She's on every shelf.

It's been three weeks without work, so far, and I'm not looking for work. Still loving being unemployed. I sleep for a few hours, wake for a few, with no sensible schedule, no concept of day or night. There's still an alarm clock, still in a prominent position where it's visible, but it's only for chuckles and shaking my head. Glanced at it just now and it says it's 12:30, but I don't know whether that's AM or PM, especially since the blinds are down because I'm usually nude or almost. Barely even know the days of the week. Because it doesn't frickin' matter.


To this wonderful life I say, Where've you been all my life? No job's wages seem worth the difference between that and this...

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On a bluer note, I went shopping, and found sadness down every aisle. These are the crackers my wife liked, and I know exactly which shelf they're on, because she often accompanied me to this store, to that shelf… to every shelf... to the streets and parks, theaters and restaurants of this city.

To my wonderful wife I say, Life will be less without those reminders of you. Thanks for all of it... but soon I'll have to say goodbye again. There's somewhere else to be, for the last few chapters of this life.

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Fringe scheme to reverse 2020 election splits Wisconsin Republicans 

“We don’t wear tinfoil hats,” he said. “We’re not fringe.”

From living here, Wisconsin Republicans being bonkers is so ordinary I tend to tune it out. I was aware of most of the threads in this coverage from the New York Times, but seeing it all tied together made me need an Alka-Seltzer. 

Surprising, the article doesn't mention the related dingbattery of former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman. With a $600,000+ plus budget so far, he's trying to jail Democrats as part of his state-funded 'investigation' into the 2020 election

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Seattle-area Board of Health repeals decades-old helmet law 

The King County Board of Health voted 11-2 Thursday to repeal a law requiring every bicyclist to wear a helmet. 

The repeal is not a refutation of how helmet wearing improves safety. Instead it reflects a growing understanding among Board of Health members and bicycle advocates that the helmet law has been inequitably enforced, with a disproportionate number of citations going to homeless people and people of color.

Seems likes a good law for a better world, but in America you can't trust cops to enforce any law fairly.

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After his assassination, Lincoln's body was railroaded across the country, with public viewings by huge crowds in ten cities. With an open casket. Oh, and his son, who'd died three years earlier, came along for the ride.

Hey, I love trains. I'd like a tour like Lincoln's, preferable while I'm alive, but alas, I'll never be able to afford it.

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Louisiana man jailed for 44 years on rape charges is freed as prosecutor dismisses charges after judge calls for new trial 

But even as charges are dropped, the prosecutor offers one last shiv: "Just in case anyone has any doubt, no this is not a declaration of innocence at all." What a monumental ass of a man, and he's a Democrat.

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As police regain parts of Ottawa, interim chief vows to hold all participants accountable 

So far on Saturday, police in the nation's capital say they've arrested 47 people, bringing the total to 170, and have towed 53 vehicles since Friday. They also said they've seized 22 license plates and suspended 11 commercial vehicle operator registrations.

While some demonstrators have left the area of their own accord, interim police Chief Steve Bell said police will pursue charges.

"If you are involved in this protest, we will actively look to identify you and follow up with financial sanctions and criminal charges," he said. "This investigation will go on for months to come ... we will hold people accountable for taking our streets over."

It's awful to be rooting for the police, and I wish there'd been some other way. Sadly, when rectums insist on pooping, the poop needs to be cleaned up. 

Political insight you won't find anywhere else! 

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Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river 

Yes, that Suzanne, from Leonard Cohen's marvelous song. 

“I don’t want to be a footnote in someone else’s story,” she tells me. It’s a line she repeats often throughout our time together, like some kind of mantra. Yet in carrying Cohen’s projection of her around for so long, Suzanne has disappeared under the weight of “Suzanne.”

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After a Jewish lawmaker’s impassioned speech, Wyoming’s conservative legislature rejects critical race theory ban 

Well, yeah, it was 'rejected' but… 

The bill garnered a majority of the chamber’s votes, 35, but not the two-thirds needed to advance the bill. The 24 lawmakers who voted against advancing the bill included a significant number of the chamber’s 51 Republicans.

Click the above link, though, for an eloquent "explain-it-to-idiots" speech from Rep. Andy Schwartz (Democrat, and Jewish).

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Her boyfriend killed her baby while she was at work. Oklahoma might lock her up for life. 

Everyone who investigated the case agreed that Hogue did not kill her son or participate in the abuse. She hadn’t even been home at the time of the violence. But in the ultimate act of victim-blaming against a grieving mother, the state of Oklahoma decided to punish her for her son’s death: In November, Hogue was convicted of first-degree murder, even though she never laid a hand on the boy. At a sentencing hearing on Friday, a judge will decide whether to send her to prison for life, as the jury recommended.

Update: A kindhearted fascist judge gave her 16 months in prison, with credit for time already served.

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Bob Fosse's ground-breaking 1972 film took on Hollywood taboos and became a hit 

I'd guess I was 20 when I saw Cabaret, and what I remember is that it's bleak and depressing, with Nazis and some good songs. 

Says here, though, that "Cabaret's matter-of-fact but largely implicit depiction of queerness was ground-breaking for its time." I remember nothing gay. Never comprehended, never knew it until today. Just how white-bread was my upbringing anyway? Whoooosh! 

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GM brings back Austin Powers to shag for electric vehicles 

It's nice if/that GM is switching to electric vehicles, and of course I hate advertising in general, but I do not understand this ad at all. Is Mike Myers the face of the future? Is Austin Powers pertinent or even much remembered 25 years later? Is this commercial funny? For me, it just shouts Cringe!

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Walgreens breaks pledge and gives to Sedition Caucus 

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"Accidents happen" is a cliché, but auto accidents (and other accidents) are preventable and predictable. 

Corporate interests intervened similarly in the early days of the automobile. At first, mobs in cities would descend upon drivers who struck pedestrians, accusing them of “car murder.” A 100-year industry campaign followed, shifting blame to pedestrians or cyclists or individual driver behavior with that all-too-familiar passive voice — my car hit this person — manufacturing consent for mass death. Today, Singer notes, accidental opioid overdoses can seem indiscriminate — what drug companies want you to think — until you examine research that reveals how they skyrocket in places where auto plants shut down. “You can call every one of those overdoses an accident. Or you could see the complex ways that risk lines up,” she says.

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Border agents test first-generation robocops 

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Titanic with a cat 

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One-word newscast, because it's the same news every time...

lǝunɹq ɔn˥-uɐǝſ
Rosalie Kunoth-Monks
Bappi Lahiri
Greg Tate
John Wesley
Sarah White

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 Mystery links  — Like life itself, there’s no knowing where you’re going:


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♫♬  Sing along with Doug
Cranky Old Man is annoyed and complains and very occasionally offers a kindness, along with anything off the internet that's made me smile or snarl. All opinions fresh from my ass. Top illustration by Jeff Meyer. Click any image to enlarge. Comments & conversations invited.
Tip 'o the hat to All Hat No Cattle, Linden Arden, ye olde AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, Captain Hampockets, CaptCreate's Log, John the Basket, LiarTownUSA, National Zero, Ran Prieur, Voenix Rising, and anyone else whose work I've stolen without saying thanks.
Extra special thanks to Becky Jo, Name Withheld, Dave S., and always Stephanie...


  1. Thanks for the Suzanne Verdal mention. I first heard the song in my parents' living room in mid-1967, sung by a woman friend with a lovely voice who played the guitar well enough to accompany herself solo. She played Suzanne and filled the house with profound joy mixed with a dash of sorrow: Leonard's lifelong poetry and lyric formula. I had no idea who the hell Leonard Cohen was; I HAD heard of Judy Collins, who had recorded Suzanne on her sixth album, In My Life, (Leonard's version would hit the streets about six months later on his first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen).

    I had no idea that Ms Collins was in New York pushing Leonard out of the wings and onto the stage, trying to overcome his paralyzing stage fright. Judy had started to feature Leonard in her act; they would sing a couple of duets of his songs, then he would scamper.

    I remember Phil (that was the singer's name) also played Leonard's "Hey, That's No Way to Say Goodbye" and a wonderful song by Ian Tyson called "Someday Soon". The latter led me to Ian and Sylvia and ultimately back to early outlaw country and Hank Williams and Jimmie Rodgers. I was 17. Today I turn 72, and that memory of Phil singing in my parents' living room is as real as a dime.

    I guess I should look her up before one of us checks out. Leonard's music, thankfully, will endure.


    1. Both songs I've heard, long ago in a different life. Stuff that tugs at ya like this... even without the lyrics you'd know what it was about...

    2. Here's Judy Collins singing Someday Soon two years after Phil sang it in my parents' living room . . .



    3. And Leonard Cohen, his band and his songbirds 40 years after Phil sang THIS song in the living room.



    4. There was a radio channel in Seattle, station identification forgotten, that played music like this, good music without being genre-specific. They'd never spin the hits, or the oldies, or anything you'd expect, but whatever they played was worth listening to. That was mostly the radio station I listened to, after growing up on KJR and KOL, and that's where I heard these songs.

      It was a good station, so I assume it was purchased by Clear Channel eons ago, and now it's 24/7 sports talk.

    5. Doug, there was good FM radio in Seattle at least through the 80s. I'm not a radio industry guy, so I don't know how other cities and other countries (like Canada, England, Australia, etc.) did at preserving the commercial model that good music with sparce, low-key commercials sells enough of the products the low-key commercials are pushing to make the model work.

      Of course, what was then called "college radio", fairly low-power FM stations that played very good music, no "hits" (heaven protect us from hits) and had no commercials because the facilities were part of the radio curriculum. I think those started getting gobbled up by high bidders in the 90s. I know college radio is where They Might Be Giants got their start: their first three albums were played almost exclusively on American college FM radio stations (1986 - 1990).

      My guess is that, except for three or five large market FM stations, (New York, Chicago, LA, Boston, Philly) you'll only find consistently good music on the airwaves on college FM stations and a few former college FM stations today.

      Fuck hits.


    6. Yeah, when they find a way to regulate college radio and take it off the air, might as well throw my radio away.

      Ordinary commercial radio is nearly unlistenable, and I've grown more sensitive to the endless ads. Even the best stations from 50 years ago, I don't think I could stand today.

      Here in lovely Madison, there are three stations worth listening to — the college station, yessir, and WORT (the community non-commercial station), and if I'm desperate there's a local NPR station.

      There's also a left-wing talk station, something *extremely* rare in present-day America, and they're good, but I can't abide the commercials, and listen only via ad-free podcasts.

  2. Thanks for the sing-along. The Moody Blues with trite lyrics masquerading as profound ideas, backed by a faux-symphony orchestra, with nary a minor chord in hearing range, writing lyrics for teenage girls. So could someone explain why the hell I've enjoyed their music for nearly 55 years? I don't listen to it a lot, but when I do I virtually always enjoy it. I begin to suspect that music is more than the sum of its parts.


    1. That's an ice cold review, man. Ha! Probably fair.

      All of rock'n'roll was Hungarian goulash to me in my teens. Tunes on the radio, but rarely giving any thought to which band was performing. Still I can't say who's singing, even on a hundred songs memorized. Is that Sly & the Family Stone, or is it the Archies? There's no earthly way to know, short of buying the 45, but I rarely bought the 45.

      The Moody Blues, I knew. Pink Floyd, I knew.

    2. Jesus, Doug, did you read the whole review? I've been a fan since Christ was a cowboy. I just don't know why.


    3. Every word gets read. It's the least I can do, and that's always what I do.


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