Points of Ponderation…..Episode 5.18

A semi-regular attempt to address some of life’s minutiae that might otherwise be overlooked…..





I don’t necessarily have a dog in the fight on this whole Roseanne Barr situation. I never watched the original incarnation of her sitcom, and wasn’t the least bit interested in the reboot. Her sense of humor just isn’t my cup o’ tea, and I was bemused by the support the new show received from my conservative friends. Roseanne Barr isn’t conservative…but of course I suppose the same thing can be said about President Trump, who has been all over the political map in his lifetime. I voted for Trump a) because I thought he was a better choice than Hillary Clinton, b) I’m all for “draining the swamp” and trying something new instead of the same ol’ out-of-touch politicians who aren’t the least bit interested in actually accomplishing anything meaningful, & c) I knew the hissy fit from the leftist elite in Hollywood, the media, & elsewhere would be delightfully entertaining. Having said all of that, it is undeniable that both manifestations of Roseanne were critically acclaimed & wildly popular, making ABC’s sudden decision to cancel based on a tweet from the titular star quite stunning. The cancellation doesn’t affect my life one way or another, but I am fascinated by the hypocrisy. Truly vile things are said daily on ABC’s daytime talk show The View, and that network’s own Jimmy Kimmel has been a huge contributor to making late night television unwatchable…but that’s okay because their politics toe the company line. In its statement about cancelling Roseanne ABC spouted off some kind of poppycock about her Twitter remarks not being consistent with their values. ABC & ESPN are both owned by Disney, and anyone who has been paying attention knows what those values are. The quick trigger finger displayed in this particular execution indicates that the powers-that-be were just looking for an excuse to cancel the show, just like the reasons given a year ago for axing Tim Allen’s conservative leaning sitcom Last Man Standing were weak at best. Another network probably won’t resuscitate Roseanne like they did Last Man Standing…especially since some of Roseanne Barr’s castmates have already thrown her under the bus…and I honestly couldn’t care less. I just think it’s sad that we’ve come to a point that everyone is so damn sensitive & phony.



Good information…..



What is the difference between a cookout, picnic, & barbeque?? Most of us use the terms interchangeably, but they do vary slightly. A picnic is a meal prepared or assembled in one place and enjoyed somewhere else…typically outdoors. Heck, sometimes one doesn’t even prepare the food themselves. Just hit the grocery store for some potato salad, baked beans, cole slaw, watermelon, & cold drinks, make a quick stop at KFC for a bucket of fried chicken, then head outside to your favorite spot…BOOM…picnic. Conversely, at a cookout the food is prepared on the spot and eaten right away. A cookout involves any kind of food that is cooked on a grill…burgers, hot dogs, chicken, veggies, steak, fish. It’s all good. A barbeque has a more narrow focus on food that is slow cooked…ribs, brisket, a whole pig or deer. At a picnic you’ll consume previously prepared chicken. At a cookout you might eat chicken breasts that have been grilled for 5 or 10 minutes. At a BBQ there’ll be a whole chicken that’s been smoked or roasted for hours.




Call it…validation…..

A couple of years ago I made a quiet promise to myself to refrain from sociopolitical “debates” on social media. It took me awhile to get the hang of it and for a time I still found myself engaging on occasion, with such “discussions” leaving me with nothing but elevated blood pressure & increased disdain for the human condition. However, this year I’ve been quite proud of myself, having passed on numerous opportunities to jump into the fray, and on the rare occasions when I do comment I keep my thoughts abbreviated & respectful. Last year…when I was still intermittently falling off the proverbial wagon…I “unfriended” & blocked someone who’d been a friend for over two decades. I realize that some may think of such an action as immature or silly, but for me it was a healthy choice. Unbeknownst to my old friend I unblocked him quite some time ago, and his privacy settings are such that I am able to lurk or troll. I recently ran across a lengthy thread on his page that confirmed to me that I had done the right thing. What this person does is purposely post inflammatory thoughts & opinions then sit back and enjoy the show. Inevitably there is atleast a person or two unable to stay within the lines of courteous & intelligent conversation, and that’s when the name calling, foul language, & even threats begin. And then my friend has the unmitigated gall to make a weak attempt at being the even-tempered, “can’t we all just get along” Voice of Reason. It’s a sick game that he’s been playing for years, deriving vile pleasure from all the attention he is receiving & the trouble he has stirred up, all the while trying to present himself as blameless & innocent. I look back at all the times that I fell into the trap, the instances when I was among those acting crazy & saying nasty things in the midst of the fray, and I am deeply ashamed. A person has the right to post what they want (within legal & decent parameters) on social media. That’s freedom of speech. That being said, others can choose if or how to react, and personally I have become more inclined to just keep scrolling. Your mileage may vary.



And that’s all I have to say about that.



Speaking of phony…..

I mentioned awhile back that I thought the “veracity of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movement(s)” were “almost mortally wounded” after a really stupid story about comedian Aziz Ansari. And now surely the death knell has to be sounded after a provably false accusation was made against legendary actor Morgan Freeman by an insipidly idiotic “reporter” on CNN. Here’s a tip ladies: if you’re going to slander someone…especially a person who is respected & revered by millions…you might want to make sure there aren’t any video cameras around. I’ve thought almost from the beginning that for every legit claim of “sexual misconduct” there were probably five more that were absolute nonsense, but of course most of the accusations have been from many years ago and had no witnesses one way or another, so far too many people fell into the trap of just believing the allegations of a “poor innocent victim”, and thus careers have been destroyed. Billy Joel once sang “she’ll carelessly cut you and laugh while you’re bleeding”, while Ricky Nelson crooned “she’d play around and tease me with her carefree devil eyes…she’d hold me close and kiss me but her heart was full of lies”. Men are finally getting fed up with the garbage being hurled at them by women. Pack a lunch ladies…it’s on like Donkey Kong!! I hope Freeman sues CNN into oblivion.








Points of Ponderation…..Episode 1.18

A semi-regular attempt to address some of life’s minutiae that might otherwise be overlooked…..





There’s a rather cynical maxim that states something to the effect that most people don’t care about your problems and some are glad that you have them. While I can’t relate to the idea of being happy about other peoples’ difficulties I completely appreciate the first half of the statement. On one hand I’d like to think that anyone I know would feel comfortable asking for assistance or advice about a legit issue, but on the other hand the older I get the less patience I have with those for whom complaining is a daily sport. Life is one continuous drama for such individuals, and while I am sympathetic to a point one has to draw the line somewhere. We all have bad days, but some folks need to reexamine their life and make more of an effort not to be such a Debbie Downer to those in their orbit.



The veracity of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movement(s) is almost mortally wounded after the recent accusations toward actor & comedian Aziz Ansari. I am only vaguely familiar with Ansari’s work, which includes being a member of the cast of NBC’s Parks and Recreation (which I never watched) a few years ago, as well as small roles in a handful of inconsequential movies. At any rate, Ansari was recently accused of “sexual misconduct” by a woman who willingly went to his place and “fooled around”, only to later claim that he didn’t pick up on her “non-verbal cues”. The woman did an interview for some magazine no one has ever heard of in which she said that during the date the two had drinks but “I didn’t get to choose and I prefer red, but it was white wine”, a statement that immediately makes one question the intelligence of the alleged victim and/or the writer. She says that he performed oral sex on her and she reciprocated, “but not for long…it was really quick”. She says that he kept asking her where she wanted him to…well, you know (I’m trying to keep this as family friendly as possible)…and she “found the question tough to answer because she says she didn’t want to at all”. And you know what?? Long story short…they didn’t have sex. He eventually got the message and even called the woman an Uber. Look, I’m not going to full on defend Aziz Ansari. He sounds like a 19 year old frat boy, but is in fact a 30-something man with a relatively successful career. Surely he should aim higher in his…recreational activities. That being said, he isn’t a mind reader. I don’t want to hear this “non-verbal cues” crap, especially when the woman actually gave him a Lewinsky. Back in the 80’s First Lady Nancy Reagan promoted “Just Say No” as an anti-drug program, but it works just as well when it comes to sex. What the alleged victim describes sounds like hundreds of drunken hook-ups that happen every weekend across the globe, and when she finally made it clear that she didn’t want to take things any further (it’s amazing how much easier it became to communicate when her mouth wasn’t full) he backed off. She apparently told him “you guys are all the same”, which would seem to indicate that this wasn’t her first rodeo. One article I read sums up the situation perfectly: “Assault is not a feeling. Discomfort is a feeling. Embarrassment, hurt, and anger are all feelings…but assault has to have an objective definition because of the legal and social ramifications that come with it. When we act as though disrespect, harassment, assault, and rape are all different words for the same thing, the conversation starts to lose its legitimacy.” Men can be horny creeps…no one is denying that. But when we start to lump in every circumstance where a guy was being a jackass & a woman did things but felt bad about them afterward together with actual rape & assault then we’ve crossed over to the wrong side of a slippery slope.













It doesn’t take much talent or effort to half-ass everything you do. One might not have the energy or inclination to go full throttle on some days, and that’s okay. However, as a general rule I believe in doing what needs to be done, doing it right the first time, & doing whatever it is to the best of your ability. There are those that talk a good game, that like to boast about how hard they work & how much they do for others, but the proof is in the pudding and the truth is that some of those people seem to talk a whole lot more than they work.



























The world can be divided along many lines…Democrats/Republicans, gay/straight, black/white, male/female…and one such distinction is TV People vs. Non-TV People. Nons like to act like they’re too cool, smart, & sophisticated for television. They are allegedly too busy with more meaningful pursuits and find nothing on “the idiot box” worthy of their valuable time and erudite brain cells. Conversely, TVPs are unabashed pop culture enthusiasts that set aside time to watch their favorite shows and make copious use of their DVRs when they can’t be home. Nons are totally oblivious about big events like season finales and naively call friends or visit neighbors just when that person’s show is on and a huge reveal is about to occur or a long simmering mystery is on the verge of being solved. TVPs engage in social media discussions about their favorite shows and know a slightly disturbing amount of trivia about actors, characters, & storylines. Nons don’t understand how TVPs can get so caught up in such frivolous entertainment that does nothing to help them improve their station in life, while TVPs are shocked to find out that Nons don’t even own a television and have never heard of many of the most popular sitcoms, police procedurals, or trashy soap operas. I don’t believe that either are bad people, and think that balance is important. Television is a perfectly valid source of entertainment, but look at it like an investment portfolio where putting all of your eggs into one basket is rarely a good idea. Develop varied interests. Pursue other hobbies. Read books. Listen to music. Go outside occasionally. If you’re a Non don’t be too judgmental of TVPs, and think about dropping a few bucks on a nice television. The world can be a pretty tough place sometimes. There’s nothing wrong with a little escapism. Laugh. Get caught up in a fictional story to the point that it stirs your emotions. Stimulate your imagination. It’s okay to loosen up & have some fun.