Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A Canadian With a Heart...

Remember all those wise cracks I made about Canada? All the comments about Canadians being rude, being bad tippers, and being really horrible drivers? Well, between you and me, they're still true. Buuuuuuut, if I'm ever anywhere near Canada's Governor General, Michaelle Jean, and you ask me about THOSE particular comments, you'll get nothing back from me but a quick punch to the throat.

I had never heard about this woman before, but she makes Wolverine from the X-Men Comics look downright 'kittenish'.

During a recent trip to the Artic, Michaelle Jean gutted a seal (presumably it was 'dead' at the time of the 'gutting' - at least I'm hoping it was), she sliced meat from the carcass, then she removed, and ate the seal's heart - raw.

After munching on the seal's heart, the Governor General of Canada told the Inuit people she was meeting with that the heart was "absolutely delicious" and that it "tasted like sushi".
(Personally, I was expecting that she would say it tasted like "chicken", but I guess this designation is reserved for roasted rattlesnake "bites" and frog "bits" (I DO miss Kermit - I can't believe that he's gone...)).

Although, now that I think about it, I have never EATEN sushi...

So what else might I be able to compare it to for lack of a 'sushi' comparison?
"Thanks for the seal heart, it tasted just like _________!"
(Choose 'taste option' from one of the following to fill in the blank above:)
a.) pancreas
b.) seal heart
c.) a really large fuzzy moth
d.) gym socks
e.) the inside of my dog's ear

Please don't ask me how I know what the above things taste like. Some secrets need to remain unspoken... Forever.

So, anyway, here's this nice lady from Canada ripping the heart out of a seal and it's all being covered by the Media for global reporting.
This is THAT seal:

No, I'm kidding. This is NOT (as far as I know) the actual seal which had its heart eaten out of its chest by Canada's Governor General. I know this because, media reporters covering the event were quoted as saying, "The actual seal whose heart was eaten by Michaelle was MUCH cuter than your run-of-the-mill baby seal whose had its heart eaten out of its chest. It was extraordinarily cute, in a heartless kind of way..."

Soooo, if you're ever out somewhere surrounded by a group of angry Canadian politicians, grab the closest baby seal you can find, throw it up into the air over their heads and shout "Eat its heart out you baby-seal-heart-eating-monsters!" Next, run away quickly and HOPE that they didn't take some kind of baby-seal-heart-speed-eating course over the Internet weeks earlier. If you cannot find a baby seal to secure your escape, look for an otter.

I'm thinking that an otter-heart might taste a lot like sushi also. Or, maybe it tastes more like 'prairie dog'? If I were Canadian, I'd probably know the answer to that last question.

Unfortunately (or perhaps, fortunately) for me, I have never eaten the heart of a seal, prairie dog, peek-a-poo, or porcupine. I just wish I could say the same about 'blue whale' heart. Now THAT tasted like sushi (which makes no sense at all because the blue whale is a mammal, right?) and I must admit, the heart was very filling. Yumm-O!

I don't know much about politics, but what I do know is that it is better to keep your mouth shut when surrounded by Canadian-Political-Seal-Heart-Eating-Types.

And if you ever see THESE TWO North American politicians together -- keep an armful of baby otters handy, just in case you have even the REMOTEST resemblance to a baby seal...

President Barack Obama Governor General Michaelle Jean

Regarding the 'eating the seal heart' story referenced above, it's true. You can access it by clicking the following link:
"Take another piece of my heart now baby..."

I'll bet you didn't catch this story on CNN last night, did you? And why not? Because at CNN they're... "Chicken!" (But they taste like 'Rattlesnake')

Anyway, I 'Otter' be going to work now. Before I'm late.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Eating One of Her Own...

I didn't plan on posting anything today (you know, Memorial Day weekend and all) but I was truly surprised when I stumbled across the following video clip which aired on MSNBC in a report by Rachel Maddow.

Didn't the folks at MSNBC do everything they could to get Senator Obama elected as President? Apparently the Honeymoon is over and MSNBC and President Obama are moving to separate bedrooms. I don't dare speculate on where CNN will be spending the night.

I must add two comments of my own regarding Rachel's report:

1.) President Obama made his speech in front of a 'reproduction' of the Constitution of the United States (the caretakers of the document do not want it to fade any more than it already has over the past 200+ years.)

Rachel need not worry about President Obama making such an offensive speech in front of the US Constitution because, in reality, it wasn't REAL.

2.) This could be Rachel Maddow's last LIVE report on MSNBC.So what did Rachel say when she USED to work at MSNBC?

(If you have difficulty accessing the video (I am) please click this link)

Oh my.

So long Rachel Maddow; we hardly knew ye'.


p.s.: It is Memorial Day Weekend. Please take a moment to remember WHY most of you reading this have Monday 'off from work'. The freedoms we have were NOT given to us without cost. They were earned.

This Memorial Day take a moment to say a silent prayer for those who gave so much so that we can take this Monday 'off', but don't take it for granted. That which can be earned in blood can also be taken away with the stroke of a pen.

No, I'm not talking about a day off with pay...

While President Obama doesn't believe that we are a 'Christian Nation' speaking abroad, I believe that our country was founded on Judeo-Christian values. One of us (either me, or President Obama), I'm sure, is wrong. As for me, I'm pretty sure that I'm right. He will most likely feel the same way (that I am right -- Hee, hee).

For you folks who served, God bless you. And thanks for what you did, and for what you continue to do in inspiring future generations in service to our country.

Have a great weekend folks. Be safe and be nice to each other.

We're all in this together.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Clink, Clank, Clunk...

This just in to the Moos Room: The House of Representatives is currently working on legislation that will allow YOU to get a cut of TARP dollars!

Sure, why not?

Q.: Do you own a vehicle?
Q.: Does it, um, run? (Although I don't honestly know if this is a requirement -- it's a government proposal after all and a vehicle which does not run, uses no gas! This, according to the Obama Administration is an EXCELLENT vehicle!)
Q.: Would YOU like to have a new car, truck, or van?
Q.: Can you make your children 'smaller' than they used to be? (Because you'll be 'right-sizing' them to fit into your new Honda Fit.)

Yes Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, the U.S. House of Representatives (Motto: "We represent YOU, so YOU don't have to think for yourself") has a DEAL for you! Your old vehicle may be worth CASH! Yes, you too can get your hands on a little 'TARP CASH' (makes sense, since, ah, it's your money already) but it's cold hard cash, all the same.

(Warning: You'll need to BUY a car, truck, or van to qualify for the big cash payout. You'll need to spend money to get money. Sounds like something my wife came up with...)

Plan on bringing about $25,000 - $35,000 to the dealership with you. Make yourself at home and feel free to take the flat screen LCD TV from the GM or Chrysler Dealership service area waiting area when leaving, since in reality, it belongs to you now. The dealership is okay with this, I just checked. Go ahead, go for it. (Bring screw-drivers)

One last 'GOTCHA': You'll 'probably' need to have a job to qualify for new vehicle financing. (Although, if you buy a house, this 'unfair lending requirement' for funding by Fannie and Freddie has been waived (but I think they may have fixed this -- I'll get back to you)). EMPLOYMENT TIP: I hear that the Federal government is hiring.

Those 'wacky folks' in the U.S. House are looking to pass legislation which will allow YOU to get really STUPID trade-in rebates if you purchase a more fuel-efficient vehicle than the one that you are currently driving.

How stupid (from a strictly monetary perspective)?

Well, let's look, shall we?

Purchase a vehicle with 2+ MPG than today's: $3,500
Purchase a vehicle with 4+ MPG than today's: $4,500

But don't worry, it's the GOVERNMENT'S MONEY, it's not like it's YOURS!

Won't you feel great when you find that your neighbor who's currently in bankruptcy (and living in her house for free) gets 20% to 25% off the price of her new vehicle (because she's living with her boyfriend who HAS a job but wasn't on the mortgage in the first place so he's living for free too), but you can't buy a new car because YOU are stupid enough to actually pay your bills every month?!Yeah, I think that's just swell too! (Why DID I stop drinking?)

Q.: But seriously, who in their right mind would want to support a Bill that gives MORE money (that hasn't been printed or funded yet) away, and WHY?

A.: Apparently the Bill has bi-Partisan (maybe 'bi-Polar'?) sponsors in the House AND President Obama thinks it's just GREAT! This will allow folks to buy more fuel-efficient vehicles, stimulate the economy, AND save us about 42 barrels of fossil fuels per year! (Representing approximately 2 T-Rex, 1 Terradactyl, and 3 Triceratops -- that's REAL savings!)

So if you hear about the 'Cash for Clunkers' program working it's way through Congress? Yeah, this is the one... Here's a tongue-in-cheek article written by a 'car guy' that you can read if you like. (Whoa, really long embedded link, eh?)

Remember: Knowledge is power. I can be used by you, or it can be used against you. (Except in Congress, where common-sense knowledge will be used in SPITE of you.)

And please, take this money from the Government and help us save the dinosaurs, before they're all gone...


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

From My Cold Dead Hoof

Maybe it's just me.

Yeah, it probably is JUST ME, but...

My nineteen year-old son asked me the other day, "Dad, the things going on in Washington, DC and across the country... Have you ever seen anything like this before?"

I briefly considered doing my BEST 'Yoda' impression and saying something like, "Fail Democrats will, when gathered many they are together", but I decided that it was a serious question, and he deserved a serious answer.

I thought for a moment and answered him truthfully, "You know, I remember things being weird during the Carter Admininstration, but the Obama Administration is creating 'The Perfect Storm' of socio-economic weirdness. While I was living through The Jimmy Carter Experience in the 1970's, I was your age, so I wasn't really paying that much attention, you know, working at the Diner, and all... But I do remember a lot of 'hushed conversations' being had between my parents. They were spooked -- a lot."

As I thought about it my mind wandered back to the 'Misery Index' of the Carter Years.

(Flashback in: 3 ,2 , 1...)

The Carter Years ('Clickable' Links for your reading enjoyment)
> Unemployment + Inflation (a.k.a.: The Misery Index)
> Energy Crisis
> Runaway Inflation
> Defense Spending Cuts
> In-Fighting With Congressional Democrats
> Stagflation

I could go on... But why??? Living through the Carter Administration and during the Obama Administration forces me to accept the fact that I've lived through this ALL before.

Having lived through the Carter Years and now living in the midst of President Obama's first (and only) term is like being 'Re-Incarnated' without the 'uncomfortable transitional step' of DEATH.

The ONLY thing different between NOW and THEN is that the President in the White House has TWO daughters, as opposed to ONE. (Although I guess I'm discounting the fact that President Obama, I believe is also 'taller' than President Carter.)

By way of illustration, see if you can determine which of the following represents President Carter and which represents President Obama?

(Feel free to hum the theme music from Jeopardy at this point)

Q.: Who gave a nationally-televised address in which he identified what he believed to be a "crisis of confidence" among the American people?

Q.: Who said "Human identity is no longer defined by what one does, but by what one owns."

Q.: Who issued a "hit list" of 19 projects that he claimed were "pork barrel" spending. And said that he would veto any legislation that contained projects on this list?

Q.: Who wanted to encourage energy conservation and the development of national energy resources, including renewables such as wind and solar energy?

Q.: Who signed legislation greatly increasing the payroll tax for Social Security, and appointed record numbers of women, blacks, and Hispanics to government and judiciary jobs?

Q.: Who, during the Presidential campaign, pledged to cut spending and reduce the budget deficit?

Q.: Who told Americans via televised speech that our dependence on foreign oil represents, "a clear and present danger to our nation"?

Okay, so can you link the above items back to President Carter, or, President Obama? If you're curious, shoot me a note and I'll send you the answer back RIGHT TO YOU! (I don't want to ruin it for the rest of the kids by giving the answers out here.)

Q.: How can we turn it all around?

A.: We can, assuming we don't end up on the wrong side of the bun...

The Moo-vement Begins...

Check this out -->

p.s.: No, I don't own a gun, and I'm not advocating that YOU buy a gun. All I'm saying is at some point in your life you have the God-given (even though "We're not a Christian nation" (at least, according to President Obama)) right to say, "No".

Being President doesn't automatically make you 'right' -- much the same way that being a cow doesn't automatically make you 'wrong'.

It's not a LEFT vs. RIGHT 'thing', it's a RIGHT vs. WRONG 'thing'.



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Dinner With The Stones!

I dropped two of my three sons at Boy Scout Camp Sunday afternoon. Then I, my wife, and oldest son went to a restaurant that we had wanted to try for quite a while. We held off visiting in the past because we had heard that it was on the 'pricey' side. In my world, if a restaurant doesn't have a 'paper sack option', it's pretty much falls automatically into the 'pricey' category.

This evening's trip to Russell's Steak House worked from a couple of perspectives. First, there were three of us versus the five of us that we normally have, and second, my son received an $84 cash 'rebate' from the Boy Scout Trails End Popcorn Sale held this spring. We had CASH (WooHoo!) AND we were missing two-thirds of our kids (this NEVER happens). I'd feel more guilty about leaving kids at camp and eating about $80 worth of food if I didn't know that beginning this Tuesday I will be spending the remainder of the week at camp in a tent lined with spiders, crickets, and some sort of weird 'hatching' cocoons, surrounded by skunks, porcupines, and one old, and near-sighted bear. (This apparently, is the real cost associated with going out to dinner and eating a pretty good Filet Mignon for one night - spending four nights in a tent inhabited with creatures straight out of a Dean Koontz book.)

The restaurant was pretty good, with the only major downside being that the awning outside made it look eerily like the entrance of the 'Haunted Mansion' at Disney World in Orlando. I found myself looking for tombstones that bore the old carvings of, "Here Lies Fred, A Rock Fell On His Head", "I Told You I Was Sick", and my personal favorite, "He Called Jim a Liar". You know, it just struck me that the world (my world, at least) contains profound coincidences and 'interesting relationships', just out of chance. I named this entry "Dinner With the Stones", talked about tombstones, and I have yet to get to the real point of this post. In fact I'm not writing about 'tombstones', but rather, 'kidney stones'.

There was a table of eight next to our table of three at this dark, reserved, and very respectable restaurant. These nice folks arrived, apparently, just before we did (they had just gotten rolls when we received our menus -- I DO pay attention to my surroundings some of the time, no matter what my wife says). They had ordered, and had begun to discuss the topic of the day, which was the fact that the older couple at the head of the table were celebrating their sixtieth wedding anniversary (Writer's Note: These folks deserve an award. They have been married since Harry Truman was President of the United States -- congratulations, that's phenomenal!)

The table provided seating for six other folks who came out to share the special day with this amazing couple. I'm not sure which of the other people at the table started the following series of comments since my back was to them, but someone seated directly behind me happened to mention that, "Yes, I've had kidney stones many times. And they certainly do hurt when they come out...". For future reference, in case YOU are are wondering, I've had fountain drinks many times. Normally soft drinks do NOT hurt. However, they do hurt a great deal when they come out your NOSE and onto the table and the bread plate directly in front of you at an admittedly, nice, restaurant. Don't even ask about my shirt.

But wait, there's more! Someone else at the table chimed in that they had had their 'spleen' removed seven years earlier, and that was NOT a pleasant experience either. Determined not to repeat my prior 'There she blows!' event, I put my drink down moments earlier and avoided a second nasal soft drink expulsion by mere seconds. In an effort not to be outdone, every person seated at the table behind me had their own medical experiences to discuss with the 'group'.

"I think I had to get a shot for Hepatitis one time." A man said.

"Really, how long ago WAS that? And why would you need it?" A woman asked, obviously curious.

"Oh, that was long before I met you, honey." He responded, and then he fell quiet again. Now that I think about it, I don't believe I heard him again over the next hour that we remained in the restaurant.

This was curious to me, so I just looked up the definition of Hepatitis so we could all get 'uncomfortable' with this man together:

hepatitis /hep·a·ti·tis/ (hep?ah-ti´tis) pl. hepati´tides Inflammation of the liver.
hepatitis A a self-limited viral disease of worldwide distribution, usually transmitted by oral ingestion of infected material but sometimes transmitted parenterally; most cases are clinically inapparent or have mild flu-like symptoms; any jaundice is mild. (How bad could it be, it's 'worldwide'?)

anicteric hepatitis viral hepatitis without jaundice. (Oh, NO jaundice, there's a bonus)
hepatitis B an acute viral disease transmitted primarily parenterally, but also orally, by intimate personal contact, and from mother to neonate. Prodromal symptoms of fever, malaise, anorexia, nausea, and vomiting decline with the onset of clinical jaundice, angioedema, urticarial skin lesions, and arthritis. After 3 to 4 months most patients recover completely, but some may become carriers or remain ill chronically. (Okay, so this 'B' one is NOT so good to have since you can remain 'ill chronically' for the REST OF YOUR LIFE.)

hepatitis C a viral disease caused by the hepatitis C virus, commonly occurring after transfusion or parenteral drug abuse; it frequently progresses to a chronic form that is usually asymptomatic but that may involve cirrhosis. (Nope, not digging this one either...)

Okay, so the man's silence is a mystery no more. Personally, I would've tried to keep this little gem to myself rather than sharing it while waiting for dinner in a dark and very quiet restaurant. Not well played, my friend. Your chances of getting to the 60th anniversary with your spouse just went the way of the 10 cent 'pay phone' call (you can 'sort of' remember it, but you can't imagine it really ever happening again.) Sorry dude, next time tell everyone about how your knee hurts just before it rains, it's probably true and it won't raise any pesky follow-up questions.

Other conversations continued, ones about surgeries, ones about mis-diagnosed ailments, ones about loved ones who have 'gone away' due to bad genes, bad dietary habits, bad habits, and even one to 'good habits' (apparently a cousin became a Nun...). The ebb and flow of the conversation was mesmerizing.

Conversation at our table was lighter than typical. At first I thought this was because there were three of us versus the five we normally hang with. But in reality, I don't think we have 'lived enough' of our lives to have had the experiences that these folks have had. We had nothing to speak about when compared to the constant verbal buzz that drifted the three feet from our neighbors' table over to ours (I'm assuming that the decibel level of medical infirmities conversation was due to the age of the speakers, they were not 'quiet folk'. Although none referenced any hearing ailments in their list of illnesses). We sat, we spoke quietly amongst ourselves, we ate our dinners and then we went home.

I have a deep respect for these folks who after sixty years appeared to be still 'very happy' with each other. I wish them and their friends the best, but I need to remember that as I get further down the road into double digit anniversaries not to bring up any medical war stories during the course of our celebration. There might be some 'wise guy' at the table next to me looking for an idea for his next blog post.

God bless you folks. I hope you laugh a lot, love a lot, but by way of 'Free' advice, don't ever admit to the 'Kidney Stones thing' or 'Hepatitis thing' out loud, in public ever again. Regarding your commitment to each other, I am in awe of you folks. Keep the magic going (you wild and crazy 70+ year old kids!)

I hope illness never finds you, and if it does, please don't talk about it at dinner.

To sum up, I learned that Diet Pepsi can burn effectively enough to render my nasal passages useless today, but in spite of my temporary congestion, my hope for mankind has increased exponentially since dinner last night. Good choices, good friends, and good spouses never go out of style.

I also learned however, that kidney stones are NEVER cool. And they hurt a lot. Life gives you 'ups' and 'downs'. It's how we live with each that determines the measure of our lives.

In hindsight, the Diet Pepsi out the nose isn't so bad. In fact, I'm smiling as I type this.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Moos Clippings

Feeling like you've missed something lately? Well, you're not alone. I've been surfing the Web and have come across a few stories which you probably haven't heard about. I'm assuming that you haven't heard about them, because, I own a TV (AND a radio in my car) and have NOT heard about them either. I guess the interesting thing is that they have been typically posted after 6pm on weeknights, after most of us are out of our cars and presumably eating dinner with our families.

So what have YOU and I missed in the past 48 hours? Oh brother...

May 5, 2009 6:38pm: WASHINGTON (AP)— The Obama administration wants the United States to spend $63 billion over the next six years to fight global diseases and provide more aid for prenatal and postnatal care, children's health and fighting tropical diseases.

"We cannot fix every problem," Obama said in a written statement Tuesday. "But we have a responsibility to protect the health of our people, while saving lives, reducing suffering, and supporting the health and dignity of people everywhere. America can make a significant difference in meeting these challenges and that is why my administration is committed to act."

Obama plans to release his budget proposal in detail on Thursday. Ahead of the formal announcement, the White House has been detailing pieces of it, including $8.6 billion for the fiscal year that starts Oct. 1. The request is a $460 million increase over this year's budget.

Rock star and anti-poverty activist Bono praised the increase in funding.
"The question is no longer whether we can fight these diseases in the poorest countries, it is how much do we want to do? The president is answering 'a lot,"' the Irish singer said in a statement released from his advocacy group, ONE. "His strategic leadership on these issues is protecting the long-term interests of the people in his own country as well as saving vulnerable lives overseas."

If Obama wins approval of his budget request, the U.S. commitment would constitute more than 70% of global health funding.Last year, Congress passed and Bush signed legislation to triple U.S. spending from $15 billion over the previous five years to $48 billion covering 2009 and the next four years.

For the complete article, please click the link which follows:
Thanks America for providing 70% of the World's Global Health Funding!

May 4th, 2009 6:42pm USA TODAY -- Federal aid is top revenue for statesIn a historic first, Uncle Sam has supplanted sales, property and income taxes as the biggest source of revenue for state and local governments.

The shift shows how deeply the recession is cutting. Federal stimulus money aimed at reviving the economy and a sharp drop in tax collections have altered, at least temporarily, the traditional balance of how states, cities, counties and schools pay for their operations.

The sales tax had been the No. 1 source of state and local revenue since the mid-1970s, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Before that, property taxes were the primary source. That changed in the first three months of 2009.Federal grants — early stimulus money plus conventional federal aid — soared 15% in the first quarter to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $437 billion, eclipsing sales taxes, which fell 2%.

For the complete article, click the link which follows:
Thanks President Obama for Providing More Income to the States Than At Any Other Time In History!

May 5th, 2009 USA TODAY -- Ginsburg: Court needs another woman
WASHINGTON — Three years after Justice Sandra Day O'Connor left the Supreme Court, the impact of having only one woman on the nation's highest bench has become particularly clear to that woman — Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Her status as the court's lone woman was especially poignant during a recent case involving a 13-year-old girl who had been strip-searched by Arizona school officials looking for drugs. During oral arguments, some other justices minimized the girl's lasting humiliation, but Ginsburg stood out in her concern for the teenager.

"They have never been a 13-year-old girl," she told USA TODAY later when asked about her colleagues' comments during the arguments. "It's a very sensitive age for a girl. I didn't think that my colleagues, some of them, quite understood."

As Justice David Souter prepares to retire at the end of the term this summer, the significance of Ginsburg's position as the nine-member court's only woman has become a point of broad discussion. President Obama is under pressure from groups such as the National Women's Law Center to nominate another woman.

In interviews with USA TODAY before Souter's retirement announcement Friday, Ginsburg said the court needs another woman. "Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. I don't say (the split) should be 50-50," Ginsburg said. "It could be 60% men, 40% women, or the other way around. It shouldn't be that women are the exception."

For the complete article, please click the link which follows:
We Need More Women

I thought you may find these recent news events interesting. Well, at least, I did.

I'm not going to comment at length on the above (mostly because I have to go to work), but I'll leave it up to you to form your own opinion of the stories. I'm wondering if you have you heard of any of these stories? What I will leave you with however, is the following questions:

1. Should the United States be paying 70% of the world's Global Health Funding?

2. Should the Federal Government be Funding States to a greater extent than the states are funding themselves? (And, um, if we ARE the 'States' and the States make up the 'United States of America', and the Federal Government represents US... How are we paying ourselves more than we can, you know, afford to pay ourselves out of our normal tax contributions? Where's the money coming from?)

3. Should a Supreme Court Justice be advocating for 'Quotas'? Is that, like, 'Constitutional'?

4. Lastly, if a Supreme Court Justice believes that we should do things just to be 'fair', is she 'fairly' interpreting the Constitution during her regular day job?

Just wondering...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The Dingo Did It

"All right MISTER, walk a straight line for me!" The officer shouts to the man he has just pulled over.

"But officer, I, I, I, can't!" The man continues to blubber as he slides to his knees on the roadway directly in front of the State Trooper.
This happens often in Loudoun County, Virginia. In Loudoun County, Virginia there are fewer 'straight lines' than there used to be.
Don't believe me? Check out the photo below:

Welcome to Loudoun County, Virginia! Now, leave!

Just don't do it in a straight line!

Q.: So why won't the folks in Loudoun County paint a straight line?

A.: Because the Dingo stole their Road Painter (reference above photo).

Yes, the Virginia Department of Transportation has decided that in an effort to S-L-O-W traffic in several congested areas that they would paint 'interesting and baffling' patterns on the roadways to slow down (in reality, to 'dis-orient' drivers and force them to slow down lest they wind up in a fiery crash (in highly-trafficked pedestrian and cyclist sections of the street)).

A big 'High Five' to our friends in Loudoun, Virginia for having the foresight to 'dis-orient' drivers (who, by their own admission) are traveling at high rates of speed where old people, children, joggers, and Nannies are walking little babies in strollers tend to be found!

I, personally, never would have thought of this! But who would?

To quote a spokesperson from the VDOT: "While at first motorists may be a little disoriented, the main point is to get them to pay attention and slow down through that area."

He then added, "We've found that the sound of screaming children and the 'thud' and 'crunch' associated with striking elderly citizens has been statistically proven to slow down traffic by as much as 7 miles per hour!" (No, I made this quote up, but the first quote above is TRUE.)

The Australians (you know, the British Penal Colony folks who we don't talk about so much any more since Paul Hogan got really old and scary-looking) came up with this gem of an idea for traffic control (the first idea of placing live kangaroos and wallabees on leashes in the street didn't work so well, and it was REALLY messy).

The Australians are the same folks who want us to believe that whenever a child disappears in Australia that the, "Dingo ate the baby!" (You can find more detail on this in the embedded link in "A." above. Assuming that you really like to read about such things, have at it... Okay, I know, it only happened ONCE, but it COULD happen again... And I'm NOT going to Australia since I LOVE my family (and don't want them eaten by 'wild mutant dogs'.)

As for me, we'll be vacationing in Mexico this year, I hear the tourist traffic is WAY off and I can really get a deal on airfare and lodging! Hmm, I wonder why that is...

So the folks at the Virginia Department of Transportation (taking their lead from the six people left alive in Australia (all others were eaten by dingoes)) have decided to paint 'crazy lines' on roadways at several locations in the state to SLOW Virginians down.

If they see people actually slowing down as a result of these zigzag lines, I can only assume that you'll see more lines painted in Virginia. If however, they find people speeding up, taking their hands off the wheel and hanging their heads out the windows of their cars shouting, "This is better than acid man!!! Way better than acid! It's just like 'Jumping into Hyperspace in Star Wars!!!" I can only assume that the Virginia Department of Transportation will lobby Washington for more 'shovel-ready project money' so they can afford to physically BEND the streets to match the stripes, increasing the driving RUSH for thrill seeking, high-speed drivers.

THIS is 'governmental logic' at its finest.

Not to be out-done by Virginia, Washington has plans for some road-painting of its own (although the Obama Administration admits that these road paintings might take a 'wee' bit longer):

Hello, welcome to Washington, DC. Please drive safely!

Nobody, but nobody beats Washington, DC at anything. Ever!

For the complete story, click the following link (I know, I know, some of you don't believe anything I say, but I have never lied to you (by accident)) -- Loudoun Gets Funky

Never doubt the Cow Guy.


Friday, May 1, 2009


Last week I did a post on 'Hope'. In keeping with the ongoing political themes of 'Hope' and 'Change' I'm delighted to present 'Hope's' cousin-once-removed, 'Change'.

I guess the thing to be learned from the following video link is that you don't have to change the country (or the World) all at once. Changing one small piece of the world at a time is just fine. Even if the 'piece of the world' is a train station in a far-away place with an exotic sounding name.I dare you to view the following and not end a little 'Happier' than when you began it. This, my friend, is true 'Change'.

Click here to view video -> CHANGE

As for the stuff being peddled in Washington these days... Well, it's mostly just your run of the mill politics and bumper-sticker sound bites. I have had very few personal experiences (actually, the word 'NONE' comes to mind) where politicians have made me feel joyful, or even a 'wee' bit happy.

Real change is seeing the potential for joy and sharing it with others. A friend of mine shared the above clip with me, I share it with you here.

As for President Obama's First 100 Days, you'll need to read about that elsewhere. I'm trying to be 'joyful' and stay away from political stuff today.

Today is my birthday. Fifty years ago today Mrs. Kane delivered her bouncing baby boy into the world. (I don't 'bounce' as much as I used to. Now I'm just happy when I don't fall down.)

I think that I must visit Antwerp one day. There is joy there.

May you find joy wherever you are, whenever you can.

If you can't find the joy in your life, you're not looking hard enough... The reality is that it's all around you -- just open your eyes.

Oh, and if you can't see it, go ahead and make it. (Soundtrack optional)