Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Panty Check!

The problem with fighting terrorists is that you are always one step behind. These guys have really shown themselves to be rather imaginative.
And our responses don't always make sense.

After 9-11, we had The Shoe Bomber, who tried to blow up his shoes with matches.So what did we do? To make sure nothing like this happens again, we started checking everybody's shoes (makes sense), and banning cigarette lighters. But, we were allowed to bring matches aboard the plane.
No sense to me.

The latest, we have The Panty Bomber. And our response: nobody can leave their seats, go to the head, or read a book... for one hour. Huh?
And to make sure nobody is wearing loaded panties, all baggage will be super-extreme double checked. Twice.

Wouldn't it just make more sense to have all passengers fly commando? Maybe they can wear a Department of Homeland Security approved pull-up, (to be issued after security frisking, of course).

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Brothers

Brothers is the story of a decorated marine who is sent on another deployment to Afghanistan, leaving his wife and two young daughters behind. After being shot down and taken captive, his family is notified of his death.

The Marine's misfit younger brother, recently paroled, gets his act together and becomes an anchor for his brother's family, and grows emotionally close to the wife.

The Marine is rescued, and fraught with guilt over some atrocity he committed, creates a hell for everybody he comes into contact with.

Supposedly, this is a remake/adaptation of a Dutch film from a few years ago. I can't speak for the original, but this here version is lacking. Though the actors do a decent job with their characters, the characters themselves are rather two dimensional. Instead of showing any depth, they are presented as caricatures.
The exception being the role played by the always beautiful Natalie Portman; the wife, aptly named Grace.

Add a plot with enough holes to hide a Taliban army, and you've got yourself a loser of a film.

My advice: don't even Netflix this turkey.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Everything that I need I take care of throughout the year, as the needs arise. Anything that I want I already have, or soon will have, without using a credit card. It is for these reasons that I never could understand the psychotic desire some people have to go shopping the day after Christmas.

So,let's see... if I was like everybody else, anything that I run out and purchase today will be just stuff that I don't need, or want... purchased solely for the reason of 'saving money' because it was on sale.

And I'd end up on December 27th, with less money, more shit, and fewer places to put it so I'll eventually end up trashing it anyway.
Trashing something that I wasted time and gas money on, just because it was a few bucks cheaper than it was last week. Something that I didn't even want in the first place, or I'd have it already.


Maybe I'm just too simple in my mindset.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Like George Wallace At The A.M.E.

Aproaching the kitty section, I notice a crowd of folks creating some sort of silly commotion. Within seconds, I notice there is something like 8-10 dogs tethered to fixtures.
A good start, I thought.
But why do dog obedience classes in the kitty area?
Such is not the proper way of the world of Petsmart. Kitty stuff is always on one side of the store, with the hinterlands reserved for those lesser beasts of disdain.

Grabbing my bag of kitty food, I am suddenly approached by some dufus:
"Sir, will you pet my dog?"
Huh?
"It's part of his training to not jump when he's excited"
awright, I muffled.

Summoning my inner St. Francis, I reached out and briefly patted the head of his beast.
"Will you give him a treat"
I just did.
"Here, give him this", as he hands me a dog biscuit.
Then the damn thing licked my hand as I gave it's reward.

Feeling violated, I make a break for the register, only to be accosted yet again by another dufus holding a rope with a dog at the end of it.
And it wasn't over...
One by one, they lined up to greet me: dufus' and dogs... one after another...

I must have petted eight happy, tail wagging dogs before I was able to make my escape.

I feel so dirty.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Frog Was Placed In The Pot Long Ago

Clearly, many of you are really upset over this Health Care Plan thing. I won't comment on it because I honestly can not.
And neither can anybody out there who thinks they can.

Who has read the thing?
So, how can you comment on something nobody else anywhere has even read, and act as if you know what the hell you're talking about?

You can't, if you want to be honest about it.
All I know is that those who have been selling it to us have been speaking out both sides of their asses for nine-plus months, and they aren't going to stop any time soon.

Once it passes into law, then the real sausage will me be made as implementation begins. We won't have a clue about that either, except for what the opposition wants to tell us. And that will likely be just as suspect as the lofty rhetoric we will get from the those in charge.

I am, for the most part, resigned to the idea that socialised medicine will become reality in this country. It is the way of modern civilized societies.
Nothing can stop it.
It will happen, along with a host of other bigger socialistic schemes that the smart people can dream up for us.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Would You Eat This?

Malaysian authorities rescue 130 pangolins
Malaysian wildlife authorities said they have rescued 130 pangolins and arrested two men attempting to smuggle the protected species, destined to be sold to restaurants and medicine shops....

The animal's meat is considered a delicacy in China...

According to Wiki, this is some sort of anteater type creature. Never heard of them before, and they don't look very tastey to me?

According to the article, 130 Pangolins are valued at about $11,500. Or about $88 a peice.
Another citation (per Wiki) reports five tons of seized Pangolin meat representing 1,481 Pangolins.

So, doing a little math, I can assume about 6.75 lbs of meat can be produced from an average Pangolin at a market price of $13/lb.

I think I'd rather have a nice rib eye.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Shred's Dictionary

Evolution: -noun. When some of the same debating points you once used are now annoyingly shallow when spewed from another.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Why He Matters

Like every other American kid, there were a few years when I played in Little League. Actually, I mostly sucked in Little League, but what was almost as important as my lack of performance was the gear I used.

Think back: mid-70's. Who was 'It'? If you guessed Hank Aaron, you're right. Lou Brock, too. Naturally, being the kid, the only kid whose folks sprung the big money, who had a "Hank Aaron" authorized mitt, I was reasonably, if briefly, cool on Day One. (As my suckage become ever increasingly evident, the coolness wore off, but it was good while it lasted.)

Even more popular, because more kids had them, were Puma baseball cleats. Lou Brock wore Puma. As did a some of our Dodgers. Puma advertised these things in some sports/baseball mag we used to read. "Lou Brock wears Puma Paws. You should,too", or something along those lines.

These things mattered to 10 year olds. Eventually, we mostly outgrew such blatant huckstering, but still, maybe not most consumers, but enough of them anyway, still fall for the bullshit.
Sometimes it's blatant: Tiger Woods tells us about his razor choice.
Other times, more subtle: Tiger Woods always wears Nike brand golf apparel,and lets the camera do the talking.

Over the course of his career, something like 12yrs or more, Tiger Woods has earned hundreds of millions just through his endorsement deals. Razors. Cars. Sport drinks. Clothing... Breakfast cereal. On and on...
Not to mention what his popularity has done for the world of golf, both financially (frickin' huge), and culturally.

Tiger Woods personae has created product lines where there weren't any (Gatorade), and made viable others(Nike Golf).
His name was a gold mine that kept paying off.
It's all because Tiger was a nice guy, well mannered, with decent morals, and a good family man.
And it is because of this perception, now shown to be at least partly false, that billions and billions of consumer dollars have flowed one way instead of another.

This is why Tiger matters.
Why his infidelties matter.
Why it is, at the very least, newsworthy.

And now it is, for the foreseeable future anyway, over in the crash of an SUV.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

My Take On Tiger

I think when you make hundreds of millions selling yourself to the public as an upright, family-centered kinda man you deserve the media harassment that follows after it is made public that you are really just another egotistical jackass cheating on his family with a string of sluts, whores and porn stars.

Privacy? Forget it, dude. You blew that.

But what really annoys me in all of this most annoying of tabloid news stories are the constant references to the world's most recognisable adulterer as The World's Most Marketable Athlete.

Athlete? You kidding me?
Athletes run around and jump a lot, and compete by running and jumping against other people who run around and jump a lot.
Brian Urlacher is an athlete. So are Devin Hester, Kyle Orton, and even Jay Cutler, who's been doing a lot of running lately.

Tiger Woods is a golfer. He walks around with a stick, knocking balls into pre-cut holes on a green surface.
Kinda like billiards, but with fresh air.

Nobody would say Minnesota Fats was an athlete.
And I won't say Tiger Woods is either.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Seems this blog has seen more dick than Marilyn Chambers.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Because Sometimes I Repeat Myself

Ohio inmate to get 1-drug, slower, execution
Condemned killer Kenneth Biros could become the first person in the country put to death with a single dose of an intravenous anesthetic instead of the usual - and faster-acting - three-drug process if his execution proceeds Tuesday.

Why don't they just do the job quicker and easier with a single injection of lead to the back of the head?

I wanted to say something, but I already said it before, so I'll just re-post from a previous incarnation. It's only slightly dated, but since we seem to be on a hamster wheel within the courts in regards to this issue, it's almost timeless, and will likely still be relevant when my great-grandson posts on his own blog someday.

(with a few grammatical alterations)
------------------------------------------------------

It keeps happening:

Gov. Jeb Bush suspended all executions in Florida after a medical examiner said Friday that prison officials botched the insertion of the needles when a convicted killer was put to death earlier this week.

Good for Jeb. I'm glad he did it. But I would hardly use the word "botched" while describing a planned execution that resulted in death. But maybe that's just me.

And from the once Golden State:

Separately, a federal judge in California imposed a moratorium on executions in the nation's most populous state, declaring that the state's method of lethal injection runs the risk of violating the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
Honest people can disagree over the method of putting somebody peacefully to sleep through lethal injection as being 'cruel' or not, but in California,with well over 600 prisoners(i think its nearly 1000 now,but not sure, and I'm too lazy to look it up), about 2-3 executions in a productive year(usually, it's less than one), and the average length of time on Death Row something like 25+yrs and growing, it certainly is unusual.


It seems to me, the more we try to out think the collective wisdom of the ages through complication of the simple, something goes wrong. In an attempt to render death as nicely as possible, we end up rendering very little death through the most torturously complicated of procedures.

Tell me. What is so goddamned difficult about placing a single bullet through the back of somebody's head? That's the way it was done for hundreds of years, is still being done by other 'less wiser'(?) nations, and works effectively each and every time. It's quick. Relatively clean. Cost effective. And measurably painless.

Yeah, I know... the bleeding hearts and lefties will bemoan the brutality and bloodiness of it all, but if they can find it in themselves to defend the procedure of piercing a baby's skull and sucking out it's brains, given time, I'm sure they'll eventually come around to acceptance.

To be honest about the issue, I oppose capital punishment, but not for the reasons usually cited by others.
I do not think it is cruel.
I do not think it is unconstitutional.
And for some crimes, I can think of no other more fitting level of sanction.
But in a fallible system, operated by fallible humans, where the wealthy, the connected, the sympathetic, and the famous tend to receive a more favorable level of justice than the rest of us; where 'equal protection under the law' is a promise without a guarantee, some things are just too final to be policy.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Just An Uptick That Won't Last

Americans turning more isolationist, poll finds
At the very moment President Obama is looking to thrust the United States ever more into global affairs, the American public is turning more isolationist and unilateralist than it has at any time in decades, a survey released yesterday said.
The Pew Research Center poll found that a plurality of Americans - 49 percent - think the United States should "mind its own business internationally" and leave it to other countries to fend for themselves.

It was the first time in more than 40 years of polling, Pew said, that the ranks of Americans with isolationist sentiment outnumbered those with a more international outlook.

First off, I want to correct a thing or two with article. This writer is using biased language. And any report based upon biased language can't be an even handed one.

The correct term is "Non-intervention", not "Isolation". For those of us who really do support a non-interventionist approach, isolation is the last thing on our mind.
The term "Isolationist" is really an epithet, coined by Alfred Mahan, an American imperialist who was also an advisor to one our most imperialistic presidents: Theodore Roosevelt.

The American imperialist just couldn't keep his mind off of other nation's business, and kinda liked the idea of kicking weaker nations around just because they could. The Spanish-American war was a prime example, and not one of America's finest achievements.

In contrast, the writer refers to the "Interventionist" mindset as "Internationalist". Sounds grandiose, don't it? (Hey, I'm an internationalist.) To me, that's almost like equating slavers to labor organisers. It's only a positive until you look into the details.

It doesn't matter who you voted for, you are still supporting an interventionist mindset. Both sides in this country do it while they cater to their interest groups or are just engaging in hubris.

I primarily consider myself a non-interventionist. Other nations troubles should remain their own troubles, and not our own. But it eventually happens every time we involve ourselves where we don't belong: it comes back to bite us in the ass in both money and blood.

Interventionism became the path of no return that led to the Spanish-American War, and every war since then. It has cost us gazillions of dollars that could have been better spent on more domestic pursuits. It has cost is still costing us the lives of hundreds of thousands of our young men; sons, fathers, and brothers and the heartache that goes with.
And it has cost us the little day to day freedoms we should be taking for granted, like the ability to board an airplane without submitting to a cavity search.
Personally, I don't think it's been worth it. And maybe, though I hold out little hope, enough of my people will see it this way as well, and some sanity just might prevail for a while.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

What I Think:

Instead of a "War On Terrorism", why don't we just declare war directly on Al Quiada and then go balls out, burning villages and napalming mountainsides til nothing is left.

A superpower can beat cave dwellers if we put aside the failed, and historically recent, notions of humanitarianism and just do it old school.

Must See

Go here and travel back in time to see what inspiration, research, creativity, and an anal approach to detail can do for your holiday spirits.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Facebook: -noun. a place where people who haven't mattered to you for 25 years suddenly think they should.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Two Degrees Of Separation

Spent the early part of the evening at Joe's Crab Shack. "Joe's" is a fairly popular national chain specializing in (what else?) crab, served in a weather-worn beach shack kinda motif.

I've never been there, and a work buddy suggested we check the place out to celebrate my expanding abilities to feed myself. He'd never been there,either. And as a small-town Midwestern jock who still indulges in typical, hearty-style eating habits, he was rather moved by my plight, took it to heart, and was waiting... waiting... for this day to party a bit and just celebrate life for a while.


We started off with a round of Landsharks, on tap. Not a great beer, it's basically Anheuser-Busch's knock off of Corona: marketed as a summer-time-at-the-beach, quench your thirst, light bodied lager. Much like Corona in many ways, but without that skunk piss smell and after taste. I've never liked Corona. But I like Landshark when served in it's proper context. Add a slice of lime, better still.
It was a perfect fit: a mild, smooth taste; slightly sweet with little noticeable hoppiness. It didn't overpower the subtle flavors of the crab and shrimp, and complimented rather well.

Appetizers: Crab Stuffed Mushrooms were mushrooms, filled with crab and topped with jack cheese. Creamy and cheesy, these were yum.

The Calamari, on the other hand, sucked ass. Worst. Ever.
Calamari, done proper, is suppose to be lightly breaded, crisp and chewy. These were like beer-battered, or something. Crunchy. Crunchy is not the same as crispy. The batter over powered the calamari so strongly that all I could taste was the thick,crunchy stuff. The calamari itself, for all intents and purposes, may as well not have been there at all. That is, if it was actually there. I couldn't tell, and I'm not convinced that it was. I should have sent it back. Next time.

Another round of Landsharks...
leads to another...

I ordered the Joe's Classic Steam Pot: a cluster each of Snow and Dungeness Crabs, half dozen large shrimp, smoked sausage, cob corn, spuds... all steamed together with garlic and Old Bay seasoning. Tasty. The crab was meaty and tender. And everything else was cooked just right.
Not a lot of food. But at around $22 for a good crab dinner, I left satisfied that I got my money's worth. A full belly, but not painfully so.

Overall, a satisfying and entertaining dining experience. We took our two-man party out on the patio. (In Orange County, late November, we can do this.)
We talked a little football, and bagged on Tiger Woods getting beat on by his old lady(nyah,nyah).

Oh, and the separation:
One of these jovial fellas was a student of Lovie's back in the early 80's, when he was coaching linebackers at the University of Tulsa.

Because...




...no matter how hot she looks, there is somebody else who is tired of putting up with her shit.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Gino's Turkey Leftover Recipe


First: Remove all the crispy, tasty skin from the turkey carcass, and eat it.

Second: You cut up some leftover breast meat into small chunks(dark meat works,too). Place the meat on a small paper plate and drizzle generously with leftover gravy.

Next: Cut up some more turkey, this time in larger chunks, and place on a larger paper plate.

Place the smaller plate of diced turkey in front of the cat, while simultaneously placing the larger plate before the dog. If your dog is tied-up, caged, or suitably restrained in another manner, as all dogs should be, you can skip the 'simultaneously' part.
Or, better still, just shoot the damn dog, and forget you ever had one.

If your cat wants more, give it to her. With gravy.

Place the remaining turkey leftovers in a plastic bag and then throw the bag into the trash.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

This talk about Obama dragging his feet at The Brass's request for more troops to fight in Afghanistan has left me somewhat perplexed.

I believe that when you send troops into a hostile environment, you are also morally obligated to provide them with all the means at your disposal to ensure as much men and equipment as they need, erroring on the side of excess.

So, I don't know what all the foot dragging going on is for. The bullshit excuse that Obama needs time to assess the situation before making a decision is just that: Bullshit!
There's no way that The President, with his dire lack of military and war knowledge, is in any way capable of making such an assessment. What he would do, if he's smart (and he's proven such is not the case), is assemble his war council and listen to them. They would, of course and most likely, defer to The Brass in the field who have the first hand knowledge of the situation as it currently sits.

Nope. Instead, I suspect he's assembling his political council, trying to find out how to have it both ways.

In the meantime, every soldier who gets killed will have a family who can conceivably blame that death on the lack of personnel nobody seems to disagree exists.
Once again, not very smart on the part of the Boy Wonder president.

I do have some skin in this game, as my brother is currently still deployed to the region. I would hate for something awful to happen to him. I would also be hard pressed not to blame the President for playing politics with his life when reinforcements for requested.

Obama needs to either begin a pullout from the war, or declare that he's in it to win it, and then actually tell us, in clear language (I know, that's difficult for him), just what "win it" means.
Because I don't think anybody really knows.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Here It Is



For those of you who do not know me on facebook.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

He's Mine!

And my season is over three days earlier than planned.
9 points, with a huge 23" inside spread. He's the biggest buck I've ever taken, and will look impressive on my wall.

And I've changed my mind about retirement. I just can't do it.

Pic will be posted when I return.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Found...

On the property in Georgia. Seems the trail cam has only caught him at night, meaning he only comes out at night, as well.



The rut is beginning, and hopefully, he will forget those nocturnalisms and chase something directly in my shooting path.


If I tag this one, I will retire from deer hunting.
Forever.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Why Is He Smiling?


Lou Dobbs leaving CNN for 'new opportunities'


Dollars to donuts, he ends up at Fox.
All the real talent ends up at Fox after leaving these other cable networks.

And the prospect of working while surrounded by hotter looking women would make any old dude smile.

Tracy Speaks


Go read it. And then tell him how cool he is.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Critters Is Critters

Two bloggers offered up these comments is my "zoo" posting:
...I am in the middle of ethical/moral quandaries about keeping animals in display facilities...
...my ethical boundaries about keeping highly intelligent animals in captivity...

I'm not calling them out, just pointing something out for the sake of discussion where they and I may not be seeing eye to eye.

I'm not sure what the measured intelligence level of a bonobo is, but if it's less than that of a six-year old, and such a level would be deemed quite high for an animal, then I don't get what the big deal is about keeping them captive.

We don't let our six-year olds run free, to live as they choose without limitations, do we? No, we don't, and there's nothing wrong with that. We keep our children captive, of course, and for good reason.
And these captive six year olds don't seem to be any worse for wear as a result of it, either.
And same goes for my cat (and the dog I refuse claim ownership of).

I believe that any critter, large or small, kept in appropriate captivity suffers from nothing. They are not like us.
These are still animals. A lower life form. If left to their own devices they will continue to do what they have always done: crap where they want, lay in that crap, enjoy the smell, and even eat,breed and raise their young right there, within nose shot of their last crap...

And if you find what animal researchers consider to be a smart one, 'smart' meaning: able to grab a stick and knock fruit out of a tree, or something else equally inane... keep in mind, if that fruit lands in their crap, they will still eat it.

Captivity, with room to do what they like to do (such as: drop crap where ever they feel like), does them no harm.
And the steady food supply we offer is probably a net benefit.
Therefore, I see no ethical quandaries. None.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

IHOP

When I bought this house last summer, the presence of an International House Of Pancakes just down the road, though not a deciding factor, was definately accepted as a added bonus.
Though IHOP has been one of my favorite places to eat for years, I've yet to venture into their dinner/lunch menu. It's all about breakfast for me. Specifically, the pancakes.
Any time of day, though I'm rarly found inside of one during the morning hours. I prefer the less crowded dinner time hours.
That's right: breakfast for dinner. What's wrong with it?

It's hard to screw up eggs and hashbrowns, though some places do manage it. But IHOP can be counted on to do a pretty reliable of job of not screwing up eggs and hashbrowns.

Their signature item, pancakes, though not All That on their own, are fully capable of being dressed up. And this is what brings me there. They flip a passable flap jack that can then be worked into a thing of delectable, mouth watering beauty.

Due to the unfortunate personal issues, I have been IHOP-free for most of the year. But I am roaring back again. I been to IHOP three/four nights a week for the past three weeks. Life just keeps getting better, don't it?


Tonite's dinner: the standard 'pancake combo': two eggs, hash browns and sausage.
Portions are jewish, but whatta ya want for six bucks?



And the real reason I'm there: the seasonal special, Pumpkin Pancakes. These are awesome. Topped with whipped cream and dusted with cinamon/nutmeg, it's a lot like eating a slice of pumpkin pie, complete with a slight custardy mouth feel that clings to the palate. (click on the pic to see just how yummy this thing is)
You really do need to get you some before the season ends.
I heard very little pissing and moaning from the right side of the blogosphere while George Bush was expanding health care entitlements.

Now that Obama wants his turn, it's the 'end of democracy'.

Friday, November 6, 2009

A Day At The Zoo

We spent Friday at the World Famous San Diego Zoo.
As zoos go, it's supposed to be among the best in the world, and it probably is, with all of it's open air exhibits, giant aviaries, natural settings and very few cages.
It also boasts something like 4,000 animals of over 900 different species. Impressive when you think about it, but rather boring and over-the-top in actual consumer interest.

What I'm saying is that after you've seen three large snakes, viewing the other fifty-two is a waste of time...

...and that so many multi-colored birds all start to look the same after the first half-dozen.

I'm sure that I'm not alone if I say that what I'd rather see is that big lion chasing one of those excess gazelles. Or, maybe a snake swallowing one of them colorful birds with the fancy name?
Now that would be entertaining.

Anyway, here's a souvenir for ya.
See the Giant Panda? Cute, huh?

video

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Holy Cocoa!


Chocolate embedded with good intentions? Some folks are actually buying this.
Intentional Chocolate, founded in 2007 by chocolatier Jim Walsh, uses a special recording device to capture the electromagnetic brain waves of meditating Tibetan monks; Walsh then exposes his confections to the recording for five days per batch.
Sounds like New Age hippie bullshit to me...
...subjects who ate Intentional Chocolate improved their mood 67% compared with people who ate regular chocolate.
Well, of course. And I'm damn sure that people who eat Godiva chocolate normally feel better and happier than those who eat Hersheys.
And you know what? I'm even willing to bet that anybody who spends $60/lb, or more for boutique chocolates is loath to admit otherwise.

This is all bullshit to me, and to prove it...
I'll meditate over a bag of brussels sprouts and see if the six year old next door is happy to eat them.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Milestone

Well, this morning I had my re-appointment to the aborted vocal cord procedure from a couple of weeks ago.
Luckily, I shouldn't have to go through this one again for some time. Doctor says this should last me a few years (similar to the previous vocal cord injection from last spring, that wasn't quite as thorough of a fix).

This procedure was a little more involved.

First, he numbed up my nostrils, and then the inside of my mouth, vocal cords, larynx... basically everything from the base of my tongue down to the entrance of my lungs. Eventually, the juice set in, and I stopped gagging on the utensils he was ramming down my throat, all the while I was holding my tongue (because a third hand was needed: mine).

By this time I was already sweating and gurgling. I was able to take a restful break while he shoved needles into my Adam's Apple from the outside. Yeah, another passel of 'ouches' on that one...

Wouldn't it be less painful if they could numb you up before they shoved the numbing juice needles in you? Maybe the researchers can work on that...

Now, sufficiently numbed, a camera was shoved down one nostril, and I got to see my vocal cords displayed on the screen in front of me. This part was cool.

The doctor then proceeded to jab a series of needles into my Adams Apple, through to the paralyzed cord, applying a number of injections til he got the result he wanted.

It only took about 45 minutes, but seemed a lot longer.

I could sense immediate improvement in my voice, but was advised to keep quiet, and take it easy for the rest of day. Had to allow for some healing time. No problem there. I was too sore anyway.

I now have full contact between the vocal cords, giving me a real voice, one beyond a whisper, for the first time in a year. And been making up for lost time the past few hours.

Watch out, world.
I'm back!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

True Fame Lasts

November 2nd is the Feast of All Souls, a day when we take a the extra time to especially remember, in prayer, those loved ones who have passed on before us. By "we", I mean we Catholics, but it's a good idea for the rest of you heretics to follow, as well.

Yesterday was a little busy, but today I took my daughter and mother to the cemetery to visit grandparents, most importantly, my sister Mary.
We did our thing, and afterwards I took my girl on a tour of some of the more interesting resting places. (Many Hollywood celebrities of the previous age reside in this place, Holy Cross Cemetery.)

She's aware of the Manson gang, and of late, that Roman Polanski jerk who's been in the news. So, I took her over to visit Sharon Tate (and her baby). Daughter was impressed.
Even more so after I pointed to Bing Crosby about ten yards away. (She's knows Bing: He was famous old guy the aged folks like who sang a Christmas song with David Bowie, yeah, he's cool)
She was less impressed with seeing Rita Hayworth across the walkway.

Right about then she sees a grave site decorated for Halloween, just a about six spaces down the row from Bing.
Being an older section of the cemetery, not many families visit or decorate these graves, so this one stood out as rather unusual.
Daughter walks over for a closer inspection, pauses a second, looks up and exclaims "Well, of course!"



I guess he still has his fans.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Pissing In The Wind

There's been a lot of talk over the Obama administration's war with Fox News. Besides being a bad move on the part of the White House, making them look petty, small and bullyish, there is another down side we should be seeing soon, and have already seen the beginnings of.

First off, I'm going to go right out and say what many on the right will not say, or cannot see: Fox News is biased.
Ok, you got that?

They are biased just like CBS, NBC, ABC, MSNBC and CNN are equally biased toward the other direction. All reporting is biased. It has to be.
There just is not enough newsprint, bandwidth, or broadcast time to report all of the news. There are not enough reporters to investigate all the stories, or possible stories, or to follow every lead.
Therefore, just the decision to report a story, or not, is a display of bias.

Now that have I got that out of the way...

The Obamians are pissed off at FNC for the stories they run. Were it not for FNC, we wouldn't know about the racists and radicals O has placed in positions of trust. Of course, one can ask the question: Do we really need to know those things?

I guess it all depends on if you think we would really need to know if Bush had a health care czar that called for the assassination of abortionists, or the *booting homosexuals? I would say so. How about you?

The Obamians are in a hard spot. They've largely gotten a free ride from the elite press, with nearly every correspondent getting in line to buff The One's helmet.
Now, he's gone and blown it. For a while, anyway.

In singling out FNC, he wasn't very smart. He's shown no evidence of a story falsely reported. No lies. No mistruths. No fake memos. He's got nothing on FNC except "They won't fall in line."
What he's done instead, through his exposition of Fox for not falling in line, is to expose the rest of his fawning water carriers for what they are.

He just might be starting something that could have unintended consequences long term, as news agencies-other-than-Fox scramble to find something to report that isn't so complimentary. And they will have to, just to show the world that they are what they claim they are: truly reliable, and credible, sources of information.
My question for them is: are they capable? or does the messiah worship run too deep?



*Booting: the tactic of repeatedly kicking somebody who has been knocked down, preferably in the head. Popularized by racist skinheads of the 80's Hardcore era, for it's use against 'queers'. The idea being you might get AIDS if you strike them with your fists, allowing their blood to pass into any broken skin of your own. 'Booting' was a safe alternative.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

It's Not Jim Crow

Ahh, here's one sure to bring out the race hustlers in the city that gave us the anti-race hustler for president.

A well-known bar in Chicago's Gold Coast is being accused of racism.

Some college students from St. Louis say they were barred from going in and they're not buying the reason they got.

This is about a senior trip for nearly 200 students from Washington University in St. Louis...

Six African-American men in the group were denied entry to the bar last weekend.

Student Regis Nurayi says the bar's manager told them their jeans were too baggy.

But Murayi didn't buy it.

So he switched jeans with a shorter, white student.

The white student, who now had very baggy jeans, was let in, and Murayi was still kept out.

The story really doesn't give much detail, nor has the reporter bothered to quote any response from the accused. Shoddy reporting, if you ask me. But what's new...

I'm assuming there's more to the story than just the side presented by the aggrieved.

But just assuming for the sake of argument... that the bar didn't want 'African-American' men in their midst, there's probably a law violation in there, some where.
But should there be?

Private property is private property. If a business doesn't want to service a certain kind of people, they shouldn't have to. One man's right to have a drink doesn't obligate another man to bring it to him.

The only stipulation I would demand that any restrictions to entry or service be clearly posted. Let the proprietor deal with whatever (peaceful) fallout may come from the public.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Non-Sufficient 'Me'-ness

California has this Unclaimed Property Division. I'm sure you all know what that is. You know, the place where you go to find money you didn't know you had? Yeah.

They also have a website, where one can go to see if your name is on the list. I ran my name through the search, and found that I was owed about $400 from a finance company.
I last had any business with said company, HSBC, sometime in 2003, when I paid off a car loan. It looked like maybe I had gone a payment too far, so I applied for return my funds.

This included:
An official request form.
A notarized affidavit claiming that I was who I am.
Any document that contained my name and Social Security Number (like a pay stub, S.S. Card, etc.)
A photo-copy of a government issued photo I.D.

I gathered all this up, and sent it off to the State Controller's office for processing (which was stated that I should allow up to 180 days for anything to happen).

This was on February 7th of this year.

Last week I received a letter (dated August 3rd, just within the 180 window), denying my claim.

The reason: I must furnish documentation showing that I had an account, or did business with, the company (HSBC) that reported the unclaimed property.

Now I'm pissed off.
The State already knows that funds are owed to 'Me'.
They have advertised that fact publicly on their website.
In response, I have already sufficiently documented my 'me'-ness.
And why isn't the fact that HSBC, who held the funds for 'Me', under my name, before surrendering them to The State in my name proof enough that I had a relationship with them?

California has already been sued, and lost, in the courts over it's rather shady attempts to keep unclaimed assets for itself. The website is a result of one such lawsuit that claimed the State wasn't following the law in attempting to find the proper owners.
(Other suits have been to prevent the State from continuing it's overly aggressive attempts to seize inactive accounts and safe-deposit boxes.)

It looks like I may need to place a phone call to my local politician to see if he can cut some red tape for me.


(cross posted @ Grumpy Old Men)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

We Are All Pussies Now

Some anthropologist dude has published a book documenting his findings of the athletic prowess of earlier mankind.

It's an interesting article to read, but I do find a little fault where he compares modern mankind's abilities to run and jump with those of neanderthals, who are a different species from us in the fisrt place.

Can You Hear Me Now?

Hopefully, after some time Friday morning, more folks can answer me with a 'Yes'.

I'm going in to see the doctor, again, who will attempt a little more doctoring with my paralyzed vocal cord.

I'll let King David and Mr D be judge of any improvements.
You have my voice on record, fellas. Lets see how it compares.

Of all the things, I think I miss the ability to speak more than I missed the ability to swallow and eat.

No complaints,though.
I refuse to complain, for I have been given much already.

*Update: Postponed.
Doctor forgot to tell me not to eat or drink anything beforehand. We have to reshedule, which pisses me off, cause I was so looking forward to some improvements.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Evil Widescreen

The influential lobby group Consumer Electronics Assn. is fighting what appears to be a losing battle to dissuade California regulators from passing the nation's first ban on energy-hungry big-screen televisions.

California used to have a reputation for truly progressive policies. Policies that cast off the old way of East Coast thinking, and allowed the state to prosper for generations, serving as a magnet for migrants from every corner of the nation.
Sadly, it hasn't been that way for over a generation.

Now, what passes for 'new' thinking is just the same old nannyism, chasing dubious ideals with policies that have always failed in the past.

This latest in just another chapter in the screwing of California citizens, dressed in the same old lies:
"We would not propose TV efficiency standards if we thought there was any evidence in the record that they will hurt the economy," said Commissioner Julia Levin, who has been in charge of the two-year rule-making procedure. "This will actually save consumers money and help the California economy grow and create new clean, sustainable jobs."

(Exactly how banning certain televisions will increase jobs in California has not been explained, and needn't be, for the result will be the same, and the Starbucks/Wholefoods crowd just eats up mindless rhetoric like this.)

The claim is that we will be saving $30 per year in electricity savings for every television set. More bullshit. California already has the highest cost in the nation for consumer electricity rates. The state refuses to allow any more electricity generating plants to be built (it's been at least 30yrs since a new plant has come on-line), and keeps punishing the folks for using more electricity.

They look at past usage; before there were computers, Hi-Fi stereo, microwave ovens, and nice color televisions in every home, or in more than one room, and declare that we are wasteful and need reining in. Instead of allowing us to have the higher standard of living modern technology delivers, we lectured about not being 'green enough', while they raise the cost of electricity, and willfully contribute to it's scarcity.

And in the next breath claim to be on a mission to increase California living standards. The big surprise is that they haven't manage to drive us into Second World living conditions already, though they are working on it.

Oh, and that $30 we are supposed to be saving? It will likely just get taxed away through even higher costs per kilowatt, which never seems to stop increasing because... the more you cut back, the more they need to raise the rates to recoup
the profit they lost, or else we'll face blackouts when they shut down the power plants that can't make money.

It's the same thing with the water utility. When we have a drought, rates rise to spur conservation. When the drought eases, water rates rise again to build more increased reservoir capacity to hold all the extra water. It never ends...

Look at your own electric bill. Are you paying up to 30 cents per kWh? We are.

Friday, October 16, 2009

I get this feeling that Balloon Boy's fifteen minutes won't be over any time soon.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Don't Ask, Don't Tell

I remember back in the early 90's when President Clinton attempted to lift the ban on gays serving in the military, and the howls of protest, not to mention the snickering, that emanated from the public at large as well as from within the ranks of the armed forces.

By position then was, and still is, that such decisions would be better left to the military to decide.
I also thought it was pretty ridiculous for Clinton to carry the rainbow banner so early in his administration. Just plain silly stupid on his part. He paid at the polls for that one.

I've heard all the arguments of how homosexuality doesn't fit well with the military lifestyle and then all the other tangents that to me really weren't legitimate issues at all. I've never served in the military, but most-to-many of my friends had served in some capacity or another. They basically all said the same thing: it just wouldn't work. (Although they didn't seem to think it would be as strong of an issue for lesbians.)

Now, President Obama is getting the pressure to lift the ban that President Clinton didn't.

The early 90's were a long time ago. Things have changed. Social attitudes have become more accepting of homosexuality, and living conditions among military personnel are not the same as they were back in the early 80's. I'm assuming they have also become less communal since the early 90's as well.

But human sexuality and the military's need for behavioral discipline have not changed. And likely never will.

And once again, I think this issue is best left for the military to decide, maybe on a gender by gender, service by service basis. Whatever they decide, I think it's a fool's game for civilians to attempt to force the issue in one direction or the other.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Fits And Starts

For the past several weeks I've had shit running through my head, things I've wanted to say, and some things I still do want to say, but the fingers won't co-operate with the thought process.

I really envy some of you who can poke out a thought with hardly any thought to it at all.

See ya tomorrow. I think I'll have something for ya by then.
Thanks for checking in, anyway.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Maybe it's time we started to officially view the health care industry as a public utility, since we seem to act that way already?

OK.
Debate over on that.
Now what?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Ugly American

So you've all heard about President Obama traveling to Denmark to lobby the International Olympic Committee on behalf of the totally awesome city of Chicago's bid to host the games in... what? 2016 or something like that?

The usual partisans are doing what partisans usually do. The haters of Obama are acting like a bunch of ragging bitches, and the disciples of Obama can't cut the palm branches fast enough.

Personally, the more time he spends in Denmark is less time he spends interrupting scheduled programming with platitudinous speeches, so maybe it's all good in the short term. But I would like to add: chilling with the IOC guys isn't exactly presidential level type stuff. He'd be better off, POTUS-wise, giving another speech to kids, hugging a disaster victim, or throwing out a first pitch.

What is missing from the cacophony is this thought that nobody seems to be thinking:
With the United States already dominant in Olympic Sports, and just plain dominating across the board worldwide, in damn near every category of human and national achievement, do we really need to be challenging an emerging nation (in this case,Brasil) for an even greater share of the three week spotlight?
Isn't collecting the most bling enough for us?

Growing up, my Dad use to tell me that in Italy the saying was that Americans are like manure: everywhere.
He explained it: "Outside, itsa good to have around. Ina house, it stinks."

Typical of southern Italians, our family was decidedly pro-American, and enjoyed the fruits of strong ties to family members who were Americans.
This was not an insult, but a statement of observation.

An observation so simple that Amercans can't seem to grasp it, though we should try.

Understandably, the world is tired of having the US up in their grill all the time. It's not just the militaristic Neocon Bush stuff. It's everything. It's economics. It's pop culture. It's technology. It's science and discovery. It's politics.
It's the standard American swagger that never ends, mostly because, like manure, we are good to have around.
And like manure, too much intimacy breeds contempt.

It's a point worth considering for this administration that promised a less aggressive stance on the world stage.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Europe Still Sucks In Many Catagories

A couple of other bloggers have voiced their opinions on the Roman Polanski thing.
First, and best, out of the box is Brian, who's mincing no words:
The crime in question involved drugging and raping a 13-year old girl. But really, the girl's age is really rather beside the point, isn't it? The point is that he raped her. It would be no less infuriating if she had been 23 or 33 at the time.

And yet...the reactions on the other side of the pond I keep hearing fall along the lines of "it's a shame they've arrested such a great artist," and "really, this isn't that big of a deal."

Read the rest.

With the exception of "Rosemary's Baby", I've never seen a Roman Polanski film. The thought of the guy kinda creeped me out early on, and I was on personal boycott. And as you who know me know by now: I enjoy European films, and have seen more than my fair share for blue-collar white guy.
Not even "Chinatown" guys. Sorry, but I'm glad you enjoyed it anyway.

Anyway, back to the point... I still remember back in the early 80's, when it was expected that Polanski might receive and Academy Award for "Tess" starring Natassja Kinski, whom he was also fucking 'engaging in a romantic relationship with' when she was only 15. This when he was in his 40's. Obviously, this dude is just a little too creepy to score often enough with women who are old enough or sober enough to say 'No.'

Back then, it was said that maybe the Justice Department should give him a pass to receive his award. It was all in the past, after all. (Actually, it was less than 3yrs, but I guess Hollywood has different standards on some things when they pertain to certain people).

It looks like nothing has much changed. Hollywood values are still retarded, and Europeans still give a pass to child rapists if they are famous enough.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

And The Meme Still Goes On... .

Taken from Night Writer and Mr. Dilettante. Now it's my turn.
Woo Hoo!!!

1. The phone rings. Who will it be? I don't know. I rarely, as in: mostly never, answer it.

2. When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart? Nope. That's a union job.

3. In a social setting, are you more of a talker or a listener? I'm a listener. Been that way since last October, and it's damn near killing me.

4. Do you take compliments well? I do better with assaults on my character.

5. Do you play Sudoku? Should I?

6. If abandoned alone in the wilderness, would you survive? For a while. If I had warm enough clothing, and a sharp knife, maybe a little longer. I'd like to think so, anyway.

7. Did you ever go to camp as a kid? Nope. I don't know anybody else who did, either.

8. What was your favorite game as a kid? Actually, there were two hugely popular games among the neighbor kids, depending on the weather. "Sploosh Ball" was played whenever a Nerf football got left out in the rain, or ended up in someone's pool. Just like ball tag, but wetter, and could hurt more.
The other was (you asked) "Shit Ball" (seriously, that's what we called it). Whenever a wet Nerf wasn't available, a volleyball was smeared with dog feces. Again, just like ball tag, but you ran much faster and dodged more acrobatically.

9. If a sexy person was pursuing you, but you knew she was married, would you? "Was" is past tense, ain't it?

10. Could you date someone with different religious beliefs than you? That's usually how it happened.

11. Do you like to pursue or be pursued? By whom, and for what?

12. Use three words to describe yourself? Take your pick.

13. Do any songs make you cry? Openly? No. But "O Sole Mio", when done right, may cause an inner stirring. Chalk it up to my family's agricultural history, what the words mean to them, and how those emotions were, in turn, taught to me.

14. Are you continuing your education? Aren't we all?

15. Do you know how to shoot a gun? Not a clue.

16. Have you ever taken pictures in a photo booth? Not that I recall.

17. How often do you read books? On a daily basis, not at all. Generally, I'll buy one, and not put it down until finished, a few times a year.

18. Do you think more about the past, present or future? Yeah, something like that...

19. What is your favorite children’s book? Why do I need one?

20.What color are your eyes? Grayish-greenish, I think.

21. How tall are you?Somewhere round 5'8", maybe a little higher, but not by much.

22. Where is your dream house located? In the center of the Ozarks, on 1000 acres or so, a few miles from town, enclosed with an electrified fence, ringed by a 50' deep moat stocked with hungry crocs, guard towers with sharpshooters, and equipped with anti-satellite technology so The Man can't see what I'm up to.

23. If your house was on fire, what would be the first thing you grabbed? Mamie

24. When was the last time you were at Olive Garden? Probably ten years ago.

25. Where was the furthest place you traveled today? Garden Grove, about 50 miles away. Met a friend for lunch.

26. Do you like mustard? No

Friday, September 25, 2009

Iran And The Bomb

AS the only nation to ever engage in atomic warfare, and who still maintains a large stockpile of nuclear weaponry, I think it's more than a little absurd to expect another nation, especially one seeking prestige such as Iran, to fore go any nuclear ambition.

Whatever you may think of their current regime, the Iranian people have a proud history of tremendous accomplishments. It's for good cause that they may feel a need to finally be recognised by the West as something other than a rag-headed backwater.

I think we are playing a fool's game,here. Give it up, and deal with it. We can start by minding our own business for a change.

Monday, September 21, 2009

From Bad To Worse?

I underwent the gamma knife procedure in, what... February was it? As part of the follow-up and monitoring I was to have an MRI every three months for the first year, followed by one MRI every twelve months... forever.

I never got that first 'three-month' MRI. Having to do with the insurance provider dragging it's feet with approval, combined with lack of openings at their network MRI provider.
Part of the hassle is my requirement to be put to sleep for the procedure. They hate that, as it costs a lot of extra money. But anybody who's had to lay through an MRI can understand why, when my brain is the target, heavy sleep-style sedation would be a necessity. (For those who haven't: place your head in a five-gallon bucket full of foam, and lay perfectly still while strapped to a wooden bench for about 90 minutes. And don't you dare fidget!)

By the time I'd actually had my 'three-month' MRI, it had been six months.

Today, the doctor's office called to re-schedule a follow-up visit (following up on the 'three-month' MRI that was three months late.) I can't see him without prior-approval either, and they just got around to approving it.
The next opening is ...
you ready for this...
November 13th.

And they are working on getting my 'nine-month' MRI scheduled for November 30th. Reasonably on target this time, IF everything works according to plan. Sayeth the office: still waiting for approval to schedule the next MRI, but they've reserved that date in hopes that it will happen. Approval request has been submitted, and re-submitted, and re-submitted... every week since the last MRI. Expecting a non-rejection any week now.

But, the next office visit opening (post next MRI) is December 14th. Would you like to reserve that spot? (pending approval for said office visit, of course).

I possess, because I've paid for it, what some of these politicians might be referring to when they deride "Cadillac Health Plans". Generally, I have a better package of coverage than the receptionists (health care workers) who manage my case. I know this because they tell me so. You can see that I'm not some piker with a poor man's package of left overs.

Now here's the rub:

The talking heads say ObamaCare will leave us in a Canadian-style health care system, with six-month waits to get an MRI, months-long waits to see your doctor, rationing of services, rising tidewaters, swarms of locusts, piss-water beer and dead kittens.
It appears we are half-way there already.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It's Beautiful Day In America

I've long been called a racist for my failure to patronise. The willingness to call what I saw, and defend it when challenged. In recent years it just got old, and I stopped defending myself. (Just call the word; you know you want to; feel better?; now shut the fuck up.)
I admit, it's also fun to speak the words others fear to breath aloud.

I remember back during the election campaign, when a lot of normally center-minded, and even right-of-center-minded voters thought that voting for Obama would demonstrate a blow against racism. And may even be the end of racism itself, at least as a political force.

I caught some flack (on other blogs, notably about seven of them)for attempting to point out some flaws in their choice of Anointed Black Man. For the most part, I was concerned with his political past,his parental/familial history, his lack of experience, and absolutely no real evidence that he was a centrist, come-together kinda of policy guy.
In short, if you just want a unifying black man to lead the nation, pick a real descendant of slavery with a little bit of cred in center-minded, unifying consensus area. Cred that extends to when the teleprompter is turned off.
In return, I was labeled a racist. It didn't bother me personally. I just saw it as the end of discussion. A discussion others were either not ready for, incapable of, or unwilling to engage in. That's fine.

When challenged, it was never explained how voting for skin color wasn't itself racism, but challenging the legitimacy of his unifying blackness was.

Fantasies and dreams of what you want to be are often difficult to snuff even when presented with strong evidence that contradicts the possibility of the dream ever taking place. I'm guilty of this as well, so I'm not pointing fingers at anybody. I'm just noting a common human failing.
And as skilled politicians of either stripe do, a bill of goods was presented to willing and gullible buyers, who responded accordingly.

Now, it looks like America's "chickens are coming home to roost", to borrow a phrase from a Obama's spiritual mentor.

Racism, as an accusation, is now bigger than ever. It has become the mantra of Obama's defenders. Criticise the president, and you are a racist. Doesn't matter on what grounds, what policy, or whatever. Only racism drives these people, you see?
The same nation that eagerly desired a Black skinned president is now angry that they have a Black skinned president.
Naturally, this protection from dissent will have to extend to any future Presidents, of either color, or that would be racist,right? I encourage further outting of racists everywhere.
Let's drag them all out the closet, shall we?

Come on, you too. Yeah, you know who you are.
Step on out.

Do you currently enjoy the President's policies? That's Ok. At some point in time, you may find a topic of disagreement, and if not this one, then the next will likely piss you off about something.
Come join the fun. You're a racist,too.


When certain words are overused they tend to lose their meaning. "Racist" has become one of those words.

Nobody can be a racist anymore, or we are all racists.
Doesn't really matter now, does it?

Thank you, to President Obama, and those well-intentioned racists who voted for him.
"Racism" is finally dead in America.
Let us rejoice.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Bears-Packers, Week One

I know all you "Grumpy's" are just waiting to hear my side of the story. I hope yer takin notes...

I've been hopeful, but guarded, since the Cutler-for-Orton trade and the windfall of promises that came with. Though I sincerely hoped I was mistaken, it looks like maybe I won't be.

With Cutler's four INT's, it was looking more like the return of Rex Grossman last nite in Green Bay, instead of the second coming of Sid Luckman.
And I saw nothing better than Orton would have delivered.

Yessir, it looks like Bears fans will have to wait to see the 'explosion of Offense' that was all but promised to us with the acquisition of Jay Cutler at QB. I still remain hopeful, but... ya know... I won't be hoisting the purple dixie cup anytime soon.

And then comes the news that the mighty Urlacher is out for the season. Could last night have been any worse?
For sure, I would've expected 'last night' to have happened last year, but not this year. But before you Cheeseheads get all swaggerish, just keep reminded that an ineffective Bears Offense, and a less than stellar Defense was beating you, and was close to sealing the deal, at Lambeau.

Your Packers will have to do better than that when you hit Favre House. It should be a good show, either way.

On a side note:
Former Bear, traded for Cutler, now a Bronco, Kyle Orton threw for a TD when it mattered most, and put the W in the column.
For sure, Orton doesn't bring the level of promises that Cutler does. He also doesn't fall so short of them,either.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Week One Dilemma

I subscribe to the NFL Sunday Ticket, the service that broadcasts every game into my man cave.

Needless to say, I can always find an interesting game watch.

So, here I am, half hour before kick off, and still haven't picked a game from too many interesting choices.

Do I watch a local boy, Mark Sanchez, who's career I've been following since his high school days (and who my son played against) start his rookie season at QB for the Jets?

Or the Broncos play the Bengals. I'm not too big on either team, but I liked Kyle Orton when he was playing for the Bears, and would like to see him do well with his new team, the Broncos. If he starts blowing it, I'd be changing channels real quick.

Then there is the game that is sure to get some over saturation in the media: The Minnesota Favres take on the Cleveland Browns. Maybe I won't even need to actually watch it, being so heavily covered maybe I can get to see the all the 'good parts' later when the talkers do their talking?

Fifteen minutes left before kickoff...
I better get me a beer and then flip a coin.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

He's Swinging A Wide Rope

I'll let KingDavid speak for himself:
While many blogs with multiple posters are geared towards one topic; here at Grumpy Old Men, we will be taking on all aspects of civilized (and uncivilized) life on the planet. I've been reading each of their individual blogs for years, and they all seem to have their own areas of expertise and a passion for what they write about.


So, if you get a little tired of reading about politics all the time, and Powerline, Townhall, Malkin and Coulter, the Drudge Report, etc, etc; get to be a little too much---come visit Grumpy Old Men for fun and view what's going on in the world through the eyes of some average Joes, and examine the philosophy behind being fairly contented 30-40-50 somethings in this mad, mad, mad, mad world we call planet earth.

In his reckless abandon, KingDavid has seen fit to risk it all with the addition of one lone,California outsider. Or maybe it's his charity of heart.
Either way, I'm there, as well as here.
You'll no doubt recognise some of the other Grumpy Old Men as frequent visitors here.

This will still be my main site, but expect some cross posting, as well as some contributions unique to either page.

*There is an open invitation to anyone who admits to being a Lions fan, if you can pull him out of the closet, to join us.
If you can can find one, send him over. If you find them both, that's even better.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Again????







I really think it's time to stop giving prime-time campaign readings and just get to work on fixing the shit that's broken.

Isn't that what he was elected for?
More 'do'. Less 'talk'.

How 'bout it?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Maybe I'm missing something... but why don't the ObamaCare universal health care designers just extend Medicare to everybody?

Problem solved, all in one, simple, two sentence bill.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Monday, August 31, 2009

Inglourious Basterds

Take The Dirty Dozen, with a greater cinematic emphasis on the violence, add a few more plot twists and turns, and you've basically summed up Inglourious Basterds.
It's The Dirty Dozen, taken to the next level, and the one after that.

Another master from Tarantino. I'm not one of those who possesses a Tarantino fetish, but I am a fan of much of his works on an individual basis. (For the record: I've never seen Kill Bill, and have no desire to.)

One of the small, cinematic details I appreciate in this film was the depiction of Adolph Hitler, who is never named as such, but you know it's him. Instead of the Hitler we've come to see in most movies, in this one he is presented as not just crazy-mad, but physically unattractive, accentuating the ugliness of his personhood.
We are presented not with a 'Hitler' character, but instead caricature of what we really think about the Fuhrer, and who he was, as opposed to a historical portrayal.
A brilliant detail, in my always humble opinion.

I was a little disappointed in the lack of bloodletting violence, but by the time I realized what I was missing, I was too engrossed in the drama that was unfolding to notice that I wasn't getting precisely what I came for. That's a good thing,really.
Don't get me wrong. The violence and gore are plenty, just a lot less than what I was expecting.

If you haven't seen it (and judgeing by the box office reports, you likely already have), I suggest you do. But leave the kids at home.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

For a drunken, elitist, socialistic ideologue who was only popular in newsrooms and Massachusetts, I'd say the coverage is just a little bit over the top already.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Bank Strikes Back

Tonight, I ventured out to Mexico Chiquito for a chili relleno fix. I hadn't been there yet, and was anxious to give them a try.
Alas, I was too late.
I got there to find it burned damn near to the ground.
I suspect they won't be rising from the ashes anytime soon, if at all.
Arson is a great way to get out of a non-profitable restaurant. I'm not saying this is what happened, but hey... statistics are what they are.

Too bad. It looked like such a nice place.


With my previous adventure to The Bank Of Mexican Food still fresh in my memory, along with my offer to the owner that, maybe, I might give it another chance, I decided "What the hell".
Now was as good a time as any.

This experience started off differently: I walked in, was seated within seconds, and had menu, flatware and drink order in no time. Spot on, great service. Friendly,too.
And I only had to wave off the chips and salsa once.

Taking a cue from the past, I skipped the chili relleno and ordered three enchiladas, a la carte. (Still can't handle rice and beans. Maybe someday...)

Absolutely a different food this time.
The enchiladas, I could tell, were freshly made. They were not the perfected, every-one-just-like-the-other, cookie cutter type enchiladas you would find at a larger, well-ordered commercial restaurant chain.
Nope. These were more of what you would find in somebody's kitchen, in their home.
They were good, and fresh, with a slight baked-type crunch around the edges.

Loosely folded (personally, I prefer a more tightly folded enchilada), and filled with not just cheese, but also laced with onions and black olives, adding a little more taste and texture to the meal. A nice touch, and one that I like very much. You wouldn't usually find this personal addition at a chain location.
And the cheese was stringy/stretchy, lacking the pasty plasticity that doomed the rellenos last time out.

A traditional style, slightly spicy, not too tangy, tomato-based sauce complimented the enchiladas without burying them.
After the enchiladas were finished, I actually scooped up as much of the sauce as I could, til it was gone. It was yum.

Nothing bland about my plate this time. It wasn't heavily spicy, either. So, if you're a native Mexican food eater, this may be a little mild for your buds.
But, as a mainstream, made for American tastes, Mexican food, this should make you happy.

Almost There


From what I'd seen today, the Bears are looking better than last year. But, so are the Packers. I think the division belongs to one of these two, hopefully the former.
The season opener will be an exciting one. Go Bears!

As for the Vikings: the whole story just reeks of bad karma on so many levels.
And The Gods don't like bad karma. I wouldn't be surprised if the Vikings finished behind the Lions.

($25 million for two years? What were they thinking?)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Obama Preaches The Gospel Of Life

Well, not really. It's from an Episcopalian site, but we'll cite it anyway because, like the Rev. Wright, almost anyone can be called a Christian nowdays.

Obama, religious leaders urge people of faith to participate in health care reform


Here's the money shot:

"fabrications that have been put out there to stop people from meeting a core moral and ethical obligation that we look out for one another … that I am my brother's keeper, my sister's keeper, and in the wealthiest nation on earth we are neglecting to live up to that call."



This from a guy who would deny life saving treatment to children.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Officially Untitled Post

Would you be willing to buy a comprehensive Auto Care Insurance policy?
It would cover the obvious things we buy insurance for, like an accident, flood, falling trees...or any other form of catastrophic occurrence.

It would also bundle oil changes,transmission service, diagnostic check ups, tire repair/replacement, brakes, washing and waxing... for however often the owner of the policy deemed these things necessary.
Of course, those with pre-existing damage, bad rings, grinding brakes, blown gaskets or bald tires cannot be discriminated against; while premiums would be the same for the 20yr old, three-times DUI male driving a street rod as they would be for the granny who only drives three miles to Mass on Sunday...
...While anybody who doesn't have coverage has the privilege of driving their vehicle into any auto care center with full expectation of service... even if the vehicle is not properly registered, has foreign plates, and suspicious VIN numbers are used for identification.

How much do you pay for auto coverage now? How much do you think it will cost with the new policy?

Much of the problem with the way we approach health care can be seen in what you would predict to be the issues facing us if we were to take the same approach regarding auto insurance as we do in our attempts to make sense out of what we call the health care system.

Which is not really a system at all, but a case of severe governmental meddling in the affairs of a large industrial segment of our economy, a population with an entitlement mentality in regards to the fruits of that industry, and lawyers who know a teet when they see one.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

First Obama accused pediatricians of performing unnecessary tonsillectomies, just for the money, citing as proof some statistics that were promptly proven to be false.
This was in his prime-time press conference. You know, the one where everything he said was a lie? That one.

Today, he accused surgeons of hacking off limbs instead of providing care. Once again, the motive was doctor's greed. This, once again, is also a lie.

This self-centered messiah is either the stupidest fuck we could have ended up with, or he's just plain bad. I'm mean, bad as in evil. Not a good person.

And I think he needs to expalin what his beef is with the doctors? Why does he feel the need to cheap-shot them repeatedly? What is the source of this animus that appears, to me, to be personal?

Or maybe, just maybe, he's too stupid to realize these accusations were lies. I'm not so sure about that,though. Even I knew, the moment I heard these statements, that they were false on their face. And I'm just an undereducated mill worker.

What's his fucking excuse? Doesn't he know how the industry works? Division of labors, and all that? If that's the case, do we really want him deciding anything having to do with reforming the medical industry?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Some Thoughts On The Health Care Thing

The amount of people who have been blogging about The Obama's health care plan is without end. It is for this reason I've generally left the issue alone here.
There is too much to say, and too much that we, as a population do not/cannot understand.

The best I can do with the issue is post a series of thoughts or ideas that may or may not make any sense and likely wont tie together into any sort of coherent policy preference, but I'll try.

First thing, we need to get the concept of a 'health care system' out our head. Health care, whatever you think it means, is not a system. It's an industry. A large, and ever growing, segment of our economy. Just like we can't refer to the Coal Mining System, the Automotive Manufacturing System, the Burgers and Fries Producing System without sounding just a little bit removed from the realities of what it we are dealing with/talking about.

The Health Care Industry is not, and should not be allowed to become, an operative branch of government.

Before we think of ways that the government can get involved in providing health care, how about we first think of ways that the government can uninvolve itself from those who are currently providing health care?

I kind of favor the idea that health insurance should be marketed much like automobile insurance. Sure, it means that a potentially child bearing woman in her twenties would pay a whole lot more for her coverage than a male counterpart; but this, I'm sure, would help level the playing field with the twenty-something male who buys auto insurance.

You wouldn't expect auto insurance,life insurance, or a homeowner's policy to cover a pre-existing condition, so why do we find it acceptable to mandate health insurance policies to do so?

What are the odds Obama and his merry band of leaders will subject their families to the same plan they want to mandate for the rest of us? How about 'zero'?
But, given the strength of government employee unions, odds are they will still preserve their status quo, better-than-the-rest-of-us, medical plans while private employers would be sticking the rest of us the public plan.
This will create a two tier society: those 'of the government' and the proletariat. Wasn't this type of system already deemed a failure by history?

Exactly was is "Health Care"? Do abortions count? How about wart removal? Penile Extensions? Physical therapy? Gym memberships? How often? And who decides these things?

If wrongfully denied coverage by my insurance provider, I have recourse through legal channels. Or my family will, should I die as a result. Do you really think we will be allowed to sue the Federal Government for the same reasons?

Remember 'Joe the Plumber'? After asking an embarassing question of the wrong person, his tax and child support records were made public. How safe do you think democracy and liberty will be when the government owns everyone's medical records?

I'm liking these vociferous 'Town Halls', and I enjoy seeing congressmen and senators finally recieving some due respect.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Watch This Space...


My mind and body have been occupied with less worthy pursuits.
I'll get back to you real soon, and I promise to make the rounds.