Diary of A Mad Year

2004 regurgitated

APRIL

5 Swimming in shit? It's bad. Comparing surfers in North OC with their well-muscled counterparts in Santa Cruz, UC Irvine researchers find our boys almost twice as sick as theirs, exhibiting such symptoms as (please read this without pausing for commas, sotto voce) "fever, nausea, stomach pain and diarrhea" and "sore throat, eye redness and skin infection." The Irvine researchers say they studied North OC because "its watershed is in one of the most developed areas in the world and generates highly polluted runoff, which discharges primarily through the Santa Ana River." They chose Santa Cruz because of the availability there of high-grade pot and cheap, multicolored Rasta beanies. . . . 16While working on a story about Lou Sheldon accusing Newsday columnist Jimmy Breslin of making up quotes attributed to Sheldon, it's discovered that if you type in Sheldon's Traditional Values Coalition domain name—www.traditionalvalues—with a .com, instead of the correct .org, you're sent to a Hong Kong-based porn site. At least the Hong Kong-based porn site has the decency to demand you be over 18 before entering the site, whereas Sheldon's site, chock-full of frank discussions of homo and hetero sex as well as plenty of deviant sexual behavior, doesn't. The whole situation could become confusing, especially for kids, so, kids, here's how to tell the difference: one has explicit material pertaining to fisting, necrophilia, bondage and human "leatherdogs." The other is a Hong Kong-based porn site. . . . 17Riverside—the Big Blight, Craptropolis, Methopotamia—is named one of the most livable cities in America. Seriously. Something called Partners for Livable Communities, which not only is based in Washington, D.C., but also apparently doesn't pay travel expenses, ranked Riverside high for economic development (meth) and civic participation (meth), as well as such amenities as wireless Internet access, backyard couches, dog fights, possum bars, cockfights and the high probability of running into a film crew from Cops. . . . 19 California Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell reluctantly accepts the Westminster School District's watered-down discrimination language protecting gays and transsexuals. School Trustees Helena Rutkowski, Judy Ahrens and Blossie Marquez-Woodcock—the latter sounding a lot like a name on a Hong Kong-based porn site—had been willing to let the district's children lose out on millions in dollars in state and federal funding to stick to their deeply held religious intolerance. O'Connell says he'll be watching the trio—two of whom are the focus of recall campaigns—to see if they actually act to protect gay and transsexual students and teachers. Hey, let's not keep him waiting! I call on all students and faculty at Westminster schools—gay and straight—to bend genders heartily. Fellas, break out mama's heels; ladies, grab pop's codpiece; teachers, five words: Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. If you're stuck for ideas, you'll find a cavalcade in any biography of J. Edgar Hoover or the Traditional Values Coalition website—the one that's not a Hong Kong-based porn site. . . . 24 The Los Angeles Times publishes the results of a poll in which 63 percent of California's registered voters say Indian tribes should pay taxes on revenue earned at their increasingly popular casinos. Now, where does someone obtain balls of the weight and girth necessary to voice that opinion? See, when you conduct a 300-year campaign of genocide against a people, it's very bad form to then send them the bill. The poll comes as TV ads ask Californians to support a "Fair Share" plan to tax the Indians. And when, exactly, has the word "fair" ever been appropriate when talking about the treatment of Indians? We literally and figuratively rape them, murder them, shove them to the brink of extinction and give them the most godforsaken plots of land (Oklahoma!). And then we blame their own lethargy when they produce high infant mortality, rampant alcoholism and hopelessness. When somehow, by the miracle of their own labor, they manage to come up with a moneymaker, we all of a sudden get interested in making them part of society? Fuck you! Fuck fair! The Indians get a hall pass. The Indians get the most righteous, most major hall pass this side of being Jesus' girlfriend. Geez, could we treat them any worse? I mean we're talking a serious Ike Turner situation: bash, bash, bash. We bash them so much, so hard that when we give our sports teams derogatory names for Indians (go, Redskins!), we think we're honoring them. It's like hunters saying they admire deer so much they are compelled to shoot and tie them to the hoods of their cars. Well, you'll not tie the Indians to this Hood of Gold! Ah, who am I kidding? Of course, you will. . . . 26 Thousands of Cal State University (CSU) students protest proposed cuts in the CSU budget outside Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's downtown LA office. Misspelled signs and apathetic shouting abound. . . . 30 Americans are shocked to see more photos of Iraqi prisoners apparently mistreated by American soldiers. The pictures show prisoners with bags over their heads, apparently having been beaten, many of them naked. Outraged Americans demand Michael Jackson be charged. The pictures follow an article in which Weekly reporter Nick Schou writes that the war in Iraq "is about to get a whole lot uglier" ["Operation Phoenix Rises From the Ashes of History," Jan. Frigging 16]. Schou's article notes that the U.S. was reviving its Vietnam-era torture program, Operation Phoenix, for use in Iraq. The piece mentions we're working with former Hussein secret police to interrogate suspects in the same prison Hussein used to torture people in. So, just to sum up, we're using some Ba'athists to torture other Ba'athists while we put still other Ba'athists in charge of large regions where other Ba'athists have been rebelling. Oh, yes, this is working out just fine.

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