Monday, January 28, 2008

Things that never grow old

I'm not the type of person who brings work home. I can walk through the doors at the end of the day and, poof! All done. I look forward to going home and being with my family.

That said, there's nothing quite as satisfying as walking in the house and having my 8 year old daughter scream "daddy" as she runs to give me a hug.

I'll never get tired of that.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Wisconsin doesn't get a lot of respect in hollywood. It's often regarded as a state with cows, cheese, hicks, and less than ideal weight residents. We're often the brunt of jokes. And babes? Forget it. If you're not from California or Florida you ain't no babe. You even have a better chance being from Nebraska!

Well no more. Thanks to the Wisconsin Bikini Girls. Two sisters and a cousin have been "exposing" themselves for some time. They finally got noticed. From JSonline:

The girls pick the coldest home game of the year, and they wear their bikini tops under heavy coats. From the waist down they're like any other fans in snow pants and long underwear.

During breaks in the action, time-outs and such, the girls whip off their coats and jump around with their sign, hoping to attract a TV camera or at least get on the Jumbotron. Fans in Section 126, especially guys, seem to go for it. Ashley said two "little ladies" in the seats behind them always hold their coats during the bikini outbursts.

The girls' seats are 10 rows behind the Packers bench. "A couple of them turn around and take notice. We wouldn't mind Brett Favre calling us up," Jen said.

Lambeau has always had its share of fans, especially drunk and big-bellied ones, who expose skin in frigid weather. The bikini girls have become their own franchise, and the beer-gut guys ask to pose with them for photos.

Pat, father to Jen and Ashley, goes along to the games. He remembers the first time the girls went wild.

"Jen said, 'Do you mind if we take our clothes off? We've got our bikinis underneath. Mom said it was OK.' "

They didn't want him to lose his four season tickets - two that he had inherited from his father, and two that he spent 32 years on the waiting list to get.

"They're just having fun," he said. "It's kind of a tradition."

As it was a nationally televised game, they were noticed by Maxim magazine and have a small spread in the current issue. Good for them and good for Wisconsin. Anyone who lives here knows there are plenty of babes and I would put up our girls against any anywhere else. I hope this helps break a bit of the stereotype we have here.

Ironically, Wendy over at Boots and Sabers has lamented that it's never the "hot" guys who take their shirts off during the games. Funny that it's the guys who get that wish first.

CIty living

A science teacher at Custer High School is being fired for, of all things, not living in Milwaukee. Like most city jobs, there is a requirement to live in the city. He did not. As such . . . bye, bye.

There are two sides to this. On the one side, the rule exists and teachers know about it. Disregard the rule and I think one should expect to be fired. It's that simple. I know of another case of this happening. It didn't make the news and I'm not about to say who or where it occurred. But it was a flagrant disregard for the residency requirement. To a point of being stupid.

I understand the residency rule. You work as a city employee, I think it's good to live i the city. It gives you a perspective of the city you may not have if you lived somewhere else. But, is it really necessary? After all, teachers aren't government representatives, or policemen or women, they are not responsible for making decisions that affect a community . . . why make them live here? Also, we have a severe shortage of teachers and a lack of quality teachers. Perhaps now is a good time to revisit the residency requirement.

Now, there is a reason the union wouldn't want this . . . voter base. Having all their minions in one place where they can be controlled is best for . . . the union. Nevermind what's best for the kids.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Paige Davis is back!

I used to be a Trading Spaces junkie. It was really he first of that kind of program. I liked it. There was a mix of design, carpentry, and other DIY projects done is the span of a couple of days. What really made the show, though, was Paige Davis. Cute and perky, she really gave the show personality. She left after a couple of seasons citing a desire to be with her family and do more stage performing.

The show sort of died after she left. I stopped watching. No question Paige did it for me.

Well, she's back, and the first program already has that old spark the program used to have. Not sure if I'll be a regular watcher, but it's nice to see Paige Davis again.

Ah, guilty pleasures.

Here she is, Miss America . . .

I can't say as I recall last year, but this year's broadcast of the MA pageant was on TLC. No offense to TLC but the MA pageant has really become insignificant. FIrst off, it's just sort of creepy. I know supporters would point to the positives that come from the pageant as well as the reign . . . well, at least they'd want to. There have been a handful of scandals involving contestants in several of the pageant shows. Beyond that, though, it really seems archaic. The show (I DVR'd it and zoomed through most of it) was kind of a joke. Not polished. And, TLC turned the whole ordeal in to a reality show leading up to the pageant. To me, that's the height of becoming a joke. I'm sure they thought it would help with the popularity of reality shows. Don't know. I only caught sections here and there. Boring.

Wisconsin made it in to the finals. I thought she was cute but was too muscular in the chest. Made her cleavage look funny. While she wasn't perfect on the violin, she was the most entertaining talent.

In the end, Michigan won. Good for her.

Maybe next year the pageant will be on TNT.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I am not alone

Solitude vs Loneliness
Loneliness is marked by a sense of isolation. Solitude, on the other hand, is a state of being alone without being lonely and can lead to self-awareness.

As the world spins faster and faster—or maybe it just seems that way when an email can travel around the world in fractions of a second—we mortals need a variety of ways to cope with the resulting pressures. We need to maintain some semblance of balance and some sense that we are steering the ship of our life.

Otherwise we feel overloaded, overreact to minor annoyances and feel like we can never catch up. As far as I'm concerned, one of the best ways is by seeking, and enjoying, solitude.

That said, there is an important distinction to be established right off the bat. There is a world of difference between solitude and loneliness, though the two terms are often used interchangeably.

From the outside, solitude and loneliness look a lot alike. Both are characterized by solitariness. But all resemblance ends at the surface.

Loneliness is a negative state, marked by a sense of isolation. One feels that something is missing. It is possible to be with people and still feel lonely—perhaps the most bitter form of loneliness.

Solitude is the state of being alone without being lonely. It is a positive and constructive state of engagement with oneself. Solitude is desirable, a state of being alone where you provide yourself wonderful and sufficient company.

Solitude is a time that can be used for reflection, inner searching or growth or enjoyment of some kind. Deep reading requires solitude, so does experiencing the beauty of nature. Thinking and creativity usually do too.

Solitude suggests peacefulness stemming from a state of inner richness. It is a means of enjoying the quiet and whatever it brings that is satisfying and from which we draw sustenance. It is something we cultivate. Solitude is refreshing; an opportunity to renew ourselves. In other words, it replenishes us.

Loneliness is harsh, punishment, a deficiency state, a state of discontent marked by a sense of estrangement, an awareness of excess aloneness.

Solitude is something you choose. Loneliness is imposed on you by others.

We all need periods of solitude, although temperamentally we probably differ in the amount of solitude we need. Some solitude is essential; It gives us time to explore and know ourselves. It is the necessary counterpoint to intimacy, what allows us to have a self worthy of sharing. Solitude gives us a chance to regain perspective. It renews us for the challenges of life. It allows us to get (back) into the position of driving our own lives, rather than having them run by schedules and demands from without.

Solitude restores body and mind. Lonelinesss depletes them.

This short article appears in Psychology Today and it's dead on. Of the many things I have in common with my wife is an ability to spend time alone. There have been times when my wife and daughter have gone to visit a friend out of town and asked me to come along. In every case, I decline. I enjoy the time alone. As I'm sure any parent or spouse can attest, time alone is a bit of a commodity. It's rare. Particularly time alone of any length. Sure, there are times when my wife and daughter are out for the day. But, a whole weekend? More? That's rare.

Don't get me wrong. I LOVE spending time with my family. But as one with many interests, many projects, and a bit on the selfish side, I like having time to myself to do the things I enjoy. It's often not much at all, though. Simply having a quiet house to myself is enough. As the article indicates, it's a recharging . . . a rest from normal day to day routine. I've certainly used the time to accomplish things that would be difficult otherwise. Home improvement projects are one. Plumbing and electrical, where service needs to be disrupted is a good example. Painting is another. There are other projects . . . software tutorials, writing, even shopping with no restrictions can be enjoyed.

My daughter also seems to have this trait. It's very comforting. Again, like us parents, she loves to do things together with mom and dad. But she also loves her own time. She very much gets in to a creative mood and is able to have a lot of fun just doing things by herself. We encouraged it from little on telling her to go play make believe, color, listen to music, whatever, just so she was occupying herself. It ms have worked. She's very much like her daddy in that she like time to herself. Doesn't want to be bothered until she finished. The apple fell right next to the tree with this one.

Someone's lying!

Climate change 'significantly worse' than feared: Al Gore

Climate change is occurring far more rapidly than even the worst predictions of the UN's Nobel Prize-winning scientific panel on climate change, Al Gore said on Thursday.
Recent evidence shows "the climate crisis is significantly worse and unfolding more rapidly than those on the pessimistic side of the IPCC projections had warned us," climate campaigner and former US vice-president Gore said.

There are now forecasts that the North Pole ice caps may disappear entirely during summer months within five years, he told a gathering at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a massive report the size of three phone books on the reality and risks of climate change, its 4th assessment in 18 years.

Global warming is a key theme at this year's meeting of the world's business and political elite in Davos.

OK. Someone is lying. How or where did Gore come up with this? Couldn't have been from the IPCC report which was released LAST YEAR, less than 6 months ago. It doesn't conclude this. If one believes what Gore is telling us then you must believe the IPCC report is wrong. Or, the IPCC report is accurate and Gore is lying.

Which is it?

Of course, it could be that there's so much backlash against the goracle, that he needs to start his fear mongering again.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Three Faces of Twitney

I guess bi-polar isn't crazy enough. The talk now is that Twitney is suffering from a multiple personality disorder, or dissociative identity disorder. There's Twitney, some girl that talks in a british accent, and some girl that acts like a diva. Apparently when in one of her "other self's" she has no recollection of events and that explains why she missed all those darn depositions!

That's all well and good. Except, non of her personalities seem to remember to wear underwear, and the ONLY thing she tends to forget is anything regarding the well being of her children. Starbucks? No problem. Clubs? No problem. Taco Bell? No problem. Nope, just those pesky courts. Hmm.

What I don't understand is, how does this at all benefit her with regard to her children? This can't help. Bi-polar is very treatable. A multiple personality disorder would be much more difficult to diagnose as well as treat. Of course, this is if it's at all true. I get the sense Twitney really doesn't want to bother with her kids. Sad.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Whaddaya mean they lost?

Like a movie that keep you on the edge of your seat, the Packer/Giant game was scripted beautifully. Not favorably for the Packers mind you, but a breath holder non the less.

A great season, a record setting season, an absolutely "no one expected this" season, came to a halt for the Packers after they lost to the Giants in over time, 23 -20. On the cold but not frozen tundra, the Packer couldn't get much offense in gear, and couldn't quite stop the Giants as NY over came mistake after mistake to win the game on a field goal. In fact, the Giants missed two earlier field goals. One that could have given them the win in regulation time. After winning the coin toss, the Packers, again, couldn't get much going. Then, Favre threw a pass meant to go wide but it didn't, and was easily intercepted. A few plays later and the Giants had the win.

Hard to say what went wrong. The Giant defense did a good job, but not a great job. I really think the play calling was bad. Defensively, we couldn't stop them. The defeat could have been worse as the Giants made more than their share of mistakes. I surprised Harris didn't get any help. But, I'm not the coach.

In spite of the loss there's a lot to be proud of. The Packers had an incredible season. They were fun to watch. Favre became a national hero. They have every reason to hold their heads high in defeat.

Packers Giants halftime

Whew! Hard hitting game. I think the Packers are not at full momentum and the Giants are playing their butts off. Which bodes well for us. Should the Pack get to 7 cylinders, I think you'll see them walking away with the game. Right now they'rer at about 5 cylinders. I will say the play calling hasn't been that great. But, we're winning, and we're playing pretty well. Though I have to admit we got a little lucky on a few plays.

Second half should be good!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Searching for Bobby Fischer

REYKJAVIK, Iceland — Bobby Fischer, the reclusive chess genius who became a Cold War hero by dethroning the Soviet world champion in 1972 and later renounced his American citizenship, has died. He was 64.

Fischer had a profound affect on the game of chess. I became very involved in chess as a result of his rise and was a school champion at one point. For that, I have fond memories.

Beyond that, though . . . he hasn't been missed nor likely will be.


As long as it's a baby or a child . . .

Drunken driver gets jail term

Man was drunk, speeding with his baby girl in SUV


Posted: Jan. 17, 2008

Waukesha - For driving drunk with his month-old baby in his sport utility vehicle and roaring past a sheriff's deputy at more than 100 mph, a Milwaukee man will spend 30 days in jail with work release privileges.

Matthew L. Kucharski, 22, was told Thursday by both Assistant District Attorney Michele W. Hulgaard and Waukesha County Circuit Judge Ralph Ramirez just how fortunate he was to come away from his May 13 crime with only a month in jail.

He's fortunate no one - his daughter or the Waukesha County sheriff's deputy who pursued and stopped Kucharski - was killed or injured while he was driving with a blood-alcohol level of 0.138, well above the 0.08 level considered evidence of intoxication, they said.

Kucharski could have been sentenced to 10 years in prison for his conviction for second-degree recklessly endangering safety by racing along I-94 through the City of Pewaukee.

Hulgaard told Ramirez that as the case wound its way through the system, Kucharski and his attorney sought to have the felony charge reduced to a misdemeanor because Kucharski had no criminal record.

But Hulgaard said she would not agree to a lesser charge because of the circumstances.

Hulgaard told Ramirez that as a mother, she was horrified that Kucharski drove drunk and fast with a child in the vehicle, behavior that she said was "just inexcusable."

Kucharski apologized and asked the judge for leniency, saying he did not want to be away in prison and miss his daughter's "first step, first tooth, first word."

"You don't have to worry about me doing something like this again. . . . You'll never see me in your courtroom again," Kucharski said.

According to a criminal complaint, the baby was in a child's car seat in the rear passenger area when Kucharski's vehicle was stopped. Kucharski told the deputy that the girl was his daughter; that he had just had a quarrel with her mother, his fiancée; and that he was hurrying to a relative's house.

Although Kucharski is a first-time offender and understands the gravity of his offense, Ramirez said, jail time must be imposed "to make sure you never do this again" and to send a message to others that there will be a loss of freedom for such crimes.

"You endangered the thing most precious to you in your life. There's no doubt . . . that you get how serious this was, how close you came to hurting your child," Ramirez said.

The headline is very misleading. Yes, this dirtbag got jail time. But it's akin to standing in the corner for 15 minutes, or going to bed without any dessert. One month? No, he doesn't deserve 10 years. He probably doesn't deserve 5 years. But 30 days? What's particularly funny (not ha ha) about the story is that is that Ramirez makes himself sound like he's being really hard on the guy. What a load of crap. This guy should have received about a year or two. That would send a message.

I don't mea to make light but I swear this guy would have gotten more time if he'd of had his dog in the car with him.

Sad. Sad. Sad.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

NFL Playoffs 4

OK. Still only 50% for the playoffs. Although I've been correct on some insight. Oh well. Anyway, this weekend seems pretty clear cut to me. We have mirror situations in the AFC as in the NFC . . . the under dogs are all banged up and likely have no chance of winning. I see the Pats rolling over the Chargers, and I see the Packers walking away with a victory. Rolling and walking. I think it will be easy wins for both teams.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Voter Fraud

I have to admit, I'm not fully in favor of a voter ID. I tend to agree that there isn't much evidence that there's "widespread" fraud, and an ID requirement wouldn't necessarily fix all of the problems. I don't buy in to the whole "disenfranchise" thing either, though. I feel if we were to implement a voter ID (or federal ID) people would just do it. All that said, I do support efforts to maintain voter integrity and to keep voting honest and fair. I have wanted to do away with same day registration and have emailed as many politicians as I could about it. From the JS:

Same-day registration. Republicans pushed through an Assembly committee a bill that would end Wisconsin's decades-old practice of letting voters register on Election Day, saying it invites fraud. One out of every five voters in the November 2006 election registered on that day, records show.

The party-line, 5-3 vote of the Assembly Elections and Constitutional Law committee sent the bill to the full Assembly for debate. Decker said the Senate won't take up the measure because the Democrats who control that house believe it would create barriers that would discourage people from voting.

"Wisconsin's high rate of voter participation is something we should be proud of and other states should be following our model," he said.

The bill would require voters to prove their residency and register 14 days before a general election.

Republican Rep. Robin Vos of Racine said the current system invites fraud, because it allows anyone to register to vote on Election Day by providing nothing more than a utility bill.

This just makes sense. In fact, one can make the argument that same day registration causes as much disenfranchisement as does voter ID. I've ben in lines when people in front of me have registered. It takes time and causes long waits. Plus, this seems to be where and when the bulk of fraud has occurred. By having people register in advance, it makes the voting list accurate, makes the process go faster, and eliminates the type of fraud we've seen in the past several elections.

Don't get me wrong. I'd support a voter ID bill. But this is a better and an attainable first step.

The Island of Dr. Moreau

Proposed Law Muddles 'What It Means to Be Human'
By Kevin McCandless Correspondent
January 16, 2008

London ( - A heated vote in the House of Lords has cleared the way for the creation of mixed human-animal embryos, a move that strikes at the heart of human dignity, opponents say.

Under the Human Fertilization and Embryology Bill, which is now moving through Parliament, scientists would be allowed to combine genetic material from human and animal cells for research purposes.

Supporters of the bill say that human DNA would be transplanted into animal egg cells, after which stem cells would be harvested for research.

The law would allow interspecies embryos to live only for fourteen days, and licensed researchers would be strictly prohibited from implanting them in human wombs.

On Tuesday, echoing scientists from across Britain, peers in favor of the bill said that it was needed to advance vital research into areas such as spinal injuries, because human eggs are in relatively short supply.

However, opponents in the House of Lords argued that the law tampered with what it fundamentally means to be human.

"It crosses the line between human and animal," Lord David Alton said. "It's disturbing what it means to be human."

Though scientists say there is no intention to create true hybrids (embryos that are half human and half animal), a spokesman for the Christian Medical Fellowship said Wednesday that the bill gave researchers carte blanche to do whatever they wanted.

Spokesman Andrew Fergusson said that while many supporters of the bill genuinely wanted to help humanity, he said a minority had simply lost their moral bearings. "They want to do this because it's there," he said. "There is no God and there are no moral standards."

Ultimately, the lords voted 268 to 96 to defeat an amendment that would have prohibited the creation of animal-human embryos.

Several peers also complained that they were confused by the scientific basis behind much of the bill, which led Lord Chris Patten to worry about how much the general public understands the issue.

"If the average peer in the street can't understand what's going on, what chance does the average person in the street have?" he asked.

Late on Tuesday, the lords also voted down an amendment to the bill prohibiting the creation of so-called "savior siblings" in Britain -- genetically designed babies that have been specifically created to provide bone marrow or tissue donations for sick older brothers or sisters.

Though the act specifically prohibits savior siblings from donating body organs, opponents said this would in effect be creating babies to act as "medicine cabinets."

The House of Lords is scheduled to finish debating the bill on Monday, at which time it is expected to consider allowing in-vitro fertilization to lesbian couples in situations where no man would be present to help raise any future child.

Activists say this would allow same-sex couples to enjoy the full fruits of family life, but advocates for traditional families charge this would undermine the very concept of fatherhood.

At the same time, the House of Lords reportedly will consider rolling back the right of mothers to abort babies with disabilities.

Under current British law, babies that would be born severely handicapped can be aborted right up to the point of birth. The proposed amendment would reduce this to the 24th week of pregnancy, which is the current limit for most abortions.

Josephine Quintavalle, founder of Comment on Reproductive Ethics, a non-profit group, said Wednesday that the fight over abortion will become central once the bill moves to the House of Commons next month.

Before the act officially becomes law, observers predict that both sides will try to amend it, to either relax abortion regulations or to push back the time limit for most legal terminations to 20 weeks.

I thought ESCR had it's ethical issues, but this is downright scary. I'm sorry. I simply don't trust people enough to be let alone with this sort of . . . power. I can only lead to bad things before it lead to good. Not to mention that like ESCR there's little hope of this actually working, which makes me wonder, why pursue it at all?

The who;e "Savior baby" issue is equally appalling. I can't imagine such a disregard for individual life that anyone would consider doing this. Amazing.

See Spot. Translate what Spot is saying.

Scientists develop computer that can 'translate' a dog's bark

What would a dog say if it could talk? "Stranger", "fight", "walk", "alone", "ball" and "play", according to scientists who have developed a computer programme to translate dog barks.
The special programme analysed more than 6,000 barks from 14 Hungarian sheepdogs in six different situations.

In a series of tests the team of scientists, from Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary led by Csaba Molnár, discovered that a computer could recognise whether a dog was in a stranger, fight, walk, alone, ball or play scenario.

The barks were tape recorded and then digitized on a computer, which used software to study their differences.

The computer correctly identified the different situations 43 per cent of the time. Although it was not a high success rate it was far better than human recognition, the researchers said.

The computer was most accurate in identifying the "fight" and "stranger" contexts, and was least effective at matching the "play" bark.

The results appear in the journal Animal Cognition, and suggest that dogs have acoustically different barks depending on their emotional state.

The researchers also performed a second test, in which the computer identified individual dogs by their bark.

The software correctly identified the dogs 52 per cent of the time, again much better than the human result, suggesting there are individual differences in barks even though humans are not able to recognize them.

The team also plans to compare the barks of different breeds to discover what they have in common.

And here I thought we had the rights to idiotic research. The first thing that comes to mind are babies. Yep. Babies. They can't talk. But we know they communicate. And any parent worth their pride understands what their baby wants through that communication. I know dog owners who say the same thing about their dogs. While on the surface this is kind of interesting, I simply don't think we need a team of researchers telling us what most of us already know.

MacWorld 2008

Every year Apple makes a number of announcements at Macworld, an annual convention held in San Francisco. There's usually a good amount of anticipation as, as we've seen, Apple makes some pretty cool products. I'm an Apple fan. A huge fan . . . and user. You couldn't pay me to own a Windows machine. But, this isn't about bashing or praising, it's about the Macworld announcements.

This year the rumor mill was all about a sub-notebook similar to what Sony offers. Well, Apple delivered. Sort of. Rather than making it small, they made it incredibly thin. Less than an inch. It's has a full sized keyboard and a 13" screen. No question it's a marvel. But, yawn. I was really hoping for something smaller than a 12" notebook. But, that's me.

They also announced some extra features for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Cool stuff, really. Go to the Apple website and check it out. Once again, for me . . . yawn. Make the iPod Touch at least 30GB and I'll get excited.

The one thing they did announce that I liked, Time Capsule. Essentially, it a hard drive, wireless router, and back up system all built in to one unit that resembles a Mac Mini. There's a 500GB model that sells for $299 and a 1TB model that sells for $499. Considering what you're getting, that's incredible! It also has a USB port so you can attach a printer and make that wirelessly network-able, too. This I like. I will seriously consider getting one.

As a working pro, however, Macworld is always a bit of a disappointment as there's virtually never announcements made for the pro industry. That's often reserved for NAB in April, an industry convention. On the plus side, there's more to look forward to other than just Macworld.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

If you look up "dirtbag" on Wikipedia . . .

Maplewood man accused of leaving child in car while at strip club

MAPLEWOOD, Minn. (AP) - Prosecutors in Wisconsin were considering charges Friday after a Maplewood man was arrested for allegedly leaving his 18-month-old son in a van outside a strip club for several hours Wednesday night.

The police report filed in the case said that while the 45-year-old man lounged inside the Cajun Club in St. Croix County in Wisconsin, temperatures outside dipped into the low 20s.

A customer entering the hilltop club overlooking Stillwater about 1 a.m. Thursday told staff there was a baby crying in a van outside, said manager Tess Ross. She went to look.

"I was shocked," she said. "I couldn't believe it was a little baby. I felt so bad."

After checking to see that the doors of the van were locked, she called 911.

The club made an announcement over its speaker system seeking the van's owner and the staff approached each customer. Eventually, Ross said a man came forward and she told him to check his van. Deputies were waiting outside.

St. Croix County Sheriff Dennis Hillstead said patrons told deputies the van had been parked outside the club since at least 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, which meant the child was strapped into his car seat for more than three hours.

What a dirtbag. I can't stand when this crap happens. It gets better, though.

Hillstead said the little boy was found wearing socks, a jacket, and sweat pants. He was taken to a hospital in Hudson, Wis., where he was treated for exposure and frostbite. By Friday, the boy was released into his mother's custody.

"He's just lucky it wasn't 10 degrees colder, or that baby could have been in serious trouble," Hillstead said.

The man was arrested on suspicion of neglect of a child, a misdemeanor, and booked into the county jail. The man's wife posted $250 bail early Thursday.

"He had told his wife he was going to the grocery store for milk, but went directly to the Cajun Club," Hillstead said, adding, "When he failed to return home, his wife had called Maplewood police to report him missing."

So he lied to his wife about where he was going. What's really baffling is if he knew he was going to the strip club, why would he take his child? In fact, even if he was just going to the store for a simple milk pick up, why take the child out in to the cold? Finally, why would his wife post bail?!?!

Cathy Halverson, office manager for the St. Croix County Attorney's office, said Friday the case was still under review and a charging decision would be made later.

The couple's neighbor, Donna Gervais of Maplewood, said she baby-sat the couple's older child while the man's wife went to bail him out of jail. Gervais said the couple have lived in the home since last summer, and there have never been any problems.

"They are good people. They're very good with their kids," Gervais said. "I don't see anything wrong going on over there."

She said she was there when he got home early Thursday. "He was very upset and very near to tears," Gervais said. "All he said is he messed up, and he's so sorry for what happened."

Well, I hope he seriously charged. This kind of behavior is inexcusable. The whole story sounds . . . off. That child is VERY lucky, though not very lucky to have such parents.

Monday, January 14, 2008

NFL Playoffs 3

Wow. There's a lot to comment on. Let me try and be as concise as I can be.

Jaguars at Patriots. I was actually a bit surprised. The Pats had to work for this and Garrard did extremely well. One more completed pass and who knows? I was actually a little surprised at the Pats defense. They stayed tough right to the very end. To sign of petering out in spite of there being a few "old" guys on the squad.

Chargers at Colts. I've been saying rather frequently . . . if you thinks it's tough being a Packer fan . . . Wow. How did they lose this game? With Peters and Ladanian both out it should have been easy! I really think the Colts got of of their rhythm and started making bad calls. I don't give much hope to the Chargers beating the Pats.

Giants at Cowboys. I let out a pretty good Wooo! at the end of this game. I can only imagine what the taverns in Green Bay were like. I'm sure aspirin use is at an all time high today. Well, I got the feeling the Boys thought they were just going to walk through this game. What they didn't count on was the Giants fighting for it right until the very end. Bad strategy. As a long time Cowboy disliker, I LOVED it! TO crying, Romo acting like a baby, the look on Jones' face . . . what a bunch of sore LOSERS.


TO can take his popcorn, his sharpie, his behavior, and his tears and shove them up his butt. Romo can take Jessica and sail off to parts unknown and do all of us a favor and don't come back. Go have babies somewhere. If you have to return, leave Jessica behind. Yeah, it would have been sweeter to have had the Packers beat them, but I'm OK with this.

Seahawks at Packers. My prediction was 35 to 17. Unlike many others I didn't think it would be a close game. I didn't think it would be a comeback from 14 down in the first quarter game, either. Anyway, what an amazing game. Grant, Favre, and the rest of the team and coaches really hung in after the initial deficit. I can't say I was worried. In fact, I told my wife that it was a good thing. If the Packers had any thought at all of this being an easy game, that thought left very quickly. The rest, you saw. Hasslebeck and the rest of the team folded like an accordion. We manhandled them. We out finessed them. We were faster, stronger, smarter, and better.

This sets up the Chargers at the Patriots and the Giants at the Packers. I just don't see the Pats or the Pack losing. First, they're better teams than who they're playing. Second, the underdogs are all beat up. Third, home games for the favored.

If this holds true then that means . . .

The Packers and the Patriots in Arizona for the Superbowl! This is the worst cast scenario for the Pats. Aside from many football fans just hating the Pats, their coach, and Tom Brady, Arizona is a Green Bay state. the stadium will be 90% Packer fans. It will be like a home game!

But, we gotta get there first.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Seattle at Green Bay

I told my wife before the game, 35 to 17 Packers. I thought it would be close at first but that the Pack would walk away with it.
When they went down by 14, I told my wife not to worry. Now they would play seriously.

Wow. It's the start of the 4th quarter. Of all the things amazing about this game, Kerney's name hasn't been mentioned once. Grant has MORE than made up for his early fumbles, and the Packers are winning walking away.

What an amazing game. I'm sure Seattle can blame the weather some but as the Packer's did in Chicago last time they played, the Packers are playing in the same conditions.

I'll have more after the game.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Smile! You're on red light camera!

Madison - Say cheese, red-light runners.

State lawmakers are considering a bill to let Wisconsin municipalities use cameras to crack down on the thousands of roadway renegades who plow through intersections. They'd get tickets in the mail.

Cameras would capture more violators and send a signal to lead-foots to slow down, saving money on injuries and accident responses, the bill's supporters told the Assembly Urban and Local Affairs Committee during a brief hearing Tuesday.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans see someone running a red light more than once a week, according to a survey cited in a 2006 Federal Highway Administration report on red-light cameras.

I'm on the fence with this. Reading what I could find it seems not all the "studies" involving reduced accidents where cameras are used aren't entirely accurate. Side impacts did decrease. But rear end impacts went up some. Over all safety did improve as fewer people sustained major injuries and traffic was slowed. In some cities, however, people noticed traffic lights being tampered with thus accussed the city of "trapping" people by shortening the duration of yellow lights. More tickets were issued and suddenly the cameras became more about revenue than safety.

That's the problem. I wouldn't trust government to implement this properly. But, let's be honest, drivers are worse than ever these days. The police have too much other work to do to worry about many traffic violations. We just can't afford to have a squad posted anytime we please. So, in that sense, I'm all for the cameras. Efforts to make our roads safer are always welcome. But, for me, there'd have to be some concessions. One, reduce the cost of parking violations. It's ridiculous how high it is. Way to make downtown Milwaukee more attractive. Two, reduce the cost of parking stickers. I live here, bought a house, and pay property taxes. You want to charge me for parking on the street? Greedy and goofy.

One benefit, this is something that could virtually pay for itself since it would generate revenue. Of course, that shouldn't be the reason for having them installed, but you can't ignore that point.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Show Must Go On!

Academy Awards organisers expressed confidence on Tuesday that this year's Oscars show would go ahead as planned, as Hollywood digested the bombshell cancellation of the Golden Globes.
Bruce Davis, the executive director of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, told AFP that Oscars organisers were hopeful of reaching a deal with writers that would allow the highlight of awards season.

"At this stage we are still making our plan as normal," Davis said.

The dispute between writers and producers claimed its highest profile casualty on Monday when it was confirmed that Sunday's Golden Globes ceremony had been scrapped and replaced with a press conference.

The decision came after Hollywood's actors union, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), announced last week that stars would not cross picket lines surrounding the show set erected by the Writers Guild of America (WGA).

I'll say this about the Globes, they keep the time to a minimum and don't televise every stinkin' award there is to award. Neither do the Oscars, but they do televise awards no one really cares about. They should take the Globes template and apply it to their own show.

Again, other than seeing the babes and fashions, and listening to the stupid/funny remarks made during the acceptance, I could care less.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

The People's Choice Awards

Am I glad I DVR'd this show! Not so I could play back the hot bods, listen to some great performances, or replay the funny moments. Oh no. It's strictly so I could fast forward through the ENTIRE show. There was no audience! No presenters, no accepters, no performers, no nothing! I heard that the Golden Globes might be audience-less but I wasn't aware the PCA was going to be . . . a newscast. Wow. How incredibly boring . . . and stupid. I like the Queen and all but to watch and listen to her jump up and down and scream when she read a winner . . . laaaame. The winners acceptance speeches were videotaped and played back. One funny moment . . . Joaquin Phoenix's acceptance speech for leading man. He did it via cue cards he showed to the . . . viewers (writer strike thing) and wrapped up by asking "what's wrong with you people?". I thought it seemed fairly humble and funny.

No fashion review as there was no one there. Queen Latifah looked nice. Maria Menunous looked hot during a remote she did for some hair product. That's about it. I can't even tell you who won as I zoomed through the whole show stopping only when I see any real live person.

I suppose they did the best they could with the show. But considering there was no audience or other active participants, they should made it an hour instead of two. They play a lot of old clips from past shows. Yawn.

If the Golden Globes is really going to be like this . . . I'll skip it.

Monday, January 07, 2008

NFL Playoffs 2

2 of 4 this past weekend. Not good. Here are my picks for the coming weekend:

Jaguars at Patriots. I think all the picks are hard. We've certainly got the best of the NFL represented. If there's a defense that can cause Brady some trouble, the Jags have it. They haven't played each other this year so not much is known about the Jags by the Pats. But, I don't think Garrard has what it takes to win. Patriots.

Chargers at Colts. The Chargers are one of those teams like the Steeler and Giants, you never know who is going to show up. It took a bit but the finally got it together against the Titans. I don't think they can start so slow and expect to win against the Colts. Colts.

Giants at Cowboys. Like the Jags and Pats, I think the Giants have a defense that could cause trouble for Romo. Not sure about the health of TO and Glenn although they're saying they will start. The Cowpies defeated the Giants twice this year although they allowed the Giants to score 35 points in one game. The Cowboy defense sucks. The Giants are bi-polar. If TO plays, the Cowboys.

Seahawks at the Packers. The Seahawk defense is good. But Favre is great. The Seahawk offense is banged up including Matt. Our defense is healthy. Holmgren is cursed . . . and can be a mental case at times. At home, Packers win easy.

Golden Globes in Jeopardy!

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. and NBC engaged in eleventh-hour sessions Sunday to try to save the boycott-stricken Golden Globes, with NBC appearing to be seriously considering pulling the telecast as a result of the Hollywood writers strike.

The HFPA, whose 100-odd members organize the ceremony, is pushing NBC to pull the plug on the broadcast because that will prompt the Writers Guild of America to lift its pickets and enable stars to attend the January 13 event. On Friday, the Screen Actors Guild said its members would not cross picket lines to attend.

The whole article here:

No Golden Globes?


Other than seeing the babes and their attire, this is the most boring of the award shows. The People's Choice awards come pretty close but the Globes definitely have the more "are you kidding me?" moments to it.

Drinking does what?

The Science of Toga Parties
Field work can be hell. But thanks to the dogged researchers who attended 66 college parties in Southern California, now at last it can revealed:

Playing drinking games at a party leads to increased levels of alcohol in the bloodstream.

Fortunately, that wasn’t the only result of the investigation reported in the January issue of January issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. The researchers say their fieldwork, which involved studying more than 1,300 people at parties, is an improvement over past studies that relied on people’s recollections of getting hammered. These researchers made observations at the parties and brought along equipment to test students’ blood-alcohol concentrations (BrACs). One of the authors, J.D. Clapp of San Diego State University, summarizes the findings:

Both individual behavior and the environment matter when it comes to student-drinking behavior. At the individual level, playing drinking games and having a history of binge drinking predicted higher BrACs. At the environmental level, having a lot of intoxicated people at a party and themed events predicted higher BrACs. One of the more interesting findings was that young women drank more heavily than males at themed events. It is rare to find any situation where women drink more than men, and these events tended to have sexualized themes and costumes.

The researchers say they’re planning to do further investigations of themed parties, and I hope they’ll consider letting a journalist accompany them (if necessary, I would go in costume). I don’t know why women would drink more at themed parties, but I do have a hypothesis: Could it be a coping mechanism for dealing with the sight of guys like John Belushi dressed in togas?

Someone was actually given taxpayer money for this.


I think I'll try to obtain a grant to see what goes on at the Drinking Right parties.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Jaguars at Steelers

2 minutes left. What the heck happened to the 18 point lead the Jags had? Can't say as I care who wins but I did pick the Jags. Credit the Steeler defense and Big Ben for a good game. Now I gotta watch!

Washington at Seattle Halftime

Geez. Washington needs to put together a drive. Seattle isn't doing much better but they've had one or two plays that have made the difference so far. Not liking the play calling by Washington but I have to give credit to the Seattle defense.

Crazy is as crazy does

So Britany was carted off after refusing to give up her child in somewhat of a stand off at her home the other night. She was put under a 72 hour watch. When that's done, a hospital can hold someone against their will. As is apparently the case as recent reports have the skanky one throwing fits. Her kids have been yanked completely pending further hearings and, I'm sure, evaluation of her condition. Reports are already coming in that she's bi-polar, that her behavior wasn't a result of drugs, alcohol, or a mix. And already people are excusing her behavior to a mental disease.

Not so fast.

First, these are very early reports. We really don't know anything yet. Second, we know she drank, did drugs, acted like a skank, acted terribly as a parent, acted irresponsibly, and looked for attention. Bi-polar wouldn't explain everything. Also, she seemed to find the clubs just fine, the parties, the Starbucks, the Taco Bells . . . it's only the courthouse she couldn't find, her appearance times she couldn't keep, and her work commitments she couldn't make. Hmmm. Pretty convenient if you ask me.

Now if it turns out that she really is bi-polar . . . ok, let's see how she manages her care. Having gone through depression myself I can tell you there needs to be a huge personal commitment to getting yourself better. Look at Hohan. She's wanting her cake and to eat it too. Doesn't work that way. I see her crashing sometime soon. As for Britany, another thing we know about her is that she's not too bright and apparently doesn't want anyone's help. Trying to imagine her following a treatment plan is like trying to watch a lion after throwing a sheep in his cage and telling him: "No. You can't eat that".

I don't want to sound un-sympathetic to any degree. But for many people, not just celebrities, deciding one is bi-polar, or is an alcoholic, is too often another way to escape personal responsibility.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Just Say No

Reports are a little spotty as to whether Zoey 101 will be on or off the air. According to one MTV rep, no changes are planned and this season will finish out and the next season will air.

I know teens get pregnant. That doesn't mean I have to like it or endorse it. I expect parents to act and do what they can to educate their children on sex and pregnancy. To me, allowing Zoey 101 to continue is almost a reward. Nick doesn't have a contact but the parent company, Viacom, does. Here it is:

I urge everyone to let them know your opinion.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

NFL Playoffs

Sad to see the season come to an end, but the playoffs are always an exciting time. Here are some predictions:

For the wild card weekend:

Jacksonville Jaguars defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers
San Diego Chargers beat the Tennessee Titans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeat the New york Giants
Washington Redskins defeat the Seattle Seahawks

If this holds true, the Packers would play the Buccaneers in Green Bay.
Washington would go to Dallas (again) to beat the Cowboys. Funny how teams
match up. Should the Packers defeat the Bucs (they will) and should the Redskins
beat the Cowboys again, they would come to Green Bay for the NFC Championship.

Again, we could see the Packers in the Superbowl!

But, I'm not predicting, yet!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Can we keep the skanks to a minimum?

There's not much to watch on MTV these days. They've joined the ranks of a few other networks offering some sort of degenerative show with what's bound to become attention whore fodder for the entertainment news. Cast members with no observable skills other than to look good. "No thank you please . . . no thought provoking conversations now. With no one to feed you lines it will be god awful at best. No just stand there and look good."

Of the offerings narrow casted to the brain damaged is a little gem called A shot of love with Tila Tequila . . . or something like that. Wherein another in a endless stream of vacant skanks whores herself on her Myspace page to get recognized and MTV (of course) does. Gives her her own show. Talent is optional as has been the case lately with MTV.

Well, that's all fine and good. These people and shows are a dime a dozen now and since MTV finds it necessary to air a good percentage of these idiotic shows, with one fell swoop and turn of the dial I can ignore most of what offends what's left of a desire to have some depth to what I watch.

So why would a supposed noted journalist actually waste time and space with a review of her show? Good question. These people are generally waaaaaay over exposed for no good reason to begin with. Well, Joanne Weintraub of the Journal Sentinel for some odd reason felt it necessry journalism:

"Formerly famous for getting more MySpace page views than anyone else on the planet, Tila Nguyen, as her parents named her 27 years ago, has been a music-video star, a Stuff and Maxim cover model and a Playboy Cyber Girl.

When To Watch
What: "A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila"
When: noon Sunday, repeated noon Tuesday (marathon); 9 p.m. Tuesday (season finale)
Where: MTV

But the bisexual bachelorette is hardly just another pretty face attached to a smokin' bod.

"There's a million hot naked chicks on the Internet," she told Time magazine last year. "There's a difference between those girls and me. Those chicks don't talk back to you."

Tila does, though. And she'll talk to - and lock lips with - love seekers of either gender.

"A Shot at Love" gives 32 singles of both sexes the chance to compete for Tila's hand, not to mention all the other parts of her.

Along the way it proves, in case it still needs proving, that neither gender has a monopoly on silliness, nastiness or raving exhibitionism.

How does Tila pursue her quest for Mr. or Ms. Right?

Same way you or I would: by asking 32 strangers to roll around in melted chocolate and sleep together in a giant bed - not right after the chocolate part, fortunately - and by giving lap dances to members of their family."

It should be noted that this article appeared 12/12/07 so this editorial is rather late. None the less, shame on Joanne. This kind of show which is part of the skankifying of both pop culture and TV is just not something worthy of serious journalism. I never thought much of Joanne's recommendations for TV. I think less of her now.