Friday, December 2, 2011

Spear Hunting

    In these great United States, in my own home state of New York, it is somehow illegal to hunt if your weapon of choice is a spear. Let me be clear: you can kill an animal with a gun or bow, but in this day and age you can't even spear hunt if you want. What is this noise? Why can this all-American past time only be done with guns and bows? I absolutely feel this is one law we do not need and I'll tell why.
    I don't care much for hunting myself. I can't really see any joy to be had in squatting in a 'tent' made of camouflage netting at 6 AM and luring helpless animals to their death. I especially say helpless, because of the use of guns and bows by the hunter. The deer might be 75 ft away from the thing that kills then and they'd never even realize. I'm sure that hunting enthusiasts would laud the ignorance as compassion, that at least the animal didn't suffer having to run for his life from a killer he could see coming. I, alternatively, don't even see the sport in it.
    I understand the concept of hunting for sport, and that the enjoyment comes from acting on long-obsolete instincts to succeed so completely over another being. They are very primal emotions some people are just more in touch with. However, wouldn't the thrill, the adrenaline rush that comes from that hunter-gatherer mentality be amplified if you could rush up and fight in melee combat with a spear? Or even thrown from a short distance? That would be true skill, man truly exerting his higher primate brain over lesser mammels. Trophies shot with a gun seem hollow to me. With a spear-hunting scenario theres even the risk the animal might hurt you. Risk, to me, is what makes the reward worth it. Can you imagine needing real skill to bring home a nice trophy? Stalking, stealth, speed, agility, strength, the ability to think on your feet. If you fail, not only do you leave sans trophy, you might very well get a hoof in the jaw or claw scars across the beer belly. That might be real sport. Not drinking beer with some buddies far earlier than people should be imbibing while making a lawn chair bow under you and occassionally looking up at the salt lick on the tree to see if there's a 20-pointer that'd look great in the cabin.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

And Your Blinker Is Still On

     I know it's trivial, but it's an issue that wears on me nigh every day, certainly every day I drive. I try not to rage too much on the road, but inconsiderate, blissfully unaware drivers grind toturously at the corners of my thoughts. One major element of driving in particular that so many people seem to struggle with, is merging and switching lanes. Something happens when people, especially in any kind of traffic, need to change lanes. Common sense breaks down, and one person often inconvenience several people, sometimes dozens in a chain reaction, because they act without any simple foresight for how their actions will affect those around them.
     The place I see problems arise is when someone needs to get over at the last minute, and they jump on the brakes. If you fucked up, and that same familiar exit you get off at every single bloody day came up quicker than you were expecting, you should do those around you the favor of moving ass out of the way as quickly as possible. I may not think highly of the moron who runs screaming across four lanes to the exit at the last minute, but at least he didn't fuck with my shit and make me brake. When people slow down, because their dumb ass didn't think two little stinking minutes ahead and get over before they're about to miss their exit, we all suffer!! I KNOW, I know, it really shouldn't matter that much, and I usually just let the scummy jerk over, but it's your spacey mentality that starts traffic jams, it undoubtedly is.
     The other cretins who drive more oblivious than Helen Keller at the Pink Floyd laser show, come up at on-ramps. It's the "oh what a lovely day for a drive in the motorcar" lollygagging, lackadaisical simpletons who merge onto the highway, but they AREN'T GOING HIGHWAY SPEEDS. They give you a whole ramp to get up to speed, and I will be god-damned if you are going to make me accomodate your ineptitude by having to brake. I know the big car sounds scary when you are accelerating up the ramp, but you're on a timer. In a nutshell, open your eyes, and turn your head, your whole head, not just that quick mirror check, and see how many fucking people you are going to piss off when merging and lane-changing like bored sloth jacking off.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Oh, Is That All?

   When I first heard word that there was an Internet censorship bill before congress, my thoughts turned to the darkest, most revolting corners of the 'net. And in defense of freedom of expression and thought, I was planning out a blog post toeing the gray areas of our First Amendment. I thought maybe kiddie porn sites, or prostitution under the guise of an escort service. When I started poking into it, I was floored. Piracy?? Media-swapping? That's what they're considering allowing broad censorship of the web for? I recognize the intent, and from a purely legal standpoint, the end result is certainly clear and right: to stop information piracy and protect intellectual property. However, I absolutely do not see how the ends justify the means in this case.
      What I see when I look at this bill is a gang of miserly lawyers and record company CEOs who want to be even richer coercing our government to use a blowtorch to kill a ant. Or to be fair, millions of ants. However an exterminator uses a very guided, surgical approach to remove ants, not burn down the house. The government hasn't been able to effectively stop individuals from pirating music, so they are lashing out at the mode of piracy: the websites. Would they also suggest that boatmakers and weapons manufacturers be liable for what Somalian pirates are doing in North Africa? People are the ones breaking laws and pirating music, not the websites themselves. The bill would allow websites to be sued or taken down if their subscribers are suspected of pirating media through their site.
     As usual, the big corporations will remain largely out of danger and the biggest casualities would be the smaller, less popular sites with less means for legal defense. The government and lawyers will truly be shooting the messenger on this one, due to their own ineffectiveness at stopping piracy from the actual individual people copying music. Media piracy is illegal and if the lawyers and companies with claims to the media want to take their own action thats fine. But this kind of commissioned legislation creates far too much collateral damage. There is an answer to preventing piracy, but this is absolutely not it. This seems to be still another another case of government over-action in response to the lobbying of the wealthy that will hurt more innocent people than it helps. I don't know how many more ways I can say it: the ends don't justify these means.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ass-isi Institute

     I was driving around Rochester earlier this month, and I saw a sign for a place, and the sign and name intruiged me. It was called The Assisi Institute of Rochester, and the symbol on the sign was similar to the OM symbol from Indian and Dharmic religions. I dearly love this, the information age, because I was very quickly able to find the rocwiki and homepage of this Assisi Institute on my Driod. And it sounded nice, as I read through, I found that their message, as they say it, is "Eastern Philosophy and Western Mysticism" which made me pause, I wasn't really sure what they were referring to by "Western Mysticism" because generally I don't associate anything from the West as 'mystical' in any way, at least when compared to the East. I feel like the most 'mystical' we get here in the West involves drinking the special Kool-Aid.
     But I kept reading, and throughout the first paragraph, they used the word 'God' a surprising number of times, for an organization that focuses primarily on Kriya Yoga. Finally, in the third paragraph, they were willing to admit that when they say 'Western Mysticism,' what they mean is Jesus-Yoga, or as they say "a special emphasis on Christian mysticism," whatever that means. I'm a relatively jaded soul with regards to Christianity, so naturally I wanted to know how Christianity could possibly add any kind of occult or arcane aspect to YOGA. I really wanted to know who could possibly think Christianity was more mystical than Eastern meditative religious lifestyles. Thus, I went to their website,, to try to find some clarity, and their specific page "Christian Mysticism" and it was blank! Every other page at least had some small blurb, but the mysticism page was emptier than a church during football. They did however, have a plethora of information about the fact that they operate on and encourage donations, as well as their plans to expand. Which really seems to confirm my cynicism toward anything Jesus related that won't admit it's actually just another church.
    What really makes me want to 'cast the first stone' right through their fucking stained-glass windows, is that they can't just be up front about their Jesus slanting. In the information about the Assisi Institute, it was halfway though the third paragraph before the Christian bullshit was revealed. It really feels like a scammer, where you go and listen to a presentation that promises you can make $1000 a week working from home, and then you go and in the last five minutes they 'reveal' that it's Vector knife sales.
     I then waxed curious about the 'Assisi' from the title, I looked up more about it, and it refers to Saint Francis of Assisi, from the Franciscan order of monks. Which to me, once again I feel the tugging of wool down over people's eyes. If you wanted to identify with those monks, the word "Franciscan" is far better known than "Assisi" and would be a more straight-forward, genuine title. Instead they pulled out the much less recognizable word to ally themselves with the teachings of a monk who preached "To follow the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ and to walk in his footsteps." If you believe in following Jesus, but you want to do yoga too, that's fine, just call it a Church and offer yoga classes. Don't lure people in with the promise of mysticism and enlightenment, and then snake in with the Christian dreck.