Monday, October 31, 2011

The Seeds of Halloween

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

It's Halloween. Or in my neck of the woods... Halloweed or even Halliween.

This is my first Halloween in San Francisco. My gay friends often tell me that Halloween is "Christmas for gays." It's their favorite time of year. I'm told it's an insane scene up in the Castro tonight, but I'm not going to check it out because I'm a degenerate gambler and Monday night is poker night at my place aka the Ice Palace. Besides, I'm not gay... "not that there's anything wrong with that."

When I lived in NYC, I checked out the Halloween parade in the West Village, which had it's fair share of freaks and costumes (on both straights and gays) that make folks on the religious right wash their eyeballs out with holy water. I can only imagine what Halloween is like in San Francisco, but even Nicky and Halli are skipping out on "Gay Christmas" to play cards because the Castro gets way to crowded and insane these days.

Adults treat Halloween in two ways -- trying to recapture innocent moments of childhood, or they tweak it completely as a holiday to indulge in sex and booze. Hence why so many people get shitfaced on Halloween and girls walk around in the sluttiest costumes imaginable. Just add "slut" to it and you have a costume. Yesterday, I even saw a photo of "Slutty Hitler." Even that left me speechless.

October 31st is the one time of year when "society" doesn't judge you, so folks take advantage of the lax "morality" rules, and they do as they please. And if by chance you have an opportunity to indulge in psychedelics tonight -- then go for it. Everything is so fucking trippy on Halloween anyway, so you might as well melt your mind and cross over to the other side of reality. If you see any aliens, make sure you say hello.

Damn, what happened to Halloween?

As per usual, a religious holiday (All Saints Day) got hijacked by the occultists to do freaky shit the night before, then the holiday got tweaked by big business and re-branded by a bunch of gin-giuzzling Don Drapers as an opportunity to sell candy. Somewhere along the way, the holiday for rogue Jesus freaks and kids, morphed into an evening for adults to purge all psychological demons.

Whatever your poison? Get wasted. Queer it up. Dress like a slut. Yeah, Halloween is a pretty crazy evening any way you cut it.

Speaking of cutting it... I was a kid in the early 1980s, there's was always a tinge of paranoia centered around acquiring tainted candy during the trick-o-treating rounds. I guess that's my first bout with fear mongering. The press actually had some semblance of integrity thirty years ago, but many of the news stations and newspapers ran stories about urban myths. It seemed like once a year, they recycled slanted news articles about razor blades in apples and other jagged things inserted into candy bars. That paranoia quickly spread in our neck of the woods and definitely put a wrinkle in a super fun holiday. I remember one doctor's office even offered kids free x-rays of sacks of candy to make sure the goodies were metal free.

Pretty crazy shit, eh? When you're seven years old and have to smush a Mounds bar to make sure there's no razor blades in it before you eat it, at some point you're going to be just a wee bit paranoid as an adult. Ah, now you see the origins of a fear monger? That's how I got my start and the seeds for the Tao of Fear were planted.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Why Occupy? Here's Four Reasons...

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

What is Occupy Wall Street? Why should I care? This video explains four reasons why you should support Occupy Wall Street...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Dead Flowers - Townes Van Zandt

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Speaking of Sticky Fingers, I stumbled upon this soulful cover of Dead Flowers. TVZ's voice reminds me of a our wounded, debt-riddled nation with "cocaine eyes"...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

About Those Fifteen Minutes of Fame...

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Which docu-reality TV show will you eventually be on sometime in the future?
A) Hoarders
B) Biggest Loser
C) Intervention
D) Locked Up Abroad

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Karl Denson and Sticky Fingers

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Karl Denson's Tiny Universe arrived in San Francisco for a two night run at the Independent. The Independent is one of three popular venues that is less than a 15-minute walk from my apartment in Lower Pacific Heights (the Boom Boom Room and the Fillmore are the other two). So, Nicky and I were eager to see a show so close by without having to worry about buzzed driving and finding a parking space. One of the primary reasons we moved to San Francisco was to soak up the juicy music scene -- especially shows within walking distance from our couch. Last weekend we caught Denver's own Juno What at the Boom Boom Room, and this weekend we were pumped to catch a special performance from Karl Denson.

Denson is doing a little something different and very ambitious this tour by covering the entire Sticky Fingers album by the Rolling Stones. His first set is devote to all ten songs, while the second set is regular Karl Denson tunes. During this stretch he has Anders Osbourne sitting in on vocals and lead guitar. The Scandi wook's own rock band opened up for KDTU this tour.

Both shows in San Francisco were sold out. The Independent was super packed with a smattering of hipsters and the usual assortment of neo-hippie types. I had an extra ticket and sold it to a kid a few bucks below face. He showed up at 6:30 hoping to buy one at the box office, but got shut out. He tried to find one for almost four hours on the street in front of the venue -- and came up empty -- until I hooked him up.

Karl doubled on vocals and sax. He opened up the Sticky Fingers' set proclaiming, "This song is about interracial sex!" Then the band launched into an ass-shaking Brown Sugar.

The soused crowd sang along the loudest during Wild Horses. The highlight of the set (and from the "A" side was a smoking Can You Hear Me Knocking. I've heard Trey and Phish tease the ending too many times to count. My only complaint was that I wish Karl and company jammed it out more.

Nicky thought Denson's rendition of Bitch was the highlight of the "B" side of the original album. The jamming apex occurred during a faded-version of Sister Morphine. The dissonant trumpet/sax jamming almost made it feel like I was schwasted on pharmies. Anders jammed out so hard during Morphine that he had to change his shirt after the song.

Crowd definitely perked up for Flowers, and a sultry Moonlight Mile closed the Sticky Fingers set.

Karl Denson is playing again on Saturday, but that show is also sold out. He's heading down to Chico on Sunday then off to Colorado to play gigs in Boulder, Telluride, and Denver. This tour's big moment is the Halloween gig in Denver when KDTU is playing a special themed show -- Halloween 1971. Denson is going way back forty years to perform Sticky Fingers, while local power trio Rose Hill Drive will tackle The Who's "Who's Next." Anders Osbourne is also opening up and will be sitting in with Karl for the Sticky Fingers set.

If you get a chance, check out the Karl's Sticky Fingers project.

* * *

This version of Bitch was not from the SF show, but from last week's gig at the HoB in Hollywood. As soon as find any vids from the Independent, I'll post it here...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

I Didn't Know That I Was That Far Gone...

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Thanks to the Joker for reminding me something very enlightening...

Economic Collapse: Why It Won't Be Stopped

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Thanks to the Joker for pointing this video out. The collapse is nigh. Brace yourselves.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

OccupySF Protest March from Fed Reserve Bank to City Hall

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Here's a video I shot during #OccupySF #O15 protest march in San Francisco from the front of the S.F. b branch of the Federal Reserve to Union Square and then all the way to City Hall.

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Difference Between Hope and Occupy

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

What a difference three years makes, eh?

Nothing has "changed" since Shepard Fairey introduced the campaign sign that invigorated a nation and gave the world a glimmer of hope. Yes, nothing has changed. The system, the machine, the Matrix -- whatever you want to call it -- is the same. It's still broken. We can't fix it. The only way to make it work is to bring down the whole fucking thing.



I'm not going to piss on Obama, because I saw him for what he was -- a puppet -- just like every one before him. Obama was a pawn for Wall Street and big business from the get go. I saw right through the charade. I didn't vote for him. I have never voted for anyone representing the two-party system. Republican. Democrats. Repubocrat. Demlican. Same suit, different color tie.

I wanted a radical change in 2008, so I voted for a black woman -- Cynthia McKinney. Yeah, I bet you didn't know that a black woman ran for President in 2008 because the MSM focused on Obama mania and the maelstrom surrounding Sarah Palin's addition to the GOP ticket. McKinney, had she been elected, would've shaken the system to the core including ending the war in Iraq and auditing the Federal Reserve Bank, which has never been audited by the government. Alas, if anyone steps into the White House they know what will happen to them if they cross the folks who put them in power. That reminds me of an old comedy bit from Bill Hicks -- that after the President gets elected, on the first day he moves into the White House, they show him the Zapruder film of JFK getting his head blown up. The threat of you or family being used a target for shooting practice is enough to convince any person to fuck over the American people.

Not too many Americans (even the ones who voted) knew anything about Cynthia McKinney and her platform because the power brokers (the MSM's overlords) do not like the press shining any light on third party candidates, or anything outside the realm of the two-party system. You can't let the sheeple get used to multiple choices, then they'll demand more and more, which in the end means fewer profits for the elites in power.

How come you can order happy meals at McDonald's in three different sizes, yet in politics you have only two?

Your choices are Coke or Pepsi and that's it. But, I never liked soda. I'm an iced tea kinda guy. Big Ass Iced Tea, which is a code for Jeffersonian Anarchist. Thomas Jefferson believed in revolutions every seven years because he felt that anyone (person or institution) in power longer than seven years would become corrupted.

Is anyone else insulted that the United States of 300 million Americans and 12 million illegals live under the illusion of democracy? Because our political needs are met by either the guy on the right, or the guy on the left. If you live in a blue state, you vote for the man in blue. If you're red, you vote for the man in red. Divisive politics. Divide and conquer. Everyone took the bait. Blame the other side while the folks behind the curtain are tugging at the strings controlling the puppets in Washington.

Your choices at the polls are limited to two choices. Red or Blue and that's it. So much for a multi-colored world resembling the Crayola box. And if any third party candidate, like Ralph Nader in 2000, started to appeal to the masses and gain any sort of momentum, the establishment went out of their way to trash him, undermine his platform, or spin some other nonsense using the long, slithery tentacles of the big business-controlled MSM.

"Oh, you voted for Ralph Nader in 2000? You're the asshole who cost Al Gore the election."

You have no idea how many sheeple tried to shove that piece of brainwashed rhetoric down my throat. Um, no my darling, Moonbeam, I didn't cost Al Gore the election. You should blame his inept, out-of-touch campaign staff, or better yet, join the tin-foil hat wearing crowd and pass blame on the Bush Junta for stealing the election in one of the most crooked states in the union -- Florida -- where his brother just happened to be the governor.

At that point during the height of the hanging chad debacle at the end of 2000, I gave up on politics altogether. Sheeple don't want real change, otherwise they would have started a revolution years ago. At this juncture, it's too painful to accept the fact that your entire world view is wrong and you were duped, because everything you've been taught is not quite right because the fix was in before you even woke up in the morning. And even more depressing is the fact when you learn that George Orwell was right in his book Animal Farm... that we're just pigs waiting to be slaughtered.

Simply put, it's easier to ignore reality than to deal with it, or better yet, view reality through the distorted lens of the media (both lefty liberal and righty conservative). But for the angry unemployed, upset masses and anti-war protesters, Obama came along and appeared to be the antidote to all of their problems. He wasn't the almighty cure and instead, everyone swallowed the Kool-Aid, which bought some sinister fuckers in pinstripes more time to finish fleecing America before they ran out the back door with your money. Now those slimy fuckers on Wall Street are railing foot-long lines of the finest cocaine on yachts the size of Walmart somewhere in the Caribbean, and laughing their asses off as they burn your money on fire to light a cigarette for a $2,000/hour, Eastern European call girl.

Obama unleashed a riveting and sensational speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention (a post modern version of speeches ripped right out of Bobby Kennedy's playbook) and from that point on, Obama was being primed for the Savior. The Great Black Hope. Obama embarked on a run for the White House in 2008 because he had millions of Americans desperate for change literally eating out of his palms. They were hopeless souls seeking hope in a hopeless world. Throw in a clever social media campaign (via Facebook appealing to sheeple, and Twitter appealing to tech geeks and hipsters) and a piece of Shepard Fairey's art work that will always be synonymous with Barack Obama, and you have the recipe of a powerful mind control campaign.

The "hope" and "change" buzzwords blinded the truths hidden in plain sight. You should have known Obama's backers were planning a "smash and grab" job the moment he started naming his cabinet -- a transition team of former Wall Street execs -- many of them were former employees or represented the evil empire of Goldman Sachs (whom Matt Taibbi referred to as "vampire squids"). Obama's cabinet choices should have tipped off his hand that his government will cover up the 2008 financial crisis.

Obama's backers pulled off a well-timed financial coup and successfully duped Americans, just like so many of them were hoodwinked on the war on terror during Bush 2.0. Let's not forget that we should have heard the drums of war beating in the background when Bush 2.0 assembled his team -- spearheaded by Dick Cheney (aka the Cigarette Smoking Man) and Donald Rumsfield. Bush 1.0 and his cronies from the Carlyle Group were calling the shots using Bush 2.0 as their bungling puppet, and they carefully selected well-known war hawks, energy/oil execs, and members of the military industrial complex to be the backbone Bush 2.0's cabinet/cabal/inner circle. Before he moved into the White House after winning the 2000 election, the Bush Junta was primed for war.

In 2008, in the weeks leading up to the election, millions of Americans were ensconced in Obama mania, which was a well-timed distraction from the financial pillaging of America's coffers. Billions and billions in bailouts were given to degenerate gamblers at big banks, brokerage houses, and insurance companies. Anyone deemed "too big to fail" was bailed out by the federal government. It took three years for the masses to wake up to the largest theft in the history of the world, but I'm glad they finally did.

Occupy Wall Street sprang up last month. That's the name of the movement. It has a Facebook page and a twitter hash tag (I've been using #OWS but there's also #OccupyWallStreet). Don't be confused with the label. What you're seeing is the Revolution.

It's here. What are you going to do about it? Join in, fight it, but do something. Please don't keep your head in the sand any longer.

The powers brokers controlling the media want you to think this revolution was an impulsive act by a bunch of dirty hippies drugged out of their minds who decided to camp out down on Wall Street and whine about not having jobs. And if the protests ended after a few days, the MSM would have succeeded in spinning the real reason people were so pissed off. But, their plan to demonize protesters with condescending labels backfired. It's been four weeks now, the protests spread across the country, and the protesters are not going anywhere. This really isn't about Occupying Wall Street or being anti-corporations or against Big Business. This is a revolution. This is the Revolution.

If you're still confused about what's going on, then please read this: graphs and pie charts showing what people are so pissed off about.

The Revolution is here and the MSM doesn't get what Occupy Wall Street is all about, which is part of the reason they don't want you to know about it. It started in Zuccotti Park and has spread across the country. It took almost a month before it's flared up across the world.

The MSM is trying to hide the revolution from you. Why? Because those who own MSM outlets don't want themselves, their golf buddies or Ivy League classmates to be lynched by angry mobs, which will have it beamed live around the world via live webcams (like Global Revolution). The protesters are just like you and me. Some of them have long hair. Some of them are bald. Some of them have jobs. Some of them are from the Right and some are original Tea Party patriots. Some of them are veterans from Iraq. Some of them, like me, used to work on Wall Street. We all know the system is broken and Obama will never help us (in fact he's ignoring the revolution), so the only way to bring on change... is to create change ourselves.

The movement wants the power to return back to the people and take it away from a small group of mega-wealthy corporations and powerful families. It's about reinstating the rules to the game to make it more fair, instead of all of us having zero semblance of hope playing in a rigged game.

Life is rigged. Wall Street is rigged. What are you going to do about it?

This isn't a political issue. It's not about red or blue. Or right or left. The folks in power are getting super desperate and will try to turn us against each other. It's a cheap tactic that has been effective for centuries. Divide and conquer. Please, don't fall for it. We're all in this together. One of the most amazing things I've seen about Occupy Wall Street is that it's brought citizens from both sides of the spectrum together in a united front. That scares the shit out of the power base. They maintain power as long as every one is distracted while squabbling over "hot button" issues like abortion and gays in the military.

This revolution is about the haves versus the have nots. If you're reading this, you're a "have not" or in other numbers -- you're a member the 99% against the 1% that control the majority of the wealth. I hate to bust your bubble if you think you're one of the "haves"... because you're definitely not. I actually feel sorry for you if you do. The saddest cases are the ones who think they are "haves," yet they are blindly being used to do the dirty work for the "haves" by suppressing accurate reporting of the revolution.

Read this independent report of Occupy Wall Street (posted last week). That's one of the best pieces of journalism I've seen about the protests.

And kudos to the gang at Mother Jones (and @MotherJones on Twitter). They lived up to their billing as "smart, fearless journalism", meanwhile the titans of the MSM completely ignored, downplayed, or tweaked the real story -- including the so-called liberal outlets like the NY Times and MSNBC. Let's not forget their corporate overlords are a part of the establishment that the revolutionaries want to bring down.

Tomorrow marks the beginning of the fifth week of the Occupy Wall Street protests in Zuccotti Park down in Lower Manhattan. Who would've thought three years ago when you saw the original Obama "hope" poster, that the entire world would be on the brink of global economic collapse and the country was on the cusp of a civil war?

Educate yourselves. Do your own research. Stop watching Snooki and start reading books like Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History, or watch a documentary film about the financial crisis like Inside Job, or Meltdown.

And if you've been aimless and wandering around without any direction, well then, there's a good cause out there that needs your help.

This is your wake up call. Time to bring America back to the people.

* * *

Important Video Links:
What is Inflation and Stagflation?
What Is the Federal Reserve?
The Economic Collapse: Why It Won't Be Stopped
The Story of Your Enslavement

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Beer-Dinking Rednecks and Pill-Popping Managers

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

I first saw the story when Eric W., a friend from Maine who was a Red Sox fan since the moment of conception, had tweet'd the article about the Red Sox late season collapse. A couple of hours later, StB sent out the article to the NYC sports email thread. I re-read it a second time and fired off an email about it before my CrackBerry shit the bed.

The article had everything you expected in an expose pandering to Red Sox Nation, millions of blood-thirsty New Englanders seeking someone to lynch including spoiled players, veteran superstars lacking leadership abilities, drunken pitchers playing video games during games, and even a pill popping manager. Shit, although this is a tragedy, just tweak the script a little to make it a comedy, and you have an awesome plot for Major League 4.

Anyway, here's my 8 initial thoughts about the article describing the Red Sox collopase...
1. Red Sox manager Terry Francona is a drug addict after getting hooked on pharmies as a result of multiple knee surgeries. His crazy wife kicked him out of their Brookline, MA home when she got sick of him nodding out on the couch while giving mock press conferences to Boston Globe writers in their bedroom closet. And the powers that be say marijuana is bad.

2. Francona had troubles motivating his players because he was distracted with his son, a U.S. marine deployed in Afghanistan. Cue "Cats in the Cradle."

3. Even a gift like $300 headphones won't solve a chemistry problem. Inviting jaded players to hang out on a billionaire's yacht causes a deeper disconnect from reality.

4. Sox starting pitchers are spoiled, lazy rednecks who prefer to hang out in the locker room to drink beer, chow down on fried chicken and play video games than act like a loyal teammate and sit in the dugout and clap whenever Dustin Pedroia legs out a double.

5. Baseball is a game of stats. If a 45-year old Tim Wakefield wants to break Cy Young's and Roger Clemens' records, then let him do it instead of a Yankees-defector like the juice-riddled Rocketman who "misremembers" if he took roids or not. Shit, anytime you have a shot at breaking a record held by Cy Fucking Young, you have to give a man a chance, even if he's a stat-centric, vain, perverted knuckleballer.

6. Kevin Youklis is old school and plays hurt. But, Youk was pissed that he played through all kinds of pain while redneck pitchers ate fried chicken, drank beer and played video games in the clubhouse.

7. Crawford, Lackey and Jenks were overpaid busts. Players resented that the richest starting pitcher(s) on the team sat around playing video game with fried chicken-eating and beer guzzling rednecks.

8. Some players are acting like spoiled children because their parents (Sox owners) are more concerned with megabuck deals with big media conglomerates and expanding their empire to Europe, where the #1 sport is long-haired hippies and Brazilians with first names kicking around a large spherical object into a net, while a coked-up Mexican announcer screams "Goooooooooooooooooooooal."
Read the original article here.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Twisted World of Ikea - The Video

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Y'all know my disdain for all things Ikea.... disposable Swedish-designed furniture, manufactured in China out of faux-wood, then shipped to the US with instructions in Spanish, for the Mexican day workers who assemble shelving units for baffled and confused suburbanites, who'd rather not bother with the trouble of wasting 18 hours trying to put together a $19 piece of furniture, so they spend $25 to hire a day laborer loitering around the parking lot of Ikea mega-stores.

You should read something I wrote called Ikeaphobia.

And here's the video about the evil and twisted world of Ikea that gives me nightmares....

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Reverse Reality Theory

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

I have a theory called Reverse Reality: real life and the dream state are actually reversed.

Conscious reality is when you're dreaming/sleeping, while your waking state is actually the construct of the subconscious. Therefore, what we think is real life is similar to a Matrix-type scenario, in which we're trapped in the fabricated reality, which we perceive to be "real life." When we're "sleeping" we're accessing what you would consider the dream world, which according to my reverse theory, is the actual "reality." Our dream state is part of a collective subconscious that everyone in the universe is connected to -- consciously.

To further the insanity of the Reverse Reality Theory, someone like myself with insomnia is imprisoned to live in the waking world for 20+ hours a day, even more.

Sounds like a Philip K. Dick short story -- reverse reality when troublemakers are sentenced to 23 hours a day imprisonment of a "waking state" which means that the only respite is an hour of slumber where you get to leap back into the collective subconscious, before you're zapped back into the horrors of living in the waking reality -- false gods, jackhammers, Snooki, famine, corruption, and the other horrors of the world.

A thought to ponder.

Monday, October 10, 2011

5 Things... In My Refrigerator

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Yeah, so here's five random things, three of which are rather strange, that is currently in my refrigerator. Can you guess which one is mine?

So have you figured out which one is mine?

Here's the skinny...
1. Mexican Sprite: At first glance it looks like an ordinary Sprite, but upon closer inspection it's a Sprite bottled in Mexico. That means real sugar. I rarely drink soda, but I like the way Sprite tastes out of bottles. I guess this was a quirky impulse buy that I acquired from living in SoCal -- every once in a while, I'd grab a Mexican Sprite whenever I happened to see one sold at a random gas station or 7/11. Yes, this is the only item pictured that is mine.

2. Prosciutto: There's Canadian Bacon, then there's Canadian prosciutto -- which is way more polite and funnier. Nicky picked this up for me.

3. Random Pill Bottle: This is a wet dream for many of you junkies reading this post. An unknown bottle with a dozen white pills. It could be anything. Uppers. Downers. Sideways. Happy Pill. Sleeping Pill. Allergy pill. Painkiller. The possibilities were endless. As much as you think it's mine --- it's not. It's been in the fridge since Nicky and I moved in. And no, I haven't sampled the pill... yet. I don't think Halli knows who it belongs to or where it came from either. Behold... the mystery pills. We should have a mystery pill themed party on Halloween.

4 and 5. Celery Soda and Vegan Mayonnaise: Two for one deal with the last photo. Both items were next to each other on the door shelf.

I'm assuming the vegan mayo is Halli's. I would never touch the atrocity. What's the point of making mayo if it's vegan style? Mayo is supposed to bad for you. Why try to make it out of healthy things?

The Celery soda is totally random and something I never knew existed before last Monday. It's not mine, nor Nicky's, not Halli. Skye picked it up from a local liquor store, thinking it was a bottle of ginger ale -- which looked very similar in color. Once the mistake was realized, it was too late and we inherited the mistaken celery soda. Oh, and I wouldn't drink any of it for less than $300. It's friggin' disgusting.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

The Best of Omar

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

All in the Game is an awesome interview with the actor who plays Omar from The Wire (and currently plays Chalky White in Empire Boardwalk).

Here's a video with some of the best clips of The Wire featuring Omar...

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Octopi Wall Street

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Check out this article from Mother Jones.... Octopi Wall Street. It's inspired by Matt Taibbi's usage of "vampire squids" to describe Goldman Sachs. The gang at MJ were inspired by the usage of the octopus and squid in American history to describe evil doers like railroad barons and monopolists of the 19th century.

By the way, if you haven't read Taibbi's book Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History... then what are you waiting for?

And yes, for more information on locations of Occupy Wall Street inspired protests in your neck of the woods, check out this Occupy protest map that MJ put together.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Endnotes with David Foster Wallace

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

I stumbled upon this BBC (radio) documentary about David Foster Wallace...

I almost felt the urge to re-read all of Infinite Jest... almost!

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Flamed by Lady Gaga Sheeple

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

I got a couple of pieces of hysterical hate mail because of something I wrote about Lady Gaga. I mean, really? Lady fucking Gaga? With all the craziness going on in the world, I expect I'd get slammed for some of my anarchist political views, but then again sheeple ignore anything political unless it involved a Presidential election, however, the moment you rock their boat with blasphemy about Lady Gaga, they get their panties in a twist, or a little sand in the vag, or a baseball bat logged up their anal tract... all over this throw-away article I wrote while crocked to the tits on painkillers.... Lady Gaga the Illuminati Puppet.

For fuck's sake. Lighten up, folks. Lady Gaga is not the savior, unless she can figure out how to bail out Greece and end our multi-trillion dollar deficit.

Never underestimate the stupidity of sheeple. Baaaa.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Superstitions and River Rats

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

I'm always afraid to write about baseball because I don't want to be a jinx. No one wants to be a jinx and become a social outcast and pariah, like the weird kid in grammar school who everyone avoided at lunch time because he smelled like cat piss.

Baseball is a game wrapped in superstitions and rituals. Wade Boggs ate fried chicken before every game and if he didn't he was doomed to go 0-5, so he made sure he ate fried chicken -- no matter what. During winning streaks, players won't wash their uniforms or socks. Players won't step on the foul lines when running off the field. And everyone in the dugout doesn't even talk about or recognize a no-hitter when it's happening.

Superstitions are utterly stupid, because once you give in to a superstition, your life becomes ruined because you become enslaved by your biggest fears of breaking whatever ritual you created to make yourself feel less anxious. Yet, I only adhere to one -- I never carry around $50 bills. Grubby told me about it in 2004 when I first got into playing poker in casinos. Since then I refuse to touch $50s and if one crosses my path, I get rid of it as soon as possible.

I used to have another ritual which occurred whenever I traveled. A quick backstory -- I have a recurring nightmare that I die in a plane crash -- so, to assuage my fears, I rap my closed right hand on the outside of the plane just above the doorway before I enter the plane and I'm greeted by the flight attendants. I dunno when that ritual started, but I stopped doing it a couple of years ago. So if/when I die in a plane crash, I don't want that added extra pressure following me into the afterlife because I didn't quell any superstitions before I stepped onto the plane.

I'm supposed to smart enough to know that whatever I do will alter the future, as much as I'd like to think I can affect the outcome of a game or prevent a plane crash. Even though I know my actions, like writing about the Yankees on my blog, won't affect the game, I have been silent for a few weeks because I don't want to be bogged down with guilt that I jinxed the Yanks. No one wants to be a jinx.

Yeah, I won't adhere to any sports-related superstitions, yet I still wear my Yankees visor backwards when they're in desperate need of a hit. Some habits never die, even if it's a silly superstition. Then again rally hats are waaaaaaay more inventive than that fucking insane Rally Monkey that the L.A. Angels of Anaheim uses to fire up the crowd.

As much as I usually don't give a shit what people think about me, I hate to be known as a jinx among my sporting peers, because some of the most random people are slaves to superstitions, especially die-hard sports fans.

There are some personal exceptions because I get more and more superstitious and intense whenever there's large sums of money on the line. Take this summer for example -- I was working in Las Vegas during the NBA playoffs leading up to the Finals against Miami. I had bet big on the Dallas Mavericks to win the entire Championship along with individual bets on each game they played en route to the title. I was kinda forced to watched one game with AlCantHang at McFadden's Pub (formerly the Tilted Kilt) inside the Rio Casino. I never go to that joint anymore, yet we had to watch the game there due to lack of space in the sportsbook and adjoining bar, which were packed with fans and bettors. Alas, I went to the pub with Al because we had no other alternative... yadda, yadda, yadda.... the Dallas Mavs came from behind in one of the most exhilarating games I had seen in a very long time to cover the spread. I made a lot of coin that day and a new superstition was born. For the rest of the series, I wanted to watch every game with Al at McFadden's.

Sweating the NBA playoffs at McFadden's
with AlCantHang and Michele (aka the Cougar)

The one time we broke the streak and skipped McFadden's, the Mavs didn't cover (incidentally, when I watched Game 7 of the NHL playoffs with my colleague Lance, my bet on Vancouver shit the bed because Al wasn't with me!). As much as I know that neither myself, Al, or McFadden's will affect how many three pointers Dirk Nowitzki will drill or how many fouls the refs will call -- I still wanted to cover my ass and placate any potentially superstitions that induce a spike in sport betting anxiety. That means sometimes giving in to superstitions -- whether it's wearing a "rally cap" or watching a game in the same place with the same people.

I guess that's why I've been saving any baseball commentary for an email thread with my brother, Jerry, and the Rooster. The infamous "NYC sports thread" has been going on for a few years now with the topics centralizing on all things sports in New York City -- lots of Yankees, Knicks and Jets chatter with a smattering of Miami Hurricanes football, hockey, boxing, UFC, and English soccer.

Yesterday, no one had faith in AJ Burnett. The locker room prankster is beloved among his teammates, but he's struggled down the stretch. AJ was scheduled to take the mound in Game 4 against the Detroit Tigers with the Yankees down 2-1 in a five-game series. The Yankees were on the verge of being eliminated from the playoffs with all hopes resting in the shoulders and right arm of their weakest link in the chain. AJ achieved perfection ten years ago when he tossed a no-hitter, but his best days were way behind him. As a bettor, I frequently bet the OVER (combined run totals) in AJ's games and never dared betting on the Yanks whenever it was his turn in the rotation. I had no faith in him during the season and had even less confidence in the playoffs.

Even my mother, who is nothing close to being a religious person, knew the writing was on the wall. She all but declared the Yankees dead on arrival at the start of Game 4 and sent me a text message stating the only hope the Yanks had was to "pray for them."

Wow. When a native of the Bronx is looking for spiritual help, you know it's a bleak.

That text stunned me. My mother had not-so-secret disdain for AJ Burnett. I'd estimate that 75% of the text messages she sent me over the last two years occurred on days when AJ pitched and usually resembled something like... "AJ sucks."

No one had confidence in AJ. The bookies in Vegas set the line with Yankees as the dog. Everyone lost faith in AJ. The bookies. My mother. Everyone calling into the Mike and the Mad Dog radio show. The guys in my email thread. Even me.

The wiseguys in Vegas bet the Yankees, because they love betting dogs in the playoffs, especially on the brink of elimination. They knew AJ was on the mound and bet the Yankees anyway. That takes huge balls from my perspective as a fan -- but they viewed the situation differently. They probably knew that AJ would be on a short leash and Girardi would yank him before they got into a real jam, and at some point it would come down to the Tigers bullpen holding off an offensive surge in the late innings. I had similar inklings, which I told my brother yesterday morning -- that I had a feeling that AJ would get rocked early on and eventually get yanked in the second inning after giving up two runs, before Phil Hughes out out the fire and pitched five solid innings in relief as Yanks come from behind to win 7-4.

Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good.

Curtis Granderson bailed out AJ Burnett big time with the bases loaded. If Granderson doesn't catch up to that long fly ball and chase it down for the third out to thwart a Tigers rally in the first inning, then it's 2-0 or potentially 3-0 Tigers. At that point, the lynch mob would start chanting AJ's name and he'd be dead by the seventh inning stretch.

Right place, right time. Or as Yogi Berra succinctly stated -- "Hit 'em where they ain't."

But the ain't in that instance was Granderson on his horse and running down the ball to center field. That was the first of two sensational catches he'd make in the outfield (second catch is pictured above), solidifying what everyone who watched the Yanks everyday already knew -- Granderson's outstanding catches symbolized the Yankees season, because he bailed them out in more ways than they'll ever know.

After Granderson's first inning heroics, AJ Burnett better be naming his next kid after Granderson or buying him a Lexus or taking him out to steak dinners every time they're on the road, because if Grandy doesn't make that catch -- AJ Burnett gets whacked. He'd go missing for a few weeks, before his corpse was found floating in the East River, with chunks of his bloated face eaten up by river rats.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

We're Cattle

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

This video kinda scared the shit out of me when I first saw it. Afterall, no one wants to be unplugged from the Matrix, but as soon as they are (after a rough adjustment period), they are glad it happened.

Check out this video created by Stefan Molyneux from Molyneux is an abrasive philosopher who comes off like a smug jackoff, but he really knows his shit when it comes to explaining why we're human cattle living on human farms.

Monday, October 03, 2011

The Exhaustion of Fear Mongering

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Sometimes Nicky walks into the office in the back of the apartment gives me a very condescending snide remark, "Fear mongering... again?"

Yes, it's been an exhausting week of fear mongering over at Tao of Fear. We had a traffic setting week and were very busy with keep tabs on several diverse stories especially the Occupy Wall Street protests, which are picking up steam every day and spreading across the country. We even added a widget to the sidebar so you can view a live stream of the revolution as in unfolds in real time.

If you haven't done so already, check out today's link dump of not-so-mainstream newsworthy items in the Monday Morning Red Pill.

By the way, if you haven't been reading Tao of Fear, here's what you missed since last Monday...
The Revolution Will Be Live Stream'd
Knock, Knock... Who's There?... It's just the Aliens!
Monday A.M. Red Pill: Giant Squids, The Fed Monitoring Facebook and Twitter, Market Collapse, Violent Protests at Occupy Wall Street
What Is a D.U.M.B.?
Keiser Report: Pax Americana Pyramid
Doc Film: Big Bucks Big Pharma
Astronauts Say ETs and UFOs Exist
Doc Film: Meltdown Part 1 - The Men Who Crashed the World
Message from Anonymous: Occupy the Planet
Stefan Molyneux and the Wall Street Protests
Podcast: Clif High and Web Bot Predictions
Message from Anonymous: "Bankers Are the Problem"
Doc Film: Meltdown Part 2 - Global Financial Tsunami
Keiser Report: WW3 Will Makes Us Rich
9 American Cities That Are Going Broke
If you don't follow us on Twitter, we're @TaoFear.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Risky Bizness

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

A lesbian flirted with me.

It's happened before, but never in a grocery store. It had been a while and was so taken aback by the situation that I forgot to smile. Hey, everyone likes to be wanted, right? Especially by lesbians. I assumed this would happen frequently in San Francisco, a city that has become a haven for lesbian activity, but, I was unprepared for any sort of banter over chocolate milk of all things, especially with short-haired lesbians that usually want to beat me up for having a cock swinging between my legs, and not flirt with me.

I blame the special atomic brownie I had ingested a couple of hours earlier. I probably should not have been out roaming around the streets of San Francisco and interacting with the public during those highest levels of toxicity. I probably should've just stayed home and zoned out in front of the TV flipping back and forth between college football and the baseball playoffs. Alas, my sweet tooth got the best of me. I craved two things that we didn't have in the apartment: Joe-Joe's and chocolate milk.

If you have never been to Trader Joe's, they sell cookie product that is crack-like. It's a knock-off version of an Oreo called Joe-Joe's. They taste delicious and are slightly more healthy than the typical Oreo. Sure, if you eat 20 in a sitting, that's bad for you, but one or two Joe-Joe's ain't gonna kill anyone. They also make a second kind of Joe-Joe's with special chocolate covered filling. Yeah, now you know why I'm addicted to boxes of Joe-Joe's. Chocolate plus chocolate. Yeah, those delectable cookies are packaged in boxes which has a cute little toucan on the front. I assume his name is Joe and those are his fucking cookies. I really don't care for semantics when it comes to stoner food stuffs, so I never spent more than two seconds inspecting the box before I tore it open.

An open box of Joe-Joe's gets eaten within a few hours in my apartment. I could blame my roomies Halli and Nicky for devouring the cookies while I'm not looking. Sometimes I have to hide the boxes or they will get devoured by folks when they stop over on Monday nights to play poker.

Or maybe there's an invisible ghost that floats around, or a grey alien colony behind our house that sneaks in while I'm sleeping to polish off the rest of the cookies.

Anyway, with a Yankees game (or moreso the continuation of a rain delay from game 1 which lasted 23 hours) on the agenda, I had to make sure I had a proper snack to keep up my inflated energy levels during the baseball game. Hence, why I actually snuck out and wandered around Trader Joes during a worst possible time -- when it was super crowded, like it always is. Some reason, Saturday afternoons are hell at Trader Joes because hipsters, hippies and parents with strollers converge on the local grocery store in my neighborhood.

Busy super markets were not designed for fucked up people. Yes, those 24-hour mega-stores are perfect for stoners and drug fiends during late night "I got the munchies" runs at 2am when the store is practically empty and you can roam the brightly-lit aisles without fear of bugging out other customers because you reek like weed and eyeballs are bright fucking red.

The Trader Joes in my hood is not designed for intoxicated freaks at 2pm, right around the time the brownie kicked in and minor hallucinations bombarded me as I walked down the street. Whoever made the atomic brownie, specifically designed for medicinal marijuana cancer patients, was right to advise me to only eat half.

I took one step into Trader Joes and was already miserable because I got stuck walking behind a very rotund lady. I was a little slow to "hit the hole" whenever a small gap of space opened up. The New Yorker in me often feels like a running back in a crowded situation, ready to be pounced up by blood-thirsty defensive linemen, so I quickly hit a tiny gap in the crowd to avoid the crush. My quick feet became stumps caught in sand. I hesitated and failed to rush ahead, so instead I kinda slowly waddled through the flower section before I got up the nerve to hit the hole when the next gap presented itself in front of a fruit stand. Instead of a smooth transition, I banged into the lady and she almost fell over into the oranges.

"So sorry ma'am," I half-assed apologized, "I'm here to get Joe-Joe's."

I quickly disappeared into the crowd and remembered to get the only thing that Nicky asked for -- a small carton of half and half for her coffee. While in the milk/dairy section I found the mother load of chocolate milk. But not just any chocolate milk, but Trader Joe's super, smooth special organic chocolate milk, that tastes like silk-flavored chocolate cascading down your windpipe.

I'm not much of a milk guy and I'm very paranoid that any Fukushima radioactive fallout with manifest itself in the US by disrupting milk production, but I put my fears aside and pulled the carton of chocolate milk into my basket. I had to have the chocolate milk. So silky...

I rounded up a couple of total stoner items like graham crackers, Joe-Joe's, and chocolate covered raisins. I got freaked out by a hippie girl arguing with someone over the "free trade" cocoa label and quickly abandoned the aisle. I found myself at the front of the store and assessed the line situation. I had fewer than six items, but usually the "12 items or less" was longer than the regular lanes due to angle-shooting hispters. I stood in what I thought was the shortest line and patiently waited for my turn, hoping that everyone around me didn't notice how wasted I was. That's when it was time for me to get my good scanned and the lesbian hit on me.

"Oh my god," said the lesbian, who looked like Tom Cruise circa Risky Business, "I looooove this chocolate milk. It takes so silky and smoooooth, like I'm drinking a chocolate shake."

She said this while caressing the carton before slowly putting it in a paper bag. She then gave me the gaga eyes. I did a doubletake. Did she really say that? Did she really look at me that way? Seriously, I know I was fucked up, but was a lesbian actually hitting on me?

The only thing I could muster up was... "Thanks. This is the best chocolate milk in the solar system. My kids love it."

Yes, I know what you're thinking... I don't have kids (at least that I'm aware of). And no, I have no clue why I blurted that out. I blamed the brownie and the lesbian really knocked me off my game, so much so that I started talking about my imaginary kids. Lesbians have that strange mystical power, and the ones I've encountered love organic chocolate milk. I better get used to that fact, because lesbians are a dime a dozen in San Francisco.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

What I'm Watching... 10/1/11 Version

By Pauly
San Francisco, CA

Yesterday was Trey's birthday. As you know, I'm more than a fan and consider him an idol. My goal is to write 10% as good as Trey plays guitar. Anyway, I posted a great interview with Matt Pinfield and Trey in 2005.

I saw Contagion last week at a tiny theatre in my neighborhood. It was the last day they were showing it before they switched films in favor of Moneyball. Contagion was better than some friends said, and I enjoyed it, but I actually hoped for something with a bit more spice from director Steven Soderberg. I really dug his last film with porn star Sasha Grey The Girlfriend Experience, but I didn't know how he would handle a germ-thriller like Contagion that featured a some-what all-star cast -- Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, and the dude who played Morpheus. At least Gwyneth dies in the first act of the film and she's patient zero as doctors try to figure out what the fuck happened. I dunno if I can watch Matt Damon actually act anymore (even the Ocean's 11 franchise) because of the impact that the Bourne Identity franchise has had on me. Bourne really ruined any future film I see Matt Damon in. I mean, if there ain't a car crash or he's not beating the shit out of a CIA assassin using close quarters Brazilian street fighting techniques, I doubt I can watch it. But, I gotta say, I got sucked into Green Zone, which essentially was the Bourne Identity in Iraq.

Speaking of that huge elephant in the room called the Iraq War, I checked out a documentary called No End in Sight, directed by Charles Ferguson, or the same guy who did Inside Job. Fergsuon's film about the financial crisis of 2008 won an Oscar earlier this year for best documentary film. I had no idea he also directed No End in Sight, so I checked it out. His film sheds light on the behind the scenes internal fuck ups after the fall of Baghdad in 2003. Here's a better explanation: "No End in Sight examines the manner in which the principal errors of U.S. policy – the use of insufficient troop levels, allowing the looting of Baghdad, the purging of professionals from the Iraqi government, and the disbanding of the Iraqi military – largely created the insurgency and chaos that engulf Iraq today."

And speaking of the financial crisis of 2008, I recently posted something Tao of Fear about the greed in the housing market that caused collapse and ensuing catastrophe in the financial markets. The four part documentary titled Meltdown pinpointed the root of the global financial meltdown that occurred three years ago. Check out Meltdown Part 1: The Men Who Crashed the World and Meltdown Part 2: A Global Financial Tsunami.

And speaking of Wall Street corruption, there's been a lot of momentum ongoing with the Occupy Wall Street protests. We've even have a live stream of the revolution running on Tao of Fear. Just today, Anonymous posted a haunting video stating that The Bankers Are the Problem. Meanwhile, philosopher and radio host Stefan Molyneux thinks the protesters need to educate themselves much more before they start the revolution.

And you know another cheap segue is coming... speaking of Tao of Fear, I recently watched a documentary about pharmaceutical companies called Big Bucks Big Pharma. It's a couple of years old, but worth a viewing.