Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Top Ten Tuesdays: What changes are we making to TSA search policies?

10) To put travelers more at ease, all body scanning stations will play Barry White songs.

9) TSA agents will be required to use hand warmers for a minimum of 15 seconds before commencing groping.

8) Platinum-level frequent fliers will gain free access to the Champagne Screening Room.

7) All children under the age of 10 will be fully searched as 98% of all airline terror is caused by children under 10.

6) Passengers who decline pat-downs will be given option to fly while restrained in strait jackets.

5) For flights deemed high security risks, all passengers will be fed free roofies during boarding and receive a free glass of water to the face upon landing.

4) TSA agents will ask a series of questions designed to get to know you before reaching down your pants.

3) All travelers lacking health insurance will be eligible for free colonoscopy during body cavity search.

2) Agents will no longer be able to use the phrases, “Get a load of these,” “Whoah, mama, daddy like!” or “How you doin’?” during searches. Also, there will be a five-second time limit on giggling.

1) Before invasive searches begin, passengers will be asked if they voted for George W. Bush. Those answering in the affirmative will be fitted with a ball gag since this is what they asked for.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Pandora 11

It's one more Pandora than 10!

This week I’m turning control of the tunes over to 3B Radio, the official Pandora station of Three Bulls (America’s most trusted name in half-assed blogging™). The idea was to make a station that would be full of love and hate, tunes you can’t live without, tunes you’re ashamed to admit liking, and tunes that you would start a jihad against. Here’s what I entered in my five categories.

1) A song you love but you KNOW is definitely not for everyone: “Heat of the Moment,” Asia
When The Lovely Becky and I went to see The 40-Year-Old Virgin, we were the only people in the movie theater to laugh at the two Asia jokes. Made me feel as old as the time I talked to someone who didn’t know who Kip Winger was.

2) A song you are embarrassed about loving so you will roll up the car window when it comes on: “That’s What You Get,” Paramore
This is Rock Band-sponsored shame. I’m covering my face with my hands right now.

3) A song that you have a hate relationship with, meaning a song you are familiar with and CANNOT stand: “Personal Jesus,” Depeche Mode
The worst song from a band I cannot stand.

4) A song that do NOT like from a band you DO like: “The Crunge,” Led Zeppelin
The only way this song makes sense is if Zeppelin intended it as a joke. “Let’s fart out a terrible song on an otherwise classic album and see what happens.”

5) A song that you love so much you would nutpunch someone for denigrating it: “You Make My Dreams” Hall & Oates
I cannot have a bad day when I hear this.

6) A song that you know is completely overplayed but you still love and can listen to over and over again anyway: “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Queen
You know how some people love The Rocky Horror Picture Show and want to sing all the songs a zillion times? Well, I hate that movie more than The Goonies. But “Bohemian Rhapsody” is my Rocky Horror. I never get tired of hearing or singing it.

After a couple dozen entries like that, here’s what Pandora cranked out for me today:

1) “Untouchable,” Taylor Swift. Here’s the difference between young love and old love: economy. When you’re young and in love, you can take a few minutes to say the same thing over and over and over again, because it’s just you and the person you’re interested in. Old love doesn’t have time for that. There’s kids to feed and jobs to work and shit to do. Old love wonders why you just didn’t stop at the first chorus because, really, you said everything you needed to say. That’s much more efficient, and even better, it’s more appreciated, because old love knows about the kids and work and shit and is grateful that you stopped what you were doing to say I love you.

2) “Stop and Stare,” OneRepublic. I am stopping and staring at the lack of a space in the band name. Why? It triggers the MS Word spell check and sticks a little red line beneath the name. Although that’s the most creative thing about this lukewarm cup of coffeehouse pop.

3) “All-American Girl,” Carrie Underwood. I would completely gloss over this except that it’s about a) having a kid and b) about a father who wants a son but has a daughter and he becomes enraptured with her. I wish part A was as easy as Ms. Underwood makes it out to be, but in our case it was more like “Experiments in the Phantasmal Realm of Procreation (Infertility Opus Pts. I-XXII)” by Dream Theater. As for B, when you go through a Dream Theater song like that, you’re just happy that you wind up with anything that can hug you and doesn’t have leathery bat wings.

4) “Party in the U.S.A.,” Miley Cyrus. I would have made Hannah Montana about an all-American girl who has a secret life in a death metal band called Succubus. I’m also pretty sure this song would give lab rats cancer.

5) “Sweet Child o’ Mine,” Guns N’ Roses. Now we’re cooking with heroin! Even if I don’t physically do the Axl shimmy, I mentally do it every time I hear this song. I also can’t tell if Pandora is making a subtle joke about Hannah Montana, thereby showing AI self-awareness. If it starts singing “Daisy” or asking if I’d like to play Global Thermonuclear War, I’m pulling the plug.

6) “You Really Got Me,” Van Halen. Daddy’s little girl has apparently grown up, created a time machine, and started hanging out at the Whiskey-a-Go-Go.

7) “Paranoid,” Black Sabbath. I have to admit, it’s the pure schizophrenia of 3B Radio that is making me a fan. Much like the Axl shimmy, this one always makes me mentally do the Ozzy head shake, that awkward little headbang motion he would do when he was waiting for Tommy Iommi to finish his solo. Of course, now Ozzy can’t stop doing that shake.

8) “Don’t Need Nothing But a Good Time,” Poison. Fuck me gently with a chainsaw. So awful, and yet I’ve always been kind of drawn to its awfulness like a mosquito to a bug light.

9) “Tennessee Flat Top Box,” Johnny Cash. Here’s a good litmus test for whether a song has any redemptive value: would it not suck if Johnny Cash sang it? You could probably hand him, “Don’t Need Nothing But a Good Time,” and he could turn it into a cautionary tale about a life full of shallow sexual encounters, substance abuse, and rootless existence. But even he couldn’t save “Every Rose Has Its Thorn.”

10) “I Won’t Give Up My Train,” Merle Haggard. This requires a dog to drink with. Sadly, I only have two cats.

11) “Workin’ on a Groovy Thing,” The 5th Dimension. Not my cup of Joe (needs more drum solo), but groovy enough to end today’s list.

So there you go. Surprisingly not completely awful. Have a good weekend.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Top Ten Wednesdays: What are we proposing to reduce the deficit?

10) Cutting all earmarks except those for lean meats and vegetables.

9) Charging a one-dollar fee every time a politician says “the American people.”

8) Reducing the budget burden of Social Security, Medicare, and federal education programs by making elderly who are too sick to work a “key ingredient” in the school lunch program.

7) Slashing regulatory overhead by making businesses swear that they won’t do anything illegal.

6) Eliminating unemployment benefits by handing brooms to the jobless so they can sweep themselves under the rug.

5) Putting the Department of Education up for sale on Craigslist.

4) Telling America to have a Coke and a tax bill.

3) Lowering taxes for the wealthy, waving a magic wand, and saying “presto!”

2) Getting a bloated, tearful Washington to admit to Jillian Michaels that it only spends excessively because it feels unloved and unwanted.

1) Cutting our ballooning military budget by eliminating unnecessary weapons systems and pulling out of draining foreign conflicts with no end in sight. Just kidding, we’ll probably just eliminate all federal financial aid for college.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Chicago Bears in "Throwmance"

I don't think I've been quite on my game this season with the Bears blogging. Part of it is being pressed for time, part of it focusing a lot of my creative energies on rewriting my book. But I'm pretty happy with framing the Bears new pass-happy offense as a high school romance gone awry:


Since TLB asked the question, "Rikki" is running back Ricky Williams, for whom Mike Ditka traded all of his draft picks.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Top Ten Tuesdays: How are we going to reshape the American government?

10) Polishing our dark spots to a pearly-white sheen.

9) Making sure that Washington will no longer pick on the poor, powerless, under-represented wealthy.

8) Increasing the self-reliance of the elderly by removing Social Security.

7) Using our social mandate to eliminate social man dates.

6) Combining funding for the arts with funding for health coverage.

5) Switching from pork-barrel policies to bent-over-a-barrel policies.

4) Making sure everything old is Newt again.

3) Putting a church addition on our state houses.

2) Outsourcing the regulation of business to businesses.

1) Replacing its bleeding heart with a metal fist.

Friday, November 05, 2010

No Random 11 today

Which is too bad, because I was going to do an All Angry Music Guide edition. But Libby has pink eye and a fever, which means doctor visits and babying and trying to get work done in between.

The other thing I've been keeping in mind, amid the talk of historic and sweeping and mandate and a Roman helmet for America (look it up) is that, regardless of the shift in power, the 'Baggers grabbed hold of the House. It's been expected since last year, it fits a historic trend, and in the end, while they will rant and rage and do all the stuff they've done since the last election, they won't get squat done. They don't have the votes and, more importantly, many of the conservative Democrats who were part of the problem were replaced with people who were out-of-the closet conservatives. I don't think they're going to get many crossover votes. Furthermore, it's real easy to say you're going to cut spending and another to actually do it. There's no way the GOP can slash spending and keep giving the rich their tax breaks without making painful, politically unpopular cuts.

At the same time, the Democrats deserved this. It reminds me of a South Park episode, where Cartman fakes being handicapped so he can enter the Special Olympics and presumably win it easily. Only he finds out that he's so fat and out of shape, kids with disabilities are far better athletes than he is. I certainly don't want the Rand Pauls of the world in power, but at the same time if one's message is so weak that it can't beat the likes of Rand Paul, well, maybe you deserve to lose.

When Franklin Roosevelt took office in 1933, he didn't spend the first two years of his first term worrying about how Republicans labeled him. He didn't adjust his message for the Father Coughlin's and Huey Long's of the country. He took action. Some of what he did was ineffective. Some of it borderline unconstitutional (for which he was rightly rebuffed). But I think the reason why he was elected again and again is because he made the American people feel like he was working for them, doing whatever he could to get the country out of the Depression or at the very least ease the effects of it. He sure as hell didn't maintain that popularity by appeasing his opponents.

Monday, November 01, 2010

T: The Party, Part III

Our story so far:
Part I
Part II

FBI AGENT DEMI KRATT, member of the T alien Fifth Column, LUCAS, and his human partner, JEROME, drive to a large Tea Party rally in Scranton, Pennsylvania. LUCAS is on the phone.

I need you, buddy...No, I know it’ll work. The cameras will be rolling, you just have to do that voodoo that you do so well...I knew I could count on you. (hangs up his phone)

Who was that?

Our secret weapon against the T’s.

Lucas, how are we going to stop them? They have superior technology, political momentum, a built-in distrust of the media....

But here’s what the T’s don’t have: control over their sexual arousal.

I’ll testify to that.

T females work very hard to keep their arousal under control, because when they do become aroused, they emit three times the usual body heart in order to send a signal to the males that they’re ready to mate. If we get Queen Palin to get hot and bothered.....

Her human skin will melt off!

And that means goodbye political cougar and hello dragon lady.

How is your friend going to manage to get Palin hot and bothered in front of a rally full of people?

The T’s may be very advanced in many ways, but our sense of what we find sexy lags about 25 years behind humans. My friend will fit the bill perfectly.

The three arrive at the Tea Party rally in Scranton and try to maintain a low profile in the crowd. Jerome jumps.

JEROME (whispering)
Lucas, baby, I appreciate the attention, but now is not the time.

The time for what?

You pinched my ass.

No I didn’t?

Jerome looks behind him and sees a big, burly man wink at him.

Hmpf, I swear they should hold this tea party in the closet.

They settle into the middle of the crowd as Palin comes on stage. The crowd goes crazy. Cameras everywhere flash and transmit her speech to all the major news outlets.

Hi ya, Scranton! Are you ready to take back Pennsylvania? (The crowd cheers wildly.) Are you ready for freedom and liberty and patriotism and Jesus and lower taxes and good times? (The crowd is almost orgasmic.) Then I’m your gal!

Outside of the crowd, a vintage black Pontiac Firebird approaches the crowd. It doesn’t slow down as it gets closer, until the drive slams on the brakes and stops with the hood pointed toward the stage. The crowd grows quiet as they and Palin stop to look at the car.

The T-tops pop off as Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again” begins to play. Actor MARC SINGER emerges out of the top and falls across the hood of the car. He wears a headband, a muscle shirt, and jeans so tight, it’s easy to tell he’s circumsized.

Oh my!

As the song plays, Singer writhes and spreads his legs on the hood. The media cameras all follow him and then capture Palin’s reaction.

PALIN (waving her hand)
Is it getting hot out here?

During the guitar solo, flips on his front and dry humps the hood. Palin’s skin begins to glow and slowly melt off her face. When Singer flips back over and elevates his pelvis fully in the sky, the last of Palin’s mask falls off, revealing her natural reptilian look. Other T females have the same reaction, their fake skin dropping off, and even a couple of T males also heat up, including Lucas.

Lucas! Don’t tell me you’ve got the hots for that little County Seat tramp!

I’m sorry, I’m only reptilian. I can’t help myself. We had a thing back in the 80s.

The rally devolves into screaming chaos as the Tea Partiers run from the revealed T’s. Palin is oblivious, however, completely focused on Singer’s gyrations.

PALIN (leaping off the stage)
Come to mama!

She rushes Singer before being restrained by police.

Let me go! I need to mate! And feed!

They take her away and the other T’s are also rounded up, including Lucas. Marc Singer comes over to speak to Lucas.

Lucas! I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean to expose you, too. Although I have to say, I’m flattered you still feel that way about me. I’ll get your bail money.

JEROME (pushes him away)
Save your money and get that mullet cut, son. I’ll take care of the bail.

Mr. Singer, thank you so much. You’ve done a great service to your country, exposing the T’s just before the election.

It’s all in a day’s work for The Beastmaster, ma’am.

Okay, then....Well, gotta go.

Say, need a ride in the Trans Am?

I’m good, thanks. (Leaves quickly)

SINGER (watches her go)
Yeah, still got it.

Fast forward to November 3. Agent Kratt reads the newspaper with Lucas and Jerome.

I can’t believe this. The T’s actually did better after they were exposed? How the hell is that possible.

LUCAS (reading)
“A tearful Glenn Beck helped marshal record turnout for an off-year election, telling his followers that political convictions don’t run skin deep, and that Sarah Palin’s heart was still the same, even if it was located where a human vagina would be.”

Get this, Rush Limbaugh said, “The T’s have what we need, a little cold blood to make the kind of ruthless government cuts that our warm-blooded bleeding hearts won’t. And as a bonus they’ll actually eat the rats running Washington.”

I hate to say it, Demi, but your humans are getting exactly what you deserve.

Maybe you’re right. (She takes out her cell and makes a call)

Who are you calling?

Marc Singer.

Get out!

Like Lucas says, I’m getting what I deserve. Compared to life under the T’s, a weekend of wiggling under The Beastmaster doesn’t seem so bad.

Hey, we could double.

Not on your life