Monthly Archives: October 2011

It Always Ends With a Whimper….Final Mind of Mully Biz Haus Shoppe



Best Experienced With:                 Radiohead;         Fake Plastic Trees

(Please right click on the link below to open the suggested background music to this evening’s gathering in a new browser window.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUJP0BwWB5Q

There are three things I generally buy extra of when at the store:   light bulbs, paper towels, and toilet paper.    You can really never have enough toilet paper, light bulbs, or paper towels in your home.   You can buy extra of these because you are never going to give up any of those three.   For example, you might buy a whole side of beef and then become a Vegan a week later.   You may choose to reduce your sugar intake on a Sunday morning when you look in the mirror and you’re not quite as sassy as you were the previous weekend.   None of us will ever reduce our use of paper towels, light bulbs and toilet paper and all of us will smack ourselves in the forehead down the road, at ten o’clock on a Wednesday night, when a bulb blows and there are no bulbs in the house.    Plenty of sugar things, half of a side of beef.  No light bulbs.

In a folder in a desk drawer….down below….to the left of where I type is a folder filled with non sequiturs;  begun and never finished blurbs because they were either too ridiculously bad to see the light of day or because the twenty minute “Cohen Rule” had passed and I could not finish them.   One was based on Kurt Vonnegut’s quote “we are healthy only to the extent that our ideas are humane” and that one would have been pretty entertaining, but I fell asleep on the flight back from Boston and never finished it.   It involved flying monkeys, fire breathing unicorns and castles made of sand….which normally do not accompany a Kurt Vonnegut quotation.  The fire breathing unicorns would have made it special.

Another began “we Irish were marketed as drunken potato eaters, come to steal the jobs of folks who had immigrated six or seven years before us…which is why we were immediately shipped southward on trains to win the War of Northern Agression.    Which we did.   Because we Irish are the toughest beings on this planet.”   That one then digressed into the closing of the Godrej & Boyce typewriter factory in Mubai, India and how challenging it must be to sell and market typewriters these days.  Not as challenging as selling and marketing Mexico as a tourist destination while bodies stack up like cords of wood throughout the border towns.    A third began “it is quite possible that when all of us over the age of thirty pass on, entire daily newspapers like the Boston Globe and NY Times will be two pages long.    Thankfully, I will be dead.”   That one would have finished with my worry for the youth of today….their lack of a sense of style, truncated sentences, emoticons instead of adverbs and adjectives, and complete lack of interest in Harvard Business Review case studies.    Both of these would, of course, included wombats, some sort of punk music and a mythical beast such as a Griffin or a Chimera.

There are several hundred of these.   Lying there in a file folder, never to be finished.    Like first dates that you never follow through on with gusto and vigor.

Given a long enough event horizon, all things are taken out to the woodshed in the back and shot in the head. More important, most things should be taken out to the woodshed and shot in the head.  Happy Days learned this with the “jump the shark” episode, the 2011 incarnation of Guns & Roses with a really, really fat Axl Rose as pictured above in the yellow smock will learn this, and Sarah Palin is ridiculous proof positive that most things have a natural lifespan.  One day, they should disappear like Jackie Paper and flat out never be seen, nor heard, any longer.   Was going to simply take the six months off to heal up the fused wrists and crank it back up here on Singles Awareness Day in February, 2012; however, this second incarnation of Mind of Mully has run its course and will be no more in seventy-two hours.

The wrist?    Thanks for asking!    Looks cool inside….here’s the new, Steve Austin, inside of the wrist.   Have been practicing my Wolverine skills and have a pretty good handle on how angry I have to get before the blades come out.    As the Foo Fighters opined in “Monkey Wrench”……”temper, temper…..”   Here’s how they’ll both look soon.

Tested the rebuilt wrist on the guitar for the first time last weekend and played the song you may, or may not have, cued up above there when you joined:  Radiohead’s “Fake Plastic Trees”.   I play this song every day…once in the morning and once in the evening…because it is a ridiculously perfect and wonderful song.  It is the Riemann hypothesis of songs, built of prime numbers and never quite provable.  Began learning guitar to learn three things:   the entire Social Distortion song catalogue, “Everything About You” by Steve Poltz, and “Fake Plastic Trees”.     This song took five looooooong months and seventeen quarts of blood, bled slowly through my left hand fingers to learn…and it remains perhaps the finest and most perfect song in the universe.     You have all had your own personal reasons for visiting this site.   I wrote here to learn to play guitar.   It was my head fake to distract myself from something I remain relatively awful at and it worked.   Would choose a “best experienced with” song to learn (a song most certainly bereft of F chords and B chords), pull up the tab on one computer, type the MofM thing here on another computer during the breaks (or when the cats would howl at what was certainly a murder happening in the office) and slowly but surely learn, or not learn, the song.     Faulkner just rolled over in his grave when I typed this paragraph.   Again.

As some have noticed (and as other have emailed), have gradually privatized all five hundred thirty four entries in Mind of Mully (Classic) and Mind of Mully (Biz Haus Shoppe) over the past two weeks.  Have shipped the original versions, scribbled in purple Sharpie marker on the backs of random brown shopping bags and stolen sheets of loose notebook paper, to the Smithsonian for your children and grandchildren to read one day.    The dashboard shows the shutting down…..was a fun time with you all.    74,500 reads here and 53,200 reads over at Mind of Mully (Classic).  That’s a lot of silliness and good music.

This last one is the last remaining public treatise and tonight, it is dedicated to my father.    If my father raised all six billion of us on this planet, there would be far less strife and far more laughter.   The single most important thing Dan Mulligan Senior taught me was an abiding love and respect for women through how he treated my mother and sisters.   The second most important thing Dan Mulligan Senior taught me was how to laugh…loudly, with purpose, and as often as possible.

For better or worse, there is only one natural conclusion to most stories, given a long enough event horizon.  This conclusion is “we all fall down”.   This conclusion is neither positive, nor negative, it simply is.

No one does “we all fall down” better than T.S Eliot.   God speed, thanks for reading for the past five years, and good bye.

A penny for the Old Guy

I

We are the hollow men

We are the stuffed men

Leaning together

Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!

Our dried voices, when

We whisper together

Are quiet and meaningless

As wind in dry grass

Or rats’ feet over broken glass

In our dry cellar

Shape without form, shade without colour,

Paralysed force, gesture without motion;

Those who have crossed

With direct eyes, to death’s other Kingdom

Remember us – if at all – not as lost

Violent souls, but only

As the hollow men

The stuffed men.

II

Eyes I dare not meet in dreams

In death’s dream kingdom

These do not appear:

There, the eyes are

Sunlight on a broken column

There, is a tree swinging

And voices are

In the wind’s singing

More distant and more solemn

Than a fading star.

Let me be no nearer

In death’s dream kingdom

Let me also wear

Such deliberate disguises

Rat’s coat, crowskin, crossed staves

In a field

Behaving as the wind behaves

No nearer –

Not that final meeting

In the twilight kingdom

III

This is the dead land

This is cactus land

Here the stone images

Are raised, here they receive

The supplication of a dead man’s hand

Under the twinkle of a fading star.

Is it like this

In death’s other kingdom

Waking alone

At the hour when we are

Trembling with tenderness

Lips that would kiss

Form prayers to broken stone.

IV

The eyes are not here

There are no eyes here

In this valley of dying stars

In this hollow valley

This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms

In this last of meeting places

We grope together

And avoid speech

Gathered on this beach of the tumid river

Sightless, unless

The eyes reappear

As the perpetual star

Multifoliate rose

Of death’s twilight kingdom

The hope only

Of empty men.

V

Here we go round the prickly pear

Prickly pear prickly pear

Here we go round the prickly pear

At five o’clock in the morning.

Between the idea

And the reality

Between the motion

And the act

Falls the Shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom

Between the conception

And the creation

Between the emotion

And the response

Falls the Shadow

Life is very long

Between the desire

And the spasm

Between the potency

And the existence

Between the essence

And the descent

Falls the Shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom

For Thine is

Life is

For Thine is the

This is the way the world ends

This is the way the world ends

This is the way the world ends

Not with a bang but a whimper.

 www.votemully.org The People's Choice. 
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No, It’s Not Ironic. Because There is Zero Expectation and No Paradox, Alanis

Best Experienced With:          Alanis Morissette;             Isn’t It Ironic

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Y1IqdpQls4

An English exercise for all of us to work on this evening.  While somewhat subtle to most of us, there is a significant difference between irony and coincidence or bad luck.  Please pull out your Sharpie marker and circle your choice in the lyrics below.   Your choices are (I, BL, C, TIHLI)

Circle “I” if it is true “irony”

Circle “BL” if it is just “bad luck”

Circle “C” if it’s just “coincidence”

Circle “TIHLI” if it’s ”That Is How Life Is”

When you are finished, please place your computer screen face down on your desk and wait for the rest of us to finish.  No, you may not have a hall pass.  Please do not tease the strange, new kid in the back corner:  we do not choose our families.  If English is your second language, please use the Spanish translation on the video.  Please cue it up and…..go.   You have sixteen minutes.  Please show all your work.

An old man turned ninety-eight
He won the lottery and died the next day
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s a black fly in your Chardonnay
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s a death row pardon two minutes too late
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
And isn’t it ironic…dontcha think

It’s like rain on your wedding day (I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s a free ride when you’ve already paid
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s the good advice that you just didn’t take
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
Who would’ve thought…it figures

Mr. Play It Safe was afraid to fly
He packed his suitcase and kissed his kids goodbye
He waited his whole damn life to take that flight
And as the plane crashed down he thought
“Well isn’t this nice…”
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
And isn’t it ironic…dontcha think

It’s like rain on your wedding day
It’s a free ride when you’ve already paid
It’s the good advice that you just didn’t take
Who would’ve thought…it figures

Well life has a funny way of sneaking up on you
When you think everything’s okay and everything’s going right
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
And life has a funny way of helping you out when
You think everything’s gone wrong and everything blows up
In your face
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)

A traffic jam when you’re already late (I, BL, C, TIHLI)
A no-smoking sign on your cigarette break
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s like ten thousand spoons when all you need is a knife
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
It’s meeting the man of my dreams
And then meeting his beautiful wife
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
And isn’t it ironic…dontcha think
A little too ironic…and yeah I really do think…

It’s like rain on your wedding day
It’s a free ride when you’ve already paid
It’s the good advice that you just didn’t take
Who would’ve thought…it figures

Life has a funny way of sneaking up on you (I, BL, C, TIHLI)
Life has a funny, funny way of helping you out
(I, BL, C, TIHLI)
Helping you out

Favorite definition of irony is:  poignantly contrary to what was expected or intended.  We need a paradox to have true irony and no paradoxical conditions are listed in the song.  None of the “I”’s should be circled because no irony exists in the song.  Below is an excerpt from Webster’s that is a very clear ‘splanation of why none of Ms. Morissette’s song is, in fact, ironic.

Usage Note: The words ironic, irony, and ironically are sometimes used of events and circumstances that might better be described as simply “coincidental” or “improbable,” in that they suggest no particular lessons about human vanity or folly. Thus 78 percent of the Usage Panel rejects the use of ironically in the sentence In 1969 Susie moved from Ithaca to California where she met her husband-to-be, who, ironically, also came from upstate New York. Some Panelists noted that this particular usage might be acceptable if Susie had in fact moved to California in order to find a husband, in which case the story could be taken as exemplifying the folly of supposing that we can know what fate has in store for us. By contrast, 73 percent accepted the sentence Ironically, even as the government was fulminating against American policy, American jeans and videocassettes were the hottest items in the stalls of the market, where the incongruity can be seen as an example of human inconsistency.

PS:  Alanis.  You can come back now.  I’m divorced, she is gone, and flattery will get you everywhere.

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Batman Sound Effects, Onomotopoia’s & JD Salinger

 

Best Experienced With:          Blind Melon;           No Rain

(Please right click on the link below to open the suggested music for this evening’s treatise that has absolutely nothing to do with business, unless you believe that reading the classics broadens your mind.  Especially the classics written by misanthropes.  Which I do.  RIP, Mr. Salinger.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-6Lgc3Fvzw

 

Clatter

Splat

Ouch

Smack

Bang

Pop

Plunk

Twang

Clunk

Hoot

Jingle

Pow

Ring ring

Squeal

Bong

Snort

Buzz

Crackle

Whoosh

Ratchet

Clap

Bubble

Slash

Whack

Pitter-patter

Hoot

Eek!

When I hear “there can be only one”, sometimes I will think of The Highlander and blades and beheading.  More often than not I think of JD Salinger because there can only be one JD Salinger.    Who else wrote a few masterpieces and said “go away”?  Love the man for his work and his intestinal fortitude to say “go away”.  There will forever be an empty carpet square up here in The Attic for Mr. Salinger and no hard feelings when he never, ever shows up to join us. 

Most loved JD Salinger prose:

On girls:

“I was half in love with her by the time we sat down. That’s the thing about girls. Every time they do something pretty, even if they’re not much to look at, or even if they’re sort of stupid, you fall half in love with them, and then you never know where the hell you are. Girls. Jesus Christ. They can drive you crazy.”

On the great beyond:

 

“I hope to hell that when I do die somebody has the sense to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except sticking me in a goddamn cemetery. People coming and putting a bunch of flowers on your stomach on Sunday, and all that crap. Who wants flowers when you’re dead? Nobody.” 

 

On sharing with a loved one:


“Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.”

 

On whistling and most couples we see in restaurants:

“I don’t know about bores. Maybe you shouldn’t feel too sorry if you see some swell girl getting married to them. They don’t hurt anybody most of them, and maybe they’re all terrific whistlers or something. Who the hell knows? Not me.”

 

On Esme, love, and squalor:

 

He said I was unequipped to meet life because I had no sense of humor.”

 

On visitors:

 

“Go away”

 

 

 

 

The Mind of Mully

 

All I can say

Is that my life is pretty plain

I like watching

The puddles gather rain…….

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Hyperbole Jeopardy

Best Experienced With:          Coyote Shivers;             Sugar High

(please right click on the link below to open the suggested background music in a new window.  Please show all your work.   No, you may not have a hall pass.   When finished, please turn over your paper and wait quietly for the rest of the class to finish.   No, you still may not have a hall pass.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8X2DOTyoTY&feature=related

Answers

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White Bread, Honkey…………Cracker

 

 Best Experienced With:             Cracker;         Useless Stuff

(Editor’s note:  65.7% of the current posts on Mind of Mully Biz Haus Shoppe remain business based, fulfilling the “Biz” requirement in the upper panel there.  This MLOG is political and does not fulfill that “Biz” requirement; however, I wear the superhero cape and will continue to make the swooshing sounds.  Thos os you visiting for business reasons, stop back soon.  We will have something on constrained dynamics, BPR, and unusual fruits and vegetables)

 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WFDwcHiRJoY

These days, it infinitely entertaining to be a white, male, upper middle class person in these United States.  After all these years, white, male, upper middle class persons are finally the underdog.  As a white, male upper middle class person and a fan of the underdog disenfranchised and dispossessed for years, I can finally root for myself guilt free.  Clearly (according to the Tea Party, Glenn Beck, and many others), we white men are being held down by The Man!

Last time I felt like this was 1989 covering a sales territory in Boston that included Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, and Mattapan.  The Harlem of Boston.  Had two choices when calling on those clinics in Roxbury, Mattapan, and Jamaica Plain.  First choice was leave Dover, NH at 5:00 a.m., arrive in that portion of Boston by 6:30 a.m. (before the crack houses got rolling), sprint through sales calls, and be back over in Salem by 8:07 a.m.   Second choice involved modified semiautomatic weapons and galvanizing the black on black saltpeteresque Bonneville sedan.  Ever conscious of my expense account, choice one ruled the day.

Back in 1989, I was the only white male being kept down by The System and The Man.  Since January, 2009 there are hundreds millions of us dispossessed and disenfranchised white, upper middle class male persons.  Am fortunate to have my brethren lined up side by side, yelling from the tops of our collective lungs that we are mad as hell.  We white, upper middle class male are not going to take it any longer.  Heck no.

My first political experience was in 1978 when my father, Glove Man, ran for Westlake city council as an Independent.  For the most part, Glove Man leans pretty far to the right and mom leans well to the left.  Each votes for the person and how that person’s moral and ethical compass lines up with theirs.  Great place to incubate and learn to respectfully disagree.  Glove Man allowed me to pound “Mulligan for City Council” signs in people’s front yards, an interesting form of torture given the October Land of Cleve temperatures and the vast quantities of clay under the grass.

In high school we had a mock Congress.  To this day, am certain that the idea of that exercise was to dissuade all Westlake High students from checking the box reading “Do Congresslike Things” on our career adventure list.  To this day, I fall fast asleep whenever someone says “Robert’s Rules of Order” .   While words like “fillbuster” and “gerrymander” are fun to say, they are quite boring in actual practice.    I was Alan Cranston, Senate Minority Whip and Crypt Keeper look alike.   Wanted to be Teddy Kennedy because that seemed to fit somewhat better.

Kenneth Blackwell has a new book out with a fascinating title.  It is an exceptionally long title.  It is also an exceptionally incendiary title.  It is the type of title that will make you stop at an airport book store and gawk, even if you are late for your plane.  The book title is The Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency and the Keys to Getting It All Overturned.  That’s one heck of a title for a book!

Kenneth Blackwell is not a white, upper middle class male:  he is a black, upper middle class male and was once Cincinnati’s mayor.   Not certain if he is qualified to be lined up with the rest of us being held down and disenfranchised by The Man these days.   Perhaps we will let him join because he was mayor of the whitest, most conservative city in America.  Perhaps we will let him join because he was part and parcel of the group that prevented that evil photographer Robert Mapplethorpe from showing his nasty photos at the Cincinnati Contemporary Art Center back in 1990.

An exhibit that those heathens in New York, California, Oklahoma, Kentucky, ad infinitum misguidedly allowed to enter their cities.   Not sure how Mr. Blackwell fits into our repressed white, upper middle class male cause, I only know that he is driving our bus and The Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency and the Keys to Getting It All Overturned is soon to be our instruction manual and biblical text.

Flipped through the book the other day and I agree with much of the economic principles.   Each time the government has meddled too deeply in the United States economy, the results are generally awful.   We saw this after the 1929 depression:  the second dip was because the government interfered too much and accepted incorrect Keynesian principles.  The same principles applied in 2009i.   Wrong……and exceptionally wrong for we repressed white, upper middle class males.   Drive our bus more rapidly, Mr. Blackwell!   Pedal to the metal.

Am very much looking forward to remainder of President Obama’s current term.  There’s nothing more satisfying than playing the martyr and I look fantastic standing atop the grape jelly covered bully pulpit with a crown of concertina wire on my head and a bloodied, leather self flagellation device in my left hand.   Moreover, am looking forward to the hundreds of thousands in reparations each of us white, male upper class men will be able to sue for in 2014.  I’m going to buy a pony.

What are you going to buy?

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Dinosaur Junior, David Herbert Richards Lawrence, (and) Cyanide & Happiness

 

 

 

Best Experienced With:   Dinosaur Junior;    Out There

(Please right click on the link below to open the suggested background music for this evening’s poetry, comic, and musical gathering.   This is Number 197 for Mind of Mully Biz Haus Shoppe.   Number 200 will be eponymous) 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z81LcFhmqP4 

 

 

The first time I heard Dinosaur Junior, I thought of DH Lawrence’s poetry because Dinosaur Junior is like placing DH Lawrence poetry against a backdrop of screaming electric guitars and then slashing the pallete with razor blades.   As Spin magazine once said on its cover:  “J Mascis is God”.

Amen

DH Lawrence (1885-1930).   Boo ya

Wild Things in Captivity

Wild things in captivity
while they keep their own wild purity
won't breed, they mope, they die.

All men are in captivity,
active with captive activity,
and the best won't breed, though they don't know why.

The great cage of our domesticity
kills sex in a man, the simplicity
of desire is distorted and twisted awry.

And so, with bitter perversity,
gritting against the great adversity,
they young ones copulate, hate it, and want to cry.

Sex is a state of grace.
In a cage it can't take place.
Break the cage then, start in and try.

 

I Am Like a Rose:

I am myself at last; now I achieve

My very self, I, with the wonder mellow,

Full of fine warmth, I issue forth in clear

And single me, perfected from my fellow.

Here I am all myself.  No rose-bush heaving

Its limpid sap to culmination has brought

Itself more sheer and naked out of the green

In stark-clear roses, than I to myself am brought.

The Appeal

You, Helen, who see the stars
As mistletoe berries burning in a black tree,
You surely, seeing I am a bowl of kisses
Should put your mouth to mine and drink of me.

Helen, you let my kisses steam
Wasteful into the night's black nostrils; drink
Me up, I pray; oh you, who are Night's bacchante,
How can you from my bowl of kisses shrink?

 

Gloire de Dijon

When she rises in the morning
I linger to watch her;
She spreads the bath-cloth underneath the window
And the sunbeams catch her
Glistening white on the shoulders,
While down her sides the mellow
Golden shadow glows as
She stoops to the sponge, and her swung breasts
Sway like full-blown yellow
Gloire de Dijon roses.

She drips herself with water, and her shoulders
Glisten as silver, they crumple up
Like wet and falling roses, and I listen
For the sluicing of their rain-dishevelled petals.
In the window full of sunlight
Concentrates her golden shadow
Fold on fold, until it glows as
Mellow as the glory roses.

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Swing Dancing With Hala @ The Ramses Hilton In Cairo (…magical)

 

Best Experienced With:     Michael Franti and Spearhead;   Sounds of Sunshine

(Please right click on the link below to open the suggested background music to this evening’s explanation of why I am still in The LJ instead of cracking a malt liquor with Anderson Cooper at the Ramses Hilton in Cairo.   “One, two, three….uh-huh”)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=in59qI5xP5g

My first day in Cairo would have begun right……..now.    Because of The Man, my first day in Cairo did not begin.   The Man ruined my vacation, yet The Man is still going down.   The Man always goes down, especially these days, because as John Naisbitt wrote in Megatrends:  “the new source of power is not money in the hands of a few, but information in the hands of many”.  Down with The Man.   Up with Cinnabon.

There is a Cinnabon at Terminal A of the Lindberg Field in San Diego.   Back when my metabolism was as strong as Evander Holyfield, would pick up six or seven dozen full size Cinnabon rolls with extra frosting for the six mile ride home to The LJ.    There is nothing like airport Cinnabon rolls with extra frosting after a cross country flight.   Tasty.

My Wednesday morning began at 4:45 a.m. as it often does, performing email maintenance while watching CNN on a hotel bed.  Four teenie tiny cups of watered down hotel lobby coffee to the left on the night stand.   Looked like all was cool in Cairo until 5:15 a.m. PST when Anderson Cooper got the crap beat out of him on his morning walk from the Ramses Hilton to Tahrir Square.  The correct question is not “why would anyone want to punch Anderson Cooper ten times in the head?”   The correct question is “given the chance and a free shot, who wouldn’t want to punch Anderson Cooper ten times in the head?”  The Man was back in full force in Cairo Wednesday and The Man wanted to ruin my Cairo vacation.   The Man hates to lose power…and The Man loves to ruin my vacations.

When The Man starts hauling away the Amnesty International folks (which The Man did in Cairo this afternoon) and imposes Draconian measures, the pendulum swings the other way.   There’s not a pendulum in the galaxy that stops in the middle.   When The Man sees His power slipping away like sanity slipped away from Kanye following his mother’s passing, The Man gets angry.  Like so many version of The Man before him (Joey Stalin, Pinochet, Suharto, The Shah of Iran, Mobutu, Batista, Papa Doc, Trujillo, and Mugabe), Hosni got angry when he saw his power slipping away.  

Delta Airlines is not afraid of The Man.     Four hours after Delta cancelled Flight 84 from JFK to Cairo on Wednesday, they made me whole by rebooking me through Paris.  In fact, they gave me a sweet nineteen hour Friday layover which I planned to use for a late lunch with Nicolas Sarkozy, followed by a viewing of Canova’s Cupid and Pysche Standing at The Louvre.    Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and Canova always gets me into the right Valentine’s Day frame of mind.   Delta came through.    

 
Your flight has been cancelled.  You have been
rebooked on a new flight.
 
Delta Confirmation #HJRA6C
 
 
 
Check In
 
   
 

 

 
 
Dear Daniel C Mulligan,  
   
We are trying to contact you because your flight has been cancelled.  We have rebooked you on the best available flight and we’ll keep trying to reach you by phone.  Please review the information for new flight numbers, departure and arrival times.  
   
 
   
   
 
   
 
NEW
   
   
 
   
 
 
 
Thursday, February 3
Flight Delta 28
 
 
 
 
Departs 3:25 pm Atlanta, Georgia
Arrives 6:10 am (February 4)
Paris – Charles De Gaulle, France
 
 
 
 
 
Choose seat
 
 
   
   
 
   
 
NEW
   
   
 
   
 
 
 
Friday, February 4
Flight Air France 508
 
 
 
 
Departs 11:30 pm Paris – Charles De Gaulle, France
Arrives 9:00 am (February 5)
Cairo, Egypt
 
 
 
 
 
Choose seat
 
 
   
   
 
 
Check In
 
   
 
   
 
   
 
CANCELLED
   
   
 
   
 
 
 
Thursday, February 3
Flight Delta 84 – Cancelled
 
 
 
 
Departs 5:25 pm Atlanta, Georgia
Arrives 4:25 pm (February 4)
Cairo, Egypt
 
 
 
 
   
   
   
 
 
   
   
We apologize for this interruption in your travel plans.  You can check-in online or at one of our self service kiosks. If you already have your boarding pass, just scan the bar code at one of our boarding scanners or kiosks to receive your updated travel document.  
   
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Hilton Hotels are afraid of The Man.    Spoke with three or four hundred folks at the Ramses Hilton between 8:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m. Wednesday night (Thursday morning), endeavoring to confirm the car service from the airport to my hotel on Saturday morning.    All three (or four) hundred folks repeatedly mentioned the magical mystical Mr. Samuel.  Mr. Samuel had the power to tell me whether or not the odds were with me or against me to get an armored limo transport from Cairo International to the Ramses Hilton Saturday morning.   Below is the reenactment of the conversation Mr. Samuel and I had from 3:47 a.m. (PST) to 4:03 a.m. PST Thursday morning.    For the best reenactment experience, use my voice when it says “Me” and use an Egyptian head concierge’s voice when it says “Mr. Samuel”.    I have a bit of a cold, so please make my voice particularly deep and throaty.   

Begin transcription of conversation with Mr. Samuel at Ramses Hilton in Cairo, Egypt:  3:47 a.m. Pacific Standard Time

Me:  “Hello, Mr. Samuel, it is very nice to finally speak with you!”

Mr. Samuel:  “Who is this?”

Me:  “Daniel Charles Mulligan!”

Mr. Samuel:  “Should I know you?”

Me:  “Not yet….but you will, Mr. Samuel!  I have a Rolling Stone press pass and plan on being Rolling Stone’s most prolific Cairo journalist next week.   I have a reservation that I had to move from Friday arrival to Saturday morning because Delta cancelled the JFK to Cairo flight.  I am now arriving on Air France flight 508 from Paris to Cairo and I arrive at 9:00 a.m. this Saturday and would like to arrange a car and a driver to meet me at the airport at 10:00 a.m.”

Mr. Samuel:  (long pause)  “You are aware that we are having some slight difficulties in our downtown area right now, Mr. Mulligan?    Our property is adjacent to Tahrir Square.”

Me:  “Mr. Samuel, you are a master of understatement, sir.    Indeed.   That is why I am calling.   I spoke with several folks at your hotel throughout the evening and early morning and each has explained that you are the one man who can get me a driver for Saturday.   How can we make that happen?”

Mr. Samuel:  “This will be somewhat difficult”

Me:  “Nothing is too difficult for you and me, Mr. Samuel.   We can figure it out.”

Mr. Samuel:  “Well, they are saying that the curfew will be now changed to 3:00 p.m. to 11: a.m. soon.”

Me:  “Giving us a full four hours to get me picked up on Saturday!   Excellent!  How far is the hotel from the airport?”

Mr. Samuel:  “Roughly 22 kilometers or 40 minutes”

Me:  “Outstanding.    Will the driver have a sign with ‘Mulligan” written on it?  May I truncate it to ‘Mully’?   I will explain why when I get there.”

Mr. Samuel:  “Mr. Mulligan, perhaps you do not understand.   I cannot guarantee that I will have a car there because there is some trouble in the streets and when you get here, you may not be able to reach us by telephone because the airport is quite chaotic.”

Me:  “Side question, can you make me a dinner reservation at the Windows on the World restaurant for Saturday evening?   A romantic corner table would be ideal.   I noticed that Hala Gorani is staying at the Ramses Hilton and she is quote brilliant…with piercing, beautiful eyes.    Am planning on inviting her to dinner when I arrive and would appreciate the best table you have.   A window table.    Will tip you handsomely.”

Mr. Samuel:  “Certainly, Mr. Mulligan”

Me:  “OK, so when I grab my luggage, I will look for the man with the ‘Mully’ sign at 10:00 a.m.  We will jump in the car and I will shake your hand by noon on Saturday.   Deal?”

Mr. Samuel:  “Mr. Mulligan, I cannot guarantee you a car on Saturday morning, nor can I guarantee you a car for your return trip, either.   We have had several journalists come right back to the hotel because they were unable to get into the airport for their return flights.   Even if we can get you to the hotel, you may not be able to get into the airport for your return flight.”

Me:  “How are yo0u fixed for supplies?”

Mr. Samuel:  “Excuse me?”

Me:  “Supplies.    Are they restocking you on supplies daily at the Hilton?   Do you receive food, beer, and whiskey each day?”

Mr. Samuel:  “Yes, sir.”

Me:  “Excellent.     Back to the airport livery question.   I hear the distinctive “chop, chop, chop, chop” sound of helicopters near your hotel.    Are any of those helicopters yours?  If so, perhaps you could send one of those to pick me up Saturday morning.”

Mr. Samuel:  “No, Mr. Mulligan.  Those are military helicopters.   They are not the Hilton’s helicopters.”

Me:  “Crap.   So what are my odds of getting to the hotel and then getting back to the airport next Wednesday?”

Mr. Samuel:  “Less than fifty percent, Mr. Mulligan.   You may spend your entire time at the airport”

Me:  “Crap”

End transcription of conversation with Mr. Samuel at Ramses Hilton in Cairo, Egypt:  4:03 a.m. Pacific Standard Time

Cancelled the hotel reservation and Delta flights shortly thereafter.   My dreams of doing the Carolina Shag on the Windows of the World dance floor to Michael Franti’s “Sound of Sunshine” with Hala Gorani died shortly thereafter.    Tuesday evening, in my mind’s eye, I saw Lester Holt and Brian Williams watching Hala and me swing dance jealously from their table before grudgingly accepting that there was a new sheriff at the Ramses Hilton.   They would have led to the standing ovation as the song petered out and Michael repeated “when the sun goes down, when the sun goes down”.

Am quite willing to miss the Sunday morning mimosas with Christiane Amanpour and Mallory Simon and was quite willing to take a few rocks to the head while watching a group of downtrodden, abandoned, and forsaken humans fight for their rights.  There are few things in life that make me more happy than watching fellow humans take back their God given rights from The Man.  There was, however. no way in hell I was going to get stuck in the Cairo International Airport for five days.   Because there is no Cinnabon at the Maṭār al-Qāhirah al-Duwaliyy.   And that would have sucked pretty badly.

Screw you, Hosni.    God bless you, Anti-Hosnians.    Fight the good fight and win with your spirit.

What to do with all these Rolling Stone press credentials, though?

Thank you Stevie JC and Kinko’s.    Will use these Rolling Stone press credentials at the next revolution.   There are always more revolutions and there are always more of The Man to bring down.

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