high school reunion

David Wasserman - still a get refuser, still an abusive piece of shit.

Some of my readers (hahaha) might remember David Wasserman - https://marlowe1.livejournal.com/2295161.html for the long story. Short story is the fact that he tried to hire me to help write a statement against his ex-wife. Basically he divorced her over six years ago in Civil Court but he's still trying to control every aspect of her life, especially in regards to the children.

David Wasserman thinks that he should be in control of his wife. David Wasserman thinks that his children's special needs are negligible and that they should go to whatever dumbfuck yeshiva turned Dave Wasserman into such a charmer. Dave Wasserman whose email address is still an aol address - oceansuppliers@aol.com - thinks that David Wasserman should be able to just go over to his wife's house and demand that she give up the children without protest. David Wasserman even wants to make certain that his wife never says anything bad about him because David Wasserman - who may or may not work for a company called Ocean Suppliers - thinks that the only reason why people think badly of David Wasserman, get refusher, is the possibility that people are talking abotu David Wasserman.

David Wasserman doesn't realize that David Wasserman of oceansuppliers@aol.com is the only reason why people had David Wasserman. David Wasserman can fuck off. David Wasserman is a get refuser.

If you aren't familiar, this means that even though the civil divorce is over, David Wasserman can extort power or control over his wife because Orthodox Judaism has yet to decently deal with the fact that divorce can only happen when the man says it's over. So his ex-wife can either live in this halachic legal limbo or leave Judaism entirely. Or a beis din can annul the marriage but that doesn't seem like it's happening.

Meanwhile David Wasserman is out there probably dating. Probably chatting up women at the strip club. David Wasserman is definitely sucking cocaine off his molester's dick because David Wasserman loves his rebbe. David Wasserman of oceansuppliers@aol.com is probably telling everyone about his mean ex-wife and justifying his actions to all asundry.

David Wasserman thinks that he's the victim because like Donald Trump, every abuser likes to think that they are the victim. David Wasserman is an abusive prick.

In my last email to David Wasserman I wished cancer on him. And then I expressed a wish that he commit suicide. I'm told that both are very nasty things to do. So right now, I only wish Covid-19 on him. Since David Wasserman is the kind of arrogant prick that abuses his wife and uses a halachic loophole to keep her under his control for over six years, I want him to die as painfully as Herman Cain died.

But I want him to die within a few weeks instead of the many many years that cancer would take to kill him.

David Wasserman is a get refuser. David Wasserman is an abusive psycho. Fuck David Wasserman
high school reunion

Books read in 2021 # 8 - This is where Robert Kirkman got bored with The Walking Dead

8. The Walking Dead vol 31: The Rotton Core by Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard, etc. - Just saw a meme that asked "When did you stop with the Walking Dead?" and that does seem to be a universal experience. No show on television had so much potential and so much disappointment. I'm going to repeat what I probably said in 2019 which is that for me The Walking Dead is great as soon as Negan shows up and loses its charm as soon as Negan gets written out. I'm not sure if they are keeping him around in the show but I didn't see much of him. I have no clue where I stopped. I don't think that I even got to the Whisperers on the show.

But as far as the comic - same damn thing. Write out Negan because he really doesn't have much to do. He's had his redemption arc going from villain to anti-hero to useful leader to isolated after saving everyone from the whisperers. And then we get the final boss - Some woman who smiles too much.

So here we are, in the volume before the volume with issue 193 where Kirkman shocked everyone by just fucking ending the whole story. And it makes sense that it's ending here because the overarching plot is the rebuilding of society. So readers have followed Rick and the rest of the characters from isolated camps to a farm to a prison to a suburban community to a confederacy of different communities, strengthened by fighting the Saviors who were the both the main antagonists and the most advanced post-zombie social order. After the Whisperers who were an interesting side quest as people who decided to live among the zombies (I wonder where the comic would have gone if the whisperers turned out to be zombies that had recovered their faculties) we get an entire city full of people who held off the zombies and live life as if nothing has changed.

And this is where it feels rushed. Kirkman was definitely building towards this ending, but he seems to be bored with the comic. Michonne going back to her law career and reuniting with her daughter is interesting but mostly this is a repetition of the usual tropes. One member of the group really loves the new community that they just found. Another member is severely distrustful. Rick is somewhere in the middle but at the end he figures out that something is wrong. The whole social order is built on everyone getting the exact same roles they had before the zombies. The leader seems ok but there are clues that not all is well.

Also the cops beat people to death and no one is happy except for the survivors.

So this one ends with Darryl acting like he wants to overthrow everything and Rick shooting him. And then Rick feeling like he did the wrong thing.

I spent most of this one trying to remember if Rick advanced the Broken Window theory of law enforcement. And when he did it. It actually makes sense that Rick would buy into that horseshit but I forgot the context.

Regardless, I have the last collected Walking Dead from the library. I wonder if it will be as tedious as these last few post-Negan collections or if Kirkman will get a little more energy from knowing that he's ending it. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder

Books Read in 2021 # 7 - Golden Age Science Fiction - Introduction by Sturgeon

7. Out of Bounds by Judith Merril - When I wrote this article I was influenced by Cordwainer Smith being amazing and Judith Merril's Best Science Fiction Collection from 1960 which had more women writers than I expected. Some of them were considered mainstream now and most were forgotten and they were all better than what I expected out of Golden Age. So I had to buy a Judith Merril book.

And damn, did I ever beat the shit out of this book. I shouldn't have read it in the rain. Coincidentally Samuel Delaney started talking about her on his Facebook page. She was his friend in the village and he was even at a dinner where she sold a book almost by accident. I think that's how it goes.

Anyhow, this is a book of short stories and there aren't many so I'm just going to take it story by story

1. That Only a Mother - This one might be the earliest one in the collection. It's definitely one of those ones about fear of nuclear power. It also seems to have been written before the Twilight Zone since it's based around a twist ending. Basically it's about a woman who gives birth to a mutant but doesn't realize it. Her husband realizes that the baby is all snake like.

2. Peeping Tom - Tom is in the Korean War and decides to learn telepathy from the local wise man. This is one of those classic science fiction where it doesn't matter HOW one gets magic power, it's what the newly powerful one does with it. And Tom is horny so he figures out when to make a move on the women he's with. There's a moment when they decide to fuck him and if he doesn't capitalize on it they change their minds. Never let critics tell you that Philip Jose Farmer made science fiction horny.

Anyhow this story is also based on a twist ending. Tom marries the nurse and finds out that she's also telepathic.

3. The Lady was a Tramp - This one confused me. I think that the only woman on the spaceship is the whore. The POV character is repulsed by her, but he's also going to fuck her. It's a weird story. I really didn't figure it out.

4. Whoever You Are - This one was also confusing. But I think it was supposed to be about the confusion of trying to communicate with aliens. The story ends with an analogy of a woman throwing a note over a wall that says "I love you" but what does it mean? What does it mean to make contact with the aliens.

5. Connection Completed - Judith Merril was a romantic at heart, but the thing is I found this story to be the kind of story that I write. It's a story about two people who make a connection but it's about that connection, leaving it ambiguous. In this case, a man sees a woman that he dreams about in a restaurant. She sits down and they talk but it's awkward. It's only when she takes control and lets on that she has been dreaming about him that it comes together. So it's weird but sweet.

6. Dead Center - This is the most SCIENCE fiction because it's actually about science or engineering to be exact. Written years before the first moon landing, this is a story that shifts perspective between an astronaut, his wife and their son. It's a slow moving tragedy that masterfully balances out the narrative. It's also got an ending that makes no sense as the son ends up too close to the launch pad and dies. That's the bit that works on an emotional thematic level but not on a logical one since security would stop it.

7. Death Cannot Wither - This one is more a fantasy ghost story. It's interesting for the gender politics. A woman marries a man in order to make him a project. Once he's dead she goes into her own business but when she returns to the estate she finds his ghost. He wants to be let go but he's the main reason why she has value so she holds onto it. Finally she gets pregnant with his ghost baby. It's the ghost baby that lets her say goodbye even as she goes to the water where he's buried and gives up the ghost baby to the ghost husband.

So these are horny fascinating stories that are great for what they say about relationships in both the 1960s and now. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder
high school reunion

Youtube personalities - some notes

Contrapoints and Lindsay Ellis are great. They make long ass videos about social justice issues with some film criticism thrown in and I can watch them from beginning to end without pause. Except for the Game of Thrones one. I get it. Everyone (but me) hates how Game of Thrones ended. I don't need Lindsay Ellis explaining it in the context of Robert Moses. However, I can't really stay subscribed to Storied, Ellis' PBS show because even though Ellis is still ok in small doses, she's not nearly as entertaining. Those videos are too slick and polished.

Also she followed up a video on Stephen King (fairly insightful) with a video on Anne Rice (FUCK YOU).

And I know that this is because she's friends with Maven of the Eventide - whose name I should know. Hell, I was on a panel with her at Convergence. And I like Maven. Hell, she even mentioned my book on her show. But as much as I like Maven as a person, I find her youtube channel rather annoying for two major reasons. First, she's way too enamored with Anne Rice. It's a vampire channel so that should be expected. I would argue that it's worse because of all the vampire media in the world, she had to focus on fucking Anne Rice. Woman only wrote one decent book and two kind of ok books in her life. It's almost as bad as the channel Comics Explained where he doesn't explain comics so much as gives recaps of old stories. Actually the equivalent would be a channel on Comic Books that PRIMARILY talks about the X-Men, the 90s run.

The second reason is that damn voice she uses. She talks normal in real life. In the videos she uses Sexy Baby trying to sound Spooky voice.

Moving on to other former Channel Awesome producers, there's Folding Ideas. At one point I liked Folding Ideas. Actually most of these entries are things I once liked. Folding Ideas rarely comes up in the algorithm anymore but when he does it's always a fucking miserable time. Granted, the last time I watched him he was doing a voiceover concerning the movie Contagion with the main picture being him on a couch.

But the thing is that they are always like that. He's always looking just fucking miserable in front of a white screen. Sometimes he's drinking and I don't think it's one of those affected "oh look at me, I'm doing the fun drinking schtick". No it's that total alcoholic composing a suicide note in his head drinking. The one time he seemed ok was when he did a post-movie response to THe Book of Henry where he just jabbered about all the WTF moments in that movie. Then he went and did a serious video on the movie. And it was fucking brutal.

Seriously, insights about how that one scene in Rent is confusing because it seems to make Roger the Bad Guy for not wanting to do heroin are so not worth the effort of watching Folding Ideas being miserable.

Patrick H Williams is like Folding Ideas without the didactic bullshit. The one issue with Patrick is the fact that he's too in love with the skits. I think that he is sad because he was never in Channel Awesome so he didn't have to do those fucking skits that you sometimes see in Channel Awesome producers if you go back far enough.

Speaking of annoying, Musical Hell finally made me realize why I hate the channel. It's basically CinemaSins but for musicals. That isn't just the way that the narrator goes "Sin 1: the Opening Number" but there's a lack of insight into the musicals she's talking about. She complained about a Canon movie "Mack the Knife" (Three Penny Opera adaptation on the cheap) starting with a version of the song that isn't peppy like Bobby Darin, as if she doesn't know that the fucking song is supposed to be grim and nasty because it's Kurt Weil. For the most part, the rest of her criticisms are often just "well that's weird" or "well ok then" as if that's all she needs to say.

I like Kurt Smallwood because he refuses to do sponsorships in the normal youtube way. In fact, he mocks the hell out of the usual sponsors, including Audible and SurfShark. I appreciate that a great deal. I like other channels, but I'm really not enamored with these youtube content creators like Dominic Noble or Ryan Hollinger stopping to do a 1950s television type sponsorship.

Especially bothered with the fact that Ryan Hollinger keeps taking money from "Manscaping". I come to the channel to see a Scottish dude talk about the themes of horror movies. I don't want him to turn around and tell me to shave my balls.

There are others but those are the ones I'm thinking about at the moment.

Of course, there are others. This fucking Covid-19 Pandemic has stuck us all inside watching television for an entire year now. I think we all have about 30 more youtube channels on our subscription list than before (and at least a dozen that we took off). Hell, those React channels have become the only way to come close to hanging out with friends and watching shows. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder

Books read in 2021 # 6 - Murder at Kent State

6. Kent State by Derf Backderf - It's 1:30 in the morning. That "short nap" plan backfired in a big way. Sugar is running around like a crazy thing and keeps jumping on the couch and knocking things over. Oskar is staying out of it but Felix is antagonizing Sugar. Which is probably what Sugar deserves. It's the middle of February and this is only the sixth book I've read (but by the rules of this little game I only count books I started reading in 2021. I'm about 400 pages into The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire and when I finish I won't review it for 2021 because I started it in 2020).

Somewhere in between the 1990s when he was putting out weekly comic strips for weekly papers like City Pages and the Village Voice (I don't know if he was in either weekly but those were the kinds of places that published him) and now, Derf has become a major historian blending personal perspective with major events. My Friend Dahmer has the same general hook as Ann Rule's The Stranger Besides Me but whereas Ann Rule's relationship with Ted Bundy was "hey I knew this guy and also I'm a true crime writer so my opening chapter will be about how I knew him but the rest will be about his crimes" Derf paints an entire picture of high school in the 1970s (early 80s?) with all the maladjusted bullying and shitty social groups. By the end, the question changes from "how could we have missed that something was wrong" to the wonders of how many other psychopaths seem perfectly normal in the high school system (the school shootings have sadly made the question even more relevant).

This graphic novel also feels relevant for all the horrible reasons. The instability of 2021 bubbling over into a fucking coup attempt is not new. If anything the 1960s and early 70s were way more unstable. I feel like an idiot for growing up wishing that I had been in that time period instead of the comfortable neo-conservatism of Reagan.

I'm glad I'm not getting paid for reviews these days because I'm really wasting a lot of time when I just want to say that this book is fucking brilliant. Through dozens of interviews, Derf paints a picture of Kent State and everyone involved. The governor pushing a "get tough on hippies" and acting like sending in the National Guard is some dick measuring contest, the completely clueless school president and various students including the four that were murdered. Everyone saw it as some game until it wasn't.

The National Guard didn't murder four people in a vacuum. The tensions were high. There were riots. The propaganda against the weathermen and the SDS was at a high point. By the time the National Guard was at the campus, they were tired and angry. Before the protests they were outright stabbing students and throwing tear gas at them. There were also FBI informants all over the place.

Besides the amazing reporting the artwork is amazing. Derf has an amazing style that seems blocky at first but really brings out the pathos of the characters. It's a brilliant work by a brilliant cartoonist.

Damnit. I always tend to slack when reviewing books I like. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder
Spinning Tardis

War & Peace vs Babylon 5

I was going to write a post about how there was a Facebook discussion about how you shouldn't be embarrassed to be reading romance books or horror books or any silly genre book. Read your Fifty Shades of Gray or your Jesus Baby Buttplug proudly. The thing is that even though I should be embarrassed about some books that I've read in retrospect like Piers Anthony the only two books that made me self-conscious were War & Peace and Infinite Jest.

In both cases they are GREAT BOOKS. With all that baggage. And the thing is that I really liked them. And I recommended them. But every time I recommended them I felt like I might as well have been saying "Hi I'm a totally pretentious git who reads BIGASS BOOKS that you don't even think of reading."

Actually Infinite Jest bored me with the tennis scenes. But I loved the drug treatment material.

But War & Peace had one VERY big thesis and that was GREAT MEN theory is total bullshit. Tolstoy argues repeatedly that Napoleon blundered his way into Russia. He was fighting a war and that was fine. But then he kept winning that war until holy fuck he's burning down Moscow. Then what the fuck is he supposed to do? He doesn't know. Tolstoy is basically taking the same set of circumstances and events and personality and arguing that everyone claiming that Napoleon was a great big man doing great big manly things is full of shit. Napoleon was lucky until he was utterly fucked.

And other things that I won't write for a student paper. If I want to get paid.

But the exciting thing about reading this is that for years I've been inundated with the GREAT MAN theory of history. I even read one of those Victorian writers who exemplifies Victorian writing and is therefore utterly full of shit. Thomas Carlyle - I had to look him up.

But obviously if GREAT MAN was a Victorian era idea I wouldn't care about it. But every tv show was based on showrunners running things and every history book has to hit on the personalities of the greats. I guess it's easier to write a biography of Woodrow Wilson rather than discuss all the people who supported that shitty president and all the resisters (also stop quoting Theodore Roosevelt out of context. Yes, he wrote against newspapers being prosecuted for criticizing the president but he only cared about the jingoist newspapers gung ho about pushing Americans into the War. He was more than happy to see all the Anarchists and Socialists in jail) but it gets old.

And damnit, it made me stop loving Babylon 5. Perhaps that's a good thing. I was obsessed. It's like suddenly all the problems I had with Star Trek episodic format (even as it kept promising major changes) were answered. The story and the characters were great. The dialogue was shit but oh well.

Anyhow Babylon 5 was the most auteur of auteur shows since almost EVERY episode was written by J. Michael Straczynski and the Lurker's Guide was the first time I saw a television show discussed that extensively with Straczynski's input on every episode. Forget about waiting for the commentary track on the DVD. Just read the website obsessively (lamest science fiction panel was about the upcoming season 5 of B5 because everyone on that panel was just getting their information from the same website that every fan was already reading).

So JMS was such a dictator that he wouldn't even ALLOW other writers to write his shows. Maybe there was a writer's room but after that Peter David episode in season 2 there were no other writers on the credits until season 5 when JMS let Neil Gaiman have an episode (and then wrote an episode where he gave Harlan Ellison story credit).

So naturally JMS was all about the Great Man. Sheridan was the GREAT MAN after Sinclair. They were both different types of GREAT MEN. Michael O'Hara was a stiffer actor than Bruce Boxleiter so most of the writing had everyone else treating him like he was the greatest leader ever. Like there was an entire history with him that the audience doesn't see (not as clumsy as Lucas setting up a non-friendship between Obi Wan and Anakin in the prequels). Sheridan had the personality so JMS was comfortable writing him making the big speeches and tricking all the delegates into forming an alliance.

But the Deconstruction of Falling Stars became the JMS mission statement. I loved this episode so much when I first saw it. It was that episode that JMS wrote because the show had been renewed and he needed an episode since he wasn't going to use the finale (although wouldn't that have been a hoot if he used the finale where everyone gathered 20 years later and Sheridan went off to either die or become star stuff or whatever that ending meant? And THEN do the final season with the Telepaths and Minbari going isolationists) and I loved the experimental nature.

I can't help it. I love experimental stuff. Hell, I'm a little embarrassed that my last published story was written as an academic introduction to a fictional book of poetry written by the girlfriend of a psychopath. Even i'm thinking "damn I'm crawling up my own ass wit this one" but I still think it's really fun.

But Deconstruction of Falling Stars had several functions. First it served to place the whole Babylon 5 saga into a wider context. A hundred years into the future, 500 years into the future and a thousand years into the future and the perspectives always change. JMS was very cranky about the final section being compared to A Canticle for Leibowitz but he was the one who wrote about monks putting together history out of fragments. What did he expect? Of course, by this point JMS was cranky about every accusation of making a reference to another show or book.

The second aspect was how it served to foreshadow Season 5. Here's a video footage of Garibaldi as a hostage (carrying on the weird tradition of teasing Garibaldi dying). Here's a discussion of Sheridan's son. What is going to happen? (you have to read the books for that). But most of the foreshadowing bits were in the Academic Symposium which is JMS at his worst. It's just him mocking academics and then having Delenn come in and say that Sheridan was a GOOOOOOOD MAAAAAN. So now they are all ashamed of saying that Sheridan was only part of a lot of historical forces and not the GREAT MAN that JMS wrote. The 500 years is when Earth is fascist and lying about the characters and the 1000 years is the hagiography. So those extremes are not terribly useful for foreshadowing but they were fun.

I had no problem with this show for so long. But then JMS on the commentary track was pushing the GREAT MAN hard. And on the Lurker's Guide he even takes it as an insult that "some people EVEN criticized George Washington"

More than the terrible dialogue or the dumb jokes or the Scott Adams cameo, what makes me less eager to watch Babylon 5 (even as everyone is now finding it) is the fact that JMS loved this theory of history that said that history is driven by GREAT MEN. It's just such puerile bullshit that we should have moved away from years ago. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder

Joss Whedon and the Great Man/Auteur Meshuggas

I'm enjoying the Joss Whedon bashing. I think I enjoy it as only a once hardcore fan can enjoy it. I have had this blog (well livejournal - but I consider it this blog since livejournal is now a husk of its former self - just like I count my years going to Convergence to almost a decade before the first CONvergence because MiniCon was Convergence before Convergence) for so long that I know you can find Joss Whedon kneejerk defenses. I think the theory that everything that is great in his shows is despite him is attractive but he did get it going. He did write a great deal of it. He did manage the shows. He set the tone.

For better or worse.

In a Convergence panel discussion or several Convergence panel discussions, the subject of Whedon came up. I purposefully avoided the topic of Whedon's character because at that point all we had was his wife and her article came down to his feminism is fake because he fucked a lot of women behind her back. Some were co-workers and there was a power differential.[1][2] This was before Ray Fischer and Charisma Carpenter just broke the floodgates today.

I was mostly concerned with his artistic output. Progressive for his time, but damn that is more a condemnation of the 1990s than praise. Knowing that he did a gag where a male character falls on the main woman's breasts TWICE is bad enough. Finding out that he had a fucking tempter tantrum and spent a day bullying Gal Gadot is so much worse.

But the various crimes of Joss Whedon productions tend to get thrown at Whedon exclusively. Whedon can't imagine a happy relationship. Whedon can't write a pregnancy into a show and prefers to fire an actress after giving her a semi-incest story with Floppy Haired Pete Campbell. Joss Whedon makes an entire show about a future empire that is half-Chinese and half-American and then includes NO ASIAN ACTORS WITH SPEAKING PARTS!!!!! (and puts Jewish characters in the show and the movie in order to depict them as sniveling little wimps. Because THAT stereotype isn't played out).

I think I realized that I was losing my affection for Whedon when the Singing Commentary track of Dr. Horrible's Sing-A-Long Blog included a song about how They Don't Have Roles for Asians. I think that was the title. It's a funny song, but it's a fucking lampshade on the fact that WHEDON doesn't have roles for Asian actors (I don't remember if Dollhouse had happened yet). The Asian actress singing it might have been the producer as well. I don't remember. But I do remember that she has three lines as an obsessed fan girl. And that's the only thing I've seen her in. She could have had the Felicia Day part. Hell, she could have been any of the white women on Firefly or even the men. She could have been Jane (and Firefly wouldn't have the taint of Adam Baldwin). But nope. She's three lines in a fun little musical and an entire song about how she can't get work.

So I guess I'm still framing it as Joss Whedon as the auteur and blaming him for the faults. I really need to pay more attention to whose writing these shows. Whedon was just the face of it. Doctor Who has an even bigger problem with writers and show runners since the showrunner has been allowed to impose his personality at least since the Gothic Tom Baker era (Hindcliff?) and it got even more pronounced with the Davis revival. With Davis and Moffat there's a huge personality working and the show demands it. But with Chibnall the showrunner is STILL supposed to impose his personality on the series and Chibnall has to be in charge. But Chibnall is a mediocre journeyman writer whose writing swings between mostly ok to utter shit (Broadchurch was unintentionally funny and that's the only enjoyment I got out of it. Really probably not a good thing when your child murder show gets laughs and "oh fucking hell, knock it off" responses).

So Chibnall REALLY should step back. He doesn't have the talent or energy to RUN the show. He SHOULD be hiring new writers instead of the same 5-6 BBC wonks that get hired for all of these fucking shows. He should be looking for a diversity of writers. He's not.

But we are so used to these showrunner as master of the tone. Maybe we should look for shows that actually have a lot of writers and not look to the showrunner. Yet, I'm still thinking of Dan Harmon who was the only guy to respond to the metoo with a genuine apology and has actually sought out more women for the writer's room. Granted, he should have had them in the writer's room from the beginning and there are missteps. Getting stuck casting Susan Sarandon as a character specifically written to be Asian was a problem. Sarandon wanted to be on the show (to get a job for her son - nepotism is so hardcore in Hollywood) and obviously they weren't going to say no. But Season 3 of Rick & Morty had ONLY ONE part for a woman outside the family?

Yet that's still better than the gender politics of the Gazorpozorp episode from season 1. Now that episode had a lot to love. Summer and Rick going on adventures together. Morty trying to raise a psychotic alien that he had because of a sex doll. The Footloose Angry Dance. The ending where Morty jr is told to channel his psychotic rage into writing by the Marmaduke cartoonist (they were trying to get anyone else for that joke but the other non-descript cartoons like Family Circus are drawn and written by cartoonists in states that allow for lawsuits. Lawsuits that should have been taken care of by Falwell v Hustler and later Snyder v Phelps)[3]

But the episode created a gender stratified society solely to tell sexist jokes. Some were funny despite themselves but others were just cringe. Rick & Morty got very much better after it stopped just being the Harmon and Roiland show. And I don't know the identities of the writers.

I guess the auteur theory is hard to get away from. Even when we know it's bullshit it's still convenient. But I'm happy that Harmon recruited a more diverse writer's room.

More on this in the next post which was supposed to be the first post but damn I've been missing Facebook.

1. For the same reason I was not terribly eager to "cancel" Scott Lynch when his ex-lover rage tweeted about their relationship. The ex used language such as "baby writers" and "grooming" when they were in their 20s when they met Scott. The story came down to Scott wanted to start something even though he's married. At first everyone seemed ok with it but jealousy and anger got in the way. The breaking point was when they told Scott about a publication or milestone and Scott told his wife - thus breaking the trust they put in Scott because they didn't want Scott to tell his wife. The more they tried to make Scott and Elizabeth sound like monsters, the more they sounded petty. I've written similar angry things about my ex-girlfriends. Sometimes warranted and sometimes not. Often I had a lot of feelings to sort out.[2]

2. That bullshit macho brother posturing of "if you hurt her, we'll kill you" seems to come from a good place but it's also highly confusing and unrealistic. What is the definition of "hurt"? Outright abuse needs way more than a murder threat. I knew a woman who left her husband and he tried to tell everyone in her life that she was an evil slut because she cheated on him (mostly as a way to break away from his abuse) in order to isolate her and poison the well. Her family was supportive and were more than happy to welcome her home regardless. Had he been more abusive, they would have called the police. Killing him would not be feasible. But the statement is so vague that it sounds like anything will get you murdered. "Hurt" is not a very specific verb. You get into a relationship and you start hurting each other. You forget anniversaries. You are late for a date. You tell your girlfriend that you didn't miss her when she was gone for a week but you wanted to miss her. You just want to be honest (ok I did that. I didn't even realize how much I was in love with her until she casually dated someone else when she was away for the summer. She was sane and normal and didn't get into drama and that did NOT feel right.) You roll your eyes in public. These things all hurt. And the more in love you are the more they hurt.

So a family member going "if you hurt her, they won't be able to find the body" is not just some macho posturing bullshit it's also fucking psychotic.

3. Yes, I have my favorite Supreme Court cases. I've been living in a Jewish community five train stops away from Columbia Law. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder
Teddy Bear

Regular Updates

I am still in Facebook jail for mocking white people - or specifically using the phrase "blue eyed white devils" in regards to Game of Thrones. The algorithm did it. The algorithm is a fucking Nazi. Facebook is bullshit and yet I'm addicted. As soon as Tuesday comes I will check every hour to make sure I know when I can go back.

Gambit is dead. My other cats are leaving each other alone. Oskar is still shitting in the kitchen. Felix is still taking some grisly shits and not covering them up properly. I apologize for that update but he just did it and I can smell that. Damnit Felix.

I waited for the call for the Fair Hearing only to learn that the New York Burial Fund that denied my claim had sent me a packet ONE WEEK AGO and expected me to have it by now. I actually do have it. It's in my mailbox but I didn't check the mail. I asked for an adjournment. I don't know if I'm going to succeed. They didn't get the paperwork from the Veterans Administration or Isabella Geriatric. I'm going to have to figure out ways to say that it's still ok to pay me. With Isabella I contacted a lawyer for a possible lawsuit and they are stonewalling me for medical records. With the VA, I don't know. It's not my fault that they are not sending in the fucking paperwork.

Besides I didn't even use the VA. The VA would have paid for burial expenses and put Mom in a military cemetery (just like grandmother and grandfather are buried together in Fort Snelling because grandfather Jake was in WWII). Mom wanted to be cremated. So no money from the VA.

Speaking of which I still have Mom's ashes. I really don't know where to put them. I just brought out Gambit and put him in a park next to a tree (only Socrates got a burial because my friend worked at the local church at the time). But Mom was only in New York for the last few months and for a couple weeks in September 2004 when she drove me here (and then flew back). She had a good time then. She really liked TIme's Square. Should I spread Mom's ashes in Times Square.

Also Isabella may say that Mom owes them money because she was supposed to give them her entire Social Security and Pension. She never signed that paperwork. And for fuck's sake I had to use the money to keep her from starving to death with that shitty food. They got about $40,000 a month from the state for her. They didn't need her $1000/month. Anyhow Isabella - the place that killed my mom - may very well stop this. But they are also just not sending in the forms.

So it's my fucking responsibility? Fuck this.

I had the same issue back in September when I tried to apply for rent relief. Not the rent relief that paid HALF of my monthly rent (I'm still five months behind because Cuomo is a master of the empty gesture) but a rent relief that would be a loan. I wanted it to pay off my rent, but I didn't want it as a loan because like other loans it would have just added to my debt.

But I did TRY to get all the forms in. Only the fuckers in the department decided that they needed a SIGNED NOTE from my roommate stating how much he paid a month. My roommate who doesn't fucking talk to me is supposed to sign a note. I got everything else but a fucking note. This is worse than when the people at the humane society hear that I have a roommate and decide that despite years of taking care of cats and having cats in my apartment that they want me to BRING MY ROOMMATE WITH ME to the animal shelter to give over their approval. That was back when I actually had a friendly roommate who might have been convinced to do it. But it was still idiotic.

So I probably won't get money from the state for my mom. I got money from GOFundMe.

Speaking of which here's the gofundme for Gambit's vet bill - https://www.gofundme.com/help-pay-veterinary-bill-for-gambit

I don't think I'm going to get much. I'll find out next week when I can post on Facebook but generally people prefer to help living cats. This is basically me spending $1200 to find out that my cat has cancer a day before he died.

I probably should go to another vet. When Patches died, I only had to pay $700 to find out that she was dying of FLV.

Pretty nothing days. I still have to finish a short story.

I am also trying to help a guy out who is editing an anthology that interests me (I also submitted) and he's trying to get diversity but looking in the wrong places. He thinks that most horror writers are white dudes and hasn't been proactive in testing that assumption. He's also not accepting reprints which is increasingly becoming a pet peeve. If you are editing an anthology and NOT paying pro-rates (or even semi-pro) then fucking accept reprints. I got a few dozen stories that would fit but I published them already. I have friends who would have great stories for the anthologies but they were published already.

Seriously, pro-rate writers are not going to submit to a token payment anthology under the best of conditions. And without accepting reprints there's no way to get them.

My pro-rate sales are few so I don't consider myself a pro-rate writer. I submitted a story because it's very niche - 1918 anarchist werewolves with Yiddish idioms throughout - but had the anthology not been almost made for the story I would have avoided it.

Anyhow, the 1986 anthology is still there.

Last thing, my freezer is filled up. I went to the grocery store and used almost all of my SNAP benefits. They came today. Keyfood is fucking evil in its markups.

Oh yeah, I also have been having too much fun with Dogecoin. Since you can day trade the shit out of that volatile preposterous thing I've been selling it high and buying it low but it looks like it might be crashing finally. I mean a month ago it was less than a penny and then it shot up. It's now going between 6.5 cents and 8 cents a coin. Last week when I started buying these things they were 4 cents a coin.

There's a very really chance that I'm going to lose as it just crashes back to that .0003 a share. But I've never had more than $50 in it. So it sucks but I can consider it an expensive lesson.

Ok. That's it. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder
high school reunion

Gambit Died

The vet called me and told me there was nothing they could do. So I went to get him. I didn't want him to die in the hospital. He was always a fearful cat and I wanted him to die at home. I worried that if I kept him another night at the hospital he would die there. So I took him home and held him as he cried. Took most of the day. He really couldn't stand up. I didn't use the pills they gave me.

He also peed on me again.

Anyhow, I've been making sure my cats die at home since Toby. With Toby I should have brought him to the vet earlier but later cats like Patches and Honey died when I was holding them. At least give them that comfort.

The one part that is always a problem is figuring out when they die. I usually try to error on the side of caution but that means I'm holding a dead cat for at least a half hour before rigor mortis sets in.

The last cat that died at home was Wilhemina and I probably should have had her euthanized. It's just she was so crippled that she reminded me of Mom. With Gambit, he wasn't showing any signs last week. THis came on pretty fast. I almost think that I shouldn't have brought him to the vet but there was always a chance that it was just an illness like with Felix.

I have a gofundme for the $1200 bill. I will post the link in a couple days. I also need to post it on Facebook but I can't post on Facebook until next Tuesday.

Anyhow I will probably talk more about Gambit on the Gofundme. He was a sweet cat. He was afraid of humans because he had been abused as a kitten but he liked other cats. In fact, I don't really know what the dynamic of the house is going to be without him. Oskar and Felix are a pairing and Sugar is in his own space. Maybe they will just avoid each other from now on. Felix seems ok with Sugar but I don't know if they will ever actually interact.

The shitty part is that Gambit was only 10. He was the youngest cat. I thought that he'd be the last one and that I would have to replace the other three in order to make sure he has company. Oskar and Felix are 12 and Sugar is 13. Sugar seems the youngest though.

But you can never tell with cats.

Gambit was a sweet cat. It took him years to warm up to me and even then the abuse was still clear as he was easily startled and ran away a lot. I'll miss him. But I miss all my cats. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder

Another Cat is probably dying Gambit

I got Gambit shortly before Socrates died. They had maybe a month to get to know each other before Socrates started getting listless over Pesach. When I brought Socrates to the ASPCA they did an x-ray and tried to talk me into euthanizing Socrates. I took him home instead and let him die in my arms. I don't regret that. The next cat that died was Wilhemina and I feel like maybe I should have taken her to the vet to die. But anyhow I got Gambit when he was about a year old? A little older? I don't remember. I should just check to see when Socrates died. I tend to use this blog to either review books or talk about dying cats.

Anyhow Gambit was an abused cat and he hid from me. In fact, I ended up with four cats because the next cat I got after Socrates also hid, only she hid under the radiator and scratched the hell out of me. So I replaced the most affectionate cat I've ever had with two cats that probably didn't hate me, but certainly didn't like me. So Oskar and Felix came next.

Anyhow it took me years to get Gambit to get used to me enough to tolerate when I petted him. Often I would pet him when I fed him. He would also play with the other cats. That's why I always figured that as long as I had Gambit I would have to have more than one cat. If for some reason Sugar (Mom's cat) becomes the only cat I will probably let him be the only cat for awhile. He is more of a people cat.

I may write a fuller post about Gambit when I know what is what but I took him to the vet. It's the same vet that I took Felix to a couple years ago. I think I'm being superstitious since Felix was fine afterwards. Basically Felix only needed antibiotics for a few days.

Gambit was listless. Not so much listless. The thing about Gambit is that he likes to hide. He hides in boxes. He hides behind bookcases. He likes to be left alone unless he's chasing the other cats. He was playing with Sugar only last week. Friday most likely. So the only way I knew that something was wrong was the fact that he wasn't whining at 9 in the morning or 7 in the evening. Those are the times when he really wants to be fed and he's very unhappy with me delaying it. Usually I get to pet him when he comes up to me in the morning. But he would rather eat.

Then it's the ritual of feeding where I open up one can and three cats run to bowl. Usually Gambit eats out of the can. Then I open a second can (usually Fancy Feast because that's Sugar's favorite brand) and then all three cats go to the next cat food. Sometimes Oskar stays with the original food. Often Sugar goes back to the original food.

So the last two days I opened up a lot of cans hoping that Gambit would eat it. I'd even lock the other cats away from it. But Gambit didn't eat. Gambit would drink and piss, but he wasn't eating. At least I don't think he was eating. Like I said, Gambit is very shy. But I don't think he was eating.

I brought him to the vet today. The vet did a lot of the same things he did the first time, like noting that my cat was dehydrated. Gambit was scared. I held him most of the time. The vet also came in to talk about UTI but then changed his mind when he saw that Gambit had peed on me. So it's all guesswork.

I think that the bad review of this place was probably something I should have paid attention to. They almost charged me $2000 for tests including an ultrasound.

So what I know.

Gambit has yellow in his gums and eyes so Jaundice. Gambit hasn't been eating. Gambit is pissing and he's dehydrated.

But also they found something on the X-Ray that could be a tumor.

Only it's weird because he just got sick a week ago at most. With a tumor he'd be sick for awhile.

Anyhow, it's most likely liver disease. But it could be cancer. Either way, I'm not having him euthanized. Like with Socrates, I'd prefer to have him die where he's comfortable.

But I'm worried about my cat. He kind of smooths things over between Oskar and Sugar. He's also the youngest cat at 10 years old.

I guess I'll knokw more tomorrow. In the meantime I have a paper to write. I better get it done tonight. It's due tomorrow and I could push it off tomorrow, but I might be even more sad tomorrow. http://www.patreon.com/timlieder