Thursday, October 09, 2008

Rock Lobster

Have any other Gen-Xers or whatever the hell people between their early thirties and early forties are called now been thinking of the song that's been playing in my head this week? The B-52s, "Rock Lobster." Ends with Fred Schneider intoning "Down, down, doooowwwwn." I keep hoping the Dow has hit the cellar. I know everyone is. I'm nervous as hell and not sleeping. I don't see how either Obama or McCain can help it. I do think that whoever wins, an end to this election will help a lot. You haven't heard any of these "experts" say that? Well, right now, I think my guess is as good as theirs.

Knock on wood, L'Ailee and I haven't been hurting that bad, except our 401(k)s are depleted at the moment. We still have our jobs. I'm still, I'm pretty sure, going to Florida to celebrate Samhain with my former coven. We're seeing a lot of hurt around us, though. L'Ailee has brought a unique motivator back to her martial arts classes--dressing up practice dummies in suits from Goodwill and putting masks representing the people who have pissed her students off onto them, even if some are just black and white paper printouts. Bam, Barack! Stay down, McCain! Take that, former CEO! How you like that, Henry Paulson? We haven't been spending very much, at least not by our standards. Maybe that's all to the good, but we wish people with more power and money than ourselves would do the same. We feel this Sword of Damocles over us. Hell, all of New York City feels it! But I've heard from my friends in Florida that the pressure's there, too.

And then there is Mike Bloomberg doing something even Giuliani could be persuaded to stop: trying for a third term. Great, just great. Here, Mike, have these civil liberties, I wasn't using them anyway.

So that's why I haven't been blogging, and why I even passed up the opportunity to crow over the beautiful and talented Tony Stewart's win at Talladega. (Finally a win this season! Finally a win for him at 'Dega! To hell with that whiny Regan Smith!) It's not because I'm mad at anybody. Not because I lost my job. Not because of Patrick, the insane spamming asshole who caused me to start moderating my comments. I just haven't felt like there's anything I can say. I mean, I'm feeling a lot, but it's what most everyone else is feeling, and what does it help to add my bit to the mix? I'm sorry I've alarmed people, and thanks to those of you who checked up on me. I need to be a better blogfriend.

The other thing is, my brother's been going through problems with his eyes, mostly caused by not controlling his diabetes. He had lots of retinal scarring. He went through several laser procedures. He has now had actual major eye surgery this week, involving scalpels and stitches. If this is successful, he may have some night vision. I couldn't go see him in Florida. My company is only letting us take off for death right now--our own. So we've been on the phone a lot. He can't do much else--he can't read or write or watch TV or movies or go online for a month. I'm hoping it's only a month, of course! He and his wife, who identify as "apatheists" but are becoming more solidified atheists, went to see "Religulous" this weekend. He was so depressed at the thought that this would be his last movie for the month, he had to see another right afterwards. It wasn't "Blindness," of course.

My mother and my brother got into an argument about movies! This damned culture war is playing out in the theater, and I really hate it. My mother went to see "An American Carol," and loved it. She's a conservative who loves crude, slapstick humor, so this was really her thing. She figured that between "Fireproof" and "An American Carol" on one side, and "Religulous" and "W" on the other, there might be actual fistfights in theaters this month. So far I haven't heard of any, but when Mom heard my brother tell her he was going to "Religulous," there were some fireworks. They only made up because of the eye surgery thing.

L'Ailee decided that she needed to see "Religulous", too, since it was making atheist-haters mad, and since she doesn't like to go to the movies by herself, I dragged along. Oh, how fun it was to see Bill Maher act like a supercilious prick in an effort to show how ignorant Southerners are. Not just Southerners in general, mind you, but people in my part of the South--Central Florida! He could have found "religulous" Evangelical Christians all over America, but apparently fundamentalism is funnier when said in a drawl.

L'Ailee came to a conclusion about "Religulous" and the last movie we'd seen for a similar reason, "The Golden Compass." "These are embarrassing movies. They make people think that atheists only hate, like those fundamentalist Christians. And we don't only hate. We think about so many things, not only about why we don't believe in God. I only think about that when someone says I have to do something because of their God." She pondered. "Maybe a good atheist movie isn't one that works hard to make an atheist point. That is as bad as what the fundamentalist Christians do, have a message first and then try to build a movie around that. Maybe a real, good atheist movie is one where the characters solve their problems without praying. They talk to their friends or they go to the doctor or they shoot the monster, no God at all. There are so many movies like that, and I think that is what upsets fundamentalist Christians. A lot of movies already say, you don't need religion. Bill Maher's was...what is that *word*?"

"Redundant?" I guessed.

"Thank you. Bill Maher's movie was redundant." I thought it was a great insight. I only wish she'd come up with it before we wasted two hours and twenty-five dollars we'll never get back. Oh, well. At least she respects my Pagan ways, and if she feels the need to laugh at a ritual, she recuses herself to her sewing room. I'm learning to be very grateful for that.

Links with an obvious theme:

This is beautiful, far more entertaining than "Kath and Kim," and I really wish the photographers who claimed to have caught this would show the damned pictures. It also has a very good moral, L'Ailee thinks: "Small people will fight back." Carl Edwards and L'Ailee's favorite driver, Kevin Harvick, fought in the garage at Lowe's Motor Speedway today! Come on, photographers. We all desperately need a good laugh...

Or maybe you'd prefer to watch a baby panda boy, all of one month old and three pounds, take his first steps. This little guy lives in Zoo Atlanta. He's probably as scrappy as L'Ailee and Kevin Harvick.

Cost-cutting secrets from famous NYC chefs, with recipes. Beats the hell out of the McDonald's dollar menu.

Great childrens' books about bad economic times.

Finally, tips for dealing with economic anxieties. These tips are intended for people like me with actual anxiety disorder, but I know others might want to see something like this.


Carie said...

when Tony won you were the first person I thought of was so nice, he finally got a win and was all smiles...

The Edwards, Harvik fight is going to just keep getting bigger, hope they can find some way of working through it, or at least keep it off the track.

Things are hard here to, so many people have lost their houses, our neighborhood is filled with boarded up houses, dead lawns and stray dogs that were left behind...its really bad right now, we are doing everything we can to keep our house...its getting really bad in my area, but you cross the perverbial tracks and the people in Clovis are still living large...

We saw a special on TV the other day about Pandas and my daughter mentioned how much you would have enjoyed it :)

Queers United said...

bloomberg might be able to buy the position of mayor, but i'll be damned if he tries to steal our civil liberties.

Kel-Bell said...


And thanks for the movie review. I was thinking about going to see it this weekend.

alan said...

I should probably never admit to being so old that for me, B-52's have wings...I've actually climbed up into the cockpit of one...

I guess I need to watch "Golden Compass" again, because I must have been much too busy enjoying Sam Elliot on the big screen to notice "the message"...that man doesn't work nearly enough!

Not sleeping isn't going to help things, my dear dear friend; when it's time to lie down, the day is done and no amount of worrying is going to change what's happened or is going to, but sleep can make what's coming much easier to deal with! (I was in my 40's before I figured that out, and still fight reverting on occasion.)

I wish we could "fix" your heart goes out to you and he both!


Daisy said...

L'Ailee came to a conclusion about "Religulous" and the last movie we'd seen for a similar reason, "The Golden Compass." "These are embarrassing movies. They make people think that atheists only hate, like those fundamentalist Christians. And we don't only hate. We think about so many things, not only about why we don't believe in God. I only think about that when someone says I have to do something because of their God."

Good for you.

The overwhelming feeling I get from the Maher types is: lookit how superior I am to the ignorant masses who believe this bullshit!

Not exactly the way to make your case that atheists deserve respect and the civil right to be "free from religion"--which I understand and approve. (I mean, if you are already so superior, you don't need anything from the majority, right? That strategy will backfire, bigtime.)

I guess you ain't the atheists he has in mind, and I ain't the Christians he has in mind. ;) Perhaps this suggests he should get his head out of his Hollywood ass and talk to the rank-and-file of both demographic groups. He might learn something.

Then again, that wouldn't much of a movie, now would it? (Or would it?)

Casdok said...

Oh i do hope your brothers op was a success.

Deb said...

This is really strange, because I often hum the song Rock Lobster. At work. At home. In the car. I can even hum the keyboard riff. This amuses me greatly, but drives hubby and daughter and friends mad.