Monday, December 31, 2007

Watching The Ball Drop!

I do not plan to be in Times Square this year for New Year's. However, if you want to see all the festivities from there just click HERE

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Watch it!

YouTube still amazes me. I find nearly any video I can imagine. Since I won't be blogging as much over the Holidays, I'm going to post some videos for you to check out when your in the mood. Happy Holidays!

CATEGORY: Christmas, music
"A Christmas Story" Montage
A montage of the classic holiday film A Christmas Story accompanied by music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

CATEGORY: Christmas music, Comedy
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer by Dr. Elmo
I laughed the first time I heard this Holiday classic and kind of just tolerated it ever since. This is the first time I've seen the video for it so I guess I can laugh likes it's the first time once again.

CATEGORY: Off Color Comedy
Borat on the "Opie and Anthony Show"
The character Borat is coming to an end. This interview from the "O&A" Shows is pretty funny. Borat has these old radio pros really cracking up.

CATAGORY: Silly Comedy, Music
KOTRproductions perform "Dang Me"
While looking for "King of the Road" I came across this little ditty on YouTube. It's a video made for a classic Roger Miller song. I've known this song my whole life and if YouTube was around way back in the day - I might have made a video a little like this one. It's stupid but very funny. These guys have what you call "hidden talent".

CATEGORY: Sit Com Bloopers
Bloopers from "Frasier"
Frasier is one of my favorite shows of all time. Here are some funny outtakes.

M performs "Pop Music"
This was the first new wave music video I can remember seeing. It came out before MTV and set the tone for the early 1980's New Wave trend.

Men Without Hats perform "Safety Dance"
One day I'll have to do a long blog post about the legendary safety dance parties I had back in the day. If you're thinking of throwing a party and are looking for a theme - a "Safety Dance Party" is almost always a sure bet.

Happy Friday!

Everyone is travelling now. You can see just how amazing it looks here. Here's a good song to sing on the road. Be safe. Happy Friday.

UPDATE: I didn't watch the whole video until this morning. I found it very interesting that Roger Miller, who I always considered a pretty straight laced guy, seemed to be tip toeing - ever so gingerly - into the counter culture movement of the time. Notice how he yells out "hippie" at one point and seems ill at ease at the reaction he gets. Even more surprising to me was the final line of his second song which he changed the lyrics to call cops "the fuzz". It seems so odd to see a short haired, suit wearing guy say that, but more than that the audience reaction again seemed to catch Miller by surprise. I wonder what was going through his head at the time. It seems to me that he wanted to be part of the emerging counter culture - figuring it would help his career - but didn't feel quite comfortable doing so.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

(HINT: Start with scissors)

Wednesday Roundup

It's been a busy week for work, news, sports and weather. Let's do a little roundup.

We had our "office party" last night. If there are any employers out there reading this let me tell you something ... giving free alcohol to your staff is a GREAT way to boost morale. Going into the party everyone was complaining about their jobs and co-workers - by the end of the night it was one big love fest. I really enjoyed it a lot. It's nice to see your co-workers in a social environment and I know they saw another side of me too (the "real" me?) I was not the somewhat grumpy somewhat disgruntled guy they see everyday. Also it seems true that those who work hard also play hard. I am a hard worker.

I just love this piece about Roger Clemens*. It's so nice to have company in my long running distaste for the guy. He now denies everything, but I don't believe him. He may not make it to the Hall of Fame and even if he does he will certainly not have the opportunity (I hope) to disgrace the New York Yankee uniform again. I do appreciate Andy Pettite's admission, explanation and apology. I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that Roger Clemens* encourage Pettite to do it. Pick your friends carefully people.

The FSU Athletic program is in trouble again with reports that 20 or more football players were caught cheating on exams and will miss three games starting with the upcoming bowl game. What a mess. With a new Athletic Director now and new coach soon (I hope!) perhaps things will get straightened out.

It's been cold, windy and icy. I don't mind the cold but could do without the wind and ice.

My GOP fav Mike Huckabee is still surging making my prediction look better and better. He could certainly still implode (especially since he seems to be getting carried away with things. He should take a cue from Ron Paul and ride the wave - not try to force it). McCain seems to be doing better but I was impressed with Mitt Romney on Meet the Press this past Sunday. As I thought, he is a reasonable and smart man. He may regain his lead too. It will be a great race to watch! On the Democratic side, many pundits are saying that John Edwards is on the upswing. He's not really my cup of tea, but true liberals really prefer him so who knows. I still think that Obama will prevail.

Another young solider for "movement conservatives" has set the ground work for their dream of a permanent Republican majority. Kevin Martin push through regulations that would allow right wing propagandists to buy up and control even more media. I know I sound like a broken record but these "movement conservatives" are nothing less than fascists determined to turn America into one party state. (I continue to struggle with what to call this. They call themselves conservatives - but they are not. Also, there are many people who ARE conservative that are as frightened of this wave as I am. So I call them "movement conservatives" because they want to force their views on America by hook or by crook. They don't see politics as a way of helping people - they see it as a means to direct money, power and influence only to those who choose to join the movement. They are educated ( sometimes exclusively) by, young republican groups, talk radio and through other right wing media. These "movement conservatives" do not look at the world and come up with ways to make it better - they are determine to push through their ideas at any cost, to destroy anyone who disagrees and deny reality anytime (which is often) they need to. They have fooled a lot of good people - good conservative people - for a long time. These "movement conservatives" will never stop trying to rape this nation. Consolidating the media so that the truth is harder to find is an important part of the plan. I hope to God that we can look back one day and be thankful that they were stopped before it was to late. But that day has not come yet. BTW I would equally fearful of any liberal "movement". I'm not a movement guy. Movements, in politics, are dangerous.)

I travel to Miami on Sunday for Christmas and I am so excited. I love to go home and see everyone. I'll be in the air during the Patriots*/Dolphins game which is good. I would be too stressed out if I tried to watch it. On a different note ... a couple of weeks ago, after years of good service, my beard trimmer broke. I have always trimmed my beard pretty close and pretty often. When I wanted to "go wild" I would move the trimming guide from 2 to 3. How daring! Even at 3 the beard was quite short. Well, for a number of reasons, I did not buy a new trimmer yet. After all this time my beard is bigger than it has ever been. And guess what... nobody noticed. Truth be told, no one ever notices the changes in my beard. It's dumbfounding! I have had a beard, been completely shaved, had various shapes of goatees and now let it go wild and no one ever sees the difference! It's not that I have a wispy beard at all- I have a nice full beard (inherited from my Dad who has an awesome beard). During the past week I have asked people at work "notice anything different about my beard" - no one has. So I am going to let it go for another week or so because I notice and I think it looks good - especially for the winter. Walking around the City with my hat, scarf and beard I imagine myself a bit of a mountain man braving the elements in cold and windy New York. I have quite an imagination.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Dolphins Win (Honestly!)

My Miami Dolphins finally won their first game today with an overtime victory against the Baltimore Ravens. It's about time. Now they don't have to join the Tampa Bay Suckaneers as the only modern NFL team to go without a victory. Meanwhile, the shame of the NFL, the Patriots* were awarded another victory this weekend even while questions on the extent of their cheating grow and evidence that the NFL helped them cover up evidence surface.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Late Thursday

I was in lower Manhattan all day. It hailed, briefly snowed, hailed some more and then rained until about 8. Not very nice. I got uptown about an hour ago and everything has almost an inch of snow. Much better.

I'm going to try to read the Mitchell Report on steroids over the weekend. I'll probably have more to say about it. I haven't seen today's Democratic debate yet, maybe more on that later too.

The Steroids List

Today at 2pm the Mitchell report on steroids in baseball comes out but already two players have been named. Roger Clemens (who you all know I hate anyway) and Andy Pettite (who I like but really is just a simple minded follower) are reported to be on "The List".

UPDATE: Well it was a long list. The biggest surprise to me was David Justice, the most humorous Chuck Knoblach. Looks like the asterisk key will be getting a lot of use by those who write the baseball record books.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Just the Worst

This is a daily feature on Countdown with Keith Olbermann. It's a short list of people whose behavior goes from bad to worst.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


A commencement address by Barack Obama in 2005 provides an excellent summary of his thinking and shows the reason I support him for President. This excerpt comes from the middle of his address where he has been talking about the historic choices this nation has faced and how we are in a similar position today. You can get to the entire speech here.

Like so much of the American story, once again, we face a choice. Once again, there are those who believe that there isn’t much we can do about this as a nation. That the best idea is to give everyone one big refund on their government—divvy it up by individual portions, in the form of tax breaks, hand it out, and encourage everyone to use their share to go buy their own health care, their own retirement plan, their own child care, their own education, and so on.

In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society. But in our past there has been another term for it—Social Darwinism—every man or woman for him or herself. It’s a tempting idea, because it doesn’t require much thought or ingenuity. It allows us to say that those whose health care or tuition may rise faster than they can afford—tough luck. It allows us to say to the Maytag workers who have lost their job—life isn’t fair. It let’s us say to the child who was born into poverty—pull yourself up by your bootstraps. And it is especially tempting because each of us believes we will always be the winner in life’s lottery, that we’re the one who will be the next Donald Trump, or at least we won’t be the chump who Donald Trump says: "You’re fired!"

But there is a problem. It won’t work. It ignores our history. It ignores the fact that it’s been government research and investment that made the railways possible and the Internet possible. It’s been the creation of a massive middle class, through decent wages and benefits and public schools that allowed us all to prosper. Our economic dependence depended on individual initiative. It depended on a belief in the free market; but it has also depended on our sense of mutual regard for each other, the idea that everybody has a stake in the country, that we’re all in it together and everybody’s got a shot at opportunity. That’s what’s produced our unrivaled political stability.

Every one of us is going to have to work more, read more, train more, think more. We will have to slough off some bad habits—like driving gas guzzlers that weaken our economy and feed our enemies abroad. Our children will have to turn off the TV set once in a while and put away the video games and start hitting the books. We'll have to reform institutions, like our public schools, that were designed for an earlier time. Republicans will have to recognize our collective responsibilities, even as Democrats recognize that we have to do more than just defend old programs.

It won't be easy, but it can be done. It can be our future. We have the talent and the resources and brainpower. But now we need the political will. We need a national commitment. And we need each of you.

Now, no one can force you to meet these challenges. If you want, it will be pretty easy for you to leave here today and not give another thought to towns like Galesburg and the challenges they face. There is no community service requirement in the real world; no one is forcing you to care. You can take your diploma, walk off this stage, and go chasing after the big house, and the nice suits, and all the other things that our money culture says that you should want, that you should aspire to, that you can buy.

But I hope you don't walk away from the challenge. Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. You need to take up the challenges that we face as a nation and make them your own. Not because you have a debt to those who helped you get here, although you do have that debt. Not because you have an obligation to those who are less fortunate than you, although I do think you do have that obligation. It's primarily because you have an obligation to yourself. Because individual salvation has always depended on collective salvation. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Cartoon Commentary

Movement Conservatives

Don't have to be educated in U.S. history, they just have to know how to repeat the talking points they have been fed their entire lives.

Cartoon Commentary

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Forward Thinking Political Analyst For Immediate Hire

It is nice to see that after years of studying politics and providing analysis, all my hard work is finally being rewarded. Oh, not financially of course (at least not yet). But the surge of Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama, which has confounded traditional experts, is actually playing out just as I predicted. Of course, there is a long way to go and anything can happen, but I am personally pleased (and maybe even a little bit relieved) that all the unpaid effort I have put in over the years has not been a waste of time. At least I am gaining an understanding of things.

Now that Mike Huckabee is getting closer the position of Republican front runner, he is becoming a huge target by political opponents. A couple of issues from his past have resurfaced recently. First, the fact that a man he helped release from jail, raped and murdered again. It's a tragic case, and one that he had more responsibility for than he first admitted. However, it really doesn't sound like something, in my opinion, that SHOULD stop his Presidential prospects. I remember the Wille Horton ads and thought it was dishonest for Bush I to suggest that it showed a flaw in the character of Michael Dukaksis. The same goes for Huck. Yes, it was a tragic mistake. But I am convinced that he has learned from it. What else can you ask of someone?

The next issue is with AIDS. In 1992 Huck said that AIDS patients should be quarantined and that funding should be held back because of the moral issues involved with this disease. He now says that he was wrong and excuses himself by saying that knowledge of the disease was much less then than it is now. This doesn't really make sense to me. After all, this was 1992 -not 1982! There was more than enough information out there for Huckabee to have avoided such ridiculous comments. Clearly he was pandering to the GOP base at the time without doing his research. Bad Huck!

It is important to remember that even though Huckabee is the best in his group, he is still a Republican. I'm sorry to say that modern Republicanism is grounded either in (intentionally disseminated) misinformation or a complete ignorance of facts. Huckabee certainly was no exception in the 1990's. He bought into all that "movement conservative" denial of reality stuff. But, here is the difference I see with Mike Huckabee - rather than stay set in his ways and continue to ignore reality, Huckabee educated himself and adjusted his positions and policies (including AIDS) based on what he learned. For a party which seems hell bent of forcing the world to adjust to their backward policy positions, it is nice to see at least one candidate in the GOP actually adjust his positions based on the facts on the ground. For a modern Republican that is groundbreaking stuff and I am hopeful that voters in their primary will continue to see the need to purge their party of ideologues and keep Huckabee on top for their party's nomination. It would do this country a lot of good to have someone from the GOP that, if not completely grounded in reality, at least is familiar with the concept.

As far as Obama is concerned I remain optimistic. He represents change and I just don't see the supporters of Edwards, Richardson or any of the other going to anyone but Obama. Barack should do well in Iowa and New Hampshire (probably win both) and the 2nd tier candidates will begin falling off. This will only strengthen Obama and should send him on his way to the nomination.

Enough of all that. Lets return to my favorite hobby of self congratulatory back patting. (I have learned that if you wait for others to notice you are doing a good job - you will probably never get what you deserve. Sad but true.) Below is an opinion piece by NY Times columnist Frank Rich. He is one of the best in the business and has penned a piece today that echos what I have been saying for months now. He is as right now as I was when I said it months ago. (P.S. Yes, this is all a thinly disguised attempt for anyone out there who might want to hire a political analyst and commentator that is often is well ahead of the curve. Contact me by e mail - I am available for immediate employment!)

Here's some of Rich's column:
COULD 2008 actually end up being a showdown between the author of “The Audacity of Hope” and the new Man from Hope, Ark.? It sounds preposterous, but Washington’s shock over Mike Huckabee’s sudden rise in the polls — he “came from nowhere,” Robert Novak huffed last week — makes you wonder. Having failed to anticipate so much else, including the Barack Obama polling surge of days earlier, the press pack has proved an unreliable guide to election 2008. What the Beltway calls unthinkable today keeps turning out to be front-page news tomorrow.

What really may be going on here is a mirror image of the phenomenon that has upended Hillary Clinton’s “inevitability” among Democrats. Like Senator Obama, Mr. Huckabee is the youngest in his party’s field. (At 52, he’s also younger than every Democratic contender except Mr. Obama, who is 46.) Both men have a history of speaking across party and racial lines. Both men possess that rarest of commodities in American public life: wit. Most important, both men aspire (not always successfully) to avoid the hyper-partisanship of the Clinton-Bush era.

The fact to remember about Mr. Huckabee’s polling spike is that it occurred just after the G.O.P. YouTube debate on CNN, where Mr. Romney and Rudy Giuliani vied to spray the most spittle at illegal immigrants. Congressman Tom Tancredo of Colorado, the fringe candidate whose most recent ads accuse the invading hordes of “pushing drugs, raping kids, destroying lives,” accurately accused his opponents of trying to “out-Tancredo Tancredo.”

Next to this mean-spiritedness, Mr. Huckabee’s tone leapt off the screen. Attacked by Mr. Romney for supporting an Arkansas program aiding the children of illegal immigrants, he replied, “In all due respect, we’re a better country than to punish children for what their parents did.” It was a winning moment, politically as well as morally. And a no-brainer at that. Given that Mr. Tancredo polls at 4 percent among Iowan Republicans and zero nationally, it’s hard to see why Rudy-Romney thought it was smart to try to out-Tancredo Tancredo.

The real reason for Mr. Huckabee’s ascendance may be that his message is simply more uplifting — and, in the ethical rather than theological sense, more Christian — than that of rivals whose main calling cards of fear, torture and nativism have become more strident with every debate. The fresh-faced politics of joy may be trumping the five-o’clock-shadow of Nixonian gloom and paranoia favored by the entire G.O.P. field with the sometime exception of John McCain.

Saturday, December 8, 2007


I hope it is Spectacular!!!!!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Happy Friday

The Grammy nominations are out and the two big nominees are Kanye West and Amy Winehouse. I hear West from time to time and he is OK but I am a huge fan of Amy Winehouse. I bought her album Black To Black from iTunes a couple weeks ago and was blown away. It's the best album I've heard in years. If you haven't listened to it check it out. Like everything theses days it is definitely R Rated but the emotion and sheer raw talent throughout the album gave me goose bumps. It's awesome.

Yesterday the big political news was the speech by Mitt Romney about his Mormon faith. To me it is no big deal. I look at Mormons as I look at any religious group. Actually I may view them slightly more favorably. My experience with Mormonism is part of the reason why. When I was in my mid 20's I worked with a guy who was Mormon. He was middle aged (which seemed old at the time) and I think an official in the local Mormon church. When I found out he was Mormon I was interested because, like a lot of people, I thought they allowed polygamy (which, to be totally honest, was a way of life I thought I would feel comfortable with). They don't and I never really followed up on it. It probably would have been a bad reason to join a religion anyway.
Fast Forward 15 years and my next exposure to Mormons was when I was living in Las Vegas where there are tons of them. It was there where I really got to become familiar with the Mormon church. They are definitely frowned upon by traditional conservative Christians and I heard them referred to as a "cult" or "tribe" very often. The Mormons I met however were actually very nice, and seemed easier to related to than the traditional fundamentalist types (If you didn't know there are A LOT of strict religious people in Las Vegas). Also the Mormon girls I met in Las Vegas were sweet, attractive and fun to hang out with. Good people!
During my brief return to Florida, one of my roommate was Mormon so I got even a closer look at it. I saw that during hurricanes THEY were the one to take in refugees and THEY also were first on the scene to help people. I was mightily impressed that they were proactive in providing good deeds. On the downside they did come to the apartment frequently to check with my roomie whenever she missed a service. I also went to one of their services and it was fascinating. My main memory was having a small group of elders siting very high up on pedestal looking down at us all and making little marks in their books. I found that a bit disarming but otherwise it was fine.
So, the way I look at it - I wouldn't become a Mormon but from what I have seen they are good, sincere people who actively seek to help the less fortunate. I like their tithing policy and overall have positive feeling toward Mormons. (Plus, it's kind of amazing that they chose to live in the mountains of Utah which will be one of the few places in the USA to survive if Global warming really goes all the way.) So, I would have no problem with a Mormon as President (although I'd strongly prefer a Democratic Mormon to a Republican Mormon).

Surprise, surprise! The videotape of CIA interrogations were destroyed. Just how much corruption will the America people tolerate before they say enough? I remember how the "conservatives" were so apoplectic about perceived wrongdoing by Bill Clinton. Their silence during the past 7 years shows me that they have no interest in honesty or even in the future of the United States. Shame on the media too. Let's see if they give this the same attention as they did the Monica Lewinsky story. Fat chance.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Football's Shame

Monday night I was snug in my bed getting ready to drift off to sleep. I had the local 11 o'clock news on to see what I should expect in the way of weather for Tuesday morning. As a "teaser"the sports guy said something like "looks like the Patriots* winning streak is coming to an end". Of course, I immediately switched over to ESPN to see the good news. What I saw was the most disturbing 3 minutes of football I had viewed in some time. Now, I have had the displeasure of seeing many painful games in my day. The 1974 Christmas eve game where Kenny Stabler threw a last second TD pass as he was falling down to beat the Dolphins and ruin my holiday was first but there were many, many more. The "historic" comeback by the Chargers (1980?)verses the 'Phins and countless wide right or left losses by the FSU Seminoles. Monday's game might rank right up there. I just couldn't believe how the Patriots*came back. Dubious calls and multiple second chances. Well, as I suspected, the team that cheats, the organization that has put the very credibility of the NFL on the edge may have remained undefeated because of shady officiating. Watching the game I noticed that too. Why the NFL would want the Patriots* to keep winning is beside me. Frankly, they should have been disqualified and handed a loss for at least the first game against the Jets, where they were CAUGHT cheating. At this point the Patriots* are the Barry Bonds of football - bringing shame and dishonor to a great sport. But perhaps, in a controversy reminiscent of recent NBA troubles, the Patriots* also have some officials on the payroll too. Seems unbelievable, but after watching the end of the game Monday, you really have to wonder. Listen, no matter what happens this season, the 2007 Patriots* are a team of disgrace not accomplishment. The NFL should correct things now before things go from bad to worse.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Enemies of America

I have always said that the authoritarian nature of the Bush administration is not unique to him but reflects the anti-American agenda of the "conservative movement". I'm sure most of you all have heard how right wingers in California are trying to change the electoral college (for their state only!) in order to gain that "Permanent Republican Majority" these little fascists dream about. Of course in order to accomplish this they need to fool people into thinking they are doing something else. Nothing new here, but if they succeed, the chance of a Democrat EVER becoming President becomes almost mathematically impossible. To Hell with the will of the people. Listen, even when George W. Bush is long gone, these dangerous forces will remain in the United States. Like a disease that can be controlled but never cured, the "conservative movement" has to be continuously monitored and always fought otherwise it will kill this country.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

First Snow

Just woke up and there is snow on the ground and snow falling! Looks just beautiful. Now to schlep my way to work.

Saturday, December 1, 2007