December 22, 2011

Last zombie word...for a while

It seems vaguely inappropriate to mention zombies in yet another blog post this close to Christmas, but I received some important correspondence after yesterday's tongue in cheek post (which is here).

A friend of mine wrote to tell me that, in the event of a zombie apocalypse, more than one website recommends the khukuri knife as a means of neutralizing the walking dead and thus staying off their menu.

If you don't believe me, click here and here.

I filed this knowledge away for future reference in the event of a mass zombie outbreak. (It turns out that said friend actually gave me a khukuri a while back, before I got on the whole zombie thing.)

However, this raises a professional dilemma for me. El Cabrero works for a Quaker organization and it is well known that Quakers have a testimony against violence. However, it is not clear whether this would apply to zombies, since they technically are not alive. Until I get a ruling from the central office, I shall devoutly hope that no zombie apocalypse ensues and, if one does, I will attempt to confine the dispatching of said zombies to non working hours.

Here's wishing you and yours, Gentle Reader, a happy and zombie-free holiday season.

SCROOGED by Congress.

A PERFECT STORM. White Castle, the chain that makes the little burgers which I crave, is contemplating selling alcohol as well. If that goes through, I think I've gotta move to Ohio.

I WANNA READ this new book about John Brown's raid.


December 21, 2011

More on the whole zombie thing

I have mentioned more than once that my over-educated daughter has an inordinate fascination with zombies. Prompted by her repeated expressions of concern, I have undertaken extensive research and watched one episode of The Walking Dead.

 On the basis of this scientific research, I have developed what I call the Cabrero Theorem of Zombie Apocalypses, which should be worth a Nobel Prize. It goes like this: the survivability of a zombie outbreak is inversely proportional to their intelligence. Or, conversely, it is directly proportionate to their stupidity.

(In other words, if they are smart, communicative and can use tools, we're gonna get eaten.)

((But then if they were, would they really be zombies?))

 You can quote me on this, but please use a footnote.

NO DIRECT CONNECTION, but how about that US House of Representatives?

STIRRING UP A HORNET'S NEST. A local controversy with racial overtones is brewing in Charleston, where Kanawha County school officials are resisting a community-led effort to name the new West Side Elementary School after Mary Snow, a great African American educator.



December 19, 2011

Getting the band together?

El Cabrero has been a negligent blogger lately due to crazy days. I'll try to do better this week, although I sense there's a bit of slacking going on out there.

First up, here's a possible sneak preview. Things might be about to get interesting with the Occupy movement in West Virginia. Rumor has it that the mostly young Occupy activist may link up with union retirees fighting to regain promised benefits. More on that to come if it takes off. This could be fun.

(Disclosure: one of my all time favorite social justice fights was supporting workers at this aluminum plant during a long and bitter lockout around 20 years ago. This could be like getting the band together again. A good fight is a great Christmas present.)

IN THE SPIRIT OF FAIR PLAY. I was encouraged to see this story break last week about Alpha Natural Resources reaching a contract deal with the United Mine Workers at five coal preparation plants. Alpha, you will recall, bought out the notoriously anti-union (anti-human?) Massey Energy and they really seem to be trying to make a fresh start.

 This is just gossip, but I heard through a relative who spends time in the eastern Kentucky coalfields that former Massey miners are finding the transition from the old company to the new like going from night to day. The record will show that there is absolutely no evidence to convict me of either optimism or coal company fandom, but Alpha does seem to be way less evil than Massey and I hope that this apparent trend is real and that it will continue.

  CHRISTMAS REFLECTIONS are the theme of the Rev. Jim Lewis' latest Notes from Under the Fig Tree.