Friday, January 20, 2017

The GOP vs ISIS: A Comparison

After reading yesterday that the Trump administration planned to eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), as well as privatizing the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (which is a bit of an oxymoron), ostensibly as part of an effort to reduce government spending (even though eliminating all three of these programs would barely make a dent in the federal budget), I thought to myself, 'Huh, you know who else hates the arts and wants to destroy them? Radical Islamists (aka ISIS)!'

That led me to wondering what else Conservative Republicans (cutting arts funding was the brainchild of Conservative thank tank Heritage Foundation) and Radical Islamists had in common. So I did some research and created this handy little chart. And gee whiz! The GOP and ISIS have way more in common than we thought!

[Click on the chart to get a better/larger view.]

Also, while poking around the Internets (looking for a map I saw a while back showing the United States as a bunch of -stans*), I came across these two maps of the world.

This first one shows Ronald Reagan's view of the world, back in the 1980s:

The second map illustrates Donald Trump's view of the world in 2016:

Pretty interesting, no?

*If any of you find a link to that map, please send it to me.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

My Trump inauguration playlist

If I was the music director at one of Trump's inaugural balls, here are the songs I would choose. Feel free to suggest your own via the Comments section.

Meghan Trainor, "Lips are movin":

"If your lips are moving, then you're lyin', lyin', lyin', baby."

Shaggy, "It wasn't me":

But she caught me on the counter (It wasn't me)
Saw me bangin' on the sofa (It wasn't me)
I even had her in the shower (It wasn't me)
She even caught me on camera (It wasn't me)
Thompson Twins, "Lies":

"Lies, lies, lies, yeah..."

Eurythmics, "Would I lie to you?":

"Would I lie to you, baby, would I lie to you? (Oh, yeah)"

Fleetwood Mac, "Little lies":

"Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies..."

And I've always loved this clip from the movie Pillow Talk....

"You lied, you dog. And you'll be sorry. Uh-huh."

Though if someone actually offered me a ticket to attend Trump's inauguration, this would be my reaction:

And I ran
I ran so far away
I just ran
I ran all night and day
I couldn't get away
BONUS CLIP for everyone attending a Women's March:

Nancy Sinatra, "These boots are made for walkin'"

You keep lyin' when you oughta be truthin'
You keep losing when you oughta not bet
You keep samin' when you oughta be a'changin'
Now what's right is right but you ain't been right yet

These boots are made for walking,
And that's just what they'll do
One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you

UPDATED: I really hope they show this clip from From Russia with Love on the Jumbotron at Trump's inauguration...

but I'm guessing they won't. Sad.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Great and Powerful Trump?

I am not the only person to think of the Wizard of Oz (the character and the movie) when watching (or reading about or listening to) the President of Trump (the Organization, who is about to become the next President of the United States.*)

As some of you may recall, Stephen Colbert had a recurring bit on The Late Show in 2016 titled "Road to the White House" (which is where that image comes from), which featured Trump as the Wizard in his Wizard of Oz parody.

But as we get closer to the Inauguration,* and I hear about Trump's various rantings and promises, I keep harking back to that scene from the movie where Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, and the Cowardly Lion confront the Wizard....

Tell me if this dialogue seems eerily prescient (or familiar).

DOROTHY:  If you were really great and powerful, you'd keep your promises!

WIZARD: Do you presume to criticize the great Oz? You ungrateful creatures! Think yourselves lucky that I'm giving you an audience tomorrow instead of 20 years from now!


WIZARD: Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain! The Great and Powerful Oz has spoken!

SCARECROW: You humbug!

DOROTHY: You're a very bad man!

WIZARD: No, my dear, I'm a very good man. I'm just a bad wizard.

Now substitute "Press" and/or "Democrats" for "Dorothy" and/or "Scarecrow" and "Trump" for "Wizard" and "Oz" and "president" for "wizard" (in that last sentence) and PRESTO! It's like L. Frank Baum predicted Trump over 100 years ago!

For those of you who didn't slavishly read every Oz book (like I did), the "Wizard" was actually a humbug, "a willfully false, deceptive, or insincere person," who was blown to Oz in a hot air balloon, and falsely worshiped as a great man and made leader of the kingdom,

However, when the Wizard is finally revealed as not a great man but a humbug, he is sent on his way, back to whence he came from -- succeeded, briefly, by the Scarecrow and finally by Ozma of Oz, the rightful ruler of Oz, a benevolent, compassionate leader, adored by her subjects, who refuses to resort to violence.

So maybe there is hope for us yet.

*I think I just threw up a bit typing that.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

And now a word about bras

Or rather bralettes. What we old folks used to call bras (making bra sort of a retronym, like corded phone and cloth diaper.)

Bralettes, i.e., bras without molded or padded cups or wires, are apparently all the rage. Especially at Victoria's Secret, which dominates the lingerie market (with a 61.8 percent market share -- who knew?). Which I find highly amusing.

For YEARS, all bras (or nearly all) were "bralettes." Then came underwire bras, and padded bras, and pushup bras, and sports bras, and t-shirt bras... and, finally, bralettes, aka basic bras (albeit in a variety of colors and lace).

I guess everything old is new again.

Though how many women, especially those over the age of 21 or who've had a kid, really want a bralette?

I don't know about the rest of you ladies, but as a lifelong member of the Itty Bitty Titty Committee, who nursed a kid for 12 months, I enjoy a little padding and pushing in my brassiere. And I bet most women feel the same way. Though, clearly, there is a market for bras without all the bells and whistles -- or wires and molding. (And I do think the front-close bralette is pretty, if not practical.)

But ladies -- and gentlemen -- let me know what you think (via the Comments). Do you prefer your brassieres to lift and shape (and supplement -- what the lord has forgotten, stuff with... foam)? Or do you fancy something that is "all you" (for better... or worse)?

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Hasta la vista, American manufacturing jobs

Much of President-Elect Trump's campaign centered on bringing back manufacturing and other blue collar jobs to the United States, by getting companies that had shipped factories and jobs overseas, or to Mexico, to keep their plants or factories here -- and to deport all those illegal immigrants supposedly taking good ole American jobs.

The problem is, it's not immigrants or foreigners taking or eliminating good ole American jobs, it's machines -- robots, programmed to do the work of several men (or women) in much less time. 

So if Trump really wants to bring back American jobs -- to humans -- and prevent the cyber apocolypse, he needs to take steps now. Though it may be too late....

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Will Barbie ever be President?

While strolling through the Clearance section at a Florida Walmart the day after Christmas, I came upon this, the Barbie President and Vice President dolls:

My first thought was: Wow, bet Barbie is really bummed she lost out to Tanning Bed Ken and Evangelical Ken. My second was, Wow, Mattel made Barbie President and Vice President dolls? Who knew? And my third thought was, oh what could have been. Now here lies (or stands) Presidential Candidate Barbie in the Clearance section, selling for $19.

I have continued to think about those Barbie President and Vice President dolls, which, sadly, I did not buy. (I know, I should have.) So I decided to search for them online and found the official Barbie President and Vice President website.

And ladies, you will be delighted to know what Mattel believes is the way to inspire young women to seek higher office: Good fashion sense!

Just read the descriptive copy on the Barbie President and Vice President page (and weep):
From campaign tales to election events to decision-making moments, these partners are ready to inspire stories around leadership in polished outfits worthy of the White House. Barbie doll as President takes the lead in a red and white jacket with smart black detailing, a classic blue skirt, sparkling earrings and black shoes. The Vice President doll is a strong second-in-command wearing a yellow peplum jacket, black pants, black shoes, a beaded necklace and black eyeglasses. Play out a world full of storytelling possibilities and career opportunities with this powerful duo ready to lead young minds into imagination because with Barbie, you can be anything.
Yes, young ladies, you can be anything -- as long as you are fashionably dressed. So inspiring! If only Hillary had dressed better -- and had Barbie's figure! Then maybe Walmart would have been discounting Tanning Bed Ken for President dolls.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas is for the birds

Welcome to another episode of J-TWO-O's Wild Kingdom. This week we will be focusing on the birds of Sanibel, Florida, home to the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge.

For those of you unfamiliar with Sanibel, the island has two major claims to fame: some of the best shelling in the United States and some of the best bird watching. So for someone like me who loves hunting for seashells and has discovered a passion for bird watching later in life, Sanibel is paradise. And this year, I got to spend Christmas day on Sanibel doing two of the things I loved the most, shelling in the morning and bird watching in the afternoon.

While the shelling was a bit of a disappointment, the bird watching was not. Not only was Wildlife Drive free for Christmas, but Ding Darling was swarming with birds -- from a crowd of ibis to a pod of pelicans to a bowl of roseate spoonbills to a flight of cormorants.

Sadly, I was only able to get good photos of a handful of these fine feathered friends, due to my zoom lens not being able to zoom enough. (I called out to several birds to fly over next to me, but they did not listen to me.) So look for another bird post in the not-to-distant future.

[To find out the names of the birds, hover over the photo.]