Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Sarasota's Resident Loose Cannon (HA!), Rich Swier, Wants To End Gun Violence By Giving Everybody Guns. No, Really, That's Not A Joke.
In a Sarasota Herald-Tribune op-ed piece regarding the recent spate of murders in Newtown, which is the red-headed step-child of the City of Sarasota, the author deduced that "illegal guns, drugs and gang activity seem to play significant roles in much of the violence" and that "to stem the shootings, stem the source: the all-too-easy flow of weapons into the wrong hands." Which to me, sounds like pretty straightforward stuff.
It's your typical S H-T non-controversial (who would argue with ending the near-nightly violence in a neighborhood?) editorial that only expresses some pollyanna banalities. Like "better parenting, better educational achievement, better economic opportunity and a better cultural attitude" would do the trick. Ya think????
But when it comes to non-controversial, feel-good ideas, our man Rich Swier can find a sinister, anti-American conspiracy in the best of them. To wit, his comment regarding the editorial:
"........I just watched a video of black gang members beating each other with 2x4s in Chicago. So what do we do? 2x4s are easy to get and cost nothing, do we outlaw 2x4s? Of course not, the problem is a lack of the rule of law in Newtown, so what else is new. Drugs, single parent homes, and a high rate of HIV/AIDS due to male sex with males makes Newtown a deadly place.
I was at the Bullet hole several months ago and watched a black woman buying a gun to protect herself. What we need to do is arm the citizens of Newtown like we did in Baghdad. That is the solution.
If the police can't handle the violence perhaps an armed citizenry can. That is what the Second Amendment is all about.
I am speechless. Almost.
When 2x4s kill as many people as do guns, then give me a call.
I'm not sure how a high rate of HIV/AIDS factors into people shooting other people, but the guy has a doctorate in something or other, so he must be right. Right?
And, as an aside to all you guys out there traveling through Newtown, apparently it's prudent to never bend over to tie your shoes there.
But perhaps the craziest thing he writes--and he writes some crazy shit--is that the way to curb the gun violence in Newtown is to give everybody there GUNS! Like we did in Baghdad. (We did?) Somehow, I think I'd feel safer walking through Newtown than I would walking through Baghdad, but, hey, that's just me.
His last "thought"--and I'm being generous here--is to pretty much foment vigilantism, calling the police ineffective and deciding that flooding the neighborhood with guns will handle the situation, because "that's what the Second Amendment is all about."
OK, I'm calling "bullshit" on that one.
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Everybody conveniently forgets about the "well-regulated Militia" part and only has the "keep and bear Arms" part tattooed on their hineys. We already have a "well-regulated Militia" called the National Guard. And by "well-regulated," our forefathers were not referencing daily bowel movements.
Now, I wonder what could have gotten Rich Swier so riled up. Maybe he feeling his oats with his recent victory in the battle of "Unconditional Surrender." Maybe he's gearing up for his "Drill, Baby, Drill" off the Florida coast campaign.
Or maybe just hearing about the upcoming release of "Going Rogue" by Sarah Palin got his juices flowing. Yee-haw.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Tebow, in the thick of leading his team during a hotly contested game with the University of Kentucky, had his legion of followers on the edges of their collective seats on Saturday night when he crumpled to the turf with an injury and had to be helped off the field.
Earlier in the day, it was reported that Tebow and several other players flew to Kentucky, on a separate plane because of an undisclosed respiratory illness and the fear of exposing the rest of the team to the ailment. Later, following his release from the UK Medical Center, it was learned that Tebow did not have the flu, as was thought earlier, but full-blown tuberculosis and somewhere over GA, he lapsed into a coma and his condition was downgraded to critical.
By the time the plane landed at the Lexington, KY, airport, the acute emergency care team dispatched to rush the young football star to the hospital, found Tebow had regained consciousness and appeared alert, actually editing and correcting the spelling of the game plan given to him by Coach Urban Meyer. He brushed off the UK doctors and said, "Excuse me, folks, I'm here to win a football game for my school and my fans," sprinting off in the direction of UK's Commonwealth Stadium.
As is his custom, Tebow played brilliantly for the first half of the game. Then, with less than four minutes remaining in the third quarter of the game and the Florida eleven leading by a scant 31 to 7 margin, Tebow was dealt a vicious blow by UK defensive end, Taylor Wyndham, who is reported to be on some sort of work release from a Kentucky prison, where he was serving time for murder, assault with a deadly helmet and overdue library fines.
Tebow lay motionless on the field. Trainers, doctors, head trauma specialists and a full ER team huddled around the athlete. While the partisan crowd, clad mostly in UK blue, except for the obligatory fat kids not wearing shirts, softly began to sing "Kumbaya" while they laced arms and slowly swayed back and forth, a priest was solemnly ushered onto the field to administer last rites to the fallen star.
Suddenly, bathed in a piercing beam of light, Tebow sat upright and signalled to the hushed crowd that he was OK with a jaunty 'thumbs up.' He was carried off the field and taken by ambulance to the University of Kentucky Medical Center. Doctors there quickly discounted
Coach Meyers assumption that it was a concussion, stating that when Tebow arrived at the hospital, he was suffering from a broken neck, a collapsed lung, internal bleeding from a ruptured aorta, a size 13 football shoe lodged in his left temporal lobe and a nasty brushburn on his right shin.
The medical staff, sensing the hopelessness of it all, tried to make their young patient comfortable, realizing that his imminent demise was certain and returned to watch the end of the game on the television in the doctor's lounge.
Sometime during the middle of the night, several nurses and staff said they witnessed a shadowy figure enter Tebow's room. When they went to investigate, there was no one there......except for the broken athlete, now bathed in an orange and blue aura, levitating above his hospital bed. Somewhere down the hall, trumpets sounded and Tebow spoke to the assembled staff, "My boys won didn't they? I didn't let my team down, did I?"
Scenes of the supernatural played out all over Gator Nation last night, while the faithful kept vigil for their star quarterback. Uber-fan Chris Seal in South Florida told CNN this morning that she, her husband and 4-year old daughter, all dressed in their matching lucky Gator pajamas, were watching the game when the injury occurred. "Naturally, we were all grief-stricken and in shock, " she related.
"Of course, none of us could sleep that night, waiting for word about Tebow. Sometime around 3:00 AM, our daughter went to the kitchen for a drink. When I went to check on her, I noticed her sitting at the table, tears streaming down her face."
"Oh, honey," I said, "Uncle Timmy will be all better, you'll see. Our daughter calls him 'Uncle Timmy' because we've taught her that we're all one big Gator Nation family."
"I know, Mommy," she replied. "Look, I spilled some orange juice while I was pouring it into my Big-Girl Gator cup and the puddle looks like UNCLE TIMMY. I just know he'll be alright, Mommy........"
News reporters from all major media outlets were streaming to the Seal house today from Pittsburgh, where they had been covering the G-20 summit. Said one hardened beat reporter, "I guess I've seen just about every rotten, disgusting and depraved thing wrong with this crazy world and brought it into America's living room right at dinnertime. And just when I was about to give up hope that there would ever be anything good again to report, this story shows that one little girl's faith in one media-blitzed, over-hyped, bigger-than-life college quarterback can make everything right in the world again, even if just for one night."
The Vatican, originally believing that Michelangelo's hallowed artwork that has adorned the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome for centuries had been somehow vandalized, has now dispatched their Congregation for the Causes of Saints team of investigators to determine if this was, indeed, a miracle, instead of just another college prank.
Ummmm, Vern; since you have been duly elected to the House of Representatives by your peers on Longboat Key and the people who wanted to keep their warranty in effect on the new cars that they bought from your Ford dealership, YOU ARE THE GOVERNMENT!!!
But, you're right. We don't have a lot of confidence in the government, either. Or in you, for that matter.
Maybe, even because of you.
Know whut I mean, Vern?
Friday, September 25, 2009
The much beloved Sarasota Orchestra, reeling from the economic downturn, proposed severe cost-cutting measures, including the request to cut the musicians' salaries, which range from $30,000 to $50,000, by 8% and having the wind section purchase their own reeds.
The musicians, who are represented by the American Federation of Musicians Gulf Coast Local 427-721, filed unfair labor practices against the Sarasota Orchestra, charging that they "failed and refused to bargain in good faith."
The Orchestra, caught off guard by this drastic measure, in turn, locked out the musicians and it was on. Charges, counter-charges, off-key verbal stylings and interpretations, insults, both sotto voce and molto forte, and the inevitable spitballs ("We were just emptying out our fluegelhorns....") were hurled to and fro.
Said Chesterfield Castrato, Esq., legal counsel for the Orchestra, "Look, these people work only 34 weeks out of the year and get a full benefit package. Sounds like pretty sweet music to me. It's not like we're asking them to march in parades and do half-time shows. If they don't like our terms, they should try their luck playing for quarters down on Main Street somewhere and see how far they get."
"Since we have obligations to the paying public," he continued, "the Sarasota Orchestra has arranged to hire replacement musicians, who will continue the fine musical tradition of the Orchestra."
Upon learning of this latest development, the musician's union sprang into action. Said union organizer Ostinato "The Leg Breaker" Tessitura, "Who the hell do these guys think they're fooling with here? I done my apprenticeship with the likes of Jimmy Hoffa, Jock Yablonsky and Tony Boyle. What, do they think I just fell off some non-teamster-driven turnip truck? Let's kick some ass!"
This morning, a confrontation erupted in front of the Van Wezel Concert Hall between union goons and non-union goons. The goons representing the Orchestra wielded lead pipes hidden in newspapers, blackjacks and switchblades, waded into the picketing musicians' goons, who were at a decided disadvantage, armed only with clarinets, piccolos and a triangle. The pitched battle raged for nearly an hour, with artist pitted against management and hired thug against hired thug. It was goon against goon.
Order was restored only when conductor Leif Bjaland leaped atop the burned out shell of an overturned SUV, standing alone there in the morning sun as it reflected jauntily off the lavender-hued walls of the Van Wezel, standing ever so majestically, like a matador who stares down danger and death with his steely, flinty gaze, literally compelling the warriors to stop in their tracks. Then, silently, he raised his baton, calling the bloodied factions to attention.
And, with that, the curtain came down on an ugly chapter in the ongoing dissonance between between musicians and the Orchestra. Will there be a repeat performance on the morrow? According to musicians union rep Tessitura, "Hell, yeah, we'll be back. This ain't over by a long shot. And tomorrow, we're bringing the friggin' tubas......"
Replacement musicians, hired by the Sarasota Orchestra, rehearse at a secure, undisclosed location somewhere on Longboat Key. Mrs. Chong's All-Korean Polka Maniacs will kick off the Orchestra's season next Friday evening with a black-tie event.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Paranoia Over Red-Light Cameras Sweep The Suncoast; Figures It Would Take '1984' Twenty-Five Years To Reach Sarasota
It's easy to get the rabble-rousers up in arms these days, what with the Tea Parties, fears of forced socialism and Nazis around every corner. The red-light camera debate serves to prey on those who are afraid of having the unseen, unknown powers-that-be infringe on their Constitutional Amendments Four through Six, inclusively.
Even though traffic cameras have been catching red-light runners since the '70s, this is a new concept on the Suncoast. Cameras record citizens every day, from when you make an emergency deposit at the bank to keep that check to the liquor store from bouncing, pick up a Slur-pee at the 7-11, abduct a little girl at the car wash, you unspeakable bastard, cruise the mall in those God-awful shorts that you shouldn't wear anywhere let alone in a public place, pilfer penny candy at Publix, buy wart remover at Walgreen's and lots of other places around town that you probably never even thought of.
But the difference is that our taxes are paying for these intersection cameras, although it's actually you and I that end up paying for all those cameras listed above through higher prices for goods and services anyway. And these traffic cameras will aid law enforcement in catching drivers who zip through red lights like they don't think that particular shade of red is sufficient for them to come to a stop and waste their precious time while others cars get to go.
Contrary to what the right-wing libertarian conspiracy theorists say, the cameras are here to stay. If the city or county makes money off them, well, that's OK, too, if it means that these jamokes running red lights because they were drafting a UPS truck in front of them as a means of conserving fuel and being "green" have to drop a few bucks in the state coffers. Perhaps relieving their wallets of a couple hundred bucks will allow more blood to flow down to their feet so they can step on the brake next time.
And maybe that'll keep you and me from getting T-boned at some intersection someday, too.
Mote Marine admits that "Waldo" was not used to research red tide, it actually took underwater pictures of swimmers to see who was peeing in the Gulf.
Former deputy, Clinton Knowles, has filed a federal lawsuit to recover attorney's fees and, if there's anything left over, for back wages and 'other financial compensation,' which might mean paying $4oo (the going rate for police payouts on the Suncoast) to the two women Knowles grabbed at a North Port Applebee's in Feb., 2008, only ONE DAY after being reinstated to full-duty status.
According to the lawsuit, Knowles was disciplined Oct. 24, 2007, for failing to report to duty and admitted to his bosses that he had such a problem with alcohol "that it affected his ability to do his work and had directly caused his failing to report to two assigned shifts." Now, not showing up for work for a couple days and telling the boss it's because you were shit-faced, usually means you've collected your last check from that place. Well, maybe not if you're a Congressman or a televangelist or something of that ilk. But to us mere mortals, it's the door hitting us on the ass on the way out, for sure.
Even before that, though, the lawsuit states that "he was regarded by his chain of command and colleagues as an alcoholic." You mean everybody knew this guy was a drunk and they still let him serve on THE SWAT TEAM?? Not the softball team, mind you, THE SWAT TEAM; that highly-skilled, highly-trained unit armed with high-power weaponry called in on high pressure situations that regular law enforcement can't handle. And he was high?
So they take this guy out of service for four months, then let him back on THE SWAT TEAM without him ever pursuing any outside intervention. Just because he said he was OK, I guess.
Except that the very next day, he gets lit up, goes to the North Port Applebee's to play grabass with two women, refuses to go to the police station to make a statement and doesn't even remember the incident because: "He had a blackout and has no memory of the incident." You mean that works?
In addition to what the lawyer's fees and whatever piddling amount that's left over for Knowles, his lawsuit states that he wants an order requiring the sheriff to "provide reasonable accommodation to deputy sheriffs suffering from alcoholism."
You mean there's more out there?
Collecting paychecks from the taxpayers?
Driving around on our streets in police cruisers?
6:00 AM roll call at the Sarasota County Sheriff's Department
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Said one county commissioner, "I think this will be big. So big, in fact, that I'm recommending to my fellow commissioners that we buy up a couple hundred acres of land for the future development of a Cougar Town theme park. I envision a Disneyesque setting, only with trendy bars, electric night clubs, elegant ristorantes, eclectic bistros and luxury hotels specializing in steamy trysts."
"Savannah is still making money off Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, New York City has Sex and the City tours; we used to have a Pee-Wee Herman tour here in town, but it kind of fizzled out several years ago."
Not to be outdone, Englewood now wants to be known as Codger Town, Arcadia wants to be called Cooter Town, Bradenton is playing up its new Cooler Town moniker and North Port would like to be called.......well, North Port.
Not everybody is thrilled over the prospect of this image re-invention for Sarasota, though. Briswold Firthminger, local retiree, would rather see things stay just the way they are. "I don't see what the big deal is about Wally Cox representing Sarasota." When corrected, he said, "Oh, Courtney Cox. Well, now, she's a cute little thing, isn't she?"
Also hoping to cash in on the new Cougar Town designation will be Bobby:
Polk County Cops Caught On Camera Playing Video Games On Duty Now Demand Wii Games At Every Crime Scene
Polk County Sheriff, Grady Judd, almost--almost--tried to defend his deputies, but was overcome by a wave of common sense and condemned their actions. The narrator estimates that the amount of time wasted by the 16 detectives playing Wii on this particular bust to be around $4,000. One unidentified detective took issue with that figure saying, "C'mon, it's not like all 16 of us stood around playing the game. There was only one game console, so some of us had to wait around 'til it was our turn. And a couple detectives didn't even play at all, choosing instead to watch a movie on the guy's DVD collection."
But what really rankles Sheriff Judd and the taxpayers of Polk County is that the deputies had so much fun playing Wii Bowling, the police union is demanding that a portable Wii unit be brought to all crime scene investigations. Said one unidentified deputy, "We put in a lot of tedious hours, interrupted only by the occasional moment of sheer terror every once in awhile. Some cops drink, some do drugs, some run around on their spouses, some quit the force to become disgruntled postal workers. If having a Wii Bowling game at the next domestic violence standoff or the next hostage situation saves the sanity of just one officer, it will be worth it. There's always a lot of waiting and standing around in those situations and the game would help ease the tension and boredom of the men and women on duty."
It has been reported that one of the detectives shown using the bowling game is currently on medical leave. Apparently, the officer that leaps for joy at rolling a strike at around the 55- second mark has filed a worker's compensation claim for a back injury suffered while "jumping up and down in the line of duty during an especially intense search-and-seizure investigation."
Sarasota Police Chief Peter Abbott thought the Wii Bowling game idea would work in Sarasota, as well. "I haven't really priced them out, but I bet they can be had for under $400. If this "therapy" works, think of the money we'll save in the long run by not having to shell out 400 bucks to drunks we arrest when our officers beat the hell out of them in front of the police station. Not to mention that this would greatly improve the scores of our departmental bowling team."
Monday, September 21, 2009
Conservative talk-show host, Don "Big Guns" Carothers, started the ball rolling this morning on his drive-time radio broadcast by telling his listeners that "this is a prime example of what is sending my America straight to hell, when two high school coaches get their misguided, socialist pointy little heads together and specifically tell their players to let this kid score a touchdown. Is that what made this country great? Hell, no, it's not!"
"This country was founded by men who scratched and clawed for everything they could get and the women who cooked and cleaned for them. That's why most of our founding fathers owned slaves, so they could set an example for the rest of us to use whatever means necessary to succeed, to make money, to win. What kind of message does this send to the other kids on the teams? Ooooh, everybody should have a chance; oooooh, everybody's a winner..... What a crock! The only good thing that came out of this is that is demonstrates to the kids what 'collusion' is and how it can work for their benefit."
Other right-wing talking heads complained that the unopposed touchdown, while not changing the game's final outcome, changed the point spread. "Who speaks for the gambling special interests? What about their rights?"
Said another, "These two guys--these coaches--should be fired. How dare they make a mockery of the sport of football. Football--true American football, not that kickball game that is soccer--is all about violence and blood and beating the other team senseless and winning, not namby-pamby displays of niceness. Niceness will never, ever get you anywhere, except beaten by the other guy. You want a life lesson? What we needed was a young Joe Wilson-type to run down there and dump that kid on his ass at about the 2-yard line. That, my friend, would be real life."
Tea Party presidential candidate, Wadley Nechanitz, called for the immediate dismissal of the coaches, as well as the school administrators who allowed a special-needs student on the team and wants all mention of the touchdown expunged from the record books. "This is America, this isn't the United Socialist States of Obamaland. It's time to recognize that all men are NOT created equal because all men aren't white, Anglo-Saxon Protestants. We are and you're not--deal with it or get out of our country!"
Matt is a special athlete who has Down Syndrome. He loves football and has grown up in an environment surrounded by sports. His father is a coach/ athletic director, and all his siblings play sports. He grew up at athletic events, and has always been a cheerleader. He registered as a freshman at Benton High School -Saint Joseph, MO this year, and told his mother and father he wanted to play football. The team takes good care of looking after Matt, and he is still the cheerleader on the sidelines. He puts his pads and helmet on, stands next to Coach McCamy and waits for his turn to play. Over and over during the course of the game Matt will say, “Coach McCamy, I am ready! I am ready Coach!” On this Monday night coach gave him a chance. The Cardinals were down by a few touchdowns with 15 seconds left. Coach McCamy called a timeout and asked the coach of Maryville High School if they could run their “Matt Play”. He agreed and this is where the video begins. Thanks to Coach McCamy and the freshman coach at Maryville, Matt and his family will cherish his moment forever!
Saturday, September 19, 2009
"This is what we've been leading up to for some time now," said City UberManager Bartolotta. "If we want tourists and new development in this town, we have to give our target demographic--the wealthy, of course--a reason to choose Sarasota to visit or live. That means no crime, no coddling of criminals, no homeless, nobody walking the streets that doesn't look like we do."
"Look at Main Street in Walt Disney World. Do you think they let bums hang out on their corners. Hell, no. No crime, no homeless, no vagrants; just squeaky clean kids that are always smiling, always singing, always happy and always--ALWAYS--ready to do whatever it takes to make the customers happy. If Disney is "The Happiest Place On Earth," we want Sarasota to be "The Happiest Place On Earth With A Stricter Dress Code And More Expensive Restaurants."
"Sarasota needs to attract new money to get this town back on track," continued Bartolotta, his voice rising. "Instead of worrying about police kicking handcuffed prisoners, locking up deadbeats who can't pay fines, the unemployed, those who don't speak English, those who don't look like us, those who don't act like us, those who have the audacity to question our decisions, those who think they have rights, we need to get rid of those 'distractions' and build upon our 'attractions.' Money, security, money, elitism, money, luxury, rampant development recreating a sanitized version of an Old Florida/Renaissance Italy conglomeration that everybody loves, money, detachment from reality; everything that makes life worth living. Did I mention money in there somewhere?"
New hires by the city include Virginia Hoffman and the Public Arts Commission who will determine if people are too ugly to live in the city, Longboat Key police officer Patricia Beardsley will be in charge of parking and traffic issues, Sarasota PD's Chris Childers will handle security and Bob Soran, it goes without saying, will be given a no-bid, guaranteed-return contract to raze Newtown and build luxury condominiums, trendy shoppes, upscale bistros and another mooring field, even though the area is landlocked.
With the influx of wealth into the city coffers and the lack of outflow to non-revenue generating community programs for the since 're-located' poor, Sarasota's enhanced police force will be able to provide an extremely safe, secure and pleasant environment in the city. Said new security czar Childers, "We will conduct periodic "sweeps" of city thoroughfares, ensuring that nothing or no one undersirable has slipped through our perimeter to upset our current or future potential taxpayers. Think of us as the clean-up crew that dresses up the beach every morning, getting rid of litter, seaweed, etc."
"We've had a lot of interest in what we're doing here," said community booster, Rich Swier. "I envision the City of Sarasota as one big gated community. You meet the requirements, you have the financial wherewithal, you're in. If you don't, go live somewhere else. That's why I favor drilling for oil on the coast, but only off public beaches, not private beaches. Like the public matters to people like us....."
Sarasota's new and improved police dept. conducts the 10:30 AM street sweeping operation. Don't worry, they're all Caucasian and speak English, just like you and me.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
A rapturous throng, estimated by Sarasota PD to be in the tens, milled about Main Street for several hours until the stroke of 9:48 AM, when candidate Nechanitz exited the First Watch Restaurant after conferring with Katherine Harris over a breakfast of corned beef hash and hanging chads, strapped on his familiar sign board and spoke to the gathered faithful.
Nechanitz, whose official bio lists his hometown as "Not Of This Earth," told the assembled crowd, "There is only one hope for this country--someone who is not evil. Therefore, since I am not evil, I am announcing my candidacy for President of the United States of Glenn Beckistan."
"My platform is simple and straightforward: I will disband the Federal Government, allow towns of over 5,000 citizens to form their own countries, declare the Democratic Party to be Nazi propagators of swine flu and have them quarantined for life and provide free rocky road ice cream for every man, woman and child in this country for life."
Seriously, is it that much more crazy than this:
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
In Wake Of 'Unconditional Surrender' Approval, Sarasota Orchestra Revamps Beloved Music Festival: Calling Al Yankovic....
"Right now, the biggest gig we have is to provide the music for the upcoming Jim Ed Parfrey's Monster Truck Pull and Ribfest at the Sarasota Fairgrounds next month," said Toulmin. "We've got a couple kids' birthday parties scheduled on Longboat Key, but with Aerosmith canceling their concert run, Joe Perry's been killing us by undercutting our prices."
"Personally, I think this town is going to hell in a handbasket," said one disgruntled clarinetist, privately. "I mean, Sarasota used to mean money and class, albeit other people's money, of course. It takes a lot of class to get people to willingly give you their money while you look them in the eye and smile at them. Those are the kind of people who supported the arts in this community. Class."
"But now, these former patrons are either in jail, on the lam, waiting for the expose of their scam to appear in the Herald-Tribune, have gone bust or are too busy trying to figure out their next get-rich-quick scheme. All of their disposable income is now going for attorney fees, not the arts."
The recent spate of anti-culture sweeping the city has had a chilling effect on other arts venues, as well. The Sarasota Reading Festival has been scrapped and replaced by a comic book convention," blamed, in part, by the arrival of Ikea to the Tampa area, as the furniture mecca only prints assembly directions in pencil drawings, instead of words. Said one wag, "Reading is no longer 'fundamental,' it's obsolete and old-fashioned."
Arts Day in downtown Sarasota, long a confluence of many forms of artistic endeavor, is to be replaced by what the promoter is calling "(F)Arts Day." Explained Ednalee Harklestein, spokeswoman for Chock Full O' Beans Productions, "We are recruiting teams sponsored by area restaurants like El Adobe, Mi Pueblo, Wings N' Weenies, etc., who will use flatulence to express themselves artistically by "tooting" or "burping" a rendition of a classical music composition. We will have categories by age, of course, but expect the overwhelming majority of entrants to be in the 80 and older group."
Toulmin said that this year's re-tooled Sarasota Music Festival will occur on only one Thursday afternoon, instead of the traditional three weeks in June, and will take place at Five Points featuring Willie "The Percussionist of Pilsner" Rafshoon. "I actually don't know how long his performance will last," said Toulmin. "I understand he only knows this one selection....."
Monday, September 14, 2009
Lawman Deftly Avoids Gunplay in Thrilling Arrest of Desperado!
The Miller Gang, which had struck terror in the hearts of law-abiding citizenry everywhere, will soon face the stern visage of Lady Justice. The pistoleros, operating beyond the reach of lawmen in North Port, known locally as the 'town that couldn't be tamed', were brought low by the relentless pursuit of Norman "The Long Arm of the Law" Azan, a Federal officer.
According to eyewitness reports from the scene, Mr. Azan and his lovely wife were taking a leisurely Sunday evening carriage ride on the outskirts of town on Chamberlain Road. When they passed the old Miller homestead, they were accosted by a gun-wielding youth. Mr. Azan leapt from his conveyance and subdued the young brigand, as well as his two accomplices. Only after disarming the lad did Mr. Azan realize that the villain's firearm was in a non-functioning condition.
Upon hearing the commotion, the gristly, gray-haired mother of the boy beset upon Mr. Azan and demanded the return of the youngster's pistol. Just then, the eagle-eyed lawman, beseiged on all quarters by every manner of hostile personages, noted the quick exit from the ramshackle cabin by Old Man Miller. He went round his buckboard and retrieved what is believed to have been a stick used to strike the baseball, which is used in the game of the same name, as the Miller boy plays for the local nine in happier days.
Old Man Miller came at the unflappable federal man, brandishing his 'bat' in a most threatening fashion, ordering Mr. Azan to remove himself from his property forthwith and without delay. Mr. Azan, never one to back down from a fracas, declared himself to be a federal agent and offered his badge as proof of his claim, all the while standing his ground with a stubborn tenacity borne of the moral rectitude that comes with being a instument of the law.
In the meanwhile, the elder Miller, veritably enraged by the events and unable to be calmed by the either the entreaties of his family members present or the unflinching demeanor of Mr. Azan, continued to menace the agent. Mrs. Azan, nearly swooning from the excitement and the gravity of the situation, rushed to enlist the aid of neighbors to help defuse the powderkeg of emotion. One willing Good Samaritan had just had a telephone installed in his abode and was in contact with the local constabulary straightaway.
Federal agent Azan, imperturbable and unexcitable, continued to stare down the peril he faced at the hands of the increasingly-agitated Mr. Miller. Just when Mr. Azan was about to unleash his trusty Navy Colt revolver from its resting place upon his hip and let loose the fire and death pent up therein, several members of a hastily-formed posse thundered down the well-worn ruts of Chamberlain Road and pulled up abruptly at the scene of the encounter.
The local sheriff, following a brief conversation with Agent Azan and the verification of his proffered law enforcement credentials, ordered Mr. Miller to cease and desist and took him into custody by placing the shackles of righteousness upon his wrists. Despite the protests of Miller's wife and son, he was transported to the hoosegow in North Port, where he shall remain ensconced until the circuit judge rides this way again sometime in the autumn, when his intolerable behavior will be examined and adjudicated in a court of law.
Mr. Azan, long a credit to his badge, was hailed as a hero by his friends and neighbors. Said one, "This incident could have gone the way of that OK Corral skirmish out West. Fortunately, our Mr. Azan is not as bloodthirsty or violent as are the Earp brothers and preferred to use his wit and steely resolve to quell the volatile Mr. Miller, rather than more sanguinary means."
Newspapers carried the account of the action and we suspect that flinty Mr. Azan will soon be the hero of every school child throughout the land, praised for his devotion to duty and resourcefulness under fire and his exploits, surely the subject of dime novels to come, will become legendary in the annals of the domestication of North Port.
Actual photograph of Kid Miller, former Scourge of North Port
Following the awards show, West apologized for his interruption. When pressed by reporters, West said defiantly, " "I am not going to apologize again. I've apologized one time. The apology was accepted by Taylor Swift and by the vice president, who I know," he said. Vice-President Biden allowed that he knew the controversial rapper, saying, "We chilled together for a time, you know, doing the party circuit, chasing the ladies. He was in my crew 'til we both went our own ways, he went into the seedy world of gangsta rap and thug hip-hop, while I went to the dark side--politics."
West said of his outburst that he was overcome with the emotion of the moment, but still believes that Swift was about to misstate the facts. "I didn't want the young people of America to be subjected to her socialist propaganda and lies."
Florida Republican Party chairman Jim Greer immediately rushed.to West's defense, saying that he, too, didn't want Swift to "indoctrinate America's children to her socialist agenda." He also made West an honorary Florida Republican and issued him his own party credit card. (Actually, it was Ray Sansom's old card, but Greer scratched out his name and wrote in West's.)
Greer said he was also extending an invitation to join the state's chapter of the GOP to tennis star, Serena Williams. Said Greer, "We never even considered asking Williams to join us until that show she put on at the US Open, shouting and cursing at the line judge. That girl has got some mouth on her."
Newest GOP media darling, Joe "LOOK AT ME" West (R-S.C.), thought that West had his heart in the right place. "If I thought I could have gotten past that mean, old bitch Pelosi, I would have done the same thing by grabbing the microphone from Obama and would have gone off on him, right then and there. But I knew Pelosi would have tackled me before I got within 20 feet of her guy. You saw the look she shot at me when I had the balls to speak up for the truth. I would have gotten my ass kicked. Fortunately, I have excellent health care as a Congressman....."
West is expected to make the rounds of the conservative talk shows today, including Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity and the rest. Said West, "I wish I could have made it to DC over the weekend to march with my Tea Party homies, but that Nazi Taylor Swift had to be stopped and I knew that I had to do it."
Why doesn't somebody interrupt these lunatics? "No tissue paper 'til the end of the year?" Who knew?
Friday, September 11, 2009
Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) Plans New Ways To Heckle At Presidential Addresses With His Frat Buddi---Er, His Fellow Republican Legislators
Rep. Wilson, who has railed against Obama for not providing any details of his plan, decided to take a cue from the legion of loudmouths that show up at meetings about the health care plan specifically to shout down the speaker and, instead of listening to what the President's plan was, he would just point at him and call him a liar. Expecting to get a standing ovation from his GOP cronies, especially the one holding the handwritten sign that read "What Bill?", Wilson was surprised to see his fellow Republicans squirm in their seats like one of their number just ripped a resounding fart and they were avoiding eye contact at all costs so nobody would think it was them.
Wilson made the obligatory half-hearted apology, hoping not to get sent to the principal's office. But when he went back to boy's room to sneak a cigarette, the guys all told him that was a really cool thing he did and that he was officially now a member of the badass club.
Feeding on the adulation of Tea Baggers, right-wing arch-conservative radio and TV hosts and other assorted loose cannons, Wilson is now going around Washington with a newfound swagger. "That's right, I'm bad. That's right....."
At an all-night kegger last night with his Fellowship frat buddies at the C Street Center (where all the DC hypocrites hang out), Wilson came up with all sorts of "really, really cool ideas." At future Presidential addresses or State functions:
- Wilson and two other Republican Congressmen will stand up together and take off their shirts and ties to reveal their chests painted with the letters "G", "O" and "P" in blue and gold paint,
- they will smuggle in air horns,
- they will bring in howler monkeys, dressed in little three-piece suits and poke them with sharp sticks at the appropriate times,
- they will appear to be coughing into their hands, but actually saying "bullshit." That always gets them going at basketball games when the fans don't like a call......
- throw rubber chickens,
- yell "Elevator, elevator, we got the shaft!"
- shoot spitballs across the aisle at Democrats,
- make fun of Hillary Clinton's recent weight gain,
- close their Bibles loudly and often,
- stretch and yawn, looooong and loooooud,
- pretend they fallen asleep and snore aloud,
- crank up the ringer volume on their cellphone and call each other. When a phone rings, announce to everyone that you've gotta take this call, then loudly discuss the sexual proclivities of the lobbyist and whomever else your screwing, ie, CA state lawmaker and newest Republican bad boy, Mike Duvall, did recently into an open microphone during a break in committee hearings in Sacramento.
Meanwhile, reports have surfaced that Wilson has rescinded his apology and has dared Obama to meet him in the parking lot of the Capitol to settle this thing mano y mano. No word yet from spokesman, Rahm Emanuel, on whether or not the President will accept the challenge.
Stay classy, South (Birthplace of the Confederacy) Carolina
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Obama, Trying To Revive His Flagging Popularity, Stuns Nation By Naming Ellen Degeneres To Supreme Court
She was fired by administration hatchet man, Rahm Emanuel, at the behest of President Obama, who is desperate to bolster his waning poll numbers in the face of mounting challenges. "We lost the buzz from naming the first Hispanic woman to the high court and, with this health care thing threatening to drag us down into the Mariana Trench, we felt we needed a blockbuster and Ellen is it!" gushed Emanuel.
"She has great TV presence, legions of fans and will bring a breath of fresh air to that stodgy old institution," he continued. "And when we couldn't come up with the money that Oprah wanted, we felt that Ellen was the horse to ride in this race. Her appointment is all but assured, given her popularity. What senator in his right mind would vote against Ellen? That would be like voting against puppies."
Constitutional law scholars were scurrying to determine the legality of such a move by a sitting administration, but have yet to find an appropriate precedent in historical records.
Ms. Degeneres has no plans to quit her daily television show. "From what I can see, the justices don't really work that many days, so I'm sure I can continue with my hosting gig. And when we do have to be in session, the producers will get a fill-in host. I hope to have all the judges on my show in the near future. We're going to have a great time, I just know it. I can't wait to get Ruthie (Justice Ginsburg) and John Paul (Justice Stevens) up and dancing, like I do on my show. I'm a little concerned about Clarence's (Justice Thomas) dancing--he might be better than me...."
"Well, I always wear a lot of black, so I think that kinda qualifies me for my new job." Ellen Degeneres, Supreme Court nominee
All Vestiges of Culture to Leave Sarasota Due to Acceptance of "Unconditional Surrender" Affront to Art (And I Don't Mean Nadel)
"We can see the handwriting on the wall and the poor people have spoken," said one arts maven, in the process of shuttering her prestigious downtown gallery. "The old Sarasota is gone forever. No longer does money equal good taste here. It's almost like Sarasota is becoming, dare I say it, a democracy. And isn't that just too plebian for words?"
Plans are underway to convert several Suncoast landmarks from their rich, cultural heritage into venues that are more in line with the new tastes of Sarasotans. The historic Asolo Theater, Ringling's recently-renovated 18th-century jewel box theater, is being reconfigured to host Ultimate Fighting Championship bouts.
The immaculate lawn of the Ringling Museum will be excavated and flooded to be used for swamp buggy mud bog racing. The museum's fine art collection is being liquidated to purchase velvet Elvis and poker-playing dog paintings. And the historic Ca d'Zan is soon to become Casa de Juan's Topless Cantina, Tattoos and Donkey Rides.
The Sarasota Orchestra has disbanded, the Sarasota Ballet has leapt at the chance to move to Arcadia and the Sarasota Opera, fittingly, has had the fat lady sing for the last time. The Sarasota Herald-Tribune announced that it will become exclusively comic strips, featuring the likes of Nancy and Sluggo and Beetle Bailey, but without Thursday Ticket's beloved laugh riot Squareasota by Austin McKinley, which is actually the pen name of Prisoner 3810753 in the Sarasota county jail, who writes the strip only when he has bad LSD flashbacks from his past.
Sarasota's beaches, once the pride of the area, will allow smoking, drinking, camping, pets, guns, nude swimming, ATVs and all manner of livestock to enjoy the sand and surf. McDonald's and Burger King are vying for former Suncoast hot spots like the Chart House, Euphemia Hayes and Michael's On East. St. Armand's Circle has begun preparations to turn the once-upscale shopping area into a mini-Nascar go-cart track, lined with bars and T-shirt shops.
The Sarasota Ritz-Carlton has been sold to the Super 8 motel chain and the Hyatt is slated to become a Motel 6.
The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall has scrapped its entire lineup of orchestral offerings and Broadway show revivals and is working in conjunction with the Joyland country-western bar in Bradenton to book local country bands, although the upcoming visit by horror author, Stephen King, will take place as planned. Said a Van Wezel spokeswezel, "We have decided to keep Mr. King on our roster, since he is a local resident. And, frankly, he just scares the bejeebers out of us."
Mr. King's local status may soon be changing, though. Suncoast realtors report a tidal wave of luxury residences coming on the market, as the wealthy from Casey Key to Longboat Key flee the area in search of more money-friendly locales. Said one Longboat Key realtor, "I've got more mansions for sale right now than fleas on a coon dog's ass after a huntin' trip through Big Gator swamp. I don't really know exactly what that means, but I'm trying to reach out to my new demographic. But what I do know is that NOW IS THE TIME TO BUY!!!!
Sarasota's new society debs, Wanda Washington McFly and Tarnequa Stompecelli, visit the exhibition of graffiti and contemporary gang sign interpretations at the newly-renovated Thug Theater Yo, just prior to the start of concert by hip-hop artists, Kill Your Parents Yo.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Milledge, now an outfielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates after being traded from the Washington Nationals after being traded from the New York Mets, has had a long-standing reputation for being a troublemaker and disruptive player. Last night's incident will certainly go a long way in reinforcing that perception.
Sources indicate that prior to last night's baseball game, Palmer, who was born and raised near Pittsburgh and is still considered a favorite son, was at the stadium to be feted by the city on the occasion of his 80th birthday. While on a pre-game tour of the clubhouse, Palmer was meeting the players and approached Milledge near his locker.
Milledge, relaxing and listening to his iPod, was visibly annoyed with the unwelcome interruption and punched the surprised octogenarian in the stomach. Palmer, to his credit, took the punch, staggered a step or two backwards, then lunged at the younger aggressor.
"I'll kick your ass, you little bastard," shouted Palmer, dropping the baseball star with a deadly one-two combination. "Who's your daddy, now, Mr. Bad-Ass 'Cause I've Got Dreadlocks?" said Palmer, standing over the prone Milledge. Shock and disbelief turned to cheers and handshakes all around by Milledge's teammates and on-lookeers alike. "And get a haircut."
The feisty golfing legend called Milledge a "cocky little son of a bitch" and said he would be wise to respect his elders in the future, before exiting the locker room to enjoy the planned birthday festivities and subsequent baseball game.
Said one unidentified Pirate player, "Look, I know we both play on the same team, but there's not a guy on this roster that didn't enjoy seeing Millhouse (his team nickname) get dropped like that. And I can guarantee you that there's a lot of guys still playing for Washington and the Mets that would have wanted to do it themselves, not to mention the fans in those places. It was just great to see a hometown legend put that punk-ass in his place."
Milledge was a last minute scratch for the local nine, due to a "non-baseball-related injury," according the the official press release.
Milledge sucker punches golf great, Arnie Palmer, in stomach, before being knocked unconscious by the King of Swing. Next time, Lastings, you should try the old 'hit-and-run.'
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
A sampling of students from here on the Suncoast presented a fairly accurate picture of the student response nationwide to the speech.
Sarasota's Riverview HS student, Ashlee A., offered her insight into the presidential address: "Like, OMG, while the President was talking, like, I was so inspired. He said something--I forget what--and, like, this super-awesome idea just kinda popped into my head. Since I'm, like, the head cheerleader, I thought of this really super-cool routine for Friday night's game. So, like, Ashley will link arms with Ashleigh, then me, Ashlee, will, like, flip over them and be caught by Ashton, our yell leader, then Ashlynn will do the same. It's gonna be sooo super-fab!"
Ashlee's classmate, Josh H., had this to say about the speech: "I dunno. I mean, I heard the dude talkin', but I really wasn't payin' too much attention. See, I sit a row over and two seats behind this cheerleader, Ashlee, and she was wearin' her cheer outfit and, like, all I could think about was her. I mean, I know she doesn't even know who I am, but I saw her writin' a bunch of stuff and I was just thinkin' was what if she was writin' a note to me, sayin' she had this crush on me and stuff or writin' to a girlfriend of hers tellin' her about this really cute kid in her class and it would be me and we would go to the prom and everybody would be all, like, jealous and stuff."
A third opinon came from another classmate, Penwell R., who said: "Who was that guy talking? Dude was boring, man. Blah, blah, blah. I figured it was a good time for some zzzzzzs, except this jerkoff that sits beside me named Josh kept breathing real hard the whole time. I thought the dude was gonna have a stroke or something. Anyway, the president or whoever that was could have done a lot better if he would have had an opening act like Fergie or the Dogg or been, like, a Transformer, know what I'm saying? Now that would have been freakin' awesome!"
Once again, America's school children have demonstrated their amazing ability to peer into the very maw of the political process of this country and come out of this forge of rhetoric none the worse for wear.
Now, it's on to next week when Rush Limbaugh is scheduled to deliver the Republican response to the President's speech, where he is expected to take virulent exception to Obama's socialist message of work hard and stay in school.
"No, madam, your child will not spontaneously combust if she hears the President speak......"
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Sarasota Boaters To Join "Hunt For Yellow September" Submarine Lost In Area Waters: Where's Jack Ryan When You Need Him?
Publicly said to be owned by Mote Marine Labs in Sarasota, any true conspiracy theorist will tell you that the yellow sub in question (named, appropriately enough, "Waldo") is either:
- the real Russian nuclear submarine patrolling our shores, just waiting for the signal from the Kremlin to rein down nuclear annihilation upon the heads of innocent American women and children, or
- owned by Exxon and is scouring the Suncoast for the best places to drill for oil on our beaches and is piloted by Rich Swier, Sarasota's own windbag/shill for Big Oil and America, which, to him, are one in the same, who is missing at sea when he lost sight of the Unconditional Surrender landmark on the bayfront, or
- is lost forever, say some original conspiracy buffs, as it has gone off the "edge of the worlde, into the Fiery Pits of Hell itself," or
- recovered by two guys in a bass boat from Arcadia, who have since disassembled it and sold it for scrap to buy more beer for their next fishing expedition, or
- recovered by two guys in a Bayliner from Lakewood Ranch, who sold it to Linger Lodge, where it is now mounted on the wall with the rest of the examples of local wildlife, or
- devoured by the ravenous sea monster known as "Kanga of the Deep," who lives in an underwater cave off Caspersen Beach and eats young, sunburned children and excretes red tide, or
- is lost in what local mariners refer to as the 'Venice triangle,' an area from Sharkey's Pier northward to the south jetty and extending 9 miles off the coast, which over the years has become the graveyard to numerous boats and aircraft and is the real reason that the FAA is poking around Venice airport, since radio frequencies are routinely interrupted in the area, or
- has been sucked to its doom in the swirling 'Vortex of the Damned,' located several miles off the coast of Venice where secret government death panels have been shipping elderly residents for years.
Brainwashed children, indoctrinated by the Obama administration, sing the praises of the missing sub.
Friday, September 4, 2009
Obama Speech To School Children Revealed; Parents Wish To God That It Would Only Have Been About His Socialist Agenda
While right-wing, God-fearing, gun-toting, brain-washed paranoid-conservatives have already expressed their doubts about their little Zeke or Faith listening to the socialism-spewing cause of everything wrong in this country today, now even the left-wing, Godless, tofu-toting, brain-washed liberal elitists are concerned about their little Jazz or MistyMoon being exposed to the controversial message of their former idol.
Said one administration spokesperson, "There is no cause for alarm. Your President only wishes to speak to your children about being good citizens. He means them no harm. Please return to your homes and do not interfere."
So, what has everyone from Academics to Zoologists so concerned about the President's upcoming message?
SEE AND HEAR FOR YOURSELF BY CLICKING HERE
if you dare......
"I'm just a little kitten. President Obama loves little kittens. Don't you love little kittens, children?"
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
CA Governor Arrested In Arson-For-Profit Scheme, Says He Was Only Trying To Save State From Bankruptcy
Wild Thing, she of the faaaaaaaar right-wing lunatic fringe den of doom, gloom, despair and everything else Republican and neatly wrapped up in the American red, white and blue called Theodore's World, has issued a stirring call to arms against the health care bill, as seen in Sarasota Speaks, because it "breeches" IRS privacy. Penned by that bastion of fairness and impartiality, Dick "The Toe-Sucker" Morris, who, according to him, single-handedly got Bill Clinton re-elected, then abruptly resigned from the Clinton campaign when the story of his somewhat off-kilter affair with a prostitute surfaced and has since become a darling of the conservatives by bashing anything Democratic.
Co-author, Eileen McGann, is actually Mrs. Dick Morris, who helps hubby write books (like the prescient blockbuster "Condi vs. Hillary: Who Will Be President in 2008?"), as well as, I would suspect, helps keep her husband away from prostitutes.
Call me a stickler, but my public school education (a socialist idea, if ever there was one, by the way) taught me that 'breaches' means 'breaks the law or a promise' while 'breeches' means 'britches,' as in pants. And, by pants, I mean trousers, not breathing hard and drooling, as author Morris is wont to do around a sexy set of toes that belong to someone other than his co-author.
Of course, 'breeches' can also mean the opening in gun barrels where ammunition is chambered. Wild Thing, fancies herself a stone-cold military killing machine, so I can see where there could be some confusion.....
English: the official language of Republicans. Learn it or get out of our country."
The next time you sweet talk a, what I'm sure you considered to be a fine-looking, young lady into taking you back to her apartment, maybe slip her a couple of roofies, undress her and take some pictures of her to pass around at the office or to send into the Hot Naked Drunken Sluts website, TAKE THE CAMERA WITH YOU, dude, don't leave it in her apartment.
And your keys, you should definitely remember to take your keys with you, too.
You should also upgrade to a digital camera instead of one of those $3 disposable cameras. Walgreens doesn't develop those kind of pictures, so you would have probably gotten your dumb ass busted there, too.
And then you call the bitch, say you're sorry and ask her not to turn you in? You're a disgrace to wanna-be pornographers and peeping Toms everywhere.
Damn, Sherm, you're acting like this is the first time you've done this, man.