my “experimental” mushroom patch last year, but it has developed LOADS of mycelia… now, there’s no GUARANTEE that they’re “the right kind” of mycelia, and, until they start sprouting mushrooms, there will be no way to know for sure, but… it was three unplanted containers of sterile potting soil, covered with a thin layer of wood chips and straw, which i inoculated with mycelia LAST YEAR. i didn’t plant anything else in the containers, and, basically, i have left them alone for a year… apart from watering them occasionally, during the dry months last summer. i don’t KNOW that the mycelia i propagated is the one i’m looking at, but… well… there’s enough mycelia that all i had to do was disturb the top layer of wood chips SLIGHTLY to expose A LOT of mycelium… so there’s always hope…

however, even with auxiliary mushrooms from matrix genetix, the weather has been snowy/rainy/awful enough that it has been difficult to take as much mushrooms as i like, so i’ve been taking “microdoses” that i can’t perceive, but which smooth out the bumps to the point where i’m not snapping at people, complaining about everything, and being a complete recluse… but i’m still not particularly pleasant to be around. 😒

i’ve got to have my car serviced. i’ve been noticing a significant decrease in mileage for the past few months, i may need new tires, and, apparently there are “firmware upgrades” that are only available from the dealer. but the closest hyundai dealer is in renton, and i’ve pretty much burnt my bridges with the renton hyundai dealer years ago. there’s a dealer in auburn, with whom i haven’t burnt as many bridges, and there’s the dealer in puyallup where i bought the car, but this is sunday AND new year’s day, so i’m not even going to be able to call anyone about it until tomorrow. meanwhile, i’ve got to go to costco (tomorrow), and moe is leaving for a week in orlando on the 14th, which, coincidentally, is the same day thaddeus and i have our first paying gig of the year.

i got a “small” package, yesterday, of incense from one of the more reliable US distributors i deal with (“small” meaning only two kilos 😉), delivered by USPS, which was totally saturated, as though it had sat outside in the rain overnight, or something like that — which it certainly did not do outside of my house. 😠 only half a kilo of the two kilos of incense were damaged, and i have notified the shipper, but (once again) it is the new year, which means at least there won’t be anybody there until tomorrow, and i’m not sure there is anything that can be done about it, anyway. 😒

the moisture festival is happening. hooray(?). it’s going to be at the broadway performance hall, a “union shop” — meaning that there are going to be people not associated with the moisture festival doing things like managing the stage, moving sets, setting lights, operating spotlights and other suchlike stuff, and there’s nothing that can be done to change it. i’m kind of wondering how they’re going to deal with the fact that the bands are definitely not union organisations, but, at the same time, it’s for someone else to deal with. 😒 fortunately. 😒

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last saturday and sunday were the first four performances of the panto during the winter holiday season, in three years. the last time we actually had a panto performance during the holdiay season was in 2019. the panto has been performed at the oregon country fair, last summer, but i missed it because i got COVID19 less than 12 hours before i was scheduled to leave. 😒 it was really fun to perform in a group for an audience again, but i was also acutely reminded of all the “politicial” horseshit that surrounds working for a group of actors and musicians. i was asked to provide a “5 minute warning” which, after two tries, no less than the stage manager told me not to make that noise any longer (this was one of the people on the board of directors, a few years ago, who screwed up the process of printing the posters because she refused to understand how the pricing breaks work, and almost screwed with the process of having the banners created in 2019, because she thought that grommets were not going to be necessary, or some crap like that 😒). also, i was asked to provide two different “ratchet” sounds, but, after two performances, they decided that the quieter of the two (the one that i had actually bought specifically for this performance) was loud enough that the actor couldn’t be heard above it, which means, not only that they don’t have two different ratchet sounds, but, because of the fact that i’m having to “mute” the remaining ratchet, i can’t match the ratchet sounds to the actors actions as well, which is, i’m absolutely positive, going to be irritating and a cause for a “note” later on.

monday (yesterday) i had to get up and take moe’s CPAP machine to the company that made it, because it has been making a strange noise for 6 months or so, and they’ve JUST gotten around to calling her back and making an appointment… but when i got there, they told me that the machine was beyond its EOL, and they would replace it, except that they didn’t have any machines, and didn’t know where to get one. i said, “so, what are we talking about, here? days? weeks? months?” and their response was “i’m not sure”. 😒 i thought it was somewhat unusual for them to have such a blasé attitude about moe’s prescribed medical device, but i brought it home… and, some time between then (around noon) and 7:30, they called moe and said that they had found a machine, which i picked up this morning.

the past couple of months i have been averaging about two incense orders a week. mind you, a lot of them have been for ONE BOX, but, at this point, i’ve stopped trying to get people to order more than one… if they want to pay twice as much (or more) for shipping, as they pay for one box of incense, it’s none of my business… or, i should say, it IS my business… which i would be driving away by telling them that it’s stupid to just order one box of incense. however, at this point, the price for a medium flat rate box is $17.05, my base rate for shipping is $16.50 (which is smaller than a medium flat rate box), and one box of incense is anywhere between $1.50 and $7.50 or so… it’s stupid… but it makes me money, so i’m not going to complain… after all, as far as i’ve been able to tell, i am the ONLY place they can get aparajita, or krishna puja 999 online… 🤷

the snow is mostly gone, but we’ve still got at least two more months of actual winter before things usually start getting back to normal, and despite what that “evangelical” preacher i saw a video of THIS MORNING says about “global warming doesn’t exist because it says so in the bible” (🤬), climate change has already had more than one negative effect on the environment around here, so i’m not going to hold my breath. it really astounds me that we are twenty years into the 21st century, and there are STILL people who believe in angels, demons, jeezis, and “de debbil”, but DO NOT accept the evidence of their own eyes concerning climate change, the economy, abortion, homelessness, health care, gay marriage… people in positions of authority whose word most other people treat with considerably more credibility than mine. 🗡🤬

weird genealogy

we got a whole bunch of new information about moe’s ancestors, and one family group caught my eye almost immediately: moe’s 4xgreat grandparents were related to each other…

221126 weird genealogy
221126 weird genealogy

the brother married into one family, the sister married into another family, they both produced children, who, then, married each other to produce one of moe’s 2xgreat grandfathers…

her 3x great grandparents were first cousins…

we don’t know, for sure, who the brother’s parents were, but they were born 15 years apart, in the same town, in the same county, in the same region of the netherlands, so the probability is fairly high… 🤣

extremism

i’ve been reading, the past couple of days, about “extremism” on the right, and on the left, as being somehow equal in their “extremism”. i was reading about how alexandria ocasio-cortez had to “stand up” to an interviewer who tried to imply that the two forms of “extremism” are the same, and it reminds me of something my old friend xydexx said about nazis. imagine this:

you and your extended family are having a potluck picnic, and everyone is supposed to provide some food. but when you arrive at the picnic, there, sitting in the middle of the table, is a huge steaming platter of dog shit, surrounded by dishes of actual food, provided by other relatives. do you want to interact with the person who put the dog shit in the middle of the table? and what about the rest of the food… would you be inclined to eat ANYTHING from a table that featured a huge steaming platter of dogshit? would you be inclined to talk kindly and gently with the person who provided that platter, to find out what their story is, to find out what possessed them to bring a huge steaming platter of dog shit to your family picnic? would you be anxious to hear their reasons for messing up your picnic? would you ignore it, hoping that the perpetrator would change, if given a good example?

the probability is very high that you would not do those things, but that you would find out who the perpetrator is, and eject them (forcefully, if necessary) from the picnic area.

that is the difference between “extremism” on the left versus “extremism” on the right: “extremism” on the left is more inclined to help other people, regardless of who they are, whereas “extremism” on the right wants everything their way, and if it’s not exactly the way they lay it out, they’re going to mess up the picnic for everyone.

xydexx has a multi-paragraph statement about this, but that’s basically what it boils down to. in xydexx’s version, the furry fandom is the extended family, and nazis and other fur-haters bring the dog shit, but the argument expands nicely. when people say “there are two sides to every argument” when the discussion is about having a country with universal health care, instead of causing harm to people you don’t like (furries, gays, trans, etc., etc…), you know that whoever is saying it is probably NOT someone you would want to invite to your picnic.

scary…

today is the midterm election.

republicunts are projected to win majorities in both the house and senate, which means that

  1. they plan on impeaching president biden, more out of spite than anything else (because there’s nothing to charge him with, but that won’t make a difference, because democretins impeached #drumpf TWICE 😒), and…
  2. they are actively planning on (and bragging about it)
    1. eliminating social security and medicare
    2. any and all investigations into the crimes of #drumpf, the stolen government documents at mar-a-lago, and the january 6th insurrection will cease immediately
    3. a national ban on abortion
    4. a national ban on birth control
    5. a repeal of gay marriage
    6. further oppression of trans people
    7. making cannabis and other marginally legal drugs illegal again
    8. further wanton environmental destruction, promoting oil, coal, and elimination of endangered species protections
    9. gerrymandering and further voter suppression to make future election wins by democretins a lot more difficult
    10. other horrendously awful, inhumane, and massively unpopular stuff, primarily because they can.

and, if they win, there’s a much greater chance that #drumpf will run for president, again, and if he does, he will likely win, because of the republicunts’ love affair with voter suppression, and that will basically be the end of a democratic united states. 🤬

and if they don’t win at all (preferably), or if they don’t win enough to make a difference, the republican’ts have openly vowed to wreck the global economy, by refusing to raise the debt limit.

i am staying OFF twit-turd… maybe forever, but at least for a couple of days, or until the election FUBAR has died down a little.

grumble…

moe went to las vegas today. she’ll be back wednesday. the puppy went to stay with someone who is more able to handle a rambunctious puppy who doesn’t realise how big he is. i’m supposed to pick him up on wednesday, before i pick up moe at the airport. the other two dogs are “adults” (and know how to behave), but they are already concerned that moe is gone and won’t be back for a while. under ordinary circumstances, this would be a minor inconvenience, but because of the fact that the north american continent is experiencing YET ANOTHER COVID surge (thanks, republicunt anti-vax morons 🤬), airports are going to be especially dangerous, and vegas (as always) is going to be full of tourists from who-knows-where, who all think that COVID is no longer a concern, because our extremely NOT #drumpf president, joe biden, said that COVID is over. 🤬 and the ones who think joe biden lost the election are the ones who got us this far into the pandemic without any hope in sight, to begin with! 🤬

yeah, i know, it has been a couple months and i really need a mushroom break, but i can’t really take a break from the dogs, and i can’t really take two dogs on a 4-hour hike in the forest while i’m on mushrooms… moe could probably do it… she doesn’t take psychedelics that often, but it’s my impression that the part of her brain that speaks dog isn’t that affected by them. 😉

my stripe problems have vanished. i swiched from stripe to square, disabled the stripe plugin, and that’s the end of it. i’m actually NOT going to cancel my account right away, because i’ve still got 15 IOTM accounts to sell, and i’m really not motivated enough to figure out how to do that on square, in the middle of the run (so to speak). but it feels REALLY good to be quit of them.

the story of the license plate…

in 2019, shortly after faddlefum died, i was in line to inherit one of his license plates, which said “BREATH”. my recollection is that francie and i discussed it several times, and i was supposed to pick it up (or have it mailed to me) by the end of july, but i got caught up in stuff, and didn’t contact her until october, at which point she said she had given it to someone else.

i was friends with kenyth for decades, but i don’t know francie more than in passing: she worked with kenyth before i met him, but she moved out of town (new york, or something, is my recollection), and came back and got married to him until after i had moved out of bellingham, when kenyth already knew that he had alzheimer’s.

i figured that it was because she didn’t know how much kenyth meant to me, and went on with my life, DRAMATICALLY disappointed in the choices kenyth made about a life-partner, and without much motivation to be in contact with her in the future…

and that was where it stood until a couple of days ago, when i got email from francie, saying that she is getting ready to move and came across kenyth’s license plate, and would i be interested in having it.

and, it turns out, it is a VERY GOOD THING i didn’t say something about the fact that she told me she gave it to someone else, because the process of getting back to her involved discovering that gmail is blocking messages from hybridelephant AGAIN, which had me calling kamala to see if she had a phone number for her, and, in the process of explaining the whole thing to kamala, she mentioned that francie had the license plate on display in her house for the past couple of years. maybe i’ll mention it after i have it in my hands.

i can understand if she’s a grieving widow who doesn’t want to give away something that reminds her of her husband (even if he was her husband for a relatively short period of time, kenyth had that kind of effect on some people, particularly women)… but i DO NOT understand telling me that she had given it to someone else, and then putting it on display in her house.

nevertheless, i’m going to bellingham tomorrow, to retrieve the license plate from her. she says she’s having an “open studio” tomorrow evening, in bay street village (which is where the PHBFH lived when i first moved to seattle to go to the tech school), and it will give me a chance to see ken and kamala’s new place… and i might stop by and say hi to darol, as well.

another weird incense customer…

i’ve had an incense customer since 2018. he has always ordered the same variety of incense and nothing else, and, except for his first order, which was for three boxes, he regularly orders 10 boxes at a time… but that’s not the weird part.

the weird part is that, apart from the time between 2020 and 2021, when his orders all came from the same location, he has ordered from a different residential location, in two different states, EVERY SINGLE TIME

and, as i said, he regularly orders 10 boxes of the same variety of incense at a time. 😕

makes me wonder… is he an AirBnB owner, or something like that, and is stocking up for his residences? is he a renter that burns incense so much that he has been evicted, and has to find a new place? is he ordering gifts for random people? what? 😵

stupid motherfucking anti-vax republicunts, update (🤬)

according to the latest CDC guidelines, i was supposed to isolate for 5 days, and wear a mask for a week, as long as i continue NOT to have symptoms.

i isolated for five days, and on the seventh day (three days ago), my rapid antigen test had a SOLID positive line inside of five minutes (moe says it was more like 10 minutes, but i disbelieve her, this time), despite the fact that it’s supposed to take 15 minutes. my impression is that this is a fairly common occurrence, because there are "tips" that you can find on the web, that contain instructions on how to gimmick INCREASE THE PROBABILITY OF NEGATIVE post-COVID testing, which include rinsing nasal passages, blowing your nose, and using a neti pot immediately prior to the test.

but, the thing is, i have a gig TOMORROW where i will, potentially, be playing my tuba for multiple hundreds of probably un-masked people (it’s the west seatle summer festival), and, while it’s going to be outside, there appears to be another "surge" happening: SINCE THE FAIR i have gotten email from no less than 12 people who got COVID AT THE FAIR!! 🤬

and the STUPID MOTHERFUCKING ANTI-VAX REPUBLICUNT NAZIS would have you believe that it’s all a hoax, and that people aren’t REALLY getting sick.

🤬🤬

stupid motherfucking anti-vax republicunts!! 🤬

i SHOULD BE at the oregon country fair, at this very moment… but i am not.

less than 12 hours BEFORE i was supposed to leave, i tested positive for COVID-19. moe tested positive, as well. 😒

i mentioned it on twit-turd™, and some random person responded “your (sic) fully vaccinated? why blame the anti-vaxxers?”

to which i responded “”your” fully vaccinated?” PLONK! 😒”

(if you don’t know, “PLONK!” is the sound that spam messages make when they are shit-canned)

however, here is my reason for blaming the antis/republicunts:

if you recall, way back, two years ago, when this whole pandemic was first starting up, the CDC came out with a statement along the lines of “if we can get EVERYONE to wear a mask for a month, we can defeat this.” this was BEFORE they even had a vaccine…

but there were a whole bunch of anti-mask republicunts who believed #drumpf when he said that it would miraculously disappear, and totally ignored the CDCs recommendations.

and tens of thousands DIED because of it.

then they announced a vaccine, and there were a whole bunch of anti-mask republicunts who said that the vaccine contained aborted fetuses, or some such garbage, and refused to get vaccinated.

literally MILLIONS died, but the antis stood their ground, as millions of THEIR OWN KIND were dying around them…

and, more recently, there has been the “federal” (#drumpf-appointed) judge who decided that the mask mandates for airlines and public transportation were “unconstitutional”, and the rush to re-open businesses, and the rush to “get back to normal” that has totally ignored the CDC recommendations (AND, i might add, COMMON SENSE) which means that millions MORE died…

if we had listened to THE EXPERTS about this, we would have been done with it, or, at the very minimum, be well on our way to recovery by now, but…

now, don’t get me wrong: if a person CLAIMS TO BE an “expert” on something, i ALWAYS take what they say with “a grain of salt”, particularly when they claim to be an “expert” in MY health. but i also know enough history to know that, in 1918, when we had a pandemic of the “spanish flu” (which turned out to be an american phenomenon that was first isolated by spanish doctors), BEFORE the advent of reliable vaccines, the “anti-mask” crowd was the PRIMARY reason (along with world war one) that it lasted for 3 years.

yesterday, i felt “under the weather”, and slept most of the day. towards the end of the day, i transitioned from feeling “under the weather” to feeling truly awful, but (fortunately) moe was there with over-the-counter medicines and common sense, and i actually slept through the night (which is something that i rarely do, under the best of circumstances, these days), and i feel weak, but more-or-less normal today… but i was SUPPOSED TO BE at OCF LAST NIGHT — my panto comrades are going to miss me, there are at least two pieces of music they CAN’T PLAY because there are prevelant tuba parts, and, because of the fact that i tested positive on tuesday night, i can’t even go out in public (even with a mask) until sunday or monday.

and i have ZERO compunction about naming the stupid motherfucking anti-vax republicunts as THE primary cause of this. 🤬

and, despite the fact that boris johnson (the UKs answer to #drumpf) stepped down as the prime minister of the UK, yesterday, i am still not holding my breath that anything is going to change for the better, any time soon.

fortunately, i haven’t seemed to have lost my sense of taste and smell: i’m currently burning incense, which i can smell, and moe made chicken soup, which tastes AWESOME, but both moe and i have commented on the “brain fog”, which will, hopefully, go away over time.

urgh!

from the inside, looking out, life is pretty decent: we’re busking again, there are gigs on the horizon, nothing serious is wrong with the house, i’m getting my art car made… i’ve still got a big, scary thing that hasn’t happened for 2 years, but was pretty much essential to my life for some time before that (which is the oregon country fair)…

but from the outside looking in, 50 years of my life, and most of my identity, has been summarily dismissed by the supreme court, which has indicated its willingness to overturn roe v. wade, despite the fact that there isn’t a single state for which the overturning of roe v. wade commands more than 30% support…

which, of course, is PRIMARILY due to #drumpf, who, despite being impeached TWICE, managed to jam through three supreme court “justices”, two of whom are credibly accused sexual predators, and the other is amy coney barrett, who thinks that a woman’s place is barefoot and pregnant.

and all of that is coming from EXACTLY the same people that gave us matt gaetz, who is under investigation for human trafficking and sex with teenagers, and jim jordan, who is accused of enabling a sexual predator, and roy moore, who is accused of sexually predating teenagers at a mall, and madison cawthorn, who idolises hitler, and films himself fucking his cousin in the ear, and another guy who is a long time republican politician who was convicted of possessing pornographic images of children, and the “jewish space laser lady”, and on, and on, and on, and on, and FUCKING ON!!… 🤬🤬🤬

and the chance that ANY OF THEM are going to face real justice of any kind is vanishingly small. 🤬

and that’s not even to mention the fact that #drumpf, himself, along with ALL his cronies, and partners in crime, are STILL running around free, and having rallies, and spewing misinformation, disinformation, and OUTRIGHT LIES to anybody who will listen, which, apparently, is about 49% of the population of the country…

seriously, politics has gotten so over-the-top, blatantly FASCIST, pretty much ever since #drumpf was elected (but, honestly, i see the first inklings of fascism in the 1970s, when nixon and mcgovern butted heads)… the country, and the world, has gotten so right-wing, “christian”, and “conservative” that it’s beyond merely frightening, and everything i’ve seen seems to indicate that it is going to get orders of magnitude worse before there’s any hope of it getting better…

and, if that wasn’t bad enough on its own, don’t even get me started on climate change… 🤬🤬🤬

continued…

as i was saying…

i’m so used to being depressed and anxious that, when things are going well, instead of enjoying the fact that things are going well, it makes me more depressed and anxious, because i KNOW that things are getting ready to go “wrong-er” than they have ever gone before, and they’re just waiting for me to relax and ease my guard a little, so that they will have even more effect… 🤬

once again, i have found myself in one of those places: everything is going smoothly, the moisture festival is over, and, apart from being sick for a couple of days after it was over (NOT COVID!), everything went about as well as i could normally expect… i had a unicycle class today, and i worked on my free-mounting and my turns, and i didn’t fall off… and one time i managed to ride THROUGH a group of people and i didn’t hit one of them! 😉👍 there’s a better-than-normal chance that thaddeus and i are going busking on wednesday… i got two incense orders this week… the next big thing on the schedule is OCF, which IS happening, and i AM going (despite the fact that it terrifies me), but only because the band needs a tuba… i don’t know that i’m going to do an awful lot other than play music, and hide in my tent, but i AM going to go…

and, yet, i have this feeling of impending dread… gilbert gottfried died the other day, and he was 67… only five years older than me. i’ve already tried to die once, and failed miserably… what’s the guarantee that i won’t be more successful the next time?

combine that with the fact that i haven’t seen a doctor, apart from an ophthalmologist, for more than 10 years, and that is PRIMARILY because, in spite of everything (i.e. my brain injury), i am overly suspicious of “doctors” in general: i have had personal experience, on a number of occasions, where, if it weren’t for ME saying something, i would have been treated for diseases or conditions that I DON’T HAVE, because somebody, somewhere, made a notation error, and nobody actually knew me well enough to know that there had been an error made…

my erstwhile GP, doctor wackaloon, had notated in my chart that i had a heart stent, but had no notation about my brain injury… and he had been my GP for 10 years! 🤬 and when i was in the hospital, recovering from my brain injury(!!!!😠), i had to inform the nurse that i am not, in fact, diabetic, which was in direct conflict with my chart, which said i was… 🤬🖕🤬

and even the ophthalmologist thought i had glaucoma, because she made me take the glaucoma test with my right hand, and my right hand doesn’t work about half of the time! i told her this before i took the test, but she said no, that it was “standard” to test people with their right hand. when i took the glaucoma test with my left hand, like magic, glaucoma was no longer an issue. 😒

and i’m really not sure how to resolve my suspicion of doctors, and go see a (different) GP, because of the fact that i don’t have any health insurance other than medicare, AND the fact that i would probably have to personally interview several doctors before deciding, and i don’t really think that doctors make time for that, these days… 😒

but, at this point, apart from entirely expected “getting old” things, like sore muscles and arthritis, my health appears to be pretty good… which — i guess — is as good a reason as any to figure these things out now, rather than waiting until i actually have something go wrong with my health, and having to make the decision out of hurried necessity… 😒

urgh

so, the tablet-fixer shop got the part in, and they said i could come in any time, and they would fix it “while you wait”… so i took it in this morning, only to discover that the person who can fix it (without destroying it) won’t be in until friday, unless i want to take it to bothell…

the thing is, i’m still more convinced than not, that they’re going to break the screen in the process of taking it apart… like they have, twice, in the past… and if they’re going to have to replace the screen, i would rather that the people who have dealt with me, and my device, in the past, be the ones that deal with me this time, rather than having to “break in” (so to speak) a new person, when my device gets broken… 😒

but i’ve got a zoom class on thursday, and, while i CAN do it on my phone, it’s A LOT smaller than my tablet, which makes things like responding to chats A LOT more difficult… and i’ve got the final rehearsal for the moisture festival on saturday, so if they DO break the screen, it probably won’t be fixed until after the second week of moisture festival, which is the first week i am supposed to be playing the moisture festival… which is decidedly LESS than ideal. 😒

the guy was supposed to come by yesterday and finish the insulation on the ductwork, but because of the plumbing disaster that happened over the weekend, and the EXTREME squeamishness of the guy, it turned out that he REFUSED to work, because of a little puddle of clean water that was left over from them running the hose into the cleanout under the house… 😒 our next door neighbour (who is a professional plumber) came over during the actual disaster, and again, after the HVAC guy left. what the HVAC guy said made me think that there were new leaks and ground saturated with grey water, but when i and the plumber went into the crawl space, the only moisture we could find was a small puddle of clean water… the plumber said that the HVAC guy was being a prima donna and a “pussy”, and called him up to tell him so… which i thought was EXTREMELY funny. but HE won’t be back until NEXT TUESDAY!! 🤬 and they want the crawl space to be COMPLETELY dry, and clean, before they will complete the work… the thing is, the weather has been rainy for a week, now, and, even with a fan down there, the ground moisture is NOT going away. i got a 25-foot sheet of visqueen which i’m going to lay down after a couple more days of the fan being down there, but, if the guy doesn’t finish the work, then i guess i’m not going to pay them the $6,000 that we agreed on when they started. 😒

on the plus side, i met someone who, i think, is my third cousin, once removed: ryan dorward, currently from bali, but normally from vancouver, BC, otherwise known as SHARPS. he is the great-great-grandson of John Muir Dorward, the elder brother of Peter Dorward, my great-great-great-grandfather… which makes our common ancestor Robert Dorward, who lived from 1803 to 1846 in Arbroath, Scotland.

🙄

i swear, these people must be a part of my karass (also, karass), because i keep running into them in THE MOST unexpected places, despite my overall desire to separate myself from them as much as possible… 😒

recently i’ve developed an interest in mycology (who am i kidding, i’ve ALWAYS had a very strong interest in a certain kind of mushroom… 😉) particularly because it seems fairly likely that, with a little coercion (from spores which i already have), i can start producing psilocybe cyanescens outside, in my fenced yard, pretty much whenever i choose to do so.

to this end, i recently purchased a book by mushroom expert paul stamets, called “Mycelium Running”, and, on the colophon page for the book, i noticed that the cover design was by two people, one of whom is andrew lenzer…

who is married to my younger younger sister.* 🙄

the one i haven’t spoken to since… i don’t know, 1988? maybe…? probably earlier than that… maybe as early as 1980… when she was 12 years old… 🙄

and, i have to keep reminding myself that members of one’s karass aren’t necessarily one’s “friends”… 😒

* as compared to my older younger sister, who is two years older than my younger younger sister… but they are six, and eight years younger than me, respectively, so i wasn’t around for a lot of their growing up and getting married stuff, and i have never actually met andrew lenzer, my brother-in-law… but, knowing my siblings, i would wager that there have been many unpleasant stories told about me for years. 🙄

VEWPRF/year-end stuff

i’m slowly rebuilding my music collection. today i added two tom zé albums, from the early 2000s, which are “no longer available” — meaning “the only place to find them is on discogs. one is an album i had pre-cloud-drive-disaster, called “Estudando o Pagode (Na Opereta Segregamulher e Amor)“. the other is one that “just happened” to be available from the same vendor, from two years earlier, in 2003, and it’s called “Imprensa Cantada“. both of them appear in several tom zé anthologies, but the original CDs have artwork that is NOT included in the anthologies, and, especially in the case of tom zé, the graphic artwork is almost as important as the musical artwork in the overall scheme of things. i should be getting another Gogol Bordello CD pretty soon, also

we’re giving away the last piece of ikea furniture that we own, that is NOT shelves, tomorrow… which should be interesting, as we currently have three days worth of snow on the ground, and only a few tire tracks of people driving past our house. it’s the king-size storage bed frame, which means that now we’ve got the adjustable bed frame on the 4-inch legs that it came with (rather than on the 2-inch legs, on top of the storage bed), no storage under the bed (currently), and no headboard (currently). the plan is to get some other form of storage, and a headboard… and, possibly a dresser and nightstand to replace the ones i inherited from my grandparents in 1980-something.

moe is getting “stem cell treatment” on her knees on thursday [UPDATE: WEDNESDAY!!] (hopefully the roads will have cleared enough by then that i can drive out of the neighbourhood). this is to (hopefully) “cure” her bum knees, which currently have no meniscus. if everything goes according to plan, this is going to create “new” padding between the bones in her knee. naturally, “insurance” won’t pay for it, and the only other option — total knee replacement — isn’t happening at the moment because the orthopedist that moe has been seeing is fat-phobic, and won’t operate until she’s lighter than she’s ever been in her adult life. 😒… so the (veterinary) clinic is paying for the whole procedure(!!). alledgedly, it’s going to be a couple of days of being “pretty out of it”, followed by a couple weeks of “light duty”, and then it will develop into an “up to 80% improvement”, which is A LOT better than where she’s been for the past few years.

i’ve managed to stay a lot more insulated from the standard xmas “celebration”, this year, but it’s primarily because of the pandemic, which doesn’t look like it’s going to be ending any time in the forseeable future, barring a miracle of some sort… and, as we all know, miracles that involve anti-vax mask-holes, and the right-wing, republican’t, fascist, white-supremacist IDIOTS that currently make up slightly less than HALF of the population of this gawd-forsaken wasteland, are, for all practical purposes, totally unheard-of… but, on the plus side, almost complete isolation for the second year in a row, has made it so that i have only had to listen to one, partial rendition of “feliz navidad” this year, so i can’t say that’s all bad.

and i got a theremin for xmas! 😎

HAW, HAW, HAW!! 😈

a few moments ago, shortly after 7:00 pm this evening, i was alerted by the sounds of footsteps on our front porch, to the presence of people about to knock on our front door.

i still haven’t gotten over how intensely quiet it is out here. even with my music playing in my office, i was able to hear footsteps on our front porch, and was able to get there BEFORE they knocked on the door.

so i confronted two very young (probably no older than 21 or so) females, in masks, a taller, blonde one in the back, and a shorter, asian looking one (although she spoke with an american accent, so i would guess that she’s not first generation immigrant), JUST as they were about to knock. the shorter one introduced themselves as “missionaries from the church of jesus christ”… and she didn’t have the chance to say “of latter day saints”, because, by that point, i was ALREADY indicating that i was very definitely NOT interested in talking to missionaries. we said our mutual goodbyes and, JUST as i was closing the door, it started to rain…

HARD… 🤣

it rained for 10 minutes or so, REALLY HARD… long enough that, i’m fairly sure, they got TOTALLY soaked… they didn’t appear to have a car in the vicinity, and i have seen them riding bicycles on back country roads, before, so i’m guessing that they had a long, wet walk, in the dark, back to whatever mode of transportation they had… and i KNOW that our next door neighbours on both sides likely had a very similar response to mine… and we’re at the end of a dead-end road, with a what-is-usually-a-pond on the other side of the street… ROTFLMAO!! 🤣🤣🤣🤣

i suppose i should have been a little concerned for their safety, since they were young women, alone, lightly dressed, on foot, in the dark, in the rain, in a remote area known to be inhabited by… less than savoury characters… and bears… 😉

but i wasn’t. 😈

depression art?

210617 stele progress
210617 stele progress
it has taken a really long time to get this far, and i have been going miserably slow, because i’ve had to source materials (and made some pretty dramatic “compromises” in order to simply get the project started… 😒), and because of other things (read “databases”) taking my attention…

AND because i’m being a perfectionist about it, and not being satisfied with the work that i’ve already done… seriously, there have been a couple of times when, despite the work that i’ve already done, i’ve thought about trashing the whole thing and starting over, because ONE TINY DETAIL is slightly askew, which nobody except the most hard-core thelemite would notice…

but, see, that’s the thing… i’m making this because I AM a “hard-core thelemite” (among other things), and, seriously, i want it to be as close to the original as absolutely possible, while, at the same time, being 40% smaller, and entirely made by hand…

AND, BUT, ALSO… a NEW CAR!! 😒 no, no, no… AND because i have been depressed enough that, even when i am doing nothing else, for EXTENDED periods of time, i have been having difficulty finding the motivation to work on it, and i kind of DON’T want it to turn into “depression art”, it being a spiritual piece, and everything…

what i am doing to combat depression:

  1. taking 100mg of bupropion every day. whether it’s doing anything or not remains to be seen.
  2. taking mushrooms occasionally, but not as frequently as i’d like (the most recent time was last tuesday, three mushrooms). along those same lines, i am still:
    • planning on growing mushrooms in the near future
    • got expert advice on call
    • got the spores
    • got the substrate: “Uncle Ben’s 90 minute rice — 90 minutes, perfect every time!”
    • got a still-air egg incubator
    • still need to find information about how and when to transfer from the sterile substrate to “growing boxes”
    • bought some size 00 capsules. am going to try grinding the mushrooms and putting them in capsules to see if i can standardise the dosage a little better. 😉
  3. read “Wired For Love”, planning on buying the book.
  4. convinced moe to read “Wired For Love” (she starts it this weekend)
  5. going as slow as necessary
  6. being as easy on myself as i can.

possibly other things i don’t recall at this time.

whether those things are actually having any effect remains to be seen. i’m afraid to think of what comes next if they’re not having any effect. 😒

whoah!

i learned something about our neighbours down the street… 😲

i’m not going to say who or what, but it explains some things, and i feel REALLY sorry for some of the members of their family. 😟

i hope they get what they need, soon, although, at this point, it doesn’t seem very likely.

updated 😒

because of the fact that they were, for the most part, MAGA chuds, and not real, honest-to-god terrorists, they didn’t do anything more than break a bunch of windows, urinate and smear feces all over the walls, break furniture, steal nancy pelosi’s stationery, and a bunch of other meaningless, mindless vandalism, and then claim that it was all ANTIFA’s fault (hint: it wasn’t).

oh, and one guy, who was trying to steal a picture (of tip o’neill), accidentally tazed himself in the balls and died, and a lady carrying a gadsden “don’t tread on me” flag, was trampled to death, bringing the death toll to five. 😒

the FBI has currently made around 80 arrests, with more, allegedly, in the offing, but the FBI is “having difficulty” identifying people like the “Q-shaman” and “Bigo”, whose identities and general locations i knew about two days ago, while the insurrection was still in progress. (“bigo” has, since, been arrested, and, my guess is that it won’t be too long until qshaman is also in custody)

it’s really a good thing that these people weren’t more organised or had a better idea of what they were going to do once they had stormed the capitol. there were a few of them that had sort of a clue; the right-wing social media was rife with people encouraging kidnapping, murder, and general mayhem, for at least a month beforehand, but there were a only few of the MAGA chuds that actually came equipped for such things. for most of them, once they had broken into the capitol, they had no clue what to do next.

pelosi has invoked the 25th amendment, and said that if trump’s cabinet won’t remove him, congress will impeach him, AGAIN… they PROBABLY won’t have enough votes to remove him from office (again), but he’ll go down in history as the only president ever to have been impeached twice.

ETA: trump’s cabinet is resigning, rather than invoking the 25th amendment. this points out that they knew they were wrong, even before this whole thing started blowing up. if their own base hadn’t screwed up so badly, they all would have gotten away with it! #ImprisonALLTheMotherFuckers!! 🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

ETA: donald trump’s personal accounts have been banned from all social media. not only that, but apple and google have given parler (the right-wing twitter alternative, for people who have been banned from twitter) an ultimatum: either put together a realistic moderation policy or be banned from downloading. this, of course, caused a run on parler, and it’s currently offline all together.

it’s too bad they couldn’t have done this four years ago…😒

ETA: moe gets vaccinated next week. nobody knows when i get vaccinated. they say “may – december, information on phases 2, 3 and 4 coming soon”. “people experiencing homelessness” get vaccinated in april. 🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

sigh

5 weeks after the election, and #drumpf still hasn’t conceded.

his final “legal” attempt to overthrow the election, an attempt by texas to challenge the votes of other states, was rejected by the supreme court today, because it was ridiculous, and he still hasn’t conceded.

126 republican state representatives signed an amicus curiae statement that supported the idea of throwing out SEVEN MILLION legal votes, which makes their continued existence as republican state representatives a violation of amemdment 14, section 3 of the US Constitution…

and he STILL hasn’t conceded…

i don’t think he’s going to concede.

i think we’ll have to drag him out, by his heels, kicking and screaming. 😒

creativity…?

i recorded the tuba part for a collaborative effort to create the panto 2020 “Welcome Song”, but since we can’t actually meet to rehearse, we’re recording the parts, which, presumably, will be together enough that they will be able to be combined together, and then emailed to the people who have come to the pantos in the past.

i experienced the clarinet part, and the “click track”, which was kiki playing the song on the ukulele and singing, along with a metronome. without the click track (which, i’m assuming is the ultimate goal), the clarinet part and the tuba part ended up staying together… mostly… and the times when it seemed like we were going to lose the beat, miraculously, found the beat again in a lot less time than it would have taken if we had been in a live rehearsal.

but it’s really weird playing the tuba part without all of the other parts, only knowing that they will be put together at a later date.

Heirophany
Heirophany
there’s a possibility that thaddeus and i are going to resurrect “Heirophany”, which is me playing the harmonic flute and twiddling with electronic gadgets, and thaddeus playing guitar, and twiddling with electronic gadgets. we released a 12 minute long single — with a fantastic cover, which is a picture of a ‘cello on fire 😉👍 — a couple of years ago, and then didn’t do anything else, but, at this point, we can do it “socially distanced”, and i’ve even been thinking of designing a mask for the harmonic flute, anyway, that will make it so that i can play when it’s windy… only, now, it’s so that i can play while i’m masked… and it’s something where we can play for other people, and, potentially, make some money at it at the same time.

#drumpf still hasn’t conceded, and his lawsuits are getting tossed out as fast as he can file ’em, but, ultimately, i think he’s going to try to make an end run around losing the popular vote and the electoral vote by “declaring” the election invalid, refusing to accept the results, and going to the supreme court (which he has stacked with sycophants) to make the final decision. he has made statements within the past 24 hours that include “just get rid of the ballots”, and “there will be no transition”, and “biden can’t enter the white house without proving that his ballots are legal”, which don’t make it sound particularly like he’s intending to go anywhere. and, while i would like nothing better than to watch as he was dragged out by his heels, kicking and screaming like a three-year-old having a tantrum (which, i have no doubt, would happen, if it came to that), i seriously doubt that any president that comes after that would have any chance of pulling the country back together again any time within my lifetime, i don’t care who he is, or how fast he impliments universal health care and universal basic income.

201111

Trump Tees Up a New Type of Coup: In Plain Sight
by Ted Rall, 201111

Donald Trump revolutionized political campaigning. It was by accident. Because he was too lazy to prepare for or memorize a stump speech, he ad-libbed his rallies; TV networks gave him $2 billion worth of free airtime because something he said might prove newsworthy. Because he was cheap, he made appearances at any random dump that would have him for free; he used the money he saved on big data research that paid off handsomely.

Now the president is attempting to revolutionize the art of the coup d’état.

Leaders of broad-based movements who want to overthrow an existing government usually agitate for revolution in plain sight. The activism of a popular front attracts new recruits.

A coup is the opposite of a revolution. Unlike revolutionaries, who need the masses to succeed, coup plotters require secrecy. A coup is usually carried out by a very small group of insiders. Coup schemers are not interested in, or have concluded that they cannot, obtain popular support. They do not seek to transform society. They simply want power. It is an attempt by a minnow to swallow a whale.

Without the protection of millions of adherents and operating outside constitutional norms, politicians and/or military men who plot a coup must take over the government by surprise. Leaders of the outgoing regime have to be in prison or dead, and thus powerless, before their supporters realize that their nation has been seized by a small faction. A coup d’état is over before it begins in the event that some element of the conspiracy comes to light before the zero hour. The classic example of a failed coup is Operation Valkyrie, the 1944 attempted assassination of Adolf Hitler and overthrow of the Nazi government of Germany by a group of military officers. The plot unraveled when Hitler survived a bomb attack and went on the radio.

Successful coups include the 2004 overthrow of democratically-elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti, whom the CIA kidnapped and spirited away to the Central African Republic, whose president Ange-Félix Patassé had himself been deposed in a coup a year earlier, the Taliban-supported takeover of Pakistan by General Pervez Musharraf in 1999, and the bizarre 1993 self-coup by Russian President Boris Yeltsin, who illegally shelled and dissolved parliament.

All of these events seemingly came out of nowhere. By contrast, Donald Trump is laying the groundwork for a coup attempt in plain sight.

Defying tradition, Trump is still refusing to concede the election since the Associated Press and other media organizations called the race in favor of Joe Biden on Saturday, November 7th. Without presenting evidence of fraud or other wrongdoing, he has filed several lawsuits challenging the legitimacy of the vote count.

Most top Republicans are supporting Trump, or remaining silent and refusing to congratulate Biden. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took to the floor of the U.S. Senate. “President Trump is 100 percent within his rights to look into allegations of irregularities and weigh his legal options,” said McConnell. “Let’s not have any lectures about how the president should immediately, cheerfully accept preliminary election results from the same characters who just spent four years refusing to accept the validity of the last election.”

Asked whether he planned to congratulate Biden, Ron Johnson (R-WI) replied: “Nothing to congratulate him about.” Even as world leaders called to acknowledge Biden’s win, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said: “There will be a smooth transition to a second Trump administration.”

Roger Stone, the political adviser and loyalist pardoned by Trump, previewed the possibility of a post-election military takeover in September. If Trump lost, Stone said at the time, he ought to declare “martial law,” invoke the Insurrection Act of 1807, nationalize state police forces and round up critics and political opponents including Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, “the Clintons,” and journalists because they’re involved in “seditious activities.” On November 2nd Stone said Former CIA Director John Brennan, Former FBI Director James Comey and other former officials who offended Trump “must be tried and convicted of treason” and then “they must be hung by the neck until dead.” Stone is still tight with Trump: news just broke that the president had the IRS wipe away Stone’s bill for back taxes, which totaled $1.5 million.

Attorney General William Barr, following Stone’s recommendation, ordered the Department of Justice to investigate irregularities and improprieties in the election.

In order to enforce martial law Trump would need, and has, widespread support among the police. He would also need the military. Though inherently reactionary, active-duty troops have moved away from the president in recent months. So he is replacing top Pentagon brass with compliant loyalists likelier to follow his illegal and unconstitutional orders.

On November 9th Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who refused to deploy troops against Black Lives Matters protesters in June. “In my experience, there would only be a few reasons to fire a Secretary of Defense with 72 days left in an administration,” Representative Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) and an official in Obama’s Pentagon, said. “[One] would be because the President wants to take actions that he believes his Secretary of Defense would refuse to take, which would be alarming.”

“Two White House officials said later on Monday that Mr. Trump was not finished, and that Christopher A. Wray, the FBI director, and Gina Haspel, the CIA director, could be next in line to be fired. Removing these senior officials — in effect decapitating the nation’s national security bureaucracy — would be without parallel by an outgoing president who has just lost re-election,” reported The New York Times.

In a major, unprecedented transition-period shakeup, policy chief James Anderson, intelligence boss Joseph Kernan and Esper’s chief of staff Jen Stewart have also been fired from the Pentagon. Anderson’s replacement is retired Army General Anthony Tata, a nutty far-right white nationalist who called Obama a “terrorist leader,” said Islam was the “most oppressive violent religion I know of” and used a racist slur against CNN host Don Lemon. He will do whatever Trump wants.

What’s going on? Stupid impetuous drama? Or a real coup?

If it turns out to be a coup, it may well prove that teeing it up in plain sight improves its chances of success. Trump’s supporters, disproportionately prone to violence and more heavily armed, are watching and waiting. They can only pitch in as paramilitaries or freelance goons if, like the rest of us, they see the dark days ahead.

Then Trump’s coup becomes a counterrevolution.


Coups For Dummies
by Clay Jones, 201111

On November 10, 2016, President Obama hosted President-elect (sic) Donald Trump in the White House. Vice-President Joe Biden hosted vice-president elect (sic) Mike Pence in the VP residence. First Lady Michelle Obama gave a White House tour to Melania Trump. Today, it’s November 11, 2020, and instead of inviting the future president of the United States to the White House, Donald Trump is hiding inside his bunker in denial he lost. What makes this even worse is that he has enablers. These enablers are helping Donald Trump thwart democracy.

Republicans are pointing out that Democrats whined about the 2016 election. This is true. I whined. I didn’t like the results. I still don’t like it. But while I said the election was tampered with and Russia meddled, I never said any ballots were fraudulent. No Democrats opposed the transition of power. Today, the Trump administration is not allowing a transfer of power.

The Trump Administration could still pursue legal challenges over the election while allowing the process of a transition to happen. That would be in the best interest of the nation. Instead, offices are not being created for the transition, funds aren’t being released, and the next president isn’t even being given security briefings. These were all acts afforded to Donald Trump when he was the incoming president (sic).

The United States condemns leaders of other nations who refuse to leave office and give up power after losing fair elections. Now, our leader (sic) is refusing to give up power and is hiding inside his palace sending his minions out to help him stage a coup. Donald Trump has not been seen since last Thursday.

Mitch McConnell is supporting Trump’s legal challenges even though there isn’t any evidence of massive voter fraud. Lindsey Graham is telling Trump not to concede. McConnell and Graham both won their Senate elections last week but neither one of these two men refused their opponent’s concessions.

Ted Cruz says allowing the media to declare the winner is not how we do it in America. Except, he was more than happy to accept the media’s declaration of a winner in 2016. He was more than happy to accept their declaration in 2018 when he won reelection to the Senate.

When asked if he had congratulated President-Elect Joe Biden yet, Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson, whose state went for Biden, said he doesn’t have anything to congratulate Biden for.

Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana said, “We have got to allow our courts to hear these allegations of voting irregularities by the president.” You may as well allow the courts to hear allegations of lizard people running our government too because you have just as much evidence of that as you do of voter fraud.

North Carolina’s Thom Tillis was finally declared the winner of his race yesterday and he said about the presidential election, “Every vote legally cast must be counted.” Who says they shouldn’t? Who says they haven’t been counted? Guess what. Tillis didn’t stop his opponent from conceding saying, “Every legal vote must be counted” bullshit.

Isn’t it fucked up that right after you elect someone, that they make a pronouncement against democracy and fair elections?

Attorney General William Barr is releasing the Justice Department’s legal hounds to fight Trump’s loss in the courts. Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani is holding press conferences outside dildo shops claiming the election was stolen from Trump.

It’s funny Democrats stole the election for Biden while simultaneously losing the Senate and seats in the House. It’s also funny that it hasn’t occurred to any of these Republicans claiming fraudulent ballots, that they also have their names on those “fraudulent” ballots. If we’re going to wipe out who won the election, that should also mean we wipe out all those Republican victories. Should we wipe out McConnell’s, Graham’s, and Tillis’ victories?

Each government department is being told to prepare their budgets for next year as though the administration will still be operating. As if they’re still going to be in town and not all applying at Fox News at the same time. And Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, the nation’s top diplomat has said there will be a “smooth transition…to a SECOND Trump administration.”

What the fuck? The top diplomat or the world’s leading democracy is telling the world we don’t obey election results anymore. Pompeo said the eletion has not been decided. It has LITERALLY been decided.

Can you imagine the outrage if instead of conceding the election the day after, Hillary Clinton had refused to admit defeat, mounted legal challenged, and claimed the election had been stolen? Can you imagine if instead of inviting Trump to the White House, President Obama had refused to release transition funding?

In Michigan, Trump beat Clinton by 10,704 votes in 2016. In 2020 in Michigan, Biden beat Trump by over 146,000 (and still counting). In case you’re a Republican, 146,000 is greater than 10,000.

In Pennsylvania, Trump beat Clinton by 46,765. In 2020 in Pennsylvania, Biden beat Trump by over 48,000 (and still counting). In case you’re a Republican, 48,000 is more than 46,000. Now, Trump is suing to overturn the election in Pennsylvania.

As the counting continues, Biden is heading for a 306 electoral vote win. That’s the exact same amount Trump won with in 2016. How are they going to win the presidency by overturning one state without any actual evidence of election fraud? They would need to overturn more than one state. Maybe they can do it in Georgia where the two GOP senators are calling for their own Republican Secretary of State to resign because they don’t like that his count shows Donald Trump is losing.

This is banana republic type shit here, people. This is a coup attempt. Maybe people like Pompeo are just trying to appease Trump for now. Maybe Pompeo is a coward. He wants to appease Trump’s base for when he runs for the Senate in Kansas or even for the presidency in 2024, if Trump doesn’t. Or maybe, he’s afraid of being fired two months before he’s scheduled to lose his job. Trump is already lashing out and firing people.

Maybe people like Mitch McConnell, John Kennedy (not the good one), Lindsey Graham, Marco Rubio, Thom Tillis, and Ted Cruz are all just big, fat ass kissers. Or…they’re trying to steal an election and are engaging in a coup.

I predicted before the election that Joe Biden would win… but I did not predict he’d take the White House because I was afraid the Republicans would try to steal the election. Even before the election, Trump said the only way he could lose was if there was corruption and voter fraud. Boy, did I call it or did I call it?

We know this about Trump supporters: They are all cowards. They have made their party into one of a cult. They put one man before their nation. They are putting one man before democracy. They don’t care if they turn our democracy into a dictatorship.

The Trump administration will NOT legally continue, but the resistance must.

and, as we all suspected…

#drumpf is refusing to concede, has directed the attorney general william barr to “investigate substantial evidence of voter fraud” (despite the fact that their IS NO evidence of voter fraud), and is refusing to turn things over to a transition team. mitch mconnell and mike pompeo have both stated that they support a second #drumpf term. he’s fired a whole bunch of people within the last 48 hours, including directors at the pentagon and the FBI, and replaced them with “loyalists”. 😒

this despite the fact that biden won the popular vote with 50.8%, compared to #drumpf’s 47.5%, and is projected to win the electoral vote with 306, which is the largest difference since the 1930s.

biden says he’s “dissapointed”, but doesn’t think legal action will be necessary. 😒

if this isn’t a blatant attempt at a coup, i don’t know what is. if this happened in any other country, the US would send in the marines to ensure a democratic government emerged. 🤬

we’re going to have to drag him out of the white house by his heels, kicking and screaming like a child having a temper tantrum. 😒

p.s. (he’s NOT the president of the united states, and never has been.) 😒

and then, there’s also this:

so…

the fence is (allegedly) being fixed on thursday, by the guy who is the friend of the neighbour who is (still) being a dick about paying for the fence, despite the fact that the dead tree which destroyed it was on his property. 😒

the guy who is (allegedly) fixing the fence has already run down a whole list of (bogus) complaints he had about the current fence — i get the impression that he’s not particularly impressed with the quality or consistency of the fence materials, despite the fact that we had the fence made by a different company than the one which made the gates, and that the whole thing was built during the peak of the first round of COVID…

but i get the very strong impression that the guy is going to do everything possible to get away with doing a halfway job and begging off, never to be heard from again, which is why i’m going to be keeping an eye on the work progress, when it happens. 😒

election day is (finally) tomorrow. in spite of the fact that he was impeached, we managed to survive (barely) four years of #drumpf, and i’m not sure, even now, that we’re going to vote him out tomorrow… and, even if we do, i’m even less sure that he’ll leave without making a BIG fuss, and/or flagrantly cheating… and even if we do manage to eject him into the sun, there’s going to be A LOT of #MAGA #chuds who will be stubbornly unwilling to accept it, and even if we are actually able to eject him into the sun, they’re not going to be so “easy” to deal with, nor will they just “go away”, once the solar ejecting has actually been accomplished.

i keep saying it’ll take us at least a hundred years to recover from #drumpf, and i’m not sure we have a hundred years left, even if we do, miraculously, make him and his cronies just vanish.

in other news, i made a new page for the Incense Of The Month Club, but i can’t figure out how to put the background image on it that i want, so it’s not linked anywhere, yet. i bought a 1½” diameter button press (because why not), and now i’ve got to round up some civic organisations which want buttons for some campaign or something.

also, i never heard back from kent.

good. 😒

1½" diameter buttons
1½” diameter buttons
pins & buttons
pins & buttons

then, on the other hand, there’s moe…

moe has added the “famous author” rôle to her ever expanding list of hats, since her (groundbreaking) book on animal behaviour came out. she’s been travelling, on average, once a month, to various different conventions and conferences, plugging her book and her “new” way of treating animals… which is, basically, “do unto others as you would have them do to you”, with modern branding.

but this whole COVID19 pandemic has put a wrench into the works, and all of the conferences at which she was scheduled to speak for the next 6 months cancelled, which left her with a significant gap in her income. never one to be put down for long, she and a few friends (all of whom had never done this before) decided that they were going to put on a virtual veterinary conference.

seems logical, right?

and, literally, EVERYBODY she talked to about this idea was in favour of it, to the point where she has major corporations paying for top-level speakers so that they can get a plug in the program. and when i say “top-level”, i mean, for example, monique got a call, out of the blue, from Temple Grandin, who had heard about her idea and wanted to help.

all this happened around the middle of march.

the virtual veterinary conference started today. moe is giving 4 hours of talks, as well as handling IT problems — they had an app built for the conference. the developers said they could easily handle 10,000 end users. the conference currently has just over 700 users and systems are blowing up EVERYWHERE. they estimate that 25% of registered users can’t login to see the conference live (they’ll have access to recorded content, so it’s not an entire loss, but…). fortunately, moe says all the presenters can log in, so the stuff will get recorded, but she also says that the developers’ solution to this was to “reschedule for next week”, which IS NOT going to happen with a conference that is already in progress

so, it’s almost as though moe has gone away for the weekend, even though she’s right across the hall from me, at this very moment.

UPDATE: it’s now 2:30 pm, all the speakers have spoken for today (because they’re on eastern standard time), and they got off to a rocky start, but it got better, and they were able to do the second half of the show without a hitch.

tomorrow moe gets to be temple grandin’s “wing man”… 👍👍👍‼‼

snerk…

in other news, i just purchased YakBoy dot net, which was previously owned by some random person in japan, and before that, was owned by my younger (by 10 years) brother, the former co-author of the “Seattle Geekly” podcast, and a registered nurse…

i wonder how long it’s going to be before i receive a “cease and desist” order, or something like that, and have him demand that i return his “intellectual property”… 🤣🤪

🤬

#drumpf is still “winning”… demolishing sacred native burial grounds and tossing 70 million people off of SSI and SSDI so that he can build his ill-fated wall; dr. stabby, cruella devos, and a whole range of people who have never done anything in government being appointed to important positions of power in the government; endless war in the middle east; not taking a presidential salary, but taking more golf excursions than the past 4 presidents COMBINED, despite a campaign promise that he wasn’t going to play golf; muslim ban; climate-change; etc., etc., etc., etc., ETC…. 😒

but all we hear about, TODAY, is the fact that flerfer “Mad” Mike Hughes died in yet another attempt to take his home-made, steam-powered rocket up to 5000 feet so that he could photograph the “lack of curvature”…

as though the news that some crazy person dying while trying to prove the impossible is, somehow, more important news than the distaster immediately destroying the planet… 🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

anhedonia… 😒

i’ve been “sick” for a week. i was actually SICK for two days, starting last thursday. friday i didn’t make it upright, except to vomit, but by saturday i was feeling well enough that i did the last weekend of the panto without too much difficulty. monique got sick on sunday, and she and i have been trading a low-level “sickness” back and forth ever since. one of monique’s co-workers got an especially virulent strain of pink-eye a couple days ago, so the probability is better than normal that all of the rest of us are going to get pink-eye eventually.

#drumpf assassinated the number three guy in iran, with no “approval” or prior warning, a couple days ago, which, once again, brings us to the brink of world war three. he’s been impeached, but not convicted of anything, and probably won’t be, because the body which is supposed to convict him is controlled by the republican’ts, all of whom think he’s doing a swell job. 😒 55% of americans think his actions put american lives in danger, but he’s using it as a campaign talking point, and there’s a good chance, at this point, that he will be re-“elected” for a second term. 😠👎

and that’s not to mention the millions of people who no longer have insurance, nor the disabled people (which includes me) who will no longer have SSDI when his schemes take effect… he’s asked for, and gotten more money for his wall, and even more money for “defense”, but we “don’t have enough money” for health care and education.

meanwhile, the wall in the back of our closet has sprung a leak, which means that a lot of our “formal” and “costume” clothes are now wet — possibly ruined — and we’ve had a contractor out to give us an estimate (and another one tomorrow, alledgedly), but it has been snowing, on and off, since last night, which means that whatever repairs HAVE TO BE made, will PROBABLY NOT be made until… i don’t know, spring, or some time… 😒

i’m sick.

i’m sick of life. 😒

i wish it would end. 👎

calm… i hope no storm…

the past three full days now, i have gotten SIGNIFICANTLY less spam than normal… like, normally i’ll get anywhere from two to six DOZEN spam messages a day, and, since saturday, i have gotten, maybe two dozen total

i’ve been blocking ranges of IP addresses in argentina and peru and china and india and denmark and kazakhstan and iran and lithuania and brazil and germany and LOTS of ranges for russia, and luxembourg and vietnam and turkey and indonesia and romania and the UK and georgia (the country, not the state in the united states), and nigeria and egypt and cambodia and myanmar (and that’s only up to the 45.0.0.0/8 range) like a mad fiend, for about two months prior to saturday… and all of those places are places from which i have never received email that was not spam…

literally, i’ve been blocking JUST ranges connected with the 1LfYcbCsssB2niF3VWRBTVZFExzsweyPGQ “bitcoin porn sextortion” scam since october 4th. 🤬

maybe i’ve finally caught up with the script. i’ve got 1,043 filter rules, and a fair portion of them are IP ranges…

but it feels weird… nobody has complained that they’re not getting important emails, and the false positives that have been coming through are usually either dealt with by changing “contains” to “matches regex”, or by deleting rules that i don’t need any longer… like the one for the .mp TLD, which was giving me false positives all the time because of mailchi.mp, which, while spammy, is not universally spammy, and, as far as i can tell, is the only NON-spammy use of the .mp TLD… but i decided that, instead of figuring out how to rule out legitimate use of a spammy TLD, i just started banning the countries that the spam was coming from…

but it feels weird… i’ve been on edge for a couple of days now, and i’m pretty sure it’s directly related to my relationship with the computer and the ‘net… 😒

but not entirely related… i had a pair of blue sunglasses that i got before i went to oregon to busk, a few months ago, and i lost them about a week ago. since then i’ve been losing a whole bunch of other things — keys, tools, credit cards, that sort of thing — and i’ve been finding them again, usually in the same day, sometimes within the same 15 minutes or so… but i haven’t been able to find my sunglasses, and it PISSES ME OFF because the reason i got them, primarily, was to help aleviate some of my depression, and they have worked ADMIRABLY for that purpose… and i remember thinking, if i put them… wherever it was that i put them… 😕 and left them there for too long, i would probably not remember where they were, the next time i looked for them… 😒

it’s possible that they’re somewhere around the house, but i’ve looked at least three times in every place i can think of, and quite a few that i couldn’t have thought of in a long time, and have nothing to show for it except a much cleaner house. they’re not in the car, as far as i can tell, nor are they in my tuba case, or my tuba bag.

moe is going away for a few days — travelling for stuff related to her book — starting friday, which means that i won’t be able to go busking. and then panto starts (shudder) saturday: two shows, and two shows on sunday, which means that i won’t even be here to take care of the pets for significant portions of both days… fortunately, i’m picking her up at the airport after sunday’s shows are over.

and, on the unicycle side of things, i think i am actually learning to ride the unicycle… i have been consistently riding, in a “more-or-less” controlled fashion, in a marginally straight line, without falling over, half to three-quarters of the way across the gym, for two weeks now. and, i just got “certified” to come in and use the gym for practicing unicycle on days that we’re not having class, so i actually have a place to practice.

i should update this thing again…

the most recent thing is that i have “volunteered” to help make the artwork that is going to be used for this year’s panto: the program cover, poster, postcard and banner. i put “volunteered” in quotation marks because it was presented as a fairly straightforward job that has turned into a nightmare of emails between me and norma, on one side, and leah and the steering committee — who pretty much don’t know what they’re talking about — on the other side… which i would very definitely NOT have “volunteered” for, if i had known about it ahead of time.

it started with me and norma. we, plus mimi, produced the artwork for last year’s panto (to great success, i might add), and we started out to make it largely the same…

then leah got involved. leah is the “publicity manager” this year, and she has very specific — if not outrageously wrong — ideas about how the artwork should appear. leah also set a deadline of october 3rd for all of this to be done, so that i could send it to the printer so that we could have posters and postcards by the first week of october.

on the first round of feedback in which leah was involved (third week of september), one of her “suggestions” was

Remove the Fremont Players website and keep the brown paper tickets (if people google us, they will find our web site)

⁉⁉⁉⁉⁉🤨🤦

she also wanted me to remove the fremont players’ graphic logo, remove the year, reduce the amount of text, and “integrate other stylistic suggestions from the steering committee”, who, like i said before, have NO CLUE what they’re talking about.

so, norma and i ignored about 90% of their suggestions, did what we could to placate leah (including taking the graphic logo off the front of the postcard and putting it on the back, faded behind the text so it’s “not noticible”, and, after a few more “back-and-forths” which didn’t include leah, we came up with what we thought was finished artwork.

meanwhile, on october 1st, leah wrote to me, asking how much it would cost — PER POSTER — to print them. this is a very complex question, which has a different answer based on whether you are using a small, local print shop (like the kind i worked in for 20+ years) or a large, nation wide printing house (like the kind i use these days), and if you are using a large, nation wide printing house, how much posters cost depends on whether you want a small number or a large number.

i tried to explain this to leah, but she was more concerned with the fact that

If I’m reading this correctly, 150 posters cost $210 but 250 posters cost only $40 more and ordering 4000 postcards is $465 but 5000 is $125 cheaper??

to which i responded “that’s right.”

i know, it’s weird, but it’s how large, nation wide printing houses do business, and it appears to work for them. you can’t get different specific-size jobs unless you’re willing to pay more than you would if you get an amount that the printers produce, which is usually more than you want, but “per poster” it comes in WAY cheaper than if you get a different, specific-size job.

so, she approved the artwork on october 2nd, and on october 3rd, she said that i should hold off on contacting the printer, because she wanted to see if it was possible to get an exact size job for a cheaper price.

to which i responded

yes, you can probably get cheaper prices from somewhere else, but keep in mind the quality of the printing i provided last year: posters on 100lb gloss stock, and postcards on 16pt gloss stock with UV coating. i’m pretty sure you’re not going to get anywhere close to the same quality anywhere else, for anything close to the prices i have quoted.

which was ignored… 🤦

a couple of days later, she wrote asking for the high res files, because she had found a “digital printer” (read “photocopy shop”) who would do EXACTLY the size job she wanted for half the price (on much lower quality paper, but she doesn’t know the difference).

so i uploaded them to dropbox, and washed my hands of the whole deal. 😒

it turns out that she had something printed — i still don’t know whether or not she used the correct files (if i had actually been there, and she had shown up with printing from the wrong files, i would have walked out and never gone back… 😒), but my guess is that either she didn’t use the correct files, or she whipped something together in microsoft publisher (or something like that) and used that instead.

then, on october 9th, i get a request for more changes to the postcard. apparently, now, they actually want the date on the front of the card.

i respond by telling maque that they have the high res versions of the artwork, and that they are welcome to make whatever changes they like to the card, BY THEMSELVES, because i am done with this job, and there is a very good likelyhood that i will not be available to “help” again next year, or going forward, because i felt like it was too much work for too little actual gain.

then, yesterday, i get a call from chris huson. he wants to meet me to discuss why i am so upset with the printing process. actually, he SAYS he wants to “discuss further changes” to the postcard, but i nip that in the bud right away.

i explain exactly what i (and mimi and norma) did, and exactly what leah did. i show him emails from leah. i show him the finished artwork — which he says doesn’t look like what leah had printed. i explain about the confusing pricing, and the quality differences, and how none of this seemed to make a difference to leah.

it turns out that leah actually asked chris to take over managing the artwork portion of the job. given what chris already knew about leah, and about the fact that i was upset about the way this whole thing was working out — AND because chris is on the steering committee AND the board of directors, he made the executive decision to take over managing the production of the artwork.

he’s coming over tomorrow to finalise the “already finalised” artwork, to talk about run amounts, and the schedule of when we might have things.

——

from the time i was born until the time i finally escaped my parents’ house, when i was 20 or so, the primary message i received, over and over, was that i was not good enough, that i would never BE good enough, and that, unless i worked VERY hard at “being normal”, nobody would ever like me.

it wasn’t always very subtle, but that was the underlying message, regardless of what i did: they said they were “proud of me” when i won awards, but they refused to do anything to help me win more awards, and shot me down every time i thought i might be able to succeed at doing… pretty much anything…

and when i wasn’t winning awards for playing trombone, or doing magic shows, i didn’t even have a name: i was “the crummy child”. oldest by 6 years of four children, the other three of whom were born two years apart, starting when i was 6, then 8, then 10, when they got old enough to realise what was happening, my siblings called me “the crummy child” as well. when my first younger sister was born, i quickly faded into the background. after that, the only times anybody noticed me was when i was winning awards or when i was getting into trouble.

——

this whole business of working with leah brought all that back in one fell swoop: regardless of how good the art was, it wasn’t good enough. 😠

it has begun to be worked out, now that chris is more involved than he was before, but i’m still quite shaken, and stirred up (at the same time) by this whole fiasco.

seriously…

i put a notice on hybrid elephant’s contact form, a few months ago:

PLEASE NOTE: This contact form is solely for the use of Hybrid Elephant customers who need to get in contact with us. Every message that is sent with this form includes a unique IP address in the header, which identifies the computer from which the message was sent. If you use this form to spam us, all you will accomplish is to put your IP address on the list of IP addresses which are PERMANENTLY BANNED from accessing Hybrid Elephant for any reason. Please DO NOT USE THIS FORM to send us advertisements or solicitations. It WILL NOT WORK! You have been warned!

this morning i received spam from the contact form, which said “my apologies for reaching out cold like this, just trying to see who I can help.”

if you’re really interested in helping, there’s a snail-mail address, AND a phone number posted on the same page as the contact form — which contains the warning mentioned previously. there’s absolutely no reason why you could not have called me on the phone, or written me a snail-mail message, instead of using our contact form SPECIFICALLY for something that i have warned you NOT to use it for.

not only that, but the header indicates that you’re one of those suckers who bought into the spam that has been going around recently, which says that you can send your spam through contact forms, because they’re already approved. i know this because your return address is to a server in scottsdale, arizona, but the message was sent through 105.235.192.0/21, which is located in nigeria. not only that, but the domain name you registered is hosted by microsoft, and registered at godaddy, both of which are known, notorious spam havens, despite what they may say in their advertisements… so your domain name also goes into my spam filter.

congratulations, spammer: you have successfully participated in BLOCKING yourself, your domain, and a /21 range (2,048 individual IP addresses) in nigeria. you will never again be able to access any of my domains, for any reason, any email that you send to me will go unread, and there is absolutely NO WAY i will ever use your “instagram marketing” service… primarily because i do not now, and never have had an instagram account, and i do not intend to open one in the future.

which you could have found out just as easily over the telephone, and you wouldn’t have blocked yourself. spam doesn’t work. give it up.

🤬

bleah…

i’ve been under the attack of anhedonia and depression. my mushrooms have lost their potency: the last time i tried, i took 6 of them and they had, essentially, no effect at all. i connected with a person at SACBO — ranger’s connection — but she is only one step closer to the source… although she did mention that starter kits are available on ebay, and that they practically grow themselves, so that’s worth looking into.

part of the reason i have been so depressed is because of what i call the “political situation”: that is, drumpf and his latest atrocities. it just keeps on getting worse, and, when i think there’s no way he can get any worse, he blows the world away with the magnitude of his atrocities… and his republicon base of supporters get upset about a black disney princess and a pair of nike sneakers, but totally ignore the concentration camps and the gestapo Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids, not to mention the totally inept people, including his own children, he’s put in charge of such things as education, housing, healthcare and the environment. it’s literally going to take us 100 years JUST to fix his fuckups, and that’s not taking into account the fact that the world is already in a crisis mode. it’s almost as though everything i’ve ever fought for throughout my entire life has been eliminated by this orange babboon in less than 3 years, and replaced with climate-change deniers, corporate stooges, forced-birth and anti-vax controversies, and so-called “christian” love, which is only for the so-called “christians”.

drumpf spent $92 million, which he appropriated from the national parks department (🤬), on a “military parade” in washington DC, complete with tanks and a flyover by the blue angels and “airforce one” — which, of course, wasn’t “airforce one” because the #SCROTUS was on the ground, observing the flyover… and the tanks were stationary, because, apparently, if they had moving tanks, they would have destroyed the streets and damaged the lincoln memorial… but the only people who could view this were his donors, because everyone else had to pay to get in… and then it rained, HARD and everything was postponed. the photos and videos i’ve seen show a very few thoroughly wet people and drumpf giving a long, boring, confusing speech that one writer i read compared to having been written by artificial intelligence, and a retired admiral said that it was on the level of an 8th grade history lesson… and the live video feeds from the top of the washington memorial, and the lincoln memorial were inexplicably shut down and removed from the whitehouse dot gov address, apparently to cover up how few people actually attended this debacle.

so, basically, we, the american people, threw away $92,000,000,000 on an egotistical, childish, boorish, dictator-emulating orange rapist with the IQ of half a rock, instead of addressing the concentration camps, or the homeless issue, or the healthcare issue, or… 🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

as can be well imagined, despite my love for exploding things, i take little interest in such activities in celebration of this country, this year… which is, also, at least partially, because of the fact that we now have a dog who is totally terrified of fireworks, AND a next-door neighbour who is prone to setting off a ton of fireworks which ignite their lawn, and other suchlike wonderful things. 😒

OCF is 5 days away, and i’m hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst. by this time, we’ve usually had one run through, and have some rough idea of how long the show will be. this year, we’re nowhere close to that, despite the fact that we started out with a working script, which we created 15 years ago, when we did this show (Jack And The Beanstalk) the last time. and we’re still missing two songs, one of which is probably not going to make it into the show for OCF.

and, on top of everything else, MAD magazine is shutting down! PBLFLLT!! 😠

The PHBFH 😱

so, i asked liz, who has been connected with the management for folklife for decades, if she could tell me who to contact regarding the lady in the yellow dress.

it turns out that she knows her, vaguely… she (the lady in the yellow dress) is connected to a group of balkan dancers in the seattle area, and she might be married to a balkan accordion player. liz said that she might have even gone to the place of residence for the lady in the yellow dress.

i showed her a picture of the face of the PHBFH, and she confirmed that it was definitely the same person as the lady in the yellow dress.

she’s discretely going to find out more information and get back to me.

on the one hand, it will be good, particularly for ezra, to find out exactly what happened to his mother: the last time he heard anything was at least 3 and possibly more than 5 years ago, when she was being discharged from the state mental institution (she refused to take the medications that made her remotely sane). the doctors called him to find out if he wanted to take care of her. when he said he couldn’t, that was the last time anyone that i know of heard from her.

on the other hand… it’s the PHBFH… 😱

Margaret McKibben
Margaret McKibben
ETA: it turns out the lady liz knows is someone named margaret mckibben, and not the PHBFH… although they look and behave DISTURBINGLY… ALARMINGLY similar. 😕

the PHBFH

i saw someone who i believe to be the PHBFH today, at 11:41 am at the folklife festival, at the seattle centergrounds.

190526 The PHBFH
190526 The PHBFH

i’m not 100% sure it’s her, but i’m about 98% sure. i walked past her, on my way to play at the mural amphitheatre, and recognised her immediately. i’m not sure if she recognised me immediately, but when i tried to work my way around to a point where i could take a better picture, she recognised me and ran away, which adds to the probability that it was her. also she did a little ballet pose before she disappeared around a corner, which further adds to the probability that it was her.

when i texted the photo to ezra, he said that he wasn’t able to tell for sure, but that it looked “like her style”. he also said that it is unusual for her to be in the city without showing up at ezra’s home… or in bellingham… i also noticed that she was wearing what looked like leather boots, which is uncharacteristic for the PHBFH that i know, but not entirely out of the question, since it has been almost 30 years since i’ve actually seen her.

it was creepy seeing her… 😱

but she looked healthy, strong, and happy, which makes me glad.

dead people

andrew “sketch” hare 190404
kenyth freeman 190429
simon neale 190509

in the past 5 weeks, i’ve lost 3 friends. 😢

the next person to die should be me.

really.

i have a condition that kills half of the people who have it, and leaves half of the remainder SEVERELY brain damaged, but, for some reason, i’m doing okay. 😕

i need it. i deserve it. i’ve already cheated death once. i’m so totally fed up with being alive at this point… WHY is it them, and not me? 🤬

I can imagine myself on my death-bed, spent utterly with lust to touch the next world, like a boy asking for his first kiss from a woman.
     — Aleister Crowley, October 12, 1875 – December 1, 1947

this guy looks like me…

Young O and salamandir, 040619
Young O and salamandir, 040619
i’ve known about this guy for a while: his name is Howard Tayler, he is the author of the web-comic Schlock Mercenary, and he looks like me… or i look like him, or something like that.

originally, it was pointed out that i looked like him when i posted a (now deleted, but reproduced here) photo here, in january, 2006, and when i sent the same photo to howard, he said that it looked similar enough to him that he started going through his photos, trying to figure out where it was taken.

Howard Tayler
Howard Tayler
170307 burlesque show at the substation in ballard
170307 burlesque show at the substation in ballard

eventually he shaved his beard, and we didn’t look so similar any longer.

but, recently, he’s either grown a beard again, or has a very accomplished makeup artist that has fashioned an appliance for him, because, once again, we look similar — except now he looks even more like me… in fact, i get the impression that he may be trying to look like me!

it is very creepy…

Howard Tayler
Howard Tayler
salamandir, 180502
salamandir, 180502

here’s a pingback to his blog. maybe, he will have something to say about this odd coincidence.

No Revolution

No Revolution
by José Tirado

There will be no revolution so long as Netflix remains cheap,
No revolution while the Super Bowl continues,
And the bombs killing kids in Yemen get yawns.
There will be no revolution today,
Or tomorrow, since there is a big sale up the street,
And people are camping out the night before.
There will be no revolution because people are weary
And besides, Game of Thrones is ending
And Avengers: Endgame has taken all my hope quotient for this year.
There will be no revolution while people work 2 jobs
But can´t afford homes in their cities
And the countryside is too poisoned, too addled with meth
To worry about that stuff.
There will be no revolution so long as Teen Vogue has better articles
Than the New York Times.

There will be no revolution that poses for selfies.
There will be no revolution with kitten pictures.
There will be no revolution on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday as those are “holy” days.
There will be no revolution on Mondays because that would be asking too much.
There will be no revolution on Wednesdays because that´s hump day and people are
Getting excited for the weekend.
There will be no revolution while the Earth cooks since
If the “earth dying is not inspiration enough”
We´re fucked anyway.

There will be no revolution since guillotine makers are out of fashion
And nobody is angry enough to hold hands.
There will be no revolution now since Biden jumped in the race
And will probably take the word with him
Leaving Bernie fuming.
There will be no revolution because paying bills takes more of our time than reading.
There will be no revolution because Coachella with Bey is more riveting than
Talking to our neighbors.
There will be no revolution because no one has neighbors anymore.

There will be no revolution because the stars aren´t aligned for it.
There will be no revolution because Fox can´t say the word.
There will be no revolution at night because most people are too tired to drive.
There will be no revolution at noon because the days are getting hotter.
There will be no revolution since apparently “America is great again.”
There will be no revolution since no one saw the preview or billboards
Or heard anything on their morning drive to work.
There will be no revolution because the pamphlets aren’t printed in Spanish.
There will be no revolution while our guns are turned on each other.
There will be no revolution since “they” have bigger guns.
There will be no revolution since getting hurt would be too expensive
And my co-pay doesn´t cover “wounds inflicted in liberation struggles. “

There will be no revolution since many are too busy looking for 80% work.
There will be no revolution once we get 15$ an hour.
There will be no revolution since the rich tell us there is no need for one.
There will be no revolution because the economy is booming.
There will be no revolution since the only boom in our economy
Are bomb makers and bunker builders.

There will be no revolution since Jesus is coming anyway so it won´t matter.
There will be no revolution on Christmas, Hanukah, Eid or any other big holiday
Since people will be buying bullet-proof vests and hiring security
So they can pray safely to a compassionate God
To please, take away the need for a revolution.

oy! 😖

the continuing saga of the mailing list fiasco has reached a new plateau:

so, it started out that one of the subscribers to the list sent a message to the list that didn’t go through, for some unknown reason (demons).

when his message didn’t go through IMMEDIATELY — as he was used to them doing — he started looking around for other addresses, and he found two of them. one goes to the list owner, and one is a “machine only” address that sends bounce notices to the owner. it is not for sending email TO, and it is definitely not for sending mail to when your message doesn’t go through, because that triggers the MTA on the user end to blacklist your message.

i found out about this whole fiasco about 6 hours into it, when he sent mail to my personal address, asking me if there was something wrong. i noticed that he had sent mail to the machine-only address, and got blacklisted by micro$awful, so i wrote to the host provider to see if there was something that could be done to reverse the problem.

the host provider’s response was to accuse me (and my mailing list) of sending spam, and they have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to sending spam. 😒

they generously offered to set me up with a new IP address instead of arbitrarily closing my account, but the new IP address they gave me didn’t have a PTR (pointer) record, or a RDNS (Reverse DNS) record, which only made the machine that controls the email list mad, because usual mailing lists have a PTR and a RDNS record, and the end result was that i was blacklisted by a number of services with which i have been exchanging emails without a problem for years.

fortunately, these other services were ones for which i could submit delisting requests myself, which takes the host provider and their sensitivity about spam and spammers out of the loop.

nevertheless, i started losing patience, and i might have said some things in my communications with the host provider which ended up making things a whole lot worse, ending up with yesterday, when they asked me to move my web sites to a different host provider immediately.

at EXACTLY THE SAME TIME, the PTR and RDNS records that they installed on my new IP address took effect, which meant that i can no longer send email from my local email client, because it’s not the same server that my VPN has been talking to for more than a year, and i lost it. i didn’t actually curse at them, but i did everything but that.

while i was in the process of figuring out that it was my VPN that was my primary problem, i had, simultaneously, to explain the mistake to the guy who sent the original message, re-assure the members of the mailing list who were trying — and failing — to send messages to the list that they weren’t actually the problem, despite the fact that their email addresses were not interacting correctly with the mailing list, and fend off the more and more insistent demands that i leave, immediately, from the host provider.

long story short, i didn’t sleep very well last night. 😠

at about 3:30 this morning, i finally wrote a letter to macque, saying that i was no longer able to host the web sites he has me hosting, i was no longer able to maintain the mailing list, and that i was retiring from the hosting business.

then i checked, once again, with micro$awful, and determined that I HADN’T ACTUALLY BEEN BLACKLISTED AT ALL!

the WHOLE THING had been caused by “demons” in the machine! 😖

and, to top things all off, we’re scheduled to go to the beach for a week, starting monday, which meant that, if i was going to move, i would have to find a new host and give them the information they need to move my web sites in 3 days, or wait a week, and do the same thing when i got back from vacation. both of these options made going on vacation TO BEGIN WITH not a very exciting prospect, and i was getting severely depressed about it.

and, to put the cherry on top, it turns out that sketch, the drummer for Snake Suspenderz, died yesterday, which made me even more depressed… primarily because he, being dead, didn’t have to worry about all the CRAP that has been going on in the world, while i, being not dead, had to deal with seven times MORE CRAP and had no say in the matter, whatsoever.

then, things started to get better… kind of…

the first thing that happened is that, when i told them that i would be moving my web site in two weeks, that micro$awful hadn’t really blacklisted my IP address, and that i had dumped the client that had caused the whole fiasco, they let up a little bit, and allowed that, since i had paid access until july, that i could stay until then. with a bit more discussion back and forth, they relented even further, and allowed me to keep my web sites where they are.

but i’m still giving up being a host provider for people who don’t know how it works, because it’s WAY too stressful.

so, in the end, i can go on vacation without having to worry about internet SHIT, either while i am on vacation, or after i get home; i will no longer have to deal with people who don’t know doing things that they shouldn’t do and feeling awful about it afterwards, and i won’t ACTUALLY have to move my web sites that aren’t going away anyway (which is an entirely different ball of wax)…

but sketch is still dead, which means that, either, Snake Suspenderz will break up, or that we will find a new drummer… neither of which are very attractive alternatives at this point.

hrmph!

i am done with the moisture festival for another year: 13 shares. we’ll see what a share costs in about a month, but i’m not holding my breath.

during the fremont phil part of the run, i broke my tuba: the mouthpiece receiver came loose, which made playing the instrument sort of interesting, but not absolutely impossible, which is why i took it to the repair shop today, instead of when it happened.

i’m still recovering from the flu. i’ve got a persistent cough which, according to what i’ve read recently, may never go away, although it seems to be, so i don’t know yet.

and, while i was busy with the moisture festival, a subscriber to one of the mailing lists i maintain, who has an email address at micro$awful, unknowingly sent email to the wrong address, and got the mailing list blacklisted from sending to addresses at micro$awful. the host provider’s response to this was to believe micro$awful, and to say that if i don’t move the mailing list to a third-party, commercial SMTP provider, that they were going to refuse to provide service to me any longer. i don’t want to do that, but i am running out of other choices very quickly, and informing micro$awful that their automated blacklister made a mistake is almost impossible. i’m getting really tired of dealing with other peoples’ screw-ups, and, once again, am debating whether or not to just toss all of my “web clients” except for my wife, and just deal with my own domains. it would be so much easier than explaining stuff to people who don’t understand, who don’t pay attention, and who do continue to do the stuff that makes problems happen which i can’t fix.

now that the moisture festival is over, i’ve got a band-mate’s saxophone to work on for a couple days, and moe and i are going to the beach in a week or so. hopefully that will give me the chance to get back to normal for a while. 😒

Pat Robertson’s Weird Way of Doing Sex

pat robertson should not be allowed to broadcast his hate on national television. it astounds me that he still has a platform… although it astounds me that people still go to church, so maybe i’m the crazy one here… although i would much rather be considered “crazy” than i would to convert to that sex-crazed mainiac’s way of thinking. seriously, i don’t understand why HOMOSEXUALS having sex the way they do threatens anybody, and certainly not to the depths of the fabric of society. the fact is, whether pat robertson likes it or not, people have been “doing sex” the “weird way” since long before pat robertson was around, and they’re not likely to go away just because pat robertson and his ilk somehow get a law passed. people like him would do well to pay attention when someone like, oh, i don’t know, Jesus Christ, maybe, says “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”

it makes me wonder about the beam in pat robertson’s eye, particularly since he seems to be obsessed with “weird” ways of having sex. it makes me think that he might not be getting enough, himself. 😒

Pat Robertson’s Weird Way of Doing Sex
by Rev. Dr. Guido Super DeLuxe, 190226
download here