Tuesday, September 26, 2023


The doctor's appointment went very well. All the tests came back good. So the issues seem to have been resolved, and I'm sort of completely recovered (except, of course, that I have a coronary stent and am taking bloodpressure meds). It looks like my nearest and dearest will have to wait quite a while before I stop tormenting them and they can divvy up my enormous pipe tobacco stash.

The fact that they aren't pipe smokers is only a minor problem.

I'm sure I can lead at least one of them astray.

Provided that I live long enough.

As I intend to do.

After leaving a hospital I went to a chachanteng for congee and a fried dough stick (粥同一個油條). Followed, as you would expect, by a satisfying pipeful of good tobacco.
There actually is no sealscript or jinwen variant of 粥 (congee), but it's what I had (just like after two previous medical appointments), so I created one. I'm fairly certain that it existed three thousand years ago, but it was probably called something else.
The character 鬻 (nourishment, children's food; childish; straightened circumstances) seems to be ancestral, but that's a bit of a stretch, although it does show 粥 as the phonetic element. 鬲 is a tripodal pot with squat hollow legs for cooking rice. 弓 on either side shows steam and cooking vapours. My guess would be that the character originally illustrated lamb pilaf being prepared, as the ancient version clearly shows a sheep 羊 inside the constructed word.
The theatrical howls of anguish, unvoiced but never-the-less very keen, came in upon my discovery that after my pipe smoke, bank visit, and shopping, the bakery where I wished to enjoy a cup of HK milk tea and a biscuit was closed. Which is most unusual. What with being tired after walking all over hell and gone shlepping stuff and being too warmly dressed for this weather, though not when I left the house when it was cooler, my legs hurt like billy-o dagnabit, and I was grumpy and kvetchy.

Please imagine purely mental foul language in every tongue I know.
One of which is Netherlandish. Which sounds like hairballs.
Coughed up by an extremely disagreeable feline.
"Caterballing", so to speak.

Headed home with grumbles.
No tea. Despondence.

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Did my laundry yesterday at the laundromat up the road. Which is nice and clean and has a mostly sane well-bred clientele. Except for a loony. This is San Francisco, and loonies thrive like mildew here. Even when he was talking directly at me I paid him no mind. His though processes were aloud, unfiltered. Especially when he thought he was the only person who could hear him. Fortunately his thoughts shifted tracks after the third or fourth comma, and listeners were more disturbed by him than he was.

Clean clothes, and glad I left.

Went off to Chinatown for dumplings afterwards. Two vegans sat at the table next to me, and found it nearly impossible to convince their waitress that shrimp were meat. Egg was meat. The Cantonese aren't crazy, and know that a certain amount of not strictly vegetable protein contributes to happiness and good health. If the white people are so concerned, why aren't they releasing eggs in the parks as a good deed? Be free, little zygotic entity, be free!

I counted the nutballs when I was smoking a pipe later. Seven of them in half a block from the restaurant.
All of them non-Chinese.

Many insane Chinese are so well behaved that they could run for Congress.
And if you ask me, I really think that they should.
Beats the nuts we have there now.
I'd vote for them.


I am very fond of dumplings. And very glad that the crazies on the street are not.


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Monday, September 25, 2023


Research six years ago established that more Mississippi natives are drunk, horny, and yearn for Kim Kardasian, just before midnight. Presumably they've solved all those problems after that time window, possibly by trips to the internet or the men's bathroom at the bar where they're drinking. Or both, if they've figured out how to use their cellphones.

This is based on rereading one of my blogposts from from a while back where the search statistics for a popular website were mentioned.

Makes me glad I do not live in Mississippi. I would be scared to pee.

Which is very important in that state, for "reasons."
Diabetes. Sugar on everything.

Or cheese. They love cheese.

In news of the weird, China has more people with diabetes than any other country, which is not at all surprising given the huge variety of interesting sweet snacks nicely packaged in my favourite C'town grocery stores. As well as the delicious offerings at bakeries there, best washed down with Hong Kong milk tea (which is hot and sweet, just like your favourite starlets or Korean boy bands).

Also not suprising: Hong Kongers LOVE baked dishes of the pork chop on starch covered with melted cheese variety. The glue holding it all together is probably a sweetened version of tomato sauce, of which very many Americans are fond in canned vaguely Italian foods and pre-packaged supermarket pizza.

It's a miracle that San Francisco Chinatown isn't filled with rotund people. Other than the tourists, that is. From elewhere in the country (you can tell who they are because they waddle, and are rather white).

I'm quite baffled that my favourite chachantengs aren't packed with folks from Mississippi and its neighboring states gorping on HK foods. It should be right up their alley, one would think. Maybe it's because Ding Dongs aren't available there. Which are the most popular junkfood where they're from. There is a fortune to be made, if only these eateries would supply those (possibly covered with melted cheese and a sprinkle of sugar for a nice browning effect) and put up a sign that said "we have ice tea!"

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When you are trying to escape Changi airport it's easy to get distracted by satai kambing. Then one of the members of the Sales Department sees you, and you never get out. You wonder whether you should have stayed and had another cocktail at the bar where that Australian surfer dude works. And you wake up sweaty and shivering. Credit the entire dream sequence to your high-blood pressure meds.

Which I was warned about, and which have been a semi-regular occurence.

[Sorry, the company insisted on your trip too fast to process the necessary travel paperwork. You still don't have all the proper documents and will have to stay at the airport for a few days. Hide out at near the food-court, there are showers somewhere near there. Yes, it is humid, isn't it? Can you live on pastries in the meantime? Good! There's sushi too!]

There was also a dream involving Nickolaus Copernicus and Johannes Keppler. Live and in person. At a very quiet collegiate café in Berkeley. From which we learn to not give barely post-mediaeval scientists or mathematicians stimulating beverages which they haven't had before. It makes them talk. And talk. And talk. Oh lord we're never going to get out of here! And we still have to go to the library! Coffee is a diuretic, it will make them pee, and the bathrooms on the third floor have been out of order since the exams, they'll panic!

On the whole, I enjoyed my years in Berkeley. It was an unusual environment.
One thing I do not miss is people talking about revolution, existentialism, and spirituality. Nowadays of course it's all about wheat products being evil and the root cause of all your problems unless the gluten is removed, and how it is possible with a hell of a lot of effort to make a non-allergenic totally inoffensive vegan pizza, possibly using quinoa.

It is, very fortunately, possible to live a completely comfortable life entirely without ever visiting Berkeley again. Which may surprise some people. You know, youngster, the bookstores there used to smell of pipe smoke, French fags, and Moe's cigars.

Sometime soon I'll have to search for the books on Naboloi Iggorot and other languages. They are somewhere in my room. Likely behind pipe-related stuff. Let us not dwell overmuch on mummification, a practise of theirs which takes several months. As a hobby it does not lead to fruitful conversation, and there are no fan conventions down at Moscone.

But it would be good if there were.

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Sunday, September 24, 2023


A friend posted about love being more important than religion, and what with not being fully awake, I misread the post entirely. It's a good thing Christians cannot read my thoughts. Or see them. Pitchforks. Suffice to say that the Folsom Street Fair is a visual feast for the entire family, and if you see your family priest there, check to see if he's dressed appropriately.
Or rather, what he's dressed appropriately for.

There's a medical office on my way to work which several times I thought offered 'Virgin Care'. This is San Francisco, and anything is possible. It's actually 'Urgent Care'.
My eyes tricked me.

[Virgin care is still a mighty interesting idea. Are they fragile? Do they require more or less watering and compost?]

As people get older, caffeine becomes more important. Don't rush out of the house in the morning before you're brain is up to speed. You can't possibly read any of the street signs accurately, and your physical coordination will be a bit wanky as well.
Questions and answers may be a bit off.

See virgins above.
Go ahead, have some more caffeine. It's good for the soul at this early hour. Especially at this early hour. Wakes up the brain. And absolutely full of antioxidants!

It will help you deal with the ugly dumb stuff out there.

On the street. With their poodles.

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Saturday, September 23, 2023


Not even when I'm giddy on caffeine will I describe myself as a romantic type. Roses leave me cold (stereotype flower), chocolates are good without any emothional connotations, and soft violin music merely irritates me. This, probably, explains why since my break-up over a decade ago I haven't connected with any members of the opposite gender. They're nice, and can be enjoyable to interact with, but I have neither been smitten, nor smote.

My best relationships, other than with the handsized she-sheep who assists Ms. Bruin in the administration of this househould (with a firm hoof when necessary, as the other creatures can be rambunctious), tend to be with intelligent sensible women who have interesting pools of knowledge and specialization. People who read. Who have pursued skills. A talmudisticly inclined academic, an illustrator who also makes mediaeval costumes, and a woman with an obsession for costume jewelry, about which she knows more than mortals are supposed to know. The deep knowledge. From the beginning of the universe when the brooch was first forged. You know, that brooch. The costume jewelry piece of immortality.

That last mentioned happens to be my apartment mate.
She also knows a lot about Joan Crawford.
The point is that beautiful sunsets like we've been having because there is smoke and particulate matter in the air from the Oregon wildires recently leave me cold. "Oh how beautiful", people will say, swooning, whereupon I head back inside for more of my hot beverage, or to pick up a pipe and stuff it for a quiet smoke away from couples getting all weepy and soft from the beauty of it all. So romantic! Those colours, that glow!

Then they'll have an intimate dinner in a charming little bistro with a vase of flowers on the table and a white tablecloth, after which he gets down on bended knee and offers her a ring. She blushes shyly, and bursts into tears. Melting! Melting! Other diners witnessing this get all glowy, it's so sweet, warm feelings! Meanwhile, some of us are sick to our stomachs. It's nauseating. You spoiled our meal, and now we can't get the waiters attention.
Sick romantic yuppie scum!

A recent dinner: 5 mg of Amlodipine Besylate. Coffee. 鹹蝦醬三絲炒米 (matchstick cut fatty meats, vegs, stinky shrimp sauce, and chilipaste, stirfried with rice thread noodle).
The apartment now has a faint whiff of South East Asian slum.
No rings. No roses. No sunset.

I would have shared it, but there was no romantically inclined college graduate present, keen to discuss a recent paper, or exciting discoveries in the field of igneous rocks.

We could have agreed that everything now smells of trees, plastic, wild grasses, and old tires in Southern Oregon. An old-timey fragrance. Twixt resin and petrochemicals.

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Friday, September 22, 2023


There are times when I wished I had spent more time trying to learn Shanghainese. Years ago I knew several people from Shanghai, and if I had studied their language assiduously it would have stood me in good stead. Understanding what the two elderly ladies said would have been far more "data rich" than just imagining a series of badly translated subtitles.

It started when one of them dozed off at her table after kvetching. When the other one at a nearby table noticed, she reached over with her walking stick and gave her a poke.


Imaginary dialogue: "Hey, are you asleep? Don't fall asleep!" "I wasn't sleeping, I was thinking about food" (Chinese people often think about food, the same way rednecks think about beer, pickup trucks, and the city of Denver). "Oh yeah, what kind of food?" "Hairy crab and pan-fried little buns." "Hmmph, it looked like you were out of it, a senile moment hah?" "What are you waffling about? It was hairy crabs, I tell you!" "You wouldn't know a hairy crab if it came up and bit you in the hoo-hah!"

Point is, I have no clue what either of them said. Indistinct hissing and grumbling. Sounding for all the world like bad-tempered soda water siphons. They could have been talking about hairy crabs. Shanghai is famous for those.

They both looked old enough to have been lively young things in slutty cheongsams dancing at a night club back in the fifties, when North Point was still a Shanghai in Hong Kong. They had probably been going to the same hair salon since coming to the States, likely brought over by relatives, by the time the dance halls, theatres, and boutiques established by exiles on the island were all closing and the community had melted into the surroundings. The hair salon is probably run by an old gentleman from Pudong, and caters primarily to other double transplants. There used to be several businesses run by Shanghainese in Chinatown.

There are no hairy crabs here. Nor Shanghainese nightclubs.

There were several more pokings with the stick.

And squawking or hissing comments.

Teatime was enjoyable.


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Thursday, September 21, 2023


There is a new sign at the front desk at my eye-doctor's office begging people to not abuse the staff there. Subtext: if you're going blind or not wearing your mask properly, it ain't our fault. Well, probably mostly the latter. Elderly Chinese people expect a certain amount of leeway because they've reached such an advanced age, and some grouchy old geezers do not understand that the mask isn't meant for mere chin support. Sir, just because you're slackjawed you don't need to keep a sling holding up your nearly non-existent chin or those folded wattles. Please keep the mask over every organ with which you breathe.
Yes, that includes your nose.

[Note: some old fossils are not as deserving of 'respect' as they think they are]

I may be imagining the dialogue here. For all I know somebody dropped their glass eye and panicked. Or couldn't see the clearly marked bathroom key and a disaster happened.
Every time I've been there the other clients were elderly. So who knows?

The good news is the eye pressure has lessened slightly (Latanoprost), and there is stability. So it's probable that when I finally kick the bucket I'll be able to look everyone full in the face at that time. Slightly more with the right eye. Not even a trace of glaucoma there.
Cataract surgery maybe in half a dozen years. Or maybe not.

Every time I see a medical person, I tend to reward myself. This morning that meant a pack of State Express ciggies from a store four blocks away, followed by breakfast at the chachanteng near the eye office.
Sliced pork liver congee, a yautiu, and milk tea. Enjoyed this while watching the local news on the telly. Too many motorbikes in the city centre of Kwangchow, a lovely alley ruined by garbage cans that smell horrific (problem "solved" by putting tall plastic barriers around the spot, with "lucky" slogans on them to distract folks and improve their mood), now we will interview the father of the child that was swept away in the flood, drowned and lost forever so sad, and the variety of mooncakes this season is staggering, as well as their prices good gracious what is this world coming to?

And coming up, we'll talk with a witness to a violent incident.
Name changed and face misted out. For reasons.

Programme sponsor: a herbal medicine company. Dan Shen (丹參 'daan sam') tea.
Dan Shen is something I used before my insurance kicked in.
It proved to be a life saver.

The teevee was meant to be background noise, but I had a good view of the screen and enjoyed the news immensely. I may have been the only person paying attention.

Pipe smoke afterwards while wandering about. One of the fish merchants on Stockton Street had 石狗公魚 ('sek gau kung yü'; sebasticas marmoratus, dusky stingfish or false kelpfish) for sale, which is a remarkably goofy looking thing. Ugly. It is delicious braise-steamed with ginger and scallion plus sherry or rice wine, or in a broth with tofu chunks. Whichever way, sliced fresh chilies may be added if you wish. And whole garlic cloves.

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Because my downstairs neighbor in the front apartment broke her hip several months ago, and is still walking problematically -- she's also older -- whenever I head across the hill to Chinatown to shop for groceries I usually bring her some vegetables. She's Hokkien Chinese from Jakarta, so I have a fairly good idea about what she used to eat. There are no vegetable shops nearby that carry that. Because Anglos don't eat squat; carrots, potatoes, lettuce. What the heck does one do with lettuce?

I mean, if you have a ranch dressing addiction, fine. Hidden Valley loves you.
You're severely twisted, and there are therapists lying in wait.
They know with what to bait the box.

Personally, I cannot understand why Anglos won't touch bitter melon, mustard cabbage, wai saan, wu tau, or many other things. Such as yard-long beans. Which are great stirfried with garlic, chilipaste, and shrimp sauce. Or in mild curries. Or with fish chunks. Or cooked with little bits of fatty pork and some fermented black bean paste. Very versatile!

I gave her some yesterday when I returned.

You could even cook them American style, like stringbeans.
You know, simmered till they're grey and limp.
[Black-coloured long beans]

If you are very white, you can also cook them with tofu chunks in a bland liquid, vegan stock or whatever, and they can take a great deal of abuse, so you probably can't cock it up.

All of the residents in my building except myself are Chinese ladies. I am the only man here at present. There aren't many tenants. It is, consequently, a peaceful place. The downstairs front apartment woman and I are the only ones who speak Indonesian.

Yard long beans are quite excellent cooked with Dutch or Indonesian style sweet soy sauce (ketjap manis) and sliced chilies, or simmered in coconut milk with a dash of Maggi and a handful of fried peanuts thrown on top when done.

Also: braised with several chunks of nice streaky fatty dried fish, garlic cloves, green onion lengths, sliced green chilies, plus turmeric and a dash of rice wine.

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Wednesday, September 20, 2023


Someone on one of the forums asked about enjoyable aromatic mixtures. Naturally I didn't respond, as what with being a severe and disapproving puritan regarding souped-up pipe tobaccos, I would have nothing but bile to spew and might get banned. The road to hell is paved with aromatics. As well as the soft spongy skulls of the perverts and redneck hicks who smoke them. Every extremist movement in the world, ever, had habitual smokers of aromatic pipe tobaccos among its ranks, often in key positions.

The Huns, Christianity, the Crusades, Flagelants, Witch-burning, Southern-Baptism, Vegans.
People who drink Starbucks syrup Frappuccinos grow up to smoke aromatics.
The Trump Whitehouse stank of Vanilla-Cherry Cavendish!

Mar-a-Lago? Mango rum and caramel.
Goes well with stolen documents.

Clean-minded people only smoke Virginia and Perique compounds, or nice Balkan blends. They have nothing to cover-up with stanky fruit flavours, there are no moldering corpses in their closets, and their bed sheets are changed regularly.
I'm just saying.

Of course if you wanted to cover up the fact that you killed your in-laws and sold their body parts, certain popular aros would do very well. And judging by the fact that there are so many people who say "oh I love the smell of that pipe tobacco (indicating the fruit-loop sog-shreds being huffed by a drooling degenerate over there in the corner), it reminds me of granddad", there are a huge number of Americans descended from brutal psychopaths.

Aromatics are the largest category of pipe tobacco smoked in undemocratic hellholes like Western Africa, New Delhi, Syria, Afghanistan, Moscow, and Mississippi.

It explains why so many people adore Erinmore Flake.
I have over a year supply of it, by the way.
For the occasionall filthy pleasure.

That reminds me. I should do laundry soon.

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This evening a young fellow of the Fratboy persuasion explained to me, sincerely and fervently, that I have a beautiful voice. Then he proceeded to do karaoke, as his turn had come up. The lyrics, insofar as I made any sense of them at all, were gibberish verging on bizarre romance, but mostly quite incomprehensible. This followed a rendition of Sweet Caroline, so it was an improvement of sorts, albeit no less nasty.

Kahn Souphanousinphone has nothing on fraternity members getting drunk in a Chinatown bar where karaoke brings in customers. Many of whom are Caucasian, and very very big.

I was born to slay giants.
I am mediaeval.

Several hours earlier I had noticed an old white haired woman at the bus stop on my street singing loudly. Also gibberant lyrics, quite insane. And not a good singer. There are too many crazy bad singers in this town. A couple of hours after that a loony on Grant (都板街) and Jackson (昃臣街/積臣街) was arguing with a street fire alarm call box.
He was white, but fortunately did not sing.

Not all the white people in San Francisco are defective.
But most of the defective people here are white.
When I left my apartment earlier to bear witness to singing, and observe the rats in Spofford Alley (新呂宋巷), the turkey vulture had asked whether the person I was meeting for drinkies had fatty inner thighs. And if so, could I bring back one? He was so hungry, he hadn't eaten all day (a blatant lie).

"Are you going to bail me out if I get arrested for doing something psychopathic?"

"Of course I will! Eventually I shall need a second thigh!"

Whereas karaoke is just a crime against humanity, harvesting body parts is immoral, and more than a little ethically dubious. And shouldn't be done, especially to old friends.
This is something I instinctively know.

I shan't mention the singing glandular freak frat boys to him.
He would probably recriminate me if he knew.
Surely no one would miss them.

He'd be right, but still 'no'.

There weren't any rats in Spofford Alley. Just a very well-fed looking feline.
The creature looked suspiciously satisfied with life.

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Tuesday, September 19, 2023


For many people who read the comics pages in the newspapers from the late eighties till the mid-nineties, Calvin is their hero, and they wish they had a friend like Hobbes, who frequently either co-conspires with Calvin, or physically attacks him when he returns from school. Because Hobbes, is, of course, a tiger. And tigers are known to eat little kiddies.

Hobbes is the most realistically portrayed character.
Particularly fond of tuna fish sandwiches.
Not too much mayo please.

In several ways I identify more with Hobbes than with Calvin. Mostly because he thinks that Susie Derkins is a "hottie". Which is absolutely the case.

She's adorable.

After all, who wouldn't like a brilliant girl next door who excels at schoolwork and clobbers pests? And she's a deft hand at hurling objects and water balloons.
It's the paradigm of perfect womanhood!

Hobbes has never mauled Suzie.
Which is understandable.
A true gentleman.

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A number of things displeased me recently. My mental state after putting up with screaming yutzes of the suburban senile fool variety may have been a contributing factor. Among many other reasons: moronic comments about California, The Jerusalem Post, sneering remarks about San Francisco, what the Republican Party is doing, some prominent political figure turning her name into a verb for vile behaviour at a crowded venue ("Lauren Boeberting": giving a Lauren Boebert), and Lynette claiming to be with the Medicare Department at 'Healthcare Benefits' calling me to be pushy about Medicare parts A and B.

And of course the entire state of Florida. Which is the Christian promised land.
Also, filled with Moms For Liberty.

Now, an additional factor is some bloody Persian engineering doctoral student in Arkansas where life is nasty, brutish, and filled with heart-clogging junkfood and the redneck inbreds that live upon such things trying to corner the market on Esoterica tobaccos, but that is neither here nor there.

So, for the benefit of everybody, here is a schematic of Donald Trump's brain.
Please notice that his Ivanka appears to be painfully swollen.
It's wedged among the adipose tissues.

A friend confessed recently that my rarely posted medical diagrams disquieted him, and he feels an inclination to skip those essays. This picture is not for him. But many people in the Maga part of the country would do well to dwell upon it, internalize it, and mount it in a little altar in their bedrooms for worship and offerings of incense.

To research Trump's brain, I had to read up on other political parts.
As one would.

So there may have been some overlap.

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Monday, September 18, 2023


Imagine that it's the end of a long day. And that you are taking the bus from Marin back to civilization. What you really want to do is light up a pipe and stroll through the industrial area for a while, relaxing, perhaps thinking about tea or a cocktail at the end of your walk. But you realize that as a petite miss it would look odd, and unfortunately you do not have a pipe.

Plus, this being California, children and little old ladies would be triggered.
And rear up full Karen, squawking in outrage.
Especially the white ones.

If I knew her, and thought it appropriate, I would offer her a pipe. Not a cocktail, because that would be suspicious -- especially given the disparity of our ages -- but I am sure that even in Marin, probably somewhere in Sausalito, there is a place where one can get a nice pot of tea and some biscuits. Which would be just the ticket. I'll have to look that up on the internet.

She has very nice hands. From my seat I can see them holding her cellphone and scrolling through her messages. When she's not talking to the woman next to her.

Yeah, no, not going to break the ice. I qualify as an older man, and it would consequently be way too skeevy. But I can imagine her holding a pipe while reading a book.
Perhaps enjoying a queer old-fashioned tobacco.
Do people still read books these days?

Earlier today I had been remembering Thomas Y., one of the last people in Marin to smoke Erinmore Flake. He was a survivor of internment at Stanley Fort during the war. He passed a few years ago. My coworker mentions that whenever she drives past his house, she can see that his garden is reverting to jungle, it used to be so lovely, and the Jaguar in the driveway is covered with dirt, dust, and leaves. The other smoker of Erinmore I saw regularly is probably gone also. He was crusty and could barely walk the last time I saw him.

That was mostly prompted by my first pipe at work this morning.
A Peterson 69, which is the favourite shape of one of my Facebook friends, who has several in different finishes, and has boldly admitted to smoking and enjoying Erinmore. Of which, by the way, there is an open tin near the chair where I am sitting presently. One of the familiar rectangular enamel tins from two decades ago. For the last several years it has only been available in European regulation round tins, with paper labels.

The best thing about working several days is that final bus ride back to civilization, after which I'm off for a long "weekend". Real food, and no snooty suburban dingos.
Plus books, and cups of Hong Kong Milk Tea.

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Sunday, September 17, 2023


Judging by the screams emanating from the room where the old fossils were huffing stogies and watching the game, the Forty Niners pulled off something stupendous in their contest against the other team (Southern California? South Carolina? Idaho?) today.
Either that or Geoffrey busted a haemorrhoid. I don't know.
Didn't watch.

Oh sure, I stuck my head in there periodically to remind them that if they needed to get past their swollen prostates, now is a good time, nobody is in there, but I didn't stick around.

Later on I explained to the Murt-man that I abolutely hate Marin.
Entitle, arrogant, oh so special people.

Gatvernondedju. Om te kotsen!

The reason why earlier I had expressed concern about their ability and chance to micturate is because I am a warm caring individual full of sympathy for the old farts and their physical wellbeing. As well as sweetness and light.

For a large part of the afternoon I puttered around out front, safely distant from the ruckus, smoking my pipe and swilling tea.
So whether the repulsive old toads in the back had a good time or not with their televised sporting displays was rather immaterial. I had a good time. I ended up quite buzzing on all the caffeine. There was stimulation all round.

And remarkable good cheer when it was all over.

So it's highly likely that Geoffrey busted a haemorrhoid.

Three bowls, three different pipes. Two tobaccos: the first being a queerish aromatic which is quite pleasant when dried to right degree, the third, enjoyed while the Forty Niners assaulted Geoffrey's hinter quarter purulence was a very pleasant flake tobacco with some strength and great complexity.

There are, apparently, reasons why the football is pointed.

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A meme I saw last night featured the face of some inbred syphilitc halfwit from Montana or Wyoming looking anticipatorily happy above the text: "when you see someone get out of a car with California plates and walk toward a buffalo..."

Okay, Jebediah, that's very funny.

You DO know that here in California we also have the internet, right? So we know what happens when you do that. Perhaps the originator of that meme isn' aware that California has the internet? As I understand it, they're kind stupid and iggerunt in some parts of the country.

BTW: you look like you should be drying out somewhere. Is that normal where you are?

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Saturday, September 16, 2023


For my own mental equilibrium I tend to ignore the old fossils huffing stogies in the back. Not because of their horrid smells -- good lord, after the first hour or so at that place, I cannot smell worth diddly -- but because of the pre-World War One "ideas" that regularly filter through their drooly breathing orifices. They vocalize stridently, endless, repetitively.

They beat personal pronouns to death. They beat Kyle Rittenhouse and the freedom to shoot black people and liberals to death. They beat the pull-out from Afghanistan to death.
They beat Marjorie Taylor Green is a genius! to death.
And very much more.

Everything, you must understand, is Joe Biden's fault.

Oh, if only we still had Donald Trump!

He would save us!

As you would guess, I normally think that they took leave of their senses back when Reagan was still in charge. Even the retired member of the judicial branch, whom one might expect to have nuance and a grasp of complex concepts. As well as at least half a brain. But since he married the hard-core Vietnamese woman and retired, his brain has gone all slack.

[To refresh your memory of Viet-Am reactionaries, this 'zesty song'.]

Which is odd, because I find that women keep me on my toes. Of course, it does depend upon the women. I tend to hang out with intelligent women who often admit that they don't know all there is to know about certain things, aren't right about everything, and will ask intelligent questions when necessary. Like the men with whom I'd prefer to I hang out.
However. Work is an entirely different cup of tea.

Riffing off Raoul Duke in Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas: we're right in the middle of a reptile zoo, and somebody is giving stimulants to these darned things.
They'll probably tear us to shreds soon.

I know from bitter experience that you don't give cigars to babies or bananas to old men. That's the cursed of both worlds.

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Friday, September 15, 2023


For several reasons humans are the dominant sentient creatures on this planet. What if we had evolved slower? Would there be other species that we would have to share primacy with? Perhaps fellow tool-users? And some species not so communal? Imagine if our greatest writers and philosophers were, for instance, whales and ferrets.

What if the aliens are avoiding us because, as their wriggly, wriggly officers and scientists explain, our garbage is just not interesting enough. And we obviously never developed the ability to co-exist with other creatures.

Best wait another few million years before contact.
See if anything better turns up there.
A cross-species festival of psychedelics and heavy machine use.
Competitive. But highly social. There is food.

Fruit, carrion, and insects.

Space aliens probably watch our television broadcasts and think that we're dreadfully boring. Why didn't we ever create a long running series about the social aspects of trash disposal? Some of their races can sit and watch that on the telly for hours, and it's so fascinating! Humans seem to be obsessed with deodorant and handbags.
How uninspired.

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Thursday, September 14, 2023


Mordechai posted: "My fridge has regular milk, oat milk, and goat milk. I’m so fancy."
And he clarified that there was no soy milk.
To which I reacted.

Facebook then informed me that this comment might conceivably be considered racist: "Regular milk, sweetened condensed milk for the other person, and congealed milk as well as milk fat (for both residents). The other person (Chinese American) tried soy milk once, then informed me that white people were crazy and threw it out."

It's an honest opinion. I have often thought that many white people were out of their goofy little subpar minds. As events in the last decade plus have abundantly shown.

To be frank, I'm getting a little tired of Facebook's puritanical slant. It's very damned white of them. Moralizing mush-mouth-standards-enforcing creeps. They probably eat gluten-free ethically sourced green pizza all the time and only play non-violent video games.
Mark Zuckerberg can blow it out of his stinking sanctimonious ear.
There is no artificial intelligence there.
It's all-organic stupidity.


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Out of the house before eight o'clock, reached my cardiologist's office at the clinic near the Panhandle at eight twenty. Indulged in a quick smoke before going in, twiddled my thumbs for a minute or so to let the reek of demon tobacco recede, then went in and discovered that there was no one there. Reason being that they don't open till nine. I was an hour early for my nine thirty appointment, but I had been gambling on them dealing with me right away (sometimes it happens) and dismissing me before I was even supposed to be there.

[Actually, I had vastly over-estimated how long it would take to get there.]

Of course what I had forgotten was that most of his patients are old wrecks who have nothing better to do since they retired than get up at the crack of dawn to be on time for their medical stuff. So there were actually two people ahead of me: 俞生 (Mr. Yu) and 龍女士 (Madam Lung), the latter accompanied by her daughter.

Obviously, more thumb twiddling. Thumbs getting a work out.
Circulation in my digits is fine. Legs, not so much.
So the treadmill test was a bitch.
Excuse my language.

Still. Done, out on the street and enjoying a post-medical appointment smoke shortly after ten, back in downtown having a light lunch before twelve. Finished a pipe at one thirty.

The two most beautiful phrases in the English language must be what the Interventional Cardiologist said last year "there's no ulceration, good!" Which meant that the peripheral angioplasty on the lower extremities could be postponed, probably indefinitely.
And what my chief cardiologist said this morning: "you're normal."

Yeah, I know he wasn't talking about my head in any way. Either statement would be a great title for an autobiography, and I might choose them as epitaphs one day. Just to reassure my nearest-and-dearest that, indeed, I had been a regular man.

You're normal. And there is no ulceration!

Did you hear that, gentlepersons? Normal!

Naturally I did not mention to my cardiologist an idea I came up with while in transit. Probably the most dangerous snack in the world if it ever gets made. Spicy salted egg yolk flavoured bacon strips. All the artery clogging cholesterol and salty umami that you want.


See, this is why companies don't allow me anywhere near product development or marketing. I'd kill the world with my genius.

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Upon waking I tried to clear my head of all the crap that had accumulated there while I slept. Not actual 'events', but memories of what I heard about them, as well as happy songs about ghastly things. The edge of sleep in the morning is a strange place. That first cup of coffee and opening up my browser usually sets me right.

In part the issue is the prescriptions I'm taking. In part it's simply that the world is a very weird place. Largely because of people. The internet comment that rocks is "we probably all need therapy at some point and so does this person but they need it more than most."
Which I discovered on someone else's page and promptly stole.

[By the way, seeing my cardiologist early in the morning today, and doing the stress test. We'll discuss those medications along with pipe tobacco, cigars, or coffee. Then maybe an early lunch with all of it afterwards. So there's that.]

It's a man, a method, a way of life.

It's all about happy discoveries.
Bugs too, but mostly the discoveries.

One of the things I found recently was "kulit salmon berisi telur masin" (salmon skin with salted egg yolk). Wasn't till I got home that I realized 'hey, no Chinese text!' Which would be 鹹蛋黃味三文魚皮 ('haam daan wong mei saam man yu pei'). Seeing as the store where I got it is in Chinatown, it may be a bit slow moving without the clear text saying what it is.

I am perfectly okay with most people shying away from it.


After sampling it I felt like saying "OMG, OMG, OMG" on infinite loop like a teenager. It's very good. Delicious. Highly recommended. Probably increases the incidence of gout, heart attacks, and irritation from your idiot relatives, to a near certainty.
But it might make that worthwhile.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2023


Okay, we're cool with the Italians and Germans. At least they're open minded and up for a good time when visiting the city. So, mostly, are many other Euries -- though the Dutch (my people) at times are snootily superior and get under my skin, and the French are quick to blame communication issues on our not speaking a more intelligible language because they overestimated their own abilities to communicate effectively -- but at present there are tonnes of ragamuffin tattooed trailer freaks from elsewhere in the country slowly ambling about ten abreast on crowded streets enacting a feeding frenzy called Dreamforce. Which is its own ecosystem, spiritual life-changing event, and pop-culture mating dance.

Generally speaking I do not like tourists in SF. Many of them haven't done their homework.
But I admit that if it weren't for them all that fried rice and all those eggrolls would never get eaten, and someone has to buy the sweatshirts and tees with witty slogans.
Which are the very foundation of our economy here.

My own teeshirts (underworn) are mostly related to the computer industry, a saddly defunct toy company, and cigar and pipe brands.

And you will be glad to know I do not wear them with shorts.
In fact, I never wear shorts. At all.
All over the country there are short-wearing pipesmokers with nasty burns on their thighs from spilling hot beverages, or embers falling from their pipes because they unwisely loaded their briar to the brim, not taking into account the natural expansion and curling up of tobacco when lit. It's a real health crisis! Both of these occurences are often linked, one following the other. The ember touching pasty white flesh startles the pipe man and makes him jump or twitch, whereupon tea is spilled. OR the hot tea gets spilled and in consequence he drops his freshly lit pipe right onto his clenched thighs, thus scorching his tender parts.
I grow sad just thinking about it.

It's worse if the pipesmoker is a woman. Skirts.

That's why you seldom see a properly dressed lady smoking a pipe.

So I have three bits of advice here.

1): Never wear shorts, they're dangerous. Besides not being a good look.
2): Don't load up to the brim of your pipe, leave some clearance.
3): Wait for your tea to cool before lifting the cup.

Skirts, however, I encourage. It's a problem. A sweet young woman wearing a skirt just looks so nice with a good pipe (Dunhill group 3, possibly 4, or maybe a Barling), especially if she's enjoying a fine Virginia flake or Virginia-Perique blend. Rattray's Old Gowrie or Marlin Flake, Elizabethan Mixture (now under the Peterson label, formerly Dunhill), or pretty much the entire Fog City Collection by Greg Pease. Also several Cornell & Diehl products.
Highly recommended.

On the other hand, if you're planning to eat Italian pasta dishes, fresh crabs, or curry, then shorts are in fact a good idea. Because of spillage and clothing stains. Perhaps best to eat those in private with only a bib and Speedos.

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The doctor's appointment went very well. All the tests came back good. So the issues seem to have been resolved, and I'm sort of com...