Monday, April 28, 2008

We All Know Tebow Rocks!

And he seems to be the kind of kid we all want ours to grow up to be.

Well spoken
And, goodlooking doesn't hurt!

My problem with this article, then, actually has nothing to do with Tim Tebow. My problem is two-fold.

#1. Don't the Florida legislators have anything better to do?

#2. Why don't we brag a little more about how lousy our public school system is?
The Senate awarded him the Medallion of Excellence for his achievements off the
field, the highest honor given by the chamber.
He was also honored with a resolution in the House and threw several passes to Speaker Marco Rubio, R-West Miami.
Tebow, who was home-schooled for 12 years before college, has a 3.77
grade point average at Florida. He spent his spring break visiting orphans and
sick children in the Philippines, where his parents are missionaries.
"There are a lot of role models in football, but there are not a lot of good ones,"
Tebow said. "People might not think they're a role model, but there are always
people watching."
"We are a nation in need of character and in need of doing the right thing," the 20-year-old athlete told state senators while several young fans wearing Gators colors waved from the gallery.

He speaks the truth, but I am uncomfortable with the fact that people treat him like a god. He is still a 20 year old junior in college. Not the Second Coming.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Birthday News!

Well, my birthday was awesome. Probably the best I have had in a while, just because we were AWAY! Even two days in a dinky, cheap hotel is pleasant when a person does nothing except relax. We, fortunately, managed to upgrade from dinky to really nice.

We spent the weekend relaxing and gambling. We paid for the hotel and gas, but managed to gamble for many hours, eat and drink and came home $50 up from the amount we took with us. Can't complain at all!

If this year is as great as this birthday... WOW!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Spreading Hate

I heard this story on the way to work this morning. I can't get YouTube at work, so I googled the information and found links on other sites. Both of these videos are disturbing and probably should not be watch with children around.

I don't know why anyone would create a video just to breed hate. I don't feel that Saeed's video was done for that purpose. He explains in it that he is making a point. He says in the story that he has nothing against Christianity. I respect and appreciate what he created and why.

But you decide.

This version of Fitna locked up on me after about 11 minutes. If you can get YouTube, you can probably watch the entire thing.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

More Birthday Wishes

Today is my dad's birthday. Get ready for more. Apparently we are real fertile in the summer and late November, because most of my family has spring and August birthdays!

Hope your day is wonderful Dad.
I love you! - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

B- *Updated*

Woo Hoo!

After much fussing from his mother (yea, that's me!) my son managed to pull a B- on his research paper. I just received a text message from him thanking me for my help on the research part. He wrote the whole thing; I just did minor editing and that is completely acceptable.

Crap. What if it is an April Fool's Day joke?
I may well kill him.

**It was not an April Fool's Day joke. He really did get a B-**

The Unsympathetic Me Part II

Hmmmm, where was I?

Oh, yes, the banks are losing their shorts. They have loaned money, in good faith, to people and are now stuck with houses and no money. They are not paying off the money they borrowed and no one is buying the houses they have foreclosed on.

Lower the prices, you losers.

My parents are not homeowners at this time. They sold the house I grew up in 1991 because my father had lost his job and was working for minimum wage and my mom's hours had been cut to almost nothing and they were afraid they would not be able to make the payments for much longer. They've played gypsy since then, working in a lot of places that provide housing (their current gig is on-site managers of a storage property). This has worked well for them, allowing them to stuff money in the bank like crazy. Now, they are nearing retirment and would like to find a nice house to buy. While, like me, they have no burning desire to own, they are afraid that a catastrophic illness will wipe out their savings. It would be safe if invested in a home.

My father surfs the 'net for leads on houses for sale in his price range. There aren't a lot, because while they have been saving, real estate prices have lost their mind. So, he looks at foreclosures. And, he has put bids in on several. Bids that always get rejected, because he is only willing to pay what he can afford. But here is the kicker. It is easy to see how much a person borrowed against their home and when. Sometimes you can find out how much they owed when the foreclosure took place. So my dad bids what was owing on the house + $5000. He gets a good price, the bank is paid off. Everyone wins.

The banks don't seem to be too concerned about getting paid off. They want a nice, healthy profit. Recently there was a foreclosure that $86,000 was owed on. Dad bid $92,000. The bank wants $135,000. Is the house worth $135,000? A house is only worth what someone is willing to pay and it is still on the market. The bank is losing money every day.

And I feel no sympathy for them.

Maybe I am wrong. Maybe I am just cold and unfeeling. Maybe I would feel differently if it were me. But I do believe that we, as a country, have lost any ability to take care of our responsibilites. It is always someone else's fault. And until we start taking responsibility for our own actions, everyone loses.

The Unsympathetic Me Part I

I have a confession to make. It makes me sound (and somewhat feel) like someone with no compassion and no empathy for my fellow man and woman. Like, maybe, I should register as a Republican. I try to dig deep down to pull out a smidgeon of sympathy, but it just isn't there.

I don't feel too terribly bad for some of the people who have lost their houses and I am not sure the government should bail them out. Nor do I feel horrible for a lot of the banks who are losing their shorts. *

There, I said it.

Now, let me clarify.

I feel horrible for the children. I feel rotten for those who have lost their jobs and have had no success finding another one and have, due to this, lost their homes. I feel sick inside for those who have fallen ill, can't work and have lost everything due to illness or accident.

I don't feel a bit bad for those who bought houses they could not afford. Who financed with an ARM without doing the research and whose payments have now gone through the roof. Who KNEW they were getting behind on the payments, put the house on the market and then refused to sell for a resonable price. Or, as one person I know personally did, refused to pay a realtor, tried doing a For Sale by Owner, and lost the house because no one came to look at it.

While homeownership has never been my dream when I decided it was time to buy, I did my research. I talked to other homeowners, I contacted a realtor, I read articles online, I prequalified for a mortgage. Yes, and then I looked at my income and realized I could never make the payments if I bought a house that cost that much. So, I sat down with a calculator and pen and paper and worked out a budget: how much mortgage payment, closing costs, moving expenses, utility change expenses, etc. It was, of course, more than I had anticipated and I managed to leave almost nothing in my emergency account, but I could make my payments with money left over to put back in my emergency account at the end of the month. And this was before the proliferation of "calculators" on the 'net that allows you to see almost to the penny what your mortgage payments will be.

My house is not fancy. It is actually quite small by some standards. 3BR/2BA 1400 square feet. The bedrooms are tiny, but the living room and kitchen/dining room combo are a great size, for the family, for entertaining. I would have liked 2000 sq ft. I would have like a den, an office, a guest room and a separate formal dining room, but I could not afford that house. I bought what I could afford.

Now people all across this country are crying the blues because they can't make their mortgage payments and they are being evicted from their homes. People all across this country are crying for help from the national government. And I do not have a bit of sympathy for them and I do not think it is the government's job to use my tax dollars to bail out homeowners living in my dream house who can not afford it anymore than I can.

*See next post for the continuation of this rant.

Is John McCain Sane?

I read this Newsweek article about John McCain yesterday, because I realize I don't know that much about him. Maybe I don't need to, because I am not voting for him, but there is always the possibility that he will win in November. (Please, please, please NO!) I don't know that I learned a lot, but it reminded me of something that has been bothering me for some time, John McCain's sanity.

I do not want to come across as rude, insensitve, or hateful (which I can be at times), but I just don't know a very tactful, compassionate way to ask a question that I have not seen answered.

Did McCain get psychiatric and/or psychological help after he was held as a POW for 6 years? And, if not, exactly how sane is he?

Maybe the information is out there and I have just haven't found it. Maybe people believe that it is none of my business, but I would have to argue about that. He is running to be President of my country, and if Presidential candidates are required to release their tax returns, I think McCain should be required to release his medical records.

While the fact that he is 72 and has had health problems is a concern for me, it is more of a concern that he was a POW for 6 years. While there are many people who could survive a war experience without necessarily coming home with PTSD, how could a person survive 6 years in captivity without some mental stress? Is that possible? I am definitely not a shrink or a doctor, but I am a concerned citizen and this concerns me. Just as the fact that no one else is asking this question concerns me. John McCain is (and should be) very proud of his military service and the fact that he survived those 6 hellish years. This is mentioned on numerous occassions, in varying articles, but (again, as far as I know) he has never spoken on the transition from soldier to POW back to soldier and then to civilian life. And I think the American people need to know.

Am I the only one asking this question?