Leper Messiah

Giving the world a hand since February 3rd, 2002. "If you're gonna dine with them cannibals, sooner or later, darling, you're gonna get eaten."

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Saturday, May 25, 2002
A matter of perspective...

Has anyone else noticed the shift in news priorities over the past week or so? For the past two or three months, all we've heard were the major news outlets crowing "Israel bad, Palestinians good" or "Palestinians bad, Israelis good". Suddenly, The middle east has been relegated to "page two". Isn't it interesting how the fact that Pakistan and India are possibly on the brink of a genuine honest-to-God thermonuclear war makes the whole Israeli/Palestinian thing seem kinds....well....silly? Not to minimize the suffering of both peoples, but compared to the potential for 3-4 million deaths in the subcontinent and hundred of thousands of future deaths due to collapsed infrastructure & increased incidents of cancer in both countries as well as any downwind areas, a 16-year old suicide bomber seems like the bush leagues.

As an aside, amid all of the clatter of vague terrorist threats & potential nuclear war, the Dubya administration is rethinking whether they want to deal with Arafat in the future. Has Arafat finally dug himself into a hole that even all of the Israeli incursions couldn't get him out of?

Interesting, huh?

Friday, May 24, 2002

Washington, D.C. (SatireWire.com) — While praising the Bush administration for its sudden willingness to share information on terror warnings, critics today suggested the White House had volunteered too much after Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told a Senate panel the danger was so great that he had soiled himself.

[...]"I have the greatest respect for Don Rumsfeld, and the greatest concern for the threat we all face, but the penultimate head of the armed forces cannot go around telling people he's no longer in control of his bowels," said Sen. Pete Domenici, R-NM.

(via SatireWire)

My thoughts on "Star Wars: Episode II, Attack of the Clones":

First of all, one must realize that one doesn't go to see a Star Wars movie for the witty dialogue. If you can keep that in mind, you can enjoy the movie. That said, I thought the "romantic" scene between Anakin & Padme in front of the fireplace was one of the worst-scripted scenes I've seen in a long time. George Lucas can't write romance. Period. The movie starts with the characters speaking the standard sci-fi technobabble,and then for the romantic scene it shifts into a sixth-grade primer on writing romance novels. Huh? Even given the fact that this takes place "...long ago in a galaxy far, far away...", who really talks like this, especially to one with whom they are in love? In defense of Lucas, I will say that the romance wasn't overstated & didn't overwhelm the rest of the plot, so for that he gets an "attaboy" to go along with his kick in the pants for writing it in the first place. Also in this same vein, the comic-relief of C3PO felt forced & un-funny. By the end of the movie, I simply wanted him dead (after Jar-Jar, of course).

Second, one must realize why one does go to see a Star Wars movie: action & special effects. In this department, I was more than happy. Seeing a wave of Jedi plowing through a horde of droid soldiers made my heart go pitter-patter with joy. Also, seeing Yoda kick some ass was a delight as well.

Leper & Messiah give it two "thumbs up". All in all, a fine escapist action movie. Just don't sit & think about what is going on while watching it. Enjoy it for what it is--brain candy.

Well, another birthday has come & gone......all in all, yesterday was a good day. My good friend Perry left work early, so we got to play 9 holes of frisbee golf, eat a Pizza Hut "Insider" pizza (yummy!) & watch "Star Wars: Episode One" on DVD, and then went to see "Attack of the Clones" in the theater (more about that later). This year was so much better than last year!

Here's the scoop on last year: I was actually supposed to have two separate celebrations (hey, how many times does one turn 30?), one with my then-gf on my actual b-day, and another larger gathering of friends on the Sat after my b-day.

Actual b-day: I dressed in a suit, was picked up with my then-gf in a stretch limo, & was heartily encouraged to drink the vast majority of a $150 bottle of Dom Perignon champagne on an empty stomach. We were then both dropped off at the expensive restaurant but, being waaaay too drunk to eat, I simply tried not to pass out or throw up the very expensive champagne. Afterwards, we were picked up at the restaurant & dropped off at my place, where I promptly passed out. Fun, eh? Not even any "birthday sex". *sigh*

Saturday gathering: the whole event was planned by my then-friend Tess. She was simply making a reservation for 12 or so at my favorite restaurant (Atlas World Grill in Iowa City, IA--fantastic!), no big problem, right? Well, I showed up with my friend Bill, & was met by my then-gf & our mutual friend Linda at the bar. Turns out that the reservations (& party) had been canceled--and no one bothered to tell me. Tess put the kibosh on the party because she didn't agree with something I was doing (my then-gf wasn't completely divorced at the time). Myself, my then-gf, Bill, & the owners of Atlas (James is a friend & his business partner is a pretty good guy, too) went on to have a great time on our own, but the anger at Tess for pulling such a stunt still makes my blood boil a year later. All she had to do was to say "hey, I'm not comfortable doing this, can you find someone else?" like an adult. Instead, she made it personal. The last time I talked to her she showed no signs of remorse, in fact copping an attitude with me. I'm sad about losing a friend, but that kind of friend I don't need...

Now do you understand why I said today was a good day?

Thursday, May 23, 2002
Not only do I have a bad case of insomnia, but I also have a song stuck in my head from a musical I was forced to perform in back in fourth grade. Fourth grade!

Why couldn't that paticular track in my brain have been used for something more useful, like SQL commands? Or trig functions? Hell, even cooking skills would be better.....

Oh, yeah, it's also my birthday. Yay.

Sunday, May 19, 2002
Back to politics for a bit.

Is it just me, or do I see a pattern here? Check out these headlines:
Cheney: More Attacks 'Almost a Certainty'

U.S. Detects 'Enhanced' Threat of a New

More terrorist attacks on US likely, says Defence Secretary

Rice opposes public panel to investigate 9/11

White House accuses Sen. Clinton of fueling political divisions

An Eye on the Ballot Box in Terror's Aftermath

One Cheer for Politics as Usual

I see a concerted, condescending effort on the part of the Dubya White House to minimize the damage of bad press, in effect ruffling the hair of the public like some small child & telling them "Why don't you go watch your Star Wars or go outside & play or something. We adults need to take care of important business". I didn't like this when I was a kid, and I sure as hell don't like it now.

I also see an effort to distract the public from the fact that someone in the administration may have screwed up. "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain," Ari Fleischer seems to be saying, "to question our Great Leader™ now would be devicive & counterproductive, so don't do it. He knows what's best for you." Grrr.

Talking Points Memo states it more clearly than I ever could, but that's his bread & butter, so check him out as well.

Tom Waits Lyric o' the day:
So come on in
It ain't no sin
Take off your skin
And dance around in your bones
"The Black Rider" from the album "The Black Rider"

I'm watching Cartoon Network right now (thanks to insomnia). "The Herculoids" just finished, and now it's "Birdman".

"Herculoids": as far as I can tell, the mother (Tara) is totally worthless, except for those few times when she gathers up the animal posse to bail out the menfolk when they get captured. All she usually does is worry about her husband & son while she stays back at the homestead guarded by one of their creatures. I never really noticed how misogynistic this cartoon was. I wonder if this is consistent with all late-60's cartoons?

"Birdman": ok, so if the criminals know that Birdman gets his power from the sun, why do they continue to commit crimes during the day?