This Week's Dose of Dangle
Out in the back yard there’s a clump of bamboo I planted a few years ago and now it sends stalks fifteen feet into the air, lots of them. Its invasive fronds will be working their way into my studio before long if I don’t stop them. So I whacked it all off near the ground and I’m trying to dig out the giant root ball. Its roots are shallow but hairy and tenacious. So I’m out there with a mattock swinging the heavy axe like thing like I’m on a chain gang. My soft, never-worked-a-hard-day-in-my-life hands are all blistered and painful, and my back is knotted up like a fist. It’s a great way to work out my frustrations, whacking those roots for fifteen minutes or so a day. I figure it will take me all winter to finish the job.
Hae on Halloween: the kids from East Oakland come to our neighborhood because it’s safer; the kids from our neighborhood go to Rockridge because it’s safer; where do the kids from Rockridge go? Piedmont?
I took Oscar out trick-or-treating. He was dressed as a ninja robot, something he invented. He’s old enough now that he’s not too shy to say, “trick or treat,” but he was very particular about which houses he approached. He didn’t like the ones that had a lot of skulls and pumpkins and decorations. He preferred the plain ones. He really wanted to trick or treat with his pal, Clyde, and we finally hooked up with Clyde’s family over on 62nd Street, after Oscar’s little plastic pumpkin was already half full. Clyde was some kind of Star Wars storm trooper and he was running full speed with a little gang of six or seven kids trying to get as much candy as possible as fast as possible. His dad gave me a beer. Once Oscar got a taste of trick or treating with a gang, running up on the porches and overwhelming the homeowners, he decided it wasn’t for him. He said, “Dad, I just want to go alone.” I wonder if it’s his own individual nature or some genetic thing that makes him run from the crowd.
This week’s cartoon gave me headaches and I don’t know if it’s any good, but then I never know. Remember, my deadline came one day before the election, which made it tough to comment. I was thinking about how much nothing will happen during the next two years of divided government, and then I started hearing that Fugs song, Nothing, in my head. “Monday nothing, Tuesday nothing, Wednesday and Thursday nothing...” So I borrowed a little from it. Whew! Cartoon done! I had three viewers watching Dangle on Deadline so I wasn’t totally alone.
Election Day...Well, the worser of two evils won as predicted. It was not nearly as fun and watching the World Series. Now the Dems will get their chance to compromise as they have been wanting to do and pass all the legislation that comes out of the House. First thing for the Dems to give up on: the Bush tax cuts will be extended in return for some weak legislation the Dems want. The Reps won’t budge so the Dems will just fold over and give them what they want. It will sail through the Senate. We’ll be seeing both nothingness and capitulation for the next two years. It’ll be ugly.
I got a goddamn ticket for making a right turn on red without stopping in Emeryville, not by an actual cop but by a video camera. My attitude is that one must only drive as well as conditions warrant. If there are no cops nearby it’s fine to coast through a stop sign as long as nobody is coming. But not in Emeryville. I hate that town and their traffic cameras. This is the second time they’ve gotten me. $520. If it happens again I swear I will stop driving.
Be sure to tune in for Drinking and Inking on Friday at 3pm Pacific.
Hae and I watched more Mad Men episodes, the World Series, and Tomorrow, a grim and depressing movie with Robert Duvall. I give it two thumbs in the eyeballs.