Got any bread, man?
The other day I had to go to the Legion Club to help someone with a project. The guy paid me in beer, bless his heart… I drank Miller Lites (shush — it’s all they had) on his tab all night. Wheee! It was fun. I enjoyed myself…
“Ve need to stop und buy groceries on the way home,” my beloved Viennese Snowflake Dagmar said as we got in the car to leave. She slid behind the steering wheel and continued, “Do you tink you can handle valking through the grocery store, mister ‘Just One More Beer Please’?”
“Yeah,” I said from the passenger seat, stifling a hiccup. “Yes, I c’n go grocery shopping.”
“Und you’re not goink to yell at the stock boy for raising the prices?”
“I’ll try not to,” I said, my fingers crossed.
Within minutes Dagmar was leading me by hand into the local food market. She grabbed a cart, looked me in the eye, and said, “I’m going to go buy groceries for the week. You go find something colorful to look at and don’t vander off.” I nodded, and off she went.
Ten minutes later I met her up front by the cash registers. “Vhat do you have there?” she asked me. “What’s all dat stuff?”
“I found some stuff,” I said, my arms full. “I’m hungry.”
“You vant a loaf of Italian bread, a loaf of French bread, a bag of bagels, wheat crackers and some croutons?” she asked.
“I’m hungry for carbs,” I said.
“You’ll never eat all that,” she replied. “Let’s put some of it back…”
“NO,” I blurted. “No. I’m hungry. I want bread.”
“Okay… But if we have to next week feed ten dollars worth of stale bread to the birds I’m going to laugh at you.”
That was days ago. I’ve eaten nothing but bread since. I’m sick of bread. I don’t want any more bread. I don’t like bread. But I’m NOT going to admit defeat. I will, however, stipulate that one should probably not go grocery shopping after drinking beer…
I just got an e-mail forwarded me from a friend of mine bashing a political candidate. A quick check on snopes.com verified what I had thought — the forwarded e-mail was pretty much entirely wrong.
I don’t mind political discourse. In fact I like it, though I’ve kind of been staying out of political thought the past month or two, simply ’cause I’m too busy to do the research necessary to write original political theses, and I rarely write about issues without checking the facts.
But candidate-bashing is not political discourse. Especially when the facts are wrong.
It really raises my blood pressure and, to be honest, makes me mad as hell when these e-mails hit my in-box. It only takes thirty seconds to check the facts… Why can’t people check FIRST, rather than making me do it? Gaaaahhhh! And, of course, when I send an e-mail back to the person saying, “I’m sorry, but the e-mail you sent me was incorrect, here’s the correct information,” I know they’re NOT going to read it, and they’re NOT going to send a retraction to everyone in their address book — because they want to believe what the e-mail said so badly they’re willing to let the lies lie.
The truth should not be sacrificed. I just got done defending Hillary Clinton, and I don’t even like her much. (Go Richardson.)
(Note: After I wrote this, I checked my e-mail. Sure enough, there was a message from my friend, the one who send the message that prompted this little rant. “I should have checked this before I sent it to you,” he said. “It sounded too extreme to be true. Thanks for correcting me.” He’s a good man.)
I’m so used to going through computer switchboards (“Press 1 to talk to the morons, or press 2 to talk to the idiots…”) that I just about panicked when I called my wife’s new work number and a real live human being answered the phone. A receptionist.
“Hello, this is Company A, may I direct your call please?”
Caught completely unprepared to talk to someone in the “Not My Wife” class of humanity, I had no idea what to say. A normal person would probably have said something like, “Hello, may I speak to Dagmar please?” or “Can you connect me to the new lady with the European accent?” But all I could think of was, “Duuaaaahhhhhmmmmm…”
“Sir? Are you okay?”
“Gaaaahhh… You’re a human, aren’t you? Like, wow… Sorry. Um, can I talk to my wife?”
“That would depend on, like, who your wife is, now, wouldn’t it?”
I have the distinct feeling that the nice lady who answered the phone will be wondering to herself the next time she sees my lovely, elegant and very intelligent wife just how poor Dagmar got saddled with such an ignorant (by the way, that’s pronounced “ignernt” around here) boob for a husband. My poor wife. I’ll have to do something nice for her to make up for it. Maybe I’ll give her a nice loaf of bread or something…
A national embarrassment
Hey, you know how the Nazis controlled the German population? The same way the Soviet Union kept generations of citizens under control, and the same way many Islamic nations in the Mideast handle their populace… Childhood indoctrination, coupled with hatred. Teach children to hate a group of people and they will continue that hatred, no matter how illogical, through adulthood. The Nazies taught their citizens to hate and fear the Jewish population. The Soviets taught their population to hate and fear capitalists. The fundamental Islamic nations seem to be teaching hatred and fear of Christians. (Please note, Jews, capitalists, and Christians are all, last I checked, human beings.)
We don’t do that here in the United States, though. We’re open-minded. We realize that hatred fosters naught but violence and ignernts. The nation is already feeling fractured and fragmented due to the war in Iraq and a government that seems uncaring at best, cruel at worst. We’re America, after all. We’re understanding, enlightened people. Aren’t we?
We need this like we need a hole in the head. “Yay, let’s teach our children to hate and fear HALF of our own population, and distrust an entire political philosophy. Yes, that will unite us…”
I’m not a big fan of the Republican party. They simply don’t reflect my personal values. But I’d like to think that I’d blanch a bit if I saw a book like this targeted against conservatives. I wouldn’t want to see a book like this targeted against any group.
Children understand a lot, but let’s leave politics out of the nursery, shall we? It can’t do anything but make them distrustful, hateful and fearful. There’s enough to distrust and fear out there without this sort of thing… Let the children grow up first. If you teach your children honestly and well, they’ll turn out just fine. They can make up their political mind when they’re old enough to decide for themselves.
Slightly on the same topic, sort of… The book mentioned above deals with two children trying to start a lemonade stand (from what I’ve seen on the Internet — I have not read the book). The children are hassled by the bad liberal who comes and demands half their money in taxes. I’d like to think that the book would point out that without taxes, we’d have no roads, no schools, no water, no sewers… Personally, I’m pretty happy to pay my taxes, simply because I know I’d have to pay a helluva lot more to flush my toilet if the sewers were run by the same people who run the insurance, oil and power companies.