Things That Amuse Me

I’m about to get busy again over the next couple of weeks, and also I’m thinking about NaNo-ing again this year, which ideally means long days of productive enterprise, not procrastinating on the internet. But you know me, I don’t know how to quit you.

If I were a good writer, I’d spend my mornings meditating, eating whole grain porridge and doing yoga, priming myself for a day of composing Deep Thoughts into emotionally resonant and relevant prose. Instead I choke down coffee and get pissed off about the latest outrage du jour, which I promptly vomit into blog rants. This is not the recipe for a happy, well adjusted life.

We shall see.

In the meantime, here are a couple of things which caught my attention:

A new program in Bay Minette, Alabama will let non-violent offenders choose between going to church every Sunday for a year, or spending time in jail and paying a fine. The police chief says the program does not violate separation of church and state because,

it allows the offender to choose church or jail…and the church of their choice.

Attending church is the same as going to jail? I know some 12-year-olds who agree with that. Snort.

Clearly this doesn’t pass Constitutional muster. For one thing, the article explains that 56 churches have signed up for the program. If you have to attend a church which has signed up for the program then you really can’t attend the church of your choice, can you? There’s also the question of whether mosques, covens, synagogues, atheists’ discussion groups, drumming circles, Pastafarian meetings, etc. qualify as “churches.”

What I’m curious about is this belief that attending church somehow inoculates a person against committing crime. It’s not as though church-going folk are any less likely to cheat, steal, do drugs, etc. than the rest of the population. I think it’s kind of sad that anyone is deluded enough to think otherwise.

• Toby Keith is in favor of raising taxes on millionaires and views it as one’s patriotic duty, which I think is exactly right:

“I don’t know, but I expect the wealthy to write a check ’cause it’s as bad as it’s ever been,” the Oklahoma-born Keith said. “It would be unpatriotic not to try to save the country. I’m sure people will bitch about it, but if it meant we get to operate in this country and live here another day, then so be it.

“One way or another, before it’s over they’re gonna have to come and take big money from the earners and big corporations to save the country. I’m sure that everybody that has a patriotic cell in their system will say, ‘If it’s gotta be done, it’s gotta be done.’ I’d rather live here and not have as much money than live anywhere else and have twice as much.”

Amen to that, Toby Keith. And I have to say, Republicans: if you’ve lost Toby Keith then you’ve lost America. Quit yer bitchin’ and moanin’ about paying taxes, just shut up and do it. Shit needs to be paid for.

• The “terminally paranoid, crackpot head ogre at the NRA” Wayne LaPierre says even though it may not look like Obama is trying to steal your guns, he’s just trying to lull everyone into a false sense of security before swooping down and stealing your guns!

“Obama himself is no fool. So when he got elected, they concocted a scheme to stay away from the gun issue, lull gun owners to sleep and play us for fools in 2012. Well, gun owners are not fools and we are not fooled,” La Pierre declared.

Really! They’re not fools so stop laughing, you guys! It’s all a huge plot by that crafty Obama! Also, the U.N. and shut up, that’s why!

• What do the people want? Legalization of marijuana! When do they want it? Now!

I’m not holding my breath on this one. Umm … no pun intended.


Filed under gun control, marijuana, music and politics, religion, taxes

8 responses to “Things That Amuse Me

  1. Kathleen O'Neill

    I enjoy your comments on Balloon Juice and am glad I followed link to your blog today! I especially appreciatd your depiction of the perfect writer, since I, too, struggle, with that kind of discipline. I’ve concluded, however, that every writer has his/her own process and if it works for him/her, that’s all that matters. I channeled my rage into a satiric play but the crazy I satirized there has moved from a 7 to a Spinal Tap 11 and I’m still trying to metabolize it.

  2. Why I keep coming back to this blog:

    “Instead I choke down coffee and get pissed off about the latest outrage du jour, which I promptly vomit into blog rants. This is not the recipe for a happy, well adjusted life.”

    I channel this state of being up on the Highland Rim, sans blog, regularly.

    Not too long ago you commented in such a piece “I’m over it. Let the bastards burn the damn thing down.” (sorry if that’s inaccurate, I don’t have a citation.)

    I knew exactly what you meant. Oddly that kind of total capitulation seems to have a sort of emotionally liberating effect. As Jimmy Buffet might say “It cleans me out and then I can go on.”

    Yet, in spite of your doubts, you do articulate the issues discussed here very well. Thank you for taking the time to tend to this space.

  3. Thanks, Randy & Kathleen. That kind of camaraderie is why I keep blogging, the futility of my efforts notwithstanding …

  4. Roadmaster1968

    “Instead I choke down coffee and get pissed off about the latest outrage du jour, which I promptly vomit into blog rants. This is not the recipe for a happy, well adjusted life.”

    As the Simpsons used in one episode, “Venting prevents explosions”.

    It’s a lot healthier to have a place to belch angst than to internalize it. People who internalize rage are way less likely to live “happy, well adjusted” lives. This from someone who internalized for the first 35 years of his life.

    Thank you for this blog. It was what helped me get through the ’08 election cycle, something I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do and have any sanity left.

    Keep it coming, and best wishes on the NaNo project.

    P.S. I love how Toby Keith taglined his quote with “So be it”, the very same words Boehner (Boner?) used when asked what about the lives and livelihoods of millions of citizens impacted as a result of the Repugs’ path. My hat is off to Toby.

  5. Travis

    Happy Sunday! I’m adding you to favorites, because I like the cut of your jib, young lady.

  6. ThresherK

    I don’t worry much about celebrities.

    I usually give them two chances to talk about politics before I figure they should just be quiet for the sake of their own reputation. (Ted Nugent or Craig T. Nelson, anyone?)

    That said, good for Toby Keith. Maybe we can get him to go on a speaking tour with Charles “I used to be a Republican before they lost their minds” Barkley (paraphrased, perhaps).

    PS If you think “This is not the recipe for a well adjusted life”, that still puts you miles above those of us who wait for you to this on a daily basis!

  7. Beth

    Thank you for the Toby Keith quotes. And that wonderful kicker line…”if you’ve lost Toby Keith then you’ve lost America.”. I posted it on my Facebook wall to get the attention of my mouth-breathing, tongue-speaking, Obama-hating, country-music-loving, NASCAR-fan friends and family. They pretty much write me off at this point, but they love them some Toby Keith. Maybe once they see that even their favorite C&W tough guy is saying this, they might just sit up and wonder a little bit if maybe, perhaps, they ought to reassess the situation. But don’t bet the farm on it.

  8. I’ll read you as long as you continue to craft compelling narratives out of thickets of minutiae.