The People's Bestseller

Recently WWE and Hollywood superstar The Rock made some waves when he send out the following tweet:

Helluva journey.. putting final touches on my next book. Inspiration, motivation, insight & a few dirty jokes. Released this November;)

Useless Rag

I had an idea for a blog post a couple of weeks ago that kind of fizzled out.  It was going to be a long comment on how there are a great many examples of clothing that is designed for women that women either find uncomfortable to wear or do not meet their needs, while there are not similar examples among clothing designed for men.  The idea came to me after reading this post on Jezebel and the comment I made thereafter.

After thinking about it for a while I came to two conclusions.  One: I could write this blog post but what could I present that would further the discussion, or bring conclusion to it?  Eventually I realized that the only idea I had was to complain about something that is going on and saying that people should do something about it instead of being actually able to do something about it.  Two: There is an example of clothing designed for men that men find uncomfortable to wear and does not fit their needs.  I could only think of one example, even after spending several days pondering over the wide variety of clothing options for men and what those pieces of clothing actually accomplish.  The one piece of clothing that is designed for men that men find uncomfortable to wear and does not fit their needs is the tie.

The tie.  There are times in our lives when all men must wear a tie.  Whether it's to work, a formal occasion, church, or to a funeral, eventually all men wear a tie.  Yet, despite long dutiful thought about the subject, I cannot think of a good use for the tie, and I bet none of the men reading this post can think of one either.  Some people think that a tie is used to cover up the buttons on a white collared shirt.  Some people, amusingly, think that the tie is meant to point toward something that lies under the belt.  Some people think that the tie has some sort of masochistic function.  However, none of those reasons seem to ring true, and just seem to serve as placeholders for the real reason that we have yet to discover.  The fact of the matter is that the tie serves no real purpose and is uncomfortable to wear when put on in a way that is deemed proper.  The tie just seems to be completely useless.

‘World's Poorest President' Rages Against The Necktie, Calling It A ‘Useless Rag'

It's good to see that somebody else out there agrees with me.

A Little Pick Me Up

There are some times when you need a little thoughtless enjoyment.  Something that is little more than just visual stimulation.  A little pick me up.

Well, that definitely picked me up.

How I'll Be Spending This Morning

This morning I'm dropping my Rubi off at the dealership for scheduled maintenance.  She'll be down there for most of the day, and I will almost certainly have to leave her there overnight.  I also suspect they may find some further problems.  Honestly, I fear the worst.  By the way, Rubi is my car.  My 2008 Mercury Mountaineer is named after the first album I listened to when I first drove her home: Crossing The Rubicon by The Sounds.  I love that album, and I love my Rubi.  However both can be replaced if the need arises.

Another Sign

In recent months I've been having rethinking my faith, and by that I mean Atheism.  I've been an Atheist for about a decade now, even though my family acts like this is completely new, but recently I've been rethinking things.  With the goals that I have, I feel like I need a sense of direction, some structure, a sense of where to go and how to get there.  Due to this, I've been thinking about investigating religions.  Specifically Scientology.  The way that Scientologists view marriage and the family aligns with my beliefs in how people should be actively building the relationships that mean the most to them.

However, something that I saw recently has reaffirmed my faith.  It's not something that speaks ill of religion, but rather serves as a statement.  A statement about the possible existence of an all knowing all seeing being.


Clearly there is no god.

Not Right In A Moral Context

Controversial execution botched in Oklahoma

Like most liberals, I don't like the concept of the death penalty.  There are too many questions about the true guilt of suspects, evident disparities in how different races are sentences, and whether suspects have available to them adequate legal representation.  However, if we are going to put prisoners to death, we need to do so in a way that does not constitute cruel and inhumane conduct.  For this reason, I can no longer support executing prisoners via lethal injection due to the inability for states to obtain Sodium thiopental, a fast acting anesthetic that was typically used for lethal injection before the manufacturer decided to stop providing the drug to states for the purposes of execution.

Ending lethal injection does not stop a state's perceived need to execute it's prisoners, and if a state is going to execute their prisoners it need to be done in a way that is safe, effective, and humane.  For that reason, if a state is going to execute it's prisoners, I would support doing to via firing squad, as was recently proposed in the state of Utah.  Yes, I'd rather that we not execute people, but if we are going to do it we need to do it right.  Not right in a moral context, but right in the method that we utilize.

Just Stop

On Sunday May 18th 2014, the world, or at least the small part of the world that bothered to watch the Billboard Music Awards, was presented with a performance of a new single by Michael Jackson, featuring a holographic interpretation of the deceased King of Pop.  The performance is imbedded above.  Reactions to this video were mixed, ranging from "What the fuck is this shit?" to "Oh God, why?" to "Turn it off!  TURN IT OFF!  IT'S SUCKING MY WILL TO LIVE!!!"  I, for one, am impressed by this groundbreaking use of holographic technology, but think that we need to put it away for a while.  We need to stop using holographic technology untill the quality of the video that it can render reaches Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within level of quality.

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is a movie put out in 2001 by Square Pictures, the only full length movie that studio ever put out.  Rather than using real life actors for this film, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within was made entirely with computer generated graphics.  The quality of the CGI in this film was so good that it made Alex Baldwin, one of the films stars, look almost human.  Although it lost more money than it took it, the movie left a distinct impression on the viewing public.  For the first time, many movie goers saw movie shot entirely in CGI as a worthwhile venture.

If the level of computer created graphics in Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within were deemed to be subpar by the movie going public, we might not have seen movies like Avatar and Tron: Legacy, movies that were greatly enhanced by their utilization of CGI.  The holographic performances we see today, most notably with Michael Jackson and Tupac Shakur, contain a level of graphic acuity that is definitely subpar.  Untill such a point as we can say that performers can be reproduced at a level that looks at least somewhat realistic, we need to put this technology away.  If not, holographic performances may have the same reputation that stereoscopic 3D movies did in the 80s and early 90s.  So please, for the sake of this technology, just stop.  That is unless you plan to recreate Mick Mars.  That guy's been dead for years, right?

Focusing On The Problem, Not The Solution

There a scene in the movie Patch Adams that, after seeing it, has painted the way that I view the world ever since.  The scene is linked above, but the integral part of the scene is when Arthur Mendelson, played by Harold Gould, reveals what the means when he asks people how many fingers people see.  What Arthur is trying to get across is that people need to stop looking at the problem when they are faced with it, for when they focus on the problem they can never see the solution.

Urban Armor# 2: The Personal Space Dress from Kathleen McDermott on Vimeo.

I thought of the fingers example when I read about The Personal Space Dress on The Huffington Post.  While this dress is a good concept, it doesn't address the underlying problem.  Women wouldn't need a dress that protects their personal space if men would respect a woman's personal space.  That's the problem.  Besides, if men want to continue violating a woman's personal space, all this dress will do is provide another obstacle for perverts to overcome.  As I've said before, perverted behavior is a man's problem, and it's a problem that only men can solve.  Men need to put an end to this behavior so that we all can exist in a society that is more comfortable for all.

Chinese Handshake

Recently the Chinese government lifted it's ban on foreign based video game consoles, allowing the vast untapped marketplace of China to be available to video game makers around the world.  Like all things in China, this move did not come without restrictions.  These restrictions weren't formalized when the bad was lifted, but these new rules governing video games are slowly being rolled out, and, if a report by Rocket News 24 is to be believed, these restrictions may come at a high price for basic interactions in video games.

If the report is accurate, which it may not be due to a lack of direct sourcing, the Chinese government has banned video games that are to be sold in it's country from depicting the following things:

Characters wearing bikinis or shorts

Exposure of sensitive parts of the body (The Rocket News 24 report doesn't state what constitutes "sensitive parts of the body")

And finally, bodily touching between men and women

While these rules may need some clarification, particularly when it comes to sports games where shorts are prevalent, one of these rules may need to be done away with altogether.  This is due to one of these rules banning one of the most common greeting within Western Culture.

The handshake.  If, as the report states,  “Bodily touching between men and women in games is completely prohibited,”, then the handshake between men and women is expressly banned, even though in most instances a handshake is just a handshake.  While working around this rule might be funny to see, it's an unreasonable standard for foreign video game manufactures to have to live up to, and may end up being a hindrance in the production of quality video games for the Chinese market.  Also, this doesn't speak well for the Chinese method of governance.  If the Chinese government wrote a rule so vague that it bans something that is common and not salacious, what other common and normal things do their rules ban?

Fucking Worthless

To this point I have not received any awards for my writing.  In fact, the last award I did receive was a participation trophy I received in Little League.  I actually see this as a good thing.  Not getting any acclaim for my writing allows me to write things without having to meet any kind of expectations or standard.  Sure the adoration of my peers would be nice, but adoration can't be the driving force in writing.  It's got to be about the writing.  It's got to be about the art, man.

Rush Limbaugh Wins Children's Book Award

Yeah, I especially don't want awards now.  Forget that bullshit I said before, I really don't fucking care about winning an award for fucking anything.  If this fat sack of shit could write a completely self indulgent false historical piece of tripe and win an award for it, awards are worthless.  Fucking worthless.

EA Games Via A Cable Box?

I've been sitting on this story for a couple of days because I've been waiting for it to develop more, but since it hasn't I'm going to give my opinion about it.  According to a report on Ars Technica, Comcast is currently in discussions with Electronic Arts to allow some of EA's games to be played on Comcast's set top boxes via live streaming.  The article states that this may allow some of EA's most high profile titles, including, according to the article, "FIFAMadden, and Plants vs. Zombies" to be played on a normal cable box.  While I think that such a service would be a good addition to Comcast's current service, I do not think that most people will be playing Madden on their cable box anytime soon.  What will they be doing?

Electronic Arts owns PopCap Games, who are responsible for such games as Bejeweled, Peggle, and Zuma's Revenge.  Games like this are ones you can easily jump into, get enjoyment from, and not require the user to manipulate a multi-button controller or keyboard.  In fact, it can be reasonably said that you can control most of PopCap games with just a simple remote control, and that is how most people will be using this service.  While some people may try to play Madden or FIFA with their cable remote, or possibly with their table computers via a Comcast specific app, most of the players of these games will find the experience too limiting due to the constraints of their chosen controller.  However players of more casual games will not have a problem with the limit of their chosen controller, and may find being able to play these games from their couch, as opposed to sitting in front of their computer screen, to be a better experience.  Madden via a cable box may never truly take off, but Peggle via a cable box has the possibility to be very successful.

Project Make A Political Statement

Since I started pursuing Project Buy A House, I haven't been doing a lot of protest buying.  Protest buying is where you buy a product as a form of political statement.  Sure I switched from Coke to Pepsi last year due to Pepsi's support for the Human Rights Campaign, but all that has resulted in is me spending the same amount of money on one product as opposed to another.  I'd like to use my wallet to make my voice known, but buying a house is a long term goal of mine that I am damn sure going to accomplish.

The Sims 4 rated 18+ in Russia for same-sex relationships

I'm buying The Sims 4.  I don't care if I can or cannot run the game on my current laptop, I'm buying this game.  Okay, I might hold off untill later this year, since I am very close to finally having enough money saved up for a downpayment for a house, buy I am buying this game.  Maybe.  Perhaps.  Hopefully.  Maybe.

Why Does This Exist?

Sometimes you run across something that you are honestly befuddled by.  You look at the thing, look at it again, and then look at it again, and wonder, sometimes to yourself and sometimes aloud, why this thing exists.

Yep.  That's a pair of compression shorts with a special appendage attached to them designed especially for men.  And I mean ESPECIALLY for men.  You would never, EVER, see this be worn by a woman.  These compression shorts are real and are really for sale.  Really.  The existance of this product makes me think: Why does this product exist?  Why?  WHY?!?

Kate Upton Says You Should Pay More Attention to Her Butt

I'm sorry, what was I just thinking about?

I've Been There

There are instances where you see something on the news and you leap up and say, "I'VE BEEN THERE!"  It can happen often to people who watch the local news and are active people in their community.  This can be both a good thing and a bad thing, but when things like this happen it is always significant to the person watching the story.  Instances like this are rare for me.  This is not because I don't watch the local news, because I do, every night.  I just don't go out and do things that often.  You can blame Project Buy A House, or me being a hermit, but rarely do I see a news story and go, "I've been there."

Utah strip-club shooting suspect nabbed — along with meth, heroin

Yep, I've been there.  I've been to that strip club where the shooting happened, and the suspect in that shooting was later caught with hardcore drugs in his possession.  I don't go to that strip club often, but I have been there.  This is an example of an instance where "I've been there" is bad, but it could be worse.

Gunman Kills Five People at Trolley Square
"According to local TV station KTVX, several witnesses reported that most of the shooting took place on the ground floor near the Pottery Barn store, though the majority of the dead were found in Cabin Fever, a card store."

Yep, I've been there.  Before the Trolley Square shooting, I went to the card store that was the focus of the incident.  In fact, unlike the example involving the strip club, I still go to that card store.  Cabin Fever is a great place to get funny little cards for any holiday, as well as gifts for any number of occasions, ranging from birthdays, Christmas, baby showers, to house warming parties.  Recently, I bought a card for Mother's Day at Cabin Fever.  Some people might think that it's corny for men to buy cards for their mothers for Mother's Day, but the cards at Cabin Fever make for a great present that exhibits your unique personality.

Where am I going with this?  Hey look, a kittie!

Found Questioning

Recently Ask.FM has seen an uptick in popularity.  With such internet dignitaries as skie and Rob Roberts joining in on the craze, I thought I would as well due to me being a lemming.  However, rather than joining Ask.FM, I thought I'd go about answering question from the internet in a different fashion.

Found poetry is a real and legitimate form of poetry, even having it's own Wikipedia entry.  Writers who engage in found poetry find examples of combinations of words that are in their environment that they find to be significant.  Sure you can question whether found poetry is truly creative, but people who bring up questions like that are rarely able to see the gentle beauty in everyday life.  Also, those people suck.

So I've decided, rather than solicit question from one source, to scour the internet looking for question that I can answer.  Sure these questions may not be directed toward me, but questions rarely are.  Okay, here goes.

Would You Have Sex With a Robot?


Protests I Can Get Behind

Often when I read of protests going on I scarcely understand what the people are protesting.  This may be due in part to my own ignorance, but sometimes it is the fault of the people organizing the protest not getting their message across.  People organizing protests need to make their message known in clear, precise language.  Such is the case with the recent protest of the Dorchester Collection, a company that owns the Beverly Hills Hotel.  An article posted by The Hollywood Reporter puts the reason for the protest plainly.

"The Dorchester Collection is owned by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah through the Brunei Investment Agency. Last week, Brunei became the first East Asian country to adopt sharia law, which calls for flogging, dismemberment and death by stoning for crimes such as rape, adultery and sodomy."

Yep, that is a good reason for a protest, conveyed in terms that are specific, direct, and incredibly clear.  Maybe if Occupy Wall Street had such a similar message, their movement would have been more immediately productive, as opposed to having a marginal long lasting impact.

Taking My Corporate Balls

There's something to be said about the concept of taking your ball and going home.  That thing that needs to be said is that it sucks.  Behavior such as this is something that petulant children do, and sometimes petulant adults.  Yes it is your ball and yes the people you're playing with may not be doing exactly what you want, but fuck you.  That's life!  People aren't going to do exactly what you want in exactly the way that you want it to be done all the damn time.  Part of being an adult, a real adult not a petulant childish manchild, is learning how to adjust to what other people are doing in a way that is beneficial to yourself and the group.  It may not always work out best for you but that's what happens sometimes.

Major TV Networks Trash Netflix, Want It To Be Like Amazon And Hulu

...that is unless you are a major corporation.  Then you get whatever the fuck you like however the fuck you like it, and if you don't you can figuratively take your ball and go home.

List Of Things I Won't Do

I love it when people give me a list of things to do.  It makes it so much easier to ignore people when I can do it for reasons.  So, I was overjoyed when I saw a post by Jezebel contributor Tracy Moore.

Every Healthy Morning Habit You Should Adopt Right Now

Perfect!  Let's go down the list and see just how many of these things I won't be doing and why.

Wake up early.
This actually isn't unreasonable.  This may require me to change when my alarm clock goes off everyday by a couple of hours, but this can be done.

But get enough sleep.
I get off work at 11PM, and usually get to sleep by 1AM.  How am I supposed to get enough sleep and wake up early?  Frankly, I'd rather choose getting enough sleep over waking up early, that is unless sex is involved and, since I currently don't have a romantic partner, that isn't an option for me.


Go outside.
I do go outside.  I go outside everyday.  I mean my car is outside, so I kind of have to go outside to get in my car.

Drink water. 16 ounces of water.
Should I do this before or after I take a shower?  Or during?  Hey, that's not a bad idea.  Drinking water while I shower would cut down on the amount of water that wastefully goes down the drain.  It may be a little bit, but every little bit helps!

Drink warm water with lemon in it.
Okay.  How do I arrange this?  Also, would that count as cannibalism?

Drink warm lemon and cayenne pepper water first thing in the morning.
Cayenne Pepper sound like the name of a porn star.  How am I supposed to drink water with a character from a comedy in it AND a porn star in it?  Perhaps that's something I can get at Whole Foods.

Drink green tea.
Water and green tea?  Can you just choose one?

Drink coffee.
Water, green tea, and coffee?  Can you just choose one?  Also, if I undertake this advice, how am I supposed to avoid having to urinate multiple times in the hour after I wake up?

Eat before morning workout.
Wait, there's something implied here that might be a problem.

Just eat fruit.
Then I'd have to buy some fruit.

Eat healthy things.
Should I eat healthy things before or after my morning Heineken?

Just make sure it's actually healthy.
I'm thinking Tracy Moore probably wouldn't approve of my morning Heineken.

Eat within an hour of waking.
This isn't unreasonable, but would require me to eat right after getting out of the shower.  If I do that, when am I supposed to watch SportsCenter?

Go outside and look at the morning sky.
Again with the outside thing.

No, it's spelled mediate.

Can I do this while I'm drinking my coffee, green tea, and my Liz Lemon/Cayenne Pepper water?  If not, I might run out of morning to do all these things that are supposed to be a part of my morning routine.

Flex and point your feet for 15 to 30 seconds.
Again, is multitasking an option with this?

Move your body.
Isn't that kind of a given when you wake up?  I mean I'm not a quadriplegic and I'm not Mr. Show level of lazy, so moving my body when I wake up is a part of waking up.

Go for a morning walk.
Should I get dressed first?  That's hasn't been included in this list yet, and I really don't want to walk naked in front of the elementary school that's just up the street from me.

Okay, that's done.  What else?

"Slather your body in lotion SLOWLY."
You seem to be really specific about this slowly thing.  Is somebody watching while I do this?

Dry-brush your skin.
I don't know what this means.

Do some journaling.
Does blogging count?  What do you mean no?

Can you be specific?

Map your day.
No.  Outside of work, I don't like to clutter my days with doing specific things at specific times.  That way people won't get upset when then hit me up at the last minute to do things for them and I have to tell them that I have plans.  Sure this seems like more their problem than mine, but I don't control them.  I am only in control of me and the way that I do things and react to things.

Eat that frog.
Again, I do not currently have a romantic partner, so this might not be an option for me.

Ask yourself "morning power questions."  Such as:  
What do I have to look forward to today?  
What's absolutely perfect about my life?  
How can I make today absolutely awesome?  
What's the best thing that could happen today?  
What am I grateful for?
The answer to all of these questions is Heineken.

Listen to music or something uplifting.
Okay.  Done.

Do all 12 of these things within ONE HOUR or else:  
Say 10 morning affirmations (quick!)  
Hydrate your body  
Brush your teeth (and tongue)
Meditate (different from affirmations)
Warm up your voice
Make a fresh green juice
Eat something light (air?)
Read something stimulating
Review your goals for the day
Drink loose leaf tea
Set an intention for the day
Many of these have been covered already, specifically stretching, drinking tea, and hydrating.  Am I supposed to do them again?  I'd rather not be redundant in my morning routine.

Get dressed.
Again, is this before or after I take my morning walk?

Don't forget your beauty routine.
Okay.  That basically consists of shampooing and conditioning my hair, then brushing it straight back.  Should I be doing more?

All of these things that are prescribed for me would seem to take up a lot of time.  Is this a way to tell me that I should not spend as much time as I do watching TV and playing video games?  If so, that's quite a sneaky way to do it.  I think I'd rather just listen to Pure Morning on a loop, but thank you Tracy Moore for the suggestions that I am going to ignore.