Archive for April, 2011

15
Apr
11

Easter vs. Greaster

So, this post is going to be pretty irreverent in a moment, so let me start with the reverence. I celebrate Easter, and do so with more than simply the big bunny and a basket of treats for Little Girl Blue. I may be a bleeding heart liberal, slightly kinky, foul-mouthed Christian, but I am Christian all the same, and as far as I’m concerned, Jesus died and took all sins past and future onto himself to be our guide and to be the bridge between humans and the divine (though, interestingly to some of you, perhaps, I don’t think he’s going to make worship of him a prerequisite for admittance). I don’t take the entire Lenten season all that seriously, though I try to use it as a time for more spiritual reflection and Christ-oriented contemplation.

However, while I take Easter seriously as well as calorically, I also figure that after more than 2,000 years Jesus is well over any post-traumatic shock from his crucifixion. Plus, I figure God has a pretty wicked sense of humor. And thus I hope I will be able to skate by the rest of this post without thunderbolts crashing through the roof and turning me into a crispy critter.

You see, one of my online pals…one of my tweeps…is one Rebecca Moi aka @bexmith on Twitter. And she decided to forgo any Lenten celebrations this year and decided to celebrate Kent instead. Well, it occurred to me today that Kent needs to be codified, much like Festivus was in “Seinfeld,” and so I will set forth an initial primer in this post. (If you are not familiar with Lent and Easter celebrations, particularly by Catholics, you might not appreciate the humor…that is, if it’s actually funny to begin with…if the Pope chastises me I’ll know that it was hilarious to everyone else outside the Vatican)

The Season of Kent and Celebration of Greaster

The weeks leading up to Greaster Sunday are known as Kent. It is unclear whether this is recognition of the combination of quiet banality and hapless nerdiness that is Clark Kent, secret identity of Superman (as the season is a celebration of things both human and superhuman) or simply that the fact that the founders of Kent and Greaster got their good weed from a guy named Kent Rawlings. In any case, during Kent you are encouraged to pledge to give something up for the entire Kenten season until Greaster is over, but to cave in within six days and double the usage of whatever it was you gave up to begin with.

Alternately, you may choose to simply skip the giving up of anything and pick up a new vice to indulge in during the entirety of Kent.

There are some notable days during Kent, the most important and final of which is, of course, Greaster.

Rash Wednesday

The celebration of Rash Wednesday, which happens early in the Kenten season, typically involves the temporary reddening of one’s forehead to simulate a rash, but more importantly is a day during which we reflect on all the rash decisions we made since the previous Kenten season and then pick out the most humorous or disastrous one and repeat it before midnight.

Strolly Thursday

As the day of Greaster looms near in a few days, you need to burn off some calories, so please take several long walks on this day. You are encouraged during these walks to give money to any homeless people you may pass, help the elderly and children to cross the street, and to trip any annoying hipsters or loud teenage douchebags who get too close to you.

Wood Friday

Of course, you should celebrate the glory, lifegiving powers and long-lived solemnity of trees on this day. That is, if you don’t have any knowledge of what “wood” really means in the grand circle of life. If you do, get to making the nasty boot-knocking stuff and whittle away at that wood. If you are a lesbian couple, get out (or purchase) a strap-on surrogate…your wood, of course, will last a lot longer, you lucky bastards…

Greaster Sunday

There is a more commercial side to Greaster that involves the Greaster Bunny, who leaves take-out containers with fried food in them. Curly fries are a common gift left by the Greaster Bunny, but fried mushrooms, hush puppies, mozzarella sticks and Buffalo wings are also popular.

On the more spiritual side, it is a day for meateaters, vegans, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, fruitarians and almost all others (except for macrobiotic nutcases) to come together at a single table and commune over the holiness of all things greasy and fried, from deep-fried Oreos (a traditional starting appetizer) to fried green tomatoes to chicken fried steak to vegetable tempura and egg rolls (and more).

Some of the more carnally oriented celebrants of Greaster whose passions were not slaked by Wood Friday might celebrate other uses of things greasy.

Happy Greaster!

13
Apr
11

Screw You, Arianna Huffington!

So, I heard yesterday that a lawyer is suing on behalf of the some 9,000 people who produced content, largely for free, for The Huffington Post, to get some recompense subsequent to Arianna Huffington selling the site to AOL for $315 million.

Now, many would say (and many actually have) that the writers knew they were writing for free and were doing it for the exposure and shouldn’t expect any kind of payment.

Well, as much as I respect Huffington’s efforts to balance out increasingly insane conservative nonsense with somewhat less crazed ideological shouting from the leftward end of the spectrum, they do deserve something and she’s a greedy wench if she doesn’t give up some money.

Yeah, that’s right, I’m slamming a liberal. I’m not lock-step when it comes to that. I may lean left but I’m not a brain-dead zombie-like follower.

The fact is, Huffington would have had nothing to sell if not for the content produced by those writers.

Nothing.

She built her site on their backs, which was fine when she did it, but when she decided to cash in, they should have gotten consideration as well.

I mean, would it kill her to take $10 million or $20 million out her windfall (less than 10% of the total take) just to hand out $1,000 to $2,000 (on average) to each writer, based on how much he or she contributed?

The notion that she’s going to just walk away with the money and give no regard to those who did the bulk of the work is shameless. Simply shameless.

Not to mention an example of how shallow, self-centered and greedy people can be whether they are right-wing or left-wing (or in between).

13
Apr
11

Truths From John Kyl

You know, I’ve sort of gotten used to U.S. politicians, primarily the Republicans but especially the Tea Party folks, spouting out random, made-up, pulled-out-of-their-ass-with-no-regard-for-reality statements to support their arguments.

Need to discredit President Barack Obama’s citizenship and U.S. birth status? No problem. Do what Sarah Palin and Donald Trump have done and say that he’s paid more than $2 million in legal fees to fight calls to see his birth certificate (which he long ago produced by the way) so he must have something to hide. No reason to point out that he’s actually paid more than $2 million to a legal firm for all of his legal work related to his presidential campaign and just being president, of which spurious claims that he’s not a citizen are one small part of the pile (John McCain had to pay well over a million dollars in legal fees just to tidy up post-campaiging matters, and his campaign wasn’t as big as Obama’s).

Want to make sure you can squeeze out every last penny for military spending and making sure that the ultra rich and big corporations continue to get ever richer while the middle class is shredded to bits? Just say things like, “Planned Parenthood shouldn’t get any federal funding because more than 90% of what they do is abortions.”

Wait? What? No, really? You said that, Arizona Senator John Kyl?

No matter that only 3% of what they do is abortions and the rest are health issues like breast exams, pap smears, and STD testing, plus contraceptive-related services. What’s an 87-percentage-point difference among rabid, lying idealogues who will stop at nothing to get what they want?

So, yeah, while I thought I had seen it all, the GOP manages to decline even farther.

But you know, since we’re going that route anyway, how about I help John Kyl with his next set of talking points:

  • The government shouldn’t give any money at all to public radio because 90% of their funds are spent arming extremist Muslims in terrorist attacks on the United States
  • All funding of the arts by the federal government should cease because 90% of that art involves two men making out with each other while walking all over an American flag and pissing on a crucifix
  • Anyone with tan-colored skin (unless from a tanning booth or sunbathing) should be shipped across the border to Mexico without bothering to check their citizenship status because 90% of all Latinos in the country are guilty of illegal immigration (and it’s all Mexico’s fault)
  • All black males should be placed in prison once they reach the age of 16 because 90% of them will rape a white woman after kidnapping some white babies and selling crack to white schoolchildren right before cleaning the weapons they used to kill a bunch of upstanding white guys.

No need to thank me, Senator Kyl. Just helping you with more material you can use to advance your cause and then say afterward, “That wasn’t intended to be a factual statement.”

Oh, and senator, it takes a lot fewer words to say: “I was shamlessly lying.”

12
Apr
11

Can’t Be Any Worse Than Snooki’s Book

I’m going to be honest with all of you: Deacon Blue was a stab at a marketing hook.

I am a deacon (though not currently in service as one), and the personality and views I’ve brought to this blog are all my own, but the creation of the Deacon Blue persona was something I had hoped might catch on a bit more. I mean, we have “Dear Abby” and “Miss Manners”…we have Dan Savage with his sex/relationship advice and books…we have Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse…you get the idea. These are real people but they are also overblown personae.

I figured, “Hey, I’m a writer. I can be witty and insightful (as long as I’m not trying to do it while talking). Why not create an approach that might catch some attention?”

How many snarky, nerdy, liberal, swearing deacons have you seen out there trying to engage with the masses?

Well, as you might guess from the lack of self-promoting of book deals or radio appearances…or even an alleged affair with Angelina Jolie or Salma Hayek (shit, I’d settle for being rumored to be connected with Kate Gosselin if it would get me a book deal)…well, I haven’t hit the big time. Or, really, even the small time.

I came out of the closet with my real name and face (though I still won’t come out of the closet with my kinky erotica-writing persona), and still, I haven’t gained any traction.

Not that it’s stopped me from keeping this blog around and being on Twitter and such.

But it is disheartening to see people like Snooki from “Jersey Shore” get book deals and big money to speak at universities just because they are willing to act a fool in public and on camera. Especially when your wife (that is, my wife) jokingly reminds you that you should tap into your inner white conqueror type and figure out how to be the guy who gets paid $22,000 a day sometimes for social media consulting or the person who gets a three-book deal out of their blogging.

Mind you, she was joking. Lightning can’t strike for everyone. But still, it makes me think: What do I have to do to get paid for the level of skill I bring to the table? And let there be no doubt: I may second-guess my writing sometimes and I may generally be humble, but I know I’m better than at least half the people out there with publishing deals. (Even if I don’t realize it until well after I’ve written whatever the hell it is that I needed to write for whatever purpose I wrote it for…paid or otherwise).

So, I think I’m going to start working on my book. Would like it to be a fiction novel, but that’s an even more fickle market than most. So here it is:

How to Succeed Through Masturbation

Or, Nice Guys Don’t Finish Last; We Slip Away from the Race Course to Slash the Tires of the Douchebags Who Run Fast

Publishers, start sending me your proposals about how much you want to pay me and how soon you need it done.

10
Apr
11

As You Were…

Many thanks to those who commented on my last post, which has been removed for various reasons. Your input and support is welcome and appreciated. I’ll be on to something less maudlin and perhaps less personal next time.

Until then…

02
Apr
11

Zombie Apocalypse Planning Mode Engaged

The longer that the unhinged and sociopathic people are allowed to set the tone and influence the agenda of the modern Republican Party, the more often I look at buildings and facilities with an eye toward how well they might shelter and protect my family and friends when civilization collapses.

Because with people like Michele Bachmann, Scott Walker, Glenn Beck, Paul LePage, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin and Rand Paul (just to name a small handful) in positions of authority and influence, the more I see everything ending in a zombie apocalypse, super-flu plague, nuclear winter, general decline into tribal anarchy or something else along those lines.




Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley

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Jeff Bouley

To find out more about me professionally, click here. To find out more about me generally, click here.

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E-Mail

You can reach Deacon Blue/Jeff Bouley at deaconbluemail@gmail.com.

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For my public profile, click here.

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Tales of the Whethermen

My superhero fiction blog, click here

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Raising the Goddess

My parenting blog, click here

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For more about images used on this site, and copyrights regarding them, as well as usage/copyright information about my own writing as posted here, click here.

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