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Hyperion February 11, 2005

The Hyperion Chronicles

“Worth every penny”

#338 Potpourri, Volume XXXII

Greetings, Salutations, and a great big Yo. I hope this week finds you in love, and possibly possessing a small fort made of blankets and pillows.

The reason we watch

Many of you took in the Super Bowl over the weekend, no doubt drawn in by the pageantry and poetry that is professional football. Ah, I’m just kidding. The vast majority of you who watched did so for the Super Bowl commercials. In what has become a ritual as important as the game itself (more so, in blowouts), the Super Bowl commercials are a showcase for companies to do their very best to WoW you. This year, it was a little tame, with everyone still reeling from last year’s Nipple-Gate, but they still managed some good ones.

If you’re like me, stuck in Canada in the Witness Protection Program, you sadly could not watch the Super Bowl commercials. Canadian TV highjacks the feed, and then has the gall to show regular commercials. Forget Canada’s complete lack of military might: you’ll never be a world power until your people quote a beer commercial two weeks straight.

Luckily, I have come to the rescue (well, I, and the good people at I-Film). If you click here, you can watch all the Super Bowl commercials. Tell me which one was your favorite.

Hypocrisy, thy name is Coleoptera

Speaking of Janet Jackson and the great moral movement that is the NFL (please notice the dripping sarcasm), I wrote a whole column last year attacking these morons. They have the gall to get all stuffy over Janet Jackson, but look at their product: The NFL routinely shows us cheerleaders in very tight (or tiny) outfits (not that I’m complaining, but hey), and then dovetails that with 25 erectile dysfunction ads per game.

To top off the hypocrisy, this year they bring in Sir Paul McCartney, to ensure a “safe” half-time show, free of mammary flashes. Well, Paul got the boring part right. However, he sang songs that include drug references!!!

Yes, they are from the ‘60s, when everyone was doing it, and over time the songs have become “respectable,” but tell me how drugs are a better influence on the kids than a quick flash of a breast?? And, if you are one of those people who get all misty-eyed over the four mop-tops, consider this: if Eminem had done the halftime show, and rapped one of his songs with drug references, would that be okay? I thought not.

It’s time to get more smartly

Stepping off my high-horse for a moment, it’s our Potpourri tradition of Vocabulary words. Today’s are a real treat. How many can you get? (Answers below)


B) How are DELIQUESCENT and EXCURRENT related?


Hint of the Day

When you get to my name and date below, there’s still more fun. We pack lots of jokes into all the credits. Make sure you read all the way to the end.

Letter of the Month (the more things change…)
People, I simply could not make this up. I hold in my hands the editorial page from a recent issue of the local paper here in
Unknown, Canada. They reprinted letters from 100 years ago. I would like to show you one, from a Harold M Diggon. He writes in response to some woman who had the temerity to voice her opinion. I’m not quite sure what he is talking about, but I wish I’d lived back then:

As to the Marriage state, a young lady, in speaking of the subject of married life quotes that “Man’s love is a thing apart. ‘Tis woman’s whole existence.” If, therefore, marriage fails, it is the man’s fault, not the woman’s. in acting as the champion for women, she says that cigars are an expensive and wholly unnecessary luxury.

Club-life-together, with all that it entails, is an extravagance, additional to the cost of a ménage. It is a well-known fact, she says, that men’s clubs can only exist on the strength of their wine and spirit accounts. The inference is clear.

In my opinion, an ideal home is realized if the wife can cook, she doesn’t read novels, if she makes her own dresses, if she never lets the babies cry.

Criminal of the Week

Obviously I cannot top ol’ Harold Diggon, but we press on. I have in my hands a news report of the one of the dumbest criminals in awhile. It seems that the thief stole a ’95 Honda Prelude. Pretty ordinary crime. Then he spent over $7,000 to fix it up, including a new driver’s side door, a new trunk, new back fender, new mirrors, tinted windows, detailed interior, new seats and seatbelts, a new CD stereo system and a fresh paint job (you have to admire a thief who takes pride in his stolen automobile).

But here’s the kicker: after all that work, the thief (I can hardly write this I’m laughing so hard), neglected to change the tags or the VIN number of the car, which had been reported stolen.

The original owners showed up at the Police impound yard to claim their vehicle, only to be perplexed (but pleased) to get it back better than when stolen. Here’s hoping the would-be criminal finds a new line of work, but if he is reading, I have a Chevy Cavalier that could really use some work.

The only thing I ever found in my neighborhood was Jocelyn, and my brother Achmed stole her

However, criminals aren’t the only ones being stupid. Convenience store employees in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Dallas were surprised when neighborhood kids started paying for candy with crisp One Hundred Dollar bills. It seems that a 12 year old boy found somewhere between $30,000 and $100,000 (authorities still haven’t been able to pin down the exact amount), and started spending it like mad. Being the naturally generous guy he was (I bet he grows up to steal cars and give them back nicer), the kid gave all his friends lots of cash too.

Sadly, none of these kids (or their brain-dead parents) read my Motto for 2005 and played the tape all the way through. Let’s see: tens of thousands of dollars in what amounts to a “ghetto” neighborhood. Where could it have come from? Who can figure out this gigantic mystery??? (Where’s the Scooby gang when you need them?)

It all started to go wrong a few days after the money was found. One of the boys was abducted and threatened if the money wasn’t returned. Another woman said she was watching TV with her son when two men burst into the apartment. One of the men said, “I don’t have no problem with killing you. I want my money right now.”

Unfortunately, the generous lad had, according to his mother, spend a little of the money, and GAVE THE REST AWAY. Forget the asinine reasoning that allows a kid to steal from a drug dealer or his mother to let him for a moment: how does one lose one hundred thousand dollars in a few days? And most of it to friends? How is this possible? And nobody noticed? Man, even Dylan and Eric’s parents are laughing at them.

Anyway, back to the story: the mother told the nice “businessmen” that her son had lost all the money, and offered to (this is my favorite part) pay the money back in installments.

[short break while Hyperion laughs so hard he nearly breaks a rib]

Okay: sorry about that. I guess the lesson here is one that should have been taught in school, but just in case it wasn’t, please tell any kid you see (whom you don’t want to die): Never steal money from someone who will shoot you to get it back.

Nonetheless, I still fully expect to see baby ‘Hyperions’ one day soon

Now, let’s turn to some really messed up kids. Celebrities had some pretty strange names for their kids last year, no? We had Coco (Courtney Cox’s kid), Apple (Gwyneth Paltrow’s), and Julia Roberts topping everyone by naming her twins Hazel and Phinnaeus.

Of course, this isn’t anything new. Demi Moore and Bruce Willis are parents to a Rumer Glenn, Scout Larue and Tallulah Belle. Sylvester Stallone came up with a Sage Moonblood and Sistine Rose. Erykah Badu (herself a victim of the ongoing naming conspiracy that is Black Mothers in America) named her child Puma, Christie Brinkley has a daughter named Sailor, and rocker Bob Geldof sired a Fifi Trixabelle.

It gets worse.

Soccer star David Beckham and former Spice Girl Victoria Adams have kids named Brooklyn, Romeo, and San Miguel. Claudia Schiffer and Cybil Shepherd BOTH have daughters named Clementine, and Rob Morrow (of NORTHERN EXPOSURE and the new CBS show NUM8ERS) named his baby Tu. As in Tu Morrow. Topping them all is the late INXS rocker Michael Hutchence, who named his daughter (I am not making this up)

Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily.

Of course, while normally I am not in favor of royally screwing your kids by giving them these names, in the case of celebrities’ offspring it probably isn’t a big deal. People will still like them because of their parents, and any damage of a strange name will be far outweighed by the damage of being kids of famous people. However, the trend has trickled down to North America, and this is bad.

Last year, in my fair city, the following names were registered MORE THAN ONCE; Saffron, Tea, Basil, Cherry, Melba, Roma, Colby, and Chai. Do you see a theme? An entire generation of kids are going to grow up with eating disorders because of this.

But it gets even worse than that.

Experts say a whole batch of food names are soon to be hitting maternity wards:

Pepino: A fruit from Peru

Chayote: a vegetable pear

Pomegranate: I think this is a fruit that Song of Solomon compares to ample breasts. Yeesh.

Radicchio: some sort of leafy vegetable

Calabaza: a squash. (If you name your kid after a squash, go ahead and squash his dreams while you’re at it)

Kiwano: A horned melon. You read that right: soon there will be children named after melons WITH HORNS!

Marang: I don’t even know what this is, but apparently it’s not the pie topping, ‘cause that’s spelled differently

Persimmon: I give up. The whole generation is lost.

For no reason

I was at a friend’s 30th birthday party last evening (more about that rowdy time later), and one of the guests, who is a Reader, mentioned how she loved cute pictures in the potpourri. So, for no other reason than to make Sparrow happy:

Vocabulary Answers (please don’t name your kids any of these)

A) DECALCOMANIA: The art of transferring pictures or designs from paper to other surfaces (in other words, doing decals)

B) DELIQUESCENT means branches flowing outward (usually on a tree, like an Elm). EXCURRENT means having one trunk that runs all the way through without branching off

D) SOCKDOLAGER: A heavy or knock down blow. (read about its origins and other very weird words here)

I’d like to “Sockdolager” him

This last word is brought to you by one of my Readers. It was his response to one of my columns. You see, he always writes one word replies, and they’re usually out of left-field, so it takes me awhile to figure out what he means. At first, I loved the challenge and the uniqueness of a return email from him, and looked forward to it. However, it’s getting a little stale, so, Baker: when you read this: come out from your Thesaurus and tell me what you really think. (Now watch; everyone will start doing it.)

A questionable attempt to elicit Reader Response

Over the next few weeks, we are doing a few columns where your input will be helpful. The first one is on the differences between the United States and Canada. So, if you think you have any knowledge on the subject, be sure to let us know in the next week or so.


Finally, we’re right in the middle of Chinese New Years’ celebrations. Personally, I like waiting until now to celebrate the new year, although for me, the old year definitely ends December 31. I guess what I’m saying is that January is always completely a waste, and should be treated as lost time. Anyway, if you run into anyone partying this week, here are some helpful phrases you can use, as well as my corny comments to each:

Gung Hay Fat Choy: Prosperity to you (also a Hong Kong movie star)

Lung Mah Jing Sun: May you have the health and spirit of dragons and horses (but not their breath or bowel movements)

Bah Ji Chin Soon: Wishing you a hundred sons and a thousand grandchildren (Where’s a tubal ligitant when you need one?)

Man Si Sing Hi: May all your wishes come true (oh, when will this stupid column be over?)

Whaddya Know?

That’s life in the Monkey Barn,


February 11, 2005


Thanks to all the Alert Readers who sent me stuff: Dominique, Lillian, Koz

Thanks to Baker for the Vocab word, and what I’m sure will be a brilliant one word reply to my challenge

Bon L’anniversaire Q-Dog!

Motto Explanation

Since as of yet none of you ingrates are paying me, I’m backhandedly saying this column is worthless. I don’t actually mean that, of course. The column is worth $1.37


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