Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Ann Lewinson is a twit.*

A so-called film review used merely as a springboard for anti-mormon vitriol. She should lose her job. Look here to contact the paper and demand the following three changes:

1) The paper must publish an article censuring Ann Lewinson for her article.

2) The film review in question must be immediately pulled.

3) Ann herself must publish an apology.




*This was a difficult post to name. Other candidates were: "Ain't no cure for Crazy B*tch," and "As useless as a lesbian in the kitchen on Thanksgiving." I finally settled on a title, but had to change it for the sake of propriety. Let's just say "twit" was originally different by exactly one letter.

Monday, September 29, 2008

BAAAAAAAAAAARRRRFFF!!!

Sometimes there just isn't enough vomit in the world to do a thing justice. Steady your gorge and grab a basin, folks. It's gonna be a rough one.



Well, now that I'm sure you've all purged... I can only say that I would rather perform gay marriages myself than watch that monstrosity again. Note the alarmist tone behind the saccharine; do they mean to say that the big, scary homos are out to destroy their families? Really? Do they even know any gay people?

Here's my point. If you have thoughtful religious reason(s) for voting a certain way ("I believe x is wrong," "The prophet/bible says x is wrong," "The meatball on last night's spaghetti appeared to me in a vision and told me that the government is trying to steal my kidneys... oh, and also that x is wrong,") then to abandon those religious reasons and replace them with specious and alarmist secular reasons says something important. It suggests what value you place on the religious thought behind your political action: not much.

And so to you, Janice Kapp Perry, I say: grow a pair, be upfront, state your reasons––the rational ones... and, oh, PLEASE don't put it to music. My tender stomach thanks you in advance.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Oh bother...

Why do Mormons have such a hard time grasping basic principles of not looking like complete psychos? Honestly. Try to tone down the crazy, brothers and sisters... at least in public.

To wit: this bit of silliness. Is that honestly worth the trouble? Who comes off looking wild-eyed snake-dancing control-freak crazy? (Hint: it isn't the guy who made the calendar.) Obviously they didn't like the image of the church being sexed up, and that's okay (although, I think that it probably had a positive effect on missionary work... just sayin'), but if you're going to carry out disciplinary procedures because of "image" reasons, you ought to make sure that you aren't jumping out of the frying pan and into the sister-wives-and-kissin'-cousins fire. Honestly, President Davie, next time do you just want to call up the Associated Press and chant "Blood Atonement, Blood Atonement, Blood Atonement," into the phone? It would save the high council the trouble, and the "I'm-out-of-my-mind" PR message would be about the same.

It's the same thing with this. Yes, let's differentiate, but let's not look like we're stomping on the little guy (albeit the little guy with about 4 or 5 extra chromosomes as a result of freaky inbreeding). I mean, they do fall under the "Mormon" umbrella, so let's find an accurate way of distinguishing nomenclature. (Oh, and can we try not to say things like "[Real Mormons w]ear regular modern clothing and have contemporary hairstyles." That just sounds a wee bit "pot and kettle": "Oh sure, we believe in a Mother Goddess and that God dwells on a planet near a star called Kolob, and, yeah, we do think that if a ghost won't shake your hand, it's probably okay to listen to him and do what he says, and I shun diet coke like it's black tar herion, but we're not weird like those polygamous people." Besides, the hooker-hump hair thing that you see all over BYU campus may be contemporary, but it's gosh-awful. Girls could we stop that? It lengthens your face to the point that every time you open your mouth, I expect to hear Mr Ed neighing. Not attractive.)

Anyhow, that's enough for now. Just take it down a few notches, folks. We sound crazy enough without any help!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Stouffer's:
Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here

Hello, muffins, to one and all,

I thought I would say a few words about my new job: awful, dreadful, satanic.

Well, perhaps a few more than that. It is a DELIGHT (a not-very-subtle homage to Will Farrel as James Lipton). Today, I was working on a line which was purported to make "meatloaf." This is characteristic of the kind of creativity and nod-and-a-wink marketing that goes on here (remember, there is only one thing more deeply felt at Nestlé than their sense of the bottom line: their sense of irony) because today's product could neither be legitimately called either "meat" or "loaves."

The shape was something a bit lozenge-like, and about the size of two Reeses cups. Meat-like pods, really. Although, I have to admit that, given their dimensions, I can foresee a future scholarly study of Freudian themes in the commercial food world, because they were not-altogether-unpleasantly gonadal in appearance.

Now the actual ingredients that seem to have gone into making these––erm––doodads, were not immediately apparent; I wasn't looking at a recipe, you see. However, rest assured, my culinary acumen has neither faltered nor become tarnished with disuse, so I can now confidently say that the main ingredient used in this "product" (for want of a more accurate moniker) was basically the minced anal passages of rats and other unlucky members of the family Rodentia in the last throes of bloody-frothy-mawed hydrophobia, who had fed on the (surprisingly nutritious) remains of choleric Sudanese infants (made ever-so-luckily available for the purpose by Nestlé's marketing of infant formulas in various third world nations––see Google for all the sordid details).

Let me make it clear that the chefs at Nestlé have really outdone themselves. The aroma was incredible. Possessing a bouquet of lovingly-herb-flavored meatiness so intense, and fruity rectal top-notes so exquisite that within minutes tears and various other mucosal secretions were streaming down my face, and by the end of the day Ebola-magnitude bleeding had commenced from orifices various and sundry, it must simply be smelled to be believed. Indeed, that may not even be enough. Let's say rather that a sample of the proteinous slurry must be personally introduced by massive blunt force trauma into your olfactory glands using a steel ramrod propelled by a blasting cap to be believed.

In any case, once this singular sphincter chutney has been flavored to... (shall we say "perfection"? Not quite the right word) ...to the total destruction of all mankind's hope in the afterlife or any kind of loving deity, indeed, flavored to the the convincing of Jew and Gentile that the only god there could be in such a universe is Cthulhu and that HE DEMANDS SACRIFICE!, they add a little garlic, which rounds the whole thing out nicely I think. Then they put the mix through machinery which was found to fall almost, but not quite entirely, totally short of the safety and sanitation requirements for the automotive manufacturing industry (thus they were able to buy it at a discount). The "product" passes through a kind of scrotal press (I imagine), where it is extruded [1, see footnote] into it's characteristic shape. From there it goes into the ovens, where, with various members of minority groups, it is readied to be taken to the production line.

My job, for the first half of the day, was to take a rolling rack loaded with approximately 27 fifty-pound trays full of "product" from the still-zyklon-B-scented oven room to the line, where various other members of that most-unfortunate of minority groups (that is, Stouffer's employees) would place meat-pods, six at a time, into plastic trays that zipped along a conveyor belt at about one-and-one-half times the speed of what might be considered reasonable for a factory employing slaves paid (on a per-diem basis) only by the possibility of continued life, toward, at some purely hypothetical future date, a purely hypothetical customer, who is (purely hypothetically, mind) interested in purchasing a tray of what must seem to be six imitation bear testes.

During the second half of the day, I was––in part––making sure the fifty-pound trays got to all the required employees, and––in part––being one of the required employees to whom the trays got. Actually, that's not entirely accurate. I was not, myself, putting the knobs of protein into the plastic trays; I had masseuse duty. It is an odd fact that at Stouffer's the management requires all food to be massaged before it goes into cryogenic storage to await the creation of a market desperate and hungry enough to actually purchase said product. (Some of us suppose that mass suicides will become the norm before then, but there is no way of knowing whether some Stouffer's product may actually be the cheapest and most reliable form of suicide available––owing to the fact that cyanide poisoning and self inflicted gunshot wounds have a failure rate of 0.001% and 2% respectively, so cold storage seems prudent for the time being.) In any case, food massage is the order of the day. I have soothed lasagna noodles into baths of marinara and cheese for hours at a time, so I imagined the task today would not be too difficult. How wrong I was. And how wrong wrong wrong this task was. It was not so much a process of massage as it was of smashing into submission. As it turned out, possession of a Y chromosome totally disqualifies an employee from being an effective nugget masher. (I will let you draw your own conclusions about the subconscious psychology at play here. Let me just say that I was led to muse that some of these women might have been hired for this responsibility after simply judging the state of their husbands: if he seemed sufficiently cowed and servile, they could obviously do the job with an effective level of verve. I feel that the Lord has made His will clear about this, even in extenuating circumstances; See Deut. 25:11-12.) In any case, they had to be smashed flat into the tray so later on down the line they could be squirted with gravy or spermicidal mint jelly or something-or-other.

So that's my job. Awful, dreadful, satanic. Perhaps I should have just left it at that.
____________________________


[1] Note: It is a testament to the rather poetic brand of Sartrian philosophy behind the production here at Stouffer's that tissues, used in nature as extruders of feces, should be used in a culinary setting as extrusions of something far worse.

[2] Personally, I quite like the way this post turned out. Indeed, I think "fruity rectal top-notes" may be the finest three words I have ever committed to HTML.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Pardon me, but it seems that I'm not here,
or
Oh bother, my mind just broke.

Quick and strange thoughts before sleeping.

First off, you should not try to think about concepts like infinity or eternity. I think that doing so has just unhinged me. So don't read this post. I mean, really, navigate somewhere else or go make yourself a snack.

You've been warned!


...


Okay, now that those wussies are gone, it's time to get down to business:

I was thinking about exaltation tonight (eternal life/lives, whatever), and this is how I have understood it. There are an infinite number of intelligences. God or gods put them into spirit bodies. Some of those bodies eventually get physical bodies. Some of those will end up becoming like God and participating in his work. Clear enough? Everyone followed that? Good.

Now, here's my issue. Because God is love, eventually everyone that is of His species (no word for it really, but you know what I mean) gets a chance to become like him. All intelligences get the chance to be embodied and exalted. Some in each batch (like cookies) will not make it, but those that do become like God then add their manpower to the family business and "cookie making" proceeds at a greater rate. At an exponential rate, actually. Acceleration is the name of the game.

However, if we accept that 1) there is an infinite number of intelligences, and 2) God's process of apotheosis (deification) is carried out in finite batches, then we have trouble. Any finite number you subtract from infinity still leaves infinity. Therefore, there exists an infinity of intelligences that will be waiting for an infinite amount of time to become like God. However, an infinite amount of time is by definition a period that never ends. If you must wait an infinite period for your waiter to bring your meals to your table, you never get to eat. Ever. Mealtime never happens.

Thus we are now facing an infinite number of intelligences who will never get the chance to become like God.

Let's take this in a scarier direction. Express the problem as a ratio, or a division: finite:infinite or finite/infinite=functionally zero. Any number divided by infinity is NOTHING.

Ergo, we don't exist. Our existence is a total impossibility.

On the other hand, the fact that I am writing this is evidence that I exist. We cannot imagine our non-being, because the act of imagining itself implies being. Try to imagine traveling through the empty space of the universe, dodging stars or whatever. You never get to the end. Even if you run into an enormous, spheroid brick wall that encompasses all the space you have flown through, you can still take a hammer to the bricks and start making a dent. Either you eventually break through, or there is just more brick, but you can conceivably keep chipping away forever, never ceasing to move forward, albeit slowly.

Thus, ultimately, we cannot conceive of either finite space or time. That is, we cannot pass into non-being or annihilation. Existence cannot cease.

As it turns out, then, we can neither exist any more than we can not-exist. So we have two mutually exclusive impossibilities (which is, in itself, by definition, an altogether convoluted and impossible state of affairs).

Monday, June 23, 2008

Does it make me evil...

...if I tell you that this is simultaneously one of the funniest and most adorable things I have ever seen. (This is why I should never be a parent.)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Many Faces of Nicholas

Okay, so I found the coolest thing from the St. Andrew's website: an online face morpher! Truly cool stuff; just upload a photo and go to town. Here are some of the filters I've tried:
Nicholas as anime:

Nicholas as a scary baby:

Nicholas as an ape-man:

Nicholas as a Modigliani painting:

And, finally, my favorite:
Nicholas as an El Greco:

Oddly, the most frightening transformation I have not posted here. It was supposed to be a depiction of what I would look like as an older adult. As it turns out, there is enough red in my hair, and enough Israelite blood in my veins that I am going to become something less like Shylock, and rather more like Marlowe's "Jew of Malta." Truly unsettling in a very Fagin-esque way. I guess I just hope I die young.

That, or become an ape-man.

[This was inspired by a similar post on the blog 15 Minute Lunch. The language can be mature and the content unrefined, but he is seriously whoops-now-I'm-sitting-in-a-puddle funny. (Mom and Dad, you won't enjoy it. Sorry.) You've been warned, mind. Oh, and for those of you who have gotten it by email, he is responsible for the 1977 JC Penny Catalog (with commentary) viral.]

Monday, June 09, 2008

Thus it begins...


This is the start of my Marshall Plan: turn a mustache into a modest handlebar mustache, and thence into a wildly immodest handlebar mustache. Salvador Dali, eat your melting-clock-like heart out!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Status Update

Attn: All parties interested in the health of Nick's Commonwealth.

Measures taken have largely eliminated conflict in the North. However, guerrilla forces are still active on the Southern border.

Preparing for a reconnaissance mission, but it has yet to be scheduled--hopefully this week. The stealth of said operation is extremely questionable. (In other words, even if you're shooting cameras instead of guns, when a tank rolls into town, you can't help but notice.)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

PETA or Pita?

In a recent ad campaign––called "Holocaust on Your Plate"––the world's preeminent bastion of nutjobbery, PETA, has used graphic pictures to compare eating meat with the worst depredations against the Jews during the second World War.





Try as they might to hide behind the mask of animal rights, we know the darker message PETA is trying to send:
Jews are delicious!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Horrible, horrible, most horrible...

Dear reader, please do not read the following. Save yourselves and your children from the scars which will be etched permanently into your psyche. Cover their eyes as you would at the sight of the glistening detritus of an accident involving a train and a nursing home outing group.

For the past three days, I have been violently, desperately, hideously ill. Never did I understand all the ways in which agony could present itself. I spent, for instance, last night stretched out in the thrall of the most spectacular indigestion I could conceive. The burn of acid arpeggiating up and down my esophagus, while great waves––nay, tides––of nausea swept over me, threatening to drown me in their bilious depths. It was like a symphony of horror, in the scope of Mahler, but not in his style. Its composition was rather like that of Messiaen: delicate permutations of digestive dissonance, an intricate paean of suffering to the honor of an ancient and vindictive god. I tell you, if there were some drug which could induce pleasure in equal scope and variety, none of us would stop at selling children into horrible slavery, or passing offspring through the fires of Moloch to procure it.

Thus we are brought to the awful events of this morning, when, once again I offered violent and abundant offering to the porcelain deity, Commodus, and then spent more than five hours prostrate and unconscious on the floor of her temple.

Then, upon awakening, I said to myself, quite unexpectedly, "I think I may be an atheist now."

I understand, dear reader how one might wonder at this effect being brought on by an upset stomach. Yet, I must question, is that precisely the right word?

Upset? Yes, it was upset. Upset in the same way Vlad the Impaler had a reputation for being a bit brusque at times.

Upset? Yes, like Adolf-bloody-Hitler got a little cheeky with some Jewish acquaintances.

Upset? Nay, reader, say rather that my stomach has given us pretty solid evidence that god is dead, because I SEEM TO HAVE EATEN HIM!!!

Anyhow, I'm off to bed now. Hope you're all doing well.

XOXOXO

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Beards and Inadequacies














(I hope the title isn't too Freudian...)

Today, I had an epiphany. We were speaking in Elder's Quorum about the "weak and simple" and the feelings of inadequacy we might have. (We were also making quilts and knitting bandages for leper colonies. I am told that in Relief Society they grilled steaks and watched Gladiator.)

In any case, I found some of the comments most revealing:

"On my mission, I never got called to any positions of leadership. I always wondered what was wrong with me. Were my numbers not good enough? Did I need to baptize more?"

"In one district I served in there were five District Presidents in a row who went inactive after being released. They all said that they felt like they had been fired––like they hadn't done well enough in their callings."

There were many more comments along those same lines. It made me wonder what the problem was. And then, suddenly, it came to me.

I looked around and realized we were all dressed like businessmen. Suits, ties, white shirts, short hair. It could have been a board meeting. I'm willing to bet at least half of those in attendance own copies of Seven Habits of Highly Pretentious People. With our perverse focus on corporate image in the church, our preoccupation with looking the part, is it any wonder that we tend to look at success or failure in corporate terms?

"Were my numbers not good enough?" Why didn't I get the promotion?

"Why was I fired as District President?"

An unfortunate part of missionary work is acculturalization: making wards and stakes all over the earth in the image of Happy Valley. (For instance, consider the account I just read about missionaries in Japan spending an evening with the ward to teach them how to celebrate Halloween.) This conflation of American culture and corporate ideals with the gospel of Jesus Christ is nothing short of pernicious. I suspect that it is somewhat driven by the fact that many (most?) Mission Presidents tend to be successful businessmen or lawyers. They are, after all, the ones with the cash and leisure time to go serve in such a position. They have administrative experience.

Is it any wonder, then, that branches of The One Holy and Apostolic Church sometimes look and behave like little more than franchise members of McMormon, Inc.? ("Have it OUR way!")

Well, I, for one, won't stand for it. I hope, friends, that you will join with me in this rejection of corporate paradigms, and resist the subjugation of Consecration to Capitalism.

Of course, one is forced to ask the question: Would we be facing this problem if we had just kept the beards? I understand the desire not to look like hippies, but I think the greater challenges we face today demand that we not look like CEOs.

Join with me, brethren. Save the Church, and exercise your god-given right to scruff!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and ... Time?

There is something incalculably strange about the passing of time. It forces us to confront our almost absolute impotence. I remember breaking bad news to a loved one. It was long, long after the fact. Her reaction was mostly rage born of frustration. Rage because she couldn't change anything. Rage that was all the more strange because her knowing the bad news altered nothing apart from her awareness. The resulting circumstances had been lived with for years. Knowing the happening did not mean that the sad event had happened more forcefully or solidly. The event itself was not changed one whit.

The future is obscured by a veil, only becoming clear in the razor-wide incision we call now, which calcifies in the instant it is upon us, and becomes past. Yet, what we do with that razor's edge. Any action longer than a breath, a blink, an electric impulse shot down a nerve, the jostling of an atom, is built somehow on an untouchable sediment of past decision. By aiming a stream of constant change at the almost non-existent present we can sculpt what becomes the past. However, what good is that? Is the past of any value beyond it's faint reflection shining back onto our razor's edge? That reflection is all we may leave. It is all we will ourselves become.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Bothersome things...

Why do we call 47s to positions of responsibility? I'll never move into this guy's ward/stake. That's crazy. Perhaps I can find a nice school to transfer to... run by Jesuits or something. (Note the Stake President's comment. Ironic that it wouldn't have been an "issue" at all if he would pull his head out and be a reasonable human being.)

UPDATE:
The player was immediately reinstated as soon as the SL Tribune printed the story. Apparently, the Bishop was "inspired."

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

"God wants me to be president..." (?)

Voters in Arkansas and Tennessee learned tonight what happens when you vote for Mike Huckabee. If he ends up getting the nomination, I predict some real climate change problems!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Roe v. Wade (Why not just swim?)

In honor of the anniversary, here are some suggested Planned Parenthood slogans winnowed from the internet:


* Solving overpopulation––one person at a time

* Keeping minorities minorities

* Reach out and abort someone

* Have you dismembered your baby today?

* Betcha can't kill just one

* Doing our best to reduce class size

* Support your local Abortuary

* Keeping predatory males happy

* Have you plunged forceps into your kid today?

* Planned Parenthood––helping women find their inner genocidal maniac since 1916

* Planned Parenthood––because "Eugenics" doesn't sound as nice

* Planned Parenthood––We smell man-flesh!

* Flush your troubles away at Planned Parenthood

* Planned Parenthood––We See Small Dead People

* Planned Parenthood––because Jr's not a person yet

* Planned Parenthood––because you're out of hangers


What would you add to the list?

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

What's Wrong With the BYU Honor Code
and
How to Fix It

First, my apologies for the lengthy hiatus. I have many projects in the works just now (one of which is a Bachelor's Degree). I hope to atone somewhat with this lengthy portion of an essay. As always, mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. [Beats chest, dislodges phlegm.]

This will be, I think, the first in a series of posts on this issue, published whenever I feel most vexed about it. I imagine I won't be able to exorcise all the demons in one go, but we're going to give it a good try tonight.

And now, to the main event...

What is wrong:

1) The Honor Code is not a commandment, but BYUSA (hereafter "BYUSSR") doesn't let that keep them from billing it like one. I think their official story is that it came scrawled by the finger of God (or at least that of his childhood friend, Biff) on the back of the Decalogue. It is actually a creation of the student body of about 40 years ago as a reaction to the hippie culture prevalent at the time. (Remember, BYU used to hold PRO Vietnam War rallies: "Napalm a Gook-baby for Uncle Sam!") However, today most seem to be under the impression that it was a prophetic utterance, not merely a nice student-initiated idea.



For your edification, let me share a personal experience. Last semester, I needed to take a test on a Tuesday afternoon. It was the last time the test would be offered. I had been sick all weekend and through Monday. I rolled out of bed a few minutes before the test and raced to the computer testing center in the basement of the new Syphilis building (Joseph Fielding Smith Humanities Building, formerly Smith Family Living Center, or SFLC, thus, the "Syphilis"). I was scruffy. I went into the testing room and asked to take a test.

"I'm sorry," (she wasn't) said the co-ed in charge, "You need to be clean-shaven to take a test." She smiled just enough to showcase her dead, soulless eyes.

I explained my trouble. I felt like hell and looked worse (see photo of young man below). I had only come to school to take this test. If I missed my time-slot I would not be able to take it and I would fail my class.

"I'm sorry," she said. She wasn't. It was exactly the kind of "sorry" she would have offered had I asked if I might perform an abortion on her desk.

"Look, is there any way I can take this test?"

Now she was upset. She huffed, but eventually called her superior. He was a man, but he spoke just like his subordinate. I re-explained the situation. "So... you just want us to forget the rule?"

"No," I explained. "I want you to make an exception based on the extenuating circumstances I've just described [you extra-chromosome-wielding retardobeast*]."

"Lemme talk to [Susan**]."

Eventually, they let me take the test. It was just amazing that they were initially so unbending. Would it have been easier to ask for his right testicle? Probably. I know it would have been easier to get [Susan**]'s.


*I wish I had used this line.
**Her name has been struck from my memory and––I hope––the Book of Life.





2) The Code ("...well, the code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules...") conflates many different regulations of vastly different value. "Remember to shave" is preached cheek by jowl with "No premarital hanky-panky." This is doubly detrimental as it seems to suggest that scruffiness is akin to fornication (of course some of my fellow zoobies would have a hard time seeing the difference between drinking a Diet Coke and injecting black tar heroin straight into your brain tissues through your eye). The awful part is that subconsciously something as trivial as facial hair might lesson the seriousness of adultery. (Let's not forget to mention the delicious irony that, based solely on dress and grooming code violations, Karl G. Maser, Brigham Young, and Jesus Christ would all be barred from entering the testing center. Adolf Hitler, on the other hand, would be admitted with his neatly trimmed mustache!)

3) BYU students are consistently told how wonderful they are. How sober, how bright, how upright, how honest. Of course they're just blowing smoke up or out of assorted orifices. How can we tell?

The testing center.

Whereas in other Universities their (obviously less-trustworthy, Gentile) students are expected and trusted to take multi-hour, closed-book exams in a take-home situation (Princeton is one example. Of course if you're blowing over thirty G's (!) a year you'd be an idiot not to try and get your money's worth) at BYU, on the other hand, where honesty was patented, students take most of their tests in a lead-roofed chamber of horrors, with proctors––strung out on Postum––practically fogging students' glasses with their fetid breath. (I swear I've had my neck licked in there a couple of times. You can tell when they're hungry because they click their enormous foot-claws against the floor more rapidly. Wait! Is that freshman using a calculator? Their furtive chirping helps the pack to triangulate as they close in on the unsuspecting youth. Don't try to help. He is lost now. Reduced in moments to a trembling mass of glistening pink. One less returns to the DT tonight.)

Tell me, if BYU students are so obviously superior and so intolerably honest, then why do they need such close supervision from the reptilian guardians of the testing center?