May 31, 2005

At Normandy

Helen's holiday weekend was spent in Normandy, where she took some amazing, poignant photographs. You can check them out and read her feelings about being there right here.

Posted by Ilyka at 07:52 PM | Comments (1)

Mine No Tomato

Man has a point:

Because the churches have lost the power to stigmatise deviants, their decay has opened the door to a raft of foreign religions and spiritual therapies, and it is now possible for us to cobble together our own spiritual club sandwiches. But, precisely because these are individually tailored products, they do not catch on. What suits my tastes will not match yours. And they are not sustained by a reinforcing community. A world of consumer choice does not produce a shared religion.
(Via Amy Wellborn.)

Of course, you know me--mostly what that paragraph did was make me crave a club sandwich. Mmm, sandwich . . . .

I don't have time to go into my own ideas on the article, and it's one of those that'll interest maybe two of you and repulse the rest, so probably there's no reason for me to link it at all.

I'm throwing it up there on a discuss-or-don't basis anyway, though, because--did I tell you guys this already? I think I did--I'm moving, and the date for that's getting close enough now that I really have no business dinking around on weblogs, my own or others, so this post may be it for awhile.

I just thought I should advise everyone to expect this space to be blank for a week or two. Oh, you all expect that already! Never mind.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:32 AM | Comments (2)

They Let Me in on a Loophole

I mean, that's the only way to figure my inclusion in the debut of the Cotillion Ball. Well, that, or I bribed the doorman.

Confession time: I had to look up "cotillion." It's one of those words I thought I knew in context, or at least knew well enough to gloss over it on my merry way to the next sentence when I'd come across it in my reading . . . but I didn't actually know what in tarnation a "cotillion" was.

I am disappointed (but not entirely surprised) to learn that its origin is French:

Main Entry: co·til·lion Pronunciation: kO-'til-y&n, k&- Variant(s): also co·til·lon /kO-'til-y&n, k&-, ko-tE-(y)On/ Function: noun Etymology: French cotillon, literally, petticoat, from Old French, from cote coat
1 : a ballroom dance for couples that resembles the quadrille
2 : an elaborate dance with frequent changing of partners carried out under the leadership of one couple at formal balls
3 : a formal ball
Just for the record, Ilyka has never attended a formal ball in her life, what with her not even making it to high school prom and all. Turns out boys are more likely to ask the girls who don't turn beet-red, stutter, hyperventilate, and then flee down the hallway when a guy speaks to them. Who knew?

But hey, better late than never.

I sure can't complain about the company: Definitely a cut above what I'm used to. Check it out:

(Thanks to Beth, Jody, and Janette for putting it all together, and for looking the other way as I slipped past the bouncers.)

Posted by Ilyka at 09:26 AM | Comments (7)

May 28, 2005

You Know the One I Mean

Do you ever find yourself reading a site by someone you know you hate?

I don't mean someone you "know" personally or anything. I mean, you've read that blog before, and you've hated it, and you know when you go to read it the next time, you're going to hate it all over again.

Then you read it anyway.

Then you spend the next five minutes talking yourself out of writing about how much you hate that site on your own blog, because even though you'd feel so much better if even just one other person would show up and leave you a comment like "I know, I hate it too! It's just so hateable! I can't believe how much I hate that jerk!", etc. . . . even though a comment or two in support of your heretofore private hate-rave would be like having your hate-parking validated, even though it would be so welcome, you also know you'd feel like a real dick for writing a post that was nothing but a coldblooded slam on how exquisitely hateable you find another person's creative efforts.

And then you think about the other comments that would basically say, "So don't read it, then," and you think about what sage advice that is, and how often you've given it to others in the past, and how obvious it is, and you resolve not to read that site anymore because that is clearly the only sensible course of action.

This works for a couple of months or so, and then one night your defenses are down and you think, "Hey, I know: Seeing as I'm bored with everything else, let's go see what's happening at that site that I hate."

See, it's been awhile, and your memories of just exactly why you hate it, exactly how much you hate it, have gone all French impressionists in your mind. Besides, you can't imagine how it could possibly have become more repellent to you in the interim, because even though you don't remember specifically how much you hated it, you're pretty sure it was A LOT.

So surely, the only way your feelings towards it can go are towards the positive, because didn't you max out the hate for that site months ago? You had to have, right? So maybe this time you'll actually hate it less. Ooh, let's go see!


Uh . . .

Gaaahh . . .



Anyway. You know that blogger, the one who writes that really wretched, vile weblog? I completely hate that blogger.

Uh, obviously it's none of you? I mean I shouldn't even have to say that; I'm an asshole, yes, but I'm not so much of an asshole that I'd write a post like this about any of y'all. I am like 99.9% certain the person this is about (a) has no idea I read him/her and (b) has no idea who I am. And that's how it's going to stay, because I just resolved never to read that site again. I know, shut up! I mean it this time.

Posted by Ilyka at 08:26 AM | Comments (15)

May 26, 2005

Your Dating Skills Are AVERAGE!

Oh heavens, but I love taking dating quizzes designed for the opposite sex:

You scored a 67 out of a possible 100 points. You’re pretty good with the ladies, but you can be intimidated by a woman who is exceptionally attractive. There are some women out there that you consider to be “out of your league”.

Sometimes when you see a woman you’d like to approach you become immobilized with fear, and by the time you figure out what to say, she's gone…

There have probably been several times in your life when a woman lost interest in you, and you just couldn’t figure out why. Maybe she gave you her phone number and then didn’t return your calls, or maybe you went out on a few dates with her and things seemed to be going good, when all of a sudden she became mysteriously unavailable.

These paragraphs make it sound like I did worse than I did (it's a "how to pick up chicks" quiz, for those of you in the slow lane who haven't figured that out). But 67%?

Do the math, guys: That means if you can only manage to meet 5 new women a week, your odds are you score with 3.33 of them.

Hey, it beats zero.

I got tipped to this quiz by the boyfriend, who thought the author recommended strategies that were "too aggressive."

He does, in a sense. For example, let's go back to that first paragraph:

. . . but you can be intimidated by a woman who is exceptionally attractive. There are some women out there that you consider to be “out of your league”.
There is nothing wrong with being intimidated. In fact, if you really think she's out of your league, work that. Now, don't overdo. Don't be a pussy. Don't apologize for asking her what time it is or anything stupid like that. Don't apologize for existing. Overly wimpy is always bad.

But deferential, when you're trying to trade up, is good. You should be deferential. A really good-looking woman knows who's in her class and who isn't. You're not gonna bluff her, unless you're totally over the top. And if you do happen to be totally over the top, she's going to think you're gay, because most guys who do over-the-top with any finesse are gay. In my humble, personal experience, that is.

My point is, you wouldn't go up to Nicole Kidman and lay it on thick, would you? You wouldn't push your luck. In fact, if you were really clever (and pardon the sexism in this aside, but few men are)--if you were really clever, you'd be sort of nonplussed by her, as best you could fake that. THAT would get Nicole Kidman's attention, because when's the last time a man made Nicole feel like she lacks it? Long long time ago, if ever--that's when.

Women want the surprise package. Women want something out of the ordinary. Women want the moon to come up where the sun should be--just for a change. Just for something different. Women bore easily. You know how y'all make those jokes about women changing their minds and how six kinds of dumb that is?--It's not that we don't know our damn minds, it's that we're bored with our damn minds. We like the change-up.

I hear a lot of men bitching, "Damn, that's a lot to ask of a fellow." Pardon, amigo, but not really. It just gives preference to the fellows with a little creativity, is all.

And is that such an unfair advantage? What if all the advantages went to the men with beefcake?--You know what we'd have? A bunch of stupid cavepeople who hadn't figured out the wheel yet, that's what. But we'd all have the means to smash elephant skulls into magickal Viagra-esque potency power, and we'd probably have invented futbol norteamericano centuries ago. Oh, hoo-ray. We could be on Superbowl MCCCLXIV by now.

I don't think this quiz has it quite right, because it seems to think that dating success equals going balls-out for a woman. In my experience, the guys who take this advice seriously end up talked about (and emailed about, and IM'd about, and, and, and . . . ) to no end. Oh, they get the discussion, but they don't get laid. They become this running joke, with the final punchline being that you ran into him in Starbucks and ohmigawd, girl, not only was he totally bald but he was with this chick that I swear I saw last week on Jerry Springer. You know, the one with them three potential baby daddies?

But hell, I'm a woman myself, so don't trust me. Try it your own damn way.

(Via the boyfriend, who won't stop reading World O'Crap.)

Posted by Ilyka at 09:32 AM | Comments (5)

May 25, 2005


Just yes.

That show let me down. It got so stupid so fast. If I didn't have the love jones for Marcia Cross, I'd have given up on it many episodes before the finale.

Which, incidentally, sucked about as hard as a season finale can suck. Do you know what they did?

(Oh, wait! Helen might not know what they did yet. I'd better put it below the fold. Especially since the rest of you don't care anyway.)

They killed off the character played by the very easy-on-the-eyes Steven Culp in order to have Marcia Cross' character both framed for murder and pursued romanti-stalkerly by, ew, this.

This is why I need to remember that soap operas and Ilyka don't mix. They just rot my brain and break my heart.

Posted by Ilyka at 06:57 AM | Comments (2)

May 24, 2005

Feed the World

Would someone please tell me what makes people get so violently angry about genetically-modified food?

I get the concerns about its safety. I think some concern is valid. I think that organic foods taste better, and if I could afford to buy more of 'em, I would. As it is, I buy only organic milk, because I don't want to drink something full of recombinant bovine growth hormone. Granted, the risk to human health appears to be negligible, but I don't like the effect it has on dairy cows and, honestly?--If I don't have to have rBGH in my milk, why should I? That's my choice to make.

I don't drink a lot of milk anyway, so the extra expense of buying organic on that one works out, especially since the locally-available brands of it seem to be ultra-pasteurized with expiration dates far later than those on regular milk. When you're single and not consuming a lot of the stuff anyway, it makes sense to buy milk that will keep.

Although I do worry that someone's going to drop me a link now explaining how ultra-pasteurization is ultra-bad for you. Look: I only have so much money and so many hours in the day. I'm not going to live my life as though my chief goal were merely to extend its length. I'm into quality, not quantity.

Anyway, back to the GM foods: I was just reading this. Is it me, or this is a profoundly poor article? I'm looking for facts and details and I get this:

The Independent on Sunday can today reveal details of secret research carried out by Monsanto, the GM food giant, which shows that rats fed the modified corn had smaller kidneys and variations in the composition of their blood.

. . .

Doctors said the changes in the blood of the rodents could indicate that the rat's immune system had been damaged or that a disorder such as a tumour had grown and the system was mobilising to fight it.

This is probably just me, but: WHAT changes in the blood? I'm guessing it's not simple anemia (oh, pardon me, Brits: I mean an-aeoiusometimesy-mia--what you people do to spelling, I swear), because you'd think even the Independent would know what that is and be able to mention it. But what changes? Stupid paper won't tell me that, no. Instead it just tells me what the British politicians think:

. . . a senior British government source said ministers were so worried by the findings that they had called for further information.
Politicians always call for "further information." And this time, I don't blame them. Further information would be helpful, all right. Too bad the paper didn't print any.

But that's enough kicking the Independent for right now. What I'm not understanding at all is the Monsanto hate-train people against genetically-modified food are always boarding. Monsanto!--A word to provoke more hissing and spitting than a stadium full of angry cats. Evil, evil, super-wicked Monsanto.

Why is there this emotional component? You know, if there's one place strong feelings don't really belong, it's science. Strong feelings don't help you run a tight study, strong feelings don't help you classify your findings, strong feelings don't get you dick in science. Strong feelings hurt science, because every so often your study is going to tell you something you did not want to hear, and then what? If you're detached about it, it's back to the drawing board. If you're emotionally invested, it's back to the drawing board with sighs and regret. If you're wound up to the point some of the anti-GM crowd seems to be, though, science gets screwed, because what if the study shows genetically-modified corn is no more likely to kill you than the regular stuff? What if your findings don't match your feelings?

And I know what the counter-argument is: The counter-argument is that Monsanto, as an evil giant bug-killing cor-por-ay-shun, is hardly detached and unbiased and in this all for the good of science either. True enough. I was really hoping we didn't have to point out here the obvious fact about corporations, which is that they exist to make money for their shareholders. And no, many of them don't have the best track record when it comes to fully disclosing the results of their research.

But I don't get the rage, and I don't buy that Monsanto's only playing around with genes and food to make enormous evil sums of money and kill us all in the process. First of all, dead people don't buy shit. Second of all, someone who's starving from a bad harvest doesn't care whether his kidneys might shrink a little from genetically-modified corn. Do you have any idea what truly starving people will eat? Have you never encountered dumpster divers? Lucky, sheltered, privileged you then.

Even if Monsanto's board really is out to kill everyone--and I've kind of almost got to admire the grand ambition of that scheme, same as I can't help liking C. Montgomery Burns when he yearns to destroy the sun--I guarantee you the little science dudes working there aren't. They're probably thinking it's kind of neat to go to work everyday with the noble goal of making better food, designing crops that resist pests and disease. Crops that grow in adverse conditions. Crops that feed people who otherwise wouldn't be eating.

I'm just saying, the left would never hurl the "evil" tag against companies screwing around with human genetics. That's all hunky-dory, and anyone who suggests it may not be, anyone who dares to voice concerns about it, is instantly consigned to Jesusland these days (and good riddance, you retarded Bible-thumping freak). But you tweak a few genomes on even one little kernel of sweet, innocent corn, and you're automatically a bastard?

That makes no sense to me at all.

Posted by Ilyka at 09:53 PM | Comments (7)

May 22, 2005

Turn It Up

What songs do you always, always leave playing (whether they're on .mp3, CD, or the radio)? What songs always sound good?

There aren't that many, if you're honest about it and really give it some thought. I have favorite songs, sure--but I'm not always in the mood for a particular favorite song. I like what Rob said:

Even on my own mix CDs that only contain songs I like, I come across songs that I don’t care to hear at that moment.
Exactly. Call it attention-deficit disorder or (please!) just revert to that old word, fickle, but that's how I am. I'm not always in the mood for whatever I recorded, even if at the time I recorded it I thought, "Oh, this is gonna be perfect." I've made the perfect mix a thousand times; unfortunately, it's always been the perfect mix for the me I was at that particular moment.

Songs that never get skipped for me no matter what (those I can recall right now, anyway) . . . yeah, most of them are cliches and/or embarrassing:

"Sweet Home Alabama:" I have no idea. I was born in New Jersey? I just like it, a lot. It picks me up when I'm feeling blue. If you think that's dumb, I suggest you don't get between me and a jukebox containing that song. I'll show you dumb.

"Train in Vain:" Yeah, who saw that coming?

"Back in Black:" Another 80s thing. And now I think of it, basically any AC/DC. I can wake up convinced that the day is not a classic metal kind of day, only to be seduced by a random AC/DC track in spite of myself. In fact, I could easily substitute "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" for "Back in Black." There was only one Bon Scott, and alas, he is dead, his scorched larynx buried with him.

(Did you know there is a Finnish AC/DC tribute band that plays only the Bon Scott tracks? Seriously:

The singer Timo Heinonen, however, would probably score quite high in a "Finnish Bon Scott Competition", if there was going to be one
It takes a Finn to write a blurb like that--proud, but modest. One of these days I need to write about my first visit to Finland's homepage--Finland's PINK homepage complete with bad MIDI and animated .GIF of a flying pig. This was Finland's official government page and no, I'm not making that up. I'm sometimes not convinced Finland is a real country, and that homepage didn't dissuade me from the notion that they're just faking countryhood, while counting on the rest of us not to notice. Someone should alert the U.N.)

The Van Halen cover of "Pretty Woman:" I know I'm supposed to get all eloquent about what a magical talent Roy Orbison was, but as far as I'm concerned, the guy lived mainly so that Van Halen could cover "Pretty Woman." SO SUE ME.

"Let's Go," The Cars. I like the nightlife, baby.

"Have You Seen Your Mother Baby, Standing in the Shadow?" Or "Let's Spend the Night Together." I don't like the slow Stones songs. They need to be double-time, greedy-speedy, or I'm not much into them.

"Anyhow, Anyway, Anywhere." They never play this on the radio. You know why? Because the Radio Gods have decreed that, should the country need Who tunes, it must content itself with one more tired-ass round of "Won't Get Fooled Again." That's why.

"Sweet Jane." I owe my brother for introducing me to that song. I owe him double for playing me both the original release and the oh-look-here-comes-Lou-to-add-back-in-the-arty-instrumental-bit-they-initially-left-out version. Me, I like the original; you lose momentum with the arty bit. Oh, and they never play this on the radio either, least not where I live, and while I'm on that sore subject may I just say fuck you, Clear Channel.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:06 AM | Comments (5)

My Dictations Should Be More Like This

Then be happy I would. Mmm.

Posted by Ilyka at 09:22 AM | Comments (0)

May 21, 2005

Halfwitted Fisher Price Boat People

I don't know, that's just kind of what they look like to me--the cartoons in this Towers-of-Hanoi type puzzle game. Rules explained in Engrish here; a solution (that I do not promise is the best or most efficient) is below the fold.

First, a review of the rules:

--Only the adults (the cop, the mother, or the father) may operate the raft.

--Maximum two occupants on the raft for any trip.

--A parent of sex a cannot be left with children of sex b, unless parent of sex b also is present.

--The thief cannot be left with any family member unless the cop also is present.


--Choose a sex, male or female, and denote it sex a.

--Send the cop and the thief on the raft to the destination riverbank.

--Return the cop alone.

--Send the cop with a child of sex a.

--Return the cop and the thief.

[The destination riverbank now contains one occupant, a child of sex a.]

--Send a parent of the same sex as a with the second child of sex a.

--Return the parent alone.

[Destination riverbank occupants (2): Both children of sex a.]

--Send both parents.

--Return the parent whose sex is b.

[Destination riverbank occupants (3): Parent and two children, all of sex a.]

--Send the cop and the thief.

--Return the parent of sex a.

[Destination riverbank occupants (4): Two children of sex a, the cop, and the thief.]

[Originating riverbank occupants (4): Both parents and two children of sex b.]

--Send both parents.

--Return the parent of sex b.

[Destination riverbank occupants (5): Parent and two children, all of sex a; the cop; and the thief.]

[Originating riverbank occupants (3): Parent and two children of sex b.]

--Send the parent of sex b with one of the remaining children, also of sex b.

--Return the cop and the thief.

[Destination riverbank occupants (5): Both parents and 3 (out of 4) children.]

[Originating riverbank occupants (3): Cop, thief, and one child of sex b.]

--Send the cop with the last child.

--Return the cop.

--Send the cop and the thief, and you're done.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:36 AM | Comments (2)

May 19, 2005

You Seem Like a Pretty Nice Fella

No thanks to, I wasted an hour this morning on the Bill Cosby Fun Game, and it is fun. Just look:

It's got pudding, it's got murders. What more do you need in a game?

Posted by Ilyka at 06:05 PM | Comments (1)

May 15, 2005


Yup, me too:

My Gmail account is being swamped by hundreds of German spam mails today – literally hundreds of them, un-filtered in my inbox.
Even my job's reporting getting them, which means I get 30 emails from supervisors a day begging employees not to open 'em, not to read 'em, and for pity's sake not to call the help desk about 'em. On the home front, I'm getting them sent not to my public email address, but to the one I guard like Fort Knox. Years of vigilance down the drain like so much spoilt sauerbraten.

It's irksome, having to delete them all. Look, German rightwingers: I don't care. You've got pet issues you want to ramble about?

Get a weblog.

Posted by Ilyka at 03:14 PM | Comments (5)

May 13, 2005

'Cause He Believes in Me

Oh, Patrick--

But I believe in love.
I believe in tariffs.
I believe in magic.
And I believe in you
I believe in you too, Mr. Buchanan! I believe in all kinds of things you'd feel at home with: Cockroaches, mildewed tile grout, Phthirus pubis, flat tires, basement floods, colonoscopies, Ashlee Simpson . . . all the myriad delights and fancies of life we could happily do without.


Oh neat, lists. Here's what Helen wants from the world. Here's Jim's version. I'd list my own, but I don't have a week to give over to it. For now I'll just second this request of Helen's:

Destiny's Child. You know what I'm talking about. Make them fuck right off and never destroy the radio airwaves again. And while you're at it, take Girls Aloud with you. They're whipping me.
Embarrassing question time: Am I the only one who hears "Lose My Breath" as "Lose My Breast?" Is that just me?
Baby boy, make me lose my breast
Bring the noise, make me lose my breast
Hit me hard, make me lose my (Hah Hah)
It kind of sounds like she's begging for a horrible breastfeeding accident that way. I don't think I could do transcription for Destiny's Child, is all I'm saying.


One of my boyfriend's cats died yesterday. I was going to mention that but then I realized technically, that's catblogging. So forget I mentioned it. And for pity's sake don't try to say anything kind about it.


To get our minds off dead animals we watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. At some point the who-cares-what-his-character-name-is, we-all-know-it's-Charlie-Kaufman guy said something to his girl Clementine about ceaseless trap-flapping not necessarily equaling intimacy, sharing, bonding, something like that.

At that, the boyfriend pointed to the screen and said, "See? See? Listen to the man."

"Don't compare me to that crazy drunk slut," I shot back. "I would never do half the dumb shit she does. Walking on frozen rivers, breaking into empty beach houses, dyeing my hair Day-Glo colors--"

"I wasn't comparing you to her," the boyfriend interrupted, "I was just saying you need to give us quiet types a break once in awhile."

"Though now that you mention it," he added, "You are sort of like all her worst traits, without any of the fun ones."

So now I have to bury a boyfriend AND a cat.

Posted by Ilyka at 07:10 PM | Comments (5)

May 12, 2005

Maximum Suck

Of course the minute I finished typing out that title I started questioning it: Has this blog actually achieved maximum levels of suck? Maybe it could yet suck more, and given that I write it . . . yeah. So think of it as approaching maximum suck. Maximum suck in 5 . . . 4 . . . 3 . . . .

I was actually going to tell you yesterday that the reason for the extreme suckage is that I am moving beginning of June and have thus been Very Very Busy; but that is a lie. The real reason is that I have become hooked on the forums. The forums are . . . they're kind of . . . well, they're a little like FARK but with better quality control. A better quality-to-suck ratio.

This is mostly due to the ceaseless efforts of Pinkerton's team of moderators, particularly his girlfriend, and as much as I'm enjoying the non-suck humor efforts of the participants on the forums, I have to admit I'm enjoying her treatment of the suck efforts almost as much, if not more. So far my favorite has been her handling of the guy who, after being hassled by a local policeman for wearing an offensive t-shirt, retaliated by calling 911 and singing verses of "Fuck tha Police" to the dispatcher.

Read that again: Our Hero tied up the emergency line to sing the only rap lyrics white kids know by heart to an innocent third party who had nothing to do with his dumb problem. Except, he didn't know the lyrics by heart; he had them, I'm not kidding, written down in his pocket. Written down. Carried on his person. In case of emergencies just such as this one, the sort of incident which the rest of us would classify more as Definitely-Not-An-Emergency, You-Fucking-Cretinous-Pusmonger.

And still he walks the earth a free man. There is no justice in this life.

I do nothing more than lurk on sites like these, obviously. For one thing I don't own a copy of Photoshop and for another, more important thing, I don't own any talent.

So that's been my latest time-waster, my way of avoiding the latest inevitable, this chore of moving. I'm not going to go into a big riff about how much moving sucks, because that would be sort of like going into a big riff about breaking up with someone or losing a job or--we've all been there, we all already know, and we've all already thought up enough funny things to say about how rotten it is. Enough.

I'll be honest with you, I also seem to have a case of the blahs that have been going around. Lately I'm tempted not to update at all and am only driven to post by the flood of trackback and comment spam that descends on this site if I'm away from it for more than three or four days. Then I think, what I should do is email my kind host Pixy Misa and ask him to just wipe this bitch and subsume the server space back into the collective, where it can eventually be used in the service of good instead of mediocrity. Wouldn't that really be for the best? You're as tired of looking at that Lego caricature up there as I am, admit it.

Speaking of my good host, I do prefer his handling of that New York Times piece about blogging to any other. It's been linked all over, that NYT article, but if you haven't read it I'll summarize: The New York Times is all, "These bloggers, they're all like hassling us for not doing our jobs fact-checking, you know, like our research and stuff, and yet they're all, like, totally unprofessional and irresponsible and, you know, partisan, and it's just like, I mean, who does their fact-checking, you know?"

Actually, it would have been shorter if I'd just summarized that with, "It quotes Wonkette as a blogging authority." Does that not tell you everything you need to know about it right there? Because if that doesn't, it should. They needed to speak with An Actual Blogger, so they called up some Denton-paid ditz, a creature whose greatest notoriety was achieved by pimping the journal of a whoring Washinton intern.

Anyway, Pixy rebuts the New York Times beautifully. You should read it. (And thanks, Jim, for the tip.)

Finally I am enjoying the debut of Huffington's Toast, because good parody brings a tear to my eye. What's not to love about Arianna Huffington?

Some have complained that Arianna’s blog does not permit comments. Please do not be offended. It is just that readers would be confused to see the ignorant ravings of proles and potato-eaters, side by side with the genius of John Cusack and Paris Hilton.
It's so moving the way she's always looking out for people. Having God on your side is nice, but having Arianna is even better.
Posted by Ilyka at 07:00 PM | Comments (9)

May 08, 2005

Yes It Is Indeed a Dumb Quiz Post

Lifted from la fabulosa Margi (who is a mother! And today is Mother's Day! Happy Mother's Day, Margi!), I've found my inner European:

Your Inner European is Italian!

Passionate and colorful.

You show the world what culture really is.

Who's Your Inner European?

You know I would never have posted this if it had come out French, don't you?

I want those boots, incidentally. Not generally a shoe person but those boots, those boots are divine.

Posted by Ilyka at 06:56 PM | Comments (7)

Did You Call Your Mother Yet?

Well? Did you?

I can't write anything about my mother because she would kill me (and she'd really kill me if I posted her photo online). My mother would hyperventilate if she even thought I might post something about her. My mother's a very private person. So I'm going to do my best to help her out by not writing a word about her.

But she's a fantastic, amazing, awesome mom, better than I deserve. I don't think it's giving away too much to say that.

Call your mother if you're lucky enough to have her among the living.

Posted by Ilyka at 05:53 PM | Comments (1)

May 07, 2005

Let Me In

So you tell me: 8:00 a.m. on a Saturday morning--is that a good time to turn on the radio, the radio you keep in the bedroom, and pump up the volume on the Tejano music? Or is that a bad time?

Oh, who am I kidding: Any time of day is a good time for a fiesta, am I right? Any time at all. Life . . . life should be una fiesta continua.

And I . . . I should be allowed to move into the senior apartments. You know, the senior living communities? I know I'm not old enough. Then again, aren't you only as old as you feel? Well, I feel like gathering with the elders around the 6:00 p.m. rerun of Murder, She Wrote. We'll do that after dinner, served promptly at 5:00. By 7:00 p.m. we'll all have repaired to our separate quarters for an hour of reading or knitting before bedtime, at 8:00 p.m.

Sounds heavenly.

Let me in. I will do everything in my power to atone for the age difference, seniors. I will mow the lawns--you can fire the landscaper! I will play bingo with you. I will take up golf. You don't allow pets at these places . . . ? Fine. The cats are history. I'm tired of cleaning the litterbox anyway.

Let me in. I will drive you to your doctor's appointments. I will pick up your prescription refills at the pharmacy. I will cry with you over the obituaries. I will be so good, so helpful, I swear. Come on, I already have the housedress collection. I will let you borrow one if you want. The pink gingham is my favorite, but--you like it? Hey, that is flattering on you! So take it, Mrs. Mcgillicuddy. No, I insist. Take it. It's yours.

Down with age discrimination. Let me in.

Posted by Ilyka at 03:22 PM | Comments (7)

Thank You Medicos

It's the little things that make my job worthwhile.

The little things like looking up the meaning of phrases like, "responsive only to deep sternal rub."

Oh sternal rub, how I love you. You are cruel, yes, but you are cruel to be kind.

Or to permit me to lie down comfortably on my own bed, whatever.

See, if you have this person in your bed who is already sound asleep when you try to enter it? And that person has commandeered the center of said bed and has flailed his or her limbs out to cover the rest of the surface like a poor imitation of a Da Vinci illustration? And all your soft entreaties to "Please move over so I can lie down, please?" are going ignored? Ignored and snored at?

Sternal rub.

Wakes 'em every time.

Posted by Ilyka at 10:05 AM | Comments (4)

May 02, 2005

Cult of the Victim

I'm so sick of the whining and the demands for special treatment:

In an official statement, one 'pro-family' advocacy group warned that Mrs. Bush's jokes at the President's expense were in violation of the Biblical command that wives respect their husbands.
Get stuffed, Rev. Roy DeLong:
"One of the Proverbs says that 'a virtuous woman is a crown to her husband, but she that maketh him ashamed is as rottenness in his bones," notes Mr. DeLong. "I bet President Bush is feeling pretty rotten today."
And I'll bet he isn't. Say what you will about him, but George W. Bush has never struck me as the sort of fellow who has to wear a cup just to shield his manhood from a dumb joke about his being in bed by 9:00 p.m. most nights. That's the difference between real men and faux: The genuine articles can laugh at themselves.

Besides, if the First Lady were a real Desperate Housewife, she would have blurted out that the President cries after he ejaculates. Now that's rotten.

(Via Little Miss Attila, who says some social conservatives are "dumb as boards." That's an insult to boards in this case, ma'am.)

FACT-CHECKING MY ASS UPDATE: If it looks too ridiculous to be true, it probably is:

“Our computers have seen more viruses than a pediatrician’s office,” said TVC Chairman Rev. Louis P. Sheldon. “Today’s phony press release is just the latest dirty trick aimed at discrediting our efforts on behalf of America’s churches.”

We thought Mrs. Bush’s remarks at the correspondents’ dinner were hilarious. We are very pleased that she is America’s First Lady.”

As for the Reverend Roy DeLong, he appears to be fictional.

Caught by the boyfriend, who I will now proceed to humiliate by dating the pharmacist. As for Drudge, MSNBC, Slate, and others ostensibly taken in, they'll have to find their own remedies.

Posted by Ilyka at 11:31 PM | Comments (3)

An Aborted Attempt at Reading the Rags

I don't know why I started reading this piece in the New York Times magazine. I knew beforehand what to expect, and the author delivered:

How has it come to pass that outfitting a dog with a $1,380 Hermes crocodile-and-calfskin leash-and-collar set doesn't seem too absurd -- too shameful?
It does seem shameful--outside The Center of the Universe Manhattan.
How is it that our sense of humanity has been transferred to members of the animal kingdom -- the domesticated and overbred as well as the wild and exotic -- so that we lavish affection, money and moral outrage on them while we gripe about the homeless instead of empathizing with their plight and ignore our elderly altogether?
Because when a dog pees on the grass, it's because he can't use a toilet? Because dogs don't grab your arm as you walk by and spray you with MD 20/20-flavored spittle as they beg you for "bus fare?" Because dogs don't write hectoring how-can-you-be-happy-when-the-children-are-starving-in-India pieces like this one? Am I getting warmer?

I read this after an article in the same issue about Karl Lagerfeld's diet. Sadly, that was the better article. Re-read that: An article about the hassles of ordering powdered protein sachets from Paris to mix up into diet drinks--vive L'Slim Fast!--was better than the article about fools who spoil their pets rotten.

After those two treats, I was a little gun-shy about reading the feature: "The Way of the Commandos." But it's not bad and I got a kick out of this:

A couple of hours after [Iraqi Special Police Commandos leader] Adnan issued his AK-47 threat, I sat with him watching TV. This was business, not pleasure. The program we were watching was Adnan's brainchild, and in just a few months it had proved to be one of the most effective psychological operations of the war. It is reality TV of sorts, a show called ''Terrorism in the Grip of Justice.'' It features detainees confessing to various crimes. The show was first broadcast earlier this year and has quickly become a nationwide hit. It is on every day in prime time on Al Iraqiya, the American-financed national TV station, and when it is on, people across the country can be found gathered around their television sets.
Reality television: Is there anything it can't do?
Posted by Ilyka at 10:50 PM | Comments (0)

This Blogroll Does Not Go to 11

Oh, look, Laurence Simon is hurting feelings again by noting that some blogs are more valuable to him than others. Imagine that. Clearly someone didn't get the memo that We Are All Special, Each and Every One of Us, In Our Own Unique Ways And in Exactly Equal Measure.

Balls to that.

I'll play too. If I could only read 10 blogs, those blogs would be:

10. Ace of Spades
9. Hubris
8. Kesher Talk
7. Chez Miscarriage
6. Everyday Stranger
5. Meryl Yourish
4. Jay Pinkerton
3. Andrea Harris
2. Tim Blair
1. A Small Victory

Let the delinking begin! I was going to turn comments off to prevent anyone getting all eighth grade on me about this, but luckily then I remembered that those of you who comment regularly are in at least the ninth grade, not the eighth, which means that instead of rumbling by the bike racks we can handle this maturely, behind the bleachers, like real freshmen.

There's no crying in baseball. Shouldn't be any in blogging, either.

UPDATE: I have an idea: I will add a top 10 list to this, because the facetious "top 10 lists," they are the latest and greatest thing! Ever!

Top 10 Activities Laurence Simon Is Currently Enjoying Rather Than Crying Over My Failure To Include His Blog On My List of Ten, Even Though I Was Not Above Bumming This Meme From Him:

10. Finding new ways to love bingo.
9. Gardening.
8. Putting the things harvested from the garden onto the grill.
7. Grilling.
6. Eating.
5. Photographing cats.
4. Playing with cats.
3. Hating on the Palestinian Authority and other Jew-hating terrorist scum.
2. Enjoying the love of a good woman.

And the number one thing Laurence Simon is probably doing instead of whining that he's not on my 10-blog list:

1. Reading better weblogs than this one.

Number one is a terrific idea, come to think of it.

Posted by Ilyka at 12:53 AM | Comments (14)

May 01, 2005

Least-Loved Pope Stories

Andrea Harris, the Pope, Some Guy, and 22 questions that are stunning in their stupidity. We are talking skull-pummelingly, D-U-M dumb, like Rocky V dumb. Like I need to go watch a couple of Steven Seagal movies back to back just to regain some semblance of intellect.

Really, though, you have to love Andrea for wading beyond the first page of a site that actually contains this blurb about its author:

Matthew Fox might well be the most creative, the most comprehensive, surely the most challenging religious-spiritual teacher in America.
See, I would have seized up and started croaking inarticulately something about the virtue of humility right there, before I could read any further. In fact, I haven't read any further; I've got this stomach bug and I've thrown up enough times already today, thank you.

Anyway, go read the Andrea. Even if you think Pope Benedict XVI is a Nazi--no, especially if you think Pope Benedict XVI is a Nazi. Oops; there I go with my scoldy theocratic commanding again. Must work on that.

UPDATE: The boyfriend pointed out--because he's touchy about things like this, on account of his being descended from the dirty Huns himself, don't you know--that here it is playoffs time, and to date we have not heard one word from Mavericks player Dirk Nowitzki denouncing Hitler. NOT ONE WORD. Doesn't he have a special responsibility as a celebrity to do this? Doesn't he want to use his influence for good rather than evil?

This is an outrage. It is the responsibility of Germans everywhere to denounce Hitler on a daily basis; how else can the rest of us be assured that they're not up to more fascist deviltry? I'm thinking a UN resolution calling for all of them to tattoo "HITLER WAS BAD" on their foreheads in English, French, German, Italian, Russian, and Mandarin. About 8-pt type ought to do it, I think. Not sure about the Mandarin. But honestly, I just don't know how else we can be expected to rest easy in our beds while those Krauts are permitted to go about their days not denouncing Hitler continually.

Posted by Ilyka at 01:10 AM | Comments (2)