Another One Bites the Dust

The tricky  thing about politics is that there are so many different issues going on, and everybody’s perspective is completely different, and even people  who agree with you on most of the fundamental stuff will disagree with you on  some things, because we are all  different people and that  is  both the beauty and the curse  of  humanity.

I just unfriended somebody.  It was the phrase ‘the Jew George Soros’ that did it.  I commented, saying ‘I’m Jewish’ which, in fact, I am (half), although I don’t talk about it much because it really is irrelevant, most of the time.  I’m not observant, I’m a total atheist (because if God exists, like  as a real thing, then what is beyond God, and what is beyond that, and what is beyond that?), and I’m  not  at all supportive of Israel, although I  was in my youth and spent a great deal of  time there.

My kids are not Jewish, because my wife is not Jewish, and we all know how that works (well, most Jewish people know.  It’s a matrilinear culture.  Father’s bloodline doesn’t count.)  This does not bother me.  Judaism has crappy food and boring holidays (except for Purim.  Purim is a blast.)  Hysterical comedians, but you  don’t actually have to be Jewish to get the jokes.  I don’t feel my kids are missing out on anything important.

I also am not a big fan of George  Soros.  Yeah, he’s made a big show of donating money to ‘liberal’ causes, as if that excuses his deliberate wrecking of economies.  I put him sort of in  the same category as Andrew Carnegie.  Yes, the libraries are a good thing, and then there’s Carnegie Hall, but in life he was a cut-throat son of a bitch and if there’s a hell (which I don’t believe), he’s roasting in  it.
If she had said ‘the evil cocksucker George Soros’ I would not have been so  offended, although I imagine some gay men might have.  If she had said ‘the hypocritical walking mound of decrepit, melting flesh that is George Soros’ that  might  be  ageist and appearance shaming, but I’d have  been cool  with it.
But, no.  Her idea of the worst insult she could hurl was ‘Jew’ and so she is gone from my Facebook page.

Free speech is important, it’s not as if I’d report her or anything.  But, life is too short to spend too much time dealing with racist assholes I don’t even know in real life.

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Easter

Easter was never my favorite holiday.  To Christians, it’s important.  To everybody else, it’s something about rabbits and eggs, and hard boiled is my least favorite way to  eat eggs, and I can have chocolate any day of the year.

Of course, Czech Easter traditions are even weirder, what with the  whip and all, but the Easter trees are sort of pretty.

Anyway, a couple of political thoughts on  this day, since everything is political, like it or not:  the Easter Egg roll was not nearly as  big a disaster for Trump as it could have been.  So what if he didn’t order enough eggs or have anywhere near as many people  walking around inn stuffed animal suits as Obama?  The only thing that’s important (for a politician) is for the press to get lots of pictures of people standing around and  cheering his speech, and the press has become very adept at doing that even if it’s a small crowd.

The incident of him having to be prodded by Melania to put his hand over his heart during the national anthem does more to make her look good than him look bad, and Barron standing up on the balcony looking bored as fuck doesn’t actually surprise anybody.  Signing a kid’s cap and then heaving it into the crowd was a dick move, but I don’t expect any uproar.  The kid was a Trump supporter, which means his parents are just as big dicks as Trump his.
So, tomorrow we’ll be back to real issues.

Then, there is a Facebook friend of mine, who I haven’t unfriended because a) I like having a few friends who are  more radically left than me to make me seem moderate, and b) because sometimes he’s right and c) because sometimes he’s funny, even though he’s kind of  an asshole who goes out  of his way to offend people and then pretends to be offended at their  offense.

Like Easter, he goes all out on  what a bullshit holiday it is, how  Christians plagiarized it from all the old  village religions, where people would eat a breakfast of eggs and rabbit, and then go out into the tall meadow to have sex.  Except Christians leave out the part about outdoor sex.

He’s got a point, I’m sure he’s factually  correct, but he’s just doing it to piss people off.  In his defense, he does prove that a lot of them can’t take a  joke, and that’s an important point to make.
So, here’s the deal, the  way I see  it.   You want to celebrate Christmas and Easter as Christian holidays?  Fine.   Knock yourself  out.  Have a good time in church.  But the rest of  us would rather  just sing songs about  reindeer, eat, drink and give presents.

We won’t give you any shit, you don’t give us any  shit.  Because you don’t actually own the days of the year.  You just don’t.

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Karlstein Revisited

We took a trip to Karlstein today, something that everyone who lives in Prague should do every couple of years or so, but we weren’t there so much for the castle, though we did walk through it on  our way back.

No, we were on our way to Maly Amerika, little America, which is an old quarry (I believe Velky Amerika-(big America-) is an active quarry).  We got well lost, wandered pointlessly through a forest and across a broad meadow just to try to  figure out where we were, friend Dave was all into the GPS and spent a good deal  of the walk looking at his phone, I was more into guessing blindly and not worrying about it too much, we wound up turning around in the lovely, little village of Mořina (with their very unfriendly dogs who, fortunately, remained behind their well built fences) and eventually asked somebody  directions.  I didn’t actually understand any of it, her Czech was too fast, but there were lots of hand gestures and basically it was ‘keep going straight.’

It was a great day for it, very cool for April, a bit of a light breeze and occasional sprinkles, but it  didn’t really come down  until we were in a restaurant afterwards.

It’s a beautiful spot, if a bit vertigo inducing – O.K., very vertigo inducing, but that’s just me.  Plenty of people were stepping right up to the edge to get a better picture.  I don’t get that, it’s like everybody is lacking a basic, necessary to survival, fear, which you would think would be evolutionarily bred into all of us.

Sort of how Helena feels about snakes.

 

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Another Night at the Tchaiovna

Spent the afternoon wandering around Žižkov, visiting places he hasn’t seen since he lived here, 15 years ago, and I have’ t been into in that long either, what with not drinking and having become sort of a social recluse, which is a Dad thing, partly, but I generally enjoy my routine.  Today was a step outside it, though.
First stop was U Vystřeleneho Oka, with the bloodiest statue I’ve ever seen in my life in front of the place.  A big eye, with an arrow (or some piece of jagged metal, at any rate, piercing it.  I’m probably not spelling it right anyway, though, so I’m switching back to an English keyboard now, so you can forget the haceks and carkas for the rest of this blog.

He was noting all  the things which are the same and all that is different.  Then we walked up Vitkov Hill to gaze upon the giant statue of one-eyed Jan Zizka, from whom the pub and, in fact, the neighborhood gets it’s name.

Then we walked to the Clown and Bard, which I remember as the loudest club I was ever in, at least one night when the band seemed completely oblivious to the size of the room (small) and turned the amps up to 11.  But, we were almost the only people there.

Then we headed back over to the Tchaiovna.  We pulled out a game of Carcassone, which I’d never played, and pretty quick a young couple, German guy, Latvian girl, joined us, and the games rolled on.  Before you know it, it’s near on to midnight and we have to move to catch the last Metro.  I’m not usually that into board games, it sort of strikes me as a conversation  about nothing, but it’s a conversation, nonetheless.

A good time was had.  Signing off now, to free up the living room and go to bed, it’s almost 1 o’clock.

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The Many Faces of Prague

The plan was to give him the local  tour, but it wound up being  a bit more than  that.  We started off at the local park, what I  call  Poetry Park because I’ve written so many there, and walked in front of the big, pink building and, which I have never done in all the years I lived here, read the information  on the tourist board.  That’s why it’s good to have tourists visit.  Then we walked over into  the wilds  across the river and some homeless people came out to shout at us, at least that’s what I  thought, but it turned out they were just looking for their dog.
Then I fired up a joint and then  we saw the ferry dock and I said ‘Hey, I’d like to check the schedule’ but I didn’t think they would have started yet for the year, but we stepped down and we could see the boat and then a family with small children arrived so I went back up the stairs to finish the joint and came back  down just as the ferry was pulling in and I had to hang on to the rope rail coming back  down because I  was  high like crazy, and we stepped onto the  boat and it wasn’t the local tour any more, but it  sure is a lovely view of Prague.

We stepped off in Prague 7, walked through the VietNamese market, then over  to Ouky Douky, which was the old Globe back in  the day when it was a trendy, fun, expat hangout and not the tourist trap in the center of town it is today.  Ouky Douky looks pretty much exactly as it did then, but now it is just a Czech sandwich  and coffee shop, which it does quite well as, I think.

After that, we went looking for his old flat, and sort of find out.  He’s pretty  sure we got the street right, anyway.  Then we walked through Letna park  and took in the views from the beer garden and the metronome (which isn’t moving.  How long has that been the  case?) and then wound our way down the hill and walked back across the river  before catching a tram home.

It’s great hosting visitors in Prague, because every single time you see  a different aspect of the city, and it’s an amazing city like that, where the points of view are fragmented, as if through the prisms of a million different eyes.

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Just Sayin’

One aspect of the United Airlines debacle that doesn’t seem to be getting mentioned enough, so  I’m going to mention it right now, is that the flight was from Chicago to Louisville.  You can  drive it  in about 5 hours.

If the UA crew members needed to be in  Louisville the next day so bad, they could have driven down.

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How can anybody screw up an Easter egg roll?  Seriously, the guy’s whole campaign was “I’m a businessman.”  He’s owned casinos, and resorts, and golf courses.  He’s never had  to organize an Easter egg hunt, or  some similar promotion?  No wonder his casinos all failed.  They probably didn’t bother with green beer on St. Patrick’s day, or giving a free drink to the ladies for Valentine’s Day, or doing a fireworks display for the 4th of July.  After a while, people just  forget you’re there.  Shit businessman is what he is.
Despite that, I would have thought that would be a Deep State kind of thing.  You know, like there’s some old guy who’s worked in the White House since Eisenhower who knows where to get the Christmas Tree, which turkeys deserve to be pardoned, that kind of stuff.  Because how can we expect Trump to rescue the economy and win WWIII if he has to think about how many plastic eggs to order?

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The DNC is all bragging about how they ‘came close’ in Kansas, which is shameful in view of the fact that they didn’t back James Thompson at all, he got no funds from the National Committee, zero, they’d written the seat off.  Because he’s a Berniecrat.
That,  my dear friends on the DNC (he says, voice dripping with sarcasm), that is the reason he was close in the first place.

The DNC is making it clear that they prefer to lose seats rather than have people in the party who actually are progressive, and have popular opinions.

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Sean Spicer is a Complete Fucking Idiot

I don’t believe that Sean Spicer actually meant to be a holocaust denier, although I’m not sure.  I think  it far more likely that he said ‘holocaust centers’ instead of concentration camps because he’s just a complete fucking  idiot and he forgot the words ‘concentration camp.’  I guess Schindler’s List wasn’t as great as everybody all  thought.

The statement that Assad was  just  as bad as Hitler because ‘Hitler didn’t gas his own people’ is a lot more troubling.  Sure, the Cleveland police killed a 12 year  old child holding a squirt gun (admittedly, it was a supersoaker, and they look like some kind of anti-tank rocket launcher, except sometimes in bright green and yellow plastic), but it wasn’t THEIR child.  Sure, the pharmacies are withholding lifesaving drugs from all but the rich, but hey, it’s not THEIR grandparents.

There is also, of course, the fact that many of the Jews to die in concentration camps (NOT holocaust centers, you fucking moron) were, indeed, German citizens.   Born  in Germany, spoke German, attended German schools, all that.

But how could Sean Spicer have been expected to know that?  He wasn’t around.

So, he criticizes Assad, and says he’s the same as Hitler.  Did Assad invade Poland, or  even any of the nations adjoining Syria?  No, he did not.  Did Assad design and build a whole  new class of killer submarines?  No, he did not.  Did Assad start a world war which killed cca. 18 million, give  or  take about 5 million?  No, he did not.

So, shut the fuck up on the holocaust remembrances, Stupid Spice.  That all happened before you  were born, and you obviously are no  student of history.

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