1 cup vitriol, 2 tsp. profanity, mix w/powdered loathing


I was just giving Tessa a headrub and she fell asleep on my chest – prompting me to tap her on the eyeballs and telling her to move. “Why?” she asked.

“Because I have to write a blog,” I said.

“Is it going to be all sunshine and light?”

“Oh yeah,” I said, “Absolutely… oh wait, I mean NO.”

“You know your readers come to you for sunshine and light.”

If that’s the case, my friends, turn away now, because we got ourselves a Bad News-a-palooza!!! Why, just in the last two days:

• Massachusetts replaces Ted Kennedy with a teabagging douche

• Barring miraculous testicle growth, the Democratic agenda is dead, and Obama will end up like Jimmy Carter

• The Supreme Court ruled that corporations can give as much money to Republican candidates as they want, overturning decades of precedence (and rational thought)

• Air America got shitcanned to the dustbin of history

• The UNC Tar Heels got drubbed by Wake Forest AT HOME, making it the third straight loss, with seemingly no answers for a turnaround

• It has pissed down rain in Los Angeles for the sixth straight day in a row

• and some other things I can’t really mention.

Let me use this blog right now to let out an ear-shredding, glorious


just so those of you at work have to scroll past it. FUCK THIS FUCKING WINTER!!!


In the meantime, let’s set a few things straight.

1. I’ve been taken to task for “giving up” on the political process and told “all liberals fold and take home their toys when things don’t go their way” and “if you do nothing, the worst people in the world win” and the like. Let me reiterate: I will still give money to my local progressive politicians. I will raise money for Gillibrand. I will affect change in my ‘hood. But I am not going to immerse myself in the news anwmore, because THE NEWS IS ALWAYS BAD, AND I FIGHT DEPRESSION REGARDLESS.

I’m not even listening to NPR for the next few months, and that’s saying something, coming from a pinko pill-popping leftist stooge monkey like yours truly. What the fuck, I already had to give up lattés and granola because of IBS, I’m sure Linda Wertheimer won’t miss me.

I say this, even though 95% of me thinks this country is too stupid to save, and even if it weren’t, there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it – even for my daughter – and the Supreme Court ruling just made that even clearer. All I can do is open up my home for friends and weary travelers and lend money and grow vegetables. Anything more is a waste of stomach lining.

2. Regarding my beloved Tar Heels, I’ll reiterate something I wrote to friends earlier today: I don’t think any of us realized what a psychic blow it was to lose Tyler Hansbrough. He brought superhuman focus to our team and did it for four years, allowing us to infantilize in his presence. Now we are adrift, without a student leader or, really, a personality we can get behind.

I’ve always said that every team is merely a custodian for the higher philosophy of Dean Smith, and every time we’ve broken from that path, we not only lose, we cease having much meaning. I know that sounds fruity to many of you, but you can suck it; the Carolina Family stands for something bigger than basketball, and it’s the only religion I’ve got.

Of course, this is where you Christians have an advantage – your God is great every year, whereas I can have a really crappy season.

3. When it rains in Los Angeles, it’s like a magical spell wears off. You wake up and wonder what the fuck you’re doing here. Of course, I’m always wondering that anyway, which means the rain is making me insane. And don’t come to me with that “you don’t know winter like I know winter” bullshit… six days straight of pelting rain and 45 mph winds is bad for anywhere, even London or Seattle. And we’ve got another week to go.

4. A word about the The Top Ten Handwritten Labels to Give Your VHS Videotapes So Nobody Will Watch Them and Find Out They’re Actually Porn blog from a few days back. I’ve been getting lots of emails about it, but let me say this… you’ve got to be careful with this particular genre.

Remember, this was 1991, and in a house full of 22 and 23-year-old guys who were underemployed and had a finely-whittled sense of the absurd. If you made your VHS label too boring-sounding, or too ludicrously mind-numbing, any one of us might have popped it into the VCR in a fit of ironic pique. “Oh!” someone might have said, “The video feed from a closed-circuit camera in a middle-school library? Let’s put this on during a party while cranking Soul II Soul!”

So you had to make the label just right. “Citizen Kane” sounds like a bit much, but you can imagine somebody saying to themselves “I’ve never watched it, and it’s raining… fuck it.” And then your porn is discovered. On the other hand, as good as it might have been, nobody on earth is ever going to pop in “Agnes of God” because it’s raining. As The Budster™ or I might have said, “it’s never a “‘Norma Rae’ night”.

Like everything in life, it’s a matter of balance.

So I bought a bass.


0 thoughts on “1 cup vitriol, 2 tsp. profanity, mix w/powdered loathing

  1. LFMD

    You forgot to mention the tragedy in Haiti in your list of sorrows.
    Do you remember Donna Leinwand? UNC grad from our era, worked on the DTH, a ZTA (I think if memory serves). I am sure your paths crossed. She is reporting for USA Today from Haiti and is doing some excellent coverage. Check it out.

  2. Anne

    Sweet Rickenbacker bass. I always wanted to play bass in a rock band. Retail therapy: Good for the soul — and the economy! It’s a win-win. ;-)
    And again with the “you Christians.”
    *swoosh* That’s the sound of it rolling off my ol’ back.

  3. the other Lee

    I have nothing to add, other than to say, nice bass and I have always loved Rickenbacker basses. And now you have a leg up on your next Halloween costume – one word – LEMMY!!!!

  4. Greg T.

    You completely undermined all the negativism of the message by posting a picture of the Rick. My love affair with Rick basses traces back to the ’73 4001 that I bought at the Music Loft in Raleigh when I was 15. I still can’t play the bass (long story) but am magnetically drawn to all Rickenbacker guitars. Nice Ax!

  5. GFWD

    By the way, I heard today that poor old Conan got like $32.5 million and his producers and writers also got unseemly gobs of money and they’re on a forced holiday until September when there is a [wink wink] chance that they’ll get picked up by Fox. Cry me a river, Conan, who I never thought was particularly funny anyway.
    As for the Democrats in Mass., I get frustrated when people don’t toughen up and cry about fouls. But I really hate when folks think they can half ass something and ride on the coat tails of others thinking that’s enough to carry the day.
    I didn’t follow the race at all, but if everyone there thought the Dem candidate was not very good, why did they risk such a pivotal seat with mediocrity when they knew or should have known that the Republicans were going to make such a strong surge with their candidate? Stupid.
    As for Carolina basketball, I have the 2009 Championship saved on my DVR. The players looked so young back then. Ed and Deon looked so promising. And the Heels always win that game. Always.
    Ian, which of your coded porn VHS tapes got busted? We want the coded label name and the actual porn video title.
    That bass looks a lot different than the one I have for BAND HERO.

  6. mom

    Yeah… things were bad enough with the corporations running (and ruining) the country. Now they are ENCOURAGED to do bad stuff. I used to be a politics junkie, and though I’ve lived too long to have pie-in-the-sky hopes for the Dems and Obama in the beginning, now I’m in the second or third stage of grief. I have some of the same feelings about what’s happening to our country I had as a much younger person watching Joe McCarthy and his henchmen… It’s lots worse now. Now there are mobs, and 24 hour nut-job TV and such greed and.. aw, hell.
    When that SC decision came down, I went to my DVR and un=-programmed every political show on my list… right down to Meet the Press and NewsHour (pbs). I have peeked in to see how the situation in Haiti is going… who would have thought this would be the most positive news story lately, as the world struggles to come to their aid and achieves a few small successes? But last night, instead of ANT reference to the news, I opted for a DVR of the Harry Potter movie I missed in the theater. As dark and scary as it was, the news is way more terrifying.

  7. MarkC

    Ian, man that list of VHS porn video names is friken hysterical, I was laughing out loud at work and had share them with my co-workers. That is the Wednesday’s Child sense of humor that I absolutely love. Not to get serious since we are on a silly note, but that kind of thing helps ward off depression for me. Even virtual friends with a similarly twisted sense of humor are a comfort and bulwark against the raging storm of sophomoric political “debate” that masquerades as a republican from of government. Which reminds me of denominational poster – “Meetings – None of us are as a dumb as all of us.” (http://despair.com/)
    “Offering lettuce to a rattlesnake.” That one will keep me laughing for at least 72 hours.
    Thanks for everything, I appreciate it. Keep laughing. Oh, and you are right about Carolina basketball, it is more than basketball.

  8. eric g.

    This Carolina team has the worst trait of the worst of all Carolina teams: WE DON’T VALUE POSSESSION OF THE FUCKING BASKETBALL!!!!!! Sorry. Had to get that out of my system.
    I’m feeling pretty stupid for ever having believed in John Edwards today.
    I’ve given up on politics. But I’ll never give up on the Tar Heels.

  9. Sean

    1. http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2010/01/scott-brown-is-more-liberal-than.html
    Scott Brown was simply less of a douche than the woman he was running against, but he’s now more liberal than Olympia Snowe. If we are a single voter group, I doubt that vote was “*this* health care bill”.
    2. Everything that’s good about our Tar Heel Men are things that can’t be taught – size, talent, hops, the wish to be at Carolina. Everything that’s bad, basketball knowledge, will go away the further into the season we get . 8 – 20 has you spooked, man.
    3. S.A.D. is bad everywhere, but Barnaby and I have gone out in the frigid cold a couple of times because our house had simply run out of air. Every time we go outside, we’re risking a serious illness for him, but when it breaks above 40 and the sun is shining, we put on six layers and go outside. My point is that it isn’t any better anywhere else, it’s winter.
    4. Share you porn, bitch! What the hell? Back in the day, you had porn on VHS and you weren’t sharing? I know guys who were printing out ASCI porn and hiding in the bathroom! MARK YOUR VIDEOS “PORN, COME AND GET IT!”
    You really ought to slap that bass. Before cleaning it and cooking it, of course.

  10. josie

    Tessa’s a gem. If you poked me in the eye while I was sleeping, I’d have a much different response.
    Is it time to investigate Canadian citizenship again?
    Love the retail therapy solution.

  11. Schultz

    Ian- what happened to your old 4001 that was wood grain? I loved that bass.
    I’m not overly concerned about Carolina. My biggest worry is that Roy Williams is having a crisis and can’t coach his way out of a paper bag.
    Think about it…..our 7 losses include #1 UK, #2 Syracuse, #4 Tx, #17 GT, #25 WF. Thrown in a loss to a good Clemson team. (The loss to Charleston was awful).
    We’ve beaten two top ten teams in Ohio St and Mich St. We have the balance of the ACC schedule and the ACC tournament- where ANYTHING can happen.
    It’s not over. Roy will figure it out and we will salvage a decent season.
    The Supreme Court decision is mind boggling to me- along with the fact that Goldman Sachs posted $16 billion in bonuses- yes that’s an average of $500,000 per employee. But your comment that corporations can give REPUBLICANS as much as they want is laughable- the biggest winners in that decision are unions. Please don’t act like this is one sided. The decision is bad for everyone.

  12. cullen

    Not to add fuel to the fire, but John Edwards really pisses me off too. Even if the heels keep losing, I don’t think we’ll be seeing him all primped and shiny at any Dean-Dome games this season.

  13. Schultz

    John Edwards…….
    Call me a hater- but there is nothing to express my anger and outrage over this douchebag. He is an embarrassment to mankind.

  14. dct

    “Nobody on earth is ever going to pop in “Agnes of God” because it’s raining.”
    This may be your most uncontroversial statement ever. LOVE it.

  15. Tammy O.

    I recently spent about a week watching all of season 7 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I usually re-watch a season every Winter – it’s a good coping mechanism for SAD. I couldn’t figure out why I picked season 7 this year, because, comparatively speaking, it’s not an awesome one and I’ve never had the strong desire to choose it over other seasons. I just realized, though, that I picked it precisely because of the grim feeling that’s predominating in national politics. Season 7 is all about facing the really Big Bad, leadership in the face of so much despair, and finding ways to kick ass when the chips are down. It was enormously inspiring and cathartic. I’d recommend it, along with a good dose of Wii, some volunteer service, and going to the gym. We can make it through the next couple of weeks. More importantly, we have to keep fighting.

  16. John Galt

    Question: Does Tessa frequent your blog, or did the “sunshine and light” line come from you?
    Here’s a newsflash for you; Obama = Carter + steroids (and that’s not a compliment.) Not to gloat, but I’ve been saying that since Obama was chosen as the Dems’ Great Hope. And I’ve been around long enough to remember Carter.

  17. wottop

    On a bright note:
    How many times have we seen the woofies go crazy on the ‘Heels and then take the pipe in the next game? I realize that UNC has only lost to them once since Roy got back, but before that.
    They played out of their fuckin’ minds to beat the dookies. That should at least give us some encouragement. That and the 6 days we have to practice.

  18. kevin frm NC

    Glad you got the guitar.. I think it was the correct call for your presnt state. I suspect it will be used as an axe over the next few days!
    Yeah..Edwards….it is finally over

  19. FreshPaul

    You know what else Carter and Obama have in common?
    -they’re the last two presidents to be willing to tell Americans hard truths they don’t want to hear rather than blow sunshine up their asses. (ergo, one reason why representative government has its shortcomings).
    -they’re the last 2 practicing Christians, by all evidence, to have inhabited the White House.
    -they’re the two of the most reliable ad hominem whipping boys for the mouth breathers who get their scripts from talk radio.
    et cetera.
    Carter should have gotten this pissed off publicly long ago…like ’81. Would have set a good example.

  20. FreshPaul

    Oh yeah, and on Edwards…his election was quite analagous to Brown’s in Mass.
    In other words, Coakley pulled a Lauch Faircloth.
    Now, I will go another dozen years without typing or writing “Lauch”.

  21. Ian

    1. My brother is funny. I don’t think it’s possible to retell the story when all of us from the Purple House took a road trip to Nag’s Head, and stopped at a Kwic-Mart for snacks. In the parking lot was a ’84 Chevy Citation with SLAP THAT BASS emblazoned on the rear window. The owner meant the musical instrument, of course, but when we got inside, we were making jokes about beating the shit out of a fish. We didn’t realize the Citation guy was in the next aisle behind the salted snack treats, and he sheepishly approached us, saying “Um… um… it’s *bass*” before dejectedly walking away. I’ve never felt so bad and wet my pants with stifled laughter at the same time like that.
    2. Donna Leinwand!!! Awesome! She was one of my editors. Class act!
    3. From yesterday… David Rees from “Get Your War On” is a Chapel Hillian, and UNC fan. Just sayin’.
    4. Tessa came up with “sunshine and light”. She’s a contrarian, that girl.
    5. Schultzy, I still have the 4001 Rick bass in New York, because these days you can’t travel with anything like that on a plane. Can’t carry it on, and checked luggage is a nightmare. I used to older Rick for our band’s EP last year:

  22. dean

    A few random thoughts from the last few days.
    You like to lump all us Christians as just “you Christians” and I am ok with that. [We] Christians were the first people to jump into action to assist Haiti whereas I am still waiting for reports of “those Muslims” or “you atheists” doing anything. Just sayin’. Do many self-professed Christians louse it up for the others? Sure. But, there are rotten apples in every barrel.
    Yesterday’s Supreme Court decision is good law. If the Court always blindly followed precedent, there would be slavery, separate but equal and no abortions.
    During oral arguments of this case, the government’s lawyer admitted to Justice Alito that their position would ban a book if the book advocated a politician if the book were published during the forbidden period of McCain-Feingold. He also admitted their position would ban documentaries (the crux of the case at hand) and other sorts of publications.
    Should there be some sensible limitations to campaign financing? Sure. As one commenter noted above, however, liberals should not start drinking the hemlock yet because unions are always the most notorious abusers. Campaign spending is not a conservative monopoly.
    I have never understood porn collections. I guess it is just me. I once heard an interview with actor Seth Rogan (or was it Will Ferrell?) where he said there seem to be 2 kinds of people: those that have no problem sitting in a shadowy living room with other guys watching porn and those that find it a little uncomfortable. I suppose I fall in the latter. But, for those of you in the former, rock on.
    Tar Heels. The current roster is so filled with gaping vaginas that I have given up. I am tired of asking myself “gee, i wonder what Rasheed (or Tyler) would have done with that rebound?” every time I see one of our “nice” players getting their shit stuffed. In the words of one Mr. G. Chapman, can we please get some players with gold teeth and afros?
    Massachusetts. Unbelievable. I think it must be some sort of practical joke against Teddy played by Saint Peter in concert with Mary Jo up in heaven. If so, I am personally glad to know that Saint Peter has a sense of humor — that might help me down the road.
    Have a good weekend, one and all.

  23. dob

    The Supreme Court decision was a travesty. Corporations are legal entities whose rights and responsibilities are created by government. People’s rights, certain of them anyway, are inalienable. The rights of corporations, by contrast, are necessarily defined by the government. For the so-called originalists to find constitutional succor for the idea that the government cannot restrict the right of corporations to purchase political speech is laughable. For their opinion to carry the day is contemptible.
    As for your notion that unions have been the most notorious abusers of paid political speech, you’re entirely, 100% full of shit. One need review the history of late 19th and early 20th century American history for a good hundred years of counterexamples.

  24. FreshPaul

    a few things:
    first, I agree with dean on the Heels foremost, and on “you Christians” secondarily. The Heels are like a bunch of apologetic eunuchs apparently too afraid of offending the basketball, opposing guards, or the three point line to play with some fire.
    the real problem viz corporations and Constitutional rights isn’t this week’s decision (as cynically predictable as it was), but the much grander fuck up by the court in the late 19th century when corporations were granted 14th Amendment rights. That’s right, the most significant amendment since the Bill of Rights, ratified to guarantee citizenship, rights, and equal protection for all Americans–especially recently freed slaves, was pornographically bastardized thoroughly by the robber barons who owned most of the federal government then. Example? 90% of cases taken to the federal bench relating to XIV from Reconstruction through the Gilded Age regarded ‘rights’ of corporations, not the baldly shat upon ‘rights’ of black people.
    That precedent, that corporations have citizenship rights under XIV, is still in effect and yet to be overturned. To me, this gets to a more fundamental (and much more entrenched) problem.
    Unions will/have benefited from such nonsense an iota of a fraction of the extent that robber barons past and present have. Of course they’re shady, but the weight and impact of that shadiness is a drop in the urinal.

  25. Kevin In Philadelphia

    I heard a good summation by Thom Hartmann today about the SC decision in comparison to Dred Scott (another terrible one). “Dred Scott solidified people as property. Citizens United v FEC solidified property as people.”

  26. xuxE

    YAY! BASS! when are you going to teach Lucy some bass? working on guitar and keys/beats over here with my two… cha-ching! makin the band!


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