Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Greetings

Wishing all my readers a Merry Christmas and many sandwiches.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Put To Sleep

FX Cancels Terriers

My curse strikes again--it seems like every time I really like a show, it gets canceled, with very few exceptions. This was one of the truly unique shows on TV--half comedy, half hard-boiled P.I. noir drama. It got off to a slow start, but in hindsight, that was extremely deliberate; many seemingly innocuous events in the early episodes turn out to be crucial as the season reaches its end, and those who stuck with it are rewarded with a GREAT finale episode.

I still recommend it when it gets released on DVD/NetFlix/RokU/Boxee/whatever. Unlike a lot of shows, the season was totally self-contained and doesn't leave a lot of "wait 'till next season" loose ends hanging around. I'm always disappointed to see something that's different from the standard homogenized crap go down like this, but it was a fun watch while it lasted.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Truck You

Yesterday I wrote about flying during the Thanksgiving holiday. Today I have another pet peeve that relates to driving. Look what I get to deal with after work tonight, on the "busiest travel day of the year":

Truck crash closes I-95

I realize that the accident hasn't been thoroughly investigated yet, but really, who else is going to be at fault in a single-vehicle accident? And this is the second single-vehicle big rig accident in two weeks in my area that's closed a stretch of major highway.

Let's compare the trucker for just a moment to a medical doctor--just two gentlemen (or ladies) of a similar ilk. If a doctor makes a mistake as egregious as some of the moving violations the truckers who cause these accidents get cited for, he loses his license for a long time--sometimes forever. Now consider this: a doctor has considerably more complex safety considerations to remember than a trucker does, and a doctor's mistake endangers only one person at a time. A trucker's error endangers everyone around them and can kill many people in one fell swoop. Why aren't truck drivers held to the same safety standards as other professionals, so that we can get the bad ones off the roads? I wonder if it has anything to do with the millions of dollars that the Teamsters Union "donates" to politicians every year.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Standing Pat

Tomorrow's the unofficial "getaway day" for Thanksgiving weekend, and I'm glad as hell that I don't have to fly anywhere. If I did, I'd probably get arrested for kicking the living crap out of one of the snarky little douchebags taking part in the "don't look at my pathetic little genitals" protest that's supposedly going to happen tomorrow. What's the matter, you crybabies--that the TSA is keeping you too safe? Look, there are two ways to ensure that air travel is safe from demented individuals who think nothing of horrifically killing themselves and others to make a political point. One is to keep dangerous people off the planes, and the other is to keep dangerous items off the planes. We've tried to do the former, but that gets the "You-Can't-Say-That-Even-If-It's-True" Gestapo mobilized, so this is what you're left with. I don't care if the monitors are being watched and the pat-down searches are being conducted by Ricky Martin himself (and let's face it, your screener is far more likely to resemble Bruce Vilanch). I'd rather have my junk fondled a million times over than be on the plane where someone managed to slip a weapon through.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Don't Tase Me Bro

Delaware police: Death renews outcry against use of Taser

Attention all felons, miscreants, and members of oppressed minority groups: here's a foolproof method to not get killed by a taser:


Simple. Police do a dangerous job, where they're never sure who's going to be the lunatic who pulls a gun, knife, broken bottle, sharpened toothbrush, or whatever, and try to seriously maim or kill them. Their choices are to risk death and dismemberment themselves, put a bullet into the suspect, or drop them with a taser. The taser is a compromise between options 1 and 2. The way to let them know that you're not going to be that maniac who's going to put them in danger? Obey the police. Think you're being singled out for no good reason? Obey the police anyway. The time to redress violations of your civil liberties is with your lawyer, after whatever situation you're part of has passed. You have the benefit of over 200 years of refinement of police procedures and your rights that have put numerous remedies in place for dealing with police misconduct, whether negligent or malicious. Don't fight the cops. Don't get tased. Don't be the guy with an undiagnosed heart condition who gets killed by the taser. It really is that simple.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Why Bother?

From Taco Bell's own website comes the description of their new XXL Chalupa:

An XXL-sized crispy Chalupa shell packed with seasoned ground beef, crispy lettuce, fiesta salsa, a blend of three cheeses–cheddar, pepper jack and mozzarella–and nacho cheese sauce, red strips and topped with reduced-fat sour cream.
The emphasis, of course, is all mine. This bad boy tops out at 650 calories and 39 grams of fat...but just imagine what it could have been if they hadn't used reduced-fat sour cream!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Now We Know Why He Wears #4

I really hope our lawmakers are watching the NFL and Commissioner Goodell very closely right now, because there's a lesson to be learned here on how a good law or policy can go bad if it's pushed too far. Or in this case, too Favre.

The NFL's personal conduct policy was born out of the best intentions. At the time it was conceived, the league and its players had a real image problem. Tank Johnson, Pacman Jones, the Vikings' party boat, the fact that most of the Cincinnati Bengals' starting lineup was standing in police lineups on a regular basis--all of this was giving the image that the NFL's players were out-of-control madmen, and really, some of them were. So Goodell and Co. came up with the idea that if you got in trouble off the field, you'd be suspended from the league for a certain amount of time.

And at first, it worked just as intended. Players who committed crimes and were arrested, charged, and convicted were forced to sit out, hurting their team and costing them real money. And some of these guys were convicted of real crimes--weapons charges, animal cruelty, even manslaughter.

But then there was Roethlisberger. Big Ben was accused of sex crimes not once, but twice. Of course that's a serious accusation, and should be taken seriously. But in both cases, the police investigated and found there was nothing to charge Roethlisberger with, since poor judgment/taste in women isn't against the law. But the league decided that wasn't good enough, and so they slapped a suspension on Ben for a crime with which he was never charged, let alone convicted.

And so here we are, and now here's Brett Favre, sending voice mails and pictures of his junk to a Jets "game hostess" (whatever that is) turned Playboy/Maxim model turned token look-at-my-boobs woman host on the Versus network. IF these embarrassing messages and pictures (the voice mails sound like an eighth-grader asking his hot chemistry lab partner to the harvest dance, and the pictures--well, let's just say there's not a whole lotta junk in the junk) came from Favre, then he's clearly in the wrong, as a married man. But why on earth is the NFL commissioner's office investigating this? This happened two years ago, so if this bimbo didn't complain about it when it happened, that's a pretty clear sign that she didn't consider it to be harassment, and that should be as far as it goes. The NFL isn't the Sex Police, the Marriage Police, or anything in between. And yet somehow here we are, at the bottom of the slippery slope, with Goodell acting like he has a papal appointment as Grand High Inquisitor. This is something that should be between a man and his wife, not man and boss or man and public. That's something we'd all do well to remember.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Delaware Gets Teabagged

Great job, Delaware Republicans. Way to throw away a sure U.S. Senate seat pickup in favor of a lost cause. Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face. Look, I don't agree with Castle's voting record 100% either (most notably his support for cap-and-trade, but that's a topic for another time). We could have sent a moderate Republican who can work with the Democrats in Congress and the White House, engaging in discussion rather than screeching and feces-flinging that's better suited to howler monkeys than elected officials. Instead, we've got a choice between Christine O'Donnell, a paranoid maniac who can't manage her own finances and believes that pregnant rape victims should be forced by law to carry the consequences of their attack to term, and Chris Coons, a man who's never been elected to office above the county level (the highest office he's held is county executive--the equivalent of being mayor of a city with a population of around half a million) and managed to convert a budget surplus when he took office into a whopping deficit in just four years, only managing to pull out of it with three property tax hikes over that same period.

There are no high cards in this hand, folks....just a bunch of jokers. That's why I'll be pulling the lever for Libertarian Jim Rash in November. It's a wasted vote, but it's the only call I can make in this election that'll allow me to sleep at night.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mosque Pit

Remember that episode of The Simpsons where they go to the carnival, and Homer has them deep-fry his shirt? Remember this exchange between Homer and Marge?

Homer: And you said they couldn't deep-fry my shirt!
Marge: I didn't say they couldn't, I said you shouldn't.
That's pretty much how it is with the "Ground Zero Mosque". Yes, it's not technically on the site of the former World Trade Center, but it was close enough to be hit by one of the planes' landing gear. There's no denying that the group trying to build this mosque has the right to do so--the First Amendment guarantees that. But isn't it funny that most of the people who are defending the decision to put this here are the ones crying for "sensitivity" in other situations? How about, just this once, showing some sensitivity to the victims and their families, and just stepping this mosque back a few blocks? And while I'm not in any way condoning vandalism, if it happens in this case, those who chose the location will have to shoulder their share of the responsibility. Or at least as much of the responsibility as America deserves for the 9/11 attacks.

Friday, July 30, 2010

His Toughest Case Yet

Matlock has taken on a new client--one that he might not be able to get off the hook with a dramatic cross-examination and a piece of last-minute surprise evidence. Andy Griffith is teaming up with Medicare to extol the virtues of ObamaCare to senior citizens (who tend to vote in the highest numbers).

I have no idea if ol' Andy got paid, or if he volunteered out of the goodness of his heart, but that's immaterial. This is a (supposedly) party-neutral government agency, funded 100% by our tax dollars to subsidize health care and medicine for our senior citizens, spending that tax money on TV propaganda to extol the virtues of a partisan program put into place by the ruling party (for the moment.) This is the kind of crap we, Americans of all parties, used to cry foul over when it happened in other countries. Wake up, and keep this in mind when you're deciding who to vote for in November.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Weekend Without Common Sense

Let's have a "Weekend Without Oil"....because oil companies are evil, MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!

Go check out the site and all of its pomposity, specifically, its first two points. Better yet, I'll list them right here.

1. Walk or ride your bike: Avoid using cars and if you must, always try to carpool. Transportation accounts for 40 percent of our petroleum consumption and is easily one of the biggest areas we need to improve upon.
2. Enjoy the outdoors: Avoid buying new sporting equipment, since oil makes up nearly 25% of rubber. Footballs or basketballs, for example, can last for many years and used equipment is often just as good and will reduce demand for oil needed to make new rubber.
They didn't even bother to put some space between points number 1 and 2 on their list. Walk or ride your bike, but don't use any rubber! I don't know about you, but I just love walking barefoot on streets and sidewalks in mid-August.

These clowns do a great job of promoting the "drill-baby-drill" agenda, by showing just how much in our society depends on oil, and just how bad life is going to suck if we restrict the supply and tax the shit out of it, like certain people who can afford it seem to want to do.

I Know What They're Really Saying

Probably because one would need divine power in order to "perform" for these oinkers.

H/T to the San Francisco Weekly blogs and Nick Lucchesi on Twitter.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

If You're Reading This...

...then Homer Simpson has something to tell you.

No, seriously. They did a study and everything. Of course, that's only true of other, lesser blogs. Reading this one makes you 100% more masculine and heterosexual. Kind of like the Old Spice Guy. Although watching that commercial might make you gay too. I'm not sure. I'll let you know after I watch it a few more times.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

New Blogroll Link: The Oily Pelican

I've got a new site in my blogroll section, and it's one that I'm reading daily: The Oily Pelican. It's written by a friend of mine who, in her own words, "decided to trade in her cushy desk job for chest waders, snake boots, and 90-degree heat to go help with the environmental effort on the Louisiana coast." It's a firsthand account, not filtered through some PR department or condensed into a press release, and that's really important if you care at all about what's going on down there. (And if you don't, then you're a sorry excuse for a human being, and I pray for your death.)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Craig Kilborn Must Die

Or his new show must be canceled. I'm not a picky man.

No, I've never seen it. But here in the greater Philly area, the local Fox affiliate has removed their last syndicated Simpsons slot in favor of this dreck that appears to be, based on the commercials, the gawdawful TMZ-on-TV meets the admittedly-funny early Daily Show. The nightly Simpsons rerun is what I'd relied on to watch/listen to as I drift off to sleep every night. I'd seen them all a hundred times, so I never worried about missing anything, and hey, anything's better than being alone in the dark with only your own thoughts trying to go to sleep, right?

I guess it's on to House reruns as a replacement, at least for the time being. But I shudder to think about the effect on my brain absorbing that guy into my subconscious as I teeter on the edge of sleep. I just hope it doesn't turn me into a cynical, sarcastic jerk.

Friday, June 18, 2010


In the same vein as yesterday's post, here's yet another reason why I'm a lifelong Yankee fan. They know enough to nip this vuvuzela nonsense in the bud. What an idiot this guy is, too. "Duh, OK, I'll give up my twenty dollar seat so that I can hold onto a $2 piece of plastic that's been down the front of my pants. Not so much because I like blowing a horn as much as because the mouthpiece tastes like Funyuns." At least, I assume this is the typical mindset of an American vuvuzela-blower.

If you ask me, they didn't treat him harshly enough. Security would have been more than justified in giving him the Philly treatment. Or the Seattle treatment. Or just put it back into his pants...from a slightly different angle. (Yeah, I hate vuvuzelas.) On the other hand, that probably isn't the best solution. If anything, it might just make the noise louder.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


I've been watching a little bit of World Cup this year, despite the fact that the extent of my knowledge of the sport is what I can remember from playing on my elementary school club teams from the ages of 8 through 12. It really is interesting to hockey without the sticks, played on a field the size of a small U.S. state. And even though I found the vuvuzelas, I was against banning them, at least at first. After all, part of international competitions is experiencing the host country's local "flavor" and traditions, right? But then I read a little bit about them, and it turns out that there's nothing local or traditional about them, at least where it comes to soccer games. See, the idea was "borrowed" from Central and South American countries, and wasn't introduced in South Africa until sometime in the 1990s. So I've changed my mind--get rid of the freakin' things. Or at least filter them out of the broadcast audio.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Kicking Kissing Ass

One week, the political talking heads and polls are saying that Obama isn't showing enough emotion, and specifically anger, in dealing with the BP situation. Meanwhile, the headlines are all about the allegations that the White House offered PA Democrat Senate nominee Joe Sestak a cushy White House job in order to stay out of the primary against ex-Republican Arlen Specter.

Then, yesterday morning, we get this:

So is this the our courageous leader getting tough on those polluters, or a career politician putting a wet finger in the air to see which way the political winds are blowing? I know which way I'm leaning, but I'll leave it up to you, the reader, to decide. Personally, I don't want my president ranting like Carlo from The Godfather, screaming at BP to "clean it up!" I tend to agree with White House press secretary Robert Gibbs--the administration will be judged on how it performs rather than what it says during this crisis. I hope that ends up being more good than bad, but based on what I've seen so far, I'm not optimistic.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

A Sad Day For Baseball

No, I'm not talking about Jim Joyce, although I do think he should be given a prostate exam with a cactus. I'm talking about The Kid, Ken Griffey Jr., and his retirement. It truly is the end of an era, and not just for the Mariners and Reds. (Not just for the White Sox era, though for them, the Ken Griffey Jr. era lasted for about two months back in 2008, so I think they're over it by now.) No, this is the end of an era for the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant All-Star Team, for the last of Mr. Burns's All-Stars has hung up his spikes and called it a career.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Iran With The Plan

They must have one helluva think tank over there in Iran. They've come up with a way to prevent both earthquakes and melanoma....all at the same time! I don't know how we manage to avoid an all-out war with a government as reactionary and backwards-thinking as this. How are we even supposed to relate to this? We have iPads and astronauts; they blame seismic events on the giant man in the sky getting mad. And these are the people we're supposed to want to improve our relationships with?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Wii-bles Wobble And Sometimes Fall Down

The headline on the front page of reads: "Woman's Persistent Genital Arousal Blamed on Wii Fit". But open the article, and you'll get a completely different story. But you've got to hand it to them. Sex sells, and so do cool tech toys. Sexy tech? As Jim Breuer would say, "Jackpot!" See, this woman's problems weren't caused by some weird exercise or yoga pose that the Wii Fit told her to do. No, this clumsy bitch slipped and fell off the equipment and damaged a nerve. C'mon, Fox...this wouldn't even be a story if her condition were a result of falling off a treadmill. You can (justly) criticize other media outlets all you want, but running stories like this for the sake of ratings/clickthroughs/ad impressions just makes you look like a bunch of hypocrites.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Slow and Steady Wins The Race Gets You Yelled At

The 2010 baseball season is five days old, and already my beloved Yankees are the source of controversy. Seems the crew chief of their opening series against the hated Red Sox, Cowboy Joe West, wasn't happy with the pace of Tuesday night's game.

Well, excu-u-u-u-u-se us, fatbody. The game takes time because the teams take their time. This is only one of the most important series all year for both teams, teams who are going to be neck and neck at each other all year with not only a playoff spot but possible home field advantage for the ALCS and a trip to the World Series and, oh, yeah, by the way, about a gajillion zillion dollars on the line, God forbid they play the game deliberately, neither throwing the ball right down the chute or swinging at pitches in the dirt. If you don't like it, you can always go be an NFL referee...oh, that's right, I forgot, they don't pay as much as MLB does, so your fat lazy ass would have to get a job for the eight months of the year they're not in season, and no, I'm not counting the playoffs in that, because with your attitude and your Grand Canyon-sized strike zone, there's no way you'd ever get named to a postseason crew. If you don't understand the dynamics of the division structure or the fact that fans of this rivalry would gladly watch these two teams go head to head for eight hours, let alone four, then maybe it's time for you to move on and focus on your music career.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Health (S)Care

Well, by the time this update gets posted, Barry O. will have signed the infamous health care bill into law. Get ready for all sorts of fun shenanigans. Like the requirement that everyone except the very, very poor--including lots of people living paycheck to paycheck--buy health insurance that's going to become increasingly expensive. "But Beast," you say, "they already make you buy car insurance!" "Yes, stupid," I reply, "but car insurance is to protect other people financially from you in the event that you kill them or dent the fender of their Maserati while you're tooling around in your Yugo." Health insurance is exactly the opposite. If you choose to go without it, the only one you're putting at risk is yourself and your own household. This is a case of big government deciding that they know better than you what's in your best interest.

And to further illustrate the car insurance about the "no denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions" example? This is the equivalent of calling up Liberty Mutual after you've already wrapped your car around a bridge abutment and being able to force them to sell you a policy that you can use to get reimbursed for its repairs. Sure, it's great for the person with the smashed-up car, but it's not a valid business model over the long term. Insurance companies (which are for-profit businesses, by the way) rely on the majority of people paying their premiums for at least a while before needing massive payouts in order to stay profitable.

But don't worry--the government-run Medicare and Medicaid will step in to take over a lot of the gap. Yep, that's what I want, the government, who can't even make a line to talk to a clerical worker run smoothly, managing something as complicated as my health care. Plus, in some states, these systems are already on their way to failure, and potentially dragging pharmacies and other medical businesses down with them.

But hey, we get the government we deserve, folks. Just sit back and watch some dopey bitch who's famous because she bred a litter better suited to a house pet than a human being dancing around, instead of getting informed. And don't come crying to me when your 401K is swirling in the toilet and you're waiting for days to get your compound leg fracture reset.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Beggars Can't Be Want To Be Choosers

Tastes so good, food banks ask for it by name!

Talk about publicity that's going to backfire. Imagine that you donate food, out of the goodness of your heart, to help those who are down on their luck or outright homeless...and they come back to you with a response worthy of John Kerry looking at a bowl of Chef Boyardee. Are you going to keep donating to these people? I sure won't. The arrogant, entitled attitude here makes me sick. Check out this quote from the article:

"Overall, if I'm going to cook, I want to be able to use my authentic products and brands because that's what's going to create the flavor that I want to achieve..."
Guess what? I don't pay taxes and bring food to collection drives so that you can have the flavor you want to achieve. This is for basic nutrition so that you don't starve to death while you pick yourself up by your bootstraps and get a freaking job. Anything above a white-label can is an exceptional bonus, and to ask for a brand name is to ask the people who support you to get offended and cut your snobby ass off for good.

Monday, March 01, 2010

More Over The Top Than Over The Top

I had a chance to watch Oliver Stone's magnum opus "biopic" W over the weekend, and all I can say is "wow". (And not in a good way.) I wasn't expecting Stone to give former (current, at the time of the movie's release) President Bush the Fox News treatment, or even fair and balanced treatment, especially in view of how he handled the subject of Richard Nixon in 1995 (suggesting, among other potentially libelous allegations, that Nixon was complicit with J.R. Ewing and a sketchy Cuban exile in JFK's assassination). But with W, Stone takes the cartoonish characterizations even further, and his cast is only too happy to indulge him. The worst offender has to be Richard Dreyfuss, as Dick Cheney. The real Cheney comes across in his media and public appearances as, well, a real Dick. Dreyfuss, on the other hand, is about as menacing as Shirley Temple, and he knows it, and so he snarls and sneers his way through the film and ends up looking like a Saturday Night Live parody character, rather than a serious portrayal. Add to that a series of events that just aren't supported by facts, and you end up with a film that even people who voted for Nancy Pelosi can't possibly take seriously. Oh, it's a good watch for unintentional laughs, like the Leprechaun series or Karate Kid III. But if that sort of laugh isn't your cup of tea, then stay far, far away.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Love Me Some Love Handles

Apparently, not only does being grossly overweight not only enable you to stop a nuclear meltdown in progress, but it also makes you bulletproof as well. I particularly love the article's ending quote from the shooting victim:

"I want to be as big as I can if it's going to stop a bullet."
This woman misses the point on two levels: first, unless she lives in the ghetto-y-est ghetto in Florida, she's far more likely to die from a heart attack, stroke, or diabetes than she is to ever get shot again. More to the point, if she got shot in the side fat, take away that side fat and that bullet misses altogether. With this level of cluelessness, I don't know whether to laugh at or weep for humanity. I guess it's a little of both at the same time.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

How To Watch The Vancouver Olympics

Unlike the glorified track meet that comes around every four summers, I'm actually watching a fair amount of the Vancouver Olympics. Of course, with multiple channels devoted to coverage and lots of simultaneous events, I've had to create a system to prioritize my viewing. Here's my keys to winter Olympic viewing nirvana.

  1. I'll watch my top-tier sports (hockey, curling) over my middle-tier sports (any kind of sled racing) over my lower-tier sports (skiing/speed skating/snowboarding).
  2. If there's multiple sports from a single tier on, I'll watch a medal round over a round robin/preliminary round. If that can't break the tie, I'll watch Team USA over two international teams. If that fails, I'll watch a men's event over a women's event. (Sorry if that makes me sexist. Actually, no I'm not.)
  3. If figure skating is the only thing on, I'll find something else to do. Seriously, I'd rather watch American Idol than that figure skating crap. And boy-oh-boy do I hate American Idol.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

We're Doomed

Audiences depressed that Avatar isn't real

That's it, people, it's all over. I officially resign from the human race. I'm not sure which species I'm going to apply to for asylum yet, but I'm leaning toward "cat". I just have to increase my flexibility enough to be able to lick my own junk. Just to put it into perspective, as I write this, the headline for this story is sharing space with the Haiti earthquake and the prospect of over 100,000 deaths. If you're reading this, and you're suicidal because sci-fi isn't real, do the rest of us a favor and act on your urges, especially if you haven't yet reproduced. (And let's face it, that's the most likely scenario for anyone who's depressed because Avatar is make-believe.) Future generations will thank you for it.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Paying It Forward

Obama administration considering charging banks fees to recoup bailout funds

Apparently, whoever came up with this scheme doesn't understand how corporations work. They answer to their stockholders first, last, and always, and what's good for the stockholders is not to cheerfully pay these fees and leave everything else equal, taking the hit as a decrease in their bottom line. No, these types of fees get passed along to bank customers, with the end result being less money in taxpayer pockets. It's a way of raising taxes again without announcing, "Hey, everyone, we're raising taxes again!" Look, every dollar the government spends comes from one place: you and me (unless you're reading this from another country). Raising "fees" (government-speak for "taxes") to "recover" tax dollars spent on bailouts is just robbing Peter to pay Paul. The only way to truly "recover" the money without taking it out of the people's pockets is to cut spending--something that this administration doesn't seem to get yet.