Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Fame (I'm Not Mad)

 Since The New Girl has to stay in Ohio to take care of her mother during her treatment - it's just best that we take a break.
(There is no benefit to settling for visits every two weeks or so for the next who-knows-how-many years.)
I'm now in the process of interviewing prospective New-New Girls.
One prospect commented that I always look serious.
But I never noticed this, it's just that I always have a lot on my mind.
She (as well as I) cannot understand how I can still manage to be popular even though I'm not necessarily 'nice'.
When she asked people about me, "Everyone loves John", is what she says people say.
"How are you so popular?", she asked.

But one thing I never understood or desired was popularity - and as far as "Fame", oh hell no.
Yeah... I can easily come across as being popular in most situations - but I just don't know 'Why?".
And the thing is, I'm never really popular - I just seem as though I am.
(Just like I'm not realy good-looking - I just look like I am.)

 Since I was a kid I've always favored the anonymous guy who swoops in, solves the problem and then leaves.
My first mental image of someone like this was the Silver Surfer.
When the surfer rebelled against his creator - I could relate.
When the Surfer was then deemed to be reprobate - I could also relate.
But the Surfer still did that which he believed was right.
While acting as the herald to the destroyer, the Surfer was seen as a 'Bad Guy' but the Surfer still strove to do good.
 Later in life, the Biblical and mythical Magi became my mentors.
Their spirituality and knowledge of the sciences allowed them to move freely (to an extent) where others feared to go.
Their abilities were so misunderstood that they were thought to be greater than the common man.
(Which is odd because 'humilty' is a trait often associated with the Magi.)
In the Biblical context, the Magi were seen as the 'Good Guys'.
 Still later in life, the Seraphim played a part in modeling my behaviors.
Neither good nor bad - A Seraph just did that which needed to be done.
But then The Matrix movies just solidified this model.
I just liked Seraph's cool and deliberate fighting style.
He was never excited or angry - he was just doing his job.
(The part was initially offered to Michelle Yeoh and then to Jet Li. Either could have played the part well as each also has an aggressive yet elegant and controlled style of fighting.)
The 'Kung Fu' angle stuck home because it refers to a skill acquired through long and hard work.
Most people think of being prosperous as living a life of relaxation and ease - but this is not the case.
Biblical stories tell of heaven being filled with people having specific 'jobs', of the rich man seeing that his barns were full and deciding to relax only die soon after and/or telling of future heroes being discovered while doing their daily chores.

Popularity, fame, status...?
You can have them - I've got other things to worry about.

The Things One Learns

We weren't bad kids - we were just kids.
But one thing we learned was how to break into those little security bars people put on their windows and doors.
As one of my cousins locked herself out of her house - this skill could be put to good use.
The trick is for a kid to hug two bars until they are slightly bent.
The next step is to grab one of the bent bars with both hands and begin to wiggle it until friction causes the weld to heat and then break,
If one repeats this, he is able to make a large enough hole for him to climb through.
After about half an hour, my cousin's son could crawl through the open window and unlock the front door.
I guess she doesn't feel as safe in her home now that she knows that even a kid can break through those security bars and gain access to her home in no time at all.


Maybe our food tastes too good.
Maybe it's too easy to consume.
Maybe we should have listened to our grandmothers when they told us to chew each bite twenty times before swallowing.

When we fail to properly chew our food we don't allow the enzymes found in our saliva to break down the starches, fats and proteins we consume. Our bodies know that they need these nutrients and if it takes three times the food to get the required nourishment, the brain may be telling the body to continue to consume until the required nutrient level is met.
Sure, the ratio of calories acquired to those burned has a lot to do with weight gain - but maybe the way we eat (or 'chew') our food is just as important.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Ecclesiates 1:2

40 Billionaires have pledged to give away half their wealth. I guess only a few understand the concept of "winning".

Are We 'There' Yet?

Similar to the story lines in video games or to the books of Homer or from the Bible - the Hero must defeat sub-bosses before he meets the penultimate boss.
The only tough people are those who've overcome tough situations - I've yet to meet a tough person who was raised being pampered.

One problem is that as ones abilities improve, so does his level of competition.
Just when he gains newer and better abilities and weapons and he overcomes one seemingly impossible task or opponent,  he is then thrust into a new arena with even fiercer opponents.
Many times, the choices and sacrifices one makes early in the game will be either a blessing or a curse.
Shortcuts taken will limit ones level of preparedness and hinder ones ability to advance further in the game.
Time and effort spent honing ones skills early in the game (even though there is no readily apparent reason as to 'why' this may be of benefit) often comes to ones rescue when all hope is lost.
(How many times have you been saved by knowing, doing or having access to something you forgot that you even knew about?)

The ultimate boss or adversary is often oneself, or ones ego.
Who has sought to do good only to be destroyed by his own greed, desires or vanity?
Who can put aside his ego and do what needs to be done in order to accomplish his ultimate goal?
Who can leave his life's work (and the rewards thereof) to the betterment of others?
Who can gain all only to give it all away?
(The man who can do all this is the only one who actually ever wins the game.)

Keep It Moving

Let's say that something is said to be impossible but highly desirable.
Now let's say that we have one million people looking at the same problem. (1,000,000)
Ninety percent of these will determine that gaining a desirable outcome is impossible and will not even look at the problem. (100,000)
Ninety percent of these will look at the problem and determine that it is just not worth the time, resources and effort. (10,000)
Ninety percent of these will grow weary and give up. (1,000)
Ninety percent of these will not be prepared to deal the problem. (100)
Ninety percent of these will get close to solving the problem and settle for just being close. (10)
Ninety percent of these will become distracted by the rewards gained by just getting close and will turn their attention towards status and popularity. (1).

It is often said that one has to be one in a million to succeed.
But the trick is to focus on the goal and everyone else will simply fall away leaving only yourself.
Being the 'one in a million' is not that hard - just as long as you keep working towards your intended goal.
(And if you fail? Who hasn't? If you have never failed you probably aren't trying hard enough to be great. Just try again. You're probably only competing against yourself anyway.)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

It's The Food

Or what's in it.

When asked whether food allergies could be what is causing more people to become fat, (blogger) DMG said that such thinking was ignorant on my part.
That food intolerance would cause one to lose weight.

But DMG is a surgeon.
He fixes problems after the fact.
Apparently there is a connection between food allergies and weight gain.
And with 'newer and better' food products being introduced into our diets everyday - maybe the bodies of many people are just trying to fight back.
Maybe the increased rate of obesity is just a natural reaction to the unnatural steroids, antibiotics and hormones being used in our food.

In A Ghetto Kind of Way

 While reading the comments section of a post from another blogger (DeeVee), I came across one reaction from a women who took offense that someone said that Meagan Good was, "Hot is a 'ghetto kind of way'".
The woman did not like that Ms Good was described as being 'ghetto'.

This wasn't a racist comment so much as it referenced the characters she often portrays.
It's like saying that Jamie Pressley is hot in a 'trailer park type of way' (read: sleazy).

"I'm Not Ghetto But..."

"I gotta pee.", a woman said as she squatted between two cars to relieve herself in the parking lot at WalMart.
A quick primer in ghetto euphemisms:
"Not Ghetto" - Ghetto
"Classy" - Tacky
"Grown and Sexy" - Immature and Insecure
Apparently, it makes more sense to say the opposite of what is meant.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

O' Bama?

The IRA, Bobby Sands, Thin Lizzy, U2, Boomtown Rats, Sinead O'Connor, Gingerism, Civil Rights, The Troubles... and now Barack O'Bama.
If any European country can identify with the struggles of Black people in America it has to be Ireland.


Women hate it when their bra may be a size too small and their breasts seem to be popping out of the top of it?
I don't know about other guys but I see no need for a perfect fitting bra which perfectly covers and supports a woman's breasts for a more natural look.
I'm more fond of the old push-up bra.
 Women also seem to favor things like blue eye shadow.
"Do you like my makeup. I went to the spa for the day!", a woman said as she approached me at her birthday party.
To me, the woman looked like Mimi from The Drew Carey Show.
"Hey... it matches your dress!", I said with a smile as I gave her a kiss on the cheek.
I guess she heard what she wanted to hear and accepted my comment as a compliment - but I hate blue eye shadow.

 The hottest women are those who look good without all the other help.
A woman in a baseball cap is hot.
A woman doing work is even more hot.
"Are you watching your 'porn'?", the New Girl asked when she called recently.
She knows that I like DIY's Rehab Addict.
I don't know why but I like the host.
She's not the best looking, doesn't have the best body but I think a woman doing work is just sexy.
A UCLA study suggests as much.
It seems that men's stress levels drop when their partners are doing housework.
(And women's stress levels drop when their men are helping.)

Maybe I'm just sexist or old fashioned but a good looking woman wearing a baseball cap with a push-up bra and only light makeup while building a new deck is my idea of the ideal woman.

Monday, May 23, 2011


Damn... now that's star power. Maybe I gotta' agree with CareyCarey on this one - Oprah is indeed the baddest bitch on the planet.
Even the NBA had to yield to her influence in scheduling for the Bulls-Heat playoff series.
The Oprah show is the biggest lead-in for local news programming nationwide.
Her exit creates a void which has news anchors Katie Curic and Anderson Cooper leaving their current jobs in the hope of capturing some of Oprah's Oprahless audience.
Barack Obama received a jump of 358% in Internet searches after first appearing on her show.
(Oprah is credited with influencing one million people to vote for Barack Obama.)
Her 70 book club picks have sold over 55 million copies to date.
Viewers have donated over $80,000,000.00 to her Angel Network charity.
Her departure is expected to cost the Chicagoland area more than $10,000,000.00 a year.

I'm no Oprah fan (My guilty pleasure is TMZ) but I gotta' give it up to the girl.

State Corp.

Chances are, you don't really own much of anything. You might still be making payments towards the deed or title of ownership but your actual ownership is probably years or decades away.
That the super-rich make money from your labors and loan payments without having any real interest in you is a shame but that's just how the current game is played.

Sure, some people could say that they also benefit from the current system by buying shares of stock through their 401k.
But this is not (yet) your money.
You are just loaning your future money to the super-rich so that they can buy more of what you make payments on and then sell it back to you where they will then turn around and charge you a higher interest rate than they are paying you to borrow your own money in the first place
But what are you gonna' do?
What can you do?.
In short..., nothing.
You see, you don't have a seat on any exchange.
You do not have enough wealth or power to become a member of The Club.
Your paltry 401k contributions only feed the bigger fish so that they can continue to eat all us guppies.

But what if there was a way that anyone could buy stocks in start-up companies?
What if we created a fund which allowed us to use our IRS tax refunds to buy stocks in companies which service the good of the general public?
Our infrastructure is said to be a mess - what if everyone were allowed to invest his tax refund into companies which work on such projects?
(Even the poorest working people get an earned income tax credit so the poor would not be excluded from investing in their own well being.)

Last year, the federal government issued $50,700,000,000 (source; IRS.gov) in tax refunds to residents of the state of California alone.
Much of this money could have been used to invest in... say, "Cali Corp" (CC - which would build and maintains high-efficiency electrical power grids).
CC would be owned by those who had the foresight to purchase stock in a start up instead of spending the same money on new rims.
(Not everyone would invest but at least they would have the same opportunity as the super-rich.)
As the maximum number of shares to be purchased would be limited to whatever ones tax refund check would be, no one could corner the market and gain an unfair advantage in ownership.
This new public/private ownership structure would allow each citizen access to information on how each company is run and how it spends it's money.
Since only tax refund money was spent in the first place, one could only be taxed if he sold his shares in any given company.

Think about it - publicly owned companies which run and maintain schools, power companies, construction companies, whatever... .
Everyone would be given a fair opportunity to benefit from his own labors.
Everyone would actually own the country's infrastructure.
But this will never happen.
The game is not set up to benefit the largest number people - the game is set up so that the select few benefit from the labors of the many.
If everyone had the same ability to own and invest in his own well being it would eliminate the need for many of the hegemonic parasites who run the country's banking system.
If everyone knew that being wasteful would hurt his own bottom line he may rethink the way he allocates his resources.
If everyone sought the good of all because he knew that it would ultimately benefit himself - people might actually begin to act in a responsible manner.
If being selfish meant that acting selflessly was the best way to be we would all be much better off.

Y.R.U. Gay?

Dwight is so gay.
Is this an incorrect statement?
Is it hateful to say it?
Apparently so.

Hermaphrodites, Chimerism, Biblical Eunuchs,... .
Some people may be born gay while others may be made to become so.
Why a person is gay is of no concern to me.
That they are gay isn't either.
Who a person prefers is his own business, what he/she chooses to do with that person is also his/her business.
If I see two males or two females kissing each other in public - so what.

My only issue is that I am being told that it is wrong to say that something or someone is 'gay'.
If I said that Brokeback Mountain, The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert, The Birdcage and Rent were my favorite 'gay' movies - is this wrong?
What if I said that these movies were, 'so gay'?

Okay, okay...
I can understand that calling someone a 'Dyke' or a 'Fag' is a pejorative term - but is 'gay' also a negative?
I thought we were told by the Gay Rights Police that "Gay" was the correct and accepted terminology.

I thought that "Gay" was OK.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Fat Hatred

I don't hate fat people, it's not my issue.
But many fat people complain that they are always portrayed in a negative light.
Hollywood often uses ones girth as a character flaw.
The Penguin in the newer Batman movies if a fat dude.
 Jabba The Hut is another fat villain.
 And Pearl (from Blade) is just grotesque.
 But being fat, jolly and generous are also memes used by the media to sell positive ideas.
 In some religions the fattest dude is the most enlightened of all.
Even modern culture celebrates an overweight celebrity as being something good.
As with everything, being overweight is not all there is to a person.
Being overweight and good is a'ight while being overweight and bitter is something to be avoided.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Not DeeVee

 But there are better choices.
I was at the house of a woman who does shift-work at one of the many local refineries.
As she packed her lunch filled with pre-packaged processed foods, I asked if I could make her a salad instead.
Shift workers have an increased rate of obesity and heart problems.
Their irregular sleeping habits inhibit their ability to heal.
Constipation is a common side effect of this lifestyle.

I received a call at three a.m., "John, I took the biggest dookie...", she said in relief.
"Now you don't have to take any medicine for that.", I said.
The benefit of better nutrition with additional fiber is a win-win for this woman.
Medicines are not always the cure.


Yeah... I'm all those things.
I'm everything you hate.
Everything you look down on.
I'm the lowest of the low.
Now that that is settled - let's get to the crux of the matter.

Style is not everything but looks do matter.
I like design but I don't (usually) like superfluous decoration.
(Halle Berry is good design while women who look like Mimi on the old Drew Carry show rely on superfluous decoration.)
Looks are used as a quick (although not entirely reliable) gauge of a persons health and level of fitness.
How many people are attracted to yellow teeth, dirty hair, bad skin, yellow cracked fingernails and/or toe nails, jaundiced eyes, ...?

Which would you buy if both cost the same?
This is not about being 'stylish' or 'trendy' but about making smart choices.
A rusted body, flat tires, broken gauges, frozen engine, worn brakes,... .
(As with cars, "Smell" is also a gauge used to make a quick assessment of a person's health. The smell of burnt fluids or parts is an easy way to tell that something is wrong with your car. Bad breath, sweet smelling sweat, putrid bowel movements, .... - all can be used to detect illnesses. But who goes around actively smelling people? Judging a person based on his or her looks is just a more convenient (although less reliable)method of making such an assessment.)
Why would most people want an old broken down car that doesn't run?
Sure, some take the time to restore these old vehicles to their optimal conditions but most would not see the potential.
Most would not want to spend the time and money required to do so.

But people are different.
If a guy says that he sees the potential in a woman and begins to help her improve her health, he is said to hate the real her.
He is said to hate (fill in the blank) women.
He is said to ridicule those who cannot help who or what they are.
He is threatened with being 'un-followed' by those to who take umbrage because they may feel that they are being picked on.

Unlike machines, people develop a concept of 'who' and 'what' they are.
This consciousness can help or hinder a person's progress.
This 'consciousness' may limit a person to rules which are dictated by both internal and external forces.
These rules may cause a person to group themselves with others who acknowledge the same limitations which, in turn, reinforces these limitations.

Other recognize these limitations as being more like guidelines than they are hard and fast rules which can never be changed or altered.
Like Neo in the Matrix, as one becomes more aware of these rules (and his place within them) he is able to work around many of them.

So no.
I don't post because I hate fat people. (Although I can't stand Mo'Nique and she is fat.)
I just post because many of these weight issues can be avoided.
Many of the issues with weight keep people in a position of dependency on economic and medical systems which are not designed to actually cure their illnesses.
Weight may just be the symptom, better choices might be the cure.

Judgement Day?

Nice knowing y'alll.
But wait...
If May 21 is Judgement Day then we won't get to see the last episode of Oprah.
Maybe Oprah has a deal worked out.
Maybe we will not miss;
May 21 - National Memo Day and National Waiter and Waitress Day
May 22 - Buy a Musical Instrument Day
May 23 - Penny Day
May 24 - National Escargot Day
May 25 - National Tap Dance Day
With the last episode of Oprah set for the 25th, I think most of us can count on living past the 21st.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Goods

 I'm just chillin'
Sure, I used to be a label whore but now I just get what I like and what fits my daily needs.
Robert Graham shirts are fairly standard.
Most can be worn with almost anything.
What I like are the contrasting cuffs and collars. (You see the guys on any of The Real Housewives shows wearing this brand all the time.)
But don't be a sucker, don't go to Neiman Marcus or Saks  to plop down two to three hundred dollars on a shirt.
Wait till they're past season and buy them at any upscale outlet mall.
The brand isn't popular enough to have a market for knock-offs.
And the brand isn't big enough yet for them to create a second-tier-outlet-only line.
My other most common purchase is a pair or two of these Donald Pliner Uwait slip-ons. (In brown and black)
Just go online and buy them half the $250 asking price of department stores.
Throw on a pair of Polo Khakis and you can go from one situation to the next without having to change clothes for each environment.

The Goods

 Trends come and go.
Often, what is popular one day may be obsolete the next.
Adidas used to be the dominant player in athletic gear.
Companies like Converse, Tiger and Puma (Formed after a dispute between the brothers who owned Adidas) were always nipping at the heals of Adidas in search of market share.
 When Phil Knight started Nike, he never imagined that he would be in a position to buy the entire Adidas company. (Nike now owns Converse and Adidas now owns Reebok)
Nike is now the dominant player in athletic gear.

But there is always another angle.
Large behemoths are too entrenched in success to be nimble enough to capitalize on emerging markets.
Companies like Under Armour (And now, to some extent, Adidas) take advantage of a counterculture not beholden to old power structures to create their own empires.
Sure, they learn the game from the big boys but they bring their own swagger, their own history, their own identity to create a new more competitive game.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Goods

 Back in the day..., I would drool over anything which had a Michael Cromer Munchen (Munich) label on it.
In fact, I still have a few pieces left.
I liked the brand because it still had the snob appeal of Louis Vuitton without seeming as though I was trying too hard.
 But then these track suits started popping up on the block.
MCM began to be known as "Money Cash Money" or "More Cash Money".
The brand became devalued because knock-offs were more common than the real thing.
Now even Kanye is attempting to bring the brand back (Now known as Modern Creation Munich).
This ruined the brand for me for the second time.
Maybe I should just shop at Sears or JC Penny for luggage and save my money instead.

The Goods

 I like good design.
Not decoration, but good practical design.
But can a water bottle be considered as good design?
Water is almost free - why do we need it to begin with?
And making a good looking bottle to contain an almost useless product makes no sense at all.
But these bottles look good on the shelves of ones Electrolux.
 When designers like Phllippe Starck, Paul Smith and Issey Miyake get into the game - you know such an endeavor is superfluous.
 Back in the day, a shelf full of blue TyNant bottles was all the rage.
These days a more ghostly design seems to be appearing on more store shelves.
Designer water in bottles created by top designers?
I guess we've really reached the apex of our culture...