Cap’n America Doesn’t Live Here Anymore

 

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from Thunder Road, on the Born to Run album. 

No savior is gonna rise from these streets. That’s a reference to a Springsteen song. This post will be, mostly, about the Mueller report as summed up by Trumpie the KKKLown’s toadie, Dildo Barr.

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Um, Mr. Dildo? He admitted to…it’s all in interviews, caught on film, at rallies…um.

Did I get petty enough to satisfy there?

The longed for report dropped after two years of speculation, anxiety, high hopes and dread. That’s from everyone, in all sides of the political spectrum. Yep. So!

It was turned in on a Friday eve. We all–those tuned it to this reality marathon television show with far too many ep’s, or so it seemed–went WHAT DOES IT SAY.

So, Dildo Barr said he’d prepare a ‘report’. Everyone totally, like, believes KKKlown isn’t shown what’s in it as he doesn’t tweet.

He’s not tweeting!! What?? Has the earth started being round or something????

Yet, at Mar-A-Lardo, there was a giant party. On Saturday nite! Drinking, underage trafficked girls as supplied via China through some other massage parlor outfit…you know it, I know it. Let’s stop pretending, m’kay? Let’s stop pretending only the left peddles nubile children for Satanic rape consumption, geez. 

But it’s rich white guys who have an R by their name so it’s forgivable and everyone does it so why are you getting upset, snowflakes??

Ahem. But her emails! Lock her up! Hillary sold uranium. Bill did worse things than Trump, who’s now a real Christian, he’s just learning right now… so how hypocritical are you? Tolerant left my ass!

You hate Jesus and America! Fuck you, commie socialist traitor pigs! Dyke race traitor bitch who hates men! Race traitor! Now go burn down a building, antifa bitch. You lefties are all violent thugs!

—Just to be clear– the above is an actual rabbit hole I got sucked down into when I dared question Der Gropenfuhrer’s gropings—

Lindsey Graham, head of whatever committee that will ‘allow’ the Mueller report to see the light of public scrutiny…partying at Mar-A-Lardo like a pearl-clutching Christian Rock singer. Lindsey Graham, whose dead pal, John McCain, was trashed globally by Trumpie the KKKlown.

Do you like old man cum on your face there, Lindsey? You must. A lifelong friendship means less to you than trying to get MAGA sorts to vote for you? Oh honey.

So!

Dildo pens a four page very hasty book report-like summary of the Mueller report…which, I must emphasize, NO ONE HAS FUCKING READ OUTSIDE OF THE MUELLER TEAM.

Not any of the press.

Not your basic hillbilly strict Constantitutionalistista who reads at a six grade level but can recite 2A like a boss. Just ask em!

Not your average Starbucks-slurping Millennial avocado-breathed weeper.

Not even other lawyers not associated or working on Mueller’s team! Because those working on all this had to turn in their smartphones.  Because people don’t talk to actual other people anymore or somethin’. 

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Barr got it Friday evening, had a four page ‘summary’ out by Sunday of a big ass document that covered two years of crap and stuff that spawned quite a lot of charges, indictments and prison time.

Yet…somehow…KKLOwnstick VonTreasonhead had no idea of the crap and stuff going on about him at rather intimate levels?? He had no idea his fixer Cohen was…??? Or that Manafort…?? Sure, Jan. Sure.

Mueller didn’t clear him or exonerate Trump, by the way.

But that gets whispered and buried. It’s just a big ole Party in the Fourth Reich by the GOP and their toadies, stooges, hanger ons and brown-nosers.

Um, guys? There’s still all those other investigations goin’ on. Um, guys? You might actually have to bribe and threaten a lot more peeps here. Checkbooks out, boys! Flex those stubby tiny fingers! Prepare to write giant numbers you can write off as charity deductions! Ha ha ha!

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I’d laugh if this were some other country. This is something that happens in Italy. Or some fourth-world African warlord’s bloodied bit of land.  This is Nicaragua!

Or your basic PTA elections. Ha ha, I kid. I kid!

I’m sure those sitting in somewhere like Finland or Narnia are going, WTF is wrong with America that they let this go on? They might use far too polite language and big words. Or not say anything, just roll their eyes as they glance away from the hysterical headlines to get back to their Proust. As they sip fragrant cups of orange pekoe tea while munching ginger bikkies.

These are the times when Americans sadly wait for some savior to rise up, and, well, save them. You realize we really are waiting for Captain America to show up, beat the bad guys to a pulp, deflect bullshit bullets off that shield of his all while saying charming, clumsy things. That the dust will settle, the baddies will be suitably gone, punished, vanished, turned to ash. Then Cap will give us all a giant group hug, smelling of Christmas trees and birthday cake. America will be nice again and sanity will reign once more. Ah! Cute! We Americans are so cute with our savior complex.

Someone else will rise from these streets! A hero will rise! Not anyone we know and certainly not me but… A HERO WILL RISE OH YES. And everyone will rally behind him.

[It’s always a him hero in ‘murica.] 

We’ve been trained, too well, that protest and action, unless done by right wing sorts, is bad. So bad. Far worse than whatever is being protested again. It’s far worse to be Antifa than an Alt Right Nazi Tiki-torcher who runs over a woman, kills her, with his car.

Heather Heyer, ahem, ahem!

I wish I were kidding. But.

There is a history of that. Turning protestors into the ones that need quelling and jailed and even killed. They should have been at work or home, not acting like thugs, the snowflakes, lol.

You’ve read the comments, you’ve heard the Fox News snippets.

We’re going to have to do more than wait for our next chance to vote. As the right wing is working super-hard to ensure any vote cast even vaguely left doesn’t count at all, ever, ever again. Which turns America into a one-party country…which turns America into an actual fucking dictatorship.

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I wonder, when or if that happens, if the left will still be preaching politeness and waiting, saying things like the wheels of justice turn slowly but they something something. Um, justice? When you pay off the giant debts of a supreme court justice or when you stack the courts with Bible thumpers? Justice doesn’t have a chance, darlings.

These are the times that show us how passive we’ve become. Well, the younger generations seem oddly fired up and ready to savage the older generations into actual corners. Where they will wield chairs as the old lions snarl to the last bitter breath in their bloated moist bodies.

South Korea, after all, took to the streets to oust their corrupt leader. And they’re very polite. And Korean. They don’t even have a Fourth of July!!

You hope someone will throw some nukes at us before it gets to Civil War, Part II, Revenge of the Economically Anxious. I think I’d rather deal with a Mad Max world than try to live in New Gilead. Good thing I already know how to make bread or I’d be no use at all to the Commanders. Hallelujah. Under His Eye.

Book Report by D. Barr, Donnie Rump and Leatherface Graham! For the next hour we’ll wildly speculate and make up stuff that will then be taken as truth! Because news, schmewz, all opinions are true! 

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Ditsy Scatterbrained Hagfish

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from Redland City Bulletin. Hello, last remaining bee!

As I microwave my ancient morning coffee, which is ice cold, I ponder. I wonder. I’m also ovaries deep back in a Wonderfalls revisit. Talking souvenirs and kitsch objects giving cryptic instructions to a slacker chick. Because reality right now is just…um.

I wonder what it will take the crack the sneering veneer of Trumpikans. An actual murder? I wonder why the Democrats still have their velvet, be nice, gloves on.

Take em off, you squirrels. Take em off.

Stop playing nine-dimensional chess with assclowns swinging battle axes at everything in sight they find scary, threatening or scary. You two groups are not playing the same game. For thirty some years now, dears. Yeah.

I put half a candy cane in my microwaved coffee, by the way. Just for full disclosure. Yes, I still have candy canes left over from Christmas. Shoo fly, that might have been the last remaining bit of one. Can you buy candy canes for Easter? Honest question. I like mint, peppermint, the general mint family. Snapple with mint is still right up there as one of my favorite drinks of all time. Do they still make that? Honest question.

BRB!

I don’t believe Snapple makes this anymore. My hasty, barely glanced at google search seemed to find no evidence that Mint Snapple is available in March of 2019. Sad. Sad!

Spring has sprung. The spring bulbs planted eons ago yet again shove up their spiky green leaves, with hints that tulips and daffodils will soon follow. Bloom for about three days, then go back to sleep until next year.

The bees, all two of them, buzz about, inspecting me for pollen. Still don’t have any, bees. You’re making me nervous, bees.

Oh look, we still have bees. Global warming must be a hoax if I still see bees…

Seriously, Demo-door-mats, take them gloves off. Why do you think people are so freaked out by AOC??

IS SHE PLACATING THE VERY ONES PUNCHING HER IN THE FACE?

No, squirrels, she’s not.

I should run political campaigns, huh?

I’m trying to be super-cheerful. I don’t think I’m pulling that off. At all.

I’m readying my tiny bit of ground for a tiny garden attempt. My zukes were wildly abundant last year, yet my pumpkins, after a late belated start, were so so.

My eggplant…the less said the better but it was a weird ornamental variety. It tried. It grew tiny little eggplants!

Something kept eating or destroying my cukes and the summer squash never really got its engines running, if you catch my meaning.

The oregano went to town! My dill plant delighted me! The lavender, oh my! Lemon balm, never again. I don’t know what to do with it. I think I’ll try rosemary this year as I love rosemary in pretty much anything. Dill, yes! Sage and thyme! I might just go for spices and zukes and pumpkins.

I actually did manage to make pies from pumpkins I’d grown, after all. At least three!

I just need to work on my pie crust skills. Ouch. Ugly pies but they taste okay. I’m ashamed! I watch all those baking competition shows! My pies look like something that fell on the floor, then got stomped on by buffalo. I can and will do better!

I also need to dust off a novel that needs working on or finishing or…I’ll put a note up, stare at it a lot.

Work on novel.

Work on play.

Work on screenplay, you ditsy scatterbrained hagfish! 

Girl Power Turned Up To Eleven

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Lashana Lynch as Maria Rambeau and Brie Larson as Carol “Captain Marvel” Danvers

[[note– I promise this is cheerful. Fluff. Absolute fluffy kittens and unicorn dreams. ]]

I went to the movies yesterday afternoon. Guess what I saw? Not the cute dragon movie. Not the anti-romance romance comedy that I will probably really enjoy when it finally gets to TBS or TNT. The one with Rebel Wilson. That one.

CAPTAIN MARVEL.

Yes, that’s the obscure art house pic I suffered through. As those art house pics generally demand that you SUFFER to get to the end without throwing up, falling asleep or generally giving up ten minutes in during the first of many twenty minute monologs on how swift life is by a teen girl working retail as her mother does crack in the alley out back.

There were other people there. Sigh. I go to matinees because they’re [A] cheaper and [B] not attended by other people. Okay, whatever! Popcorn rustles, comments flying about me, soda pop being sucked loudly through hollow plastic tubes. The sounds of cinema! I arrive just before the previews start, so I don’t have to sit there pretending not to be making snide mind comments about everyone else there. As you do.

Previews. Avengers!! Tony Stark in outer space giving some sort of Hamlet-like speech. Captain America filling up with HOPE that some Hail Mary plan will work against a [guy, thing, god, dancer, evil bad farmer, etc?] who just took out half the known universe. What’s this…a new avenger might join in to CHANGE THE GAME? What???? Yeah, I’m so going to this it’s not even funny. I’m a weak-souled consumer drone mind-raped by Hollywood’s Satanic influences. You heard it here first.

LION KING. Now!! I’ve seen the cartoon version X number of times. Yet! I’ve got oddly wet eyes, so there must have been a drive-by onioning. Shouldn’t a live-action movie about animals use, um, actual animals who are not…Stop that, brain! The heart is sobbing right now! Shut up, brain! Disney, how dare you pile on the pathos!! How dare you!

There’s also a preview for a movie I’ve already seen soundly panned and ‘not wanted by anyone’– Dark Phoenix. Which is Sansa Stark getting all evil on Mr. Tumnus. There’s lots of screaming, explosions, people in extensive makeup with superhero hair looking truly magnificent. I wanted to see it. How evil does Sansa get?? Like, super-evil or just mildly evil where she kicks a puppy then goes to work for the ASPCA? I’m hooked! I also can’t wait until it’s on TNT in two or three years. Yay! Also, maybe the X-Men can call on Dani and her dragons to KICK DP’S bottom. Oh my, the crossover potential there. Game of Thrones meets X-Men. Somebody get on this one, stat!

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Holy cow bells, that isn’t a still for Capt. Marvel! Sophie Tucker will play Jean Grey again.

I could just do a blog post about listening to people snack in the near-dark and my reaction to the various trailers.

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Here we go:

Captain motherfucking Marvel.

That’s a Sam Jackson shout out.

Pretty much what you expect to happen, well, happens. Plot? There was an actual twist here that was pretty solid. I thought it went well. It was set up through memory loss flashes. Plus, any time you have a British guy in an American superhero movie…yeah.

Ooh, that was a sort of spoiler. Yikes!

But I had my suspicions. I don’t trust people who seem ‘nice’. They’re just not. In real life or superhero movies.

Carol, played by Brie Larson, was everything Girl Power needs. She’s fierce. She’s a fighter. She’s got hot hands…hands that light up and shoot lasers. Or fire. No, lasers.

She’s also a hothead who’s…wait for it…emotional. [I let out an actual WTF gasp at this.] Of course the Nice British Guy [Jude Law] hammers this one over and over and yet over again.

Our heroine also keeps having this memory of a female scientist [Annette Benning], being an Air Force pilot, having a life on earth. Vers, as she’s called now, lives on the Kree planet…here I just clocked out. More comic worlds I should know like the back of my hand??

God damn it, no thanks. I have enough crap crammed in my cranium at any given moment.

So we get Vers crashlanding through a Blockbuster after chasing the Bad Aliens, who are shapeshifters. Who can be ANYBODY, right down to their memories. Some of their memories…again, I checked out here, just rolling my eyes.

The movie took place in the Nineties. Ah.

Nostalgia, you tricksy blighter. Everybody laughed and sighed over the Blockbuster bit. The Blockbuster here in Ontario, Oregon went under overnight seemingly. In a day. It’s now a gym or get your taxes done here office front. 

CM goes on a Journey of Discovery with Sam Motherfuckin’ Jackson, which is Great Fun. We get to see her Kick Ass. A Lot. She was a one-woman Rambo aboard the Bad Aliens ship, after all. Well, she beat the crap out of large groups of extras. Those scenes where Our Hero or Heroine [Yay, girls can be heroes, too! Yay!] takes on legions and just GOES TO TOWN on their bottoms. Yep!

So, we get the Plot Twist. We get the Betrayals. We get the Moments of Doubt. We get the If You Need the Suit You’re Not a Hero moment that all Marvel movies seem to employ unblushingly. [I just watched one of the new Spiderman movies, where Tony Stark says this to Spiderboy.]

Now. All of that? I still enjoyed the ever-livin’ crap out of this movie. I was glad I left my house to go see it. I enjoyed the heck out of the trailers. I could totally get away from how my country seems hellbent on installing an actual dictatorship…Her Emails! Lock her up!! Build the wall! Fake news!

I felt an odd Captain America type hope that a Hero Will Rise. And save us. From ourselves. So we don’t have to do it. Yeah. The Home of the Brave and the Land of the Free fully expect to be saved from themselves by some superhero unicorn sort that everybody can get behind…ha ha ha ha. Sob. Okay!

Oh my goodness, there’s the thing with the cat in Captain Marvel. Ha ha ha. There’s also the rather sweet shout out to Stan Lee in this movie. Ah!

To sum up this Not Really a Movie Review so much as a Sprawling Mess, I really liked Captain Marvel. It fired on most of its cylinders. She wasn’t the grim awfulness of a Gamora. She was more a combo of Starlord and Wonder Woman. While your head explodes for various reasons from that…ha ha ha. Done exploding yet? Okay!

She kicked ass. Lots of ass. In satisfying ways. Things Blow Up. In satisfying ways. There’s a pretty good dogfight battle with Best Friend of Cap Marv. I liked it, anyway.

And the quickie scene after some of the credits played…yeah. You sit there, along with a few others, waiting for it. Waiting for it. Ah! What??!! Holy crap, so going to Avengers! Satan, see you in a few weeks! 

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The cat named Goose from Captain Marvel

What am I working on?

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New Puppy. Brigit. Don’t be fooled! She’s a perfect engine of destruction. 

 

It’s beginning to look a bit like spring time! I turned the earth over yesterday for my mini garden, Year Two. I’m also moving the stumps to New Locations. I am cognizant of both function and decoration via my mini garden. I am also eyeing the places where rabbits and ground squirrels like to visit. Plus, there’s the New Puppy. She likes to dig. Investigate where the humans go. Check out why the humans do this or that. I have a feeling my mini garden might not survive New Puppy.

Politics. If I. It’s just. WTF. I??!!

After that above enlightening delve into the current state of American politics, let’s move on. Oh sure, there’s a political rant in there eight miles long. It slaps the Spirit in the Sky, nut punches Jesus and generally includes words better suited for our POTUS and the Locker Room Boys known as the GOP. Anyhoo!!

What am I working on. Nothing.

That’s right.

I don’t have a PROJECT on deck or waiting in the wings. It just tires me to even think of rumbling up the engines right now. Or ever again. Which is troubling, to say the very least about that.

I have the Oregon novel. Which deals with the sorts that took over the Malheur wildlife refuge over by Burns. I really do wish to work on this. Eventually. It interests me. I like doing the research into extremist radical gun-toting scary ass militia groups as well as Oregon history. Scraping some sort of novel out of all that, interesting as well. But not right now? Or maybe tomorrow. Or.

Rework my Beastface Bay tales. Fuck no.

Start a brand new something. Maybe even a PLAY. What?? I never leave the house. What can I write a play on?

My conversations with the three dogs?

My inner monolog on trying to decide to make a pie or not out of whatever I can find in the fridge?

A family story that’s so boring it’s almost interesting but it’s not? Something I saw in the news cycles????

Seriously, when fiction can’t compete with your basic cable opinion piece on liberals taking their babies home to kill them, reported with a straight face as if true…yeah. You just kinda deflate like a sad little balloon writer-wise. Maybe that’s just me?

That’s total fiction, of course. But all we hear is that LIBERALS KILL BABIES here in ‘murica. It’s going to be a slogan for 2020. It’s predictable. They control the narrative, so they get to direct the narrative with the Lefties playing wide-eyed defense. It’s just…fuh.

Oh no, political rant about to snarl forth like a castrated lion looking for a snack.

Short stories, flash fiction, humorous essays? Mmm. Nope.

I seem to be running on dead writer batteries.

I even scraped myself together long enough to go to a FREE WRITER’S WORKSHOP. In Nampa, Idaho. It was on a Saturday, all afternoon, at the library, which was right by where that other writer’s gathering had been! So I knew how to get there and back again. Score!

It wasn’t in the downtown one-way hell of Boise!

Yeah, I went to the workshops, as there were four of them. I did three, then the fourth had to be held at a coffee shop, as the library closed at five. I just headed home, I’d had enough. All three of those were practical, well run, informative and actually helpful.

Death Rattle is the name of the organization here. I can’t say enough nice things about them. I’m glad they exist and that they’re nearby. 

I wish, sort of, I’d schlumped off to the fourth one. The drive back was right as the sun was going down, so trying to see the road turned into GUESS WHERE THE ROAD IS HA HA for me. I also treated myself to a sausage biscuity thing and an outing outside my present comfort zone.

I also felt guilty. I was wasting time. I was feeding my delusions that I’m a writer. I clearly am not a writer because writers, well, for one thing, actually write. 

My thoughts all the time. All the time. All the time. A constant punching stream, with me as that bag the boxers hit. Except it’s punchy thoughts that swing haymakers at whatever’s left of my drive, ambition or will to GET SHIT DONE.

Maybe it’s time for the ole writer standby of heroin, wine, mind-altering shit that allows one to be totally oblivious to reality while writing about reality. 

I am trying to co-write a screenplay. I should have whipped that out in a couple days. Nope.

To sum up!

I just need to retrain myself to start writing again. Something like that. Just put some crap down on the page! I am in a frightful abyss, looking upward for any bit of light. There isn’t any. I always admire people who are positive, or at least pretending super-alot. The ones who’ve lost their entire family to the local volcano, then found out they have brain cancer. Their dog then gets run over, and their house catches on fire. Yet, that person smiles at the world, going, oh, isn’t that daisy growing through the cracks of that mass grave grand?

Maybe I need to hang out with more creative sorts. That energy seems to sizzle the old writer batteries a bit. Except me and other humans have seldom gotten along. I’m always too much or too little in some way…it’s confusing. Oh sure, just be yourself! If I fucking knew who that is, I’d now be a teacher with a pension plan, a bad perm, wondering what would have happened if I’d followed my dreams…

You get hammered in the face, dear.

That’s what I’d tell that other me. You get hammered in the face and it’s supposed to mean something. That’s pretty grim.

Smile. You look so pretty when you smile!

So, there ya go. You’re all caught up on my Artistic Strainings. Thanks for stopping by. I hope…

mumbles something about almost ready to outline that Oregon zombie novel set during the imagined ages of Middle Earth if it were run by the Narnian minotaurs. Almost ready. Almost.

 

 

 

Christmas Cup of the Neanderthals

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The actual cup! 

It’s very early in the morn. The three dogs, Bridge, Molly and Jake, have decided THEY MUST GO OUTSIDE RIGHT NOW. I oblige. Out they go.

Bridge, by the way, or Brigit, has a new nickname. The Gremlin. As she is very much a puppy yet, with a propensity for chewing anything and everything. Her favorite chew toy seems to be the rug that overlays most of the living room floor. She will pull it back, then blissfully munch on the matting under that room-size rug. But she’s such a lovebug, how can you drop her off at the nearest shelter, with some mumbled story about how you have no room or some made up tale about allergies? You just can’t! She’s part Kelpie and all Chew Stuff Up.

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Brigit in her Gremlin phase. Ignore the dirty socks left to their own devices, thanks. 

The coffee has not yet been made. The odd thrill and ceremony of opening a new can of coffee. Sniffing the contents, which are probably sawdust with a bit of coffee air freshener sprayed near them. The water poured, the old Bunn squirting brown liquid into the squatty pot below.

My special cup gets taken down from the cupboard. For now, it’s a Christmas design on a white background. Holly berries and leaves. I like it! It’s a big cup, a mug. I don’t have to fill it so often. I found it at the thrift store, of course. Around Christmas, as they tend to put out Christmas items during the holiday season. There’s a shelf where there are items from many seasons. I pause before it now and then. Ponder the rapid evolvement of time, which seemed to evolve so slow when I was but a child. I then pat myself on the elbow for having such Original Deep Thoughts in a Thrift Store.

Ah, so. I have my rituals. As people do. It’s part of our instincts. Part of our heritage, something handed down through the ages. Rituals, ya’ll.

I was watching a youtube this or that on Neanderthals, as you do. After watching kitten rescues, why Bigfoot is actually running the UN with a fleet of global bankers, how to make flan…I happened across where did the Neanderthals go. Yes, they were, ahem, outbred by the new wave of humans or something.

Which probably sends an actual shiver of dread through your common variety average white nationalist. As they screech about how ‘those people’ are producing far more children than white folks.

[[Tangent edited out here]]

Art, ritual and artifice. That caught my wandering attention. As it’s been supposed that Neanderthals did not have language, art, religion, etc, etc and so forth. That they just wandered about, killed animals, ate them, um…not much else. The Cro- Magnons slaughtered them! Evil laughter heard here!

No, argue the solemn scientists and tufted-haired archaeologists. As DNA says these two groups had lots of sex and then babies. Those babies survived, passed down their DNA material, which is…evolution!

Are we still allowed to even discuss evolution in ‘murica right now??? Abortion, now evolution. I must be working for Killary and the Kenyan. I must be a commie! Sputtering sounds heard as my country recycles McCarthy, then mixes that with sexism, racism, birtherism and some other isms.

Neanderthal DNA is present to this day in our genes. More in Sicilians than anyone from Africa. As that band below the ice there in Europe, which ran across modern day France, Spain, Italy, Germany, was a hotbed of territory for Neanderthals and the uppity newcomers who invaded their areas. This was a Nova program, so you can go watch it yourself. It was quite interesting. Pay no attention to how I just butchered it.

But. Art. Ritual. Artifice. That these three aspects have been present in humans since…ever. The learned sorts on that Nova hour were ecstatic at finding evidence of deliberate burial. A skeleton found in a Spanish cave, in a fetal position. With a panther paw left nearby. Deliberate versus accidental! They didn’t find the rest of the panther carcass, the bone had been cut. Ooooh. There was also pigments found in a bit of seashell, as if the Neanderthals had been painting their skin with colored substances.

Rather like people do these days with sports teams, to show who are friends, who are enemies. That tribalism, ha ha, is also granted to the Neanderthals.

They’ve found bird wing bones with scores on them, hinting that these early folks cut the feathers off, as there’s not a lot of meat on a raven wing.

What does this have to do with your damn coffee cup, lady??

Ah.

Ritual. Everything is off unless I have coffee in a certain favored cup. I have two of them. But I mostly, for now, use the cup with some factory-slapped holiday design on it. Another cup feels so strangely wrong. I cannot explain it. Rituals of comfort, I guess. That sameness I can count on in a world…DEEP THOUGHTS DEEP THOUGHTS AHEAD.

I am not doing so well. In any way. Drinking the coffee from a ‘special cup’ might be part of the numbing steps I take to just get through the day. Which is also ritual.

Adornment was mentioned in that Nova program. Decorations of the person. It was supposed Neanderthals did not wear jewelry. Or paint their faces. Or make art of any kind…except we have cave paintings and all that. All that belief and supposition, of course, was due to…gulp, prejudice based on myths and notions about people whose skin is not, well, white. Why be coy? When the Neanderthal skulls were first found, then studied, it was supposed the people they belonged to were barely above that of your basic animal. That they didn’t speak, they were primitive as all hell, they were…not white people. [Junk science based on skull size, hello.]

You’ve likely heard this for years. Being called a Neanderthal is a generic insult to this day. They are the literal cave men when people sneer about cave men being “cave men”. Brutes who drag ladies about by the hair, tee hee. Grunty sorts who grunt and fart and drink cave beer. Tee hee. 

But now we have to cast that go-to aside. I blame Millennials. Until the next group we’re all supposed to scapegoat arrives, I blame Millenials.

Neanderthals bad, brutish, cartoonish villain-like figures. They were blended, in racist stereotyping, with the ‘mud races’, of course. However, science has uncovered, a tiny bit, that Neanderthals were far more complex, technologically advanced and generally not a simple or brutish set of rascals.

They had stone tools and weapons people in this day and age can barely reproduce, if reproduce at all.  They managed to somehow glue heavy stone shaped points to sticks to form spears or arrows. What??!! The expert in all this found trying to recreate any of that next to impossible! People are smarties who can figure out stuff even way back!!?? I adore that always very innocent surprise that modern day folks express over real old-timey folks being able to do anything, let alone do stuff in complicated, sophisticated ways. It speaks of comforting beliefs handed down about ancient folks that we’ve ingrained as ‘truth’. There’s, uh, a lesson there, I think. 

New information laid over the comforting notions, making for some uneasy shifts.

I also remember reading the Auel books, where she, using the information available to her at that time, wrote her Earth’s Children series, with Ayla being the actual Aryan-like central figure who was like an Albert Einstein amidst the ape-like creatures of habit that those like Ayla called…flatheads. Uh huh. Only she seemed able to make the connection that the Cave Bear sorts were…PEOPLE TOO. Good lordy! 

If you have not read the Clan of the Cave Bear or any of the books that followed, I don’t blame you. They can be tedious as all get out, with Ayla morphing from an interesting, very flawed figure into… peerless super-genuis superwoman doctor supremis who literally discovers everything. She even domesticates animals…as if people could not figure out otherwise that including animals in their lives would be of great benefit.  As if other people were not also trying to domesticate animals! She alone invented domesticated beasties! Horses and dogs, even a cave lion…ugh a bug.

Don’t even get me started on Jondalar!! 

Okay, I won’t get into my seething frustrations with that series. Auel’s attention to detail is fabulous. There ya go.

But I have coffee in my special cup. The stars in the sky, frost shimmering on the ground. Spring waits to pounce. Rituals. Everything is a ritual around us. Deep thoughts, I tell ya. They hit you over the head with a club.

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A closing shot of the Gremlin at rest.