Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 115


This is the after election discussion episode so if you are tired of all that bullshit, skip this one. Maybe there will be another episode at some point for you to listen to instead.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.

Welcome to Episode 115: BS Election

We interrupt your regularly scheduled Carl Sagan Day with an Election

It is November 9th and that usually indicates the annual post of it being Carl Sagan Day. But in the light, or lack there of, of resent events and this years political landscape as a whole I am Canceling Carl Sagan Day do to a lack of critical thinking, rationality, and skepticism.

But here is a link to the first years, and here is a link to the second years

“I worry that, especially as the Millennium edges nearer, pseudo-science and superstition will seem year by year more tempting, the siren song of unreason more sonorous and attractive. Where have we heard it before? Whenever our ethnic or national prejudices are aroused, in times of scarcity, during challenges to national self-esteem or nerve, when we agonize about our diminished cosmic place and purpose, or when fanaticism is bubbling up around us-then, habits of thought familiar from ages past reach for the controls. The candle flame gutters. Its little pool of light trembles. Darkness gathers. The demons begin to stir.”

This is not just because of our new president elect but also because of all candidates that made it this far and, particularly, the way it was all handle by the public. Credulity abounded at all sides and when someone finally says the truth it is lost in the chants of rhetoric (which a great leader once said “judge a man by his action not his rhetoric”).

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

Setting aside all policies, Trump would make statement the would challenge the most skilled of contortionist by putting his foot in his mouth while his head was up his ass and gazing at his own navel, patting himself on the back and shrugging all at once. But were, you or I to do that it would be a failing of character but for him it is quote “him telling it like it is” even though the numbers don’t support that. PolitiFact, love or hate them, has evaluated 331 claims by Trump. 70% were found mostly false, false, or pants on fire. Compared to Clinton’s 293 with 26% being some level of false or Obama’s over the course of 8years 596 also at 26% false. This is not an endorsement of them being better choices it is more condemning the lack of accountability or more aptly the wanting there to be and willingness to accept accountability on the claims he made. Johnson and Sanders were nailed to the wall for not being able to back up there more outlandish claims.

“We’ve arranged a global civilization in which the most crucial elements — transportation, communications, and all other industries; agriculture, medicine, education, entertainment, protecting the environment; and even the key democratic institution of voting, profoundly depend on science and technology. We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces.”

Scientific American got a list of 20 “refined by a group of scientific institutions representing more than 10 million scientists and engineers” and graded the 4 major candidates with 5 being the most points that could be award (one question was not graded because it was on immigration and they felt if was outside the scope of the magazine to pass judgment on that topic) for a total of 95 points. The scores are as follows Trump 07; Clinton 64; Johnson 30; Stein 44. Now it is not a requirement for a leader to also be phd in the sciences but in a complicated world of climate change, vaccine denialism, and growing reliance on the STEM field it should be a requirement to understand the scientific processes and hold respect for it.

“Those who seek power at any price detect a societal weakness, a fear that they can ride into office. It could be ethnic differences, as it was then [Alien and Sedition Acts], perhaps different amounts of melanin in the skin; different philosophies or religions; or maybe it’s drug use, violent crime, economic crisis, school prayer, or ‘desecrating’ (literally, making unholy) the flag. Whatever the problem, the quick fix is to shave a little freedom off the Bill of Rights.”

Everyone was wiped into a state where the prevailing moods were fear, hatred, adulation, and orgiastic triumph. They all wanted this. Everyone of them. And we all felt it. Trump wanted you to fear and hate foreigners. Clinton wanted it to be Trump. Johnson wanted you to fear government. Sanders the wealthy. Stein…. um… well…. I don’t know want she want… I did not pay that much attention to her… Lets just say it was novelty welcome mats she wants us to fear. It became an election about negatives and differences. No one wanted to lead they wanted to win. So reason had to take a back seat.

“Education on the value of free speech and the other freedoms reserved by the Bill of Rights, about what happens when you don’t have them, and about how to exercise and protect them, should be an essential prerequisite for being an American citizen — or indeed a citizen of any nation, the more so to the degree that such rights remain unprotected. If we can’t think for ourselves, if we’re unwilling to question authority, then we’re just putty in the hands of those in power. But if the citizens are educated and form their own opinions, then those in power work for us. In every country, we should be teaching our children the scientific method and the reasons for a Bill of Rights. With it comes a certain decency, humility and community spirit. In the demon-haunted world that we inhabit by virtue of being human, this may be all that stands between us and the enveloping darkness.”

Carl Sagan mainly stuck to science and skepticism in his writing and tried to inspire a sense of wonderment in the grand future we could have. But occasionally he would turn the themes of critical thinking towards politics and the best example I can think of is his book ‘Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark‘. (Which I have it on good authority if you google it followed by ‘pdf’ you can find it to read for free). Now, sadly I have not reread it recently so I can’t call this a full BS Adult Book Report but for this special purpose I should be fine. If you are going to read one book from Carl Sagan or on the topic of skepticism or science communication this is the one. In it he goes through how we know what we know in science and more importantly how to detect when someone is trying to deceive us with false science. It also talks about why people are willing to believe in weird things and how they get deceived and not in a negative way. A basic primer on skepticism. It, though prone to tangents at times, is not written for a science major or someone in the deep end of skeptic moment. It is for the beginner and has enough topics for you to find one of interest for you. But also, he takes the time to explain why all of it is important, not just personally, but to a nation and world as a whole and that is were the political and social studies comes from. In it he speaks highly of the Founding Fathers particularly Thomas Jefferson, Constitution, and Bill of Rights. He thinks leaders should be intelligent and the citizens should be even more so and I can’t disagree with that. He also thinks our freedom our constantly under the assault of be removed, either by those seeking power for powers sake or by those seeking to profit through tricking us, I also cant disagree with that. And his solution is simple and obvious after all of this: just be aware.

We have failed Carl Sagan. We are letting the candle burn out and the cold, unforgiving dark creep in. People are distrusting science and letting the comforting myths of old sink in. It is almost a joke but there are people in the first world that believe in a flat earth and there is no excuse for that. The “religion of nationalism” has taken holed were a political party is more important than political good. But there is time turn back. And we can’t predict the future. Maybe it is not as bad as it seems and we will have a great next 4 years. Only time will tell. Maybe it was all a ploy to shine a light on how easy it is to be deceived (please, please let it be that…..) I will leave with a few more quotes from Demon-Haunted World that I find appropriate but could not find a place for otherwise. 

“I have a foreboding of an America in my children’s or grandchildren’s time — when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what’s true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness…”

“When we consider the founders of our nation: Jefferson, Washington, Samuel and John Adams, Madison and Monroe, Benjamin Franklin, Tom Paine and many others; we have before us a list of at least ten and maybe even dozens of great political leaders. They were well educated. Products of the European Enlightenment, they were students of history. They knew human fallibility and weakness and corruptibility. They were fluent in the English language. They wrote their own speeches. They were realistic and practical, and at the same time motivated by high principles. They were not checking the pollsters on what to think this week. They knew what to think. They were comfortable with long-term thinking, planning even further ahead than the next election. They were self-sufficient, not requiring careers as politicians or lobbyists to make a living. They were able to bring out the best in us. They were interested in and, at least two of them, fluent in science. They attempted to set a course for the United States into the far future — not so much by establishing laws as by setting limits on what kinds of laws could be passed. The Constitution and its Bill of Rights have done remarkably well, constituting, despite human weaknesses, a machine able, more often than not, to correct its own trajectory.”

Ryan S. Brewer is the co-host and editor of the Bored Shenanigans podcast (when he releases one) available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of Brewer’s Shitty Writing very sporadically here or as episode descriptions. Also he has nothing else to enjoy anywhere else, but you can find Cody’s poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or the Faceyspace. 

1984 Review

1984

If you want a review of George Orwell’s 1984, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.

The setting is of no consequence and the characters are irrelevant. Unless, of course the Party deems it to be.

In that case it would take place in London, England part of Oceania around the year of 1984 roughly 30 to 40 years after, what appears to be, a world wide revolution that followed an atomic war. A world that started diverged from our timeline near WWII. We follow the daily life of Winston Smith who’s job is to rewrite history, a younger girl, Julia, who’s rebellion is purely of self interest, a man of privilege and orthodoxy and both ally and adversary, O’Brien, and finally the true protagonist of the story, Big Brother, the omnipresent embodiment of the world in its totality. Or, if it was recast today, a blogger, a millennial in every hipster of the word, a priest (perhaps either Catholic or Scientology), and Steve Jobs.

People have said that Orwell was afraid of our privacy being taken away by force and had no idea that we would willfully give it away with things like Facebook and other social media sharing platforms or through voting and accepting security measures to “keep us safe” that forfeiting privacy and freedom But, I think, THAT was exactly how he thought it would happen. That they would be tricked and rewarded and scared into giving up what they hold dear and not just by their leaders but also by their friends that were duped as well.

For what I think of it as a book, for a deep subject it should be an easy read but that might be because it repeats it’s self a lot. So, if you don’t understand a concept you will have a second chance to wrap your head around it. But if I had do give any big criticism it is that when talk about Winston’s life as it does not relate directly to the rest of the world, it can drag a bit. Lucky, Orwell is more interested in the world than the characters and almost seems to have wanted to write something akin to Plato’s Republic but did not know how to do that so he did it in a more stranded novel form. Or maybe thought Winston, Julia, and O’Brien would be a guise in which the the message could exhibit itself to act as a focusing point for love, fear, and reverence, emotions which are more easily felt towards an individual than towards an idea. I personally like the book within a book style of writing. Something about a fictional nonfiction book really appeals to me. It happens in the book version of Starship Troopers, and in a movie called the Confederate States of America (it is done as a BBC documentary about a the south winning the civil war)

This is part review and part analysis because I do tend to ramble on. So if you do not want that here is your jumping of point.


The world of 1984 would be described by us a totalitarian, but by O’Brien as the exact opposite, English Socialism, and by the writer of a book within this book, Emmanuel Goldstein, as Oligarchical Collectivism, which I personally think is the closest. The politics, morality, and economics of Oceania are the main interest of the story of 1984. So much so that it required there to be another books within it; the above mentioned manifesto of Goldstein. One thing to note is that everything in 1984 is unreliable. Winston’s memories of his childhood before the revolution, news broadcast, O’Brien’s speeches on Party doctrine, and Goldstein’s accounts of the rise of the Party and how it appears to function; there is not outside the Party. Even the Victory Gin is not gin; it is Saké! It is also conceivable that Oceania is not bigger than England and the rest of the world is carrying on in the usual manner, similar to the North Korea situation.

There are three levels of society: the Inner Party about 2% of the population, the Outer Party about 13%, and ’the proles’ about 85%. Only Party members have the constant monitoring by the telescreens (a TV that watches back) and the Inner Party are the only ones “permitted” to turn them off for brief moments. The Party views the proles as energy to run society at best or slaves at worst. But it is not the kind of slavery that has chains. Throughout the book it is said if there is any hope to bring down the Party and Big Brother it lies in the proles, but it is also pointed out that the proles are kept too busy or otherwise entertain and preoccupy to revolt. They just don’t want to because from their view nothing is wrong. They go to work and get paid, come home, read a book or go to the bar, go to sleep and do it all again the next day. They live. Sure the conditions are not that great to our modern day western standards, but its seams that they live about an average life for someone in say, the industrial revelation or, well, Europe in the early ’40.

It actually looks like, to me, that the prole are the most free and it is the Outer Party that is the most oppressed and the Inner Party is somewhere in between. If anything can be believed there is no Capital of Oceania, and other than Big Brother (who I doubt is real) there is no true leader, and there are no laws. But as this is a Dystopia, something is wrong with all this freedom. It is an Idea that is in charge. I think at one time the revolution was a good thing and meant a lot of good for the world, a lot like in Animal Farm , it got perverted and out of hand. I think there is not government at all. I think it is everyone collectively, out of an imagined fear made manifest, doing what they think they have been told to do. Like the Borg or ants they do what they do because of the Collectivism part. I think the early years of the Party were so effective that they did away with there own founders and laws and now the Party only exists to exist.

O’Brien said the Party is “interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power.” I don’t think that is true particularly because of what he says later “the individual is only a cell? The weariness of the cell is the vigour of the organism. Do you die when you cut your fingernails?” it exist to exist and power is a byproduct. Your liver does not have high morals of keeping you alive and functions to do that; your lungs aren’t striving to impress your heart. They all are doing their own thing, oblivious to each other, and it happens to keep you alive. In the same way I think the various Ministries and organization do what they do because that is what they do. The Inner Party is no better off than the Outer Party in any meaningful way. And the proles care just as little about the Party members as the Party cares about them. If they are in hell, it is one of the Twilight Zone ironic hells of their own making.

I know this was long winded (this is actually the shorten version) and I apologies for that. Let’s just say that I am overcompensating for the fact that Cody does all the article and political ramblings on the website. I have more I could say, maybe there will be a tie-in segment in an upcoming episode?

I don’t know what all this says about me but I will leave you with a revelation that Winston had about the book he read that is both profound and one of the best and scariest things to think about when you read a book yourself or hear people talk about books they liked:

” The book fascinated him, or more exactly it reassured him. In a sense it told him nothing that was new, but that was part of the attraction. It said what he would have said, if it had been possible for him to set his scattered thoughts in order. It was the product of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you know already.”

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Ryan S. Brewer is the co-host and editor of the Bored Shenanigans podcast (when he releases one) available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of Brewer’s Shitty Writing very sporadically here or as episode descriptions. Also he has nothing else to enjoy anywhere else, but you can find Cody’s poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or the Faceyspace. 

Burmese Days Review

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“But the whole expedition -the very notion of wanting to rub shoulders with all those smelly natives -had impressed her badly. She was perfectly certain that that was not how white men ought to behave.”

 

Burmese Days was George Orwell’s first novel, published in 1934. Set in 1920s Burma it follows a timber merchant and the people that ripple in and out of his life. The motivations, while important are far less pertinent to this story than the interactions within it. This story does an excellent job showing what life was like for natives and Europeans living in imperialistic Burma.

The setting that Orwell builds here is fantastic. He goes to great pains to have the reader see what the interactions between the natives and the colonists are. It becomes clear that the colonists do not see the natives as equals, but rather tools and resources to be used to their own end. It also becomes clear as the novel progresses that Orwell loved Burma. His descriptions of the environment and the geography are so vibrant that it becomes clear that he truly loved it there.

The thing that I found most interesting in this novel was it’s ability to highlight the degrading British Empire. In this work it is obvious that years of rule by England have worn down the Burmese people. Corruption exists at a casual level as everyone is vying to gain a little bit more wealth or power. Though subtle and laced throughout, this theme shows early signs of what would become indicative of Orwell’s writing. He does a commendable job showing what a long period of rule from a far away state does to a group of people.

Overall, I enjoyed this book. It was simple to follow and while a bit dull in parts, the ability it had to keep the reader engaged. The infusion of Burmese culture never let you lose sight of the setting of the story and was tastefully sprinkled throughout. I read this book in about two days and found it to be worth the time spent. For those Orwell enthusiasts like myself, give Burmese Days a try.

 

“It is one of the tragedies of the half-educated that they develop late, when they are already committed to some wrong way of life.”

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

George Orwell Complete Poetry Review

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-…Nothing believing, nothing loving,
Not in joy nor in pain, not heeding the stream
Of precious life that flows within us,
But fighting, toiling as in a dream…-

 

I’ll be honest, this collection of poetry wasn’t what I expected. More accurately it wasn’t what I wanted it to be. I desperately wanted left leaning, anti-totalitarian verse draped in social satire. I wanted elegant lines questioning the very intention of imperialism. I wanted first hand experiences of humanity falling into mob mentality. I really wanted to fall in love with this book.  I wanted to be as infatuated by this collection as I’ve become with Orwell’s essays and novels. I wanted this to be the shining gem of Orwell September. I wanted this to be something, it was never going to be.

For a little background, this collection was published in October of 2015 after being withheld for many years by Orwell’s estate. By the author’s own admittance, he never held much fondness for his poetry.  This book gathers some of his earliest writings from his youth  all the way to his later life. It does a commendable job of prefacing them, so the reader can more fully appreciate the events of Orwell’s life. From the standpoint of historical interest and curiosity’s sake, it is fun to see how much his style evolved, but that is about where the fun ends. The poetry just isn’t very good.  In the words of  Dione Venable, the editor of this collection, “Orwell wasn’t a wonderful poet, but in his poetry he’s gloomy, he’s funny, he’s happy, he’s sad, and in the last things he wrote, you feel his pain.” As you read through it, you see him experimenting with  various styles and rhyme schemes but few ever seem to really resonate.

Now that the negatives are out of the way, there are a few pieces in this collection that are quite good.  In particular I enjoyed Ironic Poem About Prostitution and As One Non Combatant to Another. The dark satire that reverberates in these works is familiar to the fans of his writing. They provide a glimmer of what I had hoped for when I found this book. Other than a few lines from a smattering of poems, this entire collection left me feeling a bit flat. It was eighty two pages of mediocrity. I appreciated seeing another side of such a highly exalted author. I enjoyed seeing small shades of his excellent novels in these poems. Unless you’ve read everything else he’s ever written or your inquisitive nature just can’t let this one go, I would suggest you just pass on it. Sadly, this is the first Orwell I’ve ever read that I can’t really recommend.

 

 

Pagan
So here are you, and here am I,
Where we may thank our gods to be;
Above the earth, beneath the sky,
Naked souls alive and free.
The autumn wind goes rustling by
And stirs the stubble at our feet;
Out of the west it whispering blows,
Stops to caress and onward goes,
Bringing its earthy odours sweet.
See with what pride the the setting sun
Kinglike in gold and purple dies,
And like a robe of rainbow spun
Tinges the earth with shades divine.
That mystic light is in your eyes
And ever in your heart will shine.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

Animal Farm Review

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With Orwell September in full swing, how could we neglect one of his most well known works?  This novella takes place on a rural English farm in which animals begin a revolution to overthrow their oppressive farmer. Deeply symbolic and easy to follow, it is simple to see why Animal Farm is so highly regarded.

This novel was mandatory reading when I was in high school. I didn’t really understand or care for it then. It seemed highly overrated and somewhat stupid. I recall making ignorant, snarky comparisons to the movie Babe. The allegorical use of animals to the 1917 Russian Revolution and the Stalinist era that followed, didn’t do much for me. Looking back I feel this book was mostly presented as anti communist tome and the deeper issues inside it were outright ignored. I remember discussions about who each character represented, but it was taken with a misguided slant toward patriotism and not a study of political structure.

I feel one point my high school literature teacher missed was how good this book is at explaining how the state works to anyone. Written in a direct and easy to follow form, it does an commendable job of illustrating the cycle of tyranny. Showing the reader how honest, well meaning ideas are agreed upon and slowly manipulated by the powerful and intelligent over the less powerful and less intelligent. Good intentions are quickly forgotten when one group can gain at the expense of another. The social and political constructs in this book are so true to life that the reader is forced to draw parallels to the ones that surround them. 

Dystopian novels rarely show the decline and fall, instead you usually see society at the lowest form. Animal Farm takes great pains to highlight multiple instances in which you see the society breaking down. You feel the plight these animals suffer as more and more things are taken from them.Orwell pushes the reader to ask if the revolution was worth it, or if the animals were better off with the farmer in charge. It alludes to a multitude of political theories and schools of thought, plus highlights how many changes a charismatic leader can make.

This book is goddamn great, truly goddamn great. I rediscovered it a few years after high school and it has been one of my favorites since that time. You can read it in an afternoon  without trying too hard, but it is the sort of novel that stays with you. If you didn’t like it when it was a mandatory read, I believe it deserves another chance. With the upcoming election season be political, read some Orwell. I believe that you will truly enjoy the time spent. Animal Farm proves that while all books are equal, some are more equal than others.

 

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Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

Moments Like This Never Last

 

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The Misfits are the greatest band of all time. I can state this with utmost sincerity and fervent devotion. Their ability to blend horror themes with fast paced punk rock have made them musical icons. The fiend skull logo has become quite familiar and has snuck it’s way into multiple venues of pop culture. Even the those unfamiliar with the music will recognize the brand. As with any long lasting, group they will go through multiple incarnations. I’ve caught a lot of heat from purists for not decrying one “era” over another but honestly there is nary an “era” of their music I don’t enjoy. From the early 70s to the rebirth in the late 90s to the latest incarnation featuring just one founding member. They strike a part of my person that few other artists seem to. As the lineups have changed, I’ve followed any former member’s current project with interest simply because of their association with The Misfits. This band is infectious and fantastic.

Last Sunday, Denver’s Riot Fest was big news for any fan of The Misfits or any fan of punk rock in general. For first time in thirty three years the founding members of Glen Danzig, Jerry Only and Doyle Wolfgang Von Frankenstein ascended the stage. Accompanied on drums by Dave Lombardo of Slayer fame, the anxious crowd was stunned as they flawlessly performed twenty songs spanning their ‘77-’83 catalog. One of the most influential and charismatic punk bands of all time had returned to fill the world with their signature brand of macabre music. With this concert in Denver going so well there are already rumors of a full scale reunion tour happening.

This performance makes me exceptionally excited. I’ve followed the hype surrounding this reassembly with the kind of glee only a gushing by a punk rock fan boy can. Years of lawsuits and personal barbs thrown by band members at one another made any sort of reconciliation seem highly unlikely, yet here I sit glowing in the happy aftermath of a reunion. I desperately want a nationwide tour and a studio album and am I am giddy with the notion of seeing the original crew live on stage together. So few truly quintessential musicians pass through a given time period, but with such positive news coming from this year’s Riot Fest, the opportunity may be closer for us all.

If you find that your current music choices are lacking songs about vampires and Martians perhaps you should start growing your devil lock, get your fiend club membership card ready and enjoy some mighty fine Misfits here and here.

 
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Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

Shooting an Elephant Review

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George Orwell is a titan of literature. He has coined concepts and ideas that are so deeply embedded into popular consciousness we forget they haven’t always been there. Most of us know him as a novelist, but during his life his journalistic writing were his most well known. Around the Bored Shenanigans studio we are rabid Orwell fans and cite his works with far too much regularity. So for no particular reason we present, Orwell September. This month all of our Adult Book Reports will be reviews of Orwell works.

The first work I’m reading this month is one of his highest reviewed essays, Shooting an Elephant. This story follows an English police officer stationed in Burma who is called upon to shoot a mad elephant. While never directly stated, It is assumed the narrator is Orwell speaking from personal experience. That fact is disputed as no provable historical account of these events exist. In my opinion this is written with too much earnestness to be completely fictional.

On of my favorite things about George Orwell’s writing style is the sophisticated simplicity. If ever there was a master of doing more with less, it is him. In this essay, the events are neither complex nor cunning but with precision he shows the tension between the locals and the British occupiers. It forces the reader to examine the two clashing cultures and the results of the British Empire’s seizure of that area. It allows the reader to see the author’s true opinion of the totalitarian rule without ever directly saying it.

The climax of this essay is something to behold. It drives home the themes throughout in both a subtle and substantial way. It cleanly states the essay’s purpose whilst still forcing the reader to ask more questions. It using symbolism in all the best ways and ends with some stellar final lines of dialogue. I highly recommend this and clocking in at less that thirty minutes it is definitely worth your time.

 

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Check back next week as we sink our teeth into more George Orwell.

 

Read Shooting an Elephant free here.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

 

 

 

Anthems Aren’t Sacred

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I really don’t care about football. I really don’t care about the Superbowls or endorsement ads or deflated gates, I don’t care. Now if you took my lack of caring for that and quantified it exponentially, then you have how much I care about mainstream media’s opinion on things. Honestly, before the last few days I had never heard of Colin Kaepernick. I’m sure he is a fine athlete and worked hard to get his job, but I was as aware of him as he is of me. This is neither an indictment nor an endorsement of him remaining seated during the national anthem. He is exercising his free speech whilst those who are outraged and offended are exercising theirs. It’s America through and through, instant controversy over a meaningless game followed by reanalysis.

This latest fiasco is just one many where someone does the unexpected during a national anthem. Even the laziest Google search will corroborate that fact. People have been getting offended during America’s special song for so long. Somehow I doubt that Francis Scott Key wrote this song knowing the ire that would be raised by non participants or etiquette breakers. Beyond that, I highly doubt that he intended it be sung before every team sports event across the land. Does the audience there, eager to be entertained gain anything from it? Do we feel more patriotic afterwards? Does anyone really care? I think not, so I say we stop using it.

The national anthem at events is just one more piece of pomp and circumstance not necessary for anyone’s enjoyment of an event. The patrons are just there to have fun. Realistically it’s use is pretty inconsistent. It is used before every tee ball and pee wee soccer game but not before a sold out concert. It is sung with gusto during a parade, but not before a car auction. So why use it at all? If it is going to be a lighting rod for controversy, why not reserve it for political events and the like. Wheel out the anthem for big ceremonial events and not every trite, third tier semi pro ball game. Everyone just cooperates out of programming and routine. We put our hands over our hearts like our elementary teacher taught us to. It is just a red, white and blue lullaby for most people ready to see what they bought their tickets for.

I’m sure the ‘freedom isn’t free’ crowd will object to this. They believe that flag ought be worshipped and the scriptures of the anthem sung. Fine, exercise your fundamental human rights. Embrace your ruler. I just don’t think it matters at all. Patriotism isn’t mitigated by participation in a song. Stop using the anthem as a tool to provoke ostracism to those with different opinions. Stop forcing political agendas into our light-hearted entertainment. Stop assuming you know the founding father’s opinions on events this trivial. Just stop. Why don’t we just let the people get their popcorn and  and stop delaying the game. Why don’t we just accept that it wastes time and drags out the entire event? No one came to hear the national anthem. Let’s keep some perspective, it’s still just a guy sitting during a song.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

The Beautiful and the Damned Review

beautiful and the damned

 

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s second novel is a great read. It follows through the course of their relationship, from the joys of infatuation to the committed stages’ hardships. It uses the early 1900s cafe culture as an interesting backdrop and really allows the reader to see the complexity that exist with each character. Before I get rolling too deeply into this, one comparison must be made. This book is everything Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises wasn’t. As much as I love Hemingway, this story told a similar tale in a much more enjoyable and captivating way. Horrible to say, as I know these two authors had a deep dislike for one another.

This is my first exposure to Fitzgerald’s writings. He is much more well known for his masterwork, The Great Gatsby. While that novel does seem interesting, I found this recommendation on a list of most underrated books and I feel that is a fair estimate. If you are looking for a romantic comedy style story that could easily be adapted to a Meg Ryan movie, this isn’t what you want. If you are looking for a cynical and realistic portrayal of flawed and selfish people whose love for one another has to endure trials and upheaval, this is your book.

The author’s writing style is simple and beautiful.There are multiple quotable lines spread through the text I had a difficult time nailing down one. The tone is a strange poetic elegance I haven’t really encountered anywhere else. The way in which he so clearly and cleanly becomes the vessel through which his character’s speak is incredible. The effect that their environment of decadence and the social structure in which they reside becomes ever clearer as the novel progresses, but not distractingly so. The author balances the line of a morality tale and an enjoyable narrative in a way that is rarely seen, especially amongst current literature.

The major downside to this book is it really comes to a screeching halt near the middle, I actually took a few weeks to finish this one. I cared enough to return to it, something I rarely do when I abandon a book in the middle. I was grateful I finished it, because I got closure on the characters within. The committed reader could knock this out in a few days, but I think this is best kept as a bedside book. Something to enjoy a few chapters at a time over a longer duration otherwise it does become somewhat ponderous. Overall, I got a lot of entertainment out of this story. I really enjoyed Fitzgerald’s style of writing and think this is a good entry point into the man’s work. This was definitely worth the time spent.

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Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Your Heroes Were Human Once

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“When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” Those words from The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance felt very appropriate for this article. It seems that in any community there are always certain people whose reputation precedes them and are held up to a godlike standard. In the firearms community, some of those demi gods are Jeff Cooper, John Browning, Massad Ayoob and Elmer Keith.

We’re going to focus on Elmer Keith here. For those of you who aren’t the gun nerd that I am, Elmer Keith was a prolific firearms writer and enthusiast. He wrote for multiple firearms publications and had nine books published. He was instrumental in developing the .357 magnum, the .44 magnum and the .41 magnum. He developed the “Keith” style bullet which offers more reliable penetration for hunting applications. Over the tenure of his life, he influenced so many people and became known as quite the polarizing figure.

These are the blurb facts that I was familiar with. I knew the hit list of why he mattered, but didn’t know how he traveled down the path. I was pleasantly ignorant until I learned of this little episode. Elmer Keith was a novice reloader and while developing a powerful load for a Colt Single Action Army, it blew up on him.  In the man’s own words;  “When the gun rose from recoil of the first cartridge I unconsciously hooked my thumb over the hammer spur and thus cocked gun as it recovered from recoil. When I turned the next one loose I was almost deafened by the report and saw a little flash of flame. My hand automatically cocked gun and snapped again but no report. I stopped then knowing something was wrong. The upper half of three chambers was gone. Also one cartridge and half of another case. Also the top strap over cylinder. My ears were ringing otherwise I was all O.K.” (American Rifleman, August 15, 1925)

These are the little things that are glossed over by those who pray at the sanctuary of Elmer Keith.  No one mentions that as the catalyst that turned the man into the myth. No one ever said this rudimentary mistake began his journey down the path of becoming iconic. If someone had mentioned this to me, I guarantee I would have been far more interested in the man.  In the last few weeks, I have devoured vintage Elmer Keith articles and fallen in love with his brash style of writing. I have enjoyed his zest for life and his take no prisoners attitude. The man was extremely knowledgeable and has a great way of teaching the reader. I see that he was worth the hype.

Maybe I’m in the minority, but I like flaws. I gravitate to people who fight through the muck and fail. I need to know that you fucked up before you succeeded. I need to know of the faults to appreciate your accomplishments. If we will humanize our heroes and demote them from their gold plated altars, people might be more apt to appreciate them. They certainly won’t resent them or ignore them if they know they made the same errors we all do. I guess the takeaway is keep your idols in perspective. If you really want others to respect them the way you do, keep your starry eyed gushing to a minimum.

Need more? Ian at Forgotten Weapons has an excellent video showing the aftermath of the blown cylinder here. 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

The Four Dollar Pamphlet

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Fuck you, Michael de Bethencourt. Fuck you for calling Thirty Eight Tips For Better Snub Shooting a book.  Fuck you for not mentioning anywhere within that it is for new shooters. Fuck you for offering sparse technique, while still having an introduction talking about your skills and qualifications for writing such a pamphlet.

I don’t claim to know everything about shooting, if I did why would I purchase this literature? As a competent shooter looking to improve skills and hone the discipline of my defensive weapon, I expected more out of this. It spent more time on firearm and holster choices than on tactics. I wanted sight alignment tips, hand placement suggestions. Outside of an excellent page on reloading under stress, this was a terrible disappointment. All of the information in this booklet could have easily been found online. Thanks to a few videos from Jerry Miculek and Tom Gresham, I actually got the information I was seeking.

I tried to be objective about this, but as recommended as the author came I couldn’t help but be annoyed. I’m believe that my next foray into this type of information will be from the likes of Ed McGivern or Ed Lovette who actually offer true advice. I should have been more wary, but somehow I still have a naive hope when it comes to the firearms community. I suppose from here on out, I’ll have to be far more selective. It surprises me how small the selection of things for those trying to move from intermediate toward expert. I just wanted to get real tips on trigger control and increase my accuracy on follow up shots, but instead I wasted my time and money.

Moral of the story, pick your advice and educators with more care. Remember that book apparently is open to interpretation. Remember that just because you enjoy a certain hub of information doesn’t mean you will not get conned. Remember that just because something comes from a website called snubtraining.com, doesn’t mean it will offer any skills on snub nose revolvers. Most importantly remember, fuck Michael de Bethencourt, because he’ll charge you four dollars for a pamphlet.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

The Killing Joke Review

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Alan Moore’s The Killing Joke is one of the best comics ever written. Simply put if you enjoy comics at all you need to read it. If you haven’t quickly abandon this review and find a copy of it. This book h highlights everything good about the medium of comics in the same way that Sin City and The Watchmen do. It is one of the definitive works ever put to page.

In the latest episode of Podcast, Brewer and I reviewed the newly released animated version. As good as that movie captures the comic, I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is Alan Moore at his gritty best and the combination of Brian Bolland and John Higgins art is stellar. Telling an origin story for the enigmatic Joker and having him being a cunning and vicious is a bold choice. This is R rated Joker at his absolute best. Moore does an excellent job of blurring the line between the hero and the villain. He forces the reader to wonder how different these two really are and as stated in the narrative, all it takes is one bad day to change your life forever.

This book has been influential on a number of interpretations of Batman, everyone from Christopher Nolan, to Tim Burton and Mark Hamil citing how much they took from this comic. It is fairly obvious the critically acclaimed Arkham video games have taken many cues from it. From its’ examination of a well known character to its’ morbid subject matter, this is a fantastic comic. This book is worth all the hype, all the accolades and I imagine that it will perpetually be one of the essential Batman story arcs.

 

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Enjoy the full digital comic here.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

 

 

Red Harvest Review

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How do you like your crime novels prepared? Hard boiled detectives? Corrupt public officials? Rival gangs gunning for control of a town, perhaps? If so, Dashiell Hammett’s Red Harvest does all those things and more. This detective story is so engrossing and the characters so interesting, I cannot recommend it highly enough. Goddamn, did I like this book.

This is my first journey into any of Hammett’s work and I was quite impressed. I don’t know the last time I enjoyed character dialogue as much as this. It was easy to follow, but still smart and witty in beautiful way. Crisp transitions allowed the plot to cruise along without any clutter or confusion and by doing so, it forced the reader to keep reading. I found myself having a difficult time leaving this book alone as I desperately wanted see how this story would end.

I really enjoyed having a protagonist with anonymity. The Continental Op is believable as a detective, I loved the intimate little details of each person encountered. It gives you a true feeling of who each character was. From crooked lawyers to roommates with breathing disorders, you start to know them the same way that the detective does.  Another thing I enjoyed was seeing how the violent environment wears on the prominent figure’s mental state. As the mystery begins to unravel and the detective gets closer to tying up his loose ends, you want to see how he will triumph over the turbulent town in which he is currently inhabiting.

Go read this book. It has an inventive and well thought out plot that is executed by good characters fueled with reasonable motives. This book is so very worth your time and energy. Though it doesn’t have the same name dropping appeal as The Maltese Falcon, I can’t imagine there being a much more enthralling example of this author’s writing style. This book was highly suggested to me by one of my readers and I must echo that sentimental with full gusto. Goddamn, did I like this book and I think you will too.

 

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Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

I Stand W/ Milo

milo

I stand with Milo. This is not a popularity contest nor is this a trend I am band wagoning onto, I truly stand with Milo. For the unfamiliar, Milo Yiannopoulos is a journalist known for his controversial viewpoints covering the gamut from feminism to Islam to political correctness. He is currently being lambasted by the mainstream media over spreading hate speech and is one of the only accounts permanently banned from Twitter. He is a lightning rod for free speech and a social justice warrior’s nightmare. Goddamn, am I a fan of his.

Milo is what he is. He doesn’t just poke the bear, he body slams the bear.  He has become something of cult figure in the liberty movement by just being honest and speaking his mind. By daring to go against left leaning ideologies and point out the authoritarianism often represented in their actions, he has made so, so many enemies. I can’t ever remember anyone being so clearly hated by so many groups for merely using their words. People like Milo point out all the flaws in fundamentalism and encourage the rest of to advocate copious amounts of liberty.

Free speech was never meant to protect only the things you want to hear. It’s architecture was to allow those with dissenting and reprehensible ideas to bellow aloud. Those so quick to crucify people like Milo are the same ones who would defend him if he was advocating for their specific viewpoints. Honestly, I don’t really care if I agree or disagree with Milo or anyone on every single one of their ideologies. I do; however, vehemently promote their right to say whatever they feel needs to be said. I do not condone this or any other witch hunt aimed at destroying someone for voicing their beliefs. I will continue to advocate and support unfiltered expression, because it is the right thing to do. I will continue to stand with Milo.

 

Experience the controversy first hand

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Heart of Darkness Review

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Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness is a contemplative and brooding work set in the early 1900s. It follows Charles Marlow on his search for the infamous ivory trader known as Kurtz. As Marlow gets closer to finding Kurtz, his enigma grows exponentially.

It is almost impossible to discuss this novella without bringing up the controversy surrounding it. It is very of it’s time and portrays native Africans in less than a shining light. They are portrayed as savage, second class citizens who only exist to serve the white Europeans. I certainly see where this opinion comes from, yet I feel that it only adds to the brutality that bubbles under the surface of every single passage in this work. This is a morosely dense tale of a man losing touch with his humanity, so I think this work portrays a callous honesty rarely seen.

I’ve never experienced a book that does such a phenomenal job of pushing the reader’s yearning to meet a character. Conrad cannot be commended enough for the way he makes you want to meet Kurtz. His legend grows to a breaking point, then when you meet him you are not disappointed. Foreshadowing has never been more perfect than it is in this book. Kurtz steals the show and the cavalcade of insanity that surrounds him makes him both indescribably eerie and utterly fascinating.

All in all this work is very worth your time. It took me almost a week to read this book, but it is deals with such heavy subject matter breaks are very necessary. I don’t know how much re-readability there is in a novella like this, but I strongly believe that everyone should encounter this at least once. It is an enthralling tale that had been adapted multiple times to other forms of media. From films like Apocalypse Now to video games like Far Cry 2 and Spec Ops: The Line this story continues to show it has a timeless appeal that is easily adapted and still very entertaining.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Whiskey With Kerouac

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I got shitfaced with Jack Kerouac last night. Home alone and with no real desire to accomplish anything, I drank neat rye whiskeys and read Scattered Poems. For those unfamiliar, Scattered Poems is a collection of vulgar and visceral poetry from the author’s travels across America. It is excellent in every meaning of that word, but I’m not really here to discuss that. I am here to encourage you to remember to live life in your way. I want you to stop and enjoy the whole experience. To remember to be more than just be acquainted with what sings to the muse within you. To taste the entire encounter complete with inspiration, love, joy and rage.

Sometimes, you have to spurn responsibilities and follow your own agenda. Sometimes you have to do the impractical thing that feels right in that moment. Sometimes, you should make that last cocktail when you’re already on the edge of drunk. Sometimes you should eat that last piece of cake. Sometimes you should make conversation with a complete stranger. Sometimes you should walk barefoot in the grass and look at the stars. Sometimes, you should make some decisions in the now and enjoy life for the luscious mystery that lies within.

 

Reality will always be right there waiting for you when you return from your chosen sabbatical. It vigilantly stalks you eager to present you with a new list of demands. Ii will meet with higher tolls and more stringent responsibilities. It will take your spirit and rob your very essence if you allow it. It is imperative that we realize that we are so much more than our agendas and professions allow us to be. We are a vast conglomerations of hope, dream and desires. It is vital to the human condition that we feel and question and contemplate. It is vital that we do not lose touch with the impulses of our imagination. We must continue to wonder, or truly all is lost.

 

 

I encourage all of my illustrious readers to enjoy some of Mr. Kerouac’s fine writing here.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reviewing T.S. Eliot’s The Wasteland

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T.S. Eliot’s The Wasteland is a long form, four hundred thirty four line poem divided into five parts. Written in 1922, it is waist deep in references to other pieces of literature and in his notes the author proudly cites his influences. It tells the basic legend of the holy grail interwoven with the author’s own conjectures and themes. Eliot switches narrators and shifts from philosophy to satire, making it somewhat difficult to follow. Do yourselves a favor and get a copy of this book with annotations, without them you will be lost in the weeds and curious as to the intentions of this poet.

I feel that parts four and five, Death by Water and What the Thunder Said are my favorite sections of this poem, mostly because they are the easiest to follow. Maybe it’s heresy, but I feel the entire work would have benefited from being a collection of poems as opposed to one long poem. The loose connection maintained throughout the text makes this somewhat difficult to comprehend and causes the reader’s experience to suffer

Overall, this is a great work. My major issues with it revolve around the inaccessibility this will exhibit to some readers. It’s a dense poem, that is hard to consume in large bites and most certainly is not a casual read. I read it twice with the annotations and a study guide as to not miss anything. Even with all that it is well worth your time if you’re willing to put in the extra effort. It’s an intense book, but the author’s talented word structure is unmatched. Often touted as one of the great poems of the twentieth century, this poem certainly isn’t for the faint of heart.  

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Bookshelf Memories

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My wife and I just recently moved and while reorganizing things I found an extremely important totem from the past. The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry is one of the most important books in my personal library. Not because it holds any collector’s value or even because it’s my favorite book, it is simply because it’s an amazing reminder of a chance taken. It’s one of those valued pieces of pure sentimentality.

I had a spectacular English teacher during my junior year of high school. She was one of those rare educators that honestly gave a shit and put out genuine effort. Before entering her classroom doors, I didn’t even really care to read and really didn’t see the purpose of literature. Mrs. Smith turned my world upside down by showing me the importance of it all. Her curriculum focused on creative writing and reading comprehension. She believed that everyone enjoyed reading, the trick was finding what appealed to the individual. Her approach was one that I hadn’t experienced before that and I bought in completely. 

My world was truly turned on it’s side when Mrs. Smith started the section on poetry. Seeing that everyone and everything has poetry in it revolutionized my thought process. She saw how much I enjoyed reading the works of authors like Dylan Thomas and Edgar Allan Poe. She also recognized  much I enjoyed the release granted by writing putting my feeling down on paper. She was an endless fountain of encouragement, pushing me to enter poetry contests, constantly printed off poems from a variety of authors for me to read and offered an abundant amount of constructive criticism on my writing.

One day after class, she was going over one my poems with me and she handed me Alan Kaufman’s Outlaw Bible of American Poetry. It was a vast collection with poems from the likes of Jack Kerouac to Patti Smith to Tupac Shakur. It showed me how that, in poetry there are no rules. You are given uncompromising freedom to say what you want. I’d never read anything like it and I knew from that moment on, I would be writing poetry.

This book, those authors and that teacher successfully pushed me to be a writer. I so deeply appreciate a teacher taking a chance on a misguided kid and showing me an entire world of art I didn’t know about. So many of the things I value now were heavily influenced by Mrs. Smith back then. She was a phenomenal teacher who I’ll continue to cherish. Her best intentions and eye opening lessons will continue to dwell within the pages that well worn book upon my book shelf.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his articles here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

 

 

 

Cody’s Most Embarrassing Moment

A bet is a bet. For those of you who haven’t listened to Episode 110 of the Bored Shenanigans Podcast(Available via iTunes, Stitcher and this very website), a wager was made on the last episode. The details are in the episode but I, Cody Jemes lost. In doing so, had to publish an article retelling my most embarrassing moment. It is hard to imagine how such could exist.In co-hosting an online talk show for almost three years, I have revealed many shameful truths that long time listeners are too bashful to recall. I have retold many a tale of my face palming failings and moments of unfiltered stupidity. Those are mere child’s play to what I have for you here. Without further ado, Bored Shenanigans presents Cody’s Most Embarrassing Moment.

Let me take you back to a simpler time. A time before smart phones and reliable wifi signals. A time before tablets and net books. A time when one was forced to download their desired media onto a hard drive if they wanted to take it with them. A time when bulky laptops occupied college students back packs and their battery life was paltry at best. Now in these bygone days of yore, I was a full time overnight employee and a full time college student. I drifted in and out of poor decisions with great regularity, but truly on this day I would out do myself.

The campus I went to opened at seven AM around the time I was finishing my overnight shift. I would often arrive right as the doors opened and the halls were often quite vacant. On this particular day, I felt a need to release some tension before my classes and I secured a safe spot in the men’s room. After some quick reconnaissance work I realized that I was truly alone. I was a man alone with just his lust and downloaded library of erotic entertainment. What could possibly go wrong?  I set up my station, selected my finest adult video, plugged in my headphones and began to enjoy myself. As things escalated and intensified I proceeded with the normal course of action. My fatal flaw was the volume of the video overpowered the volume of my surroundings.

Whilst I was engaged with myself I didn’t hear a knock on the door of the cleaning woman. I certainly didn’t hear her ask if the bathroom was empty. More importantly than that, I was so overcome with my initial desire, I neglected to close the stall door. All these thing culminated in a quick and sorrowful turn of events. As I looked up I saw this poor woman, having just discovered me mid coitus with myself. She exclaimed “Sorry” as I violently shuffled to hide my shame. My laptop crashed to the ground, my headphones pulled out to reveal the sounds of hardcore pornography, I struggled to gather my belongings and my dignity in a losing effort while I vacated that bathroom.

After the woeful event I went and found a quiet corner to hid in my humiliation and in a futile attempt to collect myself. The cornucopia of poor judgments overflowed onto me with unrelenting ferocity. I was a moron. I tried as hard as I could to allow time to pass with some semblance of normalcy. I assumed my foolish behavior would be forgotten as there were only two witnesses.I thought things would be forgotten. Not so much.

I attended that college for two more years and would sporadically see the poor custodian who caught me in the act. I tried with all my might to avoid eye contact with her, but when her eyes found mine she would shake her head with disgust. There is no escape from chagrin so loathsome. To that woman, I am that harrowing tale of what to fear when walking into a men’s bathroom. In her eyes I am perpetually that slumped over pervert who was jacking it for all I was worth in the public restroom.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans podcast listen to more of his botches on iTunes and Stitcher. Read his not so self deprecating articles here. This deviant also writes poetry, see that here  or download his debauchery filled e-book hereBe sure heckle him on social media via Twitter or Facebook.

 

Best Supporting TV Character Quotes

A television show is only as strong as the supporting cast. Those characters that waft through the scenes and occasionally steal the show with nuggets of truth. They can offer a bit of knowledge, humor or insight that the main characters cannot always offer. Rank This! Dusts itself off to present the Top Twelve Quotes By TV’s Supporting Cast

12)

I’m getting my cheating out of the way early on here. MASH and Scrubs are similar shows and both excel at comedic timing, their casts are superb and I couldn’t pick my favorite here.

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“In the end, when Mr Foster started coughing up blood the on-call surgeon was stuck in traffic, the nursing staff was busy losing the lottery, his original doctor was thanking a garbage man, and the covering physician was incapacitated. And what was Mr Forster doing? He was dying in the hands of the Interns!” -Dr. Kelso

This quote embodies the entire premise of Scrubs by highlighting the hardships medical interns endure whilst pointing out the importance of vigilance when you are in a position of authority for someone else’s life.

&

MASH

“ Hear ye, Hear ye, it’s 0700 and all is hell. Incoming wounded, folks.”-PA Announcer

The PA announcer is the unsung hero of MASH. His insightful quips show that the best way to deal with the hellacious atmosphere of the Korean War is with humor. A strategy the show’s main character’s implement quite effectively.

11)

married with children
  [singing]”Bundy the no-man / He’s as bald as he can be. With hair in his nose and rot on his toes / He’s as bald as he can be; Bundy the no-man / He’s as bald as he can be/He’s into old age, making minimum wage / He’s as bald as he can be.” -Marcy, Jefferson, Kelly and Bud

Al Bundy’s world is one of sarcasm and self deprecation. All the character’s in Married with Children are equally terrible, but underneath the well timed bards they love each other. The above quote/song is my favorite because Al’s his best friend and kids join in with his nemesis, Marcy to make fun of him. We’ve all been there.

10)

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“Bill!! Bill, you have to be the stupidest man on the planet to think this is a good idea! Have you seen what you’re wearing?! That outfit makes you look like a sequined train wreck! Look at you!! You’re part of a twelve-headed Jackass! This chorus is the feces that is produced when shame eats too much stupidity! You people make me envy the deaf and the blind!”-Dale Gribble

Dale has some real gems throughout all thirteen seasons of King of The Hill. His crazed conspiracy theories and pieces of advice range from fanciful to deadly accurate. He is a buffoon, but when his long time friend Bill is making a very poor decision he delivers an honest tirade that helps him see his error.

9)

butters
“I’m not gonna be confused anymore just because you say I should be! My name is Butters, I’m eight years old, I’m blood type O, and I’m bicurious! And even that’s okay! Because if I’m bicurious, and I’m somehow made from God, then I think your GOD must be a little bicurious himself!” -Butters

Trey Parker and Matt Stone of South Park are absolutely brilliant. The way they blend satirical humor with current events is otherworldly. The above quote is near the conclusion Season 11, Episode 2 where through various misunderstanding his parents send him to a Christian camp to stop his homosexual urges.

8)

gunslinger
“I..Am…Sorry” -Rico

Gunslinger Girl is supremely heartbreaking and engrossing beyond all measure. For the unfamiliar, it is about a government organization that using cyberly enhanced adolescent girls as assassins. It explores the human nature through little girls, the above quote is said by Rico after she meets a boy and is forced to kill him to follow protocol and maintain anonymity. The majority of the episode is her contemplating her new friend and developing a crush on him. The conclusion makes it all the more saddening when the audience sees the things she will be without as a member of The Social Welfare Agency.

7)

pam

“You’re so hot for him I could reheat this chili in your cooch, We gonna make some cooch chili, or what?” -Pam

Pam is easily my favorite character in Archer. In an environment of spycraft and secrets she is wildly inappropriate and completely honest. The characters are all horribly self centered, but they begrudgingly look out for one another. The above quote is reference to Lana and Sterling’s on again off again romance. Everyone can see their affections, but Pam is the only one bold enough to ask about their relationship directly.

6)

teddy

“Somebody threw a snow cone at my windshield today. I thought I hit a rainbow.It was terrifying.”-Teddy

Teddy is that overly eager friend we’ve all had. Bob’s Burgers number one customer, he has a story or opinion on anything. His dimwitted attempts at wit deliver existentialism and thoughts he never intended. His good intentions are often complicate the situation in this family drama.

5)

g'kar

“I have seen what power does, and I have seen what power costs. The one is never equal to the other.” -G’Kar

The ensemble cast of this Babylon 5 make it difficult to decide between who is support players. G’Kar really steals the show as he transforms from proud warrior to humble spiritualist through the course of the series. He has many thoughtful quotes, but this one is a recurring theme for the duration of the entire show.

4)

jayne

“Ain’t logical. Cuttin’ on his own face, rapin’ and murdering – Hell, I’ll kill a man in a fair fight… or if I think he’s gonna start a fair fight, or if he bothers me, or if there’s a woman, or if I’m gettin’ paid – mostly only when I’m gettin’ paid. But these Reavers… last ten years they show up like the bogeyman from stories. Eating people alive? Where’s that get fun?” -Jayne

Jayne is the ultimate opportunist, but his assessment of the reavers in Firefly is easily my favorite. His truthful retelling of the carnage and fear they bring is especially revealing by a character who has been know to be less than truthful. When someone who is a much of a bad ass as Jayne expresses fear, you know that author of that fear is something truly reprehensible.

3)

peanut

“The universe is a cruel, uncaring void. The key to happiness isn’t the search for meaning, It’s keeping yourself busy with unimportant nonsense and eventually you’ll be dead.” -Mr. Peanutbutter

Bojack Horseman is dark comedy if ever there was dark comedy. The introspection the characters show toward themselves and others is refreshing. Though it can be nihilistic, I appreciate the candor this show exhibits. Especially when it comes from the perpetually upbeat mouth of Mr. Peanutbutter.

2)

red

“Because no matter how hard you try and how much we want it, there’s the people who serve the bread, and the people who eat the bread!” -Red

Orange Is The New Black is on fire right now. Just released season four, it deserves all the hype it gets. It shows the struggles of women in a penitentiary and studies human nature. The Russian head of the prison kitchen express her bleak outlook of the planet and her place on that planet. Harsh words for a harsh world that characterize the entire series.

1)

deadwood

“But I should say too that, in these rooms just this afternoon, such displeasure brought me near to murdering the sheriff and… raping Mrs. Ellsworth. I have learned through time, Mr. Tolliver, and as repeatedly seem to forget, that whatever temporary comfort relieving my displeasure brings me, my long-term interests suffer. My proper traffic is with the earth. In my dealings with… people, I ought solely have to do with niggers. And whites who obey me like dogs.” -George Hearst

It had to be Deadwood. Only a show as phenomenal as it could so accurately and completely make a villain despised.  In a frontier habitat of muddled morality only a megalomaniacal and menacing figure like George Hearst could stand out. It is the greatest example I’ve ever seen of enemies uniting to snuff out the greater evil, whom they cannot conquer. For my money he is the best villain in the best TV series ever written.

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

Rip Van Winkle Review

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Washington Irving’s Rip Van Winkle is embedded deeply in the fabric of American culture. Along with Johnny Appleseed, Paul Bunyan and Pecos Bill, this character has been referenced in popular media for nearly two centuries. This story takes place during the time of the American Revolutionary War and follows a man after he drinks some home brewed liquor from a mysterious stranger and awakens eighteen years later.

The changes experienced by the protagonist during a relatively short period of time are cataclysmic. The status of the world he knew is spun out of control. He is forced to quickly try to understand the manner in which his surroundings had changed. In short order, he learns his wife had died, his friends are gone and his children are adults. Along with these revelations, he is also declared a traitor as he supports the government that he knew to be in power.

This story plays on your emotions and you see the drastic shift Van Winkle must digest. Though the evidence is there, he has difficulty accepting how different everything is. He has missed multiple family moments and memories, time forgot him. Van Winkle must also digest the stigma of his own reputation. Having just disappeared without explanation his family and neighbors assumed thought the worst of him for almost two decades.

The most enjoyable part of this story is easily the political implications. The average man, ignorant to current events unknowingly supporting the former regime is met with violent rebuke. The idea that in a few years, someone can shift from a loyal patriot to an enemy is fascinating. It further highlights the consequences of having missed so much in a short period of time. This forces the reader to capitalize on the time they have and not waste it. Irving does an excellent job pushing so much thought into such a short story. This is well worth your time clocking in at under thirty minutes, it is deserving of reading and continual adaptations.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow Bored Shenanigans on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Mission Statement

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Sometimes, I think my hopes and dreams are so far beyond me that I want to scream. I can see them, but either my lack of focus or work ethic seems to keep them unattainable. Swimming upstream against a tide of daily hardships seems to keep them at bay. That being said, before you abandon this page mid sentence hold on. I know you can’t take another one of those late-twenties, who am I and what do I want to do with my life types of articles. That territory is well trod by Buzzfeed and Salon. Lord knows there are plenty of shitty indie bands shitting out their shitty post grad blues feelings all over perfectly innocent listeners right now.I’m not trying to add to their ranks but instead highlight a particular area in which I routinely fail. In reality, this is meant as a way for you to learn from my mistake.

I take on more than I ever hope to accomplish,I’ll admit it. I dream way too big, procrastinate a bit too much and then burn myself out with overzealous intentions and piss poor time management. I want so badly to be successful in a realm that doesn’t involve my day job, yet I will give the aforementioned day job the bulk of my effort. I just need to make a living, I could probably scrape by at work and actually pursue my side projects to a finish line. I have a difficult time balancing my priorities and I fear when I’m in my golden years I’ll realize that I didn’t do anything on my own terms.

Don’t get me wrong, sacrifice is a part of life and concessions must be made. Sometimes you have to work overtime instead of record a podcast episode. Sometimes, you have to be there at 5 AM to pull the lever instead of outlining a novella you promised your wife you’d write. Sometimes, there isn’t time to just make the final draft of your second poetry e-book. Sometimes only sometimes. More often than not though I find myself agreeing to this things, these distractions when I could just as easily not do them. The Earth will continue to spin and life will go on if I invested in my own efforts as opposed to laboring for someone else’s. They didn’t really need me as bad as I needed them to be my excuse.

This isn’t meant to be a statement of arrogance or legacy. I don’t expect world renown receptions nor am I’m ever going to be a Saul Williams or a Voltaire. I don’t intend to revolutionize the world, but goddamn it I should be using the few things I enjoy and have some ability at more often. I should be doing more with the talent I have instead of trying to not upset the daily humdrum. I should dedicate time to improving my abilities for me. I should have so much content for those who visit our small hovel of content distribution on the big bad Internet. I should be doing so much more.

I wrote a list of goals for the first time in my life. I have a three year plan. I have self imposed deadlines and projects. I’m going to make this work in spite of the same flaws that have haunted me my entire existence. I’ve told my wife about long term goals and am now accountable to someone for them. I’ve set meeting dates for creative collaborations. For the first time in a long time, I’m not feigning effort. For the first time in a long time I’m honestly trying.

Trite as it may sound, I implore you to do better than me. Embrace your entrepreneurial spirit and creativity. Bare your soul. Get that promotion at work, talk to that handsome fella, start or update that blog, get that certification or weave that blanket. Just go forth and grab whatever has been hanging over your head. Do the work. Trudge and struggle along with me. Don’t you dare make me fucking do this alone.

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

 

My Problems With Net Neutrality

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Congratulations, we all fell for it.  With websites from here, there and all over pleading for us to support Net Neutrality. Politicians and news anchors clamored that this is a much needed regulation. Well it’s official as of June 16th, the FCC Net Neutrality agreement was upheld in Federal Appeals Court. We all win, the Internet is no longer a luxury, it is now regulated as a utility. We can binge watch YouTube and Hulu without interrupted streams.

Net Neutrality was upheld as part of Title II of the Federal Communications Act of 1934. This act was originally designed around phone lines that transports only one type of data. Since the Internet moves so many types of data, to restrict everything on the same plateau eliminates the quality of service currently used. Restricting internet service providers in this way eliminates their ability to offer multiple speeds for their customers and removes the opportunity for them to prioritize the available assets as needed. This will force smaller service providers to new standards they may not be able to handle and regulates ISPs business models in a way that will make it harder to serve their customers.

The implications of how Net Neutrality will impact Internet users is important. These includes the Internet being subject to regulation by the Federal Communications Commission. The truest form of deregulated media may be a thing of the past. Independent content creators could potentially be fined or subject to the current regulations of terrestrial broadcasts.  Another implication of Net Neutrality is having service providers submit how their data is being dispersed and that it is being done according to this agreement. While I know that the Congressional push back has been against the violation of privacy, I am more worried about the cost involved. The expansion of administration or the creation of some agency to ensure that the dictums are met . Regardless, we will all pay for this. An additional concern is that Title II allows regulated utilities to be put under Eminent Domain.

Net Neutrality is unnecessary and overreaching. It chokes the free market and will only cost more money to everyone involved. From businesses to Internet users to taxpayers. Through the use of misleading language, this act will be harmful long term. I oppose this entire thing and I hope that it will be appealed in the Supreme Court. Ideally, this is something that will go away, but my gut feeling is it will haunt Americans the way the Patriot Act has.

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast available via iTunes and Stitcher. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book hereBe sure to follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

 

White Fang Review

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Jack London’s White Fang is an excellent story. It tells the tale of a wolf born in the wild and follows his journey as he is domesticated during the Alaskan gold rush. It blends the savagery of the environment with the harshness of human nature. Seeing mankind from the eyes of the animal forces you to reevaluate your own actions.

The author is impeccable at capturing the spirit of such a unforgiving place. His own personal experiences while being in the Klondike come through in the text. His reverence and respect for the Alaskan territory and the culture reverberates with every page. He surrounds the reader with the bitter north area in a unique and very memorable way. By forcing you into this world, he makes you examine your own hardships and see the change in society as time has advanced. It provides a unique snapshot for a period in time where only the strong willed would survive.

One thing I particularly enjoyed about this story is that it is almost the inverse of his book, The Call of The Wild. This is a method I wish more authors would use. Seeing both sides of the journey from wild to domestic really allows the readers an opportunity to get context for both stories. This a particularly creative idea and it forces those who enjoyed these writing to revisit the other texts. It is such a fascinating world that is cultivated, I have a hard time comparing it to much else I’ve ever read. I truly enjoyed this book and I would love to explore other works by Jack London. With the fast read time and captivating content, this is very much worth your time.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book here.Be sure to follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

 

 

 

 

Thanks Dad

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It’s Father’s Day. So get your traditional funny gifts out and buy a greeting card. I know it’s trite and well worn to celebrate this holiday for the sake of celebrating it. I thought I’d attack it with sentimentality. Saddle up, I thought I’d share my thoughts on my father with our illustrious listening audience.

Thanks for everything dad. You’ve dealt with me being difficult for a long time. As both my wife and friends can attest, I’m an asshole. I know during the most rebellious parts of my youth i amplified that trait to nearly unbearable levels. Thank you for taking that with a grain of salt.

You have been such a positive influence on me. You have pushed me to challenge myself and be self sufficient. You always encouraged critical thinking, even if it resulted in a conclusion you weren’t crazy about. Your advice has always been well grounded and you’re my go to phone call when I need another idea or opinion. I know I owe my sense of humor and deep love of sarcasm to you. You’ve been an astounding example of what a father and man should be.

I sincerely appreciate all that you’ve done
So to all fathers of who listen to Bored Shenanigans, who fathered listeners of Bored Shenanigans or to those who are using Bored Shenanigans as fuel while you and your partner create something to father,  thank you.

Happy Father’s Day

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. Be sure to follow him on Twitter at @boredshenanigan. Stay tuned for more articles.

Quick, Everyone Chime In!

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The tragic part of a tragedy is the victims seem to take second place. Nobody really gives a fuck about those affected. Sure, we all feign solidarity, we all wish well, political figures stand in front of podiums and make claims and legislation. Leaders of communities demand action for whatever has happened all the while those who really suffer seem to get lost in the shuffle.

The incident in Orlando has saturated conversations, social media, and all forms of news. Things like this just magnify everyone’s agenda. These things just make people do more of whatever they do. Whatever sacred cow those people or agencies possess, they just do more of that. Anti groups do more of that, disenfranchised groups push to be more accepted, all members of a certain faith are expected to answer for the actions of one individual and any number of other assemblage condemn or begin to fight for their own agenda. Not to mention the multitude of radical fringe organization that will condone the architects of the tragedy.

I can’t claim perfection, I have dabbled in hindsight just as much as everyone else. I have piggy backed on travesties for the sake of proving a point. If only this or if only that, the situation could have been different. I’ve encouraged people to read these statistics and facts that reflect my opinions and beliefs.

During this cavalcade of lobbying and motive pushing people still are suffering. Families, friends and those directly impacted are experiencing unfathomable loss. They are not comforted or allowed to grieve in peace. Their own personal hell is analyzed into a million of “what if?” scenarios. When lives are taken, we owe it to one another to find a solution to the problem. Not the kind of solution that pushes legislation, reinterprets laws and ultimately limits freedoms.

The focus during some type of disaster should be far more introspective. We need a renaissance that allows us to mourn the dead and comfort their families simply because it is the right thing to do. To objectively look at the situation and find a way to teach the next generation that hate only causes problems, it never solves them. We need to foster an environment where differences are tolerated and critical thinking is promoted. More than anything, we need to stop making reactionary judgments and instead just try to be better people.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book here.

 

Review of Catcher in the Rye

Catcher-in-the-rye-2

 

I’ve tried with this series to look at things objectively and from a entertainment mindset. I am not able to do that with the following review and my bias is clearly shown. With that in mind I present you with my review of Catcher in the Rye.

J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye is one of the only books I’ve ever vowed to never read again. Now I’ve read it twice. I’m a sadist. This book has to inspire more whiny emo band lyrics than any other source. It is dreadful. For those of you who weren’t forced to read this book in high school, it’s about Holden Caulfield and the days following his expulsion from a prep school. It is often praised as a love letter to New York City, showing the vibrant and colorful nature of the city. Holden is often referenced as a symbol of teenage rebellion and angst, capturing the feeling we all had in high school. This book has been banned multiple times for the language and its’ reference in several crimes.

I’ll start off with the positives, I love the style of writing Salinger implements here. The narrative, places you precisely where the protagonist is and allows the reader to see through their eyes and understand their handling of every situation. The author’s concise and well executed methods keep the book easy to navigate and allows the reader to quickly digest every instance.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, fuck Holden Caulfield. As a matter of fact, fuck anyone who claims this as a piece of art that shouldn’t be besmirched. This book is one of the most arduous and least enjoyable things I’ve ever read. If it is meant to be an indictment of adolescents or force you to hate all spoiled teenagers, job well done.

I cannot be alone in this, as a point of experiment, I had my wife try to read this book and she was done after about three chapters. It is a ponderous read, filled with self indulgent whimpers by the main character. He is a walking buzz kill, unhappy by every single aspect of his life and when presented with an opportunity to improve it he just complains all the more.

I hated this book. I found little enjoyment from it outside the narrative used the brevity in which I was able to complete it. What confounds me more that anything is how this book is held in such high esteem. The pedigree of excellence heaved upon this work blows my mind. Maybe I’m too dim witted to understand the implications inside it’s covers, but this goddamn book holds no enjoyment for me.

I cannot and will not recommend this book. If it were just a story I didn’t enjoy, I’d happily tell you. Literature is subjective, I understand that. The amount of universal praise this work finds itself in is misguided and I do not consider it a classic or even an enjoyable read. I almost find it offensive this book is held in the same regard as works of Hemingway and Chaucer. If you must read something I’d reach for the instructions on your toaster oven before cracking the cover on this drivel.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book here.

3rd Party, Please Don’t Fuck This Up

3rd

Holy shit, another option. Holy shit, the Libertarians are actually being mentioned outside of chat rooms and their own circles. Holy shit Gary Johnson and Bob Weld are polling at eleven percent in national polls. Holy shit, the citizens are looking for choices outside of the GOP and DNC. Holy shit, I hope these two make a good showing and open up an express lane for others to campaign and be taken seriously.

I am actively advocating something to disrupt the establishment and push for liberty. We need a mindset change in this country. We have been mired in the left or right paradigm for far too long. The current mainstream candidates appeal to the lowest common denominator and only offer the illusion of choice. Whether the Democrats or Republicans win this election, we will end up in another war, we will have more laws passed that limit freedoms and the national debt will only rise. This things will negatively impact all of us. The people not politicians will be forced to reap the consequences.

Americans need this shift in the political spectrum. They need to see an alternative to the status quo to care again. I just want to liberty to prevail and people to actually be able to chose what works for them. I desperately want the third party to make a good showing this election, so people will stop choosing lesser evils and start moving towards good. Something to uproot career politicians whose only real goal is to stay in power and continue to exist comfortably. So many people are so vocal about how broken the system is, yet they refuse to hear any voice outside of what is easiest.

I plead with you, third party do not fuck this up. The Perot campaign in 1992 is the last time anyone took something different, seriously. We need this to work, we need this to do well and most of all, we need you to not abandon your principles for the sake of fitting in. Candor and truth stand tallest in the forest of mistruths and lies, so please just tread lightly and act with some civility so you don’t ruin fringe candidacy for the next guy.

 

 

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book here.

 

 

 

 

The Call of Cthulhu Review

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I don’t think I possess the ability to discuss literature without invoking the name of H.P. Lovecraft. I’m sure the term ‘classic’ isn’t always one attributed to pulp horror writers, but I’m pulling rank here.  Settle back as I present you, The Call of Cthulhu.

For the uninitiated, The Call of Cthulhu is a short story about a man named the inheritor of his uncle’s estate. While performing these duties he discovers his late uncle’s obsession with an ancient cult. This is easily Lovecraft’s most well known and highly regarded work, though his short stories have been adapted to multiple forms of media.

Before I get too deep into my passions for this book, I know from the get go you’ll either love or hate Lovecraft’s style of writing. It’s dark and complicated, a kind of sludgy gothic concentrate not for the faint of heart. He will build the atmosphere off the page and pile it up around you. It’s a bit inaccessible for some new Lovecraft readers.

Flaws noted, this is such a fantastic book. Call of Cthulhu is the story that began my love affair with Lovecraft’s work. I’ve read it multiple times and always gotten enjoyment from it. In my opinion, it is some of his finest writing. This book is worth the hype. It has inspired multiple adaptations and expansions to the myths, from tabletop RPG games to novellas to animated series. There is so much to enjoy in this story, it appeals to lovers of horror and mystery in all the best ways. I don’t really know of anything that compares to this tale, so for lovers of foreboding suspense  or for those who want a tale about ancient occults worshiping long forgotten gods, this is one for you.

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here  or download his e-book here.

 

Is Effort Overrated?

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Cream always rises to the top. Sure it’s an easy colloquialism that is meant to inspire everyone to try hard. It is the style of saying usually reserved for guidance counselors and posters with cute animals on them. So what happens when the cream just gives up because the dairy fights them every step of the way.

Cryptic, I know. Ready yourself, I’m going to elaborate. We’ve all been told to work hard, apply ourselves and give a little extra. This is the secret to success and what we should aspire to be. Just do more because it’s the right thing to do. Great ideas that aren’t given the proper method to thrive.

Face it, some people are never going to apply themselves. Some people are going to skid by doing the bare minimum and that is fine. The application of self isn’t really the issue here. The issue is when those who don’t really exhibit any effort fuck it up for the rest of the people in the room. When they become the majority and lower the standards.

This is where those who legitimately try truly suffer. When the standard are so low, those willing to better themselves and give their all are ostracized. The system of do as little as needed is upset by their presence and they are either forced out of it or are absorbed into it. You either conform or are exiled.

With less being demanded of the individual why bother to compete? We are punishing the truest assets and not rewarding them. We are discouraging motivation and creativity by snuffing out everything it should be. Surely those with any desire will find a way to succeed, but it’ll be on their own merits and in spite of their environments. Good luck my dear overachievers, good luck.

 

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work in the article section. Also enjoy his poetry blog here.

 

 

 

Group Think

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It seems to me the modern day lynch mobs are growing at an alarming rate. Without even trying to be involved in any of the issues, they are forced upon me. Small minded arguments calling for vindication of some sort of wrong. I’m done with it and as far as I see it, you’re all wrong.

The social justice warriors have sharpened their spears and marched upon the natives, causing the natives to meet them with resentment and violence. Neither group has behaved particularly well, they are both making demands and terrorizing one another.

Every issue from trans-gender bathroom use to the profiling of the practitioners of Islam to those trying to ban or increase gun rights are beating on my brain and I’m tired of it.
What I think is being neglected by all sides of these issues is that we are all losing. What is lost in all of the heated discussions and short sided quarrels is we are playing the hand dealt to us exactly as we should. Instead of coming to some voluntary, civil agreement we call out to our officials to fix the problem. Just as children on a schoolyard call to the teacher, so we call in the litigators and officials.

This has a negative reaction for everyone, some type of law, rule, guideline or mantra will get passed, and that will limit or outlaw someone’s liberty. Whether that freedom was one to support or deny that particular issue. So no one really wins, we all lose. Losing the ability to live a life as we choose because we cannot come to some sort of an arrangement. It seems so simple, when it comes to differing ideas, just rationally discuss it. Act like an adult, conduct yourself with decorum and represent your side intelligently. If we figured out our own solutions that mutually benefited both parties, I doubt all the quarreling would raise everyone’s ire to the point of a riotous frenzy.

If we just show the slightest bit of respect to those in situations different than our own, we might actually fucking learn something as opposed to making judgments on other’s dispositions. Look I never claimed perfection and am filled with my own prejudices, but I am pledging from henceforth to improve my empathy skills. Perhaps, you’ll join me?
Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here.

 

Jekyll & Hyde Review

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We’ve all been told forever how classic the classics are. As a way to better myself I have decided to read some of these classics. Are they historically significant? You bet. Are they entertaining? We shall see. I understand that literature is subjective and somethings just really strike a chord with some people. That being said some things are just overrated. One of those things is Robert Louis Stevenson’s “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.”

We all know this story. Well, we all know the pop culture synopsis of this story. The short version is a mild mannered professor has a mysterious connection to a dangerous man. That connection isn’t made clear until the reader discovers Jekyll and Hyde are the same person.

I wanted to like this book, I really did. I wanted this book to captivate and intrigue me. This book did neither. It was a ponderous and boring read that only was mildly interesting. I assumed that both the duality of man and goo versus evil would be discussed at length. I expected to dive deep into the conflicted mind of a mad genius. I was wrong. More time was spent discussing what makes a gentleman, a gentleman and the importance of someone’s reputation in Victorian era England. It lacked suspense and any elements of horror. Outside of an interesting core concept, this book offers very little to keep the reader engaged. If you need some Robert Louis Stevenson in your life, go with Treasure Island and pass on this.

I feel this book is a victim of it’s own reputation. It was difficult for me to stay on task during this brief story and it felt like a conscious effort to keep reading. Any time a book feels like work, that is never a good sign. Overall, a pretty uninspired experience.

Cody Jemes is the co-host of the Bored Shenanigans pod cast. See more of his work here. Also enjoy his poetry blog here.

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Stalling For Time 05


Why hello there. This episode is here to fulfill all your sensual desires. It will gently caress your supple body and fill you with orgasmic desire. You are in for the most erotic podcast of your life, prepare yourself for ecstasy you have never experienced. Welcome to Stall For Time 5, Live Nudes or Something.

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While You Wait for Some Bored Shenanigans…

Stall For Time Episode 005: Live Nudes or Something

CAST:
Rev. Ryan S. Brewer— Emmanuel Westinghouse
Cody Jemes————- Emmanuel Westinghouse

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 88

Hey there pretty baby. You look lovely and smell decadent. I appreciate you taking the time to read this well crafted episode desription because I am here to entice and seduce you into downloading me. Hear our rugged and voluptuous hosts tell you about their irrational fears. Maybe they’ll look to snuggle up you? Also Cody has a new place to play soft music and candlelight whilst Brewer finds a dreamy, cushiony place to take that special someone. Mmmm sounds divine.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.

Welcome to Episode 88: ChairLand

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 74

The two least qualified humans on the planet attempt to make some sense out of the abortion topic. With the help of many fine, fine listeners we bring their opinions and our own straight to you.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans

Welcome to Episode 74: Abort!

 

 

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 61

Find out why things have been so hectic last week. Yesterday was Carl Sagan Day and we talk about all the things we did for it. The voting is done see how your favorite team did. Snakes are going missing and only we have the skills to make puns about it. Brewers writing a self help book on podcasting and Cody does not know when to stop talking sexy.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.    

Welcome to Episode 61: … or hardly working

5 Songs That Matter Most

Music matters to everyone. We all have those songs that take us back to our youth or to a specific place in our lives. A majestic art that can make us feel everything so deeply and on an almost subatomic level. That being said, I bring to you not only my five favorite pieces of music, but those that mean the most to me. So ready yourselves to disagree as Rank This! Presents Cody’s 5 Songs that Matter most.

5-Fuck Authority– Pennywise
This is a nostalgia choice for me. This is off of their Land of the Free? album and was my first exposure to anything called punk rock. This was my gateway drug into the world of three cords and do it yourself ethos that inhabit a large majority of my musical choice. Before this track, it never occurred to me that you could say this kind of stuff in a song. It opened my eyes to what self expression means and that the rules are merely what you make of them. I love this song as much now as the first time I heard it. A rebellious song that puts it all on front street and challenges the listener to make a change for the better. All in all a fantastic track.

4-God’s Love-Bad Religion 
The most recent choice on the list, this is a song I found a few years ago. This is a song that struck me at a time when I was exploring my own spirituality. God’s Love does a fantastic job of satirically yet insightfully examining one’s faith, especially in the realm of Christianity. I know this will never make a top ten list for Bad Religion songs, but being a big fan of theirs, this song just does it for me.

3-Where Eagles Dare– The Misfits
Let me be clear so there is no confusion, The Misfits are the greatest band of all time. They are far and away my favorite musical choice and cannot stop listening to them and enjoying their work. That being out of the way, Where Eagles Dare is my chosen song of their catalog. This was certainly the hardest pick for me, as I deeply enjoy so much of their music. The chorus of this song makes it, balancing the right amount of fuck you attitude with power to back it up. This song is a perfect manifestation of the horror imagery The Misfits built their legacy upon. A superior song from a phenomenal band.

2-All Apologies-Nirvana
This song is so good it almost physically hurts. Nirvana was such a deeply talented band with some real gems in their albums ,but this is the one I have to choose. Another song I found as a confused loner kid it has managed to grow with me through the years. Covering a large gamete of emotion in a single track, you follow the journey and feel it with every note. This is a necessary song for all humanity, without it who knows where we would be?

1-Paint it Black-Rolling Stones
As far as I am concerned, this is the perfect song. I really have little affinity for the Rolling Stones, but there is some kind of sorcery in this piece. A masterwork of musical arts, this one just never gets old to me. Haunting and beautiful you find yourself at one with the universe when this song plays. It reverberates the frustration and fear of the universe in a few brief moments. A classic in every sense of the word, this my friends is music.

 

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 44

As the title of the episode says we help crack the code of the evil that is Miracle Whip. Also, we wonder about our last episode; is it us that’s weird for Not getting offended easily? And we give you the straight dope on some movie we saw (Looper, The Dirties) and some podcast we now follow (Welcome to Night Vale, The Steve Austin Show)

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.

Welcome to Episode 44: Satan’s Miracle Whip

Also stay tuned after the credits for a little bit of trivia from Cody about Napoleon.

Burnout Happens

There is defiantly such a thing as too much of a good thing. This usually is a phrase that is tethered around liquor or lavish money spending but it applies in many fields. Sometimes, responsibilities take your carefully drawn up schedule of time management and throws it squarely in the refuse bin. Try as one might to return back to square one, they are running without any hope of catching it. My meager little bit of advice is simple, enjoy the avalanche. You cannot stop the storm nor will you be able to reconstruct from the point before it. Take a step back, watch the pretty flames dance. Enjoy your time and don’t stress about what could have been. When the fire burns itself out, go in and reassess the situation. Maybe now is time to make a new schedule and begin the process of getting back into a routine. When you are speeding through a flurry of must dos just hang on,it always will slow down. Also remember no fret over lost production,lost time, loss of revenue or for simply not being able to go to that party. It will all come around and settle at the bottom. Hell, in the long run probably for the better.

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Three RTS Games to Play Before You Die

Here at the BS production house, we like us some war games. Really like us some war games. Many a precious hour have been wasted fighting one another on the digital battlefield. While we do enjoy several fine first person shooters, our heart will forever belong to those mystical real time strategy games.  So after much debate and without any remorse, we present to our readers…

 

3 RTS Games to Play Before You Die

3) Starcraft

starcraft

The original did it best, plain and simple. There is a reason this is still played in tournaments around the world. To the uninitiated, Starcraft’s campaign throws them into a story involving three warring factions. All three campaign’s allow the player to try each faction and find the one that appeals to them, whether it be the Imperialistic Terran,  the Noble Protoss or the Evil Zerg regime. Each has its own weakness’ and strengths and offers a well balanced system. This is a interstellar delight that should appeal to solo players for it’s story and multiplayers for it’s competitive play. A fantastic game and a great example of real time strategy done right.

2) Command and Conquer: Generals-Zero Hour

zerohour

The expansion to C&C: Generals, this game shined in the shadow of it’s predecessor. Keeping with RTS tradition, the player can chose between the technologically superior USA, the mighty multitudes of China or the ruthless and terroristic GLA. Each campaign does a good job of making you sympathize with a faction and see each one’s strength. The general’s challenge is a personal favorite, forcing you to take on a nine specialists of each faction.  This is easily the game we have logged the most hours on. The ability to have 8 players at once, makes this a LAN party favorite.

1) Conquest: Frontier Wars

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Here she is, the creme de le creme of real time strategy games. This game has the most insane AI, the hardest difficulty and the most variety amongst it’s factions. Again with the 3 factions, other than what it said in game via the Terran campaign, little is really fleshed out. The Mantis are a insectoid race devouring worlds in their hive like structure and the Celareons are beings of pure energy, with far superior technology and defensive structures. Learning each style of play through the multiplayer option against computer controlled enemies forces you to learn quickly. A steep difficulty level makes this one of the most fun examples of co-op play available and with just the right amount of lore, allows the players to use their imagination. Never a commercial success, this game’s sequel was cancelled, but was supposed to introduce a fourth race, the lizard like Vyrium who would function much differently than the other three. This game is beyond well done and any fan of strategy games should certainly enjoy time spent with it.

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 29

There is nothing wrong with your computer. Do not attempt to adjust the speakers. We are controlling transmission. If we wish to make it louder, we will bring up the volume. If we wish to make it softer, we will tune it to a whisper. We will control your download. We will control your upload. We can Rick roll the image, make you shutter. We can change our focus to a soft blur or sharpen it to crystal clarity. For the next hour, sit quietly and we will control all that you hear. We repeat: there is nothing wrong with your computer. You are about to participate in a great adventure. You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to The Bored Shenanigans.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.     

Welcome to Episode 29: ConspiracyCast: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the BS

It is the stated position of the U.S. Air Force that their safeguards would prevent the occurrence of such events as are depicted in this podcast. Furthermore, it should be noted that none of the characters portrayed in this film are meant to represent any real persons living or dead.

Failed Potential Movie Sequels Part 2

Failed Potential Movie Sequels Returns

We return with a vengeance to bring you the beginning of the list. Without further hullabaloo, here is number 15 to number 1 of our Rank This! movie sequel list.

15-Addams Family Values

This sequel fell so flat. Pancake level flat. Anjelica Houston and Raul Julia reprise their roles as Morticia and Gomez, but this film’s unrelenting desire to make Uncle Fester a comedy relief character runs this film aground.

 14-Fantastic Four: Rise of The Silver Surfer

Well this was the chance for redemption after that abortion of a first film. Sweet hell, this was not it. Blundering their way through the introduction of Silver Surfer and making Galactus a big, glowy cloud really made me regret seeing this movie. 

13-Tremors Sequels(All of them)

Sweet fuck, just stop. The first film was more fun than any movie about giant worms has any right to be. It was sort of call back to the creature feature genre and had a cast of characters you rooted for. Then they just kept making terrible, ponderous films about tunneling worms of death.

12-Mission Impossible 2

The first Mission Impossible was a complex spy film that made the audience think and wonder what Ethan Hunt’s next move would be. The sequel was directed by John Woo and has explosions, motorcycle races, giant explosions, and doves gracefully flying amid gun battles. Not what I had hoped for by any stretch of the imagination. A dumb action film that should have been a tight spy thriller. 

11-2010: The Year We Made Contact

Stanley Kubrick set the bar pretty high. I don’t know that this film ever had a real chance of touching that one. But the director tries so hard to do Kubrickian things and it doesn’t resonate. This is apparent in the ending most of all, which ends simply and leaves the audience craving more, especially after how the first film looked into the mystery of space. 

10-Shrek 2

Shrek turns into a human and donkey turns into a horse. He wants to win back Fiona and wacky antics ensue…..Next!

9-Aladdin 2: Return of Jafar

220px-Returnofjafar

Maybe this is nostalgia leaking in here. I used to really like Aladdin. It was one of my favorite Disney pictures, having more adventure than most of its peers. The sequel was bad. Really bad, rehashing  a lackluster villain in a lackluster revenge plot. Oh and Robin Williams doesn’t play the Genie and it is  painfully obvious. 

8-Pirates of Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest

The first film was so perfect. It set us all up for a franchise of  staggering escapades and did so much to make us like Jack Sparrow. Then this happened and it snowballed into a half-ass’d snooze fest that seemed unable to grasp any of the mystique of the predecessor. 

7-Batman Returns

Why do people like this movie? Other than a top-notch Catwoman, what is good here? I understand the impact and revolution in the first flick, but this was horrendous. Tim Burton created so much atmosphere and scenery, the cast couldn’t help but chew it. Without Christopher Nolan’s trilogy, people would assume that this tripe is Batman.

6-Caddyshack 2

195px-Caddyshack_ii

What is there to say? You take a legendary comedy film’s sequel and insult the audience with it. This film could easily be under a dictionary heading under terrorism.

5-Butterfly Effect 2

190px-Butterflyeffect2dvd

I don’t think the writer of this had ever seen the original. It is Butterfly Effect in name only. The first one was so good, this one was poorly made, poorly acted, and I was dumb enough to take the bait and watch it. I want my time back.

4-Matrix Revolutions

Okay, Reloaded had problems. It did, but this is where the string was pulled and the series unraveled completely apart. Constantly trying to mind fuck us for no real reason, this film plodded along and ended with a standard fare Zion standoff and an unearned ‘what if ‘ending. I wish I had taken the blue pill instead.

3-The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

220px-The_Mummy_-_Tomb_of_the_Dragon_Emperor (1)

Here it is, this is why I did this list. The first Mummy wasn’t Citizen Kane or anything. It had its problems, but it was fun. It was a loving tribute to The Mummy’s Tomb and Curse of the Mummy’s Hand. It was a great return to a much forgotten monster. I really enjoyed it and do so more upon repeated viewings. The Mummy Returns was not good and neither was the Scorpion King. This should have been awesome, taking the series to a new land and culture with the Terracotta Army and Chinese Emperor’s undead. This could have at least been a diet version of Indiana Jones. They screwed this up so bad and made it just another forgettable action flick and wasting so much potential.

2-Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

Star_Wars_-_Episode_II_Attack_of_the_Clones_(movie_poster)

This is the worst of the prequels and I will not be swayed otherwise. Even with boring podraces and Jar Jar, Phantom Menace was still watchable. Darth Maul was cool, the space battles were fun and the plot tried for something. In this film, Christopher Lee is wasted as a mediocre villain and we watch poorly written romantic dialogue. Apparently Boba Fett is a clone and so are all storm troopers. This cannot be the Clone Wars that Ben Kenobi talked about all those years ago on Tattoine. 

1-Boondock Saints 2: All Saints Day

220px-Boondock_2_poster

I wanted to love this movie and quote it as much as I do the first film. In the BS production house and amongst our friends this is one of our films. We were so ready for this movie to come out. It isn’t bad. It just isn’t the first film. It tries so hard to recapture that lightning, but never seems to. Rocco’s cameo was a nice touch and having Willam Defoe return as Lt. Smeker was great, but I still feel a bit empty. I loved the Focus on Il Duce, but something wasn’t quite there. This series still gets an annual play through on St. Patty’s Day, but All Saints Day just isn’t the saint the first one was.

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Failed Potential Movie Sequels Part 1

Welcome ladies and gentlemen to Bored Shenanigans’ Rank This! This time we list out those movies that were really disappointing even though they were filled with so much potential. These films still hurt us a little on the inside years later. Enjoy part one, and stay tuned for part two next week.

30-Indiana Jones Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

indy2

It has been well documented on what a boner killer this film is. It rendered all fans of Indy’s return quite flaccid. Some head scratching scenes involving gophers, monkeys, refrigerators and poorly conceived Soviets and aliens all stacked up for a forgettable finish to a proud franchise.

29-Blair Witch 2: Book of Shadows

blairwitch2

Remember all those shaky camera shots and intense point of view moments from the first film? Remember how it felt so personal and realistic in comparison to everything else that was out at the time? So in the sequel what if the went as far away from that low-budget edgy style and made it into a generic horror film? You have number 29 on our list.

28-Jurassic Park 3

jurassic3

Fail. How do you fuck up a dinosaur movie? Just put them somewhere and focus on the interesting dinosaurs not the lame ass human drama. This was their chance to redeem themselves after that abysmal Lost World flick. Fail.

27-Lost Boys: The Tribe

This movie sure missed the mark. Everyone likes The Lost Boys and no one liked its sequel. It lacked the fun or adventure of its predecessor and left us feeling empty will with two dried up Coreys.

26-Ghost Busters 2

Okay, Viggo was a pretty kick ass part of this movie. He was a much more interesting villain than Gozer. Then you factor in little Oscar, mood slime, and just a ho hum experience. They had so much to work with and all we got was, meh.

25-Grease 2

Let’s flip the male and female characters changing themselves and swap cars for motorcycles. Other than a funny song about reproduction, this film wasted what could have been another iconic movie.

24-Resident Evil sequels/Silent Hill sequels

I am cheating here a little bit, but this is my list. The original film of these perspective franchises were pretty awesome. Both took their particular worlds and made them frightening. Then the sequels started. They both have steadily declined to the point of almost unbearable.

23-X Men 3: The Last Stand

Enough with the goddamn Wolverine. We get it, he is a bad-ass with claws. This should have been the movie that made the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants shine and allowed the audience to sympathize with their plight. Instead we get to plod through a poorly drawn out Phoenix story.

22-Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

terminator 3

This could have been such a insanely perfect string of sequels. The first one was incredible, the second one surpassed it, and the third tried its damnedest to recreate the T-1000 and give him tits. John Conner sucks in this movie. At least Salvation wasn’t too bad.

21-Halloween 2 (Rob Zombie)

Rob Zombie has proven to be one of the more interesting horror directors. His revision of the first Halloween movie was really enjoyable and demonstrated the range of his cast. It’s sequel fell flat in comparison. It was most certainly a disappointment.

20-The Never Ending Story Part 2

This story should have ended. What the hell was going on in this movie? This had such a convoluted plot with even more characters to develop. I am too confused by this movie to elaborate on it any more.

19- D2: Mighty Ducks

d2

So after a group of rambunctious and rowdy kids learn about teamwork and their coach learns about personal responsibility, in the off season they forget to practice. So what do we do? Learn it all again. Rehashed and lame ass hell, this sequel relied on the tried and true team USA patriotism shtick to manipulate the audience into feeling warm and fuzzy.

18-Back to the Future 2 & 3

Get your hate mail ready folks. I think this film fell pretty far from its predecessor. Two wasn’t terrible and three was almost unwatchable, but with a premise like time travel, I couldn’t develop a taste for the film’s tone. Going for a more campy than thoughtful method, these two seemed to waste Christopher Lloyd as a fantastic mad scientist.

17-Return to House of Haunted Hill

The bar wasn’t set particularly high by the remake of the original, but they certainly had their heart in the right place. Using the name ‘Price’ to honor Vincent Price is a nice touch, but the strange choice to use an idol as the motivation for the things that happened, focusing on gangsters and side characters made the audience scratch their head.

16-S. Darko: A Donnie Darko Tale

darko

In a way, this movie never needed a sequel. In another way, there was so much lore to the world, it almost begged for one.  This film added absolutely nothing and wasted everyone’s time. With such an over abundance of material to work with and such an intensely loyal fan base, how could you so frivolously fuck this up? Pure and utter wastrel.

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Seven Quotes to Live By

This world has been filled beyond the brim with more intelligent people than myself. If it magically became necessary to use other’s words to construct a primer to live by, these are the ones that I would chose. The following quotes are meant to distill things down to the core fundamentals necessary to thrive. So, Rank This Proudly Presents

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Quotes to Live By

7) “The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted.” -James Madison

This is imperative. One must think for themselves and do whatever they can to educate themselves and see past what construct of governing sovereignty is presented.  Following without question is dangerous, so always ask some questions.

6) “Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.” – Jack Kerouac

Life is filled with too much wonder and mystery to not experience it. Grasping life and experiencing them is why we are all here. Seeing new places, tasting new foods, meeting new people and emerging yourself into other cultures can offer a revived perspective, but can also foster a lifelong memory. It it too short to not seize the moments.

5) “A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.” –Jim Morrison

Friendship is a wonderful occurrence. Being able to drop your guard in front of another person and just enjoy each other’s company is a rarity. When you can connect with someone on a level of enjoying a common interest or doing absolutely nothing, don’t let that slip away.

4) “I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.” – Ernest Hemingway

Shut the fuck up and listen to what others are saying. Other’s opinions, thoughts, beliefs, or fears can be a phenomenal learning experience. Just don’t talk to hear your own voice, listen to what else is around you and pay attention. It is often worth it.

3) “Hope Is The Last Thing To Die” -Japanese proverb

Hope only gives up when you do. As long as you hold out that things will be okay after something difficult arises, they will. Giving up on hope is your choice, when hope is let go things truly are lost. Don’t lose heart. Hang on, it will all work out in the finish.

2) “Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city.” -George Burns

Family is the tie that binds us. Whether it be your spouse, your child or your mother, that thread is almost indefinably important. That bond that draws family together instantly in the face of crisis, that bond that is shared among siblings, those memorable vacations and those famous recipes.  This is the core nucleus of who we are that defines us as a person. No other group can drive us as crazy or make us feel as important.

1) “Life grants nothing to us mortals without hard work.”            –Horace

This is the one, this is what it all comes down to. Work hard and you will get somewhere. Work hard and you will achieve whatever your goal is. Work can go along way that talent does not. Step up, stand up, fight and take that dream by the horns. Lackadaisical attitudes do not garner success, diligent work is the key to success. 

 

 

 

 Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Overrated Fictional Characters

We have all been there, sitting around listening to someone prattle on and on about what a great character someone was. Barraged by the popular conception and fandom, we find ourselves hearing just a bit too much about the following characters. Without further ado, Bored Shenanigans’ Rank This! presents

The Top 11 Most Overrated Fictional Characters

11- Cinderella.

cinderlla

 YAWN. What a boring character with an over referenced story. The story is supposed to give us all a warm fuzzy and believe that one day wonder and beauty will rain upon us and free us from all our hardships. The original story had some dark elements and is more enjoyable, yet it has been so convoluted and watered down by Disney, it is almost unrecognizable. I never saw what the big deal was here. 

10- Legolas.

legolas

I feel clarification is needed here. In Tolkien’s books, Legolas is a member of the original nine who were to protect the ring. He was an introduction to the world of elves and had a few cool action scenes. He was just a fun background character who served his purpose well. Enter Peter Jackson. I guess, a defined cool character was needed. Someone to make the tween boys yell and the tween girls swoon. Dispensing arrows at a feverish pace, Legolas surfs down stairs on shields, kills large amounts of Orcs and tempts death many, many times. Expanded unnecessarily for the film, at least he gives cosplayers another choice in costuming.

9- Wolf Man. 

wolfman

Though he is considered a cornerstone of the vintage horror genre, he is the weakest.  All props go to Lon Chaney Jr. for an admirable performance, but he holds little sway. He doesn’t have the vexing nature of Dracula, the sympathy of Frankenstein’s monster, the tragedy of The Phantom of the Opera, or even the mystery of the Gill-man. I respect the ingenuity of the make up and effects, but this film is a bit ponderous and the writing of the character never draws us in. Not too bad, just out gunned by others in the category. The most disappointing thing is they had a second chance with the 2010 film, but it did little to add to the universe.

8- Ryu & Ken. 

ken ryu

This is a tie for two characters who are essentially the same. Pallet swapped from the beginning these two have become the face of the Street Fighter franchise. With a field of such diverse and fascinating characters, these were the two that were picked? Give me Vega, Chun Li, Bison, Axel or Akuma any day.

7-Harry Potter.

harry potter

Too bad there isn’t a magic spell to make you be less of a whiny little bitch. Harry Potter constantly takes on tasks bigger than he can handle and then puts himself or others in peril. A dramatic pre-madonna he takes the role of lone savior much too far and must be bailed out by his much more interesting and well drawn out supporting characters. Gifted with a well written universe and a well thought out set of villains, Mr. Potter falls flat in books and films that bear his namesake.

6- Hamlet.

hamlet

To list or not to list. To deny popular conception of what is iconic stories and throw them by the way side. To withstand the flaming arrows or to take up arms against the status quo of popular opinion…. With all the iconic and well done characters created by William Shakespeare, how has Hamlet become the icon? A man of inaction and debate he ponders and over thinks his next move. I feel Oedipus did it better and was far more intriguing with far more baggage. I understand that history is on Hamlet’s side, but it is no Twelfth Night or The Tempest. 

5- Luke Skywalker.

skywalker

I understand why Luke Skywalker exists. He is the innocent soul that can be related to by the audience. He introduces us to the fantastical world around him, I understand his point. But he is such a lost little sheep through the first two films. Sure he has moments of excellence, like destroying the Death Star and knocking down Imperial AT-ATs, but until his transformation in Return of the Jedi, this character is an uninteresting one. Out classed by far more interesting characters like Han Solo, Princess Leia, Obi-Wan, Chewy, the droids and Lando. Truly a so-so character amid a cavalcade of new and exciting relationships.

 

4-Data.

data

Spock as a robot. That is all Data is. Sure he was learning about how to be more human, but sweet Omicron Theta! does this character get on my nerves some times. From stupid laughter to singing folk songs, he can really wear on the viewer. As the series progressed, he became more enlightening and showed the audience what it took to be human. I just never understood his appeal to the Trek Nation. 

3- Wolverine.

wolverine

This was a character that never grew with the fans. Okay, he is an invincible bad ass with a foul temper and some sweet claws. Who was experimented on by the government. But was originally from Japan. And may have fought in the Civil War. Logan has been the focus of so many comics and films, we lose track. He was a cool character when we were 12, but now he is yawn worthy with his same antics. He is so deeply associated with the X-Men and the Marvel universe, he has almost become their unofficial mascot. Over exposure that overshadows other notable characters earns Weapon X his place on this list.

2- Jay Gatsby.

Gatsby_1925_jacket

The Book is not about Gatsby. Just because his name is in the title, doesn’t mean that is the subject. Jay Gatsby is a self-righteous twat used by the real main character, Nick to show the glitz over substance society of 1920s America. Wrongly identified as the protagonist and somehow praised as a good character, he receives much undeserved acclaim. 

1- Tidus.

tidus

Auron was wrong. This was not Tidus’ story, it was Yuna’s. This fact would not be so important if Tidus didn’t exclaim that it is his story every five fucking minutes. Barely beating Wakka out as far as stupid Final Fantasy X characters go. This guy has some huge fan following and he is by folds the most annoying person in your party. Why would you want him back in the sequel? Tidus can suck my Blitzball.

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

Go Enjoy the Existence

One must live for today. One must stand with open arms to the world around them, embracing it for what is not what could have been. The problems arise when you find yourself contemplatively losing yourself in a moment. By reflecting upon how something could be relived and acted upon differently you often find yourself wandering through your mind and trying to recalculate the past. Over thought of what could have been and not what is can often be a tedious and deadly mistress. Sure, one should actively review actions and learn from the missteps made in those actions, but to live in the now is a real error. You must co-habitat with the present and live in the instant. Embrace the immediate moment. Talk to that pretty girl, stay out a little late, have a meaningless conversation, watch that stupid movie. Live. One must occasionally walk barefoot in the snow or get shit face drunk on their birthday. Life is too short and we are too small and menial amongst a vast universe to not enjoy that chocolate bar or the fog that hides the moon. In a violent and hectic existence, one must take heed and enjoy all the wonder. Breath deep friends, all the problems, stresses and strains will be there tomorrow.  Go enjoy the existence.

 

 

Cody Jemes is the Literary Engineer behind both the Rank This and the Articulations sections @Bored Shenanigans. Stay tuned weekly for new articles, new pod-casts and all kinds of free funny. Fill your need for sports at Texas Fandom or fill that poetry void at Abuse Through Poetry.

BS To Go 003: Going For Broke

The wait is over America, Brent returns with Cody as they philosophize over porn, pro athletes pay checks, and a the state of our demographic. So roll up your sleeves and enjoy a hearty helping of BS to go!

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Outside Looking In

Sometimes it takes a friend. Sometimes it takes a friend for you to recognize your own flaws. Those hard standing habits that have become so structurally significant to you. Those stubborn things you allow to persist without even noticing them. Sometimes, it just takes a friend to shine the candle in just the right way for you to see your own shadow. That demented reflection of yourself that cannot encapsulate your better qualities. Darkly it has crept within you, bestowing upon you traits you never wanted. Embedded within you so deeply, it takes a second set of eyes to find them. It is a shattering and unnerving feeling to see your flaws laid out before you. That moment when you have all the evidence before you, yet you still want to claim innocence. All you can do is absorb it. Take in the criticisms and grow from them. Even in small areas allow them to make you a better person. Remember that recognition is the first step to transformation.  So swallow your pride and proceed better. Go out and improve yourself. Take a trusted suggestion or two to heart. Do not allow yourself to be placid and stagnant in your own self betterment. We were never meant to sit still. We were meant to fail miserably and succeed gloriously. We were meant to observe and report. We were meant to improve ourselves and the others around us. Just take the criticisms, accept your blemishes and do whatever is in your power to polish them up a little. Beyond the goals of rising above, past the notions of furtherance of self, it is imperative that you thank that friend for their observations.

 

 Cody Jemes  is the mastermind and head complainer behind the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Has his writing style got you all hot and bothered and you crave more? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, watch him abuse poetry on his blog or if  you are tired of reading? Listen to the podcast he co-hosts.  

Top 9 Favorite Swearwords

Cody’s Top 9 Favorite Swearwords

9)Piss. Does this really count? Isn’t this just a rude word? Like saying I voted for straight Republican ticket or I like Creed? This one barely makes the list.

8)Tits. Really? How is this a bad word? I guess because it isn’t the more technical teets, it is sinful. At least it brings to mind something wonderful, hence it’s position.

7) Damn. This is a pretty weak swear word, even when added as a description word. Even at it’s highest level of ‘I damn you to hell!’ it really requires a stronger word to make it strong enough.

6) Hell. This beats out damn simply on imagery. Devils, demons, hell fire and brimstone are all solicited. No one wants to go to hell, not even Hell, Michigan. A good word, but trumped by others on the list.

5)Shit. The versatility gives this one a guaranteed spot. Oh shit, holy shit, stepped in shit, dropped my shit, a shitty list. What a great word with good strong symbolism.

4)Ass. Another good one, it can be a great thing or a description of a horrible person. A giant ass can mean something glorious, something moronic or something vomit educing. Asses would be nothing without assholes, but the sphincter owes this one a debt of gratitude.

3) Dick. Insert Freudian phallic symbolism joke here. Look you can add ‘dick’ to anything, dick-day, dick-grass, Jupiter-dick. I don’t know what they mean either, but they sound dirty and it is all thanks to dick.

2) Cunt. I seriously had to debate my one and two for quite some time. This lost, but it did receive much consideration. This word immediately receives a shudder of disapproval from the fairer sex. Isn’t that one of the best parts about enjoying foul language? To irk the women?

1) Fuck. Come on, what else could top this list? This is the big enchilada of swear words and honestly, one of the most necessary words in the English language. It has the most ability to express every emotion conceived by mankind. This is an amazing word and most worthy of a number one spot.

***)Honorable mentions, motherfucker, cocksucker and goddamn are phenomenal swear words. Flowering your speech with them can add such atmosphere, but they generally require another word for them to work properly. So if you want an all powerful swear, we here at Bored Shenanigans, advocate the use of all of these.

 Cody Jemes  is the mastermind and head complainer behind the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Has his writing style got you all hot and bothered and you crave more? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, watch him abuse poetry on his blog or if  you are tired of reading? Listen to the podcast he cohosts.  

BS-to-GO 002

This meeting has come to order.

I will get to the point; I did not have sexual relations…. I mean; here at BS Productions we have Big Plans for the Future in this Press Release we address these so, listen closely to see how we are moving forward to the next phase hitting the ground running and climbing the ladder of success straight through the glass ceiling up to the stars to boldly go shooting for the moon but we wont fly to close to the sun because we are right on target for a steady course of smooth sailing.

That is all.

May I Take Your Order?     

Would you like the Hot Apple Pie with that?

So that’s one To-Go Episode 02: State of the Shenanigans Address

one more thing…

NEW WEB ADDRESS COMING SOON!!!!!!!!! 

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 22

We are opening Vault Shenanigans for another episode that never made it out when we intended it to. If you listen you will here us say why but it short we lost the first few bits of audio so we do a dramatic reenactment of what actually happen, for real, no joke, this is fact and true with truth. CiCi and Madison are here in the studio and boy howdy is it grand.

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.     

Welcome to Episode 22: The Good, the Bad, and the Rest

Begrudgingly

Just fucking squash your petty feuds. Don’t sit and stammer at the screen making up bullshit excuses aimed at nothing beyond self-gratification, fucking eliminate your feuds. Look, it is understood that some wrongs cannot be righted. Some grievous and dire violations of self and family cannot be corrected by a mere ‘I’m sorry’.  Outside of select few instances, do that many of us have things requiring Punisher-esque  style of revenge? Look we all disagree, we all are assholes or victims of assholes at times, nevertheless if we want to have any type of chance at moving forward, one must eliminate the issues. If you really don’t give a fuck about the person you are disagreeing with, them ignore them. However, when it comes down to family, friends, co-workers, or hell even frequently used hookers, just fix the issue. No one wants to walk waist deep in the excrement of your stupid high school drama. Nobody wants to feel that uneasy and unsettling tension that hangs so heavy when aforementioned squabblers are in the room. If not for your sake do it for the sake of everyone else.

Beyond all that, if the issues marred whatever relationship was there, at least try to be civil. Just feign a bit of courtesy and think to yourself what a goddamned cocksucker that person is. So here at Bored Shenanigans we advocate treaties amongst warring parties and nations. No more should one feel the attrition of another just because of something ridiculous and misunderstood. No longer shall we bicker as teenage girls do over who is prettier and who gets to wear purple to the prom. Just let it go.

 

Cody Jemes  is the mastermind and head complainer behind the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Has his writing style got you all hot and bothered and you crave more? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, watch him abuse poetry on his blog or if  you are tired of reading? Listen to the podcast he co-hosts.  

That Time of Year

Alas, we have all survived the holiday frenzy that is the Christmas rush. You may have braved the box stores on Black Friday, you may have fought your way through the hordes of last minute shoppers, or you may have wisely planned out your X-Mas shopping all year long. Whatever the case may be, you have endured and arrived at the day. Kick back and relish in your victory. While you are relishing, remember to take a moment to send your thoughts, good vibes, well wishes and prayers to those who cannot be with their families. I know this message is beaten to death this time of year, but it is the goddamn holidays so just do it.

So as we move forward from one season toward another, maybe we can take a token of the manufactured holiday charity we are force fed and apply it. I don’t expect any of you to go forth and save the world or anything, but perhaps just try a be a little better version of yourself. Whether it is the clichéd New Year’s resolution or just a personal goal to cover up that horrendous halitosis it is defiantly achievable.  Here at Bored Shenanigans, we would like to thank all of our listeners for their support, all of our rouges gallery for their participation and last but not least I would like to thank the almighty technical adviser and editor for his tireless effort making our jackassery sound mildly intelligent . We are striving to bring you a better and more classy Bored Shenanigans experience, you know with bigger tits, twice as many explosions and more fucks than you can shake a stick at.  Stay tuned for new developments and remember to keep your mistletoe hung this holiday season.

 

Cody Jemes  is the head writer of the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Need more of him and don’t know where to look? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, leave snarky comments on his  poetry blog or if tired of reading? Listen to the podcast he co -hosts.  

The Horror, The Horror

We are all fucking pussies. No matter how much of a hard-ass we pretend to be. Sure we have all had moments of pure pansy and unadulterated heroism, but all in all, we are pussies. We all have our fears, those things that quiver us to our very soul. The key to all fears is to not allow it to conquer you. We know that this is not any ground breaking ideal or anything, but it holds sway. Can you ever appreciate how good a horror movie is without sitting down, screaming like a girl and enjoying the ride? Or can you ever know how fun a swim in the pond is without jumping in. Being overly cautious can hinder you from experiencing the best pieces of life. Precaution has its place, yet it is imperative to grasp life and go.  So you can be a fucking pussy and still live. You must just step past your hang ups and try to confront such fear. You must embrace what frightens you and make your enemies share your dread. Just remember to step outside yourself and talk to that pretty girl or cognitively react when true fear or danger does rear its head. Sure we are fucking pussies, but we are also capable of great things.

Cody Jemes  is the head writer of the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Need more of him and don’t know where to look? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, leave snarky comments on his  poetry blog or if tired of reading listen to the podcast.  

Urgent News

We are witnessing the increasing impacts of  Cody no longer being a host of Bored Shenanigans. In this last few weeks alone our country experienced record-breaking heat, droughts, and hurricanes, which impacted hundreds of thousands of people and cost our country hundreds of billions of dollars. Experts agree that his ousting by the megalomaniac Reverend caused undue duress upon the very nature of our planet. The scientific consensus is clear and overwhelming; we cannot have a Bored Shenanigans podcast with just Brewer hosting it. The planet will suffer undue travesty for several thousand years.

As public pressure to confront this change builds, we call on the good people of Podcastlandia and those former enemies of Podcastia to immediately freeze any new dictatorial decisions made by the all too powerful editor and to re-invoke what was obviously his  wisest decision, co-hosting with Cody. We believe such action on behalf of The collective podcast galaxy will not only be a sound decision for our world’s entertainment, but also for the well being of its current and future listeners, who deserve the opportunity to enjoy a Bored Shenanigans the way it was meant to be and to have a world not mired with chaos.

For the good of our listeners, fans, friends, loved ones and our nation, and to preserve the quality of life for this and future generations worldwide, we call upon you to join a growing movement around the universe that is committed to preventing extreme and unwarranted decisions being reached by Reverend Brewer and to return Bored Shenanigans back to its true and unaltered form.

Signed,

Ambassador Grainger, (specialist in Podcastia/Podcastopia relations)

Endure, Survive and Fucking Thrive

Forward

Just trudge onward
Do not merely survive
Do not just endure
Thrive amid the chaos
Take the poison of the moment, turn it to the remedy of a lifetime
Remember that pain is the seed that grows great power
Remember your true potential shows when demoralization reaches its apex
Persevere

We are stronger than we allow ourselves to be. We will rise to the occasion and challenges set before us. Nothing should perpetually conquer us. We should all be resilient, take whatever kicked you in the teeth and learn from that situation. Grow from the that scenario and not repeat our own history’s failure.  If we are never confronted, we will never know how strong a weight we can lift. When an instance comes about that quakes us to our core, we must rise above. Do not allow defeat to just set in, if plan a fails or falls through try plan b or c or goddamn double q if it goes that far. Failure is merely success training. This article was not meant to quote every high school guidance counselor’s poster but as a means to raise up our readers. Adversity can bring out our best, if not in the moment maybe once the storm has calmed. Just keep fighting guys.

 

Cody Jemes  is the head writer of the Bored Shenanigans Articulations. Need more of him and don’t know where to look? Check out his articles on the Dallas Mavericks at  Texas Fandom, leave snarky comments on his  poetry blog or if tired of reading listen to the podcast

 

Bored Shenanigans Podcast – Episode 14

TAKE IT OFF! WOOOOOOOOO! That’s what daddy like! Eat each others soup! Show us that Johnfinger! Poppycock! Poppycock! Poppycock!
That’s right it is Bored Shenanigans Live Nudes, as in we just recorded it and it has not been edited. We explain more in the episode, that’s why this a podcast not a blog, but boiled down the episode that was going to go up needs some serious surgery and will most likely be our next From the Vault episode. So, Stay Tuned! And Now…

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Welcome to Bored Shenanigans.     

Welcome to Episode 14: Live Nudes 

Check out the Show Notes for some Pictures