I went back to Vibrant Walgreen’s to get some pills to assuage the muscular aches I got from sleeping, or from bringing in heavy bags on Saturday, or just by sitting at the damned machinery all weekend. I also wanted some peanuts, since I eat a lot of peanuts. A lot. It’s my only snack. No chips, no crackers - just nuts. Diet thing, which just happens to coincide with a love of nuts. Walgreens has a Rewards Member deal from time to time on their vast array of nuts, and today it was a large bag pickle-dusted cashews for $4.00. Given the high price of cashews, I blought one.

Not two? No; they might be awful. If they are good I will go back and procure additional cashews. It's only four blocks away, and gives me an excuse to visit the empty beauty of Gaviidae Commons.

I got the pills, generic, of course. If I wanted to buy a second one I could get it for half price, because I am a Member and should be Rewarded. Eh. Something depressing about saying hell yeah, I'm stocking up on this because I know I'm going to be hurting in the Future Time. Fifty pills ought to be enough. But what if Russia sets off an EMP and everyone riots and all the painkillers are gone? You're going to kick yourself. Right, right, but I refuse to use that hypothetical as a basis for every action. Once a year I think "better stock up," and I end up with metal cylinders of bad coffee in the storage room and a plastic tub of Lasagna that's shelf-stable unti 2037.

Okay, get two. Whoever said DAMMIT, WE HAVE ENTIRELY TOO MUCH PAIN MEDICATION? No one. Off to the checkout.

There it was over the counter, the God of the Cigarettes, taunting me: Shaq with the red nose.

I’ll be damned if I’m not going to take a picture of it now, just because of what happened last week. In front of me, an old lady with a woolen cap, unidentifiable. No one behind me to start screaming HE TOOK A PICTURE OF YOU like last time. Tap the camera app . . . aw, damn, now there’s a guy behind me in line. I turn to see if he’s going to yell.

The guy literally had a camera on a strap around his neck, so I figure, I’m safe.

There. I went through a lot to get this. Many Bothans, etc.

I’ve been enjoying the delusions of the Tartarians, as one must. This is the believe that a race of sophisticated, peaceful, technologically advanced giants built the civilization in which we now live. They were destroyed by their lessers in a “mud flood” and now we live in a Matrix, brainwashed into believing a false history.

It’s hard to tell who’s kidding. The Twitter account below, for example, might be taken seriously by other Tartarians, until they pick up a few details that seem not to jibe with a true believer’s convictions.

  What, you ask, does this mean? It means that the presence of basement windows is proof that the mud flood buried the old world. The fact that they put it on the money, RIGHT THERE, BLATANTLY, is proof that the overlords are laughing at you.

It is important for the believers in these things to know that their overlords are actually less intelligent than those who have discovered the truth. The overlords are more powerful, because of trickery and money and probably all sorts of Jew Magic, but they are not smarter. Oh no.

  This account constantly puts up old monuments and derides the notion that “pilgrims” could have built them.
  And they'll lie about the 1893 Expo, too - telling you it was made of chaff! It was marble, I tell you! Meant to survive the ages!

Unless they’re just having fun for engagement and X-Bux. It’s hard to tell.

This piece, which correctly calls the idea the “Qanon of Architecture,” says:

A dedicated group of YouTubers and Reddit posters see the Singer Building and countless other discarded pre-modern beauties and extant Beaux-Arts landmarks as artifacts of a globe-spanning civilization called the Tartarian Empire, which was somehow erased from the history books. Adherents of this theory believe these buildings to be the keys to a hidden past, clandestinely obscured by malevolent actors.

They did a remarkably bad job of it, didn’t they? Part of our malevolent brainwashing enterprise consists of leaving all this evidence that provides such a stylistic break with modernism that you can’t help but notice the change.

Who? Why? To what possible end? As in many other, more high profile conspiracy theories, this baroque fantasy doesn’t offer much in the way of practical considerations, logic or evidence. But it’s grounded in some real anxieties, pointing toward the changes wrought by the modern world in general and modern architecture specifically — and rejecting both.

You can read a lot into this, and steeple-finger through some egghead sessions wondering what it’s all about and what it says about contemporary society, but let me cut to the pith, gist-wise: these are profoundly stupid people. They can recognize the difference between contemporary architecture and pre-modern architecture, which is akin to a slug’s ability to distinguish between hot and cold, but they’re just mulishly stupid, like anyone who believes they have grabbed on to the hot wire of Truth and confuse the sensation with revelation.

But can’t we learn something from this? Something meta about our inability to reconcile past and present, about the disorienting effects of modernity? No. That gives these people too much credit. Remember, the beauty of modern Paris was a top-down urban renewal project that was opposed by the traditionalists of the day. They opposed the destruction of the unique and small and ancient with block after block of look-alike structures. The smart ones wrote pieces lamenting the loss of history and character, and they had a point.

Our modern idiots write broadsides about how the imposition of a unified aesthetic was really about the lizard-eyed people from the center of the earth, rewriting the world so we would accept their new order.

It is hard for some people to accept that things just happen, and while there are small plans, there are no grand plans.




It’s 1932.

These are from the marvelously named “Delineator” magazine. I’ve cleaned them up and color-corrected to bring back the actual experience of reading an ad in the early 30s.

Ketchup makes it an event!

You get a sense of the broad, vivacious flavor profile of the era when you learn that ketchup gives stews a certain plus.


The married woman has just gone three rounds with a flamethrower and a cement mixer:


THE moment the telephone jingled Mary knew. Tom was staying at the office. An absurd little fear prickled at the back of her neck as she took down the receiver and said, "hello." She hated to have her voice tremble that way. But somehow she simply couldn't help it. She knew exactly what he was going to say. Same old excuses -desk piled high with work - important meeting tomorrow--don't wait up, darling, I'll be home as early as I can. Of course all wives have to expect little disappointments like this. She was a jealous little fool to imagine anything. Still, this was the third time this month

Was it possible? Could there be, ever, another woman?

Does Familiarity Breed Contempt?

Don’t let some smooth-skinned floozy muscle in on your man! Slather on this cream! Now!

Pretty much, yeah. I mean if you have to ask

Your mirror ain’t asking bupkis, honey. Text:

Like other women who have solved this eternal problem, you, too, can delay that fateful, disillusioning moment when your mirror reveals the cruel marks of Time, however faint.

To fade prematurely is utterly unnecessary now. No woman need surrender weakly to this threat to happiness. If you are still in your thirties, preventive treatments are necessary. If you are in your forties, corrective treatments are your only recourse.

Push it off as long as you can, but it’s coming for you.

You almost read it backwards, left and up, from OVENIZED. That may have been intentional. The HAS seems to be abrupt and ungrammatical.

Those pesky in-laws, always snooping, always judging. What a joy I get from keeping my secrets to myself!

Extremely popular and well-advertised. What happened? Proctor & Gamble dumped it in favor of newer brands, and no one looked back or missed it much.

They’re in their 90s now.

Campbell’s did a lot of these gauzy sentimental ads, playing on Mother’s emotions. Maybe the kids were pleased to get tomato soup. I hated the stuff. Chicken and Stars, that was okay.

But Chicken and Stars hadn’t been invented yet.


Be like royalty:


Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent (born Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark, 30 November] 1906 – 27 August 1968) was a Greek princess by birth and a British princess by marriage. She was a daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark and Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia, and a granddaughter of King George I and Queen Olga of Greece.

Princess Marina married Prince George, Duke of Kent, fourth son of King George V and Queen Mary, in 1934.

Elizabeth was her sister. It seems as if she had a less exciting and productive life, if we can judge by the length of her Wikipedia piece, but she died at 50, which does tend to cut into the amount of things for which one is remembered.


There’s no reason Tubby shouldn’t have a second portion, because these desserts are digestible!

Oh how they worried about digestibility in those days. Heavens forbid you eat a cookie and sits in your stomach like a half-dollar piece, to quote Aunt Penny in her sun-lit kitchen.

That'll do. Now it's time to return to the tales of the Sweetheart of the Comics, the Black Cat!


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