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13th-Jul-2008 07:12 pm - Ah, youth.
Symeons Monkey Head!
Before I get too far in to this, let me say that I cannot, and do not, deny that this post may stem from the innocence and naivete that come with youth.

There, now that we got that out of the way...

Not long ago, in the month of May, I got in to a fight with my father about the Presidency. Not about specific candidates, or specific issues, or specific parties, but the office of the Presidency, and the responsibilities that come with it.

Now, full disclosure dictates that I'm an Obama supporter. As of today, he's got my vote, and there's not much that I can see that would change that. However, there's something that I would very much like to see from a candidate.

I would like to see some pandering to the opposition.

Allow me to explain.

When I got in to this fight - perhaps it was more an argument - with my father, it was instigated by my belief that the President of the United States is the president of EVERYONE. Not just President of the people who voted for him, but the President of those who voted for The Other Guy. Not just President of the states whose electoral votes he won, but the President of the states whose electors went to The Other Guy.

My father's belief (and I labeled this "jaded", rudely), is that the President is the President by virtue of the people WHO elected you, and it's your responsibility to advocate - forcefully, deliberately - for their beliefs (since theoretically, those are the beliefs you ran on). Even if those beliefs go contrary to the improvement of the country in the long term, advocate for them. (We were able to agree, as Democrats, that the current administration's policies and actions run counter to the betterment of ANYTHING)

I would like to see Barack Obama go to West Virginia, a state that has proclaimed in poll numbers that should make them somewhat ashamed of themselves, that they will not vote for a black man because he's a black man. I would like to see him go and listen to these people, to hear what is important to them, and to come up with some way to address their needs - not all of them, but some of them. Because if/when Barack Obama becomes President, his actions will affect West Virginians, whether they want it to or not.

Likewise, I would like to see John McCain go to San Francisco, a city with a highly concentrated population of liberal homosexuals (so I'm told), and see what's important to them. I would like to see him formulate a solution on the basis of their concerns. Because if/when John McCain becomes President, his actions will affect liberal homosexuals, whether they want it to or not.

The President of the United States is exactly that - the President of the United States - ALL 50 of them, AND the miscellaneous random territories - the Guam's and American Samoa's of the world.

Perhaps it's the innocence and naivete of youth, but that's what I believe. I get that there is a place in politics for Party and for Platform, but the office of the Presidency is the highest office in the land, and demands the taking of the high road. The first 7 letters of "President" are "preside", derived from the French presider - "stand guard, superintend".

1611, from Fr. présider "preside over, govern" (15c.), from L. præsidere "stand guard, superintend," lit. "sit in front of," from præ- "before" + sedere "to sit" (see sedentary).

The primary duty of the President is to preside, to guide, to steer the country, as a nation, through turbulent times. The President is the President of all 50 states, not just the states that elected him. His judgement must include the impact of his decisions on all of the states, and on all of the people who voted both for and against him.
3rd-Jun-2008 10:15 pm - So, like...
Symeons Monkey Head!

So, I went out to dinner with some friends tonight, and I decided to leave a little early and get some photos of the fountain at Logan Circle. The restaurant was nearby, so I figured I'd hang out by the fountain, relax, get some photos, and hang out. Well, I get there, and there's like this cluster of people. I try to figure out what's going on, thinking it might be filming for Marly & Me, but realize that it's much too small a cluster.

Then I realize it's for It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia! Starring, Danny DeVito! Who is now...

...my homeboy! He's a really nice guy - signed autographs for everyone and took pictures whenever possible. You can't really see him, but Fred Savage is the guy in the blue shirt between the two guys to the left of us (D-dog's right, of course). I have other photos of him if you don't want to believe me. :D

They were shooting a promo for the 4th season, I think. Thank God I had the good sense to go take some pictures tonight :)

Symeons Monkey Head!

What has focaccia, caramelized onions, breakfast potatoes, eggs, mozzarella cheese, roasted red peppers, and your choice of meat?

You can find out at Sam's Morning Glory Diner in South Philadelphia.

Hint: it's called 'Breakfast Pizza', and it's incredible.Collapse )
9th-May-2008 06:01 pm - It's a sad, sad day.
Sad Dragon
Today was just a sad day.

I guess that there were some pockets of joy for some people - myself included. But on the whole, as days go, it was a very sad day.

Some people outside Philadelphia, and nearly everyone inside and around Philadelphia, have heard about the shooting/slaying of Sgt. Liczbinski, who died pursuing bank robbery suspects. Today was the funeral service at the Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul, which is about a 10 minute walk from my apartment. The procession took the Sgt. up the Parkway to his final resting place somewhere North and East of where I live.

It's a strange thing. I live near the Art Museum, The Parkway, Boathouse Row, and the general vicinity of "city events" - the location where "things happen", and more importantly, where traffic gets blocked off so that things CAN happen.

I'm always the most vocal critic and complainer of these events. "This fucks up my whole weekend!" "This is in my WAY!" "There are too many PEOPLE!" My previous complaint of having no parking is joyously no longer an issue, but the rest of them are still valid.

But today... with more traffic blocked off than for any event that I can imagine (save for probably Live 8, but I got the hell out of dodge for that), I didn't seem to mind. I didn't in any way get upset about the traffic situation, the barricades, the delays, the wait. In fact, I got upset about a slain officer.

And that sort of never happens. Philadelphia's had more than its share of slain officers in the last two years. Six months ago, another officer was slain (which if I recall, received far less attention than this officer's death). I remember that I thought it was a real shame what had happened, but I wasn't brought to the point of actually feeling something about it.

I stopped at Starbucks for breakfast, and thought about getting my camera to snap a couple of photos of the Parkway, since I'd have to go down that way to get to where I was going for the day. But two things stopped me, once I got in the car.

1: Something in my head told me that it would be disrespectful to the officer, his family, and the uniform. I'm not sure what it was that gave me that sense, and I don't know why I'd feel that way, but I did.

2: I came very close to tears. And I don't know why that happened either. But I was sad for the officer, sad for his family, sad for the police force, and I was sad for the city. I didn't cry, but I did have to take a minute to compose myself, and reflect on the fact that for the first time, the death of a police officer had affected me.

I don't know why this officer's death is affecting me in a more profound way than those previous, but maybe that's why he's getting the additional attention. Or maybe the previous officer's family had requested more private services.

I would be remiss if I didn't factor in the weather, on some level. Rain started overnight and lasted all through the day, adding an especially somber and morose feeling to the day's events. I'm the first to admit that the weather has an effect on my mood - brighter days make me happier, dreary days make me down - but I think that today's weather pretty accurately matched the mood of the city.
14th-Apr-2008 10:02 pm - Mini-rant
Symeons Monkey Head!
Recently at dinner, a friend of mine told another friend of mine about the check I wrote to the Obama campaign. It caused a bit of uproar. In fact, it caused such an uproar, that I gulped 4 glasses of wine quite quickly so that I would be drunk and could legitimately go "I can't discuss this with any legitimacy! I'm DRUNK!". It worked - the furor was quelled, and dinner proceeded. The friendship however, is a bit in tatters.

See, here's the thing.

The friend who got angered (we'll call her Mary) is a die-hard Hillary supporter. Has been for as long as I've known her, looks up to Hillary in every conceivable way, and is absolutely passionate about her candidacy for President.

To Mary, anything short of support for Hillary is blasphemy. Anything in support of Obama is blaspheming heresy. So, by supporting his candidacy, I hate women.

See how I made that jump without logic? Right - stick with me here.

I think that Hillary Clinton would make a fine President. I think that Barack Obama would make a fine President. I think that John McCain would make a fine President. Isn't that what the women's movement really wants? Equality? I think that each of them has major strengths to bring to the office of the Presidency.

Here's my problem with Hillary though - she can't win the General Election.

The media is infatuated with Barack Obama - nobody, not even the candidate himself - disputes that. He's got the gift of gab and connection, which is just hard NOT to cover. But on some level, the media also likes Hillary - or at least they don't despise her. Why do I say that? Because her negatives are astronomical, and nobody seems to care. Maybe it's because the media's already decided that Barack is the nominee. Maybe it's because nobody wins by covering negatives (but we all know that's not true). But everyone - every SINGLE PERSON I KNOW - knows at least someone, at least one person who HATES HILLARY CLINTON, and they don't know why. And you know what? A lot of them are women.

Hillary's negatives are astronomical, and I think that the idea that people aren't going to mobilize against her as the nominee in the General Election is absurd. White men hate her. Loads of non-Democratic white women hate her - and they can't articulate why. I've had this conversation before:

Me: "So, what do you think of Hillary Clinton?"
Random White Woman: "I hate her."
Me: "Okay. Why do you hate her?"
RWW: "I don't know. But there's something about her that I just cannot stand."
Me: "Okay then."

Not just once or twice, but several times.

I don't hate women. I love women. I think that Hillary Clinton would be a fine President. Maybe even a great President. But she'll never get the chance - at least not yet. Why? Because women come second. Blacks could vote before women. 15th Amendment before 19th Amendment. Sadly, history dictates that it's likely that Barack Obama will become President before Hillary Clinton.

I don't hate women. I don't hate Hillary Clinton. I just don't think she wins the General Election, and I like Obama more than I like McCain. I don't have any problems voting for Hillary, except that I don't think she wins. And I want the person more likely to win.

There are a lot of people who need to step back from the rhetoric and look objectively at the situation. I'm trying to.
14th-Apr-2008 07:53 pm(no subject)
Symeons Monkey Head!
Quick Questions on Politics

(Note: I'm not trying to stir controversy here - I'm genuinely asking these questions)

Is Obama wrong with his comments? I get that the wording is wrong - but is the sentiment, the facts of the situation wrong? Set aside the audience - which is the biggest issue, just watch - and look at the content of the statement. Is what he said WRONG? I've never been in small-town America long enough to understand it, so I'm asking - is. he. wrong.?

Hillary Clinton is the champion of the middle class, and Barack Obama is the representative of the elite. Okay, I get that this is how they're portrayed. But why? What makes Hillary the champion of the middle class? What has she done for the Middle Class? Why do blue collar voters flock to her? Do they really flock to her? Most importantly - do they flock to her because they just won't flock to him, and they need someone to ... flock to?

Barack Obama didn't vote for the war. That's nice. He also COULDN'T vote for the war, nor could he vote against it. Why doesn't Hillary make more of an issue of this? Obama didn't vote for the war, but he also didn't vote for a host of things that people DO benefit from. Because he couldn't. Because he wasn't there. I don't understand how the Clinton campaign isn't hammering him on the OTHER things that he couldn't/didn't vote for. It seems like such an obvious win to me. Am I wrong there?
28th-Mar-2008 06:59 pm - Siriusly?
Symeons Monkey Head!
It's long, but it's so worth it - truly - scroll to the end if you don't believe me.

Getting to my Friday client takes about an hour in the morning. This isn't UNBEARABLE though, as I have Sirius and normally the radio is pretty decent.

However, on Friday, Bubba and Howard are both replay shows. So, that kind of sucks. But I didn't even get replay shows this morning. This morning went like this...

'You might want to cut that. Someone's going to bitch.' [It's good to have a reviewer]Collapse )

See? Wasn't that worth your while? I mean, doesn't Turdcutter just make it all worth while?
27th-Mar-2008 08:45 pm - Picture Of The Day: March 27, 2008
Symeons Monkey Head!

This, ladies and gentleman, is the POTD equivalent of a cop out. I had a day that was filled with camera-prohibited activity, so...
I was at the office today, which is increasingly (happily) unusual. Oh, check it out. That power strip? It's a Tandy. Like, from 1987. Yeah.
(full size - 1.9mb)
27th-Mar-2008 07:03 pm(no subject)
Symeons Monkey Head!
This is not going to be an annual update, though it is sure to hold true next year as true as it has this year and last year, and ever since I got in to this LiveJournal business.

Here's how I read my friends list:

Page Down
Page Down
Page Down
See Tits
Page Up
Arrow to Tits
Review Tits
Open Tits-Behind-Cut Post in another window
Page Down
Page Down
See Userpic I recognize
Page Up
Arrow to Post of Userpic I recognize
Review length
Determine if post is TL;DR
Determine how much I care about poster, evaluate topic, potentially open post in another window
Page Down
Page Down
Page Down

(repeat sections on Userpics and Tits ad nauseum)

Any questions?
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