10th CircleInferno, the first volume of Dante Alighieri's masterwork Divina Commedia (I recommend John Ciardi's translations), introduced one of the most enduring metaphors in all of literature: The Nine Circles of Hell. The first circle was Limbo, reserved for those who could never enter Heaven but did not deserve punishment. The other eight circles were devoted to specific types of sins (in order: lust, gluttony, greed, anger, heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery). It was a really, really captivating notion...
|"Yeah, that was pretty slick, wasn't it?"|
And ever since, writers have speculated about a "10th Circle," reserved for a particular type of person whom the writer considers especially heinous, but who doesn't fit neatly into one of Dante's categories.
While I suppose one could make the argument that they belong in the 8th Circle, the people of Planned Parenthood (and their myrmidons in politics and the media) who have resorted to outrageous falsehoods and absurd spin to try to minimize the scandal that is unfolding right now surely deserve something...well, special.
Contra the odious Cecile Richards, this is not a problem of "tone". It's that your organization is nothing more than a nationwide network of for-profit abattoirs. Even if you hadn't finally been caught out in a manner that will be difficult for you to counteract, you and your enablers and apologists would all still richly deserve your spots in Hell...
Things That Make Me Sad: Human Frailty EditionStill bummed out by Yordano Ventura's meltdown in a 10-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates at Kauffman Stadium Monday night (after which he was optioned to Omaha), I watched Jason Vargas take the mound for my beloved Kansas City Royals in Game 2 of the series last night. Jason hadn't pitched in a big league game since beating the Twins in Minneapolis on June 8, due to a strained flexor tendon in his pitching elbow. That's always scary, as I noted at the time, but there was no surgery, just rest and then a rehab assignment down in AA Northwest Arkansas. He was matched up with Pirates All-Star Gerrit Cole (13-3, 2.30 ERA), but Jason's evening ended with one out in the top of the 2nd, after just 26 pitches...
|"That sucks, especially considering you're still bummed out about Alex Gordon."|
|"Well, you know what they say..."|
The Royals did score three runs (two earned) off of Cole in the bottom of the 8th (Jarrod Dyson had the big hit), and although closer Greg Holland wobbled in the 9th the Royals held on for a tense 3-1 victory. Joe Blanton came in to relieve Vargas in the 2nd and was very effective in his three and two-thirds innings (he struck out the first four batters he faced). Ryan Madson took over and pitched a perfect 6th inning, and then All-Stars Kelvin Herrera and Wade Davis (who picked up the win to move his record to 6-1, 0.44 ERA) took the shutout into the 9th.
It's always nice to win, but it always sucks when someone gets hurt. Here's hoping Jason is okay...
Wild Kingdom Bed & Breakfast UpdateAs you can see, the new addition to the buffet offerings has proven to be quite popular...
|"Thanks for springing for the extra-large thistle sock!"|
Famous Guest Star
|"I can't believe you just did that."|
Questions and Answers
I have a recurring fantasy about this conversation. It goes like this:
Donald Trump: Are you accusing me of being an ignorant, opportunistic asshat who doesn't care about anyone but himself?
Me: Why would you ask that?
Until Next Time...In classical music, an intermezzo is a short piece intended to serve as a bridge between sections of a longer work. Many such compositions have become popular in their own right, though, and retain interest completely apart from whatever works they were paired with initially.
Today's send-off is a performance of an intermezzo by Johannes Brahms. It is part of a work called Six Pieces for Piano, Op. 118 that he wrote to honor Clara Schumann, who had promoted his career and premiered many of his works. It is performed by the marvelous Emanuel Ax. Enjoy...