Friday, December 28, 2007

Andy Rooney

I got this in an email from my cousin. Roughly translated: this is probably already made the rounds and I'm the last one to hear of it. But this is the kind of talk that needs to happen on a regular basis. Hard talk. Telling it like it is. I may not agree with every aspect of what Rooney is saying, but I really appreciate that someone is willing to travel crossways across the grain. In particular, I like his views on the hypocrisy of reverse racism. Whites in America have become docile house pets. We watch the Mind of Mencia, laughing until our drink comes out the nose holes while he flips white people the bird. As I've said, that's all well and good, but have the cojones to take a little of your own medicine. Not gonna happen. Not in this lifetime.

Here it is:

I don't think being a minority makes you a victim of anything except numbers.. The only things I can think of that are truly discriminatory are things like the United Negro College Fund, Jet Magazine, Black Entertainment Television, and Miss Black America. Try to have things like the United Caucasian College Fund, Cloud Magazine, White Entertainment Television, or Miss White America; and see what happens...Jesse Jackson will be knocking down your door.

Guns do not make you a killer. I think killing makes you a killer. You can kill someone with a baseball bat or a car, but no one is trying to ban you from driving to the ball game .

I believe they are called the Boy Scouts for a reason, which is why there are no girls allowed. Girls belong in the Girl Scouts! ARE YOU LISTENING MARTHA BURKE ?

I think that if you feel homosexuality is wrong, it is not a phobia, it is an

I have the right 'NOT' to be tolerant of others because they are different, weird, or tick me off.

When 70% of the people who get arrested are black, in cities where 70% of the population is black, that is not racial profiling; it is the Law of Probability.

I believe that if you are selling me a milkshake, a pack of cigarettes, a newspaper or a hotel room, you must do it in English! As a matter of fact, if you want to be an American citizen, you should have to speak English!

My father and grandfather didn't die in vain so you can leave the countries you were born in to come over and disrespect ours.

I think the police should have every right to shoot you if you threaten them after they tell you to stop. If you can't understand the word 'freeze' or 'stop' in English, see the above lines.

I don't think just because you were not born in this country, you are qualified for any special loan programs, government sponsored bank loans or tax breaks, etc., so you can open a hotel, coffee shop, trinket store, or any other business.

We did not go to the aid of certain foreign countries and risk our lives in wars to defend their freedoms, so that decades later they could come over here and tell us our constitution is a living document; and open to their interpretations.

I don't hate the rich, I don't pity the poor.

I know pro wrestling is fake, but so are movies and television. That doesn't stop you from watching them.

I think Bill Gates has every right to keep every penny he made and continue to make more. If it ticks you off, go and invent the next operating system that's better, and put your name on the building.

It doesn't take a whole village to raise a child right, but it does take a parent to stand up to the kid; and smack their little behinds when necessary, and say 'NO!'

I think tattoos and piercing are fine if you want them, but please don't pretend they are a political statement. And, please, stay home until that new lip ring heals. I don't want to look at your ugly infected mouth as you serve me French fries!

I am sick of 'Political Correctness.'

I know a lot of black people, and not a single one of them was born in Africa ; so how can they be 'African-Americans'? Besides, Africa is a continent. I don't go around saying I am a European-American because my great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather was fromEurope . I am proud to be from America and nowhere else.

And if you don't like my point of view, tough...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Yoko Reference Was My Own

Just a quick note to say, that in my previous post, I referred to Jessica Simpson as Yoko Ono, the notorious femme fatale credited with breaking up the Beatles. Well, as it turns out, that reference was made by at least one other Cowboys blogger the day before.

In the interest of deflecting any plagiaristic accusations, I came up with that on my own. After the game, I didn't read about the game, stayed away from the blogs and sports shows, so I had no outside influences. Not that anyone would notice or care. This isn't a football blog, and nobody but Bailey comes here to read about the Cowboys (but I'm glad she does!).

And as they say in Mexico, hay no comparison!

As it turns out, hating on Jessica Simpson has become a sport after the collapse of the Cowboys versus the Eagles. In light of that, I retract my comment. At least in my case, it was a total joke--but an original one, and one that didn't require a whole lot of imagination.

It's easy to blame the presence of a woman. Not just any woman, mind you. Simpson is to hot what a blazing super nova is to a lighted match. I get it. But if Tony Romo is incapable of playing football from here on out because his sexual diving rod is pointed true north, then don't blame Jessica Simpson. You might as well blame it on Rio. It's the player that needs to step it up, and he will. Just hopefully this year.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Oh the Weather outside is Frightful

Our driveway is a solid sheet of black ice, and there was a run on the local hardware store. Think Jimmy Stewart in It's a Wonderful Life. Instead of a bank and a pathetic stack of money, it was Aubuchon Hardware and a palette of salt. I bought the last four bags and thought I would fight my way back to the truck.

We are low on food. Oh sure, we have boxes of Mac & Cheese, microwave popcorn, pb&j and lots of bread. But nothing to eat. Yesterday we decided to lump it. Wait out the storm; let the sun come out and set us free. We were good with that. Good that is until the television blinked out.

First my uniform: snow pants, winter coat, Elmer Fudd hat with macho ear flaps, Darth Vader gloves. Last bag of salt, next-to-last bag of sand, show blower, shovel--the works. Half hour later, wipers thumping, freezing rain, we're slogging our way to New Hampshire. Ice storm or no we are not paying taxes for a major purchase. Costco. Philips forty-two inch plasma flat-screen. Just enough room on the credit card. McDonalds drive-thru. Home again. Will it fit in the entertainment center? I measure, cross-check the width as reported on the box. No—Khaaaaan! Wait, that's the box width, not the unit. The reality? One inch to spare. I hook it up.

Sweet Lord! Football has transformed into a wide screen religious experience.

Half time already. Dallas down seven-three to the Eagles. Romo not playing like himself. Already with two interceptions. Wait! Is that Jessica Simpson in the stands? I holler, "Yoko!"

Game over—oh well. It's only one game. Hey, we're twelve and two. Nothing to sneeze at. Move on. I'm over it.

But I do think about deleting my last two football posts.

Friday, December 14, 2007


I've haven't been writing much, not here on my blog, not even on my novel that is dying a slow death. I'm not giving up, but that is the truth of it. I used to blog almost every day, and the confidence it gave me was energizing. Without it, I'm losing my flare. The words that come to mind are empty, repetitive and boring. So I need to back in gear. It has been suggested to me in the past that if I put so much energy into my blog that I would burn out for the real thing. I think I might have bought into that in a small way.

Anyway, I happened upon a contest that one of my fellow bloggers is having, and in the absence of any motivation whatsoever to do work yesterday afternoon, I applied myself to submitting an entry.

I've always wanted to write a western. You may or may not know that my avatar is a picture of the great Wyatt Earp. I love country music, or at least I used to. It's changed, and that's just the way it goes. When my dad complained about it, I didn't listen, so I won't expect any sympathy. But it's not the same anymore. You may have read somewhere that my favorite team is the Cowboys. Coincidence? I think not.

I don't watch westerns and I don't read them, except for Lonesome Dove, which is a masterpiece of literature by Larry McMurtry. I make no lofty claims to be near as talented, but one has to start somewhere.

Here's hoping I don't fall off the wagon again. It's time to get back to the routine of writing every day, whether it is here or elsewhere.

So thanks Bernita for having this contest. And I hope to see that Jason has some more in the near future.

Here is my entry:


Bobby snatched his pistol from his right hip holster and started into his pivot—

Crunch, head jerked forward, ringing like a gong.

Dog tired.

"Whoa. It weren't that hard," a gruff voice said. A tug on his gun hand. "Now gimme that." The loss jarred Bobby awake. The Colt. His daddy's Colt.

"That there was a love tap t'get yer attention." Cole spiked the shovel into the dirt a hairs breadth from the tip of Bobby's boot. "Now dig."

"You gonna do for me like you did my daddy?" Bobby rubbed the back of his head. Bone dry.

"You ain't never had no sense, Bobby."

"So you sayin' it ain't so?"

"I said dig."


Cole trained the Colt on Bobby's forehead and thumbed back the hammer. "This thing loaded?"

Eyes locked on Cole's, Bobby snatched the shovel and heeled it into the soft earth. "Six feet I reckon?"

The sun turned orange and dipped over the horizon. Bobby looked up in the failing light, neck-deep now in the hole. Cole's face stared down, aglow from the tip of a cigarette.

"The Beaton boys hung your daddy from that branch right there." Cole pointed.

"That's a damned lie. It was you kilt him--for the stolen bank money! "

"No, but they did. Do I look like a rich man?"

Bobby's shovel bit into ground with a hollow thunk.

"He died so's when his boy become a man he'd have the chance his daddy never had."

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Happy Birthday, Jackson

Today is your eighth birthday, Jackson. You don't know that I'm writing this, and you may not know it for years to come. But I want you to know how proud I am, and what has meant to me to be your father.

After you were born, your mother and I bought our very first house to make the best possible home for you. It was brand new, the walls flawlessly white. The one bit of color, and the only color it would get for the first four years was your room. Like the only ornament on a tree. We bought the best of everything: a crib, a rocker, shelves, changing table and dresser, stroller, car seat, Baby Bjorn, even a fancy country-style backpack that we only used once. Everything had to be perfect.

Your mother had a stack of books she read tirelessly, insisting that I read them too. Of course I didn't, because I am just a guy after all. I went to all the classes though. Lamaze. Even one on breast feeding. I saw some videos that still wake me up in the middle of the night.

There is nothing in the world that can prepare a couple for a new born baby. When you first came out, you were like a little alien that looked just like my grandpa. It wasn't real, and yet it was all too real. We had no idea what to do.

The nurse swaddled you in a blanket so that only your little scrunched-up face stuck out. You barely weighed more than a feather. I could hold you in the palm of my hand. And I did, quite often, just for the fun of it. I never let you out of my sight. When the nurses took you to the nursery, I followed right behind in case they tried to switch you out for another.

Despite the fact that we had spent so much time on your new room, you slept with mommy and daddy for the first year. We had read and heard accounts of what kind of trouble we had created for ourselves, that you would never sleep in your own bed. But when we finally did put you in your crib, you didn't mind at all. Lesson in life: don't believe what you read. Parents are just kids with deeper voices. The good ones do what's best for their kids.

I read to you every night, and thank God I did. Now you love books almost as much as you love video games, just like your dad.

Once I sat the video camera up on a tripod and filmed my advice to you in case I was killed in a car accident. I drew a total blank. Feeling embarrassed, I rewound and taped over it. Too bad. You would have seen how inarticulate I can truly be. Hard to believe, I know. It's one thing to know who you are inside, and another to put it into words with such confidence as to inspire the same in someone else.

When I look at you, I see a lot of myself. All the good things and none of the bad. We all have insecurities, and I have plenty. The advantage you have in this life is a mom and dad that will always look out for you. We won't yell or hit or belittle, and when we make mistakes we will apologize. That's a world apart from how we were raised. Instead of passing the buck, the buck stops with us. You will always have the advantage that our undivided attention will afford.

Mere words cannot express the ocean depths of my feelings toward you. When I see you smile your real, ungoverned smile, and hear the musical lilt of your laughter, it lights the darkest of darkest days. You are my son. You are the best part of me. You are the future, and it is my foremost purpose to make yours the best that it can be.

Happy Birthday, Jackson.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I don't think this works

I found this on Bailey's blog. There is a tool that rates the readability of your blog. Here is the results of checking mine:

I don't think it works though. I ran a check of some of my blog buddies and got a lot of elementary levels back, which is clearly not the case. Jaye at Jayes Blag though, scores very high, College Undergrad. That one does make sense.

I added the Library Thing to my sidebar. I'm in a deep-reading phase, taking notes and paying special attention to descriptive passages. It's amazing how difficult it is to describe how one walks from one end of the yard to the other. So I'm taking notes.

Vive los vaqueros.

The demise of the New England Patriots has been greatly exaggerated. So too the dominance of the Cowboys. Still, 12 and 1 and counting. A win is a win. And a come-from-behind victory with two minutes on the clock is the stuff of legend.

** Update **

In response to Beth's comment about the Colts: they definitely have a chance. More than a good chance, a great chance to go all the way. I'm overstating my confidence level in the Cowboys, by the way. Eight parts confidence, two parts wishful thinking. They have a long road to the Superbowl. Green Bay is not a gimme game just because we beat them once. Seattle is coming on strong, and the Giants aren't going to roll over and play dead either. In the AFC, I seriously doubt the Steelers are scaring anyone after getting humiliated by New England, but the Jags aren't to be overlooked. When the Colts are in the playoffs, they'll have Marvin Harrison back but will have swapped for Dwight Freeney. Regardless, nobody in New England will honestly be able to profess confidence when those two teams meet again.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Work, Kids and Football

I have finally submitted something to my employer that showcases everything I am capable of doing given enough time. In case some of you are wondering, I have been working on a web page that employs some of the latest and greatest technologies. It's nothing you as the general public can browse to and see. Though it is a web page, it is also an internal application bought and paid for by customers of my company. It's pretty cool just the same. The stuff I'm doing now is the next evolution in web page development. It's a damn good thing I'm on top of it. I have to be if I want to stay in the business.

As I was bringing my coffee upstairs, I took a moment to glance at my two kids sitting on the couch together. Emmett adores his older brother, Jackson. They were sharing a blanket. Jackson had turned off the television after a half-hour (twenty minutes on TiVo—sans commercials) of Ben-10, and was playing Nintendogs on the DS. I could tell by the sound of dogs barking. There is a feature of the game that displays a record player—you know, a phonograph record, 33 RPMs. The kids have mastered the art of using the stylus to drag the needle to the record, pressing the "record" button and making silly noises until the needle reaches the smooth middle. Then they laugh—no, they crack up—at the grunts, screams and fart noises they have left behind.

Hours of quality entertainment.

As I saw their two heads pressed together, faces alight from the glow of the screen, I gave myself a mental pat on the back. They will always have each other, long after I am gone.

My football team has quietly advanced to an eleven and one record. If it weren't for the raging success of the New England Patriots, our ascension would have attracted a lot more attention. This is the best time to be a fan of a football team, after years of rebuilding and frustration, to be a witness to the magic before the world knows what is about to happen.

The Dallas Cowboys are going to win the Superbowl this year. I can feel it. The Patriots are fading down the stretch while the Cowboys are getting better each week. Our defense is getting ferocious. New stars are blooming on each side of the ball. Bill Parcells built this team, but it took Wade Phillips and Jason Garrett to take advantage of the considerable talent Bill had collected.

If you love another team, I understand that you either don't or won't believe. Feel free to tell me so. But come February, in Tempe, Arizona, allow me to say that I told you so.