In my high school comedy of manners, #Trump would be the goofy kid-brother stalking horse for #Cruz.

Who wants to buy ‘Frankenstein’ retold as a high school farce?

Photo by: Peter Stevens

From December 10, 2015:

Call this a movie treatment. I’ll flesh it out and make it farcical fiction when somebody’s check clears the bank. For now, the bare bones:

Act I: Donald Trump is looking for a way too goose his reality TV franchise when Ted Cruz comes to him with a bold plan: Trump is to run for President as Cruz’ stalking horse, yielding his support to him before the GOP Convention. Trump agrees on the condition that he can later repackage his campaign as television: Presidential Apprentice.

Act II: Trump clowns it up – since he’s making television – and Cruz clamps it down, acting like the Captain of the football team indulging his goofy kid brother. But where both expect the clowning to flame out in short order, instead it grows to a conflagration. And since Trump is built to believe nothing but his own bullshit…

Act III: Life will be what it turns out to be be, but imagination is what you want to have happen. That’s masturbatory, if all you’re doing is indulging yourself. But fiction can present a simulated future that spares you the pain of living through that reality.

So: Trump cannot prevail in this story, since he is an inherently tragic figure, the unloved love child of Aeschylus and Oscar Wilde.

Cruz should win in the end, given the idea of benedy, but since he is being creepily crafty in Act I, I will want to see him prevail by means of the moral improvement he masters in Act II.

That’s benedy as farce, and I can think of a dozen different ways to write it – with my favorite being as a high school comedy of manners.

Do send that check if you’d like to see more, but, in the mean time consider this:

What if this scenario is not fiction?

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For Father’s Day, here’s why fathers matter most: Doing the jobs only dads can do.

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 8.16.24 AMFathers should learn how to change diapers? No. Fathers are tasked to learn how to change the world.

Church this week:

It’s not defended in the video, but the argument undergirding this is that all of civility – the stuff of civilization – emerges from fatherhood.

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For Father’s Day, sympathy for the trans-aborted.

“How can you live your authentic reality as a stuffed animal if you can’t be laundered? Are the trans-furry to be forevermore mislabeled as ‘Dry Clean Only’?”

“How can you live your authentic reality as a stuffed animal if you can’t be laundered? Are the trans-furry to be forevermore mislabeled as ‘Dry Clean Only’?”

A Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Willie story

June 18, 2015

“So here’s a question for you,” the Class Clown said. “Can a trans-furry be abused, neglected, abandoned – even be owned as property?”

“Or laundered?” I said that.

“That’s right. How can you live your authentic reality as a stuffed animal if you can’t be laundered? Are the trans-furry to be forevermore mislabeled as ‘Dry Clean Only’?”

I laughed at that idea. I’ve always been able to laugh with the Class Clown.

“There’s a marriage problem, too,” he said. “Plus a trans-furry polygamy problem. Who has just one stuffed animal? But when things don’t work out as planned, who gets the toy box?”

“And what happens to the little furries? I wish that were funnier.”

The Class Clown shrugged. He said, “None of this is funny. It’s just hysterical.”

We were sprawled into the back corner of a vast, empty sports-themed bar at Skyharbor Airport in scenic, historic Phoenix, Arizona. I had blown one stand-by flight and I was hanging out to see if I could snag a seat on another when he happened upon me and dragged me off for a pop.

He’s pushing forty by now, but I’ve known him since he was an acne-avenging teenager, a real-life class clown making his reputation by mocking the absurdities of the powerful. People love that stuff.

That’s not really true. I make my way by never wanting anything anyone else can take away from me, but normal people don’t have things that easy. The Class Clown is the kind of guy who gets fired from his job for muttering the wrong joke or for making the wrong political contribution or for having the wrong cartoon on his computer screen. I’ve worried about him since we met, just because this is no safe world for a man who knows when to laugh.

“I love the trans-racial idea,” he said. “It explains so much! When John Fogerty was ‘chooblin’ on down to New Orleans,’ what race was (more…)

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Lies all the way down: Ventilating Uncle Willie’s Father’s Day funk.

I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
“Hey, dipshit, if you want to lose your house and lose your family, to see your kids a third of the time if you’re lucky, to watch them spin out of control as they learn to pit the two of you against each other, to lose half or more of your income, and to have the happy choice of trolling bars for disease-ridden skanks or spanking the monkey to internet porn for decades on end — all you have to do is nothing. You are right at the threshold of that fate, and it won’t take much of a breeze to push you over the edge.”From the Kindle book Sun City.I have great ideas. You have money. We should trade.
Aristocrats-hat / Beach Photos / CC BY-NC-ND

A Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Willie story

June 18, 2013

“Did you ever think about how you go about telling a lie?” I said that. I’m pretty sure no one else in the entire world says things like that.

I was talking to The Skatepunk, who is pretty phlegmatic for his age, but that’s the kind of question to bring out the squirminess in anyone.

“What? Am I telling you something you don’t know? Everyone lies, and the best we can hope for is to put some distance between us and our last big whopper. But it’s there, and it will not be forgotten. If life were Liars Anonymous, the only way most people would ever get a ninety-day chip would be by lying about it.”

He chuckled. He was sitting opposite me on a bench at Duffeeland Dog Park. He had come there late in the day on Father’s Day Sunday on his skateboard, carrying his grandfather’s white Scots Terrier in his arms. That dog was now nestled up against mine, the two of them lost together in the comfortable affinity of an afternoon nap.

“But if you think about what you’ve done, in the past, when you told a lie, you can learn a whole lot about the world around you. So your choice is not telling the truth or spinning up a lie. Instead, there is facing the music as one (more…)

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It’s sims all the way down for Elon Musk and sophisticated nihilists everywhere!

“What? Me, worry?”

“What? Me, worry?”

The sophistry of nihilism is nothing new in philosophy – more’s the pity. Now Elon Musk goes that ancient game one better – by insisting we are all living in a video game.

No one actually believes any of these absurd anti-reality, anti-human-efficacy claims. The people who mouth them are simply jacking off in public, trading astounding anti-intellectual pronouncements for evanescent Incandescent rewards. But their claims are not without consequence, and that’s why this matters.

Church this week takes Musk to task, but it also takes to task the people tasked with defending reality, most especially the ever-evasive Ayn Rand Institute:

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“Wha’s happenin’?” “Nothing. Go back to sleep.”

The Harried Harrier turned to the Senior Partner, a very expensive-looking, very reserved gentleman. He said: “Do you say this is happening?” The Senior Partner did not even look at Harrier. Instead, he began to poke at the elevator’s controls with his umbrella. But the elevator had heat-sensitive buttons, the kind that won’t even work through gloves. With a slightly sheepish look, he strode over to the control panel. He pushed door open twice, saw that it did not work, then pushed the alarm button. He held it down a long time, the loud ringing causing the child to cower and Grandmother Lump to gasp. The Senior Partner gave two more long rings, then resumed his place with a look of confidence.Photo by: Matt MacGillivray

A Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Willie story

Rule 1: I will not take elevators.

Rule 2: Where I violate Rule 1, I will do so alone.

Oh, well, I was late. Is that an excuse?

I was late and running for the elevators and I slid in just as the doors were closing. The car was crowded, or maybe it was just small. As it began to race upward, I reached to push the button for my floor.

We made a few stops, and the crowding eased some, but after one of them the doors closed, but the car did not move. A harried-looking young man by the door began to push the buttons on the panel in front of him. He pushed all of them at least twice. Nothing happened. He was looking reluctantly at the alarm button, looking like a man who didn’t like to think he’d ever want to push it, when the lumpy old woman with the cottony white hair said:

“This isn’t happening.”

“It is happening,” said Harried-Looking, with the expression of a man who has studied up on just that subject.

“No. It is not,” replied Frau Lumpy. “It is not happening. It’s only a dream. Just a bad dream.”

In the other corner was Mrs. Thirtyish, complete with five-year-old-of-no-discernable-gender and a thick magazine at which she was staring with vigor. The little one squeaked, “What are they (more…)

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Telling long stories about other people’s nightmares — for Father’s Day.

Can't let go
“Every one of those guys knows that this could be his last Father’s Day at home, his last chance to see his kids before they get sideswiped for life by the family court system, his last chance to make believe that he and his wife are building something lasting, that he’s not just swimming against a relentless current that will carry him, eventually, inexorably, over the falls.”From the Kindle book Sun City. I have great ideas. You have money. We should trade.! / / CC BY-NC-ND

A Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Willie story

June 12, 2013

“Your uncle’s kinda creepy.” Megwyn’s friend Calliope said that. I used to think Megwyn was the dumbest name I’d ever heard of for a girl, but Calliope – once Homer’s muse, now just a noisy sideshow nuisance – owns that trophy now.

“Not creepy, eccentric. He taught me that word. Anyway, he’s not my uncle. People just call him ‘Uncle Willie.’” That was Megwyn herself speaking.

“If he’s not your uncle then why are we here?” She said it ‘hee-yerr,’ a quick elision with a backspin of contempt mixed with affected boredom.

“Would you rather be back with Cheryl and Jeff?”

“Good point.”

I wasn’t eavesdropping, just inescapably overhearing. Young people seem to think that, if you’re involved in one conversation, you can’t hear another. We were at The Handlebar, a very dog-friendly indoor-outdoor cantina in downtown Tempe. I was ordering drinks for the three of us – water for me, sodas for the girls – and arranging a water bowl for Naso, but they were so loud I couldn’t avoid hearing what they were saying.

Tempe is a little piece of Austin or Boulder in the midst of the vast, ever-inflating bouncy-house that is endlessly-suburban Phoenix. It is home to Arizona State University, which means there is a captive audience of 30,000 students and maybe 20,000 more ex-students and hangers-on within a mile or so of The Handlebar.

In consequence, Tempe is the only reliable night-life in The Valley, as it is called, the only consistent street life, the only place for rich people – the older ones settled down in Scottsdale, the young ones (more…)

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