Thursday, September 30, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Helen and Stan

So, what should we do today, Helen?

Well, Stan, let's cherry pick Bible verses to reinforce our deeply-ingrained prejudices.

Gee, Helen, sounds like fun!

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Overheard at Table 1: Salighetti Quote About War

War is simply the admission by the aggressors that they are too impatient for the goals they could possibly achieve through diplomacy.

- Giuseppe Salinghetti

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Overheard at Table 2: Temptresses and Incels

I know it's hard to believe but some women are actually what used to be called "temptresses."

Oh man, that is such an Incel thing to say.

Sounds like it, yeah, I know, but there really are occasions where a woman will lure a guy away from his wife just for the hell of it.

Should I even be sitting here listening to you?  I feel like you're gonna get us taken out and flayed alive!

Excoriated by the PP?


Power Police

Monday, September 27, 2021

Overheard at Table 2: How to Deal with People

I have learned that nobody ever wants to be contradicted in this life.  So I just stopped.  When people are talking, saying all sorts of crazy stuff, I just stand there and nod politely, face completely impassive.  Then they feel good and eventually they leave me alone.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Overheard at Table 5: Moonlight Sonata and the Human Soul

Moonlight Sonata, considered one of the greatest pieces of music of all time (and rightly so), touches the human soul almost like no other piece of music.

But what, do we mean, by the soul?

The soul, as we have commonly understood, is that ephemeral aspect of humanity that sets us apart from all other living creatures.  We understand that other animals are alive.  We understand that plants are alive.  Also bacteria, and viruses, and single-celled organisms much too small to see.  All these are alive.

But we generally understand that they do not have souls.  As much as we wish to anthropomorphize some animals, the soul is that which sets us apart.

In contemporary times, it is quickly becoming fashionable to deny the existence of the soul.   Many people now are coming to believe that the soul simply doesn't exist.  It cannot be seen, or even adequately described, and therefore, since it cannot be defined or measured, it must be a fantasy, no?

While my personal thoughts on that rapidly increasingly popular ideology is based on my Faith, I will save such deliberation for another time.  For this piece, I would like to submit that music is evidence of a soul.  The ability for the human mind to hear a piece of music and, upon that hearing, have a deep emotional reaction - to the point of ecstatic elation or a torrent of tears - is evidence that there is, indeed, something about the human being that is different than other creatures.

Yes, it is proven that animals can react to music.  Many even make their own music.  Even plants grow better under different music (which I proved for a 7th grade science fair, when my bean plants listened to nothing but Muddy Waters or the Who's "Tommy") ... but only the human can hear a piece of music and dream of that which they have not seen, or can be inspired to paint a painting or write a poem, or assign to that music a memory of such depth that their very breath catches in their throats upon hearing.

And Moonlight Sonata, so perfect in its power, its graceful melody, its pounding insistency, this is likely one of the greatest examples.

To provide evidentiary testimony, I simply ask that you listen to the piece. close your eyes, and let the images sweep over your soul.

[concept thought of on 2011-0816.  Not written until ten years later]

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Overheard at Table 4: All Those Pesky -Ites

I know kind of a bit about the Ammonites and the Hittites, but who are the Perizzites?

They're tribes that lived off of other tribes.

Friday, September 24, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Sandwiches for the Homeless

Still remember the time during a Friday night Bible study, we used to meet at each other's houses, rotating every week, and we'd always ask the host family to invite someone over, and at Rolando's house, he had over a guy from work, who went to a different church, and I'll never forget what he said.

I think the lesson was on the Good Samaritan and taking care of the less fortunate, and this guy suddenly pops off with, "My church was handing out sandwiches to the homeless one day and I was giving this guy one and he says, 'I can make $80k a year if I want to but I just don't want to!' so I TOOK that sandwich away from him and said, 'Then go out and get a job if you want a damn sandwich!'"

And we all sat there, not really knowing what to say, because he was a guest and we're not supposed to antagonize guests, but we mumbled some weak platitudes about helping those who truly need help, and even though this was pre-Trump, the general consensus was that we needed to help the homeless but they also needed to help themselves.

And that's not Christ.  And I'm ashamed that I didn't say more that night.  I'm ashamed I didn't speak up and tell the truth: which is, we are to help others in their immediate needs, regardless of what we expect them to do and regardless of why we think they are in that position.  

Plus, fact is, the homeless guy could have had mental issues.  Also, people have pride, people need to feel like they have a sense of dignity.  That homeless guy could have said that (assuming the guest's story was real) out of some need to feel some dignity.  

But even beyond that: how can we say that we share the Word of God when we hand someone a sandwich and then rip it out of their grasp?  That's not Christ-like.  That shames Christ.  That shames everything Christ taught, about grace, about charity, about giving of ourselves.

Don't let anyone ever tell you that America is going down because they won't let kids pray in schools.  America is failing because supposed "Christians" rip sandwiches out of the mouths of the homeless.

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Lost Boys - The Tribe (2008)

Had this on my notebook, having watched it in 2011.

Don't really remember much about it, other than it seemed like a sad excuse to try to get Feldman back into making movies (who, as I recall, was actually rather decent).

But, having been 17 in 1987, and now being 41 in 2011, watching the high schoolers of today just made me feel old and who the hell needs that?

Quick read some synopses about it and found that the writer of the script had originally written it for surfing werewolves.  Studio canned it for being too close to Lost Boys.  Then the studio took up the original director's idea for a Lost Boys sequel, didn't hire the original director, had the writer re-work the script and shoved this movie out to the public.

That's Hollywood.

Lost Boys - The Tribe.PNG

This guy's review, linked here, probably sums up the movie adequately:

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Running at Lunch

Hey do you want to start running with me at lunch?

Better not.

Why not?

Cuz we work so well together.  We laugh all day and it really makes work fun.  We start running and we'll be on those jogging trails in the woods by the stream and it'll be all nice and then you'll fall and twist your ankle and then I'll help you up and then we'll start kissing and before you know it we'll have ripped each other's clothes off.

Damn!  I was just thinking about getting in shape.

Go to the gym with your wife after work.



Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: It's a Boy Girl Thing (2006)

Watched Sept 20, 2016

Found this movie in my notes, and had never written the synopsis/review.  As I recall, it was fairly cute/funny at the time, but going back and reviewing the plot, boy, how times have changed.

These days, this movie, made in 2006, would be slammed hard for being homophobic and playing into transphobic tropes.

Breakdown, a nerdy girl and a jock get switched into each other's bodies and have to navigate high school trying to be each other until they can figure out how to switch back.  Misunderstanding of each other as what is now called "cis" as well as each other's different social personas (nerd/jock) leads to comical hilarity.

In the end, they both have a deeper understanding of each other as both individuals and as their gender.

It is a "walk a mile in the other's shoes" story, that these days, as I said before, would be harshly criticized for maintaining cis-patriarchal norms.

Which actually brings us to an interesting point that, even when I watched this film a mere 7 years ago, I would not have written this blog post.  Something in our culture has shifted - hard and fast.   This tsunami of gender fluidity did not happen gradually - it opened like a floodgate.  (And I make no apologies for the water metaphor and simile, which were inspired by the word "fluidity")

Were this movie to be remade today, as it stands, it would be called "It's a Cis Thing" and if the script were to be re-written to be all inclusive (or at least, "woke") it'd be called, "It's a Fluid Thing" (which actually sounds a trifle scatological, if you ask me).

It's a Boy Girl Thing (2006) - IMDb

Monday, September 20, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: The Jokes We Tell About Marriage

I always find it just fascinating that we always have these jokes against marriage - for example, just looked these up:

1. Marriage is when a man and woman become as one. The trouble starts when they try to decide which one.

2. Grooms, once you get married remember that when you have a discussion with your future wife, always get the last two words in: "Yes, dear."

3. My wife gave birth four times and still fits in her prom dress from high school. I gave birth 0 times and I haven't fit in my pants since March.

4. Marriage is like going to a restaurant. You order what you want, then when you see what the other person has, you wish you had ordered that.

5. When a newly married man looks happy, we know why. But when a ten-year married man looks happy, we wonder why.


... and we all know more.  We've heard them all our lives.  All our sitcoms with married couples are all about how they gripe and snipe at each other.

... and we wonder, then, why there is so much divorce.  

It's not the gays ruining our marriages.  It's a culture of toxicity toward marriage, like these jokes, that ruin marriage.

... and don't even get me STARTED on the church.  The church can go on and on and on all they want about how homosexuality has ruined marriage, but the church has - for DECADES - had divorce classes.  LONG BEFORE gay marriage.  So the Church knows full well that marriage was in decline, and has even contributed to the decline - because the prevalence of "divorce recovery" instead of the focus on healing hurting marriages has also contributed to the decline of marriages within the church.

 When believers know, even subconsciously, that if they divorce their spouse, that somehow their church will help them through it, that gives them yet another thought that the devil uses to compel them to their decisions to destroy their marriage.





Sunday, September 19, 2021

Overheard at Table 4: Fools

- we need to bring back words like 'fool' - 'fool' is a good word.  really gives that extra Biblical OOMPH to words like 'idiot' or 'stupid'

- just remember that the most foolish people in the world are the fools we make of ourselves.

- what's that supposed to mean?

- case in point.

Coffee could benefit your heart and help you live longer - CNN

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Overheard at Booth 3: What I Need

... we've been together how long now? 20 years now?  Married for 17 of those years?  And you still haven't learned that I have a tough job with a bitchy boss who's giving me shit every single day and then I come home and you're all frenetic with 'hey listened to what I heard on the radio and AH!  AH!' and I need you to be calm, you're never calm, you KNOW I have a hyperactive system and the man that I need is the exact opposite of you, because I need a man who's centered and calm and you're not that and you're not the man that I need.

... but I love you anyway and everything else about you is great.

Friday, September 17, 2021

Overheard at Booth 3: Lucky Moran Discusses Husbandry - Part 2

Lucky Moran: Sooooooo, you know what I was saying about being a husband being so easy the other day.

Otis Redwing: Yeah?  You still doin' good.  Fixin' stuff before being told?

Lucky: Yeah, well, apparently those 'good feels' didn't last that long.

Otis: What'd'ya do now?

Lucky: Pinche tortillas, man.  I mean, she sends me out at frikkin' NINE at night to buy tortillas, and she doesn't like the packaged kind.  She only wants the freshly made bakery kind. But when I get there, they are out of the regular sizes and the only have two packs left of the oversized ones, and I know she hates the oversized ones, so I went and got Mission tortillas.

Otis: I see where this is going...

Lucky: So I get home and she's SCREAMING mad.  'You got the wrong ones!  Again!  I need to do the grocery shopping!  Can't trust you to do anything!'

Otis: Did you remind her about unclogging the sink?

Lucky: Yeahh, I know that wouldn't cut it.  And I tried to tell her that I only got the Mission ones because I knew she doesn't like to use the oversized ones, and then she's like, 'I always use the oversized ones' - and I'm thinking to myself, 'this is a trick, this is a mind-trick!  Been with this woman 17 years and she has NEVER liked oversized tortillas' but then she's like, reading my mind, because then she says, 'I always use whatever size, as long as they are made fresh in the bakery.  If you really paid attention to what I say, you'd know that!'

Otis: Ah, the old, 'If you really loved me, you'd ... [insert thing here].'

Lucky: Exactly.  So tell me, how do YOU do so well in your marriage.

Otis: I set low expectations early on.  Do that, and anything above that seems special.

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Lucky Moran Discusses Husbandry

Lucky Moran: Look, every guy is always 'Oh man it's so HARD to be a husband' but really, being a husband is easy.  All you gotta do is fix stuff before your wife asks. 

Otis Redwing: Fix stuff before she asks?

Lucky: Yeah.  Case in point, the other night, I unplugged her sink - pulled out all the hair clogging it - before she even asked me to.  She acted like I had just single-handedly won the Peloponnesian War!  It was awesome!

Otis: Cool.  You can come over and unplug my sink.  I'll give you a beer.

Lucky: That's just as good!

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Overheard at Table 2: Tesla Bonus

Young Man: My friend just started working for Tesla in their tire department.  He says they say if he stays there 3 years, he'll get a $400,000 bonus.

Older Man [to Older Woman]: Do you wanna call 'bullshit' or can I?

Older Woman: I believe our son.  Tesla is a great company.  They have high salaries for all positions!

Older Man: Oh God not you, too.

Young Man: Well, to be honest, they do work him to death.  Like, he's got no time for anything, just work.

Older Man: So the $400,000 might be compensation for the burnout, huh

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Peacemaker

There was a great line in the movie "The Suicide Squad" when Peacemaker says, 

"I love peace ... and I don't care how many men, women, and children I have to kill to get it."

That is such the American way.

Especially the way of Conservatives.

Monday, September 13, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Libby and Conner Discuss Feelings

Libby: I just think you need to be able to express your feelings in a healthy way.

Conner: I'll express my feelings with my fist in your FUCKIN FACE!

Libby: Yeah, that's not really what I meant.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Overheard at Table 2: My Doula

- When my ex-wife was expecting our child, she wanted a doula.  I told her to get one named "Oblongata" so that she could refer to her as "My Doula Oblongata"

- I can see why she divorced you

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Overheard at Table 1: Twentieth Anniversary of 911

Billy: SO ... it's the twentieth anniversary.

Joe: Yup.

Jim: How we gonna mark it?

Bob: With sedition, look like.

Billy: You'd think we'd'a gotten more out of what came after that day.

Joe: More like what?

Jim: I dunno, like, more unity.

Bob: There was unity, for about a month or so.

Billy: Nothin' much after that, though.

Joe: True.

Jim: Hate to say it, but it looks like they won.

Bob: Ultimately.  Yeah.

Friday, September 10, 2021

Overheard at Booth 3: Music to Write

You don't get it.  You just don't get it.  I have music in my head.  I've got stories to write.

I get it, I get it, you don't want to help around the house.  But I work just as hard as you and I can't keep up with the sweeping, the cleaning, the cooking, the laundry, while you go off and play your guitar.

That's the point: I don't PLAY MY FUCKING GUITAR!

Keep your voice down!

I - don't - play - my - guitar.  I don't write.  I don't to anything except help around the house.

Oh so that's it.  You don't want to help.

That's not what I said.  All I'm saying is that if I could just have an hour, just an hour, a day.

And you don't think I don't want an hour a day to myself?  You don't think I'd just like to relax in a hot bubble bath, drink a glass of wine and just relax?


No, because I have to clean the house or it'll never get done!

But I help you clean the house all the time!

And you do such a shitty job that I have to go behind you and redo it!

Then let me play guitar!  GOD!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Overheard at Table 4: Christian Counseling

So Gary and I are in Christian counseling, because honestly I just can't take his shit any more and I just want him gone.  But yeah, sure I agreed to go.  For the sake of the kids, and all that yadda yadda ...

and the counselor's sitting there and he's wanting us to walk through what separation would be like and he asks, "So if Gary were to move out, where do you think he should go?" and honestly all I could think of to say was "Hell is the first thing that comes to mind."

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Singles and the COVID Drought

Lucky Moran: Sometimes on Twitter, when there are a few ladies who talk about not having had sex in months or years ...

Otis Redwing: Oh yeah, that COVID drought... really hit the singles hard.

Lucky: ...sometimes, part of me, as a gentleman, you know, I want to offer my services.  But then, I think to myself, that'd be unfair.  I mean, I'm a lousy lay, and it's unfair for someone's first time back in the saddle to be such a horrible disappointment.

Otis: That ... and you've got a wife.

Lucky: That too ... I mean, at this age, I've only got enough energy to disappoint ONE woman, y'know.

Otis: Apparently I do know.  Now.

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Two Documents Every American Has an Opinion About but Which They Have Never Read

The Constitution, like the Bible, is a document that every American has an opinion about but which no one has actually read.

That's a bit harsh.

Not really.  When you understand that there are people who literally - not figuratively, but LITERALLY - spend their entire lives studying either one of them, you quickly realize that any doofus on social media who spouts off about "the founding fathers" or "the Bible was written by desert nomads" is just kinda full of shit and doesn't know a damn thing.

And a lot of times those people who spend their entire lives studying those two can be completely wrong as well.

EX-ACT-LY!  And if they can be wrong, then everyone else is even MORE wrong.

Monday, September 6, 2021

Overheard at Table 1: Earthquake

#EverydayErotica280 709 Earthquake

She said she wanted sex like an earthquake.

I said, well, the best I can do is like a sandcastle.

Mmmm, she said, on the beach, with waves hitting the shore!

I said, more like under the kids' swingset in the backyard.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Overheard at Booth 3: Going to the Gym

So, I'm now going to the gym regularly.

Good for you.

Yeah, every morning, before work.


My wife noticed that I'm always there at the same time, right before 5am and headed back home at 6am.  She thinks I'm seeing a woman there.

Well, are you?

Actually, I'm seeing three women.  Sisters.  They live in a house in Oakland, California.  They fight demons.  They're on screen 4 right above the treadmills.

Saturday, September 4, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: Are You Listening?

"All I'm saying is that I just want you to listen to me for once!"

"I am listening!  I've been listening to you tell me about your work today ... in great detail!"

"Fine then, what was I saying?  Tell me."

"You were saying how you went out to a site visit with Roger and the golf cart that you use to drive across campus almost went into a rut and then the students just showing up for class this year are always looking at their phones and never paying attention and you nearly ran into three of them just getting across campus.  Then when you got to the Library where you had to check the access controls of the doors, the Provost came out and she got all pissy because she thought you were the one who accidentally shut the door, catching her blue skirt..."



"Her skirt was GREEN!"

Friday, September 3, 2021

Overheard at Booth 3: Winter Brushes



Winter Brushes
Smooth pencil chalk marks
Against cloud-grey canvas leaves.
Winter brushes skin. 


[NOTE:photo from 2011-0527.  Original below.  First and last photos have been filtered for pencil-sketch effect]

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: What is Destroying America

 what's destroying america is this worship of the wealthy.  it sets up an unattainable goal.  you wanna be just as wealthy as the rich, and when you can't achieve it, you just feel worthless, then you think that they got their wealth by being somehow better than other people, and that turns into a worship model: their opinions matter more, their ideas are the ideas that everything thinks should be followed.  And that is what they use to make more money, to consolidate more wealth, and thus, increase their power.

and how does that destroy america?  Seems to me that only makes it stronger.

how do you figure that?

well, they got their money somehow.  That means somehow that they are just naturally smarter.  Gotta follow smart people, y'know.

talking with you, I think I might need to change my opinion.

good to hear.

yeah, the wealthy aren't what is destroying america.  It's dipshits like you who think they are worth frothing over.

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Where Did I Come From?

Small Child: Daddy, where did I come from?

Dad: Well, son, I found you in a cardboard box in a Wal-Mart parking lot.  Along with a litter of kittens.  At the time you were cuter than the others.

Small Child: Gee, thanks, Daddy!

Dad: In hindsight, though, I shoulda taken the calico.