Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Why The Media Should Stop Using The Word 'Overdose'

I've been pondering this heroin topic and think I see at least one problem that I'd like to bring to the attention of deep thinkers like myself. The problem is the use or misuse of the word 'overdose' when describing a death from drugs. It's sloppy, which is no big deal in modern journalism, but it is sloppy and also and insult and also misleading and also false information. And in this particular topic the use of the word 'overdose' is so misleading and false that it actually contributes in a way to the problem itself. I don't think journalists intend to magnify the problem because that would mean the journalists actually took some time to think about what shit they are writing and what topic they are writing about, but I suspect they merely write their essays paint-by-number style and give no thought outside of interchanging nouns. One week they write about legal prostitution, and the next week they write about heroin use...the same article format is used in both, total bullshit, and they swap some nouns and think they are big heroes. Well, this kind of sloppy writing is infectious because it makes any asshole who reads the paper some sort of half-assed authority on topics that a journalist made no effort to understand from an intelligent perspective. They merely want to sell copy and they are also probably dumb to begin with so what kind of intelligent examination is a CNN hack capable of really? none.

So, let me explain why they are further magnifying the drug problem with their misuse of the word 'overdose'.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Dinner

Oggy collapsed near the broken carbon-fiber picnic table, amid discarded fusion batteries and plates of protein bar residue from the CHEEP production process. Oggy thought he might be allergic to the residue or to some chemical in the protein bar that was liberated by the process of reduction. He examined one piece of plastic, or was it carbon fiber? Oggy reached out, distracted from all other stimuli, ignoring the feuding rats and the nagging prostitute bawling near the Dispos-all toilet shed. What was this artifact? Was it from a pair of biodegradable wrist cuffs that the police were using during their CHEEP raids? Possibly, but, it may have belonged to a personal communication device, long obsolete and broken down to harvest the circuitry, gold and microchip. Yes, Oggy recognized a hint of a shape where the case of the old digital device curved around the camera lens. That corner had been engineered for that purpose, thought Oggy, and now it lay here among the residue of rat feces and used Ultraviolet sterilization packages for temporary spermicide. Who could have predicted this fate? Not the engineer of the robots who manufactured it nor the drones who shipped it nor the consumer and then the pirates who scoured the landfills to retrieve the broken device and bring it back to the crude labs for disassembly and meltdown. This small portion of the case had broken off and been swept into a bag that later was used to transport donated food or clothing to the shelter. That was probably the timeline of this article of plastic, but it was not a complete timeline and Oggy stared deeply at the plastic shard as he tried to visualize the details, to fill in the gaps in the timeline as far back as when the plastic was in a boiling vat of ingredients waiting to be injected and molded, the workers...was it possible human laborers were needed during that process? It depended on the age of the device. There was a time when robots did not rule the workshop floor and humans still monitored or controlled the machines. That was important because the exact chain of commands that led to the molding of the molten plastic may have been controlled by humans or it may have been automatic, regulated by algorithms and supply demands and production quotas. The molding process itself may have taken place in the evening, or the morning, or on a full moon, or a full moon obscured by clouds or a tropical storm. Which tropical storm? Which moon? What continent? Well, it would be Central America, up until the civil war when the manufacturing was moved to the artificial islands in the Gulf. The timeline was impossible to complete with what little information Oggy had so he experienced a grinding frustration at the inability to fully visualize the lifespan of this piece of plastic. Why was it so complicated? He could see the groove where the circuit board would slide into, the small groove where the circuit board had once been but had been removed in order to harvest the chip and gold. But under what conditions had the board been installed and by whom did the board get removed? What was the person's name? When did the robot laborer get manufactured? What weather conditions were present during the harvesting process? Had that taken place here in Santa Cruz or elsewhere, had the workers been singing, what song were they singing? There were unsolvable mysteries because all Oggy had to speculate on was a piece of plastic no bigger than a Fiver Coin. So many mysteries, so many unsolvable riddles. A rat scampered through the debris, dragging its heavy scrotum over the trash.

"Dinner!" cried a scallion from near the entertainment tube.
The denizens of the shelter ceased their agitated milling and moved as one toward the tube. Oggy still held the piece of plastic and examined the circuit board groove with his finger nail but he watched the residents limp like brain-hungry zombies toward the tube. They gathered in a tight circle with those in the back climbing boxes of discarded fruit to see better. The tube glowed to life and a low murmur replaced the jabbering mosaic of hysteria.

"We had the slow-roasted roast beef," began the solemn gender-fluid voice within the tube. "And it was good. The sauce was not too salty..."

A man near the middle of the audience grinned like a grave-robber and said loudly, "Nothing wrong with salty sauce. I..."

"Shut up! Wait until dinner is over." shouted shrewd voice from within the audience.

The voice from within the tube continued, "...and the mashed potatoes were made with real butter..."

Many of the audience moaned with pleasure and a few murmured, 'butter...'

"I wanted the corn side dish but my husband talked me into getting the green beans and we shared the special summer slaw. It was all delicious. My only complaint was that there wasn't enough bacon in the beans. I give the restaurant 5 stars..."

The tube glowed silently for a moment and then turned off. The audience began to shout for seconds.

"Play it again! We want more!"
"Play the part about the bacon!"
"I want the one where she likes the medium rare steak!"
"I liked yesterday's pizza dinner better!"
"More mashed potatoes!"

Oggy watched with cheeks sagging over his fleshy frown as the audience clapped their wooden limbs and stomped their feet in hysterics until the dinner was served again. Oggy wanted to participate but the circuit board mystery bothered him. What was pure and right in a world where this piece of plastic had become so orphaned after so much love and attention was spent to produce it?

The tube spoke again: "We had the slow-roasted roast beef...."
The audience finished the sentence as one: "...And it was good."

Oggy nodded and whispered, "The roast beef was good because the sauce wasn't too salty." 

He got goosebumps as a twinge of warmth from a genuine memory came back to him, a real memory, not the ones he borrowed at the library, though hazy in image the smell was authentic, and a twist in his lips almost made him look happy.

Monday, October 17, 2016

The Commoditization of Everything

God help you if you need a job in America. The days where you applied for an open job position and then learned if you were hired or not are long gone. In its place is a step by step journey through online form purgatory and an eventual descent into digital limbo. My theory, that deserves more research, is that every step in the employment process has been commoditized or turned into a money-making enterprise. I me an that in the old days you would go to a job location and speak to a HR associate who would give you an application. The HR associate worked for the company hiring and they were actually interested in filling the job opening. That is no longer the case because of the ridiculous regulations involved in Human Resources became a career in itself, a full-time job with complicated details that overwhelmed a normal HR department. The company got sick of keeping up with all the insurance/medical/workmans comp/drug screening/payroll that they outsourced that side of the business to HR management firms that manage employees for other companies. This has been a trend for at least 20 years and confirmed by the fact the biggest employers are temp agencies. Temp agencies actually have no jobs, they do nothing, except they manage the HR department. That's all they do. They pimp their brothel of employees (bums sleeping in their lobby) to real companies. Temp agencies manage employees and deal with payroll and hiring and firing and sick leave and insurance and all the tedious bullshit that a respectable company like Apple or Ford does manage on their own. But smaller engineering firms and construction companies can not handle the turnover of temp employees so they outsource that to temp agencies. I'm not sure what these people process since the application is online and I have become my own data entry tech, but let's assume they do some fact checking and calling my references. It's simple and caused by tumor-like growth in the HR regulation department. No one is to blame, but let me tell you what this causes.

Because each step in the hiring process has been outsourced and I am beginning to suspect that the outsourced companies that are responsible for the HR department are now actually sub-outsourcing further elements of their responsibilities, every step in the process now makes someone a little bit of money...but doesn't end up with a person being hired because that's totally separate from their objective. It's like the high-risk mortgage commodities market except in the form of job applications. I don't know much about the mortgage meltdown of 2008 but I know folks were making money off of flim-flam and that is what is happening with the temp agency market. Let me defend this theory in case someone out there with the ethics of Mickey Mouse wants to make some money....

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Deep thoughts

U know what the difference is between individual people belonging "officially" to individual nations and individual people belonging to one united citizenship of Earth?  Paperwork. A bunch of forms with your name on them processed until someone says you belong to another country. It's pitiful. Nationality is defined by paperwork and an obsession over invisible geographic lines.

Also, conversations about frivolous emotional irrelevant events are useless. Your health is the most important thing you will deal with followed by the health of people close to you. That's where the majority of our conversations should focus. The obsession with emotional triggers is blatant manipulation by crazed affiliate marketing websites. They merely studied Nazi propaganda techniques and Bernays-ian psychological manipulation and applied that to their content so an audience would be trapped in a happy/sad cycle. Ponderous. Focus on your health, ignore 90% of every media source, cultivate a trade/skill, financially support businesses you have close affiliation with. That's it.

Friday, October 14, 2016

B Goode


Another song from the Parking Lot Sessions. This time a slow cover of the popular blues tune about an illiterate guitarist from Louisiana.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Sangria Blues

I made it easier for all my fans in the UAE to make this your screensaver.




The Sangria Blues is yet another song inspired by living in the Walmart Parking lot. I just now notice that I can see the Walmart sign over my left shoulder. classic. As I have proposed, we are all living in the 'Walmart Parking lot', but only I live in the official Walmart Parking lot. But do not deceive yourself that you live outside the parking lot. No, it's a big lot. And the junkies and nickle prostitutes, the worn car parts and flea dogs and puppies and abused diaper pails are your neighbors. Some people park in a distant space, and some people park near the Walmart door, but everyone is in the parking lot, bathed by the blue neon sign. Sangria is in the wine section, near the Dairy fridges. There are two architectural layouts of Walmarts. One has the dairy and wine on the right hand of the store, and the other has the dairy and wine on the left hand. I like the 'gender neutral' bathrooms in the back because I can sponge bath my ass crack in private there. Enjoy the song and remember to turn the light off on your way out. If my guitar sounds odd it is because this is my old Seagull that I glued the bridge back on with a hacksaw, and when I put a set of light strings on I found the G string was missing from some long distant patch job. And I had given away the original full set to a traveling band of gutter punks destined for New Orleans...so I had to take a bus into the Alamo district to find a spare 23 gauge string to complete the set. The guitar sounds good enough for the Sangria and Walmart parking lot crowd.


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Drubk and disorderly

The details are fucked. A man saod he would kill everyone in taco town. "Where is my shit?" This taco town in the place to b tonight. I am going to stay until the massacre and then live blog it with bilingual annotations. Snake skin boots and ego roots.
Oggy, watching the drama unfold as police, white trash and Taco town employees fight like rats over a piece of greasy fried chicken.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Things Doc Sends Me



I hung out with Doc in Texas in October 2016. He lived in a tarp hut that he pulled in his trailer on a bicycle. the bicycle motor was having problems and I almost let it go since I'm seldom in a situation where I can help anyone, but I am curious about those motors so I asked if he needed some help. And we cleaned the carburetor and it was ok, then we took the clutch apart and not only were the friction pads worn down to absolutely nothing, but one of the springs had broken and embedded into the clutch bell, so it had only 2 of the 3 clutch pads and the remaining two were worn out. Well, it was a surprise it ran at all. And he ordered a new clutch pad assembly...and then we dug into the transmission after the whole mechanism stopped turning and found that the two roller bearings on the clutch bell had worn out completely and all the bearing balls had fallen out after the retainer ring crumbled. This was caused by back pressure from the drive belt that can't really be adjusted.

I had dreams of a reality show where I go around the country helping people who live in their vans get the thing fixed up so they can drive again, doing it all in parking lots, on the side of roads, in snow, getting to know the owners in their own habitat, and fixing my van in the process too. It would be interesting, but of course no network has contacted me yet so this is the next best thing....

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Lack of Privacy

I learned how to repair shoes in Nicaragua so I bought some more time for my worn out running sneakers. The trick is to do it all on the side of a busy street under a shade tree. Americans throw too much away, waste frivolously and irresponsibly. The waste is out of control.

Can you pick which Jerk Hook is Guatemalan and which one is Nicaraguan? The difference is 80 years of U.S. Marines occupying your country and keeping it a defacto slave plantation to produce cheap fruit.

The heat loosened the glue of my bridge, so I stretched it open with overtight guitar strings, rammed a shim in the crack, forced some glue in there by standing the guitar on end and shoving a piece of plastic in and out...

...then totally panicked when my plan to clamp it failed because the C-clamp was half an inch too short. What followed was typical Oggy, shirtless in a public parking lot, tossing everything around to find some combination that will work before the glue dries. Ended up using my suspension strap rig, two wooden shims, and an old metal hacksaw. This guitar is my oldest possession but the thin tone does not warrant a $200 bill to pay a pro luthier to do this in a more pretty and private manner. All that matters is sufficient glue and strong clamps for an hour.


Friday, October 7, 2016

Trespassers Shall Be Shot


Another morning, another humiliating encounter with tattooed law enforcement. Fucking hell, every day I have to get frisked and searched and feed the same lines to the police. Unbelievable. And lately I am getting sloppy and staying in the Walmart parking lot after 8am. A decent hobo would leave at 6 or 6:30 and be gone before the day manager gets to work. But I got sloppy because I was drinking boxed wine in the parking lot last night, actually drinking enough boxed red wine to get drunk and ended up talking to a truck tow driver who was towing a long flatbed that had run into a wall and bent the rim so badly that it could not be replaced without cutting it off, and no welder could come out so he was going to drag the flatbed 15 miles, but the axle had come loose so the wheels of the front axle had to be chained up or else they would slide back and rub the back wheels and cause even more havoc. And then I took a full shower in the fucking Walmart parking lot, shampooing my hair, actually cutting my hair a little, drinking red wine, singing Western Swing songs. Insane and dangerous, disrespecful, waving to shoppers like we were close neighbors. I figure, fuck it, this country has gone to shit and if a guy can't wash his ass crack in a Walmart parking lot in full view of everyone in San Antonio Texas then what good is anything? I do not care. I am going to get hassled and charged with trespassing no matter what I do so why should I hide, why should I respect anything in this god forsaken hell? Respect is earned and whatafuckinburger deserves no respect. Police patrol like terminator drones, I piss in a jug and a guy in wheelchair with a colostomy bag has to empty the bag into a plot of grass. Is there any difference? Dogs shit and piss by the millions. So I gotta piss and shit in bags and shower next to a trash can in a parking lot. This is life. I don't like over priced bullshit hotels with false smiles and plastic wrapping on the toilet. I'm more Texan than a Texan. It's Oggy Hunting Season every single day and the police have me targeted for extermination. So I gotta sleep in a shade tree hammock and shit in a bag and get drunk and shower in a parking lot. So what? Covered wagon immigrants had it hard too. Texas was populated by folks from Tennessee who were invited by recent Mexican president to tame northern Mexico in exchange for land. It was technically Mexico and folks from Tenn. came here to be Mexican and kill Comanche. Well, they did the job so well that they decided they didn't want to be Mexican and they didn't want to be American either. They wanted a Texas Republic. And not long after they became a Lone Star republic they joined the Confederacy. And then they joined the Union because the money was better. SO DO NOT SHOVE YOUR FUCKING COP NOSE IN MY FACE AND CONDESCEND TO HUMILIATE ME LIKE I AM SOME KIND OF FUCKING SCUMBAG! This land was populated exactly by non-conformist vagabonds like myself and assholes later came and milked the fat tit of oil production to provide your paycheck and your nice tiger tattoos on your big bicep ego inflation. You want to define this land as Texan? Ok. It's just words, like pancakes only belong as breakfast food. Those are the words of assholes. It's dirt and grass and cow shit and you can call it whatever you want but when I have to wash my ass crack then I will do that wherever I please because that is what people do.

So I slept late, not hungover, but not feeling 100% right either, and the Walmart manager wakes me up banging on the van and I'm naked and get up. 
"You gotta get off the property!"
"Fine, fine. Whatever. I was a customer, you know." And I sort of laugh because I bought boxed wine with my last $3.22 in cash, drank it in the parking lot while I washed my hair wearing a peyote necklace, got drunk, and then danced around the parking lot with no shirt... but fuck him. I was still technically a customer.
"I don't care. This isn't a hotel. I got police coming and tow trucks."
"Wow. Y'all sound serious. I guess I'll move along." I figure he is bluffing, of course at that very second four police cruisers and tow trucks show up like they think they are Magnum P.I. with guns blazing to capture Al Capone. Oh, fucking Jesus, Joseph and Ezekiel. The same routine. Out of the van! Hands behind your back! Any drugs? Any weapons? What are you doing here? Why don't you have a Texas license? If you don't have an address then where do you work? You think this is funny? Are you drunk right now? Disdain and humiliation are thick on the cop's lips. Blah fucking blah. Again and again, hundreds and hundreds of police encounters.

Whatever.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Meet Me At Alamo Mission




Oddly prescient. I am lonesome and down in San Anton' and near the Alamo Mission...

Here is Part 1




The situation is complicated and probably beyond hope. Modern culture means chasing digital carrots to appease Fuckbook algorithm architects. ...
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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.