Thursday, April 24, 2008


welcome to the 100th post at

i wasn't entirely sure how this milestone should've been celebrated. for a minute, i thought i'd just add the little heading at the top, then write another one of my typical posts. more business as usual. brush it aside like its no big deal, and really... its not.

upon further deliberation, i realized that it needs more attention than that. something out of the ordinary to mark the occasion. but what? i googled for other blogs who celebrated their 100th posting and found that most people chose not to celebrate their blog, but themselves. typically with 100 personal facts. that seemed too self absorbed for my blood. i saw someone else who wrote a sentence synopsis of each of the previous 100 entries to honor them. that seemed like a redundant waste of time.

instead, i'm choosing to honor the fallen soldiers.

in blogging, as you write a post, it autosaves the draft every minute or so. it remains a mere draft until you elect to "publish" it, making it public and visible for all the world to see. there have been many times when i had an idea i wanted to write about but was pressed for time and only got a few sentences down. there have been times when i thought i had a clever approach but ended up hitting a dead end. there have been times when i began writing but by the time i came back to finish it, it wasn't that interesting to me any more. 28 times actually. whatever the reason, these drafts have been sitting in the ether collecting virtual dust.

so, in their honor, i present to you a tribute to the ghosts of blogs that never were:

(reason: i wanted to find the specific instances on tv to quote them in the post but never did. also, the post was written poorly, more as an outline of ideas.)
i had noticed that the term "m.i.l.f." had been popping up on late night television. then started hearing it in prime time and even once in the evening news. i speculated on how an acronym for "doing someone's mom" became acceptable in light hearted conversation.

(reason: never finished and then forgotten. it may potentially get a full treatment some day, as its a fairly funny story)
i heard that mirroring someones behavior is a subconscious way of building an unspoken connection between two people. its commonly seen in flirting. i described a day at work in which i reflected the personalities & mannerisms of people who came into our shop to try and boost sales. mostly, it was about a disheveled fellow who swore like a trucker and his compliments about my laugh, which sounded remarkably similar to his own.

(reason: i realized the subject was a bit on the boring side. lots of information. i'd also been writing about TV a lot around the same time and thought i may be over doing it)
this was a point/counterpoint post about the writers' strike while it was still in the "talks" phase. i declared my support for their cause but feared a flood of new reality programming on TV.

(reason: i liked this one but wanted to revise it. the draft was overly lengthy)
this was a run down of the large hadron collider experiments by CERN, held deep underground beneath Switzerland and France. while a lot of people fear that the experiment could go horribly wrong, creating a big bang that implodes into a black hole, killing us all, i couldn't be more for it. i started listing scenarios in which we either create a race of physics defying super creatures, open wormholes between dimensions in space-time or at the very least, a boom era for science fiction writers and film makers.

(reason: never completed. i had a list of idea but never went back to elaborate.)
after the release of the iPhone and a camping trip in which i declared my marshmallow toasting stick as my iStick, i was compelled to put forth some product ideas for apple in hopes of getting in on some of that sweet new gadget moolah. technologically upgraded things like fiber optic shoelaces, wi-fi braces for teens or flat screen television screens built into the tops of urinals, to name a few.

(reason: again, at the time, i was posting a lot on topics of my disdain for celebrities and thought i was beating a dead horse.)
i discuss the nature of fame. the financial perks. the get out of jail free cards. the opportunity to date sexy celebrities (and have people care about it). i then come to realize that fame generally sucks, and the best kind of fame is the kind that doesn't come until after you're dead. post mortem celebrity status.

(reason: while i'll stand by my position on the muppets 100%, this one made me sound like king of the super nerds)
the second season of The Muppet Show came out on DVD and i bought it the first day it hit the market. basically, i just listed a bunch of specifics on why the muppets, while helmed by Jim Henson and Frank Oz in the 70's and 80's, were nothing short of brilliant.

(reason: never finished but i think one day it will be.)
i've always secretly kind of wanted to get struck by lightning. you hear about people being struck every so often but you never hear about them dying. it doesn't even cripple them. i'm sure it would hurt crazy bad, but how many people do you know who can say they're been struck by lightning.

(reason: not many people know about the show and its never on television any more, nor are any of the episodes available to buy, so i thought raving about something people can't access would be cruel.)
i procured bootleg DVDs of both seasons of The Sifl & Olly Show and the never aired third season through ebay. it was a program with a cast of sock puppets that aired on MTV in the early 90's. i went on about how funny sock puppets can be, how comedy does not require a big budget, what the creators had done since the show was cancelled and a brief psychoanalysis about why i seem to constantly be lured by the charms of clever ventriloquists.

(reason: never finished and started going off on to tangents.)
i talk about growing up in a house without the best insulation. how we felt the seasons inside. how it got very cold in the winter and really hot in the summer. i connect this to why i like the autumn months the best and why i feel i would much rather it be too cold then too hot. there's always room for another blanket or a thicker sweater, but you can only take off so much clothes before your spending time in prison. i then graphically explain why going to prison naked is a really, really, really bad idea.


Wednesday, April 23, 2008


dear partially hydrogenated soybean oil makers-

i'm aware that your partially hydrogenated oils are in thousands of mass produced foods. you've basically had the market cornered for decades. i understand that its cheap and prevalent. now, it seems, the partially hydrogenated soybean oil dynasty is crumbling. your industry is going down faster than the brass on the titanic.

the health conscious have unanimously revolted against your oil. they have a whole list of reasons. they say it makes you fat. that is decreases your lifespan significantly. i think these are excuses to cover up their chief qualm. it can't be with oil. you can thank the public relations team for the olive oil makers for convincing the world that oil is good for you. it can't be with the soybean. soy has become synonymous with healthy living. that leaves only the "partially hydrogenated" aspect. therefore, the problem, i believe, is with your work ethic.

partially hydrogenating obviously isn't fairing well for you these days. when the same old, same old is no longer good enough for your consumers, its time to upgrade. time to up the ante.
i say "commit!"

i say get up a little earlier. i say get to the soybean oil factory and don't leave until you've hydrogenated to the fullest. no more of this partial business. seriously, guys. hydrogenate your faces off.

don't sell yourselves short, fellas. try to remember the passion you had for hydrogenating in the beginning. back when soybean oils were only being hydrogenated by a select few. the best of the best. an underground network of hydrogenating fore fathers with little more than a dream & a pure love for the craft. that rewarding feeling of pride can be your's again. imagine what you could achieve if only you'd apply yourselves. you have too much potential to settle for "good enough". fully hydrogenated soybean oil is NOT a pipe dream!

we're americans. we don't want fractions of anything. give us the full treatment, already. we're an all-or-nothing society. we don't partially cook chicken, we don't tell jokes about chickens that partially cross the road, and we don't partially hydrogenate oxygen. we fully hydrogenate it. we want water, not gas. if you think about it, it makes sense.

your biggest fan,


Thursday, April 17, 2008


have you ever heard a new band and thought you were experiencing something special? not just musically, but an awareness of a potential. a somehow smug feeling like you were there in the beginning. like catching a Radiohead gig when they were just a little college band known as On A Friday. imagine seeing the Beatles in one of those smokey little german bars before "I Want To Hold Your Hand".

take Ghost Away as your chance to get in on the ground floor.

the up and coming electronic indie rock band comes to you without the aid of a record deal. without a $1000 an hour producer helming the console. without ever even trying out for american idol. its middle man free. songs written, performed, recorded and produced by the artists.

their debut album Siberia was unleashed on the public this past monday. it plays like the echoes of abandoned machinery in the haze of a blizzard. the decaying beats and electronic noodling bear a mechanical quality and when paired with lots of acoustic guitar, multiple singers and layered vocals, drums and driving bass lines, you hear the music in the machine.

their machine, it seems, is comprised of many parts. there are moments of mellow contemplation like on "Holding Back The Ocean" and "Siberia", the title track. "Back Row Souls" showcases a radiohead-esque style of arrangement, bringing in subdued horns that creep up on haunting vocals. they even rock out a bit here and there, especially on "Turnaround", the album's final 8 minute track.

as the name of the album implies, there's a feeling of open space accompanying the sound. the introspective lyrics feel like eaves dropping without the guilt. the production is very clean and the reverb almost echoes. Siberia is an album with a tone washed over it. it takes you somewhere if you let it. a place of lush melodies and post rock rhythms.

Ghost Away's Siberia is available to all as a free download from the Ghost Away website. as a special added bonus, included with the songs is a digital booklet of original artwork and complete lyrics.

you can also check them out on myspace for news and upcoming tour dates.



last sunday, in Vancouver, WA., 11 year old Tyler Hemmert was slacking off in a park with his friend, Nate. another kid came along and they got into an argument. the disgruntled boy, in a temporary fit of rage, released the might of his weapon, a stainless steel butter knife (butter knives are the new nunchucks). Nate ducked to avoid the blunt object as it hurled through the air. Tyler, unfortunately, won't be winning any awards for his quick reaction time.

the business end pierced the skin of Tyler's head and four inches of it entered and lodged between the scalp and the skull. a pain he would later compare to that of a bee sting. he stood there somewhat dumbfounded by the fact that he could see a floating butter knife handle in his peripheral vision. he said, “I just tried to tell myself to stay calm and stuff.” Nate, the lassie of Vancouver, rushed off and retrieved Tyler's dad. Mr. Hemmert left the knife in place (a decision based on the fact that he's "seen a couple of these [medical] shows") so Tyler was carted off in an ambulance with the butter knife still in his head. Thankfully he did, or we wouldn't have this great x-ray.

"Pretty much everybody's talking about it and stuff. They're like, 'Oh, my God, it actually happened to you. I can't believe it." Tyler's friends have even begun calling him "butterhead".

the wound required 5 stitches and Butterhead is expected to make a full recovery.

authorities have not yet decided whether or not to file charges against the butter knife ninja. Butterhead hasn't seen his assailant but he heard that he wanted "to come over my house to apologize and stuff".

(this story is completely true. you can't make up a story like this one about Butterhead unless you make your living as a screen writer for american pie movies. i gathered this information from the ABC evening news last night, a transcript of an interview with Butterhead on the Today Show and the MSNBC website.)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008



for the first time in my voting lifetime, Pennsylvania will actually play a fairly crucial part in the democratic primaries. it comes down to either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton. as an aid to my fellow Pennsylvanians, here's a rundown of where the two candidates stand.
truthfully, both Barack and Hillary are more or less in agreement about most policy issues so i'll try to focus on where they differ. hopefully i can help any of you still teetering on the fence.

i'll try to be impartial. i think its more important that people take an interest in the election process and vote than for who they actually vote for. if you care, you can do some research on your own.

Obama voted for a mandate on automobile manufacturers to produce vehicles with an average fuel efficiency of 40 miles per gallon by 2017. Clinton voted against it. the senate, over all, ended up voting against it.

Obama opposed the war from the beginning. Clinton voted to support Bush in going to war with Iraq. both have set up plans for withdrawal within approximately a year in the event that they are elected president.

both plan to reduce health care cost significantly. Clinton's plan would provide tax breaks for small business and mandate that all americans be insured. Obama would also provide tax breaks but only mandates that all children be insured.

Clinton was a prominent lawyer who worked a lot in the corporate machine, then the first lady of Arkansas, then the first lady of the U.S., then was elected to a senatorial seat from new york in 2000. Obama was more of a grassroots lawyer, working mostly with for the "huddled masses". he was a state legislator for Illinois and became a senator from that state in 2004. as a part in government, Clinton wins out, but as an elected official, Obama has 12 years experience compared to Clinton's 8 years.

Obama is not a white woman. Clinton is not a black man.

Clinton fans always cheer for her "shoulder pad choke", a twist on the cross-face chicken wing. Obama favored the "backspring leg lock" until 2002, then he switched to the "atomic twister".

Obama voted that cup B was the Pepsi product but was denied by the soda judiciary committee. Clinton managed to assess the correct beverage as first lady, and as a senator, has absolved to eradicate the suffering of cola deciding confusion.

Clinton has a firm stance against dating before the age of sixteen. Once of age, she has a plan to help enforce curfews and delegation of use for the household station wagon. Obama wants to appoint more responsibility on america's youth and has stated repeatedly, "our children need to find their way. we need to teach them to see the signs, and if the vibe is there, to act. first base is within grasp. that's why i'll make first date kissing a priority during my first 100 days in office."

Obama believes that they wobble. Clinton believes that they won't fall down. both positions have voters concerned about a middle class tax hike.