Saturday, July 14, 2012

Joe Paterno's halo removed from Penn State mural

No man, or woman, should be painted with halos, because they ARE NOT angels. I’m sorry, but if you have a halo that means you’re one of God’s servants…at least according to the Christian faith. Right?

Joe Paterno was no angel. He was a great coach, but that will forever be overlooked because people will remember how he enabled Sandusky all of those years while those boys were being molested.

 Artist Michael Pilato adds a halo over football coach Joe Paterno's head to a mural in January in downtown State College, Pa. Pilato created the mural several years ago. On Saturday, Pilato removed the halo - Photo - Pat Little / Reuters

Today’s Feel-Good Story: Family Fulfills Dying Man's Wish: $500 Tip For Waitress

The waitresses reaction is really cool…

          Good Day Humboldt County!

 I really enjoy reading about stories that are so uplifting.

Yes, it’s kind of bittersweet, as it’s about someone dying, but his last wish was something so special it’s going to keep on giving beyond what he envisioned:

“A Kentucky man's family fulfilled his dying wish when they left a $500 tip to their waitress at a Lexington restaurant a few days after he died, the NBC station WLEX in Lexington. And that wish has turned into something bigger.

Before he died July 7, 30-year-old Aaron Collins told his family he wanted to eat pizza and leave the server a large tip, but didn't have the money, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported. His family raised the money through a website that Collins' brother Seth started. (Source)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Controversy or diverson? Olympic uniforms made in China rile some people

 I think it really stinks that our National Olympic Team’s uniforms were made in China. Having said that, the controversy over the uniform’s origin has ignited senators and citizens to cry “foul!” over the purchase.

What makes me laugh is the fact that we purchase billions of dollars worth of clothing from China annually, but these uniforms are the straw that broke the camel’s back? C’mon folks, let’s get real. Look at the big picture. I think this “controversy” is the work of the mainstream media, pols looking to divert people from real issues, and some Tea Party types with time on their hands.

‘Nuff said…here’s some links:

Outrage Over Ralph Lauren's 'Made in China' Team USA Olympic Uniforms

Lawmaker outraged over team USA's uniform

Growing Outrage Over Team USA’s Olympic Uniforms Made in China

American religious institutions losing members due to lack of confidence in them

   Good Day Humboldt County!

The numbers don’t lie. Church attendance across the board is down. Organized religion has never been under more scrutiny by the public than now. Scandals have eroded the church’s credibility.

Is it any wonder that millions of Catholics have left the church because of the ongoing sexual abuse that has been exposed?

Televangelists acting badly helped destroy people’s beliefs when they took their money in the name of God, and bought themselves all the luxury’s possible in this world with it. The question I have is; what do people turn to after their religious beliefs have been turned upside down? 

“Americans' confidence in religious institutions has hit an all-time low, with only 44 percent expressing a "great deal" of confidence in organized religion, according to a new Gallup survey.

This follows a downward trend since the 1970s, when 68 percent of Americans had a high degree of confidence. Gallup cites two big blows to confidence in organized religion: 1980s scandals involving televangelists like Jim Bakker and the Catholic sex abuse scandal in the 2000s.

It's also worth noting that organized religion is far from the only institution in which Americans are losing confidence. Americans also are souring on schools, banks and television news, according to Gallup's survey.”

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, July 12, 2012

TRENDING: Cities that declare bankruptcy – San Bernardino makes 3

I was talking with my sister who owns a house in San Bernardino yesterday, when she asked me if I heard the city was declaring bankruptcy? I didn’t and was surprised.

Her house, valued at $500,000 before the recession hit, has been reduced in value to $250,000.

“I’m getting out of here,” she assured me.

I asked where she would move to? Her answer was typical of her, “Anywhere but here!”

Let’s see now, Stockton and Mammoth Lakes both declared bankruptcy recently, so San Bernardino makes three in California in the last 30 days…a trend? 

in the news today..

“San Bernardino became the third California city in less than two weeks to file municipal bankruptcy protection Tuesday night when the city council voted to make the move in the face of a $45-million budget shortfall.

Shortly before the council's vote, Interim Mayor Andrea Miller recommended the city of 209,000 seek bankruptcy protection due, in part, to its inability to make payroll over the next three months, the Los Angeles Times reported.(source)

Here we go again – the financial woes of another country are now our problem

              Good Day Humboldt County!

Every time I hear about financial woes overseas I cringe, because it means the U.S. is going to feel the impact.

We, you and I, are going to suffer because criminals in another country, the U.K., got caught manipulating bank rates late in June.

I don’t know about you, but I think this global economy stuff sucks! Every time another country threatens to default financially – think Greece – the rest of the world has to scramble to save them from themselves. Now, criminals from another country are ruining people’s lives here.

It’s like one big game of deadly dominos…when one falls the rest follow: 

“It may seem like just another obscure banking scandal at a 322-year-old British bank, but there are a number of good reasons why you should care about the LIBOR rate-rigging scandal now roiling the world’s biggest and most powerful banks, including that it probably cost you money if you own a mortgage.

Robert Shapiro, former Under Secretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs in the Clinton administration and now chairman of Sonecon, an economic advisory firm, warned Wednesday that the LIBOR scandal could become the largest financial fraud in history.

Shapiro wrote in a blog Wednesday that “coming on top of the reckless and dishonest behavior that led to the 2008 financial collapse, the LIBOR manipulations should finally dispose of the conservative case for self-regulation by Wall Street.” (Source)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

TSA Agents at Louisville Airport Steal Deaf Man's Candy, Call Him "Fucking Deafie"

TSA_FuckingDeafie_LouisvilleA group of students leaving the annual conference of the National Association of the Deaf in Louisville had a rather awful experience courtesy of the Transportation Security Administration in that city's airport.

One of the travelers wrote about it on his blog:

It was a very public week-long event downtown, make no bones about it. As such, the shirt very clearly identified me as deaf.

While I was going through the TSA, some of them started laughing in my direction. I thought it might’ve been someone behind me, but I found out otherwise.

They went through my bag (for no reason), and found a couple bags of candy I brought. I was told I wasn’t allowed to fly with that (wtf? I’ve flown with food before — these were even sealed still because I brought them right in the airport). I was then asked if I would like to donate the candy “To the USO”. Since I know the airport there has an Air National Guard base, and I figured it would go to the soldiers, I (annoyed) said sure, why not?

The guards, as I was getting scanned, started eating the candy they just told me was for the soldiers. In front of me, still laughing at me (very clearly now). One of them asked why they were laughing, and one of them came up to me, pointed at my shirt, laughed at me and said, “Fucking deafie”. The Louisville TSA called me a “fucking deafie” and laughed at me because I was deaf, and they expected wouldn’t say anything back (or wouldn’t hear them). Make no bones about it — she was facing me and I read her lips. There was no mistake. I would later find out that they had called at least 4 other individuals the same thing. (story by Mike Riggs)

H/T BoingBoing

UPDATE: Teaandtheatre (the Tumblr account of the above complainant) is down. A commenter at Boing Boing says that the author "is concerned for negative consequences for himself and other people with disabilities. He was venting primarily to other people with disabilities.  This post has gone way past what he wants."

So if you click through, and the Tumblr page is down, that's why. We'll update as soon as TSA responds.

A Promise Broken: Black Lung disease still the bane of coal miners

       Good Day Humboldt County!

The following story is another example of corporations ignoring weak laws set down by Congress. With no one to enforce the laws, it’s business as usual for coal mine operators who are looking to cut corners at every opportunity. Even when those opportunities endanger worker’s safety and ultimately their lives:

Via PBS: Deadly Black Lung disease rises among coal miners

Via Open Channel on MSNBC: Deadly black lung surges back in coal country

“Amid strikes throughout the West Virginia coalfields, Congress made a promise in 1969: Mining companies would have to keep dust levels down, and black lung would be virtually eradicated.

The disease's resurgence represents a failure to deliver on a 40-year-old pledge to miners in which few are blameless, an investigation by the Center for Public Integrity and NPR has found. The system for monitoring dust levels is tailor-made for cheating, and mining companies haven’t been shy about doing so.

Meanwhile, regulators often have neglected to enforce even these porous rules. Again and again, attempts at reform have failed. In the hard-won 1969 law, Congress demanded that dust be controlled and new cases of disease be prevented. The idea was that, even if black lung didn’t disappear, there would be a small number of mild cases.”

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Hang Around For Humor: Louis CK Takes a Stand on Smoking Pot

Sit back, but don’t relax…this guy keeps ‘em coming!

             Good Day Humboldt County!

 There’s nothing like taking a stroll down humor lane when you need a “pick-me-up.”

 The weight of the world slides away, and the sound of your laughter makes your own day.

Is there a funnier comedian than Louis CK right now?

 I am a huge fan of the late Mitch Hedberg, but outside of a few legends, CK is owning the comedy scene right now.

 He has the wit of George Carlin, the balls of Bill Hicks, and a voice all his own. He is the comedian who says what we are all thinking, but says it way cooler and funnier than any of us could. Take for example, his personal stance on smoking pot. The hilarity lies in just how right on he is.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Monday, July 9, 2012

Take your time: How many creatures can you see in this image?

zrhyehThe most prominent is the Elephant, at the top of the head, followed by the white rabbit on his nose.

This is because our brains are drawn to the most obvious, straightforward, image first.

This is an effective illusion; on the whole it resembles a portrait of the human face with its muscle tones revealed, beneath the skin, particularly with the use of reddish brown tones.

Illusions such as this have become popular posters for their artwork.

Count the animals. can you see them all?


Drive-in theaters are making a comeback across the USA–but don’t expect it to last

           Good Day Humboldt County!

Back when I was growing up in the 1950s, going to a drive-in movie was a weekly experience for my family. When I got into high school, drive-in theaters took on a new importance; making out! If you were lucky enough to have a van you backed it up to the screen, opened the rear doors and got real comfortable.

Most of us had cars however, and it was common to try and sneak in by hiding in the trunk. Imagine if you will (because it did happen) one guy driving up to the ticket window driving a big old Chevy …alone…and smiling as he purchases a lone ticket.

Sometimes we turned our headlights off and drove in the exit. About half of the time we were busted by roving attendants who followed our car to a parking place. That practice ended about halfway through high school when theaters started using “dragon’s teeth” for those who tried entering the exit!

When my buddies and I were so broke that we couldn’t even afford to pay to drive in a theater, we use to sit behind the rear fence – turned on the whole row of speakers and and watched the movie from there. Sometimes attendants came back and turned them off and told us to scoot. We’d wait until they were gone then hop the fence and turn them back on again.

Oh, those were the days! My first kiss! My first girlfriend! My first speeding ticket, as I raced to get my girlfriend home on time on our first date! It’s nice to see this comeback… but note at the end of the article what’s coming down the line:

“Load the family in the car. Drive-in theaters are making a comeback.

New outdoor theaters are opening, and shuttered ones are being revived as people rediscover the pleasures of watching movies outdoors with no restrictions on chatting, screaming kids, cellphone use or smoking, says Kipp Sherer of

The website, which tracks and celebrates the industry, says there are 364 drive-ins in the USA, down from their peak of at least 4,000 in 1958. In 2007, there were 406. The first drive-in theater opened in Camden, N.J., in 1933.

"People love the communal experience," Sherer says. Bart Lower and his family decided to build a drive-in, Danny Boy's in Ionia, Mich., after Google told him that more than 90,000 people in Michigan search for "drive-in movie" each month. The theater opens this month.

"It's going to be a new way to see a movie for a lot of people," Lower says. Paul Allsup hopes to rescue the Linton Drive-in in Linton, Ind., which opened in 1948 and closed in 1999. He expects to open in late August or early September.”


•Tulsa's Admiral Twin, which opened in 1951 and burned down in 2010, reopened June 15. "The community kind of rallied around us and started actually just giving us money to rebuild," co-owner Blake Smith says.

"There is definitely a resurgence of drive-ins," he says, maybe because people "are tired of the sterile environment" in multiplexes. Rising land values a few years ago "pretty much caused all the drive-ins to go away," Smith says.

•The Full Moon Drive-in opens July 20 in San Diego. "People are really connecting with nostalgia," partner David Adler says.

•Cameron Grimm and Paul Goodson have formed a foundation and plan to operate the Skyvue Drive-in in New Castle, Ind., as a non-profit. They hope to reopen it in May.

•The Blue Starlite Drive-in opened Wednesday in Austin. It can accommodate 50 cars and 100 walk-in customers; a parking lot that owner Josh Frank had been using had room for far fewer.

Sherer warns that the revival might not last long: The movie industry is switching from 35mm film to digital, and many small drive-ins can't afford digital projectors. "A lot of drive-ins most likely won't open next year," he says.”

Time for me to walk on down the road..

Sunday, July 8, 2012

AS IT STANDS: Who would you like to have lunch or dinner with?


                     By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
I wouldn’t pay
to have lunch or dinner with anyone. Flat out. No way. I don’t care who they are, just the thought makes me cringe.   
So when I see people bidding to have lunch with Warren Buffet in an annual charity fund raiser, I can’t help but roll my eyes in amazement at how much cash people will pay for the pleasure of dining with the Nebraska billionaire.
This year was a record-breaker; the highest bidder ponied-up $3,246,789! Can you imagine? Can you imagine having that much money to throw away? Oh excuse me! Not throw away; donate.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s great that the money is raised for a charitable purpose. But where’s the thrill? You have to admit, as far as prizes go, this one is kinda weird. Unless, of course, you’re a rich person who would like to see if you could get richer by rubbing elbows with Buffet.
Someone is probably standing nearby during that power lunch, snapping photos for posterity. The winner can frame them and put them on his/hers bragging wall. Autographed too, I’m sure. After all, for that much loot it’s the least they can do.

 I wonder. If you had a choice of who you’d like to have lunch or dinner with, who would it be? While you’re mulling over my question over, allow me to make some recommendations for your consideration.
 How about Steve Carell? You want to have some fun during your lunch? This guy will make you laugh so hard you’ll gasp for breath. I’m sure he’d be a kick to eat with. I like him because he edited a newspaper - just like me. Of course he was in high school at the time, and when I did I was married with three kids.
 How about Keith Morrison of Dateline fame? It’s entertaining just listening to the guy talk with his perfect pitch and timing. He could tell mystery stories during lunch. I can see other diners stop what they’re doing to hear his fluid and eerie voice describe a murder scene.

 How about Derek Amato? Who is he, you ask? He’s a guy who stupidly jumped into the shallow end of a pool while clowning around and cracked his skull. However, that fateful accident brought Amato an unexpected gift: it turned him into a musical savant. Now he plays the piano like a virtuoso and writes his own music.

 How about Emmelyn Roettger? She’s 3-year-old, with an IQ of 135, currently the youngest member ever admitted to Mensa. I can only imagine what a fresh outlook this child must have on issues in our society. I think it would really be fun to watch her eat messy food and calculate the mass of a city block.
  How about Mehran Karimi Nasseri, also known as Sir, Alfred Mehran (yes, including the comma), an Iranian refugee who has been living in the departure lounge of Charles de Gaulle Airport since August 8, 1988?  Caught up in a passport snafu between two countries, Sir, Mehran could probably give you some good travel advice - like does and don’ts of living in an airport. Where else can you get that kind of first hand information?

  How about David Icke? This former professional football player, BBC television sports presenter, and British Green Party national spokesperson will probably give you the creeps, but his story is entertaining.
 Since 1990, he has been what he calls a "full-time investigator into who and what is really controlling the world: reptilians.” He dresses only in turquoise and believes the world is ruled by a secret group called "The Elite," a race of reptilian humanoids, known in ancient times as the Babylonian Brotherhood.
 He says George W. Bush, Queen Elizabeth II, and Kris Kristofferson are descendents of “The Elite.” Who am I to argue? A lunch or dinner with this guy might even convince you he’s on to something…like drugs!
 By now, I imagine you’ve given it some thought and have come up with a better selection than I’ve offered here. If that’s not the case, and you get the opportunity to go out to lunch with one of my suggestions, please let me know how it goes.
  As It Stands, friends and family often say I’m “out-to-lunch,” but at least I’m entertaining!

Here’s how to say,Do you want to have lunch/dinner with me in Thai”: “Yark phai gin khao duay gun mai?”…just in case you wondered…

Blog Break Until Presidential Election is Over

I finally hit the wall today. I can't think of what to say about all of the madness going on in this country right now. I'm a writer...