Yo Gabba Gabba

8 03 2010

I love my daughter, I really do. She is almost 3 and is wonderful. I know kids will laugh at the silliest things, and find entertainment in places that us adults would not find humor in. So as a disclaimer, I would like to say that the following is the opinion of a grown man, and not necessarily the views, thoughts, and/or opinions of kids worldwide. So with that being said, I was forced to watch Yo Gabba Gabba recently…

This is DJ Lance Rock. At first glance, he looks like FroZone from “The Incredibles”. This is the DJ/MC/Ringmaster for the world of Yo Gabba Gabba. If you have never seen Yo Gabba Gabba, it looks like a senior project from the stoners/acid trippers from any college in America. The thing is, kids LOVE this show! I am still trying to figure out why. Here is a clip of one of the most popular songs from the show, entitled “There’s A Party In My Tummy”. No, I am not making this up:

I once had a party in my tummy. I remember it like it was yesterday (10/15/01). I ingested my usual from Taco Hell: a Nachos Bell Grande, extra meat & extra sour cream, 2 chicken soft taco supremes with no tomatoes, and large Pepsi. I had eaten this meal many times. On this particular day, I had not eaten anything. So an hour after devouring my food, it was on like a pot of the finest collard greens slow cooked with turkey necks. I was running for the toilet, not the border, and had it coming out of every orifice imaginable. Oh, did I mention I was in the worst pain I had ever had in my life? So it was during my visit to the emergency room that I learned I had food poisoning. Ever since then, no Taco Hell for me. But had I known that I could have written a song about it and made it to a kids show, I would have had pen & paper in hand, strumming a guitar, and doing my best Tracy Chapman impersonation.

 

Back to Yo Gabba Gabba, they dance and sing catchy songs, and even have celebrity guests, like Jack Black, Sugarland, Biz Markie, and Amy Sedaris, seen here:

Of course, inventive people on youtube have come up with spoofs. This one is a favorite of mine, set to Pop Lock & Drop It:

Whatever happened to the days of Bugs Bunny? A while back, I told a boy with a mohawk he looked like Foghorn Leghorn. He asked me who Foghorn Leghorn was. Man did I feel old and sad. G.I. Joe, Transformers, Voltron, Pinwheel, Today’s Special were great shows. They were not shows that looked like an acid trip gone bad (cue the sarcasm)…

The Chik Fil A Cow, Morpheus with a Soul Glo do, and, well, Pee Wee Herman discussing dating advice. Yup, gotta love kids shows…

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Poison Salsa & Liquored Moms, Oh My!!!

26 02 2010

Dateline: Johnson County, Kansas. Yini De La Torre plead guilty to one federal count of conspiracy to tamper with a consumer product. According to court documents, De La Torre admitted to adding Methomyl to salsa. Methomyl is a pesticide that is highly toxic to humans, and is used to protect plants from ticks and spiders. The side effects on humans are numerous, and a person must posses a special handling license to even get the stuff. But wait, the story only gets better: She did it because her husband told her to do it, as payback for him being fired at another one of the restaurants. Apparently, the husband also suspected the owner of stealing his car. Brilliant these two are. Now they are both facing federal time, and the restaurant lost about $250K in a three month span. But wait, it gets worse: De La Torre is the niece of the restaurant owner. As they say, Blood In, Blood Out.

Dateline: Memphis, TN: If it is one thing I learned years ago, alcohol + weapons = trouble. Toni Price has been charged with aggravated assault & carrying a weapon onto school property. She was upset that a student spat on her daughter. So what does every good parent do when their child is having another student spit on their children? They confront the other parents, but not without drinking a delicious and smooth Colt 45 (It has to be a 40 oz. though). Of course, you cannot confront anyone while buzzing on Billy Dee Williams favorite liquor without carrying your sword hidden inside of a cane, a la Nino Brown from “New Jack City.”

This story hits close to home because my sister & I attended Riverview Elementary until the end of my 5th grade year. The school was always safe, and we feared Mr. Polk’s “Board of Education.” I cannot remember any alcohol fueled moms with revenge on the brain and a shank in the cane coming to the school. I guess that was a different time then. Besides, we were all about an eye for an eye. We would get mad and maybe fight, but we just hurled insults at each other first, and one person would always use either “Yo Momma” or “African Booty Scratcher”. Don’t ask…





The Great Facebook Fast of 2010

17 02 2010

Like over 400 million people worldwide, I have a Facebook page. I have had it for a while and have seen it grow from a small diversion after MySpace, to the site where seemingly everyone and their mom has a page. The people at Facebook are smart, because they constantly do things to keep us hooked. Sadly, some people are hooked, and it is sad to admit that I am one of those people…

Facebook has its benefits. The most common one is catching up with old friends from daycare through college. It is useful to keep in touch with friends in the military, family that live far away from you, and former co-workers that you were cool with.

For me, this was wonderful. I would run across so many people and re-connect that it seemed like after the initial catch-up, it was almost like we never lost touch. Some of this was good, others, not so much.

I would get so excited whenever I would see a new friend request. Who wants me to be their friend today? Hey, it’s the guy from high school that played football. He has really let himself go, but he was cool and always high…Confirm!!! Look, it was the crazy chick that I dated briefly but I remembered that she stole a pair of my boxers and left psycho messages on my car…IGNORE!!!

Eventually, my world was taken over by blue and red boxes. Someone left me a crazy comment about my status, yay! 10 people like the link I put up, cool! Someone tagged pics of skinny me from junior high/high school, aww! Look at who tagged this friend passed out drunk with shaving cream and writing all over his face, laugh!

Then we have the apps. I was asking for help to off some Gambino mob boss. I was sending trees and sheep for other people’s farms. I was sending bribe money to pay off health inspectors so that my restaurant didn’t get shut down. I was joining fan pages, from God to “Get It Girl”. I was cool because my name started with either A,B,C,F,J,M,P,Q, or Z. I joined different “Causes” to show that I cared. I remembered when we had to blow on our video games to make them work. It started to become too much.

If at least two of the following apply to you, you probably have a Facebook Addiction:

1. If you start and end your day with checking Facebook.

2. If you set your alarm clock to go off when your crops are fully grown or it is time to feed your fish.

3. If you find yourself chatting with ex’s in an inappropiate manner and they morph into “jumpoff” status.

4. If you put a status and/or link more than 3 times a day.

5. If you comment on more than 10 of your friends’ pages a day.

6. If you put up inappropiate status messages up.

7. If you do not use Facebook for business purposes and have more than 1,000 people.

8. If you are on Facebook at work, home, car, church, or anywhere else.

I am giving up two things for Lent, pork and Facebook. Pork is gonna be harder for me because the pig is such a succulent beast. My mouth waters at the thought of bacon, ham, pork chops, BBQ shoulder, etc. But I must, and I can, because the Bible teaches us that

“…we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” Romans 8:37

So for 40 days, I guess the grapes, mob bosses, pots of beef stew, blue and red boxes, killer pirhana, crackheads, blessings, smiley faces, new shoes, parking meters, invites to concerts, etc will just have to wait. Of course, Facebook will change again, people will complain, groups will be started about hating the new changes, and life will go on…





Worst Interview Ever

16 02 2010

I was having a conversation the other day about an interview she conducted at her job. She was describing how truly difficult the interview was. The person she was interviewing had a very impressive resume and was highly qualified, but the interview just went horribly wrong. The applicant was nervous, which is to be expected. Then he hurled, passed out, and had to leave in an ambulance. I started thinking back to one interview that I conducted about 6 years ago…

Me: So tell me a little bit about yourself.

Applicant: Wat u wanna know?

Me (thinking: Did he just say what I thought he just said?): Well let us start by telling me why you feel like you are the best candidate for the job?

Applicant: I be a people person. All about people and s**t. Folks be trippin’ me out, and I can sell them stuff. I know bout selling.

Me (thinking: Gee, I wonder what he does sell): Well from your previous work history, you have a background in sales and you have stability. Tell me about your last job. What were some of the things that you enjoyed about your job?

Applicant: Mane, y u gotta be askin me bout that?

Me (thinking: well he did used to be a manager at Journeys): Well let’s do this. Tell me one thing about your last job that you liked. You worked there for 3 years, so there was something that you liked, right?

Applicant: Yeah it was cool. The discount was straight, so I was hookin errbody up. A new pare of J’s on my feet n I was sellin dem thangs. Even won a sales contest.

Me (thinking: Well he won’t get hired but I wanna see how deep the rabbit hole goes): So you are competitive?

Applicant: Yeah I be all bout my paper. I got babies to feed, tracks to lay, and tats to add!

Me (thinking: Two more questions then go. Need to get lunch special at Lucky Dragon): Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Applicant: ON TOP OF THE M****R F*****G WORLD MY N***A!

Me (thinking: No one is gonna believe this): How are you gonna get there?

Applicant: On dis fie rocket that is blastin’ off once I get my deal. Records, flippin’ houses, and ITT Tech.

Me (thinking: Those 3 do not go together, do they?): Well that wraps it up. I will make my hiring decision soon. I must also inform you that part of the application process is that, if a job offer is extended, it will be pending until a background check is performed. Also, a pre-employment drug screen is required. Do you have any questions?

Applicant: Naw I’m good. After they fired me from Journeys, I bought me as much weed as I could & so after those few pounds, I should be aight.

Me (thinking: I need to process all of this, but at least his purple gators match the suit): We will be in touch. Nice meeting you.

Applicant: Stay up mane, you doin’ yo thang like Calvin & s**t. Let me borrow yo phone, my new baby mama got my car & she need to pick me up. I left my Cricket in there too…





The Art Of War

16 02 2010

One of my favorite all-time books is “The Art Of War” by Sun Tzu. This book was written over 2400 years ago by the Chinese general and has been cited by some of the most famous people in history. Generals, kings, business leaders, coaches throughout sports, potentates, and strippers have quoted from the book’s passages. Lately I have found myself referring to all kinds of past lessons & readings in my daily life, and ever since I read this book for the first time about 13 years ago, there are still quotes that stick with me.

The first quote that I can think of is:

“The clever combatant imposes his will on the enemy, but does not allow the enemy’s will to be imposed on him.”

Let me be clear. My first instinct is to never initiate conflict. Usually I try to rely on comedy first (or my charm, good looks, and baby soft skin). But in a situation in which you are faced with “dog eat dog”, this quote should come to mind.

For example, we have all been to the mall. In every mall that I have ever been to for the past 16 years, there is the lady at the kiosk in the middle of the mall pushing beauty supplies. Usually it is some sort of fruit smelling lotion, and whenever someone walks by, she is the first to ask “Here, free samples. Sir, ma’am, please try my product. Let me take a few minutes of your time.” They are semi-aggressive and almost rude at times, but all they need is one person. Once they get that person to allow the sales lady to squirt some of her fine product onto their hands, game on.

In sales, the law of averages usually would dictate that you ask everyone to buy your product, but you get responses out of a few. The thing is that you ask everyone. So this sales lady in the mall has asked everyone, and now she has a sucker potential client. As her client is now rubbing the lotion into her hands, the sales lady is telling her how her lotion is made of silk, lavender, ginseng, opium, zigzags, or whatever else she can say to make it sound soooooo luxurious. She is telling her that the lotion is supple yet subtle, simple yet refined, and giving the client a feeling of “Yes, my hands do feel rejuvenated.” The sales lady goes, “Yes that is the lavender reacting with the opium, revitalizing your skin and energizing your pores.” So the trap has been set, and now the sales lady can offer other related products and close the sale, $100 richer for 5 minutes of bull. Now the client did suggest before handing over her $100 that she usually buys the grocery store brand, but the sales lady answered back “Do your hands feel this way after you put on the grocery store brand?” She just imposed her will, and she made a nice little profit, seeing as though said purchased items cost the sales lady $6.

“Hold out baits to entice the enemy. Feign disorder, and crush him.”

Many battles throughout history have used this quote and probably have never heard of “The Art Of War.” The Trojan Horse. The Battle of Thermopylae (think of the movie 300). Shaka Zulu & his battles against neighboring tribes. 50 Cent vs. Ja Rule. Hold out bait, cause chaos, game over.

I have no idea why I am thinking about this, but remember the scene on “The Five Heartbeats” when JT & Duck got into a fight onstage and started rolling around while everyone else was singing? First of all, the rest of the group just kept singing like everything was ok. They jumped over them and just went about their business, while the audience was in shock. Well the next show, they decided to “hook the audience” even more by pretending to fight. They tore their outfits off to reveal shiny gold ones, which I am sure were stylish back then. They broke out in song and everyone was happy…until Eddie got high later on and had to be replaced by Flash Thompson…

“Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance.”

This is so true. Luke Skywalker defeated Jabba The Hut this way in “Return of the Jedi.” He presented himself to be weaker than the all-mighty Jabba. Well technically, Princess Leia choked Jabba out with the chain she was tied to but you get the drift.

So you see, “The Art of War” can be applied to virtually any situation. I would encourage you to read it. Who knows? If your mate is giving you grief, you might find yourself using:

“All men can see these tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved.”

Because if you find yourself working on a honey-do list & you cannot figure out why you are the one having to be on “make-up duty,” then clearly you were not prepared…






Before Work Altar Call

16 02 2010

This is what gets me through my work day…

Great and Wonderful Heavenly Father,

Lord I thank you for allowing those gathered here to wake up. For we know that we have now officially broken the snooze button on our alarm clocks. Some of us have fancy cell phones that we use for our alarm clocks and praises to those that invented them. Even though we try to hide those phones under our pillows when we cannot see the buttons in the dark, we thank you anyway. We also are eternally grateful that when our Android smartphone freezes and the alarm goes off at 3 instead of 5, or keeps beeping after we hit that soft key, that your goodness makes sure that our phone doesn’t break after we toss it against the wall in anger.

Father we thank you for the morning radio shows. We thank you for the traffic updates. It is comforting to know that the route to work is backed up because some fool ran out of gas and is clogging up three lanes. Lord only you can make a 1984 Ford Escort stretch out for three lanes. And while we are thanking you for morning radio, bless your name for the 10 minutes of music, 5 minutes of talking, 15 minutes of commercials, and repeat. Also thank you for the guidance of the morning DJ for playing the same 8 songs day in, day out, in the same exact time and order everyday, unless he/she is on vacation.

Lord when I do show up for work after being late, thank you for keeping my tongue silenced for the first 3 minutes. For I know that the boss will say something about me being late, even though I have already called and explained the reasons why. And when I do get to my desk, bless the nice person that stole the stapler off of my desk. I know that the supply closet is fully stocked with them for everyone’s use, but bless that thief. Also, apparently the same vandal has now taken the Post It notes and highlighters. We also thank you for making all staplers black, making it virtually impossible for performing a CSI type of investigation. God we would like to look on the bright side & see they didn’t take the picture frames off of the desk.

Father bless the people that hang out in the break room and always drinking Folgers. Lord it seems like Mr. Soandso always is drinking coffee out of the coffee mug with his cat’s picture on it. What makes it even worse is when Miss Thang comes in with her $5 cup of Starbucks coffee and sits down, when she could have bought a can of whipped cream and some milk to make her own $5 cup of coffee, all for the low price of $5 since the company provides the coffee. Thank you for the refrigerator that used to store the leftovers from last night’s dinner at Red Lobster. I pray that you provide protection for it, even though the styrofoam has my name on it in big bold letters. Please protect my cheddar bay biscuits.

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