Saturday, December 13, 2008

Four Hours, Some Cleaning Supplies, And Many Happy Recipients

I wasn't to thrilled when my alarm went off at 6:15 am this Saturday morning. I wanted nothing more than to sleep in but my commitment to making a difference got me moving contrary to my body telling me "No". Today I was headed to a new volunteer project at a place called Pet Pal Rescue ( It's a no kill shelter that houses mostly dogs and cats but also other small animals.

We started the day helping the regular staff there do what they do everyday which is clean the kennels for all the puppies. Each pup has an inside kennel with a doggy door leading to an outside kennel. And once a day they are lucky enough to get let out into the play area outside of their kennel. It wasn't easy work. Every inch of their small concrete living quarter had to be scrubbed down. Half way through disinfecting the rows of kennels with my hands feeling somewhat raw from all the bleach and cleaner used in the bucket I asked myself why I had willingly signed up for this job. But that thought only lasted a split second as I thought about how much of a need there was to make these precious little dogs life that much better. They deserved a clean and healthy environment to call home just like you and I have when we walk through our front door.

The payoff was at the end though when all the hard work was finished. With so many dogs and cats needing a home I wanted to load them all up in the car and take them home. Of course that can't happen but I was able to spend another hour or so with them to make their day. After playing with the cats I chose to visit the dogs on the "sick" side and take them out one on one in the play area. The sick side is completely separate from the "healthy" side and is obviously where the puppies who have a medical problem stay until they are better. These dogs don't get any attention from potential adoptees due to their condition so I felt the need to try and make their day a little better.

I spent about 15 minutes each with 3 different dogs. Two of the pups that I took out were full of energy and so happy to have someone to run around with. And they all shared one thing in common and that was a hunger for love and affection. The first pup I took out would make anybody melt. He ran out all excited to the play area and went straight for my lap when I sat down. He curled up in a ball and wanted nothing more than to just be held and loved. And so there we sat for the full 15 minutes and all we did was comfort each other. And it's in a moment like this where silence is golden. I didn't know his story and he didn't know mine but what I did know is that this little guy was in total heaven for a small portion of his day. And I'm sure that times like this are few and far between for him in his life. And to be able to do something that has this kind of an impact on another living being is truly a blessing.

And that my fellow human beings is how important it is to take a small amount of time out of your day to make the world around you a better place. A little bit can go a long way. We are all born with the innate desire to love others and experience happiness by doing so. Sometimes we get a little and give a lot and are disappointed. But sometimes we give a little and get back more than we can ever ask for in life. Please do something positive after reading this. You and somebody else will be happier for it :)

Monday, December 1, 2008

The 2009 Challenge for You and Me

Once again I'd love to share a great idea of mine with all of you out there. I hope you're not rolling your eyes already wondering what I've come up with this time :) I'd also actually love to get some feedback and involvement from all two and a half humans that read my blog. Alright straight to the point...

I'm challenging you to join me in setting 3 goals that you want to accomplish in 2009. They can be whatever you want with only one condition that has to apply to each goal. Each goal's intended purpose needs to have an end result that positively impacts either yourself or somebody else or both. Your goals can be whatever you want them to be. They may be big or small. They may also be pertaining to your personal or professional life or they may pertain to yourself, your family, your friends, or any combination of the three. As long as the intended outcome is a positive impact on you or somebody else that is all that is required.

Here's my three goals for the year 2009:

1) Volunteer at least 100 hours in my local community
2) Get involved in a small group or class at my church
3) Take an active role in providing solutions to challenges that my national government faces by submitting at least one idea (entry) a month to my new president, Barack Obama, through his website -

There you have it. Now it's your turn to think of what you want to accomplish for next year. Feel free to share your goals by making a comment on this article or if you don't feel comfortable doing that then I'll let you off the hook this one time :) Just make sure you're working towards something positive next year and hopefully it'll make you and those around you better off.

And remember one thing - APATHY is your own worst ENEMY when it comes to making a difference.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I just wanted to wish all of my readers out there a very Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you have a safe and enjoyable holiday with your family and friends. And just a shout out to all of my family and friends to let you know how much I appreciate your generosity and support you've given me throughout the years. You are the best!

Now... time for football!! And good food!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

I Wanna Grow Up To Be A T-Shirt Thinker Upper

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Great & Historic Era Begins!

Yes We Did
Yes We Will...

continue to make our country and our world a better place as our new President Barack Obama encourages us to make a greater impact on everyone in the human race by seeking out our own individual opportunities to make a positive difference in those around us.  It's up to YOU.  It's up to ME.  It's up to ALL of us to get involved or stay involved in this greater movement to improve our own future and our own destiny.  I'm proud to have taken my own opportunities to volunteer in my community and will continue to do so and I hope that you all will do the same or continue to do so if you are currently involved in making a difference.  America needs you and you're determination.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Pumpkaween Time!

Thought you all would like to see some pumpkins that a friend and I painted for Halloween. The pictures aren't the best since they're from my cell phone but enjoy anyways :-)

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bend Over And No... K-Y Won't Be Provided!

I love freedom of speech. I hate insurance companies. And that led to a lovely combination when I wrote my check out for my annual condo insurance policy about two minutes ago. You see my policy went up nearly 14% from last year. Why is that you ask? I'm wondering the same thing.

All I've done is give these scum bags my money for the last 3 years to cover the inside contents (drywall and everything within my condo) in case of a catastrophic loss. All I've received for the last 3 years in return is absolutely nothing! Except for an increase in what I owe them for the services that they never provide. And I'm sure if they had to provide their services they'd raise holy hell not to provide them siting some ridiculous reason like because the GDP of Russia has increased in the last year due to increase in petro dollars that they can no longer cover my losses as listed in our agreed upon contract.

So instead of listing just the policy number of my "insurance" policy in the memo line of the check I just wrote I took the liberty of adding "INSURANCE SCAM CHARGE" in front of it. Now I know that that will make no difference in my renewal fee but at least it relieves some pent up anger for the largest scam artist industry in the entire world - insurance companies.

I think I'll go watch Sportscenter and be happy now :)

Running a Productive Democracy

It's not hard folks. I don't know if I'll ever live to see the day that a democratic process is run correctly. All you have to do is look at the big picture and follow the money. That's what it comes down to. Who's really in charge and who pays the bills. That should be the citizens but unfortunately it isn't. Here's the very simple steps for success in a democratic process:

1) Ban all forms of lobbying and special interest groups. Make them illegal. If any politician of any kind (federal, state, or local) is found to collect even 1 penny from them then their career in politics is immediately over. No second chances!

2) Make it MANDATORY for all governments (federal, state, and local) to balance their budget on a yearly basis and abide by this in the strictest of form. The state and local governments are already responsible for doing this. Time for the feds to buck up. Government should not be allowed to run on a Chinese credit card. If you can't fund a program you can't have the program!

3) Get rid of political parties. No Democrats or Republicans or Green Party or Reform Party. The only choice that is given to anyone when registering is to be an independent and to put forth your stance on each issue as you believe is correct. Your constituents will decide from there if they want you to represent them.

4) Get rid of the electoral college. Every single vote should count. Reform the voting process into a run off format. Instead of picking one candidate that you like you rank them - for example from 1 to 5 or whatever the case may be.

5) Politicians get paid based on their productivity and performance. By this I mean if you show up to work and vote on all bills then you get paid in full. If you go the extra effort and develop legislation that passes into law you get a reward "bonus" for that effort. We also need to base all elected public official's salary based on performance. We could use a variety of tools to gage their pay including the economic success of their nation/state/locality along with approval ratings from the citizens. The better the results in these categories the better their pay is. If the normal citizen doesn't show up to their job or if they produce poor performance results then that often leads to no bonuses or little to no raise or even worse termination. The same thing should go for our elected public officials.

6) A bill consists of one issue and one issue only. No pork barrel add ons. And every bill is made 100% transparent to the media and the citizens in a timely fashion (at least 2 weeks) before the floor vote is conducted. This gives all of us an opportunity if we so choose to speak up when we either like or don't like what we see and flood our representative's office with calls with that feedback.

You see it's not hard. With these simple yet strict rules a democratic government can flourish and be extremely beneficial to the citizens that it serves. My name is Dustin and I approve this message ;-)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A Piece of Cake

There are many things in this world that are definitely easy. Things like sleeping in, watching the lawn boy cut your grass, or eating a delicious bowl of swirl ice cream while deciding which on demand movie to order on a Saturday night. But one thing that's definitely NOT simple is completing the entire voting ballot on election day. Now bear with me folks because I know how sick and tired you are of all the political diarrhea now. It's all over the place and we have another month and a half left of it before the big day.

But I think the whole voting process should be simplified. I don't think voting in a competent matter should be so hard. I mean really why does picking our political leaders have to feel like a multiple choice pop quiz? If you're anything like me then you know exactly what I'm talking about. You rush into the polling place before work or maybe even on your lunch hour to fulfill your democratic obligation of what makes this free country so great. And you're faced with a ballot with scores of names and amendments and choices that you've never seen or even heard of before this critical moment. God help me so I don't guess wrong you're thinking. The fate of the very country is now riding on your shoulders at this crucial moment in time.

Of course everyone knows at least a little bit of info about the presidential and vice presidential candidates. If you don't then you're a complete moron or maybe you live in the deep forested regions of the Rocky Mountains in Wyoming. They don't have civilization there anyway right? Anyway, beyond the president and vice president you may have heard of a few of the senator, congressional, and gubernatorial candidates but what about all those other ones? Like the 2nd seat for city council in district 15 of providence 8 in the 3rd ward of the sub county of Leeward township. Exactly! What in the hell is that?! And of course there are 23 names of people you've never even heard of running for seat #2! See... now you feel my pain. Uugghh!!

So here's my solution. With all the technology available the majority of all precincts have went to an electronic touch screen for voting. This needs to be put in place in 100% of all voting precincts. Just add it on to the national debt if needed. We're Americans and credit cards are a way of life anyway. And besides the much advanced and yet simple process that I'm about to propose will allow millions upon millions of citizens make reasonable choices when voting so it'll be well worth it. Ok so onto the good stuff...

The next thing that needs to happen is that all candidates running for all offices across the United States have to submit their official positions on all major issues facing the American people to their respective election boards. Then a computer program is developed to create an electronic questionnaire of these major issues and the level of importance to the voter. The voter (you and me) will then fill out the short multiple choice questionnaire based on our personal beliefs before voting using the electronic voting machines. After we enter our answers to all the major issues then the computer automatically matches our personal views with the candidate for each position that most closely coincides with our choices. We can either vote for that candidate or choose to vote for any of the other candidates running for that particular position.

And that my friends would be a piece of cake!!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Working Wonders

Often times we all shy away from speaking about our faith and/or religious beliefs. The thought of the topic makes most of us cringe with fear that we may be over stepping our bounds with those around us. I'm certainly of the same mindset but today I'm gonna take that chance and let you in on a few small aspects of my own personal journey in this thing called faith.

I've never been a church person to be honest with you. Growing up a good little catholic boy I shuddered every Sunday morning when mom made us kids go to 8 am mass whether we liked it or not. I mean come on all you parents out there don't you realize that Sunday morning is better meant for SLEEP than religious rituals that bore your little child monsters to death?! Needless to say I was turned off from religion and have been for many years.

That was until I saw an advertisement before a movie on the big screen at my local AMC theatres. What?? An advertisement for church at the movie theatre you ask? Yes'em. It wasn't until after I saw the same ad about 3 or 4 times that I thought what the hell (I'm glad God forgives *smile*) I'll give it a shot. So off to this church I go and needless to say my first impression was not exactly church like.

As I walked in I was greeted with a warm hello which was expected but then I entered into the auditorium where the service was held. The first thing that hit me was a view of these HUGE banners hanging from the rafters just above the stage up front that had pictures of an expensive and fancy sports car and a very lavish upper middle class McMansion in the middle of America suburbia. Then to top it off was one word that completed the magnificent banner - "MONEY". At this point I'm thinking to myself "What is this church all about?!" But instead of jumping up, grabbing my wallet, and running for the hills in fear of them taking me for everything I got I managed to calm my inner thoughts and stay for the sermon. And I'm glad I did :-)

I've never been to a place of worship that was more inviting and tolerant of it's congregation as Harborside Church is. You see the reason for the big banners and all the hoopla is that each month the pastor takes one topic and discusses how God wants us to live our life with the right intentions in regards to this topic. I soon found out that the church was doing a series on how finances affects each and every one of us in our everyday life. That first month they reinforced to me how important it was to spend responsibly and not to forget that life isn't all about what we have in physical possessions but rather what we can offer each other whether it be in friendships, financial help, or spiritual relationships.

Looking back I certainly appreciate my mother's efforts to get us boys to our Sunday sermon. For in her attempts she was subconsciously instilling the basic principles and values that all Christians strive to live by even though her little boy didn't realize it at the time. As for my father he has consistently preached to us kids that he has one and ONLY one expectation of his sons in this life here on earth. This expectation is to be a good person regardless of the circumstances we find ourselves in in life. But I am just now understanding the concept of how to put both of these incredibly important lessons together in hopes to become the testament of love that the good Lord wants us to become everyday that we reside here on earth.

So almost a year later I have to say that I now can't wait for Sunday mornings to come along although I do get my much need sleep by picking the 10:45 am service to attend. I'm slowly growing in my spiritual journey to understand what the good Lord has in store for me. I'm certainly not even close to being an expert or even a half informed novice but that will come with time. For He is working wonders within me for what feels like the first time in my life.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Next Best Thing

The greatest thing about life is that there always seems to be something coming up for each one of us that gets us excited! It's that one thing that immediately puts a smile on your face and makes you forget about dragging your ass to work at 6am after a less than glamorous night of sleep. Maybe it's that vacation to paradise or a trip to the ballpark with all your close buddies or a surprise party you're about to throw for a friend. Either way, life for a moment is blissful :)

I happen to have two items of sinful exhilaration that get my juices flowing. The first of course is every man's weakness - NFL Fantasy Football! Ooooooohhhhhh yeaaaaaahhhhhh!! Another season begins in just over a month and I can't help but want to jump out of my skin when I think about the upcoming Sunday afternoons. I have a feeling The Wedgie Mafia (that's my team) is gonna have a special recipe for delivering a second championship trophy this year to it's mantle of fame.

For those of you who could care less about football ***don't think I didn't see you want to click off of this web page and onto another more exciting porn site or something*** I'll tell you a little about my second item of interest. That item is quickly becoming the volunteer work that I'm doing through Hands On Tampa Bay.

I've gone to about a half a dozen events so far all over the Tampa Bay area. I can honestly say that I've never felt better in my entire life for participating in something that goes well beyond myself and into the lives of those around me. I've done everything from cleaning up the grounds of a local museum to working in the kitchen of a homeless shelter to preparing individual meals for those who are shut ins. I've tried to make it a point to average at least one event per week and more if my schedule permits. And not only do I get to make someone else's day by my good deeds but I've also had the pleasure of working right alongside some incredibly dedicated and giving individuals that prove to me there's so many positive things happening in this world of pessimistic media.

Now that you're day dreaming of the next best thing in your life I hope I've brought a smile to your face by sharing my latest experiences. Remember there's nothing more rewarding in life than making a positive impact on somebody else :) And of course winning your fantasy football league!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

A Lot About Nothing

On my recent trip back to Minnesota my lovely friend Vinomommy mentioned to me how I never write about nothing in particular in my blog. She said my entries always required a lot of thought and that I should just spew out some useless information about my day. I think she's had a little too much Vino to drink myself.

So here ya go... My exciting day off started with buying a new oil and gas stock - Gran Tierra Energy Inc. (GTE). I noticed that 4 different expert analysts rated it as a moderate or strong buy. Well they were wrong at least for today. I didn't lose my life savings but I did lose enough money to fill up a tank of gas. Uuugghhh!! Hopefully, tomorrow it will come roaring back and I can retire from the drug trade :-)

It was also bathroom cleaning day. I have two of them and I have to admit that cleaning the bathroom is my least favorite room in the house to clean. I'm a neat freak too so it's not even like they are nasty dirty or anything. But just the fact that I have to put on my little yellow rubber gloves and decontaminate the 2 rooms whose sole purpose is removing human waste from the residence is harsh enough. Thank God it's over.

My only other excitement for the day was taking Reesee to the veterinarian's office for her yearly distemper shot. You know going to the vet's office is just like going to a regular doctor's office in a way. Why is it that as the patient we do our very best to show up on time or even early for that matter and then don't even get to see the first medical provider (vet tech or nurse) until at least like 30 minutes after the original appointment. I would have just made the appointment for 3:30 instead of 3:00 if I would have known I was gonna be staring at all the other people and animals in the waiting room. At least there are some cute cats and dogs to look at instead of just a bunch of geriatrics like the regular doctor's office.

Well there you have it Vinomommy. I probably still managed to make you think while reading this. Now where's my mashed potatoes and jelly?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sticks and Stones

You Suck!! As the saying goes... Sticks and stones can break my bones but words will never hurt me. This may be true for many people but it's all a matter of how you react to each situation put before you. If you're Bill Clinton then words seem to do a lot of damage as we've seen him lash out with that magnificent 5 year old temper of his time after time. Although I do have to give politicians as a whole the benefit of the doubt for putting themselves in the public eye. It certainly can't be easy to put yourself in a position where you know for a fact that the media is going to pick you apart and find every minuscule error that you've ever made in your life.

As far as my outlook on harsh words goes I prefer to remain as positive as possible. I think a lot of how an individual reacts to negative situations in life is directly related to their self esteem and independence or lack there of. Of course it's easy for me to sit here and say suck it up and feel good about yourself when I'm not the one receiving a tongue lashing. I'm usually the one on the other end giving the tongue lashing. I know that's one of my weaknesses since I'm a perfectionist. But you can come out ahead if you take those rough words that somebody else is dishing out to you and use it to your advantage. Obviously they wouldn't have put you down if you didn't have some sort of weakness that you could work on to improve. But then again there are some people who are just complete assholes and bitches. They can just suck my ars! But for everyone else who I ever get flack from in life I choose to turn that around and make myself a better person because of it. And you can too if you have the right mindset :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Your Health - Help Me Help You.

Aaahhh yes to be young and healthy again! You hear this all the time from those that are either not healthy and/or older than you. Your health is incredibly important to you and all too often taken for granted until you don't have it one day. And while there are many hardworking nurses, therapists, physicians, and pharmacists like myself doing their best to make you healthier when you need us your health is primarily your responsibility. Let me repeat this - your health is primarily YOUR responsibility.

There's a barrage of topics I could cover that could help you improve your health and well being but in this specific post I'm going to focus on something that drives all of us health care providers insane on a daily basis. And that is the lack of health information available in a organized fashion for us to use when treating a patient as yourself. Unfortunately information regarding a patient's medical history in the health care field is about as organized as the chaos that surrounds a Mardi Gras celebration on the streets of New Orleans in February. Currently all the different health care providers (physicians, hospitals, pharmacies, clinics, etc.) are not readily sharing your medical history with one another to make things easier when attempting to treat you. Why you ask? Because we don't know every place you've seeked out for medical attention and our computers don't "talk" to one another since they are all set up separately by each and every different health care facility. This invariably leads to a health care system that is under performing and extremely inefficient.

This is where you come in. You can be a major asset in helping us get you back on your feet again. The way you do this is by organizing your own Personal Health Record (PHR). A Personal Health Record is basically an organized file of information on your entire medical history. This can either be compiled the old fashioned way in a binder with a bunch of paperwork or better yet in an electronic form such as on your computer or online.

To learn more about the basics of a PHR you can watch this video

There are also a couple of podcast audio files available to explain what a PHR is and how it works here - and

I personally recommend starting a Personal Health Record in an online format. There are many different vendors out there offering free PHR sites. To help you get started in choosing an online PHR website I would suggest you read this short article with some very good tips on what to look for -

I would also use the website made by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) - I found this site extremely helpful and easy to use. You can search for a specific PHR vendor here -

I would like to make it clear that the majority of PHR websites are not HIPAA covered. That means that they are not legally required to follow the privacy act put in place by our federal government. Only actual health care providers and institutions (hospitals, clinics, insurance companies, etc.) are legally required to follow HIPAA rules and regulations. However, some of the websites do everything in their power to abide by all the rules and policies set forth by HIPAA. They are referred to as being HIPAA compliant. Make sure you take the time to actually read the websites privacy policy and that you are comfortable with the level of security and protection that they give.

With your help we can make health care much more efficient and eliminate costly mistakes because of the lack of information available about ourselves as patients when services are provided by the many talented health care providers out there. I urge you to take action now and spread the word about this wonderful opportunity so that one by one we can make our world a healthier place.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Fine Print

I'm sure I'll push a few of my readers buttons with this post but I'm happy to engage all those incredible minds out there reading this. Anyway, here goes...

I gladly and very patriotically filled out my application for the chance at being sequestered to jury duty in my current state of residence (FL) this morning. After I get done writing this I'll walk to my mailbox and drop my application off in the outgoing mail slot. As a side bonus I also get the right to vote in Florida! Woohoo!! It's funny how the fine print on my voter registration application says nothing about involuntarily giving up my mind and body at the state's discretion to serve on a jury whenever and wherever they please to use me. It has a lot of stuff on there about having a valid ID but nothing about the fact that you could serve on a jury at any time. I also never knew there were so many forms of ID you could use to vote - drivers license, military ID, passport, Sam's club membership, student ID, employee badge, paycheck, utility bill, retirement home ID, etc. But then it said later on that anyone over the age of 65 years old is exempt from having to show an ID. Hmmmm??? What's up with that? Does that mean whenever someone turns 65 that there's no possible way they could be an illegal alien or felon by virtue of age? I can't wait until I'm 65 because then according to my state government I can commit a felony and just show up to my voting precinct later on during election time and vote without them knowing who I am. Sweet!! Way to go Florida. You're on top of that one.

I haven't been registered to vote since I last presided in my home state of Montana. The last election I voted in was when Ross Perot ran for president. I remember because I voted for him. I thought his graphs were pretty slick. I was 18 and wasn't quite adept at looking at the whole picture. Ross would have made a swell president from a budget wielding patriarch standpoint but I have a feeling looking back on it that our foreign relations would have crumbled before our eyes if he had been elected. Anyhow, I'm getting sidetracked.... what I really mean to drive home today is that the political field over the last dozen years has been worthless and I finally feel that someone is capable of heading us in the right direction - Barack Obama.

He's exactly what a leader should be. He believes that the only way to make massive change is to start from the ground up. I've yet to hear any politician genuinely state this and believe in it. I, myself, have always told others that I'm only as good of a pharmacist as my best technician allows me to be. You know a great leader listens and acts on behalf of the little people. A great leader shuns big money and radical special interests groups and backs this up by not accepting funds from these people. A great leader formulates plans for the issues most affecting the people he leads. A great leader acknowledges that he is human when he screws up and accepts responsibility for his actions in an effort to learn from his mistakes and move forward. A great leader says "Yes we can!" when others say we'll try our best. And most importantly a great leader is able to inspire and motivate everyone working with him to collaborate for the good of the whole even when it means giving up portions of their own interest. This is Barack Obama for those of you who don't know. This is the voice of the next President of the United States of America.

I find it odd that the only negative things people can come up with on Barack are about mistakes that other people who aren't him have made just because he was associated with them years before. Well that makes complete sense now doesn't it? Why don't we blame you for everything wrong in your life because your uncle was an alcoholic or because a high school friend of yours smoked pot. Are you feeling a little bit chastised by this? Good! For those of you who believe in this form of attack you should be. My favorite is how everybody attacks Barack's lack of experience. I once came straight out of pharmacy school and within a month of being a newly licensed pharmacist was placed in the position of pharmacist in charge of a brand new pharmacy that had to build it's business from the ground up. My store was one of the top performing stores in then entire St. Louis metro area with respect to projected goals put forth by my company for us to meet. Imagine that. A rookie pharmacist leading a successful team to victory day in and day out. I'm a true believer that experience means nothing without the ability to problem solve and make solid decisions. God gave some people the natural ability to lead and display great judgement on behalf of those around him and the situations at hand. Barack Obama is the epitome of this very talent.

Of course our alternative is a long time veteran named Hillary Clinton or John McCain. Don't get me wrong I have respect for the fact that they've made some positive contributions throughout their lives to the good of America. But they aren't fit to be president. Both of them accept and count on big money from PACs and special interest groups to fund their campaigns. I find it more than amusing how Hillary maintains the mindset of a 3 year old throwing a temper tantrum every time something doesn't go her way in life. Now that's exactly what kind of leader we want isn't it?! I scoff at her mere picture. She is the same old political bullshit from same old school of kiss ass D.C. politics. And I like how McCain shows the judgement skills of a mentally retarded monkey by being adamant about staying involved in an all out civil war in Iraq while continuing to watch our national debt skyrocket out of control by funding the war over there and by continuing the wealthy tax cuts that our beloved Bush family put into effect. My answer - Save the trees and get rid of the Bushes (George and John)! Enough said. Barack is the only logical choice!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Needy and The Needed

What would your life be like if nobody needed you? It's not often that we as individuals think of this in our chaotic world of rush hour traffic, drive through dabbles, overfilled schedules, and instant mashed potatoes. I'm just to busy, to busy, to busy most of us say. And I say isn't it nice to be smiling in the midst of all that 21st century madness.

But what if nobody called you? If nobody texted you? If there were no emails in your inbox? If nobody asked you to help them out? If your kids or roommates weren't there to drive you bloody insane? What if there was nothing but silence? Aaahhhh.... finally a moment of peace and prosperity right!? Until it turns to boredom and worse yet loneliness and a hint of despair.

The basic human instinct of being needed by others is so vital and simple in nature to each of us. Yet it's taken for granted by many of us everyday as we get flooded with a half a dozen requests coming from every which way but Sunday. I myself have become very appreciative of this fact over the last 3 1/2 years while living in Florida. For those of you who don't know I moved to the Tampa Bay area without knowing a single soul. I was after my perfect destination of weather, outdoor activities, and wonderful friends. What I've found out is that the weather and outdoor activities were a given. But putting a midwestern boy in the midst of a circus of east coast people lended itself to many challenges when it came to the friends part. All I can say is that I certainly appreciate my family and friends way more than they could ever imagine now. It's also a great thing that I'm good at entertaining myself A LOT and am definitely looking forward to migrating back up north when the bursted housing bubble inflates itself again.

Now my intent is not to receive sympathy or pity from anyone. I've never been one to make excuses for myself and my choices. And I do have a lot of family and friends who really care about me and love me. They just happen to be a long ways away and love the fact that I can provide them a vacation spot in the midst of a white out blizzard in February :) I am, however, going to enlighten you on a new adventure of mine as I play out my final few years here in the Sunshine state. In a quest to quench my own need of feeling needed what better way to fulfill that than by reaching out to others who are even needier than I. Have I completely confused you yet? If not then keep reading and I'm sure I'll manage not to disappoint you.

Hands on Tampa Bay ( is a volunteer organization affiliated with the United Way of Tampa Bay and is the largest volunteer based group in the area. They have hundreds of volunteers and provide thousands of hours of help to those in need throughout our local community. And now they have me! Or should I rephrase that as I have them! In either case, I hope to make this a very positive experience which will keep me from staring at the inside walls of my townhouse for hours on end during my days off and also allow me to help others with much bigger problems than I could ever dream of having.

So the next time your second phone rings while your in the midst of boiling spaghetti for a head count of 5 and you find Fido tugging at your leg with his leash at hand all the while little Johnny is yelling from the bathroom to help him make Mr. Hankey swim down alligator alley just take a minute and remind yourself how awesome it is to feel needed :-)

Friday, January 25, 2008

Get the Facts When Voting

For anyone who is taking an interest in the upcoming 2008 general election I would highly encourage you to find out the facts behind each of the candidates instead of relying on our "wonderful" media to form your opinion for you. I've personally looked at various individual candidates websites which has been helpful but I've found a phenomenal website that has more information than you could possibly dream of.


This website is run by a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization of almost all volunteers located high above in the Rocky Mountains in my very own state of Montana! They refuse to take money from any PAC's, special interest groups, lobbyists, or large corporations. Information provided by them includes candidates voting records, endorsements, public statements & speeches, background information, and even the sources of all the money they get to finance their campaigns. So if you'd like to know that John McCain drives a Cadillac CTS while Mike Huckabee prefers a 2007 Chevy Tahoe it's right at your fingertips. Or how about the fact that Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards' number one donors came from the legal (law/lawyer) industry while Rudolph Giuliani received the majority of his donations from donors in the Securities and Investment industry.

There's also a lot of useful information such as how to register to vote in your state. You can also find out how a primary works and what a caucus actually is. I hope you all find this website useful and educational. Remember the more you know the better decision you can make in November.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Clear as Mud = America's Beloved Democracy

If you're anything like me then understanding the American Democratic process is about as simple as sputtering through characters 127 to 189 of the Chinese language using a British accent in front of a group of "no hablas ingles" Mexicans. Nearly impossible is what I'm trying to say in other words.

For example, all those incredibly gifted politicians who manage to balance our national budget every year have a very interesting way of tallying up the final votes in our primaries and caucuses. Iowa produced the following results for the Democrats:

1st Place - Barack Obama - 940 votes
2nd Place - John Edwards - 744 votes
3rd Place - Hillary Clinton - 737 votes

But we all know that for some unexplainable reason that votes don't actually count for real in our democracy because the official results are determined by the total number of delegates a candidate receives. And who are these "delegates" anyway? Do delegates major in voting in college? Maybe that's why they have the expertise to elect a president for all of us peon citizens who think our opinions matter. I wonder what a typical college day of classes are like for delegates? I bet they start off with Lobbying 101 their freshman year and then proceed to more advanced courses like How to Cover Up Political Scandals 560 their senior year. Anyhow why don't we examine the number of delegates each Democratic candidate won in the Iowa caucuses:

1st Place - Barack Obama - 16 delegates
2nd Place - Hillary Clinton - 15 delegates
3rd Place - John Edwards - 14 delegates

Hmmmmm..... Clear as mud right? So getting 2nd place in the popular vote means you actually get the shaft in what actually counts for making your run for the White House. But then I thought to myself that maybe it's just those crazy Iowan's who can't count correctly and like to make up their own rules if they don't like the outcome of the game. Iowa does stand for Idiots Out Wandering Around you know.

As we head off to the New Hampshire and Nevada maybe we can get a clearer picture of how this whole American pastime of voting works. Here's the results:

New Hampshire

1st Place - Hillary Clinton - 112,251 votes
2nd Place - Barack Obama - 104,772 votes
3rd Place - John Edwards - 48,681 votes

1st Place(tie) - Hillary Clinton & Barack Obama - 9 delegates
2nd Place - John Edwards - 4 delegates

Nevada *98% precincts reporting

1st Place - Hillary Clinton - 5,355 votes
2nd Place - Barack Obama - 4,773 votes
3rd Place - John Edwards - 396 votes

1st Place - Barack Obama - 13 delegates
2nd Place - Hillary Clinton - 12 delegates
3rd Place - John Edwards - 0 delegates

I'm starting to get that feeling I had when I took my first semester of calculus in college from a Russian professor who spoke with an accent as thick as the underground mafia and failed to provide subtitles for his corresponding lessons. Are things a little cloudy for you too?

Wait a second! I completely understand now. This whole political process makes our $9 trillion national deficit all make sense now. Is there a CPA running for president this year? Where's Ross Perot when you need him?!

Good luck at the polls everyone! May the electronic voting booths be kind to you. I think I'll vote for Bill Clinton so his wife loses her delegates to Dennis Kucinich which will put John Edwards and Barack Obama in a tie for first & fourth place right behind their arch rival Mike Gravel in tenth place with -2 votes.