Who wubba huh wubba woah…

April 17, 2008

We are all continuously bombarded by so much bad news that it is almost enough to make you decide to call it quits for a few weeks and just lock yourself in a dark room and not come out until you develop a few new personalities to hang out with… so today we take a look at some of the good (or at least funny) news circulating in the press.

First up:

Jonathan Lee Riches (a pretty sweet name, if I may say so) is an inmate locked up until 2012 in a federal prison. What does one do with all of that time? The answer seems almost obvious… sue Michael Vick. What is Mr. Riches beef with Michael Vick, you ask? He claims that Vick stole two pit bulls from his home in Florida, used them in dog fighting, then put them for sale on e-bay. After selling them, what was Vick going to do with his earnings? Riches claims he was going to use the proceeds to buy missiles from the Iranian government (it seems that there is a lot that we don’t know about Michael Vick). In the complaint, Riches says “Michael Vick has to stop physically hurting my feelings and dashing my hopes.” He is suing for $63 billion, “backed by silver and gold”. Right on, Jonathan Lee.

Next up:

Let me start off by saying that they don’t build ’em quite like they used to. Daniel Kuch really must have hated his job. Instead of quiting, calling in sick, or doing the good old no-call-no-show, Daniel had his buddy shoot him in the shoulder so that he could get a few days off. Apparently he was trying to avoid a drug test. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather go to work than get shot any day.

These may sound strange, but the web is full of stories of mis-guided people doing awesome stuff. You know you’ve finally made it when you turn up in Yahoo!’s odd news section.

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Nice Job, Glenn!

March 14, 2008

If you read this blog regularly, you have probably noticed a recurring theme: That I am ashamed of the lack of personal accountability shown by my fellow citizens of the United States.

Having said that, here is a really good article by Glenn Beck from “Headline News”:

http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/03/14/beckfloridamichigan/index.html

It is nicely written and makes some really excellent points… Nice Job, Glenn!


Honey, does the beer have its seatbelt on?

February 6, 2008

Here is another amazing (ridiculous, idiotic) story from today’s news…

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080206/ap_on_fe_st/odd_secured_beer;

_ylt=AjxtOIu87OXObX9xfZkdaJftiBIF

It seems that this lady has her priorities out of order.

If you didn’t read the story, here is a brief summary:

This lady got drunk, had to go for a “beer run”, and couldn’t leave her kid at home alone, so she hopped in the car and went for a drunken drive with her toddler. She arrived at the store, bought a 24 pack of Busch beer (yuck), strapped it into the passenger seat with a seatbelt (just in case), and left the toddler to run wild in the back seat for the drunken drive home.

She was pulled over by a deputy, wouldn’t take a breath test, and they found drug paraphernalia in her possession. She is now jailed with bail set at $31,000. When asked why the beer was buckled up and the kid wasn’t, at least she responded honestly: “I don’t know.”

So basically, she got hammered, went to get more beer, and decided that it was more important to strap in her 24 cans of Busch than her kid. I swear, I couldn’t make this crap up if I had to.

If you are making sure that your brewskis are buckled up, you might have a problem.


The Hidden Costs Behind Tornados

February 1, 2008

We all know that big corporations can be heartless, soulless, evil organizations, but this one is almost unbelievable… almost.

It seems that Time Warner Cable decided to bill a lady in Wisconsin $2000 for cable equipment (her cable box and accessories) damaged in a tornado that demolished (and I really mean demolished) her home a few weeks ago.

(full story here http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080201/ap_on_fe_st/odd_cable_bill_tornado;_ylt=AhYgbNQ56dJA56KnZvJcPF.s0NUE)

The lady called TWC to have the charge removed because a tornado leveled her home and she was informed by a manager that she would have to turn it in to her insurance company.

When asked what in the world they were thinking, TWC’s spokeswoman said it was a misunderstanding (I don’t know what you can misunderstand about “my house was leveled by a tornado”). Also, when asked whether anyone else had actually had to pay the charge, she replied that those in the area who didn’t mention the tornado were billed.

WOW. Can we say ‘unethical’?

Here is a company with a history of terrible customer service (almost legendary for their terrible customer service, actually) doing nothing to repair their image.

I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.


Tuesdays with Tyson – Jan. 29th, 2008

January 29, 2008

tyson2

It is time for another Tuesday with Tyson!

This week’s quote:

“I paid a worker at New York’s zoo to re-open it just for me and Robin (Mike’s wife). When we got to the gorilla cage there was 1 big silverback gorilla there just bullying all the other gorillas. They were all so powerful, but their eyes were like an innocent infant. I offered the attendant $10,000 to open the cage and let me smash that silverback’s snotbox! He declined.”

Yep, Mike is always looking out for the zoo animals that are getting bullied. What a guy!

Another quote, this time while speaking to a journalist:

“I want to throw down your kid and stomp on his testicles, and then you will know what it is like to experience waking up everyday as me. And only then will you feel my pain.”

Ouch… I’m not sure I want to feel his pain.

See you next week for more Tuesdays with Tyson!


Mars Bigfoot – Part 2

January 28, 2008

It seems there is some bad news for all of the ‘Mars Bigfoot’ fanatics out there…

NASA has released a statement saying that Mars Bigfoot is only two inches tall. Worse yet, it turns out that Mars Bigfoot is a rock. Who would have guessed that?

In any case, I am going to trust NASA and accept that Mars Bigfoot is only two inches tall. I am, however, going to provide an alternative to the ‘it is only a rock’ theory…

Perhaps Earth Bigfoot, clearly a descendant or cousin of Mars Bigfoot, is also only two inches tall. This would explain why the scientific community is having so much trouble finding him. Maybe he should be re-named ‘Little Bigfoot’ or ‘Big Littlefoot’ or something…

Just a thought.


The True Value of Diversity

January 28, 2008

What is diversity?

I am 25 years old, fairly young, probably still very naive, and I have lived my entire life in northern Ohio. Anyone from the area can tell you that Ohio is not exactly the capital of diversity in any sense, and if anyone tries to tell you that it is they are either very sheltered or they are fooling themselves. Having grown up in an area where everyone is essentially ‘like’ you, recognizing the value of diversity can be a very, very challenging task.

Upon starting my first ‘corporate’ job (working for a fortune 100 company) a couple of years ago, I was quickly put through a week-long ‘diversity training program’ that was supposed to be designed to help all employees recognize and appreciate the ‘value’ of a diverse workforce. After the first day of the training, I was pretty disappointed to find out that the ‘diversity training program’ was actually nothing more than a ‘try to tolerate your neighbors and don’t make fun of anyone at work’ training program.

I have to admit that prior to beginning my graduate degree last year I thought that I knew what diversity was and why it was important. While growing up, I had friends from other races and ethnic backgrounds… so I knew what diversity was, right? When I began my graduate program I saw that diversity is something entirely different…

Do we need to take another look at how we view diversity?

The standard method of teaching diversity in the U.S. has remained unchanged for quite some time, and I think that it may be time that we re-examine our methods.

In most elementary schools, children are first introduced to the concept of diversity by teaching them through various ‘holiday traditions exercises’… in other words, the first exposure to learning about the value of diversity that many American children receive is learning that diversity means ‘jewish kids celebrate Hanukkah’, or that ‘some african cultures celebrate Kwanzaa’, etc… as children continue into middle and high school, this approach changes to more of a ‘tolerance-based’ approach, essentially focusing on the idea that we all inhabit this earth together, and that we need to accept each other’s differences in order to get along… is this what diversity is? Does learning about diversity and cultural differences have no value other than tolerance? We seem to be telling our children (from a very young age) “Sure, we are all different, and it makes things tough… Get over it.”

More disturbingly, there is a strong movement in schools to eliminate these ‘holiday celebrations’ altogether. Although they are going about teaching diversity the wrong way, some mention of it is better than none. Numerous lawsuits have been brought forth in the past few years aimed at removing from classrooms any acknowledgment of the cultural differences that makes us all unique. Evidently, teaching children that their friends may celebrate other holidays because they belong to another religion is infringing upon their rights… Would they truly be better off by ignoring the fact that not everyone believes the same things they do? Evidently some socially conservative whack-jobs think so (and I must admit, I am fairly socially conservative when it comes to religion).

The Right Way to Teach Diversity

When I began my graduate studies, I was for the first time in my life surrounded by (and forced to work in close proximity with) people from numerous other cultures. In a matter of days, I went from having no concept of what diversity truly is to working face-to-face on a daily basis with people from India, Nepal, Croatia, Nigeria, Ghana, Vietnam, China, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, etc…

The experience of working with (and learning from) people from so many different cultures and backgrounds has been truly priceless. I have developed numerous technical and analytical skills and have had many experiences in my studies that will benefit me as my career progresses, but none of them compare to the insight I have gained from working and studying with the international students. It has become very apparent to me that the true value of understanding diversity is not the ability to be tolerant of those around you… the true value lies in the diversity itself and is a result of the various life experiences, outlooks, beliefs, and cultural differences that each member of society brings to the table. If we can learn to appreciate the value of each individual’s unique set of knowledge and beliefs, then tolerance will be a simple consequence of respecting and valuing the ideas and thoughts of others. Rather than teaching tolerance in our schools and workplaces, we should teach the concept that when we may not have the right answer to whatever problem we are facing, someone from a different background may have a unique and valuable perspective.