Day at the office: Bathroom Hostages Trapped!

So this happened.. October 2001. Online chat conversation with former colleague

Bleuz00m (3:08:18 PM): hello? something ‘DUH!’ silly to share with ya..
Bud E (3:08:23 PM): ok
Bleuz00m (3:08:49 PM): just now.. a problem arose in the Men’s Room.. seems the interior door handle fell off and got lost.
Bud E (3:09:02 PM): whoops.
Bleuz00m (3:09:12 PM): One by one, guys walked into the Men’s room to take care of bizness.. uh post-lunch dump? 
Bleuz00m (3:09:23 PM): before the other guys could say ‘Hold the door!’
Bud E (3:09:30 PM): oh, you’re joking.
Bleuz00m (3:09:35 PM): NO!
Bud E (3:09:36 PM): like lemmings….
Bleuz00m (3:09:37 PM): for real!
Bleuz00m (3:09:57 PM): finally one of the guys stood at door and just knocked and knocked..
Bud E (3:09:59 PM): so, each and every one was going, “oh, what do we do now?”
Bleuz00m (3:10:02 PM): yep..
Bud E (3:10:07 PM): how many guys were in there?
Bleuz00m (3:10:13 PM): and none of em had a cell phone on him
Bleuz00m (3:10:20 PM): so i understand like ten guys!
Bud E (3:10:28 PM): lol
Bud E (3:10:34 PM): that’s just too funny.  
Bleuz00m (3:10:37 PM): yeah.. this is so stooopid!
Bud E (3:10:47 PM): are you still in the same building?
Bleuz00m (3:11:04 PM): finally, of all people, Nora walks out the suite doors and hears this knocking..
Bleuz00m (3:11:06 PM): yes
Bud E (3:11:31 PM): that bathroom barely holds twenty people.  what was going on in there?
Bleuz00m (3:11:32 PM): and she goes to the Men’s Room door, dumbfounded.. why would somebody be knocking..
Bud E (3:11:37 PM): a party?
Bleuz00m (3:11:43 PM): XD i dunno!
Bud E (3:11:49 PM): was David in there?  🙂 [David was the only ‘out’ gay guy in the company at the time]
Bleuz00m (3:12:00 PM): yeah, no..  just thinking the same thing? LOL David would smack me for that!
Bleuz00m (3:12:25 PM): she asks who’s knocking.. and whoever it was said they were locked in.. no door knob..

Nora, to the rescue!
Bud E (3:12:32 PM): so, anyway, Nora, the hall monitor comes in.
Bleuz00m (3:12:41 PM): she opens the door and all these guys come trooping out..
Bud E (3:12:55 PM): like clowns out of a volkswagen.
Bud E (3:13:23 PM): or actors in “arsenic and old lace”
Bleuz00m (3:13:24 PM): As ya walk past the Men’s room door now, there’s a newspaper folded and stuck in the door with a note that says Put the Paper back in the door.
Bleuz00m (3:13:27 PM): yes…
Bleuz00m (3:13:36 PM): made me think of the 3 Stooges
Bleuz00m (3:13:46 PM): i’m still laughing!
Bleuz00m (3:14:03 PM): Grace was crying laughing
Bud E (3:14:20 PM): did the work get done faster for that brief interval?
Bleuz00m (3:14:48 PM): what do you mean, cause ten guys were held hostage in the bathroom by a broken doorknob?
Bleuz00m (3:14:51 PM): sheesh
Bleuz00m (3:15:13 PM): yeah, the system was quicker for a bit, i noticed. usually this time of day system response is really, really slow.. you remember? the < gotta get it done> compiling crunch before the big proj meetings at 4PM?
Bud E (3:15:31 PM): no, because 10 guys not being there sped up the work process.
Bleuz00m (3:15:37 PM): yep!
Bud E (3:15:40 PM): less managers to get in the way.
Bleuz00m (3:15:45 PM): gad, it’d make a dog laugh
Bud E (3:16:11 PM): depends on the dog, i’d suspect.
Bud E (3:16:38 PM): some dogs have a very dry and sophisticated sense of humor.  irony, not slapstick appeals to them.
Bleuz00m (3:16:40 PM): nobody would ever believe something dumb like this could happen. Dunno which guys got stuck in there.. so far, nobody’s tellin and I’m certain none of em will fess up?
Bud E (3:16:48 PM): these are ‘high brow’ dogs.
Bleuz00m (3:17:10 PM): like a Weimeraner maybe?
Bleuz00m (3:17:15 PM): (sp?)
Bleuz00m (3:19:26 PM): there used to be some cartoon on Saturday mornings featuring a kid with glasses who was supposed to be really smart.. and he had a sidekick dog, looked like an oversize beagle, who usually helped the kid out of jams. in essence, the dog was smarter than the kid.
And that dog had the best laugh, a scratchy, side of the mouth snicker.
Bud E (3:19:36 PM): it’s not based on breed.  there are intelligent dogs all mixed in.  that’s what makes them so hard to please.
Bud E (3:19:57 PM): snidley and whiplash. no. sherman and.. Mr Peabody? yeah. uh rocky n bullwinjle?
Bleuz00m (3:20:16 PM): was that it? i couldn’t remember..
Bud E (3:20:32 PM): that was the name of the cartoon.
Bud E (3:20:41 PM): the dog was snidley. no. Mr Sherman

Bleuz00m (3:20:43 PM): just remembered that i loved that dog.. he was a wizenheimer, that one.
Bud E (3:20:51 PM): with an emphasis on ‘snide’
Bleuz00m (3:20:57 PM): yep!
Bleuz00m (3:21:37 PM): anyhoo. thought you’d get a laugh outta the silly predicament here..
Bud E (3:21:51 PM): yeah.  that’s pretty funny.
Bleuz00m (3:22:46 PM): a conversation that won’t take place over the dinner table tonight:”So Honey, how was your day today?”  “Oh just great! I got locked in the men’s room…”
Bud E (3:23:16 PM): oh, no.  a guy would never let it be known that he was locked in the men’s room.  too embarrassing.
Bleuz00m (3:24:28 PM): unless he wanted to amuse his kids or something? i’m not sure what i’d do. I once locked myself into a swim club locker.. and the lifeguard I had a crush on had to come rescue me.. talk about embarrassing..
Bleuz00m (3:24:46 PM): (i told you about that.. 9th grade..)
Bud E (3:24:57 PM): yikes.
Bleuz00m (3:24:58 PM): anyway.. had to share the silliness with ya.
Bud E (3:25:08 PM): i appreciate it.  thanks.
Bud E (3:25:22 PM): i’m wishing i had something silly to share with you, but i don’t.
Bud E (3:25:45 PM): well.  not really.  but i got to the bottom of the ‘bert is evil’ thing that was online / ap / reuters.
Bleuz00m (3:25:57 PM): yeah.. such a crush on that lifeguard. it was just awful! and I was only in my underwear; the girlfriends with me couldn’t get the locker door opened it was jammed.. i felt like SUCH an idiot!
Bleuz00m (3:26:03 PM): oh yeah.. did you see that whole thing?
Bleuz00m (3:26:37 PM): and somehow, the image of Bert with Bin Laden is on posters all over Kabul and Islamabad..

“Osama has a new friend,”
Bleuz00m (3:27:31 PM): did you read that Michael Jackson’s father had put together an underground force of street guys to go after the terrorists in the US..
Bleuz00m (3:27:40 PM): yesterday, in the paper..
Bud E (3:28:18 PM): yeah.  i think what happened is that some Muslim entrepeaneur (sp) searched the web for pictures of Bin Laden, found one on the ‘bert is evil’ page and printed it with the (yeah, you backlinked it, which gave me a copy thx) rest of the pictures for the protest poster.
Bleuz00m (3:29:10 PM): ah.. so that’s how it happened..
Bleuz00m (3:32:57 PM): wonder if the Sesame Street people will go after the artist/person who created the “Bert is Evil” page, legally. Methinks it could be like that ruling recently against Mattel and in favor of the artist who created photos of Barbie doing surprising and kinky things… i think you sent me some of those Bad Barbie photos? Bratz? um

Bud E (3:33:18 PM): yeah I did. your laser eyes Barbie avatar pissed me off. did you change that?
Bleuz00m (3:34:27 PM):   sorry. yeah, I did. anyhoo.. i should get back to my stuff here.. had to tell ya about the bathroom hostages!  later, then?
Bud E (3:38:19 PM): yeah. me too. laters. thx for the ROFL Tell David I said hello?

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On tarnished heroes, pyramids, and tarred toast

Recall this perfect ‘moment of zen’ clip from 2008. HT Digby

” On September 6, 2008, Senator Barack Obama told AARP members:
John McCain’s campaign has suggested that the best answer for the growing pressures on Social Security might be to cut cost of living adjustments or raise the retirement age. Let me be clear: I will not do either. ‘ ”

Our hero worship crumbles further.

This definition of politics via Osho dot com …

Politics illustration from Osho dot com

Politics illustration from Osho dot com; src:

…comes to mind. Its text:

Anybody who can be a good pretender, a hypocrite, will become your leader politically,
will become your priest religiously. All that he needs is hypocrisy, all that he needs is
cunningness, all that he needs is a facade to hide behind. Your politicians live double lives, your priests live double lives–one from the front door, the other from the back door. And the back-door life is their real life. Those front-door smiles are just false, those faces looking so innocent are just cultivated. If you want to see the reality of the politician you will have to see him from his back door. There he is in his nudity, as he is, and so is the priest. These two kinds of cunning people have dominated humanity. And they found out very early on that if you want to dominate humanity, make it weak, make it feel guilty, make it feel unworthy. Destroy its dignity, take all glory away from it, humiliate it. And they have found such subtle ways of humiliation that they don’t come in the picture at all; they leave it to you to humiliate yourself, to destroy yourself. They have taught you a kind of slow suicide
Text that accompanies the above image. (c) 2013 Osho dot com :

Yes, this Osho dot com page definition of Politics sounds hopeless. I’m bitter, seeing our
political heroes lose their veneers. The shining believability proffered by too many
politicians mutates into neglect of those who put them in office, especially when the
allure of lobbyists’ $$ turns their allegiance.

Pols seduce us with “I’m your friend” then turn their backs; trust between friends is earned and reciprocated. Reminds me of Janet Jackson’s “What You Done For Me Lately.”

Do re-read this prescient NYT OpEd from 2005, “A Party Inverted,” by former New Jersey US Senator Bill Bradley.
Bradley examines how the Lewis Powell Memorandum has been played out; the current Citizens-United SCOTUS-ruling-fueled logjam in Congress is proof of this. Bradley’s allusion to political ‘pyramid schemes,’ implemented with vastly differently results, is key:

To further the party’s ideological and political goals, Republicans in the 1970’s and 1980’s built a comprehensive structure based on Powell’s blueprint. Visualize that structure as a pyramid.

You’ve probably heard some of this before, but let me run through it again. Big individual donors and large foundations n- the Scaife family and Olin foundations, for instance – form the base of the pyramid. They fiance conservative research centers like the Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institute and the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, entities that make up the second level of the pyramid…

The ideas these organizations develop are then pushed up to the third level of the pyramid – the political level. There, strategists like Karl Rove or Ralph Reed or Ken Mehlman take these new ideas and, through polling, focus groups and careful attention to Democratic attacks, convert them into language that will appeal to the broadest electorate. That language is sometimes in the form of an assault on Democrats and at other times in the form of advocacy for a new policy position. The development process can take years. And then there’s the fourth level of the pyramid: the partisan news media. Conservative commentators and networks spread these finely honed ideas.

At the very top of the pyramid you’ll find the president. Because the pyramid is stable, all you have to do is put a different top on it and it works fine. ”

Bradley continues,
…To understand how the Democratic Party works, invert the pyramid. Imagine a pyramid balancing precariously on its point, which is the presidential candidate. Democrats who run for president have to build their own pyramids all by themselves. There is no coherent, larger structure that they can rely on. Unlike Republicans, they don’t simply have to assemble a campaign apparatus – they have to formulate ideas and a vision, too. Many Democratic fundraisers join a campaign only after assessing how well it has done in assembling its pyramid of political, media and idea people.

…There is no clearly identifiable funding base for Democratic policy organizations, and in the frantic campaign rush there is no time for patient, long-term development of new ideas or of new ways to sell old ideas. Campaigns don’t start thinking about a Democratic brand until halfway through the election year, by which time winning the daily news cycle takes precedence over building a consistent message. The closest that Democrats get to a brand is a catchy slogan.

…Democrats choose this approach, I believe, because we are still hypnotized by Jack Kennedy, and the promise of a charismatic leader who can change America by the strength and style of his personality. The trouble is that every four years the party splits and rallies around several different individuals at once.”

Further, what we’re seeing now, Bradley nails it, again:
In such a system tactics trump strategy. Candidates don’t risk talking about big ideas because the ideas have never been sufficiently tested. Instead they usually wind up arguing about minor issues and express few deep convictions. In the worst case, they embrace “Republican lite” platforms – never realizing that in doing so they’re allowing the Republicans to define the terms of the debate.

From an old email I’d sent to friends in 2005:

“Yes, I know. That [former Senator Bill Bradley] OP-ED piece was published back in March, but I re-read it again. Bradley nails it. Unlike reading Nostradamus and chuckling over his obscure predictions, the NeoCon blueprint of former Justice Powell which Bradley describes is being followed to. the. letter. Today’s judicial confirmation of Pryor and of Brown — [ref: review of US Circuit and District Court appointments by George W Bush during 107th – 109th Congresses, updated January 2007 ] earlier in the week aren’t just foreboding, it’s all part of their plan.

What do we do now? Could the grass-roots push behind Ed Prado [ ] ever hope to succeed? But we can’t afford to be hopeless, and we can’t all just move to PM Angela Merkel’s place.

All the petitions, phone calls, plaintive letters AND MONEY we’ve sent to those who we’ve believed would champion our more-Centrist-than-purely-Leftist leanings cannot overcome this NeoCon juggernaut. And Governor Dean’s entreaties are falling on deaf ears, having become just more fodder for Bill O’Reilly’s jibes and little else. Very big money has been fueling this GOP NeoCon onslaught for the past 42+ years. Its mantle of Evangelical religion and protectionism is just window-dressing; it has been a marketing ploy to garner hapless, blind foot soldiers all along.

Tar sands or your morning toast? You decide.


. The US revenue stream will be severely impacted by loss of farming if the Keystone XL
pipeline succeeds. Funny how none of its oiligarchy-greased pols care about that.

. LOOK at how the US economy is threatened by this, and all the jobs LOST as a result. Stats via the USDA /US Department of Agriculture. Mind you, these figures are from 2007.

The above image is forked from the National Wildlife Federation’s ‘Tar Sands or Farm Lands: Keystone XL pipeline’s threat to America’s Bread Basket,’ :

. However, our children’s future — and the future of the planet — depends on what we collectively do now. Who do we get behind now? ”


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Texting by candlelight. And Hurricane Sandy is a Democrat?

Near Philadelphia, PA 10/31/12 4:00AM Eastern:  Thirty-two hours and 20 minutes later, I can now reconnect to the web and the world. That’s how long the Hurricane-Sandy-whacked power outage lasted for me.

At the moment, I’m disentangling myself from my oh-so-chicly-tied scarf to which two penlight flashlights were affixed, positioned below my left ear: the better to read in bed when there is a power outage. * (Pic to be posted. See below.)  Why two? When one light began to fade, I switched to the other one. And yes, my best dinner party antique cut-glass, two-taper candelabra and a pale pink pressed-glass candle-holder with handle both came in handy.

Tonight, after being holed-up and storm-bound for two days before the power was restored to my little Philadelphia suburbs burg, I finally got out and drove around from my place to Radnor,  then east on Lancaster Ave (along the ‘Main Line,’ as it is known locally.) The roads were mostly cleared. Off Lancaster Avenue and then back north around Norristown, there were still some ‘Road Closed’ police signs due to downed trees and power lines which had not yet been removed.

During the storm, eerie, soundless, repeated bursts of brilliant blue sparks arced across the storm-swept night sky as power lines fell. They looked like mis-aimed fireworks just over the treetops. Lots of downed trees and branches debris in the area. The winds were unrelenting and wild here: constant 25-30 mph, with gusts to 80 mph that whipped trees and flung un-stowed garden furniture, dislodging protective plywood and trash cans.

A neighbor’s 18-foot Fiberglas boat was speared by a fallen tree branch and further damaged by spilled diesel. Yes, I reported it, The local HazMat has been on the scene. Another neighbor’s miniature bulldog got loose, and I helped recapture it. The dog’s blankie proved to be an irresistible magnet, and that twelve-year-old owner finally stopped crying. Once rescued, the still-freaked out dog holed up in the bathroom, whining, so the 12-year-old slept on the bathroom floor. Now that’s love!

Curiously, several neighbors’ Romney/Ryan lawn signs disappeared during the storm. But the Obama/Biden signs remained solidly planted. So Hurricane Sandy is a Democrat?
cutline: GOP Deny-o-saurs of deceit, deficit & doom days are
numbered: 7 & counting.We #p2 BLUE rise and roll on to NOV.

Last year, Hurricane Irene flooded nearby baseball fields: the receding waters stole third base and the pitcher’s mound marker, gouged playgrounds, and tossed 50-seat metal bleachers like frisbees.

cutline: King of Prussia, PA 8/28/11: Walker Park, adjacent to Crow Creek. Baseball field’s 3rd base and pitcher’s mound stolen by Hurricane Irene’s flooding.

This year, these Walker Field ball fields were unscathed.

I lent three flashlights to clueless neighbors here in my apartment building. What, they didn’t see/hear the news and all the “Frankenstorm” warnings? A fellow news site chatter teased me via phone text message, “Bleuz! The neighborhood flasher..’

As of this writing (4:00AM Eastern) some 290,000 Bucks County and Montgomery County residents are still without power.

Tonight, in my jaunt, I saw several three-truck convoys from a big, local tree-maintenance firm, Asplundh, making the rounds. And mind you, this was at about 11PM.

The King of Prussia Mall (the largest in the US ref:  was fully lit and looked completely unscathed, as did almost all of the nearby fast food joints and most of the gas stations. Presumably, these spots had generators as they had power long before the surrounding residential areas did.

Some pockets of retail and residential were still dark in my jaunt from Upper Merion to Norristown to Ardmore, as of this writing.

Amid several of the still-outage-affected residential areas I drove through, a few homes’ generators were thrumming, their exterior lights gleaming out over slick driveways, interior lights spilling their glow to glint off the storm-swept fallen leaves on soggy lawns.

I treated myself to dinner at a 24-hour diner in Strafford. And they let me power-up my phone there. Huzzah!

Before I left for tonight’s look-see, I hauled out bags and bags of spoiled food from my fridge/freezer. Hey, a 32 + -hour power hit is one fast – but expensive – way to empty out a fridge. The neighborhood racoons and feral cats will know what may yet be safe to eat; I didn’t want to take a chance.

Mammal Image Gallery

cutline: /

Credit: Johannes Kroemer/Getty Images


I have some 318 emails to catch up on. (that’s just one account; I haven’t checked the other two yet) Likely one quarter of the emails are last-minute political fundraising and phone banking GOTV appeals.

Now then, where were we? Ah yes.. GOTV. Stay calm and carry on.

-Bleuz00m  ( with two zeroes)

*About that two-penlight-scarf fashion statement, this necessity / accessory is something I devised when I was a child. I read read voraciously at night, when I was supposed to be fast asleep. And no, I never did resolve that telltale light blob under the covers, if one of my parents happened to take a peek in to make sure I was asleep. Yes, I will update this page with a picture of “chic-light,” because some readers asked to see it.
Twitter/YouTube : BleuZ00m
“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”- John Lennon
“Through the process of amendment, interpretation and court decision I have finally been included in
‘We, the people.'” -Barbara C. Jordan

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Appeal to Better Angels or Elvis for US Economic Recovery

I just read  the Los Angeles Times’  report by Tina Susman about that West New York tree’s sudden “Virgin Mary” appearance  (1, below.) It recalls a similar sighting in Scranton, PA in 2010.  A friend of mine, Roxanne Pauline, documented this “Image of Jesus in Sauce Bucket” sighting in a pizza shop on the first day of Lent  (2, below.) Here are a Scranton, PA  news report and supportive editorial column about it (3,4 below.)

Scranton, PA is just one of many US cities facing bankruptcy (5, below.)  Too many US cities are facing fiscal fiasco;  San Bernadino, Stockton and Mammoth Lakes in CA are not alone (6, below.) Despite a slowly-growing jobs outlook, the as-yet unabated homes foreclosure rate continues to dent local and state tax revenues.  Meanwhile, the  ‘job-creators’ and Willard Mitt Romney, the presumed Republican presidential candidate, continue to shield their assets by exiting off-shore, hiding from the revenuers. This only further stymies the US economic recovery uptick  And this just in! Certain off-shore countries’ consulates have flung open their doors to help the 1% escape to tax-free havens. (7, below.) Hello, Secretary Clinton?

For Scranton, PA,  its fiscal recovery fate may rest on hopes of a higher-power intervention from the return visit by a religious icon or an Elvis sighting, because of the tourist revenue it would generate. Barring that, Governor Corbett could change his draconian budget-cutting ways.  The chance of either? I’m betting on the return of pizza sauce bucket Jesus.

Here in a  pencil drawing created by  one of  GOP hopeful Willard Mitt Romney’s distant cousins, George Romney, depicts an epic battle in ‘heaven’ (8, below.)  Entitled, “The Fall of the Rebel Angels,” ,  the lead angel’s ‘magic underwear’ appears to be missing, if tastefully so.  But this artist’s distant cousin, presidential hopeful Willard Mitt Romney, has more than angels to worry about now.  Even Mitt’s oh-so-modest, ‘magic underwear’ may not save him.  We can only hope that the SEC will charge Romney with Bain Capital filings fraud sooner than some holy or dead celebrity icons show up.


1.,0,6151283.story “Devout see Virgin Mary in N.J. tree trunk”

2.  By Roxanne Pauline, “Image of Jesus in Sauce Bucket,” video


4.  Thank you, Chris, for this!

5.  Scranton’s fiscal woes, as reported in the Guardian UK on 7/14/12.

6. ) 

7.  (excerpted below)

“The U.S. is closing the doors on this sinking ship and you can really see how little time there is left when the really big rats start abandoning ship… If you live in the U.S. or any Western country and aren’t already making alternative arrangements then there isn’t much more we can say or do to open your eyes to the reality that we perceive.

In this month’s issue of TDV, the Director of TDV Passports, Ken Johnson, outlines a number of residency and citizenship opportunities in a South American country for our subscribers.  Not only have we negotiated, directly with the most high level political officials an expedited citizenship for our subscribers, but we have also come up with the first ever financed citizenship program where TDV itself will finance your immediate residency and help get you on track to a foreign citizenship in a country with no income tax and who doesn’t consider its citizens as milk and beef cows in less than four years.”

8. Illustration: “The Fall of the Rebel Angels, ” by George Romney (1734-1802)  artist, pencil drawing,  borrowed from images posted to, courtesy of Sotheby’s London from «L03120»*, The British Sale,  London,  Wednesday, March 19, 2003

full link:–romney-george-1734-1802-united-the-fall-of-the-rebel-angels-1930819.htm

short link:


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