Archive for September, 2015

Today’s douchestick not only takes up two parking spots, at least one of them is for the handicapped! Well done jackass!

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Holy Mother of God. The end is nigh.

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I know, I know, that sounds like a really simple question but I’m dead serious kidoutsideso shut it. And I also know that this may sound a bit disingenuous coming from me, who has been accused of being on the internet too much. Still, it’s something I think about a lot.

Probably too much.

You know, sometimes I miss the days when you could leave for Columbus with the knowledge that nobody could contact you until you came back home. Heck, I remember buying my first answering machine and that little thrill of excitement you’d get when you’d arrive home and see that little light flashing. Woohoo! I’ve got a message!

And to think it was only the beginning . . .

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of technology as I see them. Afterwards I’d love to hear your opinions on the subject.

PROS

Information

  • Der. Of course. I read somewhere once that kids have access to more information by 3rd Grade than we did in our entire school careers, so there’s that. I guess that’s good, right? Right?

Sharing of Ideas

  • At our fingertips we can gain instant access to almost anyone in the world, share ideas and information, the sky’s the limit. As you’ll read below, though, that may not be as great as it sounds.

Social Networking

  • This one is debatable and can go under either pro or con. Sure, the internet is an easy way to meet people. On the other hand, the internet is an easy way to meet people. You know exactly what I’m talkin’ ’bout.

Convenience When Traveling

  • Can’t argue with this one. Who remembers trying to read a giant map while driving down a back road somewhere in Tennessee? Then trying unsuccessfully to fold the damn thing back up? Yep, GPS does come in handy.

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Entertainment

  • Sure, we can now watch movies or TV shows and other stuff on our phones from anywhere we choose. Hey, I see people gazing at their cell phones while driving every day! And yes, the internet has done wonders for the porn industry. Yay?

Hospitals and Health

  • I guess you can’t put a price on the many ways technology has helped the health industry. Incalculable really. In fact this may trump them all. Then again . . .

Let’s get to the negatives:

CONS

Decline of Social Skills

  • As a teacher with 30-years experience I have a unique insight into this, and I can tell you without a doubt that there’s a direct correlation between the decline in the social skills of students and the rise of the internet. Sadly, a lot of kids have a real problem simply looking people in the eye these days. Too much texting and messaging and not enough actual physical interaction in my opinion. For years I’ve actually had to stop kids in the hallway and force them to interact with me, even for just a minute. Just fighting the good fight, people.

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Unique Thought

  • Remember when I mentioned sharing ideas as a pro but said it might also be a con? Well, many think the internet poses a threat to the human mind’s creativity and the ability to innovate. It makes sense in that if everyone can communicate directly with each other, and we have no pockets of original thought, creativity could suffer. I mean, since we can all converse immediately with each other will we all end up thinking the same way? Makes sense, right? On a related note, if you read the Unabomber’s Manifesto* he basically says the same thing. He made a lot of sense right up to the, you know, part where he started killing people.

*Honestly, you should read it. It’s actually very interesting.

Art

  • What kid draws or paints anymore? The answer is not nearly as many as when I was a kid, and that’s da truth. Why create a birthday card for mom when you can print one off the computer? See? We’re back to the death of creativity again. Damn it technology!

Instant Gratification

  • Because everything today is at our fingertips, we now want instant gratification in every walk of life. Nobody wants to earn anything anymore, ya know? We want it and we want it now. I blame technology. It’s softened us up, man.

Honorable Mention in the “con” department:

Penmanship

  • Long story short, it’s gone to hell. Don’t believe me? Look at the way people wrote in the 1800’s and compare it to today. Yes, kids, people wrote like that.

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Exercise

  • Take a look out your window. See any kids out there playing? Didn’t think so. Hey, you know how I used to tell where all the fun was taking place? I’d look for the bicycles laying in the yard. Sadly, the days of neighborhood kids playing together outside are largely gone, folks. They’re all looking at their phones or laptops.

Privacy

  • Here’s just one example. You ever notice how after you “like” a post on Facebook about, oh, let’s say macaroni, you suddenly begin getting ads for macaroni all up in your grillmix? It’s frightening, really.

And hey, I haven’t even mentioned the loss of jobs that technology has created.

So what do  you think? Am I being a fuddy-duddy to believe that the negatives outweigh the positives where technology is concerned? Listen, don’t get me wrong, I know there’s no going back, only forward. But I can still long for a simpler time, can’t I?

Thoughts?

Note: Here are some technology facts, for your perusal:

  • Over 90% of all adults have their mobile phone within arms reach of them at all times.
  • Out of the population of 7 billion people on the entire world, 4 billion of them have mobile phones.
  • The very first personally computer was released in 1950 and sold for $300.00.
  • Over a million new domain names are registered every single month.
  • Google search engines answer over 1 billion searches every single day.
  • The first computer mouse was invented in 1963 and was made of a wooden shell with two metal wheels. True story.

Check out the Glowworms, man, just glowing all up that cave like a boss. Glowworms are actually gnat larvae which emit their bright light for various reasons. While some of them glow to warn potential predators that they are mildly toxic, others do it to attract prey, which then gets caught in their silky strand that allows them to hang from cave walls. Diabolical. Oh, and some just do it to show off. The most famous place to find these “worms” in all their glory is the magical Waitomo Glowworm Cave in New Zealand, which is pictured below. Magical indeed. Anywho, Glowworms.

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Remembering 1995

Posted: September 30, 2015 in History
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The opening to this video will make you smile.

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Wish all of my players had that focus.

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USA! USA! USA!

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robber1New York Daily News: A couple bragged about their Aug. 24, Asheville, Ohio bank robbery by posting pictures on social media with the wads of cash they took from the bank tellers.

Police were helped in their investigation by the clear images showing John Mogan and Ashley Duboe hamming it up with their fortune in greenbacks. Four days after the robbery they began posting photos of their loot.

Mogan and Duboe were arrested this week for the robbery. Police say they gave a note to the teller in the Asheville bank, and walked out with a tall stack of bills. He looks nervous on the surveillance video, but in the days after the heist, they both looked gleeful on their Facebook postings.robber3

Apparently, Morgan had just gotten out of state prison for an earlier bank robbery. He put on make-up to disguise his face and neck tattoos. 

Weird, they look like such wholesome kids.

John Mogan, I guess you can disguise your face and neck tattoos but nothing can disguise your stupidity, huh? And apparently you can’t read or you would probably be aware that money is pretty filthy. And listen closely – the idea is to spend money, not eat it. Here’s a thought – spend it on food!

robber2Anyway, Ashley Duboe, looks like you picked a real winner here with old John. But hey, it’s an understandable mistake. I mean, the guy looks like a Harvard grad, I can’t fault you for misjudging him. Remember Ash, you can’t judge a book by its cover.

Sweet Mother of God, how I weep for our future.

 

Ilir Emini is a 5-foot-9 senior wide receiver for Division III’s Knox College Prairie Fire. Aside from this amazing catch, two things stand out to me. Number one, Ilir Emini is a spectacular name. Number two, “Prairie Fire” may be the greatest college nickname of all-time.

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Remembering 1993

Posted: September 29, 2015 in History
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Whooomp! There it is.

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Everyone knows about my aversion to peacocks. That said, they are pretty, aren’t they? Still, they eat by foraging for berries and grains but they also prey on snakes, lizards, and small rodents. Peacocks are badass, kids. Anywho, Indian Peacock.

I really need to get to Europe.

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Interesting.

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Just a great, great song.

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Call the authorities!

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I have no idea how this works. Must be magic.

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Never doesn’t work.

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It was my first year as Athletic Director, and I really wanted to get my tenure fencecrown1off to a good start. Because of this I thought I’d do a little something for the old-time Bearcat fans, a little nod to the long-time, hardcore folks who’d stuck with us through thick and thin.

I knew the old school fans always congregated at the fence between the concession stand and the bleachers. Here stood the brotherhood, the former players and men who had supported the team since the 1960’s. What could I do to honor them? What possible action could I take that would be a nod to them, a tip of the hat to the true fans?

Then it hit me. I had an epiphany. Since they leaned against a chain link fence, I decide to make them more comfortable. I’d add some of that plastic, corrugated plastic tubing to the top of fence. It would not only look good, it would be much more comfortable on which to rest your arms as you watch the game.

Brilliant! They’d love it. My stint as Athletic Director would be off the a rousing start.

And so it came to be. The tubing was put into place, it looked great, and I anxiously awaited the reaction of the True Bearcat Fans.

So as I stood by the concession stand, I watched as the first old-timer approached the fence. What would he say? How would he react? Maybe a warm smile, a knowing nod as he realized somebody finally appreciated his support of the Cats?

I could only imagine the adulation that was about to be bestowed upon me.

Then this happened.

As the old Bearcat approached the fence, he stopped, looked, and uttered this immortal, unforgettable statement:

“Where the hell am I gonna hang my coat?”

Well, hell.

At that moment and forever onward I realized you can never, ever, please everyone, no matter how hard you may try.

But hey, it’s the thought that counts, right?

Remembering 1992

Posted: September 28, 2015 in History
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Fun fact: In “White Men Can’t Jump” neither Woody Harrelson or Wesley Snipes could play a lick. Just turrible.

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Mandarin Dragonets are beautiful, aren’t they? They look like something an artist painted. No wonder that dude below is smiling. These guys are notoriously tough to have as pets though, because they’re such picky eaters. And get this – the Mandarin Dragonet has no known predators, probably because they’re so pretty nobody wants to eat them. Anywho, Mandarin Dragonet.

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Gorgeous.

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I’m craving Doritos for some reason.

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MERCER ISLAND, Wash. (KCPQ) — Kids at the Mercer Island School Districtbrother sister chase game medium are now banned from playing the popular childhood game of tag on the playground.

Parents KCPQ News they had no idea about the ban until their kids told them. Now, moms and dads are asking why they weren’t part of the decision-making process.

“Good grief, our kids need some unstructured playtime,” said mom Kelsey Joyce.

It’s a game that practically everyone has played – but if you go to public school on Mercer Island, keep your hands to yourself.

The signs outside one elementary school encourage kids to join league sports teams – but playing tag on the playground is no longer allowed during recess.

Mercer Island School District communications director Mary Grady explained the district’s decision via email:

“The Mercer Island School District and school teams have recently revisited expectations for student behavior to address student safety. This means while at play, especially during recess and unstructured time, students are expected to keep their hands to themselves. The rationale behind this is to ensure the physical and emotional safety of all students.

And so it continues.

Nice job, Mercer Island School District. You must be really proud of yourself. You’ve banned the game of Tag, quite possibly the second greatest game known to children (after Dodgeball of course).

Let’s see. So now we’ve banned Tag, Dodgeball, War, Monkey Bars, Father’s and Mother’s Day cards (out of respect for students without a mom or dad!), Flaming Hot Cheetos, and heaven help us all, HUGS.

What do we ban next, smiles?

Hell, one school even banned the dictionary because kids were looking up inappropriate words. Good God, people.

True story. About 6-7 years ago I was teaching Phys Ed when one of our douchestick administrators walked by. As he did, a little kindergartner happened to be giving me a hug. Later I saw the same assclown guy in the hallway and the following conversation took place:

“You know Dave, you really need to be careful letting kids hug you.”

“Really? Why?”

“Because it could be misinterpreted.”

“Misinterpreted as what?”

“Well, you know.”

“No, I don’t know. In addition, the day I’m not allowed to let kids hug me is the day I leave education.”

At that point he just stared blankly at me. But then I swear he said this:

“And there’s also the lice thing.”

Then I just turned and walked away. Why? Because I was talking to a moron.

Remembering 1991

Posted: September 26, 2015 in History
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“A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.”

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Sparky wants to ride the Dog Train, and he wants to ride it now.

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