Chemically Induced Optimism

October 29, 2005

I don’t know if it is the St. John’s Wort I’ve recently started downing in copius amounts, the vodka (also in copius amounts), or just perhaps that I am happy for once, but I thought that I should take a moment to note that I’m actually doing rather well for the time being. I don’t make many upbeat comments. . . because I’m not an optimistic person. My space on the web is saved for angry old man rants and generally melancholic articles. But, if I’m doing well for once I suppose I should note that too.

My job: they gave me a new position where I sweat my ass off just like before, which I love, only now I actually have to think and remember things as well. Make that two reasons not to come into work tragically hungover. I guess that means I’m moving on up in the manual labor world. To the east side of the warehouse, if you will. I climb a ladder sporting weird Predator wristbands on each arm that I use to scan boxes as they come by on a conveyor belt (rather than using them to kill or maim men in a jungle environment). Basically, I memorize which states go where. . . the boxes that I do have to scan, I use my Predator bands on. Then I send the boxes down one of three chutes. The middle one is manned by one or two workers who sort it onto the truck. To my right and left, well, those just get clogged up because no one is attending them. I get to climb onto the conveyor belt and kick the boxes until they fall into the trucks if things get backed up.

On my first day at the new–er job, I was avalanched by boxes filled with golfing equipment. . . My trainer dude wasn’t able to hit the button to stop the conveyor because he was pinned, and I was nearly pushed off of the stand. That part is not so cool, but it breaks up the monotony and it only happens when you’re too stupid to hit the big red button, or when someone sends a massive amount of boxes at once. The only bad part about hitting the big red button is that it stops all of the conveyors in the warehouse, and your coworkers soon become aggravated and shout at you from across the building. Be they obscenities, I do not know, but it doesn’t really matter. I am the box god, for I holdeth thy red button.

At the end of the day I go inside, copy checks and CODs, put them in envelopes and leave them for the non-labour people to send out. The people I work with are all nice (if not too nice — again I reference “You can take your shirt off if you want”), they’re intelligent, and all of them have a sense of humor. So, fuck the restaurant business, I won’t be doing anything like that again any time soon. No highschool kids, no drama created by waitresses, and I get a little respect. If only it was full time…

I ain’t no Lono

October 29, 2005

Got home from work and a rather large package from the enemy, UPS, was waiting for me. Guess who now owns The Curse of Lono? That’s right, daddy does. I don’t care if the publishers are making a fortune off of idiots like me who snatched up the book at an outrageous price because we thought it would go out of print again. . . I wanted the book and Visa gave it to me, god damn it.

culono.jpgI didn’t realize it would be so big, but I suppose since half of it is filled with Steadman’s drawings, it only makes sense. I’ve flipped through about 5 pages and I can already tell you that it is worth the $40 I paid. Full-sized pages of Ralph Steadman’s nightmarish sketches merged together with another tale of debauchery from the doctor. . . You can’t beat that.

The opening is classic HST. Somebody offers him an all expenses paid trip to Hawaii to cover a sporting event, extra cash included. Sound familiar? You have to ask, did they not know who Hunter was? They must have by then — 1980. So, then you have to wonder, were they hoping to squeeze another article out of him like the one he wrote for Rolling Stone? No, guess not — the magazine that hired him was called Running (their logo sports a happy rainbow tint), and so the only conclusion I can come to is that they knew he would go for it and they just desperately wanted a story on the Honolulu race. They didn’t care if he got drunk, went on crazy acid trips and tried to buy Orangutans while he was over there, so long as they got their running story. On the next page of Lono, what looks like a copy of HST’s typed-out letter to Steadman reads:

Dear Ralph,
I think we have a live one this time, old sport. Some dingbat up in Oregon named Perry wants to give us a month in Hawaii for Christmas and all we have to do is cover the Honolulu Marathon for his magazine, a thing called Running… Yeah, I know what you’re thinking, Ralph. You’re pacing around over there in the war room at the Old Loose Court and thinking, “Why me? And why now? Just when I’m getting respectable?” Well… let’s face it, Ralph; anybody can be respectable, especially in England. But not everybody can get paid to run like a bastard for 26 miles in some maniac hype race called the Honolulu Marathon.

From there, he informs Ralph that they will be competing in the 26 mile race and that he has also entered Ralph into a surfing competition where he will be shot off into the waves at 75MPH. Great stuff. It’s kind of sad that nobody writes actual letters to each other anymore. It’s all in phone calls or e-mails, never is it something mashed out on a typewriter or written by hand, stamped with a personal emblem. Maybe I’ll start printing my would be e-mails out and sealing my envelopes with a special wax composed of my blood and semen or something. That’ll give you something to remember me by. Gonzo fist be damned.

And now, on to, ba da da dum, LINKS OF THE DAY:

Here’s a drunk man dancing with children at a college football game. Well done, my brother, well fucking done. PS love the fanny pack.

Now you can say actually say “What’s wrong with kids these days?” and not feel like an old piece of shit. Because it’ll be a legitimate question. This fat child will not remove himself from his online Xbox game long enough to procure another glass of chocolate milk, so he shouts for his mother to get it for him. His mother refuses, perhaps knowing her little angel is becoming a land manatee of sorts and needs to move around a little. Remember, junior, the glass of chocolate milk sort of negates the .5 calories you burn walking to get it, so don’t feel too proud when your ass finally gets up. The best part is at the end. When he talks, his game character talks, so you see this grown spec ops soldier shouting to his mom to get him a glass of Nestle.

Here’s a good one. Frustrated taxi driver makes society eat his shit

Man Caught On Tape Sprinkling Fecal Matter On Pastries
A cab driver in Dallas, Texas, was allegedly caught on surveillance video sprinkling dried fecal matter on cookies and pastries at a grocery store, according to a Local 6 News.

Behrouz Nahidmobarekeh, 49, is on trial for allegedly throwing the feces on pastries at a Fiesta grocery store.

Police said that during an investigation, they found a pile of human feces by his bed. Investigators believe Nahidmobarekeh would dry the feces, either by microwave or just letting it sit out, grate it up with a cheese grater and then sprinkle it at the store.

“(We are) unable to identify him; just a young boy, maybe 3 years old, on the surveillance tape you can see him eating one of the cookies and that’s the worst part about it ,I think.”

Attorneys in the case were unclear about a motive in the case.

Prosecutors will show a surveillance videotape of the defendant, which shows him sprinkling a substance on the food.

The FBI arrested Nahidmobarekeh but turned the case over to local prosecutors after they determined it was not a national security issue.

Finally, for anybody who likes Wikipedia as much as I do, and for anyone who uses Firefox as a browser, click here and add Wikipedia to your quicksearch tab. While Google may retain the crazy librarian crown with unsurpassed amounts of knowledge, Wikipedia is nearly instantaneous in giving you some form of answer in summary and it is usually dead on. They go hand in hand.

I signed up for MySpace a while ago because it was the big buzz, and I really didn’t see what the big deal was. And I still don’t understand it. It seems like every user page on MySpace has a shitty wallpaper that causes you to convulse in horror, mtvpopdiarrhea music playing in the background, way too much information that no one is ever going to read, and really ugly text colors that render words indecipherable if someone wanted to read them anyway. On top of that, your average myspace user has 1000 “friends” on their list, all of whom they have NEVER FUCKING MET. Why add them if you aren’t going to talk to them? Do you think the MySpace Gods are going to cast down a ribbon for you to wear on your pretty little chests to display at your highschool or office space?

I await the day that shit self destructs like Friendster, and all of the attentionwhores out there have to resort to cutting their hair like the latest Reality TV star, buying the latest trendy jeans, and buying the same old shitty music that’s played on the radio to feel cool. Because at least I’m used to that.

Better yet…come on down, Bird Flu, and teach this generation that they aren’t 100% plastic like Paris Fucking Hilton.

Goddess Bunny?

October 24, 2005

You know, none of us get to control how we come into this earth, nor what family we’re born to, so I try to stay fairly open minded. I’m not really one to judge. But this video scares the shit out of me:

Maybe it has less to do with the puppet-like movement of the boney girl and more to do with the grainy camcorder footage and the tap-tap-tapping against the pavement. Even worse is the Michael Jackson Thriller Walk she executes at the end of the video. It terrifies me. Happy Halloween, I guess. He/She/It also has a movie out.

Oh my name it is Sam Hall chimney sweep / Oh my name it is Sam Hall and I’ve robbed both great and small / And my neck will pay for all when I die, when I die /And my neck will pay for all when I die”
-Irish folk song

Today I bring you The Old Bailey. Their version of “On This Day” is why they are one of my favorite websites:

On This Day in 1714…
Mary Randal was found murdered and tied up on a bed with a clout stuffed down her throat

Think of it as a modern People’s Court. I found it a couple of years ago when I was searching for information on the Bailey name. For anyone that is curious, it’s either someone who lived near the Bailey of the castle, or “a crown official or officer of the king in county or town. Keeper of a royal building or house. A person of high rank. From the Old French for ‘bailiff’ and/or the Scottish term ‘bailie,’ a municipal officer corresponding to an English alderman.” Probably boring to anyone who isn’t a Bailey and to many Bailey’s alike. Anyway, the Old Bailey, otherwise known as The Central Criminal Court, is a court house in London, named so because of its positioning…where the Bailey (outer wall) of the castle used to be.

The interesting thing about the website is that they have court documents dating back to 1674, proving that people have been fucked up for ages. There are perverts sexually abusing 11 year olds, spoon thieves, and nipple-stabbers, some of which I will cover in a moment.

Here’s one example of theft:

Anne Hughes of the Parish of St. Dunstans in the West, was tryed for stealing a quarter of an ell of Holland value 18 d one yard of Cambrick 3 s. one Scarf 6 d. one pair of Shoes 12 d. the Goods of Gabriel Collins . It appeared that the Prisoner had been a Servant to Mr. Collins, and took away the Goods, which were found in her Box; which matter being fully prov’d against her, and that when she was apprehended she made an attempt to cut her own Throat, but was prevented by some in the House; she was found Guilty 10 d.

Sentence: Public Whipping

So you can imagine in January of 1690, on a cold winter’s day, a servant in a household stole a scarf and a pair of shoes among other things and was then caught. Confronted with it, she rushed to find a knife to slit her throat, but was stopped before she could go through with it. She was sentenced to public whipping and undoubtedly lost her job and became a dirty whore of sorts, selling her body on the mean streets of London. See? It’s like a soap opera, only a lot more interesting. And it actually happened one day, long ago.

Now for a killing:

N – Y – was Indicted for killing one B – S – with a Rapier giving him a Wound near to his right Pap, of which he died . The Evidence deposed, That the Prisoner was found lying upon the ground sorely wounded, and making further search, there was found a dead Man, but no one could tell who kill’d him: The Prisoner made a good Defence, and called some Witness, who declared that the deceased had threatned very often to be the death of him, and that he had no malice against him, but that he set upon him, and he was forc’d to stand in his own defence, yet being not able to prove it, he was found guilty of Manslaughter

Sentence: Branding

Guy A threatens guy B over something or another, maybe he’s a stalker, who knows. Finally he comes after guy B, who in turn stabs A’s nipple and kills him. That’s the Pap, Ye Ole Dictionary says so. The killer was sentenced to branding for manslaughter rather than murder, although I’m not sure why, seeing as the court says there is no proof of self defense. Old Bailey on branding:

Convicts who successfully pleaded benefit of clergy, and those found guilty of manslaughter instead of murder, were branded on the thumb (with a “T” for theft, “F” for felon, or “M” for murder), so that they would be unable to receive this benefit more than once. The branding took place in the courtroom at the end of the sessions in front of spectators. It is alleged that sometimes criminals convicted of petty theft, or those who were able to bribe the executioner, had the branding iron applied when it was cold.

For a short time, between 1699 and January 1707, convicted thieves were branded on the cheek in order to increase the deterrent effect of the punishment, but this rendered convicts unemployable and in 1707 the practice reverted to branding on the thumb. It is possible to search separately to find those sentenced to be branded on the cheek.

The last convict sentenced to branding at the Old Bailey was in 1789.

Sounds much like the modern branding – the permanent record – except a little more embarrassing.

For a common occurence, I give you a tankard theft. People really liked stealing tankards, I’ve seen quite a few references to them. It makes sense. I suppose if you’re going to steal something, you might as well be able to drink alcohol out of it. Good thinking!

Michael Hall was Tryed for stealing a Silver Tankard from one Martha Parnel , widow, value 5l. on the 28th July last, the Matter was plain against him; how that he came to the House of Mrs Parnel, and after having staid a small time there he Run away with the Tankard: So he was found Guilty.

Sentence: Branding

I hope he got a few good drinks in.

This one is kind of sad:

William Carter was Tryed for Picking the Pocket of Matthew Deane in Smithfield, whilst he stood there selling Cattle , on the 19th of August. The Prisoner Confest it before Sir William Turner , that he took it out of Mr. Deane’s Pocket, but he denied it at his Tryal; yet he was found guilty of Felony.

Sentence: Death

I don’t know if Carter was executed or not. The Old Bailey says that most executions were not carried out. But, just because I couldn’t find his name on an execution list doesn’t mean he wasn’t killed for snatching something from a farmer’s pocket.

Here’s some spoon theft with a little bit of marriage drama:

Jane Browne was Indicted for stealing a Silver Spoon value 10 s. from one Mr. Thomas Allum . The Evidence for the King was, That the said Browne being taken on suspicion and carried before a Justice of Peace, she confessed the Fact saying, That her Husband told her, that he would knock her on the Head, unless she would steal something from the said Allum. Which being fully and positively proved against the Prisoner, the Jury brought her in Guilty of Felony, to the value of Nine shillings .

Why the hell you would steal a spoon and then blame it on your husband is beyond me, but it sounds like something that you would see today on Cops, only the spoon would be stolen for crack and the woman would be found wearing a neon pink tanktop and stained daisy dukes.

Finally, here is a long story featuring a murdered hunchback bird keeper who lived in a cellar with his family. A tale of sorrow, if ever there was one. You can read the full version here, which is really interesting. Here are some excerpts:

John Girle was indicted for the wilful murder of Thomas Roberts , Aug. 16, 1755.*

At the request of the prisoner the witnesses were examined separate.

Sarah Roberts . The prisoner came to sell my husband, the deceased, some birds, on the 16th of August last, about six or seven o’clock in the afternoon.

Q. Where do you live?

S. Roberts. I live next door to the Bishop of Ely’s Head , in a cellar in Holbourn. My husband was in the cellar, and I was sitting at the door. The prisoner asked my husband if he wanted any birds, and he said no.

Q. What was your husband’s business?

S. Roberts. He dealt in birds, being a cripple. The prisoner said, D – n you, you hump-back son of a bitch, if you was up stairs I’d punch both your eyes out. I said, sure you would not, take your answer and go about your business, we do not want any birds. He directly put a crab tree stick down into the window, and broke a cage that hung there. I went to push him away from doing farther damage. My husband came up stairs, and the prisoner made no more to do but put the crab-tree stick over my shoulder, and push’d his eye out.

Q. What did you do to him?

S. Roberts. I only push’d him away from the window.

Q. How long was the stick?

S. Roberts. I believe it might be about two yards and a half long.

Q. How near was your husband to you?

S. Roberts. He was pretty near me.

Q. Which eye did it go into?

S. Roberts. His left eye. My husband said, Stop the rogue, my eye is out. I directly turn’d my head, and saw the blood and jelly of his eye running down his cheek.

The cripple’s eye poked out, his wife attended to him with egg white, which I can only assume created an infection. I don’t see how it could do any good. He lingered for some 6 months enduring convulsions before dying a monstrously shitty death.

S. Roberts. I don’t know that. I dressed my husband’s eye with white of eggs and rose-water, for having a great family, and great rent to pay, I could not afford to go to a surgeon. From that time he never was well, nor ever held up his head; be was always complaining of his eye, and a shooting in his head.

Q. When did he die?

S. Roberts. He died the last day of March last. A few hours before he died he said to me, My dear, hang that rogue, for he is the death of me; he never could do any thing after, but I maintained him.

Q. What did he mean by that rogue?

S. Roberts. That was Jack Girle .

Q. What do you think was the occasion of his death?

S. Roberts. I think the blow on his eye was. He never had a convulsion fit till the time of the hurt of his eye, and after that he had such strong convulsion fits that several people were obliged to hold him.

Q. What state of health was he in before?

S. Roberts. He was in a very good one before that.

Prisoner. The deceased ran up stairs, and struck me two or three times

Q. Did your husband strike the prisoner at the bar?

S. Roberts. He never struck him, nor gave him a word in anger.

Q. Did your husband punch him?

S. Roberts. No, nor touch him neither.

Prisoner. He follow’d me 9 or 10 yards.

S. Roberts. My husband was not two yards from the door, when it was done.

I love how the killer shifts from claiming that he was punched, to that he was followed, and then later, he claimed the following:

Q. from prisoner. Had he no other distemper about a fortnight before he died?

Brown. No. none.

Prisoner. They say he had a fever.

Court. That will do you no service at all, if this injury occasioned it.

Basically the court intervened and told him he was an idiot. Then, they sentenced him to death. The clincher was probably when the owner of the cellar, the shop keeper above, spoke as a witness to the murder of the “hump-back son of a bitch.”

Q. How did it appear to you?

Powel. It was very bloody, and the sight appeared to be out. He had such strong convulsions with the agony, that several people could hardly hold him.

Q. Did you see the deceased offer to strike or push the prisoner?

Powel. No, I did not; he did not the least in the world.

Q. How long did he live after this?

Powel. He lived I believe five or six months afterwards, and then died.

Q. What sort of a stick was it done with?

Powel. It was a long crab stick, five foot high, with knots upon it.

So, how is that for a life? Ridiculed for being a cripple, living in a cellar with your wife and children, peddling birds because you have no other trade, then being stabbed in the eye with a crab stick by some lunatic bastard who wanted to pawn off some birds to you, only to linger in pain and agony for six months until your death because you couldn’t afford a surgeon.

Heigh Ho

October 17, 2005

It’s never safe to be nostalgic about something until you’re absolutely certain there’s no chance of its coming back.”
Bill Vaughn

Got a call this morning and was offered the job in the evening instead of the one in the early morning, which sounds better to me. I’m grateful that I don’t have to walk to work in the dark at 2:30 am, and I’m especially grateful I don’t have to walk home (at least not yet) after moving all of those boxes around.

The job is, well, it’s like unloading all of the boxes from your Ryder truck on a moving day, and then helping your neighbors with theirs, as quickly as you can. I have big red cuts from the brilliant douchebag who waas throwing boxes at me and a couple bruises too, and my back, well let’s not bother. Unloading a truck full of 50 pound boxes is not my forte, but I’ll deal with it for now. It is, after all, nice to be making money.

At least taking a manual labor job like this puts things into perspective. Coming home after getting my ass kicked to see Laguna Beach on the TV, where a bunch of rich girls lie around in the sun, blab on their cell phones about their loser boyfriends and spend their parents’ money makes me want to murder someone. May they all be hit by a truck. A Mack truck with big fuckin’ KC lights and a sign on the front with “YOU ARE FILTH” written on it in pigs blood. At least I see what it will be like for the rest of my life if I don’t go to college or join the military…instead of a comfortable desk tucked in the corner of an office building somewhere I’ll be moving boxes around for 7 something an hour. Who is it that claims youth is such a time to be cherished, anyway? Making decisions that effect the rest of your life is not fun, it is not easy. Working your ass off to work your way up through some system, that isn’t easy. Sounds like pure nostalgia to me. The bright side is that I have a chance, unlike a lot of people. I guess that’s something. Or so someone would eventually tell me if I didn’t stop bitching about all of this.

I do work with some interesting people, I can’t neglect to mention that. Well, one person in specific. One of the first things my coworker said to me as he placed a box onto the conveyor belt was “Yeah, see these boxes? Most of these have bras in them, and panties. ” Why he felt compelled to share that with me in such an excited manner, I’m not sure. . . but I didn’t feel very good about it.

Later, he would assure me that if I was hot, I could take my shirt off. “You can take your shirt off if you want!”
You can take your shirt off if you want!”
“You can take your shirt off if you want…”
“Yeah, man, I’m not that hot. Thanks.”
Jesus!, I thought. It would take some sort of sick pervert to want to see my saggy bitchtits. No gay man I know would want any part of this.

Oh, and those arrows that point right side up…the FRAGILE warning printed in huge black letters? Don’t mean shit. If they mean anything at all, they must have two different definitions. In your house, it means that you should scoot the box carefully across your floor, right side up, and then delicately open the top with a pair of scissors, hoping not to break anything. In the warehouse, it apparently means “this box is too big and I’m going to roll it over and over continuously until it falls off of the truck.” Fragile is a foreign word to your every day package handler, and there is no such thing as right side up. Just use lots of bubble wrap this Christmas, that’s all I’m saying.

Hell Is Other People

October 17, 2005

Hell just got bigger. I wonder how many gas guzzling SUVs it takes to transport this family of Jesus loving freaks of nature from place to place. Again, I’m forced to ask myself why people feel the need to breed, or at least, why they feel the need to have more than 1 or 2 children. Aren’t 2 of your mutants enough to help ruin the world? What is your goal, Arkansas Whale Woman? It’s not like we’re in the Great Depression again where every child could get a job and help the family. This isn’t the 12th century where half of them are going to fall ill and die. They’re probably all going to live, and we’re all the worse for it. The only credit I can give Mrs. Goodyear Blimp is that she conceived naturally, unlike the throngs of other couples out there giving birth to octuplet test tube babies, as I’ve written about before.

As far as I’m concerned, the only hope for our earth as of yet is
-more natural disasters resulting in billions dead
-war resulting in billions dead
-plague resulting in billions dead

Or if we’re really lucky, all 3 at the same time. Then having 16 bible belt babies will be helpful, because we’ll need them to collect the corpses out of the streets. I only hope it happens soon so that earth can rid itself of the ever-multiplying parasite that is human before it does any more damage. This is already a shitty world to live in, next it will be a struggle just to exist. 6 billion and counting.