Monday, February 28, 2022

TUCKER CARLSON PANTING OVER PUTIN'S RAW SEXUALITY

Demonstrating that rightwing morons cream in their panties at every breath a brutal despot makes, Fox News bloatfart Tucker Carlson in a number of opinions he voiced recently showed that Putin is the Jock Du Jour for the American fascist resurgence. Several times he practically melted on air. Or, to put it differently, the more I hear of Republican reactions to the Ukraine war, the more I pray that the Republican Party and its rank and file rot in hell.

This past weekend I had to ask one of the rightwing yutzes inanely blathering in the backroom if he could actually spell 'Putin'. He was unable to answer. He's a Trump voter, of course.
On a slightly different subject, nearly three thousand people die every day from Covid 19 in the United States, mostly unvaccinated Republicans and rightwing vaccine sceptics. Which is well over sixty one thousand every month. That's a price I'm willing to pay. It's acceptable.

The vaccine refusers are walking targets for infection: that also is acceptable.
Many of them will die despite administering essential oils: acceptable.


What is NOT acceptable is the risks to the under-five demographic caused by so many people including parents walking around without masks in public.
Or the immunocompromised.



Rightwing lubriciousness over Putin's staggering Christian machismo, plus the continued pandemic which American society is more and more ready to ignore are only slightly related. But there is a connection. It is not coincidental that pervasive scientific stupidity, fascist ideas, and Christianity thrive in the following places: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Collectively 'The Shithole States'.
Fox News Country.




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Sunday, February 27, 2022

PUTIN'S LOYAL FRATBOYS

For reasons which do not interest me in the slightest, both the rightwing and the leftwing in Latin America are supporting Putin. There are reasons why one shouldn't visit those countries, quite apart from their corruption, inefficiencey, and pervasive ties to narcotics, extortion, rapine, slaughter, and bananas. Oh, and the fact that after WWII they welcomed Nazi warcriminals.
But let us not get into that; detailing these matters would take all night.

Brazil is particularly loathesome in these regards, besides always cheating at soccer. The entire country is one giant favela, with a homicide rate that's staggering, plus kidnappings, extortion, and violent robberies on a stupendous scale. To which the local educated elites turn a blind eye, blaming those problems on international bankers, Americans, and globalists.

Brazil is, of course, best known for a bean sludge with inedible things.
It is their most significant cultural achievement.
They have little art or literature.

Given all that, support for Vladimir Putin was almost inevitable.
A nekulturni "hero" for a people who worship that.
Onbeschofte klooijakken.


Next up (possibly): why Belarus is the Florida of Europe.



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ONE LEG, NEW OR USED, CAUCASIAN SPARE PARTS

The turkey vulture, who is a bit ghoulish, often uses the internet to research ways he can get closer to his goal of devouring the little girl hamster who visits nearly everyday, who is a great friend of the fuchsia cat and likes to dance. I have never actually witnessed the boogie woogie conga, but the sheep and the senior teddy bear have assured me it is a regular event, joyous yet decorous. When I get home, nothing is broken, there are no evidences of riotous behaviours, and everyone seems happier.

I myself could not join in boogie woogie conga (led by the little girl hamster) because when I get home my right leg hurts like bejazus and is buggered up to a fare-thee-well, and takes an hour or so to sufficiently recover so that I can enjoy the rest of the evening.
Falling asleep is sometimes a bit of a problem.

It is a defective body part.
The turkey vulture has on occasion also used my computer to search the internet for suppliers of 'fatty inner thighs', which he wishes to devour. I feel that this search is pointless; he should go whole hog and look for an entire leg, in decent condition, to replace the one which is hosed, which probably has no resale value anyhow, he can have it once I've replaced it.

It's a worthwhile project.



After all, klopsing someone over the head in Marin County, where I work, is still, regretably, not a viable course of action. Even though I could use a new right leg, the turkey vulture wants to eat some fatty inner thighs, we need to fertilize the victory garden with some high grade bio waste, and there are plenty of useless bourgeois droodges there anyhow.

And I refuse to consider the vegetarian alternative.
Tofu just can't support a full body weight.



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Saturday, February 26, 2022

THE USEFUL PORPOISE

Going out for a last smoke late at night in the darkened streets of the city, one realizes that the streets aren't actually that dark. One can read out there. Except that they are a little too noisy, as there are skeevy types, tipsy yuppies, and just plain weirdoes about.
So the mind wanders as much as as the feet will roam.

REFLECTIONS WITH A COMMON THEME RUNNING THROUGH THEM

There must be some way that the governement can shut down Fox Corporation for spreading lies, disinformation, and Russian propaganda. Other than broadcasting the Simpsons they serve no good purpose, and arguing that they have constitutional protection is specious.
Also, it's time to authorize ivermectin, essential oils, and bleach as treatments for Republicans hospitalized with Covid; they too serve no useful purpose.


On Friday and Saturday I got to listen to the conservatives blathering about events. I myself no longer speak with them, because one cannot have a useful conversation with people still angry that they lost the Civil War (one of them is also upset that we lost the Vietnam war, even though he never would have met his current wife if we hadn't), and they're a bunch of narrow minded mean spirited f*ckers.

Hearing their discussion was instructive. They deem themselves pretty smart cookies.
And they have solutions to all af the world's problems.


I watched that Vietnamese American "make America great, great again, Donald Trump" video on youtube again. Good lord those people are morons.


Donald Trump, Mike Pompeo, and Tucker Carlson are traitors and Russian assets.

I've given up trying to explain Texas, I just can't; it's a f*cking shithole state.


By the way, the title of this post contains a glaring misspelling.
It was done on purpose; a lighthearted note of silliness.
The Republicans I know wouldn't understand.
Spelling is not their skillset.
Nor reading.



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Friday, February 25, 2022

FEEDING YOUR HOUSEGUESTS

As everyone here knows, the turkey vulture (Sydney Fylbert) likes his tucker. I mean, he really really likes it. Eating is his favourite activity, and his appetites are often the reason why the other roomies look at him askance, or even threaten him with a smack down. He says that the imaginary little girl hamster who visits every afternoon looks like a delicious juicy meatball.
And he wishes to find out what she tastes like.

The other roomies are VERY fond of Clarissa (the little girl hamster).
And will not countenance a rapacious skeevy type eating her.
Often, the auras of menace nearly strangle him.
Some of the roomies are dangerous.

So, of course, we share our food with him. To disfamiliarize him with the natural diet of turkey vultures in the wild. Which are things like cow cadaver washed up on the banks of the Ganges (well, Sacramento River in this case) and dead seagulls out in the mudflats that line the bay. Along with pearlescent unidentifiable critters long expired.

They're nature's little frat boys.

For some queer reason he thinks that his natural diet includes cabbages and little cherry turnovers, as well as in summer delicious bowls of icecream. Or it should.
And charming little girl hamsters.


For a long time, whenever I finished a drawing of a briar pipe or Hong Kong or a particular food stuff, he would paintively ask when it was his turn to be illustrated. Why didn't I ever paint him? Wasn't he good enough?
Well, it was finally his turn . I think the resultant illustration shows the stark beauty and majesty of a carrion eater very well. He's reclining on my bed, looking expectant -- surely there will be something good to eat -- not fully cognizant of the fact that I don't eat breakfast, and won't be around for several hours. There are bags of cookies nearby, he'll have to snack on those if he gets peckish before I return.

There might be sausage after that. Curry wurst.
Using some Thai curry paste for flavour.
Plus mixed vegetables.


This is the perfect food for a turkey vulture.
Makes their feathers glossy.



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Thursday, February 24, 2022

LAST DAY OF REAL FOOD

Heading into the work week, which starts tomorrow, I always enjoy the last few hours of sanity and real food. Had lunch at a chachanteng, and after smoking my pipe and shopping went for another cup of milk tea and an egg tart at a bakery. Which was crowded. As it often is in mid afternoon. Normally I do not deal well with crowds at all. But there was a place to sit, on the periphery, and I recognized most of the people there. Friendly nods, then a peaceful half hour of listening to other folks chatting.

I've realized that one of the things I like about Chinatown is that though I stand out because I'm Caucasian, it's considerably less than among fellow Caucasians where I stand out because of my "English" accent, which irritates the spit out of some people, who insist on treating me as if I'm some foreigh Masonic or Russian agent.

Chinatown simply is a more welcoming environment.

In internet reviews of the place where I work, I'm identified as 'the Englishman'.


In Chinatown, if I'm mentioned at all, it's probably "the Lofan who reads and writes".

Perhaps "old white dude who speaks Cantonese".

Which, given how anti-foreign white Americans are in general, is much better. After being told so many times to go back where I came from, despite actually being back where I came from, you will understand that I have little trust in most of my fellow Americans and sure as heck do not wish to visit the other states. Y'all dress funny, talk weird, and eat too much.

Besides, I've seen what you eat. It's crap.



The lady who sold me the filled buns and the glutinous rice balls asked me if I was Chinese. Which, considering my big nose and grey eyes, is both odd and amusing. Personally I don't think I could look any more white, but apparently she didn't see that.
For over three hours I didn't speak a single word of English.
Spoke English again with my landlady downstairs.
When giving her some of the food.
She's Canto-American.
Born here.



I am bitterly resentful that Trump and those crap-fer-brains convoy truckers are considered more American than I or the locals will be for the next few days at work. My ancestors arrived here in 1630. Trump's grandaddy was a German draftdodger. And his wives? Hoo hah!




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EAT YOUR GRITS -- WITH SOME FOO YUNG!

The only good thing that can come out of this is that a few people in the red states will perhaps finally realize that Donald Trump, Mike Pompeo, Candace Owens, and Tucker Carlson, are Russian assets. And they might actually figure out that the Ukraine is NOT in Africa, as they thought -- a continent most of the ignorant savages in Mississippi couldn't locate on a map if it came up and bit them on their fat rear ends -- but is somewhere closer to Austria. A place they know about because they saw a documentary (actually, 'The Sound Of Music') in a history class once.

But it's all so very far away. Might as well be Ottowa or New Hampshire.


[I'm using Mississippi as a metaphor and stand-in for all the shitholes states: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.]



Other than wanting to see Russia, Putin, Fox News, Trump, Pompeo, Owens, Carlson, and Mississippi, destroyed, I have no actual horse in this race. Opinions, yes, of course, but that's much like everyone else, including the cigar-huffing rightwing morons I have to deal with regularely who are probably worried that their stock portfolios will tank.

Or that this might make Trump look less golden.


With Putin's diarrhea on his face.


Ass kisser.




To get your mind off this subject, and to interject the sweetness and light that you have come to expect from this blog, here's a classic recipe from the Chinese American Culinary repertoire which is easy and doable, even in darkest Mississippi. Where it would be considered impossibly exotic and refined. Modern living at it's best, oh my!

Food, always, is a such happy subject.

This goes well with grits.

芙蓉蟹
[Fu Yung Hai - Velvety omelette with crab meat]

1兩 (one ounce) 蟹肉 (crab meat).
2支 (two stalks) 青蔥 (scallion).
4個 (four) 蛋 (eggs).
少許 (a pinch) 鹽 Salt).
2大匙 (two tablespoons) 油 (oil).

½杯 (half a cup) 高湯 (superior stock).
1大匙 (one tablespoon) 醬油 (soy sauce).
½小匙 (half a teaspoon) 大白粉 (tapioca flour).
少許 (a small pinch) 糖 (sugar).


Remove all shell fragments from the crab meat, rinse and chop the scallion. Gently beat the eggs till smooth, add the pinch of salt, the oil, the crab meat, and the chopped scallion.

Mix the tapioca flour with a little cold water.

Heat some oil in the wok, pour in the egg mixture, cook till barely set, and slide onto a plate. Wipe any fragments of the omelette out of the wok, add a drizzle oil, and when hot pour in the superior stock and soy sauce, adding the pinch of sugar. After two minutes or so of cooking, stir in the dissolved tapioca flour and when the sauce becomes glossy pour it over the omelette. Add a drizzle of fragrant sesame oil and some minced cilantro.


Please note: Amazon delivers. Even in Mississippi.
You can mail-order all of the ingredients.
Even the damned grits.



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Wednesday, February 23, 2022

IMAGINE SLOW MOTION IN RED SWIMMING TOGS

Despite my temperature-based misgivings (and will you East-Coasters PLEASE take your chill back, we don't want it) I headed out for lunch around teatime. Small grocery purchases before diving into a familiar place. Spicy crawfish flavour potato chips (香辣小龍蝦味薯片 'heung lat siu lung haa syu pin') for the apartment mate and the turky vulture, pineapple flaky pastries (鳳梨酥 'fung lei sou') for all of us here, including the other fuzzy critters.
I didn't even know that they made spicy crawdaddy chips.
I've already tried the cucumber flavoured ones.
They were oddly refreshing.

Conversation with two elderly Taiwanese ladies (eighty years old? You do not look it, auntie) enjoying desserts while I gasakked lap mei flavoured stirfried cabbage flowers and rice. Cantonese mixed with Mandarin mixed with English mixed with Min Nan. Fascinating women. And really, not at all old looking. Well yes, older looking than me. But I'm still a youngster.

When they were little girls the Japanese still ruled Taiwan.
Shortly after the war, the Nationalists arrived.
Things "changed".

One has to admire people who have been through interesting times and still maintain a sense of grace and liveliness.
That's something I hope people eventually say about me, but I was born well after the war, and haven't actually done anything remarkable. I guess I'll have to start exaggerating stuff. "Boy, when I was younger we colonized Mars. The government shut down the programme, but they couldn't silence all of us." Or "in my day we still made nuclear power by rubbing to two rocks together till critical mass was achieved. Sure we lost some of our hair doing so, but you can't make an omelette without pre-programming the food-bot."

On Waverly it was cold, but not as bad as yesterday. Bearable. With a thick Canadian overcoat and two layers of socks. So the post lunch pipe was actually enjoyable this time. Perhaps we are losing the cold spell and going back to our tropical high fifties.

Which means I can go back to sneering at and snarking pipe smokers in the rest of the country who are lamenting the freezing temps in their necks of the wood and how can anyone smoke outside when there are snow drifts and their kinfolk have bolted the door so that they expire shivering in the arctic cold dammit what's wrong with this world it didn't used to be so effing cold and heartless waaaaaaaaa!


Which is true. We used to be able to smoke our pipes indoors.
Surrounded by plastic bags, meat, and gluten.
And sugary soft drinks.



The title of this essay was inspired by European ideas about California, which are all based on watching Bay Watch. All of us pipesmokers look like David Haselhoff. Trust me. Would I lie?



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THE BUTTERFLY COLLECTION

Because of possible adverse interactions of my medicine with alcohol I abstain from booze. But before that became an issue, I would occasionally have a Scotch and water, or an Irish whisky (or two) once a week where a friend and I would observe the owner becoming progressively more insane over the years. We still go there, but I'll have a glass of hot water.

There was also a period when I went to a place around the corner to utilize the building portico as a pipe smoking haunt in the evening. My drink, which I barely touched, would wait upstairs at the bar while I would be downstairs puffing on a bent Peterson and dreaming. After I stopped going there because they started catering to a younger more insane crowd, I switched to another bar which had tables in front, where I haven't been since early 2019.

If you have to be outside to enjoy your pipe, there is really no point in patronizing any drinking establishment.


But I approve of booze. It gives many people with nothing on their minds something to do.
And there is no evidence that even suggests that it further damages the braindead.


There are three cocktails which I occasionally (meaning: hardly ever) indulge in any more: The Manhattan, the Grasshopper, and the Henry Darger.

The Manhattan is two ounces rye whiskey, one ounce sweet vermouth, two dashes bitters. Shaken over ice, poured into a Martini glass, and garnished with a cherry. This is a drink popularized by a Simpson episode in which Bart ends up bartending for the 'Legitimate Businessman's Club' where Fat Tony and his pals hang out.
Which is what introduced me to it.

Grasshopper Cocktail: One ounce Crème de Menthe, one ounce clear Crème de Cacao, one ounce half&half. Shake well over ice and pour into a large cocktail glass. For a perverse touch, add a cherry. I intellectually like this because it's absolutely degenerate, and very much a drink from the day and age of rock and roll, polyester, and American middle class alcoholism.

The Henry Darger: Two ounces bourbon, a maraschino cherry, and a dash of grenadine. Squirt of ginger ale. Two or three drops of bitters. Poured over ice in a highball (long drink) glass. No cherry.

Henry Darger was the "genius" who wrote "The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What is known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinnian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion". A magnum opus of over fifteen thousand pages, with hundreds of illustrations, about pubescent heroines making daring escapes, fighting fiercely, being tortured, along with supernatural elements, general cruelty, and decadent spookiness.
Fifteen thousand pages, plus. About pubescent girls.
I invented this drink to torture bartenders.


Intellectually I also favour sherry. It seems both innocent and sweetly wicked at the same time. Something a librarian would drink, or a teenage boy would hide in the chemistry lab at school. A suitable drink for girl scouts, or neurotic old ladies solving crimes in a picturesque village near Dartmoor. What the doctor has in the locked cabinet that patients never see. Or gouty Uncle Mortimer keeps near his favourite chair in the darkened room at the top of the house, where the servants never go and his relatives all know not to bother him while he writes spidery annotations to his butterfly collection. "Got this one in the Amazon Basin in '97 while fleeing from the Yakayapu and their spears." "Sungei Galap, Borneo, on a prolonged quinine jag." "Escaping with the heathen idol's eye, I spotted this beaut."

Unce Mortimer gets sidetracked rather easily.

There is no sherry on the premises.

Which is tragic.



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WHINING ABOUT THE WEATHER

Yesterday evening it was 40°F, with a biting breeze. It had proven too cold to continue smoking my pipe outdoors, despite wearing my thick Canadian overcoat. This was worse than Monday. Naturally I am blaming the government. A man can only take so much. What's the point of having a stash of delicious tobacco and a lovely pipe when it's so abysmally frigid that you cannot enjoy it?

Lunch, on the other hand, had been excellent. Bittermelon beef over rice with sploodges of hot sauce. The place was nearly empty, seeing as getting there would have meant mounting an expedition with naked bearers trekking through the Arctic wilderness, and many Cantonese are, when it's a frozen wasteland outside, hesitant to wander away from the burning sled dog corpses keeping them warm in their tents. Or something like that. Even the white yuppies, who normally flock to the streetside parklets on Polk Street, were getting plotzed inside shoulder to shoulder with strangers whose pandemic history they did not know.

Yeah, I know that on the East Coast you all are used to bitter cold; it's your native environment or something. You thrive when you can take pictures of your car in your driveway looking like a giant cotton ball and send them to your friends. See? We've got weather here!
Unlike you wussies in Australia, bally kangaroos!

Then you mob the stores and panic-buy all the white bread and toilet paper.
Because if the snow lasts, you still have plans.
The crapper is part of that.

Those last two blocks homeward I passed piles of naked cadavers; joggers and people who were walking their dogs when the cold felled them. They were probably glad that West Nile Fever, Zika, Dengue, or Malaria would not be a worry for several months.


Or earthquakes and wild fires.


FORTY DAMNED DEGREES!




I need to blame someone for this.
It's probably those Nazi truckers heading to Washington.
We need pyres of MAGA flags in the streets for warmth, and to keep the schools open.


Seriously wondering what I'm doing for lunch today.
I don't want to go outside at all.
Bloody Republicans!

Hot sauce. Milk tea. A pipe.
Dammit.

Just bellyaching about the weather, child. It's what we Dutchmen do. We're old and we know things. Plus we're crotchetty, and we need dead bodies to burn.
Must hoard white bread and toilet paper.



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Tuesday, February 22, 2022

BUDWEISER, COORS, MICHELOB, AND HEINEKEN

All fratboys should drink beer. Being drunk and comatose makes them bearable. The ladies in the second floor apartment across the street like fratboys, and invite them over to partay.
I do not approve of them.

I used to like beer, until I came to this country, and discovered what my fellow Americans drank.
When we left the U.S. during my infancy I was not old enough to drink beer.
We went to a place where beer is better. Way better.
That's not why we went there.


BUDWEISER, COORS, MICHELOB, AND HEINEKEN

And that explains why I wish there were places serving cups of tea that are open late at night. According to an idiot American politician in the seventies, Americans living overseas were all mink-swathed parasites dodging taxes. The tea overseas is better too.
He was probably some yutz driving the tractor all over the north forty while chewing baccy and spitting, and assuredly a Republican who swilled crappy American beer.

If he ain't dead yet, he'll probably croak of Covid. Soon.

That type goes to church, disbelieves science, votes for Nazis, and swills beer.
Vaccines have a microchip, masks are Satanic infringements.
Critical Race Theory is a commie plot.
Dang Yankee liberals!

If they've figured out the remote control, they watch Fox. If not, the set is still tuned to the same channel that broadcast Lawrence Welk in the seventies and shows fundamentalist preachers afterwards. Interrupted by commercials for sh*tty American beer.

Wouldn't you rather have nice clean cut college boys hepped on tea roistering about late at night in your neighborhood than fratboys and fox viewers who've had too much beer?
At least they won't puke in your doorway.
Or hijack the tractor.


Well, they might hijack the tractor. Youthful hijinks and all that.
All over the British Isles there are tractors on the roads at three in the morning, Oxford and Cambridge men looking for a place that will serve them tea and scones. They're a threat to the American tourists quietly puking outside the pub from too much real beer. It's sad.
I think I'll write a strongly worded letter to the editor about that.


We'll never get rid of Covid. All over the third world there will be pockets where it festers and thrives for decades to come. West Virginia, Wyoming, Tennessee, Missouri, Florida, Mississippi, Arkansas, Idaho, Montana, Oklahoma ...



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THE ERROR OF YOUR WAYS

Most pipe tobacco sold in the United States, and in fact world wide, is aromatic. Which is GOOD news for people looking to reproduce Tewksbury's 'Hobbit's Weed', as all the parts should be easily available, either at your local smoke emporium or on-line.

Two parts BCA, one part Lane's Very Cherry, and one part Sutliff 1M. Note that the first and the last are vanilla tobaccos.

With this recipe, you can put on your grandma's bathrobe, not shave for a day, and ponce around stuffing the appropriate pipe-weed into that cheap pear wood churchwarden made by an Eastern European company that you bought off the internet, muttering elvish or hobbit-like things, and being effing insufferable while battling imaginary orcs.

Please also note that the spirit of J. R. R. Tolkien thinks you're an idiot.

Tolkien himself smoked Capstan, Gold Block, and Erinmore Flake.

Straight Virginia Flake, Virginia Ribbon, Troll Virginia.


A friend recently horrified two other pipesmokers I know by lighting up a vanilla fruit-loop blend in the backyard while visiting, attracting coyotes and turkey vultures convinced that some poor beast had died and keen to fight over the corpse. Naturally, he's fond of churchwarden pipes.
It is unknown whether he has a goofy Middle Earth thing going on, or harbours a Hobbit fetish.
I suspect he does.Personally, I wouldn't intercourse a Hobbit with a ten foot pole, but to every man his jollies, no matter how childish or berserk. Damned perverts.

Orcs, as is well known, do not smoke Hobbits Weed.
Captain Black Grape, or Watermelon.
Good intercoursing grief.


I did NOT know that watermelon flavoured pipe tobacco existed until last night, when, not being able to sleep because of irritated nodules on my fingers caused by exposure to chemicals for de-oxidizing pipe stems and various other irritants used in cleaning and polishing a few filthy old pipes that belong to an elderly deviant who won't invest in decent briar or take care of the poor beasts but treasures leprous old smokers he's tortured for years (bashing away at the rims for many decades; there is no semblance even of the original shape there) and clogging them up to a fare-thee-well with rancid gunk by smoking sickening sugared blends degenerate son-of-a-bitch, I cruised into a pipe forum on the internet.

Smells like hobbit.

Boys, some of you lot are intercoursing disgusting. Please treat your pipes exactly like your underpants. They'll function best if you rotate them, clean them regularly, and don't bash them against brick walls. Do NOT encrust them with tar or soggy deposits. They shouldn't feel sticky to the touch. They'll smell better too, and your family wil tolerate you more.
Assuming that you actually have relatives.

I am selective about the fellow pipe smokers I associate with.
Sometimes I make mistakes.



AFTER WORD

The first pipe this morning, while it was still dark outside, was a bowlful of Greg Pease's 'Embarcadero'. Which is a lovely pressed red Virginia with some Oriental leaf. It is complex, decadent, and very pleasing. Has a mild sweetness, and the fragrance in the chill dawn air evokes old times. Spring in Brabant, the sunlight streaming into the drafting office, metal polish, that hidden bottle of sherry in the school library, landing the old crate at the airfield on the hill top overlooking emerald rice paddies, the docks where the national constabulary unloaded contraband they had seized and planned to sell, and driving the jeep past the scene of an incident the papers never heard anyhting about and let's make sure of that.

Makes the mind wander. In a good way.



TOBACCO INDEX


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HARDENED SOUL BRAVES BLIZZARD CONDITIONS

Whenever I see white people walking around in busy areas without masks, I fight the urge to say "hey man, talk some Mississippi for me". Because, naturally, I automatically think they're from a red state where stupidity is a virtue. More so in Chinatown than anywhere else. But of course not all of the tourists wandering around there are from the outback.
Some are from the suburbs or Europe.

Here's a helpful chart:
The top ten are the equivalent of France. In many ways.

Main difference is that they eat "freedom fries".
Twenty two states over a hundred.
Three under fifty.


It was beastly cold yesterday. For some reason I also saw people wearing shorts. They must have thought they were in California. Sorry, y'all, Baywatch took place seven hundred miles south of here, on a different planet, where everyone runs slo mo toward the breakers in glorious sunlight. For that kind of weather, head to Tampa. You. Will. Love. It. There.



One of the things that happens like clockwork on the internet forums is that some desperate Johnny in the Northeast or Minnesota writes: "How do you other pipesmokers even do it? It's freezing outside, the heater in the garage gave out, or my backporch got buried by a blizzard (helpfully includes photo), and the wife won't let me puff away inside! We just installed new carpet and she hates the smell of my tobacco!" And, like clockwork, the Californians on the forum respond with snark. Because we're unsympathetic and dislike those people.
Most helpful advice is to get a divorce and buy a shack.
Fishing hut out on the frozen lake.
When I got home from having tea across the hill and a pipe afterwards, it was 48 degrees.
It was a jaunty briar made by Comoy decades ago, in perfect condition.
One of the best smokes I've ever had.

Look here, cowboy, in San Francisco 48 degrees is arctic.
I know Maine and New Hampshire are "different".
We were working on our suntans.
Until yesterday.

There were hardened smokers dressed in Northface passed out on their lawns.
Stiff and rigid, and moaning "urk, urk, urk".
Poor frozen corpses.



TOBACCO INDEX


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Monday, February 21, 2022

THE BITCH NUTS! OR, IS CANDACE OWENS A PSYCHOPATH?

It's a valid question. Candace Owens called for the United States to invade Canada. No, not because they have oil or bananas, which are our usual reasons for military intervention, but because Trudeau had had enough of the rabid dog "truckers" sabotaging the economy and throwing big ole hissies.


STOP talking about Russia. Send American troops to Canada to deal with the tyrannical reign of Justin Trudeau Castro. He has fundamentally declared himself dictator and is waging war on innocent Canadian protesters and those who have supported them financially.
--- Candace "raving dingo" Owens [2:58 AM · Feb 20, 2022]


One could say she's out of her mind. But that's ignoring two things, namely that there is no mind for her to be out of there, and her demand reflects mainstream Republican thinking.

Her comments mirror those of other right-wing morons, including Donald Trump.

So she's definitely crazy. But is she a psychopath?


Psychopath: a chronically nuts person evincing abnormal and/or violent behavior.


That perfectly describes Donald Trump and many Fox News personalities, as well as all the Republicans I am forced to deal with on occasion. But she might just be a Christian.
As well as simply ignorant crypto-Nazi slime.
That ALSO perfectly describes the Republicans I've dealt with.
Many of whom couldn't find Canada on a map.
Hint: it's bigger than Texas.
Pillocks.



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HELP, I NEED SANCTUARY!

When I returned from a walk and pipe, the doorway into the apartment was partially blocked by toilet paper packs. Two dozen rolls. Asking my apartment mate about this obviously abandoned domestic project -- moving the bumwad from the hallway along the wall to the bathroom, and leaving it halfway the distance, I got the answer: "Stonehenge".
The fabled and as yet not discovered "tissue henge".
I think she simply left it there.
To be continued.

So I mentioned to her that all over Britain there are, in fact, much smaller magic monumental circles. If you're not careful, you might stumble over them and destroy them.
Made by the little people. Pixies.

Constructed of 'faecaliths'.

A fecalith is an encrusted lump of hardened digestive system waste matter that occurs in some patients with Chagas disease, Hirschsprung's disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and sometimes in the case of appendicitis.

Which reminded her of the time two and half years ago when I ruined her weekend by waking her up at five in the morning to go to the hospital because my appendix had ruptured. Because "unlike a sensible person", I had not gone to the hospital two days earlier when the pain began, but "no, you waited till the most inconvenient moment possible to wake me up by suffering".
That was on Aidswalk morning. My exploded internal organ severely inconvenienced her. Delayed her participation in a yearly ritual by a few hours.
Sorry. It also inconvenienced me.

Anyhow, stone circles.
With dancing fairies around them in bosky glades. How beautiful! I have explained this also to people at work, and instead of telling me to shut the Eff up, as she guessed that they would have, they gazed at me with rapt attention. Because of course normal people are enchanted by the idea of fecaliths. There probably wasn't a fecalith birthing in my bowels -- surely the doctor would have preserved it in a jar of vinegar and presented it to me when they released me from the ICU five days later, I'm just guessing -- and in any case fecaliths, when they occur, are just one per person, so it would have taken possibly decades of dead people to harvest enough of them to build a circle. England represents several centuries of humans dying for the benefit of fairies. Selfless sacrifice that made the world a better place.


Anyhow, I had never even mentioned 'faecaliths' to her before now -- strange, it's such a fascinating and important subject -- but now I fear I may never hear the end of it
I think I need a place to hide out for the rest of the day.


The other thing I've been told today is that in a zombie apocalypse, the royal family has nothing to fear. There's nothing there that would attract the zombies, they'd walk right past them.
Zombies aren't looking for fecaliths.



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FATTY INNER THIGHS

When I woke up this morning it was with the cheery 'Fatty Inner Thigh' song ringing in my ears. Reason being the turkey vulture, singing. He's heard about the old fellows that often hang out where I work, and has this fond hope that I can just whack one of them over the head and then harvest turkey vulture food from the still warm corpse. Also, he insists that the next time I go to Chinese Hospital for a doctor's appointment, I bring him along. He'll just clean up the left-overs, surely no one will notice. Just some stringy old folks!

Although he says he prefers white meat.

I've explained to him that any old folks there would poke at him and exclaim at the plumpness, and speculate that whatever this bird is, it's "hou fei ge", and therefore undoubtedly good with mashed garlic (蒜茸 'suen yong') and a dash of soy sauce (豉油 'si yau').
No matter. He's convinced he can outsmart them. They're old.
Anyway, let's talk about the white meat.

On a day when the apartment mate does not have to head off to work, Sydney Fylbert is especially rambunctious. And clearly, Presidents Day is an occasion to celebrate fatty inner thighs and white meat. The best part of the fresh corpse. The holiday was made for this.
No, not mine. He says I need to eat more, I'm too stringy, and why am I this way?
It's very disappointing!


I have explained to him that the staff and patients at Chinese Hospital might object strongly to a little black-feathered ghoul wandering around the hallways, and poking at a few likely victims speculatively, as well as the chance that some myopic old lady would mistake him for a chicken and lie in wait for him with a cleaver. Mmm, fresh meat!

Also, that in any case, whether at the "Stunted Dwarf's Daycare for Smelly Old Suburbanites" where I work, or at the hospital, offing old people and harvesting body parts is just not done. At the very least, society frowns upon that, and questions would be asked. The authorities would look severely askance at it. Frowny faces.


It is quiet now. The apartment mate has gone back to her room to nap a bit, the turkey vulture is on my bed looking blissful, and the sun is shining in to the teevee room where I am at the computer wondering how soon I should put on street clothes and head out for a smoke. I'm probably going to head out relatively early; there is no chance of smoking indoors today.

Maybe that new chachanteng has finally opened? It's very close to convenient alleys where a man can smoke in peace and quiet without angry earthmothers from Berkeley screaming that you're destroying their lungs and tobacco is flithy filthy filthy om shanti dolphins!
Such as they customarily do in the Financial District.
Speaking of fatty inner thighs.

Fortunately Berkeleyites seldome venture into Chinatown. It's too far uphill for their short stumpy legs, there are no Guatamalan fabrics or naturally sourced wheatgrass beverages, everything has gluten, and it's a colonialist construct that offends their sensibilities.
And they've heard that their body parts might be harvested.


He was close. He was real close. You can not see him yet but you can feel him. Like the boat is being sucked up river and the water is flowing back to the jungle. Whatever is going to happen, it's not going to be the way they think at People's Park.

Hey, man, you don't talk to the Colonel. You listen to him. The man's enlarged my mind. He's a poet-warrior in the classic sense. I mean sometimes he'll, uh, well, you'll say hello to him, right? And he'll just walk right by you, and he won't even notice you. And suddenly he'll grab you, and he'll throw you in a corner, and he'll say do you know that if is the middle word in life? If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, if you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, I mean I'm no, I can't... , I'm a little man, I'm a little man, he's, he's a great man. I should have been a pair of ragged claws scuttling across floors of silent seas, I mean... , fatty inner thighs, man.

Fatty inner thighs.

Oh boy.



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Sunday, February 20, 2022

ADVICE TO IRMGARD

A recent post here rather indicated that I might not be a suitable person charged with the oversight of the very young. On the other hand, as the avuncular sort ("Uncle Stinky"), I am excellent at given advice to young adults who have recently graduated from college or are about to. Or even such people working on an advanced degree who may not have given certain things much thought.

Here, then are some general words of advice to a fictional young lady.

Let's call her 'Irmgard'.


UNDERWEAR
Avoid tight and too small. Comfort and cleanliness are goals. And while bikini briefs and French cuts look charming, they are rather pointless unless you plan to disrobe at work. If you ARE planning to disrobe there, might I suggest checking yourself into the booby hatch first? Consider wearing boxer shorts in any case. You might find them comfortable. And as regards brassieres, a perfect fit will be easier to achieve if you have a saleslady measure you. You don't want painful constriction or wobbly bobbly. Avoid overmuch lace, as it can peek out, or snag.

PANTS
Not yoga pants. Something loose and comfortable, yet surdy enough for active wear. With pockets. Pockets are extremely important. Absolutely insist on pockets.

PAJAMAS
Comfy.

PIPES
A conservative shape, standard black carbon rubber mouthpiece, straight rather than bent. Straight is easier to clean, and a carbon rubber bit, rather than those frou-frou coloured jobbies which are quite popular nowadays, will prove more comfortable between the teeth and less likely to attract the attention of dubious people.

By the way: beverages to sip while enjoying your pipe are tea or coffee. Many people suggest Scotch or other liquors, but civilized people do not drink before the cocktail hour.
After teatime, it is perfectly okay to have some sherry.

SHIRTS
Opaque fabric, buttoned up to above the cleavage. You are not a plumber's ass.

SHOES
Sensible.


If you are male (let's call you 'Manfred'), then all of the above, plus a daily shave, to avoid that Miami Vice suburban putz yuppie look. A small neat beard is okay, such as mine, but it might cause people to question your morals or impute imaginary vices. Avoid the full beard; you are not a philosopher or a vagrant.



I have a mental picture of Irmgard smoking a standard billiard (such as the one below) filled with Rattray's Old Gowrie or Brown Clunee, while reading on her backporch. There is a teacup on the table next to her, as well as an ashtray, matches, and a packet of pipe cleaners.
Rattrays tobaccos, like the two I mentioned, are old fashioned solid products reflective of civilized habits and good values. Aromatics are indicative of flightiness and immorality.
Rattrays does produce one or two aromatics for the pervy demographic.
Those are later additions, often caused by Kohlhase and Kopf.
Their marketing department is mentally unstable.

As for reading while smoking, I suggest a murder mystery with lots of juicy details. Unless you know precisely how the banker was dismembered, what's the point?



AFTERWORD

I myself do not have a backporch. I take walks, and for this weather I have sweaters. Sweaters are good. During the morning I can often get away with smoking inside, as long as I have the windows wide open and my apartment mate's door is firmly shut. Sweaters are good.

I do not have sherry on the premises.
There is plenty of tea.



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FLOATATION DEVICES! I NEED FLOTATION DEVICES!

When you look into the trusting eyes of a child, you wonder how long you'll be able to resist telling them a stupendous lie. Something that they'll believe for years, till they realize that "oh my gerd Uncle Stinky was pulling my leg! There are no dinosaurs working as lounge singers in Vegas! They all died in an accident billions of years ago! They didn't invent rock and roll!
And my parents weren't on the run from the law at all! They're middle class!"

You need to seriously think about your actions.

You are a very bad man.


Uncle Stinky regrets not having children of his own. They'd have such interesting childhoods! On the other hand, when I am old and grey and in a wheelchair, no one who pushes me out to the designated municipal smoking area in the salt flats with all the other old fossils will have any incentive to leave me there when the tide comes in. So I guess that's a good thing.
Strangely, none of my friends who have kids -- and I'm convinced that they're all drunks and potsmokers, because that would explain things -- will allow me anywhere near their offspring. They're probably scared stiff of what I'll tell the little brutes about what their mom and dad were like before they were born.

Your parents had ideals once, kid. They were going to change the world, lead the masses with torches and pitchforks against the factory owners, disembowel the heads of corporations, and organize society into anarcho-syndicalist collectives, where members would take turns being chief executive for a week. Important matters would be put to a vote, requiring a simple majority in case of internal affairs ...
Now they just sit around huffing pot and swilling vodka. They're drowning their sense of having completely failed. That's why they bribe you with happy meals at McDonald's, kiddo.
They don't want you to notice how miserable they are.

You should become like me.
Hot cups of tea, egg rolls cookies, and good pipe tobacco whenever I want.


By the way: here's a picture of your dad when he was your age.
Do you see the nineteen seventies clothing and haircut?
That's why he does so much pot and booze.
He wants to forget all that.
He's scarred.


I'm available for baby sitting, in case you were wondering.
Sixty dollars an hour and snacks.
It will be instructive.
Build character.




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Saturday, February 19, 2022

FEELS GOOD, DOESN'T IT?

My apartment building is profoundly boring. From the front steps, when I walk outside to enjoy my pipe, I can see my neighbors across the street. Three party girls and a naked guy. No, they don't live in the same digs, "four is company" or anything like that, and I don't think they actually know each other. Two different apartments. The naked guy is on the bottom floor of his building. One of the previous occupants of that place was the sad droopy person who had shoved her bed up against the window and just looked out on the street from her pillow during the first months of the pandemic. I don't know what happened to her. The naked guy is the fourth or fifth resident since she left.

Nobody in my building is naked. That is to say, I'm sure all or most of us have been naked, probably in the last forty eight hours, but I've never seen them in that condition.

I myself have been naked at least twice in the last twenty four hours.

You'll have to imagine it; no illustration will be provided.

I'm white and not overly fuzzy, if that helps.



Male nudity does not improve the smoking of a pipe. Just like female nudity it distracts, though differently. I know I suggested to the honourable members of the pipe club years ago that they should all take part in Bay To Breakers -- San Francisco's rolling seasonal nude anarchy thing, a foot race -- but they'd have a hard time keeping their briars lit the entire course.
I myself would cheer them on, in spirit, seeing as I have resolved to stay far away from running events for the rest of my life. I have no need to see jiggly bits.


Once or twice I have smoked a pipe while nude myself, but entirely without an audience. It was a warm day. Or I might have been enjoying a cup of tea and a murder mystery in the tub.

It might have even been this pipe.
It's a wonderful smoker when nude.

Quite recently, it was absolutely divine with some aged red flake in it, mmmm, heavenly!
If you, dear reader, wish to enjoy nudity while I smoke a pipe, go right ahead.
I recommend a bath, with a pot of tea and a good book.
Twiddle your silken toes in the sudsy water.
I'll imagine what it's like.

Imagine me imagining you.



TOBACCO INDEX


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Friday, February 18, 2022

SOMETHING ELSE USED TO BE THERE

Chinatown has been changing for years. What was for a long time a comfortable neighborhood for mostly Cantonese, many of them Toishanese, now also has other Chinese, and Mandarin is commonly understood. Even so, I've not patronized many of the non-Canto restaurants there. Three Shanghainese restaurants (two of which are no longer there), and one Taiwanese place. All of them for dumplings. There's just something about jiao ze (餃子) as non-Cantonese understand the concept that is infinitely appealing.

上海韭菜豬肉水餃,嘩,好食!


One restaurant I'm sort of curious about is 禦食園川菜館 ('yu sik yuen chuen choi gun'; "Royal Food Garden Sichuan Restaurant"), which goes by a hipper name in English. Judging by their prices, however, they do not cater to my kind of people. And they charge fifteen dollars for dumplings (白菜豬肉水餃 'paak choi chyu yiuk seui gaau').


My kind of people, in this particular instance, is defined as folks used to Chinatown pricing. Not fancy restaurant pricing. Places where the diners speak Cantonese, not just the staff.

The other reason I'm hesitant to go there is because I don't know squat about Sichuanese food. Spicy, of course, and there's pork. But Sichuan cuisine in the United States seems to rely overmuch on chilies in an effort to one-up the Texans or impress the machismo crowd.


For the time being I think I'll give it a pass.
I wish them success, though.



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Thursday, February 17, 2022

THINKING ABOUT CHIVE AND PORK DUMPLINGS

Chowder, baked sole with a mild garlic sauce, hot cup of milk tea. Part of the 龍脷 set lunch at a place where you rarely (never) see Caucasians (other than myself). So there's no point in mentioning the name of the restaurant; you probably wouldn't like it. Unless you speak Cantonese. Not that they discriminate against our kind, but it isn't our kind of place.
And in all honesty I'm quite fine with that.

Our kind, as is well known, prefers sweet and sour pork, kung pao something, general Tso's chicken, and shrimp-fried rice. Hot and sour soup and potstickers to start the meal, a carbonated beverage to wash it down, and a bowl of lychee ice cream to finish.
Our kind prefers to eat Chinese food in Texas.

Sweet and sour pork, kung pao, general Tso's, shrimp-fried rice, plus hot and sour soup are the five sacred dishes established as fit for white people to eat by the old China hands, based on their long experience on the South China Coast. All Chinese food ballyhooed by the food channels and culinary publications are more or less variations on these themes.
Potstickers and lychee ice cream are icing on the cake.


They also do dumplings. One of these days I'll head there for dumplings early in the day.
Which would probably be a perfect wake me up.
韭菜豬肉餃。



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LANDING AT KAITAK AIRPORT


啟德機場




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THOUGHTS ABOUT CIGAR SMOKERS

What this society needs is churchpeople going on regular tours of low places to spread the word of god. Not because habitués of such places ...