Monday, January 2, 2012


What in the Sam Hill is that?

Oh... Sorry.


On my commute to work... through the urban sprawl outside Brew City... I see A LOT of billboards. Generally speaking, billboards bug me. I feel as though I'm constantly bombarded with someone else's opinions on what I should wear on my wrist... or what car I should be seen in... or what lawyer I should hire should I ever had need to sue my neighbor. The worst assault, though, wrought by billboards is the fact the people behind them aren't putting any effort into the overall design/aesthetics. Most are downright embarrassments to the printed art form. And if you're going to insist on crashing in on my shopping sprees, you could have the decency to come at me in style.

Still, some billboard messages are of the political persuasion. You know, the kind designed to sway our leanings in one direction or another. These, despite the fact they are often the least visually appealing of them all, are somewhat entertaining. I found the one suggesting Obama was the political heir apparent to the Bush Administration encouraging. Of course, I was prematurely giving my fellow taxpayers credit for attacking our bipartisan government for the sickness they've spread throughout Washington, DC. In reality, some group wanted me to vote for career Republicans in Independent's clothing. But at least we were using the giant posters for politics... rather than consumption. I don't think we, as a nation, need any more encouragement to consume. But truly engaging in our Democratic system is something we've been sleeping on since Slick Willie lulled us to sleep with laws that made it easier to purchase homes (despite the fact he required we trade in our entire working class). Wow.

Last week, I noticed a billboard which read...


The ad itself is sponsored by some organization which is working as a network for leeches looking to take advantage of the misfortunes of USAmericans who've found themselves fiscally unable to repair their homes. On the surface, it seems like the right thing to do. I mean, what could be wiser than dumping an investment once you realize you can't afford the upkeep? Well... according to my parents... one should never bind oneself to an investment of which you can't afford the upkeep. Thank God for my parents. There were lots of little gems like that one they imparted with us (in our childhood). I'm uncertain as to what the motivation was. Maybe they were buried in debt and didn't want the same for their children, but I took the advice to heart.

Moving on (or this could very easily morph into a gush over my folks blog)...

As the bus drove past this sign, the overall message communicated in the sentiments thereon began to vex my soul. If this is what we do to the place we share with our parents, siblings, spouses and children, is everything or everyone else also subject to the philosophy?

1) If your school isn't working for you, drop out. Education is over-rated anyway. Right? I mean, who needs to be well-rounded? Next thing you know, we'll be cutting literature, art, music and phys ed classes from the school curriculum. Oops!

2) If your job isn't working for you, quit and give up on working. The next job will likely rub you the wrong way too. Instead, simply collect unemployment indefinitely.

3) If you manage/supervise personnel, and they aren't performing to your every expectation, don't retrain them. Don't sit them down and talk through their performance versus your expectations... Fire them all.

4) If your chosen transportation doesn't meet your every desire or provide the proper level of social status, trade it in for another you can't afford. What does it matter? If you're already doing entry two, it's coming from someone else's pocket anyway.

5) If your significant other suffers from the human condition, cut the ties that bind and jump into another relationship. Repeat often and you won't have to learn how to live with others or give them the opportunities to learn to deal with you. Let's all avoid the chance to develop the skills necessary to live in a world with people who don't think, feel, and express exactly as we do. Facebook instead! I just learned (from a news source) two of the most common status updates on Facebook are "It's complicated" and "It's over". Really?!

6) In fact, don't commit to anything at all. Why should you? In the end, it all proves to be imperfect... which will only remind you of your failings. If you admit you aren't perfect, you may feel the need to do something about your unsavory traits. Right?

7) Don't strive for anything... not even mediocrity. You may fail to achieve. This could lead to you examining why you failed, which only leads to the temptation to develop the tenacity to be successful the next time around.


We barely communicate as it is. Oh, yeah. 'Cause to communicate you must be social. That's more work on self. It's a never ending story of avoiding responsibility.

Is that the world in which we want to live? Do we toss problems into the wind rather than going through the process of examining, considering, deciding, preparing, and repairing if/when possible? Gosh... I hope not. It certainly isn't the pledge we sing on New Year's Eve...

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet
For auld lang syne!

We twa hae run about the braes,
And pu'd the gowans fine,
But we've wander'd mony a weary fit
Sin auld lang syne.

We twa hae paidl't in the burn
Frae morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid hae roar'd
Sin auld lang syne.

And there's a hand, my trusty fiere,
And gie's a hand o' thine,
And we'll tak a right guid willie-waught
For auld lang syne!

And surely ye'll be your pint' stowp,
And surely I'll be mine,
And we'll tak a cup o' kindness yet
For auld lang syne!"


"Should old acquaintances be forgotten,
And never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintances be forgotten,
And days of long ago !

For old long ago, my dear
For old long ago,
We will take a cup of kindness yet
For old long ago.

We two have run about the hillsides
And pulled the daisies fine,
But we have wandered many a weary foot
For old long ago.

We two have paddled (waded) in the stream
From noon until dinner time,
But seas between us broad have roared
Since old long ago.

And there is a hand, my trusty friend,
And give us a hand of yours,
And we will take a goodwill draught (of ale)
For old long ago!

And surely you will pay for your pint,
And surely I will pay for mine!
And we will take a cup of kindness yet
For old long ago!"
- Robert Burnes (Auld Lang Syne)

Sleep on it!

Happy 2012!!


- @