Tuesday, December 28, 2010

What I Have Missed on my Vacation (so far)

That Randy is a saint.
Randy is watching Trevor for us as we are in England for Christmas. While being here in Merry Olde, New York got hit with a blizzard. Funny enough this is the second blizzard that has hit New York while we have been in England. When we were here with my mom in 2007, Chuck and the pup had to face a blizzard.
Well, if you know the T-Monster, you know he doesn't like "weather" (perhaps the one family member more annoyed by winter than I am). Here is a picture of Trevor in the snow as he drug Randy around the block as quick as possible.
Since I know he doesn't like to poop in the cold, I can only imagine that he didn't do much in the blizzard.

This is 42nd Street the morning after. 42nd less than 2 block from Times Square - and nothing!
(picture credits to Randy Susovich)
As for us, we are having a fine time here. We watched a Wasps Rugby match. Saw lots of friends - Jane and Lisa made a great Christmas dinner (goose as well as turkey). We meet some new people (Ellen is charming), saw Barbara and Gareth, Laura and Dan came over for Christmas. Last night we went to dinner with Sam (a friend from New York) and his mum. She lives about 30 minutes away in Woking. We had her over for thanksgiving and she wanted to repay us. It was a fun night.
It's all good fun. Apparently we missed the snow blizzards on both ends and got through on the 36 hours when there were no problems. Here's hoping it stays that way for our return.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Scott and Ed entertain the troops

> Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange

Barbara and Jane (Wasp fans)

> Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange


Wasp's rugby

So this was our view of Wasps Rugby. It was great fun. And, surprise surprise, we knew a player. Of course he was from the other team. And we only know of him because he's a bit of a hunk that nudes up for calendars (to raise money for charity - so it is ogling for a good cause).

Gavin Henson.


Just like my friend Gavin, right.

All of us (sans Gareth) getting ready to go to the Rugby

Boxing day in shepperton

So this is outside Jane's new house. It is in the same little village, but on Manygate - a street a few blocks over. But she can still walk to the Thames and the pub (or downtown to get groceries - but the former is more important for some of her friends).

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Internet was down in our house last night! OMG!

Well, it turns out the hubbie is more addicted to the internet than I.
Because of a quirk of work, Eddie and I have had "always on, high-speed internet" since 1998. I was working for Epoch and was testing DSL when it first came out.
So we have gotten very used to having constant internet. It has been almost 13 years now that we have had it.
It was out last night.
Apparently someone knocked out Ethernet Cable out in the Condo Box Head yesterday - so we couldn't fix it from inside our apartment.
Ed was not happy Verizon was not sending out someone RIGHT THAT MINUTE. It was an emergency! So we were in the technological Dark Ages having to watch some DVD we had from Netflix (not even something STREAMING!!!!) .
Even laying in bed at midnight, Ed was still complaining that something had to be done about this. Waiting until the next day at 1PM was crazy. Crazy! What if he couldn't have stayed home? What if it was down until the Week-end?
The mind reels!
I joke, I was nearly as upset as Eddie, but I was surprised by his reaction.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Dogs' Letters to God


Dear God: Why do humans smell the flowers, but seldom, if ever, smell one another?


Dear God: When we get to heaven, can we sit on your couch? Or is it still the same old story?


Dear God: Why are there cars named after the jaguar, the cougar, the mustang, the colt, the stingray, and the rabbit, but not ONE named for a Dog? How often do you see a cougar riding around? We do love a nice ride! Would it be so hard to rename the 'Chrysler Eagle' the 'Chrysler Beagle'?


Dear God: If a Dog barks his head off in the forest and no human hears him, is he still a bad Dog?


Dear God: We Dogs can understand human verbal instructions, hand signals, whistles, horns, clickers, beepers, scent ID's, electromagnetic energy fields, and frisbee flight paths. What do humans understand?


Dear God: More meatballs, less spaghetti, please.


Dear God: Let me give you a list of just some of the things I must remember to be a good Dog.

1. I will not eat the cats' food before they eat it or after they throw it up.

2. I will not roll on dead seagulls, fish, crabs, etc., just because I like the way they smell.

3. The Litter Box is not a cookie jar.

4. The sofa is not a 'face towel'.

5. The garbage collector is not stealing our stuff.

6. I will not play tug-of-war with Dad's underwear when he's on the toilet.

7. Sticking my nose into someone's crotch is an unacceptable way of saying 'hello'.

8. I don't need to suddenly stand straight up when I'm under the coffee table

9. I must shake the rainwater out of my fur before entering the house - not after.

10. I will not come in from outside and immediately drag my butt across the capet.

11. I will not sit in the middle of the living room and lick my crotch.

12. The cat is not a 'squeaky toy' so when I play with him and he makes that noise, it's usually not a good thing.

P.S. Dear God: When I get to Heaven may I have my testicles back?


Monday, December 20, 2010

The Smell of Home

So there is a new restaurant on 9th Ave called Lime.
It is Mexican.
And buy that I mean LA Mexican. For example I had the East LA Burrito with Seasoned Ground Beef (I could have had chicken), salsa, rice and sauce and it was great.
But best, and I know this sounds odd, was the bag of chips.
It was a lunch bag full of greasy home made tortilla chips fresh out of the fryer. You know, the grease coming thru the bag.
And you opened it up and took a big whiff and it smelled just like home.
Seriously. I teared up a little. Nothing smells like LA to me more than a big bag of tortillas chips - freshly delivered. Homemade! (Not like Dorritos or something).
It was heaven.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Don't Ask Don't Tell Ends: A Christmas Miracle

This was a welcome and wonderful change. It allows men and women who love this country to be given the chance to serve it.

This Eric Alva. He was the first Marine injured in Iraq. He lost his leg fighting for our country. He didn't join to fight for gay rights or to make a statement.
Eric joined after 9/11 to serve the country he loved.
It isn't about gay rights. It isn't about benefits.
It isn't about quotas.
It is about having the bravest, and most honorable serve out country.
No gay person is going to join the military to get lucky or to look at people in the shower or anything like that.
People join the military only out of a commitment to serving the nation.
And I am proud that the country honors the service now, because that is what is important in this.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Tea Party Lie Count : 05 (Earmark Edition Senators John Thune R-SD and John Cornyn R-TX)

So, Senators John Thune (Liar - SD) and John Cornyn (Liar -TX), were on TV complaining about the Democrats Omibus Spending plan .. loaded with pork!
Including (per ABC News)....

"The bill is loaded up with pork projects, and it shouldn't get a vote," Thune said.

"I think this is an outrage," railed Cornyn.

But Thune and Cornyn have tens of millions of dollars for their own earmarks in the bill, including Thune's request for $8 million for B-1 bomber fleet maintenance and Cornyn's request for $1.6 million for the Texas Army National Guard Counter-Drug Task Force.

"How do you have any credibility on this?," asked ABC's Jon Karl.

"Because we're going to vote against the bill," said Cornyn. "This is the wrong way to do business."

"Senator, were you wrong when you put these earmarks in before," Karl asked.

"Karl, this is not just about earmarks," said Cornyn. "Earmarks are a symptom of wasteful Washington spending that the American people have said they want reformed. We agree with them, and that's why we will vote against this bill. But you're missing the story if you think it's just about earmarks. This is about a flawed process of sweetheart deals cut behind closed doors, and a big bill, a spending bill, dropped on the American people and on us on December the 14th, without adequate time to amend it and debate it and to reveal to the American people what is in it so they can cast their judgment."

"So I think -- I think that's to me the context. And we've said very clearly -- we voted for an earmark moratorium. We will abide by that, and we will reject any earmarks requested by us or anyone else, (emphasis mine: SM) because that's what the American people told us they want."


How bad was their hypocrisy? Fox News called them on it.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Lunch Room Question

Is it Biscotti or just stale bread....
Biscotti or just stale bread....
Biscotti or just stale bread....
okay bite it...
SCORE... Biscotti

Aren't the all the same?

So I have to wear nicer-than-jeans to my job. FYI, not a fan of nicer-than-jeans, because "shorts" doesn't technically fit into that category.
I have chosen Khakis. But the thing is I have tried Khakis from the 3 vendors below.
Surprisingly, they are all a very different. I say surprisingly because they are all owned by the same company, right. They should all be reasonably similar? No.
Banana Republic's are the fanciest - hence my least favorite. They also have a weird pocket cut that makes me feel (and probably look) hip-y. Guys should never look "hip-y".
Now the Gap's are the nicest slim fit. They have a nice wear about that fabric that seems right for Khakis - and they come back lovely from the cleaners.
So what's the problem? Buttons. I love button front pants until about my 3rd cup of coffee or diet soda. Then I hate them. You gotta hold everything up in the bath room, and it is a pain to open your pants to pee. And if you are a proud and out gay man who is trying to create a good impression in the work place -fumbling around at the stall is the last thing you want.
Now Old Navy's "Broken In" Khakis are great! Of course they run a little small, so you have to buy a size larger and longer than you need - but once you get over the embarassment of the size, they are fine. And cheap!
What's the problem. They come back from the cleaner's not so "broken in". You have to wear them a few hours until they scrunch back correctly. I feel badly that I know I am trying ever so hard to break down the very work the cleaners has done, but I like them scrunchy.
So there you have today's Khaki advice.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

All I Want For Christmas is the Pooping Dachshund Game

Why Furious?

Talk about your misplaced anger. Here is a quote, to which I say du'h.

Furious gay rights groups condemn FIFA chief Sepp Blatter

Activists say his joke about gays refraining from sex in Qatar during 2022 World Cup isn't a laughing matter

Why are gay rights groups furious? I mean, it is illegal to have homosexual sex in Qatar, so not so much a joke to say don't have sex in Qatar. It is also illegal to drink in public. Or for a man and woman to have sex in public. Possibly for a woman to drive (although there might be a waiver for foreigners like there is for US Military women).
So saying "Don't have gay sex" isn't a joke. It is just the law in Qatar, the people that voted to put athletic events in Qatar know it. I am not offended by the joke - or even the law. My desire to stay out of a Qatar-y jail overrides my need for gay sex in that particular country.
After all, UAE threw straight couples in the whoskhow for kissing on the beach - I get that doing the nasty with another boy isn't going to make them happy.
Eddie and I have both traveled to countries where gay sex is (or was) illegal. This includes India, Singapore, Laos, Zimbabwe and China. Sometimes we were there together and sometime separate, but we haven't had problems. Just don't flaunt it. Being nice and pleasant is going to chance more minds that bitching at the head of FIFA.
Although, look at him. That is one big slice of handsome man meat.

I'ld vs. I'd

I think when I was in school I would was contracted to I'ld. But now it goes to I'd (and has been for a long time).
Is my memory wrong - was it always I'd and not I'ld?

12 Member Big Ten Names Conferences

I copy from an NBC Sports Story...

Big Ten reveals division names, hilarity ensues

You GOTTA Love the Golden Globes

Best Picture Nominee: Burlesque!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Ho Ho Ho

Well, another week-end has come and gone.
Friday night I was thrilled that my big ass project was completed on time.
Sunday I was on a problem conference call for 2 hours, but it wasn't MY stuff's problem. Today we are in clean up mode.
Look you don't move 163,150 users and over 16,000 companies without a few bugs in the system. But generally we did great.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Eyewitness: Frosty awakening

I thought this pic was very pretty. Of course the Neppl's and Eisenberg's have too much snow already. But their own faults for living in minnesota, Wisconsin, and Rochester NY .  England doesn't usually look like this. 

Sent from my iPad

Friday, December 10, 2010

Brit Spotting...

So, my present employer started life as a Canadian Company but relatively quickly moved to a London Based Company. Even after the merger / purchase, it is a pretty British Company. Although technically headquartered in New York now.

The upshot of all this is we have quite a large contingent of rotating and semi-permanent citizens of ol’ Blighty here. And, much as in train spotting of yore or plane spotting of Frankfurt, one here may do a fair amount of Brit Spotting.

Of course, there are common species:

The flirtatious Twiggy does well here, albeit a bit supplanted by the more current “Twiggy with Enhancements”. Nearly always blond, they come in both the toothy and non-toothy varieties.

There is the Pub Lads. Nearly always boys they look like the bought suits from Marks and Spencers and the cufflinks from Next.

One step up are the Successful Pub Boys, who purchased the suit from Next and the cufflinks from Links.

Then there are the faux Transatlantics – both men and women. You can tell because their British style is aggressively hip and they are always discussing what the latest hip thing to do and see is in London and New York. And they are almost always obvious and 5 minutes unhip.

Then there are quite a few Real Transatlantics – both men and women. Their accents have naturally evolved into a nice meld, they are too sloppy to every really fit in back home. They are totally comfortable in both New York and London. A surprisingly large number of these are mixed parentage with ¼ to ½ Asian (which means Indian or Pakistani to a Brit), and of those about 90% are very very good looking.

Then today I spotted that rare bird, so common on the distant shore, but rarely seen this far away from Paddington Station – the frumpled, old flustered man who seems to shuffle, but moves remarkably fast without watching where he is going. When he says, what must assume is excuse me, it comes out, “ARMphry, tut-tut, old bah, mah coffee.”

And he continues his wanderings down the hallway

And yes, I know Ed Wynn is really American but Cor Blim'y Mar'E Pop'inz you get the idea.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

In the Olden Days of Yore

In the olden days of yore, your Survivor TV Show didn't suck...
Those days are gone.
In the olden days, Survivor had a modicum of association with surviving. People who could provide, start a fire, fish, catch the occasional Rat or Boar for food were hailed so others didn't starve. There was a decision - so and so sucks, but he brings fish home - so I like him.
But as Survivor has turned into the show that is all about laying around camp and bitching, it has become less interesting and more sophomoric. Type A Straight Men tend to be voted out early on. It is said they are a "threat", but in reality, this seems more about all the outcasts in school bonding together to steadily vote off the most popular kids. Kind of national Karma revisited via proxy.
Sometimes, mainly past tense, I get a visceral thrill from this. But I find more and more that rewarding insolence and laziness is more infuriating than any lingering emotional baggage I have that finds glee in kicking off the latest Jock.
I say bring back a healthy balance of personal skills and physical skills that are in demand around camp.
This season has been painfully obvious in it's rewarding of laziness. After stupidly burning up most of their food (I say stupid because the surround the fire to prevent rain from getting in - but they surrounded it with flammable food containers), the producers gave them more food. Of course they then vote off physical and pleasant people.
Now, Survivor, like Dancing with the Palin's before it, has lost my interest. Never to return. Sure it might be on in the background - I am not immune to Chase's charms (dumb and humpy is always nice), but I haven't been invested all season. That leads to not watching next season. (See Tom Delay followed by Bristol Palin).

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Whoops: I Misunderstood Just Like Michelle Bachman

Okay, Michelle Bachman is a ditz, but I was under the same impression she was when it came to unemployment insurance.
Which means (of course!) I don't think she should be blamed for an honest mistake. (smiley face)
What she said is what I thought... "As part of the compromise, the President wants to extend unemployment benefits for another 13 months," Bachmann said. "Unemployment benefits are already at a historical length of 99 weeks, and the President's request would push benefits to three years."
That is what I thought. Turns out that is wrong. What is does is extend the 99 week time period to users who lost their jobs, and continue this program through the next 13 months. So you will still get no more than 99 weeks - but the program won't expired next year. This makes sense because we are still in recession.

Sister Souljah Comparison (Again!)

I don't mean to hate on Chuck Todd - he is, in this case, simply parroting conventional wisdom.

*** A “West Wing” moment?
Did the White House get its -- take your pop culture pick -- Sorkin-like “West Wing” moment/“Sister Souljah” moment/”Dave” moment from President Obama’s news conference yesterday? “This notion that somehow we are willing to compromise too much reminds me of the debate that we had during health care,” Obama said regarding complaints over the tax-cut compromise he cut with Republicans. “This is the public-option debate all over again. So I pass a signature piece of legislation where we finally get health care for all Americans... But because there was a provision in there that they didn't get that would have affected maybe a couple of million people, even though we got health insurance for 30 million people and the potential for lower premiums for 100 million people, that somehow that was a sign of weakness and compromise.” He continued, “Now, if that's the standard by which we are measuring success or core principles, then let's face it, we will never get anything done. People will have the satisfaction of having a purist position and no victories for the American people.”
But, what crap is being spewed here! First of all, this is a classic Bait and Switch argument by the White House. (Which is funny that they pulled tactics for complaining about liberals from Karl Rove - but couldn't pull tactics to get legislation passed from Turd Blossom).
Sure, some people were pissed about the Public Option. So what. This isn't the same argument and lump both together to complain about it is lazy and childish.
But I am not comparing the two things, except that the President once again doesn't have the backbone to even fight for what HE promised during the campaign. Hey Pres, I didn't make the campaign promises, YOU DID.
But, I digress.
Here is why I am pissed about the tax cuts, past the REPEATED PROMISES YOU MADE WHEN LYING TO GET ELECTED. President George Bush, obstinate Republican, passed the tax cuts with 52 votes. You couldn't extend the middle class only tax cuts with 58 Senators. Why?
Instead of complaining that the supporters of yours are whiners, why don't you explain why you can't accomplish what George Bush did? You either lack the resolve or the intelligence. There is no other answer. Either you are dumber than George W. Bush (or your advisors are dumber than his were), or you don't stand up for your promises as much - your word is not your bond. Your word is not your bond - do you understand how appalling this is?
I am not stupid (although again,thank you for suggesting it - it is a possibility that I reject, much as I accept your rejection that you are George Bush in disguise) - I DO understand compromise. I understand how it works - a lot. I also understand that you don't compromise by folding at the beginning of negotiations.
I "get it" that you can't fix Don't Ask Don't Tell. I get that you won't even move on Defense of Marriage, or the Dream Act, or Immigration Reform or leave Afghanistan. I understand a lot. What I don't understand and CANNOT explain is the weak kneed response that Democrats couldn't hold a line that kept tax cuts on ONLY the first $1,000,000 of income. How did you lose that battle? You know how, you didn't fight for it.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Brenda Blethyn Rocked!!!

I just saw Haunted. I have to review it tomorrow, so I can't really say too much.

But let me say that Brenda Blethyn is freakin' amazing.

Brenda Blethyn was nominated for Oscars for "Pride and Prejudice" and "Little Voice". I didn't think she really deserved the nomination for "Little Voice", but she was wonderful wonderful tonight.

I have seen some famous actors stink up the stage (I'm looking at you Julianna Moore) - but Brenda Blethyn was stupendous.

Andreas Thorkildsen: Picker Upper

Politics, work, no sweet and low on floor 17 - they all get to me. And maybe they get to you... so a Little Andreas Thorkildsen will make it all better..
Andreas is a hard working Norwegian who I admire solely for his work ethic and fortitude.

He is the Javelin Tossers from China.
We were there in Beijing 2008 - for this picture!
He tends to change to his "lucky" shirt after he throws.
This is him this year at a Berlin Meet.

Obama Finally Gets a Persona

Monday, December 06, 2010

Merry Christmas from Eddie and Scooter

Selective Memory at it's Most Idiotic

Let us quote from a moment from the Republic Pledge to America (link).
We pledge to make government more transparent in its actions, careful in its stewardship, and honest in its dealings.
Now let's quote from Republican Party Senate Leader Mitch McConnell from Sunday's Meet The Press (link) about Julian Assange from Wikileaks.
Sen. Mitch McConnell: "I think the man is a high-tech terrorist. He’s done an enormous damage to our country, and I think he needs to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. And if that becomes a problem, we need to change the law.
No surprise, the loquacious Senator's quote is neither careful, nor honest nor transparent - despite the Republican Pledge.
Note to the Senate Minority Leader: A Terrorist is not whomever you don't like. A Terrorist is one that inflicts serious or fatal harm on civilians to support an armed uprising. A Terrorist is NOT someone who has done an enormous damage to our country. Else, Richard Nixon and the Watergate burglars would be Terrorists.
Adn changing the law in order to prosecute someone that you don't like violates, like, almost all of your pledge - as well common sense and the constitution.
You and the Government are NOT Royalty. You are NOT allowed to scream "off with their heads" every time someone pisses you off - even if NBC and all the other supplicant media lube up, bend over and allow you to spout crap willy nilly.

Understatement of the Year

Understatement of the year.
Bush got these damn thing through with 50 votes. The Democrats had 53 votes to give the 1st million earned an extension, but nothing beyond that.
And the whimpy wonder is going to say no dice.
Good Grief Charlie Brown!

Silly Slippery Slope

Someone is complaining about a new theme park in Kentucky - essentially "Old Testament Land". The state isn't building it, but they will get job creation tax breaks, so someone is bitching.
Here I say, enough is enough.
I don't think this should cause any problems. Unless they show gays in rainbow shirts dancing to Donna Summer getting stoned - or King David sexing up his Military Commander's wife in Adultery - then consigning him to die in battle. Well, I don't think they will show either of those things and so I think this is fine.
It is a "theme park", not a church. For goodness sake, people didn't bitch that Harry Potter world would promote Wicanism
Ease up gang.
Plus, of course, I want to see the animals on the Ark - but they are only showing "younger" animals - and I want to know where the older giraffes go. Because I think having a retirement home for older giraffes would be totally cool.
AND... It will show the real size of a "cubit". (Bill Cosby joke that is probably way over everyone's head but my and Ed's parents..).

Sunday, December 05, 2010

.. but the Palm Lives On

Well, we did sell the Desert House, but the Christmas Palm lives on. Mickey put it up on Orlando Ave in Los Angeles, just north of Beverly - where it can live out its live every Christmas season bring joy and warm to all the little dogs. And, of course, guide Santa to our house.
wait a minute...
does this mean Mickey and Gavin will get our Santa presents....
maybe I didn't think this entirely through.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

They shouldn't have me at work at 8AM

They shouldn't have me at work at 8AM on a Saturday to watch paint dry...
I mean wait for queue'd request process through a backed up data queue.

Good God: These People Are Crazy 2

This can't be an on-going feature - my brain can't handle it, but let us take a look at Michele Bachmann's Email Alert...
From Her E-Mail and WebSite:

Time for Attorney General Eric Holder to Resign

The Wikileaks debacle is the latest proof that Eric Holder has no understanding of the dangerous times we live in. His ineptness, as head of the Department of Justice, is putting our nation in a vulnerable position.

Earlier this week, the Wikileaks website jeopardized our nation’s security and diplomacy by releasing hundreds of thousands of U.S. State Department documents. The same site put our troops at risk when it released thousands of classified U.S. military documents in July. As far back as March, the Pentagon declared Wikileaks to be a threat to national security. Meanwhile, the Attorney General, our nation’s chief law enforcement officer, has been busy cracking down on dozens of websites that sold things like counterfeit purses. Eric Holder simply has the wrong priorities. This assumes that the US Attorney General can shut down a foreign web site. Sorry - that is illegal and the US Attorney General can't do it. His office is also charged with US Websites that are illegal - counterfeit goods or not. Now if you want to take your crazy pants censorship to China or Russia where they illegally attack websites like Google - you can.

During his tenure as Attorney General, Holder short-circuited the interrogation of the underwear bomber by ordering that the terror suspect be given Miranda rights within the first hour of questioning.As per the law. Also, we found out where he was trained, where he flew from, who paid for his terror plot and responded by predator drone against them. Giving him his legally required Miranda rights hurt nothing. Holder’s use of civilian trials for terror suspects proved to be a failure last month when a civilian jury acquitted a man on 284 of 285 counts. Yet on the 1 count that he was found guilty on - he was sentenced to a longer sentence than ANY of the military tribunals have done - 20 years. Furthermore, the Attorney General said even he was found innocent, we would continue to hold him indefinitely. I think this is wrong, but it should have pleased her.
This was after a judge refused to allow the testimony of a key prosecution witness, even though our military had captured the suspect after a gunfight in Pakistan and linked him to deadly bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa. The judge used military rules in the refusing the testimony.

Eric Holder has also had a slew of lesser problems, like his outspoken criticism of Arizona’s immigration law before he had even read the law -same as every other Attorney General Democrat or Republican - the Feds believe that immigration law is a federal duty - as stated in the Constitution - which Ms. Bachman quotes regularly. , his dropping of charges in the New Black Panthers voter intimidation case -due to a complete lack of evidence beyond two fat white blowhards and yelling "fire" over and over again, and his failure to investigate fraud allegations and the misuse of taxpayer dollars in the recent Pigford claims settlement.

The time has come for Eric Holder to step down as Attorney General of the United States. As a member of Congress and a mother of five children, I am concerned about the very real threats facing our country. We need a chief law enforcement officer who understands those dangers and knows how to respond. So far legally and effectively - not sure what you want.

Oh Good God - These People are Crazy

I got this from Townhall My comments in bold:

The only thing that pisses me off more than Obama are Idiots that make me defend him.

From Townhall Mail
Sadly for this great country of ours, it's pretty darn hard to point out even a few—if any—Obama administration foreign policy successes since taking the White House nearly a full two years ago.

In fact, the successes that most reasonable people would agree on, such as ongoing Predator drone strikes on al Qaeda and the Taliban in the Pakistani tribal areas, are basically just continuations of the policies of the George W. Bush administration. I don't think you can speak for reasonable people. But, if by "reasonable people" you are mean war mongering liars, then you can add illegal strikes on Taliban in Yemen. New TSA procedures. Foiled terrorists attacks in Detroit, New York and Portland Oregon. A surge in Afganistan.

In listing flagging policies, it's hard to know where to begin. Oh go on... try!

For example, there has been no progress on halting Iran's runaway nuclear or ballistic missile programs. As it stands today, the ayatollahs will be atomic before you know it; an Iranian intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that can reach us is not far off either.Re: Iran - same as Bush. Around Iran... Just this week - Obama, our NATO allies AND Russia agreed to a joint missile defense against possible Iranian missiles. Re: the "ICBM" - turns out that they don't have a missile or the technology. The missile they have from Russian now is not capable of carrying a warhead.

North Korea detonated a nuke, launched a long-range missile, proliferated nuclear know-how to the likes of Burma and sank a naval corvette of our South Korean ally with the loss of some 40 lives. Under Bush! All but the Corvette was under Bush not Obama.

Despite repeated mashing of the "reset button" with Russia, Moscow continues to steamroll Washington, building a nuclear reactor for Iran, selling arms and weapons technology to Syria and Iran, signing a nuclear agreement with Venezuela and publicly honoring members of a recently nabbed U.S.-based spy-ring. Actually they are acting just like an independent nation. Duh. They have also agreed to a new missile defense shield with NATO (something GW couldn't get), given us details on Iran's Nuclear Program (something that needs - I don't know - a working relationship with Iran to get).

China has been equally unwieldy for the administration, continuing its unprecedented military build-up while disadvantaging U.S. firms with trade barriers such as inhibiting market access and maintaining an undervalued currency. Sucks yes. But sucked with Bush as well, and every President before him.

Venezuela is a growing problem. Under President Hugo Chavez, it is starting a "civilian" nuclear program with Russia's help A "Civilian" nuclear program! Oh my, as allowed by international law since it signed the Non Proliferation Treaty? The same type of "civilan" nuclear program that Brazil and Argentina have (with France and Britan)? Oh my! and becoming the Latin American operating base for Hezbollah and the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Qods Forces. Really? What has Hezbolla and the Iranian Islamic Revolution Guard Corps done in Latin America?

And so on.

Despite all of Obama's promises, stemming from the 2008 presidential campaign that he would deliver a better foreign policy than his Republican opponent, he hasn't restored, much less advanced, America's position in the world.
Pulled out of Iraq.
Hasn't started even 1 new war (by this time Bush had started one he forgot to finish and was planning another).
Restored a sucky relationship with South Korea (courtesy of Kim Jon Il's being an asshole - but whatever).
Fixed a relationship with Japan.

Indeed, we may be in retreat. ..
Indeed, Martians may be landing just across the street...
Indeed, Glee has gay kisses on...
Indeed, Sarah Palin is on 2 reality shows...
Indeed, the world as we know it may be coming to an end...

Friday, December 03, 2010

Ahhh.. Kenneth Turan - Thy Heart Misses Vous

Kenneth Turan is the LA Times Movie reviewer. I had forgotten how much I loved him until I read the Black Swam review today.
Here are some rather fun quotes:

This tale of feathered ambition starring Natalie Portman andMila Kunis as dueling ballerinas is not just any kind of trash, it's high-art trash, a kind of "When Tutu Goes Psycho" that so prizes hysteria over sanity that it's worth your life to tell when its characters are hallucinating and when they're not.

In fact, the only problem with calling "Black Swan" sensationalistic and over the top is that it makes this shameless shotgun marriage of "The Red Shoes" and Roger Corman sound like more fun than it is.

The director here is the earnest Darren Aronofsky, and his trademark sledgehammer style makes any kind of enjoyment difficult. As he showed in "The Wrestler" and earlier, this is someone who believes in bludgeoning audiences into submission. When you experience ballet the Aronofsky way, you count yourself lucky that the dancers don't have easy access to staple guns.

Trevor's New Crush

This is Jeff. He is the son of Tony and Teresa (Ed's cousins). He and his sister stayed at our house while Mom and Dad stayed with work at the Waldorf.
Trevor got a crush on Jeff. This was right after Cameron (Katherine's daughter left). So Trevor has been smothered in affection.

1 to 20

1 to 20
Number of Contractors Hired to Finish Project to Number of Permanent Employees Promoted to Job Role that Consists Entirely of Saying "No"

Well As Long As We Are on Cricket

Well, as it turns out, Mitchell Johnson (from the Reuters warm up picture below) is a Cricket hottie.
Go figure... A Cricket hottie.
Anywho, since my honey is a cricket fan, I thought I would add Mitchell.
Of course, Eddie is a England fan first - but he can root for Mitchell as well every so often bowl.

Cricket Bowlers (Pic for Ed)

Australia's Mitchell Johnson (L) bowls during a cricket training session, ahead of their second Ashes test against England at the Adelaide Oval December 2, 2010. The second Ashes test will start on December 3.
REUTERS/Mick Tsikas

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Best Rivalry in College Football (Says Me, that's who)

When you have 2 great schools in 1 great city - you have an amazing rivalry. Now, even when we have an off year or three - it is still amazing. You have to go and see.
The Orange County Register (home of too many Trojans) printed the 10 best UCLA and USC jokes. They are funny enough to reprint (and to change the schools for your own use).

10. UCLA JOKE: What does a UCLA fan do when his team has won the BCS championship? He turns off the PlayStation.

10. USC JOKE: One morning, the seven dwarfs go to work in the mine. When Snow White delivers their lunches, she finds there has been a cave-in, and there's no sign of the dwarfs. Tearfully, Snow White shouts down the mine shaft, "Hello! Is anyone there? Can you hear me Sneezy, Sleepy, Grumpy, Dopey, Doc, Happy and Bashful?" A voice floats up from the bowels of the mine: "Lane Kiffin is a great football coach."
"Thank goodness," says Snow White, "at least Dopey's still alive!"

9. UCLA JOKE: The Rolling Stones are playing at the Rose Bowl next week. They're 10-point favorites.

9. USC JOKE: A USC and a UCLA fan, fighting side-by-side, were captured during World War II and sentenced to die by firing squad. The enemy commander asked the USC fan if he had any last requests. The Trojan said, "I want to hear 'Conquest' one last time." The UCLA fan was then asked if he had a last request. "Yes," he said, "shoot me first."

8. UCLA JOKE: What's the difference between a former UCLA football player and a large pizza? A large pizza can feed a family of four.

8. USC JOKE: What's the difference between a litter of puppies and USC fans? Eventually puppies grow up and stop whining.

7. UCLA JOKE: What's the difference between a UCLA football player and a dollar? You can get four quarters out of a dollar.

7. USC JOKE: A guy in a bar leans over to the guy next to him and asks, "Wanna hear a USC joke?" The guy next to him replies, "Look, fella, I'm 6 feet tall, 200 pounds, and I'm a USC grad. The guy next to me is 6-2, 225, and he's a USC grad. The big dude next to him is 6-5, weighs 250, and he's a USC grad. You still wanna tell that joke?" The first guy replies: "Not if I'm gonna have to explain it three times."

6. UCLA JOKE: What do medical marijuana and UCLA football have in common? They both get smoked in bowls.

6. USC JOKE: How many USC football players does it take to change a light bulb? Just one, but he gets four academic credits for it.

5. UCLA JOKE: What do you call a Bruin in a BCS bowl game? A referee.

5. USC JOKE: Did you hear about the fire in the USC football dorm that destroyed 20 books? The real tragedy was that 15 hadn't been colored yet.

4. UCLA JOKE: USC is playing UCLA at the Rose Bowl, and the Bruins have a first down with 3 minutes left in the half. A UCLA fan sets off a firecracker, and USC, thinking it's the end of the half, runs off the field. Three plays later, UCLA punts.

4. USC JOKE: What happens when Lane Kiffin takes Viagra? He gets taller.

3. UCLA JOKE: A security guard at the Rose Bowl notices two UCLA fans climbing a fence. The guard grabs them by the collars and says "Now just get back in there and watch the game until it finishes."

3. USC JOKE: If you see a USC fan on a bicycle, why should you swerve to avoid hitting him? It might be your bicycle.

2. UCLA JOKE: What do you get when you cross Rick Neuheisel with a groundhog? Six more weeks of bad football.

2. USC JOKE: What does the average USC football player get on his SAT? Drool.

1. UCLA JOKE: Did you hear that UCLA's football team doesn't have a website? They can't string three "Ws" together.

1. USC JOKE: Four alumni were climbing a mountain one day. Each was from a different Pac-10 school and proclaimed to be the most loyal fan. They argued all the way up the mountain, and finally as they reached the top, the Cardinal hurled himself off the mountain and shouted "This is for Stanford!" Not wanting to be outdone, the Oregon alum threw himself off the mountain yelling, "This is for the Ducks!" Seeing this, the Bruin shouted "This is for everyone" - and pushed the Trojan fan off the mountain.

Happy Hanukkah

On this, the first day of Hanukkah - let's say Happy H-Day to the Jewish People. Let's start with Jake (Mother was Jewish).

And here is an interesting story of Jews in the American Southwest...

New Mexico's Crypto-Jews

A small Hispano group of Sephardic Jews in northern New Mexico may be one of the oldest groups of practicing Jews in North America, dating back to the early Spanish settlers of Jewish descent that were exiled from Spain as a result of the Edict of Expulsion and/or forcibly converted to Catholicism as Conversos or New Christians. Since reverting to Judaism or even Judaic customs and practices was punishable by torture and, usually, death, many fled to the northwestern frontier of the Spanish Empire in the "New World," now the American Southwest, for fear of being brought before the Spanish Inquisition. Only outwardly Catholic, these forced converts maintained Jewish practices and customs in secret, hence the name, "Crypto-Jews." The subject of recent academic study,[85] some of New Mexico's Crypto-Jews have begun to return to normative Judaism in recent years, through conversion.[86]

A recent genetic study has shown that many Hispanos of the American Southwest are indeed descended from Anusim (Sephardic Jews who were forcibly converted to Roman Catholicism). Michael Hammer, a research professor at the University of Arizona and an expert on Jewish genetics, said that fewer than 1% of non-Semites, but more than four times the entire Jewish population of the world, possessed the male-specific "Cohanim marker" or Cohen Modal Haplotype (which in itself is not necessarily carried by all Jews, but is prevalent among Jews claiming descent from hereditary priests), and 30 of 78 Latinos tested in New Mexico (38.5%) were found to be carriers.[87] DNA testing of Hispanic populations also revealed between 10% and 15% of men living in New Mexico, south Texas and northern Mexico have a Y chromosome that traces back to the Middle East. In 2008, moreover, a gene linked to a virulent form of breast cancer that is typically found only in Jewish women was discovered in a cluster of Hispanic Catholic women in Southern Colorado, many of whom trace their family's roots to northern New Mexico [88] Curiously, a Spanish dialect, so-called "Mountain Spanish", that is spoken by many of the old families of Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado - and chiefly only among themselves - appears to be Ladino, or Judezmo, a hybrid language of Old Spanish, Portuguese and Hebrew with sprinklings of Arabic, Greekand other languages, depending on the geographic region of the speakers or their ancestors.[89]

Intermarriage with local Pueblo, Navajo and Apache Indigenous Peoples has undoubtedly occurred since the 16th century, so it would not be inaccurate to describe these Jews as racially or ethnically mixed "Native American Jews," or "Hispano-Indian Jews," though it is doubtful any, as yet, self-identify as such. Furthermore, there is not yet any scholarly work and therefore no consensus about the extent to which, if any, these individuals' physical resemblance trends more toward either the Indigenous Peoples of the region or classic or modern Sephardim, or if it generally lies somewhere in between. Amongst themselves, they still use (and presumably prefer) the term, "Sefarditas."