Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Saint Andrew's Day

Most everybody the world over recognizes Saint Patrick’s Day every March 17th. On that day, everyone claims to be Irish, whether true or not. I’ve always found it amusing that two of the biggest things associated with that most Irish of days are Scottish kilts and Scottish bagpipe bands, since traditionally the Irish were never big on the wearing of the kilt, and the Irish Uilleann bagpipe is a lot different from the Scottish Highland bagpipe most are familiar with.

Above: A delightful young lass plays the Irish Uileann pipes.
Below: The Great Highland Bagpipe, being played by pipers of South Carolina's own Charleston Police Pipes & Drums.

What most don’t know, however, is that the Scots do, indeed, have their own day and their own patron. Today is Saint Andrew’s Day, celebrated both in Scotland and by those of Scots heritage worldwide.

Like me! (Despite that unwieldy Polish surname I was saddled with at birth)

Although most commonly associated with Scotland, Saint Andrew is also the patron saint of Greece, Romania, Russia and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.
In Germany, the feast day is celebrated as Andreasnacht ("St. Andrew's Night"), in Austria with the custom of Andreasgebet ("St. Andrew's Prayer"), and in Poland as Andrzejki ("Andrews").

Andrew is also the patron saint of Army Rangers, mariners, fishermen, fishmongers, rope-makers, singers and performers.

So, to all my fellow Scots, I raise a wee dram of single malt and say “Slainte mhath!”

Sunday, November 29, 2009

More of the crap I see around me....

You tend to see a lot of interesting things when you drive around greater Charleston. I have about a hundred mile commute each day for work, and often return to Charleston on the weekends for social engagements. Here are a few of my random sightings in traffic over the past few months. For another glimpse, go see last year's post:

I kid you not. This picture is NOT Photoshopped. This is a real cargo ship.

July 4th, 2009. When you REALLY need ice and one side is locked, just CRAWL INSIDE to get it.

There's just no explaining this piece of Ghetto Fabulosity. Spotted on Montague Avenue.

I'm pretty sure that Ronald McDonald would be proud to roll through Chucktown in this...

Spotted on a two-tone Lexus by the Coliseum:"We in war. We need the good man" WTF?

I don't quite understand the Power Rangers mask on the least it matches the car.

File this one under: Lee Press-On Spoiler Fail

The Pepto-Bismol Pink Honda Civic I spotted by the airport.

I found it somewhat strange that a bra should be left hanging by a man's suede sport coat at Wal-Mart, as they were both the same color.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Random Obama sightings

Funny how most of my Obama sightings come at Wal Mart...makes you wonder if there's a conspiracy afoot?

Saw these little gems a few months ago, when I still had hair and America still had an economy. Wal Mart was selling these Obama trading cards. WTF? And according to J-Summ, they had no gum in them.

Of course, since Obama is a rock star, indoctrination of the kids via propaganda posters is a must. Found these at WalMart, too.

Sadly, spotted in a Wal Mart parking lot. This is like a Jews for Hitler sticker.

Spotted in the parking lot across the street from my work.

Yeah, I know it was ostensibly for breast cancer awareness, because nothing says "Beat Cancer" quite like a sugary carbonated beverage, but the new Pepsi logo is so similar to the Obamunists' insignia that it just seems a bit hinky to me...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Madam Glambert: 14:59 and counting...

Oh, dear.

It seems that I missed some sort of spectacle at the Dick Clark Memorial Contrived RIAA SuckUp Showcase, um, I mean, The American Music Awards, this past Sunday night. From what everyone seems to be clogging the blogosphere with, last year’s American Idol runner-up Adam Lambert shamelessly tried like hell to out-Madonna Madonna, out-Christina Christina, and out-Britney Britney with a stage show full of faux-S&M themes, crotch-grabbery, man-kissery, crotch-facery, finger-bangery, dancers galore, and an attention whore at center stage.

Everyone seems up in arms over this supposedly outrageous behavior, their tender sensibilities besmirched by a flamboyant gay man doing his level best to shock the world on live TV as he sang his debut single. Personally, I could give a shit less.

I’m not offended by a gay kiss on TV. I’m not titillated by scantily-clad stick-women gyrating to the beat. I’ve seen better S&M references on Family Guy.

What actually offended me was that Lambert felt the need to resort to such douchebaggery in the first place.

First of all, Madam Glambert, you’ve been famous now for all of about six minutes. I realize that it all very well could be over in another 9 minutes, but shouldn’t you at least wait till you have an established hit and a bona-fide career before you start trying to shock the world into accepting you no matter how outrageous you become?

Madonna at least didn’t start being controversial 'til her second album. She’d released 5 singles, (3 made the Top 20, two made the Top 10, and one went to #4) before “Like a Virgin”. I haven’t even heard you on the radio yet. Someone said they heard you screeching during the end credits to the film “2012”, but as I have yet to see the movie I can’t say for sure. I know that this debut single of yours wasn’t all that; just more of your incessant caterwauling with your tongue hanging out on the high notes. Sounded like two cats in heat locked in a dumpster, with a backbeat.

Being edgy is cool. Raising awareness & acceptance of every lifestyle is cool. But being outrageous in an attempt to offend people into paying attention just makes you a tool. Think Marylin Manson with better guy-liner.

I think though what really offended me most of all was the way the media has treated this.

Good Morning America dropped Lambert off it’s telecast the next day like he was the Anti-Christ in revenge for his unscripted antics on their ABC network. Dick Clark was probably just millimeters away from another strroke from apoplexy. CBS snatched him right up, not because he’s talented, but because of the ratings he’d bring in from the scandal. It could have been Khalid Sheik Mohammed singing “Pop Goes The Weasel” for all they cared, so long as he'd kissed a guy the night before. CBS however screwed the pooch by blurring Lambert’s dude-on-dude kiss, and yet they never blurred the Madonna/Britney kiss. America is okay with two girls kissing, but two guys kissing shall rip mankind asunder, and the Earth’s crust shall erupt in fire & brimstone with Satan himself leading the charge from the bowels of Hell? Fucking please. Grow up. Ya'll act like being gay is a disease and you can catch the Gay Cooties. Morons.

And then there’s the clowns at Dick Clark Productions, who put on the AMA awards show. They trolled the internet after the show looking for anyone daring to post up the Lambert vid, and got You Tube to not only delete the vids but filed copyright infringement claims on people regardless of whether they had the video bootlegged or not. If it had Lambert in the title, they nailed them. Of what do I speak? I found this guy’s rant against Dick Clark Productions on YouTube; it was quite eye-opening, if you can get past the fact he’s wearing an Obi-Wan Kenobi mask and disguising his voice.

Face it, ABC & DCP: Once you broadcast it, it’s gonna end up on YouTube. Welcome to the Information Age. So long as no one’s re-broadcasting it to make a fast buck, get over it and accept that it’ll end up online. Just to spite the censors at Dick Clark Productions, I think I’ll include a couple stills from Lambert’s spectacle. Sue Me. And then sue Fox, cuz that's where I got the pics.

But really, Lambert. You may have torpedoed your career before it even started. I know that folks coming in second on Idol usually do better than the winners themselves, but there’ve been dammed few bona-fide real stars to come off that show. A few more are working on having success; the rest are one-hit wonders or simply forgotten. It’s a fey, fickle world, Pop Music. Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Chris Daughtry; big stars. Taylor Hicks was dropped from his label within a year.

Clock’s ticking, sweet pea. Make sure your impact is a positive one.

Welcome to Arby's. Can I take your order?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Obama's 10 Commandments (From Professor of Life)

I found this over at Professor of Life's blog. ( Stop by and show him some love. This is positively brilliant.

I. Thou shalt have no God in America, except for me. For we are no longer a Christian nation and, after all, I am the chosen One. (And like God, I do not have a birth certificate.)

II. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, unless it is my face carved on Mt. Rushmore.

III. Thou shalt not utter my middle name in vain (or in public). Only I can say Barack Hussein Obama.

IV. Remember tax day, April 15th, to keep it holy.

V. Honor thy father and thy mother until they are too old and sick to care for. They will cost our public-funded health-care system too much money.

VI. Thou shalt not kill, unless you have an unwanted, unborn baby. For it would be an abomination to punish your daughter with a baby.

VII. Thou shalt not commit adultery if you are conservative or a Republican. Liberals and Democrats are hereby forgiven for all of their infidelity and immorality, but the careers of conservatives will be forever destroyed.

VIII. Thou shalt not steal, until you've been elected to public office. Only then is it acceptable to take money from hard-working, successful citizens and give it to those who do not work, illegal immigrants, or those who do not have the motivation to better their own lives.

IX. Thou shalt not discriminate against thy neighbor unless they are conservative, Caucasian, or Christian.

X. Thou shalt not covet because it is simply unnecessary. I will place such a heavy tax burden on those that have achieved the American Dream that, by the end of my term as President, nobody will have any wealth or material goods left for you to covet.

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Republican Voice in Maine

My high school classmate Dean Scontras had this editorial published today in the Portland Press Herald up in Maine. Dean's a former GOP candidate for Congress in Maine's First District, and a real Republican instead of the vanilla-flavored Maine RINO we've seen as of late. He's also recently formed up an exploratory committee to see about possibly running again. I urge you guys to give his article a read, and to lend Dean your support.

It's worth it to see the article at the PPH website so you can also see the comments left behind...

Americans want to cut back government spending to sustainable levels

They think Republicans and Democrats have both failed to keep budgets within bounds.

DEAN SCONTRAS November 23, 2009

ELIOT, Maine — Judy Shelton, author and economist, recently remarked in an op-ed piece: "If money is a moral contract between government and its citizens, we are being violated."

In addition, a recent New York Times poll suggested that Americans overwhelmingly want to bring down the debt and spend less.

Americans are making the connection between spending, debt, borrowing (from foreign entities) and the effect on currency.

Subsequently, like the limited omniscient protagonist in a good murder mystery, Americans and voters are having the "Aha!" moment where they finally discover "whodunit" – our elected officials.

More so, they are coming for some accountability. Our elected officials and incumbents are about to pay the price of the silent fiscal awakening of so many in this state and across this country.

The subprime mortgage mess resulted from the false promise of risk-free lending in perpetuity, coupled with the profits that could be made by such carefree lending practices.

Appropriately, after learning what happened between the government and some lending institutions, we were properly outraged.

Therefore, it is with even a greater sense of irony that the architects of the government's finances – our elected officials – are claiming that they can continue to borrow and mortgage our future in perpetuity without similar consequences than those incurred by the subprime fallout.

Unless Washington dramatically changes its spending habits, it is hard to foresee a soft landing.

Falling sort of feels like flying until you hit the ground. The ground in this case will be come when our lenders call their loans and seek other investment alternatives.

If the United States were any other county, given our unfunded liabilities and growing deficits, normal lending institutions would never extend credit to such an "upside down" entity.

In fact, we are the only country that can print money and expect others to simultaneously purchase our "paper."

China is one of the largest. It currently holds $2 trillion in our assets.

Of all the "printed" dollars in circulation, 75 percent are outside of the United States.

Recent indications by both China and India imply that the spend/print/borrow trend may be coming to a conclusion.

China and India are showing serious signals of reluctance.

If China merely slows the pace at which it purchases our debt, it will have a significant ripple effect through our entire economic system, right on down to our localities and muncipalities.

When you consider that the cornerstone of our financial system is the "risk free rate" (the return on Treasury bills and bonds with the full faith and credit of the United States to guarantee repayment) what happens when the risk associated with our debt goes up?

What happens when your lenders lose confidence in you?

Go ask Bear Stearns.

It doesn't take a mathematician to conclude that our spending rate is simply unsustainable and our lenders are getting nervous.

The voting of incumbents has resulted in the continuation of this vicious circle of borrowing and spending.

According to the Pete Peterson Foundation, "The government is in a roughly $56.4 trillion financial hole that is growing by $2 trillion to $3 trillion every year; nothing is done to address it."

The riddle that remains confusing is: Why do we simultaneously demonstrate a disdain for deficits though we continually demonstrate an affection for politicians who perpetuate them? If they cannot break their spending addiction, we must do it for them and vote them all out next November.

Make no mistake about it, Republicans and Democrats are equally at fault.

When you exclude the Social Security trust fund, we have only balanced the budget once in 50 years!

We cannot allow the inertia of comfortable incumbency to be a substitute for sound economic policy.

Copyright 2009 by The Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. All rights reserved.

Burka Barbie Update


Wow....I was ahead of my time it seems....

Back in August of 2008, I made a post here (well, yet another post)about the Muslim takeover in England. In said post, I mentioned that perhaps the Brits would prefer a Burka Barbie.

And now that post has been getting dozens & dozens of hits the past few days as the result of folks looking for this Burka Barbie that has appeared for a charity auction in connection with Sotheby's for Save The Children. A burka-clad Barbie in The United Islamic Kingdom? Imagine that...

May as well have Kaffiyeh Ken hook up a car bomb to the Barbie Dream Porsche, or maybe just fix a Mk-19 grenade launcher to the Barbie Jeep...

So for all of you who were going to my other post looking for Burka Barbie, here she is, in various iterations...

Why not? The little terrorist buggers are bred for it from birth to die for Allah...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

168 hours in a week, and all I got was 2...

Special thanks to the guys at tcmediatech for their extensive archives

Back when I was just getting out of high school, long about the time when the Earth was cooling, Music Television (MTV) played these things called music videos. A curious thing, these videos, little movies used as a promotional tool to help sell records (I mean, CD’s). Some videos were iconic and full of really cool and groundbreaking effects, and some were just bloody awful. By the mid-90’s however, MTV began to stand for Miscellaneous Television as music and videos were supplanted and replaced by absolute crap. Faux reality bullshit, mockumentaries, contrived rehabs, and turning $400 hoopties into $30,000 super-hoopties; that’s what I was given instead of music.

MTV beget its doppelganger, MTV2, to play videos and try to maintain that edginess the original started with but failed to maintain once they became corporate whores. There was also Video Hits One (VH1), which in the 80’s played what I called “grown up vids”, or clips from adult contemporary light rock acts like Elton John, Billy Joel, and Richard Marx. Nowadays, VH1 plays a couple hours a morning of videos, and then they, too, go for the formulaic corporate crap of faux reality and other drivel.

Of course, the general rotation on MTV was Top 40 pabulum until the mid-90's when rap finally took over completely. MTV made little forays into other genres during the video era, mostly with rap and with the Saturday night heavy-metal Headbanger’s Ball, but for alternative music, the stuff I listened to, for a long time you were just shit outta luck.

In 1986, MTV acquiesced and deigned to spawn a show called 120 Minutes, which was created to play two hours of alternative-music videos each week, Of the 168 hours in a week, me and those like me were given only two of them, in a shitty time slot so late on Sunday night it may as well be Monday morning. Needless to say I seldom say it until after I graduated in 1987 and didn’t have to get up so early on Mondays.

On Sunday, March 10, 1986, 120 Minutes premiered at 1 a.m. on MTV, hosted by the ancient and venerable J.J. Jackson, one of MTV’s original VJ’s. The late Sunday night time slot would be its home for the next 17 years, with alternative music relegated to a mere two hours in the middle of a Sunday night.

Two of the show's early hosts: The late JJ Jackson (far left) and Alan Hunter (far right)Great red leather suit JJ. Seriously, dude, WTF?

In the early years of the show MTV tried out a number of hosts, including Alan Hunter, Kevin Seal, and Downtown Julie Brown. Alan Hunter was also an original MTV VJ. At least it wasn’t Adam Curry and his huge mane of 80’s Bon Jovi hair. Downtown Julie Brown? C’mon, guys…that pre-Spice Girls Cockney accent and “wubba wubba wubba” routine got old after the first 5 minutes. Kevin Seal got his start as some sort of wannabe comedian on that lame-assed MTV ”game show” Remote Control, a sort of poor man’s Bill Murray at best and poor man’s David Leisure at worst, introducing songs like he was emceeing a roast on Comedy Central. His foil on the show, although he camped it up a bit, was the show’s producer, Dave Kendall, who would come onto a TV monitor in glowing special effects and regale us with new releases and alternative music news. In 1989, Kendall became the show's first solid host.

Kevin Seal never quite seemed serious about his job as host or seemed to even care about the music. It was excruciating to watch him.

After Kendall left 120 Minutes in 1992, he was followed by many other hosts. In 1995, Matt Pinfield officially began hosting the show. Over the next four years, he became known as a walking music encyclopedia and remembered as the most recognizable host. By that time, I’d given up on MTV as a whole. Once the videos went away in favor of bullshittery like Real World, and other crap that continues to this day like B-list Celebrity rehabs for sex & drugs, and contrived celebreality faux dating shows where aging celebs dated skanks and then the skanks got their own shows that spawned more shows of the skanks' suitors.

MTV started to pre-empt the show in favor of crap like Road Rules and Lovelines in 2000, and it was downhill from there. It was moved from MTV to MTV2 in 2001 and moved to even later at night when zombies lurk about. The 120 Minutes series finale aired the night of Sunday, May 4th, 2003, at 1 a.m., hosted by Jim Shearer. He was joined by former hosts Dave Kendall and Matt Pinfield to send off the show. But, like zombies, the show wouldn’t die.

You can now find 120 Minutes Classic on (where else?) VH1 Classic. Sadly, they still give alternative music no respect whatsoever, keeping the show exiled to 4AM Sunday/Monday mornings. Thankfully I can just set my DVR to record it and I can watch it at my leisure later on. They include videos now from not just the 80’s heyday of alternative but the 90’s grunge and Second Wave. They also tend to include a new video from an established artist in addition to a classic cut, a sort of “Classic/Current” thing, for those artists who are still making viable music today.

There’s no host these days, and they play a steady stream of commercials over & over for the same products (Tempurpedic mattresses, ProActiv zit cream, the AbCircle fitness device, and that annoying commercial for, but the music is still the stuff I remember. Whoever is programming the rotation is keeping it relatively simple. There are certain artists, that I’ll call the A-List, that get played pretty much every week. The A-List would include Depeche Mode, U2, REM, The Smiths/Morrissey, New Order, and The Cure, and usually including Erasure and Pet Shop Boys, but they play less of a variety of clips from PSB & Erasure than the others. I mean, Erasure’s been around for 23+ years, and all VH1 can manage is “Chains of Love” and “A Little Respect”, and seldom do they play anything from PSB but “West End Girls”.

The show gets filled in by a rotating cast of B-List acts that you might see every other week, and there’s only a couple vids that get played by the acts despite many of them having huge back catalogs. These are acts like Psychedelic Furs, Echo & The Bunnymen, Siouxsie & The Banshees, A Flock of Seagulls, and OMD. And you can almost guarantee seeing “Cars” by Gary Numan, and the most whored-out song of the alternative era, “I Melt With You” by Modern English. Interestingly, they tend to only play the original 1982 version of the song and not the 1990 re-recording. Throw in the grunge rotation of Alice In Chains, Nirvana, and Stone Temple Pilots, top it off with a mélange of other alternative acts, and you’ve got the show in a nutshell.

No wonder people turned to YouTube. They could watch what they wanted, when they wanted, without the bullshit.

Here’s a sample of the last few shows I watched:
Erasure- Chains of Love, Modern English- I Melt With You, U2- I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, U2- Get On Your Boots, Gary Numan- Cars, Devo- Beautiful World, OMD- If You Leave, The Cure- The Walk, Hole- Miss World, The Lemonheads – Into Your Arms, Presidents of the USA- Peaches, REM- It’s The End Of The World As We Know It, Blue- Boys & Girls, Bush- Machinehead, The Smiths- There Is A Light That Never Goes Out, Radiohead- Creep, Depeche Mode- I Feel You, Oasis- Wonderwall, Smashing Pumpkins- Bullet With Butterfly Wings, Nirvana- The Man Who Sold The World, Red Hot Chili Peppers – Suck My Kiss, Bad Religion –Infected

U2- Where The Streets Have No Name, Sinead O’Connor- Mandinka, REM- Losing My Religion, Pet Shop Boys- West End Girls, Talk Talk- Talk Talk, World Party- Ship of Fools, A Flock of Seagulls- I Ran, Lightning Seeds- Pure, U2- Desire, U2- Magnificent, Depeche Mode- Strangelove, Human League- Don’t You Want Me Baby, Tori Amos- Silent All These Years, New Order – Bizarre Love Triangle, REM – It’s The End Of The World As We Know It, REM- Supernatural Superserious, Alphaville – Big In Japan, Pet Shop Boys- Suburbia, The Replacements – I’ll Be You, Sinead O’Connor- Mandinka, Faith No More- Midlife Crisis
Note: Someone must have messed up in the programming room to play the same song twice in the show, and to play the same band three times.

They Might Be Giants – Don’t Let’s Start, Psychedelic Furs- Love My Way, Green Day- Basket Case, The Alarm- Spirit of ’76, Berlin- The Metro, REM- Radio Song, Alphaville- Big In Japan, Dramarama- Anything, Stone Temple Pilots- Wicked Garden, Craftwork – The Model, Social Distortion- Cold Feeling, The Replacements- Bastards of Young, Bob Mould- See a Little Light, Sublime- Date Rape, Bow Wow Wow- I Want Candy, Pearl Jam – Evenflow, Erasure- Chains of Love, Ministry- Just One Fix, Depeche Mode –But Not Tonight, Cracker- Teen Angst, Tori Amos- Cornflake Girl, XTC- Dear God

Matt Pinfield, longtime 120 Minutes host and fount of musical knowledge. This is his happy face...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Already feeling the Christmas Overload...

................THE HUNT FOR BLACK NOVEMBER........................

You can, indeed, over-do a good thing.

Look, I like Christmas just as much as the next fellow, but stop cramming it down our throats. Sure, it’s hard to sometimes get in the holiday spirit of the season when it’s still 75 degrees out and instead of the snowfall of a White Christmas you have the dead brown grass of a Carolina Pseudo-Winter. But really, is it just me or did the holiday season start a hell of a lot earlier this year?

Never mind Black Friday; it’s Black November. All I’ve heard about for the past couple weeks is “Black Friday this” and “Black Friday that”. There are dozens of websites devoted to “leaked” early editions of major retailers’ Black Friday ads. Wal-Mart has changed their policy regarding stores being open to avoid trampling rushes. Used to be, in times long ago, the Christmas shopping season started the day after Thanksgiving. Now, it starts the day after Halloween.

Seriously, stores started putting out the Yuletide décor as they were taking down the Halloween gear, if not before so as they did in my local Mart of Wal. The smartest people out there bought Halloween costumes as Christmas gifts on November 1st at a 75% discount. I guess the economy is so utterly FUBAR that stores are desperate for business and thus started the holidays early in hopes of prying more money from our fingers.

And of course, there’s the music.

I remember getting into the Yule spirit with holiday music in the two weeks leading up to Christmas. They’d play a holiday-themed song about every 30-60 minutes, and on the 25th itself they’d play a lot more, sometimes nothing but Christmas songs from about 6AM to noon. Then it got to be where the music started right after Thanksgiving, and that morphed into at least one station in every town playing the holiday cheer non-stop, from Thanksgiving on. Now, we have a station here (and likely in your town too) that started with the non-stop, 24/7, repetitive Christmas music two weeks before Thanksgiving. Thanks, Corporate Radio and Corporate America. Christmas is just another commercial venture and source of revenue to you.

There’s but only so many Christmas songs out there. You have your traditional songs from the hymnals, like “Joy to the World”, “Oh Come All Ye Faithful/Adeste Fidelis”, and “Silent Night”, and you have the non-religious carols we all grew up on, like “Silver Bells” and “The Christmas Song” with its chestnuts roasting on an open fire.

You have the more modern holiday songs, like “Baby its Cold Outside”, “All I Want for Christmas Is You”, and “Merry Christmas, Baby Please Come Home”, and the comedic songs like “Santa Baby”, “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer”, and Adam Sandler’s various iterations of his Hanukkah Song.

And since every artist on every record label feels the need to record a Christmas album when they run out of fresh ideas in order to fulfill their contract obligations of releasing so many albums, you’ll hear the same song over & over & over done by a litany of artists. Should you choose to listen to Holiday Music, you’ve got no choice but to suffer through myriad versions of the same songs over & over. We all have our favorites. Take “Silent Night”, for example…some people prefer Stevie Nicks while I prefer to hear Enya doing it in Gaelic. I like to hear Jars of Clay doing “Little Drummer Boy”, but I also like the Bing Crosby & David Bowie version, too.

Eventually I think I’ll rustle up a list of my favorite Christmas songs for my readers.

But really, am I wrong in my observations that the Holiday Season started on November 1st? The kids were still in sugar comas from trick-or-treating and the young adults were still waking up either on the floor where they drunkenly passed out the night before or in a bed next to some stranger in a Slutty Princess or Pimp Vampire suit, that they drunkenly went home with after the party and are now horrified by the ramifications, and America’s retailers were wheeling out the tinsel for the dog to choke on and the colored cheap glass balls for the cat to bat around & break.

Middle-aged America was picking up the toilet paper from their trees and older America was pondering life under ObamaCare’s Death Panels without Social Security while shoveling the remains of a burned bag of dogshit into the garden, and America’s retailers were putting the finishing touches on commercials to let you know that your family will crumble unless you get them new $500.00 cell phones or that if you buy overpriced rags made in a Third World Country at some trendy mall store, you too can be a popular, size 0, desirable person at the Christmas Party…or you could just wear the Slutty Elf and Pimp Santa suits?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Triple Crown of Venereal Disease: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

For years, the citizens of Washington, DC held the bragging rights as the Homicide Capital of the United States, in addition to being the actual capital. Then they had to share that status with New Orleans. Now I think they’re having to contend with local neighbor Baltimore. For awhile, they had the bragging rights to having a crackhead Mayor in and out of jail, but then along came Kwame Kilpatrick, Larry Langford, and others to spoil that claim to fame.

But D.C. needs a statistical superiority all its own, something her citizens can be proud of. I mean, everyone deserves to be #1 at something, don’t they?
Well, fret no longer, residents of the District. You’re now the Venereal Disease Capital of America!

You win, place, and show. You win gold, silver, and bronze. Call it the Triple Crown of Social Disease.

Washington, D.C., has the dubious distinction of beating all 50 states to post the highest rates in the nation for Chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis, according to a new report released by the CDC in Atlanta. The CDC report, released Monday, is based on 2007 surveillance statistics, and was updated in 2008.

The District has a Chlamydia rate of 1,177 cases per 100,000 people, damn near three times the rate of its neighbors, Virginia (405 per 100,000) and Maryland (439 per 100,000).

Mississippi was a distant second, at 728 cases per 100,000 people. Cheer up, Magnolia State; while in 2007 Mississippi students scored the lowest of any state on the National Assessments of Educational Progress in both math and science, at least you’re a distant second in cases of The Creeping Clam.

By comparison, California’s Chlamydia rate was 407 cases per 100,000; New York came in at 458; New Mexico at 470; Utah at 377 and Maine’s rate was a mere 198 per 100,000.

For gonorrhea, D.C.’s rate was 451.5 cases per 100,000--almost twice that of second-ranking Mississippi (256.8); more than three times the rate of its neighbors Virginia (134) and Maryland (118); more than 13 times the rate of Oregon (32.5) and more than 25 times the rate of Utah (18). Again, denizens of our 20th state, take heart in being a distant second with The Clap, too.

Other state rates for gonorrhea include: 160.9 for Illinois; 134 for Texas and 88.7 for New York.

D.C.’s nation-leading syphilis rate of 24.8 cases (including both primary and secondary syphilis) per 100,000 dwarf second-place Louisiana's 16.5 per 100,000 rate and third-place Alabama’s rate of 9.7 per 100,000. It’s nearly four times the rate of Maryland (6.7).

By comparison, the syphilis rate was 6.3 per 100,000 for New York; 6.0 for California; 4.3 for Illinois; 3.4 for Virginia and 0.05 for Iowa.

Seemingly missing from the report is that trusty old standby STD, herpes. For all we know, Washington could be the leader in herpes infections too, although my own research seems to point fingers at New York City and Atlanta.

I guess what goes around comes around. After so many years of screwing the nation, Washington finally got burned…