Welcome to the Petting Zoo

The Bright Line

Insofar as a god is transcendental, it does not meddle in or care overmuch about the affairs of the microcosmic – that is to say mankind. In fact, it’s highly doubtful a physical mind, constructed of meat and a bit of electricity, could accurately grasp – much less convey – even the grossest permu...

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The Fantastic Four Agreements: a superhero social overhaul

We all know who the Fantastic Four is — movies notwithstanding. A team. A family. And just plain super. But what makes them as great as they are? What makes them the Fantastic Four?

It’s not because they’re under control of some godlike supernatural entity, or even because they are bound by th...

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Cart, horse, whatever

People who find cruelty at all acceptable become adept at fabricating rationales behind exercising it.

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Rubber Fails

Oh god, there was rubber everywhere!

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Revelations 0_0

I’ve seen a number of movies — as I’m sure you have as well — where the final end sequence is a revelation. The final act, the master-stroke against the Bad Guy by the Good Guy is that the Good Guy manages to reveal to the world just what a complete asshole the Bad Guy was.

Maybe it’s a worldwide...

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“Poisonous Ideology”

I’ve been pondering the term “poisonous ideology.”

I think it’s about time people stopped shadow-boxing abstractions and focused on results.

For example, I don’t care which political party actually manages to feed, clothe, and shelter the poor, the frail, the mentally ill, the people who are o...

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Grieve and Grow

For every artist you loved who has died, for every musician who will never write a new song again, for every comic who actually made really good points who no longer walks among us…

…certainly grieve in the way that suits your memories…

…but also, please ask yourself to look around you at the ch...

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Buttered Miaow

We’ve all thought about it.

One man has finally decided to make the leap and try it.

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Imagineering Priorities

Dear newswires and news agencies and news sites world-wide.

I’ve noticed that every single news article regarding the polio vaccine (or any other vaccine) is accompanied by a crying child who is being held or grabbed by an adult, while the vaccine is administered.

Could you please, please, plea...

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The Designated Control Freak

Many years ago, while traveling with new friends, we learned a phrase from them: Designated Control-Freak (or DCF).

The DCF is who — in a group of people — decides where we shall have dinner that night (this was the context in which it came up). So how, we wondered, was the DCF actually designate...

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“Hey guys, wait up, wait up!”

Retarding intellectual development and scientific progress until religion, ethics, and morality can “catch up” is a shell game.

It is the responsibility of religion, ethics, and morality to advance and grow enough to remain applicable to a culture that is defined and created by intellectual and sc...

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“Cleanup on Aisle Collaboration, please.”

There is a game I read about years ago.

In that game, four kids each hold onto a broomstick, and try to push it downward into a cup on the floor.

That can already be a little tricky.

But there is a fifth kid at the bottom and it’s their job — with one hand on the broom — to keep the broom from...

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“…and this is your brain on writing.”

Middle of the night…

  1. What’s that sound? Is my phone making that sound? What is it?
  2. (grabbing phone) What, phone? What are you trying to tell me?
  3. Recognizes name of friend displayed on phone.
  4. What’s wrong? Is this an alarm about [friend’s name redacted]? Is [friend’s name redacted] hurt?
  5. Wa...

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“Everything you know is wrong…”

I think that the Monty Hall Problem is one of those litmus tests for how smart you really are. Not how many things you memorized or how much trivia you soaked up, but by how willing you are to change your assumptions when faced with data that contradicts those assumptions.

When I first encounter...

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To Shuck the Chains

The dismissal of gods is an act of profound humility and an acceptance of an astounding perspective.

To a mind conditioned and trained to requiring a superior being, dismissing gods is an act of arrogance, because to such a mind, there must be a superior being and such a dismissal leaves a power...

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That’s the end of the road, folks!

Did you know that water has an expiration date? Neither did I!

Not to be too conspiracy-minded, but…

…I sure hope we recognize how important fresh drinkable water is to civilization, and that we keep this in mind when choosing what to do with it, or who’s in charge of keeping toxic shit out o...

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Frititaj Terpomoj

Dear French Fries,

Yes, you’ve been around since my childhood.

Yes, you’ve always consoled me when burgers treat me like shit.

Yes, I realize that somewhere in your core, you desire to be healthy and good.

Yes, I realize that many of my good memories come from times you’ve been with me.


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“How can I change my partner’s mind about multipartner relationships?”

I think, roughly once a day, I see this question on a board or on a list or in a group somewhere.

In my experience, when a person is so inclined toward some form of relationship, they will almost immediately gravitate toward...

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“She knew the deal when she signed up.”

You know how sometimes people in multipartner relationships say “Well, this person agreed to that kind of relationship dynamic when they signed on, so they have no room to bitch” when it comes to disposing of partners that have become inconvenient or distrac...

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A “Gilligan’s Island” Kind of Life

When I was a kid, and on those rare occasions when the TV worked, I liked watching Gilligan’s Island.

(If you haven’t seen it, then honestly, you need to watch a few episodes. In fact, watch a lot of episodes. Gilligan’s Island is a brilliant metaphor for society. It’s okay, I’ll wait until yo...

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