Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Ten Things Times Two

By Cornelia

Ten Things I Hate

1. Durian

File this under "Never Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head." World's smelliest fruit. Like, so smelly you're not allowed to bring it into taxis or hotel rooms in most Asian countries.

And seriously, doesn't it look like something that would attack Sigourney Weaver in space? Why would you eat that? We make Intrepid Spouse consume it outdoors. Preferably in the rain.

2. The Smarmy Child-Molester Way That Televangelists Smile.

Even when they're dead. (Thought I pity the cat.)

3. Zamfir...

...And "Spa Music" generally. Reminds me of being forced to listen to WPAT ("Beautiful Music for Beautiful People") in the back of my Grandparents' Lincoln, as a kid.

4. Palmetto Bugs

Your basic flying durian.

5. That Hotel Skank Who Shall Here Remain Unnamed.

Never thought I'd miss Cornelia Guest. Enough said.

6. Movies With Roman Numerals in the Title

If it feels like you should microwave it before you watch it, it never should have been greenlighted.

7. Captain Beefheart


8. Kissinger

Yes, still.

9. Robert Moses

The guy who destroyed the South Bronx, drove the Dodgers and Giants out of New York, and whose underlings boasted they could keep African-Americans out of public swimming pools by "keeping the water too cold." But most of all, the guy who got Penn Station torn down.

I mean, who in their right mind would sacrifice this:

and this:

for this:

What a maroon.

10. Creationists

William Jennings Bryant: what a baboon.

Ten Things I Don't Hate

1. H.L. Mencken

"I never lecture, not because I am shy or a bad speaker, but simply because I detest the sort of people who go to lectures and don't want to meet them."

"It is now quite lawful for a Catholic woman to avoid pregnancy by a resort to mathematics, though she is still forbidden to resort to physics or chemistry."

2. Roz Chast Cartoons

3. Todd Snider

For writing the following lyrics:

Conservative Christian, right wing Republican, straight, white, American males,
Soul savin’, flag wavin’, Rush lovin’, land pavin’ personal
friends to the Quayles.
Quite diligently workin’ so hard to keep the free reins of this De-mo-cracy
From tree huggin’, peace lovin’, pot smokin’, barefootin’ folk-singin’ hippies like me.
Tree huggin’, peace lovin’, pot smokin’, porn watchin’ lazyass hippies like me.

4. The Idea of Hillary in the Whitehouse

Because nothing would tick off your average conservative Christian right-wing Republican more, and I totally love that.

5. Raclette

Because nothing says "Winter" like hot cheese.

Except latkes

But do yourself a favor and don't have them at the same meal.

6. Barbara Stanwyck

I just saw Double Indemnity again for the first time in years. The woman rocks.

7. Gustavian furniture

Kicks mid-century butt.

8. The Royal Tenenbaums

Watched it tonight on DVD. Exquisite. Like a Franny and Zooey visual cocktail.

9. Sally Mann's Photographs

10. Money

I finally got my advance check, and Wells Fargo finally took the hold off it. As Sophie Tucker used to say, "I been rich, and I been poor, and rich is better."

"Rich" is of course relative, but let's put it this way: I gave a buck to a homeless guy a couple of months ago, and he had a cellphone and I didn't. So at this point I been down so long it looks like up to me.

And as my sister Freya once said, "better nouveau riche than no riche at all."

Unless you're a Hilton.

What are you guys hating and not hating, at the moment?


  1. Hating:

    1. All media bloviators who insist on covering the campaign as if polls are everything.

    2. NBC for fucking up It's A Wonderful Life by sticking that goddamn color logo for "Clash of the Choirs" (or whatever that churchified Idol is called) in the corner of the screen. Goddamn.

    3. Stress. I've had enough this year, thank you very much.

    4. Physicians who won't refill your prescription without seeing you.

    5. Ticks.

    6. Deadlines.


    1. Deadlines.

    2. Jeff Bridges. The same guy who played Tucker, Seabiscuit's owner, and the Dude. I love this guy.

    3. Big dogs.

    4. That Captain Beefheart's first band had teenage Taj Mahal AND Ry Cooder in it.

    5. This post, if for no other reason your comment about Robert Moses. Fuck him.

    6. Cornelia Read, for pure awesomosity.

  2. Just a few random thoughts here:


    Reality TV

    Big SUV's

    People who do not dispose of trash in an appropriate manner.

    Women who wear furs and keep the trade going. As the famous ad featuring Marie Helvin in a silver fox coat dripping blood, said, "It took 200 bitches to make this coat and only one stupid bitch to wear it."

    The US healthcare "system" - such as it is.

    People who are cruel to animals - and it's only so long before they graduate to humans.


    George Bush. Tony Blair, ditto

    (OK, I'll stop there, because I can feel a surge of opinion coming on)


    My family


    Julia Fordham's voice and music (check this out: p://youtube.com/watch?v=POucsccEIuI )
    my animals

    Rooibos tea

    Pre-Sunday lunch drinks in a British pub

    My Green Card - jumped a lot of hoops for that one!

    Galloping a horse across the English countryside - and then stopping off at a nice country pub. A Guinness for the horse and half a lager for me.

    Wild primroses and bluebells in an English woodland

    Landing back in America after a Transatlantic trip - whatever we all may say, and however much we love other places, it's good to be home.

    Audrey Hepburn

    San Francisco

    New York

    The county of Kent, England


    Photos of the earth taken from space. Can bring me to tears.

    And the list goes on ...

  3. I love going to Midnight Mass with Renee on Christmas Eve. And I'm Jewish!

    I'm a sucker for the choir singing "Ave Maria," the most beautiful, moving song I know.

    Wouldn't hurt to hear Pavarotti one more time: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2uYrmYXsujI

  4. I may have to rethink Captain Beefheart. But still, is that even a trout? It looks like a catfish to me.

    I love the idea of a Guinness for your horse, Our J.

    And midnight mass is pretty cool, Paul.

  5. "I been down so long it looks like up to me." I hate that Richard FariƱa has been gone so long.

    And right now I hate Christmas ribbons that don't curl.


  6. Trout Mask Replica is considered Beefheart's masterpiece, C, but I remember it's not as accessible as his first, Safe As Milk. I had a fondness for Mirror Man, but that could have been the drugs.

    I haven't heard any Beefheart in decades but it's eerie (Paul, cue the Twilight Zone music) you bring it up.

    Last year at this time, on the day before our Christmas break, I had a long talk with a co-worker about Beefheart (his real name's Don Van Vliet) and his painting. He's kind of a garage sale DeKooning, if you ask me, but what do I know.

    That co-worker died on Christmas day, dead at 46 from a heart attack no one saw coming.

  7. I should add, my co-worker's name was John Knight, a rock critic back in the day, and an artist. He was one of a kind. I still miss him.

  8. A couple years ago when money was awful, I applied for food stamps and when i went to get the plastic card that food stamps is now, the room full of waiting people ALL had cell phones. It was an odd feeling. I mean they really do save money but I hadn't been able to afford one. I still can't - my MOTHER bought me one on HER plan (which is why the number from it has a Connecticut area code).

    I finally decided this year that no joke, I HATE this time of year. Not some of it, or part of it. ALL OF IT. I HATE the weather, hate it hate it. It makes me helpless and weak, pretty much literally.

    My dad's yahrzeit is mid-November so from then on, it's pretty sucky. I'm not Christian and I don't find joy is other people's holidays, sorry. I just don't. Mike frickin Huckabee thinks I should be spending my time celebrating the birth of Christ. Sorry bubba, he's no one of my saints.

    There are moments of bright, yes. Thanksgiving is fun and cool and good food and good company, even if and when that company is only Stu. this year it was 6 people (in a big crowd at the ZOO) and a baby gorilla. That helped a LOT.

    "Holiday" aka Christmas music everywhere and/or announcements in the stores about their new products or sales. I can't get a friggin' prescription refilled without hearing about Walgreen's special something or another.

    I thank Patty, Morgan and Vinnie for NOT playing bad Christmas music at the coffee shop. Last year it was not only endless, it was the cardigan boys. you know, Andy Williams, Perry Como. Singing "Little Drummer Boy". HELP MEEEEEEE!! I'm a pacifist, but on days like that, imagines of going berzerk and throwing things come to mind. Of course, at this coffee shop, that would involve throwing a lot of stuffed toy monkeys. Might be therapeutic.

    David T got one - those damn LOGOs, BUGS whatever they are on EVERY damn tv channel, even damn Bravo. I don't watch that movie but I'd like to get through an hour-long show without being forcibly told what's on next Thursday, thanks. I don't CARE.

    I'll be better soon. I've got a Squishable coming. That should hold me til I can get out to the neighborhood kitten adoption center for some therapy (aka looking in the window and trying to count the kittens and making awful squeaking "aren't they cute?" comments)

  9. I hate:

    Bloody politics - and other people's longwinded opinions about it, along with their yapping endlessly in my face with it.


    Lack of manners.

    The crass commercialism of many holidays - and the mean-ness that often accompanies them.

    Endless Christmas songs for six weeks!!! Urk. Choke!

    Auto menus with electronic voices - followed by muzak, and the same announcement over and over and over again. Urk. Nuff to cause me to bang phone on forehead many times.

    The US medical system - had to endure too much of it lately.

    Ticks. (hi David)


    Endless things that have to be done.


    Getting the christmas chores over with and just kicking back and hanging with family and a few friends.

    The feeling of satisfaction I get when I finally post all of the Christmas cooking boxes out - after I've just spent two very long days on my feet cooking and getting them ready.

    Watching funky old movies with friends and laughing a lot - or oohing and ahhing a lot.

    Walking in the Aussie bush in morning sunlight when the dew is still on the leaves and grass.

    Reclining in a pool of spring sunlight after a long winter.

    Brightening someone's day, and easing their load just a little.

    Things that make me smile - no matter how small.

    Thundery coloured big grey clouds looming over sun drenched yellow grass.




    Everyone have a happy silly season.

  10. Oh, and books.

    Nothing I love better than hiding away with a good book - usually mystery - and letting the world go hang.


  11. Things I hate?

    1. I have a birthday tomorrow, haven't been a teenager for more decades than I care to admit--and woke up this morning with a pimple on my nose.

    2. People who think they understand things, and really are just parroting what they have been told by a person they 'trust', without examining the situation for themselves in any depth whatsoever.

    3. Men who abuse women, in any way, shape or form. 'Nuff said.

    3A. Same for anyone who abuses a child, again in any way, shape or form. When I say 'hate', I don't mean 'dislike'.

    Things I love?

    1. Beautiful women; and Jackie, Cornelia and Patty are three damn good reasons to drop by Naked Authors. Even when Patty has a sub, it's another attractive blond with a magic smile.

    2. Christmas. I don't care what faith you are, but in America, it's one of the few times that people actually act like decent human beings. Couldn't we get a little more Christmas to go around?

    2A. A Charlie Brown Christmas. 'Nuff said.

    3. Keeping in touch with the people who are a part of me. Two of my friends from high school and I have birthdays on consecutive days--we realized this at our last reunion--and a fourth is a week after mine. We just exchanged a flurry of e-mails, being nowadays spread across the country.

    4. Valentine's Day--but that's another subject entirely.

    Happy Holidays, everyone!

  12. Love good, interesting books.

    Hate, bland, designed to please everyone books, TV and movies.

    Love, checking the blogs every day.

    Hate spending so much time ont he blogs everyday.

    And Terrinoire, how about another book soon. I know we've been over this but it's time. Stop teasing us.


  13. Hate:

    That Christmas commercialism started in October.
    The unholy alliance of politics and media
    Talking heads from all parts of the political specturm
    Bad manners

    Where I am right this minute
    My friends
    Christmas music
    That this stinkin' year is almost over

    (Fun post, Miss C ;-)

  14. I hate that I have to now wear boots every day because of the slushy snow/ice that's accumulated and won't be gone until March.

    I hate office Christmas parties.

    I hate high oil prices because I have to wear three sweaters around the house.

    I hate the election and it hasn't even really gotten too bad yet.

    I LOVE the smell of spaghetti sauce that's permeating the house right now as my husband makes supper.

    I love listening to my daughter play Christmas songs on her violin and then sing them afterward.

    I love Christmas lights.

    I love reading the blogs every day and finding out what my far-away friends are up to and what they're thinking about.

  15. I hate it when people don't call me back. It makes me feel invisible.

    I love Christmas--the whole ball of wax--spending time with friends and making Marianne's fruitcake. I love what I'm doing at the moment and feel incredibly lucky to have you all in my life. It's raining in L.A. today. I even love that.

    Jeff, hope your zit heals.

  16. Hate?

    The AMPTP

    Political "discussion"

    The last three screenplays I read tonight (I would gladly accept a mental enema to flush out the memories)




    a nice glass of iced tea

    the smell of BBQ


    John Barry's theme from ZULU (don't ask)

  17. Things I Hate:
    My husband
    cleaning up after the cat
    cleaning in general
    a certain celebutante with the name of a famous European city
    bad things happening to children
    cheap smoked salmon
    poverty, war and injustice
    (not necessarily in that order)

    Things I Love
    My husband
    My kitten
    My daughter
    30 Rock
    Design on a Dime
    huge scores at thrift shops
    sleeping late
    YA fantasy novels
    (not at all in that order!)

  18. Hate:
    The IRS (as my advocate says "they treat everyone like they are an ax murderer, they view it as their money & they don't really care that you will be broke and homeless in 2016 when / if you pay them every penny you earn from now until then )

    Anyone who is cruel to animals or children. Michael Vick and anyone who views dogfighting as a "Sport"

    The NFL - who will probably let Vick back in apres prison.

    OJ, Phil Spector, Robert Blake, and any other men who prefer murder to divorce (the Petersons et alia)

    The grotesqueness of $1000. purses in a country that has hungry kids and homeless Veterans.

    The GOP & the Democrats. Does anyone else think this current crop of candidates ranges from the lazy and incompetent to the scarily crazy?


    Old Friends

    New Friends

    Old Movies-- Betty Davis, Cary Grant, all of Hitchcock and the Marx Brothers

    also, David Mamet

    great books and people who read

    independent bookstores

    good libraries

    you folks--- who always make me think, often make me laugh, sometimes make me cry.

    the fabulous Cornelia, of course.


  19. PS


    That skanky millionairess and all others like her (see the Kardashians) who think being moronic and a slut is a-ok...
    as long as it makes money, and the parents who raised thses people....