Location: Indianapolis, Indiana, United States

I'm just trying to develop an online body of work (even if the work is throwaway nonsense) to advance my writing career.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Scared of Voting

If Rush Limbaugh says Michael J. Fox isn't taking his medication for Parkinson's disease, how can anyone argue? After all, if anyone knows prescription medication... Besides, I think Limbaugh was right. Fox isn't taking his meds, he's selling them. To Rush Limbaugh.

Is the election over yet? Local offices are the worst. Who cares what political party the coroner is? Has anyone's quality of life been adversely affected by a Democratic coroner? What about a Republican dog catcher? What a total waste of time. Of course, the main reason we started having to vote for what should be purely anonymous administrative positions is because city governments would hand out jobs to unqualified friends or relatives. Uncle Duke never passed the bar, but he did once mop the floor at the law school, and besides, he's really good at garnering self-promoting headlines, so why not make him prosecutor? The prosecutors should be elected, but ideally without any party affiliations. Such a system would have drawbacks, too, but it couldn't be any worse than the current arrangement. And anyway, all prosecutor races around the country seem to take place between the same two candidates: the crooked lawyer versus the lying rodent. Their debates often demonstrate a stunning lack of intrigue.

Lying rodent: This man allows criminals to go free and commit more crimes. I witnessed it yesterday.

Crooked lawyer: We released someone from jail and he was walking across the street.

Lying rodent: You mean he was jaywalking across the street. Where were you when that man was breaking the law yet again?

Crooked lawyer: Taking bribes in my office.

The names of political offices should be changed to the most well-known person ever to hold that position. For example, the office of Sheriff could be changed to the Andy Taylor, the Matt Dillon or the Wyatt Earp, Prosecutor might be the Hamilton Berger Office, and so on. This would not only add name recognition to the races, but would give the winners something to live up to and, hopefully, shoot for. In fact, a Wisconsin candidate for Sheriff has already changed his name to Andy Griffith as a vote-getting ploy, but something about it doesn't seem right, sort of like changing your name to Harrison Ford if you want to be an adventurous archaeologist.

With the NBA season fast approaching, I'd like to make my predictions.

1. The best basketball will be played when almost no one is watching.

2. The worst basketball will be played during the playoffs when two defensive oriented teams meet and a brickfest ensues. The broadcasters will rave about what a great game it is while the rest of us scratch our heads.

3. Great shotmakers like Alex English, George Gervin, Adrian Dantley, John Williamson, Dominique Wilkins and Bernard King will remain a thing of the past.

4. Talented and versatile players like LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, Kevin Garnett and Tim Duncan will be assets to the league, but the emphasis on hybridization and resistance to put players into traditional positions will remain an overall hindrance. Special players, past and present (Oscar Robertson, Jerry West, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Garnett, James and Wade), can defy categorization, but slightly lesser players of whom too much is expected (Stephon Marbury, Billy Owens, Lamar Odom) should learn their strengths and settle into a position, at least until they excel at it. This problem is especially troubling among point guards, most of whom have a shoot first mentality. This wouldn't be the end of the world if they could switch over to the pass first frame of mind according to game situations, but they seem to struggle with this.

5. No one will care about my predictions, whether they all prove true or false, but then, not many will care about the NBA, either, which is sad. It has plenty of warts, but it isn't as bad as many of its critics claim, and certianly no worse than the other major sports.

Good night.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Who's Really to Blame?

Carol Channing, Whitney Houston, Maury Povich, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, Evan Meacham, John Ashcroft, Severus Snape, Billy Carter, Cher, David Hemmings, Elmer Fudd, Alger Hiss, Ashlee Simpson, Helmut Kohl, Scott Hizer, Leo Durocher, John Dean, Anse Bundren, Nikki Sixx, Margaret Thatcher, R. Kelly, Gene Simmons, Ted Kennedy, Alan Thicke, Tempest Bledsoe, Menudo, Dan Rather, Pol Pot, Kevin Federline, Thomas Midgely Jr, Joe Christmas, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Spiro Agnew, Bill O'Reilly, Vlad the Impaler, Anne Rice, Ptolemy, David Lee Roth, Shaun Cassidy, Phil McGraw, Edgar Cayce, Emperor Palpatine, Lil' Jon, Abbie Hoffman, Clarence Thomas, Adolph Rupp, Barney Rubble, Meredith Viera, Phyllis Schlafly, Larry King, Ann Coulter, Neil Diamond, Neil Sedaka, Neil Schon, Neil Young, David Soul, Simon Cowell, Anna Nicole Smith, Georges Clemenceau, Oliver Cromwell, Howard Holt, Florence Henderson, Charles Dickens, Larry the Cable Guy, Laurence Olivier, Larry Linville, Larry Hagman, Bruce Tinsley, Garry Trudeau, Candace Bergen, Jack Straw, Bob Eubanks, you, me, and Terry McMillan.

Many people ask who is really to blame for things? For all the problems, the mishaps, the trouble, the tragedies, the horrors and the frustrations. Well, wonder no longer because you've just read the official list. Having read it, the reader is likely to have some questions. I'll try to answer as many as possible.

Q: Why aren't any Presidents on the list?
A: I'm giving them a break, for one thing. Secondly, it's common knowledge that Presidents mess everything up and the title is who's really to blame, not who's to blame that everyone already knows about.

Q: What if I don't agree with all your selections?
A: How can you? It's my list. Make your own.

Q: Did you just make some of those names up?
A: Yes.

Q: May I add some names of my own in the comments section?
A: No, you may not! Who am I kidding? I can't stop you and besides, even my mother doesn't read this blog!

Q: Does it really matter who's to blame?
A: Irrelevant question.

Q: What do you have against guys named Neil and Larry?
A: Listen, Neil, I've already explained this to you, so bug off!

Q: Did you forget Osama Bin Laden?
A: I did, but see the first question. We all know it's his fault to start with.

Q: What if I have questions that don't appear on this list?
A: Then you only have yourself to blame.

Coming soon... si kosa langu.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Carmen Miranda vs. Arizona

Indiana Pacers' swingman Stephen Jackson will probably end up with some kind of community service following an ugly incident at a night club recently. A good service to the community would be shooting former Florida congressman Mark Foley--and anyone who molested him, if Foley's claims are true--but of course, Jackson would probably miss. What's all the fuss over Jackson's actions anyway? So he went 0 for 5. What else is new?

John Lennon's birthday has passed and thankfully I was nowhere near a radio the whole day. Nothing like hearing "Imagine" 500 times! The radio executive version of that classic seems to be: "Imagine that John Lennon... wrote only just one song" Amazing that a songwriter as prolific and diverse as Lennon seems to have been reduced by radio to a ballad singer, just one more thing for him to be bitter about if he were still alive.

I try to write about positive developments in Africa, as the continent seems to receive very little attention except when it comes to devastation and horror. But this slice of horror is difficult to look past without comment. It seems Wolde-Michael Meshesha, an investigating judge in Ethiopia, has determined police shot or strangled 193 people during a protest against election fraud last year; this figure represents about three times the number initially reported by the government. If the government is willing to admit the police murder defenseless people, why would it be coy about how many? No doubt foreign investors champing at the bit to do business in Ethiopia were appeased by the government's report last year.

Government: Two hundred people killed? Whaddya mean two hundred? The cops only killed about sixty five.
Foreign Investor (to his venture capitalist friend): See? It's no big deal. Only sixty five people were killed.
Venture Capitalist: How many is sixty five?

What's with Ethiopia, anyway? Like Bangladesh, the nation seems cursed with a combination of ill luck, gross mismanagement and freqeuent interenational indifference. There were the Concert for Bangladesh, We Are the World and Live Aid, but what happens on a day to day basis to lift places like this out of squalor? It's a shame, really. Ethiopia is one of the world's oldest, most beautiful and most storied countries, and yet remains mired in a cycle of misery.

There's always a group of parents outraged about something--rap songs, video games, cheerleading, Harry Potter books and role playing games--but yet to incur the wrath of the busybody-officious-tell-others-how-to-live-pretend-to-be-a-good-parent-when-I'm-really-just-a-meddler crowd is Zydeco music. Just say the name out loud, parents. Doesn't it sound like something evil lurks within such a moniker? Zydeco! Clifton Chenier. Queen Ida and the Bon Temps Zydeco Band. Get with it, concerned parents. The real demon of our society is being allowed to flourish unobserved.

I'm just trying to help.