Month: March 2004


Clinton versus Bush — an honest opinion

I wanted to get some thoughts out after watching some of Richard Clarke on Hard Ball with Chris Matthews. I’ve been thinking about Clarke and his non-partisan dealings with the media and the 9-11 commission and it got me thinking back to my own political journey. I know I am a progressive and a liberal but I also know I am open to compromise and the option of compromise has been done away with in America for the black and white, yes or no, with us or against us bullshit of the current political system.

In 1992 I wasn’t that politically aware. Of course, I was only 13 at the time and in middle school… I was much more concerned with tight-rolling the ankles of my blue jeans and not appearing like such a dork to the “cool” people around… but nevertheless I was following in my parents footsteps when I was supporting George H. W. Bush for re-election. I thought Bush was a nice guy, didn’t really pay attention to the issues and just knew the vanilla reasoning why democrats were “Bad” from what my parents told me, because they raise taxes. Clinton beat Bush and I was appalled. I didn’t like Clinton one iota, he just seemed wrong… I can remember a girl from my freshman year who got to shake Clinton’s hand when he visited Tampa Bay in 2003 and she described it as the “biggest thrill of” her life. Then there was NAFTA and I could remember publicly laughing during one of his speeches (being shown in my Spanish class, oddly) about how NAFTA was supposed to create more jobs at home.

But time went by and America improved from where it was economically. Jobs came back, crime went down – consistently. I started to respect the guy. 1996 came around and I’d still be a year away from being able to vote but I supported Clinton – especially because he was running against the bland Bob Dole.

And Clinton won… Not only did America progress under his tenure, but it blossomed.

Unfortunately under his tenure there was also a weed that sprouted and it has manifested since. The hatred and slander of politics became a mainstay…. Those on opposing sides of the fence politically didn’t want to work with each other, they didn’t want to compromise – they wanted to obliterate each other and the Republican party was exceptionally good at it.

1994 – big republican gains, 1998 and 1998 saw more and in 1998 Republicans launched an all out attack on Clinton. From what is being said now, some on the right are blaming Clinton for failings versus Terrorism… If the Right isn’t going to acknowledge all the bullshit it brought up against Clinton and how hard they pushed to make a mockery of the man and keep him from doing anything in office because he was surrounded by these threats, then there is no way one should be able to give George W. Bush sympathy for having to be President during 9-11. “Oh, he had 9-11 on his watch. Clinton had jack, right?” :rolleyes

So we get into he polarized partisanship of the 2000 election and Bush comes into power — albeit through means that can be and will be routinely questioned for years to come. Partisanship at the state level in Florida helped Bush’s cause, Partisanship in the Supreme Court helped Bush’s cause. There are many questionable ethics in the 2000 election and I will not bring up much more than the purged voter roles as well as the cluelessness from Kathrine Harris….

Suffice it to say, in short, Bush came in through questionable means.

During the election debacle, I grew sick of the entire ordeal and again in a sense of compromise and non-partisanship, I just wanted Gore to concede and let America get on with life. No one could be that bad as President to keep warring over the vote count like this… Just let it go, AL, just let it go…

Oh how little did I know.

Looking at America in a detached view, 3 years of George W. Bush as President of the United States has not improved this nation. You might sit on the right, on the left, or in the middle – if you look at America without influence of party lines, you should be able to see that America has regressed greatly under Bush. Morally, we are corrupt. The American Government under Bush encourage gluttony and damns conservation – be it fiscal or physical. The Bush Administration will not spend responsibly — taking a huge surplus and turning it into a deficit of monstrous proportions. One can point to 9-11, but there are facts like Bush has never vetoed a spending bill, Bush waged an un-necessary war in Iraq, Bush’s tax cuts took away vital revenue for the Federal Government that helped keep not only the Feds running, but the state governments and the local county governments.

If you question the president – you are attacked. Your patriotism is questioned. You’re prodded by those who are either blindly loyal to the commander in chief or who are willing sheep because they are afraid to get there feet wet in politics. Oh, there are reasons (partisan reasons) to support the Bush administration – their faith based programs and support of removal of the Church and State separation, for example. The fact they remove government restrictions (counter point – which bring forth consequences, environmental, fiscal and social). Tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts and certain other reasons I don’t want to touch with a ten foot pole.

I look at the United States and how it is belittled in the world today, how its no longer thought of as a beacon of light and hope… How men in power will put down and oppress those who oppose them or who do not support them, or who bring into question anything against the president and his staff (hiya, Mr. Rove… )…. This isn’t supposed to be a totalitarian state of facism… This is supposed to be the land of the free and the home of the brave…

Where the United States is now isn’t better off than 4 years ago… If we Bush and his administration had done something to earn my respect and admiration, I would more than willingly show it to them… Yet 4 years of Bush isn’t supposed to be underlined by his one “accomplishment” (9-11) instead of his numerous failings. Those who make the argument that they are better is viewing the world in a partisan light. Their ideologies are better supported under Bush than they were with Clinton. That’s fine, that’s good… That, however, doesn’t help break the partisan stranglehold on America and the warring that is destroying our government and our own voices within it.

The Letterman vs. CNN

I happened to catch Letterman last night, usually I hold out for Conan O”Brian or am busy surfing hte web and chatting when Letterman is on but last night I tuned into Letterman and what happened?

I caught the best opening of the show in years… Not that he’s had bad openings for a few years or something – it’s that it reminded me heavily of Dave’s first couple of years at CBS which I loved. Not only did it have the eccentric (Schick Quattro’s for the entire audience :tongue ) and Rumpert at the Hello Deli, but also the oddities and the warring-with-those-in power in the media. In this case, CNN:

CBS | Late Show with David Letterman : Wahoo Gazette

Last night we showed a clip of the President giving a speech. Behind him stood a lad who was obviously bored silly. The 14-year-old or so yawned, scratched, yawned, yawned, checked his watch, bent over, stared at the ceiling, and then fell asleep during the President’s speech. It was very funny. So funny, in fact, that CNN replayed the clip Tuesday during their broadcasts. But, but, but, the first time is was shown, CNN anchorwoman Daryn Kagan reported that the White House said the clip was a total fake, it was merely the Late Show having fun with their ability to edit and do TV tricks. Dave says what the CNN reporter said was an out and out 100% lie. A couple hours later, CNN anchor person Kyra Phillips reported that the kid was at the speech but not where the Late Show had him. Dave again makes the claim, “That’s an out and out absolute 100% lie. That kid was exactly where we said he was.” It’s true. The speech was at a Florida Rally on March 20th at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Dave is irked that the White House was trying to make him look like a jerk. But he’s glad he got his side of the story out in the open.

Now, I haven’t seen teh video in question and they didn’t replay it (which would have been nice) but it’s stuff like this that reminded me of Letterman making fun of a woman eating a peach at the US Open, or calling out the new President (or was it CEO?) of CBS…. Funny and ballsy — Old Skool Dave…

LaMar's Contract extended and a friends take on MY take….

From Paul who runs Witty Librarian

Just saw this on the Trib’s web site. John, go ahead, I’ll cover my ears

**space provided for John F. to scream a scream of the damned so loud it
would shatter the world**




**additional space provided for John F. to issue a string of profanities that
would impress the hell out of the U.S. Navy**

Motherfucking cocksucking Devil Ray snotty bastards… Christ almighty in a handbasket, these goofy pieces of shit don’t understand crap when it comes to how to hold fuck-ups accountable and they deserve to rot there lice infested carcases in hell for all fucking eternity!!!!

Whew, okay are you done?

Not yet, Paul. Soon. :smile

**additional space provided for John F. to express how he really feels about
the most incompetant baseball general manager in human history, even worse
than the numbnuts who mismanaged the Cubs during the 60s and 70s and 80s and early 90s**

(due to content of this post and overall repetition of ranting about the worst GM in baseball — Charles M. “Chuckles” “Chucky”, “Chuckles the Clown”, “Worthless”, “Lamer” LaMar — over the years, this potion of my rant is kept out :smile )


For now, Paul, yeah… Mostly because you said that no more space was allowed due to the FCC cracking down on salty language :smile

Yes I suck, but I try…

Graphic Manipulation is a bitch…

Just look at my piss poor Worth 1000 entry…..

**sigh** buttons and graphics are one thing but making things look realistic while they are complete fake isn’t.

The Melody and the Music

Someone close to me once told me that a lot of the current music out there makes you want to get up and dance. They were obsessed with Lenny Kravitz at the time (and remembering a song from High School that Lenny was wailing at the time I broke in, I can understand why) and of course I get to deal with Michelle being a music junkie of a friend too but I just can’t grasp the music and these times.


I posted on here a couple of days ago the lyrics to God Only Knows by the Beach Boys. I also have been playing the MP3 repeatedly along with some other stuff by the Beach Boys… It’s a good compliment to the Beatles, I guess, seeing that the music is fine and the lyrics can be clearly heard. The melody carries and you get lost in the lyrics.

“An endless refrain of Na-Na-Na’s” is how I’ve described the Beatles (Hey, Jude) and to describe the Beach Boys, it would be something outside of that but the same emphasis on the melody to go along with the music (“Mmmbop-bop,” perchance? Sounds like I am talking about Hanson but I’m just trying to give you a clue that I am talking about some of the backing vocals on Good Vibrations). You hear the name and you start thinking of surf music and I hate that. But even THAT had an emphasis on the melody. The problem was that it was vanilla flavored music.

So I’m thinking a lot about what I like and then I am thinking about what I get to see from music today — I don’t see a lot of innovation, I don’t see a lot of melody. I see a lot of performing and I see a lot of jamming but to find a pop song that is by an original artist, has a good tune, a backing melody… It just seems like it’s not going to happen. That’s my ignorance being re-introduced to sound after years of silence. I won’t totally grasp everything I hear but I know I can enjoy some of it.

One thing I know I like is a clear and concise lyric to a song – and a lyric that isn’t covered with slang in order to add grit to the song. I was reading a thread on Skyscraperpage about favorite lyrics and some of the shit posted is…. well, shit! ” Nigga’ ” “Fuck” “Bitch” — they’re all key words in some of what’s popular with young people today and it’s like these kids never heard MUSIC before… I mean something that blows them away. Something where they can see a couple of layers of music in the music and enjoy the song for what it possesses…. The MELODY, not going-through-the-motions singing. Not a beat box driving a song.

I might be praising songs for being clear but it’s not like I respect the canned-singers that are all voice and nothing else. I’m not a fan of American Idol-like pop where you just sing and have someone else write lyrics for you and someone else perform the backing music for you. Part of the reason I have such an affinity for the Beatles is because they did everything on there own. Brian Wilson was and is one of the Beach Boys and did a hell of a lot on his own but also had help here and there… So they are in the same area. U2 does it on there own. Nirvana did it on there own… But then again, Nirvana played loud and hard. U2 has one clear vocalist…

Good music in general makes you want to get up and dance, get up and sing… SO most of my opinions are worth shit because I’ve had every single type of music want to make me sing and dance… But I know my oldies are easier to touch and appreciate because of there ingenuity and their inventiveness… You can’t find musical inventiveness like this any more and if you can, I haven’t been made aware of it.

Losers with nothing better to do….

How pathetic?

A little troll with the IP address posts about 1000 times under an entry in this blog to tell me I’m “Gay” and that my “mama is gay”.

To whoever has this intelligence deficit — thanks for your comments and showing how pathetic both you and your high school are…. I mean, you posted 30 times in about 5 minutes? Boy you must be bored. You also must be pretty insecure or pathetic (how about both) if you have to post stupid shit to try to slander another high school…

Just wondering, did you even attempt to read the post you were replying to? Or were you just responding to the title because you couldn’t understand the big words I used? :rolleyes

The Death of a DVD Player

I’ve alluded before on Der Stonegauge that I was an early adopter of the DVD format. In 1998 I had the money to blow so I went out and got a player before the format even took a firm hold on society. Over the years, my Panasonic DVD-A105 has shown hundreds of hours of DVD video in high quality without a ton of bells and whistles like some of the new models that come out. It isn’t a progressive scan DVD player, it doesn’t have digital zoom, or a hard drive or whatever… it’s just a solid machine that has gone the distance time and again.

I bought Star Wars original trilogy (pirates :p) on DVD when the problems really started with my player. I attempted to play each movie and I had “digital breakdowns”, so to speak. I had been noticing the machine acting funny lately besides that (even though I clean it regularly) and just giving a few more problems than normal…

Well, Star Wars seemingly did a number on the machine. I tried playing Gladiator last night and what happened was… well, I couldn’t get past certain chapters due to digital breakdown on a clean DVD along with several messages telling me I had no disc in the machine while I did.

I bought condensed air to clean my machine, I ran my DVD laser cleaner, I tried running those DVDs again and the same problems came up. The machine would lock up while having the tough time reading the discs and end up ejecting the DVD from the machine or just plain turning off.

Sadly, I knew that my 5+ year old Panasonic is on it’s last legs…

I started looking at new players today seriously with regards to replacing my machine… And as I was sitting down to write this entry, my brother dumped a new Toshiba. Personally I would have preferred to find my own system but… Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, ya know?

Oldies stuck in my head

I have had two songs stuck in my head in recent days — well, more than in just recent days, they’ve been with me for years on and off at times and I couldn’t identify either of them. One was a Top-40 song that I had heard on the he radio in the early 1990’s and another is a song I cannot identify in anything more than where I heard the notes for the song…. Something from the 1980’s that features a piano or an xylophone or something that sounds like one at least…

Well, out of these two songs, I found one of them and dang it, I’m happy… Shanice,. “I Love Your Smile”

Curiously strong…. breath strips??

Nice, Altoid’s now offers breath-strips much like my fave Listerine Cool Mint breath strips…

Whattaya say?

I came across someone I had been searching for over the last seven years on just now… Someone i used to have a mad crush on and someone I was too scared to admit I was interested in.

But that was 10th grade and High School… A long long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Or seven miles and almost 10 years.

At any rate, it got me to thinking about what you would say to someone you haven’t seen in such a long time? What would you talk about with them? Would you just come clean about things that happened last time you talked? Or old problems that might have been left unsolved between you?

Or would you start fresh like the three examples below?

“Hi, how’s it going?”
“Nice shoes, wanna fuck?”
“Excuse me, you look so familiar and I was wondering if you could tell me if this dress makes my ass look big?”

I came across this girl’s aunt online in 1999 and I had the opportunity to get in touch with her but passed on it. Why? Fear in part, and also because I didn’t want to rear my head back into her life while she certainly has a life of her own that I am not even a thought in. Time passes and things fade away — but memories and feelings aren’t so easily pushed into oblivion. I’m not planning on paying Classmates in order to get in touch with the girl for the same reasons… My interest is piqued though, for the moment.

Edit to Entry: Better question than the WHATTAYA SAY — How would you react if someone from High School suddenly dropped in on your life? SOmeone you ahven’t spoken to since then…?

The Fundrace

The thing that sucks the most about living in Palm Harbor is not the fact that this neighborhood is “the boonies” when it comes to having my friends come over (it’s far removed from Tampa, St. Pete and other areas, or so it seems) but the fact that I am living amid Republican Hell. I can see it in the local politics but I can also see it with Fundrace 2004. Half of the entires posted were backing George W. Bush while the other half was backing Howard Dean.

I don’t know how often this thing is updated and I am not listed even though I have made a few contributions to a candidate thus far… But interesting none the less

Van Helsing = Van Marketing

I haven’t been much of a fan of Universal the last few years. They’ve had some good movies but they tend to be a little, shall we say, over-occupied with franchise building… The same can be said with every major studio right now (Fox – X-Men, Warner Brothers – The Matrix, Sony – Spider-Man, New Line – Lord of the Rings… the list goes on for each studio too) but I feel like Universal tries a little too hard to get into the niche and — well? Overkill.

Van Helsing is a great example of trying-too-hard.

The movie hasn’t even come out yet (which features Universal giants/film character legends of horror in Dracula, Frankenstein, etc) and Universal has not only a sequel lined up but also spin offs and a TV Show… They are planing for Van Helsing to be huge when it is released and from some fanboy buzz I have seen on the web – it will be.

Maybe this is just me being cynical and wishing ill on something I am not very fond of? Last movie that I heard huge money rumblings about before the films ever were made as the “Lord of the Rings” films — and of course I love those now. Maybe Van Helsing is going to be able to do the same thing in the long run (Kate Beckinsdale doesn’t hurt either)?

But, then again? What if the overly-CGI and over-the-top action in the movie and a mixed up plot goes and leads the majority of Americans to stay away? “What happened?” will be what is uttered most on the Universal lot but the truth is we know just what happened — they gave in to marketing before they made a movie worth seeing.

Happy Birthday to You…

White House staff organize surprise party for President to mark one-year anniversary of Iraq War |

Washington — White House staffers arranged a well-deserved surprise party for President Bush today, in honor of the one-year anniversary of the Iraq War. Invited guests arrived at the White House in secret, and shocked the President with cheers of “Happy Anniversary” in the normally quiet and reserved Roosevelt Room.

Wonder if they did an honorary reading of “The Hungry Little Caterpillar” to make George a happy boy?

Respect for him from 9-11 or disdain for the other 3 years on the job?

I was reading about global protests from yesterday’s 1 year anniversary of War in Iraq and, while reading a local article on local protests of the war, came across this gem of a quote that absolutely infuriated me with it’s ignorance:

“Man, did I ever come to the park at the wrong time,” said St. Petersburg resident Carole Hall.

Refuge Ministries’ Rev. Bruce Wright, 42, caught up with Hall as she walked away from the rally. After asking reporters not to talk to her because the media favors her point of view, Wright and Hall engaged in a heated conversation.

“The man has done a tremendous job,” Hall, 62, said of President Bush. “If only they would remember 9/11.”

It’s ignorance like this that really pisses me off when it comes to Americans support for George W. Bush. His administration is nothing when 9-11 isn’t considered and after 9-11? He has been nothing less than terrible. Lets look at the facts of the Bush administration for a moment, just a few bare facts: Hedismissed Richard Clarke’s assertion that there was an imminent terrorist threat and it should be taken seriously (the very cause of 9-11), he has attacked another nation on false pretense (I grew up when Saddam posed a REAL threat to the Middle East back in the late 80’s and early 1990’s), left numerous world treatieslead to their deaths hundreds of United States Armed Service Men and Women (and maimed thousands more) due to the false pretense of war, not to mention the “collateral damage” deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001), made the world a more hazardous place to live due to environmental laws that promote pollution, and of course how can we forget the corporate terrorism that has been in place since Bush came into power? Enron? Tyco? MCI Woldcom? The RIAA?

Not to mention the economy and the lack of attention to the nation.

So, I am supposed to forgive all of this? Should every American dismiss all of the above (and so much more) and simply look at George W. Bush for how he handled 9-11? Are you insane, Carole Hall, or are you just living in a bubble like so many people in America? :rolleyes

Note to Internet Chatters

You CANNOT hold a conversation by having “Hi”, “N/M J/C” and “Hello?!!” as your entire vocabulary online. If you can’t hold a conversation or won’t try to talk to someone, you are better off either in a chat room or just offline, period.

The Theory

You ever realize how much more likely it is for a person to come online and treat others like total shit and act like assholes? You get it on message boards, you get it on web sites, you get it in journals, you get it in chat room, you get it from web cams and the like — I’ve seen it all…

Gabe and Tycho posted another strip up that displays just what I am talking about.. Simple and straight forwards and scarily accurate.

I’ve heard from my female friends old and new about guys and how they wills tart off conversations with women on here — and it just surprises the hell out of me but like the cartoon says, the anonymity gives a great reason to try it — you can get away with it and might even get lucky with some kinky conversation.

And I’ve experienced it first hand with a few who are more, shall we say, sexually open who follow the “Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory” to a T.

The Internet Fuckwad – it’s what America is doing online.

At least I was honest

Tuesday, my mom breaks the news to me that my brother Andrew’s dog had a litter of 3 puppies the night before.

I was sort of taken aback by this news — I didn’t know the sexes of Andy’s dogs to begin with, I didn’t know one of the dogs had become pregnant and I had no idea in hell that one of these dogs had given birth.

“So, his dogs have been screwing, huh?” was my immediate response… It earned me a blank stared and a gasped-like chuckle that lasted for several minutes…

When you don’t know the full story, folks, stick with the facts you do know… :smile

Iraq War and the War for America


Web protest of the 1 year anniversary of the Bush Invasion of Iraq

I’m planning on posting a graphic on the site on 3-20-04 to protest the one year anniversary of the Invasion of Iraq along with the Bush administration in general…

I’m also looking for more people to join me with this cause. Drop me a note if you are willing to post this thing on your own journal online … I don’t think I can start a movement here but I at least ought to try…

Monorail or sky gondola??

The city of Clearwater has plans on being a vital part of Pinellas County’s (flawed) Monorail plan that is on the Metropolitan Planning Organization’s drawing board. The monorail would run into downtown and then across Clearwater Harbor and arrive at Clearwater Beach as an alternate mode of transportation.

Overkill. Over costly and not a sure fire way to bring in tourists or re-vitalize downtown.

I came across a thread on Skyskraperpage that talked about Sky Gondola’s that will connect Detroit with Windsor, Ontario and I thought that it was a perfect mode of transit for a link between Clearwater and Clearwater Beach. Why? First off, it would be a surefire tourist attraction among those who are out-of-state visitors along with drawing the curious from in and around the Bay area. Secondly, it is a much less costly mode of transit than a monorail between the two land masses.

Another part of why I like this idea is because you can really obtain a better termination point for the Gondola because the station would not have to take up a lot of land (I think?). I would think that a terminal close to the main strip of the beach (and much closer than the termination point / terminus of the Monorail system) and the main drag would be a possibility. Depositing people in the heart of the area would be outstanding instead of letting people get lost trying to find attractions.

Of course, the biggest positive of this idea is getting people out of cars and onto their feet. Pedestrians are much more manageable than cars and a ton of traffic. Plus, if you are going to the beach to begin with, don’t you want to get out in the sun?

It’s an interesting concept and a viable one at that…. The question is, will Clearwater even consider looking into this (I wrote the City Counsel and Mayor a letter with regards to this)? My guess is no, but you never know….

When you think about it…

…couldn’t the blind lead the Jedi order??

Just a thought… :wink

Melody and Regret

A couple of days ago, I was flipping around the tube and came across a Beach Boys biopic I had originally seen when I was younger, called Summer Dreams, which I got lucky enough to turn on just as the British Invasion was beginning (1964).

I got to come across Brian Wilson’s anxiety and his musical genius that I had been aware of from quotes but hadn’t thought of much besides what I had heard and liked as a child — which is odd because some of the music is much more complex an innovative than the Beatles stuff and I had never given it a second thought (example: The introduction to California Girls).

I’ve had a song in my head since I watched the movie and I would love to be able to provide streaming audio of the music to share with everyone because of how beautiful the song can be — but alas, until I figure out how to do that, i can only share with you the lyrics. It’s a stirring and haunting melody with harmonies in multiple layers…. It was part of the Pet Sound album (which George Martin claimed, “If it wasn’t for Pet Sounds, there would be no Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band)…

Now, ladies and gentlemen, this is the song I haven’t been able to get out of my head — or stop pulling at my heart (as was the case with Dennis Wilson in Summer Dreams

God Only Knows

I may not always love you
But long as there are stars above you
You never need to doubt it
I’ll make you so sure about it

God only knows what I’d be without you

If you should ever leave me
Though life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I’d be without you

God only knows what I’d be without you

If you should ever leave me
Well life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows what I’d be without you
God only knows
God only knows what I’d be without you

Painful to watch, pleasure to have seen

There was a movie I rented before I went in for surgery in August — and it’s also a movie I put off watching… And continued to put off watching after someone told me that they had seen it and it made a profound statement to them.

It’s not because the movie made a difference, it’s because other things and such. Pay no heed to my whining, lets go back to the movie that I am talking about, and that is Michael Moore’s Bowling For Columbine which just about everyone has seen or has heard of and has an opinion about.

Part of the reason I put off watching it was because I felt like shit at the time. Won’t go into the rest of it. Moore’s film brought up a statement or two that I totally agree with. One is a statement that a cartoon tried to underline and another is a statement that Marilyn Manson – Home I am no fan of – made to Moore. There were also plenty of other things (Matt Stone’s thoughts about high school – how I only came to realize that a year after I got out of High School… That’s just one example) but these two statements that were made were what sold the movie to me most.

The first statement I will re-convey is Manson’s statement that we are a nation driven by consumption and fear. Our fear drives our consumption and our consumption is what drives our fear. You see a nation that is over-weight and yet you see commercials telling you to drink beer to get laid. Cause – effect. You see commercials telling you how to act and how many teens and young adults are terrorized because they are not the actors with the polished skin in these commercials? How many are driven to buy products slung by these actors in commercials because they think it will help them fit in?

Goes for smoking too — Peer pressure? Sure… Image conscious is peer-pressure to another degree – the desire to fit in. To be cool. To be popular…

The second statement that made the largest effect on me was a statement Manson already made but a Cartoon illustrated best – we are a nation driven by fear. We’re afraid the big black man walking down the street is going to get us. We’re afraid that if we don’t stop the government from taking our money, they will just blow it on crack-whore welfare and pork barrels, we’re afraid that if we don’t bomb the living hell out of a country, they’ll bomb the living hell out of us. The fear drives us, the fear catapults us to acting without thinking, acting in retaliation before there is anything to retaliate about.

Are we a country with an inferiority complex or insecurity complex?

Bowling for Columbine doesn’t offer us solutions to our problems – it just look sat our problems… That itself might be part of the problem… If we have no framework of the alternative to what we know, there is no reason to look at an alternative. Of course, the alternative to owning a gun is to go with out – scratch one. Then there is the idea of having to have a license and knowledge of how to handle a fire arm to own one… The NRA would never go for that (even though the only thing it is doing is making sure gun owners are EDUCATED). Scratch two.

More of the same is the other alternative that comes to mind and hope society changes it’s ways. Ha! Like that will happen? Scratch three. :sad

To continue the Gluttony trend of stories…

McDonald’s Salad Has More Fat Than Cheeseburger

LONDON (Reuters) – Global hamburger giant McDonald’s latest line in healthy looking salads may contain more fat than its hamburgers, according to the company’s Web Site.

McDonald’s, plagued by health critics and flattening sales, has launched the biggest change to its menu in 30 years with its plans to get into the multi-million pound prepared salad market.

“You can choose your salad, topping and dressing. You can mix and match to suit your diet and lifestyle,” said a McDonald’s spokeswoman.

However, consumers hoping to lose weight by switching from burgers to salads may be disappointed, according to the Interactive Nutrition Counter on the McDonald’s Web site.

For example, on the new menu to be launched at the end of this month, a “Caesar salad with Chicken Premiere” contains 18.4 grams of fat compared with 11.5 grams of fat in a standard cheeseburger.

The British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) told Reuters it welcomed the salad menu but warned that salad dressings bought in fast-food outlets or supermarkets could be very high in fat and calories.

BNF said the recommended daily fat intake for men is 95 grams per day and for women 70 grams per day.

Good thing I avoid McDonalds — that shit just ain’t healthy… For ANYONE

Oh so patiently

Mr. Postman, look and see — a couple of packages, packages for me….

I got word Monday morning that my little bundle of joy is going to be returned to me this week. Yes after more than a month I will get my Playstation 2 back. *a warm and contented sigh is issued by John*.

Meanwhile, I also blew a wad of cash on 3 DVD’s — 3 special DVD’s because they are non Special Edition DVD’s. Yes they are PIRATED DVD’s but they are special none-the-less because HAN SHOOTS FIRST! What the hell am I talking about? The original Star Wars Trilogy on DVD which I bought off Ebay. Yes, the Special Edition/ official release of films will be on DVD this fall but I didn’t care for the Special Editions to begin with.

Han shoots first and no girlie screams when Luke and the Emperor fall to their respected dooms. *a warm and contented sigh is issued by John*


This just leads to one major question

Obesity, it is being reported everywhere, is fast approaching smoking as the #1 killer among Americans.

I’ve already gone off on this topic and my views on it, but seriously folks, with this “epidemic” going way out of control…

Where the fuck is Jane Fonda and her god damned workout tapes?!?

America needs you Jane! Get off your flabby ass and save us!!! :smile j/k

"Screen" Gems

I was hanging around the house yesterday morning when I got a call — which is a rare event because I NEVER get a call. Especially a TDD call. So after the initial freak out and such I finally got my bearings and found out it was Mark from SkyscraperPage. I alluded to some things on here months ago but I never really described them — well, until now.

Mark and me have been friends on the SkyscraperPage forum for a while – we knew each other but we didn’t really KNOW each other until I got real depressed after my operation in August. (one link but a bunch of stories on the subject in the past). I had been real down over a few things going on at the time and had talked about that stuff on SSP. I started finding relief by writing in here and Mark, a fellow writer, had been started chiming in on the forum after I made mention of the writing. We got to talking and I found out he was a screenwriter and a bit more. He was interested in my story after some private communications and we’ve been talking a bit about me and some story ideas since then.

Well, Mark had also told me he’d be in the Bay area in March of 2004 and at the time of the call — Mark was here :smile. We set up a little encounter this afternoon and I just rambled for him some points about myself and what I have gone through. Anecdotes and what not from my life and about who I am. We were doing this over coffee at a new place I discovered not too too far from my house. Looks really cool and I am hoping to be able to hang out with a few of my friends there in the future.

Anyway, back to the story. I told him of a few things – like giving him some details I could remember from the Beatles Lyrics incident, some anecdotes from childhood and growing up, moving down to Clearwater and such. It was fun to ramble like that but sorta awkward too. You couldn’t imagine a story about dear old John appearing in film, could you?

Didn’t think so :wink.

When I am out west next time (not sure when) I need to meet up with him again to keep going over things and just build. He’s got a ton of notes to work with and research if he wants. H also has a ton of work to do as is :tongue. Patience, John, Patience….

King Gimp

Oh, the life of a walker-bound sports fan…

Last night me, Michelle, her brother Geoff and one of Geoff’s friends attend the Lightning vs. Devils game at Times Palace. The game itself was a bore for the most part but the company was real good.

What sucked was getting to and from the arena.

I haven’t walked through a cityscape with this walker and my first experience with that was last night – it’s tough folks. It’s even tougher getting into an arena without knowing the access points for cripples and gimps… No offense intended towards the disabled.

And leaving the building? Don’t get me started…

Even the fans are in Spring Training — in understanding baseball

Keith: Rain?
Keith: First fucking baseball game of the year, and it has to Rain in Florida?
Keith: bah! A Pox on the state of greyhairs!
John F.: rain?
John F.: are you serious?
John F.: it’s sunny here
John F.: was it yesterday? It was sunny THEN too
Keith: ESPN has all games in a rain delay
Keith: Or, they are testing their “R” key out
John F.: R stands for RUNS
John F.: LMAO
Keith: (blush)
Keith: fuck
* Keith goes back to bed

Can it be…?

Stranger things have happened but after a couple of years of silence I think I just heard from someone I knew on here….

Where have you gone, "In Living Color" cult???

The ultimate skit comedy show that ever aired — outside of the opening seasons of Saturday Night Live — was Keenan Ivory Waynes groundbreaking and hilarious In Living Color which aired on Fox on Sunday if I do recall when it first started out. I was in 5th grade at the time and it was a show quickly banned in my home because of some mature comedy but damnit – the early stuff was classic!

The reason I am going off on In Living Color like this is because I started searching for episode transcripts and translations after thinking about the “Men On Film” segment and their reviews of films… (especially “A Few Good Men” ) I used Google and a bunch of times came up with nil. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Bupkus and such. The few sites that I did find were Jim Carrey shrines (that’s right, kids, Jim Carrey got his big break doing his crazy shit on television — though he had been in a couple of movies that didn’t take before his In Living Color role) or just filed with text tiles of the skits that aired in each episode… not the actual content of the episodes.

Homey the Clown is a cult hero and should be enshrined as so much on the Internet, which is a home to the tacky and humorous. Fire Marshall Bill should be compared and contrasted to George W. Bush (though I don’t think “Lemme…. show ya somethin’!” compares with certain Bushisms… Fire Marshall Bill’s saying was a lot more catchy :smile ) and of course– “Men On Film” and the cast of Blaine Edwards and Antoine Merriwether, should be displayed as the guys who started the Homosexual cultural revolution in America (ok, they were stereotypes and extremely effeminate and therefore actually impairing our perception of homosexuals as butts of jokes, but they were too damn funny to shun their… uh, preferences?). Lets give a giant two-snaps-up-and-booty-twirl to Men On Film! (which was re-spawned for one skit on Saturday Night Live as Chris Farley joined Damon Waynes Blaine Edwards and David Alan Grier made an impromptu appearance as Antoine Merriwether to resurrect the In Living Color — the only ILC skit to air on SNL).

Jamie Foxx, Shawn Waynes, Jim Carrey, Damon Waynes, Jennifer Lopez… This show really started these guys down the career path (yes, Damon was on SNL and had been in movies before this show. Yes Keenan had been a director before this show, yes J-Lo didn’t become a star until after this show, but the point is this show helped them all on their way). It’d due some respect… It’s a conspiracy, I tell you! C-O-N…. spiracy, my broth-a!

It’s time to embrace the kings of early 1990’s comedy. It’s time to embrace In Living Color… For you can do what you wanna’ do In Living Color. :biggrin

Return receipt — It’s alive! ALIVE!!!

Found! My Precious is FOUND!!!

Yes, kiddies, Johnny is a happy camper right now not so much because the Lightning eeked out a win last night in Chicago, not because it’s a bright and glorious day outside.

Nope. None of those things matter.

What does Matter is that I got a return receipt from Sony with regards to my Playstation 2! It (finally) arrived at one of their Service Centers on Monday. Now, if the machine gets repaired and returned to me is another story, but I am happy as a clam to know that the machine isn’t lost in the mail like I had worried.

My Understanding of Truth… Ok, HIS Understanding of Truth

My Understanding Of Truth
By John M. Chambers*

“I will show you fear in a handful of dust.” – T.S. “BUTCH” ELIOT

“My first thought was, he lied in every word.” – ROBERT “SUNDANCE” BROWNING

The gunslinger is the truth.
Roland is the truth.
The Prisoner is the truth.
The Lady of Shadows is the truth.
The Prisoner and the Lady are married. That is the truth.
The Waystation is the truth.
The Speaking Demon is the truth.
We went under the mountains and that is the truth.
There were monsters under the mountain. That is the truth.
One of them had an Amoco gas pump between his legs and was pretending it was his penis. That is the truth.
Roland let me die. That is the truth.
I still love him.
That is the truth.

When is a door not a door? When it’s a jar, and that is the truth.
Blaine is the truth.
Blaine is the truth.
What has four wheels and flies? A garbage truck, and that is the truth.
Blaine is the truth.
You have to watch Blaine all the time, Blaine is a pain, and that is the truth.
I’m pretty sure that Blaine is dangerous, and that is the truth.
What is black and white and red all over? A blushing zebra, and that is the truth.
Blaine is the truth.
I want to go back and that is the truth.
I have to go back and that is the truth.
I’ll go crazy if I don’t go back and that is the truth.
I can’t go home again unless I find a stone a rose a door and that is the truth.
Choo-choo, and that is the truth.
Choo-choo. Choo-choo.
Choo-choo. Choo-choo. Choo-choo.
Choo-choo. Choo-choo. Choo-choo. Choo-choo.
I am afraid. That is the truth.

*from Stephen King’s “The Wastelands”, part of the Dark Tower saga

Choo Choo and all that jazz… Ya gotta love this 😀

Knights of the Old Republic

Well, what happened with Johnny when he lost his Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Playstation 2?

He started playing with his Christmas presents…

I had received to different computer games to bide my time with at Christmas but I hadn’t installed them until mid January and barely played the first one. The second one was Sim City 4 and that was fun but it gets old fast.

So I went back to the first game I got / installed — Star Wars, Knights of the Old Republic

This game is usually heralded by gamers for it’s challenges and it’s depth, and I have to agree with that. I am not a hardcore gamer, nor will I ever know the depth and versatility of Video Games like, say, Gabe and Tycho over at Penny Arcade… But for me, Knights of the Old Republic was truly a fun game and a challenge… And personally? Thinking of the story line (well, there are several alternate story-lines, mind you, but for the sake of the argument – the one that has the main character a Jedi Knight and not a Sith Lord) could very well serve as a movie… No, not another one tied to the destiny of the original or prequel Star Wars trilogies…. A new movie with a stress on PREQUEL – no ties to the movies you know besides Sith Lords, Jedi Knights and Tatoonie.

I won’t publish any tips or hints here (how can I? I suck :p but I will guide any KOTOR gamers who are stuck to Gamebanshee… They were my savior at certain points in this game and I am looking forward to playing it again sometime in the future — just not yet. Not yet indeed.

Oh, one thing that sorta bummed me out at the end — the hero doesn’t get the girl! It ends up sorta like the end of the original Star Wars movie with a medal ceremony… And yet there is this small buildup of a relationship between one character and another and at the end — nothing happens! No kiss, no hug, no admittance of feelings… Nothing! Nada! Zip! Zero! Zilch! Ugh, how unforfilling! Oh well, it’s only a computer game…..

All right, I admit it, I am coming out about it….

I think… uh… I might be straight, everyone.

I know this comes as a shock to you all but it’s more shocking to me than any of you. I don’t know how I will live with myself – being drawn to the opposite sex and all that….

I think I might be straight flyer from the Gator Gay-Straight Alliance.

(thanks to for this hilarious and entertaining flyer — this is not a bigoted post, just humor. No offense is intended and… well, shit… If you’re offended, lighten up)

Get a better Page(r) on things…

Let’s see how much of an entry I can write through my pager, shall we?

Oh, I’m not posting this through my pager but I am writing it on my pager, and then sending it to my email account and THEN copying it, pasting it, and posting it on Der Stonegauge.

As if I’d have nothing better to do with my time? :tongue

So here we are on Wednesday, I have an eye appointment in a little bit, seems my eye is infected and that is screwing up the works. But first and foremost? LUNCH…. Well, seeing it’s 2PM maybe this should be called something else? You know, sorta like “Snack time” like you had in Elementary School.

I’m heading to my first Lightning game of the season on Friday with Michelle. I would have gone sooner but I’m a gimp and climbing the risers would be tough. Michelle’s been bored out of her mind lately and her boyfriend is working so — good company and great hockey is what will be going on Friday.

“Not a date, definately not a date.” Vincent Vega, Pulp Fiction