Angry White Male

Thoroughly thought out completely random musings of an incredibly stupid, opinionated, close-minded person.


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Change We Can Believe In!
11.24.08 (10:12 am)   [edit]
change

Barack Obama is all about "change," ain't he? It was one of the main taglines of his campaign. If you log onto BarackObama.com, you're even greeted with the quote "I'm asking you to believe. Not just about my ability to bring about real change in Washington...I'm asking you to believe in yours."

If you're interested in the kind of "change" Obama is bringing, the kind of "change we can BELIEVE in," look no further than his current administration picks:

Vice President: Joe Biden - United States Senator for 35 years.
Chief of Staff: Rahm Emanuel - Bill Clinton advisor from 1993-1998, House of Representatives since 2003.
Deputy Chief of Staff: Max Baucus - U.S. Congressman 1974-78, U.S. Senator 1978-present.
Health and Human Services Secretary: Tom Daschle - U.S. Congressman 1979-87, Senator 1987-2005.
Secretary of State: Hillary Clinton - she's the n00b of the group, Senator since 2000.
Secretary of Commerce: Bill Richardson - Current New Mexico Governor, U.S. Representative 1983-1997.

That's just a quick list. You can look over the rest of Obama's picks for White House staff and Cabinet Officials yourself, you'll be hard pressed to find someone that isn' a career congressional staffer or simply a rehash from the Clinton administration. As we slowly count down the days until "Change we can believe in" takes place you can probably expect what we've had for the last 20 years...more of the same. PROVE ME WRONG, BARRY!



 
CSI: Miami
11.17.08 (9:08 pm)   [edit]
My wife watches this show every Monday.

I fucking hate David Caruso. HATE him! I swear, every time I see him take off his sunglasses, or put them on, or put his hands on his hips, or say someone's name like its a question (Frank?), or tilt his head and deliver a snarky comment to a "perp," or KICK THE FUCKING DOOR DOWN ON A BUST (BECAUSE HE'S A FUCKING CSI AND THAT'S WHAT A CSI DOES...GO ON BUSTS!!!!) I want to punch him in the balls so hard that the pain actually opens a hole in trans-dimensional space and travels back through time to the night little Davey Caruso was conceived and makes his father double up in a fetal position because it hurts so bad.

Assface

 
Something to Think About
11.04.08 (9:09 am)   [edit]
I'm not one of those do-gooders that thinks we should "all go out and vote." I honestly do believe that some people should stay home on election day...because they have no business voting in the first place. I don't feel like writing an essay on this. Instead, if you think I'm nuts, please check out this column by one of my favorite writers, John Stossel.

A Duty Not to Vote?

While we're at it, did you know that there IS NO RIGHT TO VOTE in federal elections in this country? Don't believe me? Go find the part of the United States Constitution that says you have a right to vote...I'll wait. (HINT: it's not the 15th, 19th or 26th Amendments.)

Can't find it? Still need more proof?

Read this little ditty by Neal Boortz. (Make sure to check out his links.)

You can also read this paper by Congressman Jesse L. Jackson, Jr., Fighting for a Right to Vote Constitutional Amendment.

The United States Supreme Court has ruled time and again that there is no individual right to vote in federal elections.

 
America, F*ck Yeah!
11.03.08 (10:46 pm)   [edit]
Snapped this picture at the Sertoma Cajun Air Festival this weekend. Thought I'd have a little fun with it.

AMERICA

Maybe we'll all keep this in mind tomorrow, regardless of how our chosen candidates perform.

 
Greatest Movie Line Ever
11.01.08 (3:28 pm)   [edit]
In honor of election day coming up.

I'm no big John McCain fan, and you may not be either, but do us all a favor and vote against this pair of disingenuous humps running on the Democrat ticket.

 
Heavyarms' Limehead Mar-ger-ee-ta Recipe
07.24.08 (4:49 pm)   [edit]
The actual title is Heavyarms' "Knock You on Your Fucking Ass" Margaritas, but I'm sure that wouldn't pass tblog's strict headline censorship guidelines. In honor of National Tequila Day (July 24).

I typically don't go for girly drinks, but I like margaritas. (What are "girly" drinks? Easy! Anything that doesn't start with "BE" and end in "ER" or anything that doesn't involve something from a bottle labeled "Jack Daniels" can be considered a girly drink.) This recipe, like most recipes, was borne of necessity. My family and I went to the beach for vacation last week and I wanted to make margaritas for me and the missus. However two trips to two separate grocery stores revealed a shortage of those little frozen limeade canisters, so I had to make due.

2 parts Simply Limeade (Simply Orange brand, its with the yogurt and milk and cheese and stuff)
1 part tequila (Heavyarms advocates reposado or aƱejo tequilas, or at least a good (not harsh) oro)
1 part triple sec (no preference here)

This mix is simple and sweet and easy to drink. If the people that make Lemonheads made Limeheads and then someone made a drink that tasted like that, this is what it would take like. If it's too sweet for you, squeeze a lime in to it. After 1 I'm feeling "confident." 2 and I've all the courage in the world. 3 and...well, I never make it past 3.

For the love of God, don't put salt on it, and don't use it to make frozen margaritas. Salt is for dorks, tourists, and people that don't know any better. Frozen is for girls. (Not just girls, but girly girls at that.)

EDIT: Apparently "Heavyarms' Limehead Margaratias" doesn't pass censorship-ial muster, either.

 
Nice Guys Finish Last...
07.02.08 (11:04 am)   [edit]

I really hadn't planned on posting so soon after my last one, but I posted this on a message board I hang out on, and thought it was good enough to share:

...and sometimes get a nice punch in the nards, too!

So, yesterday I was sitting in traffic on a tiny little service road waiting to turn on to a busy highway. It was backed up a good eighth of a mile. "Screw this," I thought, and decided to cut through the parking lot of what was (I thought) a closed-for-business skating rink. I have done this probably 20 times in the last six months, and have NEVER seen a single car in the parking lot for this skating rink. Why do I do this, well, at the end of this access road is a stop sign, and people are always trying to turn left across this four-lane highway, DESPITE the fact that there is a "No Left Turn" sign.

It had been about six weeks since I took this little detour, and on this day I noticed that there were about six cars in the parking lot. I also noticed that there was a new sign up that said "Skate Galaxy." I said to myself, "Self, we better stop cutting through this parking lot. Looks like this joint is open."

Right as I made the left turn in to the parking lot, I see two Sheriff's deputies standing in the parking lot and one is motioning for me to stop. As I roll my window down, she says to the other deputy, "Here comes another one, you can handle this one." At this point she walks behind my vehicle to another vehicle that had just pulled in the parking lot and the other deputy walks to my window.

"How are you doing this afternoon?" he asks.
"Just fine, sir, and you?"
"Fine. Sir, were you cutting through this parking lot to avoid that stop sign?"

"LIE! LIE YOUR ASS OFF!" My brain was thinking.
"TELL HIM YOU WERE ON THE CELL PHONE WITH YOUR WIFE (this is true) AND YOU DON'T LIKE TO DRIVE AND TALK AT THE SAME TIME SO YOU WERE GETTING OFF THE ROAD UNTIL YOU FINISHED THE CALL!!!" (lie)
"TELL HIM YOUR CHECK ENGINE LIGHT IS ON (true, I need to replace the O2 sensor) AND YOU WERE PULLING OVER TO POP THE HOOD!" (lie)
"TELL HIM YOU NOTICED THIS PLACE WAS OPEN AND YOU WERE PULLING IN TO CHECK THE HOURS BECAUSE YOU WANT TO BRING YOUR KIDS!!" (lie)

"Yes, I'll be honest with you, I was cutting through this parking lot to avoid all that traffic. I didn't even realize this place was open again."
"Well, I appreciate your honesty, sir. may I see your license, registration and proof of insurance?"
"This is a ticket-able offense?"
"I'm afraid so, sir.
Trespassing on private property to avoid a traffic signal. They have been complaining that a lot of people have been doing this and there are lots of kids in the parking lot."

About this time, the deputy and I both notice that the vehicle that the female deputy stopped was driving off and exiting the parking lot.
"You're letting her go?"
"She said she just pulled over to feed her baby."

The deputy turns his attention back to the vehicle and we both watch it turn left and exit the parking lot. He turns back to the other deputy, "Well, she ain't stoppin' to feed her baby. Don't you want to go get her?" The second deputy shrugs. He turns back to me to receive my license, registration, and proof of insurance, saying under his breath "I'd go get her, but hey, she's the supervisor." To me, "Let me go run your license and I'll be right back, you can pull over in the shade and park if you want. It's kinda hot."

"GREAT!" I'm thinking. "That cop was standing right there when someone probably just got out of a ticket by lying. He's going to see my spotless driving record, take in to account my being a stand-up guy and let me off with a warning. Whew! I'll never cut through this parking lot again. Man, I just learned MY lesson. You know, sometimes honesty pays off." I think I sprained my shoulder patting myself on the back.

The deputy returns to my vehicle.

"Sir, I need you to sign this form. Signing it is not an admission of guilt. There's a number on the back where you can call and get the amount for the fine. If you choose to contest the ticket, you have to appear in court on the date and time written on the front. You have a nice day and do me a favor, be real careful, okay?"

MORAL OF THE STORY: Don't be honest. Be a lying douchebag. Being honest costs you.

Costs you approximately $132.25.



 
It's Over
06.30.08 (4:41 pm)   [edit]
It's finally over. My son's first season as a little league baseball player. He’s never played ball before, so the mere fact that he got through an entire (11 game) season and wants to go back for more is saying something.

Having a child play organized sports can be a trying time for a dad, and I'm not talking about just fretting over possible injury. You hope your child will be handle adversity. You hope that the teammates with more experience don't look upon your child as a liability or tease him for not playing like Cal Ripken. You hope your child gets a coach that won't give up on him because he doesn't play like Cal Ripken. You hope against hope that your child doesn't get stuck in the "players who play like Cal Ripken if he were a paralyzed quadruple amputee with scoliosis" position...otherwise known as Right Field.

Li'l Heavyarms played right field.

Heavyarms is a far cry from an actual athlete, but keeping in mind the old adage "Those who can, do. Those who can't…COACH," I had plenty of baseball tidbits to offer him. Things like:
"Keep your head in there!"
"Open your stance up!"
"Ready position!"
"Keep the ball in front of you!"
"Get your glove up!"
"Keep your eye on the ball!"

Parents/pseudo-coaches don't realize that most of those phrases are about as meaningful to a 7-year old as dissertation on quantum mechanics, but we helpfully yell them at our children during a game anyway. I guess it’s sort of like asking someone "How're you doin'?" You don't really care, you just say it because everybody’s sayin' it.

Strangely, my son didn't pick up on Baseball Basics during his first game. He was still asking what a force out was after his second game. I was still constantly reminding him to back up throws to first after his third game.

ANECDOTE: My family and I attended a professional baseball game during the season, and without fail my wife would say "oh, oh, oh!" on every single throw to first base. After a while, she said, "Man, they never miss a throw to first do they?" "No," I replied, "Professional baseball isn't like little league. Not every throw to first base is an exciting play." Parents of little leaguers will know what I’m talking about.
My son's team finished in first place, going 10-0-1. Most of their games they won by comfortable margins, 25-9, 17-5, 20-4, 18-8. They had two close calls. The first came against the team my son's best friend played on. It was a see-saw affair, with our team coming out on top 21-19. This is a time of mixed emotions for a parent. On the one hand, you're happy for your child. On the other, you're sad for his friend and his parents. After the teams shook hands, my son and his best friend walked off the field together, obviously discussing the finer points of the game. They were headed right towards me, and I was wondering if I'd be able to commiserate with the lad with just the right amount of sympathy because (God forgive me) I was happy our team won. How upset was he going to be? Was he ever going to be able to speak to my son again after the sound thrashing he just experienced at the hands of an obviously superior team? Were they saying their final goodbyes, two longtime friends forced to part ways because of some trivial ball game? I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of remorse as the pair approached me.

"Dad, can he spend the night with us?" my son asked.

I guess baseball isn't as important to a 7-year old.

The second close call came against the team they were (at the time) tied with for first place. They were losing 11-3 with two outs at the bottom of the third inning when the game was called for weather. One more out and the game would have been official. When the game was rescheduled our team managed to score 13 runs while holding the opposition to only 4. My son was hitless in three at bats, and as we left the field he was sad. "What's wrong, you guys won?" "Yeah, but I didn't get a hit." "So? You would have gotten on base against any other team in the league (this was true, their third and first basemen were unbelievably good.) And what's more, even though you got thrown out, you drove home a run." "Yeah, that's true." "And you guys won by one run." "I guess so." "So you might even say that you drove in the winning run." "Hey, that's true! Can I have a milkshake?"

Showing that even an apparent failure can sometimes be viewed as beneficial makes things go down a little bit easier.

Especially when combined with a milkshake. 



 
Get to Know the Angry White Male
06.04.08 (2:19 pm)   [edit]
Okay,

So this is a spur of the moment kind of deal, but in the 5 or so months I have been (mostly) absent there have been a few people (more than I would have expected) who have actually written and asked how I was. Even more surprising is that they don't really know who I am, other than the drivel I've spewed forth here. So this is payback for them. Sweet, sweet payback.

And I totally stole this from AuntConi, who in turn stole it from the Dread PirateGal.

What is your full name?
Angry White Male. Heavyarms to you.

What are you most afraid of?
Spiders. Seriously.

What is the most recent movie that you have seen on bootleg?
E.T. when I was a kid. Some dude brought his JVC camera into the theater and filmed the whole thing.

Place of birth?
Alexandria. Virginia, Louisiana, or Egypt. Can't remember.

Favorite food is?
Pizza, or chinese. Also, true Barbecue,

What is your natural hair color?
Dirty Blonde

Ever been to Freak Nick?
Freak what?
Freak Nick.
What Nick?
FREAK NICK!
what what?

Ever been skinny-dipping?
Multiple times. Always alone.

Love someone so much they made you cry?
Do Transformers count? My wife, maybe. I try not to cry since guys like John Wayne and Conan don't.

Been in a car accident?
Three. One serious.

Croutons or bacon bits?
both.

Favorite day of the week would be?
The ones that aren't filled with suckage.

Favorite restaurant?
Several. None are national chains.

Favorite sport to watch?
REAL Football (i.e. American.) Hockey. Auto Racing (all kinds). Baseball if I'm actually at the ball park.

Favorite drink?
Coke. Sometimes with his good friend Jack. Also...beer.

Favorite ice cream?
It used to be Breyer's French Vanilla. (Remember milk, cream, sugar, eggs?) Now they put "tara gum" in it, whatever the hell that is. My favorite ice cream now is what I make at home.

Warner Brothers/Disney?
neither.

Ever been on a ship?
Never at sea. I have visited the USS Kidd, USS Alabama, USS Drum, USS Missouri, and, proudly, the USS Arizona memorial.

What color is your bedroom carpet?
An off-white berber affair that needs to be replaced.

How many times did you fail your driver's test?
Did not fail, but I missed the maximum number of questions you could miss and still pass. Kicked ass on the driving portion.

What do you do when you are bored?
I am never bored.

What time is bedtime?
I'd say between the hours of 10pm and 3am, though here lately midnight is pushing it.

Favorite TV shows?
Good Eats, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, Battlestar Galactica, South Park, Heroes, Lost, Deadliest Catch, anything on the History Channel about WWII, The X-Files, Futurama

Last person you went to dinner with?
My wife.

Park or Zoo?
My kids would prefer a zoo, so I gotta go with that.

What are your favorite colors?
Well, most of my t-shirts are black, so black I guess.

How many tattoos do you have?
Tattoos are retarded.

How many pets do you have?
One. Anybody want a yellow lab that sleeps, digs, and chews too much?

Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
My scientific mind says egg. My religious mind say chicken.
Actual answer: *shrug*

What do you want to do before you die?
Make sure my family doesn't need anything else from me.

Have you ever been to Hawaii?
Yup. Plan to return.

Have you been to countries outside the U.S.?
Nope



 
I Should Have Answered the Phone
04.10.08 (12:26 pm)   [edit]
It was a muggy Sunday afternoon. My head was pounding. I had spent the majority of the afternoon lying prone under the back end of a riding mower...couldn't get that fucking drive belt off. My head was throbbing.

I was dirty. My hands were covered with grease and dirt and all the other crap that gets churned up when you mow a Louisiana yard that is about 1 inch in elevation above the local wetlands. My head was aching.

I went inside for a sip of water. The car race was on, same old story; the same guys as always were up front, the same as always in the back. My head was pulsing. I wanted to take a nap, close my eyes and try to dull the vibrations caused by the little gremlin pounding away on my optic nerves with his little gremlin sledgehammer. I climbed into my recliner and put a pillow over my head to drown out the children, the car race, my wife, the damn birds outside.

The phone rang.

"It's your Grandaddy," my wife informed me, looking at the caller ID.

Great. I had just fallen asleep. The little gremlin was doing his best Barry Bonds impression now. A Barry Bonds that actually uses performance enhancing substances. I didn't want to talk to him. He was just going to talk about the same old stuff and everything. He was just going to tell me about his personal problems and everything. He was just going to tell me how he would like for me to drive the six hours to his house so he could see the kids and everything. Why did he have to end every sentence with "and everything," anyway?

"Don't answer it. I'll call him back tonight after we eat supper and get the kids in bed."

Only I didn't. I got busy cleaning up supper, or taking a shower, or ironing my clothes for work, or making Li'l Heavyarms' lunch for school, or playing Guitar Hero, or any of the inane shit that consumes my time between the hours of 5pm and bedtime.

"Dang it," I told my wife as we drifted off to sleep that night, "I forgot to call Grandaddy. You've got to remind me to call him tomorrow night."

Only she didn't. She got busy cleaning up supper, or taking a shower, or putting my daughter Apple to sleep, or grading papers, or making sure Heavyarms didn't forget any of the inane shit that consumes his time between the hours of 5pm and bedtime. By Monday night, it had slipped my mind along with the lawn mower and the car race and everything.

Tuesday my phone rang. It was my dad. "Son, I'm just calling to let you know that Grandaddy was in a car wreck. We don't know how bad he's hurt, but they're taking him to the hospital. I'm always giving my dad a hard time because we have conversations that go like this; him: "Did I tell you that Pop (his dad) was in the hospital last week?" me: "No, you never call to tell me any of that stuff." him: "Oh, well it wasn't a big deal. It was just...(some sort of everyday affliction old men seem to suffer from.)" I didn't think anything of it.

"Okay, well, call me and let me know how he is."

"I will as soon as we know something."

That night, I was in the middle of all the inane shit that consumes my time from the hours of 5pm until bedtime when my phone rang. It was my dad. I could hear someone hysterical in the background.

"Son, I'm just calling you to tell you that your Grandaddy didn't make it."

He said some other things about the wreck and the other car and jaws of life and ribs and heart stopping, but I just hung on those last four words "Grandaddy didn't make it." I closed my eyes and could actually see those words burned into the black field behind my eyelids. I marveled at all the euphemisms we use for when the life energy in a person is exhausted and nothing but an empty husk is left. "Passed away," "Dearly departed," "called home."

"Didn't make it."

Suddenly, my Grandaddy wasn't that annoying old man that tried to call me Sunday. He was the man that used to tell me the story of the Three Little Pigs before I went to bed. He was the man that took me camping at Albert's Pike where I met my first TRUE girlfriend (it lasted 1 week.) The man that would let me stay up late and watch rasslin' with him. The man who always smelled like hickory smoke during Thanksgiving. The man that always carried around a milk jug full of the sweetest tasting well water in Arkansas. The man that gave nicknames to all the boys he loved; Scamp, Bearcat, mine was Heavy Metal ("Heavy" for short.) The man that gave me my first shotgun. The man that was there when I killed my first squirrel. The man that taught me how to skin squirrels that had suddenly been "called home."

The man who loved his children and his grandchildren and wouldn't have hesitated to do anything for ANY of them.

We buried him last Friday. It was cold, raining, the graveyard was muddy. I was a pallbearer, one of the only ways I can really think to honor the empty husk that used to be my grandaddy. A former Staff Sergeant in the Air Force, he had an Air Force honor guard; a bugle player who played taps for him and a pair of sharp looking airmen who removed his flag and presented it to his only daughter, my mom. I held together pretty well until then.

Once the ceremony was over, we gathered in clumps and talked about him. Hugged. Even managed a laugh or two;
"Remember that time when we went hunting and we lost Sugar (his dog) and he was hollerin' through the woods 'Sugah. Sugah! That damn dog is deaf. Sugah! Gee-on back hyeah!'" (which is how some folks tell their dogs to "Git on back here!")
"Remember how he used to let out a satisfied "ahhhhhh" after taking a big ol' gulp of sweet tea?"

"As soon as we can." That was always my response when he asked me when I could bring the kids up and visit him. "As soon as we can." People always think they can put off stuff they really ought to do by saying "as soon as we can," and that makes everything peachy. It doesn't.

I could have had one more conversation with him. Could have had one more phone call that began simply "Hey, Heavy!" Looking back, we could have talked about how great Barak Obama is and how he couldn't have waited to vote for him, (which wouldn't have happened in a septillion years) for all I cared. I could have, but I didn't.

I should have answered the phone.

 
Bye
01.02.08 (8:09 am)   [edit]
Goodbye, cruel world,
I'm leavin' you today.
Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye.

Goodbye, all you people,
there's nothin' you can say
to make me change my mind.
Goodbye


 
The Death Star Galaxy
12.18.07 (9:27 am)   [edit]
Wow! Simply astounding.

Astronomy has come a long way in 20 years. Just 25 years ago we were finally finding tiny little moons in orbit around our solar system neighbors. Now, because of super-advanced, bad-assed, hyper-awesome astronomical devices, we can actually view things going on millions of light years away in other galaxies. (Well, technically things that were going on millions years ago in another galaxy).

In this instance, a system of galaxies called 3C321, the larger galaxy is bombarding a smaller companion galaxy with cosmic radiation. It is a widely accepted theory that most, if not all, galaxies contain a Supermassive Black Hole at their galactic core. Just as the Moon orbits Earth and Earth orbits the Sun, it is speculated that all stars withing a given galaxy must also orbit something. Since we cannot directly view the center of our galaxy (there are lots of stars, dust, and other particulate matter obscuring the view), we must observe it through X-Ray detection and by other means. Something is definitely there.

Just like stars, black holes and supermassive black holes emit energy in the form of cosmic radiation, X-Rays, gamma rays, and the like. The dose of radiation is so massive that, where it to reach Earth it would be lethal on a planetary scale, even millions of light years away. Fortunately for us, because of their physical make-up and the gravitational distortions involved, black holes only emit their energy from their poles, so this energy is directed away from the object in a relatively focused beam rather than in all directions like a normal star.

Here, the radiation from the larger galaxy is blasting directly into a smaller galaxy about 20,000 light years distant (about the distance of the Earth to the Milky Way's galactic core). The radiation is expected to not only destroy the stars, but the massive dose of energy could quite possibly provide the necessary energy for new stars and planets to form.

Because of human advances in astronomy, we are going to be seeing a lot more astronomical phenomena just like this. Who knows, we may even be looking down the barrel of a supermassive black hole pointed right at Earth!

Merry Christmas!!!

 
Dogs > People
12.11.07 (11:47 am)   [edit]
NOTE: I originally titled this post "Of Shootings and Other Things," where I was going to talk about the recent mall/church shootings, but I went off on this Michael Vick riff and it ended up being longer than I thought. Sorry to those who clicked on this title and it was misleading. I will post my thoughts on the shootings soon.

Shawne Merriman, Linebacker, San Diego Chargers: tested positive for anabolic steroids in 2006.
Punishment: Suspended for four games of the 2006 season. Also won The Associated Press Defensive Rookie of the Year Award and was selected to the Pro Bowl to represent the AFC.

Ricky Williams, Running Back, Miami Dolphins: violated the NFL's substance abuse policies FOUR times.
Punishment: suspended for four games after the second violation, suspended for the 2006 season after the fourth violation, played in the Canadian Football League during his suspension, NFL eligibility reinstated Oct. 2007. Terry "Tank" Johnson, Defensive Tackle, Dallas Cowboys: In February '06, arrested and charged with aggravated assault and resisting arrest while on probation. In Dec. '06, charged with violation of probation and possession of unlicensed firearms.
Punishment: Received two sentences; 120 days on one charge, 45 days on a separate charge. Allowed to serve the sentences concurrently, spent 120 days in jail. Released by the Chicago Bears. Suspended by the NFL for 8 games. Signed by the Dallas Cowboys. Reinstated Nov. 11, 2007 and currently playing football.

Chris Henry, Wide Receiver, Cincinnati Bengals: Arrested Dec. '05 for possession of marijuana, driving without a license, and driving without auto insurance after being pulled over for speeding. Arrested Jan. '06 for concealment and aggravated assault with a firearm. Violated NFL policies regarding personal conduct and substance abuse policies in Oct. '06. Jan. '07, pleaded guilty to charges of providing alcohol to minors stemming from an incident in the spring of '06.
Punishment: Suspended by the NFL for 2 games because of the Oct. '06 violations. Sentenced to 90 days in jail because of the Jan. '07 guilty plea. Only served 2 days, the remaining 88 days suspended. Suspended by the NFL for 8 games in '07 for violating the league's personal conduct policy. Reinstated by the NFL on Nov. 5, 2007. Allegedly assaulted a parking attendant on Nov. 6, 2007 (currently under investigation.

Michael Vick, Quarterback, Atlanta Falcons: Principle financier of a dog-fighting operation based in Newport News, VA. Plead guilty to "Conspiracy to Travel in Interstate Commerce in Aid of Unlawful Activities and to Sponsor a Dog in an Animal Fighting Venture." Prior to this, Vick had a clean criminal record. Punishment: Sentenced to 23 months in federal prison. By law, will be required to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence. Still faces state charges and, if found guilty, could have his sentence tacked on to the time he serves in federal prison. Suspended by the NFL indefinitely. Because of his sentence, will miss at least two NFL seasons, and possibly a third.

Can someone please explain the reason behind this disproportionate treatment of Michael Vick by our justice system and the NFL? Just what kind of message are they trying to put out there? That it is worse to mistreat dogs than people? This is really fucked up.

And, of course, I would like to point out that we're talking about Pit Bulls, here. If Michael Vick and his buddies hadn't "mistreated" these dogs, they'd probably all be out there biting the faces off small children.

 
Boneless Spiral Ham...
12.10.07 (9:43 am)   [edit]
...Delicious for Chanukah!

No, I'm not kidding. (Scroll down to the "Catchy Caption of the Day.")

That's pretty damn funny, right there.

UPDATE: Fixed that link! (Thanks Pastor Dave)

 
Heavyarmses Christmas Morning Casserole
12.04.07 (9:17 am)   [edit]
This is completely off the wall, but between writing about politics and other shit I'm all worded out, I guess. So, here is my very own special recipe for the breakfast casserole I fix every year on Christmas morning. Since there's only four of us, I usually half this recipe and cook it in a loaf pan. Not for vegetarians, vegans, people who are concerned about their health, or other pussies.
You will need:

6 eggs
4 slices bread (I prefer whole wheat)
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded (shred your own, don't use that bagged pre-shredded crap)
1 lb. ground sausage (I prefer organic when I can find it. No reason you have to ingest preservatives, additives and all that other shit to enjoy sausage)
2 cups milk

1 tsp ground dry mustard. And for pete's sake, use whole mustard seeds and grind your own*. That pre-ground junk has absolutely no flavor. You can reduce this amount or omit it if your sinuses aren't up to it, though.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Brown the sausage and drain thoroughly (I put mine out on a paper towel after draining). Cut the bread slices into 1 to 1/2 inch cubes and layer evenly in the bottom of a 2 qt. casserole. Layer the sausage evenly on top of the bread. Ditto for the cheese. Beat the eggs, milk, and mustard together and pour over into the casserole, making sure it is evenly distributed throughout. Bake for 45 minutes or until the egg has set in the middle. Let rest for 15-30 minutes before consuming.

Now that seems like a lot of preparation for a Christmas morning meal when the kids are opening presents, but here's the thing: you can make the casserole the night before. When you wake up in the morning, all you gotta do is preheat the oven and pop it in, (obviously, you want to let the casserole come up to room temperature, or at least not take it out of the fridge and put it straight in the oven or your casserole could break.) Open the presents as breakfast cooks, and enjoy a hot breakfast when you're done. Goes best with a hot cup of coffee and a couple dashes of Tabasco. On the casserole, not in the coffee.

The OTHER good thing about this is that it is modular. You can double it, half it, one-and-a-half-times-it; depending on how many people you need to feed. You can add some herbs and make it savory, or you can do like I do and use honey wheat bread and maple sausage which will make it slightly sweet. Add some green onions and hot sauce to the eggs for a little extra color and zip. Rule of thumb is, if you would eat it in an omelet you can probably add it to this.

 
What absolute [censored] [censored]!
11.29.07 (9:21 am)   [edit]
The actual title for this post is "What absolute fucking bullshit," but I knew that wouldn't pass muster.

Last night during the Republican presidential debate aired on CNN, one Mr. Keith Kerr challenged the candidates on the US military's policy of excluding homosexuals from service.

Kerr, a homosexual, is retired United States Army Colonel, as well as a retired Brigadier General in the California National Guard.

He's also a fucking Hillary Clinton campaign hack. He was appointed last summer to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transexual Americans For Hillary Steering Committee.

Kerr, naturally, denies that the question was set up in advance or that the Clinton campaign was in any way attached to his question.

CNN (which preselected all the questioners), naturally, denies that they had any knowledge that Kerr was associated with the Clinton campaign. CNN says they verified his military background and that he did not contribute to any presidential campaign's.

Bullshit. Bull-fucking-shit.

Let's check the track record.

CNN spent most of the Democrat presidential debate lobbing softballs at the esteemed Senator from New York. CNN is also widely known as the "Clinton News Network" because damn if they don't have a chubby for the Clintons.

The esteemed Senator from New York has a history of planting audience questions.

CNN supposedly chose this guy's question "at random."

I'm calling shenanigans on this one.

I hope you're all are fucking paying attention, because she's going to be our next president.

And, for what feels like the millionth time, I ask you, "what if?" What if, say, during the Democrat debate on FOX News, a woman had asked the esteemed Senator from New York if she was only continuing her marriage to William Jefferson Clinton because of her quest for power? What if it turned out that this woman was a member of, say, Toothless Gun-toting Rednecks to Elect Fred Thompson? What if FOX News said they had selected the questioner "completely at random."

Would you be able to hear yourself think over the hemming and hawing and weeping and gnashing of teeth coming out of your idiot box during the evening news?

 
S-C-R-A-B-B-L-E
11.28.07 (8:31 pm)   [edit]
NOTE: Everywhere you see &trade, it should be showing the little TM symbol. This works in some browsers and not in others. I'm too inept to know how to fix this, and I'm too lazy to go look it up.

Note:Once again, tblog censored the title of one of my posts. It was "S" is for "Suck". Why is it I can put something like shit-eating donkeyball licker IN a post, but can't put "suck" or "gay" in the title?

I played Scrabble this week for the first time in years. I remember now why I hated playing Scrabble in the first place.

Here's the setting. There were four of us playing, my wife, her sister, HER husband, and me. We had already played two games and were at the very end of what was our last game. There were no more tiles to be drawn and each of us were trying to use the last of what we held. There wasn't much of a chance of someone dropping "Birsled" or "Euripi" on the board, we were trying to find room for a single "V" or an "A" and "I." "Van," "Ail," was the limit to what we'd be able to get.

My problem with playing Scrabble with my in-laws is that you must use The Book&trade . If the word you use is not in The Book&trade, it doesn't count, and I've gotten burned by this before. So I usually stick to words that are indisputable, like "stick" and "words." I played "Radomes" earlier and had to wait a tense 2 minutes as the word was challenged (and subsequently upheld.)

During one of the earlier rounds, I had a G, L, U, and N, and an open O to play on. I debated playing the word "Gluon," but, knowing that gluons were not discovered until the late 1970's and not knowing how old this edition of Scrabble was we were playing, I decided against it. You see, for my in-laws, just proving that a word exists is not sufficient. As I said earlier, if a word is not in The Book&trade, it is not technically a word for the game in which we are playing. Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary; 11th Edition simply won't do.

So, as our last game was in its final throes, I decided to look at The Book&trade and see if "gluon" was in there. My mother-in-law, Scrabble Master and Word Wizard Supreme, eyes wide, asks "WHAT ARE YOU DOING???!!" "Looking up a word," I reply. She's aghast, "YOU CAN'T DO THAT!!!" She goes on to explain that you are not allowed to look in The Book&trade except on challenges. Having been briefed on The Rules&trade prior to the game, I explain that the round is effectively over, that we would not be playing anymore and I was just checking to see if a word I wanted to play in a previous round would have been valid. "YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO DO THAT! IT'S IN THE RULES&trade!!!! If you look in The Book&trade, there's a chance you'll see a word you can play with what you have."

I asked "What difference does it make? The game is over, I'm not going to be able to play this word, I am just looking to see if it's in there for next time." At this point, I was remembering how just 20 minutes earlier my mother-in-law had helpfully told my wife that "Xi" is a word in order for her to play an "X" tile (and also take the lead over yours truly). When asked what it meant, she said "I don't know. Me and momma (my wife's grandmother, a wise woman in her own right) used to study that book so we would always be able to play something with what we had."

"How did you learn that ecks-eye ("Xi," since no one knew how to pronounce it, just that it was in The Book&trade and, thus, was an official Word&trade) was a word?"

"I told you, I used to look at the book in my spare time."

"I don't understand the difference. Why can you look in the book in your spare time to learn words to play, but I can't look in the book for this one word and see if I could (emphasis on past tense) have played it."

"You're just not supposed to, it's in The Rules&trade ."

"So, what you're telling me is that I can't look in The Book&trade right now, but if I were to wait the 3 minutes its going to take for this game to be over and THEN look, I would be within my rights?"

She brightened at that, as if her petulant child (which I admit, I am of hers sometimes) had finally caught on to some basic parenting tenet, "EXACTLY!"

"That's stupid."

"Heavyarms, that's The Rules&trade ."

"Well, I have a problem with The Rules&trade . The Rules&trade allow you to play words that you don't even know the meaning of. (Along with the aforementioned "Xi," "Ab" and "Ya" were also played, challenged (by me) and upheld. The words were played, not because the player knew what they meant but simply because the player knew they were in The Book&trade . You should have to know what a word means before you can play it, and any definable word should be allowed."

"Those aren't The Rules&trade ."

"The Rules&trade are not logical."

I guess that's my main problem with Scrabble. It doesn't reward players for their knowledge and vocabulary so much as it rewards you for memorizing The Book&trade . My memory sucks.

 
A Charlie Brown Christmas
11.27.07 (9:03 am)   [edit]
A Charlie Brown Christmas will air tonight at 7pm Central. You know, for those of you that go for that sort of thing.

Did You Know?
...That the version of A Charlie Brown Christmas, the version you've watched annually for 5, 10, 20 years and have memorized and know by heart is NOT the complete version of the special?

The original 1965 cut of the special had numerous "product placements" (signs, etc.) for Coca-Cola. Coca-Cola signed on as the special's sponsor and remained so for three years. In 1968, Coke ceased being the primary sponsor and all references to the company were removed. Some cuts included:

- In the opening credits after Snoopy spins Charlie Brown and Linus around with Linus' blanket, Linus crashed into a wooden fence with a Coca Cola sign. This scene was edited so that you can't tell where Linus lands.

- In the scene where the characters are throwing snowballs at cans on the fence, Linus knocks down a Coke can. This scene has been edited so that Linus knocks down a generic can.

- The original ending had the message "Merry Christmas from the people in your town who bottle Coca-Cola" along with a voiceover that gave a similar message. This is why "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" sung by the characters ends in a sort of funny place.

 
Heavyarms' Random Thanksgiving Thoughts
11.20.07 (8:53 am)   [edit]
- Is there anything better on Thanksgiving than sweet potato casserole with that crunchy pecan caramel glaze on top?

- Well, besides a fried turkey, I mean? Seriously, if you've never had one of these, give it a try. Unless you live north of the Mason-Dixon. I don't know if yankees can fry a turkey. I asked my in-laws (with whom where spending Thangsgiving) if they were going to fry one this year (because I always do when we have Thanksgiving at my house or at my parents' house). My mother-in-law's eyes dropped, she sighed and said "No, where just going to bake one this year..." I pouted long enough that they offered to buy the oil and get out their fryer if I promised to do the labor.

- Does anyone still participate in the mass hysteria shopping binge on Friday after Thanksgiving? I went one time when I first got married. I don't even leave the house on Friday after Thanksgiving anymore.

- One of my best memories of Thanksgiving is waking up that morning before the sun came up to go squirrel hunting with my Grandaddy. We'd plan it so that we'd be in the woods right as the sun started to break through the forest canopy and Rocky and all his little buddies were rummaging around for acorns (unaware that the God of Death was about to place his icy hand on their shoulder...mwah hah hah haaaah!)

- Do squirrels even have shoulders? I miss going hunting with my Grandaddy. I'll have to remember to call him.

- I also miss the annual football game my brother and I played in our backyard after Thanksgiving dinner. I don't remember all the rules for 1-man football, but our yard was about 10 yards wide so it made for some pretty high scoring affairs.

- Go Lions!

- Go whoever's playing the Cowboys!

- I always try to limit my intake at the Thanksgiving meal to two plates worth of food, but it doesn't count if I take it off my wife's or my kids' plate.

- Okay, the ABSOLUTE best thing about Thanksgiving...better than fried turkey...better than sweet potatoes...better than the best dressing you ever had...is the Thanksgiving sandwich. Once the kids are in bed, once all the beer has been consumed, once all the food has been packed away in the fridge, once the football games are over, I sit down and fix a late night snack. I take two slices of bread and toast them. I pop a spoonful of sweet potatoes, a spoonful of dressing, and a couple slices of turkey in the microwave until they're nice and hot. Spread the dressing on one slice of bread, the sweet potatoes on the other slice, put the turkey in the middle with a few dollops of cranberry sauce (the real thing, not that canned purple jello crap) and enjoy!

- Happy Thanksgiving!

 
This Old House
11.14.07 (3:07 pm)   [edit]
I was goofing off at work today, playing with Google Maps when it suddenly occurred to me that I had never looked up the house I grew up in. My house was about 5 miles west of Alexandria, Louisiana, one of the state's major metropolitan centers.

Okay, not really. Alexandria is situated right in the middle of the state and is situated in a perfect location to be the center of trade, communication, and infrastructre of the state. But it isn't. Because they have had idiots running the show for decades. When I was a kid, the mayor tried to find a use for the city's swimming pools while they were closed during the off season, so he stocked them with catfish. Only someone didn't tell him that fish don't take to chlorinated water all that well. I digress.
Here's the old house (HINT: click on the street address in the map below. For some reason the arrow on this map is not pointing to the right area. The map that opens up will be correct.)


View Larger Map

It's the one with the brown roof in the center. The yard's boundaries are roughly defined by the roads on the northeast and east sides, to the southwest by a line that starts near the large solitary tree to the south and runs parallel to the NE road, and a line that would continue to the SW where the two roads to the NNE intersect. It was about an acre to give you an sense of scale.

The large tree to the south and the two trees between the house and the road that runs NW/SE are large pecan trees. The two side by side are about 50 feet tall and the one to the south is a real monster, 80-100 feet. All the rest of the trees around the house are trees my dad planted and were only 5-6 foot saplings when we moved out.

My brother and I used to play in the fields to the south and south east. They were always planted with cotton, or corn, or sugarcane. When they were planted with cotton, we'd grab our plastic rifles and hide in the cotton rows, pretending the cotton combines picking cotton were enemy tanks or giant imperial walkers. My dad would go out sometimes and cut off a piece of sugarcane and let us chew it. When the fields were fallow, the grass would grow up over your shoulders. We'd go out and mash the grass down and make rooms and hallways and pretend it was a fort.

The building with a red roof directly to the east is a barn. I used to stand on top of our picnic table, which was under the big pecan tree, and shoot the roof of the barn with a bb gun. It was cool to take a shot and count "one-thousand-one, one-thousand-two, one-thouasnd-three" before you heard the "WHOCK" the bb made against the barn's tin roof. In the winter, the trees thinned enough that I could see the bayou (which curves in in the bottom right corner and curves out in the upper right) and could sploosh shots into it.

The road that runs off the main road to the NE is where I learned to drive. The houses in the area didn't have trash collection, we used to have to take our trash to a dumpster, about a quarter-mile up this road (which was dirt at the time.) When I was 12 or 13, my dad started letting me put the garbage bags in the trunk of his car and drive it down to the dumpster.

If you follow the main road southeast to where it both the road and the bayou make a bend and run directly east...right there between the road in the bayou, back up in the trees is where I smoked my first cigarette. Thankfully, it was also my last cigarette.

Zoom the map out about 2 or 3 clicks. If you follow the bayou north to where it makes a bend to the west, and draw a line directly north from the house until it crosses the bayou, you can see a little grass airstrip. There used to be some crop dusters stationed here. We'd hear them flying around outside and we'd go out and wave and they'd waggle their wings back.

When I was in 6th grade, I got punished for talking in class. For that, I had to "write pages" (which basically consisted of hand-copying some book until I filled up 12 pages of paper, single-spaced, no margins, front-and-back.) I didn't do my pages so I got suspended from school for a day. When I got home from school, I left my suspension notice on the kitchen counter for my parents to find, grabbed my tent and sleeping bag and ran away from home. If you follow the dirt road to the east of the house directly south until it comes to a creek, you'll see a building with a reddish roof on the south side of the creek. Follow that creek east until it runs into some trees. That's where I ran away to. My dad found me about three hours later.

Wasn't a bad little place to live.

 
The Woman Who Would be President
11.13.07 (10:05 am)   [edit]
A set up.

At a campaign stop in Iowa last Tuesday, one Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton-Rodham was visiting a biodiesel plant. Naturally, there were more reporters than actual Iowa voters in attendance, and there were reporters from CNN, the AP, NY Times, LA Times, and others.

During a Q&A session, Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff, a student at Grinnell College, asked Senator Clinton what she would do to stop the effects of global warming (I guess she's fucking Super Woman?)

Well, as it turns out, Clinton's campaign actually PLANTED this questioner and her "spontaneous question." Ms. Gallo-Chasanoff came forward and admitted as much.

This act in and of itself doesn't bother me. I'm sure campaigns have planted questions in the "audience" at their campaign stops all the time. But there are two things about this that DO bother me:

1) This happened a week ago. It wasn't "widely" reported until this weekend. And by "widely," I mean, "reported by FOX News and the blogging community" mainly. But there was virtually no attention paid to this nationally. There was no outcry at all. Imagine, just imagine, if this had been done by Fred Thompson, or America's Mayor, or even those guys at the bottom of the "Insert Republican Here for President" tier. It would have been worse than the Jena Six. It would have been Nixon all over again. Corngate!! But no, it was the Woman Who Will Be President, and thus the free pass was granted.

2) When asked if the question was planted, the Clinton campaign replied in typical Clinton-ese (or Clintonspeak, if you prefer) "It is not a practice of our campaign to ask people to ask specific questions." Notice, if you will, that the Clinton campaign did not DENY this specific incident, just that it is "not a practice of their campaign." If When this woman becomes president, you can expect a lot more of this. And no one will call her on it, either.

 
The Cruelty of Children
11.12.07 (2:58 pm)   [edit]
Yesterday, I was outside changing the brake pads on my car and listening to the Saints game over the radio. Lil' Heavyarms, my 7-year old son, was in the backyard playing with his dog, Tater Tot. I looked over my shoulder to make sure he wasn't out by the pond and I saw him standing at the fence, looking into my neighbor's yard. My neighbor's son-in-law and grandkids were tossing a football around.

A few minutes later, LH asks, "Dad, can I go over to Mr. James' yard?" "Did they invite you over?" "No sir, I just wanted to see if I could go play with their kids."

My neighbors have always been friendly with us. They brought us a gift when my daughter was born. They always set aside some extra candy for the kids at Halloween. We let each other know if we're going out of town for a while and keep an eye on each other's house. "Make sure its alright with Mr. James before you play." "Yes, sir!" he said an trotted off, happily.

I finished up with the brake pads and went inside to wash the brake dust and brake cleaner and brake lube off my hands. It had started to sprinkle outside so I went back out make sure LH wasn't in the neighbor's house. It's one thing to go next door and play with the kids in the yard, quite another to go inside someone's house uninvited. He wasn't in the yard, so I started over to the neighbor's house to tell him to get his butt back outside. However, as I rounded the corner of my house, I saw him standing under one of our trees, looking at the neighbor's house. I said "Whatcha doin,' bud?" and noticed, as he turned around, that he was crying. We met half way and I asked "What's wrong?"

He wouldn't look at me, instead he looked at the ground. He let go in that way that kids will when they're trying to hold it in but can't once they're around someone they feel comfortable with. He still wouldn't answer. I repeated, "What is wrong." Immediately, my mind raced through the possibilities; he got in trouble, he broke something and was told to leave, he did something he wasn't supposed to do, the neighbor's kids were leaving and he was upset he had to come home. Still no answer. He just stood there staring at the ground, fists clenched, crying. The sprinkle was turning to drizzle.

"Son, you need to tell me what's wrong." I stressed the syllable "need" in that "if you're hurt, I've got to know/if you did something wrong, you better tell me right fucking now" way that most father's have picked up over years of trial and error. I'm on the verge of impatience. This is when he picked his eyes up and looked at me. Choking back tears, "Those kids told me I stink!"

Here's where the difficult part of fatherhood comes in. My immediate gut reaction was to tell him "Son, it doesn't matter what those little fuckers say. The worth of their opinion is just a little shy of being exactly jack-shit." Nah, that was no good. Then that smart-ass little devil on my shoulder must have been whispering in my ear, because I thought to tell him, that next time just sa, "Yeah, I probably do. I'll need to take a bath later. Hey! It's too bad you can't take a bath for being a dickhead. You'll never be able to wash that off, I guess." That wouldn't work either. Then I thought about taking the psychiatrist approach; "Son, the only reason that kid said that was because he doesn't feel like he is important and feels the need to tear down everyone he perceives as being a little better than him, just so he can feel better." But, hell, the last thing you want to hear when you're mad is fucking logic.

So, I held my tongue, tempered my reaction, and dispensed what is probably the oldest piece of advise a father can ever give out to his son..."It doesn't matter what they say. If they're going to treat you like that, you don't need to waste your time with them."

But just let that little cocksucker accidentally toss a ball over the fence into my yard...

UPDATE: Sitting down to supper last night, I asked Lil' Heavyarms the specifics of what happened to him on Sunday. Turns out, the kids were telling him that he stunk at dodgeball. DAMN! I told him that the next time some kids in the neighborhood are giving him a hard time about his dodgeball skills, just bring them on over to the house and they can play against him and me. I got picked on in school a lot so one of the skills I perfected was a laser-guided throwing arm when it came to dodgeball. There was nothing more satisfying than the sound those red kickball's made when I was bouncing them off the head of some dick that was flicking my ear on the bus the day before.

Or we could have played them in football. Put a NERF ball in his hand, limit your routes to about 10 yards and the kid looks like John Elway.

 
What My Son Thinks of Me
11.07.07 (11:56 am)   [edit]
I'm sitting down to a family dinner with my wife and kids Sunday. The topic of conversation is the upcoming baby shower for my sister-in-law's (wife's sister) sister-in-law (my sister-in-law's husband's sister) that will be going down this weekend. My wife volunteered to help do the baby shower, and so will be heading out of town with our daughter.

Heavyarms don't do baby showers and so we left it up to our son to decide if he wants go out of town with mom or stay home with dad. We gave him the choice about a week ago and at dinner Sunday, posed the question again. He thought for a moment and asked, "If I stay home with dad, could I play video games?" "Well, you've gotten up on time and gotten dressed and done your homework for two weeks without any problems. Yeah, you can play video games."

My wife, who for some strange reason, believes it is not good to play video games for more than about 30 minutes at a time, quickly jumped in, "But you can't play video games ALL weekend, son. You'd have to stop playing for a little while and do other things."

He looked at her and, without pausing, replied "I know that MOM. I'd have to stop so I can eat and go to the bathroom and go to sleep!" (DUH! - H)

*sigh*

He's WAY too much like his old man, sometimes.

 
11.02.07 (10:01 am)   [edit]
Last night, while my wife and I were watching the news, they teased an upcoming story "The man who was responsible for the death of 80,000 people died today, we'll tell you who, coming up." My wife's ears immediately perked up. "What!?" Having already heard the story earlier, "They're talking about Paul Tibbets, he died today." "How terrible, that he had to live with that," she said, referring to the fact that Paul Tibbets commanded the plane that dropped the first (and, fortunately, next to last) atomic bomb to be used in warfare. "I don't think he had any regrets."

Lt. Col. Paul Tibbets has commanded and led bombing groups in the European and later Mediterranean theaters, earning his stripes in the B-17 Flying Fortress. In late 1944, he had just returned from a training flight in a brand new B-29 Superfortress bomber. He was met on the ramp and told to grab his clothes and his bags, he was going to Colorado Springs, CO. Once there, he told "we got a little thing going on called the Manhattan Project, and we're told you're the man we need."

The mission was outlined for him, dropping atomic weapons simultaneously in the European and Pacific theaters. The B-29 was the only aircraft suitable for the job, and Lt. Col. Tibbets was going to be able to hand-select the aircraft and crews he needed. He was told "There's nobody could tell you what you have to do because nobody knows." Essentially, Paul Tibbets was going to have to figure out the logistics behind dropping an atomic bomb.

Of the terrible weapon he was going to be using, he was only told that the bomb would explode with the force of 20,000 tons of TNT. To that end, "I'd never seen 1 lb. of TNT blow up. I'd never heard of anybody who'd seen 100 lbs. of TNT blow up. All I felt was that this was gonna be one hell of a big bang."

And Tibbets, being the extraordinary man he was, assembled the necessary components for his mission. And he carried his mission out perfectly. A lot of people would assume that Tibbets would feel terribly guilty. That he might have the death of 140,000 people weighing on his conscience every day. Not so.

"Second thoughts? No...Number one, I got into the air corps to defend the United States to the best of my ability. That's what I believe in and that's what I work for. Number two, I'd had so much experience with airplanes... I'd had jobs where there was no particular direction about how you do it and then of course I put this thing together with my own thoughts on how it should be because when I got the directive I was to be self-supporting at all times.

On the way to the target I was thinking: I can't think of any mistakes I've made. Maybe I did make a mistake: maybe I was too damned assured. At 29 years of age I was so shot in the ass with confidence I didn't think there was anything I couldn't do. Of course, that applied to airplanes and people. So, no, I had no problem with it. I knew we did the right thing because when I knew we'd be doing that I thought, yes, we're going to kill a lot of people, but by God we're going to save a lot of lives. We won't have to invade [Japan]."

In the end, I think that Paul Tibbets did not have any regrets over what he did, nor should he, I believe. Yes, 140,000 people died on the morning of August 6, 1945, most of them unfortunately innocent civilians. But, as Gen. Tibbets said later in life, he SAVED a lot of lives. Those 140,000 people died, (and 80,000 more in Nagasaki) so that hundreds of thousands, perhaps a million United States Marines, sailors, soldiers, airmen, Japanese civilians and soldiers, could be spared. "He said he wasn't proud of all the death and destruction at Hiroshima, but he was proud that he did his job well."

In the end, General Tibbets didn't want to be buried. He didn't want a physical location...a tombstone or grave, some place that could be easily designated as a gathering site for for anti-whatever demonstrators. Instead, he wished to be cremated and his ashes spread over the English channel. One last time to the body of water that so many Army Air Corps crewmen crossed on their way to war, never to return.

 
Heavyarms' Essential Halloween Viewing List
10.31.07 (8:27 am)   [edit]
I dig Halloween. It's probably my favorite non-religious holiday and probably the only holiday that I find myself anticipating weeks in advance. I even look forward to putting out my Jack-O'-Lanterns. (I usually dread having to put out Christmas lights.) I think one of the reasons I like Halloween so much is that it lets me know that fall has finally arrived. Fall is my favorite time of year. The weather is cooling, we spend more time outside, all the greens are turning to yellows and browns and oranges, it is the prime of football season...

Anyway, here's a list of things I like to watch around Halloween time to get me in the mood.

It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown - Peanuts has always been one of my favorite comic strips (along with The Far Side, and Calvin and Hobbes). I'd say that this Halloween special is a great metaphor for steadfast belief in something even when it alienates you from the rest of your peers, but truth be told, the thing I like the most about this show is "I got a rock." I've always sort of identified with Charlie Brown, and getting a rock just sort of encapsulates that. Just like A Charlie Brown Christmas, I try to see this one every year.

Treehouse of Horror - While it may be true that The Simpsons have become stale in recent years (I wouldn't know, Mrs. Heavyarms won't let me watch it when the kids are awake), I have always enjoyed their annual Halloween specials. These little mini-trilogies are always good fun. Its frustrating that FOX's Major League Baseball contract usually means that Treehouse of Horror is shown AFTER Halloween, but the Simpsons are so easily found in syndication you can usually find one or two episodes to watch before Halloween.

Korn's Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery - For its first three seasons, South Park had a Halloween episode, Pinkeye, Spookyfish, and this one. KGPGM is a spoof on Scooby Doo, and probably one of the best SP episodes. From Cartman's mom's Antonia Banderas blow-up doll (which Carman thinks is a Christmas present for him), Kyle's dead grandmother being dug up and eaten by a stray dog (some grave watchers report the missing body to Kyle's mother and they graphically explain that she was probably stolen by a necrophiliac), a guest appearance by the band Korn (as a cheery mystery-solving team, "Form of...KORN!"), to Kenny's shitty ED-209 costume, this is a great Halloween episode.

Godzilla - Always leave room for a good monster movie, and this is the best one ever. Not that crappy Raymond Burr version, but the original version. I finally had a chance to watch this version a year or so ago...speechless. The ONLY monster movie where the monster is omnipresent, inexorable, inescapable.

Alien - This movie scared the shit out of me when I was 10 when I was at home, bored, and digging through all the rated R movies my dad said I couldn't watch. I spent the rest of the day with every light in the fucking house on. I started sleeping with the covers over my head, a habit I didn't break until...well, last year, I think. I've seen it 100 times, and it still scares the shit out of me. I know what's going to happen, I know WHEN its going to happen and it scares the shit out of me.

So there ya go. What gets ol' Heavyarms in the (Halloween) mood.

Happy Halloween!

 

WARNING!!

May contain prejudiced, offensive, right-wing, sexist, homophobic, redneck, or other generally offensive language. Not suitable for children under the age of 3. If you are easily offended, like to point out grammatical or spelling errors, or are just generally disagreeable, go away.

LINKS


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