The Cynics Workshop

Where I can try to influence the world, one word at a time.

The Hess Truck is back

What year do you think the Hess Truck made its debut in? Don’t stress too much, the answer is below. In what has certainly become a much more enjoyable holiday tradition that anything Mariah Carey will participate in…the mighty Hess Truck is back! I was inspired to write this post purely because of that incredibly annoying jingle that goes along with the commercials. You know the one I’m talking about…’the Hess truck’s back and it’s better than ever’…I’m going to stop there. Other than contributing to your other annoyances for the day by implanting that song in your head (would you rather I sang Afternoon Delight from the Starland Vocal Band), I want to spend a little time on the arrogance contained in that above sentence. The arrogance lies in asserting that every Hess truck that comes out is not only better than any other Hess truck that has come out, but that it is the best Hess truck…ever. Ever is a big word, the Oxford English Dictionary defines it as not only ‘the phrase for ever written as one word’, but as ‘eternity, perpetuity’. Now you probably didn’t need me to break that down for you to the level that I did but in addition to being thorough, I wanted to to drill down the point of arrogance. There’s no way these people are selling that bunk to me, there’s no way that every new Hess truck that’s come out is better than every previous Hess truck…the proof, look back to 1964 to the first ever Hess truck.

That first every truck was a replica of the Hess company’s first B61 Mack truck and trailer, complete with working head and tail lights, as well as a cargo tank that could actually be filled and emptied. It even came with batteries, which is more than I can say for most of Santa’s toys. The man at the helm of Hess, Leon Hess, wanted a cheap and practical toy that kids could have for Christmas which is how/why the truck was introduced. Other than the nostalgia factor, take a look at the craftsmanship of objects made back in those days and compare it with the absolute shit that is rolled off assembly lines now…you’re telling me that 2020 ambulance and mini rescue vehicle can top the original? Not a chance. Look at 2009, they made an Indy car. in 2004 they made what looks like OJ’s white Bronco along with 2 motorcycles, in 1993 they made a pathetic replica of Smokey’s police car. I dare you to make an argument that any one of those could top that first truck…or any of the replica trucks they would make proceed to make up until the early 1980’s. Hell they even threw in a tanker ship in 1966…those God damn creative geniuses…I wish I could shake their hands.

That’s the problem when the heirs start taking over these corporations…

So not only did the designs start to take a turn for the worse around the early/mid 1980’s, but that is coincidently the time when the marketing team decided to get creative in how they market the trucks. It was then that they came up with the theme song that basically said to to those legends from the ’60’s and ’70’s…hey, you think you did some good work back then, nope. Now take a look at the new Hess truck, it’s the best one we’ve ever done…and sadly that arrogance would continue. Well reality check time, no, it’s not the best one you’ve ever done…and it never will be. Go back to your roots and give me back the old 1964 B61 Mack truck and trailer with a fillable cargo tank, and workable head and tail lights. Ditch the crap theme song and while your at it, why don’t you throw in a mini replica of Leon Hess along with the truck…it’s the least you could do.

Lynyrd Skynyrd, there’s a story there…

I read this morning that there was recently a bill passed in the state of Mississippi that places road signs along a remote stretch of Mississippi highway directing people to a site where on a dark and cold October night in 1977 was the spot of a plane crash where the lives of 6 people were taken, 4 of which were affiliated with the band Lynyrd Skynyrd, and 2 of which were the pilot and co-pilot of the plane that was flying them to their next gig.

Now in and of itself the placement of road signs along a Mississippi highway alone may not be enough in your eyes for a full story…but it is in mine. Forget for a moment that I am a huge fan of the band. Their beyond successful rock hymn, Free Bird, is in my humble opinion a top 5 song in the history or rock and roll, and their countless other songs which touch people with a simple yet infectious 3 guitar sound that has had them gaining fans even after that tragedy that rocked the world of rock.

The band had a taste of fame and was getting more and more of it when the accident took all that away. Among the victims was the lead singer, Ronnie Van Zant, lead guitarist Steve Gaines, his sister and back up vocalist Cassie Gaines along with assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, not to mention the pilot and co-pilot. The crash site is in a rural area of Southwest Mississippi, absent of cell service, and it is visited by many of their fans each year.

The real story lies in the driving force behind the reason this bill was passed in the first place, Representative Beckie Currie of Mississippi. In late October, 1977, Beckie was a student nurse at a hospital in Mississippi when there was a plane crash. As several badly hurt people were rushed to the hospital, Beckie and the rest of the hospital staff worked throughout the night to try to help the victims, having no idea the victims were members of a successful rock band.

Forget the fact that story of the band is grounds enough for a story, throw in the fact that one of the nurses who helped take care of the victims eventually becomes a State Representative, helps pass a bill allowing for road signs thus making it easier for their many fans to make a pilgrimage to their crash site and that’s a movie right there. I’m not sure how many of my loyal followers are in the movie industry…but I would be happy to talk royalties with you for the rights for development of this movie.

The song Free Bird begins with the line – ‘If I leave here tomorrow, would you still remember me?’. Ronnie Van Zant asked the question, and the world answered with a resounding yes.

My Phone is Smarter than I am

So it’s official, my phone is now smarter than I am. Well let me clarify, my phone has probably been smarter than me for a while, I am just now coming to grips with it. Today is Veteran’s Day and last night before I went to bed, I got an alert on my phone asking me if I wanted to adjust my daily alarm since tomorrow was a holiday. If it were a person, I would say that was a nice gesture, but since it came from my phone…I don’t like it.

It’s common knowledge that we all rely on our phones more than we should, and now they are starting to take advantage of that by trying to think for us, which in the grand scheme of life is not good. Everywhere you look it says that we are getting smarter, that are IQ’s are increasing…but have a conversation with a few people and you might be inclined to disagree with that (as I do). At the very least even though technically we might be getting smarter, the reality is we are also getting lazier.

I was in the store the other day and I gave my address so the cashier could apply my discount card for me and she asked where I lived so I told her it was right up the street, so close that I could walk to the store. She smiled and said that she has lived in her house for over 30 years and when someone asks her about a street in her neighborhood, she sometimes isn’t sure where it is. My response to her was that is a typical situation, the fact that we now have GPS on our phones (and in our cars), we don’t have to think anymore about where we are going. We simply plug in the address, and then just listen as we are told where to turn and where to go. We don’t have to think anymore and what is the consequence of that…we don’t learn, we don’t grow, and we don’t move forward. Maybe it’s because I’m a nerd who used to read the atlas when I was younger…yes, I used to sit on the couch and read the Rand McNally Road Atlas that my father kept in a side end table in our den. We took a road trip this summer and I actually pre-planned out our route by looking at the atlas as opposed to relying on GPS to tell me where to go. It was partly for fun, partly for necessity as I wanted to avoid major cities. It was actually kind of refreshing…I knew ahead of time what road I was going to take and where on our journey it was. I knew when we were going to enter a new state and how long we would be in that state.

Cheers to Steve Jobs, he built a great company, he built devices that we can’t live without, but the problem with that is that he built devices we can’t live without. Have you ever left the house without your phone? Ever seen the level of anxiety that will create in people? Read the countless studies that have been done about how people’s blood pressure will actually go up a bit when they hear their phone ding or buzz…it’s crazy. More people now get their daily news from their phone than from a major news network. I think my grandfather would turn over in his grave if he heard that. The amount and the speed at which we have access to information is too much for the average person to absorb. The average person isn’t smart enough to know what to do with having access to that much information at that fast a rate. The proof in that statement is around the spread of information, or mis-information, surrounding our political landscape. I won’t go farther into that as that is enough for a post of its own.

The point is that we all need to unplug, we all need to put our phones down and engage in the real world more. Your mission is to use your phone to read this post, use your phone to comment, use your phone to subscribe, use your phone to text your friends and tell them to read this, comment on it, and subscribe to it…then put your stupid phone down and go out in the real world. Get outside and get some fresh air.

Am I back?

I want to write again. I might write again, I think I might write again. It’s been a few weeks, ok a few years, since I last wrote but I miss it. My biggest problem now is finding the time to write, but I need to. I have Facebook now (*insert ashamed and disappointed sigh now), but the one good thing that comes form that is…material!! One could get years of good material from one mindless session of scrolling through. We have the COVID, that might be the source of one or two posts. We have an electric political scene…not sure how much I want to touch this.

I have some work to do…I hope I don’t let myself down.

…a few inspirational words from Holly Butcher

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted, hopefully I still have a few (of my only few total) readers left out there.  It’s not been for lack of something to say but rather the time in which to write down and say it.  There has been a lot going on in the World, Mother Nature’s wrath and fury (and a bit of beauty if we choose to focus on the bright side), a bit of man bashing (*cough cough, go easy on us ladies), and a Wildman/genius in that famous house that is white and that happened to be built by slaves.  I have many thoughts/issues/suggestions to share on all those topics but alas it is finding the time to pen them that is my one true issue in life.

I did however come across something very special this morning and I had no choice but to pass it on.  Holly Butcher was a 27 year old woman from New South Wales, Australia who lost her battle with a very rare form of cancer on January 4, 2018.  She spent the last few days of her life putting some inspirational words down and they were posted to facebook the day before she passed.  Since I don’t have facebook, I decided to share her words here.  She is spot on in everything she says and will add her to my list of people that I would like to meet one day…just not one day soon. 🙂

Enjoy:

A bit of life advice from Hol:

It’s a strange thing to realise and accept your mortality at 26 years young. It’s just one of those things you ignore. The days tick by and you just expect they will keep on coming; Until the unexpected happens. I always imagined myself growing old, wrinkled and grey- most likely caused by the beautiful family (lots of kiddies) I planned on building with the love of my life. I want that so bad it hurts.

That’s the thing about life; It is fragile, precious and unpredictable and each day is a gift, not a given right.

I’m 27 now. I don’t want to go. I love my life. I am happy.. I owe that to my loved ones. But the control is out of my hands.

I haven’t started this ‘note before I die’ so that death is feared – I like the fact that we are mostly ignorant to it’s inevitability.. Except when I want to talk about it and it is treated like a ‘taboo’ topic that will never happen to any of us.. That’s been a bit tough. I just want people to stop worrying so much about the small, meaningless stresses in life and try to remember that we all have the same fate after it all so do what you can to make your time feel worthy and great, minus the bullshit.

I have dropped lots of my thoughts below as I have had a lot of time to ponder life these last few months. Of course it’s the middle of the night when these random things pop in my head most!

Those times you are whinging about ridiculous things (something I have noticed so much these past few months), just think about someone who is really facing a problem. Be grateful for your minor issue and get over it. It’s okay to acknowledge that something is annoying but try not to carry on about it and negatively effect other people’s days.

Once you do that, get out there and take a freaking big breath of that fresh Aussie air deep in your lungs, look at how blue the sky is and how green the trees are; It is so beautiful. Think how lucky you are to be able to do just that – breathe.

You might have got caught in bad traffic today, or had a bad sleep because your beautiful babies kept you awake, or your hairdresser cut your hair too short. Your new fake nails might have got a chip, your boobs are too small, or you have cellulite on your arse and your belly is wobbling.

Let all that shit go.. I swear you will not be thinking of those things when it is your turn to go. It is all SO insignificant when you look at life as a whole. I’m watching my body waste away right before my eyes with nothing I can do about it and all I wish for now is that I could have just one more Birthday or Christmas with my family, or just one more day with my partner and dog. Just one more.

I hear people complaining about how terrible work is or about how hard it is to exercise – Be grateful you are physically able to. Work and exercise may seem like such trivial things … until your body doesn’t allow you to do either of them.

I tried to live a healthy life, in fact, that was probably my major passion. Appreciate your good health and functioning body- even if it isn’t your ideal size. Look after it and embrace how amazing it is. Move it and nourish it with fresh food. Don’t obsess over it.

Remember there are more aspects to good health than the physical body.. work just as hard on finding your mental, emotional and spiritual happiness too. That way you might realise just how insignificant and unimportant having this stupidly portrayed perfect social media body really is.. While on this topic, delete any account that pops up on your news feeds that gives you any sense of feeling shit about yourself. Friend or not.. Be ruthless for your own well-being.

Be grateful for each day you don’t have pain and even the days where you are unwell with man flu, a sore back or a sprained ankle, accept it is shit but be thankful it isn’t life threatening and will go away.

Whinge less, people! .. And help each other more.

Give, give, give. It is true that you gain more happiness doing things for others than doing them for yourself. I wish I did this more. Since I have been sick, I have met the most incredibly giving and kind people and been the receiver of the most thoughtful and loving words and support from my family, friends and strangers; More than I could I ever give in return. I will never forget this and will be forever grateful to all of these people.

It is a weird thing having money to spend at the end.. when you’re dying. It’s not a time you go out and buy material things that you usually would, like a new dress. It makes you think how silly it is that we think it is worth spending so much money on new clothes and ‘things’ in our lives.

Buy your friend something kind instead of another dress, beauty product or jewellery for that next wedding. 1. No-one cares if you wear the same thing twice 2. It feels good. Take them out for a meal, or better yet, cook them a meal. Shout their coffee. Give/ buy them a plant, a massage or a candle and tell them you love them when you give it to them.

Value other people’s time. Don’t keep them waiting because you are shit at being on time. Get ready earlier if you are one of those people and appreciate that your friends want to share their time with you, not sit by themselves, waiting on a mate. You will gain respect too! Amen sister.

This year, our family agreed to do no presents and despite the tree looking rather sad and empty (I nearly cracked Christmas Eve!), it was so nice because people didn’t have the pressure of shopping and the effort went into writing a nice card for each other. Plus imagine my family trying to buy me a present knowing they would probably end up with it themselves.. strange! It might seem lame but those cards mean more to me than any impulse purchase could. Mind you, it was also easier to do in our house because we had no little kiddies there. Anyway, moral of the story- presents are not needed for a meaningful Christmas. Moving on.

Use your money on experiences.. Or at least don’t miss out on experiences because you spent all your money on material shit.

Put in the effort to do that day trip to the beach you keep putting off. Dip your feet in the water and dig your toes in the sand. Wet your face with salt water.

Get amongst nature.

Try just enjoying and being in moments rather than capturing them through the screen of your phone. Life isn’t meant to be lived through a screen nor is it about getting the perfect photo.. enjoy the bloody moment, people! Stop trying to capture it for everyone else.

Random rhetorical question. Are those several hours you spend doing your hair and make up each day or to go out for one night really worth it? I’ve never understood this about females 🤔.

Get up early sometimes and listen to the birds while you watch the beautiful colours the sun makes as it rises.

Listen to music.. really listen. Music is therapy. Old is best.

Cuddle your dog. Far out, I will miss that.

Talk to your friends. Put down your phone. Are they doing okay?

Travel if it’s your desire, don’t if it’s not.

Work to live, don’t live to work.

Seriously, do what makes your heart feel happy.

Eat the cake. Zero guilt.

Say no to things you really don’t want to do.

Don’t feel pressured to do what other people might think is a fulfilling life.. you might want a mediocre life and that is so okay.

Tell your loved ones you love them every time you get the chance and love them with everything you have.

Also, remember if something is making you miserable, you do have the power to change it – in work or love or whatever it may be. Have the guts to change. You don’t know how much time you’ve got on this earth so don’t waste it being miserable. I know that is said all the time but it couldn’t be more true.

Anyway, that’s just this one young gals life advice. Take it or leave it, I don’t mind!

Oh and one last thing, if you can, do a good deed for humanity (and myself) and start regularly donating blood. It will make you feel good with the added bonus of saving lives. I feel like it is something that is so overlooked considering every donation can save 3 lives! That is a massive impact each person can have and the process really is so simple.

Blood donation (more bags than I could keep up with counting) helped keep me alive for an extra year – a year I will be forever grateful that I got to spend it here on Earth with my family, friends and dog. A year I had some of the greatest times of my life.

..’Til we meet again.

Hol

Xoxo

The Re-naming of Columbus Day

Today as many American’s are given the opportunity to sleep in a little later and enjoy a matinee due to the celebration of a mass murderer, more cities and states are slowing beginning to come around to the idea of re-naming this day to something along the lines of ‘Indigenous Peoples Day’, which of course would shift the focus from the murderer to the murdered. 

Today Vermont joins a growing list of states, and Denver & Phoenix join the list of cities which are choosing to join my movement and cease to honor someone who’s hero status was rammed down our throats as children.  The fact that we have been forced to honor this man, this villain, this murderer for years has sickened me to no end.  It is a relief that more and more people are coming to the realization that it is quite impossible to discover a land that is already inhabited by people.  By shifting the focus onto the poor people that Chris murdered represents a small moment of growth for the collective consciousness of the World.  These pre-21st century Trayvon Martin’s were simply minding their own business (metaphorically walking down the street), when all of a sudden (over the course of several weeks), Chris and his gang arrived on their turf (land), and brought violence and disease (violence and disease), and enslaved the natives before raping and murdering them all so the European’s (the same idiots who voted to leave the European Union) could trade slaves (thus showing a trend of European’s making stupid decisions for literally hundred’ of years in a row…remember these are the same people who said the Beatles were good).

I applaud Vermont for joining my movement and making this change.  By no means though does this provide a reason to visit Vermont, it is still arguably one of the most boring states we have, but by taking this step to move even farther out on the liberal curve, they do gain a measure of coolness.  If only they could figure out a way to inject alcohol into their maple syrup…then we will have something.  They join states like Alaska, which adopted Indigenous Peoples Day in 2015, and Hawaii, which has long celebrated Discovers’ Day as states that have been enlightened.  I’m glad to finally see a state that actually makes sense why it is a state adopt this change.  Don’t get me wrong, Alaska and Hawaii are great states, they just have no business actually being U.S. states.  The country of Spain is also considering not only abolishing Columbus Day as a holiday, but they are taking it one step further and are also exploring (no pun intended) removing the paid holiday status and treating October 12th like any other day.  The only thing I really care that Spain continue to do is export first class talent like Antonio Banderas and that dog who worked for taco bell a few years ago, but if they can help take my movement national, then I’ll look at eating more paella.

As with every good movement, there are always dissenters (i.e. idiots).  For the second year in a row, the fine people Oklahoma City have rejected this movement, quite surprising considering Ok city is home to the second largest population of Native Americans.  I guess memories, just like long lost relatives, are hard to find there.  But given that Ok city is so far from anything of any substance, or anything really, it is understandable that the movement take some time to reach them.  We must remember that the ultimate goal here is erase Columbus, just like Kim Kardashian, from the history books.  Both people have brought nothing but pain and heartache and have no reason to be studied.

With every day that passes, every year that fades into the history books, we move one step closer to righting this wrong.  And no we will never be able to bring these people back, or any people really, but by making this change (as well as by adopting Arbor Day as a national holiday), we will continue to move in the right direction.  So get off your computer, go write your local congressman, tell them to get off their asses and off their computers and do something, but more to the point tell them to join the movement, abolish Columbus Day like he abolished my early relatives.  He showed no regard for their lives, so it is only fair that we show no regard for the many statues we have of him across ‘Merica.

Now for God sakes people, go plant a tree!

 

The Running of the Bulls

Or as I like to call it, The Running of the Idiots!  Just the other day in Pamplona, Spain, we had our annual gathering of the dumbest people in the World and not surprisingly some of these future garbage men and their stories are starting to surface.

We’ll start with the idiot from San Diego who had a bull tear a gash into his leg while he was running with his new friend.  While being interviewed in the hospital he said it was his first and last running of the bulls because “it’s dangerous and you are putting your life at risk.”  There must be a future in business for this budding superstar because he is obviously a genius.  Please, please tell me this moron didn’t actually have to fly to Spain, run next to a 1 ton bull, have his leg torn open, then have time to reflect on the experience while laying in the hospital to actually come to the conclusion that it’s dangerous because if that’s the case then future America and future World are in trouble.

Now let’s shift to the professional…the Matador.  Ah, the bravest of the brave.  Want to be a firefighter and run into a burning building to save a stranger?  Nope, not brave enough.  Want to be a police officer and put your life at risk every day to save a World that probably doesn’t deserve saving?  Nope, not brave enough.  Want to stand in an arena with a bull and let him run at you?  Yes, where do I sign up?  Well for one young man he probably should have chosen to be a firefighter.  For the first time since the 80’s a Matador was killed by a bull.  Not only that, but it also happened on live television.  There is another tradition in Spain that says when a Matador is killed, it is customary to not only kill the bull but also the bull’s mother in an effort to end the bloodline in the hopes that this doesn’t happen again.  I would actually argue that instead of killing the bull or it’s mother, you should actually kill the mother of the Matador for giving birth to an idiot.

It makes absolutely no sense to me at all that you would kill a bull for following its instinct and charging at the red cape that is being waved in its face, and it makes even less sense to me that you should kill its mother.  The fault lies in one place and with one person, and in this case that person is already dead.  What happened to this Matador can be summed up in two words – Natural Selection.  The moment you step into an arena and get in the way of a charging bull, all bets are off…you deserve whatever fate awaits you.  There are people who are in favor of ending the entire tradition of running with the bulls but I am actually a proponent of the opposite, I think we should open it up to more people.  Think of the prison costs we could save if we shipped a few hundred convicts out and told them to try to outrun the bulls.  Or even better, instead of orange jumpsuits, put them in the arena with red jumpsuits and then sent a few bulls in.  How many people would hold up a liquor store if they knew that fate awaited them?

Now don’t view me as completely insensitive, I’m just pretty much almost completely insensitive.  It is a little bit sad that this Matador died, he was only 29, he was married, and his wife was cute.  It is sad that he died, but only a little sad…I can’t get away from the fact that he knew the dangers, he wanted the fame and therefore was willing to accept the risk…the only problem was that this time the risk won.  Instead of getting the fame and fortune, he got a horn through his lung and heart. ..on live tv.  This event should be televised on live television across the Country, we need to encourage more of our disjointed youth to want to go participate.  Pamplona is a small town, it is just East of that one town and just South of that other town but with more exposure we could build this town up, tourism could be huge.  Now granted most of the tourists won’t stay for long but no one wants tourists to stay long, we want them to come for a few days, spend money, then g.t.f.o.

We now have a living witness though, a 23 year old aspiring garbage man from San Diego who thanks to the grace of God is on his way home with not only a huge bandage coving almost his entire leg, but a story.  A story of a man, and a bull, and a leisurely jog, and then a sprint, and then an all out run for your life, and then pain, and then confusion, then pain, then blacking out, then a hospital, then a cute nurse, then a mean old nurse, then an unsympathetic doctor, then time to reflect, then a news team with a camera, and then national fame…and what could be better than that?  So go home young man, appear on local morning talk shows and tell your story, go hang out a bars and tell your story, go to assisted living facilities and tell your story, but most importantly…tell your story, and get others to go so they can have stories of their own.  I will help you by also telling your story, and I will continue to wear my old slightly faded red t-shirt that has a picture of a bull on it, and written under the bull is the name of a town, a small town that we will build up, we will build it up with the help of you and other idiots like you.

Viva la Bulls!

What’s Not to Love About the Hamptons?

As New York City began its rise into the defacto capital of the United States, people who lived and worked there needed a place to blow off steam and to flaunt their wealth, thus the birth of The Hamptons. On a small section land approximately 3 hours East of New York City you will find a society few get to really experience to its fullest, a society filled with money, privilege, fame, and beauty to name a few. A society that due to its exclusive clientele, has relished their secrets and thrived in a somewhat incestual society that has been unwelcome to outsiders and anyone not wearing a polo shirt and khaki pants along with white shoes sans socks. Well now there is one more class of people we can add to the list that The Hamptons wants to keep out…kids with Down Syndrome.

The Westhampton Beach School District made headlines this morning when it became public that they are attempting to keep 12 year old Aiden Killoran from entering their school this fall due to the fact that he has down syndrome. Christian Killoran has said that he wants his son to attend the same middle school as his friends and his siblings but the school district refuses to let Aiden in. In a move that I applaud, Christian is planning to show up on the first day of school even though the district has said they will not let his son in. Shades of Alabama circa 1963 anyone?? I think we all know how that ended. Apparently folks out East are kinda slow learners.

The district is saying that they “don’t have the programming to teach Aiden”, and so instead of getting or developing such programming they are telling the family to go to another school. They kind of have a point, I mean why would a school want to develop programming to actually teach kids? It’s way more fun to shove the problem off on someone else for them to deal with. Leave no child behind! In a letter written by Suzanne Mensch (who is the president of the Westhampton Beach Board of Education), she wrote that she was “extremely disheartened by the Killoran family’s repeated public efforts to bully the Westhampton Beach School District into developing an educational program for their son” and also later said that “as a parent I continue to be disappointed in the Killoran’s unwillingness to be completely honest about their situation.” I wonder what situation she is referring to, could it perhaps be the situation where a parent has a child and they are looking to get the best possible education for their child? Could it be the situation where a parent is looking to have their child go to a school where most of the child’s friends will be attending? Could it be the situation where a parent wants to try to send the message to their child that they are no different than any other student? What message are you referring to Suzanne? Please elaborate. I can’t believe she is a parent and actually said that.

Little Aiden has already beaten the system once when he became the first student with down syndrome to graduate from his elementary school, so why not give him a shot at middle school. Anyone who knows me knows that I have a soft spot in my heart for kids with down syndrome and if you read my post Tim’s Place about a restaurant in New Mexico that was opened and currently run by a man with down syndrome, then you know that people who have down syndrome are capable of doing incredible things when they put their minds to it, and when they are supported by their family and their community.

As I read that article today on ABC News’ website, I couldn’t believe what I was reading. I can’t see anything other than plain discrimination in this and for the school district to go so far as to apply for a restraining order to block a kid from going to school is completely appalling to me. We have fallen so far as a society I sometimes wonder if it is even possible for us to recover. The lengths and measures that some people will go to in an effort to make a point continues to amaze me. It’s sad that again a child will be placed in the middle of bureaucrats and their bull shit yet again. Why the school wouldn’t want to admit Aiden, teach him and see him graduate, then make positive headlines for successfully teaching and graduating their first ever down syndrome student baffles me. Probably because to admit him and to develop that program would cost the taxpayers a little extra money. The taxpayers of arguably one of the most affluent towns on both Long Island but also in the U.S. mind you.

So I ask you, what’s not to love about The Hamptons?

No Title

People really over complicate things.  People talk about how complex things are, how life is so hard, there’s so much to do and not enough time to do it.  I think you just need to simplify your life.  Remember, it’s complicated because you made it so.  Imagine how easy things would be if we all followed the following:

“I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.”

It’s so simple, it really is.  Just think about the people who do follow those words…

The day in headlines

Today I find myself surfing NBC News’ website and can’t resist sharing some of their ‘can’t resist clicking’ headlines.

Glow-in-the-Dark Tampons Track Sewage in Rivers – you can’t make this stuff up, I’d dare you to even try.

Bieber Skewered at Roast Featuring N-Word, 9/11 Gag – I’m sorry, I didn’t get the memo that we should still be talking about Justin Bieber.  Or to quote Ozzy…”who the fuck is Justin Bieber”…well said Ozzy, well said.

Teens Who ‘Sip’ Alcohol as Kids More Apt to Binge: Study – does this mean kids shouldn’t sip, they should full on drink?  Also, why add the word ‘study’?  Does it lend more credibility if I think it is a study versus an actual article?

What Does California Need More Than Rain? – Hmmm…less immigrants?  lower taxes?  less stupid celebrities and reality people?  more wineries?  less stupid celebrities and reality people?  a football team?  another football team?  upgraded infrastructure?  less stupid celebrities and reality people?  legalized marijuana?  oh well, I tried.

Woman Stabs Boyfriend for Eating Too Much Salsa: Cops – come on…really?  If it was her salsa then she might have a legitimate claim here…especially if he took her Tostitos too.

Drought Restrictions Take Toll on California’s Pools – wait a minute here, hold everything.  This could actually be a real crisis.  Are you saying that all the celebrities and stupid reality people can’t fill their pools?  No.  Noooooo.  Noooooooooooooooooo!!!  We have to do something.  Everyone randomly look up one person in California (I will take Jeff Lewis, because I love Jeff Lewis that’s why) and immediately send them one bottle of water so we can help these poor people be able to go swimming.

Woman, 70, Fatally Shot After Answering Front Door: Police – well that will teach her.  Seems pretty cut and dry to me.

Coyote Wanders onto Bar Rooftop in Queens – yea, so?

Italy is Running Out of Pizza Makers – Fuck California, this is a real crisis.  Unless you live in California, no one even wants that state associated with the rest of the U.S.  It’s no big secret that we can’t wait til the big earthquake that completely separates California and makes it its own island.  But who doesn’t like pizza, come on…

Obama Urges Congress to Follow Ted Kennedy’s Example – which example is that, the one where you kill someone and completely get away with it?  Everyone knows Congress is more screwed up than those real housewives on Bravo, but when Ted Kennedy is the moral compass you are compared too…then that is taking it to a whole new level.  Full disclosure, I love Ted Kennedy.

Liberia Urges Ebola Survivors to Stop Having Sex – it’s probably a good idea for everyone in Liberia to stop having sex, regardless of whether or not you’ve had Ebola.

Is It OK to Eat Moldy Food? – Similar to the vaccinations debate, I’m gonna go ahead and leave this one up to you to decide for yourself.  My philosophy is if you want to eat moldy food, eat moldy food.  If you want to run as fast as you can into a wall, do it up son.  If you want to look down the barrel of a gun to make sure it is 100% clean, rock and roll my friend.

Round-the-World Solar Plane Touches Down in China – ahhh, a feel good story.  Wasn’t sure we’d run into one of those today.

Man Finds Stranger Buried Next to Wife, Again – I think the key word here is ‘again’.  Am I the only one who can’t stop laughing?

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