“The Last Word” – Shame on you

File Photo

Lawrence O’Donnell has a new show on MSNBC (“The Last Word”).  The show is part of the left leaning evening lineup where guests come on and discuss various topics.  (Yes, as a conservative I will watch these shows from time to time). The tone (O’Donnell) is that of an elite intellectual.  I am not a fan of O’Donnell but I will listen (and get frustrated at his condescending delivery of liberal political position).

However, he had Levi Johnston on as a guest because he is running for Mayor in Wasilla Alaska.  That sounds like a punchline in itself, but I digress.

Shame on O’Donnell for inviting him on the show to interview him as a potential mayoral candidate.  He asked him the same questions Couric asked Palin during the 2008 campaign and he failed worse that Sarah did.

Levi is a doofus and not deserving of such an interview even in spite of his running for Mayor.  O’Donnell knows this.  It was a low brow move.  Not Cool.  It makes you (O’Donnell) look like a bully.


TIMEOUT! “Fox News is ‘destructive’…” ????

This pisses me off.  Obama has had a burr in his saddle for Fox News since the beginning of his presidency.  That’s fine.  I understand why.  He disagrees with the viewpoint.  Fine.  But he claim it is “destructive” based on “… I think Fox is part of that tradition – it is part of the tradition that has a very clear, undeniable point of view,”.

MSNBC follows the same theme with a liberal point of view.  Let’s be fair and declare MSNBC destructive too.

As a consumer of news and analysis, I get who is who and what their agenda is.  I appreciate both sides.  Understanding the agenda as it relates to the content allows us to absorb the material.  After all, we are thinking people.

I just think it is very un-presidential for Obama to target one organization simply because he disagrees with the viewpoint.


Why Pro Football is Great…

The Ones Who Hit the Hardest

I can remember being 8, 9, 10 years old in the late 70’s watching the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Dallas Cowboys play against each other.

It was glorious.  We had 2 classes of teams.  The clean cut Cowboys lead by Staubach.  Landry in his hat calmly overseeing his team.  Toothless Lambert and the blue collar Steelers.  That was the time in my life that pro football entered my blood.

I wanted to play tackle football (we didn’t have flag football or tackle football starting in 2nd grade… which is a bit ridiculous.  I digress).  My mother would not let me play.  I finally started in 6th grade, but again… I digress.  My point… I became a Steeler fan and a Terry Bradshaw fan in 1978.

Recapture that passion of the great game in the new book from Chad Millman.  The Ones Who Hit the Hardest.

We know Terry Bradshaw as a fun loving Sunday analyst for Fox Sports.  But you need to read “It’s Only a Game“.  You will learn that Bradshaw called his own plays in those glory years and his relationship with the town of Pittsburgh.  A good read.  (I don’t read quickly, but I ripped through this one in 2 days during a Grand Cayman vacation.)

Another good book I read years ago… Conrad Dobler “They Call Me Dirty“.  Dobler talks about his playing days and the things that went on during the games.  Very entertaining.

Olive Garden, I gave you a chance

Olive Garden

Swing and a miss!   Just got back after a 2 hour adventure at the local Olive Garden.  Thirty minute wait to be seated and about 1 hour 15 min to get food.  Not a good showing.

We gave it a chance.   We held off on going until now.  New location.  New staff.  Etc.  The kids wanted pasta so I decided to take them to Olive Garden.  Lee’s Summit opened this location about 3 weeks ago.  I figured they have worked out the kinks with their service as many new restaurants do.  Didn’t matter… or they needed more time.

The 30 minute wait to be seated is not so bad and I can live with it.  You get that at many places.  The kids are another story.

I hadn’t been to an Olive Garden for 15 years.  I think the last one I patronized was over by the old Bannister Mall (it became a chinese buffet after that, which I probably frequented more).  I digress.

The Olive Garden TV commercials are so inviting.  It shows young, diverse, fit, smiling couples with nice teeth bubbling with excitement to eat pasta and bread sticks.  They look like they are having so much fun.  I want to have that kind of fun.  I can have that kind of fun.  Olive Garden should be full of vivacious people like this.

Au contraire….

Here is where reality smacks you in the face.  It starts outside the front entrance where people are smoking.  Quite a few people. (You have seen these power smokers… the older lady who smokes the Virgina Slim and her hand never leaves her face and the cigarette stays 1 inch away from her lips between drags.)   As they take years off their lives, the smell of cigarettes wafts into the foyer where everyone else is waiting.  Very unpleasant and the kids made mention of it more than once.

There were a number of people who left their table, exited, smoked, and returned (looking back, I know now this was related to the long wait for food).  How did we know they were the smokers?  They smelled like ashtrays.  It was gross.

I never did see any of those young, diverse, fit, smiling people with nice teeth.  Quite the opposite.  It WAS diverse for sure.  The diversity consisted of the elderly, Nascar fans and possibly an overeaters anonymous meeting.  The bottomless pasta bowl and free bread sticks were the sirens calling them in.  Where else can you get a sit down dinner of 1200 calories for $10 or less?

Let’s begin with salad.  “Salad” in the academic sense.  It had lettuce and was coated with some sort of oily substance.  Too much onion.  The only saving grace was the cameo appearance by the tangy banana pepper.  The bread sticks were good.  Kids loved them.  Not my thing, but I will offer a small gold star.

My glass sat empty for too long between replenishment in the 1 hour 15 minutes we sat at our table.  Another mark in the bad column.

The kids ordered normal kid fare.  Spaghetti with red sauce and chicken fingers (the boy loves his chicken fingers like Hugh Hefner likes blondes).

I ordered something lighter (The Venetian Apricot Chicken).  Sounded tasty right?

[Jeopardy Theme]

[tick, tick, tick]

[montage of me with a gray beard, kids with their graduation caps and diplomas]

Here comes the food.   You might have thought they make the pasta in house as long as it took.  Chicken fingers are your normal crap.  The spaghetti with red sauce left me unimpressed but I didn’t have high expectations from the kids menu.

My chicken dish was the equivalent of a high end frozen dinner.  The chicken breasts were flat (I prefer mine busty and full.  These were more like Goldie Hawn).  The broccoli, asparagus, and tomatoes were limp and bland.  The “citris” part of the dish must have been orange marmalade slathered on top.  Trust me when I tell you that the picture below did not resemble my dish.  (well, maybe the Goldie Hawn part)

Olive Garden: Venetian Apricot Chicken

To the server’s credit, at the 40 minute mark she recognized terrible service and was doing as much as she could.  Her tea replenishment picked up as soon as she caught on.

Will I go back?  Maybe, but I will give this place some more time.  I hope they get more microwaves in their kitchen to keep up with the demand.

PS.  Ron Best is listed as the General Manager.  I am not throwing him under the bus, but he needs to be informed.  They win as a team and lose as a team.

Don’t be stingy on your coffee experience…

Start the day right

One aspect of life is our to achieve levels of luxury.  One small way is to get yourself a good coffee maker.

Cheap coffee makers WILL break down over time.

A good one will last longer.  Treat it like any other major appliance.  You use it every day.

I would suggest to home builders to stub in water hookups for commercial style coffee makers much like they do for fridge ice makers or any other appliance.   But I digress.

What is in a good one?  A timer is priceless.  The timer allows you to make it in the evening and then have to start brewing and finish for your wakeup time.  Filterless (gold mesh baskets).  We all hate fumbling with the paper filters right?  The travel mug styles are pretty nice, but don’t really have weekender staying power when you want a normal morning mug.


Click below to buy from Amazon…

Facebookers are Narcissists


It’s true.  We are narcissists when it comes to social networking.

Here are some snippits…

“They also tend to use the site for promoting themselves to friends or people they would like to meet, the study concluded.

Researcher Soraya Mehdizadeh from York University in Canada asked 100 students, 50 male and 50 female, aged between 18 and 25 about their Facebook habits.

They all took psychology tests to measure their levels of narcissism, which the study defined as ‘a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and an exaggerated sense of self-importance’.”

Full Story….


Buildings and Books

The news has been full of angry and outraged conservatives chiming in on the Mosque in New York and the Florida nut job buring Quran’s.

This country can have some difficult situations to make sense of sometimes.  The religious right push for oppressive positions but forget about forgiveness.  The liberal minded will side with whomever they want to like them, but never offer any shame or societal justice.

Both of these groups/people have the right to do their respective poorly tasted activity.   We all agree that these acts are seen as poor judgement.  We don’t all agree how to deal with them.  Let’s not forget that we are founded in freedom free and this Country is based on some simple principles.

As a conservative that can sound somewhat liberal at times, I encourage the right leaning mouthpieces to quiet down and find a better argument and another way to vent over the Mosque issue and trying to back Obama into a corner (he is doing ok on his own).

Here is a good book understanding how to achieve peace.

Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time

Be an active member of your community and this country.

Citizen You: Doing Your Part to Change the World