Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Evidence Welfare Doesn't Work

Watch as a professional loser receives an insanely gorgeous home only to lose it because they got - wait for it - a loan they could not afford. This after the home was given to them - mortgage paid - with another $100k to pay for maintenance.

But hey, she doesn't care! "What’s going to happen is instead of keep paying my mortgage, I’m going to take my money and not pay my mortgage because I’m being harassed."

My God - you grasping, useless piece of human refuse.
http://www.wsbtv.com/news/16980412/detail.html

Friday, July 25, 2008

"Only Ever Really One Story...

...a boy and a girl...and a dream of the world."

There are many levels of seduction in the world, and many different prices paid.

"We are all animals, my lady..."



Just a little...reminiscing.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

JoshWhedonJoshWhedonJoshWhedon and Nathan, tooooo!!!

So I was just cruising the blogworld and saw a link and said to myself, "Self, WTF? Seriously?" And then I clicked it.

Go ahead.

Click it.

Whedon Is A Genius

I'm all giggly and aroused now.

I'll be in my bunk.

Associations

Well, as you may know, Steve of Hog On Ice has a new site, Manly Grub, and a forum where one can read and contribute to the eventual downfall of diets everywhere. While it will likely take me a day or two to get it added to the roll here, do mosey on over and take a peek.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Rock Honors

I'll be damned if I didn't stumble onto some history...VH1 Honors is giving due credit to The Who. I happened across it as Pearl Jam performed - quite well - "The Real Me". It has an absolutely insane bass line paired with an absolute thunder of drums. One knows there is a lead guitar path in there somewhere but for me those low notes carry over all.

How I used to adore them...I had a phase you might say - post-Robin Trower, pre-AC/DC. And Quadrophenia spoke to me intensely. As one man noted in the intro, the arenas would quake. I'd forgotten that sensation, actually. I never got to see The Who live but others, yes - others where the fans and the music were so intertwined that the very hall moved in response.

So when Adam Sandler finished his intro (and yes, I do miss Keith Moon very much indeed - he'd be showing the young men how its really done) and those green lasers started their dancing...and the notes for "Baba O'Riley" rang out...I got chills up and down. Of course, I also thought about Billy and how he'd know exactly what lights those were and how they were aimed and timed. And how he'd understand that for me those drums will always be the hallmark...I like some guitar, yes. But...oh, that rumble...I do love it.

At any rate, as the guy from Coldplay said - when you hear that music it makes you feel like you should just give up.

Yes. Because no one did it as well.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

I Hate You, Secret Shopper

I don't write about my work very often - mostly because what I do is relatively simple and routine. But today...today I had the call that we staffers dread - the nosey, sneaky secret shopper whore.

I did everything I could to shake her - testing, so to speak, to see if it was a spam call or not. But she knew the names and details so I had to assume it was someone safe. Not so much. But says she after she IDs herself - I am getting a 100% because I asked the right questions.

I got a corporate reach around, folks.

All I could think was, "Bitch, what is your name because 1) I never want to work for you and, 2) if I ever do lose it you are the first one against the wall."

Sigh....I have GOT to figure out how to move out of this working group and be free of that corporate BS. Meanwhile, I have cursed her with intense anal itching. Long-term. Fair-fair.

All The Living and The Dead

Ah...I forget about this movie for long stretches and then remember it and feel that deep tug on my heart once again. John Huston was deathly ill during its production and one can imagine the emotions on the set as his daughter put that...experience into her role.

It is a lovely film and possibly the only sense made of James Joyce's work. Every scene a jewel...I put these here in their order and hope I do not ruin anyones enjoyment of a future viewing. It really should be watched in deep wintertime but...we shall enjoy it now while the sun can remove some of that chill.

Broken Vows – The Recitation “…and my fear is great that you have taken God from me…”


Poor Michael Furey


All The Living and The Dead

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Guilty Pleasures

So...I was just working out at lunch while doing the home office thing (yeah, I'm spoiled utterly rotten, it's true) and watching my latest guilty pleasure, Denise Richards: It's Complicated. I hate to admit it because I truly abhor reality TV and all such dramatized crap but...I sincerely like the girl. I like her cursing, her depth of grief for her mom, the way she loves her kids...but I also wonder how on earth someone with that kind of money can NOT have a pet walker or a personal assistant who would ensure nothing would interfere with her life.


Seriously - take the Trooper to Hawaii and there are not going to be any photos taken of you without your permission. WHERE is her security? And if there is none, WHY? Anyway, I come back to the desk and make the rounds when I come across this.


Now, Ladies - let us bear in mind that Dame Helen Mirren is in her mid-60's. And THIS is her proud moment. Allow us all to take a moment to believe that - if we work very hard and live very carefully - we might just look like this.


Of course, it might be easier to bathe in the blood of virgins.


Seriously. She is STUNNINGLY well-kept. There is possibly no hope at all for the rest of us.


I need some chocolate - STAT!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Future War

Well, now - looks like Stanford's been having one hell of a fun time. I LOVE this. The geek level is high, the commentary dry, but wait for it...wait for it...beach balls bounce, routes determined, avoidance performed and - at the end - a search pattern on steroids. Hot DAMN but I love this.



Point Niner is about to become a favorite, I think...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dog Day Afternoon


This is the life, I guess. Ranger'd been sort of dragging ass around the house, pouting I think for his pal. So after a few hours of waking up the husband (night shift after a chase) we headed to Austin to see the latest park option.
It's miserably hot for Ranger so we've been looking for good water options and found it at Red Bud. We'd heard people speak of it, seen it mentioned all over the net. But we finally just went there. And glad we were, too! Superb access points all through the park allowed us to find peaceful locations for Ranger to practice his swimming. He LOVES the water.
Of course, his first time at Bull Creek wasn't as pleasant for him - he didn't know what it was, really, to swim. But now he paddles like a labrador, pleased to splash and play. The park was quite busy, though, since it was post-church and post-hangover time. A lot of kayaking going on, too. I think we'll have to get Ranger a lifevest to wear so that he can get all tired out and then just have fun paddling without worrying about his getting overtired.
He's passed out on his bed, now. I think that - after I get the french bread in the oven and the puttanesca prep'd - it will be time for a bath to remove that riverine scent. Lord knows he has a pound of sediment on him, too. At any rate, what a terrific find. Not great parking options, mind you, but a lovely place to let a dog cool off.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Dark Continent

Once again Billy finds the most wonderful column...Kevin Myers has a thing or two to say about Africa and our futile attempts to save it.

Whilst Billy uses the following quote to illustrate the matter...
"The wide-eyed boy-child we saved, 20 years or so ago, is now a priapic,
Kalashnikov-bearing hearty, siring children whenever the whim takes him."


...I had a different quote in mind.
"How much morality is there in saving an Ethiopian child from starvation today,
for it to survive to a life of brutal circumcision, poverty, hunger, violence
and sexual abuse, resulting in another half-dozen such wide-eyed children, with
comparably jolly little lives ahead of them? Of course, it might make you feel
better, which is a prime reason for so much charity. But that is not good
enough."


The root of philanthropy...I am not certain that such kindness is always a good idea. Look at what welfare has done to an entire generation of Americans. I cannot help but compare post-war Japan and its absolutely devastated population and its recovery to that of Africa and its constant begging for more-more-more.

It will never be enough.

That single concept seems to not quite get through to most "givers". They don't intend to stop taking - not ever. They're smarter than that. The only thing that brings a society up from its knees is work. Has India the same caste system of old? Or is it fading as the work and the income it brings edits hearts and minds?

My own employer is looking to Africa as the new India - a place to get cheap labor for a time. But the entry fees are staggering. Have you any idea of the grift in place there? I can hardly imagine it, myself. Every move, every purchase comes with an unwritten tax. Still, I have to hope that earned income will edit their hearts and minds, too.

But I doubt it. I sincerely do. Because all it will take is a machete and a man with a bit more ambition showing up at an investor's residence. It'll be an interesting time, I think. And I suspect a profitable time for folks like these. At least someone is profiting from investments there. The rest of us are merely spinning our wheels.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Da


There are many movies about fathers, good dads and SOBs...tear jerkers and comedies. When I saw the post over at The Slack (God, you know you've "made it" when your blog name can be referred to so...) I knew. It's time to speak of the old man.

Look at him - the entertainer even before he wore long pants. Sigh...Where to begin? I always seem to start in the middle - when he wasn't there - when I think about him. He was adopted by Oma and Opa so we've no real clue about his family. My sister thinks that perhaps there was a disgraced relation who gave him up to be raised quietly. German, you see, and very pragmatic about those things.

I know he was a Navy man when he and mom wed. It was a small affair. And daughters were born one after another. Including me. And then one final last ditch attempt and BANG. His son. His only son after 4 girls. He went by "Prince". Which means, of course, that we had to torment him whenever possible. Just to keep things even.

At any rate being a young man and father didn't suit him, I think. All his life he'd been before the crowd in one way or another. Gymnastics at one point - he can still lift hover in a chair by hand and arm strength alone as though yet on the rings high in the air. And the accordion always. Suffice to say he was drawn to the stage all his life. I remember best his piano playing. Always tinkling in the back of my mind. And his feet - always dancing, moving.

It is from him I received the gift of words, the love of music and art. From him the intelligence, too. What little I have I credit to him. But I also lay at his feet some blame for not being there when it could have done me some good. We try to move past it, don't we? To take on our own shoulders the blame for the wrong in our lives. But there is still that petulant child inside - "If only..." it whines. And mine sometimes cries loudly.

But I recall clearly that when I truly needed him he was there. The two instances, actually, both related, always stand out for me when I think of my father. He was in no position to take on a teenager when I reached out to him from a palatial life in Alexandria. But he agreed anyway. Perhaps feeling that in this he could pay for some of his lacking in the past. I ran there, always looking back for the brother I had to leave behind, hoping he wouldn't be long or far behind.

Once there, I had to make my way into yet another school. But this one...this one had you move through a massive crowd of people, table to table, where the teachers sat and took your name as you signed up for their class. Perhaps it was the stress of the move and the pain and loss therein. Perhaps it was something else. But I had what I can only call a complete loss of self. I walked into that cacaphony and went stock still. My hand sought his desperately. As though I were a toddler rather than the near-woman I was.

I can remember even in this moment the relief that I felt when his warm flesh took mine, when he looked to me - thoroughly confused as to why I would be reacting so - and slowly wended our way through the crowd, table to table, as I hid my face in his sleeve - buried in the crook of his arm so that no one need see the tears and the fear. A gentleman, he was, making smooth the fractured seas I was sailing inside my mind.

I have never forgotten that mercy. Never.

He wasn't there. Far too often he simply wasn't there. But in that space - that bare 20 minutes - he was a father.

So I can laugh now when he calls me, speaking of the implant he hopes will...raise his...hopes for the ladies. We can cackle together over the worst pun. And I can completely accept his penchant for modulating his voice as he speaks, moving into the most proper British accent or the lilt of an Irishman to press a point home. We can speak of music that moves us, and I can smile as he dances a jig, or a wee bit of soft shoe. No, he wasn't meant to be relied upon like a rock. Rather, he was meant to be a scrim - something to bounce your light off of, something to back your play. To decorate your life and then move on.

And it's okay. It's okay, now.

These are for him - all of them because of what he gave me.










A Generous Plenty

What a hectic week! The dogs have been playing almost non-stop, Trooper cleaned the garage all day yesterday, and I've been staying busy with work. But there were some interesting moments...

For one, guess what part finally came in?
Yep! I got my upper. WOOT! Now, we just have to decide on a few more bits and pieces and I will have a brand new baby. ALL MINE. The purchases of late have been for him so it was nice to see a loud pointy thing of my own for a change. I cannot wait to get to the range. Maybe an anniversary trip...that could be fun!!

Also, I found again a long lost blogger. I really get irked when you guys go undercover. I understand the need but I sure do miss y'all. At any rate, I'll be adding Leeann to the roll soon. How I adore her sense of humor!

And now the video megathon...
From AD - I always suspected it...


Leeann offered this - a PowerPoint from Hell, I guess. Weirdly, it made sense.


Can you even imagine? How brave to stand as it ran - to trust that it still remembered...and how sweet the moment...if I've already posted this, forgive the repeat. I do adore it...

Monday, July 07, 2008

Death and Destruction

AKA Jasper & Ranger. It was the latter's birthday on the 4th (well, close enough, anyway) so we had a little party with some cake for the dogs. AND a pinata full of snackage - a perfect gift from his other pal, Pailey! The next day his best pal came to spend the week with us as his family went on vacation. Suffice to say it has been interesting.

They adore each other and do nothing but play all day long unless you make them lay down - or they pass out. They literally exhaust themselves. Which is, of course, wonderful. Jasper is a fine boy and very good. He is mostly an outside dog at home so we're teaching him the inside manners.
He is not as fond of cats but has been schooled. Ah, yes - I believe it was Jonesy that tagged his snout. After that he was well behaved. He does not like how they can creep around the house without him noticing. They'll move behind him, he gets surprised and barks in irritation. "Flanked! By a cat!", he thinks.

I wish the digital camera had sound but for now I can offer this snippet. Yes, Ranger consistently whips his ass. But only because Jasper lets him. He could easily toss him to the ground, I think. But Ranger is rank in the rodeo parlance. Here -take a peek. Hope the rez is decent...


video

Trust me - there was a lot of grunting, barking and whining going on but if you look close, the teeth aren't clenching. Mock battles...with kisses after. A lot like the humans, I guess.


Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Rachel Is A Lucky Girl

Yeah, not only does she have a Rupert and fine puppies (and her dogs are cute too! Tah dum DUM!) but the woman has photos of Minear's wee puppes. (His dogs - I don't think he has the other kind.)

AND a signed script to Out Of Gas.

Let me tell you - I am envious beyond belief. I am waiting for this weekend to indulge in a Firefly fest (suitable for the holiday) so I'm just devastated by her fortune. Well, luck follows the good people, no?

Saint Rachel.

What would be her attributes?

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

*Snicker* Oh, Yeah

Yes, Joan, I did. And whats more - I'm gonna do it again.

If you've never seen Firefly (yeah, Serenity rocked but not a quarter as much if you haven't done the entire series first) you simply owe it to humanity to do so. Full stop.

First up: Big Damn Heroes
"Yeah, but she's our witch..."



And of course, just a little Baldwin pron...


And a snippet to explain..."I'll be in my bunk" from War Stories...

What's Not To Like?

Someone else had a wee note up about the very...distracting show, Burn Notice. Yes, indeed. I have fallen victim, also. And not just for the damnably handsome Michael but also for Fionna and her mad, ice pick ways. If you haven't seen it, well, the full episodes are here so damned well get on it, already!

(And you know, bless them for putting Sharon Gless on there...I am certain she and I wouldn't agree politically but she's chewing up the role and spitting it out in a form that makes it unbelievably palatable. Good on ya...)
"I'll be in my bunk..."