Open Thread November

By Ace Korakes

He was not designed to wipe tables with a cloth; it was hard for him to avoid cleaning them with his belly. In fact, he could’ve velcro’d a handiwipe to the lower slopes between navel and penis and cleaned the tables with that. You couldn’t help watching him—my God, the lighting in those offramp McDonalds is bright enough for a surgery theater—and you almost expected a laughtrack to follow him around as his belly sloshed over the formica table tops. Actually, though, the soundtrack was a trashy 70s standard, “How looo-ong…has this bin goin’ on?” One of those moments that seem, as the grad students used to say, “overdetermined.” As in, I get it, I get it already, leave me alone, leave that poor bastard alone. The one miserable consolation of the losers used to be that they stayed lean. Now they’re the ones who get fat, another gloating stat I saw recently. What next, Baron Harkonnen floating in to pull that fat busboy’s heart plug to general applause?

134 Replies to “Open Thread November”

  1. good dolan. it reminds me that i should go look at exiled once in a while. i’m wondering where “ace karakes” comes from.

  2. speaking of losers, here’s an interesting stat that i read recently on the net: regarding recent unemployment, macdonald’s had something like 60,000+ jobs advertised. they got over 1 million applicants. that is about a 6% acceptance level. harvard university has a 7% acceptance rate these days, meaning it is easier to get into harvard than it is to get a job flipping burgers at mickey-Ds, who used to take anyone with a heartbeat.

  3. and speaking of numbers, what are your plans for this Friday, Veteran’s Day,


    11/11/11. I’m celebrating with an early lunch, at 11 past 11.


    going out for Mayan food at the Binary cafe.

  4. Doom, did you hear how many people McDonald’s let go right during or before their 4/19/11 mass hiring? I heard it was basically a wash – they let that many people go, and brought in that many new replacements.
    unless perhaps tens of thousands of new McD’s restaurants opened? (didn’t think so)

  5. Shouldn’t the Mayan lunch wait for 12/12/12?

    And the War against the War on Christmas begins. How many Tea Party members will fall with honor this year? How many will get splinters seceratly chopping the last of the trees down for Christmas freedumb? How many toxic wallmart crap will thrown to the garbage can altar?

    Damn it!!! its my right to have no future! To say other wise would make me a socialist!

  6. Good news the World AKA the USofA saved 15 cents today and the war on christmas’s first battle victory goes to the idiots

  7. Doom, the new shoes went over just fine at work, but possibly that’s only because the dress code didn’t cover heel height. I’ll wait to see if HR corrects this before moving on to platforms.

  8. opps I thought it was Puerto Rico according to the local news last night. Darn local news is wrong once again.

  9. i didn’t know anywhere else on the planet had waves as big or bigger than jaws. needless to say, those sets are unforgiving. wouldn’t want that jet ski to have engine problems or run out of gas at the wrong time.

    must be an amazing ride.

  10. Not sure OSHA would approve of the shoes .. our HR lady wasn’t around today so I didn’t get to find out. She’s normally pretty on top of that stuff.

  11. they were going to pipe the tar sands sincrude all the way to the Gulf to refine it. but of course, then it can be loaded onto tankers and sold to the highest bidder, anywhere. so who’s to say american 99% were going to get it anyway?

    maybe we’d get the occasional spills from pipeline leaks, or could get some free by sabotage. my guess is the oil was going to china anyway, so why not make the canuks selling it take the environmental hits to their own sod?

  12. That pipeline should be built just like the hundreds in the country that are already moving crude oil and you rarely hear about. As far as environmental threats go, pipelines are pretty far down the list. Way down the list. If people want to do something about oil pollution and global warming they should look at their consumption and use less, instead of getting all bent out of shape over a pipeline. The Administartion’s line on this is that the project proponent need to realign the proposed route to avoid environmentally sensitive lands in Nebraska. Thats BS. This is all about punting on a controvercial decision (until after the election).

  13. After oil from a ruptured pipeline leaked into the Yellowstone River in Eastern Montana recently, damaging a world famous trout fishery and tourist draw, a lot of folks eyes got opened to the dangers of oil pipeline leaks and the callousness of the oil companies. I expect there will be strong opposition to the pipeline in Montana, and rightfully so.

  14. also, it’s a big fucking deal if they propose to place that pipeline across your family’s farm/ranch land. no amount of money will offset the impact of one of those big pipes across your family’s land. that’s what a lot of folks in east texas have been harping out, and that’s why it’s so unpopular.

    the trans-alaska oil pipeline would have been even moron unpopular than it was except the carabou and elk have such weak lobbies to speak for them against the big oil interests and money. hey, but they did manage to get a few overpasses and underpasses made for them.

  15. Agriculture, logging and roads have probably destroyed a million times more trout stream habitat than the few crude oil pipeline ruptures that have happened. I don’t hear Daryl Hannah or anyone complaining about that.

  16. You can’t plant a tree or build a structure over a crude oil pipeline. Other than that I don’t know what impacts are so burdensome to a landowner. Cropland is generally just as productive if restoration is done right. I would agree pipelines in mountainous terrain and wetlands can be a problem, other than that its doable, and less of a problem than most of the other shit people are doing to the lands and waters. Blaming the crude oil pipeline for environmental problems is like blaming the gun for a murder.

  17. agreed, habitat degredation is numero uno. it all started with that first planted garden, i guess in response to too many hunters. somethings there already got evicted/killed to make space for that garden.

    the only solution is less people doing less, which i think is coming along down the pike, whether we like it or not.

  18. yeah, it’s ok to plant a wheat field, or an orchard or a vineyard, or a tomatoe field, for that matter, and kill everything that might get in the way. but a fucking pipeline?

  19. Daryl Hannah acutally has done a lot of protesting and such against logging roads. Shes a defacto Earth First member.

    The great plage is comming. Big Pharma is going to its best to help. They have through thier govenment lobbing group the FDA have rewritten the vitamin rules basiclly banning all vitamins and herbel remedies unless the FDA aproves them. Thus putting several thousands of people out of work, me included. And the next swine flu the only people who can save you are Big pharma who the CDC admitted this year that the flu shots are only 30% successful. But you should still get them. Which is probably why most are free this year.

  20. Yes I would call lands environmentally sensitive if they were areas of aquifer recharge and/or had soils/geologic conditions that made the underlying aquifer vulnerable to surface activities. Then again, what they are doing on the surface is growing a lot of corn and the Ogalalla aquifer is important for that. That’s why they are depleting the hell out of that aquifer anyway and it takes a lot of oil to do it. What are we so desperately trying to save? Tigers run around the tree chasing their tail and turn into butter.

  21. The Ogalalla aquifer is a fossil water storage body left over from the last glacial period. It formed, like the Great Lakes, when glacial melt waters formed during the retreat that started about 10,000 to 12,000 years ago. Present climate does not recharge the Ogalalla, at least not nearly enough to sustain it against mining, which is what American farmers do when growing corn or raising cattle with it. They need moron oil energy to continue this mining, as the water tables drop. It’s similar to modern oil production, lowering the ERoEI. India is having similar water mining problems.

    Another interesting legacy of the past glacial period(s) are the vast cold deep ocean waters, around 4 degrees C in most places. It acts like a giant heat sink for global warming. If the planet warms to the point that the heat sink is gone, then we will be facing a Mesozoic climate again, except we are not as adaptable as those crafty dinosaurs, which could only be nearly totally eliminated by a large asteroid impact.

  22. BTW, went to hear Richard Heinberg give a talk last night. I chatted with him for a bit and got a signed copy of his latest book, The End of Growth. He told the audience at UH that Hawaii is especially vulnerable to the coming shocks at the end of growth, and that we need to do much better than import 85% of our food supply. No controversy with his audience there.

    He also said that students should study topics that will fit into the new paradygm, like farming, and not go into debt for a college education, especially to get worthless degrees in out-of-date areas such as marketing. He is an advocate for a debt jubilee, starting with student loan debts, of local money exchange as much as possible, and of the Transition Town movement.

    He is a very nice guy, humble, knows his topic, with a witty sense of humor. We talked about King Hubbert a bit.

  23. oh, and during the Q&A, Heinberg was asked how the present system can be fixed. He replied that those in power changed the rules to serve themselves, and the only way to wrest power from them is “in the streets”, implying revolution, perhaps violent overthrow. He was very logical about it.

  24. …for Dave… meant to post this way back upthread in response to your dancing comment. (Thot you’d appreciate Anne Hathaway more than the the squeaky-voiced originator Leo Thayer)…

    “…Tigers run around the tree chasing their tail and turn into butter…”

    @Bif… OMG, Little Black Sambo!!! When I was very little, we had a black cocker spaniel named Sambo (very PI family) who was my best buddy. We were apparently found out on top of the kitchen table gorging on cocktail onions together.

  25. EE, good grief, did the family have a black iron jockey in the front yard? Did y’all go to Sambo’s restaurant for breakfast or lunch? I suppose you also enjoyed old reruns of Amos n’ Andy on daytime TV?

  26. EE, because it was tigers that turned into butter I thought maybe the original Sambo was Indian or Paki. In the same genre there was Seven Chinese Brothers. Both books traumatized me as a child.

  27. uuum, water pocket polo?

    i really miss the humor of those old amos n’ andy tv shows, the kingfish’s many misadventures. they were on radio before that, according to my mom. too bad they got so non-pc.

    bif, i think you’re correct about those stories involving an indian or paki sambo. not sure about the origin of “little black sambo”, as all indians are usually dark skinned.

  28. “The great plage is comming. Big Pharma is going to its best to help.”

    Get ’em on a “health” plan, get ’em on meds, Feed ’em junk food. The great plague is ongoing.

  29. Get ‘em on a “health” plan, get ‘em on meds, Feed ‘em junk food. The great plague is ongoing.

    death on the installment plan, kinda like being married. we need something much quicker, with lot’s of pain, bile, and blood, i’d say.

  30. football coaches and priests in the same club? who woulda thunk? god bless them little bald wieners, i’d say.

  31. All this talk of sugar and viewing champion weight lifting videos has got my stomach growling. Think I’ll go get one of those tasty Angus burgers and a big choco shake at Mickey Dee’s.

  32. “Grautr” wrote:
    > “Is free will an illusion? Some leading scientists think so.
    > For instance, in 2002 the psychologist Daniel Wegner wrote,
    > “It seems we are agents. It seems we cause what we do…
    > It is sobering and ultimately accurate to call all this an
    > illusion.” More recently, the neuroscientist Patrick Haggard
    > declared, “We certainly don’t have free will. Not in the sense
    > we think.” And in June, the neuroscientist Sam Harris claimed,
    > “You seem to be an agent acting of your own free will.
    > The problem, however, is that this point of view cannot be
    > reconciled with what we know about the human brain.”

    It’s worth visiting the NYT page cited here to skim through the 314 reader comments posted.

    Good stuff and bad, but not one person admitted to having changed their mind about the subject matter by the article.


  33. people say: “i changed my mind.” wrong: something prompted a change in brain configuration. no different than getting a hard dick, or not. the right stimulation will produce a hare dick, if the plumbing is in proper working order.

  34. “Plains of Marathon.”

    I just read in some new book about those battles that the story about a messenger running 26 miles is bullshit. That the Greeks had a relay system in place just for these occasions.

  35. Bif, how many cases of SPAM or MREs could you have purchased for the price tag on that painting?

    My father, who was a young man in the Depression, used to say silly things like “you can’t eat a view”.

  36. we have some fine art in our house, almost all are prints. one of my aunts-in-law was asking if they were originals, whereupon i told her the location of several of the Gaugans, “that one’s at the Met in NY, that one’s in The Hermitage in St. Petersburg, that one’s in the Museé de Orsay in Paris, etc.” until she got my drift that we ain’t Bill & Melinda, but we do like art.

  37. Uh, oh…. as long as it’s not Elvis in dayglo on black velvet, you’re OK by me, Bif. Decades ago, my sister gave me a “Reader’s Digest Collection of Famous Paintings”–which I still have in my possession–and in it was John Constable’s “Wivenhoe Park.”

    I finally got to see it for the first time in 2007 at the National Gallery along with his giant plein air canvases. transcendental.

  38. EE, what de hell, you think we speed readers, or wot?

    yeah, Phoenix is sooooo dooooomed, it makes LA look greenfields. we stayed there a few years back. the resort had those water misters placed all over outdoors, to try to cool the tourists down and inject some humidity into the desert air. without their fossil-fueled, 24-7 AC that city will shrivel and sink back into the dry lake bed it once was.

  39. Funny LA was once all green fields.

    LA is a conundrum thats for sure. One of few cities which could die out completely and then many out of towners survivors would flock too. The weather is great the water availbilty not so much.

  40. “Elvis in dayglo on black velvet”

    What about a full-sized reclining nude of Moms Mabley – on black velvet?

  41. As a former long-time resident of the Valley of the Sun, I concur. For the longest time Phoenix put off building more highways and expanding existing ones, but once they put their mind to it, they showed no mercy.

  42. Early this morning I scored a bushel of acorn squash for only $10. I’m guessing there’s about 20 of them in a bushel. Things are looking up.

  43. Yeah, the Mexican lady is washing the white lady on a lion head rug. Woah, the stories that rug could tell. Its a big painting too, 5ft x 7ft, so the two characters are nearly life-size. Dot’s Saloon must have been big with high ceilings. Maybe the woman in the painting is Dot. Sort of like the high priced Miss Kitty turned madame and saloon proprietor. How else would she get a rug like that. The painting definitely has some value. Worth a thousand words at least. Its pretty banged up though, I’d give $500 for it but that wouldn’t be enough.

  44. There are old bars in small, out-of-the-way towns in Nevada, like Caliente, that still have paintings like that one in them. Not sure if they were originals, but they probably were, as color prints that big were/are expensive and a fairly recent technology. The old, massive bars in them are impressive, also.

  45. @EE – thanks on the shoes :) sorry I wasn’t here recently.

    I have worn many tall shoes before, but those ones messed with my walk like few others. I basically wore them Thurs, Fri, Mon & Tues at work (office job) and by the 4th day was really feeling it. Just to get anywhere on time required a lot more hip work than before, and some of the muscles had to work overtime – really felt it along the outside of the leg. Probably wearing them too much of the time is not a good idea.

  46. Bif – re your comment about buying a painting at auction – craziness is all relative.

    Will you get some use out of it?
    Can you flip it and make money?
    Can you sell it later if you want?
    Do you just like it?
    If yes to any of the above, congrats, you probably did the right thing.

    There are all kinds of good crazy out there. Just look at Dave’s mad googling skillz.

  47. Nudge, thanks, I just liked it. I guess I could sell it but that would probably be something I wouldn’t get around to.

    The painting from Dot’s saloon has me thinking I need a Victorian nude above the fireplace mantle. It would go really good with the glow of my whale oil lamps.

  48. ” .. reduce your dependence on those greedy electrical companies .. ” Let’s not send this Dale’s way, please .. it’s even more out there than the compressed-air cars he insisted would be the next big thing.

  49. yeah, for some reason she reminds me of octomom. only ocotomom had a real doctor implant her with some bunch of bullshit, or something like that.

  50. After skimming through JHK post this week, one has to wonder. Is JHK an investor in a certain hedgefund

    Even blackswans can turn a profit.

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