Saturday, July 17, 2010

We, the Martyrs

Yesterday, as I was fingering through the Huffington Post app on my iPhone, I stumbled across an article detailing an unexpected and deadly suicide bombing in the vacation mecca of Iran. Ok, it wasn't really unexpected but it was deadly. At the time of writing, there had been 27 deaths confirmed. I'm not totally callous so I felt compassion for the families of those lost in the attack but as I continued to read the article I couldn't determine whether I should chuckle or rage at some of the details. Ultimately, I succumbed to both urges and belched a little in the process.

For those who didn't catch this tidbit mentioned on "Dance Your A@@ Off" or by Spencer Pratt prior to the series finale re-airing of "The Hills", here is the skinny. It begins in a familiar way.. dumbasses blowing themselves up and killing and maiming others in the name of peace but then the obvious chuckle-worthy absurdities emerge and blare to the world that there are some seriously skewed fucktards in this world.

A Sunni insurgent group said it carried out a double suicide bombing against a Shiite mosque in southeast Iran to avenge the execution of its leader, as Iranian authorities Friday said the death toll rose to 27 people, including members of the elite Revolutionary Guard.

--- Mundane enough. Just another Brian Williams and Katie Couric moment, right? But then, it begins to unravel ...

Shiite worshippers were attending ceremonies marking the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Hussein, when the first blast went off at the entrance of the mosque in the provincial capital Zahedan.

--- Ceremonies marking the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Hussein. Come again? No wonder these people are so pissy. Too much time with all of Mo's family. Good thing Jesus never had holy spawn (ahem) or Christians would never get away from the pews. No offense, Catholics. I imagine that today there is a ceremony marking the birth of Muhammad's gay second cousin, Gayssein, the creator of the burqua. Of course, that would help explain the next noteworthy mention in the article ....

The male bomber was disguised as a woman, local lawmaker Hossein Ali Shahriari told the ISNA news agency.

--- Alright. I am certainly not an authority on extremeist Islamic dogma. But, it seems to me that a male suicide bomber dressed as a woman might be considered to be a fundamental faux pax to Muhammad and his ilk. I imagine the two C-4-attired cherry bombs, undoubtedly named Muhammad and Mohammed floating to their promised land after their deed is complete, still in full burqua, support hose and undergarment finery from Aasera's Secret. I then imagine, with great glee, their bewildered expressions as they discover that, oops, their 72 virgins are male. Suddenly, that moment of Allah-inspired destruction seems quite regrettable as 71 black-haired virgins named Hakim, Raheem and, the like and yes, Muhommad, Mohammed and Muhammad Jr.and 1 bleach-blond virgin named Link stand in their glory before the two martyrs, offering a special group Big Bang with eternal explosions, all for a job well done.

But, it didn't stop there. No, it should have ended on that note becasue, well, it doesn't get much better than that. Au contraire, mon frere ... the kicker to the story came when a twisted pecker, appropriately dubbed Hossein Salami verbalized the following theory ....

"Iran accuses the United States and Britain of supporting Jundallah in a plot to weaken Tehran clerical leadership...... officials blamed them for the latest attack...."
Gen. Hossein Salami, deputy head of the Revolutionary Guard, told worshippers at the main weekly prayers in Tehran that the victims "were martyred by hands of mercenaries of the U.S. and U.K.
He was echoed by influential lawmaker Alaeddin Boroujerdi who said "America should be answerable for the terrorist incident in Zahedan."

---- Allllrighty then! Ummm, excuse me, Mr. Deli Meat, you may be one camel short of a pack. I can't speak for the U.K. but I can state with an abundance of certainty that the U.S. isn't to blame for your country's latest worldly shame. If you kept up with your Nightly News reports you'd recognize that if the U.S. wanted to weaken Iran's clerical leadership and commit an act of terrorism we'd do it the American way and send a gaggle of Catholic priests to defile your pre-pubescent martyrs or open a string of Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants throughout Tehran to ensure public obesity and assured heart disease by viciously promoting Double-Down sandwich kebabs to your country's oppressed and misled populace.

Besides the obvious, we the people of the infidel American states pretty much can agree that although America is now a melting pot of races, religions, cultures and creeds, our nation was founded on Christian principles. Open your eyes, Mr. Bologna, no red-blooded American Christian is going to sacrifice himself, not with the suspense of who will be replacing Simon Cowell on "American Idol" and the possibility of the World Cup of Irrelevancy ... uh, soccer, coming to America still hanging out there.

Wise up, Oscar Meyer, accept that your fucktard religious beliefs and infighting as a result of those beliefs are the reason for the latest martyrdom-fest. If you must, feel free to blame Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church. Better yet, please recruit Fred Phelps and his extremist congregation to perform firther acts of martydom within your country. The American people and U.S. government will foot the bill for their airfare, room and board. And, to show that America believes in solidarity with your country, we'll even chip in $10 billion or so for burquas and garters.

It's the least we can do for you and our Peacekeeper, Fred.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Permit To Toe Squish

Hello Boys and Girls, today’s lesson centers on our world, this great big, beautiful planet that we call home. This spinning orb that houses such diverse pleasures and pus-filled pox as butterflies, flowers, the Rocky Mountains, Bigfoot, billions of Chinamen, David Hasselhoff and the greatest vocalist ever to grace our ears, Mr. William Shatner.

Do you know what I’ve determined in my short time on this great big ball? No? Ok, I’ll tell ya …. This is one screwed-up place. And it’s getting worse. Honestly, I didn’t always think this way. When I first popped out of my mama and gasped, then coughed, then gasped and thought “Damn! Could ya take a Lady Bic and some FDS to the hedges, ma?” I had no clue about what this world held in store for me. I was still thinking about the good old days in my first life when I was Pharaoh Amen Ho! TepOnOverHere and had a 13-inch staff that I could command to become a snake. That magical time when a pyramid scheme meant creating a wonder of the world and Babylon wasn’t a bombed-out sand hole crawling with men named Saddam or Mohammed being forced to adopt a certain political structure by an egotistical Westerner. Well … maybe not that one. Some things never change.

Well, now here I am, reborn a slimy, slightly pissed new addition to the 20th Century. My staff is now a sprout. But, who knows what this life will hold. Forty-six years later I have learned a thing or two, adopted a habit or two… one good, many bad… and experienced things in this world that many people would never imagine being able to experience, let alone want to experience. Being a numerological Life Path 5 I feel the need to move often from place to place, task to task and experience to experience. Not in everything, per se, (I love that term, it’s catchy) but after learning something or mastering something I become bored and need to move to something new. It’s what has always caused me to stay in relationships for sometimes too long and change jobs or careers sometimes too often, at least by the world’s standards. If I get bored I’m not being challenged and if I’m not challenged then said task or item isn’t useful to me anymore. Blunt? Yes. Don’t like it? I don’t give a rat’s ass. Really. And a rat’s ass is pretty small.

Getting back to my idea, I’ve determined a few things about life on this planet and those things can easily be summed up in three simple things that apart seem mundane yet combined would provide a cure for the common cold, world peace and premature ejaculation if used for good, not evil.

Those three things? Ok… Organized Religion, Foul Language and the DMV.

Strange bedfellows? Yes they are. But they have a connection and that connection is at the very core of our existence. You may be thinking, “How is this peckernoggin going to explain this? What does the DMV have to do with anything good in life?” Well, patient, young Grasshoppah, I will enlighten you.

Let’s take organized religion first. Take a drink, toke, pill, breath or grab your rosary and say 100 Hail Mary’s before you read on. And let me preface this by saying that before I became enlightened, I had been a practicing Christian as early as the age of ejaculation. It wasn't until nine months later that I had the 666 sanded off my forehead at birth, so I do have some insight into this subject. Question for you …. What do Christianity, Islam, Mormonism and Hinduism have in common? Come on … give it a shot. Give up? Ok, well, each has it’s own sacred prophet or funnel to God. Jesus. Mohammed. Joe Smith (?) and a cow. Yes, a cow. I love a good piece of beef as much as the next guy but I’m not going to bend over and worship Bessie.

On a personal note, I have gone to church and been a Methodist all my life. I always equated church with flowers, a steeple and hard wooden pews when I was young and to eternal salvation, good versus evil and sacrifice as an adult. Here’s the kick in the ass that has recently opened my eyes … The one thing that organized religion teaches that I never consciously noticed but is SO very obvious when you step back and look… JUDGEMENTALism. Organized religion is the most judgemental, closed-minded form of segregation. Not just for Christians. Christians had the Crusades, based on human interpretations of what the Bible says. Islam has suicide bombers now but has always judged the world who doesn’t agree with its message of “peace.” Don't even consider mentioning South Park and Mohammed in the same sentence. You automatically sign your own death warrant and forfeit any chance of a virgin in heaven. Feel the Love? Mormonism? Well, it’s just fucked up. Jesus visited Colorado and talked to some dude named Joe Smith and told ol' Joe to hide his china pattern in a hat. Later, he added a clause in the Book of Joe that stipulates each male child, upon reaching the age of puberty, shall henceforth be required to straddle a Schwinn and annoy the living hell out of people door to door. Mission accomplished. The one thing that Mormonism has going for it is the multiple wives angle. There’s something to that. So says the Book of Mormon.

Hinduism? A cow is sacred. Yes, Bobby Flay is the preacher and Mrs. Dash is the essence of the religion. So says “Boy Vs. Grill.” It doesn’t matter if you get on your knees and praise Allah, God, Elsie the cow or “Jesus James” (Jesus in the wild west! Go Mormons!). In the end, every one of us will have to answer to someone. Whether it’s God, asking why he should “push the button and open or close the garage door” or the doctor standing over the death bed asking if it’s ok that he pulls the plug, we all have to answer to someone in the end.

So… being human as I often am, I thought a bit about the dynamics of religion per se, ;) and how foul language is directly related.

Think of the biggies that always got our mouths washed out with soap… Goddamn. The granddaddy of them all. A direct word of defiance, bastardized over the years but I have a feeling that the day Abraham heard God say “Abraham, I want you to climb that mountain and kill your boy” Abraham said under his breath, ‘Goddamn” … or maybe it was “Goddamneth” I don’t know, but he surely had a moment of defiance. And when Joe Smith was visited by Jesus in Utah and Jesus told ol’ Joe, “Hey Joe, you need at least 5 wives,” ol’ Joe said “Goddamn!” but had a bit different tone in his voice than Abraham had. Joe was thinkin’ about a fresh woman Monday through Friday and rest on the weekends … much like God during Creation. Different interpretations of a word, a foul-mouthed word, by two different people who looked upward to the same Being (who I do believe is there and has one HELL of a sense of humor).

This brings me to the DMV. Before any of this weird conglomeration of ideas even was a glimmer in my mind’s eye … Back when I had children that looked at me as a figurehead and not a lack of dollar signs, I visited the local DMV to extend my daughter’s temporary license. The place was packed with people from every ethnicity, religion, height, level of attractiveness and lifestyle. The DMV is God’s version of Hell on earth. No shit. (“Shit” is from the Aramaic for “Youethgottabekiddineth”) My daughter and I were sitting, waiting for number C209817325 to be called. They just called C209816091 so there are only 8 more hours of listening to screaming Chinese children, families of Bubbas and Tammis planning their next possum roast and Mexicans, uh, hispanics, por favor, discussing who will drive the truck home and who will ride in the bed of the truck with the lawn care equipment.

Finally, the number is called and when we get to the window the lovely young middle-eastern lady standing there is nicely dressed and has one of those long scarves on her head. My initial thought goes to my thoughts on peripheral vision while driving and how burqua'd women are able to accomplish that particular feat of safety. I wanted SO badly to ask if she has peripheral vision when she drives here in the land of Freedom but I refrained because I knew that my daughter would look at me, sneer and run straight to her mother which would guarantee an early demise. In hindsight, I wish I'd spoken.

Being I wasn't quite ready to answer to God or the surgeon just yet I didn’t ask.

But, I had to know something. Like I said in an earlier post … if I don’t learn something new each day I consider it a wasted day. So, I asked something that I’ve often wondered about.

“Excuse me. Can you tell me the proper term for your head gear?” Yes, I said head gear. I didn’t want to say scarf, towel, curtain or the like. I thought it might be taken the wrong way. For the first time, maybe the first time in her previously oppressed lifetime, she smiled. “It’s called a Hedjamb” she replied. I asked her to spell it and she did. She explained to me why she wears it. She had lovely, expressive eyes as she spoke about her head gear. I had not been judgmental. Yeah, I partly asked to satisfy an inner smartass but I also really wanted to know. THAT is the moment the idea for this blog post took root. I also learned a bit more about myself in a few different ways. No, I still don’t agree with the cow thing, the Jesus in Utah thing, the Mohammed advocating killing people by wearing a belt made of C4, or even Jesus saying that unless you believe in him you’re destined for Hell. What I have learned is that we ALL need something to believe in. We all are human and have faults. I believe I'm doing just fine. Sure, I curse at times. I don't follow the mindless masses to church anymore so I can get a chuckle from watching the fake smiles of people pretending that everything is great in life as they raise their hands and sway to “Amazing Grace” and by God, I still have to go to the Goddamned DMV.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Thou Shalt Laugh, Dammit, By God

I believe I’ve stated once or twice or a thousand times that I find humor in everything. I once decided that there is not a single thing on the face of this planet that can’t have at least one humorous quality attributed to it. That goes for events as well as objects. We just so happen to live in a time in history that affords us the ability to know virtually everything that is happening on the planet and that makes for a bottomless bucket of hilarity. God, the Great Spirit, the Divine Energy, whatever you choose to call our spiritual life force has given each of us a sense of humor and I believe that tapping into that sense of humor is a vital tool for surviving a lot of this hell on earth that we must endure.

Yes, God has a sense of humor and I’m certain that at many points throughout history God has looked down upon his dour creation while snickering or laughing, seen politically correct asses ‘seriousizing’ everything and uttered the holiest of phrases, ‘Fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke.” Hey, if the Divine said it then I’m safe with my take on life’s tragedies, right?

“I truly believe that God has one hell of a sense of humor and that He has passed it along to his peeps (us) on this big round ball as well as to all the bug-eyed aliens living out there in that vast candy-coated Milky Way. I’m still holding out hope that the hot alien green chick from Star Trek (t-r-E-k, not t-r-A-k) will land on earth with directions to the LemmeDooYa galaxy and her home planet of Howm Ay I Plee Zha. Think about the things in nature that cause us to grin, chuckle, laugh, snort, guffaw, and blow a booger out the nose during a pee-worthy belly-laugh. Sure, there’s the obvious … like William Hung singing “She Bangs” (God Bless You Hung-ster!) and men whose hair snaps into place on their scalps, but then there are the not-so-obvious things. These are the ones that grab ya by the balls (short hairs for the ladies), twist and cause you to release a most foul, unpleasant odor at just the wrong time.

Example, you ask? Ok. OJ Simpson. Yeah, the Juice. That beautiful, swift, Heisman-winning black mofo who allegedly nicked his wife and a friend to bits with a Buck knife several years ago. I still don’t believe that one. I mean, he was funny as hell in “Naked Gun.” Anyone that good and funny can’t slice up a couple of people, lose a glove and allow Kato Kaelyn to live in his house. Right? Anyway, that’s not the funny part. No way. The funny part is that this man, once the toast of Buffalo (whoop de doo, Buffalo?) is now facing multiple years in prison for … get this … stealing his own shit! Now that’s some irony right there. God is up there, iTunes blasting “I Gotcha” by Joe Tex through his earbuds, looking down at that knappy head and laughing his holy ass off. Gotcha, OJ. Ha! Now THAT’S funny. Arrested for stealing your own memorabilia, at gunpoint. Think about it, all of the memorabilia that used to ensure he would get a piece of ass now is his guaranteed ticket to BE a piece of ass to Tiny and the boys in Cell Block C. Tell me God doesn’t have a sense of humor! Another example, you ask? Ok. Sure. This might look obvious but it really isn’t. .. Britney Spears. Paris Hilton. Nicole Ritchie. Lindsay Lohan. Ok… take a moment to think of your own jokes ….. …… lalallalalala…. Done yet? Ok. So, we have a nasally, lip-synching, pantyless drunk, …. a skinny, self-proclaimed “hot” socialite drunk,… a very fortunate adopted yet clueless and pregnant figurehead for interracial marriage (the reason she’s a drunk) and Lindsay Lohan. Lindsay Lohan, enough said. The poster child for Fucked Up. There is not enough room on the billboards for all of her “ism’s”.How is this funny? Why is God humoring us with these talented, caring, intelligent pillars of the community? Need I say more? He’s laughing at us. He’s laughing at us while we are looking at these fine female role models and shaking our heads at them while we flip from E to ET on the tube. WE are what’s funny because we can’t look away. Like the train wreck we slow down to look at or the woman slowly undressing in the window across the street… hold on a sec…… be right back ….. yeah, like those things, we can’t look away. God made us to be able to laugh at ourselves and he put people like Britney, Paris and the like here to point out to us that we are funny creatures! Oh, and today I was in Lord & Taylor department store. I was walking through women’s shoes since I like pumps (hehehe) and what do I see but a Muslim lady dressed head to toe in a burka, face covered too, could barely see her eyes. The outfit trailed behind her as she walked and not a stitch of clothing or footwear showed. She was examining a pair of very expensive women’s dress shoes. Now THAT’S funny.”

Lost Books of The Bible

These previously unknown versions of our sacred texts was recently discovered in a tenement in Brooklyn, NY. It is believed that the texts were carried, probably via a winged and four-wheeled vehicle known as the DeVille, from the inner sanctums of Harlem, NY in the early or mid 1970’s, AD. I cannot verify nor certify its’ authenticity.

Book of Tyrone – circa 1973

…. and Tyrone be dope. Tyrone had the respect of all bitches and ho’s in the land of Harlem. Upon hearing his calling from “The Man,” the Great Master, Tyrone took his mighty staff and waved it proudly before the masses and declared “Yo! Behold what the Massa has blessed my bad ass wit! Y’all muthasfuckas best be hearin’ what I’m sayin’ or da shit’s gonna be all up in this piece!”

It was then that “The Man” spoke to Tyrone, saying, “ Ty, be not haughty nor ubiquitous. The people will listen. The people will respect your sensitivity.”

Upon hearing what “The Man” said, Tyrone responded to His Master saying, “Huh? Whatchoo be talkin’ ‘bout man? What da fuck do ‘haughty’ mean anyway? You told me to wave my staff in front of the bitches and tell ‘em to let my peoples go and that is what I be doin’. Lemme do my shit and we gonna be in Manhattan sellin’ Gucci purses with the Socialites in the MuthaLand!”

The Great Master responded to Tyrone, saying “Ty, I meant wave the rod, the WOODEN rod I provided you with, to the masses, and command it to become a snake.”

This being said, Tyrone confronted the Great Master with a smile, looked towards the heavens, winked to the Ho’s, and said “Yo, Massa Man, I think the masses love the snake but the rod does get the bitches respect …..”

Book of Leon – circa 1971

In the beginning there was “The Man” and The Man was Good. And The Man was white. And The Man said, “Let there be Light!” and there was light. The Man then said, “Let there be Dirt” and there was dirt. The Man went on, saying, “Let there be Life,” and all these tiny little tadpole like muthas started crawlin’ around. WHITE tadpoles! And The Man said “this is good, but it isn’t THAT good, yet. So, let there be soul!” And there was soul. And Soul’s name was Leon. And The Man loved Leon because he was just one brutha on His beautiful creation. But Leon was squirmy and edgy, and The Man noticed. And Leon was down with eating the animals and plants that The Man had provided. But the day arrived when Leon said, “Yo, Man, I’m down with eatin’ yak, possum and sometimes a chicken, but yo, Dude, throw a brutha a bone and gimme some Pussy to eat!” So, The Man, hearing His creation’s desperate cry took 3 inches of Leon’s meatpole and created woman, whom he named Shaniqua. And Shaniqua had booty. And booty held the answers to life’s mysteries. But Shaniqua began to challenge Leon’s shit and thus was born the “Bob and Weave” head motion.

Leon, knowing his main Man had his back, said, “Yo Yo Yo, MAN, what da fuck you take three inches of my dick fo? Now all I got is a 9 inch dick and a ho that bitches!”

The Man, seeing Leon’s displeasure, sent to His creation a new plant, aptly named cannabis, which even today is used to sustain life in The Man’s Hood.

Book of Albert – circa 1972

“Hey! Hey Hey!” Albert droned to The Man ….. Soon after, The Man killed Albert, a portly prophet, with a Steak Burrito smothered in salsa and manna and the universe was left to evolve under The Man’s tutelage until Albert would be raised animated syndication in the late 1990’s, through technology known as cinema, to less than enthused masses.

Note: The preceding texts have been provided by various highly-regarded scholars and creationists such as Jesse “jesus” Jackson, Al Sharpton *name patented and trademarked under US statute *Jesus was an oppressed Black Man So Pay Me my Reparations Dammit*, Spike Lee and Bob Saget. Yes, Bob Saget.

All references to “The Man,” “Great Master,” and “Leon” have been graciously supplied by Jews for Jerome and the Jesus Was a Brutha Foundation.

Any relation to persons living, dead, raised from the dead or yet to be born is completely coincidental and unintended. Word.”

Gimme Back My Rib, Dammit.

Children ... the by-products of a few seconds of contorted facial expressions during a moment of ejaculatory bliss. Nine months later, you find yourself sitting in a delivery room watching the very same facial-contortions grotesquely exhibited on the woman's face as she craps in the bed and pushes from her freaskishly huge womanhood the baked goods you so feverishly created in a blink of an eye nine months prior. Joyous day, my lily white ass.

Flash forward nineteen years ... Children .... Can't send 'em back, even though I'm pretty sure I know of one money-grubbing, bearded cooch that could accommodate two spoiled and misguided spawn that I'm personally very familiar with. I'm beginning to believe that I was an unwilling participant in the devilish scheme of a family bent on world domination. Domination obtained through material appreciation, image massage and control of everyone through subjugated servitude provided by the unknowing, myself included.
Sadly, there are two innocents who have succumbed to the wiley ways of the Southern Charmer's hypocritical clan. Not knowing the difference between reality and perceived, or learned, reality is most certainly setting them up for a difficult life once they have been kicked from.... I mean, sent on their way from ... the cozy Restoration Hardware inspired designer home so meticulously prepared by a similarly plastic and recyclable birther.

Sure, I'm not perfect. Far from perfect, no less. Actually, I am so far removed from prefect that my flaws have flaws of their own. But that's okay with me. I like being flawed, it is quite liberating and knowing that I'm an imperfect being takes the worry out of consideration when contemplating walking through fire or across a pirhana-infested lake. I moved from that lake and hellfire a couple of years ago, leaving the birther with her magic mirror, purchased self-assuredness and neatly-appointed living spaces. I also left two impressionable teenage materialistic children who have undoubtedly been swayed into believing that the sperm donor that is their father is out of touch with what is real and important. Namely, paintball guns, a Mercedes-Benz, last-minute vacations and really spiffy toys and clothes. You, know, the necessities. Ironically, I am the one perceived to be at odds with reality when in fact I will attest that by losing everything I have gained everything and by everything I mean my sense of self and a firm grasp on what is real and important.

Yet, as these baked goods snub my advances to repair a relationship with them they unknowingly continue to fall prey to the horrors of future personal uncertainty about themselves. Hey, birther, possibly a new $700 paintball gun will allay this scenario? Perhaps a vacation? Why not just hand each of the spawn a crisp new $1000 bill each month with the word 'LOVE' written across the face in bright, red Gothis Script lettering?

Money is a necessary evil. In the wrong hands it is just evil and when viewed as the end-all means to an end it is more vile than a pile of birther crap cracklin' from the anus of one of Satan's minions during childbirth. Add vindictiveness and an unwillingness to accept defeat coupled with a headstrong attitude that forgiveness is conditional, for a price, and you have a recipe for today's society. I equate my children's birther mentality to that of the US Military involvement in Afghanistan. Tell the people (kids) what they want to hear. We are doing what we need to do. The enemy is evil. We must destroy oppression and tyranny since, afterall, they grow poppies and live in caves. Tell them these things to promote solidarity while secretly plotting to rape and pillage the enemy's resources which, whattaya know, just so happen to be very valuable... worth trillions perhaps.
Of course, I'm not worth trillions of dollars, but my individualism is worth far more and is something that the birther cannot lay claim to. And just like Afghanistan laying claim to their own resources and the US not being able to snatch it away despite very persistent attempts masked as aid and compassion, I hold onto my greatest asset, my independence and sense of self while the birther has no possible chance of taking claiming it from me despite her six-figure career, scads of high-profile 'friends' who support her in her destruction of the enemy (yours truly), plasticized chest and botoxed cheeks. Unfortunately, like many in our country who fall victim to the messages of 'spreading democracy' globally while being duped in the name of Franklin, Washington, Lincoln and Jackson, my baked goods will continue to snub the one half of the equation that helped create them as long as messiers Franklin, et al are presented as their guardians while good ol' dad is trashed and thrashed as being evil simply for refusing to accept personal defeat at the hands of a puppeteer.
Hope springs eternal and not from Bank of America. Joy comes from within, not from fluffed throw pillows and Celtics tickets.

Oh yeah, and when the time comes, I have pruning shears ... ideal for snipping puppet strings and trimming dead branches from skinned, beetle infested trees. No charge.