Who are the 11%ers

11% of the population feel Congress is doing a good job.  Isn’t that shocking?  Not that only 11% of the population approve of Congress’ performance, but that there is actually 11% out there who DO approve.  I mean really, people approve of Congress?   Now I know I’m not a mathematician, because my grades in math told me so,  but that breaks down to about 20 million people in the U.S. proclaim Congress is doing a fine job.  20 MILLION?  Are you kidding me?  To put that in further perspective,  about 1 million people went to the theaters to see that craptastic 2003 Ben Affleck-Jennifer Lopez flick, GIGLI.  If you are one of the 7 billion or so who haven’t seen it, trust me it’s horrendous.  But if you are one of those “trust-but-verify” types and want to watch it, go right ahead, but you’d be wasting less time peddling snow shovels in Miami.  Nonetheless, most people watched the trailer for that movie and collectively said “that’s gonna suck”, as they should have.  But after reading, hearing and watching news reports on congress’ performance, the 11%ers are acting like they just watched 50 Shades of Grey starring Mila Kunis and Bradley Cooper.

How on Earth can anyone look at Congress and go “good job, thumbs up, bravo!”?  I have not met a person who approves of the job they are doing.  No one seems to admit to giving Congress a high-five-chest-bump job approval.  I don’t know, maybe the media is just creating a mythical number so Congress isn’t getting their feelings hurt. Congressional politicians have feelings right?

There are 535 people in Congress, add about 10,000 family and friends of those Congress members and that makes 10,535.  That works out to like .0050% of registered voters.  These 10,535 get a free pass because they have to vote in support of Congress.  They are invested by association. They are like the parents who look at their kids art project, you know, the picture they drew of their family but only in this drawing one arm is twice as long as the other, and they have 14 fingers but only 7 toes, with oval eyes and orange faces.  They tell their kids “awesome work buddy” because they have too, why?  Because they are invested!  But what about everyone else?  After removing those people, that still leaves 11%.  We are still at roughly 20 million people.  Again who are they?  We need a Dateline-20/20-60 minutes-Sherlock Holmes-Nancy Drew investigation to find out who they are.

The great comedian George Carlin (R.I.P.) use to tell a joke about the definition of the word Congress.  Carlin’s definition was this,  CON means to take away, GRESS means to work together, therefore Congress is working together to take things away from us, the taxpayer.  But this Congress is doing so bad they can’t even agree on what to take from us.  At least when Congress was “working” I was at least paying for things I didn’t want.  Now I’m not paying for anything, I’m just paying.  And yes I’m being rhetorical.   I think we need Congressional refs to call penalties like in football.  I want refs throwing flags. Instead of holding, offsides, and false start we could have congressional (with)holding-information, political-flip-flopping and voting-before-the-full-bill-is-fully-disclosed.  If we had Congressional refs, C-SPAN might actually be interesting….maybe.

Finally, one of our earliest presidents, John Adams, once said, “One useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, three or more is congress”.  How sad is it, that this phrase is as accurate now, as apparently it was then.


LEGOS: a girl’s dad’s bff

imagesI have two little girls.  Being the Dad of two girls means I play many games with them.  I play the typical games you would think; softball, soccer, riding bikes, board games, getting mani-pedis by them, and being the guest of honor at tea parties, many tea parties.  During these tea parties I get to meet many stuffed animal/doll characters that you would expect to live on/in/under the bed of a young girl’s room.  I have sat next to Dora the Explorer, Mickey and Minnie Mouse, a rainbow striped dolphin, build-a-bears, Scooby-Doo and the gang, and of course several American Girl dolls.

They are all fine company, except Dora the Explorer.  Hate her.  Honestly Dora, I really don’t care about your stories and how everything you do involves going over a bridge and thru a forest.  I mean every story Dora?  Really?  I get it, got it, ok lets move on, but NOOOO you then have to talk about this Swiper animal-thingy that takes things from you.  Is Swiper really that scary?  All you do is tell Swiper “no swiping” and he leaves.  Really?  That’s it?  This guy is going to mug you and you just tell him no?  How out of touch.  Thanks for misleading my daughters into thinking they just have to say no and all will be sunshine and unicorns with gummy bears falling from the sky.

Besides that annoyingly happy Dora, I have as much fun as one can have eating plastic cake, trading stories with stuffed animals and drinking invisible brown orange juice.  Yes, that is correct, my youngest makes me invisible brown orange juice.  Oh believe me I tried ordering regular orange orange juice, but she says her’s only comes in brown.  Is this just some joke on Dad?  “Give him the “brown” orange juice, haha”.  I asked if there was anything else to drink and she replied in a somewhat irritated mobster voice “no, just the orange juice, and it only comes in brown”,  hmmm ooookay.  I informed her the health department would probably be visiting her tea party regarding her brown orange juice, she didn’t really seem to care and added that they aren’t invited anyway, so they wouldn’t get in.

So, like I said, I love playing these games, and cherish my V.I.P. status at these tea parties.  I would, however love to add some of my childhood destroy-everything boy mentality to these parties.  (I’m still a boy, an old one, but still a boy)  As a kid I grew up having spacemen fight WWII Army guys, had a fortress under my bed, and built Lincoln Log Bases where my League of Justice action figures could launch an attack against Darth Vader.  Like I said, I want to include some boyhood antics.  I would love to have GI JOE and anyone from Star Wars sit at the royal tea-table.  Tell your explorer stories now Dora, Yoda would destroy you like Miley Cyrus destroys foam fingers.

People are often asked if you could have dinner with three people who would it be?  Abraham Lincoln? Gandhi?  Mother Teresa?  For me it’s my childhood hero characters, Optimus Prime, Han Solo, and Chuck Norris.  If I can’t really have dinner with them, why can’t they be at the tea party?  I suggested it once but got shot down quicker than I did on prom night.  I get it, I do, I understand those toys are just not girly enough for my girls.  I thought I was always going to be regulated to mega-girly tea parties, that is until I discovered LEGO marketed to young girls, and inadvertently to Dads of young girls.  These LEGOS may not be manly-man LEGOS but I can make a manly-man Dora hunting robot with them, see I really do hate her.  My girls and I have common ground when it comes to LEGOS.  There are all sorts of LEGOS for girls; picnic LEGOS, princess spa LEGOS, animal refuge LEGOS, and no, all you femministas I’m not being sexist, I’m just saying.  They get to build dream houses with them while I get to build dream Space-Stations.

Ok so, they are made for girls, but I can still build what I want.  I can still create tanks, bunkers, planes, spaceships and more.  Who cares if they in the color of chartreuse, sea coral, saffron and of course valley-girl-pink.  Even though my Tank-O-Destruction is colored periwinkle blue with a touch persian rose and looks like it was on some sort of hybrid Pimp my Ride/Extreme Makeover show, it’s still a TANK.  A tank Barbie would be proud to chauffeur Kenneth in.

Not only do I get a break from ultra-girly tea parties with these LEGOS, they serve and even more important purpose.  They get my daughters involved in science and engineering.  They encourage them to build and create.  Sure they may build things only a father could love, like a roofless, doorless house in the color of saffron, but they still build.  They create, design, think.  Many girls start to leave science and math behind around grade 5 or so.  LEGOS keeps them interested in engineering, in math, in science.  It would be a disservice to not to build spaceships and princess castles with them, plus it’s a win-win-win.  They create, I re-live childhood, we play together.  Now I just need to get them to ditch Taylor Swift for The Black Keys or perhaps Bob Seger.

Truth-umptions: A Superpower

I have a gift, perhaps even a superpower.  I have the ability to “see” people.  Not like x-ray vision or an “I see dead people” type thing.  This power is much different and much more powerful.  I have the ability to “see” who they are.  Ok so here it is, I can “size” a person up in a short amount of time.  It usually happens in eye-blink nanosecond speed, but can take a full second or so to happen.

For example, I had someone cut me off in traffic the other day, and at that very moment I knew this person was an idiot.  BAM!  Just like that, it came to me.  I was even going to yell that at him, but then I thought, that would be dumb, he already knows he’s an idiot, why would I tell him something he already knows?  Dumb.  So I didn’t.  I just once again enjoyed the gift that was given me.  Another Recent example is when I was behind someone in line at the grocery store.  When they went to pay, the person incorrectly entered their debit pin, then decided to pay with a check but wrote the wrong amount, and had to write another check.  Clearly this person is an imbecile, a magnificent imbecile, a USDA Grade “A” imbecile.  Who else would do that except an imbecile?  Now I know what you are thinking, my superpower has laser like accuracy.  Exactly, incredible isn’t it?

Some people say I am being a jerk for making such truth-umptions about someone without spending more time with them.  Really? A jerk?  It’s a GIFT!  For some unknown reason I was chosen.  Maybe because of my superior intelligence, or maybe I won a raffle or something, either way, why should I or anyone else question such a gift?  My truth-umptions that is…..not my said ability of being a jerk.  I wish I could control it, again my gift, not my jerkness, I really do, but I can’t, and maybe I shouldn’t.  Did Superman hide the fact that he could fly?  Did Einstein hide his physics genius?  Did Chuck Norris hide his awesomeness?  Of course not, so why should I?

There are even other times when I didn’t even need to see, speak or listen to the person.  All I needed was for someone to simply tell me something about them, like a story, or repeat something they said.  Usually during this I will uncontrollably blurt something out like “What an idiot”  “how stupid”, “epic failure in life”.  Many times when I say these things people are aghast, and give me look of disbelief.  And I’m like “I know, I can’t believe it either”.  They say things like “you don’t know”, “You can’t assume that”  “You are mean”, ok I lie, they says those things in a more colorful way and with great flare.   But they just don’t undertand.  I didn’t ask to be burdened with this power to instantly expose the traits of others.

Sometimes I wonder if I have an equal out there.  Is there a person out there with the same great gift?  Now I have had imitators come to me and tell me I had faults.  But again they were just imitating my ability, I can’t possibly have any real faults.