October 30, 2003


Gone for another weekend. This time it's Et-lanna, Georgia. Next week, the blog will have a whole new look thanks to Jen, whose aesthetic sensibilities are capable of overcoming the most inert inertia. The blog's content is guaranteed to suck every bit as much, though.

Posted by Mr Green at 11:33 PM | Comments (3)

My Boss Loves Michael Bolton

It's confirmed. I walked by his office this morning on the way to mine and heard Bolton wailing "How Am I Supposed To Live Without You" in that distinctive, agonizingly strained way of his that makes you think he has a 50-pound barbell plate tied to his genitalia, which he lets drop when he has to sing a particularly high part. Sure it hurts. But an artist sometimes has to make sacrifices for his art.

Anyway, the bossman just looked up and said "hi" to me. All casual, as though he were engaged in some sort of normal, wholesome, non-humiliating activity instead of listening to Michael Bolton.

I had to go listen to about 10 minutes of James Brown just to feel okay again.

Posted by Mr Green at 08:54 AM | Comments (4)

October 29, 2003

Is It Real or Is It The Onion?

Could these people be any more full of themselves? The reason the Middle East is a cesspool of ancient hatreds is... an insufficient amount of Hollywood celebrity involvement?

Calm will be brought about by the soothing powers of Jennifer Aniston's rack. Brad Pitt will bring his fashionable stubble to bear on the issues. Yes. The solution is at hand. Why didn't anybody think of this sooner?

(link via IMAO)

Posted by Mr Green at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)

October 24, 2003


This weekend will be an enforced absence from blogging, the Internet in general, and even from using a computer at all. Mrs. Green and I are meeting some friends and spending the weekend at a cabin in a state park, where there is running water and electricity, and even a television, but no phone and no cell phone reception. We spent a weekend there last year, and the most wonderful thing about it was the complete absence of noise. Living in a city, you forget how much ambient noise there is. Planes, trains, trucks, buses, sirens, car alarms, the ever-present bass thump from a Chevy Cavalier decorated with tasteless decal work and a neon purple license plate frame being driven by a suburban white boy who thinks that making people a mile away aware that he’s listening to an angry black man yelling to a beat makes him a 21st century James Dean and not a suburban white boy in a cheap car with an expensive stereo, my idiot neighbor screaming for the third time today at his wife/girlfriend/babymomma/whatever about how she’s such a stupid bitch, and yes she is a stupid bitch, and she needs to shut up, and he’s getting sick and tired of this shit, and whatever else it is he expounds on after I turn up the TV. At the park – silence. You can sit on the patio and have a scotch and a cigar and hear nothing but the wind and the occasional animal sound. You can even see stars, because there’s no light. Perfect.

See you next week.

Posted by Mr Green at 09:52 AM | Comments (3)

October 23, 2003

Funny Shit

This almost made me shoot Diet Pepsi out my nose. Representative line (and cornerstone of my personal credo): "I'm not sure ass-first with cheeks akimbo is the best way to arrive in Australia."

If you can read this list of favorites from his site without laughing, then you are deceased. Lie down already.

Posted by Mr Green at 10:01 AM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2003

Maybe I Need to STFU

My essay inspired by the discussion of Barbara Ehrenreich’s book “Nickled and Dimed in America” is finally at that magical point where I need to set it down and come back to it with fresh eyes or I’ll never finish it. The damned thing keeps trying to be about everything in the world, and I keep having to ask myself how the hell I ended up talking about the influence of 16th century social mores on the proliferation of Crest toothpaste varieties, or whatever. Highlight paragraph, delete. From writing this I have learned that the difference between writing a couple of paragraphs about something and writing a long essay is not a difference in scale, it’s a difference in kind. At least it is for me. At 3400+ words it has entered the realm of the DenBestean. If I don’t take extraordinary measures to choke it off, it may become Whittlesque, and for a guy who’s only contribution to human wisdom is the line “nothing good ever comes from talking”, that’s clearly uncharted territory. Your continued patience, gentle reader, is much appreciated.

Posted by Mr Green at 09:58 AM | Comments (1)

October 21, 2003

Humor Is Funny

From the archives of The Onion:

Marxists' Apartment A Microcosm Of Why Marxism Doesn't Work

Posted by Mr Green at 02:12 PM | Comments (0)

October 20, 2003

Chicks Dig Me

Since I have nothing thoughtful to contribute today, I'll tell a touching story from my past that will illustrate how pathetic I am.

In grad school, I had a particular instructor for two classes in consecutive semesters. I'll call him Ken. He has this very droll sense of humor, and he and I would frequently banter in class. He has this idiosyncratic way he likes for papers to be written, so to save time he would have people who had been in one of his classes before serve as group leaders, so they could make sure the group papers would get written according to his format.

So in my second class with him, there were about six of us who had been through the drill before, and sometime around the third or fourth class session he had us all stand up so the other students could volunteer to be in our groups. "Who wants to be in So-and-so's group?" he would ask, and people would raise their hands. So he went through all of us, and several people volunteered to be in my group. As he was writing down the names of the people in each group, he got this evil smile on his face and said, "Hey Mr. Green. Did you notice that none of the women want to be in your group?" And it was true. Mine was the only group that was all male.

I replied, "You know, Ken, actually that *had* escaped my attention. But thanks for pointing it out. If anybody needs me I'll be in the men’s room, hanging myself with my belt." Good times…

Posted by Mr Green at 10:04 PM | Comments (2)

October 17, 2003

Troll Deinfestation

JadeGold / MacDiva or whatever it's calling itself these days has pissed in the pool one too many times and is now banned. Any further comments by it will be deleted or edited, depending on my whim.

Posted by Mr Green at 04:43 PM | Comments (3)

October 15, 2003


I actually have an active comment thread here. And I had over 50 visitors today for the first time. I feel like I should offer everybody something to drink...

Posted by Mr Green at 10:20 PM | Comments (9)

Talk about a bad day

I just deleted a post with a picture of the guy who interfered with the foul ball in the Cubs game last night. One of the local papers saw fit to publicize the guy's name, age, the town he lives in, the name of the youth baseball team he coaches for, and the name of his employer. They did at least allow that he's a die-hard Cubs fan.

He's going to have enough trouble on his hands, so I took that post down. I hope everybody leaves the poor bastard alone, but I'm not an optimist about human nature.

Posted by Mr Green at 11:21 AM | Comments (5)

October 14, 2003


I just watched a fan interfere with a foul ball that Alou would have caught, the Cubs shortstop Gonzalez drop a sure double-play ball, and the Marlins get two hits off Mark Prior and all of a sudden the game's tied at 3 in the top of the 8th.

No, wait. Now the Cubs are losing 8-3. That's amazing. That's really, really amazing. Prior was absolutely cruising. I didn't believe in the Cubs Curse before, not really. But I believe it now, and I'll bet the Cubs players believe it too. No way the Cubs come back from this loss and win tomorrow.

And there's no way I'm watching that game. I'm getting sick just thinking about it.

Posted by Mr Green at 09:33 PM | Comments (1)

October 11, 2003

Rant Forthcoming

I have a lot to say about this post, particularly the presumptuous and condescending comments directed at Heather. After I fulfil my spousal promise to clean up the horrid pit I call an office, I will be working on it.

But for now, let us meditate on the following truth: Life is not fair.

No, really. Take a minute and think about it.

Okay. That’s it for tonight. G’night everybody. And go Cubs!

10/19 UPDATE: When I applied Troll-B-Gone to this post, it vaporized all of the troll's droppings. Not a bad thing, but it makes the rest of us look like we're insane, because the things to which we were replying are no longer there.

So I am going to edit the post to include the substance of the troll's comments, without the insulting trollishness. And I'm almost done with the essay I intended to write before I let myself get sucked in to arguing with the troll. It will be up soon.

Posted by Mr Green at 11:30 PM | Comments (11)

October 09, 2003

Something smells.

Chicago and the suburbs have been stinkified by a garbage collectors strike for the past nine days. A few places (like our apartment complex, thank God) have been serviced by trucks driven by supervisors at the trash hauling companies. But most people have just had it piling up.

Now, I understand that while garbage collection is not what one would call a mentally demanding job, it is also a pretty unpleasant one. So I wouldn't expect it to be at or near the minimum wage. But then, I wouldn't expect it to be the gateway to wealth, either.

These people, represented by the Teamsters, were making $10 to $21 an hour before their contract expired. This strikes me as a little high on the top end - I don't know why an experienced trash collector should be paid more than 100% higher than a new one. They struck because they were not offered a big enough increase. The strike paid off for them, because a federal mediator persuaded the Chicago Area Refuse Haulers Association to accept the Teamsters offer of a 28% increase in pay and benefits over five years.

Now, I don't know about you. Maybe things are different where you are. But from where I sit, making up to $56K a year before overtime to pick up the trash might damn well induce me to change careers, if I didn't already have tens of thousands of dollars in education and 10 years of experience invested in this one that just got me above the new top-end garbageman threshold fairly recently.

Labor unions used to have a purpose back in the day when a mining company representative could shoot you if you didn't care to go down into an unsafe coal mine. But now they're all about legalized extortion. In fact, I did a very informative Google search on Teamsters violence. Among the 18,100 hits was this NRO article by Deroy Murdock, which explains:

In the 1973 U.S. v. Enmons case, the Supreme Court exempted unions from the 1946 Hobbs Anti-Extortion Act, which forbids the obstruction of interstate commerce through violence or blackmail. Thanks to the Enmons loophole, organized labor can escape federal Hobbs Act prosecution, provided its mayhem furthers "legitimate union objectives," such as higher wages. At least 15 states similarly shield labor brutality.

That's right, kids! Union goons can beat you to death for crossing a picket line and the feds and 15 states say that's A-OK! As long as your beating serves their objectives, that is. Imagine how the world would be different if bank robbers had a similar loophole.

Criminal: Your Honor, I swear I was not going to give any of that money to the poor. I was going to keep it all for myself.
Judge: Well, all right then. Not guilty.

I can't imagine what it would be like to be in a position where I had to choose between putting food on my family's table and getting beaten, maybe killed, by thugs who would escape prosecution. This is so obviously a hideous perversion of justice that I think I'd buy a shotgun, blow away any of the bastards who came within 10 feet of me, and take my chances with a jury.

Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) introduced a bill that would close the federal loophole, the Freedom from Union Violence Act. The bill was referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary in April 2003, and sent along to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security in May, where it has sat ever since. Now, I'm no expert on the workings of Congress, but I have to suspect that it's deader than Nixon. And even if it makes it to a vote, it very well might not pass. As Murdock asks rhetorically:

Will compassionate Democrats help stop this savagery, or will they wink at the thuggery practiced by too many unionists? After all, labor gave Democrats $89,882,124 for the 2002 elections, vs. $6,441,332 to Republicans (or 93 vs. 7 percent of donations), reports the Center for Responsive Politics' opensecrets.org campaign-finance database. Unions also gave Democrats generous, undeclared in-kind contributions.

Why is it that I never knew about this? I’ll bet most people don’t know about the Enmons loophole. Forget black quarterbacks, I think this is a real media conspiracy.

Posted by Mr Green at 09:17 PM | Comments (1)

October 07, 2003

Why bother?

Ever wonder how it would be if you had this great idea for an invention, you've just about got it worked out in your head, and then right as you're about to set to work constructing a system of ropes, pulleys, and levers that will allow you to change the channel on your TV without leaving your chair, you find out that somebody has already come up with this thing called a "remote control"?

Well, that's how I felt about my dormant Michael Moore bashing project when I read this (from Instapundit). He does it so much better than I would have that there's no point in me adding anything beyond an Instapunditesque "heh".

Posted by Mr Green at 12:10 PM | Comments (0)

Pat Robertson, STFU!

From Instapundit, pointing to the Washington Post:

"He started off playing a chauffeur in 'Driving Miss Daisy,' and then they elevated him to head of the CIA, and then they elevated him to president and in his last role they made him God. I just wonder, isn't Rush Limbaugh right to question the fact, is he that good an actor or not?"

-- Pat Robertson on his "700 Club" television show, using the example of black actor Morgan Freeman to defend Limbaugh's jab at Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb.

Now the media have gone too far. Everybody knows God is white, as proven by this photograph Pat Robertson took on vacation.


Posted by Mr Green at 08:44 AM | Comments (0)

October 06, 2003

Happy Happy Joy

I almost got away with one at work today, but I was busted and forced at gunpoint to sign up for a mandatory day-long diversity training for managers. I was thinking about telling my boss to just go ahead and shoot me, but then I remembered that I'd like to hear Michael Bolton sing live before I die, so I just went with it. (Note: That was a joke. I would rather eat barbed wire and wash it down with a nice tall glass of Drano than listen to even 5 minutes of that no-talent assclown.) (Second note: Michael Bolton, Kenny G, and Yanni will have a band together in Hell. Bank on it.)

I suppose the training may prove handy if my one direct report starts to exhibit multiple personality disorder, rendering obsolete my current strategy of dealing with her as a unique individual. But then again, that would presuppose that this particular diversity training would differentiate itself from every other one I've ever attended by imparting some actual useful information.

About 15 minutes after I signed up I was getting good and pissed off about it, and I composed the following e-mail to my boss:

Isn't my feeling that this is a gigantic waste of time a legitimate dimension of my personal diversity? Shouldn't the organization therefore prove its commitment to the tenets of diversity, respect my individual differences from institutional norms, and exempt me from attending?

Oh yeah. Attitudes toward the validity of the "diversity" paradigm are exempt from the doctrines thereof, and any deviation from the received truth concerning the value of said doctrines is to be considered counter-revolutionary. I almost forgot.

Then I canceled it without sending it because, hell, the poor bastard has enough problems as it is without being subjected to my sense of "humor" any more than necessary. And besides, he's pretty into all that touchy-feely crap and would probably get his feelings hurt. He's a nice guy, in a sensitive, ponytail-having kind of way. I tried talking to him once about Michael Bolton being one of Satan's minstrels, and I got the distinct impression that he liked Bolton.

Come to think of it, the damned training was probably his idea...

Posted by Mr Green at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

October 05, 2003

What the...

Purdue crushed Illinois 43-13. Indiana lost to Michigan State 31-3. The Bears came from behind to beat Oakland 24-21. The Cubs beat Atlanta 5-1 to advance to the National League Championship Series. The only reason Notre Dame didn't lose is that they didn't play this weekend.

In other news, all the losses my Little League team ever had were retroactively reversed, Mrs. Green told me that she would be perfectly happy to be the first member of my harem, and the winning lottery numbers were announced as, "whatever Mr. Green's ticket says."

Posted by Mr Green at 10:36 PM | Comments (1)

October 02, 2003

Shut The Fuck Up

“Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.” – Abraham Lincoln

“Nothing good ever comes from talking.” – Mr. Green

Today I'd like to start a new Mr. Green feature. It's called "Shut The Fuck Up" (STFU). Like everything here, it is humbly offered as a public service. The idea is that although all Americans have a First Amendment right to speak out, many of us should just do ourselves a favor and STFU. This especially applies to celebrities who choose to speak publicly in an authoritative fashion about matters outside their area of expertise. An example would be Sheryl Crow. I think she's a great singer and songwriter, and any time she has something to say about music I'll gladly listen. But when she sagely observes that “the best way to solve problems is not to have enemies”, she sounds like a hippie half-wit. Yeah, Sheryl, that worked really well for Europe when they were dealing with Nazi Germany.

Frenchman: You can't invade France! We refuse to have you as an enemy! [Screams while being run over by Panzer]
German soldier: Damn. I hate cleaning those guys out of the treads.

Great insight. Oh, and Sheryl? STFU.


Today I have two people who should take my advice and STFU: Chicago Bears rookie cornerback Charles Tillman and professional blowhard / amateur football commentator Rush Limbaugh.

Our second-place STFU winner in this inaugural edition is Tillman. Now, in case any of you out there are not sports fans, take my word that the Bears are, top to bottom, the worst team in professional sports. After their latest ass-whuppin, at the hands of the Packers, hugely-paid cornerback R.W. McQuarters opined that the fans should not have been booing. This coming from a man who was beaten so badly on one Packer touchdown that he was barely in the TV picture with the guy he was covering when he caught the pass. Booooooo!! McQuarters later remembered where the money comes from to overpay him, and backed away from his comments.

And into the void leaped Tillman, who wisely decided to criticize the long-suffering fans who make his enormous paycheck possible. From the Chicago Tribune: "I try not to pay attention to the fans. Not to talk bad about them, but some of them don't really know anything about it, they just go to watch for entertainment. If you know a little bit about the game, you should know if [quarterback Kordell Stewart] throws one interception, he's not sorry or if coach [John] Shoop calls a play on this down and everyone starts to boo him … you know, I'd like to see those people be put in his situation. Don't knock it till you try it."

Okay, Charles. Let’s clarify. When I say that Brian Urlacher, to call out the team’s best player, looks very average when the opponent gets a blocker on him, it’s not that I think I can square off against an NFL guard who weighs 300+ pounds and can bench press a Cadillac. I would get nothing but squashed. I get paid nothing to play professional football, and I’m worth every penny.

But Urlacher, who will make more money to play football this season than I will make in my entire working life (over $15 million), should be expected to perform like an all-pro. And so far this season, he hasn’t.

As for Shoop, to paraphrase Thomas Sowell’s remark on book editors: The fact that he is still breathing is evidence that the death penalty deters.

In any event, if the team continues to play as badly as they have the first three games, boos will be the least of their worries. I hope they’re checking the season ticket holders for weapons before they let them in the stadium. Including the personal seat licenses the team sold to finance their (small) financial contribution to the new stadium (which appropriately looks like a giant toilet), these people paid over a thousand dollars each for their tickets this year. They have every right to make their feelings known. Charles, I know a certain person who needs to STFU. Hey, what do you know! It’s you!


Our top STFU scholar is Rush Limbaugh. He was hired by ESPN as a football commentator because he is an allegedly knowledgeable football fan, he is famous, and (most importantly) he is controversial. ESPN got all the controversy they wanted and then some when Limbaugh opened his mouth about Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb. McNabb has gotten off to a slow start this season, but was a two-time Pro Bowler in his first four seasons and a runner-up for league MVP in 2000. He’s really, really good. But Limbaugh orally shat thusly: “I think what we've had here is a little social concern in the NFL. The media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well. There is a little hope invested in McNabb, and he got a lot of credit for the performance of this team that he didn't deserve. The defense carried this team.”

Quick diversion: I was thinking recently about Indianapolis QB Peyton Manning, who has gotten a lot of criticism in Indy for not being perfect. The truth is, Manning is one of the best in the league. I was trying to think who I’d rather have than Manning if I were starting a team from scratch. I only came up with three I’d even consider: Mike Vick, Brett Favre, and Donovan McNabb.

Limbaugh has since resigned from ESPN because of the firestorm of criticism over his remarks, but insists that racism had nothing to do with them, and that in fact the outcry proves he’s right about the media wanting to hype McNabb.

That might be true, if McNabb were the first-ever black quarterback in the NFL. But Doug Williams led Washington to a Super Bowl win in 1988. And Warren Moon posted the league’s third highest all-time number of passing yards and completions, and fifth highest all-time number of touchdowns. Current black NFL quarterbacks I’d count as above-average to great are McNabb, Daunte Culpepper, Mike Vick, Aaron Brooks, and Steve McNair. Other black QB’s who IMO are average at best (and somehow don’t get hyped by the media – hmmmm) include Charlie Batch, Jeff Blake, Tony Banks, Kordell Stewart, and Shaun King. I know there are more black QB’s, past and present, but I’m too lazy to research this. And I think the list above is enough to prove my point. McNabb gets the hype because he deserves it. If it were about the color of his skin, I’d see Tony Banks in those stupid chunky soup commercials.

To say McNabb didn’t deserve the credit he got is nonsense. To say that there’s some media conspiracy to elevate him because he’s black is nonsense too. I think Limbaugh is not as knowledgeable as he thinks he is about football and/or he’s more racist than he thinks he is. From where I sit, it looks like a good deal of both.

Of course, he’s just given legitimate fuel to the people who see racism everywhere. I had just recently joked to someone that racism must be over. After all, how bad can things be when the worst thing Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas could think to complain about was that there were not enough “black” names given to hurricanes? Well thanks, Rush. You just proved me wrong. And you’ve reinforced the prejudices of all the people who think that anybody who doesn’t vote a straight Democratic ticket is a closet bigot.

Rush Limbaugh, for your contributions to the field of being a jackass, please come up and get your STFU trophy: A roll of duct tape. I’ll just wrap it around your head a few times, completely covering your mouth…. There. All done. And here’s your bonus kick in the ass. Now get the fuck out of here. And next time, remember to STFU!

Posted by Mr Green at 10:00 AM | Comments (4)