Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy Snapping

Madeira Fireworks 2010 & 2011 Guinness World Record

Into the New

Eminem - "Not Afraid"

To Thine Own Self Be Shhhh

Me and My Big Mouth

Uh oh. Someone's been bad this year...and the year before, and...... But I digress. Yes, the last flog for "Bad" people and places and things of 2010 is All-About-Me. I've taken myself to the woodshed for a good ole' flog for being unable to STFU on the internet regarding foolish things, and in "real life" doing my best to stay off the phone because I'm tired of talking. This past year I've let my fingers do the dirty deed for me and, good grief, do I have a tendency to write the most absurd drivel in the strangest places - such as gossip forums, blogs, and social networking sites. No doubt I've given a few readers a laugh or 50 if they weren't scratching their heads in confusion over why on earth I was writing whatever it was that might come back to bite me in the arse.

I did have a penchant for comedy when I entered this world, and certainly knew how to make people laugh when acting or bored in school, whispering one-liners to nearby classmates, which, of course, made me very popular with my teachers. But lately I've been on a roll of blah-blah-blahing...and thank God I only Tweet for this blog or else I'd be TMI'ing in the same fashion of Ashton and Demi.

Some might say I'm being too hard on myself; people share the oddest details about their lives every day on Facebook and Twitter - and personal blogs. I'm only human and prone to err from time to time, right? All of that is true and I forgive myself for some of the mischief I've created. I do know how to recover from a public embarrassment and carry on. I've been doing it all of my life. When you are constantly on stage in one form or another, there will be times when one bungles their lines or drops a key prop. And I've been out on a public limb one way or another most of my life.

In fact, have I written about the amazing experience I had with...... Shhhhhhhhhhh


Thursday, December 30, 2010


Duran Duran - "Too Much Information"

Tweet Me Once, Tweet Me Twice

Twitter, you ask? On the 2010 "Bad" list? Yes indeed. Why? After all, a tweet yesterday in New Jersey saved a life. Now, that's a worthwhile use of the service. If only most twitters were that important many of us wouldn't waste our time tweeting our latest trip to the bathroom, or twittering endlessly over absolutely nothing. Isn't it getting to be a bit too-too much information? Did we really need to see the visual tweet Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore posted from their bed together a few months ago? I mean, c'mon...we all know you two's are still in lurve. (Well, at least they made it look like it following all of those embarrassing adultery accusations against Ashton.) And Demi, oh dear, your glasses looked so school-marmish! The sheets were a nice fuzzy golden colour, though, and - wait! What am I writing? Did I have to see that tweet? John and Yoko they are not but they may have been trying to give domestic peace a chance.

Sigh. You get what I mean? I know too much about nothing and more and more are knowing and showing too much about nothing, and it's become a sizzling-hot part of our culture. What could possibly replace Twitter in the future except inserting a micro camera chip into our foreheads to take the world with us on our daily adventures.

Actually, such an idea is not far off. Reality Tweet-Wii is probably right around the corner.

Okay, now if you'll look down and to your right, you'll see a "Tweet" button. Please tweet this post ASAP because it's very, very important info that must be shared.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wake-Up Music for Previous Post

Hoobastank - "Face the Music"


Over the last few years this once-popular social networking site has responded to the Facebook and MySpace influx with alarming desperation through allegedly scamming their paid customers. I have to write "allegedly" despite the fact that I became one of their "alleged" scam-ees. One only has to run a mild I-Net search to find multiple personal complaints tucked-in with a current class-action lawsuit brought on by many who have not only been unwillingly billed on an expiring "Gold Membership," but also discovered that their personal information was provided to third-parties without their knowledge or permission. Or so the lawsuit claims. Ahem.

If you are or have been one of customer's, at one time or another over the last two years, you may have noticed an odd charge on your credit or debit card from a variety of companies to which you never subscribed, only to learn that you had somehow (according to the third-party) clicked a link while minding your own biz on the Classmates site that provided the third-party service to you on a "trial" basis with no follow-up confirmation of your participation. Naturally, you had no idea you were in a "trial" period for anything; thus, you failed to op-out of whatever the service entailed and were then automatically charged. When tracking the issue, you then realized the ultimate source led back to whom/which/that provided your credit card info to their sneaky little partners via that freaky little "click." 

How to rectify this problem? There are several ways. The first hint is: one way to know whether or not a company is aware that something is amiss is when you have contacted the service, requested a refund, canceled the service, and the hapless customer rep didn't hassle you at all and immediately arranged for your refund with no questions asked. Beyond this info, I humbly leave it all up to you.

Getting out of the third-party trap of Classmates' dire desperation to remain in business was easy. Dealing with Classmates directly to combat their own "automatic renewal" policy, or to even close your free or paid account, is akin to asking your bank to loan money to you when you have no collateral, a job, or any form of income. One receives the classic "it's in our Terms of Service that we don't provide refunds" response when an "automatic renewal" has been charged to your credit card when you know you had hit the "Manual" renewal button when you signed-up for just a year. Odd that many of the complaints I've read online involve those who not only clicked "Manual", but returned to confirm, only to discover their account had been switched to "Automatic." And, if you try to locate their TOS, be ready for a journey through a confusing maze of links, and be sure to have a magnifying glass with you.

It's a nightmare to fight them. They don't provide an 800 number to discuss problems. When one deals with them via online "support" a robotic, possibly automated "first responder" email will remind you that it's all your fault and you will not receive a refund, although they'll be happy to ensure not taking your money next year when it's renewal time again. Several "real exchange with a human" emails later, you contact your bank to handle the dispute. You wait. Paperwork finally arrives full of copious copies of their TOS and your bank tells you they can't do anything about it and the debit will remain. Ahhh, but if you were fortunate, as was I, to have a copy of an email where Classmates wrote that despite not providing refunds, they just happened to have a promotion going on at that very moment where they would knock all but $10.00 off the renewal and everyone would live happily-ever-after - you have a shining moment of "Gotcha!"

Such an odious offer is proffered as they are quite determined to keep some part of your money for a service/account you no longer want or use or ever intend to view again  Thus, based on their little offer to me, my bank found it suspect and, in the end, I won. Others haven't been as fortunate. Although many customer's changed their credit cards and bank accounts solely to avoid the continual unauthorized debits, it seems that the money trail will lead to your new card or account and once more you've been charged. Classmates should go into the debt collection business if they are that desperately savvy. Honest. This happens. Just ask your bank.

No doubt it's hard out there to keep a biz running when free social networks have taken your customers away. The issue is: don't scam us to stay alive. It's time to face facts, "Classmates." You've lost your base. It's in your face, like a book you don't want to read. There's no space for you, so why not move on and take your greed with you.

" " = Big Sore Loser of 2010.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Imperial March

The Dark Evader

Dick Cheney/Halliburton

Yes, I know. Thus far TDFB list looks like a deja-vu from 2003 - 2008 in particular. But that's not the case. We've been inundated via most mainstream news outlets in 2010 with the new faces, the new disasters, that a few of the underlying cancers in the U.S. have quietly metastasized with nary a mention other than late-night comedians poking a few jabs at Rush and Cheney during a slow news cycle. Well, this list should serve as a reminder that while the Christine O'Donnell witches brew-hah-hah and Tony Hayward's entitled "I want my life back" remark fueled a twitter of rage or laughter from the masses, quiet deals continued to play out on the international stage casino when no one was looking. And, as is often the way it goes on floating casinos in non-regulated waters, someone ends up completely screwed while others slip away in the darkness on small river rafts to solid ground without a sound.

One thing I can write with certainty is that the majority of Americans knew very little, if anything at all, regarding the following linked article. What is provided assures the placement of Mr. Chee-ney and friends on my "Bad" list for 2010.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Drug-Addled Gas Bag

"The Big Fat Flog"

Rush Limbaugh

This is a man for every year's "Worse" list. Glenn Beck overshadowed his public lunacy this year, yet I place him on my "Bad" list in a prominent position due to his consistent moral decay. He continues his inflammatory rants year-after-year, bellowing in our ears all of his uneducated and highly medicated shock-knocks toward everything and everyone that could be a lightning rod for the millions of listeners who support the non-stop blathering, hypocritical loud-mouth. Out-on-a-Limb-bah-humbug, this rushing lush remains at the center of what serves the division of the Dis-united State of America with race-baiting, equal-opportunity hating, all in the name of high ratings with a mind-boggling salary that could, in one brief moment, wipe-out half of the poverty in America for at least a month to jump-start the economy he claims is a mess because a certain someone of color is at the helm.

Aside from spewing general intolerance, the man who claims he isn't racist has said the following:

To an African American female caller: “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.”

The NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practice robberies.”

Just a few gems.......

The Low Road of 2010

This is the time when all media outlets declare their "Worst People of the Year" lists where we glance through the often funny yet sometimes cringe-worthy moments of absolute insanity of one sort or another in either a public figure's life, or a collective group's ghastly decisions. The same names and groups tend to share the shameful spotlight with the commentator or writer's unique spin on each as the primary differentiation between such lists. I've already read several serious as well as amusing lashings on the usual suspects.

Most of the chosen ones that/who share the year-end dishonor deserve to be placed in the town square for a public booing - and worse. Thus, rather than become yet another part of the choir, albeit an alto, I'd like to dig around for the lesser-known evil-doers this week as we count our way down to Friday night's revelry at the strike of midnight.

To get the basics out of the way, however, I'll name a few of the Big Bad's and then get on with it.

BP/Tony Hayward ("I want my life back.")
The Tea Party
Glenn Beck
The GOP filibuster's
Pat Robertson (accusing Haiti's earthquake on Haiti via a pact with Satan to be freed from French control)
LeBron James (for leaving Cleveland to get some Heat in Florida)
Tiger Woods (for cheating on his wife to get more heat in and out of Florida)
All of those ultra-conservative Beeches of my very first post on this blog

There's more, much more. Nevertheless, the drums of public ire tend to be focusing in those directions. If one is not politically progressive, then it's just one name for them: Obama. Obama. Obama. Click your heels three times and the whole world will be back in Kansas in shades of black and white once more following that awful tornado, and Toto will be licking your chinny-chin-chin with tail-wagging delight.

Now that you have a taste of what's to come (or is already out there for flogging), let's follow my own Yellow Brick Road to stomp on the unsung jeer-worthy for the departure of 2010.

Before I begin, a few cups of tea with sugar and cream are required for my brain to find its way into the Sins of the World.

To be continued.......

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Serious Moment About Making a Difference

To continue the Christmas message, I've found an old interview with John and Yoko that could have been recorded yesterday in its substantive significance, and the repetitive cycle in so many countries we have not yet overcome. Warning: This video contains disturbing visuals. If you can, allow this reminder to set something in motion within your heart and mind regarding what you believe you can do to take even one step forward for peace, as daunting a prospect it is.........

Friday, December 24, 2010

When You're Alone (without shrieking girls)

Elvis - "Blue Christmas"

Music All Around

Throughout Christmas day, if you're looking for a diversion from festivities with too many screaming children running amok, or need a respite from time-to-time, TDFB will be posting a variety of seasonal videos of unique and classic performances.

Check in or subscribe to the RSS feed for updates.

To everyone taking a little time off, enjoy your Christmas or general holiday!

Oh Woe & Glee

'Tis the day before Christmas
and all through the land
people are scurrying
to buy that last brand
of whatever it is they feel they must buy
to make their friends happy and merry and high.

For those who are struggling to find what to wear
in the middle of snowflakes or under the sun's glare
remember that a vacation is to give you a break
and not a new reason for another headache.

If you're home and are cooking for pleasure or guests
make sure to include a good night's rest
lest you work yourself over too much for the joy
of being the Top Chef who brought home the grand toy.

'Tis the day before Christmas
and we have been taught
to be laughing while mapping our New Year's thoughts
a full week before fireworks stream in the sky
to welcome another reason to try -
    to lose some weight or make more money
    or meet our soulmate and call them 'honey'
    or change old behaviours that caused so much harm
    to our once pleasant outlook that was filled with true charm.

The season is often a time of despair
for many who lost their souls on a dare
while others are truly in their own heaven
and look on this time full of love for their brethren.

However you feel at this time of the year
whether woeful or sad
or filled with good cheer
it's a time for knowing that you know
your best friend is glowing cuz' they're a ho-ho-ho.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good flight!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Winds of Shame

Amazing! The START treaty has been ratified - today. Did I actually watch President Obama sign the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” into law this morning? Be still my heart. Action in Washington is afoot. Before many of us jump for joy at this news, there are a few wrinkles on the well-trimmed cuffs of Mr. Obama’s success which might see a steam roller rather than a steam iron in the coming year. Mitch McConnell has gleefully announced that his primary focus between 2011 and the elections in 2012 will be to repeal every single law, every forward movement, the Obama administration has created in the last two years. Healthcare Reform is at the top of his hit-list. Such a piss that nay-saying bag of wind is.

I have an idea. Well, it’s not really my original idea; however, let’s consider proactive yelling as a way in which to legally smack  down the smarmy politico’s whose only desire is to regain power in 2012. Yep. Direct yelling and heavy media coverage. You know, the “squeaky wheel gets more grease” kind of thing. It works at times, if for nothing else than to keep TV lights burning on the issue. Shame those smug mockers back into their lockers.

For example, a group of 9/11 First Responders, furious over former doctor (and now GOP senator) Tom Coburn’s threatened blockage of a bill to provide additional health benefits to the ill and dying heroes of that day, marched directly to the senator’s office yesterday and, with media lights blaring, made a point to directly confront the man on his immoral position. Of course, Coward-Burn didn’t appear at his door, just like he didn’t appear on the floor of the Senate when traditional legislative debate had been in session regarding the issue. You see, Mr. Coburn claims he’ll block passage of the bill because it “hadn’t been through a legislative hearing process.” Ironic, isn’t it, that whenever a rep-resent-ative claims there is a technical problem with an issue they are clearly against, they often were absent at the onset of debate. It’s a bit late for such an excuse, don’t you think? All anyone can say about this man’s position is that it stinks.

Let’s get back on point with the agenda of McConnell and fiends. No typo, there. I say kick all of these sorry examples of humans to the corner with their buddy Johnny McPain who no longer is sucking his wittle thumb but has replaced it with lemons. Wow. That guy’s utterly pissed these days, isn’t he? If he was upset on the day the DADT was repealed, now that it’s been sealed into law, today must be his Worse. Day. Ever.


Oh, why am I spending so much time writing about these fools when it’s merely days before a happy holiday filled with toys for the kids, parties with eggnog, aunt Kate’s dry fruit cake and many more surprises of one sort or another. Shouldn’t I find a new group to flog? Aren’t more important events worthy of the woodshed? Politics can make the mind dull and create a surly mood.

I’ve got a good one for you to pass the time. It’s nice and juicy. What do you think about Lindsay Lohan’s latest snafu? Good grief, withdrawal can be a beech.  If you haven’t heard, while still in rehab, she allegedly beat on one of the rehab staffers. She may have to go back to jail for another 60 seconds. Now, that’s the type of story we can sit back and rehash with friends without explaining amendments and all of that weighty stuff to fill up our heads before we fill up our stomachs in the days ahead.

The truly sad part of the above is that Lindsay has enough health insurance to cover the cost of the stay of further hallucinations in a treatment facility, whilst others who have given their lives to save victims of fires and terrorism are left penniless, bereaved, and barely breathe without a deep-seated life-threatening wheeze.

(Update: The 9/11 bill passed the Senate, albeit a "scaled-down" version.)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Some Bullshit Happening Somewhere


Checking In and Out

No major flogging today. There are too many political personages to take to the woodshed and I don't have the room or energy to look into their deadly eyes, or the excitement of the few who like the end of a whip.

Meanwhile, as I always suggest, the archives here offer many subjects to digest.

Will be back sooner than driblets and snippets.


Monday, December 20, 2010

True Inspiration

Progress is Happening NOW

(Keep in mind who Cares and who Doesn't)
- performed  by max security prison inmates -

The Three Scrooges

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, except for the likes of John-the-Pain McCain and his GOPper buddies who continue to stall the continuation of the Reagan-powered START treaty with Russia which, until now, always received bipartisan support. Joining McCain to vote against the latest elements in nuclear disarmament is the ever-handy Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and his little side-whip, Jon Kyl. Oh, these guys just can't handle "lame duck" luck that is gathering support for most of what's on the docket before the GOP jumps the couch in January.

Did you see or hear dear John's jovial tone over the DADT repeal? The success of DADT’s passage will always remain for McCain as “a very sad day.” Really, John? Why? What’s so sad about brave soldiers having the weight of lying or hiding lifted from their shoulders as they toil to protect our country? Do you fear a breakout of rainbow flags and Gay-Pride parades across military camps? Hah! Such a flagrant display would be true “camp.”

In 2006, the future presidential hopeful senator communicated a completely opposite view whistling through his not-yet-fixed dentures on the issue. "The day that the leadership of the military comes to me and says, 'Senator, we ought to change the policy,' then I think we ought to consider seriously changing it," was his song and prance.

Well, he must have a waxy build-up in his ageing ears because both Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Muller, released statements on Saturday expressing approval of the Senate's historic vote to repeal “Don't Ask, Don't Tell.” (Maybe Johnny-lost-lately was simply irked that he wasn’t the person to whom these men sent their “go ahead” message.) In addition, a Pentagon study released earlier this month suggested that repealing the military ban would not adversely affect the troops. But of course,  McCain dissed the report as "flawed." Apparently, unless he’s the one in power, the Pentagon‘s research doesn’t warrant his awe.

Mr. McPain isn’t the only legislator in a twit over the impending pen of Mr. Obama’s signature to sign the repeal in law this week. Other vocal detractors include Senate Minority Whip, Jon Kyl. His explanation for voting against DADT: that the troops have one function - "to fight and to fight well," while possibly sacrificing their lives to fulfill that goal, thus repealing “Don't Ask, Don't Tell “could inhibit the process and, as a result, "cost lives."

Excuse me? Inhibit the process and cost lives. Hello there Mr. Kyl, war always brings the potential to “cost lives.” What are you suggesting? That the studdly gay man who pumps iron along with his straight comrades will suddenly wimp out when it comes down to carrying the tattered body of a soldier off the field amid gunfire into triage because he can’t be counted on now that he call "tell"? Are you implying that homophobic soldiers will refuse to follow the orders of a CO once they learn that he or she is gay despite having done so for years? (As if most hadn’t figured it out.) Are you hinting that male and female comrade loyalty will miracuously evaporate during the next missile strike? If so, you must think our troops are as shallow as you.

War is known to create unusual fox-hole-fellows. In the face of life or death, all soldiers worth their stripes will be as brave as they’ve always been. It seems to me that the lives you’re most concerned about are those in your chamber who fear fear its self. Oh, and by the way, Mr. Bile, what about the dying lives of the 9/11 “First Responders” whom you oppose helping? Unbelievable you are, as your resistance to decency is currently “costing lives.”

Well done.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Scrooge 'Em

Prep for the next Post

The Tide Has Turned - Sorta

Well-well-well. "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" passed! The Tax Cut bill also passed despite its cracks and the hacks. Amazing how quickly major laws or funding is dealt with as the sand runs near to empty in the last-minute hour glass of politics. How did these two much debated issues make the grade? Is it what I wrote the other day concerning the politico’s desire to get out of DC ASAP to hit the slopes or play more “Rope-a-Dope” with those feisty constituents back home? Or could it be that the prospect of the change in the House leadership to the GOP in January was enough to light a fire under the formerly complacent derriere's of yawning Democrats who’ve lacked the backbone to fight anything worthwhile for two years.

It’s cheers and jeers for all - particularly with the tax bill and all of its flaws.

But it's Sunday over here in the US of A where most of us would rather stay in bed most of the day than spend more time running around town in those last-minute shopping sprees to fill the Christmas stockings of shiny trinkets than dump a clump of coal. Actually, the way the economy is going, a piece of coal may be more valuable in the end than a cutesy little doll or an array of colored pens.

'Tis less than a week before Christmas and all through my house nothing weighty is stirring except the spoon in my tea.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Santa Came Early to Some, Late for Others

Santa's Claws Are Already In Town

‘Tis a week before Christmas
and all through the House
(and the Senate) are stirring
as some Republican's grouse.

Good gracious, it seems,
there is still work to do
which may cause our rep’s
to miss the big ta-do
of vacations and time
spent within their own state,
or another nice spot that they would vacate.

Have you heard these voices
complaining away
that due to their gridlocks
they might miss the slay
of Santa and Rudolph leading the way
into familial bliss above the vile fray?

‘Tis a week before Christmas and all through DC
an ire is growing that we cannot see.
Never fear, some keep on singing those boo-blues
as if they’ve been asked to take off their shoes
in the airport line where they rarely wait
because most of them slide through that telling gate.

But oh, St. Nickel-less soon will be here
for all who have feelings to shed the next tear.
Don’t miss the new sound-bites or you may be out
of the loop of the crazies who twist and shout.

Oh NO, they crow - is there another word to say -
are the stockings all stuffed with our own pork and hay?
Puff huff, well then, it’s time to dump
entitlements we fed into the endless pump.

‘Tis a week before Christmas and all who remain
in the Capital chambers must refrain
from whining and chiming how unfair it is
to do a job where they’re asked to unselfishly give
more than their egos and obligations and negations,
but thoughtful decisions with delayed vacations.

Copyright “Webtalk Productions” 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010

Close Your Eyes and Think of Washington

Sam Cooke - "Chain Gang"
(The set-up to Saturday's post.)

The End of Gays

Despite flogging the focus on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" vs. pragmatic concerns the U.S. has on its massive China plates, it would be disingenuous of me to ignore the statements, excuses, and recusals of many political and religious leaders who claim that repealing DADT would "ruin" America; that allowing gays to marry would deflate the holiness of heterosexual marriage; accepting homosexuality in any way is a sign of the End of Days. Sounds more like they want an "End of Gays."

The consistent sanctimonious drivel regarding homosexuality, esp. when it concerns a legal document called "marriage," can be best expressed in a post from a very hetero married "Friend' in my Facebook group. I believe her summation is wonderfully succinct:

Let me get this straight, Larry King is getting his 8th divorce, Elizabeth Taylor is possibly getting married for a 9th time, Britney Spears had a 55 hour marriage, Jesse James and Tiger Woods are screwing EVERYTHING. Yet the idea of same-sex marriage is going to destroy the institution of marriage? Really? Repost to your page if you agree - Proud to support equal rights for ALL.

Need anyone say more? 

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Guess What's Next

Frank Sinatra - "Love and Marriage"

Cry-Me and Shiver

Boo-hoo. Sniff. Gulp. Tremble. Shiver.

Ahhh, oh how sensitive those Republican menz can be. Yes, it’s almost a week since anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock has learned how emotional the future Speaker of the House, Mr. John Boehner, can be in public more often than a child flipping-out in a grocery check-out line when their parent-of-the-moment won’t let them have their own copy of Star Magazine to learn how Maddox Jolie-Pitt loves his knife collection. Or maybe they just want some candy.

Whatever the cause, it’s both refreshing and distressing to see how fragile our country’s most pompous leaders have been when it gets down to opening their tear ducts because they “love” their country while concurrently sticking a knife into 90% of the nation with steely “No’s” to everything which could soothe the gap between a rock and a hard place.

On “60 Minutes” last Sunday, Boehner/Bay-ner couldn’t hold back his emotions while millions watched the tiny driblets of tears running down his orange face. Poor baby. Are you having a bout of male menopause per chance? I mean, if Nancy Pelosi had ever done such a thing the sabers would have been rattling all over the globe. She’s a woman, after all, and women in power simply cannot cry in public lest they lose credibility as capable leaders. She may be crying now, but at least not on a national TV program.

Now we have Mitch McConnell, the Senate Minority Leader, choking-up on the floor of the Senate more than once, the most recent due to the exit of his chief of staff who prefers to begin lobbying than bobbling. Again, were Mr. Woe-ez-me McConnell to be so caring of the people, rather than the towering steeple of his ego, much more might be done to save the country from its current nightmares.

I wonder what would be said about Democratic leaders were they to begin crying and choking-up with seeming regularity? One guess is that their emotional stability would be called into question. Glenn Beck, in the midst of his own sobbing fests, might suggest in his daily Fox-based circus show, that Hitler was known to be an emotional guy, too, and, well, you know…all Democratic roads lead to Hitler on Becker’s nifty black chalk-board.

I’d love to end this post with a thought-provoking punch, but I’m feeling emotional right now. It’s okay. I’m a woman, and we’re allowed to cry unless we are in the public eye.


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Settin' the Stage....

Roy Orbison & k.d. lang - "Crying"

Cut the Crap

Back to flogging......

What in the world is happening to any form of federal fiscal responsibility in Washington DC?

The following is a list of what the tax bill entails for those who haven’t read or heard the details.  

5 Top Problems 

Problem #1: The deal is a stealth attack on Social Security.
The deal will lower the payroll tax—the tax that funds the Social Security trust. This is a trap for Democrats. Republicans have been coming after Social Security for years and this cut is the biggest threat to the vital program in decades. It will cut one-third of Social Security's funding this year alone and when we need to restore the payroll tax back to its current level, Republicans will cry "tax increases" and could gut it permanently. 

Problem #2: For nearly one in three workers, it's a tax increase.
Nearly 50 million working Americans—including all workers making less than $20,000 per year—and millions of federal, state, and municipal workers will see their taxes go up because of the deal.

Problem #3: The deal has not one but TWO millionaire bailouts.
In addition to extending all the Bush income tax breaks for the top 2%, the deal will slash the estate tax. If Congress did nothing, next year the estate tax would be 55% and apply to everyone inheriting $1 million or more. But the deal reduces it to 35% and only people who inherit more than $5 million will have to pay. This second bailout will give a gigantic tax giveaway to a few thousand of the richest families in the country and add hundreds of billions to the national debt.

Problem #4: Unemployment help is insufficient and inadequate.
While the deal extends unemployment benefits for another 13 months for people currently receiving it, millions of unemployed workers who've struggled the most and been out of work more than 99 weeks—since the giant Wall Street banks wrecked the economy—will get no help at all under the deal. It's a gamble that there will be jobs in the next 13 months when the insurance runs out, but the tax cuts will go well beyond that. Better to just pass a stand-alone unemployment extension to help all struggling Americans.

Problem #5: Tax giveaways to the rich are a terrible way to create jobs.
Tax breaks for the rich are the least efficient way to create jobs and help the economy grow. In fact the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says extending all tax cuts would lower unemployment only 0.1% to 0.3% over the next year and that the cost of the tax deal would be $900 billion over the next five years.

(Courtesy of

Digest all of the above and then consider the following if the tax cuts go through:

Not only do we have a threat to Social Security, now the Repub’s under the suave umbrella of Mitt Romney, are starting a whispering campaign to “privatize” Unemployment Insurance. That’s right. Just like good ole’ George W wanted to “privatize” Social Security. What a brilliant idea that was, eh? Had such a move been embraced and implemented, where would those who are dependent on their government savings account be right now? In a ditch, that’s where. Hey guys, let's gamble on Wall Street with your money that was earned and promised to you after a certain age. Based on the non-success of that idea, let’s start talking privatization of yet another fund American workers have paid into.

Interesting how politicians want American workers to gamble with their money via Investment Bankers/Wall Street, yet refuse to allow legal gambling in most of the states. What is the difference? The difference is that when one goes to a casino to gamble, it’s their personal decision to take the risk of losing everything in their wallet - or not. When the federal government mandates a legal form of gambling, no one has a choice. The contents of their wallets will go straight to the fate of an often shaky global market.

The mind reels......

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Blogger's Dream-Team?

In the Shrill of the Night

Warning: This is a long post.....

Shriek! Growl-Howl. Arrrgh. Oy vey es me-air! Oh, the horror, the horror! Instant gratification eludes me! I'm averaging mere hundred's, not thousands, of views on this blog! I'm a failure! I'll now fall upon any nearby sword and send me-self into an early grave! Woe, oh woe is me! 

Oh, puh-leeze!

One friend suggested that I am "insane" for expecting a larger turn-out after a bit over a month in the blogging cyber-space race. Harumph, I retorted. Many have a thousand or more "hits" per day. What, sayeth I, am I not doing to send in the crowns? I'm stumbling-upon, digging-it, face-booking, twittering, and feedburning until my arms grow weak. Uh, should I actually get out of my room and go out to places where real people talk to one another? You know, as in use my "charm"? Could all my latherings be mere blatherings? Am I deluded or truly eluded?

In the quest to understand how to create a unique and interesting blog, research was part of the process. The mantra is always the same no matter whether the article was written in 2006 or yesterday: become part of an already-existing community and gain the trust and curiosity, as well as a fan-base, of those you interact with on other blogs. Next, promote your blog on other’s blogs. Write about your passion. Don’t worry about “numbers” – and, by all means, get on the SEO’s ASAP and provide fresh content. “Raise eyebrows.” “Be not afraid to comment on controversial subjects.” (The last part is easy, but I am continuing to hold back for some peculiar reason known only to the inner workings of my self-sabotaging or self-preservationist Self.)

Tonight, as I write for Tuesday's entry feeling as if it is far later than it is due to the perverse mind-eff of our seasonal time change, I’m addressing all of the above because I have been following my passion in this blog. The truth is, I have many passions and I want to share all of them in one location. The response has been interesting when I check the stats of what particular topics are the strongest draw for my readers. How refreshing it’s been to note, for the most part, that many like the diversity from politics to the music videos. One day I’ll receive more views on the videos than the written material, another day it will be the opposite. Either way, it seems to be working. Ah, but I want more readers, more feedback. More-More-More. Am I greedy or am I needy? Or do I have to be labeled one or the other when I simply want to know I’m “heard.”

What’s driving me crazy as a blogger is that I’m obsessed with checking the stats. If I have a particularly high page view and visitor count, I feel quite happy. If I have a low-count day my mood becomes sullen. How can one really express their passion when one eye is on the subject and another is on the numbers? Why do I even care about the numbers? I don’t have ads on my blog. I’m not making money from my time investment. What I want is an audience. A very large audience. Why? Because that’s just who I am. Wise friends will tell me not to give it a thought and simply sally forth in honing my writing skills and, at times, expressing levity for myself and others who may want or need a break from whatever is troubling them.

Quite frankly, the above statement has a great deal to do with what I believe is a portion of my purpose in reaching out via the blogosphere to ramble, rant, vent and dent topics and people who I find less than wonderful. But, the deeper truth is that long ago I tired of wearing a mask of “all is well” when it may not be the case. I’m also tired of hearing people say or post on social networks how happy they are and how great they feel when, in truth, in private, if left to their own honesty, their Facebook status would read “I decided not to throw myself off the balcony today.”

Oh sure, it’s helpful to spread positive thoughts and energy around. A very close friend has a new self-help book out and websites filled with positive healing phrases and praises emanating from a true inner beauty. I leave that part of saving our jaded souls to her. Such is her calling and passion in life. I, on the other hand, am often someone who, though fortunate through happy, glowing times in my life, will be the one to answer the basic question of “How are you?” with an honest “I feel like sheet.” At that point, one either attracts someone who wants to offer a warm shoulder of comfort out of the goodness of their heart, or enroll you in a church or the Landmark forum. Conversely, such honesty may lead another to the nearest exit point. “I don’t need that kind of energy in my space” they will say or think as they shrink from the fear of “catching” the toxic energy of one who dares to speak an unpleasant truth.

I now dare to share this part of myself with you, too….because, at this moment in time, bitching about wanting my blog to become a grand success is my passion. What I need to remember, however, is the primal truth to most creative successes: do what you love and damn the result. Using myself as an example of this is born out in the fact that when I was a DJ and didn’t monitor my ratings, I later discovered how high they had grown. It was nice to know, but the best part was simply playing the music and loving every minute of the experience. The same nonchalant attitude permeated many of my careers that brought the most joy. When I was nominated for two Grammy awards as an audiobook producer, the two projects were not done with the goal of a nomination in mind. I simply sat in my producer’s chair, text in front of me, and a talented reader on the other side of the glass, and let the session rip.

The challenge in my new focus of attention while I wind my way into another new career direction, is to do my best to ignore the daily stats and just write what has tapped my mind and heart. But that’s not part of how one becomes a successful blogger. One is supposed to maintain an ever-vigilant assessment of progress or not...and then rectify the missing link(s). Unless one is under the tutelage of an editor/marketer on a major website, it's all up to you to deal with the dirty work. Tote that barge, lift that bail/bale. Oh, for the pampered days of ignorance whilst creating a sumptuous buffet of entertainment!

At least I knew I had a large radio audience when I opened the mic. The station staff always let us know, if not in precise details. When producing, reading, and abridging hundreds of audiobooks, I knew, via Publisher’s Weekly, how well any of my projects were going through reviews and basic news. When I worked in TV, I could cower with my head in the sand over Nielsen ratings, but “Entertainment Tonight” was clearly a success and there was no way to ignore the burgeoning audience.

Now, out on the range in the Wild West of the cyber world, left to one’s own devices, it’s a contradiction of the highest magnitude between passion and marketing/PR action. Am I willing to do all of the steps listed in the beginning of this post? It’s a lot of work, and most sites I read won’t allow one to promote their own blogs if the owners feel there could be competition. So what to do? Write to The Huffington Post and ask if they'll have me? I mean, honestly, I've written better blogs than a few of their starry-lights. How about The Onion? Like me, they appear to be having a bit of a humour block these days. Hmmm. The Daily Beast? I don't know. Tina Brown seems a tad picky.

To those who have a blog of their own, you know what may have driven me to openly share raw feelings, and perhaps why I’m writing this post at night with glazed eyes and question marks leaping around my head.

Is it worth it? Only the obsessed and distressed truly know.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Setting-Up Next Post

Rihanna - "Wait Your Turn"

Money Makes the World Go Down

Money, money, money. Big sigh. Isn't it truly the root of most evil? There is evil to be found sprouting out from other sources, therefore I won't point my spindly mad finger solely in the direction of one of the oldest cliche's in memory. Money has been, and will continue to be, a means to enact great deeds. Individuals with an abundance of it have saved land from becoming yet another concrete highway or gated community; built necessary hospital wings; saved millions of lives through genuine charitable contributions. Money provides the means to fix potholes in the roads...and, of course, makes it possible to build the roads in the first place…that is, IF the country, state, county or city can afford to do those things. Having money puts food on the table...if one has a table to put it on.

We could list thousands of reasons why money is important and what the use of it has done to improve all aspects of life. No question. There is a positive result when handled with care.

On the personal side of monetary wealth, if one is rich, money will provide a form of freedom to handle almost all of life’s pleasures, as well as to easily traverse unexpected expenditures caused by illness, accidents of all kinds, annoying former paramour’s with a damning little video on the verge of going viral….

Without going into a history lesson on the origins of money as we know it today, it is helpful to step back to observe what money actually means, as I believe modern culture has lost touch with the basic point when we toss around little cards of plastic and the paper and copper and silver and gold of exchange becomes a foggy memory.

Money is merely a tool of exchange. You give me this, I’ll give you that. Having something to give to another for a service or product has been part of life from the beginning. We all know this fact. Before we began using tangible “money,” there was a barter system. Hey, I need wood for my fire. You have the wood, I have the fire (as it were). Grateful exchanges were created as each one fulfilled the others’ needs. Everyone gained and all were happy ever-after. That is, until the one with the wood decided to slip a few little pieces of kindling in-between the larger pieces, resulting in an uneven, unethical barter.

Knowing the truth that within a non-monetary structure, inequality, cons and scams were already in action, why would I choose to flog on money, then? Isn't it back to the familiar refrain of "it's just human nature" that some people will be honest and others won't? Yes and no. As the population of the world increases, demand for services, products and food does likewise. Money, then, the "having" of it and the "non-having" of "it", becomes frighteningly muy importante'.

Jumping into what is now a fact that as with numerous third-world countries, the gap between the wealthy and those in poverty in the U.S. is widening and dividing our country all the way from the hallowed halls of Washington DC to the fallow strip malls of ghetto-land, and is why the debate and debacle over the tax cuts is key to what the future may bring (or not) for all of us, rich or poor...or in-between.

Nothing has "trickled-down" to those in need unless the hole in that thinking is alleviated through individual charities, altruistic millionaires, and what our government placed into law years  ago - Social Security. Medicare. And more.

Now we see a government willing to put what remains as a way to avoid excessive crime and illness once again on the public chopping block of a primitive mind-set to throw away what works to, instead, keep our wealthy happy and fat...or kept fit by the whip of a zealous personal trainer. Yes indeed, let's continue to have Investment Bankers run our economy. That really makes sense, doesn't it? What is the priority of banks other than to make money for themselves? Who can invest if they don't have enough money for groceries? And, with the exception here and there of the wealthiest percentage of the country donating perhaps a 1/3rd (or more) of their income to help others, does it make more than a small ripple in the grand waters between who we are indebted to as a country and the obligations we must keep in order to fulfill our monetary pay-back promises? (Hey, I like Chinese food, I really do...but after an hour I want a roast chicken with mashed potatoes.)

One thing I just absolutely love to hear is how our government spends money on providing plastic surgery to various "key witnesses" in the Witness Protection Program so that we can put a low-life like Jon Gotti in prison for being a ruthless mafioso. That's right. Do you remember how we shelled out thousands of dollars to give "Sammy the Bull" a new face prior to his testimony against Gotti? Wow! That was a great way to spend money, wasn't it? Sure, the amount was small in comparison to the national debt - then and now - but each little nonsensical expenditure adds-up. But no, let's pay our government doctors to reconstruct faces and remove damning gang-based tattoos from a jerk who wants to look less threatening when he appears in court. Yep. That's another issue in the news right now...that we know about concerning money spent on such procedures.

But heaven forbid we retain Social Security! Or Medicare. Gotta make cuts there, don't we? Gotta raise the age of retirement, too. Say what? These fools don't get it...or do they? LOWER the retirement age, give jobs to the younger jobless or under-employed college graduates who are currently flipping burgers and delivering pizzas to stay afloat, who will be paying into FICA with high-paying jobs, which will save Social Security in both the short and long-term. That makes sense, doesn't it? Create openings for the newbies to bolster the economy and save SSA. Oh, but that's too sensible. Too easy.

On second thought, I need a little plastic surgery, dental work, and a handler to ensure my safety and privacy. Perhaps I should start hanging out with scary criminals, gain a lot of dirt on them, and run straight to the feds for shelter and healthcare, along with those neat little cosmetic procedures don't ya' think? Then I wouldn't need Social Security when I "retire" and my healthcare would be well taken care of, wouldn't it? After all, bringing down a mob boss is far more important than tossing seniors to an early grave through lack of money and all of the ramifications such stress would cause.

More on this topic to come......

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A Lovely Moment

Sting - "Until" - from film "Kate & Leopold"

Uh-Oh, How Soft I Go

Well now, for anyone who has clicked on this blog to gain a small whiff of my latest tiff with politics or crazed posters on message boards, mingled with the odd dash of salty peppery-spray over insipid ramblings regarding the embarrassing admission of watching Lifetime Movie Network movies rather than shoot heroin to numb my senses, you're gonna be disappointed today.

I'm feeling rather soft-like and have fallen off the wagon of my "recovering romantic" feelings. Yep. The dastardly addiction to love and romance in its finest forms that had held me in its rosy grip for most of my life, and had been lessened through a step-by-step-out-of-the-two-step syndrome, has gone all astray. No, I haven't fallen in love again. I have, in subtle re-stepp-ering tones, fallen back in love with music = the root of all evil in my broiling romantic oil. Thus, I have to, must, and will, share my latest thrill with you in the video above.

Enjoy your Sunday..........

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Post "Post" Segue

David Bowie - "Changes"

Back in the Saddle Again

Yesterday was just another regular day at the White House. In front of a podium, the American flag displayed ever-so-perfectly in the background, stood our president in front of the press corps to answer pertinent questions concerning why the House should not vote down the recent compromise on tax cuts. He looked so at ease, as always, taking control with his typical savoir faire. It was such a relief to know he was finally taking control, finally in charge of the opposition. The problem is, the man at the podium was former President Clinton, not Barack Obama.

Following a crisis meeting in which Mr. Obama sought the wisdom of Mr. Clinton on how to handle the growing dissension within their own party, as well as the impending GOP control of the House in January, the former and current presidents showered the press with a Q and A worthy of an SNL skit. As Mr. Obama stood to the side of Mr. Clinton at the podium like a slightly chastened yet respectful teen watching his big brother fight the bullies on his behalf, rationalizations mingled with explanations regarding why the House must pass the tax cuts in order to extend unemployment benefits for 13 months, spewed forth from Clinton's well-honed tongue.

Solidarity indeed! In fairness, one of the ways in which President Clinton had been able to reverse the political losses in the Senate and the House during his presidency was to enlist the aid of several unlikely sources, one of whom was the savvy and level-headed Republican then-consultant David Gergen. It worked. Clinton made corrections, held his ground, and kept the economy and his party from falling into the Potomac. A wise leader should always reach out for help when change is urgent. Asking a former president who had faced similar difficulties was, in my opinion, a very wise move. Who would fault him for doing such a thing?

The slightly ridiculous aspect to the press conference, however, was how quickly Mr. Obama delegated a very important moment to Bill Clinton by announcing that he had to leave to "meet with Michelle" and then abruptly exited the stage and was not to be seen or heard from again for the remainder of the day, leaving good ole' Bill to talk on and on to sell the House naysayers on the tax cut via an open plea.

Gee, Mr. Obama, it's great to know you care about keeping your appointments with your wife and, as a happily married man, your priorities are clean and clear. But (there is usually a "but" with regard to President Obama these days) what the eff are your priorities? Whether or not you chose to hand the microphone over to a seasoned persuader to rally the troops and bow out in order to provide Clinton focused attention, it might have been smarter to say you had to "get back to work" instead of telling the world you might be a bit pussy-whipped if you kept Michelle waiting one minute longer for God-knows-what purpose.

Hey, I like you, I really do, Mr. Obama. You're cool and all of that. I just don't get who is running your ship these days because it appears to be floating around in shark-infested waters while you continue to take skinny dips off the bow.

Oh well. Nice to see you back, Bill. Now all of those who complained that Obama has surrounded himself with your former associates can bellow loud and clear that it didn't matter whether Hillary or Obama won the race, because you would still be there, the shadow who always shows.

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Robert Gibbs Factor

Stop! In the Name of...ummm

Er, ummmmm. I'd like to, ummm, write an interesting post today, but, ummm, I'm not feeling very clear or secure about, ummm, my topic. Nevertheless, I'll forge ahead to, ummm, elucidate my point no matter, umm, how dofficult it may be to, uh, get to the point.

There is an enormous amount of, you know, uh, issues going on all around the, ummm, world. What to choose? Uh, I'm certain I can locate the focus to, uh, you know, get on to whatever my point was on, uh, the chosen issue. Do you have a hint thus far?

Public speakers of one sort or another, in my, uh-ummm, opinion, should communicate with authority and clarity, you know, like, ummm, not using "ummm" or "uh" or "you know" every other word. That's just my opinion, you know. Who cares that the "ummm's" and "uh's" blur the message?

Have any of you in the U.S. or elsewhere ever been able to, uh, get through a press briefing at the, uh, White House by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs-Me-Headache without cringing at least a half dozen times when he falls into his tourettes-syndrome of "umm's" whether he's answering a question or simply announcing? Ummm. Isn't his job to be a communicator for the president? Uh, well, uh, even Mr. Obama off-teleprompter falls into the "uh-umm's" - perhaps that's why Gibbs got the job. All they had to do was nod and "ummm" their way into agreement. Easy interview, don't you think?

Dare I bring up how often our esteemed Secretary of State, Hillary-Chillery-Tock Clinton, "uh's" her way through, uh, you know, most of her speeches as well? Ummmm. It's true. Check it out if you don't believe me. I'm sure there is footage somewhere around the interwebs, you know, uh, where you'll find many "umm's" to add to your hair loss as you find yourself pulling on the strands just to get through what appears to be a torturous moment of, uh, communication concerning, uh, you know, serious matters of state.

Is the tendency to fall back on the "uh's" and "ummm's" akin to a virus in the administration? Nope. It's happened with other seemingly brilliant political figures who must speak in public. Did you notice how Condo-lease-me Rice could barely go beyond three words before she, uh, could finish her, ummm, sentence? Yep. Then, of course, you know, George W. could barely use words at all, so his "umm's" were often a relief from the painful moments he'd squint at the cameras with the now classic "Who, me?" blank stare wondering where his next thought might come from?

Granted, when the spotlight of the world is placed in your face, one must be cautious with how one expresses what they are communicating lest it become another laughable or misconstrued soundbite. Choosing one's words carefully is important: however, I certainly don't know about you, but I find these verbal crutches to be extremely distracting.

Robert Gibbs, for example, seems to be a nice guy who can usually take the lashes of his job without having a nervous breakdown. I wanted to like him when he first lumbered into the White House press room looking all geeky and disarmingly sweet and out of place until the "uh" and "ummm's" began tumbling out of his mouth until I no longer cared what he had to say. One day, while waiting to hear what I had hoped would be an insightful answer to a pressing question of the moment, I decided to begin a count of the "uh's-umm's" - after less than five minutes I had to stop at 50.

Could it be that part of the reason why Caroline Kennedy withdrew her bid for Uncle Ted's Senate seat was due to her inability to utter one sentence without the proverbial, "you know." "Ummmm." "Uhhhh." You know?

Not everyone has to be careful with their words, or lack thereof. Nevertheless, I do expect politicians and public speakers to weigh their verbal crutches more carefully and to speak directly, correctly and respectfully with at least a modicum of gravitas.

Is that too much to ask?

I mean, uh, I'm really trying to make a point here and, ummm, I hope I've done so, you know?

Thursday, December 9, 2010


The Beatles - "I'm so tired"

Steppin' Out

No Flogging today. I'd rather for those who are new to this blog to dig into the archives for a taste of various topics, and for regular readers to catch up on the many music posts of yesterday and beyond. The segue from lovely music to a new post of finger wagging seems too jarring right now. Real life intrudes as well....

In keeping with a quasi-Beatles theme, however, I'll post how I really feel.

'Til we tweet again.....

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Floating Away

John Lennon:  No.9  Dream

Interview with Dick Cavett

Remembering John Lennon

Today is dedicated to the memory of John Lennon. Where were you when you heard the news of his death?

I was sitting in bed watching TV when a news flash suddenly interrupted the program with an announcement that he had been shot, and it was feared that he had died. My SO at the time and I sat in true shock at the thought of such a thing happening to a musician, as well as the poignant fact that it was John Lennon - of all people! Within an hour his death was confirmed.

Stunned,  I didn't go to work the next day.


John Lennon - "Beautiful Boy"

Quiet Moments

John Lennon - "Love"

Odd Daze

The Beatles - "Across The Universe"

As They Moved Further Apart....

The Beatles - "Come Together"

Wiggle Room

John Lennon  - "(Just Like)  Starting Over - 2010 Remix"

Way Sweet

John Lennon  - "Woman"

Remember the Message

John Lennon - "Instant Karma"

A Soft Beginning

John Lennon - "Oh My Love"

Moving On

Just a note: This blog receives a ton of views every day. Thanks to all who check in. Why so silent, tho'? C'mon, I know you have an opinion pro or con. A Flog on silence, I say! Nay-nay-nay!

Yeah, I know. There have been typos and missing words in several of the initial posts. How off-putting! That sort of thing turns me off. All I can say in my defense is that I'm working alone, double-check my entries, and Spellcheck all the time. How horrifying it is to come back to a post hours later only to discover that Spellcheck allowed various words to slip through the gate and that I don't have the patience to check my work more than two times before publishing. One thing I will point out: I eventually find the error of my ways and fix them for posterity and clarity for those who check older posts in and out of the archives.

Meanwhile, today I'm taking time out from basic flogging to acknowledge the 30th anniversary of the death of one amazing talent; completely cool guy; a cultural icon: John Lennon.

Let's have fun together throughout the day with various posts and toasts to his legacy and memory.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Don't Ask, Don't Tell - What the Hell?

Yeah, it's the "Big Compromise" on the plate in the U.S. right now. Meh. Didn't everyone see it coming? If you would like details, go to a news site for thorough insights. I just offer the low-lights.

Ohhhh. My goodness! Mr. McCain-Pain never misses a TV moment to remind us that we are in serious debt to China. Just now. On the telly-box. That foxy fox talks. What would he, as a Prez, have done to change all of that? Fire Glenn Pecker? So, when did that happen - borrowed money from China and other countries? Does anyone care to mention how many countries have also "bought" our debt? Isn't it an egregious form of hypocrisy for anyone in the GOP to bring all of this up? Give me a break! Oooops. Such a statement may be misconstrued as a "Progressive" desire to get yet another benefit from our country.

As if many haven't paid into Unemployment and SSI over the years. AS IF everyone without a job is asking for  a hand-out. Hello out there in Floggy-land. One doesn't receive Unemployment benefits unless one has actually worked. Not only that, under "normal" circumstances, one has to have worked at a specific period of time and made a specific amount of money to be eligible for those much-debated benefits. Quite frankly, there is almost no difference between a personal Savings account at your bank and what the U.S. government provides after either "retirement" or during a temporary period of unemployment...for and to those who have worked for it.

But, let's digress to add to the mess. What the Bee-Hay-Suse are we doing debating and grating our teeth regarding "Don't Ask Don't Tell" when we're in such a dubious financial state and with wars raging and Mother Nature paging the paramedics? Why am I am following the digression? It's difficult not to when half of what was reported last night on mainstream and cable news dealt with the issue.

Hey, don't let my comments become misunderstood: we absolutely should not be tossing good soldiers out the door based on sexual identity. The hypocrisy involved in the political (not military) aspect to this issue is abhorrent. Although it's probably true that should the 2012 elections go to the GOP in every way we have a long way to go before one can be openly the militar-ee. However, what a wonderfully polarizing topic to force in the public's face when the very foundation of any one's life, straight or gay, is at risk due to fiscal irresponsibility of a FORMER administration which reigned for EIGHT years, remember? Yeah. Let's muddy the waters with the side-note of DADT.

C'mon, people. For the most part most soldiers know "who's who" in any sexual game and thus far we're still the most impressive military force in the world. Gay-bashing will happen with or without the DADT element. Unfortunately, those who do "tell" lose their jobs and we end up losing a tremendous resource of human wisdom and power in a world that requires willing participants to translate, debate, and initiate works that will save lives.

I'm treading on land-mines, here. However, it's simply a matter of timing. Yes, the classic comment "there is never a 'good time'" for issues such as this to be placed into law, but, I have to say that when many people have a choice between paying their doctor and buying groceries or else, with true sadness I have to turn away from GLAD-NESS.

Let's fight this battle another day when pragmatic concerns aren't so dire. Right now, too many have to fight just to PAY THEIR BILLS. Now that the BUSH TAX CUTS have been extended for two more years, the turkey on your table may be unable to provide more than a burned hide of gobble-gobble-sucked-in-pride.

Monday, December 6, 2010

It's the Econ-Oh-Meee - Not the Words!

J Balvin Feat. Jowell y Randy - Sin Compromiso Remix -

Topical Tongue Tumbler

My last post was odd, wasn’t it? Oh well. As my profile suggests, this blog is all about “self expression” on several levels, which means I can write in a stream-of-unconsciousness if I’m feeling particularly bored or absolutely silly - and, again, as mentioned - “unconscious.” Watching those daft little movies I wrote about the other day will do that to you.

As it came to pass, however, it wasn't another sappy or happy "woman's" film that turned my mental tongue into a twist: it was the wacky "Tropic Thunder" where half of the time one barely knew what most of the character's were saying. Truly a "man's" film one might say what with Jack Black's little farts. Good acting, though. It would be to Mr. Cruise's advantage to take on more character roles in the future considering his dismal Box Office returns of late as his grinning old stealthy self. I'd love to flog that man on so many levels were it not for fear that a few henchmen from the "Church" of Scientology would soon be standing outside my door with duct tape, hand-cuffs, and an open trunk of a town car at the ready to whisk me off for a taste of their non-medicine.

The above is as "floggy" as I'll be today. It's important that I gain strength and the inner momentum to tackle the substantial subjects of what in the world Washington politico's are doing in the "lame duck" sessions with regard to the tax cuts for ALL (that includes YOU multi-millionaires, and YOU TOO, Mr. or Mrs. almost-homeless).

Otherwise, my friends, have a lovely Monday....

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Unchained Frivolity

Dan Marro - "COFFEE, TEA OR ME "

Sunday Hum-Day?

Yawn. Stretch. Tumble down the hallway, turn on the gas burner for the water kettle, wait for the scream of the steam to alert you to its readiness. Place water into cup with strong black tea; steep until dark enough to ruin your teeth; add raw sugar and cream; stir... Sip, then dip back into your cavern of a bedroom to savour the remnants of a morning's awakening.

Sigh. It's cloudy outside. Shall I snuggle or brace for an outing in several hours when I'd rather stay home for the tease of rain showers?

That's right. No coffee for me. Not since 1986. I once had to pull myself off of ceilings after drinking decaf. That wee bit of coffee-based caffeine sent my adrenalin pounding like drips of Meth in a darkened drug-enhanced stupor. So why then am I able to drink dark, black tea riddled with additions I didn't need or use when I was drinking fresh-ground coffee in the days way before Starbucks even knew it would exist without bouncing off the walls? Dunno. It's just so. I can drink 10 cups of strong tea every day without the effects of one cup of regular or decaf coffee. Odd. "Studies show" that black/caffeine-riddled tea is stronger than many Lattes strung out within the same time period. Gawd. I may as well lend my body to science one day...if they will have me, that is.

While I wait for that fateful rejection that I assume will arrive after I'm no longer alive, due to all the jive my material self has faced on the shelf of true medical and non-medical experimentation, along with inadvertent radiation from exploding microwave ovens in my face and other twists of fate, I'll simply sip with the lip of my quipish nature to further infuse my decadent behaviour on a day in which Christians bow down to their Saviour.

Oh Sunday, the one day, that the kind of heart go to church; hypocrites go to perch; ministers wail and search for something to say that will save the day of the many who may want salvation to sway the willows of their pillows of comfort in the void of the ever-flowing torrents of all one warrants in the promise of a grander land beyond the hand of what this earth has granted its  grandiose "Netherland" - do you understand?

What just happened? Was I a-rappin'? Am I graspin' for some kind of truth? Is this real or did I steal the rhythm of the hoodie seal of approval that I'm a "real one", a bone-fide "chill" one, not an ill one, just your true blood or no tribe or pride-won. Hun? Or huh?

Well, from the sound of my voice today, those with whom I will brunch may say I either lit up the field or created a shield for true conversation to move on a course oh-so-smooth - within or without the innate groove.


How pithy.

Music may be the only salvation right about now, yes?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Does It Take a Guy to Tell the Truth?

Delbert McClinton - "Givin' it Up for Your Love"

A Woman's Work is Often "Done"

It's Saturday, and I'm preparing to stubbornly remain in a rut: on Saturdays I tend to stay home, away from the teeming masses, and watch vapid movies on "Lifetime", "The Hallmark Channel", as well as other cable channels where escapism by made-for-TV movies or direct-to-DVD projects are paraded for our mindless pleasure. It's within many of these films that I've watched too many powerful female characters packing boxes in their offices to move on into the wild blue yonder with a perky smile on their face while the credits roll on.

What's up with so many little films floating around on TV where working women with successful careers usually pack up at the end to go off to either marry the man of their dreams or to leave the stress of success behind after solving a major crime or winning the coveted client? Am I missing something? How many male characters go into retirement when they've made their mark? In a film, I mean. Not on the network series screen.

I haven't been a marching card-carrying "Feminist" at any point in my life. I simply lived a liberated life by nature, and if I liked a guy I had no problem asking him out. I also opened a door or two for them, and sometimes I would drive. I didn't join NOW although I have friends who have been at the head of that organization in one capacity or another, as well as one who started Ms. Magazine with Gloria Steinem on the campus of Harvard. I respect what all of these women and organizations have done over the years. For me, in a print  interview many years ago, I explained that I was for "human liberation" first and foremost.  In truth, I loathe being part of any organization unless it's job-related.

Based on good timing and having "the right stuff", in my 20's I was fortunate to slip into the men's locker rooms and play with guys in careers where many women barely existed, such as a DJ in the early days of "Progressive radio." Even then, however, I was aware that my job was made possible by the "Feminist" climate of that era. At one radio station our program director (who was a liberated male, a member of NOW, and quite irked at me for not joining) made a comment one day as a woman in our news division and I were walking down the hall together. The PD remarked, "There go our tokens..."

After over 30 years of the "modern" woman's movement, wouldn't one think that by now popular culture would embrace women's rise in all areas outside the typical role of "mother", "wife" and/or going off to soothe one's spirit in a quaint little town to open up a cute B & B after slaughtering corporate lions?

Examples, you might ask? Oh, please spare me the title research and trust that I've seen enough. Perhaps you have as well. Yes, there are many films out there where the female character remains on the job despite the odds and is supported in her venture by a male partner, be it her husband or another testosterone-based entity. All is not always a walk-away. It's just that I have seen too many of these "moving on" themes cropping up in the past  few years.

The message that the films are sending harkens back to an underlying belief system that our American values are out of order, eroding the foundation of the country when women place career above family. Arguments and debates rage on over the subject of how women who work take on two roles while their mate saunters home from his burdensome work day to go directly to the refrigerator for a nice cold beer or to the home bar to mix that perfect martini as the children run wild through the house in their latest costumes and the wifey is cooking up a tasty roast as sweat trickles down her pasty face, resentment building with each baste.

I'm serving-up an observation of what many have found to be a great disappointment in the continuing stereotypical roles of men and women in our culture. Nothing more. Nothing less. As my fingers begin to itch to pick up the TV remote to initiate the search to numb my overactive grey cells for the day, I thought about what I may be viewing, which is why the subject has rolled off the keyboard of my laptop this morning. And sure, I have a choice to watch a marathon of NCIS or, if lucky, stumble on a charming English mystery... But then, for today only, what fun would that be? I wouldn't have a reason to flog, would I?

Of course, this topic is merely the tip of the melting icebergs of our dubious climate, and deserves a bit of depth in another post, don't you think? It will happen. Just not today. I can't wait to watch another successful woman character be written off to go to a desolate ranch and live with that hunky cowboy and his horses.

Yee-Haw, y'all!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Dance to What "They" Are Sayin'


Avril Lavigne - "I Don't Give a Damn"

To Flog or Not to Flog

With the weekend at its beginning, Han-ee-kah dinners, date-nights, more travel flights and shopping galore, let’s pause for a moment to ponder the concept of flogging vs. dancing on magical clouds of accepting all that is as it is with no complaints. That’s right: the difference between living in an energy field of constant positive energy or snarking through life hissing and dissing.

First of all, there is a middle ground between walking on air and digging into the compost bin. Even when you catch that falling star and put it in your pocket, something usually pops up to rip that darling star from its comfy home in a silk-lined safety net. Or cotton. Maybe wool. It doesn’t matter, really. You may be living on a material high, following a spiritual path of one sort or another that provides uplifting feelings and thoughts that have attracted good fortune your way - and yet, that dark little moment, thought, feeling or incident, will slam you against the ropes until you no longer see lovely stars in the sky but stars swirling through your head and in your eyes from the unexpected punch.

Whoa…. I just felt punched. I glanced over to the TV only to see another politco “talking head” from the GOP indicating that America is “rotting” from “dependence on the government” - meaning, of course, Social Security and Unemployment Benefits. Sure, Mr. GOP, that’s why we’re a bankrupt nation, right? A corrupt administration/Wall Street/Investment bankers/Ponzi-schemers/War-mongering leaners, had absolutely nothing to do with where our economy now sits? Or squats? Or plops?

Social Security became the “law of the land” in 1935; unemployment benefits also began in 1935 as part of the Social Security Act to balance the nation’s suffering during “The Great Depression” in order to stabilize the economy. The US of A had its ups and downs before and after these “perks” were set in motion, but it’s only NOW that these extremely helpful benefits are “rotting” our nation? It’s only NOW that the obstructionists want to send more people to the streets while the other half feasts? Shall I faint or paint or shrug my shoulders and slink away in oblivious ignorance to the potential demolition of a system that has saved millions of lives for over 80 years?

Was the well-seeded amnesia of who and which administration brought the economic mess into the country “in the first place” brought on by the stinging realization that there is a man of colour at the helm, not to forget that he’s also a Democrat? Sour losers they are. Worse, they are devious hypocrites.

Let’s go get him! Damn national security. Damn how dumping unemployment extensions will create more crime, more emotional and physical hardship to those who least need the stress. Damn those who have no money. Too bad. It’s their fault they lost their jobs and can’t get work because we say NO to everything the president wants to do to boost the economy and avoid deeper chasms in our nation’s structure.


Believe me, the minor rant was not planned although it does serve my purpose in the overall point of today’s post. Anger may not be an energy most of us care to live with every day, but it exists in the best and worse of us no matter how kind, loving and forgiving we may want to be. To ignore this truth in our human nature leads to illness of the mind and body. To live in constant anger is also not healthy. I would prefer to travel on a beam of golden light leading to the pot of material and spiritual gold at the end of the glowing and glistening rainbow - it can happen. In my life, at times, it HAS happened. I truly believe in miracles; I also know that repressing a supposedly “negative” emotion/attitude can be a very deadly force.

To Flog or not to Flog? There is no question.