Coverage of me and other train wrecks: my mama, subway nut jobs, sex and the environment.


NNNOOOO, Canada!

Remember the post about the dead waterfowl in a Canadian lake? Well, there's more to Canada's waterways than meets the bird's eye.

Canada's laws allow for lakes and rivers to be reclassified as waste dumps for use by mining companies. Yeah. How ridiculous is that? This way, the bodies of water, no longer offically called "lakes" or "ponds" or "rivers," are exempt from pollution regulations. It's like, if I change your name from "Phillip" to "BoyCow" that means I can castrate you and barbeque your assmeat. Sounds crazy right?

Basically, a mining company can knock on the government's door "That shouldn't be a fish-filled pond. No way. That should be downright a pond-o-carcinogens, that's what I say." And the government will respond "Oh boy, a pond of cancer-goo. We shoulda thoughta that before. Please, take it. We got too much clean water here in Canadaland and folks're becomin' jealous." Come on, Canadians. Fight for this. The contaminants will NEVER stay in one place. You know better. They'll leach into your groundwater and into your waterways and your cancer rates will skyrocket. Make me proud, Canada.

Read the article here and have a box of tissues handy.

Source: CBS News Canada


Too Much Drinking in Denver

Just returned from a work trip. Drank too much, too many nights, after 15-hour days working. Oh, Denver. Listen to the Porter and temper your consumption!

What three things does drink especially provoke?

Marry, sir, nose-painting, sleep, and
urine. Lechery, sir, it provokes, and unprovokes;
it provokes the desire, but it takes
away the performance: therefore, much drink
may be said to be an equivocator with lechery:
it makes him, and it mars him; it sets
him on, and it takes him off; it persuades him,
and disheartens him; makes him stand to, and
not stand to; in conclusion, equivocates him
in a sleep, and, giving him the lie, leaves him.

Only Child Syndrome Symptoms

Number 1: Love and Attention
It's impossible for me to tell if someone likes me unless they pay me lots of genuine attention. But it has to be real. Not the fakey crap you get with daily chit-chat. Not, "how's the weather" kind of conversation, but true focus and care. Of course, not getting that attention immediately makes me question my worth, at least until I reason my way out of the psychotic downward spiral of my self-esteem, which is often accompanied by an equally psychotic determination to hate everybody.

Number 2: Misanthropy
It's easier to turn from people, to be solitary, than it is to socialize. Now, we all need a combination of socializing and solitude, all I'm saying is that singletons turn towards solitude more often than most. It's our healing place, the place from which we examine our interactions and sort out our feelings and opinions. People often times are surprised to see us at parties telling jokes and having fun; generally we're seen as antisocial. Sometimes we are. Sometimes we hate you. But not just you; we hate everybody.

WARNING: If you're an only child and reading this, you probably think--oh that's so true, we're so alone and different. Look, we may experience particular social anxieties more acutely than others, but our thoughts and feelings (no matter how INTENSE) aren't unique to us. Everyone has a hard time working in groups, socializing, sharing, cooperating. I'm sorry to burst your victimbubble, but you're not an alien. You're not unique. You're just as human as the people with siblings. If you get out and tell people your feelings about your social awkwardness, you'll start to realize that. By all means, enjoy solitude, but realize that it's by socializing that you learn most about what makes you human. And it's by practicing social skills that the intensity of group settings becomes lessened. Also, drinking and drugs help. Just kidding. Sort of.

Over and out.


Michael Pollan Gives Us Hope

Here's a wonderful piece by Michael Pollan in the Guardian. Pollan addresses the dismay many of us face in dealing with climate change my making adjustments to our personal lives, a feeling he encapsulates in the question: Why bother?

After citing farmer/writer Wendell Berry, Pollan offers one of the most concise assessments of our collective, American passivity in the face of man-made climate change:

For us to wait for legislation or technology to solve the problem of how we're living our lives suggests we're not really serious about changing - something our politicians cannot fail to notice. They will not move until we do. Indeed, to look to leaders and experts, to laws and money and grand schemes, to save us from our predicament represents precisely the sort of thinking - passive, delegated, dependent for solutions on specialists - that helped get us into this mess in the first place. It's hard to believe that the same sort of thinking could now get us out of it.

It's an inspired article, but then I expect nothing less from someone as articulate about his passions as Michael Pollan.


You know America is number 1 when...

...a middle-aged man who has just been knocked flat by a bike messenger in New York City's garment district pulls his bloodied glasses off his face and pleads to the onlookers with cellphones "No no no, I'm fine, please don't call an ambulance. I don't got health insurance. Please. I'll get up."

And got up he did. Now that's patriotism.

In the face of a possible concussion this man didn't let the blood run down his face, whining for help. No. He did what every American without health insurance SHOULD do: He reached for the pipes on some scaffolding and pulled himself up. Get up, America. Stop complaining about your restless leg syndromes and your diabetes and get the fuck up and go to work. I for one know that I would hire that bloody-headed man in a snap. He's a loyal citizen and I bet he's a loyal worker. I bet he didn't even think of taking advantage of my tax dollars by dragging himself to a free clinic. Uh uh. That man went right back to his job, wiped his head with some towels and kept on with his day.

People like him are the heroes who make America number 1.

You know you're in a recession when...

...California plans to cut $4 billion to public schools at the start of their new fiscal year this July. Many states will experience tremendous cuts to public services this summer as old budgets are replaced by recession budgets. Here's the article from the NY Times. Whatever, though. If you can't afford private education, you should stick to manual labor. Americans don't need to be readers and thinkers; we need to be doers. Work Hard and Stop Thinking!


You know you're in a recession when... broad daylight, at the corner of a busy intersection, near Union Square park, a man stands outside a display window of your favorite comic book store (Forbidden Planet), pulls down his pants and takes a dump. Yup. Full-on 2-girls-one-cup pile o'caca outside the store as dozens of New Yorkers whizzed by for their evening commute.

It's been a while since New York City has let out its wild side. Many may cringe, but piles of caca, puddles of vomit, and streams of fresh piss were common in the city before Mayor Giuliani, and I've mixed feelings about the return of public defecation. It's gross, but it's what I loved about the city when I first got here. And many of my friends felt the same way too. That is, you never knew what you were going to see. Sure, I'm glad I don't have to hurdle past man-dung, but the forces that eased my walks also neutralized the city's character.

For the last 10 years, the city has been stripped of its spontaneity: name-brand stores, all carrying the same name-brand products, the same trees, the same style of sky scraper, and lots of similarly-clad folks all trying to fit in. Industrialization at its apogee. The New York I fell in love with, however, was full of people who didn't give a fuck about fitting in: public poopers, public sucker-fuckers, home-cooked fashionistas and the occassional nudist. It seems the tide is turning and the faint scent of pubes and poop is in the air. Be still, my heart.

Hooray recession! Bring it on, Bush! I just hope our President gets the chance to pull us deeper into the muck before his term is over. Them maybe I'll really love New York City again.