Archive for the 'fun' Category

Overwhelmed!

The last time Democrats won anything I was looking forward to catching the Grateful Dead in Denver. The year: 1994. Bill Clinton was elected to a second term — but I was too stoned to notice.

Oops — actually it was ’96. Still…this feels momentous.

It’s 3AM on the east coast of America. It’s been hours since Dems were projected victors of the US House. At this hour the Democratic candidates enjoy a 6,000 vote lead in both Virginia & Montana. If these leads hold then the Vice President will have one less job to do in Washington.

His services won’t be needed to break ties in the Senate. So he’ll have more time to go hunting.

Begs the question: Who’s gonna get Shot??

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the White-Winged Vampire Bat

Looks like a baby Yoda or something don’t it?
white-winged-alien.jpg
I am fascinated by this creature. I consider their kind among the smartest, most gentle predator species on Earth. Scientists call these Diaemus Youngi; the White-Winged Vampire Bat. They feed on blood from the feet of sleeping birds.

Bats are weird. They’re the only mammals who fly. Nocturnal creatures, who hang upside-down from their feet to sleep. Plus: they can’t see. Bats navigate with an audio spacial-recognition system known as echolocation. Chirped at high frequencies, the sounds in the linked audio clip help the Myotis bat locate prey insects up to thirty feet away.

To help us grasp the echolocation concept I point to the experience of a blind human:

Ask people about Ben Underwood and you’ll hear dozens of stories…about the amazing boy who doesn’t seem to know he’s blind. There’s Ben zooming around on his skateboard outside his home in Sacramento; there he is playing kickball with his buddies. To see him speed down hallways and make sharp turns around corners is to observe a typical teen – except, that is, for the clicking. Completely blind since the age of 3, after retinal cancer claimed both his eyes (he now wears two prostheses), Ben has learned to perceive and locate objects by making a steady stream of sounds with his tongue, then listening for the echoes as they bounce off the surfaces around him. About as loud as the snapping of fingers, Ben’s clicks tell him what’s ahead: the echoes they produce can be soft (indicating metals), dense (wood) or sharp (glass). Judging by how loud or faint they are, Ben has learned to gauge distances.

It is suggested that bats evolved through natural selection from gliding mammals such as the flying squirrel. Perhaps, the theory goes, random DNA mutations — passed down through generations — stretched and thinned the skin in flying squirrel’s flaps until they gained enough control over their glide to enable genuine flight.

One wonders: Is the boy’s seeming supernatural ability to echo-locate developed — from the age of 3 — out of a random genetic mutation of his own?

Vampire bats have gained a Bad Rap for bloodletting their prey. The vulture has a similarly bad name because they pluck nutrient-rich flesh from the bones of dead animals. It tells something about our Mind-set, that the vulture — a hunter who waits patiently for nature to run its course — are considered lower on the Food Chain than predators who violently kill their feed.

As if what vultures do is disgusting.

Yeah — but who wants to get their blood sucked by a bat? Well. If I were a prey animal — humans were once, until we learned to protect ourselves from wild predation (now we prey on ourselves) — I’d feel downright jolly about it. Specifically, if I were a chicken given the choice between being captured & killed & eaten by a fox and having blood drank from my toe while I sleep…I’d take a good bloodletting.

I say the White-Winged Vampire bat is among the smartest of Planet Earth’s species. Because they don’t diminish their own food supply; these bats don’t kill their prey.

And — as the good folks at New Mexico’s Rancho Transylvania have learned — White-Winged Vampire bats are phenomenally gentle, among predatory species. Bats kept in captivity there feed on chickens. Each chicken plays host to a bat once a week. The chickens stay healthy. And rarely awaken while preyed upon.

They don’t feel a thing.

3 partially dissolved floating blue dots

I don’t puke often.

Once — in New Orleans — I hurled from too much alcohol. I threw up at my first Grateful Dead concert, back in 1985, I think because I’d never smoked such intensely potent pot before. Of course there’s the wooHOO! pukes 45 minutes or so after eating ecstasy — but that’s when the pukinz rule.

I was at a party Friday night. Sitting on the couch talking to a friend about the first time she took mushrooms. With her best friend on top of some mountain. They ate the shrooms. Ten minutes later her friend threw up. It sucks when that happens because 10 minutes isn’t long enough for the shrooms to make their way into the brain.

What can you do?

I didn’t want to think too hard on it. I’d eaten a little LSD — a drug I may be too old for — maybe an hour earlier and felt a touch queasy ever since.

So I popped my last 3 speed pills — 10 milligram Adderalls, the blue ones — hoping they’d calm my tummy down. And sat on the couch with my friend Andrea. She started to tell me the story about the first time she ate shrooms. Wonderful. A good story like that always makes me feel better…

…Until she got to the part where her friend puked up all the shrooms.

My tummy gurgled.

I don’t puke often. So I really don’t know the early warning signs. I felt a bit queasy, as I said. And when she started to talk about puke my tummy gurgled. Naturally. Why wouldn’t it?

Only thing is I figured it didn’t have anything to do with me puking right that second specifically.

Andrea kept telling her story.

They were on top of some mountain, her & her best friend, just the two of them eating mushrooms for the first time. And Andrea’s best friend threw the shrooms up into a pile on the ground. By then Andrea’s shrooms were already finding their way into her brain. Faced with the unhappy prospect of tripping alone Andrea did the only thing that made sense:

She made her friend pluck the shrooms out of the puke-pile and eat them again.

Now that’s a great story about the first time eating shrooms. Unless you were me listening to it right then.

My tummy gurgled lurched & before I realized what was happening I wretched violently. Cusped my hand over my mouth & raced for the nearby & (happily) empty bathroom. Swung my head over the toilet just in time. Emptied the contentents of my dinner into the bowl.

‘Dang.’ I thought. And I was so proud of myself for managing to eat that hot dog before I went off to party…

Oh well. At least I felt better. And — as the squiggle-colored lines dancing to & fro in front of my eyes could attest — at least I’d managed more-or-less to digest the LSD.

I cleaned myself off. Hallucionated a little more. And right about then hoped the speed I’d recently eaten would kick in soon. For familiarity’s sake; I’d not eaten acid for some time and knew the amphetamines would keep my brain-rails grounded in familiar psyhchic terrain.

Yeah but then wouldn’t you know it? As I reached over to flush, a quick glance into the toilet bowl revealed the last thing I wanted to see:

Three partially dissolved little blue dots floating there and — I know I was tripping and all but I’ll be damned if those evil fuckers weren’t laughing at me!

So LONG suckaZ!!

One time me & MG Tank were driving out to a Phish show in Rochester NY. Flipping dials on the FM radio. Suddenly the announcer was like News Flash!! Phish are coming to town — along with what the local police chief described as the Phish band’s notorious Drug Problem.

My jaw dropped. MG Tank’s eyes lit up. I Laughed riotously. Let out a one-word gasp:

‘YES!!’

MG Tank stammered excitedly and finally said ‘DUDE!!!’

Then both at once: ‘That’s me & YOU!!’

Wow. Notorious?

That’s right. Alert the Youth! We are the Drug Problem & we’re coming to your Town.

We’ll help you Party Down!!

Just then we saw a cop about a quarter-mile back & closing fast in the passing lane. He pulled alongside & eyed us suspiciously. I looked at MG Tank & noticed his eyes were clasped fearfully shut behind his sunglasses. I knew it was my job to Jedi mind-trick the cop since MG Tank was busy driving.

‘We are not the Drug Problem you’re Looking For.’ I said aloud. MG Tank opened his eyes. Flipped his sunglasses onto his forehead. Then turned & winked at the cop. Nothing to see here.

Couple’a rock & roll fans is all — with a borrowed station wagon & enough dried alien turds to make a medium-sized village laugh literally until they puke.

Oh yeah — and a homemade bumpersticker that says I Am Your Brain On Drugs ASShole!!

Problem? Shit we’re the solution.

The cop sped suddenly off & dissolved into the horizon. Why? I guessed for quantum reasons; perhaps because though we both traveled down a Thruway on Earth we in fact inhabit different planets entirely.

MG Tank had a different theory:

‘I think he went to go eat a used douche.’

We were both right more than likely.

Gets me to think on the time in Nebraska on Fall ’95. Now…Tank & me got away with It. But the one dude in Lincoln got away with It in style.

All I saw was two cops storm him from behind. Wanted to search his backpack. On the probable grounds that he seemed to prefer that they didn’t. A commotion ensued as the cops salaciously groped the kid — I call him the Quarterback — & barraged him with dumb questions.

Like: BOY! What kind of Drugs you got on you??

I don’t know what the dude had on him. A big old honker pile o’Whatevers I bet. God bless him if he did. I know for sure he had a glass marijuana pipe which he kept in a sewn padded pouch. The pouch was about the size of a football. It flew through the air like one too. Spiraled just overhead of the concert-goers who were crowded along the sidewalk.

Why not? That glass marijuana pipe was Evidence. And evidence is always better off hurled 20 feet down the way least ye Quarterback get sacked. Especially when not one but both cops haul off & chase the evidence down the street.

The Quarterback split smartly & laid low until he was safely inside the show. I never knew his name. But I’ll never forget how he made those two cops look like butt-wipe stooges in Lincoln.

The evidence was caught by a random admirably alert passerby; the Wide Receiver.

The cops got to the wide receiver. But what could they do? In front of a hundred witnesses the pouch fell into his arms out of the clear twilit sky.

Or did it?

‘Watcha Got There boy??’ The cops demanded.

The wide reciever smiled & shrugged. Held his hands palm-open. Turned his pockets inside out; patted his head & rubbed his belly.

‘Not a damn thang.’ He said. ‘I swear on Jerry’s grave.’

It was true. The pipe-pouch was gone. Poof. Hand-off maybe. Who knew?

The cops lurched idiotically this way & that. Someone politely suggested they check the Lost & Found. And the people all watching enjoyed a good laugh.

the talking balcony

My First Rock & Roll concert (age 13):

Heart, at the 1984 World’s Fair in New Orleans.

First time I got arrested for absolutely no reason:

11 years later, on Bourbon Street, the night before Phish played the State Palace.

First (& only) time I ever hurled from booze:

On Bourbon St the night after Phish played jazzFest (’96) arm in arm with Superstar Brown while he yuked too.

First time I lived for a week under a bush in a major American city:

JazzFest ’97, after my Valuables fell inadvertantly out of my pocket on Bourbon St.

First time I sat on the curb for a fascinating hour-long chat with the peculiarly grooved 2nd-story balcony across the street:

Somewhere in the Quarter. I plumb forget where — & most of what was said — but as I walked away that balcony gave me the best advice.

Listen. You Make stories. And tell them. That’s all…

Cheers to New Orleans!! Not a city, she, so much as one strange & long tale to tell.

Why My Blog Rules

The Ladies the LADIES!!

Pippi Velma leighton & Chloe!

Whadaya say Galloway?

WHOO!!

This place is Chick Centraal.

Drunk Driving Laws: the Case Against

What we need is an organization to bribe Congress for the Right to enjoy our liquor while we cruise. Yep. Enshrine it in a Constitutional Guarantee.

What about the Pursuit Of Happiness?? Says right in the Constitution that we’re endowed by the Creator with the right to pursue our own happiness.

Yet I don’t see a damn word where it says we gotta drive sober on the way!

Yeah — but what about all those Sober Drivers who always get in the way?

They suck.

I say this: If you mess with a drunk driver in patriotic pursuit of their God Given Right to be happy…why, that means you Hate Freedom.

Terrorist!