My Coffee loves my Coaster

This is a shill post but purely innocent, I profess.

This morning, I woke up a tad late. Due to my uncanny sleep pattern last night, I decided to blow it off and watch a cheesy, very late night, movie called “Angels and Insects”. I prefer not to link to this strange 1800’s set movie as it is not worth looking up. But I regress.

I was awaken by my son at around 1030am, brushing my hair with his hand. Cute, yes…but certainly didn’t help me continue the restful sleep I was enduring. So I got up. I fired up my new/used Rancilio Silvia, the new love of my life, and began the hardy but well-worth process of making myself a heavy two-shot cappuccino.

After the froth and pour, and a scoop of sugar…yes real sugar, not that pansy fake crap, I strolled to my computer and sat my tired ass down. As I did this, still apparently half asleep, I had a little spill on my desk. Instead of getting my tired ass up, Icalled out to my husband to grab me a paper towel and a coaster. He brought me one of my favorites…and so the shilling shall begin!

My parents have owned businesses all their life…or..all my life. Some good, some not so good but all had their heart and soul. In the last 6 years or so, my Mother began selling old 45’s. Some of you should know what I’m talking about but most may not. Old records. Small, ancient relics of our music history, which became quite popular in the 1940’s and 50’s. I know our technology moves fast but most, I’m sure, grew up with a record player in the house. It always had that small round insert sitting in it’s bevelled spot, always ready for a 45rpm to be played. I’m sure there is a technical name for that round plastic thingy majig but I’m too lazy to look it up! Nevertheless, these little vinyl round records of #1 hits and one-hit wonders had become my Mom’s new obsession. It’s not as easy as just selling them, they have to be rated. Some are worth hundreds, some a couple of cents. And unfortunately, as many other things in our lives, some were not taken care of  and were considered unsellable.

After a couple of years of trashing vinyl, my parents came up with their most brilliant idea. They stopped throwing them away and began a very long process of figuring out how to make the perfect coaster out of our favorite hits.

This started the craft show party train. I was lucky enough to have just moved back from Germany to see some of their first shows and it was a sight to behold! Radio Stations are a joke these days and I admit I rarely listen to them. Because of this and the lack of really great hits each station genre plays…we forget what memories were created around our favorite songs. My Mom and Dad have tapped in to the millions of memories hidden in our hearts and souls. Customers would stroll by, not taking a second glance and the day would start out depressing. Then it would happen. Someone would take a chance on my parents “Rock and Roll Coaster” booth.

They would act uninterested, walking around aimlessly in the 10X10 space until something would catch their eye. Maybe it was the label design, maybe it’s the genre, band or song but they would stop, pick it up and you could see their mind backtracking to a memory. They would say, “I remember this song.” My Mom, who can sell ice to an eskimo, would say something like, “Oh, such a great song!” and either would tell a short story of the song and band or would start singing it. Brilliant to say the least! This attracts more customers and my parents begin a journey down someone elses memory lane. It’s fantastic to watch because everyone loves to hear themselves speak and everyone wants to tell their own story. It’s a domino effect and before you know it, they have 4, 6, even 10 coasters balancing in their hands. I, myself, am purely guilty of this. I have 8 coasters. Some I bought because the label is so freaking cool and others because I love the song or band.

This morn, I was blessed with “Good Morning Starshine”  from the original movie soundtrack of “Hair” from 1979. A movie my parents of the 60’s allowed me to grow up with. It is one of my favorite songs from the movie:

And here is my coaster with my half drunken cup of coffee….

Isn’t it sweet? Everyone who visits my humble abode always notices them and of course I begin the tale of how my parents came about selling these precious gems.

They have a website, they sell on etsy and I got them a blog here on good ole’ wordpress, 45Revolution’s. I’ll link to “The Needles” which is the about them page and which I have written. Yes, I’ll shill my writing skills because if I do say so myself, it’s some of my best work!

I invite you to look and preferrably buy because, hey, let’s face it….we’re all broke right now but birthday’s are still happening, Mom and Pop days will still come this year and before we know it, good ole break the bank Christmas will be here. They are cheap, but memory jilting priceless!

I need a Doctor not Medicare.

There are many things in the final Health Care bill I could rant and rave about. I’m no fan and feel this 2300 and some page bill should be burned in a fire. So, I shall choose a couple of items within this amended turd to hover over.

Medicare. This bill will expand your lack of Healthcare to more lack of healthcare. Good luck finding a doctor that accepts medicare. If you do find one, a good percentage of you will be traveling  long distance to get your 30 minute appointment. This also puts more burden on the states and guess where the shit rolls? Down to you, dear community neighbors. This may not be Universal Healthcare but we’ll all be paying for it no matter what. The states are going bankrupt. Some of you are owed money by the state and won’t see it. I can guarantee if you owed money to them, you’d be getting that nastygram in the mail a day late of your due time. I imagine it won’t just be in your paycheck you’ll see the hike. Sinful food would cost more, gas, sales tax. If that pocket looks thin now, wait until it’s empty.

Employer Responsibility. So you got some employees and by law, you are not required to offer them insurance. But if you don’t and they subsidize from the Big Teet of the Government, you get fee’d to death. It’s not a wittle teeny fee, uh-uh, it’s a $2000 fee. Oh but wait! Not just a one time fee but $2000 for each employee!

Via NY Post/Associated Press:

EMPLOYER RESPONSIBILITY: As in the Senate bill, businesses are not required to offer coverage. Instead, employers are hit with a fee if the government subsidizes their workers’ coverage. The $2,000-per-employee fee would be assessed on the company’s entire work force, minus an allowance. Companies with 50 or fewer workers are exempt from the requirement. Part-time workers are included in the calculations, counting two part-timers as one full-time worker.

This is my favorite:

GOP HEALTH CARE SUMMIT IDEAS: Following a bipartisan health care summit last month, Obama announced he was open to incorporating several Republican ideas into his legislation. But two of the principle ones – hiring investigators to pose as patients and search for fraud at hospitals and increasing spending for medical malpractice reform initiatives – did not make it into the legislation released Thursday. The legislation incorporates only one, an increase in payments to primary care physicians under Medicaid, an idea mentioned by Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.

All the hoopla, the manure, the downright lies of what this Bipartisan Summit was supposed to be about. To open communication, to actually listen to each other and 1, ONE idea got into the bill?

Unfreakingbelievable. To say the least, I’m disgusted. To say the most would cause me to put an “R” rating on this post. This bill is so full of crap that if it explodes, we’re gonna have brown gooey shit on faces from Alaska to Florida. You could cure global warming with the shit this bill is filled with. We’d block out the sun and could all panic about global cooling.

I won’t even go into the 16,000 IRS agents that will be needed to check on you every month and make sure you have insurance; Or the Privacy Act that is getting thrown out the window.

Am I proud to be an American? When this Bill gets crushed, torn, ripped to shreds and buried in some nuclear waste site…then I will be proud. Reinstating my Patriotism November 2010.

You can see a breakdown here.

EDIT: I still love this Country…I just despise those who are running it. CW.

Going Down in Flames…stopped his insanity.

First, before I start my own rant, I want to make it VERY VERY clear, that I do not condone what Mr. Joseph Stack did in Austin today. Having said that….here we go.

Before reading anything else via foxnews.com, I read what is now being dubbed as his “Manifesto“. I couldn’t help but think to myself, that if I was not reading a suicide letter, I would have agreed with almost everything he said. 

Am I insane? No, I don’t think so. Though in many circles, considering I just answered myself..I may be. What’s scary about the situation is this man was right in how he felt. Constantly getting burned by the system while the corrupt or lazy get a free ride. Was he on the edge? Obviously, but crazy…not so sure. It would be easy to label him as such, to get the broom and sweep this guy under the rug.  But just for a second, maybe we can concentrate on the message and not the messenger. Again, this was a tragedy in many senses of the word.

We live in a Country that has become complicated, lost, underestimated, tired and lively. Many people speak out on many different issues. Some are worthy of listening, some are a joke. What kind of Country do we live in when a man like this thinks or believes, this is the only way anyone will listen.  Would anyone have listened to his rant? Would anyone have cared? Will anyone read this and actually listen instead of judging. Who knows though I can assure you, I have no plans of offing myself or anyone else. One thing I have to believe in is things will get better and I can only pray that we don’t turn into a country where violence begins to represent our beliefs.

Back to the “Manifesto”. He writes of his story, his ups and downs, how many times he lost his retirement, how many times he got screwed by “The Man”.

Look around friend’s and foe’s. We are in a downward spiral and I don’t think a couple of pieces of candy will be at the bottom leading me to grow bigger or smaller. This is no adventure, though a white rabbit is leading the way. It’s become the 500lb gorilla but everyone keeps petting it like it’s a cute little hoppy, plushy pet. I have to ask myself why everything has become so complicated? I pay my bills, I have searched and searched for work, I pay daycare even when my son isn’t present. I see the doctor’s that write off an illness that’s serious into something mundane. I see criminals getting away with it again and again and I see politicians who give two shits about you or me. Something has changed and I don’t think it’s us, it’s the system. Somewhere in our young, old age…we lost. What’s depressing is, some of us don’t care anymore. We dance around the ring but no one wants to go in for the knock out. We want to complain and vent, but no one wants to say it when it counts. We’ve become Meek. I want to inherit the Earth…but not without knowing I fought for what was right.

If those in office who have the power only by those who have voted them in actually listened to what we are screaming everyday, maybe we would have a chance. But they won’t. Their agenda is blind and I never thought I’d say it but I’m almost sick of all of them, even my own party. I wish we could start over. Take out all the bullshit and sit quietly around a table rereading our Bill of Rights and the Constitution. It was all we needed to guide us in the right direction. That direction has been skewed, stretched, flipped and torn apart.

I could go on, about everything that has gone wrong but one thing is right; We, the people of the United States, have the power to make change. Not “Change we can believe in”..cause if I hear that bull one more time, I might just hurl all over my keyboard. How about change that is real, tangible. I want to touch it, smell it…taste it.

Joseph Stack will go down in history as a terrorist, as did Timothy McVey. Nobody listened to either of them and what followed was disaster, pain, and was not necessary if good ole’ Washington D.C. had taken two seconds to shut up and listen.

Labor Unions and the “Me” Factor

I’m not a big fan of Labor Unions. They used to be a necessity but times have changed.

Daimler Chrysler (and the maker of my car; below) has just announced that Cerberus, a Private Equity Firm, will buy 80% of Chrysler for a small 7.4 Billion (pronounced Beeeell-yon) D’u’llers! I Guess the Germans couldn’t save Chrysler either.

sidecaliber.jpgrearcaliber.jpg

(2007 Dodge Caliber R/T- I LOVE MY FREAKIN’ CAR)

Why has Chrysler become such a failure, the number one reason is High Labor Costs/Healthcare.

It’s a huge risk for Cerberus because it has agreed to take on Chrysler’s estimated $19 billion in retiree health care costs. Chrysler’s U.S. pension obligation is overfunded at present, the company has said.

I’m not a fan of Socialism but (the big but), it seems to me that the reason Chrysler is being sold off is because of the Labor Unions. Therefore, you would think they would want to…compromise a little more. Instead, they are watching them slide down the slippery slope…not even willing to throw a rope.

They were trying to stop the sale. They’d rather the company go down in flames then cut their pay. Not that I think they deserve less but something has to give.

Sales are down, the Japanese Automakers are kicking our collective American cars asssss….errr Bumpers.

Now I realize, the Unions aren’t the only ones to blame. Car design, innovation, hybrids, economy.. was lagging far behind the competitors. Nevertheless, Changes are being made in that direction, but obviously more needs to be done.

I guess time will tell.

For now, it’s sold and…pending Board approval, a new name: Daimler AG

Doomsday Economics…

Pessimism is such an annoying trait. I understand that there are times when “Doomsday” language is warranted. But it seems these days, that no matter what we do…there will always be a guy screaming, “The Sky is falling, The sky is falling!”.  And it’s this guy…who might as well grow a beard, discard that warm sweater for a bare chest and wrap a sign around his neck claiming Armageddon; Who we would normally pass by on the street; This is the guy we decide to listen to. It’s nice to have someone tell us something might be wrong. The problem is, if it sounds exciting a whole bandwagon of “believer’s” jump on and stuff this crap down our throat.

But I degress.

This guy says it better than I 🙂

Apocalypse Not

By Jerry Bowyer : 10 May 2007

Four years ago the folks at NewsMax sent me a request to interview Robert Prechter, the author of Conquer the Crash: You Can Survive and Prosper in a Deflationary Depression. I had just written a book called The Bush Boom, and although Prechter was pushing doom and gloom stuff, I wanted to hear the other point of view. I believe that ideas aren’t confirmed until they’re tested in debate.Prechter came on the show and made his case: dividend yields were at historic lows, and this meant that the stock market was highly overvalued. At that point the Dow was at about 8,000. I told him that he was missing an important point, that dividends were low because the tax code had discouraged them; that the underlying earnings were what counted. He became irritated. I asked him how low the Dow would go. He refused to answer. “Right now, it’s at about 8,000,” I said. “A year or two from now will it be closer to 10,000 or 2,500?” He chuckled at the idiocy of my question, “Much closer to 2,500!” he said as though it was the most obvious thing in the world. I asked him if he’d come back on the show in a year to discuss it. He agreed, but I never did hear from him again.It’s not just Prechter and the others doomsayers that NewsMax was pushing at the time. It’s not just the guys at Agora whose breathless emails and equally breathless titles have tantalized us for years with promises of coming soft depressions, melt-downs and demises. There’s a whole cottage industry of apocalyptic financial ‘journalism’. It’s easy to spot: just go to Amazon and punch in the word “coming” and take your pick of “collapse”, “melt-down”, “Armageddon”, “demise”, or “depression”. The day the Dow closed above 13,000 Larry Kudlow had one of them on his show (Michael Panzer, author of Financial Armageddon). “Sorry, not today Mike,” Larry said with a chuckle.Don’t get me wrong. I love to read these guys. The Agora guys (Addison Wiggin, Bill Bonner, etc.) are an enjoyable read, but I am always left with the impression that I’m reading master copy writers, not master forecasters. In fact, the forecasts seem to me to have been abysmal.Then there’s the left. Paul Krugman who told us that we’d ‘all better start brushing up on our depression economics,” and astonishingly, two months ago, was talking about a short-term drop in the Dow as a sign of “economic collapse.” The Robert Rubin sect which has been warning us about huge deficits (they’ve been dropping like a stone) and their negative impact on the economy. I heard Rubin himself talk like this during a conference call in 2004, I recently debated his assistant, Former Clinton Administration official Robert Shapiro, who has been warning his readers about the same thing since as early as 2000.

The Asian Contagion and the Sub-prime contagion are looking more and more like SARS and bird-flu: a disease with many, many more press hits than actual infections. Viral marketing seems to work a lot better than actual viruses. Oh, and then there’s Lou Dobbs…don’t get me started.

Via TCS Daily