Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Notes to Self

Hi All!

I wonder how far my self-aggrandizement can go.

This is a test to see just how much I can drive down my sagging web ratings even further by providing content not found anywhere else ;-)

Watch Laura and Ahnohld tonight;

Get the liver transplant paperwork done and mailed in;

Round up all the copies of Ian Hunter's "Strings Attached" DVDs that I have lent out;

Mark calendar for McCain's State Fair visit on Friday;

Smear Clorox on the moldy toilet and wash basin;

Use up pre-sale Fair tickets, unlike the ones from past years that I still have -- btw, throw those out. They are NOT collectable;

Sell those goddam New In Box Furbies on eBay -- you might get enough for 2 double cheeses;

Ask to "borrow" mom's Hummel collection to finance liver transplant;

Hold an "Everything's Free" garage sale. Reserve TUBS container to throw the rest into;

Take your pills;

Find a handyman to construct that tool shed that rots in the box in the garage;

Find a handyman to tear up the mouldy 50's "Wall to Wall" carpet and snap in a new laminate floor;

Work the Falcon Heights-Lauderdale Lions Fair Parking lot off Rosen Road, er Energy Park Drive -- world's loneliest job, especially now that everyone is back in school and no one is going to the Fair;

Post something interesting...


Monday, August 30, 2004

A Letter to Jim Boyd

Mr Boyd,

Looked in vain for you at the 1280 booth yesterday. Just read your crybaby piece. If the Stib editorial page is too conservative for you, look up Steve Perry. I'll bet he could squeeze you in at the City Pages. Geez.

As a youngster at St Thomas I was educated in Journalism by Norman Larson, Dick Youngblood and Father Whelan, who if he weren't spinning in his grave would give you a Youngblood "F" for your crappy writing.


Sunday, August 29, 2004

Fair Flop

Hi All!

Man I was psyched to make my radio premier on the mighty 1280. Had run over a script of witicisms over and over in my small cranium, with the idea of doing a take on John Kerry.

When I finally got the mike shoved in my mug by St Paul, he introduced me as a special guest...a Kerry impersonator!

Poof went brain. Straight out of character I went. Babbled a few things in my own voice before the mic was mercifully pulled away from my babbling yap.

Lesson. Don't start your on-air radio career with a "bit."

Ah well, I DID get to heckle Mike Erlandson, who asked me if am better off now than I was 4 years ago, which I honestly had to answer....once on the bottom, still on the bottom.

Also had a nice to and fro with Chris, an articulate young fellow who rules the College Democrats. He was pleasanly surprised to engage a fat, middle-aged fool with an Exxon/Mobil cap and a USA t-shirt in an intelligent conversation.

Had fun with the DFL Vets for Kerry about their clipboard with, like, two made up names on it. Made that three ;-)

The walk home was something reminiscent of the Baatan Death March, but a handful of ibuprofen and a nice nap has done wonders.

I got my arm stamped....do I dare go back after dinner? We shall see.


Block That Metaphor!

Hi All!

Good Sunday morning!

First piece that caught my eye today included the phrase that Kerry supporters are "becoming unhinged like a stuck door at Jackie Chan's house."

It gets better.

Check Doug Giles out today!

Am off to the fair to heckle the politicians and participate (if they'll have me) in the AM1280 noon-3 Northern Alliance show (streamed on the web for you out of towners).


Metaphor Update: Just heard Hillary answer Steffie Non-plussed's question about whether GWB was behind the Swifties ads, "A turtle doesn't get on a fence post by accident." Man, she is good. Never saw so much soft-pedaled venom come from so much plastic face surgery.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

The Noticer

Hi All!

On KSTP 5 (of all places) at the end of a piece glorifying departing protesters and before a wet kiss piece for Al Franken, the caption behind the newsbabe read..... "Departing Protestors."

Maybe I can get a job as a caption editor.


Holy HTML!

Hi All!

I cut and pasted a recent missive and it looked great on my computer. Went to a friend's house and it came out all gobbledygook!

Edited said post with the Edit HTML option and found litter alley as much worthless crap between my words than the number of words themselves!

Long editing job complete. Letter... now read clearly.


Friday, August 27, 2004

Photo Funnies

The Quietest Place On Earth during State Fair Week

As with all Funnies, click to enlarge, no Viagra required.Posted by Hello

A Letter to a Child

Hi All!

Here is something someone wrote and is willing to share.

29 July, 2004

My Dearest Child,

How do I begin to make amends to you for the bad examples I have set?

In most respects I think I’ve been a good parent, but my actions surrounding my disease may have taught you some negative lessons.

I was intoxicated on the day you were born, and most days during your whole life...
During my whole "adult" life.

When you were younger, I promised myself that I would either quit, cut down or at least not drink in your presence, once you were old enough to understand what you were seeing.

But I didn’t, couldn’t change.

You’ve witnessed a lot of awful things that have happened to me because of my drinking.

The way you cried when they took me away at the intervention is seared in my soul forever.

Yet, worse was yet to come.

You’ve seen me near death in the hospital.

You’ve seen me drunk and doing stupid things.

Worst of all, I often put drinking ahead of doing things with you.

Now look at the way things are.

I may have to go to jail or at least wear an ankle band so I can be tracked like an animal.

That super car, taken away forever.

Thousands of dollars that could be used for much better things.

A huge mess of a house, garage and lives.

Today, I swear to you a solemn oath.

On July 29, 2004, you will receive your best gift ever: a sober parent.

Still sick, but trying to heal.

Not duller by any means!

I will still be the same loving, nurturing caring and fun pal that you are used to.

But everything will be even better now so long as this dark cloud stays lifted from my life.

It's not easy to hold that cloud away, but now that I've confided in you, my precious child, perhaps you can help me make it so.


Charles Krauthammer: Going apoplectic

Charles Krauthammer: Going apoplectic

Great explanation for why the Democrats hate GW so much.

And this, from Jeff Jacoby regarding John Kerry:

" He came to prominence as a radical opponent of the war in Vietnam, yet now he runs for president on the strength of his service in that war. He portrayed the men who fought there as unspeakable savages, yet now he surrounds himself with Vietnam vets at every turn. He lent respectability to those who demanded that America cut and run, that it abandon a beleaguered ally, that it drop "the mystical war against communism." Yet now he insists that he would be a tough and vigilant commander-in-chief, one who would never disrespect allies, one in whose hands the security of the United States would be safe."


Thursday, August 26, 2004

Hottest New English Word Since Kindergarten

Hi All!

I have watched the web with bemusement as a fairly trite German colloquialism starts to worm into common English usage.

Sitzsprinkler, literally, "sitting sprinkler", ie., "a man who sits to pee," ie., a sensitive caring male who feels that he must give up his advantage over females in the urination department in order to show his support for sexual equality. I kid you not.

It's not about homosexuality (the Germans have some dandy slang for that!)

You didn't necessarily hear it here first, but be prepared to hear sitzsprinkler quite a bit from now on. Not long before Webster's will have to let it in.

For example, an evil Republican might say, "John Kerry is a sitzsprinkler." ;-)

I have been a sitzsprinkler out of necessity during some hospitalizations for serious medical procedures, otherwise I do it the way most men do, and where men often do, which is another advantage... but let's steer clear of that for now.

I do, however, close the seat and the lid, after wiping away the off-target sprinkles. "If you sprinkle when you tinkle, be a sweety, wipe the seaty!"

Even so, as another old saw goes, "No matter how you dance and prance, the last few drops land in your pants."


USOC Kerfuffle

Hi All!

The US Olympic Committee has caused a stir by taking the Bush campaign to task for referencing the Olympics.

Note: The Olympic Rings are not used in the ad, so no trademark infringement.

What is the incentive for what seems on the surface a petty, anti-patriotic complaint?

Here are a few theories:

1. A bunch of Kerry adherents on the USOC want to bash Bush and deflect attention from the Kerry war record discussions.

2. A bunch of Bush adherents on the USOC want more people to watch and pay attention to the very effective ad.

3. The USOC are a bunch of morons.

Wish my site was advanced enought to take a poll, but I vote 3. So I win.


The Real Iraq?

Hi All!

Just a short post to direct your attention to an Iraqi blog which depicts everyday life in that country quite to the contrary of the blood and guts fed to us by the Kerry, er, mainstream media.

Browse thru it and pick any entry. Intriguing stuff. I suppose the Left will dismiss this as a propaganda front, but it sounds believable to me.


Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Photo Funnies

Swift (pontoon) Boat Patrols Yellow River, August 2004 Posted by Hello

Trivia Training for Mitch

Hi All!

For those familiar with the Northern Alliance bloggers, they are having a big trivia contest this Thursday at Keegan's.

As self-appointed coach for blogger Mitch, I gave him a last-minute workout at Ol'Mexico last night. Mitch (and I) were wildly inconsistent, but he seemed to be hitting his stride by the last round, so I pronounce him in good, if not very good, but not great form for Thursday.

Hey, I did the best I could -- how's that for a vote of confidence?

If you haven't sampled AM1280, "The Patriot", check out Mitch and Company at Northern Alliance Radio from the Fair on Saturday and Sunday from noon until 3.


Duct Work

Hi All!

Among others, I belong to yahoo mail groups "XR4ti-Extreme" and "Liver_Transplant".

Today two mails came in sequence. The subject lines read "XR4ti Brake Ducts" and "Bile Ducts".

Synchronicity, eh?

Now all I need to do is subscribe to a Heating and Air Conditoning group.

Then I'll have all my "ducts in a row" :-)


Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Lyrical Interlude

Hi All!

Today's entry is a lighthearted little ditty by Ian Hunter. My read is that it could be considered a pretty pointed, but somewhat confusing social commentary. If I really wanted to dive off the deep end, I would suggest it could be meant to say that it could apply to the liberal elites vs. the conservative everyman --- morons all, in the end. Let's get those comments coming in!

by Ian Hunter (from the album "Rant", 2002)
Redacted to eliminate repetitive chorus' by the Wog, 2004

We were morons from the day we were born
We believed every word that you said - boy were we wrong
We're all fat now - on the sofas - mini morons - taking over
Cos we're older now...

We were morons - red, white and blue
We were working class kids on the skids - with nothing to do
We're all dead now - in our boxes - holding on to what little we go left
Cos it's over now...

Read moron newspapers, watch moron television
All laid on by slimy little, sleazy little, phony little morons
Etonians, Harrovians, think they're the chosen ones
And they poke fun at scruffy little, spotty little, stupid little morons

Ha ha ha ha, look at those morons
Ha ha ha ha, they do nothing but whine
And they're slow all the time
Look at those morons, never mind...

We can leave them behind, while we're dumbing them down, we'll be robbing them blind

Ah Ah, morons don't matter at all.
No education, no informatioon
Morons are boring, ugly and small
They lower the tone, lets get rid of them all

Will to learn - gone away
Force fed garbage every day
We're the slaves of smarmy little, self important, petty little morons
Oxford - Cambridge - see how the other half live
Steer well clear of lazy little, filthy little, funny little morons

Ha ha ha ha, look at those morons
Ha ha ha ha, they're such terrible types
And they're not very bright - look at those morons
It's all right...

Let them fight every night, while they're missing the point, we can do what we like

Ah ah, I'm 60 and what have I got
I live in a warzone, surrounded by morons
Don't tell me I'm free when I'm not
Ah ah, abandon hope all who live here
We are the morons that you declared war on
Now everyone's living in fear
We're starving, it's something that needs to be said

Morons can never escape from the fact, they can never escape and we hate you for that
We we're morons - but then again no, no, no!


Battle Fatigue?

Hi All!

Am I the only political junkie that feels "overinformed" about Kerry's Vietnam "service"?

The story will certainly reinforce the choices on both side's adherents.

I wonder how the "masses of asses" are responding, as that group will elect or re-elect the next president.

By now, thanks to the efforts of bloggers (especially Minnesota's own Northern Alliance), the Swift Boat Vets, conservative columnists, cable news and now even the "mainstream media", the issues raised should have reached even the densest of the ignorant, oops, I mean "undecided" electorate.

I wonder out loud if there is a point at which some backlash will hit the Bushies. In that regard, the Republican National Convention comes at a great time.

Here's hoping that we get more than the vacuous, all-too-scripted tripe that the Dems spewed forth with their 3 hours of network coverage. It's time to take advantage of the Kerry camp's preoccupation with the Vietnam issue and move forward with concrete plans for the next 4 years.

One issue that is huge to me but has been pretty much ignored, is that of judgeships. Dare we attack the Dems for ruthlessly holding up appointments? Dare we have the guts to say that if re-elected, Bush will continue appointing judges who will go back to interpreting the Constitution strictly, instead of actively re-writing it?

The damage to Kerry on Vietnam is pretty much done. The dead horse is pretty much beaten.

If Bush uses the convention to express bold initiatives, people will begin to wonder of Kerry whether, to quote a phrase, "there's any there there."

Let we Republicans be the first to say, "Let's put Vietnam behind us. Let's "Move-on."


Monday, August 23, 2004

Photo Funnies

Ready to go to work on The New Economy Posted by Hello

Friday, August 20, 2004

Kerry's Boat Sunk?

Hi All!

Not enough sleep, I know. Got the garbage and recycling out by 7:30 7 bags of recycle and half a 30-gallon trash tub, just so you lefties doubt my credentials as a good citizen (OK, we cheated by donating bit of our detritus to the barrels of our vacationing relatives.

IMHO (In My Humble Opinion -- I feel the need to translate these old-style web abbreviations) JFK's Swift Boat has swiftly hit a sand bar.

All the purple hearts and other medals he "earned" in Vietnam (and who cares, anyway?) will not staunch the mortal wound done to his pathetic "Camp Pain"

Is it possible he will withdraw from the race? What the heck, it's worth a long-shot bet if anyone wants to "bring it on".

So much for my political moratorium. Guess I can't help it, but please stick with me...one day you might find something you LIKE on this humble internet destination.

Up the Mekong River, I still offer you


Sad Epitaph

Hi All!

FBS (Feverish Brain Syndrome) has carried me this far. I saw a report on the news that related quite disturbingly to my experience as reported in my "Life in Perspective" piece that might still be on the click-column but is in the August archives at least or scroll down. Whatever.

In retrospect, this cynical "read between the lines" asshole would have figured it out, but having spoken with the Mayor's wife at length a few days before her husband apparently willfully offed himself gave me pause.

The absolute innocence, even chirpiness she expressed in her description of the bad stuff that had happened to her family lately and her openness with a stranger who empathized with her husband and kids and had "really" lost his prized car, I had my eye a wee less jaundiced than my medical condition chronically exhibits.

Life is short indeed. Selfishness is endless.


Feces Hit Fan

Hi All!

Here's what I get for staying up too late.

The NYT has reeled off a 5-pager to discredit the guys who say Kerry is a ... a... well, um, less than truthful person as regards his military career which is the only thing he seems to be running on.

You might have to register to get the article, but I am WOB-sensitive this morning so click the link.


Thursday, August 19, 2004

Lyrical Interlude

Hi All!

Sorry if this is taken as a WOB (Waste of Bandwidth which dates me, as there is really no such thing anymore) but due to life's recent circumstances I have to share an old Ian Hunter lyric .

'Tis a bit depressing, and I have no idea what Ian was thinking when he wrote, but it relates to me and my personal demon and trying to get my kids to 18 alive. The kids, I mean...well, me as well I suppose.

Since this lyric was written 30-years ago and old Ian is still going strong, I find some inspiration in it.

Do you remember when the '60s were an era instead of the average age of a '60s rocker?

Sea Diver
On morning shadows, you were ill-spent,

"It's time", you said, or is it time you went.

I tried so hard to leave you,

I tried to sleep.

The hours you keep,

Oh Lord I wish I could escape this iron veil.

Ride on my son

Ride on my son

Ride until you fail

Something comes and something goes

And something dies before it grows

And I'm like a sea diver

Who's lost in space

Sweet death embrace

Oh Lord I wish I could escape this iron veil

Ride on my son

Right on my son

Ride until you fail

Kerry Heading for the Ropes?

Hi All!

Writing about my personal travails is tough, so I apologize for not following up on my promise to do some profiles of folks I met in treatment. Working on it, but wisely doing it in Word to get things just right.

In the wake of a fairly good turnout in St Paul and Hudson for our President, the sound bite we get from the opponent is bitching about a $150K ad campaign by the Swift Boat Vets and the related book.

It occurs to me that the Gentleman from the Elite East Coast doth protest too much. All the Soros millions, for example, of support through the gaping loopholes in McCain-Feingold can't make this tiger change his stripes.

As far as I can tell, John Kerry is a person who seeks the presidency for nothing more than self-actualization -- going for a life-long goal. Sorry, John, this ain't merely the eff'n Olympic Cheeks Sand Volleyball final. The future of our Country is at stake and that don't do it for me.

Resume '


"Served" 4 months
Running for President

Cripes, I could do better than THAT!

For all of President Bush's faults, and I can name more than a few, I respect the man for telling things as they are, even if not grammatically correct sometimes.

Now I am imposing a politics ban on myself -- I reserve the right to determine the length of sentence.

Thanks for your patience. Good stuff to follow after a short break. I have a lot of posts in Word that need polishing before publishing.

Better than this off-cuff stuff--I promise. I am as sure of this as I am that I was definitely not in Cambodia for Christmas in 1968 ;-/



Wednesday, August 18, 2004

In Fraters' Hands

Hi All!

Big Decision Night!

1. Go to Bush Rally with family on pre-serialised ducats.

2. Go to Porky's for a Twin Cities VW Club Bug'n Burger event.

3. Walk outside for a belated 2-block National Nite Out Partee'

4. Leave 3rd urchin in care of the Fraters, do Porky's and show off the '72 Bug for the Night Out crowd.

Too late to vote, but feel free to avail yourselves to the newly added comment link!

I'm guess'n 4. BWDIK



Flyoverland MN Gains Fame

Hi All!

Laura Ingraham is in town for today's Bush rally at the Xcel Energy Center. On her radio show this morning she said that she was reporting from "Flyoverland, MN." I will need to do much research, but I am almost sure that I invented that moniker -- I have copies of the Wang Basic-2 Report dated from the early '80's where I had a regular column named "Report from Flyoverland."

I have also used Flyoverland, MN on email list posts and eBay items.

Looking forward to the big Rally. My ticket says to get in line at 2:30 for the 5:45 event.

Hmmm. I've seen the fellow in person before, but I think all kids should see a living president at least once in a lifetime. I've seen every one since JFK and even got a handshake from Jimmah Cahtah.



Tuesday, August 17, 2004


Hi All!

Just a quicky. I was bored tonight and thought I'd have me a google. Box of chocolates. What should I find under my own name but a response that one of my musical gods, Ian Hunter, replying to a post I sent him after having seen him at the State Fair with Ringo's All Star Band.

How in hell do Google prioritize that shit?

So if you're of a mind to see what a 60+ year-old rock and roller has to say to little old moi, see if you can find a reference to "Kuettel" here.

OK, your too lazy to look it up so here it is:

So Saint Paul rocks and Minneapolis doesn't? What do I know, I'm just passing through. Yeah, I remember Sheila saving my rear. I did the same thing in Florida. Can't win 'em all. See you at First Avenue.

Ego boost, I guess. Can't even remember what I mailed to get that response. A bit over the line at the State Fair that year (and several others).

Will get serious again soon. Had a nasty fall from a mini-bike last weekend and the ribs are a bit tender, but the fingers and brain still work.


Oopsy Daisy!

Hi All!

The last post was just Mitch Berg showing me how to add links to my posts. Will delete soon but thought I'd leave it up for awhile for whatever reason. Like, um, asking for HELP!

Mister Big Guy of the Northern Alliance also helped me add a comment link and kicked my butt at NTN Trivia at Ol' Mex. Returned my jump starter. Thanks, Mitch!

Check out Ol' Mexico on Lex and Larp. Tell Frank, Greg, Mike or Bill, that "The Wog" sent 'cha Bountiful Free Buffet 3-6, 2 for one drinks 10-12. Smoking permitted, but lots of room for the nons, al fresco if you don't need to watch sports or play NTN trivia.



PS. Substantial posts to follow. Had a few days at the lake to clear my head of bad thoughts and fill it with....well, "other" thoughts which you will be wise to look for soon!

Monday, August 16, 2004

Dave Davies - What a Buzzkill

Dave Davies had a stroke and is partially paralyzed...

Herding Thoughts (Cats) + Reader Spelll Check

Hi All!

FLASH! This site is now feedback-enabled. So to test, I have published this off top-of-head and will award a valuable prize to the reader who can find and offer correction to the intened-unintended misspellings in this post. I will republish with kudos to the best editors.

Hold on to our hats, here goes!

So much too report, so conflicted on how much to reveal.


When I get chauffered to a weekend visit to dad's cabin, my eldest defers to my "Kinks" y musical infacutation on the audio system, has his driving environment, ie, "seat and mirrors and belts properly adjusted, and smiles approvingly at my infrequent but pointed observations...

Canoes and bikes tied down to a Subaru.... "Where's the Kerry sticker? Oh, there, right next to 'What would Wellstone do?' Awful lotta smoke out of the exhaust - guess it needs a tuneup. Well, at least they are a good rabbit! Stay 7 lenths behind and pace it. We'll arrive in no time!"


Why do people hate George W. Bush with such ferocity? I "hated" Clinton, but I guess we need to come up with more adjectives to define "hate" Is it always thus with political adherents? I guess so, and I guess that's why I lost two legislative races. Way too nice. Seriously. I will mail you my trifold if you don't believe it --I gots about 10,000 left.


A person whose opinion I respect has warned me that the words I publish on this Web Log will come back to haunt me on a witness chair.

I respectfully replied with the ever so trite, yet effective rejoinder, "Bring it on!"

Recently, I unearthed the archives of the Cretin Comment newspaper which I had alot to do with (humbly) in 1973-74.

I never realized how "conservative" I really was, relatively. Always thought it came out if College.

Not conservative enought to get the military promotions I deserved at the time (gosh I got called into the '"office" after every issue came off the press) but prescient beyond what was then my innocent understanding.

Babs Carlson, the outspoken ex of Minnesota Governor Arne Carlson spake often and thus on her talk radio show. "My name is in the book."

I feel the same way. If sharing my life experience can improve the life of one person, or at least temporarily cause some endorphins to be released and inspire, this blog will have proven its worth.


........Deleted on sage advice of expensive counsel......

If you snoozed, you losed. I suppose it's still out there in the ethernet. This is the part I couldn't help but leave in:

If I publish this, as it is only now a draft, I will be saying, BRING IT ON


Why do are Lefties so NEGATIVE? Worse, they cost the taxpayers alot of money to fight their assualts on commen sinse, desinsy, and the American Way? Case in point -- the billboard Nazis who are soaking the St Paul taxpayers for reparations to Clear Channel Communications. I don't give a hoot about billboards...do you? Well you had better, because you are not only paying for those nasty things by buying the advertized product, you pay taxes to defend the left-elite who make well-paying non-profit jobs for themselves to stir the pot. Jealous? U bet!


Friday, August 13, 2004

Life in Perspective

Hi All!

Sorry for the dearth of posts. I haven't been well and the creative well, such as it is, was/is pretty dry.

I have been very anxious about my upcoming initial court appearance. It is finally happening today. Had hoped that the prosecuter would come with an offer of a deal, but my guy says nothing is forthcoming - that he wants me to go go jail.

I have also been pining for my collectable car that I stand to lose which continues to rot in impoundment when I could have been cruising on these perfect days.

Last week I read about a guy who had a collector Pontiac GTO stolen from his garage. I looked up his number and spoke at length with his wife, comisserating over our losses. Ironically, her husband turned out to be Mayor of St Anthony Village, who's police had arrested me and seized my car for forfiture. Got the Mayor's number and tried to reach him but he was away.

This morning I learned that he died in a plane crash yesterday.

Kind of puts my own problems in perspective.

RIP Randy Hodson

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Lies or Statistics?

Hi All!

I suppose I am beating a shop-worn dead horse, but on first reading, I am often annoyed by pundits who throw out vague statistics without footnotes.

There be a local "activist" and general PITA, David Morris (cut 'n paste "david morris self reliance" into Google) who is a past master at the art of hurling unfounded, startling stats at the wall in hope that some of his BS might stick before it slides to the floor..

My local favorite columnist is Joe Soucheray. Pretty damned fair talk show host too. He is on hiatus which worries me. I know he'll stay on KSTP AM1500, but I wonder if he is bent on leaving the Pioneer Press.

Paul Light, Oliver Towne (nom de plumes, of course as was the old custom) Don Boxmeyer, Larry Millett and others have been the "voices of St Paul" to this incurable native romantic.

Cut to the chase.

The Last Columnist Standing. Laura Billings. I've heard that she's something of a mid-to-late-life cure for a St. Paul native and pretty fair columnist who was intentionally left out of the aforementioned list, as he is a journalistic traitor and now works for the enemy newspaper in Minneapolis. Nick Coleman Junior, if you're interested but I hope not.

Here are the incredulous "Stats" from today's Billings column, accessible from www.twincities.com

Caveat: The course of my life does not orbit the abortion issue. This is simply a challenge to prove cited stats and could challenge pundits of all stripes advocating all issues.

"The idea [of the 'I Had an Abortion' t-shirt sold by Planned Parenthood] was to help put a human face on a choice that one in three American women will have made before the age of 45" (italics mine).

Well that explains the population explosion ;-)

"54 percent of women having abortions used contraception during the month they got pregnant."

Were I Laura's editor (if she has one) I might have suggested "conceived" or "became pregnant" to describe this apparently frivolous life event, but shouldn't Trial Lawyers, led by John Edwards, or Mike Ciresi be devouring the nasty firms which push such risky and inefective products? E.I. Lilly, watch out!

"Some 60 percent of abortions are among women who have had one or more children already."

No Way. I just can't believe that. Prove it!

I'm sure today's column will "bring it on" as fervent pro and con groups storm the battlements of the Pioneer Press (www.twincities.com) editorial page.

Just wanted to fire from the gut, as I am wont to do. Helps to start waking at 6:00am without a debilitating hangover and scooping up the paper before my wife steals and stains it with coffee.

Note to Blogitorial Board -- should I pull this? Maybe a few readers will cut and paste it before it becomes a collectors item in the "Great Lost Wog Blog" compilation due out in about 20 years.''

Fear not, readers. A thoughtful post about a great person will appear soon, one of the many vignettes I plan to publish based on the true stories of the Kings and pawns I met in treatment.


Monday, August 09, 2004

Lyrical Interlude

Hi All!

It's one of those atypical Minnesota August days, all overcast, cold, spritzy and windy. Novemberish. All I can do is thank Global Warming for sparing my central air bill this year and to share some Ray Davies Kink's poetry, with apologies to the author for purloining his work which struck me as a reflection on weather and life.

Where did the spring go?
Where did the trees go?
Where did the sun go?
Where did the bluebirds fly?
Why did the rainbow turn into shadows?

Why am I cold now?
Why does my skin sag?
Why ain't my back straight?
Why do my feet ache?
Where did my youth go?
Where did my life go?

Remember walking in the rain,
And getting soaking wet,
Now I got rheumatic pains,
And I really do regret it.

Where did my teeth go?
Where did my muscles go?
Where did my shoulders go?
Where did my chest go?
When you were loving me,
You were just using me.
You would employ me,
You would destroy me.
Now all I've got are varicose veins.

Where did the spring go?
Where did my hormones go?
Where did my energy go?
Where did my go go?
Where did the pleasure go?
Where did my hair go?

Remember all those sleepless nights,
Making love by candlelight,
And every time you took my love,
You were shortening my life.

Where did my teeth go?
Where did my hair go?
Where did my shoulders go?
Where did my chest go?
Where did my hormones go?
Where did my go go?
Where did my energy go?
Where did my skin go?
Where did my muscles go?
Where did my liver go?
Where did my heart go?
Where did my bones go?

Thanks very much for visiting. Traffic is picking up and I really hope I am providing a useful service.


Wog's Puff Break

Hi All!

One of the curses of the internet is the frequent use of the word "loose" when one means to say "lose."

It is even more annoying to me than the ages old misuse of the word "anxious" when one means to say "eager."

I am anxious whenever I publish a post, as I fear what readers might make of my deep thinking, however, I am eager to be read by as many folks as possible.

I am sometimes a loose cannon and sometimes lose my temper.

For a perfect example, no less a respected author as Mitch Albom defiles the "L" word in the early part of his column today: http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0804/albom.html

Am also looking for someone in the Twin Cities to spend an hour with me to learn how to make this blog a bit more useful to me and my readers -- I want to at least enable feedback.


Sunday, August 08, 2004

Did I Pick Up or was it a Dream?

Hi All!

First of all, be sure to read Don Boxmeyer's piece in todays Pie-in-Ear Press (twincities.com). Talk about the miracle of modern medicine ---- and why the Social Security is doomed due to life expectancy not dreamed of even 20 years ago.

Since I entered treatment on July 12th, 2004 my physical and mental conditions have veered wildly. I have never really quite "lost it" but have come close enough to be scared.

One moment, I have to negotiate steps slowly, pulling myself up by the hand rail. The next, I can bound up, rail-free, like my kids.

One moment, my thoughts are focused. The next, I am recording a John Cage-like composition on 64 tracks.

Due to modern science, I am walking around with 3 Boston Scientific stents. Great?! I think the recent problems of that company involve their heart stents, not the transportal liver to stomach ones like I have.

Even after four hospitalizations due to uncontrolled internal bleeding and two Extreme Unctions (the Catholic sacrament of "So Long, Sucker and Good Luck") I remain immortal in my warped mind. How could God take me away from my adolescent kids who need me so badly for a few more years until they get to spread their wings?

Well, I had a really bad dream last night. I remember going to one of my favorite hiding places and discovering a half-empty 750ml of cheap brandy.

I tried to pour it out, but it was one of those trick bottomless cups or baby doll bottles that used to inspire wonder and amusement to we 60's kids.

The fortified elixer would properly dispense only if the gaping maw of a fresh, ice-filled glass was expectantly poised beneath. I poured generously and drank long and deep. Straight, mixed, mixed, straight. Found some Vermouth in the fridge for a Brandy Man, Green Gatorade is a nice complement as well. Cherry Coke, Sprite, Mello Yellow, even beer. Great Mixers, all, and frequently used in the past, not to mention Pepsi products, bottled water, chocolate milk, myriad Sam's Choice Walmart knock-off carbonated beverages. Walgreen's Energy Drink and not least, Wheaties with chocolate milk: Wog's "Breakfast of Champions". I even poured it on sponge cake.

I Woke up quite agitated and yearning for brandy almost beyond reason. But it was Sunday Morning. Sane enough not to drive to Wisconsin with no driver's license in an Isuzu Trooper sporting Scarlet Letter "whiskey plates", I frantically searched for the stash. No Petri to be found. Gosh, I was SURE I left it in the hanging folder between "Taxes" and "Bills to Pay."

Went upstairs to the fridge. A bit of vermouth lurked therein, but it would not be very good sans brandy. It belongs to my wife, and if I finish it she'll know I've slipped. Well, perhaps a splash over a bit of ice...NO!!!

I turned on the demon and told him to piss off. He sneered and skulked back to his corner.

One round for the Wog.

White-knuckled, I nervously read the papers and watched the political shows. Installed a stereo in my son's car. Watched Carl Eller give one hell of a Cosbyesque speech at his Hall of Fame induction. Demon persisted, I resisted.

Now it is on to Fab Ferns for a surprise 50th birthday party for my wife's older sister.

If any of you gentrifics who live down in old SelDale see a fat guy dressed in his Goodwill best sneaking off to the bar area for a beer and a round of NTN Trivia, say hi and send him back to the table full of boring relatives ;-))

I have a great doctor, the kind of person who could tell you that you have an hour to live with such earnest ambivalence that you wouldn't believe him.

Last Monday I asked him a pointed question. At what point is it determined that I need to get a liver transplant?

"Oh, about two years ago..."

Watch Carl Eller's speech if you can. I hope the newspapers print it. Good stuff. About time that aging black role models like Cosby and Eller are stepping up and saying what need be said. Got a kick out of Carl's daughter's name: Cinder :-)

Stay well, all.


Saturday, August 07, 2004

Jews for Wog

Hi All!

I'm gonna slip this post in until I can flesh out a profile of a new friend whom I met late in treatment.

This very interesting and very unfortunate fellow was moved to offer my name to his Rabbi for inclusion in a part of last week's Sabbath at his Synagogue called, and I hope I get this right, the "Mishaberach" a prayer for healing.

I was deeply touched, and even as a crotchety old skeptic I must say that my health DID improve last weekend.

500 Minneapolis Jews praying for a dyed-in wool St. Paul Catholic. What a COUNTRY!!!!

As aforementioned, when I left treatment I was shake'n all over and could barely climb a flight of stairs without needing to lie down.

I can now dart up and down our house's flight almost as quickly as my kids. And I'm gonna buy a bike I spotted at Goodwill to see if I can start getting around a bit. It's an old girl's bike with upright handlebars and a three speed tranny. Best of all it has a soft, comfy chair and is easy to mount and dismount..

With my luck, someone will have snatched it up by the time I return with a larger vehicle in which to haul it.

I don't know if the Mishaberach pleading carries over from week to week, but I've got my hopes high.



Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Wog's Puff Break

Hi All!

I aim to write every day, but sometimes I simply run low on inspiration.

So I have invented a "Wog's Puff Break" subject line so that faithful adherents can avoid my short "puff" pieces.

Today, I will offer an easy test. This might rub the wrong way, so let me preface by stating that it is offered as an irreverent bit of whimsy.

I am recruiting a "Blogitorial Oversight Committee" who may ask me to delete this, but how will I learn how to blog if not by pushing the envelope and accepting constructive criticism?

Read the following prayer and answer the simple quiz below.

God, grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the Courage to change the things I can, and the Wisdom to know the difference.

Pick from the following that which most applies to you.

1. Never heard it before

2. Sounds familiar

3. I think that's one of those AA things

4. I've prayed it a couple of times

5. I've prayed it many times

6. I pray it daily

7. I pray it all the time, even in my sleep


1. You lying sack.

2. You are not, and are not related to someone who has gone thru treatment

3. Blissfully ignorant

4. You lying sack. Once you've prayed it, you can't just stop at two. Lay's Potato Chips.

5. You know someone in treatment or are a veteran of treatment

6. You are in treatment, or are a seriously recovering person

7. You ought to find some other prayers -- you're addicted to Serenity!



Tuesday, August 03, 2004

And now, a Lyrical Interlude

Hi All!

Ray Davies is one of the greatest rock composers of all time. He has written several songs related to The Drink.

Here are the lyrics to one of my favorites:


Here's a story about a sinner,
He used to be a winner who enjoyed a life of prominence and position,
But the pressures at the office and his socialite engagements,
And his selfish wife's fanatical ambition,
It turned him to the booze,
And he got mixed up with a floosie
And she led him to a life of indecision.
The floosie made him spend his dough
She left him lying on Skid Row
A drunken lag in some Salvation Army Mission.
It's such a shame.

Oh demon alcohol,
Sad memories I can't recall,
Who thought I would say,
Damn it all, blow it all,
Oh demon alcohol,
Memories I can't recall,
Who thought I would fall a slave to demon alcohol.
Sad memories I can't recall,
Who thought I would fall a slave to demon alcohol.

Barley wine, pink gin,
He'd drink anything,
Port, pernod or tequila,
Rum, scotch, vodka on the rocks,
As long as all his troubles disappeared.
But he messed up his life and beat up his wife,
And the floosie's gone and found another sucker
She's gonna turn him on to drink
She's gonna lead him to the brink
And when his money's gone,
She'll leave him in the gutter,
It's such a shame.

Oh demon alcohol,
Sad memories I can't recall,
Who thought I would say,
Damn it all and blow it all,

Oh demon alcohol,
Sad memories I can't recall,

Who thought I would fall,
A slave to demon alcohol.

And now, for another Ray Davies lyric which I much prefer nowadays:


You go down the pub
You wear make up
And old dad's trousers
Why don't you tidy up
You talk like a docker but you act like a queer
You drink champagne then complain it's too dear
You try so hard not to follow any trends
Then you cry in your beer and say you've got no friends
But is it any wonder that you've got no friends
But it's not the make up
Or the way you dress
It's not your appearance, that they all detest
It's not your manners, that you gotta improve
ooooo--it's your attitude.

Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude
Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude

Take off your head phones
Hear what's going on
You can't live in a time zone
You've gotta move on
But before you get there
There's one thing you've gotta do
Oh change your attitude
It's your attitude
It's your attitude

Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude
Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude

The '80s are here, I know 'cos I'm staring right at them
But you're still waiting for 1960 to happen

You might have the illness, but you've got the cure
You've got the answer, you will endure
You're the only person that's gonna pull you through
Ooh, with your attitude

Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude
Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude

You gotta learn to be positive, it's your only chance
You mustn't be so defensive, you gotta join in the dance
But it isn't your dancing that you've gotta improve
Ooh, it's your attitude.

Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude
Attitude, Oo Oo Oo
Your attitude

It's all in the music
It's all in your brain
You've used all the old licks
Now it's all gotta change.
Change your attitude
It's your attitude


Demon Alcoholism - The Great Equalizer

Hi All!

The greatest single impression I got from my three weeks in treatment was how incredibly democratic the disease of alcoholism is. My fellow patients ran a gamut of social, economic, religious, political, age, gender, race and mental health backgrounds. One would be hard pressed to assemble a more "diverse" sampling of Americans.

Yet the evil thing that brought us together is the demon of addiction. Mostly alcohol, but mood altering substances as well. It has taken me a long time to accept this fact:

Alcoholism is a bio-chemical, bio-physical, mental and social disease of the most destructive type. Some are born with it, most are not.

It is a bad habit for many heavy, habitual drinkers who are NOT suffering from the disease. Those are the lucky few who can quit by the force of will. Not so for we true alcoholics.

I am 48-years old. I took my first drink at 16. My demon has been my best pal for 24 years - 2/3 of my life. My best pal will never be satisfied until it takes my life. It has nearly succeeded several times. Along the way, it has devoured almost everything good in my life. Some pal.

The demon took a 21-day vacation of its own while I spent the time at Fairview Riverside. I left fully understanding that it would be back as soon as the door shut behind me. And boy was it! Despite the mental therapy, my boyishly health took a dive during treatment. I developed uncontrollable shaking and muscle jerks. Bit my tongue clear thru and could barely eat or drink -- no matter how I tried to favor the left side of my mouth, the slightest irritant would find it's way into the bloody chasm on the right side. I had poor equilibrium, and took a couple of falls with lucky landings. I had zero energy and could barely stay awake thru the days. Yet I slept half-consciously, fretfully and violently.

Fortunately, I had rid the house of every last stash before I left for treatment, so was greeted by empty hiding places when I arrived home. I am pretty sure I would have drained any remaining drop had I not taken precautions. I can't drive and the nearest jar store is outside of my limited walking distance, so now, day 5 at home, I am winning the daily battle. Not that the demon isn't swirling around in my thoughts almost constantly -- awake or asleep.

The health is somewhat coming back. Tongue almost healed, less jerks and shakes, better sleep.

Lest you are starting to sigh that here comes yet another hair shirt-wearing sad sack recovering addict's epic sob story, fear not.

As I previously warned, this blog will be devoted to stories from treatment. Meant to be therapeutic for me, entertaining for you. I am going to profile some of the fascinating people I met and share some of their stories, while needing to hold the line against breaching confidentiality.

The stories are meant to be entertaining, not preachy or judgmental. I just think that addicts in treatment with the guard down are the smartest, most sensitive and above all, FUNNY people one could ever meet.

As to the title of today's post, I avoid the cliche' of "Demon Alcohol" (the theme of a favorite Kinks song of mine). Alcohol ain't no demon. The demon is the addiction.

I hope you bear with me and spread the word if you enjoy what you read in the coming days.

If you are new to the Wog's Blog, please mine the archives. I daresay their is good stuff to be unearthed back when readership was nil.


Sunday, August 01, 2004

Back from the Desert after 21 days

Hi All!

Christ could handle 40 days, but things move a bit faster now. I ain't no Christ so I could claim to have had a harder experience. Of course, He was working to save all mankind and I was only working on me so, props to J.C. for showing that old Demon what's for, as that is what I need to tell my own personal Demon as well.

I will spend the next days describing my experience at the Fairview Medical Center inpatient program. formerly known as St. Mary's.

I need to peel off the onion in layers, and since I just got out today I need to gather my voluminous thoughts and figure out how to parse them out in digestible bits.

Since I've written down some stuff, I will try to pique your interest with my "Graduating Speech" delivered to the current 60-odd member group:

How to say goodbye?

When I left treatment here seven years ago, I would have screamed, 'So long, Suckas!'

But dammit, something happened this time. No shit.

This time I came in willingly, hopefully, desperately.

I wheeled in a shopping cart full of incentives, not the least of which is my doctor's prognosis of "End Stage cirrhosis" which means that if I can live through a handful of sober months, I MAY get on a liver transplant list which, if I'm lucky to live long enough after that, will go thru a fucking bitch of an operation followed by two years of painful, icky, iffy "recovery".

So, I was determined to accept this treatment for whatever I could suck out of it, and soldiered on through the good and the bad. Do you know what? Things clicked!

I fell in with a group blessed with incredible Karma. In our sessions, I peeled off so many layers of my personal onion that I could get grown men to cry just by sitting in the same room with me.

I began to feel that one of my strongest defenses, my cold, sarcastic, sardonic and very pointed wit was beginning to morph into warm, smarmy touchy-feelingness.

It didn't quite go that far, but if you pass me in the hall, don't come TOO close. I could go TF at any time, and then you would spend the rest of the day reeking of onion.

Everyone takes this chance to say goodbye and thank you to the counselors and fellow inmates and wish all the best as they are cast back into the roiling seas of the real world.

I would try something different.

Today, with apologies to Lennon and McCartney, let me leave for now with this thought:

You say goodbye to this recovering friend, but I say, HELLO!... HELLO HELLO!!

We're all on this ship together. 21-days don't mean shit. Let's stick together through aftercare and beyond.

Best of success to us all. Stomp on that demon and enjoy your new life. Give ourselves a great big hand!