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5:24 p.m. - Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2004
Much Ranting
There is a tavern in the town, in the town
And there my true love sits him down, sits him down,
And drinks his wine 'mid laughter gay and free,
And never, never thinks of me.

I HATE that song. I know, it's older than I am and it will be around and still remembered when I'm gone and long forgotten, but I still hate it.

I had been wondering why was I being haunted, pursued, hounded by that irritating song. Finally, I realized that it served as the tune for a new commercial jingle for some pain-relieving product — that one where the woman in stiletto heels is pushing a desk, and another woman is knocking down a wall with a sledgehammer.

Yet another reason to hate commercials. They turn consciousness into a torture chamber.

Oh, and why is every goddamn SUV commercial essentially the same? We see an SUV driving very, very fast in some wilderness setting. In some cases it arrives at some remote paradise where only an SUV, and only this one SUV, can go. How many times can you see this scenario repeated before you start banging your head against the wall? You can grab your remote and flip the channels and see the same commercial over and over — same commercial, different SUV.

The really irritating thing is that you know that in the real world, people who drive SUVs never drive them anyplace more interesting than their job, Chuck E. Cheese's or Wal-Mart.

Or how about the SUV-as-a-way-to-impress-your-kids variation on this theme? For example: the commercial where Dad drives his SUV filled with his kids and his kids' friends out to an empty, unpeopled desert. He says, "This is it," and the kids climb out, grumbling, wondering where they are and why. Then the cross-country race cars come plunging over the sand dune, the kids all leap to their feet cheering, and Dad is a hero. Wise Dad! Powerful Dad! Who couldn't love such a Dad?

It's a whole lot easier just to buy an SUV than to be wise and powerful in your own right, isn't it?


OK, that ends my rant for the moment. I have just one question: is it possible that there is some mood-altering substance in tomatoes? I have noticed a pattern over many years, that

every August I go insane. I become severely depressed, irritable and volatile. Every summer for many years I have grown tomatoes, which begin ripening early in August, so the intense insanity seems to coincide with my consumption of large amounts of tomatoes.

Of course, the insanity could be attributable to any one or more of numerous other factors: the heat and humidity; the exhausting physical labor that summer entails; the cumulative effect of hundreds of mosquito bites; consumption of large amounts of watermelon and/or cucumbers.

It doesn't really matter, does it? Nothing does. Life stinks. I'm going to kill myself. And wipe that goddamn smile off your face, you jerk.


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