Friday, September 28, 2007

Lost In Translation?

Have you ever noticed that different cultures find different things funny? Here are a few jokes I have translated from German into English (well I am giving it my best shot!) I haven't heard Americanized versions of these jokes, so I am curious to see if you think they are funny!

Joke Number 1:
Q. Why do blonds always walk by the medicine cabinet on their tippy-toes?
A. Because they don't want to wake up the sleeping pills!

Joke Number 2:
"This is the last time I am going to tell you!" the doctor yells at the nurse, "When you fill out a death certificate, you enter the name of the disease the patient died of under "Cause of Death" and NOT the name of the doctor who treated him!"

Joke Number 3: This one is a little long...
A priest and a nun are playing ping-pong. The priest is somewhat out of practice and before long, he misses the ball completely and says "SH%T, ... I missed!". The nun reprimands him for this, because God does not approve of swearing!

The two continue playing, but after awhile the priest loses it after missing the ball completely again and says "SH%T, ... I missed!" At this the nun gives him another, this time very stern, reprimand.

The priest pulls himself together and the play continues, but it doesn't take long before he hits the ball completely off the table! He can't control himself and yells "SH%T, ... I missed!!!", whereupon the sky darkens ominously and a violent thunderstorm begins! All of a sudden, the nun is struck by a bolt of lightening! The priest, now cowering under the ping-pong table, hears a booming voice from above: "SH%T, ... I missed!!!!"

Have a nice day!


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Where to Go to College?

Where? No really, I'm asking! My daughter is a junior in high school now; the time when students start weighing their options, researching schools, trying to find the right mix of affordability and quality.

There are the pie in the sky options: Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, Yale, Columbia...those fine old institutions with excellent reputations for their unyielding devotion to the pursuit of knowledge. Oh yeah, and the piece of paper you get at the end that pretty much guarantees the holder admittance to the good life. (After you pay off the $150,000 in student loans).

A parent can lose sleep at night just thinking about the cost of sending one's offspring off to college. You want only the best for your children, right?

Well cheer up! Recent events have shown that many of those pricey places are full of numskulls, and you can in good conscience tell your child that you are not going to waste your money to have them be taught by idiots.

Who am I to judge you say? Well, here is why I say this. Let's take Stanford as an example. The Hoover Institution has invited Donald Rumsfeld to come hang out for a spell. Many on the faculty at Stanford have signed a petition trying to prevent Mr. Rumsfeld from doing so (students too, but they are young and ignorant so they are excused.)

My point is as follows: This is not about whether you like or dislike, agree or disagree with Donald Rumsfeld. It is about a group of people who are employed by what I used to think was one of the finest universities in the US, who are supposed to be interested in truth and knowledge, categorically refusing to give an opposing viewpoint a forum.

Here is a man who for better or worse has been advising on, shaping, creating and deciding American foreign policy for roughly 40 years and these Brainiacs don't even want to listen to him? Because they somehow know that he is immoral? How do they know that? Does the sun go dark and do flowers wilt when he is near? Because they work at Stanford and therefore know everything? Don't you have to know a few facts to make a judgement like that?

Wouldn't they be just a little curious to hear what a man like Rumsfeld has to say in a non-soundbite environment? Couldn't they entertain the notion that perhaps Mr. Rumsfeld has a few useful things to say just based on his unique perspective? I guarantee you there are things that this man knows that nobody else does. The chances of us learning about them are small, but the chances are ZERO if we refuse to even listen.

What does a math professor and an art history professor know about global politics anyway? Do they really think they know better? How can you be sure you haven't gone off the deep end in your thinking if you are surrounded by people who "think" just like you? Here is their official gripe:

"We view the appointment as fundamentally incompatible with the ethical values of truthfulness, tolerance, disinterested enquiry, respect for national and international laws, and care for the opinions, property and lives of others to which Stanford is inalienably committed."
I mean seriously. How can you write something like that without drowning in the hypocrisy of it?

Cross Columbia off the list too. If the President of the school is such a dope1, you know the rest of them can't be much better.

Cornell hired one of the 2 professors who were crucifying the 4 Lacrosse players at Duke University, so they must look for only those qualified to "Leap before you Look".

The collective motto of our nation's higher learning institutions seems to be:

"Who Needs Reality? We Have Opinions!"

So I am going to save my money....after all I have my own opinion, and it's FREE!


1 For not listening to his mother when she told him "There is no excuse for bad manners", for giving our enemies all the more ammunition against us, and for having the audacity to say things like this: "According to Amnesty International, 210 people have been executing In Iran so far this year, 21 of them on the morning of September 5th alone." US Executions (See: Pot vs. Kettle)

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Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Excuse Me, Why Am I Calling You?


(Race to find my cell phone)


Robovoice: "This is Sears Home Delivery calling, please hold while I find a customer service agent"

(Some elevator music... ****Dingaling****)

(The only reason I stay on phone despite Robovoice is that we ordered a new, Energy Star fridge for our vacation home from We were using more electricity in the empty house than we do for our entire lived-in house! oops! Somebody on the line now!)

CSA: "Hello, This is blah, blah, blah, What is the phone number of the order you are calling about?"

Me: Uh...(try first number - not in system, then cell phone number - the one they are calling me on, not in system, then number for vacation house where new fridge will be delivered, nope not that either)!

CSA: "Did you buy this on or in the Store?"

Me: ""

CSA: "Well sometimes when you buy things on, it doesn't get entered into our system!"

Me: "But you called me..."

CSA: "You will have to call to find out about your order."

Me: "But I don't really want to talk to them, you called me! Doesn't that mean my number is in the system?"

CSA: "They have a different system than we do." (I absolutely love it when employees of companies start to explain the convoluted internal systems they use as if it should be obvious to me, and as an excuse as to why they are not responsible for anything...)

Me: "OK, well I'll do that then...bye!"

***Call Ends***

I don't mean to pick on Sears, this kind of thing happens to me all the time when dealing with customer service departments...

But usually, I have called them! Sheesh!


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E for Effort

People have been making fun of this young lady (Miss South Carolina) because she stumbles a bit with her world peace/end poverty question. But Come On!, what could she really have answered?

The correct answer would have been "Because they are a bunch of Dumb-Asses", but that doesn't seem very pageant like now does it!


Thursday, September 13, 2007


Hello again! It just got even better!

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Here's the code again so you can copy it easily: feel_good@yoox
(It doesn't need to be orange ;=))
Just a quick note to let you know about this YOOX coupon for free shipping! It's only available via this link, and no yoox code is required!

Happy Shopping!


PS... The offer expires September 24th and Yoox is also having a big 70% Off clearance sale.
PPS...This nice visitor left this note:
If you use pp@yoox, you get 5% off plus free shipping. I just tried it last week.

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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Barak Obama Stops By

Maybe they are used to this kind of thing in Iowa or New Hampshire, but out here in California, we are not so used to seeing US presidential hopefuls in person (unless you happen to have tons of money and influence and are throwing them a schmooze party in Hollywood), so I thought it was rather exciting to hear that one had decided to come to town and talk to the regular folks! (Yes, we do have regular folks out here...)
So this morning, I grabbed my camera and my DH and I headed to Santa Barbara to see the American political process in action in the form of Senator Barak Obama at a rally held at Santa Barbara City College. I have never been to such an event before, and didn't really know beans about Mr. Obama, but I have to say it was a very pleasant experience (except that I forgot to put on sunscreen).
I would highly recommend going to hear a presidential candidate if you get the chance, whether you support him or her or not, because you become a better citizen for it. In the case of Mr. Obama, it could turn out to be a major event in American history.

He is a great speaker; one of those rare people who really connects with their audience and is able to communicate his ideas and intentions in way such that I could believe that he believes in what he was saying. (Not always the case you know).

I have heard people say that he is not experienced enough to be president, but I found him to be rather confidence inspiring. He spoke about health care and said he intends to make sure that health insurance is available to every American by the end of his first term as president.

He told us that his mother had died of cancer when she was just 53, and that she had been diagnosed during a period when she was changing jobs, so had the happy experience of spending the last few months of her life trying to determine whether her new health insurance would cover her treatment. I tell you this because IMHO, an experience like that makes it more likely that health care would be a priority for President Obama (There...I said it!).

My favorite thing that Senator Obama said was that he will tell it like it is, and tell the American people where he stands on an issue. I hope he means that, and I for one, am going to hold him to it.

PS...did I mention he is also very handsome? (and seems to be a genuinely nice man.) Also, rumor has it that he and his wife are staying with Oprah in Montecito (she has a $36 million house must be plated in gold or something...and will be hosting a party of some sort for the Obamas.) Just had to throw that last bit of gossip in! Ta! Update: I was wrong about staying with Oprah...she did throw a party for him...but they actually stayed at what I still refer to as Fess Parker's Hotel. They call it something different now!

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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

The Value Of a Housewife - Things I Wonder About

Recently I picked up a used book from the early 90s at my local Vons during one of their used book sales (a veritable gold mine for the retro-researcher) titled (rather inappropriately): Women, Men, and Society. - (My suggestions for more accurate titles include:
  2. Why We Hate White Males, or
  3. Symptoms Of The Grass Is Always Greener Syndrome.)
It is all about so-called gender inequality.

Gender inequality. Just to recap, by that the authors mean that men's lot in life is better than women's. They also complain a lot about how men always get to do the important things, while women get stuck with the boring old jobs that men don't want. This book was in use as a college course text book, and has been used (and still is being used) to brainwash an entire generation of Americans.

So as a result of this, women have run out and busied themselves with getting to do important things too. Which has resulted in some oddities, like women getting the "right" to go get themselves killed in war, (Too!) If men decided to feed themselves to lions, I guess the authors would want women to start slathering themselves up with BBQ Sauce next?

With this I mean to point out that most men, once faced with the realities of war, would rather not be shot at or blown to bits, but sign up for the job anyway because they have a sense of honor and duty to protect their home and family.

So I had this funny little conversation running through my head:

Authors: "But women have a sense of honor and duty tooooooo (whiny 2 year old voice)."
Me: "Yes, I know that, dear, but somebody has to care for the things we are fighting to protect."
Authors: "But men get all the important jobs (remember to invoke the 2 year old)."
So that got me thinking about what is important. Health, Home & Family and hopefully enough resources to live comfortably and maybe enjoy a few of the finer things in life. Pretty much everything else in life, from international politics to molecular biology, is a means to achieve those ends.

So in reality, women throughout history have been entrusted with caring for the very things that we value most. Men have been our servants, our laborers, whom we have tasked with obtaining the various items on our list that we require to care for home and family.

We had the Grail and we tossed it in the garbage so we could go look for it.

Now I understand that the search can be part of the fun and all that, but that does not mean that the Grail is worthless! Does it?



Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Mars and the Vogue Fall Fashion Issue

Most of us are familiar with the book "Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus", even if we haven't read it, we get it that men are sometimes living on a different planet than us gals. If we somehow manage to forget, trust in the fact that the darlings will do or say something to remind us!

For example, my DH and I had just embarked on the 7 hour drive from our vacation home to home-home and I had stocked up on magazines to entertain myself with on the long drive. I pulled out the first, the September issue of Vogue
(EXTRA-EXTRA LARGE - Our Biggest Issue Ever - 840 pages of FEARLESS FASHION)
and happily hunkered down for some fashion enjoyment.

Which prompted the following comment from DH:
"Oh is that that Vogue magazine? I read about that on Slashdot!"

(He gets that tone in his voice which lets me know that he is about to tell me something very wise that he is sure I must not be aware of.)

"Some guy counted all the pages that were advertisements in that magazine and found that Seven-Hundred-Something pages were just ads!"

(Background music: Ground control to Major Tom...)

There it was. All I could do was smile and do my best to reply with a male-ego-saving

"Oh Really?"

I couldn't pull it off though, my smile turned into giggles and I had to explain that women buy Vogue for the articles the same way men buy Playboy for the articles. A look of understanding crept across his face.

3 - 2 - 1 Blast OFF!

Communication has been established...Houston, we hear you loud and clear!


Monday, September 03, 2007

Happy Labor Day!

I hope everybody is having a wonderful labor day week-end, and has the day off to spend time with family and friends. Today is a great day for a picnic or a barbecue or even a labor day parade, despite what this gentleman thought in 1910:
"And it's high time that Labor day were celebrated for what it really is not a mere holiday picnic and parade- but a day of tremendous significance, set apart and dedicated to the glory of all labor and to the exalting of its ideal the democracy of common endeavor."
Remember: Drive Safely on the way home - You Booze You Lose! (I mean driving under the influence...but that doesn't rhyme!) Labor day is a very busy day for the Grim Reaper!


PS: If you are home doing projects, here is a last minute coupon for the Inside Store: Labor Day Sale! Save 12% on state-of-the-art items for all your home improvement projects! Coupon Code: LABORDAY12 Ends Sept. 3

What Year? - Take a Guess!