5-6-2004 The Internet Madman is back

How many times can a flip-flop flip before a flip-flop becomes a flop?--Steve Schmidt, Dubya’s spokesman

I’m backkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk!

Sucks, heyna? Just when I thought I had seen it all as far as diabolical schemes to kick this troubled poetaster off of the internet go, some porky bastard sitting in a stifling cubicle somewhere, suffering from a horrible case of penile podagra went and scrambled the black helicopters once again. If you or I screw up, we pay the price. If somebody at some lofty corporate headquarters screws up, we pay the price. Us little people are always left to just grin and bare it whatever it may be. In the grand scheme of things, t’ain’t no big freakin’ thang. Whatever. Punch me, kick me, stab me-just don’t touch my friggin’ CDs.

During my rather lengthy hiatus from this seamy electronic underworld where grotesque looking 52 year-old men regularly stalk 12 year-old girls for all of approximately thirty-nine seconds of illegal carnal pleasure (?), I delved into uniformitarianism and quickly mastered quantum chromodynamics. Well, actually, I devoured two recently released politico type books, took possession of yet another 1,000 mint condition vinyl albums (Billy Vaughn, anyone?), helped Larry prune and mow yet another overgrown median strip on Penn Avenue and mostly smoked an awful lot of dried oregano. Oregano. Generic cigarettes. What’s the funkin’ difference anyway? Thank goodness for those sin taxes though. Just imagine how much more docile and clueless our already disaffected kids would be if the dreaded and suddenly outcast smokers weren’t padding the grossly obese wallets of our teacher‘s unions.

Am I meandering just a tad? Is there a bit of verbalism going on here? Circumlocution, if you will? TOUGH! Got a problem with that? Yeah?! I’ll kick you so friggin’ hard, you’ll suffer a painfully slow ecchymotic death! Okay, maybe not. It’s been a while, kiddies. My fingers are out of shape as well as my thoroughly demented mind. Hang in there. I promise to make a cogent point here. Maybe. Ya’ never know.

A few days back, as per usual, WILK’s Sue Henry had my mostly damaged brain matter doing some serious plyometrics. She’s sneaky. She tends to almost apologize to her listeners by pointing out that she may be completely wrong on an issue, or that maybe she’s not as up to speed as she needs to be and then... BLAMMO! She springs on us much like some exotic 300-pound cat would on a diseased-looking horse type thingy from some other totally screwed up continent. Here she goes. MEOW! (On lab-enhanced steroids)

What if they held free elections in Iraq and Saddam won?

Are you thinking what I was thinking at the time? BANG!!!

Goll dern it, Babs! Just when we thought it was safe to start seeing y’all as sex objects to be fought over again, you had to go droppin’ major league pearls of wisdom of us. FRIG!

So, what if Saddam won? Would we just pack up our Slim Jims and Frisbees, put the tyrant back on his now remodeled throne and go home? Or would we do what the pansies in the Democratic party demand and look to the anti-U.S. United Nations for guidance and permission to act? Or would we surrender to the wishes of the French, Germans and Russians and turn Iraq into a coparcenary of sorts? Or would we stay the painful course?

I say painful course, because I happened upon Sherwood Baker being laid to rest in West Wyoming on Tuesday afternoon. This was one of those rare occasions where if I could, I would have cried. Actually, while witnessing that sad, yet strangely inspiring scene, I honestly would have preferred to ball like a toddler for just a spell. It’s amazing to me that some 700 flag-draped caskets have come back from Iraq and when one, just one came back to our community, that single casket had more of an impact on many of us than the entirety of the 700 that preceded it. This wasn’t some local boy from Illinois or Nevada that paid the severely steep price. This was our local boy. The war finally hit home. I guess it was inevitable that it would come to pass, but it still hurts and it’s not something that anyone can prepare themselves for. How any of us might react is anyone’s guess, but I would prefer it if we could stop fighting amongst ourselves and refocus our energies on the monumental tasks at hand and on the sandal-clad nuts stuck in the seventh century that promise to strike us again and soon.

Yet another local boy from yet another rust-belt podunk has fallen. On September 10, 2001, not one of us would have thought any of this even remotely possible.

What if they held free elections in Iraq and Saddam won?

I couldn’t believe my freakin’ bug eyes when I read that the Leader’s Mark Guydosh wrote that Mayor Tom Leighton was “lucky” that Governor Rendell is willing to invest in Pennsylvania’s many struggling smaller cities. Lucky? Sure, the Gov came to town slingin’ some pretty sizeable checks around the Ramada, but luck had nothing, I reiterate, nothing to do with our recent, but long overdue good fortune. And to even suggest that Wilkes-Barre somehow got “lucky” as of late makes me wonder whether the folks at the Times Leader are interested in telling us the whole ( Not hole!) story, or if they simply recalibrate the targeting computer every time a new mayor takes office.

Luck? Did Tom Leighton use tax dollars to procure an oversized tie-dyed rabbit’s foot, or did he present a balanced budget for the first time in recent memory? Did he restructure our massive debts? Did he manage, where no mayor before him has, to somehow convince a city union to make a few concessions to the city’s overall financial health? Or did he convince the good folks at AMBAC that Wilkes-Barre was no longer on the precipice of financial ruin? Or did he increase needed tax revenues as well as every other possible income source to bolster our recently depleted city coffers? Or did he travel to Harrisburg and meet with the governor’s underlings for months and months on end in an effort to convince those folks that not only was Wilkes-Barre in capable hands for a change, but that it also had viable projects on the drawing board that deserved a serious look from the state honchos pulling the purse strings now that the adults have assumed control?

Luck? Lucky? Guydosh knows better than that and it totally pisses me off that he would even suggest to his readers that the governor of this state would ride into town throwing massive checks at whomever the current mayor happened to be.

Call Leighton what you will, and bitch about whatever works on the factually-challenged pages of SAYSO, but dig this-those checks came our way because of Tom Leighton’s tireless efforts and that’s a fact. To suggest otherwise suggests that someone either doesn’t know all of the facts, or they don’t want to share them with you for whatever reason.

Lucky? Alright!!! Here’s the real dope. Rendell was alarmed when he was first advised of the state of Wilkes-Barre’s finances and such, but he was itching for an invite to the 15th Annual Thompson Street Block Party. As it turns out, his personal fitness guru, Penelope “Deep Rote” Pussnboots, reads this site and made the governor aware of the fact that Tom Leighton had attended last year’s ultra-successful 14th rendition of the block party. According to an unnamed city hall source (Codename: Greg), the Gov then pressured the mayor for an invite and it ended up costing him $7 million-plus. That’s what I’m told, but I have no way to confirm any of this. Be it as it may, Rendell can party with us, but he has to pay up just like everyone else and we’re not going to be playing any of that pedestrian Hip-Hop sonic idiocy so popular in his overly grungy hometown.

I was put on notice today that the first planning meeting for the 15th Annual Thompson Street Block Party is soon to happen. Hoo-hoo! Turn on the kerosene-powered bubble machine and tell my legions of middle-aged, blue-haired groupies to bring their DEVO helmets this year. Clodpole!!!

Sorry about that. Wouldn’t want to upset the idiolectal apple cart. Blockhead!!!

As if you hadn’t already guessed, Kevin Lynn’s usual bilge this morning had me ready to road rage on the first little old lady I encountered. Gee whiz! We “tortured” some Iraqi prisoners by forcing them to strip nekkid. If that’s torture, I’d bet every single soldier we’ve got on the ground in country is hoping to sign up for the very same program in the event that they are captured by any of our ultra-friendly Islamogoofs. You will spill the beans, or pay the price. Off go the fruit-of-the-looms. Now...pose like a she-male and bark. Torture? Or a bisexual swingers club in Tannersville?

Here’s what Mr. Acerbic himself, Kevin Lynn, had to say and it was repeated again and again by both Nancy Kman and Sue Henry: “It’s against their culture.”

Apparently, Arab men are embarrassed beyond belief to be naked in front of another man. It’s against their culture that hasn‘t progressed much at all since the 7th century. To force an Arab man to strip in the presence of other men is the ultimate indignity. It’s just too much to bare. Pun intended. Boo-freaking-hoo, Ognod!

They sound like a bunch of f**king freaks to me. There were a couple of dickheads like them in gym class every single school year. They’d get dressed without taking a shower, even though they were sweating like Kobe Bryant at one of his numerous legal hearings. Why? Because the other guys might catch a glimpse of their horribly undersized thingy or some such gibberish. Oh, the shame. The thing is, sooner or later, one of those linebacker types would grab a hold of them, rip off their gym uniform (My age is showing) and toss them directly into the showers. All part of growing up, heyna? Anywho, back to those pretend tough guys, the Arab sissy boys...

Being naked in front of others is “against their culture.” What the muck were our troops thinking? Couldn’t our guys simply break a finger or two so as to not offend the Muslims being detained. Gosh, we’re an offensive lot, aren’t we? It’s against their culture. Wanna know what? Based on what their backwards culture has shown me to date, I really don’t give a flying f**k about what offends their culture, their sensibilities or their “peaceful” religion for that matter.

What Kevin, the phony Republican who never met a Republican he didn’t call a knuckle dragger failed to point out to his listeners this morning were some of the things that do not offend the Muslim/Arab culture. Let’s cover a few.

It is not against their culture to decapitate their teen-aged daughters after having been caught holding hands with a boy in public.

It is not against their culture to kidnap, mutilate, behead, or burn to death anyone deemed to be an Infidel.

It is not against their culture to drag the mutilated bodies of civilians they’ve killed from the bumpers of their cars.

It is not against their culture to publicly display the charred and mangled bodies of civilian contractors they’ve murdered.

It is not against their culture to detonate explosive devices in crowded malls, pizzarias, or on packed busses.

It is not against their culture to frolic and cheer in the streets when skyscrapers filled with untold numbers of innocent people collapse.

It is not against their culture to promise death to every member of a nearby country.

Their culture? Save your breathe, Kev. Quite frankly, I don’t see much of a culture after all the needless death and destruction is removed from the equation. In my estimation, they should be embarrassed even with their clothes on after close examination of just how little the entire Middle East has contributed to all of mankind throughout history. If they wish to continue living in the stone ages, they might as well be naked.

Sure, it was disappointing to learn that some of our soldiers, and possibly some of our lower level commanders could be so completely stupid, but is it really all that shocking when one considers that what happened happened in the middle of a war? Is it? Are we really this naive?

And there’s Kev calling for Rumsfeld’s head and secretly hoping that Bush will be forced to step down in disgrace somehow and the fact of the matter is we don’t even know the full story yet. All that matters is that we bash Bush from 6-9 am every morning. Why wait for the facts? Why not go off half-cocked which seems to be his usual modus operandi whenever it seems even remotely possible to damage our president’s polling numbers. Show prep? We dun need no stinking show prep? All we need is yet another baseless accusation or two and we can go to hacking. Right, Kev?

You don’t suppose that he somehow identifies with those Arab men too frightened to take a shower when it‘s needed, do you?

What happened is stupid beyond all possible belief and Donald Rumsfeld has some serious, serious explaining to do. But until we get to the bottom of this, is it too much to ask for Kev and Nancy to contain their obvious bias while sticking to their laughable bullspit about not being sure who they intend to vote for come November? Bias is one thing. Obfuscation is a whole other thing.

Then we’ve got the ultimate local anti-Bush warrior, the Voice’s Mike McGlynn making a total arse of himself in yesterday’s usual anti-Bush tirade concerning Bush‘s recent habit of mocking John Kerry‘s campaign flip-flop-a-rama. This is a freakin’ hoot.

This looks like a very risky strategery for the president to employ, as it has enormous potential to backfire and, even if it doesn’t, it could undermine the dignitude of the presidency-especially in the minds of thoughtful voters who currently are undecided.

Undermine the dignitude of the presidency? He can’t be f**king serious, can he? Please tell me that he doesn’t honestly believe that we’re this freaking stupid here in Culm County? Undermine the dignitude of the presidency? That’d be a pretty tall order after having oral sex and cigars inserted into vaginas become part of the presidential protocol under Ozark Billy’s less than dignified reign.

Is it any wonder that the “learned” types such as Kev and Mike receive less and less attention from the average folks that are slowly but surely learning to do their own research thanks to these amazing ‘puter gizmos? Dignitude? Hit the shower, Mike. We promise not to peek.

There’s a whole lotta stem cells losing their plasticity in these parts as of late.

I just talked to my neighbor as the Copper Dudes were invading Shaqia’s vampire lair and it seems the postal workers are going to adopt the grassy median on Penn Avenue that lies directly behind the post office. That’s perfectly fine with me. Us Ehrlich folks and Larry can now concentrate on making the median strip behind St. Nick’s amazing looking now that the work load has been lightened by 50%. This volunteerism business may seem like an unneeded hassle to most, but I find it very satisfying to know that my putrid efforts help to make some small difference.

The Hose Dudes made some major concessions and according to the mayor’s numbers, the new seven year contract recently agreed upon will save the city $3.1 million over the life of the contract. This is good news for us peons and good news for the folks managing the city’s shaky finances. It’s less than good news for the fire fighters and their families, but it’s not by any stretch of the imagination a stifling blow to their overall financial well-being. I know that not all of the rank-and-file guys are happy with this new contract, but austerity is something that needs to come about when red ink becomes an undeniable trend. Some saw it as their selfless contribution to a city in dire straights while others saw it as a screwing of sorts. That’s completely understandable. The unthinkable has happened. A city union gave in to some degree and the other unions took immediate notice.

I applaud the Hose Dudes for doing what they could to help advance this city’s cause.

The next pressing issue is the per shift staffing requirements set forth by an arbitration award the fire fighters won during their continuous struggles with our previous mayor. The way I understand it, the city has to figure out a way to assign three fire fighters to each piece of apparatus on every shift. Currently, two men man each vehicle and 16 are on-duty at any given time. If that were to happen, we’d be looking at 20 guys working each shift and the city claims it just can’t afford that. The possible solutions to staff each vehicle with three men while not adding any additional labor costs?

1.) Close a firehouse, or

2.) Put an engine out of service indefinately

I really do understand the need to contain costs, but the thought of putting another engine out of service is simply not a viable option if public safety enters into the mix at all.

We already lost Engine 5, which was replaced by the 27 year-old Engine 1 from our headquarters. The Tiller, our historic ladder truck, was taken out of service leaving our 29 year-old Truck 6 as our only ladder truck. That leaves 3 engines, 1 mini-pumper, Rescue 7 and Truck 6 to respond to each and every call that comes into the 911 facility. A serious car accident ties up at least two of these vehicles as well as a medic unit or two and F-6. If we put another engine out of service and a serious structure fire erupts, that would leave the city with nothing to speak of held in reserve. If one robust fire suddenly presents itself, public safety in Wilkes-Barre will be severely compromised.

I don’t know where the answer lies and I’m in no way chastising anyone at City Hall, but the way I hear it from my Scanner Land perch, the very last thing we need in this city is less available fire engines.

Our new mayor has yet another serious dilemma on his hands. What else is new?

It’s been fun. I’ve been out of the loop for quite a spell, but I haven’t been sleeping the entire time, or downloading kiddie porn for that matter. If there’s something important that I neglected to cover, drop me an electronic line.

The internet madman is back.



The present day composer refuses to die.--Edgar Varese