August 10th, 2005

Critique of Pure Tolerance

My favorite take-no-prisoners columnist, SFGate's Mark Morford, replies to those who complain that he is an "intolerant" liberal:
Let's refashion the old, stagnant definition of tolerance and make it less about merely enduring, merely putting up with the existence of other narrow-minded beliefs no matter how devastating and embarrassing they obviously are to the nation's health.

Rather, let's flip that sucker over and baste it with raw goat butter and sear it on the open flames of divine justice and bliss and intellectual fire and white-hot orgasm and burn it new.

Let us take the rather flaccid word tolerance and pump it full of Ecstasy and medical marijuana and sake and real divine love and fancy book learnin', turn it on its head and spin it like a bottle and reclaim it from the neocon Right and turn it into, say, giddy outrage. Or radical reconsideration. Or ecstatic rebellion. Or wet conscious electric pointed awareness. Is this not a better way?

Let us explode those dead meanings, correct the mistaken neocon dictionary. Let us hurl that dying and mealy and abused term back at their powerful and often bigoted scowl. Here is your weak, ineffectual tolerance. We cannot swallow it anymore. In fact, we are choking on it.
I'm more than a little surprised that, even in the liberal San Francisco Bay Area, Morford is not pressured to be more moderate. Or maybe he is, but refuses. Either way, as chefxh -- have a merry trip to Portland, friend -- and others have also pointed out, we are lucky to have one voice on the Left that really understands how to fight right-wing polemics with fire.
  • Current Music
    Bean playing Harry Potter Legos

Disturbing Realizations

I just ate a banana from a bunch I purchased at a horrible non-union store that I was forced to shop at the other day. And it was good. In fact, whenever I get the cheap, non-organic bananas from that sort of place, they taste much better to me than the organic kind I can buy at Wild Oats. Why is that? I've had a related experience with eggs. We only buy the free-range sort, most of which come from the Petaluma area in Sonoma County, where jewish Anarchists -- including Winona Rider's ancestors, I believe -- started farming chickens a century ago. And they taste better than the industrial sort that you buy cheap at the supermarket. But their shells are ridiculously thin. They don't even crack in a satisfying manner. It's like slamming your fist into safety glass. So the pursuit of hard-boiled eggs is a sortee in which you are bound to lose several members of the troop to premature splitting. And Easter eggs? Don't even bother trying to make the sort that dry out from the inside out and last for eternity. If it's the shell you're after, better go for the bad sort. Otherwise you'll risk fearing that the chickens who laid your eggs were subjected to high levels of DDT.
  • Current Music
    The Classical - The Fall - Hex Enduction Hour

Passing On El Paso

Kim was at the movies during the bedtime ritual yesterday, which meant that I got to tell a Roger Rabbit story. It went awry, oddly, when Obi Wan Kenobi, who operates under the delusion that he's -- ::speaking in an exaggerated Scottish accent:: -- actually "Ewan McGregor," praised Kim's "cute button nose." Skylar is apparently not in favor of her mother being "cute" or "adorable." But before that unfortunate incident, the highlight of the story was Obi Wan wandering around El Paso, claiming that it was preferable to Glasgow -- Annakin begged to differ -- and explaining that he now likes his haggis "southwestern style." Even then, though, Bean wasn't buying it. "Why do they have to stop in El Paso anyway, dad. When I hear 'El Paso' I think of a boring place that serves salad and beer." It looks like my long-nurtured dream of visiting the home of the Sun Bowl is even more unlikely to be a family affair than it used to be. Anyone want to join me on a roadtrip there? I'll even let you hunt for haggis.
  • Current Music
    a memory of Bob Mould doing an early live version of "High Fidelity"


I have an overwhelming urge to have fried chicken all of a sudden. Not the KFC shit. Real fried chicken. Like my aunt used to make. But since she died in 1980, I'm going to have to find a substitute. I lit upon Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles, which native Angelenos have talked about reverently, but there's obviously no Roscoe's here. So what do I do? Where do I go? If you have any insight on fried chicken-selling emporia here or in the Phoenix area or maybe even El Paso, please let me know. I'm desperate.