Friday, March 06, 2009
Thursday, March 05, 2009
Our pal Elf Hellion sent over the following piece of reefer madness…
"A man who stuffed his girlfriend's cat into a makeshift bong and smoked marijuana through it said Tuesday that he had done it on other occasions and that it calmed the cat down. Acea Schomaker of Lincoln said he never intended to hurt the 6-month-old cat, Shadow. Lancaster County sheriff's deputies responding to a domestic disturbance at the residence ticketed the 20-year-old Schomaker on suspicion of misdemeanor animal cruelty Sunday after catching him smoking marijuana from a boxlike contraption that had the cat stuffed inside its 12-inch by 6-inch base. Schomaker's girlfriend, Marissa Vieux, also was ticketed for animal cruelty because she didn't try to stop Schomaker." (Click for more and a video.)
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
As the madness of Republicans barks louder by the hour, our good-buddy HCB sends us the following comments…
“The attention Limbaugh is getting must be a better narcotic than a bottle of liquid Oxycontin, if his current rant is any indication. Listening to him on the radio at the moment, he's beseeching--demanding I suppose is a better word – Obama to debate him on his show (no flunkies, please, says Rush, no ex-Presidents, no current Vice-Presidents). Limbaugh is offering to fly Obama down, first class, feed him, and put him up in a five-star resort (I'm not making this up).
Do you suppose Limbaugh might be possessed by Idi Amin, might actually eat Obama if he gets within reach?
Limbaugh's ego is so inflated he appears to be on the verge of some kind of massive implosion, like a Lonesome Roads meltdown. I don't want to be on the same continent when this happens--a cross between the Hindenberg and the guy at the end of the Monty Python movie.”
The secret word is Dementia
And while we’re talking friends of Doc40, our good pal Skylaire Alfvegren is now the Los Angeles correspondent for UFO Examiner. She will post every few days. (Click here for Skylaire.)
And click here for a Cthulhu-orientated humor piece from The Onion.
Or click here for a very nice review of The Deviants compilation CD On Your Knees Earthlings.
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
”Most people think of the "mentally disordered" as a delusional lot, holding bizarre and irrational ideas about themselves and the world around them. Isn’t a mental disorder, after all, an impairment or a distortion in thought or perception? This is what we tend to think, and for most of modern psychology's history, the experts have agreed; realistic perceptions have been considered essential to good mental health. More recently, however, research has arisen that challenges this common-sense notion. In 1988, psychologists Shelly Taylor and Jonathon Brown published an article making the somewhat disturbing claim that positive self-deception is a normal and beneficial part of most people’s everyday outlook. They suggested that average people hold cognitivebiases in three key areas: a) viewing themselves in unrealistically positive terms; b) believing they have more control over their environment than they actually do; and c) holding views about the future that are more positive than the evidence can justify. Thetypical person, it seems, depends on these happy delusions for the self-esteem needed to function through a normal day. It’s when the fantasies start to unravel that problems arise.
Studies into clinical depression have yielded findings leading to the development of an intriguing, but still controversial, concept known as depressive realism. This theory puts forward the notion that depressed individuals actually have more realistic perceptions of their own image, importance, and abilities than the average person. While it’s still generally accepted that depressed people can be negatively biased in their interpretation of events and information, depressive realism suggests that they are often merely responding rationally to realities that the average person cheerfully denies.Lear's Fool speaks wisdom disguised as madness. Those with paranoid disorders can sometimes possess a certain unusual insight as well. It has often been asserted that within every delusional system, there exists a core of truth—and in their pursuit of imagined conspiracies against them, these individuals often show an exceptionally keen eye for the real thing. People who interact with them may be taken aback as they find themselves accused of harboring some negative opinion of the person which, secretly, they actually do hold. Complicating the issue, of course, is the fact that if the supposed aversion didn’t exist before, it likely does after such an unpleasant encounter.As one might imagine, these issues present some problems when it comes to treatment. How does one convince a depressed person that “everything is all right” when her life really does suck? How does one convince an obsessive-compulsive patient to stop religiously washing his hands when the truth of what gets left behind after “normal”washing should be enough to make any sane person cringe? These problems put therapists in the curious position of teaching patients to develop irrational patterns of thinking—patterns that help them view the world as a rosier place than it really is. Counterintuitive as it sounds, it's justified because what defines a mental disorder isnot unreasonable or illogical thought, but abnormal behaviour that causes significant distress and impairs normal functioning in society. Treatment is about restoring a person to that level of normal functioning and satisfaction, even if it means building cognitionsthat aren’t precisely “rational” or “realistic.” It’s a disconcerting concept. It’s certainly easier to think of the mentally disordered as lunatics running about with bizarre, inexplicable beliefs than to imagine them coping with a piece of reality that a "normal" person can’t handle. The notion that we routinely hide from the truth about ourselves and our world is not an appealing one, though it may help to explain the human tendency toostracize the abnormal. Perhaps the reason we are so eager to reject any departure from this fiction we call "normality" is because we have grown dependent on our comfortable delusions; without them, there is nothing to insulate us from the harsh cold of reality.”
The secret word is Acuity
Nick – “I hear Rush Limbaugh has effectively annexed the Republican Party.”
Nora – “Fat bastard drug addict.”
Monday, March 02, 2009
In which Marilyn, expansive and gorgeous, excitedly leads the celebrations. Santa Clara has fallen, the armored train is derailed, the British Homosexual in the burnoose and white robes takes no prisoners, Zombie Bankers have packed their gold and uranium and taken it on the lam. The Mugwumps scatter in confusion. Apollonians put down their weapons and surrender in their thousands. Drinks are on the house and victorious Dionysians are as drunk as skunks in twenty dimensions. The files of the Secret Police are burning. The Men In Hats have gone with the wind. Princess Aura has been arrested and will be tried by The People’s Courts. Birds sing. Cats dance. Dogs have their day. But Marilyn is well aware that, in the reality streams of the multiverse, it only takes one inadvertently stomped butterfly to change everything.
(I must stop lifting images from Tom Sutpen.)
(THE ADVENTURES OF MARILYN NOW HAS IT’S OWN PAGE SO THE WHOLE THING CAN BE READ WITHOUT SCROLLING. CLICK HERE)
Sunday, March 01, 2009
A controversy is growing around the publication of the novel The Owl in Daylight by Tessa Dick, last wife of Philip K. Dick, that claims to be a reworking of the book the revered author was working on at the time of his death in 1982. In an interview in Self-Publishing Review, Tessa Dick states her case.
“I started writing The Owl in Daylight when some of Phil’s loyal readers begged me to write it. I had (somewhat foolishly) posted a comment on a blog about the Owl that I knew the story and could write it. This was followed by pleas that I do so at once. I attempted to express the spirit of Phil’s proposed novel, without using his plot or the one character that he had created. Phil had written very little about this novel. In fact, all that has been found is a letter that he wrote to his editor and his agent (same letter, two copies). It was very sketchy and did not even name any characters. It did mention Dante’s Inferno and the Faust legend. I did not use Phil’s ideas as he expressed them in that letter to his editor and his agent. He was going to have a great scientist design and build a computer system and then get trapped in its virtual reality. The computer would be so advanced that it developed human-like intelligence and rebelled against its frivolous purpose of managing a theme park.
In the conversations that we had shortly before Phil’s death, I couldn’t convince him that a computer system would have to be designed and built by a team of experts in different fields, such as one expert in graphics, another in animation, one for hardware, one for software and so forth. I have read that Doris Sauter published an alternate plot involving a musician and aliens, but I did not read her book and did not use her ideas. The Owl in Daylight is my concept of what Phil’s novel should be. I relied heavily on Mozart’s opera The Magic Flute. The plot is loosely based on Phil’s life, which will become more apparent in the sequel, The Owl in Twilight. Sometimes I do feel that Phil is communicating with me from beyond the grave, but that concept is too spooky for me to accept completely. It’s probably just that I knew him so well that I can think the way he did."
Not everyone is exactly happy about all this. The opposing case is succinctly stated by our pal Dr. Adder (although is makes clear his doctorate is primarily in bullshit.)
“She's not just using the title, but she is publicly representing the book as being based on Phil's story; arguably, if nothing else, the estate might be able to claim that she's intentionally creating confusion in the market and undermining the value of the "real" Owl in Daylight story outline that Phil set down in writing while he was alive. The ungenerous view would be that this may be a work of blatant corpse-fuckery, as when August Derleth wrote "posthumous collaborations" with HP Lovecraft, basing whole novels on some dashed-off sentence in HPL's notebooks. Her intentions may be much more noble, buuuut...It sounds like she's on the outs with the estate and I wonder if she's setting herself up for a big legal kick in the teeth if the estate deigns to take notice. Though it doesn't look like she's put his name on the book and has been cagier in the phrasing in the promo material on the publisher's site, calling it a "tribute" to Phil.”
If more unravels we’ll bring it to you.