Sunday, August 31, 2008

The following stories are all kind-of related, but taken at once it's a long read, so I'm breaking them down into four installments.

Part I
Enter The Dragon


Two men came into the store to see if I would buy their used scooter. One guy was grizzled and leathery. He had the skin tone of a chain-smoker, tanned and loose. His ragged shirt with torn-off sleeves was unbuttoned halfway down his wrinkly chest. His arms were covered with old, faded tattoos. They were the variety of tattoo you would see on members of the Manson family: Cryptic symbols and words, haphazardly spattered over the forearms-- like he had done it himself with a needle and a bic pen.

This guy was interesting, but the second guy even more so. He had curly white hair in a sort-of mullet, like a mall Santa in the off-season, or like a slightly more flamboyant Kenny Rogers. He was portly, but not jolly. He wore a flannel shirt and jeans, and in his arm he cradled a little chihuahua, Paris HIlton style.

They approached me and asked if I would buy a "Kwinchki" scooter. I think they meant Quingqi, a Chinese Sh$%box of unparalleled crappiness. I matter-of-factly said no, and the first guy asked me why. I explained that they were really crummy scooters and I could buy them new for less than $300. They left, the first guy muttering something about "less than $300" under his breath.

They were such an odd combination, that taken together I can only assume that at some point the pair were crowned King and Queen of a Prison Prom.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I've been trying to persuade myself to write more frequently. So I'm writing in hopes that something halfway entertaining will come out, but I'm not very optimistic about it. I've been re-imagining my blog a little bit these past several months. A lot of the anonymity of blogging has vanished. I've gotten in trouble more than once with people who have read things here that offended them. I don't want to censor my comments all the time for fear some cyber-stranger will take offense and demand an apology. I like publishing my opinions and telling my stories. It's really discouraging that I have to be accountable for them in real life. I guess I better get used to it.

One obvious remedy is to use fake names for people, but that only goes far enough to prevent people from finding my blog by random googling. If they read this, they'll know I'm talking about them anyway, so I can't be as bold as I'd like to be. Meanwhile I'm getting two paragraphs into this post and still no entertaining anecdotes have sprung out of my brain.

If you're still reading this, you are a real trooper. I can't believe anybody would read this far into an obviously empty post. Give yourself a pat on the back. Nice work.

Anybody watching the olympics? I've only seen a little bit. I think the athletes are all a bit crazy. I admire them, but at the same time I think they're a little out-of-round if you know what I mean.

I was on the swim team my first year of high school. Our school didn't actually have a pool, so every day our team rode the bus to our rival school and we trained there. It was good to be part of the team. I enjoyed it a lot. I wasn't bad either. I probably would have been pretty good if I had stuck with it, but I became too depressed to keep it up.

Well, this is so boring I'm depressing myself. I think I'll go eat some cookies now, or stick my head in the oven, or something.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Anglerfish live deep in the ocean, in the darkest abyss. They are known for having scary fangs and skeletal faces, blind eyes, and dangly lures hanging from appendages in front of their mouths. But what you may not know is that some anglerfish have strange breeding methods.

From Wikipedia:
At birth, male ceratioids are already equipped with extremely well developed olfactory organs that detect scents in the water. When it is mature, the male's digestive system degenerates, making him incapable of feeding independently, which necessitates his quickly finding a female anglerfish to prevent his death. The sensitive olfactory organs help the male to detect the pheromones that signal the proximity of a female anglerfish. When he finds a female, he bites into her skin, and releases an enzyme that digests the skin of his mouth and her body, fusing the pair down to the blood-vessel level. The male then atrophies into nothing more than a pair of gonads, which releases sperm in response to hormones in the female's bloodstream indicating egg release. This extreme sexual dimorphism ensures that, when the female is ready to spawn, she has a mate immediately available.

Did you catch that? Basically the male anglerfish bites onto a female and then atrophies into nothing more than a pair of gonads! And this is so that when the female is ready to breed she's got sperm immediately available. It's like having portable testicles, "pocket nuts" if you prefer.

This reminds me of two things: The first is that song by King Missile called "Detatchable Penis." Ten points to anyone who remembers that song. The second is what it feels like to be a man when your mate is trying to get pregnant. . .

. . . reduced to little more than a pair of gonads.