Category Archives: Thoughts at Large

•  Donald Trump: fake president, real prick.  Donald Trump: no leader of the free world, but the world’s cheerleader for vile remarks.  Donald Trump: vainglorious minus the glory.

•  I keep thinking I’ll get Donald Trump out of my system, but he lingers on like a bad case of pinworms.  Not that I’ve had pinworms, but you come up with a better analogy.

•  My wife is furiously typing on her laptop, and she turns to me and asks how one spells unaesthetic.  My reply was, can you just say ugly?

•  My 80/80 Facebook Rule: Even taking into account the 80% of things that one decides  it is better not to comment on, 80% of what remains is still better not to comment on.

•  And the remarks I decide not to post on Facebook?  80% of them wind up in this blog.

•  My spouse often asks me to “dust the tops of things” before company arrives.  I cannot recall a time when I was asked to dust the bottoms of things.  So when you visit our place, please don’t look there.

•  It is my firm belief — maybe even extra-firm — that pillowcases have been designed for planned obsolescence, and zippers are the weak link.   The only reasons I have ever thrown out a pillowcase are because the zipper tab falls off or the zipper gets stuck or breaks down somewhere along its short pillowy highway.  Are zippers made by Chrysler?

•  Speaking of planned obsolescence, what is it about supermarket raspberries?  Once you bring them home, you have (at most) 36 hours to eat them before they start getting moldy, even when refrigerated.  I suspect that someone at the berry packaging plant is responsible for spraying spores on them prior to shipment.

• pork rinds I went to the Southern States farm supply store last week to buy some bird seed.  (They have great prices on safflower seed, a cleaner and cheaper alternative to sunflower seed).  Waiting at the checkout, I saw these pork rinds.  Not just any old pork rinds but microwave pork rinds.  The feeling crept over me that I was out of my element here.

•  I was saddened by the senseless assassination of NYPD officer Miosotis Familia.  Her yet-another wanton and random death was not a carefully-thought-out act of some evil, affluent, philosophical mastermind, but instead the pressure-cooked product of poverty, alienation, neglect, a cacaphony of messages, guns sloshing around like oxycodone, and a culture of untethered survival that most of us don’t even begin to understand.

•  Those of you who would prefer that thoughts expressed here would be happy thoughts: there are times for escape and times for engagement.  Thanks for reading.

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Thoughts @ Large: 46

• Why are short forks called salad forks?  Why are salad forks shorter than other forks?  Are lightweight forks somehow appropriate for lightweight food?  Why would one need a fork that is shorter than regular forks?  The better to jab thin people with?

• One full slot in every American’s silverware drawer is wastefully devoted to salad forks.  This takes up precious space that could otherwise be used for chopsticks, poultry lacers, rubber pot-scrapers and rectal thermometers.

• You know, I was just thinking the other day.

• I may turn out to be a very bad grandfather.  I can’t seem to watch children at play without imagining all the ways they could hurt themselves, which naturally makes me want to constrain their play.  Good thing I was not my own grandfather — otherwise I would not have gained such an appreciation for dangerous things.

• Perhaps I should take heart that, on Antiques Roadshow 3000, my works of art will be best-known for having been made during the Trump Dynasty.

• Every sound-effects team in Hollywood should be fired.  One film after another persists in accompanying all blows with thundering deep bass tones and all fast-moving objects with cavernous whooshes.  Such sonic clichés should be banned, never rewarded.

• One of my favorite expressions is, “Excuse my French.”  (It so often needs excusing.)

• I am really getting tired of getting directed to some Pinterest site whenever I click a link.  I will never sign up for Pinterest, never, ever.  If the internet is so smart, they would have figured this out by now and they would stop sending me to Pinterest.  Goober Pyle and me, we’re just going to sit here and play checkers in the repair shop until the internet fixes this.

• I call them thunderstorms but many others refer to them as electrical storms.  I would be interested to know whether there is a cultural or geographic locus for the designation electrical storm.  There’s something about that name that pays tribute to the primitive forces of nature.  The more documentary thunderstorm falls short on that count.

• I am not a fascinating person.  As evidence of this, my conversations with others always  seem to last much longer when I engage them in discussion about themselves.

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•  Most would agree that the beauty of a butterfly’s wings more than compensates for the defoliation caused by its offspring.  Donald Trump would have us think this works in the opposite direction as well — that having beautiful offspring somehow makes up for his own destructive behavior.

•  The spring flowerlets of scotch broom smell wonderful — our bumblebees love them.  The branches laden with their tiny cup-like flowers fall gracefully over our boulder wall.  And like most things special, their display lasts only a week or two.  Then, poof.  And our fickle bumblebees fly off to the next enticing fragrance.

•  I would like to see just one New York/Hollywood/Nashville female celebrity show up at an awards show or other similar gala wearing a burka.  What famous American woman would dare make such a bold non-fashion statement?

•  Not that I think burkas are a feminist statement — just the opposite.  But neither is designer celebrity-wear a feminist statement, but a beauty-entitled one.

•  Why does a Brandy Alexander taste delicious but the very thought of a Wine Alexander turn the stomach?   After all, brandy is simply distilled wine, right?  (For the uninitiated, the Brandy Alexander recipe calls for 1 oz brandy, 1 oz cream, and 1 oz crème de cacao.)  The thought of blending wine, cream and crème de cacao is, or should be, unthinkable.

•  There is an alternate universe in which hundreds of people see me as highly creative and faithfully read my blog — and even read it a second time to make sure they get all the little juicy bits I include.  And then there is the universe everyone but me seems to live in.

•  I never guessed I would be looking up the difference between axioms, postulates and  theorems at age 64 years, 54 days.  I figured I left all that behind me on my last day of high-school geometry.  But one’s interests evolve over time.  Who knows, one day I may finally open my set of pastels and produce something that my children will argue over:  “Dad’s pastel belongs in your house.”  “No, it really belongs in yours.”

•  And I never thought, at age 21 years, 43 days, that I would one day be poring over papers about dark matter and dark energy, which together make up far more of our universe than the ordinary atoms that comprise you and me and the computer display that connects us, as well as the planet we live on, the sun we orbit and the stars we gaze upon.  Fifty years after I was born, astronomers and physicists discovered that the stuff we can touch and see and breathe — so-called baryonic matter — represents less than one-twentieth of the total energy of our universe.  I find this tiny ratio humbling.

•  You, whether you are one of faith or no faith at all, will no doubt one day find yourself standing in a church pew during a service — probably a memorial service — whose tenets you do not follow.  Inevitably, while you are standing in that pew to pay your respects, the communion tray gets passed to you, and you have to decide whether to participate or just smile and pass it to the next person in the pew.  Either choice feels wrong, ethically or socially.  If only that damn tray had not been handed to me!  Why was I forced to choose?

And so go many of the so-called choices we face, in church or out.

•  Just as elevators in many hotels travel directly from the 12th to the 14th floor without pausing at the 13th, the sequence of U.S. Presidents is apparently skipping from the 44th to the 46th.  Thoughts at Large will respect this numbering.  The last edition was No. 44 and the next edition will be No. 46 — but the one you are now reading will forever reside on the 13th floor.

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