I picked a terrible time to focus on songwriting and neglect my duties here at RATYHTL, as the last two weeks have been packed solid with fascinating news: Pat Robertson blamed the Haitian earthquake on voodoo, whereas Danny Glover blamed it on Global Warming; James O'Keefe, the man behind the ACORN videos, was caught tampering with a Senator's phone, and a plane was forced to land at Philly International because the passengers had never seen a Jew before [OK, that's an oversimplification, but it looks good in print]. Oh, and there may or may not have been a cover-up of three murders at Gitmo.
But, for me at least, the most interesting piece of news to surface over the last few weeks was the arrest of one Charles Dyer for child rape and sodomy.
Dyer, a twenty-nine-year-old former Marine Sargent who lives in Oklahoma, had appeared in a number of videos on YouTube using the handle "July4Patriot": often openly referring to himself as a terrorist. Here's one Dyer's more interesting rants:
Dyer was also one of the founding members of a group called Oath keepers (Did they mean "oaf keepers"?) and spoke at several Tea Party events. As mentioned above, Dyer was arrested a couple of weeks ago for raping a seven-year-old girl. Which is twisted enough, but the icing on the obviously vanilla cake is that when the police raided Dyer's no doubt tastefully decorated home they found a 40-millimeter grenade launcher, which was apparently stolen from Fort Irwin, although Dyer claims it was "a gift from a friend" (and all I ever get are ties).
It was with Dyer's arrest that his Teabaggin' buddies shifted into high gear, reportedly threatening the Sheriff who arrested Dyer as well as anyone who reports on the story [Come and get me, you pansies!]
I will say one positive thing about Mr. (soon to be "Ms.", if those stories I've heard about what goes on in prison are true) Dyer; he vicariously managed to reacquaint me with a word I'd long forgotten. I was discussing the Dyer case with a friend who said, "You know what they out to do to that guy?", and - before my friend could offer up the punishment he had in mind - I blurted out a word I hand not used, or even thought about, for that matter, in many years: Rhaphanidosis!
Rhaphanidosis was the punishment in ancient Greece for adultery. Basically, it involved hammering a radish (which used to be ...um... larger and pointier than the ones we're used to seeing) up the accused adulterer's backside. It's where we get the sadly too seldom used verb raphanizein - meaning "to insert a radish into the fundament" - from. Come to think of it, the word fundament doesn't get used often enough either.