Lie To Me! Fabrications, Fables, Fairy Tales And Fibs

“He gives speeches, but they put him back in bed where he wrote his satire.”
– Brian Wilson, (He Gives Speeches)

 

I think it was in kindergarten when I remember being told the story of little George “I cannot tell a lie” Washington and the cherry tree he confessed to his father he had chopped down. Through this vignette, my classmates and I were admonished to always tell the truth. The only problem was that often told tale … is a lie, a fabricated fable of fibbing fiction. It was actually created by biographer, Mason Locke Weems, as an anecdote laudable to Washington’s character and as an “exemplary to his countrymen”. Nevertheless, this fractured fairy tale is almost as hallowed as the national anthem.

When I was 2 years old, the US Congress passed the ‘Gulf of Tonkin Resolution’ granting President Johnson the wanton power to take military action as he saw fit in Southeast Asia, ostensibly to combat the spread of communist aggression. The passage of the resolution, enabling Johnson to launch America full-tilt into the Vietnam war, was predicated on a fabricated set of events suggesting that American naval vessels had come under unprovoked attack by the North Vietnamese.

When I first heard the above tale, I remember being skeptical. I’m not sure why my ‘bullshit detector’ went off that day. Perhaps it was the result of a burgeoning character flaw or a latent psychic ability to perceive the teacher’s own insincerity in her own overly dramatic rendition of the fable. Some might say that my lack of gullibility at that tender age speaks volumes of my character or my perception of ethics. And, indeed early on I began to question my moral constitution. In retrospect, I was ‘loony’ to do so.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Google Plus Equals SkyNet: Social Networking And World Domination

“Dave, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye.”
– Hal9000 computer (Arthur C. Clarke, 2001: A Space Odyssey)

 

“Talk to me!”, says I.
“Who are you?”, says the stranger.
“I am no one!”, says I.
“Sorry, I haven’t got time for your pain”, says he shuffling away. Or was it a she?

So have you been invited to join Google+ yet? As of this writing, I haven’t, and it’s probably a good thing, too, because I can only generate so many social niceties per day, certainly not enough to spread around to all the social networking platforms that currently exist in cyberspace.

As I wrote in another post, I ‘did’ MySpace, now on autopilot, and I currently ‘do’ Facebook. I also use Twitter and share my comments on the nonsensical news of the day there (follow me, follow me). But in terms of conversation, there’s not much happening there. Yes, in other words no one will talk to me. Does that phase me, you ask? Not in the least. Though I might confess to being a bit irked.

Now I was told by a Twitter expert, who is wise in the ways of social media, that I needed to ‘start talking’ if I wanted to get the party started. I understand completely. Just as it is with real social circles, some folks are reticent to engage in pleasantries with someone who talks to himself.

“Hello!? Hello!? I’m alive over here!”, I might tweet. The silence is deafening. Not even a retweet.
An email soon finds it’s way to my inbox with the subject line reading “follow me and I’ll follow you”. It’s from ‘dudecashwise362’. “Where are we going?” I reply in an email. No response.

Continue reading

Duck, Cover, Kiss Your Butt Goodbye. Really!

All the waste in a year from a nuclear power plant can be stored under a desk.” 
– Ronald Reagan
Yesterday, there were a couple news articles that caught my attention. The first was about residents from Fukushima nuclear disaster area who have radioactive urine. I don’t know about you, but that makes my hair stand on end. It’s just one more reason why I’m happy I don’t have a microwave oven and am trying to limit my mobile phone use. Really.
The other troubling news item was an article suggesting that US nuclear evacuation plans haven’t been updated to account for population growth. It seems that according to statistics based on the US Census information, urban populations around nuclear power plant facilities have ballooned 450 percent. So what that means is that if you live in an area near a nuclear power plant and your regular drive home from work is a slow, painful and maddening exercise of slowly crawling along with bumper to bumper ‘stop and go’ congested rush hour traffic … well, then you already know what your evacuation route driving conditions will be in the event of a nuclear accident, such as a meltdown. Seriously. Really.
If you are one of those types that like to wave off ‘doom and gloom‘ scenarios dismissing them as ‘what if’ fantasies, then I guess I need to remind you of the disasters at Three-Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima disasters. Yes, nuclear power plants are not the fool-proof safe facilities that governments and industries purport them to be. Really.

Frigging Fructose Festers Fears

Warning: The following blog post will make you sick, but if you’re like me, not as sick as you already are.

Let’s begin with the fact that I am an emotional eater. There, I’ve said it. I freely admit that I can eat myself sick and all in the name of stress relief. That’s right. In some twisted way I’ve come to falsely believe that on any given day my habitually eating myself into oblivion will momentarily ease my life’s chronic daily tension. Yes, I know that I can’t stem the tide of life’s indignities with junk food or even health food, but knowing as such has never caused me to muster the energy required to facilitate ‘mind over matter’ (i.e. put that fork down, step away from the table).

As I wedge that last chunky morsel of hot dog bun into my mouth, I realize the sad reality that the orgasmic second of stress release I’m craving is fleeting; it comes and goes and is replaced by that beached whale like bloating feeling in my gut. Lord, where did I ever get the idea that eating brings stress release? As I reach for another slice of key lime pie, I have to wonder if I was born this way, or if somehow I’ve been programmed to behave like this. Genetics? Nature vs. nurture? Or, … just plain old conspiracy.

Continue reading