Thursday, December 31, 2015

What Matters?

What matters to you says a lot about you.  In some instances, it defines who you are to others.

That's an awful lot of power, isn't it?

If that's the case, it would behoove us to be mindful of what is mattering to us.  Does it amount to a hill of beans in the grand scheme?  Does it better anyone's life?  Is it really how we want to be defined?

The New Year gives us a great chance to take audit of our lives; to see where we are, and where we long to be.  As part of that audit, we should perhaps include an inventory of what matters to us.

We may very well find that what we feel matters, really doesn't matter much at all.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Career Murder (Suicide?) by Social Media

Recently, a Minnesota man sent a racist screed to Black Lives Matter via Facebook.  It was vulgar (the 'n' word was used), and it contained sentiment that sounded pretty darned hateful.

The link to his post is here.

Why did he do it?  Nobody knows except him.  Regardless, he did it, and as stated here previously, what happens on the internet is ALWAYS public.

Beyond using racist language, the person that sent the message made the error of listing his employer on his Facebook profile.  Immediately things kicked into gear on the BLM side, and calls when out to his employer to take action against the man, or face the wrath of a boycott.

Immediately his employer fired him.

Should his employer have done that?  In some respects it seems like they're overstepping their bounds and knuckling under to political correctness extortion.  On the other side, if this guy was managing black employees, I don't know how you'd ever get that cow back in the barn.  I see no other path forward than to fire him.

And it's not just this job that the guy lost.  Every future HR area will Google his name, and be presented with the same.  His entire career is toast.

You're not anonymous online.  Ever.  And if you do something stupid, or espouse an opinion that others think is repugnant, it can cost you. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

Amazing Statistical Analysis on WWII

In a stunning graphical presentation, the true losses of World War II are laid bare:


The Fallen of World War II from Neil Halloran on Vimeo.

A few take aways:

  • Those that lived through WWII suffered immensely
  • We're very lucky to live when we live
Amazing

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Elect Trump and Expect More Terrorism

In a recent focus group of American Muslims, the subject of Donald Trump was discussed.

For one guy on the panel, he was pretty sure that The Donald meant more terrorism:



View More: Live News|More News Videos

Interesting conclusion - elect who Muslims want, or reap the whirlwind of increased terror.

Nice.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas


Luke 2 8-20

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”


So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Eve

How unique that Christmas, of all the days and celebrations, has the day before specifically called out.  Oh, sure, New Year's Eve has that distinction as well, but I'd argue that's because so many folks use the last moments of that day to ring in the new year.

Why is that?

Perhaps it's because we've waited so long for Christmas.  We've made it through Advent, sure.  But much more than that; we've slogged through a dark and dreary world.  We've been weighed down by material things, by how poorly we treat each other, by sin.  We've lost our patience, and in some instances our faith, and even our hope.

The promise of Christmas breaks all of that.  The birth of a Savior shows how much God really loves us, and how He wants to be reconciled with us.  It shows how much we matter to Him - each of us, regardless of how we perceive our worth.  Jesus was born for us.

Maybe that's how the whole Eve thing got started: we just can't wait anymore.  With good reason.  In a world where it appears evil is winning and expanding, we're tired, drowning, and afraid.

Christmas reminds us so manifestly of the glory of Christ being with us, our Emanuel, reminds us that we are not alone.  Love wins.  Love always wins.  Celebrating this a day early seems understandable.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Europe Needs to Educate Muslim Migrants Not to Rape

A recent news article described the difficulty European societies are having keeping their women safe from newly arrived Muslim migrants.  The news source? No, not some right wing rag.  It's the Old Grey Lady herself.  

It seems these guys move into town, catch glimpses of women in mini-skirts, and it makes their sexually oppressed blood boil.  You see, in their country, the only women wearing skimpy clothes, drinking alcohol, and kissing in public are prostitutes.  Every other woman is covered head to toe.  So, naturally (as the story alludes), once these guys see western women, they undoubtedly want to rape them.

Hence the need to set up classes to educate them that raping women is bad.

It has been previously said that the Left in general and the media in particular have bent over backwards to excuse the behavior of Muslims.  This article takes it to a whole new level.

At its core it seems to say, "While we love your cultural differences, your brutalization of women (while more than fine in your old country, mind you!) just doesn't work here, OK?  So if you would be so kind and just forget decades of what has been drummed into your head and treat women as your equal that would be great.  Oh, and by the way, that means abstaining from raping them, OK?  That'd be great.  Thanks, and welcome to your new home!" 

You need to read this article.  After you finish you need to pray - for the women of Europe, but more so for the women of Islam who live with this brutality every stinking day.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Mr. Plow Makes a YouTube Ad

From one of the best Simpsons episodes ever comes a nifty little advert for YouTube:



Great mix of pop culture and advertising that works like a champ.  Or at least until The Plow King takes out his own YouTube ad...

Monday, December 21, 2015

Islam by the Numbers

This is a long video, but it is quite effective at quantifying what exists in our world with regard to extreme Islamic beliefs.  



Islam is not a religion of peace.  It is a religion of intolerance, violence, and brutality.  Shame on those that propagate the myth otherwise.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

DHS Clueless About Our Safety

In an recent congressional hearing, Kelli Ann Burriesci, the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Screening Coordination for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), was exposed as an incompetent bureaucrat.

Unfortunately for us, her job is to keep us safe.  Literally.  Yet, when it comes to some basic elements of that safety, she hasn't a clue:



This is why people don't trust our government.  This is why people are scared.  This is why Trump is winning so resoundingly.

I'm no fan of Trump,  but ask yourself this: If Ms. Burriesci gave this testimony for his administration, do you think she'd be employed on the next business day?

Is it too much to ask for the slightest modicum of accountability from our elected officials?

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Saturday Song Share: David Bowie and Bing Crosy - Little Drummer Boy

I know this gets a lot of rotation this time of year, but I've always loved it.  As it turned out, this was the last Christmas song Bing recorded before his death.

Simpler times *sigh*

Friday, December 18, 2015

How Bad Are Race Relations?

The Wall Street Journal. recently published a survey on the state of race relations.  With rampant political correctness, 7 years of a black president, and finally getting on "the right side of history," how do relations look?

Crappy:


We're worse now than we've been in over 20 years.

Feel free to draw your own conclusions as to why this would be.  In the meantime, if the data continues on the trajectory it's been on since 2012, things could get really ugly around here.


Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Present of Presence

The holiday have their own special level of stress.  Not only is work busier than at any other time of the year, but seasonal obligations like travel, presents, parties, and other seasonal chores all add up to a mix that spreads one too thin.  Likewise, the evolution of technology has created an "always on" culture that shows no signs of abating.  As such, attention spans are quickly broken, and distractions easily accepted.

I'll bet if you asked the people that really love you what they want for Christmas, they'd answer one thing: time with you.  Not with you in front of a TV, or behind an iPhone, but just with you.

Simple gift, and since you were worried about that Christmas list anyway...

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Leading from Behind

This so effectively captures the leadership that the Democrat party (and subsequently our country) is currently displaying:

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Hockey Teddy Bear Toss

In Calgary, the Hitmen are a major junior hockey team with a significant following.  They've produced multiple NHL players, and have won a couple of championships.

They've also done wonders for charity.

At their annual "Teddy Bear Toss" game, the team encourages fans to bring a new teddy bear to the game and to throw it on the ice upon the home team scoring their first goal.  The bears are then collected and donated to children in need, hospitals, and the like.

It is one of the most popular games of the season, and attracted a sell out crowd.

And 28,000 stuffed animals:

  

Monday, December 14, 2015

Christmas at the Mall

Last Saturday was spent in Minnetonka's Ridgedale mall, as I searched for holiday gifts plus a couple of things for myself.  Despite a long term career in retail, it literally was the first time in over twenty years where I've been shopping in a mall during Christmas time.  Concentrating on ecommerce all these years has kept me behind a computer instead, I guess.

A couple of things of note on the experience:

  • For a joyful season, there wasn't much joy in the stores.  Everyone seemed to be wearing stern faces and not enjoying themselves much at all.
  • The mall itself was packed.  Between the parking lots, aisles, and everywhere else, people were everywhere.  It was a wide array of folks, too.  Young, old, and in every race, size and language imaginable.  Ridgedale is no longer some lily-white enclave.
  • Multiple stores were pumping out really loud, annoying, and terrible pop "Christmas music."  It was stomach-turning.
  • I was surprised at the police presence.  I only saw a couple of officers, but both of them were loaded down for a major fight.  I guess the days of the unarmed "mall cop" are behind us.
Ultimately my trip was successful, and I was able to find what I wanted.  It just took me over two hours of distraction to do so.

Think I'll stick to this ecommerce thing in the future.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Saturday Song Share: China Crisis - Black Man Ray

A very "80's" video for a damned fine song.  Produced by Walter Becker of Steely Dan fame, in the day, this piece was simply amazing.

While the video is dated, the song as aged incredibly well.

Enjoy

Friday, December 11, 2015

Incredible Story of Child Abuse

Former NHL player Patrick O'Sullivan has penned an incredible story of his life of abuse at the hands of his father, who was set on toughening his kid up to make the NHL.  It is incredibly well written, and shocking.  

Here's his learned conclusion about not staying silent and doing something when potential abuse is witnessed:

If you are wrong, that’s the absolute best case scenario. The alternative is that child is a prisoner in his own home. What you’re seeing in the parking lot or outside the locker room — whether it’s a kid getting grabbed and screamed at, or shoved up against a car — could just be the tip of the iceberg.

It’s so ironic, because the hockey community loves to talk about toughness and courage. In that world, courage is supposed to mean standing in front of a slap shot without flinching, or taking your lumps in a fight.

But that’s easy. That’s not real courage. Anybody can do that.

I guarantee you there’s hundreds of kids across North America who will get dressed for hockey this weekend with their stomach turning, thinking the same thing I did as a kid:

“I better play really good there, or tonight is going to be really bad.”


It just takes one person to act on their instinct and stand up for that child. That’s real courage. The kind we don’t always glorify in the hockey world.

I encourage you to read the whole thing here.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The Wait for Christmas

When I was a kid, the countdown to Christmas seemed to last a lifetime.  Advent calendars sent by a loving grandparent looked massive, and the number of days they contained appeared impossible to endure.  Christmas, to a child, just can't get here fast enough.

Then something happened.  Responsibilities crept in, and a career in retail conspired with other obligations to make the countdown to Christmas a ticking clock with not enough time on it.  There's too much to do - both at work and at home - and not enough time to do it.

In trying to juggle it all, corners get cut, ever-present guilt sets in, and a blanket of "I should be doing something," settles over every waking hour.  It is lousy way to usher in such an important occasion.

However, in those brief moments of clarity and calm where one can remember the origin of the event, we get thrown a lifeline to the stress and anxiety.  

The peace of the season is ours for the taking, we just need to put ourselves in a place where we can take it.

The angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord."

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Global Warming Great for Running

Here we are at December 9, and I'm still running outdoors.  We should be a good month into winter by now, but this morning it's nearly 40 degrees, dry roads, and green grass.  Global warming might be terrible for business, but it has been great for my running.

Here was this morning's effort.  Slow pace, I know, but it was an interval run.  From that standpoint, it's not bad.



Hope you're able to get out and enjoy the weather in your neck of the woods.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Vote for Hillary, Because Gay

Yesterday's installment wasn't good enough for you?  Here's a brand new reason to vote for Hillary.  She stands for gays!  Now, you could kindly forget that her position on that changed about two years ago, but she't got your back now, by golly!

The compelling reasons for voting for this candidate - the economy, national security, race relations, jobs - all of that is just so mundane.  I mean, diversity trumps all that, amiright?

Oops, did I just type "Trump?"

What ticks me off is the obvious - nobody is for discrimination of anybody.  But that is what is being alluded to in this video.  Either you're for Hillary, because she's worried about the 2 transexuals that want to change their gender on their passport, or you're a bigot.

Likewise, the gratuitous shots of the couples kissing is just tolling for evangelical outrage.

Hillary brings nothing to the leadership table.  Except, of course, demagoguery.  


Monday, December 7, 2015

Vote for Hillary, Because She's a Girl

Like one girl writes, girls rule and boys drool.

44 boys is too many.

Not about issues.  No economics, or terrorism, or immigration.  We did, however get climate change and an anti gun rant in there.  But basically, these girls are letting us know that we should vote for our new president based on the type of her genitals.

Great.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Attorney General - Anti-Muslim Speech to be Prosecuted

Does our Constitution mean anything to anyone anymore?


AG Lynch, anytime you begin a sentence "This is country that is based on free speech, BUT..." you're wrong.  No "but."  Period.  End of sentence.  There is nothing left to amend.

However, you don't go there.  Like so many in your party, you see government as needing to bully people until they all think like you want them to think.  

You fascist.  You repugnant, bully fascist.

Check out the speech on this blog, and send over the goon squad.  

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Saturday Song Share: The Waterboys - Fisherman's Blues

This might be a repeat.  I think I had their a live version of this previously featured one Saturday.  If so, please forgive me.

Or, if you dig this tune as I do, you might thank me.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Obama is Wrong

The terrorist attack in California has proved Obama wrong multiple times in just the past couple of weeks.  Consider:

  • Obama chided Americans for being fearful of welcoming in Islamic refugees
  • Claimed that climate change is our biggest threat
  • Exclaimed that gun killings only happen in the US (see yesterday's post)
  • “The American people should feel confident that we’re going to be able to defend ourselves and make sure that we have a good holiday season and go about our lives” 
  • "We've got to do something about guns" followed quickly by a claim (a hope?) that this might be a case of "workplace violence." 
The Democrats can try to spin this all they want.  They can try and use this as a cudgel to bring about gun banning (never mind the pipe bomb factory Ma and Pa Jihad had in their kitchen).  The bottom line is their policies of open borders, immigration, racial grievance, cop-bashing, and political correctness are truly killing us.

This is not the last event.  More people will be killed.  Americans are fearful.  They should be.  And the Democrats are to blame, because they're flat out wrong.

Starting with Obama.  

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Obama in Paris: Gun Killings Only Happen In US

Does this guy recall the people that were killed in the city in which he's standing just days ago?



It used to be that a sitting US president would never, ever, criticize his country while standing on foreign soil, regardless of the circumstances.

Not Obama.

Every time the man has a microphone in front of him is a time to push his agenda.  

Even if that agenda makes one ignore the blood that's still caked to Paris streets.

This man is repugnant. 

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

What is Going On?

As we close in on 2015, our world is in a complete shambles.  Don't believe me?  Consider the following:

  • We're as close to a shooting war with Russia that we've been since the Cuban missile crisis.  If the Russians hit Turkey hard, we'll either need to stand up to our NATO obligations and defend them or let them get run over.  Given Obama, the latter will likely apply, and that sets a nasty precedent both in terms of how we treat our NATO allies and how we react to Russia.  Our enemies will now fear us less and our allies fear us more.
  • Race relations are at their worst since the late 1960's.  Police are being challenged and, in some instances, flat out murdered.  The cops are not blameless, and as we've seen in video in Chicago, murderers are in their ranks as well.
  • ISIS runs rampant and has extended their sphere of terror, murder, and rape across continents.  Our nation's response has been to demand that we accept refugees, deride those that want that policy vetted, and focus on "climate change" as the most compelling subject to be addressed.  
  • Planned Parenthood is caught red-handed selling baby body parts, but a dutiful media and Democrat party sweeps their mess under the rug.  When a clearly mentally ill shoots up a clinic, they're now the spotless victims.
  • Colleges have moved from being places of higher learning to places of hive-mentality and mental immaturity.  
Everywhere you look is hate, violence, death, destruction, and pain on a slow simmer.  Is it just more, or does it feel that with just a little bit more heat this slow simmer will soon completely boil over?

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Retail and Baseball

For those of us in retail, we’ve just made it past Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and we’re on a dead sprint to Super Saturday and the close of the holiday season.  Things are crazy right now, and the pressure is the highest it’s been all year.  If retail were baseball, we’d be in the middle of our World Series right now.  The stakes are that high.
In thinking on that further, there are a lot of similarities between baseball and retail.  Don’t think so?  Consider these:
  • Long regular season, then short, high-pressure post-season.  As stated above, we’re in the World Series right now.  Mistakes and heroics are magnified a hundred fold compared to the lazy march through the regular season.  Ultimately, what one did, good or bad, back in May matters very little if your play is peaking and you’re winning games in the critical post-season.
  • One dimensional players don’t stay in the big leagues long.  The hulking Right Fielder that is a monster power hitter, but strikes out a ton, has no defensive range, and a limited arm might make it to The Show.  However, opponents will be able to ultimately work around his one strength, and soon the champ becomes a chump.  The same applies to retailers.  Those that caught lightning in a bottle by retailing the “it” product of the moment can quickly stand atop their competition.  However, without well rounded and diversified retail capabilities, they’ll ultimately find themselves falling out of favor and finding themselves back in the retail “minors.”  
  • Doing the basics impeccably can make you a winner.  In baseball, the basics aren’t sexy.  Getting the full body in front of the ball, using two hands to catch, running out grounders, moving runners over – none of it will make ESPN.  But when done right, over and over during the course of the season, errors are mitigated, or extra bases are taken.  Those events can translate to one or two incremental wins which are incredibly valuable in a tightly contested race.  In retail, always doing standard things like getting the right products to the right place at the right time, pricing impeccably, maximizing endcaps, and facing products won’t guarantee that every game will be won.  However, it will win a couple of games, and in a brutally competitive environment, that can be huge.   
  • It’s all about the metrics.  Baseball is ruled by metrics.  Batting average, WH/IP, ERA, RBI – the list goes on and on.  Furthermore, sabermetricians like Bill James have revolutionized the game by showing how statistical nuances could revolutionize on-field decision making and influence winning.  Retail also has its metrics.  AOV, Conversion, Margin %, Inventory Turn – the list goes on and on there as well.  Those that manage by the metrics, especially those small but meaningful statistical nuances, will be affording themselves the best chance to  win for their organizations.
  • Weather can mess up everything.  An unexpected rainstorm can force a baseball team into a next-day double header.  Schedules and routines are thrown off, and teams need to improvise and overcome or get those two games swept away from them.  Likewise, unseasonal weather can massively disrupt the best laid retail plans, and force retailers to scramble to drive in customers when they’re quite reluctant to shop.  Just like in baseball, those that can mitigate the impacts of adverse weather can have a sizable competitive advantage.
  • You gotta make the fans happy.  Most folks are baseball fans, in some way, shape, or form; especially when the local team is winning.  Those franchises with big fan bases enjoy financial rewards that come with selling out that big old stadium.  Similarly, just about everyone is a shopper.  There are things they like about it, hate about it, brag about, and complain about.  They’re fans of the retail game, and they want to engage with winners.  It is our responsibility as retailers to put the very best team on the field for them that we possibly can.  If we do, we’ll be rewarded, and if we screw up, they’ll find a different "team" to support.

So, retailers, enjoy your World Series.  You’ve worked hard to get here, and the lights don’t get any brighter than right now.   But win, lose or draw, remember one thing – even though the end of the post-season is in sight, the regular season starts up again right behind it.
Play ball!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Guns are Out of Control!

With the latest shooting of a Planned Parenthood, we get the usual tripe from the left side of the aisle about the prevalence of guns.  There are just too many guns!  If they just went away, we'd all be OK.

Funny.  The libs never want to talk about mental health as a public safety issue.  And did mental health play a role in the latest shooting?  You be the judge:


I rest my case.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

World's Tallest Flagpole

If you're ever driving from Green Bay to Milwaukee (or vice versa), you're in for a treat.  In the wonderful little town of Sheboygan (and do yourself a favor - a stop in the town is well worth your time), you will see something quite amazing.  

Rising over 400 feet in the air, and hoisting an American flag that is, itself, over four stories tall, is one company's salute to our country.  

Acuity Insurance built the following, and it truly is an awesome sight to see:



Next time you're in the neighborhood, it is worth a look-see.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Saturday Song Share: Mindy Smith - Come to Jesus

Worry not my daughter
Worry not my son
Child, when life don't seem worth livin'
Come to Jesus and let Him hold you in His arms

Friday, November 27, 2015

Family Dysfunction the Rule?

It seems that one of the more popular memes this holiday season is the traditional holiday dinner as a dysfunctional nightmare.  From articles written on advice on how to "survive" Thanksgiving with the family, to commercials which are supposed to be so true that they're funny:



Is this really how most of the world views their families?  Holy cow.

My family is my oasis.  They're the people that love me.  When the rest of the world spins in abject insanity and hatred, they're the one place that I can go to recharge and feel optimistic again.  I don't need advice on how to survive with them - I need advice on how to survive without them.

Perhaps I'm just uniquely fortunate.  Regardless, when I see and hear folks implore such disdain for their own flesh and blood, I'm rendered so very, very sad.

I hope your Thanksgiving was spent with those that recharge you.

For me, that's these folks:

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving

Ralph Waldo Emerson said it very well:

For each new morning with its light, 
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, 
For love and friends, 
For everything Thy goodness sends.

Happy Thanksgiving, eveyone

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Millennials Want to Ban Your Free Speech

What we're seeing on college campuses these days borders on the shocking.  Bully tactics, disguised under the protective umbrella of "political correctness" are being used to stifle all discussion that doesn't jive with the liberal meme of the day.  Instead of being places of higher learning, colleges are quickly devolving into concentration camps that demand a hive mind mentality.

From where did all of this come?  It surely appears that this is the offshoot of a dedicated and purposeful effort to liberalize education.  For decades now, we've seen a move by liberals to co-opt the educational systems and push their brand of politics into the young skulls of mush.  

The result is a Frankenstein's monster that now feels quite comfortable ignoring one of the primary foundations of our Constitution: the practice of free speech.  Oh, you can talk alright.  You just better not say anything that they consider offensive:



40% of Millennials think it is OK for the "government" to block offensive comments.  This is our future, folks.  It's bad now, and only going to get worse.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Anonymous Attacks Isis

Having spent most of my career in ecommerce, one simple rule that one learns very early on is to not piss off the nerds.  

Hacker group Anonymous has been actively hacking Isis, sharing what they're learning with authorities, and shutting down known Isis Twitter accounts.

They're also RickRolling Isis.  Check it out:



Not sure what RickRolling is?  Let's go to Wikipedia:

Rickrolling is an Internet meme involving the music video for the 1987 Rick Astley song "Never Gonna Give You Up". The meme is a bait and switch; a person provides a hyperlink which is seemingly relevant to the topic at hand, but actually leads to Astley's video. The link can be masked or obfuscated in some manner so that the user cannot determine the true destination of the link without clicking. People led to the music video are said to have been rickrolled. 

Why is this relevant?  Because that Rick Astley song sucks.  I mean it really sucks:



I love it that some idiot in a dung hut somewhere is clicking on some hashtag like #DeathToInfidels and is immediately served up this.  

As stated earlier, don't piss off the nerds.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Thornberry Creek to Host LPGA Tour Stop in 2017


In a shocking development last week, our home golf course of Thornberry Creek was announced as the site of a LPGA tour event in the 2017 season.  It's not some rinky dink stop either; the purse for the event will be $2 million.

As residents, all we can say is "WOW!"  We've been concerned about the course for a while now.  Golf is in a free fall from a participation standpoint.  When our house was on the market all of last year, our area was ignored by buyers.  Indeed, this area has suffered for years in its inability to turn over real estate for sale.  Frankly, with each subsequent reduction we made to our home's price, it had us incredibly worried.  We had no idea what it would take to sell our home, and how much of a hit we'd have to take.

Now, in one fell swoop, we're on the map.  The prestige the event will bring to the course and the surrounding community is a life saver.  

Beyond that, Thornberry will have to up its game.  The course grounds will need to be upgraded, as will the club house and restaurant.  We stand to the be the beneficiaries of all of that spit and polish that will occur over the next two years.  Likewise, the agreement the LPGA reached with the Oneida Nation is a three year deal, so we should be able to enjoy this environment well into 2020 and beyond.

The only bad part of all of this is what we do when the tournament is in town.  Do we rent the house (hopefully to one of the 144 players) or do we stick around and enjoy the event in person?  Both are excellent options, and we'll see how it shakes out.

Regardless, it felt like we were drowning with our home, and the Oneida Nation and the LPGA just threw us a giant lifeline.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Bill Maher Takes Liberals to Task on Islam

Finally a liberal points out the truth of Islam's values and how that doesn't reconcile with our values.  

His female guest's opinion highlight mainstream liberal thought on the subject, and that is damn scary.

Kudos to Maher for speaking the truth, and not just politically correct garbage:

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Saturday Song Share: Whenever God Shines His Light - Van Morrison and Cliff Richard

Van is one of the few mainstream artists that isn't afraid to sing of his faith.  In fact, his wildly popular song "Have I Told You Lately that I Love You" was penned as a prayer.

Here he is with Cliff Richard (yes, for you The Young Ones fans, that same Cliff Richard) with a nice inspiration.

He lifts you up and turns you around
Puts your feet back on higher ground

Friday, November 20, 2015

Freedom is Not Free

A couple of years ago, my employer produced the following.  I'd like to say I could take some credit for it, but it was all done before I got there.

This is what our brand stands for and thinks important.

Man, I'm lucky.

In the meantime, listen to the stories and realize how lucky we all are:


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Refugee Crisis Has No Equal

There is a very popular meme out there on social media which states that by not allowing Syrian refugees into this country right now, we're basically repeating history.  You see, in 1938 and 1939 in this country we refused Jewish refugees trying to escape Hitler's tyranny.  We did so because we are an evil country, filled with fear and hate.

This is a remarkable comparison.  It is notable from the standpoint that it actually uses mistreatment of Jews to push a leftist agenda (usually the agenda IS the mistreatment of Jews, especially Israeli Jews, but I digress...).  Beyond that, let's look at the comparisons at their face:

  • Did the Jews come from a culture that regularly chanted "Death to America" and actively celebrated our tragedies in their streets?
  • Did the Jews have a sect that went around beheading Christians?
  • Did they push homosexuals off of buildings?
  • Did they fly planes into buildings, or blow them out of the sky?
  • Did they go about randomly killing innocent people?
  • And so on
The difference is obvious.  The reason the Left uses the comparison is equally obvious: They hate our country.  They are convinced that we're solely motivated by racist desires, so much so that, to paraphrase our esteemed President, we're "afraid of orphans and widows."

So the Left swings the door wide open.  Come to America, poor, poor refugees.  Even though we can't find Hillary Clinton's or the IRS' emails, we can certainly find the terrorists among you, and protect all of our citizens.

Sure we can.

When the inevitable happens, President Obama needs to be arrested and tried.
  

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Moschino Barbie Ad - Have We Hit Bottom Yet?

Here's the latest Barbie ad.  Thankfully for society, it features a little boy who just drips with gay stereotypes:


Think of the hundreds of adults that worked on this ad - from conceptualization, to production, to distribution.  Now think of the boy's parents that felt it just fine that he be used (and, oh boy, I do mean USED) is such a way.  All along the line, everyone felt this was just OK.  I'm sure they were all so proud of themselves of how progressive they all are.

It's not fine.  To tart some poor kid up as a flaming fashionista serves no other purpose than to damage the kid (trust me on that - this kid is doomed) and to continue to purposefully shove the gay lifestyle into corners of the world where it just doesn't belong.

It is a toy ad.  For children.  Unfortunately, that's not what got produced.  What got produced is absolutely for adults.  If kids get hurt along the way, so be it.  There's an agenda to shove in America's face.

Where does this end?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Million Student March Leader Fails Economics on Live TV

This precious little co-ed has never, in her life, been asked hard questions.  During her limited time here on the globe she's been patted on the head, told how wonderful she is, and fed talking points that she dutifully regurgitates.  

Unfortunately, she finally met an adult, and the results are as one would expect:


This is our future.  Good luck.

Monday, November 16, 2015

VIKINGS!

It has been an interesting couple of weeks living here in Green Bay, aka The Belly of the Beast.  The Packers were sputtering after losing two in a row.  But confidence reigned here in the land of beer and big BMIs as the lowly Lions were coming to town, and the Lions had never won at Lambeau since 1991.

1991.  I still had hair then.

Ah, but things didn't start too well.  Before the game, Aaron Rodgers got all upset at a fan's "prejudicial ideology" after the fan yelled something anti-Muslim during a moment of silence.  He they parlayed that into a stinker of a game, and despite trying multiple times to give it away, the putrid Lions ultimately came away with the victory.

As for the Vikings?  They were facing up-and-coming Oakland, in the Black Hole, and were four point underdogs.  

What happened?  Adrian Peterson got loose:

    

The Vikings now stand alone atop the NFC North, with a game in hand.  This week, they'll host the Packers at the Bank, and their timing could not be more perfect.  The Vikings are ascending, and the Packers are self-destructing.

But, hey, It's hard to play football when someone insults Muslims right before kick off...

SKOL!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Thoughts on Paris

The horrific actions of Friday night in Paris have stirred all of us.  We know we don't have secure borders.  We know we have no way of stopping people that want to come to our country to do the same to us.  We now that there are substantive, viable, and successful ISIS recruiting activity going on right now, in our very own country.

The net result?  We know what happened in Paris will happen here.  It is just a matter of time.

It will be aided by weakness, political correctness, and self hatred.  Indeed, Salon just reported that the Paris jihad massacre just goes to show that the "right wing" needs to "modify their rhetoric."  Really.

Beyond that, on the very same day that Paris was brought to its knees, President Obama had the balls to claim that ISIS is contained and not gaining strength.  See the 1:00 mark.

 

His stated goal indeed is "success."  But success to a liberal is not to fight a war and to win.  Success is to capitulate, coddle, and try and get people to like us.  And that's not working, either.

We have weak leadership.  We have weak policies (both formal and social).  The only thing we have going for us is an armed citizenry. 

That's where this thing is going.  Wow.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Saturday Song Share: Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings - 100 Days, 100 Nights

There will be time to talk about Paris tomorrow.  For today, let's enjoy some Sharon Jones and just be

Friday, November 13, 2015

About the Prettiest Goal You'll See

Check out this honey of a move by the Minnesota Wild's Thomas Vanek:


Thursday, November 12, 2015

Modern Education

Continuing our theme from yesterday's post on how we love to hate white men, we get presented with an explanation of how we got here:



This is as gorgeous a piece of satire as it is scary.  Given what is happening at Mizzu right now, it's also damned applicable.


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Men Are Stupid, Part 856

As we've covered here previously, white men are treated as stupid in commercials.  Here is our latest installment, with a hat tip to my brother:



Ah, yes.  There is nobody that everyone hates more than the stupid, white, straight male, am I right?  I mean, when his son punches his father in the nuts, it was just so hilarious.  

Can you imagine the same ad with a black dad?  A mom?  A clearly gay male?  No, you can't.  Why is that?

Unfortunately, this is not relegated just to advertising.  Here's Senator Claire McCaskill taking on those evil men in a piece that is absolute comedy gold:



Again, could you see this "comedy skit" being written to tell women to shut up?  Or gays?  Or blacks?  No, men need to shut up, because everybody knows that me are stupid.

Sorry, folks, hate is hate.  Because you direct your vitriol at a former majority doesn't get you off the hook - you still hate.  Think about that.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Those Not in the Labor Force

With the latest economic news last week, the Obama administration grandstanded its great success in running the economy.  Massive jobs were created, and unemployment hit a low not seen in years and years.

One thing they're not telling you: They're data is not counting those not participating in the economy.  Here's what that looks like:

People are simply giving up on finding a real job in this economy, to the tune of nearly 20 million since 2005.  

With all those out of work, who is going to pay all the taxes for those not working and receiving benefits?

Monday, November 9, 2015

This Happened to Me

Outdoor Life magazine has as a staple of content called "This Happened to Me," where readers would send in their real life stories of how they faced a dangerous situation and what ultimately transpired.  It remains my favorite part of their magazine.

I've been fortunate that in nearly 45 years of outdoor pursuits, I only felt like I was in danger one time.  This past weekend that good fortune ran out.

My buddy Fuzzy was going deer hunting, but I was convinced of a good mallard flight on the north end of our lake.  Thus, Saturday morning I eschewed the comfort (and other hunters and dogs) of Gucci Point and headed out on my own to the north end.

I've hunted dozens and dozens of times by myself, and have never had an issue.  All of that was about to change.  While we rose very early Saturday morning, I decided to use Fuzzy's boat, as well as his motion decoys and both required some work before departing.  By the time I left the landing, I was leaving 15 minutes later than I had wanted.  That being said, I just had a small decoy spread to set, and the Yellow Dog and I should be able to work quickly.  Besides, Fuzzy's boat was equipped with a long shaft mud motor, which made quick work of the ride.  We'd be to our destination in minutes.

I found a good spot to set up in the reeds, and positioned the boat to begin setting decoys.  I'd start with the mallards, which were at the front of the boat.  Unfortunately, there were a lot of bulky Canada geese decoys between me and the mallards, so I stepped up on the gun box to tiptoe around the decoys and make my way to the front of the boat.

Unfortunately for me, the night had put a thick layer of frost on the boat, and as I was pulling myself up onto the gun box my foot slipped and I tumbled forward.  Fuzzy's boat is built for duck hunting, and sits only a little over a foot off the water.  Hence, as I spilled through space, I was aware that there'd be nothing to stop my fall over the side of the boat.

Things went into slow motion for me.  "NO, NO, NO!" is all I could think, and with my left had I was able to grab the side of the boat as I was headed over the side.  I immediately landed in water that technically was 4 feet deep, but the muck I was trying to stand it did not have a firm bottom.  I was up to my chest in frigid water, and my waders quickly filled.

While all of this what happening, the Yellow Dog became excited, and quickly jumped into the water after me.  Now we were both flailing in the cold water, looking for a way into the boat.  My thoughts now went to "this is not good, this is not good..."

I went hand over hand to the back end of the boat as there is a feature back there called "pods" which stabilizes the boat when under power.  The pods are basically at water level, and if I could pull the dog onto them, I could at least fix that portion of my mess.

My plan could not have gone any better, and I was able to get the Yellow Dog back out of the water and into the boat.  Now I just needed to get myself up.  With a quick pull, I got myself in with ease.  

I quickly dropped my waders and got the water out.  I then accessed my situation.  I was wet up to my chest, but I was safe.  I looked at the gathering daylight, and felt it was going to be a really good day for duck hunting.  Since the very best duck hunting is right at legal shooting time, and since I had already been through so much, I felt I would stay until I got too cold.  I would then take a quick 10 minute ride back to the landing, get out of my cold clothes, and consider my options.

I was able to set the decoy spread uneventfully, and settled into the boat blind to await my quarry.  I pulled out my phone from my pants, and was thrilled to see that it still worked.  Unfortunately, the remote control for Fuzzy's motion decoys that I had in another pocket was shot, and I felt lousy about ruining it for him.

I hunted for couple of hours, bagging three birds, and while I was definitely cold (it was about 40 degrees out), the blind had me out of the wind. and I was getting along.  However, by the end of my tenure, my body was shaking quite a bit, and I knew it was time to get back in.

As I was pulling out, I saw one of Fuzzy's motion decoys had a missing wing.  I was furious at myself - I had already ruined his remote, and now he'd need to order another new part.  I moved the boat toward the decoy with hope that the wing floated and was nearby.  When I arrived the decoy, I could see that the wing had indeed sunk, but it was on the frame which held the motion decoy out of the water.  If I could pull up the frame, I could grab the wing and at least salvage that.

I kneeled on the gun box and lifted the frame.  My plan was working great, but my grip on the frame was too high, and as I lifted I could not grab the wing.  Hence, I decided to lower the frame, get a better grip lower in the water, and try again.

As I lowered the frame. the friction of the water on the wing sitting upon it moved the wing, and it fluttered off the frame to the darkness below. I lunged at wing, thinking that my legs braced against the boat would hold me up.  Unfortunately, I didn't consider the impact that the cold had on them, and how much strength had been sapped.  I again had that horrible thought of "NO, NO, NO," as I tumbled over the side of the boat headfirst into the frigid lake.

I took a huge amount of water up my nose, and came up spitting out lake water.  I immediately grabbed the side of the boat and screamed "STAY!" at the Yellow Dog, who was still thankfully in the boat.  I again hand-over-hand made my way to the back of the boat to the pods, and felt like I could quickly extricate myself from the lake like I had done the last time.

My first attempt at pulling myself up went nowhere.  My legs were shaking so much that they were of very little use to me.  I tried again and again failed miserably.

I considered my options.  Calling for help vocally would not work as it was doubtful anyone would hear me, besides I was 15 minutes away from help under the best case scenario.  My  phone was in my pants, in my now water filled waders.  I could swim the boat to shore which was 200 yards away, but the mud would make things nearly impossible for me once I got close to shore.  I had to find a way to get in the boat.

I was really calm at this point.  I knew what I had to do, I just needed the strength to do it.  After one more attempt and a profanity filled pep talk, I was able to hoist myself onto a pod.  With a death grip on the boat, I attempted to move into the boat, but my legs really weren't working well.  Part of it was due to the shaking, and part of it was due to all of the water in my waders.  They were completely full of water, and puffed the waders out like MC Hammer pants.  

I made my way to the motor, started it, and made a bee line for home.

The boat goes about 15 miles an hour, and the wind I was driving into was another 15 MPH in my face.  The stinging it caused on my bare hands and head was horrible.

By the time I arrived at the landing, my shaking was really, really bad.  I quickly removed my waders, got the Yellow Dog into her crate in the back end of my truck, and drove my truck up the hill to the house above.  My breathing was in gasps, and I was in really bad shape, but I was home.  I immediately made my way inside; disrobing along the way, and hopped into the shower.

I sat in the shower about a half hour and tried to warm up.  I ultimately got out, dried off, and made my way upstairs for some warm clothes.  I put on some long underwear, a t-shirt, a sweat shirt, and some socks, but still I had the shakes.  I then took a space heater in our room, turned it on as high as it would go, and sat next to it.  While that was better, I was still shaking, so I pulled my sleeping bag off the bed and pulled it over me and the space heater.

That did the trick.  I finally started to warm up.  I told myself I wouldn't come out until I started to sweat, but I never got to that point as I got incredibly sleepy.  Figuring that I needed to remove the sleeping bag from the heater before I fell asleep and it caught fire, I rolled the bag back onto my bed, got in it, and fell asleep.

While I never felt that "I'm a goner," I did feel I was in deep trouble.  What I did was stupid, and risky beyond the pale.  I paid for it, and things could have gone a lot, lot worse.  

The lessons of all of this?  There are many:

  • There isn't a duck worth being stupid.  Take your time and be safe.
  • Moving around a frosty boat is stupid, especially when hunting alone
  • I should have gone in IMMEDIATELY after falling in the first time.  Even though I felt OK, I was getting myself in a really bad physical situation, and had no idea how adversely it was impacting me.
  • I need to get a waterproof pocket for my cell phone to allow me to call for help (and to allow me to avoid costly phone repairs). 
  • Driving out by myself, setting the decoys, then driving back and getting the dog is probably the smart thing to do.
  • Hunting alone should probably be relegated to safer locales (either land or shallow water with solid footing).
There are likely others as well.  

I've been hunting ducks for 40 years now.  In that time, I've never fallen out of the boat.  Ever.

Last Saturday I did it.  Twice.  I hope it never happens again.

yeldogpat-20