Monday, April 30, 2012

It's A President Eat Dog World Out There

For some reason, people have decided that now is a good time to bring up the fact that President Barry ate dog when he lived in Indonesia.  I can't possibly imagine how this is suddenly a revelation for some folks considering that this information was in his book "Dreams of my Father" which was published in 1995.  1995!  So, seventeen years ago, the guy writes about something that happened in his childhood which was a perfectly accepted practice for the culture that he was living amongst and NOW people want to make a big deal about it?  This can only mean that it's just going to get worse when the election starts to get closer.  But before things get worse, what say we just make fun of them in a fashion that really the Internet can do best, shall we?  I know!  Let's take pictures of various dogs in various poses and humorously caption them with references to President Barry's eating dogs almost fifty years ago.  Like this:  

 Or this:

We can always make it more interesting with The Most Interesting Man In The World:

Yes, we can?

And this  one is my favorite.  Mainly because I think that "Labradoodle" sounds funny.  Labradoodle. HA!  See?
How fun, right?  Yeah, whatever.  Can we let this go now?  Please.  There are eight gazillion things that need to be fixed right now and a bunch of yahoos are focusing on what President Barry had for dinner when he was four.  And you wonder why I think we're doomed?  That is why!

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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Everything Is Better With A Bag Of Weed

For some reason, I spent some time yesterday reading about the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana.  I don't know why.  It was Saturday.  I had time.  Anyway, the two sides pretty much boiled down to two very distinct arguments.  The people who are on the con side pretty much have your typical anti-drug attitude about why it shouldn't be legalized.  And they tend to make fairly logical arguments.  (I'm not saying that some of them are a bit alarmist, because holy crap, some of them most certainly are!  But it's not like you're ever going to have a ton of people on one particular side of an issue who agree on their reasoning for their particular issue.)  But the folks that are manning the pro-legalization tend to always kind of revert back to one issue overall.  Don't get me wrong.  They do try to make their points, but I find that everything that they say seems to end up sounding like this bit from Family Guy.  (I have no idea why it is set at about twice the normal speed, but it's the only one I could find without a ridiculously long self-serving introduction AND that contained actual scenes from the show instead of just words on a screen.  Sooooo, sorry, I guess.) Behold! 

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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Hold Your Son Responsible, Sir

I've had enough of parents protecting their precious little snowflake children when the kids are obviously in the wrong.  Kids are going to make mistakes when they grow up.  Most likely, given the scope of a lot of regular teenage mistakes, they'll be fine.  Maybe not always great, but fine.  And even if they're not great, it's highly unlikely that it's because of ONE mistake that they made as a teenager.  (The exceptions to this sweeping generalization are obviously things like pregnancy and felonies.)  But the point here is that if they do something wrong and they admit to doing it wrong, what you as a parent are not supposed to do is then turn around and sue the school district because the school kicked your kid out of an honors English class because he cheated. 

And according to the San Jose Mercury News, that's exactly what happened.  It would seem that Jack Berghouse's son was caught cheating in his honors English class.  Now, at the beginning of the year, all of the students had to sign an "Academic Honesty Pledge.  Not only that, but his mother signed it as well.  Said pledge explained that if a student was caught cheating (among other offenses) that they would be removed from the honors English class and placed into a regular English class.  Berghouse's son got caught cheating.  He was expelled from the class.  That's when Berghouse sued.  

Mr. Berghouse claims to be concerned about his child's future and says that his expulsion from this particular honors English class could make it so that his son doesn't get into the college of his choice.  I'm kind of wondering at this point how many choices the kid is actually going to have once the colleges that he will apply to get wind of this fiasco.  Oh, yeah, I'm sure there are plenty of colleges out there just a-clammorin' to have a student with a lawsuit happy parent.  Sure there are!  Come on in, son!  Aside from being completely baseless, I have the feeling that this lawsuit is going to end up doing more harm than it will good. 

Mr. Berghouse, who is a lawyer, said "I'm getting a lot of hate calls at my office.  I had no freaking idea this would happen."  Really?  You had NO idea that people would be mad as hell that you were coming to the defense of your son who admitting to cheating in a class?  You had NO idea that people wouldn't take well to your suing the school district to get your son reinstated into a class that he got himself kicked out of?  You had NO idea that people would be angry that you don't teach your son to accept responsibility for stuff when he messes up?  NO idea at ALL, Mr. Berghouse?  I have a difficult time believing that.  Did he actually think that people would be on his side?  The kid signed a pledge not to cheat!  He cheated!  And Mr. Berghouse thinks that the school shouldn't follow through with the stated consequence that was outlined in the pledge?  Wow.  OK, then.  The only time I've ever been that delusional is after several bottles of wine.

Mr. Berghouse went on to explain "There is the possibility this will cause permanent harm. What university will it keep him out of? Will that have far-ranging consequences in what kind of job he can get?"  He's right.  This could cause permanent harm.  I doubt that it will, but he's right that some colleges might not want a student who is a cheater.  (Go figure!)  Regardless, that's why there are measures in place to discourage cheating.  Funny how they didn't work on his son.  Gee, with his attitude, I can't imagine why.  Hmmm....Well, he also said, "He knows it's wrong...You cannot imagine the mental and emotional penalty that has been inflicted upon him. We've offered several penalties, anything other than being kicked out of the English program."  But...but...a punishment isn't a punishment if it's something that you WANT to DO!

He signed a pledge saying (essentially) that he would not cheat.  The pledge specified that if any of the things outlined in the pledge were not adhered to that the student would be removed from the program.  The kid signed it and his mother signed in.  And now they're upset because he cheated and the school followed through?!  They want a DIFFERENT penalty?  Why would that even work?  Could you imagine if our justice system worked that way?  ("Uh, your honor...I know that my client admitted to embezzling millions of dollars and squandering the funds on an alpaca farm just outside of Toledo.  But if you send him to jail, that will really affect his ability to make any money in the future.  Therefore, we'd like to suggest a different penalty.  Perhaps picking up trash or reading to the blind.  We just don't think that jail is the right thing, even though my client knew he was committing a crime.") 

I'd like to ask Mr. Berghouse what he would say to all of the students in his son's class who did NOT cheat.  See, they didn't cheat and they're allowed to be in the program.  Doesn't it devalue the hard and honest work that the other students are doing to allow a cheater to come back to the class because of his daddy is afraid it will ruin his future?  I'd be mad as hell if a kid that had been caught cheating was allowed to be in an elite class with me when I had spent the whole time NOT cheating.  That's the thing.  The rules for staying IN the class are quite simple.  Don't cheat.  And really, if the kid couldn't grasp that concept, should he really BE in Honor's English to begin with?  He doesn't sound all that bright. 

Wouldn't it be great if the consequences from this are EXACTLY what they should be?  I mean that sincerely.  Wouldn't it be extremely just if some kid who did not cheat ended up with the spot at college where Mr. Berghouse's son would have been if he didn't cheat?  I think that would be perfect.  Granted, I don't think that's going to happen because I think that Mr. Berghouse is overreacting and that his son's entire academic future does not hinge on this one SOPHOMORE Honor's English class.  I'm pretty sure that he'll be OK in spite of the asshattery that he displayed by cheating.  It's not like he killed someone.  Though if he had, I'm sure Mr. Berghouse would come up with a reason why he shouldn't be punished.

I hope that Mr. Berghouse continues to get angry phone calls at his office.  They don't need to be hateful.  They don't need to be mean or threatening.  But people like Jack Berghouse are responsible for the dumbing down of America.  They're also responsible (as ironic as this is going to sound) for people not taking responsibility for anything that they've done!  Your child is not a precious little snowflake that should be exempt from all consequences for his poor choices!  And you don't get to choose your punishment, either!  Is that becoming a thing?  I think I remember writing about that recently.  Something about someone else who got caught doing something illegal and was upset because they were being charged even though they offered to right the wrong that they had been accused of.  That's not how this works!  And if things go the way that they should go, that's not the way that it will ever work! 

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Friday, April 27, 2012

Poison Safety

Gather 'round kids!  It's story time!  I don't usually tell personal tales, but this one is pretty much on theme with the ridiculous stuff that I usually write about that I figured I should share. 

I bought this bottle of wasp poison off of the Internet.  It appears to be sort of like a weapon of mass destruction in disguise.  I'm really not even sure if it's legal for me to possess this in the over-regulated nanny state of Fascist-fornia over here.  (And if it is illegal, then this story is completely made up.  Something I'm working on.  Yeah, that's it.  NOT factual at all in the case of any possible illegality.)  But these wasps won't leave and I want them to.  I've tried several other methods and nothing works.  None of this really matters.  What matters is that I had a bottle of an extremely hazardous substance in my hand. 

So I'm getting ready to use this stuff and I take off the cap.  I look down and there is one of those safety seal devices over the opening of the bottle.  A safety seal!  It's poison!  I understand having the safety cap so that kids (and not particularly savvy adults) can't get into it accidentally and because it prevents spills.  I get that.  What are they trying to keep out with that seal?  Are they afraid I'm going to put vitamins or something in there to counteract the deadly substance?  Why is there a safety seal on poison? 

Naturally, pulling one of those things off of poison wasn't any easier than pulling it off a bottle of ketchup or something like that.  I grab the bottle with one hand and the safety tab with the other and attempt to pull it cleanly off.  Naturally, because it's there for safety and because it's an extremely toxic chemical, it goes all over the place (just like the ketchup always does).  Mind you, if I had just opened the lid and it was just normal, I wouldn't have spilled a freaking drop.  But in the name of safety, I ended up being covered in wasp killer.  That can't be good.  Sure, I washed it right off, but I would have rather not had to wash it off, you know?  But all in the name of safety, no matter how stupid and counter-intuitive it may seem! 

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Thursday, April 26, 2012

That's Not A Pizza

Are we in agreement that wacky food items with insanely high calorie counts have kind of jumped the shark?  I'm not the only one, right?  Yes, I know that people still like to get all breathless about things whenever some restaurant out there introduces some new menu item that is just CRAZY.  But I just don't feel like it's that big of a deal anymore and it's becoming some sort of squeezing blood out of a turnip attempt at reeling people in. I'm not into it anymore.  I'm not sure exactly when I lost interest.  It was definitely after the KFC Double Down because that thing wasn't as much of a gimmick as it was plain ol' delicious.  But I digress.  The latest abomination trying to gain media attention in lieu of just advertising is from the fine folks over there at Pizza Hut.  Behold! 

Now, if you're thinking "Oh, what the hell is that?" you're not alone.  That is apparently a cheeseburger pizza.  It's a "pizza" with a crust made out of little cheeseburgers.  Now, in what way is that a pizza?  Because it's round and incorporates a dough as the basis for the food item?  I thought that we had all been pretty clear for quite some time as to what constitutes a pizza.  Taking burger items and baking them in a flat ringed circle and then throwing condiments in the middle is not a pizza!  It's something, I'll give you that.  But pizza?  Come on.  You know it's not.  I'm being sucked in this time.  Not only does that look disgusting, it looks wrong.  And that's probably because they're calling it a pizza.  It's not a pizza.  Look at it!  It's NOT pizza!

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

But He Could Pay It Back

How did student loans end up being a big topic of discussion for President Barry?  How did they end up being a big topic of discussion for a bunch of people, really?  I mean, we're talking about student loans here.  No one was forced to take out these loans.  Nor was anyone forced to take out an exorbitant amount of money with whatever interest rate came along with that money.  So why are some people acting like because they can't afford to pay for a decision that they made on their own, that their loans should be forgiven or something like that because they can't afford to pay them back?  That's the confusing part for me.

Now President Barry is in on it.  And what he has to say about it, I find to be absolutely ridiculous.  According to the Huffington Post, President Barry was at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill giving a speech to students who I imagine just as eager as can be to lap up what he was saying.  And what he was saying was something along the lines of "We didn't come from wealthy families. So when we graduated from college and grad school, we had a mountain of debt. When we got married, we got poorer together."  He didn't appear to mention that he did receive a scholarship to Occidental College.  And those will help!  But left out that part.  It's hard to make people feel responsible for themselves when you want to make sure that they feel as if everything is stacked against them. But here's the part that I found astonishing.  He apparently mentioned that "they only finished paying off their student loans about eight years ago." 

Let's take a look at that.  He finished paying off his loans in 2004.  Now, he attended Harvard Law School, so I'm pretty sure that someone as smart as he is didn't go into it thinking that it would be cheap.  I did some calculations and with the aid of an inflation calculator I figured out that three years at Harvard Law from 1989-1991 when he graduated would have been about $131,678.09 at the time.  (Adjusted in 2010 dollars, tuition is $47,600 per year plus $25,000 for "room, board, books, travel and personal".  I don't know about you, but when I went to college, I didn't have any travel expenses.  Then again, I didn't go to Harvard.)  I have no idea what sort of loan he took out, so I don't know what sort of interest he paid.  Again, he didn't mention that stuff. 

So he graduated in 1991 and it took him 13 years to pay off his student loans.  That comes out to a payment of around $1,149.63 per month.  Now that's just for himself.  He did say "we had a mountain of debt".  Michelle went to Princeton on a scholarship, but she also went to Harvard Law School, so let's assume that she had the same amount of debt and owed a payment of around $1,149.63 per month.  That's  $2,299.26 per month.  Again, this is without interest.  Add on about 5% interest makes another $57.48 per month per loan or $114.96 per month for both.  That would make their total monthly payment around $2,414.22.  For thirteen years. 

So, let me get this straight.  He and his wife went to Harvard freaking Law School and racked up loans for (by my estimation) somewhere around $263356.18.  For those of you unfamiliar with numbers, that's over a quarter of a million dollars.  Is he really complaining about making enough money with a Harvard law degree that he was about to pay back over a quarter of a million dollars in only thirteen years?  You have to be kidding me. 

See, it needs to be pointed out here that he went to a prestigious university that cost an incredibly insane amount of money, but earned a degree that was actually at least worth what he paid for it.  He didn't go to Harvard and pay that sort of money just to end up with an art history degree which he would then use as a qualification to make my caramel macchiato at Starbucks.  What did he think was going to happen when he went to Harvard?  Probably exactly what actually happened.  He accumulated a debt that he would be able to pay off.  (After all, he graduated in 1991 and was first elected as a US Senator in 1996.  Senators make $165,200 now which is the equivalent of $120,129 in 1996.  So only 5 years out of college and he was definitely making over $100,000 per year.  And that's not to say that he wasn't making at least that much before then.  That's just a definite figure for a definite year.  Michelle was making at least that much as well.  Actually, from what I can figure out, she was probably making more than him for a while.) 

The point here is that he took on debt that he could afford.  That's not a problem.  These people that take on massive amount of debt when they're not going to Harvard and then they don't make a ton of money because they got a degree that doesn't exactly print money (theater and fashion majors, I'm looking at you) are the ones that are the problem.  It's not the same.  And I don't see why taxpayer dollars (Translation: my money) should be going to pay off loans for people who took them out when they couldn't afford them.  I'm not saying that the system is perfect.  But I am saying that there are a lot of people complaining about things that are totally their own doing.  And I'm getting a little tired of fixing other people's problems.

I can't believe that he stood up there and acted like only paying off his student loans eight years ago was some sort of a big deal when he and Michelle likely had over $260,000 in debt to pay back. And it only took him thirteen years!  That seems like awfully quick for the amount of money that was involved.  But those students at UNC Chapel Hill just lapped it all up.  Since when did disillusioning the young in this manner become a fashionable thing to do?  Getting a college education is SO important.  Getting it at the expense of your future financial stability is not a good idea.  Can't we push that message a little bit more?  Just a little?  Please? 

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Not So Peaceful There, Ron

Do you remember Ron Artest? He's the guy who was on the Indiana Pacers back in 2004 and started a huge brawl at an NBA game by jumping into the stands and grabbing a spectator and punching him because he thought the fan had thrown something at him. Even if you don't remember hearing about that, I'm sure that just my brief description gives you a pretty good idea of what a class act he is. (By the way, he ended up getting himself suspended for an entire year with that display of lunacy. Seems like he got off a little easy if you're asking me. I don't like to go to NBA games where I have to worry about whether or not one of the players is going to snap off and attack a fan and incite a mini riot inside of an arena. It's not South American soccer!)

Last year, Mr. Artest changed his name. And he didn't change it to Bill or Fred or anything even remotely resembling a name. Yeah, he changed it to Metta World Peace. See, that's not really a name. It's words, but not so much words that would make up the name of a person. But it does sound peaceful. It has the word "peace" right there. Metta World Peace. OK, I'm just never going to get used to that. And I'm not so sure that anyone else should get all that used to it either. They certainly shouldn't be expecting him to actually be peaceful, for cryin' out loud.

The other night, the LA Lakers (who Metta World Peace Artest plays for) were playing against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Artest makes a dunk and then to celebrate, he full force elbows a one James Harden right in the face. Real peaceful! Now, Artest (I'm not calling him anything with the word "peace" in it if he's going to be acting like that) tried to argue his case to the referee that he was just "celebrating" the dunk that he just made. The problem with that excuse is that after he lays out James Harden, he just goes on like nothing ever happened. Harden is on the floor, writhing in pain from just being elbowed in the head. Artest doesn't do anything other than walk away. Doesn't go check on him. Nothing. Just starts to whine to the ref when it becomes obvious that he's about the be ejected.

If someone is going to call themselves something as stupid as Metta World Peace, I guess I shouldn't really expect that person to behave in any sort of manner other than one filled with that same stupidity. And I guess that same stupidity is maybe why it never crossed Ron Artest's mind to check on the guy that he just leveled to the floor with an elbow to the head? I don't know what this guy's problem is, but I think he might be just a little too violent for the NBA. Maybe he should try hockey. They love to beat the crap out of each other. It sounds right up his alley. The video of this horror is below. Someone needs to elbow him in the head, preferably with a hammer. (I know that doesn't really make sense, but I really want someone to hit him in the head!)

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Monday, April 23, 2012

Don't Cheat The Hookers

Listen, I don't care if you frequent prostitutes. That's your business. But if you're a Secret Service agent and you're hired to protect the President of the most powerful leader in the world whilst your in the middle of a narco-state like Colombia, I'd prefer that you not get yourself a hooker while you're working. Call me crazy, but that's just the way I feel. But that's not even my biggest issue with prostitutes. If you're going to hire yourself a hooker, make sure that you pay her whatever it is that she charges. Don't try and rip her off after you've already had all of the sex. Not even a little. Especially if it's you and one of your Secret Service buddies who want to be with her together (you weirdos). Seriously, don't act like you guys should only pay her for one of you rather than both of you just because you guys were there at the same time. What is wrong with you? At the very least, you've gotta be realistic. No one enjoys being a hooker. And I'm sure that the hookers would just appreciate it, considering that they just had sex with you, if the least you could do is pay them what they're owed. And for God's sake, don't insult them when the bill is $800 by offering them $29. What in the world could you possibly be thinking by doing THAT? And now look what a mess it all is. Good move, cheapskate jackass. OK, I think I'm done here.

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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Google, You Have Some 'Splaining To Do

Hey, Google? Yeah, um, what the hell, man?! All I wanted to know is whether or not you're supposed to wash fish after you buy it. That's all. Verrrrrry simple inquiry. Could have really been satisfied with a simple yes or simple no. But that's not what happened, Google. And you know what happened! You did it! Would you like to explain yourself? Don't look at me like that. You know exactly what I mean! The second result! The second result! (Click to enlarge.) HOW does that end up as one of my choices?! Get it out of there! I don't want to know!

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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Does This Change Anyone's Mind?

Guess what?! A new picture of George Zimmerman has been released (for some reason). Now, you might remember (or you might not because you might have blocked it all out of your mind because you just couldn't stand to hear about a bunch of speculation over and over and over again) George Zimmerman is the guy who shot Trayvon Martin about a month ago. If you don't know what I'm talking about, might I suggest you volunteer to be on this man's jury. They're looking for people like you. When the video of George being taken into the police station surfaced, I heard way more than my share of "He looks fine to me" and "I thought that he was in a fight". Too rarely did I hear "He could have been cleaned up by the paramedics" and "That video is so blurry that it might as well have been shot with a potato". Anyway, here's the new picture. Behold!

Well, how 'bout that? Looks like the back of his head was bloody because he had been injured. Just like he had said that it was. Just like the police report said that it was. And I'm not saying that this means anything one way or the other. But it does mean that something happened out there before everything got kind of shooty. I'm not saying that I know what happened (and neither do you, by the way). There are only two people who know exactly what happened and one of them is dead. If I hadn't gotten so sick of hearing this story misreported and misrepresented ad nauseum, I might be interested in what people who were so quick to jump to a conclusion had to say about this. (I'm sure they're already got their conspiracy theories a-brewin'.) What I'd like to know is why this information is just trickling out? Or actually, why it's coming out at all? But considering how irresponsible the media has been up to this point, I see no reason to expect them to handle all of this any differently.

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Friday, April 20, 2012

That's Not Why

I'm going to make this brief because I had thought that we had already gone past this. Apparently not. Remember last summer when some lunatic in Norway went on a rampage and shot and killed 77 people? He was a most prolific lunatic indeed. Now he's in a Norwegian court (whatever that means) and this is the crap that he's pulling. Behold!

In case you can't read that (and have forgotten how to click to make the pretty pictures bigger) the caption on the left reads: Killer Breivik trained on video games for massacre. Anders Behring Breivik, who admits killing 77 people in Norway last summer, tells a court he used a video game to train for the shooting spree on the island of Utoya. (Wasn't Utoya Michael Jackson's sister? No, wait. That was LaToya. Honest mistake. Never mind.) And the asinine caption on the right reads "Anders Behring Breivik posted details of the murderous intentions online before last year's Norway massacre. Andrew Keen questions whether the internet, social media and video games encourage his actions." Aaaaarrrrggghhhh!

Do people really think that playing video games can lead them to kill 77 people? Really? Why would that be? Because there's killing in video games? And since there's killing in video games then that would influence someone to kill in real life? Well, in order for that to be true, wouldn't one have to look at the overall influence of video games as a whole in order to determine their effect (if any) on human behaviors? It wouldn't just be the violent stuff that influences people, right? It would be the non-violent stuff as well, wouldn't it? I don't see how you could argue a theory about video game violence encouraging violent behaviors without seeing if the video game influence encouraged other behaviors as well.

Seriously, if video games were that influential over people wouldn't the majority of people on Facebook be farmers right now? Do you know how many times Farmville has been installed? Over 110 million times. Over 63 million people dink around with that ridiculously annoying game every month. 32 million people waste time with that game every single day. Where are ALL THE FARMERS?!

Let me explain something that, if you're reading this blog, you probably already know. Sometimes, the most likely explanation for something is also the easiest explanation. I guess people don't like easy very much because those explanations almost never come up. In the case of this nutjob in Norway, I'll explain to you exactly what happened. And I'm going to try not to get all technical so that I'm easily understood. Stop me if I go too fast or there's something confusing about this. Ready? Here goes...Some people are just freaking crazy.

That's it! That's all there is. Simple enough? You'd think that it would be. But I guess that the news outlets wouldn't get enough ratings if they reported the news like: "Today in Norway, a man killed 77 innocent people. Some folks are just freaking crazy. Now we go to Bob with the weather. Bob..." I'm sorry that sometimes crazy people get in the way of not crazy people. But it happens. And it certainly isn't going to do any good to blame video games for the aforementioned craziness, all right? Video games didn't make that guy kill all of those people. He just did. And I'm sorry that it happened, but not so sorry that I'm going to start feeding into BS theories that have absolutely no basis in fact. Now for the weather...

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

This Spelling Stinks

I am a stickler for spelling, grammar and punctuation. I hate "text speak" because it makes you look like an idiot. Whose idea was it to start substituting the number 3 for the letter E? They're not the same. And they never will be. Same goes for substituting "dis" for "this" or "dat" for "that". Leaving off the E on the end of words? Just stupid. Putting a Y in place of an I? Equally as stupid. You look like a moron when you type things like "Lyke dis if u cry evertim". And when you do, you sound like this. (You're gonna need to click that to get the point here.) But the real problem arises when you mean to say one word, but you're too clueless to spell the word correctly. And in committing to said incorrect spelling, you completely change the meaning of what you were trying to say. And the difference can be huge. Need an example? Behold!

No one wants to smell like colon, you dumbasses. Cologne maybe. Colon? Highly unlikely. Then again, the whole text speak is something stupid that's popular that I don't understand. Maybe smelling like colon is another one of those popular things. But sweet Jesus, I certainly hope not.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Millionaires Don't Need Food Stamps

It's always nice to hear when at least someone comes to their senses. In this case, the person coming to their senses is Attorney General Bill Schuette of Michigan. Mr. Schuette decided to press fraud charges against a one Amanda Clayton because after she won a million dollars in the state lottery, she continued to collect food stamps and public assistance. You got it. Wins a million dollars. Thinks she's entitled to food stamps because she "isn't working". Riiiiiight. Good for Mr. Schuette.

According to the New York Daily News, Ms. Clayton is "...accused of collecting $5,475 in food stamps and public medical benefits over eight months". Just let that sink in. She wins a million dollars (OK, a $735,000 lump sum as opposed to the million being paid out in installments) and continues collecting money from the state because she "isn't working". Benefits aren't based on JUST whether or not you're working, cupcake! You have money! You don't need assistance! It's right there in the name! Assistance!

But for some reason, there seem to be a lot of unnecessary questions or some confusion over this most excellent move by Mr. Schuette. Naturally, some of the opposition comes from Ms. Clayton's defense lawyer, a one Stanley Wise, who said "They want to make an example of her...She's offered to repay the money. They haven't even sent her a bill. If that were the only issue, it would be over and done. They have chosen to exploit this for their purposes, and we have to deal with it." Yeah, see, it doesn't work like that. When someone gets caught stealing like a laptop, it doesn't make it OK if they just give the laptop back and say, "My bad!" As far the whole making an example out of her, I say good! I'm just sad that people even need this sort of an example. ("Citizens, I'd like to give you an example of what not to do. For example, if you win a million dollars, do not continue to take food stamps when you are perfectly capable of buying your own food. For example.)

Her mother isn't exactly seeing this for how it is either. Euline Clayton said that "...her daughter used bad judgment but that a criminal case is "crap"." You see, ma'am, most criminals use bad judgment. That's part of the criminal code of conduct. (Rule One: You must use bad judgment, as good judgment will cause you to not commit crimes.) She also noted that "The charges "are very extreme. ... They arrested her like a vulture...She didn't steal $1 million." I don't understand any of that. Arrested her like a vulture? So they circled her until she died and then they feasted on her rotting carcass? I don't think that happened. And no one is saying that she stole a million dollars. She stole $5,475. That's plenty.

The article also mentions that when a one Joy Yearout, a Schuette spokeswoman was asked "...why the attorney general chose felony charges over a civil lawsuit or why Clayton was arrested and locked up overnight for a non-violent crime", she declined to comment. I really wish that Ms. Yearout had answered with something to the effect of "We chose felony charges because she committed a felony." Seems simple and straightforward enough to me. It was kind of a stupid question to begin with if you're asking me. As far as being locked up for a non-violent crime, it might shock people to learn that people get locked up for non-violent crimes all the time. If they weren't locked up, they probably wouldn't be considered "crimes", per se. I wish I knew who made that inquiry. I'd really like to give them the answers that they so sought.

I hope this chick goes down. Yep, that's right. I'm hoping that they make a nice big, fat example out of her and all of her non-violent crime which stole taxpayer money from its originally intended purpose. If you'd like to see a video of this little snowflake in action, here's an interview that she did when she was approached by a reporter. Get ready to be angry, though. Very angry.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Ain't Nobody Got Time For That

You knew that this was coming. You knew that when there was that interview with the extremely colorful Ms. Sweet Brown that there would be an Autotune version of said interview coming shortly. And thankfully, we are not to be disappointed. There's even a cameo by Antoine Dodson (who I swear is this woman's long lost brother or something). It's a rather catchy tune. I think that I'm going to make it my alarm, maybe for the rest of my life.

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Monday, April 16, 2012

There's No Love Crimes

As I'm sure you're well aware, I don't understand people. They fascinate me, but I just don't get the majority of 'em. Criminals really perplex me, as do some of our laws for dealing with certain criminals. Those laws would include the recently coined "hate crimes". Hate crimes confuse me because they seem to attempt to make horrible things even more horrible if the reasons why the crimes were committed have anything to do with any sort of bias. Like for some reason, if you beat the crap out of someone because they're gay or because they're a certain race you don't care for, somehow that is supposed to be perceived as worse than if you had just beaten the crap out of someone without that bias. I just don't know if the person who was beaten really cares why. I'm guessing that they wished that they hadn't been beaten at all. What I'm trying to say here is that I don't understand how it's "worse" if we know the reason why someone chose a particular victim.

But apparently, it's become a fairly big deal. Let's look at the events that took place in Tulsa on Good Friday of this year. Turns out, that particular Friday wasn't quite so good for a lot of people. That's because a couple of losers decided to go on a shooting spree and ended up shooting five people and killing three of them. Not very good at all. The idiots who are allegedly responsible (Translation: they most likely totally did it) for these acts are now being charged with hate crimes because their victims were black and the assailants are not. I have no idea if they're actually racists or not. But does it really matter? It probably doesn't to the dead people. They're dead whether their killer was a racist or just an idiot. And I still don't see how one is worse than the other.

The LA Times has an article about this very thing. And in it, we learn that one of the shooters, a one Jacob England, would like to assure all of us that he's not a racist. As if that makes this any better for anyone! See how silly hate crime laws are? ("You killed my mother? Oh, but you're not a racist? Well, OK then! I feel much better the senseless slaughter of my relative. Carry on!") You can see the video of Jacob the (allegedly) Guilty at the link above. He's a little difficult to understand because he doesn't exactly enunciate very well, but it's really kind of a moot point since I don't think that anything that he has to say at this point really matters.

In the video, Jacob says, "I always got along with everybody. It didn't matter what color he was." I'm just going to go ahead and guess that he didn't always get along with everybody. And I'm pretty sure that he's not getting along with "everybody" right now. I'm guessing that there are some people out there, say...the relatives of the people that he allegedly shot, that he's not going to be getting along with so well.

For some reason, Jacob's mother had sent a letter to the folks who are now Jacob's lawyers. She probably would have just gone in and talked to the lawyers in person if she hadn't been sitting in jail for the last eleven years for something related to arson. Yeah, he seems to come from a great family. Way to go, Mom! In the letter, she writes "
Our family does not hate black people...Two of my beloved grandchildren are African American." Who CARES?! You're more worried about people thinking that your son is a racist as opposed to them thinking that he is a murderer?! This is what we've arrived at?! For reals?!

She goes on to write that "Jake had a lot of responsibilities piled on him and I think it was too much." Yeah, that's not much of a defense, either. I was unaware that having a lot of responsibilities could cause someone to go out and just start shooting random people one day. I think that I'd prefer that she said that he was a racist. At least that would be relevant. Too many responsibilities? Pipe down.

Do you see what I'm saying? This guy allegedly/probably killed a bunch of people. And really, if it was someone that I loved who had been killed by this guy for what is essentially no reason at all, I don't know if having a reason is going to make it better or worse. That's why the term "hate crime" is ridiculous. It's not like there's any such thing as a "love crime". I think that most crime isn't exactly what I'd call friendly. Giving it a certain name and somehow implying that one sort of murder is worse than another sort of murder doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

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Sunday, April 15, 2012

How Does This Even Happen?

Sometimes, I hear of a story that is just so odd that I don't know how to feel about it. On the one hand, it's probably terrible what a certain person did. On the other hand, if that person couldn't have committed their terrible act without complicit involvement from the "victims", am I still supposed to feel bad? I'm not sure. And in this case, it's so freaking weird that I'm just all confused.

Our story takes place in the quiet West Wales village of Cwmduad, near Carmarthen. Let's just call it the UK. A guy named Reginald Gill came up with a plan. Now, just because it's a "plan" doesn't mean that it should have had any chance at all of succeeding. That it did succeed is completely astounding and believe me, I will delve into that later. But according to The Daily Mail, Mr. Gill had a business that involved the peddling of homeopathic products and treatments. It was in this practice that he was also passing himself off as a doctor. And as in his capacity as a fake doctor in a store full of hokum, he came up with what I can only describe as the stupidest idea ever. Then again, it did work, so what do I know?

Here's what he did: This guy told women that they had breast cancer. Horrible, right? But then, he told them that he had a cure! Oh, yay! (Yeah, you know it's not gonna be real, right? Ok, good.) And the cure that he proposed was for him, the "doctor", to suck on their breasts for thirty minutes a day! Now, I don't know if that's thirty minutes each or thirty minutes total. I guess that it's probably just 30 minutes on the allegedly afflicted bosom. But that's not the craziest part. No, the craziest part is that at least three women agreed to this!

Listen, in the age of the Internet, why you would just automatically agree to have a seventy-seven year old dude start suckling on you like a new born calf? Actually, in the realm of consciousness, why wouldn't you, at the very least, get a second opinion? You don't think to yourself, "Hmmm. Well, that's a little unconventional. I've never heard of such a treatment. And it sounds perverse. I wonder if I should get another opinion?" That never crosses your mind? Not ONCE?! What is wrong with you?

Somehow, this gets out. I guess there was at least one woman who received a fake diagnosis and an even faker treatment plan and decided that perhaps it be best for her to alert some sort of authority to the matter. He goes to trial and is found guilty and sentenced to eight years. I don't know what the typical jail sentence is for something like this, but I'm not going to argue with eight years. And really, I'm not so sure that he should be going to jail at all. Maybe if he had played his cards better...

Wait! Just hear me out! He could have told the judge, "Look...I came up with an absolutely stupid idea. Perhaps, the stupidest idea that's ever been thought up. It shouldn't have worked on anyone ever! How is the fact that it worked my problem? This was a bad plan! It is laughable that anyone would have fallen for it! That they did, I don't see how that's my fault! Your Honor." And if he had said that, he would have been right! It takes two! How do those women, those clueless, gullible, softheaded women, how do they not share any of the blame! If you think about it, none of this could have ever happened without their help. I'm just sayin'.

And accompanying this guy to jail will be his 35-year old wife! What is her deal? She's married to a weirdo who is 42 years older than her (and not in a good way) and she goes along with this little plot?! How does that work? Does he present her with his patently stupid idea (that never should have succeeded on anyone ever) and she just says, "Let me get this straight. You want to pretend that you're a doctor and tell women that they have breast cancer when they really don't so that you can suck on their boobs when you tell them that's the cure...I'M IN!"

I'm telling ya, I'd like to talk to everyone involved in this fiasco. Just for like ten minutes each. I have several concise questions that I'm dying to ask the willing participants in this lunacy! Granted, most of them start with "WTF", but there are some variances.

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Saturday, April 14, 2012

I Could Do That

You know how much I hate that there is a world record category for "Most Expensive (insert food item of your choice here)"? Very much, that is correct. It's completely ridiculous because people make food that doesn't actually have food in it and then they call it expensive food and end up with some sort of a world record. Isn't that like if I took a chihuahua and put him on top of a ten foot ladder and called him "World's Tallest Dog"? I mean, it's not exactly the same, but it's pretty close.

Here, let me give you a real example. Over there at Yahoo! News, we
learn about a one "renowned "Karat chef" Angelito Araneta Jr." Now, I knew that the article was going to irritate me because, as I'm sure that you've already realized, there is no such thing as a "Karat chef". Oh, sure, it's a that guy. But I don't know that if you put "Karat chef" on a resume or even if you brought it up in conversation that anyone would know what in the world you were talking about. This is important because this entire article seems to be about made up stuff that people are acting like is real stuff. It's NOT! (Please see my previous "World's Tallest Dog" example for elaboration on that concept.)

So Mr. Araneta Jr. is trying to make the World's Most Expensive Sushi. And just to be clear, that is a thing. That could be a thing. There are plenty of super pricey cuts of fish out there. But the problem I have with Mr. Araneta Jr's method is that he doesn't stick to fish. And that's really what I have contention with. If you're going to make the "World's Most Expensive" of any kind of food, I would think that the one requirement, the one minimum standard that you'd have to meet would be that what you prepared was actually food. And as I'm sure that you can guess by my tone, this is not actually food.

See, the "secret" to achieving the "World's Most Expensive Sushi" seems to be for it to be topped with not fish eggs or fish or anything of the sort, but rather to have diamonds and pearls sitting atop the little bite sized pieces (which, incidentally, also appear to be wrapped in some sort of 24-karat gold leaf thing)! Diamonds and pearls aren't FOOD. Since when does this count?! Since when can you just start putting jewels on top of food and get yourself in the Guinness Book of World Records?!

The sushi apparently appraises at $1,978.15 in US dollars. Why stop there? Why not set the sushi on top of a gold bar and park a Hummer on top of it?! That would obliterate that measly amount that this guy came up with. What's a Hummer going for these days? Fifty grand? There you go! How is that any different from what he's doing? It seems the same to me! Can't eat the diamonds and you can't eat the Hummer either. How would my way not count? And while I'm at it, I'll just use that same method for all food items. I'll put them on top of a gold bar and then park a Hummer on top of them and voila! I will OWN every "World's Most Expensive" food record that there is! World's Most Expensive Burger. World's Most Expensive Cheeto. World's Most Expensive Jolly Rancher. World's Most Expensive Churro. You name it, I'm gonna put a Hummer on it and go for the record!

I'm not sure if this guy has figured out some sort of loophole or something, but if he has, it's the most ridiculous loophole I've ever heard of. Diamonds aren't food! Why are they acting like they are? Why does this count? What am I missing? Guinness? Anyone? I'm listening!

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Friday, April 13, 2012

No Time For Bronchitis

I seem to be noticing a slight trend these days in the whole "man on the street interview" department. It seems that ever since Antoine Dodson graced us with his poetic words of wisdom when telling us to "Hide yo kids, hide yo wife and hide yo husband 'cause they're rapin' everrbody out here!" that the goal is to find the wackiest person to interview for the local evening newscast. And that appears to be exactly what occurred when Ms. Sweet Brown (I swear that's her name) was interviewed after her apartment building caught on fire. At least, I think that it's her apartment building. It's not overly clear to me. (She seems wacky enough that she might have fled her own dwelling even if it wasn't the one burning to the ground.) But what is clear is that she's pretty colorful. Seems like she'd make an entertaining neighbor. Check her out below. Click here if she doesn't show up.

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Caine's Arcade

This is one of the best things I have ever seen. I love the imagination of little kids. I also love it when I come across a little kid with ingenuity and determination and a real passion for whatever it is that the kid might be into at the moment. Caine Monroy is one of those kids. Over the summer, Caine went to work with his dad every day at his dad's used auto parts store in east LA. As a fan of those arcade games where you can win prizes, Caine set out to build his own arcade using his awesome imagination, a bunch of cardboard and a whole lot of packing tape. The only problem was that there wasn't a lot of foot traffic to his dad's store because most of the store's business had gone online. Enter a guy named Nirvan Mullick. Nirvan saw the awesomeness of Caine's arcade and asked permission from Caine's dad to make a short movie about Caine. Below is that movie. It's amazing. Simply amazing. If it doesn't play, click here.

I've watched this several times. And now I can almost watch it and not want to cry! When I was little, I loved the video games in arcades. I always dreamed of having my own arcade at home. Now that I'm a "grown up", I'm slowly building that arcade in my garage. (I'm up to three games! And I'm getting ready to put in planetary carpet that glows in the dark!) I know that sort of love for something that Caine has. He says at the end of the movie that he was proud of what he had made. He should be. It's awesome.

By the way, there's also a website and there's a fund set up for donations to a college fund for Caine. So far, it's over $100,000! Obviously, I'm not the only one who finds this whole thing incredibly touching and who finds Caine to be an exceptional individual. Check it out. You won't be sorry. Way to go, Caine!

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Still Not A Winner

Hey, guess what happened? The Mega Millions winner in Maryland came forward and guess what? I know this will shock you, but it turns out that it was NOT that possibly mentally ill woman who called herself Mirlande Wilson on the news, but who goes by Sheila Paraison on Facebook (for reasons that I still cannot ascertain). Shocking, I know!

Seriously, this woman has been going around for at least a week and telling
everyone that she won. Well, that was at first. Then it was that she won, but she hid the ticket at the McDonald's that she worked at. (How that McDonald's was not torn apart McNugget by McNugget is beyond me.) After that it was that it was in her house somewhere, but she couldn't find it. (For some reason, her 15-year old daughter had been asked about this and she responded that Mirlande/Sheila wouldn't let the kids (she has SEVEN of them) look for the ticket and the girl said she was crying because "it's a lot of money". Yes. Yes, it is. Sorry to say that you won't be getting a lot of money. Also sorry to say that your mom is a bit of a cuckoo bird.) I think after that it was in God's hands. (That didn't make any sense to me either, because God can't cash it in. Why would he have it?) And the worst part about that whole fiasco is that she had gone in with a bunch of her McDonald's co-workers to buy a bunch of tickets and basically said that she won, but that she wasn't sharing because she bought her ticket separately. Yeah, OK, then.

But yesterday it comes out that the winners have claimed their prize in Maryland and (spoiler alert!) it was not Ms. Wilson/Paraison. The winners were three
Maryland public school system employees who have chosen to remain anonymous. That's a little different than the woman who had been claiming that she won. Looking back, considering that she didn't win, the anonymous route probably would have saved her a little bit of humiliation. Well, that is, if she understood that she really didn't win.

See, she's still denying that she didn't win. According to the New York Post, she "...insisted yesterday that she didn’t lie when she told her lottery pool co-workers — and the world — that she had hit the Mega Millions jackpot." But...but...she didn't win. They didn't give her the money. And she was saying that she won...sooooooo....what now? I don't get it either. But after the lottery folks announced that these other three people had actually won (and apparently had the ticket, and now the money, to prove it), she said I don’t know who lied. I’m not the liar!" are.

Tell me something. What do you think that this woman was thinking was going to happen with this little story of hers? Did she think that the lottery people were just going to give her the money simply because she said that she won? I think that's why they make you actually show the ticket. And what about all of her co-workers at McDonald's? How did she think that this was going to go over with all of them? Can you imagine how tense things must be around that deep fryer these days? She's going to find herself minced up in one of those God-awful Snack Wraps one of these days I'd imagine. Just one more example of how I just don't get people. I don't get this crazy line of thinking. Oh, wait. That's right. She's crazy. Never mind. I got it. Carry on!

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