Tidbits, observations, and tips

Dude, I’m tellin ya……..

As I enter Day 8 of my battle with the flu, I’ve had some ample TV time and lots of down time to think about things going on around me.

First off, is it me or is it just so ridiculous the way the incumbent party jumps to its feet 116 times every time a President gives a State of the Union address? As you all know my opinion on politics at this point, I’m sure it’s rather obvious that I don’t watch these spectacles. But seeing as how they broadcast it on every other channel when they do occur (like Wednesday night), one can’t help but catch four or five minutes of the whole affair. And every time I’m flipping past the speech, the Prez can’t say 50 words without the people in attendance jumping to their feet and giving him a standing O.

I mean it’s comical after a while, isn’t it? Putting aside my disinterest in politics, I just find it funny how the live audience of Washington insiders do this. And it’s been going on as long as I can remember. No matter who the President. Obviously, most of the people in live attendance are his staunchest supporters including his own cabinet members and closest allies in Washington. But I have to admit that sometimes I stop and watch perhaps 2-3 minutes of the speech just to see how many times the audience jumps to their feet in Pavlovian-esque response to what the man is saying.

He could say, “When our forefathers laid down their lives to build this great nation (standing O)………they knew that they were part of something bigger and better than just advancing democracy (standing O). They knew that they were laying the foundation for our children (standing O) and their children (standing O) and many generations of Americans to come (standing O).”

I just find it hilarious to watch the grandstanding and the blind support and the whole pageantry. And then when it is over, the other party gives their reply. And the speech was written prior to the President’s address. No matter what the President says while he is on-stage, the response has already been written, edited, and re-edited. The Prez could sing the praises of the other party, state that their approach to government is indeed best, and announce that he is switching political affiliations. And the other party would read the same pre-prepared response.

Such nonsense.

On a more serious and legitimate subject, if you didn’t come out to that last show I was pumping for the band  West 34  at Rolling Lanes earlier this month, y’all messed up big-time. They blew the friggin roof off the place. My buddy “Big Wave” Dave Johnson did me the favor of playing my usual request. I’m sure he gets tired of me asking them to play the Eric Johnson guitar piece Cliffs of Dover. But he usually does it for me every time I attend their shows and I just love it. He belts it out like EJ himself and you won’t hear a better rendition if you go and pay $50 at The Aragon downtown (Chicago) when Eric Johnson rolls thru every three or four years. Or ten.

So if you missed the show, you messed up. But you can redeem yourself. The band is playing the same venue on Saturday, February 27. They have several gigs in-between now and then where you can see them play. Check out their website at the end of this post. But me and my friends will be back up at Rolling Lanes in Countryside to hear these guys sing the blues. Last gig, Dave was up on top of the tables while a group of hot blondes were shaking their thing up by the stage. Raucous stuff for a bowling alley bar.

I’ve also spent some time on-line reading another buddy’s website called ShareMyShot.com

I think I have mentioned this site long ago when I was offering suggestions on great hot wings, cool websites, and other such things. But now this site is well-established and it’s really pretty entertaining. This buddy of mine goes downtown to work every day and actually tries (alcoholic) shots that people have sent in or suggested to the people that work there. They have a big office on the floor of some building on Wacker Drive and he gets paid to drink shit like Buttery Nipples and the Vulcan Mind Meld.


But the write-ups he gives these drinks are often kind of funny and they give you the exact recipe and offer up a nice, little history of some of the ingredients like Ouzo or Hpnotiq. Check it out. Bookmark it. They put up fresh material almost every day and it’s often worth a chuckle.

Finally, as I’ve been laid up ill, I’ve caught up to reruns of my all-time favorite show——All in the Family. I just love Archie Bunker to death. And one of the chief reasons why is because Archie reminds me so much of my dad. My father isn’t a bigot as Archie was. Not by any means. It’s the other personality traits that they share that makes the connection for me.

Like mispronouncing celebrity and sports stars names. My brother and I always got such a big kick when we were growing up when my father would refer to former Chicago Blackhawks superstar Stan Mikita as “Stan Mosquita”. Or when he would misquote old cliches or adages that people use. Combine them like, “You know what they say…..the early bird always lets sleeping dogs lie.”

Sometimes he would do it on purpose, but many times he was serious about it. The thing I relate to the most is when Archie picks on his son-in-law Mike about how lazy he is or how much he eats. My dad would often call my brother or I  ” Billy Big Eyes ” as we forked some corn beef on to our plate or grabbed several slices of pizza out of the box. And whenever we cut the grass or mowed the lawn, somehow it was always “a half-assed job”.

On a recent episode of Archie, his wife Edith gave kudos for the son-in-law fixing the light in the kitchen. And Archie told her, “The guy changed a lightbulb, Edith. Don’t act like he re-wired the joint.”

Start feeling better soon, Pop.

Don’t make me come out there to Vegas.

You know how I am out there.




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