girls-who-read

Now That’s Sexy

It’s only slightly NSFW; depends on what you feel about words that rhyme with “tips” and “grass”. Regardless, it’s brilliant, funny, and a darn good message.

budget

Warren Buffet’s Plan To End The Deficit

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:

“I could end the deficit in 5 minutes,” he told CNBC. “You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election.

“The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 – before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

“Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year or less to become the law of the land – all because of public pressure.”

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

*Congressional Reform Act of 2011*

  1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they’re out of office.
  2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.
  3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.
  4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.
  5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.
  6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.
  7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen/women.

Congressmen/women made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to receive the message. Don’t you think it’s time?

THIS IS HOW YOU FIX CONGRESS!

EDIT: Well, I’ve been informed that this is a fake, and not truly Mr. Buffett’s words. To which I say, “Oh well!” Because it’s the thoughts that count – no matter who said it, wouldn’t it be great if these kinds of changes would take place? So, despite the inaccuracy, I’m going to leave the post up in the spirit of positive change, even if the source quoted isn’t accurate. Besides, the New York Times, I ain’t.

plumeria

My Dad’s Eulogy

My brother was tasked with the real eulogy, so I opted to put my Writing degree (and sense of humor) to work and come up with something that I thought he would appreciate. After all, we were all dressed in Hawai’ian shirts, to commemorate a man who would much prefer the Don Ho look to Armani any day, so not to have something tongue-in-cheek would have been remiss.

And on a completely personal note, this was the most ambitious rhyme-scheme I’ve ever attempted outside of college writing assignments (AABCCB). I’m happy with how it turned out.

A Eulogy Poem

I’ve come to stand before you today
And do my very best to convey
While wearing, of all things, a Hawai’ian shirt –
Some words and feelings about my Dad.
A teacher, an artist – the only father I’ve had,
A man happiest with his hands in the dirt.

A man not much shorter than a giraffe
Was capable of making us all laugh.
His heart was very much an open book.
Anyone that knew him well
Knew the stories he loved to tell
And man — could that ol’ beanpole cook!

So, this is just about the time
You’ve realized that I’m about to rhyme
This entire eulogy…
Don’t worry, sit tight, if you please,
I’ll do my best to minimize the cheese,
And keep it short, in case you have to pee.

George — he was the kind of guy
Who always smiled, laughed, said, “Hi”
He’d make a friend of anyone he’d meet.
His helping hands he’d gladly lend
To anyone — stranger, foe, or friend
And even now, his giving’s far from complete…

It was his kindness that always “drove the bus”
And his heart is now a part of us.
His presence in our lives was certainly a treat.
And I doubt that anyone here at all
Young or old, short or tall
Wouldn’t describe his life’s aftertaste as sweet.

So what I really came to say
About the man we’ve gathered for here today
George was the ultimate people-pleaser.
Everything he did was with love and a smile
Didn’t have to try — it was just his style
And boy… we sure are gonna miss the ol’ geezer.

I love you, Dad.

tools

The Proper Use of Tools

My dad forwarded me one of those emails – you know the kind, I’m sure – and while most of the “joke mail” I get sent tends to be about as funny as a kidney stone, I actually think this one is pretty good.

And since I was just considering some DIY projects, it’s particularly timely. If you’ve ever tried building/repairing/maintaining anything requiring tools, you’ll appreciate this with wincing commiseration. And if you haven’t, well, now you’re prepared for the day when you do.

Tools, Explained

DRILL PRESS: A tall upright machine useful for suddenly snatching flat metal bar stock out of your hands so that it smacks you in the chest and flings your beer across the room, denting the freshly-painted project which you had carefully set in the corner where nothing could get to it.

WIRE WHEEL: Cleans paint off bolts and then throws them somewhere under the workbench with the speed of light . Also removes fingerprints and hard-earned calluses from fingers in about the time it takes you to say, ‘Oh sh–!’

SKIL SAW: A portable cutting tool used to make studs too short.

PLIERS: Used to round off bolt heads. Sometimes used in the creation of blood-blisters.

BELT SANDER: An electric sanding tool commonly used to convert minor touch-up jobs into major refinishing jobs.

HACKSAW: One of a family of cutting tools built on the Ouija board principle… It transforms human energy into a crooked, unpredictable motion, and the more you attempt to influence its course, the more dismal your future becomes.

VISE-GRIPS: Generally used after pliers to completely round off bolt heads. If nothing else is available, they can also be used to transfer intense welding heat to the palm of your hand.

OXYACETYLENE TORCH: Used almost entirely for lighting various flammable objects in your shop on fire. Also handy for igniting the grease inside the wheel hub out of which you want to remove a bearing race.

TABLE SAW: A large stationary power tool commonly used to launch wood projectiles for testing wall integrity.

HYDRAULIC FLOOR JACK: Used for lowering an automobile to the ground after you have installed your new brake shoes , trapping the jack handle firmly under the bumper.

BAND SAW: A large stationary power saw primarily used by most shops to cut good aluminum sheet into smaller pieces that more easily fit into the trash can after you cut on the inside of the line instead of the outside edge.

TWO-TON ENGINE HOIST: A tool for testing the maximum tensile strength of everything you forgot to disconnect.

PHILLIPS SCREWDRIVER: Normally used to stab the vacuum seals under lids or for opening old-style paper-and-tin oil cans and splashing oil on your shirt; but can also be used, as the name implies, to strip out Phillips screw heads.

STRAIGHT SCREWDRIVER: A tool for opening paint cans. Sometimes used to convert common slotted screws into non-removable screws and butchering your palms.

PRY BAR: A tool used to crumple the metal surrounding that clip or bracket you needed to remove in order to replace a 50 cent part.

HOSE CUTTER: A tool used to make hoses too short.

HAMMER: Originally employed as a weapon of war, the hammer nowadays is used as a kind of divining rod to locate the most expensive parts adjacent the object we are trying to hit.

UTILITY KNIFE: Used to open and slice through the contents of cardboard cartons delivered to your front door; works particularly well on contents such as seats, vinyl records, liquids in plastic bottles, collector magazines, refund checks, and rubber or plastic parts. Especially useful for slicing work clothes, but only while in use.

SON-OF-A-BITCH TOOL: Any handy tool that you grab and throw across the garage while yelling ‘Son of a BITCH!’ at the top of your lungs. It is also, most often, the next tool that you will need.

exercise

It’s Just Exercise.

I train because I love it. I love picking up heavy things, swinging kettlebells, moving my body and feeling strong. I love having a goal and working towards it, checking off objectives along the way. I love meeting people who like the same things I do, who can teach me new tricks or show me a better way to move the same object the same distance. I love seeing my body change, watching muscles develop, seeing a few extra pounds on the scale. I love feeling strong when I do “real life” things like snowboard or hike. And finally, I train because it makes me happy, plain and simple.

Melissa Urban, Whole9

drum

Some Peeps Beating Their Own Drum

As I wrote about not long ago, a major impetus for this blog is my desire to find clarity through self-expression… so I thought I’d share a couple examples of what I consider to be great self-expression I’ve come across recently. And chances are high that you’ve got no idea who these people are yet, so that’s kinda cool, huh?

Is there a CrossFit-esque slant to these? Sure there is. After all, functional fitness as a life pursuit is the water cooler I spend my time around these days. Is there more to it than just CrossFit? Damn straight – otherwise, I wouldn’t be mentioning them. As if you couldn’t tell, “one-noters” aren’t my slice of bacon, really; I draw the most inspiration from folks who pay attention to more of life than just a thin stream of thought.

Barbells and Bacon

The blog of Jon Matzner, a CrossFit trainer in the Wash-D.C. area, B&B is a blog I’ve come to follow over the past few months quite avidly. It’s easy to tell by the way Jon writes that as much as he geeks out on CrossFit, his interests span much wider than his snatch grip.

I like reading Jon’s stuff because sometimes he writes a “stand beside me and see what I’m seeing” kinda post, and other times, he shares ideas from places that have sparked his interest, and they never fail to spark mine.

Good stuff – check him out.

Drive Time With Alec

Now, the video podcast that Alec does is a recent thing compared with his blog, but jeez-louise, it’s funny. Not that it’s a comedy-based videocast/vlog – he’s just a funny guy, and that’s often times so much better than someone who’s trying to be funny.

He’s also got a good message with the whole thing, and since it’s free, what have you got to lose? Right? This’ll be a fun one to see how it evolves, too.

And because posts like this always have at least three features, I’ll share one more with you…

Whole9

Okay, this one’s a bit of a cheat, since Whole9 is actually two people and not just one, but who’s house is this? Run’s house.

The brainchild of Melissa Urban and Dallas Hartwig, the Whole9 blog is an amazing resource of nutritional know-how, but until you’ve experienced the voice and style of M & D, you really haven’t lived right. Or eaten right. Or laughed like you know is good for you to laugh.

Don’t get me wrong – even if Melissa and Dallas were as boring as an empty can, I’d still suggest you read their stuff, because the information on how to live healthy is so darn good it should be front-page news. But given the fact that they’re entertaining as heck, awesome people, and smokin’ hot (yes, both of ‘em), you owe it to yourself to read more, learn more, and listen to what they say.

And if you want to meet Melissa, Dallas, and me in one fell swoop (and who wouldn’t?), then come to Whole9’s Foundations of Nutrition workshop in Lewisville, TX (just north of Dallas) on October 16th. I’ll be there, soakin’ up the juicy wisdom.

Are You Beating Your Own Drum?

Let us know about it – post a comment, share a story, and get your groove on.

waffle

3D CSS Box Model

I know this’ll be a bit geeky for many of you, but as a webdesigner, I end up trying to explain concepts like margin, padding, etc. all the time. It’s not always the easiest to grasp, especially trying to understand how they all go together. Thanks to John Hicks of HicksDesign, this 3-D model of the concept should make matters much easier.

Shortlink: http://goo.gl/Th44gB

Adversity? Disabled? Don’t think so.

Brilliant talk, especially for those of you who are teachers/coaches/athletes/parents. And while she doesn’t show them in this video, Aimee has some amazing legs…

Mullins was born with fibular hemimelia (missing fibula bones) and, as a result, had both of her legs amputated below the knee when she was a year old. She is a graduate of Parkland High School in Allentown and Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
While attending Georgetown University, she competed against able-bodied athletes in NCAA Division I track and field events. She competed in the Paralympics in 1996 in Atlanta, in which she ran the 100-meter dash in 17.01 seconds and jumped 3.14 meters in the long-jump.
Also while at Georgetown, Mullins won a place on the Foreign Affairs internship program, working at The Pentagon. She also makes appearances as a motivational speaker, and is a fashion model and actress. (from Wikipedia)

Shortlink: http://goo.gl/JKOu61