Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Dangerous Tomorrows - Part Two: Obamacare

While I was on vacation last week, the Supreme Court handed down a couple of decisions of some significance. One of those came down on Thursday (06/25/2015) and impacted the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare.  

I am not going to try to unravel of the complexities of the case that came before the Supreme Court. As I understand it in its most basic terms, if the court's decision had come down in the other direction, a central component of Obamacare would've been struck down and millions of people who had secured health insurance coverage through this program would've found that coverage in serious danger. And the reversal of this program would have added a significant burden to the federal budget deficit. 

Instead, in a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court upheld Obamacare, cutting off the most serious challenge yet to this health care program since its inception.  

As I noted with yesterday's post, I'm titling these entries "Dangerous Tomorrows" because I'm addressing events that are dangerous to those who seek to preserve the status quo and halt any forward motion towards a different way of doing things in the future. The Supreme Court's decision to preserve Obamacare makes tomorrow dangerous for such people. 

I am nowhere near expert enough to debate the merits or shortcomings of the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, if you will. I can only imagine that any large and sweeping federal program made in cooperation with only half of Congress as the other half actively and willfully obstructs all efforts in the development of that program, chances are its probably not the best it can be. That being said, however, there is no doubt in my mind that something needed to be done about healthcare in this country, its costs and our access to it. 

Disclosure: I am an employee of a Fortune 500 financial services leader. Through my employer, I have health insurance coverage. In short, I am not among the millions in this country lacking health coverage. But just because I'm OK doesn't mean that we shouldn't do something for everyone else who isn't. And who is to say how long I would be OK. Even my relatively blessed circumstances, I confronted every year the cold reality that my employer provided health insurance provided a little less in benefits or cost me a little more in premiums, sometimes both. Even from my position of having health insurance, I could see that the situation in the United States when it came to health care was unsustainable. Something would have to be done, not only for those struggling now but for those who would also be struggling in the days to come.  

Yet when President Obama began pushing for health care reform, there was such a rage from the voices of Americans who didn't trust this reform or the guy calling for it. Anger stoked the fires of the Tea Party movement as town halls flared hot with righteous indignation over the effrontery of Obama and his Democratic cohorts to interfere in our health care. The irony was a lot of that anger, fueled by health care providers and their back pocket political connections, was among the very people who were most at risk of increasing costs and decreasing benefits. 

"Obamacare" became a match that could light the fires of Tea Party rage in an instant. Hard right GOP candidates for public office would get the party faithful energized with promises to roll back or repeal Obamacare as a first act of business. And such promises were good for business, the business of politics. 

In the years since the Affordable Care Act went into effect, continuous efforts have been employed by the GOP in the House of Representatives to repeal Obamacare but with no success. And now for the second time, a court case to challenge the ACA has it made it to the Supreme Court which has ruled again that the Act stands. 

So for everyone who has employed fear and loathing over Obamacare to bolster their own political fortunes, now what? If overturning Obamacare has been your mantra, tomorrow is a dangerous place. Instead of the easier route of just making people angry for no good reason other than a selfish grasp at getting and keeping political power, these people will maybe finally have to accept that this is a thing now. And the easy option, destruction, is no longer an option. The harder prospect is to work with the other side of the aisle and make this plan work better. 

Building instead of tearing down? Hope instead of fear?

Scary stuff. 


Tomorrow: Marriage Equality 

Until next time, try to be good to one another.

Dave-El
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You


Monday, June 29, 2015

Dangerous Tomorrows - Part One: The Confederate Flag

Wow! I picked the wrong week to take a vacation from this blog.

In case you were wondering what the hell was up with those six days of posts under the title Breaking Weird: Ask Doctor Hitler, the El family ventured forth from the Fortress of Ineptitude for a week at the beach.  Meanwhile 6 pre-written posts of incredible absurdity (not to mention stupidity) bubbled up on this blog o' mine.  

All the while, various events of considerable import on a social and historical scale were taking place. 

So let's see if I can play catch up.  

I'm calling these posts "Dangerous Tomorrows" because these key events have made the days to come dangerous. Well, dangerous for those who have a vested interest in keeping the present anchored to the past and walled off from the changing world of the future. 

Among the things that happened over last week was the rising tide of voices coming out in opposition to the Confederate Flag.  

In the wake of the horrific murders of 9 African American church goers by an admitted white supremacist who (quite literally) draped himself in the Stars and Bars of the Confederate South, various political leaders began calling for the Confederate flag to be brought down in various public venues. South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (R) said it was time for this flag to come down from state grounds. 2012 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was explicit in calling for the flag to be removed. It helps when you're a Republican not seeking public office to be forthright; all the current crop of declared or would be seekers of the GOP presidential nomination for 2016 twisted themselves in pretzels to speak out against racism but not actually condemning the Confederate flag outright as a symbol of that racism.  

But over all, it seems the tide is moving against those who try to keep their flag separate from the racism the flag has become indelibly linked. The clarion call has been heard all over this country and from others around the world: the Confederate flag must go.  

But make no mistake: there are still strong ties to the Confederate flag in the southern United States. I have no doubt here are those who sincerely see this flag as a symbol of southern heritage and culture. But too many people have abused this symbol and whatever value it may have had as a symbol of southern heritage and culture has been eroded over time by those who would further their racists agendas. To the African American community, this flag is not just a symbol of slavery but of the systemic racism that has plagued them over many, many decades. And others through out America and the rest of the world see that flag as a reflection of regressive attitudes towards the very concept of life, liberty and justice for all. The Stars and Bars evokes a time and a place that did not hold forth the promises of liberty to all people. 

Side note: when I was a younger Dave-El, I was a big fan of The Dukes of Hazzard. Like most adolescent boys who followed this show, my attention was focused on the girl and the car. Oh, Daisy Duke, you totally warped my developing concept of sexually attractive women. 



























Not that I'm complaining! 

And there was the car, the General Lee, a bright orange Dodge Charger with a Confederate flag on the roof. To me, the flag was a symbol of rebellion by the Duke boys, against the tyranny of Boss Hogg and Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane. Hell, it was a rebellion against the forces of gravity itself as the General Lee launched itself airborne over creeks and gullies. Bridges and paved roads were for wimps! There was to my mind no deeper meaning for that flag on the roof of that car than a big old "screw you" to an oppressive and unfair authority. 

But then again, no one has waved that flag in one hand while brandishing a gun in the other, threatening violence to me because of the color of my skin. 

Guys and gals in the good ol' South, it's time to face facts. Your beloved standard of the Confederacy can no longer be a fun time inspiration for the good ol' days and the good ol' boys who seek to keep to a certain way of life alive and well. Too much violence and hate and blood have become linked to this flag. 

And that's a scary prospect for many Southerners, acknowledging that the harsh and brutal meanings associated with an element of their heritage and culture. But its time of face up to that inescapable truth. 

Tomorrow: Obamacare  

Until next time, be good to one other, okay?

Dave-El
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You 

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Doctor Who: Sitting On the Rift

OK, pretend we're in the TARDIS and the TARDIS is in Cardiff. We're all a bit tired, so too is our trusty time and space machine. So we're sittin' and chillin' on the dimensional rift in Cardiff for a bit, recharge our batteries. 

So taking stock of things Doctor Who: 


  • 10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn continues next Sunday as we pick up where we left off; having said good bye to the 10th Doctor, it was time for the 11th. A look back at Series 5 with the new kids, Matt Smith and Steven Moffat, that's on tap in 7 days. 
  • At the end of my last fan fiction, The Crucible of Eternity, I mentioned a follow up story called Prisoners of the Daleks. By now I should have episode one written. The question is when will I post it? I really don't want to compete with Series 9 and I don't want to wait until after Series 9 is complete. I would rather get this story out there and done before the new season kicks off. But that is means we are in for, as the 11th Doctor put it, "squeaky bum time". Anyway, its gonna be a pretty cool story that will wrap up everything I started when I first started this cycle of stories with Time of the Dominion last year. 
  • Since I'm writing this post well in advance of its actual appearance, I'm not really in a position to comment on when the new season will start (as I type this, no date has been announced) or if Jenna Coleman is really dating Prince Harry (although that would be kind of cool, huh?).  By the time this actually uploads, all of that and more could all be well and truly sorted. Maybe I can get a chance to sneak in and do some editing. 


So that's all I have today. Remember to be good to one another and I'll see you here tomorrow for a new blog post. And next Sunday for the return of 10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn. 

Thanks! 

Dave-El
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part Six

Hello and welcome back to Breaking Weird, your internet base for really random shit...excuse me, addiction therapy. 

Nobody's buying that, you know? 

Fine, I'll just pretend! 

So we'll hear from a troubled person who may be anyone, maybe a young blonde woman with a head scarf for a completely random example, who has a problem. He or she...screw it, she has an addiction and she wants to kick the habit. Then we turn to Dr. Hitler for no discernible reason whatsoever. 

OK, we all know the bit? Then let's get this over with.

Yep. Her again. 

























Well. I have to admit, that caught me off guard. So there's still some wonder and mystery in this old world after all, huh?  

Do I dare get my hopes up? Let's see. 

Dr. Hitler, you're on! Take it away, Doc!  





















OK, that's a bit short on specifics but at least you're looking to help another person and...

Hold on. 

"Lick"? 

DAMMIT, DR. HITLER! This is NOT the time OR place to be making crude references to oral sex! 

You're a perv, Dr. Hitler! A total 100% Grade D perv! 

That's it! I am out of here! 

This has been the final edition of Breaking Weird. Thank you for dropping by and now I wish you to leave so I can be alone with Dr. Hitler without any witnesses. 


___________________________________

A few behind the scenes things. Here is the page where I picked up our poor suffering addict.  


































I really have no idea exactly where I got this piece of art but it was drawn by Bill LaCava in a story from from Astonishing #3 (April 1951). Yes, it is a doctor. Not it is NOT Dr. Hitler. 

























The six days of torment are over. Normal stupidity will resume shortly. 

Until then, be good to one another. 

Dave-El 
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You 

Friday, June 26, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part Five

Hi. This is Breaking Weird, your online resource for battling addiction blah blah blah. Someone (probably a blonde woman) will tell us a problem, Dr. Hitler says something or another, you know the drill. 

Hello, what is...oh hell, it IS her again! 

I'll be over here, mixing me a martini.


























A little too much vermouth in this martini. What? Oh, we're back? 

Ahem! 

OK, salt, butter. Great on popcorn, not so great in your bloodstream in mass quantities. 

Dr. Hitler, say something irrelevant.  

























Yes, too much salt and butter is not good for you. Blood pressure goes up and you got yourself a heart attack. 

I already know that! The crazy blonde lady who shows up here every day with a new screwed up addiction, she knows that! The question is, Dr. Hitler, is how does she kick that salt and butter monkey of her back?  

Sometimes I wonder why we attached your previously frozen head to that body. Seemed like a good idea at the time. 

That's it for another round of Breaking Weird. Until next time, can someone get me a fresh olive for my martini?   


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part Four

Hello and welcome once more to Breaking Weird, your internet forum for addiction and the breaking there of. 

Well, you know the drill. We bring out a random person with a problem, then we ask Dr. Hitler for his input which will likely have nothing to do with the patient or the problem. 

Sorry. Shouldn't have let that out. It's been a really trying week. 

Ahem! 

OK, let's hear from our next person in need and see what we can do to help.  


























All right, I know I'm not crazy! It's the same blonde woman every time! What's up with her? How many crazy ass things is she hooked on? 

Ahem! Sorry. Again. 

So...lattes and doughnuts. Very rich, fattening. Cannot be good for your health. So it's very important that she receive so pertinent advise to her problem. 

So, Dr. Hitler, how can she kick her lattes and doughnuts fixation? 





















DAMMIT, DR. HITLER!  

So you have your own problems with lattes and doughnuts? Great! And what the hell do you mean by a "final solution"? That sounds kind of, well, final. I mean, jeez, are you going to have them all shut down? Hey, I enjoy a nice coffee from Starbucks once in a while and hell, a Krispy Kreme doughnut is pretty tasty too! But you want a "final solution" to these places? Hey, just because you can't handle your addictions, don't squirrel this for everybody else!

...

Uh. Yeah. 

And this has been another edition of Breaking Weird. Until next time, someone hook me up to this IV and mainline some coffee in me, stat! 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part Three

And welcome back to Breaking Weird, your internet forum for battling addiction. If you're hooked on something and need to quick, well, you've come to...a place. 

Here's how this work: someone tells us their problem, then we ask our medical expert, Dr. Hitler, to offer advice on how to solve it. 

So welcome to Breaking Weird. How can we help you? 

























I'm sure I've seen her here before. Oh, never mind. 

So we have a young lady with an irresistible desire for dairy products. Really old fashion dairy products but anyhoo...

Dr. Hitler, what can you say that will help this person?





















Dr. Hitler, this is about the patient, not about you. And besides, I don't think anyone needs to know of your struggle in bathroom to make a "mein kampf", so to speak. 

Miss, there's a good reason to lay off the...curds and whey. It'll make it hard to poop. Just like Dr. Hitler. 

So that's it for today's Breaking Weird. Until next time, could someone pass me some toilet paper?  

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part Two

Welcome back to Breaking Weird, your internet forum for battling addiction. We'll hear from someone whose life is out of control, lost in a spiral of hopeless addiction. Then we will ask Dr. Hitler to provide wisdom on how to overcome these problems. 

Hello! You're on a Breaking Weird. What's troubling you today?


























She looks kind of familiar. Ah, it's probably nothing. Anyway, we have a young lady with an eating disorder. A rather oddly specific eating disorder. Now I love a good tasty ham with a teriyaki and pineapple glaze and you can't beat strips of crispy bacon for breakfast. But eating it ALL the time? That's not good for you, dear. So let's ask Dr. Hitler what she can do to pull back from eating so much ham and bacon.  






















Now, Dr. Hitler, we've discussed this. We're here to help people, all people. You've got to let this...this Jewish thing go.  Really, what is with you and Jews? Jesus!  

So sorry about that.  

And that's all the time we have today for Breaking Weird. We'll be back tomorrow. Until then, are you going to eat the rest of that bacon?  

Monday, June 22, 2015

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler: Part One


Hello and welcome to Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler, a new forum here on the internet to help you cope with addictions. 

Today we hear from a young woman who has a strong double addiction.

























Honey, you do seem to be quite stressed about that. Well, let's see what we can do help. Dr. Hitler, what should this young lady do about her addition to sex AND drugs?
























OK, you're saying she needs to exercise will power to curb her addictions? 

You know, I'm thinking if she had any will power, she wouldn't be hooked on sex AND drugs. But what do I know?

Come back tomorrow for another edition of Breaking Weird as we ask Dr. Hitler to provide counsel to another poor soul struggling with addiction. 



Sunday, June 21, 2015

10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn: Series Four and a Half? (The Specials)

Hi there! It's Sunday again and this is when I write up my post about Doctor Who stuff. 

For the last 4 weeks, I've been looking at each series of the revived Doctor Who with Series 1, Series 2Series 3 and Series 4. Today, we'll look at what I call Series 4 1/2. 

In 2008, Series 4 ended with a bang. Russell T Davies had brought Doctor Who back from the dead and put it back on TV for 4 ever increasingly successful years. But as the saying goes, all good things must end as RTD announced before Series 4 went to air that he would be stepping down as Executive Producer and Head Writer for Doctor Who at the end of 2009. Whatever concerns there were about the departure of the man who saved Doctor Who, they were allayed by his hand picked successor, Steven Moffat. Still, there was plenty of sadness to see Russell go. 

Then the news came that Whovians would have to go almost two years without a full season of episodes. It wouldn't be a total desert of no new Who. There would be a series of specials that would run from Christmas 2008 to the end of 2009 before Moffat would come on board and launch a new 5th Series in 2010. 

Among the reasons given for the specials was to give David Tennant some time to honor commitments he had to stage performances including MacBeth. OK, we would stand that, a bit of a breather for David then back at the Doctor full tilt under the direction of new Who honcho Steven Moffat. 

Except that was not the case. 

In the fall of 2008 at an awards ceremony where David Tennant picked up an award for his portrayal of the Doctor, David made the announcement that sent a wall of moans from the collective mouths of the audience assembled there. He was going to step down as the Doctor. 

Noooooooooooooooooooo!!!!

So the year of the specials became a farewell tour for the 10th Doctor. Because of the paucity of episodes, each special took on an added meaning, a level of intensity they otherwise might have lacked. 

So how did this series of specials, this Series 4 1/2 shape up? After the photo, let's take a look.


















#5 The Waters of Mars **
I have seen The Waters of Mars twice, once it originally aired in November 2009 and once the next year when my family went through our box set of the specials. This is not because it is a bad episode. Far from it. This installment of Doctor Who is among the mostly intense, dramatic and graphically realized adventures ever. 

But therein lies my problem with it. The Waters of Mars does its job too well. The sense of doom is extremely overwhelming as we watch the crew members of the Mars base get picked off one by one by...water. Water that turns these explorers on Mars into (for lack of a better description) water spewing zombies. And it didn't take a lot of water; just one drop was sufficient to completely and irreversibly doom a person. All this happens as the Doctor deals with the dread realization that every single one of these people are going to die. These events in Earth's future, the mysterious loss of the entire Mars exploration crew, are fixed and cannot be altered. 

Until the Doctor decides to alter them. The rules of time were put in place by the Time Lords and enforced by the Time Lords but the Time Lords are gone. Only the Doctor is left and he can set his own rules. So he saves three crew members who otherwise died. Except there are limits on the power of a Time Lord for a reason and the Doctor finds that tragedy cannot be completed avoided.  And he does not like who he has become.  

The drama, the horror (oh, the horror) and the tragedy are all expertly brought to life. But there is a distinct lack of the joy that makes a Doctor Who story unique from other science fiction series. I don't know, if perhaps The Waters of Mars had been part of a longer season, I would have rated it higher, maybe right up there with Midnight from Series 4. But instead of being 1 of 13 episodes, its 1 of 5 and we're saying goodbye to the 10th Doctor. 1/5th of our time with this Doctor was spent in a darkness that we...and the Doctor...could not completely escape.   

Another mark against this episode? My daughter refused to take a shower for a very long time. It wasn't pretty.  


#4 The End of Time - Part One **
Oh the pressure was on for this one. And look what was at stake here! 

  • The return of the Master!
  • The return of the Time Lords!
  • And, most importantly, the return of Wilfred Mott. 

And, of course, the swan songs for Russell T Davies and David Tennant. There are some clever bits: 

  • The Doctor's cavalier attitude at the beginning when he arrives on the Oodsphere
  • Wilf's gang of elderly spies finding the Doctor
  • The Doctor & Wilf in the cafe as they watch Donna Noble from across the street. (If you can watch that without crying, then you're a Dalek). 
  • The Master finally gets the Doctor to hear the drumming in his head.


But there's a sort of randomness about this installment. Lots of rushing about but not really getting anywhere. Bits and pieces that careen from overwhelming dread to awkward human interactions. And nothing was more awkward and more random than Joshua Naismith and his creepy daughter. These are really badly realized characters both in writing and in acting. They are barely functioning plot devices to get the Master to a point where he can slap together a world dominating plot. He may have come up with his scheme on the fly but it's a doozy as the Master becomes everyone on Earth. Yes, John Simm gets to wear a lot of hats. And coats. And skirts. 

OK, another thing I didn't care for: that head shaking transformation effect. Maybe the idea was to look low tech to evoke memories of classic Doctor Who. It just looked stupid. Sorry.  



#3 Planet of the Dead ***
I've read the views of other people about Doctor Who and this one does not get a lot of love and I'm not sure why. My main misgiving is that we only see the TARDIS at the very end (exterior only). Other than that, we have a rollicking adventure on another world (portrayed by sunny Dubai) where the Doctor promises to save everyone. And actually does! Well, except for the bus driver but that was the driver's fault for not listening.  

The Doctor and Lady Christina make a good team and I hated that we did not get to seem them together again after the end of this story. And we get UNIT in action, always nice to see them back on Doctor Who. Hey, they actually take down a alien monster by shooting at it! The Brigadier would've been so proud. Meanwhile UNIT scientific adviser and Doctor fan boy Malcolm is a joy to watch whenever he's on screen. Man, I wish we could see him again. (Malcolm and the 12th Doctor? Ooh boy, that wouldn't be pretty. But it would be fun!) 

I guess the knock against Planet of the Dead is that it's just there, a diversion from the doom we know is coming. A doom we're reminded of at the end when the Doctor hears the prophecy: "He will knock four times."  

Yikes!  

Sometimes, we really need a good diversion. 


#2 The End of Time - Part Two ****
After all the pieces are moved around the chessboard in Part One, we get some serious stuff in the 2nd installment.

  • Donna Noble vs. a bunch of Masters...and wins! (Even if she doesn't know how.) 
  • Worst. Rescue. EVER! 
  • Another heart string pulling moment with the Doctor and Wilf looking at the Earth from a spaceship.
  • That spaceship vs. a whole mess of missiles. Oh look, Wilfred Mott is a space cowboy! 
  • The Time Lords are a collective pain in the ass, aren't they? And the Time Lord President is a particularly painful boil on that ass.
  • Gotta admit, though, the Prez taking down a planet full of Masters with a flick of his wrist and a smirk was fun. 
  • The Master saves the Doctor and takes down the Time Lords? OK, then! 
  • And the Doctor survives it all! He's beaten the prophecy! 


And then...

We find out who knocks four times. And it breaks your heart. 

The expected conventions of the Doctor's regeneration are upended. Here, the 10th Doctor fixes himself with the same face. But the process has started and there's no stopping it.

The Doctor popping in on his friends, former companions, was a bit sweet even if it was a bit overlong. And the build up to the regeneration goes on forever. "I don't want to go!" says the Doctor. "Go already!" I'm thinking. (Well, not really but I almost wanted to.) 

So the big farewell for the 10th Doctor may have seemed a bit overwrought but hey, when a much beloved Doctor is leaving, I think that's allowed.



#1 The Next Doctor ****
The Christmas special immediately following the end of Series 4 starts off on a hard to beat note: Christmas in London, 1851? Classic! The Doctor finally gets a proper Christmas snow. 

The plot by the Cybermen is okay I guess but what really drives this episode are human stories at the core of this special. And the stand out for that is guest star David Morrissey. Some kind of zappy-wappy makes him think he's the Doctor and he begins crafting his version of the Doctor's tools such as a "sonic" screwdriver and a TARDIS that's a hot air balloon. Morrissey's gusto at being the Doctor makes you really wish he could actually be the Doctor. But alas, this "next Doctor" is a fiction and David Morrissey's portrayal of the grief, pain and loss his all too human character faces is incredible.  

And then there's Miss Hartigan, a woman who is fed up with the limits of her world and the men who rule it. So she's allied with the Cybermen who kill a group of men in a particularly terrifying sequence as Miss Hartigan very casually directs the carnage around her. And yet we see again that grief, pain and loss is a driving force. The indignities and injustices she has endured in her past are not detailed but we can guess. And it must be particularly galling for a woman with a strength of will like Miss Hartigan. But her determination to exert her will on the world leads her to destruction. The Doctor did try to give her a chance to stop. 

Puttering about time and space on his own, the theme of grief, pain and loss are echoed with the Doctor. Alone after losing a companion in the absolute worst way he could lose one, he's determined to stay alone. Of course the universe has other plans and the Doctor is caught up in a new mystery. In the end, grief, pain and loss drives one person to death and destruction while another feels the hurt but resolves to move forward for his family and friends. And in the middle is the Doctor. Which way will he choose? We will see the price the Doctor pays for his choice over the coming year. But at the end of The Next Doctor, the Doctor relents for a moment and agrees to stay for Christmas dinner.

And God bless us everyone! 

__________________________________

Next Sunday, I take break from 10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn but this series of posts will return the Sunday after that (July 5th) with the beginning of the Moffat era and the arrival of Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor. 

Starting tomorrow, I begin a 6 part daily series of posts and...well, it may well be the stupidest things I've ever posted. (And I once posted a 10 part series called The Internet Is For Corn so, that's saying something.) 

In the meantime, thanks for dropping by and until next time, be good to one another.

Dave-El 
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You 

Saturday, June 20, 2015

The State of the Blog

Hi there! I'm Dave-El and this is I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, also known as ISGMSAY which is pronounced exactly the way you think it is.  

Today, I want to be a bit reflective about this silly, goofy thing I do here every day. 

First of all, it is EVERY day. Yep, since January 1st, I've posted something every single day. In 2014, I posted 300 times over the course of the entire year. So there were 65 days where I didn't. But this year, so far there's something here every day. You know, for that kind of dedication, you would think I would be more of a beloved world treasure among the internetatti.  

When I began this blog in March 2013, I really didn't think of what my mission statement for this endeavor would be beyond "Write about whatever pops into my damn head." And so far, I seem to be sticking to that.

Posts range from Doctor Who geekfests, sarcastic introspective musings, off the wall who the hell knows that I'm doing (wait til you see what crazy stuff goes down on this blog next week!) and rage filled rants against the stupidity and the evil this world seems to have in abundant supply (like yesterday's post on the murder of 9 people in Charleston SC.) 

One thing I thought I would do more of is kvetch. With a title like I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, you would think this blog would be filled with more posts on waiting in long lines, bad drivers, terrible customer service experiences...you know, me bangin my head in frustration with First World problems. 

But really this blog is about everything and nothing which is a fairly accurate representation of my thought processes.

I don't think much about interactions with this blog. Mostly I just assume I'm talking to myself. But occasionally I look at the blog stats to see what's going on. Below is a list of the top 10 posts accessed through Thursday, June 18th. 


 

Seven of those 10 posts are more recent, all in June, all but one from the past week. What interests me are the older ones that appear on this list.

Two of them are relative newcomers: Untold Tales is a very brief Doctor Who/Star Trek mash up script while Surreal Knock Knocks Jokes is what you think it is and yes, it's also not as funny as you think it is too. 

But the one that really intrigues me is at #7: The Amazing 200! It's a blog post I wrote in September 2013, my 200th post to this blog. The thing is The Amazing 200 is always there. As I said, I don't check these stats that often but when I do, that post is there. Other posts come and go but this one is a constant presence in the top 10. Why? 


The premise was I would post 200 (approximately) things about myself. Now I am an awesome person, no doubt. Really, my humility alone is unbeatable. But is that enough to keep driving traffic to that post week after week for almost two years? 

I'm guessing it's probably the women. Here are pictures of some of the women who made appearances in that post.






Zooey Deschanel is America's Sweetheart and Tina Fey is the Goddess of Comedy. After over 30 years, Catherine Bach as Daisy Duke is still a big draw. And I once read that Katy Perry is one of the most Googled women on the internet. 

But could the appeal of that post really be about the women? Maybe its because of the kittens.


Or maybe Invader Zim?



What makes one blog post a weekly favorite while other posts are not read nearly as much? If I could figure that out, I would rule the internet. OK, I already rule the internet but I would rule it more overtly. 

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The coming week is going to be very busy for me. But I've come too far to stop now: this blog will post every day, no matter what. This is my promise to you, the noble and befuddled reader who came here by mistake because you thought this was an S&M site. 

No, it's not. 

Not yet.  

Anyway, here's what's coming up. 

Tomorrow is Sunday. All right I can't take credit for that. Sunday was already on the schedule. But I can take credit for tomorrow's weekly Doctor Who post as my look back at 10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn looks at Series 4 1/2, otherwise known as the year of the specials. Next Sunday will be another Doctor Who post but I'll be taking break from the 10 year review. 10 Years of Doctor Who Reborn will return the Sunday after that, July 5th. 

What is harder to explain is what will be posting here Monday through Saturday of next week. Have you ever struggled with an addiction to something and wondered, "Hey, if Hitler was alive and a doctor, what kind of advice would he offer?" If you have...and that would be really weird...then look for not one, not two but six (SIX!) days (in a row, mind you!) of...

Breaking Weird: Ask Dr. Hitler. 

It may be the dumbest things I've ever posted since The Internet Is For Corn and It Came Through Bruce Wayne's Window

So I hope you find it amusing. And hopefully not that offensive. 

Oh I am so on a fast track to hell.

And I'm so glad my suffering amuses you. 

All Things Must Pass

Hi there. Today is post # 1,600 to I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You. I'm not sure I should count all of them since some were ...