and the Live Sex Show
Panama Red Plays Roosendaal
to Amsterdam, Buffy
Comes Home to Christmas in the US of A
Nashville, TN, December 26, 2001
Well, I got back here to Nashville with ALL my little extended unclear
family on Christmas Eve. Nashville Airport was almost deserted.
The flight we came in on from Philly had about 14 passengers on
a big old 737-300. By the time we got to Nashville we had been traveling
in one form or another for about 20 hours. Got the kids to bed in
a motel here and Patty and I came to stay in the Sweetheart Penthouse
at the Captain Midnight Hilton.
I had had a letter from
my daughter in Connecticut telling me that patriotism seemed to
be up about 400 points, but it didn't prepare me for the actuality
of seeing America On A Wartime Footing. In the Captain's condo complex
alone there are about 20 huge American flags and various other red
white and blue motifs being used this year as a backdrop for the
usual Yuletide decorations. Went to Walgreen's today, the only thing
open except of course for the Holy Bible Factory Outlet out by the
This IS the South, I
was reminded, though why the Bible Factory Outlet would be open
even on Christmas Day must remain forever a mystery. I am not given
to hanging around Bible factories asking questions.
Anyway I went to Walgreen's
to buy some things I had missed in the Netherlands and was reminded
again of how many of my fellow countrymen are more than somewhat
rotund...personally I blame just about every problem we have as
a country, from the rotundity of more than fifty percent of us to
the current war, on the automobile. But other than getting rid of
cars altogether, I have no solution...because since we do not have
a flat country like the Netherlands, I ain't about to be pedaling
no bicycle up no hill dragging MY little rotund butt, either, so
I can sympathize. As a matter of fact, one of the first things my
unclear family has to do, after acquiring a place with a roof and
a heating system, is, you guessed it, get a car, because you can't
get from point A to point B without one.
I am, predictably I
suppose, cynically amused at how the War has been co-opted to sell
more stuff that we don't need for money that we don't have. GM,
they of the huge bailout, have a new slogan, something like "Let's
Get America Rolling Again!!", meaning of course that the best
way of doing that is to run out and put ourselves in indentured
servitude for another five years. But it is very attractive: from
now until March or sometime, we can buy a GM product for 0% interest.
How are they able to
do that? Maybe the billion-dollar cushion that yourgovernment and
mine GAVE these Captains of Industry, these wizards of finance and
manufacture, has something to do with Getting America Rolling Again.
Here's what a billion dollars looks like: $1,000,000,000.00.
Here's what a billion
dollars divided by the approximately 300 million loyal Americans
looks like: $3.33. Well, that's not much. Right. $3.33 for every
man, woman and child in the country to GM. Then there's the 800
million dollars ($800,000,000.00) that went to Ford, $2.66 apiece,
and of course the 1.2 billion ($1,200,000,000.00) that went to IBM,
which works out to a nice even number, $4.00, for each of us. Hell,
that's only ten bucks each, a small price to pay to Get America
Rolling Again. For those prigs out there, I realize that I might
have gotten the GM and Ford figures turned around, but the numbers
are still the same.
Oh, yeah: the industry
whose business could conceivably have been actually hurt by the
events of 911, that is, the airlines, received $66.66 from each
of us. The VERY DAY AFTER 911, thanks to the quick-thinking efforts
of airline lobbyist, Mrs Senator Tom Daschle.
I suppose that when
the other CEOs saw the airlines lining up at the corporate welfare
trough, they figured what the hey, it's the patriotic thing to do.
I was thinking about putting my little publishing company, Panalama
Music, forward for a couple of hundred thou at least to Get America
Tapping Its Foot Again. That would only work out to about 6 cents
apiece. But there were some pretty sharp elbows and large lowered
shoulders in black suits at the feeding frenzy already. I'm surprised
that a lot of small businesses didn't follow the lead of the corporate
Upholsterers could have
put in for some bucks to Get America Sitting Again. Serta, Sealy,
and Simmons could have requested a bailout to help Get America Sleeping
Again. Let's Get America Fishing Again. Let's Get America Playing
with Those Little Pegboard Games in Truckstops Again. Hell, we'd
all get rich.