Archive | January, 2011

Praise Break: Funky Fresh Senior Choir…Wait, What?

31 Jan

OMJesus! It appears that someone has earned themselves a non-stop bullet train ticket to the hot place as a result of this one!

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For those who regularly follow this blog, you know that on occasion I enjoy a random viral “church” funny as much as the next person, but I am not convinced that whoever pieced this crotchety foolishness together was of sound mind when they did so.

And as amusing as getting a group of warbling senior citizen together, naming them the Funky Fresh Senior Choir (no, seriously) and having them harmonizing about “Riding Dirty” and other hip-hop buffoonery, one has to wonder why their minister of music was not sat down immediately.

Note: Although it is understood that the video above is likely a “spoof,” it is certainly not my intention to make light of the criminal (and still very much unreported) act of Elder Abuse.   I do believe however, that although an attempt at humor (in a disturbing sort of way) this here video qualifies as the exploitation of an otherwise melodic group of geriatrics.  What say ye?

“Take My Debt Away…”

31 Jan

Although in last week’s national address President Obama reassured “We, The People” that the state of our union was strong, I think that we can all admit that a serious bone of contention amongst politicians, pundits and the American people, liberal and conservative alike still seems to be this nation’s outrageous national debt (to the tune of roughly $14 Trillion).  Another national common annoyance to be sure, is clearly the fact that of this exorbitant amount, our great nation is beholden to China for nearly $843 Billion.

Knowing this, I am guessing that our indebtedness has given the Chinese government the hutzpah to dupe their citizens by exploiting American cinema….1986 style.  According to The Wall Street Journal Online, this could be exactly what China’s major state run television company, China Central Television hoped to accomplish recently.

In a newly released broadcast, the network aired video footage of what they claimed were Air Force training exercise images, but after the newscast went viral, countless Maverick, Iceman and even Goose fanatics alleged that the fake-me-out clip was actually a scene taken from the 1986 cult classic film “Top Gun.”

CCTV’s airing of what was depicted as a J-10 aircraft firing a missile on an F-5 jet during practice drills by the People’s Liberation Army Air Force had to many, a striking resemblance to the fancy flying of the wiley Pete “Maverick” Mitchell as played by Tom Cruise in the famous Hollywood motion picture.  And amid the growing controversy behind the copycat mid-air maneuvering, CCTV was forced to remove the aerial clip from its website, although a spokesperson for their foreign affairs department released a statement denying any knowledge of the incongruous incident.

Now, CCTV can say what they want, but after checking out the video myself, it definitely looks like although subtly, China definitely did some borrowing of its own from the American motion picture industry; and considering that Top Gun has grossed $354 Million worldwide since first being released, the only reasonable thing to do for pretending that the PLAAF was even half as awesome as the fictional Top Gun Naval Flying School would be for China to reduce our debt by at least that much.

Just Sayin’.

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Love God. Love People

28 Jan

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Love God, Love People…Such an easy concept that if applied, would alleviate about 90% of the problems that mankind faces today.  But, for as much Bible thumping and Jesus-Freakin’ as many of us do in the name of religion, morality or a sense of spiritual enlightenment, there are still far too many of us who are deceived in thinking that we actually “love” God, yet treat one another so abysmally.

Now although I can only speak for me, and do admit to being guilty of this very same act, I am certainly striving to be better about adopting this mandate for 2011(because Lord knows I struggle with loving my “neighbors” and am guilty of regularly visualizing a gang of said neighbors choked-out on any given day).

But while it undoubtedly is harder than it looks (yeah, I wish showing love to the dude who rear-ended me was tantamount to a whimsical musical celebration) it does seem that Israel has his finger on the pulse here, and if more people would simply live up to this clear-cut expectation, the sky really would be the limit for us all.

Caption This: Diary of a Mad Black FLOTUS

27 Jan

As a woman who juggles super mom-dom, corporate overachieving and style mavenry on a daily bases, it is no secret that I adore the First Lady of the United States in all of her resplendent fabulousness.  Whether glamming it up at a State Dinner, dressing it down while pushing her Let’s Move Initiative or finding a modern middle ground when performing her public speaking duties, Michelle Obama always appears to maintain an air of refined professionalism with a hint of sophisticated sass, which is incredibly refreshing in this age of P-popping Pop Stars, Hell Raising Real Housewives and Instigating (not necessarily intelligent) Lady Politicos.

But like us all, behind that veneer of attempted perfection, there must surely be times when The First Lady simply refuses to put on airs, and instead opts to wear her emotions directly on her face.  And while I am not sure what the circumstances were, or even when this picture was taken, I image that with all the criticisms, denigration, unfounded attacks and general hate leveled at her and her family since they moved into The White House in the back of her mind, President Sarkozy’s wife  became the unfortunate victim of this uncharacteristic Michelle Mean Mug (although I am sure this same expression involuntarily finds its way to the FLOTUS’ face at the mere mention of Sarah’s or that rebutting Michele’s name).

 

Exploring My Own Mortality

26 Jan

Sometimes I sit amazed, just thinking about the absolutely stupid and fearless things I did as a teenager and later as a young woman all in the name of freedom and independence.  From the time in tenth grade when I hitch-hiked across town because it was a bazillion degrees outside, I’d missed the metro bus and didn’t want to wait an hour for the next one to come (besides, in my narrow little mind back then nobody but the LAMES would be caught dead on the bus…but funny how I never gave a second thought to actually  being dead in some stranger’s car), to the time in college where I’d gone to class all day, worked the six to eleven shift and then drove my sleepy self nearly four hours from Athens to Albany (down some winding, two lane and at times pitch black roads) just to see my boo for the weekend, it is utterly frightening to now realize how cavalier and reckless I was, and how invincible I believed myself to be back then.

It is because of that “smelling myself, out my momma’s house foolery” that both my honey and I experienced collectively early in life (please believe that he took even bigger daredevil-idiot-risks than I did way back when…but that’s a post for another time) that has forced us to make a point of being especially candid and open with our children when it comes to talking about our lives, our decisions and ultimately preparing them for the fleetingness that is this life.  Apparently however, what I was not prepared for was The Big Girl’s response to the conversation of my inevitable departure from this earth one day.

Snooping throw my purse for loose change as she often does, The Big Girl came across my driver’s license this weekend and began her assessment of everything from the spelling of my full name to the look of my massive post-pregnancy double chin.  After a hysterical laugh at my expense, she noticed the floating donor heart and asked me what it was for.  Explaining to her that when I die, my various organs would be bequeathed to those who might need them, the uncontrollable sobs that she let out made me totally regret even having had the conversation with her.  When I asked her what was wrong, between snorts and sniffles she explained that she did not want anyone else to have my body parts.  I tried to make her understand that I would not be here always so I wouldn’t really need my liver or eyeballs once I was gone, but that only enhanced the hysterics.

Thinking quickly, I admitted that although no one lived forever, I was going to do everything in my power to stick around for the next two hundred years.  Getting a chuckle out of her, I continued by explaining that when it was my time to go to heaven, I could really help the sick people that were still here by promising to let them use the healthy body parts that I couldn’t take with me.  Somber but somewhat placated, The Big Girl finally approved of my tissue contributions.  And as much as the transience conversation with my adolescent child sucked, it was definitely necessary and I am glad that she was able to accept the reality that is life and death.

Ironically, the conversation also revealed to me that out of all The Pack Kids, the Big Girl is likely the one to let me live with her as opposed to putting me in a nursing home when I get old, senile and cantankerous.

Good times.

 

Not Much Packin’ Going On Today

25 Jan

So…I did have a blog post planned for tonight, but about a quarter of the way through President Obama’s State of The Union Address, I became irreparably distracted by John Boehner’s impervious screw face.

Now I am left wondering if Mr. Speaker attended tonight’s speech in a state of severe constipation, or if he picked up where Joe Wilson’s State of The Union Obama-Hateration left off last year?

Anyway, I promise I will do better tomorrow kids!

 

Celie Hex: Until You Do Right By Me, Sprint!

24 Jan

Although I work full-time, I do engage in consulting work on a part-time basis.  And because as a consultant, I require that my efforts and talents be rewarded in a timely fashion (read: payment), when I wear my consumer hat, as a general principle, I ensure that I abide by those same rules.  So when a business who takes my hard earned money every month gives me the run around and provides unsatisfactory service, you’d better believe that I am going to have a problem with it.

The rumbling behind this latest iRant began more than a month ago.  Nearing (but still two months shy of) my cellphone upgrade date, I started to notice that my Blackberry had begun to regularly perform the “cycling-hour-glass-of-dysfunction” not once, not twice, but close to eight times a day; so much so that I would have to remove my battery each time and perform a soft reset just to access my emails or retrieve my missed calls and voice messages.  And for those who know me, or at least read my blog you understand that as a worker bee, mommy, wife, and all around busy body, this type of non-service and nonsense is a fail of epic proportions.

So after calling my carrier’s customer service line, it was recommended that I take my phone to a local repair center to determine the cause of my technical hiccups.  Upon learning that my phone did not have sufficient memory to accommodate all of the functionality and applications that I regularly used, the technician gave me the option of upgrading my phone or hard resetting it (wiping all of the information off the phone).  Knowing that a device upgrade would result in a hefty out of pocket cost since my upgrade eligibility would not be satisfied until February, I opted for the hard reset (thank God for cellphone backups).  Three hours later, my naked phone was returned to me with only its factory settings.  But before I could even get it home, the cycling began again.

Totally frustrated at having wasted several hours with nothing to show for it, I called customer service back and let them know of my unresolved issue.  Of course, short of buying a new phone, no one seemed to be able to give me any practical advice on what to do.  Once I began complaining however about being a valued (in my mind at least) customer for close to a decade, the agent on the line did tell me that if I called back in mid-January, she would denote in my records that as a “Premier Customer” I would qualify for my cellphone upgrade eligibility early.

Holding them to their word, I contacted customer service three weeks later to see about that valued customer upgrade they had promised.  Not only did the rep I speak to not see anything denoted in my account, she simply transferred my call to a totally different department without so much as prefacing the agent about my call.  Explaining my issue for the 50-11th time, I was basically told that come February 1, I would be given $150 toward the purchase of a new phone, as if this “revelation” was some sort of special provision afforded to me that other customer simply were not privy to.

Retrieving my notes (oh, you know I had them), I added this conversation to the litany of falsehoods and other hogwash sold to me by the customer service staff over the past couple of months and then took to the twitter pages of Sprint Customer Care and Sprint Premier to let them know to expect one of my infamously scathing customer complaint letters (infamous, in that people often request that I pull out my Complaint Portfolio to read as amusing ice breakers at parties and gatherings at my house).

Not 24-hours later, I just happened to log into my online Sprint account to determine what my current balance was as I planned out my bi-monthly budget, and wouldn’t you know it….my account was mysteriously updated and reflected a Premier Customer eligibility upgrade date of 1/1/11, as opposed to the original date of 2/1/11.

(-__-)  Humph!

Now admittedly, I usually take perverse pleasure in crafting the sort of correspondence that garner me coupons, free services and other benefits that relieve the consumer pressure on my pocket book, but seriously though… why do I always have to threaten to show-out (intellectually, of course) before a vendor will “do right by me”?

And while I appreciate the whole after-the-fact-rapid-response, I earnestly say to you: Boo Sprint…just boo!

 

 

 

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