“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

John and the Old Gang

I received an email from a very kind person that has had a run of tough luck. He suffers from a lot of pain and has difficulty sleeping and he explained to me how  the Elephant Bar gave him comfort and company. (that has to be Sam who runs the night shift)  In an unintended way he more or less told me that he liked my posts but most of all enjoyed the comments from the regular longtime posters. (He couldn’t be talking about Alfalfa could he?)

In a heartfelt fashion he thought it would be a shame to break up the old gang and asked me to reconsider.  Here is to you John:


  1. .

    Hell, what can you do?

    Noblesse Oblige



    We probably should get a mug with John's name on it and put it up on the shelf behind the bar with those of the regulars, current and past. Just saying.


  2. Well, there you go; let's hear it for the night shift. :)

  3. "I received an email from a very kind person that has had a run of tough luck. He suffers from a lot of pain and has difficulty sleeping and he explained to me how the Elephant Bar, blah, blah, blah..."

    Tough luck indeed, fuckin whiner!

    difficulty sleeping!!!

    You wanna hear tough luck???
    So's I lay on the bed last night to stretch, listnen to the Carolla Podcast, next thing you know I wake up, it's 3 am, I gotta pee, so what's a poor victim like that gonna do next?'s I stumble into the kitchen, notice I left the TOSTITOS® open on the counter, thank God the ants aren't there yet, decide to have a few, now here's where it starts to get really ugly and remains a little fuzzy, so hang in there, you soft-hearted Saps...

    This has never happened before, so I'm not exactly sure HOW it happened, maybe I resumed stretching, using the counter for support for a back arch while munching TOSTITOS® ?

    Anyways, next thing you know I'm waking up again, but this time I'm heading backwards toward the hardwood floor!

    Now that's a tough luck story, but not the real tough version which you wouldn't even know about, cause I wouldn't be writing this, cause I wouldn't be here, I'd still be in there in the kitchen, lieing there flat on my back, dead as a doornail.
    That's what woulda happened had I not woke up on the trip down, in this case down and out for that longest count of all...

    ...but as luck would have it (in the midst of this otherwise really tough luck story) I did in fact have time to kinda put my hands behind me, causing my buttocks to contact the floor prior to the back of my head striking said hardwood.

    ...lying there taking stock of broken bones, etc. I hear a skitter click click noise and figure it's my glasses flying across the floor.

    Lying there for a minute or two more, taking stock and waiting to see if the brain bleed suddenly turns the World to Black, I look around to see where the glasses were, to find that they weren't:

    It was the walkman which had been clipped to the collar of my T-Shirt, so evidently the impact was hard enough to unclip that mofo and send it flyin.

    Now THERE's your hard luck/hardwood story for you sob sisters, so don't you forget it!

    1. .

      Impressive, but think of the alternative had the worst happened.

      Doug hits head, goes even more unconscious than usual, chokes on a Tostito.

      All communication between Maui and the EB is lost, silence reigns.

      After three or four weeks, someone at the bar says, "things have been pretty quiet around here, any one heard from Doug?"

      After another month, as the election gets closer and Obama's lead is growing, Bob says, "where's Doug when you need him ?" Someone else says, "Gee, I hope nothing happened to the little prick."

      Time passes, Obama wins, and still no diatribe, no hissy fit, no "well now you've done it, you stinking commies, I hope your happy", no rant of any kind floating in from the west. Now, everyone is worried.

      Did he have a brain hemorrhage listening to Rush, did he sink into the ocean along with California, did he get rolled on the beach by some homeless guy, was he secretly done away with by union thugs for openly denouncing their perfidy, or was he run down by a group of homeless, lousy, drugged-up, socialist, losers while protesting an Occupy Maui assault on the surf board industy on the island? No one knew the answer.

      There was additional speculation for a short time. Rufus suggested peak oil. Bob offered a poem entitled, "In Memoriam". Melody, stated that he wasn't really that bad a guy. And out of force of habit, and not very convincingly, Quirk called him a dick.

      After time had passed, memories of the little shit faded, and history painted a different role. The folk lore grew. He became a hero of the EB. The cup with his name on it was moved up a space closer to the center away from that big ugly one on the end, the one with the many handles and the name 'anonymous' scrawled across it.

      Eventually, being bored and having nothing else to do, Quirk wrote a paean to to our island hero, an epic really, the story of a mere man who brought the truth of what he believed (drawn copiously from the Weekly Standard, Rush Limbaugh monologues, The Man Show skits, Mad Magazine, and various right-wing blogs) to a benighted people. It was titled, "Kool-aid for the Misanthropic Mysoginist." Deuce posted it at the EB and it ran for a full 37 posts before being replaced one titled, "Benji Netanyahu Purveyor of Perfidy."

      Over time, "Kool-aid for the Misanthropic Mysoginist" became an oft-quoted cult classic at the EB. Doug passed into legend, joining such sainted heroes as Whit, Buddy Larsen, Habu and the other demi-gods who have passed through the swinging soors of the EB on their way to immortality.

      Just saying. You just never know.


  4. Uhhh...

    ...that offensive comment is still on the previous thread...

    Tell very kind person guy Doug's outta here unless that fucker comes down.

    ...and note this is the first, not the fifteenth threat of this kind from me.

    1. .

      In the Catholic tradition, it's called doing penance for your sins.



  5. i thought the bar was dead?

    well some things never change...