World Domination Update
“Placebo di Milo”
vol. V, iss. v
“The Voice of one crying in the wilderness”
In this issue:
Secret Word of the Day: Free Range Chicken
Site of the Week: The Phobia List
Barbecue Sauce of the Month: Cactus Carl’s Spicy Saguaro
Now Playing: actually, nothing! I’m enjoying the sounds of silence.
· Jihad, American Style
· More Gumby’s Rebuttals
· The Ranch Manifesto
· Penny Gnomes
· Mathematical Misogyny
· Ask Evil Matt
· Death of a Hedgehog
In this issue:
As we continue our downward spiral into absurdity, I’d like to take a moment to thank all the people who yet again harkened to our crusade of “think for yourself” by pointing out that it is you, dear reader(s), who makes this issue possible with your sympathy and support.
Unfortunately, the focus of reader feedback seems to increasingly dwell on Ranch Dressing and Gumby’s Pizza, as opposed to World Domination. But hey: if that’s what you’re ‘thinking for yourself’ about, so be it! I don’t control your synapses, and should be spanked if I did.
And no, that’s not a cry for help (Stiner, put yer paddle away!)
Sooooo, before we devolve into culinary and condiment conundrums, let’s take a moment to critique current events...
Jihad, American Style
Seems I spoke a bit prematurely last time when I wondered at the lack of conspiracy community contributions regarding the 9/11 assault. Theories are starting to trickle out, though they are surprisingly sparse and disappointingly predictable.
On the Far Right we find the expected cries that it was The Illuminati (eweige blumenkraft!), using this as a smokescreen to launch the New World Order. Reverend 451 passed on the more unusual of these, more in amusement than seriousness (though the Alice in Wonderland quote is a nice touch.) Due to length I will sublist it for who need a bad laugh.
However, even more extreme is the idea posited by the Reverend Jerry Falwell on a recent episode of The 700 Club, where he blamed God Himself for this disaster, as Divine Retribution against groups like the American Civil Liberties Union and the Supreme Court for allowing abortion, homosexuality, and such to persist in America. Per Falwell: “God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.” “Jerry, that’s my feeling,” ’Club host (and former Presidential candidate) Pat Robertson enthusiastically responded. Falwell went on to add that the ACLU has “got to take a lot of blame for this,” again winning Robertson’s eloquent agreement: “Well, yes.” Falwell also blamed the Federal Courts, who he said were “throwing God out of the public square. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way — all of them who have tried to secularize America — I point the finger in their face and say, ‘You helped this happen’.”
Moving on to the other end of extreme, to the Left of Center we seem to see a predilection that the attack was carried out by undercover Israeli agents. Not surprisingly, this theory is carrying considerable coinage in the Arabic world, where they apparently have a problem believing that there might be such a thing as a militant Islamic suicide bomber who hates America. Cited as “evidence” is a claim that the day of the attack, “4,000 jews” called in sick at the World Trade Center, presumably having been tipped off by Mossad beforehand. Unfortunately, no explanation is offered by the purporters of this preposterous postulate on just how Israeli Intelligence “tricked” 19 Arab Muslims into carrying out the deeds, and of course one is also hard pressed to reconcile in this light the Al Queda statement that the terrorists did “a good deed” as being praise for their enemy Israelis.
Theory-wise, my personal fave comes from Taliban Major Domo Mullah Omar himself, who said that the attacks were launched by Americans themselves as an excuse to beat up on Afghanistan.
Believe it or not, I’m going to have to side with Occam’s Razor on this: “the simplest solution is the most correct.” Of course, that in no way means that I don’t think there’s some subversive shenanigans going on...
Although I ostensibly approve of our latest war, I must shake my head in bewilderment at the side effects. Am I the only one disturbed by what seems to be “mandatory patriotism”? The American flag has been reduced to a fashionable hood ornament by people who, on the majority, had no sense of nationalism on September 10th and would be hard-pressed to name all the Presidents or even find Afghanistan on a map. Don’t get me wrong: I’m glad to see people finally take pride in their country, but I think it’s almost embarrassing that it would take something of this magnitude to make people appreciate their own nation.
Unfortunately, things in that respect have gone a bit too far, with it being the new taboo to speak ill of our military excursion in the name of “patriotism.” Recently, Bill Mahr on “Politically Incorrect” was censored for speaking his mind about this, essentially saying “how cowardly is it that in the past our response is to lob cruise missiles from a thousand miles away?” He’s got a point, but such attitudes are now verboten. So much for the First Amendment.
Worse, the New Rules granted the government in regards to criminal investigations are one step short of scary. “Officially,” these are “only” to apply to “terrorism and treason.” Unfortunately, few people seem to understand just how flimsy the nomenclature is. Remember the Fourth Law of Branch Floridianism: “all things are subjective.” One man’s “terrorist” is another man’s “freedom fighter.” There really isn’t much difference between, say, an Islamic Jihad activist and the Nicaraguan Contras, except that U.S. tax dollars funded the latter.
Making matters worse, Bush recently lobbied for, and was granted, the right to try terrorists in a military tribunal. This is a massive matter with implications towards civil liberties, especially since “terrorist” is an amazingly vague term. “Treason” also falls under this category (invoking the old “Fifth Column” theory), but unlike “Terrorism,” “treason” does have a legal definition.
“Treason” is defined by the Constitution (Article 3, section 3) as “giving aid and comfort to the Enemy in a time of war.”
By that criteria, George W. Bush himself can be tried for treason, as I’m sure Al Queda takes great comfort from the fact that we have a complete ass in the Oval Office.
Bush clearly didn’t think out the parameters of this “War on Terrorism” because, as I just pointed out, “terrorism” is such a loose, ambiguous term. If America is now targeting governments that harbor terrorist networks, as we are in Afghanistan, then by the same criteria we have to attack Ireland. Likewise, many Outbackers commit what are essentially terrorist aggressions against the indigenous Aborigines, to which the Aussie government turns a blatantly blind eye; should the United Stated attack Australia? This war is opening a whole slew of scary precedents, and it is painfully obvious to those in the know that most of it is a smokescreen that selectively chooses its criteria.
Again, don’t get me wrong: I am for any war against any extremist faction that insists “I’m right, you’re not” and seeks to forcibly impose its viewpoint on unwilling masses. Then again, with that criteria, once we are done with Islam we have to turn our attention on the likes of Rome, Salt Lake City, and Lynchburg, Virginia.
Still, things seem to be going well militarily, ostensibly at least, thanks in no small part to America’s using the Northern Alliance as front-line cannonfodder. Of course, we are still no closer to shutting down Al Queda as a whole, but the flashy headlines and sound bytes seem semi-effective in distracting the masses from this fact.
Unfortunately, this is a war on two fronts: battle lines, and headlines. Regarding Vietnam, Nixon had spoken of the importance of “winning the hearts and minds” of the people (to which an anonymous GI replied, “fine; let me win your hearts and minds, or I’ll burn your Goddamn huts down.”) In terms of that: winning the p.r. campaign, America is doing damn poorly. It would help if someone would supply George W. (or at least his speechwriters) with a thesaurus, so he can start describing the “enemy” as something other than “evildoers.” yawn. One must suspect that W. is going for the Joseph Goebbels Big Lie stratagem of “say something often enough and loud enough and eventually the people will believe you.” Unfortunately, this is not happening: look at how the rest of the world sees us, and that becomes painfully apparent.
In terms of that, it is almost refreshing to turn to some non-American sources of information about the current campaign, both to get the “whole picture” and a counterbalance to our own often absurd press propaganda. Finding out what’s really happening in Afghanistan is a chore, especially when limited to North American media. The worst offender is CNN. The cable station is useless anyway—look at their format and you’ll see what I mean. Only the upper right quarter is devoted to the newscaster; the top left is a barrage of out-of-context quotes, the entire bottom is a teleprompter ticker of completely unrelated “happenings.” One can only assume that the flash-fire technique is marketed towards M-TV Generation Y’ers with ADD. On-line, things are not much better. CNN.com is only marginally more useful.
In this respect, I’ve been surfing some of the Arabic sites for information. While less sophisticated, the difference in point of view is quite intriguing. Of course, I frequently disagree with their opinionations, but of course Branch Floridianism is about Thinking for Yourself(!) so I merely read the content and draw my own conclusions.
For those of you interested in doing so, here is a by no means complete list of resources:
If you don’t think Osama bin Laden goes far enough, there’s always Al-Jazeera (which, unfortunately, requires fluency in Arabic.)
Some interesting sights (with English content) include:
Of course, there’s a huge difference between what “they” say is going on and what “really” is, but again, “THINK FOR YOURSELF!”
Still, if you want my opinion, my favorite source for info of late has been NPR. Fairly even-handed coverage, but among the song sniplets they play between segments I actually heard not only Zappa’s “Duke of Orchestral Prunes” but “Black Nakkins” as well!
I enjoyed the update.....you are far more articulate, caustic and witty than I ever was......you make me proud.
A thought.......everyone has been saying "shame on the F.B.I.......why didn't they know more about what was about to happen?" Well, maybe if Congress hadn't been so obsessed with spending hundreds of millions of dollars and hours of manpower on examining the stain on Monica Lewinski's skirt they might have! Can we now get our priorities straight?
A fellow teacher (from England) suggested that .....everyone knows that the Aribic sdtates know exactly who the terrorists are and WHERE they are, we should say to them to turn them all over to us within 24 hours or kiss MECCA goodby. Since they aren't really allies, but rather have their loyalties with their religion, it will probably come to a Holy War sooner or later, so we should make ourselves clear.......they have declared "no holds barred", so should we.......thoughts?
I absolutely agree with you comment about “priorities.” However, the idea of nuking Mecca as cooperative incentive is impractical, as I believe they’d call our bluff on it. This would spark the Holy War to end all Holy wars, and with over a billion Muslims in the world, it would get damned messy damned fast. Remember that Pakistan has The Bomb too, and they’d unhesitatingly redirect them away from India and do unto us as we did unto Mecca. Sorry, but Safeway doesn’t sell sun screen 9,000,000. Besides, your timing is off: wait 40 years, until they run out of oil. Then take ’em to school.
The Latest from Waco
In the early morning of October 26th the Federal Courthouse in Waco burned to the ground. The cause of the fire has not immediately been determined. Said courthouse was the scene of the multiple trials of Branch Davidian survivors (both suing and sued by the Government) and the courtroom of presiding judge Walter Smith was completely destroyed. Oddly, just a few days earlier, the McLennan County Detention Center in Waco also caught fire as inmates set fire to mattresses and clothes, allegedly in protest to the poor food.
Of course, we know what’s really going on...
As most of you know, the Arizona Diamondbacks spanked the Yanks in the World Series.
It is unclear who was more upset over this: Burning Sensation (our Manhattan Member) or saint.
True to his previous threat, saint seems to have pulled up roots and has been absent since that tragic day when championship sports came to ’zona. It is unclear where he is currently (his weekly emails are ambiguous) though my guess is that he is following up on my previous work to set up base camp in Mongolia. After all, there are no sports in Mongolia, unless you count the Yak Relay Races, and the Olympics (word around the herder campfire is that Mongolia is putting together a kick-ass figure skating team...)
I read your little write up on [sports] and I can honestly say that I agree with the BP to the masses thing to an extent (the masses are generally idiot cattle), but totally disagree for those that are just genuinely interested in competition and do not have the skills to achieve what the "Pros" can do. My drive for sports is not always about what team dominates, but for the love of the game and the thrill and adrenaline rush that "sport" or competition creates. I like my team to win, but can appreciate the game in and of itself at any point. It is your analogy to war that makes the thrill of Sport such a worthwhile way to entertain your mind. It also serves as an excellent bonding tool for masculine males without having to talk about personal feelings or stupid women shit. Thus, pro sports are a fantastic communication tool for (I will streotype here) hetero men. A love for the game is not that we don't have a life, but that through sports we are able to be in touch with something beyond the mundane routinue of life. I spend nothing really (occassionally a tshirt or hat), but my time on sport, but have spent a great deal of my talent becoming an expert DSS hacker. I get 500 channels and every game brodcast anywhere for $0/mnth because I love sport and I especially love free sport. I can set up a package for you for around $750 and after that you will have no more bill. It is a package valued at about $4,000 per year and I have been running for over 2 years.
All Branch Floridians should give heart-felt “wekkums” to the latest among our ranks, Torch. Torch bears the distinction, so far anyway, of being the only member whose Branch name is the same as his Birth name.
Ahhhh, having hippies for parents...
Also joining us as Minnesota Liaison is Ignition Missionary, who innocently did a Google search for “sodium pentathol” and found our “wake up and smell the sodium pentathol!” recruitment banner. Per I.M., “It peaked my interest to say the least...and then to see that I can’t think for myself without the Branch Floridians help...well I just couldn’t resist querying the biggest oxymoron I’ve ever read...”
Brain Police Virus?
The following was an email (with nasty attachment) sent to the ‘saintsays’ inbox:
This is obviously a flagrant attempt by the Brain Police to infect the Branch Floridian web server with a virus. Suspicious of strangers with candy attachments, I had Norton Antivirus scan the mysterious MVC-0075.zip.bat and sure enough, found it was a thinly disguised copy of W32.Sircam.Worm@mm.
I wrote a biting rebuttal to the nitwit who sent this to me, but got a ‘mailbox is over the quota’ MailerDæmon.
Here’s what puzzles and bothers me most about this. I have never heard of this mysterious “Jesse Hook,” though demonstratably he knows me. More to the point was the address he chose to send to. The ‘saintsays’ mailbox ( ) is an admittedly obscure one, set up in WDU 4.3 The W32.Sircam worm operates by replicating itself to everyone in Outlook’s Global Address Book. So what the hell was ‘saintsays’ doing in this loser’s G.A.B.?!?
Whatever the case, this is brazenly a flagrant attempt by the Brain Police to infect the Branch Floridian web server with cyber-cooties.
Despite being officially retired two goes ago, the latest Branch Floridian Quiz, “Pop Goes the Quiz-el” was released in late October. After getting a hand-full of responses, all entries suddenly stopped. This despite several claims from members and kindred spirits that they had partaken of the poppage.
I have since sent several “test” responses in myself, and true enough, they have still not arrived in the Quiz in-box. I can only assume Brain Police interference, and offer my condolences to quizzers who tried in good faith to take it. You are, of course, welcome to resubmit answers .
Evil Matt does have an alternate theory as to the problem, though. The last entry to come in was taken by someone calling themselves “Ranch King.” Although DK would be the obvious guess for the true identity, there is compelling evidence that this is actually his Minnesota lackey Pears. It is quite possible that his answers were so coated with ranch dressing that it gummed up the server, preventing any future responses to come in.
Readers will note, by the way, the lackluster (and almost universally wrong) answers submitted by said “Ranch King.” Further proof, if any was needed, that Ranch rots the brain.
saint’s main squeeze, FireSkunk, has yet again incurred the wrath of the Branch by committing her second major sin against our commune. It’s bad enough that she previously admitted, “I don’t know how to use a lighter.” But recently I went over to her place and found in her ’fridge, not one but two containers of (ugh!) Ranch Dressing!
Equally evil, she had no barbecue sauce.
I called shenanigans on the last. So, what does she do but go out and but a flimsy bottle of bbq that has, as its prime ingredient, the totally unKosher Paprika.
Adding insult to injury, Safeway recently ran a special on Doritos: buy a bag and get the second free. Rather than stock up on the new “Doritos Extreme Bold Barbecue” she gets two bags of “cooler ranch.”
All that’s bad enough, but this self-professed Mistress of Uncoordination has secretly developed a skill at darts, winning numerous matches of 301 against both saint and shade. Something is clearly amiss in the Land of the Skunk.
Nice newsletter, one problem though.
DK is not, never was and never will be the leader of the RanchPenensulars. Realizing this flaw in our beauracratic hierarchy it occured to me that there is a vacuum at the top which needs filling. So I, Trigger, hereby declare myself leader of the Ranch Penensulars.
Futher I declare you, Shade, as unfit to lead the Branch Floridians. My reason? I cite the sixth amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America. Seeing this void I have chosen to act quickly and decisivly; I hereby declare myself as leader of the Branch Floridians. This puts me in a position Napolean once found himself in and I have chosen to follow in his footsteps.
Seeing as I am now the leader of the free thinking world I declare myself The Holy Emperor of the Ranch and Branch.
You can now refer to me as Holy Emperor, His Omnipotence or, simply, God.
Don't worry, this should not effect your daily activities. I have deemed your writings worthy of my name so you are free to continue publishing your work. The only difference is that you must submit all future World Domination Newsletters to me for my approval. Faliure to do this will result in banishment from the Hound and total annihilation of all sources of your beloved (albeit disgusting) BBQ sauce.
Good job cooperating.
Your supreme master,
Thanks for the update praise. We suspect you are correct in saying that DK is not the actual head of the Ranch Peninsulars. Obviously, DK couldn’t create something like the R.P. on his own (ranch dressing being proven to dull creativity and cause impotence,) & we have long suspected he is merely the puppet/figurehead/scapegoat behind whoever the real power-to-be is. Thus your claim to the Ranch throne power vacuum is nullified, as you overthrew the wrong head of government.
As to challenging me as head of the Branch Floridians,
1.) Branch Floridian bylaws #666: any position of authority requires the screening/drug test for ranch dressing, which you would flat out fail.
2.) we do not have a “leader” but a “first among equals.” [this inability to understand B.F. hierarchy in itself invalidates your claim.]
3.) Our 1st among equals in not myself [another fatal flaw of your claim] but saint.
4.) I forwarded your email to saint for consideration. saint’s reply was that your claim to B.F. leadership under the 6th amendment is itself also voided by said 6th amendment. #6 grants the right to confront a witness. Since you are not here in person to make your claim of leadership, your assertion is baseless.
5.) I also asked Evil Matt about this, and he agreed, shaking his head sadly and saying something about “ol’ boy’s been doing shots of ranch again, hasn’t he...”
In the interest of fair play (ie: think for yourself) I will post your email in the next Update on the offhand chance anyone wishes to defect to your little schism. However, since I actually own the legal trademark of “Branch Floridians,” if you were to use that in the name of your heresy at all, you would have to pay royalties of a pitcher of beer per use.
Since it is well-established that you never buy rounds, that should effectively end that.
We’ve had problems with Trigger before: he was the first person to write in and actually defend Gumby’s Pizza. However, this lame claim to leadership is just too much, so his Branch Floridian mailbox has been revoked. Interestingly enough, DK also disavowed association with him, and officially excommunicated him from his own heretical condiment cult.
Yet another busy issue for the Gumby’s Pizza Hate Page, with the in-box getting several more testimonials to the foulness of these Cheeseless Fiends. Due to length—both of the e-pistles themselves and this Update Issue, I will simply summarize and hot-link to the specific postings on the sub-site. Read at your leisure.
Pizza Feedback #1
We already knew that Gumby’s didn’t know the difference between shit and shinola, but a random reader offers proof that they don’t know cinnamon from sour cream, either.
Pizza Feedback #2
A surprising reply from a Gumby’s Delivery Plebe, who felt the need to respond to my site in general and several of the pre-posted horror stories in particular. His letter is worth excerpting:
Gumby's is a relatively large chain of pizza joints around the country that exist only in college towns. There are about 5 main owners of the corporation. And since the corporation was started in Gainesville, all 5 of those guys work in that store. Now, when those guys travel around in pairs to the other stores, most people find them to be the most ridiculous set of folks around. They walk around and re-correct every activity of the people working in the store, even to the point of not allowing you to open the pizza box before the intended pizza is completely out of the oven. Banality at it's best. Also, since they have profited so wonderfully from the investment in Gumby's (re: shiesty cheese amounts) they are also the wonderful blend of cocky. So, picture it, cocky, rich to show for it, and critiquing mostly aptly-abled drivers just to have something to do for a day. My point being, is that when all of them congregate in one store, it really must be hell on earth.Other than that, your site hit it right on the nose.
(read this rant in full.)
More on the Gumby’s/Ranch Peninsular Crossover
“Growing up as a kid, I never liked cheese.” — DK
Boy, talk about a smoking gun statement!
As most of you know, my favorite term for the Gumby’s crew are “Cheese Nazis.” Those on know know grok there’s even evidence that this may be closer to home in the case of a former manager. However, we now have yet more compelling evidence lending verisimilitude to the moniker ‘Gumbys Dairy Gestapo’ and linking the whole thing to the dreaded Ranch Peninsulars!
DK’s heritage is, of course, German, and while recently going through his old family album, a rather suspicious picture surfaced, hand labeled “Uncle Heinrich at Hamburg Rally”...
Even if you’re new to all this, it should be obvious reading this far into the Issue that we Branch Floridians are at odds with a rival heresy called the Ranch Peninsulars. Dominant among their deranged dogma is a bizarre belief that ranch dressing is somehow considered yummy stuff. Obviously, Branch Floridians know the truth: Ranch is the Anti-Christ of Condiments, but we ’Floridians never let someone’s “thinking for themselves” fault them, even if such thinking draws up such obviously wrong conclusions.
DK, the head of this heresy, has long been lusting to extract cyber-revenge by pleading his pathetic case to the masses, in vain hopes of persuading people to some alleged merit to this hideous dip. Well, at last he’s gotten off his ass and crunched out a long, rambling, and thoroughly misguided missive to make his case.
Recently he handed over the original draft of this manuscript, drenched with a crusty white substance that I can only hope was ranch, and I must admit, I was puzzled. It made numerous threatening references to the U.N., used bizarre spellings such as “mamatos” and “piscetti”, and ended by just repeating “screw saint!” over and over.
However, a second attempt on his part was marginally more mature in its methodology, so we’ll go with that. Hey, this issue’s running short, and I need to pad it out...
Never let it be said that Branch Floridians do not allow alternative thought-space for dissenting ideas. After all, to know what’s right, you have to have an option to choose from what is wrong, too. So, in the interest of equal opportunity air-time, here, unedited, is...
The Ranch Manifesto
Shade and I were sitting at a local tavern tonight shooting darts and debating United States foreign policy when the barmaid dropped off my order of a dozen mild buffalo wings accompanied by two (2) plastic thimbles of the King of Condiments – Ranch Dressing. My taste buds had just begun to salivate when Saint walked through the door. It was apparent that he had been out drinking with his cronies – probably for quite some time – and it seemed inevitable that I would end up in some sort of godforsaken argument about barbecue sauce/Ranch dressing supremacy. He sat down beside us, and after the typical cordial niceties, sure enough – he initiated a seemingly endless, alcohol-induced verbal assault on the Center of the Condiment Universe. This was nothing new. At this point in the epic three-year battle, the logic on both sides had become crystallized – with each person’s sentences practically scripted or finished by the other.
“Enough of this nonsense,” I said.” I will write a short essay for publication in The Update which will expose you for the fraud that you are.”
“Surely,” Saint slurred, “you are not serious. Although I admire your audacity, your sinister motives will be completely transparent to the people I associate with.”
“You’re playing with Fire,” Shade warned me.
“Very well then,” I countered. “ I am not asking you for anything fancy. No favors. No free meals. Simply access to your audience.”
He acknowledged and accepted my ambitious project with hesitation, like a soldier sitting in a bunker with live grenade. I could see in his eyes that he truly believed that this drunken decision could be the Apocalypse of an extremely intricate network of Branch Floridian planning, and plunge him into the depths of an Abyss from which he would never surface. The night ended a few hours later and we parted company.
I picked up a small pie at Gumby’s and headed to my secluded desert compound and notified Pears (of the Northern Chapter) of Saint’s foibles and my impending project. “He is a fool,” responded Pears. “Certainly he feels threatened by Ranch, perhaps he even enjoys the stuff himself but is afraid of losing credibility among the Branch Hierarchy.” He laughed. “I have no idea why you will bother with such an undertaking when you know Goddamn well that bastard will twist your words around or add his own – making you seem like some illiterate scoundrel from the back alleys of some depraved place like Hoboken or Memphis.”
In fact, I would not be surprised in the least if that yellow-bellied pervert edits this thing to shreds or worse, discards it completely. He is probably outside my window right now, sitting in a tree with powerful binoculars and running a full-time surveillance operation on unsuspecting Peninsulars and their work. Managing the global network of Ranch Peninsulars is an extremely taxing job, especially for a quasi-professional operative with no outside funding, but I am blessed with tremendous background experience, and I know a few top-secret shortcuts that simplify the process enormously. But the last thing I need is some covert, outback Floridian reconnaissance mission targeting my efforts here and abroad.
Pears was right. But all I could do was continue and hope that Saint would allow me the opportunity to address his audience without worrying about some obscure cut-and-paste passages about sex with hyenas or references to my mother. All I needed was uncut access to the forum and Ranch Peninsulars everywhere would be involved in a Nixon-goes-to-China event in terms of scale. Surely, the message would be profound.
Paranoia aside, I was offered the opportunity to join the Branch Floridians upon my arrival to this desert three years ago and subsequently declined for personal reasons. I specifically avoid affiliating with any “group”, electing to recognize the effect group persuasion has on the individual thought process. Highly regarded social psychologists have studied the phenomenon for decades, drawing bold conclusions on “Group-think” in places such as Nazi Germany and elsewhere. In any case, I believe most groups are counterproductive to one’s individuality and politely refused membership into Saint’s clan by “thinking for Myself”.
Aside from that, we seemed to have very few things in common in terms of taste. Music, cigarettes, beverages, and (especially) condiments. My group advocates the diversification of ones pallet in order to make an informed decision as to which sauce is best for you, while Saint maintains a steadfast, closed-minded attitude that barbecue sauce is the Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread and Ranch is undeserving of human consumption. Some people enjoy both, and that is fine. I impose no black/white separation between the two, unlike my counterpart. In fact, when Ranch and barbecue are mixed together, the result is a surprisingly tasty treat. Make no mistake, I like barbecue sauce. There are very few things more appealing to me than enjoying a rack of Chili’s baby back ribs or grilled chicken with a splash of Open Pit or Bullseye. I would be hard pressed, however, to name three other entrees or appetizers that go hand in hand with barbecue sauce.
This is where ranch is vastly superior – versatility. Originally concocted as a sauce to make lettuce taste better, it has now become the King of Condiments. Pizza, chicken, popcorn, onion rings, mozzarella sticks, celery, hamburgers, sandwiches of all kinds, and ice cream are only skimming the surface of an ocean of foods that are delightfully complemented by the delicious sauce. It is indeed more than just a salad dressing.
In addition to his reluctance to recognize Ranch as the Michael Jordan of Condiments, Saint will be the first to admit that Time has Passed him By. Take for instance his taste in music. The man has not listened to anything new for close to 20 years (he completely ignores mainstream radio) and I would go as far as saying the latest compact disc he purchased was originally released on either 8-track or vinyl. When taking this into account, it is no wonder that he has never even tried Ranch Dressing since it has only seen widespread exposure and distribution since the mid 1980’s. Put simply, he is afraid. Afraid of anything new that could potentially disrupt his routine of Quaker Oats, the Reader’s Digest, and Matlock re-runs. Indeed, the Peninsulars are on the cutting-edge of society’s taste in condiments and I too would be afraid if I shared Saint’s archaic mindset.
Furthermore, mandating that all Floridian’s consume only BBQ not only reeks of communistic, totalitarian undertones, and it more importantly contradicts the very fabric of the organizations existence – think for yourself – or so the rallying cry goes. Why can’t Branch Floridian’s decide for them selves whether or not Ranch is The Rolls Royce of Condiments? Are you afraid that your followers may actually enjoy Ranch? If so, what happens then? Excommunication? Public execution? A man of such hypocrisy is impossible to take seriously. He, at the very least, doesn’t deserve a say in what sauce you elect to put on your buffalo wings.
Branch Floridians, you are doomed with a character such as this behind the wheel.
It is for this reason that the Ranch Peninsulars were formed Many of you are in complete agreement with me, others will probably litter my web site and e-mailbox with vicious hate- mail and childish remarks. I welcome your feedback and, perhaps, your allegiance.
For more information on us, visit our website and if you have any questions or comments …..
For those of you wondering, that scraping sound you heard while reading that tripe was the bottom of the barrel: DK is obviously desperate at this point, and grasping at straws like a barfly during last call.
First of all, ranch dressing on ice cream?!? What kind of sick savages are we dealing with here? Even I wouldn’t put barbeque sauce on ice cream (okay, maybe vanilla...)
I am equally disturbed that these fiends actually have their own web site now. What’s the Internet coming to? This used to be the private playground for us intellectual elite, but now the ’Net has hit a new low. This is a textbook definition for Roadkill on the Information Highway.
However, back to the point of barbeque versus ranch. Barbeque Sauce is a time-tested tradition that dates back over four hundred years. Ranch is the upstart newcomer whining for its fifteen minutes of fame.
Here is the proof in the pudding on that, and the nail in the coffin for any alleged claims of Ranch supremacy. “Barbecue” derives its name from the Spanish word barbacoa, first making its appearance in English in 1665. “Ranch”, as in Ranch Dressing, was originally concocted in the mid 1950’s at the Hidden Valley Guest Ranch in Santa Barbara, California. The specific, original formula (upon which all imitators are based) was actually bought by the Clorox Company, and is used in the “Hidden Valley” brand(s) to this day.
The Clorox Company is more commonly known for producing a brand of bleach.
Bleach is a toxic white liquid that, if imbibed by humans, will kill you.
Need we say more?
but enough of this tripe!!! Let’s get back to World Domination...
Goliath and the Grassy Gnoll Revisited
I was reading your commentary of the David and Goliath story. I noticed that the passage in my Bible has added, in italics, the words; "the brother of". Perhaps there is no Hebrew word for brother...or maybe the cover-up continues...
2 Samuel 21:19 "And there was again a battle in Gob with the Philistines, where Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim, a Bethlehemite, slew the brother of Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam."
Ten tons of flax for Punxatawny Phil! This is why it’s always best to Think for Yourself rather than rely on someone else’s word for things, in this case ol’ boy whipping out the Bible and checking the verses.
Based on his comment, I did a bit of research m’self, and the results were surprising. About half of the English translations (notably the NIV and NRSV) cited the verse as I had originally (without the “brother of”) but the rest (such as KJV and NWE) did include it. Obviously, the only way to settle this was to go to the original Hebrew.
Sure enough, it’s “brother of Goliath” (highlighted in red for the Hebrew-illiterate).
The Penny Gnomes
The following was to saint shortly before his disappearance.
In the early 1960’s, British Prime Minister Harold Wilson denounced “all the little gnomes in Zurich and the other financial centres about whom we keep on hearing” as being behind the Pound Sterling’s deflationary difficulties, and decried that said gnomes had more power than any government in Europe. Most people have assumed that Wilson was referring collectively to the banks in Switzerland, although conspiracy researcher Steve Mizrach believes this was a veiled allusion to the Grand Lodge Alpina, the largest Masonic society in Switzerland. Perhaps most revealing, in one of the last public speeches of his life, JFK claimed he would “...expose the Gnomes of Zurich,” to which a few conspiracy theorists attribute as the real motive for his being Oswalded.
P.M. Wilson’s financial paranoia aside, however, the Gnomes are indeed a commune of actual gnomes, living in a cave deep beneath the Swiss Alps. Their mission is to steal a penny from every person in the world, hence Wilson’s belief that they were undermining the English economy.
certainly makes as much sense as it does cents, though Evil Matt thinks this is
suspiciously similar to a South Park subplot and suggested saint
lay off the chili before taking a nap.
Mathematical Proof that Women are Evil!
This was passed on to me anonymously; I cannot take credit for it or vouch for its accuracy.
First, as any man (or lesbian) who’s dated knows, a Woman requires Time and Money:
Of course, as Ben Franklin pointed out, Time is Money:
Now; according to 1st Timothy 6:10, “Money is the Root of all Evil”:
which cross-cancels to...
or, Women are Evil!
But you already knew that... didn’t you...
Ask Evil Matt
The Evil One fields your queries, as channeled by Sister Ob’dewlla ‘X’.
Q: "What is "hotdog-flavored chicken?"
A: It is proof that ranch dressing should not be included in any home-made marinade.
Q: What is the difference between "bigamy" and "polygamy"?
A: “Bigamy” is marriage to two people at the same time (“bi” = “two”) where “polygamy” is marriage to many people at the same time (“poly” = “many”.) Bigamy is thus a subset of polygamy; all bigamists are polygamists, but not all polygamists are bigamists. There is also an understanding implied in the distinction: polygamists are all aware of the situation, where-as the spouses of the bigamist are unaware of the other party. Compare also “monogamy” as ‘marriage to only one person’ (“mono” = “one.”) Perhaps Erica Jong said it best in her book Fear of Flying: “Bigamy is having one spouse too many. Monogamy is the same.”
Q: How long
would it take one person to eat an entire cow?
A: This is a toughie, based on two variables involved. Obviously, there’s how much the person normally eats (ie: “shade level” of one meal a day, vs. “Mr. Creosote level” as dramatized in Monty Python’s Meaning of Life) and, more importantly, just how much of this “entire cow” you are willing to eat (ie: brain, lungs, etc.) Rather ironically, I had this very conversation with a friend of mine a few short days after receiving this question, and ol’ boy had done just that: eaten an entire cow. He said that his family (mom, dad, he, and his brother) literally filled up a large freezer with various cuts and chops of a whole bovine, and partook of it five days a week (allowing weekends for something different.) I would classify him as “average” in dietary intake, and he said it took them a little over eight months to polish off the cow. If this is any indication, I would answer your question with “about three years.”
Got a question? .
The Hedgehog Corner
By Harriet the Hedgehog
Death of a Hedgehog
We are sad to announce that, in
early October, Harriet the Hedgehog passed away. Sisbooomba, the Keeper
of the Holy Hedgehog, sent the news with this official press release:
We are sad to announce that, in
early October, Harriet the Hedgehog passed away. Sisbooomba, the Keeper
of the Holy Hedgehog, sent the news with this official press release:
I have sad but not unexpected news. Harriet passed away this weekend. She rallied for a while and then just lay down on a heating pad I gave her and went to sleep. I believe it was old age as I have had her for about 6 years and she was an adult of unknown age when I got her. Take comfort in the fact that NO hedgehog ever had a better or more pampered life....what other hedgehog ever owned and had the run of a 3 bedroom - 2 bath house with hot and cold running crickeets and mealworms on demand? She was the BEST and I thank her for her little life- I know it was a good one.
I found just the right place of honor in the backyard and she will forever be here.—
While tragic, saddening news, we should point out that death will hardly slow Harriet down, and we expect her to continue the Hedgehog Corner in future issues. After all, Evil Matt has been dead since the Waco fire in ’93 and he’s still going strong. Sister Ob’dewlla ‘X’ has already offered her services to channel in future Hedgehog Corner columns from Harriet, and hopefully we can expect an interview on the Hedgehog view of the Afterlife next issue.
Those wishing to offer condolences:
Trust no one
and Always keep your lighter handy!
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