Monday, March 28, 2005

Monday Morning

Alright, worked a lousy shift last week and am tired and grumpy. I worked every shift from late night to early morning and a double on Saturday, so I feel like someone's bitch left out to dry......

Anyway some thoughts this Monday as I again play the workshift shuffle.....

Easter Sunday has come and gone, it was nice to see the whole family (when I wasn't working) and my family (wife, boy) went to mass together. Now if you remember my last Easter rant on the C&E Christians (Christmas and Easter) this might be a surprise...I am not a "Churchie" or "Biblethumper" but did have issue with people who came to mass twice a year (Easter and Christmas) and made life miserable for the rest of us regulars, but after this Sunday I have sort of changed my tune....our priest said (his thoughts my words) basically welcome to the fold, see you at Christmas time but try to find a Sunday in the next month to come back, then the month after that and so on, so that come Christmas you have been here a few more times, not asking for you to become a regular, yet....but give it a try. Hearing this I thought he was on to something and have since changed my tune and had a pleasant Easter Sunday and not a bad thought at the over crowding and people unfamiliar with the mass.........this will probably last until Christmas when I have to sit behind a family who's kids don't know how to behave at mass........but it is a start......

Terry Shivio: I am torn on the issue but say only this, there better be an autopsy so we can find out what caused her to fall into this sate in the first place, my guess is her husband was the original Scott Peterson.........

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Mr. Bitterman, Party of One

Tons of stuff out and about so here goes the rants:

We just got a new control room and office at the station. It is state of the art, nice, clean and roomy. Our office has computers, a door that closes and I have an actual desk to put photos and such up. All in all a nice job was done on almost everything. Except my/our workstation in the control room. See I work with a video switcher, maybe 4ft wide by 2.5 ft deep plus various routers and racks mounted behind it. Well the powers that be decided on the dimensions of the desk tops around the switcher and the angles of the mounted routers based on what LOOKED good to them, people who do not sit and use the equipment. Now all the routers and switcher menu are out of reach and unusable. When we complain they give us a look like what you don't like all the hard work we did?!?!? They measured and found they had put the equipment 5 inches out of reach for the TALLEST guy we have, none too smart. Now they have to retrofit these panels and they are going to look like a hack job. Me, I blame the carpenter, who is also the brother of one of the employees. He built 3 work stations, one was 2.5 inches to big and overhangs a raised platform, one was 4 inches too big and blocks a handicaped ramp and one was 2 inches too short (ours) and had to be raised. One thing after another......

Rant 2.1:

Talked to an old buddy this weekend and was surprised to find a) some people in NY are still pissed/angry about what went down with the union and are still talking about it and b) it still got my goat when he told me about it. What is comes down to is this: noone wanted to job so it was handed to me, my executive board decided to have their own secret meetings and discuss ways to sabotage the station and got found out by the station and the union, same said executive board lied to everyone about it therefore eliminating all trust I ever had in them and forcing me to look to my staff rep as the only help in making difficult decisions. Now one year later they seem to forget their part in it and lay the blame at my feet.

Well fuck you you backstabbing, lying cock sucking motherfuckers, I gave 6 years of my life to a cause you wanted nothing to do with and when you did get involved you fucked it up and passed the buck. Well now I am miles away and happy in my job and place in life and you all are still wallowing in the shit you created. You deserve every fucking thing that happens to you and my only regret is that the handful of you selfish bastards make life more difficult for the rest of the union members you seem to forget you represent. Stop fucking each other up the ass thinking you are the coolest thing since white bread and come to realize you are fucking miserable people who aren't well thought of outside your little circle and your actions have consequences that affect the unit as a whole. I did the best I could with the help of my staff rep and various members and none from my reps from one station. To those being represented by them, step up and get involved before they do irreparable damage.


Monday, March 14, 2005

Appearances and Regulars

We are an "Eating Out Family", that is until we moved here and took a
budget hit. While in New York we would go to various restaurants at
least twice a week. Now my wife has been in the biz since she was 14.
Her family owns a nice little Italian place near Lake George, NY, so
she understands tipping and living on tips. So when we go out we tip
well, 20% or better. The thing is we are/were jeans and polo people.
We would come into the place, two 24 year olds and their 1 year old
and would get OK service while our waiter/tress concentrated on the
well dressed couple that will tip them 2 bucks on a $30 tab and we hit
$5 on the $25 bill.

Pretty soon we would hit the same places and were getting known by the
staff and things changed. We are not wealthy but we appreciated good
service and rewarded it nicely. I enjoyed walking into a place and
the staff knowing your drink or appetizer order and asking if you
wanted the usual. Now we live in a town were people do not know us
and we eat out very little now. There is this one place that treats
us well and we enjoy going there knowing we will get good service no
matter if we are just in from church in Sunday best or grabbing a bite
after a long baseball tournament.

I really miss being a "Norm". There were several place in Rochester
were I could go and get great food, good talk and a little extra from
the boss. Three places stand out: one was a sub place owned by a guy
named Vinny. I forget the actually man of the place but Vinny was the
man and I (along with several others) could call early (we ate lunch
at 9am) and get him to make us some sandwiches. Not only would he
fire up the ovens early for us, we always got a little extra (large
instead of medium, a look the other way when short and even a few
freebies) and ended up spending most of the lunch break talking to him
then running back to the station and eating during a show. The other
place was Charlie Brown's, a little greasy spoon that made the best
Fratatta's (omelet like) and HUGE pancakes. We once had a Full Stack
contest were I ate a full stack of pancakes, the waitress warned me
not too but I did anyway and did eat until the next day, AWESOME.
Charlie would always greet us and take us to our seat, one day I
decided to take the wife there for breakfast and there was a huge line
out the door. We pushed in to put our names on a list when Charlie
saw me and shook my hand. I told him I finally got the wife to come
out and enjoy what I have been enjoying for years. He took one look
at us, then the line, then took us to a booth in the back. The wife
still talks about that one, her husband, Mister Big Shot. Finally
There was Nick Tahoe's, home of the Garbage Plate. Look it up, you
will not believe something that ugly could taste that good. A dive in
the worse part of town with quick service and great food. A must stop
whenever in Rochester.

The moral of today's tale:
1) Treat your servers right and tip as well as you can...

2) Treat your customers right with the best service you can, that guy
in the sweats with 5 kids might drop a $10 in your hand for a few hot
dogs and fries if you keep the kids in crayons.

3) Find a good place and make it your own!!!!

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Reap What You Sow.

SO this 10 year old this morning steals his aunts car and gets into a high speed chase with the police and ends up losing control and wrapping around a tree just missing a home. Dumb ass 10 year old, if it was my son would be beaten till black and blue, then a few more whacks to prove the point. This all happens ONE DAY after another local kid (15) gets into it with police in another high speed chase and rams a police car killing the police officer inside. They want to try him as an adult and I hope and pray they get that chance and this kid disappears for the next 5-10 in Big Boys Prison.

Right before I left New York the same thing happened with reverse consequences. Young man goes on joy ride and leads cops all over downtown Rochester. He goes into a dead end street and while turning around the police set up a roadblock. Police cars across the road, officers on the street yelling, pointing guns and waving to stop, kid guns the engine and aims the vehicle towards one officer. Bang, bang, dead boy. The kicker is it was a black youth and white cops and the local reverend and Association of Everything Is Racist come out and call for the officers heads. Thank God the Chief stood up to the activists, the troublemakers and the mayor. Boy does bad, boy puts lives in jeopardy, officer put in position to choose his life or the criminals life. Sorry your boy is dead but officer reacted properly.

I am not saying the boy deserved to die, but in the end when it comes down to man trying to protect his community, life, fellow officers and family versus man committing crime and trying to do more harm, I pull the trigger every time.

Kinda like this Italian Reporter accident in Iraqi. Do not tell me a US patrol just opens up after they comply and stop their car. They were getting the hell out of dodge and didn't stop for no one. Again, no happy they are dead but better them then our boys slaughtered by a car bomber. PS the Italians paid the terrorists 2 million for her release, now you know who to thank for the next several hundred suicide bombers.


Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Ringo Starr

What?!?!? You say, Ringo Star?!?!?!?! So the question is this, Creative Genius or just a good 4-4 Drummer??

Music is a lot like politics and religion, hot debates, conflicting opinions and hurt feelings. If you are a regular reader you know my musical tastes start and end with Canadian Power Trio Rush. I am however a lover of music and music history. So when the Brian Wilson story/Smile was on Showtime I DVRed it and soaked it up like a sponge. The Beach Boys are to my Dad as Rush is to me and I remember growing up listening to Beach Boy records all the time. Sure he liked the Beatles, Elvis and those sock hop glory day singers but it was always the Beach Boys. So I had an appreciation for their music and as I got older for their genius. I always felt that the Boy, mostly Brian, suffered from a lack of respect for their music because of its theme, Surf Music. However if you listen to the early albums (before Brian went crazy and Dennis died) you can see/hear the seed that early pioneers had sown actually flower and create the foundation of rock and roll today. During this Smile special they interviewed many industry mainstays and experts including the producer for the Beatles. John and Paul heard the break through album PetSounds and copied that, developed on it and created Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. At the same time Brian Wilson was working on the follow up Smile, it never happened as the Beach Boys wanted to go in a different direction. 30 some odd years later Smile was released to much fan fare and critical awareness. Paul McCartney said of Smile, if it was released when intended we (the Beatles) would never had done Sgt. Pepper's, it is that good. So here we have one of the creative forces behind the most influential band on today's music saying that there was one who did it first, and his name is Brian Wilson. General appearances can be deceiving, and opinions incorrect. Let one's work speak for itself and you would be amazed at the doors opened.......

PS 4-4 drummer, have you ever seen his All-Stars.

Monday, March 07, 2005

We Don't Need No Education

SO the weekend is over the Monday is here. We had a good week last week, worked the boy hard and he really stepped up to the plate. I contacted each and every one of his teachers via e-mail and discussed our concerns with them, instant feedback. Everyone of his teachers spoken with the boy and let him know that They knew he was an A student in New York and he needed to take responsibility and get back to trying his best. We worked on him at home and spent a lot of the week helping with homework and giving him that mental push so he could complete it on his own. I think it also helps that he is getting involved outside of school again. We sort of took a break after Fall Baseball and Football, with the holidays and school break, new year and all the other lame excuses I do not need to write. That said, Baseball is here (tryouts last night), he is finally involved in Boy Scouts and we sign up for a few summer camps, one at the YMCA is for Junior Councilors which he wants to do and they pay him after the camp is done.

Good one for the boy this week so I am leaving on a positive note this post as to not dole out any bad karma.

Till next time.

Friday, March 04, 2005

The Passing of a Friend

In September of 1993 I was one of the few people in the Watertown, New York area to see NYPD Blue. The local affiliate had caved to the pressure and withheld the first few episodes. Working at the CBS affiliate at the time I had access to Satellite technology and was able to pick up this NYPD Blue show on a bird and record it for home viewing. What we saw was ground breaking, well written, well acted and just plain old Great Television. For the next 12 years we had a date once a week to watch this entertaining, thoughtful and risky show. My wife and I never missed an episode, when I worked nights we stayed up late to watch or watched it the next morning, we had a collection of friends who would record it when we were on vacation or out of town. Through schedule shifting, cast changes, cancellation threats and Ricky Schroeder we held on and enjoyed the ride. Last Tuesday marked the end of a series, it's like we will never see again. Last night the wife and I watched the hour long retrospective that aired before the finale (we didn't want to spoil anything) and marveled at the people involved and the envelope it pushed in it's early years. Better than MASH, better than Cheers, this hour long police drama seasoned well and brought it's fans, cast and crew on an incredible ride and I for one am thankful these people took the risk all those years ago. Tuesday nights will be very lonely for a while and CBS, NBC, and ABC with their CSI's, Law and Orders and such owe much of today's police drama success to Stephen Bochco and Bill Clark. The Fall Season is a little but dimmer with the loss of this great show and I for one am thankful of it's classy exit and now extra free hour of time I now have as nothing will ever replace it.

Thanks for the memories.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Party Update

Note: Written last night via E-mail but never posted here:

Last night in the Indiana State House, the Democrats staged a walkout
and held the House Floor hostage for 14 hours, at Midnight the
deadline passed and 134 bills died on the floor. Several important
pieces of legislation like Daylight Savings Time, Stadium Funding, and
the controversial bill that would require all registered voters to
show a Picture ID before voting, the big one according to the Dems.
Also lost in the mix was funding for Social Services, easing Jail
overcrowding and a Child Protection law. There is a provision in the
Indiana Constitution that would allow the Speaker of the House to send
out the State Police to round up all missing Representatives and bring
them to the floor. Since the Dems were not on the floor the House
never reached Quorum and could not vote on anything. Each and every
one of these men and women who held out and were mostly standing in
the hall outside the House Floor should be brought up on recall
charges and let their district vote in someone who would do the
people's business. If I was the Speaker I would have had the State
Police out there by hour 4.

The Party would support a bill stating that any elected official who
knowingly holds up the people's business to play party politics can be
removed from office and a special election take place in their home
district within the week.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Late Shift, Oscars and Party Update.

Today I work the late shift. Not that bad as it is basically 3-11pm. I do not like it because I do not see my son and wife at all when I work it, but the man who cuts my check needs the shift filled for the next few weeks and I need the check acoming.

The Oscars were Sunday and not to rehash every talk show, radio show and other bloggers so I will not. What I will say is that we were big Oscar watchers for many years and now we don't feel like there is any reason. We are big film people, I prefer action, horror, sci-fi, thrillers but will watch just about anything (except The English Patient). So it is a little sad that we have lost interest in the night we had always looked forward to. Then it occurred to me that the Oscars are all about making Hollywood look good to the average man on the street when we watched one bit by Chris Rock. See Hollywood is all about the money and the blockbuster, period. They make the schlock that people want to buy popcorn and sit in the theater and get blown away by and there is nothing wrong with that. It has brought movies such as Spider-Man, Independence Day, The Lord of the Rings, The Sixth Sense, etc to the enjoyment of many. Some are well written, others well Directed and a few well acted, but all were made 1) by the creative process of those involved and 2) because a studio executive thought it would MAKE MONEY. Then the Oscar nominations come out and a majority of them are attempts by Hollywood to say, Look at us we make moral stories and period pieces and "Good" film like back in the day. I call BULLSHIT... and nothing exposed it more than Chris Rock's trip the Magic Johnson Theater where he asked movie patrons if they had seen any of the nominated films and most didn't and the audience laughed because they didn't see Million Dollar Baby but they saw White Chicks. Now I admit White Chicks to me was pure crap but some executive OK'ed it but I drew the line when one guy mentioned Saw. Saw was a well written, well acted and well directed thriller that I felt was not only effective as a movie but fresh and not a retread, sequel, or remake and the audience laughed because it is not a real film. The arrogance!

I am so pissed now that the party Update will wait.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Failure Is Not An Option....

Mid Term grades came this weekend and the boy is in deep shit. WE are not too sure what the hell to do with him. When he actually does his work he gets A+ but more often than not he turns it in late and gets an F. His English grade is a C+ and every grade in that class is either an A+ of an F. What the #$%@!!!!!! We are not sure where this came from as he has been an A student since kindergarten and now at 6th Grade he falls apart!! We rode him last grading term for the same thing but it did not sink in apparently. We are totally at a loss and cannot think of what to do. I have anger everywhere, starting with the boy, us and the teachers. When a student has 7 F's in a row because of missing homework do you not think to contact the parents??? I am not deflecting blame, it starts and ends with the boy but we the parents and teachers need to step up and help. Just pissed and angry and sad and frustrated, didn't eat and woke up at 3:30 am and never went back to bed.