December 31st, 2022
New Year’s, Venice.
La Kid recorded this, with her feet dangling from a bridge over the Grand Canal.
December 31st, 2022
Such a too much of a gift.

From New Year’s Song, by Ted Hughes


… Now there come the weak-neck snowdrops

bouncing like fountains and they stop you

they make you take a deep breath

make your heart shake you

such a too much of a gift for such a mean time

nobody knows how to accept them

all you can do is gaze at them baffled

and the worst cold’s to come

December 31st, 2022
America’s Sickest University Football Coach…

… and that’s saying a lot – has yet another nationally broadcast meltdown. Drink and violence and litigiousness have long been Steve Sarkisian’s (scroll down) game plan, and the resulting embarrassing spectacles in front of trustees, obscene actings-out in the larger community, and, in this latest instance, psychotic attacks on team staff, have totally endeared him to the nation’s premier football programs. He pulls in a huge salary and is massively lionized at one dominant program after another.

He hasn’t yet started pulling out a gun during his special moments (This is How We Do It), but once he does that, he’ll be guaranteed the head coaching spot at the school of his choice.


The world of university football/basketball coaches is mainly a variant of Trumpworld. Everyone loves the athletic Trumplets’ sick dirty twisted lying ways, and when the sickest and dirtiest die, the, uh, what’s the word, encomia are enmazing! You’d never know from American sports journalism that Bobby Knight or Mike Leach (one of America’s most fanatic Trumpers) was anything other than a fine inspirational example to us all when his sadistic treatment of players comes to a permanent end. And so it is with another manifestly insane person, Steve S.

Of course a few sissy nay-sayers are calling for him to be fired. They seem worried that the school he rules – Texas, Austin – may suffer reputational damage through having made a gibbering lunatic the highest-profile, highest-compensated person on campus.

To which UD says: Fiddle dee dee! It’s Texas, sweetie!

December 30th, 2022
Dude looks too old to be a disgruntled boyfriend…

… and therefore a popular early theory about the U Idaho students knifed to death in their beds seems plausible: It was a random ugly encounter, during a night of barhopping, with someone who turned out to be a vicious asshole, who followed them home and killed them.

PhD student, criminology, Washington State University.

December 29th, 2022
Democracy Watch: Vermeule and Co.

Whether common good constitutionalism supplants originalism remains to be seen. But the idea that it can impose the society it wants through its own interpretation of “the common good” is a sign of just how far the right has moved toward authoritarianism

December 29th, 2022
Mr UD enters Venice.

That’s his bald head. Video taken by La Kid. UD stayed home with bronchitis.

December 29th, 2022
Sarah Vaughan Sings the George Santos Song

Be Anything.

December 28th, 2022
See, this is why ol’ UD keeps calling Trump a suicide risk.

Trump’s [current] struggle is simple because he is simple: All he is is appetite – for fame, power, sex, admiration – shorn of any interior life and unencumbered by exterior attachments.

More here. And here. And here.

I mean. You know. Sing it.

She’s come undone
She didn’t know what she was headed for
And when I found what she was headed for
It was too late

December 27th, 2022
‘Major College Football Program Accused of Cheating’

NO. Oh dear God, NOOOOOooooooo….

December 27th, 2022
Lake of Kari:  After Wordsworth

Like a breeze,
Or sunbeam, over your archive I passed
To a sanctions motion without pause; for ye have left
Your screenshot with me, an insane accord
Of paranoias - massive, and endowed
In their mad viciousness with power as will allow
A gracious, almost might I dare to say,
Virtuous, and profitable, victory.
December 27th, 2022
Louisa May…


December 27th, 2022
‘[President] Ottow said that part of the solution might be to add context to the image…’

A tumultuous to-do rages at Leiden University over a painting depicting six male former trustees huddled together smoking cigars. A few weeks ago, one wag – a professor attending a meeting in the faculty conference room where the whimsical, perhaps somewhat annoying, portrait hangs – suddenly got up and turned it around on the wall. Everyone in the room had a good laugh … and … cut!

But … no cigar. Anti-cancel-culturists called the joke a vicious gesture, while anti-puffing-patriarch forces said hey good idea bury the fuckers.

And so it as Kurt Vonnegut put it goes.

The president of the university (see my headline) decided the whole thing was a fine community-discussion opportunity plus let’s put it in context.

UD has a suggestion about the latter, which is why not hang a counterfactual in the same room depicting abstemious female trustees in a quilting circle.


UPDATE: A different version, with hilarious faculty comments.

December 26th, 2022
From Eliot’s The Trump Land

Monsieur Sostrumpis, famous clairvoyant,

Has a mad mind, nevertheless

Is known to be the wisest man in Mar-A-Lago

With a wicked head of hair.  Here, said he,

Are your votes, the stolen eleven thousand.

(Those are nays that were my ayes. Look!)

Here is Giuliani, the Lady on the Rocks,

The lady of situations.

Here is the man with many pillows, and here the Stone,

And here is dead-eyed Bannon, and this card,

Which is classified, is something I carried to Mar-A-Lago

Which I am forbidden to do. I do not find

My favorite daughter. Fear death by treason.

December 25th, 2022


I wander the verse of my betters

Nihilistic priests heartbroken lesbians

Alcoholics from Knoxville and points south

I ask each of them to put their words in my mouth


Brilliant depressives of letters

Nihilistic post-soviet chain-smokers

You run smoke-circles around me when I try

Keeping up with you on the streets around Gansevoort


I wander the streets around Gansevoort 

The meat packers, the High Line, the Whitney

In the same metaphysical melancholy

The same muddled melancholy…  I mean 

Muddled up with so much and yet sayable.

Or at least you say it.  Give me your words and let me say it.

December 25th, 2022
Next up, kill ’em all.

Taliban Use Water Cannon

On Women Protesting Education Order

in Afghanistan

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