advice to close out 2012: don’t let your girlfriend hear you having sex with another woman over the phone, even if it seems impossible for that to logically happen

so let us close out the year in the fashion with which we’re all accustomed: a slightly-delayed update composed primarily of mocking and/or complaining about things in the news! well, maybe things will be better in 2013, and maybe not, but we’re all welcome to engage in a little bit of hope around the eve of the new year, right? right? well, anyway, let’s just get on with the update and see if we can improve upon things next year…

the Scissor Sisters?
searched for “parrot listens to Scissor Sisters’ music,” received these buttocks. thanks ever so much, Google

parrot listens to Scissor Sisters’ music

…which is a TERRIBLE title for the article. terrible! the subheading is more informative –“parrots have musical tastes, with some preferring classical works and others pop tunes, scientists have found. But the creatures do not like dance music”– but unless you’re really into the Scissor Sisters and/or parrots, i don’t think you’re majorly hooking the reader. except that i AM intrigued by the possibility of parrots being enraged by dance music. stupid parrots! anyway, there’s an article here:

“They are known as great mimics, but now scientists have discovered that parrots also have varied musical tastes — and an intense dislike of dance tunes.”

what exactly does the “great mimics” thing have to do with this? is the standard belief something along the lines of “animals can either be mimics or have varied musical taste, but not both. never both! UNTIL NOW, THAT IS?” because if it’s not, this is just lazy writing.

“Researchers monitored the listening preferences of a pair of African grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus)- a popular pet species, pictured – and found that while one favoured soothing “middle of the road” music, the other opted for more upbeat, modern pop. Both birds also enjoyed rock and folk music and “danced” along, by bobbing their heads and legs. They even “sang along”, by squawking. But neither animal appreciated electronic dance music, which left them both distressed.”

is this the time when we make fun of researchers studying these kinds of things on the public dime?! BECAUSE THOSE ARE MY TAX DOLLARS WE’RE TALKING ABOUT! (insert outraged noise here) i mean, not literally, as i understand this is taking place in the UK… anyway, anyway, what’s weird to me is that “soothing “middle of the road” music” and “upbeat, modern pop” sound like the same damn thing to me, a dilemma not addressed by the clarification of what each kind of music we’re talking about which will be coming later in the article. granted, i like all that hippety-hop garbage, but still, confusion reigns.

“Dr Franck Péron, from the University of Lincoln, said: “The birds clearly showed preferences. One preferred the rhythmic and one preferred the classical. There is no trend for the birds. Even if they are in the same place hearing the same things, they do not prefer the same music.”

seriously, i LOVE how serious the tone of this “discussing the music parrots enjoy” conversation is.

“The research initially involved three parrots, Léo, Zoé and Shango, being played a series of “rhythmic” songs, including tunes by U2, UB40 and Joan Baez. They all appeared to enjoy this and were observed dancing and singing along, with excited calls and human words. They also listened to several cantatas by Bach which appeared to relax them, encouraging them to rest and preen themselves.”

several things:
01. UB40 made the cut to get played for parrots AND mentioned in this story? HELL YES;
02. seriously, though, are U2 and Joan Baez really “rhythmic” music? i mean, okay, it’s music and so it has some amount of rhythm on principle, but when someone tells me “hey, i played a bunch of rhythmic songs for some parrots,” i don’t think of stadium rock and old-school activist folk rock. i guess to me “rhythmic songs” sounds more like older soul music? like the Temptations?
03. U2 makes you dance, Bach makes you groom yourself. got it.

“The two male parrots — Léo and Shango — then took part in a second trial in which a touch-screen monitor was left in their cage, with two large buttons, which could be pressed by the birds’ beaks and which activated a 15-second segment of two different songs: either I Don’t Feel like Dancing, by the pop group Scissor Sisters, or the more soothing La Petite Fille de la Mer by Vangelis. The touch screen was left in their cages for a month and the birds were allowed to select the music whenever they wished. Although the pair liked to listen to both songs clear preferences emerged — with Léo consistently choosing the Scissor Sisters and Shango opting for Vangelis.”

now we return to my point. granted, i do not listen to either the Scissor Sisters (whose name is apparently based on EXACTLY what you think it is) or Vangelis (although i at least recognize him from the soundtrack to Blade Runner), so this comment is based on ignorance and Wikipedia, but i understand them to both be creators of “pop rock,” with one being admittedly more toward the classical end of the spectrum. also… “I Don’t Feel Like Dancing” isn’t basically dance music? the thing that enrages parrots? alright, whatever.

“The birds’ aversion to dance music — by acts such as the Prodigy and the Chemical Brothers — was not discovered under the test conditions. It emerged when the researchers were listening to music of their own preference within earshot of the birds.”

this is where some snide science type yells “not discovered under test conditions? THEN I GUESS YOU DISCOVERED NOTHING!” not me, though, because now i have useful information for my war against parrots. on the other hand, i do remain bothered by being forced to call them “THE Prodigy.” doesn’t “Prodigy” just sound better as a band name?

“Dr Peron explained: “The electronic dance music was not appropriate for them. We had the radio on in the office and when it was a very fast beat, they started to scream; not in a friendly, communicative way but in a distressed, scared way. They seem to like pop music when there is a voice.””

you know what else has a voice? a lot of electronic dance music. this is not really coming off as the most scientific observation i have read about recently, Dr. Peron.

“He said the findings, which will be published in the journal Applied Animal Behaviour Science, would be useful to owners, who could use touch-screen technology to provide their own “jukeboxes” for their parrots.”

findings published in a journal! well, that’s certainly something. i’m not sure if it makes all the time and money invested in this research worthwhile, but it’s certainly… something.


women in Florida are apparently battering the hell out of men for being bad at sex

now, okay, this is not as bad as being disappointed with sex and filing a false rape claim as a result, but it still seems a little excessive. i mean, i can see how this is an emotional topic and a fight might occur, but it’s not appropriate, right? right? well, someone better tell these women in Manatee County, Florida, because they are absolutely losing their minds over the topic. from a little while back:

“A Florida woman was jailed last night for a post-coital assault on her boyfriend, an attack the victim says was prompted when only he climaxed during a sexual encounter in the couple’s residence. Raquel Gonzalez, 24, was arrested Monday afternoon for felony domestic battery and booked into the Manatee County lockup, where bond has been set at $750.”

so was this, like, the very first time this had happened? because if not, it’s definitely excessive, and if so, well, shouldn’t you give the man a chance to put his respective work in? i guess what i am saying is that i find this assault excessive no matter what the circumstances are.

“Deputies noted that Davis and Gonzalez were “involved in sexual intercourse” when “Esric then climaxed and Raquel did not.” Which reportedly angered Gonzalez, who allegedly “began hitting and scratching [Davis], causing scratches near his eye and nose.” Davis told investigators that Gonzalez “goes off” frequently and that she had previously been physical with him. At one point, Gonzalez told deputies, “I have scratches on me too from where he tried to restrain me when I lost it.”

i have to figure it’s not a great legal strategy to declare that not only did you “lose it” (as opposed to, say, something about “mutual combat” or “righteous vengeance in response to selfish sexual intercourse”), but also to say your injuries came when someone was FORCED TO RESTRAIN YOU? i guess the real question is, aside from the sex motive, why did such a fight occur? well…

“A sheriff’s report indicates that alcohol may have been a factor in the alleged battery.”

MAY have been a factor? when there’s a crazy assault charge, alcohol is always a factor. always. anyway, so that was late November, and then in late December…

“A Florida woman is jailed on a battery rap for allegedly striking her boyfriend after he “finished first and stopped pleasuring her” during a mutual oral sex session late last night in the victim’s home, police report. Jennie Scott, 50, was booked into the Manatee County lockup on a misdemeanor charge stemming from the 11 PM encounter in the Palmetto bedroom of Jilberto Deleon, 32. Scott has dated Deleon “for the last 5 years on and off,” according to a sheriff’s report.”

now, in this case, i have to admit that this sounds like a more offensive situation than the previous one, but at the risk of being sexist, a 50-year-old lady with a 32-year-old boyfriend? some might say he’s doing her a favor just by showing up. not me, though, i love all women and would never say something that’s a combination of sexist and ageist just to get some laughs. perish the thought.

worse, though, is that this situation devolves into a couple of scenario where i cannot quite figure out how things happen as written:

“deputies were summoned to Deleon’s home by a witness who heard the couple arguing and saw Scott (seen at right) atop Deleon “punching and scratching him.” she also allegedly struck Deleon with a stick and threatened to hit him with a wrench before the tool was taken from her hand by the witness.”: wait, so this fight occurred as a result of selfish oral sex in a bedroom… but the argument was seen by a witness? who was then close enough to disarm the drunken, wrench-wielding Scott? how did this chain of events occur, and how public was the oral sex?

“A deputy noted that Scott said that she was also mad at Deleon because she had “heard [him] having sex with another woman over the phone earlier in the day.”: so, she heard him having sex over the phone? how… how did this even occur? she called him while he was having sex with another women and he took the call AND continued having sex while answering the call? because that is the most logical explanation i can come up with, and it’s completely stupid and completely crazy. COMPLETELY CRAZY.

in short, these deputies really, really need to tighten up their report writing, as well as whatever part of their investigative work leads to good reports being written, because i am dying over here.

“Scott struggled with deputies before being placed in a police cruiser, where she kicked a window until being warned that she would be maced unless she stopped.”

i have never, never understood why people do this. you’re in custody! you’re just adding a charge to whatever they hit you with, only it’s one you’re not likely to dodge! unless…

“Bail has yet to be set for Scott, who deputies described as “extremely intoxicated.””

what was that i said? “when there’s a crazy assault charge, alcohol is always a factor. always.”

so there you have it: 2012 is over, 2013 begins. so we’ll see if we get any better at this update thing…

your token 2012 holiday placeholder: Christmas edition

more holiday placeholders! and not just for Christmas (ugh, Christmas, the holiday where people give me telescopes; damn those telescopes), but for the true December holiday: the anniversary of the birth of my sainted grandmother (such a nice grandmother). anyway, you know the idea: we’re taking another week off (as well as sarcastic reminding ourselves about that whole “oh-so-incomplete 11.16 update” thing) in order to, again, bake a lot of pies (because you know how we do) and whatever else you’re supposed to do on the holidays aside from “drink” and “have regrets” (as this is truly how i spend ALL the holidays). and now for a moment of (upcoming) Christmas cheer:

seriously, i need one of those dolls! oh, and happy holidays or whatever.

focusing on a pigeon: our major Raiders highlight in 2012

the funny thing is, the original story below? almost got worked into an update in 2009. or, hell, maybe it DID and i have totally lost my ability to confirm or deny this. still, after the events of the Raiders/Chiefs game, it seemed like, well, two 50% shares of a weekly update might actually turn into 100% of an update. we’ll see if that’s true.

Raiders, Chiefs... and a pigeon
i am not saying it’s sad to be focused on this while watching your team play… but yeah, yeah, it’s sad

pigeon stands tall as Raiders, Chiefs play all around it

so while i continue to watch Raiders games for reasons i don’t fully understand (i am leaning towards a cross between “severe masochism” and “some kind of low-grade undiagnosed mental illness), it doesn’t mean that it is ALWAYS without enjoyment (i mean, they DID beat the Chiefs on Sunday) or, even better, ridiculous events.

“You wouldn’t think a Raiders-Chiefs game in December would have many highlights, and most times, you’d be right. But amazingly enough, Sunday’s game featured one of the more bizarre sequences of the year. In the second quarter, with the Raiders driving around midfield, a pigeon showed up on the field … and absolutely refused to leave.”

with all due respect to Jay Busbee, if you’re a Raiders fan, there’s always at least the highlight of beating the Chiefs. ALWAYS. but yes, this pigeon was completely out of control. now, granted, they’re rats with wings and often seem to know neither shame nor fear, but you would think they would possess SOME rudimentary level of concern for their own well-being. after all, we’re talking about a field choked with 300-plus-pound men locked in hours of violent combat, something that would probably leave a pigeon worse for wear if there was to be a surprise collision. but these pigeons…

“Early on, Raiders wide receiver Denarius Moore nearly stomped on the pigeon on an inside route. And several times, the bird clearly lined up in the neutral zone, which is clearly an infraction but for whatever reason didn’t draw a flag. He proceeded down the field as the Raiders progressed, but neither bird nor team could reach the end zone before time ran out.”

now for one thing, Denarius Moore is surely too classy to STOMP on a pigeon; for another, the Raiders did score points before the half, they were just all field goals. why am i defending this team? years and years of ingrained abuse, i suppose.

“The bird hung on into halftime, and appeared as unfazed by the Raiders cheerleaders as it had by the Raiders offense. Make of that what you will.”

honestly, i would think that the Raiderettes would be one of the few areas in which the franchise hasn’t taken a severe beating over the past decade. it’s… it’s been a long decade.

“The Raiders grounds crew finally wrangled the bird into a bucket during halftime. Perfectly on cue, the Raiders’ PA announcer played “Free Bird,” and that was the last we saw of the Oakland Pigeon.”

thumbs up on the “Free Bird,” but thumbs down on wrangling this pigeon into a bucket. a bucket? a bucket? no one could round up some kind of net to snare this thing in? there’s NEVER been a stray pigeon incident before that they would be prepared for?

except here’s the thing: i KNOW there’s been a stray pigeon incident before that. let’s take a quick trip down memory lane:

Raiders personnel versus pigeon
well, at least it’s not a bucket

Raiders’ Justin Fargas: pigeon on field was spirit of Marquis Cooper

so not to make light of what was a tragic situation (even more tragic than a normal Raiders season? BAM), back in 2009, Marquise Cooper was playing for the Raiders and went missing on a boating trip; he and two of his friends disappeared and are presumed dead. this was sad, but not that crazy until what happened shortly thereafter:

“During Sunday’s Eagles-Raiders game, a pigeon went onto the field, stopped briefly near where the Raiders were lining up for a kickoff, and then flew downfield in the same direction as the Raiders’ coverage unit. It made for a funny viral video, but one Oakland player, Justin Fargas, thinks it was much more: he thinks the pigeon was the reincarnation of deceased ex-Raider Marquis Cooper.”

as Justin Fargas (no great shakes as an NFL running back, i suppose, but i fondly recall his speed and incredibly fragile body from years-ago Madden franchises) is the child of the child of Antonio “Huggy Bear” Fargas, i presume he may have been exposed to a variety of chemicals as a young child, and thus might be prone to flights of extreme drug-induced fancy. still, he seemed very sincere, if perhaps aligned with spiritual and religious beliefs that i do not personally share.

“Cooper and former Detroit Lions defensive end Corey Smith died in a boating accident in February, and Fargas said in a radio interview this week that he thinks Cooper may have come back to Oakland in the form of that pigeon. “It seemed comfortable on the football field and comfortable flying down there literally on special teams,” Cooper said on KHTK in Sacramento, as transcribed by Sports Radio Interviews. “It very well could have been Marquis.””

now granted, he does cite the pigeon’s level of comfort, something marginally more fact-based than something like “i just had a FEELING it was Marquise Cooper” … but still, yes, a little bit crazy, as it very well could have been, you know, just a damn pigeon.

“Fargas’s belief that Cooper came back to Oakland inside the body of a pigeon strikes me as more than a little odd, but if that belief helps him through the grief of losing a friend, well, more power to him. If Cooper is helping the Raiders in the body of a pigeon, the Raiders will take all the help they can get.”

the latter part? sad but true, both in 2009 and now. but maybe one day…

“or, in short, this is the universe saying to you, ‘FUCK YOU, BUDDY, FUCK YOU.'”

…and we’re back to the usual routine of “posting commentary on random news articles,” because i suspect we all get a little sad if i neglect doing this usual kid of update for long. worry no more!

James R. Irvine
James R. Irvine: not the classiest of pit bull owners, but on the plus side, at least he didn’t beat his dog into biting the kid

Palm Coast man accused of leaving pit bull to baby-sit infant

i have to be frank: this story was brought to my attention by my grandmother, who sometimes reports CRAZY versions of actual events to me, but in this case, she was entirely accurate:

“A Palm Coast man is accused of leaving a pit bull to baby-sit for a 10-month-old while he went to a local bar, according to a Flagler County sheriff’s report. James R. Irvine, 41, was arrested and charged with child neglect at 12:30 a.m. Saturday after the child’s mother reported that he left the infant alone while she was at work, the report states.”

this is where the Irishman would like me to mention that the pit bull terrier was once known as a “nanny dog,” loved and trusted to watch one’s young children, so THAT part of the story might be totally above-board. luckily for us, however, i doubt that the classy James Irvine is going to restrict his behavior to “leaving my 10-month-old child in the care of my cool dog.” there’s also a concern that the kind of idiot who leaves a child alone with a dog is not the kind of guy who does a great job training his dog, but we’ll leave that matter aside for right now.

“The mother, who is not named in the report, told deputies she left Irvine in charge of her son when she left for work on Nov. 30. She called several times before 11 p.m. with no answer, and the last time Irvine picked up the phone he told her “I’m watching the game” and hung up on her, according to the report.”

like i said, CLASSY. but this does make me wonder WHY this guy left his child home with the dog if he was at home watching the game. i mean, if you’re home watching the game, isn’t that the best possible time to be assigned to watch your child? you two can bond over the (presumably football) game together! unless you’re not so much watching the game as tragically drunk or something…

“The woman arrived home and found Irvine trying to get in the garage door, the report states. He eventually told her he had been “having a few drinks.””

ah. well, i suppose the vast majority of these stories can be explained with “so it turns out this gentleman was incredibly drunk,” so i probably a) shouldn’t be surprised by this development and b) should MAYBE get some new material for these updates, or at least some material with slight variations going on.

“Irvine told her he had not “left the baby alone,” according to the report, because the “pit bull was watching the baby.” The baby was in his bedroom with the door shut, the report states. “The dog was sitting outside the room, and the baby was crying,” a deputy reported. The mother checked on the baby, who was “wet and clearly hadn’t been changed in a while,” according to the report. Other conditions in the house, like cats shut in a room and cat food put up on the counter, were as though everyone would be “out for long periods of time.””

so i DO love the rules-lawyering “TECHNICALLY THE BABY WAS NOT ALONE” excuse; also, i suspect the baby was crying because he knew there was a cool dog right outside the room that he just could not get out there to play with! granted, i know the baby was wet and that MIGHT have had something to do with it, but as i recall it, the only times i cried as a child were the times i was banned from playing with a cool dog.

“Irvine refused to open the door, but told deputies “he had been on the couch all day and night watching TV,” according to the reports. Deputies then went to McCharacter’s on Palm Coast Parkway and spoke to a bartender who said she was familiar with Irvine and had waited on him about 9:30 p.m. She said that he was supposed to return to pay his tab, the report states.”

what i LOVE about these half-assed claims of innocence is that there is ALWAYS someone ready to bust them. first off, telling the police they can’t come in, but words words words is absolutely code for “you can’t come in because it will facilitate you busting the LIES LIES LIES i am about to tell you regarding my care of children.” second, that bartender who can absolutely identify you is NOT going to lie for you unless there’s some wonderful reason to do so, and there never is. third, “supposed to return to pay his tab?” James Irvine, you are a fucking moron begging for legal consequences.

fourth, the bar’s named McCharacter’s? i cannot tell if this is lame or awesome.

“She gave deputies a tab for $23.50 for a total of six beers, according to the report, and positively identified Irvine. Irvine was booked into the Flagler County Inmate Facility and later released on $1,500 bail.”

see, and again, WHY can’t these guys just stay home and save some money on the $24 worth of shitty beer they drank? go out, grab a six-pack and go home and watch the game and the kid at the same time. DONE AND DONE. but then it’s not like i’ve been in a position where some lady is asking me to watch our child. this is a decision i may never have to make.

Lynette Lee
this is clearly not the facial expression of a woman who is easy to satisfy, although one suspects she doesn’t have all the options she thinks she does

woman files false rape claim because she ‘didn’t enjoy it’

“A Clarksville woman has been charged after coming clean to police and admitting she lied about being raped.”

now, lying about rape is a really unfortunate action, and i’m not sure there’s a good reason to do such a thing. let’s examine what hers is:

“Police said Lynette Lee admitted to a Clarksville detective last week the rape claim she had made earlier in the month was false. She said she had only made the claim because she did not enjoy the date.”

well, that’s certainly something. but it does make me wonder if this is more “we went on a date and i felt the man was insufficiently romantic” or “we went on a date and there was sexual intercourse that i did not enjoy,” the former being more of a “i felt i was burned in this social exchange” and the latter more of a “i am going to need a man to eat some pussy occasionally.” i do not know which of these would actually be worse!

“On November 23, Lee had told police that after meeting up with a man she met online at Meetme.com, she and the man had gone back to a hotel together. According to a report, Lee said once at the hotel the man removed her clothes and, despite her protests, had sex with her. The suspect in the case was called in by Clarksville police and told officers he and Lee had been out on a date and engaged in consensual sex.”

and i really do feel bad for this guy. he probably doesn’t have a lot going for him, hence the reason he’s meeting up with a woman i will uncharitably call “not much of a looker” for some presumably awkward motel sex. i don’t say this to mock the man, i say this because he probably ALREADY didn’t feel great about himself. and then the lady goes and claims you RAPED her? jesus fucking christ.

“During a second interview with police on November 27, Lee told the detective she wanted to drop the entire case because it was a lie. Police said Lee told them she had lied about the incident “because she did not enjoy it and it was bad.””

…and then it comes out that the reason you were accused of (and thus almost charged with) rape was that you were BAD AT SEX. this is the universe saying to you, “hey, not only are we going to make it so that you’re forced to settle for only the chubbiest of ladies to chase, but we’re going to make them get so enraged at your clumsiest of attempts to sexually satisfy them that they attempt to have you charged with sexual assault.” or, in short, this is the universe saying to you, “FUCK YOU, BUDDY, FUCK YOU.”

and on that note, i am sad and thus done for the week. not much of an update but… it is what it is.