Friday….finally!

Television is the first truly democratic culture – the first culture available to everybody and entirely governed by what the people want. The most terrifying thing is what people do want.
Clive Barnes

It’s amazing what people want to see on television: other people eating bugs or worse; families screaming at each other; contrived situations where people are thrown together just to see how they’ll interact.  It’s a shame really.  I remember when television used to be filled withtelevision sickly saccharin sitcoms (nice alliteration!) that wrapped everything up in a neat little package at the end of 22 minutes plus commercials.  I used to hate that too, but I think I prefer it over the onslaught of “reality” programs that have very little to do with reality.  I think a reality show might be good once, maybe even twice if it’s inventive, but a continuous parade of the weird element in search of fleeting fame and prize money that they will immediately blow on gadgets they’ll never use is starting to grate on me.  I long for a decent sitcom or drama that doesn’t insult my intelligence.  If I didn’t like baseball and films so much, I think I’d get rid of my television.

Would you believe I didn’t meant to discuss television today?   No, actually I just came to answer a few questions provided to me by my friend Maul St. Matthews of the Derby City Roller Girls:

If you care to participate, leave me a comment saying “Interview me.” I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions. You will update your blog with a post containing your answers to the questions.

You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

  1. Would you rather be an insanely wealthy, yet untalented, rock star, or a technically perfect, golden-voiced, but unknown jazz singer? Wow, this is tough.  And, even though I’ve started hating jazz on principle, I think I’m gonna go with the jazz singer option.  Why?  Well…I dislike untalented, but I like the wealthy part.  However, with the wealth usually comes all sorts of trouble (see: Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Britney Spears) and I’d just as soon avoid that part of it.  I think I’d like jazz singer and hopefully, years from now, my grandchildren would enjoy a resurgence of my music and recoup some of the royalties I should’ve received when my voice is used in the background of car commercials.
  1. What is truly the most beautiful thing you have ever seen?  Okay, I may have mentioned this before, but it may also have been in an email, but it bears repeating.  Especially in light of my fast approaching 4th wedding anniversary.  So here goes…for my 30th birthday, my wife, C, took me to Cooperstown to see the Baseball Hall of Fame.  It was a total surprise and it was an amazing trip.  But the beauty part comes in as we were coming back to Albany.  We stopped at a little place called Fly Creek Cider Mill to shop and look around.  As we were leaving the mill, it started to snow and I was using a friend’s video camera to watch my wife dancing across the bridge catching snowflakes on her tongue and laughing.  To date, that is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.  It may have been the happiest moment of my life, surpassing even my wedding day.
  1. If you were to host your own late night talk show, who would be your co-host? Without a doubt, Lewis Black.  He might just be the funniest person on the planet at the moment.  I love his indignation and his general political incorrectness.  He’s fun to watch and I think he’d make a great co-host.  Actually, truth be known, I’d probably be a better co-host for him…but we’re talking about me here.
  1. Would you rather be a skilled dancer, or a skilled fighter? Well, as I’ve always been afraid of my inner rage and how it might affect other people, I’m gonna go with dancer.  Plus, I think I’d specialize with either ballet or tap.  There’s an allure either way with both Baryshnikov and Glover.  I never saw Fight Club and I don’t care for Tyson or Holyfield.  Actually, I did take dance lessons way back in the early 80s, but obviously it wasn’t my thing because I don’t dance now.  But I remember a couple of the ballet positions and I can shuffle-ball-change with the best of them.  Or something like that.
  1. Will you scratch my back? I have itchy scapulae. I actually knew what scapulae were, so I wasn’t weirded out by this question.  Thank goodness for my year and a half at the medical school that assists me in my professional medical opinion…so, yes, I will scratch your back.  But as with all quid pro quo, you’ll have to scratch mine.

BONUS:  Why do you think your spouse loves you so? OOooh!  Bonus question…it’s like extra credit.  I think my spouse loves me because I’m the best husband I can be.  It’s one of the things that I really try to be good at, that I practice hard at doing.  She loves me because we can have discussions instead of arguments, I’m generally helpful around the house, and I try to make her feel like the best wife in the world, even if she thinks she’s not.  I complement her and she complements me, we’re two parts of the whole.  She’s my everything and I try to tell her that often, and I think that’s one of the many reasons she loves me.

See you in the funny papers!

I’m here for an argument…No, You’re NOT!

I’m always up for a good argument provided that the following criteria are used:

  1. I’m in it. I hate hearing other people argue. It makes me cringe and I dislike it.
  2. It’s a reasoned and logical argument that is slightly heated, but always knows to turn down the heat when it approaches boiling.
  3. Both sides can agree to disagree at any moment and the argument dissipates.

Now, with that said, I enjoy reading the letters to the editor in the local paper. I like to argue with the people in the paper because they tend to take my opposing viewpoint. They’re not always logical, but it’s always heated and I can agree to disagree at any moment and move on to the comics. However, in every case, the writer is always passionate about their particular view and proudly defends it to no one and everyone at the same time.

My favorites, of late, have been the vitriolic tirades both for and against the removal of I-64 from above Waterfront Park. It has been an interesting debate, if for no other reason than it has pretty much already been decided. The plan as I understand it now is to expand the lanes of I-64, build two bridges (one downtown, one east end) and flood as much traffic through the middle of the city as possible. The “alternative” as posed by those of the 8664 campaign is to remove the downtown section of I-64, build one bridge (east end), route all the traffic through Indiana, and bask in the sun on the Great Lawn, accessible via the new Waterfront Parkway.

I, personally, now propose a third idea which will be met with wild accusation as to its impossibilities and I fully accept the ensuing arguments, mostly because they will adhere to the rules set up in the aforementioned guidelines for an argument. My idea is to add a bridge on the east end of town because we could use one there, eliminate I-64 from 9th Street to I-65…and here’s the wild and crazy part…make the central business district (the area bounded by the river to the north, 9th Street to the west, Jackson Street to the east, and Broadway to the south) CAR-FREE, and finally, add light rail from several access points around the city to the CBD.

Now, those of you who don’t live here, probably don’t really care. But commuters and those of us who drive downtown occasionally could probably see the benefits of this arrangement. I think it’s worth looking at, but as I say, the dilemma seems to have already been decided by those currently in power. Let the argument begin.

In other news…

  • I’m thrilled with my new grill. The switch from charcoal to gas was easier than I thought. It provided some wonderful dinner before the Police concert.
  • Yes, the Police concert, which was awesome, but you should never walk from my house to Churchill Downs and back in flip-flops.
  • You’ll notice a new updated books section to the right. It is part of a new website proffered by my good friend, the Monsignor, at Le Petomane. As such, the books page will probably disappear as goodreads does all of that for me.
  • I’m going to be running in the Louisville Half-Marathon in October…so I’d better start training.

See you in the funny papers!

Must Needz Kaffeen

No, I have not lost my mind and yes, I know the title of the post is misspelled.  It’s an homage to the LOLCats from icanhascheezburger.com and their incredible ability to make me laugh.  Not to mention the fact that due to my viewing of the latest installment of Harry Potter (movie review available on movies page) last night, I didn’t get home til 3:30 and I really need caffeine.  My eyes are slowly melting behind my glasses.

In other news, the American League defeated the National League All-Stars last night for the home-field advantage rights during the World Series.  That means that when my Boston Red Sox are playing in the World Series, they’ll have the home-field advantage.  Funny thing about the All-Star game…each player wears the uniform of the side in which they play for…for example:

AL JerseyNL Jersey

 

Now, the interesting thing is most normal people who follow baseball and understand what’s going on will understand that this is the case and has been for many years.  I mean, how confusing would it be if every player wore his own uniform and when throwing the ball you had to remember whether or not that guy was in your league or not before you threw it to him.  So, they do it for the sake of uniformity…hence, the name, UNIFORM.  However, some people who are not in the know but claim to be baseball fans, upon seeing a player, let’s say A-Rod, in the orange American League jersey (because the Yankees are in the American League) might be tempted to become distraught and discouraged into believing that their favorite player, hypothetically, has been traded or has signed with a new team.  They might even exclaim to others around them in their confusion that they can’t believe that their favorite player (or possibly the only one they know) has been traded or is otherwise seen out of their basic pinstripes (or other colors, y’know, hypothetically).  This, of course, is grounds for guffaws of laughter and extreme humiliation to the point of making phone calls during the All-Star game and leading to, but not exclusively, being called out in a friend’s blog.  I mean, y’know…hypothetically.
So with that, I’ll just be napping under my desk until lunch time at which point I’ll come out to take a nap and then I’ll go back to taking my nap after lunch so that when I get home, I’ll be ready for my nap.  Really, really need caffeine.

See you in the funny papers!

When is it enough?

This post has been brewing for a couple of days and I’ve just now settled in to write it.  I can only hope it makes as much sense in print as it does in my head.

When will the suffering of the world be enough for us to take notice?  Some of us have, but I would wager my next paycheck that the majority of us have not.  There is political upheaval in Burma, genocide in Darfur, extreme poverty in Bangladesh, HIV/AIDS in Africa, global warming that threatens the very existence of life across this planet, and more than 3500 of our own men and women have died in an ill-conceived war.  And yet, we’re concerned about who Anna Nicole Smith’s father is, Earthwhether Barry Bonds took steroids, the need for a $500 iPhone, and if the Spice Girls are going to make a comeback.  When does the conflict, the unrest, the murder of innocents…when is it enough for us to pay attention?

I’m not even pointing fingers on this one, because I’m just as guilty as most of you who will read this.  I have tried to make a dent in the global warming, but I concern myself more with whether the Red Sox win than if women are raped and children are killed on a daily basis.  I feel swamped by the inability to affect change in any part of the globe.  And every time I see a movie regarding an area of the world that could use help, the same theme rears its ugly head: “Americans may or may not see this, but if they do, they’ll simply shake their heads and go back to their meals before the late show.”  People, it is time!  It is time we stopped simply shaking our heads and started giving of our hearts.  It’s time we elected officials who are in a position to make changes that will help others.  And if we can’t elect people who can or are willing to do this, then we need to change the system so that something can be done.  Two hundred thirty years ago, a few brave souls decided they were going to change the system and they did so by dumping some tea into the ocean.  One hundred forty-five years ago, a lot of brave souls decided that the system really wasn’t working right and they fought with each other, brother against brother, to get it straightened out.  Forty years ago, they had to tweak the system again because apparently some people didn’t get the message the first time.  Now is the time that we fix what’s not working.  Now is the time when we have to come together, ALL OF US, on equal footing, regardless of how we believe, who we have sex with, or what country our great-great-grandfathers came from originally and we have to understand that the earth is a shared resource and everyone can benefit from the goodness of the earth AS WELL AS having the earth benefit from our ability to understand how things work.  We have to become one people in search of the betterment of each other in order to continue to exist on this planet.

I think that it’s been enough.  Let’s see to it that someday we don’t have to worry about these sorts of things anymore.