Saturday, March 23, 2013

Meet groundbreaking blogger Matthew Lee – a slob with a story

       Good Day World!

 Today’s topic is Matthew Lee, a unique blogger and pioneer in digital journalism. He’s sloppy and controversial. My kind of guy. Have you ever heard of him?

He’s an independent journalist whose muckraking coverage of the U.N. earned him profiles in the New Yorker and the New York Times has become a source of tension among the U.N. press corps — though he says he's been unfairly singled out by them because he refuses to conform.

On one side, traditional journalists at the UN have accused Matthew Lee of Inner City Press of making unwarranted attacks on them on his blog and to their employers, and along with U.N. officials, allege that he created a safety hazard with his very messy office (see photo).

Lee was one of the first bloggers ever given U.N. credentials. He's known for his aggressive questioning of U.N. officials, and when he was first accredited, his mainstream media colleagues seemed to respect him. The president of the UN Correspondents Association said at the time, "I don't see any difference in what he's doing and what we are doing."

Personally, I think Matthew Lee is Hunter S. Thompson reincarnated. He’s edgy. Maybe a little crazy. But he sure stirs shit up and is fun to read!

Time for me to walk on down the road….

Friday, March 22, 2013

Feeling Safe Still? Less air traffic controllers in America next month

Make sure to tell your congressman to kiss your ass today! Because he/she is part of a passel of idiots who are more concerned with brinksmanship than safety in the American skies. The result?

The sequester strikes! Now, we’ll get to see how safe it’s going to be at compromised airports. The Federal Aviation Administration released a final list Friday of 149 air traffic control facilities that it will close at small airports around the country starting early next month.

I hope that people who were use to flying the friendly skies safely are prepared to fly the “not-so safe” skies in the future. I don’t know about you, but the whole thing gives me a warm feeling…like when someone prods you with a Taser! 

Pepsi says it’s time for change and rolls out a new bottle

See this bottle? It’s design is brand new, and is the latest attempt by PepsiCo to gain back some of the market they’re losing to Coca-Cola in recent years.

The decades old competitors are American icons. Pepsi has done away with their old bottles that contained the beverage for 17 years. Yes, it’s the 21st century and things must change.

Change is good right? PepsiCo is hoping so!

Superstitions – take ‘em or leave ‘em, they’re here to stay

      Good Day World!

Today’s topic is superstitions. Everybody knows that if you spit on a new bat before using it for the first time it’ll be lucky…right?

 You didn’t know? Well, don’t feel too bad my friend, there’s a lot of superstitions. Tons of ‘em. I’ve got a list from A to Z right here for you to see.

Some examples of what you’ll run across when you click the link above:

* If your right ear itches, someone is speaking well of you. If your left ear itches, someone is speaking ill of you.

“Left for love and right for spite:
Left or right, good at night.”

* To dream of a lizard is a sign that you have a secret enemy.

* If you leave a rocking chair rocking when empty, it invites evil spirits to come into your house to sit in the rocking chair.

* Three seagulls flying together, directly overhead, are a warning of death soon to come.

* Seeing a spider run down a web in the afternoon means you'll take a trip.

* Weather -

“Red sky at night,
Sailor's delight.
Red sky at morning
Sailors take warning”

“Rain, rain, go away,
Come again another day.
Rain on the green grass
Rain on the hillside,
But not on me.”

* The number of Xs in the palm of your right hand is the number of children you will have.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, March 21, 2013

News stories that will leave you shaking you head …

         Good Day World!

Today’s topic is news stories that will leave you shaking your head. Either in surprise or wonder. The following offering of odd, offbeat, and main news is just a sampling of what’s out there. With no further ado, here’s today’s selections just for you!

The first story is about a family that bought a plain white, 5-inch, ceramic Chinese bowl.

As someone who watches American Pickers, Auction Kings, Storage Wars, and a slew of other programs that feature finding valuable objects I can tell you this garage sale find was the Holy Grail! Imagine this: three years ago you buy this bowl and just put it up on your fireplace mantle. Then one day you decide to see what it’s worth.

To your utter astonishment you find out your $3 garage sale pick is from the Northern Song Dynasty, which ruled China from 960 to 1127. It’s 1000 years old! But wait, it gets crazier: the only other known bowl of similar size and design has been in the collection of the British Museum for more than 60 years!

That’s right. You hit the mother load of all finds, because Sotheby’s auction house in New York sold your bowl for $2.2 million dollars!

Moving on:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

A great lost and found story!

For anyone who has ever lost anything and been lucky enough to find it, this video is for you.

If you’ve lost something valuable and never found it, try watching this anyway and pretend that it could happen!

I’m particularly impressed by one man’s honesty, and if you want to know who – this video you’ll have to view!


Surprise! Surprise! Remember when Gomer Pyle (Jim Nabors) use to say that to his high-octane, short-fused Gunnery Sergeant Vince Carter? Well, here’s a story about two police officers that recently got a big surprise! 

“Some Michigan police officers got a scare when a deer — spooked, probably wounded and apparently determined not to be roadkill — jumped out of the trunk of a parked car during an inspection!”


John Dillinger’s 1933 Essex Terraplane at Indianapolis International Airport.For a short time during the 14-month bank-robbing spree of Depression-era bandit John Dillinger, his getaway car was the fast and flashy 1933 Essex Terraplane, known as the T8. It was unveiled yesterday at the Indianapolis International Airport.

For you crime history buffs, this exhibit can be the starting point for a local tour of Dillinger hotspots. Go here for all the information you’ll need to have a Dillinger vacation.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

RIP Harry Reems: You had a wild life!

Harry Reems, the former porn actor best known for his role in "Deep Throat," has died at the age of 65. First reported by his friend Don Schenk, Reems' death has been confirmed by Gawker. Schenk wrote that Reems died of pancreatic cancer at a VA hospital in his adopted home of Utah.

It was really Frank Willis Who Took Tricky Dicky Down!

           Good Day World!

Todays topic is a security guard named Frank Willis. You probably never heard of Frank. He was just a common guy doing his job when he stepped into destiny’s doorway and doomed the presidency of Richard M. Nixon!

Here’s an interesting take on his fleeting moment of fame from

“There you are, getting ready for work, brushing your teeth, staring at the mirror, wondering if anyone is going to notice that zit... and then this thought kinda just pops into your head:

‘Today, I'm going to accidentally bring down the American government.’

Never happened to you? Security guard Frank Wills had no early warning either. With a hefty paycheck of $80 a week, Wills might have had good reason to believe he was well out of History's high beams. But in 1972, while patrolling the offices where the Democratic National Headquarters was, Frank noticed that little strips of tape was holding a few doors open. He tore them off. Coming back later, he saw that the tape had been replaced and, deciding that shenanigans were afoot, he called the police.

You all pretty much know the rest of the story. The burglars were arrested, tied to Nixon's re-election campaign and eventually, to the President himself. Amidst charges of massively illegal behavior, Nixon finally resigned in 1974, and was beaten to death in an alleyway behind a New Jersey Taco Bell.
No, wait. He became a bestselling author, and lived for years.

Wills, the hard working American who was just doing his job, managed to disintegrate into obscurity almost as quickly as he'd emerged. He played himself in the 1976 movie All the President's Men, but he didn't even get a raise for bringing down the government. In fact, when he left the job because they apparently refused to pay for vacation time, he found he couldn't get work anywhere else. One university told him that they didn't want the government to withhold funding because they'd hired him as a security guard.

Money went fast, and there wasn't a whole hell of a lot of it to begin with. He couldn't pay his electricity bill, couldn't afford to bury his mother, and had to wash his clothes in a goddamn bucket. And not one of those fancy golden buckets. In 1983, he was sentenced to a year in prison for shoplifting a pair of $13 shoes. And that was pretty much it until he died in 2000.”

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Clarence Earl Gideon: A little guy who stood up for his rights against a flawed legal system

       Good Day World!

Don’t feel too bad if you never heard of Clarence Earl Gideon. He changed history, although his legacy is lost to all but law students and scholars. I gotta tell you though, Gideon was no angel.

But, because of Gideon, an ex-con and poorly-educated gambler, you’re guaranteed legal representation even if you can’t afford it when accused of a state crime. In Gideon v. Wainwright, a unanimous Supreme Court declared on March 18, 1963, that the states were required to provide legal counsel for defendants in felony cases who could not afford an attorney.

Prior to Gideon, there was a loophole in the law and if you were indigent…you were guilty. I wouldn’t hold this guy up alongside George Washington or some other great American…but I do hold him up as a man who declared he was an American with rights…and proved it.

Read more about Clarence Earl Gideon:

A 'nobody's' legacy: How a semi-literate ex-con changed the legal system

Clarence Earl Gideon: Unlikely World-Shaker

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Monday, March 18, 2013

Bounty from the Sea: 2000 Pounds of Pot Scattered on Shoreline

Imagine you’re just going for a stroll on Arroyo Camada Beach and you stumble upon a bunch of big packages just sitting there…alone and unattended.

What do you do? The packages look suspicious, and you suspect there’s marijuana inside them. Do you grab one and run, hoping no one will see you stumbling along with it?

Photo from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department

There’s no way to know for sure who found this little 2000 pound treasure trove of Ganja, but the street value is estimated at $4 million. Santa Barbara authorities discovered a panga-style boat near the beached stash.

The word is, 20 panga-style boats have landed on this stretch of beach in the last two years. As for grabbing one of these bundles of boo, if I accidently stumbled upon it, I’d turn and run as fast as my out-of-shape 62-year old legs could go!

Meandering Monday: You could be a super human some day

        Good Day World!

 It’s the day after celebrating St. Patrick’s birthday, and there are a lot of woozy Irishman and wannabes this morning feeling a bit under the weather. So I’ll write today off as a meandering Monday. Here are a few odds and ends that have skittered across the news desks across the country recently that you may find interesting:

What’s it take to get banned from all the libraries on earth? Go here and find out. Then there’s the New York man who said he wasn’t aware laughing too loud was a crime. I’ve heard of hygiene freaks but this woman went too far when she stole $16,000 of toothbrushes from Kohl’s!

And how about the discovery of four-winged birds!?? Then there’s the family that robs together that won’t stay together after getting caught robbing a Wells Fargo Bank in Tooele, Utah. The kids were 5 and 2 years-old.

With the economy picking up I thought you might be interested in investing in some historical memorabilia. Here’s a hot item - Buzz Aldrin's 1969 guide to landing on the moon. Finally, I read here that some people think there will be Super Humans by 2045. I’ll be 109 years-old then, but who knows? I may be one of those Super Humans!

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Sunday, March 17, 2013

As It Stands: Actively seeking inspiration is one key to happiness


By Dave Stancliff/For The Times Standard
 Straight out; I’m not a famous inspirational coach and I don’t have a degree in philosophy. What I can offer however, is experience in actively seeking inspiration in life and why I think that’s a good idea.
Most people want to be happy. Environmental, physical, and mental challenges often prevent that from happening. I’ve seen many examples in the last 63 years. People I know and love who aren’t happy for one or more reasons. They hit a brick wall at some point and can’t seem to climb over it.
From experience, I can tell you if you look for inspiration around you, it’s there waiting for you to discover it. I’ve found it’s easier, for some perverse reason, to be negative than it is to be positive.
Being positive takes work. Being positive every day is a goal few can achieve, but the good news is the more you work at it, the easier it gets to be. One key to happiness that has worked for me is to seek inspiration from those who have it worse than I do.

Following stories about people who defy the odds is a feel-good pursuit I enjoy sharing with others. I’ve got a few good stories for you today to illustrate what I’m talking about:
The first is about Fred Butler, a 106-year old man who just got his high school diploma. His story has probably been experienced many times by many others. He had to drop out of the ninth grade to support his mother and siblings.
Along the way Fred was married for 65 years, raised five children, and served in the Army during WW II. You might say he did it all. Except for getting that high school diploma.
According to his daughter-in-law Cathy Butler, Fred always felt bad about not graduating from high school. Despite leading a full and productive life, he had that one regret. That is until he was awarded an honorary diploma during a ceremony attended by school officials and the town mayor last week.

 You see, Fred always told his children and grandchildren how important an education really is.
 The second story is about a man named Bill Southerland. He was born with type 1 diabetes and the doctor told his mother he wouldn’t make it to the age of 25. The doctor also said Bill was the youngest case of diabetes in the world at the time.  
 Bill, however had other plans and defied the odds. Not only has he survived his diagnosis through sheer willpower, but he’s thrived. He took his passion for cycling to heights seldom achieved by anyone and now manages a world class cycling program.
He led a Race Across America, and used his journey off and on the bike as a way of change how the world views diabetes. I highly recommend reading his book, “Not Dead Yet,” if you want to know more about him and the amazing things he’s done with his life.

The third story is about Stephanie Deckler, one of the bravest people I’ve ever read about. She proved the power of a mother’s love is unconditional and death-defying. Last year a deadly tornado ripped through her family’s Ohio home.
Without hesitating, the 37-year old mom protected her two young children with her body as the tornado sucked them into its vortex. Her quick action saved the children’s lives, but both of her legs were mangled so badly that they had to be amputated. Thirty-nine people died that terrible day in March 2012.
Later, during an interview with an ABC News reporter, she told him, “I stayed conscious the whole time. I couldn’t afford to pass out. They needed me. They had to have me, so I had to figure out what to do.”
Stories like this give me goose bumps. Ordinary people doing fantastic things every day of the year. We seldom read about them because bad news seems to dominate the mainstream media - it’s sexier than someone who survived a tornado or overcame a potentially fatal disease.
I’ve noticed that some networks wait until the last portion of their broadcast to throw in one “feel good” story. I think that’s nice, but more balance throughout the broadcast would be nice too.

I really get sick of hearing about the violence in this country. I believe more inspirational stories about ordinary people would give us all a much needed positive daily boost.
As It Stands, I read somewhere that inspiration can be found in many things, but the most inspiring thing to me is people who overcome life’s adversities.

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...