Feb 212017
 

I would guess some people will compare Milo Yiannopoulos to Icarus.

I am reminded instead of one of my stepbrother’s years-ago adventures. Long story made very short: bunch of buddies together, one had a go-kart, and oh yeah, there was some beer. Every time they refueled the kart they were using a bottle of 104 Octane Boost in the gasoline. Then someone got the bright idea to run the kart on only 104 Octane Boost. Holy shit, that made the kart go fast!

(For 30 minutes or so. Then the engine burned up. I believe I remember the words “melted piston” being tossed around.)

I was momentarily fascinated by Milo Yiannopoulos. I appreciated a lot of what he had to say about the scourge of political correctness and the warped objectives of fourth-wave feminism.

But mostly I watched because his numerous detractors blew through “dislike” so quickly. He fostered near-immediate visceral hatred in liberal ideologues, at an intensity I really hadn’t seen since Rush Limbaugh 20 years ago. It was hard for me to see why. He told you right to your face that he was an asshole and a provocateur. If I tell you I’m trying to piss you off, and then you get pissed off to the point of meltdown, then…?

Thing is, you could always smell the heat. This was not a guy who ran any slower than 6,000 RPM. The engine had some power, but it was also operating at most of capacity all the time. As that olfactory cocktail of hot metal and stressed oil became richer and more pervasive, it wasn’t hard to guess that we probably weren’t headed for an orderly gear-down and cool-off.

Turns out Milo’s melted piston was saying it was just dandy for adult men to have sex with young boys.

I had been intrigued enough to want to read his book, but Simon & Schuster isn’t going to publish it now. That’s the right call. You can’t make extensive comments attempting to legitimize pedophilia and still expect to sit at the grown-up table (however tenuously you were doing so).

We’ll have some disingenuous machinations now, during which his very blithest fans will try to reconstruct a rational base on which to support him, and some number of his detractors will try to install him as the universal leader of all conservatism, now that he’s been unambiguously discredited. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Next!

 Posted by at 10:38 am
Dec 212016
 

My older son got his learner’s permit today.

I remember very well him crinkling his nose at me and crying as I set him on the heated table to be examined when he was about two minutes old, and this was just a couple of years ago, so I think there must be some mistake.

Sigh.

My dad was my primary instructor. There were good things he did that I’m going to pass along intact. There are other things I’m going to spend a lot more time on, like the running narrative when you’re driving. Your thoughts come quickly behind the wheel, and if you give voice to every single one of them, you might be surprised how many there are. I’ve done that with Nathan a time or two, and he’s eventually going to practice doing it with me as a passenger.

One opportunity Nate won’t get immediately is learning to drive a standard, because I don’t have one to offer him. The first vehicle with a manual transmission that I ever drove was a ’71 Corvette 4-speed with a racing clutch, in the parking lot of the Anniston Bible Church. Naturally, it was a lot easier to stomp it out of the hole than it was to ease it gingerly up to speed. (The latter was very nearly impossible.) I asked Dad why I was learning on such a hard car, and he said “because if you can drive this you can drive anything else you’ll encounter.” Indeed.

But, good enough. There is plenty to work on without rowing gears. We’re going to start out operating at about two-thirds real world pace. And as long as there is consistent evidence that he is listening, I will be patient and understanding, just as my dad was.

Thoughts and prayers.

 Posted by at 11:35 am
Dec 162016
 

Look, I get it. It’s displeasing and disturbing, all the way around, but it’s reality. Some substantial number of Americans decided to put a narcissistic jackass with a questionable past and minimal experience in the White House. But his eight years are nearly up, and the republic has survived. Have a good weekend.

 Posted by at 3:06 pm
Nov 222016
 

Dudes and dolls, I always feel a little sheepish when I come back to you after an unexplained, longer-than-customary absence. “Now baby, listen, it’s not like that…” I hear myself saying in my head as you accuse me of burning my discursive oil elsewhere. (Or “dipping my nib”? Too provocative?) We’ve actually been pretty busy. We […]

 Posted by at 11:24 pm
Nov 182016
 

President-elect Donald Trump has nominated Senator Jeff Sessions for Attorney General and Congressman Mike Pompeo as Director of the CIA. That’s a longtime immigration hardliner to deal with the illegal alien problem, and a Tea Party pragmatist to gather intelligence on radical Islamic terrorism. These are not the picks of a president preparing to capitulate. It […]

 Posted by at 1:41 pm

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