Friday, August 31, 2007

Your Arms Too Short To Box With God

I fight with God a lot. Just He and I, toe-to-toe. I had mentioned the "Bruce" in "Bruce Almighty", and how I think I'm a little different in my approach to our Lord than old Bruce was. God definitely knows better than to ever let me have His job, even for a minute. (If you haven't seen that movie, you have no idea what I'm talking about...yet)

I challenge God when things don't go my way. I figure I haven't pushed my luck with Him too much yet, well, because I'm still here, ya know? (thoughts of bugs and windshields inserted here). But I try to be crafty in my reasoning with Him. I'll say something like, "You had to intervene here, to stop me from getting what I wanted. Couldn't You, just once, do nothing and let me be? I'm not asking You to do something, I'm asking You to do nothing. What's the deal?" Or something like the massive Lottery prizes, where I'll say, "C'mon, you can let me win, because you know I'll share it with everyone.

Yeah, nice try.

Of course, He doesn't fight back. At least not the way we think of "fighting back". He goes about His business, and I about mine, until the next Round..."Let's get ready to Rumble!"

I figure it's like this. If I'm finding way too many potholes in the path God is laying out for me, maybe I'm just trying to go faster than He can build it, you know?

I'm living proof that God made us in his image, just not exact duplicates.


I can't say that I believe in ghosts, at least not in the "supernatural" sense, like poltergeists and such. I do believe that our souls experience some sort of life continuation after our bodies call it a day, but as far as hauntings and things like that go, I am definitely a Doubting Thomas Stupid. I mean think about it, if a soul is freed of its physical boundaries, could be anywhere it wanted to be without limit, how reasonable would it be for it to hang around my apartment knocking bottles off the shelves?

I will state that I believe in Guardian Angels. There is simply no other explanation for the fact that I am alive. However, I don't think throwing a clock across the room fits that job description.

But I just wonder about something. Given my doubts and reasonable certainty that souls don't become spirits, I would say I'm in the company of a lot of other people who also don't "believe in Ghosts". I'm not the only Doubter, I'm sure.

Just suppose however, that one night you walked into your dark living room, and there, before your eyes, was a genuine spook. An apparition floating in the middle of the room, doing whatever ghosts are supposed to do. You're alone, naturally, and no one is there to witness it, so you're on your own as far as making up your mind as to what you see.

And just like that, the vision is gone. What would you do? Would you convince yourself that it was some unexplained physical phenomenon? Or would you accept that something you doubted so long actually exists?

Or would you do like me, and just run back into the bedroom and hide under the blanket?

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


I ran across a simple concept in the textbook I am reading. There is actually a rule in the securities industry that states if you advertise a good or service as "free", it has to be offered completely without conditions, as in, no strings attached. Period.

It's actually true for the securities industry, and the industry toes the line.

Why hasn't every industry adopted the no-strings-attached guideline on "free" offers? (Free credit report, anyone?)

I would like to wake up someday before I die, and not see one example of people getting hosed. It doesn't have to be a permanent thing. Doesn't even have to be fact, I just would like to go through the day one time without seeing someone walking around with wool-covered eyes.

A friend wrote about a run-in with a retailer. And it really can be annoying. Drug companies advertise medicines that have a longer list of side-effects than benefits, so much so that the commercials are cut into two parts, telling you how it can work on you, and telling you how it can hurt you, and I notice part 2 is commonly getting to be the longer portion.

I actually read the disclaimers to one site's price guarantees, and it made me think about the amount of lawyer-time that went into creating the 10,000 loopholes. And of course, the cost. I wonder if it just wouldn't be cheaper to lower the prices?

Or just advertise truthfully?

What do you think? Suppose all the prices of things went up a tad, but there were no more loophole-filled policies. Could you deal with it?

While you ponder that, I'm gonna try and get me a free $500 gift card somewhere.

Monday, August 27, 2007


I caught myself, recently, turning into one of "those" neighbors. You know the type, they seem to know everything you're into. I haven't quite taken to peering through the blinds, so I don't feel too badly about it yet.

I sit at my kitchen table, which is right by the window. I spend a lot of hours there studying lately. Well, one of my neighbors has a car with the security system that beeps the car horn every time you activate it or deactivate it. I was hearing that horn 10-15 times a day. And then I had that first "neighbor" thought:

"Damn she goes out a lot..."

But it didn't stop there.

"Geez, is all those kids do out there is scream all day?"

"She do anything else but go to the laundry room all day?"

Well, I caught myself. I closed the window, shut the blinds, and drew the curtains. I turned the air conditioning on.

I made it back from the edge.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

8 Things About Stupid

We have to post these rules before we give you the facts.

  • Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

  • People who are tagged write their own blog post about their eight things and include these rules.

  • At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged and they should read your blog.

Well, I have to pound out another 8 facts about Stupid to comply with this meme from Shash

I thought I would try this in a categorical format, just to try and mix it up a little. I mean I don't want to write just about the kind of sneakers I wear (New Balance). So here goes.

  1. Politically Speaking I am registered as an Independent. And that's boring, so 'nuff said.

  2. Musically My musical taste borders on the bizarre, at least in its variety. I listen to classic Rock, One Hit Wonders, and I have to admit, I'm not too quick to turn off the stuff my kids listen to.

  3. Aesthetically I have no clearly defined "Perfect Woman". Short, tall, thin, curvy, blonde, definite quality locks it in. But intelligence is mandatory. Not so much possessing a set amount, but a willingness to express what's going on in the mind. That's not a lie, or a politically-correct statement, it's a fact. I'm not PC about hotness, and to prove it, let me add that a nice pair of boots adds 100ยบ to a woman's hotness.

  4. Pop-Culturally My biggest celebrity crush ever was Meredith Salenger. My favorite TV show at the moment is "Still Standing", a comedy in syndication and currently only available on Lifetime TV. I currently have no favorite song. My favorite movies are: "Apollo 13", "Cinderella Man", "I, Robot (Will Smith Version)", and "Wedding Crashers". At least this week.

  5. Religiously My religion is best kept to myself. I let it guide my life. If I wanted it to guide yours, I'd have become a Priest. I've read the Bible twice, but I don't have it memorized. I'm faithful, I believe in God, and I try to let religion be a major moral guidance. Notice I said "I". There's no "i" in team, but there are two in religion. You have your beliefs, I'll have mine, ok?

  6. Educationally I have a Bachelor's Degree. I was the first one in my family to have accomplished that feat, and I'm a little proud of that. I encourage my kids to soak up every minute of their educations. I'm a major computer geek, an appetite I've developed later in life, but one that I have a passion about, which is funny, since my degree had nothing to do with Computer Science.

  7. Socially I don't date at the moment, a decision partly based on the fact that I am a single dad with 3 kids, and partly on the fact that my body is pretty busted up right now, and pain is a boring topic. I'm also studying for a major licensing exam, and aside from some blog time, that's consuming me right now. I love my friends. My friends let me tell them I love them. They know I do, and they deal with it. I hug. Not uncomfortably, mind you, hugs are for my loved ones and friends, so if I run into you on the street and we're not good friends yet, I'll wait for a signal!

  8. Fault-ly (is that even a word?) I could name 100,000 faults about me. a. I talk too much, and I write too much; I never know when to shut up. b. I'm a "fixer" who always tries to solve people's problems. I mean I just never feel content to say, "yeah that sucks" and leave it at that. But sometimes people don't want you to fix, they just want you to listen...I try. c. I am way too slow to forgive. It takes me forever to get angry at someone, but then it takes forever to let it go once I do. That's not good, but I am working on it. d. Did I mention I talk too much?

I think I need to appoint a Blog Supervisor for my work here. I need someone I can pay 10 cents a word to. That will shorten these entries in a hurry. Any volunteers?

OK, for the next 9 hours I have to study. Great way to spend a Sunday. So don't let me read or write any more till I'm done!

I'll get back to you with my Tag Victims. I have to choose carefully...

Friday, August 24, 2007

A La Carte

Nicole Richie Released From Jail in 82 minutes.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketOf course, this story is being met with the usual civil outrage. But here's how we fix the problem with the justice system in this country:

We make the system fair and balanced by doing the one thing that no one wants to admit really is done. i think it would quiet a lot of critics, and I don't think it would be such an expensive prospect.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketIt's really easy. At the entrance to every courthouse, right by the courtroom doors, you simply have a pile of menus for defendants. They take one and peruse the price of all the plea deals and the corresponding crimes. If you can't afford the price of the bargain, you have to take the full sentence. If you have the cash, just pay at the window and off you go.

And it runs like any other business. If you don't like your purchase, just return it for a better one. You could be like that nut-job astronaut down in Florida. She went to court today to ask the court to remove the monitoring bracelet because it's inconvenient. She gets boo-boo's from it when she exercises, and it beeps in public and makes people look at her. Can't have that, can we? "All Returns Happily Accepted". That's part of running a good business.

We aim to please.

Another American Idol Launch

This morning I got to hear the first single from the recent American Idol winner, Jordin Sparks.

I'm a little disappointed, because Sparks has a nice, powerful voice, but I feel as though the label is going the "safe route" with her release. It's good, but I don't think it's what she could be doing with that voice. It's Pop, has the standard beat, but it has that synthesizer sound. I don't think Sparks is breaking any new ground here. It's not bad. And that's a shame, someone of her talent should not be going for "not bad".

Click here to listen.

Note: this link takes you to AOL Video. Since it is AOL's product, it might take a few tries to get it to work, and it's only the sound, there's no video at the moment.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

We Have To Just Keep Remembering

Dream A Little Dream

I hate those mini-dreams that happen when you're just falling asleep, you know the ones that make you jump and wake back up.

I usually don't have a problem once I am asleep, I rarely wake up because of dreams. But last night, I dreamt that I fell down the stairs from the upstairs apartment. It was a nasty spill, I grabbed at the bannister, ripped it out of the wall and it came down on top of me.

But then I woke up. I wasn't hurt, no one saw me fall, and no one got to laugh. Seems like an awful waste of valuable dreaming time, no? And now I have to replace the damned bannister.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Live From The Medium

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketSo I really love I'm one of those people who always thinks a face is familiar, and when I see a new movie come out with someone I recognize, but can quite pinpoint, it's IMDB to the rescue. Well today I saw a commercial for a movie called "The Nanny Diaries" and there was a guy who fit the bill. I IMDB'd the Nanny Diaries, and there he was. Knew I knew him from somewhere. Of course, that means I have to admit that I saw "The Fantastic Four", but, that's for another time. The guy played "The Human Torch" in that flick.

Inane Quote of the Day (IQD, I'm big on acronyms lately, ok?): From a promo for one of those reality shows..."Truth in time, tells all." Yeah, that's the quote. I have no idea what it means.

Facing Up to the Inevitable

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketYou know, it's nothing profound to say that we all know when a relationship isn't going to work. I can't say that I didn't give this my all. When it became apparent that things weren't as good as I'd hoped they'd be, or as good as they were promised to me, I didn't just give up. I cajoled, caressed and gave it a lot of attention. I even got outside counseling involved. The outsiders offered advice, and even some hands-on assistance.

There are a great many memories locked up in there. Things we'd experienced together, saved in our memory, and now they're gone. Simple as that. It's funny how life turns on a dime.

I have to say, for the second time, I was completely selfish in this relationship. I was very demanding. I simply sat and told her what I liked, and didn't like, and it was all about me. I don't think I cared one bit about her needs. Of course, now that I know those needs weren't being met, I don't care. I'm disgusted, I'm cut off from the memories, and deprived of pleasure I haven't enjoyed yet.

The hell with it. I know for a fact that there are plenty more where she came from. There are countless others who are just sitting out there, and they are all meant to serve one purpose: meet my needs and demands, or be discarded, simple as that. You can't perform? Consider yourself replaced. Only, with each repeat, I vest a little less hope. I won't treasure those memories as deeply, because I know that, in reality, they can be taken away on a moments notice. Replace and move on, each new relationship will be more clear-cut each time. I don't care as much now as I did the first time, and, well, too bad. You didn't live up to expectations, you're gone.

Now, before anyone starts yelling too loudly, or feeling so sorry for my apparently shallow attitude, please remember who is writing this.

Unfortunately, the relationship I'm talking about is with my cable DVR box. Second one to fail in as many months. I'm not sure if I'm feeling much love for Comcast these days. Comcast: your Scientific Atlanta 8300HD Cable DVR box sucks.

And save the effort. I already placed an order for A Life.

I Did good Well Today

Today was about what I didn't do.

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Saw that forecast, and didn't scream and cry. Just ordered some ark lumber.

Had some flank steak, did NOT eat entire thing.

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Bought two bags of these bad-boys,

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The super-size!

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Did NOT throw fit when I shared 1/2 of a bag with the floor!

One that got away, I'm taking bets on how many sunflowers I'll be harvesting from the floors in this dump...

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Did not get mad or make terroristic threats to Comcast. I programmed some recordings before going out today. Came home to discover this:

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Apparently Comcast's cable went out of service, again.

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DID manage to drive about 50 miles, but...

  • did NOT run anyone off the road

  • did NOT even curse, swear or yell anything at anyone

Overall, a good day.

Monday, August 20, 2007

212 and Counting

Sorry, Nance, you're getting a lot of airtime here today.

In regard to my post "212 Degrees, I Believe?", Nancy said, "In general, I agree about offering solutions when criticizing or complaining...yet I see (rather frequently) that it is not always possible. We are ALL guilty of that. I don't think we shouldn't complain if we don't have a solution. Sometimes we just know that something is not working.

I don't want to ever give the impression that I don't complain or criticize. Believe me, those things make up way too much of my activity in life. I feel safe when I go off on one of my tangents about inept drivers, and criticizing lousy road-mates because I do believe I offer constructive criticism in that I say, "pay attention, know the rules of the road, obey them, hang up the cell phone and drive." I firmly believe that when I spout out against them, I'm offering a viable solution, so it's not a matter of not criticizing, it's a matter of offering what my opinion states to be constructive criticism. I see a problem, I offer my take on what to do to fix it.

Sometimes, when one doesn't know what to do...doing nothing is best. So true. I complain about the weather, especially when it rains on weekends. I think we're all better off with the fact that there is nothing I can do to control or change the weather, trust me, because Mother Nature knows best. Or at least better than me, so at times it is better to do nothing.

I'm often hesitant to comment in your blog because I know you are looking for people to back up what they say...and I can't always do that. But despite that, I do have opinions...and they're not always "wrong", any more than they are "right"

I just happen to like it better when someone offers an opinion that's followed with some reasoning. The beauty of opinions is that, by definition, there are no "right or wrong" opinions, but if I, as a Cleveland Indians fan, state my opinion that Red Sox fans are idiots simply because they don't root for the Indians, I'm trying to make my opinion your opinion,(after all, disagreeing would make you an idiot, right?) and without very much sound reasoning. No one who is a Sox fan is going to read my opinion and decide that I'm right, and discard their Sox loyalty. If, however, I state that my opinion is that the Indians are a better team because...and then fill in my interpretation of various statistics to back it up, at least my argument might have some credence.

Years ago, two boxers, Tommy Hearns and Marvelous Marvin Hagler, put on a show that boxing historians agree were three of the best rounds in boxing history. Hagler outlasted Hearns, fought off Hearns best attack, and won the fight. I happened to be a big fan of Tommy Hearns, but I had to concede that, at least on that night, anyone whose opinion was that Hagler was the better fighter, had some reasoning to back that opinion up, and while I didn't like it, I had to agree that their argument had a lot of merit.

My problem isn't with people's opinions. I'd never tell someone that she isn't entitled to have an opinion. I love to debate, and the root of debate is initially opinion, a personal opinion, one that a good debater goes about defending with solid argument.

My problem, in that article, is with Maher. He is a comedian who has moved from the comedic stage into the political arena. He has ordained himself a political expert, but one whose sole strategy is to condemn the current body politic. He doesn't offer any alternative ideas, he simply rips up the status quo. He has a nationally televised forum from which to spout his opinions, and he wants his opinion to be your opinion, but he doesn't offer any sound reasoning to back up his claims of superiority. He tells those who might not agree that they are stupid. He tells us that people who base any decision on religious beliefs are fools, but doesn't have anything solid to back that up. Maher stated that Faith is flawed because you can't prove what you believe. Now, my argument with him is that he obviously doesn't understand the concept of "faith", and that people who don't believe in the existence of a higher power can't prove that it doesn't exist either. He says, agree with me or you are an idiot.(And yes, he actually said that) In my opinion, that doesn't form the basis of any reasonable debate.

Suppose I said, "I'm a Catholic. Mary is a Mormon. Mary is an idiot because she is not a Catholic." Where is the room for debate there? It's a statement that is not backed with any sound reasoning, I'm simply passing judgment on someone, and I'm not offering any good ideas as to why my religion is superior. I'm simply stating that it is what it is. Would you buy that from me?

I believe that there is a major difference between me offering my opinion and solutions on what I believe is wrong with a lot of drivers out there, writing in a blog that's read by barely enough people to fill Maher's studio audience, and Bill Maher taking a national stage and offering his political criticism. I don't believe for a minute that Maher should be silenced. I believe he is extremely intelligent, and he has a gift of humor that I don't possess. I watch him every chance I get because I want to hear what he has to say. My frustration as expressed in that article is that, "Hey Bill, you've made it clear that Bush is bad, our foreign policy is bad, and that this country is currently in a hand-basket headed for destination unknown. You've ordained yourself an expert, and said that everything we do is wrong. So, then, what in your expert opinion should we do?" That wouldn't necessarily sway my opinion, but it would make for a much more intelligent debate.

Part of the reason I rarely take the Iraq War decisions to task in my writing here is that I really don't know what the hell we should have done, or should do going forward. My head tells me, "let's just bomb the bad guys into oblivion". My heart tells me that that is not a very rational position. For one thing, I don't know if we can even identify the bad guys at this point. I believe that any solution I would offer would be based on bigotry and prejudice, and violence. That's not going to help anything much.

Let me ask you a question, maybe to help clarify what I was saying. Suppose you're in the middle of doing a sculpture. You've never quite tried a sculpture of this type, and maybe it's not going so well. Two people come into the room. The first says, "Nancy, that sculpture sucks. It's ugly and doesn't look like anything," and then he leaves. The second says, "Hey Nancy, your sculpture sucks. But I see what you're trying to accomplish, I think. Maybe if you pick up this chisel and use it to form the outline a little better by doing this or that, you might be on your way to a better sculpture." Now both people said your sculpture sucks. But whose opinion are you at least going to feel somewhat more inclined to engage?

Just my humble two cents.

Some Follow-Up

In regard to my previous post, "Where to Go?", Nancy said...

ok, 2 questions:

1) Are you saying that the war, even in hindsight, was and is still, a good idea?

Fortunately, as they say, hindsight is always 20/20. This Iraqi war is obviously a mess we might have been better off avoiding, an opinion I can state because I have in my possession the knowledge of what's actually unfolded, and I don't think the whole thing is going according to the original plan. I think that the original intention was a good idea, but it has shown that the "American Way" isn't always the "Best Way." I do believe that the world is much better off without Saddam Hussein in power, and removing him was a choice that our leaders, at least at the time, all thought was a good idea at the time it was initiated. I believe that the national sentiment at the time was in favor of that, because the governmental engine that we elected voted to back that initiative.

If you ask me where I think we messed up, it was that we didn't exactly have a rock-solid plan as to what to do once we did remove Hussein. I think that's only in part because we didn't develop the "exit strategy" we should have, but the situation also stands as testimony to the resolve of a good amount of anti-American factions.

2) What exactly to you think we should do if we are attacked again? Or how do you think we could prevent it? (oh...without killing innocent people, including our troops) I believe that if we are attacked again, and I do believe we will be, somewhere down the line (I just don't possess the power to predict that event, because if I did, believe me, it wouldn't happen), we have to put the decision in the hands of those we elect to make those decisions. What we learned from 9/11 is that 9 or 10 people could accomplish what thousands before them couldn't, and that was to attack us at will on our own soil, and that we don't need to live in fear so much of another military power sinking its teeth into us, but of another "9 or 10" people with evil intentions. But I do believe that the problem is, going forward, the decisions of the people we elect to make those decisions are going to be seriously inhibited. As I said, any sane person is going to be somewhat hesitant to make a decision and go forth with it, because of the level of second-guessing that has developed in this country. But to give a solid answer, I think what I would do is, put my faith in the people I helped elect at that point to make a decision, and then stand by them throughout. I say that because those elected people are going to commit our military to carry out whatever decision they make, and the most important element here, for me, is to let those troops understand that they are risking their lives with the full faith and support of the very people they are out defending.

I've heard the term "unfortunate truth" a lot lately, and I do believe that an unfortunate truth for us as Americans, is that we are not going to be able to completely avoid the loss of "innocent lives" both on our soil and abroad. We're fighting a whole new kind of enemy these days, one that is not a super-power, one that is not organized, one that is not contained by any borders, but one that is apparently a whole lot more fearsome because it doesn't have a face or a name. But I am inherently a "team player" and if I put my faith in a leader by electing him or her, I have to be ready to stand by that leader when the decisions aren't so clear-cut, and when they occasionally don't work out to my benefit. Sometimes, reality sucks, but it doesn't stop being reality just because I don't like it. I have to stand by my elected officials or run against them and make my own policy. I don't think I'm equipped to do that, which is why that article wasn't written to question them so much, but to oppose the ideas of what I called The Armchair Quarterbacks (AQ's as I called them). I don't have the answers, which is why I need to put my faith in those I vote for. They state their case, and I decide whether to vote for them.

I want to borrow from Dennis Miller here a moment. Miller said that he was glad that Bush had the job at the time as opposed to John Kerry, because Kerry is a "chess player" who thinks out every move, and the ramifications of those moves, whereas Bush is a "checker player", and when Bush "comes across an asshole, he jumps him," and that at the time, the world needed the checker player when it came to Saddam Hussein. I very much agree with that sentiment. There are times when we as a country are going to have to make the decision to do tough things, and dealing with Hussein was one of those times. Hussein was an ugly problem that could not be dealt with in a pretty way.

I've yet to hear a Republican NOR a Democrat answer that one to my satisfaction.


PS. If you comment here, please email me your reply. Thanks! :)

And hey, here it is, cause, what happens in Stupidsheet stays in Stupidsheet! :)

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Where To Go?

The thing that bothers me about the "War on Terror" is that we ourselves are going to be part of the problem for a long time to come.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketBarack Obama stated that he believes we need to go where the terrorists are. He was under fire recently for suggesting we attack terrorist strongholds in Pakistan. But I think we've created a big, ugly monster in our own country. It's a credibility problem caused not so much by pure lies, but also by a segment of our culture that thrives on the whole idea of Conspiracy Theories and the like. It's rather simplistic, but suppose tomorrow, the Iranian military sailed right up to the coast and was preparing to launch a series of nuclear missiles. Through good fortune, our own military is ready and crushes the attempt, and the whole thing is captured on film for the world to see.

There will be at least three reactions from people, aside from the rational one. 1. Some people will say we somehow deserve to be attacked. 2. Others will say that the Iranians weren't really planning an attack and 3. Those who will say that the whole thing was staged, and that it's just the American Government starting trouble for oil.

And I don't care what happens on this planet. If our country does come under attack, unless the leader of some country stands up and openly declares war on the USA, we are screwed. The armchair quarterbacking in our country has been taken to a completely new level. If we track the attackers to, say, Pakistan and go in there, the AQ's will say we should be in Afghanistan. If we chase them to Afghanistan, the AQ's will be standing there saying how they would have gone right into Iran.

And God help us if there's a major attack if and while there's a Democrat in the Oval Office. Any sane person would be completely hesitant to act, because of the thrashing Bush has taken. I mean if there's a Republican president, well, business as usual.

212 Degrees I Believe?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketI have to admit, that I don't think anyone gets my blood boiling faster than Bill Maher. I caught him last night on Larry King Live.

I believe dissidence is good in government. I am completely aware that the best way to keep a governing body on its toes is to allow criticism and disagreement. But there are some people who've made careers out of offering criticism, without offering sound alternatives solutions.

In my experience (emphasis on my) the Left and other anti-Bush factions, are very crafty. They will say things that start like, "What this country needs", then they will tell you what they think we need, only they don't get you to the part where they tell you how they will actually give you that.

Maher is a classic practitioner. If you ask him what he would have done differently, maybe concerning Iraq, he will give you a litany of everything that was done wrong, and then that's it. He tells you how badly everyone does it, but never quite gets to the point where he lays out his own plan. He makes a whole bunch of intelligent-sounding assertions that he can't quite prove. And by "prove" I don't mean make you sound ridiculous or illogical for not believing him, or the old Rosie O'Donnell tactic ("USE GOOGLE"). No, you made the statement, you present the proof. Telling me to educate myself is another bullshit pseudo-intellectual tactic. Like I said, you're making the statement, you show me the proof of your conclusion.

Maher was put on that very spot. A caller challenged Maher, saying, "You've made a career of bashing everyone, and everything. What would you have done differently? SPECIFICS!" And Maher did the usual anti-Bush move. Went through the list of everything he wouldn't have done, and then, as usual, stopped just short of saying what he would have done. Missed it by that much!

And then he said, that Religion is stupid. That's when I decided to avoid the stroke. I changed the channel.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketI like the scene in "Full Metal Jacket" when the Drill Instructor storms into the barracks, grabs an empty garbage can and baton and gives the recruits a rude awakening.

I'd be in serious trouble in that situation. Be doing a lot of push-ups in mud puddles. You could time my wakeups with a calendar. No matter how much sleep I get, it's 10,000 snooze-alarms, then that sit-up-on-the-bed and wish for death. I am just not an up and at 'em type. I wish I were.

And just getting me to come out of my coma is a stunt in itself. I have honestly slept through an earthquake, a fact that my mom began predicting when I was 10 years old. Took a while, but it happened. I have two alarm clocks in the room, as well as a TV that turns on loud and clear. Emphasis on loud. There's even a Web service at where you can program telephone wake up calls. I usually start at 4:30 so that I'm up by 5:30. Good think I live alone. Or maybe why I live alone.

Did I mention I snore?

I just get hotter by the minute, huh?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Looking a Gift Horse In The Mouth? is a humanitarian initiative fostered by Kevin Bacon, of the "6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon" fame. He got the program started based on the concept of connecting every charity to one location. Really quickly, the way the program works is, you create an online "badge" featuring your favorite charity. If your "badge" inspires someone to donate to your cause, they can simply click on your badge, and they'll be brought to a central site where they can place that donation, and the

money they give, gets allocated to your charity. Collectively, the program has gathered nearly $800,000 in donations.

That can never be seen as a bad thing, ever. Charity is good.

And I know it's not proper to look a gift horse in the mouth, so to speak, but the site features the "Top 10" donation-getters. These folks have gotten the most individual donations for their charities, thus the spot on the page. But something bothers me about what I saw in the Top 10.
Take a look:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Am I missing something? Did we forget about people? I've had pets all my life, in one form or another, and I have a dog now that I truly love. But, I don't know...

Like It Is?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketWhy does it seem to me now that when someone says they are being "honest", someone's feelings get hurt? Or something really nasty gets said. I always remember my early school days and learning about "Honest Abe", and how honesty was a noble thing.

I remember years ago enrolling in a college program that required us to work at a Drug Rehab center. We received a somewhat brief education on "drugs" from a very knowledgeable woman. One of the things she said that stuck with me was "The worst thing about heroin is, it works." Pretty much what kept the addicts coming back for more. It worked, problem was, eventually it worked too well, to the detriment of the user.

So yeah, the point was that not all drugs that worked were good for you. And while I agree that honesty really is a good and noble thing, I do believe that it has its place. And it's not always a good thing, particularly when it's used as a weapon.

Think of someone posting photos of their kids, for example. Yeah, maybe those kids aren't models, but to that Mom or Dad, they are the most beautiful things on earth. Some might see those kids as hideous, but decorum dictates you keep that opinion to yourself, right? Telling that person their kids look like the southern end of a northbound mule might be "honest", but who the hell needs that?

To me, there are two levels of honesty. The important kind is the useful kind. If someone is entering their work in a baking contest, only the brownies taste like road apples, honesty might be in order to prevent hurt feelings or embarrassment. And it could lead to an improved product. After all, the Wright Brothers didn't get it right the first time, right?

The less important kind is the honesty that is wielded as an instrument of hurt, spoken for no other reason than to bring someone else down, or to achieve a sense of superiority in oneself.

I notice that with people who are honest, don't need to broadcast it or add it to their resume. People who make a point of telling everyone how "honest" they are are usually masking a complete sense of tact. In other words, to me it's like wearing a T-Shirt that says "I'm a Jerk!"

People who drink too much tend to get "honest". Alcohol reduces inhibition, and that usually lets someone know what the drunk really thinks. So then, how come we don't usually promote drunken behavior?

I don't think that when Honest Abe was in business, the concept of "brutal honesty" was any better than it is now. We've somehow molded honesty into a weapon and an absolute. I don't think someone telling me I look nice, when I don't, is a bad thing. Sure, telling someone you love them when you don't is a lie, and it's got some serious ramifications. Telling Mom the soup is delicious when it tastes like dishwater is class and tact, and hey, there's always the next meal.

Sure, sometimes honesty is painful. But it shouldn't be the only description. In my opinion, the wisest of people know when or when not to speak the truth.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Holy Cow!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketA local legend has left us today.

Former NY Yankee ballplayer and legendary broadcaster Phil Rizzuto died at the age of 89. Rizzuto was a player for 13 years and then followed that with a 40 year career in the Yankees' broadcast booth. Anyone who ever listened to him is very familiar with his cry of "Holy Cow" whenever he got excited. Phil was one-of-a-kind, he never apologized for his bias toward the Yankees, and he would let the players know when he was dissatisfied with their performance. His broadcasts were never dull.

He made it into the Hall of Fame in 1994, and finally retired from the Yankee booth in 1996. He was missed then, he'll be missed now. I have a feeling there is going to be one heck of a reunion today in Baseball Heaven. God bless the Scooter!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Made In China

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketZhang Shuhong, who co-owned Lee Der Industrial Co. Ltd., killed himself at a warehouse over the weekend, days after China announced it had temporarily banned exports by the company, the Southern Metropolis Daily said.

Lee Der made 967,000 toys recalled earlier this month by Mattel Inc. because they were made with paint found to have excessive amounts of lead. The plastic preschool toys, sold under the Fisher-Price brand in the U.S., included the popular Big Bird, Elmo, Dora and Diego characters.

It was among the largest recalls in recent months involving Chinese products, which have come under fire for globally for containing potentially dangerous high levels of chemicals and toxins.

I wonder how many of us really look at a package to see its country of origin. Might be a good time to start, huh? "Made in China" takes on a whole new meaning these days.

Oh It's Coming!

We're not quite yet in political full-swing just yet. It's coming, count on that. 10 billion tv ads, radio spots. It's out there bearing down on us.

I don't really like to talk politics, but to me, it's like flying. I don't think very many of us can get through our whole life without boarding a plane. Politics is like that for me. I'll talk about it, I just won't enjoy it much.

We don't cater too well to advice about our love lives, and I think political choice is just as personal a thing. But people will gladly put their two cents in on your politics just as quickly as they'll offer unsolicited love-life advice.

My problem isn't people's ideologies so much, it's how so many folks not only want to persuade you to their cause, they'll damn near jam it down your throat if you let them. I'm very resistant to political "education", at least when it's being provided by lay people. I want to hear what each and every viable candidate has to say. It's how I make my choice. What I don't need to hear are those people who are just bursting at the seams with rhetoric or scare tactics. As soon as someone drops keywords like "Fascism" on me, they might as well continue the conversation with a fire hydrant; they'll get a better response.

And the Internet hasn't made it any better. I'm up to here with these fanatics out there telling me to "Google this, Google that", shutttttttttt up. You're no smarter than I am, and spare me the "you need to educate yourself" crap. The Internet is home to way too much extremism, and I don't want a one-sided education, ok? I can type things into Google, same as you, and come up with just as much information to debunk your ideas as I could to support them.

When that November day comes, I am going into the voting booth alone. I won't be voting against George Bush that day, I'll be voting for whichever candidate has convinced me that he's going to set us on the course we need to be riding on. If some yo-yo is going to drive me straight into a brick wall, it's not going to feel any better because it wasn't Bush at the wheel, ok? It's going to hurt. So I want to avoid that the best I can.

To me, the most responsible voter is the one who spends the time between now and election day making up his own mind, rather than trying to make mine up for me. I don't think that's unreasonable.

Friday, August 10, 2007


I remember once describing a woman:"Being with her is like getting beaten with a hammer; it feels so good when it stops." And it's true, sometimes something feels so good when it stops, a splinter in your finger, an annoying dripping faucet, finding a bathroom before it's too late.

I was whining about a toothache one time in the dentist chair. The dentist said I wasn't being a baby, and that when you have one, you don't care if World War III is kicking off at that moment. You just want it to stop. Gives you perspective, right?

Of course, perspective doesn't have to only result from pain. Someone getting their TV or computer fixed might not seem like news to you or me, but to that person it's the best thing they've had all day.

I think everyone I read or know does a great job in the comforting department. It's not hard to empathize with someone in trouble, particularly if we know what they're going through, first-hand.

What I've noticed lately, is that when people post happy stories, they ARE being met with some enthusiasm and congratulations, etc. And I think that is so great. You know if someone takes the time to post a picture of himself/herself in a new dress, or suit, that they are feeling really pretty/handsome at the moment that shutter opens. Now of course, to you or me, it's a dress. But to them it's a big deal. So letting them hear a kind word is taking a look from their perspective, and acting on it. And I think that is so very cool. You know when that person is getting those compliments, they are eating that up. How can you walk away feeling badly about anything when someone is that happy?

Yeah, I know this is all very Mr. Rodgers right now, but I don't care. I feel happy for someone right now, and, well, tough $#@$ !!!


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketAnyone who uses Blogger much knows what that is.

A friend of mine stopped here yesterday. Quick social call to say hi because she knows I'm working on this license exam. She asked to use the liptop a second (yes, Lippy has a liptop). She brought up google to use it a minute.

I have the "auto-fill" feature turned on, and apparently when you type in those word verifications in blogger, those get committed to "auto-fill" memory too. So she kept getting all these whacked-out word suggestions when she'd start to type.

"What the hell kind of words have you been typing in here?" she asked.

Now this woman is very, very pragmatic. The Web is not something to be used for anything other than work. I don't think she even knows what a "Blog" is. I thought about what explaining the origin of those gibberish words would involve, and I just thought it was simpler to cut-and-run.

"Oh, yeah, I type a lot of nonsense," I answered. Sometimes a computer isn't the quickest thing in the room.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Customer Service Re-Visited

Well, the Love Affair with my Cable DVR hit a bump in the road. Seems she likes to take frequent breaks during the day. A lot of the programs I set to record don't get recorded as a result. I decided to try Comcast's Online Tech Support since being on hold online is a little less restrictive than sitting on the phone. It's an online chat room, pretty much.

The times were posted with each message. Make note:

23:26:40: clocked into Comcast Visual Chat
user James_ has entered room

James(Wed Aug 8 23:27:48 EDT 2007)>I have the Scientific Atlanta 8300HD. At least once a day, sometimes more, the box will click, shut down, and go into re-boot mode. It will then be offline for 10-20 minutes until it reboots.

analyst Madilyn.4814 has entered room

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:35:02 EDT 2007)>Hello James_, Thank you for contacting Comcast Live Chat Support. My name is Madilyn.4814. Please give me one moment to review your information.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:35:04 EDT 2007)>I’d be happy to assist you this evening!

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:35:16 EDT 2007)>thanks

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:36:09 EDT 2007)>Please hold. I am working on your issue.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:37:37 EDT 2007)>Please hold. I am working on your issue.

Please stop typing that and work on the issue, k? Thanksssss

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:39:12 EDT 2007)>Thank you for holding, James. For security reasons, please provide your Comcast account number listed on your monthly statement.

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:40:32 EDT 2007)> XXXXX XXXXXX-XX (sorry, not givin' my number out here)

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:40:45 EDT 2007)>What is your unit number, James?

Takes me a minute to get across the room to look at the cable box...handicapped, ya know how it is...

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:41:03 EDT 2007)>Scientific Atlanta 8300HD

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:41:20 EDT 2007)>Thank you.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:41:50 EDT 2007)>I meant your address unit number, James. Sorry if I wasn't clear.

Isn't it funny when something makes you spit your drink out?

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:42:18 EDT 2007)>100 Stupid Street, Idiot USA (can't publish my address, right?)

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:43:59 EDT 2007)>Thank you.

10 minutes in...we both know my address, ahem, unit, number.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:44:00 EDT 2007)>Please hold. I am working on your issue.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:45:52 EDT 2007)>James, thank you for your patience.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:46:57 EDT 2007)>Have you disconnected the box for a few minutes or had a signal sent to the box to reset it?

Gulp--NO! Crawl across the room...

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:47:13 EDT 2007)>I have disconnected it

15 seconds...not bad...I didn't actually have to make it all the way to the box. I just flipped the wall switch to power everything down

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:48:32 EDT 2007)>Can you plug it back in for me, please?

SH*T! Crawl crawl crawl...

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:48:46 EDT 2007)>Please provide the last 4 digits of your box serial number. It will be on a label at the bottom or back of the box.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:49:04 EDT 2007)>The serial numbe should start with an S, James?

At this point, I wanted to make sure that she wasn't asking for the last for digits of my Social Security box serial number. :)

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:49:33 EDT 2007)>one moment

DAMMIT! I just got back here! CRAWL CRAWL CRAWL. note: this now involves me crawling behind the TV unit...

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:53:38 EDT 2007)>SABPDKGTW N003577XXX

This was the number that was micro-printed on a tiny postage-stamp-size label on the unit

Only took 4 minutes. Dark back there.

LOL, also note that I gave her the whole serial number, not just the last 4 digits. Wasn't taking any chances.

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:54:10 EDT 2007)>the box has been disconnected and plugged back in

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:54:05 EDT 2007)>Thank you.

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:54:34 EDT 2007)>I am going to send a signal to it, James. Is the TV on too?

Yes. (Thank GOD for remote controls...)

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:54:41 EDT 2007)>yes

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:56:22 EDT 2007)>The signal went through fine. If this doesn't improve the connection, please don't hesitate to swap the box at the Comcast office or chat with us to get a technician to come and check the box out or swap it at your home.

James_(Wed Aug 8 23:57:00 EDT 2007)>thank you

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:57:08 EDT 2007)>You're welcome!

Madilyn.4814(Wed Aug 8 23:57:09 EDT 2007)>Do you have any other Comcast issues I can assist you with?

I resisted asking her for directions to Pittsburgh.

Just as a footnote, it's now 12:15 AM, and the cable box still hasn't come back online. :)

Please Hold...

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketEvery generation like to talk about their own "good old days" and ours is no different. But one thing that I have to say my parents' generation had better than us was "customer service". I grew up in a house with a Mom who was very adept at dealing with customer service. If someone failed to give her what she paid for, she knew about it. And she would take her case to whatever level she had to in order to get satisfaction. We kids used to tease her about her "Poison Pen Letters", but when she talked, people listened. She was good at getting her money's worth, and then some. You didn't cheat Mom.

I don't think that level of customer care exists anymore. I remember one of the first signs of that was the so-called "Lemon Laws" for automobiles. Imagine, the government had to enact a law to force car manufacturers to deliver what the customer paid for. And I remember one time trying to get tech support from Microsoft relating to a faulty product they'd put out, and being told I had to pay for customer support. Seemed a little funny at the time, since I thought I purchased customer support when I bought the damned product.

That's not the case anymore. It used to be "caveat emptor"-buyer beware-but now it's "buyer be damned." It's almost as though the manufacturers and retailers are telling us that successful purchases of their products and services is a luck-of-the-draw process. Plumbers and electricians are notorious for ridiculous prices, building and home contractors are famous for signing the contracts and then never coming back. And tech-support is synonymous with hours of frustration.

And companies don't care anymore. Look at Dell, America Online and their outsourced customer service. English as a Second Language was something taught in this country to help immigrants assimilate into the culture, but now it's a fact of life because no one seems to speak it anymore.

But they don't have to care. What are the consequences of selling inferior products in this country? More sales. People accept bad service as the status quo, simple as that. Occasionally a company might lose and have to give a little money back, but, as a whole, there will be plenty of money piling in behind it. Microsoft basically says, "Our way, or the Highway" and the on-ramps are empty folks. America Online lies, flat-out, but their customers aren't the subscribers anymore, the advertisers are. And there's no shortage of ads on anything AOL. And the gasoline manufacturers can just keep raising prices, without good cause, and people will just keep buying it. Exxon says it doesn't worry about "Being Green" because they make more than enough money without doing so.(they admit that here, read it if you want)

It's what we live with now. People lie down and take it. The earnings of these sub-par companies prove that. Cannot argue with success, right?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Both Sides Now

There are stories it's just better not to tell. I used to talk so much on my old Journal about the way my marriage ended, how it felt, etc. And I realized that wasn't very fair, because like it or not, you paint a picture that's very one-dimensional, and of course, people who like me or read me could get a very skewed picture of the situation. I could wind up presenting an unflattering and unfair description of her.

I began to lay off that issue altogether for those reasons. She is a very nice person who you'd all probably like very much. She's very sociable and friendly, and is someone her friends know they can count on. She is a very good mother, who sees eye-to-eye with me on child-raising matters. We both agreed a very long time ago that those children needed to be Priority 1. It just had to be that way.

I think being very practical and pragmatic is a good thing. We work together with those kids, and I'm as involved in their lives as possible. People have remarked on-sometimes in a complimentary fashion, sometimes not-my involvement not only with the kids, but with her. We were friends before we were married, and I like to think we are friends now.

The only thing is, though, I didn't want that to end. I really didn't, and I did what I could. It became obvious that we weren't hurting each other so much, but that it was affecting those children, so I accepted the inevitable.

It's been 7 years now. The thing is, every night that I go to sleep without those kids near me, it hurts as much now as it did that very first night. I have a picture of them right next to my bed, and it's the last thing I see before I turn out the light. How can it be that my mind, heart and body haven't gotten used to it? My physical body came apart over the last two years, and as painful as that was, the brain adjusts to it, and it doesn't seem as intense. Why doesn't that work for this?

I've not dated, at least not seriously. It's not that I didn't have the chance; I've met some wonderful women, but for one reason or another it didn't happen. I made up my mind that my kids wouldn't be kids for long, and I was going to focus my time and energy on being their Daddy. People don't like that, for some reason, and they think you're lonely, and want to help with that. But every minute with those kids is so valuable to me that I don't like to let one go by. It wouldn't be fair to a woman to have a relationship that way. And honestly, I don't want to answer to anyone when it comes to my kids. They'll outgrow weekends with Daddy, and I'm aware of that, and maybe then I can think about other things.

It hurts a lot, and it doesn't get better. I'm assuming it never will, but the way I'm doing it now is the best pain relief I can have.

There's more to this, but I think I'm done for now.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Stupid Almighty

There will be no pictures on this entry. There will be no pictures because the site where I host my pictures is down for maintenance. I decided to take a break from my current educational process because the site from which I get my testing materials is down for maintenance. During my break, I intended to sit and catch a movie on Comcast OnDemand, but they're having problems, and the OnDemand service is down for maintenance.

I remember the movie "Bruce Almighty", and laughing because the main character reminded me a little of me, always complaining that someone was out to get me whenever something would go ridiculously wrong.

Now I don't believe that any Higher Power is out to make my life miserable. I do, however, remember someone once saying, "You're not paranoid if they really are out to get you."

My problem, really, is this incredible sense of bad timing. I get to the 24 hour store in an emergency, the day after they stop being open for 24 hours. The words "sold out", "come back tomorrow", and "I'm very sorry, Sir" are very familiar to me.

When I leave my development, I'm forced to go left toward a traffic light that you time with a calendar. Every time I turn out onto that street, it's just in time to see it turn red. That's usually when I begin to eat my 5 course breakfast, uninterrupted. I can even shave and read "War and Peace" in that time.

No, I think the Deity has better things to do than make little torments for me to endure. My problem really is, that I've never quite understood the truism that "Timing Is Everything".

Maybe I'll get a new watch.


Let's See How My Predictions Play Out, Summer 2007

I was always a big fan of time-capsule type stuff, so I consented to this meme. If you do it too, post a link in the comments!

1. Who do you think will be elected President in 2008?

Barack Obama

2. What Baseball team will win the 2007 World Series?

Gotta go with my heart...the Cleveland Indians

3. This time next year, do you think you'll still be keeping a Blog/Journal?

I hope to.

4. Do you plan on being heavier, thinner or about the same weight in 1 year?

About the same, I guess. Hopefully a little thinner, though.

5. On December 31st, 2007 will you be able to look back and say you kept any of your New Year's Resolutions?

I sure will be.

6. What is currently your favorite TV show, and will it be around in a year?

My favorite shows are already "gone", they're in syndication, so I'm watching repeats now!

7. Will you have completed a planned major life change (education, degree, marriage, birth) within a year from now?

If I stay on track, yes! I'm working on it now!

8. Who is the most likely to make a turnaround in the year to come?
a. Britney Spears

b. Paris Hilton

c. Lindsay Lohan

d. None of the above

Unfortunately, I'm going with d.

9. What would you like to see different in you this time next year?

I'd like to be less of a physical wreck, but we'll see. Walking would be nice!

10. Do you think the US economy will be better or worse this time next year?

I'm going to say better.

11. Do you think US gas prices will be higher or lower in July 2008?

Lower. I think this will all wash out within a year.

12. What's something you haven't tried that you want to within a year?

Visit Indiana.

13. If you could talk to the 2008 "You" right now, what do you think would be the first thing that "you" would say to you now?

"Unfortunately, pal, you're still a nitwit."

14. What public figure would you hope to be seeing less of in a year? How about more of?

1. Paris Hilton

2. Rudy Giuiliani

15. Will the next American Idol be a male or a female?

Time for a guy!

16. Make a small resolution now, post it. Come back in a year and see how you did.

I'd like to get my muscles back to pre-injury form! I've been working out...we'll see.

Accent! And a Little Peeve...

We here in the Northeast take some crap about our "accents", NY, Brooklyn, Boston and all, and it's pretty comical. But some of you Left Coasters have some accent stuff of your own going on.

I spent a late night with my kids and nieces last night. They were watching their various teen stuff last night, and one thing that really hit my ear is the way they say certain things, particularly around L.A.

One girl said something along the lines of, "It's our biggest upgrade ever", only it sounded to me more like "it's our beggest upgrade avar."

And they say "thanks" or "thank you" and it sounds like "thinks" or "think you". Not to forget "Hower you?"

And on other related note, what's going on with a lot of women and their vocal habits? I'm hearing this so much lately, and yikes, it's like nails on a blackboard. Listen to this woman a minutes, paying attention to the way her voice goes at the end of every sentence.

When did this get started, and what's up with it?

Saturday, August 04, 2007

BlogHer and a First-Hand Tale

There's a club I'm not allowed in, but one that seems great nonetheless. Shash, over at Diary of a Crazed Mommy Wrote of her experiences at the BlogHer Convention in Chicago, and it seemed like a blast. She shared stories and photos, and it left me very envious.

I think it's a great story to read, and I hope someone gets a convention going that maybe I can attend.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Jimmy Come Stupid

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketThat is a Betamax machine. I owned one of those.

That's just the first in a long line of Stupid Purchases I have made in my life. If I'd have been alive sooner, you can bet I'd have been the proud owner of a Ford Edsel, too. I have this incredibly accurate talent for buying products that are destined to be on the "discontinued" list.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketThink I'm kidding? I have a Sega Dreamcast. The week after I got my apartment, I shopped for things for the kids to play with, and that was a proud achievement. The week after that, Sega didn't only announce that they were discontinuing it, they published that info for all the world to see what a dope I am.

I had a laser disc player. The one with the 12-inch discs, and the 12 month lifespan.

I remember buying a Chevrolet Celebrity because I thought it was cool. Oh, about a month later, the local Livery service equipped its fleet with 25 of those. I mean, what woman doesn't swoon over being picked up in A TAXI?

I bought a fancy TV about 45 minutes before the stores started selling HDTV.

I developed an incredible liking for such things as Drake's Frosty Devils and Creme Cups. Never heard of them? Yeah...

The list is endless. 8-track tape players, Commodore 64, Apple IIgs. I just don't think we need this entry to be endless. You just might want to pray that I don't like your Blog, ok?


Hi there, Lurkers. Time to say "hello, Stupid!"

Of all the things you could say about me, "shy" is definitely not on the list. And I am not shy about liking interaction on a Blog, that's for sure.

I have been getting emails telling me that people can't comment on this Blog, and I'm not sure why. I like comments, and I won't lie. Hey, it's half the fun, so...

If you come here and read, why not give commenting a shot? I'd love to hear from you. If you like what I say, agree or disagree, hate what I say, please let me know. I'm not 100% sure why this Blog isn't taking comments. I'll just offer some quick tips here if you're having a problem.

Down at the bottom of every entry, you should see this:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Click on that.

Then you should see this:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

1. Enter whatever comment you'd like, then 2.if you don't have a Blogger account, you can still comment without passing any information along to anyone.You just click the "ANONYMOUS" button

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

3.After you check the Anonymous button the screen will look a little different...that's fine. It'll work.

4. Then just click the "PUBLISH" button, and your comment will be added.

I'd really love to hear from you on here. I like what other people have to say, and it's not only to say you agree, or like what I put here. If you don't like the blog, or disagree, I don't mind hearing that, too.

And if you're just a "lurker", it's always nice to hear from someone, so, Lurkers, today is the day!

Hope this helps. It gets lonely in here sometimes.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Flattery Works Sometimes

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketIt's nice to know that sometimes what you do matters or makes a difference now and then, ya know?

Someone thinks ol' Stupid is funny! Mammamia over at "Thank Heavens For Little Boys" decided to award me the "Smirk Instigator Award" today. Thanks so much.

The way this award works:

* Add the Award graphic to your sidebar.

* Nominate up to 3 bloggers whose entries you read on a regular basis that consistently leave you with a lingering smile (and maybe a little snicker too!).

* Don't forget to leave an explanation as to why you're awarding them the Smirk Instigator Award!

* Don't forget to leave a courtesy link back to Tusk's original post (even if it's a link through the award graphic)

So now, my nominations for Smirk Awards...

  1. Mary over at Just Mary who gets me grinning a whole lot with her clever stuff.

  2. A reciprocal award back to Mammamia because she writes some of the things that make blog-reading a happy event now and then.

  3. One of my favorite "reads for a smile" is Jaime, over at ChasenKids. She writes with a style all her own, and when she's in the mood to make you smile, look out. I love intelligent humor!

Mamma, thank you so much. That really made my night.