Tuesday, January 31, 2017

When They Came For Us

My friend Jeremy has helped me change up my political posts.  No longer will I be only calling Dump, Dump.  No - Jeremy gave me this little nugget:


It has a nice ring to it, no?

Jeremy said he was at National Airport peeing next to Teddie Cruise Cruz. He was somewhat lamenting that he might prefer Ted to CheetoFührer.

Isn't it sad when one feels that way. I might actually agree with my friend. When it comes to different levels of evil, it's hard to discern what might have been.

So Dump has taken on the women with his abortion executive whatever. Then Muslims got own executive order - though he swears it is not a Muslim ban....though it is.

They've already eliminated the Jew out of Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Allegedly next it's the gays.

A Washington Post reporter claims there is an anti-LGBT executive order on its way - though the contents are not clear on what it might contain, though a ban on adoption might be part of it.

Sean Spicer (Ari Fleischer's less attractive and meaner-spirited cousin - and yes, you should read that as a 'double ouch!....for both of them') sat at his press briefing dodging the questions like the pussy he is.

If you're going to be the administration of evil - then just own up to it.

Yes - back to another Hitler reference, but that whole Martin Niemöller "they came for....." quote just seems to ringing truer each and every day......and it's coming at breakneck speed.

We're at Day 10.

Song by: Shiny Toy Guns

Monday, January 30, 2017

My Music Monday

The last of the cringe-worthy posts.  I'm not quite sorry to see it go, though I had a number of more in-line had the month gone longer.

Bernard Sumner. Johnny Marr. Neil Tennant. Chris Lowe. Together.

What could possibly go wrong?

It was a four-song cd single. Actually, it was one song with multiple mixes:  "Getting Away With It" by the newly formed group, Electronic.

The problem with having Neil Tennant as your vocalist is that no matter what you do, you're just going to be the Pet Shop Boys.

Electronic went on with Sumner and Marr, but Tennant was only on two or three songs. With Sumner doing vocals, Electronic seemed to be New Order 2.0 - not that I'm complaining.

I as intrigued by "Getting Away With It", but it was 1991 and I spent a lot of that time inebriated.

In theory it is a good song. I like the New Order element (it doesn't really have a Smiths element, even with Johnny Marr). When it comes down to it, not only do I only end up hearing mostly Pet Shop Boys with this, I can easily - easily !!!! - break into an Ethel Merman rendition of this, as Mr. Tennant makes it a very easy transition.

There are way better Electronic songs, and while I embraced the song as a drunken young adult, I still slightly cringe when it rotates through.

Sunday, January 29, 2017


Day 9.

Still keeping score.

Foreigners. Immigrants. Refugees.  Denied.

Oh, I get what Dump thinks he's doing. I get what his supporters think they know what he's doing. Short answer is: they don't.

Of course, the ban on entry to the U.S. isn't on everyone - just Muslim countries. I don't know what percentage of a country of citizen who are Muslim apply to this ban, but 3.3 million or more are American. Not in America, but American.  Where should they go?

And if Dump is being truthful to you all - and I think we can all agree he wouldn't know the truth if it peed on his face - it is not all Muslim countries. Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen are the ones on the list.

Make no mistake, where U.S. businesses have lucrative interests are not:  UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia seem to be fine for entry.

We can pretend this is all terrorist related - but if that were true, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Lebanon seem to be off this list. You know - the three countries from where all of the 19 terrorists from 9/11 originated.

If you're looking as ISIS origins - we are still not covering the bases:  where is Saudi Arabia (again), France, the UK, Morocco, Tunisia and Dump's motherland - Russia?  Oh yes, Russia has over four times as many ISIS fighters amongst them than Libya.

And those pesky green cards are off the table. Yes, the "executive order" bars green card holder entry into the U.S. if they are from those seven aforementioned counties.

Yes, Dump's order keeps out kids fleeing war torn areas......and those thousands of pesky terrorists. The ones that still haven't truly materialized here.

And for all of you going "yayyy" to that, and say, 'because of him we won't have those terrorists' you also don't get other things.  I'd say you don't get the scientists who are doing incredible work here, but you none of you believe in science or facts, so, let's get you where it hurts........literally.

Under my employ, I have any number of physicians who are foreign born and trained. Incredible providers in specialties that some patients wait months to get into see.  One of my departments, I do not have one U.S. born physician. This ban could literally shut down an entire specialty in one of the largest medical organizations in Ohio.

On Friday, I had to issue a notice to all of them not to travel outside the country for the foreseeable future, as there is no guarantee of re-entry. They've literally been cut off from their families who are still living abroad. That is assuming these docs are not kicked out - even though legally here.

So, when you're ill and can't get into see a physician for your ailment, or can't get into the top rated one you want to see.........too fucking bad. Go see the nurse practitioner at the Minute Clinic.  Oh wait - you won't be able to.....since those positions need physician oversight.

I suppose the problems of those docs won't matter much anyway, if the ACA repeal happens.

I applaud mayors of Boston, Columbus and the likes. Still saying they will accept refugees - but all that is for nought since detaining at airports seems to be a thing now.

Still the underlying theme is scary. Balk all you want at the Nazi Germany comparisons, but starting to identify and target people of race and religion - and showing your papers. Then there is the controlling / limiting the press and relying on propaganda. It all seems like a pattern if you ask me.

I'm sure it is all coincidence but the White House had no mention of Jews on Holocaust Remembrance Day, but didn't because Dump "didn't want to offend the other people the Nazi's targeted and killed".

Had that been said in front a faux brick wall with a mic, there would have been a two drink minimum.

I'll give this to Dump - what took Hitler half a decade to do, he's done in nine days.

I hope you're all happy..........because I'm sure Dump is.

Song by: Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Brown Eyed Handsome Man

Not AS tough of a week at work, but this cold has been draggin' me down. I left work early on Thursday (by an entire two hours!) and worked from home yesterday.  I kind of miss working from there. And Shep loves it, as he doesn't have to be crated.

And the week had a few good photo ops.

Handsome man.
....and he knows it. 

Hanging out.....but at a respectable distance.

Waiting for his #1 dad to return.
.....and then.....and then......the pillow just exploded!

Hanging out in the kitchen......at a respectable distance.

Shep's new nighttime leash. 
It's freaked out at least one neighbor.....oh, and it can go into flash mode. 

Bedtime Make-out Session. 

Song by: Buddy Holly

Friday, January 27, 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!

Calling this Record of the Month might be stretching it a bit. Looking back, it seems I have not done a new release since August of 2016 !!!!!

To be fair, in my year-end wrap up of music, I said the pickings had been slim, and they were. So far for 2017 there are releases on the horizon for which I'm fairly excited.

Had I known Beulah, the first release from John Paul White since the demise of the Civil Wars, had come out last August, I'm 99% sure it would have been my top pick of 2016. As it is, now it stands as a contender for best of 2017.

My lord - what a great disk!!!

Ok - you know I find fault with most anything to a degree, but there isn't much to pick on with Beulah.

White starts strong with "Black Leaf" which I just loved from the start,  then he moves into "What's So.  The song starts of very Muscle Shoals-y, which could go either way depending on if you like that style, but I'd say a third of the way into the song, I was hooked. It is by far the best song on the disk....and that's saying something on a disk like this.

Maybe that's the thing with this album too.  On "the Once and Future Queen", it starts ok, and I was afraid it would be a milquetoast song....but as it goes along, it's incredible. The structure changes and the 'verse' and 'chorus' are almost non-existent. There is no confined element so many songs / artists seem to stick to with some kind of formula.   ...and some of White's vocal phrasing just kind of keeps you guessing.

Ditto with "Hope I Die". It starts off in one direction, one I wasn't sure I'd like, but it changes gears too....and then back again. The start of the song is not necessarily my style, but as I was learning, it was important to not make quick judgments with JWP's songs. He figured out to keep me on the hook.

With an artist like White, who is known for the Civil Wars, I was afraid people would look at this disk as the 'what if' one....and how it might compare to a Civil Wars disk. I tried to go in differently, and I think that helped. Save for "Make You Cry" and "Hate the Way You Love Me", nothing fits his previous band's mold. And while I really like both songs, at first, all I could hear is how it would have been with Joy Williams' harmony, and I didn't get that (or want that) from the rest of the disk.

And folks - on iTunes, it's $5.99 !!!  It's a steal at any price, but c'mon.......put a crowbar in the wallet and get it. I don't think you'll regret it.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

More More More

I suppose it was bound to happen - I just thought it'd be Rhoda.

I mean, Valerie Harper had that brain cancer / six-months to live thing....three years ago.....and yet, she's still around. And ironically, Mary Tyler Moore was an octogenarian with Juvenile Diabetes.

...and oddly, Sue Ann Nivens is still plugging away.

I will admit to never being a fan of the Penis Van Lesbian Show. And I thought little of MTM on that show. That "oh Rob" line grew more tiresome with each utterance. Let's face it - Morey Amsterdam and Rose Marie were the stars of that show.

But I always had a soft place in my heart for Mary Tyler Moore Show. ....and it wasn't necessarily because of MTM.

Were there better foils than Rhoda and Phyllis or Ted and Murray? Or Sue Ann and Murray.  Or even Sue Ann and Lou.

Sure, she had funny moments, but she set-up the jokes more than she gave them. It was a great ensemble cast......though I will say, when she moved apartments and there was more "Georgette", my interest waned.

So many comedy retrospective shows always play the Chuckles the Clown funeral scene. Yes, it was good. But if I had to pinpoint one scene in that show that I loved, Mary is barely in it - and it is when Phyllis confronts Sue Ann for having an affair with her husband, the never seen Lars.

I only saw one of Moore's movies - and not the one you think. Ordinary People?  Too down for me. No - it was Change of Habit.  MTM being second banana to Elvis Presley......oh, and she played a nun!  Cinema doesn't get any better than that. The opening song was called "Rubberneckin'", as you might expect.

Oh - and I always reference Mary's take on getting a cold:  three days coming, three days with you, three days going.

BTW - I am at the second day of 'with you' phase.  It seems apropos.

Song by: Andrea True Connection

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Pay Attention to Me

So, in case you haven't been paying attention.......

  • ACA Repeal

Yes, Dump signed his executive order start repealing the ACA. Make no mistake, it will take 50 senate votes to repeal the ACA. But for all those of you turds who think that Dumpacare will be any better? First - he has no plan, other than something, "much better!".  The devil is in the details, isn't it?

Oh - and it takes 60 votes to replace.

Yes folks, it is harder to replace healthcare than repeal it - so there is your reality. That "much better" plan may never come to fruition.

And b.t.dubs.......when 18-22 millions people lose their healthcare, and the (re)newly uninsured go back into the emergency departments or hospital faulting on their bills that they can now no longer pay - - that cost comes back to...............wait for it.................YOU!

Indeed, it comes back to you in ways of increased premiums, of if you have an employer solution, you will be forced into a High Deductible Plan - and them deductibles are just gonna keep going up because your employer is gonna share that cost with.........wait for it.........................YOU!

You can thank Uncle Dump for that one.  ...and Tom Price, as he is one of the biggest detractors of the ACA.

And another note: it could cost up to $350 Billion (with a B) over the next decade to repeal the ACA. I thought the republicans were supposed to be fiscal conservatives. Then again, no cost is high enough to flip the proverbial finger to a black man who held the office.

  • the Keystone Pipeline is back in play
Lots of risk for the environment (more on that in a bit) for little pay off in terms of jobs. Oh, and Dump own(ed?) stock in Energy Transfer Partners, the company that is building the Dakota Access pipeline.

  • Women's Right to Choose

A room full of men. Not one woman around as Dump signs (another) executive order on funding that goes overseas if pregnancy terminations are performed. Or something like that. He's dipping his foot in the water to see how it plays here................three days after a march with countless women. It's not a mistake. It's calculated.

  • Comey is staying on as head of FBI under Dump
Shocking!  I think it's called Quid Pro Quo.

  • EPA Freeze
the Dump administration has instructed officials at the Environmental Protection Agency to freeze its grants and contracts, a move that could affect everything from state-led climate research to localized efforts to improve air and water quality to environmental justice projects aimed at helping poor communities.

  • Popular vote lies continue
Yes, he's still won, and he's still going on about this. Oh, and there is zero evidence that any voter / illegal voting when on en mass.  But for argument sake, let's say it's true. Dump says 2.4 million illegals voted. Clinton won the popular vote by 2.9 million. Dumpy is still off by half a million - just like he was off by that same amount he claims showed to his inauguration. Even when he defends his win he can't win.

.....and just so we're keeping score, we are on day four.

Oh oh oh oh - have you noticed, Dump is almost nowhere with out Pence?  He's at every executive order signing (and there are a lot of those - even for four days). But Mikey-boy is even sitting next to Dump at "church".

....and you wonder who is actually making the decisions in that house.

Song by: Grand Funk Railroad

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

the Facts of Life

Every time I think my persistent funk since November 8th has lifted even in the slightest, I do something stupid by watching or reading something.

I know - I said I have stopped reading a lot of the news, but some things are unavoidable. Stupid Facebook or overhearing people talking or friends actually asking you shit about politics interferes with all that head / sand burying.

So - this entire shit-fest that is the Dump Propaganda Machine™ is just frightening as fuck.

While clearly I don't agree with repealing the ACA, or probably anything else the man and his administration is going to do, the absolute scariest is the easily (and frequent) lies - and the press, and/ or potentially lack of it.

Yes, it's fun to compare the attendance of the inaugurations, but to be so thin skinned about something that ultimately does not matter in the slightest is insane. This is what they're drawing the line in the sand over?

Not only did they get the attendance wrong at both Obama's and Reagan's swearing-ins wrong, they made up numbers that the Washington Metro put out on ridership. And when some reporter(s) had the audacity to question the new pussy (someone should grab him) press secretary, he fucking walked out the press room.

Here's a little known thing: the press briefings are to end when the press says so, not the press secretary.

And the lying. JFC - enough with the lies. Though Spicer says his 'intention was to never lie to you' {meaning the press}.  He just happened to do it four times in five minutes.

Which of course brings us to alternative facts. Or spinning lies.

But dude - your guys 'won' the White House. Who cares if fewer people showed up to his party. He still gets the job. Blame the weather if you want, but don't say there were a million more people when there were not.  There is video of Pence walking the route with block after block of empty stands.

Save your lies for something big!

This all bothers me. And the yelling at the press and saying they'll be banished basically unless they agree with this administration and only write nice things.

Now personally, I'm confounded by all of it. The press has let Dump off the hook more times than I can even potentially count on the WOPR {it's a War Games reference, people!}.  They almost never held him to a straight answer and barely ever stood up to him when he told a blatant untruth.

This press corps it the best thing to ever happen to any administration, because I don't see Dump's behaviour ever changing.

Yet, save a few editorials - which 710 insisted on reading to me, as I am still head-burying here - seem adamant about holding feet to the fire......which is all well and good.....IF they actually did it.

Still my unrest is real. The tone is tell the lies enough until they become truth. To control - truly control - the press until we are Germany at Poland's door circa 1939.

Yes, another fucking Nazi reference, but it's warranted. Truly warranted.

You know it's bad, when I - a fatalist - thinks this the most fucked up shit ever. It's not even subtle and barely anyone is taking note.

The whole thing with his taxes. Now he will never release them - his stooge Kelly says so. "People don't care....they voted for him."

I'll give her that. Those who voted for that butthole don't care, but somehow thing speeches given to Goldman Sachs should have been.

But it goes beyond that - or should. Persistently calling him out on his first broken promise of his presidency should be shouted from the rooftops over and over and over and over.  And over again.

Personally, I'd have more respect from Dump if he admitted he liked being pissed on. Clearly nothing is changing a large portion of the voting public's mind on him. They'd probably even try it - along with their newly purchased rubber sheets from the Ivanka Trump Collection™.

I'm all over the place on this shit today. Dump makes it hard for rationale people to focus, which could easily be part of his plan. Divide. Conquer.

The thing is: it's time to stop ignoring the problem. It's not going away. We have to deal with it, call them on it. Make their lives as miserable as they plan to make ours.

It's a fact.

Song by: John Wesley Harding

Monday, January 23, 2017

My Music Monday

Songs that make you go - ewwwwww.   Cringe-worthy.

Oh where to start I've already done three....and now two more, including today.

There is a difference between something that makes one cringe and something that one might loathe. We did the latter a few months back.

Plenty of songs are out there that make one wince a little.

In the U.S. the Cardigans broke-out with their song "Lovefool". It's slightly catchy, but slightly annoying.  The bubble-gum melody and the cutesy-girl vocals should be left to (and with) Gwen Stefani's solo crap. It's not appealing.

The "joke" is, that neither the band, nor singer Nina Persson, seem really to be that group. Their subsequent sound was harder edged, and when they did pop, it was not saccharine-y. Perhaps they were smart enough to know that this was the stuff that got on radio and MTV and they took a dive for the bigger cause.

"Lovefool" is one of those songs that I don't immediately turn off, but I don't go out of my way to play.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

March Into the Sun

Part of me feels like I missed a big opportunity not going to DC....or Chicago or Boston.

By all accounts, Cleveland had a decent turn out for the Women's March. Clearly not as big as those aforementioned cities. Even my sister-in-law went to the one in Charleston. And I had friends or family who attended in New York, San Jose, Columbus, Portland and Atlanta as well.

There were also a bunch to headed to DC for the main event. I mean, after all, it was deemed, the Women's March on Washington. The DC Metro reported that yesterday, there was 82,000 more riding their trains than on inauguration day.

Allegedly there were over a half-millions people at the DC march (some reports of 650k). So many so, that people didn't wait for the official route, as it moved to slow and took over other avenues and streets.

I certainly didn't see these crowd numbers along what few images I saw of the inaugural route. ....though Dump and his press secretary will tell you I'm lying misrepresenting.  Yeah.  And the Metro is fudging their numbers too ?

Our piddly-ass rally we went to last August.  Though to be fair - the one we went to might have had more port-a-potties.   ....and let's face it, the lack thereof is what would have kept me away from DC.

As it turns out, Becca and her youngest ducked out part way through the DC march. I get it. The crowd can be overwhelming.  ....and well.....Madonna.

Oh Madge. All for women's rights, she is. She's all against ageism and sexism. I mean, that's what she says is the problem against her. It's not. It's her shitty music. But somethings are easier to blame, I suppose.

I'm not sure how I feel about the turn-outs in other regards.

Had this event happened the last week of October, would the election have been different?  But on the other hand, did anyone believe - or want to - that Dump would be where he is now?  Is that the difference? No one thought this kind of turn-out for this kind of travesty was necessary?

My big beef is the aftermath. While I think the march was great and it mattered, but the question is: to whom else?

Do you think anyone residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave is going "oh nooooooo.......the women don't like me?"

The problem is - he doesn't give a fuck.

Neither do the majority who reside at the other end of the Mall.  (and no, not the clerks at Things Remembered.)

Well, Dump does - in a way. It's a twisted irony with him. If he didn't care what people thought, he wouldn't tweet or speak at press events about it so much. Yet when it comes to actual action - he doesn't give a shit about anyone but himself. His supporters just don't see that yet.

The march is good for organization and a call to action, but for change in Planned Parenthood, ACA, Equal Pay or Education (just cross gun control off any list with this administration now), you're dreaming.

This fuck is going to be a long hard one. And with no lube. And it's gonna last four years.

....that said, I'm sorry I didn't go to the march. I'm not sure I could have handled being in DC with the administration - and lack of pooperies - but I'm sure I could have survived for a good cause.....and with a pack of Depends.

Song by: Echosmith

Saturday, January 21, 2017

You Are the Light

In these dark times, we always have Shep Saturdays. He and his sister (not pictured this week) are just sweetness and light - even when they're not.

Shep has been really good for both 710 and myself. Our work days are shorter, as we strive to be home with him. He is good company - unless he's eating a shoe or biting the carpets.

I was happy happy to not have watched a single minute of yesterday's inauguration. Save a few mockeries of C.H.U.D. Kelly whatshername, on Facebook, I missed all the comments too.

I tell ya - cutting out news and op-ed pieces has made my life less stressful.

......now, back to the Shep-man.

Petey's old bed. 

Shep has never used it once. It's a toy chest. 

710 being conquered by Mr. Shep after getting home from work. 

He's always so frickin' happy to see us when we get home....and vice versa. 

PetPeople bath time. 

We had a muddy day at the dog park. He's doing better at baths, or at least tolerating them. 

Doggie Matrix. 

Canine play date with Shep's best friend, Kooper. 

Song by: Long Justice

Friday, January 20, 2017

End of the Run

It's the end of an era.

A pretty fucking good one at that.

Obama was not a perfect president, but he came as close as anyone in my lifetime (so far).

The tenor of Obama's presidency was one of civility, strength, honor and doing what was right for man/womankind regardless of the fall-out.

Barack didn't hit all the marks all of the time, but I felt he did the right thing for the right reasons more often than not.

That is not a small feat.

I could sit here and point out all the things I thought he did well. No healthcare system is going to be trouble-free. You're talking about 300MM citizens. Yet, he made great strides. And if you've seen, in his last week in office, the ACA has more people for it than oppose it. I think they are now afraid of losing what they had.....without knowing what it might be.....if anything.

While I'd never vote for any politician based on some so-called gay agenda or issues only (and I do know people who do that), I was impressed at Obama's inclusion of the gay community in his policies and politics. It was not immediate, but when he got there, it was sincere. It was not to score political points, but for the same rights as other Americans.

By all accounts, Obama could have had a better working relationship with Congress. But by all observances, they had no desire to work alongside him either - and he still accomplished more than one might think, considering the impediments.

I won't leave out his wife either. I have to admit, I'm still stunned - yes, stunned! - that people fucking opposed her passion of eating healthier and exercising. What a monster she was!

Barack or Michelle could have said the sky was blue, and people on the Hill - and the hill folk - would have disputed it.

You wouldn't think a leader of the free world speaking eloquently would not be such a big deal - yet 44 is stuck between 43 and 45, and those are two reasons I stopped listening to much of NPR and nightly news.

U.S. politics has always been a down in the dirt(y) game. From 2000 on, the elections have gotten nastier, and candidate after candidate completely unqualified - though it hasn't stopped people from voting them in......then complaining about them before re-electing the same scum.

I did see Obama as a break in the cycle. And he was. Unfortunately, with his election and subsequent re-election, America got ugly and uglier.  So now we are here.

I will lament the loss of Barack Obama. I will revel in his legacy. While I do believe history will rank him as one of the great ones - I'm already there.

We shan't see another president like him in a while. Possibly not in my lifetime.

While the current state of being is less than optimal, I am proud to have experienced a man like Obama as my president.

Song by: Debbie Harry

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Fire Meet Gasoline

Ooooooh......we went to our first city public forum two nights ago.

Ok, technically it wasn't a 'city forum' but a larger neighborhood one, as "they" are developing an area adjacent to our 'hood.

The plan is for stores, restaurants, upscale housing and possibly a boutique hotel.  oooooh.

Oh - and an 8 story parking garage.

Have you ever seen the show Parks & Recreation?  One of their hallmarks is their forums.  Usually there are a handful of folks you see forum to forum, but others are sprinkled in there too. It's crazy conversation, usually indicative of nothing relating to the topic at hand.

And it's hilarious.

And as it turns out: spot on.

O.M.G. People b crazy.

I'd say there were about 90 folks at this shindig. 710 and I - like always - skewed slightly to the younger part of the crowd. I mean, this was a Gold Bond / Centrum Silver crowd. I suppose this is what some people do to get out on a Tuesday evening.

Mind you, the presentation wasn't perfect. It wasn't even fully formulated, as it was somewhere between the pre-planning and planning phase.  The firm had won the RFP, but other than that, buildings were concepts.....occupants were non-existent and one beloved bakery doesn't seem willing to reacclimate with owners after they tear down the existing building.

It was not far into the presentation before the questions / comments started coming.

A woman, who is also a neighbor, had very strong opinions on how to select and architect and what the style should be: ultra modern.  She and her husband have a very contemporary house, but the business district is 1920s. I don't know modern would work there, but......I'm also open to ideas. Lorna was not. She wad adamant. And she did not seem to like the idea that they would entertain other styles.  ......not that they're even vetting architects as of yet.

The few people younger than us were dismayed there would not be a park / playground.  "How will you ever attract younger residents if you don't have a playground.......even if it is just two swings?"  It all reeked of Helen Lovejoy.

From there it went off the rails.

"When are they going to paint that rusty old bridge?  They painted one side......but the other is still untouched!". 

Ok.  First......that bridge is about a mile from the development in question. It belongs to CSX. And it resides in another city. Oh - and these are business developers.

"Are you going to have dual traffic flow on Stokes?" (it's currently a 3 lane, one way street).  That street runs through two different cities - - and is even farther away from the aforementioned bridge.

It was fairly clear these two men didn't work for the city or any municipality. They're not city planners.

I bordered on amused and annoyed. I wanted to hear what these guys had to say about the development, but that got shut down as they tried to respectfully answer crazy ass questions that had nothing to do with anything. And of course, I was dying to hear what other nonsensical things would come out of the mouths of the crowd.

That said - we were moving in on the 90 minute mark with a slight end in sight and then to open it up to Q&A.  Ugh.  That could take forever, regardless of how entertaining it might be. It was now almost 22:30 and we still had not had dinner and it was boiling hot in the venue.

Still we laughed about how much it is like Parks & Rec.

I highly suggest, if you have the chance, go to one.

Song by: Sia

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Chelsea Morning

I suppose if I was as big of a bleeding heart liberal as I think I am, I'd be jumping up and down for Obama's commuting of Chelsea Manning's sentence.

Yet, jumping I'm not.

I didn't even mutter or think "oh, good".

I am torn on what Manning did as being admirable or whistleblower as opposed to treasonous. The reality it, war is a dirty business (yes, a business). It's not pretty, it's not fair - and the reality is, Manning couldn't possibly know what she released may have had bigger implications than she could possibly fathom.

I agree with Obama that Manning's sentence was excessive.

And while I seemingly gravitate towards the queer blogs, the people who are / were for Manning's leniency always brought up the transgender aspect. As if that was some kind of a free pass or a special accommodation for the circumstances for which she was charged.

That's where my bleeding heart stops pumping.

If we - as queer folk - want equal rights and not special rights, it goes with all the territory, though I don't think her sexual identity was the reason for her excessive sentence.

There is also that Julian Assange connection. That guy is a creep of creeps - who may or may not have truly contributed to the 2016 election. So that's still unforgivable. Assange did say he'd waive extradition if Obama pardoned Manning. I bet commuting the sentence does not count and he'll live forever in the Venezuelan embassy.

It seems my views have not changed a lot in the last 3.5 years.

Am I glad Manning is getting out early?  Yes, but due to harsh sentencing. Do I think she should have never been in prison in the first place?  I'm going with a 'no' on that one.

There is Dump Talk about rescinding Obama's commutation, but we'll see.  This "man" has such big fish to fry - this seems piddly. But the "man" is all about piddly. He has no vision on those bigger issues.

Song by:  Judy Collins

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


DNA is the building block of life.  And a tattoo for Moby....the blogger, not the musician.

For the holidays, I got 710 a doggie DNA test for Shep. Let me tell you  - it was not cheap.  I'm not complaining or anything, it's just I got a mid-range one and the others were way way more pricey.

710 did the work. He had to scrape the sides of Shep's mouth, with three different swabs.....for 45 seconds each.

Now, that doesn't sound so bad, does it?  

Look at your watch for 45 seconds. Three times.

Now try it with a dog who likes to each anything that is in his mouth.  It's like infinity +1.

On another note, 710 got me a DNA kit for the holidays. The ancestry.com one.

No one had to scrape my mouth, but I did have to spit into a container. I had to wait for the bubbles to go down on it to make sure there was enough saliva.

So you see all these commercials about how these folks thought they were from one part of the world, but found out they were another. It's like their family has been lying to them their entire life.

The potential weird part of the ancestry thing is: if other relations have done the same test, they can tell you.....or connect you.....or something.

I don't think that matters - as I know my sisters. Assuming they are my sisters. And assuming they are my only sisters.

This could be a good thing / weird thing for adopted kids.....who are grown and now find family this way. Or for that second family you always assumed your grandfather had who now discovers you.

...for the record, I only think one of those things could happen......as I'm not adopted.

Now my father always poo-poo'd my assumptions that his father had a second family, but for the life of me I never understood his devotion to his own dad. I'm not going out on a limb to say he wasn't the most likable man in the whole world.  He wasn't the most likable man in his own house - and he was the only man in his house.

So while it might have surprised my father to know he had a half-brother somewhere, I'd kind of raise my hand and say "nailed it". Little does the new half-half-half brother know that the family fortune was pissed away years ago.

Oh, it also tells you who in history you might be related to. ....and you just know it's gonna be someone shitty like Eva Braun.........or worse, David Spade.

In two weeks or so, we will find out if Shep is truly a Basset Shepard mix. Or if the test is reliable at all. I'm expecting it come back Husky, Poodle.

In five weeks or so, we'll find out if I'm the same thing.

I certainly feel husky.

Song by: Empire of the Sun

Monday, January 16, 2017

My Music Monday

It's Erik's theme this month. Songs that make you cringe.

Erik loves INXS, so his own theme is gonna come back to bite him in the ass............thanks to me.

Now, I like INXS too. Like, not love.  I own their music, but I can tell you this was the turning point for me.

I was fine.......for a while......with "I Need You Tonight", but after MTV played it for 7,402,882nd time (and that was just in the summer of '87), I was almost out.

I was totally out with the follow-up 'song', "Mediate", which I think "I Need You Tonight" just morphed into.

Lord, it takes it a step beyond 'cringe'.

Clearly someone got Michael Hutchence a rhyming dictionary and he used it for all it was worth. ...and then some.

And worse, someone got a guy in the band a Kenny G Sax™.

One might call the video an homage to Dylan (Bob, not Thomas). I might have thought that early on, but then I just scrapped that. You even have to figure Dylan was annoyed - had he ever watched this.

Ditto with the people at Websters.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Site of the Month

Almost three years ago I my Site of the Month was a Countries of the World Quiz.

I didn't do very well, though I did see flaws with the site itself. Yet, I kept playing.

Then a little while ago, they threw a new version at me. Countries of the World With an Empty Map.

Countries would fill in, as you identified them. It makes it a little harder when you don't see what exactly is missing, but that can actually be an advantage. It makes you think, it makes you strategize.

I do attempt to go continent by continent (or area of the world), though there are some things that go out of order - like if I fill-in 'New Guinea', I also then do "Equatorial Guinea', 'Guinea'  and 'Guinea Bissau'. ....just to get them out of the way.

Still, I did find a flaw - at least for me - that keeps me from achieving 100%.

You'll see even with 1:26 to go (you only get 15 minutes to do the quiz), my last choice -and it's always my last fill-in - is not a correct answer.  Or is it? 

Mind you - my keyboard does not allow me to put an accent over the 'o', but aren't they adhering to details just a little too much?  

If I put in Burma, I get credit for Myanmar. Surely they could give me credit for no ^. 

....and here is why I call bullshit on this oversight.......


79% of all people taking this quiz got 'Cote d'lovire' right??   That means they all have that ^ above the o.


Because of that, my 99% seems hollow. 

Still I play, because this game can soothe my OCD, while it also spurs it.  It's a complicated life I lead. 

Saturday, January 14, 2017


Saturdays are my safe place.

It was just a sucky as hell week. It was the week before and I don't see much change this upcoming week. So coming home to the ani-mules is the best part of my day.

Boomer in the bed he got for xmas. 

I told my sister it was way too big for the little guy. She said it's there for when Shep comes over.  As if that dog is going to lie on the floor. Sofa, chair or bed for him only - thank you!

Shep: squirrel hunter.  

Window to window.  For hours and hours. At least he doesn't bark at them. 

Shep getting water. Sophie safely ensconced on the other side of the door. Watching. Waiting. 

Moo-icide.  Murder. 

In theory it was a good toy purchase. The cow's tail was rope, good for tugging and swinging around. In the end (i.e. Shep at the stuffing out of the cow's face).   $8 down the drain. 

Sophie would like to ignore Shep here too.....but it makes that impossible. 

Today, weather permitting, Shep has a play date with his bromance buddy, Kooper. I want to see them play, but it is going to be in the low to mid 20s.  blech.

Song by: the Carpenters

Friday, January 13, 2017

12 of 12

So I'm doing my 82nd 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. 

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

05:25.  Grim, wet walk. 

Raining - and would be pouring before we finished. It was 53 degrees....in January. No worries, as was headed to 21 later in the day. 

06:05.  Someone is really excited for breakfast.

 07:10.  At my desk. Caffeine near by.

 11:25.  Administrator's Monthly Meeting.

It just felt like a soul crushing meeting.

 13:10.  Break time!!!

Yes, the Admin meeting lasted 100 minutes.

14:45.   I have a pistachio problem.

But it's still better than having a dark chocolate problem (which I also do have - just less so these days).

15:10. One my way to my second job. 

Oh yes, "they" gave me a second department for which to oversee. It's only been four days, but so far so good.....at least for now. 

 16:20.  Meeting on decreasing preventable medical mistakes.

18:00.  Putting on the boots.

My dress shoes stay at work during winter months. I use the boots to get to the car and back. It's all very Working Girl.  I'm more Joan Cusack than Melanie Griffith. 

18:20.  Stair Pie.

Its been on the stairs in the employee garage for four days now. I'm just waiting to see if anyone will do anything about it.  Clearly I'm not. 

18:40.  The Pizza Boy: He Does NOT Deliver.

You have to go pick it up yourself. Especially if you left work much later than expected and have no desire to cook dinner when you eventually get home. 

19:15  New Runner. 

I have hated our old one since time began. 710 ordered a new one. The old one is underneath it. He was just checking it out to see if we would like it.  I do. 

......and your Baker's Dozen. 

20:53.  In the mood. 

.....for sleep.  It's been one rough week. Though not ready for bed before 9p, because I'm not 83 - but I turned on the lights knowing I'd be up there before too long to get my beauty sleep. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

the Difference

What a difference 18 hours makes.

I watched Obama's 'farewell' speech. It was nice. It was good. It had great moments, but it wasn't great.

Sorry - it wasn't.

What it was, was a last taste of class, style and dignity from a president. Something that won't be seen for at least four years.

Allegedly, case in point, that 18 hours later with a "press conference" by Dump.

Admittedly, I watched none of the clips. Admittedly, I never ever every plan to watch him. While I will say, I'm kind of dying to see his first State of the Union, it is highly doubtful I will.

I did read about the "press conference", but could only take away bits and pieces. It seems by any news account, it was a shit fest. Hell, when Fox "News" (ok, Shepard Smith) calls out the incoming administration, you might be losing your base.

Granted - that will be short lived. And Dump supporters can lament the "main stream media" all they want, but when freedom of the press is truly shunned, then all you have is propaganda. And let's face it, when it comes to Dump, the so-called liberal media has been doing nothing than letting him get away with that......so they don't have far to fall.

But back to the two.

But the dichotomy of the two being so public in such a short period of time is.....well......unnerving.

I keep thinking of this upcoming presidency as some kind of anomaly - and it is - but one that is there...........forever.  History books.  A library in the future (as if he's ever been in one!). g-d forbid some kind of monument. Even the U.S. Hall of Presidents down in Disney will now have this dickknob.

I've done pretty well without reading the political news lately. I know that makes me part of the problem. I am burying my head in the sand when I can. Our friends, David & James, have vowed to not talk about politics, though admittedly they said, somehow it always steers back to it.

And it does. While we haven't made the same vow, 710 knows I feel too soul-crushed to discuss intelligently about someone who can't be discussed logically, let alone intelligently.

It's a pickle.

I feel your tears Barack.  I fear I'll be shedding many over the next term.

Song by: matchbox twenty

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Ad of the Month

This ad is actually a few years old.

I stumbled upon it once while probably watching Will & Grace reruns on Logo.  Well, I'm assuming....just a hunch.

Some of the Vegas ads are funny in their own right. Some are just so-so. But this one makes me smile more than laugh, which can invariably be more difficult.

While I'm guessing 87% of the gay population would go for the blond guy, it's the brunette guy I find cuter.....though I think that it is because of his timing and his reaction that he'd actually consider it.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017


It's the moment of truth.

Ok......that happened Sunday. But you know, I needed to make sure Russia didn't hack into the system and change vote tallies. And that there was appropriate investigation and hearings into such matters.

I also have post-traumatic stress disorder from having to endure watching Jimmy Fallon for anything longer 1.882 seconds.  Not at a time.  I'm talking cumulative.

Though it has taken me a while to catch on, I'm realizing that Mike is "letting" me choose first, and then he makes his selections. How very convenient. One of us (cough cough me cough) does the heavy lifting, and then someone else comes up from the rear and makes mostly the same selections, save a few so, he can win, even if it's only by one.

It's somewhat brilliant when you think of it.

And it's somewhat sad.

That kid he sat next to in math class who was always crouching over his paper?  So Mike couldn't cheat off of it. Is it any wonder I had to go over the ballot again and again?

So here is what it came down to:

Best Picture, Drama  - we both lost
Best Picture, Comedy or Musical - we both
Best Actor, Drama - we both won
Best Actress, Drama  - we both
Best Director - Mike won
Best Actor, Musical or Comedy - Mike won
Best Actress, Musical or Comedy - we both
Best Screenplay - we both lost
Best Supporting Actor - we both lost
Best Supporting Actress - we both won
Best Original Score - we both won
Best Original Song - Mike won (he was very nice about winning this category...........NOT!)
Best Animated Feature Film - Mike won. 
Best Foreign Language Film - Blobby finally got one!

Of course, the cookie prize thing was overshadowed by the one and only Meryl Fucking Streep (you must scream it like Billy Eichner).

Mike and I chatted during the presentation - we are both quick wits if I say so myself. So it was a fun back and forth most of the night, still at 21:23 I knew I was mathematically eliminated, so I knew I could go to bed at a reasonable hour.  ......then there was the introduction of Meryl.

I IM'd...."Streep always gives a good speech".    .....and how right I was.

Usually she is quippy and sardonic, which is why she'd be my selection of the one person with whom I'd like to have dinner. Last night she was really neither. But she was spot on.

And she also ruined my run of trying not to mention Dump.  Save a very brief pseudo-reference to him on January 1, you have to go back to December 23rd since I've truly brought him up - - kind of like a hairball.

The beauty of her speech - she never uttered his name.

That and she brought note several note cards up on stage, looked at the top one for about 2.6 seconds and never referenced them again. And no one, I mean no one, plays off Meryl Fucking Streep.

....and then it was over.  And Mike (as always), got the first word.

I've read little of the 'aftermath'. It seems it was all too predictable. He seems so predictable.

Then there's the whole, 'Hollywood has no place weighing in on politics'. or 'what do actors know about politics'.


What does a reality tv star know about politics?   It's rhetorical folks.

I get that Ryan Gosling, as handsome as he be, might not have a say, since he's Canadian and all, but why is an actor different than a steelworker when it comes to having opinions?  They both use many of the same services, such as utilities, roadways, etc. They both pay taxes, unlike you know who.

Yes, actors have more of a platform from which to speak. But so did Dump - and his supporters didn't seem to mind that. Hell, they even elected him.

But while Mike and Meryl think they're the winners of this Golden Globe thing - neither were even close. The big winner was................wait for it................

Goldie Hawn.

That fucking drunken / drugged out mess. She couldn't read. She could barely stand. And she couldn't even see the microphone stand. Amy Schumer showed that she is a real actress, as she didn't let on how mortified she was.  ....and she didn't laugh.

Yet, with Meryl Streep's speech, everyone forgot about that entire incident. Hell, they forgot who won best picture.

Still.....with the distractions and all, when it comes down to it, I need to get a set of cookies to Boston. I'll try to time it with Mike's birthday and make it a two-fer.

Because that's the kind of great guy I am.

Song by: Pet Shop Boys