Sorry, Mr. McCain, I am Seeing Through Your "Maverick" Maneuvers

Senator John McCain has issued a statement today to suspend his campaign so he may return to Washington to help hammer out a bipartisan deal to fix the economy. What a great idea! Wait, why does he all of the sudden care about going back to Washington to cast a vote? Here are some facts courtesy of Nico Pitney in an Op-Ed on (an admittedly liberal source, but it does not change the facts).

2) The idea of uniting the campaigns to find a bipartisan solution to the Wall Street crisis wasn't even McCain's idea. A few minutes ago, Obama spokesman Bill Burton emailed to reporters:

"At 8:30 this morning, Senator Obama called Senator McCain to ask him if he would join in issuing a joint statement outlining their shared principles and conditions for the Treasury proposal and urging Congress and the White House to act in a bipartisan manner to pass such a proposal. At 2:30 this afternoon, Senator McCain returned Senator Obama's call and agreed to join him in issuing such a statement. The two campaigns are currently working together on the details."

3) John McCain has skipped more votes during this session than any member of the Senate except for Tim Johnson, who had major brain surgery. He has cast a single vote in five months, since April 9. All of a sudden, McCain is demanding that the presidential race shut down so he can return to Washington?

4) A reminder: President Bush was able to debate John Kerry while he was president. For all of his sudden urgency, McCain acknowledged just yesterday that he had not even read the administration's three-page bailout proposal.

Seems like more of the same politicking that this campaign is starting to have a hard time disguising.

"Last Request" by Paolo Nutini

So, tonight, I was flipping through channels and I saw that Palladia was showing "V Festival 2007." Fantastic line-up, I know.

But, most importantly, this gem of a song was playing when I turned it on. My only experience with Paolo Nutini is the song "New Shoes," admittedly catchy, but not really my thing. This song, however and Paolo's presence just caught me instantly. Perhaps I should have already heard this song, but somehow, it missed me.

So, for those of you like me, who missed it on the first go, here it is.

The Way I See It #295

Can we laugh at cancer? Is it
Funny to loose your breasts? Am I
Crazy to have humor when I lose
my hair? Should I ignore the
giggles while receiving chemo?
What if I nudge someone and
sneak a smile, even though I
have no eyebrows? Is it
inappropriate? Don't be
offended, it beats waxing!

These are the words of Julie Wade, cancer survivor from Seattle, Washington. This made me think of my maternal grandmother, who lost her own battle with cancer in 2006. Her strength of character while she suffered and her will to live during a long battle were remarkable. She insisted on making future plans throughout the struggle, it gave her hope and a reason to live.

More people need to have that kind of gusto for life, without having to suffer first. People need to laugh at themselves more often. Situations will seem less bleak and the love that surrounds us daily will be much more noticeable. I am thankful everyday for the people that I have in my life and if you are reading this, that includes you.

The little trivialities of life should be recognized as just that. Stop and listen to the music. It is beautiful. "Life is short but sweet for certain."

I Will Posess Your Heart

You know I really love this song. I am not doing a music blog on this song. Though the credit is as follows. The song is "I Will Possess Your Heart" by Death Cab For Cutie.

I just wanted to mention how much I love this verse in the song:

How I wish you could see the potential
The potential of you and me
It's like a book elegantly bound
But in a language you can't read just yet

I think this line is so brilliant and I just know that feeling that it conveys. It is such a gut wrenching feeling to know how you feel for someone and know what you have to offer to them, yet to feel there is no potential from their side, to be disregarded.

Oh, I am not whining about it as I am just as guilty of being on the other side of that equation. It is just so tough to see it happen, regardless of where you stand (Even if you are not in the situation directly, just seeing someone else go through it is not easy).

Anyway, just a thought...not meant to bring you down or anything. Just wanted to point out a beautiful lyric.


"Phantom Limbs" by The Shins

My first introduction to The Shins happened when the movie Garden State came out on DVD and my ex and I rented it. The movie's screenplay is written by one of the star's of the film, Zach Braff. He happens to be responsible for the soundtrack as well. Alright, enough of the hyperlinks.

"New Slang" which so prominently plays a role in the film as the "song that will change your life" was my first exposure to this indie-rock group. I won't go as far as to say it changed my life, but it did give me a) an appreciation for a new band & b) invaded my thoughts for a bit during that time. I lied about the hyperlinks, here is one to that song. But, this is not about that song it is about a song from The Shin's third album, Wincing The Night Away (I really can't help myself). The song in question is well, duh, "Phantom Limbs" as sited in the title.

The video attached has a ridiculously well-produced "school play."

Description pulled from Wiki:

Songwriter and lead singer James Mercer described it as "a hypothetical, fictional account of a young, lesbian couple in high school dealing with the sh*tty [sic] small town they live in."[2]

One other The Shins note: They recorded a version of the song "Little Boxes" that is featured on the TV show Weeds Really just an excuse for me to add another hyperlink. :-)

Hope you enjoy,


Not Feeling like blogging

The weekend in bullet points

~ Friday night...a blur
~ Kings Dominion Gay Night had short lines, yay!
~ Lord Arthur Jack screaming on all rides at all times is greatly amusing.
~ Great group of guys as traveling companions.
~ Ride home was 6 Moes in a car singing "Poor Unfortunate Souls" & other such music.
~ I have been writing this blog for 476 years and I have NEVER...Been SO Insulted...In MY LIFE!
~ Going to Town when I got home was a good investment of time.
~ Bud Light Lime should come in bucket form at Nellie's *shakes fist*
~ Nellie's should also show the Colts games downstairs for my viewing pleasure.
~ Running into some people just drives me nuts.
~ Sunday night karaoke was an intimate gathering of friends
~ Gin & Tonic boy turns out to be really awesome and dealt well with our craziness.
~ Sleeping on a couch will never compete with sleeping in my own bed
~ Good conversation was had with a very good friend

So not much of a story but a synopsis somewhat

How are you, world?


"The Blower's Daughter" by Damien Rice

While kind of a depressing song, it is used perfectly in the opening and closing scenes in the movie, "Closer" ( a must see, more on that in about 2 paragraphs...I promise). Damien Rice is a Irish folk singer, who has had limited success, but is great none-the-less.

This song is one of those that resonates in my mind well after I hear it. With lines like:

And so it is
Just like you said it would be
Life goes easy on me
Most of the time
And so it is
The shorter story
No love, no glory
No hero in her skies

It is all too hauntingly familiar.

"Closer" is one of the rare movies that has been able to seemingly come across as real, meaning the dialogue doesn't seem contrived or forced. The brilliant acting ability of the cast of Julia Roberts, Clive Owens, Jude Law & Natalie Portman is incredible. Both Clive & Natalie received Best Supporting nods. The movie unfortunately got eclipsed by "Million Dollar Baby", "Ray", "Finding Neverland", "The Aviator" & "Sideways" for a Best Picture nod. Admittedly all brilliant movies, but still unfortunate.

Anyway, as always I hope you enjoy it for what it is and that on some level it makes you think (it is a reflective song).


September 11, 2001: En Memoriam

My good friend, The Diarist posted a blog recounting his day seven years ago and has inspired me to write my own.

I set my alarm for 8:00 that morning to allow myself ample time to reach my 3rd interview for a new job at 9:45. I took a shower & had some cereal and returned to my bedroom in the basement of my Dad's townhouse. I turned on the news somewhere between 8:45 and 9:00 am, and saw that a plane had hit the first WTC building. I was in shock and couldn't understand how a flight could get that off track. I called upstairs to my stepmother and had her turn on the TV and called my mother, who was getting ready for work at home herself around 8:55.

She answers the phone and I immediately ask her to turn on her TV. She takes a second to get into the living room at her place and I hear her gasp at the sight of the tower burning. We talk about it and speculate how someone could possibly have a malfunction that would would steer them into the center of the tallest building in world. Then at 9:00 am, I see the unthinkable happen on my TV as the plane hits the second building and the instant understanding as I say "Oh my God!" into the phone. My mother says "What?" as her TV satellite is slightly behind in signal and she immediately gasps and then screams.

I take my phone upstairs and my stepmother calls my dad, who is on his way home. My mother hangs up her phone so she can make calls to her side of the family. I try to call the manager who is interviewing me and I don't get through. So, after telling my stepmother that I will be right back, I depart for my interview across town.

I get there around 9:25 or so and the GM is standing in the lobby of the hotel where the job fair was being held watching the TV. He looks at me introduces himself, offers me the job and tells me to go home to be with my family. I suggest that he does likewise, thank him and get in my car.

As I am driving home and listening to the radio at 9:37 the Pentagon is struck and these horrible images of dozens of planes targeting sites around the country fills my head. I rush home get there and my dad and stepmother are watching the coverage as they report the 4th plane crashing in PA.

Around noon, I remember that I am the manager of a Blockbuster and that I may have employees, who are still there and have no idea what to do. I try calling them and as most of you remember from that day calls just weren't going through anywhere. I get my stuff together and drive out to Springfield to see what is happening at the store. My assistant manager was there and she had sent home everyone else. I relieved her and thanked her for her actions and told her to go home to be with her family.

I kept the store open until my employees came in at 6:00 pm, so I could make sure that they knew to go home. But, remarkably at about 5:45, I started to get business (grocery store right across from me). So, I stayed open to supply people with something to take their minds off of the tragedy, if just for a moment. The twins (I had twin Customer Service guys) came in and told them that they should go back home. They saw the people at the store and refused to leave until I could as well.

So, sometime around 9:00 pm, the Giant closed up and we followed that example. Before we left we lit candles and the 3 of us stood in vigil outside the stores and were joined by some of the others who were still there to say a little prayer.

Every September 11th, I remember. I remember the shock. I remember the terror. I remember the uncertainty. I remember the kindness. I remember the unity.

People for a brief moment put away their difference and united as a world. United, we are kind. United, we are open. United, we love. United, we stand.

I only wish it did not take such great tragedy for us to remember the strength of unity.

Much Love,


The Pursuit of Knowledge: Election 2008

So, we are in the final swing of the 2008 Election. The major parties have their tickets put together in pretty little packages. The minor parties do not have enough presence to warrant discussion. No one's platform has been clearly defined and we are being asked to vote for "change" by both sides of this The mudslinging has started. But, before you duck for cover, make sure you have all the facts you need to make an informed decision on November 4, 2008.

Some great sources for information:

~ is a great non-partisan website that lists information on each candidate and where they stand on the issues.

~ has a nice countdown clock to remind you how much time you have until it is time to start voting and some tabs at the top with each candidate and a couple of news feeds about each.


Sept 26, 2008: Presidential debate w/ domestic policy focus, U. of Mississippi, Oxford, MS
Oct 2, 2008: Vice Presidential debate, Washington University, St. Louis, MO
Oct 7, 2008: Presidential debate in a town hall format, Belmont U., Nashville, TN
Oct 15, 2008: Presidential debate w/ foreign policy focus, Hofstra U., Hempstead, NY

~ Talk to your friends that you know who actually have smart political opinions (keyword: smart) that have decided on whom they are voting. Understand that they will have their biases already in place and make sure you talk to someone who is voting for each of the major candidates, so you may hear at least both sides with equal bias. This is by far my least favorite way to proceed, but it is better than being uninformed.

Please, take the opportunity to allow yourself to be open enough to make an informed decision and vote using your head and heart (yes, both of them).

I know it is interesting for me to be putting a blog out there about seeking non-partisan information after posting a blog about my dislike for a candidate; however, that is just my opinion and you are welcome to factor that how you please. Your opinion may vary and that is great that means you actually have an opinion and are at the very least on your way to making a smart decision.

If you have any other good sites to look at let me know. If you have an opinion that you would like to share, please attach it opposed to my last blog and we will try to keep this link as neutral as possible.

Good luck and happy voting!


An Article About Sarah Palin

Here at the is an article written by Eve Ensler, best known for writing The Vagina Monologues. In this article she talks from a Feminist's point-of-view and how everything that Sarah Palin believes in is antithetical to the Feminism.

From an environmental stand-point, I will not allow myself to vote for a ticket that has someone who's state is suing the Federal government over the inclusion of the polar bear to the endangered species list, because it interferes with the state's ability to drill for oil and gas. I think this article is well written and better describes how I have been feeling about this election since Mrs. Palin's addition to the McCain ticket.


Ridiculous Website of the Week: Ask A Ninja

For a good laugh check out Ask a Ninja

Personal favorite: "Minjas"

What is yours?

First thing to know...people lie.
Second thing to know...don't ever trust someone beyond what they have earned.
Third thing to know...when dealing in a situation where something feels wrong, it probably is.

Alright, so what am I talking about? Well, over the course of my life time and through dealing with compulsive liars growing up, playing poker for a living & dating someone who was less than honest I have honed my skills of lie detecting to a degree that is almost scary. And guess what it boils down to two things: Observation & Pattern Recognition.

I observe everything when watching a person. From the way they stand, how often they blink, their hands, the nervous habits that they do when they are uncomfortable, inflection of their voice, their pulse & their eyes. Most of this just comes second nature and I don't realize I have done it until someone does something that goes against their typical mannerisms and style.

That is the aspect of pattern recognition. Noticing when something is out of the ordinary and analyzing why. Why are you looking away when you always look dead in my eyes when talking? Why did you hesitate before saying that last bit? Why did you rush through your entire commentary when you are usually very measured? Are you clinching your fists? This extends beyond the scope of just lie detection into the realm of emotional recognition, as well. Seeing into the depths of a person's psyche beyond the smile on their face, etc.

Why is this so important? Well, take a look at the first statement. People lie and if you can detect it, you are given a leg up on them and everyone else as the knowledge is power. I play poker and if I could not detect a bluff, I would not be as good at it as I am. I would be purely playing on statistical value, which has its merits but is only part of the full picture.

There, however, are people out there that are hard to get a read on when they are lying. Either they have honed that skill very successfully (Politicians :-p) or they are just compulsive liars. When dealing with the latter I just assume that everything that they say that I can't confirm is a lie and move on. I tend to sever ties with people who are exhibiting a pattern of lying, it is for the best. Nothing will bother you more than someone that knows that you know that they are lying but continues to do it anyway.

There is reason why you have to earn trust and it is not just doled out to the masses. People don't know how to handle having so much power and we abuse it. We just can't help ourselves, its a weird fascination with testing our boundaries and such. I test another boundary; however. What happens when someone tells the truth all the time? Is this acceptable or are there situations where a lie is appropriate and maybe even necessary? I think there are situations where lying is the easiest way out, but I prefer in those situations to keep my responses short and not give out so much of the truth as to harm someone.


1. Pay attention
2. Question variances
3. Trust your instincts
4. The truth will set you free


Schooling and Such

Last week I started my classes. I am taking them all on-line and am very happy with my fast progress in my classes. It feels good to be an overachieving nerd again. I have learned that I have no desire to be an accountant, I could teach the first 2 chapters of Statistics and I think I wrote my business book. So, overall a very good feeling scholastically.

I have decided to again put a hold on alcohol consumption for many reasons, but I think it to be necessary mainly because I have become an Emotional Drunk and that just won't do. I like to be stable and in control of my emotions but recently I have been an absolute wreck after getting intoxicated. NO BUENO!

So, if you see me with a drink in hand anytime in the coming week, do me a favor and slap it out of my hand. NUFF SAID!

On to other fronts. I think I am going to force myself to survive with living in Manassas Park at least until May of next year, though I am sure that I will still have my crazy streaks, it has lent well to my studying needs. Then I will decide if I need to relocate to Fairfax, DC, or College Park based on scholastic desires.

I hope everyone had a great Labor Day Weekend and that this week has gotten off to a good start.


How To Be Dead by Snow Patrol

So, this week on my musical blog, I am reintroducing people to Snow Patrol and their musical efforts prior to the success of the single "Chasing Cars". this song is from the Album Final Straw. The album features many other great songs that I encourage to you to listen to in your own time. Check out "Run" & "Chocolate"

Anyway, enjoy the sounds of a great band


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