Friday, June 20, 2008

What's in YOUR Tomato?

Nobody Flashes Anymore!

So---You think that tomato that you dumped out of your Taco Bell Taco today might have had your name on it? Did you skip your favorite Burger King Whopper and just got the double order of fries for lunch, minus the Ketchup?

Were you afraid to tell your wife the real reason you didn't eat her leftover tomato and pasta recipe from grandma?

Do you wonder just what this kid did to grow this tomato? Does he have a Mexican cousin staying with him who likes to go outside at night into the family garden when the family restroom is being hoarded by his sisters?

And are you the kind of American who thinks this scare will be over soon, and besides, you're not scared because you happen to have the intestinal fortitude of the Jolly Green Giant?

Well...think again Tomato Head!

According to this guy, who should know, this is not the first time that the American people have suffered from salmonellosis by eating tomatoes here in America...oh no...

  • Here's a list of people harmed by Tomatoes so far---
  • 1990---174 people were attacked.
  • 1993--- 84 (salads were not yet mandatory for fat people)
  • 1999----86 (the same tomato loving people, two got married.)
  • 2002---141, in 32 states! Unfortunately---all these people had gone to the same
  • party in Orlando...the U.S. Transplant Games. Who needed
  • intestinal transplants when they got home, so it was a good thing
  • it wasn't a party for the FDA or they would not have lived.
  • 2002---404, people got sick in 22 states. Fortunately, the media rushed out with
  • the pictures of Iraq's being tortured scandal, or McDonald's
  • might have suffered a quarterly report.
  • 2004---564, I think Brittany Spears was at this party.
  • 2006---100, plus another 183, in 19 states.
  • 2007---500, but it's only June! Just think what this might do if Obama refuses to eat one!
I don't know about you...but news does travel slow, doesn't it? I wonder when they are going to tell us that all the pickles are filled with ebola? 2012?


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Skyscrapers Not Allowed!

Nobody Wins; Yesterday, one of Rupert Murdoch’s beautiful blond Fox fillies was reporting about how extremely busy the rest of the world was---building huge skyscrapers with “oil” money, as if the news was brand new to her. Skyscrapers that not only were taller than Chicago’s Sears Tower, but had new innovations never before seen, not even by Brad Pitt! Her eyes got real big.

Go ahead. Rub it in.

Actually, you won’t see these foreign skyscrapers on our televisions much. Our politicians keep strict control on that kind of stuff. It’s too embarrassing to them. They will show you the starving people in Mexico, but heaven forbid they show you the vast wealth in Hong Kong or Dubai.

People are mad enough at the gas pump.

They also leave out the fact that all these buildings going up all over the world are being put up by American contractors. China, India, Dubai…they bring over our big American firms. A handful of our engineers go over, hire the locals and viola’

Well, at least a few guys from America are making a few bucks. Trouble is, that money is not “trickling” down anywhere but to some guy’s bank account in the Cayman Islands.

And while our big American contractors are busy putting buildings up all over the world, nothing is being built here in America, unless it’s on the Vegas strip, or the new giant highway from Mexico.

Here we are, seven years after 9/11 and the only real American building left standing on the New York skyline is the Empire State.

I wonder if those elevators still shake around the 77th floor.

Bill Clinton once said, “We aren’t always going to be the big dog on the block and we’d better get used to it.” Of course, that big dog Bill Clinton sold China some American ports, rubbed the backs of the Sheikh rulers of Dubai and Kuwait, brokered uranium deals with Kazakhstan for a Ukraine billionaire friend, and would have ended up in Carnegie Hall Towers downtown Manhattan on our dime if he could have.

He’s a regular real-estate agent global supreme with cherries on top!

And President Bush---does he have to grovel so? The way he holds the King of Saudi’s hand, acting like a mere puppet to his beck and call? Hasn’t he been the President for eight years? Where’s OUR Iraq oil?

Do you see a pattern here? I mean, either our highest politicians are just pimps for the big dogs of the world, brokering deals for the rich and the Sheiks, or all those pictures taken by the Hubble are just fakes. Even though President Bush has kept us all from attack, sometimes I wonder--- at what price? What exactly goes on in those tents?

Christopher Hitchens (you remember---the God impugning atheist) wrote a piece called “Last Call, Bohemia” in Vanity Fair this month. While whole towns are being wiped out in the Midwest, Christopher Hitchens is upset about his palatable Greenwich Village being overtaken by boring corporate buildings.

I was quite touched.

Where, he laments, will the future great intellectual minds of our times ferment once the Village is gone?

Good God.

I guess I could feel sorry for Christopher Higgiens---I mean, he has a point. Wiping out the “artist” colony which for so many years produced major literature giants filled with leftist hotbeds of coercive Marxist thoughts must feel to him much like an army of polar bears taking up camp in London and eating the locals. It’s a great “cultural” loss. A “species” of American intellectual never to be replaced, to Chris, is a loss to the world; forget the middle class of America.

But just because the middle class of America doesn’t really matter to the rich elite powerbrokers of the world as a “species,” doesn’t mean that our values are any less important to the world than the likes of rich Harvard kids looking for a place to contemplate their own “specialness.”

And Christopher doesn’t much like skyscrapers---after all, they were banned in Paris for a long time. It’s not cool to the “elite” to build tall buildings anymore ---they use too much energy. Better to say that than to admit as Clinton says with glee—“we are not the big dogs” anymore.

The way things are going, I wouldn’t doubt if someday a monolithic Mosque will be built right across from the White House.

That will never happen you say? Well, did you ever think we’d have a President someday named Obama?

At least we still have Vegas. Hopefully, the Saudi’s let us keep it.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sharks in the Mississippi

Nobody Cares---While the entire Midwestern section of the United States goes under sharks beware.

Don't underestimate the anger of the average Joe American who feels he has been forgotten.

Here we see a local farmer in Iowa, who has just about had enough of the fact that he is going to lose his farm, his house, his pigs, his horses, his cows, all due to the fact that he couldn't afford flood insurance.

On top of that, his whole town is gone forever.

He is either taking care of the sharks hanging around his house ready to buy up anything that they can get at a cheap price, or he has decided Sea World might need a good shark trainer.

I'm kidding. This guy pets sharks for fun...really.

So, what do you think? Is he married? Can you say "AIG?"


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Bunker Your Hills

Nobody Knows: Today is Bunker Hill Day. In fact…right now as I look out at a full moon, it’s almost over. Not many people really care in this day and age about the Battle of Bunker Hill…but we should.

We should, because it was on June 17, 1775, that America found out it could actually stand up to a bunch of elite tyrants---tyrants who seemed insurmountable.

The British were already in Boston when the people got wind of the fact that General Thomas Gage, the British Commander, was going to take the hills around the Boston harbor.

On the night of June 16, 1775, a force of about 1200 men, under the command of Col. William Prescott took ready on Breed Hill, as it was then called. The next morning, Gage sent about 3,000 men under the orders of William Howe to take the hill. Due to lack of ammunition, Prescott ordered:

“Don’t shoot, until you see the whites of their eyes!”

Up the hill the British went, but didn’t get far to their surprise. A second assault was commanded…again---beaten back.

During this time the poor village of Charlestown upon Howe’s orders was being completely destroyed by cannons.

On the third try, the British succeeded to take the hill, only because our men ran out of ammunition. The British lost 1,054 men, the Americans lost 430. A ragtag team of our minute men would have defeated the well trained British army but for lack of ammunition.

And that’s me, standing on Bunker Hill last year. I begged a tourist to take my picture because about that time, I was totally exhausted and needed an excuse to rest.

That morning, I had taken a forty-five minute subway ride from Braintree, done the tour of the Freedom Trail, and at 3 o’clock in the afternoon, realized that across the harbor was the Bunker Hill Monument and the sun was going to set at five.

Now---if you are in south Boston, that monument across the river doesn’t exactly look like it’s an easy trot. I certainly didn’t have money for a cab. I ask a man how long it would take to walk to it and he laughed.

“I suggest you just take a picture and say you were there.”

But to not to go to Bunker Hill was not an option. I knew I might never again get this close in my lifetime…so I ran.

There I went, running with all my forty-pound bags, up one side of the river, over the bridge, through the hilly neighborhoods, up more hills, until I finally arrived around 4pm.

I was amazed that I had made it. I was even more amazed when I found out you could take the steps to the top of the monument. The last thing I wanted to do at that point was drag my tired body up a narrow staircase, it was starting to get dark. But once again….to not do it was NOT an option.

Why? Because I had my own Bunker Hill to conquer---a blackness called “depression.”

In our society, depression is commonly known as a “mental illness.” But I beg to differ. With that definition we would have to say that Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, Samuel Becket, Marlon Brando, Barbara Bush, Truman Capote, Drew Carey, Jim Carrey, Dick Clark, Ty Cobb, Rodney Dangerfield, Sheryl Crow, Ellen DeGeneres, Harrison Ford, July Garland, Ernest Hemingway, Audrey Hepburn, Anthony Hopkins, Billy Joel, Elton John, Claude Monet, Marilynn Monroe, Alanis Morissette, Laurence Olivier, Dolly Parton, General George S. Patton, Cole Porter, Bonnie Raitt, Yves Saint Laurent, Rod Steiger, Spencer Tracy, Kurt Vonnegut, Mike Wallace, Tennessee Williams, Franz Kafka, Danny Kaye, John Lennon, Jack London, Tom Wolfe, Natalie Wood, and Boris Yelstin…were all mentally ill.

All of them by definition…not fit for prime time. Na-da. Nuts. Wacko. Idiots. Not to be trusted or listened to, as opposed to people who don’t suffer from depression like Alec Baldwin, Michael Moore, Nancy Pelosi and Paris Hilton.

Onto that list I would include many others who don’t profess to suffer, but obviously do to some extent. Men like Glenn Beck, and Stephen King.

This “black dog” as Winston Churchill called his moments of despair, usually comes and goes, and I can tell you, when it comes, you better bunker your hills boys, man the battle stations, and don’t shoot till you see the whites of their eyes, because it’s a major battle not to succumb to your own thoughts.

Some, like Hemingway and Monroe, did not survive their battles.

When I read the words not too long ago, written by John Quincy Adams: “My whole life has been a succession of disappointments. I can scarcely recollect a single instance of success to anything that I have ever undertook.” I instantly recognized an exact replication of my own thoughts.
And why not? My great-great grandmother Francis Adams was a descendant of that family. It’s as if JQA’s gloomy disposition was embedded in my very DNA.

I wish I could tell you that the fact that this “mental” illness was handed down from the likeness of such great men makes me feel better, (It runs throughout the bloodline) but the truth is, when in these states of attack, like JQA once said, “to lie down and die is a privilege denied.”

Oh…he was so right.

But, here’s the good news. The Battle of Bunker Hill teaches us that you can fight against great odds, and survive.

Like my ancestors before me, I have bravely fought every horrible battle, without the support of alcohol, or drug addiction, or promiscuous sex…and have survived the bunkers of the deepest hells. No enemy was more fierce than myself.

Why am I telling you about this? Why compare Bunker Hill with my own “mental” illness?

Because we all have our Bunker Hills; some just have more than others. Battles of war, battles of the mind…it’s a matter of survival.

To quote the enclycolpia Britannica: “Bunker Hill, taught the American colonists in 1775 that the odds against them in the enterprise in which they embarked were not so overwhelming as to deny them all prospect of ultimate success.”

Think about that. Don’t most of us feel that way now? That the odds against the America we all know and love seem overwhelming?

Abigail Adams once wrote to John Adams during those trying times--- “I feel anxious for the fate of our monarchy or democracy, or whatever is to take place. I soon get lost in a labyrinth of perplexities; but, whatever occurs, may justice and righteousness be the stability of our times, and order arise out of confusion. Great difficulties may be surmounted by patience and perseverance.”

What a gal she was, huh? Justice, righteousness, order, perseverance: words that should be repeated constantly to every child.

Today was Bunker Hill day, 2008. It was also my birthday. I was also born by some cosmic coincident on June 17th, 1952. Knowing myself, it's a perfect fit.

Today, I bought a lottery ticket, had two cupcakes that I shouldn’t have had, and thought about the brave men who died on Bunker Hill so long ago. I thought about the soldiers now fighting in Iraq, some of them fighting their own Bunker Hills of depression.

But if history tells us anything, maybe it’s that if we just Bunker our Hills, and hold on like Abigail said…who knows what miracles can happen?
In fact, at this point in our history, I don't think there is any other option, do you?


Monday, June 16, 2008


Nobody's Perfect: Even though these lovely girls were on route to Chicago from Saudi Arabia to visit their children in Michigan..they protested, due to religious beliefs, having to go through the various x-ray machines at Dulles, Airport.

In fact, they refused on principle of religious rights.

So, after a few moments a call was made and the Supreme Court instantly corrected this horrible injustice by permanently hiring Muslim men to take all Muslim women's pictures before entering the country.

We all know just how hard all our courts are working to protect us all, nevertheless...the second one from the right, was found last night getting married to his boyfriend in San Francisco.

Everyone expressed how lovely he looked in his pretty bridal gown.

And yes, I made this all up--- but what do you think this picture is about? I mean, where's aunt Matilda?

I hate to say this, but those Muslims all look alike.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Roots of a Frisbee on Father's Day

Nobody’s Opinion: I had one of the most spectacular days of my life, on Father’s
Day---and I am a mother.

My son Brett had called and asked my husband (his step-dad) and me to go play some disc-golf on Saturday, in honor of Father’s Day. We had planned to play golf, but my son decided that so many people would be on the golf course, that all we’d be doing is waiting around.

None of us are great “waiters.” The last time we played golf the people behind us kept driving their golf balls over our heads, and that just about started World War II and a half. You don’t try to hit old soldiers with golf balls…

Not a good idea.

So, we all agreed. Disc-golf would have less of a “waiting” crowd, and therefore we probably would all live.

This was a first. I had no idea what a “disc-golf” course was. I was excited just to get to see my son. He was finally out in the world making his life, and that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

But still…it’s a mother thing---give me a break.

As we were driving out to a local Missouri park in his first brand new car that he worked so hard to buy for himself, I remembered all the times he had ran out of the door when he was in his teens saying, “We’re going to play disc-golf mom…I’ll be back.” And off he would run with a gang of buddies. I would imagine these teenage boys running around this little sort of putt-putt field, throwing their little Frisbees into some kind of tree.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

As my son walked up to the first “tee-off” and told me to look for the first “net,” I knew that this was not going to be a day at fun-co land. The sign said, Par-4…890 yards.

Okay…this is real.

I also knew, after watching my son take off his shirt, a Kodak moment was coming. He took a running jump, and I watched his Frisbee fly as far as a regular golf ball. Good God…who thought this up?

The last time I saw a Frisbee thrown was in the sixties, when guys would get stoned at the park and flip it about ten feet to impress the girls. (It never impressed anyone but the local stray mutts, but we girls didn’t have the heart to tell them.)

This was more like discuss throwing at the 3046 Olympics! If we judge our country by the current Frisbee throwing capabilities of the younger generation, we should make it to Mars with no trouble at all. We’ll just have them all throw the modules.

No way was I was going to go eighteen holes with two men---one a personal trainer (my son) and the other an x-navy seal. I got a ‘9’ on the first hole. My son got a birdie.

“Okay, you guys need a spotter?”

Anyway, there wasn’t a soul but us on this beautiful- trees in full bloom-day. Imagine having a private golf course all to yourself—sweet.

As I watched my son, in the prime of his young life, so strong, so smart, so healthy…he looked like a young Greek God. I realized I was finally witnessing my own father’s roots. Right in front of my eyes was the final product of three good men: my father, my brother, and my husband. (Okay, I take some credit too, but not on Father’s Day.)

You see, my first husband left my son and me when my son was only one---so my dad took over.

And my dad couldn’t have been more thrilled with his new buddy. Every Saturday, my dad and his little “buddy” would be out on the golf course to play eighteen. My son, at five, got so good at golf, that my dad had him scoring in the low eighties for eighteen holes. I’m sure, had my dad not come down with a cancerous brain tumor at sixty-three, my son would have been on the tour with Tiger by now.

But anyway---life goes on.

After our great family outing, (Brett finished 4 under par) while sitting at Dairy Queen, my son announced that he had a new goal---get a job as a personal trainer at a golf course. (Like his grandfather he wanted to someday be a pro.) Then I remembered that it was my second husband who had bought my son his first work-out center when he was sixteen.

The roots of two strong men had finally combined to make this wonderful son. My son, took the memories and lessons from my dad, and the lessons and love from his step-dad, and knew exactly what to do with them.

Men are amazing.

Now--- I must tell you right now. My father and I were not close. But I do remember one day that breaks my heart whenever I think about it.

I wanted to plant a few small rose plants in the back yard one spring, but my dad went out and bought me three big rose bushes. When he was planting them, I kept saying, “Dad, don’t you think those holes are big enough…you’ve been out here for so long, it’s so hot, you can quit---do they have to be so deep?”

And he said, “No…you’ve got to make the holes very deep and big, so that the roots will go down and really take hold. I need to go deeper.” It took him a good two hours.

You could have buried a fully loaded golf bag in each hole.

He knew what he was doing—he couldn’t tell me he loved me, he was showing me. He knew how big those bushes would grow. I didn’t…I had no idea.

He planted those bushes over thirty years ago. And every year I have thousands of beautiful pink roses, on both sides of the fence. I’ve never seen such a magnificent display of roses anywhere…ever. And every year on Father’s Day, I look at that gorgeous display of buds, and really feel his love even though he never said “I love you.”

I never thought that my own father cared much for me. But, finally, this weekend, I saw just how much he did; my son made that all so clear...and that thought made me feel as high as a Frisbee thrown by the arms of the men that I love.

Now, if I could just get my son to play tennis….