Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ten Places I'm Dying To Go To (And Ten I'm Not)

I have done very little traveling and it kind of sucks.  I'd love to see a lot of different places, but there are also destinations I have absolutely not desire to see.  I think most of the places I want to go to are for the food.  Most of the places I don't want to go to are just because of the people who have told me they are great.  We'll see.

Places I want to go.

10. New Orleans - been there for Mardi Gras.  Wanna go back just to eat.
9. Australia - I know I'm dying by shark attack, why not go down under for it?
8. Italy - completely honest reason...I want to know just how little Italian Americans know about food.
7. Mount Rushmore - I have no idea, but I want to see it in person. 
6. Paris - I want to sit and eat pressed duck while sipping on delicious wines.
5. San Diego - Everyone I know who has been says it's the greatest place on earth.
4. Ireland - I want to show those pale fucks how a real man drinks.
3. Portland, Oregon - food, climate and did I mention food?
2. Vietnam - And I want to go with Anthony Bourdain.
1. Park City Utah - before I die, I'm going to Sundance.

Places I don't want to go

10. India - love the cuisine, but I feel like I'm there every time I pay a bill late.
9. Dallas - hate the Cowboys, hate guns, hate dumb people.  Like the show though.
8. Denver - love the mountains, Coors Light and the Broncos, but hate bigots.  Lots of bigots there.
7. China - love the food, hate crowds.  Don't they have a billion people?
6. Egypt - friends told me it's great.  Friends also told me it's hot as fuck.  I hate the heat.
5. Iraq and Afghanistan - that TV show the last few years makes me not wanna go. Oh that's a war?
4. Atlantic City - been there once.  I enjoyed it this much (my fingers are pressed together).
3. Los Angeles - has anyone ever said they love L.A. other than Randy Newman?
2. New Jersey - there really is no reason it's still here.  Damn you Irene, it was our gift to you.
1. Las Vegas - every time I see friend's pics of Vegas, it looks like Jersey Shore.  Stay in Vegas!

Well there you have it.  Give me some money and I'm going to wine and dine myself all over the map, but I'm going to skip a few stops and will not be betting on black.  Definitely not.

Random Thoughts: Things I LIke/Don't Like Lately

I liked it last night when an elderly man saw my Red Sox shirt and shook my hand.  Then told me, "I hope you enjoy the game, right up until the end." I dislike older people who think they are entitled not to have manners.

I like when people who haven't known me very long get me. I dislike when people who have known me for years don't get me....still.

I like when I see an older brother hold his sister's hand when they cross the street.  No matter what age they are.  I dislike when I see kids teasing other kids, because I know it's not their fault.  Their parents are assholes.

I like when I wake up in the morning and my shoulder hurts, because someone I care about was laying on it all night. I dislike when my knees and back hurt from doing stuff I used to do forty hours a week.

I like the passion that Democrats show when they are concerned with a cause.  I dislike the fact that Democrats are so lackadaisical about the things they don't care about.

I like that Republicans want to change things and make life in America better. I dislike the fact that not one Republican running for office or that is a friend of mine has even one solid idea of how to change things and make life better.

I like when people who don't have things going well for them can still be positive. I don't like it when people who have it better than most, complain about the most mundane things.

I like when people I haven't seen in a while act happy to see me. I dislike when people I haven't seen in a while, who never call me, give me shit for not being around.

I like when people give me advice and suggestions because they love me.  I dislike when people give me advice because they think they know what I should be doing.

I like when people tell me I'd be a good father.  I dislike when people tell me I don't know what it's like to be a parent.

I like that feeling you get when someone does something nice, just to do it.  I dislike when people do something nice to hear how nice they are.

I like when I run into someone I haven't seen in a while and they immediately remind me of a funny time we had together.  I dislike when people I see every other day do this.

I like when I dream about my mother.  I dislike when she's mad at me and I wake up before I can make it right.


Monday, August 29, 2011

Hurricane Irene: The Day I Dropped The Ball

Irene started coming in sometime Saturday evening.  I laughed at Irene during the day and enjoyed some "storm is brewing" cocktails with friends.  As places started closing early, I continued the party, with full knowledge I had to be there for someone if things were to go bad.  As the rain began to come down harder, so did the beers and shots.  My friend came in and explained that she'd love to stay, but she had to get home because they were closing the roads.  We returned to her house to some flooding in the basement.  During this time, I fell asleep on the couch, while she spent the entire night dumping buckets of water.  

The next morning, I tried to defend myself, tried to make sense of it.  She was exhausted and I was well rested.  I did a very small part, but after the mess, not during it.  Not in the middle of the night, after she had worked 12 hours.  She had been up for more than 24 hours straight.  I had slept half the night.  It wasn't fair to her.  In her defense, she joked about certain aspects of my idiocy.  She made light of the fact I tried to cover my mistakes.  She then spent the rest of the day with me.  She made me dinner and she fell asleep in my arms.  I didn't deserve any of it.  I deserved to be sent on my way.  I deserved to be alone, to think about what I had, or should I say, hadn't done.  I deserved to be as upset as she was the night before.

This morning, I'm alone and she's back at work.  She left me laughing; a smile, a kiss.  I can't stop thinking about how much I messed up.  We've only known each other a short time and this was my time to shine.  To be the man and to prove my worth.  Somehow I managed to mess this up.  It was selfishness.  It was silliness.  I've told her how sorry I am, but it's not enough.  Somehow I have to make this up to her.  Make it up to myself, because I feel awful.  I have no answers other than to say, next time I'll be there.  I hope there is a next time.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

You're All Superficial: Gifts

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that I do not think or act the same way as others. I don't react to situations as others do and my reactions are sometimes seen as inappropriate.  I'm rarely politically correct, because i believe political correctness is usually one's way of saying, I have no morals or standards that I live by, so let me go with the majority.  The biggest difference I see is in the act of gift giving.

I've gone out of my way to buy someone something expensive and to much different responses than expected.  I've had people splurge on me, only to react in a way that let them know that they didn't really know me.  This can even be said for family members.  Even they struggle to know me.

I could give someone a diamond necklace, but if their reaction was one of utter jubilation, it would be at that very moment that I'd know, they weren't for me.  It's not to say I wouldn't think they are worth it, but there has to be a line.  I've written about the silliness of engagement rings in earlier blogs, so I'll lay off this time.  What I want to concentrate on is the positives.

  I want to tell you about the three greatest gifts I've ever received.  The first was a baseball.  I was coming to the end of another summer at Pierce Camp Birchmont in Wolfeboro, NH.  The summer had been a great one, as they always were, and the fatigue had finally set in.  It was the second or or third to last evening and a couple of kids came into my room.  They said they had a present for me.  I soon saw the rest of the kids from my cabin standing in the room.  They handed me a well worn, almost brown baseball. On it read "Jon, Our Leader, Summer '99."  I looked closely and it had been signed by every kid in the group.  I did everything in my power not to lose it in front of them, but every once in a while I take it in my hand and look at it.  They're all older now, but they still mean a lot and their act, to this day, brings a tear to my eye.

The second gift was also one from my kids.  I was running a basketball class in Harrison and the class had about eighteen children.  Sixteen boys and two girls.  The class ran for about 10-12 weeks and on the very last  day the two girls came up to me and handed me a card.  Inside it was a large piece of paper with a drawing made by both of them.  It showed two little girls holding a bigger person's hands.  Around it was a sun, a moon and basketballs everywhere.  On top it said "To Jon" with the O's in the shape of hearts and one the bottom it said "We Love You, signed Dominique & Kiki."  I thanked the girls, thanked their moms for having such wonderful girls and walked to my car.  I cried the entire ride home, because I was so touched.  These girls weren't the happiest in the class, they didn't appear to have the most fun and it was trying at times to make them play with the rough and tumble boys. I actually ran into both girls a few years later at a summer camp and they were delightfully embarrassed to see me after I reminded them about their card.  I thanked them again and that was it.  It still means a ton to me.

The final gift was one given to me last night. It's fresh in my mind and who knows what the future holds, but under the circumstances, it meant the world to me.  I've been in a lonely place the last few years.  I've had a hard time coping with certain things and I've used different techniques to get by.  The main thing is feeling wanted.  We all need this.  We all want it, but after being hurt (or hurting), we become guarded.  I recently started seeing someone and it got off to a bit of an odd start.  We agreed to take it slow and get to know each other, but we've both seemed to crave each others company. Last night we had planned to order come Chinese, watch a movie and share a bottle or two of wine.  Somehow this turned into Sushi and we found ourselves at Haiku.  She drank a sake cucumber martini, I had a beer.  I handed her the menus and told her to order for the both of us.  We then had Shumai and yellow tail with jalapeno in a citrus sauce.  The waitress who knew my date, gave us complimentary edemame.  We devoured the appetizers and moved on to miso soup and some salad.  She switched to sake which she shared and I had a Sapporo.   During the early stages of the meal, I joked about what our relationship status was.  She said nothing, but smiled and said we might be seeing each other.   She then said "I bought you a present today,"  We then received out sushi sampler and passion roll with two pieces of uni.  I hadn't eaten uni in 20 years and she was hoping I'd hate it, so she could indulge.  I loved it. We spoke more about various topics, but the intrigue of the gift got to me.  She took great pride in the fact it was getting to me.  She then said, "well the gift might answer a question you asked before."  I was a little confused, being she said she got it at CVS.  So the dinner ended with an after dinner drink of more Sake and beer and we returned to her house.  I sat down and asked what my present was and she handed it to me.  A toothbrush, followed by, "Since you'll be staying here a lot, I thought you should have this."  I may never have someone buy me a car, an expensive watch or fly me to Paris, but that's OK.  I have a toothbrush and it was given to me by someone who might not have the words, but told me, I like you and want to be with you.  You can't put a label on that.  Or a price.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The MIxed Bag Blog - Suggested By Friends On Facebook

I recently wrote in a status update that I needed some suggestions for blogs.  A few people blurted our their suggestions and being that a few of them were ideas I didn't think I could write a whole blog about, I decided to combine their suggestions into one blog.  Below is my take on a wide variety of oddball topics.

The first person said they could inspire me.  While they have inspired me in ways, I don't feel it's right to disclose such information in a blog.  They've inspired me to be happy again.  Not just, laughing and joking with friends, but to feel an inner happiness that was lacking.  I'm going through a rough patch and people always think I'm strong, because I don't let things bother me. The truth is, Smokey Robinson's Tracks of my Tears is probably the perfect theme song for me.  The initial line, "people say I'm the life of the party, cuz I tell a joke or two," can sum up how I'm feeling most nights.  In the last few weeks that hasn't been the case.  So yes, I have been inspired.

Then someone said "find a castle for me."  It was a response to a joke that I'd get them a jumpy castle.  The truth is, I've always thought that if I won a ton of money, I'd buy a huge castle, with lots of little castles surrounding it and keep all my friends close to me.  All their bills would be paid for and their children's education would be provided for and all the every day worries would be gone.  All I'd ask in return was to know they are happy.  That they don't have to suffer the daily woes that so many of us have to. That would be my dream. 

This was followed with the suggestion of "The Four Horseman of Sesame Street."  Now I've never thought of Sesame Street and the apocalypse in the same light, which to be quite honest is a little surprising being my normal thought processes.  I won't get all religious, but as Jesus (Kermit) opens one of the seven seals and releases the four Horseman they come riding on different color horses.  I will admit, I had to look this up.  While interpretation vary. the White horse wears a crown, but also represents evil, so he is the Count (did the count wear a crown?). The Red horse represents war and violence, so I would say Animal (I know he's a Muppet), because he's crazy an out of control.  The Black horse represents famine, so he would be represented by Oscar the Grouch, because he lives in a garbage can.  The Pale (sometimes Green) represents death, so I would think Mr. Snupplepagus, because it's always been my theory, he is a heavenly spirit.  Only big bird can see him and while kids may see this as an imaginary friend, the real meaning might be Big Birds ability to contact the afterlife.  Also, Dinosaurs are extinct.  This section also took care of the horse request.

Then someone made their second suggestion and mentioned Rock and Disco.  Now it's my contention that the greatest, most memorable songs are rock songs, but the songs we most like to hear are disco songs.  Now, I love me some Sabbath, Stones, Skynard, Who or The Clash, but I'll take Thelma Houston's Don't Leave Me This Way or Everything But The Girl's Missing any day over those power bands.  It just puts me in a happier place.

Someone asked me to mention the steroid use of the championship Boston Red Sox run. I do not deny they had players who did it then and tested positive later. What I find ironic, is that this comes from a person who roots for a team who not only had more players, but had players who had absolutely incredible career years the seasons they won.  The Red Sox who tested positive (three years after their wins while coming off of injuries, not during like the Yankees) were stars, not role players who batter 100 pts higher than their previous seasons or who hit twice as many homers as they had ever hit.  Just saying/.

This same person then mentioned stereotypes.  I have a self made theory on stereotypes which I recently shared with someone.  It's one sentence and it rings true every time.  "Stereotypes are based on a group of people's actions, which are at all times, 51% true."  Think about it.

The mankini suggestion is scary on every level.  I was disturbed when I saw Borat.  Not by the mankini, but by how it represented all that is wrong with this world.  It's the dumbest movie ever and people thought it was hilarious.  I still don't get what is funny.  Then again, someone being attacked by a Shamu while trying to get him to do a back flip is funny to me.  So maybe it is me.

Well, that was all the suggestions people felt like they wanted to make.  So that's all I could write about.  I'd love to get more suggestions and one's that I could really write an in depth blog about.  I love writing these things, because it's like brain exercise.  I know a lot of people who can bench press more than me in the gym.  Sadly, most of them think it's spelled Jim.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The 25 Greatest TV Shows of All-Time

I was recently looking at a list of 100 greatest television shows of all-time and realized just how bad the shows on TV right now are.   There was not one current show other than a news show and three variety shows, two of which have pretty much jumped the shark.

In making my list, I tried not to romanticize my childhood, so there will be no Incredible Hulk or Six Million Dollar Man.  I tried not to overstate what's fresh in my mind, so there will be no Master Chef.  I'm using two criteria.  First, how much did this show impact me at the time and second, would I watch this again and have it still impact me.

As many know, I stray from the norm, so there will be no Seinfeld or Friends.  There will be no Lost or American Idol.  There will be no reality shows.  There will be no single events, such as the Super Bowl.  There will be no specials, though mini series will be included.  For the sake of this blog, I have gotten rid of foreign TV, so there will be no Monty Python (which would definitely be on the list) or Father Ted.  There will be no single sport wrap-up shows, so no NFL Primetime or Baseball tonight. There will be no late night talk shows, so no Johnny Carson or David Letterman.  And finally, there will be no news, so no 60 Minutes or Sunday Morning.  This will only be series or mini series with one exception.  With my limited parameters, I was able to dwindle my list down to 35 shows.  Here are the one's who missed the boat:  The Bob Newhart Show, General Hospital (yes), Married with Children, Sandford and Son, Soap, South Park, Star Trek, Dynasty, Dallas and finally The Sopranos.

I would like to take one moment to comment on the Sopranos.  I'm basing my decision to exclude it from the top 25, because of it's failure to stay consistent.  The first season is arguably one of the top ten shows of all-time.  The second is arguably in the top twenty.  The third is awful and what followed can only be described as horrific.  The show got so bad, I must admit, I have never seen any episodes from the final season.  That being said, the first two were so good, they deserved mention.

I also want to preface this with the fact I have never seen The Wire, Arrested Development and I'm waiting for Dexter to end before passing judgement, because I fear this coming season may jump the shark.  That being said, if I included Dexter, it would be in the top five.

On to the list.

25. Get a Life - Chris Elliot plays a lovable loser who is a 40 year old paper boy who lives with his parents.  His real life father, Bob (of Bob & Ray) fame is the scene stealer.  Best Episode: He builds a submarine in his bathtub.

24. Roots - powerful miniseries starring Levar Burton as Kunta Kinte.  Still as powerful today as it was back then.  Best Scene: When the slave owner whips him and he refuses to acknowledge his slave name of Toby.

23. Cheers - Ted Danson & a motley crew of misfits spend their lives in a bar.  This almost didn't make my list due to the Kirstie Alley years, but Woody saved it so many nights.  I honestly didn't like this show when it was first on, but discovered recently it was pretty damn good.  Best episode:  The pilot, when Diane gets jilted.

22. C.S.I. - When this show began it was groundbreaking.  It's lost some of it's luster and I am far from a regular, but the above average acting always gives it a little punch.  Best Episode: The season finale directed by Quentin Tarrentino.  One of the single best TV episodes ever.

21. Sesame Street/The Muppets - Obviously these had to make the list.  They're something we all grew up on and even though they have introduced so many annoying new characters on Sesame Street, it's stood the test of time. The Muppets, when they were on were brilliant.  I combined the two because of similarities and Kermit!

20. The Naked Chef - Jamie Oliver makes cooking look simple.  I was tempted to put Jules & Jacques, but this is the show that really got me into cooking and cooking shows.  Best episode: He makes this ridiculous meal after his mates come back from a night of drinking.  All in one frying pan.

19. I Love Lucy - Lucille Ball and Desi Arnez are the most odd couple in TV history and they were real.  Some shows missed their mark, but the moments when Lucy and Fred are on screen are incredible.  Best Episode: The chocolates on the conveyor belt.

18. Criminal Minds - some people thinking it's a little hokey, but in my opinion it's the best drama on TV.  Acting isn't incredible, but the plots make up for any lapses.  I do like the earlier one's with Mandy Patankin a little more, but Best Episode: The season five two part finale; Two Hell.....and Back.

17. The Odd Couple - probably the best buddy program in TV history.  The concept has been redone a million times and never as well as Tony Randall and Jack Klugman did it.  Best Episode: Don't really remember, but I remember a great one where Felix steps in for a famous ballet dancer.

16.  The Honeymooners - Jackie Gleason and Art Carney get all the credit, but I think it was the women that truly made this show funny.  Some people think it's the funniest show ever.  Best Episode: A psychiatrist tells Ralph to stay away from Norton.

15. Magnum P.I. - now many people would consider this to be a guilty pleasure, but the show had some very intense episodes.  Tom Selleck was the man when this show was on and his relationship with Higgins was not only funny, but at times truly touching.  Best Episode: (tie) The shark encounter while surfing & the season finale when Magnum confronts the Russian.

14. M*A*S*H - the stellar cast and comical look at war was a phenomenon that was hard to explain when the show started.  While some cast members came and went, the show stayed true.  Best Episode: The series finale.

13. X-Files - I didn't like this show when it first came out, but then started watching repeat marathons on FX.  Watched the entire series within weeks.  Acting isn't great, but the whacked out plot lines were.  Best Episode: Squeeze (and later Tooms) which had the greatest "monster" in TV history.

12. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart - republicans think it's a news show pointing the finger at them, democrats think its a news show poking fun of republicans.  It's actually a comedy show that points the finger and pokes fun of the ineptness of the people we elect.  Best Episode: Strictly for comedic reasons, Paul Rudd dancing during his entrance and the ensuing interview while he was hyping Role Models (which is one of the most underrated comedies ever).

11.  Saturday Night Live - with a cast list of tons of superstars, this show has gone from being the single funniest show in the history of television to the worst show in TV.  The musical guests have always kept it relevant even during it's lean years.  Best Episode: Any of the Steve Martin hosted shows.

10. I Claudius - while originally aired on the BBC, this masterpiece theater miniseries was the second greatest one season series of all-time.  Derek Jacobi, John Hurt and Patrick Stewart telling the tale of Claudius under Caligula's reign.  The entire series is the best episode.

9. Family Guy - Seth Macfarlane is a genius.  He manages to be completely politically incorrect and gets away with it, because he goes after everyone.  Best Episode: Stewie asking Brian about his novel.

8. SportsCenter - ESPN signature show. It's lost it's luster as of late, but it changed the way people followed sports and allowed everyone to get to truly know the athletes by more than just numbers and box scores.  Best Episode: Charley Steiner laughing at Carl Lewis' Star Spangled Banner rendition.

7. St. Elsewhere - long before ER and other hospital crap, this groundbreaking show touched topics that were completely taboo, such as aids and rape.  The first season was actually terrible and instead of scrapping the entire show, they changed the actors and it changed it forever.  Best Episode: The Series Finale with the hospital seen in the snow globe.  Next to the Bob Newhart Show, possibly the greatest series finale finale scene ever.

6. Hill Street Blues - with a cast of character you loved or hated, the show represented every aspect of the justice system, from beat cop to district attorneys.  Best Episode: Belker's rape.  One of the most shocking scenes ever and the resulting trauma led to incredible shows.

5. Brideshead Revisited - The greatest miniseries ever made.  With a cast that included Laurence Olivier, John Geilgud, Claire Bloom, Anthony Andrews and Jeremy Irons you could have had them read a Wheaties box and it would be genius.  This was so much more.  Another BBC masterpiece that PBS luckily replayed for American Audiences.   Best Episode: A drunken Sebastian crashes his car while with Charles (I don't know when Less than Zero was written, but I have to believe it was influenced by this episode).

4. The Shield - the show came so close to jumping the shark, but never did.  The finale was so incredible it made up for some of the shortcomings of the final season.  The first season, one could argue is up for greatest season ever for a drama.  Week after week it only got better.  Best Episode: Rapper Sticky Fingaz and another gang member are put into a storage container to work our their differences by Mackey.  The result was not what was expected.

3. All in the Family - Probably the greatest TV character of all-time is Archie Bunker.  Many have listed this as the greatest show of all-time and I can't disagree, I would say my top three are about as equal as they come.  This show was a live action Family Guy thirty years before.  Best Episode: Arguably the single greatest episode of comedy ever was the show in which Sammy Davis appeared and kissed Archie.

2. Roseanne - People may not like Roseanne Barr, but this show was incredible.  It was so real that you couldn't not appreciate it.  It was a real look at a family that used humor to cope with all it's other problems.  Best Episode: Darlene reads her poem.  I cry every time I see it.

I will preface my number one by saying it's not only the best show, but the single most underrated show on TV.  I once new a girl whose father was a big wig at Fox and she said it killed them to cancel this, because all the people at Fox loved it, but the ratings just weren't there.

1. Millennium - While some call it a poor man's X-Files, Lance Henriksen was outstanding as the person who had the ability to see what the killer sees.  The show was so dark, some people just couldn't handle it.  The first season is outstanding and contained a pilot like no other.  That being said, the best episode was called Somehow, Satan Got Behind Me, which was a break in the action of the show and took a comedic twist.  It featured four devils sitting in a coffee shop talking about what they had done.  Frank Black isn't even in the show until the end if I remember.

Did you expect I'd list something normal?  I'd love to hear suggestions of shows you think I might have forgotten about

4:39am

I wish I had money.  I wish I had money to give me the freedom to do some of the things I've been dreaming of.  I don't want to circle the world in a hot air balloon.  I don't want to eat at every great restaurant in the world....OK, I'm lying, that is exactly what I would do if I was rich.  But that isn't why I want money.


I want money because I have ideas.  I have an idea for a game show.  I have an idea for a reality cooking show.  I have an idea for a novel.  I have an idea for a screenplay.  I have an idea for a non-profit organization.  I have an idea for a new sports pool.  I have an idea for a vacation.  I have an idea for a house I want to build.  I have an idea for a dinner I want to cook.  I have an idea for a business I want to start.  I have a lot of ideas.

It's 5:01 now.  I have no ideas.  I just wish I wasn't here and I was there.  Listening to her breathe.


Monday, August 22, 2011

EPIC RANT!!!

I was reading some of my older blogs and I've realized that I have become soft.  I have gotten downright silly at times.  I need to get back to my roots.  I need to start using this blog for what it was intended.  Free Fucking Therapy.  I think recently I've tried to get a laugh from one or two people, but lost sight of the fact that this used to really help me.  So here it goes,

Recently I've had some online debates with people over politics. As everyone knows, I live in the heart of conservative Eastchester and my opinions stand out more than Chris Christie at a salad bar.  This debate started with me making a comment on a friend's page and snowballed into a few people attacking me, some personally.  Now, I'm always up for a debate as long as the playing field is even.  Sadly, the most vocal opponent is to intelligence what Courtney Love is to class.  The arguments are so painfully stupid, that at one point a friend messaged me and said "how can you take this...he's so fucking dumb."  The fact was, it took everything not to call him a fucking asshole.  Then some others chimed in and one person tried to keep the peace.  One person I respect, but honestly, would love to know the websites he finds his information.  I think it comes from Bill O'Reilly's toilet paper roll.  The thing that got me incensed was being called a deadbeat who mooches off the system by a fucking coke head.  Every time I see this guy he grinds his teeth so hard you can hear it.  Sure he's successful financially, because they just came out with a report that assholes succeed in business over good guys.  Congrats to you and your binge.  I respect people's families too much to bash them openly on Facebook, but make sure the person you're bashing doesn't know a few of your dirty little secrets, before attacking you.

That being said, I'll probably take a break from arguing with, as I like to call them "room temperature IQ's, and I'll stick to discussing it with people who have some grey matter between their ears.  Why is it, when I look on FB, all my republican friends post about Casey Anthony, they oppose gay marriage and they are big fans of Jersey Shore.  Yeah, these are the people I want voting in our next election.  What kills me, is their version of being aware is 30 minutes of Glenn Beck crying.  Seriously, on average, and I'm not even kidding, I'd be surprised if the average republican I know has an IQ over 100.  All the ultra-intelligent people I know are democrats, with very few exceptions.  Listen, I am not saying you're always wrong, I can be too, but prove it with facts, not opinions.  People would be very surprised to know that my opinion of Obama is that he sucks, but he sucks a hell of a lot less than what we could have had.  I like John McCain, but he was going to continue Bush's antics and we'd be fucked.  Enough on that topic, on to the next.

I thankfully have a ton of friends who are supportive of the gay marriage legislation that has passed.  Sadly, I have some friends who think it's terrible.  They scream about the fact that it's not a healthy place for a child to grow up  in.  First, they are only getting married right now. So the kid argument is moot.  As for the child rearing conundrum, I'm going to give you three scenarios and you tell me which sounds worse.  1. A man and a woman who fight and end up in divorce using the kid as a pawn.  2. Two loving men or two loving women who raise their kid to be understanding of everyone and to accept people for who they are.  3. A woman who has a baby, but didn't have sex with her husband and the baby walks around telling everyone he's the son of God. Now which one sounds the most stable?

We all have our guilty pleasures in life and mindless TV has always been one, but the de-evolution of the human mind seems to be in overdrive. You revolve your schedules and your DVR around the most mindless shows.  How the hell do you do it? I just can't handle the mentality of people who wake up on Thursday morning and go on facebook and write Jerzey Thursday.  It's fucking sad.  Remember when people used to watch Dallas and Dynasty? It was a fantasy.  Rich, good looking people who epitomized the American dream.....plus some hanky-panky on the side.  But Jersey Shore?  This is everything we strive in life not to be and all you morons have made these ignorant fucks millionaires.  These same people have made a celebrity out of Casey Anthony.  I find it funny, that nobody knows who the West Memphis Three are, but everyone knows who Pauly D is.  When Abercrombie and Fitch offered that guy money not to wear their clothing, I saw at least twenty posts of the news article.  Who the fuck cares?  Does anyone buy clothing based on what they see a moron in a wife beater wearing?  Doesn't anyone feel a little silly watching people that are arguably dumber than them, trying to be even dumber?  Guess not.  We all have our guilty pleasures, but stupidity shouldn't be one.

You know what I haven't heard anyone mention recently, but heard about it constantly from 2001-2008?  The fucking war!  Unless someone posts something on Facebook asking everyone to repost in honor of someone has died, it goes unnoticed.  I find it funny that I mention the hypicrosy of my so-called "concerned with the political landscape" constantly talking about Casey Anthony while soldiers are still dying and within a week, 14, yes 14 of my flag waving Republican friends posted different posts about soldiers dying.  Glad to see I could be of assistance. Listen, I hate flag waving, because it's so phony.  I don't love my country unconditionally, because unless you're one years old and need a tit to suck on to live, it's not a natural response to anything.  Loving unconditionally is a biproduct of lacking knowledge (see religion or that annoying uncle at family barbecues).  I just think that if you wanna be a flag waving American than admit when people you support fuck it up for everyone else.  Admit that it's impossible to care about every soldier who dies in the line of duty.  Don't pick and choose who is important and who isn't.  Stop babbling about our judicial system, when someone nobody but Nancy Grace cares about gets off and you are appalled.  Chances are the system has benefited you at some point also.  I'm not saying you shouldn't care, but let's stop with the "please re-post" shit on Facebook.  If I don't re-post it doesn't mean I'm a communist, that I don't love my mother or that I hope everyone with cancer dies.  So seriously, shut the fuck up.

Another thing that is starting to get to me is people telling me what is healthy and what isn't.  Listen, if I wanna drink a few beers and eat nothing but tomato and avocados, please don't tell me how I'm killing myself as you drive by with your Mocha Coolata.  I don't want to hear how read meat will kill me when you have high blood pressure and you supposedly only eat cottage cheese and alfalfa sprouts.  I understand what is healthy and what is not.  I usually eat fairly healthy, but I have two vices; I like to eat and I like to drink.  I've lost more than 50 lbs three times, so I obviously know what I'm talking about.  Do I excel at staying in shape?  No, but I also don't look like an Ethiopian with an orange spray tan.

I wish I could document the number of people who complained in the winter about the cold and the snow and then followed it up with complaints about the heat.  It's called weather.  Now I hate the heat and I do complain about it, but you don't hear me complaining about the cold.  I love the cold.  It warms me.  If you're a normal human being and you sweat when it's 80 degrees, the heat sucks.  If you are said normal person and you get cold when it's 40 degrees, put on a sweater or sweatshirt.  It's that simple.  How can you complain about something that is so simple to remedy?

Every once in a while I awaken in some serious pain.  I have some serious ailments, which unfortunately due to this country's shit health care plans and some serious fucking over by Manhattan College, couldn't be fixed.  A lot of people make comments about me bitching and moaning.  To those people I say a grandiose "FUCK YOU."  Ever hear the cliche "walk a mile in one's shoes?"  Well imagine you couldn't bend your knee to tie those shoes without being in pain.  Imagine sitting in a chair for a mere twenty minutes and not being able to straighten out your legs?  Well if you can't imagine that, then please keep your comments to yourself.

I have a very simple, honest question for my friends who are Yankees fans.  Listen, I appreciate your franchise's success.  I'm in awe of it.  I have said many times, they are the best franchise in professional sports.  I do not deny their overall greatness, however, why is it then that in 2004 I was told "26 rings."  In 2007, I was told "26 rings."  In 2009, when I pointed out we'd won two of the last six and you guys had won once in the last six, the response was "What have you done for me lately?"  Doesn't this seem like a little bit of a contradiction in boasting technique? I'm all for trash talk, but keep it consistent.

This is completely unimportant in the grand scheme of things, but why do people who cheat on their golf scores keep score at all?  I played in a foursome three weeks ago and I had my best round ever.  I hit the ball like a 12 year old girl and I'm not very good.  I play about three times a year and it's impossible for me to get better.  I shot a legit 89. I made some great putts, I hit every par 3 off the tee and just made good shots.  Only two flubs the whole day.  The guys I played with regularly shoot in the low 90's (according to them).  They shot 104, 106 and 110 respectively.  They all admitted they had bad rounds. Here's the thing.  They really shot 112, 114, and 114 (one guy took a nine on a par four, when he hit three balls in the woods, took an illegal drop, then took five shots to reach the green and had a 30' putt.  That's an illegal 12 without putting and he took a nine.  So the following week when they said they shot 85, 88 and 89, I was a little skeptical.  I don't care, but it makes me wonder.
  
Finally, and I'm going back to politics for a minute.  I'm currently out of work and it's lead me to try and think of brilliant money making schemes.  I keep searching for that elusive light bulb to go off and I think it has finally started to flicker.  A few of my more boisterous and intellect lacking friends, who find it impossible to go a day without ripping Obama, even though their problems have been the same for about six years, have given me an idea.  I'm actually going to back everything they say.  Everything they complain and blame democrats and say should be done by republicans I'm going to follow to a tee.  So here's my business plan:

Fight these loose immigration laws.  I'm going to go to local businesses and rat them out to the government.  All the local landscapers, restaurants and construction companies will be the first on my list.  I will make sure they are fined and the people deported.  No more immigrant workers at low pay.  Now these businesses will have to pay people on the books.  Republicans are correct.  I'm sure nobody will mind paying $100 to have your front yard mowed or $20 for a hamburger at the local pub.  The business owners are all republicans, so why would they mind?  Then I'm going to take a look at their books and all the payroll taxes that have been avoided since the illegal immigrants or off the books employees have worked for them.  I've gotta imagine that even a company showing a $200,000 gross would be about $20,000 in payroll taxes.  Imagine how that would help the government.  Then, I'd form a subdivision to make sure that these employers are offering their employees health care benefits, since a universal plan is considered socialism.  I'd make sure that every expense that they use for write-offs is valid.  So when Joe blow takes his kids to Disney, I'd make sure that he pays for that out of pocket and doesn't use it as a tax deduction under travel and entertainment.  I'd also make sure that no overtime is given either.  Instead of paying someone time and half for 6-7 hours, I'd have that business hire someone else for the part time work.  If you have four employees getting eight hours of overtime, I'd make sure they hired another person for 32 hours, thus lowering unemployment, which from what I'm hearing is suddenly a concern of Republicans.  Finally, I'd immediately fine every business that subs work out to foreign countries to increase their profit margin.  I'd tax them 10% of the profit they made and put that towards our welfare and unemployment system.  I'd also have all the owners take a piss test.  They are always complaining about welfare recipients and championing the Florida law of drug testing before receiving benefits (which I actually have no problem with and support it fully), so let's test them.  If they pass, no problem.  If they fail, they have to sponsor one person on welfare for one year.  We'll call it the Hypocrite Tax.  Imagine if everyone you knew who smoked pot, did blow, or took E donated that money to a food bank or to a homeless shelter.   America would be a greater place.  So I'm looking for funding.  It can be private.  I'll be the asshole everyone hates.  I'm used to it.

Finally, I'd like to add that I'm not nearly as angry as I appear.  I'm actually in a pretty good place mentally.  I've got a lot of stress, but a few hours a day, it's been melted away.  I don't know how long this will last, I usually fuck these things up, but as of now, I feel like I can concentrate on someone else for a change.   Sure it would be nice to have money to throw around, but honestly, it's nice to be liked for who I am and not what I can buy.  That being said, I'd love to do something special for the one bright spot in my life.  I have some thoughts, but if you've read the previous thoughts, you know I need help.  

Disclaimer:  I did call out one or two people.  I'd be shocked if they read this, but there is nothing I haven't said anything that isn't true.  If you think any statements are about you, to be honest, they probably aren't.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Hypothetical Scenario: Republican Point of View

A girl's ex-boyfriend got her pregnant, beat the shit out of her, stole all her money and broke up with her at a bar.  You walk into the bar, see she's in need of comfort and start talking to her.  You know you can't make everything better in one night, but you really like her and want to do the right thing.  You start dating that night. 

According to the Republican point of view: You're the father, you're being brought up on charges of assault and theft and the ex-boyfriend is absolved of everything thanks to you.  I think I'm starting to understand now.

Bachmann/Palin 2012.  The Democrats need someone to blame...oh wait, if they are elected, it's still our fault?

The Most Dominant Athlete of Our Time

I am 41.  I have watched MJ and Jeter get ring after ring with the rest of their All-Star teams.  I watched Tiger Woods, pre-meltdown.  I watched Kobe and Shaq.  I watched Bird, Johnson, Kareem and Dr. J.  I watched Gretzsky and Lemieux. I watched Edwin Moses and Carl Lewis.  I watched Larry Holmes, Mike Tyson and Julio Cesar Chavez. I watched Bill Rodgers and Grete Weitz.  I watched Javier Sotomayer jump 8' (the second most amazing athlete ever).  I've seen many, but in my opinion, for seven years, there was only one athlete who changed the way I watched baseball.  Pedro Martinez.

Pedro Martinez was one of the few players in team sports that made you forget about everyone else on the field.  When he pitched, everyone seemed to be in awe.  For seven years between 1997 and 2003, he set a pace which was impossible to compete with. At somewhere between 5'9-5'11 and 170 lbs soaking wet, Pedro dominated from start to finish.  During that time, he pitched to an incredible 118 wins and 36 losses (almost a 77% winning percentage).  He won three Cy Young awards, came in second twice and third once.  He was even injured one of those years.  He had 1761, strikeouts in that period for an average of 251 per year.  If he had only pitched those seven seasons, he'd still be 92nd all-time in strikeouts.  Take a minute.   Yeah.  His ERA during that period was equally scary at 2.20.  That's good for an aces top five or six starts of a year.  He did that game in and game out for seven years.  During this time, he average less than a base runner and inning.

Stats aside, there was just something about Pedro.  Maybe it's because he was so much smaller than other power pitchers.  Maybe it's because of his attitude.  Maybe it's because in our lifetime, we haven't seen anything like it.  If you compare these seven seasons with any other pitchers top seven in the last 35 years, nobody even comes close.  To put it in perspective, Roy Halladay is the most dominant pitcher in baseball and his personal bests, for one season, are a 76% winning percentage (16-5), an ERA of  2.40 and 219 strikeouts.  Pedro's worst were better. 

Michael Jordan needed someone to pass to and to receive from.  Joe Montana needed Jerry Rice.   Tiger sometimes needed someone to choke.  Everyone somehow benefited from a circumstance, but when Pedro was on the mound, it was him against the world. Pedro usually won.  Sometimes stats tell the whole story, but in this case, they only scratch the surface on how dominant he was.  He'll be remembered for being fiesty, for tossing Zimmer, for some negative things that aren't warranted.  In a time of steroids, arrests, and pretty much being a jerk, he was a standup guy, gave back to not only his community but to that from which he came. He'll be a hall of famer when the time comes, but the reality is, for a brief period in time, he was the best player, in his sport, to play the game.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills

If you've been paying attention to the news today, you've heard that the trio called the West Memphis Three has been released from prison after 17 years of incarceration.  I'm not going to blog and let my personal feelings of the judicial system bias what this movie depicts, but everyone should see it.  For every Casey Anthony case, there are many more of these.  Three adolescents who aren't smart enough or rich enough to defend themselves against lynch mobs.  These boys, accused of taking three other boys lives, had in return, their lives taken away for seventeen years.   Below is a link to the first movie on Netflix.

http://movies.netflix.com/Search?v1=Paradise%20Lost:%20The%20Child%20Murders%20at%20Robin%20Hood%20Hills&oq=paradise%20lost&ac_posn=2

While not as powerful as it's predecessor, the second part, filmed three years later is equally as harrowing.  Below is a Netflix link to that film.

http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/Paradise_Lost_2_Revelations/60021321?trkid=2361637

The movies show an awful tale about how communities and our country wants closure to horrific crimes, regardless to whether the real criminals are caught.  Today these boys walk free, but in "the land of the free," I'd say that is a bit of a contradiction.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Few Theories I Have

Women are given a handbook at birth called "never let them know what you mean." Men receive a handbook that is called "and a side of bacon."

Man got too cocky in the 80's and now all pizzerias suck.  Tombstone is officially the best pizza made.

Fashion is cyclical.  I was with a girl wearing a snap bracelet watch, then saw girls wearing daisy dukes and a guy wearing mirrored shades.  Thank goodness I saved all my Zubaz pants.

The rise in gas prices is a test.  Bottled water costs more per gallon and nobody realizes.

Your teenage girls dressing like whores is punishment for you wearing a jeans jacket with a Stryper patch on it.  Or was it Winger?

Pixar movies are proof that drugs aren't really all that bad.  Drugs are proof that you can watch pretty much anything that looks cool.

About three years ago, Oprah relieved God of his duties.  How else do you explain Obama being fortunate enough to run against an old codger and a blunt force trauma victim?  Oh wait, Sarah Palin wasn't bashed in the head?  My bad!

Tiger Woods is the face of Golf - adulterer/sex addict.  Kobe is the face of basketball - rapist/anti-gay.  Ray Lewis is the face of football - murderer/liar.  A-Rod is the face of baseball - steroid user/jerk.  Keeping buying your kids their jerseys and then wonder why at 21 they are working in a meth lab.

The Rapture is coming and it's not going to be decided by any religious happenstance.  If you watch the Jersey Shore, say hi to the devil for me.

Cooking shows are some of the highest rated shows on TV, yet nobody can cook.  Proof that the average person's cognitive skills are that of a turkeys.

Ellen Degeneres, Britney Spears and Sarah Jessica Parker are proof that unattractive and fairly talentless women can be hugely succesful thanks in part to women with low self esteem.  Jimmy Fallon, Drake and Chris Klein are proof that women with low self esteem will like any guy with nice teeth.

Women say guys are pigs.  And this is why we love bacon.

Kicking Feng Shui's Ass

A lot of people have theories on why relationships work.  Some trust the zodiac, some believe online dating questionnaires and some people believe in fate.  People also believe that how their furniture and tapestries are placed mean inner peace.  Some think money can't buy you love and some believe it can.  There are a lot of things that come into play, but I believe there is one thing that truly determines if a relationship has any chance at all.  Where one sleeps.

I remember listening to a friend of my parents speak one night.  He was a spiritual man.  By spiritual, I mean he smoked a lot of weed and most of his experiences were bi-products of a combination of the drugs and the fact he was looking for answers.  He spoke about relationships and he went around the table and asked the people (mostly couples, but some divorced) which side of the bed they slept on.  All the marriages going strong had the man sleeping on the left side when facing the bed, those who had suffered relationship loss were the opposite.  Now this was a very small group to prove his point, but it stayed with me.  Over the years, I used his statements with my experiences and my ability to notice others.

I took it a little further and started thinking about how people are so into furniture placement. I realized the side isn't as important, but placement.  What I've concluded is that relationships in which the man sleeps closest to the room's entry tend to work.  Obviously, I'm using heterosexual relationships only, because for the most part, that's the majority of relationships I know.  Now, while I'm not saying this guarantees a successful relationship, I think it's a precursor.  I actually know people who switched sides after a move and the relationship ended quickly. 

My theory is that when the female feels secure, even in her most vulnerable time, while sleeping, that she can feel confident enough to completely let go.  When the man feels like he is in control and the alpha, he is confident that she will not stray.  The whole idea behind my theory is that, on the off chance, there was ever an intruder, then the man would be the first line of defense.  In many ways we're know different than animals in the wild.  Survival of the fittest doesn't always mean the difference between life and death, but lasting love or heartbreak..  That's my feeling, but then again.  I'm a little full of shit.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Some Completely Irrelevant Things People Don't Know About Me

I have hit Michael Kay with my car (very lightly).  One year later I had his nephew in one of my sports classes.  As a gift, they gave me a Yankees hat.  On a side note, the other side of the family was cousins with wrestling's McMahon family.

I rarely check my real mail every day, but my e-mail constantly.

I once stayed awake (in college for over 100 hours straight doing a paper).  It's the only grade on a paper I received lower than a B+ on.  It was Kinesiology.

While running down the street in NYC, I once knocked Gene Shallit on his ass.  He got up and said "Fuck You!"  I said "You're Gene Shallit!"  I was 14.

 I once drank a fifth of Gordon's Gin and two 40oz of Old English 800 in one night....when I was 13.

I skipped 3rd grade and got held back in 10th.

I scored a 92 on a Mensa practice exam....I also went to summer school twice.

Once during Monday Night Football my buddy Kenny and I ate either 120 or 140 Buffalo Wings before the game ended.  They were 10 cents a piece.  During that time, I drank 3 pitchers of beer.  More impressively, he drank three pitchers of Coke.

Something for people who have only known me over the last 20 years will nor believe these:

In seventh grade, I ran the seventh fastest mile in my school (grades between 4-8).  I was in seventh grade.

I once high jumped 5' 8" when I was 5' 7".

While trying out for a college baseball team, I hit a ball off the 340 sign against a guy who made the majors.

I once knicked the rim with my finger in HS. 

In High School I could throw a football 55 yards with my right arm and 30 with my left.

OK, enough lame sports stuff.

I took my SAT drunk in HS and got a 1040.  I didn't listen to to the instructions and finished in less than 30 minutes.  When my brother was taking the pretests, I took one when I was 26, drunk once again and got a 1260.  There's a lesson in there somewhere.

I got a 99 on my 11th grade English Regents.

I once kissed Jennifer Connolly.  Yes, that Jennifer Connolly.  As my friend Luke tells me..."I'm sure she tells that story as often as you do."

I've lost over 50 lbs three different times in my life.  I consider myself a nutritionist!

I once walked seven miles home from a bar.  A month after I tore my ACL.

I once drove a car 120 miles and hour....it was an Astrovan!

I am adopted and know the mother's name and have no desire to meet her.

I was born in Hollywood.....Florida.

I'm not proud of this, but once had a BAC of 4.6.  The doctor told me I should be in a coma.  I was totally coherent and hitting on the nurse stitching my knee.

I consider three of my ex-girlfriends to be some of my best friends in the world.

I hate Coke & Cherries, but like Cherry Coke.

I'm a bit of an open book, haha

Ever Wonder Why?


Ever wonder why there are perforations on toilet paper?   Seriously, does anyone have problems ripping this stuff?  Does anyone use one square at a time?

Ever wonder why the news is on at 7am, 6pm and 11pm?  Isn’t one of the biggest issues in our country, people not being up on current events?  Maybe stories of dead girls and war isn’t what people want to listen to when we’re eating breakfast, eating dinner or going to sleep.

Ever wonder why hot dogs come in packs of eight, but sodas and beer come in packs of six?   Doesn’t it seem like the BBQ gods would have done something about that?  Don’t get me started on Hebrew National hot fogs coming in packs of seven, when the buns come in packs of eight.

Ever wonder why when you buy coffee in a can, half the can is empty, but when you buy it in the bag it’s full to the point it’s spilling out?  Why can’t they fill the can?  Is there the same law as the potato chips bag?

 Ever wonder why the best restaurants have the best bread baskets?  Aren’t those the ones that you don’t want to ruin your appetite at?  Even the butter is better.

Ever wonder why supermarkets put the slowest cashier at the Express Lane?  I guess when you think about it, the words stop and shop is an oxymoron in itself.

Ever wonder why people write how busy they are in their Facebook statuses?  Not much to add to that statement.

Ever wonder why church is on Sunday?  If God rested on this day, why should his followers have to wake up early and go to listen to someone else who happens to be working?

Ever wonder why happy hour is after work, but before you get home to your family?  Says a lot about the state of family in America.

Ever wonder why the people who scream the loudest about illegal immigration are the small business owners who hire them?  Oddly enough, these are the same people who eat at chains, instead of authentic Mexican restaurants.

Ever wonder why the girls who dress the sluttiest are the ones who call men pigs?  How about you have some respect for yourself before you generalize our thought process.

Ever wonder why the girls you know who actually get sports are single?  This seems the most ironic dating stereotype of all.  Plus, is there anything sexier than a girl in a baseball jersey with a pony tail sticking out of the back of her cap?  In case you’re wondering, unless she’s wearing a lace get up with a garter belt, the answer is no.

Ever wonder why inflation has affected the everyday things families used to enjoy on a night out (movies, museums, sporting events, fine dining) but the price of things to stay at home are going down (televisions, computers, video games systems, junk food)?

Every wonder why the people you actually know with money are rarely the most intelligent and vice versa?   You may also notice, those who call people shallow are usually the most materialistic.

Ever wonder why the people who are most appalled with the likes of Casey Anthony, OJ and other villains, are the ones who never stop talking about them and promote their celebrity status?