Monday, November 29, 2010

Quote of the Week- Gerald Ford

Today, we conclude our series which has featured quotes from the last 12 presidents before Barack Obama, starting with Franklin D. Roosevelt (we ran quotes on both blogs; the other one is The Daily Vampire which features a quote from Jimmy Carter today).

Virtually every president in modern times has played golf, but the game is asscoiated with Gerald Ford and Dwight D. Eishenhower more than anyone else, so for that reason this quip seems to be the most appropriate:

"I know I am getting better at golf because I am hitting fewer spectators."

The Gerald Ford Museum in Ann Arbor, Mich., is featuring an exhibit on the president's visit to Mao Tse Tung's China and a special exhbit on Betty Ford is running until Feb. 27, 2011.

SIDEBAR: Of course, we have to mention Chevy Chase whenever we mention Gerald Ford since the president's clumsiness was lampooned by the then-emerging star on "Saturday Night Live" in 1975. Chevy Chase, Md., happens to be a DC-suburb. And, our favorite DC suburb Bethesda, Md., is just a few zip codes over from there. If one is in Bethesda, they may want to visit The Lebanese Taverna (apologies to those of you who think a Turkish-American should only promote Turkish restaurants; we love Tallula's in Chapel Hill, NC, btw). The joint in Maryland is offering cooking lessons this month focusing on dishes like spinach salad and quince tarts. I guess one of the ironies of living in a small town is that I am one of the few people I know who thinks living in the 'burbs would be simply awesome!

50 Beers from Around the World- Starr Hill (Charlottesville, Va.)

Today, we shift our focus from beers in sometimes obscure parts of the world, like Paraguay (yes, we did profile a beer from there!), to talk about beers that are closer to home.

Many Virginians are familiar with Starr Hill Beer, a brand that is brewed in Crozet, Va. (Charlottesville), and is extremely popular in Roanoke and Richmond. The beer can also be found in the Carolinas, Maryland, Georgia and Florida among other states.

I recently tried a Starr Hill (ironically I drink beer as often as Donny Osmond or Cat Stevens!) at the Kirk Avenue Music Hall in Roanoke the other night and I really liked it. The venue hosts Nashville-singer Megan McCormick tomorrow night.

Starr Hill was also featured on the reality tv show "Top Chef" and among its brands are the award-winning Jomo Lager which is made from Munich and caramel barley.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

50 Beers from Around the World- Red Stripe (Jamaica)

"Hooray, beer!"

That is the famous catch logo for Red Stripe beer, the most famous export from Jamaica after the late Bob Marley.

The beer is named after its red stripe logo (did we really need to wiki that?), and it was first brewed in the capital Kingston on July 31, 1918.

Red Stripe was first imported to the United States in 1985, but it wasn't as popular as initially anticipated. That all changed when the brew began sponsoring reggae events and by the mid-1990s one could even find the beer in grocery stores in places like Mount Airy, NC.

There is also some interesting trivia associated with the beer. Reportedly, it was temporarily banned in America in 1989 because drug smugglers were putting cannibis in several of the brand's brown bottles.

In 2009 during the Beer Summit with Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., Cambridge, Mass., police officer Jim Crowley, President Barack Obama and Veep Joe Biden, Gates initially wanted to have a Red Stripe. But, word spread out and Boston beer lovers and perhaps right-wing hotheads like Rush Limbuagh made an issue of it, so Gates ordered a Sam Adams Light instead. Limbaugh, who is a cigar fan, has probably smoked a Cuban himself!

SIDEBAR: Shocking news out of Turkey as a company in the southeast city of Gaziantep has developed 'instant Turkish coffee' according to Yigal Schieifer with the blog Kebabistan. According to the post/news story, Semesttin Yilmaz developed the new 'Shazili' brand of instant Turkish coffee with both sweet and non-sweet versions to find a unique niche on the market. But, according to Kebabistan, the real thing should be enjoyed at the Mandabatmaz Restaurant in Istanbul. Closer to home, one can drink Turkish coffee at Tallulah's*, a Turkish joint, in Chapel Hill, NC.

*-Alas, it is not spelled correctly on our links!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Quote of the Week- George HW Bush aka Papa Smurf

Yes, we had to make fun of the Bush family though in all fairness to the veep who went on to beat Michael Dukakis (who I voted for which did not go over well with my Turkish relatives in Istanbul), George H.W. Bush now seems like a voice of rational sanity in the GOP.

At the George HW Bush Library in College Station, Tex. (on the Texas A&M campus), there is an interesting-looking exhibit of red dresses worn by first ladies ranging from Lady Bird Johnson to Pat Nixon to Hillary Clinton to Laura Bush. Sponsored by The Heart Truth Foundation, the exhbit runs through Aug. 14, 2011.

Ben Franklin impersanator Art Yeoman also stops by the Bush Library on Nov. 30, and the museum will host a screening of the original 1947 version of "Miracle on 34th Street" on Dec. 9.

Here is the quote from 'Papa Smurf:' "I'll be glad to reply or to dodge any of your questions, depending on what I think will help me get elected."

SIDEBAR: An actual conversation (more or less) that I had with servants at the 24/7 diner Texas Tavern in Roanoke, Va., last night:

Me: What's a Cheezy?

Server One: It's a cheesy western. They're very popular 'round here. It's a cheeseburger with a fried egg that's got relish on top it.

Me: Wow! That can't be good for the heart? So, is it really that popular 'round here?'

Server Two: Far and away, it's our most popular sandwich. People come from all over to have it.

Me: You mean like from Lynchburg? (an hour away)

Server One: Oh, a lot farther than that!

Me: Like where? Pittsburgh?

Server Two: We've had people come from the west coast for our burgers.

Me: Really?

Server Two: You betcha, man. We got some of the best burgers in the country around here.

SIDEBAR TWO: We wanted to mention the town of Strasburg, Va., an hour and a half south of DC, two and a hlaf hours north of Roanoke, which up until this year housed the kitschy, but unique Museum of American Presidents. But, the town which now has a coffeehouse called Cristina's Cafe downtown has gotten more attention lately because pitching phenom Stephen Strasburg is playing for the nearby Washington Nationals.

Friday, November 26, 2010

High School of the Week- Woodrow Wilson High School (Washington DC)

We have focused on Ragsdale High School in Jamestown, NC (near Greensboro), Bluefield High School in Bluefield, WVa, and Clarke County High School in Athens, Ga., but we have not yet focused on any high schools in the nation's capital.

So, today we conclude our series (at least until sometime next year, perhaps) with a blog entry dedicated to students at Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, DC, so high school kids in Capital City don't feel like we are snubbing them.

WWHS (there is a school of the same name in Beckley, West WVa) is located in Tenlytown, and among the school's famous alumni are Warren Buffet and former DC mayor Adrian Fenty. Buffet graduated in 1947, and was voted as being very likely to become a stock broker.

The school mascot is the Wilson Tiger (obviously, this is NOT the school helmet) and the school colors are green and white.

Pete Cahall is the principal of the school, which has students from 85 different countries. The Tigers also have their own squash and crew teams!

SIDEBAR: In a story that we could call 'Midnight Express in Reverse,' the NPR talk show "The Story," hosted by Dick Gordon, reported back on Nov. 15 that a Canadian of Iraqi descent Yassin Alsalman, aka The Narcisyst, a filmmaker/rap singer who once made a video of what it would be like to racially profiled by airport security had that very same experience while at the Toronto Airport. And, after an unholy five hours of integration with no basis, Alsalman was denied entry into The United States.

He was attempting to travel to Washington, DC, for a film screening at a film festival there. A few shows later, one listener who is hopefully a Tea Bagger said Alsalman got exactly what he deserved which is what Turkish people once said about Billy Hayes (the man whose story was told in "Midnight Express"). So much for a global community.

SIDEBAR TWO: Drew Carey, the comedian who hosts "The Price is Right," and Scott Simon of NPR were both making fun of President Barack Obama's pickup basketball game injury today which resulted in 12 stiches on his lip through Twitter. Carey tweeted that 'he didn't know that Obama was playing basketball with Dick Cheney,' while Simon said the man the president was playing with could end up becoming ambassador to North Korea.

SIDEBAR THREE: In the "Did She Really Say That?" Dept., Sarah Palin told far right-wing nutcase Glenn Beck this week that: "We need to stick with our North Korean allies."

Things We Learned on Twitter This Week- Southwest Airlines Thinks We Still Like to Fly

Ahh, yes, the good ole days before 9/11 when it took less time to get through the airport in Albany, New York*, than it did in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. Oh well!

With the advent of the new full body scanners which has undoubtedly increased ACLU memberships, people from Portland, Maine, to Portland, Oregon, are moaning and of course, I am one of them, even though I was not on an airplane this holiday weekend.

But, Southwest Airlines tweeted on Wednesday that they were looking for some positive tweets for their passengers, and amazingly enough people seemed to be giving them just that:

"I LUV all the travel tweets coming in this morning! Let us know how we're doing on this busy travel day! Where are you headed today?"

In other airplane news, British comic actor Neil Morrissey reportedly made an ass of himself on a British Airways flight from Singapore to London Heathrow by going on a profanity-laced tirade while under the influence of alcohol.

And, according to "The Daily News," an English-language journal in Pakistan, the country's leading airline Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) was completely unprepared for the massive numbers of Muslim pilgrims travel on hajj to Mecca, as there were long delays in most flights from Saudi Arabia to Pakistan last week during the Muslim Eid Mubarak holiday. The journal reported that some 100,000 pilgrims were flying out of Jeddah back to major Pakistani cities, including Karachi and Lahore.

*-Albany is one of the many airports, a surprising number of which are in smaller markets, that has started using the full body scanners.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving/Black Friday from Howdy Doody

Gazooks! Gazooks! Gazooks!

As we were finishing up this entry about 45 minutes ago, my mom's whole computer abruptly crashed!

So, let's cut to the chase before anything else goes wrong!

I did want to mention that even though I'm not a vegetarian or vegan myself, that I thought it was interesting that WUNC-FM reported yesterday that the largest vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner in the nation is served in the Raleigh, NC, area.

This year, Dilip Barman put together two T'giving dinners: one at Cafe Parizade in Durham and another at Spice Street Restaurant in Durham. A total of some 800 folks come out for the gathering, and it sold out weeks in advance. The Triangle Vegan Society is in fact already taking reservations for next year!

I have to wonder if an evangelical like Rev. Chris Hazilip of Salisbury, NC (a real person) would venture to such an event, but since most vegans are very, very liberal and most revival preachers are EXTREMELY conservative, it might not go over well here in Purple Carolina.

Alas, our beloved Ragsdale Flying Tigers from Jamestown, NC, fell to arch rival High Point Central, the alma mater of Olympic speedskater Heather Richardson, by a 21-14 count last week. But, we wish them well next year.

Finally, NPR reported today that the Mister Kool Aid float made its debut at the Macy Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York today. I was only able to get a glimpse of the Hello Kitty float on tv; it made its debut in 2007.

Well, no crashes this time around, but of course, mom is not going to be too happy with me!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving Day Blog-a-Thon Starts with Shakespeare Quote

We start our crazy idea of having a Thanksgiving Day Blog-a-Thon (I sure hope my friends and fellow bloggers Moviezzz and Chris Knight have better things to do today; even if that means eating their grandma's green bean casserole!) with a quote from William Shakespeare:

"I say there is no darkness, but ignorance."

Since the holidays are upon us, many stage companies which perform Shakespeare productions are opting for Christmas plays, which Shakespeare didn't write (alas, our intern Javier went hope to visit family in Honduras this weekend, so we can't verify this!).

Hence, the Georgia Shakespeare Company in Atlanta is performing a stage version of the 1983 holiday cult film "A Christmas Story" from Dec. 7-26 (box office is 404-264-0020).

And, the North Carolina Shakespeare Festival in High Point will be performing Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" from Dec. 3-19.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Being Deliberately Trendy

Since Trending Topics is new trend in cyberspace these days, we thought we'd throw in some catch phrases which were Trending Topics on Twitter today. I should point out to my friends that as a 40-year-old man I don't wear high heels myself but I thought this image above (of a woman trying on high heels) might get your undivided attention.

So, here we go.........

I haven't asked my friend Moviezzz if he is planning to blog live during tonight's broadcast of the American Music Awards, which might well feature the likes of Nick Carter and NSYNC. But, perhaps, he will dish about the latest Survivor Series since he talks about tv shows on his blog. I only watch three shows on tv (not counting PBS) and those are "Outsourced," "Dexter" and "Mad Men." I like to watch tv on Sundays since there is nothing to do in High Point, NC (not actually where I live, but there is nothing to do on Sundays there either!) except go to Starbucks and watch trendy people. Perhaps, I will go to bed early tonight which would allow to catch up on my zzzzzs and perhaps indulge in a Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy with the latest contest from ANTM (America's Next Top Model, yeah, I didn't know what it meant either!).

Of course, all of this is pure nonsense that is being written merely to inflate my hits for the day, though the part about only watching three tv shows and hanging out at Starbucks to people watch on Sunday afternoons are actually true!

I was stunned to see that the terms 'full body scanners,' 'TSA' and 'pat-downs' were not trending on Twitter today. But, Jon Tyner of San Diego has used video footage of his negative experiences with the pat-down to recruit other passengers on the Internet who find the new measures objectionable.

"Saturday Night Live," which is not one of the three shows I watch on a semi-regular basis, reportedly had a hilarious skit with star Kristen Wiig (which is perhaps one reason why I should alternate with "Austin City Limits") about the TSA's new measures. It has become an Internet sensation according to ...well, the Internet.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Silly Photo to Fill Space: Macy's Garfield Float

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade starts Thanksgiving Day at 9:00 a.m.; I'll be watching on TV!

Quote of the Week: Lyndon B. Johnson

Former Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O'Connor will be speaking at the LBJ Museum and Library in Austin, Tex., on Nov. 30.

Here is a quip from the legendary prez:

"Any jackass can kick down a bard but it takes a good carpenter to build one."

Thursday, November 18, 2010

50 Beers Around the World- Hatuey Beer from Cuba

Today's entry in the 50 Beers Around the World Series comes from Cuba, where Fidel Castro is playing shuffleboard with Mitt Romney. Our beer for today is Hatuey Beer, which is actually available in Miami.

We learned from Wikipedia, that Hatuey Beer had a very good year in 1959, the year of the Cuban Revolution which feautred the Castro brothers and Che Guevara, when it sold 3.5 bottles.

While researching this piece, we were curious to see whatever happened to that far-right Cuban-American blog we used to check out from time to time.

We couldn't locate that exact blog, but we did find which actually calls liberalism 'a mental disorder' (hmmm....and the folks from the Miami Tea Party are sane?!) and it also features a political cartoon of Fidel Castro saying: "Yes, We Can." (he is meant to impersonating Barack Obama).

Today, we also found out about Pete the Cat by James Dean (an artist, not the actor). Apparently, he is popular at both the Robbins Gallery in New Orleans and the Mint Museum Gift Shop in Charlotte, NC. it is apparently one of these entities that is popular with kids and adults as well perhaps with Tea Partiers and those of us who are still into 'ObamaMania.'

Top Ten Places to Move to if Sarah Becomes Prez

My good friend Debbie Collins, a public librarian in Bethesda, Md., (pse- see other blog) has told me that if Sarah Palin becomes the next president, she will leave the country for The Land of Blue Frogs (Costa Rica).

I made a similar list in October on our other blog "The Daily Vampire," in which I named Iceland as my top choice, but Ms. Collins is inclined to go with warmer weather.

Interestingly enough, Mrs. Collins picked two Muslim countries in Morocco (she told me she's always wanted to go to Tangiers, the setting of William Burroughs's cult novel "Naked Lunch") and the United Arab Emirates (she said: "I hear there's lots of money in Dubai). She is not Muslim herself.

Two cold countries, Canada and Denmark, made her list, but she professed I was nuts for putting France on my top ten 'Escape from Sarah' list (it was number six on my list).

Canada was also one of three countries to make both of our lists, along with Argentina and Greece.

Here is her list, if you have one of your "Escape from Sarah" lists, email me at

1. Costa Rica

2. Greece

3. Brazil

4. South Africa

5. New Zealand

6. Argentina

7. Canada

8. Denmark

9. Morocco

10. United Arab Emirates

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Things We Learned on Twitter Today- Bakersfield Condors are Not Extinct

Does going to a minor league hockey game at 10:30 a.m. sound like a really cool thing to you? (or at least, a great way to get away from work!). Well, that is what happened today in Bakersfield, Calif., as the home team Bakersfield Condors beat the visiting Victoria Salmon Kings (love that name!) from British Columbia (western Canada) by a 3-1 score.

The game, which is-get this- between two EAST COAST HOCKEY LEAGUE teams (and we wonder why ninth graders are more hip with geography), was part of a Field Trip Day Game, and it did manage to lure 5,051 fans to the arena.

The Condors are the defending Pacific Division champions and this year, players from teams like the The Wheeling Nailers in Wheeling, WVa., will travel across the country to come play in the ECHL All-Star Game to be held early next year in Bakersfield.

We also learned that Defenseman Jason Lepine of the Condors leads the ECHL with assists from a defenseman with nine. And, the team's goalie Josh Tardjman (we have no idea if this is him pictured above) is serving a six-game suspension, but we have absolutely no idea why!

We also want to take this chance to bring in folks who would ordinarily never visit this blog and we thought there was no better way than to arbitrarily mention some of the trending topics on Twitter for today.

So, perhaps we can give yet more kudos to Prince William and Kate Middleton on their engagement. Congratulate Tony Parker on his split with some hot tv actress (we're just kidding).

Thinking of a good Christmas for your spolied brats, well how about a video game called Playing God, which will assuredly sell well at the Target stores in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And, lastly, everyone is talking about some movie called "Cowboys and Aliens." Yeah, we have no earthly idea what it's about either!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Silly Photo to Fill Space- Sock Monkey

It is getting proverbially close to that time of the year again, and we are not talking about exams (well, they will be here before Christmas).

My good friends Tom Angleberger and Cece Bell, a husband and wife children's book author team (though they do their own work; Cece writes the Sock Monkey series) are among those who look forward to this time of year in the hope that parents all over America will ignore the recession and buy lots of lots of books so they can add a chimney to their farmhouse in Boones Mill, Va. (not really where they live; in-joke!).

So, in their honor, we are posting this photo.

Cece Bell would probably want me to mention that her Sock Monkey series should not be confused with the adult comic strips/books by Tony Millionaire which also featues a Sock Monkey character, though his is considerably more demented!

At the Cat's Cradle- Southern Culture on the Skids

Southern Culture on the Skids, the Chapel Hill, NC-based band, which is one of our personal favorites, will be performing on home turf when they give a concert at Cat's Cradle in Carrboro, NC, on Dec. 4.

The wild band known for throwing fried chicken and Little Debbie oatmeal pies into audiences will be givint the concert as part of a benefit for the Carrboro Food Pantry. The band will also perform at the Hnadlebar in Greenville, SC, (on Nov. 17), the Visulite Theatre in Charlotte (Dec. 3) and The Soapbox in Wilmington, NC, (Dec. 17).

In other concert news, '80s pop diva gives a concert at The 9:30 Club in Washington, DC, on Nov. 27 at 6:00 p.m. (warning: tickets are $45?!), while the band Railroad Earth, which has a loyal following, plays the same venue on Dec. 10. And, one of our very favorite bands Gogol Bordello performs at The 9:30 Club for a pair of shows on Dec. 30 and Dec. 31.

And, in our hometown of Roanoke, Va., The Kirk Avenue Music Hall hosts Nashville-based rock singer Megan McCormick on Nov. 30 and the Athens, Ga.-based Beatles tribute band Abbey Road Live on Dec. 3. I saw ABL at Cat's Cradle earlier this year; they give an awesome show!

SIDEBAR: Kudos to Prince William as he is now engaged to Kate Middleton, who is also 28. According to the BBC, he proposed to her while the couple was on vacation in Kenya and he gave her Lady Diana's ring (awwww!).

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Quote of the Week- Franklin D. Roosevelt

The night is getting late kids, but we thought we'd leave you with this quote from Bill O'Reilly's favorite president (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) Franklin D. Roosevelt:

"A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has learned to walk forward."

The FDR Library in Hyde Park, NY, is currently holding a special exhibit to commemorate the 75th anniversary of social security.

On our other blog, we quipped Ronald Reagan. I remember once in the "Charleston Gazette" (Charleston, SC, newspaper) I saw a "Mallard Filmore" (right-wing comic strip with a duck by Bruce Tinsley) comic strip suggesting that Ronald Reagan replace FDR on the front of our dimes. That was almost enough to make me order a certain menu item from a Chinese restaurant!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

High School of the Week- Daniel Boone HS in Gray, Tennessee

We conclude our High School of the Week series today with a profile of Daniel Boone High School in Gray, Tennessee, near Johnson City, Tenn., where Eastern Tennessee State University is located.

The school nicknamed the Trailblazers won the 2010 Tennessee High School Women's Softball Championship in Murfreesboro; the team had a 41-9 record.

Daniel Boone HS has an enrollment of 1,300 students. The school principal is Roger Jackson. On Monday, the school serves a choice of a fresh deli sandwich (ham or turkey) or a turkey corn dog...........hmm?!

This reminds me an entry in the "Things We Learned on Twitter" today series we had here a few months ago about a San Francisco restaurant that was serving lobster corn dogs!

There is also a Daniel Boone HS in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania.

SIDEBAR: The BBC had a somber story about a zoo fire in Karlsrule, Germany, that killed 26 animals, including Shetland ponies, sheep, goats and a llama.

SIDEBAR TWO: On a lighter note, the satirical publication "The Onion" is 'reporting' that Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick is feeling confident enough to do something terrible again. Vick, as everyone probably knows, is a convicted felon who bred pit bulls for the sole purpose of raising them to engage in dog fighting. Vick is an alumnus of Virginia Tech which is playing a big ACC game on the road against UNC today, kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. eastern time. Paul the Octopus is apparently picking the Hokies (that is a joke!)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Things We Learned on Twitter Tonight- NC State Wins in College Basketball

Since I did not attend either the University of North Carolina or their rival North Carolina State, it's only fair that I cover the Wolfpack as well as the Tarheels on this blog. Of course, this will still irk alumni of Duke and Wake Forest!

I must profess with college football season is full-swing, it's hard to believe that college basketball season is getting underway as well. Of course, in places like Lawrence, Kansas, and Lexington, Kentucky, folks are fully aware of this.

Tonight, in Raleigh, NC, the NC State Wolfpack won a surprisingly competitive game with Tennessee Tech by an 82-69 count according to a tweet from WolfpackWire.

C.J. Leslie lead the Wolfpack with 21 points, and his teammate Scott Wood added 11 points to help NC State prevail.

Zac Swansey scored 13 points for the losing Golden Eagles.

The Wolfpack only lead 37-34 at halftime, and the Golden Eagles were winning the game early in the first half.

The Wolfpack's chief rival UNC (ranked #8) beat Lipscomb 80-66 in Chapel Hill tonight as well.

Silly Photo to Fill Space- UNC Mascot

For those of us who live on the North Carolina-Virginia border, the annual football game between the Virginia Tech Hokies, where my late father and sister went to school, and The University of North Carolina is perhaps more exciting than the in-state rivalries, especially since Wake Forest, Duke and The University of Virginia have weak football programs at the moment.

The game takes place on Saturday afternoon in Chapel Hill, and I know my friend Greensboro, NC, folk singer Bruce Piephoff will be rooting for his beloved Tarheels. We should also mention that Bruce is actually performing in Aberdeen,NC (not Southern Pines, NC, as we stated in our 'Easy Rider' entry yesterday; we are too lazy to make corrections) at The Rooster's Wife on Sunday at 6:30 p.m.

SIDEBAR: Our beloved Ragsdale Flying Tigers in Jamestown, NC, (not my alma mater) beat rival Glenn HS 49-21 to advance in the North Carolina state high school football playoffs tonight.

Other state scores are as follows:

High Point Central 28 Smith 22

Eastern Alamance 36 Rockingham County 10

Randleman 36 Reidsville 35

Carrboro 55 Whiteville 33

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Veteran's Day; I'm Hittin' the Road

Since today is Veteran's Day and I am hitting the road, we thought an image from the iconic 1969 American biker film "Easy Rider" (Peter Fonda is pictured here) was in order even though the film is not a war film and it politically expresses vehement opposition to the Vietnam War. But, hey the Democratic Party lost seats in Congress last week, so how much more damage can I do?!

In all seriousness, I want to take a minute to thank all veterans for their service.

And, if anyone residing anywhere near Southern Pines, NC, wants to celebrate Veteran's Day Weekend, I can't think of a better way than to see my good friend Bruce Piephoff, a Greensboro folk singer, perform down there at the Jefferson Inn on Sunday afternoon.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

50 Beers from Around the World_ Gallo (Guatemala)

Today, we focus our attention to the Central American nation of Guatemala, which is home to Gallo Beer (or Rooster Beer) as it would be in English.

The beer is brewed in Guatemala City, and beer in Guatemala dates back to 1896.

Gallo Beer is also served in aluminum cans, and it's also available as a light beer. The brew can be found in Mexico, France and here in The US of A. Though it seems a bit hard to find in les etats unis, but an Internet poster said he found the beer somewhere in San Francisco.

I had the chance to visit Guatemala in 2005, and I really liked the city of Antigua. Since we spent only a limited there on the tour, I was unable to get into Frida's (named after famed Mexican artist Frida Kahlo), a popular restaurant in Antigua located near the famous Arch of Santa Catalina.

Antigua is also home to a movie theatre called Cine Sin Ventura. If it's the same place (though I recall it as being called Cinema Maya; they were showing "Kinsey") that I stopped by and visited back then, I do have to wonder what they are showing right now. Yeah, I imagine it's either "Mega Mind" or "Due Date" too!

Quote of the Week- George W. Bush

Yes. I know since I am a fairly partisan Democrat who would proudly be considered a socialist in Provo, Utah, this might come as a suprise. But, everyone from NPR to perhaps the Turkish newspaper "Zaman" is talking about George W. Bush's new memoir "Decision Points," which sold 220,000 copies today_ its first day of release.

Bush makes no apologies for being a human rights violator as he said he firmly stands by his decision to use waterboarding on terrorist suspects at Gitmo (slang for the U.S. naval base in Cuba) even though the decision was even criticized by conservatives like Andrew Sullivan of "The Atlantic."

The memoir apparently illustrates other aspects of Bush's 'black and white' Chuch Norris movie view of the world which makes me wonder if the former president will stop by Cinema Overdrive in Raleigh, NC, which is screening Norris' 1984 film
"Missing in Action 2: The Beginning" at 8:00 p.m. tonight. (We heard about it thanks to a blurp in 'Independent Weekly' from their film critic Zack Smith).

Of course, Katrina vandan Heuvel of the liberal journal "The Nation" has publically stated that Dick Cheney was the real American president from 2001-2008, which we presume may not make her a welcome guest at the Bush Childhood Home in Midland, Tex.

But, irregardless of where you or I (or Chuck Norris and Katrina vandan Heuvel) stand politically, one has to admit that the Bush Childhood Home (which is actually open to the public) has a great event on Nov. 18. On that day, the museum/home is sponsoring the Laura Bush Literacy Program with readings fom 4:00-5:00 p.m.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

High School of the Week- Acadiana HS in Lafayette, Louisiana

Our High School of the Week is Acadiana High School in Lafayette, La., where Martha 'Nikki' Broussard is principal. The school of some 2,000 students, nicknamed the Wreckin' Rams, was (according to Wikipedia) an early political battleground for the debate over whethe evolution should taught in the classroom in the late 1980s. Louisana's current Republican governor Bobby Jindal has supported initiatives to teach creationism in the state's classrooms, which is also a point of contention for those who agree with the findings of Darwinism.

Virginia High School Football Roundup

My alma mater Glenvar High School from Salem, Va., The Highlanders, pulled an upset on the road as they beat our second favorite high school from southwest Virginia_ The Floyd County HS Buffaloes 21-20 thanks to a game-winning stop from senior linebacker Phillip Tarpley. Alas, the Buffs move on to the playoffs next week and our Highlanders will have to wait 'til next fall.

Here are some other scores from the Roanoke, Va., area:

Alleghany County 14 William Byrd 7
Northside 28 Staunton River 7
Radford 34 Giles County 25
Pulaski County 21 Salem 13
Christiansburg 38 Blacksburg21
Cave Spring 34 Hidden Valley 10

Special Quote of the Week- John F. Kennedy

"Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth."

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Things We Learned on Twitter Today- Former Guns N Roses Member Has a Beef

For those who grew up with Guns N Roses in the late 1980s, the band's anthem "Welcome to the Jungle" has a special place in our hearts.

But, Duff McKagan, a former member of the band, wrote in "Seattle Weekly" that he is not happy the song is now being played to rev up fans at Yankee Stadium.

Duff made his comments in a guest column for the journal, and he said while he is a huge sports fan, the song simply wasn't intended to be the equivalent of Queen's song "We Will Rock You."

SIDEBAR: Hooray for Duke University's hapless football team which beat Navy 34-31 for their first win of the year in Annapolis, Md., last weekend. This week, the BlueDevils host The University at noon on their home turf in Durham, NC.

My alma mater Glenvar High School in Salem, Va., goes on the road to the mountain hamlet of Floyd, Va., to face the Floyd County High School Buffalos. We wish the Highlanders luck, though personally I prefer the other school's mascot to our's!

SIDEBAR TWO: Our fellow liberal friend The Kansan, who is really from Kansas and a Kansas Jayhawks fan, tweeted today that: "One often hears the question: Do you have to politicize everything? The answer is of course yes!

On that note, we invite our readers to insert their favorite Sarah Palin joke in our comment section. I am deliberating as to which country I would move to if she becomes president in 2012. My top three choices are Norway, Costa Rica and Tunisia (we had to choose one Muslim to irk the Christian conservatives, though admitedly it would be quite hot in North Africa!).

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Post-Election Day Hangover


I recall one year when I was in college when my old high school pals Jake and Brett (not their real names) came over and we watched the Super Bowl between the New York Giants and the Buffalo Bills. The Giants won the game, but I will never forget the Jack Daniels hangover that my buds suffered. I was smart enough not to join them!

And, since my Twitter account is frozen up today, which I suspect is a result of following over 1,800 people, media outlets and organizations (yes, Paris Hilton is one of them) the day after a major election.

While Paris Hilton may not have won yesterday, the dubious choice that Kentuckians made in electing far, far right mad man Rand Paul (we actually like Ron Paul, his dad, but like George W. Bush this guy is crazier than his dad!) who according to "The Nation" even opposes abortion when a woman's life is in danger, may be just as fatal for the American political spectrum.

Closer to home, one of my friends (yes, the irony here kills me too) Republican Morgan Griffith from my hometown of Salem, Va., upset Cong. Rick Boucher, who was first elected to office when I was 12 years old in 1982! And, I was perhaps the only kid from East Salem Elementary School who watched the election results that night.

Boucher lost in part from a heavy turn-out in conserative parts of the ninth district, according to "The Roanoke Times," which we presume would include the truck-stop town of Wytheville.

"The Roanoke Times" also stated that Cong. Tom Periello, a first-term representative, who is actually younger than me at 36, lost to Robert Hurt, a conservative state senator from the town of Chatham, Va.

Chatham is in southside Virginia where local churches actually state to be wary of our friend Hot Stuff on a regular basis.

(That is Satan for those of who live in saner parts of the country/world; I am of course alluding to the Harvey Comics character that Perriello is too young to remember and Griffith might well be reading to his young children).

In my current state of residence, North Carolina, Congressional Democrats fared fairly well even though the state house fell to the hands of Satan (the Republicans) for the first time since 1898!

Cong. Brad Miller (D-NC) held off a Tea Party whacko named Bill Randall who like Clarence Thomas is African-American.

In an effort to somehow proclaim that the GOP is now the party of diversity, Fred Barnes of the conservative "The Weekly Standard" (We should mention that neo-con don Bill Kristol of that same publication actually sent me a friendly email during the Obama-McCain race which still shocks me to this day!; of course- it had nothing to do with politics) mentioned that two African-Americans won Congressional races yesterday.

They included Tim Scott of South Carolina and Allen West of Florida.

Hopefully, they will represent their constituents well. If not, the Democratic Party might want to find two fat, old white guys to run against them!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Silly Photo to Fill Space- Mushroom Cloud

With the impending doom upon us as the Republicans are set to take over Congress, a part of me wishes I had checked out the entire "Godfather" triology from the public library in Murphy, NC.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Quote of the Week-Clint Eastwood

Since many poltiical experts from "The Hill" and "The Washington Post" and perhaps even the very liberal "Mother Jones" are forecasting doom and gloom for us Democrats tomorrow (is there still a chance that we can get that open congressional seat in Boise, Idaho?!). we thought we'd show irony by quoting one of Hollywood's few conservatives Clint Eastwood.

Eastwood, 80, is still directing films and his latest one "Hereafter" with Matt Damon has garnered lots of critical acclaim. But Eastwood was actually chastisied by the pro-life crowd especially arch conservative film critic Michael Medved because of a certain plot twist in "Million Dollar Baby," a boxing film that gave Hillary Swank her second Oscar. (Eastwood won his second directing Oscar for "Million Dollar Baby." His first came from helming "Unforgiven.")

Here is the quote from Dirty Harry himself:

"I don't believe in pessimisim. If something doesn't come up the way you want, forge ahead. If you think it's going to rain, it will."

Hmmm.....does this mean I still might have a chance to go out with Jennifer Love Hewiit?!

Happy Belated Halloween

We were hoping to post this before Halloween, but well I was sick and the local libraries and coffee shops are closed on Sundays here in Mount Airy, NC (not really where I am at, though assuredly, everything is closed on Sunday there too!).

Casper the Friendly Ghost is actually a source of controversy amongst his fans as to whether he is the ghost of a dead child or if he is well just a ghost. There is an unsettling cartoon with Casper called "There's Good Boos Tonight," made in 1948, which hints that the former may be right, but we are not comic book historians (though I know folks who actually have that job title!).

Seymour Reit and Joe Oriolo brought "Casper to life." The character was first shown in a Paramont Studio cartoon before making his debut for Harvey Comics in 1945. And, there is that supposedly awful movie which came out a few years ago. I imagine my friend Moviezzz has seen it. Of course, that is just an assumption!