Saturday, March 28, 2009

Something to Ponder

Beating myself up for blowing an Algebra exam...again...I decided to abandon my mathematical woes and travel down the internet highway to see if anything interesting caught my eye. Now, I don't know where I've been the last three months, but apparently it is out of the loop because I had no idea that "earth hour" was upon us or how I could become more involved. But more involved I shall be (hence passing the word through my blog) for I have not missed it the fun.

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is asking everyone to turn off their lights at 8:30 PM local time and keep them off for one hour. This action is not so much to save energy as it is to make a statement to our governments' leadership that global warming is a real and pervasive issue that needs to be taken seriously. To switch off your lights is to give a vote for earth. Also check out the WWF site and make a donation or purchase one of many interesting and culturally expanding gifts there.

At Earth Hours one can now follow last year's "Earth Hour" celebration as well as see how the dimming of lights this year is progressing. The 60 hours of darkness has already begun but it will be awhile before it hits here in the United States. I will be participating and I hope you will as well.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Remaking of Another Classic

Yes, the Farley Boys are at it again. News is out that they have closed the deal and MGM is taking the job. A project that has been years in the planning will now come to fruition, according to Variety. But the most exciting part of the entire adventure is the cast that is coming into play. Some have qualms regarding the Farley and MGM choices of actors, but this blogger is quite animated at the prospect.

Jim Carrey will be weighing in for the part of Curly. I am sure he will embrace the role of the ever irrepressible gagster by expanding on his own unusual physical dexterity. As for Sean Penn, could a more perfect match have been chosen? Penn's talent and generosity to films of late will not doubt take this picture to a new height for Farley fans. As for Benicio Del Toro, I am not personally acquainted with his comedic talents, but have been reassured by those that are that he will lend credence to such a project.

It is my understanding that this will be a behind the scenes view of the life of these three confused, talented and alcoholic men. Though it will most likely have incredibly serious undertones, aspects of Farley movies that some viewers miss completely, it will most assuredly be projected in a manner full of the slapstick and silliness associated with those lovable Stooges of yesteryear. Carrey and Penn have already signed onto the production and it is being reported that Del Toro is in negotiations as I write. What an interesting undertaking it will be.

Production will begin sometime in the fall of this year and hopefully the release will be in 2010. As an old fan of these black and white Saturday afternoon fun-fests, I cannot wait until this production is in the cinemas. I am sure it will be a must DVD to add to my ever-enlarging collection of movies.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Little Sunshine on a Damp and Cold Day

On a day that is overcast and gray in a country suffering from a recession that fills all news sources with blurbs that are as dark as the skies outside, the Today show aired a wonderful little vignette that lifted my spirit and my lips while making a few tears paint my cheeks. Forty years ago, this baby's family was killed in an apartment fire. Since she was an early teen, she has wondered about this man who was kind enough to give her his breath of life, as her stepmother reminded her. So she went on a search and finally found him.

My daughter, who is 25 and still so naive in many ways, has had a very privileged life. She grew up in the military so was not taught prejudice. She travelled the globe living in far off, exotic places and was raised both here and abroad so she does not comprehend racial hatred. So therefore, as this news piece was airing and I was as still as a cat in a room full of rockers, she was quite unaware of the significance of the story. She could only see life being given to a child. What is not depicted clearly above is that the child is black.

At a time when racial tension in the country was at it's peak, this white, Irish Catholic firefighter from Boston, an area that was rife with tension and hatred between blacks and whites, held this small negro infant in his huge, gentle, yet capable hands and kissed her with the breath she so desperately needed in order to survive. That is the miracle, that is the heart of the story, that is why we have hope. I would like to think that any firefighter would have had the honor and compassion to do what he did, but having been alive during that time period in history as well as having highly educated extended family members that hate black people just because they are black, I can imagine there are some that would rather have let her die then place their own mouth upon her. But not Firefighter Carroll who did what he knew was best. And thank heavens above he did.

I don't know if it took forty years to find him, or that long to get the nerve to find him, but find him she did. And the reunion was special and heartfelt...and by the looks of it, her children have found new members to add their extended and extending family. Blessed may they all be.

Monday, March 23, 2009

We Need Your Help!


I follow several blogs, and sometimes I like what I've read so much I feel the need to mention it here. This, however is not a post because I liked or enjoyed the blog, it is a sincere request to follow the link and read about a place in Seattle, Washington that is the comfortable and comforting stepping stone between the here and the hereafter. This is a place where hopelessness and helplessness are overcome through guidance, friendship and love. The staff are angels that go above and beyond the typical call of duty for those in their field. They take pride in their work and they gain strength from the love they give as well as receive. Unfortunately, they are in the same monetary bind as so many non-profit organizations in the United States today. But even in my dire financial straights, I can find $5 or $10 to donate to them that may allow their doors to remain open for a bit longer. I sincerely hope that you can as well.

Thank you for your thoughtfulness.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Obama on Leno

I was surfing the blogs trying to pull thoughts together when I ran across a blog by Mr. Stiles at Stiles Point. He was "very disappointed" in a comment made by President Obama on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno regarding his bowling skills which Obama compared to being worthy of the Special Olympics. Now, I must say that the comment is definitely not "politically correct" and any politician should remember that they must appear to be pure as the driven snow once they reach office (even if they did inhale) but comparing it to Imus and his "ho" comment is taking it just a little too far. Calling someone a HO and speaking of Special Olympic bowling skills are, at least in this readers eyes, two different types of insults, not that I am making excuses for such a fax pas.

Even comparing it to the previous President is a bit of a far reach. Let's see, which is the more stupid comment, "...bowled a was like Special Olympics or something..." or "I am the Decider"... well never mind. One was trying to be funny and the other was funny without trying. But Stiles is probably correct in his field day comment regarding the media. If the former President had said something so self-abasing, it would have surprised us all and the liberal media would have jumped at the chance to make him look the idiot....again. Whereas when Obama made such a blunder, only the Conservatives were jumping for joy....wait, this sounds strangely familiar...isn't this similar to the last 8 years, and the 8 years before that, and the 4 years before that, and the.....Funny what changing shoes can do!

I will admit that I do not believe it was his most brilliant comparison but I doubt if Obama had said "my bowling would make Caroline look good" the rest of America would have gotten the joke. He could have compared himself to a brown bear, but the animal rights activists would have been up in arms. Who knows, that might even have provoked the NAACP as well. Okay, maybe he could have said, "I should have been playing with the one-armed paper hangers" but I'm sure someone who knew someone missing that appendage would have been outraged. Well, maybe he could have said, "Man I SUCK at bowling" but that kind of language coming from a President of the United States is deplorable. So, I suppose his best avenue would have been to keep his mouth firmly closed regarding his lack of bowling technique and skills and just continued with the basketball comment which, I did notice, did NOT cause great furor in the African American community (or any community wanting to raise and eyebrow and a ruckus). Is it because Leno is NOT a politician?

I suppose, once reaching an elected office, it is best not to attempt to have a sense of humor of any kind any more. Allow the common folks like me and you to make the blunders, fax pas, and stupid jokes. I wonder, though, when did we begin to expect such exalted perfection in our leaders? I thought we saved that for God.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Rewards for Failure

I look at this picture and understand exactly the want to put fingers around another's neck and choke the living daylights out of them. In yesterday's Washington Post I read and reread Mr. Libby's editorial explaining the reasons bonuses were paid to certain employees. In "Repairs, and Repayment", he makes this profound statement:

"Mistakes were made at AIG, and on a scale that few could have imagined possible." He goes on to state, "...AIG has made a set of retention payments to employees based on a compensation system that prior management put into place...I would never have approved the retention contracts....It was distasteful to have to make these payments. But we concluded that the risks to the company, and therefore the financial system and economy, were unacceptably high."

In today's paper, I read that he asked that the awards be returned. Some employees did so while others grudgingly kept their take. When asked by Congress for the names of these people, Mr. Libby balked and used the excuse that these certain employees are too good to lose. My only comment after mulling over his excuses for bad behavior was "WTF?"

I don't know about the rest of the United States but this simple citizen is so sick of the questionable choices made by upper management regarding outrageously high bonuses for poor decisions, unethical choices, and basic bad behaviour. Why should we settle for excuses? Then, he goes so far as to comment that he didn't want to lose these employees who would have walked if not given their compensation? Let them walk! In our struggling economy do you think they will actually leave a company that is still paying their salary? Does he not understand the job market today?

It is attitudes such as Mr. Libby's that have gotten us in the financial and moral crisis in which we find ourselves today. But this is the way we have raised the present generation. These employees are the same people that went to birthday parties for others and expected to take home lots of treats themselves. These are the same people who were raised to believe that EVERYONE is a winner, EVERYONE gets chosen for the team, EVERYONE gets a star. They have not learned that there are no rewards for making a muck of something. They have not learned the lesson of true failure. And until we take a step back and LEARN from our mistakes rather than be given bonuses for all the bad choices we make, we never are going to get it and the downward spiral will continue.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

10 Things About Music Titles

(Image courtesy of Miss Fipi Lele)

Because I really am trying to begin focusing on the positive aspects of my life, I decided to write something that would lift my spirits, so to speak. I sat here with my face in the palms of my hands giving my mind free access to wander at will across the years, over the cloudy residues of the past. It stopped in Mr. Hincher's 9th Grade math class.

Mr Hincher was THE most boring teacher in the world. The nicest man you could ever meet with a vivacious wife and two precious children that I would babysit for whenever they needed me, but dead boring. He was an accountant who should never have decided to teach math to ANYONE, let alone high school students. (Can you see where this is going?) So there I was in his class learning got it...graph.

I have no idea how long I was there, but the experience made me want to poke out my eyes. So instead of focusing on something positive, I shall tax my musical skills and try something creative. Coming up with songs or song titles for 10 things about me. I hope you enjoy this because it should be a fun list to produce!

1. Me: Crazy by Patsy Cline
2. Favorite color: Yellow by Coldplay
3. Favorite vacation: Spanish Moon by Little Feat
4. Biggest disappointment: D-I-V-O-R-C-E by Tammy Wynette
5. Biggest success: Kids from Bye Bye Birdie
6. Best friend: Don't Stop by Fleetwood Mac
7. Favorite Past-time: Love in Vain by Eric Clapton
8. Adulthood: Time to Pretend by MGMT
9. Family: Hard to Handle by Grateful Dead
10. Childhood: Somewhere Over the Rainbow from The Wizard of Oz or Yesterday by the Beatles

Who would have thought?

I never would have suspected that Algebra and Nutritional Science would be the final culprits. I won't blame it entirely on school, I mean I had a lot going downhill before these classes, but I believe they have pushed me over the edge and I'm free falling into the no zone. Can someone please explain to me why I, at 50 years of age, need to know how to graph x and y? Isn't it enough that I just figure out what they are? My eyes are bad and I can barely see the graph on the computer that needs my input. I'm off by one number every time, damn my eyes. I bet Marty Feldman had better vision than I do, but his eyes were bigger and jutting 6 inches out of his face so EVERYTHING was closer.

Nutritional science I get, it's just got a lot of research, which I don't seem to have time to do considering I spend every free moment trying to do these freaking graphs. (See, this is what happens when you start getting over confident...the "egg on your face" gods set you back on the humble track.)

I think I need sleep. Except when I sleep I dream about Algebra. Isn't it bad enough that I have to do it during the day, but at night too? Why didn't I finish college when I still had working grey cells?

Calgon (or Sam Elliott) take me away!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Enough Already

I am so completely sick of hearing Limbaugh vs White House I think I will scream! Hey people in the White House, shut up already and do not answer to the Republicans who are trying to stir conflict. This type of discussion is debasing and further remarks from you only add fuel to an unnecessary fire.

I will say I enjoyed someones comment saying that Obama should accept Limbaugh's gauntlet of a debate but only if Limbaugh accepts Obama's challenge to a basketball on one....may the better man win! HAHAHAHA! That would be something I might enjoy watching if I liked seeing slugs get squashed. Shoot, considering the slug I may make an exception. Call me when the challenge has been thrown and met!

Maybe the debate should actually be between Limbaugh and Moore. Those two fat bastards can duke it out between them (neither would get a word in edgeways), though of the two I would choose Michael Moore over Rush Limbaugh hands down. I feel Moore, at least, is for the whole and not the individual.

Notice how you didn't hear much from Limbaugh the last 8 years? Keep that in mind and ask yourselves..."do you really believe he wants to see Obama fail?" Crikey, if the Republicans were voted back into power in 4 years, he would be unimportant, once again, needing to depend on the bad publicity of drug dependence to get into the spotlight. It ALMOST makes me want to vote Republican....almost!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Jon Stewart is THE MAN!

I don't follow television regularly. Though I have a set in my room, it is there for dvd's as it is not connected to the dish or cable. And because I spend most of my time up here when the baby is down for a nap or his parents are home, I have weened myself of the necessity of daily visual overstimulation that having a television set on constantly supplies. When I do have the opportunity to peruse what may be airing, the television is usually set to something more focused toward toddlers than adults, so it becomes a background grey noise rather than food for thought. Alas, how lucky I was to be channel surfing today whilst the baby was being entertained by his mother. I ran across a rerun of a most entertaining bit of...well, you decide.

The Daily Show has always been a favorite of mine. The manner in which Jon Stewart disects the news and newsmakers is comically, yet painfully honest and forthright. And his recent mastication of Rick Santelli is a high point of this type of comedic blindsiding. Jason Linkins, of the Huffington Report, wrote a commentary as he too was impressed by Stewart's verbal gauntlet to CNBC. He, Linkins, went so far as to say "Stewart eviscerated CNBC". And he was not kidding.

Hopefully I have whetted your appetite for a little "Stewart-ship". Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Limbaugh - an intellectual?

Rush Limbaugh is the "voice and the intellectual force and energy behind the Republican Party". If Limbaugh is indeed the "intellectual force' behind the party, it's time for the party to change. He's an arrogant, rude, loud, obnoxious entertainer who takes himself too seriously. There are so many other voices in the party that are worth listening to as well as much more pleasing to the eardrums, so why does the Republican party continue to allow him such leverage?

Maybe it's my mistaken definition of what I believed an intellectual to be. I thought he to be a person who is erudite, attaining this elite threshold when education and scholarly pursuits had gelled leaving a mind polished and a person effaced of all rudeness or incivility. Someone who was well read on many a subject matter, not just reading and holding fast to one side's opinions, but rather being able to turn his brain around to be able to comprehend the other side of the debate.

If Rush Limbaugh is an intellectual, so is Howard Stern....

Isn't it funny how history has changed? There was a time when Democrats were loved by the "crackers" of society, those uneducated and ignorant individuals who couldn't think past their own back yard. And the Republican Party was the exemplification of the educated masses.

Makes me glad to be an Independent!