Thursday, February 24, 2011

Just A Quick Question From the Peanut Gallery

Would the Founding Fathers really have found this less shocking than an AR-15?

I'm just saying, if you say there are limits to 2A because no one could have imagined the unholy terror of the technoglockoassaulto-99xtreme killraper, do you think they would have imagined this when they wrote 1A?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Beating the System: An Amanda Story

So my wife is a fiend for beating the system.

Some women like to shop, though I know there are those that do not-my mother, for instance, collapses into a prostrate wreck at the prospect of having to go to Wal Mart. Amanda likes to shop as well, but to her shopping is an eternal gauntlet thrown in her face, a gauntlet that says You have to pay full market value for this shit and to which she replies Silence, Capitalism, I will rape your face. And the hell of it is, then she does.

The proof is in the pudding. I don't make that much money; it is decent money for a console jockey, but with not enough for a single income family. And yet we make it work, and live a pretty plush suburban lifestyle without going into more debt, simply because she does exhaustive research before every freaking thing she buys, scours Freecycle and Craigslist, and thinks ahead to what she will need rather than what she does need. She checks what coupons do and don't stack, calculates percentages, compares and cross references brands, subscribes to every newsletter of deals and cheats and actually reads that shit. And then puts it into practice.

I mean seriously, when I just downstairs I was looking into a chest freezer full of frozen convenience foods that cost us like seventeen motherfucking dollars in real money, because she collected approximately nine million coupons and found them on clearance at a place that was handing out 5$ gift cards for every seven frozen food items you bought. And she did it all with nothing more than skull sweat, planning, and some extra patience. (Well, some of that patience was mine-I really wanted a fucking cigarette)

Goddamn I love this woman. And frozen burritos. I love those too.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Writing Project

So I have a new writing project or two I have been working on. My working solution is this: I type up the documents in MSword at work, which as a supervisor I now have access to. Before the end of each shift, I print it off and put it in my man purse inside a Weird Wars game supplement. This serves two purposes-first, I don't have to save a bunch of cra-ay-ay-ay-ay-zy disturbing shit in a public folder at work, and second, I don't have access to a file of it so I can drive myself mad with going back and editing shit. I print it up and it is set in stone. Believe it or not, this has been the death of several writing projects for me.

Anyway, I am moving ahead. I decided that it is finally time to goddamn finish something, so I have been writing about 2000 words a shift, barring exceptional workload. Lately, I have been pushing for 4000 words a shift. If the story pans out the way I plan, I am 4 chapters in, about 20% done. (And yes, there is already lesbian action.) But it has surprised me several times before and I am oddly eager to see the end of it. It isn't anything heavy or deep-just post apocalyptic doom porn with some Dune like post human musings. The hero is more archetype than man, and I am just mapping out the multigen apocalypse fantasy that already exists in my head and shoving a narrative up its ass. At heart, it is a tawdry action movie with a few snide cultural commentary jokes and the occasional heavy handed existential ramble.

Why something so trashy? Because it flows. Trash flows easily from the bent junkyard of my diseased mind, and I want to finish something, for fucks sake.

The working title is The Codex Kalachnikova. I'm making up words like crazy, figuring how English is going to change following a social collapse, after a few generations of hard living and bloody anarchy. I'm sticking in whatever references I please; Watership Down, Bedknobs & Broomsticks, The Marx Brothers. I am taking a couple of cheap shots at the city of New York. (excuse me, the ancient City-State of NYE, ruled by Emperor Bloomberg XVI of the Line of Bloomberg, with an elite force of troops known as the NYPD, or "NYE PUDS") I'm making a few Piers Anthony slapstick gags, such as having the descendants of Hell's Angels ride giant mutated feral pigs with horns and spikes called "Hawgs." I'm exploring some strange depths and heights of the polygamous relationship in a post apocalyptic world. And with all this I think I might be creating something really freaking epic.

This is the shit that churns in my head, every fucking day, whenever I am bored. If I can't finish this story, I can't finish anything.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Scumfuck Praxis: Wearing the Big White Hat

So in the course of learning slowly and painfully how to organize a group into something resembling a coherent fighting force, I have learned a lot of things that I didn't know when I was just a starry eyed D&D nerd with too many friends and a thick helping of misanthropy. There are a couple of things about commanding the loyalty of your bannermen that I wanted to share with everyone that might be planning their own bugouts for their own groups.

First off, and before you consider anything else, remember that if you want to lead, you are going to be investing three to four hours of labor for every hour any of your people put in. Why? Because everything they do is something you have to approve of, and by extension understand well enough to approve of. And beyond that, you need to coordinate with them and help them budget time and money to actually get it done. This also includes staying on top of them to make sure it gets completed, which will be one of your bitterest duties-nobody likes to be the whip cracking overseer, but you will find that if you shirk your job, it will be easy for them to shirk theirs. So before you start making noises about leadership, be prepared to work more and harder than everyone else. If you want to wear the big white hat because you want people doing shit for you, then believe me-you don't want to wear the big white hat.

Second, your personal commitment to your gear and training must be an ideal for the others to hold up to. You must be their paragon of personal preparedness, and they need to know it. How can you expect them to commit seriously to something you are only half assing? Leadership, civilian and military and paramilitary, is at least 75% setting an example. So when you show up for FTX, your personal gear needs to be in order, tested and ready to go, and you need to be as well. You need to be ready, and look ready, and make sure that no matter what, you project an aura of confidence and strength. They will pick up on this, and emulate it. I suppose it is possible that you could "fake it til you make it"-but if you do this, your crew will pick up on that too, and emulate that, becoming tactical bullshit artists just like you. And then you will find yourselves in a worse situation, which many of your "militia" types have fallen into-an epic orgy of self congratulatory back patting, long on medals and short on sweat. So don't do it. Be something for them to look up to, and they will reward you by emulating your most desirable traits.

Finally I present the stickiest example of leadership, and one that can kill your combat effectiveness as quick as nerve gas. I am going to lay it out in black and white for you homie-you wanna wear the big white hat, then sooner or later any of the interpersonal drama is going to get dumped in your lamp. This is common to any peer group, sociologically speaking-but unlike other groups, drama in your fireteam can theoretically get you killed. There is no avoiding drama; it is part and parcel of being human. But it needs to be handled with empathy and diplomacy, and you, oh self appointed Leader of Men, are going to have to deal with it. Why? Because no one else will, and you wanted to wear the big white hat. Practically speaking, the best thing you can do is know your team members, and eliminate those who are high drama. But even a low drama group (yes, even a group of stoners) has its dramatic episodes, and when that happens you need to be impartial and show concern for everyone's feelings. If this sounds like touchy feely hippie bullshit to you, well, it kind of is. But you don't have the weight of the UCMJ behind your commands; everyone is associating with you voluntarily, and if you try to be some drill sergeant hardass and impose order through terror of punishment, you are going to find yourself pushing miniatures around a sand table and talking to yourself. So show a drop of empathy, for fucks sake. It will pay off in the end, and you can always kick a puppy if you feel too full of sunshine.

Special Sneak Preview for the next Scumfuck Praxis: 5 Things About Your Bugout You Haven't Considered. Good luck, and keep your powder dry.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Story Time

Today I would like to relate to you, my friends and fellow degenerates, a story of the indians, with a little scumfuck twist. I am not sure what tribe it belongs to; I read it in a book of comparative mythology and I always liked it. It contains a lesson we would all do well to heed.

Long ago, before any of our grandfathers were born, Grey One made his way along the path he had made. If you saw Grey One, you would not know him-you would call him Prickly One, or Porcupine. But he carried no quills then, just soft grey fur. Now when Grey One wanted to, he could run as fast as Fox; he just didn't want to. Another thing you may not know about Grey One is that he can climb trees as well as anyone, though of course he seldom had cause to do this.

So as Grey One took his time along the path that he had made, who should come by but Bear, huffling and whuffling as he went quickly along Grey One's path. "Ooof, Grey One, get out of my way."

"I don't want to; I want to take my own time," replied Grey One.

"Ho-ho, your own time, eh?" And Bear stepped on Grey One, his sharp claws putting deep scratches in Grey One's back. Then he continued along the path.

Grey One licked his wounds and went down his path further, but then along comes Bobcat, hissing and snarling as she tore rapidly up the path. "Grey One," he growled, "get out of my way!"

"It's my path, I made it," replied Grey One, and Bobcat laughed and swatted Grey One aside with her claws, scratching him deeply and knocking him into a tree. Then he went along Grey One's path.

As Grey One continued up his path, bleeding and limping, soon came Dog, barking and slathering up the path as fast as he could. "Ho-ho, Grey One! Get out of the way, you're blocking my path."

"It's MY path," sobbed Grey One. "I made it!"

"Ho-ho, then make this." And Dog leapt upon Grey One and shook him hard, until Grey One was dizzy and crying. Then Dog continued up the path.

Then Fox, cleverest among animals, came trotting casually up the path, his tongue lolling out as he bounced along. Grey One shuddered when he came near, but Fox only stopped and asked "What is wrong, Grey One?"

"They all scratch and bite me," sobbed Grey One, licking his wounds.

"Never mind that, would you climb that tree and get that pinecone for me?"

Grey One considered this and climbed up the tree as nimbly as a raccoon, and brought the pinecone down to Fox.

"Now I will help you," said Fox. "Come with me and roll in this mud." He stepped over to a muddy patch of the path.

Grey One crept closer and said "As long as you don't bite me." And he got down and rolled in the mud, to Fox's roars of laughter. "Oh-ho, Grey One! You look like a chunk of dung rolled in a ditch! Well that's just what I want, oh-ho!"

Then Fox went to a nearby thornbush and began to place them, one by one, into the mud on Grey One's skin. Both Grey One and the thorns were coated in black and brown, and so they remain to this day. Eventually, getting uncomfortable, he asked Fox what he should do while the mud was drying.

"Nothing," said Fox. "Just take your own time."

Grey One nodded, though he still didn't understand. It was dark by then, so both Fox and Grey One began heading back down the path, at their own pace. Then, whuffling and snarling, Bear came up the path, and saw them there.

"Oh ho, get out of my way, Grey One, or you'll get more of the same." He showed Grey One his claws.

"Why don't you just step on him?" said Fox impudently.

"You are no friend of mine, but your idea is a good one." And so saying he brought his paw down on Grey One's back, but the thorns jabbed his paw and he howled in pain before heading off the path, to Fox's taunts and roars of laughter.

Then along the path came Bobcat, hissing and snarling, for the hunting was poor. When she saw Grey One, she yowled at him "Get out of the way, Grey One, or I'll swat you away again!"

"Give him a swat, he deserves it," crowed Fox.

"You are no friend of mine," said Bobcat, "but your idea is a good one." And she swatted Grey One hard. But the thorns poked her paws and she hissed and spat in agony, licking her wounds and yowling, while Fox roared with laughter.

Then who should come along the path but dog, snarling and slathering as he came up behind Fox & Grey One. "Whuff, move along you two, I'm in a hurry," he snarled at them.

"He won't do it," said Fox. "He is stubborn now, and you should teach him a lesson."

"Whuff, I will," said Dog, "though you were never my friend." And so saying he leapt on Grey One and bite him, shaking him hard, but only for a moment before he was howling and trying to spit out the thorns-but they had grown long and cruelly barbed by then, and he could do nothing but whine and bark plaintively.

"Eat him alive, you monster!" shouted Fox, and the two continued along their path. He looked for others to trick, but by then word had escaped that Grey One was Prickly One and to be respected.

And now he takes his own time.

The moral of this story (Indian stories don't have morals, or even endings but this one does when I tell it) is as follows: talk as reasonably as you want, be as nice as you want, bend over backwards for civility if you feel you must, but if you don't have some thorns, motherfuckas gonna walk all over you.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Bonus Post: Interesting Link Dump

First, a blog about training with a tomahawk. Check it out. Most online material on the tomahawk is long on cool pictures but short on actual training info, as in stuff you can actually do rather than 3 or 4 minutes of a guy fondling a hawk and talking about it. As far as I can tell, this guy just does google fu and compiles info, some of it pretty good. I really like the swinging log drill (Check the videos section) that they do in the video; it is from a Paladin Press video that is on my Christmas list. In the end, I just love the tomahawk, even if I keep the woodsman's pal on my bugout rig. It is my more elegant weapon from a more civilized age. When asked how I justify it, it is with a quote from The Glory Road about the hero's sword-it gives me courage to hold the fucking thing when I'm terrified.

Next up is a webcomic I have been reading, a new one that tickles me in so many unpleasant ways, Lulu Cthulhu It is just as adorable as it sounds. Considering that my daughter sleeps with not one but two stuffed Cthulhu plushies, and has "Night Night Cthulhu" in her phrase list, and is occasionally sung to sleep with Monster Magnet's All Friends and Kingdom Come, I suppose I just cannot resist a bit of mythos humor. In any case, I find the comic's artwork deliciously squee-able, and all four comics that have been posted so far have brought a smile to my face. So I pass it on, like the Necronomicon, to you, beloved reader, in hopes that you will not be dead or insane by dawn. It is your choice, of course, to open that shit.

And with a tip of the tinfoil hat to Mr. Zane at the Cliffs, I present this little gem: African Country Set to Make Breaking Wind (We all call this 'farting'-the editor) A Crime Just remember, if they outlaw farting, only outlaws will accidentally shit themselves. Actually, I seriously want this to happen here. I can't wait for the forensic analysis of 'He who smelt it dealt it'-and I'm looking forward to CSI: Fart Squad. Goddamn I love me some poop jokes.

Welp, I'm afraid I'm out of material and out of weed. Get outta here you sick fucks.

a/k/a Chris By-The-Throat

So I watched a/k/a Tommy Chong today, a documentary about Chong's 2004 Drug Paraphernalia case in which some up and coming neocon star federal attorney decided to grill him for selling "water pipes" from his online store. According to the documentary, they spent $12 million bucks and used 2000 active duty law enforcement officers to do this (Well, they prosecuted a little over 50 other cases) in an attempt to crack down on those who sell drug paraphernalia-they consider it a secondary profit on the drug war.

In any case, because I'm a good helpful citizen, and I am happy to help the Feds bankrupt themselves, I have a list of other companies that you pig jackoffs might want to prosecute, as they are obviously drug paraphernalia sellers as well.

American Produce Distributors
- Friendly fruit company, or drug enablers? This video may help explain.

What about Zig Zag? Or Randy's? Both are the rolling papers of choice for many stoners. Hey, what about Pepsi co? You can make a damn fine gravity bong out of an empty two liter. Shit, I could go all day. What about reynolds wrap? With enough tinfoil you can turn damn near anything into a bong-you can make a removable slide bowl and stick it in a fucking rubber duck.

Hell, what about the motherfuckers who sell cheap tire gauges and brillo pads aka EVERY GAS STATION EVER? I'm pretty sure every crime committed by crackheads can be blamed on those who make ersatz crack pipes available to a public who cannot be trusted with the awesome responsibility of a glass water pipe.

Or here is an idea-how about you miserable jackbooted fucks shut your bleeding cunt mouths and leave decent people alone? Man, wouldn't that be great? You'd have 12 million dollars more to waterboard brown people with and I can sit on my porch smoking a 'water pipe' and we can both pretend that the other person doesn't exist.