Writes too much.

I was reading a story the other day about the possibility of Detroit getting a Whole Foods. Yes, the city infamous for not having a Kroger may well be getting a Whole Paycheck. Anyway, the story quoted a regional operations director for the chain named Red Elk Banks.

Native American names aren’t unheard-of here, but they’re unusual. The Indian tribes around here were so well assimilated that the tribe members tend to have names like everyone else’s. But just for the hell of it, I punched Red Elk Banks into the big G.

And whaddaya know, he’s a son of legendary Native American activist Dennis Banks. If Wikipedia is to be trusted, the elder Banks had six children — Janice, Darla, Deanna Jane and Dennis James, born 1962-64; Red Elk, born 1970; and Tatanka Wanbli, born 1971. It’s not often that you see a social movement that drapes so neatly over a watershed like that. I like the difference between the 1970 and ’71 models, between an Indian name rendered in English and Indian name, period.

The reporter called him “Elk Banks” on second reference. That’s wrong, don’t you think?

One of my first encounters with the simmering temper of our own Kirk, who was for decades a powerful force for correct usage on the Columbus Dispatch copy desk, was when a reporter turned in a story from the Ohio State Fair. It quoted a native American named something like “John Yellow Bird,” followed by the phrase, “(his real name).”

Sometimes I think the next time I see Kirk he’s going to have one of those forehead calluses like the crazier al-Qaeda chieftains have, from praying so often. Only his will be from smashing his head against his desk. Although he’s mellowed considerably.

What’s your Indian name? (Speaking of ethnic insensitivity.) I claim …Nancy Chickadee. Lately Alan’s been working one of his industrious little projects around here, trying to attract more black-capped chickadees to our feeder. It’s been an enormous success, and last evening the dogwood was alive with all their yakking, which is not why Alan calls them Nancy-birds, but what the hell, I’ll take the name.

(He calls them Nancy-birds for their two-note song, which I’ve always sounds to me like your mother calling you home for dinner: Nan-cy…din-ner.)

I have to leave early today, and translate an intern’s story into English. I have but one bit of bloggage, thanks to my Facebook friend Neil Steinberg, who is walking down memory lane via the newly digitized Chicago Reader archive. He flagged one of his old pseudonymous Bob Watch columns, about Bob Greene, of course. It’s a goodie, Bob enjoying a baseball strike:

Bob has hied himself to Sarasota, Florida, where he wanders giddily through the abandoned White Sox training center, admiring a red hose, “faded to near-pink on the grass.” Other objects–a batter’s cage, a wooden picnic bench, a glob of paint, a bird–also catch his attention.

There are no seasoned athletes to make rude noises or hurl insults in his direction, and Bob likes it. “Baseball’s message is clearest during moments when there’s no one on the field,” he writes. The next day, he fingers blank jerseys and eagerly awaits the arrival of the nonentity scabs who will wear them in shame.

That guy had such a thin bag of tricks. Those observations of utterly mundane details — the hose, the bench — is vintage Bob. In some ways, I wish he’d write more often, so I could make more fun of him.

And in keeping with our recent discussions, Alan had lunch at a waterfront restaurant yesterday, and overheard this bit of conversation from a nearby table: “New-plane smell is even more intoxicating than new-car smell.” Oh rly?

See you Thursday.

Posted at 9:53 am in Current events |

69 responses to “Writes too much.”

  1. Bitter Scribe said on June 28, 2011 at 10:14 am

    Greene specialized in the perplexed banalities of the middle class. What I found most annoying about him, besides his laziness, was his tendency to edge up to right-wing political positions (anti-abortion or, as in the linked column, anti-labor) and then tiptoe away.

    I really got annoyed when, just before his career ended, he churned out literally dozens of columns about a child custody case, all saying the same thing, and no one at the Tribune saw fit to rein him in. He was one of the biggest wastes of prime newspaper space I’ve ever seen.

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  2. Connie said on June 28, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Made my first visit ever to a Whole Foods just the other day. Only because it was right there across the street from Trader Joe’s. Never saw so much gluten free food in one place. Bought blueberries and salted caramels, and a bottle of shiracha. Probably won’t go again. Can buy shiracha/shiraga at Trader Joes.

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  3. Deborah said on June 28, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Whole Foods and Trader Joes are within a couple of blocks from each other near me. I shop at both, but during the summers I hit the many farmers markets. This morning I bought a pint of cherries at the one at the Contemporary Art Museum plaza which I cut across every morning on my way to work. Last week I got strawberries there. On Saturdays I go to the farmers market at Lincoln Park, that’s the best one of all. Every day of the week there’s a farmers market somewhere in the city.

    Trader Joes has the best prices in town and as everyone knows good wine at very low prices, and I’m not talking about Two Buck Chuck, which tastes ghastly. I like Trentatre for only $5.99

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  4. Peter said on June 28, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Just read yesterday’s comments, and congrats to Kate for going to Blue Lake. My son will be up the road at Owasippe.

    If you take Russell Road up to Blue Lake, you’ll pass by unincorporated Lakewood Club, which back in the day (I was told) was one of the stops on the black resort circuit.

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  5. prospero said on June 28, 2011 at 10:44 am

    Somebody was looking for crow video last week: This crow makes a tool.

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  6. John C said on June 28, 2011 at 10:52 am

    I know, I know. Funny-things-my-kid-said stories are boring. But the chick-a-dee calling Nancy in for dinner put me in mind of my all-time fave. I was walking with my daughter Sally, then 3 or 4, and we found ourselves passing under a tree that was crazy with birds chirping.
    “I wonder what they are saying to each other,” I said.
    “I think I know.”
    “I think they’re saying: ‘What do you want to do? I don’t know, what do you want to do? I don’t know, what do you want to do? I don’t know, what do you want to do?… ”
    Not sure why, but I found that hilarious.

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  7. jcburns said on June 28, 2011 at 10:54 am

    Maybe the reporter thought the guy’s first name was Red, as in Red Adair or Red Buttons. Red Elkbanks. Hosted the Newlywed Game!

    (By the way, my native american name is Deacon Blues.)

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  8. Dorothy said on June 28, 2011 at 10:57 am

    We’re enjoying the last few slurps of Trader Joe’s Honey Apple Butter which I got in early June. That’s going on the must-buy list next time I’m there. (John C you found that hilarious because it is!!)

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  9. coozledad said on June 28, 2011 at 10:59 am

    Re: Native American names. The guitarist for the band I was in, in college, rented half of a duplex from a New-Agey deadhead guy who aspired, as far as I can tell, to be a piece of driftwood furniture. When the guitarist’s wife was getting out of the shower, she could see the guy’s cigarette smoke drifting through the window. He was incapable of subtlety.
    He went to some spiritual retreat and returned, proud that the shaman had rechristened him “One Feather”. We always figured this was Assiniboine for “Dipshit”.
    These days, I think my Indian name is “Pemmican Danish”.

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  10. alex said on June 28, 2011 at 11:12 am

    I keep hearing birds saying “Peter, peter, peter.” Think I’ll take that as my Indian name.

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  11. Julie Robinson said on June 28, 2011 at 11:40 am

    Mmm…honey apple butter must go on the list. Alas no TJ’s near here.

    Pretty sure my Native American name would be Sweats Too Much. Or maybe Loved By Mosquitos. Can you tell I’ve been working outside?

    Charlie White retains his office. Even the Democrat voted in his favor. Indiana may soon rival Illinois for political corruption. http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20110628/NEWS07/110629509

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  12. Linda said on June 28, 2011 at 11:42 am

    Actually, in the Great Lakes area, such as you are, lots of Indians intermarried with the French, and so many have French surnames.

    I’m surprised Whole Paycheck has the audience it does, because specialty food, even organic, is so all over the place. When you can buy sea salt from the dollar store, as we can in Toledo (and walking distance at that), why pony up like that?

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  13. Joe Kobiela said on June 28, 2011 at 11:47 am

    I can vouch for the new plane smell!!!
    Baldheadedork, I carry a Garmin 496 with nextrad radar, big improvement over onboard,plus it has xm radio.
    Pilot Joe

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  14. moe99 said on June 28, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Back from KY. Don’t know which was more stressful, visiting mom, or coming home to my house where my youngest was in charge and he ran out of his ADD medication (you would think a 21 year old could figure out that you call before your meds run out to get your Rx renewed but nooooo). I am taking the day off just to deal with the chaos. And of course the three hour time difference is hitting me as well.

    So, I’ve forgotten if this youtube video on the Whole Foods parking lot has been posted here before:


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  15. Julie Robinson said on June 28, 2011 at 12:11 pm

    Moe, our son does no better and he’s 24, if that makes you feel better. (Or maybe it makes you feel worse.) Our whole family is ADD and I have to handle all the organizational tasks or pick up the pieces from the chaos. It gets very old and I empathize with your frustration.

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  16. beb said on June 28, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    Moe, our child has ADD and I can tell you, no matter the age, thinking ahead does not occur to them.

    My Indian name would have to be “Hole-in-ground.”

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  17. 4dbirds said on June 28, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Ditto on the forgetting to renew the meds. My 20 years is helpless. “Oh Mom I ran out of insulin yesterday and I ran out of the thyroid medication last week”

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  18. Dexter said on June 28, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    “Hokh! Mitakuye oyasin, hecitu welo.”
    Yes.We are all related, it is indeed so.

    nimino-wiijiiwaagan ag is my Indian name, but it looks too much like late night postings here at nnc. , so I will call myself “anishinaabe g Nipcondish”, which means “the human being of Pleasant Lake, Indiana.” Nipcondish is the Indian word for that lake just south of Angola, Indiana on the old road, (The Pottawatomie Indians called Pleasant Lake “Nipcondish,”)and the first part of my name is Ojibwe, from the Ojibway Indians.
    I never lived alongside that lake, but I spent many days on its little beach and in its cool waters, swimming across it.

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  19. Dexter said on June 28, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    I am surprised no one has yet claimed “Bohica” as his / her Indian name. Maybe there is someone who never saw this?
    B.end O.ver H.ere I.t C.omes A.gain

    Alex at #10 comment today: maybe Alex Three Peter. Maybe not.

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  20. Peter said on June 28, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    I don’t know what my Indian name would be, but I know I would be a proud member of the Fugawee tribe (or their safe for TV F Troop version, the Heckawee).

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  21. alex said on June 28, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    Wow, Dex, just swam in Nipcondish on Sunday. I have a friend who lives there on the beach side of the road just a little way south of the deer skull collector’s house.

    It’s gotta be the cleanest lake in northeast Indiana.

    Alex Three Peter. Kinda like that.

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  22. Halloween Jack said on June 28, 2011 at 1:44 pm

    Bob Greene wrote what is probably still the best account of the rock and roll business from the inside, Billion Dollar Baby. I haven’t really enjoyed just about any other thing that he’s written, and his personal failings are very well known, but Steinberg’s column goes way beyond snarky into the flat-out mean-spirited. I mean, really, fantasizing about Greene getting picked on by jocks in school? And is Roger Clemens one of the “heroes” that Steinberg talks about? How about Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Lenny Dykstra, or, heck, Steinberg himself? Is it worse to cheat on your wife, or to hit her?

    Arguably, Steinberg is a better writer than Greene ever was, but it doesn’t matter if you’re the best marksman in the world if you’re shooting fish in a barrel.

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  23. prospero said on June 28, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    How ’bout the old joke about the nomadic tribe named the Fukawee, whose ancient chief awakened after the tribe had relocated without awakening him in the middle of the night. Of course, when he awoke to unfamiliar surroundings the Chief said Weah the Fukawee? A fascinating consideration of Indian names is available by looking at the genealogies in Louise Erdrich’s books. If you’re only ever going to read just one of her books, I strenuously recommend Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse.

    Then there’s Buffy Ste. Marie’s name for the military-industrial complex, enemies of the earth, and white usurpers in general. Keshagesh=Greedy Guts.

    Agent Mulder was Sneaky Fox.

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  24. John G. Wallace said on June 28, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    When we lived in New Jersey we used to hear a bird that sounded like it was saying, “birdie, birdie, birdie”

    Prospero – amazing crow video, thanks.

    Can vouch for the new plane smell as I’ve been out to Piper for some events, but they seem to turn out fewer aircraft all the time, and I’ve seen employees trying to cash their paychecks at Wal-Mart only to be turned away. The planes they have waiting for delivery often languish in the semi-covered spots outside the paint shop for weeks. That horrible PiperJet will kill the company even if they drop the project today… too small, underpowered, and tail heavy. I’ll defer to Pilot Joe but I’d rather be in a nice single engine turboprop with a PT6 up front and feathering props that the PiperJet.

    I’d have to question if Mr. Hatch might have been better served as a Cirrus owner with the ballistic recovery system (parachute) although his son is tall 6’6″ and his family at the time of the first crash wouldn’t have all fit anyway. Might not have made a difference – he didn’t strike me as a guy likely to cry uncle and pull the parachute release. Sad story all around.

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  25. prospero said on June 28, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Regarding sports labor disputes, as an ex-jock and a Dodgers fan for life watching the predations of the McCourts and the demise of the franchise with dismay, I’m with players over management every single time. Look at the current NFL situation. In the first place, in America, a lockout is patently illegal. In the second place, the Owners are insisting that players sign on for a fixed %age of revenue, without access to the Owner’s books. What sort of sucker would agree to that? Oh, and by the way we want to add 120 minutes in which you have a good chance of being maimed for life to the season. Owner’s that want to whine about player salaries are basically like Republican voters favoring term limits. Stop me before I do it again.

    Bob Greene’s Billion Dollar Baby, I haven’t read it, so I won’t criticize. I like the first severall albums by Alice Cooper, a lot, and saw the band live many times in Detroit. Still, superficially, there seems to be a perfect nexus between band and author. The Alice persona is all sound and fury, while Vincent loved playing golf with Bob Hope. Somehow, from everything y’all say about BG (rarely seen a column), he sounds like an ideally superficial chronicler of something actually warm and fuzzy.

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  26. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 28, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    Owasipee is quite the operation; I’ve only seen parts of it – which sub-camp, Peter? I worked down toward the Indy border at Wood Lake Scout Reservation, where we always felt the looming presence of Owasipee far to our north.

    Nowadays my Dakota friends introduce me as Wicasa Wakan when we’re working jointly on programs; among the Lenape I work with I got Meemuns Uiisking long ago, but I don’t quite live up to “Baby Face” anymore.

    I love the fact that the first Anglo who got named Wicasa Wakan by the Dakota was the one agent they had who earned their respect, one Valentine McGillcuddy. If you climb Harney Peak in the Paha Sapa (Black Hills), his ashes and a plaque inscribed “Wicasa Wakan” are in a small cairn at the top, with the consent of the tribe.

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  27. Bitter Scribe said on June 28, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    @Halloween Jack: Normally I tell people, if you don’t like a writer, don’t read him or her, and I follow my own advice (or try to). But in his heyday, Greene was impossible to ignore. Day after day, there was his fat, smirking face on top of a column that seemed to take up a quarter of the front page of the Tempo section, saying the same predictable, banal things. Child molesters bad. Ohio middle class childhood good. It just got so putrid that Steinberg’s snark was like a cool shower.

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  28. nancy said on June 28, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Yes, what Bitter Scribe said. In fact, I think Steinberg said it best when he compared Greene to the Soviet Union. You couldn’t ignore him. The pseudonym was a bit much, but I see the reason for it.

    Something Steinberg wrote about Bob at the time he imploded, very similar to what I wrote at the same time — lost in the archives, alas — that was my very first Big Internet Splash.

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  29. Peter said on June 28, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Jeff, Michael will be at Blackhawk, which is where I worked in the mid ’70’s (and that’s one of the camps Gerald Ford worked at as well). I myself went to Beard back in the day, but that camp is long gone.

    Owasippe was about 10,000 acres in the’70’s, but it’s less than 5,000 now. There was a big to-do a few years back when the council wanted to sell off most of the rest of it. Believe me, no one – the council, the locals, the groups that wanted to preserve it – came out looking good.

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  30. del said on June 28, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    All the talk about camps and Indian names reminds me of Bill Murray’s speech about Camp Mohawk in Meatballs:


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  31. prospero said on June 28, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Was Dennis Banks playing in the NBA ’62-64?

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  32. Rana said on June 28, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Your observation about Red Elk Banks reminds me of my mother’s amusement at how one cataloging guide (she’s a librarian) suggested “Heat-moon, William Least” as the way that author’s name should be presented. (Given that his “last name” is in fact Least Heat-Moon – the Least part is not a middle name – it’s obviously incorrect.)

    The point about the changing children’s names within a single family interests me too – you see similar progressions across generations among Southern California Indians, from their original indigenous names, to Hispanic ones, to white American ones. One Cahuilla man, I remember from my grad school research, took advantage of his having a Hispanic name and surname to vote Republican as a Latino during the time before Indians were granted the franchise.

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  33. Kim said on June 28, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    @27 Bitter Scribe – you are right on. Bob Greene’s wet paper bag of tricks was something I puzzled over as a kid who read it for the same reason I read everything (and I am being literal) in the Trib: It was there, therefore it was important. I have since learned a thing or two about the Trib and Tribune Company, having worked for the latter and broadened my literary horizons beyond the former. Bob Greene has earned the snark, but I really don’t think anyone got it more right than Nance here. Thanks again for that, as it brought me to this crazy corner tap.

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  34. Halloween Jack said on June 28, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    Nancy, that Salon article is a good example of the problem that I have with Steinberg: even though it’s titled “Anatomy of Bob Greene”, it doesn’t really get under his skin. It starts with a lament about how difficult it was to pigeonhole Greene, ends with a lament about how he won’t have Greene to kick around any more, and is filled with inside baseball about the Tribune and nostalgia about making fun of Greene’s toupee. For someone who dogged Greene for so long (Steinberg is hardly one to criticize another columnist for “latch[ing] onto a subject”), Steinberg’s oddly unreflective about his own obsession.

    Contrast that with “The Confessions of Bob Greene” (here’s Bill Zehme talking about the story).

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  35. nancy said on June 28, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    I remember the Zehme article well, and as I do, I don’t remember Zehme getting to his internal contradictions any better than Steinberg. In fact, I recall a lot of averted eyes and oh-how-sad. He said later, well, Bob had been nice to him when he, Zehme, was a young reporter, and he’d always respected the guy. I believe it was one of our commenters here who noted that had Zehme been a young female reporter, the niceness would likely have been accompanied by an invitation to meet him at the Marriott. In fact, that commenter had had precisely that experience while a j-student at Northwestern. As did probably dozens of others.

    I’ll admit it: I don’t like Bob Greene and never did. He got what he richly deserved. The fact he continues to publish, in places like the NYT and CNN, I find utterly baffling.

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  36. Joe Kobiela said on June 28, 2011 at 6:14 pm

    Just watched Meatballs the other day,
    what a great movie
    “When the hand goes up, the mouth goes shut”
    Pilot Joe

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  37. alex said on June 28, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    I don’t think Steinberg started out to be mean-spirited, particularly. Bob Watch was a very funny concept when it was new. It’s just that he made what should have been a one-shot gag into a regular gig and he had to outdo himself every week. He wrote under an alter ego, but I knew his identity through connections at the Reader before he got outed.

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  38. Watson said on June 28, 2011 at 11:12 pm

    The beginning of that Zehme article is comically overwrought. It gets better as it goes along, but in the end I’m still left thinking: a middle-aged guy wrecking his life by chasing teenage tail is hardly a Greek tragedy. I was pretty young and not yet a Chicagoan during Greene’s heyday, but c’mon.

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  39. Dexter said on June 28, 2011 at 11:39 pm

    I’ll see your talking birds and raise you some talking lizards.
    I bet MichaelG remembers the famous “Fuck You Lizards” of Vietnam. Have a little listen…hear it?

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  40. brian stouder said on June 29, 2011 at 12:10 am

    It’s just that he made what should have been a one-shot gag into a regular gig and he had to outdo himself every week.

    I get what Alex is saying, but I’d go further. There are public figures who should be observed and held to account, whether they are regional biggies or national lip-flappers.

    Afterall, what odd combination of magic and voodoo confers any credibility upon anything that comes from the mouth of a college drop-out who broadcasts from a walled-off compound in West palm Beach, Florida; a person literally deafened by his beguilement with oxycontin?

    A national news organization should assign a national correspondant to produce 600 words per week fact-checking and reviewing his most extreme utterances. It would make that correspondant more famous than he or she is now; to that extent, it would be a parasitic relationship.

    But I cannot think of anyone more richly deserving of parasites.

    (and when they find Rush over-dosed and keeled-over next to his toilet, then that correspondant can write her book, which will be a best seller)

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  41. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 29, 2011 at 8:14 am

    Dexter, somehow I zipped past your “Mitakuye oyasin” post (my Firefox is all jerky, probably because I have too many active programs running let alone a long string of tabs in the browser). I grew up in Pottawatomie territory, but never talked to any actual Potts until I got up into the Pokagon lands in Michigan, where they’re more Catholic than Notre Dame. A friend of mine who’s Odawa and a prof at IU is in Midewin training, but can only tell me that she can’t tell me much about what she’s learning, “but I know you’d find it fascinating.” Herbs and healing and stories, but it’s just out of reach for such as me. Gotta have some Indian blood to be welcomed into the lodge.

    Even so, we are all related.

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  42. Dexter said on June 29, 2011 at 9:30 am

    JmmO: I am not really much of a student of Indian nations, but I get interested when a friend or acquaintance wants to talk. I met the late Barefoot Bob Hardison of Idaho through a good friend locally, who knew him from a recovery blog.
    Bob was amazing; he and his son Casey http://www.brightoncity.com/argus-frontpage.jpg
    ( who is notorious in England as a sort of “mad chemist” who is doing hard time for LSD manufacturing and distribution) donned buckskin and canoed hundreds of miles down western rivers, living off herbs and plants and fish and small game all the way.
    Bob visited me here in Ohio on his way to Montreal to start his Windwalker project, which would culminate in a one-man Trimaran trip from the USA to Ireland, and then into a shipwreck near Gibraltar, a rescue by an Egyptian freighter and a ride to Egypt and a plane ticket home to Idaho, where he began restoring ancient Model A vehicle for a cross-country drive to Florida.
    He called himself “Windwalker” and he was highly in tune with the Indian way of life. Many stories, many quotes, much about a lot can be found by poking around barefoot’s world, an easy search. Now a lot of the stuff on that website is about super-patriotism and all that , and old Bob did wear a Confederate soldiers’ hat…but he left quite a legacy when he passed about 30 months ago.
    Casey William Hardison speaks…genius, wacko, dangerous criminal, freedom fighter…well?

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  43. brian stouder said on June 29, 2011 at 9:51 am


    Upon seeing the headline –

    Woman sprays police with breast milk

    I thought surely she threw a container of milk at the po-po, but no!

    an excerpt:

    It said Robinette’s husband told authorities the pair had been attending a wedding when his wife got drunk and started a dispute. He said that she hit him multiple times before locking herself in her car outside a banquet facility on Saturday. Sheriff Walter L. Davis III said that when police approached the car to speak to her, she yelled profanities and refused to get out. “When deputies attempted to remove Robinette from the vehicle she advised the deputies that she was a breastfeeding mother and proceeded to remove her right breast from her dress and began spraying deputies and the vehicle with her breast milk,” Davis said.

    Just think how many chuckles Nance could wring from this, if she posted today; and, where’s Youtube when you want them, eh?

    Oh well – just keepin’ the residents of the cheap seats abreast of the latest news from good ol’ Ohio…

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  44. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 29, 2011 at 11:18 am

    By the way, I think Bitter Scribe did not get enough praise for noting that Greene “specialized in the perplexed banalities of the middle class.” That’s a hazard I often stumble into, and the phrase may serve me as a salutary warning.

    Plus, it’s good writing. Thanks, BS!

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  45. Bob (not Greene) said on June 29, 2011 at 11:23 am

    @brian stouder — with mugshot goodness

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  46. brian stouder said on June 29, 2011 at 11:37 am

    Bob – wow!

    I pity the poor souls at the school where she works, who are (no doubt) scouring through their records to see if there’s been any incidents or complaints

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  47. LAMary said on June 29, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    Here’s another Nancy:


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  48. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 12:07 pm


    Regarding those lizards. With the ridiculous current discussion of tennis players and grunting, I’m reminded that one of my brothers always claimed that Monica Seles said (Fornicate) Me when she ‘grunted’ on her serves and big points. Obviously, it had to be toned down for commercial consumption, but this American Express ad proved she had a sense of humor and didn’t take herself overly seriously.

    Jimmy Connors was the all-time grunter. I saw him play MacEnroe (pretty noisy himself) once at Longwood in Brookline, and after a particularly gatorish grunt, Mac walked to the net with a concerned expression and asked if Connors was alright. Connors glared at him (serious mutual enmity, these two) and Mac asked Connors if Jimmy needed time for an equipment change (his shorts). Connors lost his game completely, overhit everything, and, for once, an entire stadiumful of tennis fans was on McEnroe’s side. Superior gamesmanship, and hilarious. Anyway, current male players are plenty loud (Raffa) but it doesn’t seem to bother the Lords of Tennis. This always comes up during the fortnight at W, and I’m sure the subtext is “What is ladylike tennis playing?”The Brits surely won’t bring up the borborygmous of Andy Murray, their fairly obnoxious Great White Dope. Other players on tour reportedly said that Connors grunted to cover up loud flatus.

    Oh, and I think “perplexed banalities of the Middle Class” sounds like something Updike would have said about Cheever, when it better described his own books. It sure sounds like a perfect description of the Rabbit Angstrom books. Cheever was more about rich folks heading for Grey Gardens.

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  49. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    From that mugshot, the police officers may have been in danger of drowning.

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  50. Bitter Scribe said on June 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Jeff–I’m glad you liked that phrase, but in all honesty, I filched it from another writer. It was originally written about Harry Golden, a longtime newspaper columnist who specialized in Jewish nostalgia. I don’t remember who came up with it, but it was quoted in “Reading Myself and Others,” Philip Roth’s collection of essays.

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  51. coozledad said on June 29, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    I don’t know how they did this without serious hand injuries:

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  52. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    Cooz, Which one’s Andre and which one’s Wallace Shawn. Lord I hated that movie. And I think Wallace Shawn is a riot. Just rather see him as Vizzini trying to outwit Inigo Montoya, or as Jill Hennessy’s shrink on Crossing Jordan

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  53. Jenine said on June 29, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Thank you for the tiny herding dog LAMary!

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  54. MichaelG said on June 29, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    Just back from Riverside and another night at the lovely Mission Inn.

    Don’t have an indian name. Nobody ever offered me one.

    I agree that sports owners are mostly a bunch of greed heads and deserve whatever grief comes their way. However, with so many zillions of people slaving away at jobs for menial wages, the effort to feel sorry for poor, oppressed pro athletes is way, way back there beyond the back burner. How horrible that they might have to work for fixed wages. Tough shit if they blow all their $$ on pussy and cars and possies.

    Dexter, I do indeed remember the fuck you lizards. I thought it was a joke at first, then we thought it was a bird and then discovered it was a lizard. One time when I was in the recon team we were set up on some hill top. It was night. One of the guys had an urgent call. He advised that he was going outside the perimeter to do what he had to do. “When you hear the fuck you lizard three times, that’ll be me coming back. Don’t shoot.” A little while later we heard a crashing in the brush and then this deep voice. “Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you.” We fell about laughing hysterically. I guess you hadda been there. Just remembered his name. Corporal Stock. Nobody ever knew his first name. Just Corporal Stock. Corporals were rare in those days. Only way one became a corporal was to be a sergeant first. Stock was always wanting to show off his genital warts. Everybody was “um, no thanks.” or “that’s OK, Stock, I’ll take your word for it.” God, it was another world.

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  55. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    Joe Kobiela, what’s that website to look at weather cells? Here in Hilton Head, nobody flew a plane of any sort in in the last two hours. please check my time stamp. This was the most No shit violent isolated storm I have ever seen, and we get them here. Immense winds and gusts, torrential downpour serious thunder and lightning. I’ve seen storms of this magnitude over the desert, but not coastal. This was biblical. Nobody but Sky King could have flown through it, I don’t think but if you could, Joe I’d hire you any time if I had to get somewhere. I believe you are A Number 1. I’d figure you’d be a guy for depositions on What were people thinking. So am I, about what sort of moronic decision annybod could make about a material or material or application somebody could decide on. Y I’d trust myself and anybody I love. You are obviously somebody that knows what he’s talking about. My question is: are small planes with really good pilots as safe as airlines? Have you ever flown into Hilton Head Island? How expensive is your service and how does it work for 6 month olds? No shit Joe. I want to fly my kid and her hubby and their 6 mo. old into HHI. How comfortable would the trip be? No shit, I am actually considering this. Joe, their seems to be no limit to your expertise. Or should I fly them into Savannah on Commercial? I think it would be nice for them to have teir own plane. Not sure how to handle this.

    No shit Joe, this was an astounding storm. I wouldn’t have wanted anybody I care about trying to get on the ground in this shit. It was an amazing storm. I’d really like your opinion on how horrendous this was. We live with hurricane potential and this had to be tropical storm shit. It was almost impossible to ride a bike through it, but it was invigorating, like making it through preseason. Somebody that acknowledges me here occasionally, Dexter: I think you asked me if anything normal ever happened to me. Were you asking me if I made shit up? Never. I could tell you the story of Fenway Dick, his giant German Shepheard Palladin (baddest name he could think of, and his machete). These things happened to me. If you live a very irresponsible life, strange things happen. And Fenway Dick’s history of strangeness. This was all how to deal with how to do. Fenway Dick was a gigantic man in shabby GI crap. He did at one point get fed up with me and swing the blade. It buried in the doorstop about an inch from my forehead, and I did not move. I’m not making this shit up. I do not make shit up. And yeah, shit happens because I act like a seriously irresponsible asshole. Why not? You can be AJGreene and do everything right and still have the NCAA screw you you over. Whatever y’all think about football and the NCAA and NCAA bias. Whatever y’all say. I’d say Soulfinger Is they’re somebody that likes Nancy.com that doesn’t like Soulfinger? Seems like the great soul most of us like about each other. Sorry I’ve intruded.I think about Nancy as somebody that loves Detroit. I love Detroit. I went to a high school that loves detroit. Jake Locker? that’s Matt Stafford, morons. Anybody that thinks locker is Matt is one moron. When Matt just made this shit, when he was hurt and won the game. Are we morons

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  56. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    Are -eople morons?
    No way you aren’t morons

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  57. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Who is the best QB? You have to be some mcdonalds you fucking morons
    You couldn’t come close to qn idiot. YOU QRE Q FUCKING LIQR, GOOD WHATEEVER YOU SCUMBAGSS


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  58. prospero said on June 29, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    QR3E YOU KIDDING. you 2e 2e couldn’t conaiderast.

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  59. Little Bird said on June 29, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    I really want to know how that happens so fast. That was THREE MINUTES!!!

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  60. basset said on June 29, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    As I’ve said before, you have to craft your buzz… obviously we caught him just as he was peaking. On what, I don’t want to guess.

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  61. Joe Kobiela said on June 29, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    I saw the storm, I would have parked it and let it blow by, yes I think Charter is safer than airlines, I would have to know from where to where to give you a price. I have flown in to hilton head and also Savannah and Beufort.
    Pilot Joe

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  62. prospero said on June 30, 2011 at 12:38 am

    Who is this this best QB Lions fans you hve the best arm and the toughest bastard that that will ply through throubh thrroughr anythingg.


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  63. Dexter said on June 30, 2011 at 12:44 am

    MichaelG: Corporals were indeed rare but I knew just a few, maybe three, who wore the double chevrons of corporal rank.
    I was told Corporals were (at least then) considered NCOs (non-commissioned officers) and to be a corporal you had to have been in a platoon command role, like platoon leader, and not in a specialty area like I was as a medic, or a cook would have been. Some of the bravest American soldiers were the scouts, who worked with ARVN (South Vietnamese soldiers) a lot of the time. Many of the US scouts became corporals.

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  64. prospero said on June 30, 2011 at 1:00 am

    Joe, that was an astounding storm. I pedaled through it, and it was fairly scary.

    everything you zy, I’d trust my most precious with you. Not with your politics but for sure with you’re with your knowing how to aLWAYS doing the right thing, NO WAY HOW HOW JOE IS MANFRO. WHO’D HAVE THOUGHT. ARE PEOPLE IDIOTS? WHATEVER YOU THINK, YOU RE STILL MORON. WHATEVER nd we suck bigrimw. There is no wy this guy isn’t an idiot. How do we deal with being so stupid?


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  65. prospero said on June 30, 2011 at 1:16 am

    I ‘ve got the most perfect kid kid in history. She;a brillint nd she;s hd oerfect chil. find it stounding zhe will hve Nything to di with me, Zhe doesn’t thing ‘m totl zzhole. I’m blessed. What I ever said. Hardison is so flipped for Parker.

    Who wouldn’t be? She is just ridiculouzsy competent. Totally astounding. Really, simple whatever?
    Not close, figure this out hed of tume. These pdople re smrter thn you are.

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  66. prospero said on June 30, 2011 at 1:17 am

    Joe Kobiela, what’s that website about weather cells. I just rode my bike four miles from the grocery store through what I think is the most violent I’ve witnessed on Hilton Heaad. Lightening like hell. Major league, like 30 mph NE winds, straight in my face.
    coupla cases, frozen fries and several lbs of marked down T-bones. I’ve been out in some bad ones, including a noreaster out on the Maine Coast in kayaks. but this one still has Rip rollin. I’ve disparaged storms compared with tornadoes, and I’ll stand by the idea of tornadoes clearly being the most deadly natural disasters that don’t destroy mountins on top of people that can’t flee. And evacuation may become matial law, but I’m planning on being the Barbara Frietsche. Shoot if you will this old gray head. I’m not budging, unless they pry my cold dead hands of my cooler and my boombos and albums. LAMary. Whod’a thought a ratdog could act like a real dog. So Chihuahuas get asinine haircuts like poodles? I didn’t know.

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  67. prospero said on June 30, 2011 at 2:48 am

    I just finished the stangest novel I’ve ever read. Witches on the Road Tonight. It’s very good. Woundrous writing, Sort of a mystey. But strange. Like Carson McCullers combined with the Buendias which is strange. It’s sorta like weird, but who’s to say? Like Carson McCullers but not that whole MgicAL deal. In the long run, whose a better writer? Carson McCuller or Flannery O’Connor, MUCH BETTER WRITER.

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  68. Dexter said on June 30, 2011 at 8:35 am

    prospero, when you wrote “Fenway Dick” I instantly thought of Dick Radatz.(He fell down stairs, cracked his head on carpet-covered concrete, and died six years ago , just two weeks shy of 68 years of age).
    Radatz scared the beejeezuss out of American League hitters, following baseball’s earlier crazy-man reliever, Ryne Duren, who wore coke-bottle glasses and conveyed the message he was wild and blind and he didn’t care one bit if he hit you in the head…or just struck you out.
    Now both are dead, and I just checked…Ryne Duren died six months ago of old age age just shy of 82 years. Damn…last time I saw him , he was on my TV screen in a baseball uniform…that was 46 years ago?

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  69. coozledad said on June 30, 2011 at 10:04 am

    You’d think his arse-crawling bagman schtick for the Bushies would have earned him a little contempt from his employers, but no. Halperin has had too much Republican cock in his mouth to be permitted to make assessments of the president, let alone carry water for the right on TV. The Post needs to fire him now.
    I don’t know why I thought Halperin was at The Post. Time is such a piece of shit I doubt they’ll even consider firing him.

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