Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Hope

My mom likes to send me my horoscope from time to time. She does not believe in them per say, but she does usually find them inspirational and, once in a while, oddly poignant. These last two days have fallen into the “oddly poignant” category and has me thinking I many need to rethink my feelings on the whole "horoscope thing".

Yesterday’s Horoscope was this:

Writing may be one of your main focuses for today, dear Gemini. You have a lot of information to impart to anyone who might be interested in what you have to say. You could try your hand at a magazine article or perhaps fiction or poetry. However, even if all you write at this time is a letter to your grandmother, what you say will undoubtedly be bright, gripping, and certainly very interesting. Go to it!

Today, she sent me this:

There is no question about it, dear Gemini: Change is in the air! Perhaps you cannot feel it because you have allowed yourself to become bogged down in despair. You can't help but wonder if you will ever attain your goals. Well, take heart. The times they are a changing, as Bob Dylan says. You just need to wait a bit longer. In the end, it doesn't matter how long it took to get there, only that you arrived!

Considering my mood these last few weeks and my latest posts, this is down right freaky. Is this just coinscidence? A broken clock showing it can still be right twice a day? A Halloween trick? I don't know for certain, but I think I am supposed to think long and hard about this. Perhaps my dreams are not quite dead just yet.

Happy Halloween

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Playing with Letters

This is not a real poem per say in that I know it is weak. I am playing with a concept right now and this is my first attempt. See, what I am going for is for the horizontal words to express a feeling that the vertical, capitol letters also conveys.

Feeling everything that you’re trying to say
Understand it less and less every single day
Caring is something you left far behind
Kindness, for you, just ain’t all that kind
You never relent in your endless assault
Only to say that it isn’t your fault
Understanding is something you sadly just lack
And never quite understand why I don’t want you back
So please just shut up and wander away
Stop with the notes and just leave here today
How long do you think you can keep this shit up?
Obviously you beleive I can't get enough
Leave me in peace so I can regain
Everything that I lost in exchange for fame

It is a celebrity looking at their fans. Sorry for the curse words =D

Monday, October 29, 2007

Oh Where, Oh Where Could Your Lemming Have Gone? Oh Where, Oh Where Can He Be?

I am alive and living, but still slightly down so no update yet. I have some things I am working through right now and trying to get straight in my head. I never deal with things well so I am also suffering from physical illness right now due to my mental state. I puked in the parking lot at work today for example, but never fear for me. These things are normal and, for me at least, according to clockwork.

My last mental breakdown was when I was 27, so these things seem to be on a nine year plan. It drove me to leave the Pizza business and move to Miami and get into the family business (not the mob; watch less movies). Now, at 36, I feel the need to figure out my next step and that is what is ailing me.

I should be back to form very soon (I hope). Expect a real update tomorrow. Until then, enjoy your sanity. It can leave you at any time.

PS- It seems, based on the poll results, that we like our horror movies funny with many walking dead things. This means only one thing really: our "Lemming Halloween Film of 2007" is Shaun of the Dead. Great choice. Please join me on Halloween in watching this great movie. Showing starts at 8pm EST.

Full Results
Slasher 0 (0%)

Black Comedy 2 (33%)

Torture Porn 0 (0%)

Redneck Inbred Cannibal 0 (0%)

Ghost 0 (0%)

Devil/ Possession 1 (16%)

Zombie 2 (33%)

True Crime Stories 0 (0%)

Don't Watch Any 1 (16%)

Any Horror is Great 0 (0%)

Votes so far: 6

So happy nobody picked "Torture Porn." You passed my test.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Is There a Bad Moon on the Rise?

I am in a mentally rough patch right now. I am full of doubts and unanswerable questions that are haunting and/ or teasing me daily. I am trying to update here, but I just can’t find that “wit” right now. I am deep in a depression that I know will pass soon, but right now it is really getting in the way of my blogging. Everything I write is total crap.

Is there a full moon coming up or something? This usually happens around those times and this feeling is usually my first warning that one is on its way. I suppose I will just wait it out and update once it is gone. It is hitting me harder than usual though. I hope there is a full moon coming. I need my mojo.

Friday, October 19, 2007

30 Days of Friday

We are in the last few moments of my “working Friday” and just a few moments away from my “relaxing Friday.” Yes, there is a relaxing aspect to my Fridays. I realize that over the last year I have only spoken of the rough nasty patches that Friday treats me to, but that is only because “It’s Friday” is usually written while at work. Today I am writing it while in my last 20 minutes of work so I am already at home in my head.

I am not going to take too much of your time today simply because I am lazy and, as I already said, am already on my couch, feet up, PJ’s on, remote in hand, and flipping wondering why nothing is ever on.

This weekend is part two of my “Annual Halloween Horror Fest” with this weekend being the “Attack of the Zombies.” Time to rush out and rent/ buy some of those classic films of the undead variety and join me in watching society crumble under the weight of the deceased. This weekend’s selections are: Dawn of the Dead; Bubba Ho-Tep; Evil Dead 2 (a yearly tradition), Return of the Living Dead part 2, and probably the two parts of the 28 (Days, Weeks) Later series if time allows. I hope you join in for at least one.

Next weekend will be “Cheesy 80’s Slasher Flicks” so please give any suggestions for your favs. Sorry I forgot to inform you about “Inbred Redneck Cannibal Mutant” weekend, but it was not very good. Outside of the original “Texas Chainsaw Massacre”and “House of 1000 Corpses” there really is a serious lacking of quality Redneck horror films. The Hills Have Eyes sucked so bad I did not even bother watching part two. Returned them both the same night I rented them actually.

So, whose game? Ready to get scared?

Happy Friday to all and to all a good weekend.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Relapse of Sorts

Is today a failure or another aspect of a success? That is a question for the ages that will never be answered fully, nor will any proposed answer ever really make everyone feel a sense of closure, but it is the question for today because today I failed and succeeded and I am not sure how to label the day in the context of my life’s story. You see, today I lit a cigarette, but did not smoke it. Did I fail because I wanted, found, and lit a cigarette or is today a success because I held a lit cigarette in my hand yet did not smoke it? I guess this is another one of those “perspective” things.

I am not having a Smurfy day today. It is not exactly 100% un-Smurfy, but there is a definite lack of Smurfyness going on; not a total saturation of that old Smurfy-vibe. Techs seem to think today is Friday based on how lethargic they are to work and a lack of communication among co-workers can cause a very contagious strain of stress to spread rather easily. It soon overcame my nerves and sent me into the default “I really need a cigarette” mode.

Outside I stood (channeling Yoda, sorry) with a cigarette in hand and I did the unthinkable; I lit it. I took a drag and felt….nothing. I took a second drag and felt….guilt. A third drag convinced me that all I was doing was making me a foul-smelling pissed off person instead of the calm person I was hoping for. I put it out and returned to work feeling…proud except I stink now. How can three drags off a cigarette make my shirt smell like an ashtray so quickly?

I know that I am not a smoker any more. It tasted like shit and smelled like it too. The motions involved in smoking did not feel natural either. I could tell I was forcing myself to take those three drags. So, did I fail because I lit a cigarette during a time of extreme stress or did I succeed because I did not smoke it and returned to work?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

524 Words About Five Subjects

My G-d sometimes it is hard to be a “nice blogger.” Yes, I am trying to be a “nice blogger,” something different I know, but I am slowly realizing why there are so many nasty ones out there- it takes an act of G-d (literally usually) to make something nice flow with the ease of something nasty. There is a reason we blog and, for most of us, it is the outlet for us to say all those things we think, but can never say aloud; polite society rules and all to follow. Not you, my readers of course, I am speaking of all those “other” bloggers out there; the non-lemming bloggers. They are so mean…

I wanted to write about Ann Coulter and her latest foot-in-mouth occasion when she said that Jews need to be perfected and the world would be better off if they embraced it.

DEUTSCH: That isn't what I said, but you said I should not -- we should just throw Judaism away and we should all be Christians, then, or --
DEUTSCH: Really?
COULTER: Well, it's a lot easier. It's kind of a fast track.
DEUTSCH: Really?
COULTER: Yeah. You have to obey.
DEUTSCH: You can't possibly believe that.

I can’t write about that however. If she believes it then she believes it and it is her right. Besides, did I really expect something lucid to come from her mouth?

Then there was Vox Day (whom I usually enjoy, but never agree with) and his taking Coulter’s extreme views and running with them by said such tripe as:

Vanity Fair has recently announced that a remarkable 51 percent of the Vanity Fair 100 Power List are Jewish in a country in which Jews make up approximately two percent of the population. Jews also make up seven percent of the current House of Representatives, 13 percent of the Senate, and, according to John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, authors of "The Israel Lobby," roughly 100 percent of George W. Bush's foreign policy advisers
-Or even-

Given this irritating behavior, and the historical fact that Jews have worn out their welcome in literally dozens of countries over the centuries, it is the height of foolishness for a small number of misguided individuals to demand that 80 percent of the American population remain silent about the tenets of its religious faith.

But then again, what’s a little hate between friends really?

I do not mean to imply the two quotes above refer to one another by the way. There were many other (stupid)thoughts between the two. Those are just the two that stood out the strongest to me. I suppose that, as a Jew in America, I should either keep my faith and my mouth shut or join the bandwagon and catch the Jesus-train.

I was thinking about writing about the Britster and her getting charged with hit and run (hit me baby one more time?), but do I really need to be yet another dog in that pile? Has she not suffered enough? Do I really need the Google-hits for posting her name here? Yes I guess I do, but I will not comment other that to say "enough already!"

Then there is the saga of the Rubber Chicken Key Ring….I had no luck on that front this weekend. I found some rather nifty key accessories: the fart machine came really close to becoming a new addition as did the Homer Simpson quote generator, but alas, I already have a Dancing Bear and a Lego Darth Vader so space is limited. I only have enough room for the Rubber Chicken Key Ring. The hunt rages on.

One last thing. I am not sure if any of you collect toys at all, but this is an action figure any guy MUST own. It’s the figure you can’t refuse.

Imagine if I had something to say….

Friday, October 12, 2007

Friday, Friday, Friday, Friedday, Fry Day, Freeday, Freeway, Road

Scary may be jealous that we get Columbus Day off from work….well, not all of us (glares at Serena), but a good percent of us do, but we have an even greater reason to be jealous of him. Have you seen what they are selling in Japan recently? R2D2 Salt and Pepper shakers! That is so not fair! I think I am going to send him some money and hope and pray he finds a set for me. This is too cool to pass up.

We find ourselves once again at the end of the week which once again seems to fall on a Friday so welcome to “It’s Friday” once again. Our weekly gathering to bid fare thee well to the week and, for most of us, to scream “what took you so damn long” to the weekend. This weekend finds my parents leaving town. This would mean a massive party if I were 17, still lived at home, and had friends, but, since none of these are true it simply means my parents have left town. Yay?

I suppose my parents being away makes me the “sort of, but not really boss that nobody really needs to worry about or listen to” for the next fortnight. Should I let the imagined power go to my head? Why am I asking you when it already has gone to my head? I am pseudo-drunk on non-existent power! I can’t really do anything nor would I want to (lazy and all), but I am just happy knowing I could(n’t) if I wanted to.

Yes, if it is not yet obvious to you by this point, I have nothing on my mind right now except a single tumbleweed blowing back and forth over the carcass of my last inspiration. What was I inspired to do? Make a tumbleweed to blow back and forth of course.

Have a great weekend. I think I found a Rubber Chicken Key Ring. I am going to see if Spencer's has one. We have one of those stores left here and they do tend to stock those types of things. Photos of a happy Lemming with a key chain to come.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Kanrei's Newest Parody

This is an old song, but I heard it today at lunch and these are the lyrics I worked out for it. It is basically because the first time I heard each new song from this band, I thought it was a different band. They became nothing but a cover band to me.
Think about it-
Sex Type Thing- Alice in Chains
Plush- Pearl Jam
Creep- Alice in Chains
Wicked Garden- Soundgarden

Original- Creep by Stone Temple Pilots
For the tune:

The new words

We thought we could write a song
Well, it turns out we were wrong
So we took a look around
Found we dug Seattle’s sound
So like a cover band
We set out to be a new Pearl Jam
I need another line
To match the original song's time

We sound like a cover band
We sound like a cover band
Cause we had to steal
We sound like a cover band
We had to steal

We’re half the band we could have been
Oh yeah we’re stealing the style of those who have the fame
We’re half the band we could have been
Half the band we could have been

So here is the thing
I think I’m Eddie Vedder when I sing
And trying to capture fame
I joined Guns N Roses, but changed the name
And now it seems I found
The fame that had never come around
Almost a success
They make excuses for how I dress

We’re still just a cover band
We’re still just a cover band
Guess we like to steal
We’re still just a cover band
We like to steal

We’re half the band we could have been
But with twice the fans that we honestly deserve
We’re half the band we could have been
To be Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam is what we learned
Half the band we could have been
Half the band we could have been
Half the band

Monday, October 08, 2007

Columbus Day: A Holiday Celebrating a Fraud?

I feel like ranting today so strap yourself in and let’s roll.

Today is “Columbus Day” and I really cannot tell you why. Columbus did nothing. Yes, you read that correctly. He failed in 100% of his stated goals and did not even do what we seem to credit him with today.

Columbus set sail to discover a new trade route to the Indies. He failed in that regard as he never made it to the Indies. He is credited with discovering America, but he never set foot in America, he landed in Cuba. Also, there were already people there when Columbus landed. Remember, he was greeted by the indigenous people, so what exactly did he “discover?” How can you claim to find new land when there are already people living there?

Marco Polo set out to find a new trade route to China and he succeeded. He brought pasta to Italy yet he is honored by having a pool game named after him where one person closes his eyes and searches blindly for his target. Columbus, who failed in his endeavors, gets a holiday named after him. History is indeed a cruel mistress.

If anything, Columbus started a grand American tradition of padding your resume’ and taking credit for someone else’s work. He was a failure and a fraud. Maybe that is why we give him a holiday and take the day off from work for it. Or maybe I am just bitter that my office did not close today.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Thinking on a Friday? Wow!

Moms are amazing creatures when you think about it. No other creature on this planet can look at you and know exactly how to phrase something that will dig its way through any defense you may have up and get right to the heart of the matter. It really is amazing to me.

My mom has issues with my being alone. She cannot fathom how anyone can stand to always be alone to say nothing of preferring it. She worries that, while I may be happy in my youth alone, there may come a time later in life that I want to change my status only to find it too late. It is a very valid concern and one that I have myself from time to time, but my old age is far off and today I enjoy my solitude. It is an issue we have gone back and forth on for many years now.

Yesterday, my mom cut to the chase of the matter and phrased exactly how my being alone is damaging me in the short term and I finally saw it for myself for the first time.

“Brad,” she said, “you are becoming a Republican.”

Fuck, that hurt! An asshole I can take; stubborn I already knew; uptight I can sort of see, but a Republican? Christ man! That really cuts deep; to the bone almost.

I have always had a theory that socialization makes a person more liberal. That the more people one interacts with the more their personal beliefs are challenged and the more they start to understand that reality is a perspective game. What is true for one is not always true for all. This understanding really can only come about from socializing with other people.

When one is alone most of the time one comes to conclusions and beliefs constantly about everything they see and feel and hear, but, with no one to share these thoughts with, it becomes very easy to fall into the trap of “I am right because I hear no objections.” To me, that defines Republicans and I can see my mom knew this about me as well.

My mother wants me to go back to school. If not for a degree, then at least to interact with people, expand my thoughts, and challenge my beliefs. I have told her every time she brings it up that I would “next semester.” I think “next semester” has finally arrived. I don’t want to be a Republican. I want an open mind. I want to understand the plights of the downtrodden and try to help, not stand by and think “sucks to be them.” I want to be “Brad, the Kanrei” again. I know I’m still in here somewhere. I hope I haven’t lost me completely yet.

It’s Friday by the way.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Rockin' to the Thunder of 1000 Cans

Driving in my car today at lunch I heard “Maybe I’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney and Wings. It starts off with the piano intro and a few screams by happy fans that they are playing this song. This tells me that this is a live recording firstly and that people have obviously heard the original recording before.

The other day, while sitting at home, “I Want You to Want Me” by Cheap Trick came on the radio. It was the famous “Live at Buddakan” rendition that starts off with Robin Zander announcing it as the next song and greeted with a huge roar from the Japanese crowd. This tells me that this is a live recording firstly and that people have obviously heard the original recording before.

As a child I heard numerous songs from the landmark concert album “Frampton Comes Alive” dominating the FM dial. “Do You Feel Like We Do,” “Show Me the Way,” and “Baby, I Love Your Way” each broke the Top Ten with the album ranking number one on the Billboard 200 for 1976. These songs are each also greeting with an enormous cheer from an obviously massive crowd, happy to hear these classics live. This tells me that this is a live recording obviously and that the people have obviously heard the original recordings before.

Has anyone you know ever heard the studio versions of any of these songs? I ask because I am not convinced they actually exist, or, more to the point, I think these are the studio versions with canned applause added in. It has been done before. Please secure your Tin Foil Caps for this one and let’s ride.

Sitcoms have always used canned laughter or “previously recorded audience responses” as cues for the home viewing audience to know when to laugh. Laughter is contagious after all, so how better to turn an unfunny or mildly amusing joke into a laugh out loud affair than to add laughter to the soundtrack?

If a character tells a joke and there is no laugh track involved, the average viewer is not sure if they were really supposed to find it funny or not. They need the approval of others before they can express their enjoyment of the same thing. Most people do not want to stand out. They will go with the crowd even if they don’t get the joke. They will force themselves to laugh just because obviously it was funny.

To prove these points just think these simple questions: “How did the Flintstones have a live studio audience” and “Why would Happy Days specify they were ‘filmed before a live studio audience’ unless most other shows were not.”

Peter Frampton and Cheap Trick were struggling acts before these classic live songs placed them firmly in our ears and our hearts. How could a crowd that large possibly be wrong about their love for a song? I obviously must be missing out on something. I must correct this problem and love these songs as well.

In the spirit of full discloser, I do love “Maybe I’m Amazed,” “I Want You to Want Me,” and everything I have heard from “Frampton Comes Alive,” but I will now never know if they are really great songs or have I just become cattle.

***Lemming Movie Alert***

I just got sucked into a movie. I should have been in bed a while ago, but I could not stop watching it. It is an indie movie so it was just shown on HDNet once before it starts in theaters on the 10th, I think. It will be limited release, so don't feel bad if you don't catch it, but keep an eye out for the DVD or hopefully a second showing.

The movie is called "Weirdsville" by the way. I should probably write some type of review or something, but, as I said, I really need to goto sleep. Here is the Rotten Tomatoes page on it with a synopsis and links and such.

Good night and enjoy the trailer.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

What is With the Rubber Chicken Key Ring Already?

There has been some slight abstract weirdness here at the Lemming House as of late that I feel I should apologize for. While I am having a great amount of fun writing that stuff, I am not giving any thought to how much fun my reader may be having reading it. It is abstract and weird and basically devoid of any real purpose other than what I feel is a clever juxtaposition of words and I could be very wrong at that. It could be trying to be witty and failing miserably. I could be losing you with every word.

I have thought long and hard about my ever changing blog and what exactly I am doing it. I started off writing essays, moved to politics and reviews, swore never to write any form of “online diary”, tried some fiction, tried some poetry, tried some parody, wrote some “online diary” stuff, dwelled on pop culture, and have recently been exploring that sealed off part of my mind where things more collide into each other over traveling together.

I am honored that you have come along for the ride, but I am feeling like I owe you some form of consistency or at least quality to my rants. What am I saying lately exactly? A Rubber chicken key ring for G-d’s sake? What am I even talking about any more?

Here is my question. This is not an appeal for praise or to build my sense of self up or anything egocentric like that. This is a question strictly about those reading here and why: what do you find here that keeps you coming back exactly? Is it the politics? Or the pop culture commentary? Or is it these weird rubber chicken key ring rants? Do I make you smile daily? Weekly? Once in a blue moon?

OK, these are questions and not a single question like I implied, but I really think I want to know. I enjoyed writing these last few abstract posts, but have you enjoyed reading them or are you just killing time until I interest you again? I write what I want to write, but I also realize that a writer is nothing without a reader and the writer does owe some consideration to those reading their work. Feedback is essential.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Kanrei and the Search for the Holy Rubber Chicken Key Ring of Salvation

UPDATED Tuesday at 10:20 am

Today, Kanrei's Imaginary House for the Improbable Trade is proud to offer salvation. You read that correctly so there is no need to clean your screen. Well, you probably should. That is filthy! Are you smoking in front of your monitor? That is one thick film. I can barely see you.


“Who am I to offer salvation?”

I am so glad you decided to join the conversation. Without you this would be an insane monologue to nobody. As long as you keep that screen clean, this is a conversation. And you are currently speaking to the future “King of Everything That Can Never Be Seen” you lucky lucky bast....I mean you lucky devil you.

No, please get up. No need to bow. I am the same Kanrei I was before, only now I have an entire nonexistent world under my control populated by billions of teeny tiny mini short, but nicely robust Brazilian Penguins. I tried for Zebras (same color scheme), but they asked far too many questions. Penguins are happy just to be out of the cold. Plus, they are so cute when they waddle about.

Did you know Penguin shit is florescent? It's not so you were right before.

The salvation I offer is simple and mostly “catch free.” See, every Lemming deep down in his heart really wants a rubber chicken key ring. It is among the most holy of holy objects for those who practice the faith of Lemmingism.

For all I don't really actually survey and for all the teeny tiny mini short, but nicely robust Brazilian Penguins who look up to me (not out of respect, but because they are so short), no one has yet provided me with the holy rubber chicken key ring. Rubber Duckie yes; rubber chicken key ring no. I got rubber duckies coming out of my ears, but no rubber chicken key rings.

I would trade everything I can't see for just a momentary glance at this holy relic of comedic days gone by. I hear that the Holy Rubber Chicken Key Ring can be found in the Valley of the Pie Fight just south of Eye-Poke Gorge.

Of course, in the absence of a rubber chicken key ring, salvation can be achieved through a simple swearing ceremony. Any profanity will do.

UPDATE Roxan is saved. She found this: