Now on the holidays

Posted in Michael's thoughts, Political Opinions, Ranting, The Family on December 16th, 2009 by Michael

It has been a bit since I pounded on the keys. No excuse I guess, just other things have gotten in the way. And by other things, that would be my job, my attendance at swim lessons, my new Macintosh, my hours as photo editor and of course my lazy ass.

All compounded by a mean cold that seemed to take forever to leave me, zycam be damned. Then we had the kids get sick. Fearing the flu – which was an irritant since we had gotten them flu shots – it ended up being strep throat. Then the other two contracted “hand, mouth and foot” disease. That sounds like, but is not like, that malady that horses get. This appears to be a common disease for kids in public forums (daycare, etc). You get a fever and sores on your — surprise — hands, feet and mouth. Goes away in a few days. We are totally not surprised since Meghan will put anything in her mouth and her mouth on anything. We are walking Clorox wipe sample providers now.

All of that has caused a bevy of sleepless nights. Mostly, for MA since Max is pretty much a momma’s boy, even if his favorite word is ‘daddy’. All of this has caused disruption in our healthy eating plans, exercise routines and subsequently, the boulder continues downhill to a lack of energy and lost motivation by one and all. Ergo, I have suffered a bad case of LAS (lazy ass syndrome).

One could only hope that for the marketing machine of the democratic dumbasses who are working overtime in trying to discredit, misrepresent and otherwise, push through, without regard for the wishes of or wellbeing of our nation, bills that negatively impact our livelihoods and those of future generations. Of course, I give Obama a pass on this since he is actually on foreign soil and NOT apologizing. Of course, he continues his “you shouldn’t have but gimme” approach to governance while picking up this political and recently worthless award in Oslo. He continues to lie about almost everything but he is, a politician afterall… At least he and Joe Biden are in agreement that if they do not pass healthcare now, it will not get passed. Kind of makes you wonder why you want to push something that you know most people do not want and would not allow if they had the chance (which they will in 2010). Kind of makes you wonder why you have Harry Reid breaking the law of congress to change debating rules. That is rhetorical since we all know it is an ideological issue…. Got to create dependencies and secure future votes. And of course, claim credit. Obama is desperate to be able to claim something for this State of the Union address… So far, it has been all press conferences. At least his people have backed off selling this country for manufactured air credits…. That will probably start back up in January. Not sure how that will be Bush’s fault, but you know it will be.

Just to remind folks, I’m pretty green. Probably more so that most of you – damn sure more so that Al – burn more carbon than most cities – Gore. I remain conflicted on global warming given the appearance of credible data – but less than credible sources – on both sides. Who do you believe? I am not sure. The whack jobs on the left have given me NO reason to believe anything they have to say with damning inconsistency in their message and suspicious data. The nuts on the right seem more concerned with interpretive challenges versus acknowledgement that there is potentially a problem. Given their ostrich approach, can I believe they would be forthcoming if the data supported it? I doubt it. Frankly, I do not have the time (who does?) to go try to separate the lies from the liars. That said, replace your light bulbs, keep lights off when not needed, unplug devices that are not needed, buy a hybrid if you can justify it, recycle where you can, put in energy savings constructs in your home and wear a sweater in the winter (stylish and cost savings benefits). Best of all, please write (on recycled paper if you have it) to your representatives and ask them not to tax the crap out of me to finance some dictator’s regime in the rainforest. That’s important you know because there is unprecedented global warming going on – really, I read it so it must be true. Max is prepared. Get ready for that Nebraska beachfront property in 2017.

This brings me to more debate – Tiger Woods. First, not sure why it is that important and dominating to the news. Yes, his decision to take a break from the game is news that transcends sports (huge hits coming to charities…like him or not, there are lots of people who will suffer while he sits this out). However, whether or not he boinked a few (or few dozen) women just doesn’t register with me. Given his popularity and the absolute circus around him as he travels, I’d be surprised if he didn’t step out (though, let’s face it, Elin’s a totally hottie). Anyway, you got groupies and you got superstar groupies. Self respect vs stardom. Guess which wins ? Couple this with the fact that he has lead a pretty sheltered life and now has those control points released with nominal ramifications, is anyone surprised he explored his wild side? Ask Todd Marinovich. Ask Magic Johnson. Ask Jim Nantz. Ask half the rock stars alive today. I mean, if Steve Tyler can get hooked up, you KNOW it happens. It is not right (to me) but it happens. Of course, we are ALL overlying some sort of moral standard on him (that he might not share) and we are ALL assuming facts not in evidence. Who knows what arrangement he had with Elin? Was this a marriage of convenience like Michael Jackson had ? I have no clue and I don’t care. Do I feel bad for Elin? Sort of. I would probably have cared more if she was not open to refinancing their prenup. If it is all about the money, then what does that make her? Does it make him anything more than a bad businessman? Anyone who puts a price tag on a marriage shouldn’t be in the marriage and shouldn’t be surprised with the marriage is over. The bottom line is that I like Tiger because I am in awe with his golf game and ability to do things I have never seen before. I don’t track, invest in or care about what he does once the scorecard is signed. I mean, it is not like he is an elected official or anything.

What else… for those wondering, the long trip down tooth land is over. Got the final crown installed on Friday. That was the easy part. I am still not a fan of the dentist and have no understanding of why someone would want to go into that profession – outside of money, I suppose. Outside of those that work on the other end, it has to be one of the least glamorous of specialties.

My new iMac and I are struggling to get along. That damn screen is so big that I actually have to move things from side to side to see them well (IPS technology is not as good as plasma from angled viewing). That said, once I get something displayed, OMG! It is crystal clear and detailed like no other. Ironically, it exposes all of the flaws in previous images that I thought “were pretty good”. The biggest challenge for me is the software suite. I’ve been brainwashed in the windows world for a long time and have to unlearn some things (like using a one button mouse). Plus, I have to move to new tools that are different. What use to be simple is not so much anymore (like bulk renames) and what was hard (organization) is now easy. Of course, as I learn these things, I have no idea if I am learning them efficiently or not. Time will tell. It does get expensive though buying new noise reduction software, album managers, wireless keyboards, etc. Of course, I would have had to do that at some point on the PC too. At least I don’t have security updates to load every week.

Our Santa picture search was kind of a bust. Max, the king of cheese, just didn’t want to comply.

We did a church St. Nick bit and also ventured out to Bass Pro Shop (of all places) for a Santa picture. I guess I’m cheap. Anyway, they had a digital option which I bought only to be disappointed with the low resolution. I guess there is no low cost lunch. Anyway, that pissed me off enough that I decided I would not buy prints from them and set off using some of the above software tools to enlarge, de-noise, sharpen and add detail to the images I did have. I think they are passable after about 30 minutes of work. I’ll post them here closer to Christmas and of course, they will be in the gallery. They are not on the cards that got sent out today. Those are either a non-color corrected split shot from my misadventures with the light meter or a pajama pictures (ask MA – I just live here). As usual, there was also an annual poem (this time mostly penned by MA) and a recap of some adventures that some will receive. I ran out of toner while printing so if you did not get one, you can download it (3megs) from HERE .

I guess that is about it for now. I need to buckle in for the upcoming holiday madness and several year-end deals that need to be wrapped up while trying to juggle everyone’s vacation availability. It is going to be a stressful time but isn’t that what this time of year is all about? Seems like it.

If I do not blog again this year, hope everyone has a happy holiday and that you try, in spite of it all, to remember what is important and special.