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It sucks to be a celebrity: I want my privacy and not stalkers!

It sucks to be a celebrity!

I spent sometime on Youtube tonight watching Celebrities getting caught up by aggressive paparazzi. In general people think that if you become a celebrity, part of the job in your personal life is being recognized, photographed, stalked and followed.

Think about that..

What “if” a celebrity got into acting for reasons of money, but moreso, perfecting their craft of the ability to act. In the beginning they didn’t realize that they could no longer walk in public without the shot of multiple cameras, and their entire life being subject to public scrutiny.  They wanted to act, because they had a talent. That’s reasonable.

Some of you reading this might think, well, if they are going to be a celebrity, they should have known what that means, and they deserve everything they get.  But really, do they?

Fine,  you want to judge a celebrity based on their last performance, that’s your right. But please leave them alone while they are off the film set.  The person you know on camera, has their own personal desires, loves, and needs, and guess what? They’re human too.  As humans, we all want some peace, some time to ourselves, and time to enjoy life.

RECOMMENDATION TO THE PUBLIC

If you see a celebrity on the street, in a restaurant, or some place, do them a favor. Just smile, and say nothing. Don’t approach them. Don’t pull out your phone and take a picture.  That’s the initial reaction for most people — approach or take a picture.

Now let’s take a moment to think for yourself.  How would you like it, if everytime you left your home, people were pulling out cell phones and taking pictures, approaching you, and watching your every move on your day off?  At first, it seems like “wow, I have fans”. But after a few weeks of it, it turns into “wow. I have stalkers. I really can’t live a normal life anymore

Just because you want to act, or because you decided that acting was your thing, and you’re good at it, doesn’t mean you can’t live a normal life.  It doesn’t mean that you can’t walk and enjoy your personal space in public.  Not all of these people were birthed in a petri dish [sarcasm] to be actors and sign away their right to enjoy life.  These can be normal people, that have a talent, and while they’re on set or at work, fine, they’ll welcome the recognition.

But if these same people just want to go to a burger joint to grab a burger unhindered like the rest of society, let them do that without holding up phones, or snapping paparazzi pictures, etc.

More than the fact that they are actors, they are humans, with a limited life on this earth, same as you. Give them space when they are not work.

To prove my point, think if you became an A-list actor.  At first the fame and fortune sounds great. But guess how fast you become a prisoner if you become too successful.

— Walk to the nearest park without the paparazzi following you? Not a chance

— Get a buggy and walk down the aisles of the nearest grocery store without being followed or talked to? Not a chance

— Go for a jog, without someone spotting you? Not a chance

If we love the celebrities that give us entertainment on screen, the best compliment we can give them is to GIVE THEM THEIR SPACE in their personal life.  They’ve worked very, very, very hard to get where they are, and enjoy their talents in a production, a film, a TV interview etc.

But realize, when you see a celebrity who is not working.. guess what? THEY ARE NOT WORKING, and you’re invading their personal time that is very valuable to them.

They won’t take it as a compliment when you notice them in public.  Thousands of other people have done that already.  You’re not the first… You’re probably #5139 that has said “hey! I know you. I’m such a huge fan” in the last few months. It gets old fast to the celebrity. They’ve heard that numerous times already.

If you really do love and admire the celebrity you see… want to know what the best compliment you could do?  Pretend you don’t notice. Give them their space. No pictures, no approaching. Know that you could have acted like a jerk like everyone else and tried to own the moment for your own selfish purposes. But instead, you walked away. You smiled, and said nothing. You just backed off..

Those tender moments when a celebrity is recognized and not fawned over, and treated with respect.. are far and few between. Do that… Be part of that.. Every now and then, a celebrity can walk down the street and there is no paparazzi, or if they get noticed, someone smiles and looks away and says nothing.  When that happens, they’re aware of their surroundings, and they are especially happy that I can just “be me” for this hour, without flashes of cameras, or people screaming my name. I can actually enjoy my day off like the rest of the world lives.

So give celebrities what they crave so much. PRIVACY.

That’s not too much to ask. You can have all the money in the world, but if you can’t walk down the street, or be in public without being stalked, how do you value life?

Take a look at this video:

Listen to the fan squeal “He’s one of my favourites” — like it matters. Is he just a statue or piece of your collection? Do you even care how he is feeling at that moment? No? As long as Kaneau can pose for a picture with you in it, I guess everything is fine, right?

Study Mrs. Loudmouth, vs Kaneau’s reaction. She’s elated that she might get a picture with Kaneau, and yet she never asked him. She classified him as “one of her favourites”. Like a comic book character, a big nothing in her context of actors she likes…

This type of situation happens every day, and it’s sick to watch..

Celebrities are people too.  Stop exploiting them or selfishly using them for your own purpose.

Look how Kaneau looks like a zoo animal. Putting on a fake smile, just to make those fans happy. No one in that picture cares how about how he’s feeling, what he’s been through for the last 2-3 hours. As long as they get a Kaneau picture, that’s his problem, and they are happy.

..and then she says “I love all your movies”, like that is the sentence which basically says “Because I like you as a celebrity, and because I love all your movies, I deserve to treat you like a zoo animal with pictures for my own private benefit, so I’m happy… you probably just wanted your privacy, but I don’t care.. since I will be popular in my own inner circle by proving I met Kaneau Reeves..”

Stop treating celebrities like that..

With that being said, this is a non-stalker non-paparazzi blog.  I just paid $780 for a truck repair and I’m struggling to survive.  If you’re a celebrity reading this and agree with what I said, please send a few bitcoins to:

1MCSRJo2j3CcP6Nd18eXKqePNFSTz6rGY4

Even if I get nothing by that BTC address, I’ll still continue to understand celebrities and the struggle they go through.  I think the rest of us need to take a step back and leave celebrities alone… That’s the best compliment we can give them.

 

 

 

Too busy to read a blog. Too busy to comment. Blogs are dead?

It was only a couple years ago, everyone was told “you had to have a blog”..

The only way to survive on the internet was to have a blog. People did it, companies did it, socialites did it. Everyone had a blog, because the “in” thing to do, was to have a blog.

Guess what happened? There was an over-saturation of blogs and no one was reading them anymore.

I love (and still do) writing a blog post.  It’s my way of sharing my inner most feelings about the way I view life and see who listens. The problem is, that I do get a couple dozen people who read my stuff, but none of them will ever push the button to leave a comment.
It is ok, I’m fine with it now. YES! I am talking to you.  You’ve read this far, and you are the exact type of person I’m referring to.. I don’t mean to call you out like that, but if you were me, you’d understand.

People are busy these days. Definitely too busy to comment to blog posts. Actually, aren’t blogs dead anyway? Everything is Youtube and video now. Who has the time to read.

—-> I will tell you who has the time to read <—-

…intelligent people. People that have gone on Youtube, watched the amateur dribble on there, and want more. People who aren’t afraid to enrich their brains by reading text.

I admit, in this blog post I’m getting a little cynical. For that I apologize.

But the only people I am apologizing to, are those that have read this post to this point. That’s you!  Do you realize over 100 people have landed on this blog page, and you’re one of the 1% that actually kept reading and might even respond?

So let it be.. people may be too busy to read a blog, or comment, and blogs may be dead.

That’s not the reason I started blogging about my thoughts though. I will continue to do so, irregardless of how Google wants to rank me.

I am curious though, about you.

Have you been here before? Ever written a blog yourself? What do you think about blogs?These are simple questions, and if you could take the next 30 seconds out of your day to even answer one of them, that’d be so nice..

I guess at this point, I’ll have to wait and see.. 🙂

 

Parental instinct: New mothers and fathers don’t need instinct.

New mothers and fathers don’t need instinct.

I watched a TV show tonight (20/20) to be exact where they showcased mothers that have no internal instinct towards the children they’ve given birth to.. They had a whole avalanche of excuses of why it was ok to abandon their sons and daughters because taking care of them didn’t fit into the mother’s life long goals.

First of all, this makes absolutely no sense.
If you are a birth mother and bring another human on to this earth, knowingly and willingly, it is now your commitment to ensure your child grows, develops, and remains safe.

Some of these mothers who “check in” on their abandoned children figure that that because they have no inherent maternal instinct, it is quite okay, to walk away.

My response to that, is simply, raising children isn’t going to be a bowl of cherries day in and day out. Just because you don’t want to fulfil your roll as a parent, doesn’t make it ok, to abandon your children and leave them without a mother figure in their lives.

Some of these women will say “well, they’re doing well, and to be honest, so am I, living away from home. I’ve become a better mother by leaving the house and having our odd talks over the internet”

Really?

Are you serious?

How can you possibly carry a new born for 9 months, give birth to them, and then walk away like they are some sort of family pet? People aren’t hamsters, goldfish or guinea pigs.

Do you have any idea how much you could harm your own child in life by leaving them to fend for themselves, regardless if the father is present?

It’s not a lot to ask. Every child wants to know their mother and father as they grow up.

So do new born birds, new born puppies, and new born hamsters.

Now the weirdest part of these mothers who decided to abandon their children, never went through the experience their advocating. For instance, many of them had Dad and Mom nearby. But in 2013 with new age thinking, they fully believe they don’t owe anything to their own children.

Listen closely. If you brought someone onto this Earth, you have a duty to them, as a civilized human being to guide them, help them, and be there for them.

This is common sense. These idiotic mothers who put themselves first, and leave kids behind, need a wake up call.

Now the 20/20 show did a camera cut to the kids which one 13 year old daughter said “I understand, and I’m fine with it”

Want to know why she acquiesced to that? Because she has no choice. She simply doesn’t know better. If you grew up as a child and your mother was a click a way, on the internet via Skype, you wouldn’t know better. You’d simply learn how to accept things as the best you could get.

Now I realize that not everyone is going to be Super Dad or Super Mom.. that’s not my point.

But at the very minimum, if you bring a child into this world, you have no right, under any logical point, to let them fend for themselves like that..

Just to reiterate, the person I’m mostly speaking about has her own “justifiable” blog here:

http://wildgoddesslife.com/the-better-mothers-project/

I read through her nonsense and half cared about her points. All the while I was thinking, how selfish are you to put your own wants and needs ahead of your kids that you birthed?

Life is a challenge. Being a parent to kids is a challenge. What none of us are really allowed to do, is bring new kids into the world and abandon them.

Here’s the clincher:

This same woman is now complaining about 4th stage cancer after abandoning her kids for her own goals and paths in life.

Her idiotic attitude to this day must be “why me – why do I have cancer?”

Well, you were given life on this earth to do something for the betterment of mankind. Instead you chose to use your time on this earth for “Me, Me, Me, and more Me”. Now you have 4th stage cancer, and still holding true to your illogical values. Your kids are suffering, and you use your time to write a blog talking about your 4th stage cancer.

You, Madam, by your own accord have become a waste of space, time, and effort on this earth. I have no compassion for your 4th stage cancer any more than you have compassion for your children out there that you have chosen to ignore.

At the end of the day, justice will prevail. Her eldest daughter (under 15) is already talking about the day will come when she has kids and she will never act like her own mom.

Life’s responsibilities aren’t a choice. They are a calling. If you avoid them, and ignore them, and you get 4th stage cancer, don’t wonder why.

I wouldn’t wish cancer on my worst enemy. But in this particular case it is hard for me to break down and cry for her.  I fully believe this woman brought it on herself with her selfish attitude. Perhaps the Universe in it’s intricate way s gave her an opportunity to do something valuable here, and she decided instead to spend her time here on her own self-interests.

I wish the best for her kids. For her, I hope before her medical condition worsens, she realizes her mistake. Selfish ideology never pays off. Shame on you.

If you have any comments to share, I’m really interested in hearing them.

 

What is the meaning of life? Time to realize it.

People often wonder what the meaning of life is all about. I think here was even a comedy show from Monty Python about it.

To be honest, the meaning of life, in a general sense, means you were put on the earth do DO SOMETHING. At the very minimal LEARN SOMETHING.

I must have already lost some people based on those two statements alone. Do Something? Learn Something? What does that mean? Is it referring to the fact that I shouldn’t party every weekend? Does it mean this? Does it mean that?

What the meaning of life means (in my eyes), is that you were given birth, lived your life, for the purpose of discovering yourself as a human being and doing something significant before you go. This could mean creating a picasso art painting. It could mean that you helped someone in desperate need. It could mean that you wrote a book. It could mean that you smiled to someone on the subway who was about to commit suicide that day, but because of your smile, they held on for one more day.

I think it is an indisputable fact. People were born here, for a deliberate reason. You might go through your whole life and not understand why… and then.. the day comes. Omigosh, I can’t believe it!  Something happened today that was completely out of the ordinary that I was a part of..  (Now you can see it)

I believe that the earth is nothing more than a “proving ground” or “testing ground” for souls.  Sure, they give you a body, and let you run around amuck like children, but when truth comes to shove.. they watch how you react.

What IF the earth was just that? A trial or testing ground for souls.  You are not allowed to move on spiritually unless you become a decent human being on earth?

Sometimes you don’t get all the answers you want, simply by asking questions. Once in awhile, listen to the silence around you, ask the questions and see if you can intellectually hear answers in your head.

I realize that last sentence might seem strange to someone. “See if you can intellectually hear answers in your head”

Let me clarify.

We’ve heard terms like our “alter-ego”, or our “guardian-angel”, or the “voice of our conscious”.. It is that voice that you hear in your head that seems to come from abroad.

If you slow down for even just 5 solid minutes. Block out the city noise around you.  Breathe, and think of some questions, and listen…  You might be given an answer back. Where does that voice come from? Is it you? Or from some place far away? Is it the universe?

Actually it does not matter what you hear, as much as it means, how willing you are to know yourself, what you are capable of, and what you will try to do tomorrow.

For the people that still don’t get it:

You weren’t given life, to be born on earth, to watch TV, to buy the latest cell phone, and to dine at the best restaurants.

Perhaps you were put here to develop into a real person, with some importance, to give back to society, your neighbor, family, or even a stranger. But you exist for a reason. Some people never find that reason. Some people do.. It’s actually up to you. Are you receptive to the idea you can do some good while you’re here? Or are you just here to party your heart out without a care in the world?

Having fun, is nice.

Caring about the purpose of your existence is deep, and shows that you have a heart, are intelligent, and are in tune with things.

Understanding who you are is free. It just takes some time to realize who you are…

Summer solstice: What is it, and why is it important?

Most of us have heard the term “Summer Solstice”. But what does it really mean, and why is it important?  Here are the reasons why the summer solstice is an important event, and why you should appreciate it..

In short, the summer solstice marks the beginning of summer in the northern hemisphere, but there is so much more than that..

Did you know that when this happens, it means that there is 24 hours of non-stop daylight north of the Arctic Circle?  If you lived there, you’d care. 🙂

At the same time, this is when 24 hours of darkness is experienced south of the Arctic Circle too.

Right now, you’re probably thinking, ok big deal. Two spots on earth it’s either 24 hours of dark, or 24 hours of light. Is that all this means? Nope..

In some parts of the world, namely Scandinavia, Estonia and Latvia, the summer solstice is actually the the most celebrated holiday other than Christmas.

When the summer solstice happens, this means that the sun is at its northern-most position in relation to the equator for the northern hemisphere and its southern most position for the southern hemisphere.  This only happens once per year.

Now here is the weird part… and you, yourself, might have experienced this..

During the summer solstice, people feel different.  They can’t put their finger on it, but they feel more energetic, and emotionally better.

 

We know that a sunny day makes us feel better in general, but why?

The sun’s rays allow us to use the cholesterol in our skin to be converted into vitamin D, which we need.

WHAT?

It is true.

 

This is why we are emotionally in a better frame of mind during a sunny day. The heat of the sun feels good. The brightness is pleasing to our eyes. While all of this is going on, there is a healing and cleansing going on physically with our bodies.

I read that sunlight prevents 17 different kinds of cancer from this website.

So the more we talk about the summer solstice, the more it seems obvious that it is celebrated for a very good reason. It’s a time to feel emotionally well, physically well, and to celebrate an event that only happens once a year.

The topics about summer solstice I’ve shared so far is only scratching the surface.

So we could sum up the significance of summer solstice these ways:

1) the sun is shining on the earth this time of year, more than it does any other time of the year

2) the sun has a huge impact on our bodies, how we feel, and our emotional well being

3) We’re converting cholesterol in our skin into vitamin D for “free” because of the sun, this happens more frequently during summer solstice.

4) Certain cultures and countries celebrate summer solstice almost equivalent as if it was a “Happy New Year” event on a paper calendar. To be honest, it makes you wonder why we celebrate a paper calendar New Year more than we do a summer solstice when the latter seems to be more important to us than the former.

So Happy Summer Solstice to you!!  Until this blog post, I didn’t know what it was either. But knowing now that the flaming ball of radiation in space called the Sun is actually giving us things we need as humans to survive.. and the fact that these few days during the summer solstice is when the Earth feels it the most. Sure. Sign me on, I celebrate it too. The Summer Solstice is a good thing, and it makes me want to walk outside and feel the sun that much more.

Life is funny sometimes. We’re so busy texting and watching TV, that a simple concept like the summer solstice needs to be explained. We should have learned this in school, or better yet, from our own parents long ago.

 

 

 

Vegetable Gardens vs Mowing your Lawn!

People know how to mow their lawn. They know how to rake their leaves, they even know how to wash their driveways and trim their bushes.

What the majority of people don’t do, is grow a vegetable garden. It is surprising to me that people do not take the time to grow some tomatoes or cucumbers and save money by reaping the benefits of their efforts.  You can’t eat grass, but people spend countless hours maintaining their lawns.

The few courageous people out there that actually do plant a vegetable garden, usually go to the local nursery, or hardware (even drug store) and buy pre-potted vegetable plants, bring them home and transplant them in their little vegetable garden.  They feel they are urban farmers at this point. They took a plant, stuck it in soil, watered it during the summer months, and picked off the fruit or vegetables that the plant grows.

Then you get the die-hards – these are the people that just buy seeds from the store, grow them in pots, or in a greenhouse, and think they are farmers, because they bought seeds in a packet and successfully planted them, transplanted them outside when the weather was nice, and reaped the rewards when they were in full bloom and producing vegetables and fruit (especially in the case of tomatoes).

Who is left?  The truly organic people. Those few people, maybe 1 out of every 1000 that knows what HEIRLOOM seeds are.. Or better yet, how to save, and create their own seeds from things they’ve grown in previous years without needing to run to a store to buy a packet of seeds.

Imagine that, you eat a watermellon, and spit out the seeds. You eat grapes with seeds, and spit them out. Slice a lemon, you have to get rid of the seeds.  Has anyone taken the time to realize that the annoying “seeds” could provide real food for you the following year?

People will say, well I’m too busy to save seeds and grow a garden, I work all day, and have to go grocery shopping afterwards.  Well what if the grocery store was in your backyard?  If you took a few minutes to cultivate some soil, plant some heirloom seeds, grow a plant, and reap what you sow, and actually harvest your efforts “FOR FREE” and save yourself a bundle of cash in the process, wouldn’t that be worth it?

I can tell you from experience this single thing. A wax coated imported tomato that was picked green, and trucked to your location and ripened along the way, will have no where near the taste.. that one that you could have grown on your own. To illustrate my point, is a frozen pizza from a grocery store (think cardboard) as tasty as one delivered to you hot and fresh?

So let’s see what we’re really asking people to do, because this idea seems so foreign to most people:

1) Get a hold of a decent seed (heirloom in a packet, or one that you saved yourself)

2) Plant it in decent soil, that has nutrients and organic material enough to feed the plant

3) Water it

4) When it produces fruit or vegetables, take them

5) Next year, repeat…

There is something so special about eating what you created.  It is true, tomatoes or cucumbers, or even beans will not grow widely in your lawn without you taking the first few steps. But if you do take the few moments outside of your internet, gaming, TV, or texting day, to actually sink a seed into the soil and ensure it gets watered.. You can reap what you sow.

People keep complaining about the economy, but savings to survive are right infront of you. GROW something, and eat what you produce. It will give you a greater outlook on life, and there is nothing better than enjoying the fruits of your labour.

Many people will suggest, “well I’m not a farmer, and I don’t know what I am doing”. Well google is there to help you. Watch some videos, do some searches, and see how easy it can be. If you are an early starter, you might kill a few young plants by accident. But at least you tried, and you are learning along the way.

Every new year that shows up, and every seasonal cycle that we experience, you have a chance at trying something new. Try to grow at least one single vegetable or fruit bearing plant, and if it doesn’t work out, learn from  your mistakes.

It doesn’t take much to sink a dried corn seed into the ground, to grow a corn plant, and get free corn.

If this is something you haven’t spent much time thinking or learning about, then perhaps it is time you did.

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas for your wife.

The Valentine’s Day “flowers” thing is getting old.

The dinner out, and chocolates, shows that you’re not creative, and very predictable.  It’s like getting a new “tie” for fathers day — been there, done that, no more.

So this Valentine’s Day, if diamonds are too pricey, there is plenty that can be done for $200 or less. Here is some gift ideas for hubby’s trying to do something a little different for their wife.

Night in a hotel

This is an outing, but if you get a nice hotel room that has a nice skyline view of the city, it can be a nice change of pace. Waking up with breakfast served to both of you in the morning, is nice.

Day at the spa

Every woman likes to get pampered at the spa. Nails done, facial makeover, massage, sauna — it costs $100 to $200, and they normally don’t like to ask for money for this purpose.  So take the initiative and get her a gift certificate at a local full-service spa.

Order some cutsy “lover” gift online

Have it sent to the office. It comes in a brown box, no one will know what it is… this way you can get the Valentine’s Day gift and advance and surprise her with it.  It can be sexual, or just playfully romantic, like a stuffed bear that says I love you, or separating heart keychain where each of you get a 1/2 of the heart. There are many things to choose from.

This should get you thinking along the right lines.  Just run the following “gift” test:

a) Is it something out of the ordinary?

b) Does it focus on “her”

c) Is it creative?

d) Is it something you both can enjoy or gain benefit from in some way?
(the spa idea, helps her to feel pretty, and be at her best for you, so that idea counts)

If it meets these basic requirements, it’s probably going to be an appreciated Valentine’s Day gift.

Last minute Christmas Shopping: Xmas Eve or Xmas Day!?

About 10 years ago, I witnessed something that was totally bizarre, and since it is that time of year again, I’ll share the story with you.

On Christmas Day, almost everything in our neighborhood was closed, with the exception of the local 7-11 convenience store.  I went to the store at 10am to try and grab the last issue of any newspapers with boxing day flyers that may be left.

Inside the store, was a man who was carrying all sorts of merchandise and had a rushed look on this face. In his arms, he had really strange things, like pens, pencils, notepads, scotch tape, magazines, a novel, and other assorted items. He was at the counter asking the clerk for things, and pointing wildly at anything that caught his attention.

His conversation with the clerk went something like this:

Shopper: “What’s that, over there? A keychain?  Let me see? Ok, yes, I’ll take two of those. How about those disposable cameras, how much are they?”

Clerk: “$8.99 each sir”

Shopper: “Ok, give me one of those. How about those stuffed animals on the top shelf”

The clerk was less than amused (suppose he was paid hourly and didn’t want to work in the first place.

Clerk: “This one is $15.49 and this other one is $12.99”

Shopper: “Ok, I’ll take the one for $12.99. Do you have any other toys or anything else?”

Clerk: “Sorry, sir, no only what  you see”

Shopper: “Ok, I’ll take some lottery tickets then”

Clerk: “Which ones?”

Shopper: “Give me $50 worth of assorted ones.. Oh! Batteries, I need batteries too..”

…and on and on it went..

He was on a last minute shopping spree at 7-11 on Christmas day, at around 10am in the morning. Spending about $200 in various merchandise.

Now I wonder, what was his story?  Why would anyone wait to shop for presents at 10am Christmas Day?

Some possibilities could be:

a) His house had caught fire the day before, they were moved to a hotel Christmas Eve, and Christmas morning he ran out to try and buy whatever he could to piece together some sort of Christmas for his family.

b) In order to hide his Christmas presents from his family, he had them all stored in the trunk of his car, but on Christmas Eve after the kids were asleep, he went out to the car, but the car was no longer in the driveway. Some thief stole it, which in turn, left him without presents to give to his kids

c) He is divorced and his ex-wife told him a month ago, that he could not see the kids this Christmas because of the restraining order she has on him,  and at the last minute she broke down on Christmas morning and said “ok, the kids are asking for you. You can come over for an hour with any presents you have, see the kids, and then leave..” Which caused him to run around at the last minute buying things.

d) He was an inmate at Jail, got released Christmas Day, at 7am, and he had 3 hours to do his shopping the best he could, so he could go visit his family.

e) He took a flight, and arrived at 6pm Christmas Eve, but his luggage was missing with all the gifts.  After spending 4 or 5 hours on the phone with the airline trying to find his lost luggage, he finally gave up and went to bed. After trying to call them again in the morning, he discovered that the luggage still hadn’t been found, so he was buying whatever gifts he could, so that Christmas would still exist.

f) His family went over to visit some old long time friends of his on Christmas morning, and to their surprise, they admitted that there were no gifts under the tree for their kids. Feeling horrible, he said he would be right back, and was trying to put together some sort of last minute Christmas for this needy family.

g) He was a psycopath or mentally disturbed person who escaped a local hospital Chrismas morning, and was trying to buy a collection of last minute Christmas gifts, with the intention of having a cab bring him to his ex-wife’s home where his kids are..

The reasons for this type of  last minute Christmas Shopping could be endless..

Do you have any more scenarios that could be true for something like this? If so, I’d love to hear them!

Shoveling Driveways: The WRONG way.

Shoveling your driveway should be a simple concept, but people screw it up every year. I’m not talking about the safe way to bend with your knees and stuff like that..

Instead, I’m referring to people who don’t grasp the concept on where to put the snow!

NO, it is not polite to throw it onto your neighbor’s yard.

NO, it is not morally, ethnically and sometimes (not legally) acceptable to throw it onto the street!

It is this last point that I have a huge problem with.. I constantly see people who shovel their sidewalks and driveways and throw it onto the street.

Let’s analyze this sudden loss of common sense.  You don’t want snow on your driveway, so it is easier for you to drive on.. Yet it seems perfectly fine for you to add extra snow to the common roadway where your neighbors, and yourself included will be driving regularily on..

If you talk to one of these snow violators, they’ll say “well the snow plow will get it”.

REALLY? When? Within 2 minutes of you adding snow to the street?  Or 2 hours? or 2 days?

LEAVE THE SNOW ON YOUR OWN YARD.

Don’t give it to your neighbors to deal with. Don’t give it to the public street so we all have to drive over it.

These people are complete morons, and I cannot understand why such stupid, thoughtless, ignorant people exist in our society.

Family Restaurants: How cooks can ruin a meal.

Ever gone out to eat, and the meal is “so-so”, and there is nothing you can put your finger on, but for some reason your clubhouse sandwich and fries, just aren’t the same?

You’re looking at the sandwich, and it “looks right”, but there is something in the taste from your plate, that just kind of doesn’t make things taste fresh or spectacular?

There are all kinds of little things that a lazy chef or short order cook will do, that translates into your plate not making your taste buds happy. I’ll talk about one meal, and we’ll see how many ways you can ruin it.

First of all, let’s quickly talk about what makes a clubhouse sandwich and fries:

Bread, lettuce, bacon, tomato, chicken (or turkey), cheese, mayo, margarine, french fries.

Simple right? Put it all together, and you have a club house and fries.

WRONG.

1) Bread — Before you toast the bread, was it fresh? Often it sits stale in a refrigerator or a counter and starts to form little white stale circles after awhile. No there is no mold on the bread, but the composition of the bread has changed, thereby changing the flavor slightly. Toast the bread, and what’s that? The toaster was set too high, or you didn’t watch it in time? Ok, scrape off the burnt parts.. the customer will never know. The problem with scraping off burnt parts, is that little flecks of the burnt bread will still be on the top layer. Thinly enough that the eye can’t see them, but the mouth and tongue zero in on them. The cook may say “hey, the sandwich looks ok” — yes, but what about the taste you idiot? If you burnt your own bread, I hardly doubt you’d eat it. You’d throw it away and make your own fresh toast again. Why doesn’t the customer, who is paying a premium for his meal get the same treatment?

2) Margarine and Mayo. Caking on the margarine, vs thinly spreading it evenly can leave gobs of margarine in your mouth, which takes away flavors from the rest of the sandwich. Just because the cook is in a hurry to get your darned sandwich outta the kitchen doesn’t mean he or she has to send substandard product out. Take the extra 1/2 second to spread the bread with margarine and mayo evenly. Almost like you are making a sandwich out of love for your spouse. Again, customers are not cows at a trough. The way something tastes is very evident. Want them to crave your clubhouse sandwich and come back for more another time? THEN MAKE IT PROPERLY, with care and attention!

3) Lettuce. Very few customers will open and dissect their sandwich and examine each individual component. So that piece of lettuce that was browning near the stem, or the unwashed lettuce with a couple of tiny bugs on it… Yes, they will end up eating it, but the flavor will be sour, taste a little off… and they won’t be able to say “hmm. that lettuce didn’t taste right”.. instead, they will say, “I don’t know what it is about this sandwich, but it doesn’t taste very good”. Each component regardless of how unimportant you may think it is.. adds to the overall taste of the entire thing. Start with fresh clean lettuce, and you instantly change a mediocre sloppy clubhouse into something to be craved and desired next time this customer thinks about coming back to your establishment.

3) Tomatoes. Many short order cooks will pre-slice tomatoes to save them time in the kitchen. These tomatos will be held in a refrigerated state. Do you realize that a tomato is a living organism? This is why a tomato will still ripen even after it is pulled from the vine. So.. when you preslice tomatoes and hold them in the refrigerator, you’ve basically killed the tomato, disrupted its organic architecture, and it begins to rot at a very slow pace. But any type of rot translates into poor taste. I’ve seen tomato slices pulled from a refrigerator that no longer have their crispness. Look at the membranes, they turn translucent and spiney. Put this partially rotting slice of tomato in your mouth, and the flavor is very pungent, over-ripe tasting, and gross. The cook saved 2 seconds by not having to give you a fresh slice, because thats how long it takes to cut a slice from a large tomato. Idiots, I have no idea why a couple extra seconds is worth ruining a sandwich.

4) Bacon. Is it fresh, or was it cooked 4 days ago? Was the bacon deep fried, or fried on a grill top? Deep fried bacon may look cooked evenly, but you’re getting extra layers of grease from the deep fryer with all other kinds of flavors that do not belong to the taste of bacon. Why not just take a teaspoon of deep fryer oil and drizzle it over the sandwich? It’s the same thing. Just because the bacon looks as being cooked — YOU’RE ADDING FLAVOR that doesn’t belong, and will ruin a sandwich.

5) Cheese. Is it processed, was it pulled out of a wrapper? Do you know how many additives and preservatives are added to pre-sliced pre-wrapped cheese? Don’t believe it? Try and melt a piece of individually wrapped processed cheese and see what happens to it. Why not have a nice brick of cheddar cheese and cut a fresh slice off it? You’d like that flavor, so don’t you think your customer would like that too?

6) Fries. Are they fresh or frozen? Every eat fresh cut NY Fries? They made a huge franchise chain out of that simple concept. No, instead, everyone wants to buy the precut precooked frozen fries because they keep longer and cook faster. But what about flavor?

If you notice how many times I use the word flavor? Flavor is EVERYTHING!

So the clubhouse & fries gets served to your customers, and if you’ve made ANY of these common mistakes in the kitchen, the customer eats the meal and when a friend or family member at the table says “so, how was yours?” ”

Ummm it wasn’t all that great. I don’t think I’d order it again” you say.

STOP BEING LAZY IN RESTAURANT KITCHENS. TAKE PRIDE IN YOUR WORK, AND MAKE THE SANDWICH AS IF IT WAS YOUR OWN!

Nothing worse than paying a premium price for a clubhouse and fries, and the chef or short order cook takes shortcuts and doesn’t pay attention to that extra tender loving care to produce an outstanding product.

By the way.. add a little salt and pepper to that freshly sliced tomato. A hint of those will make the whole sandwich come together quite nicely. Many people won’t dissect their sandwich to do it themselves. As a chef, a little spice is very nice.

Comments anyone?

Christmas Tree Ornaments and Decorations: A suggestion

One of the beautiful things about holiday or Christmas trees, is that you never will find two of them that look alike. It’s such a pleasure to see the different tree decorations. All trees look nice, but some of them really stand out more than others.

You can also tell how much time someone has spent decorating a tree. For those that don’t care, we’ve all seen the tree with some garland on it, a bunch of red & blue bulb ornaments, some tinsel, a star, and that’s it..

That is a very plain way of decorating a Christmas tree.

However, there are little things you can do to really dress up your holiday tree. One thing to note, is that while uniformity is important for the Christmas lights you put on it — NOT SO for the ornaments and decorations!

For instance, putting the odd candy cane on your tree’s branches looks nice. Covering the tree in candy canes from top to bottom in an even spread, ruins in the look. This is an example where “less” becomes MORE in the end. Carefully choosing which items to place, where you place them, and how often you place them, quickly shows if you’re an amateur or a pro…

Having a nice variety of tree ornaments looks really nice. Things like monogrammed knitted decorations. Or a little teddybear holding a small “Merry Christmas” sign. May it worthwhile for someone to step up close to your tree and search around looking at all the little things you’ve added.

If you can stand 10 feet from a tree, glance at it from top to bottom in 3 seconds and think you’ve taken it all in, then in my opinion, the tree is very simplified and the loving care that should go into it, is just not there.

Now, I am not suggesting that you go out and spend $300 to $500 worth of expensive ornaments to decorate your tree. Instead, since we are going to be decorating a tree every year that we’re still alive, this gives you a great opportunity to accumulate things over time.

Make it a point to buy 1 or 2 really nice ornaments every year. Or better yet, if you have children, and they want to buy you something for $5 or $10 as a gift to mom and dad, let them pick out an ornament to buy for the tree. After the kids grow up and leave home, the ornaments will still be there, and the special meaning that they have will be present every Christmas whether they are home for the holidays or not.

About 15 years ago, we received a monogrammed glass bulb, with our company name on it from a customer who offered us a thank you gift once. We still have that decoration and every year we hang it on our tree, because it was given to us as a gift of kindess, and it was unexpected and very appreciated.

If you really think about what a Christmas tree represents, and how much love, kindness and caring it is suppose to encourage, then I ask you.

WHY DO PEOPLE BUY A BOX OF “35” CHRISTMAS TREE ORNAMENTS.. and stick them on it, willy-nilly without having any special thought to it?

The idea is not to just decorate a tree.

The idea is to decorate a tree, from the heart, put something special into it, (and on it).. stand back, and look at all the little things that together, make a wonderful tree.

Box of 35 ornament bulbs? Not for my tree thank you.

By the way, no matter what, I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas!

Keno vs Lotto 6/49 (Pick 6)

Keno is played with 1 to 80 numbers on the board. To win a large prize, you usually have to pick 6 or more.

On the other hand, Lotto 6/49 (Pick 6) is played with 1 to 49 numbers that are drawn. To win a large prize, you usually have to pick only 6…

So the question is: WHY WOULD ANYONE PLAY KENO?

Really.. why would they play keno if the 6/49 payouts and chance of winning are much higher? Instead of 80 numbers, you are only dealing with 49. Massive mathematical advantages to that..

So, if you are going to wager a $1 bet against 6/49 (or Pick 6), you instantly have a lot better odds of walking away with a jackpot prize vs Keno.

Now where I live, the top prize in Keno is $100,000 — However the top prize in 6/49 around $5,000,000

So why would anyone in their right frame of mind play Keno? There is only one answer.. Simply put.. Keno draws every 5 minutes, and Lotto 6/49 only draws twice week.

People love instant gratification. They love the dopamine to their brains when they have a “chance” every 5 minutes. So it is that chemical reaction in the brain that causes people to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in wasted Keno gambling.

Now I would end this blog post a certain way, but unfortunately my Keno numbers are coming up, and I have to pay attention to them… (Yes, the right side of my brain says have fun playing Keno, meanwhile my left side.. says … idiot. Just be patient and concentrate on the 6/49 draw)

Christmas Party Ideas: How to cater it yourself.

Hosting a successful Christmas / Holiday party where you cater it yourself, has some VERY important things that everyone needs to pay attention to.. Here is some hints and tips that will make those seasonal parties a complete success..

#1 Good Food

Seems like common sense, naturally you will want to provide good food — but what does that mean? For starters, you NEVER EVER want to try new recipes that you’ve downloaded off the internet, tried to make, and hope they work. This is not a time to try new things incase they don’t work. If you want to try something new, make it days in advance. Feed your family, friends, and yourself, and taste it well ahead of time. If you’re happy with how it came out, only then, should you put it on the “menu” for the Christmas party or holiday event.

There is nothing worse than someone who has a great idea, buys all the groceries to produce something they think will work, and having it become a complete flop at a party when things go wrong. Don’t risk the embarassment of trying something new at the last minute. Any new recipe, whether it is an appetizer, a main course, or even a snack, which needs some getting use to.. is a definate NO NO, when you have a large gathering of people coming to test it.

If you want to try something new, make it a week or two in advance. Eat it yourself. Serve it to your immediate friends and family. Get their opinion. Be sure that you have the preparation method completely down pat, and fully understand how long it takes, how long the item “holds” under heat lamps, or in the oven etc.

If you are hosting a Christmas or Holiday office party.. Now is NOT the time to play around and experiment, because there is a huge chance things may not go as planned.

Pre-test, and pre-sample everything way ahead of time, so you’re definately sure that come the Christmas party or event, things will work out perfectly.

#2 Mixes — Soda pop and more

If you are running a Christmas / Office party or event, you definately want to have enough mixes on hand. Everyone can bring in their own beer, or alcohol beverage, but many will depend on you having the mixes available. If you buy a couple gallons (2L) of coke, and a couple gallons of Diet Coke (2L) and hoping that it will be “enough”. You are doing your guests an unjustice. This stuff, as long as it is not opened, DOES NOT SPOIL EASILY.. So it makes sense to have extra on hand — “more than you need”… after the Christmas / Holiday office party is over — the extra remaining is still useful. It is a lot better to have double what you need, than to have “not enough” when it comes to mixes… Most people will bring a bottle, but they kind of assume you’ll have enough Coke and Diet Coke on hand.. so buy double what you think you will need.

#3 – SNACKS

Now most of you will have a dinner, or some major appetizers available. But there are many who are expecting (and wanting nothing more than) some snacks. Potato chips, pretzels, a party mix. Again, this stuff is relatively cheap. Stock up on it. Usually it comes in vaccuum sealed bags, and has a shelf life of 6 months or more, so why skimp now? Having plenty of snacks that can be ripped open “on hand” will show that you’re prepared, and will make the night go by that much more smoothly.

#4 – ENTERTAINMENT / MUSIC

Some thought has to be put into this.. Nothing worse than a bunch of people grouped together, and very little thought has been spent into the entertainment / music aspect. Have your stereo ready, willing and able to put out the tunes to keep people hopping. Do you have your CD’s, DVD’s and MP3’s on the ready? Nothing worse than dead silence in the middle of the night when someone is fooling around with the stereo. People that attend your Christmas / Holiday office party want fun. They want the music to take care of itself, and to be predominate. Don’t forget extra special attention on this point.

#5 – Washrooms and toilet paper.

I can’t begin to tell you the amount of Christmas / Office Holiday Parties I’ve been to, where the washroom becomes the after thought. It is vitally important that your washroom is fully stocked, and has a spare roll, ready to be used, so that no one has to come up to you and ask you for assistance in this area. This is one of the most last-thought of logistics of any Christmas or office holiday party, but I feel it is one of the most important. Pay special attention here.. most people treat it like an after-thought.

#6 – Parking. If you are expecting a lot of people to attend, one of the easiest things you can do is move your vehicle up the street so that the true guests and park without worry.

#7 – GET HELP or VOLUNTEERS

While you’re completely busy trying to put this Christmas / Holiday office party togther, always remember, that there is someone who is ready, willing and able, to try and help out. In this case, let them try.

With these tips and pointers, I do not doubt that your holiday / oiffice Christmas will be a success…

Trees, both real and artificial in our homes?

Has anyone taken the time to think how weird it is, that we put up both real (and artificial) trees in our house during the holiday season?

TREES IN OUR HOUSES!!

What other part of nature will be next? Rocks and stones in our homes? Mud, dirt, or Turf grass?

Leave the outside where it should be…. OUTSIDE. Many fresh Christmas trees take 5 to 7 years to grow. Then we do we do? Cut them down, throw tinsel on them and call it a holiday.

How would you feel if someone cut off your leg, threw tinsel on it, and said it was a holiday?

I think the symbolic reference of a Christmas or holiday tree is important. So use symbolic materials to do it.. In the green way of thinking, we should use the same artificial tree very year. It is not uncommon to have an artificial tree last 10 years or more.

Do you use real or artificial? Have you tried both? I’d be interested in hearing from someone that use to use real, and then switched to artificial, or vice-versa.

Osama vs Obama – Too much of a similarity?

We’re all looking for Osama bin Laden. Now everyone has elected a new President, Obama. Therefore, we have Obama looking for Osama.

Has anyone else realized how strange and ironic this is?

I have nothing against the new President-elect. Infact, I think it is way overdue that the USA have a black president or a female president.

But the Osama and Obama thing is just too strange. I haven’t heard anything in the media about it. When you listen to it this way, doesn’t it seem weird to you? An Obama looking for an Osama?

The name similarity strikes me as funny. So what is the meaning behind it? Probably nothing… Or is it?

Anyway, it’s time that we do pay attention to this phenomenon, and take the time to wonder… Is this nature taking its course, or is this some sort of weird planned event that none of us is privy to?

When will the headlines come out? Where they say “Obama targets Osama?” — See? In print it doesn’t look normal…

I totally believe it is not just me.. it’s quite obvious at that this is an issue, where life is funny, and we need to pay attention to the details. 🙂