Wednesday, February 28, 2007

I like girls bhay-gn-flay-vn... or "Oh Dear, I've been RE-DORKULATED!"

In a stunning feat of stating the obvious, the Chicago Tribune recently reported that women are a mystery to scientists.

A group of white lab-coated, bad haircut, soda-bottle glasses-wearing Poindexters converged on Chicago last week to try to figure out why they can't get dates.

A clue to the conundrum might be in the last sentence of this quote from the Tribune's story (emphasis added by me)
Researchers presenting their findings at the society's sixth annual meeting are still trying to figure out which hormones and neurotransmitters make sexual arousal possible, where in the brain orgasm takes place, and which nerves control the genital organs. Much of their work is being done in rats.
Now, if these guys had spent more time at the junior high dances and less time playing Dungeons&Dragons, they might realize (like the rest of us lady magnets do) that the way to turn on the honeys isn't by poking nerve endings with syringes full of weirdo chemicals (okay, that does work for some of the ladies), but by growing a bushy mustache and drinking Colt45.

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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Inconvenient indeed

I don't watch the Oscars. I consider the whole affair a mass masturbatory event for the entertainment industry.

All the same, when I saw that AlGore's An Inconvenient Truth had won the Oscar for Best Documentary, I wanted to offer a hearty congratulations to AlGore and the film's director Davis Guggenheim.

But the Tennessee Center for Policy Research has nominated AlGore for an award for great achievements in hypocrisy.

After pouring over records from the Nashville Electric Service, the group found that AlGore's palatial Nashville mansion uses twice the electricity in one month than the typical household uses in an entire year.
Gore’s mansion, located in the posh Belle Meade area of Nashville, consumes more electricity every month than the average American household uses in an entire year, according to the Nashville Electric Service (NES).

In his documentary, the former Vice President calls on Americans to conserve energy by reducing electricity consumption at home.

The average household in America consumes 10,656 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year, according to the Department of Energy. In 2006, Gore devoured nearly 221,000 kWh—more than 20 times the national average.

Last August alone, Gore burned through 22,619 kWh—guzzling more than twice the electricity in one month than an average American family uses in an entire year. As a result of his energy consumption, Gore’s average monthly electric bill topped $1,359.

Since the release of An Inconvenient Truth, Gore’s energy consumption has increased from an average of 16,200 kWh per month in 2005, to 18,400 kWh per month in 2006.

Gore’s extravagant energy use does not stop at his electric bill. Natural gas bills for Gore’s mansion and guest house averaged $1,080 per month last year.
This is just further evidence for my theory that Liberal politicians are not only arrogant and pretentious, but hypocritical as well.

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YouTube Tuesday: God, Inc.

Imagine what it would be like to work in the corporate offices of God.

Pretty cool, right? Big break rooms, lots of parking spots, fun, uplifting people to work with. Well, not according to the producers of God, Inc.

This is probably the best YouTube serial since Chad Vader. Great writing, competent acting (for YouTube anyway) and an interesting concept. There are currently six "webisodes" available. Here's the pilot...

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Monday, February 26, 2007

My advice to you is to start drinking heavily.

The national organization of Delta Zeta sorority has taken the bold step of returning to the roots of the sorority system by kicking out members of the DePauw University chapter.

According to The New York Times
Worried that a negative stereotype of the sorority was contributing to a decline in membership that had left its Greek-columned house here half empty, Delta Zeta’s national officers interviewed 35 DePauw members in November, quizzing them about their dedication to recruitment. They judged 23 of the women insufficiently committed and later told them to vacate the sorority house.

The 23 members included every woman who was overweight. They also included the only black, Korean and Vietnamese members. The dozen students allowed to stay were slender and popular with fraternity men — conventionally pretty women the sorority hoped could attract new recruits. Six of the 12 were so infuriated they quit.

The booted sorority sisters vowed not to take the slight lightly. According to my many inside sources* the sorority members are working on revenge tactics that include taking over the upcoming homecoming parade with a pirate float, and winning the Greek Olympics in order to start their own sorority.

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*© Greg Beck at Death's Door

You dirty rotten filthy stinking animals

I try to be moderate. I try to be tolerant.

I try to practice the libertarian "live and let live" philosophy that I tell myself I believe in.

I don't want to live in a nanny state. I think people should focus more on their responsibilities than their rights.

When someone proposes banning a breed of dog, or banning advertisements for fast food, my first response is "Whoa now, let's not be so hasty!"

But you science-damned smokers make it really fucking hard.

I want to be against the proposed metro area ban on smoking in public places. I want to oppose measures like Germany's proposed ban on smoking while driving, which -- let's face it -- is the next logical step in this country.

But you dirty smokers make it impossible for me not to turn socialist on this issue.

It's bad enough that I have to walk through a cloud of cigarette smoke when I get to work. Science forbid you use the designated smoking area.

It's bad enough that I can't stop at any freakin' intersection in this city without looking out my car window and seeing a pile of cigarette butts in the gutters.

The last straw happened this weekend as we were returning from an out-of-town trip. I'm driving down I-35, eager to get home, when a disgusting Selma Bouvier driving a rusted red Oldsmobuick flicked her butt out her window.

It landed squarely with a flash of burning ash on my windshield, sending my internal dialog into a stream of obscenities.

You dirty, rotten, filthy, stinking, vile, detestable animals. You know how abominable those butts are. You'd rather throw them out your window than sully your own rust bucket with them.

It's obvious that smokers can't handle their responsibilities as smokers (let alone functioning citizens of our society). I hate to say it, but you can now sign me up as a supporter of any and all anti-smoking proposals that might be in the works.
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Friday, February 23, 2007

Friday Blogthing: Not in a NY state of mind

Yeah, this is about right. No offense to the east coasters, but I'll take San Francisco over NY any day of the week.

You Are 32% NYC

Okay, so maybe you've been to NYC. But you probably really live in Connecticut.

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Headlines: 1st Beaver spotted in NYC in 200 years

This is great news for NYC.
Here's the key quote from the story:
"It had to happen because beaver populations are expanding, and their habitats are shrinking," said Dietland Muller-Schwarze, a beaver expert at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse. "We're probably going to see more of them in the future."
This is true, even in these parts. A casual stroll through Westport on any Friday or Saturday night shows how even the furriest beavers seem to be bursting out of their surroundings.

Fortunately, there has never been a shortage of beaver in Kansas City, although I've heard that it's been at least 200 years since Larry Moore has seen one.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Tossing your chicken

I haven't mentioned the defeat my alma mater suffered to the KU Jayhawks last weekend. It got a lot of press around these parts and marks the 34th time K-State has lost to KU at Bramlage Coliseum.

It was a good game and the 'Cats, who took the lead into halftime, showed that they're getting better.

But the bigger controversy came before the game when some of the students tossed a chicken onto the court, a mockery of the KU mascot. There is some discrepancy on whether the chicken died when it hit the court or if it died whilst being smuggled into the arena.

Nevertheless, at some point it died. And this offended some people with a softer constitution. The whole stunt was a call back to the days of Ahearn Fieldhouse when the chicken toss was commonplace during games with big rivals. As such, it plucked the more nostalgic of my heartstrings.

Don’t get me wrong, the death of the chicken was tragic. But in my defense, I've really cut back on the amount of chicken tossing I do.

I remember when I was in junior high and high school, I used to toss my chicken four or five times a week if not more. One time, my mom walked in on me tossing my chicken, talk about embarrassing!

When I got to college, I became interested in other things. My social calendar got in the way of chicken tossing and to be honest, when you're going out with a hot Gamma Phi Beta, you don't need to rely on tossing your chicken for thrills. Nevertheless, I still would toss my chicken every once in a while when the mood would strike me.

Since I got married, I find that I very rarely toss my chicken. And when I do I'm very discreet about it. It's just not something that a man of my age and social stature should make a habit of doing.

But I have to admit, there is still a guilty part of me that occasionally enjoys a good chicken toss.

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I could've been a terrorist

One of the TV shows I watch a lot is Boston Legal.

When it first came out a season or two ago, I really liked it. This season? Not so much. I still watch it because there's nothing better during that time slot and what the hell else am I going to do if I don't watch TV.

But the story lines are just getting silly and goofy (a big, black transvestite and a lawyer stuck in a Buzz Lightyear costume? Puleeez!). I should expect as much from a show staring Candice Bergen.

Anyway, one recent episode featured William Shatner's character, Denny Crane, denied air travel to Hawaii because his name is on the federal no-fly list, suing the Office of Homeland Security.

I don't remember much about the episode (it was pretty forgettable) aside from the fact that I kept rolling my eyes at the overly melodramatic diatribes foisted by the actors-playing-lawyers. I guess what I find so irritating is the writers' penchant for finding any issue that is the tiniest bit topical and blowing it way out of proportion for the sake of soap opera drama.

The only reason I bring this up now is that I learned last weekend that I might be a terrorist.

That's right, I've been Denny Craned.

I found out about it when my attempt to use an airline's self-ticketing kiosk at KCI was thwarted by a message to "Please see the ticket agent."

So I had to go back and wait on line to see the airline worker. He took my confirmation number and punched it into his computer. A puzzled look crossed his face as he punched a few more keys and asked for my driver's license.

Then and exclamation of "Aha." A few keystrokes later and I had my boarding pass.

"It turns out your name is on the Federal No-Fly list," he told me.

Immediately I thought to myself "Damn! They're on to me." But before I had a chance to shout "Derka Derka Mohammad jihad!" and make a run for short-term parking, the ticket agent said "I've corrected this. I just had to check your ID and make sure you are who you say you are. In the future when you book your flights you might want to include you're middle initial."

So, it turns out that I'm cleared for takeoff. And I didn't even get to sue Homeland Security.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007


My Supermodel Wife and I are hosting one of her relatives and spouse this week.

Our family member needs a liver transplant and is in town for a battery of tests that takes a week to complete. Since they are family, we insisted that they bunk at our house so they don't have the added expense and hassle of a hotel.

We knew going into the deal that it would be a huge pain in the ass for us. But they're family, and family sticks together. I mean, having a liver transplant is no picnic either. Right?

Still, after half a week I've gained some valuable insights that I'll share with you now:
  • They say family and fish stink after three days. Well, I can tell you that when the family member is a smoker, the stink begins immediately. There's a hovering haze of stale smoke stench hanging in our house*. I swear I don't know how smokers can stand to be around themselves.

  • The amount of time the aforementioned smoke stench stays in your house is directly proportional to the number of cigarette butts left on you patio and driveway. Thanks again, smokers.

  • I have developed a theory (though the first part is still untested by me personally) that the one thing worse than having a camera shoved up your ass is sitting at the dinner table hearing someone tell the story about getting a camera shoved up their ass.

  • I have also developed a theory (also untested) that there is no polite way to say "Can't you shut the fuck up for five minutes! I'm trying to watch Dances With Wolves and you're making it impossible to read the subtitles!"
Hey, this is just me venting. Like I said, we wouldn't want them to stay anywhere else. And, to keep it in perspective, this will all be over in a couple of days. It better be anyway, or I'll cut out my own liver and do the transplant at home.

*How's that for alliteration!

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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

YouTube Tuesday: Leave it to Beever

Every few months I get cc'd on an email that attaches the art of Julian Beever.

Beever's art is a well-known Internet meme. The chalk drawings he makes on city streets feature amazingly accurate perspective studies. When viewed from the proper angle, his subjects seem to be emerging from a swimming pool dug into the street, or mining gold from the sidewalk.

When viewed from the wrong angle, they appear distorted and misshapen, impressing upon the viewer the amount of foresight and non-linear thinking required to make the drawings.

I've always wondered how he does it. But now I don't have to, since he has placed a video of his process on YouTube:

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Saturday, February 17, 2007

By the Dead Seaside

I mentioned previously that my Supermodel Wife and I went to Union Station Wednesday to see the famous Dead Sea Scrolls.

We were both excited to see this exhibit. It has certainly been ballyhooed in KC since it opened a few weeks ago. The actual experience didn't necessarily live up to my expectations. Don't get me wrong, there were some very positive points. But there were a few things that left me thinking it could have been much better.

First, despite the millions of dollars spent to bring the exhibit to KC, despite all of the preparation and publicity, when we actually arrived at Union Station the admission process didn’t say "We're excited you’re here and we want you to see this exhibit."

There was a single person selling tickets at the ticket counter. I imagine they typically don't need more than one person on a Wednesday morning at Union Station. From what I've heard, foot traffic can get pretty non-existent there. But one would think that the heightened traffic drawn by the Dead Sea Scrolls would have been anticipated, and our 20-minute wait on line could have been avoided.

When it was finally our turn with the ticket agent, we were told that the 11 a.m. was the earliest time we would be able to view the exhibit. I’m not sure why the viewings were scheduled in blocks like this, perhaps to limit the size of the crowd inside the exhibit. If that’s the case, why not just keep track of how many people go in and come out, thus ensuring a constant number of visitors at anyone time.

But hey, what do I know.

Once we actually were admitted to see the exhibit, it was pretty darn good. There was a good amount of archaeological and historical background detailing how the scrolls were found, how they were preserved, who wrote them and hid them, etc.

And thanks to a device called an "audio wand" – essentially an mp3 player with a keypad to dial up each audio track – those of us who are really lazy didn't have to read the comments throughout the exhibit because they were being read to us.

The scroll fragments themselves were very different from what I expected. Maybe it's too much Fiddler on the Roof, or Indiana Jones, but I had this vision in my mind of a Tora-type document rolled around wooden handles a couple of feet long. Of course I expected them to be highly deteriorated and barely legible after 2000 years.

The actual scrolls are only a few inches high, about the dimension of a roll of toilet paper. Though deteriorated by time, the writing that is left is exquisite. It is very clear and highly legible (assuming, of course, that you're fluent in ancient Aramaic or Hebrew).

Despite the hassle of getting in to see the scrolls, it was pretty amazing and awe inspiring to stand inches away from ancient texts that were written before the time of Black Jesus.

Should you go see the scrolls? If you're really into history as I am, go see them. If you don’t mind a few hassles, go see them. If you can afford the price of admission without sacrificing your Friday night weed money, go see them. And if you don’t mind hanging out with a bunch of oxygen tank breathing, walker using, slow moving geezers, go see them.

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Thank science* it’s Saturday.

It was a hellacious week at work, and I’m on the road today through Monday for business travel. But now, at 7 a.m. on a Saturday, sitting in the airport terminal waiting for my flight to board, I finally have time to post an update. (Oh great! They just announced an hour delay due to snow in Chicago. Science* dammit!).

I say it was a rough week at work, and it was (and still is). The one notable exception was Wednesday. In case you weren’t there, Wednesday was Valentine’s Day. My Supermodel Wife and I started a new tradition this year: We both took a day of vacation to make sure we spent some really good quality time together (more on what we did later).

We gave each other the gift of ourselves.

I know what you’re thinking (you cheeky monkey) and your right, there was some of that later in the evening. But this was one of the best day’s ever. I can totally see why people would want to win the lottery and retire early.

*In compliance with the new Kansas State Board of Education science standards, we will no longer refer to the deity in such usages on this blog.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Another headline I couldn't resist

Blind snake rediscovered after 100 years
A rare blind snake has been rediscovered a century after its last sighting. The snake, which looks like a long, skinny pink worm, was only known from two other specimens, both discovered in 1905.

“They’re really rare because they’re subterranean,” said blind-snake expert Van Wallach of Harvard University who described the new specimen. “You can’t just go out anytime you want and collect these things. You can dig forever and never find them.”
It turns out that a UMKC biologist has discovered another specimen of this blind, pink snake which hasn't seen the light of day in 100 years in Larry Moore's pants.

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YouTube Tuesday: Madame B.

Okay, with recent YouTube posts about weed smoking, geezer giggling, and Super Bowl shuffling, I really feel like it's time to class up the joint a little.

Luckily, I've come across this really cool animated rendition of Puccini's Madame Butterfly.

It's amazing that the mere puppets can be used, along with Puccini's music, to express such great human beauty and tragedy (although the puppet sex scene made me blush a little and may not be safe for work). I especially admire the artist going "off the canvas" for the suicide scene at the end. Very poetic.


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I caught yesterday’s episode of KCUR’s Up To Date on the way in to work today (the podcast version of course. Radio? C’mon, who listens to the radio these days. This is the future people, get with the times!).

Anyway, I just wanted to say a sincere congratulations to local blog boss Cara (from …Just Cara) for being the smartest person in the room. The discussion focused around the role of blogs in political discussion

Also in on the conversation were some pointy-headed professor from KU and Tony B. of Tony’s Kansas City (what hack). But it was Cara who put the whole thing in perspective when she noted that the majority of bloggers are basically just putting their perspective out there because the traditional media doesn’t provide an open forum for discussion.

Her analogy of a personal blog to a bar room conversation is very apt (especially given the bar room vernacular most bloggers use, something you damn-sure wouldn’t find in your local newspaper).

My personal view is that so-called political blogs are pretty useless in the grand scheme of things. Don’t get me wrong, they server a purpose for the author to vent, and even to test their views. But the vast majority of people posting and consuming political thought are doing so for reinforcement. They want to see that other people think the same way they do.

It’s basically a big circle jerk (to employ the aforementioned bar room vernacular).

And don't even get me started on the idiot Joan McCarter, who stated on the air that she knows the truth and always tells the truth. This just proves my point that the biggest Liberal bloggers are not only arrogant and pretentious, but hypocritical as well.

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Monday, February 12, 2007

Taking it too far

I gasped when I saw this headline:

Portugal Drafts Liberal Abortion Law

I mean, I hate Liberals as much as the next guy, but aborting them all? Seems a little extreme to me. Dang!

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Friday, February 09, 2007

Friday Blogthing: You just never know with me

This quiz was amazingly accurate for me. Just so you know, it's really tough to get on my bad side. But don't fool yourself, you don't want to be on my enemies list. I will totally make you regret it with my patented atomic silent treatment.

You Sometimes Hold a Grudge

You aren't exactly vengeful, but you're not going to forget when someone wrongs you.
And while you'll forgive the small things, you don't hand out too many second chances to people who really screw up.
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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Movie Mini Review: A History of Violence

Title: A History of Violence


Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello, Ed Harris, William Hurt

Plot summary:
Tom Stall (Mortensen), the quiet down-to-earth owner of a small town diner, is thrust into the limelight when he foils a robbery/murder attempt in his diner with some quick thinking and even quicker pistol play. But the attention draws some not-so-savory characters to the diner who think they know Stall from a previous life.

My thoughts:
This is another one of those movies I wanted to see in the theater but was unable to because I'm an old geezer with job and family ties that keep me from doing anything fun (not really).

But unlike with The Life Aquatic, after seeing finally A History of Violence I'm not disappointed that I missed the "opportunity" so shell out $30 bucks to see it in the theater.

The premise is the film is great: Why would a mild-mannered small-town family man be so good at killing people. Did he just have one of those "heroic" moments when you just react without thinking and save the day? Or is there something sinister in his past, something that mob captain Carl Fogerty (Ed Harris) knows about and is keen to repay Stall for.

For about half the movie, the director keeps you guessing about who's telling the truth. Is it Fogerty, and Stall is really a reformed hit-man trying to get out of "the life"? Or is Stall telling the truth and it's all a case of mistaken identity.

The acting is solid (the main characters are played by journeymen actors) and the photography is pretty darn good. The violence in most cases is real enough to be shocking, but not so gratuitous as to be distracting. But I think the director missed opportunities in the that could have added layers of interest to the story.

For one thing, there was a superficial look at what happens to the erstwhile wimpy son who suddenly nuts up to the school bullies when his dad becomes a hero. I think a deeper examination of this character could have been satisfying.

And there are some scenes that just plain don't make sense, like the love/rape scene on the wooden stairs of the family home. Or the final scene when Stall returns home to the family dinner table after going on a killing spree and sits down without saying a word.

But the movie falls apart for me midway through, when it is blatantly revealed that Stall is in fact a hit man, brother of a Philadelphia mob boss who has put a price on his head. From there, the movie becomes the predictable "I gotta kill all my enemies or never live in peace" action flick.

I can't help but think that it would have been smarter to never clarify whether Stall was actually the mob guy, but have him kill the mobsters anyway.

So, I rank this movie "Good to watch on TV, but glad I didn't pay to see it."

Favorite quote:
"Any last words before I blow your brains out you miserable prick?"

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Tuesday, February 06, 2007

YouTube Tuesday: Everybody likes Night Court

It doesn't take much to figure out what these guys are smoking when they're producing Pothedz Couch.

This Muppet-Show-meets-Cheech-and-Chong home video series isn't something you'd want to show the kids, but for some reason it cracks me up. Especially this episode where the main character, Pothed, takes a peyote trip down memory lane to the first time he met his person (the guy controlling the puppet).

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Friday, February 02, 2007

It sounds to us like you aren't taking this seriously

I love seeing these two guys sticking it to the so-called news media.

After taking the fall and being arraigned for the Aqua Teen Hunger Force publicity-stunt-turned-terrorist-alert, Peter Berdovsky, 27, and Sean Stevens, 28, gave their official statement the other day.

I mean really, what do the reporters expect. Of course they expect the two dudes to play their game and give them a quote so that they can complete the story they wrote a couple of hours ago.

Ironically, most of the so-called reporters were missing the real story... that these guys were arrested for a PR disaster (or success?) and yet their talking gibberish outside the courthouse.

I say balls to them, way to make the media look like idiots (as if that's difficult).

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Friday Blogthing: That's my name, biotch!

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
The Right Reverend Emaw the Carnivorous of Lesser Cheese Winston
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title
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Thursday, February 01, 2007


It's February. You may know it as Black History month, a time of great reflection and introspection for my people, the Black Irish.

But let's face it. The Irish have never been worth the potatoes we eat in terms of culture. Sure, there have been some notable authors, few flash-in-the-pan musical acts, and really creepy horror characters.

But really the story of the descendants of a small, cold, rocky island in the North Atlantic isn't worth and entire month. And besides, there's always St. Patrick's Day.

No, let's focus on largely ignored plight of the black Americans of African decent. Actually, I'm being a bit flippant, which isn't fair. I do want to take a look at black history from a semi-serious perspective. Specifically, I want to look at recent black history.

F-Bombs recently posted at The Philosopher King a righteously indignant rant against some university students who dressed up as hiphop-esque rappers/thugs at parties last month during MLK day.

F-Bombs drops a heavy dollop of "offendedness" on these stupid kids, and rightly so. But he misses the opportunity to be angry at both sides of the fence.
More importantly, if you're told to 'dress like Black people' and you show up with fake golds, doo rags, fried chicken, plastic guns, 40oz's, and flashing gang signs----obviously this is what you think about Black people in our entirety. That makes you a racist bigot, and I sincerely hope that your insensitivity and social retardation follow you for the remainder of your life.
One might ask why a bunch of half-wit white kids would consider bling and grillz and thug life to be representative of black culture.

In fact, more than one has asked that. I tend to think Penni Brown has a good point.
Remember when you first saw the movie Hollywood Shuffle and you laughed because the scenes were so ridiculous and far fetched. You could look at that movie and know that it was a satire...a stab at how main stream Hollywood stereotypes Black Americans.

Now, fast forward to movies and videos available today. Those once satirical images are no longer meant to be facetious. They're meant to show 'the real' life of people in 'the hood'. So, now, we're claiming these representations as valid and fair examples of how we live. So, can we really get angry when white people, who are trying to be like us, don the same gear and have a party...calling it a an MLK celebration?
In my opinion, you can get mad at the kids dressing like thugs/gangstas/pimps/whatever, but such misplaced anger doesn't accomplish anything. It's like getting pissed at the Wayans Brothers and calling them racists because of White Chicks.

As I mentioned in F-Bomb's comments, the anger would more productive were it directed at the hiphop role models who promote the thug culture. People like Ludacris or 50 Cent who refer to women as bitches and hos, boast of popping caps in asses and advocate promiscuous sex with no responsibility (okay, it's not all bad).

Get rich or die tryin', but don't waste your time on an education. Ironically, successful black people like Oprah and Bill Cosby -- the role models worthy of emulation -- are roundly criticized and ostracized if they speak out against such misplaced cultural priorities.

I don't know what the solution is. Obviously hiphop music and all its accouterments is fulfilling a demand in the cultural marketplace. Hopefully we'll see some strong leadership stand up and say "Come on. I mean COME ON!"

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