A Steer in a World of Vegetarians (or Damn you YA!)

steer calf[dropcap2]W[/dropcap2]hich would be better, being a freshly born bull calf who gets his nuts chopped off and a year later slaughtered to feed man’s hunger for beef? Or, as a bull calf you get your nuts chopped off just in time to find out that the world has suddenly gone vegetarian? Surely you can see the dilemma. On the one hand, you get to go on living a considerably less purposeful life. On the other you are used for what you were forced to become.

This is how I’m beginning to see the creative industry. Novelists are streaming to young adult literature (YA) because readers appear to be youngening even as they get older. (It’s not because 16 year-olds are suddenly reading more. It’s because their parents are raiding their bookshelves.) Why read at the eighth grade level when one can find books for adults written at the fifth grade level? It just wastes brain energy one could use for sudoku or for understanding the witty quips on Castle.

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The Jerry Bruckheimer Effect

Jerry BruckheimerOnly one man has produced three television series ranked among the top ten simultaneously, Jerry Bruckheimer. Why, you may ask is this important? Now imagine a world without Mr. Jerome Leon Bruckheimer. Total chaos.

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, CSI: NY, Without a Trace, Cold Case, The Amazing Race, Dark Blue and Chase create a short list of his television works. The man is more machine than man, an American entertainment god. When was the last time any of us sat down to an evening of mind-numbing television without suckling from Bruckheimer’s teat?

So answer me this. Which would disrupt the American way of life more cataclysmically? The bombing of the White House? Or the death of Jerry Bruckheimer?

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Hunting the Texas German-Redneck

German immigrants, circa 1911
German immigrants, circa 1911

In Texas some necks are red. Some necks are German. And a select few necks are both. While my experience with German-Americans is limited, I am married to one and so feel entitled to make sweeping generalizations. The chief of which is that German-Americans are the practical, hardworking sort of folk that know a spade from a shovel.

Having originated from Middle America (or Germany itself) and transmogrified in the hill country of Texas, these mythic German settlers have become a sort of super redneck. Let’s just say that if Crawford Texas was a wee bit further south and west (that is to say a wee more German) then George W. would have figured out a way to increase military spending, bring world peace, cut taxes and balance the budget all while discovering a better-adapted wine grape, and all in his first term.

But alas, these super rednecks of German heritage (let’s call them ROGHs) prefer a behind the scenes sort of benevolence, and so few have heard of them.

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