Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Facebook Foibles

I'm new to Facebook, so I don't understand all of the little nuances, but I can already see that the whole Facebook experience is going to present some problems for me.
For instance, I am friends with a lot of people on Facebook who I really don't even know. Sometimes they put something interesting up there, and I am compelled to comment. But, when I do, I'm sure they're saying, "Who the hell is this person?" "I'm a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend....." is how I want to reply, sounding even dumber and making the situation even more ludicrous.
Then, I have all these people asking me to be their friends, yet I don't know them. I see their friend request, and I let it sit a few days, and then I feel guilty and say "Okay. I'll be your friend." But, I know nothing about them and usually just end up looking at their baby pictures or photos of their kids spewing food or their grandma making what looks like either a jello mold or moonshine. What's the point?
And then all my friends invite me to do all of these stupid, time-wasting things on Facebook, like take an IQ test, or play Internet poker, or hunt for ducks (what is that all about?). I have no desire to do any of these things! Don't these people work? I hope they don't think I'm being rude by not responding. I don't dare hit the "Ignore" tab, because if there's anything worse than saying no, it's ignoring someone. People hate that. It's like not returning a phone call, essentially.
Then, sometimesI get curious about one of my so-called new Facebook "friends" and start looking for their stuff. Pretty soon, I know a lot about this individual, yet they know nothing about me. Recently, I was at a party when such a person entered the room. I casually walked up to her and told her that I was on her Facebook and then began outlining all of the things we had in common, obviously information I had gleaned via Facebook.
"I went to San Jose State just like you, I have a dog and I used to be a standup comic...etc...etc." To say she freaked out is an understatement. She could not get away from me fast enough! "I'm just trying to be nice," I said to myself. It wasn't like I was hitting on her...or was it?
Then I realized--Oh my God--she probably thinks I'm a Facebook Stalker!
Then there's the re-finding of old friends on Facebook. I have found that aspect of the site to be very overrated. A few friends have tracked me down, and at first I was kind of excited. Until I talked to them and realized that time changes everything. They were stranger; different from before and eventually the communication tapered off and disappeared altogether. Whoever said that you can never go back was right!
Facebook can be fun. But, it can also be very confusing. Once I learn the ground rules, I can see that it might have some value to me. But, right now, I'm just a Facebook newbie; an adolescent to the site, you might say. I'm going through that acne, braces, puberty stage in the world of Facebook, but soon I will be a pro at it. In the meantime, however, the whole thing can be rather awkward at times.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Diet Pills: Choosing Can Be Confusing..

Gandhi never had to worry about such a thing as a diet pill. He never had a weight problem, so it just never came into the equation. But, if you're not perpetually skinny, like Gandhi, you may just require the help of a good, healthy diet pill that will not adversely react to your system and that will help you lose the weight you want to shed. Gandhi was a great man. He helped make the world a more peaceful and compassionate place to live. He didn't need diet pills. But, maybe you do.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Poor Mona Lisa!

Paris, France--It was revealed today by art experts that the Mona Lisa actually had a very severe skin problem. Unknown until recently, art analysts cleaned the painting for the first time, revealing a series of zits all over Mona Lis'a face and forehead. Art expert TJ Denarz announced the incredible finding. "After cleaning this painting with a special non-invasive solvent, we were able to surmise that Mona Lisa has acne," he said. "This is a very significant discovery that is a real shock to the art world. Fortunately, acne technology has progressed in the last 100 years, so if Mona had been around now, they could have easily alleviated the condition. Today, we have sophisticated methods like microdermabrasion, that prevents this type of condition from developing."

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fat Burners Work!

There are a lot of opinions out there in the blogsphere about whether fat burners work or not. Well folks--I am here to tell you that indeed they do! If you're looking to burn fat with a safe, reliable fat burners, you need to know all the facts. It's important that you do ALL your homework before choosing the fat burner that's right for you. Don't get stuck with an inferior product. That's NEVER a smart move. If the Fat Boys (pictured above) had known about the best fat burners out there (or if the fat burning technology was what it is today back when they were eating and rapping up a storm) these unfortunate chubsters wouldn't be obese now. Plus, they would have been able to enjoy more of that pizza!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

It's Alive!

We went to Alive! the other day and to say that I was reticent is putting it mildly. I must admit, I am not exactly what you’d call a disciple of this raw food movement. I am still very comfortable and quite used to food that has been cooked. I will take a boiled carrot (al dente, of course—I gotta have that crunch) over a raw one every time. I like sushi and steak tartare, but I’ll opt for the cooked versions over the raw ones every time.
But, when we visited Alive! recently, we were more than pleasantly surprised. Described on their menu as a “serene and sophisticated dining destination for raw, vegetarian, animal-free cuisine using only the freshest local, seasonal, and organic produce,” we were anticipating a bunch of rah-rah tree-hugging environmentalists preaching “save the planet” while serving us this barely edible, extremely bland fare. Not so. Everything we sampled at Alive! was delicious, packed with flavors and featured organic produce and ingredients that are local, seasonal and regional.
The restaurant’s modern Zen dining room and hidden urban garden made us feel supremely comfortable almost instantly. The knowledgeable and very professional wait staff at Alive! are true followers of the raw food movement, but they aren’t pushy about it—they know their stuff and can answer any and all of your inquiries about the food; but only if you ask, which is nice. Sometimes I like to be educated about what I’m consuming, and other times I just want to be left alone to eat it without a narrative.
First we tried some of well-known specialties at Alive! These are the dishes that Chef Leland Jung is most known for, so we were anxious to sample them. I always like to experience a place’s signature dishes, so we had the open-face avocado peppercress sandwich (amazing!); their sun dried tomato shiitake mushroom torte (man-o-man!); the signature sweet sesame ginger zucchini ribbons with seasonal vegetables and walnuts; (oh, the flavors!); and then capped it off with an amazing candy cap mushroom cheesecake (I know, it sounds weird, but it is so incredible, you HAVE to try it!).
Prices are fairly reasonable at Alive! with soups and starters running, $10–$12, and entrees going for $12–$20. I’ve paid a lot more for food that wasn’t even half as good as what you’ll encounter at Alive!
They also have an extensive, very smart wine list at Alive! The restaurant has Chris Tavelli, Yield Wine Bar, San Francisco as their wine consultant, and he’s one of the best in the Bay Area, so you can be certain that the list is extensive, deep and top-tier in every way.
The most amazing thing is that EVERYTHING we ate was 100% raw. The freshness of the ingredients coupled with the astute flavor combinations made for a very memorable meal. Now I can see why Alive! has gotten so many positive reviews and has been called a “leader of the Raw Food movement” in the Bay Area and beyond. We’ll be back here again and again, because not only is the food very healthy…but it’s also very, very good.
1972 Lombard Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 923-1052

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Congress Carefully Considers Cash 4 Clunkers

You know that old Studebaker your Uncle Freddie has in his back yard? The one that makes strange noises and smokes like a paper factory every time he takes it out for a spin? Everyone knows someone who has an old beater like Uncle Freddie’s.

Well, if you can convince old Freddie to give the vehicle to the government and buy a hybrid, for instance, he might just benefit from a stimulus package designed just for people like him who are holding on to old cars that would be better for the environment and everyone in general if they were taken off the road.

If a proposed bill to give consumers turning in old beaters cash vouchers worth as much as $5,000 to buy new, more fuel-friendly cars passes, Uncle Freddie will be in the pink and the Studebaker will be history.

This is the type of forward-thinking innovative legislation we need right now. Getting old fossil fuel-only burning cars off the highway is beneficial for everyone involved. Consumers get a price break on a new car. A fuel-efficient vehicle is added to the American fleet. The dealer selling the car makes a much-needed profit on the vehicle. And the salesman working for the dealer makes a hopefully healthy commission and keeps his tenuous job yet another day. I mean, I’ve heard of a win-win situation, but this is a win-win-win-win situation.

Read more about the Cash for Clunkers stimulus program, as reported by the Detroit News:

A wide-ranging program that would give consumers turning in old clunkers cash vouchers worth up to $5,000 to buy new, more fuel-efficient vehicles was introduced this week in Congress.
The bill aims to boost car sales in the midst of the recession, help struggling consumers buy new cars and cut pollution by taking some of the oldest, dirtiest cars off the road.
An earlier version of so-called “cash for clunkers” incentives ran into union opposition that it could end up favoring imports. To avoid that problem, this new measure awards an extra $1,000 for vehicles assembled in the United States.
The bill proposes giving consumers vouchers to buy new, more fuel-efficient vehicles in exchange for turning in vehicles at least eight years old. The program is dubbed the Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save bill, or CARS Act.
Sutton noted that 60 percent of vehicles in the United States are old enough to qualify. The bill would award higher vouchers for vehicles assembled in North America -- up to $5,000 -- versus up to $4,000 vouchers for vehicles assembled outside North America, and would not apply at all to vehicles made outside North America. The proposal was endorsed Tuesday by Detroit's Big Three automakers and the UAW.
To qualify, consumers would have to buy a vehicle more fuel-efficient than their current car or truck. The new vehicles also would have to be priced at $35,000 or less.
The bill would offer a $7,500 cash voucher starting in 2010 for plug-in electric hybrids that get 100 mpg or more. Car owners also could turn in their vehicles in exchange for a mass transit voucher worth up to $3,000.
Rep. Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township, is among the initial co-sponsors.
GM chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner told reporters in Washington Tuesday that a bill to offer cash for older cars -- often dubbed "cash for clunkers" -- could benefit the auto industry.
"These kinds of programs can have a huge impact," Wagoner said, saying it could boost consumer confidence. "It would be very helpful to have something like that here in the United States."
"The 'CARS Act' legislation is a win-win-win for consumers, the environment and energy independence," the company said in a statement.
"By providing incentives to purchase a new vehicle, the legislation would help reduce consumer costs, jumpstart the economy and help support millions of good jobs in every state across the nation."
Alan Reuther, legislative director for the United Auto Workers, said the union also supports the bill. "We believe it will stimulate sales of new vehicles, and thus help the industry and create jobs for American workers," Reuther said.
The bill could help speed the improvement of the fuel efficiency of the auto fleet. Automakers must increase the efficiency of their vehicles by at least 40 percent to a fleet-wide 35 mpg by 2020.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Does Life On the Edge Start in Outer Banks?

If you have never heard of Outer Banks, North Carolina--you should! Take a moment to do a little research about this beautiful region of the country and you won't be sorry. Outer Banks has it all-great beaches; fishing; all types of watersports; boating; sightseeing and more. Known for their great lighthouses (like the Corolla Lighthouse in the photo featured above), Outer Banks might just provide you with that top-tier vacation experience you're looking for. Life in California (especially here in busy San Francisco) can get to be too much at times, so let's take this Sunday morning to thank THE BIG GUY for creating a place as wonderful as Outer Banks, North Carolina. (And while I'm saying this, I'd also like to add one more thing--Go Michigan State!)

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Travel Health Insurance: You're Gonna Get It Because You Gotta Get It!

Travel health insurance, also known as International Medical Insurance, provides high-quality, comprehensive coverage for emergency medical costs that occur while you're traveling to, residing in, or visiting a foreign country. Did you know that? Because I never knew what it was until I was asked to blog about it. After doing some research, I was pleased to discover that travel health insurance isn't that expensive and is really necessary if you're going to travel, especially abroad. The only way you can get peace of mind while traveling is by purchasing this very specific type of insurance. I bet the individual(s) in the vehicle above wished they had bought travel health insurance.

BrooWaha: The Demise of a Citizen Newspaper

More than two years ago, I began writing for a citizen newspaper called BrooWaha. I instantly took to the format and before I knew it, I was submitting more than 10-12 articles per week, using much of the content you'll find on this blog.

When I started, BrooWaha (or "Broo" as many of the contributors call it) was great. It was fun to post articles and interact with many of the colorful characters that write on Broo. I am now the most-published and most-viewed writer in the history of BrooWaha. I'd like to thank Ariel, the Founder of Broo, for giving me more exposure than I could ever get through Life On the Edge.

Well, for no apparent reason, BrooWaha has fallen off as of late. If the site isn't dead, it's at least very sick. In its heyday, there were a ton of very talented writers submitting great new artices each week. It was fun judging other people's work and vice versa.

But, the site lost a lot of its writers and with it, much of its readership, apparently. The comments are shrinking and the articles are few. And now, since last week, I haven't even been able to post an article, something I've done on the site 269 times.

I don't know what happened to BrooWaha. But, I sure will miss it.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Diamond Hoops Get the Props

I am looking for a nice gift to give my fiancee on her birthday next month. Many people are suggesting things to give her. One individual mentioned diamond hoop earrings. I like it. They're cool, hip, not too extravagant price-wise and I think Angelina would really like them. It's so hard to buy gifts for women--I mean, how long can you do the flowers-candy-jewelry thing? I don't have enough $$ to buy her what she REALLY wants--like a Lexus, a vacation in Italy, all kinds of expensive hand bags, etc. So, I guess diamond hoop earrings might just be the way to go. Buying the right gift is so important. Believe me fellas--if you blow it buying the wrong gift, you'll pay for it for many years to come!

I Love Vegas!

For those who know me, I don't gamble anymore. But, back in the day, I used to live in the casinos and maintained a high-roller status for quite some time. Ahhhh, those were the days--limos, suites, parties, parties and more parties; free food, free drinks, free fun from every corner of the City of Sin. But, alas--those wonderful days are over..for good. Now I don't drink, I don't gamble and I am getting married in just 7 weeks. Those wild times are definitely a thing of the past; which is a good thing, because if I had continued on with that crazy lifestyle, I would probably not be alive today. But, that doesn't mean that you, my readers, can't still have a blast when you go to Vegas. Check out the great Vegas vacations that are on the market right now. And think of me when you have the time of your life!

This is One Expensive Mutt!

My pit Shelly loves hundreds in her belly!