Monday, May 27, 2013

Oh no, you don't say that...not on this day.

Happy Memorial Day to everyone.  Today is a day for remembering those that gave the ultimate sacrifice in the name of Freedom and for these United States.  Many members of my family and friends  served in the Armed Forces, having been deployed or are currently deployed overseas, and I am humbly grateful to them.

I had the chance to help out some friends down at Muscle Beach in Venice, handing out some samples of sports nutrition items.  We were also giving away bags, which are like the Legos of the free giveaways, everyone wants one and will do anything to get them.  

Being the gregarious, witty fellow that I am, I was eliciting responses from the crowd, just so it wasn't a mindless line up and take a bag exercise in zombie repetition.  Being Memorial Day, I wanted to include the weight of the holiday in my exchanges as a gentle reminder of why it exists.  An exchange would typically be:

Me:  "Hey there, would you like a bag?  
Gimme Grabber:  "Yeah."
Me:  OK.  I just need you to do one thing for me.  Tell me your favorite branch of the Armed Forces that help defend our country."

Simple, right?  I should add that the US Air Force had several tents there, along with a flight simulator that people were lining up to ride about 30 feet away with huge banners that said, "US Air Force."  Now, the majority of the people asked were able to answer with minimal hesitation.  However, there were many that could not, or stood there looking at me with such a blank look, that I would have to then help them with:

Me:  "Wow.  Really?  Look 30 feet over there and just read what you see."
Gimme Grabber:  "Um...oh, Air Force?  Air Force."
Me:  "There ya go!  That's really something you should know, especially today."


It's disgraceful.  You're out here, enjoying a beautiful day where you can wear what you want, do what you want, and be who you want because of the sacrifices that thousands of men and women made for you.  Earn it.  Be respectful.  Be aware of the history of your country.

But the worst, the absolute worst response that I heard today in response to my question?

"The kind that doesn't fight."

Whoa, pump the brakes kid, 'cuz I'm about to slap that smug, hippy, disrespectful taste right out of your mouth.  You do not just spit on the people that are fighting for your freedom.

Me:  "Oh no, no, no, don't say that, especially not today.  Keep walking."
Moron:  "What?  I don't get a bag?"
Me:  "Nope.  Not with that response.  Not on Memorial Day.  You gotta have some respect for those that died so you can be here today.  Move along."

He ended up by saying his grandpa served in the Navy, so he got a bag, but not from me.  

You can be against fighting.  You can be against the war.  That's your right.  A right that people died for so you thin mustached, Abercrombie tank wearing douche can enjoy the sun, sand, and sights of Muscle Beach without fear and worry.  Hell, I don't even think we should be in Afghanistan, but you do not tread on the graves of those Americans and foreign service personnel that gave their lives for the hope of a better world.  No sir.  

I hope that maybe he gives some thought to what happened today.  I doubt he will.  But maybe those that were around him and overheard our exchange will, and reflect on this day and the freedoms they enjoy.  And that's not ridiculous.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

R-E-S-P-E-C-T...nope, people don't have it.

(Let me preface this and say I do use adult language in this post.)

Hey out there in online-land!  Wow.  Can't believe it's been so long since I last posted the vomit that spews from my head.  Maybe that's a good thing.  Perhaps the vacation away has provided me with time to gain a better and more understanding view of the world in which I live....that's a NEGATIVE.  

Nope.  The world sucks and most people that live in it suck.

Let me explain.  I previously posted about the absence of common courtesy in the form of "thank you."  I will expand that theme to include the absence of common respect.  Now, here's the thing - I firmly believe that respect is earned and not given.  But there are varying degrees to earning respect.  In this case, respect is earned just by living to the point of adulthood, and I will respect you as such...until you lose my respect by starting to be an argumentative douche-nozzle.

My example:  I was out walking my dog around 10:00pm.  Upon returning to my house, there was a young, adult male sitting in my driveway, smoking a cigarette.  Now, my driveway abuts an alley, and there are a wide mix of persons that use said alley to navigate their way around the neighborhood, so seeing someone just hanging out, doing their thing is a common occurrence near my place.

As I walked up to my driveway, my exact words were: "Hey brother, I'm gonna ask you to go smoke that somewhere else, besides my driveway."

His response started to be:  "With all due respect..."

I didn't even let him finish that thought.  No.  There isn't any fucking thing you can say that will change my mind about you smoking in my driveway.  You could be drinking a juicebox, giggling at the balloon you're holding, and resuscitating a dead kitten, and it wouldn't matter.  You are in my driveway.  I don't want you there.  I asked you to leave nicely.  I respected your right to do what you choose as an adult.  My issue is the location in which you're doing it, and the fact it's affecting my home, life, and family.  You acquiesce.  You might hate to do it, and do so reluctantly, but you don't fucking try to argue about why you should stay there on my property.  I said, "No, no, no.  Don't even finish.  I asked you to leave.  I have a newborn, and I don't want you here."

His response:  "I can respect that."  And he left.

Cool.  So I ultimately got what I wanted, but why does it take an explanation and reason?  Some of you might be thinking, 'Hey, Slipocles, he did leave without really making a fuss.'  So fucking what!  On the flip side, if I had been sitting on his or YOUR car, and you/he asked me to stop doing that, and I started with, "With all due respect..." that would piss you off, right?  And why does it take a newborn to "earn" respect about the situation in which I asked you to leave?

The bottom line is this - in a world where more and more people try to be so politically correct, or understanding, or nice, or even just so Cartman-esque self-righteous in "I do what I want!", where is the line drawn?

I will tell you where that line is.  Your home and your property.  Your home is your castle.  I will include your vehicles and property in the "home" category to save time.  Your home should be a safe place - your private sanctuary away from the mess of a world and the people in it.  A respected place.  It's the place where you can be left alone to mostly do what you want, away from everyone else.  It's the place you decorate, fix-up, alter, and adjust to meet your needs, wants, and comforts.  What right does anyone have to project their thoughts or being on YOUR sanctuary?  They don't.  In an ideal world (yeah, right), everyone would leave your home alone.  No tagging, throwing trash, leaving dog poop, gum, or hanging out.  BUT, if they make the choice to not respect that home, I feel they should get whatever comes to them.  I asked you to leave my home.  You don't obey, now I'm telling you.  You still don't obey, then pain and punishment is coming your way.

They say home is where the heart is.  That's the truth for me.  My wife and I recently had our first child, and there isn't anything I wouldn't do to ensure his health, happiness, and well-being.  So, you leave my home alone..and I will respect you and yours.  And that's not so ridiculous. 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Perfect Day

At 8:54am, on Monday, April 29, 2013, my son Benjamin was born.  He weighed 8 lbs. 11 oz. and is healthy and well.  Mom is doing great and was amazing during delivery.

It's a perfect day.  He's perfect.  She's perfect.  The world is perfect.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

LAPD...To serve many, many bullets in the chance you might be whom we're looking for.

 (This post contains adult language.)

Hi again.  Yes, it's been nearly 3 years since I last posted.  I came back across my blog by a fluke accident.  Call it fate, call it the universe reaching out to me and pleading to shed some sane, logical thought to the mess of things happening in the world, but in all reality - probably just a fluke accident.  But I did feel the need to again type out the thoughts that bubble in my head.  A lot has happened in the time I've been away.  I obviously can't comment on everything, so I will stick to a current happening, and perhaps delve into the past to offer some 20/20 hindsight on this world in which we live.  In the meantime...

So the huge story in LA is all about Christopher Dorner.  This is a former LAPD officer that left on bad terms.  He was allegedly forced out of the department by bad cops when he reported on them.  Now he's planning payback in the form of killing those cops to clear his name.

OK, besides the obvious lack of sane, rational thought by Dorner to "clear his name," the LAPD is also lacking any rational thought and action in their attempts to catch this guy.

Below is a link to an article that describes 2 separate occasions where Torrance police opened fire on citizens in trucks without identifying the person(s) inside.

The details are similar:
1 - Saw a truck, didn't even match the description of make, model, or color.
2 - Did not attempt to identify driver or passenger(s) of vehicle.
3 - Rammed the truck.
4 - Opened fire on the truck.
5 - Whoops!  Wrong fucking people!

Torrance Police Shoot Wrong People

I don't even know where to start.  I guess let me say this.  I have tremendous respect for anyone that serves in law enforcement.  You have to confront and deal with shit each and every day, and most people hate you because of your job.  You have to carry a firearm when you go to work because chances are you will probably have to draw it, God forbid discharge it, to defend yourself while doing your job.  That being said - Law enforcement is not above the law.  Your job is to uphold it.  You are a peace officer, not a warrior, and not a soldier.  You do not go to war when you put on your uniform.

I fully understand that Dorner said he was going to kill every cop he could.  If I was a cop, I would want to catch the bastard, and probably give him a bullet of my own. However, I would also realize that he is one man.  Not some superhero that can materialize at will and stop bullets with telekinesis.  A man that bleeds, needs to eat, and take a crap like the rest of us.

So why in the world would you act as reckless as these cops did that just unloaded rounds on these people without even attempting to see if they were indeed shooting at Dorner.  In one of the shootings, the guy was a skinny white dude.  Dorner is a huge black guy.  How do you not see that?  You rammed his driver's side!!!  In the other one, over a hundred rounds were fired into the back of the truck, along with other cars and houses beyond the target (hmm...seems they forgot one of those safety rules about firearms...I don't know, something about knowing your target and what's beyond it).

The only saving grace for these cops is that they were fucking horrible, horrible shots.  For the 2 ladies that were hit once each, those cops had to reload 4 times, assuming they had standard issue Glock 17's.  If they had the Smith & Wesson 4566 or Glock 22's, then they had to reload even more times.  4 fucking times to reload without knowing who you're shooting at!?!?!  If a citizen did that, they would be in prison for attempted murder!

These people are getting millions of dollars for the ineptitude displayed by the LAPD.  Money that we, as taxpayers, are footing the bill for.  If these cops had used an ounce of common sense, this would not have happened.  But the citizens getting paid by us isn't even the worst part.  The cops shooting up these trucks and citizens isn't even the worst part.  No, the worst part is that these cops will not face any criminal charges for what they did.  They have been placed on administrative duty.  Again...if a citizen did that, they would be in prison for attempted murder!

This absolutely BLOWS MY MIND.  And they wonder why people hate the LAPD.  Because you indiscriminately shoot people and don't face any consequences!

Well, the cops have caught Dorner.  And by caught, they purposely set the cabin he was hiding in on fire, although they deny that, even though there are recordings of them saying to set it on fire, but that's another story.  Good riddance to Dorner.  I'm glad he's dead.  I'm hoping LAPD can sleep a little easier, knowing that someone isn't out there dead set on killing as many cops as he can.

And even though the news was all over this story, now that it's over, people will forget about it, and it will fade into the chaos of daily life in LA.  And those officers that randomly shot up citizens of the city will smile and probably go back on the street, knowing that people have short memories, and they skirted felony charges by being horrible shots.  It is a travesty that the people of LA and the local government are letting these 8 cops get away with such an unlawful, brash, and wanton show of deadly force.  I will say it again, if anyone else had done that, they would be in prison facing multiple attempted murder charges.  In LA, I guess cops are above the law.  And that's ridiculous.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Whatever Happened To...

Thank you? No, really. Thank you.

Where has it gone?

A simple two word phrase that shows appreciation for an act, thought, and/or object done for or to another person.

Go ahead. Say it. How long did that take? Maybe a second?

So why is it so hard to say? Are we that self-conscious or withdrawn into our shell of indifference that we cannot express the simplest phrase of appreciation? Hell, you can even say "thanks" and cut it in half, yet we still don't say it.

I write about this because I had the opportunity to perform an act of kindness today, and I took it. I held the door open for someone that had their hands full and would have either dropped the baby they were holding or the food they had just received. Because of my unselfish act, this person was able to exit a building without injuring the fruit of their loins or their fruit. As I moved aside to let them pass with my outstretched arm holding back a steel and glass weapon of impending doom, I must admit I fully expected a voiced acknowledgment about the ease of movement I personally provided. But no. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Not even a head nod or eye contact to offer a gleaning of thanks.

Now, I wish I could say the person had an exposed femur or the baby was sucking on its own eyeball to necessitate such a hurried and quiet escape, but no such luck. The kid was quiet, the lady was quiet, and the well-oiled door was quiet. I even gave them an additional two seconds to perhaps throw back the "I'm sorry I've got a lot of other things on my mind" thanks, but that didn't happen either. So I did what any self-respecting individual would do in light of such a transgression. I yelled, "You're welcome!" after them.

The lady turned and gave me a look of confusion, as if she didn't understand the scene that had taken place between us. "You know, for the door," I replied. She then just turned and walked on.

Okay, maybe I'm an ass for expecting a thank you and for making a big deal out of something that is relatively trivial in the grand scheme of things. BUT...MAYBE I'M NOT. Maybe, the grand scheme of things is to show appreciation to our fellow members of society and reach out to those in our community and beyond to continually reinforce those ideals of kindness, generosity, and community. Maybe, in the grand scheme of things, the more we show thanks and appreciation to those that come into and affect our lives for the better, however briefly, the more we come to appreciate our own lives and the blessings we've been afforded. Then again, maybe not. But I will BET that lady says "thank you" or even its pronoun-challenged cousin "thanks" to the next person that holds open a door for her.

Thank you for reading this blog. I sincerely appreciate it.

Welcome and...Did Someone Just Pour Out Your Tea? inaugural blog. I must admit I have never officially blogged before - commented on posts in Facebook and other websites, but have never originated a post that expressed a range of topics or thoughts that I intended for others to read and comment upon.

Let me first express this: I welcome every and all comments. I am not arrogant enough to believe my opinion on any subject is the gospel, so I look forward to viewing what the general population has to say on whatever mental vomit happens to project itself throughout this blog. At the very least, I would ask that personal attacks be left out and the guilty left anonymous to protect what's left of their misguided actions and statements.

On that note, I shall commence...

"Did Someone Just Pour Out Your Tea?"

It is amazing to me what people get upset over. Like the world just ended, cannot continue with life, I should just end it all now kind of angry - but over the most asinine things. I am guilty of the former, however, in my defense, those situations dealt with perhaps a more noble principle than what I will soon describe. But back to the story...A person threw a fit over someone pouring out their tea. Let me repeat that - A person (an adult and not a 5 year old child) threw a fit over someone pouring out their tea (a beverage derived from stewing tea leaves in water). The escapade ranged from the usual comments of, "Well, someone must have poured it out, 'cuz I didn't do it" to then repeated questioning of the same f'ing question.

"Did you do it?"
"No, I didn't. You already asked me that. I'm not changing my answer just because you asked me three times."
"Well, someone did it. Just tell me. Did you do it?"
"No. Why are you accusing me?"
"Because someone poured out my tea!"

Now, that's not the kicker. The best part came when it was suggested to just make some more.

"Uhh, I'm sorry someone poured out your tea. Can't you just make some more?"
"No! It takes 4 hours to make!!!"


Four hours to brew tea? What kind of tea is this? I will admit I know nothing about tea, besides that Lipton makes it with lemon and restaurants in the South serves cups of sugar with a little bit splashed in there, but c'mon! Four hours!? That tea had better give you superpowers or an immediate 'O face' because there isn't any drink that I would spend four hours to make that didn't do those things.

When questioned about what kind of tea takes four hours to make, the answer was a grumbled, incoherent stomping off, which still leaves me with the pressing question of what kind of tea actually takes four hours to make.

Now, there is actually some good that came out of this. A new idiom and addition to the English language. When you're pissed about something or see someone that's in a bad mood, you can say, "Did someone pour out your tea?" or "Wow. You look like someone just poured out your tea."

It actually has a nice ring and slides off the tongue quite well. More so than the "spilt milk" saying, which is just chastising anyway. At least mine presents an opportunity to inquire about someone's current mood and open a dialogue to their feelings.

I encourage all of you to use this new expression whenever you can, or make additions to it. Are there variations of "pouring out your tea?" Let me hear it!