Saturday, May 13, 2006


Dear Indigna,

California is incorporating the sexual orientation/gender identity of historical figures into its textbooks. The goal, apparently, is to show children that gays, lesbians, bi’s and transsexuals are widely represented among our most accomplished historical figures. What, exactly, are they hoping to achieve?

Panicked, Deeply Closeted Public Figure
Decline to State, USA

Dear Deep,

Think about it. “Not only did she write famous poetry, but she also had a penis!” It’s all good! Clearly, one’s accomplishments cannot possibly be correctly assessed without weighting for gender, ethnicity, race, origin, religion, quality of childhood, socioeconomic status, gender-identity, and political and sexual orientation. So, for example, if you are a young, impoverished, black, bisexual Arab-Jewish hermaphroditic prostitute who grew up in a 16,000 square-foot apartment on the Upper East Side, and who has been abused for being a Republican, anything you write is automatically a best-seller and literary classic that will be the subject of dissertations for generations to come (see the collected works of “J.T. LeRoy” and “A Million Little Pieces” created by the fictitious “James Frey,” among others). If you’re just a regular joe writing about your privileged suburban life (like John Cheever), fuggedaboudit.

Double Down

Dear Indigna,

Turns out, the NSA has been collecting data on, like, every phone call made in the U.S. since 2001!! What on earth do they hope to learn from all that?

Screamer, AL

Dear Scared,

Fear no more. It is clear that the President is simply trying to solve the problem of the national debt. You see, through no fault of his own (excepting the tax cuts, war expenditures, and massive increases in bureaucracy and domestic surveillance), the President has found himself with a deficit that will likely bankrupt the country in ten or twelve years. Even though he will no longer be in office, and thus shouldn’t give a rat’s ass, he has decided to risk it all and is using this new database of numbers that are “significant” to people, along with everybody’s birthdates, numerologized pet’s names, shoe sizes, etc., along with a computer the size of your living room, to figure out the winning numbers in every lottery in the nation! Once he has the golden numbers and wins Mega-Millions® from these lottos, he will take that haul to either the races or Las Vegas, depending on how the stars align. There he will “double-down” or “bet the farm” and likely solve our nation’s debt crisis in a single roll of the dice and/or freak laming of the front runners. Once he has won a few trillion, well, re-election seems certain.

What’s that you say? He’s already had two terms? Listen any fella who can erase the national debt with a simple “lucky seven” deserves a third term, don’t you think?

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Spitting Image

Dear Indigna,

China has warned its traveling populace that “spitting, slurping food and cutting in line . . . are sometimes not tolerated abroad.” Apparently some prissy Singapore hotels “are upset with Chinese tourists spitting in their rooms and smoking in bed.” Isn’t this just another example of the kind of Big Brother authoritarianism we’ve come to expect from the Chinese and Singapore governments?

Spital-In-The-Street, Lincolnshire, England

Dear Ptoooey,

When my cousins visit from Shanghai, can they stay at your house?

The Waiting Is The Hardest Part

Dear Indigna,

Should Kaiser be put out of business for yanking all its kidney transplant patients from their high-quality programs at renowned hospitals and forcing them to languish untreated in a single, inexperienced Kaiser-run kidney program with double the death rate of other hospitals? I understand they even “denied transplants of ideally matched kidneys.” You know, now that I think about it, I think everyone involved in these actions should be forced to donate both of their own kidneys to these patients as recompense.

San Francisco, CA

Dear Furious,

Why? I mean, in the immortal words of Don Corleone, “it’s just business.” We’ve all been having to tighten our purse strings lately. Kaiser is just trying to improve the bottom line. The “waiting list” for kidneys simply wasn’t long enough when patients were distributed among programs that actually had the capacity and expertise to do the transplants. By cramming all the patients into one untested and unprepared program Kaiser increased its waiting list to at least 2,000 overnight. Obviously, it is far more economical to make kidney patients wait indefinitely than to actually perform a transplant, if you see what I mean. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see many more so-called managed “healthcare” providers rolling out this type of “transplant” program.


Dear Indigna,

I just read that the Republican Congress is submitting a $70 billion tax cut package that will benefit nearly every taxpayer with income over $100,000 but less than 30% of everybody under $75,000. At the same time, they are planning to raise the debt limit to nearly double what it was when Bush took office. How can they possibly justify this?

Why, AZ

Dear Stumped,

It’s pathetically obvious but as you apparently live in a place where there aren’t a lot of people making more than $100K I will spell it out for you very slowly and clearly: people with a lot of money buy more expensive stuff than you other people. I’d be willing to bet you shop at Wal-Mart (average tab: $15.37). Well, those folks in the top tier shop at places like Tiffany (average tab: $52,500), Bloomingdale’s (average tab: $33,892), and the local Bentley dealer (average tab: $300,000 plus tax and license). In other words, wealthier people spend tons more money than you, thus boosting the economy! And the more money they have, the more they can spend! Duh! Now, most people in the lowest socioeconomic echelons have never even been in a Tiffany or Bloomie’s, and a vanishingly small percentage drive Bentleys. Why should we give them more money to spend on cheap plastic shit that’ll probably break immediately anyway (adding to the landfill problem), tacky, ill-fitting polyester clothes (adding to “visual pollution”), and food you would never find on the menu at an upscale restaurant (okra, fried pork rinds, generic beer). Instead, imagine the benefits of giving extra money to people who will spend it on the very best quality durable goods (Bentleys), tasteful yet trendy clothing (Bloomingdale’s), gorgeous jewels (Tiffany) and the choicest meats, the freshest and most organic vegetables, and the ultimate mind-bending desserts (chocolate-broccoli tart topped with liver ice cream) served with the rarest exotic intoxicants (fermented viper toxin) in sophisticated, candlelit, snotty dining establishments at which someone from Why, AZ would never, ever be able to get a reservation. Thus, wealthy people not only are responsible for driving the entire economy with their free-wheeling spending habits, but they also improve the aesthetics of the country by setting the example of good taste, reduce solid waste by avoiding cheap plastic shit, and maintain the health of the populace (that makes more than $100K) through a high quality diet. Now, shouldn’t we reward all that?

Besides, the tax cut isn’t expected to cause a major economic meltdown for, like, 10 years. The midterm election is this year. Why should anyone in the Administration care what happens in 10 years? They won’t be in office anymore.

Monday, May 08, 2006


Dear Indigna,

Did I hear this right? The Pentagon is planning to develop bionic arms to replace those of war amputees. The arms would be controlled by thought, just like natural arms. In theory this sounds like a dream come true, but I’m no fool. I saw “The Six Million Dollar Man.” I’ve even seen “Robocop” and all the “Terminator” movies. And don’t even get me started on “Blade Runner”! I’m getting a little freaked out here. I mean, except for the first guy (“We can make him better than he was!”) all those other “experiments” in cyborgia turned out pretty bad. I fervently believe that we should try to restore the vets to as close to their pre-war state as we can, but can we really trust the government to make them whole without expecting anything (COMbat! Gesundheit) in return?

Vietnam Vet
Your Town, U.S.A.

Dear Vet,

The way I understand it, the government has nothing but the best intentions in mind. They hope to develop a whole array of “bionic” or thought-controlled artificial limbs and body parts that will eventually result in a kind of plug-n-play populace. This is great news for those of us who don’t believe in exercising or eating right, but is primarily intended to heal U.S. troops who have suffered grievous injuries as a result of combat. Now, look at things the way Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld does. With recruitment down, retirements up, and those fellas you’ve played poker with all those years turning on you, what’re ya gonna do? Face it, man. You’ve reached the “buy or build” moment. Well, clearly the United States, the world’s only superpower, cannot hire some second-rate buncha mercenaries (“buy”) to fight our wars for us! Instead, Rummy, hopes to "build," in his own timeless words, the means to “go to war with the Army you . . . might want or wish to have have in the future” instead of “the Army you have.”

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Clean Plate Club

Dear Indigna,

A family in Urbandale, IA has been banned from a local “all-you-can-eat” buffet restaurant because, according to the manager, they “waste too much food.” The proprietors complained that these customers would pile up a plate, take one bite, throw the rest away and then return for more. I understand that the manager actually told the complaining woman that “it is folly to waste while hungry women and children don't have enough to eat.” Is this a legal reason to toss someone out of a restaurant?

Hungry Heifer
Hippo, KY

Dear Hungry,

C’mon. What do you expect when you eat at a place called “Mom’s”? I call this an example of truth in advertising. My house, my rules, like it or lump it. If you don’t finish, you won’t be a member of the Clean Plate Club of America! Fine then. If you won’t eat what’s on your plate you can just go to bed hungry like the starving children in Africa, or the starlets in Los Angeles. And don’t give me any of your lip! Maybe next time your eyes won’t be bigger than your stomach. That’ll be $5.95.

Virgin Territory

Dear Indigna,

A Berlin whorehouse has begun offering “special deals for virgins with prostitutes trained in the delicate art of catering for customers who have never had sex.” The madam of the house defines the term “virgin” to include anyone who has “never been in a brothel before.” I have two questions:

1) Can the hookers really be so good that it feels “like a virgin” to be with them?

2) If I have been a lifelong slut but have never been to a brothel, does that mean I am still a virgin?

3) Would a gift certificate be a good birthday present for my son?

Racking My Brain For the Boy Who Has Everything
Berlin, Germany

Dear Racking,

1) Are you kidding me?? It’s been dubbed “Best Little Whorehouse in Berlin” three years running by Die Welt! The bimbos are that good. Everyone knows that getting teenage boys interested in losing their virginity is so “delicate” a business that the harlots and molls must learn a lot of special techniques and skills to make sure that if a guy enters as pure as the driven snow, he exits as filthy as Manhattan slush. For example, the strumpet has to be a woman. And naked.

Actually, that’s pretty much it. Oh, and your prices have to be right. Some boys don’t get a lot of allowance.

2) It only works that way if you’re a guy.

3) See answer #1, but are you sure he’s a “virgin”? If he is “40 or older” and still unmarried, chances are good. You can rest assured that the floozies and trollops at this particular bawdyhouse are “aware of how much courage it takes to go to a brothel the first time.” Especially one that caters to virgins. Make sure his poker buddies don’t find out.


Dear Indigna,

What’s this I hear about the government thinking of razing FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) just as we enter hurricane season?!?!?

Still In a Trailer From Last Year
Bay St. Louis, MS

Dear Still,

You are correct. The government has determined that FEMA as it was structured under Michael Brown was non-functional (no surprise there!). But you know how it is these days. It’s usually cheaper to throw away the broken object and just buy a new one. Problem is, the Bush administration is having a hard time finding a replacement that will run under Homeland Security. The President doesn’t want to have to replace his operating system, nor does he want to go the easy route of just having an external FEMA because that would involve plugging it directly into the Oval Office. Until he finds a hack that will let him run FEMA under DHS, I recommend stocking up on lots of water, canned food, plywood, canoes, hatchets, distress flares, blankets, short-wave radios and prayer. Either that or move to Canada.