Monday, July 30, 2007

The Sound of a Mind Idling

This is important to nobody but me: I did a self-imposed media blackout the other week (per week four of The Artist's Way...yeah, I bit the hook on that, don't laugh) to see how I'd fill my time if I got rid of my usual distractions. I cooked up a few fun stories, some housework...and, um...this:

Monday, July 16, 2007

Why William Kristol Will Be Committed Within 18 Months

The twenty-words-or-less summary of Mr. Kristol's opinion piece: "It really hasn't been such a bad presidency...all you have to do is use your imagination." That's what it's come to, eh? Shooting rainbows up the asses of the dwindling lot of True Believers? Was this administration ever about anything else? Because the ghosts of several thousand dead soldiers and civilians would like to have a heart-to-heart with you on a few points you bring up.

Here's a bit of wind to blow up your skirt, for instance:
Even at Bush's current low point in popularity, the leading GOP presidential candidates are competitive in the polls with Democratic Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama. Furthermore, one great advantage of the current partisan squabbling in Washington is that while it hurts Bush, it also damages the popularity of the Democratic Congress-- where both Clinton and Obama serve. A little mutual assured destruction between the Bush administration and Congress could leave the Republican nominee, who will most likely have no affiliation with either, in decent shape.

So there is hope for another GOP prez in '08, and the only thing needed is the abject failure of both houses of Congress. Such a simple request. Of course, Mr. Kristol should've learned from his experience with Dubya that results don't matter as long as you've got character, but I don't want to give him ideas.

I'm just playing this for comedy, of course. You might want a more solidly grounded response (sort of).


We've been going through a weird-for-weird's-sake trend in advertising in the past year or so (I'M A LITTLE LAD WHO LOVES BERRIES AND CREAM!), but I've been trying to figure out what the hell they're trying to tell us in this Scion commercial (forget for a moment the whole "why would this make me want to buy a car?" question). The whole "be a nonconformist" thing is standard issue ad copy (even if the liberal use of the word "sheeple" makes me want to vomit in my mouth), but dig that execution. This isn't "you're better than them," this is "you're better than them and you should skin them, but it's okay, because they're not people." Tear the flesh. Wear the flesh. Buy the goddamn car.

This Sour Skittles ad is deeply disturbing for a different reason: I know what "man milk" is, and that's not how you get it.

There is a fine line between "quirkily original" and "batshit insane". These ads, and the ones like them, have drawn another line about a quarter of a mile behind the batshit side, and on the far side of it dwells the unsettling impulses that make you better by not acting on them, resulting in bizarre attempts at jokes that don't really go anywhere. Living on that side of the line is living in a shabby knockoff of a Gary Larson cartoon, except the guy who drew your world doesn't really "get" it. In other words, you just woke up in The Dark Backward. Congratulations. Don't drink anything, don't eat anything, don't talk to the locals.

If that side of the line was a wild animal, you'd shoot it because you're afraid it had rabies, and only after the deed was done would you find out it was foaming because foaming is "funny".

The moral (as always): you are diseased, young America, but far from incurable. Return to the Doublemint twins. No more man milk, I beg of thee.