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Ron Obvious

Profile Information

Name: Ron
Gender: Male
Home country: Middle Earth
Current location: Seattle
Member since: Tue Dec 13, 2011, 10:37 PM
Number of posts: 6,065

About Me

I got the nickname Ron Obvious because -- in addition to being a huge Python fan -- my name really is Ron and I used to start sentences with \"Obviously\" a lot. Obviously, that\'s no longer a problem.

Journal Archives

Death of an uncle

My uncle Henry died a few weeks ago. Oh, it's ok. He was well into his nineties and he passed peacefully in his own bed surrounded by his loved ones. We should all be so lucky.

We all thought him a bit of a bore when I was growing up. A small, slightly pompous man much prone to bluster and hyperbole, he was the only one of his brothers to be in a protected profession during the war and escape conscription. He was a chemist at I.G. Farben, and as fussy and punctilious as that profession makes him sound. I remember how we used to mock and laugh at him when we were kids. My own imitations of his bluster might well have been the best and drawn the most laughs.

His one uncharacteristic act was to fall head over heels in love with a young Yugoslavian assistant assigned to him during the war. By all accounts, his love was fully reciprocated by her, but the relationship nevertheless fell afoul of the people in charge and they were split up.

Sundered by the chaos of war and its aftermath and later by the iron curtain, he spent years trying to find her but never did. He married and raised a family, and was a good, kind and loving father. Nobody ever talked about his war time love that got away. We all just knew.

I wasn't there, but apparently when he died he spent his last breaths sobbing her name.

Poor, boring, blustering uncle Henry. I suppose we never really knew you.

Oh frabjous day, the Christian rock band has moved away...

A few months ago, some nice old people in our neighbourhood temporarily moved out to travel abroad. In their absence, they would have one of their young nephews and his friends stay in their house in order to keep an eye on it. They were such nice young men who had nowhere else to go, the aunt assured us, and they were trying to start a band. We were to make sure they weren't too noisy and to let them know right away if they were.

That didn't sound promising.

We saw the fine young fellows arrive on a Friday, and literally that same evening the terror began. Awful industrial noises emanated from their garage at decibel levels high enough to kill small rodents. Accompanying the noises were a variety of uncouth ululations, suggestive of a large animal in dreadful agony. Upon closer inspection, it turned out be, using a broad definition of the term, music. The kind of music, as Dave Barry put it, to slaughter cattle by. The band were practising their dark arts.

Bloody Hell!

I wasn't the first to call the cops on them, nor was I the first to confront them in person. I don't know about you, but I'm usually shy and non-confrontational as a rule.

You've probably known small men who, through their iron will and great spirit, bend people to their will and make them behave. Well, I'm not like that. I have the spirit of a dried-up, tame accountant in the body of a lion tamer. It costs me a great deal to wake the dragon.

However, if there's one thing that can do it, it is inconsiderate, loud behaviour. So one night when the noises were particularly awful, I too, went over there to bang on their door and hurl invective at them.

They actually opened the door to me for a change. I ranted for a few obscenity-laced minutes, but I could tell my heart wasn't in it.

They appeared contrite and even somewhat intimidated.

"But sir," their spokescretin objected, "we are a Christian rock band."

Ooooh, that did it. That automatic, unspoken assumption that being a Christian gave one license to behave like an obnoxious prick.

I tapped hitherto unsuspected reserves of anger and obscenity and told them what I thought of that. I don't remember now what I said exactly, but I think I mentioned that I would have preferred them to be black mass-celebrating Satanists, provided they sacrificed babies quietly.

Boy, did they look terrified then. I thought they were going to be calling the cops on me for a change, but they actually shut down their music and the rest of the evening was peaceful.

It didn't stay quiet for too many days, of course. I wasn't naive enough to think that it would be. Still, it was a small victory and it was much appreciated by the other neighbours. I felt a happy glow of satisfaction that lasted some hours that night.

Well, they've finally moved out the other day and I couldn't be happier.

I'll close with Billy Connolly's views on Christian Rock & Roll which I heartily endorse.

Do you listen to more or less music now than you did 15 years ago?

It occurred to me the other day that we have access to an incredible amount of music in these days of broadband internet and other technological advances, and it's right at our fingertips in a way it's never been before.

I've got our entire CD collection ripped to the hard drive of a server that's accessible throughout the house (or for that matter, the world), so I don't even have to go through the bother of putting a CD in a player. If there's music I would want to listen to but don't yet have, I can probably acquire it within seconds without leaving the house.

And yet I don't listen to music all that often these days. Far less than, say, 15 years ago when I played CDs or 30, 40 years ago when I depended on my records and tapes.

I thought that was rather curious, and it even made me a little sad. I was always so excited to buy and listen to a new LP or CD in the past, and I wonder if I've grown blasť about music because it's so easy to acquire now. Possibly it's because the internet has given us so many competing ways to spend our time and money, or possibly it's because I don't get exposed to a lot of new (to me) music these days since I already have this vast collection.

I wondered if this was a larger trend in society or if it's more likely personal to me. I'd be curious to hear your thoughts.

A FOX Soccer Channel fantasy...

Eric Wynalda: "And with us in the studio today is former Newcastle and England player Warren Barton. What did you think of Barcelona's performance in the first half today, Warren?"

Warren Barton: "I thought them was excellent today, Eric"

EW: "No, you didn't."

WB: "Eh?"

EW: "You thought THEY. WERE. excellent, you stupid motherfucker!"

WB: "I've no idea what you mean. I'm a footballing legend, whereas you stupidly got red carded against the Czechs in your only World Cup appearance in 1990. Who are you to correct me like this?"

EW: "I'm the voice of sanity, arsehole. Say it: THEY. WERE. Say it!" *PUNCH!* "POW!* *SMACK!* *CHOKE!"

WB: "Aaargh! Help, help, help me!"

EW: Say it, motherfucker! "THEY." WERE."

WB: "OK, OK, OK. THEY. WERE. excellent today. Happy now?"

EW: OK, but don't forget. If you make that mistake again, I'm going to cut your balls off."

WB (Wiping blood off his forehead, looking terrified): "Alright, alright, alright! I'll never make that mistake again, I swear!"

EW: "See that you don't. OK. Former Newcastle and England defender Warren Barton thinks Barcelona were excellent today. Back over to you in the studio, Rob".

I just had my front teeth capped

Boy, do I feel violated. It feels nothing like having my other teeth capped. I suspect I'll get used to it in time, though. Still, I look quite the handsome devil here, don't I?

Name your favourite soccer player who looks like Vladimir Putin!

I'll start:

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