Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dee-Doh, Heather, and I at the Winter Formal

Strictly speaking, this did not happen at a prom, so I can't put it there; but it's one of those war stories from the wild side of life.

My friend Dee-Doh, with whom we have a long-term Platonic relationship and fishing partnership, told Heather and I of his dilemma: he had pledged at a fraternity at LSU that was one of the more socially promient ones, and he was perceived by many of the active members as 'the pledge most likely to wash out." This saddened us, as Dee-Doh was a real good guy but had, shall we say, some strong nerd tendencies. (Girls that don't appreciate nerds just don't know where it's at, ya know . . . .) Anyway, Dee-Doh was a good guy if you take the trouble to know him. He occasionally trouble shoots our computers, by the way.

The occasion that he had his strongest fear regarding was the fraternity's Winter Formal. Now this was a first-class affair, and all members were to show up with as spectacular a date as possible, dress in a suit or other conventional clothing, and really put on the ol' dog, if you know what I mean. To boot it was to consign oneself to outward bound track status: getting the twin black balls and eternal banishment from the halls of sophistication and influence. (Pardon my irony.)

The problem is, he was a lowly LSU freshman, and had a prob in getting someone to go with him. (He did not present a formidable appearance.) What to do?

Well, fortunately, this occasion was in New Orleans. That made things possible, despite our curfews. We both volunteered to go with him: decked out or tarted up or however you might call it. Ahh, we went the route: borrowing our older sisters' most daring fashions (with technical augmentation), drop-dead shoes, done-up hair, as sophisticated at our 17-year-old selves could pull it off. Let me put it this way, both of us tried to leave our houses with Dee-Doh before parental scrutiny happened to compel us to moderation. Actually, Mom understood the situation and employed her makeup and costume skills to further the farce. I went as his exotic French girlfriend, using my Cajun French to a limited degree to seem real.

She did say, "Don't let Maw-Maw see you looking like that!"

And, of course, the first thing not to do is to call him "Dee-Doh."

The moment of our entrance at the House was memorable. Each of us, on either side of Dee-Doh, clinging to his arm like he was a movie star. Heather was truly spectacular: a lite Acadian version of Laetitia Casta, sure to turn heads. I went along as the spare. Furthermore, we hung on him consistently for the evening, gazing fondly at him with cow eyes and sighed. His frat brothers didn't know what to make of us! Or him, for that matter! They had no idea that the three of us were cosmically pulling their legs!

The word got around, so we heard, that Dee-Doh had two girl friends from New Orleans and they habitually partied together. The word was out that they were sophisticated heiresses who attend Loyola or Eurotrash sophisticates, or who-knows-what. It was kinda nice to be one of those 'mystery ladies.' In fact we had not yet walked across the h.s. stage and were thus not yet, in today's terminology, 'rising college freshmen.'

That kind of amazes me. Peoples' perceptions change with time; in this case, in our favors. Imagine us pulling this off.

By the way, Dee-Doh was eventually initiated as an active, with no black balls.

And, apparently months later, he had no problems with the blue variety, either.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


In getting oriented to living in North Carolina, I did my readings about my new home: its flora and fauna, its history, its culture, and so on. It was all very informative. In a book on the humor of North Carolina, I found this intriguing passage:

William Byrd II in his book "History of the Dividing Line," described North Carolinians as being extremely lazy:

"Surely there is no place in the World where the Inhabitants live with less Labour than in N Carolina. It approaches nearer to the Description of Lubberland than any other, by the great felicity of the Climate, the easiness of raising Provisions, and the Slothfulness of the People. Indian Corn is of so great increase, that a little Pains will Subsist a very large Family with Bread, and then they may have meat without any pains at all, by the Help of the Low Grounds, and the great Variety of Mast that grows on the High-land. The Men, for their Parts, just like the Indians, impose all the Work upon the poor Women. They make their Wives rise out of their Beds early in the Morning, at the same time that they lye and Snore, till the Sun has run one third of his course, and disperst all the unwholesome Damps. Then, after Stretching and Yawning for half an Hour, they light their Pipes, and, under the Protection of a cloud of Smoak, venture out into the open Air; tho', if it happens to be never so little cold, they quickly return Shivering into the Chimney corner. When the weather is mild, they stand leaning with both their arms upon the corn-field fence, and gravely consider whether they had best go and take a Small Heat at the Hough: but generally find reasons to put it off till another time. Thus they loiter away their Lives, like Solomon's Sluggard, with their Arms across, and at the Winding up of the Year Scarcely have Bread to Eat. To speak the Truth, tis a thorough Aversion to Labor that makes People file off to N Carolina, where Plenty and a Warm Sun confirm them in their Disposition to Laziness for their whole Lives." -- William Byrd II

This amazed me. Were they really lazy, or was it a trait ascribed to them by some jealous outsider? Some of the locals view Virginians as often full of themselves; and it's hard to see William Byrd II as the jealous type. A sexual predator, perhaps, if you read his autobiography. No, I won't go into details about this guy . . . . But as to the allegedly laziness? I saw no present-day evidence for this. And, since laziness is partly due to genetics and the gene pool is not that different now as compared to then, I think that the Tarheels Byrd saw were normal in industriousness. And I can personally attest to the early morning traffic numbers: those North Carolinians were not late-risers. So why the calumny? My take on it is that the Tarheels trounced the Cavaliers or the Hokies in basketball! . . . . Yes, there's always a simple explanation for things.

[My approximation to UNC Blue. color used for this entry.]

Saturday, November 20, 2010

2010 Is the Year of the Tiger

According to the Chinese Zodiac, most of this year 2010 is the Year of a Golden Tiger.  The Year of the Tiger began on February 14, 2010 and will end on February 2, 2011.

The Tiger is a sign of courage. Let us rejoice, be happy, and enjoy the full gusto of living.  Be kind to others, and be patient with both yourself and others.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Some Psychology Slang

Binet (or WISC) jockey -- A psychometrician who primarily administers tests of general ability, AKA intelligence tests.

bra-size IQs -- Levels of general ability (intelligence) that are way below average; literally, IQ scores between 32 and 40, the typical range of bra sizes excluding cup size.
FLK -- This stands for 'funny-looking kid;' someone who has facial characteristics that suggest retardation.

LOBNH -- This is an acronym standing for "Lights On, But Nobody Home." Used by some medical personnel to refer to mentally challenged persons.

PITA syndrome -- This refers to a person consistently being a pain in the ass to other people. This term is occasionally used by psychologists to refer to a pattern of being consistently annoying or unpleasant.

room-temp IQs -- A slang term used by psychology majors to refer to those levels of cognitive ability that are borderline, but not quite low enough to be considered mentally retarded. Specifically, this refers to those in the 70-80 range.

Friday, November 12, 2010

A Real Classy Logo

I read in the Scottish Sun that there is a school for Scottish guys called Pick Up Artists Training; a class allegedly in seduction techniques.  Now I think that guys should be motivated by more than simply getting a girl into bed, but learning to open doors to a new relationship.  Let's face it: the sex is a draw.  (I'll admit trying my best to look at least reasonably presentable; and, hopefully, discreetly sexy.)  And some guys are kind of deficient in the interpersonal relationships skills, so they might profit from learning skills such as how to smile, use proper body language, fashion and voice tonality before trying these in more natural settings.

But here's the school's logo:

Really classy.  Why do I think that social skills are not heavily emphasized?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Did MSNBC Have a Short-Term Attack of Journalistic Integrity?

I suppose you may have read about l'affaire Olbermann by now.  The story is that political pundit and attack dog Keith Olbermann was outed as having contributed to three Democratic political candidates, much against MSNBC's rules, by the way.  This garnered him an indefinite suspension by MSNBC boss Phill Griffith.

Well, der uberboss had a change of heart.  Olbermann's suspension was reduced to three days, and that charmer will return to television tomorrow.  Hmmm . . . . this is kind of like being suspended for cutting classes; I garnered one of similar length for the same reason.

But at least he didn't get the standard one-day suspension for having too short a skirt, like in my high school.  No one really wants to look at Olbermann's legs!

Back to MSNBC and their rules.  Apparently they had a short-lived attack of journalistic integrity, about like FoxNews and CNN get from time to time.  But any good internist will tell you that if you take two aspirins and get some bed rest, it will get better.

When I was in high school, I learned that there was one set of rules for the football players and cheerleaders, and another set for everyone else.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Lingerie Color and Politics

While eating my Rice Krispies, and being thoroughly annoyed by their snapping, crackling, and popping, I was watching television. Just a typical Monday morning activity. And actually paying attention to the ads while doing so. Bad moment in time.

One ad convinced me that the Politicization of Darned Near Everything has gone even further than I had suspected. An enterprising lingerie manufacturer is now advertising Politically Relevant Lingerie. Here's a report from a fashion expert on television:

"Are you fully committed to your principles? Let your lingerie speak for you! We feature our bra and panty sets in various colors and styles, depending on your specific philosophy or party affiliation. Now you can be totally unequivocal, even if you are the only one that knows about it. If you are truly liberal and oriented towards progress, then you should select our Knee-Jerk Liberal Blue intimate apparel. If you avow conservatism, then Hidebound Doctrinaire Conservative Red bras and panties are your logical choice for foundation garments. Persons who advocate environmental causes might opt for Tree-Hugger Green undies, although a nice jungle camouflage might do on those more informal occasions. Anarchists should, of course, adopt the Radical Black set as their choice. Neutral White is for the ininvolved, or for those who deem partisanism to be suspect. White allows them to as uncommited as they so desire, even on election day!

Of course, the baby blue, pink, and pastel green styles may be opted instead by those who are merely tenative in their commitments. Floral or bamboo would serve the eccentrically-oriented fashionistas. Mauve is for the nonconformists, since it has some aspects of redness and blueness, but not enough to please either political party.

You might wonder about the implications of the Traditional Tacky red with black filigree lace styles so favored by overly actively imaginative boyfriends and husbands. The rare anarchistic conservative might wear these with panache; however, these will be automatically approved for exchange into a more color-appropriate style for those inappropriately color matched. Also, these insensitive males should have their consciousness raised as to the hidden messages behind color choice.

Naturally, in the true spirit of multipartisanism, each of the possibilities of styling will be available in all of the colors. It is expected though, that high-riding blue thongs will be best sellers in honor of the whaling industry of New England.

It is anticipated that the selection of these fashions statements will peak every four years. Otherwise, the perennial best-selling NASCAR lingerie is expected to dominate interest at other times.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Opposite Sex Friends or Platonic Friends

We have a terminological gap in referring to relationships.  An example is the notion of boyfriend (or girlfriend).  Basically, as we use this term in the USA, it refers to a person of the opposite sex in which there is a romantic component.  But what about those relationships in which two people happen to be of opposite sexes, but there is mutually no romantic relationship?

Some people refer to a "friend date" -- one in which a man and a woman (or bay and girl) go out together and do date-like activities, but in which there is no romantic or sexual component.  This would be something that you might do with your opposite sex friend.

It's interesting that there is the slang expression "friend with benefits" to refer to a friend that one engages in sex with; and even "friend with minor benefits'; i.e. -- non-coital sex.  But there is nothing to refer to a relationship that is strictly platonic.

Maybe Platonic friends?

Monday, November 1, 2010

eViL pOp TaRt Strips to Vote

I confess -- after reticence on the matter -- I transgressed in my new-found zeal to be a fully-functioning citizen of this Republic.  To make the matter worse, the choices were abysmal!  Whoever you voted for made you wonder if it was a matter for confession or special education classes.  Anyway, without going into the particulars of my politics, let me tell my story.

I was supporting one of the morons running for office; and to declare to all and sundry (like a typical 19-year-old), I wore a t-shirt proclaiming that fact.  Okay, I saw drumming up support for my candidate as being a bonus in addition to a free shirt that could be worn in the future for ironic reasons.

However, I did not reckon with the Louisiana state election law forbidding electioneering.

It was toward the end of Election Day, and the polls were due to close.  There was still a lot of people lined up; but no problem: they could vote as long as they joined the line before closing.  One of the poll observers representing the opposed candidate to mine challenged my presence as long as a wore the offending t-shirt, and declared that I would have to leave and come back not electioneering.

The reality was this: It was five minutes before the poll was due to close, and my home was ten minutes' away.  If I went home and changed, I could not get back in before closing.  I pleaded, but no luck.

In desperation,  I removed my tee, and voted minimally decent in my bra!

The remaining twenty minutes' worth of as-yet-to-vote citizens cheered at my commitment to suffrage, and many of them bumped knuckles with me while I tried to have my arms cover myself as demurely as I could.  I decided that I should dial my feistiness a few notches in the future.