two fifths of a hundred (two fifths in the brain!)

The 100 list, from twenty eight with its ineluctable modality to forty with its even more ineluctable modality.

28. Put the The Iron Rose of Castille in your boutonniere and throw a Guinness down your throat. 101 years ago today in an alternate universe Leopold Bloom woke up, bought a kidney for his breakfast, read the paper on the toilet, tore up a love letter, went to the baths, took a carriage ride to a funeral, wandered into work at the newspaper, had some lunch and listened to music, suffered the insults of an anti-Semite at a pub, strolled along the beach and ogled a lame woman, attended a birth, met up with Stephen Daedalus, went to a brothel, came home, administered oral sex to his wife, fell asleep. Happy Bloomsday!

29. Finally the Catholic church across the block has made the necessary renovations to the cenotaph dedicated to those Unborn Victims of Abortion. Every day I would pass by and think When are they going to get those necessary renovations on? When is the Church finally going to spend more of their money on a monument commemorating those blobs of tissue? I bet those blobs are getting impatient in their heavenly incubators. Now, along with the mock gravestone, there's a little cobbled square about two by three feet in front of it, presumaby to make it more convenient and reverential for those who want to reflect or pray in front of the monument. They should go ahead and erect a statue of someone praying at the cenotaph. The Brain-dead Victims of Catholicism mourning the Unborn Victims of Abortion.

30. I want a monument to the undead victims of abortion as well. It's only fair.

31. Crudest example of unintentional symbolism I've ever seen: In the town of Kilgore, Texas, at one time a centre of oil production and now just another pause in the highway, a pumpjack nodded lazily away right next to a yard of unmarked gravestones. At first I thought they were drawing up oil from beneath a graveyard, which made me a bit sick to my stomach, but then I saw that the gravestones were simply for sale. If any heavy-handed polemicists out there masquerading as writers of fiction want to use this image, go right ahead.

32. Zombies are my favourite monsters, although I'm ready to admit that Buffy the Zombie Slayer would not be a very exciting series.

33. But a zombie-based version of Law & Order would be really cool. "In the world of the undead, zombies crave human brains and solve crimes. These are their stories". Starring Jerry Orbach.

34. Or you could have a show called Law & Order: Cutaways and Outtakes. "In the television production world, editors often cut footage so as to mock and humiliate both cast and crew. These are their pink slips".

35. Sometimes, when no one's around and the moon is full and high, I wander outside and curse Rapid City under my breath. Not that it needs it.

36. Last year I interviewed a South Dakota state politician (please let me know if I've written about this before). The interview took a couple of hours, during which he was polite, welcoming, charismatic and a pleasure to talk with. After the interview he showed me a photo album of himself shaking hands with the many politicians he's met over the decades. I saw Carter, Reagan, Colin Powell, Bushes Big and Little. But no Clinton. Eventually I asked why he had never shaken Clinton's hand. The man dropped his head slightly and said "I was sick the day that Clinton came through town". Then he raised his head again and said "Do you want to know what I think of Clinton?" Absolutely, I said. "Clinton is a whoremonger," he stated. "And his wife is a whore". That's when I realized that it was possible to lead a full and successful life and be batshit insane at the same time.

37. People either believe or discount global climate change, but I've yet to see anybody advocate for it. Who will take up the banner for rising oceans, ancestral virus outbreaks and massive crop failure?

38. Similarly, people either believe in or discount dire news of peak oil production, but no one's willing to stand up and speak in favour of it. Outrageous gas prices! Food shortages! World War III! The end of the industrial world! Who's with me on this one?

39. Oh sure, there's biodiesel, but I bet it's gross.

40. Themes enumerated in this installment of my 100 list include: all things uncanny, South Dakota, secular apocalypse. Law and Order. Oil.