Sunday, June 30, 2013

Egg Terrorists

R.a.n.t. of week 06/30/13
Believe it or not, there are some weeks I find nothing to complain about. Maybe that's not entirely true, let me correct myself. Believe it or not, there are some weeks I find nothing NEW to complain about. Idiot drivers, inconsiderate people, dumb things in life I can't control or egg terrorists. Wait, I've never complained about egg terrorists before. As this has never happened to me, I've never found a reason to. Fortunately, this HAS happened to a guest contributor, who shall now relate her experience. Did I say fortunate? Fortunate for me, less fortunate for her.

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There are many things in life I can tolerate. I usually can dodge any curve ball thrown. It’s during those unexpected moments I may find myself in that I usually can figure out my next moves. Even if I don’t, I can usually wiggle my way gracefully out of the situation. People can even hit me with their best shots anytime because I’ve learned through my experiences in life to toughen up. I’ve learned what people say to hurt me doesn’t really matter anyway so I can usually let their words go in one ear and out the other.

There is something, however, that really irks the daylights out of me. It is the curve ball thrown at me/my property in the form of an egg. An egg you wonder? Yes, an egg. I find it quite peculiar that there are people in this world that find it funny to say the least to plot, plan and finally to attack your windows with eggs. I call them the Egg Terrorists. I’m going to try to put myself in the mind of one. The attacker likely comes with a motive. During the day he scans the neighborhood looking for the best home to hit. The attackers mind set, I truly believe is first and foremost, to scare the life out of someone. When the egg terrorists attack they put their victim in shock. The victim of the egg attacker never knows until they see the yellow slimy substance of the egg dripping down from their windows. They ask, “Was it an owl, a rock, or Superman?” Personally I would take the later any time. The egg on the other hand that flew into your window was hurled there by a simple minded individual that likely has an egg for a brain. This fool wasted his money on something perfectly fine to eat, that could have been prepared in a variety of forms I may add. I can see that idiot now standing at the cash register…smirking and thinking… “I have the weapons in hand….hahahahahaha…” Looking to the left and the right with his squinty eyes, he glances, hoping nobody there knows that those eggs he just bought were not for an omelet the next morning but for his premeditated juvenile behavior…egg throwing! Placing them neatly in a carry out bag…I can see him glancing though each and every one of those eggs, hoping to find the best of the best to throw at the windows of his unsuspecting victims…Ahhh…he finds the one he saw during the day. Before throwing the egg, he examines it carefully. “Yes” he says to himself, “This is the one!”Lurking in the darkness, he finds the home with the largest windows in the neighborhood and makes his move. He slithers up on the grass like a cunning snake, peers into the window and gages his exact distance that will cause the most harm and mess to the window. Suddenly,…bam…boom…splash! The Egg Terrorist strikes again.

His mission is accomplished. The damage is done. The perfectly good egg was hurled into space like a satellite being controlled by that simple minded egg pitcher. His gauging was correct. The egg, hurled by the egg head terrorist, made its way perfectly to the window he was hoping to hit. I often wonder if the Egg Terrorist wears a costume of sorts when he goes out at night bearing the initials ET…however he could be afraid of copy write infringement. Now, as he runs and laughs, he leaves behind the product of his foolish behavior. The window is left with the egg damage, but the owner of the property is left standing in complete disarray over the foolishness of such behavior. The owner is left with a giant task at midnight to hose down the eggs and in the morning spend precious time cleaning egg shells out of the corners of the window pane. The Egg Terrorists are not really considered to be on the top priority of a 911 call. After all no “real” damage was done to property they say. Really?

So my R.A.N.T is that food in any sort, shape or form is not meant to be hurled at anything except a plate and in a mouth. Eggs are one of the food items that are on the top of my list as being the silliest things to waste along with the toilet paper and balloons, whose attackers by the way think that it is funny to drape toilet paper around a tree or to hit a person smack dab in the face with a balloon filled with water.

So, Egg Terrorist if you are reading this…take note that I have some people in some pretty high places that will find you. When they do, and they will find you…and take note, my sorry little absent minded fellow, that my mission is to tie you up and put you against the wall as I throw darts at you. And I may add…Possibly doing this blindfolded. HAHAHAHAHAHA

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Professor Sanee resides in Italy
and teaches the course 'the
Ethics of Humour' at I.M.A.
She's also author of the book,
"Why Isn't Anyone Laughing?"

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Tour of America's Dairyland - Bike Races - 06/26/13

Tuesday, Schlitz Park area - Pleasant Street. You can see the starting line behind the bikers.

The first part of the race is uphill. This is the corner of 2nd & East Reservoir.

Same corner, here is a shot of the pace car, followed closely by many of the racers.

Here's a close-up of one of the bikes.

A smaller group, continually checking behind them.

Coming around the corner of Vine & North Hubbard St.

A map of the course.

Additional information can be found HERE.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Doodie Duty

R.a.n.t. of week 06/23/13
I've never been much of a dog person for several reasons. Some dogs do nothing but bark constantly. Others get over excited and you wish they'd calm down. Additionally, some dog breeds are mean, vicious and uncontrollable. The thought of a dog wanting to jump in my face to lick it, turns my stomach. I know what they clean with those tongues. But there is one thing all dogs have it common. To be fair, it's something they have in common with every animal on the planet. I'm certain I need not elaborate. But it's not that, that I complain about. Nor am I actually complaining about dogs. I don't really mind dogs, just not certain I'd want to actually own one. One of the main reasons is because I'd be continually trying to clean up after it, specifically in the yard. Oh wait, could that be what I'm complaining about? But I don't have a dog, so why would I be about that? Well, my neighbour does own a dog, but I'm not certain the same principles are being followed. I think if you are going to keep a dog, the least you can do is clean up after it, especially when others share the same yard with you. Or at the very least, generate a map for me so I know where all the land mines are.

Answers to last weeks questions:

How well did you do on the quiz?
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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Milwaukee - Beauty and the Buildings

A perfect combination of Beauty and City.

The U.S. Bank building in the distance. 
I used to work there, it'll always be the 'First Wisconsin' centre to me.

Kind of hard to see, but there is a pond between the trees and the buildings.

You can see some of the reflection in the pond here. Another great example of Beauty and the City.

A great place for an early morning jog. I need to get involved in this again.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Safeguard Your Conscience

We must safeguard the conscience,
our 'inner voice'.
To avoid hazards and help
make the wisest choice.

Because if our faith
we do not check,
Our conscience experiences
emotional shipwreck.

It can be very simple,
our conscience to maintain.
Like all our theocratic goals
we must strive to train.

It's not something we do on our own,
we rely on Jehovah for the prep.
Cause man cant direct the way he walks,
not even one step.

You might not think ‘cause our past,
we doubt ourselves now and then.
But there is a way for us to be
clear from the blood of all men.

We must declare from house to house,
preaching all abroad.
Bearing witness, hold nothing back
all the counsel of our God.

So is your conscience bible guided?
Following principles of Godly worth?
Or do you want God as an enemy?
Then constitute friendship with this Earth.

If within our inner voice,
is something we don’t mind,
We still must avoid to wound
a neighbors conscience not inclined.

Would we want to risk offending
the spiritually weak?
Stumbling their faith,
giving an outlook that’s bleak?

How do we bear up,
our conscience to save?
When tempted by the world,
grievous things to crave?

We must quit being fashioned,
seeking this system’s respect.
And prove the will of our God,
which is acceptable and perfect.

If you call for understanding,
If Jehovah you truly laud.
If you seek as for silver or hid treasure,
You will find the knowledge of our God.

So let us follow our conscience,
keeping it spirit directed.
Then blessings will come from Jehovah,
and we will never be rejected.


This poem was inspired from the following scriptures:
1.) 1 Tim. 1:19
2.) Jer. 10: 23
3.) Acts 20: 20-35
James 4:4
1 Cor. 8: 10,11
Rom. 12: 2
Prov. 2: 3-5

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Blob By Any Other Name Is Still A Blob

R.a.n.t. of week 06/16/13

1. a horrific globule of matter. - i.e. Semi-truck driver or something similar.
2. a semi-sentient appearing matter, but having no realistic function.
3. a dull, slow-witted, and uninteresting person.
4. an object, having no redeeming qualities.

It's shouldn't be very surprising, but I've never really been happy with my self image. To be honest, ever since childhood I've battled with low self esteem problems. Of course self esteem comes in many forms. Some of the ways a person can feel good or bad about themselves includes looks, accomplishments, personality or social skills. This week, I've decided to touch on these aspects, and how I'm dealing with each. Additionally, there is a semi-quiz involved. How well do you know me?
P.S. The quiz is NOT about Semi's.

Ironically, my biggest inspiration comes from:
A). Driving semi-trucks.
B). Reading fitness magazines.
C). Baking low-fat brownies and cookies.
D). Listening to motivational speakers.
E). Watching 'Biggest Loser' on TV.
F). Working out in my dreams.
G). Planning marathons I'll never run in.

This is the one I have the most problem with. As a youth, I was never happy with my appearance. Being teased and made fun of in school because of my 'goofy' looks never helped the matter much. I look back now and realize it was mostly just mean kids being mean kids, really how many children are EVER happy with their looks (teased or not)? I'm assuming not many, or maybe I really did/do have a problem. In one of those funny twists of life, one thing I hated most about myself was being a 'stick'. My metabolism was so high, I never gained any weight. I was continually teased I would blow away. Anyone remember the ad in the back of comic books where the big tough guy is kicking sand in the scrawny guys face? Yes, I was the model for the scrawny guy. And now, I'm the other extreme. I now have such a hard time taking any weight off. Lately I've been managing to stay below 300 pounds, but just barely. Certainly makes it hard for me to maintain a high self esteem, at least in this area.

My number one goal in life has always been to be:
A). Semi-truck driver.
B). Photographer
C). Comedian
D). Green Bay Packer Quarterback.
E). Writer
F). Teacher
G). A contestant on Wheel of Fortune.

How often do we look at what we've accomplished in our life and criticize it? Once again, maybe not everyone does, maybe it's just me. But it's true, I criticize myself for lack of accomplishments in my writing. Ever since High School I've wanted to be a writer. Okay, I "AM a writer", I hear you saying. But I have always wondered if I could have done MORE with my writing. Could I have ever published a book if I had applied myself more? Could I have sold a poetry collection? Maybe had an article published in a magazine? Maybe, guess I'll never know unless I actually try some time. And why is it I put off doing so? I guess, that's where the low self esteem comes into play. I'm always worried that what I write, will automatically be rejected by anyone. So why bother? I know that's foolish, I just wish I didn't believe it so much.

My biggest personality fault is:
A). Swearing like a semi-driver.
B). Believing I'm superior to others.
C). Not having a sense of humour.
D). Loving to belittle others.
E). Being bossy and overbearing.
F). Having an "I don't care" attitude.
G). Always quiet, shy and withdrawn.

Unlike the first two aspects, this one has never bothered me too much. Of all the options in the question, I'd pick being quiet and shy over any of them. Not surprisingly, the rest in the list are things I have to one degree or another, already ranted about. I've never understood the need to use foul language in every sentence. It really just shows a lack of creativity and/or vocabulary. As for the sense of humour, I once knew this girl who never laughed at any of my jokes, and in fact, thought I was making fun of her. No, I really don't try to crack belittling jokes. It's just not my style. Still, being quiet, shy and withdrawn does affect my self esteem. At times I wish I wasn't so much, especially when put in new situations or with new people. Being shy, I have a hard time introducing myself to people and being quiet means I'm not a chatterbox, so have a hard time striking up or maintaining a conversation. How I envy others who do this so well.

Social Skills
The skill I'm less likely to want to work on is:
A.) Communication
B.) Listening
C.) Being empathetic
D.) Being kind and courteous.
E.) Being positive.
F.) Being humble.
G.) Crafting semi-truck jokes.

We can all improve in every aspect of our lives, some more than others. I'm not suggesting I have nothing to work on, but maybe some people need to work on a few of these skills more than I do. Like personality, I'm not so distraught over my handling of this topic. Personally, I think I've got very good social skills. True, I may be quiet and shy, but if you get me talking, I'm a motor-mouth. Also, if asked a question, I'll answer and try to find some way to continue the conversation. So why is it some people reply with one word answers, look away or just pretend you didn't ask a question. That's not good communication, and it certainly isn't good listening. By listening to what a person says, you can better identify with the person. If it's not something you can identify with, you can at least be empathetic to what the person is trying to tell you, show concern. If it's something you don't know how to handle, just listening and trying to be supportive may be enough. When you try to show them support, you show yourself to be a kind and courteous person. Keeping these few things in mind will have quite the positive effect on how people view your own social skills. As for being humble? I don't really need to work on this. I know I'm a humble person. In fact I'm so humble, I've actually won awards, and proudly display them in my house..  

Quiz Bonus Points are awarded this week if you can identify all four of the blobs.
Answers revealed next week
Or just click HERE.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pierre & Robert H.W.F. Macelhenny III

Although Pierre does not appear, it was this video that inspired the comedic team of Pierre and Robert H.W.F. Macelhenny III.

For a talent show, my friend Conrad and I attempted to recreate my "Cooking Show" video. Pierre and Robert H.W.F. Macelhenny III were born. As you can tell, our characters are just starting to develop.

Teaming up once more, Conrad and I included our friend Bradley. We both refined our characters slightly. In this skit, Robert H.W.F. Macelhenny III is being interviewed about a food themed book.

Robert prepares to read a food poem he wrote. However Pierre has lost the poem Robert H.W.F. Macelhenny III is supposed to read.

Our most recent skit. Robert and Pierre tackle the daunting task of cooking Karen style.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A Closed Book

R.a.n.t. of week 06/09/13
Anyone that knows me to any degree, undoubtedly knows how much of an open book I am. I've never been shy about sharing various aspects of my life. True, in person I can be quiet and shy at times, but there are many ways a person can get to know me. As a writer, there isn't any excuse for not being able to get to know me, I'm out there. When I was younger, I kept a personal journal, even shared bit of it with my closest friends. As the digital age came upon us, I began utilizing more and more resources as a form of expression. Blogging, poetry, photography and any short stories I've written say volumes about who I am. And yet, anyone who's reading this r.a.n.t. I'm more or less, 'preaching to the choir', as it were. But there is a reason I brought this up.

Knowing this about me helps you understand what I'm really ranting about. People who keep a closed book. As an open person, I've never understood the need to be closed. People who never allow anyone inside, who refuse to answer even simple questions, or unwilling to show any sign of emotional response. Recently I've been dealing with a certain family problem, but every response to "what's wrong" is answered with "nothing" or "I don't want to talk about it". It can be ridiculously frustrating. Additionally, there are people who you do nice things for and the only response is to keep quiet. Would a simple "Thank you", be too much to ask? Oddly enough, these are the same people who never have a kind word in greeting, certainly not voluntarily. If you say hi to them, it's possible to get a "hello" back, but usually either icy or bland. Everyone has a personality, but being bland or 'closed' is NOT a personality. It's a deception, a falsehood, a side-step. Would it be so difficult to just open up a little? You may not think it, but you can find great comfort in sharing yourself with others; your grief, your joy, your hopes and dreams, your fears. You certainly can't judge a book by it's cover, so open your book and let others enjoy your story.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Burnt Forest

Burnt and charred as a forest fire.
Despondency's all I acquire.

Darkness over me does consume.
Declining mood falls into gloom.

She lit a match with each deter.
But knows not she's the saboteur.


Sunday, June 2, 2013

Preoccupied with 1985

R.a.n.t. of week 06/02/13
Once upon a time, life seemed so much easier and had less stress. Most evenings involved sitting in my bedroom, working on homework and listening to Bruce Springsteen or Madonna. Keep in mind, this was way before Nirvana was on the scene. Additional bands popular at the time were U2 and Blondie and there was even music still on MTV. But things are so much different now. Now, I have two kids in high school that tell me I'm uncool.

So do you wonder why I'm preoccupied with 1985. Well, lately there are times I'd like to hit the wall when I realize paying bills take place over all. My hopes and desires no longer take precedence. Not long after High School, my dreams somehow went out the door, probably when I first turned twenty four. Now it seems I'm just a lonely man, what ever happened to my plan? I was gonna be a writer, I was gonna win a Pulitzer award. I was gonna be renowned and famous, never again would I be ignored. My Toyota is now the enemy, as average as my average life. And nothing ever sees to be all right.

Back then life revolved around the Summer films, now they have a 'classic' classification. Back to the Future, Weird Science and even European Vacation. I still rock out to Wham 'cause I'm not a 'Bowling for Soup' fan. I learned all about Rio, from listening to Duran Duran. So I simply have to ask, when did reality become entertaining TV? Whatever happened to sitcoms and game shows and those crazy 80's clothes? Now Ozzie's an actor and Mötley Crüe is classic rock.

How I hate the passing of time, can someone please just make it stop? And bring back Springsteen, Madonna or anything before Nirvana. I want to listen to U2 and Blondie and watch videos on MTV. I don't care my two high school kids think I'm uncool. You see, I'll always be preoccupied with 19, 19, 1985.