Friday, July 31, 2015

blind squirrel finds acorns, footy on my tweet in 15

The internetz somehow found their moment in the sun today, delivering two pieces of supra-normal goodness.

Though their writing generally stinks to high pig heaven, these guys definitely know their way around still and video cameras:

Vital RAW - Mont Sainte Anne DH Rock Smashing - More Mountain Bike Videos

Normally it's 1-2 mins of unFancy, this time it's a good 4 mins, my favorite being roughly 2:10 - 2:50.

Second acorn was a startling piece of get-out-of-the-way-and-let-the-story-tell-itself journalism -- from, of all places, pinkbike:

1 Question: What Does It Take To Become A Faster Rider?

Best thing Kazimer/Levy/Cunningham did with that piece is not inject The Pinkbike Pro Perspective.  Normally they are busy letting us know how pro they are at pinkbike.  But to whom did they turn when they wanted good explanations of bike riding skill, in a way that can't sell more gear?  It couldn't be Kazimer, Levy, Cunningham, Wragg.  Maybe Paul Aston could have done it though.  But anyway, the proper perspective there with the interviewees is to ask a simple question and get the hell out of the discussion from that point forward, because you're not at their level.  They're teaching you, not vice versa.  Keep doing that, Kazimer, and you may go places with your writing-in-journalist-mode.

Today, an oak tree gets planted. Two, even.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

brief chat with sad angry hypocrite who hates himself

Hey Jeff.  See you've been rampaging about hunters and praising Gay Liar Tarzie for his "animal rights" word-fluffery.  Also see you've been spewing flecks of spittle at people who don't fuck their housecats like you do.  What's up with that shit, Jeff?

Cats are a sign of Kindness.  You have to love cats or you embody Hate.

I see.  So that new co-worker who told you he hates cats, that sent you into a rage?  Is it like this every time someone holds a different opinion?  You rage, you fume, you seethe, and then you put on your sandpaper glove and wank your little thimbledick until it bleeds profusely -- on the internet?

The only valid opinion is the one I hold.  I alone see the truth of reality.

Verily, I say unto thee:  thine art an exemplar, and an extraordinary one at that, of the unhinged!  But let us try a different tack.  Sorry, that's sailing talk there, Jeff.  You're not a sailor; you're an armchair athlete who still harkens (and/or hearkens) back to his 10th grade soccer exploits every time athletic feats are in question, eh?  Anyway, a "tack" is a direction of a sailboat, it depends upon the wind at play at the moment of description, and the sailor's ability to harness that wind with the available mix of sails and the ropes which tension those sails.  So we'll try a different tack here.  HARD-A-LEE!  Okay, now we're moving to starboard.  Might you actually hate progressives with a vengeance, and you embody the progressive view on your BLCKDGRD blog just as a sort of weak-tea attempt at parody? 

My tea is never weak, bro.  I don't want to have to repeat that, bro.

It's incredible the way you seem to know the hipster lingo of two or three trends ago, and use it with such aplomb.  It's almost -- well, I don't want to get carried away with this theme, but -- it's almost reactionary.  "Bro."  Sure, we can work with that.  "Bro."  Did you actually call your friends "bro" back in 10th grade when you still thought you would be the Diego Maradona of your high school?

I bet you are a hunter.  Or were a hunter.  You are quite uncouth.

Deftly our Popovichian Poetastery Practitioner switches topics when the discussion moves into an area of ego brittleness.  If only he had the same feinting, dodging and juking skills displayed bipedally in 10th grade, he might actually have become that fantasized Maradona-of-his-own-HS.  So what's up with the hatred of hunters, Jeff?  You'd prefer that your comestibles of the animal carcass variety be brought to table through the vehicle of a factory farm? 

I don't eat meat.  Well, other than Tarzie's wang, which I only suck and don't literally eat.

Aaaaahhh.  So you have tits and withdrawn, retreated balls because you gobble the tofu in place of meat?  Do you also take estrogen therapy?  Are you in the early stages of transgender assignment surgery?

Maleness = EVIL.  Any good feminist will confirm this assertion for you, you ridiculous misogynist.

So in Jeff Popovich's world, men should hunt fine Italian shoes, swanky Egyptian cotton bed linens, and the penis and anus of other like-minded men -- or else not be real men?  Is that the gist of your position, Jeff?

My position is bottom.  Always.  I take, I take, I take.  I'm a taker.

How do you reconcile this male-hatred with your sexual lust for same-sex XY chromosomal males, Jeff?  Is that just what The Modern Androgyne is expected to do?  Is there some online or in-print manual you follow for this strange hypocrisy you embody?  Does it contain the journal entries of Ernst Rohm?

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

yeah, I'm sure you do

Chris Hedges has published an essay with the lone purpose of defending - legitimizing - boosting - buffing - polishing the boycott/divest/sanctions "movement" regarding Israel.

He calls the essay, "Why I Support the BDS Movement."

I can save you the time & effort required to read the whole thing and tell you why he supports that "movement."

Here's why.

It doesn't achieve anything.

Friday, July 24, 2015


The beacon of democracy in the Middle East would never do anything to thwart American interests, and therefore we should pay it recompense for America "not budging" on the Iran nukes issue.

Further your affiant sayeth naught.

-- Harold Caidagh, alleged internet provocateur and former staff writer for UNSF

wreck yourself

With Mr Redweld's permission, I am offering one small suggestion for your viewing habits. 

Do yourself a favor and watch the German movie Die Kommenden Tage, viewable on Netflix as The Days to Come

It rates a mediocre 6.4 out of 10.0 on, but in O'Dyan's World, it rates a 9.0/10.0.  Perhaps this means you'll assign a 1.0/10.0 or a 0.0/10.0, but you won't know until you watch it.

-- Anne O'Dyan, elusive former typist for UNSF.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

has been a never was

We're here at the International Moron Breeding Association annual meeting, and about to start a roundtable discussion on why we need to Grow the Sport (TM reserved IMBA) with Flow Trails (TM reserved IMBA) and generalized deference to land managers.  I'm Biffington Barfwell III, your moderator for the discussion.

Seated around the table are the following luminaries of The Sport:

* Spike Grievey, Canadian citizen and click farmer, whom you may know as one of the editorial geniuses responsible for the global internet powerhouse

* Snott Brownes, American citizen and general Pep Booster, whom you may know as a regular commenter at the aforementioned and at second-tier internet outlet

* Verdant Welkum, American citizen and sometime junior scrivener at the publication fatBIKE, whom you may know as an instigator of essential internet debates surrounding such pivotal topics as whether you should carry an artisanal flask of small-batch whiskey when you go for rides longer than 30 minutes from wherever you parked your Porsche SUV with KUAT rack.

* Blevins Razar, American citizen and ubiquitous trustafarian populating all the best (and even the best-est) forum discussions of mountain bikes on the internet, whom you may know from his copyrighted taunts, "I'ma roost yo faissss!" or "You're an idiot!"

* Joah Codminn, American citizen and renowned reviewer of all things MTB, whom you may know from his stellar shares of wisdom at

* Len Bairascz, Canadian citizen and general parts-spec guru at Cocky Fountain Bicycles, whom you may know from his authoritative posts at

* Korie Schwarzwald, American citizen, male feminist and territorial sales manager for Lavadome Bicycles, whom you may know from his profound online condemnations of anyone who isn't a progressive in political outlook.

We will open the discussion with a presentation from Snott Brownes.  Snott, you have the floor.

SB:  Well, tremendous thanks there, Biff, and I'm pleased and proud to be here among such stars of The Sport.  Let me just start by saying I don't think there's a reasonable mind alive today who doubts that we need to GROW The Sport TM, and I don't believe there is anyone who considers himself or herself a mountain biker who would question the need for more Flow Trails TM.  I think the discussion today should focus more on whether we can indeed Grow the Sport TM fast enough, or whether we can successfully replace all existing MTB trails with Flow Trails TM in time to please all the land managers throughout America.  Verdant, what's your take on all this?

VW:  Snott, I've been a journalist for a long time and I've seen a lot of stupid ideas during that time.  One of the stupidest ideas was having trails that aren't immediately accessible to someone who is just learning how to balance on a bicycle.  I have several friends who tried mountain biking back in the early 2000s, and they quit after 2 rides because the trails intimidated them.  Clearly that's a problem.

LB:  As a Canadian who would like to see his employer sell more bikes, I agree completely.  For too long, MTB has been a small niche activity practiced by a bunch of filthy, low-class and generally poor-taste elitists who think that knowing how to balance and maneuver a bicycle is an essential pre-requisite to trail riding.  We can forgive these ignorant cretins for their elitism since they're so unbelievably gauche and insensitive to the needs of Professionals who work 65 hrs/week or more, but we can't let them set the tone and tenor of The Sport any longer. 

KS:  I'd like to remind everyone how reactionary and misogynistic the sport has been since its inception.  True mountain bikers are not elitist and they always vote Democrat.  Anyone who doesn't vote Democrat is a reactionary misogynist who should be burned at the stake.  And not allowed to ride MTBs.

SG:  As one of The Sport's foremost click farmers, I'd just like to throw this thought out for everyone's consideration:  would you rather have Flow Trails TM, or no trails?  Would you rather Grow the Sport TM, or watch approvingly as the government confiscates everyone's bicycle after closing all trails to MTBs?  These are our choices.

JC:  I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on working with land managers.  As far as I'm concerned, we need to bow and scrape to every whim of the land managers, even when we suspect (probably because of undiagnosed psychological illness) that the land managers are behaving irrationally or making policy decisions without supporting evidence.  As far as I'm concerned, they are the authorities, and we need to respect their authority and defer to them no matter what the issue.  Otherwise, the land managers will begin to make policy decisions that might hurt The Sport.  I don't think anyone wants that.

LB:  This gets back to my point about the elitists and their lack of good breeding.  They think that rabble-rousing, anarchy and violent revolution are the way to help maintain MTB access.  I hope you see as clearly as I do that such attitudes are destructive and likely to result in lots of people getting hurt.  Innocent people.  Children, mostly.  Think of the children, as they are our future.  Anarchists deserve to be shot and/or tortured because they threaten the children.  Thus, in order to save the children from being burned alive by the anarchist elitists who used to call the shots back in the early 2000s, we need to obey land managers, Grow the Sport, and build Flow Trails.  Which will lead to more bicycle sales.  Which will let me buy that second house my wife keeps nagging me about.

BR:  I just want to talk about bottom bracket heights.  I mean, what's the deal with those bikes that have BBs higher than 12" off the ground?  I know one of the reasons why that happened and why it continues to this day is people being afraid of rocks, roots and ruts in the trails, but we're all in agreement that Flow Trails TM are the future and therefore we should have flat, smooth trails that let us run 11" BB heights, which will Grow the Sport TM to incredible new participant tallies.  As the smartest guy in the room I can tell you this:  trails are boring when they are rough, not to mention they aren't crowded when they are rough, and I like it when it's crowded, it reminds me of a frat party, and everyone knows frat parties kick ass.  Besides, I get scared when I'm in the woods alone.  Of course with all that CHA-CHING I have in my titanium hand-crafted safe in my workshop, I could pay 3 or 4 bodyguards to ride with me at all times, but then they might get in the way of me spraying roost in the face of anyone who ever made fun of me online. 

JC:  I agree with Blevins.  After all, he has a ski named after him.  Which means he's absolutely, irrefutably correct about anything he says or writes online.

BR:  I agree with Joah, he's written some stellar reviews at twister.  I don't think he's ever been wrong about anything.  I hear he's got a law degree too, which means whatever he says about dealing with land managers is 100% correct.  Law school teaches that kind of diplomatic wisdom, just like engineering school teaches you all you need to know about trail design and bottom bracket height.

SB:  As the only relative amateur in this august grouping of MTB stars, I just want to say, on behalf of all the bikers out there who have only average skills, that the faster we can replace all existing trails with Flow Trails TM and the sooner we Grow the Sport to something bigger than NASCAR, I won't have to explain to my neighbor why it is I drive my Porsche SUV with KUAT rack the 7 miles from my house to the local trailhead.  Everyone will know that mountain biking is more about hangin' with your bros at the trailhead, comparing SUVs and bike racks and bike upgrades.  Riding trails is just what you do to give you a reason to be at the trailhead.  That's why trails need to be Flow Trails TM, and that's why trails need to be easy enough for a paraplegic to ride without adaptive gear.  If you ask me, all MTB trails should be safe enough for a 3 year old child to ride on without crashing and without ever having to use the brakes or pedal or otherwise navigate the trail.  My ideal trail would resemble a slot car track -- you could ride it while sleeping.  The GoPro footy would be stellar!  Plus it would Grow the Sport tremendously!  Every child would love it!  My kids spend waaaaaaaaaaay too much time playing video games and sexting their peers.  If we don't get them out onto Flow Trails soon --and by soon I mean RIGHT NOW, if not yesterday-- we're going to have too many teen pregnancies on our hands.

KS:  Snott, it sounds like you're a misogynist and rapist.  Why do you hate women so much as to fantasize about young girls getting pregnant after sexting?  I bet you are a libertarian!  You're not even a real mountain biker!  Show me your sleeve tattoo!  Show me your iPod songlist.  Is there any Nine Inch Nails on your iPod?  No?  Then you're not a real mountain biker, and you're just a sad repthuglican who needs to die ASAP.

VW:  Korie, we've been friends a long time and I've written some stellar reviews for Lavadome because of that friendship, but even I have to admit -- you're taking things a little too far here.  Snott's one hell of a Pep Booster and his comments around the internet do heaps to Grow the Sport.  In fact, Snott may be the leading candidate for Sport Ambassador - Internet Citizenship.

KS:  Over my dead body.  I bet he didn't even support Obama in 2012.  He's part of the patriarchy!

SG:  I tend to agree with Verdant, but maybe that's because I don't understand Korie's sense of sarcasm.  He is kidding, isn't he?  I can't tell.  Our humor in Canada is so much gentler.  If Korie said those things in Canada he'd get run out of town, probably run out of the country.  Unless he lived in the Nortwest Territories, I guess.  I hear it's a little rough up there. 

KS:  I don't use sarcasm, Spike.  Sarcasm is rude, misogynistic, and a tool of the patriarchy.  I'm dead serious, I won't have any part of The Sport if Snott Brownes becomes Sport Ambassador.  I'll keep my job at Lavadome, of course, but I won't participate in internet discussion any more.  I have enough of that patriarchal privilege in my daily commute, which includes sharing the road with people who don't vote Democrat and who probably don't even own a bicycle.

Friday, July 3, 2015

comedy or comity?

I'm sure you're aware of the SCOTUS decision in King v Burwell, thanks to your favorite "expert" media source telling you that it's a victory for people everywhere.  This same "expert" media source probably told you that the ACA is historically significant because it helps a lot of Americans deal with health care problems.  The "expert" source probably also assured you that the ACA must survive the King v Burwell challenge as well as the prior challenge heard at the SCOTUS, Nat'l Federation of Independent Business v Sebelius -- also known as "the penaltax decision" in some corners.

If you're like the great majority of people I know from my interactions outside the world of The Law, you probably think the role of the SCOTUS is to be arbiter over touchy-feely Social Issues, and you likely assume the role of the Court is to be "progressive" so that America may embody the kinds of "progress" you hold dear yourself.  I'd even bet you would hasten to cite Obergefell v Hodges or Roe v Wade to bolster your position.

However, if pressed on the bases or principles which let you conclude that the SCOTUS is there to resolve matters concerning social progress, you would not be able to defend the position.  You'd scurry about, looking for a Glenn Greenwald or Nina Totenberg to rescue you, because you don't have the legal acumen to make the jurisprudential argument(s) yourself.  Honestly, I blame the American education system, both K-12 and post-secondary, for your relative naivete here.  It's not your fault, not entirely at least.


The SCOTUS is not a social arbiter.  It is an appellate court, and as such, it hears questions of law.

Not facts.


So when you assume a SCOTUS decision is about people in a tight, awkward social bind that cries out for a progressive resolution, you're mistaking SCOTUS for something like Judge Judy or Judge Wapner or some other television judge who hears disputes between people, disputes about factual resolution.

The SCOTUS docket is not about that kind of dispute.  It's about interpretation of the law(s) in question.  And statutory or constitutional provision interpretation is not done by feelings, by a sense of "social justice", or by reference to what is/is not "progress," socially speaking.  The role of the SCOTUS is not to defend or promote social progress.  It is to maintain sanctity of the law, using jurisprudence as its tool.

If you come at these issues from "the left" and you orient your outlook toward "social progress," you are going to have to re-frame your understanding of the US Constitution and its 3-chambered government.

The body tasked with discerning social problems and creating decisions (via legislation) which perform what you'd like to imagine as "social progress"?  That would be the Congress.

The body charged with implementation of such decisions (made via Congressional legislation) would be the Executive branch.

And the entity whose job it is to resolve questions surrounding the Legislative and Executive acts, and their fidelity to the US Constitution?  Can you guess which body that might be?  HINT:  It's not the Congress, and it's not the Executive.

It's the Judiciary.  Read Article III of the Constitution, in case you were wondering or are inclined to doubt me.


When you think of trial courts handling federal law matters in a Judge Judy setting, that's done by the US District Courts.  It's not done by the SCOTUS.

At the SCOTUS level, a case like King v Burwell is not about the particular plaintiffs David King, Douglas Hurst, Brenda Levy and Rose Luck.  It's not about their grievances from a factual standpoint.  Those personalized gripes were heard at the US District Court level.  Once the matter moved on from the US District Court decision via appeal to the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the case was about legal interpretation and not factual complaints.

The questions get even more remote and ethereal when the matter moves from a US Court of Appeals to the SCOTUS.  The Court of Appeals is bound to hear appeals from USDC level decisions.  But once you move from US Court of Appeals to US Supreme Court, you have a filter in place.  The SCOTUS hears only cases that require its unique resolution powers.  A typical reason for SCOTUS to hear a legal question brought from a Court of Appeals decision would be a situation where several different federal courts (either District Courts or Courts of Appeals) have interpreted a federal law in disparate fashion.  The SCOTUS then may accept the case in order to resolve the interpretations of the federal law in question.**


A different kind of mandatory appellate review exists for SCOTUS when the case is one which has made its way through a state court system, exhausting all state court appellate decision power.  For example, in Maryland you could have a case which works its way from Maryland District Court or Maryland Circuit Court (the first level trial court) to the Maryland Court of Special Appeals (the first level appellate court) to the Maryland Court of Appeals (the highest appellate court).  Once the MD Court of Appeals has ruled on the question, the only legal appeal left to the litigants is to seek a SCOTUS ruling on the matter.  But such a path was not the way King v Burwell ended up in the SCOTUS docket, so for the sake of clarification let's move on from this digression.


When a matter like King v Burwell is discussed in the news media, it is always glossed-over with heart-string-pulling language designed to grab your attention.  Media outlets make their money selling advertisement time, and advertisers pay for click counts and "eyes and ears" on the media put into the infotainment stream accessible to newspaper, magazine, television, radio and internet users.

Thus, King v Burwell is presented to you as a matter of the SCOTUS "ruling on Obamacare" as if the questions presented in King v Burwell were as trite as "Justice Sotomayor, should Obamacare be allowed to stand -- or not?"

If the case were presented in the media as it is presented in briefs and oral arguments at the SCOTUS, the great majority of media consumers would experience an excess of intra-cranial pressure (also known as painful amounts of confusion) due their general ignorance of (1) the law generally, (2) how the law is managed by judges, and (3) the intricacies of appellate review as compared to the facts-based trial court style of judging done by Judge Judy or Judge Wapner on television.

Do not feel insulted by this assertion. Appellate matters are poorly understood even by many practicing lawyers.  Many lawyers who do extensive or exclusively trial work avoid appeals like the plague.  Do you know why that is?

I do.

It's because trial litigation is about feelings, and appellate litigation is about logic and reasoning.

In the American judicial system, if you do litigation which seeks "social progress," you are a trial lawyer.  That's where you get to emphasize how a dispute or event made someone feel.  That's the court where emotional attachments are paramount.  Once you move beyond the trial court level, things change.

Once you get to the appellate level, it's an intellectual game, not a feelings-based emotional enticement to rule in your favor.

So, maybe it would behoove you, help you, benefit you, assist you or inform you further to enlighten yourself on just exactly what the SCOTUS is and what it does, before you assume that Chief Justice Roberts rendered a good decision in King v Burwell.  You may come to learn that despite what Mr Roberts opined, the role of the SCOTUS is not to use feelings and emotional enticements toward preserving the sanctity of the ACA and protecting it from criticism.


Perhaps I'll say more on this later.


** For the truly curious sociopolitical/legal geek who hasn't been through law school and/or hasn't taken a Constitutional Law class in undergraduate studies, it helps to understand Article III, Section 2 as setting the boundaries for federal court jurisdiction.