Thursday, July 30, 2009

Lessons Learned - Listen To Your Wife's "Hateration"

I learned my lesson well.

Yesterday my family started our vacation journey with a flight down to Florida. I decided that I was going to travel on "serious vacation mode". I chose to not bring any casual shoes. I only had a pair of sneakers for walking and another pair of sneakers for my morning jog. I took the black rubber sole shoes out of my bag and left them in the closet.

I had on a sports jersey and some shorts and sneakers for traveling.

As soon as my wife saw me she asked "What do you have on? You look like you are about to cut the back yard.".

I then asked her "We are getting on an airplane. Who do I need to impress?"

She said "You are presenting yourself in public to ME".

We get to the airport and attempt to check in at the Airtran automatic check-in station. The machine says "Please See A Ticket Counter Agent".
They had not assigned us any seats because there were no seats that were grouped together. We'd have to go to the gate for our seat assignment.

My wife went to the gate agent to obtain our seats. She took our receipts and told us she would call us up later. My wife and son then went to get some food.

Our names were called and I went up to the counter. The lady then saw what I had on and then shook her head. She then informed me that she had us all booked in a FIRST CLASS UPGRADE but.........I was not allowed to wear sneakers and a t-shirt in FIRST CLASS!!! She would have to move me alone back to coach.

By that time my wife was standing behind me listening to this. This is all that I needed. Ammunition for my wife to say "I told you so".

My goal of having at least 3 free "Vodka and Cranberry Juice" drinks had faded away right before my eyes.

Thankfully the rest of the plane was jam packed solid. The lady let me board in first class.

The gate agent stated as she scanned my ticket "You had better listen to the woman the next time".

Interestingly enough there was another guy in first class with a sports cap, shorts and sneakers on even though he had a shirt with a collar on.

I have learned my lesson about dressing appropriately to be ready for being promoted upward in social class.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I Wanted To Be A Big Time CEO, Instead My Life Turned Out Where I Had To Settle For My Face On A Truck

Wanted To Be A Big Time CEO, Instead My Life Turned Out Where I Had To Settle For My Face On A Truck

Here's the setup: I am driving up the interstate and then I see this van pull onto the interstate from the on-ramp.

I look and I see this guy's face on the side of the truck.

I think to myself "I bet you everything that this guys is also driving this truck."
I pulled up beside him and, sure enough it was him.

I told you before that I need to have a hidden camera where I can take pictures of people without them getting mad and trying to "kick my azz". Thus I had to settle for just the pictures of his truck.r>

He also had a few stickers of some locksmith association. I bet that this guy is so focused on his job that he has been the president of the "National Professional Locksmith's Association" for the past 3 terms. (I just made that name up)

I am not mad at the guy.
I would take 10 of these guys that are afflicted with a bunch of self-agrandizement than I would 10 street thugs who are breaking out the locks from steering columns before they steal your car.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

UK Government Health Care Sends Cancer Patients To Private Entities

Cancer patients will be paid to go private in yet another Labour climbdown

As much as some American progressives sell us upon the wonders of "Multiple Tax Payer Paid Health Care" I always find it interesting how things are going in Canada and the UK - their normal references.

A few years ago judges in Canada ruled that people in the country are allowed to seek private health care, outside of the government system.

Now we see that the authorities in the UK - where private citizens are paid money from the government for their transporation costs to the hospital - have now decided that cancer patients are able to seek private care.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Who The Hell Eats Kraft Seven Seas - Green Goddess Dressing?

I have to admit an obsession of mine. When ever I travel I try to go to a local grocery store and purchase fruit to eat for the night rather than eating some fattening meal at a local restaurant. I also check for the availability of two items that I used to have access to when I was growing up in Philadelphia:

  • Herr's Barbque Potato Chips
  • Kraft Seven Seas CREAMY Italian Dressing

Several years ago Kraft either purchased the "Seven Seas" company or consolidated the brand underneath their own brand. Either way my favorite bottled dressing got harder to come by, especially after I moved down South.

Here is how the engagement goes - first I get my fruits. Then the salad dressing isle is usually the next isle or the isle after. Either they don't sell the "Seven Seas" brand at all OR I see a bottle that looks deceivingly like the Creamy Italian style dressing. When I get up close - 9 times out of 10 in the South - it is this "Green Goddess" style and not the Creamy Italian.

When I do find the Creamy Italian - I usually purchase 3 bottles and put them in my suitcase for the flight home.

I have NEVER gone to someone's house and they had "Green Goddess" dressing as a selection.

Wait a minute! Amazon now sells the Creamy Italian version in a 6 pack. Problem might be solved.

Hugo Chavez Causes The Intellectual Elites To Depart Venezuela

The Bolivarian Brain Drain:
Hugo Chavez and his allies are tightening their grips, forcing the intelligentsia to leave in droves

For just a moment, in the early days of his presidency, Venezuela's Hugo Chávez looked almost like a healer. "Let's ask for God's help to accept our differences and come together in dialogue," he famously implored his conflicted compatriots in 2002. Instead what Venezuelans got was an avenger. The government is seizing privately owned companies and farms. Labor unions have been crushed. Political opponents are routinely harassed or else prosecuted by chavista controlled courts. And now after a decade of the so-called Bolivarian revolution, tens of thousands of disillusioned Venezuelan professionals have had enough. Artists, lawyers, physicians, managers and engineers are leaving the country by droves, while those already abroad are scrapping plans to return. The wealthiest among them are buying condos in Miami and Panama City. Cashiered oil engineers are working rigs in the North Sea and sifting the tar sands of western Canada. Those of European descent have applied for passports from their native lands. Academic scholarships are lifeboats. An estimated million Venezuelans have moved abroad in the decade since Chávez took power.

This exodus is splitting families and interrupting careers, but also sabotaging the country's future. Just as nations across the developing world are managing to lure their scattered expatriates back home to fuel recovering economies and join vibrant democracies, the outrush of Venezuelan brainpower is gutting universities and thinktanks, crippling industries and hastening the economic disarray that threatens to destroy one of the richest countries in the hemisphere. Forget minerals, oil and natural gas; the biggest export of the Bolivarian revolution is talent.

The Bolivarian diaspora is a reversal of fortune on a massive scale. Through most of the last century, Venezuela was a haven for immigrants fleeing Old World repression and intolerance. Refugees from totalitarianism and religious intolerance in Spain, Italy and Germany and Eastern Europe flocked to this country nestled between the Caribbean and the Andean cordillera and helped forge one of the most vibrant societies in the New World. Like most developing nations, the country was split between the burgeoning poor and an encastled elite. But in the 1970s and 1980s, Venezuelans were the envy of Latin America. Oil rich, educated, with a solid democratic tradition, they lived a tier above the chronically unstable societies in the region. "We had a relatively rich country that offered opportunities, with no insecurity. No one thought about leaving," says Diego Arria, a former Venezuelan ambassador to the United Nations, who lives in New York. "Now we have rampant crime, a repressive political system that borders on apartheid, and reverse migration. Venezuela is now a country of emigrants."