May 8, 2006

Random Stuff

“Cute” Sneezers. I don’t like to use the word “hate” and try to save it for especially worthy targets: the devil, slave traders, child abusers, soccer moms. Well this week I’ve added a new group to the list of people I hate: “cute” sneezers. What are “cute” sneezers, you ask? They’re people (usually women) who try to make their sneezes sound cute. See, a sneeze is a reaction in your nose caused by snot—and it’s not supposed to sound cute. Achew! That’s how a sneeze is supposed to sound. Let me do that again. Achew! Well, many people sneeze like this: acheeeewwww!, the cheeewww rising from alto to soprano. Believing it’s cute, such people try to hold the cheewww as long as possible, sometimes getting as far as cheeeeeeewwww! Now I’ve been told by some that they’re not faking it, that this is really how they sneeze. Baloney! Nobody sneezes like that. Let me again demonstrate the proper sneeze: achew! If you’re not sneezing like that, then you’re trying to get attention, and I’m sick of it.

Politics. I haven’t been following politics lately and, know what, life has been a lot better. On the one hand, I feel guilty for shirking my civic duty to stay informed. But, on the other hand, not only have I been happier, but I’ve been a lot less angry and more easy to get along with. Why is it so difficult for me to follow current events without becoming a monster?

The Ineluctable Charles Dickens. The first time I read a Dickens’ book, The Old Curiosity Shop, I was quite disappointed. It was just so melodramatic. But I wasn’t ready to give up on the guy, so a couple years later I read Great Expectations. But again I was disappointed. This time my complaint was that it was too long-winded, way too long-winded. So I resolved that I’d never read Dickens again. Life had been fine before Dickens and it’d certainly be fine after him. But then a strange thing started to happen: he started to grow on me. Lately I’ve been busy reading other books, but Dickens’ stories and characters keep invading my mind. I’ll be brushing my teeth and suddenly start marveling at the main plot twist in Great Expectations. Or I’ll be helping a customer at work and be reminded of Joe or Dick Swiveller. Any writer that can effect you like this must be all right. So I’ve officially added Bleak House to my list of must-reads. Yes, the journey with Charles can at times be tough, but the destination seems to be worth it.

Politics. Okay, I lied, I’ve been following politics a little. (But just a little.) So let me speak my mind about this whole immigration controversy. Liberals make me sick. (Yes, Republicans are destroying civilization, but the Democrats aren’t even trying to stop them.) Sojourners, for example, argues against a House bill that would punish “anyone who aids undocumented immigrants, even in providing basic services.” Now, I think Sojourners is right to oppose the House bill, but why don’t they say anything against illegal immigration? Let’s review possible views one can take regarding the issue: no legal or illegal immigration, both legal and illegal immigration, legal but not illegal immigration. I favor the third view: let ’em in, but only if they do so legally. But for the life of me I can’t understand those who don’t address the problems that come with illegal immigration. A disproportionately high number of these illegals join street gangs; many of them take advantage of social services even though they’re not paying taxes. Moreover, allowing illegals to stay here isn’t fair; it’s an insult to those who have played by the rules and worked to become citizens. And lastly, allowing illegals to continue to come here sends the wrong message, telling the lawbreakers and their children that they need not play by the rules.

Quote of the Day: Here’s what a friend said to me when I asked if she liked Charles Dickens. “I hate Charles Dickens! James Joyce was verbose because he had something to say. Dickens was verbose because he was getting paid by the word.”

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