October 1993

Caves & Cucumbers #8

The Scoats and Nothing but Scoats Issue

All text and artwork copyright 1993, 1996 by Scoats. All rights reserved. Most wrongs unintentional. Published by Scoats, 6235 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19135-3404. To receive current/future/past issues of C&C via USPS send an SASE for each issue. Originally published - October 1993. Reformated for HTML - April 1996. E-mail: scoats@greylodge.com "Life is shit. The world is shit. This is life as I know it." -The Dead Milkmen

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Welcome to Caves and Cucumbers #8. It's been 11 months since the last issue, but I did put out two 'Toon's from Hell. so I guess that's not too bad. Toons From Hell: Volumes 5 and 6 are available for an SASE each from Scoats, 6235 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, 19134-3404. Specifiy which issue you want. Volume 6 is the conclusion of Volume 5. So you may want to get Volume 5 before Volume 6. In 'Toons 5 and 6, Gloveman and Pinky take on the androgynous Cowperson, a militant cow rights terrorist.

Every issue of Caves and Cukes until now has been a multi-contributor project. This is the first issue where I did everything. There are several reasons for this. 1) no one else contributed anything in recent memory, 2) not having done a C&C for a year, I was sufficently backed up to spew out a whole issue myself, 3) this is kind of a Get Back project, C&C began as the Scoats Quarterly. Thanks go out to P-Nut, Franny and Calvin.

If have you anything to contribute to future issues of Caves and Cucumbers, please mail it to 6235 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19135-3404. Contributions can be anything that fits into C&C's two dimensional monochromatic format. This can include but is not limited to prose, short fiction, recipes, comics, sketchs, artwork, puzzles, and poetry.

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"Yeah, we did it ...and we're gonna do it again."

Last week Russia announced that they dumped toxic waste into the Sea of Japan. They also announced that they plan to do it again next month. Surprisingly Japan was not happy. The Russians said that they will be happy to stop dumping if Japan or the US spent millions of dollars to built storage faciliites for the waste. The toxic waste is from their deteriorating navy stationed on the Pacific coast of Russia. And here I am recycling, avoiding styrofoam and cutting any plastic six-pack rings.

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I am god to one of our cats. She loves the misses who gives her treats, but she worships me. When I pet her head, she has this look of ectasy. When I come in the room she always comes up to me. Anyone who has ever had a cat knows that that is not normal cat behavior. Cats are stand-offish and precious. This one spends five minutes a day revolving around me rubbing my ankles. If I stand still for a second, she is at my feet, the result is that I'm always kicking her.

I have no idea why this little ferocious beast adores me. One of life's little mysteries I suppose. Everyone should have one creature who seems to exist just to adore you.

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"Dreams, they complicate my life". - REM
"To sleep, perchance to dream!" - William Shakespeare
"Perchance to dream... ACK!" - Scoats
par-am-ne-sia a distortion of memory in which experience and fantasy are confused. - Webster's Dictoionary

A little while ago I made a consious attempt to remember my dreams. This turned out to be a serious mistake as I gained a second parellel life. I can barely deal with one life. I would remember things but I couldn't remember if they happened in my "real" life or my dream life since my real life tends to be rather surreal. If you don't remember your dreams, consider yourself lucky. If you decide that you want to start remembering your dreams anyway, there are several ways to do it. The method I used involved writing down everything that I could remember about a dream as soon as I woke up. After doing this for a while, the pen and paper become unnecessary. It is at that point where I found paramnesia setting in.

A fun(?) thing you might be able to do is consious dreaming. To do it you must be in a dream and consiously realize that you are dreaming, but not wake up. If you manage to attain this state, you can influence some level of control over your dreams and ask people questions. I've managed to do this twice. The answers I received were either forgetable or scary nonsense. Consious dreaming is difficult but not impossible if you try long enough.

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Literacy in the Shower

While I was showering the other night, I noticed that my shampoo bottle had a lot of type on the back. What mysteries of life might be revealed on the back a shampoo bottle? None, but a few more mysteries are created. The second sentence of the long paragraph informs that the shampoo "gives you a delicious fragrence experience as you shampoo", It smells like apples. It contains no apples or apple by-products. Apples appearently have no intrinsic cleaning value unlike say lemons.

I bought it because it was on sale and I had a coupon to be doubled, so it cost about 30. I'll buy it the next time it's on sale. I like apples. I just want clean hair, the "delicious fragence experience" is a free bonus!

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Why Life Sucks So Much More When You Leave the House

I figured it out, it's people.

Why do I hate driving? Too many frigging bastards who think they must screw you at any intersection. Too many lazy-ass bastards who double park when there is a parking place just a few feet away. Too many risky bastards who have to constantly switch lanes, only to pass you four times. You would think they would realize that after they have cut in front of me four times, it might make sense to stay in one lane. Why are there so many assholes and why do they all drive?

Why is this planet so #!&%ed up? Yeah, it's people. Could we stop using styrofoam, or drive less? No it would be inconvenient. What rinse out my coffee mug? I'd have to do it every day! What take the train? Live close to my job? God forbid; that would be inconvenient! I guess when we all have to buy in-home oxygen service and wear space suits to go outside, we'll consider changing our habits.

Why are some school systems so much better than others? Why do some children in the US have to grow up in urban war zones? Once again it's people. Those that got don't want to share. I am so sick of rich supposed Christians who bitch about the "government confiscating wealth". These are people with a nice detached house, two newer cars, and yearly vacation get-away, bitch about paying taxes while there are there people only a few miles away who have almost nothing. It is so short sighted I want to scream! If you let these people grew up in urban war zones with a crappy education, odds are they are going to become drains on society as either criminals or wellfare cases. This disinvestment has been going on years and now we can't build the prisions fast enough. Prision Guard, the growth job of the nineties.

Why is such much of this planet a war zone? It's those damn people again! They're always shooting each other or blowing each other up.

The problem is that people suck. This one problem that will never be solved. We are all doomed. Have a nice day.

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Grunt! Grunt! Dig It! Grunt!

Finally after years and years of waiting, Speed Racer is back on TV. Something to live for (you think I'm kidding)! I would tell you what time it is on, but MTV doesn't seem to be able to make up its mind. Racer X is my fave. Every single show that involved Racer X had one of two flashbacks (the long and short versions). Every single show.... "Little does Speed realize that Racer X is really his older brother Rex who...." I'm going to tape every single episode and analyze them.

Initial analysis reveals that Speed grunts approximately twice per minute or about 55 times per episode".

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Boycott Bookbinders

What goes on in the minds of John and Albert Taxin, owners of famous Old Original Bookbinder's Restaurant, in Philadelphia's Old City section? Is it stupidity, arrogance, or just greed? A fairly big stink has arisen in the Philadelphia over the Taxins sudden victory in their quest to demonish a historic building near their restaurant. Old Original Bookbinders Restaurant itself is in a newly constructed building, they knocked the old one down and created an almost exact replicia, so it is neither old or original, but that is not another story.

The story: Three years ago a very old maritine building was offered for sale, bidders were told that the building was historic and economic hardship would not be accepted as a reason for demolision. The Taxins bought it anyway and immediately went about getting a demolision permit to clear the building for a lovely surface parking lot. The city opposed it and it has been tied up in the legal system for three years until this October when the city suddenly and secretively changed its mind and dropped its law suit. The wrecking balls were flying before anyone could do anything about it. No one in City Hall is willing to say anything.

The Long Ago Past: Philadelphia is a four hundred year old city. For most of its history, it has had a martine ecomony. Most of the older maritine buildings were demolished for Interstate 95.

The Recent Past: The Taxins had bought a different old building near the restaurant, claimed that it needed parking for the restaurant and demolished the building. I'm a preservationist but I am also pragmatic person, sometimes you have to comprise, no problem. A little while later, the Taxins sold the parking lot to a developer at a profit who built something on it. Bye bye parking lot.

The Near Future: The Taxins will sell their new parking lot to a developer. John Taxin admitted this in a newspaper interview.

The Present: Old Original Bookbinders makes most of it's money off tourists who come to see Philadelphia's history. Philadelphia's history is more that just 1776 and Washington, Jefferson and Franklin; there's 400 years of it. If tourists just wanted to see what Independence Hall looks like, they can go to Epcot or other places in the USA; there are tons of replicas. If the Taxins want to play real estate mogel, why don't they play in other areas of the city where it's needed. Why did they tear down the Ellis Chandery? Ignorance? No preservationists have been working to save the buidling for three years. Arragance? Maybe; they knew how people and the city felt. Greed? Maybe.

Please do not patronize their restaurant; it's just an overpriced tourist trap anyway.

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Money for Nothing

MCI and AT&T will give you money for nothing. Last December AT&T offered me a $25 check to switch from MCI to AT&T as my default long distance carrier. No matter which long distance company you have chosen as your default carrier, you can use any long distance company you want by pressing in their code before the long distance number (AT&T is 10111; MCI is 10222, Sprint is 10333). Most people either don't know that or can't be bothered, so the big three long distance companies are always trying to get you to switch. Bell of PA charges about $5 to change your default long distance carrier. So I cashed AT&T's check for a $20 net profit and used 10222 or 1033 or 10NJB or 10BPA or long distance calls. A month later, MCI calls me and offers $30 to switch back to MCI. Our total net profit: $45. The real irony is that we only spend about $20 on long distance calls a year.

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Opportunity Missed

The Kathy Lee Gifford Motherhood Special was a VCR keeper. Sadly we didnt' realize it until we accidentally caught saw the last 15 minutes of it. I understand that Howard Stern is also looking for a copy of it. As for fright value, Friday the 13th and the Texas Chainsaw Massacure ain't nothing compared the Kathly Lee Gifford Motherhood Speical. We couldn't take our eyes off it. Conclusions 1) Cody is the spawn of Satan, 2) One understands why Kathy Lee's first husband became gay, 3) It will take me years to expel from my brain, the image of seven Kathy Lees in character singing together via special effects, 4) I am willing to lay odds that at age 16, Cody will kill one or both of his parents violiently and/or at age 25 write a Mommy Dearest book about Kathy Lee.

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Bob Dole Must Rhyme with Asshole For a Reason

This is bonus lost material that didn't fit in the October 1993 print version

What a two-faced useless immoral bastard. He thwarts Clinton's economic expansion program because "it will increase the deficit" and then he turns around and says that taxes should not be increased because "the deficit isn't important". Which is it? What is important? Keeping the country weak for four years to strengthen the Dole '96 campaign? Does he any ideas for decreasing the debt and creating jobs? No. Any ideas for stopping the cycle of poverty and violence destroying our cities? No. What does he care? The rich get richer and build bigger fences.

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