My schedule’s crammed, jam-packed; I’m under pressure, confronting incomplete projects, deadlines unmet.
I have more things to do than I have time to do them.
There’s a studio waiting, full of paintings and drawings in various stages of completion that need a lot of attention prior to exhibit.
There are sections of a book that require a final edit before I send them to an agent.
I’m working on a play about life in Siberia With a View that I want to complete and ship to friends who run a theater company. Should they produce it, I will be first to visit them in the hospital following the attack by irate, torch-bearing townsfolk.
I’m laboring on a novel concerning a panhandler who works a corner at a major intersection in Denver, or who might be a journalist; a dominatrix, who might be a crack whore or an heiress; and a recently deceased artist, a painter whose masterwork is sold, stolen, then sought by a crew of unreliable characters whose identities one can never be sure of, and whose narratives are clearly unreliable. Or the painter might be his demented friend, and not dead after all.
Plenty to do.
So, I spend most of my available work hours cruising the Internet.
In my defense: at least I stick to a routine.
I rise in the morning, say a word or two to my wife, Kathy, stumble to the bathroom, take a leak and a shower, then put on the same clothes I wore the day before (and the day before that, etc.).
I pour a cup of coffee, tell Kathy “I’m off to work” and lumber down the stairs to the “office,” where I sit in front of the computer, ignite the beast and marvel as photons zip from screen to optic nerve — stunned, like Homo heidelbergensis experiencing fire for the first time.
I begin by making stops at a few favorite porn sites (it’s science!) then check in at the NY Times and The Guardian in order to maintain the illusion I am well informed about global events. I speed-read a couple articles at arts and letters sites in order to maintain the illusion I am an intellectual kind of a guy, fluent in post-structuralist lingo, up to date on things academic and inconsequential.
Most of my time, however, is taken up with social media interactions and, in particular, with matters that fly from Facebook. Not so much the posts sent by “friends” as with spinoffs from those posts, or with spinoffs from the spinoffs.
I ride the algorithmic pony every day, and I ride it hard. It takes time.
Are you with me? Sound familiar?
For example: a “friend” posts a link to an article and video about someone’s pet marmot that has been trained to say “hello.”
This is fascinating, but more interesting are the related links that show up on a sidebar. Marmot-related links, in this case. Marmots … and beyond.
I set up the digital sluice box on the sidebar; there are riches there to be mined.
Let’s take a gander at today’s activities.
The process gains momentum when a “friend” provides a link to a video of a Fifth Dimension performance of “Up, Up and Away” featured on a 1968 broadcast of Laugh In. The video triggers an Internet avalanche that sweeps me away.
I’m no fan of Jimmy Webb songs, nor am I interested in watching members of a group of marginal pop vocalists lip-synch their way through his miserable ditty, but as I prompt the video and turn off the sound I notice the sidebar offers me a wide range of Fifth Dimension options. One item references an interview with Marilyn McCoo (currently age 71, the daughter of Mary and Waymon McCoo).
Florence LaRue does nothing for me, but Marilyn McCoo …
I’m outta there, tossed ass over teakettle by the avalanche and its powerful logic.
I immediately Google “Marilyn McCoo nude.”
I find a poorly focused shot of a pudgy, tattooed torso with Marilyn’s head clumsily Photoshopped on it, but it’s too clearly a fake, an embarrassing amateur effort. Marilyn was not the kind of person to shed her duds for the camera. If you’re going to fake a photo of a gal like this, you need to do it well.
This discovery propels me back to the array of Fifth Dimension videos and to the clip from Laugh In. I watch Marilyn gyrate modestly, then it’s on to other Laugh In clips, other associations.
Let’s see, who was on Laugh In? As in, females who might have made the mistake of allowing themselves to be photographed sans clothing.
Seems a reasonable assumption. The sassy, spritely Brit had quite the reputation.
Nope. Again, some crude Photoshop products, but no Judy.
Possible, what with the “I’m loony” persona.
Lily Tomlin? Ruth Buzzi?
Forget it. Why bother?
Not for the skin, rather for the sidebar stuff that pops up. The menu du jour.
Nudity is but an appetizer to be sampled prior to a full meal.
What choice morsel do I find on the sidebar?
“The Close-up Popping of Possibly the Biggest Zit in the World.” (I assume the algorithm offers this to me because, no doubt, Goldie dealt with problem zits more than once during her long career.)
Compared to shots of a topless and sagging 65-year-old Goldie Hawn snapped at a beach by a sleazoid paparazzo, this item is priceless.
The zit pop video, in all its explosive, gooey, slo-mo glory, generates other tantalizing sidebar opportunities.
“20 Celebrities Who Chose to Cut Careers Short.” (Again, a connection with show biz zit manipulation.)
I don’t recognize most of the celebrities, probably because they cut their careers short, but new sidebar options appear. It’s algorithmic magic, and I’m tumbling out of control!
“15 Shocking Medieval Hygiene Practices.”
I knew about royals of-old wiping their asses with lambs’ wool, but herbs pushed up the poop chute is a surprise. I understand the need to jam a bunch of fresh basil up your ass if you haven’t bathed in a year or so — it’s the polite thing to do — but what happens when it’s winter and all that’s available is dried Rosemary or a wad of played-out potpourri? That’s a major sacrifice to civility. But, after all, that’s what makes royals different from the rest of us, isn’t it?
A sidebar item is generated that seems related; it attracts my attention and occupies me for nearly an hour: “Worst Ever Cheerleader Uniform Malfunctions.”
My interest pays off when I click to photo 56 and encounter the poor dear who shit her pants while doing high kicks. She has the brightest, widest smile imaginable on her face, her porcelain features frozen and framed by a Farrah Fawcett hairdo, but why did she continue the routine? Surely, she felt something warm and moist down there. She would have to, judging by the size of the stain. And someone — the team ball boy, a member of the marching band, a vendor walking the aisles in the stands, a semi-literate member of the special teams unit — would have said something to her, don’t you think? I stand in awe of this perky and valiant trooper’s dedication. I bookmark the page.
This segues smoothly via sidebar to a site offering a set of photos of Pvt. Elvis Presley in his underwear. I imagine, considering his habits, the aging Elvis probably crapped his pants more than a couple times. Don’t forget: he died while laboring on the can, a crinkled copy of Field and Stream clutched in his pudgy paw. He had to be gobbling stool softeners like party mix, and you know where that leads!
Elvis? Celebrities in distress? Look, right there on the sidebar: “90s Child Stars Gone Bad.”
The rapid downward spiral suffered by Haley Joel Osment saddens me, and I have to ask: Who the hell is Haley Joel Osment?
When I read that Amanda Bynes threw a bong out an apartment window during a police raid, I’m shocked. Amanda? Drugs? Trouble with the authorities? A bong? And I have to ask: Who the hell is Amanda Bynes?
But, I am not as shocked as when I click on “The Government Doesn’t Want You to Know What We Discovered.”
Sit down: this site confirms everything you’ve long suspected about The Government.
You know: The Government.
There is a herd of goofs here in Siberia With a View alarmed about Them. These social cripples form militia groups, pack rented storage spaces with semi-autos and ammo, hold meetings in coffee shops where they sit around a table, hunched over, whispering about concentration camps being built by the BLM to hold patriots who mysteriously “disappear” during the night. After seeing this video, I consider buying a tri-cornered hat and joining the guys at the café. If my truck was in better shape, I’d do it.
What was found that authorities don’t want us to know about?
For starters: A dead squid the size of an ocean liner, washed up on a Southern California beach and — fasten your seat belts — a dead turtle the size of a two-story house, discovered in a forest clearing in Alabama by a trio of possum poachers.
The fucking government. First, They mist us with chemtrails that fiddle with our fertility and destroy our ability to do simple math, and now we discover They knew about a deceased giant squid, grown to an immense size due to helix-shredding radioactivity leaking from Fukashima and hormones flushed down toilets in NFL locker rooms making their way to sea to be ingested by hapless cephalopods. There’s got to be an octopus out there that’s bigger than the Met Life Building!
The government knows. And They are not telling us about it!
I’m fired up. I take a bathroom break, then scurry back to the screen.
A stream of bits of equally useful knowledge keeps me occupied for the rest of the day:
- A series of bizarre exercise videos, concluding with my favorite: an oddly costumed woman (bulbous padding strapped on arms and legs) with a Minnie Mouse hairdo leading a cadre of folks dressed as standard poodles in a series of aerobics moves. I watch the video seven times. I experience what, for me, is a significant semi erection.
- A naked guy wearing a horse-head mask, dancing and cooking mushrooms. His knife skills are spectacular, the equal of any Paul Bocuse sous chef!
- A fellow slathered in ice cream, eating ropy, white gunk scraped from the top of his head with a large spoon. I believe he is Japanese, but it’s hard to confirm, what with all the ice cream.
- A video proving the moon is a hologram. Nowhere near as scary as the holograms we know as Dick Cheney and Sarah Palin, mind you, but worthy of attention.
- A list of “15 Thoroughly Depraved and Sleazy Movies Only Sick People Would Watch.” I spend thirty minutes searching the Netflix archives to see if I can order the films.
- “Dinosaurs Helped Build the Pyramids.” I am sure there are plenty of folks in Tennessee who delight in this “fact,” watching the video again and again to confirm their beliefs. After all, didn’t Moses ride a Dreadnoughtus schrani to the top of the mountain? Wasn’t the velociraptor the primary mode of transportation for prophets in Beersheba?
- Yoga? Satan? Makes perfect sense. For sure, those folks in Tennessee agree.
- Obama is controlling the weather. I didn’t need this confirmed: It’s the end of January and it’s 60 degrees here in Siberia With a View. Is there another, more viable explanation? No.
- Ten goriest film scenes ever. See Netflix search above: thirty minutes more, gone.
- The earth is hollow. But, at least it’s not a hologram. It’s hollow because we need space for the machines used to create holograms. Without those machines there would be no Republican Party, no Tea Party or Fox News commentators.
- Most world leaders are lizard illuminati. The ones who aren’t holograms.
Next thing I know, it’s four in the afternoon. Time to go to the grocery store, return home, drink a cocktail or three, and make dinner.
It’s been a typical, full day: brain drilled, knowledge implanted, art and writing waiting.
So, my schedule’s crammed.
I’m old, with little time left and much to do.
I need to bear down tomorrow, get to back to business.
Right after I indulge in a bit of science.