Wednesday, August 31, 2011

It IS a small World!

For reasons passing understanding, today this blog got hits from Finland, Iraq and Mongolia!

This is unusual, but totally cool, even if those poor bastards ended up here only by virtue of some cruel Google joke.

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Stop Informing Us!

Dear The Media,

Please stop giving us information about Kim Kardashian. We do not care.

We try to be responsible consumers of news. We also think it is important to keep up with the pop cultural zeitgeist, however you have finally broken our will. Please stop keeping us updated on Kim Kardashian or anyone who is connected to and/or “famous” because of her.

Not since the great Paris Hilton Edict of 2007 have we asked you for anything like this, so please respect our wished and just make her go away.

Respectfully,
The Editors at Standard Kink

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Scarlett Johansson Loves Me.

On the other hand .... just in case there was any question and since it has not been mentioned in awhile: Scarlett Johansson loves me.



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What is Hurtful.

What is Hurtful
by james bezerra

It is an opinion unsustainable
that being a homosexual
is somehow sinful
or harmful
or shameful.
But what is unacceptable
and truly awful
and hurtful
is a political
movement so full
of demagoguery
and hypocrisy
that it cries “blasphemy”
at all those it deems to be
simply unworthy
of the right to marry.
Quite clearly
that’s a position undeniably,
and completely,
full
of shit.

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Adventure-bound.




This weekend I get to go visit some of my family in Sacramento and we are going to go white water rafting! How much fun does that sound like? Jealous much?

I have been rafting once before – though it was a long time ago – and I remember that there is really only one thing you have to remember: don’t fall out of the boat.

Well, as someone who has made a life out of falling out of boats (both real and metaphorical) I am looking forward to what will most certainly be an adventure.

This also allows me to do one of the other things I like most to do in the world, namely, fly with just a carry-on. I do not know why this makes me tingle with joy, but it always. I guess it makes me feel like a ninja! Other terribly mundane things that I love and which make me tingle: checking into hotels, looking at jackets in thrift stores, ordering room service, running my hands along the spines of books in used book stores.

Anyway, I am looking forward to a fun weekend. In eager anticipation I have composed the poem below:

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It’s Totally Exotic!

It’s Totally Exotic!
by james bezerra

Soon I will take a flight;
to a mystical land I will go,
an exotic place called Sacramento!

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Cheese Dragon.



Cheese Dragon
by james bezerra

It was around Noon
that time I fought a cheese dragon
in the jungles near Rangoon.
He attacked our cargo wagon
which was filled with a whole lot’a
tomatoes, dough and salami.
But being composed entirely
of fresh gorgonzola,
the cheese dragon soon got all melty.
We used his softened body
to make our village a giant pizza!

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Bipolar Explorer.

Bipolar Explorer
by james bezerra

Could a bipolar disorder
possibly compel one
to be a polar explorer?
Because none
of us who really are
well-adjusted would
trek to a place that could
freeze us where we stand.
But others seem to demand
more excitement than is reasonable
and I suspect that is attributable
to some nervous condition
for which there is surely now a medication.
However I wonder if, in curtailing
that restless inclination,
we would be preventing
new forms of exploration.

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Texas Cartoon.


Texas Cartoon
by james bezerra

Is it ridiculous
or just egregious
that Texas wants us
to elect another governor who
is a cartoonish yahoo?

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Grand Canyoneering.




Two weeks from now I will be camping in the Grand Canyon! I am very excited about this because a few short months ago I had never even been outside! If, in September of 2010 you had told me that in September of 2011 I would be hiking down into a giant hole in the ground and then sleeping there in a hammock for several days, I would have asked what the hell sort of medication you had recently stopped taking. However life is a funny thing and always interesting and I do enjoy that fact.

I have spent a lot of time and energy (too much actually) obsessing over what I am taking in with me and how much it all weighs (I will be carrying it all on my back after all) and I have been having quite a fun time being fanatical about it. I will tell you all about it later (probably next week when my preparations will kick into truly obsessive compulsive territory in the final run up to actually leaving), but for the moment here are a few of the more bizarre things I have convinced myself that I need to learn more about/worry about:

How to tie knots (for hammock-hanging and general usefulness).

How to wrap a scarf into a turban (yeah, that’s right).

Finding a hat that is both desert-functional and also stylishly fabulous!

Israeli military guidelines for water-consumption while active in a desert environment (I’m told they have it all figured out).

The geography/geology of the Grand Canyon and Colorado River.

Lightweight sandals.

Whether or not I am in good-enough shape to dive off of a waterfall while shirtless.

Whether or not to pack potentially explosive items in a special bag (even if it screws up my other organizational strategies).

Whether to take extra clothes or simply be filthy for several days (right now I’m leaning toward filthy).

When to stop shaving so that by the time we are taking pictures in the desert I will have the beginnings of a nice Navy-SEAL-in-Afghanistan beard going on! (Every man wants to have pictures of himself looking this way, it is simply an eternal truth.

This is half the reason we invented “going to war” in the first place*.)

Is there any way that I can somehow use this trip as an excuse to purchase an ice ax?

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* It is worth mentioning that I am not one of those people who considers hiking a well-established trail to be Rambo-making or anything. Please accept the “Navy SEAL” and “going to war” references as hyperbolic humor and not and in any way reflective of my sense of bad-ass-ed-ness. After all, I’m considering buying a paperback copy of “The Wasteland” to take with me, proving that even while communing with nature I am still more of a pretentious douche than I am an outdoorsman.

Wheelbarrow Haiku.



Wheelbarrow Haiku
by james bezerra

If your heart were a
wheelbarrow, what would you
move around in it?

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Friday, August 26, 2011

Parallel Universe Blood Bank.



Do you think that there is a parallel universe out there where the only thing different is that in the parallel universe blood banks and actual banks are the same place? And they store all of the blood in safe deposit boxes or something? Long metal boxes just filled to spilling with human blood? And instead of a PIN number you have to prick your finger on a biometric needle? And how do I know that they’ve been keeping that needle clean? And when you go in to apply for a loan or whatever, the lobby is always filled with slightly tired people eating Twinkies and watching TV because they just gave blood. And when you get money from the ATM it always comes out a little blood stained because the guy right before you just deposited a bunch of blood into the same slot. That would be weird, right?

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Awkward Porn Revelation.


I very seldom write anything specific about my work, and I am not going to start now … but we just sent out this big email blast about some new programs we’re offering and in the email are some pretty standard “happy business people” stock photos. Well, I swear to god that one of the women in one of the photos does porn.

I’m not kidding! And this isn’t like I’m having a nervous breakdown or anything and seeing porn stars everywhere! And I don’t even watch that much porn or anything … but I would swear on a holy bible that I have seen one of the women in a pornographic film.

You have to ask yourself, what are the odds? But if you think about it, it isn’t that unlikely. The woman is young and cute and has short blonde hair. And is more model-pretty than porn-star-ish anyway. So maybe she moved out to LA, got a gig as a model, moved from stock photo modeling to “sexy” modeling and then to “naked” modeling and then into pornography. Is that career path so hard to believe? I don’t think so. I earned my degree at CSU Northridge and I am certain that I went to school with a couple of women who were in the adult industry (the San Fernando Valley is to porn what the Midwest is to grain, after all). So I don’t even think that the possibility is that slim.

Obviously there is no way for me to confirm any of this though. I mean, I can’t go to my boss and be all like, “Hey … um … where do we buy our stock photos? Because I think I recognize one of the women from some pornography I have seen ...”




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Parallel Universe Fruit.


Do you think that there is a parallel universe out there where the only thing different is that in the parallel universe it is customary to put tiny hats on all of our fruit? So – like – when you go to the grocery store all of the oranges are wearing little (but proportional) top hats? And all the apples have on cowboy hats? And every single grape has a tiny fedora stuck to it? And at home in your junk drawer, along with rubber bands and dead batteries and electrical tape, you have a couple extra old fruit hats, just in case you loose one of the hats on the way home from the grocery store? And what if that was just the way that the world was? Would there be an entire industry devoted to the manufacture of small hats for fruit? And – like – once upon a time the fruit hats were really nice and actually made of felt and stuff, but now-a-days they’re all cheap and mass produced? Since consumerist culture cares less about quality? Anyway, That would be weird, right?

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The Playboy Club.




You know what could be a really good and interesting show? This Playboy Club show that will be on TV this season.

You know what is certainly not going to be a really good and interesting show? This Playboy Club show that will be on TV this season.

I will put money on it. I read an article about it the other day and it would seem that the people behind the show are trying to play up the Third Wave Feminism idea that by using their sexuality, these women are somehow taking ownership of their lives and embracing themselves! Yay! Rainbows! Unicorns!

But I think that in reality that is probably just something that was said by one man - who was trying to sell a TV show - to another man - who happened to be trying to buy a TV show. And I think they probably left out the part about Third Wave Feminism. I think the conversation went like this:

SELLER: Like Mad Men, but set in The Playboy Club.

BUYER: I like it. Will women have a problem with it?

SELLER: I hadn’t thought about that … No. We will make it about how being a half-naked waitress is empowering.

BUYER: I like it.

My problem with the show isn’t that is going to be cheesy – though it certainly will be - my problem is that they’re probably going to completely do wrong the one thing that Mad Men has always does right, which is: embrace the attitudes and inequalities of the times. I mean, on Mad Men they didn’t want Kennedy to beat Nixon! Can you imagine? Pregnant women smoke! Don Draper is an asshole! Men drink at work! Women get paid less for the same job! Not that they can get the same job, because – you know – they’re dames!

But I fully expect The Playboy Club to skip all of that and act as though the weird, off-kilter reality-bubble/oxygen lung in which Hugh Hefner chooses to live is somehow real and okay. When Mister Hefner was 20 or 30 or maybe even 40 … sure, you can live that way if you want. It is a life-choice and yours to make sir, but at a certain point don’t you just become the thing that you were making fun of in the first place? Lame, uncool, powerstructure, old, white men? You know what Hugh Hefner should have done? Grown old gracefully. That’s what a man would do. I’m not saying that I don’t get it I would love to have Playboy playmates hanging around my house, however, at a certain point, when they could be my grandchildren or my great-grandchildren, I like to think I would say, “I just feel icky right now.” But more power too you Hef! Whatever.

Anyway, we have digressed.

The point is, The Hef has welded together a not-real philosophy of love-and-acceptance out of leftover 1960s-peace-love spare parts, thrown in a touch of 1970s decadence and he has used it to justify regular, run-of-the-mill creepy-old-man-ness. And I think The Playboy Club will end up being the same sort of Frankenstein hodge-podge of self-defeating earnestness. And also – I’m just guessing – it will also be pretty poorly written.

All that being said, I will totally watch the first episode. Just to be fair. And because I like looking at half-naked waitresses (Did I just invalidate my own argument? Shit.).

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Re-In Love with Life.

From time to time I re-fall in love with life. I just had one of those profound moments of reflection.

Alfred Hitchcock said, “Drama is life with the dull parts taken out.”

Well I agree that 70 – 80% of life is tedium and monotony, but that other 30 – 20% is pure wonderfulness.

I realized that I have been to New York and Boston. I have been to London and St. Louis, Paris, Orlando, and I have eaten fried chicken in Philadelphia with my grandmother (whom I miss dearly). I have had sangria on the roof of the Met (one of my favorite places in the world) and I have watched the sky turn green in Ozark Missouri before a thunder storm. I’ve been to Branson and Las Vegas. I have stood at the top of the Eiffel Tower and at the top of the fake one at the Paris Casino. I have been thrown out of bars in San Francisco and loaned my jacket to a naked stripper in Fresno, who was trying to catch some ZZZs on the couch. I have been lucky enough to fall in love and unlucky enough to get stranded at Heathrow for two days. I’ve had fish thrown over my head at Pike’s Place Market in Seattle and I have stumbled ass backward into fist fights in Sun Valley. I personally discovered that the snow in Park City Utah is nature’s best beer cozy and also have experienced a couple of sublimely perfect days in Salt Lake City; there’s nothing quite as perfect as being in love in the cold. I have smoked cigarettes in San Diego while listening to Nada Surf play live while landing jets passed overhead. I’ve driven a rented Vauxhall (on the wrong side of the road) all the way to Stonehenge and walked the world’s best museum in Shelburne Vermont. I have nearly died on a kayak off the coast of Catalina and I have been deliriously in love on 17-Mile-Drive around Pebble Beach. I have straddled the Prime Meridian and the US-Mexico border; for that matter I have flown a kite under a pier on a Mexican beach and personally haggled over the price of a lobster dinner. I have watched a Minute Man III missile launch from Vanderburgh before the sun had come up and I have stood on the flight deck of an operational aircraft carrier, with Tchaikovsky blaring in my headphones. I have known more amazing women than is fair and I have been lucky enough to love some of them and to be loved in return. I have unhooked corsets in dark rooms and made love on a bare stage (empty audience). I have been found guilty in court of a misdemeanor and I have cried in front of more than one therapist. I have fallen in love with the Brooklyn Bridge and been terrified by the Coronado Bridge. And next week I will go white water rafting on the American River and the week after I will hike into the Grand Canyon and then ride a helicopter out of it. There is no end to the things that I love about life, and while life never seems easy at the time, it is simply and always worth the effort.

From time to time I re-fall in love with life.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Amazing Kinetic Car Sculpture.

A strange and haunting little short about a guy who built a toy-car city. For fun. Over the course of four years. Odd and amazing? Certainly. Am I afraid I’m going to turn into one of the weird people who does stuff like this? Most certainly.



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Worried about Me?

So were you worried about me?

I had been posting – like – constantly and then, last week … almost nothing.

You must have been very concerned. You're so sweet.

I’m sure you didn’t know what to do with yourself. Were you able to find some other website on the internet where you could fritter away all of those precious moments of your life?

For my part I was simply very busy at work and sapped of strength and vigor. There was even a night last week when I fell asleep at 8pm. Can you believe that? It’s like I caught a lameness disease or something. Thankfully however, it is not a chronic condition! At least I hope not …

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Entrepreneur.




Entrepreneur
by james bezerra

Sally sells sea shells by the sea shore.
Sally secretly stashes the cash under her mattress.
Sally gets audited on account of her unreported mattress-cash stash.
Sally serves a sentence of six to sixteen months in the State slammer.

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Body in the River #1.

Body in the River #1
by james bezerra

They found a body in the river!
Let’s go watch ‘em fish it out with hooks!
Eeeeww! How purple and puffy it looks!
Hey … isn’t that your brother?

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Body in the River #2.

Body in the River #2
by james bezerra

Sad to see him so alone;
man-shaped bulge in the river.
Purple flesh peeling from bone,
that’s how we found my brother.

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Wildlife TV = Deep Psychological Problems.



I realized yesterday that since I have been single I have been watching significantly more wildlife and nature shows. And when I say “significantly” I mean about a hundred thousand million percent more. Are these two things connected? Or am I making a false correlation?

Is it:
Being single = watching more wildlife programming

Or is it:
Being single = having more free time = watching more wildlife programming

Or am I looking at it wrong? Maybe it’s this:
Being single + having more free time = watching more wildlife programming

The difference between the last two would be that I have more free time because I am single, whereas the second one says that those two things are true independent of one another.

Or maybe it isn’t about free time at all. Here is the nightmare scenario:
Being single = having to think about dating = fear of having to date = preparing for the vicious dating world by watching wildlife shows

Is my subconscious really so afraid of the prospect of dating – which I have not done very much of in my life – that it is trying to prepare itself this way? No way!

Here is one that’s completely different, but which I would be comfortable with:
Sudden interest in nature & outdoor activities = interest in television programming about nature & outdoor activities = watching more wildlife programming

See, that would be okay and make sense, right?

But wait! What about this:
Being single = sudden interest in nature & outdoor activities = interest in television programming about nature & outdoor activities = watching more wildlife programming

Or worse, this:

Being single = having more free time = sudden interest in nature & outdoor activities = interest in television programming about nature & outdoor activities = watching more wildlife programming

That would be awful! Because it would mean that both my interest in outdoorsy natureness AND my watching of wildlife programming are all derived from my boredom caused by being single! Oh no! I think that would mean that I have lost all capacity to be genuinely interested in anything! My whole life is a lie! This is just shameful and awful! My life is so hard! (Though not as hard as a penguin’s. Man, those poor little bastards have it rough.)

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Consider.

** The editors here at Standard Kink are even more sorry than usual about how bad this next one is. **

Consider.
by james bezerra

What would you do
if you suddenly woke up as a ewe?
Who could have changed you?
And why would they do
such a strange thing to you?
Would you go hunting for
that nefarious you-to-ewe converter?
And assault him with your cuteness
until he made it his business
to re-convert you
from a ewe
and back into you?
That is what I would do!

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An App You Should Buy.


If there was an app that reviewed ransom notes for context, I think that I would buy it. You know how Word gives you different colored squigglies depending on what is wrong? Red ones for misspelling and green ones if it thinks there’s some sort of grammar mistake. (Funny story, my Words has – I think – thrown its arms up in exhaustion and given up on even trying to correct me anymore. Given that my writing style tends to employ a lot of fragments. Like. A. Lot. And also because I have no problem starting sentences with “because” or “and” and “or”. This is not laziness of my part! It is my narrative voice! And stuff.)

Anywhoo, I think it would be fun if there was an app that would read those ransom notes you write all the time and give you squigglies if you’re giving away too much information. Like if you wrote, “It is dark in this basement where I am keeping your Pomeranian” then it would give you a squiggly and when you right click it would suggest, “It is dark where I am keeping your Pomeranian”. See, because the way you wrote it you would be – essentially – telling the people looking for you that you are in a basement.

Or if you wrote, “Bring the money in a green duffle bag to the bus station, which is where I live” then you would get a GIANT red squiggly and when you right click it would suggest simply, “Bring the money in a green duffle bag to the bus station.”

Or if you wrote, “How come your dog won’t eat this Panini I got from the Starbucks next door?” then it would suggest simply, “How come your dog won’t eat this Panini?”

But you would still have to employ some cognitive thought because if you wrote something like, “I’m not actually going to kill your Pomeranian if you don’t pay me, but I just really need the money for some more botox for my girlfriend Mysti - who dances at the Gilded Garter downtown - and to pay Phil the Bookie for all that money I lost on the Sea Hawks game last weekend” then the app might just say: no suggestion. Or it might suggest, “Just get out of the ransoming business.”

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How I Revolutionized Condiment Delivery.




How I Revolutionized Condiment Delivery
by james bezerra

If I were to start up
an internet start-up
I would call it, “Ketchup Getti’up!”
We would digitally supply you
with condiments like ketchup
and it would all be delivered through
your USB ports!

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Headless Horse.

Headless Horse
by james bezerra

How would you like to buy
this very nice headless horse I have here?
He gets under bridges that are none too high!
He can haul just as much gear
as a horse which has a head.
And you can see yourself he isn’t dead!
He simply has no head, nor neck.
But for what the heck
do you really need a horse’s neck?
And just think, he has no teeth
with which to bite you or your kin.
What a giant relief!
You will thank me when
you’re loading your new headless horse in
to a very short barn or transport cart.
A headless horse is just more economical
and while some may find it comical
eventually you’ll see, it’s very smart!

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East Coast Earthquake.

East Coast Earthquake
By james bezerra

I sure hope the
East Coast earthquake
did not wake
the giant lizard
we keep in the Atlantic.
Out of Cold War panic
we hired a wizard
to put it there
and then we did declare,
“Soviet subs beware!”
But then we forgot where
exactly we put him down there.

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Headless Horse (Reprise).

Headless Horse (Reprise)
by james bezerra

It is not my responsibility
that your headless horse died!
When you buy a headless horsey,
the elevated risk of death is implied.
Just because I sold it,
doesn’t mean I guaranteed it!
You are the nitwit
who believed that a horse with no head
would not soon be dead.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dear Libyan Rebels.



Rebels Gain Near Tripoli.

Dear Libyan Rebels,

We’re really sorry that we were kind of a tease about that whole, “supporting freedom and democracy” thing, but we’ve just been really busy, you know? It’s not that we don’t like you, it’s just that we’re kind of already involved in a pretty serious “supporting freedom and democracy” relationship (two actually, but don’t tell, because Iraq always gets super jealous and loses its temper when we stop paying attention) and we just really want to see where that goes, because we have already put a lot of time in. But maybe one day, if you’re still wanting some freedom, and stuff, then maybe we can give it a try, maybe. But – like – something casual, like lifting those export tariffs and maybe just a little over-the-clothes action.

TTFN,

The United States of America


P.S.
We’re super proud of you though!

P.P.S.
We always liked you better than Egypt, but ssshhhh, don’t tell!

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Complex Theological Questions Simplified, for the Kids.

Complex Theological Questions Simplified, for the Kids.
by james bezerra




If you believe in Free Will
then you think Cruela de Vil
chose to be so evil.

But if you believe in Predestination,
then you think a dead Dalmatian
was God’s specific inclination.

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Flee-dom!

Flee-dom!
By james bezerra

If it were up to me
we would all flee
from work today
and on a beach we would lay
and ponder the beautiful sea!

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Adventures in Banking.


Do you think that adventurers can get a loan from the bank? Like for a high-altitude balloon? Or to fund an Amazonian expedition? Or does that money have to come from donors who expect to not get anything back? Because I would think that the bank probably wouldn’t give a loan to someone for the specific purpose of doing something dangerous which might result in the loan-taker being killed and thereby rendered unable to repay the loan. So probably I couldn’t go to the bank and be all like, I would like to build my own rocket ship/solar airplane/pedal-powered catamaran!

Probably even thinking about this – much less writing it down and then taking the time to post it online – is just a complete waste of time, right?

Yeah, I thought so. Sorry. Carry on.

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Hammock Camping.

Hammock Camping
by james bezerra

I am hell-bent
on not taking a tent
to the Grand Canyon.
I have a better plan:
in a hammock I shall sleep!
Surely it will keep
me safe and sound
and comfortably off the ground.
Plus it is lighter in my pack
which means more comfort for my back.
So as long as I can find
more than one tree
I will sleep quite happily.

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Single-Walled Dream


So this is going to be one of those posts that you probably just want to skip, but why the hell is is so difficult to find a very light-weight single walled tent? I have a double-walled Eureka Spitfire 1 that weights around three pounds. So how come they can’t just make a tent like that with only the single wall? Doesn’t it seem like that would be both lighter and cheaper? But noooo. All the single-walled tents I can find (which are not $400 - $500+ weight at least four pounds! And this is not one of those things that I just rant about without having any information, no sir. I have been out there looking for one.

Basically all I am asking for is a vent-able rainfly with a floor. Why is that so difficult to find?

See, this is when I start wishing that I had the ability to sew or – you know – make things.
I am planning to buy a Grand Trunk All Terrain Hybrid Shelter, which is – more or less – just a strong tarp which can be strung up like a hammock but also used as a tarp tent. How hard would it be to take something like that and add some zippers along the edges to make it a full-enclosure? Sure, it would take some thought, but don’t Kelty and REI and Seedhouse pay people to think about exactly this?

I guess what I’m describing is what they now call a “bivy-shelter” and I would be fine with one of those, but the good ones weigh as much as my tent but cost more. So what gives? Huh? I’m not being rhetorical.

Anyway, I just felt this was a topic that is seldom bitched and moaned over and thought that I would share. You’re welcome.

P.S. I did recently come across a super-cheap single wall tent on Amazon and may even order it once I do some more research, so it is possible that this post is not only poorly written, but also entirely off-base in all of its assumptions.

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Strip Club Lament, or: Is it Inappropriate to Post Poems about Strip Clubs?




Strip Club Lament, or: Is it Inappropriate to Post Poems about Strip Clubs?
by james bezerra

I haven’t been to a strip club in forever!
Let’s all go to Vegas together!
We shall leave tonight!
Once there, we just might
watch the dancers while they
dance the night away –
in a very tasteful way –
of course.
I don’t mean to be coarse.
I should have been more clear;
we’ll go to the classiest club there …
as long as you’re willing
to pay for my evening!

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Hiking with Helium.

Hiking with Helium
by james bezerra

I am designing
a backpack for hiking
that has a helium bladder,
because helium is lighter than air.
It will make hiking better
since it will feel like nothing is there!
I think people will benefit
from a bag that gets lighter
the more you put in it!
(just don’t set it by the campfire)

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A Light Bulb Joke.





Q: How many Republican Presidential Candidates does it take to screw in a light bulb?

A: What?! President Obama let the light bulb burn out? That’s because he’s a socialist! And Black, but we won’t ever actually say that out loud.

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How Much Weight to Carry.


First, I want to apologize that so many of these recent posts have concerned backpacking. You probably don’t wake up in the morning and think to yourself, “Gee, I wonder what outdoorsy minutia Jamie will bitch about today” or maybe you do, I don’t pretend to know what goes on in your head.

This stuff just happens to be on my mind today because I have less than a month until my Awesome Super-Fun Grand Canyon Adventure and I still have a lot of preparing to do. I will not bore you with all of the details, but I am trying to figure out how to make the trip with a pretty minimal carry weight (I want a base pack weight closer to ten pounds than fifteen, and a total weight of less than 25 pounds) but still with enough of the things that I will need to be able to enjoy the trip (I am neither an ascetic nor a masochist after all), so things like backpacks and shelters are just on my mind a lot at the moment.

All that being said, I think that I might totally dork out tonight and just spread all of my stuff out on the floor of my bedroom, weigh it all again, stare at all of it and think. This is something that I enjoy doing sometimes and I think that tonight this will be a real winner of an activity. Does it sound ungodly boring? You bet it does! Is all of this backpacking and hiking and jogging and blogging-so-much and writing-a-whole-lot actually just my way of trying to deal with the fact that I am not very good at being single and have been kind of lonely lately? You bet’cha.

But that doesn’t mean that it can’t be fun, right? Or, maybe I am framing this discussion wrong. See, it isn’t that I am lonely and so took up these hobbies, but rather that it never really occurred to me to do any of this stuff before, and – as luck would have it – I like doing these things, and clearly have the time. Do I like them as much as having a partner in my life and reliable access to physical contact and intimacy? Certainly not, but we are all just trying to make our way through the world, you know? And so we do what we need to do to make the days a little better.

I’m realizing right now that this post is sort of starting to sound like a depressing Cure song or something; that really isn’t the intent. I’m just thinking with the keyboard I guess. It’s a form of therapy for me and it allows you some fun internet voyeurism of the sort that doesn’t require you to immediately delete your browsing history (You know what I’m talking about. Yeah you do), so it works for both of us I guess.

Anyway, unless you would like to come over and provide me with some reliable access to physical contact and intimacy, then I think that I will probably just have a nice quiet evening weighing backpacking gear on my little scale and such.

Oh, and just to be clear, I was innocently joking about the physical contact, not propositioning the internet en mass. Unless you’re into that kind of thing, in which case I was totally serious.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Inadequate.



Inadequate
by james bezerra

I have some frustration
because playing The Game of Life
was not an adequate preparation
for living the game of life.

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Snowmelt.

Snowmelt
by james bezerra

For now you may just be
a frozen stream; solid, wintery.
I may only be a mountain
- distant, looming, snowy -
but soon we’ll both be wrapped in Spring
and those warm, long days will bring
a thaw in me, and I’ll commence to melting
and I’ll send all my tributaries to you,
like fingers reaching for you
and I will flow into you
and you will swell mightily.

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Election Politics, Shit Slinging.


I will freely admit that I watch msnbc. I like Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell, but I will also freely admit that I do consider them to be info-tainment, not the news. They sling propaganda that I agree with and sometimes I like that. I hope (though I doubt) that viewers of FOX NEWS feel this same way about what they watch.

Anywhoo, you can really tell that the 2012 Presidential election is kicking over into a new gear because I was watching my dearest Ms. Maddow last night and I could feel the liberal indignation emanating from the TV the way that heat rolls out of an oven. I realized that we have passed into a new state of being and that we will all be here until November 2012. Now I am Mister Liberal Indignation, but I just wasn’t ready for it yet. I figured we would have at least a few more months until I had to start getting all pissed off at the stupid shit that flows from the mouths of Republican Presidential candidates, but no! Apparently we are already off to the races. I am not particularly happy about this turn of events, but it is what it is. I think that I personally will hold off on spewing forth any virulent bile for the time being, yes I will probably continue to write crappy poetry about how dumb Michele Bachman is, but that’s just for sport really and not so much politics.

I just don’t see the point in getting all riled up until we get to the general election. If anything, I think it is kind of fun to watch the plethora of Republican candidates claw one another’s eyes out. It’s like they’re contestants on a reality show called “The Biggest Douche”.

That being said, the talking heads on my side are getting a little too douche-y and a little ahead of schedule for my taste. So I guess we’re all assholes now.

Ironically I do believe that President Obama really is the only grown-up in the room. Even when I get pissed at him for being such a centrist, I do still respect him. I hope that he manages to get through this election without having to sling too much bullshit. I hope we the people will let him.

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Ode to Richard Grieco.

Ode to Richard Grieco
by james bezerra

Where did you go
Richard Grieco?
Is your hair still towering?
Are your eyes still smoldering?
I really can’t recall
why I remember you at all.

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Why We Can’t be Buddies.



Why We Can’t be Buddies
by james bezerra

You could be my Tonto
and off we would go
on adventures far and wide,
until I can no longer hide
the way I feel about you.
But when I try to feel you,
you’d probably just say
“Take your hands away,
I’m not that way!”
Then it would we awkward
as our friendship spirals downward,
until the inevitable day
when you ride away
into the sunset, without me.

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Caution.

Caution
by james bezerra

How much of your
relentless caution
is just preparation
for imagined failure?

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Dear Texas ...

Dear Texas,

You know, clearly things are just going too well in the country right now, would you mind sending us another of your super-conservative, fundamentalist-Christian, yahoo governors?

Thanks,
The Editors here at Standard Kink




P.S.
In other news, we here at Standard Kink have officially fired Iowa from being a state. If Canada or Mexico or France or Chile or Luxemburg, or really any other country out there would like Iowa, please feel free to start redrawing your maps and updating you civics books. Over here in America we have already begun building a wall around the former state of Iowa. For the time being, please enjoy this article from the Borowitz Report.

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Bachmann Won in Iowa?

Bachmann Won in Iowa?
by james bezerra

Bachmann won in Iowa?
Those voters need a brain enema!



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Fun with Words!


Today one of the guys I work with described something as “an exercise in pedanticism” and I just thought that was kinda cool.

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Fraggle Rock the Vote!

I do not have the time or energy to do this, but I think that someone should start a website called “Congressmen who look like Fraggles.” It could have side by side pictures of our Congressmen and their Muppet doppelgangers. I have been watching the news a lot lately and I have got to tell you, I’m starting to think that one could be forgiven for confusing the inside of the Capitol building with Fraggle Rock!



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If Not, I Don’t Have the Time.

If Not, I Don’t Have the Time
by james bezerra

I have not played
this Angry Birds game
that has so much fame,
will playing it help me get laid?

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Not Bad Days.

Not Bad Days
by james bezerra

Quite a lot lately
I’ve had days that
don’t go badly.
However that
isn’t as swell
as a day that
goes well.

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DO NOT JUDGE ME!


I was writing over the weekend and discovered that I needed one of my characters to have a job, or rather, a career. What I actually needed was for him to have some money in the bank but not have to go to a workplace (it’s all very complicated, he is suffering from amnesia [DO NOT JUDGE ME! It is only a cliché if you let it be! And anyway, he exists in a storyline that is fictional within the novel itself, so the cliché is understood to be a cliché. So there!] and I need him to have some free time). So I made the completely asinine decision to make him a poet, but - like - a really successful poet (I know, right? I am totally giving away my narrative authority by doing it; who has ever heard of a poet with no day job?!) But it’s fiction and anybody who has a problem with it will have already stopped reading by that point anyway (did I mention one of the characters lives with a talking spider? Yeah, it’s that kind of novel).

More than just being a practical narrative solution though, having the character be an amnesiac poet allows him (and by extension, the Reader) to explore some poetry for clues as to the nature of identity. As a writer, it allows me a new kind of connectivity between some of the storylines. See, since the amnesiac poet is a fiction within the novel (essentially a story-within-a-story … don’t groan, I can make it work!) the Reader will sometimes encounter fragments of poems in the outer frame (the writer who is authoring the fiction) and in the inner frame (the amnesiac poet who is the fiction) and I think that will lend a new and interestingly slippery connection between the stories.

I will spend just a few moments here justifying my use of both Retrograde Amnesia and a story-within-a-story framework.

First, I’m trying to write something that is a sort of jigsaw puzzle. I’m trying to write the sort of book that you think about even when you’re not reading it. The kind of book that you want to mentally play with like a Rubik’s Cube. As a reader some of my favorite books have been the ones that asked me to do a little bit of mental work. The House of Leaves makes you actually decode a letter hidden within the text. Steve Erickson’s Tours of the Black Clock is narratively structured like the mystery its protagonist is trying to solve (ie: what’s in the secret room? : The story of the secret room is what’s in the secret room!) So – yes – I am trying to write a book that is a labyrinth and a game. I make no apologies for that, because imagine how cool it would feel if you actually had figured out The Sixth Sense like you always tell people you did. Or if you actually had figured out that Kevin Spacey is Keyser Soze! I’m not writing a twist ending or anything, but I am laying out a structure that will allow you to make connections at your own pace. If you don’t make them on your own, I promise I will knit it all together for you by the end. But if you do figure it all out somewhere along the way, then I think that the book will open up for you like a flower and you will get to enjoy surfing its interconnected tides until the last page (sorry for mixing metaphors there). Okay, so that’s why I’m using a story-within-a-story framework in some places.

The amnesia thing: okay, I know that this is kind of trite and over-used by lazy writers, but I feel okay about it because it will be fun for the Reader. Everybody likes a good “Who am I?” story because we are essentially all living our own every single day, in a much more subtle way, obviously. Plus – as I said – I’m okay with it because it is understood to be a fiction from the get-go, I’m not trying to pull some meta-fictional M. Night Shyamalan parlor trick or anything. Plus, that means that I’m not the hack! The writer inside my story is the hack! Not me! So there!

If anyone is still reading this post at this point, I just want to apologize for the amount of writing I have been doing on here lately about writing. I know it is just a lot of inside-baseball and probably terribly boring to read, but it does me a lot of good to work it out in my head. That is the nice thing about having a blog that no one reads, it allows me the freedom (and the excuse) to write all of this stuff out and hopefully come to understand it better myself. The other fun thing about having a blog no one reads is that if I want to post a picture of my cat trying to steal a cookie, followed by a picture of Richard Nixon and Elvis (if you don’t know the story behind this picture you should totally Google it!) followed by a picture of Ingrid Michaelson, well then I can do that.







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Friday, August 12, 2011

Guess-Who-is-Texting Me.

Dear The Internet,

I am currently involved in a game of guess-who-is-texting me. A number not in my contacts is texting me and seems to know a lot about me. Since you probably don’t know them either, feel free to mystery-text them yourself! No one will ever know and I will never tell! This is a consequence-free situation for you! Let your lesser angles win for once! If you can’t think of any suitably harassing thing to say, just tell them that Jamie says hi.

818-652-1614

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Unfunny Priest.

Unfunny Priest
by james bezerra

A priest walked into a bar alone.
The bartender said, “Well that’s just not funny.”
So he called a rabbi and a Sufi
and they all drank happily.

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London Riots!



London Riots!
by james bezerra

Dear Londoners,
do not act like Greece, behave!
What would the Queen say?!

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I’m a Voter Too.

I’m a Voter Too
by james bezerra

I love our President,
but he doesn’t really represent me.
You see, I’m a flaming liberal
complete with bleeding heart
and a deep love of Head Start.
I listen to NPR and support a woman’s right to Choice.
So hey, Mister President, maybe give voice
to some of the things I care about,
like marriage equality.
I don’t want to hear that your opinion is “evolving”
I want to see you do some Presidenting
and a little less compromising
when “comprising”
means giving away
everything I believe in.

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Or Do You Want to Eat Out?

Or Do You Want to Eat Out?
by james bezerra

Come to my place for dinner!
I’m no chef, just a beginner,
but I’ll make you some raccoon casserole!
I promise it won’t be dull,
because I’ll stuff that main dish
full to the gills with live fish!
And while I cook our entre
make sure the appetizers don’t get away!
They’re beetles of the scarab variety
which I’ve covered in gouda and brie!

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Writing about Writing, How Novel.


I have been writing a lot more these last couple of months, which is actually quite nice. I am working on a “novel” that I have been endlessly prewriting and researching for literally years. In those years my life has changed a lot – new cities, new jobs, new relationships, school, blogging, and all sorts of different kinds of mental states - but all that time I have had this “novel” kicking around in the back of my head. Now that I am not in school and am single and have managed to finally find a groove at work that eliminates a lot of my stress, I have been tackling this writing thing with a renewed zest. I’m very proud of myself because this past weekend I sat down and wrote for SEVEN HOURS and completed about twenty-five pages. And this was not fun, lazy, stream-of-consciousness writing, no, this was writing with goals. Things needed to happen, dammit! Characters needed to be introduced, themes initiated, places described, clues dropped, mysteries begun, storylines tantalizingly interconnected with just the right amount of subtly.

Well last Sunday I finally cleared the 100 page mark. Although it is a completely arbitrary benchmark, it is a big deal for me personally because I always give a (big) novel about 100 pages to lay it all out for me, especially if there are multiple storylines involved (I am writing three main story lines with offshoots here and there for fun. And some point-of-view shifts in there too, just to make things more complicated and interesting. Plus there is some movement back and forth in time depending on the character(s) involved. This sounds needlessly complex, right? I know. Please don’t judge me. I’m building a fun house, okay? And a fun house has a lot of stuff in it.).

So I am very pleased at the moment. I feel like I have moved out of the beginning. From this point on I am writing the meat of it; the real story. A lot of writers like to break everything into a three-act structure just because virtually every story can be broken down this way if you look at it hard enough. I don’t think that way when I am building a story structure, but sometimes it can be hard to see the forest for the trees when you’re in the writing and I find it helpful to step back and try to see the three-act structure as I’m bumbling along. Well I’m 100 pages in and I have to confess that I am not yet at the end of my first act, but I’m getting there. And, more to the point, I’m excited about it!

If the first act is introducing your characters and setting the scene and laying out the conflicts, then the second act is all the stuff that actually happens and then the third act is your climax and trying everything up. Think of it as Who, What, and How. WHO is in this movie? What is this movie about and WHAT happens, and HOW it all ends. (I’m just riffing right now, none of this is scientific or English Department approved) Well lots of writers hate the second act, and I understand why, but I am really looking forward to it. As a reader or – say – someone watching a movie, the second act should be the good part. This is where all the car chases happen and the bank gets robbed and the protagonist gets double crossed and all that good stuff that you know and love, but the reality is that it can be a real drag to write because it’s all sort of obligatory at that point. The first act is fun to write because it’s like you’re creating these interesting people and getting to know them and there’s really no pressure yet. This is when you start to think, “Oooh! And later there is going to be an awesome car chase!” But by the second act you have already invented this person and they’re starting to annoy you because they aren’t doing what you want them to and you’re all like, “Listen motherfucker, you have a car chase to get to!” and you feel all of this pressure to get to the car chase already, but you do have to get there and you realize that nine other things have to happen before you can get there and you just don’t feel like writing any of those other nine things today, so you don’t and before you know it you have sixty pages of a story that you haven’t worked on in a year.

That’s what happens normally anyway. I will admit here that I am kind of a free-spirited, tree-hugging hippie when it comes to writing though, because I do not chart out - in great detail - what needs to happen in every single scene, and I often spend (too long) letting my characters wander around and find the world interesting rather than scooting them along to that car chase. Incidentally this is why I can’t write a decent script treatment to save my life (self-described screenwriters often consider this to be lazy, but I consider most self-described screenwriters to be fake writers, so, you know, there’s that).

Please now put your tray tables into the upright position because the captain has turned on the No Digression sign and we will now be returning to the main thread of this longwinded blog post …

The point is that I am actually excited about getting into the second act. I think because I have been living with these people (in my head) for so long and spent so much time working out the details (in college I took a mythology class specifically as a preparation for one day writing this story) that now I just want to get out there with them and make everything happen! So sure, the first hundred pages have taken me like five years (more or less) but I’m hoping that the next hundred pages (and all the pages after that) take months and not years.

These are very exciting times! And I’m remembering what I enjoyed about all of this writing stuff in the first place, which is a nice bonus.

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Tar and Feather.

Tar and Feather
by james bezerra

I would like to live in a place
where weathermen had to face
some tar and some feather
when they’re wrong about the weather.



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Slow Workday.

Slow Workday
by james bezerra

I’m going to level with you
I had very little to do
at work today.

See, I got ahead of the curve
but as a result of my verve
I outran everybody.

So now I’m waiting
on other people finishing
stuff I need from them.

But it’s not the kind of job
where I can just be a lazy blob
and waste time mindlessly online.

But just to be clear
I did not spend my time there
writing the poetry you’re reading here.
No sir.
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Space Travel!

Space Travel!
by james bezerra

MISSION CONTROL:
Oh no!
Your spacecraft’s telemetry
is wobbling dangerously!
Fire your retrorockets quickly
if you want to stabilize your reentry,
otherwise we might have a tragedy!

SPACECRAFT:
Hey Mission Control
We’re gonna have to go
to manual control
because our spacecraft has gone into a roll.

MISSION CONTROL:
Oh No!
You’ve gone into a roll?
Did you experience a failure
of your gyroscopic computer?

SPACECRAFT:
That’s affirmative.
So tell your engineers
that if we live
I’m going to kick their rears.

MISSION CONTROL:
Oh they have ears
and they can hear.
That’s a punishment they’ll surely fear.

THE ENGINEERS:
You know, it’s more likely
that the problem is user error
than a catastrophic computer failure.

SPACECRAFT:
You know, I don’t wanta hear it.
I’m busy trying to avoid a giant comet.

MISSION CONTROL:
A giant comet?!
Our recent scan
showed no comet in your flight plan.

SPACECRAFT:
We had to go to Plan B.
So after this comet is averted
we will have to ditch in the sea.

MISSION CONTROL:
Rescue teams have been alerted,
however we still fear
you’ll burn up in the atmosphere.

SPACECRAFT:
That’s a negative.
We will totally live
because the atmosphere
is quite thin here.

THE ENGINEERS:
Um ... yeah, it’s probably likely
you made a wrong turn at that last galaxy
and you’re about to land on the wrong planet.

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Two Things I Don’t Know.


There are a couple of things that I do not know. Yes, I freely admit it! There are at least two.

These are both pretty semantic, if that’s not your cup of tea, well then you stumbled onto this blog by accident and have probably stopped reading it by now.

Also, I am completely 100% aware that a quick Google search would probably provide me answers to both of these things, but I like a little mystery in life. Here we go:

Navel-gazing. I’m sure you have heard this term before. I’m not exactly sure what it means. I know that it has something to do with wasting time thinking, but does it mean gazing at one’s own navel and thinking important deep thoughts about one’s self? Or does it mean sitting around gazing at other people’s navels and thinking about them, like at a beach or something? I honestly don’t know, so I avoid using this term. Also – whichever it means – where does this derive from? Is there some story I don’t know about how Buddha found enlightenment while gazing into his belly button? And if so, what was going on in there?? Also, is there an outside chance that this is derives from a citrus-growing expression? Maybe something having to do with guarding your orange crop to from predators? Or orange thieves? I really have no clue. I red this term in a magazine the other day, which is what reminded me that I don’t know what it means.

Okay, you think that was bad? Here’s the other one:

The Count: If you watch sitcoms about young people comically tumbling through life (I am thinking of How I Met Your Mother, but there are a lot of – far inferior – shows out there that have covered this same ground) and someone is talking to someone else about sex that they just had (I’m convinced these conversations happen almost exclusively on TV, BTW) they will often make an allusion to the number of times. Like so-and-so has sex with so-and-so and then makes some poorly formed double-entendre to another so-and-so and then indicate a number of times. Here, I will give you a bad example in the form of a small play:

THE CHARACTERS:
MAN – has just had sex in an airplane bathroom
FRIEND – is traveling with the man who just had sex in an airplane bathroom

THE SETTING:
An airplane.

FRIEND: Did you just have sex in the airplane bathroom?
MAN: You know I did.
FRIEND: Would you like to say some poorly formed double-entendre about it?
MAN: I put her tray table into its upright and locked position.
FRIEND: I bet her overhead baggage may have shifted.
MAN: Yeah it did … twice!

Curtain!

Okay, so I’m sure you have seen a scene like this, so we’re all on the same page? Cool. Okay, so here is what I don’t know: is MAN saying that while in that airplane bathroom that they had sex twice? Or is he saying that he climaxed twice? Or that she did? I’m just confused as to what is being enumerated here. A lot of these scenes play out like the one I just described, where the characters were not in the airplane bathroom for very long. So is MAN bragging about having two short sessions of what I have to imagine was pretty quick and unsatisfying sex? Or is he just talking about one or both of them getting off more than once? Which – I guess – is worth bragging about but probably not something you can just say on TV in primetime … again, I’m just confused.

A, I being too literal? Probably, but what if I want to be a sitcom writer one day?! I will need to know this stuff!

So anyway, those are the two things I don’t know. Twice!

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Didgeridoo.



Didgeridoo
by james bezerra

The didgeridoo
is like an Australian kazoo,
but much larger, proportionally,
and much louder, unfortunately.

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The Engineer’s Brassiere.

The Engineer’s Brassiere
by james bezerra

The lonesome engineer
designed a new brassiere,
but not a single woman he met
would try on his new design.
So he went to the internet
and found a former Rockette
She said it fit just fine,
but thought it a little too pointy.
The engineer gave an apology
and explained that he’d been quite lonely
and perhaps had designed a fantasy.

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Lobster Divorce.

Lobster Divorce
By james bezerra

We know that lobsters mate for life
but what happens if and when
a lobster husband cheats on his lobster wife?
It happens with men …
Do they have a lobster separation?
and a schedule of visitation
with the lobster children?
Do they divide up their rocks and starfish?
And each try to start fresh?
Or would they work it out?
And take a second honeymoon
to a reef near Cancun?
And maybe fall in love once more,
Making love on the sea floor
and remember what they loved about
the other’s red exoskeleton?
And be mated for life again?



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Everyday Rhapsody.

The guy I share an office with listens to his internet radio out loud (which is fine with me since I use headphones), but I swear to god that “Bohemian Rhapsody” comes on at least once a day. Again, not complaining, but that’s strange, right? That some internet radio station out there would play it that often? I always thought it was one of those niche songs that you don’t hear much because maybe it was a B-side or something? I don’t know enough about Queen to know if it was a major, popular hit for them. Honestly, I’m of the generation that first heard it in “Wayne’s World” so obviously I’m no authority, but – I mean – every day? Can you really enjoy the weirdness of it if you hear it every single day? I think the prospect of the song losing its strangeness-factor is what’s mighty, mighty frightening.

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One vs. Many.

One vs. Many
by james bezerra

A captain without a first mate,
is just a guy with a boat

A man on a date with no date,
is just a guy in a booth.

A team with only one member,
is just a lonely guy with a soccer ball.

A speech with no audience,
is just a guy talking to himself.

A drum circle with only one drummer,
is just a dirty hippy.

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Complaining.

Complaining
by james bezerra

I do not feel like working today.
I would rather be running
or jumping
or drinking
or bank robbing
or nation building
or glass blowing
or bird watching
or movie going
or racecar driving
or palindrome inventing
or really any old thing
that isn’t working.
But I suppose I will have to make do with complaining.

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Fancy.



Fancy
by james bezerra

If you wanta get fancy,
next time use iMovie
to edit that sex tape
of you and your sweetie.
(And please stop offering
to let me do the lighting.)

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The Way Today.

The Way Today
by james bezerra

I am not feeling zesty today.
I’ve tried to find a way
to feel some other way,
but I still feel like a cloudy day.

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Cat Scratch.

Cat Scratch
by james bezerra

I have a mystery scratch on my head.
Probably a nefarious cat scratched me in bed.
While I slept there,
trusting and unaware,
one of ‘em clawed me
considering it a penalty
for some feline slight.
But surely anything might
have caused this behavior
so tonight I sleep in a cat-proof shelter!

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Can’t Keep it in Anymore …




I know that this is going to put me in the minority, but I just have to get it out; over the weekend I tried watching the Lord of the Rings movies again because they were on TV, and I really just can’t get into them I’m sorry, I just don’t like them. They’re really long and kinda dumb and if it wasn’t for how creepy the weird little Gollum thing is, they’re virtually unwatchable, in my opinion. And I’m not even trying to be a contrarian in this particular instance. The whole good/bad thing is so lamely simplified that it’s like the film makers think I’m a 12-year-old boy (at least Darth Vader was interesting). Every death-defying thing that the dumb little Hobbits have to escape from is so contrived that it feels like Middle Earth is just a giant Rube Goldberg of death*. Add to that the fact that the filmmakers are just so god damn in love with themselves that every single scene has twice as many shots in it as it needs to. Seriously, watch one of those scenes when Frodo is falling or something and Sam catches him just in the nick of time, invariably they are in slow motion and each time it takes like five minutes of close ups of their anguished faces to fully illustrate something that happened in two seconds?

Don’t even get me started on the “acting”. Yes Ian McKlellen, you’re a bad ass, I respect you, but you were totally phoning that in. The subtext in every single scene was, “Do you like my hair? I’m a wizard. I know, right? But they’re paying me a lot of money.” And is anyone really able to look at Orlando Bloom and not snicker a little bit at how simply stupid he looks? I mean, come on! It’s like an albino at a renaissance fair!

Anyway, like I said, I know you all disagree, but I just couldn’t keep it in any longer. I feel better now though.

I am currently involved in a class action law suit with Peter Jackson. I’m trying to get ten hours of my life back.


* A Rube Goldberg of Death (actually a pencil sharpener)


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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Pedantic Profusion!

On the off chance that you have noticed the profusion of posts I have been posting lately and asked yourself, “I wonder if Jamie’s prolonged nervous breakdown is finally snowballing out of control …” please rest assured that I am as okay as I ever am. I have simply found myself with a few extra pockets of time lately. And also, please don’t worry that I have given up on substantive-ness and am consoling myself by writing poetry about chicken abuse (see below post: “Lock the Bathroom Door Next Time!“), I have been doing some real writing too.

Additionally I have even had the time to get (marginally) better at cutting my own hair. I did it again last night and thus far have only found one patch that I missed! I am also working on getting ready for my Grand Canyon hike next month. So much to obsess over! I have to figure out a whole new sleeping system! And get a magical water purifier! And figure out a backpack packing strategy I am happy with. Believe it or not I actually am very excited about all of these things. Also I think my ankle has healed enough for me to start running again, so you should get yourself into psychological place where you can enjoy reading blog posts about how sore I am all the time! (Seriously, why do you read this blog at all?)

TTFN
j.


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In Defense of My Bad Poetry.

In Defense of My Bad Poetry
by james bezerra

It’s an art - not a science - writing poetry.
And not all art is always good.
You have to take the bad with the good,
and accept that sometimes it’s going to be messy.

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I’m So Gothic.

I’m So Gothic
by james bezerra

So is it odd
that I write all my correspondence
in puppy blood?

Is it too much?
My mother complains about smeared postcards,
but I think that it adds a nice personal touch.


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The Many Fears of Edgar Allen Poe.

The Many Fears of Edgar Allen Poe
by james bezerra

I bet you didn’t know
that Edgar Allen Poe
was terrified of snow.
When once asked by his paramour
why he chose to live in snowy Baltimore
he said he was too afraid to go
south to sunny Orlando
because he feared the ocean more.



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That super cool picture was politely borrowed from djibent.com

The Assassination of Robert Ludlum.


The Assassination of Robert Ludlum

by james bezerra

The novelist Robert Ludlum
was no dumb-dumb
when it came to acts of literary terrorism.

See, once John le Carre
found a devious way
to plant an explosive device
inside Ludlum’s lucky dice.
When the first author rolled for a seven,
the dice went off and killed eleven!
Miraculously Ludlum was unscathed;
by the thick Craps table he’d been saved.

That was not the only attempted assassination!
Ludlum was once shot during a mugging.
It was discovered, upon further investigation,
that the mugger had been Ian Fleming!
Ludlum survived after much recuperation.

Years later there was yet another close call.
See, after the shooting, Ludlum moved secretly to Montreal
where he toiled over his final Bourne book.
Little did he know that Tom Clancy* was impersonating his cook!
Clancy poured an entire gallon
of super-deadly poison
into the building’s water supply
hoping that - while bathing - Ludlum would die!
What was not accounted for
by the author of The Hunt for the Red October
was that Ludlum never took a shower!

But eventually the smelly, unwashed Ludlum ran out of luck.
While on a book tour in Washington D.C.
he was run down by a mysterious black Buick.
The murderous driver was, quite surprisingly,
none other than Agatha Christie!

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* Dear Tom Clancy, as you are the only living** author named in the poem above; please do not sue us for accusing you of attempted murder. By the way we have actually read The Hunt for Red October and think that it is a very good novel*** and not at all the sort of fetishist military hardware pornography you ended up writing in your more recent novels****.

** We actually do question whether or not Tom Clancy is still alive because it has been, like, a decade since he published a novel that didn’t say – in a small font under his name – “with so-and-so other writer”.
*** Though still not as good as the movie. The screenplay is simply more tightly written than the book, though to achieve that it left out too much back-story about Ramius’s wife, but whatever. If we’re all willing to overlook the fact that the Lithuanian Soviet submarine captain has a Scottish accent, then I think we can overlook the minor lack of back-story.
**** Sorry, we didn’t mean to insult your more recent work*****, we think all of it is great and please don’t sue us again.
***** Except that it isn’t actually your more recent work, since you are clearly dead******
****** Please do not sue us for saying you’re dead.

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Never Wrestle with a Pig: Why My Mom is Smarter than the Entire Democratic Congressional Caucus.

I was just reading an article about the finer points of the Debt Ceiling deal that was passed earlier this week (you should take a few minutes and read up on it, it is hilarious because it is so stupid) and I remembered a funny thing. Most of my life growing up my mother had (and I believe still has) a set of framed cartoons that usually hung in the laundry room of whatever house we were living in. One of them is a pig and some other farm animal (sadly I can’t remember what kind) and they are both covered in mud and the pig is smiling. The caption says, “Never wrestle with a pig because you both end up covered in mud, but the pig likes it.”

I wish someone would hang this cartoon up in the Democratic Cloak Room on Capitol Hill because that is exactly what happened with this whole Debt Ceiling fiasco. Republican obstructionism, fueled by (what I like to call) the Tea-Party-Willful-Misunderstanding-of-All-Reality, was allowed to create a situation where they got exactly what they wanted because of their willingness to act like complete assholes.

Instead of engaging in an actual negotiation, the Democrats said, “Wait … you don’t want to do exactly what we want? Oh no! Let us find some way to make you happy!” I swear to god it’s like Harry Reid and the others have some middle-child complex that causes them to try to please everybody (it’s ironic that I say this because I am a middle child and have one of these). So instead of negotiating, all we did was try to get the very obstructionists who created the crisis to get on board with us and in the process we gave up on the very concept of getting a fair deal. It’s like they sank the ship and when we tried to rescue them they said that they didn’t like our lifeboat, so we gave them the life boat and asked them to rescue us. (Well, it’s not exactly like that, but this is my blog so I can use less than completely accurate analogies if I want!)

Anyway, at least we can all sleep soundly knowing that come the next election cycle the fanatic Tea Party radicals out there are going to eat the current Republicans alive anyway. I cannot wait to see someone like Tom Coburn (R – Oklahoma, and my person arch nemesis) get the crap kicked out of him by a Tea Party nut job who is even more of an asshole than he is.

But back to the point: Never wrestle with a pig …

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Lock the Bathroom Door Next Time!

Lock the Bathroom Door Next Time!
By james bezerra

I may not be a professional farmer of turkey
but I know a thing or two about poultry,
and what you’re trying to do to that chicken
is legally forbidden!




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Not a River.

Not a River
by james bezerra

If you ever find yourself in New York Harbor
looking across at New Jersey,
then you’d want to know that the Hudson River
is not a river; it’s actually a tidal estuary.

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That One Temper Trap Song.

Is it possible to not love this song?



I know that this album has been out for a long time and that the song has been in the cultural ether for a long times as well (you heard it in “500 Days of Summer” and in that one Diet Coke commercial that made it seem like drinking Diet Coke was cool and I’m sure in many other places), but dammit, I just love it. I happened to randomly pop this CD in today while driving (yes, I still primarily use CDs because I find that if I have my iPod in the car I am constantly fiddling with it instead of focusing all of my energy on not hitting anything while I’m driving) and was reminded of what a good song this is. In fact the whole album is really quite good and if you don’t have it you should get it. Or ask my roommate to burn you a copy because that’s how I got mine.

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What Quantum Physics is.



What Quantum Physics is
by james bezerra

I like to think that quantum physics is
the study of things which are very, very small.
Like how much hope is actually left,
once all hope is lost.
Is it really none?
Or might there still be some?
Some residual quantity?
So small it can’t be measured,
but which still exists none the less.
The science of things so small
must make physicists quite pessimistic.

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Why I Sleep in a Mask.



Why I Sleep in a Mask
by james bezerra

I do not like
when spiders hike
nightly on my face.
Of all the places for spiders to pace,
that is my least favorite place.

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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Very Special Editor’s Note.

So you know how sometimes you’re reading through this blog and you come across something particularly ill-conceived and you actually say out loud, “Well that is just the stupidest godamn thing I have ever read. Why do I even keep reading this godman blog?”

Well, just so that you know, we here at Standard Kink sometimes get that feeling when we’re writing this stuff.

So today is going to be one of those days for you.

What awaits you below is some of the most egregiously dumb, time-wasting, sloppy and ridiculous work that we have ever posted.

This is when you ask, “Worse than that poem about Shark Week that didn’t even rhyme?”

Yes.

“Dumber than that time you wrote about all the unopened mail on your desk?”

Yes.

“More insipid then the poem you wrote about Kenny Loggins visiting you at work?”

Yes.

“Wow. That is pretty bad.”

Look it has just been that kind of day, okay? They can’t all be winners folks. But look, you try writing stuff for a blog every single day. It is really hard to generate content!

Abandon all hope ye who enter here!

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Bad/Good.

Bad/Good
by james bezerra

Redneck/Redhead
Draft Lottery/California Lottery
Serial Killer/Breakfast cereal
John Wayne Gacy/John Wayne
The Tea Party/a tea party
Hunting/Bargain hunting
Lynching/David Lynch
Republicanism/Virtually anything else
Getting a ticket/Getting free tickets to a Bon Jovi concert!
Having a stalker/Having a stalker who is Mila Kunis
Idle gossip/Gossip Girl
Worshipping idols/Billy Idol’s “White Wedding”
Having cancer/Being a Cancer
Star Wars: The Phantom Menace/Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Deforestation/FernGully
Charlie Sheen/Martin Sheen
FOX News/Fenneck foxes (So cute!)




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My Hippo is a No Go.

My Hippo is a No Go
by james bezerra

The other day I tried to ride the bus
and took along with my pet hippopotamus,
but the driver had to confess
that he couldn’t take both of us
because one of us was a hippopotamus.

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My Copula Plan.



My Copula Plan
by james bezerra

If I ever own a house with a copula
I’ll invite over Francis Ford Coppola.
We’d share some of his wine
and I’d ask, “Do you like this copula of mine?”
And he’d reply, “Did you only invite me to your
copula because my name is Coppola, and they sound similar?”
Then I would act all offended and shout,
“Francis Ford Coppola get out!
Out of my Copula!”

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Rich Rhymes on Offer.

Rich Rhymes on Offer
by james bezerra

It would be surprisingly easy to write
a poem about genocide,
since “genocide” rhymes with “cyanide”.
and also “cultures collide”
and also with “tried to hide”.

Also, “flee” rhymes with “refugee”
and “mass exterminations”
rhymes with “United Nations”
and also because “infamy”
rhymes with “crimes against humanity”.

One has to wonder why poets decide
to skirt the topic of genocide
when the appropriate words provide
such poetic potential.
I think that’s just unconscionable!
I wouldn’t avoid any such subject matter
when such rich rhymes are on offer!

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Bachmann.



Bachmann
by james bezerra

Am I the only one
who thinks Michele Bachmann
looks kinda like a reanimated skeleton?

Or that her positions
on immigration, gay rights and the poor
would be shared by Skeletor?

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Thanks Excel!

Thanks Excel!
by james bezerra

I have to thank Excel
because it helped be organize
my life’s financial hell
and allowed me to recognize
that I’m actually much poorer
than I thought before.
Thanks a lot.

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Mending.

Mending
by james bezerra

Here’s how you fix a broken heart:
to get a good start,
go back to the beginning,
back to when it wasn’t hurting.
Learn from what happened between then and now.
Then you should figure out how
to throw all that sour emotion away
and find a brand new way
to make today
a better day than yesterday.

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A Fairly Relevant Misunderstanding.

A Fairly Relevant Misunderstanding
by james bezerra

I thought it was great
when that dating site
found me a mate;
So forgive me for being rude
when it came to light
that my perfect mate was also a dude!

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Completely Reasonable Abuses of Power.




Completely Reasonable Abuses of Power
by james bezerra

If I were the Pope,
I would make it a mortal sin
for anyone else to win
a game of checkers with the Pope.

The Pope would also have the right
to call a “do over”
on any hand of Poker.

And I’d establish a law
that says everyone must speak in a whisper
whenever the Pope is hung over.

And perhaps I’d issue a decree
commanding women to find me
more attractive than George Clooney.

Also, I would double
the size of the collection plate
to pay for my new Caribbean real estate.

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Sometimes the Mall is Like the Zoo.

Sometimes the Mall is Like the Zoo
by james bezerra

Sometimes fat people
look like walruses
and sometimes skinny people
look like praying mantises
and sometimes girls
look like gazelles
and sometimes their boyfriends
look like bullfrogs
and sometimes grandfathers
look like hairy-eared goats
and sometimes babies in strollers
look like puffy-cheeked chipmunks
and sometimes sitting around the mall
is like sitting around the zoo.

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