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Bell Tower that is. Probably not in the style of Charles Whitman, or that German soldier, ass-hat from Inglorious Basterds, but one where I rain down a storm of insults and expletives because I’m just so damned pissed off of late.

Where do I start? With the GOP’s attempt to redefine rape? With the South Dakota’s attempt to legalize murder? I can also throw in the Federal govt’s attempt to pull funding away from Planned Parenthood – again. Or do I go with the publicizing of Lara Logan’s sexual assault as a pre-emptive measure because some other a-hole of some other news agency thought it made for a great story? Or how about this despicable misogynist, Nir Rosen, who thought Logan’s experience was a humorous affair?

We’re just past Valentine’s Day and I’m not feeling the love from the men. I feel like it is open season on women and women’s’ rights, and that we’re half a step away from legalizing honor killings in this country.

Seriously dudes?? WHAT THE FUCK? I woke up today feeling like it’s not 2011 but 1918.

So here’s my 2-cents and then I’m done.

  • I am sick of the idiot men who comment about the “tragedy” of Logan’s experience and how all Muslims are evil when in this country, the United damn States of America, 1 in 6 women can expect to be raped and only 6% percent of rapist will ever serve prison time.  However, Logan wasn’t raped but sexually assaulted, not that many people, men or women, learn the difference. But here’s the fact of the matter: Logan’s assault wasn’t about religion, it was about the same damn thing assaulting a woman is always about: a man feeling free to dominate a woman simply because he fucking could.
  • We are a country of majority rule.  The majority of Americans support a woman’s right to choose. And while we’re at it, Pro-Choice does not mean Pro-Abortion. And Planned Parenthood is exactly that: an organization dedicated to the education of women and men on family planning while providing access to contraceptives. No one in this country does more to prevent unwanted pregnancies than Planned Parenthood. No other entity in this country provides low-cost, basic medical services to women than Planned Parenthood. So anyone who wants to yank their funding while damning abortion is a complete moron.
  • Abortion being “murder” is a matter of opinion, whereas killing someone who performs what is a legal activity in this country is, in fact, murder.
  • Nir Rosen, while removing the offender tweet, quitting his job, and apologizing profusely, still doesn’t get what is most disturbing about what he did. His response: “i apologize and take it back. joking with friends got out of line when i didnt want to back down. forgot twitter is not exactly private“. Whether or not it was a private conversation, whether or not you were “just making a joke”, rape and sexual assault are not hilarious frivolities, they are extreme acts of violence. And what is most horrifying about you, Nir Rosen, was that you heard a woman was raped and your very first instinct was to make a joke. I hope this event kills your career.

I’m trying to remain positive despite all this news right now. I’m trying to be thankful that I live in this country when it sucks to be a woman in about 75%  of the other places I could be living. But that being said, it isn’t always a party here either.

Men, you are all officially on my fecal roster until such time that matters improve. In the meantime, get a clue.

I think I just caused a massive blow-up, if not a catastrophic one, between two friends who live together. A poorly timed Facebook message on my part may very well end a relationship between these two people. And while there’s plenty of other factors to at play here, it still feels like proverbial foot-in-mouth disease only in this case, it’s my fingers, a cell phone, social media, and the Internet I would have to swallow to make the metaphor work.

So, the context in which this little drama is unfolding is as follows: the couple moved into together after less than a year of dating; the girlfriend is 30 and ready for marriage, kids, what-not; the guyfriend is 21 and just beginning his new career which will likely take him over seas; girlfriend doesn’t want to move overseas; guyfriend doesn’t want marriage, kids, what-not right now and is being less than definitive in his answers to girlfriend.

These are the basics. Add to it a close cadre of friends who stay in touch and no secret remains quiet for long.

Guyfriend has been intimating that the relationship is on the rocks to a few within the cadre of friends. Girlfriend has been curiously quiet on the topic. Cadre of friends is in contact with Girlfriend via any variety of communication portals. Guyfriend has been semi-flirting on Skype with a tangential friend of the cadre. Cadre has been chastising Guyfriend over this fact, TO WHICH, Guyfriend says that Girlfriend has decided to move out.

Naturally the news ran like wild fire. In fact, it has been all morning. Me, being busy with school and all, has not been privy to this news. I receive a text to this effect, I am updated, and I send a text to Guyfriend. He doesn’t respond, so I send a Facebook message to Girlfriend.

Girlfriend responds via email in the manner of Gee-this-is-news-to-me-guess-I’m-breaking-up.

Crap! Crappity-crap-crap-crap and holy-hell-putting-out-fire-with-gasoline-crap!

So this begs the question: where is the culpability and with whom does it lie? Should I have confirmed this with Guyfriend directly? Did cadre possibly misinterpret what he said? Was this only his news to tell and disseminate at his leisure? I mean, our friends are not the kind to spread vicious gossip, so if they say Girlfriend is moving out, it is only because Guyfriend said so. And why the hell is Guyfriend saying this anyway?

We can only surmise Guyfriend was saying this to justify his less-than-honorable antics with this other girl he has been in contact with. That, or he is voicing his true feelings about his relationship and just hasn’t yet shared them with Girlfriend.

But what the eff?! He had to know we would reach out to Girlfriend!

And of course no one can get in touch with either of them. Not by phone, text, email, Facebook, Skype, Twitter, telegraph, semaphore, or smoke signals…

Technology, it’s supposed to make like easier. Only it’s easier to feel like you still live in high school and even more easy to eff up.

Effing hell…

I was just reading CNN online when I noticed an article about a court ordering two men to have their noses and ears cuts off. Obviously, a story like that makes you do a double take.

So I click on the story and as I am reading about these “poor” Pakistani men, I then get to the part of the article where the men were sentenced this very specific punishment because they committed this same act on woman.

Apparently, a young woman and her family refused an offer of marriage from a young man (maybe because they knew bad medicine when they saw it?) and in retaliation, the young man and a friend attacked the woman, strangled her, and performed this truly heinous act upon her.

It’s incredible how an opinion can turn a 180 on a situation, because while I at first exclaimed “WTF? We’re allies with these people?” as soon as I read the rest of the story, I more or less was saying “Well done! Bravo!”

Of course, if you at all follow the news, this is also coming from a country where last year three young women were beaten and buried alive for daring to choose their on husbands and three women who came to their defense were murdered as well. And four years prior to that, a woman was savagely gang raped when coming to the verbal defense of her brother falsely accused of a crime…And these are just the stories that somehow make the world media. Imagine how many are left untold?

I know, I know, turn the other cheek, and an eye for an eye makes us all blind, but here’s the thing: It pretty much sucks to be a woman on about 75% of this planet. So if a country wants to make an extreme example out of a pair misogynistic bastards who commit a horrific violent act against a woman, I am perfectly content to let them do so.

Merry effen Giftmasukah.

I was really pretty shocked to have read that Henry Louis Gates Jr., professor extraordinaire of long standing at the venerable institution Hahr-Vahrd, was arrested two days ago.

But I wasn’t shocked to have read the context and circumstances of his arrest. Sure, there’s the easy explanation of racism in America (you really will never convince me a white professor would have been treated the same way), but then there’s the even easier explanation that no one seems to be talking about and it is this: the arresting “officer” in the affair is yet another example of a douchebag cop with a Napoleon Complex.

Sure, I have no doubt the cop behaved in a racist manner, but that is an action coupled with a personality trait and that trait being that the he is yet another douchebag cop with a Napoleon Complex.

A professor here at school is a retired cop and relayed to me the different types of people who become police officers:

1. The Fitness Nut: the guy or gal who somehow relives their high school athletic glory days by being a cop. They are all about how they look in the uniform. Being a good or bad cop is strictly a matter of happenstance.

2. The Gun Nut: I think this speaks for itself. The Gun Nut, who is almost always male, is also closely related to the Penis Insecurity Nut.

3. The Righteous Nut: this person has an overwhelming sense of self-importance and truly thinks that the worse they behave towards the general public, the better cop they are.

4. The Drunk Cop: who is actually a pretty okay person who took the job as a way of redemption but at the same time, does not know how to handle the stress better.

Now according to Professor Cop, a police officer can actually be a combination of these varying traits but one is always more dominant than the other. Like the thing about Elvis and the Beatles: you can like both, but you always like one more than the other.

With regards to incident involving Professor Gates, my money is on Cop #3. Then again, I’m not at all familiar with the inner workings of cop-hood and the public perception I have garnered of them over the years is really just boils down to the simplicity of the douchebag cop with the Napoleon Complex scenario.

If you haven’t heard, a Philadelphia man was shot in a movie theater on Christmas Day for refusing to keep quiet during the film.

2628423331_d7680e9aa4While I don’t approve of the violence, I certainly understand the impulse that drove the shooter to his actions. Seriously, I get this. Total no brainer. People, in general, have become such complete barbarians in public, I’m more surprised that incidents like these doesn’t happen everyday.

For instance, I can not remember the last the time I saw a movie that wasn’t interupted with cell phones, people talking, or people getting up out of their seats every few minutes.

Libraries apparently have become the place to hang out with your teenage pals have a raucous good time.

Grocery shopping with your four sullen teenagers who skulk about, hogging lanes, not watching where they’re going, and have zero sense of their spatial relations, or, shopping with your screaming child in an SUV-styled grocery cart that crash into eneryone’s shins, apparently is now the accepted norm.

Noisy, crying, ill-behaved children in nice restaurants alongside the people who have no voice control or no sense of discretion sitting at the next table? Go ahead, complain, I dare you. Be forewarned that you will be viewed as the problem in that scenario,

Having to listen to other people’s loud and inconsequential phone conversations every damn place you go is now required.

Society’s utter lack of shame, or the absence of the implementation of shame as a social control, has removed any refuge from such boorish behavior. There is is simply no one place a person can go anymore and expect that rules of common courtesy be adhered to and I can easily see how the noise and constant harangue of these intrusions can cause someone to snap as it did in that movie theater.

How do you enforce the concept of common courtesy or appropriate behavioral norms? I can just see the ridiculous backlash heading this way in the form of movie theaters installing security to protect against violence as opposed to simply asking rude customers to shut the hell up. However, maybe starting with a few armed guards in movie theaters to ensure the domestic peace and quiet might not be such a bad idea.

I don’t claim to understand my brothers, but being that we share a great deal of genetic material, I at least expect to find some shred of commonality in thought.

That expectation was blown to hell, yet again, when we were discussing the situation of Caleb Campbell, West Point graduate, and recent 7th round draft pick of the Detroit Lions who has been called to active duty.

In a nutshell: Campbell graduated West Point and, he claims, was promised by the Army that if he was picked up, he could play and serve his time as a recruiter. Now, the Army has apparently changed their minds on this deal and Campbell has to serve two years before he’ll be allowed to try for the NFL again.

My brothers, and apparently over 60% of people in a FOX Sports poll, think the Army is being “unfair”.

Excuse me? Unfair? Campbell has received an very expensive education (it is valued to be in the realm of $500,000) on behalf of the tax payers of this country and he signed a contract stating that in return for this education, he would serve 5 years in the Army. The US Military Academies are a priceless education for more reasons than just monetary. For there to be even a hint of Campbell whining or shirking his duty is pretty freakin’ reprehensible particularly since many of his West Point brethren can expect to be heading to either Afghanistan or Iraq in the near future.

And even if the Army changed their mind, so what? It’s their prerogative to do so. I don’t seem to recall Roger-effen-Staubach complaining about honoring his commitment to his country after attending the Naval Academy. He did his time (in Vietnam, I might add) and then went on to one of the most successful NFL careers in history. So pardon me if I feel ZERO sympathy for Campbell getting a half-million dollar education and now bitching about not getting a million dollar football career.

…And with my brothers and all those other persons who thinks the Army is being “unfair” AND supports this business in Iraq, seriously people, WTF?

Oh, and by the way, Campbell apparently isn’t even going overseas. He staying right here in the US where he will be serving his time as a football coach at either West Point or its prep school. Considering he could be on his way to some pretty nasty war zones, he should be counting his blessings.

Geek that I am, I love physics. I particularly like quantum theory when it bleeds over into other worlds we might not associate it with. I was listening to NPR about the current situation in Burma, still horrendous, and how while the Military powers-that-be there are more than willing to accept our aid, they still will not accept expert help in disaster relief distribution. Maybe they saw the coverage of Hurricane Katrina, I don’t know, but that would more explain their exclusion of the US, but the fact is, they won’t let anyone in and supplies are being horded.

So this got me to thinking about Schrodinger’s Cat, a theory in quantum mechanics. In short, there’s a cat in a box with a vial of poison that will be released under specific circumstances. Assuming the circumstances are met, the cat will die. However, if you do not open the box to check on the cat, then the cat remains forever in this state of duality that the cat is both dead and alive until such time the box is open.

Schrodinger’s Cat opens up an interesting dialogue on ethics for me. See, once the cat is in the proverbial box, in my mind anyway, the cat is already dead and this is Burma in a nutshell: the Junta there believes (or want to anyway) that the people to be fine and outside help is unnecessary. They play at Schrodinger’s Cat in that they keep the people in Burma in a permanent state of limbo, being both alive and dead as the theory suggests. However, there’s a fly in the ointment, we’re talking quantum mechanics here, there’s always a fly in the ointment, and in this case namely it’s the Copenhagen Interpretation.

The Copenhagen Interpretation, in its own and separate nutshell, is that nothing exists until it is measured. Quite simply, the Junta is in some serious freakin’ denial. They don’t want to know how many people have died, they don’t want the international community in their country to assess how bad things really are there. They’d rather have the cat forever be both alive and dead to suit their dictatorial purposes. The people aren’t dead, they aren’t in need, and their country is fine so long as no one outside their own perverse and diabolic circle looks at it.

It is now estimated that probably over 80,000 people have died due to this disaster and over 2 million more are at risk. This is the same country who last year during the Saffron Revolution called out for international intervention and the world answered back with a big fat deaf ear.

If ever there was a time for a little war and revolution, you’d think this would be it.

Personally, I hope the cat is alive, although I’m not betting on it.

An old friend of mine called this afternoon to thank me, tearfully, for the tool kit I gave her as a wedding present 12 years ago.

I was a little taken aback at first, because one, it took me a minute to remember I had given to her, and two, because I remember the look on her face when she unwrapped the gift and saw I had her given her a deluxe-tool box that weighed about 50 pounds and comprised of all tools made for female hands. She was confused, she was embarassed, and clearly, not happy with the gift.

Okay, back story: She was 23 years old and instead of drifting into a career upon graduation from college, she drifted in marriage. She was doing it because she couldn’t figure out anything better to do. He was doing it because she fit in nicely with this idea he had about the “right wife aiding him greatly” in his career. Yes, that is a direct quote.

As any of my friends can attest, if I think you’re making a bonehead move that will ruin your life, I am pretty keen to tell you so. This is why I have few friends. However, my friend really, really, really, wanted me to be happy for her and I wasn’t nor could I be. She had her life before her and he was a frat-boy-schmuck on an endless summer beer bong. I told her I hoped I was wrong, but I didn’t think I was.

Anyhoo-the year prior to the nuptials, I did everything possible to talk her out of marriage. And yet, that didn’t manage to get me kicked of the wedding party unfortunately, but she got me back with the really ugly bridesmaid dress.

I threw her a bridal shower for just friends where she received self-help books, airplane tickets for one, a metal file, a length of lead pipe, a collapsible escape ladder, and a Rolodex that contained no less than 50 cards for divorce attorneys (as you can see, I wasn’t the only one who thought this was a really bad idea).

Her bachelorette party (which I didn’t organize) ended up being an intervention where even her Maid of Honor was offering to drive her anywhere she wanted if she would just not go through with the wedding.

Sadly, the wedding was had and the marriage commenced. It lasted 6 years and 8 1/2 months of her second pregnancy.

So my friend called me today while she was in the middle of a hellacious project of trying to put together a playset for her sons by herself. The massive tool box is still with her, a little worse for wear, and not only did the handle break today, but it threw a wheel which rolled down the driveway and into a storm drain.

She called to tell me that that tool kit had seen her through putting together furniture in her first home after the wedding when her husband was out all night with his beer buddies, through putting together the crib for her first son when her husband was always working late, through fixing the garbage disposal when her husband was off cheating on her, and countless other projects throughout the divorce and the subsequent years as a single mother. And now that the tool box was falling apart and needed to be replaced, she was much more upset at having to replace the toolbox than she ever was over leaving her husband. As she put it, that tool kit had seen her through a bad marriage, a horrible divorce, and some lonely years of trying to raise her sons by herself.

Damn. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t have the heart too tell her that I only gave it as a joke although I’m glad it did more for her than its intended purpose, which was to serve as a a symbol of my undying snarkiness. It certainly has done more for her over the years than I have.

Damn.

Given that dog bites are one of the top injuries children suffer, I am often amazed that parents don’t teach their kids better manners when interacting with domestic pets.

Case in point: three evil cretins who reside in my neighborhood seem to think it’s amusing to run up behind me while walking the dog, shout something out thus scaring my dog, and run away while she goes nuclear-ape-shit into attack mode. This used to happen every once in a while, but it has happened twice in the last week.

Oh, yeah, it’s funny, but I’ll bet they think it’s absolutely hilarious the day I let go of her leash and let my fully grown mastiff go medieval on their asses. But, of course, that will make me the bad dog owner.

That’s right, I put my pet through countless hours of behavioral training, make sure she’s up on her shots, have her licensed through the proper authorities, keep her on a leash when out in public, and clean up after her business, but those mental defects can torment my dog to the point where she reacts as she rightly well should and she’s a bad dog and I’m the bad dog owner.

So today, walking Puppy Dog, I see the three little jackasses out of the corner of my eye. I keep notice as they stalk us through the neighborhood. They disappear behind some houses and appear to have gone. Just as I turn down the next street, we are ambushed with a kamikaze attack of yelling but their escape isn’t quite so easy. The rain and the mud has slowed them down just long enough for me to throw a fully-loaded bag of gooey dog-doo right upside the slowest little bastard’s head.

SCORE!!!

Okay, fine, I’m a bad dog owner and juvenile to boot. But at least I had a second bag with which to clean up with.

I’m giving serious thoughts to getting a Taser.

As I am sure many a blogger has asked him or herself: What is the proper etiquette when dealing with stalkers?

I’m noticing a myriad of potential ethical issues that might arise when planning a good defense against a whack-job-nut-bag-full-of-bonkers. Some examples:

1. Is it right and proper to to publish the identity of a STALKER in your blog when they refer to themselves as “Anon” or “Anonymous” yet have their full name in their email address? How about when they use their own likeness as an Avatar?

2. If that STALKER has a particular bent, say they are overtly religious, is it right to retaliate by submitting their email address to as many atheist or pro-choice organizations as you can find?

3. If your STALKER is just a big ball of crazy, is it inappropriate to submit their information to mental health organizations that may help them “deal” with their issues?

4. How horrible would it be, really, to pay the teenage neighbor kid (who is quite the hacker) to create an evil-evil worm to email to your STALKER?

…or should you take the high ground and just invite your STALKER into a chat room where you can sit down virtually over a cup of Second Life coffee where they can discuss their “secret pain” ?

Of course, I’m joking…I know it’s best to just ignore and not engage your STALKER. I know that it is just better to block your STALKER from your blog and to not email them directly because you really don’t know what you’re dealing with…

But seriously, where’s the fun in that?