Quiz! How Rude Is That?

The current presidential campaigns sometimes make me wonder if my standards of rudeness are overly strict.  For instance, when speaking of soldiers who have risked their lives to protect me and have ended up with post-traumatic stress disorder as a result, I generally don’t refer to them as weak.  I would consider that rude.  I would also consider it wildly inaccurate and monumentally stupid, but then, I’m not in politics.  If I were, I’d consider those to be selling points.

costume-15847_640All right, all right, I’ll stop with the political diatribe (even though I’m right).  What I really want to say is, when this many people strike me as being this rude, the devil’s advocate in me has begun to wonder if the one who’s really out of line is me.  Are manners now meaningless?  Are precepts of politeness simply passé?  Do I demand too much decorum and thus doom myself to deportmental disappointment?  Okay, okay, I’ll stop with the alliteration (and the made-up words).  All I ask in return is that you take this quiz designed by experts (me) to tell if I’m unduly uppity (sorry) or if people just really are that rude.

1. Public (Restroom) Interrogation

I walked into the ladies’ room of a department store the other day, and a woman who was at the sink looked up and started talking to me.  I made a polite reply and went into a stall, at which point the woman not only didn’t stop talking, but actually continued to talk to me the entire time I was in the stall.  As a matter of fact, she asked several questions.  I wasn’t sure if it would be worse to say nothing or to answer (I said nothing).  Seriously!  How rude was that?

A.  That’s pretty rude.  I mean, what if you had a bashful bladder?
B.  Cut her some slack.  Maybe her boundaries were off, but she was just trying to be friendly.
C.  Was it number one or number two?
D.  You mean how rude was it for you to say nothing?  Yep, that was pretty rude, all right.  And mean.  That poor lady.
E.  Depends.  Are you a dude?

2.  Fuming Amid the Fumes

I was stuck in traffic with a friend, and by traffic I mean a seemingly endless line of cars moving at an approximate rate of five feet per hour.  After about twenty minutes (or 1.67 feet), and I’m surprised it took that long, some complete asshole came barreling down the shoulder because, you see, he really needed to be somewhere.  Just as he was about to leave my field of vision, which admittedly isn’t hard to do, some other complete asshole let. him. back. in.  Come on!  How rude was that?

A.  OMG, I know, right?  Who does he think he is, passing on the shoulder like that?  Wait in traffic like everyone else; you’re not that important.
B.  OMG, I know, right?  Why did he let that car back in the lane?  It’s the most sacred rule of the road:  thou shalt not let the asshole back in.
C.  Did you know that more people think it’s always wrong to cut in line than think it’s always wrong to commit murder?  I wonder if that means that offing someone who cuts in line is justified….
D.  The only possible excuse:  was the first asshole on the way to the hospital with a woman who was in the process of giving birth?  (By the way, if that was the case then I’m really, really sorry for calling you an asshole.  Also, congratulations!)
E.  You’re just ticked because you know you couldn’t get away with it!

3.  I’m Sorry, I Don’t Have To Take This

I went up to a sales associate and started asking about a product.  In the middle of my question, the phone rang at her counter.  She held up a finger and answered the call, which judging from the content was neither pre-arranged nor from a supervisor, either of which I would have understood.  The entire time she was on the phone and I was standing there, she kept her finger raised.  Eventually, I raised a finger of my own (I actually did!  I’m so proud!) and walked away.  But really, I mean, I was standing right there.  How rude was that?

Survey of actual responses:

A.  Rude!  I get so mad when that happens to me.
B.  So rude!  Not to mention terrible customer service.
C.  So very rude!  And completely awesome on your part, by the way.
D.  Incredibly rude!  I’m amazed all you did was flip her off.
E.  So very, incredibly rude!  I’ll bet the person on the other end of the line was that asshole who passed everyone on the shoulder.

Results:

Mostly A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s, or E’s— I have no idea what it means if you got one letter more than the others.  That you think I’m overreacting?  That statistics are less meaningful than you think they are?  This really isn’t that kind of quiz.  If it makes you feel better, you can make up a reason that you got mostly B’s.  I’ll totally back you.

So leave a comment to tell me if my standards of seemliness are laughably lofty, or if these people were as devoid of propriety as a presidential candidate.  Am I being unreasonable or are they being rude?  Or is it a little (or a lot) of both?  You tell me!

[Image in public domain via pixabay.com]

Green Eggs And Ham: The Election Year Remix

dr-seuss-characters-clip-art-784089Here’s what happens when you get a call from a very persistent political pollster while you’re trying to read Green Eggs And Ham to your godchild:

Who will you vote for, Clinton or Trump?

Politics has hit a slump.
I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I could not be that big a chump.

Would you like Trump’s giant wall?
What if Mexico paid for it all?

I would not like Trump’s giant wall.
I would not like that wall at all.

What about Clinton on college tuition?
Her plan will only cost $350 billion.

I do not like her on college tuition.
I do not have $350 billion.

Do you like them in the polls?
Do you like their policy goals?
Do you like them on Facebook and Twitter?
Do their half-truths make you bitter?

I do not like them in the polls;
I do not think that they have souls.
I do not like Clinton or Trump.
I could not be that big a chump.

What if Clinton found those emails?
Would you like to know the details?

I do not think she lost those emails;
WikiLeaks already has the details.

Would you like them in the White House?food-green-eggs-300px
Would you like them in a courthouse?
Do you think she’s guilty of treason?
Do you think he’s abandoned reason?

I would not like them in the White House.
I’d only like them in an outhouse.
I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I could not be that big a chump.

Would you like them in a sketch on Late Night?
Would you like them in a fistfight?
Would you vote for them on The Voice?
Pick Trump! Pick Clinton! There’s no other choice.

I would not like them in a sketch on Late Night,
not even if they promise to fistfight.
Where did the third party candidates go?
Tell me! Tell me! I need to know.

Would you, could you, pay more tax?
Would you, could you, trust their facts?

I should not have to pay more tax.
I laugh at those who trust their facts.

Would you, could you, with Sarah Palin?
Would you, could you, with Liz Warren?

No way, no day with Sarah Palin.
I’m kind of afraid of Elizabeth Warren.

In the fall! In the fall!
Would you, could you, in the fall?

I would not, could not, in the fall.
I will not vote for them at all.

dr-seuss-clipart-sam_i_amI should not have to pay more tax,
I would not, could not, trust their facts.
Not with Sarah Palin,
Not with Liz Warren.
Not in the fall,
Not at all.

I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I want to take them to the dump.
They’ve turned me into such a grump.
Please, someone bust this political slump!

[all images are in the public domain]

Tax and Technicalities, by Rocky and Bullwinkle

I’m sure you all enjoyed tax season as much as I did!  Now here’s something I hope you’ll really like.  This post is what starts going through your head when you do your taxes while watching episodes of Rocky and Bullwinkle.  If you don’t know who Rocky and Bullwinkle are, a) this post will make no sense to you, and b) get thee to Hulu!  Also, sorry in advance to all Ke$ha fans.  It’s only a joke!

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image in the public domain

Melodramatic Narration:  When we last saw our hero, the Little Blind Moose-Girl, she was submitting the tax returns prepared for her by Rocky, the Squirrelly Accountant, of Fly-By-Night CPAs–

Rocky:  Hey!  You make it sound like I’m the villain of this blog post!

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Yeah, we only call him the Squirrelly Accountant because he handles all kinds of nuts.

Rocky:  I thought it was because I help you squirrel away your money!

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Well, if that’s it, how come you let me pay you in cashews?

Rocky:  Don’t feel bad; most people pay me peanuts.

Melodramatic Narration:  *ahem* As I was saying, when we last saw our hero, she had just submitted her taxes.  Little did she know, as she went back to her daily routine of rescuing small puppies and giving them to curly-haired orphans, she was about to become a pawn in the latest scheme of that villainous secret enemy agent, Grigory Gudenov, and his new partner, Ke$ha Fatale.

Gudenov:  So, Ke$ha, you are really secret agent, like me.  I should have guessed.  Are you related to legendary Natasha Fatale, who worked with my uncle Boris?

Ke$ha:  Yes, she is my sire–I mean, mother.  She is my mother.  But wasn’t your uncle’s last name Badenov?

GudenovYes; he is my mother’s brother.  My mother married into Gudenov family of government workers and changed last name, so her brother my uncle is not Gudenov.

Ke$ha:  You can say that again, dahling!  Now, what are Fearless Leader’s orders for us?

Gudenov:  Have you forgotten already?

Ke$ha:  No, but the blog readers have.

Gudenov:  We have crucial role in Fearless Leader’s greatest scheme yet.  After decades of failing to take over country by force, he has finally come up with foolproof plan:  he will get American people to elect him president!

Ke$ha:  But Grigory, the American people will never elect Fearless Leader as president.  He’s been trying to undermine their country his entire life!

Gudenov:  Ah, but you see, Ke$ha, he will be running as Tea Party candidate.  Is perfect disguise!

Ke$ha:  Yes, what a brilliant plan!  Ah, but wait:  the President has to be a natural-born American citizen, does he not?

Gudenov:  Of course!  Fearless Leader always carries gun, blames failure on underlings, and reacts with violence when authority is questioned.  What could be more natural-born American than that?  Now, our assignment is to get money for Fearless Leader’s campaign, and I, master no-goodnik that I am, have perfect fiendish plan:  we will pose as IRS agents conducting audits.

Ke$ha:  (gasps) IRS!  Audits!  Oh, no, Grigory, even we cannot be so evil.

Gudenov:  Is for greater good, Ke$ha, is for greater good.  After all, is not like we have to be real IRS agents.

Ke$ha:  That is true, Grigory.  We have to be able to sleep at night.  Now, tell me the rest of the fiendish plan.

Gudenov:  We will pretend to work for IRS.  We will tell people they owe us money and must pay right away or we will take them to gulag–I mean prison.  If anyone asks questions, we will say is part of new executive order.  No one will suspect we are not actual legitimately, and by time real IRS figures out plan, Fearless Leader will already be in office.

Ke$ha:  Now I understand why our hackers stole all those tax returns!  Grigory, how did you think of such a cunning scheme?

Gudenov:  Is all right here in Villain’s Handbook.  See?  Page 415.

Ke$ha:  I can’t read a word of that.

Gudenov:  Of course not–is written in Tax Code!

Melodramatic Narration:  Meanwhile, back at the offices of Rocky the Squirrelly Accountant, our heroes are facing what looks like certain doom.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  I can’t understand why I’m being audited.  I submitted copies of all the travel receipts.

Rocky:  I don’t know, Little Blind Moose-Girl, maybe the IRS isn’t sure what a “Professional Johnny Depp Whereabouts and Activities Blogger” is.

Little Blind Moose-GirlBut I included the transcript from the stalking trial!

Rocky:  Well, it says here that you owe them $86,753.09 and that if you don’t pay it right away, they’re going to take you to prison.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Prison!  It says that?

Rocky:  Yes, see there?  Right after the part where the word “gulag” is scratched out.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Can they really do that?

Rocky:  It says in the letter that this is part of a new executive order, so I guess they can.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Wow.  I must have missed that episode of “Schoolhouse Rock.”  I always knew not watching more television would come back to haunt me.

Rocky:  Oh, look, the auditor’s here.  Maybe he’ll have some ideas.

(enter Grigory Gudenov, dressed in non-specific law enforcement uniform and sporting a badge, a gun, a truncheon, a crossbow, some ninja throwing stars, an axe, several sticks of dynamite, and a spreadsheet)

Gudenov:  Allow me to introducing myself:  I am Officer Gregory of your IRS Police Department.  I am here to take away your money.  I am sure we can all agree, is better to do this with peacefully, yes?  No one wants to go to gulag–I mean, prison.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  You’re a police officer?

Rocky:  He must be; look at all those weapons!

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Well, Officer Gregory, your letter really surprised me.  I still don’t understand how I can owe that much in taxes.  I mean, that’s practically a year’s supply of Red Bull!

Gudenov:  Perhaps you would like to call my supervisor, just to be sure all is on up-and-up.  She can answer any questions you have.  Her number is on letter we send you.

Rocky:  (looking at letter)  Oh, yes, here it is.  Let me just give her a call.  (Dials number)

Ke$ha:  (on phone)  Hello, Agent Fatale speaking.

Rocky:  Hello, Agent Fatal, this is Rocky the Squirrelly Accountant.  I’m here with Officer Gregory, and I’m just calling to confirm that the Little Blind Moose-Girl owes $86,753.09 in taxes.

Ke$ha:  (still on phone) It’s Fatale, and yes, Mr. Squirrel, that is correct.  Moose-Girl must pay immediately or I am afraid Officer Gregory will have to take her to the gulag–I mean, prison.

Gudenov:  There, you see?  All is legitimately and above-the-board.  As for payment, I can take cash, check, credit card, bitcoin, gold, jewelry, authenticated antiques, or healthy organs.  I cannot take stocks or young children–too much risky for return on investment.  You are understand, I am surely.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  But I don’t have enough of any of those things to pay this bill.  Does that mean I have to go to the gulag–I mean, prison?

Gudenov:  Oh, that is unhappy to hear.  It makes me crying sad, this part of my job, to ruining lives of good people like Moose-Girl.  Are you sure you cannot pay?  Perhaps you apply for credit card?

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  No, I guess I’d better just go with you.  Do you have a gulag–I mean, prison–that can accommodate my disability?

Ke$ha: (still on phone) I beg your pardon?

Gudenov:  There is disability with Moose-Girl?

Rocky:  That’s right, if you’re going to take the Little Blind Moose-Girl away, your gulag–I mean, prison–must by law provide suitable accommodations for inmates with disabilities.  I learned all about it at a presentation the ACLU gave at lunch one day.  That won’t be a problem, will it?

Gudenov:  Oh, no, no, of course not, we love ACLU, is all perfect fine–oh, look, is miscalculation.  Moose-Girl does not owe taxes and there will be no need for ACLU to asking about disability person in gulag–I mean, prison.  Allow me to seeing myself out.  Have nice day!  (runs out, followed by dust cloud and sound of slamming door)

Rocky:  Well, that’s good news!  It’s nice to see that our IRS employees are so honest and conscientious.  Will you thank Officer Gregory for us, Agent Fatal?  Agent Fatal, hello?  I guess she hung up.

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  I didn’t know you’d been to a presentation by the ACLU.  Are you a member?

Rocky:  Oh, yeah.  I don’t know what I’d do without the Accounting Calculations Looker Uppers.  You know, I’d forgotten all about your disability, Little Blind Moose-Girl.  I wonder what accommodations the gulag–I mean, prison–would have to make for your blindness?

Little Blind Moose-Girl:  Who said anything about blindness?  I was talking about my antlers!

Melodramatic Narrator:  Have our heroes escaped the fiendish pseudo-audit?  Will our villains return to take the Little Blind Moose-Girl to the gulag–I mean, prison??  Or will our heroes have to face the even-more-fiendish ordeal of an actual IRS audit???  Stay tuned for our next episode, The Price of Lateness, or:  It’s High Time!

(Ke$ha Fatale:)

Product Review: Political Primaries

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Republican Primary Lineup December  2015 by DonkeyHotey https://flic.kr/p/BLphmC licensed by Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/legalcode

Here at iliketheworldfuzzy, we’re often asked to review products and offer our opinions on them for the benefit of our readers.  Recently, we were given the chance to review a product that’s been generating a lot of buzz in the media of late:  political primaries.  More and more people have started using them and, while results will always vary, we at iliketheworldfuzzy have worked with industry experts to test the product, explore the pros and cons, and review the alternatives, and we’re ready to share our recommendation as to whether political primaries are worth the purchase price.

Until lately, they’ve been something of a luxury product, which may account for the paucity of material on the subject.  Management overhaul, however, has recently focused on broadening the market, making a previously rarefied commodity available to a much larger demographic.  The question many are asking, and that we aim to answer in this review, is:  has that come at the expense of quality?  Disclaimer:  we at iliketheworldfuzzy were provided with this product free of charge, and indeed against our will, for the purpose of this review.  We will receive no compensation, though we have requested reimbursement for our time, pain and suffering, and lost faith in humanity.

First, a description of the product:  political primaries are marketed to children 18 and up and promise an exciting and interactive way to build a party candidate for a general election.  Unlike previous versions, in which the end result was designed almost entirely behind the scenes, this most recent prototype has a more Choose-Your-Own-Adventure feel to it, in which fans are encouraged to vote for the model they like the best.  Of course, the actual end result is still put together almost entirely behind the scenes, but the fan interaction brings a warm, almost sincere-seeming touch to the product while also promoting that holy grail of advertising, word-of-mouth, which is conveniently free of legal restrictions like accuracy and thus keeps the cost of the product to a minimum.  It’s a clever marketing ploy, but does the product deliver?  Here’s our verdict:

1. Pros and Cons

The most important question in a product review is, does the product do what it’s supposed to do?  The answer to this for political primaries is:  yes and no.  Political primaries promise to deliver a candidate for the general election, and most of the time, they do.  However, after repeated use, the quality of the candidates becomes highly unstable, increasing the potential for the product to catch fire or melt down during especially intense election years.  Though the Howard Dean model has been phased out since the infamous implosion incident, reports still come in about candidates becoming over-inflated and filled with hot air.  Journalists in particular should be aware of this danger, as most models react explosively to being questioned on their facts or on how they plan to implement their platforms.

Most disturbing is the potential of the product not to deliver a candidate at all; this happened with one of our experts while testing the product.  When we called the manufacturer, BigGov Corp, for guidance as to how to proceed after the product broke, we were told to send the model into their Brokered Convention Center for repairs.  Despite repeated requests for clarification, BigGov Corp declined to specify who was working on the product, what was being done, and what was actually wrong in the first place.  After several weeks, we received back a completed candidate for general election and, while the candidate was viable, it was not quite what our tester had in mind when she began the process.  To their credit, BigGov Corp did provide the promised result, but it’s clear that with political primaries, as with all market commodities, it’s buyer beware.

2. Quality and Ease of Use

BigGov Corp assures consumers that there will be no decline in the quality of political primaries as they expand their intended market.  To evaluate this claim, our testers pulled archival information on previous versions of this product.  While the current models appear quite polished and appealing, close scrutiny reveals flaws in character and rationality hidden beneath a thin coating of popular appeal that is unlikely to last past the first-ninety-days warranty.  Though no version has been completely free of imperfections, today’s consumers should not expect quality equivalent to the popular William Jennings Bryan model or to demand the Lincoln-Douglas debates from the product currently offered for sale.

In the positive column comes ease of use; this is where the new version really shines.  BigGov Corp’s recent product overhaul makes political primaries more accessible than ever.  None of the models we tested required a sophisticated understanding of economics, history, international relations, or reality, making this product perfect for those who are looking for an entertaining diversion that takes little to no analytical thinking.  Previous incarnations garnered criticism for the amount of independent research that consumers had to do in order to understand the issues raised, and many complained of headaches after putting in too much thought.  Today’s political primaries have no such drawbacks, and every candidate our testers developed had the ability to appeal to emotion and knee-jerk patriotism while entirely avoiding the pitfalls of logic and reason.  BigGov Corp has really done a remarkably good snow job in this category.

3. Alternatives

While BigGov Corp has essentially cornered the political primary market, lesser-known alternatives do exist.  Those who have a sensitivity to government or the rule of law may want to try caucuses, which are produced and marketed by private political parties and aren’t subject to most election laws.  Also gaining traction are third-party candidacies.  These have great appeal for those who have had bad experiences with BigGov products and come in a wide array of options.  The Green Party has carved out a significant niche market, as has the Libertarian Party, and indeed some enterprising consumers have designed their own third parties, with varying results.

The downside to third-party candidacies, however, is that the end products, while interesting to build and often exhibiting more colorful platforms than their more traditional counterparts, tend to lose power fairly quickly and do not often yield viable candidates.  Still, it’s a market to watch, and may be a worthwhile investment for those thinking long-term.

4.  Conclusion

As always with a product review, the question comes down to cost vs. benefit.  BigGov Corp, while it has made quite a few concessions in its attempt to broaden the appeal of its political primaries, is still selling a high-cost product when all is said and done.  The initial charge is relatively low, but an examination of the final bill includes a number of fees and surcharges not included in the list price.  Many consumers have decried the surcharge for fact-checking, citing the low quality of the truthfulness components in most models, and there’s been some controversy over the legality of the ultimatum fee, which charges the consumer to continue supporting their candidate in the general election “or else”.

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dog in suit by Matt Barber https://flic.kr/p/5Ga2Qr licensed by Creative Commons CC BY 2.0

Still, BigGov Corp is selling the must-have product of the season, and with all its flaws, political primaries do usually deliver on their promises.  We at iliketheworldfuzzy simply caution consumers to read the fine print, know what they’re getting into, and recognize that, while political primaries do produce candidates, they make no promises to produce responsible government officials.  For those who want to purchase a political primary from BigGov Corp and begin building a candidate, the product is available on their website at rightswhatrights.comm; for an easy transaction, have your desired model number ready.  Political primaries are shipped in discreet red, white, and blue bunting and can be purchased for the low, low price of your soul.

Famous Paintings Discuss Current Events: Apple vs. FBI

don__t_panic__iphone_style_3__by_viriiguy

Don’t Panic, iPhone style 3 by ViriiGuy on deviantart.com

I think this blog is past due for another installment of Famous Paintings Discussing Current Events.  As regular readers of this blog can attest, well-known portraits will occasionally drop by and express their views on trending news items.  Really, in times like these, what we need is the wisdom and insight that only peerless works of fine art can provide.  No, Donald Trump’s hair does not count, though it is certainly a masterpiece (master piece?).  I checked in with some of the leading paintings and found that what was foremost on their minds was the battle between Apple and the FBI.

What battle, you ask?  For those of you who have had absolutely no access to any kind of media for the past several months, a) how are you reading this blog? and b) here is the background on this issue  (if you know the background, feel free to skip down to where the famous paintings start talking):

After Edward Snowden disclosed that the NSA had access to user data on iPhones and could read almost all of the information on the phones, Apple developed such strong encryption for iPhones that Apple itself can’t extract the information from the phone if it’s locked.  This led to the pending court case in which the FBI obtained a court order requiring Apple to create a new operating system that will allow iPhone security features to be disabled.  Apple refused, arguing that the government should not require Apple to create a program that undermines the security of its own product.  The iPhone in question was a work phone used by one of the shooters in the December 2015 attack in San Bernadino.  The phone may or may not contain, among other things, information about a possible third shooter.  The FBI recently asked for a delay in the court case because an Israeli company may be able to hack the locked iPhone, thus exposing a potential security flaw while giving no indication to Apple or to millions of iPhone users as to what that flaw may be.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, here’s what famous paintings have to say about it:

Grant_Wood_American_Gothic

American Gothic:  Have you heard about the latest development in the court battle between Apple and the FBI?

 

 

small_PabloPicasso-The-Old-Guitarist-1903

Old Guitarist:  I’ve been following the case.  I can’t believe the government actually got a judge to order a private company to create a program that would weaken the company’s flagship product.  What’s next?  Is the NEA going to get an injunction to have someone repaint my guitar and make it electric just so they can hear me play Stairway to Heaven?

 

The Scream

The Scream:  It’s outrageous!  Big Brother won’t be happy until all activity on every smartphone, tablet, and computer is automatically reported to the newly-formed Department of Douche-Baggery.  How dare they!

 

 

most-famous-paintings-9

Whistler’s Mother:  Your position on this issue wouldn’t have anything to do with those pictures I found on your laptop the other day, would it, dear?

 

 

The_Scream

The Scream:  Hey!  That was ART!!  Those girls were OLDER THAN THEY LOOKED!!!  And STAY OFF MY LAPTOP!!!!

 

 

 

521px-Girl_with_a_pearl_earring

Girl With Pearl Earring:  But what about the need to strengthen national security, especially as acts of terrorism on U.S. soil continue?  Shouldn’t the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few?

 

 

small_PabloPicasso-The-Old-Guitarist-1903

Old Guitarist:  Yes, clearly what we need in such urgent situations is a protracted legal battle.  It will be so useful to find out four months after an attack that the shooter was a frequent visitor to LOLcats.

 

 

Grant_Wood_American_Gothic

American Gothic:  What puzzles us is the FBI’s latest request for a delay because they may be able to hack the iPhone.  If they could hack the iPhone, why go to court to make Apple create a new operating system?

 

 

Monalisa

Mona Lisa:  I think it’s smart for the FBI to keep trying to extract the information from the phone in case the court case goes against them.  What I want to know is, if they do find a way to get into that phone, what’s going to keep them from hacking into my iPhone?  I have some very compromising portraits on it.

 

small_PabloPicasso-The-Old-Guitarist-1903

Old Guitarist:  Hmm.  Suddenly I’m not quite so opposed to the FBI’s actions…

 

 

 

The Scream

The Scream:  This whole situation has me so worked up.  It makes me want to shout, or holler, or just…somehow…make noise….

 

 

 

521px-Girl_with_a_pearl_earring

Girl With Pearl Earring:  This is why we should elect Trump.  If we build that giant wall on the Mexican border and stop handing out green cards to terrorists, we won’t find ourselves in this situation any more.

 

 

Other paintings:

 

[speechless]

Grant_Wood_American_Gothic

 

American Gothic:  It’s nice that you’ll always be pretty, dear.  That will come in handy.

 

 

As always, all opinions are those of the paintings themselves and not those of the blog.  Is anyone else wondering if those compromising portraits on the Mona Lisa’s phone might shed some light on the meaning behind that famous smile?  And Old Guitarist, what a roué.  I would totally pay to hear him play Stairway to Heaven, wouldn’t you?  Due respect to Jimmy Page, whom I revere as a god among men, but Led Zeppelin as interpreted by Picasso sounds awesome!

 

How to rant effectively

Angry Penguin

Angry Penguin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m looking out for you guys.  I want you all to lead happy and fulfilling lives, and I want to spare you from the pain and trauma that exist around every corner in this world.  So here is today’s life lesson:

What with the election season heating up and all the controversy over transvaginal ultrasounds and Tim Tebow being traded and all the other drama going on in our complicated little lives, we’ve seen a number of very passionate monologues, dialogues, arguments, discussions, and flat-out rants lately.  They’re on TV, at home, at work, in church, waiting in line at the grocery store…you haven’t lived until you’ve had a gut-wrenching, no-holds-barred debate on Kim Kardashian’s marriage with the lady at the next table in the coffee shop, and then you realize at the end of it that not only have you never seen each other before that day, you haven’t even bothered to exchange names.

So because I want to help you on your path to spiritual enlightenment, here is my advice:  if you’re going to go on a rant, be it televised or otherwise, make sure you dress up.  I get a lot of free entertainment out of watching people go on television in bad suits and uncombed hair, giving longwinded diatribes on the proper method of vermin control or whatever hot button issue, but a rant inevitably ends up with the ranter sounding like a crazy person with his or her voice hitting that register that only other nutjobs can hear.  If your hair is all shiny and styled and your makeup is done, maybe you’ve got a particularly flattering shirt on, no matter how crazy you sound, you will still come off as reasonable.  This is because people don’t actually pay attention to the content of what other people say.  Politicians have been taking advantage of this fact for centuries.

This also holds true if you just happen to be in the lunchroom at work and someone wants to bring up the latest idiot comment that [Insert politician/celebrity of choice’s name here] said.  If you’re having a bad hair day, or your tie is loose or there’s a run in your pantyhose, you’re going to come across as disheveled and unstable.  If you’re all power-suited up and you’re wearing your diamond earrings and you actually bothered to curl your lashes that day, you can say whatever you want and someone’s going to nod along with you.  Ranting is all about image.  You don’t want to be the crazy-homeless-person-ranter.  You want to be the clever, witty, insightful ranter who could have your own television show if you weren’t too busy doing work that matters.

So there’s your life lesson for the day: rant with style and you, too, could end up with a special broadcast on Yahoo, filmed in front of a hand-selected audience who will laugh and clap sycophantically.  Or else you’ll just rule the lunch room.  If you haven’t managed to pull it quite together, bite your tongue and live to rant another day.  But always rant responsibly.  Here endeth the lesson.

Famous Paintings Discuss Current Events: Super Tuesday

As regular readers of the blog will know, several famous paintings have been known to come on the blog and provide commentary on current events.  The paintings have been muttering restively about the Republican primaries, so I thought I’d let them out of the box leading into Super Tuesday.

A quick rundown of the facts, since  talking artwork isn’t usually big on spouting statistics:  while not quite so super a Tuesday as it used to be, there are still 419 delegates at stake tomorrow, with 1144 needed to clinch the nomination.  Mitt Romney currently has a healthy lead over Rick Santorum, and everyone else trails woefully far behind–but a sweep on Super Tuesday could put anyone back in the mix, so it’s still fun and games, even if I doubt anyone will lose an eye.

Now, without further ado, Famous Paintings discuss Super Tuesday:

Mona Lisa:  They just don’t make Super Tuesdays like they used to.  Come to think of it, they don’t really make presidential candidates like they used to.  Ah, that William Jennings Bryan, there was a man who could give a speech!

 

 

The Scream:  I know, and now they expect us to get excited about Mitt Romney?  “Ooh, Mitt Romney can fix our economy!  Ooh, Mitt Romney’s a businessman, he’ll clean things up!  Yeah, he’ll clean up all right.  How much is he worth now?

 

 

Whistler’s Mother:  I like that Newt Gingrich fellow.  He’s a firebrand.  He’ll shake things up.  And what a nice young man, so protective of his mother.

 

 

The Scream:  You know he’s on his third wife and proposed an open marriage with his second wife, right?

 

 

 

Whistler’s Mother:  Well, dear, I’ve had an arrangement with Van Gogh’s self-portrait for several decades now.  People have urges.  It’s nothing to be ashamed of.

 

 

The Scream:  Oh, God.  Oh, God.  That bastard.  I can’t take the mental image.  I feel like I need to yell, or shriek, or just…somehow…make noise….

 

 

 

Girl With A Pearl Earring:  I like Rick Santorum.  I know he’s not the sexiest candidate, but he just seems so dependable and sensible.  And he’s right, not everyone needs to go to college to have a rewarding and fulfilling life.

 

 

Old Guitarist:  You realize he’s a lawyer with an MBA, right?  He actually has more advanced degrees than Barack Obama has!  And he may be from a steel town, but I doubt he got any closer to blue-collar work than walking past construction sites on his way to work as a lobbyist.

 

 

Mona Lisa:  Does anyone else miss Ronald Reagan?  I mean, I know he drove us into an unprecedented deficit situation, but when you saw him onscreen, you really believed he was the President.  The man had presence.

 

 

American Gothic:  We’re just going to wait until we’re told who the candidate is for the Anyone But Obama party and vote for that one.  Super Tuesday, as far as we’re concerned, is just known as That Annoying Day With No Good Television.  Talk to us again in November.

 

 

Boy, that Old Guitarist is quite the liberal, isn’t he?  And who knew that Mona Lisa was a Reagan supporter?  And that Van Gogh’s Self Portrait, always causing problems.  As always, the views expressed are those of the portraits themselves, and not of the blog in general.  Happy voting!