These are not normal times.

This house has eight bedrooms, seven currently occupied. Four people live upstairs, three downstairs, and we all share one laundry room with one coin-op washer and dryer. 



& links

Feb. 28, 2023
This morning comes a quiet knock at the front door, which I considered ignoring, but a package is past due so I poked my head out. It was one of the people who live downstairs. They have their own kitchen and bathroom, so I don't even know his name.

"Are you doing laundry?" the nameless man asked me. 

"Maybe later, but not now."

"Is someone up here doing laundry?"

I shrugged. How would I know? They don't clear it with me in advance, and I'm not gonna knock on doors like this guy did.

"Someone's clothes are in the washer," he said, "and I need to do a load."

I shrugged again. It happens. "My rule is, give it half an hour, and if nobody moves the clothes along, pile 'em on the table."

"I ain't got half an hour. I gotta be to work soon."

"Then pile," I said, and closed the door. 

"You don't have to be an ass about it," came the shout through the door. Well, no, I don't have to be, but it makes the day so much better.

On NPR yesterday, there was an 'expert analysis' delving into the current court case that's seeking to block President Biden's not insignificant but also kinda stingy forgiveness of some portion of some people's student loan debt.

The radio segment discussed the specific points raised in the red states' complaint, and who legally has grounds to sue, and pertinent precedent, and blah blah blah. Under ordinary circumstances, it would've been good coverage.

The situation isn't ordinary, though. Not at all. The specific points raised in court are irrelevant. Who legally has grounds to sue is irrelevant. Any legal precedent is irrelevant.

The Supreme Court won't decide this case on its legal merits. The Court is at the forefront of the slow-motion conservative coup. They're only weighing whether this case, any case, is important to the right-wing movement.

If it is, then the right-tilted argument win the case. If it's not important to the right-wing, then perhaps justice will prevail.

NPR is not run by nincompoops — they know that these are not normal times, and that this is not a valid court. Not acknowledging what they know shows again that NPR is part of the charade.

For months, my car simply sat at the side of the road, across the street from my house. A few weeks ago I spent some money having it fixed, and now it rattles but runs. When I'm running errands in a rush, sometimes I drive.

A few days ago, having a hamburger jones, I asked myself, should I drive to the diner, or take the bus? 

It's a ten-minute drive, so I could eat a leisurely lunch and be back in less than an hour. Via transit, it's a two-bus combo that takes about half an hour each way, so all told it would take more like an hour and a half. 

No denying that the bus is lots slower, but something interesting might happen on the bus, and there'll be time enough to think some thoughts.

There's nothing interesting inside the car, and it's not smart to let your mind wander too far while you're driving.

I really notice the difference at traffic lights. Even when in no hurry, crouching behind the wheel I'm impatient, wondering how much longer until I get the green. Jeez, come on!  

On a bus, I'm not even aware that there is a traffic light, or traffic for that matter.

Of course, I took the bus.

Plenty of packages have been coming for me lately, mostly new clothes for the new job. Sometimes my flatmate Robert knocks on or hollers through my door to bring me the latest delivery. I appreciate it, and like the guy.

Today he said, "Doug, you have a package," so I opened the door, took the package, ripped it open, and it was a something pink and silk. Might've been a shirt, a blouse, a kimono, I dunno, but I hadn't ordered it.

Took a look at the package like I should've before opening it, and it was addressed to one of the downstairs flatmates.

From that, sprang a several minute conversation with Robert, starting with his apology, but then venturing on to the morality of what to do next. Should we deliver the pink whatever to our flatmate downstairs?

My decision was, nope. Explaining what had happened would take too long, be a bit embarrassing, and could potentially get me slugged. Things do get battered around in shipping, and I've received packages that were basically already open, so we simply taped it shut and left it on the shelf where everyone grabs their mail.

But whatever's in the package was extremely pink and shiny, and addressed to a gruff, middle-aged man I never would've pictured in that color.

Well, now it's only a few hours until bedtime, as my last day of freedom draws to its close. I'm hoping for elusive sleep tonight, until the alarm goes off at 4AM and I shower and brush my teeth, dress, and trudge to the bus stop. Tomorrow I'll be a working man, and it saddens me tremendously. 

News you need,
whether you know it or not

Chevron's jet fuel made from plastic very likely to cause cancer, EPA documents say 

East Palestine train derailment killed more than 43,000 fish and animals, officials say 

Scientists grapple with a possible new consequence of climate change: "Zombie" viruses 

Study: Back-to-back hurricanes likely to come more often 

Climate change is causing droughts everywhere 

How climate change is killing the Bulgarian pink tomato 

Knoxville Police release footage of wheelchair-bound stroke victim dying in their custody after they abuse and berate her 

Whole bunch of bad cops quit when corrupt police chief is arrested 

One man's fight to hold an LAPD officer accountable for shooting him in the face at a protest 

Oak Lawn police officer charged in filmed beating of teen: report 

Atlanta Republicans want separate city and police force for wealthy 

Tennessee Governor will remove lipstick and shed skirt to sign anti-drag legislation 

Election deniers who lost secretary of state races now run several state Republican operations 

The far right wants you to think Ukraine's war is staged: "It is clearly a psyop." 

Dilbert comic distributor cuts ties with creator 

Rush Limbaugh's gravesite has become a gender-neutral bathroom 

Mystery links
There's no knowing where you're going






My browser history
without the porn

Legacy media tilts two ways: center-right and far-right 

Excerpt: This is the mainstream American press in a nutshell. Competing sets of billionaires use the power afforded to them by their wealth to advance their profit-driven and political agendas that may or may not be good for the country or society. Executives at these companies tamp down on internal dissent and ignore outside criticism. Truth is not a priority.

To the NY Times's Peter Baker, acknowledging trans people's existence is "activism," openly advocating for perpetual U.S. occupation of Afghanistan isn't 

I was offered a job with the FBI 

The most-wanted black woman in America before Angela Davis 

Public relations spending by police 

Love letter to the encyclopedia 

Watergate prosecutor can't figure out why Trump wasn't prosecuted the minute he left office 

The surprisingly scientific roots of monkey bars 

Wind phone 

♫♬  It don't mean a thing  ♫
if it don't have that swing

All My Happiness is Gone — Purple Mountains

Destiny Rules — Fleetwood Mac

Howl — Allen Ginsberg

News Theme — Broadcast News

War — Edwin Starr

Eventually, everyone
leaves the building

Ricou Browning 

François Hadji-Lazaro 

Burny Mattinson 

Sal Piro 

Tom Whitlock


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 ye olde AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, CaptCreate's Log, Looking for My Perfect Sandwich, Miss Miriam's Mirror, Nebulously Burnished, RanPrieur.com, Voenix Rising, and anywhere else I've stolen links, illustrations, or inspiration.
Special thanks to Linden Arden, Becky Jo, Wynn Bruce, John the Basket, Mister Free Turtle, Dave S, Name Withheld, 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. That Purple Mountains stuff is dark. Bought the CD but for some reason David Berman (RIP) has never clicked with me. -- Arden

    1. It's a recent addition — someone here recommended it, I think. Dark, yeah, but it's a wise woman once said, "Sad is happy for deep people." :)


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