Tuesday, September 30, 2008

For Cryin' Out Loud, Just PASS The Bill!

I'm sure that somewhere out there (most likely in Florida) a female teacher is having sex with her students, someone who is not wearing any pants is robbing some convenience store and a large snake or stray bull, steer and/or cow has escaped from it's home and is roaming about a major freeway. I'm sure these things are happening and are extremely mockable. However, there will be plenty of pantsless robbers for me to write about in the future after the US economy completely collapses and the entire country gets to experience the 2008 version of The Great Depression, live and in person. I hope you like dust.

If you've been living under a rock for the past few days and have no idea what I'm talking about, that's actually pretty good, as shortly there is going to be a huge run on rocks to live under and you already have yours staked out and will avoid the stampede. That's good. But if that scenario doesn't take place, then you're just another uninformed, under a rock, rock-dweller. While I can't do much about the rock-dwelling (hey, who am I to judge?), I can do a bit about the uninformed part. That is, to help the 'neath=rockers become more informed. But only, only if they read. They have to pull their share. Trying to get something for nothing is how this whole mess came to be in the first place.

See, you know all of that money that we've been putting into banks for the past, oh, I'd say....always? Yeah, that money. Well, see, the problem is that the banks? Yeah, they don't have it anymore. No, they gave it away. I know, I know, you think I made a mistake and I should have wrote that they "loaned it all out" and not "they gave it away". Nope, no mistake there. They gave it away. They might have thought they were loaning it out, but when you "loan" money to someone that you know can't pay you back? That's called "giving". Big difference. But that's what happened. The banks thought that it would be a really good idea to loan people money to buy a house that they couldn't afford. Yes, I know that sounds stupid. But let me finish. Maybe it won't sound so stupid then.

So they loaned all of this money to people who couldn't afford the houses that they were buying because the banks just figured that, since real estate prices kept going up, they would assume and act as if the real estate prices would always go up and that way they could lend money to people who could just sell the house when they couldn't pay for it anymore and the banks would get their money back that way. Now does it sound stupid? It does? Well, good. That's because it still is.

Naturally, what ended up happening is that after a while, say four or five years, the banks were still waiting to get their money back. What they apparently didn't anticipate was that the real estate market would eventually be glutted with overpriced houses that people couldn't afford to buy and that people couldn't afford to live in. And since the people that bought the houses that they couldn't afford weren't exactly financial wizards, they didn't put them up for sale themselves and instead let them go into foreclosure. The foreclosure process takes quite a while to complete to the point of having the home sold. So as a ton of houses are going into foreclosure, overpriced houses aren't selling (hey, I cannot buy a home AND a tank of gas at the same time! Who can?), people aren't buying because prices are too high and there aren't any homes left anyways, and the banks don't get their money back. Sheer genius, I tell you. On the part of everyone who was involved at any level with this. Sheer genius.

So now the banks don't have any money. And it's not like it's just one bank. No, moronic banks all across the country were behaving like this. (Why? How about if I said that those who sell the houses and those who broker the loans get a big, fat commission for each one that they do? Then would it become a bit clearer? I thought so.) Now banks can't lend money to each other or to small businesses or to people who want to buy a house that they can afford, or anything like that requires loaning money. They don't HAVE anymore.

Well, no sense in staying in business if you don't have any product to sell. It would be like if KFC ran out of chicken. Unless you wanted to change the name to KFB (Kentucky Fried Batter), you'd be shuttering the doors to the deep frying coop shortly. And banks did the same thing. Next thing you know, banks are going under, people are panicking, stocks are plunging and the whole thing is just cats and dogs, living together, mass hysteria. (My thoughts? I'm expecting a huge run on shovels, so that people can dig holes in the backyard to bury their money in, and I'm expecting a huge run on mattresses so that people can hide their money under them. So invest heavily in mattresses and shovels and you'll be fine. And after you do, come see me and check to see if I still have the Brooklyn Bridge for sale, because I could probably cut you a pretty good deal. You know, since we're friends and all.)

And here's where I start to get a little testy about the whole thing. What has to happen now is that the financial institutions (known as the banks run by greedy dimwits) need to get some money. So the Federal Government wants to, essentially, loan (or give. Some say give.) the banks the money. They want to buy up all of their mortgages that are outstanding (and by outstanding I mean that no one is paying for them. I do not mean all of the "great mortgages" when I say that.) and that way the banks will get their money back and it will be business as semi-usual. What? Oh, how much? Well, for the eight of you who actually read this, you'll remember that the other day I explained that they need $700 billion dollars. Not necessarily because they really need that much, but because they needed a really large number and that's the one they chose.

Sure, it's a buttload of money. It's several buttloads of money. (Because you could never fit all of that money in one butt.) But the US is a pretty rich country and with "rich" comes buttloads of money. But here's the thing: If the banks don't have any more money, they can't lend money. That means that people, like small businesses, etc., can't get money. If they can't get money, they close up shop. If they're closed, their employees get laid off. With people being laid off, the free spending of money as if someone had opened up a freaking spigot stops. When money spending stops, then the cycle continues to repeat itself until we're all wearing barrels or sandwich boards. (Actually, the only people who will be wearing the sandwich boards will be morons because they thought that they could eat it when the next food shortage came along.) For reals.

So all of the lawmakers congregate in Washington, DC to try and hammer out a deal. Originally, it was a 2 page document that gave the $700 billion to Henry Paulson to do with what he would without any oversight from anyone. Of course, the anal retentive, control freaks in Washington flipped out when they heard that and thus began two days of negotiation which turned the 2 page document into a 132 page document that was to be up for a vote on Monday. And remember, the Secretary of the Treasury, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, and many, many economists are all saying that if something isn't done soon, everything will fall apart. AND also remember that, just to show that they weren't kidding, Washington Mutual, which has been around since 1889 (which is almost as long as John McCain has been around) folded over the weekend while everyone was working on their "deal". Gone. The end.

So a company that had been around for 119 years couldn't wait TWO days until this Financial Assistance package was completed and had to go out of business and sell off it's $31 billion dollars in assets to JP Morgan for $1.8 billion. And that's without a coupon! Naturally, that would persuade some of the lawmakers to just pass the thing, whatever it is, just pass it so that our economy, which is now starting to resemble a Jenga tower towards the end of the game, doesn't collapse into shambles, right? Oh, please.

They thought it was done. They thought it would pass. It didn't. And what do you think happened? Exactly. The Dow plunged 777 points, the largest one day drop EVER. Nice job, Reps. Nice job. What in the hell is wrong with you people? (Mark my words, if they do not agree on this thing on Tuesday, the drop will be twice as much.) And here's where I go ballistic.

Do you know how many freaking committees there are to regulate and supervise the very departments and sectors of the financial systems of this country? Let me list a few. We have:

  • The governors of the Federal Reserve System
  • The Board of Directors of the FDIC
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission
  • The Federal Advisory Committee
  • The Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs
  • The Committee on the Budget
  • The Committee on the Finance of the Senate
  • The Committee on Financial Services
  • The Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives
  • The Federal Housing Finance Agency

The various members of these various committees and boards (and I've just listed TEN of them. There ARE more.) are made up of members of the House of Representatives! These committees and boards are supposed to oversee the financial system of the country and regulate it so that disaster doesn't strike. Well what in the hell have they been doing the past four or five years?! And NOW they're all concerned that something might be done without their oversight? Are you kidding me? You're already supposed to be overseeing things? What have you people been doing??!

Clearly, people weren't doing their jobs. That's nothing new when it comes to elected officials. But what burns my toast is that these people have the freaking nerve to, once again, act all concerned about the situation and what they can do to save it when they were the ones that created the mess in the first place by doing NOTHING! Don't show up NOW and tell me that YOU want oversight. That's what you should have been doing, you morons, you! AND on top of that, those who know their economic stuff are telling you that it is going to be financially disastrous if the now 100+ bill doesn't pass and something isn't done. So what do you do? Do you pass the bill? Hell, no! Instead, you make it so the bill does NOT pass and the stock market drops like the rocks that must in your heads.

So when all of the fraud was going on in the real estate and mortgage lending game, you didn't want to listen then. When you're on these committees to oversee the industry and you learn about these things, you didn't want to listen then. And then after you're told that not giving Federal help to these banks will significantly damage the economy, you still don't listen and don't pass the bill because NOW, suddenly, YOU want to start doing your job? Screw you and don't let the door hit you in your cowardly ass on the way out. (The cowardly ass, by the way, was originally slated to be one of the three characters that accompanied Dorothy on her magical journey to Oz and then was unceremoniously replaced by that lion fellow.) Once again, you showed that you only care about yourselves, being as how a whole lot of you are up for re-election in November and you saw a "yes" vote as being not as politically productive for you as a "no" vote.


Come November on Election Day, I've decided to simply vote for whoever the challenger is to any seat in the House of Representatives that is up for grabs. I don't care if it's a goat rapist running against the incumbent, I'm voting for the goat rapist! And I encourage everyone else to vote against the incumbents as well. Don't worry about what your party affiliation is; just always vote for the goat rapist! I want all of them booted out and I want to just start over. What a bunch of jackasses! If you people wanted to do your damn job so badly, why didn't you?! What was stopping you?!! Oh, that's right, because you're jackasses! Once again, I remind those folks that their JOB was to make sure that NONE of this could HAPPEN! And they're worried about votes? Grand.




Stay tuned and see if either a) the House passes the bill tomorrow, or b) if I have a coronary if they don't. Either one, a fair to partly cloudy possibility. (In the interim, I'd like to apologize to all of the goats out there that I may have offended or frightened by participating in and encouraging the electing of public officials prone to fornicating with members of your species. Sorry 'bout that.)

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Happy Birthday

If my Dad were around, today would have been his birthday. Come to think of it, around or not, it's still his birthday. Regardless, even though I am fully aware that he (likely) does not have a computer or the Internet, I'm still doing it this way.

Happy birthday, Dad.

We'll be having your usual birthday dinner tonight. No sense in missing out on that. I sure do wish you could be here for it. As far as everything else goes, since we chat all the time, I won't go into a ton of detail because you already know everything.

I miss you and I wish you could come back.

Happy birthday.







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Monday, September 29, 2008

Will The Real Sarah Palin Please Stand Up?

Once again, Tina Fey took on the role of Sarah Palin for a Saturday Night Live sketch. And once again, it was awesome. Tina Fey has Sarah Palin's moves and mannerisms and speech patterns down perfectly. (Really, the only one better than Tina Fey last night was Amy Poehler as Katie Couric. She had the total Katie look and must have worked for quite some time to get the "doe in the headlights" disbelieving, eye blinking down pat. I was convinced that she really thought that Tina Fey was Sarah Palin and that Sarah Palin was crazy. Eh, actually, after hearing the real Katie Couric interview the real Sarah Palin last week, I think we all feel that way, so it probably wasn't that hard to master.)

Fey has said that she wants to "be done playing this woman by Nov. 5". Since the election is on the 4th, I'll let you figure out which candidate Tina Fey supports. (I'll give you a hint. He's not a Muslim.) But if she does decide to stop playing Sarah Palin, there are others who could take over.

Meet Maine TV anchor Cindy Michael. (She's the one on the right.)


Now she, like Tina Fey, bears a striking resemblance to Sarah Palin. So much so that, according to Boston.com, ever since Grandpa John McCain announced that Palin would be his VP candidate, Michael "has been getting 'hate mail and nasty phone calls' from viewers recently who accuse her of copying the look of Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin." Huh? Did she look like that before anyone other than the residents of Wasilla, the crystal meth capital of Alaska, knew who Sarah Palin was? I'm guessing that she did. Had the people who were taking time out of their busy schedule (from yelling at kids to get off of their lawn) and taking time to write hate mail about Michael's appearance ever seen her newscast before? You'd think that they'd remember something like that. It makes me think that Maine should really be bigger, because obviously people are running out of things to do in such a confined area.

But what I found equally odd was Michael's response to these crazed defenders of Far West Fashion. "It's really just a huge coincidence," Michaels says about the similarity. Well of course it's a coincidence. What in the hell else would it be? A conspiracy? What is that supposed to mean?!

And if it was a conspiracy, it would be a far reaching one, as there are a bunch of other people who resemble Sarah Palin. This must be a popular look these days. Kind of like when half of the country cut their hair to look like Rachel when 'Friends' was on TV. The only difference is that when everyone was sporting the Rachel-do, I noticed. I have yet to notice a massive crowd of Sarah Palin look-alikes. Not even one. I keep thinking that I will (especially at the grocery store because she has sort of a grocery checker look. She'd be the speedy one working the 15 Items or Less line.), but I never do. I must be the only one though, because look at all of the people who are out there who look like Sarah Palin (or who Sarah Palin looks like. Chicken. Egg. You decide.).

One person whom I've never heard of who looks like Sarah Palin is Lisa Loeb, the clandestine folk singer. But there are others who you've actually heard of who would be better at the job than this chick.

There's always Julia Louis-Dreyfus from the Seinfeld days of yore and the "New Adventures of Old Christine" days of now. Julia's been sporting the sexy beehive for years and still looks excellent while doing so. Julia used to be a member of the Saturday Night Live cast as well, so she'd be a fabulous choice to take over in case Tina Fey jumps ship. And she's hot. (That's very important! You'll understand how and why later. When you're older.)

Then there's Gina Gershon of the very steamy and very lesbian-y film Bound. She did a video for the folks over there at Funny or Die where you played Sarah Palin. So she already has experience. AND she's good at kissing other women. (Oh, you know you want that to play a part in this Presidential race some how. Admit it. I have.) She would be another excellent choice.


Some think that Diane Keaton in the film "On Thin Ice" resembles Palin. Others think that those who think Diane Keaton in "On Thin Ice" resembles Palin, are on crack. She doesn't. She does look a step or two away from the part of 'naughty librarian'. But Sarah Palin? Only if the other four I've mentioned get hit by a bus.

But if all five of them were hit by a bus, the last resort would be for Saturday Night Live to just spend five or six minutes showing this cornfield in Ohio where a farmer had a likeness of Sarah Palin carved/stomped into the crops. It's a little scary, but it really does look like her. That has to be a marketable talent for the guy who does that sort of thing. I don't imagine he's going to get rich off of it though. There are definitely a very limited number of cornfields available for one to mash in the likenesses of political candidates. I mean, it's nice and all, but we do need corn.

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She's Witch-Free!

You know, sometimes people will hear something about someone, (let's just say, for hypothetical purposes, like a political candidate for Vice President who happens to be the hottest thing fifty miles east of Russia) that is a little bit strange or different and they will neglect to see the positive in it. Instead, all they can focus on is the strangeness and the weirdness. The positive aspects, in some ways, could be the most valuable and yet they're being completely overshadowed by the bizarre. Here's what I mean...

From the folks over there at the Associated Press, we learn that "A video on her (Sarah Palin's) hometown church Web site shows her being blessed three years ago by a Kenyan pastor who prayed for her protection from "witchcraft" as she prepared to seek higher office." She was subsequently deemed to be free from witchcraft and free from witches. I see. Wait. What?

Now, the video was unearthed by the National Enquirer. (I'm not saying that diminishes any sort of validity that the video may have. After all, it was the National Enquirer who kept saying for months that the weasel of all slimy weasels, John Edwards, had cheated on his cancer-stricken wife, Elizabeth with some floozie videographer. And the National Enquirer was right. So they do have some credibility. Not a lot, but a little bit more than before the John Edwards thing.) The video "shows Palin standing before Bishop Thomas Muthee in the pulpit of the Wasilla Assembly of God church, holding her hands open as he asked Jesus Christ to keep her safe from "every form of witchcraft." " The Associated Press also reports that "Palin does not say anything on the video and keeps her head bowed throughout the blessing." Huh. OK, then.

Granted, I find this odd. And by odd I mean really freaking strange. What the hell is she doing with some voodoo doctor who might as well be dancing around in a grass skirt, speaking in tongue and waving a chicken bone in the air?! That can't be good for anyone (let alone the chicken).

So, as you can imagine, a lot of people are freaking out about this. I was freaking out about this at first also. But then, that's when I thought that this really isn't that bad. In fact, it's kind of good. She's free from witches. Well, that's GREAT! I don't want a Vice President that is NOT free from witches! I can't have someone in the White House all witch-y and stuff. She's witch-free! And that's how I like most things in my life to be - without witches! See? It's not so bad!

Ah, the media. Always looking for the negative. But here I managed to take the most whack-a-doodle of whack-a-doodle and, by some miracle, find that silky, silvery lining that makes everything just fine. No witches is good in my book! Spread the word!

Do we know if Joe Biden is free of witches? I don't think we do! He may not be! And do you really want to take that chance? That's the question only you can answer. (I certainly can't answer it because after that load of crap I just spewed out, I'm not going to be taken seriously for at least another hour and a half.)

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

How Could He NOT Be Gay?

Back to the breaking news from the "Water is Wet and the Sun is Hot" file, Clay Aiken has announced that he is, in fact, gay. Yes, shocking. Which is to say, not shocking in the least. Not even close. Didn't even blink when I heard it (and neither did you!). But now that his fans (known as, don't gag, The Claymates) have known for a few days and now that non-Claymates (aka normal people) have known for a few days, more details about this non-news event have surfaced. And I'm here to play them up just as much as the rest of 'em.


First things first, People Magazine. They're the guys who got the scoop and had the photo of Daddy Clay and his child, Parker Foster Not-Gay-Yet Aiken, on the cover which read "Yes, I'm Gay". They apparently forgot to include the rest of that title which should have read "Yes, We Know". Naturally, no one would go on the cover of People Magazine these days without a fistful of cash being thrust at them and Clay was no exception. Though compared to some of the previous payouts for cover stories, I don't know if I'd call it a fistful that he got. It's more like a tip if you compare it to the Spawn of Brangelina photos which raked in millions. Clay received $500,000 for all of his gayness. And I, personally, am not thinking that $500,000 is chump change at all. Quite the contrary. If someone wants to give me half a million bucks for me to tell people something they already know (a la "The sun is hot", "Water is wet"), I'm not going to turn down that gig.

Then we have the awesome reaction of the most awesome of all of the American Idol judges, Simon Cowell. (Because you know that when anything happens to anyone that was ever on Idol, even if it was for 5 minutes, the media goes scurrying off to find Paula, Randy or Simon and see what they think about it. I guess it's because they're the "judges". Even though they don't "judge" much on the show, they're apparently qualified to "judge" the ex-contestants in real life, if you're asking the media as they scurry by you.) Simon's reaction was merely the verbal equivalent of what everyone else was thinking when he said, "Wow. That's a shock. It's like being told Santa Claus isn't real. Unbelievable." That is why I love that man. He tells it like it is. (If only more people would listen to him before they make asses out of themselves and try out for Idol anyway.) He went on with, "Good for him. If he said it, it's the right thing for him. Good for him. I don't think anyone cares. Let's face it: It's 2008. You know. Who cares?" Exactly. Who cares?

I'll tell you who cares.The Claymates care. Wait. The who? The what? The Claymates? The Claymates are fans of Clay Aiken (no word on whether or not they're going to be called The Gaymates from now on, but I do kind of doubt it.) I use the term "fan" loosely, as it would appear that a lot of them are just about a restraining order or two away from being permanently labeled "stalker".Over at something called aikenforums.com there is a huge discussion amongst several individuals who, I would assume, think of themselves as Claymates (or stalkers). Why they want to think of themselves as Claymates is beyond me.

Seriously, reading this forum gave me a glimpse into the souls of people who a) really like Clay Aiken, b) have made several thousand posts in online forums, c) have made several thousand posts in THE online forums about Clay Aiken, d) take celebrity idol worship to a different level. Some of those people would seem more normal to me if they simply stalked Clay by camping out behind a potted palm in the foyer area of his home and talked into their shoe on occasion. It was disturbing and not, repeat, NOT normal. (Of course examples will follow! You don't think I'd just tease like that, do you?)

For starters, before the "news" was officially official, there was actually speculation in that particular forum as to whether or not the picture on the front of People Magazine was a Photoshop or not. That's right. They were so wanting the "rumor" to be not true that they unofficially came to a consensus on the "Photoshop conspiracy theory" (the PCT) to try to calm themselves down before they "knew for sure". The PCT starts with a post by a one playbiller (who has posted 1,411 times) who writes the following:


  • "Disclaimer - not a homophobe or fearful, but it seems like this as a nasty prank against the fandom...Reeks of photoshop to me. We can probably even find the picture of Clay's head from a recent fan photo if we look hard enough....Believe if you want, I just know that nothing is true unless it is printed in the fan club. I am really shocked that this source would be considered reliable on anything when almost everything he prints has been printed some where else before, unless he makes it up. I just figure he spent a little money on a good photoshopper. No, I am not delusional, this just does not add to me."

Wow. It doesn't add up to this person that Clay Aiken has said he was gay, but it does add up to this person that there would be a big ol' Photoshop job of Clay on the cover of People? I'm confused as to what part of the cover you would have to Photoshop for a cover that says "Yes, I'm gay" and has him sitting there. It's not like they had a picture of Clay going all Brokeback or anything. Now THAT would be a Photoshop! (And one hell of a good seller as well, I would imagine.) But, I don't consider adding text to a picture "Photoshopping" it, as I'm pretty sure that most people can guess that the text wasn't actually hovering there in front of him when the picture was taken. And he wants to look for the photo of Clay's head that was used? Shouldn't he be looking to see if it's Times New Roman or Courier?


But it was just playbiller who was in disbelief. While others didn't come out and suggest a PCT, they did express their disbelief that Clay Aiken, that wispy little man with the high pitched voice, was as gay as the day is long. Granted, their disbelief wasn't as great as mine was upon learning that some people were in disbelief that he was gay, but nevertheless, some did have a hard time with it. A sampling of a few of the comments from The Crushed and the Clueless:
  • From aikenobsessed01: hate me all you want, but this really sucks. I truely had faith in clay that he was NOT gay (222 posts)

  • From InuGirl009: I'll admit, I was hoping for at least bi, but I'm really happy he came out with the truth anyway. Good for him! (127 posts)
  • From Clays A NaturlaAphrodisiac: Can't say I'm entirely surprised. I thought the whole baby thing was so Will & Grace (you'll get this is you're a fan, like me). I'm happy for and proud of Clay, though. (12,780 posts)
Well, that's quite the variety of responses. The first person was relying on "faith" that Clay was NOT gay. Not sure why that's so important to that person because, in situations like this, "faith" is just a fancy-but-not-so-fancy word for "hope". Honey, you "hoped" he wasn't gay; you didn't have "faith" he wasn't gay. Then the second person was really hoping for at least a 50% shot at....absolutely nothing with Clay Aiken because he doesn't even know that she exists. That's a little pathetic (though her tone was sort of light, so now I'm going to have faith, ie hope, that she was kidding). "It's OK if you like others guys, but only as long as once in a while you like women. THEN it's fine. Well, it's OK." And finally, the person who wasn't "entirely" surprised, thus implying a wee bit o' surprise that Clay Aiken was gay. Then again, that person has made over twelve thousand posts in a forum devoted to Clay Aiken. After twelve thousand of anything, I'd like to think you have a better grip on it than to have any surprise at all when all of the gayness comes out in the press. But apparently not, so perhaps consider therapy. Maybe find a sort of gay mentor program where you can work on honing your gaydar with a seasoned veteran of the Gay Forces. (Their motto: Don't ask, don't have to!)

But aikenforums.com isn't the only Clay Aiken forum. Oh, no, there are more. Lots more. Too many to want to think about. The responses from the Clay lovin' folk over there at The Clayboard, were a bit more broken up about it than the aikenforums.com folk. Here's a sample of a select few posts from the ninety five pages of posts about this topic.

  • From strollynn63: This is a gut wrenching day for The ClayNation. Somebody wake me up, I hope its a dream. (12400 posts. Wow. And ClayNation? Not bad. But you're not dreaming. He's really gay. And you're really in need of some therapy.)
  • From HeidiSeek: I am having a really hard time with this!!! I am trying to be patient and wait to see what Clay says in the interview. (1062 posts. I wonder what she was hoping for? For Clay to say, "I'm gay, but I'm going to continue to date women."? Perhaps HeidiSeek could carpool to therapy with strollynn63 up there.)
  • From Holmes24: please tell me I'm not the only one who is shocked beyond belief! I feel numb I'm so upset. This can't be real!! How can you guys say this won't change anything? This changes EVERYTHING. I don't even know what to think right now. (424 posts. Well, how about if you start by thinking, "Oh, he's gay. He's the exact same person he was the 2 seconds before I knew he was gay." Why don't you start there and then I'm sure that other, more reasonable thoughts that you can think will just start flowing into your brain one after the other.)
  • From RedBay: I am very very sad. (21342 posts. Again, wow, over twenty thousand posts. Twenty thousand. And this person is sad about the "news". Wow. RedBay, perhaps pay a bit more attention to your subject matter. I've only made a handful of posts about Gay Clay and I paid attention enough to know he was Clay gay. You've posted 21,342 times about him. You really should have known.
  • From canear: I feel like I've been kicked in the stomach yet again. This isn't the way I expected to see Parker presented to the world. Some sort of forewarning to the fans would have been nice IMO. Can't think much past that right now. (8550 posts. Now, seriously, what sort of "forewarning" does this person have in mind? A little note slipped under their door in the middle of the night? The words "I'm Gay" engraved on a scented candle delivered via singing telegram via Gay Clay look alike? You don't know him personally, folks. He has NO idea who you are.)
  • From clalvis: OMG, I'm speechless about this announcement. I speculated during American Idol 2, but I defended him to my family and friends, even my husband, because Clay blogged and talked about things that REALLY HAPPENED. I just wished it was already 2009 and all the nayslayers would have gotten it out of their systems saying "I told you so". It's never been easy being a fan, but I'm still here Clay. (35 posts. There's still hope. Then again, she seems to think that Clay reads these posts as she makes the "I'm still here Clay" announcement, as if he'll be calling her to go shopping for window treatments with him.
  • From Missy222: I came home from happily shopping tonight to this hear the news of him being gay. I am so shocked I can't tell you how shocked I am even though he was accused for years, I stood up for him every time cause of the way he represented himself and talked about himself for years. He mislead. I am sad and shocked beyond belief. This will be a fundraising nightmare. The "kids and gays" idea doesn't mix well with society,, no matter what stance you take on the gay issue. . Wow, now how long will it take for all my friends to say "I told you so," after I defended him for years. (Who is she raising funds for? I'm pretty sure Clay has plenty of money. And the "he was accused for years" statement makes it sound as if he was just vindicated and freed from prison after serving decades as a wrongly convicted pedophile. I think the word that you were looking for was "speculation". But seriously lady, are you really THAT concerned that your friends will say "I told you so"? Who the hell cares? They're you're friends! They're supposed to give you S when something like this happens! It's their job! Why is that such an issue for you? That's just sad.)

Honestly, have these people never met an actual real, live gay peson? Holy canoli. But there was one post that stood above the rest. One post that made me concerned for certain sectors of society that these sort of individuals inhabit on a day to day basis. It makes me concerned for those around them and the day that they all get tired of tiptoeing around this person. It makes me wonder how this person was raised as a child to have this attitude about, let's just have a little perspective here, the NON news that Clay Aiken is GAY! For cryin' out loud.


  • The winner: This is really shocking news as I had no idea he was gay and now I have to deal with this. I am not sure what to say to people who know I was a fan. I didn't go to work today and am not answering the telephone."

Um, WTF? Honey, the only person who has to "deal with" Clay being gay is Clay. It's none of your business. It's not your life. You have nothing to deal with. Oh, wait, you have your own life that you should get back to immediately if you're posting thoughts like that one. Holy crap. Maybe you should hang out with Missy222 whose friends might say "I told you so". (By the way, Missy222, I told you so!) And you didn't go to work? For reals? I've heard of sick days and personal leave days, but your employer gives you "I just found out Clay Aiken is gay" days? Holy crap, that's progressive. And asinine. I'd suggest taking a mental health day, but only in the sense that you should check yourself into a psychiatric facility and have your melon examined. Actually, you should probably be flown to Vienna, the birthplace of psychiatry, where a whole team of shrinks can try and gain insight into how someone like you functions on a day to day basis without crumbling. Wow. Get back to work. Quickly, before you hear that Ellen married Portia.

I am not kidding you, what is wrong with people? They didn't know that Clay was gay, they are worried their friends might mock them (hey, if my friends didn't mock me for things ::cough:: Guitar Hero :::cough:::: I'd think I'd offended them in some way), they can't go to work, they won't answer their phone because...well, actually, I don't know why they would do any of this. And I'm going to have to delve further into it at some point, but I can't right now. Right now I need to go and do some research on a rumor I heard Ruben Studdard is black. Black, I tell you! And I for one am shocked, just shocked!

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Duuuudddde....

And just a brief follow up here on the now completed birthday festivities of a friend of mine.

It seemed to go well. I had put a fair amount of thought into some things and she seemed genuinely happy. I like it when she's like that. (Happy, that is. Not getting older. I mean, I don't care that she gets older, but that's not what I meant. You know what I mean!) It's pretty amazing to me sometimes how some people can have just a ton of crap to have to deal with and manage on a seemingly never ending basis, and yet they do it quite well. Some (like the some whose birthday was yesterday) just blow me away with how well-adjusted, good natured and not crazy they are. (Those are probably just a few reasons why she's been pretty good for me. And they're definitely a few reasons why it's been so cool.)

And my goal was twofold. One fold was to just be able to take care of something so that she wouldn't have to and that it would be a fair amount of time before she would have to take care of it again. And the second fold was just to see her so incredibly happy (there was jumping and clapping involved), not to mention extremely surprised. She was SO happy, it was the coolest thing to watch. It was pretty nifty to leave there just knowing that she totally dug it and that, just like I'd said, she had a good birthday. 'Cause that's what mattered most.

Happy birthday. Dude.

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We Need a Number....A Really BIG Number

I can't decide whether I really like it or I really hate it when these burning questions that I have finally get answered. (Questions about anything, really. I've been told I'm fairly inquisitive. That loosely translates into "fixated on day to day minutiae.") I'm pretty sure that it's a little bit of both, but neither one makes me feel any better than I did when I didn't know an answer to a question. And frankly, I don't think it's supposed to work that way, yet it often does. And you know I'm going to provide an example of just such a conundrum.

As the financial infrastructure of this fine (but dumb) country teeters on the brink of collapse, lawmakers are trying to reach an agreement for terms of providing a bit of financial assistance to the banking industries. It's an agreement that has been shopped to the American people as a "bailout". Personally, I don't know how they expect any taxpayer to get behind and be in favor of a "bailout". The term "bailout" is never a good thing, unless you're in a boat that's taking in water. Then it's a fabulous idea. Bailing out those who were unregulated, irresponsible and borderline retarded never sounds like a good idea, but sometimes you have to things in order to avoid something worse. In this case, it's either help out the failing and faltering banks or watch our economy shatter and set off a nationwide depression which will result in a sort of Blade Runner type of society with cannibalism. And no one wants that. Ever. In a boat taking on water or not.

In order to help out these banks that are in danger of going under, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke came up with a plan to dole out a bunch of cash to these banks. When I say "a bunch" I mean "a hell of a lot of cash". We're talking $700 billion dollars. Billion. With a 'B'. 'B' as in "Boy howdy, Slim. That's a buttload of money." And while I do trust Henry Paulson and while I do think that Ben Bernanke is capable of doing his job competently and well (though I'd kind of like Alan Greenspan's thoughts on this whole ordeal. It's not that I'm a Greenspan fan, but he was around for a while and that which is familiar makes me more comfortable.), I was having a hard time figuring out where that $700 billion figure came from.

Good thing that there's Forbes Magazine to help out with these things. They wanted to know where that figure came from as well, so they asked the Treasury Department about it. They got a response. And this is where I can't tell if I'm glad to have the answer or if I'm angry that I have the answer. If it's just one of those, I still don't know which one. But if it's a little bit of both of those, that would make sense, though I don't know how often I would fluctuate between being content and wanting to kick someone in the kneecaps. Really hard.

According to Forbes, a Treasury spokeswoman said, "It's not based on any particular data point. We just wanted to choose a really large number." Oh, I see. Well, thanks for clearing that uuuu....hey. Wait. Wait a minute. What? WTF?!?

It's not based on any particular data point? Are you kidding me? Shouldn't it be based on at least ONE particular data point? Like the point that shows you how much money you actually need to do this? Wouldn't that be a "particular data point" that you would want to know? Apparently, if you are the Treasury Department, no it is not something that they want to know. HOW is that possible? Isn't that how problems like this usually get started in the first place? By not basing anything on anything and just pulling a very large number straight out of thin air? Isn't that how all of the shady bastards in the real estate industry were pricing houses for a while there? Yeah, that's what I thought. Hmmm.

So the Treasury Department, in it's efforts to save the country from plunging into economic despair not seen since 1929, has decided to implement the PNOOOA strategy. PNOOOA is an acronym which stands for the Pulling Numbers Out Of Our Asses strategy. Well, I'm SO glad that the Treasury Department is around to help the country get out of this mess. I feel better already. Wait. No, I don't! Isn't taking out too much money the basis of the problem in the first place? And now these guys want to take out $700 billion because they "wanted a large number"? (Yeah, I wanted a really large number to be the limit on my first credit card, too. But that didn't happen and for good reason. The bank wasn't going to give me a really large number for my credit limit because I hadn't shown them that I was capable of managing less than a really large number yet. If I could show them that I was capable of that, then we could talk about my being allowed to manage more. But they weren't going to just let me go around spending money right and left and hope for the best that I'd make it all turn out pretty good in the end. Shocking, I know.)

That one statement from the Treasury Department spokeswoman tells me that the American public doesn't really know how big this thing is and, if $700 billion is just a "really large number" that they wanted, the cost of the entire dealio might not be that high. Of course, they don't explain why that is in the Forbes article. I guess that's because it's supposed to be a good enough answer for us. And while it really isn't, at least it gives me some vital information about what's going on over there. It definitely tells me that there are a whole bunch of Legislators with their heads up their asses who are trying to work out some sort of a deal to do something. Reassured, I am not.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Happy Birthday, H!

OK, so this post will have little significance for anyone other than myself and my buddy whose birthday is today (well, and maybe if I do it right, possibly her friends so that she can show them that I'm normal (stop it!) and not a freak (I said stop it!) like some of the others that she has attracted previously). I'm allowed to do stuff like this once in a while. I am the boss of me, after all.


Happy birthday, chica. I think that today will turn out better than you think it will. And thanks for wanting to spend part of it with me. You know....'cause I think you're kind of nifty and all. (You've been pretty good for me. I kind of like that).


Enjoy your day with your friends and with the boy. I'll see you later today (at which time you will still not have guessed what your present is, but won't need to for much longer), In and Out in hand. (No, that's not a euphemism. I'm bringing food. But always feel free to euphemize away!) In the meantime, I hope your day is at least as smokin' hot as you are.


Happy Birthday! ~ M

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Get Dressed And Stop Clowning Around

I understand that if you're some sort of group or organization and you haven't figured out how to weasel cash out of the government just yet, you're going to need to come up with funds in order to keep whatever it is that you do going. In order to raise these funds, said groups will usually hold some sort of "fundraiser" (Clever, no?) where they will typically sell something to raise money. Usually, the thing that they sell is in some way related to the organization and what they do. Girl Scouts sell cookies. (Granted, cookies aren't exactly related to being the actual scout, but they've been doing it for so long, that's just how it is. You say "Girl Scout", I think "Mmmm...cookies.") Livestrong sells yellow things. And the list goes on.

The graduates of San Francisco's Clown Conservatory Class of 2008 (Yes. There is a Clown Conservatory. Clown College, if you will. I guess calling it a "conservatory" makes it sound more serious, though I don't know what the point of that would be. They are clowns, thus the lack seriousness factor is automatically implied.) had been talking about how great they felt, physically, from all of the training that they were receiving. They also talked about how they felt like they had bonded to each other. (Well, what do you expect when you're crammed into a little teeny car with 50 other clowns? You're going to get close!) They decided that they wanted to do something that would make them feel great by doing it together. And what better thing for a bunch of recently graduated, fit feeling, clowns to do than to make a nude clown calendar to sell. Wait. What?

According to the folks over yonder at the Contra Costa Times, the lead clown on the project, a one Chad Benjamin Potter, explained the theory behind the idea by saying, "Our goal was to create this sort of craziness in your mind. When you think of clowns you think of costumes and makeup and hair. When you think naked clowns, that's something else entirely." Well, he got that right. I do think of something else entirely when I think of naked clowns. Come to think of it, I've never thought of naked clowns before now and I'm not sure that many other people have ever thought of naked clowns either. (If you have, just admit it; you're a perv.) But I'm thinking about it now! And I really don't like the entirely different thought that pops into my head at the thought of it. Ugh.

Chad went on with his attempts to justify this sort of thing by adding, "But of course we wanted to do something that everyone can enjoy." And if that was really what they wanted, it's a complete mystery as to why they went with the "naked clown" theme, as that seems like something next to no one can enjoy. He says it offers a "touch of modesty". "I am going to sell (the calendar) to my grandmother and I also want to sell it to my niece and my nephew." Hey, Chad. You know what else offers a "touch of modesty"? Right. Clowns that are not naked! Wearing clothes, be it on clowns or others, is the very definition of a "touch of modesty". It's really a rule to follow at all times. Want to be modest? Wear clothes! It always works.

The article goes on to explain that "Sales of the calendar will help raise money for the Judy Finelli Fund, a non-profit organization set up through the Circus Center. Finelli, 60, is a lifelong clown who co-founded the San Francisco School for Circus Arts, now the Circus Center. In 1989 she was diagnosed with MS. Today she is quadriplegic." And while I will be the first one to admit that this sounds like a fabulous cause, I will also be the first one to say that selling calendars with naked clowns in them is not the way to raise money for such fabulous cause. Selling calendars with naked clowns on them is the way to horrify the public in general and cause a decrease in the number of circus-goers in the future. You know. For fear of all of the nakedness running rampant amongst the clowns, as evidenced by January through December, 2009.

An art student, a one Gabriela Alonso, took the photos of the naked clowns. She did so "in a studio and, secretly, in public places." Secretly in public places? How do you accomplish THAT? And who is it a secret from exactly? The public or the clowns? (Dear God, please, please let it be the public. Please let there not have been naked clowns traipsing about the city.)

The overall goal here, is to raise (get ready for this lofty ambition) $1 million. A million bucks. From selling a 16 month calendar with naked clowns in it? Um, how much is this calendar in the first place? $100,000 each? Because I could maybe see you guys finding ten weirdos to buy one of these things, but I'm having a hard time seeing you guys finding around $100,000 weirdos to buy one of these things. A million bucks? Come on, you clowns! You have to know that's completely unrealistic. Why do you do things like that? Is it because you're clowns and therefore you cannot be serious about anything? Including reality and basic economics? This will not end well. I can see it coming.

But, look, if you're interested or whatever, the Naked Clown Calendar has a website (of course they do) and you can check it out and even purchase it (for $20, not $100,000) from there. I have no doubt that however much money they raise will be put to good use. And if I thought I could stand to look at naked clowns all the live long day for 16 months, I might buy one. But I can't, so I won't. And while the cause is good, this still seems strange to me. And I can't help but think it's going to turn out like the time that those seven ladies over there in Madrid (that's in Spain) did a nude calendar to raise money for their kids' school and ended up with 5,000 extra calendars and a lot of debt. And judging from the picture below, I'm sure you can understand why that was. Let's hope the clowns as a bit more successful in their naked endeavor. (There's a sentence I never thought I'd write.)

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