arteejee

A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Location: Southeastern, Pennsylvania, United States

Saturday, April 22, 2017

A Saturday Memoriam: Cuba Gooding, Sr.



Cuba Gooding Sr. passed away this week in Los Angeles.  I’ve always liked his performance on the 1974 hit recording by The Main Ingredient, Everybody Plays the Fool.  In his memory, we will post a video of a live performance on The Midnight Special.  (Remember that late night music show?)


This is one of my favorite R&B songs from the early 70s.  Of course it’s about a relationship gone badly, but I can’t help but wonder.  The title and its premise could just as easily speak to us today as we try to cope with the current regime.

We may all be playing the fools now.

(Thank you for reading.  RIP Mr. Gooding.)

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Nobody Wins



This weekend, as Christians around the world celebrate Easter, tensions are flaring between US and North Korea.  China is stepping in to calm both sides even as North Korea celebrates the anniversary of the birth of their founder.  This is being celebrated with large public demonstrations of affection for the North Korean leadership who are more than happy to show off their collection of YUGE missiles in a long parade.  Talk about compensating for their manhood.

We don’t know what China plans to do, but may we suggest that they invite both sides over for a talk over a nice big bowl of wonton soup. “Bubbala,” they might say, “Come over for a nice hot lunch.  It’s chicken broth and you know how chicken broth makes you feel all warm inside?”

In the meantime, someone needs to tell our leadership that responding to North Korea’s threat of nuclear weapons with our own nuclear arsenal is a no win situation. Fine, go ahead and send our missiles to them as they send the missiles to us. NOBODY WINS…as illustrated in this video from 1981.


Unfortunately our President seems determined to learn the hard way.

Again, talk about compensating for his manhood.

(Thank you for reading.  Or better yet, check out the American International so-bad-it’s-good classic movie, Teenage Caveman, for a view of life after a nuclear apocalypse.)

Friday, April 14, 2017

God and Son: Just Another Friday in Spring



And now time once again for the most blasphemous show in the blogosphere: God and Son!


(Cheesy situation comedy theme music up with studio audience applause.)


Jesus:  What?  That Pilate is a nut!


God: Good Morning, Son.   What is that you have in your hand?


Jesus:   It’s my I Phone, Father.   I’m just reading the latest Twitter feed from Pontius Pilate.   Get this:  @PontiuePilate, Jesus and his followers believe they have the secret to living an ever-lasting life.  LAME!


God:  Um, where did you get such a device in your area of the world? 


Jesus:  One of my disciples gave it to me.  I think it was Judas.  (Beep sound.)  Now what?   Oh, you won’t believe this tweet, Father:  @PontiusPilate: stories about Jesus feeding multitudes with bread and fish.  Another Jesus hoax!


God:  Wow, he’s really letting you have it. Wait a minute, how can you even possess such a device that gives you these messages?  Doesn’t it require some sort of, you know, technology?


Jesus: Yes, I guess so.


God: Okay, and does this technology currently exist in 32 AD? 


Jesus:  Well, um, no.   I thought this device was another one of your miracles.


God: Oh, right!  Yes, this is my most advanced miracle yet.  Carry on. (Another beep.)


Jesus:  What now…oh, this is unbelievable. Get this, Father.  @PontiusPilate: Jesus should just mind his own business and let the money changers run the temple. All of this self-righteous talk about salvation.  SAD.  This kind of rhetoric really makes me angry.  I should go and talk to Pilate about his thinking.


God: Um, yes, you do that, son.  You’ll be right on schedule…


Jesus: What?  What do you mean right on schedule?


God:  Well, you actually do have an appointment with him, right?


Jesus: I do?


God: Yes, check your calendar on your miracle device.


Jesus:  Okay, I just swipe left and, oh here it is, Friday.  Wow!  I have a full schedule!   Audience with Pilate, arrest, arraignment, torture, trial and in the afternoon death by crucifixion.   Wait a minute…Father, what month is this?


God:  Month?   I don’t know; months have been invented yet. 


Jesus: You don’t know what month it is?  I thought you were an omniscient deity.


God: Oh, excuse me, prophet with a device that won’t exist for two thousand years! (Awkward pause with some thunder in the background.)  Look, I do know that it is spring time, when the earth renews itself.


Jesus:  Oh, right.  The earth renews itself and you get another chance to demonstrate your greatest miracle…everlasting life.  (A beep.)  Now what…oh, great!   @Pontius Pilate: just ordered soldiers to arrest Jesus.


God:  Well, at least you’re getting advanced warning this year.


(Troops marching in the distance.)


Jesus: Cursed future technology!  


Roman Soldier: Jesus of Nazareth?   You are under arrest by order of the Emperor of Judea, Pontius Pilate.


Jesus:  Yeah, fine.  Just give me a minute to tweet this.   @JesusChrist: Hey Pilate!  You suck!


God: Whoa, son!  Language!


(Applause and cheesy music up and out.)


(Thank you for reading.   Remember to tweet responsibly.)

Sunday, April 09, 2017

A Few Thoughts for the Week



Some ideas for blog entries which cannot fill up my self-imposed minimum of 7-11 paragraphs per entry do not always see the light of day.  Ideas like…

BARRY MANILOW COMES OUT AT THE AGE OF 73

So, now it is official.  Barry Manilow is gay.  

Worst. Kept. Open. Secret. Ever.

Many of us had this figured out decades ago.   Didn’t you get our memo, Barry?

The singer/songwriter’s main concern about not coming out until now was what his fans might think.  Unfortunately, this is an all too true concern for the gay community. True, there have been strides forward in recent years, and we may be walking back some of those strides under the current regime, but overall societal hostility towards homosexuals has not diminished.  Massive bummer!

As a heterosexual, I can only empathize to a point; there’s no way I can imagine the twisting roller coaster ride of emotions gay people go through when deciding to come out or not. 

Fortunately, Manilow’s fans have been very understanding and, surprise surprise, supportive of his decision.  Barry Manilow, a talented artist who has celebrated life and given voice to everyone’s angst over their romantic lives, is gay?  Okay, nothing’s changed!

Let’s move on to…

IF THERE IS A REPUBLICAN IN THE WHITE HOUSE, THEN THIS MUST BE WAR!

Now here’s a tale with more twists to it than a M. Night Shyamalan movie.

The new President, with sinking poll numbers and zero for three in getting his policies enacted, launches a missile attack against Bashar Assad’s regime in response to a chemical attack the Syrian leader unleashed on his own people.  Okay, kudos for appearing to look like a humanitarian when young children died horrible deaths, but I can’t give the president any points for sincerity

After all, this is the President who urged his predecessor via Twitter not to engage in military intervention in the Syrian civil war; who campaigned to his faithful, rabid base that he would not get the US involved in the conflict even as he boasted he would destroy one of Syria’s allies (ISIL or ISIS) in 30 days, and who has tried at least twice to ban refugees from conflicts in Syria from entering the US.  Now he mourns the loss of innocent victims that he would deny sanctuary?

The sympathy for the Syrians’ loss of life is a good motive, but I can’t believe it was the only motive for our attack.

Let’s look at the pros and cons.  Yes, the attack sent a message that we would not tolerate such large-scale massacres as this one.  Con: news about the attack bumped attention away from the President’s Russian connection news story for at least one news cycle. 

Russia protested that the attack was a violation of international law.  Con: for all we know, and this conspiracy theory has been making the rounds of social media, the President and Putin together plotted this attack as a way to help the President’s standing.  This could also allow Putin to save face at the prospect that his armed services did not know Assad still had chemical weapons years after they signed an agreement attesting to the fact (obviously now discounted) that Assad had destroyed all of his chemical weapons.

This is not to mention the false Republican narrative that the President’s predecessor did not make good on his promise to punish Assad for crossing the “red line” Obama drew in the sand.  For the record: Obama wanted to attack Syria when they crossed the line, but could not find any support in the Republican-led Congress or abroad.  The Bush era mideast conflicts made us all tired of fighting and drove an undercurrent of isolationism, as evidenced by the election of our current President winning the Oval Office and abroad, Brexit.  Obama’s hands were tied. He backed away because he could not LEGALLY declare war on a country without the Republican-led Congress approval.

Which leads us to the biggest con: if our new President changes his mind literally overnight from his long held belief about a certain issue, then how will he react to some sort of other provocation from, say, North Korea?

We may see nuclear apocalypse yet.

Who knew that Barry Manilow’s announcement would cause all this conflict?

(Thank you for reading.  Okay, let’s get all of those snarky comments about “Weekend in New England" out of our systems now.)