Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Ok - been a long time since I wrote, but finally something caught my attention that I could vent about.

If you take a look at the pics, you will notice a wonderfully bright new Superbowl 43 Champions T-Shirt. Looks so wonderful in the factory, doesnt it? So white, crisp, and clean...

OH WAIT... did you catch it? Me being a Steelers fan, I caught it right away... The Cardinals DID NOT WIN Superbowl 43.

So a researching I went and here is what I found...

1,000s of T-shirts and hats are pre-printed before the game. Makes perfect sense, right? I mean the players need to wear them to celebrate, and fans at the game need to buy them on the way out.

The losing team, however, the shirts are never heard from again. They are actually never seen by the US public. Turns out, the NFL donates the pre-printed shirts and hats to an organization called world vision. They then whisk the items away to 3rd world countries and clothe thousands of people with the losing team's apparel. Nice.

Now, dont get me wrong, donations are wonderful, but heres what irks me...

The security around these shirts are EXTREMELY tight. The organization doesnt want anyone to get their hands on the gear, out of fear they will be re-sold for higher profits on eBay.

WAIT A MINUTE... doesnt THAT make more sense?

Why doesnt the organization sell the shirts (what they can) on eBay and make MORE MONEY? Which in turns buy more food, more clean water, perhaps MORE clothes that cost less, since they wouldnt be NFL printed logo merchandise???

They could even tap further markets by having the shirts re-ran through the printing press and add things to the original design... make things say "Almost Champions" or "Superbowl Champions... NOT!"

See what Im saying?

And then, the needy people in third world countries, who are probably basking in the sun of the desert can stop staring at the guy handing them a t-shirt oddly, when all they really want is some sunscreen and a twinkie.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Top Ten Things NOT To Do In A Poor Economy

Times are rough. Let’s face it. Stocks are selling and the market is shakier than a bunch of epileptics in a canoe. With this guide of what NOT to do, you should be alright. Enjoy:

10: Panic. That’s right, don’t panic. Don’t get all superman and jump off a building or out a window in hopes that instant death is the cure. There’s always a way out, there’s always hope, and if you’re like me, you have a family that needs you. Even in rough times, 2 low paying salaries are still better than 1, so stick around and don’t panic.

9: Sell. Yep, you heard it here… keep your money invested. The cycle of the economy is actually built to your advantage. While it’s not fun to watch your resources dwindle down to 30%, then 40%, then 50% of what it once was, it will come back. The one thing I can guarantee you is that if you sell, it won’t come back. Ever. You need to ride it out to rebound.

8: Save. Stop hording your cash. Don’t leave it under a mattress; don’t leave it in a savings account making 19 cents a month. Now is the time to throw it all in a nice mutual fund or some safe stocks that are on the low. Need some tips? Transportation, healthcare, beverage companies, etc… These will all be around for ages. The world needs all of them to survive.

7: Budget Like A Maniac. OK – this is touchy. Budgets are a necessity, in any lifestyle. Good economy or bad economy. But what I mean is, don’t take away every little ounce of happiness you have to try and make it all work. You need a $6.00 latte everyday? Fine. I’m not going to tell you to quit, but maybe get a smaller size everyday. Maybe just get one every other day. But don’t depress yourself by starving your cravings dry.

6: Ignore Coupons. People PLEASE!!!! If there was a dollar bill on the street, would you walk by it? We get coupons every Sunday. Clip them, use them. I average $40-$50 savings per week using coupons and finding where I can maximize their potential (ie- double or triple coupon locations). Clip them don’t be ashamed. If you see someone staring at you as you shuffle through them in the store, give them a look roll your eyes, mumble “I cant believe someone wouldn’t use coupons,” and give a little sarcastic laugh with a head nod.

5: Wait for the holidays. The crunch comes in no time flat. Right now, it’s October. I have my list already, I have some people already shopped for and crossed off. Before you know it, December is here. Get the list done in little increments rather than all at once, and you rack up a $1,000 Best Buy or Target bill!

4: Live in the un-green house. We’ve all heard of going green, right? Well, I don’t really think of the environment too much, but I think of saving the green, as in cash. I shut of all lights when not in use. I power down power strips, I shut registers to vents in rooms not in use, I cut corners everywhere in my house to save a nickel and dime here and there. Do it… IT WORKS!

3: Keep your credit stagnant. If you have credit card bills, seek out an easier way. See if you can move that balance to a new card/bank with 0% interest. Anything you can do to NOT pay interest, or pay lower interest is your best bet right now. Move your credit around. Talk to your banks for lower rates. See if re-financing your mortgage right now for LESS TIME, and LOWER PAYMENTS is possible… YES, it really might be. A 30 year mortgage taken out 3 or 4 years ago at 6.5 % will have MUCH higher payments than a new 15 year mortgage at 5.75% - research it and switch it.

2: Hold off that big purchase. Thinking about a new car or major re-construction on the home? DO IT! Why wait until prices, costs, and interest rates rise back up? Do it now and get the best deal you can. Car dealerships are practically throwing cars at you. Construction costs are at an all time low. Just do it, and pay all you can. Remember this though… construction on a home ADDS equity. Buying a new car lessens it. Nothing depreciates faster than a shiny new car… but if you need or want one badly enough, go for it now, strike while the iron is hot.

1: And I Mean this… it really is the number one thing to NOT DO!!!! Never, under almost 100% circumstances, switch your job. No matter what is thrown your way. If you have company loyalty of more than one year, KEEP IT! Statistics have shown that when a company lays people off, the first considerations go to NEW employees. Loyalty actually does count for something in this day and age. Now, nothing is guaranteed, but why roll the dice? Employment change during poor economic times should only be done under drastic circumstances (including being laid off). If you have less than one year history with a company, change if a good opportunity is thrown your way. But otherwise, stick it out until better times. Your company might reward you for it. The new one, might say “well, we lasted long without this person, they’ve only been here a month, lets get rid of them before we take out any other people with bigger severance packages and unemployment bills.”

Monday, October 6, 2008

Because I'm A Fat Bastard....

OK - Im not morbidly obese... but I'm up there. I really only want to get in shape for one reason... my health. I don't feel like suffering a few heart attacks or yield my food intake due to diabetes somewhere down the road.

I'm a fairly out of shape 32 year old who just gets really bored of running on a treadmill or working out or you know... all that faddy stuff that just never takes.
I could count points on what I eat, or I can cut out carbs, or I can just wish I was dead while sucking down a rice cake and another bottle of water.

But really. REALLY???? I know theres one real formula for EVER losing weight. Calorie intake is less than caloric input. Add in a few extra things like starving yourself WILL NEVER work, and you need proper nutrition to ... well ... LIVE, I devised a simple plan.

I am now a student of the Martial Arts.

Yes people in web-land... I am on my way to registering myself as a lethal weapon. I figured quite a few things...

1 - Its actually a fitness program with real goals (or belts).
2 - Its a lot of fun
3 - Its strict and the instructors like to push you

Put it together with a nice, clean diet, and VIOLA! I should be Brad Pitt in no time flat.

I have to tell you that if you are considering this, there are also other things that make this so much fun...

I convinced my wife to start classes with me. I get that people work out with their significant other, but I never really "got it." It's fun to see her sparring with me or practicing blocks or really working hard next to me trying to bang out 100 jumping jacks. It really makes me see my wife in an entirely new light. I see her out there having fun and really getting into it, and it once again makes me feel how lucky I am. Not only do I get to work out, aim for losing my keg (where my 6-pack abs should be), learn a terrific sport/skill, but I have someone in my life who actually dedicated a lot of her extra time to spend it with me, doing this.

What more could I ask for? Except my black belt, I guess.

Soon enough, I am sure!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Sometimes... it's just "good"

Theres a point in life where you can turn around and just be sad. Whether it's family, work, not getting the right trinket give-away at a local Gamestop, or whatever...

We've all been there, I am sure. You have a cloud hanging over you and there's just a feeling of malaise, and no explanation of why. Although maybe you do know why, and you have no control over it.

It happens, and unfortunately, I've felt it. But you know what....

This morning, whilst taking a shower, I got to peek out of my steamy mist-filled glass doors to see my youngest dog hangin' out on the bathroom floor.

Waiting. And then keeping himself busy by... chasing his tail. And while that may seem dumb, and I am almost 100% sure that it's pointless, I got to watch him and enjoy the fact that he... this 4 legged freak of nature is in my life. Which opened a flood of overwhelming joy in the realization that I am ENTITLED to have him. I have a house, a loving wife, a job... she has a job, we have another dog, and we CAN have them. Make sense? All in all, the realization that even whilst life throws curveballs at you - for anything - there needs to be a moment like this in everyones life when you stop and say....

"I have all of this" ... "Do I have the right to be sad?" ... "Is whats bringing me down, validation enough to slow down my smiling and enjoyment of this ride we call life?"


As Morgan Freeman said in The Shawshank Redemption... "Get busy livin' or get busy dyin'!"

I chose to smile today... because my dog chased his tail. And for that one act of sheer stupidity, I love him more today than I did yesterday.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The B.R.A.K.E. Award Induction!

Welcome! Welcome to my 1st ever BRAKE AWARDS!

You might be asking... what is the BRAKE Award?

And here is the answer you seek:


I have noticed that there are many of you people out there, and here it is... your time to shine.

My award to you is your license plate, car description, and every stupid thing I think you have done on the road to annoy me, and fellow drivers around you.

I will also try and grab a pic every now and then to prove these are real events.

Let's get started, shall we?


This morning, on my way in, I was seated nicely in traffic at a slow, yet steady pace. Creeping along past an on-coming merge lane, I see you approaching.

Now, I am near the end of the merge lane - there were no more dotted lines, and pretty much no more room to spare in the on ramp you were in.

But.. did you care? OHHHHH NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Why would you? The road is yours and you of course, are a force to be dealt with. You not only felt that getting ahead of ONE extra car to sit in traffic would be worth the aggravation to those around you, but you ALSO insisted on letting your right front tire creep up onto the curb to make sure you do it.


My hat really comes off to you, pal... but should we stop there?

Naaaaaa - I knew you were gonna do it. Not only did you "conquer" me and my entire lane of traffic, but you blasted your way into the left lane, just seconds after getting in front of me.

This was funny because now, I sat next to you.. I can see you in your car with your slicked back hair and I got to watch you; the "King of the Parkway" puff on his cigarette for a bit. Then I got to watch you tailgate for a bit. Speed up, slam on the brakes. Speed up... you get the point. Disrupting the steady flow behind you, you had no care in the world.

I got to watch you get stuck at a standstill as the right lane started moving... and then I saw you weave in and out in my rear-view mirror trying to make up those few extra seconds lost by poor lane decisioning. You my friend, suck as a driver.

I also cite you for driving one of the worst looking cars EVER in production.

Now dont get me wrong... the NEW (or even older than 2000) Audi A6 is lovely, and I admire Audi's precision and performance, however... let's be honest. Your Audi A6 was the worst year of production for Audi. It has a big bubbly butt looking rear-end, and seems to appear like a 400 pound fat circus chick riding a unicycle.

I will give you a fair deal and assume it was a 2004, since that was the last year of the bubbly butt model. But even then, your car has a measly 220 horses under the hood. It looks like a grandpa car, and you have it in a grandpa color... Silver? You could have gone one step further to embarrass yourself and just be driving the champagne colored bubble butt mobile. But you have no right to try and be fast or aggressive... by no means is that car meant to look cool in. In any way. At all. Not a chance.

But I digress....

You rule brother! And your driving skills... EXCEPTIONAL. Keep up the great work, you're a pleasure to share the road with!


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Lucky Dwarf (I think)

This just in...

He Pingping is the world record holder for being the smallest man, finally got to meet Svetlana Pankratova. She, as the story unfolds, is the supposed "Queen of Longest Legs."

Why they met, I have no idea. But suddenly, being the last person to know when it's raining all of a sudden has some well pointed out advantages - SEE PIC:

This poor "little" dude can live fantasies in every mall across America.

What else can he do?

How about hang glide with a Dorito?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Runs from the Border

Taco Bell - you did it. I have tried everything on your menu. At least twice. You taunted me for years with spicy this and spicy that. I drowned items in your "fire" sauce and mocked your menial attempts at making my lips tingle or grasping for a sip of water.
I am unsure who classified your items on a "spiciness" level, but you have never achieved spicy in my book. Ever. Until now.

The other day I tried this 240 calorie monstrosity:
One might know it as the VOLCANO TACO.

I now know it as my arch enemy.

Your seasoned beef, which I am sure contributes to most of the 17 grams of fat is reminiscent of all the other beef within all your other menu items.

Your real cheddar cheese, I am confident, adds the 5 grams of saturated fat to this meal, and coincidentally is used in all other items on the menu as well.

SO...??? What changes this taco and makes it Volcanic?

Perhaps the "Cheesy Lava Sauce?" I have never heard of such a thing. EVER. And a BRIGHT RED crispy taco shell holds it all inside. Weird. Red? Just weird.

I am certain these 2 items combined account for more than 75% of your 490 milligrams of sodium packed into this spicy little concoction which makes my mouth scream for a glass of something... anything to wash it down with.

On the spicy level... job well done. Taste level... eh. But you're on the right track, I must say.