Plus, it may have something to do with the fact that my first and middle names said together are a homonym of poultry (Paul Troy).
Sunday, March 30, 2008
But yesterday's post was definitely more heady than the norm for me and today's post is just as "bricky"
To that end, today's post is about taking another life; more specifically taking the lives of those members of society that have proven they are no longer a viable part of our communities, no not Jerry Springer & Rikki Lake, I am talking about inmates who are sentenced to life in prison or are sitting on death row. I am talking about the people that are proven guilty with unmistakable proof (e.g. DNA) of heinous crimes.
Those of you that know me, you know that I am very liberal. But on this topic...not so much. I feel that these individuals should have their organs harvested and donated to those that are waiting for organs. Then we pull the plug and let the inmates go to sleep forever. I'm sorry if this sounds cruel but it makes more sense than paying to house, feed, and care for these people just waiting for them to die anyway. Also, if you had a choice to see them perish or to see innocent people in need of kidneys, livers, lungs, etc., well, it's a no brainer, is it?
Saturday, March 29, 2008
To stereotype. It has a such negative connotation. Well, I am here to make the point that it's not inherently a bad practice. Yes, it can cause people to misjudge others but what is the cost of not using stereotypes?
Let's hypothesize for a moment. In this hypothetical situation, you are a female (okay, this is easier for some of you to own it than others) and you are driving down a dark lonely country road. Up ahead you see a tall figure walking along the side of the road dressed in a dark trench coat. In one hand he is carrying a long silvery object and he is using the other to hitch a ride. Do you stop to pick him up? Okay folks, the resounding hell no was quite deafening.
What if I were to tell you that this man wasn't wearing a trench coat but rather he was wearing rain gear and the silvery object in his hand was a turbine blade for his plow that had broken down several hundred yards off of the side of the road in the 40 acres of farmland that he owns on both sides of this road that you are on? And you wouldn't know any of this because you just drove on by. And quite frankly, I don't blame you because he also looked like he could have been a homicidal maniac!
As grade schoolers, we were all taught the processes of categorization and inductive reasoning. If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and it quacks like a duck, well then, your science teacher will tell you, it must be a duck. Of course, it could be a platypus.
In trying to ascertain the difference between categorization & inductive reasoning versus stereotyping, I came across this interesting commentary by Steven J. Sherman of Indiana University on an article written on the subject by Robin Fox. Does it answer the question? Hell no, but it let's me know that it is being pondered by greater minds than mine.
So I ask you, is it wrong to stereotype?
Friday, March 28, 2008
- "Dead", by They Might Be Giants. Fred likes these guys. He has good taste.
- "Guantanamera", artist unknown. Or, as I used to sing it the first Christmas that I lived in Miami: One ton tomato!
- "Mercy Street" by Peter Gabriel. Another good pick, Mr. Fred.
- "Dear Prudence", covered by Dana Fuchs & Jim Sturgess from the "Across the Universe" soundtrack. A very, very nice version. I know it would be sacrilegious to say that anyone can do it better than the idyllic 4, so....I won't say it.
- "Rapid Roy", by Jim Croce. Gritty & dirty and oh so good. One of the great ones who died well before his time.
- "Something", by The Beatles. Maybe their collective spirit was offended by my earlier comment and forced Fred to play them? Freaky.
- "Pancho and Lefty" by Willie Nelson. Okay, this song starts out way too poppy for Willie. I had to look at Fred twice. You don't hear a wailing guitar until a minute into it.
- "Rock 'N Me" by Steve Miller Band. Another classic.
- "Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans?" by Louis Armstrong. Unfortunately, thousands do.
- "Movin' On" by Bad Company. Nice finish to a nice list.
My favorite is # 4. Fellow bloggers (and guests), which was your favorite? Please leave a comment!
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Our oldest son, the 3 year old, was sitting on the floor playing quietly when another boy who was spinning around accidentally head butted our son in the mouth. Maria, the head Daycare person, said that his teeth were bleeding and that I should take him to the dentist. I assured her that I would be right there.
Now, comes time for the second call. I had to call Mrs. Pheasantly and tell her what happened. I think it's important to enter a side note at this point in the story, one to all the other dads out there. When calling your wife to tell them something has happened to one of their offspring, choose your words very carefully.
scene: her phone rings
Her: Hi Honey. What's up?
Me: I got a call from daycare.
Her: Oh, what happened?
Me: There's been an accident. Wesley has been hit in the face. I am going to need Dr. Krugman's phone number.
This is the point in the conversation where Mrs. Pheasantly envisions our oldest sprawled out on the floor gurgling blood staring in a daze at some of his teeth laying next to him.
Yeah. I could have phrased that a little better.
So, after I calm her down (I've arrived at the daycare by this point), I reassure that it doesn't look that bad and I take him to our family dentist, Dr. Krugman.
The end of the story is that Wesley did not suffer any major damage to his teeth, either his baby teeth or his adult teeth which are already formed. One of the baby teeth may turn black but we'd only have to live with that until it gets replaced with the adult tooth.
It could have been a lot worse. Just ask my wife.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Dakota Abbott, 16, edged Samantha Phillips, 17, to become Miss Outdoors 2008 in February in Maryland's Eastern Shore region's annual beauty-contest-and-muskrat-skinning festival.
The two were the only beauty contestants (out of eight) who entered both competitions. Abbott won her skinning division, but while she sang a song for the judges, Phillips won the talent trophy by skinning a muskrat on stage. "I'll be honest," she said to a Washington Post reporter. "I can't sing. I can't dance, and I don't play any musical instruments." But she took her 4-inch blade, sticking it just above the tail, and sliced. "You want to take your knuckles and separate the meat from the hide, just like this," she told the judges, with her hand inside the muskrat (as one of the judges recoiled in shock).
Until next time, enjoy your Wacky Wednesday!
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
My favorite memories are the ones that pop up out of nowhere. You're sittin' there at light waiting for it to change when you are suddenly transported back to Driver's Ed class. Oh, wait, that's not you, that's me. Okay, here is my memory:
So as I said, I was in Driver's Ed class. They were selecting who in the class was going to get to drive with the Coach / Driver's Ed instructor - side thought here: Who else went to a school where the Driver's Ed teacher wasn't their sole job at the school? Okay, back to the memory...so 3 kids get picked to take turns behind the wheel for the class period while the rest of us watch a safety video under the supervision of the Science teacher. They head out, the films starts, 45 minutes later the film ends, the period is over and no word from the 3 kids & the coach. We found out the next the day that the coach had fallen asleep and the kid that was driving at the time kept driving. When the coach woke up, they were in the next county.
Oh, the light's green, gotta go.
(Note to self: Must stop blogging while commuting)
Monday, March 24, 2008
So, this leads me to two questions:
1) How many of you cringed at my use of mixed tenses? Ha, you should see my messed up elevenses!
2) Which is your current all time-favorite blog entry? And no, you can't select one of your own! Post about it and let me know in my comments.
Sorry, no trips to the islands or even a toaster. Your prize is my genuine appreciation for taking the time to visit! I hope it'll do.
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Coming home from the movie that night I had an epiphany. The only thing that was keeping me from getting all the ladies was the fact that I didn't speak French. If I knew French, then I would find a girl, impress her, and make her mine. So that was that. I was already planning on going to college for my AA degree and decided that for an elective I would take Beginner's French. I think it's important to note, and you may have heard this before, Miami does not have a large French speaking population. Spanish, yet another language that had evaded me, was (and is) quite common 'round these parts. So, do I take French or Spanish? As my dad pointed out when he was helping me choose, by using logic, one would naturally conclude that if they are going to use an elective course for a foreign language, it should be one that is spoken commonly where they live. So, naturally, I signed up for French class.
It was an accelerated night class and at the end of the course I got a 'C'. I still couldn't ask a girl out in French, nor would I be able to ask where the facilities were if she had agreed to said date. I met with my advisor who advised (funny how they do that) I should take something else for the next semester, like, maybe Spanish. She listed out all of the pros and cons and made a very valid argument. So, naturally, I enrolled in Beginner's French II.
I was really struggling. Or, as they would say in French, "La souris est aveugle." But lucky for me, there was a girl in this class who seemed very sharp and was picking up French quite easily. I figured I'd ask her to help me with the lessons. It didn't hurt that she was very cute. She agreed to help me but it was hard for me to keep my attention on the material. Did I mention she was cute? Well, at the end of the course my grade was no longer a 'C'. It was a 'D'. But I did manage to meet a cute girl. She even agreed to go out with me. We continued to date and seventeen years later she'd be standing here reading over my shoulder if she wasn't in our bed with a cold and 101 degree fever.
So, did I learn French? No. But did my plan work? You betcha!
And in case you were wondering, "Par le vous Francais" is French for "How I met my wife".
Saturday, March 22, 2008
Matt: Where are the fish?
Me (from the other room): They're imaginary, Matt. Just go with it.
3 Year Old: No, Dad! They're pretendy.
At 8:01 Am the 3 year old announced from the other side of the house: "Daddy! MY MUUUUUUUUUUSIC IS ON! WE CAN PLAY NOW!" So with the baby in one arm, the Tivo on pause, and a toy fishing rod in the other hand, I proceeded to catch (and release) imaginary fish of ever color that you could, well, imagine. Then around 8:30 Mrs. Pheasantly comes out in her work out clothes to feed the baby before heading off to a step class with a good friend of ours.
Two...more...hours...me and the boys. So we watched some Peter Pan, and we acted out a few of the scenes as they transpire, I fed the baby, and then we headed out to buy a really cool piggy bank for the 3 year old and play at a playground.
At 11:30 I get home with boys to meet Mrs. Pheasantly who thanks me profusely for watching the kids early so she could sleep. I say that it's no problem. We play with the kids a bit and at around 1 pm, I say that I need a break and that I am going to go out for a quick lunch and to take a break from the boys. She says no problem and I am off.
I am not gone for more than 10 minutes when I am munching on some buffalo chicken tenders while I see a little boy nuzzling with his dad. And then: poof! I miss my boys. So I scarf down my lunch, grab a gallon of milk from the store, and hurry home to give both my boys a great big hug! I am such a sap!
Friday, March 21, 2008
PS: As much as you might think otherwise, tweasers are not very helpful in this procedure; just some food for thought.
1. "Freedom", by Blues Traveler - I like their sound well enough, but I don't get/comprehend the lyrics of this track.
2. "Helter Skelter", by U2. - Nice tribute to the boys, boys.
3. "The Long & Winding Road", by, well, the boys (that would be the Beatles for the youngins' out there). Fred, you're freakin' me out a little.
4. "Neon" by John Mayer. Not my favorite Mayer song, any guesses as to which one is?
5. "Heaven" by John Legend. First John Popper, then Lennon, then Mayer, now Legend. Fred, are you bucking for a name change?
6. "I Won't Hold You Back", by Toto
7. "In The Wee Small Hours of The Morning", by Frank Sinatra. Yawwwwwwwwwwwwwwn.
8. "Amazing", by Aerosmith. Okay, so this group is only in Fred's repertoire because of Mrs. Pheasantly, but this song isn't half bad.
9. "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp", by Led Zeppelin. Yehaw!
10. "You Are", by Lionel Richie. Not sure if it is the cough syrup or Lionel, but I now have a serious case of the nods.
As I sign off to take a midday cat nap with the kiddies (day off, in case you're wondering), let me wish you all a great Easter weekend!
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
I even started a blog over there. I know, I know; I blog here on Pheasantly Fascinating just a little more often than I have to comb my hair, but it’s something. So I have given the man some money, I started a blog, I started a fundraising page, I harrased some friends via Hilda to become my “Barack Buddies” (that still sounds wrongs), what’s next?
So, that’s all I am going to say on the topic over here (maybe).
Monday, March 17, 2008
So, here is my list of celebs I've met, starting in chronological order:
1. Cassandra Peterson - Okay, who? Elvira. This was in the very early 80's and was at a local fair type event, if memory serves me correctly, which is not often the case, it was at the Strawberry Festival in Plant City. She had a table at where ever it was and I stood in a long line to say hello. Hey, she was hot.
2. President Reagan - I was 19 and I was a purchasing clerk for the Miami Airport Hilton. I had to do inventory in a dark storage room off of a service corridor. Well, apparently they forgot I was in there because when I walked out, I walked right into the President's security detail just a few feet from Him. Okay, I know he's not Jesus, but typing him with a lower cased h just doesn't seem to pack enough reverence. He turned to me and gave me a very pleasant smile. He seemed nice, and damn if the man ain't tall!
3. Jack Canfield - The creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul. He was a speaker at an event my dad and step-mom organized in the early 90's to help at-risk kids.
4. Preston Wilson - In 2000, I went to a Cub's game while visiting a friend in Chicago. I went because they were playing the Marlins. Preston was the Center Fielder for the Marlins at the time. The night before the game I made a sign that read, "MVP......Most Valuable Preston". At a midday Cubs game, my sign got some attention. He signed it after the game.
5. Dr. Marta Perez - Okay the hyperlink actually goes to a Wikipedia entry for "Miami-Dade County Public Schools, but it references as one of it's members. So if local politicians count as celebs, then add her to my list. I've known her on a first name basis for several years due to my affiliation with Toastmasters.
6. OJ Simpson - Okay, I'm not really excited about this one. I've run into him twice, but I guess it counts. The first time was at a golf course and it was more of a sighting than a case where we had met. The second time was at a salad bar at a Steak & Ale. We each said hi to each other, commented on the selection of the salad bar. I thought to say something like, "We seem to be missing a steak knife, would you know where it is?", but I was too chicken.
7. Dave Barry - It was before the beginning of the 2005 Herald Hunt. I was trying to probe him (okay, I never thought I'd use those words) about the answer to a clue.
Okay, that's all I have.
Who have you met? Let me know if you wanna play along.
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Yes, my fellow foodies, I know, CB&C is more an Irish American immigrant concoction than it is Irish, and according to Alton Brown, they got the corned beef idea from the Jewish American immigrants. But as I learned in the check-out line, it is the Irish Soda Bread that should have you reeling back in Epicurean horror.
I picked up the bread because, well it said "Irish". I figured, 'Give 'em some bread so that they get full on that and then the meat will go a little further'. But when I tasted the sample in the bakery it seemed very sweet - something that you'd serve at breakfast. But, not being one to be swayed by the obvious, I tossed it into my cart to be served with dinner anyway. So, there I was in the check-out line, with this nagging sensation that I was completing a horrific epicurean blunder, hence the line earlier about "reeling back in Epicurean horror". What to do? What to do? I called my boss & her hubby, who are both from Ireland. No doubt recognizing my cell # on a Saturday, it went to her voice mail. Not really...because she called me back a few seconds later.
(I tell her our dinner plans)
Her: "Well, I hate to be the one to tell you this, but we don't eat Corned Beef & Cabbage back home".
(She has been in the states for over a decade, owns a home in the states, has started a beautiful family in the states....but still refers to Ireland as 'back home')
Me: "I know. But I was actually calling about the soda bread."
Her: "Well, what they sell there isn't realllllllllly soda bread. What we have at home, we toast it and serve it with jam in the morning."
(As it turns out, there is nothing green in the reall mckoy)
Me: "So, I shouldn't serve it with the Corned Beef & Cabbage?"
Her: "Are these folks from Ireland?"
Her: "Then what are you worried about? Serve it. Now, will there be anything else you need from the Irish Information Helpline?"
(Sounding maybe just a wee bit preoccupied with, you know, her own life, but much too polite to say anything)
Me: No ma'am.
So with semi-approval from a true Irish(wo)man, I served my dinner to our friends. They loved it....even the soda bread.
Friday, March 14, 2008
It’s that time of week. Short and sweet intro. Take ‘er away Fred!
- “All Out of Love”, by Air Supply Okay, as cheesy as this song is…it’s one of those sinful addictions. Let me put down my (wife’s) hairbrush-cum-microphone.
- “Mercy Mercy Me”, by Marvin Gay He sings: “Things ain’t what they used to be.” Yes, Marvin, the price of coke goes up like everything else – deal.
- “Looks Like We Made It” by Barry Manilow. Good Lord! Wake me up, before I throw throw…up!
- “Someone Keeps Moving My Chair”, by They Might Be Giants. How do these guys do it? Getting us to sing along with non-sensical lyrics. Yes, “non-sensical”. New word alert.
- “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”, by Meat Loaf. When Fred & I do our Friday Shuffles, we tend to skip to the next song after we get down the name and artist….not this one, bay-bee. Play it all the way. All 7 minutes and 6 seconds.
- “Did She Jump or Was She Pushed”, by Richard & Linda Thompson.
- “Dude Looks Like a Lady”, by Aerosmith. Been there. Done that. Uh, not really.
- “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, by the Beattles
- “Good Times, Bad Times”, by Led Zeppelin Awesome
- “Leaves That Are Green” by Simon & Garfunkel or by Paul Simon depending on which album you’re listening to. Either way…a very pretty song.
Everyone, have a great weekend!
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Here is a fun what the heck thing to do courtesy of Hilda.
Here are the rules as stated there:
Pick 10 of your favorite movies.
Go to IMDB and find a quote from each movie.
Post them on your blog for everyone to guess in the comments.
Strike it out when someone guesses correctly, and put who guessed it and the movie.
GUESSERS: NO Googling/using IMDB search functions. I mean, you can cheat if you want, but that's no fun? One movie guess per human allowed in the comments.Aaaaaaand...ACTION!
Oh, that what now. I tell you what now between me and you. There is no me and you. Not no more."Pulp Fiction", guessed correctly by Marty I do not mean to pry, but you don't by any chance happen to have six fingers on your right hand? Do you always begin conversations this way?"Princess Bride", guessed correctly by Marty A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll know tomorrow."Men In Black", guessed correctly by Marty
- You don't like it, do you Rocco, the storm? Show it your gun, why don't you? If it doesn't stop, shoot it.
- All my life I had to fight. I had to fight my daddy. I had to fight my uncles. I had to fight my brothers. A girl child ain't safe in a family of men, but I ain't never thought I'd have to fight in my own house!
You guys looking for something for your mom? I really don't think so...[reads her nametag]…Sue. [Astonished] You guys have... girlfriends? You know, I really wouldn't refer to a 23-year-old woman as a girlfriend... more of a lover... Lover... mistress. Sexpot. Sexpot is what she is. You guys are the ones who got beat up at the homecoming game... right?"Weird Science", guessed by Marty.
- So, what's the deal with you two, you a couple of fags? He's my son. Yeah, how'd that happen? You don't look Japanese. Neither does he. He looks Chinese. Oh, well pardon me all to hell.
- Now, she should be good-looking, but we're willing to trade looks for a certain... morally casual attitude.
- PROSTITUTION! But what does that mean really? Sometimes it helps to understand a word if you break it down, so let's do that now shall we? Pros... it doesn't mean anything, you can forget about that... Tit, I think we all know what that means, Tu, two tit and TION of course, from the Latin to shun... to say uh-uh no thank you anyway I don't want it, to push away... it doesn't even belong in this word really.
- You ever take a dump made you feel like you'd just slept for twelve hours?
Please play along and let me know if decide to come up with quotes on your blog!