Friday, January 29, 2010

Enough Already!

Recently I've been complaining and it occurred to me that I may be complaining too much.

So, in the spirit of optimism, "half full", "partly sunny", here goes:

I love pasta.

I really do. I love elbows and spaghetti and linguine but not really penne...for some's harder to keep on the fork...which maybe should incline me to use a spoon...which I never do although I know people do eat spaghetti with a fork and a spoon...grabbing the spaghetti with the fork and then twirling it in the spoon and then putting it in the mouth.

Too much trouble. Just fork it and stuff it in, guiding it with the fork afterwards with the strands hanging down over the fork and gently rising up by virtue of the suction from the mouth. Very much to the point and taking the spoon part completely out of the less silverware to wash if you don't have a dishwasher.


Especially with garlic and oil, so-called "Alio e Olio." Very Italian, somewhat pretentious, but enormously delicious.

And "Chili con Carne."

Oh My God! The chopped meat and the onions and the garlic and the beans all smooshed around in a bed of pasta, perfectly al dente...nothing better.

And how about a good lasagne...or lasagna...with an "a"? I'm never sure how to spell it so there you are...both choose...

Anyway...back to lasagn"_"

A good tomato sauce, again with lots of garlic, and good ricotta ("riggotts" if you're a Mafia wannabee) Absolute heaven!

And while I'm at it...what is up with risotto? I really don't get it. By the time you've drenched it in sauce you might as well be eating rice...which is a hell of a lot cheaper. Usually risotto is one of the most expensive things on a menu. Why? Teeny pieces of pasta. So what.

(I just remembered that risotto is rice...I meant please substitute orzo for risotto in the above paragraph. Thank you. Risotto is fine but not pasta and therefore not one of my favorite pasta dishes...because, again, it's not pasta. Actually, I'm not that fond of risotto anyway, regardless. FYI)

Oops...complaining again...sorry.

Love pasta. Comfort food. Easy to cook. Easy to eat, spoon not withstanding, Always good.

And my favorite of all time has to be Kraft's Macaroni and Cheese. Not the store brand which is cheaper but not as good and never the stuff made to look like some cartoon character. I'm not interested in eating little Spongebobs or little Mickeys...spare me.

Just the plain old, time tested, wonderful, international orange, macaroni and cheese. And I can eat a whole entire box. can't have some. Get your own. It's only $1.00 a box. My treat!

I love pasta.

I hate Washington but I love pasta.

"Let them eat noodles"...which will actually be the story in a few years when the Chinese formally take over. Lo mein. "Remember the Mein!"

To hell with optimism...complaining is more fun.

"Damn the risotto...full boil ahead!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Yak, Yak, Yak


Who are they kidding? Are we that dillusional to really believe any of these clowns?

Government is so off course that it would take something catastrophic...such as what happened in this country a couple of hundred years change things.

But it seems to be human nature. We want what we want and we want it the way we want it and we want it now...and we want what's yours, too, by the way.

We are a community of self absorbed and, in many cases, selfish people. Sure, there are people who do good work every day, toiling in silence in their own worlds, helping countless people have better lives.

The doctors and nurses, the first responders, the teachers, the homeless and AIDS advocates and all of the others who actually do something with their lives apart from amassing wealth and buying stuff.

But the politicians and corporate honchos are living in a different universe. They are, as one of my heroes, Tom Friedman, put it the other day in The Times, living "situationally" as opposed to "sustainably."

They are concerned with today and power and money and all of the perks of office. They don't really care about the people they were elected to represent. They're not concerned with long term. Their actions speak much louder than their words. And please don't bore me with the details of how they "bring home the bacon" to their districts and/or states. That's all they do and not all the time at that. They don't think about what's good for the country or the planet or the human race. They think narrowly and selfishly.

My daughter didn't feel well the other day so we went to the doctor. He examined her and suggested a course of antibiotics if symptoms persisted. She said no.

What? You're sick but you don't want medicine that will make you feel better?

"No. It's been tested on animals and I'm against that. Animals have no choice in the matter. They can't say 'no' like a human can. Poor animals."
I had no response. While I don't want her to be sick I can't argue the merit of her argument.
Animals do feel pain and can suffer. She's right.

Why isn't she in Congress? Why aren't she and her friends running things? They get it. Kids understand, not only the problems, but they have the solutions. They are the future and they will inherit the mess we've been making for years.

But we don't think they have enough experience. They're not "old enough."

Bull. They're plenty old enough to know the difference between right and wrong and love and hate and compassion and selfishness.

Turn the country over to the teenagers!

We may have to endure too much bad music and watch our politicians with their pants falling down and their hats on backwards.

But that would be a vast improvement over what we're saddled with now.

I'd much rather have some teenagers running things than the unbelievable clowns we have in there now.

At least we'd be able to get our iPhones to work properly.

At least someone would understand these things.

Let's call out for a pizza...with extra cheese...and a 2 liter bottle of soda...and popcorn and big bags of candy and...

Let's PARTAY!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Frankly Scarlett...

If I was depressed the other day, today I'm almost suicidal.

I listened to Keith Olbermann's editorial on Justice Roberts' Supreme Court's decision to allow unfettered campaign contributions by corporations.

We're doomed.

We've surrounded ourselves with so much absolutely necessary stuff that we will never again be able to function without it. We have allowed ourselves to become slaves to modern commerce and the way in which goods and services are rendered.

We really don't do much of anything for ourselves any more and we are so busy making ends meet that we are really not paying attention to the big picture.

And we have been programmed to margainalize the people who are walking up and down the sidewalk in sandwich boards proclaiming "The End is Near."

Funny (not really) thing is that it is near.

A handful of individuals own most of everything and a handful of corporations control almost everything and politicians are so busy worrying about the cost of election (and re-election) that they have forgotten what the hell they're doing in Washington in the first place. Keith's great fear is that government will become a purchased commodity. As if it isn't already. Can anyone say Joe Lieberman...?

Who among us can chop wood or bake bread or grow or make anything? Maybe a few gentlemen farmers having "stress relief time" on the weekends but imagine having to do it all of the time, all year long. Never...and without an iPod no less! Won't happen and forget about getting Junior to help. Impossible. Gotta go to the mall!!!!

So here we are. Screwed. But I guess it's all the media's fault...especially Keith Olbermann.

All he does is complain. First about "Mission Accomplished", then about Alberto Gonzales and now about the Supreme Court.

Just another naked sandwich boarder (at least not a water boarder, if you know what I mean...) proclaiming gloom and doom.

I, for one, am not laughing at him. I really don't know what to do. I'm paralyzed.

Maybe I'll just watch a movie.

Yeah, maybe I'll watch "Gone With The Wind."

I won't think about it today.

I'll think about it tomorrow.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Once Upon A Time

Two thoughts...


My wonderful daughter is 13 today. Amazing to think that she was born "yesterday"...tempus does, in fact, fugit!! I love her more than life and could not be more proud. She's a great kid.


The world is coming to an end.

I don't see any way around it. We, as a race (human, that is), cannot seem to get out of our own way. War, greed, pollution, ignorance, illness. You name the issue, we're behind the curve.

Now, not everyone is "tone deaf." Some people, very intelligent people, are leading the effort to turn things around.

The trouble is that no one is listening. The voices of salvation are being drowned out by the idiots to whom we have ceded the power. We have given it to Washington and Wall Street and Walmart and Disney/Goldman/Lockheed/Pfizer/Aetna and every other "special interest" group that purports to represent us either in government, the media or in the economy.

We have completely abdicated our own personal responsibility. We are self absorbed sheep being slowly led to slaughter.

Wow...that sounded harsh and unbelievably pessimistic...but what else can we assume is happening...and what else do we think will be the result of our inaction.

It seems to be over. All that seems to be left is the end...whenever that happens and in whatever manner.

Sure...we can hope. We can hope that the politicians will begin to think about what is good for the country instead of what is good for them or their party.

We can hope that the business community will begin to think about the long term management of resources instead of the bottom line.

We can hope that all of us will recognize that the planet is a closed environment and if we continue to rape and abuse it it will leave home and or hack us to death in our sleep.

We can hope...but that seems to be all we can do at this moment. That is because we put our futures in the hands of others, so-called leaders in whatever sphere (business, government, religion, sports, the arts) rather than taking it upon ourselves to define our outcomes and work toward goodness and health for everybody...not just a select few.

I'm not advocating insurrection or revolution or anarchy. I'm advocating responsibility and a community view...what's good for everybody...not just "me." (I know, naive and utopian...that's why I'm so depressed about it...)

And forget about Barack Hussein Obama...he's as full of it as a Christmas turkey, interested in his own image and place in history. But he's no different than any other politician. Says all the right things before the fact and reneges afterwards...just like some guy trying to get into some babe's pants..."will you still love me tomorrow...?" Thank you Carole King. (I voted for him and would again...was in Denver when he accepted the nomination...hope he can change...after all that's what he endlessly promised...change, change...CHANGE!!!!!!!....JEEZ!!!!)

Yeah...we can hope. We can hope for a peaceful die in our sleep.

I just hope my 13 year old angel gets all the way through her glorious life before it's all over...and all of her terrific little friends too.

I'm only asking for 90 to 100 more years. See! That's exactly what I'm talking's all about me...what about 101 years from now...what about those people...!

One can only hope.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Oh My...

On the one hand Scott Brown's victory in Massachusetts is a good thing. The proverbial "wake up" call to Obama and the Democrats. "Figure it out or you're out...!"

On the other hand it's a nightmare because we have now taken the ability of Obama to accomplish anything away from him and given it to the Republicans.

Here's the part that I don't get:

Imagine that you hired a carpenter to work at your house. Imagine that, over a period of time, he screwed up everything that he touched, but, naturally had a very good reason for the failure.

But, nevertheless, he was a failure at fixing up your house. fire him and hire a different carpenter, one who says he can fix the problem in short order. He doesn't have much experience (neither did the first guy mind you, who seemed to have a bit more and came from a good family) But he's attractive and knows a few famous people, locally, who say he's very nice. And articulate. And clean.

Then, much to your consternation, he doesn't get it done within the timeframe that you anticipated...not a timeframe that he had claimed he could deliver in but one that you imagined would be fair.

So, you put him on notice and bring in another guy to help.

You hire...

Wait..drum roll please...


That is, essentially, what happened last night in Massachusetts. The voters, in their understandable frustration and anger at the state of the country economically, elected an untested Republican so he can go to Washington and join his brethern in obstructing Obama in realizing his agenda.

Who created the mess we're in? Who created Iraq and Afgahnistan? Who deregulated Wall Street which led to the meltdown in the economy? Who allowed the insurance companies to make hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars from outrageous health care premiums? Who disempowered the EPA, helping contribute to a crisis in the environment?

Yeah, sure, that's a good idea. Let's bring back the guys responsible for the whole mess. Now I understand that Democrats from Kennedy through Johnson, Carter and Clinton (and now Obama) have their fair share of responsibility. But I'm not talking about 15 or 20 or 30 or 40 years ago. I'm talking about right now. I'm talking about the legacy of what W left to Barry.

We'll see...we'll see...

But "gird your loins", as Stanley Tucci's character says in The Devil Wears Prada (arguably one of Meryl Streep's greatest performances.)

Here comes Sarah...!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Have a Nice Life

I was reminded last night at the total and complete unpredictability of life.

It was the fall of 1970. I was at The University of Arizona at Tucson. I had gotten a ticket in Phoenix on my way to Prescott, in Northern Arizona, to visit a friend. A cop had cited me for hitchhiking...but then drove me to a place, just a few feet off of the Interstate, where it was legal. Why he just didn't do that in the first place is beyond me...maybe it was my long hair, scraggly attempt at a beard, dirty jeans, backpack (actually, knapsack back then...) and guitar. That might have been the reason...God Damned Hippie...!

Anyway, I had borrowed my roomate's little blue Honda 125cc and went up to Phoenix to pay the ticket (not aware that I could mail in the $40.00...idiot!)

The motorcycle broke down and an ordeal ensued that resulted in extra expenditure, three days in Tempe and an interesting moment in the "where are they now?" category.

I met a woman in a gas station with whom I hooked up for a couple of days. She was travelling with another, older, couple and I was invited to stay with them for the night at the Holiday Inn. The next night we "crashed" with some kids at Arizona State. The band "Sugarloaf" of "Green Eyed Lady " fame was playing at a fraternity party. That seemed amazing to me at the time because they had a hit...on the radio! What the hell were they doing at Arizona State University...for free...?! The following day I got the bike fixed and went back to Tucson, after paying the ticket (see above...)

The interesting thing to me is that I had never met this girl before that moment. We spent two nights together and then went our separate ways. I never saw her again.

Ok, it was the early 70's...just out of the sixties with all of the sexually revolutionary stuff and women's lib, etc. But where did she go?

Did she go on to get married and have a family? Did she become a professional woman and make a difference in society over the past, almost, 50 years?

Or did she go off with some bikers into the Arizona desert and OD on heroin. Did she enlist in the Army and die in Viet Nam. Did she end up in prison somewhere on a weapons or murder charge.

I'll probably never know. I'd like to think the former. I'd like to think that she escaped the era without too many bruises and is happy somewhere, possibly a grandmother, in retirement or anticipating it and full of good memories of her time way back then.

Maybe I'm even one of them. She's certainly one of mine.

Her name was Linda. They called her "Mouse."

Hi Mouse. I hope you're well.

I hope you've had a nice life.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Let Them Eat Cheese...

I live part of the time in Massachusetts. I have for over 25 years now. Massachusetts is a very nice place to live and work and raise a family.

It's fighting a losing battle.

Remember the bumper sticker back in 1972? "Don't Blame Me...I'm From Massachusetts"

Ah, the memories.

Massachusetts used to be a liberal state...Kennedy and Harvard and the Boston Common and all.

But "The Times They are A-Changin' " (where the hell is Bob these days anyway when we really need him...where have all the flowers gone...?)

I guess it's just that we're all so pissed off at the way everything is turning out. We thought we had it made...those of us who grew up in the fifties and sixties and actually bought all of the love and peace crap.

It all turned out, it seems, to have been a boatload of drug induced fantasy spin. We don't really love one another and peace seems to be as much of an illusion as the notion that our votes really count. Tell that to K Street...

So here we are in the midst of an off year, special election to fill the vacant seat of the late Ted Kennedy.

The uninspiring Martha against the inspiring Scott. He's got the fire...she's got the...what is it exactly that she's got?...can you tell me...oh, yeah...she's the Democrat...which counted for something in '08...but now means almost nothing...

Sarah Palin is on Fox...Harry Reid needs elocution lessons...Tiger Woods is a pariah (was O.J. now it's Tiger...guess we just need a black guy to pillory)...Lloyd Blankfein is running for Pope...and the Jets might win the Super Bowl. Who woulda thunk it.

Anyway...Massachusetts elects a new Senator tomorrow. Will it be Coakley or Brown? Will there be health care or not? Will Obama have his fillibuster proof majority? Will Superman find Lois and Jimmy...and save the day! Sorry, that was Mighty Mouse. "Here I come to save the day...!"

Boy, don't ya wish it were just that easy?

Call in the mouse. Yeah...we're saved!

Cheese for everyone...make mine Camembert..nice and soft with a real French Baguette...the crunchy crusty kind...and a lovely Muscat...


"Let them eat cheese..."

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Haitian Formula

What a tragedy.

I'm not talking here about the earthquake, devastating as it was and is. The reports are of widespread destruction and a horrible loss of life.

I'm talking about our collective inability to get along. We're fine in a crisis. At The World Trade Center on 9/11 everyone worked side by side and forgot about age old rivalries and feuds.

We all responded with cash and human capital when The Tsunami hit a few years ago.

People helped one another during Hurricane Katrina, letting go of ancient racial biases for the moment...maybe except that one old white guy in The Garden District who said, on national television, that he would shoot anyone trying to get into his house.

We can't seem to act lovingly toward one another unless we're in a crisis. We hate each other on Monday and then...bang...Tuesday there's an earthquake and suddenly we're all brethren and rushing to help.

But we do that no matter what the situation. We drive tanks and use fossil fuel as if it will last forever...until we have a crisis...gas is $5.00 a gallon. Then we junk our Hummers and start riding bicycles. Al Gore is a pest when oil is $50 a barrell and he's a saint when it's $100.

We smoke until we get lung cancer and then we swear to stop.

We're all Burt Reynolds at the end of "The End" when he's bargaining with God to save his drowning life...just until he can touch the bottom...then he's not so sure about what he's willing to do.

We are so myopic and selfish. Where are our hearts (and heads) when we have no crises?

Question: What the hell is the difference between a child in Port-au-Prince on Monday and a child in Port-au-Prince on Wednesday?

Answer: Nothing

We see the picture Tequila Minksy shot in The New York Times and run to help. Hypocrites.

So...I repeat...what a tragedy...that we all can't get along all of the time. That we can't see everyone as a neighbor on this too small planet. That we can't help one another all of the time...not just when the roof is, literally, falling in.

"What goes around comes around..."

We should be ashamed.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Not Quite Yet!

I have a wonderful friend...a very successful man in the corporate world of high end consulting...I'll call him Bill...he knows who he is.

In reviewing my blog (he is also a wonderful writer) he counselled me to write more from my own experiences...he seems to think I've had an interesting life...which, by some measure, I have, in part because of his encouraging belief in me and professional generosity.

He referred to himself as an "old kvetch" and thought I'd have a better blog if I had less complaining and more personal stuff.
He said there are too many "kvetchers" out there.

He's usually right and probably is in this case but, and I'm sorry Bill...I just need to have a little bitch fest here...just a little I hope you'll forgive me...

I went to the bank shall remain nameless but it is one of those that almost failed recently having a long history of service and value since its' founding in San Francisco years ago by an Italian merchant.

Anyway...I deposited a rather large check from an investor in a TV project I'm working on. I very much need the money to pay for the marketing plan I'm developing to sell the I can begin to make money and pay dividends to my other well as the new one.

I cannot, for the life of me, understand how it is that we can push a button and Google Earth can show us what someone is eating on The Champs Elysees or find out who had the most stolen bases in 1941 or what Kirk Douglas' real name is or any number of other inane or critically important things we "have to know"...right now...but my bank has to "hold" my money for a few days or weeks, waiting for the check to "clear."

What the.....!? would be disingenuous of me to really assert that I don't understand. I's all about the money...unfortunately not mine...theirs!

Well, actually, it is mine but they are using it to make more for themselves so they can give it to their investors...but more importantly to themselves in the form of multi-million dollar bonuses. Why don't I get interest for those days...? Ever think about that!?

I get it. They say, with a straight face, that the system needs a period of time to process the check.


The system that the bank celebrates when it is trying to get me to use the ATM or online banking is the same system that operates at 186,000 miles per second!

In the immortal words of Cuba Gooding, Jr.s character in "Jerry Maguire"...


"We need to put a hold on the money while this check clears."

Hold this...!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Ah, My Sweet...!

Shut up!!

Just stop talking and listen for one minute...would ya pleeeeeeeeez!

What is your favorite candy?

Hands down, mine is (are?) M & Ms.

I know they're not elegant or chic or cosmopolitan. They're not Swiss...(Roger Federer this...! I'm a Nadal man myself))...ooooooooh!

They're just wonderful (the M & off track there...sorry.)

After much deliberation (not really...just sounds good...) and much unscientific testing I have concluded that M & Ms are the best overall candy on the planet and I'll tell you why.

Their slogan is that "they will melt in your mouth, not in your hand." Now, while that is partially true, it is not the reason of reasons. The ultimate reason and raison d'etre for the the little pearls is this: they taste great!

No, really, if you're honest, you'll admit to trying all of the others...Baby Ruth, Heath Bar, Skor, Milky Way, Three Musketeers, Snickers, Mounds, Almond Joy and all of the countless other (Kit Kat, Reese's Cup...etc.) commercially available candy bars that tempt you at the drugstore (hmmm...) and/or supermarket.

But M & Ms...c'mon...tell the's gotta be M & Ms.

First, you get a lot of them. How many...whatever...I don't know...but a lot more than just one.
Each one is its' own candy bar. Then there are the colors. You're lying through your chocolate stained teeth, my friend, if you say, with a straight face, that you have never sorted them by color (always too many red ones for me...but that's just me.) Yeah, right...!

Then there's the flavor. Just plain old milk nuts, no dark chocolate let down or carob nothin' but chocolate (ok, the peanut ones are terrific...I know...I know.) And the texture. That little crunch (the only thing arguably better than an orgasm or maybe a walk on the beach with your other sweet is a bowl...has to be a bowl because of the sound they make hitting the glass...of frozen or at least cold M & Ms....not one other thing...ok, maybe your kid's face...maybe that.) when you first bite 'em....mmmmmmmmmmm.

And the melting in your mouth thing. There's a bit of truth to that line...especially when, for some reason you do have to hold them...that moment between bag and mouth when the phone rings and the person calling might not understand the lack of intelligible speech coming from you because your mouth is full of candy and your mind is elsewhere. They do stay reasonably hard in your hand...not gooey and subsequently sticky...letting the moment go by without the need to wash your hands immediately so as to not get the goo on anything you may touch in the near future. That's a good deal and positive benefit.

Now I grant you that a Parisian chocolatier or a box of Whitman's (not Brach's...sorry...Whitman's...and not a stupid sampler thank you...a full box to wade through...all at once...with no one else to have to share it with...get your own box!) can definitely compete...or even Andes Candies or...oh my God...I forgot the toffee with the chocolate and the crunched up nuts all over it that you buy by the ounce (pound...who am I kidding) at a chocolate shop in irregular little pieces, like the break up pieces of the pack ice at the south pole...the original Skor...but a gazillion times better... I forgot about those whatever they're called...

Stop...I retract what I said about M & Ms being my favorite. They' wait a minute...there must be a way to salvage this...ok...I've got it...they are my favorite candy that are multi-colored and small and a bunch in one group...but that excludes the little dots of multi colored joy stuck on a strip of paper that you got when you were a kid and got a little bit of paper in your mouth if you tore the dot off the strip too fast so you could get the dot into your system more a junkie and his hit...

Uh, oh...

Gotta go now.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Bring Your Pet Peeve to Work Day...

Close your eyes...imagine, for a minute, you're following a car at a reasonable speed...not to fast...not too slow.

Then, all of a sudden, the car decides to make a turn...let's the right.

Out of the blue. No warning...nothing. No blinker. Nada.

Just a turn...

...and it is that sort of thing that drives (no pun intended) me nuts!

I don't care about whether or not the seat is up or down or someone left an empty juice bottle in the refrigerator...


I remember once, when I was living in San Francisco, and I was riding a motorcycle (a Kawasaki 1000 with a full fairing...burgundy color...what a bike to cruise the PCH and to go up to Sonoma and the Russian River...or down to Santa Cruz...ooooooh!) and I was following some guy up Army Street (now Cesar Chavez Way for those who are lost and looking for Army Street...) and we were crossing Dolores and he changed lanes and nearly made me dump the bike.

Man, was I pissed...not road rage pissed but pissed just the same.

I pulled up next to him and flagged him over. I was wearing a big wrap-around white helmet so he must have thought I was a cop so he stopped right away.

I got off the bike and came up to his window and asked him if his directional signal was broken.
He looked at me with a perplexed look and then got it. I told him that he had almost hit me and asked if he could please use his turn signal when...turning. He sheepishly agreed to do so as though I held some power other than the moral power I was exerting. I guess I shamed him into being apologetic.

I hope he used his blinkers from then on and that he didn't actually kill someone, on a bike or not, because of his negligence.

I don't mean to preach, but it just annoys the crap out of me when people don't signal their intentions. It doesn't take much, a simple flick of the wrist. They teach it to you in driving school.

Are people that lazy? Maybe the car companies could make the car do it automatically...hooked up wirelessly to your brain so when, and if, you think about turning, the signal goes on automatically.

But that might be complicated because the car might to other things when you think of jumping up and down if you see a pretty girl or going really fast when you think about stopping for a piece of chocolate.

It could get out of hand.

But for now, maybe folks could just use their directional signals when intending a either direction.

I forget the comic who said it...maybe Jack Benny or Myron Cohen...when recalling following a lazy driver:

"For miles you've signalled a turn to the right. Please turn off the road, or your light."

That would only be funny if they were following someone who had forgotten to turn off their signal...not forgotten to USE THE DAMN THING IN THE FIRST PLACE!

"Just a warning this time time I'm writin' you up...!"

Have a nice day.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Like Father Like Son...?

Unbelieveable...but don't let me influence you...

By Elisabeth Bumiller (New York Times)
Published: September 24, 2007

WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 — On June 23, 1967, Senator Thomas J. Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut, was censured by the United States Senate for diverting $116,000 in campaign funds for his personal use. The vote was 92 to 5.

“I think a grave mistake has been made, and I am the one who must bear the scar of that mistake for the rest of my life,” Thomas Dodd told a hushed chamber. His voice broke, and he was led off the floor in tears. Four years later, he died a broken man.

Can you believe it? Now comes the news that his son, Chris Dodd, the Senator from Connecticut, is retiring.

Could it be that he can't shed the taint of alleged corruption because of his relationship to Angelo Mozilo of Countrywide...? Could that be why he "retired?"

Or did he think he'd lose a reelection bid... as an incumbent mind you... in the current atmosphere of financial shenanigans and public disgust?

No...couldn't be that now could it?


I am continually astounded but really not at all surprised that our elected officials consistently fail to disappoint in the scumbag scandal department.

Some guy steals a loaf of bread or knocks off a 7 Eleven and goes to prison for ever.

A gray haired pseudo-intellectual politician steals our trust and our dollars and goes to The Bahamas on vacation drawing a pension, health care and dividends from numbered Swiss accounts.

It ain't fair! Our system is so out of alignment that Barry or Sarah or Rush or Mitt will never be able to fix it. We're done...over...kaput...finito...

I just hope our kids get through the next 90 years before the whole thing evaporates into the ether.

We are devoid of character and integrity. Not Everyman. He's got character and integrity coming out of his ears...or almost Everyman that is (...remember Joe the Plumber?)

It's the so-called ruling class...the "inside the Beltway" elites who we keep sending to Washington continuing to believe that the Constitution means something and that this experiment in democracy will actually win out over the long haul.

What seems to be happening however is that the haul is getting longer and mostly going into the velvet pockets of people who couldn't give a good God damn about what happens to the rest of us.

It makes one sick.

Hey Chris...thanks...for nothing... Hope the fish are bitin'...but I don't want to carp.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Gilda Age...

She would rant and rave, wondering why we were making such a fuss over a seemingly innocuous phrase from Jamaica, "Ya Mon." When Jane Curtin corrected her, explaining that it was "Yemen", the great and wonderful Gilda Radner, if she were alive today, would say, "Never Mind!"

So I'll say it for her...

Never mind...

What are we doing? Is this a game of Whack-a-Mole? Are we completely without a clue...without direction?

A group of terrorists fly planes into buildings so we step up security on airplanes.

A guy tries to ignite his shoe so we all have to board the airplane in bare feet.

Another guy tries to bring liquid explosives on a jet so we can't bring on a water bottle.

And yet another guy tries to ignite his will now have to fly half naked until someone tries to ignite his which point we'll all be flying totally naked. Then it will truly be "The Friendly Skies..."

What's the plan Stan? What's the story Maury? What are you gonna do Lou?

Wait...I have an idea...not one of a certain nature (I am afraid...see my previous blog about "fear"... to use a particular word here because I don't want this blog to be flagged as propaganda)...and I think it's a pretty good one...and after rescreening Preminger's "Advise and Consent" it seems all too appropriate...

Let's try to figure out...all of you Beltway intellects...why the other side wants to kill us.

If you're sick you go to the doctor, tell him your symptoms and he prescribes a course of action to bring you back to health.

If your car doesn't work you take it to your mechanic, tell him its' symptoms and he prescribes a course of action to bring it back to mechanical health.

When your foreign policy, whether military, economic or social, is making you sick...making your "body" vulnerable to disease...wouldn't it seem logical that you would find out the reason(s) and take steps to correct the problem.

When you are dying from a cigarette related disease it isn't particularly constructive to say that it was the cigarettes alone that are killing you. Sure, they played a part....but what about you and your personal responsibility. Is it possible that you played a part too? Did you make any choices during your smoking career that brought you to an untimely and agonizing end?

We've been smoking for years...and..what a's the cancer.

We're spending all of our time looking at the cigarettes.

We're not looking at what and who put them in our mouths.

Got a light...?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

It's All About Me...

This is an experiment in unbridled self-promotion.

Bear with me. I want to see if I get any response using brand names in my blog...

So here goes...

I love:

Coca Cola
Kraft Foods
General Mills
Ford Motor Co.
Jonhson and Johnson
Procter and Gamble
Tommy Hilfiger

Ok...we'll see if I get any response...

Now for my blog...which would have been entitled as follows:

"Blogs of Fear"...

...a play on words for Blogosphere...get it?

We are "Afraid" very "Afraid" or as Sheen says to Jimmy (Neutron) "Ultra Lord is a little bit afraid of Chickens...!"

We're frightened of everything...burst bubbles, burst condoms, burst ozone layer, burst reynolds (get that one too?...well the new Burst, not the old hunky one from "Longest Yard" days...and no one should infer that I am gay by referring to him as hunky...he was then...he ain't now...and I know hunky when I see it....regardless...I do know and love gay people I therefore gay by association...? Get a life...)

Anyway...we're scared all of the time...of losing our homes or our jobs or our spouses (spice...? mouse/mice...a little help here...)...of losing our 401k or of our team losing whatever game...

We're just running scared in our lives. But why...? What do we really have to be afraid of?

We live in a wonderful age of advancement on every front. Little by little we are climbing up and out of the ooze from whence we what of it's taking thousands of years...we have the time...have you ever contemplated distance in the universe?

A light year...Holy Cow! (the wonderful, late, Phil Rizzuto) If light travels at 186,000 miles per second (per second...!) then a light year is the distance from earth that light will travel in one year...60 times 60 times 24 times 365...

Wow! the larger scope of things the time that has elapsed since the beginning of recorded history is a mere speck...we have advanced alot since the beginning...

Am I rambling? Sorry...what I'm trying to say is that we are making progress toward enlightenment...ok, so I got off the track a little with the business about light years...but it's always fascinated me.

We used to live in caves (ok...some of us still do...can you say Afghanistan...?) but most of us don't.

We used to think the earth was flat but now we don't...except for Tom Friedman (one of my absolute heroes...really...) who thinks the earth is Flat and argues the point persuasively and eloquently in his book, "The World is Flat."

We used to think the Yankees were the only team to ever win the World Series and then a funny thing happened at Fenway Park...and I don't mean hockey...

There are a lot of things that used to be but are not now so...and sooner or later we will overcome all of our prejudices and superstitions and live a life in harmony within the universe and with all of its' matter how many light years it takes for us to get there (do you like how I knitted the two themes together...did that work for you?...Everyone's a critic...)

So don't be afraid...we're almost there...maybe in the year 2525...oh, I'll never get that song out of my of my least favorites from the era...

My favorite from the 60's is "Good Lovin'" by The Rascals...that syncopated drum part by the great Dino Danelli..."

"I was feelin' so bad...
I asked my family doctor just what I had.
I said Doctor...
Mr. M.D.
Now can you tell me what's ailin' me?

He said yeah...all you really need is good lovin'"

Ain't that the this or any millenium...!