Thursday, August 17, 2017

One of Two

Two.

Shep turned two yesterday!

He's now a dog, no longer a puppy.  ....though going by his wilding two nights ago, you'd never know it.

I wanted to do it up for him. Go to Pet People and get a doggie cake for him, and put a candle in it.  Oh, and a new toy.

But folks, that takes planning. Leaving work at 18:15 doesn't really lend it self to running a few miles out of the way.

We will make sure he's treated right though.

Shep religiously gets dinner after his late afternoon / evening walk.  In my book.

In 710's version, he gets dinner exactly at 18:00. Or so I just found out.

So after our walk, Shep goes to his bowl, as one might imagine. But since it's a big day, he got some wet food. He wasn't chomping at the bit for it, but that's when I found he had already gotten dinner.

Some hound!

Petey wouldn't have scarfed it all down if it were his 33rd dinner of the night.  

That's him up there getting his 2nd dinner.


So this weekend, we will make sure he gets extra attention, which to him means extra extra extra extra extra attention.

...and maybe a new toy.    As if he needs another.



Song by: the Bangles

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Where the White Boys Dance

Fuck.

This man is like the gift that keeps on giving. ....and I don't mean drug-resistant syphilis.

I'd enjoy the latter more. While it might lead to a bad outcome, at least I might have enjoyed the fuck.

Clearly I was (and wasn't) way wrong regarding my post yesterday. I said I was surprised he actually amended his statements from Saturday and that I expected him to double-down.

Well, as we saw - and as Professor Chaos pointed out in a comment - he was back to showing his true colours (not quite like Cyndi Lauper).

Work was a bear yesterday, so I saw no news whatsoever. And I no longer play NPR on the way home, as I try to avoid that anymore too. Sorry Robert Siegel.

710 came in after his 40 minute commute, where he listened to news the entire way. So naturally, he came in riled. ....and disgusted. So I got a quick 30 second elevator discussion about the day's events (while I made spicy pork tacos, I might add!).

So this whole 'white nationalist' thing - no Jews or blacks (poor Sammy Davis Jr never had a chance!). Where is Jared and Ivanka in all of this?  I'm sure they think they can minimize these situations, but if they're truly the smart folks they say they are, they'd call it a day and leave with all the CEOs who are fleeing.  I said "IF".  No one is claiming either are Mensa members. Or could even spell Mensa. They're offensive to the Jews, almost more than their boss/dad.

Also, my comment on the new chief of staff?  Yeah, he has zero sway over his boss. This is a military man - one who thrives on order (in theory). With this kind of fuck-uppery (it's a word!), how long do you think he'll last?  Though this time of his own choosing.

....and then there was THE tweet.


I'm sorry - the 'deleted' tweet. So deleted, I got someone's screen capture of it.

Big White Terrorist Runs Down Innocent Victim.   Sound familiar?


Thank g-d that Sarah Huckabee will say her boss never condones violence.  I'm waiting for the "he was joking......" spin. ....if it hasn't already happened.

So I had planned a Shopping with Blobby segment today........but the fucking SCROTUS got in the way....again.


710 think it is time for a march. Multiple and in multitudes. I agree.

Everyone was so quick to do the Women's March in January. I'm no community organizer, but I would TOTALLY go to this. No offense to the girls, but at this point we should be able to quadruple the numbers.   .....though I suspect lots of white nationalist protesters.

I say:  BRING IT !!!!



Song by: the Killers

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Little too Late

So - Dump finally said the words "KKK", "neo-Nazis" and "white supremacists"

He called them 'repugnant'.  What you didn't see was his hand behind his back with his fingers crossed.

As I've said before - and as Ms. Benatar has sung - "it's a little too little, it's a little too late".

I'll be honest, I thought SCROTUS would stand his ground and not be bullied into saying what people criticized him for not verbalizing. I suppose his new Chief of Staff has some sway with him. That said - he's insincere and I know of no one buying a word of it.........or even a syllable.

I remain deeply disturbed over the weekend events in Charlottesville.

In certain ways, I've expounded on this is what we were becoming, true to thinking it would and could happen. Yet, when it did, I think even I was surprised. Or was it shocked?  Or both?

The protests and the violence were not unexpected. The almost lack of law enforcement was.

There have been far less attended rallies than this in the last 3-4 years. There have been far more peaceful protests where there have been many many more arrests. So one of my takeaways was that there can be armed white men with torches, spewing hate to whom almost nothing happens to legally. But if you're a silent protester of colour, well..............good luck with that.

That actions speak louder than words was deafening. That is what white privilege looks like - in case you were wondering.

But this goes so far beyond race. I was reading a friend's FB feed where he rightfully called out anyone who was a Dump supporter was a white supremacist. He went on to say that if you voted for him for other reasons - immigration, healthcare, economy - you still knew what the possibility for what you were signing on for.  (I even said during the election that you might not be a racist but you have to be ok with knowing you are supporting one.)

I was surprised how many Dump voters Scott knew. One of them saying it was such a small faction of people - less than 100,000 probably, by his estimation - that acted this way and in the big scheme of things amounted to nothing.

....so for my 3,491st Hitler / Nazi /Dump reference in this blog:  O.M.F.G. Asstwats (it's a new word), like this actually think the Nazi party was just 'there' and that it didn't grow from a grassroots effort. Or that the police who allowed it became the Gestapo.

Yes, maybe running down people isn't taking them to the gas chambers, but you know, you gotta start somewhere. If you haven't seen the "alt-right" messaging on the woman who was killed, I beg you NOT to look. It is more horrific than running her down with a car.

It all resonates on so many levels. As much as I'd love to lay this all at Dump's feet, clearly even he isn't enough of a leader to bring this kind of change - albeit, horrific change - in such a short time frame. He'd love to tell you he could do this - but we've seen his talents, and getting people to go along ain't one of 'em.

He did give the power for others to hate. He's made that clear, though he'd be the second to deny it - right after that talking cow, Huckabee-wannabee, would be the first.

My only slight uplifting thing that is coming from this is the facial recognition software and social media identification that people are doing to these asstwats (trademark pending) who attended.  Yes, the protesters had a right to free speech - I'm not taking that away from them. But loving the people who are using free speech to find them, and let their families and employers know what they've raised and hired.  One of those pushing back saying: "I'm not the angry racist you see in the photo".

There is a problem with that sentence of course. Is he not in the photo? Is he not angry? Is he not a racist?  I'm going with the middle one.....except that he's totally angry.

There is a problem not just for the homos when it comes to 33 states being able to fire you without cause. These shits can - and some have - been canned. Here's hoping they go to the central valley of California forced to pick crops, because they can't find other employment and well you know, they wanted immigrants out.

I feel better venting this, but the darkness will return. I'd say I honestly know what to expect next, but I think we all do.



Song by: Pat Benatar

Monday, August 14, 2017

My Music Monday

It's 'guilty pleasure' month.

I won't say I have bit off more than I can chew, but what I thought might have been funny now just seems like more than the potential of humiliation.

I have vacillated on if I should choose mildly embarrassing stuff - or just dive in..........things that could be worse than Andy Gibb.

I know - right?   Yeah, I know what you're thinking.

I'm just doing it. I'm not sure it's going to get worse than this the rest of the month.


Back in 1983, someone thought it would be good to re-team Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in another movie.  As it would turn out, this would be the second movie in which these two "starred" which Blobby was never ever ever to see.

To be fair - I'm not 100% sure anyone saw their movie Twist of Fate.  Not even themselves.

While the movie wasn't a musical (phew!), Olivia was still riding high from her Physical album two years prior, so a song or two had to be recorded for the inevitable soundtrack.

I can't tell you why I like the title track, but I do. One could argue that while it doesn't have Prince playing keyboards, with the synths and bass, it's not that far off from Stevie Nicks' "Stand Back" which came out at the same time.

It's pure synth-pop, but it still tops anything from Xanadu...............I mean, I'm guessing. I never really heard anything from that either.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

12 of 12

So I'm doing my 89th 12 of 12.

Normally it is 12 pictures taken on the 12th of the month. Since I only post once per day, you get my images the following day. All pictures taken with my iPhone. Click images to enlarge, if you choose.

Created by Chad Darnell and picked up from, what I can tell, any number of random bloggers who then link back to him and vice versa. Chad is no longer doing this, nor is successor coordinating the linking of other 12 of 12'ers anymore. Now it's just Erik and myself - that I know of.....as it's the only blog post he's still doing......for now.  

I still continue to do this, because of all my consistent post topics, I actually like this one the most.

5:36.  Yes, the clock is ahead by 4 minutes. 

I was totally ready get out of bed to walk HRH Shep, but 710 opted to do it.  Which unexpectedly kept me in bed until.......

7:29.  .....then I stripped the bed and threw everything in the wash. 

7:45.  Sophie felt she was deserving 

8:50.  Shep looking skeptical at the vet. 
Just an annual check-up and time for boosters.  Spray cheese and treats were consumed...many times. 

It was Dr. Smith's first time seeing him. He just could not get over how he saw lots of different dogs in him, just to make up one pooch. 

10:00.  It seems we have a little bit of an access issue via the dining room French doors. 

12:30.  Ooooh.  A package. And it's for me!!!!

It was cookies. And not from Mike. 

13:30.  Lunch at Panera.  

14:15.  Getting BB&B stuff. 

15:35.  Took a test drive at Acura. I liked it. 

16:50.  Rainforest Car Wash.
....we were in 710's car. 

17:51.  CNN and Charlottesville, VA. 

I'm going off script here in regards to a 12 of 12

This Virginia shit is fucked up. 

In the past year, I've made any number of Hitler and Nazi references to "his" candidacy and presidency. It's all coming together....and quickly. And that SCROTUS has not (and will not) call out the alt-right white supremacists or even say their name, says so much about his agenda is frightening. It says more that in his "statement" he equally blamed the counter-protesters. This man is no leader. Far from it. 

I honestly thought by end of week I'd be writing a post on a newly started war (or wars, since Venezuela is now in his cites) even though he himself has claimed that the U.S. should not be the "world's policemen". He's a liar and a fraud. And a sociopath. 

The man might be an asshole, and a dick, but he's one in office and has the power to do what he pleases......as NO ONE IS STOPPING HIM. 

This country has just gone from a laughing stock to a frightening one. Many of us already know the kind of man he is.....and now he's just shown everyone. 

The time for RESIST has come to an end. Now it is the time to actively FIGHT. 


....now back to our regularly schedule 12 of 12

19:38.  Thai dinner.  Brought in. Not made.  Not by us. 


And your Baker's Dozen.......

22:10.  Peach Graeters Ice Cream.  
It sells only in July. I may have purchased a few pints. I might be down to my last. 



That's it folks.  At least for this month's 12 of 12.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

How Does a Duck Know?

Full week back from vaca.  But work was tough - so there hasn't been tons of new pics. But fear not - for Shep's and Sophie's loyal subjects, I shant leave you high and dry.

video

Shep's second to last day at his boarding. He does seem to love his Bella. 


We got the band back together. But someone was exhausted from his 24/7 dog commune. He barely gave Sophie the time of day...........you know, if he could tell time. 


His first dog park since we got back....the day after.  Who's a happy guy? 

video

.....and back to his new favourite toy.  The duck goes everywhere he does. 





Song by: Crash Test Dummies

Friday, August 11, 2017

Lies of Summer

Lies not just of summer.  Lies of winter and spring too.

All of them since the inauguration.

I almost made this my Site of the Month, but clearly did not.

The "failing" New York Times (but still the paper he went to give an exclusive interview a few weeks back - go figure!)

The NYT has catalogued nearly every outright lie he has told publicly.

"Nearly Every".

Well that could be anywhere from 5 to 5,923.

He's pathological. Not about the amount - though it is troubling - but by what he lies about. As I've said in other posts, stuff he doesn't have to lie about. Things that are so nothing, and yet he gets called out on them constantly.

You'd think the embarrassment from the TV media, which he claims he doesn't watch, then comments on constantly tell you otherwise.........so it's another lie.......would be enough of a deterrent.  Clearly it has no effect.

But it's a running list. So I expect it to keep being updated.

It seems they have not shortage of source material.




Song by: Aimee Mann

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Site of the Month

Merit based.

That is SCROTUS' immigration policy. Would-be policy that is.

It sounds like it doesn't have the balls to go anywhere - - kind of like anything else associated with Dump.  Other than Ivana, Marla, that is.

Time magazine (which I can't believe is even still a thing) breaks it down for you all on if you would be eligible for immigration.   Click Here.

Spoiler Alert:  I'm not.

The thing is, I also did it as his current wife - Melanoma. Even with giving her the benefit of the doubt and saying she has a salary of $155,000 or more, she still scores one less point than I.


Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Busted Stuff

SCROTUS and North Korea.  I just can't.

As 710 said a the morning after the election:  "ride out the apocalypse with me?".

We might not have to wait full-term.  Maybe Kim Jong Un is just doing us a favour. Perhaps he actually feels sorry for the mistreatment we as a country are getting under our fucked up leader with bad hair.  I mean, if anyone can relate, it would be he.

-----------------------------------

What else do we have......

Oh yeah, SCROTUS tweeted classified information that Fox "News".  I'm sorry - but wasn't someone vilified for having non-classified information in emails?  And wasn't a current president and his Fox co-horts the ones who were the ones with pitchforks and torches?

So either neither of them know what irony may be, or they don't understand what is classified as classified information.  Either way, I'm a little scared.

-----------------------------------

Dump and his pals have a new low in approval ratings, though he's denying it. Shocking.  'Declining approval amid widespread mistrust' - so say the headlines.

See, this is why Dump well all 'Fire and Fury' - because when you're numbers are in the tank, a war always helps.........................for a while.  Right, Shrub? And it's easy to distract from your unpopularity by making threats of a starting the New Cold War.



-----------------------------------

Oh - and this press shit of Dump having a 'working vacation'.  Are they fucking kidding me?

They make it sound like past presidents never got a daily security briefing or just turned off their BlackBerry.  Hell, even Shrub got updates on Katrina.........sure he did nothing with the 4-1-1, but he got the intel.

Once again, the Fake News media is letting Dump off the hook, like he's the first one to take a call while letting down his hair and pulling up his Depends.  They make him sound almost like a martyr. But that's how it goes.......he's been controlling the media since day 1.


.....that missile cannot get here fast enough.




Song by: Dave Matthews Band

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Making My Way Back Home

As you probably picked-up by might not to mysterious blog entries, that 710 and I were on vacation. Our first full week away since our Outer Banks vaca last year.

Good thing we didn't go back there - with that massive power outage and evacuation due to said outage.

This year it was back to Maine. Our last trip didn't seem that long ago, but when I thought about it - it's been a little over four years. And this year, we didn't drag along Becky or Georty. Though they were missed.

I did parts of a new video, so we will see if it comes to anything within the next week. After that, the statute of limitations applies to vlog pieces. I'll have to get motivated or lose the opportunity.

We did spend time in Boston, which you saw with Magic Mike. That was fun. At least for me....and Rafael.

The next day we walked......a lot.

 We saw the building where they shot the exteriors for St. Elsewhere.   Ooooooh.

We went past Fenway. The Big Green Monster really wasn't that impressive.  I kid....I kid....we did go by Fenway. I've never been inside and didn't make it this time. The "joke" is that Cleveland was playing Boston right after we left.  The real "joke" was: we lost all three games.

But I wore my Indians cap and we got a lot of people who were Cleveland fans....mostly up at Harvard, where we rode our rented bikes.

Still it was about the beach. We had great - nay, perfect - weather. I think it rained 14-17 drops while we sat eating outside at a new Thai restaurant. The rest was blue sky, sun and great breezes.

The ocean was up to a balmy 64 degrees. A woman said she'd been down two weeks prior and the water ranged from 47-51. Lord that's chilly. I fully went in once.

....and just an FYI. It sucks going in when it's low tide.  You have to really want it....and keep going and going so it's deep enough to dive in.

There was plenty of good food (only two nights of great food), plenty of wine......or tequila. And lots of doing nothing but sitting outside and reading or walking the beach. I averaged about 25,000 steps per day.

We also go our canine fix by stopping to see every dog who came in proximity to us.

I shant tell you too much more, as you'll want to see it in the video.  Should there be one.

Shep was happy to see us when we got back. Elated actually. He climbed 710. Literally.....up and over the shoulder. He had a good time.

Re-entry to work was difficult. Not just because it was work.......but I walked into a shitty situation. I'll survive. I always do.






Song by: Iris DeMent

Monday, August 07, 2017

My Music Monday

You know how I said my "Guilty Pleasure" theme could go south really fast?  Is week #2 too fast? Because I decided to pull the trigger and just go for the worst case scenario:

Andy Gibb.


Yes.  You read that right.

Now now...... before you get too judgmental or don't read farther, give me a second to 'splain.

I'm not a fan of his or anything. Not that I know many of his songs, but there is only one I like. And if I dig deeper, there is one part of one song that I like:  "Love is Thicker (than Water)".

Gibb didn't write it or anything. Well, not Andy Gibb. Barry did. His Bee Gee brother. But Barry is all over the song, in style and well, you can pretty much hear his vocals too.

I'm not 100% sure Andy had talent for anything other than snorting coke and banging Victoria Principal. Even I had "talent" for one of those things.

Quick story (what you say?  too late?), I remember a semi-pre-dyke Kristy McNichol intro'ing the song on Solid Gold saying how much she loved Andy Gibb way back when.  1977?  1978?  Morty - help a brother out.

Still it's the couplet (triplet?) "while I need her more / than she needs you / that's what I'm livin' (praying) for" is just done so well and so unexpected compared to the rest of Gibb's - Andy or the Bee Gees - work.  And that is the part of the song that makes me stick through the rest of the play.

Hey - make fun of me all you want, but it's not like I'm proud of this in any way, shape or form. But at least it's not "Shadow Dancing".


Sunday, August 06, 2017

False Media

Are you afraid yet?

To paraphrase Master Yoda:  "You Should Be".


Do I care that the Department of Justice is "going after" leakers? Sure, but I suppose it is there right - to a degree - to keep workplace things confidential.   .....except, the DOJ is not the Executive Branch. It's that whole separation of branches thing.

If HR in the WH can't handle their own staff, there are bigger issues. Though allegedly they might be getting lie detector tests.

That has me cracking up. I think they need to start with Mike Huckabee's daughter. She lies daily. LIES.  ....and no doubt considers herself a devout christian.  Oh the irony.  Oh the hypocrisy.  And no doubt she's part of the White House bible study group.  Double irony. Double hypocrisy.

But the DOJ, especially Jeff Sessions, is the scary one in all of this. Perhaps he's trying to keep his job - except that his job is to uphold the law......the Constitution.

Leaking unclassified information might be a fireable offense, but it's not an illegal one.

Yet Sessions is seemingly taking it one step further and basically threatening the press should they print any leaked information.

Think about that for a moment - won't you?

First amendment be damned, he will try to prosecute the press for printing leaked information. I mean, this is a guy who prosecuted a woman who laughed at his confirmation hearing.  Onion skin is thicker than this man's own.

So the building blocks are all in place:

  • 'Fake News' is yelled daily to discredit the press
  • Cameras are banned from press conferences
  • Limited or knowingly falsifies information during press conferences
  • Whistleblowers will be prosecuted
  • Press / Reporters to be investigated / prosecuted
Supporters and non-involved parties can all cast a blind eye to this, but this is scary shit. You are looking at a government controlled press. 

North Korea has that.  Syria too (for the most part). Ditto with Venezuela  ......and Hitler controlled Germany's press. 

And I get that I have made yet another Hitler reference with this administration.......but that is why it's so scary. One could argue that Adolf H. did it slowly and deliberately over time, almost with no one noticing. SCROTUS & Co. aren't taking their time......and while people are noticing, there is no one doing much of anything to stop them. 


I think Sessions is a slime in the first place, but as I said earlier, his job is kind of on the line with his boss. This looks like having both lips pressed firmly against SCROTUS' anus - with tongue probing inside - but the combo of slime-buttlicker is a bad one.

I wish I had the answers on how to counteract all of this.

Lawsuits?  It seems fruitless almost. Lawsuits against the Department of Justice. That is a lot of thwarted hoop-jumping to try to get to the Supreme Court - that would fucking hopefully hope up the First Amendment.  .....but with a few of those justices in place, I'm not even so sure.

Bother.  This country is on the verge of dictatorship.

Seriously.


Song by: the Roots

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Playboy

While we are enjoying our holiday, it seems, and I'm hoping, that Shep is too.  I can guarantee Sophie is not - even though she has someone checking in on her regularly.

We made the right choice to board Shep in his doggie-hippie-commune.  Our time away has been stress-free knowing that he is well taken care of, happy and cage free.

....and we are happy that Amanda is sending pictures every few days.  She's smart enough not to inundate us daily, as that would keep us from having fun as we waited for the daily pic impatiently. When we do get one, I love that 710 has to view it like 8-9 times.

We have tried to make doggie friends on the beach. Sometimes their owners are not on board. Sometimes the dogs are not. But we get enough wags and a lick or two to sate our need for canine interaction.

Still - it's the Shep pics for which we long.

Amanda took Shep down to the coffee shop for a trip out. 
I see this will probably be a thing he'll want to do going forward. 

Oh yeah.......that's the spot. 

His best-girl: Bella. 

It sounds like they chase and chase and chase and chase.  Then wrestle. 
And I fear they each have someone's shoe. But I'm only paying for half the pair. 

They are SO cute. 


video

I don't know who this is, but it seems to be all good fun. I hope. 



We pick him up around 10:00 today.  Squeeeee. I'm so excited.




Song by: Dwight Yoakam

Friday, August 04, 2017

Lies

As you might have picked up in this here blog, I am no fan of SCROTUS.  What I don't get is that no one else seems to be either - as his über-low approval numbers are now über-lower. 33% of voters approve of his performance.

He's approaching Chris Christie numbers.

And while they called John Gotti the Teflon Don, let's face it Dump should get the name.

I just don't get it - nothing sticks to this man.  NOTHING.

He outwardly lies about the President of Mexico calling him, as well as the head of the Boy Scouts. Both deny it publicly. But once the bell has been rung, there is no taking it back - at least from him and life goes on even though it's a known lie. He lies about things he doesn't have to - he just cannot stop himself.

Right now, I don't think I've ever wanted anything more than this Fox News - Dump- DNC death story to be true. I need it to be more than true. I need it to proved. I need it to fully play out - though I think Fox will be the only loser. Dump will walk away, slapping his hands clean.

Ditto with interfering for his son, Qusay Jr.

Say what you want about Dump's interfering with the press on everything that is not his propaganda being 'fake news'. Where IS the news?

It's all commentary. Where are the true investigative reporters?  They have got leads, they have stories, they don't have solid documents, or anything directly linking anything to anyone.  While I don't think it's 'fake news', they make it difficult to disprove Dump's words.

And while I applaud (well, kind of) people making a mockery out of the CNN / White House press briefing on immigration, can we all just agree that it was shitty questions and answers on both sides?

While I'm never going to side with this White House, but even CNN has to know that Emma Lazarus' poem is not the actual immigration policy of the U.S..  The White House doesn't have to make CNN look bad - sometimes they just do it on their own.

And if I have to hear the words "constitutional crisis" again, I'll puke. This is coming from the GOP and DNC - if SCROTUS ends up firing Bob Mueller from his investigation. It all sounds threatening - this 'crisis', but with a House and Senate majority and 2018 elections right ahead, who wants to wager money - any amount - that it anyone will do anything about it, should it happen?

I'm almost rooting that the North Koreans can hit the U.S. with missiles.  They'll do less destruction than we are doing to ourselves.


Song by: Glen Hansard

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Record of the Month

I figured I'd do a monthly 'what I'm listening to' kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it's my blog! So there!


I would like to say I'm surprised at how disappointed I am with Everything Now by Arcade Fire, but I'm not. They eased me into the disappointment.

The band released four songs, one-by-one, before the actual release of the rest of the disk. Some were more disappointing than the others, but none of them were truly good.

The first track released was the title one. I guess if you don't mind them singing the title 1,008 times, you're golden. It was annoying........and yet now in retrospect, after hearing the rest of the disk have I come to realize it might be the best thing on the album.  (not so much for the other two "Everything Now" versions.)

"Creature Comforts" was just bad. I can get over the subject matter and even the tone. I can't forgive the bad lyrics and the worse vocals. Still, it's stellar compared to "Electric Blue".

Does anyone truly think Régine Chassagne, as a lead, is a decent vocalist?  It can't just be me that reaches for the 'skip' button when she appears. You'd think that heavily processed vocals in "Electric Blue" would help her situation - - it does not.  She needs to stick to backing vocals.

The fourth release, "Signs of Life" had promise. Musically, it is the most interesting thing on the entire disk. Lyrically it doesn't work. I like the chorus, but the verses are not good. Win Butler is better than having to talk / rap. I just find it difficult to believe they hit the playback and go, "man, this is really good!".

I figured at this point with a disk that contains 13 songs (but really 10), that if your first four releases are duds, it would be tough to have the rest of the disk be stellar.

Spoiler Alert:  it's not.

Two versions of "Infinite Content" ......and they are two versions too many.  If you thought they said "everything now" too many times, well then you better buckle in.  The versions are 1:37 and 1:42. They may as well been 137 and 142 days long.  This is something the U.S. Military would have blasted over and over to drive Noriega from his home.  If I were Manuel, I'd have given up before the first song was over.

The disk has its moments.  I like "Put Your Money on Me". "We Don't Deserve Love" isn't bad.  "Good G-d Damn" starts off ok. It doesn't end ok, but it showed promise.

Of all the disks I've purchased this year, Arcade Fire is by far the biggest let-down. Everything Now, is by far, their weakest disk.

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Deflect Project

J.F.C.

You can't even go on a bloody holiday for a few days and tune out of the news - no matter how hard I try.

Friday, before we left Boston, it was the Priebus firing. Yes, it was weird, but not unexpected. More weird of how it went down. But Reinhold had to see it coming, no?  Still the schizophrenic White House is out of control.

The timing of the firing. The location of the firing. The timing of the tweets.....one of the final ones from SCROTUS praising the work that has been done under Priebus, but clearly that was not really a thing.

Don't even start me on Scaramucci, though it'd be like ignoring the elephant in the room.

Blobby went for a walk on the beach alone two days ago, only to return to the resort pool where 710 told him me of the news of his abrupt termination.

I was, and wasn't, a little surprised. First off, there cannot be to Dump-like folks in the White House. There was no way two foul-mouthed assholes could remain in power. And that whole thing of a communications director firing people, even insinuating he could fire the chief of staff, seemed someone too big for his britches.

Secondly, was he even part of the team? Allegedly, his "start date" was to be in August as he had to divest himself of his company to avoid conflicts of interest. Pffffffft.   Why?  Dump, Ivanka Dump, Jared Dump haven't bothered to do so.

Most importantly, I can't imagine a former general, now chief of staff would accept a job like this having to watch his back after such a little cocksucking turd such as Scaramucci.  Of course, that joke is that Kelly will now have everyone report up to him and no direct lines to the president. This is supposed to include Bannon, Ivanka Dump and Jared Dump.

Do any of you see that really happening?  A general should need and want order. He's not going to get that in this administration. He won't last six months either, but this time, he might be the one doing the walking.


But of course, here is the bigger take away:

Since Priebus' firing....or the appearance of Scaramucci in the first place....how often in the papers, have you seen the words:  "Donald Jr." "Jared." "Collusion". "Probe."

Yeah - me either.  Low single digits, if at all.

And this, my friends, is how they win.  Distraction. Deflection. Sight of Hand.



Speaking of how they win:

"When you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon. You see them thrown in rough. Please don't be too nice."  SCROTUS said to law enforcement in this country.

You can guffaw at the following, because the rest of 'Murica is too, because they don't see it as a possibility:  German police became the Gestapo. Hitler controlled the media.

It could be argued that they are bad guys and if they get banged up. so be it. But it's a chip away at the base of our civilization and our civil rights. The police are already not doing a bang-up job at their public image. This gives them more fodder if the President and the Justice Dept support their actions.

It could be argued he's talking about 'thugs'. But what is a 'thug'? Bet you don't think you're one, but the Gestapo might think differently.  And by then, it's too late.



Song by: Guided by Voices

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

I Started a Joke

.....the best laid plans.......

Four years ago, I had this scathing brilliant idea to prank my would-be friend, Mike.

You see, Mike was once on the Bachelor. It's true. I mean - it's kind of true. He even wrote about it here.

So four years ago Mike was supposed to see us in Maine for just a few hours. But as luck would have it, he ghosted me. The plan involved just me and my friend Morty. I never got to execute said plan.

Fast forward four years, three weeks and a day (but who's counting?) and I have arranged to meet Mike for drinks dinner whilst in Boston. As it turns out, his husband, Peter, decided he'd rather stay in a remote part of Massachusetts with the dog than to be seen in public with me.  It's hard to see a down side from his perspective.  Since we didn't have Peter as a counterbalance 710 did not join either. Another wise move.

Still, I had the idea to launch my scathingly brilliant idea anyways - though an audience would have been better. Of course, it would help if the butt of the joke (hehehe....I said 'butt'), had not descended into early on-set Alzheimer's.

So.....Blobby heads to Club Cafe. Just to be clear, you enter through a single door where if you go downstairs, you go into a crossfit studio. If you stay on the main level you're in a gay bar. Quite the juxtaposition.

Scratch that.  It's Club Cafe is not just a gay bar. If you go to the left, they have seating and beyond that a piano bar.  If you go straight, it's just a bar with high tables. If you go further back there is dancing....and if you got somewhere to the right......and I shit you not......they're having a staging of Waiting for Gadot.  If you had thrown in a hair and nail salon, this place was gay nirvana.

As it turns out, I was Waiting for Gamike.....as he was 15 minutes late, texting and mocking me his entire walk.



His tardiness gave me time to put my plan into action.  I spoke with the maitre d' who wrangled the man who would be our waiter, Rafael, who happily agreed to participate.

Mike arrives........finally!!!......and being the man in this relationship, I order for both of us.

Is it scary that I know what he drinks? This place doesn't have blue-cheese stuffed olives. I'm surprised he doesn't pound his fists on the table and storm off in a huff. He struggles on through the adversity. He....is.....a......survivor!

When Rafael returns with the booze, he says to Mike, he says......."Don't I know you from somewhere?  Weren't you on the Bachelor".

Rafael pulls it off flawlessly.

Then with all the subtlety of a lead balloon falling from the heavens, Mike goes, "no.....that wasn't me. I wasn't on the Bachelor".  

Rafael looks at be for a nanosecond and I just wanted to pound my head on the table. Instead I say calmly, "that's not true......you even wrote about it",  to which a light (a night one, I'm guessing) went off in his head. He turns to Rafael and says to him he says (and in complete seriousness) ......"I can't believe you saw me on that and actually remember" (I'm paraphrasing, of course).

Now I really want to pound my head on the table.

So with perfect execution and delivery, a joke can still bomb. I still feel it was worth the effort. And the 25% tip I gave to Rafael.

My original plan was to meet Mike and Peter for drink in Maine and have a never been seen before Morty run in with paper and pen asking for Mike's autograph, for being on the Bachelor.  Maybe a four year time difference would have jarred Mike's dementia.

I suppose his blog wasn't title "short attention span theater" for nothing.

Poor Mike wanted to show Rafael pictures proving he was indeed on show, but Rafael didn't really seem that interested.  Can you blame him?


As for the rest of the evening, I cannot speak for Mike, but I had a faboo time. He's as witty as it comes - mostly at my expense, but I can take it. The conversation was easy and fun.....though not doubt helped on by three margaritas and a beer.....and one-third of a martini.

Yes, Mike didn't finish his third martini. It wasn't cold enough he said. He's a fussy one, that Mike. So I used the rest of his alcohol to show him the proper way to Sammy Jo his drink.....and yes, "to Sammy Jo" is a verb. He wasn't as impressed as one might think.

Oh we had dinner too. Welllllllll......we had nachos.

Classy!

We may have found people in the bar at which to poke fun, and it was all in good fun. We meandered back to the dance area too. We did not dance. He never asked {sob}. And until some Diana Ross song came on, we were the oldest people in the vicinity.  And since Mike is like 7 months older, he was the oldest.

Oh oh oh.......embarrassing moment....for me. I came baring gifts. As you might know, I lost big time to our  6th Annual Academy Award Guessing Game®   The problem was, I had not paid up yet on our wager. So on the way to Club Cafe (really.  such a gay name!), I hit Georgetown cupcakes and bought his winnings. I'm never squelching on a bet.

He was very gracious about this. And somehow he roped me into probably losing again for the Emmy awards.

Anyhoo.....I'm standing there holding his bag of cupcakes and some lesbian comes and tells me I'm not allowed to have packages near the dance floor and that I'll have to coat check them. It was annoying, so we left.

Now, only as I type this do I see my folly. It's been over five years since I've been to a gay anything, and Pulse has happened since then. I suppose having packages in a gay club probably is seen with different eyes than it used to. I'll have Mike apologize to her the next time he goes back.


For as much as I tease him, Mike is a great guy.  Just don't ever tell him I told ya so.



Song by: the Bee-Gees

Monday, July 31, 2017

My Music Monday

I'm thinking for August, I'd do a 'guilty pleasure' theme. It was one i could never quite sell Erik on.

I think it's why he basically quit blogging.

Now that I think of it, I'm sure it is.

For sure, they might be 'guilty' pleasures, but in reality, they're probably just embarrassing to a degree. I mean, this could all go south very very quickly.

I'll start off with "Cool Kids" by Echosmith.

If PR is to be believed - and it isn't - the group of siblings was influenced by Echo and the Bunnymen and the Smiths.

It's a nice idea, but I don't hear that anywhere. I'm assuming they where band their father liked, as he is the co-songwriter on most of the album's tracks.

The problem with the song:  it's catchy.

"Cool Kids" is at least three years old. I think I heard it about two years ago while in New York. I'm guessing it's somewhat popular (or was), as the official label video (below) has 82 million hits, and their original web video has another 28 million. Someone other than the breakfast area at the Mid-Town Residence Inn by Marriott has been playing this song.

Echosmith is a real life Partridge Family. Allegedly, they play all their own instruments and most of the are well-versed in multiple ones. I gotta respect that.

The lead singer - the sister; the chick - has an Anna Kendrick vibe.  Kendrick is a different guilty pleasure I have. But that would be for another post.


Sunday, July 30, 2017

Small Talk

Nothing too too much to report from vacation. Three full days and I haven't even been tempted to look at my work email.  That is both liberating and a little scary at the same time.

Our adventure started off with a delay at the airport. The problem with taking Jet Blue is that in Cleveland there is only one gate. So if there is a mechanical problem there are no other planes. Jet Blue only flies to / from NYC, Boston and Ft. Lauderdale from the 216.

While we waited (and waited) for word about when and how, both 710 and I took separate strolls, as the other would have to stay with our luggage. ....and to hear any potential update.

A woman next to me struck up a conversation. In short order, we found out we were both headed to the same destination. She - Monica - had never been.  We chatted about the town and what there is and isn't to do.

During this, an overhead announcement about something in the 'gray area'.  Monica laughs and goes, "did they just say the 'gay area'?".  Blobby's back went up, but he said nothing.

As it would turn out the laugh wasn't anything to which I perceived. During my walk, 710 spoke with Monica and it turns out she was meeting the woman she's been dating for almost a year, in Boston and driving right to Maine. She had asked 710 if we were married and thought it was cool that we were.  So far we have not seen her in town.

We've only been in Maine for the better part of one day - the first two were in Boston. So far I've been averaging about 25,000 steps per day, so I can basically eat whatever I want......or so I think.

Last night while at dinner, it was one of those meals where 710 and I barely talked. I was fascinated by the table of four women next to us. At least one of the woman only spoke in French. And at least one of the other woman only spoke in English. Yet the latter was speaking to, or answering questions from, the former. Clearly one could understand English while the other did the same in French, yet they never conversed in the same language.

When it came time for their check....or cheque, as the case may be.....they asked - if it wasn't too much trouble - for separate checks for all four of them. The key-ute waiter said it would be no trouble at all.  I turned to 710 and go: "he's lying".

Shortly afterwards, the key-ute waiter came to bring us our bill. I asked him if he could split it into four. He chortled.

He made both 710 and I burst out laughing when he came back with four of those black book thingies where one puts the bill. He totally made my night.

John got extra on his tip just for that.



Song by: the Dave Clark Five

Saturday, July 29, 2017

I'm the Cat

It's small sampling this week, but sometimes that is how it goes.

Sophie is fully capable of getting out from behind that door if she so chooses. 

Brother and Sister

And this was Shep's "new" favourite toy until he destroyed it.  He now has a new favourite toy....until he rips that to shreds. We are keeping the dog toy business afloat by ourselves. 



Song by: Jackson Browne

Friday, July 28, 2017

Untitled

No worries - I'm still alive (at least for now). Still I didn't have a blog post up around midnight, so I could see why you might think otherwise.

We are on the road. And as "luck" would have it, I had drinks with a friend last night.

Drinks. Plural. Four hours of drinks.

Well......three and three-quarters hours, because someone was late!  .....and it wasn't me.

More on that later.

I need b'fast, as nachos - no matter how loaded they may be - do not constitute dinner.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Have a Little Faith in Me

Imagine my surprise.

The GOP couldn't get a Repeal and Replace option through the Senate, so they went with a Repeal only scenario.

FAIL.

It's not a win-win for Dems or the folks from the U.S, but it's another dent in the McConnell-Dump armour. GOP controlled and they still can't pass any legislation - and yet, somehow, they keep getting re-elected.

I fear the worst - I mean, you've read this blog before, right? - but I wasn't quite expecting another stumble from the Right so soon after their last one.

Which senator will SCROTUS single out to threaten in his overnight tweet session?


Still - I'll take this as a win. We need it.


Song by: John Hiatt


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Sick Sick Sick

When your party is the majority and the Vice President still has to cast a tie-breaking vote to advance an extremely flawed bill on healthcare, you can try to spin it all you want, but it's not a win.  Not truly.

When you don't debate your healthcare bill in public or have any sessions on it - you're trying to pass something in secret, in the middle of the night - you've got a problem.

Actually, now WE have a problem. WE the people.

....and you're all pussies. The senate - not you.

For my own selfish reasons, I want any of the GOP healthcare initiatives to fail. Their success would lead to huge cuts to healthcare which means many many many job losses.  Dump never mentions that, dontcha know.

So yes, SCROTUS, you might get back at 'the black guy' but your unemployment numbers are going to climb, if not soar. I'm not talking just hospitals - now you have lesser use of pharmaceuticals, supply chain - beds, sheets, laundry, food, operating room equipment, radiology.......all those "ancillary services" will be taking hits in the pocketbook and with the passing out of the pink slips.

Oh - and you know how people "joke" about wait times up in Canada? Just wait.

People think physicians are not expendable with budget cuts - but they are. Actually, they're high up there, as it's the easiest way of cutting expenses: they make the most or your reductions. You don't have to lose a lot of them to save money, but you do have to shed them. So now, your chance of getting into a doctor is gonna take longer. Which mean your emergency departments are going to be even more back-logged than they are.

The general public is about to be screwed......and not one of those good ones where it feels good. Nope - this one is going in dry.

But bully to you SCROTUS - you showed the black guy......and you weren't even running against him. Except you were. Because he was everything you're not.......and not just his skin colour.

On the other hand......and I've said it before:  I almost need the GOP to win this. I need their massive cuts. I need the layoffs. I need the country to get sick. Sicker.  I need the country to get mad.

This is nothing about his base. All those deep red states - the poorer ones - now will lose Medicaid and all the services involved. Guess what, they'll bitch, but they'll still support El Douche, because, 'Murica!

No - this is about the complacent center or lethargic left. These are the ones who NEED to get angry. The ones who NEED to do something. Anything.

As odious as this administration is, they've actually put little on the table to rebel against. The Paris Treaty?  Their stance is offensive, but effect aren't really immediate - so it goes away.  The EPA? Same thing.  Unless you become a Flint or Charleston WV.

Other than that, this man is all hot air. That super duper secret plan to defeat ISIS is still secret. That wall has yet to lay one brick.  The travel ban /immigration stuff is repugnant, but unless your Hispanic or from seven mid-eastern countries, are you really affected, unless your au pair gets denied entrance to this country?

So now we are potentially about to have skin in the game. Not just a few, but a few dozen....million!

Passage of a repeal and potential replace could be a game change for this country - one way or the other. The question is - where will it fall for those who truly don't understand anything more than "'Murica"?

Hopefully this is the tipping point for people to get angry. Assuming they're not too sick to do so.



Listen - if there were a happy medium where there were true changes to the exchanges, I'd be ok....probably. But that's not how the GOP is every gonna structure this thing.

RESIST.



Song by: Queens of the Stone Age

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

It's Not Easy Being Green

Somehow I got "elected" to get a green belt in Six Sigma / Lean projects.

Yay?

On one hand, it is nice that my bosses think enough of me that this would be a great next step for me.

On the other hand - it's five full days of training, planning, presenting and then taking on a project (on top of my other two jobs) that will last 90 days.

Oh my.

My team is ok. One is great. One is fair. And one is a low talker.........yes, just like on Seinfeld. Sitting right next to her, I could not hear one word.  Honest.  I really don't know how she's going to be part of the presentation on day 5.

All that stuff on the wall is just part of our brainstorming work. Right now I'm in the data gathering phase. That is my favourite part. Excel sheets for days.

I won't bore you with the details as we go along. Maybe I'll do another post after they give me my green belt.


......there is a real belt......right?



Song by: Kermit the Frog

Monday, July 24, 2017

My Music Monday

I think for the time I'm done with new music as my on-going theme. Some I've heard and can't find, but mostly not much is grabbing me these days.

I'll pseudo-torture you with a song from the Buckingham McVie disk. It's co-branded, but make no mistake, it's a Lindsey Buckingham song through and through.

While I don't know it for 100% certainty, I know it was started before Christine McVie rejoined Fleetwood Mac back in 2014. My guess is, it was finished before she joined too.

I'm not really a gambling man, but if I had to bet $5, I'd say she doesn't even appear on the song.

Is "On With the Show" a classic song?  No.   Is it well structured?  For the most part, yes.  It has some decent qualities.

If the rest of the disk was closer to this, it'd have been a passable album.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Pardon Me

I gotta admit, I never even saw the hint of this coming:  the possibility of 'the pardon'.

I kid you not when I say - to a degree - my stomach has been in semi-knots when hearing this.

The fucking son-of-a-bitch is going to get away with everything.

It might not be this month or this year, but before he leaves office - or forced to leave - he is going to get away with every fucking thing he has done. Along with those shiteous spawn of his.

710 said this would never happen, as both side of Congress would be enraged at that kind of thing. Then as the last words were leaving his lips, his brain caught up with the thought.

The GOP driven 115th is spineless in any regard, even more so when it comes to SCROTUS, there is nothing they are going to do - even if they could.  The Dems are just useless.

But the thought of the scummiest family in America {seriously, I have more respect for Manson's brood} skirting the law, or outright breaking it and getting off scot free, skeeves me out......and pisses me off.....to no end.

I'd be ok with someone {not me} picking off his grown children, one-by-one, just to scare the shit out of SCROTUS, with him knowing that someone's coming for him.

------------------------------------------

.....and I can't let it go that Spicer is gone.  Good riddance.

I'm surprised at some of the social media chatter from those who disliked him and now kind of / sort of feeling bad for him and the unenviable position in which he was put.


FUCK. THEM.   And fuck him.


By many accounts, pre-Dump he was a smart man whom is peers liked. And some will go on record saying now they don't even know who this man has become.

Personally, I think it's clear you didn't really know him. If he can be swayed by power that much to become that vile of a human being - - then he has the spine of a jellyfish and has no moral character whatsoever.

My biggest regret is that the resignation happened in July and not in September when SNL was back on the air. Melissa McCarthy is missing a golden opportunity.




Song by: the Mavericks