Sex, Drugs and Menswear

Yesterday, while driving aimlessly through Knoxville, I came across a large billboard.

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According to the billboard, I must have missed my turn.

For who could miss the all caps advertisement shouting down at the highway the wonders of this adult establishment?  On closer inspection, the sign shows a terrific assortment of merchandise.  In case it is too small to read on your tiny phone screen, it says, “Novelties, Tobacco Acc., Lingerie, Plus Size Lingerie, E-Cigs, Menswear.”

Well, novelties (I’m guessing they don’t mean trick gum and hand buzzers) and the always exciting plus size lingerie imply sex.  I assume the Tobacco Acc. refers to the sort of pipes seen in Greenwich Village shops “for tobacco use only,” wink, wink.  So we have drug paraphernalia to go along with any upcoming escapades.

But then, everything shifts dramatically.  An enterprising manager decides to branch out.  Hmmmm, sex… drugs…  what more could we offer at Fantasy World alongside these exciting prospects?  I’ve got it!  How about an ascot or a nice pair of work boots?  What man or woman, when shopping for a glass bong (for tobacco use only) wouldn’t make a spontaneous purchase of cufflinks at the register?  From there, menswear was assured to be broadcast from the reddest billboard in town.

As my wardrobe from Manhattan has worn a bit thin, it may be time for me to buy some new clothes in the South.  I could use a new suit, you know, an adult one for interviews and such, and I may need a tie to match.  Sorry Brooks Brothers, but as everyone knows, the best way to be welcomed into a new city is to support the local merchants.

Sanctions, you’re doing it right.

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Found on a liquor store in Knoxville – “Due to Russian Aggression, we will no longer sell Russian Vodka (Until Putin Modifies his behavior)”

Good for you, liquor and wine store!  Way to take a stand!  I know where I’m buying my booze from now on.

People on both the left and the right are quick to accept economic sanctions as a punishment for poor national behavior, a punishment short of dropping bombs.  As someone who finds turning to the government a lousy choice, I hesitate to leave it in the hands of politicians.  Instead of people complaining about Obama’s unimpressive reaction to recent events in the Ukraine, sanctions can begin immediately in the social sphere through boycott.  In addition, if you want to support Ukraine, buy Ukrainian (not that I have the slightest idea what they sell, but in the internet age, I’m sure Google knows).

So many conservatives who distrust our government are quick to suggest government imposed sanctions.  The first move should be outside of the government through social shaming of those who support and do business with an aggressor.  Since when do we decide to leave all control in the hands of our government when market forces are immediately available for instant karma?

It’s not that sanctions are worthless on the government level, but why would that be the first place to turn?  Since when do governments make good, rapid and appropriate decisions?

Say China (I know, easy target) starts behaving badly.  I don’t know, invades Taiwan or pokes fun at McDonalds or some such.  We know our government will not have the political will to enact severe sanctions.  But what if China knew the public of the good old US of A was going to stop buying their goods, regardless of White House (in)action?  The public would be unconstrained and may never buy as much as they had in the past, even when the sanctions had ended.  That would be a real and serious impact that could exist outside of the weak willed that often dominate our political sphere.

Don’t get me wrong, there are decent, hard working, liberty loving types in politics, and our politicians are much better than many in other nations.  Really, there are.  Not all politicians are weak.  I wasn’t around at the time, but I hear Calvin Coolidge was awesome.

Went to a few car dealerships today

Prior to my current (inherited) car, i havent owned a car since the 90s.  Back then i drove a used 1987 VW Quantum.  It worked pretty well except for the one time my Dad took it out for a drive in a snowstorm.  He attempted to turn on the interior light, hit the moon roof by accident, and got it stuck in the open position for his entire drive home in the snow.  I was away in college, so I could put down the phone and laugh and laugh.

But, back to car dealerships…  I had heard horror stories, but this was nothing of the sort.  I have never found so many strangers whose only desire is my long term happiness.  They discussed my background, where I’m from originally, my family, my job, they even laughed at my jokes.  So polite, I felt the true glow of southern hospitality and basked in it.  At each one there was instant friendship, friends who wanted nothing more than to make me feel comfortable for life and knew the best way to bring it about.  Apparently the best way, consistent among all my new friends, is to go into debt for a vehicle that is better than true love, kittens and puppies.  Since I’m new to town, I can’t wait to make more friends, and the ones I just made have all promised to call and email me regularly.

New Republican Budget

“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.” HL Mencken

It appears, under the leadership of Paul Ryan, that the Republicans are proposing a new budget.  I have not read it, but I did read an article that hated it, so I feel well informed.  The people are to be given a choice between a budget that is guaranteed not to pass and contains real cuts to the size of the US Gov., or the proposal by Democrats, which literally does not exist as they have decided to pass no budget this year.  Oh, and apparently Republicans want to beat up old people, step on the necks of the poor and throw orphans into the snow.  So your choices are as follows:

1. Cut government spending in a bill that is certain to fail and is therefore a political maneuver prior to an election.  And when it fails, no cuts will have occurred.

2. Pass no budget, continue spending like there is no tomorrow, and don’t worry about the math because… hey, what could possibly go wrong?

3. Go get breakfast at Waffle House.  Their cheesy eggs are awesome and the hash browns aren’t too shabby either.  And I am certain to get some of the most interesting people watching of my day first thing in the morning.

Police Squad!

I just received in the mail a copy of Police Squad! The Complete Series and I can’t wait to see it.  I saw the series many years ago after the Naked Gun first came out, so it’s been some time since.  As Leslie Nielsen was one of my favorite comic actors, I can look forward to a spectacularly enjoyable time wasting 3 hours in my immediate future.Image