2006 Notebook: Weak II
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9 January 2006
No. 3,804 (cartoon)
You’re a liar.

You’re an impostor.

We have so much in common.

10 January 2006
Lara’s Ocicat
Lara showed me her new kitten, a purebred Ocicat.

“That certainly is a cute little wussy,” I opined.

“At three-thousand dollars a kilo she should be,” Lara replied.

I decided not to point out that, instead of patronizing a breeder, she could have had one of the zillions of kittens that are killed every year for want of someone to adopt them. Since I missed the opportunity to make that point, I decided to simply share her bemusement with the endearing little kitten that sliced the back of my hand open with her first swipe.

11 January 2006
Dr. Dr. Acid’s Birthday
Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Albert Hofmann, the father of lysergic acid diethylamide, is celebrating his hundredth birthday today. (I have no idea how Swiss titles work, but his suitably impressive title really does begin with “Dr. Dr.”) Not only did Hofmann discover LSD, he also isolated psilocybin and psilocin from Psilocybe mexicana (more commonly known by its colloquial name, Mexican magic mushroom).

Hofmann referred to LSD as both a “wonder drug” and his “problem child.” He should know; he was the first person to use the exceptional drug.

U.S. government bureaucrats, who had a vested interest in keeping the doors of perception closed, outlawed LSD in 1966. Prohibition had the predictable effect: lysergic acid diethylamide remains desirable both because of its remarkable effects as well as because it’s illegal.

I have no idea whether or not LSD is as safe as it is efficacious, but the hundredth birthday of a frequent user like Hofmann—coupled with enthusiastic reports from wildly creative users—suggests that ...

Well, I’m sure it suggests something, but I can’t seem to think clearly at the moment for reasons I still can’t imagine.

12 January 2006
Reading Menus in Hebrew
After Sharon and I had gone on a long walk, she asked me where we should eat.

“Perhaps a taqueria,” I suggested predictably, “or any place that’s cheap and cheerful.”

“I read menus in Hebrew myself,” Sharon replied.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” I asked.

“It means I read from right to left, starting with the prices, then seeing what I’ll get.”

“Me too,” I agreed, although I never called it that description.

And of course, I can’t call it that without being accused of being anti-Semitic. Since Sharon’s Jewish (albeit secular), she can and does read menus in Hebrew with impunity.

13 January 2006
Colon Oil?!
Penelope and I went to a Long Now debate tonight that wasn’t much of a debate at all. Both of the speakers were erudite, genteel, and presented well-reasoned arguments with not a hint of sophistry. No insults, no chicanery, no hostility, no fun at all.

Well, almost no fun.

Peter Schwartz saved the evening by talking about Americans’ dependence on colon oil. As soon as he said that, Penelope and I looked at each other in amazement.

Colon oil?!

After that, we started paying more attention, and soon realized that Schwartz was talking about coal and oil.


We continued to giggle and smirk every time we heard Schwartz say “colon oil,” even though he never really did. Penelope and I left the so-called debate not knowing any more about Americans’ dependence on colon oil than when we arrived.

14 January 2006
Save the Nothing
I was telling Buzz about a remarkable conversation I had with the guitar player from a well-known, decades-old UK punk band. The musician declared, at great length, that the monarchy was doubtlessly the best form of government.

“I could never figure out why punks like royalty,” Buzz said.

“But punks generally hate royalty,” I argued. “The most obvious example is the Sex Pistols.”

“That’s not true,” Buzz replied, “the Sex Pistols loved the royal family.”

“What about the line in, ‘God Save the Queen,’ about her not being a human being?” I asked.

“That’s a perfect example,” Buzz agreed. “They couldn’t have a song called, ‘God Save the Nothing,’ could they?”

I told Buzz that was perhaps the most stupid thing he’d ever said, and we proceeded to enjoy a long and increasingly inane argument.

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©2006 David Glenn Rinehart