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Last Visit 2011-01-17 23:04:23 |Start Date 2004-11-03 18:51:40 |Comments 1,935 |Entries 529 |Images 250 |Videos 22 |

11/27/07 09:44 - 30ºF - ID#42310

Greetings

A road update - its been a long time since I did one of these!

Today was one of those days that a year ago would have pushed me to quit my job on the spot... I think that the time off has settled me down a bit and is allowing me to adapt better to ridiculous and untimely requests. Plus my boss dangled the golden carrot at us today so that certainly helps matters, doesn't it?

First of all, hello from Owen Sound, Ontario. Where is Owen Sound? Google it you lazy to$$er! This week we have been tasked with various visits around Ontario but mainly around greater Toronto. Owen Sound is as remote as it will probably get for us in Canada. They say there is a town about an hour and a half north of here, but I have a feeling that if I started inquiring about dinner after arrival, somebody would hand me a spear and point to a body of water.

We had a breakdown in communication that ended up taking us north of our initial visit to do an extra audit. Our drive was pleasant but a little startling - we in Buffalo are familiar with whiteout conditions but I have to say I'd rather not deal with it in November. Our intention was to drive to Brampton but as it turns out they completely closed off our intended route due to MULTIPLE FATALITIES that had occurred while we were working. Ok - I'd heard enough and so we changed our hotel booking to this pleasant hotel in town. We got a tip on a nice Montreal style bistro - I scratched every itch in this tired body and had a glass of red, french onion soup and a burger. God I cannot remember the last time I ate a decent burger! This one had a half pound of beef, ham and melted swiss cheese on it. After dinner I drank a little carbonated beverage and treated my co-worker to what must have been a confusing smell after I belched sort of in his face, by accident. He should feel lucky that I didn't choose the pork mariposa.

So, since I happened to have mentioned the golden carrot you must be wondering what I meant. What I meant is that 9:15pm reservation at Ruth's Chris that we made tonight, with the only limit imposed on us being a two beer maximum. Considering that this detour means that I'm going to be up at 6:30 in order to make it to our first audit, then another 1.5 hours to our second audit, then another hour to our hotel - trust me, my boss is going to feel the burn on that credit card statement! I think I'll have a ribeye, sweet potato casserole w/pecan crust, creamed spinach and some cabernet, followed by 10 hours of well earned sleep.

I've also been enjoying the sensationalist Toronto media. I have been reading the Star, the Sun and the Globe and Mail every day. Wow, they really really hate John Ferguson Jr., the current GM of the Leafs. Adding to the intrigue was tonights Toronto/Montreal game - I like TSN's broadcasts.

Despite the hassle, and even without the extras my boss threw at us for doing this, I have to say that I feel fine and am enjoying my stay in this small, sleepy bayside town. I just worry about getting enough sleep to make it through the day, and for today if thats my only worry then I think that I can't ask for much more.
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11/21/07 11:11 - 45ºF - ID#42219

Pre-holiday amusement

neo-con **** liar

  • you glen you ****ing ***** . neo-con **** sucking whore's like you and rush and hannity . can go to hell for your petty lies. you don't want to pay taxes leave you whiny bitch whore. you and rush are lazy selfish whore's who can do **** but complain like Republicans on crack . taxes pay for your lifestyle and i not going to give rich people welfare because they came out of one whore's crack. and the oil and drug companies don't need money they steal enough . just like the CEOS do now days . lay off thousands and get a ****** ****** and leave . i could do the job cheap and easy. get rid of the CEOS and get someone who knows what is going on with the companies who has worked under stupid CEOS who don't **** but sucked bush's **** in the skull and bones in school . rob the workers pensions and blame it on bull**** and steal millions for ****** work . **** you glen beck you little man , a whore for a season's like your neo-con buddy's rush and Sean . a chicken hawk to boot . **** you ***hole

Bob Cote


See this shade, and many more shades, of the true colors of the radical left @
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11/20/07 10:44 - 52ºF - ID#42211

Positivity trumps negativity

Heavily edited - in other words, completely erased.

The entry served its purpose and although I don't feel better by any stretch, at least I got it out of my system. I should turn this into a post about fighting negative thoughts. Hell, why not?

Even the most optimistic of us have our bad days. Nobody is exempt from having something bother someone to the point where that individual goes through a mini-depression. The thing is, nobody talks about it. Its not good, or its not proper, or its not polite. For me thats unacceptable because a) you may be denying yourself a glimpse into your reality that would benefit you, and b) so many people out there suffer and feel alone in their own little universe, and feel alone needlessly!

The truth is that we're not alone when we feel down. Its a part of human nature - its part of our design. In a morbid kind of way, I think that we all have to experience the highest highs and lowest lows because otherwise you'd be cheating yourself of the full range of human experience. Its easy to be philosophical when things don't go your way, but tell me this is not true! R.E.M. wrote an entire album about the joys, mysteries and difficulties of the human experience. Its called "Automatic For The People" and the album just had its 15th anniversary; Stereogum released an entire retooling of an album, track by track, with a different band assigned to each track. Its free to download, but I'd also encourage to get the original if you don't have it - its as essential an album as I could imagine. Michael Stipe is right when he says everybody hurts sometimes, and that even the bad stuff in life is necessary to validate our experiences.

(e:jay) and I have always used a bit of a trick when we see bad things happen to good people. "It could always be worse." While this is certainly true, that does not mean that your current issues aren't real and important. Granted, this requires a serious amount of perspective, which some people lack and will never have. Those people will learn the hard way but you, you my friends, you are different; most of the people reading this understand that fashion means fuck all in comparison to medical problems, as an example. Still though, having perspective is extremely difficult for somebody deep in depression.

The question for me is, how do you help people with seriously negative dispositions fight through their problems? For the love of God Owen Wilson, an actor who by all accounts seems to have a charmed life, wanted to exit stage left. This is somebody I feel for to a great degree, and I think a lot of people do, because he seems like a relatively responsible Hollywood type whose suicide attempt came as a huge shock. Everybody wants to know what is bothering him. My question is, how can we help people like that to help themselves? There are no easy answers but I bet people around Owen Wilson wished he would have talked about it.
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11/15/07 10:44 - 45ºF - ID#42135

Its official - NYU students are stupid!

For proof read this -

Also, I just wanted to express my opinion about the current writers strike. How the fuck are these people unionized anyway, and why? I see this as a complete and utter mockery of "worker's rights." All 500 writers at ABC News are on strike. My first thought was, "my God it takes that many people to produce crap on a regular basis?"

The public have absolutely no sympathy for these people, judging by the articles and responses I've read since this thing started. Ultimately, the writers want more pay from the studios who market "their" creative product. Rarely when you are working for a company do you actually own or have a right to the things you do for your company. I sympathize with people who feel like they deserve to get more out of their work. But this isn't about working conditions, its not about fair wages (find me an underpaid writer in Hollywood or for ABC News, please), its not about guaranteeing that people won't get fired unfairly - its about getting more of a cut of the proceeds that the studio generates.

Writers will never be akin to construction workers, and frankly I'd be very satisfied if the studios let these writers' contracts expire and bring in non-union writers, if at all possible. There will never be a shortage of writers who would die to write for television, union or not... particularly in Plastic Fantastic La La Land. These people are sorely in need of a reality check. How many shit television shows have premiered in the past five years anyway - it makes me wonder if the studios have gotten their moneys worth from the writers to begin with!
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11/14/07 04:07 - 57ºF - ID#42117

Intriguing Article Titles

I regularly read TSN's site so I can get the Canuckistani point of view on hockey. What is the title of the first link on the right hand side?

Leaf's Tlusty Regrets Controversial Photos

After seeing this, there is no way I'm glossing this one over... and I seriously doubt you would either. Please indulge yourselves -

There was no stopping my search for this scandalous photo. There is no way I'd leave you all hanging on this one, so here it is -

image

OH GOD PUT THE SPLASH GUARDS DOWN FOR THE MAN ON MAN!
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11/14/07 02:33 - 57ºF - ID#42114

Camille Paglia - A Scorcher!

I regularly read Camille Paglia's column on salon.com. I think that part of the attraction for me is the sheer audacity and viciousness that she sometimes displays.... towards other progressives! She is a self-described progressive feminist, and a lesbian to boot. Honestly, for me its utterly bizarre to read the thing she writes considering the demographic she comes from. I can't compute how she can refer to global warming as "the new liberal theology," the assumption of human culpability with respect to global warming as an "act of hubris" and Ellen DeGeneres' meltdown on national TV as an act worthy of a "Raspberry Award for worst performance by a lesbian icon." Wow. Really. WOW.

For me this is incredibly compelling. Camille really is the sort of devastating woman that I'd love to share a drink with. I wonder if (e:lauren) hates her. I suspect that she's more dedicated to feminism and Democrats in general than what people expect out of her... which is of course involves ascribing to radical progressive dogma commonly associated with people like her. Anyway, if there is a feminist out there that other feminists hate, I'm definitely interested in what the hoopla is about.

Click here to see what I mean - - topics include Hillary Clinton (and who would be a better female Presidential candidate), global warming and Norman Mailer. I have to say, I think she takes cheap shots (what liberals don't? I just listened to an hour of Paul Krugman doing it on NPR describing his new book) but is entirely fair about Norman Mailer.
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11/13/07 11:33 - 47ºF - ID#42103

$189 a plate Turkey Day + Pakistan

Before I get into the Pakistan stuff I wanted to highlight this blog entry from MSN Money. Its an excellent entry about the economic realities of "shopping for a better world" as well as the ludicrousness of a $5/lb. heirloom turkey. She makes a lot of points about shopping at Wal-Mart that are absolutely correct - its real easy to put yourself on a soapbox when you can actually afford more expensive groceries. Activists often never consider how their self-righteousness actually affects people they didn't think about to begin with... due to said self-righteousness. I think a larger point is also made, although its unspoken - if you eat gourmet on Thanksgiving, you just might be a douchebag. Thats my take on it though!

Pakistan - I'm appalled at what is going on there. I think our government made a critical mistake putting all our GWOT eggs in one Pakistani basket - now we are reaping what we are sowing. However, if you've paid attention to American history at all, you'd know that this isn't the first, the second or even the third time that we have allied ourselves with disturbing individuals. Noam Chomsky will bore you to tears talking about it. During WWII we were allied with Communist Russia; during the Iran-Iraq war, we backed Saddam Hussein. It has always been done in the spirit of living with working with a lesser enemy if it means the destruction of a greater enemy. This is how the US of A, for better or worse, has always done things.

In particular, the US Congress has the power to eliminate funding that Pakistan currently enjoys. Why don't they do it? I have to say, Democrats have been incredibly disappointing. We went through an entire election cycle filled to the brim with anti-Bush bullshit and Democrats ended up riding a Blue Dog wave to a slimmest of majorities in the Senate and an unstable majority in the House. The Kool-Aid drinking non-thinkers actually are blaming President Bush when in fact the one group of people that could affect Musharraf the most at this point (from an American perspective, anyway) is actually a bi-partisan Congress with a backbone. After their exhilarating veto override of the recent $23 billion pork barrel water bill that was rolled down the aisles of Congress, you'd think they would be up for a fight against something they all should deplore.

So, why is nothing being done? Congress are sitting on their hands because of the same reasons that war funding hasn't been cut off yet - there is absolutely no political will to make a decision that could have a directly negative result. What about the Bush Administration? At first their lack of action and cautioned words puzzled me until the obvious answer struck - there is no interest, despite how shady Musharraf is, to have a nuclear Pakistan with a power vacuum of any sort. Meddling in other countries affairs has left egg on our faces twice (or more, if your heart bleeds for those Communist revolutions Reagan snuffed in the 80's) in the last 50 years. I hesitate to say that the Bush Administration is being wisely cautious, since the two words almost never go together let alone separately in a convo about President Bush. Certain political realities and self-interest are precluding us from doing the right thing - we can leave it at that.

The Administration is unsure about to what degree they can actually affect things in Pakistan at the moment. These aren't the days of the CIA in the 60's where we can go in covertly and place in a figurehead. These days we replace leaders by direct military force. Remember - Pakistan to a degree is radicalized and people there definitely love Osama more than Musharraf. Nobody is interested in having that country fall into Islamicist hands. At the moment it appears that Bhutto would certainly be the leader and essentially is the leader, if not officially at least in spirit. She has twice been removed on allegations of corruption, and it has to be mentioned that under her government she directly funded and gave military support to the Taliban. Now she says she is against them. So, how do you choose between an aspiring dictator and a former Taliban supporter who "allegedly" skimmed off of government contracts and banked nearly $2 billion in Switzerland? If its to be believed, she is no different than Saddam Hussein was in terms of ripping off her own people for personal gain.

In the end, I always say that as long as the people want it, democracy should win every time. The truth is that it doesn't. We cannot force Musharraf to resign any more than we could have prevented the coup that put him in power. Its an obvious problem, however, that the world is looking to us for a strong condemnation and because we are unsure of the outcome we say very little. Then again, never in the course of American history have we held our allies to a higher standard. I love my country - there is no better on earth. Immigrants even break the law to come here for a better life. However, there are two things that I can say make me embarrassed to be American; the first is our legacy of slavery and the second is our seemingly time-tested need to ally with dysfunctional leaders in order to protect or pursue our own interests. Couldn't we have done better than Pakistan and Musharraf? Personally I don't care if Bhutto is corrupt - if the people want her, they should have her. They can sort out their own mess later, but I suspect if she was overthrown twice there is nothing stopping her from being overthrown a third time - perhaps by the Taliban.
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Category: advice

11/08/07 02:55 - 40ºF - ID#42046

Stupid Dating Article + Artvoice

Hey ladies, did you know that you can learn make assumptions about your man based on what gaming platform he prefers?



I can't fucking believe that somebody got paid to write this.

Speaking of writing, I was reading last week's Artvoice (its officially obsolete as of today) and was delighted to read the "Ask Anyone" section on the inside of the back page. I was born to write these sorts of responses to peoples questions, given my cynical and humorous approach. The "gay perspective" is particularly funny. I really should be writing these for Artvoice, but until that happens I'll simply post my own responses here for you to enjoy.

Q1.

I have two questions:

1. I have a friend who uses the wrong words all the time - like he'll say, "Oh, this weather is grandiose today." Should I correct him?

2. I have another friend whose table manners are not very good. He is about to be interviewed for law jobs, and I know the firms will take him out to eat. Should his friends (I'm not the only one who notices) tell him how to use a fork and so on?

I really like these guys and I don't want to offend them, and I know I'm not perfect.

- Buffalo Guy


Ronald Raygun says (the responses in the article have pseudonyms so why can't I?): Considering that your own grammar is... like utterly shocking like, why should you be the one to correct your friend? Personally I think that your objections to his language has more to do with you than it does him. You find his language annoying - fair enough. I suggest you learn how to use an adjective before attempting to correct anybody. You think you are clever and you are not. In England they would refer to you as a muppet - would you accuse them of speaking improper English as well?

As for your friend with table manners, thats an entirely different story. Consider this - we are talking about lawyers here, not about the fucking Queen of England. I find it hard to believe that your friend eats like a caveman. Lawyers occupy the lowest professional rung so lets not put them on a pedestal, okay? If you think that your friend should be trained to hold his knife and fork only in specific hands in order to be able to impress a lawyer, I have to say that you think too highly of the profession.

I'm starting to think that one of two things must be true; either all of your friends are knuckle-dragging neanderthals that cannot speak English or eat properly, or it is you that desperate needs some counseling despite your laughable caveat about not "being perfect" yourself. Leave your friends alone - your obsession with their "faults" are patently obvious and deserve more careful study than table manners ever would.

Q2.

Help! I think I'm falling in love with a guy who drives a Hummer with a Bush-Cheney sticker on it. (My friends don't even call him by his name; they just refer to him as 'the Republican'). Should I get out now, and risk losing someone great, or stick around and risk ending up with Archie Bunker? And if I don't stay, does that mean I'm as intolerant and prejudiced as I thought he would be?

- Lefty Leaving


Ronald Raygun says:
Your friends are idiots if they refer to someone you love solely on his political ideology and not his name. If you actually loved this guy as you claim you do, you wouldn't tolerate this immature nonsense and you sure as hell wouldn't speculate that he may end up being Archie Bunker. Its obvious to me that you don't love him, and its obvious to me that you are being bigoted. You've suspected this yourself, so I can't say that this should be a surprise to you. You are assuming he is a bigot based on his political ideology (you would certainly know by now if in his heart of hearts he is a bigot), and then you turn and ask if not being able to tolerate his politics makes you a bigot yourself. The answer to this question is: of course it does. You should get out; not for your sake but for his. He doesn't deserve this sort of behind-the-back, sordid evaluation. If James Carville and Mary Matalin can make it, I'm sure that you and Mr. Hummer could. You're shallow and have a narrow world view that prohibits you from entering relationships with people you disagree with and make a litany of assumptions about.

The issue isn't him but you - trust me. If politics is the hang-up that makes a relationship unworkable for you, then you deserve Chairman Mao and not Archie Bunker. The complaint isn't the Hummer but the politics - it seems that you enjoy an affluent lifestyle. If you want a provider with deep pockets and a liberal worldview, call John Corzine. I hear he is a risk taker and enjoys having gas guzzling SUVs he is riding in drive at excessive speeds.
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11/01/07 11:39 - 41ºF - ID#41929

WOMEN - heed this advice!

Tired of wondering where Mr. Right is? Listen to this lady to avoid your pitfalls. You might get uncomfortable reading what she says.


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11/01/07 03:13 - 49ºF - ID#41921

Where I'm going

Salt Lake City - I think they are sending me there next week for a days work, not including a day of travel. Anybody know if its a dry city?

image

It is beautiful though.
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mike said to mike
Well really I did not bury the hatched in my mind I guess because now 5 years later, I just saw him ...

mike said to mike
Well really I did not bury the hatched in my mind I guess because now 5 years later, I just saw him ...

mike said to mike
Well 14 years later I have more grays but still solidly more pepper than salt so that's good at leas...

mike said to mike
Well 14 years later I have more grays but still solidly more pepper than salt so that's good at leas...