Tea Time With Jesse

Six of One, Half Dozen the Other

Archive for January, 2014

Music Fridays – Chilled

Posted by middlerage on January 25, 2014

Is it just me or does the world seem to have blown up with the social consequences of social media? Folks are posting ill-considered thoughts or pics on a variety of platforms (mostly Twitter and FB), and getting hammered by outrage. It isn’t that what they post is not stupid, but I wonder if the backlash is disproportionate. Off the top of my head here is an abbreviated list: Julianne Hough (A Dancing with the Stars dancer) went to a Halloween party in black face to celebrate her favorite actress on Orange is the New Black; Steve Martin tweeted an unfortunate joke with racial overtones; and an episode of How I met Your Mother dressed up in “yellow face” to celebrate Kung Fu movies.  Social media erupted in all cases.

I’ve seen a cogent argument that this is no more than the Town Square of yesteryear. 150 years ago we weren’t connected by anything more than a wagon road and a close knit town, so if you were an ass, you got the “social consequences.” Since then we’ve been spoiled by relative anonymity and privacy, so this is nothing but a “rebalancing.” But I disagree – do we really want to go back to child labor, jim crow, and prohibition?  I maintain, 20th century anonymity is progress. I don’t wanna go back. Most frighteningly, these aren’t neo-nazis, these are reg’lar folks making a faux pas. (As an aside, the conclusion is that a Chinese-American’s daughter is disallowed from dressing up as her hero, Martin Luther King, Jr., because you are only allowed to celebrate heroes within your gender/racial make-up).

All of which is a long-winded way of saying I’ve felt chilled lately – free speech wise – when it comes to blogging. Am I gonna say something off the cuff, and come to regret it? I know, I know, my blog is read by an audience numbering in the ones, so you’re probably thinking I’m complaining above my pay grade. And I am. But I’ve felt shy nonetheless.

Lately I’ve run across the story of the Beastie Boys complaining about a girls’ toy company making fast and loose with one of their old songs. The song may be misogynist depending on your opinion, and the toy company made lemonade out of the lemon. The Beastie Boys, semi-agreed, and applauded the message, but not the messenger – “We’ve never allowed commercial entities to use our art” (to paraphrase). Social media slammed them as “douchebags” (which seems a bit misogynist to me. Why not “unwashed jockstraps?” Anyhoo…)

But I’m with the Beasties – all bets are off when you are selling something, no matter how “cool” the message.

Anyway, for Music Fridays, here is the original song, and the toy commercial, and an invitation for your comment. But if you don’t like what I said, please don’t put me in the stocks of the new town square.


Posted in observations, Politicks, Privacy Issues, Thinking 'bout music | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Peer Pressure

Posted by middlerage on January 10, 2014

So I have kvetched before about not really liking or being impressed by the annual flu shot: I’ve become terribly sick on years I got the shot, and had totally non-sick years when I missed the shot; Also it doesn’t confer a heck of a lot of immunity (something like 67%).

But this is where our friends show their importance. Switbo pointed out that even if you get the flu, your symptoms can be less severe if you’ve had the shot, and Mark L. is constantly haranguing folks to get the shot via his FB posts. The flu shot isn’t important to me, but it is important to my friends, and my friends are important to me. Thus I girded my loins for the idiotic bureaucracy and went to get my inoculation yesterday.

I am now contributing towards herd immunity.

As an aside, even though I am often a ‘big-guvmint lib’ral’ I have to give props to industry when they do something well. My former employer is a large, private health system. Every year, they have a continuously open flu shot clinic that you don’t need to do anything but drop by when convenient. Bam! Free shot, no waiting. Under the same organization, I’ve taken my kids in for special childrens’ shot clinics, and the nurses will always say, “Dad, while you’re here do you wanna…” Bam! free shot, no questions, no handwringing. If you want to promote herd immunity take away the hoops.

Conversely, my present employer is a large, public (read guv’mint) university. Getting the “free” shot was nothing but hoops. Inconvenient clinic locations and times, reams of paperwork, and minions checking the paper work, AND my photo ID AND my insurance card. Stupid and dumb, and DOES NOT promote herd immunity.  It’s almost worth giving the corner Walgreens $25 for the convenience.

Posted in observations | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Phrases I like – describing the cold

Posted by middlerage on January 7, 2014

Dang! It’s been too long since I added to the list of phrases I like. But this week’s record setting cold snap provides some incentive – to both mention a favorite phrase and to invite readers’ favorite expressions describing really cold weather.

So here’s my contribution: It’s colder ‘n a well-digger’s wallet

The ever expanding list:

Contributions from readers and the Phrases They like:

  • Harder’n a woodpecker’s lips
  • Real nice and Kentucky (from Mark L. and means something fits well, well made)
  • Like herding cats (from switbo)
  • Spat the Binky (Dummy) (from Annie)
  • Hottern’ two rats fucking in a wool sock (from the muddledrambler)
  • Gird your loins (from Mark C.)
  • Put your best foot forward (from Mark C, who actually dislikes this phrase, haha)
  • Grinnin’ like a fox eatin’ shit from a wire brush (from Mark L.)
  • This is a fine kettle of fish (from anonynurse)
  • Chile so hot it burns twice (from Fatman)

My contributions:

  • It’s colder than a well-digger’s wallet
  • Practice random acts of kindness and senseless beauty
  • S/He’s busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest
  • Got a bee in one’s bonnet
  • Don’t get your panties in a bunch/knickers in a twist
  • Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill
  • Too clever by half
  • I’ve got to go say hello to Earl on the big white telephone (for when youse gots to vomit)
  • I’ll be there with bells on!
  • Madder ‘n a wet hen
  • Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life
  • Beat like a red-headed step child
  • Bob’s your uncle
  • Like carrying coals to Newcastle
  • A real belt and suspenders guy
  • Truth is stranger than fiction
  • Peace through superior firepower
  • Shut your freakin’ piehole
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
  • Expect the worst, hope for the best
  • He’s so big he must go bear huntin’ with a switch
  • As big as your head
  • Better than a sharp poke in the eye
  • Piss or get off the pot
  • Tear him/her a new asshole
  • Put some mustard on it
  • Now you’re shittin’ in tall cotton
  • Raining to beat the band
  • Back-handed compliment (Damning with faint praise)
  • Hotter than a two dollar pistol
  • Brown as a berry

Posted in Phrases I like | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

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