LANGHORNE PRESENTS...

Hey Thinkers,
Welcome to my hilarious blog. Here you will meet a bunch of crazy folks that live inside my head. Mostly hateful, nasty critters, but they do make a decent point here and there.
I have one major rule (followed by an ever-expanding pantheon of minor ones): NO PERSONAL ATTACKS.
Think, disagree, argue. Don't be an asshole. My characters will take care of that. Cuss all you want but speak coherently and please proofread your comments.
These things will help you not only look smarter but help you to be taken seriously.
I welcome everyone to choose a side and rebut, refute, bandy, and bicker. Have fun with it.
Enjoy the show.

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Thoughts After The Shooting In Orlando June 12, 2016


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The Grit in the Gullet

So we have a new mass murder, a big one, and the argument immediately begins again on gun control. The righteous shouts renew on the need for more stringent gun legislation. The counter voices erupt with shouts about cold dead hands and constitutional rights. Then there’s my small (but vibrantly masculine) voice, possibly others as well, quietly murmuring there may be a larger problem here, something more difficult to grasp, something underneath; the problem of what makes this type of disgusting act possible and why, in our day and age, does the next one seem inevitable.

I view the gun argument as unrealistic (there is no chance of wishing guns away) or at its best, a band-aid that covers an infected wound, a way of ignoring the underlying problem. The reason for this distraction seems valid and for most people it has become a necessary distraction from the larger, trickier issue. The bottom line is this mass murder and all others like it are my fault. To say it’s societies fault or the assault rifles fault or the killers fault seems disingenuous to me. When I read about these killings, I know deep down, in some fundamental way, it is my fault. But if you think I’m going down alone, you’ve got another think coming. Most of you are coming with me.

I know it’s my fault because I don’t react in horror the way I should. I know it’s my fault because I don’t care about any of the people involved the way I should. These killings affect my life in no direct or impactful way. I dread the day one of them will, but at the moment, I am still safe in my own little world. I can imagine the pain the victims, witnesses, and families were and are forced to endure. Of course I can. I’m a writer, it’s part of the job, a big part. The trouble is, for me, I keep looking past the horror of the act itself. I’m on a constant search to find the ‘why’ and in trying to find the ‘why’ I inevitably find myself standing in the spotlight and on trial.

The problem is so much more than guns or terrorism or violence in movies and video games. The problem is in the way I live day to day. Being a curmudgeon (however lovable) means I am part of the problem. It means that I’m not connected to the people around me in a positive, uplifting way. My excuse for this is that I may be a humbug, but I try to make people laugh. It’s a good excuse. It grants me carte blanche to say what I feel needs to be said. I can spread terrible truths as the sad clown.

Unfortunately, most of us are responsible for, at the very least, dipping our toes in this collective negativity. Whether it be discussing politics or religion, watching Fox News, or bitching about the boss and that weird person in the office no one likes. We contribute by not calling our moms, ignoring the homeless, and repeating the American mantra of, “that’s not my problem.”

I’m not saying we are bad people. We aren’t. None of us are. This isn’t a judgement of our character. It’s an indictment of our innate survival instinct. Even these mass murderers were innocent and naive at one point. We can’t be held responsible for the lives we have never touched and pessimism is a legitimate lifestyle. But if we just took that extra second to ask cousin so-and-so what they meant by that hateful remark or found out why that one friend won’t let anyone look in their closet or made the effort to tell the people we love how important they are to us more often, then we all, in our own tiny way, could be contributing to the end of these terrible acts.

But until we do, until I do, there won’t be any easy answers. And I, for one, am sorry for my part in it.

-LJT 2016

 

FB STUFF #3: GREETING CARDS & PEARLS


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Here is more stuff from my Facebook group. Enjoy. Comment often.

Langhorne’s Rogues Gallery
ENEMY #79: Greeting Cards

Friends, relatives, and well-wishers…Fuck you. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got a certain amount of respect and possibly even an ill-defined emotion other than seething hatred for you but (you knew there was a but) once I see that over-sized sliver thin envelope languishing in my mailbox like a femme fatale in a bond movie waiting with a knife behind her back, I know some painful and uncomfortable choices are soon to be made. That brings me to The Box. I’m staring at The Box now. The Box- But no, later.

For the sake of brevity I will bypass the banality of the cards themselves. I won’t bore you with the minute details of the greeting cards offensive dullness or it’s approximately four million percent price mark up. Instead, I will concentrate on how it is your fault. How it is your thoughtful and considerate effort that contributes to the ruination of my humble existence.

Here is the greeting card process in as short a form as I can confine it to. After that initial mailbox confrontation, the paper-wrapped bane is carried inside and studied with a slow resigned sigh. Is this someone I will have to pretend to thank? Before I am swallowed by this dark train of thought that leads me down an existential track to suicide, I open the damn thing. The bastard that I am, I check for cash first and the urge to burn the card amplifies if none is found. At this point you have done one of two things; signed your name politely or written a cute little note. I tell you now, don’t write that note. The note haunts. It is the tell-tale heart.

“Why?” you ask. “How could this innocuous little memo cause any strife in the life of such a powerful figure such as you, Langhorne J. Tweed?”

A question deserving of an answer (and very well put I might add, kudos). The answer is the next step in the process. The “How (or do I) Dispose of This Blight” phase. I’m not one to place cards on my mantel AKA pine and cinder block shelves, instead I prefer to walk directly to the trash (read: “recycle bin” in the Northwest) and place it gingerly on top of the banana peels and Taco Bell wrappers (read: “smart water bottles” and “clean organic food containers” in the NW; banana peels are of course composted) and jam it as far down the can as my strength will allow. I watch it strain and wrinkle and rip as it falls further and further into its plastic-wrapped coffin, a twinge of guilt tickling the back of my brain. You see the problem right? How could I do such a thing to your note? I am already confronted with guilt. But your note. Your clever heartfelt memento. Your weird “the greeting card didn’t say enough” addition. Your thoughtful torturous affliction.

This brings us to The Box. I was suddenly confronted by The Box this morning. It usually languishes in the closet, out of sight, bothering no one. Your notes are there. I keep them. I’m trapped, suffocating on winter scenes and poorly drawn cartoons, puns and sappy poems, bible passages…for the love of something, there are bible passages in my life.

The Box sits in front of me now, full. Overflowing actually. The holidays are upon us. Two more cards have come. Notes in each. I stare at The Box. My heart aches. Guilt and some obscure reverent emotion I can’t describe have blasted through my emotional blockades. There is simply no room for more greeting cards. No more room for your notes.

So, friends, relatives, and well-wishers…Fuck you. I must purge you. All of you. And begin anew. Reborn.

At least ‘til I can piss on Hallmark’s desiccated corpse.

***

Langhorne’s Daily Pearls 2/4/13 thru 3/5/13

Sometimes dickish is the right way to be. -LJT

In order to make the mundane POP, one should maintain a constant veneer of the sublime. -LJT

There can be no win without penetration. -LJT

There’s a little pride to be had in limiting your TV watching to eight hours a day. -LJT

Bureaucracy is the essential building block of any successful civilization. Now please take this memo, sign it and give the pink copy to accounting, the blue copy will be sent to the office of records, the original is kept by you for legal reasons, and the goldenrod copy is sent (via vacuum tube) to the twelfth level of hell. -LJT

 

Blog Update

What can I say? It seems my recovery time has passed without any fanfare and I’m getting back to the business of writing. New posts are in the works. I’ve got starts on several subjects, including; Ancient Aliens, Democrats, a series on Free Labor, and more.

In the mean time, check out the Facebook page. There are daily quotes to laugh at and a rogues gallery with a new member added every Thursday.

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