2017-08-05

Now I Don't Wanna Go Off On A Rant ... But ...

For the most part, I'm a fairly laid-back guy who's pretty easy to get along with, as long as you understand the basics of life:

1. Know your role.
2. Stay in your lane.
3. Show your work.
4. Do your job.

Sometimes, as Mary Chapin Carpenter said, that's too much to hope for, but not too much to ask.

Unless you work for the U.S. Postal Service in the Niles branch and your name is Jamie. With an E (remember that, because it matters). Jamie apparently doesn't know her role as a public servant. She couldn't show her work because she wouldn't do her job. But she damn sure stayed in her lane of abject apathy you find in almost all long-time union-protected governmental employees. In fact, it's what some of them are known for. 

Here's the situation:  Allie and I are getting our passports for a cruise in 2018. We filled out the application online, printed it out, got our photos taken, had our birth certificates and copies of our ID as required by the easy-to-follow instructions on the Department of State's very informative website.

All we needed to do was have an official from the U.S. Postal Service check the documents out, fill in a couple of info boxes, verify we are who we are, that the photo presented are actually photos of us, have us affirm we are U.S. Citizens and watch as we sign in the box swearing as much, take $270 ($110 each for the passport that goes to the federal government, $25 each for processing that is the local fee) and ship our paperwork off to be molded by more long-time union-protected governmental employees.

"We only do this by appointment," she said, after calling a ginger guy over to help the ONLY OTHER PERSON in the post office at 11:05 on a Saturday morning, "and we don't take appointments after 10:45 because it takes 30 minutes per person."  I explained that we had everything the law stated we needed to have. Everything, that is, except a willing postal employee to process the documents for us.

She continued, "We only do this by appointment. I have an appointment today after hours for two people because they take so long." Immediately, my brain is like "Since when does ANYONE who works at an actual Post Office (not letter carriers), especially Niles, do ANYTHING for ANYONE after regular business hours? Shit. You walk up at 12:00:02 on a Saturday and the door is locked."


"There's no where on the official State Department's passport page listing you as an official passport application acceptance office that says you only take appointments, or we would have made an appointment. We waited to come here on Saturday so we could do this together," I explained nicely to her. "It's not like I'm holding up a line or anything. It's 11:10, you don't have another appointment until AFTER you close, so you have time."

"No. You have to make an appointment," she said, flatly refusing to listen to my reasoning. Yep, She was staying firmly in her lane as a long-time union-protected governmental employee. Having worked for the State of Ohio, I know the pose, the posture and that she wasn't going to process our paperwork on this chilly, but sunny Saturday morning.


It was 11:12.  That's when I was done. Done with her, done with her less-than-helpful attitude and decided to let her know, albeit without the destruction of governmental property, because that's how you get arrested at a post office.

So I looked at her, picked up our envelope of stuff and said, "Ya know what? FUCK YOU. Every single time I come into this postal facility it is nothing but a gigantic pain in the ass, and it's always you. Is it too much to ask for you to do your fucking job? APPARENTLY.!" and turned to walk out. The ginger kid waiting on the only other customer was laughing in that "don't wanna get caught laughing at this bitch getting told off" laugh. 

We leave. I get in the car and fire up the Google machine to look up where else you can get passport applications processed on a Saturday. Apparently, about every single post office in Trumbull County does them, but only Canfield, Poland and North Lima will do them in Mahoning County. Since we were already in Trumbull County, I see that Warren's Main Post Office can do them. Allie says, "You better call first."  So I do. And a friendly voice answers the call. I ask Melissa if they can accept two passport applications today. She says, "Sure. We do walk-up on Saturdays until 12:30 p.m. so come on over."  I said, "Wow. Can you teach those idiots in Niles how to do that?" She gave me that uncomfortable laugh of acknowledgement when you want to say something, but you can't. Oh, it's now 11:17 a.m.


As we trek down 169 Allie's kinda gut-laughing about me calling Jamie (with an E, why that matters is coming soon) a fucking idiot as I left after giving her "Ya know what? Fuck You."

We compose ourselves and walk in the big-ass main post office on High Street. It's now 11:30 a.m., We meet Jami (without an E. See, told you it mattered.) Jami is smiling. Jami is happy. Jami is impressed we have all our documentation in order, our applications filled out but NOT signed, and that we have the proper photos required. Jami goes over the paperwork, explains the process, checks our IDs, fills out the stuff she has to fill out, has us sign the paperwork, puts it all together and has it ready to go. We thank Jami and pay the lady and walk out of the big-ass main post office in Warren and get in the car. It's now 11:45 a.m. Half-hour each my ass. 

We decided since we adulted enough today, and accomplished the only real mission we have today, we were going to get lunch. We decided to hit up The Lime Tree, because we haven't eaten there yet. And it was delicious.


So, your takeways from today's lesson:  Do your job, and if you're hungry and in Warren, we recommend The Lime Tree. I say get the Reuben (or Gyro ... or anything really, from The Lime Tree. Travis & Kristen are great people, their food is outstanding and they have great beers on tap and kick-ass unique cocktails. And a monthly brunch.  Also, when you piss me off, I'm a gigantic asshole.

But you probably already knew that.

2017-04-11

I've figured out President Trump's agenda

I think I finally figured out President Trump's agenda. 

For reals.

Gimme a minute to explain:

Trump really does want America to be/remain/regain being great. Not just in one thing. In EVERYTHING we used to be great at. Manufacturing, education, science, space exploration, environmental protections, social programs, being good neighbors, helping the poor, policing the world and just being that beacon of hope for those wanting a better life, in America.

See, we used to be great. Long ago, before we started this class/color/sexuality/religious/gender/political war that we're all wrapped up in. 

President Trump sees these dividing points as what's making us NOT be great. 

Not the Mexicans. Not the Muslims. Not the gays. Not the women. The warfare among the people of America. Over petty things. 

So he decides to do some nation rebuilding by reshaping America. 

  • He runs the perhaps the worst campaign ever seen in American politics for content while attacking the leaders of his own party, the leaders of the opposition, asking the Russians to get involved and filling his campaign staff with idiots and political neophytes to run a campaign that nobody  saw him winning.
  • And he does this while running against a candidate that's so hated by a near majority of voters damn near anyone else remotely qualified who doesn't do everything in the previous paragraph would beat her in a Mondale-like landslide.
  • He loses the popular vote while winning the Electoral collage making everyone who gets democracy but not representative republics mad.
  • He claims 3 million illegal votes were cast, casting doubt on the legitimacy of the election, but refuses to allow recounts, investigations or proof. Making more people mad.
  • He's turned his campaign promises into shit faster than any candidate in history. Making his supporters mad.
  • He's threatening war with China, Russia, Iran and North Korea, to the point even some of the most fanatical war hawks are like "Um, wait. No. Just wait."
  • He fills his cabinet with the least qualified candidates in the history of politics based on how much money they have or gave to his campaign, and by how much money they can route to his pockets. Which makes more people mad.
  • His approval rating, while three times that of Congress, is deplorable. And falling. 
  • He does EVERYTHING he spent four years criticizing the most popular president in recent history did, but even more so. "I won't golf." "I won't vacation." "I won't waste money." and that's all he does. Warns him "Don't bomb Syria without Congressional approval" ... then goes ahead and does it. 

And there's more. Yugely more. But this is already long. So let's wrap-it-up!

America, throughout its history, has always been able to unite to face the common enemy. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, right?

He's PURPOSEFULLY trying to become the single most hated American politician, president and person. 

To unite the country. To force us to put aside our differences in race, gender, religion, class, sexual orientation, creed, background, nationality, sports teams, musical tastes to unite as Americans and take on a common enemy:  Donald J. Trump.

Eyes open now? You're welcome. 

2017-02-20

Help us help kids fight cancer!

Hello Friends,

Eric here. It's February and two dozen of us are 25 days away from shaving our heads and faces to help the St. Baldrick's Foundation help kids fight cancer. I've been growing it out since November 1st, and man, I'm ready to be bald again! This is my sixth year shaving my head, sixth year volunteering and third year as event organizer for our local event, and while it's a lot of work, it's very rewarding work. Here's why:

Last year we met Kolby, from Youngstown. He was diagnosed in 2015 at age three and started treatments for Early B Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He was in treatment but still came out to our 2016 event and watched his brother shave his head, and he had fun. He was diagnosed as cancer free in 2015, but is on a three-year maintenance plan. He will be five 10 days after our 2017 event and his future looks bright. ALL is the most common cancer in boys ages 2-5. It also has the best cure rate of over 95%, and we hope he comes out again this year!

Kolby is one of the 300,000 kids world-wide that are diagnosed with cancer. Kolby is why we do this. Last year, with your help, the St. Baldrick's Foundation had 1,240 head-shaving events that raised raised more than $38 million for research grants. Locally, we had our best year ever, raising $19,451.

We are asking for your help again. Just click the link below and donate what you can. Every dollar helps, so please don't feel your donation is too small. And if you can't donate this year, could you share the link on your social media sites? We have 24 people signed up to shave their heads on March 11 including nine women, and Marek, who's seven and shaving his head for the third time as a participant and for the fourth time overall. With what we raised last year, and this year, we've given more than $60,000 St. Baldrick's Foundation since we started in 2012. The donation page link is below and your support is appreciated. Here's the link to our 2017 St. Baldrick's Head Shaving. Come join us for a fun run, bands, beer, bald heads and a basket raffle on Saturday, March 11th. Thanks!  Join us by signing up to shave your head or donate to the event, a team or participant here: https://www.stbaldricks.org/events/austintown2017
The photo is Kolby on the left, and his brother Robby on the right from last year's event. Robby raised more than $600 and shaved his head with us.
You can follow Kolby's story in his Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/398734086918077/

2017-02-14

My annual "Shaking You Down" St. Baldrick's Post!

Hello Friends,
It's the middle of February and Valentine's Day and I am 25 days away from once again shaving my head and face to help the St. Baldrick's Foundation help kids fight cancer. I've been growing it out since November 1st, and man, I'm ready to be bald again! This is my sixth year shaving my head, sixth year volunteering and third year as event organizer for our local event, and while it's a lot of work, it's very rewarding work. Here's why:
Last year we met Kolby. He was diagnosed in 2015 at age three and started treatments for Early B Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He was in treatment but still came out to our 2016 event and watched his brother shave his head, and he had fun. He was diagnosed as cancer free in 2016, but is on a three-year maintenance plan. He will be five 10 days after our 2017 event and his future looks bright. ALL is the most common cancer in boys ages 2-5. It also has the best cure rate of over 95%, and we hope he comes out again this year!
Kolby is one of the 300,000 kids world-wide that are diagnosed with cancer. Kolby is why we do this. Last year, with your help, the St. Baldrick's Foundation had 1,240 head-shaving events that raised raised more than $38 million for research grants. I'm asking for your help again. Just click the link below and donate what you can. Every dollar helps, so please don't feel your donation is too small. And if you can't donate this year, could you share the link on your social media sites? We have 24 people signed up to shave their heads on March 11 including nine women, and Marek, who's seven and shaving his head for the third time as a participant and for the fourth time overall. Last year we raised $19,451 locally, bringing our five-year-total to nearly $60,000 we've donated to the St. Baldrick's Foundation. My link is below and your support is appreciated.
https://www.stbaldricks.org/participants/ericbroz2017

Inline image 1
This is Kolby on the left; his brother Robby on the right after raising more than $600 and shaving his head!

2017-01-24

This train is about to get a whole lot less populated

I think I have reached the point where I am done with this administration.

And, sadly, it only took two days.

My tipping point?

Alternative facts.

Or, to those of us with logical, rational brains …

The series of flat-out lies and falsehoods being presented from the podium of the White House Press Room because President Ego and his talking heads got mad about real news media all over the world reporting on the numbers of people (not) attending his inauguration Friday in DC (which Twitterer-In-Chief described as an 'honer') as the compared to number of people who actually attended President Obama's two inaugurations and/or the number of men, women and children actually attending Saturday's marches in DC and all over the world.

And I bet the large number of signs with all the words spelled right had to piss him off, too.

Alternative facts are lies. There's nothing else to be said. 

The opening weekend response from the President, from his campaign speech after he was sworn in to banning the Department of the Interior and the EPA, his tweets, his inability to see what's happening and respond appropriately has been outlandishly petty, not presidential, unprecedented and proof that he is unfit to lead this ENTIRE nation, which is still comprised of more people who didn't vote for him than who did. I’m not saying he’s not the president, he won the Electoral College. What I’m saying is he needs to realize that he’s the President of the United States, not just the people who voted for him.

Here's what I’m talking about: 

As an American, I, and 73,649,166 others who didn't vote for him, expect him to realize the campaign is over and reach out to everyone, as previous presidents have. To try to be the President of the United States of America. Not just the 62,979,879 members of Trump Nation who did vote for him. And stop saying the popular vote was because of illegal aliens voting, or voter fraud, or anything like that unless you’re willing to have every vote inspected, every voter vetted and the results of the election (which have been verified) recounted, in every state. There’s no way that 10,669,288 illegals voted (that’s the number of people who voted for her or anyone else running for President.) So on election fraud, it’s time to put up or shut up.


But you won’t. Because you can’t. Your ego won’t let you. You can’t handle being wrong, being embarrassed or shown up. Everything has to be your way. You’re acting like a seven-year-old, not a 70-year-old. It’s like you want to set up a Trump Nation and install yourself as your king and have everyone bow down to you. But that’s not how America works. You’re elected, not appointed. You’re gifted a four-year term to convince us to give you another four-year term. That means all of us. Remember that. You’re in charge of all of the country, not just the minority who elected you, please start acting like it.

As for that minority voted Trump, some of you’d probably hail that king. And that’s sadly amusing to me. 

Wait. What amusing about that?

Some of you (maybe most, I hate to generalize) are already groveling beneath his feet, as you have since the beginning, waiting for him to save your job (which he can't because Mexicans aren't taking them, robots and the Indians and Chinese are), build that wall & make Mexico pay for it (which we won't, and they won't), lock her up (which isn't happening) and all the other things he told you he would do, as you sat there like little baby birds, mouths agape, as he vomited this garbage in your face and called it Making America Great Again.

You just haven't realized it's garbage he’s feeding you. 

That Trump Freedom Murica Meal you've been devouring like a second grader with a whole cake is an alleged billionaire pissing all over all of you and him telling you you’re just standing in the rain. He got what he wanted. Elected. But he can't deal with not everyone rolling over and accepting that 73,649,167 people DIDN’T vote for him and aren’t happy about the path he’s taking. And they’re letting him know.

This first weekend in office is just the tip of the iceberg.

The 73.6 million of us are already and rapidly growing tired your and his inability to see actual facts, think rationally and act logically for the entire nation. We are already tired of the lies, the outright propaganda, misinformation and bullshit. Marching against Obama is what you said? Cheese-Cracka please. This wasn’t a march for or against one thing, this was a march about EVERYTHING.

We have heard for eight years that death panels were coming with Obamacare.  That didn't happen under President Obama, but it’s going to happen under President Trump when the Affordable Care Act is repealed. For the slow readers in the crowd, congrats for getting this far. I hope you realize that the Affordable Care Act is, in fact, Obamacare. And many of you who voted for President Trump will be losing your health insurance, all because you hate the Obama part of Obamacare so much you never realized it’s exactly what you have. I hope you’re not part of the 43,000 that Harvard expects to die in the first year.  Others will see their premiums rise. To keep the insurance companies raking in billions of dollars a year while letting people go without medicine, and health care. That’s why they were marching.

He never took your guns, but now Law And Order Trump wants to federalize law enforcement across the nation with the "Kill a cop, face the death penalty" tactic. While that sounds good in his bumper-sticker staccato speech patterns, it happens to violates the 10th Amendment of the Constitution, a document he’s probably never read but swore to uphold. That’s why they were marching.


He demanded Obama's birth certificate, but won't produce the tax forms he's promised over, and over and over to do, from the time before he won the nomination to saying before he was sworn in. Still, no taxes. Because he's a fraud.

And I’ve saved the best of the lies for the end ... How many times and ways were we told the Kenyan Muslim Socialist Communist Fascist Fake President Barack Hussein Hitler Obama was going to enact Sharia Law? I’ve lost count.

But Sharia law is coming to America, just the Christian version of it. And your leader is the one pushing it, not the Obamas. If Congress has its way, we’re going to have a nation where less than 60% identify as Christian, and even fewer has hardcore Christian (25% Evangelical) but with the Bible the law of the land. 

That's no different than making the Koran the law of the land. 

There’s a pretty big statement from the Founding Fathers (who were not all Christian and this is not and never has been a "Christian nation") who realized that zealots of any religion will destroy this nation. That’s why there the whole Religious liberty means you can worship whom you want, or idolize nothing at all. Religious liberty does not mean you must worship my god. That's why the Pilgrims left England in the 1600's. To get away from religious intolerance. That's why they wrote the Establishment Clause and Free Exercise Clause of First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. 

What's that? Here: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..."

Now, 500 years later, here we are. Trying to make the the God of the few rule the many, regardless of the will of the people. That’s why they were marching. And dozens of other reasons.


President Trump isn't helping with his petty fits, and his desire to rip away everything that happened over the last eight years. He didn't win a majority of the vote and should start to recognize it.  His speech Friday should have said "I see you. I hear you. I want to be your president too. Let's work together to make America great again." I, and many others, would have listened to that. We don't want to see Trump fail, because that means America fails, but it's going to happen.

Before Friday, Trump talked about taking the weekend off, then gave a campaign speech after being sworn in, then on Saturday, had a fake event at the CIA with a hand-picked crowd of NOT CIA people. Then, he and his propaganda machine went 11-year-old girl on us all weekend with "No way, Holly. I totally had more people at my birthday party than you or Stacey did.” That's not presidential behavior.

And then we learned about “alternative facts.”  A concept so stupid only the brainwashed who’ve been watching Faux Noise and listing to Rush would believe. And that’s where my wanting this to work ends.

Your stupidity and blind ignorance to continue to follow this orange airbag has me in fear for the long-term health of this nation, our children, your grandchildren; the current health and basic rights of our wives, sisters, mothers, and grandmothers, because their rights will be stolen away, day by day, minute by minute, along with our health care, our clean air, our clean water and clean land, for the next four years, or however long it takes the rest of the Republican party to wake up and realize the monster they've created is eating their future, too, and impeach a man who never should have gotten this far in the first place.

I’m a 48-year-old white male with two degrees and an IT career. I have skills across many fields that will keep me employed until doomsday, so I’m not worried about me. I’m worried about my friends that aren’t white, that aren’t males, that are gay, lesbian, transgender, intersex. Those that don’t have degrees, those that have children, those who stand to lose basic rights, protections and access to health care. That’s who I support. Not a billionaire wanna-be king and anyone who can’t see where this is going. Deregulate the EPA? Sure. We’ll wind up with more jobs, and look like Beijing. Pollution so thick you can’t go outside in it. Put an idiot who’s never had a job in charge of the Department of Education who’s never attended a public school or applied for federal student aid? Perfect. Putting Rick Perry and Ben Carson in your cabinet? What’s next? Bristol Palin running Planned Parenthood?


Sorry, if you’re still 100% behind Trump, we’re done. If you’re not questioning his responses, his actions or his inability to realize he’s completely unqualified for the role he has, we’re done. If you’ve spent all weekend not seeing what’s happening? We’re done. Because if you're not getting on the reasonable, fact-based train, then I guess we're not going to end up in the same place. Enjoy the ride to your distopian future with King Trump. I'm out.

2017-01-18

The New Testament: King Trump Edition 10 Commandments, updated for 2017 America.

The New Testament: King Trump Edition 10 Commandments, updated for 2017 America.

  1. The US Dollar is the Lord your God: You shall not honor foreign currencies before me. Unless you're bribing me. And they're not traceable. I prefer Russian bonds. They are the best.
  2. You shall not take the name of Trump your God in vain. I'll sue the pants off you. I have great lawyers. Believe me, they're great.
  3. Remember to keep holy the weekend. Which is why I'm taking this, and probably every other, weekend off. Don't want to drunkingly sign executive orders calling for the immediate incarceration of those crooked Clintons and my other political enemies this weekend while I'm celebrating. With the Clintons. We're friends. She's a nice lady. I'm the new president. I shouldn't have to work weekends. It's not like I'm taking any salary for this. I might just work four ten-hour days and call it a week. A 40-hour work week for everyone makes America great again.
  4. Honor your father and your mother. Especially if they give you small loans, like when I got a million from my father in the 70's. Didn't everyone get that?
  5. You shall not kill. But I can shoot somebody on 5th Avenue and still not lose any votes. Unless you're standing your ground. 
  6. You shall not commit adultery. That's a Presidential exclusive in the Trump administration. And before I was president. Because it's part of the Trump Family Values.
  7. You shall not steal. That's reserved for the Mexicans. Rape too.
  8. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. But you better report his Muslim ass if he's plotting against America. Because they all are. Or if he's a raping Mexican, here illegally. I'll deport his ass starting Day 1. I mean Day 3. Weekend off. 
  9. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife. Again, that's Droit du seigneur. You'll wind up on the other side of the wall.
  10. You shall not covet your neighbor's goods. Only covet things with the Trump label. They're the best. 

2016-12-21

I wrote a letter using 182 Richard Marx song titles.

Apparently Richard Marx is kind of a bad-ass and helped restrain a dude who lost his shit on a Korean Air Flight last weekend. A friend of mine was reading about it and was shocked to learn that he was married to Daisy Fuentes, and that she's 50 and beautiful, and that Richard Marx has a HUGE odd-shaped head. She asked me the following questions:

1. What is wrong with Richard Marx's head? It looks misshapen. 
2. When did he marry Daisy Fuentes
3. How is it possible that Daisy Fuentes is 50??
4. Why would he marry her?

Now she's well-versed in the Googles, so she could easily look those answers up. As could I. But I went one step beyond, as Madness once said. I googled all the original songs and some covers that Richard Marx has released, excluding the Christmas albums, and have come up with perhaps the greatest set of answers of all time as a letter from Richard Marx, explaining everything.

Everything in bold is a Richard Marx song title, or cover, that he has released. There are 182 of them. Enjoy!

Good Evening, Angelia,

What’s The Story about my head? We’ll Talk about That Later. I Can’t Help It. It’s really More Than A Mystery. I guess it’s just hard to control The Power Inside of Me. Or it’s Wild Horses. Or just a bad photo angle. Humidity. Or the fact that my hair was messed up from fighting with a Korean on a plane. You choose.

What’s Wrong With That? Almost Everything. I have a weird-shaped head. Mostly just Scars that Shine from my life on Streets of Pain I Forget To Remember.

As for Daisy Fuentes and I being an item? My Confession: We met years ago, and briefly dated, while I was at the height of my musical success. At The Beginning, she said it felt like a Ride With The Idol, but Everything Good eventually ends. She left me. Everybody saw it coming but me. No Thanks To You. Oh, wait, That Was Lulu. Snark redacted.

Suddenly, one day she looked at me, sadly, and said, “You’re a Superstar. When You’re Gone, I have Suspicion. You Keep Coming Back and I Take You Back but You Never Take Me Dancing. I know it’s Too Late To Say Goodbye, that it’s Too Early To Be Over, but I’ve Had Enough. I am So Into You, You’re A God, but I’m afraid I can’t be What You Want. Be Everything You Want.

“Whatever We Started, I feel like the Hazard of your Wild Life interrupts the Power of You and Me. I have a Heart Of My Own. I can’t play this Fool’s Game and be just another Flame In Your Fire. I’ll Talk To You Later. Decide what We Are and Surrender To Me. Be All Over Me not just a Part of Me. This is how I feel From The Inside. Go Inside and Think It Over. Then pack your stuff and Just Go.

It felt Like The World Was Ending. I was crushed On The Inside. I let out a Silent Scream. I had to Getaway from all of this. I got Colder. I’m just One Man. I knew right there I was afraid to say how I really felt. She brought out The Best Of Me. I felt her Slipping Away and I Should’ve Know Better to think I was In This All Alone. Turns out I was afraid to show her my Lonely Heart. It was Love Unemotional. I was afraid of Dependence. Tears Keep Coming Down, drowning out The Flame Of Love. I was Falling.

While we were apart, I was at the Edge of a Broken Heart. Literally alone on The Edge of Forever being alone, with these self-imposed Chains Around My Heart. It’s Eternity to spend Every Day Of Your Life with your Hands In Your Pocket while Playing With Fire, hanging out with the Children of the Night while you Wait For The Sunrise. There are Breathless days where I Can’t Stop Crying. I Can’t Help It. Life Don’t Mean Nothing when you’re Living In The Real World without Someone Special. Heaven Only Knows how I had my Heart On The Line.

Then I saw her in Miami, 2017. It was October, right about the time When November Falls. There, I came To My Senses.

At The Beginning, I was Too Shy To Say anything. I felt a Touch of Heaven when I saw her At The Station. I felt her Eyes on Me. She took one look at me with those Baby Blues and, you know me, I Can’t Lie To My Heart. For Better or Worse, I was Over My Head and knew there was only One Thing Left: I had to Take This Heart, put on my Boy Next Door attitude, Take It To The Limit and show her The Other Side of me. I didn’t want Ordinary Love. I was Ready To Fly into the Real World and although I said (It Looks Like) I’ll Never Fall In Love Again, I decided to Have A Little Faith and try to start Better Life.

I asked her to Have Mercy and Save Me. Despite what other women had Done To Me, she was Everything I Want. I was Falling and had Nothing To Hide so I told her Straight From My Heart:

“I am Waiting On Your Love and hope The Image of me as a Big Boy Now will allow you to Turn Off The Night and Bring It On Home. I’m Calling You just One More Time to give us One More Try because you were the Best I Ever Had and You’ll Never Be Alone if you Come Back To Me. I felt you Wouldn’t Let Me Love You, oddly enough, When You Loved Me. The Last Thing I Wanted was to not be Always On Your Mind. Let’s Say Goodbye To Hollywood. I’ll come To Where You Are. Heaven’s Waiting. I’m Not Running. I’m Still Here. I Will Be Right Here Waiting, Until You Come Back To Me. But, If You Don’t Want My Love, I’ll leave Your World. Again.”

Suddenly, there was Sunshine. She said, “Come Running, we have the Whole World To Save.” It was a Miracle. We spent Days In Avalon, Dancing. The music sounded like an Angel’s Lullaby. Alleluia. There was a joyous Echo that was Like Heaven. And Remember Manhattan? That was Another Heaven. She said Hold On To The Nights, and she wasn't lying. We were finally Lovin Emotional. I am Satisfied with my Rhythm of Life. We’re talking Soul Action. I am Loved. I am High on life. I Get No Sleep.

I can’t explain The Way She Loves Me. It’s like Thunder and Lightning. She’s the blood that flows Through My Veins. I Should’ve Known Better. She’s Beautiful.  And I Love Her. Now and Forever.

As for you, Little Miss Heartbreak, If You Were My Girl you could'vd had me Anyway You Want Me. Why am I telling you this now? The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face, This I Promise You, I melted. Sometimes I just Can’t Help Falling In Love at first sight.

But, now that I’m with Daisy, again, none of this will happen. And, short of her leaving this mortal plain, there’s Nothin You Can Do About It. I’m glad to get this off my chest, so There’s Nothing Left Behind Us and there’s Nothing Left To Say. Until I Find You Again, I Give You Back your time. I have removed the thing in my life that Only Reminds Me Of You, your journalism book “What’s The Story.” I hope you take from The Letter that in my life, Everything Good. I hope my dreams don’t Haunt Me Tonight. I give you Your Goodbye. I hope it’s a Beautiful Goodbye. I must go. I hear Moscow Calling.

All the best,
-Richard


2016-12-01

So #DumpKellogg is just the tip of the iceburg?

So the Trumpsters are all protesting and boycotting Kellogg for pulling its advertising from an Alt-Right website? That's cool. This is America. As long as they're not beating people up for saying "They're GREAT!" they can have their cute little protest. America is comprised of around 330 million people, give or take a few, and the 45 million that allegedly read BreitBullShit.com on a daily basis represent about 14% of the population. If we take that 45 million and break it down by gender, readership (according to Alexa) is about 60/40 female to male, so about eight million shoppers (assuming that 60% of the 14 million people follow traditional white rules and the wife stays home with the kids and does all the shopping while dad goes off to work, the way god intended) who just got pissed off. And are boycotting. Because a company decided to stop advertising on a website that went from conservative to alt-right (a.k.a. white supremacy). 

All that aside, for a group of people who complain about libtards and liberal logic, the conservatives sure love to go out of their way to whine & complain about being mistreated. How does not seeing an ad for SugarSmaks impede your daily life? No, please. Someone let me know. I REALLY NEED TO FIND PEOPLE WHO LIKE WEB ADS, ya know, for research. So hit me up if you're actually missing the wholesome goodness of a Corn Pops ad while reading your daily racist news stories. 

But like I said, that's cool, they have the right to shop where they want. 

So, alt-righters and their supporters ... Say goodbye to Kellogg's Frosted Flakes, Kellogg's Nutri-Grain, Smart Start (which goes against what you believe because, ya know, it's based on science), Crunchmania, and the gay-sounding Froot Loops, which you'd probably never eat, because you don't want to catch the gay.

And let go of your Eggo, Low Fat Granola, Fruit Flavored Snacks, Apple Jacks, Cinnabon, Kellogg’s To Go, Crispix, Special K and Frosted & Mini-Wheats. But it's not all doom and gloom here, I do have good news:  

You will be able to eat in silence without the fun of Snap, Crackle & Pop in your Rice Krispies, but you may have trouble pooping without the fiber in Mueslix, Cracklin’ Oat Bran, All-Bran, and Kellogg’s Corn Flakes. And if that makes you mad, I'd tell you to eat something sweet, but you just swore off Corn Pops, Smorz, Honey Smacks and you can no longer Krave your Pop-Tarts. Even those tasty Cinnamon Brown Sugar ones I'm eating right now.

And you say you're just starting? #DumpKellogg is the tip of the iceburg? You want the corporations you support to more reflect you and your beliefs or you're not going to support them? 

Bad news, snowflake. That ain't gonna happen. Even in Trump's America.

Corporations have been opening their doors, hiring offices and payrolls to become more inclusive. More diverse. Less white. Soon there will only be a few corporations left for you to support, and you may have to go back to the basics and grow your own food, build your own cars, make your own clothes. And computers. And cell phones, because ... 

Microsoft doesn't advertise on alt-right sites because they're inclusive of all Americans. Microsoft LOVES the gays. Same with Apple. Hell, their CEO, Tim Cook IS one of the gays! So you get no PCs running Windows, no Macs, no iPhones, iPad, iPods or AppleWatchs. 

And don't plan on telling me what else you're boycotting on Facebook, Twitter, any of the massive reach of Google (like Google+ (yes, it still exists), blogging about it here, or ranting on YouTube). They all love the gays and diverse workforces, too. And don't advertise on alt-right sites. Maybe there's an alt-right Friend Finder out there you can use. (I just googled white power dating sites, and yes, there are several. No, I won't list them. Gopher them on your own custom-built computer hopefully running the white power Linux kernel. Yes, that exists, too. No, I won't link to it.)

More good news: You'll be in much better shape, because Ford hires the gays. And the blacks. And other minorities. So does GM. I know a couple!  And Dodge. And Toyota, Honda, Subaru.  And none of them advertise on alt-right sites. I'd tell you get on your bike, but there are a bunch of African-Americans that build (and ride) motorcycles. Same with Schwinn. And none of them advertise on alt-right websites. And that's good, for you, because Aetna, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Cardinal Health, Care Resource, CIGNA, CVS, Group Health Cooperative, Healthline, Jazz Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson, Kimberly-Clark Corp, Mass Life, McKesson, Pfizer, Procter & Gamble, St. Jude Medical, Uptown Physicians Group and United Therapeutics Corp all love the gays, so you'll likely be out of health insurance after Obamacare and Medicare are gone, and won't be able to buy bandages or wound-care from the places listed above. Don't know what some of them do? That's okay. Pfizer makes drugs, Procter & Gamble makes damn near EVERYTHING including Pampers & Luvs, so get used to cloth diapers.

So what else is happening on the boycott front?  Oh, yeah, you're boycotting Target over their bathroom policies ... while shopping WalMart because they have the Duck Dynasty stuff. Walmart also gives same-sex domestic partners benefits. #BOOM Triggered again.

But my favorite "SHOW THEM WE MATTER" protest is your on-going war on Starbucks over their lack of Christmas-themed cups. I personally don't shop there unless it's my only coffee option because I think their coffee kinda sucks. It's better than MacRonalds (who loves minorities and gays), or truck-stop coffee, but still nowhere near the top of the list. You've been at war with them for what ... three years now? Oceania was at war with Eastasia: Oceania had always been at war with Eastasia.

I do like the the new guerrilla twist in this war that's been happening here in 2016. That's some next-level protest shit right there. And I'm a military scholar. I love a good battle plan. Let's look at this & lemme get this straight:

You're protesting their support of Hillary in the election by going to their stores, kiosks and drive-thru locations, ordering their over-priced coffee, handing over your hard-earned money or Discover card (cause you can't use a Visa, Mastercard or American Express card, because they love the gays) from a job the (lazy) Mexicans haven't stolen yet, to make them write Trump when they ask for your name. That's genius-level boycotting right there, I tell ya! "We hate you. You're anti-Christian. Take my $5 and write Trump on my cup. That'll learn ya"). 

And then, if they don't, you get TRIGGERED and start yelling about the election. 

So who's left for your cracker-ass bigoted selves to shop at? Not much. I mean, if you're gonna go in, GO ALL IN and stop shopping everywhere that doesn't meet your particular political or religious beliefs. I'll even help you out:

Here are the most anti-gay corporations in America.

Get used to sustaining yourself on their wares, but pay with cash, because Visa and Mastercard and American Express love the gays. They signed with this list of 379 companies to support marriage equality in the US in 2015.
  • You can get your food (and pet food) from Chik-Fil-A, Cracker Barrel & Purina. 
  • You can get your gas at Exxon-Mobil. 
  • You can get your clothes from Salvation Army, but not Levis. They're on that list above. 

And have fun with all those boycotts. But try to find a good breakfast before you start ... but stay away from Cheerios, Chex, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Fiber ONe, Kix, Lucky Charms, Count Chocoula and his ghouls, Tiny Toas, Trix, Total, Wheaties. General Mills is on the list, too!

Now gimme those Hamilton tickets.

Cops threaten to play Nickleback to OVI offenders. I write a parody of Nickleback based on it.

So the fine Canadian police officers in Prince Edward Island are threatening to force people caught driving drunk to listen to Nickelback. No, for reals!

And between you and me, that would never fly in America. It's probably at best against the Geneva Convention. I mean, let's be serious: One Nickelback song sounds just like every other Nickelback song. And that shit is torture. And probably unconstitutional. At worst, it's basically the same song 97 times in a row (current catalog at the time of this blog post).

So me being me, I decided to spice things up and have a guy write a Nickelback song parody about getting pulled over for having too much to drink and driving, which is never smart. And no, for the record, I was not asked to blow into a plastic straw.

So I give you ... "Plastic Straw" sung to the tune of "Photograph" ... or 96 other similar-sounding Nickelback songs:


Plastic Straw

He said "Blow in this plastic straw. 
You were part of that goddamned bar crawl.
You should see your eyes are so red
You're lucky you could have wound up dead.

"And please don't give me no shit.
You're drunk as fuck and cannot deny it. 
There's no way you can walk a line. 
Probably looking at some weekend time. 

"Please don't puke in my car. 
Gimme the name of that goddamned bar
That over-served you, they are goin' down
I'm sick of working in a college town.

"You can't fight while you're drunk. 
You think you're tough? You're a fucking punk. 
You should've handed the keys to a friend
Your buzz is really gonna quickly end"
Oh, whoa, it just hit me God, I

I am handcuffed in the backseat of a police car
I should have got an Uber ride home from that bar 
It's hard to say
Fucked up today, today
I got no memory of walkin' out of the bar door
Gonna find my photo on the internet for sure 
It's time to face it
Judge will say it
Jail Time ... jail tiiiiime

Remember working at the pizza place?
We'd get so drunk we couldn't feel our face
The cops fucked with us walking home
I hear somebody made it a golf dome

We use to rule that jukebox
Sang along with every song that rocks 
We said someday we'd find out how it feels
To sing to more than just a cutting wheel

Your sister's the first girl I kissed
I never told you cause you'd be hot pissed
She finally came out as a lesbian
I haven't seen her since God knows when
Oh, God, it my fault? I

I am handcuffed in the backseat of a police car
I should have got an Uber ride home from that bar 
It's hard to say
Fucked up today, today
I got no memory of walkin' out of the bar door
Gonna find my photo on the internet for sure 
It's time to face it
Judge will say it
Jail Time ... jail tiiiiime

I don't miss that town
I don't miss their faces
Alcohol erases
Brain cells can't replace it
I don't miss it now
I can believe it
So hard to stay
Real easy to leave it

If I could relive this night 
I know the one thing that I would do right

I'd get an Uber or a taxi ride home from that bar
There's no way I'd get behind the wheel of my car
I have to say it
Time to say it.
Jail Time ... Jail tiiiime.
I got no memory of walkin' out of the bar door
Now my photo’s on the internet, I know for sure 
It's time to face it
Judge will say it
Jail Time ... jail tiiiiime

He said "Blow in this plastic straw. 
You were part of that goddamned bar crawl.
You were part of that damned

2016-11-09

Because This is How America Works

I admit it. I was wrong. Donald Trump has won the presidency. Regardless of how the popular vote goes, presidents are not elected by popular vote. It's the Electoral Collage. Because this is how America works.

On the second Wednesday after the first Tuesday in November of a Leap Year, America historically has a reset. We have a new, or re-elected, president. New, or re-elected House of Representatives, and one-third new or re-elected Senators. Because this is how America works.

It would be easy (especially for me) to rant, rave, throw things, kick puppies, (well, maybe not kick puppies), swear, threaten to move (oh, wait, I just covered that, I can't get into Canada) or the like, But I'm not going to do that. America has spoken. Our half-black progressive-leaning gay-loving president maybe went a bit too far on the pendulum, and now America has decided to swing it back the other direction.  Because this is how America works.

To my friends who supported Donald Trump, congratulations. Your candidate won. Moving forward, I will no longer refer to him by any of the names I called him during the election cycle, as he will be president, and I have respect for the office. Moving forward, I will refer to him as President-Elect until January 20th, then as President Trump. Because this is how America works.

I will not say he is not my president, or that I didn't elect him. I will not leave this country. I will not turn my back on politics, or the political process. I'm an American. He's the President-Elect of the United States of America. He will be my president on January 20, 2017. Because this is how America works.

To my friends who did not support President-Elect Trump, I see your pain. And I feel it too. But don't give up. We can't give up. We have to look at what happened. Take it in. Examine it. Digest it. Fix it. Starting in 2018. And try again in 2020. Because this is how America works.

In the short-term, feel free to blame the DNC. The Clintons. The Russians. Fox News. Your racist uncle. The FBI. CNN. WikiLeaks. People who believed WikiLeaks. Print Media. Gary Johnson. Jill Stein. Whoeverthehell that Mormon guy was. Blame whoever you want. It doesn't matter. Blaming anyone never fixed anything. And this isn't the time for the "Don't Blame Me I Voted For Her" or "Don't Blame Me I Wanted Bernie" mentality. This is the time to mobilize. To organize. To remain or become vigilant in your actions, and speech, and set the stage for 2018's mid-term elections. And 2020 general election. Because this is how America works.

It's time to look to the future. While campaigning, President-Elect Trump made spouted some crazy solutions. And who knows, maybe some of them will work. Maybe a new direction IS needed in Washington, and maybe he can bring it. We need to work on our infrastructure. Our roads, bridges, schools, water delivery systems (remember Flint, Michigan?). Want to "Make America Great Again," President-Elect Trump? Move your industries to America (notice I did not say "Back to America" because they've never been here). Want to employ Americans and recreate the middle class? Buy American-made steel for your buildings. America works when Americans work. Because this is how America works.

And, because this is how America works, President-Elect Trump will have a Republican House of Representatives, a Republican Senate, and a majority of state legislatures led by Republicans. There should literally be NOTHING in the way of stopping the Trump Train. Perhaps, for the first time since President Obama had a Democratic House & Senate his first two years in office, something can get done in Washington. Because this is how America works.

If not, or if the Republicans who have said they can not support a President Trump follow through with their actions, and again, nothing gets done, Americans have a choice in 2018 to reshuffle the House and one-third of the Senate in the mid-term elections (yes, they still happen).  As it happened in 2010, when the Tea Party swept into the  national spotlight and the Republicans gained six Senate seats and 63 House seats. Because this is how America works.

Politics aside, if you woke up on Wednesday, regardless of how you voted, or if you voted, you're alive. You have a voice. You still have your Constitutional rights, and nobody's dragging you off to prison for words you say, or thoughts you have as long as you're not inspiring hate, or hurting others. Because this is how America works.

Americas overwhelmingly came to the polls, and voted what's in their hearts, heads, and beings. And we have the President-Elect we have, and the Congress, and the Senate. Now we have to make them work. For us. Because this is how America works.




2016-11-07

Emotional Lashing Out is The New Black, Apparently


Dear Everyone Saying They Are Moving To Other Countries If The Other Candidate Is Elected:


Stop. 

Just shut your piehole and turn off your cable news channel. You're not going anywhere, and you and I both know it. It's emotional lashing, and it's worthless.

If you're a Conservative, and you're threatening to move to Canada if Hillary Clinton is elected, you're an idiot. 

You're terrified of Hillary's America with open borders, gay rights, restrictive gun laws, abortion on demand and universal health care? So you're moving to Canada? A country that in 2015 elected Justin Trudeau as their Prime Minister (he's like the president of Canada) And since he's not American, and you watch Faux Noise most of the time, which usually doesn't much cover Canada or liberals, let alone Canadian liberals, here's 11 things you need to know about your future Prime Minister:

  • Justin Trudeau wants to add 25,000 Syrian refugees. A year. To the 10,000 per year they're already taking in.
  • Justin Trudeau has promised to legalize marijuana.
  • Justin Trudeau wants to end his country's involvement in aerial attacks against ISIS.
  • Justin Trudeau believes we have to fight climate change.
  • Justin Trudeau believes in boosting government spending.
  • Justin Trudeau raised taxes on the wealthy.
  • Justin Trudeau loves the gays. And the transgenders, too. 
  • Justin Trudeau is against the Keystone XL Oil Pipeline.
  • Justin Trudeau is in favor of normalizing Canada's relationship with Iran.
  • Justin Trudeau restored the role of science in government and national policy.
  • Justin Trudeau has a gender-balanced cabinet of 15 men and 15 women, because, "Hey, it's 2015." (His answer, when asked why he appointed 15 women to prominent cabinet positions.)
So stop claiming you're moving to Canada. It's a Liberal Heaven and your personal hell. Nearly 30% of the country doesn't believe in your god, and you think there's a war on Christmas here? Canadians love Christmas. And Boxing Day. (That's when you box up your leftovers, and clothes you replaced, and toys you outgrew and pass them down to someone less fortunate than you), but they respect the views of others so "Happy Holidays" is a very Canadian thing to say.

Face it, they don't want you, and you wouldn't fit in. Besides, you can't bring your guns, so if you do move, you've just given up your guns voluntarily, to Hillary. So much for that "From My Cold Dead Hands" shit. Your hands, however, would be cold. Canada is cold. And they use the Metric System. And gay marriage isn't even questioned. See, not a place for you.

If you're a Liberal, and think Canada sounds like a heck of a great place based on all of the above if Trump wins, you're an idiot. 

You're terrified of Trump's America but forget that the same people who stonewalled President Obama for six years will not only be there stonewalling Trump for four years, but be joined by a majority of the Democrats in the House and Senate as well. And that's against a Constitutional Lawyer, who has patience, and grace. You thought the 114th Congress did jack shit? Wait until you see the 115th. Think Trump tweets are mad now? Wait until he's stonewalled, repeatedly, and legally can't do shit about it. Because he doesn't understand how government or politics work, let alone work together. His "My way or no way" won't work in Washington. Ever.

Then, after two disastrous years with nothing being done and nothing happening (including that wall), and without Hillary in prison (because, well, that's not how politics works in America, you can't imprison your enemies), and a mid-term election in 2018, the 116th Congress would continue the task. Because while some democrats in Congress liked Bernie, and some liked Hillary, but none of them like Trump.

Politics aside, think about all the culture change you'd have:

  • Their milk comes in plastic bags. In plastic bags. Milk bags are plastic bags that contain milk. They are usually stored in a pitcher or jug with one of the corners cut off to allow for pouring. A typical milk bag contains approximately 1 13 liters and are sold in bigger bags of three for a total of four liters. Or litres, as they spell it.
  • Because they use the British spelling of words like honour, colour and valour, Travelling has two L's. Metre, Centre, Litre. The list goes on.
  • And you'd have to learn French. Not high-school French, real Canadian French.
  • You'd have to learn to eat curds on top of stuff; KD by the week (Kraft Dinner, aka Mac & Cheese, is a Canadian staple), and gravy on your fries.  Gravy.  
  • You'd have to learn about the 13 provinces and three territories that comprise Canada, their people, traditions and ways of life, which are very different. 
  • Toronto is NOT the capital of Canada. 
  • You can't call the native Canadians Eskimos. That's like saying the N word. Inuit is their preferred nomenclature.
  • The $20 in your pocket may be worth about $26 Canadian dollars, but their economy is tanking due to Alberta (that's in Western Canada) oil industry.
  • Speaking of money, their cash is plastic, and some of it see-through. They have queens and kings on them, but they don't have pennies. Everything is rounded to the nickle. They have a dollar coin. Called a Loonie. And a $2 coin. Called The Twoonie. 
  • Zed is the last letter of the alphabet. Not Z. Zed.
  • It takes 18-30 months to become a permanent resident of Canada. During that time you can't change jobs or apply for national medical coverage. Trump, if elected, won't make it 30 months. 
  • Canada's rednecks are SERIOUSLY more backwoods than American rednecks.
  • Bears. Lots of bears.
And besides, so many people claim they're "going to do something if" this candidate is or is not elected, and never does. Rush Limbaugh vowed to move to Costa Rica if Obamacare was implemented. He's still here. Sadly. Remember when Eddie Vedder said he'd leave if W was elected in 2000? Still here. Or Stephen Baldwin when Obama was elected? Never left, but hasn't been seen much lately, either. 

But if you think you're packing up your shit and moving to Canada on Wednesday, bad news:  First, to get to Canada, you need a passport. Oh, you have one? Good. Then you need a reason to go. Vacation works, but not with a U-Haul. And unless you're sitting on stacks of fat cash, buying new shit once you get there isn't as appealing with a 5-15% Value-Added Tax on things. And it snows. A lot. So if you hate the cold, you're out. And, despite what you think, you just can't come at the drop of a hat. You need a job, or to get accepted to university (what they call college) and have to have a work permit or a study permit. 

Just for shits & giggles, I took the Express Entry test to see if I could get into Canada, and having spent summers there thought I'd have a pretty good chance. Nope. I didn't pass the test to emigrate to Canada. And I doubt most of you would, either. Canada's looking for smart people, with skills. But, if you're curious ... Find out if you're eligible to apply ...

Regardless, abandoning your country because of a President? Lame. Presidents serve, at most, eight years. With these two being 70 (DJT) and 69 (HRC), who knows if Grandma President or Cheeto President would survive the stress. Look at President Obama before and after eight years. This is what Trump and Clinton would look like after four.

Oh, and threatening to leave your country based on who's in charge for a short amount of time is cowardly. Stay and fight for your country, or go to France. They like those who surrender. And pack your false patriotism with you. Because you're not leaving, on either side, regardless of who's elected. So stop saying it.

But go vote. No, seriously. We made this mess, we have to live with it for four years. Then we can reboot.