Archive for the ‘General Nonsense’ Category

Count No Mortal

September 21, 2012

I’ve never been the sunniest of characters.

Entering into a discussion about the quest for personal human happiness, I felt the need to unknowingly quote Oedipus Rex.

“Count no mortal happy till he has passed the final limit of his life secure from pain.”

Of course, as a youth, I used to read Greek tragedies for fun. Willaim Faulkner, as well. I was that sort of kid. I still am. I find beauty in what others would consider excessively gloomy music, films of a decidedly twisted bent, art with a darkened perspective. Hell, I even enjoy my comedy black. It all appeals to me, at my very core, exploration and expression of those murky, even unpleasant, elements we find without and within in what I can only describe as an insane world.

There are reasons for it, most likely, as I explained further in the conversation.

“I’m probably the wrong person to even discuss this with, given a lifelong predisposition toward pessimism. Unfortunately, I learned at a young age some harsh lessons about the darker aspects of human nature, the different forms of human suffering, great and small. I think real happiness is very rare. I can’t think of anyone in my immediate life I can describe as having found it. Show me a truly happy person and I’ll show you 10,000 born into horrific, hopeless misery. We are, in so many ways, an ugly, ugly species.

So what do you do? I used to think creative fulfillment was the key to happiness, but the road is littered with successful artists and writers for whom that was no answer, either. Basically, my philosophy is to try and enjoy whatever happy moments you can engineer, however brief or otherwise. Because they seem to always be balanced by a measure of difficulty, stress and sadness. Savor the good things as best you can because it’s always possible the next nightmare is right around the corner.

Oh, look. Here it comes now.”

It really is the way I feel. I don’t see a lot of genuine human happiness or even the possibility of it in the average lifespan. There’s too much burden, too much suffering, to much horrific muck we have to shovel day in and day out. A state of true enlightened happiness seems the stuff of pure fantasy to me. I’m serious in my contention you need to take the time to savor those moments of peace or joy when you can create or stumble upon them. They can be all too rare.

So, is this morbid self-determinism? Have I created the darkness inside and around me simply because I believe it exists? My own pessimism making itself all too real? Perhaps.

Or perhaps is it just an unpleasant form of realism. A sickening inability to completely turn a blind eye to the daily cavalcade of disturbing news stories we’re inundated with, the problems and stresses breaking the minds and backs of the majority of people around us in everyday life, the slow march to nowhere we all seem to be on, spinning about on a planet we’ve all but ruined with our very presence. Our. Stupid. Pointless. Existence.

Then again, maybe I’m just having a bad day. It happens. Either way, I’ve got to go. Honey Boo-Boo is on and I can’t bear to miss it.

Told you I like it dark.

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Courtney Stoker: The Face of a Sad New Feminism

July 18, 2012

Anyone remember when being an activist meant actually being active? Going out and doing something important and relevant for a cause? Not sitting at home behind a keyboard, harrassing celebrities on Twitter over innocent remarks, hoping for 15 minutes of social media fame that you can blog about for the rest of your life?

courtney stoker

Meet Courtney Stoker. The self-described “immoral” sci-fi feminist overlord of an imaginary but soaringly righteous Police State of hard line, blog-serious Twitter watchdogs.

Be careful what you say, Celebri-tweeters! Courtney is ever vigilant and, should you misspeak in any way contrary to her dogmatic views on women who dress up as Princess Leia well, then, you’re going to hear about it!

Take poor Simon Pegg. Gentle, beloved, funny-as-shit Simon Pegg. Makes an innocuous, simply true comment on Twitter in reference to the San Diego Comic-Con about the visually alluring nature of seductively dressed Cosplay women and, boom, Mount Courtney explodes, ready to cover the internet in dark, obscuring volcanic femin-ash. The rage spews forth. Apologies are demanded. The horror! Read the whole exchange if you care to.

There’s no need, of course, if you’d rather deal in simple truth.

One: Simon Pegg is no enemy to feminism, in any way shape or form, and the misguided way this particular militant is attacking him suggests only her own inexperience and lack of focus on the agenda. Any serious activist will tell you. Don’t waste time engaging a possible friend when there are real enemies to fight. Her attack is utterly pointless.

Two: Cosplay girls are sometimes hot. They know it. We know it. Many of them at SDCC deliberately dress in that seductive manner to attract exactly the kind of male attention and publicity they know they will receive at such an event. That’s the truth. Courtney’s issue may be with these women, when you think of it. Not the men with the natural instinct to look at them.

And you know what, fuck it, it’s okay to be male and recognize beauty. Am I objectifying the human body when I marvel at a beautiful Renaissance nude, male or female? Then why am I doing so when admiring the living, breathing real thing? Lighten up, Stoker.

Three: Bottom line, Courney wants publicity. The thrill of showing the world her little Twitter interaction with a celebrity. Imagine how her heart was pounding last night when he replied to her! How her stomach fluttered when he actually responded! Which was his only mistake, by the way. Had he ignored her, he would have denied her the starfucking moment she so desperately desired. That she rushed so quickly to Storify to crow about. “Look! Look! A famous person spoke to me on Twitter! I’m somebody now!”

Sad truth: Real feminism is a cause that deserves better representation than a bumbling amateur like this. A person who says things like, “OMG, that is gross…” It needs real people with real courage and genuine intellect and the willingness to get off their ass and actually fight in a real, tangible way. Not a wee puppy dog barking at passing cars for no reason. A bird in an unlocked cage, tweeting at nothing.

One word for you, Courtney: BORING!

MacReady

May 5, 2012

macready thing

I am the Thing.

Covered in orange rocks and as strong as the Hulk? Nyet.

I dunno. Everything has gone green and I’ve gone Mac. iPad, iPhone, iMac. Sometimes all going at the same damned time, each displaying differnt apps/programs/windows. iBooks, iTunes, iPsychotic Break.

Someone needs to take me out into the snowstorm and set me on fire.

Bigfoot Is Blurry

April 6, 2012

The genius of Mitch Hedberg was not just that he was funny as shit. His slanted observations of life that can, at times, seem so surreal always have a nugget of truth in them that we recognize. Thus, the reason we laugh so hard at/with him.

A good example:

“I bought a doughnut and they gave me a receipt for the doughtnut… I don’t need a receipt for the doughnut. I give you money and you give me the doughnut, end of transaction. We don’t need to bring ink and paper into this. I can’t imagine a scenario that I would have to prove that I bought a doughnut. To some skeptical friend, ‘Don’t even act like I didn’t get that doughnut, I’ve got the documentation right here… It’s in my file at home. …Under “D”.’”

And the proof.

mitch hedberg

Seriously? The thing’s about a mile long. There have been Supreme Court rulings that didn’t contain as must text and information as this.

    Please note that, on April Fourth Two Thousand and Twelve at Seven Forty One in the Morning, Order Number twenty Nine was, in fact, placed. Billy R., in the course of transaction Sequence NUmber 1932029 on Register 5 in Dunkin Donuts Store Number 332998 has recorded that one Hot Coffee Large Original Blend Regular Cream and Sugar was order through the drive through station and…

It’s insane.

Why are most of the funniest, most essential people comedy has given us dead? Bill Hicks, Hedberg. Andy Kaufman, George Carlin. Dave Attell is still alive but, jesus, he doesn’t look so good, does he?

Winds of Change

May 23, 2011

A few minor changes have occurred here in the world of Ken Socrates and the Multi-Media Behemoth that is the Ken Socrates World News Organization and I feel like it’s only fair to let you, my small yet obsessively devoted audience, in on some of the details. I won’t bore you completely with all the legal wranglings behind all this, as certain court orders prohibit me saying too much, but suffice to say that in future conversations about Gorman Moloko, current Managing Editor of the KSWNO, I will be referring to him solely as either a) a salty feminine hygeine product or b) the malodorous result of a woman not using said product.

In any case, you may want to adjust your bookmarks as follows.

My little personal site here has now become kensocrates.com. I feel like this works better as those few of you interested in the more personal ramblings and disjointed opinions I might have can more easily seek me out here without all the restrictive editorial filterings of a power hungry control freak manboy (whosoever that might be).

Meanwhile, the former kensocrates.com has become the KSWNO.com, home site and archive for the Ken Socrates World News Organization. I’m told by Gorman that the site will be run in a more magazine style format and exist as a well organized repository for the writings of myself and the dynamic pantheon of talent who have contributed mightily to the organization’s success over the years.

Including:

    Horatio Von Darkfaulker

    Stamford Buckforth Pimplton III

    Joe Hawaii & Gaylord “Ra” Fondue

    Chippy McGuiness

    Dwight Cooter

    Willie T. Sherman

    Ozzy McGurt, of course, maintains his own site over at nocandyasses.com.

So, yeah, adjust those bookmarks accordingly and if you need to reach me, my new public corporate e-mail is ken@kswno.com. Feel free to shoot me a note if there’s any confusion or you want the real dirt about this whole thing. Gorman may have the edge on me in terms of a crisper memory and certain photo evidence but I know a few secrets myself. Grown men who play with action figures are not without skeletons in their own closets, trust me.

Personally, I think he’s just pissed that it was me who got invited to This Whovian Life and not him.

How do you like me now, fucker?

Smart Phone, Dumb User

April 16, 2011

iphone 4

So I recently broke down and invested in an iPhone. The time had come. Even though I hardly ever leave the bunker these days, I figured I needed to be prepared for all eventualities. You just never know when your land might be revealed to be an ancient native burial ground and the trees start reaching in the windows to grab you out of your bed. Or from the floor where you happened to pass out. Or the back lawn, shotgun in hand, naked except for a soiled pair of Fantastic Four boxer shorts. Wherever it is you sleep.

Bottom line, you never know when you might have to hit the road in a hurry. No one knows that better than me. Psychotic ex-wives, enemies amongst every secret society on earth and a $15,475 dollar balance on your Amazon credit card are the sort of things you that might cause you to want to go mobile post haste.

Thus, I now have that ability.

Sure, I’ve gone into hiding before. But each time there was a small amount of guilt about my inability, while missing, to stay in touch with my tiny, yet viciously dedicated audience. Yes, it’s true that guilt was easily washed away with various substances and the odd Polynesian prostitute but it would come back quickly whenever I sobered up. So, yeah, every few months or so I would feel bad.

Now, that’s all been solved. Shiny new technology has taken care of the issue. We shall never be parted again.

Some thoughts on this happy little device:

  • Apps are fascinating little things, are they not? I’ll admit to not being entirely impressed with the game selection. A lot of stuff looks like games you find in the $9.99 PC games section at Office Max. Stuff that looked good on Windows 98. Old role-playing games. Countless “free” MMORPG’s and the supposedly cute flash style games featuring brids, penguins and the odd pumpkin. Angry Birds is addictive, I admit, but annoyingly so. You end up wanting to kill the smiling pigs with the helmets and i think I actually said “Fuck you and your mustache, pig!” at least once. Good thing I wasn’t at a traffic stop when it happened is all I can say.
  • The things aren’t made for Man Hands. Texting becomes a bit of a crap shoot as the auto-correct feature turns my constant misspellings into what seem like bad subtitles from japanese monster movies. The term “canker” was recently sent in a business text which was certainly confusing the recipient. I just sent “ham” instead of human. People used to my normal typos are even more perplexed than usual of late. really, you need fingers the size and shape of knitting needles to operate the thing effectively.
  • Otherwise, it’s a pretty handy tool. Custom ring tones can be easily made. I answer right now to Hood’s “The Negatives” but TWG’s “Shut That Door” and MBV’s “Only Shallow” are readily available. Messaging is brilliantly easy. I’m in touch with every science and sports site I like. Twitter is more accessible and I have actually been more active than the twice a year I had been before. Like I said, it keeps me more in touch with folks. Good and bad for someone so naturally anti-social but so be it. It’s a new age.
  • In the end, it’s a new toy for sure but one with a lot more functionality than others, one that I can see will be extremely useful as long as it doesn’t end up at the bottom of Frank Black’s swimming pool like my last phone.

    Note to self: Make sure there’s nothing important in your pockets when you’re standing near a pool and Kim Deal is in a bad mood.

    Dignified Disintegration

    March 23, 2011

    Phenomenal.

    A gentleman at bookmat describing Belong’s October Language album.

    “The collaborative venture of Turk Dietrich and Michael Jones, Belong inhabit a sonic territory that seems perpetually out of sight – giving the same effulgent warmth as standing with your back to a sunset, or glimpsing a blizzard through a frosted window. Understanding that all beauty has an inherent element of decay, Belong resemble a colourful photo left out in the sun to fade – combining an operatic scope akin to Kevin Shields, with an eroded sensibility that flirts with Baskinski and shares a certain predilection with Fennesz or Gas. Constructed with an attention to detail that borders on the compulsive, Belong open with ‘I Never Lose. Never Really.’; wherein a camera-obscura approach slowly reveals a static fuzz of sprawling soundscapes and awe-inspiring intensity that shares its scope with Sigur Ros, whilst resorting to none of the orchestral bombast on which they rely. The fact that Dietrich has collaborated with Telefon Tel Aviv (whose Joshua Eustis guests on the title-track) also becomes apparent throughout ‘October Language’, not so much due to an overt similarity in sound, but more through the wide-screen production and starburst intensity in which they both revel. With the likes of ‘I’m Too Sleepy… Shall We Swim?’, ‘Who Told You This Room Exists’ and ‘The Door Opens The Other Way’ all possessing a corroded elegance that can be interpreted as either majestic or malignant, ‘October Language’ is a masterclass in dignified disintegration. Phenomenal.”

    I’m going to have to listen to that one.

    I think I prefer their Common Era album which, according to that same site, sounds as follows; “Skeletal songs and wordless vocals appear from the dense depths of blurred sound like Grouper playing Jesus and Mary Chain covers in lost cavern, a few miles of the coast. ”

    Now who could resist something like that?

    As an aside, the remix of Tropic of Cancer’s Be Brave by Richard H. Kirk (Cabaret Voltaire) is thumpingly brilliant.

    You Are Here

    March 4, 2011

    You can sing it with me if you want to.

    A Sad State

    February 2, 2011

    There was an astonishing point made on BBC News America this evening, even if the broadcaster wasn’t aware he was making it. When introducing the story of all the new exoplanets discovered by the astonishing-in-it’s own-right Kepler Telescope, he suggested that because the news was so troubling of late on planet Earth with all the meteorological and political whirlwinds threatening the well being of so many, that this was news that might cheer us up.

    In other words. If you’re looking for good news these days?

    Try looking at a different planet than this one.

    Conversing With Gonz

    January 11, 2011

    burn motherfucker

    Random chats may or may not include the following statements and/or questions.

    Dirty fucking rotter
    You dirty fucker.

    i think i saw a retarded monkey kicking the shit out of a guy on the other corner when I walked the dog.
    an actual monkey, like a small chimpanzee I think.

    well, it was outside this shady bar. the guy had a beard and i think when he was showing the monkey to some of his pals and this chick the thing went fuckin’ spastic and started hitting the guy and fucking got his beer bottle out of his hand and almost brained him with it
    a total free for all. just wacked the girl was screaming.

    well, the people were fine it was the monkey
    that fucker went apeshit

    Always make my knees pointy.

    …on a good day he’ll say, “at least they never connected me to that dead hooker in Houston…”