September 29, 2006

It's Like "Eat It" All Over Again

Weird Al is, quite possibly, the most unappreciated comic genius ever to grace our planet. I heard "White and Nerdy" this morning on the way into work, and I honestly almost had to pull over I was laughing so damned hard.

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September 28, 2006

Next Week's Column. . . TODAY!

"Can You Ear Me Now?" c. Ryan Rhodes, Sept. 27, 2006

I'm one of those people who absolutely hates going to the hospital. Not that there are people who really enjoy going to hospitals. . . well, except for maybe doctors. The point is, if given a choice between removing my thumb with a pliers, or going to a hospital, let's just say I'd have to put some serious thought into it.

Alas, sometimes going to a hospital is simply unavoidable. Generally, I have the healthy constitution of a Kodiak bear, but even my body sputters every once in awhile and I have to make the dreaded doctor's appointment.

Last week, thanks to an unfortunate experience during a jiu-jitsu tournament, I developed a case of cauliflower ear. For those not familiar with this medical condition, let me explain: Cauliflower ear is somewhat common if you're active in boxing- or grappling-related sports. If your ear is either struck or bent violently, the skin can separate from the ear cartilage, causing a bubble of blood and liquid to bulge out. If this doesn't sound like fun all by itself, there's more! If left unattended, the cartilage, separated from the skin—it's only source of blood—can die and basically shrivel up, resulting in a drastically deformed ear.

Faced with this prognosis, coupled with my stubborn refusal to visit a doctor, I opted for a couple of days of self-surgery. Now, being the M.D. that I am, self-surgery consisted of me dropping a sewing needle in boiling water, and then jabbing the needle into my ear. It was a successful—and righteously painful—procedure. Bloody liquid flowed freely out of my ear and down my neck. I then squeezed the remaining liquid out, and hoped for the best.

Unfortunately, the best did not transpire. The needle hole quickly knitted and closed, and the blood-filled bulge re-asserted itself, and it did so larger than before, probably because there was more blood on hand since some moron went and jabbed his ear with a sewing needle.

disappointed in my failed first attempt at self-surgery, I was nonetheless optimistic enough to try again. Again I boiled the needle, aimed it at my ear, and proceeded to puncture the resurgent hematoma. What had once just been a merely a righteously painful procedure had graduated to the next pain level, that of tear-jerkingly excruciating. Painful though it was, the result was the same, and the bulge spewed forth its pent up bloody reservoir.

Unfortunately, I didn't realize I was dealing with the Obi-Wan Kenobi of cauliflower ears: "Strike me down and I'll become more powerful than you can possibly imagine." Sure enough, I woke the next day to a case of cauliflower ear that was now almost blocking the entrance to my ear canal. Clearly, I was losing this battle, and I quite frankly had lost the will to attempt a third self-surgery.

Defeated, I picked up the phone, putting it up to my undamaged ear, and made a doctor's appointment, which I quickly learned was probably what I should have done in the first place, since I immediately saw that they had medical instruments far more sophisticated than my sewing needle. Additionally, the doctor seemed to know exactly what she was doing, which was a distinct advantage I lacked.

As I walked out of the hospital with my professionally drained and stitched ear, I reflected on how stupid my stubbornness and my hatred of hospitals is. Never again would I put off going to the doctor when it's warranted.

Except for that appointment I have this week to get the stitches taken out. I think I can do that myself.

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September 27, 2006

As you can see. . .


I went the medical route for my cauliflower ear, when I realized jabbing it with a sewing needle just wasn't going to cut it (pun intended). The head-wrap is precautionary for 24 hours. Stitches will come out next week, and I'll be wearing a head-gear during jiu-jitsu for, like, ever.

Yes, the photo is crappy. Apologies for that. The girlfriend took it, so don't blame me.

Posted by Ryan at 08:17 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

September 26, 2006

You Know What? fuck T

This shit's just starting to annoy me.

Some innocuous Danish cartoons depicting Mohammed get published, and Islamic radicals lose their shit, so much so that newspapers worldwide opt not to run said cartoons, citing all sorts of limp-wristed bullshit reasons.

The Pope, the GOD-DAMNED POPE, quotes criticism of Islam and the Prophet Mohammad issued by a Byzantine Emperor from the fucking 14TH CENTURY, who said "such as his (Mohammed's) command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." And guess what? Islamic radical shitheads lose their shit, killing a nun and burning a fucking church. So the Pope, the GOD-DAMNED POPE, has to issue an apology for fucking quoting a Byzantine emporer.

I mean, Jesus! At what point do you stand up and say "No, fuck YOU! We're not going to continue to tip-toe around you're God-damned religion because a bunch of radical shit-smears within the Islamic ranks can't help but lose their shit over every little thing?!"

Because you know, and I realize this point has been made before, but it bears repeating: If you go on a fucking killing and torching rampage every time somebody hints that your religion may consist of violent tendencies, maybe, JUST MAYBE, you're proving that fucking point."

I mean, good God, I've watched South Park absolutely tear Jesus a new a-hole. Way back in 1997, I watched an early South Park clip of Jesus and Santa duking it out in Mortal Kombat fashion, with Jesus saying to Santa "You fucking pussy!" And that was fucking hysterical. Jesus has been an acceptable kick-dog for as long as I can remember. But dare to take a zing at Mohammed, and you have to consider the possibility of a worldwide radical Islamic shit storm.

Jesus you can throw down the stairs, smear with poop, put a butt plug in his ass and burn a swastika into his chest, and there would be a very real chance of getting it hailed as a work of art and put on display in some New York museum. Put a bomb turban on Mohammed, and you have to fear for your God-damned life.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but if you're a fan of free speech, this type of self-censorship in the interests of placating a sect of lunatic fundamentalists ought to have you deeply concerned. I'm not saying there should be depictions of Mohammed with a butt plug up his ass, but good God! Some leeway here, is all I'm asking. Maybe depicting Mohammed standing next to, or looking at, a butt plug, possibly considering it. That would be a nice start.

It has to be empowering as hell to know that, if your religion is slighted in the least, you can raise an angry mob to scare the bejeezers out of the worldwide media; that you can instill a sense of fear of reprisal so powerful, people will refrain from showing Mohammed holding a scimitar, or even showing Mohammed at all.

I mean, Jesus, what does it say when I hesitate to save and publish this post? Or that I could end up taking it down later? Something's wrong here. Very wrong.

UPDATE: Or, to put it another way:


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September 25, 2006


I won my first match pretty handedly, 10 to 2. It went the full five minutes, and my opponent was tougher than the score would indicate, so I was freakin' exhausted.

My second match, I thought I was in control, leading 4 to 0, when my opponent scissored my arm between his legs and proceeded to crank a technique that I'm convinced very nearly broke my arm, and I barely had time to tap out. My arm is still sore.

Oh, and I have a nice minor case of cauliflower ear now, which is just great. I've drained it with a sewing needle, but if it gets any bigger, I'll probably have to go the professional route.

I still love jiu-jitsu though. It's awesome.


Here I am after a particularly refreshing release of flatulence. Okay, actually, this is a candid picture of me taken before the tournament started. Not flattering, I know, but so few pictures of me are.


Here I am, winning, in all my blurry, digital-image glory.


Here I am winning again, this time with just as much blurriness, with just a hint of fuzzy.

Posted by Ryan at 09:18 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

September 22, 2006

I'll Take One Butt Kicking To Go, Please

This Saturday, I'll be competing in my first grappling tournament since I concluded my high school wrestling career on the island of Okinawa back in 1993.

Of course, wrestling has since morphed into jiu-jitsu, which I've only been training in for just over a year, so I'm kind of nervous, but not really. I'm more curious than nervous. It should be an interesting experience, provided I don't get hurt, which would suck.

Anyway, I'm sure I'll write all about it here once I get back. Enjoy your weekend, random ThunderJournal readers!

Posted by Ryan at 10:59 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Next Week's Column. . . TODAY!

"Gambling It All On Vegas" c. Ryan Rhodes, Sept. 16, 2006

Because my job requires that I travel from time to time, I found myself in Las Vegas a couple weeks ago, attending a technical conference held at Caesar's Palace.

I had never before been to Las Vegas, so I was a little curious as to what to expect while visiting the city "Bugsy" Segal built. Although I know this will come as a shock to some of you, I feel I must warn you that, in Las Vegas, there's a lot of . . . GAMBLING . . . going on. What's more, everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, in Las Vegas is designed to make you want to gamble.

Consider, for example, the Las Vegas airport. No sooner had I de-boarded the airplane when I was confronted by slot machines. I was so surprised to see slot machines in an airport, I felt compelled to gamble a quick $5. I battled the slot machine for about 10 minutes before moving on to the baggage claim. In the end, I finished about 25 cents down. I shook my fist in defiance at the machine, and continued my trek through the airport.

The Las Vegas airport baggage claim is a marketing gold mine. I was stuck there for 45 minutes, literally surrounded by Las Vegas advertising. There were banners and broadcasts proclaiming shows by Celine Dion, Jerry Seinfeld, Elton John and countless other celebrities. Heck, even Carrot Top had a banner up. Seriously, CARROT TOP! When was the last time you saw Carrot Top in ANYTHING? I thought the man had died of a carrot-related disease. Well, for 45 minutes, I was stuck there, looking at Carrot Top, waiting for my luggage. It was the most brilliant exercise of advertising to a completely helpless and captive audience I've seen in recent memory. I couldn't go anywhere until I got my luggage, and until I get my luggage, I was reminded that Carrot Top still exists. Pure genius.

Once at Caesar's Palace, I was informed that my room wouldn't be ready for another hour, and I was encouraged to check my luggage and just kind of wait around. Of course, waiting for an hour in a hotel/casino, I felt compelled to gamble. Okay, I didn't feel compelled, but I figured "why not?" I mean, anything to get my mind off of Carrot Top, right? After breezing through a quick $20, I vowed not to gamble again for the rest of the trip, which of course meant that I'd be gambling again later that evening.

Once my room was ready, I settled in to watch a little television, only to discover that the television channel selection at Caesar's Palace was carefully chosen so that there's nothing at all to watch, so you're better off gambling. No HBO. Nothing. Just channel after channel about Las Vegas. After two days of Caesar's Palace programming, I know more about Las Vegas than I do about my own hometown. Disgusted with the hotel television, I went downstairs to gamble. And, after winning about $30, I decided to call it a night. I was $9.75 up. I had Las Vegas in my back pocket.

Or at least I did until I realized I'd forgotten to pack a shaving razor, which prompted me to take a walking journey around the Las Vegas strip, determined to find a Mach 3 razor, which I discovered is practically impossible, so I had to opt for a five pack of those horrible, torturous, plastic scalp-gashing throw-aways that cost almost exactly $9.75. I also discovered that 7-11 convenience stores in Las Vegas also have their very own slot machines, which struck me as rather odd. I mean, what's the point? Are you going to go to 7-11 to pick up a six pack of soda, a bag of chips, and a gallon of gambling?

I spent the rest of my Las Vegas stay marching from the technical conference to my hotel room, with only limited time for additional gambling and general sight-seeing. My overall impression of Las Vegas was that it's a fun to place to visit, but I'm glad I don't have to live there, at least not until they get a more robust supply of Mach 3 razors in stock.

As a gambling side-note, I left Caesar's Palace about $40 down overall, but upon arriving at the airport I learned my flight was delayed an hour, so of course I sat down in front of a slot machine to do some gambling. And I won $130!

It was almost enough to make me forget about Carrot Top.

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September 20, 2006

Bumper Sticker Seen on the way to Work

"What Would Scooby Do?"

Posted by Ryan at 11:47 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Be Sure To Read Rambling Rhodes


You'd be surprised how often you can use this image to augment your argument. ANY argument.

Posted by Ryan at 09:09 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 19, 2006

Flemaski VS. Velveeta

It's the only Congressional race that matters.


Posted by Ryan at 01:31 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 18, 2006

Just so we're clear

For the Augie ben Doggies of the world, this is not a weather-related journal. This is a ThunderJournal. This is MY ThunderJournal *ass strike*


And, as LearnedFoot points out, MY ThunderJournal is very ass-centric when it comes to content. *ass strike*


I also dabble in the occasional bout of profanity, although I would argue it occurs with far more regularity than the 30 percent LearnedFoot suggests, that fucker. *ass strike*


Yes, my ThunderJournaling has been somewhat weak due to my Las Vegas trip and subsequent catching up and shit. That should not lull any of you into believing this is in any way a weather-related journal. You cock-knobs. *ass strike*


Nick Coleman still can't write to save his guilt-ridden, hopeless, pathetic soul, and he has the sense of humor of a mafia hit-man (which, to be truthful, is probably being unfair to mafia hit-men, who could in fact be a very jovial lot, but I wouldn't know one way or another, so I just imagine them to be dour and serious).

Uh. . . oh yeah. . . *ass strike*


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Fork Poetry

Caroline says: Where have all the forks gone?!

Ryan says: The eternal question.

Ryan says: So I turned and said to Juan, "Where have all the forks gone?!"

Caroline says: I don't ge tit

Caroline says: jesus

Ryan says: And Juan, he turned, and said to me, "The forks, you see, have ceased to be."

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September 17, 2006


Augie ben Doggie is a dumbass.

Like, a MAJOR dumbass.

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September 15, 2006

Anybody know why?

Does anybody out there know why, sometimes, only one Google ad will appear up top instead of three? And why is the one ad that runs always about Hurricane Katrina, or something about Gulf relief, even though I haven't written about Katrina in, like, almost a year.

Typically, this wouldn't bother me, but when only one ad appears, it wrecks the whole visual flow, such as it is, of my ThunderJournal. When there are three ads, there's some sense of continuity. With one ad showing up there, it looks like a thumb sticking up or something. Totally harshes my mellow. Anyway, if anybody knows why this happens from time to time, I'd appreciate if you'd share.

UPDATE: Er, nevermind, I guess.

Posted by Ryan at 02:54 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 11, 2006

Gambling VS. Whoring Update

Gambling - 5.

Whoring - 0.

Oh, and Caesar's Palace is freakin' huge.

Posted by Ryan at 04:58 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

September 10, 2006

Viva Las Vegas

I'll be leaving for Las Vegas for another tech conference early tomorrow morning, and I'll be returning late Wednesday evening. I'm not sure what to expect at this particular conference, so I don't know if I'll be able to access my ThunderJournal. Chances are good I probably will, but I don't know for certain. Besides that, ThunderJournaling while in Las Vegas would seem to indicate a pretty pathetic pathology and a severe lack of a life.

Posted by Ryan at 08:04 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 08, 2006


"It's not the pessimists who will save the West. It'll be those who believe the West is worth saving."

Second place: "I'm not saying they should pretend we live in the Republic of Happy Bunnies Who Pee Champagne, but for God's sake, sometimes you'd think the bread lines snaked from the Hoovervilles to the soup kitchens again."

Posted by Ryan at 10:29 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


The pizza place/credit union/$5,600 pizza situation has been resolved. So, I won't be naming the pizza place, although I came close, and there will be no Rambling Rhodes complete and total meltdown.

That is all.

Posted by Ryan at 08:04 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 07, 2006


I think there are plenty of my friends and family who would advocate my repeated use of this product.

Key Question: "Why should I care if my poop stinks?" It's a must-click link.

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September 06, 2006

James Bond Really Let Himself Go


He looks shaken. . . not stirred.

Posted by Ryan at 02:43 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 05, 2006


The $1,870 pizza bill is back on my payment history!

What's worse, I've been informed that debit cards don't have the same protections as credit cards, so if I can't sort this out, I could be shit out of luck, and shit out of $1,870. The pizza place, so far, seems genuinely concerned about the situation and willing to work it out.

If I don't start seeing results soon, I'm going to have to seek legal recourse, I'm thinking. That, and you can be damned sure I'll be naming the pizza place here, and trying to generate as much bad press about it as I possibly can.

I don't fuck around when it comes to my money.

UPDATE: The pizza place has spoken with its credit card processing company and they've reportedly taken care of the problem, but it may take awhile to be reflected at my credit union. The pizza place has been very great to work with and they were genuinely concerned with getting this problem rectified.

UNBELIEVABLE UPDATE: Okay, so they tell me the problem should be 100 percent resolved. At 4:30 p.m., I check my account balance, and it's about minus, MINUS, -$5,500 what it should be. I call the credit union, and they tell me there are TWO additional pizza purchases now showing at $1,870 each. So, that makes THREE overall phantom pizza purchases of $1,870 each, for a grand total of $5,610. This is fucking insane! I'll give it some time, and I'll call the pizza place tomorrow, AGAIN, to find out what the fuck is going on. I'm about to blow my fucking top. If it weren't for how sincere the pizza place guy is about fixing this shit, I'd post the pizza place name, as commenter Bob has asked. Plus going to the Better Business Bureau. Plus possible legal action. I'm willing to extend my "benefit of the doubt" status only so far. As a certain dead celebrity who shall remain nameless would say. . . CRIKEY!

Dark Knight. Heath Ledger. Batman. The Joker. Dark Knight. Heath Ledger. Batman. The Joker. Dark Knight. Heath Ledger. Batman. The Joker.

Posted by Ryan at 10:36 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

September 03, 2006

This and That

Yesterday, I did THIS.

Today, I did THAT.

And, THAT, was freakin' cool.

Posted by Ryan at 07:40 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 01, 2006


There's been an update to the "Nick Coleman is a Doo Doo Head" post. Personally, I'm not sure what to make of it, but I figured I should call attention to it all the same.

Posted by Ryan at 08:36 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

I was just thinking

I think it would be great if I was financially independent. That would probably be pretty sweet.

If you'd like to contribute to the "Ryan Rhodes Financial Independence Foundation," you can mail me a check for the amount of your choosing. Cash would also be accepted.

Other than that, have a great Labor Day weekend! ThunderJournaling will no doubt be light.

Posted by Ryan at 12:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
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