The prestige of having been employed in the same entry level job for seven years (without promotion) has lead many of our readers to seek my advice in career matters[1]. Traditionally I answer via private correspondence, mostly with biting personal commentary and ugly sexual innuendo, but a recent wave of joblessness amongst my cohort has convinced to disseminate my wisdom in a more public fashion.

My time in the business world has taught me exactly one thing: context is more important than content. Being able to frame information in a self-constructive fashion is the entirety of the battle; master the spin, and you win.

Let us examine a few common errors of phrasing and context and explore stronger alternatives.



(Originally posted at SAM THE TURTLE)

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(Originally posted at SAM THE TURTLE)

I do not have children but my friends do. Children are, by their nature, quite stupid and prone to dying. My friends are very tired and would prefer their children be alive and smart, but often settle for alive. Eventually the kids start talking and demanding answers to questions of such volume and frequency that it breaks the human mind.

I do not have children, but I have answers. As a public service I have decided to dig into the backlog of questions that my friends are too exhausted to answer, and  fill the gaps in their children’s knowledge . Each parent emailed me a list of queries and promised to read my response to their child in full, without editorial interference. I do not believe in speaking down to kids so some of the terms and concepts may go over their heads, but I’m confident that the essential truth will make its way through.


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Judge a society not by its heroes, but its monsters. A culture’s heroes speak to the best of its ambition, but it is the monster that teaches their children the hard lessons of caution, temperance, and tolerance that a parent might be too tired or drunk to articulate at the end of a long day. So why not have a monster teach it? I still can’t piss outside, such is my fear of “Sinjin The Cruel Moth what snatches up rude boy’s peepees”.

It is thus that we begin our series examining the history, menace, and broader cultural connotations of each nation’s monsters. Let us begin.

Loch Ness Monster


(Originally posted at SAM THE TURTLE)


 A pile of old rags strewn across a log, or, a dirty Scottish plesiosaur too stupid to find the ocean? In the darkest of legends, if they can be believed, a guy was once down by the lake and saw it kind of swimming around…and then it left, only to be seen by another guy a few years later. Each time it was seen it did a little less, until those who were drawn by its antediluvian malice were condemned to stand by the shore, with not much going on, until they got bored and bought an over-priced souvenir.

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