Rounding out the year! With death, and good cheer!
Enough about me, we have some catching up to do. While I was busy procreating five times a day (FIVE), residents of Bulo Burto in Somalia were told to get on their knees, and pray five times a day, or be beheaded. And while there were moments that I found myself begging to be sent to Somalia, I maintained focus and kept my head, as the did the Somali citizens of Bulo Burto, who were also liberated this week from Islamo-fascism, by Ethiopian forces.
In other death and procreation news, it seems that Indian men don't quite measure up. According to a study done by the Indian Council of Medical Research 60 percent of men in the financial capital Mumbai had penises about 1 inch shorter than the standard condom. Thus, the condoms keep falling off, which leads to an increase in the spread of HIV.
"We need more vending machines for condoms of different sizes so people can pick a condom with confidence that is suited to their needs," said Dr. Chander Puri, who conducted the study.
'I'll have the SMALL condom please'...said with confidence? There really is no good way to publicize this story, is there? Death by sex...or telling the world you are a nation with below average size penises. Tough choice.
If Dr. Chander had just waited a few days before going to the press, the solution is already at hand, so to speak. The Institute for Condom Consultancy in Germany is hard at work (again, so to speak) on a spray on condom.
"We're trying to develop the perfect condom for men that's suited to every size of penis. We're very serious," said Jan Vinzenz Krause. " "It works by spraying on latex from nozzles on all sides. We call it the '360 degree procedure' - once round and from top to bottom. It's a bit like a car wash."
I once had the 360 degree procedure, and it was not at all like a car wash, but did cost about the same.
Speaking of tough choices and bitter endings, in November we learned that if you are offered tea and sushi by a former KGB agent, just say 'no thank you'. A shifty Russian poisoned in London with radioactive tea by a shifty Italian, or so the current theory goes - that is b-movie material.
The whole episode proved an embarresment for British security who somehow allowed radioactive material to enter the country on a commercial flight. But it turned out to be an unexpected boon for the James Bond franchise, and coffee sales around the world.
Come on guys, you put my underwear though the machine twice. You took away my toothpaste. And you can't find a vial of radioactive material that left a glowing smudge from Moscow to Berlin?
December was the month the scales almost tipped back in favor of the Republicans in the US Senate, with Cheney the decider-in-waiting, after South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson suffered an unexpected stroke, just moments after having tea and sushi with none other than Dick Cheney.
Remember former CIA director William Casey who died in 1987 of a mysterious stroke just before he was to testify in the Iran Contra hearings. The man responsible for keeping the American hostages captive in Iran so Carter would loose the 1980 election. Also had tea and sushi with Dick.
Johnson remains in critical condition and will likely miss the opening session in January, which is really no big deal. The Senate will be conducting its usual business of rubber stamping billions in war spending, cutting taxes and doing away with all forms of assistance to anyone who makes less than seven figures.
Not to worry Tim, even though you suffered a stroke, have diminished brain function and are under heavy sedation, you are still smarter than 49 US Senators.
It was sad news for Turkmens everywhere. Saparmurat Niyazov, the idiosyncratic President of Turkmenistan, father of the Turkmens, and the man who gave himself the moniker, "President for Life", resigned in December, permanently. Saparmurat rode his Bactrian camel to meet the great Turkmen in the sky. The official cause of death; heart attack. Unofficially, he was found slumped over a toilet seat have ingested a coctail of painkillers and barbituates.
But according to unofficial sources, who would only speak to Parsing the World in exchange for a large sum of cash, Saparmurat died of heartbreak, having missed out on his one opportunity for a lasting legacy - a cameo in the Borat movie. According to my sources, Saparmurat was heard muttering, "what so nice about Kazakhstan? Why I not mocked by such Jew?" He then passed away on a lavish kilim, with fine stitching and a delicate fringe.
And as we round out the news of the year, how can we forget Iraq, as much as we may want to. It was a December to remember, as more US soliders died this month than any other month this year. Nevertheless, Bush has a plan, and it ain't that rusty ol' plan the Iraq Study Group (not an Arab among them) studied so hard to come up with. The one that took seventy points and one year to come to the ground breaking conclusion - lets get the heck outta there.
Bush's plan, contrarian that he is, is to send even more troops into Iraq after the new year, a plan codenamed the 'throw good money after bad Bush study harder plan'.
Why, you might ask, does Bush need a different plan than the one agreed on by the bipartisan panel? Well, it ain't the Iraq Study Groups plan, so he probably figures he gets extra credit. And because more troops will stabilize the country, ya see. It's just for a little while, they'll be back by next Christmas, unlike the ones starting their third tour of duty this month.
Bush, you didn't study at Yale, why pretend to now? Leave the thinking for the big boys. Even Ford agrees, and he's dead. Unlike Saparmurat, there are no missed opportunities here, your legacy is secure no matter what you do. Worst president, ever. So cut and run baby, cut and run. You got a paper trail now, and thats what the whole Study Group thing was about anyway, covering your ass so you could pack our bags in Iraq and let us leave with a shred of dignity.
While Bush was in abject pondery over his Iraqi quagmire, the democratic leadership was flexing its muscle. Harry Reid, Democrat from Nevada and incoming house leader, put his foot down.
Speaking to ABC's "This Week", Reid said, "If it's for a surge -- that is, for two or three months -- and it's part of a program to get us out of there as indicated by this time next year, then, sure, I'll go along with it."
Harry? Have you been having tea with Dick? 'Sure, I'll go along with it' is not what we voted for in November.
With all the studying going on in America, it is was an unusually happy day in Iraq, as the country celebrated the festival of Eid ul-Adha today, a day that Muslims around the world commemorate the Prophet Ibrahim's sacrifice of his son Ismael to Allah, and celebrate forgiveness.
A highlight of the festival is the tradition of "Qurban", were the best domestic animal of the house is brought out and slaughtered, and the meat is then distriubuted equally to the poor and the hungry.
Following that tradition, early this morning, after three years in US custody, the US Military handed over their prodigal son, Saddam Hussein, to a group of Shi'ite militants, masquarading as a democratic government, for the ritual slaughter.
In lew of electricity, jobs, or any possibility of real peace, the meat was given to the poor and hungry.
But not everyone was dancing in the streets. Many were aghast that capital punishment was carried out in a country otherwise know for beheadings, torture and general mehem.
"To execute him on this special day is below any humane standards," Abu Hussein from Lebanon said, speaking for all Abu Husseins around the world.
And speaking of things below any humane standards, Dick Cheney, in a prescient moment brought on by medicated egg nog, and rumination on his new son-in-law, emerged from his own hidey-hole and hailed Ford's pardon of Nixon today.
"Gerald Ford was almost alone in understanding that there can be no healing without pardon."
Nice try, Dick. You may get a pardon from your daughter, who can somehow forgive you for being a closeted gay-basher, but you aren't getting a pardon from this country. Our newly minted democratic Congress and Senate will show you.
Harry? Nancy? Impeachment? Hellllloooooooooo?
I am going to need some of that medicate egg nog.
May 2007 bring peace, happiness and robot independence!