Saturday, January 31, 2015

Doctor Who: What Was, Is and Will Be

Friday, January 30, 2015

The Company We Keep

It is said that we are defined by the company we keep. Which is not universally true. Look at me, for example. I hang around a bunch of weirdos but I'm certainly not a-

Never mind. 


As I was saying, the concept of being identified by other parties we associate with, if not universally true is consistently true enough to be considered seriously, even if isn't a fair association. If I were to say "I am a Christian" (which is part of the stats on the back of the Topps limited edition Dave-El bubble gum card), there might be a visceral reaction on your part. You might think, "Dave-El is against gay marriage." And you would be wrong  but the more hard core conservatives who identify as Christian put out so much heart that it burns away everything else associated with Christianity. 


If I tell you I'm a free market capitalist, am I to be lumped in with the greedy bastards who dismiss the poor? "Screw you, poor people!" the mega wealthy shout from their gold plated yachts. First of all, I am not rich like that or like anything for that matter. But if I were very, very rich, I wouldn't say "Screw you, poor people" from my gold plated yacht. No, I would say it from my impregnable mountain fortress made entirely of diamonds. OK, maybe toss in a few emeralds 'cause I wouldn't want to seem pretentious. So, yes, I would be a greedy bastard. 


The point is sometimes we are inaccurately judged by the company we keep and other times we're dead center of the crowd, reflecting the attributes, good or ill, of those around us. 


What got me thinking about this was President Obama's recent trip to Saudi Arabia. The Saudis have been more or less fairly strong allies of the United State in a very tumultuous region of the world. So Obama popping in to pay his respects to the family of the recently deceased King Abdullah was a decent thing to do.  





Michelle Obama was also with the President and immediately we are reminded how different the Saudis are from us. There's the First Lady who by her very existence and every action is in total defiance to how women are treated and expected to behave in Saudi Arabia. Michelle is out there in the open, wearing PANTS and NOTHING covering her head while Saudi women are not allowed to be seen in such a state in public. They are also not permitted to drive or hold public office or...you know what? Think about whatever your wife, girlfriend, sister, daughter did today and chances are a Saudi woman would've been in violation of Saudi law at some point in the day, probably before lunch time. 

Now I'm not dissing on Obama. (This is not Fox News.) After all, George W Bush was so close to the Saudi royal family that he held hands with the then Crown Prince (now King) of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud* while walking on his Crawford ranch admiring the sagebrush. OK, flowers. (Kinda makes this ickier, don't it?



*Side note: Does he have to be called by his full name all the time? I mean, that would be a real bitch in an emergency. "Look out, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud! You're about-" *SLAM!* "-to be hit by a bus....ouch." 

Pick a President who didn't keep the Saudis on their speed dial. (OK, Carter didn't but they didn't have speed dial back then so shut up.) Sometimes relations between the US and Saudi Arabia have been strained. But for the most part, Saudi Arabia is seen as pro-Western and an ally of the United States

And who can blame us for wanting to stay in good with Saudi Arabia and its royal family. The stability of Saudi Arabia in the volatile Middle East is way more valuable to the United States than the ocean of oil the Saudi's rest upon.  

And yet...

This is a country that controls its citizens in an iron grip. Particularly the treatment of women is reprehensible and cast in sharp relief compared to the United States and other countries in the Western World where more women are shattering more barriers to accomplish more than women have ever accomplished before. 

And Saudi Arabia, subjugator of women, considers the United States a friend. And we are more than willing to reciprocate. 

What does this say about the United States, bastion of freedom and liberty, when this is the company we keep? 

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Tomorrow: the return of Doctor Who stuff! Yay! 

Until then, be good to one another.

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

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Duck the Goose


Hi there! It's going to be a light post today because of things and stuff.  So I decided to share this photo that someone posted on Twitter a few weeks back.



At first I thought this was apropos of nothing but then I begin to think, "Am I the goose or the person on the other side of the door?"

The person is a master of this world. This person has opposable thumbs and can work doors with impunity. Yet a single obstacle, a goose, stands in the way of this supremacy. There are times that I feel like that: I have the knowledge of what needs to be done. Hell, I may even have the skills. But I find myself unable to do what needs to be done by an obstacle that is both significant and insignificant.  Often, my "goose" is self-doubt. Self-doubt is in and of itself not a bad thing. It's a brake on us from doing stupid things. But it can be an obstruction to doing what needs to be done because we are too afraid of making the wrong decision. 

Then there's the goose, up against a world he didn't make, faced with problems that a goose simply has no solutions for. The goose lacks opposable thumbs among other things. For whatever reason this goose has decided to guard this spot (maybe a nest of eggs is nearby or he just really likes to stand there), the goose has no choice but to do battle with the door and the people who come through it with whatever he has: a squawk or a hiss, a furious flapping of wings, pecking. Sometimes we're the goose; we're facing a problem that is way beyond us but we have to stand our ground. We may not have the knowledge or the skills but dammit we have the will. Which can be a good thing or a bad thing. 

OK, I'm done. Everyone, be good to one another. 

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

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Random Stuff 'n' Junk (Wednesday, 01/28/2015)


Hi there! Welcome to my blog, I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You. I'm Dave-El and my forecast for the weather is a 100% chance of whatever is happening outside your window right now. 

Let's see what's rattling around the old Dave-El skull.

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Apparently New Yorkers are NOT happy the big Snowpocalypse actually missed the Big Apple dropping only about 7 inches of snow. The head of the National Weather Service (NWS) actually felt compelled to apologize. Look, here's the deal: if someone predicts something bad is going to happen and it happens but its actually less bad than you figured, that's a blessing. Please don't complain about a blessing. And you damn well know that if the storm had hit New York City even harder, the bitching and moaning would be just as intense. Or what if the NWS had forecast 7 inches of snow and THEN a couple of feet hit the city, then we would have a very viable example of shit hitting a fan. 

Meanwhile the folks a bit north of NYC wish they could complain that the snow was LESS than the forecasters predicted but nooooooooo! They're getting slammed with up to nearly 3 feet of snow. I have co-workers in New Hampshire and Connecticut who I think would've been happy to get less than what the meteorologists had forecasted.Stay safe and warm up there, guys. 

Blizzard

And New Yorkers, if you need to see some more whiteness than what you got....

Fox News

You're welcome. 

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We might not need Mother Nature to do us in; we seemed determined to do it to ourselves. A few years back, KFC introduced a "sandwich" called the Double Down. This culinary... thing consisted of 2 slabs of fried chicken meat smushed together with bacon and cheese in the middle. 

It seems KFC has decided to double down on the Double Down by introducing this monstrosity.  













So instead of bacon, the two pieces of boneless chicken are wrapped around chemically treated mystery meat.  

To the rest of the world, I say this: fear us. For if Americans can eat this thing and NOT die, then we're pretty damn well as invincible as we think we are.  

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I reckon this person thinks of America like that.  



Sarah Palin made news when her teleprompter went down in the middle of a speech she was giving.  To her credit, the former governor of Alaska kept right on talking. Except she made even less sense than usual. 

Sarah's one of those people who have made fun of Obama's use of teleprompters for his speeches. Which is kind of weird given that everybody uses a teleprompter for major speeches. So Palin goes off the rails when she loses her electronic backup. Here's an excerpt: 

"Things must change for our government. Look at it. It isn’t too big to fail. It’s too big to succeed! It's too big to succeed, so we can afford no retreads or nothing will change with the same people and same policies that got us into the status quo. Another Latin word, status quo, and it stands for, ‘Man, the middle-class everyday Americans are really gettin’ taken for a ride.'"

Yeah. 

As Jon Stewart of The Daily Show said, “Now we know what it’s like to get cornered by Palin at an open-bar wedding."

Click here for more of Jon Stewart's take on this and some other goofy speeches from other Republican far right nut cases at this past weekend's Freedom Summit in Iowa. 

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Speaking of not making sense, here's something that you don't see everyday: Fox News Hosts Side With Obama Over Netanyahu Snub

Wow! 

The deal is that Rep. John Boehner invited Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu to Washington DC in an end run around the President. Things are a bit chilly between Netanyahu and President Obama what with the President suggesting to Netanyahu that Israel should stop building so many settlements and Netanyahu basically giving the administration finger and building them anyway.  And this is not a problem unique to Obama. President Bush had the same message ("stop building") and got the same response ("screw you, we're building").  

So Chris Wallace and Shepard Smith actually took up for Obama's position on this and criticized Boehner's conduct. It helps, I suppose, that Obama's stance is the same as his Republican predecessor and with the same results. Although that hasn't stopped other criticism of Obama for taking actions or holding position that were in line with George W Bush, his father, Ronald Reagan and any other number of prior Presidents, Republican or otherwise.  

Anyway, I hope this display of reasoned analysis is just an aberration. If Fox News actually starts acting "fair and balanced", well there goes a whole bunch of our fun right there. 

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Hey, Fox News, maybe you can jump on Obama's case about this. You know how the President just loves sending out drones to do stuff, right? Now everyone has drones. Which should be no surprise that this happened: Small Drone Found On White House Grounds.

So go to it, Fox! Here, I'll help: "We're supposed to trust Obama with Benghazi and Obamacare and he can't even protect his residence from a drone?" Be sure to add a "harumph".  

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Apparently Tom Brady's deflated balls are still a thing.

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OK, I can't do anymore damage around here today. To everyone in the New England states of the US, stay off the ice and stay by the fire. Unless you don't have a fireplace. Then you might want to move away from the fire and call the fire department.

Until next time, be good to one another.
  

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Adventures of the Fightin' Five


The following is the fault of Aaron Meyers because....well, he started it with this post: 



Which prompted these tweets from your's truly:  
2 hours ago
"The Monster From the Abyss" Thrill to the adventure as the Fightin' Five battles James Cameron!"

 "Hey can I join?" "No we're the Fightin' Five" "But I have ninja skills, a laser gun, I can lift 10 times-" "I said FIVE kid!"

Since I am known never to let a good idea go to waste...or a bad idea for that matter....

_____________________________________________

Fate has brought together FIVE extraordinary men! 
  • Hank Hennesey
  • Tom-Tom
  • Irv the Nerve Haganah
  • Frenchy the Fox
  • Granite Gallero

Combined they form the heart of America's Super Squad! They are...

THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 

_________________________________________
 
One day at the world famous HQ of the Fightin’ Five, a young man approaches the desk of Hank Hennesey who looks up to greet this visitor.
 
Hank: Yes, young man, how may I help you?

Bruce: Hello, Mr. Hennesey. My name is Bruce and I would like to join the Fightin’ Five!

Hank: You would like to join the Fightin’ Five?

Bruce: Yes, sir!

Hank: But you can’t join the Fightin’ Five!

Bruce: But I have considerable skills that I believe would aid you in your fight against injustice & evil!

Hank: It doesn’t matter. You can’t join the Fightin’ Five!

Bruce: Why not, sir?

Hank: Because we are the Fightin’ Five!

Bruce: And…?

Hank: So you understand why you can’t join the Fighin’ Five!

Bruce: No, sir, I don’t.

Hank: Sigh! Look, there are FIVE of us!

Bruce: And…?

Hank: And if we let you join, there would be SIX!

Bruce: But…

Hank: We can’t be the Fightin’ Five if there are SIX of us, now can we?

Bruce: But…

Hank: I mean, if we call ourselves the Fightin’ Five and there’s SIX of us, we would have no credibility.

Bruce: So call yourselves the Fightin’ Six.

Hank: The FIGHTIN’ SIX?! What sort of nonsense is that, the Fightin’ Six!

Bruce: Well…

Hank: You lose the whole alliterative quality of the Fightin’ Five!

Irv: Hey, Hank! What’s up?

Hank: This kid wants to join the Fightin’ Five!

Irv: WHAT? He can’t join the Fightin’ Five!

Hank: I know!

Irv: We can’t have six of us if we’re the Fighin’ Five!

Bruce: What’s wrong with the Fightin’ Six?

Irv: Of all the stupid…

Hank: He says he has certain skills.

Irv: Understanding the importance of alliteration is not one of them.

Tom-Tom: Hello, everybody!

Frenchy: Bonjour!

Granite: Uh, hi.

Tom-Tom: Who’s the kid?

Bruce: My name is Bruce.

Tom-Tom: Bruce, huh?

Hank: He wants to join the Fightin’ Five!

Tom-Tom: No way!

Frenchy: Non!

Granite: Uh, how come he can’t?

Irv: If we let him join, there would be six of us.

Tom-Tom: That would undermine our credibility.

Hank: Not to mention ruin that whole alliterative image we’ve established.

Frenchy: Oui!

Granite: Uh, but what can he do?

Irv: Does it matter?

Tom-Tom: Well, maybe we should hear him out.

Hank: Sigh! OK, fine! Kid, what can you do?

Bruce: I have mastered all fighting styles from boxing to the martial arts.

Irv: OK, what else?

Bruce: I am also an accomplished aerialist. I can traverse great distances and heights using a wide range of acrobatic skills.

Tom-Tom: That’s kind of cool.

Bruce: I also have developed and conditioned my mind to make me a top flight scientist, detective and engineer!

Granite: Uh, that’s pretty smart.

Bruce: I have created an armory of non-lethal but very effective weaponry.

Frenchy: Mon dieu!

Bruce: And whatever I can’t handle with my physical or mental abilities, I have an absurd amount of wealth to buy whatever I need.

Tom-Tom: Whew! I have to admit, that’s pretty amazing!

Irv: I gotta say, Hank, he would make a very valuable asset to the team.

Hank: Yeah, a team that is, if you will recall, is called the Fightin’ FIVE!

Tom-Tom: Yeah.

Frenchy: Oui!

Irv: Well, I guess we could…let someone go?

Hank & Tom-Tom: No!

Frenchy: Non!

Granite: Uh, what?

Irv: OK, OK, I’m not a big fan of the idea but…geez! This guy is really good!

Hank: Well…I suppose he is.

Granite: Uh, so…uh, who do we…let go?

Hank, Irv & Tom-Tom: Frenchy!

Frenchy: Sacre bleu!

Granite: Uh, what?

Bruce: Wait a minute, guys!

Tom-Tom: No offense, Frenchy!

Irv: You know, we’ve needed to shake this team up for a while now!

Hank: This is going to be great!

Frenchy: NON!

Bruce: Hold up, everybody!

Tom-Tom: What? You’re in, kid! You’re in the Fightin’ Five!

Hank: Well, as soon as we clear out Frenchy’s locker…

Frenchy: Mon dieu!

Bruce: No, no! Look I don’t want to break up the Fightin’ Five!

Irv: You’re not breaking up the Fightin’ Five. We’ll still be the Fightin’ Five!

Bruce: But a Fightin’ Five without Frenchy? That would be unheard of. 

Frenchy: Qui!

Hank: We’re willing to give it a shot.

Frenchy: Non!

Bruce: No, I think my path is taking me elsewhere. I need to go back home.

Hank: But kid…

Bruce: Think about my future. Maybe take care of that problem with the bats flitting all over the place.

Irv: C’mon, Bruce!

Bruce: No, I must go! Thank you, Fightin’ Five, and good luck.

Tom-Tom: Kid, wait…

Granite: Uh, he’s gone now.

Hank: Yeah. Yeah, he’s gone now.

Irv: So what now?

Hank: We go back to work, fightin’ the forces of evil as…

Hank, Irv, Tom-Tom & Granite: THE FIGHTIN’ FIVE!!

Tom-Tom: Hey, where did Frenchy go?

Irv: You don’t think he’s mad at us, do you?

Tom-Tom: Nah. But just in case…

Granite: Uh, what?

Tom-Tom: How do you all feel about… the Fightin’ FOUR?

Hank: The Fightin' FOUR?!? Are you crazy? 
 
---the end---

And so ends today's tale of suspense and adventure! But don't despair, more adventures are coming. We have not seen the last of...

THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 
THE FIGHTIN' FIVE! 

Until next time, be good to one another. 

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

Monday, January 26, 2015

Hey, Internet! Whazzup?


Dave-El here and welcome to I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, the blog that asks...

Hey, Internet! Whazzup?  

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Sunday marked the historic occasion of Duke's Mike Krzyzewski getting his 1,000 win as a head basketball coach, the first Division I basketball coach to do so. Sweet! Coach K has consistently run a high quality program at Duke and serves as an inspiration for other coaches and teams across the country. There are so few people in sports truly worthy of admiration; Coach Mike Krzyzewski is at the top of the very short list. Congratulations, Coach K! 

Duke v St John's

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Greensboro NC hosted the U.S. Figure Skating Championships this past week which culminated on Saturday for the woman (we gotta see that!) and on Sunday for the men (eh, why not?). No, I did not go even though it was within a few miles of my Fortress of Ineptitude. I had enough on my plate this weekend to keep me busy. (OK, sleeping.)  Anyway, I like women's figure skating because I can admire the grace and the beauty of the female form without appearing too pervy.  

The big winner for the women was Ashley Wagner who won her third title in 4 years at the incredibly ancient age of 23. Yes, 23! That's OLD in ice skating. In fact, Ashley is, at 23 (I can't stress this enough!) the OLDEST person to win this thing. 23! Gee, somebody issue this woman a walker and an AARP card, quick! 



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For every single Saturday and/or Sunday since the weekend of March 30, 2013, I have posted at least 1 thing related to Doctor Who. Until this weekend. I sat down to write a Doctor Who post and was totally stumped on what I should write about. Don't get me wrong, I'm still as much of a Doctor Who geek as ever but I think I just a needed a bit of a breather from the topic, at least writing about it. I'm checking various sites on an almost daily basis to see if there is anything posted from the filming of Series 9. So I expect Doctor Who posts will resume this weekend. 



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I can be found over on Twitter (click here) where this past weekend I reached the epic milestone of... 154 followers. Yeah, I know. That's no big deal for a lot of people on Twitter but it is for me. I started on Twitter in 2012 and after 3 years I'm at 154? But I haven't really tended that particular social media garden but lately I've a bit more to say which has lead to an increase in favorites and retweets which has driven the number of followers up. (For a long time, the number seemed stuck at around 120 to 125.)  

Here are some pithy Tweets that got some attention: 


  • Without Fox News how would we know where the bottom is?
  • I really don't want to comment on hats. I mean, the science on hats is not all in.
  • Hats are a liberal agenda out to destroy American values! --Senator who received donation from Rogaine lobbyist
  • In case you're wondering if I built the Laser Blaster Death Cannon 3000 myself. No, I bought it from
  • The expression "half ass" suggests there may be other ass measurements but no one says "1/4 ass" or "2/3 ass".
  • I'm so bored now, my self loathing lacks the energy to decimate my ego.


And now you've changed your thinking from "Gee, only 154 followers?" to "Damn, that's why he only has 154 followers." Well, you go ahead and think that, see if I care. 

And I'm so glad my suffering amuses you. 

Be good to one another.  

Sunday, January 25, 2015

What the Hell, Amazon?


Hi there! Dave-El here and this is my blog, I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, where today's special value is 40% off misplaced commas.  

When I go on Twitter, I get a Tweet from Amazon with "Today's Best Deals on Amazon". Most of the times it's something pretty obvious like a smart phone or a TV. If there is any doubt, there may also be some description of the item ("Waffle Maker, 75% Off"). 

But frequently there are items that just appear with no description of what the item is. It's just... there and it's not clear exactly what the item was supposed to be. 

This is when I go, "What the hell, Amazon?"  

OK, this kind of looks like a margarita but I have questions: 

  • Why is it tilted like that?
  • Why is the margarita not pouring out?
  • While is there a tiny Dalek on the left edge?
  • Why is the Dalek waving a pennant? 


Damn it, Amazon, what exactly are you trying to sell me here?  



This is some kind of... stabby sort of thing? I'm unclear from the image what the scale of this thing is. Is it a tiny shrimp fork? If it is, is the Amazon deal for just ONE shrimp fork because I'm sure that's not really worth the trouble. Or maybe it's a larger item, like a forked thing that demons in Hell poke the damned with in the ass. 

Surely the denizens of Hell are not a market for Amazon.com.  Who knows. Amazon does have their hooks into everybody.  



This next item up from Amazon is clearly a skunk on Astroturf. 

Obviously. 

No mystery here, right?

...
Alright, Amazon, why the hell do I need a skunk on Astroturf?!?!

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Coming up in later editions, more strange items on sale from Amazon.

Until then, be good to one another.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Free McDonald's Mystery Pie

On Monday, January 19th, my daughter and I made a quick run to McDonald's to get some lunch. There was a sign on the drive thru menu that said "Free Holiday Pie with each order of a McCafe drink." I was getting my wife a McSmoothie (made with McPineapple and McMango) so what the hell, we got a free pie. 

But what KIND of pie was it? 

Well, that was kind of a mystery. Or a McMystery, if you will. 

David: Look what we got at McDonald's!
Andrea: What is it? 
Miranda: It's a free pie!

Andrea: What kind of pie is it?
Miranda: It's a baked pie! 
Andrea: I mean, what type of pie?
David: It's a baked pie. It's right there on the box!
Andrea: I mean, what's IN the pie?
Miranda: Er, flavor?
Andrea: What kind of flavor?
David: Flavor...flavored?
Miranda: Whatever it is, it's bursting with it.
David: Also baked with love. 
Andrea: But what KIND of pie is it?
Miranda and David: BAKED PIE!
Andrea (sigh): I just wanted to know what's in the pie!
Miranda: Flavor and love, Mom. 
Andrea: I give up.































In case you're wondering what was really inside the pie, it was custard. 

What kind of custard? 

Er, custard flavored custard? 

You all be good to one another. And may your days be filled with flavor and baked with love.

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

Spinner Rack Flashback: June 1977

Hi there! One of my favorite blogs is Diversions of the Groovy Kind which is dedicated to comic books from the late 1960s through the 1970s ...