Darwinism in the 21st Century – Revenge of the Dolts


Ronald Reagan and a leprechaun (or so he thinks).

 

It started in 1980 when Reagan was elected. That year the average Stanford-Binet IQ score decreased nationwide for the first time since the test was introduced in 1916. It would never rise again: the dumbing of America had begun. The phenomenon spread to Europe two decades later, then Russia and now India. China is next.

When historians chart the intellectual decline of America, they will say it began in the South, specifically Alabama and Mississippi then moved to Georgia and on to Florida. It was from Florida where the seeds of imbecility spread across the world. Vacationers went to Disney World, walked Daytona’s sandy beaches, or attended the most virulent infestation of idiocy in the country, a Marlin’s baseball game.

In some, stupidity exploded immediately – they bought a time-share in Ocala or invested in Everglades resort properties – but most carried the malaise back to their homes, where over three generations it worked relentless destruction.


I am not Walt Whitman.

How could this be? Darwin’s laws of natural selection promote the strong and eliminate the weak. That process, over ten million years brought us to where we are. Sure, we had our Atilla the Huns and Adolf Hitlers, but still – on the average – we are smarter, live better and much longer than the Homo erectus from whence we came. With bigger brains, our lot improved.

But then came Reagan and the dumb became dumber and increased their number.

Now on one level, the American idiot does follow parts of evolution’s extinction process. The brainless don’t live as long as people of average intelligence. Stupid people do stupid things: They smoke cigarettes and chew tobacco. They drink beer until they can’t see then hop in a car and run into a telephone pole. They ride motorcycles without a helmet. Many have guns and regularly shoot themselves or their families or their friends just messing around. Most could care less about such life extenders like education or health care.


Do not drive or operate heavy machinery after taking
.

When the president says drink Clorox, they drink Clorox and die. They try to rub the nose of a sleeping alligator so a friend can snap their picture for Facebook; the next thing you know, the sheriff is slicing into the gator’s belly to pull out the body of the nose scratcher so the coroner can take a picture for his mug file.

This all this adds up to a short lifespan and, theoretically, gradual extinction. Yet the number of stupid people is increasing. WTF?

The answer is that the dumb are enormously fecund. In Louisiana, it is common for five generations of a family to sit down on a Saturday afternoon and watch NASCAR. Babies, mothers, grandmothers, great grandmothers, great great grandmothers (some also cousins) gathered around the big screen TV while the men folk sit in the basement around an even larger TV drinking beer and passing about each other’s revolvers. The stupid multiply faster than rabbits in their first thirty years, spend the next ten doubling their weight, then start dying. They die young but leave quadruple the offspring that normal people do.

So what happens now? Do the clueless simply take over the world? There is no good ending here. The Corona virus brought a glimmer of hope that the morbidity rate of the stupid would increase. They distain masks, social distancing, and love to congregate in bars and churches. Sadly, the death rate has only increased for those over sixty and by that age, the dolt’s reproduction cycle has completed.

There is a solution albeit an unpleasant one. Average people simply need to fuck more. Yep, fight fire with fire – except the part where you copulate with your cousin, sister, or other close relative. If the normal create more kids, and the dumbs keeping voting for politicians like themselves, natural selection will prevail. We are talking generations. Yet it is a story you can proudly tell your grandchildren and great grandchildren and (if you do it right) great great grandchildren while they all watch baseball together down in the basement.


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Bobby Dee, Where You Be?


I met Bobby Dee twenty-four years ago in Boca Raton. He was a Line Chef at the Lotus Blossom which, at that time, was Boca’s only Thai restaurant and one of southern Florida’s best. A white guy cooking noodles and stir fry? That’s what I thought too.

It was a favorite story that Bobby loved to tell, usually over a Tequila straight up with a twist. Here’s the short version: Bobby signed up for six-year hitch in the Air Force after high school. See the world on Uncle Sam the recruiter said. He saw it – Lubbock, Texas; Camden, New Jersey; Macon, Georgia – the finest of America’s wonderlands. But he ended his Air Force hitch at a small base outside of Bangkok. He fell in love with the country – the people were great, the food wonderful and you could live pretty darn good on not too many dollars. He decided to stay.

He talked the Air Force into discharging him in Thailand. He had become friends with an expat named Jerome Reynolds and moved in with him. It wasn’t hard finding a job washing dishes at Bangkok’s swanky Yan Wawa restaurant. Jerome spent the next ten years acquiring Asian calligraphy art and Bobbi moved from the restaurant’s wash room to line chef. That’s when they decided to move back to the states. Jerome opened an oriental art gallery in North Palm; the owner of Yan Wawa knew the sous chef at Lotus Blossom where Bobby ended up running the stir line for the weekend dinner shift.

Bobby and I were introduced at one of Jerome’s art gallery openings. By then, Jerome was making a killing in the calligraphy business – he had zero competition in southern Florida, just at the time Asian art collecting became de rigueur for America’s wealthy, most of whom had a winter home on the strip of coast between West Palm Beach and Boca Raton.

Bobby was a great story teller, a big baseball fan and made fiery hot Kua Kling. He worked most weekends so we went to Marlin day games every chance we got. The Marlins were as bad then as they are now which gave Bobby and I plenty of time to swap tales and sip warm Pabst Blue Ribbon.

As the early aughts began to dodder, Jerome became disenchanted with the calligraphy business in Florida. By the end of the decade, there were a dozen galleries along the Gold Coast plying champagne and Beluga to New York old money or Texas crude ingénues as they fawned over million dollar Yaun piss pots.

In 2011, Jerome and Bobby pulled up stakes and moved to LA. Jerome said though the city teemed with Asian art dealers there even more Asian art buyers – the pickins were good. Jerome bought a condo in West Hollywood (naturally), opened at glitzy gallery on Wilshire and Bobby got another chef job at the Bamboo Rickshaw, a huge touristy Thai restaurant in Hollywood.

Bobby also stopped drinking. He lost his license on a DIU and his boss told him he could pack up his knives if he turned up drunk again. That sobered him up. Plus Jerome had become sick. Seriously sick. Like leukemia sick. So Bobby joined AA and Jerome started chemo. They both struggled, but after two years Bobby was dry and Jerome cancer free.

I travelled to art auctions in LA every couple of years. Jerome loved WEHO and loved showing off all its garish glamour and ritzy restaurants. WEHO made Miami look like an Amish cross-road in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Bobby and I took in both Angles or Dodger games, whoever was in town and playing a day game. He still loved to tell his stories as the innings languished between pitches but now he drank coke and shelled peanuts.

Jerome died in January 2019. He was cremated. Bobby had a memorial service for him that February which I flew in for. Jerome and Bobby had hundreds for friends in LA and they all showed up for the service. Jerome always said he belonged to the frizzbetarian faith so in that spirit, Bobby rented the Etage in WEHO and wrapped the whole place in silver bunting, giant candelabra and a hundred strobe lights.

The formal service was short. A dozen people came up to the stage with some story about Jerome this or Jerome that. It was sad and tender. Bobby spoke at the end. His remarks were very brief. “Goodbye to my best friend, my lover, the best part of me that can never die.” Then he pointed to stage left and shouted “bring in the band.”

The band came in, platters of food came out, and three bars scattered around the room poured out drinks. I left fairly smashed. This was the way Jerome would want to go – a bunch of gay friends dressed to the gills, a loud rumba band, and everybody presumably talking about him.

I only spoke with Bobby for a few minutes; he was swamped as person after person relived a piece of Jerome’s life. Red eyed and woozy tired, he drank soda all night.

I called Bobby last Monday. It was his birthday. His life had moved onto a new routine – Kundalini yoga, volunteer work at the North Hollywood drop in center, and still cooking at the Rickshaw. The condo was up for sale – Bobby couldn’t afford the monthly fees plus it wasn’t home anymore. He was planning to get a small apartment in another part of WEHO.

Nobody answered the phone. I called again late Tuesday morning. A woman named Sarah answered the phone. Sarah worked at the Rickshaw too, ran the bar and hostess table. Bobby was dead. He had started drinking again a month ago and it kept getting worse and worse. They found him Sunday night on the stairwell going up to the condo. His blood alcohol level was .24. The rest of the tests weren’t back yet. There would be an autopsy tomorrow.

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Ten Rules For Living In These Times

  1. Stick it in your pipe and smoke it.

    Pipe smoking went cheesy a generation ago. In 1960, Drug stores sold a dozen varieties of pipes and double that number brands of tobacco.  Sartre sold more pipes than Peter Yarrow did records.   Now nothing.

    Everyone clamors for social distancing. Buy a pipe (less than $20 on Amazon), some cheap tobacco and smoke away.  No one will get within three yards of you.  Especially the wife and kids.

  2. An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

    Johnny Appleseed lived to be a 103 and there was plenty of cholera going around the forest in those days. Cholera makes the corona virus look like sniffles in a TB sanitarium.  How did he do it?  Apples.  He ate at least three every day and you can too.   So far, they haven’t been cleaned out at the grocery, though, if you eat three every day, you’re gonna need some more of that toilet paper.

  3. A stich in time save nine.

    Got big holes in your underwear?   How do you think that’s going to look when they snip off your pants in the ICU?   Enough said.

  4. A dog is a man’s best friend.

    Dogs don’t get corona virus.  You keep them fed, they’ll lick your hands, nuzzle your face and snore quietly next to you in bed.  Better than a wife these days. Especially when you’re smoking the pipe.

  5. Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you.

    Conflated version of the original – ‘do unto others before they do unto you’.  Timely advice when you see any trace of a paper product at the grocers.  Pasta and rice too.  Grab all you can and don’t worry about the old lady who says she’s on her last box of noodles.  Odds aren’t with her anyway.

  6. A watch pot never boils.

    This one actually works.  My mom calls at least twice a day asking me if I am still feeling alright. If I have so much as a stuffed nose, she calls back in two hours.  Smart right?  If you’re watching for it all the time, the disease is gonna wait; its game plan is to surprise you like a bowling ball to the head.  But the corona doesn’t know my mom.  She endured Dad for twenty-five years; outlasting a virus is nothing.

  7. “In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is Freedom, in water there is bacteria.”

    Ben Franklin said that (they had smallpox AND the plague when he was around); it was as dead-on then as it is now.  Viruses can’t live in alcohol.  If you drink enough booze to raise your blood-alcohol level to at least .15, the crap ain’t gonna hurt you.   But you have to keep it there all the time which makes driving to the liquor store problematic.  Of course, if they deliver, you got it made.

  8. God helps those who help themselves.

    See ‘Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you’.

  9. I got 99 problems but the bitch ain’t one.

    That’s what Jay-z thought about Beyoncé until the unfortunate incident in Albany with two frat girls after the concert.  With corona, the bitch is always a problem.  Either you will give to her (‘look what you did to me, you son a bitch’ every day and more when you don’t meet ‘her needs’.  From her mother too.  Every fuckin’ day.) or she infects you (‘leave the keys out before you go’).

  10. I’ll fuck anything that walks.

    Eminem penned this line 21 years ago.  Still works today. You’re probably gonna die.  Soon.  So go big and enjoy everything you ever imagined.  Men fucking men?  Women making out with women?  Group? Don’t trash talk it if you haven’t tried it – now’s your chance.  That 300 pound gnome down the street?  Think he’s got a tiny penis to go with the belly that looks like he swallowed a basketball?  Give him a bearhug and reach down his pants.  The old grandma looking person who sits at the freeway entrance with the sign that says ‘Help me. I homless’, the one with only one tooth?  Give her a pint of vodka a big French kiss. This is your time dudes and dudesses – enjoy.  Think of the stories you can tell loathsome teenagers when you get old.  If you get old.

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Kroger Fresh

Nov 6 – The Kroger Co. revealed a new logo today and a “fresh for everyone” brand transformation campaign that the company said celebrates its love for customers and associates, a food-first culture and a long history as America’s favorite grocer. The campaign will include new in-store signage and animated figures that the company is calling “Krojis” (Kroger emojis) that will help deliver the marketing message. American Grocery Association – Daily News Brief.

krog6

We returned to Cincinnati for Thanksgiving. My sister lives there and she was doing the big dinner. Arfie and I flew in Tuesday evening to enjoy some of Ohio’s cold wet November weather. We gave thanks that we’d return to North Miami in three days.

Arlene, my sister, was doing a classic Thanksgiving Day dinner with turkey, mashed spuds, walnut dressing and Iroquois style succotash (which means mixing corn and lima beans with red peppers then frying the whole thing up in butter until it’s a nutty brown). Arlene got roped into being a parent adviser at the local grade school PTA. They were selling pies for their fall fundraiser. Arlene bought six of them. What we didn’t eat, she threatened to send home with us.

Wednesday’s dinner was a strip down affair. Wendy, my other sister, and I were going to take over kitchen chores while Arlene build her energy for the morrow.

Wendy was never known for haute cuisine. She planned to make pasta in tomato sauce which is exactly what it sounds like – boiled spaghetti drenched with Kroger’s finest canned tomato sauce. “The secret to eating it,” advised Leonard, her significant other, “is to take a little spaghetti cover it with a small amount tomato sauce and cover the whole thing with as much Parmesan cheese that you can find. Then eat a lot of rolls.”

It was the holidays and I was feeling both generous and hungry so I said, “how about if I make a couple of pizzas to go along with it. We’ll have an Italian night just like the pilgrims did in 1761.”

Both Leonard and Arlene jumped on this especially after they figured out that ‘make a couple of pizzas’, actually meant ‘buy a couple of pizzas.’ How could that go wrong?

So off Leonard and I went to the neighborhood Kroger’s to see what we could find. If you live in New England, the Deep South or the Southwest, Kroger’s not a store you have probably ever shopped at. Here in the Midwest, it is the only store you can shop in.

Two weeks before Thanksgiving, Kroger kicked off a national rebranding of their stores with something called “Fresh For Everyone”. The ‘Fresh For Everyone’ theme consisted a bunch of cartoon characters cleverly tinted in light and dark colors, with females equaling males and everybody looking pretty damn straight. Kroger called them Krojis (like emojis, get it?). Above the ‘toons smiling faces were words ‘Fresh For Everybody’ in big letters. The theme, says the Kroger’s marketing release, ‘celebrates its love for customers and associates, a food-first culture and a long history as America’s favorite grocer’, three assertions certain to astound anyone who has ever shopped at Kroger.


Well I might be just a yahoo from Florida, but when I saw the word ‘Fresh’ I thought ‘Fresh’ as in our food is fresh. Based on the little smiley faces, I figured ‘Everyone’ meant Kroger was proud to serve anyone no matter their race or gender (providing you were straight and not Asian).

If you’ve ever shopped for vinyl replacement windows, you’ll have noticed that the companies with the poorest customer reviews have the most pictures of the American flag in their advertisements. Perhaps you’ll see DISCOUNTS FOR VETERANS in big letters at the top of the page or goofy slogans like ‘Have you hugged at Vet today?’ or ‘Proud to Sell Only American Made Products’ at the bottom. That’s the first rule of advertising: when you have crap, wrap it up in an American flag and call it magic wampum. Most people ignore the reviews and fall for the flimflam. We want to believe the glitter and what could be shinier than a big American flag?

The same thing applies to Kroger. From my experience at Kroger, ‘fresh’ as in fresh produce, dairy products or meats, has nothing to do with the word’s definition in Webster. Fruits are more bruised then not, lettuce wilted, milk on its last sell date (and uncannily goes sour the day after that), and meat has a decent chance of smelling fetid when you open its package. Stale food has long been a hallmark of a Kroger store but when you own the market like they do in Cincinnati, well you can do that.


The Kroger advertising people aren’t stupid. They know their customers think the food stinks. So plaster the stores with a new slogan – Fresh For Everyone. Let people assume ‘Fresh’ refers to the food you sell. Say it enough times, people may believe it in spite of the banged up tomatoes they are rummaging through.

Leonard and I settled on Kroger’s Deli Pizza. They are the kind you bake yourself for that homemade flavor. The only ones in stock were ‘Meat Lovers Pizza’; the toppings purported to be sausage, pepperoni and Canadian bacon. Well yum. We figured we could dress it up with some mushrooms, onions and extra cheese. I bought two.

While Wendy was boiling the tomato sauce, I spiced up the deli pizzas with the veggies and cheese. They looked pretty good going into the oven. Leonard beamed as he uncorked a couple bottles of Merlot.

The pizzas took twenty minutes for the crust to brown and the cheese get bubbly. Wendy kept the spaghetti boiling until the pizza came out. It was a little soggy but as Leonard said, put enough cheese on anything and you have a great meal.

Leonard started his third glass of Merlot as I sliced up the first pizza. It was perfect – crisp crust, crinkled onions, everything slathered in cheese. Leonard put it on a pizza stand and took it into the dining room.

I swirled around the second pizza to find a good cutting angle. As I turned the stone, some brown liquid dripped out from one edge onto the counter top then to the floor. I grabbed a paper towel and sopped it up. It was the color of used motor oil.

As the pizza cooled, the oozing stopped. I gingerly lifted up edges of the pizza looking for the source. It was all coming from the right side but I couldn’t pinpoint exactly where. But it stopped after I slipped more paper towels under the crust. I figured when I sliced it, I’d find the where the brown goop was coming from.

I never did. I cut the pizza into eight pieces. There were dark spots on the crust of two pieces but the heat of the pizza stone must have allowed the liquid to either evaporate or get sucked back into the crust.

When Leonard returned, I showed him the blackish paper towels. “Maybe we should just throw it out,” I said.

He replied, “Are you crazy. Have you seen the spaghetti? There’s nothing here that can be worse than that. Besides, baking it for twenty minutes should’ve killed anything that’d make you sick. Let’s eat.”

The deli pizzas were the hit of the evening. I even had a piece from the second pizza after trying to eat a plate of the spaghetti. Leonard was right, Kroger could probably have put turpentine on the thing and it still would be better than over cooked tomato sauce poured on top of gummy pasta.

Thanksgiving was two weeks ago. I am back in Florida. We don’t have any Kroger’s here so it is easy for me to say I’ll never buy another thing from them again let alone a Deli Meat Lover’s Pizza. But I will always be perplexed. What could they have done to it to make the pizza bleed motor oil? And how does that fit in with ‘Fresh For Everyone’? The little Krojis – would they be pictured gulping down a chewy piece of pizza with brackish brown sauce dripping from their little smiling mouths? That’s the part I will miss – watching ‘America’s favorite grocery’ trying to make gold out of shit again. It’s the American way.

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The Queen’s Speech

On August 28th, Boris Johnson went to Queen Elizabeth and requested she prorogue the parliament until October. The government, he said, needed extra time to prepare its ‘exciting new program’ for the speech she gives to open Parliament each year. A month’s delay would do he said.

So the Queen prorogued parliament.

There was the predicable public outcry. ‘Dictator’, ‘Liar’, ‘Slime Ball’, ‘Dolt’. All this head banging aroused another dolt in Washington who Tweeted, “Very bad. The Brits have pierogis in the Parliament [sic] and now no government [sic]. But because of me, my Wall protects this great country [sic]. There won’t be any tacos shutting down our government [??].”

The Scottish Supreme Court walking with their hats.

One of Johnson’s opponents took the prorogue decision to the Scottish Supreme Court which is apparently where important court cases start in the UK. The charge was lying to the Queen. The Court quickly said, ‘yep, he lied’. Johnson’s guys then went to the Supreme Supreme Court in London and said, ‘no he didn’t.’ That Court read the Scottish’s Court judgement, agreed with it and said, ‘yes he did.’

Lying to the Queen? In the sixteenth century that would have got you thrown in the Tower at best or, if you were a snot head like Johnson, a one way ride up Tower Hill. But much to the Queen’s dismay, her great, great, great grandfather William surrendered royal judicial powers to the commoners in exchange for a lousy salt tax so he could attack the French again.

Bango! – got ’em in the crosswalk.

Though the Queen is constitutionally bound to let the courts enforce laws and mete out punishment (the Court ordered Johnson to unlock Parliament and give everyone a free coffee during its first session), Prince Phillip is not. The man is 98, deep in dotage, and apparently not bound by any English law whatsoever. If you piss him off, he will give you a hefty smack with his Jubilee Silver Royce Phantom. So what if you break a leg or arm? The NHS will fix you up for free and Phillip drives on. When the prince is on the prowl along the roads in Windsor, the Queen is much amused.

Four times he asked parliament to declare him incompetent. And they refused.

So Johnson was in a pickle (or perhaps pickled beets). He introduced four motions stating he was too incompetent to lead the country and they were all voted down. Parliament then passed a law stating that Johnson had to request a Brexit extension past October 31st if he could not reach a deal with the EU by then. Since Johnson’s strategy all along was to ensure the EU would never agree to a deal, he was miffed and said he’d force the country to leave anyways.

So it went back to the Scottish Supreme Court. The case is typically befuddling to anyone not British – If Johnson ignores the law that says he must extend the EU negotiations, Johnson’s opponents wants the court to order him to do so now, even though he has not done anything yet nor needs to until October 31st. It’s a kind of a ‘just in case he does’ case.

Johnson’s response was equally befuddling: (1) he will withdraw the UK out of the EU on October 31st no matter what, (2) the matter has no business going to the courts until he actually does something on the 31st, when it will be too late to stop, and (3) he will obey whatever the court says.

Suspended – Not Prorogued

Then everyone took a break to have their annual party conferences. Johnson went to Manchester, Corbyn to Brighton and Swinson (Lib Dem) to Bournemouth. The Queen took Phillip to Balmoral for a fall vacation. Since no one was at Parliament, it was ‘suspended’ rather than ‘prorogued’.

Except for the Queen, all the players are sniping at each other, playing games of double dare you to double double dare me, and preparing for a new election that has not been scheduled. Luckily for everyone, the earth still rotates and time ticks by. October 31st will inevitably arrive. Shit will happen. Then more shit. Then it will be over. The UK will still be in the UE or not. There will be more accidents involving a Royce Phantom in the northern suburbs of London.

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Americans Are Idiots #23

9/27/2019 BATAVIA TOWNSHIP, Ohio —

By WLW Digital Staff

Aircare was dispatched to East Fork State Park in Clermont County for a woman injured on a bike path on Friday night. Emergency responders were called to the scene just after 7:30 p.m.

Clermont County dispatch said a tree had fallen on the woman. The incident happened on the bike path around 3,000 feet from the Matt Maupin Pavilion.

Officials have not released the woman’s condition.


September 28, 2019 at 11:42 AM EDT – Updated September 28 at 1:39 PM

ESTES PARK, Colo. (AP/Gray News) — Wildlife officials in Colorado are warning people to keep their distance from elk during their mating season after a bull charged people, knocked a woman down and repeatedly butted her with its antlers.

Video shows the elk running toward people Thursday near the visitor center in Estes Park near Rocky Mountain National Park.

The attack came during the community’s annual Elk Fest.

The woman escaped after public works employee Brian Berg drove a pickup on the sidewalk and got between her and the elk. The elk then rammed the

front of the truck.

                                    * * * * *

    And stay out of the park.   

A woman wanders through the woods of a state park outside of Cincinnati. The day is sunny, hot and no breeze. A tree, for whatever reason, falls and conchs the lady on the head – knocks her cold. A short time later another hiker comes by, sees the unfortunate woman and calls EMS. It is an internet news story. There was no follow-up; presumably the woman lived.
Why would anyone tromp through the woods anyway? A tree got her but there are a dozen ways to die in the wild. Bears. There are bears in southwest Ohio. They generally don’t molest humans unless they’re hunger. In the fall, they are always hungry. Getting hit by a tree is probably better than being eaten by a bear.
Rattlesnakes? Ohio has ’em all over the place. Not like Texas but like Ohio. If you step on one, they will bite you just like the ones in Texas.
There are coyotes too. They travel in packs and usually attack sheep and small children. But if you out on a trail when a pack traipse by, expect them to give you a good looking over. Expect more if you are trapped under a tree.
There are a lot of deer there too. Deer with big antlers that look pretty much like elk. You can see where this is going.
Switch across the country. Colorado, another park, outside of Denver.

See the pretty animals.

This time it’s elk who show up for a town’s Elk Festival. It is a tribute to the Elk Festival organizers that the elk, who typically ignore the Georgian calendar, dropped in for the weekend’s gala, which, naturally was during rutting season.

American Idiot #23.
If humans show up at an elk event, the results are predictable: an elk gores the first person it sees, then gets into a fight with a Ford 150. So much for a peaceful day the foothills of the Rockies.
Lyle Lovett once said to a tipsy George Bush twenty-five years, “Schrub, you bring elk to a stag party, but you’re gonna get a horn up your ass.”
Or tree upside your head. Nothing has changed.
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