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and here's something
weird: my place
in Humor 3-space

Thursday, April 27, 2006
 
School is full of lies that even kids can tell are lies. They tell kids lies because they think the truth is too complicated, harsh, or just plain anti-American for young brains to handle, or more to the point, because school is not really about truth, or even education in its purest sense. Kids may not be able to figure out the whole truth, and they may not even care, but the effect of lying to kids is that you lose their trust, and they start to disengage. Maybe that's the point?
      One thing that always bothered me as a child was the story of how Louis Braille went blind. Do you remember the bullshit story? It goes: young Louis Braille is hanging around the early 19th century equivalent of the garage (come to think of it, I suppose it might have been the garage) and long story short he pokes out both of his eyes with an awl. Maybe he doesn't poke them out, but the implication is that of serial ruination, of sequential awl-putting-in-eyes.
     I don't care how young you are. That shit doesn't sound right. Who can continue to hold an awl after putting it in one of their eyes, let alone use it to fuck up their other eye? Well. I waited a long time to check the wikipedia about this, but I just did. Turns out he fucked up one eye and the other one went blind out of sympathy. See for yourself. Heh. Well, that makes a lot more sense now, doesn't it? He only poked out one of his eyes. Still, it seems kinda weird to be putting an awl in your eye, even if you're very bored. The kid was three years old, which makes it a little more believable.
     God, I remember the power the word "awl" had for me after I heard that story for the first time. And the actual object was like forget it. Whenever I got within five feet of an awl, I got very wary, because here was a tool that could make you do dangerous things. Was it like fleeting urges I used to have to fling myself from high places? They weren't suicidal, these urges, just curious, but they definitely gave the momentary sensation that I was not fully in control of my actions. I imagined awls doing something like that, hypnotizing children into hurting themselves against their will, like a haunted kitchen knife in a bad horror movie, infused with the angry ghost of its first victim. Maybe you weren't responsible for violent acts committed with an awl. Like your parents could burst into your room, see you standing over the corpse of your obviously awled-to-death little brother, and give you a horrified face like "what did you do?!?!" until their vision falls on the bloody awl in your hand and they go "Ohhhh," with resigned comprehension, Mom pointing it out to Dad: "Awl."
      Well whatever. I wrote this because even though the Braille story always bothered me, I have found myself -- as an adult, and while sober -- putting very sharp things near my eyes for various reasons that couldn't possibly good enough. Do you ever do this? I'll find myself looking very closely into the mirror with the sharpest tweezers ever made, and think "If a car backfired right now, or if somebody just said 'Boo' real loud, I could perforate this fucking eye. Maybe I should get this thing away from my peepers." But I persist with whatever cockamamie task I believe is being accomplished. Would you trim your eyelashes with a double-edged razor pinched between your fingers? I'm not quite that ridiculous, but the difference is scant. Stupid is.

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MY IMAGINARY GIRLFRIENDS

Chan Marshall
Rotem of the IDF
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Amy Goodman
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Maya Rudolph
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Imogen Heap
Caroline Dhavernas

Shana Rae Ray

DISALLOWED FOREVER

"I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you!"
-
"from whence"
-
"...the exception that proves the rule"
-
any use of the question "spit or swallow?"
-
the phrase "drop trou"
-
fake-o reviewer verbs:
"penned" for wrote
"helmed" for directed
"lensed" for whatever
-
"expat"
-
the euphemism
"passed away"
-
pronouncing merci beaucoup as "mercy buckets!"
(see also: "grassy-ass!")



PET PEEVES

"confinscated"
-
trying children "as adults"
-
"drownded"
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misuse of reflexive pronouns, as when someone says "Please talk to Bob or myself." Come on people now. "Myself" is not just a fancy version of "me"! LEARN IT.
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tattoos in the Courier font
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any use of Comic Sans