Caption: That's what I'm talking about.
El Cabrero was prepared to write a scathing critique of the commercialism and materialism of the Christmas holiday and how sad it is that we seek fulfillment in the accumulation of toys and gadgets--but I've been forced to cancel previously scheduled blogging to make the following urgent announcement:
Me got BIG chainsaw for Christmas! Yeah, man...
It was from La Cabra.
I had a little one before but this one puts the power in power tool. I feel much better about myself as a person as a result.
But it's not all Freudian symbolism. I live far enough out in the sticks where a chainsaw is a basic accessory to transportation and sometimes a necessary precondition thereto. Then there's the whole wood stove thing, which is a plus this time of year, not to mention any number of other activities which Marx referred to under the rubric "the idiocy of rural life."
But you know, in fairness to President Bush, who has been criticized here with something like clockwork regularity, there's something to be said for spending a weekend every now and then cutting brush at the ranch.
But this Christmas wasn't all about materialism. There was also time for infantile humor. La Cabra and I attended services at a local Episcopal church where we were delighted to hear no less than two hymns sung that included the word "ass." That was awesome.
Oh yeah, then there was family stuff.
All in all, it wasn't a bad Christmas. I hope yours was OK too.
SPEAKING OF CHRISTMAS, here's the latest edition of Jim Lewis' Notes From Under the Fig Tree, which includes reflections about the same as well as a new word for our vocabularies: pronoia. Check it out.
ANIMAL STEROID SCANDAL. It's not just baseball players--this NY Times article shows that birds and bugs are using chemicals to enhance performance too:
Frown though we may on steroid-style supplementation as cheating, or as competitiveness taken to unsporting and unnatural extremes, in nature such pious niceties do not apply. In nature, as the saying has it, it’s not whether you win or lose, it’s whether you win — and animals will do or ingest the most outrageous, dangerous, blechy things in their quest for victory.
Egyptian vultures consume large amounts of cow and goat dung to extract traces of plant pigments that will turn the birds’ pasty faces a sexually alluring shade of mustard. A male goat will demonstrate his ardor for a nanny by drinking her urine and soaking his beard and belly in his own. Hedgehogs, according to the new “Book of Animal Ignorance,” will gnaw on the skin of poisonous toads to incorporate the amphibian toxin into its saliva, which it spits up and down its spiny frame until it is virtually immune to predation. Hedgehogs are so eager to coat themselves in foul chemicals, it seems, that they’ve been known to start salivating and self-anointing at the merest whiff of odiferous items like cigar butts, furniture polish, boiled fish and, I’m sorry to report, coffee beans.
Why don't they just get a BIG chainsaw?
EDUCATION, INCOME, EARNINGS AND WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT. Here's my suggestion as presented in a Gazette-Mail op-ed this past Sunday.
GOAT ROPE ADVISORY LEVEL: ELEVATED