Thursday, April 30, 2009

I would sincerely love the catharsis that would be afforded me by bloggy blogging about what's been eating me this week, what's been raining on my parade, but I am bound by my word not to speak of this vexation. A man is only as good as his word, and I am trying so hard for my word to be worth a damn.

"A little more than kin, and less than kind."
--Wm. Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act I, Scene II

But enough of that, let's move on to something altogether more pleasant. Consider the curious case of Emilia Fox, daughter of the venerable English actor Edward Fox. Many girls appear lovely at first glance, but over time that initial blush fades and flaws that were at first obscured soon become all that one can see. Miss Fox is that rarest of beauties, one who becomes lovelier each time she is seen. Also, I highly recommend Cashback to anyone who hasn't seen the film.

I wonder what is the impression conveyed by posts such as this? Am I an inveterate pervert, a Peeping Tom looking at latter-day Ladies Godiva, or a man who appreciates beauty as an ideal? Or a third option altogether?
Objective ZED ALPHA
I have surmounted the first hurdle; my score on the Jeopardy! online examination (taken in January of this year: wayback machinelink), though still unknown to me, was sufficient for advancement to an in-person appointment. So, I will sojourn to the Windy City at the end of May for another fifty-question examination, an interview, and a mock game. If I conquer each of these tasks, my name will then be entered into a pool for which the next year's worth of contestants will the chosen. The long and short of it is that I have completed successfully the first of three phases of the selection process, but it may yet be a long time coming before I potentially appear as a contestant on Jeopardy!

Nevertheless, to have triumphed over the first stage is so much more gratifying than to have failed. So, three cheers for me. Hip hip! Hooray! Hip hip! Hooray! Hip hip! Hooray!

Spy vs. Spy
According to both President Obama and his booster club in the "objective" press, 100% of America's problems were caused by the previous administration. So how is it our relations with the Russian Federation still are less than pure sunshine and rainbows? Spylink. We've all but endorsed Russia's barbarous efforts to rape* Georgia's sovereignty and carve up its territory, and yet still the Russians bellyache, declaring, "This outrageous action fundamentally contradicts statements by N.A.T.O.'s leadership on its readiness to normalise (sic) ties with Russia." I thought our charlatan president's charm offensive was supposed to heal all wounds?

Whenever I think about the Russians, I am reminded, as I am in so many circumstances, of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and something Weyoun said of the sons and daughters of Romulus: "Romulans. So predictably treacherous." So predictably treacherous, and yet President Obama is willing to scrap out purely defensive missile defense system in exchange for their "cooperation" on Iran's Manhattan Project. The Russians are right to spy on us; every day, we project weakness and naïveté, and they would be acting against their own self-interest if they did not seek to exploit our timorous nature.

*In the traditional sense of the word.

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
The London Symphony Orchestra, "Allegro con Brio" (from Ludwig Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 in C Minor, Opus 67 "Fate") from (the) London Symphony Orchestra Plays Classical Favourites (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I've always preferred "Suffer your fate" to "Fulfill your destiny." Not that I believe in either fate or destiny, predestination being yet another Protestant heresy.

Mittwoch, 29 April
They Might Be Giants, "Scott Bower" from Cast Your Pod to the Wind (T.L.A.M.)


"Scott Bower, Scott Bower,
My lifestyle determines my death style.
Scott Bower, Scott Bower,
My lifeboat determines my death boat.

Scott Bower, Scott Bower,
My lightsaber determines my Death Star."

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The Starting Line, "Hello Houston" from Say It Like You Mean It (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: What is so difficult about "Hello, Houston"? Still, credit where it is due, Say It Like You Mean It is a great album title.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Queen, "Bohemian Rhapsody" from Greatest Hits I (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I woke up this morning singing "Bohemian Rhapsody." Hadn't thought about it in forever. Sometimes the R.B.D.S.O.T.D. is carefully, consciously chosen, sometimes even to a specific propaganda purpose; sometimes the muse, for want of a better term, speaks and my consent it not required.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXXVII - The Custom of the Sea.

Lies, Damned Lies, & the News
I will never understand how Vice President Biden has been allowed to assume his office. Isn't racism supposed to be a bad thing? The man is a demonstrable and unrepentant racist, and yet my mother is sitting downstairs watching a fawning 60 Minutes tribute to "Regular Joe." Seriously, did I miss a memo? Aren't racists supposed to be shunned?

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Reel Big Fish, "Cannibal" from Monkeys For Nothin' and the Chimps For Free (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I've had for a decade now the seed of a short story floating around in my head, about the Transubstantiation that occurs during a Catholic Mass, titled "Merry Cannibals."

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Eric Bogle, "The Band Played Waltzing Matilda" courtesy of The Watergirl (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: 'Tis A.N.Z.A.C. Day. In the Commonwealth of Australia and the Realm of New Zealand, the 25th of April is as sacred as the 11th of November, by all its various names, is to the rest of the world. God rest all those brave Aussies and Kiwis; they died not in vain.
The Queue
The jones for mysteries persists, and I hope to find in Mrs. Christie a far better practitioner of the form than C. S. Harris. I have enjoyed the latter authoress's three Sebastian St. Cyr novels, but each has featured at least one eye-rolling moment of detective expertise and, as the series progresses, St. Cyr, the Viscount Devlin, is beginning to take on all the trappings of an invincible superman. This is most unfortunate. Why Mermaids Sing is the weakest book of the three, in large measure because it is the only one not to feature a substantial subplot of Regency politics. Harris's mysteries are not strong enough to survive without a significant dose of political skulduggery. That said, I would be reading Where Serpents Sleep now instead of Death on the Nile had the former been available from McFarlen; instead, I've called dibs on the next copy to be returned and begun ahead of schedule my sampling of Agatha Christie's daunting body of work.

C. S. Harris, What Angels Fear
James Hilton, Lost Horizon
C. S. Harris, When Gods Die
C. S. Harris, Why Mermaids Sing

Agatha Christie, Death on the Nile
Jacques-Yves Cousteau, "Exploring a New World Undersea," Great Adventures with National Geographic

C. S. Harris, Where Serpents Sleep
Agatha Christie, And Then There Were None a.k.a. Ten Little Indians a.k.a. Ten Little Niggers
David M. Friedman, The Immortalists: Charles Lindbergh, Dr. Alexis Carrel, and Their Daring Quest to Live Forever
Saki, When William Came: A Story of London Under the Hohenzollerns (from The Complete Saki)
Ernest Shackleton, South
John Toland, The Great Dirigibles: Their Triumphs and Disasters (catch as catch can)
Sloane Crosley, I Was Told There'd be Cake
John Hodgman, The Areas of My Expertise
Kim Newman, Dracula Cha Cha Cha
Francie Lin, The Foreigner

Project TRITON
The spate of mysteries is my attempt to bend to my own purpose my impressionable nature. Project TRITON is a mystery and I have precious little experience with mysteries; I can only gain my reading more of them, both because my own skills will be sharpened and because it will help to keep my flighty mind focused on the task at hand. Eyes on the prize, old son, keep your eyes on the prize. Project TROIKA might have turned out substantially differently had it not been conceived, developed, and plotted while the Indiana Jones series loomed so large in my thoughts. When the time eventually comes to further develop my seed of a science fiction novel Man's Burden and its accompanying universe, I would do well to brush up on my H. Beam Piper and Robert Heinlein, as well as my Rudyard Kipling and Thomas Hobbes.

There are several proposed story ideas that might be developed into a sequel to the Project TROIKA novel, which once selected will be codenamed Project TRIANGLE. The Immortalists seems like it might be quite handy when the times comes to work on whichever idea becomes Project TRIANGLE.

Under President Obama, we "will stand with the people of Iraq," says Secretary of State Clinton, even though we have in place a plan to withdraw all American combat troops: surrenderlink. So, if we won't be willing to fight alongside the Iraqis against the Iranian-funded, -trained, and -armed militias and the diehard remnants of al-Qaeda in Iraq, what exactly does standing "with the people of Iraq" mean? The way we stood with the people of South Vietnam in 1975 as the North Vietnamese invaded in open defiance of the Paris Peace Accords? Words alone without the possibility of martial backing are useless, as the European impotence to stop the Bosnian War and "ethnic cleansing" if 1992-95 demonstrated. Only when Secretary Clinton's husband threatened the use of American military might did the wholesale slaughter of Muslim Bosniaks by the Bosnian Serb death squads end. Sadly, both our charlatan president and our illustrious Secretary of State seem to be eager for a replay of the evacuation of Saigon in '75. Do those reckless fools realize how many helicopters will be required to evacuate all our personnel in the Green Zone?

Welcome to the parade of horrors, wherein America cravenly abandons those we have asked to place their trust in us.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Perchance to Dream
I had uncharacteristically and unpleasantly vivid dreams every morning this week. Monday's was the most graphic sex dream I've ever had, which made me extremely uncomfortable and more than a little disgusted as soon as I awoke. Wednesday's was the doozy, though; I was roommates with The Watergirl in an apartment that was a hybrid of this old place I was familiar with in Ann Arbor, Macho Grande, and a basement rumpus room. And then later I was chased by a gila monster. Chased isn't really the right word. It wanted to nuzzle with me like a cat, but I was terrified of it because it was a blasted gila monster. This is a creature for which our language has no other word but "monster," how I am to be anything but scared witless by it? It's not called a gila lizard or a gila monitor, no, it's a gila MONSTER. And unlike real gila monsters, this bête noire was as fast and agile as a cat. And in the end, predictably, the fiendish thing bit me. And of course a gila monster's bite is poisonous, that's what makes it so monstrous. I woke up before I learned whether my poisoning was fatal.

I hate dreams.

"To die, to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to—'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep, perchance to dream."
--Wm. Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act III, Scene I

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Agincourtdb, "Lamplighter" via iTunes (T.L.A.M.)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Operation: AXIOM - Narwhal Day Approaches
One month 'til Narwhal Day, repeat, just one month 'til Narwhal Day. There is one month remaining to make the necessary preparations, but those in true sympathy with the narwhal will find the task not at all daunting. On Narwhal Day, the 23rd of May, perform three simple acts: 1) wear a gray article of clothing, preferably visible for all the world to see, but unmentionables are sufficient also. 2) Listen to "Sympathy for the Narwhal" by DJ Seaghost, available on the album Rice Capades (odd that no one has ever asked me to burn them a copy to compact disc). 3) Recite the Oath of Narwhal Day. This is the most difficult of the three, because a true recitation of the Oath requires purity of heart and clarity of mind, so as truly to believe the words of the Oath. The Oath is posted on The Secret Base every Narwhal Day, or I will be only too happy to email it to anyone who asks.

But don't be intimidated by the necessary ritual, Narwhal Day is for anyone and everyone who appreciates the world's weirdest whale with its magnificent, ridiculous tusk. Narwhal!

Believe: Red Wings 6-5 Blue Jackets
Four down, twelve to go. Best of seven: sweep, Detroit 4-0 Columbus.

I wish like the Dickens that I'd seen those crucial minutes of the second period. Alas, such are the perils of declining your mother's unnecessarily generous offer to allow you to eat dinner in the other room in front of the television. Of course, it's rare indeed when dinner isn't served until after 8:00 p.m. But all that is neither here nor there. The B.J.'s committed an elementary error in putting too many men on the ice and the Mule made them pay. Justice is served, good prevails over evil, and we live to fight another day. Go Wings!


Project TRITON
The work continues apace, and I am thrilled at how splendidly everything seems to be turning out. I cannot wait to (several steps down the road) show this to all of you!

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Michael Giacchino, "Thunderhead" from Speed Racer: Original Motion Picture Score (T.L.A.M.)

Mittwoch, 22 April
The Puppini Sisters, "Soho Nights" from The Rise and Fall of Ruby Woo (T.L.A.M.)

Dienstag, 21 April
The Wombats, "Dr Suzanne Mattox PhD" from A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: These Liverpudlian barbarians are killing me. What is so Bog-damned difficult about "Dr. Suzanne Mattox, Ph.D."? Okay, I can let the "Dr" slide, because the custom in British English is not to use periods with forms of address such as Dr., Mr., or Mrs., but there's no defense for the lack of the comma or the ludicrous rendering of Ph.D. Shape up, lads!
Second Intermission: Red Wings 5-5 Blue Jackets
Best of seven: Detroit 3-0 Columbus

Rocket Richard, what the heck happened?! The B.J.s scored early in the second period to cut the Wings' lead to 3-2, but shortly thereafter my mom wanted to change to channel to watch a rerun of last week's Grey's Anatomy (which she saw last week). After dinner, I washed the dishes, and then engaged in a little of the old chit-chat with Mom. By the time I turned the T.V. in the other room on a tuned back into the game, the score was 5-5 with a minute and a half left in the second. Toe Blake's toe, what the heck happened? Is Ozzie hurt? Has the world gone mad?

Go Wings!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Believe: Red Wings 4-1 Blue Jackets
Three down, thirteen to go. Best of seven: Detroit 3-0 Columbus.

If there's one thing I like better than beating Buckeye scum, it's beating Buckeye scum in front of their crummy home town Buckeye scum crowd. Woot!

I must admit, though, that I am sick and tired of lodging this query every year: why is it that when the Red Wings hit the puck up into the netting behind the opposing goaltender, the puck is ruled to have gone out of bounds and the play is whistled dead (which is the N.H.L.'s official rule on the subject), but when opposing players hit the puck up into the netting behind the Red Wings' goaltender, the puck is ruled to have stayed in bounds and the play continues? I am also sick and tired of asking, year after year, the logical follow up question: are N.H.L. officials corrupt or incompetent? Because those are the only two options, they are either corrupt or incompetent. Personally, I vote for corrupt; Buckeye scum are well known to have deep pockets when it comes to bribing zebras. And sick and tired though I may be, I shan't stop, not until the N.H.L. either requires games to be called fairly, or comes out and admits the officially-tolerated corruption among its referees and linesmen. Of course, even with their tame zebras trying to throw the game, the B.J.s still sucked mightily and blew their best chance to get back into the series, puns fully intended.

Believe. Go Wings!

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXXVI - The Battles of Lexington & Concord, 19 April 1775.

My apologies for the lateness of this episode. Last night, after Law & Order: Criminal Intent, I hung around to check out In Plain Sight, and then after that I urgently needed to finish a Project TRITON email for K. Steeze.

This evening, in the final session of my economic history class, a lady who has spend the last four months spouting laughably populist and vaguely Marxist claptrap turned to me and said, "You're too smart to be so right wing." Lovely. It reminded me, as I remarked to her, of when my erstwhile best friend would say to me, "You're way too smart to believe in God."

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Fatboy Slim, "Weapon of Choice" (video) via YouTube (T.L.A.M.)

Sonntag, 19 April
The Wombats, "Backfire At the Disco" from A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation (T.L.A.M.)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Believe: Red Wings 4-0 Blue Jackets
Two down, fourteen to go. Best of seven: Detroit 2-0 Columbus.

I've never liked Ken Hitchcock, but accusing the Wings of cheating in the face off circle just because of sour grapes from the first game was low, even for him. And tonight's domination by the Red Wings was the perfect response to Hitchcock's whining. Whining and taking cheap shots late in the third: the Columbus B.J.s are exactly the hockey team the Buckeye State deserves. "O-H!" "F-U."

I am really digging the slogan/promotion "The Beard is Back." (But not so much that I'm jumping the gun on next fall's Banzai Beard Bonanza II: Bonsai's Revenge.)


Wombatlink. Oy, if any of you happen to visit the Australian state of Tasmania (though I still prefer the original Western name for the island, Van Diemen's Land, which somehow seems more poetic), I'd love some wombat poo paper as a souvenir.

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
The Wombats, "Tales of Girls, Boys and Marsupials" from A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: The title should be "Tales of Girls, Boys, and Marsupials." Pay no mind to the grammatical anarchists who tell you that the comma before the last item on a list is superfluous. Their position is nothing but a pack of lies. And anarchy. Lies and anarchy.

The album title is a stickier wicket, because a comma before an ampersand just doesn't work. And that for me is the most trying part of my love for the ampersand.

Freitag, 17 April
The Proclaimers, "Five O'Clock World" from Born Innocent (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: The perfect song for the beginning of the weekend… even if a day late.

"But it's a five o'clock world when the whistle blows,
No one owns a piece of my time.
And there's a five o'clock me inside my clothes,
Thinking that the world looks fine, yeah."

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Believe: Red Wings 4-1 Blue Jackets
Sixteen wins to retain Lord Stanley's Cup. One down, fifteen to go. Best of seven: Detroit 1-0 Columbus.

Wayback Machinelink.


The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, "I Believe I Can Fly" from Take a Break (T.L.A.M.)

Mittwoch, 15 April
OutKast, "Hey Ya!" courtesy of my erstwhile roommate at B.T.W. South (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: Ted's acoustic version on Scrubs was really quite beautiful.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Why does no one seem to have a problem with the fact that Thomas Jefferson was a rapist?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The house lost electrical power for half an hour this evening. I wrote an entry in my journal by candlelight, beautiful candlelight. No Luddite I, but there's nothing wrong with an appreciation for the charms of the old ways.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Roy Orbison, "Ooby Dooby" from Star Trek: First Contact: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: Of course, without sweet, sweet electricity, there'd be no Roy. And without Roy, what really is the point of living? Boy howdy, that ugly bastard could sing.

Monday, April 13, 2009

A bumper sticker I spied whilst driving after the conclusion of breakfast at Venus with The Guy and The Gal:

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The Puppini Sisters, "I Can't Believe I'm Not a Millionaire" from The Rise and Fall of Ruby Woo (T.L.A.M.)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Explorers Club
No. CXXV - Jackie Stewart's life is better than yours.

One of these Halloweens, I'm really going to have to costume myself as Jackie Stewart.

Fair warning, lads and lasses, this next week is going to be hellishly hectic and should leave me hopelessly harried. I expect bloggy blogging to be sporadic and grumpy. But at least I've breakfast with The Guy and The Gal scheduled for the morrow, and that should be an absolute delight.

Easter was, and shall continue to be 'til Pentecost, magnificent. If you're willing, I'd like to speak with each of you about the Lord God's fathomless love.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The London Symphony Orchestra, "Ode to Joy" (from Ludwig Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 in D Major, Opus 125 "Choral") from (the) London Symphony Orchestra Plays Classical Favourites (T.L.A.M.)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Operation AXIOM
I squandered today in lethargy and directionless anxiety. Today is precisely why I need Operation AXIOM; 'tis too late to salvage today, but there's always tomorrow. And if I properly apply the lessons of today, tomorrow should prove a bonny success.

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Ann Beretta, "Efforts Wasted" from Mailorder is Fun! (T.L.A.M.)

Freitag, 10 April
Katiä, "The Minstrel Boy" from Can't Stop the Love Sled (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: The next best thing to Miles O'Brien.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday
I believe Good Friday had a profound effect on shaping my sense of humor. Here you have the Catholic Church, almost universally a staid if not a dour institution, describing at length the sufferings of the Lord's Passion, detailing the scouring of His flesh, the torment of hoisting His cross upon His shoulder and lugging it up Calvary, His astonishment when He saw the legionaries intended to nail Him rather than tie Him to the cross. This is the most important event in history: the Resurrection is flasher and sunnier, but 'tis the Crucifixion that saved us all. The Lord God took upon Himself all the sin of the world, past, present, and future, and suffered and died for every man, woman, and child that will ever live. He died nailed to a cross, and we call that day "Good" Friday. Even as a relative youngling I smirked and remarked, "Good for us, bad for Him." The day they killed my God, Good Friday. Small wonder my predilections tend toward sarcasm and gallows humor.

A blessed Good Friday to one and all.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Remember, kids, grammar matters, and a single comma can substantially alter the meaning of the same two words. Weimar Germany was an era of German history, Weimar, Germany is a city in the Bundesland of Thuringia.

I decided to give the premiere of Harper's Island a chance tonight, but it was so bad I couldn't bear to watch it all the way through to the end. This schlock is what has become of Christopher Gorham since his character was written out of Ugly Betty? How ghastly.

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Slow Gherkin, "In Love with Moviestars" from Run Screaming (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: Why on Earth is it "In Love with Moviestars" instead of "In Love with Movie Stars"? Having not thought of Slow Gherkin for a while, I randomly began singing "In Love with Moviestars" to myself this afternoon. I often sing to myself. And there we go, the R.B.D.S.O.T.D. It's just that easy.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

On Sunday, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) launched a ballistic missile, a test conducted in direct violation of the paper tiger resolutions of the laughably named U.N. Security Council: "satellite"-link. On Monday, Secretary of Defense Gates announced President Obama's desire to slash spending on a missile defense system, a system designed specifically to intercept missiles exactly like that tested by the D.P.R.K. twenty-four hours earlier: recklesslink! I suppose leaving ourselves defenseless at precisely the moment our enemies are perfecting their weapons is the kind of change we can all believe in?

Welcome to the parade of horrors.

My left eye was on the fritz for much of yesterday. I've had glasses since I was twelve or thirteen, but I've never needed to wear them on a regular basis, never needed them to drive; my parents and siblings all need glasses simply to function. I haven't been to the optometrist in four or five years, since back when I was still covered by my parents' lavish G.M. medical benefits (actually Delphi medical benefits, but part of a tradition of generosity that carried over from G.M. when Delphi was spun-off), and I almost never wear my glasses. In any event, they wouldn't have helped me yesterday even had they not been sitting, where they are at this moment, in their case on my nightstand. You see (no pun intended), my eyes have very different prescriptions: my right eye is quite nearsighted, with objects beginning to become fuzzy at little more than two feet distant; my left eye used to be mildly farsighted, but I can tell that it is beginning to become slightly nearsighted, though still nearly 20/20. So, the left lens of my spectacles isn't a lens at all, just a piece of glass to provide symmetry with the corrective right-eye lens. My left eye carries the lion's share of my visual burden in everyday life.

And yesterday my left eye was on the fritz. All was well in the morning, and through the early afternoon, but around two o'clock I noticed that everything had suddenly become blurry. Or rather, 'twas quite distinct from the fuzziness of my right eye, the distortion bearing more of a resemblance to seeing double than seeing a blur. This was very disconcerting. There was nothing for it but to soldier on through the afternoon, and I assure you that I could still see quite well enough to drive. I went to church in the evening and made my confession as I'd planned before the ocular issue arose (the last chance for the Sacrament of Reconciliation before Good Friday), taking the opportunity during the forty-five minute wait to ask the Lord God for the strength to make a good and true confession, and to restore my vision if He saw fit. If I may sing my own praises for a moment, I was quite please with how I handled the initial realization in the afternoon. I experienced a fleeting moment of near-panic, but then my mind calmed down as advised patience. All might be right as rain, I reasoned, after a good night's sleep. I hewed to those words like a mantra whenever I felt a hint of panic creeping into my head. Before bed, after doing my penance, I asked the saints to pray for the restoration of my vision to Our Lord.

And this morning all was right as rain, and I'm left with a wee mystery*. My vision was fine, perfect by its own standards, and then it wasn't, wasn't in a specific and unvarying way I'd never before experienced. I didn't suffer a blow to the head, I wasn't poked in the eye. I'm left to wonder then if I ingested some poison or was exposed to some toxin, but if that's the case the offending substance had a curiously specific and short-lived effect.

*It's been nigh two months since The "Lolita" Mystery (10 February) and you lot seem to have given up on trying to crack the case. Say it ain't so! Tell me one of you still has the gumption to play gumshoe.

1) 10th February.
2) "Lolita" by Mustard Plug.
3) There is a girl I want to meet.
4) She is not under eighteen years of age.
5) The scene of the crime.
6) The lyrics of "Lolita."

I could resist, but why? The thirteen-year-old boy who lives inside every man will be sniggering about this for hours: this blows.


The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
Sufjan Stevens, "All Good Naysayers, Speak Up! Or Forever Hold Your Peace!" from Michigan (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I've been disappointed by the lack of "And if anyone should have good cause to oppose this union, speak now or forever hold your peace" at the wedding I've attended, but, by Jove, it'll be part of the ceremony when I wed The Last Angry Bride. And if you've got something to say, you'd better speak up!

Dienstag, 7 April
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, "Last Dead Mouse" from Don't Know How to Party (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: I can scarcely describe how jaw-droppingly surprised I was to hear "Last Dead Mouse" during C.B.S.'s broadcast of the N.C.A.A. championship game on Monday. It makes sense, sure, because no two things go together so well as North Carolina and Michigan State vying for one of the major sports championships of 2009 and a 1993 song about a mentally disturbed man trying to sell, literally, dead mice by a now-defunct ska band from Boston than only ever had one hit single? Actually, I just figured somebody behind the scenes at C.B.A. Sports has great taste.

"Last dead mouse, but I'll get more.
I'm a business man and an entrepreneur.
Folks say I'm nuts, they can say what they please,
You gotta be crazy with prices like these.
Low overhead so I can keep down the cost,
I make my own hours 'cuz I'm my own boss,
I believe in my product, I love what I sell,
'Last dead mouse,' (garbled) that's what I yell!"

Monday, April 6, 2009

Project OSPREY: The Madness
(1) North Carolina 89-72 Michigan State (2)

Boy howdy, I enjoyed that most thoroughly. Schadenfreude!

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
Five Iron Frenzy, "Spartan" from Five Iron Frenzy 2: Electric Boogaloo (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: A gesture of goodwill to the dastardly Spartans? Not bloody likely. Thanks, Tar Heels!
Project OSPREY: The Madness
I simply cannot bring myself to root or cheer for the dastardly Spartans. I could lie, join in what seems like a statewide love-in for Izzo and his goons, but I would rather be an honest monster than a lying bandwagoner. Big Ten loyalty? Not for those illiterate pyromaniacs. Not out of any genuine affection, merely as a means to an end, go Tar Heels!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Back on schedule for the first time since November, having made up all the weekly episodes I missed, it's…

The Explorers Club
No. CXXIV - The Gregorian calendar, devised by Aloysius Lilius and promulgated by His Holiness Pope Gregory XIII in the papal bull Inter gravissimas on 24 February 1582.

Operation AXIOM
I hope one and all enjoyed my little April Fools' Day prank, the grand unveiling of Operation AXIOM, the latest branch of CADMUS. As I have long observed, today 'twas the only time in the whole of the universe that the day was going to be the fifth of April Anno Domini 2009. The passage of days is of such tremendous importance, because when you get down to brass tacks all we have are days. Days that we let slip all too casually. I mean to change that. Operation AXIOM will be a concerted effort to mark that which makes each day unique and glorious, including the celebration of as many holidays as possible, both actual holy days and secular frolics. April Fools' Day was a great start, but then I stumbled today as I forgot to wear red to Mass. But that's okay, because like every other part of CADMUS, Operation AXIOM is ongoing. Tomorrow is a new day, another chance to make the most of our all too fleeting time on this peculiar orb.

Next up: Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter. Then Eastertide carries us through to Pentacost. Less than two months until Narwhal Day, boys and girls (23rd May); make ready.

And take a spin on the Wayback Machine for a glimpse of the long gestation of what we now know as Operation AXIOM: Wayback Machinelink.

Under the Rhodesian Sun
Color me skeptical: re-engagementlink. Skeptical, yet desperately hopeful. I pray this works.

Ooo, perhaps I could give a fictional character a Rhodesian ridgeback. I know next to nothing about the breed, but 'tis one of the last few common uses of the word Rhodesian.

Silvio-a-go-go. Oh, man, that guy is such a card. And so generous. Yet more hi-jinks: Silvo-a-go-go-go!

The Stars My Destination
Boldly going… nowhere fast: cabin feverlink.

The Rebel Black Dot Songs of the Day
The Bruce Lee Band, "Running Out of Time" from Beautiful World (T.L.A.M.)

Samstag, 4 April
The London Symphony Orchestra, Boléro from (the) London Symphony Orchestra Plays Classical Favourites (T.L.A.M.)

Freitag, 3 April
Fountains of Wayne, "She's Got a Problem" from Fountains of Wayne (T.L.A.M.)

Commentary: "I know a girl who you've got to keep an eye on."

Donnerstag, 2 April
Slo-Poke, "She Doesn't have to be Punk" from the Tasteful E.P. (T.L.A.M.)

I think April might be the most consistent of all the months, linguistically.
English: April
German: April
Dutch: April
Italian: Aprile
Portuguese: Abril
Spanish: Abril
French: Avril

"I understand what makes a woman think that any man is better than nothing. I'll just never understand what makes a woman think she's got nothing."
--Jeremy Goodwin, Sports Night

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I am so excited about Star Trek. J. J. Abrams is just so incredibly talented that after all these years, after so much wasted effort, we are finally going see Star Trek's real potential, Star Trek as it always should have been. This is going to be so cool!

The Explorers Club
No. CXXIII - The unrivaled artistic genius of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973).

The Rebel Black Dot Song of the Day
The White Stripes, "Fell In Love With a Girl" via iTombs (Bigmoose Franklin)