Monday, July 31, 2006

Ten Simple Rules for Dating My Daughter

Rule One: If you pull into my driveway and honk you'd better be delivering a package, because you're sure as hell not picking anything up.

Rule Two: You do not touch my daughter in front of me. You may glance at her, so long as you do not peer at anything below her neck. If you cannot keep your eyes or hands off of my daughter's body, I will remove them from your body.

Rule Three: I am aware that it is considered fashionable for boys of your age to wear their trousers so loosely that they appear to be falling off their hips. Please don't take this as an insult, but you and all of your friends are complete idiots. Still, I want to be fair and open minded about this issue, so I propose this compromise: You may come to the door with your underwear showing and your pants ten sizes too big, and I will not object. However, in order to assure that your clothes do not, in fact, come off during the course of your date with my daughter, I will take my electric staple gun and fasten your trousers securely in place around your waist.

Rule Four: I'm sure you've been told that in today's world, sex without utilizing a "barrier method" of some kind can kill you. Let me elaborate: when it comes to sex, I am the barrier, and I will kill you.

Rule Five: In order for us to get to know each other, I am told, we should talk about sports, politics, and other issues of the day. Please do not do this. The only information I require from you is an indication of when you expect to have my daughter safely back at my house, and the only word I need from you on this subject is "early."

Rule Six: I have no doubt you are a popular fellow, with many opportunities to date other girls. This is fine with me as long as it is okay with my daughter. Otherwise, once you have gone out with my little girl, you will continue to date no one but her until she is finished with you. If you make her cry, I will make you cry.

Rule Seven: As you stand in my front hallway, waiting for my daughter to appear, and more than an hour goes by, do not sigh and fidget. If you want to be on time for a movie, you should not be dating. My daughter is putting on her makeup, a process which can take longer than painting the Golden Gate Bridge. Instead of just standing there, why don't you do something useful... like changing the oil in my car?

Rule Eight: The following places are not appropriate for a date with my daughter:
Places where there are beds, sofas, or anything softer than a wooden stool.
Places where there are no parents, policemen, or nuns within eyesight.
Places where there is darkness.
Places where there is dancing, holding hands, or happiness of any kind.
Places where the ambient temperature is warm enough to induce my daughter to wear shorts, tank tops, midriff T-shirts, or anything other than overalls, a sweater, and a goose down parka zipped up to her Adam’s Apple.
Movies with a strong romantic or sexual theme are to be avoided; movies which feature chainsaws are okay. Hockey games are okay, too, as are baseball games.
Visits to old folks' homes are best.

Rule Nine: Do not lie to me. I may appear to be a potbellied, balding, middle-aged, dimwitted has-been. But on issues relating to my daughter, I am the all-knowing, merciless god of your universe. If I ask you where you are going and with whom, you have one chance to tell me the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I have a shotgun, a shovel, and five acres behind the house. Do not trifle with me.

Rule Ten: Be afraid. Be very afraid. It takes very little for me to mistake the sound of your car in the driveway for a chopper coming in over a rice paddy near Hanoi. When my Agent Orange starts acting up, the voices in my head frequently tell me to clean the guns as I wait for you to bring my daughter home. As soon as you pull into the driveway you should exit your car with both hands in plain sight, speak the perimeter password, announce in a clear voice that you have brought my daughter home safely and early, then return to your car - there is no need for you to come inside. The camouflaged face at the window is mine.

There are only ten rules, so I expect you to be able to recite them to me. If you cannot remember them, we will result to alternate means. I am aware that having them tatooed on you would be cost-prohibitive, but ink will wash off. May I suggest my wood burning tool?

Saturday, July 29, 2006

I had no intention of ever posting anything like this, but I was trying to think of a city in Florida synonymous with retirees and stumbled over this article:

STDs Running Rampant in Retirement Community

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Talk about egos. It wasn't enough for John Kerry to come home from Vietnam and accuse every other person in Vietnam of being a war criminal (but not him, of course--after all, he earned three purple hearts), now he thinks he has the master plan for the world.

Via Toni (owner of the best legs in Bloggerdom), a new height in Kerry's delusional "I'm King of the World" ego: "If I was president, this wouldn't have happened". Yep, big guy, I'm sure that you'd have kept the world under control. No more killing Israelis just because they're different (the territory thing is beyond dispute because Palestinians have no actual "homeland", either), yep, if you were president the sun would take a few days off and cure global warming, too. Hell, I'll bet if you were president there'd be no more tsunamis, either.

How about some specifics, Mr. Haircut--Just how would you have prevented the Islamic hatemongers from attacking Israel between your visits to the salon? Talk is cheap--"Wouldn't have happened if I was president". Well, then, just how and why would it not have happened? Do you have a magic wand that suddenly makes Islam actually the "Religion of Love"? Can you magically make the Arab world stop hating their Semitic brethren?

Didn't think so. G'night Johnny. See you at the beauty parlor.
I know that I've visited this subject before, but it deserves clarification, especially since the left hates Bush so much that they'll make an issue out of anything.

We on the right didn't much care for the Boy President, Billy "Can I Look Up Your Skirt" Clinton, but the vitriol unleashed against Bush is ridiculous, and much of it is utterly unwarranted--it's just pure hate, which I thought the left declaims.

Anyway, the stem cell debate hit the news again last week when Bush vetoed a bill to expand federal funding of fetal stem cell research. To make things more dramatic, it's his first veto.

Let's take things step-by-step: First--Bush did not outlaw fetal stem cell research. Repeat after me: Bush did not outlaw fetal stem cell research. The hate wing of the Democratic party wants you to believe that he quashed all fetal stem cell research. He did not. He only said that the government will continue funding research on several established cell lines (big surprise, kids--the government is still funding fetal stem cell research), but won't fund research on any new lines.

Not a big surprise--the government has been cutting back on all sorts of expenditures ever since the Clinton recession (don't believe me on that one, look it up). And fetal stem cell research has shown zero potential. Why should the government fund a dry hole in an era of cutbacks?

A primer on stem cells: Stem cells are "undifferentiated" cells. In other words, they haven't yet become muscle cells, skin cells, eye cells, etc. In theory they are like sheet metal, which can be hammered into a particular shape. Theoretically they can be coaxed to become a particular sort of cell by exposing them to specialized conditions which force them in one direction or another. In other words, theory has it that a stem cell can be grown so as to become a cell that could bridge a gap in a severed spinal cord.

But, it doesn't work that way. There have been some positive results in stem cell research, but in every case it has involved adult stem cells. Yes, there are adult stem cells. They exist as peripheral blood cells, which are much less numerous than red and white blood cells, but exist nonetheless; and in adipose tissue (fat). Adipose tissue is in no short supply these days and at any rate, once obtained, stem cells can be cloned to become a cell line, making them a commercially available product for any biotech company to obtain and work with.

Fetal stem cell research is a bust. I don't know why, nobody knows why, but they just don't work. But to say "we don't need to be drilling this dry hole anymore" is to be instantly labeled "anti-abortion", the 21st century equivalent of "Nazi".

There are two reasons for this. The primary reason is that there is a number of scientists making damn good livings playing with fetal stem cells. To this day they have absolutely nothing to show for their efforts, but to call them on it is to break their rice bowl. They need the grants, they need the money, and they'll be damned if they'll admit they have nothing to show for it. Instead, they intimate that anyone who is against their research is a Luddite or, gasp, anti-abortion. The second reason is that fetal stem cell research mitigates abortion. It's more palatable if the "byproduct" goes to biotech research.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Thought I was done with baseball two weekends ago when I threw my keys at an obese guy whose hair, beard and physique make him look exactly like a garden gnome. I kid you not--picture the "roaming gnome" from Expedia or whatever it is, add 400 pounds and a self-serving ego equal to a Clinton, and you have this guy.

Well, turns out we're sponsoring the state senior league tournament. We spent five evenings and Saturday morning getting two fields ready. I have no idea how much food we unloaded, but we unloaded 240 lbs. of ice just for Saturday.

This is a small state, so everything is relative, but some of the the teams are driving as much as five hours to get here, and the tournament will last six days. Many are checking into the few hotels we have, at personal cost.

Kinda makes me glad my son opted for a high adventure Scout experience.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

One of my pet peeves is highly paid newspeople who just can't get it right. Some months ago the local paper wrote an article about a guy who was deploying with the "82nd Engineer Armored Tank Division". I wrote an email to the editor explaining that there are no engineer divisions and "Armored Tank" was redundant. I found an 82nd Engineer Bn (SEP) stationed in Germany which was no doubt what the "journalist" was referring to. Our small town newspaper is run by big city liberals, and he didn't even deign to reply to my email.

Now I just turned on the TV to find Greta Van Susteren reporting on the events in the Middle East. To be fair, she probably makes her cool half million or so reading scripts wriiten for her by others, so I can only half blame her for reading reports as she stares into the camera with that lopsided stroke-looking visage. But enough is enough. She just said that she was going to report on Israeli tanks "firing deep into Lebanese territory". Well first, tanks mostly fire line-of-sight, and they certainly don't fire "deep". Second, the armor they showed was not tanks, but self-propelled artillery. Which can "fire deep". I you're going to make six figures times two, at least get things right. It's like that Geico commercial with the Cro-Magnons--"Next time do a little research".

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Children aren't stupid. They're less experienced, but not stupid.

Some time ago my son read the book "Blackhawk Down". I probably should have sat down with him after he read it and talked about certain things, but I never did.

Today we drove down to where the wife works to look at a vehicle. Looked at it, test-drove it, etc. Then I put the kids back in the truck and we drove out of the parking lot. As we drove out we passed a car bearing a bumper sticker proclaiming "When Clinton Lied, No One Died". Refreshing to see someone admitting that Clinton is a pathological liar, a bit less encouraging to see that some people still need to call Bush a liar weeks after we unearthed some 500 cannisters of gas.

As we drove past the car my son (spontaneously--not prompted by me) said "Well, Clinton lied and people got killed". I started thinking Khobar Towers and such, but he followed up with this observation: The soldiers in Somalia said they needed armored vehicles, but Clinton told them they didn't need them and they died because of that.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006