Inquiries and investigations

I put some serious effort into tidying up my room over the past couple of days. You'd still say it's a mess, but boxes and clothes no longer block the way to the door, only smaller pieces of litter. And I've rearranged the milk crates, moved the recliner to a new position, etc.



& links

Jan. 12, 2023

My cat prefers things the way they were, and any time I move stuff around she freaks out. She has the loudest meow of any cat that's not a tiger, and there has definitely been more meowing than usual this week.

Someone knocked on my door yesterday, to talk about it. It was L, my stoner flatmate who's only rarely seen and almost never speaks to me or anyone. I masked up and opened up, and he said, "You have a cat in there, right?"

"Most certainly I have a cat." 

L has a cat, too, and I guess he's very much a cat person. He asked if my cat was OK, why it was yeowling so much, and we talked about my cat for a couple of minutes. He wanted to be sure I wasn't sacrificing the cat in Satanic rituals or something, and wondered why the cat never comes out of my room.

I explained that my beloved Izzy is a rescue cat, that it took a long time for me to become the only human she trusts. "She's right over there, behind the boxes. She's alive and well, but I can't show you that she's alive and well, because she won't come out while you're here."

So basically he was asking whether I'm a monster, and I explained that I am not a monster. He's probably still suspicious, which might be because of the marijuana — he reeks of it.

Facing this line of unexpected inquiry was bizarre, but I couldn't bring myself to being offended. It's reassuring, actually. If an animal is making as much noise as my cat was making, any decent human should give a damn, so I pronounce my stoner flatmate L a decent human.

I waited weeks, but nobody else was going to stick a fork down the shower drain and twirl up all the hairs so the water would flow again. I'd forked the hair out of the drain a few months ago, and now I've forked it up again.

We don't share plates and utensils in this otherwise shared house, so both times I've used one of Dean's forks.

Speaking of my flatmate Dean, he's in the kitchen right now, talking to Robert about cheese graters. How long could you talk about cheese graters? How long could you listen? 

They've been discussing cheese graters for almost 15 minutes, although "they" might be a misnomer. I haven't heard Robert's voice in the past ten minutes.

Unemployed for almost a year now, I've been looking for work, but very casually. The last application I filled out was several weeks ago, for the US Postal Service. It's supposed to be a sit-down job, pushing mail through a sorting machine, but the listing said I'd need the ability to lift 70 pounds. I laughed and clicked 'yes', but in reality I'd need to split it into two stacks of 35 pounds each.

I'd heard USPS can take months to even start the hiring process, but maybe they rushed my application due to my advanced age.

A week later they sent a bullshit "psychological profile" questionnaire, which I answered honestly. As punishment for that, I assumed I'd never hear from them again.

But this morning they sent a "provisional offer of employment," pending a background check which, they tell me, will be conducted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

The job isn't in Georgia and I've never been there, but who am I to question the wisdom of USPS before even being hired?

Of course, being a very boring man, there's nothing in my background for GBI to check. No arrests. No credit history. A traffic accident, minor. Pays the rent on time. Nothing to connect me to this website, certainly.

I do hope this part of the process goes slowly. End of the month will be my one-year anniversary without working, not counting my month driving buses to futility. 

And I'd like the full year, please. Lordy, I have loved it. There's no rush.

Why do olives only come in black and green? I want red, white, and blue olives, tie-dyed olives…

News you need,
whether you know it or not

"A world rapidly warming": The past eight years were the eight warmest on record for planet 

Katie Porter is running for US Senate in 2024 regardless of what Diane Feinstein does 

Porter is one of perhaps a dozen members of Congress who aren't despicable. Feinstein is not.

How police 'suicided' Erick Tavira 

Arizona mom's journey to get off child abuse registry after using medical marijuana is over 

The US far right helped stoke the attack on Brazil's Congress 

Mystery links
Like life itself, there's no
knowing where you're going




Clicks ahoy

Doxxed in 1791 

How history forgot Rosewood, a black town razed by a white mob 

Technically the event is classified as a glacial lake outburst flood. In 12 minutes, a landslide, tsunami, and flood devastated a valley in Canada. 

Living inside the earth: the Yaodong, cave buildings in China 

How have you made your life easier? 

The white man in the photo of the black power salute at the 1968 Olympics 

♫♬  Mix tape of my mind  ♫

Air — Hair  

Democracy — Leonard Cohen 

Mission Impossible (incidental music) — Lalo Schifrin 

Should I Stay or Should I Go? — The Clash 

Without You — Harry Nilsson 

Eventually, everyone
leaves the building

Russell Banks 

Jeff Beck 

Earl Boen 

Dorothy Iannone 

Adolfo Kaminsky 

Naomi Replansky 


Cranky Old Fart 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 Linden Arden, ye olde AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, Captain Hampockets, CaptCreate's Log, John the Basket, LiarTownUSA, Meme City, National Zero, Ran Prieur, Voenix Rising, and anyone else whose work I've stolen without saying thanks.
Special thanks to Becky Jo, Name Withheld, Dave S, Wynn Bruce, and always extra special thanks to my lovely late Stephanie, who gave me 21 years and proved that the world isn't always shitty.


  1. Replies
    1. Yeah, I've been reading about the guy and the incident. Word is she's obnoxious and stinks and she's been loitering at the door of his business for at least days, and the cops and authorities wouldn't do anything, so I understand the fucker's frustration.

      He's still a fucker, though. I wouldn't hose down a human like that, and he looks so casual doing it, I'm sure he's done it before. He's a fuckwad of colossal proportions.

      I'll bet she would've walked away with a promise to stay away, for ten bucks he could clearly afford.

      Such incidents are symptoms, though. Even the lady on the sidewalk is a symptom. The problem is that the homeless have no homes, which is a very easy problem to solve, but expensive, so the Republicans will never allow a solution, and such moments and such misery are our present and future.

  2. "Democracy" is a really good song. Thanks for the dance.


    1. I'm sentimental, if you know what I mean
      I love the country but I can't stand the scene
      And I'm neither left or right
      I'm just staying home tonight
      Getting lost in that hopeless little screen
      But I'm stubborn as those garbage bags
      That time cannot decay
      I'm junk but I'm still holding up this little wild bouquet
      Democracy is coming to the USA
      To the USA

      It's a beautiful poem, and I listen whenever I need a jolt of optimism. It's a fairy tale, though. He was inspired to write it by the fall of the Wall in 1989, but I don't think we have more democracy in the USA now than we did then. It looks like less to me.


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