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The Mobtown Shank #292: The Independence Express!

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  • Mobtown Shank
    THE MOBTOWN SHANK #292 This space for rent. Baltimore s free weekly interactive e-zine. All the stuff that s worth doing in the Baltimore-Washington
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 1, 2005
      THE MOBTOWN SHANK #292
      This space for rent.
      Baltimore's free weekly interactive e-zine.
      All the stuff that's worth doing in the Baltimore-Washington
      Metropolitan Area and beyond.
      For the week of 7/1 - 7/8
       
      I. ED. LETTER: Eatin' Crow
      II. AMERICAN STANDARD: Jerks And Titties...
      III. QUESTION O' THE WEEK: Bad Words
      IV. MADAM 8-BALL: Indie
      V. FREAK O' THE WEEK: Freaky Performers
      VI. THE NEWS: Grrl Trends
      VII. OVERHEARD: Ugly Americans 
      VIII. STUDENT BODY: Laxatives
      IX. GODWATCH: He I$ Ri$en
      X. RANDOM FACTOID: Numbers You Don't See...
      XI. WHAT THE FUCK: We Know Were Bin Laden Is?!!!
      XII. SHANKTV: Ok Go & The Ditty Bops
      XIII. RANDOM FACTOID: Ok, We Admit It. We Do Torture Some.
      XIV. WHAT THE FUCK: Bush Calls 1/2 Of America Traitors.
      XV. WEATHER FORECAST: According To Farmer's Almanac 
      XVI. RANDOM FACTOID: Repubs Too Conservative
      XVII. WHAT THE FUCK: Liberals Cause Pedophilia
      XVIII. AL STANDINGS: Orioles Baseball 
      XIX. RANDOM FACTOID: Attacks Start With Us
      XX. WHAT THE FUCK: Long Lasting Troes
      XXI. GEEK TOOLS: Serif Photoplus
      XXII. RANDOM FACTOID: Bush Brings War
      XXIII. WHAT THE FUCK: Bush Flip-Flops On Exit Strategy
      XXIV. OSAMA CLOCK: Days Since Bush Promised To Get 'Em
      XXV. ATOMIC PICK: Emily Flake's Lulu Eighball Book!
      XXVI. RADIOSHANK: 10 MP3s 
      XXVII. THE SHANK: Weekly Calendar
      XXVIII. THE SKAG: Upcoming Shows
      XXIX. SHANKLAND DIARIES: Totally Daily Diary Comics
      XXX. GOFF REPORT: Rush's Mind
      XXXI. LINKS PEOPLE IM ME: How To Get Girls
      XXXII. SHANK CLASSIFIEDS: Modern Station Wagon
       
      I. ED. LETTER==============================
       
      EATIN' CROW
      Okay, so I was a little too full of myself last week. I got a Shank out on time for a change and was all like, "wassup peoples, I'm hot shit." The next week? Back to being a day late and a dollar short.
       
      Remember this 4th of July, the true meaning of Independence Day.
      It's not about partisan bickering.
      It's not abouth he said/she said political bullshit.
      It's not about a bum war on fake evidence.
       
      It's about drinking some ice cold beer, grillin' some dogs (or nasty tofu if that's your thing), and then, when the alcohol sets it, it's about blowing shit up real pretty-like.
       
      Okay, I'm about to hit the ol' cookout circuit.
      Have a great 4th everbodies.
       
      Enjoy you Shank!
      II. AMERICAN STANDARD======================
      by Benn Ray
       
      JERKS AND TITTIES  AND BIGGIES AND WAWA'S
      The other day, I'm driving home and some guy almost pulls out on me.
       
      He doesn't, but it was enough to startle me. I pointed at his car, and looked at Rachel and said, "That guy is a jerk."
       
      Then she laughed at me.
       
      We don't call people "jerks" enough anymore, I don't think. When we're kids, anyone who pisses us off, any of our enemies, well, they're jerks.
       
      But as we age, they become assholes or dicks. In some instances they are (as I've recently become fond of saying), "douches."
       
      Yet, calling someone a jerk in the heat of an argument as an adult? It usually turns the fight into a joke. Tempers immediately drop and people laugh.
       
      "Did you just call me a 'jerk?"
      "Dude, I totally just called you a 'jerk.'"
      And then everyone giggles, makes up, and on with life we go.
       
      The thing about "jerk" is that it's childish. It seems to imply something different than "asshole" or "dick." It implies injustice. Like, "what that guy's doing, it's not fair, he's a jerk."
       
      As an adult, it's hard to call someone a jerk. But it's also hard to shop at a "WaWa's."

      There aren't many around these parts, but still, I can't imagine saying, "We need more ice? Be right back, I'll run to the WaWa's."
       
      If feels too undignified, like referring to breasts as "titties." Imagine you're in the heat of passion, people are topless, mouths are on parts, and you either say, or hear your partner say, "your titties are amazing."
       
      Kinda breaks the mood doesn't it?
       
      You may as well be at a Wendy's at that point. Why a Wendy's? My friend Jay, a fan of Dave Thomas and his square burger, used to like to point out that they humiliate you just to super-size something. At Wendy's, it's not called super-sizing or up-sizing or extra-sizing, it's called a BIGGIE.
       
      "I'd like a Biggie Fries and a Biggie Diet Coke with those 2 double cheese burgers please."
       
      He said he could never up-size his order at Wendy's because he felt too retarded saying "Biggie Size."
       
      It's hard being an adult, you have to watch what you say. But the guy who thought up the Wendy's "BIGGIE" size? Or anyone who refers to breasts at titties? Or the person who named a chain of stores "WaWa's?"
       
      They're clearly all jerks.
       
      III. QUESTION O' THE WEEK====================
       
      WHAT PHRASE MAKES YOU FEEL UNDIGNIFIED?
       
      E-mail your responses to:
      MobTownShank@...
       
      *********************************************************
      Prize for this week's best response is a SAPATTIVUOSI CD (Scandanavian band covering Black Sabbath), courtesy of Goff Brown & The Goff Report.
      *********************************************************
       
      SHANK #291 QUESTION_______________________________
      WHAT IS MIDDLE-AGED?
      I’d say anytime past the fall of Rome and before The Renaissance.
      -Todd Brizzi
       
      Anyone 10+ years older than me, perpetually.
      -Denise Cantner
       
      Didn’t you already ask this before? ...Wait, is this a trick question?
      -Hannah
       
      The joy of realizing that a lot of life is totally dopey and not worth sweating - and finally learning when and when NOT to pull a blade on a junkie. Oh, and that zombies are the best fucking thing ever.
      -Goff Brown (36)

      Middle Age varies from person to person. It starts, I guess for most people, some time in the mid 20's when you wake up one summer morning in some shithole sweatbox in a jerkwater town and a voice in your head says, "Jesus, I'm almost 25 and I've never had a real fucking job." (Is this too autobiographical?) Anyway, it's all downhill from there, you get the real job, the house, the wife, the kids, and then one of the few fun things you get to do is try to start up a softball game. Pikesville Middle School, July 3, Sunday, 9:30 am!, and every Sunday after that!
      -Steve Messick
       
      Just like adolescent except fat and bald, now pass me a fuckin' beer!
       -Matt Rappaport

      When two or more of the following things happen: you start to follow golf… on TV; you habitually don’t go to parties/out drinking because you have to be at work at 9 the next morning; you refuse to go to a show because there’s going to be too many people, and you’d rather go to another venue because you can sit instead of stand; you develop an interest in lawn care; the last party that you went to that was busted by the cops was more than 10 years ago; you consider buying a nose or ear hair trimmer, or both; you can’t say where you can score some acid, but you do know a good roofer; you can’t remember the last time you woke up wondering where you were, who is the strange person next to you, and where your pants went; or you eat out more often than you go out. Feel free to add your own criteria to the list; everyone can play.
      -Steve Ashby
       
      It's (a) walking about 13 steps from my office to my research team, only to realize when I get there that I've forgotten, en route, what the fuck piece of analysis I was going to talk to them about; (b) remembering at 1:00am in Molly's and having to tell Joey in case I forget again; (c) forgetting the next day to ask Joey what it was; (d) remembering to ask Joey, only to find out he forgot we were ever in Molly's together; (e) making an ordered list of these events to share with everyone and worry about; (f) blaming it all on the loud music that kids listen to these days.
      -Steve Freeland

      The time in a man's life when he realizes that the bean bag is getting dangerously close to the toilet water when taking the morning dump.
      -Steve Roman
      Congratulations, Steve. You've won  a set of CHESTER STACEY pins, courtesy of CHESTER STACEY.
       
      SHANK #291 GENERAL FEEDBACK_____________________
       
      PROBLEMS WITH NEIGHBORS
      Boy do I have some shitty slumlord fuck for a neighbor! I thought you might like to know (and save 15 or so precious minutes of your life) that complaints about 4 foot high grass and nasty lawn matresses must go through 311 not the Housing Code Enforcement Division numbers you gave out last week. 311 notifies the Sanitation Department. The Sanitation Department sends a Sanitation Officer out to take pictures and issue a ticket. If your slumlord fuck neighbor is like mine, he moves the matress to the front yard and you repeat steps 1 through 3 over again until eventually you wear him down. It's a small victory, but the satisfaction of knowing you cost them some time and money tastes sweet. Good luck with Rose and her so called juke box!
       -Joe Tropea
       
      We had similar experiences with the woman who lived next door to us in my first off-campus house on Light Street in the ‘bury. This woman actually painted her curb yellow, apparently thinking that would make it illegal for anyone to park there. Unfortunately, trying to annoy her with the soothing sounds of Sweetloaf by the Butthole Surfers didn’t seem to make a dent (she was very stubborn), so we had to resort to more clandestine attacks in the battle of the neighbors. Specifically, we realized that when sitting on our front porch with our cable box remote control, we had a direct view through her screen door to her cable box, and would randomly switch the channels… sometimes to MTV, sometimes to PBS, and sometimes to scrambled porn (just to see if it was scrambled there too, of course). We took the numerous times the cable company van was parked in the fake yellow zone to be a minor victory. (*Disclaimer: to be fair, after 15 years of looking back on it, the lady wasn’t as bad as she could have been and was actually pretty tolerant, considering that we were pretty much asshole neighbors. If she still lived there I’d probably consider apologizing, if the whole cable box thing didn’t still seem kind of funny to me. Apparently I’m still somewhat of an asshole in that regard.)
      Oh, and I’d be embarrassed about the Fleetwood Mac too.
      -Steve Ashby
       
      A CROWDED HEART
      dear joe grey :
      can i not have room in my heart for the hatred of rich white people AND pretentious, self-righteous cocksuckers? because they happen, my friend, and right here on the shank!
      -el mannion
       
      WORLD LEADER PRETEND
      OK, so if Benn is president and Dug is vice president, don’t they pretty much cancel one another out and leave us hopelessly leaderless? I’m kinda thinking a Benn Ray/Steve Messick ticket might be more progressive. That or you could make Dug the dictator and let everyone else suffer under his reign of terror.
      -Erin Sullivan
       
      FREAK O' THE WEEK
      I’m pretty amused by crocheted vaginas myself: http://www.crochetmycrotch.com/ . Of course one of items offered is earmuffs.
      -Steve Ashby
       
      STAB PATROL T-SHIRT SUGGESTIONS
      How about "stabalicious"?
      -Neil Eber
       
      Those Stab Patrol shirts should say -
      on the front: "I have Hep C"
      and on the back: "later asses"
      Please order me one so I can wear it to Rock and Romp, that is of course, after I steal a kid somewhere on the westside.
      -Sue Wood Goodall
       
      A PERSONAL INVITE TO NEIL TOBIAS
      Dear Mr. Neil Tobias...Sir:
      It's great to have someone in the Shank call it like it is and rock it so hard! That's why there could be no greater honor than to have you, Mr. Neil Tobias, show up to play softball, on Sunday, July 3, 9:30 a.m. at Pikesville Middle School.  I figure you could fit it in between sets and/or sex with your no-doubt numerous babes, and show us what a bunch of pansies McGwire and Giambi and their ilk are.
      -Steve Messick
       
      FREE THE FLICKR
      Well, tried to give it away, but seems Denise has already got one. If this one comes out before July 1st, I’ll probably still have one more to give away. Email quickly at socialblunders@... if you’re interested (and don’t already have a pro account).
      -Steve Ashby
       
      THE SLAUGHTER RULE
      Benn's statement was that Howard Dean's statement that Republicans are mostly white and christian was pretty much on the mark and not outrageous. Benn also gave percentages of minorities based on the state senates across the country. It's still a valid point.
      Further, I don't really see any mainstream news towing the liberal line. If that were the case there would be a significantly greater outrage and deservedly so against this administration.
      Plato's Republic? Isn't that where Socrates endorses extreme censorship? (no musicians/actors), and genetic engineering? Big ol' grain of salt. Anyway to end on a positive note, kudos for recognizing the Flag protection bullshit for bullshit. I can't believe the Repugs are so desperate they have to drag that shit out.
      -Steve Messick
       
      I always thought it was because of all of that stuff that goes on in DC. Following politics is something some people might consider worth doing, especially in the DC area. I personally think it’d do well with its own section of the Shank, rather than spread out amongst everything, but that’s a whole format issue really, not a content issue. I could be missing something too… so I wouldn’t rule that out.
      -Steve Ashby
       
      NEWS FLASH
      internet is the new television.
      -joe grey
       
      ANOTHER SHANK CLASSIFIED TESTIMONIAL
      Please take out my fence ad, it's already
      been given away. I got two calls w/in four days, (obligatory plug), Gosh! The Shank classifieds sure worked for me!
      -Steve Messick
       
      IV. MADAM 8-BALL HOROSCOPE=============
       
      ARE YOU INDEPENDENT?
       
      AQUARIUS: Outlook good.

      PISCES: Concentrate and ask again.

      ARIES: As I see it, yes.

      TAURUS: Signs point to yes.

      GEMINI: Without a doubt.

      CANCER: Reply hazy, try again.

      LEO: Reply hazy, try again.

      VIRGO: Very doubtful.

      LIBRA: Signs point to yes.

      SCORPIO: Very doubtful.

      SAGITTARIUS: My reply is no.

      CAPRICORN: Signs point to yes.

         

      V. FREAK O' THE WEEK===================

      by Miss Sarah
        
      FREAKY PERFORMERS
      It's a basic human urge, the urge to perform for others. It lives deep inside. Some of us have the guts to indulge this urge without fear of ridicule. Others of us perform the ridiculing.
       
      FLUTE 'N' VEG
      http://people.smartchat.net.au/~flutenveg/
      "From corporate functions to festivals across Australia these finely tuned and sculptured carrot instruments a peel to all ages! Tuned carrot panpipes can be made to create massed harmonies followed by carrot munching."
        
      Yum, who doesn't want to munch carrots that strangers have had their lips and saliva all over? That's definitely fun for all ages.
       
      MR. METHANE
      http://www.mrmethane.com/
      "In my case it all started quite by accident at the tender age of fifteen. I was practising the Full Lotus position encouraged by my Yoga loving sister when I discovered the ability to breath both fore and aft, so to speak. The next day I gave a lunch time performance for a group of friends in the squash courts at Ryles Park County High School, Macclesfield, Cheshire, England. I think twenty rapid fire rasping farts in under a minute was the order of the day, quite an achievement and so popular was it that this became a regular event, swelling my pocket money reserves. A full time career as a performing flatulist was at this stage not on the cards however..."
        
      Hey, what a surprise - Mr. Methane has been featured on the Howard Stern Show!
       
      HARRY AND THE POTTERS
      http://www.eskimolabs.com/hp/index.htm
      "The idea is that the Harry Potter from Year 7 and the Harry Potter from Year 4 started a rock band. And now, no one can stop the wizard rock.  Paul and Joe are brothers. They started this band in the summer of 2002. The legendary tale of their origin goes like this: Joe was planning to have a rock show in the shed in the backyard. People had been invited. But then all the bands cancelled. So that morning, the time was finally appropriate to bust out an idea that had been incubating in Paul's head for some time: Harry and the Potters. That morning, over the course of an hour, Paul and Joe wrote 7 songs. Then, they went out to the shed and practiced them for half an hour. And then, later in the day, they performed them for about 6 people. It was awesome. The place went nuts."  
      Harry and the Potters is on tour this summer- be sure to take your favorite wizard out to see them.
       
      Do you have any suggestions for a Freak O' The Week? If so, send them here: freak@... 
       
      VI. THE NEWS================================
      by Lara Mackey   
       
      GRRL WAYS
      All girl tribute bands are the new knitting circles.
       
      VII. OVERHEARD==============================
       
      THE UGLY AMERICANS
      by Lynda Del Genis
       
      SETTING: Outside Municipal Building, Prague.
      PLAYERS: Two American Toursists.
       
      WOMAN: How do they know?
      MAN: How do they know what?
      WOMAN: How do they know if you speak English?
      MAN: Well, it's their business to know.
       
      Overhear something good? Send it in to the SHANK using this format.
       
      VIII. STUDENT BODY=======================
      by Neil Tobias
       
      My name is Neil Tobias. This column is all about playing in a rock band and LIFTING WEIGHTS!! I also have Hepatitis C. I am new in town so please excuse me if I don't pronounce all your counties correctly. I will always however PRONOUNCE THE TRUTH CORRECTLY!!
       
      LAXATIVES
      Hey Homos!!
      A buddy told me he was losing weight by taking laxatives. FAG!!! Laxatives are normally used when someone has been constipated for a long time and needs to take a shit, and they are ONLY used by chicks. Of course, life would be boring if some issues didn't come up from the abuse of laxatives, and believe me, there are MANY issues that pop up but usually they are between my legs. AWESOME!!!
       
      First, you should know exactly how a laxative works. The common belief is that it will make you "lose weight." So, is this true? Absolutely NOT. A laxative performs its duty (HAHAHAHAHAHAHA) in your colon, not in your stomach and not in your WEE-WEE!! "What is the big deal with that?" you ask. Here is the big deal,you fuck - YOU ARE INTENTIONALLY TRYING TO SHIT YOURSELF!!!! Yup, you read that right. I JUST PRONOUNCED THE TRUTH CORRECTLY!! You may feel as though you have lost weight from these pills, but the only thing you've lost is A CLEAN PAIR OF UNDERWEAR!!!! Within 48 hours of using a laxative the body retains water to make up for all that it has lost, with the exception of your underwear...you need to buy a new pair of those, ASS! You can try washing them but TRUST ME, they will NEVER BE THE SAME!!! You will ALWAYS be insecure in the presence of a black light!
       
      Below is a list of the problems that you will encounter if you begin the treacherous road of laxative abuse:
       
      Smell like shit
       
      Stained underwear
       
      Not caring about things
       
      Bad breath
       
      Confusion when trying to talk to friends
       
      Problems while walking
       
      Loss of intensity
       
      I also found that taking some kind of fiber supplement during and after the weaning DOESN'T DO A FUCKING THING!! For me personally I don't give a shit because I am working on a new studio album for my band Stab Patrol. So far we have all the drums, bass and guitar tracks down and may actually have a featured guest soloist from a VERY famous Baltimore Indy band. I won't say who they are but think numbers and letters. Now that I have you all worked up, I MAKE YOU WAIT AND WANT IT!!!
       
      Later, asses.
       
      IX. GODWATCH=======================
      HAVE YOU HEARD THE GOOOD NEWS? HE IS RISEN!
      JUST LIKE OSTEEN'S BANK STATEMENT!
      Joel Osteen, pastor of Lakewood Church, the largest evangelical church in America (with 30,000 weekly attendants) and a TV ministry broadcast in 100 countries raked in $55 million last year.
      Um, is this revenue tax-free?
       
       
      X. RANDOM FACTOID=======================

      NUMBERS* YOU DON'T SEE IN THE NEWS
      192
      American troops have died in Afghanistan
      1,734 American troops have died in Iraq
      13,000 American soldiers wounded in Iraq
      2,421 Iraqi Security Personnel killed in Iraq
      22,500 Iraqi civilians killed in Iraq
      245 contractors killed in Iraq
      70% of the reconstruction funds for Iraq have been diverted to security
       
      Source: http://www.mydd.com/story/2005/6/24/15254/3581
      *Numbers were gathered on 6/25/05. So they most likely have increased since then, unfortunately.
       
      XI. WHAT THE FUCK======================
       
      CIA DIRECTOR KNOWS WHERE BIN LADEN IS
      So, this begs the question, why the hell haven't we captured him yet? We're willing to overthrow a sovereign government in Iraq on trumped up evidence, but the guy responsible for killing thousands of Americans ... well, we leave him alone? Guess we do have to pass that anti-Flag Burning Ammendment first...
       
      CIA Director Porter Goss:
      "I have an excellent idea of where he is. What's the next question?"
      [...]
      "But when you go to the very difficult question of dealing with sanctuaries in sovereign states, you're dealing with a problem of our sense of international obligation, fair play."
       
      XII. SHANKTV================

      OK GO & THE DITTY BOPS
      Okay, so here are a couple of music videos...
       
      OK GO - A Million Ways (mov)
      http://boss.streamos.com/download/xc37dr2/okgo/amillionways/amillionways_v750.mov
      Just keep in mind when you're watching this, it's 1 consecutive shot. No cuts. No edits. Amazing, huh?
       
      THE DITTY BOPS - Wishful Thinking
      http://www.adriapetty.com/dittybops.htm
      Holy shit, I love the Ditty Bops!
       
       
       
      XIII. RANDOM FACTOID=======================

      OKAY, WE ADMIT IT, WE TORTURE
      Just in case you missed it...
       
      The United States has acknowledged to the UN that there are cases of torture inflicted on prisoners in Afghanistan and in Iraq, as well as on the American base at Guantánamo, a member of the UN's Committee against Torture pronounced Friday, June 24.
       
      […]
       
      Up until now, the United States has always maintained that the abusive treatment inflicted on prisoners at the hands of its Armed Forces could not be considered torture under American law.
       
       
      XIV. WHAT THE FUCK======================
       
      GEORGE BUSH, HIS WHITE HOUSE, KARL ROVE AND KEN MELHMAN CALL AMERICANS TRAITORS
      June 22nd, in New York White House Deputy Chief Of Staff Kar Rove said:
      "Liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers. Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war."
       
      "Conservatives saw what happened to us on 9/11 and said we will defeat our enemies. Liberals saw what happened to us and said we must understand our enemies."
       
      "Has there ever been a more revealing moment this year? Let me just put this in fairly simple terms: Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger. No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals."
       
      Republican Party Chairman Ken Mehlman, said there was no need to apologize because:
      "what Karl Rove said is true."
       
      White House Chief Of Staff Andy Card, on CNN:
      "Karl Rove's speech was a speech that I think reflected some of the rhetoric that a lot of people feel."
       
      A drunk seeming Tom Delay says:
      "That's not slander, that's the truth."
       
      The White House defended Rove's remarks and accused Democrats of engaging in partisan attacks. White House Spokesman Scott McClellan said:
      "[Rove] was talking about the different philosophies and our different approaches when it comes to winning the war on terrorism."
       
      Here's Karl Rove's White House phone number: (202) 456-2369
       
       
      XV. WEATHER FORECAST===================
       
      Okay, so you ever hear people say how accurate those Farmer's Almanacs are at predicting the weather? We're gonna put it to the test in the Shank (since an Aunt gave me one as a gift). Each week we'll be presenting the weather according to The Old Farmer's Almanac 2005. Please note this weather forecast is for the Mid-Atlantic region.
       
      June 23-30: T-storms, then sunny, warm.
      July 1-8: Sunny, then t-storms.
      July 9-16: Sunny, warm.
       
      JULY OVERALL: Temp: 76 degrees (average); precip.: 6-inches (2 inches above average).
       
      XVI. RANDOM FACTOID=======================
       
      REPUBLICANS ARE TOO CONSERVATIVE
      According to a Pew poll:
      38% of Americans believe Republicans are TOO CONSERVATIVE
      35% of Americans believe Democrats are TOO LIBERAL
       
      Where's that mandate? Where's that political capital? The Republicans control the media, and still people feel this way. Wow! Imagine what these numbers would be like if we had a 4th Estate that wasn't a propaganda machine for the Bush Regime.
       
      Remember right after the 2004 election, how the right, bloated like a beast that had just gorged on raw pig, was "kindly" explaining that the problem with the Dems was that they had moved too far left? That they were out of touch with mainstream America? Er... thanks for the advice, but it's Republicans who are the ones out of touch with mainstream American values.
       
      Schiavo? Social Security Privatization? Iraq? Fiscal irresponsibilty? Tax cuts for the rich? Flag Ammendments? No Child Left Behind? Embryonic stem cell research? Energy policy? Global warming? Karl Rove? Dobson? John Bolton? Delay? Dukester Cunningham? Downing Street Memo? GITMO? Abu Ghraib?
       
       
      XVII. WHAT THE FUCK======================

      NOT ONLY ARE LIBERALS RESPONSIBLE FOR 9/11 AND KILLING OUR TROOPS, THEY'RE ALSO TO BLAME FOR PEDOPHILIA
      Commenting on the pedophilia scandal facing the Catholic Church, Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), says:
      "it is no surprise that Boston, a seat of academic, political and cultural liberalism in America, lies at the center of the storm."
       
      Not only is he blaming liberalism for pedophilia, he's also misrepresenting.
       
      The "center of the storm" is really the very Red diocese of Covington, Kentucky, where the Catholic church proposed the largest single sex-abuse settlement in history: $120 million ($80 million would come from insurance policies which fortuitiously included sex abuse, and $40 million from collection plates.)
       
      Ya'll in Pennsyltucky who vote for Santorum to represent you, you do know he lives in Virginia, right?
       
       
      XVIII. AMERICAN LEAGUE STANDINGS============
      For those who follow baseball, but not that closely.
       
      Team        W - L
      Red Sox     45 - 32
      Orioles       43 - 35
      Yankees     39 - 38
      Blue Jays   40 - 39
      Devil Rays   27 - 52
       
      XIX. RANDOM FACTOID=======================

      GUESS WHEN THE SUICIDE ATTACKS IN IRAQ STARTED?
      In its entire history, there was never a documented instance of a suicide attack in Iraq - until, that is, it was "liberated" by the United States.
       
       
      XX. WHAT THE FUCK======================

      LAST THROES CAN, EVIDENTLY, LAST 12 YEARS, AND GET WORSE
      Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld echoed remarks by his advisers in recent months suggesting that the insurgency could last as long as a dozen years and that Iraq would become more violent before elections later this year.
       
      The insurgency in Iraq is "in the last throes," Vice President Dick Cheney says, and he predicts that the fighting will end before the Bush administration leaves office.
       
      From Merriam Webster:
      THROES: 1 : PANG, SPASM (death throes)  (throes of childbirth)
      2 plural : a hard or painful struggle (the throes of revolutionary social change )
       
      Doing my best Rumsfeld here: Is it possible to get a straight answer out of this White House? Who can say? What's really going on in Iraq? Who knows?
       
       
      XXI. GEEK TOOLS========================
       
      SERIF PHOTOPLUS 6.0
      This week's Geek Tools pick is Serif PhotoPlus 6.0. Serif has a lot of free software available for download, but by far the most popular is their PhotoPlus software, and with good reason. They're giving away software that other places (like Adobe) charge anywhere from a hundred bucks to 600 dollars or more to get.
       
      But what is PhotoPlus 6.0? It's graphic manipulation software. In short, it's a working man's Photoshop. When it opens, it a lot of options familiar to anyone who has worked with Photoshop, like the crop tool, the smudge tool, some drawing and fill tools, the layer window, etc. It also has a "deform" tool, which allows you to shrink, enlarge, skew, and rotate the picture without having to take two or three steps. It even includes some filters, like solarize, twirl, and blur and you can add lighting effects or fix red eye problems with the filters as well.
       
      Now it's free, so you're not going to get the full blown experience of photo editing that you'd get with a more expensive product. But on the other hand, most of us are just screwing around with pictures and making a few hackneyed edits to a photo here and there, and don't really need all of the bells and whistles of a commercial program.
       
      So if you work with photos casually, and are looking for a major step up from Paint, give Serif PhotoPlus 6.0 a shot. You can download it from them at http://www.freeserifsoftware.com/software/PhotoPlus/. You have to register the program to unlock it, but that's quick and painless and, again, free.
       
      Comments, suggestions, mac alternatives, general complaints? Need computer software advice? Visit our forum: http://forums.socialblunders.com. Also please feel free to submit suggestions for future columns on the forums as well. It's free!
       
      XXII. RANDOM FACTOID=======================

      EL BUSHO - THE WAR-BRINGER
      Who's responsible for provoking the war in Iraq?
      49% of Americans say George Bush
      44% of Americans say Saddam Hussein
       
       
      XXIII. WHAT THE FUCK======================
       
      BUSH ON EXIT STRATEGY & TIMETABLES
      “Victory means exit strategy, and it’s important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is.” -George W. Bush, 4/9/99:
       
      “I think it’s also important for the president to lay out a timetable as to how long they will be involved and when they will be withdrawn.” -George W. Bush, 6/3/99
       
      Of course, that's when he's criticizing Clinton. When Bush has his own war, he flip-flops.
       
      “It doesn’t make any sense to have a timetable. You know, if you give a timetable, you’re — you’re conceding too much to the enemy.” -George W. Bush, 6/24/05:
       
       
      XXIV. OSAMA CLOCK======================
       
      Number of days it's been since George W. Bush promised he would catch Osama Bin Laden:
      1,383.
       
      It took the U.S. 1,365 days to defeat the nation of Japan after Pearl Harbor was attacked.
       
       
      XXV. ATOMIC PICK======================
      **********************************************************
      ANNOUNCING LULU EIGHTBALL - THE BOOK!
      **********************************************************

      We at Atomic Books have formed our own press to publish books that we
      think should see print, and we've given that press the snappy monicker,
      the ATOMIC BOOK COMPANY.

      While we have several projects in the works, we're thrilled to announce
      that our very first offering is a collection of cartoons by
      alterna-weekly artist and all around swell gal, EMILY FLAKE!

      LULU  EIGHTBALL
      by Emily Flake

      Price: $9.95
      Emily's comics deal with the hangovers and drunken mistakes of life, the
      flab of fat, the self-doubt that comes with living amongst other people,
      smoking and thinking, and the occasional monkey.
      Scheduled to arrive in July. PRE-ORDER NOW, WON'T YOU?
      CLICK HERE FOR MORE: http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/10990.html
       
      also...
      We co-publish SHOCKED & AMAZED with Dolphin Moon Press. Volume 8 is due
      very soon, and here's a look at the cover, by artist Stephen
      Blickenstaff.
       
      Shocked & Amazed! On & Off The Midway Volume 8
      by James Taylor / Kathleen Kotcher

      Price: $19.95
      NOT YET AVAILABLE! Scheduled to arrive in August. Pre-order now! Please
      note that release dates and prices are subject to change.  
      CLICK HERE FOR MORE: http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/10989.html
       
      XXVI. RADIO SHANK================
       
      WEEKLY 10 MP3S
      Okay, I figured since I spend roughly 3 hours every morning going through my blog links, looking for MP3s as well as reading up on current events, it might be fun to list my favorite 10 MP3s I've stumbled across each week (I mean, at least until WTMD or RNR gives me my own radio show).
       
      It's kind of like, if the Shank was a real publication, this would be the free CD that would come with it each week. Most of these MP3s (and WAY more) can be found by going through the "LINKS" section on the Shank Blog (www.mobtownshank.com), but what the hell...
       
      Just click the MP3 link.
       
      THE ORANGES BAND
      Ride The Nuclear Wave (mp3) - http://mp3.insound.com/download.cfm?mp3id=2535
      The World And Everything On It (album) - http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/6313.html
      The new record from one of Baltimore's best bands. Yeah!
       
      STEPHEN MALKMUS & THE JICKS
      Baby C'mon (mp3) - http://www.matadorrecords.com/mpeg/stephen_malkmus/stephen_malkmus_baby.mp3
      Face The Truth (album) - http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/11192.html
      Makes me all irritated in that good way that Pavement used to do.
       
      SPOON
      I Turn My Camera On (mp3) - http://www.matadorrecords.com/mpeg/spoon/spoon_camera.mp3
      Gimme Fiction (album) - http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/11193.html
      Kinda has a Bee Gees meets Franz Ferdinand feel to it, no?
       
      SLEATER-KINNEY
      Entertain (mp3) - http://www.subpop.com/scripts/main/download.php?url=/downloads/free/Entertain308.mp3&mid=308
      The Woods (album) - http://www.atomicbooks.com/products/-/10930.html
      Sounds like someone discovered Blue Oyster Cult.
       
      SUFJAN STEVENS
      The Man Of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts (mp3) - http://www.toolshed-media.com/ts/sufjan-stevens-man-of-metropolis.mp3
      Illinois (album)
      The new installment in the 50 States Project.
       
      SUFJAN STEVENS
      Casimir Pulaski Day (mp3) - http://www.toolshed-media.com/ts/sufjan-stevens-casimir-pulaski-day.mp3
      Illinois (album)
      The 50 States Project is that Stevens is planning to do a record for each state. Can't wait to see what he comes up with for Maryland. Anyway, he already did Michigan.
       
      TILLY & THE WALLS
      Fell Down The Stairs (mp3) - http://www.team-love.com/new/includes/try.php?req=202
      Wild Like Children (album)
      Band names I like, part 1.
       
      SUBURBAN KIDS WITH BIBLICAL NAMES
      Rent A Wreck (mp3) - http://www.labrador.se/mp3/skwbn-rent_a_wreck.mp3
      Hell, they're Swedes. Band names I like, part 2.
       
      DRESSY BESSY
      Who'd Stop The Rain (mp3) - http://anon.salon.speedera.net/anon.salon/mp3s/2005/june/dressy-rain.mp3
      Electrified (album)
      Band names I like, part 3.
       
      THE NEW PORNOGRAPHERS
      Sing Me Spanish Techno (mp3) - http://homepage.mac.com/phantroll/.Public/newpornos_spanishtechno.mp3
      Twin Cinema (album)
      The upcoming release by a band with Neko Case in it. Also, AC Newman, Fancey... actually, New Pornographers are like the new Asia.
       
      XXVII. THE SHANK CALENDAR================
       
      Friday, July 1_____________________
      THE ORANGES BAND
      9PM. Ottobar. Remington, Baltimore.
      2549 N. Howard St.
       
      KARMELLA'S GAME, ASSASSINATE CAESAR, SECOND SATURDAY
      The Talking Head Club. Downtown,Baltimore.
      203 E. Davis St. www.talkingheadclub.com
       
      ROTTEN SHAMBLES, MYRACLE BRAH!, FILTHY ROTTEN SEX MACHINE, CHELSEA GRAVEYARD
      $5.00. The Mojo Room & Lounge. Hamilton, Baltimore.
       
      Saturday, July 2_____________________________
      LONG LIVE DEATH, IN GOWAN RING, NICK CASTRO, TALIBAM
      8:30. $7. The Warehouse Next Door. Washington, D.C.
       
      Sunday, July 3_____________________________
      SOFTBALL
      9:30 a.m. @ Pikesville Middle School. 
      Ya know what you need? Fresh air and sunshine, best thing for a hangover. Get that old throwin' arm back in shape. Don't worry about being any good, chances are, you'll be playing amongst a lot of Pikesville dads, yeah, not the swingingest thing in the world to do, but it is a chance to dust off the ol' glove and all that.  All are welcome. -Steve Messick
       
      Monday, June 4_____________________________
      $2 IMPORTS NIGHT
      Molly's Public House. Remington, Baltimore.
      400 West 23rd Street.
       
      Wednesday, July 6____________________________
      $6 A LB STEAMED SHRIMP NIGHT
      Molly's Public House. Remington, Baltimore.
      400 West 23rd Street.
       
      CASS MCCOMBS, THE DOUBLE, MORE DOGS 
      9PM. Ottobar. Remington, Baltimore.
      2549 N. Howard St.
       
      Thursday, July 7____________________________
      $2 SKYY VODKA DRINKS NIGHT
      Molly's Public House. Remington, Baltimore.
      400 West 23rd Street.
       
      ENGLISH MARK'S FUNKY/PUNKY/REGGAE
      Frazier's On The Ave. Hampden, Baltimore.
      919 W. 36th St.
       
      XXVIII. THE SKAG=============================
       
      7/8 LANDSPEEDRECORD, THE EXPOTENTIALS/UPTHEEMPIRE/THE EXPANDING MAN
      9PM. $7. The Talking Head. Downtown, Baltimore.
      203 Davis St. www.talkingheadclub.com
       
      7/8 FASCIST FASCIST, THE MUDDLES
      The Sidebar. Downtown, Baltimore.
      218 E. Lexington St. www.sidebartavern.com
       
      7/8 SNEAKER PIMPS E

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