Wednesday, August 24, 2016

After the Flood

All the up-in-armsness about Obama not visiting Baton Rouge earlier than he did.

I get it - it was kind of a dick move on his part. Certainly, you don't want Il Douche beating you to that punch - yet he did. But that said, his not going on time wasn't quite as bad as Shrub and Katrina.

With Shrub, he just ignored the entire situation - including the storm warnings.

Obama playing golf instead of going? Not the best move he's ever made. Maybe the Louisiana governor was right that he shouldn't be there that early, as it would impede rescue efforts. And there is something to that - even if I think he might have been covering for 44.

Yet the whole thing reminded me of a West Wing episode where Bartlett goes to Oklahoma (or Kansas?) after a tornado wipes out a town. And he won't leave readily. And he's read the Riot Act by CJ.

{there seems to be no video clip - or you'd be seeing it right about now}

After Bartlett says that these people need him, she kind of goes off saying "No! They don't".

She goes on to say, "they need the 50 hotel rooms we've taken, since they don't have homes, they need the police helping out instead of clearing streets for your motorcade".

Honestly, there is sense to all of this.

I get it might be of comfort to the citizens to see an authority figure, but meeting the president isn't really it - at least in my book.

If federal agencies are mobilized and the people are getting the help they need without the red tape - that is the biggest comfort and need of all. If Obama went to DC to get FEMA and all other relief agencies to get in gear, that says more (to me) than anything.

I think CJ also went on to say that the President should be in Washington helping create jobs that will pay the taxes to support disaster relief.

Obama should get his time off. I don't begrudge him that. He's still way more responsive than Bush and he didn't cover up the lies regarding communication of the events.

Still, you don't want the GOP playing up piddly ass crap like this, and they were kind of handed it on a silver platter.



Song by: Lone Justice

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Sweet Old World

Lord - look at that line.  ....and for cupcakes.

During my day of solo walking, I found myself going all the way from the hotel, to the Liberry of Congress....to the Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial and then down to Georgetown.

It was a hike.

I had not really planned on going to Georgetown Cupcakes, but I was now within walking distance. Three blocks further than I planned on going. And once you've walked 11+ miles, three blocks is farther than one thinks.

When I got there, I wasn't expecting "the line".

Back in 2010 when we got married, the plan was to have cupcakes from here for our wedding. A downpour and no Metro to Georgetown thwarted that plan. I decided to get in line to see how fast it moved to right that wrong from almost six years ago. Worse case scenario, I could hit another shop - Sprinkles - on my way back.

Ruckiry (not Jon's boss), the line was in the shade. Had it not, I would not have stayed 30 seconds.

Je didn't time the wait, but it wasn't that long, though I did start to think about what a potential waste of time this could be if the cupcakes were even just average. I've said before, this is a great business model: ~$3 a pop and by the time you find their iffy you're already out of the store. I've made many a iffy....or downright bad - cupcake.

Yet I remain forever hopeful.

I was also worried with this crowd that there would not be any product left to purchase. Silly me.


And this wasn't even all the racks.....or the huge display case.

I am 99.999% sure I purchased more than I planned (or needed), but fuck it. I was finally there and had walked 11+ miles. I deserved it.  .....or so I keep telling myself.

There was no way to walk all the back to the hotel without fear of them succumbing to the heat - as it was almost 100F.  I opted to take the bus. With none in site, I walked until one caught up with me - so I got another good 1.5 miles in. Still the bus with a/c was nice. I had no idea where it was actually going, but it was headed in the general direction I needed to be.

Oddly, we ended up not consuming one of them while in town. Our last night of vacation dinner was late and we had no desire to eat more. They would keep.

Sunday night - at home - we each had one. I was fairly impressed. It was a good cake to icing ratio. If you're not an expert (like me!), you might not know that most places pile on the frosting where it is impossible to eat the dessert with out a fork and plate. Usually the frosting is too sweet and there is never enough cake - nor is it moist enough.

All the elements of good were here. At least for the one each we sampled.

I got a variety - so we will see if this holds true across the cupcake spectrum.


And while you'll think I'm pathetic to stand it such a line, I'll let you know the line was twice as long to get into Ripley's Believe it or Not.  ....and for what?  A wax statue of Michael Phelps or Ronald Reagan?

Now who's pathetic?


Song by:  Lucinda Williams

Monday, August 22, 2016

My Music Monday

Digits. Numbers. Whatever you want to call them - tis the theme.

Lori Carson isn't the biggest named artist. Just one I have liked for - yikes - 2+ decades. First, when she was a semi-member of the Golden Palominos and then as a solo artist.

Carson has some strong material and strong albums. As she went on, she had great songs....but over all iffy disks. Her last two albums were just not hitting any mark for me.

But somewhere in there she made her album, Stars.

It's one of those middling kind of albums that had a handful of good songs, but a enough iffy ones that it is not a full disk to which one returns.

That said - I'm still a fan of her song "16 Days".

To say it's low-key would be an overstatement. It's nice and all, but it's 4/4 time and the vocal maybe just an iota above sotto voce. But I like the phrasing and the vocal and instrumental arrangements.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Memorial

I'm just posting an image today.

Yesterday was a long and hot one. ....and Blobby didn't wear a hat or sunscreen. I think I'll be ok. I have a nice base from the beach.

The thing with DC is, I've done most of it before. But I was in an outdoor mood. 710 was not. He went to a few galleries, I walked. And walked. And walked.

I ended up at the Lincoln Memorial - which is always a favourite of mine. I wanted to to Arlington Cemetery, but it was sooooo hot, I couldn't do it.

I have taken this shot before on other visits, but the colouring this time was really nice and it was pretty clear.



The image doesn't pick it up very well, but you can see the Capitol dome. Most the scaffolding has come down.



Song by: Michael Nyman

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Nothing

I got nothing.

Actually, I have plenty, but as vacation week enters its last few days, it is quite possible that I'm drunk at 22:19.

Being as such - allegedly - I have no desire to formulate a thought out or semi-well written post. Nor could I should the desire be there.

On an unrelated note:  if ever in DC, I recommend Capital City Brewing Company.

The service is fair, as is the food. But the beer....well......I liked. A lot!  Especially the Red, Wheat & Blue.

I fear it might be seasonal - as it has straw and blue berries. And it's not on their website menu. I've had blueberry beer before, but with unfavourable results. This was not the case this time.

And with a high alcohol content rate, well.......it all turned out very nicely..............for me.

Due to nothing whatsoever that we could see, our five hour journey from OBX back to DC took us 7.5 hours. Blobby was very very very unhappy. It made for a stressful trip.

I'm hoping for a better tomorrow and Sunday.....and Monday.

Perhaps Sunday's post (tomorrow) will be better than today.



Song by: Depeche Mode

Friday, August 19, 2016

No New Tale to Tell

First off - if you plan on reading the 'new' Harry Potter book, you might want to skip this post. I will give no spoilers, but I will take no prisoners either.

Secondly - I get that this was written as a play, and not a novel. I try to distinguish between the two. But when you've got a series of seven novels behind you, it's hard not to take some of that into this new territory.

I purchased the book the first weekend it came out, but hung on to it until vacation, that I would read it while lounging around. As it turns out, it is a quick read: maybe five hours over a 24 hour period. It took more energy to lug the book (yes, a physical book) to the beach than it did to read it cover to cover.

While J.K. Rowling has top billing, I'd suspect (or would like to) that this is because Potter is her creation. Her writing or storytelling has never been this weak. So I also suspect that the damage is mostly done by "co-authors" John Tiffany and Jack Thorne.

There was potential with the Cursed Child, they just never ran with it. The authors found it more important to use past references - and dialogue - as exposition for those who might come to see the play who have never read, seen or heard of Harry Potter. It's frightfully annoying.

Taking place 19 years after the Battle of Hogwarts, it basically picks up at the end of the Deathly Hallows....right at the train station. I won't go into details, but most of the major players show back up - even in and after death. Apparently, the authors were not confident enough in their storytelling - or their audience - to craft a tale without resorting to popular constricts. I suppose maybe the box office would be stronger with that familiarity, but the idea is weaker.

Had the three authors developed the would-be story, the Cursed Child would have been a great companion piece to the Harry Potter series. But they didn't.

Again, no spoilers: two of the main characters are the sons of Harry and Draco Malfoy. But Scorpius (yes, I know....but we have to live with that name), isn't Hermione in terms of being an overachieving student, yet he somehow has this knowledge of Hogwarts, history and Harry down to the minutiae. And he pulls out the slightest detail at times of great duress. Again, this is all to recall aspects from most of the previous seven texts. It's allegedly to bring context to the current story, but it's just to back-fill their non-story.

And what 13 year old kid says he want to "seduce" a girl. I found it profoundly creepy. It's a toss-away line almost, but yet here it is....sticking with me.

Even with the "new" story, most of it has been done before. But since they borrow so heavily from the others, the new part seems highly diminished.

The Cursed Child is not a fitting companion piece. It's a money-grab. Plain and simple.



Song by: Love & Rockets

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Shopping with Blobby

Yet another installment in the drudgery that is everyday shopping. The camera-phone makes it a bit more fun - though I get looks whenever I take pics of products. Like I care what people think!


The brand. The product. The teflon?

I'm all for oil or water-based lubes......but Teflon?  I don't need Viagra to get a stiffie, I certainly don't need a DuPont based product to get it up.

And dry?  That's why spit is still the best.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Forever Lost

We are down in North Carolina  - home of the HB2 hatred - but for sun and fun. Mostly sun.

It is now Wednesday, and I haven't logged onto my laptop since Saturday......not for fun.....not for work. It's been nice disconnecting.

But I realized last night I had no blog post for today. I had to get cracking.

Yesterday we were at Roanoke Island, home of the Lost Colony. While at the visitor's center (mostly because it was air conditioned !!!) there was a fimstrip - ok, they don't actually have those anymore) on what may or may not have happened to the habitants of Roanoke Island and why they disappeared somewhere between 1587-1590.

Better yet, they had an interactive section where visitors could jot down their thoughts. I was going to be a smart ass and write down "UFO".  Then I saw the other ones.....and many were much better than my own.


Alexis and I have much in common.  I like the commitment to detail about their hats.

Topical - as everyone (save me) loves zombie shows. 

Topical - back in 1590 - when James White (see title image) returned to find all had disappeared

This one was my favourite - or so I thought. For those unaware, J.J. Abrams created the television show LOST.

This one ended up being my fave. I literally LOL'd at the visitor's center.



Ok. I'm back to the beach this morning for a nice long walk and to even out my burn.


Song by: the Magic Numbers

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Ad of the Month

A long time ago, I tormented you with the possibility of doing an Ad of the Month segment.

....then promptly forgot about it.  But since I'm bored - and that's always dangerous - I thought I'd try to resurrect the idea. We will see how it goes.

I don't even know what to say about this one. It just kind of works on several perverted levels.

Monday, August 15, 2016

My Music Monday

It's a numbers game this month.

For no good reason, I've had the Romantics'  (my lord, they have a website and are still touring - with the likes of Night Ranger and Loverboy!) "One in a Million" stuck in my head.

Circa 1983, the song is better than their "Talking in Your Sleep" and not nearly as overplayed or annoying as "What I Like About You". If they had other songs they were lost on me.

"One in a Million" is one of those semi-guilty pleasures. It's got a hook, but still not horribly definable than most (post) new wave groups that were flooding the airwaves of the time.

I'd never seen the video for it until I searched it out for here.

Horrible. Yet, again, not horribly original from anything from 1983. A very typical video for this type of band and genre.  And oy - the hair!

And while clearly, they lip sync the song, you can still tell (or bet / assume) that the lead singer has a speech impediment of some kind.  Look - I swear he has some slushy esses going on - which would just send Meredity over the edge.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Disarm

Shortly after the Pulse nightclub shooting, Rebecca suggested we meet up in DC for the newly announced Disarm Hate Rally.

I committed to nothing.

As it got closer, it seemed like we were going to be in DC at that time, but didn't tell Becky. I "thought" (oh yes, quotes!) I wouldn't tell her and that we would surprise her at the rally.

She didn't show - so we were the surprised ones.

It is hot hot hot in WDC.  And out on the Potomac Park, there is nary a tree. So, August....in DC....at 11:30a.....in an open field and not a cloud in the sky.

Disarm the Hate?  Disarm the Stupidity people.

Perhaps it was due to the heat. Perhaps it was due to having this when Congress is not in session (the town and many who work in that arena are not around either), but it wasn't overflowing with people. I also don't know how they got the word out. Had it not been for Becky, I'd have never heard boo about it all.

As it turns out not many others did either. I'm guessing 300 folks in all. Though the organizer's site said 10,000.  As much as I'd have loved for it to have been that many, no one benefits from that kind of fallacy.

That is such a NOM tactic.


There were probably 10,000 people on the Mall......over the course of 6-7 hours, but not where or near the rally was held.


In reality - there was a port-a-john for every 10 people. And that's kind of sad - even if the heat inside had to be stifling.

There were some good speakers (though if you're going to rip off Lin Manuel Miranda's Tony speech, you should at least give him partial credit) and iffy iffy talent.

But it was fun to people watch.




....and this man unfortunately stood outside the rally area.


...and yes, I do mean unfortunately. Besides liking a good debate, I'm 100% sure that gun elimination isn't on the table, and that wasn't even a talking point at the rally. This man's take might have been well formed and interesting.

Gun control, education and mental checks were discussed.

The guy with the cross that said REPENT SINNERS, well, I'm glad he did stand outside the rally area.

Truth be told, the most popular place to be is where they were handing out water. With 100F heat, it was important to stay hydrated.

My most favourite part of the rally was the


The shirt was already soaked with sweat, but the cold water felt good.

I truly think the problem with the rally was timing. August in DC was part of it, but the call to action was too late. The Orlando shooting was almost two months ago. That was a lifetime ago - and you truly need to strike while the iron is hot. Sad but true.

Shootings in Dallas, New Orleans and a bombing in Nice happened since Pulse. People have no attention span.  I totally get it is not easy to get permits, get the word out and coordinate a large-ish event, but you'd have had better turn-out with a quick off the cuff rally than you did yesterday. Still I applaud them for doing it.

I'd say any press is good press.......but I'm not sure there was anyone there to notice.



Song by: the Civil Wars

Saturday, August 13, 2016

12 of 12

So I'm doing my 77th 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 sometimes Jim) and myself - that I know of. 

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


05:45.  Splitting headache. 

Not the start of the day I was hoping for, as it was only the second day I have taken off in eight months. I didn't sleep in and I had someone taking a chisel to my head. 

 08:00.  Ready to go away. 

08:10.  Having to say goodbye to Soph. 

We put on the doggie kitty cam to see. So far she hasn't wandered in front of it while we've been logged on. I miss her. 

11:50.  Lunch. 

Clearly in Somerset, PA getting rid of the kid is more popular than the education component. 


14:33.  Urbana, MD

Clouds on the horizon. It would soon downpour. 

15:20.  Hot. Hot. Hot. 

This is not the hottest it would get. 

15:45. Checking in. 

Mayflower Hotel.  Not the Eliot Spitzer suite. We got an amazing room. Low floor, unfortunately, but it is a sweet suite. 

17:15.  A big white house. 

Nice cloud placement. Nice blue sky. I didn't even have to use a filter.  Hot as hell. 

17:55.  Signage. 

Stopped here for water.  I love that this sign is not only necessary, but that it had a design team. Still, much in DC is restricted airspace, so I totally get it. 

18:40.  Hotel Hallway Cool Off. 

The A/C was blowing. It was 104F out, and 114 heat index. 

20:00.  Dinner. 

Pasara Thai. OMG. So good. Nice place. Great service. 
As it turns out: medium spicy is relative. It is wicked hot. But good!

Because what else do you eat when it's hot out - hotter fud. 

 21:45.  CVS self-checkout 

For provisions. 


....and your Baker's Dozen.....

22:15. Back at the hotel. 

This is just the sitting area. There is a separate bathroom. Separate closet. Separate wet bar. And of course, the bedroom. 

I've had apartments that were not even as big as the sitting area. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

Site of the Month

The New York Times is not actually my Site of the Month.

One of their stories / features is. A site within a site, if you will.

And yes, it's Olympics related. Who the fuck knew I'd have so many Olympic-related posts? Not me.

Anyhoo.....the NYT has a section that has 15 athletes with a variety of options of what sport in which said athlete might be participating.

Based on their body type alone, can you guess their inclusion to these 2016 Olympic Games?

Click here to find out. 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Courage

Another Olympic post.

Normally, anything we watch is on the DVR, which means commercials are pretty much a thing of the past. Thank you FFW button.

We are not taping any Olympic coverage, so the tv is on, we normally mute during commercials. As chance would have it, no one was paying attention when it went of sports to ads....and glad we didn't.

In the first sex seconds, the word 'transgender' was dropped. Both 710 and myself looked up from whatever we were doing.

I've never actually owned a pair of Nike anything, and most likely never will, but they can produce good ads....and even slightly historic ones.

A transgender athlete at the Olympic games is pretty cool. As history goes, it will be a blip, but I was impressed that Nike went to the trouble to focus on something that lately is only about bathroom usage in North Carolina.

Take 0:00:32 and watch.


 


Song by: the Tragically Hip

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Low Life

Honestly - you think he cannot be any more of a slime, or that he can sink any lower.....and yet he seems to surpass all our expectations.

This says more about our character than his. And by that, I mean that we have more hope and humanity to think that someone cannot be this vile.

But we were wrong. He can be.

He is.


Il Douche is a coward.

Plain and simple - that is what he is.

He beats the rap for saying things he could never do himself. And then denies that what he meant, after putting the idea in some asswipes head that will go out and do the work.

And let's make it clear - while he was talking about Clinton potentially selecting anti-Second Amendment judges, this goes beyond that. What I believe he truly means:  "if she's elected", then the Second Amendment "people" can go put a bullet into her.

But he is also a coward for not just saying it, though meaning it.

No one would dare call him a coward out loud.....save me.

Donald Trump is a fucking coward.

(and you know I'm serious, since I used and typed his name.)

He's crossed the line, moved it and crossed it again, so many times, the line is now meaningless - though to hear any media commentator or their guests on yesterday, they'd say differently. So many of them think his comments are beyond the pale.

Of course they are correct. But Il Douche caters to another faction - one most people I know, nor myself, cannot fathom his followers blind devotion, admiration and adoration. Logic and reasoning do not factor in here. In the slightest.

This, I think, would pose a problem for the Secret Service, no?

One of their protectees is basically posing a death threat against one of their other protectees. (I'm assuming "proctectees" is a word, of course.)  This has got to be new territory for them.

This instance - along with so many others....


yeah - like that one....

Still makes me wonder if he's trying to lose. Yes, it's been said before and it will come up again, but seriously - WTF?




Song by: the Police

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Arc of a Diver

What's the easiest way to ruin the hotness of an Olympic athlete?

After the event - say to the commentator, "It's great to do this, but it's not my identity. my identity is with Christ". 

{groan}

....and then have your teammate feed that quote right back when they ask him the same question.

Either they're christamatons or the second guy has nothing to say and just mimics his mentor / diving partner.

....and that diving partner's name????


Steele Johnson.

Before diving, he (or his parents) picked out his Nom du Porn.  ...and btw......the way he carried himself.....it's gay porn he'll be doing.  Trust me on this.

I'm not sure how Christ will like them apples.

Before he made the quote, I was going to make this post about David Boudia.

He's short, but cute. And straight.



But then he opens his mouth....and it's pretty much kaput.

I know very little about diving - the mechanics of it, that is. I took a phys ed diving class and probably would have dropped it had it not been for the hot instructor. He was overly friendly to me - including offering to help me with my math class. Only after the fact did I realize I probably missed the not so subtle signals he was batting right at me.

I am not aware enough to know where I am during a flip. So much so that I never actually entered on anything that wasn't my back.

Once, off the 3 meter springboard, I hit the water so hard, Jeff, the instructor, jumped in because I didn't come up.  I wasn't knocked out. I was just swearing underwater.....for a really really really long time.

While Boudia has a great body, here it just looks downright creepy. I don't get the appeal of guys who like Tom Daley.

Still, Boudia and Steele Johnson (hehehehe) were quite impressive in their synchronized diving....even if they only got silver.

Silver.

Where's your g-d now, Davey????



Song by: Steve Winwood

Monday, August 08, 2016

My Music Monday

Numbers is the theme. And I'm trying to be a little more original than just doing something too too obvious.

I don't know from Local H. Traveling through Columbus years ago, I heard their song "24 Hour Break-Up Session" on what used to be CD101.

I never heard them before....or since.

I liked the song, but clearly not enough to do any further investigation.

As I have no real knowledge or background on the band, I don't really have much to say - so I'll just leave you with the song.

Sunday, August 07, 2016

the Gymnast, High Above the Ground

People can oooh and aaaah over Sam Mikulak all they want.

He's cute enough. He's athletic enough. But he's no Danell Leyva.

I was going to say we stayed in and watched some of the Olympics last night, but that made it sound like we changed / cancelled out plans to do so.

We had no plans. We discussed a movie, only to find there is little out there to see. So we made dinner and plopped ourself in front of the boob tube.

It turns out it was the male boob tube, as men's gymnastics was on.

Yes, these guys are cute and cut, but none of them meet my hight requirement.

I forgive all these things in Danell Leyva. He's smooth by choice - in parts of his body. I'm not 100% sure the others can grow chest hair....or leg hair. He's Cuban - so he's got points there. And he doesn't need a boost to get to the high bar at the start of his routine.

It's the little things really.

And man - is. he. handsome.

Oddly enough, we caught some of the Olympic trials and I saw he didn't make the team, so colour me surprised when last night, there he was. It turns out the guy who beat him out of that spot, blew out his knee in practice and lo and behold, Leyva has potential to get Gold.......and Zika.

I saw his parallel bars - which were ok. His high bar routine - considering I know next to nothing about the technical aspects - looked pretty fucking amazing. And he seemed to be happy with it. It was after he was done that kind of caught my attention.

I'm all for backstorying shit. Not one other USA male gymnast looked at him, acknowledged his routine, let alone talked to him. And vice versa. It's like Mean Girls - with chalk, workout gear and penises.

And here's the back story:  I bet the others of Leyva's inclusion in the ESPN Body Issue right after the 2012 games.

.....and those boys should be jealous.





Jealous.....and a little confused about how when they see these they feel strangely tingly inside.

Clearly, besides having a great body, Danell is talented. I could never do the pummel horse one-handed, let alone while remembering, and being able, to cover my junk.

...and looks like he has big feet. And you know what they say about guys with big feet.   ......big boots!

I kind of hope he gets the gold.




Song by: the Decemberists