Indecision may or may not be my problem
Jimmy Buffett

Ambrosia Studies by Olivia

Click images for desktop size: “Ambrosia Studies” by Olivia
It’s been an eventful week. Mostly depressing but with a bright spot that hints at glories to come.
The Man WHo Murdered Himself
My job just keeps getting worse. I piled up over 13 hours of overtime and, even with taxes, got a check that will ensure I’ll be able to pay the immigration lawyer on time. No small thing.
I hate being the manager. Responsibilities for people who I would not choose to hire but with the wages being offered it is probably the best I can hope for.It doesn’t help that my regard for the owners is low so I can’t work up any concern for my co-workers ineptness even if they do make my life difficult and ungainly.
Yesterday I got a panic call because the toilet was out of order. Three hours later, and thinking why am I in here, sweating and doing plumbing repairs? That stint pushed me over 40 hours for the week and I took off 8 hours to go to the doctor!
They call me constantly. I keep telling them that they should be able to figure out most of this stuff themselves but, clearly, they figure for the pittance they receive (especially in comparison to the income they generate) thinking is an additional skill that isn’t being paid for.
That was exacerbated by passing out an “employee manual” that lists 4 pages of reasons to fire us and two pages explaining that they don’t do business over state lines so we are not protected by Federal labor laws (a strongly debatable point, actually a bold lying interpretation of the business) As a right to work state we have no right to paid holidays, sick days, vacation days, coffee breaks or even lunch breaks. Real inspiring stuff. Great laws too.

The doctor was depressing even though it was basically pretty good news. Nothing much has really Running Buffalo by Charles Russell

Click images for desktop size: “Running Buffalo” by Charles Russell
changed. I still need to take a diuretic or else my feet swell up and the skin gets so taut it hurts! This is because of the lyrica, a drug they’ve decided I’m allergic to. As this is one of the known side effects I’m disgruntled that claiming it’s an allergy that did me permanent damage is somehow my fault. A weakness and not some drug company pushing out a dangerous product and advertising it on TV.
The depressing bit was that I now have to be on two types of insulin for the diabetes (which was a known side effect to the first chemo I had – I like to tell people I’m allergic to sugar). The Lantus is the long term insulin, one shot is supposed to last 24 hours. The new one, also ungodly Hercules Against the Moon Men expensive, is short term and I have to shoot myself up every time I eat . . . It is hard to get excited about sticking needles into your stomach four times a day. For me the hardest part will be keeping the little vial straight and not over or under injecting myself with the wrong stuff.
The doc said I look good, still no indication I’m as sick as I am. Which is good. The people I work around have a propensity for attacking the weak. I still tacitly terrify most of them.

The bright spot is that my wife finally spoke to the immigration lawyer. She thought he sounded sexy. I still have no feminine side so I couldn’t think of how to confirm or deny whether he is sexy!
I was surprised to discover she was afraid of talking to him. They spent a jaunty twenty minutes deciding if she was a secret commie war criminal trying to enter the USA to avoid prosecution for genocide and other war crimes . . . I feel secure that Homeland Security and Obama are wasting our money protecting us from these guys.
The end result is the lawyer sees her having no problems with the interview and he submitted the applications and now this week we’ll get the date for our interviews. They have to be separate so we can’t get together and practice our answers or write crib notes or something else that the USA needs protecting from . . . The lawyer nearly promised (as lawyers are wont to do) that my wife and I would be together before Christmas and he seems determined to make it happen.
Cool.

The Best Laid Plans

Woman Wailing for her Demon Lover by Hannes Bok

Click images for desktop size: “Woman Wailing For Her Demon Lover” by Hannes Bok
So, I’ve been manager for two weeks and it sucks . . . What makes it worse is that the customers like me so business is up about 7% and about 20% on my shift, which means I’m even busier in a job I hate which really sucks.
Hentai It didn’t help that I put in 50 hours last week and no day off. I was told I was going to get a “write up” for working too much overtime. That makes so little sense to me I don’t want anyone to explain it to me.
Maybe things will be better when I get the next paycheck, but I doubt it sincerely.

Some fundamentalist Christian stranger went to a bit of trouble to get my e-mail address to chastise me for criticizing St Thomas Aquinas. I thought only Catholics recognized Saints. Shows a lack of knowledge of other religions on my part I guess.
So the church made him a saint. They took away St Christopher’s sainthood but I still have his medal. The church says the Pope is infallible but they took away St Christopher’s sainthood. I’ll stand by my opinion.
My memory is that Aquinas was the first guy ever canonized with no miracles to his claim or credit. And I also remember that he wasn’t canonized for his inane opinions about animals having the soul of a table, he was sainted for teaching and setting up the seminary process to churn out more and better priests. And the Catholic Church is reaping the benefits of that today.
There’s also no mention of how Aquinas survived with his contemporary who proceeded him into sainthood, St Francis. Francis proclaimed not only did animals have souls but that all creatures were his brothers and sisters in God and Christ. He preached to birds, wolves and dogs so that they might Untitled by John R Neil

Click images for desktop size: “Untitled” by John R Neil
also have redemption and enter heaven.
So when it comes to saints I’ll still to the fallen Christopher and St Francis and look at Aquinas as a political creation.
Once I lived with 4 dogs, 2 rabbits, a cockatoo, finches, a rescued sparrow and hummingbird (they’d fallen from their nests and refused to be released to the wild). When I’d come home they all had to come to me and meet me at the door, primarily to complain about the others in the house.
The sparrow liked to climb into my shirt pocket and have me tote him around. The dogs were always the most upset. The birds loved to take baths in their water dishes which drove the dogs insane and the rabbits. Well, I was convinced that the rabbits have more intelligence then most think or have the courage to accept. The rabbits would wait for the dogs to fall asleep and then they would stalk them on tip toe (!). Then when they were close enough they’d spring in the air and land right on the dog’s stomach!Grizzly
In the ensuing commotion the rabbit would run for all he was worth with the dog in hot barking pursuit. The rabbit always went for the bed. He ‘d go under it. When I looked under the bed what I’d see was the dog desperately trying to get at the bunny. For his part the bunny was munching calmly and contentedly on a piece of alfalfa he’d previously placed there; munching about 2 inches from the dog’s grasping jaws.
I have no idea why the rabbits thought this was a great joke and I also know that the dogs held no grudges as they would often sleep with the rabbits sleeping tightly against the dog’s stomachs.
Now I still think that the dog’s ability to forgive both the birds for using their water bowls as bath tubs and the rabbits for their violent practical jokes show that they have souls. If forgiveness and loving other creatures aren’t the foundations of having a soul then what good is a soul at all?

My puppy remains happy. She wants things that I don’t always understand. I’m lucky she can be patient with me, in an impatient way of course. She hasn’t made up her mind about how she feels about my new schedule. She likes me being home at night but misses me being there during the day. Another consideration of our future I guess.

And I’ve been having a wonderful time hacking my nook. I’ve added an email client to it. I tried it as a full fledged Android tablet and was not impressed. I prefer the Nook but with added features! Right now I’ve been rereading “Lone Wolf and Cub” I’m on volume 10 of 28!

To kill the Bhudda you must be a Bhudda
Kazuo Koike

Eerie 1967 by Frank Frazetta
Click images for desktop size: “Eerie 1967” by Frank Frazetta
I was watching “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” and there was this really ancient guy who they’re debating whether he was killed or suicided. The solution was that he couldn’t have suicided! He tookChristine Keeler Affair 14 pills a day! That was the only fact they needed.
I take 14 pills a day.

My puppy got a bath on Friday. She spent all of Friday hating me and blaming me. Of course she waited until I had rescued her from the sadistic groomer! Then its safe to hate me.
Can’t blame her for that.
She looks great. She’s been blowing coat in this maddening heat. They got her all brushed out, nails trimmed. She’s just as beautiful as I imagine her.
I can never get over how easily she forgives me for the wrongs, and the perceived wrongs, I’ve done her. My puppy cares about me, rejoices in me.
It’s reciprocal.

I suppose the biggest deal this week though is my job.
They fired the supervisor for theft. I was surprised and disappointed by that. And then shocked by the depth and amount of the theft, as well as the duration.
I’ve successfully avoided any sort of supervisor/management responsibilities at this job but this time, as much as I tried to avoid it, I’m stuck.
At first I thought I was going to get out of it easily. Thier initial offer of a promotion would have entailed a fifty cent an hour DECREASE in my current salary. Somehow they were unaware that I already earned more than the mamgers and supervisors.
Flux by MX Steel
Click images for desktop size: “Flux” by MX Steel
They fixed the offer and made a few other concessions so now I’m it.
The major thing for me is going back to working during the day. I start at 8:00 AM now instead of midnight. I’m hoping this does something to fix my constant fatigue. Maybe not but who knows.
It will be an adjustment I figure. No longer moving quietly through the dark nights and no longer dealing with crack heads and drunks with a violent attitude. Or at least not dealing with them when they’re in full roar to their addictions.
I figure the little bit of extra money will go to the immigration lawyers.

I looked over the battlefield that used to be my home town and I saw God and the Devil shaking hands

Martian Landscape with Geezistines by Hannes Bok
Click images for desktop size: “Martian Landscape with Geezlesteins” by Hannes Bok

They caught the guy who robbed me.
Caught is probably too strong a word. He heard there was a warrant out for him so he went and turned himself in. He came in with a lawyer and claimed he wasn’t there and that the crime was Antibodies committed by his evil twin brother . . . I’m not making that up.
His alibi almost made me feel sorry for him.
The cop who came to tell me this seemed awfully expansive for 2 AM so I let him talk. I asked how the guy even knew there was a warrant out for him. It seemed like an odd knowledge to possess. Crime is such a labyrinth but I couldn’t figure out how you could know there was a warrant out on you since that usually isn’t in the newspaper or such. It seemed like it would have to be a guilty conscious.
Nothing like that. It seems the security guard who works with me has a deep police fantasy and he went to the internet and got his picture and then posted it around to the different places his company works. Kind of seems unfair and sort of illegal and invasive. Anyway the robber’s aunt saw the flyer and told the robber about it. Which makes it seem that the cops did even less than I originally imagined.
They’re holding the robber for $300,000 bail, which means, I think, that you have to come up with a bondsman and $30,000! It seems high. The cop said the judge set it high because the guy did 8 years for a previous armed robbery with a shooting and because the charge of an ex-felon possessing a firearm was more serious than the robbery! There’s also the feeling that since he’s been busted twice for armed robbery he has probably done several they can’t pin on him.
The cop went on about how “these guys” can’t be trusted and ex-felons never changed. He was deep WW II
Click images for desktop size: “WWII” by Unknown
into his list of nasty derogatory comments with the security guard in obnoxious idol worshipping agreement when I finally had to interrupt.
I said, “I disagree with that. People can change. If they can’t then what’s the sense . . . “
The cop said, “Some can change, but not many, not enough.” Before he could get involved in explaining and before I ended up in an argument about responsibility and fair mindedness and cop ineptness I had enough sense to disengage and get back to work.
I’ve never liked cops.
They turn into the things they hate.

You think cause I work for a living that I’m a jerk?
I Kuan

Kabegami by Kumo
Click images for desktop size: “Kuomo 31” by Kabegami
I got robbed this week. No big drama and no excitement. I suppose, considering, that is a good thing.
Work normally quiets down after 6. I was sitting on the stool staring when a guy wearing a hockey Amazons Against Superman mask came through the door. He was kind of fat so he didn’t move very quickly.
He came to the window and stuck his arms through the slot. He had a gun I guessed as a .25 automatic, real cheapo nickel plated saturday night special kind of gun, exactly the type that I think should be illegal to purchase or own. In his other hand he had a black gym bag. He said, “Put the money in the bag or you’re dead!”
There’s video of the whole thing and after he said that I take a long pause. The cops watching it said to me, “Thinking about taking him out, huh?”
That wasn’t totally accurate, but close enough for small town cops. What I was thinking was, “I can’t believe Antonio is robbing me and waving a gun in my face. Jerk. And shoving his arms through the window. That’s insulting. I could stab him with this pen and he’d drop the gun quickly enough. Ah, hell. It’s not my money and there’s not that much of it anyway. We’ve had employees steal more than he’s going to get and there are other people here and my wife would kill me if I get shot and my puppy needs to go for a walk. I’ll just give him the money. I better not ask why he’s doing this. He’d shoot me for recognizing him probably or shoot somebody else. That would be worse. Not really but it would feel like it was worse.”
So I gave him the money and he left. Idiot strew money from the window all the way to his car.
Problem for him is that even with the hockey mask I recognized him pretty plainly and then there’s video of him putting on the mask. Turns out he served 8 years for armed robbery already and he’s got a court appearance in May on a drug charge. And he’s not yet 30 years old.
Kill My Illusions by ClasixArt
Click images for desktop size: “Kill My Illusions” by ClasixArt
Problem for me is that he’s a regular customer. That night he hung out in the store for 4 hours, probably waiting. He wasn’t a friend. I’m not friends with any of the customers. But we were friendly. I’m annoyed that someone who I know and who knows me would rob me and threaten me. It shakes what little faith I have in mankind even more.
Of course I still had to deal with the concerns that I was hardly devastated or panicked over the robbery. I have to remember to say things but, for me, other than the way I took it personally, it had little impact on me.
If I’d gotten shot I’d think about it differently I suppose but no one was hurt, the warrants are issued to pick the guy up. What more is there to it?

It looks like I’m going to do a study which is not a trial. I’ve done trials. Trials are only good when the alternative is sure death.Another Man's Poison
This is a study. A trial is where they think this will work but they’re not quite certain of how or what the side effects will be. A study is when the drug has been approved and is on sale. The study is to insure something that’s important to the drug company.
This study is for a diabetes drug called Juvenita or something close to that. It’s a drug that the doc’s wanted to give me but it is too expensive!
The purpose of the study is to avoid getting sued in case the drug causes heart attacks.
It’s a five year study, which I take as proof positive that I’ll live at least another 5 years. That’s scientific logic that is. Unless I get shot, that is.
I get sixty bucks a quarter and a free supply of the drug, unless I hit the study group in which case I get the placebo. Fifty-fifty shot on that. Of course I want the drug. It’s supposedly very good and will drive down my daily insulin dosage etc.
Human Frieght Train by NFL FIlms
Click images for desktop size: “Human Freight Train” by NFl Films
I go this Friday for the blood tests. Cool.

I’m going to start to experiment and turn comments on. The spammers might hit it too hard but then, they may have all gone away! Yeah. Like that’ll happen. I still average about 150 spam hits an hour but they seem to have different objectives. The spiders that don’t obey, or respect, htaccess files worry me. But I miss comments. Like some fellow went through a lot of grief to reach me to tell me that I’d misspelled an artists name. And it was a major misspelling too, like I touch typed with my fingers on the wrong keys sort of thing.

Eighty percent of success is showing up
Woody Allen

Seasons Greeting 2010 by Ankhammentu

Click images for desktop size: “Seasons Greetings 2010” by Ankhammentu
After too long I’ve finally seen a good movie, in fact it might be the best film I’ve seen in 2010.
“I Saw the Devil” directed by Ji-woon Kim. He’s the guy who made the stunning “A Bittersweet Life”Calvin and Hobbes and the Asian mega-hit, “The Good, The Bad and the Weird”.
Byung-hun Lee, from “A Bittersweet Life” and GI Joe, plays a Korean secret agent. On a snowy night his fiancee calls him. Her car has broken down and she waits for a tow truck. Lee, even though on assignment, finds a place to sing her a love song, to keep her company while she waits.
While Lee sings a good samaritan knocks on his fiancee’s car’s window. He offers to help. Lee tells her to stay in the car and not to trust the stranger. The stranger is played by Min-sik Choi, the brilliant actor best known from “Old Boy”.
Lee tells his fiancee to send him away and to just sit and wait for the tow truck. Very politely and sweetly she thanks Choi and tells him she’d prefer to wait. He seems to go away. Moments after she hangs up the phone Choi attacks her car with a hammer breaking out the windows and then dragging her into his van. In his van he bashes her skull with the hammer but he waits to kill her back in his dingy dungeon where he rapes and decapitates her. Choi brushes the gore down the basement drain.
The next day a child finds a plastic bag with the fiancee’s ear in it. The fiancee was the daughter of the local cops Chief of Detectives. This engenders a full on search. With much angst and fanfare they discover her head in the shallows of a river. Clearly it was thrown from a bridge. Implicitly this brings up the old Buddhist sutra, “I would be a bridge of stone for 500 years for the chance of her crossing me.”
Kim takes two weeks off from work, supposedly to recover from his grief but, and this is true of John Lennon

Click images for desktop size: “John Lennon” by Unknown
much of the film – not much is stated outright except the ignorant claims of the police and the killers – the rest of the time we’re nudged into believing we know what is going on in others minds, everyone knows he is going after the serial killer.
Even though we know who the killer is we watch Kim try and locate him. The first suspect he tortures brutally and so thoroughly that the scum confesses two murders he did commit to the police!
The hunt continues and it is sickly fascinating. Until Kim finally tracks down Choi in the middle of another rape and murder.
Kim rescues the girl but stops to smash and beat Choi. When he has beaten him near senseless he whispers to CHoi, “That which is coming will be even more terrible. Then Kim breaks Choi’s arm. He also shoves a GPS capsule into his mouth so he can track him.
What follows is the disintegration of Kim. The atrocities he heaps up on Choi are transfixing and brutal. Kim, ultra cool and suave and Choi filthy and perverted, we find ourselves willing for Kim toPopeye simply kill Choi.
Then, unexpectedly, Choi proves his monstrous character has a brain and enough heart to hate and to want revenge.
From here on the movie stays taut, frightening and disheartening. It’s not until the blistering conclusion, a conclusion that could scarcely be improved but still falls inches short, that we see humanity resurrect itself in these two monsters. The humanity it shows is as terribly sad as the depths of its depravity were hateful.
A movie to seek out. the direction and the acting could not be improved. It’s a modern movie that avoids nothing and permits no mere coincidence to mar the terror it inflicts on our souls as it struggles to force us, the viewers, to admit or frail humanity.

The law that should have shut down my job went in to effect, but it only worked for 2 days.
I was disappointed. While one judge in a different district found the law shutting them down to be solid and enforceable another judge swallowed the argument that 1 line in the law was too vague and in its vagueness violated the 1st amendment!!
So it’s business as usual. I got two days off though and that’s a good thing . . . without pay of course. Money buys everything.

My wife is coming next week along with gentle dog and Giant dog.
We’re excited.
I sent out my Christmas cards. If you didn’t get one it’s because I don’t have your address, so it really is all your fault.

Now that the college season is over the NFL gets that more important. Last week I was 12-4, which Skyler Steele

Click images for desktop size: “Skye Steele as Red Santa”
is pretty blah for this part of the season. I want to win a prize! Even a 20 buck certificate for beer and hot dogs would be okay1 So long as I get a prize! My wife made some picks . . .
My picks are in bold.

Indianapolis at Tennessee – I figured the Colts were slightly less messed up than the Titans.

Cleveland at Buffalo – Cruddy game of the week and also my Mini-Upset of the week. To me the Bills have looked more impressive when they’re losing than the Browns have while they’re losing . . .

Tampa Bay at Washington – Common sense says to take the Bucs. Sometimes I wish I could tell my common sense to shut up because I really think the Redskins should win!

Atlanta at Carolina – I really wish I could track down anyone willing to pick the putrid Panthers. Santa Calus Conquers the Martians They probably think Jimmy Clausen is a great QB . . .

Oakland at Jacksonville – At the start of the season no one could have picked this as a game of the week contender. But it is. I’m taking the Jaguars because of Jack Del Rio and that they’re at home.

Green Bay at Detroit – The Packers will win but I expect the Lions to make this a lot more interesting than it should be.

Cincinnati at Pittsburgh – This game is on TV here. I won’t watch it. I have to pick the Steelers but I want to see the Bengals and Carson and Ochocinco tear it up!

St Louis at New Orleans – Its time for the Saints to start tearing opponents apart, at least if they want to get to the Super Bowl again.

Seattle at San Francisco – I never figured the SeaHawks would be as good as 6-6 but I sure figured the 49er’s would be league killers! Now I’m picking them becasue the SeaHawks have not been too good on the road.

Miami at New York Jets – After the Jets getting beat down last week by the Patriots I’d hate to be their opponent this week.

Denver at Arizona – Cruddiest Game of the Week!
Star Leaves by Fabio Toscani

Click images for desktop size: “Star Leaves” by Fabio Toscani

Kansas City at San Diego – After the dismal showing last week the Chargers will not improve much but the Chiefs don’t have Matt Cassel so . . . .
New England at Chicago – Game of the Week! The Bears have been shocking and the Patriots are riddled enough on D to make this one really really interesting!

New York Giants at Minnesota – When the big stories are the snow storm and whether Favre’s streak ends tomorrow you know not to expect much from the game.

Baltimore at Houston – The Ravens need a win and the Texans are playing for next years paycheck.

Philadelphia 28 at Dallas 27 – The Over Hype Bowl. This game will be dire.

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible
Dalai Lama

Space Travel by Virgil Finlay

Click images for desktop size: “Space Travel” by Virgil Finlay
Thanksgiving was pretty much a non-event. I had to work from Midnight till 8 AM that morning then had to be back at work at 10:30 that evening. Not much holiday for me.One Way Ticket to Hell
I had dinner. I got some frozen TV Turkey dinners. Between involuntary naps I watched the football, watched “Broadway Danny Rose” (for the Thanksgiving dinner) and listened to “Alice’s Restaurant” the big song about Thanksgiving.
My puppy and I watched and listened and ate our “frozen turkeys”, and all was well.
Except of course I still have the worst job I’ve ever had in my life. That I’ve had it a year and a half speaks more to the economy than to my sense of duty or endurance.
The job ends Tuesday. Yay!
A Superior Court Judge found for my employer. He agrees that the law violates the First Amendment!! But only in spirit, not in intent. He did not give an injunction to stop the law going into effect, he refined the law to not violate the First Amendment but to still take the addictive circumspect edges of my employer’s product. The product is gambling but it really isn’t, it’s just a wonderful virtual sort of gambling that is as addictive as the real thing. Talk to any of my less than well educated customers and you’ll easily discover that the illusion is so well done that they refuse to believe they are not gambling, despite signs, forms they have to sign and verbal admonitions that they are not gambling, they still think they are.
It ends Tuesday. The owners think they won but have at least enough sense to realize that without the gambling illusion and the possible prohibition of 24 hour business days they’re not sitting on the clandestine gold mine they were.
Me. I could care less. I’m more pleased to be out of work. It scares me but it does not alarm me as much as this job continuing.
I’ve never been anyplace for so long where I made no friends and met no one to provide some Joan Crawford

Click images for desktop size: “Joan Crawford”
pleasant memories of the place no matter how bad the situation or environment was.

I’ve managed to stop the spam on this web site. The was I did it was to change the permissions on the script that activated comments. The spammers never visited the site. They used a script to execute my script and post their spam quickly and more efficiently.
By disabling the script I’m get massive error messages from the server, but nothing serious. I’m hoping that shortly the error messages will fade out and that the spammers will just go away. When that happens, or at least slows, I can then reactivate the script and permit comments. I hope so. I miss them.

But for the NFL my weekends would be , well, just fine actually but I love football so lets get into it.
I was 3-0 for the Thanksgiving Day games. So was my wife. I taught her well. Except for the Notorious cheating. She taught herself that!
Through today we are both at 103 correct picks for the season.
My picks are in bold.

Green Bay at Atlanta – Game of the Day. And the most meaningful game of the weekend. The Falcons are studly at home so I’m picking the Packers in my upset of the week! They have more pressure on them to need this game.

Pittsburgh at Buffalo – The Steelers season is in danger. They won’t let up on the Bills.
Dream Days by Maxfield Parrish

Click images for desktop size: “Dream Days” by M Parrish

Philadelphia at Chicago – The bruisingest game of the day! The Eagles match up to well with the Bears. This could be a blow out.

Carolina at Cleveland – Cruddy game of the week.

Jacksonville at New York Giants – I’d pick the Jaguars at a neutral site but have to take the Giants at home. Still I have expect Jack Del Rio and the Jags to stomp the Giants.

Minnesota at Washington – I can’t ignore the stat that interim coaches win 66% of their first games. But the Vikings are so busted up and the Redskins are still in playoff contention. It’s hard to not take the Redskins.

Tampa Bay at Baltimore – The Ravens are still a tight shot for the Super Bowl. Tampa Bay is just moving in the right direction. Should be a good game.

Tennessee at Houston – The Titans are a mess. They’re grateful the Vikings fired their head coach to take some of the media attention off of their screwed up situation. I don’t think much of the Where the Wild Roses Grow by TitusBoy

Click images for desktop size: “Where the Wild Roses Grow” by TitusBoy
Texans but they should be able to take advantage of the situation.

Kansas City at Seattle – My second upset pick. The SeaHawks look strong at home and the Chiefs are just a team moving in the right direction. They could win but they’ll have to play better football to do it.

Miami at Oakland – The Dolphins are still too busted up to put together a game while the Raiders are working hard.

St Louis at Denver – Sam Bradford has made the Rams legitimate but Mile High Stadium is the biggest home field advantage in sports. I don’t think the rams have improved enough to win a shoot out here.The Passionate Plumber

San Francisco at Arizona – The 49ers season has crumbled to dust. The Cardinals destroyed themselves. So two teams, one with shattered hopes and pride, the other full of egos and arrogance. Eh.

San Diego 34 at Indianapolis 30 – Picking against the Colts in a nationally broadcast game when they’re at home is silly but the Chargers look stronger and are healthier. I’ll probably regret picking them.

USC 50 Washington State 16

Pin Up by Unknown

Click images for desktop size: “Pin Up” by Unknown
It’s been a dead dull if sweaty week. Too much heat. Numbs the mind makes life seem like a distant thing.
Only bright spot is that I finally got my wife’s immigration application filed. I worry about that. The way the Republicans Mad Love and the racist Teabaggers are determined to destroy America, (Why did the Koch brothers and Rupert Murdoch decide to swipe the name of a pretty sleazy sex act for their creation? Was it some very nasty joke played by some rich nasty jerks on some stupid nasty morons?) I fret over the idea of her coming here. If racism and hatred are going to rule and turn us to a 3rd world banana republic she’d be better off staying where she is.
Still looking for a new job. It’s discouraging but necessary. My paycheck for 20 hours late this week. It’s one thing to be chattel and quite another to be treated as chattel.
I got my flu shot.
And now I wait.
At least there’s football.

The first two weeks of the NFL season have been horrid. It is some of the worst football I’ve ever seen in my life. Sloppy routes, lazy QB reads, runners missing holes and defenders ignoring their gaps. Clearly the first team needed a lot more reps!
The NFL plan to take two practice games and turn them into real games is just going to cheat the fans and reduce the quality of the game
Still I was 12-4 in my picks last week. My wife made her picks two. She game in that she refuses to Outsiders

Click images for desktop size: “Outsiders” by Marvel Comics
concede her total and irrevocable defeat!

My picks are in bold.

San Francisco at Kansas City – Who’d have figured the 49ers would be 0-2 and the Chiefs would be 2-0. Matt Cassell has shown that USC back ups are more talented than most starters. His leadership for the previous hapless Chiefs is credible. The 49ers are against the wall. This week they should play the football they’re capable of.

Detroit at Minnesota – Nearly the cruddy game of the week. Favre should be catching up enough now to beat the shell shocked Lions.

Buffalo at New England – I liked that Tom Brady owed up to his poor play leading to the Patriots loss to the Jets. Bad news for the Bills, he’ll prove it won’t happen again.

Atlanta at New Orleans – Game of the week. Matt Ryan and Tony Gonzalez against Dru Brees. Oh Lost Horizon yeah!

Tennessee at New York Giants – The Giants are heavy favorites which amazes me. They’ve played horrid football no matter what their level of talent. The Titans looked terrible last week but you have to figure they’re going to rebound. They match up well against the Giants too.

Cleveland at Baltimore – The Ravens should destroy a team that looks like its already upset about not getting the number 1 pick last year.

Dallas at Houston – I think the Texans are a badly coached team but I also think the Cowboys are poorly coached and have the most over rated talent in the league. The Texans are rolling and can overcome a desperate Cowboys team who will quit in the face of adversity.

Pittsburgh at Tampa Bay – Forget all my negative feelings about the Steelers – Troy Polamonu has that D playing inspired crippling clean football. The Buccaneers are beside themselves that they’re 2-0. Today is reality check day.

Cincinnati at Carolina – The Panthers are starting Jimmy Clausen . . .

Philadelphia at Jacksonville – The Eagles are heavy favorites. The claim is that Michael Vick is playing the best football in the league. I dispute that slightly. He is a great player but a miserable excuse for a human being. He has not made repartitions as he promised. Meanwhile Jack Del Rio has a decent team in the Jaguars and a lot to prove.

Oppossed Fates by snyp

Click images for desktop size: “Opposed Fates” by snyp
Washington at St Louis – Cruddy game of the week contender. McNabb looks like a steal for the redskins who are still a horribly coached team but the Rams are just hapless except for Steve Jackson who can win a game single handedly even now, just not today.

Indianapolis at Denver – A real head scratcher here. The Colts have looked lackadaisical except for Manning. The Broncos have to recover from a suicide of a 22 year old WR. Hard to read the impact there. This is a real coin toss of a game for reasons, that sadly have little to do with football.

Oakland at Arizona – Cruddy game of the week. When a head coach figures he’s more important than the players you can’t expect much better than a .500 season. The Cardinal won’t make anywhere near that record. The Raiders still stink but less than in past years.Mask of Dimitrios

San Diego at Seattle – The Chargers are heavy favorites. But Seattle is a miserable road trip and the Chargers are really missing Tomlinson’s leadership skills. This just feels like a time for an upset.

Green Bay at Chicago – This should be a good game unless the Packers start running away with it. The Bears have demolished themselves in the past two years and no reason to think they’ve ended that spiral.

New York Jets 17 at Miami 13 – Tie Breaker Game. The Jets pulled it together and demolished the more talented Patriots last week. They’ll keep playing gritty hard edged games. I like them.

USC 32 Minnesota 21

Nude

Click images for desktop size: “Nude” by Unknown
A few months ago there was a murder homicide at the cardiac clinic where I have to go. The clinic is about 2 blocks from where I live. It’s on one of the busiest streets in town, a ridiculously large 6Legacy lane street that meanders from downtown to nowhere.
This fellow had just broken up with a receptionist at the clinic. He walked in and shot her twice in the chest and then he walked out.
About 4 hours later they found the killer. He’d parked his car along the other busy street the served the clinic and he was hunkering down in the bushes. Why it took 4 hours to find him when he was about 200 yards from the clinic parked on a street, half nosed into a ditch and impeding traffic, traffic that logically should have contained a few cops, I can’t really figure out.
About 6 cars surrounded the guy, blocking the street. They exchanged some fire and then the killer shot himself in the head. None of the 50 shots the sheriff and cops had fired seem to have hit anything except the bushes the killer was hiding in. It’s pretty easy to see why he gave up.
Funny thing is, this small town is always in the top ten of the best places to live in the USA. Imagine that. It’s been number one a few times.

Interesting week at work.
The owner of the “internet cafe” is a revolting man, in appearance, actions words and probably thought. He’s about 5′ 7″, and about 320 pounds. He breathes heavily walking about 20 feet.
His hair, and skin are greasy, as if they were oozing golden butter. He has one of those scraggly beards that 18 year old hipsters wore in the 80’s. Over all the impression he gives off is cartoonish. This is reinforced by the ever present Blue tooth earpiece and the constant flourishing of his Moan in Blue by J3 Concepts

Click images for desktop size: “Moan in Blue” by J3 Concepts
Blackberry. He has to flourish it as it never seems to ring.
But looking at him and the straining pants and shirt buttons he doesn’t remind me so much of a beach ball but of a grease spot on an asphalt road.
He’s not particularly bright, clearly he’s undereducated but he stumbled onto something and like all people he feels his genius has rewarded him with all this money because he deserves it.
Maybe one day he’ll learn but not today. He says his bank account is short $60,000 and that means we stole it from him. When I asked how he knew his bank account was short I was rebuffed. Clearly he figures I couldn’t understand the delicacies of a bank reconciliation, or else he didn’t know what he was talking about.
They said that I was short $1,000. I thought that was stupidity/ Examining the figures it seems the made a mistake. No body apologized for calling me a thief.
Maybe in his mind he thought he did. He basically called me an idiot because I contended that LinuxKing of the Pecos was more secure than Windows. He claimed to know hackers who routinely hacked linux systems. It was so easy I guess he was implying he did it all the time too.
Even after showing him the huge gap in his logic that disproved I was short $1,000 he was still adamant that his bank account was still short 60K. I could see no way that we could short his bank account but I lack his mathematical acumen and about 150 of his Garland And Astaire

Click images for desktop size: “Garland & Astaire”
pounds.
The end result of his genius is that he’s fired everyone except me and his manager. That he trusts the manager is a testimony to his genius and the fact that I’m labor and would never rat out a co-worker. In fact when they asked for me to defend myself I could think of nothing to defend so I defended my co-workers pointing out what was wrong with the job and how they’d held steady and firm. That probably wasn’t brilliant of me but I was pretty angry at his assaults on everyone.
So, there’s two out of 7 left. Stupid. It might be a house cleaning. I can see that little brain working that out. I’m hard to replace only because I work the midnight shift and am, however stupid, not terrified of the drug dealers, the hookers and pimps. I survive.
the manager will survive because she threw everyone under the bus. Including me. She kept screaming that I told her that about the middle of September they’d be accusing us of robbing them blind. I said it because it was obvious and to give her and everyone a gentle push to stop stealing Just a Dream by TitusBoy

Click images for desktop size: “Just a Dream” by TitusBoy
from the till. Instead of taking my warning to be cool for what it was she tried to interpret it as some semiotic placement that I knew that all this money shortage would show up now.
It’s stupid. The job is cruddy and still the 2nd worst job I’ve ever had. It’s not worth fighting for. I would have given notice but these type of people don’t understand honor, probity and integrity. How can they when they evince none of their own. I figure they’d go, “AH HAH! He stole the non-existent money and now he’s running away!” These kind of people think like that because they can’t imagine anyone being different or having different motivations than themselves.
I’m looking for another job. I’m stressed because even a bad job is better than no job, but not unduly stressed.

Last week my football picks led me to a 9-7 record. My biggest failing was underestimating the Patriots and thinking the Colts could win forever.Kiss in Attack of the Phantoms
But at least I beat my wife. She, poor thing, had a terrible 10-6 record for the week. She also failed on the survivor game. I think this week was her best chance at winning and since she couldn’t it will be a long season for her.

My picks are in bold.

Miami at Minnesota – My survivor pick. For the Vikings, Favre has had another week of practice and Adrien Petersen has had an extra 3 days of rest. The Viking D looks poised and ready. The Dolphins offense was pathetic last week, and look like they have no answers.

Arizona at Atlanta – Arizona looked as horrid as you’d figure last week while the Falcons played a solid game against an inspired Steelers defense. The Steelers got lucky and the Falcons got disgusted. Just disgusted enough to take it out on the Cardinals.

Baltimore at Cincinnati – Game of the week. After getting manhandled by the Patriots a lot of people are writing off the Bengals. The Ravens are a heavy road favorite. I can’t see it. The Ravens are already old and banged up, the Bengals are now certainly aware of what they need to do to win.

Kansas City at Cleveland – The Chiefs were a team I picked against last week. They played strong inspired football. They’re not quite good enough to afford a let down and the Browns, well, the only way they’ll beat anyone this season is if their opponents are looking past them.

Chicago at Dallas – The Cowboys are heavy favorites and while the Bears are not a good football Night Sweats

Click images for desktop size: “Night Sweats” by Unknown
team the Cowboys looked like rubbish against the Redskins. They committed more bad and inept plays than I thought possible for even a decent high school teams. The Bears still need some wide receivers. Cruddy game of the week.

Philadelphia at Detroit – The Eagles look like a game team and that’s about it. Michael Vick starting for them makes me want them to lose. The Lions lost Matt Stafford, their starting QB. WIthout him it looks like a long day.

Buffalo at Green Bay – This should be my Survivor pick this week, but you only get to pick a team once for the season and I figure I’ll need the Packers later on. The Bills will show up and think its warmer in Wisconsin than in New York.

Pittsburgh at Tennessee – The Steelers got real lucky last week. The luck can’t last forever. The Killer's Kiss Titans Vince Young was very very classy in the Reggie Bush debacle when he had no reason to be so. The Titans still have a solid team and could pound the Steelers and would do it in a classy way.

Tampa Bay at Carolina – Cruddy game of the year potential here. Who’ll win? Who cares? Taking the home team.

Seattle at Denver – Pete Carroll pulled of a small miracle last week, thrashing the trendy 49ers! He’s going to be interesting to watch all season. The Broncos find it hard to lose at home.

St Louis at Oakland – If you’re wondering how Chicago -Dallas beats out these two games for cruddy honors this week its because these 4 teams are expected to be bad. Anything positive absolutely glows in relation to the cruddy level of play. Still doesn’t mean I’d watch or care about them.
Untitled by Nathan Fox

Click images for desktop size: “Untitled” by Nathan Fox

New England at New York Jets – I don’t think Mark Sanchez is as bad a QB as he was last week, nor do I think the Jets are as cruddy a team as they appeared. You have to wonder if the Patriots are as good as they looked! I’m thinking they are. This game is game of the week stuff. These two teams sincerely dislike each other. It will be great!

Jacksonville at San Diego – The Chargers are heavy favorites. Hard to figure why. They looked pretty dismal getting hammered last week while the Jaguars looked strong and gutsy. Picking the home team as they do seem loaded with talent but I’m tempted to take the Jaguars.

Houston at Washington – The Texans finally managed to beat the Colts. As the Redskins looked asLifeboat poor as the Cowboys they did get the win, but they’ll need to play much better and more consistent ball to beat these guys. Donavan McNabb still has the juice but his line is going to wither under the Texan pass rush. The Redskins only hope is the Texan coach is no genius.

New Orleans at San Francisco – Dru Brees! This game will probably be a lot closer than people imagine. The 49er’s have a lot to prove, but the Saints are still so “Oh baby!” they make my heart song.

New York Giants at Indianapolis – Brother vs Brother. Eh, who cares. Colts are in disarray but the Giants are too. Going with the home team.

The future has a way of arriving unannounced
George Will

Catronics
Click images for desktop size: “Catronics” by Unknown
So much time has passed and so much life has filled and so much has run out.
I don’t want any of it to be lost.The Grapes of Wrath
Nothing earth shattering perhaps. All of it precious. The only way to try and retain it is to start from now and work back.
My wife left yesterday. It was 4 months since we last saw each other. The hellish attitudes of imaginary lines drawn in the sand. Only someone who has never travelled could not question the stupidity that are borders and immigrants. I understand about the stupidity when it benefits a few of the wealthy. For the most part borders help only a few and hurt the rest of us.
It was good her being here. It felt like my life had been in suspension. WIth her being here it seemed like life resumed. It was easy, natural and profound and permanent.
We didn’t accomplish much. She brought my two dogs with me. Gentle dog bit me and continued his 4 year quest of trying to kill me.
The giant dog was a bit of a creep. He attacked, not viciously but still, a smaller dog and frightened a child. Giant dog does a lot of things that normally I find unforgivable, but he always seduces me back by being dumb and guileless.
My wife’s trip was planned around getting things done. We sort of did that, just not very well. We looked at houses.
The previous favorite was a noxious looking home farmhouse looking thing that was on 2.24 acres. As falling apart and ratty as the house was all the land made it beautiful. I could see fencing off an acre for the trio and then using the final acre to build a kennel and dog runs for all the strays and lost puppies that would find their way to out welcoming door.
The second place was a tiny little thing. I’d discounted it before as thieves were stealing the aluminum siding off of houses in the neighborhood, stealing the siding while people still lived there. Edge of Heaven by TitusBoy
Click images for desktop size: “Edge of Heaven” by TitusBoy
This house already had the central conditioning unit stolen with plenty of beer cans scattered about so you’d have no doubt about the neighborhood’s attractions..
The house looked cute, 10 foot ceilings, interesting floor plan but it was an unmitigated disaster created by the cynical greed only a “developer” could create in their lust. The guy bought the house for 28k and jacked up the fallen floors, ignored the termites, slapped on some paint and before he was finished put it on the market for 130k, expecting the old 1000% return on a little bit of work and investment.
Then the crash happened. When we got into the house the first thing I found was the notice from the sheriff about unpaid property taxes. Then noticed that the floor had bowed, badly. It seems the floor sagged. Instead of repairing it properly the developer just jacked up the sag. Settling in less than a year caused the floor to warp crazy house style.
The killer was the roof. A month ago the roof looked okay. Now it was warped badly too. Badly Hamlet enough to need not just replacing, but rebuilding, from the struts and joists up. In other words in a year the house would need about 70k in repairs. So that some right wing bastard could realize a 500% return on his investment and stick some dreamy eyed couple with a disaster that would leave them homeless.
We did find a house though. A big house with a big yard. One acre yard. We’ll know if we can get a mortgage tomorrow; August 2.
Jim McMahon
Click images for desktop size: “Jim McMahon”
I saw a lawyer about bringing my wife down here from that great foreign estate up north. Borders are the stupidest thing man ever created. Property lines to create jobs and unrest. Homeland Security now handles immigration so it is, of course a total mess. But it has to be gone through. We’re no longer a free country. We’re held waiting for the pogrom by all the cowards and fearful whiners who want to go back to the Monroe Doctrine and rewrite history to suit their fantasy.
I’m getting redundant redundant.

My wife reads. Sometimes literature, most often cook books and more often than that gory thrillers. I worry about her feeding her insatiable appetite for books then there was a deal on woot.com for a Kindle 2 . . . . I got it. It arrived DOA. I was pretty disappointed. Then shocked that Amazon made the thing good sending me a replacement on overnight delivery! And trusting me to return the dead one! It almost made up for the 3 hours on the phone with various tech support people.
I was still pretty skeptical but the end result is that rather rapidly I fell in love with the Kindle. I remembered when things were bad it was communicating with books that kept me sane®. I Untitled
Click images for desktop size: “Untitled” by Unknown
remember bad times when I’d pick up a book and let it take me away. The Kindle is not a replacement for books (like the iPod is replacement for a CD payer) but its an enjoyable way to read. In short order I read 4 books. One of my Destroyer series, a Johnny Bogg’s western; “Northfield”, Chandler’s “The Big Sleep” and something I’ve forgotten.
Point is that it was transparent. It didn’t feel like an electronic device. It felt like reading and all that reading entails. I was loathe to give it up when my wife arrived. She got stuck in it right away too reading and finishing that Dacre Stoker sequel to Dracula.
She likes it and that’s what’s important.
It’s lighter than a book, easy to carry around (still buy all the cases like with an iPod) and it carries a library with it. Whispernet is simply cool.
Me, I’m waiting on another special to get either a Nook or a Kindle for myself. I’m leaning towardsA Hard Day's Night the new Kindle 3 but with lawyers and immigration fees its quite a ways off for now.

One of the reasons everything has to wait is that I’ve been legislated out of a job . . . Its not that bad a thing. My job is horrid and abusive in every way. I’m surrounded by gambling addicts. Personally I don’t believe in making laws to protect people from themselves. The legislators used faulty data from the State Police who have just been busted for massive ethics violations to claim these places cause an increase in crime.
The voted, the governor signed the bill. December 1 I’m unemployed. Not that massive a deal. What is the creepiest is that my bosses who were NETTING upwards of 300K per week couldn’t comprehend me, grossing about 72 a day didn’t share their rabid hatred and concern . . . I kept pointing out that when they were making 300k a week I constantly suggested making $500 donations to youth clubs and local charities, high school sports etc not just because it was the right thing to do but because it would entrench the business in the community and give our neighbors a positive reason to see us survive and succeed.
A Woman
Click images for desktop size: “A Woman” by Unknown
They thought I was nuts. So when the fist came down they fought it but not in any kind of meaningful way. They got meetings with the Governor expecting her to veto the bill, not because they offered bribes or campaign contributions but because it was what they wanted.
Ah, the neaveau riche!
There final desperate ploy is filing a suit in fed court against the State claiming the law is discriminatory . . . They cling to this in there hope to keep extracting money from the poor.

Saw an immigration lawyer. It was worth the $250. We were going about it, not all wrong but with our energies misplaced. The lawyer should speed things up and save us money. He also clarified a lot of stuff that was not explicit in the instructions . . . not explicit means not even mentioned.
It seems we send in the printed forms along with proof we’re eligible to be married, two passport pictures, the marriage license and the check for $355. And that’s it.
Then you wait for that to be approved. When its approved – in like 90 days or so, they send you anHammer appointment for a personal interview – not together. It was a bit shocking to discover the interview would be standing at a window or a counter. The interview would last less than 15 minutes and maybe as little as 5 minutes . . . The other shocking thing was that my wife’s interview would be in Montreal, which is oh guessing 500 miles away from her in Ontario . . . And of course the $500 fee was shocking too. The additional fees. Rah.
Nobody said coming to America would be easy.
I forgot to ask where my interview would be.
After that interview, which you figure would be no problem, she’d get a two year conditional permanent residency. Only a government can make something permanent conditional.
Then that’s it. You can relax and be happy.

I’ve had to keep comments turned off. The spam is unreal. Some one even used my email address to spam!! When I complained this is the response i got from my hosting service:
Unfortunately, that is something spammers and hackers are doing more frequently. They do not need to hack into your account to do this. They do not even need to know your password or username to do this. All they need to do is send out spam email where they change the FROM email address to your email address. There is nothing we can do to stop them from doing this. You can either raise up your Spam protection to attempt to block their evil efforts, or you can stop using your email address that they are spoofing altogether. Those are the only two options that you have to combat the spammers.
YOW!!
This is one of the reasons I’ve turned my back on Obama. He recently had several websites shut down. These sites linked to unauthorized places to watch TV shows. I have views about that. But Drama Queen by Hoschie
Click images for desktop size: “Drama Queen” by Hoschie
now the point is that they spent thousands of man hours and millions of dollars protecting CBS, NBC, Fox and ABC etc, companies that have billions of their own dollars to pursue this sort of inanity and then these same FBI agents do nothing absolutely nothing to protect people from spammers. I guess because it’s been shown that the RIAA and MPPA (the real bad guys) retain the services of several of the larger spammers for nefarious reasons they refuse to discuss.
The spammers hitting this site have figured out how to bypass the fact that I have turned comments off. I still get dozens of spam comments weekly. They don’t get posted but they keep coming. What this does for the spammers I don’t know. I guess they can show their client that they posted their adverts on 2 million sites even if they never appear. Incredibly annoying, harassing and unfair. The terrorists win with an able assist from our increasingly frustrating and misguided government. Far more unfair then kids Ground Hog Day watching TV shows on-line.

My puppy is a slim trim 67 pounds!! This has barely increased her already arrogant, if dignified pose.

And suddenly time has passed. We did not get the house. Partially our fault in trusting people. Partly ineptness on the part of people you’re supposed to trust.
I got a nook off of craigslist for 25 bucks. The whole world is getting stoked over the kindle 3 so nooks are dwindling in value (with the announced sale of Barnes & Noble). I prefer the Kindle 2 to the nook but its okay. I can read on it and that’s all that matters to me. In the brief time I’ve had it I read Paretsky’s last VI Warshawski novel; “Hardball”. It was okay and had some good scenes. Unfortunately the plot mechanisms are still creaky and woefully repetitive.
I’m almost finished with Larry Niven’s sequel to “Inferno” which was his updating of Dante’s Inferno. The sequel, “Escape From Hell” makes you glad Dante didn’t feel compelled to write “Inferno II: The Devil Busts Loose”.

Football season is starting. USC will look different/ Maybe better.
Looks like my puppy and I will need this season.