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diatribesends & odd

Chasing My Father

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Lately I’ve been chasing my father all over Hell – figuratively speaking. I don’t expect to catch him; he died seven years ago, taking with him some secrets I wish I could have asked him about, and others that I know I couldn’t have. He left behind some intriguing clues about himself, but remained something of a mystery to the end. [Read more →]

bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: Totally devoid of clever observations

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I must apologize to my legions of loyal reader (hi Jeff!). Due to some unforseen circumstances, I am unable to present my usual brilliant commentary in this space today. I promise to return next week with something staggeringly witty, but for now, I will just share my list of good and bad stories of the week with minimal narration.  Thanks for your understanding. [Read more →]

art & entertainmentends & odd

Excerpts from the Zombie Kama Sutra— a Halloween exclusive

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In honor of Halloween, below is an excerpt from the Zombie Kama Sutra, which is sort of like the regular Kama Sutra that we living people all know and love, except that it’s aimed at the Undead. This excerpt features some highly disturbing and erotic images of zombie sexual positions. Please stop reading if the thought of such matter disturbs you.

IN the beginning, the Lord of Beings created men and women, and prescribed therefore about one million rules by which those men and women must necessarily regulate their living existence. Yet, these rules have not applied to the undead. For too long have these wayward, shambling, unholy creatures attempted to engage the acts of courtship, embracing, unions, seduction, and etc.

Death should not be used as an excuse for chaos.

To that end are written these more than one thousand chapters, intended as a guide to those who have risen from the grave by whatever means, be it metaphysical, mystical, biological, or extraterrestrial. These important “rules to be dead by” shall provide to the Zombie the proper knowledge in regards to conducting oneself in all manner of intimate relations. [Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythingrecipes & food

Top ten least popular Halloween candies

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10. Good N’ Grunty

9. Stutterfinger

8. Gecko Wafers

7. Boston Baked Limabeans

6. N&Ns

5. Soy Milky Way

4. Bengali Rancher

3. Baby Ruth Buzzi

2. Cadbury Creme Eggs and Ham

1. Dixie Chicks Pixy Stix

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

living poetry

Tyranny of the head that stifles…

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When Will My Time Come–  Kerry sunset

Michael Higgins


(President Elect of Ireland)

When will my time come for scenery
And will it be too late?
After all
Decades ago I was never able
To get excited
About filling the lungs with ozone
On Salthill Prom.

And when the strangers
To whom I gave a lift
Spoke to me of the extraordinary
Light in the Western sky;
I often missed its changes.
And, later, when words were required
To intervene at the opening of Art Exhibitions,
It was not the same.

What is this tyranny of head that stifles
The eyes, the senses,
All play on the strings of the heart.

And, if there is a healing,
It is in the depth of a silence,
Whose plumbed depths require
A journey through realms of pain
That must be faced alone.
The hero, setting out,
Will meet an ally at a crucial moment.
But the journey home
Is mostly alone.

When my time comes
I will have made my journey
And through all my senses will explode
The evidence of light
And air and water, fire and earth.

I live for that moment.


Well, it’s interesting. We face the prospect of more of the same, or the insane, or a pizza salesman. The Irish get a poet. Granted, the presidency of Ireland is less the powerful spot held by DeValera for decades, from the end of the civil war to the 60s and more an elected version of the British Monarchy. He presides, and he then makes state visits.

But, given a choice between a business man best known for being one of the assholes on Dragons Den or the former Chief of Staff of the IRA, the Irish chose a part-time politician and full-time Irish poet. While not Seamus Healy, Michael Higgins like Louis McNeice and himself brings something worthwhile to the whole mess. And for that, perhaps we should look again to the Irish and possibly the Icelanders to preserve civilization after the glance up the skirts of capitalism we’ve endured the last few years in particular and decades in general. The women have taken over Iceland and the poets are taking over Ireland. Not a lot to say…for us.

I have developed a habit as I walk into the my office in the morning of flipping on the computer and then playing the guitar for a bit. While I seem to be finding myself listening to a lot of Celtic revival stuff of late, I started this morning with Boolavouge and then The Rising of the Moon. We’ll see…Oh, and Feck is a slightly restrained version of fuck…in case you were wondering.


race & cultureterror & war

Defending the last ditch

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Where there is suspicion there is hope. Anything less than defiantly blind credulity must be taken as something of a triumph, especially amongst the young. If you want to see suspicion in all its varied glory make this a habit: whenever you meet a young jew (and it comes up) ask, are you a Zionist Jew or an Anti-Zionist Jew? If immediate suspicion is in the jewish character it seems to have been mostly boiled out of the semite undergrad. Mostly, as with all questions these days, you will receive the quizzical expression of a kitten nursing a cigarette. They are not used to new questions, these pupae, without getting the answers in advance, and presume you have begun speaking a foreign language. Possibly fictional. For some reason the usual method of fence straddling is likewise not employed. It is that expression, Zionist. They know they have heard it and it is not good. “But it does seem to have something to do with jews, which I am,” so they are at least hesitant to join in the hoots, the damnation of the bankers, the presumption of their jewishness, the denunciation of Israel and the perpetual explanations of how the jews are at the root of it all.

Given the givens of our day, as I said, this is triumphal and all opportunities must be explored. [Read more →]

politics & government

Last minute Halloween costume ideas

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books & writing

Lisa reads The Night Eternal by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan

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Oh, was I excited to get this book! I loved the first book in the series, The Strain — recommended it to everyone who was tired of sparkly vampires. The Fall was a little less successful (often the case with the middle book in a series), but still a very good read. I have been anxiously awaiting the final installment, in part because I figure the movie can’t be far behind.

The Night Eternal begins two years after The Fall ends. The Master has orchestrated the end of the human race and instituted a new vampire world order. There are still humans around; after all, the vampires could not survive without them; but most of them are completely subjugated. The size of the vampire population is closely controlled, so that it does not outstrip the available humans, and some of the surviving humans are similarly monitored. (Let’s just say that having B-positive blood is not a good thing.) The Master has used his psychic connection to the vampires he created to control the human population, which lives in nearly perpetual darkness thanks to the nuclear holocaust of the last book.

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Michael Cade's audio files

Audio files: My favorite fan-made YouTube videos

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We’re all familiar with the genius of YouTube; how it lets the unknown masses contribute to pop culture as freely and often as they’d like. But lately I’ve taken a particular shine to YouTube’s vast array of fan-made music videos (i.e. fan-chosen footage splattered onto musicians’ songs).

A few such gems recently caught my attention.

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The New Indentures

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They are enthusiastically for elimination, these chilly, sodden folk who gather at my doorstep. Eliminate debt, eliminate taxes, eliminate property, eliminate poverty, eliminate wealth and the wealthy too and once in a while, publicly eliminate on the sidewalk. Who claims they lack coherence? They Occupy Wall Street and Main Street, meaning they reside there; sleeping rough, eating roughage and are roughly handled, so they complain, by the authorities, the media, the neighbors, business, academe and above all by harsh and increasingly cold Reality. I depart from most of the critics of the Occupiers however. No, their problems are not strictly speaking in their heads. There is, actually, an underlying, unifying rationality among the commies, hippies, dippies and loons. Finally polling has investigated our modern Bonus Marchers and found a diagnosable malady; not just debt but student debt. [Read more →]

politics & government

Up with down twinkles

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Have you ever down twinkled?

Do you even know what down twinkling is, you boar-faced, capitalist gasbag?

I bet not! Please allow me to me explain then.

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artistic unknowns by Chris Matarazzoreligion & philosophy

Holding the line: Putting happiness before art

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I’ve been writing this column for over a year now.  The reason it is called “Artistic Unknowns” is because my original idea was to focus on the issues surrounding being an unknown artist, yet one who soldiers on in art despite obscurity — an artist like yours truly: busy in a professional and personal artistic context, despite the realities and responsibilities of living everyday life. Sure, the column has branched off into my opinions about the nature of art (some which have been well-received, some, not so much) but the recurring theme has always been folks like me — the busy, if publically unknown, artist. I’ve tried to “write what I know.” [Read more →]

sciencethat's what he said, by Frank Wilson

Neutrinos and a flock of pigeons

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Have you heard the latest neutrino jokes?

Here’s one:


Knock, knock.

And here’s another:

“We don’t allow faster-than-light neutrinos in here,” said the bartender.

A neutrino walks into a bar.

Don’t get them? Well, in a Wall Street Journal column, physicist Michio Kaku put it this way: [Read more →]

art & entertainmentmovies

I blame The Lion King

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Recent demonstrations by the disaffecteds occupying Wall Street and calling themselves the 99%, coming as they have on the proverbial heels of another populist revolt, the TEA Party, suggest that one thing is clear: people on the left and the right have had it with the status quo in Washington D.C…

…or have they?

Not likely…and I blame The Lion King. [

bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: Albert Pujols shows us his best and his worst

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Baseball fans are fortunate to be witnessing one of the all-time great careers right now. We hear all the time about so many great players from the past, such as Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Ted Williams, and Mickey Mantle. Legendary players who many of us have only heard about but never got to watch play. History is likely to put Albert Pujols into that category, if the first eleven years of his career are any indication. There would appear to be nothing he can’t do. He is the best hitter in the game, is a tremendous fielder, and he makes the St. Louis Cardinals whole lineup better. He is currently attempting to lead his team to a World Series title. As great as he is, there is a bit of baggage there as well. This week, we got to see the best and the worst of Albert Pujols, all within the space of a couple of days. [Read more →]

Bob Sullivan's top ten everythinghealth & medical

Top ten signs you’ve gotten a bad flu shot

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10. You saw the nurse filling the syringe with Diet Snapple

9. It makes you so delirious, you seriously start considering voting for Michele Bachmann

8. It has a 100 percent guarantee from Dr. Kevorkian

7. It’s FDA approval is from the Florida Dental Association

6. After injecting you, the doctor offers to sell you the antidote for another hundred bucks

5. The “clinic” is in the backseat of a ’54 Chevy

4. You notice the diploma on the doctor’s office wall is from Hamburger U.

3. Right after getting it, you start shaking like Rick Perry at an NAACP rally

2. You got the shot from a door-to-door grifter

1. The label claims it’s also effective against Cooties

Bob Sullivan’s Top Ten Everything appears every Monday.

moneypolitics & government

Journal publishes obvious truth; repudiation by Journal editorial page due Tuesday

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Trashing_the_neighborhoodReading the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page for insight into the economy, business or economics in general — or just about anything else except the arcane study of the Right Wing elite and where Murdoch’s head is at today — is a very strange exercise. It’s kind of like looking at a symposium on race relations and gender equitality chaired by an intern from World Net Daily where the participants are Louis Ferdinand Celine, Ian Paisley,  John Hagee, Michelle Bachmann, the Grand Mufti of Teheran, Dennis Duke and Clarence Thomas. They may have a lot to say, but it will be either ignorant or just plain batshit crazy, with a tinge of duplicity and lies. Which they all believe. [Read more →]

travel & foreign landstrusted media & news

Mr. Gorbachev goes to Mexico

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Like many children of the Cold War, I grew up anxious about Nuclear Armageddon, so when Gorbachev eased relations between the USSR and the West I was grateful. For many years I viewed him as a hero, pure and simple. It was not until I moved to Russia that I realized his reforms had been intended to strengthen the USSR, not destroy it.


Gorbachev had a rough ride in his homeland in the 1990s, where he was almost universally despised. These days he appears to have settled into the role of Russia’s Jimmy Carter: well- meaning, not quite forgiven, but no threat. [Read more →]

family & parenting

Never stare up the stairs, just step up the steps

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When I was in second grade, I was enrolled in CCD at our church. The point of this venture was to instill me with a more fundamental knowledge of my/my parent’s faith — to help me realize more fully what it meant to believe in God, and what it meant to be Catholic. There was a textbook, with pastel paintings of Jesus and his disciples, portraying his efforts to help the sick and feed the poor. There were tests — memorizing the Commandments and reciting the Our Father. I needed to learn these things to make my first Holy Communion, to advance in my faith. The weight of the spiritual world was essentially resting on my shoulders, being this was the first rite of Christian passage that I actively was participating in.

But none of that mattered. The fear and anxiety of the tests and the practicing and the ultimatums (“If you don’t learn this, you won’t be able to get Communion,” which loosely translated into “You won’t be able to wear a pretty white dress and have your own special party”) completely paled in comparison to my true source of anxiety every Sunday: the open staircase that led to our classroom. [Read more →]

on the lawpolitics & government

Candidate Obama vs. President Obama on Libya

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