El Paso – Franklin Mountain

El Paso is one of those few but not insignificant number of American cities that I’ve been to so much I feel like I’ve lived there when I actually haven’t. Work and fun travel will do that progressively over time. More than anything what drew me to El Paso was the people. I really miss working with those folks and their families a lot. I’ll probably never go there for work again, but whenever I find my way back to El Paso the people are always there.

Still, that doesn’t mean El Paso lacks for things to do on your own. In Franklin Mountain, El Paso has a hill that literally bisects the city, and gives it its name. It’s a good hike, and one that if done on a weekday has the always enjoyable trait of being one you can accomplish without seeing a single other human being, which always adds a nice poetic touch to the hike.

the always typical and delightful: I want to climb that.

I can’t remember what this small structure was, but I think it was a power company site back when such things were needed

east El Paso, it’s hard to tell in this shot, but this portion of the mountain has three or four feet of hiking room, with a very clear one way trip doom fall on either side of you, it was fun

climate theater – part 47

The best way to improve the climate is apparently to jet set the richest most important arrogant people on the planet into one place and get them to talk and produce nothing but bland platitudes for days. Make no mistake, lots of promises will be made, but nothing will be done.

All these countries will promise to be net zero by [insert any date here] and a bunch of corporations will produce squishy statements about how they’re committed to [insert any sanitized public relations talking point here] but it will just be hypocritical window dressing.

If they were honest, they would all scream and cry and then burn down the exhibit hall. Or better yet, not show up at all. Because the honest truth is there is no coherent plan to fight climate change. It’s all a pipe dream.

The global pandemic, the most catastrophic economic event in nearly a century, caused only a very small fraction of a dip in global emissions. Take a gander at this chart:

The economy of almost every country on the planet was detonated, hundreds of millions of people sent back into poverty, and life stopped for months on end due to lockdowns.  And that cut emissions only a fraction of what they’ve risen to in the last two decades.  So what’s it going to take to get emissions back down to year 2000 levels?  Well, if the pandemic is a guide, I guess the answer could only be to destroy the entire human race.

The way out of this mess is apparently to replace all coal, gas, and oil with wind and solar.  But these make up only a fraction of the overall power structure and it’d be 2189 before they could fully take over.  Which if you believe the projections by that point the planet will be on fire and visible as a glowing molten rock from Saturn.

Then you hear the estimates that wind turbines have to cover an area the size of India.  Because the planet has plenty of open space in its populated areas, right?  And the same nutcases who are calling for net zero are also bizarrely anti-nuclear, because clearly this net zero power source is evil, you know, if they can’t do math.

To me this is the height of unseriousness.  The planet needs nuclear power in order for the math to work, but Germany, Japan, and just about any green activist of consequence wants nuclear gone.  They might as well just admit they’re selling an idea worthy of a druid occult ritual where they promise, just promise you the blood of a deer will cure your cancer.  Which of course, it won’t.  Unless you’re a druid reincarnated from 345 BC, then it’d work, or so I’m told.

Even the Paris accords acknowledge that they only way humanity can keep temperatures below a rise of 2 degrees Celsius has to involve “negative emissions”. 

This is the idea of carbon capture and other such things that stop or even remove carbon from the atmosphere.  Without significant negative emissions, the math doesn’t work either and over 2 degrees Celsius happens.  And as of today, I think the total amount of carbon capture per year is less than what’s put into the atmosphere per day.

So then you get lunatic moonshot ideas of seeding the atmosphere with sun blocking chemicals, or throwing a giant sun shield between the Sun and the Earth.  This Bond villain lunacy couldn’t possibly backfire, honest.  I mean, we can trust the planet’s elites to not make mistakes, can’t we?

Hey to me the climate change argument is just noise.  Believe in climate change or not, because it doesn’t matter what you actually think.  You’re just going to have to adapt to the weather, regardless of what happens.

What does matter is the planet’s elites have only nonfunctional, delusional answers and plans which won’t work.  It’s complete theater.  Enjoy the ride, those who are driving are idiots.

As useful to the human race as a demolition derby event

meet your new Jeopardy host, Kal-Al-Dekbrah, Destroyer of Worlds

It’s become rather hard to keep track of just how many people are detonated in the media every day.  So, I for one don’t even try.  But I guess not one but both the new Jeopardy hosts have at one point in their life called another adult a jerk, so they must be executed in Times Square and can’t host the show.

I’m just gonna go ahead and state that Jeopardy should have died with Alex.  I used to watch this show with my Ma and Dad.  My Dad liked it.  But to me, there is literally less than zero point having the show continue without him.  Trebek WAS Jeopardy.  This show does not properly exist without him.  Everything else is just noise.

That being said, somebody’s gonna host this show, because $.  Since modern media / news / celebrities have a zero tolerance policy on any actual human behavior whatsoever, no human being will ever pass the vetting.  So we at TAP propose Kal-Al-Dekbrah, Destroyer of Worlds as the new host.  His qualifications:

1) Possesses most knowledge available in galaxy.  They can fire the scriptwriters.  HE writes the questions, live, on set.

2) Is so surly and dismissive that his dry demeanor will be treated as wise as he calmly asks questions and interacts with contestants.

3) Thinks social media is a clandestine tool to weaken humanity for the forthcoming bombardment, and thus has no black marks on his internet record.

4) Confirmed genocidal maniac who has burned planets.  But since he didn’t say anything about trans on Twitter, nobody will care.

5) Provides esoteric enjoyment during the contestant question session as he asks their opinion about drag coefficients on starships.

6) Ups the drama by requiring any contestant with a negative balance to pay the bill, in cash, on screen, as the credits roll.  Or else.

7) Lights a candle and chants a prayer for a few seconds at the beginning every show in honor of Trebek.

8) Will viciously chokeslam any haughty contestant mid-show (you KNOW the type I’m talking about) shattering their spine on the stage floor

9) Dispenses with the need of judges to adjudicate disputes, only HE judges. Objections result in chokeslams.

10) Antics will provide better ratings than any other [insert complete and total loser human here who is not Alex] new host.

it’s time for a return to bloodsports

This morning on the train a woman was absolutely out of her mind.  Likely under the influence of some mild expanding substances she was shouting nonsensical things to the train car in general.  Since the local train police are essentially nonexistent, this is not an uncommon occurrence.  Everyone ignored her.  However, what was uncommon was as she got off the train she got into another lady’s face and started yelling at a complete stranger, essentially threatening her life for no reason.

This other lady then proceeded to let the crazy lady have it, and basically shouted her down asking her in very kind, appropriate language fit for a kindergarten what her problem was and to get away from her.  Much to my surprise, this entire interaction greatly pleased the entire train car’s passengers.  It seemed to make them happy to see this altercation, made their commute more exciting.  Other complete strangers were talking about it with each other.

Why?  Well, morning commutes are boring as shit.  Plus, this crazy lady had been shouting for 20 minutes and so folks were probably pleased to see somebody hand her her ass.  But, I have a twisted mind and so my other thoughts were that folks were just happy to see some kind of non-violent altercation as pure entertainment.  It brought people together, complete strangers.

This is straight caveman shit.  This is the ape part of our brains that loves to see a good scrum.  Think evolution has solved us of this?  Wrong.  At times it seems the entire purpose of social media is to give people an outlet to express their rage at [insert anything here].  Instead of brawling with their neighbors in the market square over [insert anything here], they just output their rage on Twitter.

Not only is this unhealthy, it’s also weak.  It’s really, really easy to threaten somebody’s life over a political issue when you’re not in the same room with them.  It’s rather a different concept if you’re face to face.  Let’s take an example of this.

1) Political Cult Acolyte 1 says to Political Cult Acolyte 2 over Twitter, “Fuck you, you’re wrong, my opinion is right.  You deserve to die.  I’ll kill you and all those like you, fucker.”  A similar threat is returned.  Nothing actually happens.

2) Political Cult Acolyte 1 says the same thing to Political Cult Acolyte 2, only face to face.  Either the police are called, a fight ensues, or somebody is actually murdered.

If you ask me, (2) is more productive than (1).  (1) allows the rage to continue, let’s people live in their own narcissistic bubble, permits people to endlessly be total assholes without consequence, and in the end solves nothing.  Whereas with (2), the issue is resolved, one way or the other, immediately.

It’s time for a return to bloodsports.  The Coliseum is still standing, just slightly upgrade that venue and let’s get back to our roots.  The mandate is anytime somebody threatens somebody on the train, or on Twitter, it’s like a glove slap challenge.  If the other human doesn’t accept, they can be branded as a coward or not serious in their beliefs regarding [insert anything here].  If they accept the challenge: Coliseum.

This can be live broadcasting like the Olympics or like any number of post-apocalyptic B movie from 1987.  They don’t necessarily have to kill each other, just get the other opponent to submit.  So I’m not necessarily advocating tridents and nets.  Let them hit each other with plastic bats for all I care.  Eventually somebody will get tired of getting hit in the head and give up.  Or, we just let folks go wild and somebody can get viciously stabbed with a short sword.  Either way.

But, I guess the problem is this would instantly make these folks famous.  So folks would be picking fights on Twitter just so they could get into the Coliseum and then become #1 on Instagram.  Fuck, my idea sucks.  It solves nothing.

Hmm, how about instead of bloodsports, we adopt the ancient Mayan or Aztec custom of human sacrifice?  If two people threaten each other on the train or Twitter, they get tossed into a cenote, or have their heart ripped out on the steps of the Supreme Court?

failed train becomes graffiti

Near my place is a light commuter rail train bridge overpass under construction.  Construction’s been on hold for over a year because (shocker) the project is over budget and the government is fighting with various private companies over who pays the bill.  My bet is it takes five more years to finish this thing.  It’ll be a decade behind schedule and probably a few billion over budget.  Which seems to be how America builds things nowadays.

Anyways, since this very new and expensive bridge is essentially abandoned, people get to have a field day except for the nearby construction storage site.  That site is safe is because it’s surrounded by cameras and barbed wire.  But the bridge itself is essentially open, if you’re daring or dumb enough to climb out on the steel edges of the supporting beams.  The beams are about a person’s width wide, without a railing, and a drop of at least a 100 feet or so.  In other words, you can walk out there, but if you fall you’re done.

And wouldn’t you know it several crazy folks have done so, to spray paint graffiti on the side of the bridge.  The first guy did this months and months ago.  It was a crude word that was incomprehensible, I guess it was his art name?  I have no idea, I’m not exactly up on the graffiti scene / lingo.  This morning another artist / goon (depends on your viewpoint) put his or her tag on the bridge side next to the old word.  The new stuff was super elaborate.  It must have taken hours to spray that on there.

I draw the following conclusions:

1) Whoever did this had the mental fortitude / courage / guts of a person who in caveman times would have killed all his rivals and made ten surrounding villages his bitch.  It takes balls to stand out there with inches between life and death for hours, and to somehow spray a well composed coherent concept.

2) Like a lot of places in America, the crime rate in my local area has soared lately.  We had a carjacking the other day which is extremely rare.  This weekend the cops were back, just down the block from me.  Yesterday I had to shoo my dog along during the walk because she wanted to play with a man who made no attempt whatsoever to conceal he was dealing hard drugs.  Spray paint a bridge illegally?  No worries, the cops are nowhere to be found (for many, many reasons which we won’t get into today).

3) Despite his nighttime tactics, I’m sure the artist / goon (depends on your viewpoint) would have been visible to at least a few pedestrians and those driving in cars.  So either these folks just let him do it and didn’t care, or they called the cops and the cops didn’t show (see above).  But I guess if folks saw this and didn’t care, I’m okay with that.  Somebody spray painted a bridge, so what?  If government can’t be bothered to not completely & totally waste taxpayer money for a decade on a failed transit project why not let some dude have at it?

4) Will the most incompetent of governments take the time to paint over or remove the graffiti?  Well, like I said the one guy has had his stuff up there for months, so my guess is no.  At least not until construction resumes on the project, if it ever does.  So these dudes have their stuff just hanging out there on this steel bridge forever.

5) If I had spray painting skills, and the guts to do this, I’d spray paint the most random shit up there.  Something that would cause people near constant question marks in their heads for years.  I’d have like a woolly mammoth playing cards with a penguin, a Cossack, an elderly Incan lady, and a half full glass of water, all of them sitting on a table made of ice, next to a campfire fueled by discarded Chinese newspapers, whilst on the Moon.  It’d be great!  Losers would be searching for the deeper meaning of it for years, when there would none whatsoever.

all trees must pay, for the alter of work

A new person at work has decided that they’re going to manage everybody’s training records.  I suspect because they just got hired, nobody is telling them what to do, and they feel that have to do, like, something, anything?  Normally this wouldn’t matter to me, but now they’re after me on my training records like I work for them.  Normally this wouldn’t matter to me, but all our work training sucks and is a check in the block.

Plus, all this extra work, spreadsheets, training records, etc, is all paper printed off, signed, scanned whatever.  We go through a legendary amount of paper in this office.  It’s like it’s still 1947.  We buy paper by the pallet full.  All trees must pay, for the alter of work.  Bow down to it, or they get mad at you and put your name in red text on an excel spreadsheet.

There’s this theory going around, I think somebody wrote a book, on the era of white collar “bullshit” jobs.  Where folks think they (or actually) accomplish nothing of actual value.  They just keep the hamster wheel of their place of business moving along.  I’ve read a few articles lately about how all that’s a lie, and that much of this work actually matters, it’s just most people hate their jobs.

I would tend to agree with that, that most people don’t like their jobs.  But the idea that our super modern white collar world is not about 73% bullshit, is, well, not exactly, precisely correct.  On a given day I’d say about only 1/3 of what I do actually matters.  The rest is the hamster wheel that my boss, or his new training assistant, makes me do that has no value.

I should quit this bullshit gig and go take care of homeless puppies.  But then I’d have a bill pay problem, my dog’s kibble is expensive, beer doesn’t pay for itself.  I should quit and take a risk at value, I won’t, that’s the trap I guess.  We all got bills to pay and white collar work combined with dead trees means you don’t work in a cadmium mine 12 hours a day.

unsolicited morning cage fights are worth it

For about ten seconds as I walked to the train this morning I got treated to the joy of watching a sparrow duel some kind of bug.  They danced around the concrete as this bug (I couldn’t tell what kind) tried to get away from the sparrow.  The bug lost.

Then the sparrow flew away in a burst, likely to go hang out somewhere and eat in glory.  This will likely be the most enthralling thing I watch all month.

I had thought it’d have been great to get a video of this.  But it happened so fast.   And, as previously written about on this blog, sometimes the best memories are the ones where you don’t take a single photo or video.

vaccination without reward

All the vaccine holdouts in the Western world should go ahead and let their governments know they won’t be participating.  Then those countries can ship all the vaccines they’re holding to the rest of the planet who would kill for them.  Rather than have to do without vaccines entirely, or get jabbed by a Chinese or Russian vaccine that’s mostly made of cadmium, green tea, and old newspaper shreddings of Pravda.

But what’s with all these vaccine incentives?  Some States are giving out free beer, chances at a vacation, an alien tome that explains the meaning of life, lottery winnings, $43 equivalent in Roman Imperial gold, and so on.  How come I didn’t get any of this fancy shit?  I just showed up twice and they jabbed me like it was nothing.  Where’s my Golden Idol?

Incentives are for losers.  Fear is for winners.  Here are some ideas that’ll be sure to get people into the vaccine door.  We’ll call it:  The Arcturus Project Vaccination Without Reward Program (TAPVWRP).

Get vaccinated OR:

1) Home is entered into a lottery where the fire department chooses a house to burn down for training purposes

2) Beloved dog and/or cat is offered up as a new permanent pet to a child with cancer, if child expires, pet does not come home and instead goes to another cancer child

3) Fired from job and not allowed to apply for a new one until a cooling period expires, financial difficulties are irrelevant

4) Hooligans are hired to throw bricks through windows and at cars at random intervals

5) Are entered into an all-purpose death battle royale inside a dome while reality television watches like some kind of D grade novel

6) Whatever the greatest fear, it must be endured it; for example, if one hates spiders they gotta open up the front door via a hole in the wall filled with bugs ala Temple of Doom

7) The State deliberately infects them with the Fall 2021 strain of influenza

8) Are forced to sit down and listen as Christopher Walken reads the first five books of the Old Testament (no bathroom or food breaks)

9) Friends are informed via a written forged letter (with handwritten signature) that forged author is a closet cannibal and wants to eat their tasty, tangy flesh

10) Why did I do this list?  there is something wrong with me

to Office Space is a verb

I watched four of my employees this morning struggle mightily with the photocopier like it was cavemen learning about fire. They fought the machine for a half hour before they got it to work again. This copier is brand new, and it already is failing. It’s a Xerox, who has been making copiers since 1959 and things still don’t work.

You’d think if they’d been making the same kind of machine for over six decades they’d have figured this sort of thing out. Nope! Everybody around the planet is still struggling with the same flaws, failure, frustrations, and fury. It’s almost like they build these machines poorly on purpose. So you can pay them for maintenance or have to buy a new one all the time.

Everybody wants to Office Space their photocopier. It will always be so. Aliens don’t even need to blow up the planet to take over. They just need to give every family on Earth their own copier. After one month of dealing with failure, we’ll be begging the aliens to become our overlords. Just as long as they destroy all copiers.

not complying with electronic equipment environmental disposal / destruction laws is the dream of every white collar employee

Japan hosts sporting event, things happen

Five years later I can’t really say my overall opinion of the Olympics has changed much. This boondoggle probably made a whole bunch of Japanese construction guys super rich ala The Bad Sleep Well. Instead, they probably should have spent all the money fixing Fukushima but oh well. What’s a two week sporting event for supermen and superwomen when you can just go ahead and dump a billion gallons of radioactive water into the oceans. Silly oceans, what do they really do for humanity anyways?

What really is kind of crazy is how the IOC and the Japanese government are so hell bent on making this happen. To them the Olympics must happen. All the athletes are already there, rearing to go. Why? What makes these two weeks so special that they have to risk the health of the Japanese nation just so a bunch of creepily machine engineered humans can defeat the other creepily machine engineered humans by 0.15 seconds.

Well, the first answer is money. And the second answer is money. The third answer is politics (Japan sees cancellation as a political failure. Let’s not forget the IOC is a corrupt money pot like FIFA where dishonest men and women go work to take backhanders from politicians and corporations. Don’t think these politicians and businessmen are just gonna go ahead and let the Olympics get cancelled just because somebody’s health might be endangered.

I have this idea for an official Tokyo Olympics commercial. It’s of a random human buying a Coke with a Visa credit card and then getting into their Toyota with Bridgestone tires while wearing an Omega watch and they’re talking on their Samsung phone and so are so distracted as they exit the parking lot they run over a 78 year old Japanese woman on her way to get tested for covid. Then they quick cut to a whole line of rich dudes in suits licking their cigars with 10,000 Yen notes and the CEO of Omega looks directly into the camera and wryly states, “Stupid peasant, she should have gotten out of our way.”

Eh, why bother? I’ll probably just binge watch a BBC series on Netflix for two weeks. Or, like, read a book.

enjoy the spectacle, for one day, we shall die