BERLIN- Historians know that at some point in the early 20th century, a great cataclysm befell Germany. It’s borders shrank, it’s cities were razed, and millions of people died. However, exactly what occurred in a nation known only for peaceful mountain villages, chocolates and beer between 1933 and 1945 remains a mystery.
“The problem when studying this period is a fundamental lack of statues,” said Doctor Rüdiger Kraus, an historian with the University of Freiburg. “Had there been any major statuary from this time, we would have a much better understanding of German history and know exactly what had happened here. Unfortunately, this relatively recent catastrophe will remain an enigma unless we happen to uncover some lost sculptures buried beneath our modern cities.”
While it may be possible to decipher the gap years using newspapers, books, journals, sound recordings, photographs, films and interviews with the people who lived during that time, these sources cannot produce anywhere near the sufficient historical record that comes from a single statue.
While the exact nature of the Great German Calamity may never be uncovered, historians have speculated that the nation may have been struck by a very large but very isolated earthquake, an impact event caused by a meteor, or even some sort of war, though this remains a farfetched hypothesis.
July is a tough month for Facebook. Several major corporations have boycotted the social media website/election meddler in response to hate groups being able to freely spread their repulsive rhetoric with little to no repercussions, including posts from the current US president. It seems that in response to this, Facebook has adjusted yet again to bypass my AdBlock extension as I am seeing more sponsored posts for half-assed law firms advertising services for victims of sexual assault while in the Boy Scouts or for victims of Zantac side-effects. That’s pretty much every unwanted ad wedged between my friends’ posts.
Just in one scroll, I had over a dozen ads for assault victims while a scout. I was never a scout. Your algorithm and data harvesting sucks!
I started reporting these adverts as most are scams to begin with, especially those promoted by pages with such elegant names as “Ukdfg,” “Boudreaux's Butt Paste” or “Wgjdfghgjfgh” (yes, these are all real):
That is when I noticed yet another significant change to Facebook’s layout. For the past few weeks, a new tab has emerged under the “Explore” option: Lift Black Voices. This was in response to worldwide protests against systemic racism, especially in policing, after the murder of George Floyd. The tab will provide the user with news and groups for reform as well as links to Black artists, authors, speakers, musicians, etc. to help end the whitewashing. For the last several weeks since this emerged, it was at the top of the “Explore” menu. Today, it’s at the very bottom and hidden from view:
Oh, look at that! Just as Facebook is trying to defend itself amidst a boycott that resulted from Facebook itself amplifying the voices of racists and white nationalist groups, it decides that now is also the best time to actively hide the Lift Black Voices tab! I guess you really didn’t care about racial justice and equality after all, and just added that to be “cool” during the early stages of the protests.
Nothing says “we’re not racist” like continuing to promote white supremacist activity on your platform while hiding resources that promote equal rights for every human being! What an absolute load of wank! Facebook will give a Grand Dragon of the KKK full advertising accessibility, but hide one tab that contains news regarding police reform or that promotes Black artists, entertainers, teachers, etc.
I’ve saved this picture for nearly a year and I think that given all of this, Mark Zuckerberg deserves the full dose:
CHAPELTOWN, MA- Amidst ongoing protests against racially charged police killings in the United States, the suburban centre of Chapeltown, Massachusetts, which sits just outside the southwest corner of former textile king Lowell, called an emergency meeting to discuss what their community could do to combat the grotesque misconduct that routinely occurs within their own police department.
The Chapeltown Police have been the subject of scrutiny for several years as officers have been found to arrest non-white citizens to fill quotas placed by Chief Jimmy Spines, involved in the vandalization of local synagogues and mosques, random beatings of unarmed individuals walking their dogs, and the notorious raid on the Jakobson farm in October of 2019 where nearly the entire department descended onto the small home after mistaking the family’s pet pigs for captive police officers.
“I’m afraid to leave my home on any given day,” said Chapeltown resident Lisa Grimes. “It would be safer if Ted Bundy were resurrected and charged with our security. I’ve been pulled over on several occasions because some cop thinks I’m hot, and then I am ticketed because I refused to give the officer a fucking blow job! These inbred, bumbling, sexist, racist assholes are a bigger threat to us than any outside entity!”
“Had I known earlier how I would be treated here, I would have stayed in El Salvador or would have found the resources to seek asylum in Canada. There is no protection here for anyone, let alone the minority population.” wrote Carlos Santiago, who was unable to speak aloud as his tongue had been removed by Officer Delano Mackenzie-Moss in 2015 after he was arrested simply to fill Chief Spines’ Hispanic/Latino quota for the day. No charges were ever filed against Mackenzie-Moss, and he continues to serve with the Chapeltown Police Department.
After nearly the entire town had revealed their personal horrors regarding their interactions with local authorities, the department itself was granted time to defend its past and current actions.
“Der, wes stoppa the violence and the crimes, der,” began Chief Jimmy Spines. “You can’t not just gets rids of the po-polices and thinks that yous will be safe. Wes protects you from the bad bads. If you defund-ud the police, whos will bes there to help yous sniff for truffles? Whos will bes there to spreads new strains of da swine flus, der?”
Despite a nearly unanimous vote by the townspeople to defund and completely rebuild the police department, the Status-quo Warriors won the round as Town Manager Peter Conicalnads decided to overrule the vote and keep everything as is. Mr. Conicalnads was later seen receiving a large bag with a dollar sign on it from Chief Spines behind the town hall after the meeting had adjourned.
THE NORTH POLE- Citing concerns over the coronavirus, Santa Claus has at last made good on his threats from Rankin and Bass stop-motion films and has officially cancelled Christmas 2020. The news came just six months before the holiday was scheduled to take place around the Gentile world.
“The risk of travelling around the entire planet, visiting every good Christian household, and eating cookies is far too great,” said Santa in an interview with KID TV. “The last thing the world needs is for Santa to get sick too! Ho, ho, ho!”
The news has sent shockwaves throughout the child community and was met with tears and category five temper tantrums on six of the Earth’s seven continents. Rioting toddlers were seen around the globe setting fire to doll houses and Matchbox cars, and throwing blocks through the windows of Playmobil businesses. In Washington DC, US President Donald Trump had ordered that the unruly children be tear gassed in an effort to quell the juvenile uprisings.
“I understand if the kiddies are upset,” continued Santa. “But this is the way things have to be right now. If you don’t understand what it’s like to come downstairs to a shitload of presents from me on Christmas morning, why not ask your Jewish friends. Ho, ho, ho!”
The cancelling of Christmas also comes amidst an investigation by the World Health Organization that Santa Claus himself may have been the greatest super-spreader of COVID-19 as he was exhibiting a severe dry cough and shortness of breath on Christmas Eve of last year before entering the homes of billions without a face mask. Santa has denied these allegations.
I am sitting in my parlour just after midnight contemplating everything that’s been going on for the past six months, and at last have some good news. Besides coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and fatalities being at an all-time low where I live thanks to early, aggressive measures to protect the people and the willingness of our community to take the necessary precautions (masks and gloves in public, and a strong adherence to maintaining a two metre distance) I am happy to announce the beginning of online music lessons as promised in my last update.
(And I just have to add that the COVID-19 cases are so incredibly low here that we are even allowing eat in services at restaurants starting tomorrow, though I would personally avoid that for the time being; I had a panic attack when I went for a haircut. It’s just such a ray of hope to see some semblance of the ordinary returning, albeit with face masks.)
For personal security, I have partnered with TakeLessons.com to provide instructions on the piano and electric bass in the safety (and convenience) of your own home. This partnership allows me to focus on teaching without the need for the red tape that comes with administrative tasks that typically would consume my schedule when not practising or conducting lessons.
Having my background check on display is just gravy that gives me much more confidence to teach students of all ages and know that parents/guardians can trust me. Online lessons are available starting today and will be offered year-round rather than on a semester/trimester system so despite all the craziness going on in the world, I can at least try to keep some normalcy in the lives of young musicians and adult learners while we all adapt to these new circumstances.
I am still working on a solution for live streaming performances. The technical issues have been worked out, but I am struggling to find the poise to perform online to an audience that I cannot see and is likely filled with trolls, as well as where to conduct streams. That will come in a third, and hopefully final, installment of The Future and I hope to stream at least twice a week on average.
This is a short update to announce the arrival of online private lessons, and I cannot wait to see all my students again. Stay safe, keep washing your hands and avoid the evil robot dogs that enforce social distancing! Those are straight out of Half-Life 2 and are only working for The Combine. Heck, modern cops look like the Combine Overwatch now! When all this corona is over, I’ll be the first one to get yelled at to pick up that can.