Archive for the The River of Time Category

DEAR CANADA: SORRY ABOUT ALL THE STUPID PEOPLE

Posted in American Decline, amusant, And now the snorting starts, Antique surgical instruments, Barry Goldwater, buffo, Cowboys and Aliens, dada, Early-onset dementia, GOP, greannmhar, Hapax Legomenon, Headline, Headlines, health care, 재미, αστείος, ανόητο άτομα, kluchtig, lächerlich, Mad Men, photograph, Photography, Politics, Rage Against the Machine, Religion and Politics, Small Town America, snaaks, Stupid People, The River of Time, The Wrath of God, Travel, urinary tract infections, USA! USA! USA!, 滑稽, מצחיק, خنده, خنده دار, سكارليت جوهانسون, سياسة on June 29, 2012 by paulboylan

Dear Canada:

First of all, how is the weather?  Good I hope?  Global climate change is going to be really good for you.  As the U.S. heartland transforms into a vast desert, the wheat growing regions are moving north into Canada, making you into the bread basket of the world (like we used to be).  And don’t even get me started on how much money you are going to make when the Arctic Ocean ice cap melts, opening up direct shipping from Canada to Asia, not to mention the resources of the Arctic you will be well-positioned to exploit, like easy to get offshore oil and natural gas (you lucky stiffs!). I hear you already have plans to sell that oil to China, transporting it cheaply across the Arctic Ocean to Russia and then via pipeline or train to China. Hot damn (no pun intended)!

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And how is your population?  Growing?  Healthy?  Life expectancy better than your neighbors to the south?  Great.  Really good.

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I’m writing to apologize, in advance, for the mob of stupid people who are headed your way from the United States.  Here is what happened:  the United States Supreme Court has upheld President Obama’s attempt to create a national health care system like you have, like Europe has, and like the rest of the civilized world has.

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This has upset a lot of really stupid people.  They don’t want improved health care. In response to the Supreme Court’s decision, this group of really stupid people have vowed to leave the United States and emigrate to Canada.

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No. Seriously.  Seriously.  I’m not kidding.  I know I am a kidder, and we’ve shares some really good jokes, but this time I’m not joking. Look, here are some tweets from some of the stupid people headed your way:

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Yes, I know how funny that is. Yes, I know that Canada has a national health care system.  But I told you these are stupid people.  And they are on their way north to you.

THANK YOU, CANADA!

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Thank you for taking our idiots.

Consider it payback for Celine Dion, curling and that joke you call bacon.

Even though they are idiots, I think they are in for a big shock.

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Sincerely,

Paul

A GRIM FAIRY TALE – Free Among the Monkeys And Elephants

Posted in And now the snorting starts, Art, Cowboys and Aliens, Grim Fairy Tales, Hubris, 재미, αστείος, скарлетт йоханссон, Our animal friends, Pop Culture, The Great State of Montana!, The River of Time, the snows of yesteryear, The Wilhelm Scream, مقاطع‏ ‏سكس‏ ‏مصارعه, مضحك on March 6, 2012 by paulboylan

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“Hello, children. Would you like to hear a story?”

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I just saw a ten minute preview of the new movie John Carter, and it got me thinking.

I’ve met a lot of professional writers, many of which I admire as artists who have skills I cannot and could not possibly match.  But not all the writers I’ve encountered in my life fit that description. The simple fact is that being a good writer and being a successful writer are often different things and depend on factors that have nothing to do with skill.

So I see the John Carter preview and it looks great. And I am reminded of the book and the author that inspired it back in 1912 – exactly a century ago. And I realize, again, that no one can say what is good or predict with any accuracy what will last.

What follows isn’t exactly a grim fairy tale, but it’s close enough to fit in that category.

So, without further faffing, I give you…

FREE AMONG THE MONKEYS AND ELEPHANTS

On night in late October, 1913, in Dover, England, in a pub at the bottom of a hill, in the shadow of Dover Castle – walking distance to the beach where Matthew Arnold heard ignorant armies clashing by night – George Bernard Shaw was working hard to persuade Lydia, an aspiring American actress, to have sex with him.           

“Should we be going?” Lydia asked.  The piercing cry of gliding seagulls sounded loudly throughout the thick seaside darkness. “The train back to London leaves in ten minutes.”

 “We can catch the next one,” Shaw responded. 

 “Do you really think you can get me a reading for Liza?”

 “I am the playwright.  Of course I can.”

 “But I don’t know how to do a cockney accent.”

 “That’s won’t be a problem,” Shaw said.  “I can teach you.  Look, since we’re waiting for the next train, why don’t we take a walk down to the beach?  Matthew Arnold wrote his famous love poem there.”

  “Who? Lydia asked.

 “Never mind,” Shaw said, taking her hand and guiding her out of the pub.  They passed where James Joyce sat with his traveling companion and lover, Nora.  Joyce listened to Nora and watched her face as she drank pint after pint of bitter, dark, thick beer.   He listened as she talked about her sex life prior to meeting him.

“I think he made them a bit firmer sucking on them so long,” she slurred, nourishing her thick Irish working-class accent each time she lifted her glass and gulped beer. 

Joyce and Nora were on their way to Paris from Dublin by way of London.  Joyce was struggling to find a publisher for two books – a collection of short stories and a short semi-autobiographical novel.  At that moment, in the middle of her beer-sodden reminiscence, Nora could not have cared less.

 “He made me spend the second time tickling my behind with his finger,” Nora laughed, red eyed.

Joyce smiled and nodded, encouraging her to continue. 

 “I tried it with the banana,” she confessed. “But I was afraid it might break and get lost up in me somewhere.”  Joyce looked concerned, but wasn’t.  He listened carefully, trying with all his might to memorize every single word.

In the same pub, Edgar Rice Burrows sat with his friend and fellow writer, William Seabrook.  Burrows eagerly described a novel he was writing.

 “Thuvia is this voluptuous Martian princess,” he began

 “Are there any other kind?” Seabrook asked.  He genuinely liked Edgar, and admired his success as a popular writer, but nevertheless believed that Burrows was an idiot.

“She is in love with the son of John Carter, the Warlord of Mars -” Burrows explained.

“The Martian princess?”

 “Yeah.  So she’s in love with this big warrior type who can jump really far and high because his father is from the Earth.”

 “He can jump high because his father is from Earth?”

 “Yeah.”

 “Sort of like a handsome, muscular grass hopper.”

 “Look, do you want to hear about this or not?”

“Yes, I’m sorry. Please go on.”

“So Carthoris – that’s the guy – he has the hots for Thuvia -“

 “Carthoris and Thuvia?”

“Yeah.”

 “Sounds like a bad Shakespearian play.”

 “So she’s got the hots for him, too, but bad guys kidnap her and make it look like Carthoris did it.”

 “So he sallies forth to rescue her.”

 “Yeah. What do you think?”

“Charming.  But tell me about that ape-man novel you are writing.”

“Sure.  It’s based on the short story I published.  Did you read it?”

 “No, but I’m still interested. It is about a man who is half man, half ape, if I remember correctly.”

“Not half-man half-ape.  He is an ape-man named Tarzan.”

“Whatever.  You say that your publisher is willing to pay you in advance to write it?”

 “Yeah.”

 “Well then, why waste your time with your Martian Romeo and Juliet until you’ve finished the Tarzan novel?  What are you going to call it?”

“Tarzan.”

 “I should have guessed.  Sort of a foreign adventure piece I take it?”

“On, yeah. Lots of adventure.  Tarzan is a guy who was raised in the African jungle by apes.”

“It sounds ghastly.  Are you sure they’re going to pay you for this?”

“You bet.”

“I wonder what the appeal is?” Seabrook pondered.

“Every guy wants to be Tarzan,” Burrows explained.  “Tarzan has everything a man could want.”

“Fleas?”

“Tarzan doesn’t have fleas,” Burrows said, irritably.

“Why not?”

“Because I’m not going to give him any,” Burrows said. “I’m giving him a great life.  He’s king of the beasts, lord of the apes.  He can talk to elephants.” 

“Elephants?”

“He can call elephants if he needs them.”

“Why would he need elephants.”

“If he needs a ride, or if he needs help.”

“How helpful can an elephant be?” 

“Lets say he’s surrounded by bad guys, and there’s no way out.  Well, he calls to the elephants and they come and trample the bad guys.”

Deus Ex Elephant?” Seabrook asked.

 “What?”

  “Never mind.”

  “The point is that Tarzan does what he wants.  He is totally free from the pressures of the modern world.  He could have been anyone, any one of us.  And that’s my point.  I want the reader to think, ‘Hey, if I had been dropped into a jungle, I could have been Tarzan.  Tarzan and me are the same guy, we were only brought up different.”

 “You see this Tarzan as leading some kind of idyllic life?”

 “Not idyllic – ideal.  Idyllic lives are boring lives.  Tarzan faces plenty of danger to keep things interesting.  And there are things missing that he really needs.”

“Soap and water?”

“No.  Women.  There aren’t any women around.”

“What about native women?”

“Oh, yeah, plenty of those.  But there are no white women anywhere.  So he meets this beautiful explorer, and she shows him the ropes -“

Seabrook smiled at the reference.

” – and brings him back to London.  Good stuff.  But the biggest reason why my readers are going to admire Tarzan is his total freedom, so it won’t surprise anyone when Tarzan would rather be in the jungle instead of in civilization.”

“Free among the monkeys and elephants?”

“Exactly.”

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Elmo Lincoln, in the first Tarzan film (1918)

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William Seabrook

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Nora Barnacle

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James Joyce

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George Bernard Shaw

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Lydia Atherton

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Edgar Rice Burroughs

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Cathorsis (the one doing the stabbing)

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Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions – and Ray Gun Girls

Posted in 3D, Antique surgical instruments, Art, Astronomy, Avatar, Barry Goldwater, Battlestar Galactica, Brave New World, Cinema, dada, Droit de Suite, Droit Moral, космическая девушка, космическая девушка space girl, Fair Use, Family and Friends, Fire and Ice, Free Utilization Doctrine, French Impressionistic Knock-Knock Jokes, Fritz Lang, German Reformation Knock-Knock Jokes (1520-1553), Globalization, Hapax Legomenon, Harvey Eisner, Isnt nature wonderful?, It's not what you think, Joseph Bleckman, Life, Mad Men, morbidly obese French revolutionary philosophers, morbidly obese gymnasts, Nichola Tesla, Paying Attention, Photography, Pop Culture, Post Modern Knock-Knock Jokes, Research and Development, Review, Romance Language Knock-Knock Jokes, Rotwang, Science, Science Fiction, Space, Stargate Universe, Steampunk, Stoats, Sumerian Knock-Knock Jokes, Television, The Matrix, The River of Time, The Wilhelm Scream, TV, Uncategorized, USA! USA! USA!, Weird Stuff, What are you sick or something?, Why do people in other countries talk funny? on March 11, 2011 by paulboylan


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By now you know I kind of dig Space Chicks.

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In addition to writing substantively on the historical, sociological and geopolitical aspects of Space Chicks, my purely scholarly passion led me to become the worlds leading authority on subject.

Professor Boylan presenting a paper on Space Chicks at the University of Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2006

When I first determined the importance of Space Chicks as a pop culture phenomenon,  I soon observed that there is an important Space Chick subset that is best described as “Ray Gun Girls.”  Simply put, a Ray Gun Girl is a girl often, but not always, wearing a space suit in close proximity to a ray gun, often, but not always holding the ray gun.

Like Space Chicks in general, Ray Gun Girls first appeared on the cover of pulp magazines.

And when Space Chicks migrated from pulp novel covers to film and television, Ray Gun Girls began showing up there, too.

In all honesty, most Ray Gun Girl images are fetish driven manifestations of arrested male adolescent wish fulfillment, amounting to little more than soft core pornography.

However, as the years went by science fiction matured, and Space Chick images began to include strong, capable women who were fully realized heroic figures as complex and detailed as any male hero. As this happened, the images of Ray Gun Girls also evolved into something more serious and less sexist.


To me, the entire phenomenon is really quite fascinating. I don’t have the time or inclination to explore in this blog why there is such a driving interest to depict women holding ray guns.  The psycho-sexual implications alone would fill more space than I have to work with here. However, it is worth noting that the Ray Gun Girl concept is distancing itself from sex object utility and is increasingly being seen as a sign of feminist empowerment.


I’m taking the time here to provide you with the opportunity to judge for yourself.  Below is a gallery of Ray Gun Girl drawings and photos representing only what I was able to download in a few minutes before I gave up and went on to more serious business.  Nevertheless, this incomplete sample is the most comprehensive collection of Ray Gun Girl pics anywhere on or off the internet.

I present them in the order my computer imposed due to file title.

[If you don’t see any gallery below, then you need to go back up to the top and click on the link entitled something like “The Ultimate Ray Gun Girl Gallery.”

I take no responsibility for any offense that may result from anyone accessing and scrutinizing any of the photos in that gallery.]

A SHORT CONVERSATION WITH MY WIFE

Posted in American Decline, Brave New World, dada, Droit Moral, Family and Friends, Hapax Legomenon, Hate Crimes, Headline, Headlines, It's not what you think, Joseph Bleckman, Life, Mad Men, morbidly obese French revolutionary philosophers, News, pandemic, Paying Attention, Politics, Pop Culture, Post Modern Knock-Knock Jokes, Pycho-Social Trauma, Small Town America, Steampunk, Stupid People, Television, The Matrix, The River of Time, The Wilhelm Scream, The Wrath of God, Travel, Why do people in other countries talk funny? on January 22, 2011 by paulboylan

So I was in bed last night watching television with my wife and we were discussing gun control.

There is no more divisive issue sui generis to the American experience and national psyche than the question of gun control.  I am often asked to appear as a guest speaker on topics touching on constitutional rights.  I always begin those talks by quickly describing my travels and experience living and working with people from similar and vastly different cultures.  Because of my exposure to different cultures I am very much aware of what makes Americans different from anyone else on earth. I also know that very few Americans are aware of that difference.

So I ask groups of people whenever I can what it is that makes Americans different and distinct as a culture.  It often isn’t easy for them to determine because they’ve never considered the question before. Most of them have never been more than 50 miles from where they were born and most of them live near people who look, talk and think the same way they do.

But eventually the Socratic method succeeds in helping my audience discover the truth – i.e,  that it is the rights we enjoy as Americans that makes us fundamentally different.  Americans experience a level of freedom no one else in the world can exercise.

Which prompts the inevitable follow-up question. I ask “What freedoms are uniquely American?”

The answer I get varies from audience to audience, but I am always surprised how often the answer is the right to bear arms.

Those who believe this, of course, are wrong.  The right to bear arms isn’t fundamentally or uniquely American.  The Taliban in Afghanistan believe the same thing and are willing to kill anyone who attempts to compromise their right to own and use fire arms.

I bring this up only to illustrate how important it is to own firearms to many, many Americans.  It is so important that millions of Americans value the right to bear arms above the rights of speech, assembly and movement.

I am not that extreme in my views, but I do feel the right to bear arms is an important right if for no other reason than it is expressly mentioned in the American Constitution.  My wife disagrees.  She believes that the American Founding Fathers’ viewpoint is important, but not controlling because time has made their worldview – their original intent – absurd.

You can see her argument best expressed here:

http://www.examiner.com/video

 

Gun control is a fairly hot topic, which is why my wife and I were discussing the topic while watching television last night.

The recent horrific shootings in Tuscon, Arizona are at the forefront of all of our minds. My wife is upset and believes Arizona should have more potent gun control regulations.  In the heat of our discussion she said “guns kill people.”

I was ready for that argument. “Blaming guns for killing people,” I retorted, “is like blaming spoons for obesity.”

I felt pretty good about that statement. It was eloquent and elegant, bordering on poetry.

We sat in silence a while, me feeling a bit smug, and then my wife said:

“Yeah, but if crazy people were running around killing 9 year old girls with spoons, I bet we would have some spoon control laws pretty quick.”

God, I love my wife.


“I WISH IS COULD TALK IN TECHNICOLOR…”

Posted in 3D, Art, Avatar, Brave New World, dada, Droit Moral, Fire and Ice, Hapax Legomenon, Isnt nature wonderful?, It's not what you think, Mad Men, Mad Scientists, Nichola Tesla, Paying Attention, Post Modern Knock-Knock Jokes, Pycho-Social Trauma, Research and Development, Rotwang, Science, Small Town America, The Matrix, The River of Time, Uncategorized, What are you sick or something? on January 18, 2011 by paulboylan

 

I just watched a video of an ordinary 1950’s housewife take LSD.   Here is what she looked like:


Here is the link:

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_thelookout/author-discovers-footage-of-50s-housewife-in-lsd-experiment;_ylt=Ap4VOiwZ343Im4WbTM5_Q9.s0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTVkOGlzZ3VjBGFzc2V0A3libG9nX3RoZWxvb2tvdXQvMjAxMTAxMTgvYXV0aG9yLWRpc2NvdmVycy1mb290YWdlLW9mLTUwcy1ob3VzZXdpZmUtaW4tbHNkLWV4cGVyaW1lbnQEY2NvZGUDbW9zdHBvcHVsYXIEY3BvcwM5BHBvcwM2BHB0A2hvbWVfY29rZQRzZWMDeW5faGVhZGxpbmVfbGlzdARzbGsDZm9vdGFnZW9mNTBz

 

I’m not sure what to say.

Can a cat collapse a wave function?

Posted in Art, Astronomy, Avatar, Brave New World, Mad Scientists, Nichola Tesla, Our animal friends, Paying Attention, Post Modern Knock-Knock Jokes, Science, Steampunk, The Matrix, The River of Time, Uncategorized on July 17, 2010 by paulboylan

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Of course they can. Absolutely. Anyone who believes otherwise has never known a cat.

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HEADLINE – TESTICLE FESTIVAL HUGE SUCCESTICLE

Posted in 3D, And now the snorting starts, Art, Astronomy, Avatar, Barry Goldwater, Battlestar Galactica, Brave New World, buffo, Cinema, Evil Smiley Face, Food, Fritz Lang, Globalization, greannmhar, Hapax Legomenon, Harvey Eisner, Hate Crimes, Headline, IN MEMORIAM, Internet Fun!, Is that really Ellie Goulding?, Isnt nature wonderful?, It's not what you think, Joseph Bleckman, kluchtig, lächerlich, Life, Mad Men, music, News, Nichola Tesla, скарлетт йоханссон, Our animal friends, Paying Attention, photograph, Photography, Pop Culture, Pycho-Social Trauma, Rage Against the Machine, Research and Development, Rotwang, Science Fiction, Small Town America, snaaks, Stargate Universe, Steampunk, Television, The Great State of Montana!, The Matrix, The River of Time, The Wrath of God, Travel, TV, مضحك, مضحکہ خیز, Website of the Week, Weird Stuff, What are you sick or something?, Why do people in other countries talk funny?, מצחיק, خنده, خنده دار, سكارليت جوهانسون scarlett johansson on June 15, 2010 by paulboylan

Photographer: Karen Combs 2010

Photographer: Karen Combs 2010

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OLEAN, MO. – The Olean Festival Commission has declared this year’s Testicle Festival to be most successful testicle festival in the 17 years that Olean has hosted a testicle festival. “Attendance this year broke all prior attendance records,” said Gunther Haas, the primary organizer of this year’s Testicle Festival. “People traveled from as far away as Henley to participate in the testicle themed festivities.”

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Good, clean testicle related fun.

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In addition to the many testicle related food items being offered, this year’s Testicle Festival featured a Testicle Festival Parade, a Testicle Festival Pancake Breakfast, with testicle shaped pancakes and free testicle shaped balloons for the kids, and a testicle eating contest.

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A number of testicle-themed rides and educational exhibits also contributed to this year’s Testicle Festival’s unprecedented success.

“We got a roller-coaster called the Testicle Express that is sure to give a thrill,” said Travis Jode, Honorary Mayor of Olean’s 17th Annual Testicle Festival. “And for the kids we have a giant testicle you can walk through and learn all about testicles.”

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But the one thing that sets this year’s Testicle Festival apart from all other testicle festivals was the variety of testicles offered for consumption.

“Bull testicles are great,” said Sue Ellen Plavin, this year’s Testicle Queen.


“But you can get bull testicles at any testicle festival.  That’s where we’re different.  At the Olean Testicle Festival you can enjoy all sorts of testicles ranging from goat and sheep and pig and turkey to more exotic testes like squirrel, possum and frog, which I can tell you are simply delicious.  And I hear tell that somewhere around here you can score some kangaroo balls,” Plavin said and smiled. “I bet you can’t get kangaroo ‘nads at the Russelville Testicle Festival. No siree bob.”

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Good, clean testicle related fun.

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