Rant: Not Rant-Like

True story!

From:         kibo@world.std.com (James "Kibo" Parry)
Subject:      RANT: NOT RANT-LIKE
Newsgroups:   alt.religion.kibology, rec.arts.sf.written,
              alt.books.carl-sagan, alt.books.george-orwell
Followup-To:  alt.religion.kibology
Organization: welcome datacomp
Date:         Wed, 15 Oct 1997 06:21:46 GMT
X-Battlestar-Galactica-Date: 1023 centons, 97 microns, .01 woxwox
X-Newsreader: McTV. It's a Web browser and a "delicious" burger!

Today I was at the mall.


No, wait, come back!  I hit the wrong button again!

Today I was at the mall.  I looked at the bozos and weenies and people with
withered heads hanging around Lechmere's 40% off bankruptcy sale for about
three hours, and then I decided they were all double bozos and triple weenies.
Then I looked at the $4 Mickey Mouse gloves in the mutant re-incarnation of
Spencer Gifts as one of those stores that's only open one month of the year,
then I tried to buy a headphone miniplug-to-bigplug adapter at Radio Shack,
but they'd moved across the corridor into an identical space, and they didn't
have it and wouldn't have even if they hadn't moved because Radio Shack does
not sell components any more.  And I picked up one of my PhotoCDs (the other
two are apparently still at the lab) at Ritz Camera and discovered they had
made prints from it despite the fact that I made the guy write "PHOTOCD ONLY,
_NO_PRINTS_" on the work order, so he gave me the CD and told me to keep my
claim ticket and when I come back next week to get the other two CDs to give
him all three strips so that they'll fish out the other envelope with just
the bill for the first PhotoCD after he calculates the price he should charge
me, but I think I already lost that claim ticket a few times.  Anyway, to make
a long story short,


No!  No!  Not the end!  Come back here!

To make a long story short, I remembered I needed the Oxford Dictionary Of
New Words from which they removed "Yuppie" and added you-know-who, because
I knew it was in store shelves because I saw someone leafing through it on
a store shelf on CNN Headline News, which is to news what Reader's Digest is
to erotica.  So I went in and eventually found the "Reference" section.

There weren't any dictionaries tucked away in that little quadrant (immediately
behind "Gay, Bi, And Lesbian Interest") and then I discovered that there was
a separate "Dictionaries & Thesauri" section.  Surprisingly, they didn't
have "(this means books of words)" after "Thesauruses".  Anyway, they didn't
have the Oxford Dictionary Of New Words, or any OED supplements, or the
full OED, or the Compact OED.  They just had some paperback with some title
like "The Oxfred(TM) Brand Generic Desk Dictionary, NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE"
as well as a whole bunch of "Skippy Webster's Ununabridged Dict."

But they did have "Catflexing", which I also saw advertised, I mean
described in a serious news story (because there's only so much news you can
pack into half an hour) on CNN Headline News.  It's a book about how you
can lose weight bench-pressing your cat.  It has pictures showing you how
to hold your cat over your head, and pick the cat up and put the cat down.
It does not explain (a) if you're stupid enough to be unable to figure out
how to use your cat as a barbell, how come you can read? and (b) have they
tried this with any cats of the normal "I DON'T LIKE THIS, PUT ME DOWN
AND THEN I'LL STOP RIPPING OFF YOUR SKIN!" sort or just those weird zombie-
like ones that just droop when you swing them around your head in circles?

On my way out of that crappy Waldenbooks, or B. Dalton (I forget which the
mall has because they all have the identical plum-colored molded plastic
signs which say "STEVE MARTINI!" and "DEAN KOONTZ!" and "V. C. ANDREWS!",
except for the K-Mart in Schenectady which had a "SIC FICTION" section
where I used to buy Harlan Ellison anthologies) I saw that they had a large
"end-cap" display labelled something like "READING FOR THE MILLENNIUM".
It had lots of retardo books on how Nostradamus predicted we'd have a 
nukular war with the Soviet Union by 1999, the year in which the 21st century
starts, etc.  Also "The Physics of Star Trek".  The only non-retardo book
on the rack was a single tattered copy of Carl Sagan's "The Demon-Haunted
World", his book-length rant about how even morons should be kept from
reading all the other books on the shelf.  It was frayed, dog-eared, generally
baseballized in an Eliot Rosewater sort of way, suggesting that countless
thousands of people had picked it up, riffled through it, and immediately
dropped it, disappointed that there were no cool pictures of the scary
demons that this super-awesome horror novel was about.  (They should've made
it an Ace Double with the scarier "Broca's Brain".)

They also had a big display in the front window of the book of "Robert
Heinlein's Starship Troopers The Motion Picture", but I don't think they
adapted the movie right because there's the big rant in the middle about
how everyone should have sex with teenage girls all the time and speak
and foil all those evil capitalists who go around with top hats and big bags
of cash by refusing to capitulate to your evil government which wants you
to believe that two and two make five.

So I gave up on buying books and instead went back to Lechmere for another
few hours to watch all the idiots hanging around in Lechmere.  I had a lot of
fun looking at the huge pool of VHS movies that nobody wanted even at the
Apocalypse Sale prices: stuff like "Ernest Goes To Camp", "Ernest Goes To
Sports Camp", "Ernest Goes To Space Camp", "Ernest Goes To Fat Camp", and
"Ernest Flexes His Cat".

What is the point of all this essaying and hand-wringing?  It's to show
you folks what REAL SERIOUSNESS IS LIKE.  And it's the last time you'll
see real seriousness, because we can no longer say "Yuppie", because the
word has been VAPORIZED BY BIG BROTHER!  So stop complaining about those
nameless people who listen to Miami Sound Machine in their BMWs and go
back to reading your wacky Carl Sagan horror novels.

                                                -- K.
                                                THE END!
                                                No, really, I mean it!
                                                Go home!
                                                THE END!
                                                Waah, Mommy, my friends came
                                                over and they won't leave!


James "Kibo" Parry
last revised Mar. 12, '98

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