Post-holiday news bloat

There are definitely advantages to living in a semi-booming metropolis. One of those advantages is news stories such as this one.

From the Chicago Tribune:

Crossdressing muggers charged in Lincoln Park assaults

There’s nothing wrong with your reading skills, you read that correctly: Dudes who look like ladies are swiping the personal belongings off of unsuspecting folks as they stroll through one of the hoitier ‘hoods of Chicago.

Read on…

“Two men dressed as women were charged with mugging a teenage girl Friday as she walked near Lincoln Park Zoo, only minutes after they allegedly assaulted another pedestrian and tried to take his wallet, prosecutors said.

Brandon Arnold, 24, of the 6800 block of South Aberdeen Street, and roommate Michael Burns, 21, appeared in Cook County Central Bond Court charged with robbery and attempted armed robbery, both sporting long, styled hair and gray leggings. Their bond was set at $100,000 each.”

My, what handsome ladies.

Gray leggings? I do hope they were wearing long enough tops to cover their man bits because the only place I want to see a dude wearing leggings is if he’s channelling his inner-Balanchine by mincing and prancing about on stage with the Joffrey Ballet. If that’s not the scenario, then it’s time learn about, love and wear a codpiece. Or, better yet, be a man and go get your pud snipped off by a professional.

Continue, please.

“Court records say the pair approached a 16-year-old girl as she walked past an alley in the 2300 block of North Lincoln Park West around 2:24 p.m.

Arnold asked the girl for directions, then raised a can of pepper spray and said, “Give me your camera or I’ll mace you.” The girl gave up her camera, then Arnold allegedly demanded the girl’s iPhone and ran off with Brandon down Fullerton Avenue.

Five minutes earlier, prosecutors said Arnold and Burns had attacked a man about half a mile away in the 2600 block of North Cannon Drive.”

I know this area well since I used to live a bit north of the crime scenes. Crossdressers are not an unusual sight at all.

“Five minutes earlier, prosecutors said Arnold and Burns had attacked a man about half a mile away in the 2600 block of North Cannon Drive.

The victim said one of the men grabbed him from behind and tried to take his wallet, but the man was able to wrestle free.”

Maybe he busted one of the alleged mugger’s sculpted nails.

” ‘When I turned around, one was holding the can of mace, but it must have jammed or it didn’t work,” the victim said.

 The man took off running with Arnold and Burns giving chase. The two alleged muggers gave up as the victim outran them. When he had enough distance from this attackers, the man called police on his cell phone.

The teenage victim was following her attackers down Fullerton when a squad car responding to the first victim’s call arrived. Burns and Arnold dropped the phone and camera in some bushes, then dropped the can of pepper spray, court records said.

“It wasn’t funny at all,” the male victim said Saturday. “These guys attacked two people, minutes apart, in broad daylight in the park.’ “

Okayokayokay — it isn’t funny — a teenager got mugged. Well the truth is,  it is kinda funny. I did laugh and so did you. I mean, really, crossdressing muggers are the new black in my book. I give them huge credit for wearing leggings in public and for daring to wear titty-pink lipstick north of the Mason-Dixon. But, mugging during the day in a popular area? Fucking dumbasses.

I must admit, however, I do like the hairdo of the one on the bottom.

The tour continues below.

It’s safe to say that McCrabass is a huge, news junkie. I read everything. I have a voracious appetite for information — especially the weird. Below, we have the apex of strange.

Courtesy of the Guardian.

Reborns: dolls so lifelike you could mistake them for real infants

Sidenote: Dolls in general really make me uneasy. They’re up there with mimes, clowns and contortionists. Mimes because the whole ‘trapped in a box’ bit makes me want to pick the boxed-mime up and toss him over a bridge into the icy water below, then watch him mime for help. Clowns equal evil — ’nuff said. As for contortionists, I need a little bit more space between the sun and the moon if you catch my drift.

Now, reborns? They’re dolls that look and sorta feel like real babies. However, some people treat them like real babies by dressing them up in real baby clothes, cooing at them with real cooing sounds and trot them out in public as if they were real babies.

According to photographer Rebecca Martinez, these dolls have a real place in real society.

Read. (I edited it a bit because after reading this, it’s obvious the Guardian doesn’t employ editors.)

” ‘If I go out and I hold this doll in any way other than you would a real baby, people get mad. I cannot just hold it casually, like by one arm or whatever, because people will go, ‘It’s not right, you can’t do that.’ They go crazy. Even though the rational self knows it’s a doll.’ “

Before I continue, I must disclose that McCrabass does not have children. I like kids, but I never felt the need to breed. Not selfish, not physically incapable, I just never wanted kids. Kids are great, but not great enough for McCrabass. Plus, I would be the worst mom — I could never curb my salty language and fart jokes. Plus, I’d let them eat anything they wanted, so it’s for the betterment of society that McCrabass only has cats.

I get the idea of using one of these reborns to temporarily help a parent get over the loss of a child, or as a teaching tool. But, to cart the fake wee bairn around as if it’s a real live breathing, eating, screaming and crapping baby is a titch too much even for open-minded me.

Continue …

“Martinez is full of stories about the way people react to a Reborn doll – the people who get freaked out and won’t touch them, the people who seem to feel neutral towards them and yet start rocking them as if they were real, the men who play pranks with them. But before we consider the reactions of bystanders, the experiences of people who make and buy them are fascinating.

Claire Hughes and Min Li, two UK-based Reborn creators, are very upbeat and straightforward that this is an act of craft, with a burgeoning and busy market. Hughes remarks on the power of the dolls, but the vignettes she describes seem to underscore the fact that it’s illusory: “My mum works in a care home with old people. If I take one of the dolls in, they love it. They think it’s real, it calms them right down. The manager can’t even look at them.” She likens it to eccentric male hobbies – playing with train sets, or sitting for three hours by a riverbank, waiting to catch a fish.”

Playing with TOY trains is considered an eccentric male hobby? I’m gonna need a judge’s ruling on that claim.

“Martinez has observed the reactions these dolls get in many different scenarios, with friends and strangers, in different countries and cultures. “People say they want to hold the baby, then they get surprised, because the baby is made to feel as real as possible. Often, they’ll start rocking the baby and cooing at it. And they’ll realise what they’re doing and they’ll get embarrassed. They know on one level it’s not real, and sometimes they’re ashamed that they feel like that, that they’ve been fooled. It’s something very deep and biological in people, something instinctive we have, that they’re automatically comforting their baby. Some people are just delighted; they’ll kiss the baby and not want to give it back. One time I had a man and he grabbed it and his body just tensed up, and he threw it on the ground. And I was upset, I said, ‘Hey, that’s a very expensive item, how dare you do that?’ And he was so into what he was doing, he was so stiff, he wouldn’t move for several minutes. He was trembling.”

Cooing at a doll? Seriously? Not wanting to give it back? Kissing it? Are these people fuckin’ half-wits or what?

“Duh… tell me about the rabbits, George.”

Perhaps most of these folks are hoping these dolls will grow up to be one of these.

No wonder this world is in the shitter.

However, PSAs such as this one give me hope that society is sliding down Crap Mountain at a glacial pace rather than at high speed:

6 thoughts on “Post-holiday news bloat

  1. I watched a show on the re-borns and it was really creepy but the babies truly do look real. I can see bystanders reacted badly to seeing someone look like they are mistreating a baby if someone is holding one by the head like a doll, but then again, its an odd person to take one out of the house. In a completely dispassionate way, I can see collecting them like people collect anything but bringing them out is weird. Don’t ask why I lost an hour of my life watching the TLC special… that channel has mind control powers.

  2. Shame when those of us without kids have to anticipate the “selfish” charge. I’ll choose to simply smile ruefully rather than rant.

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