Thursday, March 31, 2011

Zombie Octopus Island II

It wrapped its coils around the struggling man, drawing him to its beak.  It tore into the man's belly, sucking in great loops of delicious flesh.  The sea was perfumed by the feast's spreading plume.  The bubbles from the man's head ceased in seconds.

For so many years it had lurked in the depths, gazing at the hulls of boats above, motes in the brilliance of the overlight.  What were these beings that touched God's face and splashed in the shallows?  What great flagella drove their vessels, lashing the surface of the deep?  For so many years it had hidden from them, mottling its surface to match its surroundings, spreading flat or clenching tight into a knot of silent fear, moving ever deeper.  For so many years it had worshipped them.

Then it had drunk the new ink.  The gods themselves had spilled it from the shine-shell in the cold trench.  And, having drunk this irresistible fluid, a new awareness dawned, even as its tentacles started to rot from the workings of the ink.

Men were not gods.  They were prey.

--Steve Kilian

When Charm Fails

Mark Twain, Karl Marx, and Socrates: At It Again

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Obama Jokes

What does Obama say when he gets the power to become invisible? “Let me be clear.”

What is Obama’s favorite Keith Richards song? “Make No Mistake.”*

How does Obama admit that, truly, he is neither Christian nor Muslim, but something far more Pagan? “Yes, Wiccan.”

Why did Obama cross the road? To get to the middle.

Some sort of knock knock joke with bombs or rocks or something.

How do you know Obama wasn’t born in this country? Because he’s black. Racist? Yes. Yes it is. NPR guy was right.

So Obama, Jackie Robinson and Sammy Davis Jr. go into a bar. The bartender says, “Mr. President, it’s an honor to have you in this establishment, but even you can’t bring two rotting corpses into a bar.”

--Dan Kilian

*You don't know that song? Check it out! Oh, and he says "Let me be clear" and "Make no mistake" a lot. Like, every speech.


The Moon Landing That Might Have Been
Milky Sputum: Dan and Pat do Siren Fest

Monday, March 28, 2011

Lucky The Third Time: The Obama Doctrine

The nation waits for Obama to lay out his doctrine, to explain why we’re at war in Libya. Well wait no more! We’ve got an advance transcript of tonight’s big speech.

Hail bold warriors of the mighty War Republic! U.S.A. number one!

As you know, the other day I got us into Middle East war number three, and this time there’s no way bad stuff will happen. Let me be clear: this whole thing in Libya will be over in days, not weeks. Years maybe, but definitely not weeks.

Now I know a lot of you are saying, “Didn’t we elect this guy to get us OUT of wars?” Well jump on an octopus tentacle, because you’re a sucker! I was also elected to lead a progressive green revolution save the economy as well as roll back the extreme tactics of the Bush administration, and instead I’ve passed tax-cuts for the rich and trashed Miranda rights. So why shouldn’t I go for a war too?

The good news is, we’re kicking ass! Seriously, Qaddafi’s an asshole. He was going to kill a bunch of people, and that never happens in the Middle East, so we had to stop it. This is a humanitarian rescue mission, and make no mistake about it: that mission shall not change. Also, our side in the civil war is winning, and Qaddafi has got to go.

I know a lot of hay has made about how women changed my mind about intervening in Libya. Rush Limbaugh called me pussy-whipped. But consider this. One of those women was my Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. She was initially opposed to intervention as well, until she was convinced it was the right thing to do. So you might wonder, is there such a thing as pussy on pussy whipping? Well, after conducting a Google search, I can assure you that there is.

So what would you have me do? Sit back as Qaddafi goes house to house, killing anyone who looks like they might not love dictatorship? What would my critics be saying then?

And yeah, I know Bahrain and the Ivory Coast also have despots using violence to cling to power, but come on. We have a naval base in Bahrain, (which is, yes, named after the people’s crankily stoic embrace of drought), so while it might be convenient to attack, the odds of them letting us keep the base goes down. We’re also concerned that the Shiite majority might be influenced by Iran, an evil theocracy sworn to opposing the United States. We’d much rather have Bahrain under the umbrella of Saudi Arabia, the country that gave us Wahhabism. Oh, and Ivory Coast? Most Americans think that’s a brand of soap, not a country, so how can we go there?

The newsflash here is that opportunism and hypocrisy are part and parcel of conducting foreign policy. You can’t have opportunism without the opportunity. When the Arab league asked for a no-fly zone, the opportunity was there to intervene in Libya. Likewise, without hypocrisy, we’d have to be in eight or nine wars, as opposed to three, not counting Pakistan, Yemen and Venezuela. Oh wait, forget I said anything about Venezuela. That’s for the second term!

In closing, remember that we avoided a bloodbath in Libya. We stood by in Rwanda and Bosnia, and we regretted it. Not this time. I expect that by the time the rebels have won and the reprisal killings get under way our media will have moved focus onto something else!

Thank you, and may God Bless America, and may God Bless our sacred wars, especially official wars one and three. Two still really sucked, but I sort of ended it, sort of. Media, please keep ignoring the protests and violence in Iraq! We’ll be out of there in years, not centuries.

--Dan Kilian

44 Rings Up 43

End of Conflict

Friday, March 25, 2011

Mid East Roundup (or Round Down)

Having trouble keeping the turmoil in the Middle East straight? Confused? Horrified? Worried that idealistic movements for democracy will result in mass bloodshed, theocracy, and most importantly, an big uptick in gas prices? Here’s a primer that will make you feel as if your cable plan included Al Jazeera. The Obama administration has been accused of hypocrisy and inconsistency by Republicans; neither term would apply to people who called Bush bashing treasonous.


Lucky the third time? The U.S. is tangentially involved in what is now a NATO operation. Actually, the duties in this conflict are divided. NATO is in charge of being called “in charge” while the U.S., France (Sarkozy is the most gung-ho on this, probably because he’s got an election coming and someone told him there are gypsies in Libya), and Britain are in charge of actually bombing the hell out of Qaddafi’s forces. Qaddafi got off the ropes and was about to go door to door killing people in Benghazi before we intervened. Much ado has been made of the role female advisers—the “Valkyries,” Susan Rice, Samantha Power, and Hillary Clinton—had in bringing the Obama administration to war. Of course, if you’re less interested in the validity of life-and-death decisions than in who has tits, you’re probably an asshole like Rush Limbaugh or an “asshole” like Maureen (“I’m Not Saying It, I’m Just Saying Other People Are Saying It”) Dowd. Hey, Maureen Dowd, if my name sounded like a drag-queen pun I’d be kinder to the sisters, but I’m insecure.

We’re taking sides in a civil war with a loose, rag-tag (and I mean rag-tag—they actually play tag with rags) coalition of democracy advocates, disaffected military men, and guys who think Qaddafi’s Jewish. The rebels have adapted the protest tactics that worked for the public in Tunisia and Egypt, combining a more militant revolutionary edge with the pacifists’ ability to get their asses severely kicked. Best-case scenario: we create another Kurdistan. Worst-case scenario: we actually win.


[caption id="" align="alignright" width="200" caption="What a crappy mustache! "][/caption]

Is President Bashar Al-Assad a hard-line strongman who can ride the tiger, or an ophthalmologist with a crappy mustache which makes you just want to punch him? I mean, give Saddam Hussein some credit (Oh, and by the way, if we’d just waited for this we could have skipped the whole thousands of dead American soldiers and years of suck. Just saying), he was an evil man, but at least he could rock a mustache. I say Bashar goes down!


President Ali Abdullah Saleh has a better mustache than Bashar. He’s going down too, and then the shit is really going to hit the fan.

Saudi Arabia

What a bunch of assholes.


An oil spigot connected to a U.S. army base soaked with the blood of the innocent, whose deaths we ignore. It’s Realpolitik!


There hasn’t been much reporting lately from the country that started it all, when a poor street vendor named Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire to protest of the confiscation of his wares by the state. In a dramatic turnaround, the burnt corpse of Bouazizi has been elected president. Ministers do his bidding, interpreting his whims based on which way the ashes of his body land as it disintegrates.


Good-looking people! It seems that the Muslim Brotherhood is poised to do well in the coming elections. Religious zealots gaining political influence, possibly applying their narrowminded bigotries to what should be a free and open society. Good thing that can’t happen here!


Even better looking? Iran seemingly crushed their uprising earlier this year, but mayyybe…Iran is different from these other countries in that it is ruled by assholes who are Shi’ite (a term ebonic in origin) as opposed to Sunni. The difference between the Sunnis and Shi’ites is that the Sunnis crack their eggs on this side of the egg and Shi’ites crack it on the other. I stole that joke from someone. You can actually get away with typing it Shiite, but then I can’t do my lame ebonic joke.


No, I’m sick of this. I’m done.

--Dan Kilian

44 Rings Up 43

Soup of the Day: Persian Pessimism and Rape


Thursday, March 24, 2011

New K-Word: Gilbert

Gilbert Gottfried was fired as the voice for the AFLAC duck for making tame jokes on Twitter about the tragic events in Japan. This inspired our latest K-word:

gilbert: – v., 1. to make light of a tragedy as a source of amusement prior to the socially acceptable interval after said tragedy has elapsed.

2. To imitate a duck for money

3. To get more publicity for being fired than for getting the job

Example sentence: "I don't want to gilbert, but I have a great bit about Nate Dogg fucking Elizabeth Taylor in hell."

--Steve Kilian

--Dan Kilian*

* Editor's note: Yes this sterling piece of writing required TWO writers! And yes, no one cared about this even back when anyone cared. I still like the word!

Also yes (third yes) though his work is pretty damned spotty, I do think this bit is funny from GG.

Back From The Past

The Video: Last Trip To The Well

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Monday, March 21, 2011

44 Rings Up 43

“♪Take my breath away♫”

Dubya here!

43, this is 44

Chewbaccarama, is that you?

That’s Commander in CHIEF Chewbaccarama to you!

Aye Aye Commanderbama! How’s it going?

It’s going GREAT! I am kicking ASS!

Been a while since we talked. What’s up?

The dust in Qaddafi’s compound! That’s what’s up!

I saw that! Blowing up Qaddafi! A classic Gipper move. You always did like Reagan.

So I figure you’re one of the few people who know what this feels like. I mean, I can talk to Bill but he’s…

An asshole.

Exactly. And there’s 41, but he’s so…so…

So damn serious about it!


He’s all stern and whatnot, like he didn’t even enjoy himself.

Yes! And while it’s serious…

It is…it is…

It also KICKS ASS! I never really got that till now. I mean these other wars I inherited.

Good wars, but not fresh.

This one is all mine! Now I now how…JAZZED it makes you feel! I mean, Iraq…

Hoo-boy! Worms from the can!

And Afghanistan….

Afghanistan sucks.

Afghanistan SUCKS! There’s nothing there!

Rummy said it. No targets. You’ve got to go into Pakistan to hit anything in Afghanistan. But you’re hitting stuff now! You didn’t even consult Congress.

Fuck Congress.

Fuck Congress. Dithering do nothings. Now you’re The Decider!

I’m The Decider! Deciding all over Qaddafi’s ass! I love it!

Yeah, it’s fun at first, but, I’ve got to warn you, these things can become a headache.

Don’t worry. We’re only doing the feel-good stuff. No boots on the ground.

Keep those boots out. Just…sometimes…it gets complicated.

We’re keeping it simple-Simon. Just a no fly zone.

And a no drive-zone, whatever that is.

Right, right. Kind of like 41 did over Kurdistan. Either everything becomes static, and Democratic Libya sort of congeals around him, or someone does the right thing and pops Qaddafi.

Someone really does need to pop ol’ Q-bert. But then you’ve got to watch out for what they call a “power vacuum.”

If Q-bert goes down we’ll hold elections. I see why you’re concerned, George, but this is nothing like Iraq.

I guess you’re right. I mean, in Iraq they had all these tribal differences and it got to be all about reprisals and that got real out of hand. Doubt something like that could happen in Libya.


Anyhoo, congratulations. Glad you’re having fun.


Hey! Chewbaccarama! Don’t let me rain on your parade! Enjoy yourself.

Thanks, man.

And you know, I’m proud of you. We don’t always see eye to eye, but I’m proud of you. You know…I’m proud of our country for electing you. I know it’s not all about race, but I want you to know…I like black people!

Of course you do!

It’s just…ever since Kanye said that thing about me…

Kanye is a jackass.

You said it, Chewie! His new album is pretty kick-ass, though, I have to admit. “No one man should have all that POWER!”

I wouldn’t know. All I listen to is country these days.

It’s the best music. America’s music!

America is NUMBER ONE! All right, 43, gotta go.

You go 44. Do me proud!

--Dan Kilian


Vicious Viking


Friday, March 18, 2011

Interview with Rebecca Black

With her video “Friday” having gotten 16 million hits, Rebecca Black is an official Youtube sensation. Everyone seems to have an opinion about her, much of it negative! We’ve been very lucky to have gotten to speak with her to get her perspective on her own phenomenal success.


What do you think about the viral success of your video “Friday?”

Obviously it’s impressive. It really succeeded beyond anyone’s expectations. We expected more of a cult following, so the video getting this many hits is a little hard to wrap one’s mind around. It really changes the parameters.

How so?

Well the levels of feedback from a core of interested viewers is quite different from that of a mass audience, and the types of feedback we’ve been getting is different than with a smaller audience to say the least. It definitely puts us in touch with a more representative slice of the public.

How are you taking the negative feedback? Some people can be quite cruel.

We always expected that some people would take the video literally, and anyone who did is going to think “this song isn’t very good,” and then there are those who see it as a smart satire of a bankrupt cultural landscape. What my associates and I are really interested in are the grey areas, where people are unsure of what’s going on. That’s why there’s such an enforced sense of wholesomeness juxtaposed with insinuations of decadence. We want to make people uncomfortable. Likewise, the incongruities of race and age in the segment with Pato.

Pato is the rapper?

Pato Wilson is an author and performance artist. It’s comical to actually think of him as a “rapper” though technically that’s what he’s doing. Having Pato, a much older man interacting with a young white girl was another attempt at incongruity. He was pretty uncomfortable with the concept until we’d delineated his role as being in total isolation, in his car. We wanted to make a statement about racial ghetto-ization in pop culture, though the age angle seems to have been more resonant with the public at large, which is interesting.

What do you mean by the “insinuations of decadence?”

Well, I’m thirteen, so we knew everything would have to be very subtle, or we’d get the wrong kind of blow-back. Still it was important that interspersed throughout this paean to banality that there be references to “partying partying,” and euphemistically “sitting in the back seat.”

What kind of partying do you do?

When my friends and I are experimenting with drugs, we like to get in a controlled situation and do PCP. It’s not in vogue, so there’s less of a danger of addiction, as there’s not a regular dealer. We also like to do obscure hallucinogens, like Igobaine, for the same reason. It really is, all irony aside, important to party responsibly.

Are you in any relationships right now?

For the sake of what we’re trying to do artistically and as a social science experience, it’s important that the persona I’m embodying in this video not be sexualized from within, though obviously there’s going to be a sexual framework imposed from the feedback loops. It would really contaminate the study if I made any comments of my own in that regard.

So what’s next for Rebecca Black?


--Dan Kilian

July 4th, 1777

I Passed, But Then I Came Back: Five and a Half Song Review

Wednesday, March 16, 2011



Editors Note: Warning kids, this one gets a little raw.

battering his teeth with a closet rod, knocking out a few and cracking off the rest, then saying fuck it and taking a hacksaw to his gums and cutting through the roots to show the motherfucker what happens and then heating a coathanger on the stove and laying it on his eyelids until it sticks so he can peel them back and nip the corners with some wirecutters and then tear the whole thing off like a hangnail, but neater, and there are the goggling orbs all twitching back and forth and he can just touch them with his dirty thumb as easy as pie but we'll come back to that later first he needs to sew his buttcheeks together to stop that spray and while he's down there make sure his nutsack stays tight to his thigh but what's this aaah a kneecap that needs to be released with a few quick cuts and there the patella is skittering across the floor like an air hockey puck that will bash his knuckles in the basement where he used to roleplay in the arena meaning alone but no matter because the staple gun is empty and he can just dig and dig through those eyes and feel the pop when the back of the orbit gives way and then he's into the good stuff, cutting his thumbs on the way through and he's in in in and that motherfucker will never be more than a disposal problem and he's got enough cats to take him out of here by the spoonful so it's OVER

--Steve Kilian

The Great Defeat in Georgia

Our Top 20 Hits

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Loneliest Blacksmith

Sometimes when I'm forging a cursed blade for combating the forces of the Overlight, I ask myself, "What is it all for?" I quench the black steel in fetal blood, fill the graven runes with manbane resin, wrap the grip with strips of skin, and still I feel empty inside.

Sure, the hordes need weapons to destroy the humans, and this protects our subrealm from being purged from the material plane of existence, but all of this seems very abstract.  How many talon guards can I make before I lose my mind?

Clang, clang, clang.  It doesn't mean anything.

This wasn't what I looked forward to doing when I was a larva.  But sometimes it seems like those dreams get sloughed off and eaten along with your first carapace.  At least there's a pint or two of spoiled ichor at the end of the day.

But still I can't wait for retirement -- which seems like an eternity away.

--Steve Kilian

Three Variations On the Same Scatological Joke

Adventures in Filing

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Michelangelo On a Camping Trip

Writer’s note: While I have done extensive research into the customs of Renaissance society, I do not claim 100% accuracy in this historical depiction of the artist Michelangelo on a camping trip. It’s conceivable that some anachronisms may occur.

There is a town in North Ontario…

I’ve got to go piss.

Me too!

I’ll watch the fire. All my memories are there…and in my mind….helpless helpless….

Ha ha ha ha!

It’s not really.

What’s going on?

Liam Neeson, meet Milton Berle!


He thinks…

You guys are both enormous!


I’ve seen you both! I’m never introducing you to my girlfriend again!

Oh come on!

Seriously, you should both be in porn!

I don’t think so.

No, you’re right. It sucks. They have to pose for hours on end. Unfortunately, those porn guys are all I can get as models for my nudes. Throws everything out of proportion.

How do you mean?

Well, they’re all packing walruses, like you guys. If I made a David or an Adam with a huge putz like that, people would think I’m some kind of perv. So I’ve got to redo the schlong to regular, human size.

Oh…so that’s…

I just have to look down. So that’s me up on the Sistine Chapel.


Ha ha ha! I’ve got to piss AGAIN! These beers are going right through me! I’ll be right back.

See you!

Don’t get lost!




Do you think we should tell him?

Never. He should never know.

Don’t you think he’ll figure it out someday?

Not from me. And not from you.

Probably the right thing to do.

Definitely. It would crush him.


Now get me a beer. And let’s make some s’mores.

--Dan Kilian

Khomeini and Khamenei: A Dialogue

The Michelangelo Project

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Octopus Zombie Island!

Octopus Zombie Island!:  A Film Treatment


Alien spacecraft crashes in the Carribbean.  Pilot ejects.  Alien virus in the pilot (which caused the crash) leaches into the environment – slowly.  Over the years the local witch doctors refine zombie powder from the virus and do the whole zombie thing, as memorialized in popular literature.  One bloodline of witchdoctors protects and passes down the pilot's gear (alien artifacts) which have some power over the zombies.

Offshore drilling rig hits the main ship which is at the bottom of the ocean.  Buckets of the alien zombie virus are released from the ship's medical supply stores, which have degraded and mutated in the hundreds of years of its watery isolation.  Oil and virus leaks into the ocean, and make their way to the packed beaches of the not-Virgin-for-long Islands.  Teenage kids have sex and are then infected, tearing each other to pieces.  A giant zombie octopus comes up from the depths.  All hell breaks loose.  The oil companies chopper out of Dodge.  Local police are overwhelmed.  Cruise ships collide and the hapless occupants are thrown into waters infested with sharks, zombies, and zombie-sharks.  A beachfront wedding goes waaay wrong.

A small group of people run to the hills, pursued by zombies, zombie-monkeys, zombie-snakes, zombie-crabs, and the like.  The group consists of an environmental watchdog group geologist ("The thing is, CaribOil was actually doing everything right.") that happens to be a smoking hot chick, a newlywed couple, the couple's best man who secretly desires the bride, a local cop who is a reasonable match for the geologist, and a couple local kids who know where all the weed grows.  They enter into forbidden witchdoctor territory and are nearly killed, but then it turns out that the attacking witchdoctor family is actually protecting them from the giant zombie octopus that has crawled up the mountain.

Along the way these things happen, not necessarily in this order:

The best man's treachery endangers them!

The best man gets his comeuppance!

The lovable stoner locals are killed, sad.

The honeymooners have sex and are killed!

The geologist and the cop have sex and live!

The witchdoctor gives them all some crazy weed laced with alien blood.

A zombie monkey talks!  It says, "fuuuuck youuuuu."

The alien spacecraft explodes, taking the oil rig with it!

An alien medic-robot is torn apart by a zombie squid.

The heroes are caught on a rope bridge with zombies coming from both sides!

The cop runs out of ammunition.

The geologist explains that she knows her way around dynamite from doing seismic testing.

The witchdoctor sacrifices himself to lure all of the zombies into an unfinished soccer stadium that can be collapsed onto the zombies, trapping them long enough for them to be burned.

The keys to the oil rig are in the building with the zombies!

Nobody knows how to fly the old chopper!

"Now all a' sudden you wan' know how to make Voodoo.  It's typical, isn't it, the white man all a' sudden need ever' t'ing right quick…." This while the zombies are approaching!

A zombie-bird looks down on a fresh new uninfected island from up on high.

--Steve Kilian

My Secret Life as an Iranian Proxy Server

The Cargo