Category Archives: NFL

Hot Air

An Advertiser Is Getting Itchy

A woman named Karen Ogden, who describes herself as “a part-time writer who works within a variety of communities as part of domestic violence outreach programs,” read one of my screeches about domestic violence and the National Football League. She sends in this communique about Verizon Wireless, one of the NFL’s big ad partners:

Hi,

I was checking out this page on your site: http://electronpencil.com/2014/09/10/hot-air-144/

Amid all the recent horrific domestic violence reports from the NFL, Verizon Wireless, one of the league’s biggest partners, has stepped up to reaffirm its stance on domestic violence: We must all band together to end domestic violence.

The company’s CEO, Lowell McAdam, made it clear in a recent editorial that the real issue at hand is not the image of Verizon or the NFL, but “the scourge of domestic violence itself.” He noted that it’s highly likely that you know someone who have been abused, physically or emotionally, by someone close to them. 

According to the Avon Foundation for Women, 60 percent of Americans know someone who has been abused while 22 percent of people are victims themselves. Those staggering statistics only further drive home McAdam’s main point: We need to talk about domestic violence, because that is the only way we can eliminate the culture of denial surrounding the topic.

To help accomplish this goal, Verizon launched a new public awareness campaign this past June called Voices Have Power. You can see it here:

http://www.voiceshavepower.com/

It is an online, social media platform that allows users to send messages of hope to victims of domestic violence. And for every message sent through the service, Verizon will donate $3 to domestic violence prevention organizations throughout the U.S. 

If you would like to participate in Voices Have Power, you can do so via text at 94079 or through social media using the hashtag #VoicesHavePower.

Voice Have Power is run through HopeLine (http://www.verizonwireless.com/aboutus/hopeline/index.html), a program started in 1995 to provide domestic violence organizations and shelters with recycled wireless phones and accessories. Victims then receive the refurbished phones with free minutes and texting plans. Since 2001, they have donated more than $21 million in cash grants and 180,000 cell phones. 

In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, can you help spread the word about the #VoicesHavePower fund raising campaign? Every message shared provides hope for victims and is $3 raised for domestic violence prevention.

Thank you so much!

Sincerely,

Karen

Generally, I don’t pay attention to companies trying to burnish their images through supposed community awareness programs but, oh, I dunno, maybe I’m feeling generous this AM.

Again I’ll remind you, if you hear what sounds like a violent domestic disturbance, drop a dime. If you’re wrong, so what? Also, if you know of somebody who slugs a lover, a wife, a daughter, or anybody of any sex just so he can get his way, shun the hell out of him. And don’t bug me with bushwa about how there are men out there who get beaten by their female partners. That’s misdirection, folks. Domestic violence is a guy thing. Guys have muscles; women are taught to blame themselves for “misunderstandings.” It’s a lousy equation that harms and even enslaves far too many females.

The Right To Be Wrong

Now comes news that one of those weird fundamentalist theme parks wants the Commonwealth of Kentucky to foot a multimillion-dollar chunk of the bill to operate its fabrication machine.

Yeah, some joint under construction called Ark Encounter and run by the Answers in Genesis cult wants KY to give it an $18 million tax break so it can spread its bizarre mythology. AiG also runs the Creation Museum, across the Ohio River from Cincinnati and, in general, tells the world that scientists are wrong and the Bible, word-for-word, is right. The whole shebang is overseen by a zealot named Ken Ham, which is ironic because of the biblical injunction against eating pork.

Ham

Ken Ham

Anyway, AiG somehow snookered Kentucky officials to approve a hefty tax break for them which, a cursory understanding of the US Constitution indicates, violates the Establishment Clause. Ark Encounter is under construction in Williamstown, near the Petersburg home of the Creation Museum.

As you can imagine, the tax break raised a frightful din among church/state separationists and civil liberties fans. Next thing you know, Kentucky officials withdrew their break. Now AiG is claiming it has a First Amendment right to the tax break. See, the outfit is only trying to exercise its free speech rights and the Commonwealth, by denying the tax break is crushing its voice. Like the Nazis did. And Stalin. And what the hell do you expect in a nation now run by a Nazi/Stalinist/Kenyan phony president?

Me? I don’t care what these religious fanatics believe. They have every right in the world to have faith that the sun will rise in the west tomorrow morning. But if they’re looking for any federal, state, or municipal dough to spread their speciousness, they’ll hear from me and a lot of others like me.

Enemies?

How does the above entry fit in with yesterday’s sermon here about how we all — Right and Left, Democrat and Republican, believer and non-believer — should stop seeing each other as mortal enemies out to destroy our beloved nation as well as civilization itself?

Hitler

Nowadays, Everybody Is Hitler

Pretty well, I’d say, with a bit of explanation. Neither President Barack Obama nor Governor Mike Pence are fascists intent on crushing all our hopes and dreams. Now, I disagree with pretty much everything Mike Pence stands for, sure. I wouldn’t vote for him if he were running against Justin Bieber (I just wouldn’t show up on election day — and, BTW, how prescient will I seem if and when JB ever runs for public office? You think it couldn’t happen? Are you new to America?)

Anyway, guys like Pence have what I consider to be a misguided faith in free market capitalism. The Invisible Hand makes about as much sense to me as an invisible father in the sky. Pence wants, I’m sure, all the homeless to have homes, all the uninsured to get medical care, and all god’s children to be able to vote. But only after those who have get even more — so much more that letting a little bit trickle down to the have-nots isn’t going to affect them one way or the other.

Funny thing is, Barack Obama’s worldview isn’t all that terribly far off from Pence’s. Yet too many in the Pence crowd still see Obama as the bastard child of Angela Davis and Fidel Castro. No matter, my non-vote for Pence and others like him does not infer that I view him and his gang as the spiritual brothers of Heinrich Himmler.

I merely disagree with them.

Now then, what about my snarky, disrespectful, insulting take on people like Ken Ham? Why won’t I embrace him and tell him he’s my brother? For the same reason I don’t embrace the guy walking the streets who, interspersed with random obscenities, is shouting about people following him and how all woman are whores. I may wish him well; I may hope his derangement is ameliorated one day. But I’m not going to say to him, “I respect your opinion, my good man.”

His opinion deserves no respect. Nor does Ken Ham’s.

 

Hot Air

Sweet Medicine

Whatever you do the next few days, make sure you get yourself down to Lake Monroe and catch the sunset. It’s been brilliant — jaw-droopingly so — since, oh, Sunday evening.

Sunset

A Priceless Show

Steve the Dog and I have been taking it in all this week. It’s an especially effective tonic if you’ve been feeling the world has gone mad of late. Hell, who hasn’t been wondering if ebola, ISIS, Putin and the Ukraine, and even the very existence of Sen. Ted Cruz are omens of humanity’s coming suicide. (Memo from Big Mike: They’re not; the world is no madder than it’s ever been.)

Anyway, S the D and I usually make one pass over the lake going southbound on SR 446, turn around in Cutright, and then backtrack north, just to catch the sky show from the causeway. Then we turn into Paynetown and park in the lot on the point past the beaches and the Interpretive Center and just gawk from there. (Well, I gawk; Steve sniffs stuff.)

Honest, I almost wish I believed in god so I could thank somebody for the display.

Felon

One of the bestselling “authors” in this holy land today is a fellow by the name of Dinesh D’Souza, whose “writing” is comprised mostly of inventing canards against the worst president we’ve ever had. In fact, Barack Hussein Obama is the worst leader any civilization on this planet or any other world in the known Universe has had to endure.

Plus, a young Obama had the gall to grow up with an absentee father, acc’d’g to D’Souza’s documentary 2016: Obama’s America, and that’s why the worst prez in history hates our blessed and exceptional nation.

D’Souza’s book, America: Imagine a World without Her, has been loitering near the top of the New York Times hardcover non-fiction (teehee) best seller list since its release in June. Those on the Far Right have eaten it up like a pack of dung beetles consuming a steaming mound of elephant shit.

America

Some who prance about (joylessly, of course) in the ultra-conservative echo chamber have even openly wished that D’Souza could run for president in 2016, even though he’s never held public office, has never done an executive’s job, and is a loon. Not only that, he is Constitutionally barred from running for C-in-C because he was born in India. That part of our founding document is not spelled out in the Second Amendment so some Right-wingers may be unfamiliar with it.

Looks like they’ll have to stash those Dinesh for President buttons in their junk drawers now. The man who actually blamed liberals for 9/11 (swear to god) has been sentenced to an eight-month stay in a halfway house, a $30,000 fine, five years probation, and 2080 hours of community service time for violating federal campaign finance laws.

The specific laws, prohibiting wealthy donors from laundering campaign contributions through third parties, also is not part of the Second Amendment so it’s no wonder D’Souza might have been unaware he was committing a felony. He’d recruited two people, an employee and the woman he was cheating on his wife with, to donate $10,000 each to an opponent of New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in the 2008 election. He made the arrangements with the promise to pay both people back, thereby skirting individual campaign donation limits.

D'Souza

D’Souza: Convict

Apparently, D’Souza viewed Gillibrand as the worst future senator the state of New York has ever had to endure. It’s interesting to note both Obama and Gillibrand are Right-leaning Centrists so imagine how felonious and canard-ing he’d be had he ever set his sights on a real Liberal.

I doubt his felony conviction and sentencing will sway the Wingnut Right away from loving him up. He is not, after all, a black man.

High School Hijinks

Have you seen the excerpts from the Twitter account of one of the nice little former Catholic school kids who beat a gay couple in Philly bloody not long ago? Alright, alright — allegedly.

What a pig.

What a gang of pigs. Apparently, the lot of them who’d attended the same high school had gotten together at a local restaurant for a sort of alumni dinner on September 11th. Afterward a dozen of them, well fortified with alcohol, went for a walk at which time the beating occurred. Attorneys for the three people charged so far say the gay couple attacked the group.

Which seems credible; the problem of gay couples attacking large groups of drunken homophobes is becoming epidemic these days.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 10.19.58 PM

Alumni Fun

Anyway, it seems this one accused gay-basher, a young woman who also happens to be the daughter of an area police chief, is obsessed with gays, dykes, and whiskey.

Let us hope and pray she eschews the use of contraceptives; otherwise her Catholic high school education would have been for naught.

The Real Sin

The whole Ray Rice kayo-ing his then-fiancé scandal produces more and more healthy piles of equine feces seemingly every day.

ESPN has suspended reporter/commentator Bill Simmons for his angry outburst condemning the NFL’s hypocritical stonewalling in the Rice case. Simmons now has three weeks to sit in a corner and ponder his no-no. That would be one week more than the suspension Ray Rice originally got from the NFL for clocking the love of his life.

Simmons — clearly a bad, bad man, worse, even, that a spousal abuser — is now, it is hoped, atoning from the bottom of his black heart.

Simmons

Bill Simmons: Reprobate

Here’s how the Washington Post describes Simmons’ mortal sin:

On Simmons’s podcast, “The B.S. Report,” which was posted on Monday, he launched into a profanity-laced tirade in which he repeatedly called Goodell a “liar.” That podcast appears to have been removed from ESPN’s Web site.

Goodell, of course, is NFL czar Roger Goodell, who for some six months really didn’t give a good goddamn about Rice’s criminal assault and battering upon his one and only and her subsequent involuntary snooze. It was only after security video of the incident was released this month that Goodell came to the realization that Rice’s wrist must be slapped harder.

ESPN and Grantland have removed the offending podcast because, god forbid, some little kid might hear it and conclude that Reichsmarschall Goodell is something less than a saint and a credit to his race. Also, Simmons drops the F-bomb twice which, as we all know, is ten jillion times worse than punching the woman you hope to spend the rest of your life with into unconsciousness.

It took a little digging but I did find audio of the podcast, via Business Insider. Here’s a taste in case you don’t feeling like listening to the whole thing:

I just think not enough is being made out of the fact that they knew about the tape and they knew what was on it. Goodell, if he didn’t know what was on that tape, he’s a liar. I’m just saying it. He is lying. I think that dude is lying. If you put him up on a lie detector test that guy would fail. For all these people to pretend they didn’t know is such fucking bullshit. It really is — it’s such fucking bullshit. And for him to go in that press conference and pretend otherwise, I was so insulted. I really was.

You see? What reasonable soul wouldn’t condone and forgive ten vicious beatings before that?

This whole thing is playing out like Watergate. You know, where the clueless bosses keep digging a deeper hole for themselves as each day passes. My guess is Goodell et al still don’t grasp how evil Rice’s act of knocking his fiancé into dreamland was.

Hot Air

Refreshed

So, yeah, I’ve taken the last few days off. Loyal Pencillistas have been wandering the streets in a daze, wondering what’s important in the world.

I needed a little time off because, frankly, I was tired of hearing my own voice. After nearly a week of sweet, sweet silence emanating from my normally clackety-clack keyboard, Pencillistas need fret no more; I’m back.

No. 1 No More

Dr. Ben Carson, who thinks this holy land is more than perfect except for all those Democrats and liberals running around in it, has occupied the No. 1 goddamned spot on the best selling hardcover nonfiction list the last few weeks. That is, at least according the New York York Times.

Only in the coming week will Carson be supplanted at the top of the list, by the guy who founded the XKCD website, Randall Munroe. The new No. 1 is Munroe’s What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions. (We in the book selling racket get advance peeks at the list.)

Speaking of absurd, let’s ponder the former No. 1 placeholder.

Book Cover

Ben Carson, as you may or may not know, is a rah-rah speaker for the Right and is being touted in some quarters as a potential candidate for President in 2016.

He’s one of those guys who look out their front door and say “Everything looks great in my neighborhood,” and then conclude anybody who’s complaining about their lot either hates America or is a bum.

Carson was the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital and professor of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He was a brilliant brain slicer (he retired in 2013) but he’s a tad ill-informed in certain other areas. For instance, he’s fairly certain Barack Obama is both a communist and a Nazi, he thinks America would have turned into Cuba were it not for Fox News and conservative talk radio, and he speaks loudly and forcefully about evolution despite not knowing much about it.

Here are a few Carson nuggets on evolution:

◆ [C]arbon dating and all of these things really don’t mean anything to a God who has the ability to create anything at any point in time. (Right Wing Watch)

◆ (People who believe in evolution) might have more difficulty deriving where their ethics come from, (as opposed to) “Those of us who believe in God and derive our sense of right and wrong and ethics from God’s word” (and who) “have no difficulty whatsoever defining where our ethics come from.” (Media Matters for America)

◆ I certainly believe in the biblical account of creation…. I believe that God is all powerful. He can do anything. So, if he can create a man who was fully mature, he can also create an Earth that is fully mature. (Faith & Liberty)

He also buys into the idea the Christians are a persecuted class in America. He says of his fellow religionists: “They’ve been bludgeoned into silence.”

And that, babies, is one of the bestselling nonfiction author in America.

The Beat Goes On

NFL players, of course, make their living assaulting and battering each other for the joy and pleasure of tens of thousands in the stands and tens of millions sitting before their flat screens.

It follows, then, that many NFL players employ their brutal talents in the areas of give and take with their true loves as well as the disciplining of their small children.

Houston PD

Adrian Peterson Allegedly “Switched” His 4-Year-Old Son

The scarring of one’s child still is considered acceptable in some quarters of this holy land. Many citizens have commented on the interwebs that it’s a damned shame a fellow cannot even spank his child anymore without being hauled in for fingerprints and a portrait. Now, I was never made aware that “spanking” necessarily resulted in abrasions, contusions, and blood, but what do I know? I have no children. (You’re welcome.)

I always figured the drawing of blood was the red line, as it were, that separated good, clean, wholesome child-beating from sadism. A parent, I learned a ways back when, had a responsibility to belt the bejesus out of his or her kid now and again, if only to keep in practice. Marks, blood splatters, or any other identifiable evidence of conscientious brutality were frowned upon.

Still, Minnesota Vikings star running back has garnered a degree of support from the free swingers of America.

Similarly, some have expressed support for Ray Rice. The erstwhile Baltimore Ravens star running clocked his beloved fiancé with such gusto last winter that he was compelled to drag her inert body out of the elevator in which he delivered the KO. One commentator of note who has not joined the tsk-ing chorus is Rush Limbaugh; in fact, Limbaugh decried the “feminizing” of our holy war AKA football after Rice was fired for allowing his roundhouse to be recorded.

That’s no surprise. What was shocking this past Sunday afternoon, however, was the presence of numerous females at the Baltimore Ravens game actually wearing Ray Rice jerseys.

Ravens Fan

Supporting The Ravens, The USA, And Domestic Violence

I’ll listen to arguments that the psychology of the victim of spousal abuse is so fercockt that one can’t expect her to easily exit her situation. No argument on this good Earth, though, can convince me that any female — nor, for that matter, any male — has a justification for wearing a Ray Rice jersey. It is, de facto, an asshole move.

As if all that’s not hive-inducing enough, word came this weekend that San Francisco 49ers radio announcer Ted Robinson was suspended for two games for criticizing Janay Rice. Robinson came down on her for not speaking up about the pounding she received from her then-fiancé as well as her subsequent decision to marry the man who separated her, admittedly temporarily, from consciousness. “That, to me. is the saddest part of it,” Robinson said on air a week ago yesterday.

Given that piling on Janay Rice is viewed as a personal foul by scads of folks in this USA, it still must be conceded that whatever Robinson said did not and could not harm her as much as Ray Rice’s fist that February night. Nevertheless, Robinson’s two-game jugging is precisely the penalty initially assessed against Rice when his battering of Janay became known six mos. ago. (Keep in mind it wasn’t until the NFL’s brand was sullied by the release of the video of the incident that Rice was given the axe. Punching the lights out of your beloved is nothing compared to harming the league’s image.)

So, acc’d’g to the NFL, Robinson is as big a creep as Ray Rice.

Wow.

If this puzzles you, let me explain. The powers that be in this great nation have little or no interest in improving the lot of any oppressed or persecuted minority. Any concessions to labor, blacks, Jews, Central American asylum seekers, battered women, Muslims, females in the workplace, or anyone else not endowed by god with power, privilege, a penis, and pale skin either have or will be made unwillingly and only after wrenching struggle. That, kiddies, is America.

What the Big Boys have given to the weak and wretched is control over language. So, if some slug on the assembly lines lets the N-bomb slip through his lips, he can expect to be punished within an inch of his professional life. But when corporate boardroom hoodlums make decisions to stymie the advance of any minority, well, by golly, how dare you want to interfere with their free market rights to run their outfits as they see fit?

Ray Rice knocked Janay Rice into brain trauma land. Ted Robinson said some words that may be offensive to someone, somewhere. To the NFL that’s as bad — correction, worse — than what Rice did.

And the NFL wants women to be happy about it.

Hot Air

This Must Stop

When do we stop treating grown women like children?

When do we stop making excuses for adults who make blatantly self-destructive decisions?

When do we stop men from beating up women?

All the above questions are tied together and only when we answer them — unemotionally, tactically, and strategically — will we make progress against the warthogs who slug people, specifically the women they purport to “love,”  into unconsciousness?

The general consensus is we should tread lightly upon the feelings of Janay Rice, the victim of a videotaped assault and battery in an elevator last February that left her unconscious and caused her fiancé to drag her like a sack of trash to their hotel room where who knows what ensued.

Rices

Newlyweds

Janay Rice has married that man in the intervening seven months. She told the world yesterday that she and Ray Rice share a special love, one that mean people are trying to destroy. Their method of destruction? Raising Cain about the beating and dragging incident that so far has earned Ray Rice a wink-and-a-nod plea deal wherein he must attend some kind of counseling sessions while avoiding jail time.

Janay Rice owes the girls and young women of this holy land a better course of action and narrative. There is only one proper and fitting reaction to Ray Rice’s assault upon her: that is criminal prosecution and Janay Rice’s firm commitment never to allow him within a thousand feet of her for the rest of their lives.

To wax poetic about their special love only ensures that more young women will be punched into a transient brain trauma — and worse.

Some say Janay Rice has suffered enough. She, apparently, does not share that opinion because she’s remaining intimate with the uncharged criminal who battered her.

Janay Rice doesn’t love herself enough, others say. To which I’d add she doesn’t give the slightest shit about the millions of females at risk of suffering a similar fate.

By staying with Ray Rice, by marrying him, by extolling their special love, she’s telling those millions of females that the crime he committed upon her is a blip, a hiccup, a silly little mistake, the kind we all must endure in the strange, confusing process of coupling. That, too, is a kind of crime.

Janay Rice didn’t ask for all this but reality has a fascist streak; it imposes upon us roles we have no desire to play. Reality jackbooted her that February night in the casino/hotel elevator. She no longer has a choice about being a spokeswoman for violent abuse. The incident became notorious solely because Ray Rice is good at running around with a football. Millions of impressionable young females are watching Janay Rice, taking cues from her.  She has told them that the ugly violence Ray Rice visited upon her not only is forgivable, it’s excusable, understandable, and even, she has implied, partially her fault.

I want Ray Rice to spend a good long time in jail. I want Janay Rice to stand up for herself and for countless girls and women.

And I’m tired of excuses. We all should be.

Hot Air

Cool

How do like sleeping with the windows open all night long these days?

Now we come into fall, perhaps the prettiest, most comfortable season of the year. Natch, I didn’t always feel this way. For the longest time, well into my adulthood, I dreaded the coming of September and October — that meant it was time for another school year. For an inveterate school-hater like me, the fall was a jail sentence.

Schoolroom

How Did I Survive This?

Anyway, the cool is fine by me at this advanced stage of my life. So cool was it yesterday AM that I spied one woman walking east on Kirkwood Avenue wearing a heavy fall coat and a scarf wrapped around her neck.

No, let me amend that — it wasn’t that cool yesterday morning. Politics, apparently, isn’t the only thing that causes people to overreact.

Patriot Games?

One of Bloomington’s most respected and beloved citizens has told me she was informed by her bank that the institution no longer wants her business.

Which seems odd, considering the fact that all sorts of reprobates and sociopaths are welcome to deposit their questionably-earned gains in banks from sea to shining sea. You may recall it took a federal statute to force banks to look into enormous deposits of cash. You know, the kinds of deposits drug kingpins make.

Cash

Another Day, Another….

In fact, it was only this past winter when JP Morgan Chase began asking people who wanted to make huge deposits for ID to make sure they were indeed account holders. JPM was forced to institute the new rule in the fallout from the Bernie Madoff affair. Spokesbeings for the bank said the rule was intended to weed out money launderers.

Nice of them. Of course, it took a US Justice Dept. investigation to get the Chase banksters to become such concerned citizens.

In any case, the Bloomington woman was phoned one recent morning by a rep from her __________ branch. She was told, after some hemming and hawing, “Your business is no longer welcome at __________.”

The woman says she’s been a customer of the same bank for at least 10 years. The bank was taken over first by another financial outfit and then by __________. The way the woman sees it, she should be considered a __________ customer for all those ten-plus years.

When the woman asked why __________ was doing this, she was told the Patriot Act was to blame. Or, at least, __________’s interpretation of same. The woman adds that all the __________ reps she spoke with (several people took the phone during the call in question) were “extremely apologetic.”

Bush Signing

George Bush Gleefully Signs The Patriot Act

Nevertheless, the woman was highly offended. One rep explained to her that because she was closely related to someone who “works for a foreign government” the bank could not longer do business with her under its own guidelines. The woman and her relative were natural-born citizens of a Middle Eastern nation. The woman has since become a naturalized American. “I’m not an Arab-American,” she says. “I’m an American.”

She may be an American, but she’s no longer a  __________ customer.

[MG note: I will not identify the woman or the bank until I hear back from the bank.]

This Bloomington woman’s story comes at a time when Arab-Americans across this holy land are being given the bum’s rush by their banks. At least she got something of an answer when she asked why. Acc’d’g to a story in the LA Times, most Arab-Americans being told their accounts are being closed are given no reason at all.

I’ll continue digging into this story. Stay tuned.

Black Eye

You wanna get even madder?

Okay. The National Football League didn’t give former Baltimore Ravens Ray Rice a lengthy suspension for punching his then-fiancé into unconsciousness until after video of the incident was uncovered by the gossip site TMZ.

[I’m not going to provide a link to the TMZ story because I don’t believe disseminating the video serves any purpose other than to hurt the victim again.]

NFL czar Roger Goodell had suspended Rice for two games after the incident first was reported. The video was revealed the other day. Suddenly, Rice’s two-gamer has become an indefinite lay-off.

Rice

This Man Punched His Fiancé Into Unconsciousness

In other words, it’s sorta bad for an NFL player to punch the shit out of his beloved. It’s super bad if the act is caught on video.

Rice, BTW, has been fired by the Baltimore Ravens. Again, the team took no action against him even after he made a plea agreement with prosecutors over the incident. The Ravens acted only when they were embarrassed by the video.

More BTW: Let’s talk punches. It takes a monster blow to induce unconsciousness, despite what you think you’ve learned watching the movies or TV. Unconsciousness resulting from a blow generally occurs when the brain stem or the spinal cord near it are twisted or impacted. Such twisting occurs when the puncher delivers a roundhouse, forcing the recipient’s head to turn violently and suddenly. The impact trauma can occur when the inion, a small projection at the base of the rear of the skull, collides with the spinal cord, again due to a blow that causes sudden head rotation.

This is why boxers are taught to grit their teeth when they’re punched and why they work so hard to develop strong neck muscles. The idea is to resist the rotational forces of the cross punch.

So, Ray Rice didn’t merely jab at his fiancé’s face when he struck her in that casino elevator last February. He swung a roundhouse. He wanted to cause damage to her. He belongs in prison.

As for his then-fiancé — she is now married to him. She belongs on a psychiatrist’s couch.

Roger Goodell and the top officials of the Baltimore Ravens? They belong in hell.

Union, Yes

WFIU is reporting that Bloomingfoods employees are considering unionizing.

Bloomingfoods

All I can say is, Yay!

Hot Air

What’s Important

Thursday night, some 32 million Americans watched a sporting event.

No, it wasn’t a game to decide the championship of a big pro sports league. Nor was it any contest at all between a couple of teams.

2014 NFL Draft Set

The Holy Altar

It was, in fact, the goddamned National Football League draft. That’s the yearly process by which the 32 teams of the planet’s most financially successful athletic outfit divvy up the latest pool of talent to emerge from the college ranks. General managers, talent coordinators, coaches and other swamis and gurus study the omens, signs, and symbols and then proceed to tab some 224 slabs of cartilage and sinew who will, it is hoped, lead their teams to Super Bowl glory.

And one in 10 human beings residing in this holy land watched said sacred rite.

We are, comrade Pencillistas, a deranged freakin’ nation.

Parking Perspective

Still steamed about Bloomington’s downtown parking meters?

Perhaps this’ll make you feel a tad better about it all:

NUMH Parking

Yep, these are the rates you’ll pay if you want to visit your sick old grandma at Chicago’s Northwestern Memorial Hospital in the city’s Streeterville neighborhood.

Admittedly, Streeterville — AKA the Gold Coast — is Chi-town’s most ritzy ‘hood. It’s where, for instance, notables and plutocrats such as Ann Landers, Oprah Winfrey, and the Pritzkers have lived through the years.

Still, $11.00 for a 45-minute drop-in on Bubeh? Or, should your Nonna not be clinging to life in one of Northwestern’s luxe suites, and instead you desire to grab a lunch at Gino’s East on Superior Street, you’ll end up paying $32 just to stash your dilapidated Corolla. Which is prob. more than the beater is worth.

Makes a buck an hour seem a bargain, no?

Truth? Bah!

Buzzfeed’s Andrew Kaczynski found this gem of a “quote” attributed to Prez Barack H. O. in a mailer sent out by the National Association for Gun Rights to benefit Libertarian loon Rand Paul:

Gun Bullshit

Q: So, like, when did BHO say this remarkable thing?

A: Never.

Here’s what the Nazi/commie/Stalinist/abortionist/gay sex tyrant actually said, back in December, 2012, after the Sandy Hook School shooting rampage in Newtown, Connecticut, that resulted in the deaths of 20 kids and 6 adults:

In the coming weeks, I’ll use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens — from law enforcement, to mental health professionals, to parents and educators — in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this, because what choice do we have? We can’t accept events like this as routine.

Same thing right?

The New Version

After perusing a few gun rights web sites I feel I have a greater understanding of that landmark document, the Constitution of the United States of America. As a public service, I thought I’d write a new version of it, just like the Christianists do with their Bible on occasion. Here’s The Constitution, Glock Version, 2014:

Article I: We the People are nothing without Guns.

Amendment 2: Blah, blah, blah, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Other ideas, powers, and rights: Nothing really.

Signed,

Jesus Christ and George Washington

Politics, my friends, can be so simple.

Jesus Gun

Your Daily Hot Air

Silly Stuff

Recently, I took a couple of those silly BuzzFeed quizzes that supposedly tell you all about yourself. One was What Career Should You Actually Have? and the other was How Much of an Asshole Are You?

The conclusions? I should have been a professor and I am not an asshole at all.

From "The Nutty Professor"

Who, Me?

Jeez, what a load of horseshit!

Meter Mad

A hot Bloomington tomato named Candy Allday found herself in Oak Park, Illinois, this past week. She stopped at a Mexican restaurant with her ever-lovin’ husband and a couple of friends late-ish one evening.

Candy Allday is used to feeding B-town parking meters until the ungodly hour of 10pm, so she began digging in her purse for quarters before entering said eatery. Lo and behold, she stopped and gasped.

“I’ve gotta take a picture of this,” she blurted. And so she did. And here it is.

Photo by Candy Allday

Candy Allday wonders if certain Bloomington City Council-folk can read.

Let’s Dance

Bloomington’s own Brynda Forgas is no longer owned by her business, The Hidden Closet. After a long stay in the Fountain Square Mall, Forgas moved her Closet to Kirkwood Avenue, right behind the Book Corner last year. Biz was no better on Kirkwood than it had been in the relatively quiet mall.

So Brynda decided to call it a retail career a couple of months ago and announced she’d be locking the door one final time as soon as the Christmas season was over. She’s never looked happier.

An old pal of hers, Paula Chambers is set to open her own shop, The Dance Circus, in Brynda’s old space Tuesday, February 4. Paula’s another Bloomington fixture. She’s the boss of the Hudsucker Posse hula hoop girl gang. She, too, is moving her digs out of Fountain Square.

Dance Circus

The Dance Circus will continue to feature scads of dancewear and shoes, hula hoops (all handmade), and plenty of other fun stuff.

Chambers hopes to get better exposure and foot traffic for her store in the new location. She’s pumped. “I’m gonna make a splash on Kirkwood,” she promises.

Go visit Paula. And spend some cash, wouldja?

… And The Blacks Were Happy Under Slavery

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell gave the assembled news media of the world a state of the league address last week in advance of yesterday’s Super Bowl. Then he opened the floor for questions. One intrepid reporter asked him about the Washington club’s nickname, you know the one that’s a racial slur. Goodell pulled a Vinnie Barbarino and said, essentially, Whuh?

Pushed further, he elaborated. Why, he claimed, the folks we’re slurring consider it no slur at all!

Do you believe it?

Screenshot from Bleacher Report

I sure as hell don’t.

No, Really, Let’s Dance

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