Posted by: Jay | April 25, 2008

Random Thoughts

‘Lost’ returned last night.

BEST. EPISODE. EVER.

Somebody asked me if I was a “gun nut” because of my passion for defending second amendment rights. I said, “No. I’m a freedom nut.”

American Idol is about trying to find the next big pop star. So why is it every year they have the contestants doing some kind of Broadway stuff? Last night was Andrew Lloyd Webber and while he was funny and engaging (And honest. He wasn’t impressed really with any of them), the performances were pretty boring. And Brooke? You never, EVER stop the way you did (Paula said so and it was the most coherent thing she said all night). Let the band play through until you can find your spot. They’ll know you’re lost and just loop around until you’re ready. But don’t stop like that. Very amateurish.

I hear next week is a visit from Neil Diamond. Kill me now.

I had to get tough with my son the other night. We were doing the baseball thing and he was looking to do something easier and I got a little harsh. It was necessary. Michael sometimes needs a big push to do something because he’ll fall back on what’s ‘easy’ for himself. Once I got over being a big meanie, I also told him how I know that he can do the things I tell him and that nobody plays any sport well at all without practicing. Right after that, he started to get it and he fell right into a nice routine with what we were doing.

A great advancement in technology is the ability for people to publish their own books. I’ve always thought it would be great to have a coffee table book with photos I’ve made and some commentary, but where could that be done without incurring major expense? Well now it can be done quite easily and it doesn’t cost much at all. Places like Walgreens and Walmart do it, though their product is a little on the cheap side. If you want to do something really nice, you can go to this site here. What’s great about Blurb is that not only can you purchase one or more books for yourself, you can sell it at their store. You can do an 80 page landscape softcover book for $22.00 or $34.95 for hardcover.

I’m going to do one after I take my trip to Georgia next month.

Speaking of Georgia, I haven’t been away with my wife and my kids where we were alone….ever. In the last 10-11 years, whenever we went somewhere it was usually near relatives. Vacations have been limited to me taking a few days here or there and going to the beach or other day trips. Never any alone time. With the stimulus check coming in, we were going to use some of it for painting the house and some other stuff. My wife calls IM’s one day saying to heck with all of that, we’re going somewhere and taking a few days for ourselves as a family and that’s that. I had no problem with it. The house can be painted some other time. Besides, I hate painting.

She started sending me links to the Nickelodeon Hotel in Orlando or was talking about going further south and staying near the beach. Phooey. We can go to the beach any time we want, and sitting around at a the Nick hotel surrounded by thousands of screaming kids is not my idea of relaxation. I’ve been wanting for a while now to rent a cabin up in the Blue Ridge mountains in Georgia. It’s an area just south of the Tennessee border and it’s beautiful. These ‘cabins’ are not these little log ones with dirt floors, but full sized homes that the owners rent out. They have all the amenities. I made the executive decision that is where we were going. She said the kids would be bored, but the kids have never been anywhere like this. When I showed them some of the cabins we could rent, and the nearby streams, waterfalls, hiking trails, fire pits, hot tubs (just about all of those cabins have them) they were thrilled. They’re looking forward to it and so am I.

Obama fans are complaining about ads that are attempting to link him to Reverend Wright. They say that Wright’s angry rants which include him shouting ‘God Damn America’ and accusing the United States of inventing HIV as a means of genocide against black people have nothing to do with Obama. That’s true. But some of the outrageous things that Pat Robertson or Jerry Falwell said had nothing to do with GOP candidates, but Democrats made sure to make it seem that way. Now they’re getting a dose of their own medicine and and wanting to bust out the Kleenex as a result. Predictably, because Obama is black they’re instantly blaming it on racism. I say, if you lie down with dogs, you’re going to get fleas. That’s politics and Barack Obama shouldn’t get a free ride on such stuff simply because he’s black.

We got rid of the package we had for Dish Network and went with the $29.99 all HD package with the local channels. We were going through the channels and aside from Nickelodeon, Disney and Cartoon Network, we realized there was nothing in standard definition that we watched or watched enough that it mattered if we were going to lose it. Because I have the Blockbuster All Access package (until they raise the price from the current $19.99), I told the kids they can get episodes of Spongebob and Hannah Montana on DVD and watch them. It will save us $33 a month. A complete no-brainer.

Wesley Snipes was sentenced to three years in prison for willfully failing to file income tax returns. Three years was the maximum sentence he was to receive. My views on this whole thing are mixed. For one, I kind of respect Snipes for walking the walk with regard to the tax protest movement. That being said, I think he went overboard getting all kinds of people to write letters and appeal on his behalf for a light sentence. While I respect what he did, he has to take his medicine. However, I also don’t like the judge “making an example” of Snipes and giving him a maximum sentence of three years in federal prison for what are misdemeanor offenses. Snipes shouldn’t expect special treatment because he’s famous, but he also shouldn’t be on the receiving end of more punishment for the same reason.

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