One Bite at a Time




Sunday, December 22, 2013

Festivus

Today is Festivus, the holiday for the restofus. As we’re separated by great distances, I’ll leave the feast and Feats of Strength to you to handle individually. The Airing of Grievances commences anon.

Facebook claims to advertisers it knows more about each of us than does the NSA. If their algorithms are so accurate, why have the past couple of weeks brought me suggestions that I might like Justin Bieber, the Winchester Brothers, and my own author page? (There were a couple of even more egregious examples, but I forgot to write them down. Those people were so little known to me I have no hope if recovering the memory.) Who’s next? Kanye West? Miley Cyrus? That black guy with the pick in his hair from the Miller Lite commercials? All I know is, if the Philadelphia Flyers show up as a suggested like, I’m out of there.

I read Walter Mosley’s Devil in a Blue Dress last week. (Loved it and will have more to say in the monthly wrap-up.) A lot of paperback books place excerpts from another of the author’s works at the end of a book; Simon and Schuster saw fit to put an excerpt at the beginning this time, and didn’t make what I’d consider to be a fuss that what came first was not Devil in a Blue Dress. I noticed it and skipped the excerpt—which I always do—but I would have been pissed to have read forty pages—that’s right, four-zero pages—of a book I hadn’t bought before finding out A) this isn’t the book I wanted to read, and 2) I have to buy another book to see what comes next. I also shouldn’t have to hunt for the beginning of the story I paid for, and would guarantee I won’t buy the book they tried to trick me into getting interested in.

I had to add “Festivus” to my spell-check dictionary. Next I’ll find out “Lebowski” isn’t included, either. (Goddamnit, it’s not!!)

The Sole Heir returned from a medical school interview in Colorado at 2:25 am Sunday. The scheduled arrival was 12:55, but still. If airlines are going to schedule flights to come in that late, would it bust their balls to have a few more chairs where people can wait for the arriving passengers in the event of a delay?

I had to sit through a motivational speech the other day, about how at 211 degrees water is just hot, but at 212 it’s steam; with that extra degree, you can accomplish anything. I don’t mean to discourage people, and everyone should have their dreams, but talent and luck are at least as important as hard work. No one ever wanted to be a trumpet player more than I, or worked harder at it; I lack the talent. Facing facts is not defeatism. Tony Roberts and his ilk are full of shit. (Don’t even get me started on the effort required to get to 211, and how much might be left in the tank. Then there’s Celsius, where that extra degree is 80% more difficult to achieve.)

Why is that Duck Dynasty douche nozzle allowed to say whatever heinous shit he wants and hide behind the First Amendment, and I’ll get blasted if I call him out as the inbred redneck sister fucker he (probably) is? Don’t I have a First Amendment right to be offensive, too? (I added “probably” in case someone reads this to him and he decides to sue for libel. Of course, since truth is a valid defense against libel, if he doesn’t sue, I must be right, right?)

Why is there only one Festivus a year? I can live without the pole and Feast and FOS, but I’m just getting warmed up on this grievance business. Lend a hand in the comments. Indulge yourself.

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