Oh, Shit! — or — Why Things Are Always So Fucked Up

I’ve thought for many years about why “otherwise intelligent” people can believe or say certain things that are demonstrably false. I mean, there are people who can look and sound as smart as anyone you know, but who don’t “get” certain things. Who WON'T get certain things.For instance, you can know someone who is a fantastic organizer or salesman, someone who can get rich in running a business, handing every detail easily, but who can’t accept global warming, or evolution ... even when you exp … [Read more...]

Sociopaths in Paradise — Part 1

Back when I was in politics, one of the side effects of running for office was that I had a lot more people in my face.If you’re used to your small private life, especially if you’re an introvert like me, you have no idea how much you treasure your time in your own home pursuits, until that time is threatened, or vanishes.Give you an example: It’s years and years back, and I’m running for town council. This necessitates talking to a lot of people. Not in speeches or TV appearances, but just i … [Read more...]

Because I Am An Atheist

Ian Cromwell, brilliant fellow FtBer who writes a profound and witty blog under the Crommunist Manifesto banner, asked me to contribute to his "Because I am an atheist" series. He printed my piece a bit less than a week ago, with an intro that referred to me as "the incomparable Hank Fox." (How can you not like a guy who calls you THAT?)I'm echoing the piece here. If you'd like to contribute your own take on the subject, Crommunist is actively soliciting submissions.  Click the title link … [Read more...]

The Funny Thing About Sexual Harassment. And Then the Unfunny Thing.

Tell you a coupla stories:When I was about 16, I worked part-time as a stock boy and gofer at the central office of a chain of health clubs in Houston.One of my not-quite-co-workers was Bobby, a big black guy who was the right-hand man of the distribution director. The performance of our duties would normally almost never put Bobby and I in the same room together, but I saw him everyday anyway. … [Read more...]

If All Your Friends Jumped Off a Bridge …

bridge_jumper

A phrase popped into my head yesterday while I was thinking about something completely different, and I’d like to toss it at you: “challenge food.”A challenge food is that stuff you’re expected to eat, not because it’s good, not because it’s something you would normally like, but to prove to your friends that you’re tough. Or daring. Or ... willing to go along with the joke.How many times have you heard people rave about chili hot enough to bring tears to your eyes? Or read some story abo … [Read more...]

The 30,000

[ This is a reprint of an earlier post, to keep new readers happy while I work on some new ideas. ]Say someone gave you $30,000, in cash, and the deal was, you had to live on it as long as you could. You couldn’t do any other income-producing work in that time, you just had to live on the 30 grand.You’d have to pay all your bills on it, provide for all your daily needs. You’d have no additional money coming in, and all your entertainment needs, your health needs, your travel and leisure needs … [Read more...]


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