Blog Archives

Squirrel Food and Black Helicopters

blackhelicoptersI usually don’t like to write about politics but after reading a news article today I just couldn’t resist.

A new survey conducted by the Democratic polling firm Public Policy Polling, found that 49% of Republican voters believe that Barack Obama did not legitimately win reelection because the community organizing group ACORN somehow interfered with the vote.

That’s right, half of all Republican voters say that ACORN engaged in voter fraud and somehow aided in stealing the 2012 election for President Obama. Personally (aside from the fact that group closed it’s doors in 2010), I find it hard to imagine that anyone would actually believe that a little group of people (with the same name as squirrel food) could have power enough to decide elections. As if the Citizens United decision wasn’t already bad enough.

Conspiracy theories, black helicopters and end of the world falsehoods are fast becoming the norm. Seems like every election (no matter which party wins) there are always allegations of voter fraud and intimidation. And you’ve just got to love how the folks on talk radio perpetuate these myths. Whatever is said on the airwaves suddenly becomes gospel. We are a susceptible society and it’s scary.

Back in 1938, Orson Wells went on the radio and announced that we were being invaded by aliens. Of course, that “announcement” was actually part of a skit he was doing based upon the H. G. Wells novel, ‘War of The Worlds’, but it was more than enough to make audiences believe that we were actually under attack. It was entertainment, much like what the talk radio folks today like to consider themselves to be instead of news.

I firmly believe that our society is more than ready for a second coming of ‘War of The Worlds’. In fact, I would go so far as to say that if every talking head on the radio (conservative and liberal) all got together as a joke and formulated a “skit” to say a zombie apocalypse was taking place, people would actually buy it.

Sure, it’s absolutely ludicrous to suggest that our world has suddenly become an episode of ‘The Walking Dead’, but consider the fact that many of these same people who listen religiously to talk radio DO believe in Bigfoot sightings. I’m convinced quite a few people, if they heard it on the radio by their favorite broadcaster would actually believe it.

You want my advice? Forget this voter fraud and world ending nonsense. Take all of these outlandish thoughts and file them alongside stories of the Abominable Snowman and Loch Ness Monster. Because the truth is, if ACORN (or any other group) had the power to somehow rig an entire United States election process without anyone ever finding out, we deserve to be taken over by aliens. Conspiracy theories are for the birds.

Of course, if the Mayans are correct on December 21st, I’ll be the first to admit I was wrong.

How I Got Out Of Mowing The Lawn

So yesterday I’m sitting down in the basement watching a MASH marathon. Something I don’t get to do too often since the show went off the air thirty years ago and is now on television in syndication only rarely.

And before you go and say anything about why I don’t just go and get the complete collection on DVD or streaming it someplace let me spare you the trouble.

Having every episode on some disk sitting around to play whenever I want is NOTHING compared to the euphoria you get when flipping through the channels and finding your favorite show on. Because when it comes my faves, I still get giddy when I turn on the television and there it is. Oh, and I also like the randomness of not knowing which episode it is too. Don’t judge.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes…. So there I was watching Hawkeye and BJ putting shaving cream on Frank Burn’s face for about the five billionth time when in walks my miffed significant other.  I know she can see the happiness in my eyes watching my boys from the four-oh-double-seven.  She is fully aware of my love for the show. I’m eating nachos and enjoying the good life of reliving the Korean War through the eyes of guys named Trapper, Radar and Klinger.  I am in my happy place. She none the less isn’t so amused.

Apparently, there is a jungle growing out in the yard. A runaway lawn has gotten too out of control and must be addressed. For me, such things do not take precedence over watching Klinger dressing like a woman and trying to eat a Jeep to get out of the army.

She had been wanting me to cut it for the longest time. I said I was going to, but that was before I stumbled upon MASH.  She didn’t say a word though. Just stood there. Staring at me.

So after the stare down has gotten to be too much I did something I rarely do. Please forgive me Colonel Potter….

I put the TV on mute.

That’s right, turned off the sound to one of my all time favorite television shows. There was another ten or fifteen second  moment of silence. The tension in the air was so strong you could cut it with a knife.  Then finally, she spoke.

“You know, you are wasting your life away watching a show that you’ve seen a thousand times already…”

Again, more silence.

I slowly took another bite out of my nacho. The beef and cheesy combination only reminded me that I needed to get back to Korea as soon as possible. So after washing it down with some cold beer,  I cleared my throat and responded with the following:

Honey? I did some research. The average person spends approximately 8-10 minutes every day going to the bathroom (both number one and number two). Mind you, the time could increase depending upon many factors such as drunken nights or eating bad Chinese but let’s just use “ten” as a baseline. This includes the act itself and assuming you use proper hygiene methods afterwards. That equates out to more or less an hour a week.

I multiplied that by 52 and got 52 hours for a year. Follow me? Then I multiplied that again by 75 for the years of an average life span. (I didn’t tell her, but I would have subtracted some time for those early years where we all have incontinence issues and Mom and Dad had to take care of hygiene. But I didn’t want to make this issue too complicated).

Finally, I divided this number by 24 for hours in a day.

Do you know what I discovered Sweetheart? The average person spends almost a full half-year of their entire life either taking a leak or dropping a deuce. Yep, each one of us will spend 6 months of our lives locked in the toilet. Amazing isn’t it? What a waste of time (pun intended).

Now I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather spend that time watching MASH then sitting on the pot. Wouldn’t you agree?

Silence.

She shook her head and walked away. I raised my bottle of beer and gave myself a toast. Looks like the grass will have to wait. At least until MASH is over.

Oooh…King Kong Vs. Godzilla is coming on next…sorry Honey!

The McDonaldland Crime Syndicate

Back in the day, if Mom and Dad drove anywhere passed a Mickey D’s you knew darn well a whiny blonde-haired boy in the back seat was going to beg them to make a pit stop.

As a child, I loved going to the Golden Arches. It was like visiting Mr. Rogers or The Fonz only this excursion also included burgers, fries and shakes! I just loved eating there as a wee lad. Much more so then now, as eating that stuff today tends to put weight on me for some unknown reason.

But I have to admit, the thing I loved most about going to McDonald’s in the 1970′s had nothing to do with burger or fry. No, the best thing about going to the place where billions and billions were served was that it was another chance for me to see what my boy Ronald McDonald and his homies were up to.

Ronald sure had the coolest bunch of friends ever – a posse that all lived in their own little McDonaldland. A world filled with talking nuggets, trash cans and trees. A place I only got to visit when my parents grew tired of listening to their bratty kid on the way home from the store.

I still fondly recall trying to collect all of the promotional, lead-laced glasses and plates they’d have. Not because I’d ever utilize such items for eating or drinking mind you. My goal was strictly to have something with the McDonaldland characters on it. The coolest bunch of dudes ever. You know who they are: Ronald McDonald, Grimace, The Professor, Mayor McCheese, Big Mac and Birdie the Early Bird (for all you breakfast lovers out there).

It’s actually been years since we all really hung out together, so on a whim I decided to read up on my old pals to see what they were up to. What I discovered about their past was shocking… and sadly, I don’t think we can be friends anymore.

Has anyone else noticed the evil crime syndicate that was being run out of McDonaldland?

Take a look at these biographies of the characters and you tell me. Fatty fast food is the last thing our children need to be worried about. The truth is, larceny has been running amok in McDonaldland:

Hamburglar – The Hamburglar was a pint-sized burglar who first appeared in March 1971 and was one of the first villains on the commercials. He is dressed in a black-and-white hooped shirt and pants, a red cape, a wide-brimmed hat and red gloves. His primary object of theft was hamburgers.

 

 
Captain Crook – Captain Crook was a pirate who first appeared in July 1970 and is similar in appearance to the famed Captain Hook from Disney’s 1953 movie Peter Pan. Unlike the Hamburglar, this villain spent his time trying to steal Filet-O-Fish sandwiches from citizens of McDonaldland while avoiding being caught.

 

 

 

Fry Guys -They are characters used to promote McDonald’s french fries. When they first appeared in 1972, they were called Gobblins and liked to steal and gobble up the other characters’ french fries.

 

 

Griddler – A short-lived McDonaldland character. He was featured in 2 commercials in 2003 to promote the McGriddles by stealing them from Ronald and his friends.

Even my boy Grimace started out on the wrong side of the tracks:

Grimace - a large, purple character who was first introduced in November 1971 as the “Evil Grimace”. In Grimace’s first two appearances, he was depicted with two pairs of arms with which to steal milkshakes and sodas. “Evil” was soon dropped from Grimace’s moniker, and Grimace was reintroduced in 1972 as one of the good guys.

It seems like almost everyone at McDonalds has taken to a life of crime. And to make matters worse, the only two real “good guys” around: Mayor McCheese and Big Mac (an actual police officer) both disappeared from McDonaldland years ago and haven’t been heard from since. Coincidence?

I don’t know about you, but I’m beginning to question which side Ronald himself is on.

Which makes me wonder how it all began….

Dear Jim Letter

It was a rainy Saturday morning and very apropos if you ask me. I awoke very early to the sound of thunder and could sleep no longer.

As I stumbled down the stairs listening to the rain pound on the rooftop the grumpiness I once had for the Sandman’s lack of personal attention slowly began to subside.

You see, the routine I have every Saturday morning is simple and never changes. I like to sit on my nice comfy couch, drink coffee and read the morning newspaper. My wife and daughter would still be asleep and there’d be no television or phone calls. Just peace and quiet. Caffeine and news print. This was definitely “ME” time.

And the idea that I was awake even earlier than usual only reinforced my joy. I knew that now I’d have even more quiet time alone then usual. So all I could think about was getting the old Keurig fired up, grabbing the newspaper and curling up on the couch. The fact that I could also listen to an early summer rainstorm in the background was a bonus.

The kitchen seemed darker than usual this morning. Natural light had just begun to fill the room and I could see the rain pounding the outside window above the sink. The sound of the refrigerator turning itself on was comforting. But that’s when I noticed something was missing from the nearby family room.

The big comfy couch.

The one that I spend my Saturday mornings reading newspapers and drinking coffee upon was gone. Surprisingly, all of the end tables and lamps were still in their places. Even my beloved 50″ flat screen television that was my portal to Hollywood and grid iron games was still mounted on the wall untouched. Only the couch was gone.

My heart sank as I thought immediately that my home had been robbed overnight. I thought of all the things that would be missing and all of the horrible things that might have been done to my family while we slept.

I reached for the phone to dial the police but noticed a simple white letter lying on the kitchen table. The hand writing on it was one that I didn’t recognize. Too neat to be my daughter and not in the style of my wife.

Something told me to pick it up and read it. The paper was white and crisp and the ink on the page barely dry. I’ll read it to you now verbatim:

Dearest Jim,

I know this isn’t the way it’s supposed to be done. Writing like this. But it’s the only option I have left. I’ve put up with a lot these past few years and I am left with nothing but tears.

Being with you has been wonderful at times. You’ve taught me so much and for that I will always be grateful.

But the time has come to say goodbye. We’re simply not meant to be together.

I’ll always cherish the way you’d leave crumbs from your sandwiches and popcorn lying in my cushions. The long naps we’d take together. The laughs we’d share when you’d “accidentally” break wind on me. But most of all, I’ll remember our Saturdays together.

Sadly though, you have your ways and I have mine. Nothing in the middle seems to make sense.

I do still love you. But the pain that lies beneath the happiness has become more than I can take. We are too good to settle for something that will just never be.

I wish you everything good life has to offer and a happiness that will endure.

Goodbye,

Couch

A tear came to my eye and there was a feeling of emptiness in my heart. I won’t sugar coat it.  I’m the first to admit that I’m not perfect. And I’ve had plenty of relationships end badly before. I can’t remember if I’ve ever received a “Dear Jim” letter before but there is one thing I do know. I’ve never been dumped by a couch. Ever.

As the Keurig finished brewing I took in a deep breath and blew it out. Rain continued to pound on the roof and for a moment I felt like dashing out and finding my beloved. In the end though I realized I had to just let it go and move on.

I dragged a chair from the kitchen table to where the couch used to be and sat down. The coffee didn’t taste as good as it normally does. I only hope this isn’t a sign of the way Saturday mornings were now going to be.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 230 other followers

%d bloggers like this: