Sunday, December 31, 2006

100 Coolest Things... #s 100 - 91

Here it is, finally... the absolute 100 Coolest Things in 2006, according to Yours Truly. Now, of course the question for you is, what makes something cool? What's cool for you might not be as cool for me, and vice versa, so I selected the 100 people, places, books, CDs, movies, DVDs, moments, experiences, foods and so on that made my year the best one I've had since 2005. Plus, I give you the links you need to investigate further.

What you won't find here is Jesus, Stephanie, Mom or any of my close friends. Naturally, Jesus and Stephanie is an automatic 1 and 2, while Mom is a solid 3rd, and we all know who the coolest are among Mikey, Wookiee, Ty and so forth, so why bother? This is the list after them.

Now, there are things like CDs and some movies on this list that existed before 2006, but this is the year I discovered it... so, without further ado, I give you the first part of

The 100 Coolest Things About 2006

100. The Brand New Heavies “Get Used To It”
Apparently, the lead singer, N’Dea Davenport, left the Heavies for a while, and they put out subpar music. For whatever the reason, she’s back and having not known what they sounded like before, I guess I’m glad, because this is just a funk-filled cd. I discovered, and bought, it at Starbucks, based on liking “All Fired Up” and “We’ve Got” but learned quickly its just a great album of rhythm, music and funk.

99. Michelle Malkin
You perhaps don’t know who Michelle Malkin is… well, think of her as a simple conservative blogger, sorta like me, only she’s on it every day, her blog filled with links and commentary on the biggest topics and news of the moment. Plus, she’s right up there with Sandra Oh as the hottest Asian I know.

98. Chris Daughtry singing “Hemorrhage”
It was perhaps one of the first few episodes of American Idol when bald Daughtry took the stage, after a whole hour of the same stuff—pop mostly—and even Pickles and My Girl McPhee who dazzle me always sounded the same… and then, Daughtry belted out Fuel’s “Hemorrhage”, in a performance I ended up watching three times via VCR. It rocked.

97. “Desperate Networks” by Bill Carter
A book I bought on a whim, just because the book jacket flap intrigued me, and it turned out to be a quick, highly entertaining read. It’s a behind the scenes look at some of the biggest shows on television now, entertaining because Desperate Housewives, Lost and American Idol really struggled to find their place on TV—and were passed on by other networks before finding their homes. And CSI’s William Petersen? He wanted to do a show about the Old West, before being talked into the part of Gil Grissom. It should be in paperback by now, or close to it… I recommend it.

96. Arby’s Four for $5
So, for five bucks, you get your choice of any four of the following: Jamocha shake, medium drink, potato cakes, curly fries, Arby’s melt sandwich, cheese sticks or some sort of fruit turnover. I chose the sandwich, fries, cheese sticks and a medium Mountain Dew. It’s a fried nightmare. Curse you Arby’s… curse you!

95. The Bowl
It wasn’t so much that it was my first bowl game, it was more that it was my first bowl game AND my first game from a luxury sky box. They had attendants there, serving up wings, fried chicken, sandwiches, drinks and so on, plus a huge seating area where we could watch the game in style. The real Papa John was two boxes over, as were Andre Ware and some other guy doing the ESPN2 commentary. Plus, the East Carolina’s chancellor was in the next box, and we could see him very unhappy as South Florida kept running up the score… plus, what looked to be his daughter was there as well, and I was highly amused by how bored she seemed the whole time. Good times.

94. “Casino Royale” starring Daniel Craig
Having never even been a big Bond fan at all, I didn’t know how I would like this movie. And the answer is: A lot. Instead of being filled with ridiculous gadgets and uber-fast cars, it actually had a feasible story. Watching Bond turn into a “Double-0” agent was cool, as was Daniel Craig’s entire take on the character, seemingly cheesed to death by Timothy Dalton and Pierce Brosnan. And Eva Green? She looked much better onscreen than in her profile.

93. “The Devil Wears Prada”
I thoroughly enjoyed this flick from beginning to end. Anna Hathaway has finally shed her “Princess Mia” image (being naked and cursing in “Havoc” and “Brokeback” will do that) to become a pretty good actress, and Emily Blunt is great as her rival-turned-ally assistant-counterpart, but the star of the movie is indeed Meryl Streep. She’s icy, she’s venomous and, it turns out, she’s human. A well done chick flick.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Perfect for a rainy Friday night movie on DVD, you could do alot worse than this funny chick flick.

92. Justin Long
How can you not like this guy? He was Brandon on Galaxy Quest, a Trekkie-type nerd forced to take out the garbage, and is again a nerd in “Dodgeball” (who ends up getting the
hot cheerleader), he took the lead in “Accepted”, Steph loved him in “Ed” and you probably now know him best as “Apple” in those Apple & PC commercials. He just seems like a guy that you’d enjoy hanging out with, or even poking fun at. Oh, and he's going to be starring alongside Bruce Willis in DieHard 4: These Movies Won't Die... Hard.

91. Iced Café Con Leche

Grande sized, filled with ice and six pumps of vanilla syrup, then with cold breve (half-n-half, for you non-Starbuckians), I’ve finally found a coffee drink that I enjoy and actually look forward to partaking of.

Next Up: #90 thru 81...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Maggie Gyllenhaal

Ah life... it happens. Between Starbucks, The DFC, WalkAbout drama, the dinner theater last week, Stephanie and KidStuf, I haven't had time to focus on anything not related to the previous six catagories, including blogging and catching up on Studio 60, Lost and Heroes.

Today is my day off, so I decided, darn it, I was going to blog a little. Put up some fun links, give you some ideas of movies and music you should see, and anytime I can mention Harry Potter, its a good thing.


So, I woke up this morning, rolled out of bed, brushed my teeth, used the lavatory, then laid back in bed so I could catch Local on the 8's (who doesnt' love Local on the 8's? Its an American institution).

From there, I started flipping channels, turning to USA to see character actor Paul Gleason (the principal from The Breakfast Club) chasing some blond kid who apparently has some paranormal power, and is in touch via walkie talkie to some computer named Art (which made me happy that the guy who voiced KITT found work again). I am wondering what kind of sci-fi flick this is... and right before I turn to the TV Guide Channel to find out, I hear the kid running, yelling into his walkie-talkie "Art! Art! Contact Ranger Walker!" So this is why Walker, Texas Ranger lasted 8 years. Great acting and solid story lines. (Did you know that Chuck Norris is like, 66 years old?)


My latest addiction? Audiobooks on my iPod. I check them out from the Hoover Public Library, then listen to them when I'm driving around or just around the house. Right now, I'm feasting on the Harry Potter series, and British narrator Jim Dale is awesome.

Speaking of Harry Potter, I just saw that trailer for Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix... holy crap. Loving that visual of all of them flying past Parliament.

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As far as I'm concerned, July can't come soon enough

Its my favorite of the books, featuring two of my favorite three scenes in all of the books, that being the creation of Dumbledore's Army and the ending battle in the Ministry of Magic (the other is when Harry kisses Ginny Weasley in Half-Blood Prince, since Ginny is my favorite character).


Under the catagory of "Stuff You Maybe Wanted to Discuss, But Were Afraid people Would Think You Were Creepy If You Did" comes The Top 10 Hottest Animated Disney Chicks. Personally, my top three would be: 3) Bo Peep from Toy Story... 2) Belle from Beauty and the Beast, who was #1 on my own list until 1) Meghera from Hercules came along.

Wow, did I just say that?


I love it. Premiere Magazine has listed their 20 Most Overrated Movies of All Time. I can agree with some of these--as in, I like them, but I didnt think they were end all beat all (Chicago, Field of Dreams, Forrest Gump)... and some of these I hated (Moonstruck, Gone with the Wind)... and of course, some don't deserve to be on this list (Disney's Fantasia, The Wizard of Oz)

Its those movies that "everyone loves but you didn't think were any good"... for me, that would be Meet the Parents and Good Will Hunting.

And because I love countdowns and lists, Blender's "Most Disastrous Albums of All Time" list cracks me up. I mean, remember Garth Brooks Chris Gaines' project? And as much as I liked pre-skank Mariah, I will admit, "Glitter" was a horrible cd.

By the way, just heard Kellie Pickler's new song "Red High Heels". Loved it. I'll be honest... as time has gone by, I can't promise you that Pickles hasn't passed My Girl McPhee in my heart. I am interested in hearing Kat's new cd (due in January) but I am actually excited about getting Pickles' cd, out now.

Speaking of American Idol... if "Do I make You Proud" turns your stomach the wrong way, check out this video on YouTube... Weird Al did a parody, a stalker anthem called "Do I Creep you Out" (with sweet lines likes "...everytime I shake your hand, I want to stick your fingers in my mouth...") and its been laid over video of Taylor Hicks singing. Hysterical.


And while we're on the subject of stomach turning video, perhaps some of you heard Rick and Bubba talk about the Dean and Company Christmas specials. Dean & Co is a family who... well, sings, and uses a sock puppet named Podo to entertain as well. And its... well, its... I mean, you can say its... um... well... Abracadabra.

Two things to note: This is not a skit--this is a serious group... and the monkey? That's Podo.


I think Dalton Ross is genius (you'll see him in the Dave's 100 Coolest Things about 2006). He does a great blog on Entertainment Weekly's site, and here's his take on the new Rocky movie... and strangely, perhaps like someone who throws up shoelaces, I am replused by it, yet strangely fascinated...

It's hard to take Rocky too seriously considering in the previous three films (leading up to Rocky Balboa) the Italian Stalion has faced a dude with a Mohawk, an Apollo Creed-killing Russian pumped full of Roids, and then...well, I try to block out Rocky 5 as much as possible. But a new Collector's Edition DVD of the original Rocky reminds us how special that first film was. Not only does it feature the best movie quote of all time — ''You're gonna eat lightnin' and you're gonna crap thunder!'' — but it also comes across as mildly realistic (as opposed to all the sequels, which — don't get me wrong — are genius, but on a purely campy level). The new disc features three commentary tracks as well as an hour-long documentary featuring new interviews with everyone involved still around to talk about it (Burgess Meredith — R.I.P.) and needless to say, it's a knockout.


So, George Clooney won Sexiest Man Alive once again. People Magazine actually called me, and told me I came in 14th in the voting. Ahead of me was Orlando Bloom and McDreamy Patrick Dempsey, but apparently I came in ahead of Jack Black, Tom Cruise and the Geico Caveman.

Sexiest Woman Alive? My wife. Duh. Behind her? And might I say waaaaaaay behind Stephanie... Kate Winslet, Cate Blanchett, Jenni Dunnivent, Sandra Oh, Sarah Chalke, Giuliani Depandi and Maggie Gyllenhaal.

The Last Five Songs that Played on my iPod, currently on "Shuffle All Songs""
"Sir Duke" by Stevie Wonder... "Push" by Matchbox 20... "Don't Leave Me This Way" by Thelma Houston... "Do You Know" by tobyMac... "Before We Ever Heard Goodbye" by Deana Carter
Four Movies I Can't Wait to See:

Four Shows I'm Crazy About:
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, WWE Raw, this season's Survivor and Heroes

Two Performances You Should Go See Right Now:
Daniel Craig in Casino Royale (even if you don't like Bond, you'll love Craig) and Maggie Gyllenhall in Stranger than Fiction (the more I think about it, the more I realize that were she not in this film, I don't think I would have liked it)
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Not only is Maggie sexy, she's one of the main reasons to see Stranger than Fiction

Two books I'm currently reading:
"Death of the WCW" by RD Reynolds & Brian Alverez and "Burnt Toast" by Teri Hatcher.
Two Audiobooks I'm currently listening to:
One CD You Must Go Buy, Like, Right Now:

"Blue on Blue" by Leigh Nash


Coming up... I'm currently, still, compiling my 100 Coolest Things about 2006 list, for later on this month. Its my take on the best people, places, things, foods, movies, books, music and everything else that I discovered these past 12 months.

Also... The Dave Hall of Fame. I think everyone needs a hall of fame. Stuff, people, events that are so cherished and important that they deserve a special honor. When I get that put together, I will post that too.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Yes, yes, I'm still alive. Got back from the beach last week (perhaps I'll get around to talking about that), immediately hit the ground rolling with work, dinner theater rehearsals and show (which is tomorrow night), KidStuf, WalkAbout, Harry Potter and being married--which unfortunately falls in that order, and this is just so wrong of me.

Anyway, here's a segment I like to call "SONGS THAT CHANGED DAVE'S LIFE". I was sending out an email to the cast of the dinner theater at Valleydale Church (an sbc fellowship) and made mention of the wonderful news that is Grace. This song came to mind--all about just... well, disappearing into what God has us to be. Grace abounds and I'm the chief abuser. Changed my life. With the fantastic Christine Dente on vocals, and her husband Scott with back-up vocals, here's husband & wife duo Out of the Grey with "Disappear".

Hidden, so well hidden in this picture, why can't I be drawn outside these lines?
Willing just to vanish in Your shadow, what would wear away this thin disguise?
Surrounded by myself, I get so tired of me
I know, I know what I need

Wish I could disappear
Inside You, disappear
Hidden in the way I was intended to be
Closer to You, and farther from me
I would disappear

Given, I've been given so much freedom
Yeah, grace abounds and I'm the chief abuser
Been living in a house that I've contructed out of anything
that makes me feel good and safe and right
But the consequence of choices so easily made
Is an empty place I'd eagerly trade

If I could disappear
Inside you, disappear
Hidden in the way I was intended to be
Closer to you, and farther from me
I would disappear

Pulling focus from myself, got to see somebody else, coming closer, getting near, I would disappear
And I'm pulling focus from myself, I get to see somebody else, everything is coming clear, disappear

I would disappear

Just disappear

ps... if you go to Valleydale Church (an sbc fellowship) you'll get this final remark--I'd pay top dollar to hear Vickie McGee, Patty Cato or Robyn Meredith sing this at church.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

What Movies Teach Me

It's been a week since the election, and you are probably thinking "Wow, Dave is pretty upset... that's why he hasn't blogged in a week..." Well, no. I was a little miffed about it all on Wednesday, but life goes on.

Truth is, I've been just really, really busy. Amazingly busy, looking forward to a great vacation coming up next week. I'm also working on my list of "100 Coolest Things of 2006", and also considering what will be the inaugaral class of "Dave's Hall of Fame"--more on that later.

But for now, feast on this... something I found a while back, and it made me laugh really, really loud:

110 Things I've Learned from the Movies

1. If you try hard enough, you can outrun an explosion.

2. If your town is threatened by an imminent natural disaster or killer beast, the mayor's first concern will be the tourist trade or his forthcoming art exhibition.

3. Natural disasters only occur after the local mayor scoffs at the possibility.

4. If an expert makes a prediction and is disbelieved, then it will come to pass exactly as he predicted. If he makes a prediction and is believed, it won't happen.

5. Women staying in a haunted house should investigate any strange noises while wearing their most revealing underwear.

6. Women's skin and hair can't be damaged by natural disasters, though their clothing can be shredded -- except for the bits required for minimal decency, which are made from completely indestructible fabric.

7. If a man and a woman are exposed to the same conditions and the same environment, the man will need to wear more clothing than the woman.

8. If a man and a woman meet under circumstances under which any two normal people would instantly hate each other, they will marry before the picture is over.

9. White characters have the best survival rate.

10. High class strippers with a heart of gold can will, if the plot demands it, turn out to have specialized technical skills and abilities.

11. All bombs are fitted with electronic timing devices with large red readouts so you know exactly when they're going to go off.

12. It's easy to pull the pin on a grenade with your teeth.

13. An explosive device capable of leveling a large office building will fit inside a toolbox or small backpack.

14. Any lock can be picked by a credit card or a paper clip in seconds -- unless it's the door to a burning building with a child trapped inside.

15. Cars that crash will almost always burst into flames.

16. A million dollars in cash or cocaine will invariably take up exactly the amount of space available in your briefcase.

17. The universal medical procedure is defibrillation. Any time an EMT appears in a scene he/she will defibrillate someone before going back home. ER doctors defibrillate all patients, regardless of complaint.

18. If defibrillation doesn't work, the best way to revive someone whose heart has stopped is to scream "You can't do this to me! I love you (expletive of choice)" at them.

19. A cup of black coffee/splash of cold water in face is enough to render the most inebriated person stone cold sober.

20. Creepy music coming from a graveyard should always be closely investigated.

21. The Chief of Police is always black.

22. If an investigation proves difficult, a Chief of Police will either suspend his star detective or give him 48 hours to finish the job. A detective can only solve a case once he has been suspended from duty.

23. Police departments give their officers personality tests to make sure they are deliberately assigned a partner who is their total opposite.

24. During all police investigations it will be necessary to visit a strip club at least once.

25. Action heroes never face charges for manslaughter or criminal damage despite laying entire cities to waste.

26. If you need to reload your gun, you will always have more ammunition -- even if you haven't been carrying any before now.

27. The more people there are firing at you, the less likely they are to hit you.

28. You can only threaten someone with a gun if you are within arm's reach of them.

29. If a man with a machine gun and a man with a pistol have a gunfight, the man with the pistol will win.

30. One man shooting at twenty men has a better chance of killing them all than twenty men firing at one.

31. Guns are like disposable razors. If you run out of bullets, just throw the gun away. You can always find a new one lying around the next time you need one.

32. Give a man one gun and he's Superman. Give him two, and he's God.

33. No one ever aims at the legs of a monster that's chasing them. They just keep running away, pausing every now and then to pump bullets into its torso, until it overtakes and kills them.

34. No matter how dead you think you've killed a bad guy, he can still get up at least three more times.

35. It is possible to use a helicopter to sneak up on someone.

36. A monster can always sneak up on you, no matter how big or clumsy it is.

37. It's easy to walk through an unfamiliar forest on a moonless night.

38. A leap from a hotel roof is completely safe as long as you can land in the pool (and it’s a good thing those dumpsters people jump in are always filled with soft materials)

39. Most laptop computers are powerful enough to handle realtime videophone contact, and can override the communication systems of any invading alien civilization.

40. The feasibility of an idea is inversely proportional to its initial apparent plausibility.

41. All writers are wealthy; all publishing companies are glamorous; all artists are self-supporting and have large attractive well-lit loft studios.

42. If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St. Patrick's Day parade -- no matter what time of year it is. If you can't find a St. Patrick's Day parade, try for a Chinese New Year celebration and hide in the dragon.

43. A pudgy older star who's visibly falling behind his partner during a chase scene will catch up with him while the camera's looking away.

44. If a gas station and a man with a machine gun appear in the same scene, before the scene ends the gas station will explode. The same is true of fuel drums.

45. If you are trapped in a tunnel, in a sinking ship, or a burning building, a cute little girl, a nun and/or a feisty granny will be trapped with you.

46. It's easy for anyone to land a plane, provided there is someone in the control tower to talk you down.

47. The ventilation system of any building is the perfect hiding place. No one will ever think of looking for you in there. And you can travel to any other part of the building you want without difficulty.

48. No ship, base, or compound ever has more than one emergency radio.

49. By the 24th century the concepts of circuit breakers, fuses, and uninterruptable power
supplies will have been lost.

50. Although in the 20th century it is possible to fire weapons at an object out of our visual range, people of the 23rd century will have lost this technology.

51. In the future, everyone will spend their time standing around explaining everyday objects and practices to each other in terms of their Twentieth-Century equivalents.

52. No monster-killing strategery can be used more than once, even if it only failed through some bizarre fluke. Neither can it be refined and tried again. You have to start over with a completely different approach.

53. No matter how badly a spaceship is attacked, its internal gravity system is never damaged.

54. All aliens have single monolithic culture: one language, one religion, one outfit, one planet.

55. Good chess players can see fifteen or twenty moves ahead, in detail, from a middle game, where there are still many pieces on the board.

56. It does not matter if you are heavily outnumbered in a fight involving martial arts -- your enemies will wait patiently to attack you one by one by dancing around in a threatening manner until you have knocked out their predecessors.

57. You're very likely to survive any battle in any war -- unless you make the mistake of showing someone a picture of your sweetheart back home.

58. Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be necessary to speak the language. A German accent will do.

59. When they are alone, all foreigners prefer to speak English to each other.

60. You can see the Eiffel Tower from every window in Paris.

61. All telephone numbers in America begin with the digits 555.

62. A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating, but will wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.

63. Medieval peasants had perfect teeth.

64. The jungles of Vietnam were filled with Nautilus machines.

65. Stripping to the waist makes a man invulnerable to bullets.

66. Magical forces cluster in the visible portion of the electromagnetic spectrum.

67. Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.

68. All beds have special "L"-shaped sheets which reach up to the armpit level on a woman but only to waist level on the man lying beside her.

69. All grocery shopping bags used to contain a bunch of celery. Now they all contain a baguette.

70. Even when driving down a perfectly straight road, it is necessary to turn the steering wheel vigorously from left to right every few moments.

71. If there is a large bump in a downhill road, a speeding car will fly over it and hit the ground in shower of sparks. Unsecured passengers will not be injured, and no tire damage, broken axles, or suspension failures will occur. The car will then execute a sharp turn involving a skid.

72. A slight blow to the head can cause total amnesia, but neither that nor a blow sufficient to knock a person unconscious is enough to cause concussion or other brain damage.

73. Losing a hand causes the stump of your arm to grow six inches.

74. Gunshot wounds will not disable you as long as you still have an important task left to do.

75. No one dies in an elevated position without falling from there to the ground, even if they have to jump to do it.

76. Anyone who falls from a high place while dying will let out a loud sustained shriek, even if they've just been shot several times in the chest.

77. No one involved in a car chase, hijacking, explosion, volcanic eruption or alien invasion will ever go into shock.

78. Any government-developed virus or biological agent will have no known cure.

79. An electric fence, powerful enough to kill a dinosaur, will cause no lasting damage to an eight year old child.

80. Electricity will travel any distance through water to electrocute the villain, rather than go immediately to ground (e.g. a toaster tossed into the shallow end of a swimming pool will nail the bad guy over by the diving board).

81. You can only electrocute someone while you are looking directly at them.

82. Circuit breakers don't work.

83. Once applied, lipstick will never rub off -- even while scuba diving.

84. A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of Bryant-Denny Stadium.

85. Computer monitors never display a cursor on screen but will always say: Enter Password Now.

86. When paying for a taxi, don't look at your wallet as you take out a bill -- just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.

87. Kitchens don't have light switches. When entering a kitchen at night, you should open the fridge door and use that light instead.

88. If a phone line is broken, communication can be restored by frantically pressing the cradle switch and saying, "Hello? Hello?"

89. If there is a deranged killer on the loose, this will coincide with a thunderstorm that has brought down all the power and phone lines in the vicinity.

90. It is not necessary to say "Hello" or "Goodbye" when beginning or ending phone conversations.

91. During a very emotional confrontation, instead of facing the person you are speaking to, it is customary to stand behind them and talk to their back.

92. Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every morning even though their husband and children never have time to eat it.

93. Incriminating evidence will always be found as photograph number four in a stack, or in the next to bottom drawer. Important data storage will have labels like "tape of Senator Foggbotham with underage girl" or "List of all nuclear launch codes."

94. Most people keep a scrapbook of newspaper cuttings, especially if any of their family or friends has died in a strange boating accident.

95. Villains are fond of explaining everything to anyone in sight.

96. Villains are improbably competent and inventive, but can only make money by pulling stupid robberies. They will risk everything they have and are to get revenge on some guy who once thwarted them.

97. Rather than wasting bullets, megalomaniacs prefer to kill their arch-enemies using complicated machinery involving fuses, pulley systems, deadly gases, lasers and man eating sharks that will allow their captives at least 20 minutes to escape.

98. Any priest is either kindly or the villain. While nuns can deliver exposition, nuns are never villains.

99. If you decide to start dancing in the street, everyone you bump into will know all the steps.

100. It is always possible to park directly outside the building you are visiting.

101. Television news bulletins usually contain a story that affects you personally at that precise moment

102. Dogs always know who's bad and will naturally bark at them.

103. Most dogs are immortal.

104. Larry King plays himself.

105. The most unstable object in creation is a roadside fruit seller's cart.

106. If a large pane of glass is visible, someone will be thrown through it before long.

107. When you turn out the light to go to bed, everything in your room will still be clearly visible, just slightly bluish.

108. Light level is not a reliable gauge of whether it's night outside. You have to judge by the cricket noises.

109. You can always find a chainsaw when you need one.

110. All loose ends are always tied up.

Monday, November 06, 2006


Vote your heart.

I almost wrote another lengthy piece about the parties, the election, the candidates and my thoughts... but really, all I have to say is, vote your heart.

Back 20 years ago, it was hard to know who stood for what... all you had to go on was ABC, CBS and NBC news, and some cable station called CNN or whatever. You had newspapers, but that was the extent of any knowledge... you knew what you were told, and that was all.

Not today. With the internet explosion, especially in the last seven years, all the info you could ever want about anyone is here. So, if you are confused about whatto do when you step into the ballot box, first read my previous post. Then, do some searching on the world wide web.

Some sites I recommend?
The Drudge Report - from Matt Drudge, a columnist, who usually posts generally unbiased news and posts it quicker than most sites
Newsbusters - Matt Latta sent me this site one day, and I'm always find it interesting. Its a good response to what you hear in the media, and its got some great stuff right now on Keith Olbermann (I miss him so much on SportsCenter, when he would do sports and shut up)
The National Review - Another good site with some great reading about the election
The American Spectator - More conservative wisdom, including a great piece on a prediction that Republicans will hold on (something I've been saying for weeks, mind you)
Michelle Malkin - I love Michelle Malkin's site, full of links and video (some are not for kids, but its reporting what you don't see on CNN). She's my current celebrity girlfriend, and the hottest aAsian this side of Sandra Oh.
And, of course, my favorite talk show hosts and pundits, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity and the king, Rush Limbaugh.

Confused about what MSNBC is telling you about Rush making fun of Michael J. Fox's Parkinson's Disease? Didja know that Rush didn't make fun of Fox's condition? Read for yourself. Think it was doctored? I've got the segment on my iPod.

Gotta be fair... here's a couple of liberal sites. If I've taught you enough, you should be able to go to them, see through the distortions they push and come out thinking "Wow, Dave was right"
Michael Moore's site - The unofficial Vice President of the Liberal Movement (Hillary being President, natch)... any site that has a quote from Cindy Sheehan deserves to be laughed upon. Seriously, libs, can you really take Sheehan seriously?
Move On - The granddaddy of liberal sites, Move On proclaims "Democracy in Action". They actually called me the other day to ask if I'd be willing to volunteer to man a phone bank. Part of me wanted to say "Sure!", but I was afraid I'd get shot when they overheard me telling someone how good the economy was, and how there are success stories in Iraq after all. I respectfully declined.
Democratic Underground - They have their own "Vote Republican If..." list, including one that made me laugh out loud: "Vote Republican If You Hate the Military". One of the high points: a defense of John Kerry, who won numerous medals and went to Vietnam. Of course, I liked it because it made me feel smart... I could poke holes through 75% of their arguments, claims and out-of-context-and-sometimes-completely-misquoted quotes.

Anyway, vote your heart. Remember your morals.
Are you in favor of immigration legislation, or do you want to see amnesty for illegal aliens?
Are you pro-life or pro-choice?
Are you a believer in God or someone who thinks religion should only be in private?
Are you for marriage between a man and a woman, or all about letting whoever marry?
Are you for continued adult stem cell research, or for embryonic stem cell research?
Do you believe that the military is doing its job in Iraq, or are you for cutting and running (which is the best way I can put an immediate pull-out)?

If you believe what you believe, be proud of it and vote that. I'll talk to you when its all over.

Friday, November 03, 2006

By All Means, Vote Democrat

Well, well, well. I've gone over what I'm going to say here, probably for a few weeks. I wanted to put forth the best posting I could, giving you facts and stats, without resorting to too many opinions for fear of losing Democratic and/or liberal readers before they understand what I'm trying to say (thanks Jaci!)

So, I've decided to give you the straight up truth on what will happen if the Democrats win control of Congress on November 8th.

If you are a Lib or a Dem, like my buddy Jenni in NYC (who called me her silly little Republican) then you should be excited about what you're about to read, because all your wildest dreams will come true.

If you are conservative and/or Republican, then you should be a little wary of what might happen.

And if you are undecided, or one of those who is thinking, "Wow, the Republicans have goofed all of this up, maybe its time for a change," then hopefully this will help you make your decision. I also invite your questions and comments, and even challenges, to the comments section.

By all means, vote Democrat, if you want: Defeat in Iraq... a 100% liberal running the House... a blow to the soaring economy... a continuation of media hypocrisy... years of investiagtions on your tax dollars... a repeal of tax cuts... federal funding for embryonic stem cell research... amnesty for illegal immigrants... the Democratic Party to run the country....

IF YOU WANT to see a defeat in Iraq, then by all means, vote Democrat.
The Democratic party is rooted and invested in the defeat of the United States in Iraq. Every step of the way, Democratic leader has made comments and taken actions that have not only undermined our troops, but also our effort in Iraq and even Afghanistan.
The NYTimes is reporting the US posting of Iraqi documents on Saddam's actual plans to build an atomic bomb--as in, the blueprints... and they were less than a year away. Now, you'd think that the story would be "Wow, perhaps Saddam was a more dangerous man than we thought, perhaps he was closer to WMDs--or had them--than we thought." No, the liberal response is "Bush is incompetant for posting this type of information for Iran to see!"

Of course, the NYTime revealing the
foreign communications spying program (notice I said "foreign", not "domestic"), plus the terrorist financial tracking programs (even after the White House called the editor and asked them to not publish the story) is NOT information that should be kept secret... the public has a right to know, right?

The bottom line is, if the Democratic gain control of Congress, we will lose the war on terror. There will be put forth
a timeline for withdrawal of our troops, which will lead to a slowdown of terrorist activity. This lessening of terrorist attacks will give Democrats, and the US, a false sense of security, and when we remove our forces from Iraq, the country will collapse.

We will then be looked at, once again,
as a "paper tiger" by our enemies, just like Jimmy Carter made us seem with the Iran hostage crisis in 1980, just like Bill Clinton made us seem in October 1993 with Mogadishu (Black Hawk Down) and the withdrawal of troops in Somolia shortly thereafter.

If you think that Democratic leaders support this war effort, or even that most of them still support the troops, remember Joe Lieberman from Connecticut? He's one of the only Dems who support the war effort--and the Democratic party has completely thrown him under the bus in every way, putting support behind Ned LaMent, who's been outspoken in his (ignorant?) war criticism

And there will be another attack on American soil, not because we can't stop it, but because we won't stop it.

IF YOU WANT Nancy Pelosi to be the Speaker of the House and leader of Congress, then by all means, vote Democrat.
Good ol Nancy, D-CA, is all in a tizzy that she might be the most powerful woman in politics not named Hillary. The thought of this alone makes me want to vote straight Republican.

Let me tell you about Nancy Pelosi. She's recieved at least a 95% liberal rating from the AMericans for Democratic Action (the nation's premier liberal group) every year for the last six years. NARAL Pro-Choice America gave her a 100% rating, while the National Right to Life Committee gave her a 0% rating.

She's voted against welfare reform, proposed constitutional amendments permitting school prayer, a $400 billion dollar Medicare bill (because she liked the one twice as expensive, mind you) and tax cuts.

She has also opposed any drilling anywhere in our country, particularly ANWR, all the while criticizing the Bush Administration for our foreign dependance on oil.

Pelosi also has repeated opposed a missile-defense system, all while watching North Korea test their so-called nuclear weapons. But, as I said, if you are a liberal, you'll want all of these things.

By contrast, the American Conservative Union gave current Speaker of the House Denny Hastert a 100% conservative rating. Pelosi? 0%. This is how much will change.

IF YOU WANT to see an end to the historic low employment ratings, an end to the roaring economy, then by all means, vote Democrat.
In going everywhere from the bank to Taco Bell, I see "Now Hiring" signs. Do you know wny? Because employment is so fraggin' high! Unemployment is like, 4%!!! If you want a job, there is no excuse to not get one.
The tax cuts work. The Dow Jones industrial numbers are hitting record high, and even though I've read reports that the reasoning behind this high number is faulty, even if you take away 1,000 points, this country is still rocking. When Pelosi raises our taxes, this will change.

IF YOU WANT to see a continued pattern of hypocrisy in the media, concerning racism, intolerance and hate, then by all means, vote Democrat.
George Allen (R-VA) called a staffer for his opponent in the upcoming election "Macaca". He said, "This fellow here, over here with the yellow shirt, macaca, or whatever his name is. He's with my opponent. He's following us around everywhere. And it's just great..." The word "macaca" is actually a monkey, or it could mean a racial slur in Africa. The kid was Indian. The Demorats went nuts.

Jim Webb (D) is Allen's opponent. He's a novelist as well who likes to
write scenes concerning sexual perversions, (warning: link not for the weak-hearted) including scenes with boys and men together. But this is okay, because hey, its a free country, right?

Remember Trent Lott (R-MS)? He was at a birthday party for then-alive Strom Thurmond,
and made this comment: "I want to say this about my state. When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We're proud of him. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems over all these years, either..." Boy, this is bad. Thurmond was a segregationalist in the 40s and 50s, so for Lott to say this (off the cuff, jokingly, at a private function mind you) is reprehensible... this means that Trent Lott wants to see segregation come back! He apologized, but we see who he really is! Racist!

Hillary Clinton,
speaking at a fund-raiser in 2004: "I ran into Mahatma Gandhi once. He ran a gas station in St. Louis." But she apologizes for stereotyping that only Indian people work at gas stations, so it was just a poor attempt at humor. That's okay.

Senator Joe Biden (D-DE),
speaking to an Indian-American activist in New Hampshire: "You cannot go into a Dunkin' Donuts or a 7-Eleven unless you have a slight Indian accent." But, this is okay because he went on CNN or MSNBC, and the reporter asked him "Will you clarify your comments?"... he did, and all is forgiven, right?

Oh yeah, and here's
Joe Lieberman, courtesy of a liberal on The Huffington Post (a very liberal website)... remember, Lieberman supports our troops and war. But its not racist, its all meant in fun.

Oh yeah, lest we forget John Kerry, who served in Vietnam...

IF YOU WANT a continued characterization of our military and our war efforts to be a fruitless venture, then by all means, vote Democrat.
Watch the news: What you see is prisoners abused in Abu Graib. What you see is attacks on soldiers,
including sniper attacks, in Iraq. What you see is video from Al Quida beheading our men and women. What you see is terrorists burning flags and dancing in the streets, shouting death to America. You see this because you have a right to know.

What you don't see: Prisoners in Abu Graib tossing feces at soldiers, ripping apart their Koran and shoving it in the toilet to get soldiers in trouble. What you don't see is planes flying into towers. What you don't see is people jumping to their deaths to avoid being burned alive 1,100 feet in the air. What you don't see is hospitals, houses, schools, mosques and sewer systems being built in Iraq and Afghanistan by our soldiers. What you don't see is the capture and killing of Al Quida leaders. You don't see this because its either not news, or its too soon--you can't handle this.

If you want to see the next year or more of the government's time tied up in subpoenas and investigation hearings, then by all means, vote Democrat
I have nothing to add to this, other than I know its coming. Democrats are livid that the war is continuing, and most have changed their position on it. Most liberals act as if there was no terrorist prior to 9/11, or prior to Bush taking office, and most have gone along the theory that America is creating terrorists.

Democrats want to know why Bush misled this country into war, even though they had total access to the same information to make a decision on voting.
Democrats want to find out why Bush cried "WMD" when none have been found, though mountains of evidence has proven that they existed in the 1990s, even if they haven't found a big missle with a sign that says "Death to America" on it.
Democrats want to know why we aren't doing more with North Korea and Iran, when they were asking why we weren't doing more about Iraq and Afghanistan before the war began.

If you want to have all of the tax cuts repealed, the minimum wage immediately raised to $7.25 with no discussion of impact, and federal money to fund ALL types of stem cell research--including embryonic, all possibly in the first 100 hours, then by all means, vote Democrat.
The aforementioned Nancy Pelosi has already said that when she becomes Speaker of the House, she will do this and more in her first 100 hours in power. I honestly cannot tell you the pros and cons of raising the minimum wage, so I won't even try to discuss it, and to her credit, Pelosi has also said she wants to cut student loan interest rates.

But as for stem cell research? As far as embryonic goes, I'm totally against it because, simply, its accomplished NOTHING. Absolutely nothing. Now might it work one day? Possibly. But adult stem cell research is currently working, so why stop a working program to venture out on something that may never work, all the while adding fuel to the abortion debate?

This topic has been in the news due to the
Michael J. Fox ad, campaigning for a candidate who has issues MJF apparentely doesn't fully disclose, and for an amendment that MJF admittedly hasn't read (which is NOT about stem cell research, but actually about human cloning), and the reaction from Rush Limbaugh who the media has crucified over context and comments he didn't make. If anyone could tell you that Rush said, I could, trust me.

IF YOU WANT total amnesty for illegal immigrants, plus the dismissal of the 700 mile Border Wall proposal, by all means, vote Democrat.
Simply put, not only to Democrats want to grant citizenship for the millions of illegal immigrants here, but also to allow them to attend colleges on scholarship or in-state tuition, reap health care benefits and possibly re-unite them with their families in their home country, all on your tax dime.

IF YOU WANT the Republicans to lose, maybe to teach them a lesson, darn it, then by all means, vote Democrat.
Perhaps the Republicans deserve to lose. I mean, they haven't put forth a great policy on immigration yet. The war is Iraq, though in mind successful thusfar, has been plagued with problems. However, if the Democrats take Congress, not only will Republicans lose, anyone with conservative values and morals lose as well.

IF YOU WANT the Democratic Party to run this show called America, then by all means, vote Democrat.
The Democratic Party, as it stands currently, is led by liberals who sole purpose is power. Power at whatever cost. To those who stand in the way of that power, they will not just disagree, but lie about and ruin. The media that caters to them, including NYTimes, Washington Post, CNN, CBS News etc, is doing everything possible to run all the bad news of the war on terror and none of the hundreds of great things happening there.

This is a party who creates a "victim" mentality and uses it to their advantage. This is a party who has no solid stance on the economy (other than to say its bad!), and has
no clear plan for national security. They want to raise our taxes, keep us dependent on foreign oil and use your raised tax dollars to continue funding those who don't want to do anything for themselves.

This is a party who only caters to women, blacks, hispanics, homosexuals, the sick and the elderly when it caters to their agenda, and not before. This is a party who had to have a
"Spiritual Activism Conference" to determine how they feel about God and the Christians in America.

The Democratic Party cannot contribute to the arena of ideas, to the arena of solutions to the problems plaguing this country, but instead use bashing, name calling, cries of "racism!" and "intolerance" and "hatred" when it is their own party members who do the same thing to anyone who does not follow what they stand for, whatever it is.
The Democratic Party is no longer the party of great presidents like John F. Kennedy and Harry Truman... they are the party filled with kook-fringe liberals who lied about Katrina and its aftermath, they lied about Karl Rove and Valerie Plame, they lie about the war in Iraq, they lied about Bush's National Guard Record in 2004 (creating forged documents to do it, eventually firing Dan Rather but giving him some media award anyway), they lie about the ecomony, the lie and seek to ruin judicial nominees (because according to libs, every conservative nominee will turn back the clock on race relations, women's rights, civil rights, human rights and so on)... this is your Democratic Party of America.

A commonly asked Q&A session to fill you in what you read in the papers and what the truth is.

PS... Your
Democratic Underground movement: It's things like this that make me support population control. Theocons have no respect to the enviroment, Gawd told them to multiply like rabbits and that protecting the enviroment isn't needed because they think Jebus is gonna come down a rapture them. These people are dangerous and should not be allowed to have more kids then secular people do.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Cap'n Dave's Fun Time

It's time for another session of ramblings, links and fun stuff to make your day go by faster...

Holy crap...
Reese and Ryan are splitting? This makes me sad. She's so hot. He's... well, he's not, but still...


I'm starting to think about my "Top 100 Coolest Things of 2006" list already... this is important to think about. You may remember my 2005 list, but since life has gotten even better this year (and a little better every day that I'm married to Stephanie), I figured I should start thinking about it now.

Some of the entries you can expect to see on the list?
Kid Sister, Heroes, X3, the iPod, John Cena and Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip... please, please NBC, don't cancel it.

Oh yeah... and

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Where will Pickles rank on the Coolest 100 Things of 2006? Stay Tuned.


Vh1 is listing their 100 Greatest Songs of the 80s... which is on right now. I haven't really seen the list, but I gotta say, some stuff that should make the list:
"Only in My Dreams" by Debbie Gibson
"Roam" by B-52s
"Kiss" by Prince
"Say Say Say" by Michael Jackson & Paul McCartney
and of coure, "Head Over Heels " by Tears for Fears, my #5 favorite song of all time.


Before My Girl McPhee, before Kate Winslet, before Izzie... there was Ashley Judd, my first celebrity girlfriend... luvs me some Ashley Judd, I'd watch her in anything (and have... have you ever seen Eye of the Beholder? Yeesh...)

Anyway, its good to see she has another movie coming out, one that actually might be worth its admission. (and for those of you saying "Dave! You're married to Stephanie!", you're right... but Steph feels the same way about Colin Firth. So its a trade off)


Speaking of Izzie, who loves Grey's Anatomy? We do. We've suddenly become obsessed with it... we rented the first dvd, we borrowed the second one (and are working our way through it). Stephanie loves George, but her favorite is Dr. Bailey. Though I'm hot for Izzie, I've always liked Sandra Oh... she just seems like someone that would be fun to hang out with.

And I can't be the only one who doesn't think that Meredith Grey is all the good looking...

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
From "My Father the Hero" cuteness to "Grey's Anatomy" hotness...


And speaking of my lively wife Stephanie, she's laughing hysterically in another room at this movie... which I think is funny in itself.

By the way, does anyone else have a wife that comes in and sits in your lap right at the end of a two hour show? John Cena is taking on Coachman, with King Booker and the Big Show in the corner, and I missed most of it. There are worse things, I guess.


Here's a fun movie game... I could only get 14 out of 20, and I thought I was pretty good at it.


This is an interesting little video on YouTube... its a Dove Commercial that shows you just how fake some advertisements really are. When they stretch the neck, that's freaky.


What a great little article on it asks the question "What is the movie everyone loved but you?" You know, those flicks that everyone in the world tells you is fabulous, and you almost feel silly not liking it... listed on this is "Notting Hill" and "Titanic", which I actually loved both, but the movie I can think of that everyone loves but me... is "Meet the Parents". I wanted to laugh more. I never saw "Meet the Fockers"... I don't think I could take it.


Have you heard Leigh Nash's new album, "Blue on Blue"? She's the former lead singer of Sixpence None the Richer, with a very distinct, melodic voice. And the album is pretty good.

Computer is running full strength now... don't forget, we've got an election next week. And I'll hopefully have lots to say, if my buddy Jaci and my wife Stephanie don't guilt me into being quiet.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

How To Be An Effective Leader (and other things I didn't learn in kindergarten)

For the record, I'm still at the Hoover Public Library. And I think the last time I was here, I heard Soul For Real's "Candy Rain", just like I'm hearing now. 4,397 songs on the iPod, and that one comes up twice... amazing. "Always Be My Baby" by Mariah is next, though.

The computer works now, the transplant was successful. Our friend Brad Mac came over, did the surgery, and now the computer is in physical therapy... which means, we have to get a new network card. So, I have a computer, I just don't have a network card that functions as well as... well, at all. No 'net... but that's okay. I watched four episodes of "Jericho" yesterday on videotape, and it rocked.

We put in a new hard drive, worth about 120 gigs, and all my iPod music is on it now. So, I can fill my iPod up to the full 60 gigs, instead of keeping it around 20, because my hard drive was only 40. Gettin' all this? Anyway, the downside is, not being able to connect to the net, I can't update my iPod because I had to re-install iTunes, then move over all my music to iTunes again, to which the iPod now thinks its a different computer, so I have to "authorize" the computer so I can make the changes and updates, but I can't because I can't get on the internet and... well, you get the picture.

Had a meeting with our manager at the Bucks today. It was a little disheartening, so I thought I would just open up here and ramble a bit, knowing there is a chance that someone from the store might actually read this. I'll take that chance.

Apparently, there are three things that are hurting my ability to be an effective assistant manager at Starbucks:
1) Few people at the store know me. I mean, they know who I am, but they don't know me.
2) Communicating effectively to the team at the store
2) Building relationships with the team. For whatever reason, these three things are becoming the hardest obsticles I've ever had to jump, possibly because I've never had trouble doing it anywhere else.

I would like to think that I'm respected and have some sort of influence at church, and I'd also like to think that I have that same respect and influence with my circle of friends and loved ones. Just not at work. Perhaps I'm not connecting the two very well, and its time to let one bleed to the other.

One thing I've pinpointed is that this is the first time I've ever been in a position where I've had people under me. I mean, I've been a shift supervisor for probably, I don't know, three years prior to being an assistant manager, so I had to lead, but this is the first time I've ever directly had the power to call the important shots and do what is necessary to get the job done without a host of people to answer to--right now, there is only one or two to answer to.

(the fact that KT Tunstall's "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" just came on the iPod shuffle makes my day just a little better... couple that with an encouraging email from K-Swiss, and life isnt bad at all)

Also, I'm a task oriented person. I struggle with delegating things to people, because simply, I have a way I want things done, and usually its quicker for me to just do it the way I want it done then to teach someone the way I want it done. Yeah, that's really a good trait to have. =) I gotta work on that.

Another thing is, the team doesn't really know me that well. Part of that is my fault, I'm guessing... I don't really go around announcing facts about me like being from Samson, Alabama, or that I was at the Olympic bombing of 1996, or that I have four older sisters, but then again, I don't really ask other people stuff like that either. Something else to make a mental note on.

My team at the store are some great people. I've proven that I can do the job and do it effectively... now I've got to prove to be a leader--or at least, prove to them I can do it. Other people in other parts of my life know I can lead. Or I think they do. Do they?

If it sounds like I'm upset, don't take it as such. I was for about twenty minutes after our meeting--which is how I roll: if I get frustrated, mad, upset or whatever, I let it seep and dwell for about 20 minutes or so, 20 minutes is all I'll give the unwelcome emotion, then I'm over it. Then I work on solving the problem.

So no, I'm not upset. Now its a matter of "Can I influence people positively, and how do I go about doing it without sounding disingenious?" and "How can I lead and delegate without soundling like I'm brash and barking out orders?"
The answers? When I figure those out, I'll tell you. For now, this is my reflection.
And remember, when two things are constant: God loves me, and it's just coffee. Such is life.