Chester and Ellen, a 19th Century frog-princess love story


It had to have been those muttonchops. Apparently they were permanently affixed to Chester’s face like birthmarks.


Most men go through periods of ridiculous experimental facial hair growth, but most guys “get over it” and resume their normal, conventional, and boring clean-shaven appearance eventually. The whisker look proves unable to sustain their interest or ebbing ego.


Not so with Chester. Seems sometimes that the 21st POTUS owed much of his historical significance to those wild sideburns!



He refused to shed the scraggly wiry crap for most of his adult life, from his early days when he was a lawyer, through his marriage, through his appointment as Collector of the Port of New York (a total BS overpaid position born of patronage and politics) which was a stepping stone to his Vice Presidency in 1880. Those muttonchops continued to accompany his portraits right though his “replacement” Presidency in 1881.


Can you imagine a man running for President sporting that kind of facial hair in today’s society? He would be laughed right off the podium.



Chester Arthur was a sort of “dandy” in that he enjoyed the regal participation in the finer things in life and was fastidious about his appearance. Evidently, facial hair like his requires serious grooming exertion most simple dudes don’t want to fuss over. This is why the “bald shaven” look adds to one’s manly mystique.


Upon assuming the Presidency, Chester Arthur was dismayed and disgusted by the state of the White House, which was now, at best, a sorry dung hole. It was infested with vermin and was literally crumbling before his eyes. He brought in some fancy designers who, over the term of his Presidency, refurbished the condition of the White House from utter disrepair to that of a sterling and dignified residence befitting the President of the United States, which it remained to this day.


More amazing to consider that Arthur was a widower. It wasn’t a “woman’s touch” that revamped the White House’s cosmetic image. His wife, Ellen, died suddenly from a pneumonia in 1880, well before he became Vice President.


She was a looker. In my humble and horny opinion, I believe she was the hottest First Lady in the history of the United States (all apologies to Barbara Bush).



Ellen was a good-looking lady and she assuredly did not have muttonchops. She was a talented soprano and was born with a striking personal palate of dark hair and eyes contrasted against alabaster skin. Her appearance is described in the following passage:


“Ellen Arthur had an ethereal presence, her physicality often noted by those who met her. Her pale skin contrasted with her strikingly dark eyes and eyebrows, magnified by her round gutta percha-rimmed spectacles…


Ellen was raised in Virginia and her family roots dated back about 200 years to the early years of the colony and her solid identification with the South tested her relationship with Chester, a northern boy from Vermont, during the Civil War. Ellen was a hottie and her ambitious husband definitely dated up. See boys? This is what power, or the lust for power, will get you, if used wisely, regardless of your crazy facial hair.



What on earth did Ellen see in Chester, anyways?


I find myself wondering this, but how can we know the social dynamic of their era. Social life was unrecognizable to what it is today. I would venture to guess that in 1850, “men were men,” even dandies like Chester. Men weren’t hung up on hair product or tattoos or artificial tans or protein powder. When the delicate line distinguishing men from women was easily delineated, the genders behaved more naturally and instinctively. Perhaps men, Chester included, simply wielded brutal masculine power in a primal manner that hypnotized their little dark princesses.


You may suspect Chester was a better-looking man when he married Ellen in 1859. Perhaps you reason his youthful face was more rugged or masculine, or that he was clean-shaven, but this is not the case. The young Chester, the lawyer Chester, obviously did not woo Ellen with his looks alone.



When Ellen died in 1880, Chester was devastated. He vowed to never marry again. He moved his bedroom to a different section of the White House so he would have a clear view of St. John’s Church which sat across the street from his window. St. John’s was Ellen’s childhood parish.


Chester’s Presidency ended on a much higher note than it began, but he left office after only one term and died from Bright’s disease shortly after.


The frog and princess were reunited.



The Journalitia vs The Police. The “re-radicalization” of blogging?

A great find by a blog I’ve denigrated remorselessly, laist, showcasing a video slice-of-life from a recent forum hosted by something strangely called the Society of Professional Journalists and its rambunctious San Diego chapter. San Diego doesn’t get press for this, but it is truly the Right-Wing loony bin of the extreme southwestern United States. During the forum, several dinosaurs spoke and illuminated us with their antiquated notions of every American citizen’s right to enlightenment and opinion.

The video:

Most flagrantly conservative was the faux nymp-lesbo who went first, Jan Caldwell. Most blogdom went crazy about her comments which, I will admit, were probably the most repulsively cyber archaic, however, the ensuing panel speakers were not so versed in modernity either.

Caldwell, with her weird fluttery bangs dancing military-like across her serious man face, reiterated that she was a “mirror” of us (reporters and, ahm, bloggers); in other words, she would treat us like we treated her. She had a defensive boner. Major penis envy from this law enforcement chick. They are all alike.

The face of law enforcement in the year 2013. Alienating liberals and conservatives, alike.

I’ve predicted here that the day law enforcement begins to treat Libs and Cons as the group “opposition” is the day that civil revolt is at hand. This will be the day we can finally proclaim that police forces across America have become corporatized watchdogs for the elites. The way officer Caldwell spews her shit, it’s obvious she, and the SD Sheriff, have no regard for the common man. She speaks for the elites. And she taunts us. She basks in her stupid PIO (public information officer) role and essentially tells us that she is the only real source of information in town. Speaking from the formal, journalistic viewpoint, that is true, but most journalism with an edge gets the best information from “non-official” sources now. Take that, “Jan.” The blogosphere has bred a culture of Deep Throats.

Later in her spiel, she devolves into a strange rant about bloggers who weigh 500+ pounds and wear “fuzzy slippers.” Oh, and they use Apple laptops.

Damnit, I wish I had one. I sure don’t have any fuzzy slippers but I’ll pass on those.

Her condescending, 1980s-style condemnation of a citizen Journalitia is embarrassing to watch. This is how police “think.” It is a snapshot of our police protectors. Police are the only people still mired in the antiquated notions of society. Police have no idea what goes on in the deeper recesses of cultural think; they deal with street ruffians daily and this becomes their life, their existence. Police are estranged from the other half of life. Organized police do not have the ability to shift with the sands of social change.

Police are the most closed-minded entities in the civilized world. Jan Caldwell displays this in the most exemplary fashion. She is a cultural Luddite!

Look, I hate the way society has evolved. I don’t have a smart phone, I don’t give a crap about pop culture, and I sit here distancing myself from mass idiocy whenever I can and boast of it, even, but I know where I stand in the grand scheme of things. I rant, I rave, I opine, but ultimately, I believe I refrain from that preachy bullshit. If I’m using this blog as a forum to discount your legitimacy because of what you wear or what you believe, please tell me. I’m an open-minded lecher.

Caldwell is a closed-minded lecher, just like all her other badge-wearing hooligans.

My favorite moment, however, was lost in the shuffle. It was something the second speaker, Darren Pudgil, a former spokesman for the San Diego mayor’s office, said.

“Well, there’s a growing number of bloggers.”

Wow, it’s great one of these people acknowledge the Journalitia.

“People have computers, laptops, can be sending stuff out all the time.”

Bold is mine:

“For us, we look at the entity. What type of audience does the media outlet have. How large? What type of reach do they have? Is there just a single guy out there…most of the bloggers are a little…’out there.’ And aren’t really informed, and have agendas.”

Ah yes, bloggers are the pot smokers of 2013. Bloggers are the individualists, the lone wolves, the separatist thinkers. All the shit elitist police militias hate.

Bloggers are the counter-cultural journalists and police are THE CULTURE. They can’t fathom or humor anything but.

It’s 2013…has blogging become radical again?

I’m not a self-hater, but there are too many damned Mexicans in California


Interesting California graphical map forecast in the NY Times today.



Click to enlarge


The graphic illustrates California’s impending “Hispanicification” in ten-year intervals, beginning in 1980, and continuing though 2020, when a forecast demographic trend predicts Hispanics will be the ethnic majority in the state. The year 2020, when we can once again establish an Aztlan government or whatever foolishness today’s young toy-Mexican revolutionaries get riled up about on the campuses of junior colleges.


I’ll tell you what…it feels an awful lot like 2020 already in most of LA County. Often, I will walk out of the house and experience this reaction.



We are taking over this state.


Wait, forget that. We have taken it over. We run California. All our corrupt leaders and log-jammed promises of ethnic excellence just settle like dark brown silt over the Golden State’s quivering welcome. We are everywhere, in your face and spoiling your idyllic paradise.


Frankly, I don’t like it. Surprisingly, or perhaps not, LA County’s Mexishare (or Mexiratio) is less than 50%, but numerically we are oozing out the palm trees and ice cream trucks around here. I feel like such a tired commodity. I’m no snowflake in SoCal, man. I’m a dime ‘o’ dozen in Los Angeles.


I want to be different, I want to be unique. I want to move to Humboldt County! In the late 70s, my parents drove us to Washington State and we stopped in Eureka to awe over the gray and rocky Northern California coast, and an oldster in a pick-up looked us over and asked if we were from “down South.” Duh. Perhaps his inference was way, way down South. How could he tell? I felt unique. I don’t like to be around too many of my type. Not because I don’t like them, but because they remind me too much of myself.


Around here, I walk down the street. Mexicans.


Ride the bus. Mexicans.
Get something from McDonald’s. Mexicans.
Go shopping. Mexicans.
Wash my car. Guess!


Mexicans come in all flavors, all colors, but in East LA, it’s a given that everyone you encounter is Mexican, and can in fact be spoken to in Spanish regardless of how they look. I get opened to in Spanish a lot but I look Mexican, so it’s not that shocking, but I’ve known Asians who get spoken to in Spanish around here. It’s comical and a revealing insight into the racial spectrum of the Mexican people.


Still, the standard issue East LA Mexican is usually dark, short, mustachioed, and has a slight paunch. A baseball cap and white boots are optional but highly encouraged.


I feel way too normal and indistinguishable here.


When I attended Cal Poly, Pomona, in the early 80s, I felt like I was one of 3.5 Mexicans on the campus. I was young and overwhelmed, but I would eat that rarefied presence up now. Even in my daily, non-East LA life, I’m around non-Mexicans very often, and it’s kinda cool but can also be just as irritating because White people wear thin too. White people, especially the “Industry” folks, are just as monolithic and aggravating as the East LA Mexican hordes.


And don’t get me started on the Hollywood Jews.



F**K Mindy McCready’s dog

We live in a really sick society. We treat people like crap, but we worship animals. We are so blinded to this behavior that we don’t realize just how deranged we look and sound.

So Mindy McCready kills herself just a month after her boyfriend, David Wilson, similarly killed himself [On edit: Wilson’s cause of death has not been conclusively determined as suicide; he did die of bullet wounds on the porch where McCready killed herself, however]. They leave 2 children behind, 1, the son of Wilson and McCready, orphaned. Wilson and McCready damned at least one child to a harrowing life that will require utmost care and delicacy in order to prevent a generational lineage that is in danger of playing itself out like a typical Country-Western ballad of misery and dissolution.

But we care about the dog.

Why Did Mindy McCready Shoot Her Dog?

The dog, the dog. Why did she kill the dog?

A human tragedy unfolds and we preoccupy ourselves with the dog. There are two young boys in foster care. Left alone by not just one, but two, incidents of parental self-inflicted violence. This is the worst tragedy imaginable…but we care about the dog.

McCready endured a living hell and obviously was unable to cope with her life’s sorrow. The moments leading to her suicide, the fear of losing her children, is one of the most depressing stories of our day. But that dog…

However, as the article comforts, McCready killed the dog out of the kindness of her tormented, suicidal heart. When there is no human succor to be found, we find solace in animals because we are unable to be human.

“Mindy really loved her dog and that would not have been an act of malice at all,” a pal told Fox News. “It would have been more of a case where she just didn’t want to leave the dog alone.”
Dr. John Draper, the Director of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, agrees that such an act had nothing to do with the pet’s behavior.
“One thing is for sure is that she was obviously feeling very close to her pet and that this wasn’t an act of hostility with her pet,” he tells omg!. “It was probably more a statement of her close identification with her pet… I think what is often seen in these kinds of murder suicides is not just so much taking them with me as wanting to end the suffering for anybody or anything that you love that might suffer.”

So the dog, according to some people, was spared a lifetime of “masterless” limbo but the children, well, hey, who needs parents when you have the dog pound?

The scourge of impatience

There’s a scourge among us.

A scourge, I say!

A cultural blight, the most intolerable behavior, in my eyes.


Impatient people and their hurried impatience make me sick. I have no patience for impatience. Impatient people tail-gate, they roll their eyes when you’re carefully placing your lunch in common fridge, they tap their feet, they walk too fast, and they nearly collide with you in the grocery store because they burst out of everywhere in a mad rush.

When I was a child, I was tormented by impatient people. They made my life a helpless hell. I was a child, I could do nothing. I could not tell my teacher to chill, I could not tell adults to “wait, damnit.”

Now, as an adult, I have a sense of power and defiance I could never dream of as a kid. Now I mock impatient people, and frequently, I’ll take my time just to piss them off. I take my time. You’ll get there when you get there. Take a break, quit buying into the stupid Western self-important mindless frenzy. Integrate the concept that A and B are merely two points on the continuum and each intermediate spot between both is as vital to your existence as the beginning and end. In fact, I would argue, there is no true beginning or end to our compulsive adventures. Beginning and End is a human construct. The points you’ve denoted as beginning and end mean nothing other than the label you place upon them and the strict time scale that you place between yourself and the destination.

I hate impatience. Impatience affects me directly in near collisions and passive-aggressive sighs, but something occurred to me. Impatience is also a blot on my life in an indirect manner.

For instance.

I was in a major minor car accident last month. I call it this because it was major in the respect that my car was hurt badly but minor because neither I or the other party were hurt. My car suffered body damage in addition to other damage to the internals (suspension, steering). My car has been in the body shop going on a month this week. In fact, we are approaching their “estimated” date of completion. I miss my car, but my life is not severely disrupted since I routinely take public transportation to work about 2-3 days each week even when I have a car. I don’t drive around a whole lot because gas is expensive. I don’t do much outside my apartment, if I can help it. Incidentally, I have the “cheap” insurance, so my policy doesn’t pay for a rental car. Look at it this way. I bought my car in November, 2011, and I don’t even have 9,000 miles on the odometer.

I wish I had my car. I would love to drive the damn thing to work once in a while because the absolute commitment to the daily bus and train ride to and fro work every day is a little trying. I realize there was a tremendous amount of work that needed to be performed on my car and the last thing I want to do is rush or pressure the body shop with impatient helicoptering. I know someone who was in a similar situation last year and toward the end of the repair period, she was calling them daily for updates and predictions. It was brutal. She was being very impatient and I felt she lacked empathy for the people who were making her car well. I called the body shop on Wednesday for the first time since they began working on my car. I merely wanted an idea of where they were. I made it clear I was not rushing them. Still, the guy handling my car repair talked in vague circles, made promises, and embellished the deadline which led me to believe my car might be ready this past Friday. I didn’t receive a call on Friday, so I called on Saturday morning. Once again, I tried to make it clear that I was sorry to bother, I realized it was a big job. He still talked in circles and I suspect used a little embellishment again. Spoke of performing checks I assumed would have been done earlier in the repair cycle. It seemed he was conjuring a story in order to sate me.

I just wanted to tell him, “It’s OK! I’m not your typical impatient customer. I really don’t care when the car is ready. I only ask for honesty.”

I get the feeling he is not lying as much as being dishonest. He’s stretching the truth…buying time. Saturday he told me that they might need a part for the steering column and that it might even be done by Monday. Today. Today, no call. Were they even open?

I feel I’m paying the price of his strategic dishonesty because he is so accustomed to dealing with a constant stream of impatient customers that he has created a coping tool of “customer pacification” whereby he avoids honesty in order to get impatient customers off his back.

But I can take the truth. But but he won’t give it to me because he has been trained and molded by aggressive customer impatience and I’ve been lumped in with “them.” He doesn’t care that I’m patient, or “different”…he’s handling the situation in the only way he knows.

I just want a fair appraisal of my car’s progress, but impatient people have prevented that from happening because of their hounding.

I told the guy I would call back in a week if I don’t hear from him. Screw this.

I’m patient.