Dark things have a purpose

This is a true story.

I walk Orson several times a day. His afternoon walk happens when I get home from work.

Today I didn’t change my clothes. I was wearing a black dress shirt and faded black jeans. I have black hair, and recently regrew my 90’s goatee which, for the 21st century, sports some gray. My skin is pale and my eyes are sunken from the last two or three years of sheer hell. I’ve lost lots of weight and my clothes (I haven’t bought any new ones in three years) all hang on me.

That was how I looked.

As I was walking Orson by the park, an older woman parked her car and got out. As she passed me, she smiled and said, “Dark things have purpose.” Then she walked on.

I’m not making that up. That’s what she said.

Dark things have purpose.

Usually, the purpose of dark things is to destroy or be destroyed. Usually, the purpose of dark things is to make the bright things look better, and justify what bright things are and do.

I live in the land of bright things. Beautiful things. I’ve always been aware I wasn’t part of them. I’ve always been aware that Hollywood is about youth and power and sex and beauty and money, and I’m not permitted in any of those parties, not anymore. If you don’t have one or more of those things, you are not welcome.

I’m a dark thing. The bright things should get down on their knees and thank their gods that there are dark things like me to justify their existence.

Then Orson pooped out a dark thing of his own, and since there was a cop nearby, I made sure I picked it up. City ordinance.

Dark things have a purpose.

Way to go, Rachel!

MSNBC makes a smart move — Rachel Maddow is getting her own show.

Beginning September 8, she’ll take over the spot currently held by Dan Abrams’ “Verdict” which immediately follows Keith Olbermann. Keith spilled the news today in his Daily Kos diary.

She’s the host of a radio show on Air America, a frequent commentator on MSNBC shows (usually putting Pat Buchanan in his place), and was apparently the regular guest host whenever Keith took a vacation.

It’s not known yet whether Rachel will continue hosting the Air America radio show. [UPDATE: Rachel announced on Countdown that she will continue hosting the radio show.]

The Washington Post notes that she “may also be the first openly gay woman to host a prime-time program.”

Mailbox warning

Spam campaigns target msnbc.com, CNN

Spammers have upped the ante in their efforts to trick news consumers, switching from e-mails with tabloid-style headlines to impersonating major online news services. On Wednesday, e-mails that appeared to be from msnbc.com landed in inboxes worldwide, promising breaking news and confusing some recipients.

The spam unleashed Wednesday follows a massive campaign last week in which spammers impersonated CNN.com. That campaign saw 250 million spam messages sent in one intense 24 hour period, according to spam-fighting firm MX Logic Inc. Those e-mails appeared to include links to CNN’s top 10 stories, but Internet users who were tricked into clicking on those links were sent instead to Web sites overseas that were booby-trapped with malicious software.

Recipients should immediately delete any unexpected e-mails purportedly from CNN, msnbc.com or any other firm that they haven’t done business with and authorized to contact them.

Users who open the fake CNN or msnbc.com e-mails and click on a link are in for a bad day if they fall for the ruse. Those who do are sent to Web sites that attempt to trick them into downloading what is described as a video player plug-in. Instead, the malicious software will infect the user’s computer, ultimately giving hackers complete control over the machine. Infected computers are then used to send out even more spam.