In a video interview shot for Viceland, former NBA star turned actor turned wrestler turned diplomat turned professional celebrity Dennis Rodman---the man reputed to be Donald Trump’s choice for ambassador to North Korea after diplomatic relations are restored in a Trump administration---related how he “broke” his penis three times. Not playing basketball, but in overly athletic sexual encounters. Rodman related each bedroom bungle in great detail, one of the details being “there was blood everywhere."
“If his pal Kim Jong Un ever turns on him,” my cousin Ray Sixkiller chuckled, “Rodman can delay his execution by playing Scheherazade.”
I thought my cousin was paying tribute to Rodman’s storytelling ability in a weird way…and then I remembered all the times Rodman has appeared in drag.
In other news of Rodman’s future diplomatic post, The Washington Post reported from the Brazil Olympics how the athletes from the Hermit Kingdom are treated differently. While there are always “minders,” the primary method for making sure they don’t defect is keeping their families back home in jeopardy of being punished.
One thing in the Olympians’ swag bags was denied to the North Koreans: a Samsung Galaxy 7 smart phone. North Koreans generally are not allowed to use communications gear without supervision and apparently athletes don’t get special treatment in access to tech.
“Or,” Cousin Ray speculated, “ it could just be that Samsung makes stuff in South Korea not found in North Korea and the Dear Leader doesn’t want to call attention to it.”
Politico reported that the Commission on Presidential Debates has instructed the debate venues to design an alternative debate stage with three podia rather than two. The third party candidates must be on the ballot in enough states to win and must be polling at least 15 percent, and with two of the least popular candidates in the country having captured their respective parties, anything could happen.
Right now, Green candidate Jill Stein is at 3.8 percent and Libertarian Gary Johnson is polling 8.8 percent. Conventional wisdom is that Stein would take votes from Hillary Clinton and Johnson would take from Donald Trump.
Trump, at a rally in Florida, attacked Clinton because Seddique Mateen, the father of the Orlando nightclub shooter, was photographed in the audience directly behind her. At the time of the attack, the approximate same seat Mateen was in at the Clinton rally was taken by former Congressman Mark Foley, who is a former congressman because he was caught sending sexually explicit messages to male pages under eighteen.
People who think a candidate should be punished for who decided to show up at a mass rally can choose between the father of a psychotic alleged jihadi who could not distinguish between jihadi groups that are trying to kill each other or an alleged pedophile.
Cousin Ray was unhappy. “Could I just take a meth cooker, two shoplifters, and half a dozen drunks to be named later?”
The Independent reported about a book collecting Syrian voices against the culture of violence that is taking over public and private space in that ancient land: Syria Speaks: Art and Culture from the Frontline. The benign subject did not keep a reader, Faizah Shaheen, from being detained for questioning.
A crewmember on her Thomson Airways flight spotted Shaheen reading Syria Speaks and decided she might be a terrorist. At the Doncaster Airport in South Yorkshire, she was pulled out of a line and questioned. Shaheen is Muslim but was not wearing the hijab, and in her job with the British National Health Service, she is responsible for fighting the radicalization of Muslim teenagers.
“Could have been worse,” Cousin Ray mumbled. “She could have been reading The Anarchist Cookbook.”
The Independent used Shaheen’s story in a roundup of persons ejected from airplanes:
*Italian economist Guido Menzio, who is not a Muslim but is an Ivy League economist, was escorted off an American Airlines plane when another passenger incorrectly identified the mathematical equations in his work as Arabic script.
*Southwest Airlines ejected University of California student Khairuldeen Makhzoomi when he was overheard speaking Arabic.
*Faisal and Nazia Ali were ejected from a Delta flight from Paris to Cincinnati because they were alleged to have used the word “Allah” and they were said to be “sweating.”
*Mohamed Ahmed Radwan was taken off an American Airlines flight when he complained of a flight attendant announcing his name and seat number on the public address system and stating, “I’ll be watching you.”
“I gather,” Cousin Ray deadpanned, “she was not singing?”
Buzzfeed reported that Rocky Suhayda, chair of the American Nazi Party, wrote the following in his newsletter (caps in original): “We have a wonderful OPPORTUNITY here folks, that may never come again, at the RIGHT time, Donald Trump’s campaign statements, if nothing else, have SHOWN that ‘our views’ are NOT so ‘unpopular’ as the Political Correctness crowd have told everyone they are!”
Suhayda described a Trump win as “a real opportunity for people like white nationalists.”
A report in the Boston Globe added that Rachel Pendergraft, national organizer for the Knights Party (affiliate of the KKK), is using the Trump campaign as a recruiting tool.
Former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke has filed for U.S. Senate from Louisiana with a full-throated endorsement of Trump and probably hoping Trump has some coattails. Duke did assure the voters, “Donald Trump is not a racist.”
On his radio show back in February, Duke told his listeners, “voting against Donald Trump at this point is really treason to your heritage.”
Jared Taylor of the white nationalist magazine American Renaissance made news when he recorded a robo-call during the Iowa caucuses urging support for Trump. Since then, he told The New Yorker, “I’m sure he would repudiate any association with people like me, but his support comes from people who are more like me than he might like to admit.’’
Chairman Suhayda of the Nazi Party said on his radio show back in July that a Trump win is “gonna surprise the enemy…”
Just glancing at The New York Times headline caused a WTF? It read, “How Lowering Crime Could Contribute to Global Warming.”
The numbers are published in The Journal of Industrial Ecology and the bottom line is that persons in prison have very small carbon footprints. British researchers assuming the sentencing practices of their home country estimated that reducing domestic burglary by five percent would increase carbon emissions by 10,000 tons, equivalent to about 2,250 households in Britain.
The Washington Post juxtaposed two stories that suggest people have expectations about homicide and react accordingly.
Punta Gorda, Florida is in an understandable uproar because Mary Knowlton, 73, was participating in a lethal force simulation for the Citizens Police Academy. It was a role-play not intended to involve loaded weapons, but a loaded weapon was discovered when a police officer taking part in the simulation shot her dead.
Below that story was the news that Chicago just had the deadliest day in over ten years, with nine people shot to death and 10 more wounded.
The Tennessean reported that Timea Batts, 11, was shot dead when she startled her father. Her father, Timothy Batts, was working two jobs but had taken off work to meet his daughter at the end of her first day in middle school.
Batt nodded off and was asleep when his daughter came home. She arrived an hour earlier than expected because of the change in schools and yelled out a greeting. Her father awoke just enough to be alarmed and took her for an intruder.
CNN reported on Olivia Sievers, a flight attendant stationed in Germany who often works a flight to Buenos Aires, Argentina. On one trip, she was walking near her hotel when she happened upon a stray dog of indeterminate parentage.
She fed the dog and played with him a bit. He followed her back to her hotel and slept on the sidewalk in front of it. Over a period of months, every time she was in Buenos Aires, the dog was in front of her hotel waiting.
She gave the dog a name—Rubio—and arranged for Rubio to be adopted. He ran away from his new home and the next time she came to her usual hotel, there was Rubio.
She flew Rubio home to Germany. The second adoption seems to have worked out.
Cousin Ray pointed out that she didn’t exactly adopt Rubio---Rubio adopted her.
The Cherokee Phoenix reported that Cherokee Nation citizen Zana Johnson, 19 and a sophomore at Eastern Oklahoma State College, released her first CD, We Praise, on the TMG label.
The CD is gospel music, but her cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” beguiles me, a slimmed down interpretation of some 80 verses Cohen wrote.
An artist can, picking verses, make the song Jewish (as Cohen is), secular (as I am), or Christian (as Johnson is), but the tune allows her to demonstrate interpretive powers impressive now and bound to improve with maturity.