Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Grim Reaper's Date With Hollywood

As the last few days of 2009 wind down, there is probably a collective sigh of relief echoed by anyone who is anyone. And it's just plain gratitude that they're still alive.

2009 was NOT a good year for celebrities.

Michael Jackson (entertainer, musician, music legend)

Dolla (Atlanta-based rap artist)

Ed McMahon (TV Personality)

Danny Gans (Las Vegas entertainer)

Jon Hager (musician and actor of "The Hager Twins")

Andy DeMize (drummer for "Nekromantix")

Pedro Aguilar (famous mambo dancer)

Gordon "Whitey" Mitchell (jazz musician and Hollywood TV writer)

David "Fathead" Newman (jazz saxophonist and original Ray Charles band member)

Billy Powell (piano play for Lynard Skynyrd)

Blossom Dearie (jazz and cabaret singer)

Louie Bellson (jazz drummer)

Molly Bee (singer)

Coleman Mellett (guitarist for Chuck Mangione's band)

Gerry Niewood (flugehorn player for Church Mangione's Band)

Estelle Bennett (singer)

John Martyn (guitarist, songwriter and singer)

Robert Woodruff Anderson (playwright and screenwriter)

Former Sen. Claiborne Pell (namesake of the college Pell Grant Program)
Griffen Bell (former presidential attorney general)

Natasha Richardson (actress)

Farrah Fawcett (actress)

Brittany Murphey (actress and singer)

Billy Mays (TV pitchman)

Erik Gates (Mythbusters Show Host)

Dorm DeLuise (actor)

Jett Travolta (Actor John Travolta's son)

Tom O'Horgan (Broadway and film director and composer)

Steven Gilborn (actor)

Cheryl Holdridge (actress, singer, dancer, former "Mouseketeer")

Pat Hingle (actor)

Henry Endo (actor)

Clint Ritchie (actor)

Bob May (actor)

Philip Carey (actor)

Susanna Foster (actress)

Ricardo Montalban (actor of "Fantasy Island")

Don Galloway (actor)

Patrick McGoohan (actor)

James Whitmore (actor)

Olga San Juan (actress and dancer)

Carl Pohlad (self-made billionaire)

Andrew Wyeth (popular American painter)

Martin Delaney (San Francisco activist)

James Brady (Korean War hero, New York writer and editor)

John Updike (Pulitzer Prize winning author)

Millard Fuller (founder and longtime president of Habitat for Humanity International)

Alison Des Forges (author, historian and human rights activist)

Beverly Eckert (9/11 widow, safer America activist)

Jeremy Lusck (freestyle motocross racer)

Nick Adenhart (Los Angeles Angels baseball player)

Payton Jordan (track star and Olympic track and field team coach)

Kay Yow (North Carolina State women's basketball coach)

Ingermar Johansson (boxer)

Harry Kalas (sportscaster for CBS)

Betty Jameson (one of first female American Pro golfers)

Billy Werber (oldest living Major League Baseball paler and teammate of Babe Ruth)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Hard Right, An Easy Wrong

Al Gore mentioned in his acceptance speech at the Democratic convention in August 2000 the need sometimes "to pick the hard right over the easy wrong."

Proof that truth is truth, wherever you find it. (And regardless of who speaks it.)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

US Healthcare Reform Bill= The Demise of Common Sense

Demise: Death, deceased. Terminate, end.

Common Sense
: prudent, of sound judgment. Agreed upon by sane and logical people as a good choice or decision.

What a tragedy.

Read This.

The Christmas Conflict

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

How Did We Allow This?

"If you are ashamed to stand by your colors, you had better seek another flag." ~Author Unknown

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Gift Ideas for Women

As if the holidays aren’t nerve racking enough with end of year work timelines, coordinating family and friend get together, cleaning and decorating your house and trying to do some seasonal events, there is the issue with shopping.

What do you get the women in your life without being too generic, spending too much or sending the wrong message?

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Bible, Torah & Koran Were Made Up

If the Bible is wrong, then several other religions that rely on characters in the Bible, and found in the Torah and the Koran are also wrong. Including the Christians, the Jews and the Muslims.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Velocity Tax

I’ve gotten about four speeding tickets over the course of my driving career. The first was for going 35 in a 25 mile zone at 5 a.m. on a deserted road. That was when I was still in California and going to school out there.

All the others have been in Virginia. And pretty much on the freeway. But then the 55 mph speed limit is really something of a joke. I never tried to be dangerous. Just get somewhere in a hurry. And sometimes that amounts to being thwarted.

Yeah, I know how to handle a car. And I enjoy velocity. It’s efficient and exhilarating.

But I’m a good driver. (Knock on wood) I’ve never been in a collision accident. I always use my blinker, turn on the headlights in tunnels and after dusk, and give other cars the right of way when it’s theirs. I not only wear a seatbelt, but my car goes no where until everyone in my vehicle is buckled up. No matter how short of a distance we go.

I obey the traffic signs and never flip off over drivers. Even when they deserve it.

So each time I got a speeding ticket I was more or less livid afterwards. Cool and collected while the cop was there. But after about 15 minutes of thinking about paying a fine and having nothing to show for the spent money pretty much made me see red.

Until I changed my perspective.

I recognize that the revenue brought in by tickets helps pay to maintain the city roads (and god knows they need some serious maintenance!).

I’m pretty sure the cops also need to pull over a certain number of cars a month. So I’m just doing my part to help the police get their quota.

In addition to that, I’ve decided to start thinking about it as a tax.

Taxes by their very nature are aggravating things. But they are facts of life. There’s no use in being pissed off about them since it changes nothing and at the end of the day (or year) you still have to pay them. I hate that, but I can live with it.

So a speeding ticket is now a velocity tax.

Like most other things that are in excess of the norm, you pay a “luxury tax”. So, as long as it’s not a regular occurrence and it’s not into the “reckless” range, I don’t get furious anymore. It’s just one more freaken’ tax to pay.

But that’s not so bad. Because you know what they say:

“The only guarantees in life are death and taxes.”

Monday, December 14, 2009

Gambling on Love

On a warm summer's evenin'
on a train bound for nowhere,
I met up with the gambler;
we were both too tired to sleep.
So we took turns a starin'
out the window at the darkness
'Til boredom overtook us,
and he began to speak.

He said, "Son, I've made my life
out of readin' people's faces,
And knowin' what their cards were
by the way they held their eyes.
so if you don't mind my sayin',
I can see you're out of aces.
For a taste of your whiskey
I'll give you some advice."

So I handed him my bottle
and he drank down my last swallow.
Then he bummed a cigarette
and asked me for a light.
And the night got deathly quiet,
and his face lost all expression.
Said, "If you're gonna play the game, boy,
ya gotta learn to play it right.

You got to know when to hold 'em,
know when to fold 'em,
Know when to walk away
and know when to run.
You never count your money
when you're sittin' at the table.
There'll be time enough for countin'
when the dealin's done.

Ev'ry gambler knows that
the secret to survivin'
Is knowin' what to throw away
and knowing what to keep.
'Cause ev'ry hand's a winner
and ev'ry hand's a loser,
And the best that you can hope for
is to die in your sleep."

When he'd finished speakin',
he turned back towards the window,
Crushed out his cigarette
and faded off to sleep.
And somewhere in the darkness
the gambler, he broke even.
But in his final words
I found an ace that I could keep.

You got to know when to hold 'em,
know when to fold 'em,
Know when to walk away
and know when to run.
You never count your money
when you're sittin' at the table.
There'll be time enough for countin'
when the dealin's done.

“The Gambler” sung by Kenny Rogers isn’t just a parable for life.

It’s a parable for love.

Regardless of differences, it is possible to make a relationship work. Every hand is a potential winner. But only if the people involved are willing to change themselves enough to mold to the person they are with. Only if the each person is determined to love and cherish this person in spite of the problems and stay together, playing the cards that life has dealt them.

Most people are not willing to do that though. If it’s not easy and fun, they want out. They don’t want to struggle and butt heads even if that makes you a better person. Because that’s what being in a relationship does. It forces you to take more responsibly and forces you to really scrutinize your faults and eliminate bad traits like selfishness, anger and weak character.

If two people are absolutely determined that they’re not going to let anything or anyone break them up, while their life might be a tumultuous one (and who’s isn’t anyway?) if they have the right attitude, the effort of becoming a unbreakable couple smoothes away each person’s character flaws and negative tendencies to make them amazing people they could not have become alone.

Even the most compatible people with the best relationship can fail. Every hand is a potential loser. No matter how much in common you have with someone, no matter how amazing each person thinks the other is, no matter how great you can be together, it is possible for that relationship to end. A relationship needs time and attention. Starting off with lots in common (interests, dreams, backgrounds etc.) give you a significant edge in making a relationship work. Typically the more you have in common, the more you can share together and the less you have to disagree on. But it’s still entirely possible to royally screw it up.

Giving into addictions (drugs, gambling, infidelity). Failing to maintain your love (ignoring their needs and wants, not spending enough time together having fun, not telling them and showing them you care) Letting other things in life distract you (career, hobbies, extended family, friends). Not evolving as people (learning to better compromise, growing and changing in positive ways).

All these can destroy a strong loving relationship. Possibly in a single night of weakness or by letting negativity and selfishness slowly over time eat away at the foundation of the relationship.

Without knowing who you are and what you want, you’ll never recognize love when you have it or be able to maintain it.

Knowing when to hold onto a person and work through the issues in a relationship
. Dig in your heels and say “No. I’m not giving up. We’re going to get through this. We both want this too badly to let it end now.”

Knowing when to hold back and give the other person room, freedom and a chance to figure things out so if they choose you, you both know it their choice.

There is also a time to end a relationship. Sometimes you have to let that person walk away. Or if you have to, you run the opposite direction.
Sometimes it’s so one-sided that you have to fold. If you don’t have enough to work with, it’s a waste of time and energy trying to be with someone who doesn’t want to be with you.

Then you move on. Focus on yourself for a while. Make sure you’re the best person you can be. Make sure that you’re showing all the signs of being someone who’s ready for a relationship and love.

Even when you’ve found a lasting love though, you cannot take a relationship for granted. Not while you’re both still alive/ sittin’ at the table. You can’t stop working at a relationship until you’ve passed from this earth- and the dealin is done.

The clues to whether you’re both committed and dedicated to making it a lasting relationship aren’t always immediately obvious, but they are there.

The gambler in the song never told Kenny Rodgers how to read faces, or how to know when it was time to fold’em, hold’em or run.

He just clued him into the fact that these are the things he needed to learn how to pay attention to so he could gain enough experience to make his hand a winner.

Because one of the biggest gambles in life, is about love.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Who am I?

I was born in one country, raised in another. My father was born in another country. I was not his only child. He fathered several children with numerous women.
I became very close to my mother, as my father showed no interest in me. My mother died at an early age from cancer.

Later in life, questions arose over my real name.

My birth records were sketchy and no one was able to produce a legitimate, reliable birth certificate.

I grew up practicing one faith but converted to Christianity, as it was widely accepted in my country, but I practiced non-traditional beliefs & didn't follow Christianity, except in the public eye under scrutiny.

I worked and lived among lower-class people as a young adult, disguising myself as someone who really cared about them.

That was before I decided it was time to get serious about my life and I embarked on a new career.

I wrote a book about my struggles growing up. It was clear to those who read my memoirs that I had difficulties accepting that my father abandoned me as a child.

I became active in local politics in my 30's then with help behind the scenes, I literally burst onto the scene as a candidate for national office in my 40s. They said I had a golden tongue and could talk anyone into anything. That reinforced my conceit.

I had a virtually non-existent resume, little work history, and no experience in leading a single organization. Yet I was a powerful speaker and citizens were drawn to me as though I were a magnet and they were small roofing tacks.

I drew incredibly large crowds during my public appearances. This bolstered my ego.

At first, my political campaign focused on my country's foreign policy. I was very critical of my country in the last war and seized every opportunity to bash my country.

But what launched my rise to national prominence were my views on the country's economy. I pretended to have a really good plan on how we could do better and every poor person would be fed & housed for free.

I knew which group was responsible for getting us into this mess. It was the free market, banks & corporations. I decided to start making citizens hate them and if they were envious of others who did well, the plan was clinched tight.

I called mine "A People's Campaign" and that sounded good to all people.

I was the surprise candidate because I emerged from outside the traditional path of politics & was able to gain widespread popular support.

I knew that, if I merely offered the people 'hope' , together we could change our country and the world.

So, I started to make my speeches sound like they were on behalf of the downtrodden, poor, ignorant to include "persecuted minorities" like the Jews. My true views were not widely known & I needed to keep them unknown, until after I became my nation's leader.

I had to carefully guard reality, as anybody could have easily found out what I really believed, if they had simply read my writings and examined those people I associated with.

I'm glad they didn't. Then I became the most powerful man in the world. And the world learned the truth.

Who am I? .........






(*I found this online, I am not taking credit for writing it.)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Gay, Straight or Bi? Check Your Hands

Feminine hands are often depicted in art as being thin, fairly narrow and with fingers that taper to the tips. Masculine hands are seen as thicker, wider palms and blunter fingers that are basically the same width from base to tip. However, there is no study that backs up these stereotypes.

According to research, there is a correlation between testosterone and estrogen and the length of certain fingers on a person’s hand.

Supposedly, a strong presence of testosterone in the womb causes the ring finger to be longer than the pointer/index finger.

Conversely, large amounts of estrogen cause the pointer/index finger to be longer than the ring finger.

Therefore having a ring finger longer than your pointer finger is manly. Having a pointer finger longer than your ring finger is feminine.

According to this bit of info, if you are genetically a male with a ring finger shorter than your pointer finger, you are likely to display feminine behaviors, identify with females, and possibly be attracted to other males.

If you are biologically female and have ring finger longer than your index finger, it increases the chances of your being masculine and feeling attraction to other females.

If your pointer finger and ring finger are of almost identical length, you just might be equally attracted to both males and females and identify with both.

Note: When you measure your fingers, you should measure the length of the actual fingers from where they start on your hand to their tip (not including where the nail extends beyond your flesh), not just compare where they meet on your middle finger.

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Greatest Christmas Decoration Ever

I don't normally do posts like this, but I was sent this as an email and it's too funny to not share.

"Good news is that I truly out did myself this year with my Christmas decorations. The bad news is that I had to take him down after 2 days. I had more people come screaming up to my house than ever. Great stories. But two things made me take it down.

First, the cops advised me that it would cause traffic accidents as they almost wrecked when they drove by.

Second, a 55 year old lady grabbed the 75 pound ladder almost killed herself putting it against my house and didn't realize it was fake until she climbed to the top (she was not happy). By the way, she was one of many people who attempted to do that. My yard couldn't take it either. I have more than a few tire tracks where people literally drove up my yard."

Friday, December 4, 2009

Barbarism For Love

Going back in time to be a “real princess” without basic human creature comforts.

Yeah right.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Upside of Porn

The complaints about porn are typical and practically historic. The arguments against it’s very existence are fierce and those who feel strongly about it are pretty vocal about their concerns.

Common complaints about porn:

• It’s addictive.
• It makes the viewer (male or female) feel inferior comparing themselves to people in the videos.
• It’s evil and immoral.
• It’s perpetuates “inappropriate” urges to have sex and in “inappropriate” ways.
• It makes people fantasize about people other than their partner.
• It raises the expectations in a relationship for sexual acts that may not be consensual to both parties.
• It’s a waste of time and money

The list goes on and on.

But where is a list for the positive aspects of porn? And yes, for an open minded person (even a woman) there are definite benefits to porn.

No one wants to be a bad lover.

No one wants to be with a bad lover.

Wouldn’t you rather become a good lover without having to embarrass yourself practicing on half a dozen people? And wouldn’t you rather know that the person you are with isn’t amazing because they’ve been practicing with half a dozen previous people?

While no one could (or should) consider porn videos to be a “how to” film on having sex, the fact is, once you get past the pulsating music and moaning, growling sounds, adult movies can be quite educational.

I suggest that adult films in moderation and used appropriately can be helpful and beneficial.

I would like to add the disclaimer, that I refer specifically about films in which the performers are enjoying their own and each other's bodies and doing consensual acts that they BOT like and take pleasure from. (I know there is a LOT of material out there that is about exploiting people's bodies, degrading women or their partner, creating a "master and slave" or subordinate and sensationalizing acts that are dangerous, cruel, painful, disrespectful and under normal circumstances would never be consensual or pleasurable. I am NOT suggesting anyone take notes from those films.)

The urge and drive to have some form of sex is inherent in all living things. It has to be so that the species will pro-create and continue to exist.

Not everyone however, is fortunate enough to be married or in a long term monogamous relationship where they can have regular intercourse. They might be too young*, too old, undesirable to potential partners, extremely introverted or living in a career situation (like military stationed overseas) that prevents the ability to maintain a healthy love life.

The body doesn’t understand or take into consideration any of these limitations. It still demands certain things for survival: food, water, sleep and sexual release. (Yes, sexual release is a vital part of maintaining a healthy chemical balance in the body and over all mental and physical wellness.)

Occasional access to adult films can help satiate that sexual release need
, even though sexual contact with another person cannot really be substituted anymore than water or sleep can be.

The act of touching, accepting, giving and receiving of pleasure and connecting on an intimate level is mentally, physically and emotionally vital for a person to live and function in a normal, healthy and balanced way.

While the urge to have sex is a completely normal (and necessary) part of adulthood, the art of love making doesn’t isn’t exactly something you’re born good at.

Adult films can be used by a person who’s never seen the opposite gender undressed, to become familiar with their anatomy before having a partner
. Let’s face it, the sex organs are kinda strange looking the first time you see them and looking at text books pictures don’t give the clearest picture of how they all function or look in 3D.

Relationships and connecting sexually can difficult enough without the added embarrassment of not knowing what to do, being shocked (or repulsed) when seeing the other person for the first time, and being afraid to touch them.

Adult films are very open about nakedness and how all the human parts can fit together. It really wouldn’t take watching more than one or two films to get the general idea of what the other gender looks like undressed and how they might enjoy being touched. This can relieve a lot of the tension and make intimacy feel like a more familiar and comfortable thing.

Couples who have fallen into a rut can use the occasional film to generate new ideas of ways to please each other or things to try. And since toys are often used in the films, it’s far more informative of how they are used and what they look like than viewing a sex toy shop online or walking through an adult novelty store.

Fantasies are sometimes better in our minds. Seeing a fantasy played out in a film with live performers can give a couple a better idea of what they’re considering before actually trying it. They might decide after watching it that it’s not for them, or that it could be just as much fun as they imagined.

The actors in adult films are typically fairly attractive, generally fit and nicely shaped. This doesn’t have to intimidate. It could motivate a person to get themselves in better shape if they realize it could improve their sex lives. Sex is after all a large component of a romantic love life and who doesn’t want theirs to be fantastic??

Many people who have had sex and are looking to commit to someone (ie. marriage) want to “test drive” their partner before locking themselves into a binding, legal contract. This is completely understandable. While watching an adult film together may not replace actually doing the act together, it could give a couple considering marriage a much stronger idea of what each others preferences and aversions are and if their sexual anticipations/ expectations will be compatible.

Of course, porn like other potentially addictive things (like eating fast food or playing video games) should be viewed in moderation. Anything that is used in extremes is unhealthy and dangerous. Even taking too many vitamins or drinking too much water is hazardous.

There will always be those who say otherwise, but porn doesn’t need to be something that is considered shameful or wicked. Just don’t show it to your kids, use it to replace intimacy with a partner or use it to make someone feel bad (maybe for not being wanting to experiment).

*porn is not for minors. But most 18 and 19-year-old are too emotionally young for marriage. Unfortunately that is when the sex drive, especially for guys, can be the strongest.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Tobacco State Turns Over a New Leaf

Virginia is a state rich with American history.

It was where the first English settlers landed in ...

More than half the Civil Wars took place on Virginia soil.

And it was the first state that planted tobacco to grow as a cash crop.

It wasn't until 1986 that legislation was passed prohibiting the sale of tobacco to someone under the age of 16.

You could say that tobacco's roots run deep here.

As of Today though, smoking is banned in most restaurants and bars. Since smoking inside stores, federal buildings and most businesses (libraries, hospitals, schools ect.) it's now illegal to smoke almost anywhere except on the streets and on private property.

And it's about damn time!