Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Just Like Kidz

Ahhh Christmas at my house. My two dogs first fought over their identical squeaky stuffed toy high heal shoes (too gay?), then - within minutes - had the stuffing pulled out of one of them and shortly thereafter abandoned them both.

But those few moments of joy are priceless.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Sieze the Opportunity

Parents are freaked out about Jamie Spears getting pregnant at 16. What should they do? Should Jamie stay on the show? Will their children find out?

Listen folks, this is the PERFECT time to talk to your kids - I would say 10 and up - about sex, pregnancy, safe sex, and contraception. You know your kids so talk to them in a way they will understand. Don't scare them or shield them - just the facts and answer any questions.

Remember - to talk to your kids about sex, safe sex and contraception is not encouraging them to go out and do it. They will eventually do it anyway. Arming them with common sense could save a life or stop a kid from having a kid.

Friday, December 21, 2007

More Character - Less Politics

I'm hearing a lot that Democrats need to start acting more like Republicans because the Democrats look like wimps. I disagree.

No doubt about it, Republicans are much better at politics. But politics boils down to manipulation, deception, bullying, and twisting of facts. I expect more from the Democratic party. True, it's harder to win elections based on good character but Dems don't need to change to get our vote. We need to change the way we listen to the candidates. We should not be fooled by the dirty campaigns and name calling . And we should definitely not join them.

Note: Not all Republican candidates are manipulative - and not all Democrats are of great character. Listen carefully.

Show Some Respect

I do NOT need to hear frantic 911 calls on the evening news. It is nothing less than tabloid journalism and it is disrespectful to the victims or heros involved.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Jill Jackson Said it Best

Let there be Peace on Earth - and let it begin with me.

Everybody now!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Own Your War

President Bush is accusing the leaders of Iran of trying to start World War III. Doesn't he realize that HE is the one who has already possibly set that war in motion?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

The Middle Man - er - Person

Welcome to election year – things are sure to be interesting this time around. I think most Americans are tired of having extremists in the White House and would prefer leaders with more “middle of the road” ideas that appeal to both Democrats and Republicans alike. Electing someone like that is really the only way we can accomplish big things – otherwise we end up with both sides bickering and causing road blocks that hinder their productivity.

I have not made a firm decision on who I would most like to see win this race yet but I see at least one person who would fit the above profile and that is Ron Paul. I have listened to him speak on several occasions and he has a good head on his shoulders. But he is not a front-runner because Republicans – at least those that are taking polls - still want to keep their ultra-conservative policies in place. It’s a shame.

On the Democratic side I think we have a lot of great choices. I wouldn’t consider most of the candidates as hard-lefters although I’m sure most Republicans would disagree. I think Hillary Clinton is a good choice as a middle of the road type candidate and I’m glad she is doing well in the polls. She also comes with prior experience in the White House which none of the other candidates can claim. I’ve been very impressed with the way she has been handling attacks from other candidates, but it will be interesting to see how she can handle attacks from Republican candidates. I honestly believe she can do the job and do it well. And I think the time has come where someone other than a white male sits in the Oval Office.

Whoever gets the job, I just pray they can be more “middle” than the Bush administration - but that should be too difficult.

"Normal" is in the mind of the beholder

Monday, December 03, 2007

24 Hour Madness

The Earth runs in cycles, Day and Night, and all life has adapted to live by those cycles. Well almost all life. Humans, in our genius, have created light bulbs and suddenly the night is light. We now live in a 24 hour society. Last week I read an article that says that people that work “graveyard shifts” could be prone to cancer. It doesn’t surprise me.

The lights are always on, machines never stop and the people that run them must work at what I would call “unnatural hours”. We have been doing this for some time now but I would say only in the last 40 years or so has it become so common that it is no longer considered odd. It’s also in those 40 years or so that crime has gotten out of control, more people seem “crazy” and a myriad of new illnesses you never heard of before – like ADD and SAD have surfaced. I think all these things are related to people living outside the natural cycles of the Earth.

The human body needs sleep, lots of it, in order to function properly. We were not designed to sleep during the daylight hours and therefore don’t sleep soundly when we are forced to do so. This creates all sorts of health and mental stability issues. Another factor to consider is that parents are no longer at home to put their kids to bed, or wake them up in the mornings. They are not there to keep their kids from loitering in gangs and provide proper meals. The 24 hour lifestyle is not healthy for society.

There are a few people who actually work better on 3rd shift hours – but I think they are a small minority. I myself work 2nd shift – 4pm to midnight – and that works very will with my life. But I don’t have kids. And 2nd shift is still within a “normal” day. I’m usually in bed by 1:30am and up by 9:30am. But I do have to wear a sleep mask when it gets light in the morning.

I don’t think we need to run 24 hours a day. Sure profits are huge, but it creates more social and health problems than it’s worth. Notice that most CEO’s of these 24 hour businesses do not work 2nd or 3rd shift. If they did they would know the toll it takes on the body’s natural rhythms.

As with most money driven issues, this one will likely not change - but it should. We need to go back to a society where everyone sleeps at night. It would be great if we could just shut off all the lights after midnight. Imagine the environmental impact of that! Plus, it would solve the terrible problem of light pollution – a near future blog topic.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Corporations Should "Give Back" Too

President Bush, all caught up in the Thanksgiving spirit, urged Americans to "give back" to their communities as a sign of thanks.

Mr. President, those of us who live paycheck to paycheck would be very thankful if we could get back some of that gas money you stole from us this year. Imagine if Exxon or Mobile gave back 5% of their enormous profits to the communities they took it from. That would be incredible.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

State and Church

I have two points to make on the separation of Church and State - both of which occured this week:

1. When Churches preach that you are sinning if you vote for a candidate they don’t like (as the Catholic Bishops are once again urging) they should immediately be considered a Corporation, and be taxed accordingly.

2. I think it is perfectly OK for a Governor, acting outside his official office and off Government grounds to urge people to pray for rain. I believe in the power of prayer. However, every effort should be made to include all faiths to pray in the manor of their teaching. Rain is headed for Georgia – coincidence?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

In The Line of Duty

Sadly in South Florida, we have had 3 high profile Police officers killed in the line of duty in the last several months. The outpouring of support for the families, friends, and co-workers has been huge – as it should be. Today while at the gym, I noticed that one of our local TV stations had pre-empted their regular programming to bring live coverage of the latest funeral. I watched for a while as people gave speeches behind the flag draped coffin and I couldn’t help but wonder why this is so different than the troops that are also killed in the line of duty.

Please understand, I mean no disrespect for ANY of these fallen heroes and I support them all. But why would the media focus so much time and energy on one fallen police officer and hardly even mention the soldier that just came back to S. Florida in a coffin? We don’t even see that soldier’s coffin – none of them (nearly 4,000).

Police officers and military personnel are very similar if you think about it. Both paid by taxpayer money to protect our rights and freedoms. Both of them put their lives in danger every day to protect and serve. All of them parents, bothers or sisters, and members of the communities they serve. Why should one get so much attention and the other barley mentioned?

It’s the same reason why celebrity tabloid news is so important today while the war isn’t mentioned at all. The media, which is controlled by a certain few, wants us to focus on our own community so we forget that there is a terrible war going on. And the reasons for that have already been mentioned in previous posts like this one.

At this time I want to say Thank You to both the Police and the Troops who risk their lives every day. My condolenses to the families of those fallen heros and may God bless those that have been seriously injured in the line of duty.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Live and Learn - Never Stop

I learned recently that if you put your clothes in the dryer in a jumbled mess, they will likely come out in a jumbled mess. But if you take just a couple of seconds to unravel them and lay them nicely in the dryer - they come out looking fresh and nearly wrinkle free. Joy!

Throw Away Society

That title above is not a request – but a description. It seems we don’t “fix” anything anymore. If something breaks we just throw it out and buy a new one. Meanwhile, our landfills are heaping with this junk, our resources are being depleted, our water poisoned with old batteries and poisonous parts, and more energy is needless used to re-create what we already have.

I think the problem isn’t just with consumers – in fact I think a lot of the blame rests on those that manufacture these electronics. They are not built to be fixed in the first place. In the name of getting it on the market fast and cheap they integrate all the parts into one unit that can’t really be modified, upgraded, or repaired. It is way more expensive to fix something like that than just to buy a new one. I think “fast and cheap” is a terrible way to run a society. I wonder if we will ever get past this. Once again, it comes down to money – so it will not likely change.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

OutSourced In

I try not to write articles about my workplace because even in the land of free speech, you can be fired rather quickly for something you write in your personal Blog that your bosses don’t like. But there is one issue I’d like to vent about that hopefully won’t get me into too much trouble. I’ll try to be vague.

I’ve worked at the same job for 11 years now – we will call them Company A. Recently we “merged” with another company about the same size as ours – we will call them Company S. Merged is in quotes there because it felt more like a hostel takeover to me. I’ve had a few issues with this merger but I’ve kept mostly quiet about them until now (see above). Let me try to explain my frustration.

Our e-mail addresses at Company A are composed of a combination of 6 letters from our first and last names and sometimes they form nice little words (often even funny). Since several people in my office had my same first name when I started, and my combination of letters formed a nice little nickname – I became known throughout the company as denbec. It’s been that way for all 11 years. Now we merge with Company S and it was decided that the IT department where I work (and only the IT department) will work directly for Corporate, and as such we will assume their e-mail address standard. We were told we were no longer to use the old address and we even needed to change our signature files, business cards etc. Suddenly denbec is dead. Now even people inside our original Company A get messages from me with Company S’s address. It feels like a shotgun marriage where I was forced to take a new name and the old one is gone forever. I wonder how many of my messages are being deleted because people don’t know it was from me.

While I am still mourning the death of denbec, I have another issue with this change. The building I walk into each day says Company A, the security badge I wear says Company A, and most of the people I support work for Company A – yet it appears to all concerned that I work for Company S. It’s like I have been outsourced to my own job while I sit at the same desk. When new employees call do they realize I really work directly with them and not at the new corporate office? Does it matter? Well I think it really does. For example, since the merger we also take support calls for Company S after hours and when they call and realize they are talking to someone who is mostly unfamiliar with their business it can be unsettling. But that’s one of those topics I decided not to comment on before so we will leave it at that.

Since this merger, Company S has “merged” with several other companies and I’ve been assured that eventually we will all assume the new email standard. I would have been happy to wait and make the change with everyone else.

The good news is that denbec is not totally dead. In the years I have worked this job that nickname has become such a part of my life that I use it on my personal accounts as well. You might even notice it happily residing in the URL of this blog. Maybe Company S won’t be able to recognize denbec and I won’t get fired after all.

Ro and Me

I've enjoyed Rosie for many years now so I went to her book signing to check if perhaps I was "star struck" or maybe she wans't really "all that". While my visit with her was necessarily short, I was able to watch her interact with the other people as I waited in line. Let me just say that Rosie is the real deal. My admiration for her only grew deeper watching the warmth, the "yellow" she shares with everyone as though we were all her personal friends. And I honestly believe we are - even the "stranger friends" that haven't actually met her in person but share her very personal life on her Blog. We all love you Rosie!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

We Are Everywhere!

On my recent road trip, I ended up in some much smaller communities that surprisingly had a gay populations, but not as visible as the larger cities. In these smaller towns people live quieter lives and go mostly unnoticed in their day to day lives. Those that oppose us - let's call them Haters - like to believe that we are a tiny, insignificant but undesirable part of their perfect world. This trip made me realize that there are far more homosexual people in this world than they would imagine. Actually, I think there far more than even I imagined. This is proof positive, if you ask me, that we are born and not learned. I think once conservative America is finally forced to understand that FACT, then the issue of rights etc. should be a moot point. Once we understand the FACT that God created us the way we are, then to question that creation is to question God's design. That can't be good for one's salvation.

My Hero - Google Maps

I just returned from a wonderful little road trip to the Deep South which oddly, I drove quite a bit North to get to. Anyway, I took this trip alone and visited several cities I had never been to before. I'm usually not the type to get lost easily but none of these places had nice grid type streets and I actually did lose my way several times. Thank goodness for Google Maps on my Treo phone! It's not like other map sites on the Internet - it's a separate little program that zooms, slides, guides, and points exactly to that place you want to go - with some handy other suggestions in true Google style. And it even shows it in Satellite view if you want which can be very helpful in unfamiliar surroundings. Neat!

I'm not one to give product endorsements but Google Maps on my PDA is the schizzle!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Why do they call them appetizers when clearly they make you less hungry?

Outsourcing War

I wish I had never heard of "BlackWater". It only makes me realize that my post on The Profits of War , which I wrote before I knew what Blackwater is, was probably right on target - and that is so very sad.

Stuck in '04

Time is slipping by – faster every day. The weeks are like days, years like months and as I get older time just seems to slip by ever more swiftly. I know I am not alone with this feeling. I honestly believe there is some phenomena that is actually happening and it is not just a perception that we have. As a child I remember summer vacation seeming like years, now the kids are out of school and right back in before I even realize it.

One theory I had was that our perception of time changes as we experience the passing days. For instance, the first day we were born, our whole life was that one day. The next day of life we lived what would be two lifetimes as seen from the first day. Each day that passes shows us that our days are actually going by faster than we originally thought because our perception of that day is reduced by a percentage of the amount of time we have been alive. But the theory falls sort because the percentage shrinks as we age, so our perception of time should be slowing down. For example, the second day of life it was 1/2, the third day 1/3 etc. As the years go by, that percentage gets really small so it should seem like the days are in fact mostly the same length. But the reverse seems to be true – they seem much shorter every day.

My current theory is that time is directly related to the way the universe is growing at an ever increasing rate. This is probably not even my theory, I likely picked it up in an article or movie, but it does make sense. I think sometime soon we may actually be able to measure this change in our perception of time. I’m not sure what the rate is now, but I can tell you how it feels. In my work I have to type a lot of dates – mostly the current date. I keep finding myself typing in ‘04 instead of ‘07. Apparently, my perception of time is about 3 years behind where I actually am. It will be interesting to see if I stay stuck in ’04 of if I eventually move ahead.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Magic Science

There are some things we use in our daily lives that, while I understand how they work, I just don't understand HOW they work. Maybe a couple of examples will clear that sentence up a bit.

Microwave ovens are one of these great mysteries. I know the concept of the thing, but it still amazes me. You put the food in, push some buttons, a fan runs and the food gets hot -even though the oven doesn't get hot and neither does the plate! But I think the bigger mystery here is that it never works right for bread. Everything else - fine, but bread - it practically changes form. But I digress.

Another thing that seems a mystery to me is even more simple - Sunscreen. The suns rays come all this way - billions of miles and if I put a tiny layer of cream on my skin it blocks the harmful rays that would burn me horribly otherwise. You can't even see it!

Those huge airliners getting off the ground - incredible. But somehow that concept makes sense to me. Sunscreen and Microwaves though, that has to be some form of magic.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

The Average American Has a Blog

You may have noticed in my blog thesis that I call myself “Your Basic Average Dude”. Why you ask? Well let me explain.

I read a lot of periodicals and news stories – especially on the Internet. Most of these stories prove their points by saying things like:

“The average American shops at….”
“The average American drives a……”
“The average American’s daily commute is …….”

Well, you get the picture. I’m just amazed at how often I fit right into the neat little statistic they came up with. And I guess it suits me. I don’t consider myself above average and I certainly don’t want to be below average. So I am “Your Basic Average Dude”.

And just for the record, while it happens with amazing frequency, I’m not always exactly average. ;)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The "N" Word Is't Nice

The big debate in the music business right now is weather Hip Hop artists should be allowed to use the “N” word in their songs. It is a very interesting debate because it makes us seriously examine our American right to free speech.

I have been a huge fan of Hip Hop music for years now. I own and play (sometimes loudly) the uncensored versions of music with profanity and even the “N” word so it is a relevant topic for me. I can agree (or disagree) with both sides of this topic. I understand the concept of using a word that has been used in hate in such a way that it loses its power. We in the gay community have done so with the “F” word (the other one). But I also understand that many people have fought long and hard to rise above the hatred that originally gave the word its power. I believe they are correct in saying we should stop using it all together. There are also those that say it is wrong to subject small children to these hurtful words - and that is also a good point.

I believe censorship is rarely a good idea – especially for artists. But there may be way to somewhat censor without curbing creativity. Here is my suggestion. The entertainment industry is all about awards and award shows. What if we say your song will not be eligible for a public award if it uses “that” word in any version. I think a lot of artists would think twice if they knew their efforts would not be recognized if they choose to use offensive language. Again, it is censorship (which I am against) but it might work at least a little.

I say “in any version” of the song because I have to admit – I am tired of listening to radio edits of songs with half the lyrics either beeped or worse, just cut out. To me – that is more offensive than the words themselves.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Pack Your Bags!

A while back I discovered a way to make my life just a bit easier. I have a bag already packed for those activities I do regularly. I have a bag for the gym – all ready to go including a fresh towel I can replace after my workout. Going to the beach? Got a bag packed for that already too! Off to work I go as I grab my backpack with everything I need to take to the office with me (remember the laptop!). My office backpack has just about anything I would need as far as personal health items like aspirin, Tums, travel size mouth wash and deodorant – just in case.

It’s really a great way to be somewhat organized.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Space Sickness

We should privatize space exploration and use the money our government spends on that for a public health care system.

Personally, I have a huge interest in the mystery of Space and I believe Space travel and exploration is indeed very important for the human race. But it is very difficult to get everyone to agree on what is the best course to follow. The question of whether we should go back to the moon or head directly for Mars is a perfect example. I think private corporations could go in many directions at the same time and competition could spur more innovation and success. The government could still oversee the operations but in a much smaller role.

Meanwhile, health care for all Americans is a clear, obtainable goal and a perfect use of the public’s tax money. This way we would be using the people’s money to benefit all the people and not just the ones who agree on a particular goal. In this case, the government should have a larger role in policing the drug companies and keeping costs under control.

I think people that know me will be surprised by this post because of my interest in everything Space - but it makes good sense to me.

The World Is Best Viewed at 10 - 15 mph

Walking is too slow - you can't see much at a time

Driving is too fast - you miss too much.

Biking is perfect.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Profits of War

When one person spends - another person profits.

What is a cost to me - is a sale to someone else.

Whenever you hear the phrase "the cost of the war" - substitute the word "Cost" with the word "Profit" because what we as taxpayers are spending on equipment, food, bombs, planes, etc. eventually ends up on the balance sheet of some corporation that manufactures equipment, food, bombs, planes etc.

Now think about who we are buying these things from - often in "no-bid" contracts. The message is clear. A speedy end to the war means huge profit losses. They can't end it soon - it would cost them too much.

To me, this is the biggest money laundering operation imaginable. It funnels the money from American tax payers directly into the pockets of the corporations providing these services. And all it takes to keep it going smoothly is a video from Osama every once in a while to keep the fear alive. Is it any wonder he was never caught? It would be brilliant if it wasn't so fraudulent.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Pimpin the Parents

No offense to any of my co-workers to whom this might apply, but I just think it is wrong for parents to sell stuff for their children who are not even with them. This has become a huge racket from Girl Scout cookies to $1 candy bars to magazines.

I don't mind supporting school kids on their fund raising projects. In fact, when I was in school we did many fund raisers to support our band trips. But we did it all ourselves and it was hard work. In the process we learned that making money is often not easy but could be fun. We also learned social skills. Plus, the reward for reaching our goals was so much more realistic. Granted, the parents should be there in most cases to chaperon the kids for their safety - but the kids should be the ones conducting the business.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Farts On the Dance Floor Still Stink

Oh they might not know it was you - but you really only get one chance - use it wisely.

PS It wasn't me.

Immaculate Conceptions Are On The Rise.

I still watch The View even though Rosie isn't on it - and I really like Woopie too so its all good. Today the two conservative co-hosts (Elizabeth and Sherrie - welcome Sherrie!) were flabbergasted at the suggestion that children in Jr. High School should be shown the correct way to use condoms. I don't know what world they live in but in my world that is exactly when kids start talking and thinking about sex. I've said before the time to think about birth control is before the conception. Kids WILL have sex and if you don't talk to them about it or allow schools to teach sex education, they will also get pregnant or catch a life threatening disease. It happened in my school and I guarantee it happens in every school - even the church schools. Conservatives like to believe that abstinence training works best. I'm here to tell you it doesn't work at all. It is a myth. Peer pressure is much stronger than Parent pressure. Do some research on teen pregnancy. I'm sure nearly all those kids were told not to have sex.

Educating children about protected sex does not encourage them to do it. It protects them from it. If you deny this reality then I hope you enjoy your early grandchildren.

Media Mahem

I love Rosie O'Donnell. I'm not the type that gets star struck and I don't know if I consider my admiration for Rosie as such but I bring it up for a very important reason. I was delighted when I heard she would be the moderator on The View and I watched every episode of the show last year. At the same time I discovered Rosie's Blog and read it daily as well. But the media depiction of events that happened on the show - and even things in her blog are totally inaccurate to the events that really happened if you watched the show or read the blog. This became a big eye opener for me. It seems most things you watch on TV or see in the tabloids and even reputable newspapers and magazines are twisted and edited for dramatic effect. Apparently truth doesn't sell as well as drama. Please always keep that in mind whenever you read or view something that you didn't see for yourself.

By the way, the truth about Rosie, in my opinion, is that she is one of the most brilliant, generous and incredibly real celebrities I have ever had the pleasure to enjoy.

Eleanore Roosevelt Once Said.......

I think it would be wonderful to be quoted like that and I guess it's a life goal of mine. But I doubt that I've said or written anything yet that hasn't already been said. And of course most people don't get quoted until they are dead so I can wait a while.

I just wish I could believe him

I watched President Bush’s speech tonight touting the great achievements in Iraq due to his troop surge plan. I want to believe him – I really do. But this man and this administration have outright lied to us so many times already that I’m afraid I no longer believe a single word that comes from that office unless there is outside proof. I’ll wait for that.

How sad we can’t trust the leader of this country.

Choose Your Program

The new TV season starts soon (finally!). I just wish I could watch all my favorite shows. I just don’t understand why the Networks put the same type shows to air on the same night at the same time. Most times my DVR can’t even record the shows I want because it’s already recording something else. Then, sadly, the next night there isn’t anything on that I want to see. The Network Execs sit back and count the viewers that choose their show and sell advertisements based on those numbers. Here is a hint they somehow haven’t thought of: I’ll watch BOTH programs if I can. Why do they make us choose?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Intelligent Design

God created humans with intelligence and an insatiable desire for knowledge. Therefore it should be no surprise that God left clues to our creation to be discovered if we choose to investigate. Using science, we can follow these clues and form theories on the grand nature of the Universe - where we came from and more importantly, where we are going.

Understanding Creation may take some of the mystery out of our existence, but it does not reduce the Majesty of God's design.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Astro Gets His Wings

I believe that life continues after our physical existence on this earth is completed and I hope our pets continue to the same place. My dear friend Astro entered the spirit world yesterday and I will miss him dearly. There is no way to explain in written word how incredible this dog was – so human in his actions and expressions. In his youth he empowered so much energy and jest for life. Often stubborn but with a smartness you don’t expect from an animal. He often sat on my lap at the table on the deck while friends chatted over a beer – listening intently as if he had something to add. Like another person, he slept in the bed with his head on the pillow, by morning stretched out sideways as my partner and I clung to the edge. But life is sadly short for dogs and soon he wasn’t able to get in the bed anymore. As he aged and his health became more dependant on me, I learned valuable lessons on respect for life which is often not easy or convenient. At the tender age of around 110 (16 people years), his life has ended but his incredible spirit lives on in the hearts of those who knew him. And I believe his spirit also lives in a place where I will one day see him again. Rest in peace Astro.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Financing Bigotry

I don't see why I have to pay taxes to these government organizations that are outright sponsoring bigotry and hatred. My hard earned income tax is going to the Federal Government who is denying my basic equal rights as a legal citizen of this country because I am a gay man. And now the Mayor of Fort Lauderdale is creating an environment of hatred where I do not feel safe. I am a home owner in this city where I am paying out of control real estate taxes. That money is being used by our elected officials to wage a campaign against good upstanding citizens who happen to be gay. Why must I pay for this?

But of course if I don't I go to jail. I voluntarily stopped donating to organized religions who choose bigotry over Christianity, but I don't get that choice with taxes. I'm paying for my own oppression on every level. It is sick injustice.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Mother Theresa - A True Saint

Happy are those who question the existence of God - and yet still believe.

Blind faith is exactly that - Blind.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

An Open Letter to the Mayor of Fort Lauderdale

Dear Mayor Naugle,

Every day as I ride my bike through my neighborhood of Progresso on my way to the gym I am approached by drug dealers – sometimes 2 or 3 in one day in the short ½ mile between my house and the gym. Despite this very obvious and serious issue in our City, you have chosen to focus not on crime but rather on homosexual activity. Is this really where your priorities should be focused? Is this where our tax dollars are best spent? From what I have read so far, your claims against rampant public sex is unfounded and not supported by arrest records.

Mr. Mayor, I think you should re-evaluate what your job is and what your constituents expect from our elected officials. You are not running a congregation, you are running a City. You need to be concerned with crime – not sin. The drug dealer issue is only one example of many big issues this city faces. Stop this nonsense and get back to work on the real problems.



Back Door Embargo

China – have they suddenly set out to poison Americans and our animals? I am, once again, very suspicious about this glut of news of tainted products and recalled toys. My instincts tell me it might be something totally different than what we are being led to believe. It feels like some sort of back-door embargo against China. Like the media is being used to portray all things China as bad. Could it have something to do with the undervalued currency in China that is messing with our economy? Something is up – let’s keep our eyes open and our minds clear and not believe everything we are being force fed through the media.

Friday, August 10, 2007

After the Tone You Can.....

Bite me.

I know - harsh. But I can't tell you how sick and tired I am at listening to Audix voicemail. Sometimes that whole long message comes on even after the person has left their own greeting. Come on - it's 2007 and voicemail has been out for how long? I think all we really need is the beep. Oh I know - you can hit the # key and it will go directly to the beep - right? Well sometimes that works, but most times I get a new message saying I need to put in my pass code to get into my voice mail - and it isn't even my mailbox! So I just listen to the whole thing every stinkin time. And now that AT&T owns the whole world (again), I get to listen to it more and more. Grrrrr.

OK - I had to get that out. I feel better now.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Aim for the Al Qaeda T-Shirt

From what we are being told, Iraq is now crawling with Al Qaeda troops sneaking in from across the borders. Yes, that’s what we are being told. But how do we know it’s true? Are those troops wearing Al Qaeda t-shirts or some other form of easily identified markings? True, there are several sects that are fighting amongst themselves in Iraq – but is it really Al Qaeda? I don’t know about you but I’d like some evidence to back up this claim.

We have been duped before with regards to WMDs and the link between Iraq and 911 terrorists before the war. Who’s to say they are telling us the truth now? In my opinion, Al Qaeda is just a big scary word being used to instill fear in Americans so we will support this senseless war.

There is power in big scary words – but only if we believe without proof.

Friday, July 27, 2007

A Lie is a Lie

Republican Bush defenders are very quick to remind us that President Clinton lied under oath. That will never happen in the Bush Admin because they simply refuse to ever testify under oath.

But it is still a lie.

Darth Cheney

Vice President Dick Cheney is getting a new battery for his heart pace maker this week. I wish him a successful operation because I don’t wish physical harm on anyone. The funny part is that Dick (perfect name for him) has always been compared to Darth Vader from Star Wars. I suspect he has actually been dead for many years and the dark side of the force (can you say Satin?) has been keeping him going.

What is thy bidding Master? Excessive wealth at the expense of the common people? Senseless killing? World domination? I think he is doing a great job with all of those.


Well it seems cell phone ring tones have gone full circle. Over the last few years we have had to endure obnoxious ring tones from the Macarena to hard rap music. And I am totally guilty of this myself. But the entertaining part is what I’m hearing now. The most popular ring tones around my office sound like – you guessed it – phones! And not even modern phones – they sound like the old phones we used to hang on the wall with attached cords. I think it’s hilarious.

Pure BS

I would just like it noted for the record that I was never fooled by bottled water. Today a top news story reveals that most bottled water is actually just plain old tap water – possibly filtered. It specifically mentions Aqua Fina brand water bottled by none other than the Coca Cola Bottling Company. Surprise! Not.

I’ve always been suspicious this was true but it became most evident to me years ago when the night club I used to go to called The Copa only sold Copa brand water. Where did this water come from – the Copa springs? Please.

I’m glad this farce has finally been exposed to the public. We should all get refunds.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Three Possibly Irrational Fears of Mine

Dropping my keys down a storm drain while walking through the parking lot

Using the wrong date to check the lottery numbers and ripping up a winning ticket.

Saying “I love you” instead of “goodbye” when on the phone with my work clients

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

War is good for the economy

I read yesterday that the profits of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are now 6 billion a month! They call it "costs" in the article but money spent is money earned. It is little wonder that those who are profiting from this mess are in no hurry to end it. In the future I think it would be a great idea to ensure that those who wage war do not profit from it. There should be a very clear distinction and laws that prevent such a vested interest.

But, of course, laws don't seem to apply to the current administration.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Ports? Anyone?

The subject of who is operating our shipping ports here in the USA has quietly been dropped. I haven't heard a single word about it in more than a year. But who is running them? I guess this is my pet topic. I am still greatly concerned.

Drowning in the Waves

It started simply enough with the invention of radio waves (and maybe even before that). We can broadcast signals through the air invisibly and have them received on devices far away. Or bounce invisible waves off an object and detect movement or distance by the return waves. Recently we have discovered many more ways to use invisible waves in all sorts of devices. Just off the top of my head I can think of quite a few:
Satellite TV and Radio,
Cell Phones,
Wireless phones,
Remote Controls,
Wireless Network Routers,
Communication Satellites
Weather Radar
Airport Radar
Every day, all day, we are bombarded by all of this and I bet if I really thought about it there are many more. But just because they are invisible, does that mean they are not harmful? Is it possible all this interference is causing issues like depression, uncontrolled rage or fatigue? It seems like people were generally calmer back before all this technology was developed. I think an in-depth study should be done. We have already seen a possible impact on honey bees. If it can affect them – who knows how it impacts the rest of us.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Coincidence or Conspiracy

The news media is reporting it an amazing coincidence that the father of the man with a rare and hard to treat form of tuberculosis works at the CDC. I find that hard to swallow. It seems more likely that the father’s work is the cause of his son’s infection. And I dare say that the adult son of a man who works with the CDC would be conscious of the fact that he could spread this to others. Further, his travel itinerary is suspicious as well. They all seem apologetic and innocent on the news right now but I can’t help but think there is a larger story here – not short of a conspiracy. Someone needs to do some good investigation on this. It is just the type of behavior I would expect from a bio-terrorist.

And might I just add – as a test of our terrorist preparedness – our immigration system failed miserably. Imagine if someone was trying to spread something more deadly and contagious. The warnings were clear - don't let this person travel - and yet he did. We are not safe.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Jackie Gleason Isn't Dead Yet

Entertainment venues such as the Jackie Gleason Theater in Miami used to be named as such – after a person of interest and it was both commemorative and honorable to do so. Today, thanks to out of control marketing, our entertainment venues are named after corporations. These names are not only obnoxious but also confusing. Every time the venue is acquired by a new corporation, the name of the building is changed to match the corporation name – as in the Office Depot Center here in greater Fort Lauderdale. But wait, is that still the name? I heard an advertisement for something to be held at the Target Center – is that the same place? Or is the Target Center a new building I didn’t know about? You can see where the confusion lies. The Jackie Gleason Theater has been called that since I’ve lived here and I know exactly where it is.

Marketing has always been annoying to me but I suspect this trend is also irritating to many others. It is a practice that needs to stop immediately. Let the corporations that own the venue put up a huge logo on the building – I don’t really care about that. But the name of the facility should always be the same. I’ve heard it is bad luck to change the name of a boat – it can’t be good for a building either. If you want people to show up at your event – let them easily know where it is.

I think the Office Depot Center (Target Center?) would be much better named something recognizable and permanent – like the denbec Center. It does have a ring to it.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Who Knew All It Takes is Money

This new immigration policy the administration has come up with strikes me as very odd. In a nutshell it says all they have to do is go back to their native country, apply for legal status, pay a $5000.00 fine and stay out of trouble.

If all it takes is money I wonder how much it would cost for homosexuals to become real citizens with the same rights as everyone else? But I digress.

I’ve done a bit of thinking about this immigration issue and here is what I came up with. We have a lot of illegal immigrants in our country for one reason only – we were ineffective at monitoring our borders, ports, and airports. We basically dropped the ball when it comes to protecting our borders and a lot of people are here now. Do we really believe that these people will now just go back home and pay a fine and come back? Do we realize how much $5000.00 is to the poor immigrants that are here? According to President Bush, they are here doing the jobs Americans don’t want when in fact they are here doing the jobs we won’t do at those low wages. And they are supporting their entire families here and at home with those low wages. $5000.00 is a lot of money for this group of people. Who would volunteer to go through such a hassle when they are already here, already working, and already hard to track down? And I think requiring a fee like that will only promote the business of smuggling. It won’t work.

I hate to say it but I think the only solution we really have is amnesty for those already here. Then we need to figure out a way to give those already here a legal way to work and a way to tax them accordingly. We also need to do a MUCH better job of protecting our borders, ports, and airports. If we continue to fail in that mission, we will always have this problem. Our schools, hospitals, police force, and all social programs will be taxed to the limit by those that don’t pay taxes. By addressing the cause of the problem (the borders) and not the symptom (the illegal immigrants already here), we not only get closer to solving our immigration crises but also our terrorist crisis. Monitoring our borders is expensive (not as expensive as war) – but well worth the cost.

Does President Bush think we are stupid - or is it just him?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Do police cars really need that many lights?

Flawed Logic Explained

I would like to use an IT analogy to illustrate why the logic of “fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here” is terribly flawed.

Let’s say I am trying to keep viruses and other threats out of my computer. Would it make sense for me to go out to all those computers on the Internet that are potential threats and try to remove the viruses from those machines before they can infect mine? Of course not because this would require a huge investment in time and resources and would probably still prove ineffective – I couldn’t possibly get to them all. While I am distracted by the huge task of violating other people’s machines that may or may not be a threat to me, I may be missing critical updates that would protect my own machine. A better way is to make sure my own machine is properly protected with virus software and other security measures that will prevent attacks no matter where they come from. I don’t really need to be that concerned about what other people have on their machines because I know for a fact mine is protected.

Our National security should be handled in the same way. We do this with good foreign policy, diligent intelligence, a strong and prepared military that is standing by – not somewhere else, and by strict and thorough protection of our borders, ports, and airports. If a country is deemed a potential threat, we need to be extra diligent in screening who visits us from those places. If “they” can’t get to us, they won’t be able to hurt us.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


What has happened to men's shorts? They have gotten so long that they appear more like "high water" pants than shorts. Even competitive swimwear goes practically to the knee. The whole concept of shorts has been lost. Today's shorts don't keep you cool, don't let you move easier, or even keep you free of a bicycle chain. And if you wear them in the water they are heavy and take forever to dry. Plus the weird tan line you get looks just silly.

I miss the 80s when basketball shorts were thigh length and speedos were - well - speedos. Thank goodness gay men are not afraid to show themselves. We still wear shorter shorts and even regular speedos. We are both cool and hot. I'm sure women like to see men's legs too. If I were a woman - I'd be revolting!

Hell Burns Brighter

The fires of Hell got a little boost this week with the arrival of Jerry Falwell. At the risk of being as judgemental as he was, I just don't think he is going where he thought he was. I doubt seriously that Heaven has room for people filled with hatred for Gods own creations. This one man with his so called "moral majority" spread his special brand of hate like a plague. I pray for his sole and the soles of those he infected with his misguided rantings.

At least for now, we have one less homophobe on this earth. I wonder how long Pat Robertson will live?

Friday, April 20, 2007

Hiway Robbery

I read today that the current rise in gas prices is due to high demand and shortage in supply. If this is true, where are the lines at the pumps? How is it that we keep having these so called shortages in supply blamed on everything from storms to war tensions, but yet everyone has enough to put in their tank? Worse yet, the huge oil companies are recording record profits. Actually its more like obscene profits.

As a good friend of mine often says: "Something in the milk ain't clean".

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Pass It Off

President Bush has always said he will not put a timetable on pulling troops out of Iraq. But after the election when America said very clearly we want change and he still says no - it is beginning to look like he wants to make someone else deal with this mess. If he can just keep this bloody money machine going for a little while longer, someone else will have to figure out a way to end it or take the heat for what happens.

Yes, it could be a conspiracy theory on my part but it really is beginning to look that way to me. And if true - it is very sad.

Mr. President, I challenge you to find a way to end this nightmare BEFORE you leave office. How about that for a timetable.

Tricky Weeds

How do the weeds know what I'm going to plant? If I plant corn, suddenly there is a weed that looks almost like a corn plant! Plant a tomato and there it is - a weed that looks like a tomato plant. But I don't see a tomato looking weed next to the corn plant. How do they know??

Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Fountain of Old

Another year has passed like a week and as I celebrated my birthday yesterday I contemplated the aging of human kind. I just turned 42 and I hardly consider that old but I remember how old someone my age seemed when I was 18. I don’t feel old on the inside - my mind still thinks I’m in my late 20’s and I guess that is a good thing. My body however tells a different story. Even though I’ve been told I look young for my age, the gray hair (white?) that started in my 30’s is more than evident and the lines are starting to stay even when I’m not laughing. I’m not worried about getting old – in fact my goal is to live to at least 100 provided I have my faculties about me. Genetics might be on my side as my Grandmother who just passed this year was 101.

Still the thought of looking older isn’t very appealing. Science has helped us cheat death but we have not yet found the fountain of youth. Therefore we are growing into a population of the aged. If I do live to be 100 or more I’ll have lived over 2/3 of my life as an old person in they eyes of an 18 year old. I wonder if science will ever find a way to make the body age slower to match our increased longevity. I mean real science, not facelifts and plastic surgery that so many people now resort to. I suppose it is bound to happen sooner or later, but until then I guess I’ll embrace my gray hair and lines along with everyone else. At the rate the years are flying by I will be 100 by next week anyway.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Lets Hear It From the Haters

As a gay man, am I upset with the hateful things Tim Hardaway said? Well, maybe, but I think there is a more important story here. The fact is we live in America were even the haters are granted the right to free speech. Personally, I would rather have someone come out and say what is on their minds openly and freely rather than pretend to be my friend and then talk bad about me behind my back. And forget about the heartless apology later. If you have the guts (stupidity?) to spew hateful things in the public media, don't try to brush it aside to save your career. Own it. Let the public decide if they find it revolting and continue to support you or not. Michael Richards (Kramer from Seinfeld) - that goes for you too.

Having said that - if you are in the business of making laws or polices that affect others (Presidents, Vice Presidents, Senators, or even business owners) you need to put aside your own personal beliefs and make decisions based on what is right for the greater good. You might not agree with homosexuality (or whatever) and perhaps your personal religious beliefs might forbid something, but you must realize that all Americans deserve the SAME rights. For example, just as everyone in America has the equal right to free speech, every American should have an equal right to legally marry the person of their choice.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Blinded by the light

No wonder President Bush always thinks he is doing a great job - He only gives speeches in front of groups of his supporters. Anyone who is still supporting him at this point will do so no matter what. He should try giving speeches in open, mixed company. A boo or two would do him some good.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

My food tastes like butt

Several years ago we were blessed in Florida with a new law that bans smoking in restaurants. Finally we can smell and taste the food! We are also blessed in Florida with lots of nice weather for dining outside – especially in the winter months. We enjoy cool, calm, weather with sweet blossoms in the air and perfect settings by the water to enjoy a meal alfresco. But good luck trying to find any fresh air on a restaurant patio now – that’s where you will find the smokers! Whoever crafted our new law really dropped the ball regarding this major side effect. Why can’t they just ban smoking in restaurants totally? Smoke and food just don’t mix. If you have a habit that affects everyone around you with an awful stench and life threatening smog that you can’t control for even an hour, perhaps you should eat at home.

Of course everyone has a “right” to smoke, as long as you don’t affect anyone else. That includes your spouse and children at home and in your car. True that doesn't leave the smoker with many options, but you could always quit.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Lets Be Productive

Many people and politicians have been opposed to the war in Iraq since the beginning even though some may have voted for it based on the information presented to us at the time. Clearly we were misled and now a lot of people are understandably very upset at this devastating war. But I'm not sure I can agree with the time spent by Congress on a non-binding resolution to the increase in troop levels. If it is indeed non-binding, then it is non-productive. I will not, however call it a waste of time. I do understand the reason for it, especially since President Bush appears more like a Dictator each day. We do need to send a clear message to the rest of the world that we do not all agree his plan and in fact, many of us vehemently oppose it.

But there must be a better way. We really should be spending our time on something productive that can actually bring about change.

On the other hand, I do support impeaching the President for misleading the American people in starting this war. That would also be somewhat unproductive but certainly fair in light of what they did to President Clinton. It would also send a clear message to the world and to the history books that we were misled (ie: lied to) by this Administration. Many people have died for that misinformation.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Bags Are a Blessing

Who ever decided that bagless vacuum cleaners were an improvement? I was sucked into buying one (pun intended) by cleaver marketing and I curse the day I did. Before when the bag was full I simply removed it, threw it away and installed a new one in minutes. Now I have to take the machine outside (to keep the dust from going back into the room), empty its contents into an old plastic shopping bag (Bagless?), throw that out while choking on the flying dust, take the clogged filter out and clean it with a hose, let it dry (or it will mold) and then put it back together hours later. This is progress?

In the ads for these machines the brightly colored "stuff" they vacuum up looks so neat flying around in circles. Real dirt and dog hair? Not so cute.

A better solution would be to leave the bag in - but make them standard so that all machines use the same one. Then you wouldn't have a hard time finding the right one for your machine. That would be progress.

Friday, February 02, 2007

The Big Game!

The Big Game (Super Bowl) is on this weekend! But isn't there a big game every weekend? My thoughts on that are here. Once again I am truly amazed at the amount of MONEY circulating around this event. Will any of that money go to a worthy cause? Nope.

One of the big news stories this week was about counterfeit Super Bowl gear. The horror! No doubt a lot of money will be made on this merchandise. Of course I do understand the importance of copyright laws etc. but imagine how many poor people could be helped if they were just allowed to sell some of these products. But money does not belong in the hands of the poor and so there is a huge police effort to stop this practice. They say life is not fair and this is another perfect example.

My suggestion? Let the business of professional sports make their money on the tickets, advertisments and parties. Let the small businesses be allowed to use the official logo to create all sorts of memorabilia. Not only would you get neater stuff but more people could profit from this event. And the police could go about the business of protecting and serving.

Let's Pray It Works

I've waited a while to comment on President Bush's "New Direction" in Iraq because everyone else has already blogged about it. But I feel I should at least briefly put in my $.02 and I really only have one thing to say. While I feel his proposal is "too little too late", I pray with all my heart that it actually does work. This war is one of the most significant events of my lifetime and if we fail, it will have dire consequences. So I'm not going to bash this new policy - I'll leave that to the politicians because it is their job. For my part I will pray and pray hard that Peace and Democracy can prevail in Iraq.

Walk to Cool Down

If only people would leave their cars parked and walk or ride a bike instead whenever possible, we would not only reduce greenhouse gases but also stop the trend of being a nation that is over weight. It is a practice I do myself and it works very well. If I didn't have a 25 mile commute I would even ride my bike to work. I do carpool though - another thing more people could do.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Know the Cause - Find the Solution

President Bush said again in his State of the Union Address that the terrorists are motivated because they despise our freedom and liberty. Once again he misleads the American public. I think it’s more likely that they want us out of their countries and their business. Until we address the real reason for their angst, the terrorists will continue their mission.

Despite Iraq, President Bush didn’t start this conflict – it started many years ago. But the pre-emptive strike on Iraq and the continued occupation, has only added fuel to the fire. A lot of fuel.

Sitcom Drama

One of the biggest disappointments in my life – on the scale of Santa Clause and the Tooth Fairy – has to do with the reality of TV sitcoms I watched as a kid. It’s not that I ever thought those shows were real; I always knew they were actors in fantasy families. But I always imagined that they were happily doing so for the sole purpose of our entertainment. Now, due to TV shows like E! True Hollywood Stories and others, I learn about the business side of TV and the real dramas that happened behind the scenes on those shows. It makes me sad to know that Mrs. Evans on “Good Times” - the rock of that family - was really struggling with management decisions on her salary. And I don’t think I wanted to know that many of my favorite innocent TV characters were dealing with serious drug addictions, problems with the law, or other issues. Factor in the influence advertisers have on what content actually makes it to the screen and its almost depressing!

I guess that’s what they mean when they say ignorance is bliss.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Plant Him Already!

President Ford was 93 when he recently died. He will be 103 before they finally put him in the ground!