By CHRIS PACKHAM
• The Snowpocalypse is coming! Also, it has been downgraded from Snowpocalypse to Snownoyance. Yesterday, I heard 4 to 8 inches. Now they're saying 1 to 4 inches. At this rate, it's going to take 85.5 years to submerge the Statue of Liberty. Please note that I am a red-blooded patriotic veteran and that I don't want the Statue of Liberty submerged in snow, beheaded, worshiped by future apes or closed for cleaning and maintenance.
• Phill Kline scoffs and struts around your uterus in a proprietary manner with his chest puffed out: A Johnson County grand jury has subpoenaed the medical records of 16 women who had abortions in 2003 at Planned Parenthood in Overland Park. The subpoena seeks identifying information already denied to District Attorney Phill Kline's office by the the googly-eyed Contra 4 boss monster of high courts, the Supreme Court. Checkmate, ladies.
Meanwhile, Kline's fight against abortion made the Los Angeles Times this morning.
• There's a forgettable Keanu Reeves film called Johnny Mnemonic, in which Henry Rollins portrays a black-market doctor who drives around in a van powered by natural gas, which fills a huge airtight bag on the van's roof. Despite the fact that Henry Rollins could wrap his arm around my skull and then crush it by flexing his biceps, I have to say that he's a pretty bad actor. And you know what? He was still better than Keanu Reeves. He also acted circles around Ice-T, obvs.
Anyway. There's a bill moving through the Kansas statehouse that would increase emission standards for two new coal-fired power plants in southwest Kansas. It also calls for the state's fleet vehicles to be powered by natural gas. JUST LIKE HENRY ROLLINS' FUTURE-VAN! And to put the nanomechanical icing on the gene-spliced future-cake, I totally learned about this initiative in CYBERSPACE, as seen in Johnny Mnemonic:
• Just wanted to point out that there's another embattled mayor facing a recall election. Arlington, Oregon, Mayor Carmen Kontur-Gronquist — whose last name sounds like the title of a series of barbarian novels with cover illustrations painted by Boris Vallejo — has been targeted by outraged constituents over pictures on her MySpace page that depict the Mayor in a variety of sexxxy poses. Click here for the sexxxy! My cursory Google image search only yielded the blurry Mayoral picture available at the link, so we've provided a Boris Vallejo painting at right.
• The Humane Society of the United States released footage taken by an undercover investigator at a California plant revealing cows too sick or lame to walk even when electrically prodded and a variety of abuses in violation of state and federal laws. The horrifying punchline is that the plant apparently provides meat to U.S. schools. Also: SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!!! Also: TO SERVE MAN IS A COOKBOOK!!!
There's a graphic video at the link. Be warned, because as I recall from the trailer for the overwrought Nicholas Cage film 8MM, "There are some things you can't unsee." But you have to scroll down to the bottom of the page, and the cow video won't start playing without your permission.
Back when I worked on the killing floor at a plant in central Iowa, the old-timers used to make fun of the guy who used the pneumatic cattle gun because in the '70s, they'd just let the cows die of malignant catarrhal fever and then slaughter them. And that was where meat came from. And I think I heard that they rendered those very cows into the chicken fried steak fed to orphans. So I have to ask: When did our immune systems lose their sacks? It's like we're all a bunch of wilting flowers whose leukocytes can't handle a few prions.
• Yesterday, I suggested that Conklin Fangman of Conklin Fangman Motors had the coolest name in Kansas City. In comments, someone called Heatherkay pointed out that The Pitch already declared Kansas City architect and transit activist E. Crichton "Kite" Singleton as having the coolest name. But now maybe we need to construct a list of cool Kansas City names. Please submit your nomination in comments, or send me an email.