October 31, 2015

The howling

I hear it's Halloween. Faaabulous! Here in the Hudson Valley, everyone is Halloween-mad (which you'd know if you read Xmas Carol; I'm just saying). I went to the grocery store today and the streets were filled with people in costume. Halloween is practically a religion around here. The stores have people in costume outside their doors to give candy away to passing kids. And inside the stores, the employees are dressed like true believers. I'm tellin' ya: they're Halloween-mad here.

So it's probably a good time to mention the howling. We've been hearing the strangest howls just after dark. Whatever these creatures are, they congregate right next to our house and howl their hearts out. And it's such a weird howl! Like nothing I've ever heard. (And there are no wild ground animals on the farm. I haven't even seen a squirrel, though there are lots of trees. It's the howlers; they're killing everything out there.)

Yesterday I ran across an explanation of what these critters are. They're hybrids of wolves, coyotes and dogs. Here's an excerpt from the linked article:
An analysis of 437 hybrid animals found that coyote DNA dominates its genetic makeup, with about one-tenth of its DNA from dogs, usually larger dogs such as Doberman pinschers and German shepherds, and a quarter from wolves.

The animal’s cry starts out as a deep-pitched wolf howl that morphs into higher-pitched yipping — like a coyote.
That's exactly what I hear. It's such a wild yipping/howling. I still haven't seen the animals but I know where they live. The farm's manager pointed out a group of trees and said "that's where the coyotes live". Mind you, they're a bit more than coyotes. Puts a chill in your spine, it does.

Hopefully this news will put a few goosebumps on your arms. Now, if you want to go hog-wild and really get scared, pick up a copy of Xmas Carol at the Kindle store. The tale begins on Halloween day, so you'll be in synch with the seasons if you start reading it today.

Have fun. And Happy Halloween, me bloggies.

October 22, 2015

Just a thing

I'm not posting lately because I no longer have an urge to blog. After doing it religiously for a number of years, I find that I've already covered every topic in the universe. My work here is done.

So all you get today is this nonsense:

I was thinking about the silly phrase "a murder of crows", when I realized this technique could be expanded. For instance:

1. A pestilence of priests.
2. A steeple of conservatives.
3. A poof of saints.

Okay, now it's your turn. Submit your inventions in the comments. Remember, you must match the tenor of "a murder of crows". In other words, you work your own opinion into the phrase, as some evil people did with a murder of crows. (Crows are very sweet. I adore them, which is why I object to this phrase.) Put another way, the object of this exercise is to piss off people who love the group that is being described.

G'wan, I'm waiting...

October 6, 2015

Disagreeing with movie-goers yet again

Have you seen "Lucy"? It's a sci-fi movie that came out in 2014 and it stars Scarlett Johansson as Lucy. Here's the rub: it got a 66% rating at Rotten Tomatoes. (Note that on the same page it says it got a 6.1 out of 10 rating, which doesn't translate to 66%. I'm just saying. RT is not a meeting place for smart people.) The rating isn't that bad, but I read a bunch of reviews when it came out and those people hated it. Well, they were wrong. It's totally fabulous. In fact, it's one of my favorite movies. I watched it three times in the last month.

It's the story of a woman who is forced to be a drug carrier, and I do mean forced. Five people are kidnapped, including Lucy, and a plastic baggie filled with a strange drug is inserted in their stomachs. They are then forced on planes to Paris, Rome, etc. to be met by drug couriers on the other end.

The drug isn't your typical dealer's favorite high. It's a wildly powerful substance that babies use to form their brains in the womb. But it's available only in tiny quantities. However, an enterprising criminal learned how to synthesize a relatively large quantity -- and that is what was placed into the victims' stomachs. Okay, that sets the scene.

Lucy, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it) was in the custody of monstrous, women-hating thugs as she awaited transport on the plane. One of them tried to rape her and ended up kicking her in her stomach -- and perforating the bag. It's at this point that the movie really begins.

The drug has the effect of opening up the mind. The movie is built on the myth that says humans only utilize 10% of their brain-power. This is totally false but hey, it's only a movie. So as the drug courses through Lucy's system, she begins to evolve, quickly and madly.

The movie veers into fights, with Lucy able to lift people into the air with the power of her mind. She can do lots of other tricks, too. And all the while, her brain advances. At the climax of the movie, she reaches the point where she is utilizing 100% of her brain.

That's all I'll reveal, but I have to say I found the entire movie, and especially the conclusion, to be wildly wonderful and entertaining. The only reason some viewers gave it a low rating, I suspect, is that Lucy doesn't continue to fight people and blow things up for the entire movie. At a certain point, it becomes much more intellectual -- and that's the point at which you lose American viewers. Fight scenes and car chases? Love it. But intellectual stuff? Americans say "get me outa here!"

It's a fabulous movie. If you've seen it, chime in. As for me, I plan to watch it a few more times. You see, what Lucy discovers is in keeping with what I believe to be the true nature of reality. I won't say another word.

October 5, 2015

Illusion of gay-friendly pope collapses

There's not much more to say. Today's news confirms the anti-gay outlook of Pope Francis.
VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis opened a divisive meeting of the world's bishops on family issues Sunday by forcefully asserting that marriage is an indissoluble bond between man and woman.
The Roman Catholic church will never say that gay marriage is okay. The reason? It might interfere with the Catholic view of women as being far less important than men. Women aren't exactly full-fledged people, in the Vatican's view. And men are commanded by Jesus to lord it over the wimmenfolk. That is the true purpose of marriage: it is the perch from which godly males look down on their inferior female partners, presumably gathering holiness all the while.

Therefore, in the eyes of the Roman Catholic church, two men or two women cannot be allowed to marry. It would literally be impossible for they would be equals, which thwarts the god-given misogynistic power structure of Holy Marriage. The Roman Catholic god doesn't like that. End of story -- for all time.

The allegedly gay-friendly remarks of Pope Francis were just smoke and mirrors. But then, that's what religion is.

October 1, 2015

The pope's BFF: Kim Bigot Davis

Really disgusting news from pope-land. I'll let Jerry Coyne say it for me. This is from his post, "Pope Met Secretly with Kim Davis":
I have yet to see a mainstream American venue, like the New York Times or the New Yorker, point out in an editorial the disparity between Francis’s words and his actions (or rather, his inaction in changing repressive Catholic dogma). Those who claim that Francis really is a liberal pope, committed to changing Church dogma, but moving very slowly because that’s the only way to do it, must explain this secret meeting with Davis as well as his encouragement of her actions. If he really wanted the Church to eventually deep-six its position on gays, the worst way to do it is to provide succor for those who want to deny gays their legal rights.

The Pope is not liberal: he still opposes women’s equality, abortion, and rights for gays. He won’t even mention population growth as a factor causing degradation of the environment. At best his values are those of a Reagan-era Republican. So let us not call the man “liberal”, for while he gives lip service to Enlightenment values, he secretly meets and encourages bigots like Kim Davis.
It really was disgusting. I have no other word for the pope's actions. And, in accordance with my longstanding suspicions, it turns out this was his anti-gay trip. He just did it "secretly". Ha. Secret my ass. He knew we'd learn all about it after he left the US. So it was not only disgusting, it was cowardly.

UPDATE: The gooey aftermath. I don't buy it. The pope knew who Davis was and what she stood for. He practically applauded her in his comments to reporters about conscientious objectors. I figure the pope was trying to send smoke signals to the conservative dingbat wing of the church, and got caught in the act. What do you think?