People often ask me, "Joe, we know lyrics
mean a lot to you. What made you finally choose to use the word
UP in your classic song, 'Shut UP You Face'?"
Firstly, let me clarify that I use the old 12th century Calabrian
misplaced dangling modifier variation, UP-A, rather than
the contemporanus spelling. As for why I choose that particular
word, out of the thousands of other little words available to
me . . . let me refer you to this about that:
There is a three-letter word that perhaps has
more meanings than any other three-letter word, and that is "UP-A."
It's easy to understand UP-A, meaning toward
the sky or at the top of the list, but when we awaken in the morning,
why do we wake UP-A? At a meeting, why does a topic come UP-A?
Why do we speak UP-A and why are the officers UP-A for election
and why is it UP-A to the secretary to write UP-A a report? We
call UP-A our friends And we use it to brighten UP-A a room, polish
UP-A the silver, we warm UP-A the leftovers and clean UP-A the
kitchen. We lock UP-A the house and some guys fix UP-A the old
car. At other times the little word has real special meaning.
People stir UP-A trouble, line UP-A for tickets, work UP-A an
appetite, and think UP-A excuses. To be dressed is one thing but
to be dressed UP-A is special. And this UP-A is confusing: A drain
must be opened UP-A because it is stopped UP-A. We open UP-A a
store in the morning but we close it UP-A at night. We seem to
be pretty mixed UP-A about UP-A! To be knowledgeable about the
proper uses of UP-A, look the word UP-A in the dictionary. In
a desk-sized dictionary, it takes UP-A almost 1/4th of the page
and can add UP-A to about thirty definitions . If you are UP-A
to it, you might try building UP-A a list of the many ways UP-A
is used. It will take UP-A a lot of your time, but if you don't
give UP-A, you may wind UP-A with a hundred or more. When it threatens
to rain, we say it is clouding UP-A. When the sun comes out we
say it is clearing UP-A. When it rains, it wets UP-A the earth.When
it doesn't rain for a while, things dry UP-A.
One could go on and on, but I'll wrap it UP-A,
for now my time is UP-A, so.............
Time to . . . shut UP-A :)
(thanks to Pauline van Buren for the original-a text!)
Favourite Letters of the Week
My husband found this take on Howard's love for Bush: Johnnie's words
put to a hip-hop beat, complete with news footage & animation.
Takes a minute or so for images/sound to download, (7 mb)
but worth every second. Be sure your chair is firmly secured to
the floor and your butt nailed to the seat! :-) LJK (.mov)
Its A.J. in Antwerp, i was just reading your wonderful newsletter
and i noticed a subject mentioned that is dear to my heart: WHISKY.
If you're ever in this part of the world, i can point you in the
direction of two things: live accoustic music and Whisky-----checkout
the whisky museum kirn (in the black forest ) online. Do take
care,and i do hope your other half is ok (our last email was about
cancer) Best wishes, A.J.
(Note: I've included a couple of important links further
down below about alternative cancer pioneers for anyone who wants
some more information in that area. As far as Le Whisky, I'm currently
attempting to work my way through the single malts. Lagavulin
is still my favourite, with Laphroaig, a close second. At the
moment I'm investigating Ardbeg. Here a little about the Whisky-Museum:
" The vaults of the Kyrburg Castle house
one of the largest whisky collections in Germany. Together with
the bottles in the restaurant bar, there are about 2,500 different
bottles. As well as the well-known brands, there are also rarities
which are coveted by collectors. In addition to spirits from the
traditional whisky-producing countries such as Scotland, Ireland,
the USA and Canada, there are also bottles from, for example,
the former East Germany, Israel, India and Turkey, as well as
'snake whisky' from the Far East. However the emphasis of the
collection is on Single Malt whiskies from Scotland. There are
even some bottles from the 19th century, including one that was
recently recovered from a shipwreck. Other whiskies have matured
for more than fifty years before being bottled." (whisky-museum)
RE:' Preaching to the Choir? Not This Time' article
That story re: Calvin's Bush licking has a
troubling string to it. I have the unfortunate honor of living
in Grand Rapids, Mi. where the overflow from Calvin and Aquinas
(the Catholic college in town) spills out onto my streets crowding
out this lonely Taoist. Once again "the press" is suspect
in all of this. 800 signatures representing many more Christians
protested Bush's commencement insiting no response from the national
press while Laura (lovely laura) was being harngued by "dozens"
of protesters in her visit to the Middle East. That was THREE
dozen, by the way. I heard that story for 2 days! 40 people yell
at an insignificant woman from texas and it is a top story. I
shuttle between G.R. and Gainesville, Fla. Once a week in both
burgs protesters carry signs expressing dissent for this administration's
policies. Everyday Bush is being denounced for his smirking hatred
of decency and it isn't given an inch in the press or a second
on the nightly news. In this era of absurdity it strikes me as
odd that Laura (lovely laura) was the focus. love, Gary
Scientology: Providing Gay Actors with Wives since
Jimmy, Jesus Does Watch you Masturbate.
AMERICA: All the Fascism -- None of the Funny Mustache!
DUST MITES AND FAHRENHEIT 140
42,000 dust mites can live in only one ounce
of dust! Forty pounds of dust are generated per year per 1,500
square feet of space and host 15 species of dust mites! A mattress
can harbour two million dust mites!
Constituents of House Dust: ash, cigarette;
ash, incinerator; combustion products; fiber, synthetic textile;
fibers: wool, cotton, paper and silk; fingernail filings; food
crumbs; glass particles; glue; graphite; hair, human and animal;
insect fragments; oil soot; paint chips; plant parts; pollen;
polymer foam particles; salt and sugar crystals; skin scales,
humans; skin scales, pets; soil; spores, fungal; stone particles;
tobacco; wood shavings.
There are two species of house dust mites,
belonging to the genus Dermatophagoides. These mites are
so tiny that they are virtually invisible without magnification.
They pass through six developmental stages, and the adult form
may also molt once. Adult female mites lay cream-colored elliptical
eggs coated with a sticky fluid that helps them adhere to the
substrate. Under optimal conditions, the cycle from egg to adult
mite takes about one month. Both species of house dust mites feed
on human skin scales, pollen, fungi, bacteria, lepidopteran (moth
and butterfly) scales, animal dander, and skin scales of birds.
Human, cat, dog, and horse dander have been used to raise these
species in a laboratory. Dust mites do not drink free water, but
they absorb water from the air and the environment. The food consumption
of these mites and development increases at higher relative humidities.
Mites survive best at relative humidities of 70-80% and temperatures
of 75-80 degrees F. House dust mites do not survive well at low
relative humidities, especially at higher temperatures. Temperatures
of 140 degrees F for one hour is lethal to these mites.
TRUE COMEDY INTERLUDE
Motley Crue were travelling from Germany to Britain this week.
The band got into a bit of trouble at customs when leaving Germany,
as the already heavily-pierced Tommy Lee was wearing extreme bondage
trousers covered with zips and safety pins. Rather than remove
it all, Tommy came up with a great plan: he climbed on to the
conveyer belt and got himself X-rayed.
TWO PIONEERS OF CANCER RESEARCH
1. Dr John Holt
Recently, A Current Affair aired a story on
Perth-based surgeon, Dr John Holt, who many believe has the cure
for cancer. The NHMRC is supposedly conducting a review of Dr
Holt's method of cancer treatment - Microwave Cancer Therapy.
The original date for this review to be submitted to the Minister
for Health was December 21, 2004. It was not submitted. A further
date was set. Again, the review was not submitted. It has still
not been submitted. Strange when considering Dr. Holt's claim
that he could train any doctor to apply his therapy in a day.
Dr Holt, who is 80 years of age, has cured thousands of people
of many forms of cancer and will be closing his practice on June
30, 2005 because his method of treatment is considered by our
government to be unorthodox. (Chemo, a known killer, is the accepted,
orthodox method in cancer treatment). Dr, Holt's retirement will
be a great loss to his patients and to the many thousands who
could possibly be cured by his clearly successful method; people
who will be told by oncologists that there is nothing that can
be done for them.
This is your chance to help fellow Australians,
who finally have a chance to beat cancer, keep Dr. Holt's work
from being buried by our bureaucrats. (Have you ever noticed how
many appeals there are for cancer research, yet after more than
three decades, there is no cure? Ever noticed how every cancer
cure ultimately gets swept under the carpet? Cancer is a multi-billiondollar
global industry that will not recognize any cure that cannot be
manufactured as a patentable drug. It's about money. Check it
out on the web. It makes very interesting reading).
Demand that the Australian Government and the
Department of Health and Ageing act swiftly and responsibly to
ensure that Dr. Holt's treatment method for cancer be fairly evaluated
and implemented in mainstream medicine in Australia if it is proven
the be beneficial in the treatment of cancer, and that Dr. Holt
be recognized for his ground breaking work.
Forward this message to anyone you know who
believes in common decency.
In Australia, you can forward this email
Mr. Tony Abbott, Minister of Health &
Tony. Abbott@aph.gov.au email@example.com
Thank you for your assistance in attempting
to save the work of Doctor Holt and with it, possibly, the lives
of thousands of cancer sufferers in Australia and the world.
(thanks to Blaise Van Hecke and Samantha Meadmore)
2. SIR JASON WINTERS
(Note: My partner Lin and I have been big fans of Sir
Jason's chaparral blend tea for almost a year now. Personally,
I have never liked herbal teas too much, except, during fasts,
but this is the finest herbal tea I have ever had. It has literally
weaned me off of the 3-4 cups of Earl Grey I used to drink daily.
In fact, I don't even LIKE drinking black tea anymore. Seriously.
It's not cheap, but it is worth it. Deeply satisfying.)
Killing Cancer Sir Jason Winters'
by GARY SAMER
(Gary Samer has been a leading international
teacher, writer and lecturer in the field of natural health for
over 21 years in the USA, Canada, Australia, England, Scotland,
Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, France, Spain and Tahiti.)
In 1977, at the age of 47, Hollywood actor
Jason Winters was told that he had three months to live. He was
diagnosed with cancer of the throat, tonsils and tongue, and had
a tumour the size of a grapefruit wrapped around his carotid artery
and attached to the wall of his jugular vein, resulting in a death
sentence from his physician. He was given 52 shots of cobalt radiation
to his neck and face, then was told that his condition was hopeless,
as the treatment had no effect. Sent home to die and with only
90 days to live, he did what many people in his situation do,
he turned to faith. Through reading the Bible and other religious
books, he learned that herbs were an important part of healing
thousands of years ago. In the Bible, herbs are mentioned for
medicinal purposes 27 times. Sir Jason contacted the Archbishop
of Canterbury to find the name of the herb mentioned in the Bible.
It turned out to be Red Clover, which was used extensively in
Europe for thousands of years to cleanse the blood. Sir Jason
also read that Buddha had referred to an Asian herb as a cure
for tumours. He was surprised to learn that they were aware of
cancers more than 2500 years ago. Finally, through his past experiences
working with American Indians on western movies, he remembered
how they would build a small fire on the ground and brew up a
tea made from a local herb, Chaparral, while Sir Jason and the
other actors would have coffee and donuts. The Indians told him
that their tea purified the blood to prevent or get rid of cancer.
Propped up by his two sons, Sir Jason managed to travel to Singapore
in order to find the Asian herb. He brewed and drank it in great
quantities, but it did not seem to help. He then travelled to
London where he obtained and tried Red Clover, with no results.
Finally, getting weaker and more desperate every day, he went
to the Arizona desert to find Chaparral, but it made no difference
to his condition. One morning, in desperation, he decided to mix
the three herbs together. Sir Jason wrote in his multi-million
selling book Killing Cancer, "It was five minutes
to ten on a Wednesday morning. I made the tea combination and
a miracle happened. I could feel it with the first swallow. Strength
seemed to pour through my body. That day I made a gallon of the
tea and drank it all. When my family walked through the door they
could see the difference in my face. Tears filled all our eyes.
Day after day I drank one gallon regularly. Strength and vitality
returned, but mostly it was my frame of mind. I was going to live,
I knew it. Within three weeks the tumour had gone completely.
Everyone called it a miracle, because in nine weeks I was not
as healthy as before, I was healthier, and God, how I enjoyed
every minute of life." As word of his recovery spread, cancer
patients began turning up at his front doorstep. Before long,
over one hundred patients were coming to his house each day to
learn more about his experience and to obtain his tea. After six
months had passed, Sir Jason had received over 10,000 letters!
On 5 August, 1978, Scottish oncologist Dr. Ian Pierce wrote a
report about Sir Jason's herbal tea and his recovery to the British
Medical Association. Dr. Pierce explained that he had tested the
herbs and certified that they were organic, safe and produced
no side effects. He stated that they are not a cure, but that
they purify the blood to such an extent that the body's natural
immune system begins to work, enabling the body to heal itself.
He stated that the herbs would have the same effect on most illnesses
not just cancer. Also, for those who are not sick, an important
tenet of natural healing is "Prevention is always better
than cure." HRH Prince Charles, himself a user of alternative
medicine, told his friend Jason, "Go out into the world and
be a peacemaker". In 1995, Jason was knighted in Malta as
a Knight of Grace of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem.
HM the Queen and the Pope are also members of this ancient order.
He has since received the US Congressional Certificate of Meritorious
Service, two gold medals from the Dr Albert Schweitzer Foundation
and the Medal of Honour in Madrid, Spain. He has been named Dean
Laureate by the countries of Belgium, the Netherlands and South
Africa. Sir Jason is president of The Federation of Integrated
Medicine. It has been 24 years since Sir Jason Winters was diagnosed
with terminal cancer. He is healthier today than he has ever been,
and though in his 70's, spends much of his time travelling the
world, spreading his story, giving lectures to doctors and nutritionists,
and discovering new herbal formulas such as his world famous Xian,
based on Tibetan legends. In fact, Sir Jason has never had a major
illness since his recovery. He recently had a complete 100 test
health examination at Southwest Medical Associates in Nevada,
USA, and his physician, Dr. Haulk, found absolutely nothing wrong
with him and gave him a clean bill of health! Sir Jason's book
Killing Cancer The Sir Jason Winter Story, by Benjamin
Roth Smythe, has over 12 million copies in print in 9 different
languages and his herbs have been used by over 62 million people
in over 70 countries! (website)
TRUE COMEDY INTERLUDE
"I don't mean to sound bitter, cold, or cruel, but I am,
so that's how it comes out." Bill Hicks
Breaking: Water Remains Wet
By William Rivers Pitt
" . . . So what's the big deal? Fox is just one news
network. It isn't as though News Corporation and its far-right
boss Rupert Murdoch control massive swaths of the news and information
media, right? News Corporation only owns at least one station
in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Dallas,
Washington D.C., Minneapolis, Detroit, Phoenix, Orlando, Atlanta,
Houston, Cleveland, Denver, St. Louis, Memphis, Greensboro, Birmingham,
Austin, Kansas City and Salt Lake City.
News Corporation only controls the Sky Network
in several countries around the world, DirecTV, the FX channel,
Fox News, Fox Sports News, 20th Century Fox, the New York Post,
the Boston Herald, The UK Sun, the UK Sunday Times, 20 other newspapers
in Australia, The Weekly Standard, TV Guide, HarperCollins Publishing
and twenty-two other publishing houses, StarTV which broadcasts
to Asia, twelve different publishing companies focused on children's
books, the L.A. Kings, the L.A. Lakers and the National Rugby
No big deal, right. Probably only a couple
billion people a day watch, read or listen to something controlled
by Mr. Murdoch and News Corporation. Their influence is far and
wee...and fair and balanced.
It was something of a surprise, then, to read
Scott Norvell's comments in the Wall Street Journal on May 20th.
Norvell is the London bureau chief for Fox News, and perhaps accidentally
let the mask of impartiality slip a bit. He was comparing the
privately-owned Fox to the publicly-owned BBC when he said, "Even
we at Fox News manage to get some lefties on the air occasionally,
and often let them finish their sentences before we club them
to death and feed the scraps to Karl Rove and Bill O'Reilly .
. ." (article)
TRUE COMEDY INTERLUDE
"I have no race prejudices... All that I care to know is
that a man is a human being - that is enough for me; he can't
be any worse." Mark Twain
Bush, Cheney Attack Amnesty International
by Jim Lobe
WASHINGTON - Stung by Amnesty International's
condemnation of U.S. detention facilities in Iraq and elsewhere
overseas, the administration of President George W. Bush is reacting
with indignation and even suggestions that terrorists are using
the world's largest human rights organization. (article)
Amnesty International's Response to Rumsfeld
Statement of Dr. William F. Schulz,
Executive Director, Amnesty International USA (article)
'Tank Girl' Army Accused of Torture
Guardian and Human Rights Watch find evidence
of abuse by Iranian revolutionaries under US protection
by David Leigh in Nijmegen, Netherlands
A bizarre revolutionary army supported by British
politicians who want more "regime change" in the Middle
East, has been accused of torture and brainwashing. Evidence obtained
by the Guardian backs a report by Human Rights Watch. This makes
detailed accusations of abuse, including deaths under interrogation,
against the "People's Mujahideen" of Iran (MKO). The
Mujahideen are a 4000-strong anti-Iranian dissident army, currently
under US protection in a camp in Iraq. They have a vociferous
public relations campaign in Britain and the backing of some Washington
neo-conservatives. The group, known as the "tank girls"
because of the preponderance of women in its ranks, has also won
the support of the Daily Telegraph, which wants it to help overthrow
the mullahs in Tehran. . .
. . . A former English soldier in the MKO, Anne Singleton, now
living in Leeds, talked to the Guardian last week. She said the
MKO was a brainwashing cult, which ordered its members alternately
to divorce and re-marry. As a "Tank girl", she says
she wielded a Kalashnikov in the Iraqi deserts with a battalion
of women equipped with tanks and revolutionary slogans. They are
run by Maryam and Massoud Rajavi, who are married. She believed
she was joining a feminist marxist battle group dedicated to the
overthrow of Iran's misogynist clerics. But she says she was deceived
and is horrified UK politicians are backing dangerous fanatics.
. . (article)
ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS
My friend, Peter Best, alerted me to Antony
and the Johnsons, through a recent review in the Sunday Herald.
I looked around on the net, downloaded about a minute of ' Hope
There's Someone,' from the CD 'I Am a Bird Now,' and
after approx 2 lines of singing, I was hooked. (Trust me, listen
to a bit of this track and you will see what all the fuss is about.)
Hard to describe the raw sincere emotion in Antony's voice, like
a mix between early Boy George, late Nina Simone and how I imagine
experiencing a castrato for the first time. Here's the link to
a few .mp3s: (website)
Equally interesting is another member of the
extended Johnson's, Julia Yasuda.
How about this for a bio to kill for:
Julia Yasuda was born in a hermaproditic condition
in Sheng-Yang, Manchuria during World War II. Today she is a set
theorist (someone who studies the universe of mathematics) and
a performer. Her career was started in 1959 as an assistant at
the radio engineering department of the Musashi Institute of Technology
in Tokyo. After she got her Ph.D. in mathematics in 1973, she
started researching and teaching mathematics at various colleges.
In the late 70's, she met photographer Erika Yasuda at an SM bar
in Tokyo and began working as Erika's androgynous model and assistant.
In 1984, the couple came to New York while Julia worked as a visiting
professor at the Courant Institute at NYU. After they returned
to Tokyo in 1985, Julia was appointed as a professor of mathematics
and logic at the University of Maryland (Asian Division) and awarded
a Doctor of Sciences degree in mathematics from Nagoya University
for her contribution to descriptive set theory. In summer of 1987,
the tragic loss of Erika became one of the major events of Julia's
life. Julia published Erika's book of photographs "Who Saw
Beautiful Things" in memoriam. Then she moved to New York
City, where she started to work as a research reviewer for The
American Mathematical Society and The Association For Symbolic
Logic. Julia became a permanent resident of the US as a distinguished
scholar in 1994. She met Antony and Johanna in the East Village
in the winter of 1995 and began performing with the Johnsons.
In that year she also produced and managed the NYC rock group
Transisters. In 1996, Julia appeared in Rosa Von Praunheim's film
"Transsexual Menace" and gave an address about her hermaphroditic
life experience at the Lesbian and Gay Community Center in NYC.
On September 3rd 1999, Julia was naturalized as "a female
US citizen" at the New York US District Court. She continues
to appear at all Johnsons events and is participating in her friend
Professor Milton Diamond's study of Klinefelter's Syndrome. Julia
is in communication with the people around the globe via her radio
Country Music and Suicide
Some US researcher have found that cities with
a higher than average amount of country music on radio stations
have higher suicide rates. (Nashville, Tennessee, was at the top.)
For this study, 'The Effect of Country Music on Suicide,'
Dr Steven Stack was awarded the Ig Nobel Award!
for Medicine, which is awarded annually for unusual research.
Apparently this particular study was conducted
a few years ago when country music songs had more depressing themes.
Today the figures would be refuted as country has a more upbeat
aspect. But I understand the pathos of country's past. I wrote
a couple songs back then that drew me dangerously near to the
edge. Songs like, 'My Horse, Chestnut, Choked on a Horsechestnut.'
Luckily I had the hard lovin' of my wife, Billy Boyles, to keep
me in touch with reality. I should say ex-wife. Unfortunately,
she left me for a bearded folk singer she met at the Port Fairy
Folk Festival. But out of crisis comes opportunity, and it inspired
me to work on my own study, 'The Effect of Minor-Key Folk Songs
on Beard Growth,' which I hope to present at the Australian
Folk Alliance next year.
THE IG NOBEL PRIZES are annual awards, presented at Harvard University,
in Massachusetts, by the publishers of The Annals of Improbable
Research, and are a spoof of the Nobel prizes and represent
years of scouring scholarly journals and newspapers for scientific
efforts worth poking fun at. The 2004 winners:
Steven Stack of Wayne State University and James Gundlach of Auburn
University for their published report "The Effect of Country
Music on Suicide."
Ramesh Balasubramaniam of the University of Ottowa, and Michael
Turvey of the University of Connecticut and Yale University, for
exploring and explaining the dynamics of hula-hooping.
Jillian Clarke of the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences
(and then Howard University, Washington, D.C.), for investigating
the scientific validity of the Five-Second Rule about whether
it's safe to eat food that's been dropped on the floor. (The
"5-second rule" states if food falls to the floor for
fewer than 5 seconds, it is safe to pick it up and eat it.)
The Coca-Cola Company of Great Britain, for using advanced technology
to convert liquid from the River Thames into Dasani, a transparent
form of water, which for precautionary reasons has been made unavailable
to consumers. (Five hundred thousand bottles of the product were
pulled from the market last March after unacceptable levels of
bromate, a potential cancer-causing chemical, were found. Coke
is seeking a new British bottling location.)
The American Nudist Research Library of Kissimmee, Florida, USA,
for preserving nudist history so that everyone can see it.
Daniel Simons of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
and Christopher Chabris of Harvard University, for demonstrating
that when people pay close attention to something, it's all too
easy to overlook anything else -- even a man in a gorilla suit.
The Vatican, for outsourcing prayers to India.
Daisuke Inoue of Hyogo, Japan, for inventing karaoke, thereby
providing an entirely new way for people to learn to tolerate
Ben Wilson of the University of British Columbia, Lawrence Dill
of Simon Fraser University [Canada], Robert Batty of the Scottish
Association for Marine Science, Magnus Whalberg of the University
of Aarhus [Denmark], and Hakan Westerberg of Sweden's National
Board of Fisheries, for showing that herrings apparently communicate
by farting. (article)
Jerry Springer: Catfighting Political Theorists
Crowd: Jer-ry! Jer-ry! Jer-ry!
Jerry: Today's guests are here because they can't agree on fundamental
principles of epistemology and ontology. I'd like to welcome Todd
to the show.
Todd enters from backstage.
Jerry: Hello, Todd.
Todd: Hi, Jerry.
Jerry: (reading from card) So, Todd, you're here to tell your
girlfriend something. What is it?
Todd: Well, Jerry, my girlfriend Ursula and I have been going
out for three years now. We did everything together. We were really
inseparable. But then she discovered post-Marxist political and
literary theory, and it's been nothing but fighting ever since.
Jerry: Why is that?
Todd: You see, Jerry, I'm a traditional Cartesian rationalist.
I believe that the individual self, the "I" or ego is
the foundation of all metaphysics. She, on the other hand, believes
that the contemporary self is a socially constructed, multi-faceted
subjectivity reflecting the political and economic realities of
late capitalist consumerist discourse.
Todd: I know! I know! Is that infantile, or what?
Jerry: So what do you want to tell her today?
Todd: I want to tell her that unless she ditches the post-modernism,
we're through. I just can't go on having a relationship with a
woman who doesn't believe I exist.
Jerry: Well, you're going to get your chance. Here's Ursula!
Ursula storms onstage and charges up to Todd.
Ursula: Patriarchal colonizer!
She slaps him viciously. Todd leaps up, but the security guys
pull them apart before things can go any further.
Ursula: Don't listen to him! Logic is a male hysteria! Rationality
equals oppression and the silencing of marginalized voices!
Todd: The classical methodology of rational dialectic is our only
road to truth! Don't try to deny it!
Ursula: You and your dialectic! That's how it's been through our
whole relationship, Jerry. Mindless repetition of the post-Enlightenment
meta- narrative. "You have to start with radical doubt, Ursula."
"Post-structuralism is just classical sceptical thought re-cast
in the language of semiotics, Ursula."
Crowd: Booo! Booo!
Jerry: Well, Ursula, come on. Don't you agree that the roots of
contemporary neo-Leftism simply have to be sought in Enlightenment
Ursula: History is the discourse of powerful centrally located
voices marginalizing and de-scribing the sub-altern!
Todd: See what I have to put up with? Do you know what it's like
living with someone who sees sex as a metaphoric demonstration
of the anti-feminist violence implicit in the discourse of the
dominant power structure? It's terrible. She just lies there and
thinks of Andrea Dworkin. That's why we never do it any more.
Ursula: You liar! Why don't you tell them how you haven't been
able to get it up for the past three months because you couldn't
decide if your penis truly had essential Being, or was simply
a manifestation of Mind?
Todd: Wait a minute! Wait a minute!
Ursula: It's true!
Jerry: Well, I don't think we're going to solve this one right
away. Our next guests are Louis and Tina. And Tina has a little
confession to make!
Louis and Tina come onstage. Todd and Ursula continue bickering
in the background.
Jerry: Tina, you are... (reads cards) ... an existentialist, is
Tina: That's right, Jerry. And Louis is, too.
Jerry: And what did you want to tell Louis today?
Tina: Jerry, today I want to tell him...
Jerry: Talk to Louis. Talk to him.
Tina: Louis... I've loved you for a long time...
Louis: I love you, too, Tina.
Tina: Louis, you know I agree with you that existence precedes
essence, but... well, I just want to tell you I've been reading
Nietzsche lately, and I don't think I can agree with your egalitarian
politics any more.
Crowd: Wooooo! Woooooo!
Louis: (shocked and disbelieving) Tina, this is crazy. You know
that Sartre clarified all this way back in the 40's.
Tina: But he didn't take into account Nietzsche's radical critique
of democratic morality, Louis. I'm sorry. I can't ignore the contradiction
Louis: You got these ideas from Victor, didn't you? Didn't you?
Tina: Don't you bring up Victor! I only turned to him when I saw
you were seeing that dominatrix! I needed a real man! An Uber-man!
Louis: (sobbing) I couldn't help it. It was my burden of freedom.
It was too much!
Jerry: We've got someone here who might have something to add.
Bring out... Victor!
Victor enters. He walks up to Louis and sticks a finger in his
Victor: Louis, you're a classic post-Christian intellectual. Weak
to the core!
Louis: (through tears) You can kiss my Marxist ass, Reactionary
Victor: Herd animal!
Louis throws a chair at Victor; they lock horns and wrestle. The
crowd goes wild. After a long struggle, the security guys pry
Jerry: Okay, okay. It's time for questions from the audience.
Go ahead, sir.
Audience member: Okay, this is for Tina. Tina, I just wanna know
how you can call yourself an existentialist, and still agree with
Nietzsche's doctrine of the Ubermensch. Doesn't that imply a belief
in intrinsic essences that is in direct contradiction with with
the fundamental principles of existentialism?
Tina: No! No! It doesn't. We can be equal in potential, without
being equal in eventual personal quality. It's a question of Becoming,
Audience member: That's just disguised essentialism! You're no
Tina: I am so!
Audience member: You're no existentialist!
Tina: I am so an existentialist, bitch!
Ursula stands and interjects.
Ursula: What does it [bleep] matter? Existentialism is just a
cover for late capitalist anti-feminism! Look at how Sartre treated
Simone de Beauvoir!
Women in the crowd cheer and stomp.
Tina: [Bleep] you! Fat-ass Foucaultian ho!
Ursula: You only wish you were smart enough to understand Foucault,
Tina: You the bitch!
Ursula: No, you the bitch!
Tina: Whatever! Whatever!
Jerry: We'll be right back with a final thought! Stay with us!
Commercial break for debt-consolidation loans, ITT Technical Institute,
and Psychic Alliance Hotline.
Jerry: Hi! Welcome back. I just want to thank all our guests for
being here, and say that I hope you're able to work through your
differences and find happiness, if indeed happiness can be extracted
from the dismal miasma of warring primal hormonal impulses we
call human relationship.
(turns to the camera)
Well, we all think philosophy is just fun and games. Semiotics,
deconstruction, Lacanian post-Freudian psychoanalysis, it all
seems like good, clean fun. But when the heart gets involved,
all our painfully acquired metaphysical insights go right out
the window, and we're reduced to battling it out like rutting
chimpanzees. It's not pretty. If you're in a relationship, and
differences over the fundamental principles of your respective
subjectivities are making things difficult, maybe it's time to
move on. Find someone new, someone who will accept you and the
way your laughably limited human intelligence chooses to codify
and rationalize the chaos of existence. After all, in the absence
of a clear, unquestionable revelation from God, that's all we're
all doing anyway. So remember: take care of yourselves - and each
Announcer: Be sure to tune in next time, when KKK strippers battle
it out with transvestite omnisexual porn stars! Tomorrow on Springer!
(thanks to Stefan A.)
Speaking of the Herring family . . . . .
RED RADICCHIO SALAD
flour for dredging
parsely, minced finely
1 lemon, quartered
head of red radicchio
salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper
Clean the garfish by slitting the belly from
top to tail, leaving the head. Remove innards with your finger
and wash thoroughly under cold water. Toss the fish in some flour
that has been seasoned with salt, pepper and cayenne pepper, if
you like it a little hot. Make sure you get the flour inside the
cavity. Shake out the excess flour. Set aside.
Cut up a head of red radicchio into
quarters, break it up into bitesize pieces, wash, spin dry and
chill in the fridge. Before serving, toss with a little olive
oil and some balsamic vinegar. Salt and pepper to taste.
Heat a pan with about a quarter inch of olive oil until smoking.
Throw the garfish into the hot oil, turn once, cook until golden,
drain on absorbent paper, and salt. Serve with some lemon quarters,
and the radicchio salad on the side.