Tuesday, November 30, 2010

And lo...it begins

Ramblings Post #155
There are moments that define our lives. Hopefully this will not be one of those moments. Hopefully, this will be one of those mundane moments that slips by unnoticed, barely to cause a ripple in the synapses responsible for memory. Hopefully this will not be a moment looked back upon except to say, "Man it sure got cold fast." Because if this isn't one of those moments, it means everything went just like it was supposed to. I hope.

Once again, we arrange our thoughts into the patterns which are now familiar, with thoughts of relevance and standings, of legal standards and concepts emanating from holdings. And once again, we ask ourselves why did not like ourselves enough to subject ourselves to this madness. Once again...law school finals are upon us.

As a part time law student, I again have three finals: Wills Law, Family Law, and Evidence, in that order.

The wills law test is open book, open notes, open everything. Which means in the grand scheme of things, our professor will attempt to pull out those little idiosyncratic facts that she only glossed over for seconds in class, in an attempt to see just how good your notes are. Which really isn't testing! I have my outline fleshed out with an old outline from a previous class of hers ( the handwriting of my notes in class left just too many gaps) which I will be reading and re-reading until test time, and then beyond.

The Family Law test also, is open book. And three days long. You see we download it and then have seventy two hours to finish and upload. And considering there were classes we didn't even touch the assigned reading, this promises to be a whole different kinda test. Especially since she's looking for crafted legal opinion based upon a given set of facts...and those are always tricky, seeing as how I'm just still a law student. At least she was nice enough to give us an example.

The evidence final is my only closed book final. Which makes me feel good, as it limits the amount of a mental frustration. I've been working the flash cards...for which I'm getting the right answers but giving the wrong reasons...and breaking down the case file she gave us for the big questions.

I'll admit studying has been off and on all last week. I would do some flash cards, then laundry. Read through an outline, then watch some TV. Look through my family law notes and the example, look at my new slimmer figure in the mirror, pose for pictures. Okay, let me stop joking...I didn't do that much laundry, mostly folding.

Most law primers say you should start studying for the final in week one. Which would be great, if our professors didn't say "don't concentrate on the final". Which is odd, since our entire grade is usually based on that one event. It both is, and is not, helpful. So you can't start studying, if you have no idea how the professor is going to test. Details? Grand concepts? Do these people realize I still have a full time job? 

Barkeep. I will need fifteen shots of Jager, two lemon drops, and one shot of bourbon, rum, and moonshine. And when I finish drinking that, point me to the books...

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Family Post #2
Sometimes you need to look at the people who were there before you, blazing the trail so you could walk easily. I'm not talking about the figures we read about in history books, Martin Luther King or Shirley Chisholm. I mean the people who paid the mortgage month in and month out, that ones that looked out, the heroes who get up every day and go to work so that small children can experience childhood as it was meant to be. The ones who worked hard so I could dream, the ones who sacrificed so I could have. I'm talking about family.

In the past, the trip home for the holidays was mandatory. Nothing could stop or hinder it, nothing could have impeded it. Then as I got older, things changed. It was okay to miss one. In the past loading up whatever I was driving and heading into the wilds of lower South Carolina were a must. It was in some ways a re-affirmation of my identity. Who I was, where I came from, who my people are.

In 2008 I wrote about my trip to see my family.

When I was younger, going to my aunt's house for Turkey day was a magical trip. They would start cooking on Sunday. Two or three turkeys. Chicken. Ham. Venison. Ribs. Rice and Gravy. Macaroni with Cheese. Stuffing. Green Beans. Butter Beans. Peas. Candied Yams. Buttered Rolls. And this is just what i can remember eating. There might be ten different desserts. Going to their house was a feast, there would be enough food for a hundred, with family and relatives you might not see again for months. Folks and neighbors would float in and out all day. It was time to catch up, to hear all those funny stories ....one day I'll speak on my cousin Ray...and reconnect with the folks who will care for you, no matter what. My brother thinks it's more important than the insanely over commercialized Christmas. I think he's got a point.

Earlier this year, one of my aunts on that side of the family had a stroke, and so we visited them. The usual buffet was set out in the kitchen, okay maybe food for fifty this time, and we all passed in and out of her room so that she could have visitors. She's come a long way, but she's got a ways to go yet. But her sense of humor hasn't been affected one bit. She cracked jokes with every other sentence, keeping us in stitches as we all made the best of what it was.

It's moments like this, when family means something.

Now, almost three years into law school, struggling with the daily grind of work and education, and the minutiae of existence that bogs us all down, I am once again not going home for the holiday. My auto, on the verge of being paid for, is of course having issues. And my brother's car is having issues, but then he's been payment free for a while. And finals are around the corner. And the job is in transition. Life is happening.

People were headed that way I could have gotten a ride, but nobody's coming back for a minute, and I've got study sessions and work...not to mention I'd like my stuff to be there when I got back. My house hasn't moved, the neighborhood is still "in transition". I couldn't have gotten down there and back on a reasonable schedule without way too much rigamarole, getting back too tired to do those things I need to do. My mother agreed, but then she's big on the school thing, and the keeping my stuff in my house thing.

I miss my grandmother, who I really wanted to see this year.

From 2008:
I also renewed the deal I have my grandmother that we're going to dance at my eventual wedding, which to her means she can't "go anywhere" and has to keep active. It's the same deal we've had since I was 15, although now she razzes me about great grand babies now instead of wives. I remember when I was a kid, that house my grandparents lived in seemed so big, and now it seems crowded whenever you have more than four people in the kitchen. And just like when I was kid, even from her wheelchair (sigh), I watched grandma take a few minutes to make sure my granddad's hair was okay.

When I talk about love...65 years like them is what I mean.

Life isn't fair. Just because.

Family is important. Today I'll probably head down to my uncle's for some turkey and see a cousin or two. Then head back to the house and start going through my flash cards, and over my outline...which I need to retype from scratch...and get my mind on what I need to do, to get through this next phase.

Still, it would have been nice to stand outside my grandmother's house and look up at the Milky Way. From her place you can see it.

Barkeep. My people drink brown.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Next Phase

Ramblings post #154
They used to say that the only things for certain were Death and Taxes. Now, with the latest Republican congress, I ain't so sure about Taxes. But I am sure about one thing that should have been there. Change. You can be certain that change will happen. If only that's tomorrow you're one day older than you were yesterday. The only things certain are Death and Change. Just doesn't have the same ring to it.

For them that know, and them that don't, for the past few years I have been attempting to transform myself.

I'm not happy with my job or career path, and other items way to numerous to mention, and as it turns out strangely enough, that when I finally get tired enough I actually do something about it. So I've been writing a lot more, I went back to school for new skills, which in turn got me focused, and this past summer I decided to something about the physical.

Yeah, it turns out despite being an intelligent, employed, warm, affectionate, good credit having, educated, take a sista out regular, well read, romantic, witty and adventurous modern day renaissance hero (not to mention modest)... I wasn't what the women were looking for.

So, after gathering my fortitude, and enough money for the fee, I joined a weight loss program and got started. So with much effort and determination...okay, some determination... well, after it actually started working...I said let's do this and put my mind to it.

I started at 307 pounds.

I've lost a little bit since then. 52-ish pounds. A little bit.

And whereas I think I'm the same, the world...or at least when I'm paying attention some parts of it...looks at me different. Or at least looks at me.

The trick now will keeping it off. The weight loss phase I paid for is now exhausted, and we go to the maintenance and upkeep phase. The program has a system, but I got gym time planned and exercising I want to do on my own, so we'll see what happens.

Barkeep...um, Crystal Light Orange...with a shot of vodka? Let's see how that works.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Bar Chatter

Bar Chatter #17
Sometimes it just ain't enough to make a post, but it's still ne
eds to go out....it's just bar chatter.

I am apparently uninterested in thousands of hits and lots of traffic for this blog.

I've visited other blogs, nosed around a bit, and since this blog contains no nudity or links to it, no funny or artsy picture cavalcade, and only limited political and sports commentary, it's not exactly what you would call a "big draw".

I've considered putting in deceptive search terms to draw in the crowds, but I have to ask myself what am I really looking for in a reader? I'd prefer someone who actually reads this stuff as opposed to someone who clicked in to see the crazy imaginary subject. The lonely soul who might click through to see "buck naked whatever" or retort to a screed such as "that politician is a hucky muck" really aren't my intended audience. I realize the hypocrisy in that statement because I write it, then go look at the stuff, but logic is convoluted. And purple.

This would be a lot easier if I was a comely young coed, who occasionally posted risque personal photos among her mental musings, fashion and weird photographic discoveries. I note that some of those blogs have thousands of followers. But as I is no longer young, and decidedly male...although I am rather good looking, but not comely..., and have decided to continue to post mostly my own written content with the occasional photo enhancement. Okay, it's really that I don't look that great in a thong, so this is what it gon' be.

Still a few comments would be nice.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Harry Potter (As required by Internet Rule #47854b)

Ramblings Post #153
It's that time of year, when it gets a little chilly. When the coats come out, the hot chocolate starts its mojo and the snuggling is the lick. And because we don't ice skate in the South, people release movies because they know we don't have anything else we want to do. Because it's cold outside. And the movie theater has warm popcorn. Warm-ish, anyway.

I actually read the first part of one of the Harry Potter books once. It was during a long road trip, there were too many folks in the car of disparate ages so the consensus radio station pick pleased no one, and I technically will read just about anything.

I was surprised first to find it was a children's book. The tome, and it was a tome - meaning a thick piece of book - that I picked up looked daunting to the experienced reader. That a child would sit down and read it in depth gave me the impression that inside must be damn good writing. Note the use of the term "impression".

Apparently my tastes in literature had matured.

I read a quick hundred or so pages during the first part of the ride, wondering what the fuss was about. [ In the interest of full disclosure, I hope I'm never in a situation where I have to read any of the Twilight books. Not ever. ] Maybe you have to start at the first book, but good book series' make you want to go back. When we stopped for gas, that book made me buy a magazine.

And now, who knows how many years later, they've been adapted to the movies, which I understand are in a decidedly un-Hollywood fashion "true to the source material". I think I watched the first two. I mean the HBO is paid for, so why not? And because all good things eventually do, that series is about to come to an end.

And the internet tears are starting to flow.

I am unamused.

Maybe it's that I didn't really find her writing all that appealing. It is rare that I'll start reading something that I don't want to finish, because I've found something I want resolved, and then I just want to finish. And the one I started reading, I remember the lead character going to a Quiddictch tourney or something and they had to "camp" out wizard style. The story didn't really have an impetus to me, but like I said, maybe you had to start at the beginning.

Maybe its that I just don't appreciate magic stories. Stories with magic are usually sloppily written, with the character always finding or finally getting right that one spell they need for that one heroic occasion, just in the nick of time. To build needed story tension, most times the author has to telegraph this intention with obvious clues way too early. I like a bit more sophistication in my writing, stories where I have to flip back and forth to make sure they really did do X fifty pages ago, because it was so subtle you would have missed it at regular speed.

Maybe it's petty jealousy, because I've never been able to finish anyone of the many series I've started in my head. Way too often a new story idea pops its head up because that's how my brain works, and rather than lose the idea I jump on it....which puts everything else back. I say way to often because in the past month a new story idea popped out, and today, yet another. And I have finals coming up so all I can do is jot down some notes. Frustrating.

But in any case, I'm just unamused at this outpouring of emotion.

And then the author, Ms. Rowling, has hinted at yet another Harry Potter book, even though she pretty definitively ended the series with the epilogue of the last book. So a "next chapter" in the story makes no sense. The only reason to write another one, because she surely doesn't need the money, is ego. That, and perhaps my suspicion that she got lucky with this story idea and is afraid (or unable) to craft anything else that doesn't borrow heavily from this. Writing a second story line that either doesn't touch or or lightly brushes the old character in an established universe takes talent, but writing something entirely new with the same breadth and scope means you might be related to writing wunderkind Stephen King, if only spiritually.

And I quite frankly don't think she has it in her.

I won't see this movie until, in a Pirates of the Caribbean fashion, one of the cable channels gives us a 16 or 20 hour Harry Potter marathon weekend. And then only if I can't find the remote.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bar Chatter

Bar Chatter #16
Sometimes it just ain't enough to make a post, but it's still needs to go out....it's just bar chatter.

I've been on this weight loss plan for a hot minute now. And the mix of school, work, study and sleep along with no comfort food is a trying concept. That coupled with the reality that I have like negative social life due to my hectic schedule leave me feeling blah on many a day.

But yesterday at work I showed up to a meeting that was later canceled.

That's where I got a little ego boost, like maybe I'm doing a little something right. To get back to my little corner of the chicken plucking factory, I had to walk through the main "plucking" floor. As I ambled towards the stairs I saw one of the women look in my direction, then look again. She wasn't even subtle about it either. Then she waved a hello.

Yep, I got me a genuine double take.

Now I need to get a double take with an inadvertent "damn!"

I dunno. When all you get is crumbs, the whole cookie would be nice sometimes.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Movie Scene

Ramblings Post #152
He is responsible for more bad movies and television than quite possibly any other character in literary history. And by that I mean more actors, directors and producers have tried to capture his magic and failed than any other. He started a craze, engendered an idea, and has been in more films than Godzilla...maybe. I read the books, watched the movies, and pray that there is never a television series. Not even on HBO.

I've been planning a movie, actual film in camera movie, for years now. Only life, work, money, and that pesky law school have kept me from stumbling onto to stardom. [Indulge me, geez!] This will of course lead to another movie, then another, and finally the big time. And one of the things I want to do when I get there, is to shoot one of the greatest scenes of all time. Well, at least to me.

The scene is the pre-credits sequence in a movie I conceived ages ago roughly titled Supply Man, with a its lead character a low level grunt in one of the cliched no name super secret spy agency who is charge of finding things for actual spies.

[Open Scene]
Our erstwhile hero would be playing cards in a club somewhere, considering his cards and toying with his chips. An older man would make an off screen comment regarding his slow style of play, and the camera would pan over to a grizzled Sean Connery.

The next player would counsel patience, and the camera would slide over to Roger Moore.

You would cut back to the hero, still looking at his chips who then make a half-assed comment trying to appear casual.

Timothy Dalton, from the other side of the table would question him as to the meaning of the hero's statement. He would look a little agitated.

Pierce Brosnan would say something that sounds as though it's in the hero's defense, then crack a joke at our hero's expense.

The last card player, who returns from getting a drink would be Daniel Craig, who would complain that we were still playing the same damn hand. At this point the hero would fold, and gather up his meager funds.

As the hero leaves, a new guy - George Lazenby - would enter, stop the hero and ask how the game is going. The hero would make a comment about how he realizes he's out of his league, wish the new fellow luck, and then the opening credits would roll.

The chances of me, or really anyone, actually shooting this scene are just the other side of impossible, as Sean Connery said he'd never shoot another movie again and I'm not even sure George Lazenby or Roger Moore is alive. But it's still a great scene, the kind that since nobody's name is ever mentioned, the appearance of Connery would shock, and then Moore, would have some waiting to see if they popped back up again. Maybe at the very end.

The question would be...would anyone even understand why George Lazenby gets a seat? And if Woody Allen stumbled in and asked "what?", would anyone even get it?

Barkeep, a drink for my dreams.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

When the dark clouds gather on the horizon...

Ramblings Post #151
Sometimes the clouds look nasty and foreboding, and you turn on a old movie and get a big bowl of popcorn...or boil some peanuts... and get ready to hear the sound of rain drops, or lighting. If you're lucky, you got somebody to forget the rain with. So, like I said, me, I get a blanket and old movie. There is nothing like being bundled up when it rains. That said, this post is about football.

This past Sunday, the Cowboys spoiled my whole afternoon. I had expected to get some studying done, what with the upcoming semester finals and all. I had not gone to two or three functions making sure I had it all straight in my head - doing the flash cards, going over the hypotheticals, etc.

But, because the Cowboys had changed coaches, I felt compelled to at least watch some of the game. I tuned in and was pleasantly surprised to see them ahead. But then the 'Boys have scored more than 20 points six times this season, so it's not necessarily the offenses' fault. But as I watched, it looked like the Cowboys were playing like...like they had a pair!

So instead of watching ten minutes of the game and going on to studying in disgust, I watched the whole thing. Wrecked my whole day.

Then after class on Monday, I clicked on the Monday Night game to get the score. I swear I thought it was a graphic error, then Mike Vick hit the blue x button on his controller and did this juke move and it was 35 to nothing. [ Note: I said it before, but know had Vick played for the Cowboys, dog fighting would be legal in Texas. Arthur Blank is frustrated as hell right now] Vick's performance simply had to be mentioned.

But what remains to be seen...is if the Cowboys are the coming of a storm...or just a cloudburst.

Still waiting.

Barkeep, get me some waiting beer.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Ancient History come to life

Ramblings Post #150
Life is full of regret. I regret my instinct to buy that shirt. I regret not getting the caramel toppings. I shoulda just said yes and got in the Ferrari. I mean, if you have no regrets, then you probably haven't made very many choices, because the odds of all the choices you have made turning out in your favor are slim to none. You can't dwell on them, but use them as tools to learn to live better. But every now and then you have to wonder how things would have changed if you had...

I would be getting old. Older.

Singe is a mother.

Now I've never actually met Singe, or even talked to her on the phone, or anything like that. We've only ever conversed over the internet. But oh what a hot little virtual affair it was. A decade or so ago, wandering the internet back before the rise of Google and Yahoo, back when finding stuff on the internet meant actual forethought and diligence, when Netscape Communicator was a viable browser, I found a little...well, internet gated community.

This was pre-MySpace. Back when Geo-Cities was the lick, and you had to actually look for your adult entertainment. It was a little off the beaten track message-board, one sitting on a server because somebody got bored and wanted a place to just talk shit. Now a decade later its still there, still kicking along. People have come and gone, but I still check in almost daily just see what's up. There are few things I use on the internet enough to feel compelled to contribute to it's upkeep, but that message board I have actually sent real money to so the owner will keep it functioning. That reminds me, in January I need to tighten her up again.

That's where I "virtually" met Singe. This was 2001 or so, and thinking back, she might not have even been of legal drinking age when we first started chatting and I guess virtually flirting. I remember when I used to work the overnight at this one job, and our conversations floated in and out between actual work, sometimes keeping me from setting that joint on fire. From the pictures she frequently posted to the board, the consensus was that she was, um, cough, "fiyah" and from her posts about as opinionated as you can make a New Yorker. For some reason we hit it off immediately.

When the message-board put together a pass around soap, each member writing a section that the next would have to pickup and continue, we quickly became a virtual couple in the story. Online we flirted and acted like we lived down the street instead of half a country away. Sure, we both had actual lives, and real life partners who wandered in and out those lives, and this was just online play, but there were times she appeared to express actual real jealousy when I did certain things. She actually mailed me stuff . Not email, real mail. The power of internet connections is mystifying. It was weird, but nice.

Plane tickets aren't that expensive you might think, and since I'm in Atlanta and she is in New York, and there are at least eight flights a day on Airtran alone, Singe and I should have at least shared a meal or two over the course of the last decade. I don't think it ever occurred to either of us. And, after as somebody put it on the 'board: "special actions usually create the expectations of special favors" the idea was a definite no. On a business trip, Spanky and her hooked up to hang out, but that didn't go well and I think they still don't talk to one another.

We're facebook friends now. Although she's still a member of the spot, but doesn't visit anymore. And its been six or seven years since we've flirted like that.

The new baby, by the way, is beautiful.

Life keeps giving me these reminders that at some point that other people are living on the own schedules, got their own agendas, their own life plans.

Makes you wonder what if?

In both directions. Forward and back.

Barkeep, I'm gonna need a tall drink for me, and fruit juice for shorty over here.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

It rains in Dallas

Ramblings Post #149
And lo, in the shadow of the long history of the team wrought in the hands of he who was called Tom, a dark season arose. Heralded as champions they broke in the face of challenge, with penalty and miscue the items of their destruction. And the deluge came, wiping the smiles from the faces of those in the city of Texas. And beset with troubles and tribulations, Jerry Jones said, let there be change, and thus did fire Wade in disgust.

We can just put this cut out on sideline.

I cannot competently or unbiasedly comment on the goings on in Dallas.

I wasn't entirely comfortable with Jerry buying the team in the first place, but I guess a few Superbowl wins early in his regime mollified me as much as it did everyone else.But still.

But for decades the Cowboys had a system that worked. Then Jerry came along and quite honestly, bought his way into pro football. And since he bought the team he would run it his way. And as a man who made enough money to buy the damn team, you would think after all this time he would have figured out that he doesn't know how to run it.

As the venerable Jed Clampett once said: "You don't change horses in the middle of the stream". True that cataclysmic shift suddenly makes the team of interest again, as instead of a coach who knows the door is around the corner going through the motions but not killing himself to win, you now have somebody trying out for the job - and so every game will matter to him in the most important of ways: his future.

I hope Garrett can impart some of that urgency unto the team. Okay, maybe the playoffs are out, but right now you play for pride. Because you're a Cowboy. Because winning is fun. Because playing spoiler is even more fun.

How about them Cowboys?

Well...I'm waiting.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Photography 305

Ramblings Post #148
As a general rule, I don't usually ask someone to do something that I have the ability to do, but choose not to do for what I can only consider dubious reasons. That said I do have a lawn guy, despite the fact that I barely have a lawn. But my own reluctance to impose is the truth. Most of the time.

Sporty asked for a picture the other day.

Of me.

This request made me realize, that although I used to get on her about not taking any pictures - that I don't like to take pictures. But then she's a cutie with a smile that hypnotizes and I just have a nice personality, the latter of which generally needs a special lens to capture, so there is a slight difference. But since I'm down a couple of pounds she wanted to see the progress.

So I stopped studying for a hot second to take a picture. Forty five minutes, two locations and three wardrobe changes later, I had a single fairly decent photograph. Just the one.

Photography is hard.

When Sporty lived here, I had one or two good pictures of her. One she gave me and the other I took of her at one of her games. I framed the game one and actually gave it to her as a present. But she was adamantly against the idea of regular photos - at least in regards to my requests, which is why a lot our hanging out is memorialized not with candid pics of us at various restaurants, but with a thick sheaf of restaurant receipts and ticket stubs. Now that I think about it, it probably is better there are no candid shots, because it would have been the "before" me in all those photos.

When I say "the before me", since I was on the computer, I found a picture from before the diet and put it with the pic I had just taken and I could see the difference, clearly. Makes me realize I'm not quite done. My plan is to hit the gym after finals and start to tone this up a little more, and by the spring I'll be looking for any excuse to take my shirt off. Need help moving? Let me take my shirt off. Want to shoot some hoops? Let slip my shirt off. Would I like a plate of pasta? Don't want to get my shirt dirty. But right now, I'm still not quite photo ready.

My goal at one point was to have a kind of fashion spread type photo or two of Sporty, which I would have framed and on my wall in what was to be my office, back when my future house was to have had an office [My future house will, so the plan is just "on hold"]. Not the crazy fashion spread, well, okay, a crazy eclectic fashion spread, but something fun, not like on the model shows which get all weird about it. When she lived here I once toyed with the idea of paying for a photo session, but we talked about it and we both knew she'd never do it. Back then. Apparently Texas is much more photo conducive, with the good light and air and all. Either that or she finally took her digital camera out the box. Not that I'm complaining.

But I still want something that just captures her essence. Because I will get it blown up, framed and hang it on the wall. So that one day when my kid asks about the picture, I will lean down to him, look around and make sure we were alone and whisper to him, "Well, she was supposed to be your momma."

With any luck, he'll look back at me and say "But that is my momma!"

By the way, Sporty liked the pic. She said I look fantastic.

I ain't asking no questions.

Barkeep. One good whiskey. With just a hint of branch water.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Lowcountry DTUD & BBQ.

This is a Political Post...

Who exactly is running the Democratic Party? I have to ask, because it looks like it's run out of the back of a comic store between World of War-craft missions. The country is at stake, the minions of darkness are running rampant [aka the Tea Party] and the people who pulled the country back from the chasm are now vulnerable politically. It's like they got the ship off the iceberg, got it patched up and now the guys who hit the iceberg in the first place by forgetting the safety precautions somehow convinced the passengers they didn't do it.

I ask who is running the Democratic Party, because I need to let them know that Lowcountry Dirty Tricks, Underhanded Dealings and BBQ, Inc is ready to pick up the ball and run with it...next election...because they really need some help. Why the Lowcountry? Because they practically invented dirty politics in South Carolina. We know our stuff.

I kind of envision the whole operation as occupying some offices a block or two off the capitol building, serving top quality BBQ with all the fixings [ Texas Toast, Brunswick stew, Baked Beans, Macaroni with Cheese, etc] and running counter political psy-ops out of the backroom. There will also be a pool table. Maybe even beer on tap. Now, to be clear, there wouldn't actually be anything illegal happening - just the common sense arguments you see from your local comedian or on the Daily show actually applied along with some candidate coaching, consulting and prep. The name however is an attention grabber.

Opposing candidate claim that the Democratic candidate is and elitist and over educated?

Cut to a commercial - featuring a casual doctor, making fun of patients and guessing at diagnosis, then an engineer building a bridge guessing at the measurements, then a "pilot" boarding a plane making remarks that he'll figure it out once they're in the sky - story point: Sometimes you want an expert.

Opposing candidate claim that the Democratic candidate is out of touch with the mainstream?

Sit the candidate down for three or four days with the people, in a hotel lobby or store front. Have him listen and talk to the folks from sun up to until he passes out - Story point: We've talked to the people (And not just supporters, people who are mad at him too!)

Opposing candidate claims he'll lower taxes and that will increase revenue?

Cut to commercial - featuring two little kids dividing up money. Have one little kid explain to the other how less money is more money - story point: You can't take in less and get more.

Think of the LDTUD and BBQ as a little propaganda think tank for the Democratic Party that makes a sweet but hot sauce you want to run your bread through after scarfing down a plate of the pulled pork. You know, that trademarked yeasty Texas Toast we'll serve.

Because although the the Republican party has been hijacked, and the vast majority of their programs are special interest directed, they've become very good at selling their message in the past few years. What the Democratic Party party really needs is better signage, a larger social presence. The truth in a brown paper bag seems to only get you so far these days, people need packaging and ribbons, to be entertained.

We'll skip the fear, and go straight for making laugh, then get them to think the arguments through. The key is making people feel like they're in on the joke.

It's worth a shot.

By the way, if this doesn't work I'd like to meet with the heads of the NBA, NFL and MLB to discuss my idea for Grown Man, Inc, a kind of program to teach athletes how not to end up a) destroying the league image and/or b)blowing through all the millions they're about to earn.

Barkeep, vanilla shake. I really, really want a good vanilla shake.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Serious Men

Ramblings Post #147
I alluded to this document here, so I felt compelled to post it. It stems from a comment I heard, this young woman once said her problem was she didn't know how to make her man get serious. My thought was that her outlook was the problem. She needed to stop trying to make the man she wanted become serious, but look for a serious man she could want. To sum that up, I penned this:

Who are the serious men?

Serious Men come in all shapes and sizes. They’re not just male model types, but regular guys. Just as beautiful women don’t only come in a size two, the serious men don’t all have six packs. Some are sharp dressers and some just put on clothes, but a serious man is concerned about his appearance, he just doesn’t obsess about it. A serious man cleans up nice, but doesn’t look like he’s putting on a fashion show just to go to grocery store. His style is flexible, but usually not trendy. He knows the labels, but makes up his own mind as to what works for him.

Who are the serious men?

Serious Men are men who have a game plan for life, not just the now. Their weekends aren't this club and that party all the time, they tend their property, their plan or a personal project regularly. They know more than the sports page, they know the front page and larger issues. They can go out and have a few drinks and be the life of the party of that's what's called for or sit quietly and watch when it isn't. Some drive the same car they drove in college because its paid for and they can put the money to something else. Some drive the latest car because they realize they need to project that particular image to get to what they want. Some drive that car because that's just what they want. But they all live within their means, so that they can continually expand those same means.

Who are the serious men?

Serious Men haven't given up on the dream, they've just reformulated it. They're not trying to get a record deal, they're trying to run a record label. They realize they're not going to be a pro athlete, so they begin to plan to buy a pro team. Serious men put their old dreams aside so they could pick up new dreams. They are educating themselves, through study or life experience to get to the next plateau. Serious men know where they want to go, and realize there aren’t shortcuts to get there.

Who are the serious men?

Serious men are the guys you talk to who expand your mind. They are the men you ask for advice when you want more than a emotional opinion. Serious men can see both sides of the argument, and conversations with them that are insightful and knowledgeable, spanning more than their circle of friends, more than their locale, more than simply where they are right now life, and take into account the larger dynamic. Serious men ask questions because they want to know, not because its expected at this juncture. They get their news and other information from various sources and conceive their own opinions, they don’t parrot other’s words without confirmation. Serious Men don’t let their egos get in the way of learning, of listening, and understanding.

Who are the serious men?

Serious men grow over time. You don’t look at him and see the same person from five years ago. A Serious Man self renovates, and though he may be on the same path, over time he has adapted his plan when faced with new obstacles, he has adopted new tactics if they appear more effective and if where he’s going becomes unattainable, he’s prepared to re-direct his energies. Serious Men don’t stagnate, they evolve.

Who are the serious men?

How do you recognize a Serious man? You can’t tell who he is by just looking at him, you have to observe him. You can’t tell if you’ve met a Serious Man in a day, in a weekend, or a month. It takes time. He's not Hollywood blockbuster, he's timeless classic literature. He is the guy who takes an interest in your activity because it’s YOUR activity, and if he commits he gives all his energy, he goes about it whole heartedly. He is a missing element when he is absent, and solid team player when there. He’s rarely the superstar, and usually recognizes those who help him, even in private. He's honest, even when it doesn't help him. Often people mistake his kindness for weakness, but a he’s the guy who will go all in if necessary when others disappear. He is the man you can count on…before you’ve been naked with him. He’s the guy you can count on…after you’ve stopped getting naked with him. You can count on...even if you never get naked with him.

Who are the serious men?