Saturday, September 10, 2016

Hillary Clinton's "Basket of Deplorables" or: The Shame of Judging Our Fellow Americans.

This is an editorial on the recent "Basket of Deplorables" comment made by Hillary Clinton referencing supporters of Donald Trump. This isn't intended as an explanation of what happened in detail. If you're not aware of the situation, you can read about it here and here.

A great number of left wing commentators and pundits are saying that Hillary Clinton's "Basket of Deplorables" remark didn't go far enough. In essence, these mouthpieces and Clinton surrogates believe that MORE than half of Trump's supporters are racists and villainous miscreants.
I'm a moderate independent with zero love for either the Democrats or Republicans, so I have no problems with calling it like I see it.
Hillary Clinton is full of fluffy, glitter-laced unicorn crap.
You know who supports Trump? People that don't trust the federal government (and rightfully so). People that don't want to give a corrupt criminal organization more of their hard-earned money. People that are tired of being told what they can and can't do within the bounds of their own home and with their own property. People that don't want to be taken advantage of by Uncle Sam. These people have every reason to feel the way they do. It has nothing to do with hating people of different skin tones. It has nothing to do with xenophobic nationalism. It definitely has nothing to do with wanting to spread hate and fear.
Most importantly, there are people like me that flat-out refuse to support a dishonest, untrustworthy war criminal like Hillary Clinton... no matter how 'progressive' and 'thoughtful' she claims to be. Trump is the only viable agent of change to a large number of our fellow Americans. Not because he's likable or altruistic, but because he's simply an alternative to the status quo -- more corruption, more death, more greed, more destruction of the American dream.
Sure, I'll be the first to admit that Trump can be a blustering, egotistical, inarticulate jerk. And yet, at least Trump isn't Hillary Clinton. For many of our fellow Americans, that's the 'lesser of two evils' in this election cycle. Shame on you (and those big-mouthed pundits) for looking down on that decision. Shame on you for judging our fellow citizens who are just trying to make the best of a bad situation. Most of all, shame on you for ignoring reality. Hillary Clinton is perhaps the most slippery and nefarious politician I've known in my lifetime. I'd say her husband Bill is worse, but Hillary actually took steps to cover up the crimes he committed and silence the women he violated. She's revolting in every capacity. Hillary Clinton is a traitor to humanity, all in the pursuit of money and power.
Trump might be a pompous braggart, but at least he hasn't made direct decisions that have gotten people slaughtered. As far as I'm concerned, the American men and women in that "Basket of Deplorables" have made the right call.

Monday, August 29, 2016

My Journey To Losing 100 Pounds.

When we last spoke, I left you with a cliffhanger concerning watermelons. And then, like a fleeting phantom in the night...

I was gone.

It's been approximately two and a half months since I published a blog article. Many of my dedicated readers probably wondered where I got off to. What happened? Well, here's the story.

Nearly all of my life, I have been overweight. Food became a coping mechanism for stress early in my youth. When I was sad, I ate. When I was angry, I ate. When I was depressed, I ate even more! Entering first grade as a child, I ballooned up and got husky (a term that just oozes 1980's nostalgia). During my middle school years, I weighed in the ballpark of 250 pounds. I started high school at 275 pounds. By the time I graduated in June of 2000, I was a whopping 303 pounds.

Over the course of the following decade, I continued to eat myself to death. Between 2011 and 2012, I topped out at an astounding 343 pounds. My late teens and twenties were an emotionally tumultuous period, and it showed in a very tangible way. I wore my emotions on my sleeve... and on my gut, back, shoulders, arms, legs and ass.

In August of 2013, I decided enough was enough and began a journey to better health. There's no coincidence that my physical health began to improve parallel with my mental health. I started writing this blog to heal emotionally and spiritually. As I let go of the internal baggage holding me back, so too did I relinquish the very physical baggage weighing me down.

Over the past three years, I've transformed myself on the inside and on the outside. Today, I write to you a healthier man, a happier man...

a man that weighs 100 pounds lighter.

When I first started my weight loss, I never even imagined I'd lose this much weight. I thought I'd get twenty or thirty pounds off and call it a day. I just assumed I was meant to be a big guy the rest of my life. Just getting to 300 pounds was an achievement in my book.

But... I kept going. I'm not sure why, but I just kept going. I developed a sense of willpower which I didn't have ever before. Luckily, I also had a partner in Crystal who supported me at every step of the way. When I was weak, she was there to carry me along. I can't thank her enough.

These past few months, I pushed extra hard to hit my goal -- lose 100 pounds by the end of August. To focus on that goal, I stepped away from writing. Very literally, I needed some me time.

Today, I weigh 243 pounds.

Thankfully, I don't have a lot of extra skin sagging and drooping all over me. I contribute this to losing the weight responsibly and at a reasonable pace. I didn't take any weight loss supplements or magic pills. No surgery was involved, nor any fad diets. I didn't follow the silly rapid weight loss plans that you see on The Biggest Loser (which is why so many of those contestants put the weight right back on).

I feel deflated.

Unfortunately, I still have a big head... but that's something I was blessed with at birth... probably not going anywhere.

I ate right. I controlled my portions. I exercised. I used my willpower to know what not to eat. It's as simple as that.

I know I'm still overweight, but at least I'm able to live a somewhat normal life. I can climb mountains. I can hike trails. I can run without passing out. Heck, I'm moderately cute and attractive (okay, that's a slight stretch). Most importantly, I'm not going to stop. I'd like to get to 220 pounds and see how I look. If I still have some extra pudge, maybe 200 pounds is my finish line. I just don't know yet. Either way, I've done something most people can not say they have ever done. For once, I'm proud of myself.

So what's the takeaway from all of this?

If a schmuck like me can lose a ton of weight, so can you. Just let it go.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Interesting Facts About Watermelon.

A square watermelon? Don't worry, I explain below.

I (not so) graciously consumed a slice of watermelon earlier. It was quite delicious and definitely satisfying. Accordingly, I figured hey... why not drop some watermelon facts on my audience? Nothing hot and heavy here for you to process this evening, just some cool facts about a cool fruit... and a vegetable?

  • Yes, watermelons are both a fruit and a vegetable. They grow from a seed, making them a fruit. And yet, they are within the same family of vegetables as pumpkins, squash and cucumbers. The watermelon is a trans-food substance! How progressive!
  • The wild watermelon, which looks much different than the watermelon we typical eat, originated in southern Africa.
  • A watermelon is 92% water, making it a natural thirst quencher and great for your kidneys.
  • Watermelons also contain high amounts of manganese, Vitamin C, Vitamins B1 and B6, Vitamin A and potassium.
  • Watermelons are also packed with electrolytes, making them a much better choice for consumption over sugar-filled energy and athletic drinks.
  • Most of the world's watermelons are grown in China.
  • In China, the rind of the watermelon is eaten like a stir-fried vegetable.
  • Japan has the strangest watermelons of all. You can purchase higher-end square watermelons, which are seen as fashionable. How do the farmers do it? They grow the watermelons in square glass containers, in which the melons gradually take on the shape. We really need these in the USA!
  • The heaviest watermelon ever recorded was nearly 270 pounds.
  • You can carve a watermelon just like a pumpkin at Halloween. When you light it with a candle, the red interior takes on the spooky appearance of blood! I did this as a child many times and can verify that it works.
And now, for you viewing pleasure (and just because it's my blog and I can do what I want), here is a video of an exploding watermelon!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Draw Something: Chomper Ghost

I'll always give The Real Ghostbusters cartoon from the '80s credit for being inventive with their weekly creatures of fright and terror. Much of the time, the ghosts were meant to be silly or simply visually memorable. In the vein of those classic animated creatures, I decided to doodle a simple ghost design... something just as likely to be released in the accompanying action figure series as well. Just imagine this slimey fella with a button activated biting feature. CHOMP!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

In Plane Site.

I'm pregnant with your child.
Oozing bags of puss are weeping from my fingertips.
D.B. Cooper is my real name.
I own not one, not two, but three magic bullets.
The Bermuda Triangle is where I found Jimmy Hoffa.
My left foot has seven toes.
Oranges make me sneeze official Nickelodeon slime.
When I was seven, I conquered Mars with a pencil.
Green is really a futuristic camouflage to hide two dimensional butt pirates.
I can walk on water, but only when it's really cold.
There's a colony of stranded alien cow-probers in my tool shed.
Stonehenge is just a fancy toilet for druids.
Not only have I found Atlantis, but I sold it to mermaids.
Yes, I know mermaids.
Roswell was a cover up for an all-night rave hosted by DJ Boomin' Truman.
The Lost Roanoke Colony just got bored and went to play golf.
I like to play croquet at Redpath Mansion.
Drive-in theaters were invented by lazy, perverted slashers.
Your mom called; she wants you to meet your real father.
Numbers stations are where I find all of my best recipes.
Once in a lifetime you'll take a road to nowhere and find a psycho killer.
I always tell the truth when I'm lying.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Random Suds Review: Wells Banana Bread Beer.

Time to review an import. That's right... our random review this time around will be Wells Banana Bread Beer. Brewed by the UK based Charles Wells Brewing Company (aka Wells & Young's Brewing Company), it's a favorite of the British beer-drinking populace. It is 5.2% Alc. by volume and created with fair trade bananas as part of the brewing process. As such, it supposedly has a remarkable flavor not normally experienced in an adult beverage. Is it true or just a bunch of hocus pocus? I'm going to find out.

As with all of my reviews, I will taste test the beer at two different temperatures -- cold and at room temperature. Here we go!

  • Very strong banana odor upon pouring it into the glass.
  • Light fizz.
  • No head to speak of.
  • Initial taste revealed a bold, but not overpowering banana flavor.
  • No bitterness at all to speak of.
  • The background of the flavor profile is both nutty and bread-like, as one would hope.
  • Much to my pleasure, the beer is not overly sweet or artificial tasting.
  • Quite enjoyable and easy to drink!
At Room Temperature:
  • Has developed a slight amount of bitterness, but nothing terrible.
  • The bread-like nature has become more emboldened.
  • The fizz has completely dissipated.
  • As to the flavor, the banana has mellowed and isn't as fruity.
  • Still perfectly acceptable to drink warm, just not as good as when cold.
And there you have it! A flavorful imported beer with an awesome taste. If you like banana bread, or just bananas, you will enjoy this beer from Charles Wells. Look for Wells Banana Bread Beer at your local specialty beer and wine retailer!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Crystal's Tips For Improving Baseball.

Crystal and I went to a Greensboro Grasshoppers minor league baseball game this evening. If you weren't already aware, I'm a massive baseball fan. Baseball truly is America's past time. Forget basketball or football... baseball is where it's at.

On the other hand, Crystal finds baseball to be dreadfully boring and a waste of time.

While watching the game, I had Crystal compose a list of ways to improve the sport for bored viewers like herself. As such, she gets credit for tonight's article. I'm merely the messenger. And now...

Crystal's Tips For Improving Baseball!

  • Fights - Let the players beat each other senseless, as they do in hockey.
  • Throwing money - Shoot coins at the fans, or onto the field.
  • Put obstacles on the field - Barb wire, mud pits, swinging chainsaws, etc. The more dangerous the better!
  • Rubber bullets - Give the players pistols to fire the non-lethal projectiles at opposing players.
  • Spiked balls - They'll make someone fielding a ball think twice about catching it! If the fans are lucky, the players will often catch the spiked ball with their face.
  • Flaming mascots - light them on fire and have them run a race around the bases!
  • Free ice cream for the fans - Sprinkles are absolutely mandatory.
  • Just not be a sport - Seriously, stop playing baseball. It sucks.
And finally, the number one tip that made me burst with laughter as we watched behind home plate...
  • Refunds for boredom - A full refund... every game, every time.