Saturday, March 15, 2014

Beware the Ides of March – Julius Caesar didn’t and look what happened to him!

 Good Day World!

 Just saying.

 Some people consider March 15 as a bad luck day. It sure was for Julius Caesar. It’s just another day to me. Here’s what happened this day in history:

 The Ides of March is a day on the Roman calendar that corresponds to 15 March. It was marked by several religious observances, and became notorious as the date of the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC. The death of Caesar made the Ides of March a turning point in Roman history, as one of the events that marked the transition from the historical period known as the Roman Republic to the Roman Empire.

As many as 60 conspirators, led by Brutus and Cassius, were involved. According to Plutarch, a seer had warned that harm would come to Caesar no later than the Ides of March. On his way to the Theatre of Pompey, where he would be assassinated, Caesar passed the seer and joked, "The ides of March have come," meaning to say that the prophecy had not been fulfilled, to which the seer replied "Aye, Caesar; but not gone."

This meeting is famously dramatized in William Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar, when Caesar is warned by the soothsayer to "beware the Ides of March." The Roman biographer Suetonius identifies the "seer" as a haruspex named Spurinna. (via Wikipedia)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Friday, March 14, 2014

Chocolate Chicken is Coming Your Way Soon

Good Day World!

Here’s some food for thought on this TGIF…

Someone has come up with a recipe that even chocoholics may find a bit too far out. Chicken lovers will be stunned because NO ONE has thought to cover their clucker up with chocolate yet!

I can just see it now: it’ll be “death by chocolate” for the chickens, who will be drown in large vats of dark chocolate. There’s worse ways to go. Actually, that’s not quite how it goes. Check out ChocoChicken and you’ll get the real scoop on this new taste sensation.

I can’t imagine how it would taste. According to the man who is marketing this breakthrough culinary concoction, “It tastes like happiness.”

Umami Burger mastermind Adam Fleischman is prepared for people’s reaction when they find out about his latest culinary adventure, a not-entirely-appealing-sounding fast-casual outlet called ChocoChicken that's set to open its first outpost in L.A. in April (an exact date has yet to be set).

First, a little background. Fleischman is best known for his hamburger restaurants, which have transformed the beef patty into a precision-engineered delivery system for umami (the Japanese term for a certain sort of savoriness--think soy sauce or mushrooms)

ChocoChicken grew out of a cold pitch from two people Fleischman had never met.

Fleischman tweaked the formula a bit ("I added a few key umami ingredients that really brought it to another level," he says), and the menu will also include appropriately off-kilter sides like white-chocolate mashed potatoes and bacon biscuits served with sauces that include, a bit worryingly, something dubbed ChocoKetchup.

Time for me to walk on down the road…



Thursday, March 13, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Do you really need a special day to go retro?

Good Day World!

For those of you who are still resisting entry into the computer age, I should explain what Throwback Thursday is.

Basically, social media users (Bloggers, Twitterers, Instagramers, etc) like to have weekly posts with themes. Whoever thought of Throwback Thursday doesn’t really matter.

All that matters is posting something retro. Like an old picture of yourself in diapers and chocolate cake smeared on your mug.

People seem to enjoy this activity. From all reports social media participation in this weekly event is growing. Will we start seeing mainstream news with special segments called: Throwback Thursday soon?

Because I’m not a regular boob tube watcher, there may well already be special slots on news programs where the anchorman has to share old photos of himself doing odd things like frowning into the camera when he was six-years-old displaying two teeth in a gummy mouth.

I wouldn’t be surprised. There’s a certain lemming effect when it comes to entertainment venues crossing over to the other side. If it’s good for getting views (lot’s of interest) on your blog, Twitter and so on, then it’s capable of crossing over to cable.

As far as going retro on a regular basis, it seems like a rather redundant way to reel in new viewers or get comments. I suspect it’ll be like a fad and have a shelf life someday. Just not soon!

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

On missing planes, mysteries and conspiracies…

Good Day World!

There’s nothing like a mystery to get people’s attention.

I’m talking about that Malaysian Plane that vanished recently.

News reports say there were two passengers with false ID’s aboard that flight, and the CIA isn’t leaving out the possibility it’s disappearance is terrorist-related.

As the days gather with no solid news on where the plane went, expect conspiracy theories to start popping up like wild mushrooms in the spring.

Meanwhile, to put this all in perspective, there’s been other passenger planes that have vanished without a trace.  

The first recorded passenger plane to disappear was in 1938 when the Hawaii Clipper (Photo above), a Martin flying boat, on route from Guam to the Philippines.

The plane left Guam at 6:00 p.m. CST, and last contact was made at 10:03 p.m. CST.

The pilot reported over the radio that he was 565 miles from the Philippine coast, and was flying through “layers of clouds and moderately rough air.”

Eerily similar to the current Malaysian Airline case, a “thick oil area” was found on the ocean surface where the plane was suppose to have gone missing.

The search proved fruitless, and it was called off on Aug. 5, 1938.

The Hawaii Clipper‘s disappearance was the worst Pacific Ocean airline accident at that time.

There is a website devoted to the missing plane.

via 9 Passenger Planes That Have Gone Missing Without Explanation

Current News on the missing Malaysian Plane:

CIA Director Says He Can't Rule Out Terrorism on Malaysia Plane

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

To Be, or Not to Be, a Terrible Tuesday–That’s Today’s Question

Good Day World!

Today our topic is Tuesday.

Like Monday, some people hate Tuesdays, and some people love them.

Take this fellow. He can’t stand them:

“I hate Tuesdays. They are my least favorite day of the week.
A lot of people hate Mondays more than Tuesdays, but I disagree.  Mondays are actually sort of special. You officially and finally conclude your weekend and prepare for another workweek.  You pick up where you left off after a two day reprieve.  Sometimes Mondays are shitty, but they only end up that way.

They don't start out that way. At least you don't wake up on a Monday and say, "This is a shitty day."  You usually make that assessment sometime after you get into your day.
Tuesdays, on the other hand, are loaded with all the crap you couldn't get done on Monday.

Tuesdays have Monday's problems tied to them and probably kept you fitfully awake the previous night, lowering your resistance to the stressful onslaught of this week's work crap.  Tuesdays start out shitty, right from the moment you open your eyes if you got any sleep at all.

Tuesdays have no distinction.  They are not the beginning, the middle or the end of the week. They are a crappy day, a blue day, and one we could do without. Tuesdays are so blue, in fact, that they are the only day of the week that I wear Aqua Velva aftershave (which is colored blue if you don't get it, unlike Mennen Skin Bracer and most other aftershave lotions that are green).

It's my symbolic way of recognizing Tuesday is going to be a shitty, blue day; one with which I want to get on and get over.” (read the rest here)

Now let’s look at the positive side of Tuesdays:

Here’s a blog called One Love Tuesdays that I think you’ll find real interesting. Remember, it’s always up to us what kind of day we’re going to have. It’s about perception.

Time for me to walk on down the road…


Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday’s aren’t universally hated although it may seem like it!

 Good Day World!

Monday…Monday…so good to me!” (Lyrics at bottom)

 Why does it seem like lots of people hate Mondays? Is there any empirical truth to this common assumption?

Discover why people hate Mondays and what you can do to make them better.

Despite the beating that Mondays have taken in pop songs — Fats Domino crooned “Blue Monday, how I hate blue Monday” — the day does not deserve its gloomy reputation.

Apparently Mondays aren’t as blue as some think.

Arthur A. Stone and two colleagues recently published an analysis of a remarkable yearlong survey by the Gallup Organization, which conducted 1,000 live interviews a day, asking people across the United States to recall their mood in the prior day.

They scoured the data for evidence that Monday was bluer than Tuesday or Wednesday. They couldn’t find any.

("Monday Monday" was written by Phillips, John Edmund Andrew)

“Monday, Monday, so good to me
Monday morning, it was all I hoped it would be
Oh, Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening, you would still be here with me

Monday, Monday, can't trust that day
Monday, Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way
Oh, Monday morning, you gave me no warning of what was to be
Oh, Monday, Monday, how could you leave and not take me?

Every other day, every other day
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes
But whenever Monday comes
You can find me crying all of the time

Monday, Monday, so good to me
Monday morning, it was all I hoped it would be
But Monday morning, Monday morning couldn't guarantee
That Monday evening, you would still be here with me

Every other day, every other day
Every other day of the week is fine, yeah
But whenever Monday comes
But whenever Monday comes
You can find me crying all of the time

Monday, Monday, can't trust that day
Monday, Monday, it just turns out that way
Oh, Monday, Monday, won't go away
Monday, Monday, it's here to stay

Oh Monday, Monday
Oh Monday, Monday”

Read more: The Mamas & The Papas - Monday Monday Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Beware of politicians promising a return to the ‘Good Old Days’


   What Good Old Days?

   I know there are people who pine for the years following WW II, from 1945 to 1965, when “everything was better.” America had emerged as a superpower and a manufacturing force second to none in the world. We were number one.
   Historians quickly called the generation that won the war the “Greatest Generation.” Their children were given the best of everything in life. The American Dream was within every man’s or woman’s grasp.
   But something happened. When those children became teenagers, the world shifted slightly and societal changes came hard and fast. Vietnam, Hippies, Drugs, Free Love, and college students leading  protests against war.

   Let’s hold it right there. I want to discuss the “Good Old Days” (as defined above) a little further. Do you think African Americans and other people of color thought those were the Good Old Days? Frankly, I doubt it.

   If you were an African American living in the deep south from 1945 to1965, you lived in another America. One that had no dreams. No hope. You survived at the whim of the white man. You couldn’t eat in the same building or shop in the same store because of your color.

  Let’s not linger on this aspect of the supposed Good Old Days too long, but it does have to be examined. Instead, let’s look at a whole new view of the Good Old Days. Are you ready?

The reason they were considered the Good Old Days was simple; people didn’t know what was happening everywhere in the country and the world. They were uninformed for the most part, especially in rural America.

  So they didn’t know all the terrible things that happened in a 24 hour news cycle worldwide. They were not bombarded with all that negative news and views. There was no internet. Sure, they heard news on the radio,  but music dominated the airwaves and the movies from 1945 thru 1965.

  I wouldn’t say ignorance is bliss, but in some cases it seems preferable to knowing too much and being stressed out about things you can’t do anything about. Try to imagine what it would be like to not to hear all the negative things you hear every day.

  I think it’s fair to say technology has advanced considerably since those Good Old Days. We’re living longer in the 21st century. Because of robotics, we’re actually more productive in the workplace than in the Good Old Days when we were a world leader in manufacturing.

  I know that sounds odd, especially when you compare the workforce in the Good Old Days when jobs were plentiful, and the workforce today with over 8% of all Americans unemployed, and jobs as scarce as water in our current historic drought.

  Moving on, I really don’t think there were ever any “Good Old Days” in the sense that everything was rosy, or people were all nice and respectful to each other. Progressive and regressive forces have always battled it out.

Some people have selective memories, which make those days of yore so special. Which leads me to a warning about politicians who use our faulty memories of a golden age that never existed to political advantage. You know the ones I’m talking about. They promise to “turn the clock back to a better time.” Whatever that means.

  They pledge to bring morals back to the country, and more of the Christian God to our government. They invoke memories of the “Greatest Generation,” and promise a new one - just like the old one  - is on the way. They lie.

  You can’t restore a myth. You can’t change a society and turn the clock back to a dream that only existed for some white Americans. There were wars being fought worldwide, crime at home, segregation issues and all the terrible things we face as a society today were going on back then, too.

  Some politicians, vultures seeking your votes, will try to tell you they can bring back the Good Old Days, and say we once lived in a patriotic utopia.

As It Stands, when you hear people calling for those Good Old Days, take a moment and ask them to what good old days are they referring?

-Dave Stancliff

(This column originally appeared in the Times-Standard newspaper on Sept.2, 2012)

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...