"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing."


Glenn Reynolds:

Barack Obama:
"Impossible to transcend."

Albert A. Gore, Jr.:
"An incontinent brute."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:
"God damn the Gentleman Farmer."

Friends of GF's Sons:
"Is that really your dad?"

Kickball Girl:
"Keeping 'em alive until 7:45."

Hired Hand:
"I think . . . we forgot the pheasant."

I'm an
Alcoholic Yeti
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

34 Glorious American Years

"In 1977, the year I was born and the year my father, his mother, his aunt and many other Jews left the Soviet Union (my mother and I left in 1978), the Soviet propaganda machine began circulating a rumor. It went, roughly: life in America is so terrible that the old people eat cat food.

"This was . . . perplexing.

"People didn’t quite get it: 'they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!'"

Read the whole thing.

Friday, July 20, 2012

July 20, 1969

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

"Things that make me laugh for 1,000, Alex!"

"All you have to do is take 23 nude pictures of yourself with your smartphone."

Completely safe for work. No, really! You're so sweet, why would I lie to you?  Have I ever lied to you before, baby?

Sigh . . . .

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Four Preludes on Playthings of the Wind

by Carl Sandburg

The past is a bucket of ashes.

The woman named Tomorrow
sits with a hairpin in her teeth
and takes her time
and does her hair the way she wants it
and fastens at last the last braid and coil
and puts the hairpin where it belongs
and turns and drawls: Well, what of it?
My grandmother, Yesterday, is gone.
What of it? Let the dead be dead.

The doors were cedar
and the panels strips of gold
and the girls were golden girls
and the panels read and the girls chanted:
  We are the greatest city,
  the greatest nation:
  nothing like us ever was.
The doors are twisted on broken hinges.
Sheets of rain swish through on the wind
  where the golden girls ran and the panels read:
  We are the greatest city,
  the greatest nation,
  nothing like us ever was.

It has happened before.
Strong men put up a city and got
  a nation together,
And paid singers to sing and women
  to warble: We are the greatest city,
    the greatest nation,
    nothing like us ever was.
And while the singers sang
and the strong men listened
and paid the singers well
and felt good about it all,
  there were rats and lizards who listened
  … and the only listeners left now
  … are … the rats … and the lizards.
And there are black crows
crying, "Caw, caw,"
bringing mud and sticks
building a nest
over the words carved
on the doors where the panels were cedar
and the strips on the panels were gold
and the golden girls came singing:
  We are the greatest city,
  the greatest nation:
  nothing like us ever was.
The only singers now are crows crying, "Caw, caw,"
And the sheets of rain whine in the wind and doorways.
And the only listeners now are … the rats … and the lizards.

The feet of the rats
scribble on the door sills;
the hieroglyphs of the rat footprints
chatter the pedigrees of the rats
and babble of the blood
and gabble of the breed
of the grandfathers and the great-grandfathers
of the rats.
And the wind shifts
and the dust on a door sill shifts
and even the writing of the rat footprints
tells us nothing, nothing at all
about the greatest city, the greatest nation
where the strong men listened
and the women warbled: Nothing like us ever was.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Caturday Casting Call

From Life Magazine, many more at Retronaut.


Friday, July 13, 2012

"If you name your child Sketch, you should be arrested."

And it's downhill from there: "American Baby Names Are Somehow Getting Even Worse."

Your doctor eats broccoli; so should you. Always trust your doctor.

Dear 1964: Problem Solved

From the October, 1964 edition of Teen Confessions (via Sequential Crush):


Thursday, July 12, 2012

"If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole."

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Conservatives more happy than liberals

Don't listen to my cranky opinion, it's in the New York Times:
WHO is happier about life — liberals or conservatives? The answer might seem straightforward. After all, there is an entire academic literature in the social sciences dedicated to showing conservatives as naturally authoritarian, dogmatic, intolerant of ambiguity, fearful of threat and loss, low in self-esteem and uncomfortable with complex modes of thinking. And it was the candidate Barack Obama in 2008 who infamously labeled blue-collar voters “bitter,” as they “cling to guns or religion.” Obviously, liberals must be happier, right?

Wrong. Scholars on both the left and right have studied this question extensively, and have reached a consensus that it is conservatives who possess the happiness edge. Many data sets show this. For example, the Pew Research Center in 2006 reported that conservative Republicans were 68 percent more likely than liberal Democrats to say they were “very happy” about their lives. This pattern has persisted for decades. The question isn’t whether this is true, but why.
Professor Althouse hypothesises:
My first guess, without reading on in the article is that they mind their own business. They think taking care of their own work and family is enough, and liberals feel they must worry about how everyone else is doing.
This makes sense to us: if you're a liberal, your calling is to tell other people what to do, whether you do it or not. It's got to be frustrating when they just won't listen, particularly when you and everyone you talk to knows that there's just no doubt that you're right. The study also reports:
Marriage and happiness go together. If two people are demographically the same but one is married and the other is not, the married person will be 18 percentage points more likely to say he or she is very happy than the unmarried person.
We're a bit dubious respecting that conclusion, since the data also shows that married men are 35% more likely to report that they enjoy spending the afternoon browsing through yarn shops, and 45% more likely to understand why the toilet seat has to be down.

Fast reloading, no powder residue: KA-BAR

Saturday, July 07, 2012


Friday, July 06, 2012

Titanic. Deck Chairs.

"Episcopalians review a new rite for gay unions."

We're put in mind of the observation of Professor Henry Higgins in "My Fair Lady": "The French don't care what they do actually, as long as they pronounce it properly."

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Andy Griffith (June 1, 1926 -- July 3, 2012

Once upon a time, Andy Griffith portrayed wise affable Sheriff Andy Taylor of Mayberry, North Carolina.  Mayberry was an idealized version of small-town life in America where problems almost always had solutions involving kindness, patience, charity, wisdom and common sense.  Mayberry was no more an accurate portrayal of mid-20th century America than Keeping Up With The Kardashians is an accurate representation of 21st Century America.  But Mayberry, and Griffith's Sheriff Taylor, were aspirational:  this is what life was supposed to be like; this is the way people are supposed to behave.

It has been said that there's nothing you need to know about living a good life that you can't learn by watching Sheriff Taylor's life in Mayberry.  That may not literally be true, but it's close enough for us.

Monday, July 02, 2012

What life looks like to most people.