Inhuman Swill : Page 170
Why is my blog called Inhuman Swill? Because you can unscramble the pieces to make William Shunn.

[ THE STORY SO FAR:  In Part One, five intrepid adventurers entered the building that houses the new LDS temple in Manhattan to take one in a month-long series of public tours of the renovation. After a brief look at the portion of the building where regular Sunday services take place and the viewing of a slickly produced video presentation, the group prepared to brave the secrets of the temple proper. . . . ]

All ye who enter

Brother Creigh halted our unwieldy group near the third-floor elevators. "It looks like there are too many of us to ride down in one load," he said. "We'll fit as many on as we can, but if any of you are athletes you can feel free to take the stairs and meet us on the first floor."

Only in a Mormon temple is an athlete defined as someone who can successfully walk down two flights of stairs. Yes, Brother Creigh was cracking a little wise, but since the average age for temple workers and patrons is on the elderly side of senior citizen, the implication of his joke was more true than he had probably intended.

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The religious policeman

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The Religious Policeman is a fascinating blog from Saudi Arabia that [info]bobhowe turned me on to. Here's a sampling from Friday's posting:

Here's a little test, to see if you've been paying attention to all of this blog so far. Match the act, and what should happen next.
1. You take part in a political meeting in a hotel. 2. You are an adult male and you have sex with a 13-year-old girl.

a) Someone writes a flattering newspaper article about you.
b) You go to prison

If you answered 1b and 2a, well done, you have the mind of a "Muttawa", reward yourself with a shawarma, a smoke, and a snooze.

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LDS Manhattan New York Temple
Tuesday evening I entered a Latter-day Saint temple for the first time in over a decade.

Don't have a stroke—it wasn't a religious relapse. The LDS Church has taken its blocky, six-story meetinghouse near Lincoln Center in Manhattan and hewn from its rocky heart a new temple. (I've touched on the subject of this construction project in earlier writings.) This edifice is open to the public, more or less, through June 5, after which it will be closed to heathen, given a final hard spit and polish, and dedicated to Elohim, as God is known to His friends. My wife Laura and I, along with three intrepid friends, were fortunate enough to attach ourselves to a tour this week.

Having returned, I shall soon report. (If you happen ever to have experienced a Mormon temple endowment ceremony and possess an evolved sense of irreverence, you are busting a gut at that line. Otherwise you're either scratching your head or reaching for a firearm.) But first, a brief word about temples.

A temple-building people

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Celebrity sighting

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Donald Fagen, emerging from an apartment building on East 32nd Street. There was a moment there when I forgot to walk. I wanted to say hello, but had no idea what to say.

This was on a walk from my office to the Kips Bay Petco. Why I keep going there, I don't know. It only took their poor selection of dog toys and the utter absence of cashiers at the check-out lanes to quash the good feelings from my Donald sighting.

But bless this weather. The walk back was "Hey Nineteen" all the way.

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Bilmo is a Grass-Eating Zombie Monkey

...with a Battle Rating of 2.0

To see if your Food-Eating Battle Monkey can defeat Bilmo, enter your name:
Courtesy o' [info]bobhowe the Fire-Eating Samurai Monkey.

UPDATE: Bad news for Homo sapiens

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Binary elimination

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In reference to queries about what the dog may or may not have done in the backyard, we've come up with a shorthand designation: "Number Three." This, of course, encodes success for both "Number One" and "Number Two," which are themselves informational bits.

A completely unproductive session is "Number Zero."

Ella, by the way, is suffering from irration of the right ear, and possibly an infection. Every morning and evening for seven days, we must clean both her ears and then put drops in the right one. This is not a fun activity for us or her.

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What the "h"?

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I haven't been keeping exact count, but the word "Fahrenheit" seems to have been misspelled in at least half of the professional media references I've seen to the new Michael Moore film, Fahrenheit 9/11. Everyone seems to want to drop that first h.* The latest culprit is A.M. New York, page 12, column 2.

UPDATE: A pair of interesting reports on Fahrenheit 9/11 by Roger Ebert, from Cannes:

* I also wish the first h had never been dropped from "George H. W. Bush."
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The two (or three) C's

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While I am capable of carrying on a cellphone conversation in public with only minimal cringing, I do not have the chutzpah sufficient to permit me to initiate a speaker-cellphone call in a coffee bar. However, I apparently also lack sufficient cojones to keep one from happening at my table and being compelled to join it. Such are the perils of modern man.

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Just do her! haplessly

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I added Google ads to my web site in January. Over the weekend my earnings from running the ads tipped over $100, so I should be getting a check by early July. Woo-hoo! I'm rich! Gimme some more of that Internet cash!

Early on, I spent a lot of time trying to customize my ad settings so that pro-LDS products would not be advertised on my site. After a couple of months, though, realizing that I was fighting a losing battle, I gave up and quit trying to block ads from certain domains. I decided it was more subversive to let pay me a few dimes for running their ads than to try to keep them off my site. I'm laughing all the way to the Penny Lane change-counting machine at the Commerce Bank around the corner.

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William Shunn