Thursday, June 11, 2009

A Mighty, Enduring Monument

We at Atricus Industries have observed with some feelings of upset that erectile dysfunction advertisements tend to show middle aged, attractive couples giggling and winking at the camera using all sorts of circumlocutions and bland euphemisms to treat the subject of penile turgidity. The truth is, more often than not, that the party looking for the sustained erection is actually a lonely, ancient, male human being. The corollary truth is that the mild vasodilators that the lily-livered commercial "medication" peddlers offer to ameliorate erectile dysfunction simply miss the mark for this true demographic. It is for this purpose that we at Atricus Industries present a medication that not only provides vasodilation, but turbocharges the cardio-pulmonary system.

Obelisk will cause mighty, stone-like monuments to rise from the wastelands of decrepit flesh. Although shunting blood to the penis from the extremities of the body may result in tingling of the limbs, unconsciousness, and the mild risk of death, the mighty erection itself remains for hours, possibly days. The subject is encouraged to position himself supine, take the pill, and be prepared to disengage from the world. Person(s) attending to the subject may need to place him on his side in the very unlikely event of unconscious vomiting. My assistant Ms. Groovy Jones has commented that, although she herself is a sensitive lover and "digs chatting," she has heard "through the grapevine" that for many women consciousness is pretty far down the list of requisite conditions in a sexual partner.

We are yet accepting research subjects. You must be a male, 85 or older. This project is in co-operation with Whispering Knolls Home for Mature Women.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


There is a great fiction being perpetrated jointly by the government, the diet industry, and the exercise confederation that poor diet and lack of physical activity conspire to make people fat. We have previously argued that the modern diet and processed foods are essential to the progress of the species, but we can all use a little more exercise. Who, however, has time during the busy day to travel to a gym? Because we are deeply concerned about our fellow man my assistant, Ms. Groovy Jones, and I have had a humble sideline research project simmering for a half decade or so that has finally borne fruit. We introduce to the world here, Snoozercise.

No human drive is stronger than the will to survive (known within the Atricusian Paradigm as "The Will To Not Die"). This is why people struggle to semiconsciousness and grab the remote when they have left the TV on and are assaulted by the voice of Ron Popeil at 2:30 A.M.* By firmly attaching weights to the chest of a sleeping person and compressing the available lungspace, the body must subconsciously struggle during the autonomous breathing of deep sleep to supply the brain with oxygen. This struggle is what constitutes exercise. The exercise of muscles in or near the core area of the body constitutes the best possible value per minute of work. Snoozercise is an almost safe and possibly effective way to convert time otherwise occupied in unconsciousness to time excercising.

Check with your physician before starting this or any exercise programme.

* Ms. Jones attempted to discourage me from this exercise of humor, believing that it was beneath me. I assured her that my readers have a fine taste for well-crafted hilarity involving figures from the popular culture. I suspect Ms. J simply didn't "get it."

Saturday, June 6, 2009


We have recently been having some difficulty with our iPhones. My assistant, Ms. Groovy Jones, complained that she was experiencing poor reception. Having her remove the mobile from her cleavage improved both transmission and reception for a few weeks, but then even I - an expert in the care and feeding of all sorts of gadgets - noticed degraded performance in my appliance. Ms. J scheduled appointments for us at the Apple Store and we met at the appointed hour with some snooty little fellow who examined the devices briefly, and airily pronounced that they were no longer under warranty because primitive "submersion detectors" made it plain (in his walnut-sized brain) that the phones had been soaked in water. I protested, stared into his beady, rodent-like eyes, and told him that his bullshit detector was flashing like a pulsar. Security was called and a brief scuffle ensued. I'm above going into the nasty details of the subsequent valiant battle against oppression, but suffice it to say Ms. Jones conducted herself well and that the punk with the pepper spray got back as much as he gave. Apple will be paying for a new pair of pants for me, and Ms. Jones is prepared to swear in a court of law she was groped.

We returned to the lab and subsequently discovered that the iPhone has a small and diabolically clever miniature moisture sprayer attached to a submicro circuit. A reverse assembly of that circuit reveals that when an Apple employee enters an appointment for any of a number of complaints that could be explained by water damage, main Apple servers send the encrypted subcarrier cellular signal to the appliance which activates the misting device which triggers the detector for a "positive" reading thus allowing Apple to say that the problem was caused by water damage. With that declaration, the iPhone has traveled into another county and the Apple deputies are forced to stop at the line, stomp their feet, throw down their hats, and say "aw, shucks, we cain't help ya no more, gad-durn it!"

This war is far from over. Feel free to send cash donations to "Restore Apple's Gadgetry Excellence" (RAGE) in care of us. Ms. Jones is very upset. Thank you.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Chemical Man

As pre-man scrabbled for a living in parts of Africa and the Near Orient he learned to cook, which made more types of food easier to digest. The creature became Cooking Man a million and a half years ago and evolved past his fellows, leaving the monkeys to the forest. As Cooking Man wandered around and finally hopped off the glacier some 15,000 years ago, he started cultivating plants and animals, and City Man - the agriculturalist - was born. Again, modernizing man broadened his culinary world through the taming of foods. City Man prevailed against the hunter-gatherer Cooking Man, but kept his culinary skills. Several hundred years ago man harnessed the power of the machine, and Industrial Man with his milled and processed foods took over the world leaving relatively primitive City Man to perform his services, and primitive Cooking Man to point at on his vacations.

We are now at the cusp of a new age, and Chemical Man is poised to supercede Industrial Man. Chemical Man makes the best use of modern medicines, scientifically formulated and processed foods such as the Twinkie, and will undoubtedly leave mere Industrial Man behind in the stink of diesel and coal smoke. Chemical Man eats whatever comes out of the modern lab and is plump and happy. Since the age of Italian city-state politics mankind has tended to suspect that heaviness evidences prosperity and good health. Chemical Man says and does what he wants, has sex when and with whomever he pleases, and eats until he's about to pop. It was only during the 19th century that the busybody Christers started associating body weight with the fabricated "sin" of "gluttony." People who oppose this so-called "hedonism" are selfish, narrow-minded folks who are unhappy unless they are in someone else's business. As Eric Hoffer noted, "people with business worth minding generally mind their own business."

Chemical Man's lifestyle makes him happy (just look at the faces of children as they eat cotton candy or enjoy an ice cream cone!), and unless we all participate and breed the next generation of happy, rotund, self-satisfied, chemically complex men, we will stagnate and die.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I Made Tank Man

We have decided to break nearly 20 years of silence. Two decades ago Ms. Groovy Jones and I were conducting research in Beijing on the relationship of "random behaviors" and "rigid societies." One of our subjects, whose name we are yet keeping private, was hypnotized and instructed to see the first large vehicle he came across as a taxi and hail it. We intended to document the response of the driver. We had anticipated that the subject would attempt to stop a large truck. Obviously our programming was defective, and the subsequent behavior of our subject has been the result of a generation of discussion. The fault lies entirely at the tiny, well-pedicured feet of Ms. Jones who was relatively inexperienced at subtle, subliminal suggestion, her gifts tending toward the much more obvious and vulgar.

In any event, the iconic "lone rebel" of Tiananmen Square wasn't. The record must be settled.

In other news, the People's Republic of China has recently extended an invitation to Ms. Jones and me to study the effects of "creeping democracy and social media" in that marvelous land, guests of the government. We are delighted by this unexpected and generous offer by the PRC.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Toilet Paper and Personality

We have been inundated with questions over the course of the morning from people who are curious about what psychological insights may be gleaned from how they position their toilet paper rolls, "over" or "under." We are, as many long-time readers know, experts in the field having written previously for many highly respected journals on the psychology of hygiene ritual.

People who install their toilet paper so that the tissue comes out from behind and under the roll tend to be sexually promiscuous, devious, and untrustworthy. Many "rock and roll" musicians, for example, practice the "under" method as part of their dark, salacious lifestyles. My assistant, Ms. Groovy Jones, is a recovering underholic.

People who set up their toilet paper so that the tissue comes over the top are much more likely to be aggressive, insensitive power-mongerers. Examples of such personalities include Napoleon, an early proponent of rolled paper in France, well before its "official" invention some sixty or seventy years later. Former President Richard Nixon is alleged to have also fallen into this camp, although it is hotly contested by hygiene rituologists.

The most balanced people are those who forgo the entire toilet paper convention and refuse to participate within a system that says "put your toilet paper on a roll bar." Simply placing a roll on its side is much more likely to evidence even-temperedness, balanced personality, and free-thinkingness, although some preliminary evidence also suggests fickleness, lack of commitment, and weakness of personality.

We hope our insights lead to a clearing of this complex and fascinating issue.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Hard Times for Research

An Open Letter to Lovers of Science:

We recently learned that one of our grants will NOT be renewed this fall. The fertile field of Tactile Telekinesis is one in which my lovely research assistant, Ms. Groovy Jones, and I have generated a great deal of material. For the uninitiated, tactile telekinetics is the field of mind control that merges physicality with the mental aspects. In Tactile Telekinetics I excercise certain thought powers, e.g. "I wish to cause you pain," and my hand telekinetically moves to slap you in the face which causes you pain and completes the thought process. This is Tactile Telekinetics.

Some small-minded bean counter in Washington D.C. has failed to distinguish this legitimate, fascinating, and lucrative (for us) science from simple thrashing around and has axed our grant. Well, he has a boss too. We are appealing this myopic attack on our science, and encourage you - dear, esteemed reader, whoever you are - to write to your legislator about our case.

Thank you,

Dr. Gerald Atricus and Ms. Groovy Jones