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Of Politics, Sports and Sex

OK, so there won't be a LOT on here about sex, but tell the truth, that's most of the reason you entered this site, right? So, I'll slip some things in from time to time just to keep you coming...back.

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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Gives a whole different meaning to the expression about "You can pick your firends..."

I belong to a group through Trev and Emma's elementary school called All-Pro Dads and I get an email a day from them with advice on how to be a better dad and/or husband. They are usually pretty short and always have a link to another site, usually with a top ten type list of helpful hints on whatever the issue of the day is.

Today's email was thought-provoking for some reason:

Can You Affair-Proof Your Marriage?

In the book His Needs, Her Needs: Building An Affair-Proof Marriage, author Willard Harley relays the following about how affairs start:
 “An affair usually begins as a friendship. Frequently your spouse knows your lover; not uncommonly, the third party is the husband or wife of a couple you both know and consider ‘best friends.’ In another common pattern, the outside lover comes from your spouse’s family – a sister or brother. Or you may have met your lover at work.
 When an affair starts, it usually begins as a friendship. You share problems with the other person, and that person shares problems with you. As your friendship deepens, you start giving each other mutual support and encouragement, especially in regard to your unmet needs. Life is difficult. Many people become extremely disillusioned about their own lives. When they find someone encouraging and supportive, the attraction toward that person acts as a powerful magnet. Sooner or later, you find yourself in bed with your encouraging and supportive friend. It just seems to happen.”
The best way to prevent an affair is to stop it before it starts. And that means being very, very careful about good friendships with women other than your wife.

I have another idea. The best way to prevent an affair might be to not let my wife...or me either for that matter...have any close friends of the opposite gender. (If she wants to have an affair with someone of the same gender, I sure wouldn't want to discourage that!)

But kidding aside, if someone had asked me before I got married whether I thought one would be more likely to have an affair with a stranger or someone my wife knows, I think I might have said a stranger, so this theory above might have surprised, and maybe still does surprise me a little. But now that I visualize it, I can understand it. If I were the type to stray, I can totally see that happening...with Cheryl or me. I think we are all attracted, not necessarily in a physical way, to the people we choose to hang out with, and sometimes that leads to looking at them in a different way, but sometimes the two also go hand in hand, so to speak. I think it's easier to become friends with someone you are also physically attracted to at some level.

I've always maintained that I wouldn't be upset if I were to find out that Cheryl had had or was having an affair. It's her body, she can do what she wants with it. But I have a feeling that I don't ever really want to find out if I really mean that. I am more sure that I wouldn't want to divorce her for it. As we like to say about each other: We're stuck with each other. This is it for us. We really are in it til death do part us...though I think we both assume that we'll be together even longer than that. :-)

OK...enough about sex...back to posts about Christmas! Probably says something important about you as to which topic you prefer talking about more.

5th Day Of Christmas: New Traditions for your Family

Hmmm...not sure what this one means, whether it means new traditions we've recently started, are going to start this yer or want to start. But that's cool, that means I can make it mean whatever I want it to mean.

And I'm still kind of stumped. I guess we're kind of stick-in-the-muds. On the other hand, how can you have a new tradition? I remember coming up with a pair of linked personal mottos back as far as high school or college...and that is pretty far back...: Try anything once. Do anything twice and it's a tradition.

So, things we've recently done twice...CHERYL?!

Ah - here's one we've done the previous two years. We had gotten our Christmas tree every year at a place near Parkesburg with a little train you ride out to where the trees are and then search around until you find one, then you cut it down and drag it back to the train to take you back. It was expensive and the selection seemed to wane. So we started going to a new place near Paul and Suma's that we've been pretty happy with. There's no train, but there is free beer! Now that's a fun new tradition!

Oh yeah, and free hot chocolate for the kids. We haven't asked them whether they prefer the train or the hot chocolate, nor I suppose do we intend to.

On the third day of Christmas: Holiday Bucket List

Only 4 days behind on my days of Christmas...My holiday bucket list - interesting concept. The first thing that came to mind was spending Christmas somewhere else some day, like at my sisters' Laurie or Judy's, but that's not only presumptuous, it may not be practical.

That said, I think one year, I'd like not to either give or receive a paid-for gift. I'd like to make all my gifts and ask only for handmade gifts, or donations to the non-profits of the giftgiver's choice.

Or maybe the cute girl in the background who seems to typify most of the country - not even paying attention

Newt Gingrich

I don't know which part I like best about this picture - Newt with his demonic laugh or the guy in the background, summing up perfectly the way we all feel about the possibility of Newt being elected President in 2012.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Second Day of Christmas: Budget-Friendly Ideas

Assuming this is meant to be Christmas-related...of course the very most budget-friendly idea is to spend less on Christmas. It's kind of a running joke with Ev and Liss that every year, Cheryl and I announce somberly that this year, we are really cutting back on Christmas presents and this year we mean it! But then the piles under the tree are as big as ever. It just never seems fair to the younger kids that the older kid/s got the full Christmas and then we started cutting back by the time the younger kids bothered to show up.

But that aside, the thing we've done, and by "we", I mean Cheryl, is that about 4 years ago, she spent every available hour in the weeks leading up to Christmas making some simple drawstring Christmasy bags to "wrap" everything in. Of course, I say they are simple, because I wasn't the one making them. They are really cool, and they sure make the wrapping process so much easier and faster.

They save us a fair amount on wrapping paper and related supplies, but that said, I think the main reason Cheryl made them was for environmental reasons, so there are fewer trees cut down and plastic-ish wrapping paper hitting the landfills.

A reminder we all need from time to time

In case you get down sometimes about President Obama, and let's face it, we probably all have been from on occasion.

Interesting. Makes me realize that in actuality, his actions are the polar opposite of his soaring campaign speeches of 2008, and I don't necessarily mean that in a bad way. Where his speeches were all about hopes and dreams, his actual leadership style is all about the pragmatic and the art of just getting things done, even if the results aren't as perfect as any of us, or either side of the political aisle would want.

One thing we all have to admit. He gets results. And from my point of view, he gets a lot of results I heartily approve of.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

First Day of Christmas: Favorite Local Non-Profit

I'm glad this was the first one on Barbara's list, because it was easy for me to answer and helped inspire me to try to keep up with her. My #1 sort of doesn't count, since it isn't exactly Christmas related, so I'll list a few:

1 - West Chester Friends School

I have to list them first, both because it's true, and because I'm the (unlikely) President of their Board of Directors, a position I take very seriously and am trying to give as much time to as possible without infringing on family responsibilities which are primary, or work, which leads me to:

2 - North American Land Trust

Probably should be #1 since they are my employer and a really great organization that every single employee is extremely proud to be a part of. We 11 employees have been here together for so long and work so well together that (cliche alert) we really do feel like family. And yeah, that means we piss each other off on occasion, but also have a great deal of love and respect for each other.

3 - Downingtown Friends Meeting

Where I've been going to Quaker Meeting since I was 2 months old, according to my Mom's journal (she made me a copy - I didn't peek - honest!) and also an incredible loving group of people that I am fortunate to be able to have as F/friends. I often find myself guilty of putting the members and attenders on a pedestal, which I enjoy, even if it means they disappoint me sometimes.

4 - Lords Pantry

OK, now this is probably more along the lines of what Barb was referring to. This is an incredible group of local hard-working volunteers trying to keep up with the overwhelming need to feed the hundreds, if not thousands, of hungry families in one of the wealthiest counties in the country, and maybe the world.

Your turn - even if you aren't local to Chester County. Which are your faves local to you?

On the first day of Christmas...I procrastinated...but it's a McVickar Holiday Tradition!

With inspiration from my blogger friend, Barbara Bradley Hoyer, and her post here:, I am going to start my 12 days of Christmas here on December 1st, partially because that seems a logical day to sart, and possibly because I've procrastined. I'm also going to skip weekends and december 9th, because I don't anticipate posting on those days.

Here are the topics she suggested and the schedule I'll try to keep to:

December 1: : Favorite Local Nonprofit

December 2: Budget Friendly Ideas

December 5: Holiday Bucket List

December 6: New Traditions for your Family

December 7: Holiday Memories

December 8: Favorite Cookie Recipe

December 12: Favorite Recipes

December 13: How you Green the Holidays

December 14: Favorite Local Place to Visit

December 15: You decide the topic

December 16: Your Grown up Christmas List

December 19: Open House (Show off your decorating!)

I hope folks will comments either here or on my facebook page:!/jmcvickar with their own answers!

Not that you spend much time looking at his hair anyway

This is solely for your benefit, Laur:

Monday, November 21, 2011

But then, Michael Vick fits that category too, which some may argue that Satan is involved as well

You miight not like Tim Tebow for his somewhat uncomfortably deep religious convictions, but there might be no better proof of a higher power than the fact that he is not only still in the National Football League, but has actually won a few games.

Friday, November 18, 2011

And OK, not when I had an Evening Bulletin paper route either, though I did complain about the thermometer setting quite often

Three things that have happened in every place I've ever worked:

1 - Staff complains about a lack of communication

2 - People can't agree on the thermometer setting

3 - Someone puts up a sign over the kitchen sink saying "Your mother doesn't work here, clean up after yourself!"

Well, except when I worked at the paper mill, seeing as how people's kitchens were in their lunch buckets.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Well, from me anyway.

Yet another reason I'm hoping Jon Hunstman comes out of nowhere to win the R nomination:

Sadly, the only way he can get any attention.

Well, actually, now it's both.

It used to be that I couldn't hear the name "Rick Santorum" without being repulsed. Now I can't hear the word "froth" without the same reaction.

And if you don't know why, google either one.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I protest those who protest the protestors!

Interesting to me that where we had all feared the Occupy Wall Street protestors might turn violent at some point and lose any support they may have generated from all walks of life and corners of the world, it was in fact, the Oakland Police who lost control of themselves first.

(Yes, 7, not 17 or even 37.)

With the occasional entry to this blog as an example, I like to think I sometimes look at things differently from the way they are usually seen. But if that is so, I also need to accept/admit that I am way slower to reach some other conclusions, or accept common wisdom that everyone else learned and understood when they were, like, 7.

I always thought I knew what folks meant by Don't judge a book by its cover. Or at least, I guess I just used a narrow definition of it that had more to do with blacks or minorities in general, which in retrospect, seems kind of racist or maybe just condescending or patronizing on my part in a small way: Yes, yes, they are just like me! I like to think THAT is common widom now, tho that's probably naive.

But at some point, I wish I could remember the exact moment, in the past few weeks, I realized it also includes fat, nerdy, ugly, lopsided people of all random coverings. I realized I'd be much more drawn, for instance, to a person at a party who I found attractive or who had some sort of seeming gravitas. Or I'd look at someone on the street who would generally be affixed the technical term of Loser, and immediately discount anything they might have to add to my general wherewithal or understanding of the world.

Also in retrospect, I'd like to apologize to all those losers...equally interesting people. In the end, I wonder if I've hurt the people I treated so brusquely or myself more, not just from a karma standpoint, but on all the knowledge and insight I've missed and avoided absorbing.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Well, an old-style cartoon, not The Simpsons so much

Remember the opening to the Wonderful World of Disney, when Tinkerbell would come out and use her little wand to splash beautiful colors all over the sky? No? Well this is the closest online image I could find, taking the risk that Disney lawyers won't hunt me down to sue me for unlawful use of a copyright (Unintended consequence - it might just double or triple my readership!):

Anyway, that is what it felt like driving down rte 282 from up near Glenmoore and Lyndell down to Downingtown this morning. It feels like every corner I rounded (come to think of it, how can one "round a corner"?!), there was a new splash of incredible colors. I felt like I was in a cartoon practically.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Oh, and any Monkees album obviously

I hate to jump late onto a bandwagon after everyone else has already discovered a new person or TV show or movie. I also have been proud and somewhat snobbish never to fall in love with the Josh Groban types - who sound really good but have no real edge to them. Sort of like an artist who is technically perfect at painting a scene so that it practically looks like a photograph, but has no feel to it, no soul, no creative interpretation.

So, if only for those two reasons, i'm embarrassed to admit that I have yet to hear Adele sing a song that I don't really want to hear all the way through. That girl can sing.

And the previous times someone new or perhaps I should say someone current has come out with an album I've felt similarly about were:
Eminen - The Real Slim Shady album
Pink - M!ssundaztood
and especially Green Day's American Idiot.

And in each case, they went on to win Album of the Year.

So, thinking about that, I went on to pck my top albums of all time, not in order:

American Idiot - Green Day
Born to Run - Buh-ruuuce
Deja Vu - CSNY
Any Beatles album pretty much, but if I had to choose one, it'd be Let It Be, since I bought it for like .50 in college and played it over and over and over

Some are just barely not on the list, including only a few that come immediately to mind, like Mizundaztood, Good Vibrations, and a bunch of soundtracks:
- Oh Brother Whereartthou
- West Side Story
- American Graffiti

I'll bet her dress is pretty though

Cheryl gets a kick out of my appreciation and borderline attraction to women of an advanced age, who don't smother themselves in bright red lipstick and big ovals of rouge on their cheeks and who dye their hair colors not normally even found in a crayola box.  I think it probably stems from my upbringing and being surrounded by Quaker women, for whom there is no shame in letting their hair go gray and leaving their house, or even their bathrooms in the morning, without caking on the makeup.

I don't even understand what it is these doyennes are trying to accomplish. Are they trying to look young? The whole recapture the beauty of their youth sorta deal? Or do they just think that is a good look?

I was reminded of this whole subject by this recent story in Huffington Post:

"The beauty of being 90 is that you stop caring -- what people think about you, who you might offend, how crazy your clothes look.

Which is why Iris Apfel, the lovable nonagenarian doyenne with the oversized spectacles and the priceless bon mots, is totally worth listening to. The "geriatric starlet" spoke to the Telegraph and had some choice words about the current state of fashion:

"Now when I walk down Fifth Avenue in the summertime I just want to throw up. It seems that the fatter and uglier people are, the fewer clothes they wear. The shorts and flip-flops and tight jeans on butts that go from here to Poughkeepsie."

The feisty fashionista added:

"I always say they should put people in jail for wearing clothes like that. Especially stretch jeans over size 10 -- they should be outlawed. Ten years ago people were starting to look like slobs in New York, now it's an epidemic."

We'd say that Apfel is being unusually harsh, but she has been around to see a bad trend or two. And these days there are some particularly bad ones, she says, on the red carpet:
"At the Golden Globes and Oscars they all look alike - it seems like they're all wearing the same nightgown and this year nobody had any jewellery at all. Only Helen Mirren was wearing a beautiful necklace, but even she got it wrong because the necklace just ruined the dress. I think the designer must have wanted to kill himself when he saw her."

OK. So that's fine. An older woman with a sense of style and a strong opinion. All good so far...until we see a recent photo:

Friday, October 21, 2011

Not sure I could handle the heels though

Who needs Paris to set fashion trends? I vote we let Christina Aguilera decide for all of us:

(click to enlarge, tho judging the size of her thighs...oh never mind)

And although I don't have a picture to prove it, there was a young West Chester University Co-ed walking through town this afternoon, who was wearing a pair of what - tights? something incredibly thin and skintight, that revealed pretty much every little curve, bend, and crevice of her very attractive lower-half as she walked into the Student Housing office on High Street, and I would just like to personally thank her for that, I mean, here, not face-to-face, dear!

The headline we've been waiting to see for 10 long years


Obama Announces Iraq Troops Will Be Withdrawn By End Of This Year

Thank you, Mr. President.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

"Now" is my favorite time of year.

As much I love snow, and I do, and am consistently overwhelmed by the wonder of it all, I finally realized today on my drive into work that I am even more awed by the fall colors.

It made me think of fireworks and how this season is kind of like the grand finale of a fireworks show, after its starts slowly in spring, is consistently beautiful through the summer, before it goes really nuts in the fall. Then the metaphorical white (ashes?) falls back to earth through dead of winter.

Anyway, it all sure is beautiful.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

There was an old woman who lived in the media spotlight...

I don't know why it took me so long to figure out why Michelle Bachmann is so batshit crazy, when she includes the answer pretty much every time she answers a question in these uproarious "debates" the Rs have been having, and when it's right here in her wiki bio:

"Bachmann and her husband have five children...(and) Bachmann and her husband have also provided foster care for 23 other children, all teenage girls."

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

It's enough to make me almost want an IPod. Almost.

I have my car radio preset to 7 different music stations, 8 if you include the jazz/classical WRTI, and it's amazing how often I flip from station to station looking for one song I want to listen to.

I propose a national law that local stations in each market agree in advance that one will be playing a Beatles song at any given time.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Taking the risk of cutting my readership by 50% in one fell post

Huffington Post articles I can only wish I had more time to read:

Sharon Osbourne's Style Evolution

If it upsets you that I didn't provide the link, please don't ever come to this site again.

And they're 1-4 now, so we're probably good for at least another year

Having just completed our 31st (We had our first one in 1980, then skipped a year and have had one every year since) annual Friends Fall Festival at Downingtown Friends Meeting this past Sunday, it seems as good a time as any to post this, even though what I wrote has very little to do with the festival, except that this first appeared in the Festival Almanac, which is no longer published.

The FFF Coordinator, Bob Santangelo, dug it out, asked for my permission and posted it to the Meeting's website: , but here it is if you don't want to link there:

Thoughts During Meeting

by Jamie McVickar

People sometimes ask me what I think about while sitting in a Quaker Meeting for Worship where there is no pastor to guide us in our thoughts and prayers. Depending on who is asking and what depth of answer I think they are expecting, I usually answer either by detailing the Quaker philosophy or by telling them that I simply think about whatever comes to mind. Those thoughts may range anywhere from trying to figure out the best batting order for the co-ed softball team I coach to thinking about how to change my attitude towards someone at work that I'm havinga particularly hard time getting along with.

One example of my process in Meeting for Worship is a good example of how one can go back and forth between spiritual and practical while drawing particularly from the people in meeting.

One cold Sunday morning in early December, I found my mind wandering from subject to subject, not really settling on any one topic when the woman sitting directly in front of me stood up to speak. She spoke of a recent computer conference in New York City she had attended. The seminar leader spent the final day of the week long conference detailing the role of computers in the nuclear arms race. The leader concluded the seminar by illustrating the likelihood of some sort of computer error unintentionally setting off a nuclear disaster. The odds of this happening, in our lifetime, the leader claimed, is roughly equivalent to the chances of our favorite foot-ball team winning the Super Bowl.
 Having thus finished sharing her message, the woman sat down. Just then, two rows in front of her, a young child no more than one or two years old awoke from a nap in his mother's lap and began crying. Summoning all the spirituality in me, I saw this as a symbolic message from God showing us that we must do all we can to fight such an unfortunate possibility because of our children and the future they would not have a chance to experience. I began to think of the nuclear arms race and wars in general and what I might do to prevent them. I thought of writing my Congressmen and starting petitions and joining no-nuke groups. As my commitment grew, so did the intensity of the wailing of the child who had set me off on this activist tangent. Finally the mother decided the child was being too disruptive to the Meeting's silence and picked him up to carry him out. It was then that I realized that the green shirt the child was wearing was a Philadelphia Eagles T-shirt. Reflecting back to the message, I reconsidered God's symbolism and decided perhaps we aren't in as much danger as I had originally thought. The Eagles lost that afternoon 33-14.

I'm sure I thought that quite clever when I originally wrote it, but when Bob sent it back to me last year, many years after I'd originally written it, I didn't understand it all until i read it a second time. And then I thought, how facile, yet clever.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Yet to be seen is whether they also lead the majors in 2011 playoff wins, which is all I really care about

It isn't so much that this is surprisingly, or necessarily even all that interesting. (Not that that has been a criterion for maybe 90% of my posts.) But I want this here so in years ahead and I can look back on it and shake my head in amazement:


By nearly every measure, the Phillies’ starting rotation dominated the majors in 2011: lowest ERA (2.86), lowest FIP (2.98), highest percentage of first pitch strikes (63.5), highest K/9 (7.88); highest K/BB (4.22), lowest WHIP (1.11), most complete games (18), most shut outs (7), and highest WAR (25.8).

On the other hand, Hedge Fund managers and Big Oil execs Are fully behind them

From the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll:

Barack Obama has jumped to a 15-point lead over the Republicans in Congress in trust to handle job creation, a sign the beleaguered president’s $450 billion jobs package has hit its mark in public opinion.
Before proposing the American Jobs Act, Obama and Republicans were trusted equally on job creation—an even split of 40% each. Now the numbers are 49%-34%, so not only has Obama gained, but Republicans have lost.
In addition to majority support for his jobs plan (52% to 36%), the poll showed nearly three-fifths of Americans think Obama's jobs plan will create jobs (58% to 39%).

This is so unfair. The Rs haven't even proposed anything to address job creation, so how can they be judged on it. I mean they've only had power in the House for a year now and there are so many millionnaires to protect before they get to silly things that help the middle- and working-class.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

And now, this message from the American Friends Service Committee

As an organization devoted to nonviolence and social justice, the American Friends Service Committee is encouraged by the recent wave of nonviolent actions that have swept from Wall Street across the country highlighting economic inequities.
At this point, no one knows whether this wave of actions will continue and give birth to a larger movement. But, in the meantime, we encourage those AFSC staff members and volunteers who have the interest and ability to participate, provided that the actions are nonviolent, that they target issues rather than specific individuals, and that they lift up the dignity of all individuals. We also encourage staff members to help others see connections between economic injustices, militarism, and a punishment-oriented justice system.

We also encourage staff members and volunteers so engaged to explore whether there are unmet needs or roles the AFSC can play to broaden and deepen the impact of these actions in ways consistent with the values and goals of the organization. Such roles may include provision of material assistance, faithful observers, nonviolence training, and meeting places.

And you do NOT want to see my skin crawling anywhere!

I have to admit being both relieved and disappointed that Chris Christie has once and for all declared that he isn't entering the Presidential race for 2012.

I'm relieved because I think he might have smoked President Obama next November. I'm disappointed because, well, brace yourself...even I have to admit I kind of like the guy.

But the biggest reason I'm disappointed is that all the current Republican candidates just scare me, that they might win and actually implement some of the outrageous policies they have proferred. Mitt Romney is the only one whose policies aren't so much scary, at least not in the Rick "I will send troops into Mexico to fight the drug war" Perry does, but the thought of having to listen to him for the next 4 years makes my skin crawl.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

At least it beats having to hold down the Rush Limbaugh float

Doesn't President Obama have more important things to do on Thanksgiving than to hold down the Chris Christie float before the start of the Macy's Parade?

Of course, if the starters all just pitch shutouts and hit solo homers, that addresses all issues

A thought I had driving in to work this morning…I was glad the NL won the all star game, in case the Phils get to the World Series, primarily because it would keep David Ortiz on the bench (and the Phils don’t have a good DH candidate). Aside from the fact that it’s far less likely that Ortiz will make it that far, given the Red Sox delicious collapse, I realized that it will kind of hurt the Ps too. They need their starters to go as far as possible, given the state of their bullpen, but considering all the 1-1 games they’re likely to be in, or 1-2 and 1-3 games, they’ll have to take their SPs out earlier for pinch hitters where they won’t in games in AL parks.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Even more amazingly, I love all the sequels too!

Some people, incredibly to me, like to read the last few pages of a book to find out how things are going to turn out before they go back to start at the beginning. That concept is to me even more perplexing than voting Republican.

That said, there is one story that I already know the ending to, but still love watching the story unfold right from the start.

And that is, of course, the Eagles football season.

But hey - we gave them some free desert land to farm, what's the prablem?!

Not entirely sure why I thought of this this morning, but I wonder what Native American Indians think when they have heard their whole lives to get over the genocide their people endured over the 500 years since we white folks first settled here, but when we lose a tiny fraction of our population on September 11, 2001, the rallying cry is "We will never forget!".

So, OK, I got it. I'm appreciative. Now snap the hell out of it.

Watching the Phillies this past week, or more honestly, not watching them, but hearing about their 7 straight losses, OK, I watched a little, reminds me of how fortunate we Phans are to be following such an amazing team. And even more so, it reminds me of the first 50 years of my life, when they generally stunk, and a 7-game losing sreak was sort of the norm.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Vampires and Zombies just don't fascinate me. Makes me wonder if I am one.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I'll look at life from both sides now, but in a different way than Troy Davis is about to

Two sides to this race issue. Without knowing many, ok, any, of the facts of this controversial case, I'll bet one of the main reasons this man:

is scheduled to die in a few hours is because he is black.

And further, I'm even more certain that the main reason so many white folks are so upset about this is because he looks so intelligent, and not like the "typical" inner-city ghetto black kid. Same with Mustafa Abu-Jamal, or whatever his name is.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Regrets...I have a, in second thought, actually, I don't really have any

I was thinking driving home last night how I wish Cheryl and I had been married since we were in our 20's, like for the past 30 years or so, and we would have had so much more time together, and we would know each other even better than we already do. But then I thought of all the fun times I had before I met Cheryl and decided that I like it just the way it happened.

Of course, that makes it seem like there were only rollicking bachelor-life good times, when, believe me, those fun times were more than balanced out by all the lonely and bad times, tho I have to force myself to remember them. I mostly just remember the fun stuff.  But still, I do wish we'd been together much longer somehow. I guess another way to say it is that I sure look forward to the next 30+ years of being with her.

And as Cheryl likes to say, she doesn't regret anything that happened in her "previous life...lives" having been married twice before, because not only did it help make her the person she is today, but, as I like to remind her, being married before also gave her two awesome kids.

Monday, September 19, 2011

That's OK though really, I have all the sperm I needed anyway, thanks.

I feel or something! From The Telegraph in London:

Redheads Turned Down By Sperm Bank

"The largest sperm bank in the world is saying no thanks to potential redheaded sperm donors.Cryos International sperm bank has started to turn down redheaded applicants because of a lack of demand, The Telegraph reports.

 The Atlantic wonders if the lack of demand could be because of the teasing redheaded children sometimes have to put up with. HuffPost reporter Katherine Bindley blogs that being a redhead is a love-hate relationship, and points out how negative feelings towards redheads is a prejudice "that dates back, globally, at least to ancient Egypt and personally, to approximately the time I started forming memories." The Atlantic also notes that the New York Times published an article about redheads being more sensitive to physical pain."

Ah, but the emotional pain is what really hits me, I feel like I'm wait. More details emerge:

"Ole Schou, Cryos's director, said that there had been a surge (A Surge?! Oh...ah!) in donations in recent years, allowing the facility to become much more picky about its donors.

"There are too many redheads in relation to demand," he told told Danish newspaper Ekstrabladet."

Now I just feel like a commodity, like so many grapes...or strawberries, as it were.

"Mr Schou said the only reliable demand for sperm from redheaded donors from Ireland, where he said it sold “like hot cakes”."

Oh, the Irish - we're such a reliable people. OK so then, I'm not selling like strawberries, but freaking pancakes. Potato pancakes, maybe?

"Cryos’s stores have now reached their peak capacity of 70 litres of semen."

OK, eiuw. Now I'm just sorry I brought the whole thing up, and truth be told there is only a small percentage of folks who even know I ever was a redhead, well, except those who've seen me in the altogether, which is an even smaller number than the people who ever remember when I had red head hair up on top anyway.

But let's just keep away from comparing sizes of anything, thanks.

Friday, September 16, 2011

But it's so topsy-turvy!

Your quiz today: Under whose Presidency, GW Bush, or President Obama, did private sector jobs increase (over 1.2 million) while government jobs decreased (by almost 600,000)? And under whose did government jobs increase (by over 1.7 million!), while we lost private sector jobs (653,000). You sure won't see this covered in the conservative mainstream press, now will you?

Here's the direct link form Daily Kos: John Boehner's tired old jobs rhetoric collides with reality

Here are the facts:

So during the Bush presidency, the private sector lost jobs while the public sector gained jobs. And since the end of the recession (as determined by the National Bureau of Economic Research), the private sector has gained jobs while the public sector lost jobs.

Paging all Charlies from Oxford! Step forward, sir, and identify yourself!

I find it ironic that just a few weeks after the Daily Local News did a week-long series on bullying, for which it will no doubt win industry awards, they allowed this to get into print after a letter I'd written appeared in the paper:

"In reference to Tuesday, September 6, editorial page, (sic) once again as in numerous times before, a letter to the editor written by Jamie McVickar. (sic) I resent his anti-American comments and his slurs on Republicans and especially conservative Republicans. As a conservative Republican, I would challenge McVickar to stand up and be a man and make his comments to my face. I doubt he has got the guts to do that. he hides behind his pen and paper as most cowards do."

 - Charlie of Oxford

What a tough guy. Challenging me without letting me know how to get in touch with him. Probably as tough as the Rush Limbaugh, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld chickenhawks who like sending our kids to war when they have never been there themselves. If I could get in touch with him, I would...and I'd challenge him ight have lunch with me sometime.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I want a quiz like this every day!

This is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen on Facebook. It was a status posted by the amazing Jill whose blog "A Day in the Life of a Sexologist" is posted in the upper right hand corner of this blog...and who I think is going to become incredibly successful, famous and wealthy sometime in the next 12 months.

First I'll post her question and all the 30+ responses, and then add my thoughts at the bottom:

Jill At Feminique

Tyler and I are having a debate: what is more intimate- tittie fucking or kissing? If you and your partner broke up for one night and got back together, would you be more upset to learn they kissed someone else, or tittie fucked someone else? Weigh in with your opinion.

Marj Pike Hatzell kissing. I could care less about tittie fucking, honestly.

Kelly Noblitt Grube Kissed. Hands down.

Kayla Chenoweth How is titty fucking intimate

Michelle Durcholz Lemon Kissing

Jill At Feminique Follow up question: can there ever be a random meaningless kiss or is kissing necessarily intimate?

Lauren Reinhart I'd be more pissed about the titty fucking, especially if they came.

Kayla Chenoweth I think men should start commenting on this status. Clearly women are more prone to be pissed about kissing (with the exception of Miss Lauren Reinhart). I'm interested in seeing the dudes' comments

Doug Knepp kissing is more intimate ... you kiss from your soul

Lauren Reinhart I'm a Mrs, actually :D

Kelly Noblitt Grube Yes, there can be a random meaningless kiss. But when compared to tittie fucking or even fucking someone else.....i'd rather my partner do that vs kiss someone else.

Carra Sponheimer Intimate..

Doug Knepp I could tittie fuck any woman ... its just the means to the end .. I have met many women that I would never share a kiss with

Kelly Noblitt Grube Exactly Doug!

Doug Knepp that said ... the woman I am sharing a bed with should expect more than a kiss

Kelly Noblitt Grube TBH.....a carnal affair I could forgive so much easier than an emotional one.

Carra Sponheimer If it involved fucking then I would pist ..

Tom Burke Kissing could be a moment of weakness. Otherwise, both are naked and a lot more thought went into it... lots of chances to change minds. I'd be less upset about the kissing.

Dan Yarnall Tittie fuck

Lyndsay Mercier I think I can see both as being intimate...kissing is definitely intimate, but it's possible to just have a meaningless peck or a drunken kiss at a bar or something that would have zero emotion. Titty-f'ing isn't filled with romance obviously, but it does involve being at least partly nude together, being alone with lustful intentions, and probably an orgasm which I think I would be pretty upset about. I don't like either of I guess I'm just the jealous type!

Kelly Noblitt Grube I find it interesting that the guys are going with tittie fuck. Is it b/c of the "marking of territory" by another male to put it crudely? Or is it something else?

Robin Owens I did not have sexual relations with that woman....( in my Bill Clinton voice) tittie fucking big NO!!!

Jamie P. McVickar Perhaps you should define what you mean by intimate, Jill. It may be that men and women would define that word differently. It fascinates me though that women here by and large, so to speak, (bi and large?) would be more upset bytheir guy kissing than TF-ing another woman.

Rich Yarnall If you brake up you are giving up your rights and anything can be intimidating if you still have feelings.. Both can be meaningless but you learn so much more about a person when you kiss them

Barry Rabin If my wife did either with another woman, I'd at least expect her to bring back the video! :)

Christopher M Schultz I think that kissing is way more intimate, I think tittie fucking is pointless unless she is licking/sucking the tip. So which is worse would depend on the level of skill involved. Either way can you truly be mad if you seriously broke up with him and then got back together.

Allison Conway At first I was going to say kissing, but then I read Tom's comment and it made me remember when my ex cheated on me. It wasn't the cheating that made me the most upset, it was the idea that every second was a chance for him to stop or change his mind but he never did. So, I think that tittie fucking is a lot more intimate because you have made the decision to go past kissing, clothes, location, etc.

Worley Turner They both bother me to the same extent. Cheating is cheating. Any kind of sexual touch with another person is cheating and id be sick about either one.

Justin-Paul Killen I think more effort goes into the tittie fucking. And it would make you wonder where the guy finished. Getting cheated on sucks no matter what. But getting naked takes it to a higher level.

Joe Bellesorte Kissing i would think of as intimate and romantic, Titty fucking is intimate on a sexual level. I would NEVER believe anyone if they told me they went out and just kissed someone for the night, no one stops at kissing on a one night encounter. If it were to happen, it would be because there is a strong emotional connection going on or somebody got uncomfortable and did not allow things to go further. Titty fucking is on the same level as sex. I don't think saying you went out and titty fucked someone makes it any better then having sex with them. That being said, i would be more upset about the TFing. I would be upset about the kissing if it was emotional, but probably not as much as the TFing. This leads me to another question, whats worse, a blowjob or titty fuck? From a man's and women' perspective. One last thing, if you break up for a night do you really want to know what happened? If you both agree to it, you also both agree to complete freedom. Otherwise whats the point if you are gonna work things out anyway? The only reason for breaking up for a night is to be allowed to see other people, and if you cant handle that then you dont do it at all or plan for a longer break up.

Katrina Miller Fallick Kissing, for me, is more affectionate then intimate. I could totally forgive one kiss. Not a big deal at all. Tittie fucking would make me sadder because, as people said, the though that went into it, and the intimacy of being naked. Also, any kind of sex seems more...intentional I guess. It would hurt my self confidence (why am I no good enough) where as a kiss is just...a kiss.

Jill At Feminique This was an interesting 2 hour discussion we had. It's all hypethetical (neither of us kissed/ tf'ed someone else) but the convo started by me saying I value kissing and place it very highly and I don't like to randomly kiss people at bars because I think kissing is special and intimate because you're face to face and you can smell their pheromones and there are two mucus membranes touching so it's more about being in one's body, which is far more invasive in my opinion that titite fucking, because breasts are just ordinary skin, plus you're not face to face. Tyler thought I was crazy that I would be more discriminate in who I would kiss than who I would tittie fuck. I think what is most illuminating about this thread is the large gender gap.

So there ya go. First of all, I want to know if a single person reading this or who has posted above ever particpated in "Tittie-fucking" without there first being kissing involved.

"Hey hey, babee. Wanna go back to my place so I can fuck your tits?"
"Hi. My name's Heather. Do you want to fuck my tits? Just as long as you don't kiss me first! You pig!" 
How would that happen exactly?
OK, so now to the gender thing. This is a perfect illustration of the difference between males and females. First of all, I think once you include the words "tittie fucking" in a sentence, the synapses in a guy's head/s go nuts, so to speak, and there is very little thought or introspection as to what the question really entails. Women see it and see only one word: "intimate". Guys only see two words: "titty" nad "fucking". And women really think it through and think about intimacy and cuddling and special moments. Guys read it and think "oh yeah, I LOVE fuckin' a chick's tits! Sign me up, babe!" So that's what they...we vote for.
But then, if you were to ask a guy to step back and agree on the definition of the word "intimate"...ok, yeah, kissing probably is. But where's the fun in that? Well, besides the pheromone and mucas exchanges and all that.

OK, actually I like kissing too...a LOT...but compared to...OK, I think I've typed out those two words as many times in one post as I can bare. (uh-oh, there go those synapses again...bare?!)

This just in...!

This post is actually kind of a test, but is also an announcement, that, if I understand it correctly, anyone can get an email anytime I post something new to this blog. I am the guinea pig for myself, having signed up to get emails at my yahoo account. If it doesn't work, I'll take this post down, but if it does, see the link at the top of the page to sign up. It looks like it works pretty quickly. Thanks in advance to any of you who do so. I've certainly had plenty of requests for this feature!

Further confusion as to whether a first round pick is a high pick or a low pick

Interesting that in their opening game over the Rams, the Eagles' top picks were benched and the the later picks played:

1st: Danny Watkins (OG) - Did not dress
2nd: Jaiquawn Jarrett (S) - Did not dress
3rd: Curtis Marsh (CB) Did not dress
4th: Casey Matthews (ILB) - Starter
4th: Alex Henery (K) - Starter
5th: Dion Lewis (RB) - Starter
(as kick returner)
5th: Julian Vandervelde (OG) - Not sure
6th: Jason Kelce (C) - Starter
6th: Brian Rolle (OLB) - 4th Linebacker

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Giving good head...lines

Some stories, all I need to do is read the headline to know I have absolutely no interest in reading any further:

Eel Swims Up Man's Penis, Has to Be Surgically Removed

(Go ahead, if you want: )

And some headlines, I only need to get about 3 words into to know, I'm gonna get my click on:

Scarlett Johansson Nude Photos May Be Fake, Are The Latest To Reportedly Leak

And just to show what a good guy I am, here are the photos to which they refer:

Or maybe I just put the link there so I always know where to find it.

And now that I've posted for the day...and looked at those pictures the words of Bert in It's a Wonderful Life, I think I'll go home and see what the wife's doin'.

Sorry to my loyal readers...OK, reader

I've been unable to get to this blog for technical reasons for many weeks now, but I'm back, babee! Thanks to our tech guru, David here at work for getting me hooked up again.

I have a goal now of writing at least one thing every day. Some may be lame, but Earregardless I'm going for it.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Another guest post - also excellent - thanks, Elizabeth!

Hi my name is Elizabeth Norton. I am a mom that is a little out of her element here but I happy to be guest posting on this blog. I asked my husband what I could write on that has to do with a Sport, Politics, and Sex since I am guest blogging on Jamie's Blog. I wasn't sure I was up to tackling the job. I am a pretty conservative person when it comes to sex, I am "confused" (according to my husband) when it comes to politics and I have almost no interest in sports unless the Phillies are winning. In that case I may be slightly delighted. (ok, so I wear a lot of red and act like I have been a "phan" the whole year....don't judge).

Even though I am under qualified to write on these topics because I am clueless. (yes husband Confirmed) We have summed up my post to say this....... (Below is his contribution to this post)
Remember that time when...... Politician, Governor Christie. used New Jersey money to ride in a helicopter to see his son play in a baseball game and how we fought about it? I blame Governor Christie for not getting sex that night. ( you can find my husband on twitter to give him a high five at @DrivesmeCrazy)
Family values are ones that are to be respected. Do I LOOOOVVVVEEE the fact that Governor Christie used state funds to use a helicopter to see a baseball I am sure that the NJ Governor was not landing on the baseball field blind. I am sure he thought through this and knew there would be conversations all over New Jersey like the one that was held in my living room that night, on the radios the following week and in the news that day. Was it wrong? I bet if you ask the son if he shouldn't have come to the game he would have said no. The son has pretty much given to my state "HIS" father. (one more thing that we need is a political driven son alcoholic) One baseball game, that he couldn't even stay the whole time at because of meetings, will be sure to remembered by his son. I call the backlash risk being a good dad! What do you call it? (Tell me in the comments below)

As far as any other actions taken by Governor Christie, I am not so sure about them. He has taken benefits away from a lot of hard working people that will only prove to have issues in the future. If we make the good teachers search for other employment, the good cops become business men, and so and so.......we will only be left with the teachers that could care less of our students and corrupt cops that run our streets. Do we really want that??? (Tell me in the comments below)

New Jersey has been spoiled for a long long long long long long (did I mention LONG time?) It is about time to cut spending but really at what point is the spending that we are doing worth while.....personally I feel education and protection go hand and hand in the world of importance. To cut there is to be cutting of our nose in spite of our face and waving a flag saying NEW JERSEY is stupid.

Governor Christie, next baseball game make sure you are there for your son. Try to take a less expensive mode of transportation to get there....try a train ticket....(ohhh wait the train system in New Jersey SUCKS-add that to your fix to do list....Cape May County doesn't even have a train station) and then after you watch a baseball game think of the people that aren't playing baseball because they are protecting your A$$...

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Guest Post from Rachee!

All I Learned in Life I Learned From the Radio

Editor's note: Hello Blog Friends! I'm Rachee from and I'm putting the "GER!" in swinger baby! I'm posting on Jamie's Blog as a part of a blog swing put together by Elizabeth Norton. I am a mom to a tween (The Bee) and a library chick among other things (want to know more...shameless self promotion...see my blog for more!)

My kid is at that age where sometimes I kinda don't like her. Yup, she's a tween that in between age of young child and teenager and there are days that I am ready to throttle her and days when I just want to hug her. Lately I have been counting my blessings. I work with children daily and am proud of the person that she has become. The Bee is not perfect; she is a regular kid so I was surprised when she told me that she wanted to start watching the news.

I cannot tell a lie; as much as I pretend otherwise, in my household we can tell you more about Oprah than Obama. More about The Dougie than the debt ceiling and more about Beyonce than Boehner. We, I am a pop culture junkies and I have got it bad. It wasn't supposed to be this way; during the last presidential campaign The Bee and I we followed the campaign of Obama more faithfully than any Top Model marathon. Nightly...ish we watched the news and saw what was going on on the world and we kept a few politico type blogs in my RSS reader that we would check out in between playing The Sims and other online games. However one evening The Bee requested that we watch something on Cartoon Network, another night I got caught up in some marathon or another (I'm such a sucker) and the slowly, slowly the local news was replaced with something else, the world news was left unwatched and now I feel like I need to play catch up.

When I mentioned to The Bee that we were going to start actively watching the news, she fully exercised her tween-ness and declared that our television viewings were like the time she spent with her grandfather.

"Mom! She said, "We don't have to know EVERYTHING and besides, I'm a kid!". How can I argue with that? But I remembered that indeed I was the parent and help firm. It's been an interesting experiment. A few months ago we got rid of cable and hadn't done the digital switch thing. When I made the decision I was only focused on the saving money aspect and decreasing the amount of time we, I, spent watching crap TV. I never counted that I would miss that vital time after work spent getting a recap of the day or the chirping of Matt Lauer, Al Roker and Ann Curry in the AM.


To fill the gap I've been listening to NPR. I reasoned something was better than nothing and I am not the biggest fan. The Bee loves Morning Edition. Go Figure! As I rush to make breakfast, slurp coffee and get the day started I keep the radio tuned to our local NPR affiliate and as I listen I've noticed that more and more The Bee is listening with me. When I am yelling at the radio, she has chimed in with an enthusiastic word of of her own. As we drive to school, work, wherever she has asked what a few things mentioned mean. We are by no means politicos but no longer are we total ignorant of current events that are not surrounded by movies and celebrities.

So far so good. At this point in time The Bee and I are by no means well versed in all things politics but we can offer an opinion of world events, can follow along with talk of the debt ceiling and have much to say about local and world events. It's a good start but I can see the tide turning. The other day as we got into the car The Bee mentioned that at The Dad's house her favorite station is a local radio station that she wanted to give a listen to. When I balked at changing the station she looked me in the eye and said, "It's OK. The news will be there later."
Oh tweens!

- Rachee

This was a guest post from Rachee. To read more from her you can find her at

I am so glad you met Rachee! I am not blogging here today. I am at blogging today. I hope you see me there!!!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Tea anyone? No, you're good? Well, the rest of us aren't.

How is it that interest in and self-decribed affiliation with the Tea-Party has dropped, but their influence in Washington has increased?

Monday, July 18, 2011

God blessed us, everyone

I've occasionally debated...with to whether Religion has had more of a net positive or negative affect on the course of world events, and I've finally swung from the negative to the positive, based on this one observation:

Although hundreds of thousands of people have been killed through the years in the name of religion, hundreds of millions have been helped just by folks of any given religious body, be it a Southern Baptist mega-church or a tiny Quaker Meeting, helping each other out in times of woe, when we need it most.

The faith-based charities get attention as does the missionary work in foreign countries to help those less advantaged than us, but in the end, it's the person-to-person love, assistance and attention given to our fellow worshipers, that I really think wouldn't otherwise happen, that really tips the balance for me.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Out right-winging it

Paul Krugman:

"President Obama has made it clear that he’s willing to sign on to a deficit-reduction deal that consists overwhelmingly of spending cuts, and includes draconian cuts in key social programs, up to and including a rise in the age of Medicare eligibility. These are extraordinary concessions. As The Times’s Nate Silver points out, the president has offered deals that are far to the right of what the average American voter prefers — in fact, if anything, they’re a bit to the right of what the average Republican voter prefers!

Yet Republicans are saying no. Indeed, they’re threatening to force a U.S. default, and create an economic crisis, unless they get a completely one-sided deal. And this was entirely predictable.
First of all, the modern G.O.P. fundamentally does not accept the legitimacy of a Democratic presidency — any Democratic presidency. We saw that under Bill Clinton, and we saw it again as soon as Mr. Obama took office.
As a result, Republicans are automatically against anything the president wants, even if they have supported similar proposals in the past. Mitt Romney’s health care plan became a tyrannical assault on American freedom when put in place by that man in the White House. And the same logic applies to the proposed debt deals."

Dailykos: "Yes, yes, Paul Krugman is a crazy Nobel Prize-winning maniac. But even many Republicans—even many George W. Bush-serving Republicans—have been saying the same thing. Some have been all but pleading for Republicans to take a damn deal already.
None of the stuff of this presidency is controversial, in fact (it's certainly hardly "socialist" or even left of center) except insofar as it's a Democrat proposing it. That's all it takes. If a Republican president proposed a few trillion dollars of deficit reduction (not that one would, based on the plain historical evidence, but let's just go with the premise), he would presumably be lauded as the Great And True Hero of Conservatism. When Republicans tried to tackle healthcare, during the Clinton years, what they came up with as their preferred conservative solution looked a great deal like what Romney did, and then what Obama did. Then it was sound and business-friendly: now it's socialism and utterly intolerable. It's been, what, only a decade and change?

The finest recent example, though, has been the battle against the latest socialist conspiracy: efficient light bulbs. It literally was a Bush-era plan. From 2007. And yes, Bush signed it. Four short years later, those efficiency standards must be an infringement because a group of conservative crackpots got together and decided that, well, it just plain must be.

Bad: I'm not sure there's any way to express just how silly these people are. Worse: even now, most of our press is bound and determined not to point that out."

Serving whine by (not at a) party...and gender

I guess everyone has a certain number of whiners in their life. I certainly know quite a few, people Cheryl calls the "They done me wrong gang". People who seem to always be complaining about one thing or another, and usually because of someone or something that is conspiring against them.

It struck me today that the vast majority of women I know who fit in this category are all Dems and the vast majority of men I know who are like this are Republicans.

And it also reminds me of something I saw in an article recently that I really liked: "The only thing you have complete control over is your attitude."

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I love you, Woman!

Remember how it used to be so verboten for a man, heterosexual or otherwise, to tell another man that he loved him? It's still a little unusual, but not unheard of. I can thnk of a couple guys I've said it to - Mike Rellahan, Jim Burger and Martin Bradfield immediately come to mind. There are many others I could as well - Dave Nich, Jim Daly. I don't know if I ever said it to Dennis before I died but I hope and think so. I know he knew it anyway.

It struck me yesterday, when I was wishing my friend since kindergarten, Lisa (Butz) Hart, a happy birthday, that it would probably not be okay to tell her I love her. I know that she would know what I meant and would correctly read absolutely nothng into it, but if I put that on FB, I had no doubt that someone would see it and wonder about it.

So in thinking about it more today, I sent it to her in a private message, saying: "Hey, I was going to say this in my happy birthday note, but it seemed too public, so (i'll) say it (here) without anyone trying to read something into it that isn't there. A birthday seems the easiest time to say it: I love you, Lisa! I'm so glad you're an enduring part of my life, if too occasional and not enough frequent. I'm so lucky to have people like you and Jeannie and Livvy whom I feel so close to, kind of a semi-, maybe completely unconditional love thing, that everyone should have plenty of in their lives. So thanks for that. :-) "

It's just a shame I hesitate before saying that to anyone at anytime I feel it.

Also known as Bizarro World

From the dailykos:

So, just to recap: In Far-Right Republican World…

Blowing up the U.S. economy is preferable to raising taxes a little bit on the richest Americans to help stabilize the U.S. economy.

Spending taxpayer money to help the poor and elderly is bad, but spending taxpayer money on subsidies for mega-profitable industries that don’t need them is good.

"All men are created equal" means all men. Except the gay ones.

"Our #1 priority is jobs jobs jobs" means "Our #1 priority is anything but jobs jobs jobs."

The fact that voter fraud is not a problem means voter fraud is a huge problem.

The fact that climate change and oil dependence are huge problems means climate change and oil dependence are not problems.

George Bush wasn't president for eight years---we went straight from America-destroyer Bill Clinton to America-destroyer Barack Obama.

If Republicans in the House and Senate vote to end Medicare in favor of health care by coupons, and it turns out to be a blunder of epic proportions, it never happened.

Rupert Murdoch is the de facto Minister of Information

Talk of secession is taken seriously.

Everything you need to know about science is in the Bible.

Suffering builds character, which is why we need more of it.

The prime directive is the destruction of one citizen---the guy in the White House---even if it comes at the expense of the other 311,747,129 citizens.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Can we agree that we just never agree

In the course of a facebook "conversation" about Ds vs R's and their sources of information, I was recently surprised to hear the same conservative facebook friend I referred to in the post below as being upset at how all her D friends think exactly alike, based on what moveon and dailykos tell us to think and I was shocked. As proof of her conclusion, she said she receives constant emails from various D sources and they all say the same things.

I was shocked that she'd said that, partly because her evidence was so specious, but also because I wished she were right! It could never have been more true what Will Rogers said about not being a member of an organized political party, because he was a Democrat.

I wish we Ds were in as lock step as the Rs. I see that as a strength of theirs and a weakness of Ds. I actually envy them for that, tho it strikes me regularly that I rarely ever hear any original thoughts from my conservative friends that didn't first come form the Rush Limbaugh/Fox/Mitch McConnell crowd.

I have another facebook R friend who thinks I am only progressive in my thinking and to declare that I am a moderate is at best disengenuous and at worst, a lie. And it got me to thinking about all the beliefs that are usually attributed to Ds that you'll virtually never hear me defending or taking up the cause for:

Global Climate Change
Gov't funding for NPR
Opposition to merit-based pay for teachers
The Federal Department of Education...or Commerce
Carte blanche gov't spending
Keeping Social Security and Medicare exactly the way they are now

I'm not saying I necessarily support or oppose any of those things, but I do know that you can't put me in lock step agreement with typical left-wing talking points on any of them. ANd I know there are more, so I'll add to that list as I think of them...just please don't tell moveon lest I get kicked out of our party.

Or maybe I'm just too damn dumb to understand

Recently a conservative facebook friend posted a link to her facebook page entitled: "The science is settled: US liberals really are the dumbest creatures on the planet".

And I have to admit, it kind of, well, smarted. As I tried to think why, I decided it was for two reasons.

1 - I had more respect for her than to post such a thing. It was more insulting to her than it was to liberals, and I didn't like thinking that way about her. I felt my respect diminish and it made me feel bad to feel that way. I really felt kind of down after I saw it and was too embarrassed for her to even reply to her post.

2 - More importantly, it provided me a look at how I post things on Facebook, making me wonder if I've ever stooped to such levels, and without remembering anything specific, I have to conclude that I probably have.

I think in general, the links I post to FB are meant to educate moderates to things they don't usually have access to through the conservative mainstream media, who generally post what the corporate world wants them to know. Also impacting the media? How incredibly inept Dems are at getting out a unified or even coherent, well-articulated message.

So, to my handful of loyal readers, of which the friend I referred to above is one, if I post anything as divisive or mean-spirited as that, please refer me back to this post and ask me as politely as possible, but not as impolitely as I deserve, to take it down, and to apologize.

For once Bill Kristol has it right

Contrary To GOP Claims, U.S. Has Second Lowest Corporate Taxes In The Developed World

During negotiations regarding raising the nation’s debt limit, congressional Republicans have defended tax loopholes for corporations, claiming that America has a high corporate tax rate that is stifling economic growth and job creation. But the Center for Tax Justice (CTJ) has crunched the most recent data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Office of Management and Budget, and the Census Bureau, and finds that “the U.S. is already one of the least taxed countries for corporations in the developed world.”
As a share of GDP, the U.S. had the second lowest tax rate, behind only Iceland. This statistic flips on its head the often-repeated Republican charge that America has the second highest corporate tax rate in the world (which is only true on paper). In 2009, U.S. corporate taxes had fallen to only 1.3 percent of GDP, from 4 percent in 1965.
Conservatives love to point out that other OECD countries have lowered their corporate tax rates in recent years, but they conveniently ignore that “these countries have also closed corporate tax loopholes while the U.S. has expanded them.” As CAP Director for Tax and Budget Policy Michael Linden has noted, the U.S. is actually a very low-tax country across the board.
Recently, conservative commentator Bill Kristol chastised his own party for pretending that lowering the corporate tax rate is a cure-all for America’s economic woes. On Fox News Sunday, he interrupted a panelist who again tried to assert the U.S. is suffering from a high corporate tax rate: “Republicans are making a mistake if they focus on big businesses and corporate tax rates. Corporations have a ton of cash. The corporate tax rate is not killing big business in America.”

The GOP presidential candidates have almost uniformly introduced proposals to radically lower the U.S. corporate tax rate. For instance, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) wants to reduce the corporate tax rate to 15 percent and eliminate all taxes on capital gains, dividends, interest income and inheritance. CTJ put the issue succinctly in a tweet this morning: “Dear US Corporations: You pay 2nd LOWEST tax rate in industrial world, so quit whining or move to Iceland.”

That's some crazy shit, man

Things I spend way to much time thinking of: What makes the feces of a bat any crazier than anyone else's? And just how crazy can it be anyway?

Werthmore prediction

Some year, before Jason Werth's enormous contract comes to an end, the Nationals will finish ahead of the Phillies in the standings. I'm predicting 2014.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer optimists, some grumps.

I'm sorry, but on June 29th, a week into summer, you're not allowed to declare that the summer is just flying by, as my dentist did this morning.

And why does it feel like winter doesn't end until the temperatures get over 60 degrees or more, but summer ends on Labor Day, regardless of how nice it is the next two months?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

And no the sentence has nothing to do with admitting I'm wro...that I made a mista...You know what I mean.

There are times when it would be easier for me to move a 50 pound rock than to utter a single sentence.

And maybe that's the most bizarre sexual preference of all!

I have written anything about sex on here for awhile, but haven't had any complaints. I guess that either means no one is reading, or readers would just as soon not hear any more of my opinions on the topic.

Assuming it's the former, and ignoring the latter, even if it is true, here is my random sex thought for the week, cuz you know, I only think about sex once every week or two.

One of my favorite quotations is from William Somerset Maugham, who said "There is hardly anyone whose sexual life, if it were broadcast, would not fill the world at large with surprise and horror."

That is something that has stayed with me for a long while, and has made me wonder why we are, as a society, so prudish/intolerant, hmm...there's a better word, ah yes - repressed! - of or about people who like weird stuff sexually and makes me wonder if it's possible that everyone...EVERY single person...has something, some sexual turn-on that runs outside the norm, or at least the norm as it's been defined in our current way of thinking: Puritan stuff, missionary position and nothing more type stuff.
It could be some little thing that is a turn-on, or it could be something really bizarre. I still remember reading about stuff in my Abnormal Psych class that I don't even want to repeat here, that is not worse than pedophelia, since after all, nothing is in my book, but seems far more out there.
All that said, I remember seeing a link on some website I went to one time about people who consider themselves a-sexual. I looked into it a little and found that there are people who really do think of themselves that way. In some ways, I envy them - I'm sure they are a far more productive member of society than the rest of us! But for the most part, I pity them. Can you imagine - yuk!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Today's conclusion and over-simplification: Those on the Right think Government is the problem. Those of us primarily to the Left think the corporations who are most responsible for who gets elected and make the laws that primarily benefit those same corporations are the bigger problem.

And to further the point, it's my sense that there are some who like to just rail at the government without looking a little deeper as to why our politicians continually disappoint us, and I don't mean in the David Vitter/John Ensign/Anthony ...Weiner sense. I mean the laws, whether it be in terms of Obamacare, the weak finance reform bills, the weakening of the environmental laws, the strengthening of Big Oil and Wall Street and the banking industry, can all be linked back to who put the people in office who approved those sorry bills - the corporations. And as you can guess, it's my sense that it's primarily republicans and those who vote for them that enable such governmental disasters. It consistently feels like it's corporations first, people second, all based on the fallacy that we need to prop up the super rich who control those corporation so they'll create jobs...which worked far better when Clinton was in office than when Bush and his team were abusing the country so consistently.

That said, Obama will clean any of their respective clocks

Charlie's comment below reminds me that I should post here what I had also put on Facebook a few weeks back.

My prediction for who gets the most votes for the R nomination is thus:

1 - Huntsman
2 - Ross Perot...I mean Ron Paul
3 - Romney

And I only score it that way because it's just too easy to pick Romney. If I had to bet my house, I'd go Romney, but where's the fun in that? I think the single biggest deciding factor in who R's will vote for will be to choose the person they think has the best chance of beating Obama.

After all, it worked for us D's when we took Kerry over our preferred ideological choice - Howard Dean - in 2004, right?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Not exactly, but he did go in to the bar to get toasted

So we're eating an awesome Father's Day dinner last night when Trev asked me to tell a dumb joke, because it's Father's Day and everyone has to laugh at my jokes, and when I can't think of one, Trev tells this one:

A sandwich walks into a bar and sits down and as the bartender walks by, he orders a beer but the bartender ignores him. Figuring he was hard of hearing, the next time the bartender walks by he said it a little louder, but again he was ignored.

This went on a number of times, when finally, the sandwich reached across the bar and grabbed the bartender by the collar and said, Why won't you get me a beer?! to which the bartender said "Sorry, we don't serve food here".

(Actually, when Trev told the joke, he gave the punchline as "We don't sell food here." :-( )

When it was clear that Emma didn't understand the joke, Cheryl started to explain it to her by telling her how there was a time when black people didn't get served at some restaurants, at which point a look of recognition quickly came over Emma's face and she interrupted Cheryl's explanation to say "Ohhhh, and it was burnt?!"

How odd that Trev and I would reach the awkward age at the same time

I think I've reached that awkward age, where some of the things I do for the first time ever...I'm also doing for the last time ever.

Like going in to a Moon Bounce as I did on Saturday night at a party at our neighbors across the street.

Maybe those annoying mosquitos WANT us to kill them

Seems to me that if one really believes in reincarnation, one should have no problem killing every annoying bug or hunting every available animal. In fact, we should be doing it as a favor to them, to get them to their next elevated incarnation more quickly.

And I really do want to believe. I do. I do. I do.

Repeat after me...but wait...what does After Me refer to?!

I often think of things that I think are perfect for this blog, but quickly forget them, lost forever. The only way I can remember them for later is to come up with nmeonic-type trcks, depending on what nmemonic means, not to mention how to spell it. The way I remembered the 3 posts above this one is by repeating to myself from sometime yesterday until now: Burnt awkward bugs. And then I decided I needed to say it twice to remember to write this post.

A Moses story that might last even longer than the one in the Bible

I wonder how many years have to pass before the Sixers can approach a draft without the sportswriters writing repeatedly about the infamous Moses Malone draft in 1986...twenty-five years ago.
One of my favorite gifts on Father's Day yesterday to go with a coupon from Emma for a back rub (offer expires 8/8/2011!), a coupon for two tickets to a Phillies game from Ammar (quickly followed by Emma whispering in my ear "Take me! Take me!") and 4 pair of work gloves (my only requested gift) and really cool hand made cards from Trev and Emma, was a phone call from Ev. She even called twice since we didn't answer the first time. Funny how such a little thing can mean so much.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Looking out for Number One...through infinity...and beyond!

One of my stereotypes of Republicans, and I am a believer that there is a lot of truth in stereotypes, is that they like to think of things in terms of black and white/with us or against us/good vs evil. And further that the reason for this is a less advanced process of thought where everything is simplified and the answers are more easily explained and attained. Things all sort of fit into a neat package and there is always some omniscient interpreter, such as Rush Limbaugh or Fox News who are there to explain how and where everything neatly fits. That is why so many R's are more likely than progressives to be of the evangelical strain where the Bible, and God, have all the answers, not just for life on earth, but potentially more perplexingly, what happens after we die.

And they are in opposition to us hand-wringing, discerning and threshing, left-wing-types who are always trying to see every possible permutation of a problem, every corner of grey, taking care not to step on anyone's toes or hurt their feelings or making anyone feel emotionally or economically less healthy.

And all this is leading up to one paradox, which is to wonder why we progressives are more willing to let government have more of a say in our lives, giving us the answers, providing for us economically and to some affiliated extent, emotionally as well.

So to totally oversimplify, for those on the right, they think God has all the answers and for those of us on the left, we think government will provide for us.

And in the end, I think both are wrong - we the people can, should and generally do provide for ourselves...and most important, for each other.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Put that in your belly and smoke it!

I used to hear stories about people dying of lung cancer who couldn't give up smoking, and I thought it pretty stupid. That was until recently when I happened to walk past a mirror while I was eating a cupcake.

The first response to my letter to the editor last week and my response to him

A different take on Obama's policies

Published: Sunday, June 05, 2011

Jamie McVickar needs to do a better job checking some facts before he displays abject ignorance presented recently in these pages. He also needs a lesson in the rights of creditors as they related to the so-called bailouts of GM and Chrysler.
Obama thwarted long established bankruptcy proceedings and gave his union buddies favored treatment over more deserving creditors. His statement that GM and Chrysler repaid their taxpayer funded loans is wrong. They merely took taxpayer money out of other government grants and applied them to loan payments. Result: We taxpayers are still owed the money.
His "clear majority of Americans" that approve of Obama's performance is also wrong, and the only reason Obama enjoys his current favorability is attributable to his being dragged kicking and screaming into finding Osama bin Laden, thanks to the Bush interrogation policies Obama so violently opposed.
Last week we witnessed Obama's duplicity when he urged Netanyahu to negotiate with a terrorist just after Obama ordered the killing of another one, quite probably in violation of U.S. law. Even Saddam Hussein had his day in court.

Mr. McVickar tells us more untruths about the Paul Ryan budget plan that he claims will add to the national debt. This has as much credibility as the Democrats ad showing "grandma" being pushed off a cliff. After all, it is Obamacare that steals Medicare funds.
Let's face some unpleasant facts: Obama's "hope and change" has turned out to be a magnified version of the worst of Bush policies, not the least of which are uncontrolled spending and yet another involvement in a Mideast war. To claim that Obama policies work is insanity.

Paul Linsen
Chadds Ford

Here is what I am saying in return, in a letter, hopefully to be submitted by someone else:

Hidden among the usual personal attacks in the recent letter by Paul Linsen, there are very few facts, as he himself proves. He says there is no clear majority of Americans who support President Obama and then goes on to say why there is a clear majority who support him. He takes Jamie McVickar’s point that Chrysler has paid back all the government loans, which is true, and lumps them in with GM, who, despite a miraculous turn-around, now finally posting billion dollar profits, has not yet paid back all the loans, although they are ahead of schedule. Obama helped the workers in the government loans, because his focus is on creating and saving jobs, something the Republicans, despite their successes last November, have yet to propose a single bill to address. Every credible, objective analysis of Paul Ryan’s budget shows that while he tried to get people all excited about gutting Medicare, the bill in the end does more economic harm than good. At least Linsen got one thing right in his letter when he became one of the first right-wingers to acknowledge that it was President Bush’s policies that put us in this whole mess that President Obama has done such an incredible job turning around.

In further evidence of the great job Obama is doing is an article in the New York Times, and echoed in Forbes magazine over the weekend pointing out that “federal taxes are at their lowest level in more than 60 years. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that federal taxes would consume just 14.8 percent of G.D.P. this year. The last year in which revenues were lower was 1950 according to the Office of Management and Budget.” The current tax rates, cut by Obama as part of the stimulus package and again at the end of 2010 for the current year, are lower than under the Republican deity, President Reagan. The article goes on to point out that the United States has the lowest corporate tax burden of any of the nations who are a part of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, including every European country, as well as Japan, South Korea and many others. Oh, and who wrote the column in the New York Times, pointing out that tax rates under President Obama are lower than those of Reagan’s? Bruce Bartlett, a domestic policy advisor to President Ronald Reagan and a top treasury official in the George H.W. Bush administration. The answer to our annual debt has never been more obvious. It is time to increase the tax rate for the wealthiest Americans back to where they were the last time our budget ran a surplus, which was during the Bill Clinton administration.

Wow - 2 intelligent comments below

I tried to post this in response to the two great comments by Charlie and Anonymous to my Letter to the Editor post, but it wouldn't accept me commenting on my own post for some reason, so I'll do it here:

Great points by both of you, and Charlie, as you suggest, the R's are missing a great opportunity in 2012. They could nominate a pragmatist - someone who speaks to the middle, acknowledges past successes and failures, without regard to party, and similarly, can make proposals, involving tax increases and obvious areas for spending cuts and I think he or she could win. But the R's are so impacted by the far right, it's hard to see an electable candidate emerging. I don't think the tea party is as strong as the press and the Rs in general think they are and if someone would stand up to them, it would help them as a candidate in the short and long run. The one guy I think may be able to do it is John Huntsman.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Articles that make me wonder why I still go to The Huffington Post

Headlines on one random day on Huffington Post - May 31, 2011:

- In Badminton, Pants Are Back
- Snooki In Custody After Cop-Car Crash
- WATCH: Mika HITS Joe
- WATCH: Tennis Player Infuriated After 12-Year Old Ball Boy Disrupts Point
- Woman Allegedly Wheeled Around Trash Can Full Of Body Parts
- PHOTO: Naomi Campbell Fuming Over 'Racist' Candy Ad
- Real Housewife Reveals Truth About 'Fights' On The Show
- WATCH: Giant Prehistoric Shrimp Was A Killer, Scientists Say
- Oh, Boy: Giant Baby Born In California

At this rate, here's my predicted headline upcoming:
AOL re-thinking their offer to buy for $315 million

Obama Poll Numbers

Opinion Research Corporation for CNN (PDF) (5/24-26, adult Americans):

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president?

Approve: 54%

Disapprove: 45%

Now compare this to his numbers in early April, according to the same polling firm:

Approve: 48%

Disapprove: 50%

That's a net swing of 11 points in the positive direction in a little less than two months. Notably, much of that shift has come from independents and Republicans. Here's the net swing by party:

Democrats: -4

Independents: +23

Republicans: +24

Interesting that we Dems like him less now than everyone else, though not statistically signifigantly. Doesn't seem to be any policy reason, so maybe it's just because R's are starting to like him that we are changing our minds. For the record, I haven't changed mind.

Friday, May 27, 2011

NBA Finals

I doubt I'll watch much, but like 90% of the rest of the country, I will loudly say: "GO MAVS!"

My letter to the editor earlier today

Amongst all the usual hate and froth from the usual two or three right-wing writers to the Daily Local, I was shocked this past week to see two of them giving so much credit to socialism! Our President has rescued our country from world economic collapse – the worst since the great depression, and the RWRs – the right-wing ranters - want to give all the credit to, of all things, socialism? I am not a socialist, but if that is the economic system that has accomplished in a few years what it took two to three decades to accomplish last time, I think it’s time we looked into it.
And what exactly has the President done? He rescued General Motors and Chrysler, saving up to 100,000 hard-working American jobs in the process. General Motors is now recording quarterly profits in the billions and this week Chrysler announced that they were paying off their government loans in full, more than six years ahead of schedule. It took a lot of courage for President Obama and the Democrats to put that legislation through, and the proof is now in that they did absolutely the right thing, even though some of us, myself included. were, at best, skeptical at the time.
When Obama took office, we were losing 750,000 jobs a month. Last month we added 244,000. That’s a turnaround of almost one million jobs…each month! And contrary to what the healthcare industry spokesman guest columnist wrote, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics ,government jobs have declined in 10 of the last 11 months for a total of 814,000 fewer government jobs in that time. And also from the same non-partisan source, there have been 14 consecutive months of private sector job growth, for a total of 2.1 million new jobs! Best of all, many of the states hardest-hit by the recession are coming back the strongest. Manufacturing centers like Michigan and Ohio are seeing their best job growth since 1999, the last time there was a Democratic administration. No wonder such a clear majority of Americans now approve of the President’s performance and why there are so few qualified Republicans willing to fight his re-election.
Or maybe the socialism they refer to is welfare – corporate welfare, that is - and the redistribution of wealth – our middle and lower-income earnings redistributed by their right-wing friends in Congress who think it is better directed to the big oil companies, who inexplicably still get tax subsidies, while they raked in profits of $32 billion in the first quarter of 2011, (so Big Oil gets you twice – once at the pump, and again in the paycheck) and to their friends on Wall Street and to the big banks and to tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, while cutting health care coverage for seniors and education funds for our kids. General Electric, Exxon Mobil, Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo and Boeing are among the corporations that paid no income taxes (some of them even got rebates!), but Republicans want to cut the corporate tax rate even more? Non-partisan analysts have shown that the current Paul Ryan GOP “plan” actually increases the national debt by hundreds of billions of dollars over the next ten years - and it still forces seniors to pay thousands of dollars out-of-pocket and potentially cuts off health care coverage completely for millions of Americans. If cost estimates of the Congressional Budget Office are at all right, the inadequate size of the vouchers — which by 2030 would cover only about a third of seniors’ health costs — would leave many if not most older Americans unable to afford essential care.
If Republicans are serious about debt reduction, as the conservative columnist for the New York Times, David Brooks, wrote: “Republicans should offer to raise tax revenues on the rich. They should get rid of the interest deductions on mortgages over $500,000 and on second homes. They should close corporate loopholes and cap the health insurance deduction.”
Some of us who consider ourselves moderates – on the left and the right – used to think it was a waste of time for some of these writers to be spending their time wailing about death panels and birth certificates, and “proving” our President is a secret Muslim. Now, some of us are thinking that may in fact actually be the best use of their time, even if they use some of it to support socialism.Jamie McVickar

West Vincent Township

And Ammar was there to see the whole thing

Weird stuff from last night's Phillies - Reds 19-inning marathon:

- In one inning, the Phillies walked three, hit one and still did not allow a Cincinnati run to score.

- Wilson Valdez is the first player to start a game in the field and then win the same game as a pitcher since some guy named Babe Ruth did it 90 years ago.

- The two teams combined to throw exactly 600 pitches.

- When Jay Bruce hit a home run in the 10th inning, a Phillies fan who caught it threw it all the way back to the place it had been a half-minute earlier - the pitchers mound.

- Phillies relievers pitched 12 innings and had more strikeouts (10) than walks and hits allowed combined (8).

- The run the Reds pitcher allowed in the 19th was the first run he's allowed this year. (OK, in just 4 games).

- That was the first time in his 19 years of managing that Cholly Manuel has allowed a position player to pitch.

- If the game had gone to the 20th, the Reds manager was going to bring his shortstop in to pitch.