The more alert among you may have noticed that I posted absolutely nothing when it was my turn the last time here at The Nudge Wink Report. I would’ve written, but I’ve stumbled onto something that’s bigger than mere humor bloggery.
It began innocently enough. As you may know, I’ve begun brewing beer in earnest, and blogging much less. The inherent risks of moving ten or eleven gallons of very hot, sugary wort without burning or breaking myself were becoming more and more clear. Not wishing to suffer a scalded hernia, I knew it was time to look into getting a pump. As a quick aside, my long-suffering wife has been a saint in tolerating my frequent expenditures for all sorts of Teutonic-sounding gizmos. I’ve learned that it’s always best to at least attempt buying used stuff before whipping out a credit card ordering from BeerBruerAddiction.com.
Thus I found myself on Craigslist looking for a pump. What I uncovered there gave me chills. There’s a massive surplus of used breast pumps out there! We’ve once again created a technology which by its very nature outlives its useful years with virtually no resale value. Is it a stretch (mark) to wonder what may become of all those valves, vacuums and anatomically-designed nipple saddles? The technology just gets cooler – I see your Dick Tracy two-way wrist radio and raise you my noise cancelling head-phones with Bluetooth compatibility and scalp massage function.
Clearly the stage is set for the coming man-versus-robot war for planetary dominance. The discarded breast pumps will likely become foot soldiers in an army which will include Mr. Coffees, non-oscillating oscillating fans, cassette decks and everyone’s last five cell phones. I’m giving up on humor – big loss I know – and using my massive following of readers to sound the alarm. Stop worrying about the jack asses in Washington and focus on the real threat.
I’d write more, but my blender has been sizing me up the entire time I’ve been typing. Better hit “Publish” before the router mysteriously turns off.
It can be a struggle being a curmudgeon, but sometimes they make it awfully easy for me. Take for example the “news” story I recently read which implied that there was some consideration for making gaming an Olympic sport. To clarify, the term “gaming” does not refer to the games which already award medals to the best players/teams in a given sport. Sports such as handball, synchronized swimming and curling are already well established Olympic fare.
The gaming to which the article refers is the video form. In fairness, I should disclose that the “article” to which I am referring is barely more than click bait in its depth and quality. I scanned through two or three paragraphs worth. Someone from the gaming community was going to meet with someone from the Olympic community to talk about the possibility of gaming being recognized as an Olympic sport. It’s possible that this whole subject has been inflated just to rile up old coots like me.
As a kid, I looked up to my Olympic heroes. American athletes went up against villains with consonant-laden names from places like the Soviet Union and East Germany. They played sports that most of us only saw once every four years. Those two countries don’t even exist anymore and one of our old Olympic idols has recently gotten breast implants, a reality show and changed his name to Caitlyn. Excuse me if I get a little pissy that the Olympics may soon be giving out medals for having the high score for Donkey Kong.
Proponents of video games will contend that world champions have incredibly fast reflexes and dexterity. I don’t mean to brag, but I manage to guzzle 20 ounces of steaming coffee every morning, often while behind the wheel in New Jersey commuter traffic. I seldom spill (much of) it on my shirt. While I humbly admit that my reflexes and dexterity must be pretty damn good, I don’t need an award. Going through my workday without a giant brown stain down the front of my shirt is satisfaction enough.
The possibilities raise more questions than answers:
Will there eventually come a day when actual Olympic sports are replaced by their virtual counterparts?
How many times have we heard commentators remark about changing conditions on a ski slope or had asterisks next to finishing times because it was wind aided?
When was the last time you heard someone complain about divots on Wii Golf?
Will the perfection of the digital arenas take the place of the faulty state of the real world?
What’s the point of these questions?
How long will it take before the Uzbekistan team gets exposed for using cheat codes during their historic bronze medal performance in the “Grand Theft Auto – Chump City” consolation match against a tough Netherlands squad?
Perhaps the day will even come when it’s a novelty for athletes to compete on actual grass in actual weather in actual sports. Old farts like me will be long gone by then of course. I hope someone digs this gem out from the bowels of the internet and I get the credit I deserve for this spiffy bit of predicting. No need for a parade or anything, though a posthumous medal would be nice.
Some folks in Iowa recently named a rescued kitten “Firecracker” after veterinarians determined that the feline’s facial injuries had likely been caused by some sort of fireworks. In the interest of blog humor, I won’t get on a soapbox and rail against the sadistic nature of the cretins who perpetrate such acts upon innocent, sweet animals (or even cats for that matter).
Instead, I’d like to question the wisdom of christening a cat with such an awful name. If it was a feisty tabby with an explosive personality and the potential to tear digits to shreds, then a moniker like Firecracker might be an apt handle. Naming this little guy after the explosive that blew his whiskers off seems a bit cruel. On the plus side, since it’s a cat, the name doesn’t really matter as they only respond to the sound of electric can openers anyway.
Naming pets is kind of an egotistical act of futility. In the wild, they manage just fine without any sort of name at all. Thanks to us, African parrots are all called Polly, toucans are Sam, and orange cats are typically Morris. If that zoo had the foresight to not tag that gorilla a nice African sounding Harambe, 20-somethings would have far less to put on their ironic memes and T-shirts. Bored frat boys would not likely popularize the battle cry of “Dicks out for that gorilla they killed in the zoo that time.”
It’s fun to go to the off-leash dog park and listen to frustrated owners calling out the poor choices in names of their disobedient dogs. New dog owners often give their pups awful names, unaware of how often and loudly they’ll have to use it.
“Cumberbatch! Come!….CUMBERBATCH! Come on boy!” That shit never gets old. If my allergies weren’t so bad I’d go spend the morning at the off-leash cat park.
There is a player on the Cavaliers who believes the earth is flat. His name is Kyrie Irving and he was born on the other side of what he must see as giant pizza box in a place called Australia. One might be inclined to imagine that anyone who thinks the earth is flat must have had a sub-par education. Kyrie went to a prestigious prep school in northern New Jersey, and later attended a place called Duke University. Either those two institutions are guilty of not providing their star athletes with the most basic of educations, or Kyrie chose to ignore the astronomy portion of his curriculum. Kyrie may be one of the only Duke alum who thinks the earth is flat, but he’s far from alone.
Perhaps Kyrie and the others only believe in things which they can see with their naked eyes. Despite the likelihood that he’s spent more time at thirty five thousand feet than the rest of us, he’s been unable to see any curvature of the planet below, and therefore, it is flat (except the Rockies, which are bumpy). It’s interesting to wonder why there’s never been a fail video on YouTube featuring someone falling off the edge of the planet, excuse me, I meant plane.
We can assume that Kyrie does not believe in the existence of atoms either. The building blocks of our world, in his mind, are small grains of sand – there’s nothing smaller. Wait until he gets old like me and his eyes go bad, then the smallest particle will be a poppy seed. Photosynthesis? Nope. The wind should also not exist. When the snow is hitting Cleveland sideways off the lake, it’s because gravity must have shifted.
Santa Claus, on the other hand, is very real. He’s easy to spot at any shopping mall around December, and down at the liquor store once in a while buying blackberry brandy and scratch offs.
On a more serious note; is believing the earth is flat any more or less ludicrous than believing that global warming is fake news? Surprisingly, many flat earthers do believe in global warming, they just prefer that you refer to it as Planar Heating
Perhaps you’ve seen the commercial for Movantik, the special medicine for opioid induced constipation. For those of you who might not be in the know, one of the unfortunate side effects of opioid use is constipation. If the advertisements are to be believed, the usual laxative choices are simply inadequate for sphincter-cement due to OxyContin. To put it bluntly, milk of magnesia is no match for milk of the poppy.
A wiser path to regularity for opioid users might be to stop taking them and eat a balanced diet with sufficient fiber. Of course, that advice is complicated by a more well-known side effect, known as addiction.
I know what you’re thinking; this is a humor blog, and while (someone else’s) constipation is worth a chuckle or two, opioid addiction is no laughing matter. You’re right of course, and I’ll try to stay off the addiction aspect of this and focus on other things. Take for instance, the recent public service outreaches from New Jersey’s Governor Chris Christie. The man who allegedly forced massive traffic snarls as petty retribution for a political slight and who regularly goes on rants about professional sports teams and their fans – has suddenly taken interest in giving drug users somewhere to turn instead of overdosing. Many believe Governor Christie has a food addiction problem, so it’s understandable that he might have sympathy for others struggling with Chunky Monkeys on their backs.
Here’s a thought; instead of helping people deal with opioid induced constipation, maybe the pharmaceutical industry could work on getting people off of opioids in the first place. A more cynical blogger might point out that getting people off drugs doesn’t help drug company profits. Everything comes back to the almighty dollar. If it’s not about money, why would US troops in Afghanistan be guarding poppy fields? Perhaps they’re just defending the poppies rights to freely elect their own leaders and to not grow up to hate America.
You were right all along – aside from the photo of C.C. in a rather snug baseball uniform, there’s no funny here. Maybe next time.
Subway is now portraying themselves as purveyors of natural, wholesome sammiches. The ad agency must be banking on the American public forgetting all about their clients having used a material commonly found in yoga mats in their bread. One can’t blame the ad agency, after all, they’re dealing with an American public which is generally thought to have the attention span of a caffeinated flea.
By the same token, I know people who haven’t been swimming in the ocean since seeing “Jaws” in 1976. They just can’t forget about it. If they dare to wade in past their ankles, they start hearing that music; “Duhhhh-Dumm…duhhh-dumm…DUMM DUMM DUMM!” Next thing you know, they’re back to baking themselves on the blanket and considering a walk up to the boardwalk to get some curly fries. They may well have read about the risks of eating fried food and how getting sunburns is more dangerous to you than a great white, but they’ve conveniently forgotten about it.
I had a particularly unpleasant experience a couple of years ago. Many of the perpetrators are no longer around, but still, I can’t forget about it. Part of me knows that I need to let it go, but part of me is much more stubborn about it. I tell myself that never forgetting will allow me to keep my defenses up and avoid ever having to deal with any such witch hunt again. My logic may be well intentioned, but I wonder sometimes if I’ll be sitting in a rocking chair at Sunnyvale Convalescent Care someday rambling on about it to some poor soul who thinks Nixon is in the white house.
I had a great idea of how I could wrap this post up in a neat little somewhat humorous bow, but true to form, I forgot it. I do still recall the jingle of a commercial for the International House of Pancakes from the early 70’s, but that doesn’t really help me just now. If the ending comes to me, I’ll try to remember to put it in the comments section below.
I was once told by a very wise man, that I “thought too much”. Sadly, he didn’t stick around this earth long enough for me to let him know that he was onto something.
I’d love to say that I’ve managed to get my over-active brain under control, but that’s not happening. Despite all the magic elixirs the distillers of America, Scotland and Mexico can muster, I still have a tough time putting my gray matter into sleep mode. As if I didn’t have enough things to worry about with the world, I’ve been bombarded with an onslaught of political propaganda for the past six months to drive almost anyone cuckoo. The “green” candidates alone have filled my mailbox with enough paper campaign flyers to reforest Utah.
Despite my raging-yet-ragged brain, or perhaps because of it, I’m not going to waste your time giving my opinion on which candidate deserves your precious vote. I’m not a political expert, nor am I particularly media savvy. I certainly don’t wish to use my massive blogging platform to give either candidate an edge just because of my fickle opinion.
Instead, I’m going to let you in on my plan. That’s right, I have a plan. In spite of my scheme being the fruit of a hyper-active cranium, it’s admittedly vague and riddled with flaws. That being said, it’s still something, and its existence might just be enough to get me through the next week or more.
As much as I’ve tried to ignore the political nonsense, it’s had its effect on me. I’ve become convinced that the end of the world as we know it is just around the corner – like say around lunchtime Wednesday, possibly as late as Happy Hour over at the Blue Monkey. The prospect of having to choose between Trump and Clinton may be just enough to make a sizable portion of the population say something along the lines of:
“Fuck it! We had a good coupla hundred years, amiright? Hell, even if you count the Great Depression and the time the NFL went on strike – this country rocked! All good things come to an end though, just like ‘Breaking Bad’ or ‘Gilligan’s Island’. Let’s just torch the place and maybe make some smores with the kids while we watch it burn.”
Having co-existed with my brain for over half a century, I knew better than to give credence to such outlandish fantasies without a little more evidence. Perhaps a sign of the coming end-of- days would solidify my fears. Then the Chicago Cubs won the World Series. I’m hardly a baseball fan, but I know a harbinger of doom when I see it. When you combine the win with Vladdy Putin being buddies with Steven Segal and Kim Jung Un having diplomatic meetings with Dennis Rodman, it’s time to act.
So I went out to Walmart and bought a water purification gizmo, a flint for starting fire like they do on “Survivor” and a few hundred feet of something called “para-cord” (It’ll come in handy if I need to lash something to something else, or hang some clothes to dry after washing them in a drainage ditch). I splurged on a multi-tool which looks even cooler than my original multi-tool but doesn’t have a corkscrew.
As residents of suburbia, it’s doubtful my wife and I will be able to escape to the wilderness where we could eke out a meager existence in a hut made of sticks and para-cord. There’s simply too much urban blight between us and the mountains. Yeah Philly, I’m talking about you (Please don’t tell Camden we’re here). More likely than not, we’ll just hunker down in my modest home and wait for looters. I don’t have any firearms but I do own a nearly complete set of kitchen knives and a whiffle ball bat, so the interlopers will have to be pretty close before I’ll be able to filet any of them.
Food is going to be an issue, as my wife is a vegetarian. She’ll probably be a little fussy about eating the dog when the time comes. We’ve got a few bags of dried beans laying in the back of the cabinet from the last time I thought the world was ending. If we were hungry enough we could resort to making quinoa – by that stage we wont have to worry about sharing it with the dog.
Having lived through Hurricane Sandy, I’ve got a ton of flashlights and three or four AA batteries. I’m thinking that rechargeable batteries and a solar charger would be good to have. There’s a good chance my wife will kill me for buying all of this crap before I ever get a chance to use it.
I’ll have to make sure I show her how to use the flint to start a fire before she sees the Amazon bill.