Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


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Like my brownhouse:
   across the mighty Hudson fjord
Wednesday, August 23 2006
This evening Gretchen, Ray, and I went across the mighty Hudson fjord to Rhinebeck to see Little Miss Sunshine at Upstate Films. I knew the film had something to do with a pre-teen beauty queen, but I hadn't known expected it to be so deliciously subversive. While, as a comic roadtrip movie, it was more rich in quirky details than it was in surprises, as a dark-horse-goes-to-a-competition movie it broke all the conventions in a way that makes me want to both drop out of high school debate and quit working for WDST all over again. It wasn't a complex movie and the scenes seemed a bit forced at times, but as fun summer movies go, it definitely worked.
Both Gretchen and I were surprised and appalled by the juvenile beauty pageant spectacle, at least as depicted at the end of Little Miss Sunshine. The little girls with their thick makeup, absent any indication of scale, looked like perversely large-headed adult women putting all they could muster of their sexuality on display. Creepy though it was, it shown a klieg light on one of the elephants in the room of our society. The fact that pædophilia is so passionately and uniformly reviled must indicate that it a massive and widespread secret indulgence. I myself don't usually find six year old girls particularly sexy, but I wish I could have fucked JonBenet Ramsey back when she was still alive.
After the movie we had the idea of maybe hitting one of the local restaurants for freedom fries. But our vaguely-racist usual haunt was closed and the college-friendly café next door was so overpriced we decided to try our luck on the friendlier, more Mid-Western side of the Hudson. The thing about Rhinebeck is that you go there, get what you need from it, and get out as quickly as possible. This whole "lingering to take in the shop windows of stores that have been closed for hours" thing doesn't work with me at all, particularly in Rhinebeck.
We ended up at Frank's Place, a bar near the Enterprise Drive exit on US 209 in Ulster Township, a little more than halfway home from Rhinebeck. Frank's is a new bar, and on this particular night Frank was out in the parking lot watering his plants and he had to unlock the bar to let us in. We were his only customers. His bar was a freshly-painted place rich in navy memorabilia and the yellow luster of wood detailing. As we sipped our drinks, Frank (a short man with a wide face) regaled us with tales of his 26 years in the navy, his multi-decade life in the local school system (he was a principal for many years) and his recent gigs in the Ulster County Legislature and as the Supervisor for the Town of Ulster. Once the topic reached "teaching" Ray and Gretchen engaged him in a prolonged conversation, one for which I had no contributions.

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