Thursday, January 10, 2008

Excess Baggage

Some random thoughts for your consideration.

I don't feel good admitting this, but I'm hooked on 'Deal or No Deal' again. I don't watch it because of the game, I watch it to pinpoint when, exactly, the player should take the deal. Of all the games this season, my seven year old and I have marked the exact offer the contestant should have taken the deal before things start falling apart. That's right, my seven year old has better sense than the people on the show. One woman, who happened to be a pig farmer by trade - had an offer of over $200,000 and refused. She left with a penny. No really - one cent. It was fantastic! Greed is a horribly entertaining thing.

I tested my hypothesis with my son, by the way. We went online and I had him play Deal or No Deal. He did surprisingly well and the lowest amount he left with was $177,000. Not bad. Should get him on the show.

I didn't think it was possible, but I like Roger Clemens even less than I did before. Turns out the phone call he recorded was in response to his old friend asking that Clemens call his terminally ill son as a way of motivating him to get better. Clemens instead used the email request to call his former trainer, McNamee (shouldn't he be on 'Grey's Anatomy' with that name?) and record the conversation without McNamee's knowledge. Clemens never called McNamee's son. Class guy.

By the way, some details are emerging from Clemens' interview on '60 Minutes' that make Roger than truthful. You can brush up on the inconsistencies here. McNamee, for the record, has not changed anything about his story. Even during a call that Clemens recorded and played for the world. Found that interesting.

Prediction: Some other evidence will be coming out about Clemens and drugs within two weeks.

I have a suspicion that Britney Spears really isn't crazy. After her supposed 'breakdown' and standoff with the police (was it out of the question for a sniper to take her out from the house across the street? Should have been their first option) I'm convinced her mother called and asked her to take the heat off her little sister. What better way to take the spotlight away from your pregnant 16 year old sister than an impromptu hostage situation and belated bi-polar diagnosis? It's genius!

One of my Presidential opponents, Mike Huckabee - whether serious or not - wants to have Stephen Colbert as his running mate. "The only reason I'm the front-runner now is because of the Colbert bump," said Huckabee. Think I like Huckabee more now.

Every now and then someone performs a singular act of unselfishness and sacrifice that gives me hope for this race of humans. Here is one such act. Brought tears to my eyes. Not because the girl was nice, but because Hannah Montana has become this much of a phenomenon.

Speaking of which, I walk into my parent's house and witness my 6 year old niece in full Hannah Montana gear (blonde wig, head piece microphone) dancing on some pad and singing along with a video playing on the television. What are we doing to our children?

Remember my rant about the music industry and their insane obsession about music sharing? Well, Sony just became the last of the four major music labels to get rid of their Digital Rights Management (DRM) software. This basically means Sony, EMI, Warner, and Universal will be making their music available in MP3 format on their own sites. Why should you care? Because once you buy music you can do whatever you want with it. Burn it to cd, put it on multiple MP3 players, put it on your computer. You listening Apple? This may be the beginning of the end for iTunes.

Reason number one we will no longer be viewing Ethanol objectively: GM CEO Rick Wagoner thinks we need 10 times more Ethanol fueling stations than we currently have. Why would he think this? GM is banking on their 'fuel flexible' cars, which run on E85 and standard gas, to become a huge hit and more E85 fueling stations increases the odds GM will make money. Never mind this study that just came out (along with many others lately), that claims these new biofuels may do more harm than good. I've been saying all along, when corporations invest billions into something rational thinking goes out the window.

Also, turns out corn ethanol may also be promoting deforestation of the Amazon. Fucking fantastic!

I know I bitch about trivial things, but I really do consider myself lucky in that my friends and family are healthy and not too much of a pain in my ass. Still, reminders of my charmed life can be a horrible thing. A friend of mine gave birth to a baby boy on December 23rd and he has been in intensive care at Children Hospital in Boston for the past week. She woke in the middle of the night to find her son rigid and not breathing. He is suffering seizures and the doctors aren't sure what is wrong with him despite a battery of tests. Speaking as a parent, there is nothing to make you feel more helpless than being unable to make your own child get better.

Here's hoping new baby gets well and enjoys a long, healthy life.

Today's distraction: A cool sketching game to kill some time. Got a bit bored with this after a bit, but I may have ADD.

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