Posted on Thursday, January 2nd, 2014
Grass. Weed. Reefer. Pot. Skunk. Bud. Chronic. Mary Jane. Ganja. Herb. Wacky Tobacky.
No matter what your name for it, Marijuana is now legally for sale in Colorado... and will be legally for sale here in my home-state of Washington sometime this Spring.
And while I was a huge proponent of legalizing marijuana for personal use, I will undoubtedly not be partaking myself. That would be money wasted when Jägermeister already does such a great job of ejecting me from reality when I need that...
But I make no promises.
The reason being that I am so rarely able to keep my promises.
As an example, I once promised that I would no longer write editorial rebuttals on my blog because they so rarely do anything to elevate the conversation. Probably because the only reason I write editorial rebuttals in the first place is that I'm very, very angry about said editorial. And while angry rants may be a release... may be cathartic... and may even be fun... they're also overly-emotional, profanity-laden, and sometimes even incomprehensible.
Thus my promise.
A pathetic joke of an op-ed piece in The New York Times' by David Brooks was published today. It's rife with the kind of condescending rhetoric that a sane person would avoid at any cost but, like the fool I am, I dove in anyway. And, while I honestly don't give a shit about Brooks or his laughably transparent attempt at manipulating his readers, I do give a huge shit about what the fucking douche has to say about legalization supporters like me.
But, before we get there, it's important to put it into context.
The first half of his op-ed waxes poetic about how Brooks smoked pot when he was a teenager, but eventually gave it up.
And then we get to this...
"We now have a couple states — Colorado and Washington — that have gone into the business of effectively encouraging drug use. By making weed legal, they are creating a situation in which the price will drop substantially. One RAND study suggests that prices could plummet by up to 90 percent, before taxes and such. As prices drop and legal fears go away, usage is bound to increase. This is simple economics, and it is confirmed by much research. Colorado and Washington, in other words, are producing more users."
"But, of course, these are the core questions: Laws profoundly mold culture, so what sort of community do we want our laws to nurture? What sort of individuals and behaviors do our governments want to encourage? I’d say that in healthy societies government wants to subtly tip the scale to favor temperate, prudent, self-governing citizenship. In those societies, government subtly encourages the highest pleasures, like enjoying the arts or being in nature, and discourages lesser pleasures, like being stoned."
Well fuck you David Brooks.
Will legalizing marijuana bring about more drug users? I have no clue. It's not going to change my habits. Will there be people who abuse legalized marijuana? Of course there will. And they should be punished just like alcohol abusers are now. Driving while drunk or driving while stoned, it doesn't matter... you break the law you pay the price. The precedent has already been set, so move along, there's nothing to see here.
Seriously, there's nothing to see here.
Which is why, after reading this piece, I can't quite decide whether David Brooks is pretending to be so obtuse... or if he is, in fact, mentally deficient.
A few points...
If nothing else, smoking a join would sure beat lesser pleasures... like reading unintelligent op-ed trash by David Brooks.
Don't believe me? Just ask a teenage David Brooks.
Posted on Friday, January 10th, 2014
As expected, today was a lovely Spring day with gorgeous blue skies and warm temperatures. Which means the brief snow we got on Wednesday has evaporated.
For now. I'm guessing Winter... what little of it we're going to get... is still ahead. Hopefully the mountains are fairing better, or else we'll be in the middle of a drought come Summer.
In other news...
Literally in other news...
If you hadn't noticed, the whole Chris Christie Bridge Scandal exploded this week. The gist of the story is this...
The million dollar question remains... How much did Chris Christie actually know about the closure, and was he the person behind it all? He denies it, of course, but he's a fucking politician. They don't know how not to lie.
But whatever. For me, whether Christie was or wasn't behind everything is secondary to his disgusting behavior as the scandal unfolded. THIS was a top contender for the office of President of the United States?
And it got me to wondering. Are there ANY contenders for President out there that I would actually want in office come 2016? So I started looking into the top people rumored to be in contention for the job. And the answer was not at all surprising...
No. No there are not.
I think of politicians like Paul Ryan, Hilary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bobby Jindal, Andrew Cuomo, Ted Cruz, and (God help us) Marco Rubio as President of the United States and I feel like I'm going to vomit then crap my pants and die. These people are PRESIDENTIAL material?
No. No they are not.
Which means somebody has got to step up to the plate and captivate the country Real Soon Now. Preferably somebody who's not a polarizing, divisive figure. And somebody who can be tough but fair. And supports personal freedoms. And has a brain in their head.
Somebody like Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
But, you know, real.
Not that blood-sucking vampire hunting skills wouldn't be handy in Washington DC.
Posted on Sunday, January 19th, 2014
Hold on to those Super Bowl XLVII predictions... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Seahawks! And speaking of the Super Bowl... looks like the Seahawks are getting their second trip to the big game. Ironically they'll be playing the Broncos, which means it's a battle between the two states that legalized marijuana. That's quite a bowl.
• Security! Show of hands... who thinks that President Obama would have held a press conference concerning infringements on civil liberties and new restrictions on NSA surveillance if the government hadn't been caught spying on all the wrong people? Another show of hands... who thinks anything is going to actually change? Meh. It's all bullshit anyway. Politicians can say whatever they want to mollify the public, but whether it's our own government... or a company like Google... personal privacy is gone.
"Those Who Sacrifice Liberty For Security Deserve Neither" — Benjamin Franklin
• Freedom! To the surprise of absolutely nobody, Freedom Industries (the company whose badly maintained waste storage tanks are responsible for a chunk of West Virginia losing their water supply) have declared bankruptcy. Typical. Big corporations pay for politicians to advocate the elimination of environmental protections under the guise of "job creation," when everybody knows they're only angling to avoid paying for eco-friendly business practices. Then, when their reprehensible excuse for "public safety" fails, they declare bankruptcy so everybody responsible has their ass covered and everybody else gets screwed. Now that's freedom!
• Gilligan! Was sad to learn that Russell Johnson, the guy who played the professor on Gilligan's Island, has died. As the guy who could make a nuclear reactor out of a coconut and two bananas, he was always my favorite castaway...
Smooth sailing, sir.
• Betty! Very happy birthday wishes to Betty White who turned 92 this week!
Still one of my favorite actresses.
And... time to put away my bullets and pack a suitcase.
Posted on Monday, January 20th, 2014
This morning I started out the same way I begin every Martin Luther King Jr. Day... by listening to his beautiful I Have a Dream speech in its entirety.
Man, did Dr. King know how to inspire with his words. And his actions.
This year I'm seeing more and more people posting great stuff beyond his most famous speech, which is very cool...
Worth your time, all.
And if all that's not enough MLK for you, here's a great time-lapse film of an artist creating a sketch honoring him on this day set aside to remember...
And if celebrating the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. has put you in too good of a mood today, no worries. You can always count on Sarah Palin to come along a destroy everything.
I'd usually say something horribly offensive here in response the the utterly insane levels of stupidity that seems to flow endlessly from Sarah Palin's disgusting mouth... but today... today... I'm inspired to be better than that.
Posted on Wednesday, February 5th, 2014
I was a fan of the actor Philip Seymour Hoffman. Not necessarily for the bigger parts which won him accolades, but for the smaller "every-man" roles he excelled at. I also liked him when he played creepy. That was something he also did well. I was sad to learn that he died of a heroin overdose. I am sadder to hear all the horrible things being said about him over the way he died.
I don't read the gossip rags, so I don't know what they're saying compelled Philip Seymour Hoffman first try heroin.
I don't need to read the gossip rags to know why he kept doing it. Addiction is a horrific, life-destroying ordeal so overwhelming that even millions of dollars and a successful career can't save you. It's a fight that never ends, and sometimes people lose the battle... despite their best efforts. And the efforts of people around them.
Why that terrible battle is something to belittle or ridicule, I don't know.
Why somebody who couldn't overcome their problems is beneath compassion or sympathy, I don't understand.
Why people feel the need to mock and ridicule somebody's death, I don't want to understand.
My deepest sympathies to Hoffman's family, friends, and fans. I'm sorry he lost the fight. I'm even sorrier that people with no understanding of the power of addiction are so cruel in their ignorance. He will be missed.
Don't let those swill merchants rewrite you. —Lester Bangs from Almost Famous
Posted on Monday, February 17th, 2014
The mind-blowing thing about political dramas like House of Cards and Scandal is that you know... you just know... that the outrageous fiction the writers dream up for these shows undoubtedly pales in comparison to what really goes on behind closed doors in Washington, DC.
And no wonder. Politicians do all kinds of crazy shit because they can. Not that I blame them... I shudder to think about all the horrendous crap I'd get into if I had political power rendering me invincible from consequence and knew that a whole team of people are dedicated to cleaning up my messes. Seriously, what wouldn't I do under those circumstances? I just don't know. I'm not into drugs, but you don't think I'd be the first one in line to snort cocaine off a hooker's ass with John Boehner if given the chance? You're damn right I would! Drugs, hookers, theft... even murder... it's all on the table. Political power makes everything possible...
Which means it's probably good that a megalomaniac with an addictive personality like me has never run for office.
Don't be surprised if this page disappears one day in the future. I don't need it coming back to haunt me if I should ever decide to become a Congressman.
Because I'd like to think that I could resist an invitation from Paul Ryan to chase down homeless people in Foggy Bottom and taser them for sport, but you just never know what a taste of power is going to do to the mind of a politician.
If past precedent is any indication, they all end up fucked in the head sooner or later.
Posted on Saturday, February 22nd, 2014
It seems so very simple. If you have a penis, you're male. If you have a vagina, you're female. Yes, there are people who are born with/without sexual organs that challenge this two-party system, but it's a rare event and shouldn't change established conventions, right?
Unless you happen to be one of those precious few people who aren't born 100% male or 100% female, in which case being forced to check a box on a form that doesn't address your sexual identity seems unfair. Society treats your existence like some kind of a mistake, when you're just living your life the way God or biology made you. And that IS unfair.
But it's just the tip of the iceberg.
Because a person's sex... even if defined 100%... doesn't necessarily match your intrinsic sexual being. Which is where gender enters the picture.
I was once working with a team on a massive project that consumed our lives. As the days flew by, all our waking moments were spent in each other's company and we became quite close. As we were eating dinner one evening, one of the guys was lamenting how tough the gay dating scene had become. He thought that "Straight World" had more opportunities for finding someone than "Planet Gay," and he had resigned himself to dying alone. I didn't know if it's true that straights have more opportunities, but I assured him that it was no easier for dorky straight guys like myself to find somebody. One of the ladies chimed in with horror stories of being a woman in dating hell, and the competition for who had it worse was on. Until...
"You all have it easy. Try being trans and finding somebody to date!"
Turns out Margot had started out in life as Mark.
This was a bit confusing to me. Trans? Meaning transexual? What does that even mean? The extent of my knowledge on the subject was hearing a crude joke about "chicks with dicks," which meant I knew absolutely nothing. And since I hate wallowing around in ignorance... especially when it comes to somebody as great as Margot... I did the only thing I knew how.
I asked her.
A part of me worried that asking about something so personal would be offensive, but Margot wasn't offended at all. I guess she would rather somebody care enough to ask than to speculate, which is true for all of us, I suppose. And so I found out how being born with a penis is not necessarily the defining attribute of a person's sexuality. Yes, young Mark liked boys, but his feelings went beyond identifying as "gay." He was never comfortable as a boy, never felt like a boy, didn't fit in as a boy, and felt trapped pretending to be a boy. It's not that he didn't want to BE a boy... penis notwithstanding, he simply WASN'T a boy. Not on the inside. So when it came time for the boy to become a man, Mark decided his sanity and survival depended on giving up on pretending and finally embracing who he was always meant to be... which turned out to be a woman.
Which is why I just don't get the continuing drama over Facebook adding a bunch of gender identity options for people's profile page. Apparently it makes some people "uncomfortable" to be exposed to the idea that humans exist who are not decisively male or female. And because they are "uncomfortable," these humans should be forced to conform to somebody else's personal standards as to what constitutes "gender."
And how fucked up is that?
Somebody telling you how to define who you are?
I mean, seriously, how does somebody wanting to identify as "trans" affect you? It makes you "uncomfortable?" Welcome to LIFE. If it makes them happy, makes their life bearable, makes them feel true to themselves, why would you give a fuck? It's their life. They are the one who has to live with it. Just be happy they're happy and live your own life for a change.
I don't understand how anybody thinks this world would be better off if everybody conformed to the exact specifications they have in their head as "normal." I have even a harder time understanding why people who feel this way decide to force their "normal" on others. Because, hey, everybody is abnormal to somebody.
Margot went through a fucking gauntlet to get to where she needed to be. Her entire childhood was a battle that most people wouldn't survive. She faces challenges in day-to-day life that would humble most people. And yet she made it through. She's figured out what makes her happy, and is content being who she is.
I think she's fucking earned the right to define her gender however the heck she wants to.
Anybody who disagrees doesn't have the strength to put themselves in her shoes for even ten minutes.
Which is a shame, because she always wears such nice ones.
Posted on Monday, March 3rd, 2014
There's some irony that my copy of the Kickstarter-backed book project I wonder what it's like to be dyslexic shows up the day after John Travolta transformed "Idina Menzel" into "Adele Dazeem" while introducing the singer at the Oscars.
I, for one, don't know whether or not John Travolta has dyslexia. It doesn't show up in his Wikipedia profile, and a cursory Google search doesn't reveal an interview where he discusses it. When people talk about John Travolta having dyslexia, I think they are confusing him with fellow Scientologist Tom Cruise, who has stated that Scientology helped him to overcome his dyslexia. Honest mistake, I guess.
However... as somebody who lives with a mild form of dyslexia, I can say that mangling "Idina Menzel" into "Adele Dazeem" certainly feels like something which can be attributed to dyslexia. But not everybody with dyslexia experiences it the same way, so the only person who can say for sure whether it was a factor is... John Travolta.
All I can do is speculate based on my experience, which would go something like this...
For the most part, seeing words as being made up of letters is not how I read. The Roman alphabet upon which English writing is based has letterforms that easily transform or flipped around when viewed individually. Thus my mind can play havoc with "p" and "q" and "d" and "b"... all of which can be mistaken for each other. And that's just the beginning. English has numerous complexities that make understanding words from letters no easy chore.
Nope. How I seem to read is to recognize words by their shape... as most people do, to a certain extent. But since I ignore the letters, which can be confusing, the shape alone is critical to comprehension. Which is why there are many factors that lead to how easily and how quickly I can absorb something. The contrast between letter color and the background color... the size of the text... how far apart the letters are... how wide the letters are... how tired I am... etc. etc. etc. But the biggest factor by far? The typeface (or font) used. If things get too fancy or deviate too far from the standard letterforms I read 96% of the time, my reading speed takes a dive and things get a bit difficult...
As illustrated above, cursive fonts are the worst. Unlike "standard" serif and sans-serif fonts which maintain a distinct shape... cursive writing just degenerate into a mess of lines to me. There's no "form" for me to pull out of the words, so I have to struggle through the actual letters to try and figure out what I'm reading. As you can imagine, things like wedding invitations, fancy poetry journals, and the like can be a real bitch.
Which brings us to Adele Dazeem.
Reading by shape pretty much requires that most of the words you're reading are words you're familiar with and can recognize.
"Idina" and "Menzel" are not such words. Beautiful as it is, John Smith it ain't. Enter the dyslexic swapity-do, where syllables get shuffled in your head as you strugle to make sense of the letters and what they're spelling to you...
Now, I'm not making excuses here. I don't even know for sure if Travolta is dyslexic. If he is though... the pressure of presenting an unfamiliar and difficult name live in front of a bazillion Oscar viewers is going to be rough-going no matter how much you've prepared. Even if he memorized the intro, it's not a guarantee of success when words are a struggle for you. All I can say for sure is this: If John Travolta is dyslexic, I very much admire the guts it takes to put yourself in a high-pressure situation (like live television) where words are involved.
And while I think it's a bit harsh to make fun of someone who is challenged with something as fundamental as reading... having a sense of humor over stuff like this is kinda essential.
Thus I, Dawid Shunter, give you... The Adele Dazeem Name Generator!
Here's hoping your Monday was better than John Travolta's.
Unless you ARE John Travolta, in which case... I LOVED YOU IN PULP FICTION!
Posted on Monday, March 10th, 2014
And here's that missing bullet from yesterday...
When it comes to the politics of religion, I generally remain silent because the fallout just isn't worth it. Even when I make a simple observation on the topic with no opinion whatsoever, it seems I end up with hate-mail or nasty comments. And it's not just here on Blogography. I once made the following comment on Facebook...
"Separation of church and state only seems to work one way, and that's to the sole benefit of the churches. They are given tax-exempt status so that their financial operations are kept separate from the government, as interpreted by the First Amendment, and that's fine. That's the law. But more and more we are seeing churches being actively involved in politics and government. They use their monies to sponsor candidates for public office, back legislation, contribute to lobbying efforts, and otherwise influence or control matters of the state. They are clearly not maintaining a separation from their side of the bargain. And yet there are no repercussions for them doing so. Get caught stepping over the line and you should be getting your tax exempt status revoked. But how often do we hear of that happening? Our government is tasked with upholding The Constitution and protecting the religious freedoms of the people they serve. Apparently this doesn't include protecting a person's freedom from religion. Which is why I want to vomit every time I see somebody claiming that they're being persecuted because they can't put Jesus on top of a post office... or same-sex couples can get married... or somebody says "happy holidays"... or whatever. Clearly, they have no fucking clue what "persecution" even means. Some churches have evolved into tax-free political action committees operating outside the law, and nobody does shit about it. The truth is that the only people being persecuted in this scenario are people wanting to live their lives free from religious rule and have a government free from church influence."
I ended up having to de-friend two Facebook "friends" and completely blocked a third over it.
And so I try to avoid the subject entirely, even though I think things are far worse now than they were when I wrote that five years ago. As churches and people of faith... namely, the Christian Right... feel more and more threatened by things they don't like (e.g. marriage equality), they've stepped up the persecution rhetoric to an all-time high. Many times I've wanted to write about this grotesque mockery of people who are enduring actual religious persecution... and the height of hypocrisy fueling it... yet I have resisted.
But now I don't have to write about it because somebody has written about it for me: News Flash to Christian Right: Religious Freedom Doesn't Give You the Right to Control Other People. So thank you, Robert Boston.
The only reservation I have over endorsing articles like this is the same one I always have... it does not apply to all Christians. I'm guessing it doesn't apple to most Christians. Not only that, but it could equally apply to any religious organization which feels their beliefs should dictate how other people live their lives in a society built on freedom of religion.
Or Freedom from Religion, as the case may be.
Posted on Saturday, April 12th, 2014
Teletubbies say "Eh oh!"
Posted on Saturday, May 3rd, 2014
"Master, are you a god?" "No," he replied. "Are you a reincarnation of god?" "No," he replied."Are you a wizard, then?" "No." "Well, are you a man?" "No." "So what are you?" The priest asked. Buddha simply replied: "I am awake." — A very loose translation from the Dona Sutta.For the most part, Saturdays are nothing for me to get excited about. They haven't been for a very long time. Which is okay. Really it is. I don't mind having to work hard every day of the week, because that's how I afford to go on vacation twice a year. And, despite getting cracked ribs on my Springtime vacation, I am totally looking forward to my Fall vacation. Whatever that's going to be.
And yet, regardless of how much work I have to get through, Saturdays at least feel like they should somehow be special. This is probably a remnant of my childhood where I didn't have to go to school and didn't have to worry about going to school the next morning (as with Sunday).
With that in mind, anything that puts a wrench in my Saturday deals double damage. Or rather, I get doubly upset about crap when it happens on a Saturday.
And today it's because of this ignorant piece of shit, Roy Moore of the Alabama Supreme Court...
And the story of his reprehensible behavior here: Alabama’s Chief Justice: Buddha didn’t create us so First Amendment only protects Christians.
I don't give a flying fuck if somebody wants to be a repugnant religious bigot and say stupid shit... zero fucks do I give... that's freedom of speech, even for dumbass Roy Moore. But if you're going to be an intolerant piece of shit, is it really too much to ask that you at least not be so grossly uninformed? You're a Chief Justice, for Christ's sake.
Buddha never claimed to "make" anybody. Nobody who practices Buddhism believes that Buddha "made" anybody. The Buddha was a teacher. A highly respected and revered teacher, but a teacher.
So when some redneck fringe Christian dumbfuck like Chief Justice Moore elevates Buddha to God, it's painfully obvious he has no fucking clue what he's talking about. Which obviously extends to his knowledge of The Bible, Christianity, The Constitution of the United States of America, US Law, State Law, the Treaty of Tripoli, and US History as a whole.
Yet at one point he was considering a run for the US Presidency.
And why not? People were stupid enough to elect this ignorant asshole into a State Supreme Court judge.
As with most positions of power in this country, smarts ain't required, yo.
I am so ready for Saturday to be over now.
Posted on Tuesday, May 13th, 2014
Fun trip to the eye doctor today.
Apparently my astigmatism, which has been growing progressively worse over the past six years, has done gone missing. Evaporated. Disappeared. Since I totally blamed my worsening eyesight on society's indoctrination by The Gay Agenda™, I figured I'd be completely blind by now since Washington State (and a bunch of other states) passed marriage equality and Michael Sam got drafted into the NFL as its first openly gay player.
But instead... my eyesight actually improved after Washington State (and a bunch of other states) passed marriage equality and Michael Sam got drafted into the NFL as its first openly gay player. So I guess I had it all backwards. Once marriage equality goes nation-wide and an NFL player's sexuality isn't considered news... I fully expect to get Superman's X-ray vision. Or his heat his vision. Or his microscopic vision. Or his telescopic vision. One of those visions. Maybe all of those visions.
Wow, Superman sure has a shit-ton of super-visions!
I guess that's why he's Superman.
But putting aside the fucking insane people who belief that The Gays are responsible for everything that goes wrong in the world... many happy congratulations to Michael Sam!
And his boyfriend, surely...
For the life of me, I cannot comprehend why two guys kissing caused a chunk of Americana to lose their fucking minds. Turn the channel and you've got people murdering each other... people abusing drugs... people having drunken sex... The Kardashians... and yet it's two guys kissing that makes people want to shoot their television and boycott ESPN?
"BUT, ZOMFG! THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!"
Kids only think that something is a big deal if adults make it into a big deal for them. If your children are freaking out, it's because you're making it happen. Don't go all homophobic crazy, and Michael Sam's kiss is just another kiss in a parade of thousands of kisses that happen on television every day.
Maybe people will finally be able to see that with their super-vision once we finally get an openly gay president.
Posted on Sunday, May 25th, 2014
If you're in the USA, I hope you're in serviceable condition this three-day holiday weekend... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• SOLAR. FREAKIN'. ROADWAYS! This project is so mind-bogglingly awesome that I really want to believe it's going to happen. Until I remember that all our fucking politicians are in the pocket of fucking oil industry billionaires who will undoubtedly stop at nothing to make sure it doesn't happen. No... our government will finally decide to allow something like this when we're finally OUT of oil, and there's no more Big Oil teat for them to suckle... at which point we won't have the energy to do it, but whatever...
The project has reached their funding goal... but you can still contribute and they can still put your money to good use. Click here to donate in the next six days.
UPDATE: An interesting look at why this idea is fantasy...
• The R-Word. And so this happened...
Look, it doesn't matter what the intent is. It doesn't matter the context. It doesn't matter what legacy has been established. It doesn't matter how "respectful" you are. It doesn't matter what tradition and history mean to the team. "Redskins" is a historically hateful, dismissive, disrespectful, racist, and wholly offensive term for Native Americans. Period. It hasn't changed meaning. It hasn't been "taken back." It hasn't "moved past" its vile history. It is just as hurtful to those of Native American heritage today as it has always been. So why is this even a debate? Why has it taken THIS long? I mean, I KNOW this country's history of treatment for its Natives has been atrocious from the very beginning, but how can it ever be too late to start changing that? Despite our tragic history's best efforts, THESE PEOPLE EXIST! And there is no possible reason, context, intent, or excuse where "redskins" is an acceptable term to be used for anything. Then. Now. Forever. That there are people who can't even see how horrifically offensive this word is to an entire people and their culture only goes to show just how ugly it really is. And it needs to stop.
• Assholes. Hearing crazy shit from assholes like Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh doesn't phase me any more. They say outrageous crap every day in order to shock people into paying attention to them, and I'm just done with it. But when it comes to everyday people? People who say outrageous crap for no other reason than being assholes towards their fellow human beings? That still freaks me the hell out...
Look, I've already written about the idea of people being forced to participate in activities that violate their religious convictions... but this is getting insane. Does nobody learn from history? Does any of this sound familiar? What's the next step? Do we just round up all the gays and the Jews so they don't accidentally offend somebody's religious sensibilities?? Seriously... what the fuck?!? I mean, THIS is the thinking of ignorant America now? I can't help but wonder how many surviving World War II vets are losing their ever-fucking minds right now. Exactly how far does this crap have to go before people wake up and just learn to live together?
• The Talk. Helpful video advice for parents...
I don't know what to say about this other than "genius." And holy shit.
• BIG! Well, since The Incredibles 2 has finally been announced, but is undoubtedly still years away, it seems like Marvel stepped up to the animation plate to fill the gap with little-known comic book property Big
Looks adorable. Baymax is the cutest thing to come to life since Schmoo.
And... unlike the rest of the known Universe (aka "The United States of America"), I have to work tomorrow, so until next week.
Posted on Monday, May 26th, 2014
To all those who sacrificed their lives in service of their country... and to those who served and are still serving... many thanks from a grateful nation.
Last year I remember seeing on the local news how Seattle-native Capt. Will Swenson was the first Army officer to receive the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War. I was recently reminded of his service when this YouTube video started making the rounds again. Reminding us to remember those who've fallen...
And so we do.
Posted on Wednesday, May 28th, 2014
How long have these V.A. Hospital scandals been screwing over our veterans? The first one I remember was laid at the feet of President George W. Bush back in 2007 when he somehow forgot that people get hurt in wars, and you have to prepare for that when you go to war. Then came President Obama with his flowery speeches from 2009 to 2012 at which time we were promised that he "will not be satisfied until we get this right."
And what happened then?
And all we've gotten... ALL we've gotten... have been lies and more scandals.
I don't know whether our politicians just don't give a shit about the men and women who risked their lives to serve their country, or if the problem is just so huge that nobody knows how to handle it.
Well, lucky for Congress and the President, I'm here to help.
Because, seriously, WHAT THE FUCK?!?
Politicians have no problem spending untold GAZILLIONS sending our troops to fight and die in their special-interest-sponsored wars... but come up short when it comes to their care. Injured soldiers are returning home to outrageously shitty health care doled out at a glacial pace which is provided under horrendous conditions in a situation so unfathomably bad that SOLDIERS WHO SURVIVE A WAR ARE KILLING THEMSELVES BECAUSE THEY CAN'T GET DECENT TREATMENT!
Fire the Veterans Affairs Secretary. Find somebody who can get the best value for the money and knows how to run a hospital network. THEN HAND HIM A BLANK CHECK AND GET THE JOB FUCKING DONE! I don't give a shit how much it costs. What's a few more billion on top of the millions of billions we've already spent on these wars? Is the health care of our veterans really where you want to skimp on budget? No. No it is not. This is one area where you want to back dump trucks filled with money up to the Veterans Affairs Office and just flood the fucking place with obscene amounts of cash. It's the price you pay for going to war. It's what you do when the people who put their lives on the line for you are hurting.
I'm sick and tired of the bullshit politics that have made this situation drag on for so absurdly long. I'm pretty sure that untold thousands of veterans are beyond sick and tired. Stop pointing fingers. Stop passing blame. Stop making speeches. Stop being such unbelievable pieces of shit to the Americans who least deserve it. Just stop it...
Posted on Tuesday, June 17th, 2014
Today was sure a good day for videos!
Starting with the international trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy, which is shaping up to be a must-see film. This pleases me, because I was highly skeptical when Marvel announced it was on their development schedule. The comic book has all kinds of weird ties to the "galactic" side of the Marvel Universe, which needs a lot of subtext to be fully understood.
It also features a talking raccoon.
But with each new sneak peek and trailer that gets released, I love the idea a little more.
Especially the talking raccoon...
Can you imagine if we get an Avenger or two in the sequel? Holy crap is Marvel doing absolutely everything right in their film properties.
My love of The Daily Show is well-known. A lot of that has to do with Jon Stewart's genius delivery of the "news" stories he reports. But he's not the only talent on the show. His supporting reporters are all pretty darn good. One of the best was John Oliver before he left to do his own show... Last Week Tonight.
Now he's even better.
He is able to distill complex topics to bits that are as easy to understand as they are funny. His latest story on Fifa is an excellent example...
His take on Net Neutrality, one of the most important topics in this country today, was genius...
The YouTube Channel for Last Week Tonight is well worth a look.
In music news... OK Go has done it again. They've crafted an incredible video for their latest track, The Writing's on the Wall...
What's great about OK Go is not just that they know how to make uniquely great music videos... but that the music they put in those videos is really great too. This song has been stuck in my head from the minute I heard it.
If you've ever wondered what would happen if Trey Parker and Matt Stone's brilliant Broadway musical The Book of Mormon were mashed-up with Trey Parker and Matt Stone's brilliant cartoon South Park... well, wonder no more. Simon Chong has flawlessly animated exactly that...
I'm no fan of musicals... but The Book of Mormon was absolute genius, and this just makes me hope that we eventually get a movie version of the show.
The Brian Williams rap mashups that have been appearing on Jimmy Fallon are amazing because they're so brilliantly crafted. The latest installment for Baby Got Back is no exception...
In case you hadn't seen it, my favorite of all of them is Rapper's Delight...
If you can't get enough, here's a link to more.
And lastly... such a cool rescue catch by Brock Holt of the ever-awesome Boston Red Sox...
How sweet was that?
See? A pretty good day for videos!
Posted on Thursday, June 19th, 2014
When marriage equality was put on the ballot here in Washington State, there was much hand-wringing and doom and gloom speak against it. Then it passed. And, for a while, the doom and gloom escalated to a fever pitch. Those who opposed marriage equality forecast utter ruin for Washington, saying that God would punish us for defying His definition of marriage.
And so I braced myself for plagues of locusts, fire raining from the sky, cats and dogs sleeping together, and Seattle sliding into the ocean while the Columbia River dried up... but it never happened.
That was back in 2012.
Now I sit waiting for the nut-jobs to climb out of the woodwork every time a natural disaster happens so they can say "SEE! I TOLD YOU SO!" Which, of course, they do. It seemed that every story on the internet about the recent tragedy at Oso had at least one comment blaming the mudslide on Washington spitting in the face of God by passing marriage equality.
Why God waited so long to show His displeasure is never explained. I mean, if marriage equality becoming law was so offensive to The Almighty, you'd think He would have acted immediately... sending a massive earthquake to rip our state apart (or whatever). But He didn't. Despite being omnipotent, I guess God likes to think these things over and dole out punishment little bits at a time?
And it never works the other way, does it? Thomas Peters spent every waking moment railing against marriage equality... until he had to take a break because of a horrific swimming accident that left him paralyzed. But was this considered God's punishment for Peters' bigotry and homophobia? No. No it was not. That Peters signed up for Obamacare when his National Organization for Marriage employers (assumably) dumped him off their insurance was not seen as ironic either... despite him railing against The Affordable Care Act as well.
Hypocrisy: It's what's for dinner.
Actually, with these people, it's for breakfast and lunch too.
Today the National Organization for Marriage took the money they saved by canceling Thomas Peter's insurance... along with a shit-ton of money from supporters who inexplicably donate despite NOM's non-stop parade of failures... so they could organize their "March for Marriage." An event to condemn marriage equality which was headlined by such luminous visionaries as Mike "The End is Nigh" Huckabee, Rick "Piece of Shit" Santorum, and Brian "We Must Continue the Fight so I Get Rich" Brown.
Chalk up another pathetic embarrassment for NOM...
Look, it's over.
Marriage equality is becoming a reality in more and more states. The momentum is undeniable. People are coming to realize that adding marriage for same-sex couples doesn't in any way affect "traditional marriage," so they want their gay friends, co-workers, and family to have the same rights they do. And as the homophobic bigots continue to die out faster than new ones are created, the pool of people willing to deny rights to gay couples is rapidly diminishing.
So rather than spending money in a losing battle on the wrong side of history supporting hate, it would be nice if organizations like NOM would put it to better use. Like spending it to feed the hungry and heal the sick. Since most of their money has religious ties, I'm guessing that's what Jesus would want anyway.
Oh... no... according to The Bible, that's exactly what he would want!
Funny how things all work out in the end.
Posted on Sunday, June 22nd, 2014
It must be Sunday... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Paws. It won't be easy to watch... but if you care about our furry feline friends, you'll want to see The Paws Project, now available to stream on Netflix. It documents the horrifying effect of declawing cats, which is far worse than taking off a nail on a human. It's more like taking off the finger-tips down to the first knuckle on a human...
Declawing is just awful. And yet there are still veterinary hospitals that promote it because it's profitable... even though there are far more humane alternatives. Hopefully this barbaric practice will be outlawed nation-wide if enough people start speaking up about it.
• Pledge. I have no idea where this photo comes from. But it's genius, and every time I run across it I love it even more. Because: 'MURICA!
I've finally decided to blog it so I can look it up easily every time I need a laugh.
• Silence! As if this video wasn't already freaky as hell with the sound...
Of course, anything featuring Jagger and Bowie is bound to be freaky as hell.
• Kare! As a huge, huge, mega-huge fan of Susan Kare's work, I was thrilled when Foodiddy sent me this link...
I wish she would have had time to go a bit deeper into her creative process, but this is a must-watch video for anybody interested in graphic design.
• Cozy My Ass. Of all the "Hitler Dubs" floating around out there, THIS is by far my favorite: Hitler tries to rent an apartment in San Francisco...
• Perry! I've grown so accustomed to Texas Governor Rick Perry being a raging douche that the insane shit he says doesn't phase me any more. Comparing homosexuality to alcoholism... while repugnant, ignorant an fucking stupid... is a relatively mild offense for him. I'd argue his pathetic attempt to write that off as a mistake after doubling down on it is even more ridiculous. Regardless, Funny or Die has a brilliant commentary on this particular bit of Rick Perry idiocy...
Can you believe the piece of shit is probably going to run for president again in 2016?
And... that clicking sound you here is me out of bullets in my blog-based six-shooter. Until next week...
Posted on Tuesday, July 1st, 2014
Read it. If you dare.
Politicians once again vote themselves accountable to nobody for anything. Exactly what our founding fathers intended for political office, I'm sure!
Yet dumbfuck Americans sit back and let bullshit like this keep happening instead of doing what they should be doing... which is either A) Demanding transparency in who's buying off our elected officials... or B) Lighting their shit on fire.
I hope I'm alive to see our government razed to the fucking ground and rebuilt without all this disgusting corruption that has choked the shit out of the democratically-represented republic we were supposed to be.
To all the traitorous douchebag assholes on the House "Ethics" Committee who made this pile of crap happen... fuck you. Seriously... fuck you, you fucking fucks...
Susan W. Brooks, (R) Indiana
Michael E. Capuano, (D) Massachusetts
Yvette D. Clarke, (D) New York
K. Michael Conaway, (R) Texas
Charles W. Dent, (R) Pennsylvania
Ted Deutch, (D) Florida
Trey Gowdy, (R) South Carolina
Patrick Meehan, (R) Pennsylvania
Pedro R. Pierluisi, (D) Puerto Rico
Linda T. Sánchez, (D) California
You have all betrayed the public trust so that you can further attempt to betray the public trust. The people whom you pretend to represent... the people who fucking VOTED for you... deserve to know who's PAYING YOU to be their bitch.
So enjoy your lobbyist-sponsored vacations while you can, you unbelievable pieces of shit.
Which will probably be forever, because Americans just don't seem to give a crap.
Posted on Sunday, July 6th, 2014
It's a great day to stay inside and surf the internet all day... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Drone! Most of the time I am not a fan of the successor to RC helicopters... RC drones. When they're not making an annoying whine as the scream across the sky, they're blowing stuff up. But every once in a while, somebody finds a good use for drones that makes me forget all about the negatives. This viral video of a drone flying through 4th of July fireworks is one of them...
WARNING: It may not be all fun and games, however, as this link will tell you.
• Evian! Speaking of viral videos... how in the heck did I miss this one?
Guess this is the inevitable next step from stupid talking baby and talking animal commercials?
• Proud! During San Francisco Pride, Burger King sold a "Proud Whopper" in one of their restaurants along the parade route. Not surprisingly, I heard about the outcry before I heard about the burger. People were saying things like "I'M NEVER EATING AT BURGER KING AGAIN!" and "STOP CRAMMING HOMOSEXUALITY DOWN MY THOAT!" (ahem). Which is about as fucking stupid as it gets, because this was not a nation-wide project. It was specifically made for a single event in one restaurant in a localized area where the event took place. The only way you'd have "homosexuality crammed down your throat" would be if your were there for San Francisco Pride... and, even then, you could choose to have a plain-old Whopper if you wanted. Burger King never forced you to eat a "Proud Whopper" at all. Putting the usual homophobic idiocy aside, the idea of it all was actually pretty cool. Especially when people found out what a "Proud Whopper" was...
Exactly. Which is why seeing the insane reaction to a completely innocent publicity stunt (which had a positive message for everybody) just reinforces my disgust at what my LGBT friends have to deal with every day. Which I'm guessing is something like this...
The only thing that gives me hope for the future is that people like this will soon be dead and their absurd bigotry will one day be dead with them. Until then, I guess everybody can just "Be Your Way."
• Horrible! The movie Horrible Bosses was a complete surprise when I saw it... namely because it didn't suck. I actually really liked it. Well-written, well-acted, and funnier than it had a right to be. Largely thanks to one of Jennifer Anniston's best movie roles ever as a truly horrible boss. I had no idea they were making a sequel, but here it is...
Can't wait! I just hope that it doesn't go all The Hangover on us and do a crappy rehash of the first film in the sequel... then shit the bed in the third one.
• Democracy? It will come as no surprise that I'm completely disgusted with the state of government in this country. Politicians are bought and paid for every damn day, which has effectively destroyed any chance of true democracy in this country. It seems an insurmountable problem. But then I saw something that has me intrigued...
Surprisingly, MayDay US reached their $5 million goal. Whether or not it can make any difference against politicians backed by unlimited funds remains to be seen... but it's worth a shot, I suppose.
• Shark! After the idiotic crap that tainted Shark Week last year, I was kind of soured on the idea. Then I see this ad...
And now I get to go to work! How awesome is that?
Posted on Friday, July 11th, 2014
And so... it's fire season again.
Some places have hurricanes. Others have floods.. tornados... earthquakes... name a disaster. Everybody has something. We have wildfires. They got scary close to where I live back in 2004. This time it's a slightly less worrisome 15 miles away near Entiat.
Local photographer Frank Cone has some amazing shots in his Flickr Photostream of the flames...
Entiat Wildfire Image by Frank Cone ©2014
Entiat Wildfire Image by Frank Cone ©2014
I feel terrible for all the animals that will die... and those who survive only to be homeless and hungry.
Thanks to the firefighters who, as always, put their lives and safety on the line doing a dangerous job to protect people and property in harm's way.
Posted on Friday, July 18th, 2014
The wildfire situation here is quite dire. Again.
Around a hundred people lost their homes in the Pateros region of Washington State. Highways are closing down all over the place. Local businesses are losing loads of tourism dollars during their busiest time of year.
And with more lightning strikes in the forecast, there doesn't seem to be an end in sight.
The flames aren't landing on my doorstep... yet... but the air is so full of smoke and ash that you don't want to leave the house without a mask on. Which seems like such a petty thing to complain about when houses are falling like dominoes... but it's miserable. There's only so long you can live in smoke before it drives you a little crazy.
I don't know how the firefighters manage it day after day.
But bless them for doing so.
Here's hoping some relief comes soon.
Posted on Tuesday, August 12th, 2014
If you've never suffered from severe depression... if you've never stood by helplessly as somebody you care about battles depression... if you've never made an effort to understand what depression is or what it does to you... then please, for the love of God, shut the fuck up about it. Your ignorant commentary adds nothing to the conversation and only serves to make things worse for people living with this drastically misunderstood mental disorder.
Because if I hear one more asshole like Shep Smith (who obviously knows jack-shit about depression) call Robin Williams "a coward" for killing himself, I'm going to lose it.
With depression you don't kill yourself because you're selfish or weak or a coward... you kill yourself because a non-stop feeling of utter desolation means you can't muster any self-worth and feel as if everybody you care about would be better off without you. That's the opposite of selfishness... the opposite of weakness... the opposite of cowardice. It's having the strength to choose ending your life in order to give those you love a better one.
Which is crap, of course, but that's the way your brain works when you have severe depression.
So comparing this disorder to "being sad" is ludicrous. It's not sad. Everybody gets sad from time to time because they're given a reason to feel sad. Depression is feeling sad to the point of despair for no reason and every reason with no end in sight. It's feeling completely lost without knowing why. It's feeling utterly alone when surrounded by people who care about you. It's the agonizing feeling of not being able to justify your very existence. And it is unrelenting. It simply does not stop. It overwhelms your every thought every minute of every damn day.
And unless you've been through it... or had to watch somebody endure it... your mind just can't comprehend what it's like. So stop it. Stop acting like you have a fucking clue.
"How could Robin Williams be depressed when he had millions of dollars?" — Money can't buy your way out of depression when nothing you can buy will bring you happiness.
"How could Robin Williams be depressed when everybody loved him?" — All the love in the world can't make you feel loved if you don't feel deserving of it.
"How could Robin Williams commit suicide and make his family suffer like this?" — When you feel that your depression is a burden to ones you love, suicide seems like the greatest kindness you can offer them.
Again. This is a mental disorder... you can't apply logic or rational thinking to explain it away.
And if you don't want to sound like a complete and total bastard, you'll stop trying.
Posted on Wednesday, August 13th, 2014
What's it gonna take?
Posted on Thursday, September 11th, 2014
Posted on Sunday, September 14th, 2014
Don't let Summer's imminent demise get you down... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• New? You know that feeling when a new toy you ordered from Amazon shows up? Suddenly it's Christmas and your Birthday all rolled into one and it doesn't matter that you had to pay for it because it's something you really want and are just so thrilled to have it in your hot little hands at long last after an agonizing wait even though you just ordered it only yesterday. Great, isn't it?
You know what's not great? Getting your new toy then discovering that it's not "new" after all. Not only has the box been opened previously... but all the packages inside have been opened. As if that weren't bad enough... THERE IS DIRT ON YOUR "NEW" TOY! ... DIRT!!!!
Obviously, I received returned merchandise. Obviously, I won't be keeping it. Obviously, I have to return it and wait AGAIN for my NEW toy to arrive.
Life can be so hard.
• Palin! Last month Sarah Palin started her own online channel. And more amusing than the fact that there are people out there willing to pay $9.95 a month to listen to her bullshit is that Saturday Night Live predicted it...
But it wasn't until news of a drunken brawl involving The Palins broke out that I realized what serious entertainment potential "The Sarah Palin Channel" has. Reality is far better than anything Saturday Night Live could ever dream up. And while I seriously doubt Sarah will be airing footage from what really goes on in her life that's not been carefully orchestrated for public consumption... I am praying that somebody captured footage of Palin yelling "DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?!? while mixing it up with the locals. I would gladly pay $9.95 to see that.
• Fake! As somebody who has been accused of "faking" my travels on more than one occasion, I was intrigued by the story of a Dutch girl who actually did fake a trip to Southeast Asia. At first I was thinking "How lame could you be?"... but then I read the story...
Interesting. And yet another wake-up call to not trust everything you read on the internet.
• Mom! This is beyond sweet...
So very Japanese... but in a way I think anybody can relate to.
• Phone 6! I placed my pre-order early enough that I'll be getting my iPhone 6 on launch day. Except I'll be half-way around the world on vacation when it arrives, so actually I won't be getting it on launch day. I am both happy and sad about that.
ZOMG! JUST LOOK AT IT! I really need to start planning my vacations better.
• Phone 8! I would never give up my Apple iPhone for a Google Android Phone. I don't care for Android... at all... and would consider such a move to be a significant downgrade. But then there's Windows Phone 8. I wouldn't trade down to that platform either... but, if Apple closed up shop today, that would be the phone I'd buy. For one thing, Windows Phone 8 is the only OS with an interface that seems "new." Whereas Android is a shittier version of what Apple's already done, Windows 8 is a beautiful departure. It feels modern. It looks great. Some real thought went into it. I like most everything about it... once I got used to the "flippy tiles" interface, which gets annoying after a while...
But there's a couple of serious problem for Microsoft: market share and apps available. Market share is probably the biggest problem because they don't have any. It's hovering just below 3% and dropping fast. And because of that, developers aren't writing apps for their dying platform. Including the three companies I work with. Two never even started... the third stopped all WinPhone development last Friday.
And so Microsoft is in catch-22 situation. Their market share won't grow if customers don't have a ton of compelling apps. Developers won't create a ton of compelling apps until there is significant market share. And I don't care how many billions of dollars that Microsoft throws at the problem, it's not going away any time soon. Which means Windows Phone 8 is probably not long for this earth. Eventually Microsoft is going to have to face the fact that they will never be able to compete with Apple and Google when it comes to smart phones. Their only chance now is to fork Android to create their own version of the OS so they can still do what they want to do while having access to the gazillions of apps available. Whether Microsoft decides to do the obvious or waste billions upon billions of dollars to no avail remains to be seen. As a fan of their UI, I hope they do something before WinPhone is forced to close shop permanently.
And, on that happy note... time to finish packing.
Posted on Saturday, November 1st, 2014
As of today, I have become a single-issue voter.
Since it doesn't seem to matter which political party gets into office, and Republicans and Democrats have been equally guilty of caving to lobbyists and fucking up this country... I just don't give a shit anymore. This tends to lead me to vote based on social issues rather than the Big Political Issues that are decided by People With Money instead of politicians.
Because if we're going to charge ahead into wars so the 1% can profit from the carnage... if we're going to continue to subsidize industries that destroy the environment... if we're always going to pass laws that stack the deck against the little guy so the big guys can keep their wealth and power... does it really fucking matter if it's a conservative or a liberal making the decision? Why should I care?
Newsflash... I don't.
I haven't for a long time.
And so I've made my election decisions based solely on the issues that politicians can actually change. Any time a candidate is fighting for personal liberties, equality, fairness, and keeping the government the fuck out of our bedrooms, vaginas, and private lives... they get my vote. Which is why Mitt Romney wasn't even on my radar during the last presidential election. President Obama was the least worst candidate on crap that presidents are actually a factor in changing. Sure he totally fucked us on "government transparency," but the People With Money were never going to let ordinary citizens see how the government really works anyway... so whatever. But Obama has pushed forward on issues like marriage equality, which is all he can truly change anyway, so there you have it.
And now we come to the one issue that makes me a single-issue voter from here on out.
Daylight Saving Time.
Any politician... ANY politician... who makes a campaign promise to eradicate Daylight Saving Time gets my vote. Republican... Democrat... Libertarian... Independent... Communist... whatever... that's how I'm casting my ballot.
I can't stand Hillary Clinton. But if Hillary Clinton runs with the promise of dropping Daylight Saving Time and her challenger does not... CLINTON 2016!
I can't stand Mitt Romney. But if Mitt Romney runs again with the promise of dropping Daylight Saving Time and his challenger does not... ROMNEY 2016!
Hell, if mental midget with an IQ of a butter dish Louie Gohmert decides to stop obsessing over gay men long enough to make a run for president in 2016 with a promise to abolish Daylight Saving Time... GOHMERT 2016!
Sure he's dumber than a box of rocks, but it's not like this would be the first time we've had a person so pervasively, astoundingly, unyieldingly ignorant in the White House. But we survived then and we can survive again... we'll just be doing it without having to dick with our clocks twice a year.
And speaking of pervasively, astoundingly, unyieldingly ignorant potential candidates... if he vows to get rid of Daylight Saving Time? TRUMP 2016!
Because the madness simply has to end.
Eliminate it... or split the difference... or even make Daylight Saving Time become Standard Time... I don't fucking give a shit... just stop this antiquated, nonsensical, idiotic crap once and for all...
RICK "PIECE OF SHIT" SANTORUM 2016???
Could be. Could be. All it takes is one campaign promise... you disgusting, unAmerican, homophobic, dumbfuck... and my vote is yours!
Posted on Sunday, November 2nd, 2014
Halloween may be over, but the terror is just beginning... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Frozen. While my hockey heart will forever belong to the Blackhawks, my love of Boston Red Sox baseball spills over to the Bruins from time to time. Halloween was one of those times...
Dressing up as characters from Frozen to visit sick kids? That's pretty great. GO BOSTON!
• Corn! Okay... this took me completely by surprise...
Now that's a cat that likes corn!
• Rock. Oh... so that's what it takes for Saturday Night Live to be entertaining again! Chris Rock and Prince! As a huge fan of Chris Rock, I knew he'd blow in like a hurricane and ride the bleeding edge. He did not disappoint. With an opening monologue that was so brilliantly dead on that he should be arrested for assault, Rock tore through gun control, Christmas commercialization, Jesus, 9/11, the Boston Marathon bombing, and Ebola like his life depended on it. Yeah, it was uncomfortable in spots, but it was exactly what it needed to be... enlightening and damn funny.
Now we just need to wait for FOX "News" to shit all over his performance like they do anything that they can spin into an attack on 'Murica. Then again, is there anything they can't spin into an attack on 'Murica?
As for Prince... he decided to skip the whole "two-song performance" tradition and combined his time for a single blistering medley of his latest tracks. I do not envy having to be the band who has to follow that next week.
• Bianco. How Christina Bianco can keep all those voices straight in her head is a mystery... but the result is pretty amazing...
What... no P!nk?
• Galactic. I was sorry to hear of the tragedy that overcame SpaceShip Two earlier this week. Forging into unknown territory is always a dangerous but worthwhile endeavor...
My thoughts are with the friends and family of co-pilot Michael Alsbury.
• OK! Yet another masterpiece from OK Go! This time they took their famous one-shot video concept to all new heights by using drones to shoot it. As if that weren't enough, the song is pretty awesome to boot...
Every time the band releases a new video, I wonder how they're possibly going to top it, and here's my answer. What's next? OK Go in space?
Click. Click. Click. Until next week then...
Posted on Tuesday, November 4th, 2014
There is no outcome for the midterm elections that doesn't result in something more fucked-up than what we already have.
I voted anyway.
Here's hoping we waste even more money on elections in 2016 so we can end up with something even more fucked-up than the fucked-up we just voted on.
Holy shit is this country depressing during election time.
Posted on Monday, November 10th, 2014
Any time I need a reason to keep blogging when most everybody else has quit, all I have to do is look at my visitor stats. For reasons completely unknown, people keep reading. Yes, the death of Google Reader had a big impact on my visitor counts... but the number of "unique visitors" stopping by keeps inching upward.
In short? Lot's of people visit here.
The bulk of my traffic has always come from Google searches but, in the past, those people never stuck around much. They'd get what they came for and move on. Now-a-days, however, a surprising number of people do stick around and keep reading. I'm not exactly sure why. Most of the time it's via tag links. Somebody arrives because a search led them here, they like (or hate?) what I have to say, then click through so they can read more posts on the same topic. And those topics can generally be ranked into a "Top 5" like this...
The first four categories are not that shocking. They encompass 75% of what I blog about (the remainder being day-to-day "DaveLife" crap).
The last one, however, is a bit surprising because I don't often write about politics. And yet, when I do, it usually ends up getting linked to from... somewhere... whether it's somebody agreeing or disagreeing. Writing about Rick "Piece of Shit" Santorum, for example, always result in linkbait because I'm so passionate about loathing the asshole, and people who also loathe him just love to share. That being said, posts that Conservatives could latch onto are the ones that seem to get the most attention. For example...
All the Right Wing love is nice, but I don't think I'll be signing up for the Tea Party just yet.
Guess I should send out a big "thank you" to Google for keeping people reading my bullshit.
Though I suppose having nearly 12 years of content to search through plays a part as well. When you've been blogging as long as I have, you've pretty much discussed just about everything there is.
Well, except Taylor Lautner. There are some topics beneath even me.
Posted on Tuesday, November 11th, 2014
For those men and women who are serving or have served (like my Mom and Dad!)... thank you!
If only the politicians who risk your lives when there's a job to be done would take better care of you once the job is over.
Posted on Wednesday, November 26th, 2014
This guy unleashes a lot of wisdom in a short amount of time. It's an enlightened take on current events... that was recorded two months ago (some explicit language ensues)...
Thanks so my Facebook friends for introducing me to Prince Ea's YouTube channel. I can't stop watching.
Posted on Saturday, November 29th, 2014
I don't believe The United States of America was created as a "Christian Nation" and never have. Our founding fathers made sure religious freedoms were built into the DNA of this country and were careful not to single out any one religion as "official" in our founding documents. This alone is all the evidence you need, but there is a lot of historical context to back it up (including the Treaty of Tripoli which spells it out in no uncertain terms).
No... in the only sense I have ever considered this to be a "Christian Nation" is that 77% of the population identifies as Christian.
But now I'm starting to think that at least 28%... and probably many, many more... of those identifying as "Christian" are full of shit.
Because if we truly were a "Christian Nation" as a matter of demographic, city governments would not keep making it illegal to feed the homeless. They would not do such a thing because Christians would not stand for it. Christians live by the example and teachings of Jesus Christ, and feeding the hungry is the very definition of what Jesus was all about...Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty." — John 6:35 (NIV)
Yes, Jesus is talking about spiritual hunger here, but look at the metaphor he's using! And he backs that shit up with one of his most famous miracles...
As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered. “Bring them here to me,” he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children. — Matthew 14:15-21(NIV)
And so, obviously, any true Christian considers feeding the hungry to be a major tenant of their faith. Because that's who Jesus is.
And they aren't playing. Earlier this month a 90-year-old manin Ft. Lauderdale was again arrested for his efforts in feeding the homeless. Sure there's public outrage... but not 77% public outrage calling for the resignation of city government and their bullshit excuses for creating such fucked-up laws (to "prevent government-run anti-homelessness programs from being diluted" — bitch, please).
And I don't get it. Where are the Christians in this "Christian Nation" of ours?
By their inaction, they're supporting those politicians who make it illegal to feed the homeless, I guess. Perhaps they think Jesus was the kind of savior who was worried about diluting government-sponsored programs or something.
But, setting Jesus aside for a minute, SINCE WHEN DOES A PERSON HAVE TO BE CHRISTIAN TO SUPPORT FEEDING THE HUNGRY?!?
77% of the population? Fuck that. Where are 100% of the population when stupid shit like this happens?
By their inaction, apparently 23% of them think this is a problem for the Christians to deal with instead of considering it to be a problem for humanity.
As for me?
MY faith forbids me from giving money to the homeless because they may use that money to purchase something harmful to themselves or others. But I buy food for the homeless whenever I am able. I see somebody who says they're hungry and I buy them something from a nearby market. Or take them to a nearby restaurant and pay for their meal. Or buy enough food when I'm dining out so that I can set aside part of it for them. And I don't give a crap if the city I'm in has some kind of stupid, unjust law in effect that forbids me from doing so. I may not be a Christian but, like the example set by Jesus, I don't particularly care about consequences when answering to a higher calling.
Because? Strut the Rooster...
Seriously? Getting arrested for feeding the hungry?
What the bloody fuck has this country come to?
I don't care if you believe this nation was founded on Christian principles or not. Right now I'm more concerned with us having any principles at all.
God bless America?
If this is what we've come to, I sincerely doubt it.
...and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. — Isaiah 58:10
Posted on Monday, December 1st, 2014
I like what I wrote in 2012.
So rather than come up with something that's sure to be worse, you can read my post of World AIDS Day here.
Posted on Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014
You're a typical American teenage girl who just wants a normal teenage life where you do typical teenage things and deal with typical teenage stuff. But your dad is the President of the United States, so that plan goes right out the window. Instead you lead a life that's anything but typical. Instead of going to the mall to hang out with friends, for example, you're dragged to some boring press event where your father will be... wait for it... pardoning a turkey. You don't want to spend a chunk of your day listening to dad make groan-inducing cheesy one-liners over a big bird, but you do it anyway because you're told to. Ironically this actually is a "typical teenage experience," because every teenager has to do stuff they don't want to do because their parents tell them to do it.
The difference being that typical teenagers don't have to do stuff in front of the entire country.
So you resign yourself to the fact that you have no choice but to attend the turkey thing and once again set aside your typical teenage dreams so you can live up to the unforgiving expectations of an entire country, if not the entire world. You check to see that your hair is presentable... you make sure you haven't spilled anything on your clothes... and you damn well cover up that zit that mysteriously appeared last night... this is going to be televised nationally, after all.
And then you show up to the stupid turkey event that you didn't want any part of from the very beginning... the same boring turkey event that you've had to go to for the past five years.
Hopefully your friends aren't watching this embarrassing situation.
Hopefully you remember not to pick your nose.
Hopefully it will be over with soon.
Photo by Jacquelyn Martin/Associated Press
Photo by... I don't know photo by because Daily Caller doesn't credit people for their work?
Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Photo by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press
Whew. Thank God that's over.
Six down. Two to go.
Now back to your efforts of being a typical teenager try... trying... t...
Wow. That was kinda harsh. You did your duty to show up. Your clothes were clean. Your hair was presentable. You covered up that zit. You didn't pick your nose. You clapped in all the right places. Sure, you looked bored in spots... you were making bored faces... but this turkey thing was boring as hell. Who can blame you? You did your best to make lame jokes with a big bird look interesting, even this isn't really your thing. You'd rather be at the mall with your friends, right?
But haters gonna hate... so what can you do?
If some staffer for a Republican politician with an axe to grind wants to pathetically unleash her vendetta on a rival politician's kids, That's the way it goes, isn't it?
That's the game you signed up for, right?
Hey! Wait a minute... you didn't sign up for this! Your mom and dad did.
Oh well. You get to live in a really great house. You get to travel the world. You have opportunities that other kids can only dream about. It may not seem worth the trade-offs now, but I'm sure you'll come to appreciate it some day. Maybe.
And maybe... just maybe... next time you're forced into some boring-ass press event you will learn from your critics and live up to the lofty expectations of "class and respect" that people like Elizabeth Lauten expect of you.
Wow. That Elizabeth Lauten is really something, isn't she?
You're guessing that Elizabeth Lauten must have been a model teen, right? To be an authority on "class and respect" for teenagers, she must have been a regular Doris Day for crying out loud! Donna Reed could take lessons from Elizabeth Lauten! If only you could be like that! Perfect in every way at every moment like Elizabeth Lauten was as a teen. Forever having that perfect smile on your face like Elizabeth Lauten must have had. Always knowing the classy thing to do like Elizabeth Lauten did. Consistently ma... making... m...
So this is what she meant by "class."
Or do the rules only apply to teenagers who have a parent that's the president?
It doesn't seem right that the crazy stuff you did as a teenager should be tied around your neck for all eternity. Sure Elizabeth Lauten was busted when she was a juvenile, but should that be her defining attribute for the rest of her life? When your family has left The White House and you've grown up and started your own life, is the media going to dig up photos of you being bored at the turkey pardoning event every time you make a public attack on a couple kids whose dad you hate? Because that would be awful.
Despite her being a total hypocritical ass, you kind of feel sorry for Elizabeth Lauten now, don't you?
I mean, all she did was say some mean things to a couple of kids. Now she's out of a job.
Probably not for long though... I'm sure there are plenty of people who will make her out to be the total victim she is and give her a new job. After they let her down from that cross they've hung her from, of course.
Perhaps she'll be a new FOX "News" personality.
Because if there's anybody better at pardoning turkeys than your dad, it's FOX "News."
Best wishes to you. Hopefully you'll get a few days off before some other adult who hates your parents decides to pick over your every move and crucify you on the internet because they don't like what you're wearing or how your face looks when you're bored (SUCH a classy thing to do, by the way... I wonder how Bristol Palin dealt with this stuff?).
Oh... and good luck with that whole "typical teenager" thing you're shooting for. Let me know how that works out.
Posted on Monday, December 15th, 2014
I know I just wrote about the Greenpeace desecration of the Nazca lines yesterday, but I've only grown more enraged over the issue, and can't seem to let it go. This is outrageously disgusting on every level, and all those involved should be fucking shot. They have caused serious damaged to an artifact of massive historical significance and just don't give a shit. Greenpeace apologizes for "offending anyone" but seems to think they are above apologizing for the damage they've done to this cultural treasure...
It's stuff like this that makes me crazy.
And it's not limited to Greenpeace... plenty of other organizations who proclaim to advocate causes with "peaceful protest" do this kind of stupid crap all the time. And they feel fully justified because their "message" is more important than the destruction they cause. Well fuck that. No matter how important their message or how just their cause, Greenpeace made it perfectly clear that the real reason they fight for their environmental issues is for self-glorification and self-promotion. In the end Greenpeace only really cares about... Greenpeace.