Saturday, December 30, 2006

Stories from 2006

Hi All!

By your leave, this must serve as the Kuettel Family Holiday "Letter."

It was a fairly good year, bringing a few blessings and plenty of curses.

Alex graduated from Cretin-Derham Hall and Catie came in as a Freshman, while Drew is experiencing the often-tough Junior Year.

Alex is living on campus at the U of M as he starts his college career.

Health issues effected all of us at one time or another. We have all come through and I feel particularly blessed to see 2007 arrive, dashing my doctor's prediction that I wouldn't see Christmas. He renewed my handicap card from December 31 only until June 2007 so he is still a "Gloomy Gus."

The highlight of the year for me was pulling off a pretty darn good graduation party for Alex, despite the 100+ degree temperature and the main course of three kinds of nice hot chili! We hardly needed the crock pots and we needed to conserve the energy to run the big cooling fans under the tent and to power the rock and roll band that blew the leaves off the trees.

An accomplishment that gives me some comfort is that I am glacially reversing 20 years of cluttering that had pretty much taken over the house and garage. Only perhaps half there, but as my energy permits, we should be relatively dejunked by the end of 2007.

As I close the year with this 211th post, I went back and picked a few that you might enjoy reading (to get back to this page after reading a story, just press your browser's back button.

Father's Day Ruminations (Weird)

An Irony of Life (Poetic Justice)

Look Out Cretin-Derham Hall! (Sentimental)

Pagan Baseball Ceremony (Very Weird)

Paul's Health (Dour)

Laura's Birthday (Cute)

Democrat's Inauguration Event (Funny)

No Time for Unhappiness (Compelling)

Cheers and Happy 2007!

PS. A New Year's Eve Update:

A decent little snow storm blew up this afternoon and may have put the damper on many a sybaritic plan. All three kids are having the sort of fun that I guess we did at their ages (and I hope not in certain ways) but I have convinced them not to travel too far afield this evening and to just enjoy what they have where they have it without dangerous road trips.

I took Stan and Ollie for a walk in the winter wonderland and after a block I felt like I was in a Jack London book. The snow was of the horizontally driven pin-pricking type and it will be argued who decided to turn back first. Me or the pups. Are you kidding? they are the penultimate "house dogs." I still have the capacity to bear the pain of a Minnesota Winter.

Now, thanks to the tab on my browser which brings up an instant weather radar picture, I see that the storm has blown through and as it is only a bit past 10:00 the rides home should be no more treacherous than the drivers have made it for themselves.

I am here in my "furnace room" office with the extra heat of the beast breathing on my back before the rest of the house get's to share it.

By God I, We, You....Made it to 2007.

Which is more than can be said of a good president and a despicable tyrant.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Life Ain't All Peaches and Cream

Hi All!

Randy Moss quoted that old line when he got in trouble for running a red light and hitting a traffic cop. The case went away very quickly. One can assume the traffic cop has no financial worries for life.

I'm retiring that quote from my masthead because it is too trite and too depressing.

Have any of you ever eaten peaches and cream? My Nana used to serve it to us as kids. Fresh sliced peach wedges bathed in cream (or whole milk at least) and buried in an avalanche of sugar. Best way to enjoy fruit, but perhaps not very healthy. Like a Cranberry and Vodka. Fruit and potato, good for a sugar buzz but not too good for one, at least if over-indulged-in.

When my eldest was home from college for a couple of nights he discovered that my Comcast cable has an "On Demand" feature that lets you watch free movies. Not only can you watch any of several dozen classic films at your convenience, you can stop, pause, forward and rewind. Comcast should tout this service more aggressively. It is really neat.

Last night after dinner, wife, youngest and me watched "Das Boot" for the umpteenth time.

There are three movies that have special meaning and strong memories for me.

When "Mary Poppins" came out, we kids and my mom got to join my dad "Downtown" to see it -- at the Strand I think, maybe the Orpheum. Whatever, the movie palace was magical. In our youthful haste to get to the show, my little brother smashed his face into a traffic sign as he sprinted to the theater entrance. He went down like a stone.

Whatever brain damage that he incurred from that or the time I knocked his teeth out by pounding him with my plaster-casted broken arm, certainly hasn't held him back from being an incredible success with all the associated rewards that are richly deserved. I am proud of him and, thank God, he is nice to me.

For my First Date, I invited a good looking Visitation HS frosh to a movie and dinner. The movie was the new film, "Night of the Living Dead" which was playing at the Highland. The dinner was a large cheese pizza at Carbones.

It was way south of zero degrees and the roads were snow packed and icy. I told my folks that we were "taking the bus" to our date -- what a bad liar I was (am?)

I "borrowed" dad's land yacht, a Ford LTD that was too long for our garage door to shut behind. The parents were having a cocktail party and the garage entry was screened from the house, so I felt pretty safe.

I didn't count on getting stuck in the DeVine's Men's Clothing parking lot after the movie was over. It was just a little patch of ice, but the rear-wheel-drive behemoth simply spun it's wheels helplessly.

So I taught Sue how to drive.

She was 14. I was 15. I showed her what to do. Press the right pedal slowly and I will push. Once free, push the huge brake pedal.

It worked. The car was an eyelash away from catapulting into Ford Parkway but Sue managed to find that God sent brake pedal.

Carbone's was the icing on the disaster of a date. I think she was in a state of shock after her emergency driving lesson and she just sat mute and watched me eat the whole pizza without taking even one piece.

Got her home safe and sound and never came near her again -- she DID look good from a distance, but up close.... She was a dog. She had the personality of a mushroom. The movie sucked.

My Dad, my bride-in-waiting and I shoved a few bottles of beer into our heavy winter coats and went to see the new movie, "Das Boot" I have always been a germanophile and this movie sounded pretty good, since dad like WWII movies.

Dad was ready to get up and leave as soon as we found out that the movie was in German with subtitles, but the smuggled beers kept us in our seats for what turned out to be the best movie theater experience we had ever had.

I don't know how many times dad, Laura and me have seen it again, but it has been many.

Last night was like seeing the movie back at the theater again. The fond memories flooded back, although the movie is quite dark with a typically "german" depressing end. The HD picture looked fantastic and the booming sound from my 1000 watt speaker array was better than even at the theater back in the late seventies when we first saw it.

PS. I got the LTD back into the garage and closed the door as far as it would go, leaving the back end sticking out, as normal. Despite the risks and near disaster, I pulled it off. I thought.

I was greeted the next day with the news that my baby sister had left her mittens in the LTD and dad had gone out to the garage to retrieve them. He knew he didn't need to report it stolen. If there is one constant in my life, it is that I NEVER get away with ANYTHING !

The punishment must not have been too harsh 'cos I think dad might possibly have admired my foolish guts.


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

The Magic Ticket

Hi All!

I can't find my Magic Ticket.

On the way home from dinner with daughter and wife, a discussion ensued as to which parent the daughter thought of as psychotic, and who neurotic.

Daughter nailed ME on both. I carefully explained the distinction, not even a fine line, between the two. I am NOT neurotic -- I don't sweat small stuff.

I did not win the argument. But I didn't get to vote.

The restaurant was holiday-busy and my nice, red handicap ticket came in handy for a parking space.

I don't deserve one as much as many, I guess. But depending on the day, I truly can't walk a hundred feet without stopping and taking gasping for breath. Nature of my disease. Food not converted to energy. Sometimes the basement stairs become Mount Everest.

I "earned" my red placard this past June when my health was at a low ebb.

My doctor told me, not for the first time, that I would not see Christmas, and wrote up the application for a December 2006 expiration.

This month I showed up at the Doctor's Office, feeling better than I had in June. He wrote me up an extension for my placard, or ticket, if you will, that predicts I won't need it past June, 2007.

Something about those deadlines is one of the many reasons my rebellious soul keeps dragging my wasted corpus along, defying the learning of science and medicine.

I received my new "Magic Ticket" as referred to in an earlier post, and promptly lost it. And found it. And lost it again.

I am not superstitious, but part of me grasps these wonderful 6 month tickets as proof that I am still alive, and will be at least until the ticket needs renewing.

When we got home tonight, I asked everyone if the had seen my new handicap placard. The June, 2007 one. No one had, and I am totally, irrationally worried about this.

But it feels better to have gotten my psychotic/neurotic fear off of my chest.

OK, until I find it you can color me neurotic. Once I find it I will be just fa fa fa fa fffaaaa fine.



Sunday, December 24, 2006

Letter to a Son

Dear Son,

I love you.

Now that the formalities are done with, let’s get down with the heavy stuff.

You are at the point in your life when, as is said, “The world is your oyster.” Pry it open and find your pearl.

If I die with regrets (and I am determined NOT to…) I would feel like somehow I let you down. You have had a lot of nurturing and freedom and that was the goal I pursued for you. Sure, I had my control freak moments from the time I taught you to be left-sports-handed to marching you off to the High School of my choice, not yours.

In between, I did the best I could to let you grow into whatever you were to become. I hope that wasn’t interpreted as neglect.

I’m sorry if my drinking hurt you. Hopefully you will learn something from my suffering.

Trying to find the right amount of nurture and nature is tough. I should have given you more responsibilities when you were younger, so reality wouldn’t hit you hard, which it has or soon will, I hope.

If I have taught you anything, I hope it is that working hard and being happy are the two most important things in life.

Whatever course you choose, try to make it something you really want to do, from which career to pick, whether to marry and have kids and with whom and all of the big life decisions you will soon face.

I hope we can always be friends and that you will seek and respect my advice. I don’t think we have communicated very well and I’d like to see that change.

Finally, be prepared for adversity. You will be losing many loved ones over the next several years. You may have financial problems that put your education on hold. Stuff happens in general, at the least expected or opportune times.

Don’t dwell on them or dread them, but don’t be caught by surprise.

I will continue to work hard to do good things every day and to go to bed happy. I think it is keeping me alive.

Don’t wait until death stares you in the face to start living life as God means us to.



Tuesday, December 19, 2006

I Ain't Got Time to Be Unhappy

Hi All!

Your are in for a rare, or maybe not so rare treat.

Good writers produce drafts, sleep on them, run it by critical readers, blah blah blah.

I don't claim to be a great writer, in fact, I never have and never will make a penny for my thoughts, but I like to put things down right as I think about them.

I have pulled posts off of this record of drivel, and I have started drafts if the subject is too hot. I never end up publishing the drafts because the intensity of the moments when I am writing are soon gone, even though these drafts are workable into something one might care to read.

I just never go back to them. I wrote a long short story once and I think some of it got out because I was so angry at for burping and going off-line and garbling and losing half my stuff.

When I read the surviving text, I despaired. What a pile of shit.

The "Dark Side" of this season is the tensions of planning, shopping, dealing with relatives, etc. Y'know, "SSTTRESS!

Fortunately for me, or not, is that I am past caring about many things that have been and still could be hurtful to me and my loved ones. Not my problem. Theirs.

I have a big mouth like Cassius Clay and I lead with my chin, so if I was a boxer, I wouldn't have lasted a fight. With me, WYSIWYG and I have a very bad blind side to how others react to who and what I am and particularly what I say. This results in a wide circle of acquaintance with wildly differing opinions of me, with an uncomfortable number holding negative ones -- unfairly, I think. On the other hand, some "get me" and tolerate me and yet others really like me. Such is the price of being who I am.

When I observe people lying and manipulating and otherwise trying to make life less fun for me and my significant others, I build up duck grease on my back.

When I see or personally experience concrete, real injustice, I can still coil and try to strike, but that never seems to result in anything but getting my head cut off.

Every day is an opportunity to be happy (profound, eh? Where's my book deal?)

Speaking for myself, am learning (you never FINISH learning) that bad memories exist only in my own mind and thinking of them only hurts me. Same as what others think or do to me in the present.

Here is an illustration of how a stupid little thing or two made my day today, despite feeling like crap, physically and overextending myself, physically, trying to finish the Fall Chores with this nice little Overtime Period the weather has given us.

As noted in a previous post, my oldest got nailed on a crappy little scooter going 10mph because he didn't have "eye protection." Give me a break. Ah, but the officious Park Ranger asked for proof of insurance.

Long and short of this story is that it was 100% MY FAULT for not having insurance on MY SCOOTER and MY SON lost his drivers license and will have to pay fines and wait in line with a bunch of morons to take an idiot test to get it back. But the license suspension will haunt his driver record forever, and it cost him at least two job opportunities.

I appealed to the Administrative Review Board of the Department of Public Safety, offering to sacrifice MY license and let the offense go on MY record. I got a curt letter, signed unintelligably by some amused drone on Cedar Street saying that having reviewed the case, the Decision of The Commissioner of Public Saftey is hereby.....SUSSSSSTTTAAAAAINNNNEED!

Ok, that DID get my dander up -- I said I am still learning.

So, today comes my new Handicap placard from the Department of Public Safety with 5 crisp dollar bills stapled to the enclosure. Seems as though the $5 renewal fee for these placards are being waived -- I guess because of the budget surplus.

That made me happy.

Later, I went to the Club with my wife and played Tuesday Darts and I won a game of countdown after bragging that I would only need one dart to hit the last 9 -- and then simply nailing it. That target looked SO BIG that I KNEW I was gonna hit it.

So today was a happy day on balance. The back and the knee are useful for now, as I still have leftover Vicodin from my tooth extraction. I expect that tomorrow will find me pretty much confined to bed, where I will continue working through "The Responsible Christian" by a great theologian Father Vincent Rush, whom I was ever so blessed to have as a prof at St. Thomas.

The scholarly tome is pretty dense, as were the readings of Aquinas, Nietzsche, Plato, Aristotle and all the other influences that informed Fr. Rush's rather radical (for the time) ideas that cannot be very easily summed up.

Suffice it to say, that people who are happy, help others as best they can and live a moral life got it all over those who punch in with their envelopes at Church every Sunday.

I DO go to church, but I don't run over little old ladies in my rush to get a good parking space.

Well, I am gonna publish this and not read it until later tomorrow (might need to use the laptop in bed)

If you are lucky (or not) to have read it before I yank it or edit it all to heck, print off a copy and save it for me.


Monday, December 18, 2006

The Demon Traffic Light

Hi All!

I have actually lived with at least a dozen traffic semaphores that hate me -- personally. They can see me coming from blocks away and turn red a nanosecond into the "can I make it through on the Yellow or slam on the brake" moment.

My latest bête noire was installed at the intersection of Centerville Road and County Road E in Vadnais Heights.

What was for years a perfectly benign 4 way stop has morphed into a cruel tyrant. Since it was breathed into life last week it has held me on red every time from both directions. If there is no traffic coming crosswise, that street will have the Green. Just dare to get one car through the other way and it will change red, stay there, mocking you and do a left turn green against you even with no car waiting, just to twist the knife.

Don't get me started on Roselawn and Lexington. Oh, the wasted hours.


Friday, December 15, 2006

Swfities Detained

Hi All!

Why is it that we are supposed to sympathize with good, poor, hardworking folk that just happen to be in our country by breaking our laws?

Makes me mad enough to spit.

Meanwhile, let Pat Buchanan sort it out: Chain of Corruption


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Gas is a Blast

Hi All!

The news seems to be that those silly hybrid cars and E85 are for suckers. Don't get me started on biodiesel.

Bad a effing nuff that we have to force 10% corn squeez'ns down the throats of our gas tanks, but my less and less favorite Governor, Timid, Tiny Tim, is embracing all this alt-fuel bull crap.

Oh, and now we learn that cow farts contribute more to the myth of "Glowbawl Warrrrrming" than we puny ants cruising around on an infinite supply of natural fuel that God has given us.

I saw a Prius in a parking lot today. Looked to be in pretty rough shape. The back window was 50 percent obscured with Lefty stickers, y'know, "Wellstone!" "Kerry!" and the others that mean the following car to observe how damned enlightened the idiot cell-phone nattering airhead ahead, who can't see him/her out of the rear view mirror for all the stickers, um, is.


Behind the Curve

Hi All!

Since I first fancied myself a reporter in grade school, I have often fantasized about getting the Big Scoop. The Story that would make me a name for myself.

The Roseville Schools post was pathetically late and lame.

When I roused my ample expanse out of bed and padded--no,-- trundled into the kitchen, my wife hushed my morning greeting as her favorite station, 94.5, had a couple of wacky morning hosts ranting on the same subject. Simple googling informed me that I was many days late. The only thing current was that the School Board meeting had not taken place. I don't know what happened last night and I don't care because plenty of other reporters will surely report the decision.

Gosh, I'm depressed.



Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Roseville Schools Election Scandal!

Hi All!

I came across a disturbing article in the Stib which reported on a disputed election for Student Council and Central Park Elementary School.

The link to the article :

An enterprising young 11-year old, Jasmine, passed out fortune cookies which contained paper strips reading, "Vote for Jasmine for President."

Both Jasmine and her opponent, Willaim, also had posters, paper buttons and gave speeches.

When Jasmine won, William's parents cried foul, citing the cookies as an unfair financial advantage!

The ever-creative "school officials" decided to have "co-presidents" to make sure there was no winner or loser.

Enter Jasmine's parents who seem to think elections matter and took the case to the School Board. I will have to follow up to find out what happened.

Obviously, Jasmine must be a Rascally Republican and William a Sore-Loser-Liberal.

Shame on both sets of parents for making a big deal about it. The kids were fine with calling it a draw.

Another thing that jumped out at me from the article is the many highly paid administrators that were involved in the case. There was the principal, an assistant superintendent and a district spokesperson, as well as the school board.

We just aren't spending enough on education, are we?


Thursday, December 07, 2006

"If I could live over again I'd change every single thing I've ever done." Ray Davies

Hi All!

No, I am not retiring this one. The creative genius of the "Kinks' frontman" Ray Davies, leavened with the raw emotion of his little brother Dave has entertained me for years.

Tonight on VH1 there will air a "lost" BBC program featuring the Kinks Christmas Show of 1977, when they were fully in the middle of their long and continuing prime.

To say that Ray Davies is a sardonic wit, light years ahead of any other pop/punk/rock song writer is damning him with right faint praise.

Some day soon I will figure out how to link to music clips -- I know there are ones of "Father Christmas" on YouTube but they are of wretched quality. Perhaps someone will cop tonight's VH1 showing and put the viddy up soon, in which case my readers will be directed to check it out.

For now, here be the lyric of it. As in all good songs, the music is important and vastly improves the experience of hearing the words, but what can I say?

If you are intriqued, here is the awful quality YouTube clip:

PS. Just spent 35 minutes on hold with Comcrapst to learn that $50/mo. don't get me VH1-"Classic" so I guess the clip is all we have to enjoy. Bastards.

Eff This and Eff That...Johnny Rotten

Hi All!

I have officially retired that quote from the Wogsblog banner -- it's a bit too crude, even for me, but it meant/means very much to me and here is why.

The first two record albums I ever bought were "Bridge over Troubled Waters" by Simon and Garfunkel and "Abbey Road" by the Beatles. Before that I was hooked on Peter Paul and Mary, The Mamas and the Papas and Roger Miller, 'cos that was the stuff we had in the house.

As soon as I could ride a bike bravely, I began to hit the West Bank and spend hours flipping through and buying used LPs at places that reeked of incense and whatever (I believe that the last living brain cells in a human being is "smell memory."

Oarfolkjoeopus, The Electric Fetus, Cheapo, all of which still exist, I think, and a few that are long gone that were on Grand Ave. in St. Paul and 7 Corners on the West Bank.

Once I flipped upon the nude John and Yoko album sleeve and instead of making a $2 investment in something worth thousands today, I was afraid that the clerk wouldn't sell it to a kid. What a chickenshit I was.

When I heard a single, "Lola" by the Kinks, I had a new favorite band and I love them to this day and have most of Ray and Dave Davies' work and tons of memorabilia. 42 years of excellent music and they are still putting fantastic stuff out.

When I first heard "Exile on Main Street" by the Rolling Stones, the thing the Kinks started in me went straight into the animal part of my brain.

Then came Bowie. Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.

When I first heard "Nevermind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols" I forgot about everything else for awhile.

I was in London when "God Save the Queen" was banned by the BBC yet you could hear it everywhere on the street, especially in Hyde Park and Picadilly Square, Chelsea, in the Tube -- and, of course, Carnaby Square where I bought some punk items and thank God never used them to pierce my skin. -- you get the idea of how defiant, insidious, mean-spirited and absolutely brilliant this song was as it drew special attention to the Queen's 25th Anniversary of Coronation.''

The quote I am retiring is from "Bollocks" from an "in your face" anti-abortion song, "Bodies."

"She was a girl from Birmingham, she just had an a BOR SHUN!" Click it if you want to read the rest, but make sure you are sitting down and prepare to be sick.

Crude, simple and dead-on.

As I age and wizen, fire of that sort still burns in my heart. When I crank up new and old raving tunes with the incredible advances in DVD and CD technology the endorphins go off the charts.

When they dissect my brain, perhaps Science will find that I lived longer (or shorter) by being stimulated by loud, but lyrical and lucid and well-written music.


A Day That Will Live in Infamy

Hi All!

My Father-in-law's brothers fought in WWII. Allow me to share his story:

"I had two brothers in the European Theater, one in the infantry (John),
one in the Field Artillery (Frank) and Louie in the Pacific Theater.
Louie's plane, I believe it was a B-36 (the biggest bomber flying at
that time) was shot down with a full load of bombs coming over Nagasaki
the day before the second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. His plane
exploded in the air with the bomb bay doors open. He had flown the
required number of missions but continued to volunteer for extra
missions . He had been based on several different Pacific islands but
moved as the war progressed closer to Japan."

My uncles on both sides of my family fought in Japan and Europe. My Grandpa fought in WWI. We didn't lose anyone.

My dad was fortunate to have served in the Navy between wars. I prayed every night that I wouldn't have to go to Vietnam from the time I was in 5th grade until I had to register for the draft on my 18th birthday.

I didn't get into the "Lottery." We were pulling out of that quagmire and I, like my friends, lucked out. My only military training consisted of the 4-year ROTC program at Cretin HS and although we learned how to shoot and how to fix the damage caused, such as field tracheotomy, plugging a sucking chest wound and improvising tourniquets to stop the bleeding of severed limbs, I have never had to use those skills, thank God -- but I know what to do if I need to.

(I HAVE nailed a crow or squirrel with a BB gun on occasion -- I've bagged a few crows but rabbits and squirrels just get pissed off and come back as if nothing happened).

What a different world we live in today.

When I visit with vets at the Legion Club, the WWII guys like to tell their amazing stories -- the vets of the later "conflicts" generally won't.

Western Civilization is confronting the greatest threat to it's continued existence since Hannibal sacked Rome.

Millions, if more than a billion of fellow humans are determined to kill us. We can keep on whistling in the dark as long as we want, because the outcome of this epic struggle will not happen in our lifetimes, not in our kids' lifetimes. After that, all bets are off.

On this Pearl Harbor Day, let us take a good look at ourselves and wonder how blind, selfish and cowardly we have become, and how eagerly our foes suck that up and are further encouraged to spit in our faces as they arm themselves for the final battle.

I never believed the lefty chicken littles who said Iraq would be another Vietnam. Putting aside the obvious fact that this "war" is totally different, the old "cut and run" is the same.

In my humble view, we made a good mess -- and God help us, we have to clean it up.

When is America going to unite in a just cause and make the necessary sacrifice to keep the world a better and safer place?

I fear that this will not ever happen again.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Retiring Quotes

Hi All!

I carefully chose the quotes that appear on the banner of Wogsblog. Due to the limitations of my service provider, I can only use so many characters and spaces, and can't add any more.

But I wanna!

So I am thinking of retiring my old quotes and doing a post on why I used 'em.

First, let me know which one YOU think should go next. Just use the "comment" feature below. It's not very painful and it lets me know someone is out there, and you are welcome to be anonymous.

My feeling is that the John Rotten quote is a bit too blunt, but I would need to delete another one to make room for a decent replacement from the infinitely quotable "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" which is:

"I don't WANT to go in the cart...I'm feeling better... I think I'll go for a walk!" Terry Jones.

"You're not fooling anyone, you know." John Cleese.

Waht'cha tink?


Manic Wednesday Confirmed.

Hi All!

This is it! I am through posting today because things are too weird.

A loyal reader might remember my little "bits 'n pieces" experiments which I call "Jaegerschotz." as a sort of offhand reference to the expensive RedBull + Jaergermeister concoction that the youngsters like to drink and sink.

As I was reading my Google e-mail, an ad caught me eye. There is a site called
which refers one to a place to find this delicious alcoholic drink in your town.

From there, I went to the website of the Blarney Pub in Minneapolis, of which I hadn't or needn't of heard and checked out their events calendar, where I found the following promotion and I'm goin':

"'Holiday' is a hook-based high-energy, alternative poop band based out of Minneapolis. Holiday took first place in the 2005 cities97 Basilica Block compettition. They will be here at Blarney the next two wednesdays with an Unplugged version of their high-energy show."

Manic Wednesday?

Hi All!

I am "noticing" stuff today which usually means that my meds are out of balance, although the number of trips to the littlest room in the house confirm that at least the laxative is working....

From what I am given to understand about the report that was released today, I am sickened in my heart.

An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile,”Churchill said, “hoping it will eat him last.”

Rush Limbaugh summed up what I and many feel about the "Surrender Report" that came out today. He closed his show thus:

"Folks, I'll be back tomorrow after I throw up."

Now I have another link for you, which is the best commentary on the flying Imams ever printed.

You might have to register your email address to read it, but it is worth the effort.


A Great Bit of Writing

Hi All!

I use a nifty feature of Google that sends a daily list of references to whatever key words you want to use.

One of mine is "Kuettel" where I learn what identically named and probably somehow related newsmakers such as a ski jumper, a chef and a NASCAR crew chief are up to.

Another is "Liver Transplant" in which I have an obvious and urgent interest. Sometimes you will be surprised at what turns up.

For example, a few days ago I reworked and published a list of Democratic Inuaguration Night events. The passage ended up being "found" by Google and appearing on my next day's "Liver Transplant" email because my post contained those words in relation to Teddy Kennedy.

Today I found a great piece of writing. I sometimes have trouble watching "House" or "ER" on HDTV as they go into the operating room and do some pretty convincing surgery.

The passage I am going to lead you to is harder to read than those shows are to watch, but my what writing!

Unforuntately, it is heavily annotated by the blogger who doesn't cite the author. You have to scroll through half the post until you get to the part with a lot of red characters -- the beginning is a discussion of literature professors and is sort of skip-able.

Well, here it is. Hope you enjoy it:


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

This, You Gotta Read: Steve Forbes

Hi All!

Follow this link to one of the best wisdom I've read or heard since the election. I have always been a Steve Forbes fan, but now I am a firm adherent. This guy is RIGHT!

Please read: Tax Cuts Saved U.S Economy


Monday, December 04, 2006

Bloggers' Price of Success

Hi All!

I have met a few other bloggers in town, and am a member of the informal list of blogs called the MOB (Minnesota Organization of Bloggers.)

There are three super-successful blogs which are so popular that you often can't read them due to their servers being overloaded.

They are Powerline, Lileks and Captain's Quarters. I can't imagine the thousands of hits per second that these guys get, but it must be a lot.

Needless to say, Wogsblog doesn't experience this problem (sigh) but if one DOES get through to the big guys, I think my stuff holds up pretty well and in fact, save Lileks who is unbeatable for mirth, my stuff is at least second string.

Of course, Powerline brought Dan Rather down, so they got that going for them. I'm still awaiting my big scoop that will catapult Wogsblog into something that actually makes money!


Sunday, December 03, 2006

Are You 1080 or 720?

Hi All!

Cultural update: by now everyone has seen the commercial for DirecTV where the Jessica Simpson slaps down and subdues a randy cowboy with her spiked heel. The spot ends with the great line, "I don' know whaat 1080 DPI is, but Ah wahnnit."

No cheapskate, Jessica! Most HDTV is 720 DPI so far.

In the interest of keeping the readership up to if not ahead of the curve, I shall endeavor to explain.

High Definition TV is coming of age after a long gestation. Soon the ocean off-shore of China and the Malaysia, etc. will have new reefs created from big old American TV "tubes". Tubes. Imagine the backwardness of it all.

Soon every home will have plasma or LCD HDTVs hanging on the walls of rooms like paintings.

Without going too far into the details, suffice it to say that there are many types of "true" HDTVs and many "HD Ready" which will need a converter box. There are 3 main types and one of them is the huge floor honker the size of a refridgerator.

Folks, the big ones are plummeting in price for a reason -- they are totally Betamax.

Flat screen plasmas, which unlike all other big screens can be viewed from any angle without distortion. That technology is my bet to win, although LCD is cheaper and the screen doesn't throw off as much heat -- you heard that right, a big old plasma will keep a small room warm.

I know this guy who found a 46-incher plasma at a pawn shop. It was an off-brand name and they didn't know if it worked because they couldn't figure out how to hook it up.

The guy, who was definitely not in the market, threw caution to the wind and picked it up (well, actually it took two guys to pick it up) for a song.

Guess what. It not only worked, but it can to 1080 DPI!

Ok, enough suspense. DPI is "Dots Per Inch" (duh) so the bigger the DPI, the more detailed the picture. 720 is common and you'd really need to have super vision to tell the difference from 1080. But I predict that 1080 will be something of a short term status symbol until it becomes common.

So next time someone asks you, "Are you 720 or 1080?" You can say... "I'm waiting for the price to come down."


Democrat's Inaugruration Night Schedule

In hacking the internet, I came upon this secret document:

Agenda for the Democrats' Inauguration Night Ceremonies, January 2007

7:00 Opening flag burning.

7:15 Pledge of allegiance to the U.N.

7:30 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

7:35 Nonreligious worship led by Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton.

8:00 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

8:05 Ceremonial tree hugging.

8:15 Gay wedding with Barney Frank presiding.

8:30 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

8:35 Free Saddam Rally organized by Cindy Sheehan and Barbra Streisand.

8:45 Speech on "The Caliber of American Troops In Iraq" by Sen. Kerry.

9:00 Keynote: "Zee Proper Etiquette for Surrender" by French Pres.Jacques Chirac.

9:15 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

9:20 Collection to benefit the Ted Kennedy liver transplant fund.

9:30 Unveiling of a plan to free the freedom fighters from Guantanamo by Sean Penn

9:35 William Jefferson Clinton on "Why I Dislike the Military."

9:45 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

9:50 Dan Rather presented the "Truth in Broadcasting" award by Michael Moore.

9:50 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

10:00 "How George Bush and Donald Rumsfeld Brought Down the Towers" by Howard Dean

10:15 Installation of the new Democratic leaders of the House of
Representatives: Speaker--Nancy Pelosi; Judiciary Committee--John
Conyers; Ways and Means--Charles Rangel; Financial Services
Barney Frank; Energy and Commerce--John Dingell; Intelligence--
Alcee Hastings.

10:30 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

10:35 Installation of the new Democratic leaders of the Senate: Majority
Leader--Harry Reid; Armed Services--Carl Levin; Environment--James
Jeffords; Judiciary--Patrick Leahy; and Health,Education, Labor
and Pensions--Ted Kennedy.

11:15 A short talk on "Our Troops are War Criminals" by Senator Kerry.

11:30 Coronation of Hillary Rodham Clinton as the 2008 Democratic President.

12:00 Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.

12:05 Bill asks Ted to drive Hillary home.

The next two years should be really fun!!!


Friday, December 01, 2006

Garrison Keillor Delivers a Shock

Hi All!

I really used to like Keillor a lot. Still do, when he keeps his sniffy, phumphering nose out of politics.

So it was with great shock that I read these words attributed to our great local writer in Salon Magazine:

"Want to feel close to people? Come to church and sing. Whether or not you believe that the Creator of the Universe came to earth in the body of a child, the day itself is an enormous gift.
There are people who feel "excluded" by Christian symbolism and are offended by the manger and the angels and the Child, but there have always been humorless, legalistic people. Complaint is an American art form, and in our time it has been raised to an operatic level. To which one can only say: Get a life. When you go to France, you don't expect a stack of buckwheat pancakes for breakfast or Le Monde to print box scores. You're in France. Now you're in America. It's a Christian culture. Work with it."

(emphasis mine)

What a nice present! Merry Christmas to you, Garrison Keillor.