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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Good Vs. Good?!?!?

   Once again five months of watching, cheering and a little betting is almost over. The Superbowl is on Sunday. A showdown of the two best teams in football. Indianapolis Colts vs. New Orleans Saints. Both have great offenses but they present a contrast in styles. The Colts are a slick, well oiled machine. They don't change there tactics much and they don't care if you know what play they are going to run. They simply dare you to stop them. The Saints are continually changing there playbook. New plays, new formations, and chicanery are the name of there game. They want to keep you on your toes, constantly guessing. It should be a fun show, and I will be sad when its over. 
   This particular game is interesting to me for a different reason though. I harp on choosing the third option when faced with Evil vs. Evil. But what do you do when faced with Good vs. Good. When you are not a fan of either team but you like them both. Who to root for, who to root against? It is a quandary of the mind. For those in the same pickle I have come up with two solutions. The first is to root for the underdog. I, for one, believe that a victory is much sweeter when no one saw it coming. However in this case the New Orleans Saints are not that big of an underdog. Therefore making a Saints victory a little less sweeter. 
   The other option is to root for whichever team is currently losing. Many people have trouble with this because they are incapable of rooting for more than one team in the same game. They have to pull for the same team throughout the whole game or root for no one. However it is my favorite way to watch a game in which I have no interests. You are constantly rooting for a come back from behind victory, while at the same time rooting for a close game. The one chink in this theory is what to do when the game is tied. I usually root for whoever is on offense or whoever was trailing last. All in all I just get to enjoy the game and have fun with it because the outcome doesn't matter to me. By games end, as long as the score is close I will be a happy man. Well and if there is some good eats too.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Oh How Times Have Changed

  This blog is proof positive that times have changed. Just five years ago most people had no idea what a blog was. Now every third person you meet has their own. Sure no one reads most of these i.e. this one, but that's not the point. The internet has change so much about the world and how we receive and send information. Instead of writing a letter to an editor or to a relative we send emails, update our facebook or blog about it. One of the biggest industries effected is the newspaper business. According to http://www.naa.org/TrendsandNumbers/Total-Paid-Circulation.aspx, newpaper circulation is down around 22% since 1992. That is around the time the internet and cable television started finding there way into peoples homes.
   With less circulation and less need for already outdated information, newspapers are becoming more and more a thing of the past, for many Americans. But I actually sat down and read the newspaper the other day. I feel like I learned a lot from it. In just an hours time I read through more different topics and subjects then I care to remember. However the one thing that jumped out at me more than anything was the comic strips. I had not read a comic strip in over ten years. It really amazed me at how incredibly unfunny they are. Many of them didn't even make sense. I do understand that it is hard to come up with funny original material, day in and day out for years on end. How they do it, I don't know. The thing I wondered more than anything though was, were comic strips ever funny?
   Thinking back I always remember being excited for the Sunday comic strips, but with a few exceptions I don't remember ever laughing at them. The main exception being Calvin and Hobbes. Those two really were the cats meow. I have come to the deeper question of, which has changed more, the times and technology, or me. Was Peanuts ever funny or have I grown out of my childish humor. I sincerely hope its the first. Even though I am an adult now and I have matured and developed as a person, I would hate to lose all that made being a kid so great.  I hope to always improve myself but I really do believe, that is one thing society as a whole needs to try and hold on to. Holding on to our childlike sense of humor does not mean punching our sisters, blaming everything on our brothers to avoid getting in trouble Its more about not being so serious all the time and the ability to enjoy the simplest of things. Of course my fiance may tell you I hold on to my childish ways a little to much, but her opinion may be bias.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Success of Failure

   What can we learn from success? Nothing really, except maybe that nothing is ever good enough. The true learning begins with failure. It has been said that the man that succeeds at everything has gained no knowledge. Ok, so I actually just made that up, but I'm sure someone much smarter than me said it first.
   When I look back at my life all my most valuable lessens were learned in my most idiotic moments. For instance, the day I learned it was better to agree with women no matter how wrong they are? It seemed like an innocent enough day. I was nine years old at the time, playing in the back yard with my older sister. There was an argument over a game of backyard tennis, resulting in me getting pummled with a tennis racket. My body and ego bruised I quickly realized the only way to win is to concede defeat. And the earlier the better. Then there was the time when I was thirteen when I learned it it a very bad idea to steal your neighbors mail. A court date and a years probation later and I'm a much better person for it.
   Mistakes should not always be considered failures. Everyone one has heard the Thomas Edison qoute "I have not failed, I've just found 10,000 ways that wont work." With every supposed failure he succeeded in moving one step closer to to his ultimate goal. And with every failure we have in life we move one step closer to making our lives better. Now I just have to learn why I can't stop forgetting where I put stuff.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stimulating the Economy Without Spending a Dime

   Some of the brightest minds in the world have been perplexed and confounded at the best way to make the U.S. economy stronger. It seems like a no two experts can agree on anything and no suggestion has been proposed that didn't required significant spending changes. Some suggest cutting the budget and paying off the national debt, others strongly urge that more bailouts are the answer. There doesn't appear to be a quick easy answer in sight. But that doesn't have to be the case.
   It seems elementary to say that if you give people a good reason to spend money, they will. Most people work all their lives to afford the things they want. Most will spare no expense for what their heart desires. So I say, lets give it to them. What is the one thing that hundreds of thousands of Americans want and would pay tens of thousands of dollars to purchase? No I'm not advocating for legalizing marijuana. That would cost the government millions of dollars in regulation and sanctions and create somewhat of a legal disaster in the short term. I am referring to giving all people the ability to marry the person they love. Just for a moment set aside your biases and your strong views and follow me on this journey into what could be.
   If Americans were permitted by law to marry any one they wanted, no matter the sex, they would. According to the website http://www.soundvision.com/info/weddings/statistics.asp, 2.3 millions couples wed every year in the U.S. and the average wedding budget is $20,000. That is an astounding number. With an estimated 4.3 million gay, lesbian or bisexual people in the U.S., that number would surely skyrocket if these Americans were allowed to marry. If less than 5% of the estimated gay or lesbian population got married, the amount of money put into the economy would crush every other stimulus plan to date. And it would actually make the government money without spending a dime.
   Lets look at some more numbers. Lets say out of the 4.3 million gay or lesbians, 100,000 of them got married. Average wedding costing $20,000, average honeymoon costing just over $8000 and an average of over $3000 spent buying gifts for the married couple. That comes out to $310,000,000 being put into the economy. I can't even begin to name all the different industries that are required for the modern day wedding, from linen makers to horse carriage rental services. The government will even benefit by selling more marriage licenses and passports, collecting the taxes on all this newly spent money. And don't forget divorces can actually cost more than a marriage.
   It really does seem like a win win. People would gladly shell out more money then they have any right to spend, the government wouldn't be funding part of the purchase (i.e. cash for clunkers) and our taxes wouldn't even have to go up. Realistically this may never happen. Despite the supposed separation of church and state, religious views tend to dominate the gay marriage argument. I will not say whether I think gay marriage is morally right or wrong because it doesn't really matter. Being engaged to a beautiful women I don't have to worry about it. I just have to do my part in stimulating the economy by saying those two little words every bride to be wants to hear. Yes dear.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Motivation to do Nothing

   What drives us? What motivates us to do anything? It has been said that with the right motivation anything is possible. But what happens when you are motivated to do nothing? I'm don't mean having no motivation, but instead, the motivation to make life as simple as humanly possible. You may say that this is the absence of motivation, however this is not the case.
   Some of the greatest things in the history of mankind were invented in the pursuit to do nothing. Here is just a short list of things that were invented in this very worth while pursuit, the wheel, the cotton gin, the automobile, the telephone, the internet, video games and nudie magazines. Sure some of these things were actually invented with more than one reason in mind, but all were invented to help society do as little as possible. Still not getting the connection? Well let me explain a couple of my examples.
   One of the first video games ever invented (actually it was the second), was called Tennis for Two. According to Brookhaven National Laboratory, Tennis for Two was invented in 1958 by a nuclear physicist named William Higinbotham. It was an archaic version of the game we now know as Pong. Now in his bio it says that he created it to give visitors of the Brookhaven National Laboratory something to do. However I would venture to guess the real reason he did it was because he always dreamed of becoming a great tennis player and challenging the likes of Pancho Gonzales. The problem being, he didn't really like exercising or going outside. So in his pursuit to play great tennis but still do as little as possible he quickly invented the most realistic version of electronic tennis know to man (to date of course). 
   Now nudie magazines is a different beast altogether. Earliest forms of the nudie mag appeared in France. It has been theorized this is because the French are adverse to showering and personal hygiene, therefore making it more difficult for them to find actual people willing take there clothes off. And so it began, one of the biggest industries in the world, started all because many people wanted a way to view scantily clad human beings without even getting of the couch, or showering, or learning basic social skills.
   Just thinking about all the new inventions that will help me do nothing really makes me giddy. I hope when I am old and ideally retired, I can do nothing but sit on the couch. It will be great I will just pop a few newly invented pills that keep your muscles looking like Brad Pitt in Fight Club, while I change the channel with the blink of an eye and a robotic monkey reads my thoughts and writes my blog. Of course I will probably have to work until I die to afford half that stuff.