iNews reported that a Christmas service in Sri Lanka was accidentally enlivened by a printing error in the booklet of lyrics handed out for singing. The Ave Maria somehow got replaced by Tupac Shakur’s Hail Mary.
The Guardian reported that the booklet was provided by Joy to the World 2016, one of Sri Lanka’s largest “carol services.” For those reading along to sing along, the ode to the Virgin Mary began, “Makaveli in this … Killuminati, all through your body. The blows like a twelve-gauge shotty.”
Both songs ask the Virgin Mary to intercede for sinners but, The Guardian pointed out, “Tupac’s version is more exhaustive in detailing the exact sins in question, including murder and drug-dealing.”
My cousin Ray Sixkiller reminded me that it might have been in honor of Tupac’s induction into the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame. I don’t think so, and to emphasize how unlikely that is, here is Tupac’s last performance of his song—delivered in 2012 by hologram. (CAUTION: EXPLICIT LYRICS)
All reports agree that there was no comment by the organizers and the comments by the worshippers were quietly voiced to each other.
“Mary,” Cousin Ray snarked, “was on the job for Joy to the World 2016!”
Every year, the Transportation Security Administration announces the top ten most “unusual” items confiscated during the year at TSA checkpoints. Two replica hand grenades made the list this year, one trailer hitch and one that just appeared to be a gold plated grenade.
Cousin Ray assured me there is no truth to the rumor that the passenger with the colorful hand grenade was named Auric Goldfinger.
There was a pistol. What was unusual? Well, where you would expect Sturm-Ruger or Smith & Wesson or Beretta, it was branded Hello Kitty. Oh, and it was pink.
And some rocket scientist had a replica suicide vest in his checked bag. Can’t imagine why that would upset anybody?
And the winner, the number one unusual item found at an airport checkpoint comes from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. A somewhat worse for wear corpse that turned out to have been a prop in Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
“Next time,” Cousin Ray chuckled, “pick your souvenir prop from Gone With the Wind.”
The TSA released their list on December 22, leading me to wonder if they expect weirdness to take a holiday between the 22nd and the 31st?
Carl Paladino was Donald Trump back when ignorance and insulting voters exacted a political price. He paid that price by not being elected governor of New York in 2010, but Trump proves that candidate Paladino was a man before his time.
Paladino, New York co-Chair of the Trump campaign, got asked by Buffalo, New York’s Artvoice what he would most like to see happen in 2017?
Obama catches mad cow disease after being caught having relations with a Hereford. He dies before his trial and is buried in a cow pasture next to Valerie Jarret, who died weeks prior, after being convicted of sedition and treason, when a Jihadi cell mate mistook her for being a nice person and decapitated her.
The interview went on with Artvoice asking who he would like to see go in 2017?
Michelle Obama. I’d like her to return to being a male and let loose in the outback of Zimbabwe where she lives comfortably in a cave with Maxie, the gorilla.
Those remarks were too much even for the Trump transition team, which made a written statement calling Paladino’s remarks “absolutely reprehensible” and adding that they “serve no place in our public discourse.”
Paladino rejoined that it could have been worse if it were “politically correct.”
Public discontent continued to rumble, probably because Paladino holds a seat on the Buffalo School Board. The Buffalo Parent-Teacher Organization started circulating a petition calling for his removal.
After a week of twisting in the wind, Paladino issued a written apology to “the minority community” but still claimed he’s “not a racist” but “Barak (sic) Obama” is “a traitor to American values.”
A presidential inauguration normally means wall to wall partying in Washington with all music genres represented by the very best musicians but a special emphasis on the tastes of the incoming First Couple.
The Trump inauguration, though, is sizing up to be recordings and cover bands. The most star power confirmed so far is the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The Washington Post ran a story debunking reports that the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes are being forced to dance for The Donald.
So far, the Trumpfest is as short of poets as of musicians. JFK got Robert Frost, but that coup did not start a tradition. Bill Clinton got Maya Angelou. “There is no truth to the rumor,” Cousin Ray said helpfully, “that Mr. Trump will replace the public reading with a limerick contest.”
I guess The Donald will always have Ted Nugent.
HuffPost reported that Trump style politics is going international. By this I mean discourse in a fact free zone and government by Twitter.
Pakistani Defense Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif proved himself incapable of distinguishing fake news containing a nuclear threat by Israel against Pakistan. This in spite of the man quoted as Israeli Defense Minister having resigned that position seven months ago.
When the Pakistani Defense Minister took to Twitter to threaten Israel with nuclear retaliation over the fake story, the real Israeli official responded on Twitter that the statement attributed to Israel “was never said” and the reports “are entirely false.”
That ended the story, because it’s also part of Trump style politics to never apologize for anything. In a parallel universe where both courtesy and the truth are valued, that awful misunderstanding could have been an opening to better relations between the nations involved.
Jackson Diehl published an op-ed in The Washington Post offering an optimistic assessment of the fight to reclaim Mosul, the second largest Iraqi city, from ISIS. Diehl cited evidence from international aid agencies that “so far at least, the invading force has sought to protect rather than slaughter the local population. There is no indiscriminate bombing or shelling of apartment buildings; no executions of women and children; no mass disappearances of men.”
Fingers crossed here, but maybe the Islamic State has taken killing of innocents so far that the regional custom of fighting over who gets to prey on the civilians is withering.
Tabloids, particularly British tabloids, have been having a fine old time this month with recently discovered nude pictures allegedly of Eva Braun, Adolf Hitler’s girlfriend of years and wife of hours before they both suicided in a Berlin bunker as Soviet forces approached.
There have been racy photos of Braun before but not quite this racy. Hitler was known to disapprove of her skinny dipping and sunbathing habits, but he was too busy trying to destroy human civilization to enforce his rules.
Heike Görtemaker, Braun’s biographer, claims Braun would not have allowed those pictures because they were dated after Germany’s defeat at Stalingrad and the national mood would have been too somber. That does not reckon with the fact that Braun was not a public person. The public did not know of the relationship and so her photos would not have been the subjects of public comment, with or without clothes.
The untimely death of George Michael on Christmas set off a touching series of tweets by Sarah Michelle Gellar mourning the death of….Boy George. Oops.
Applied Animal Behaviour Sciencepublished research conceived by Colorado State University Professor Temple Grandin when she observed presidents of the U.S. going gray. Dogs, the researchers discovered, go prematurely gray in response to stress—being left alone for extended periods, loud noises, unfamiliar animals or people.
I was impressed that Cousin Ray sort of recognized Temple Grandin. He knew the name but not why. She is famous for earning a Ph.D. in spite of autism.
DuffelBlog reported that Santa’s database of naughty and nice background checks was compromised in a massive hacker attack just before Christmas. Santa is offering victims one year of free credit monitoring, a tin of butter cookies, and extra time on his lap as compensation.
CBS reported that Sony has been hacked again, although it’s nothing like the 2014 Sony Pictures hack eventually blamed on North Korea. The motive then was that the Dear Leader would not sit still for being ridiculed in a film Sony was about to release.
This time, the hack hit Sony Music and took over its Twitter account to announce falsely that Britney Spears had died in an accident. The only suspect so far is the group called OurMine, which has been hacking a swath through the entertainment business. OurMine claims to be helping corporations improve their cyber-security—whether they like it or not.
CNN reported that the Nigerian Custom Service has seized 2.5 metric tons of fake rice. Nigeria is a major importer of rice and the staple has been rendered expensive by a drop in the value of Nigerian currency in an economy already stressed by the slump in oil prices.
First reports were that the fake rice was plastic, but there have been so many contradictory reports since that the contents are not yet known. In 2011, fake rice was seized in Korea shaped from potatoes and coated with industrial resin. One Nigerian doctor commented to CNN on the Korean case that eating three bowls of that fake rice would be like ingesting a vinyl bag.
The Cherokee Phoenix carried an AP report that Oklahoma, after two years of cutting education and other social programs, is facing a budget shortfall in fiscal year 2018 of some $868 million, or about 12 percent of state spending.
Some Republicans are calling for more cuts to public schools, healthcare, and public safety. Secretary of Finance Preston Doerfinger, who represents Republican Gov. Mary Fallin in budget negotiations, was at least willing to forego anymore income tax cuts, and he even remarked that Oklahoma needs “to have a serious conversation about revenue.”
For Cherokee football fans, the Heart of Dallas Bowl brought good news in that most commentators agreed it was the most exciting of the early bowl games. Pulses were pounding when Army eked out a win over the University of North Texas by 38-31 in overtime.
The bad news in Cherokee country was that Coach Seth Littrell started senior quarterback Alec Morris to play his last game for the Mean Green rather than Cherokee citizen Mason Fine, who missed the last two games of the regular season with a shoulder injury after battling his way to the starting job in his freshman year. The coach said Fine was able to play but Morris had more practice.
After the game, Morris re-tweeted a threat he received over the loss: “I’m going to find you and kill you. Your mother deserves to die of cancer.” The guy this “fan” wanted to kill was 26 of 38 for 304 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. That’s too good a performance to be blamed for losing the game.
Fine will be the future of the Mean Green and that future looks pretty bright after the buzz this year generated. The Los Angeles Times said of the North Texas-Army matchup, “The bar has been set. The big-time playoffs have something to live up to.”