Saturday, September 15, 2007

Ricky Shambles Does Vacation

St. Lucia

Now now, don't cry. You knew it was going to happen.

The time has come for me to pack it up and head to an all-inclusive resort for a week. Yum.

The time has come for you to go through my archives, chuckle at my sparse beginnings back in January of 2006, sigh at how I've hooked into blogging like a whore to meth. You can also finally get around to the Feedblitz thing on the left side of the blog and get my posts sent directly to your inbox in time for morning coffee.

I'll return with a hot, steamy, fresh post on Monday, September 24th. Until then, drive fast and cuss often.

I love you all!

Photobucket's Strange Terms of Service

In my post Larry Craig Resignation Betting Pool! I posted the following image:

Larry Craig Graph

Only in the original version, the triple lobe of a poorly-scrawled cock-n-balls ornamentally occupied the blank space on the right. The childish drawing violates Photobucket's terms of service (I know because out of hundreds of images, the only other one deleted was - you guessed it - a graffiti penis), but Bob Allen with a dildo in his hand is totally on the level. And Firefox marks "dildo" as misspelling. Curious.

Sanctity Through Suffering and Emo for Christ

I was listening to 740AM Sacred Heart Radio while out and about on my daily errands - specifically St. Joseph Radio Presents - and I heard one of the speakers/priests tell a story about a woman who was being told by her doctors to have an abortion because testing had shown that her child would be born with massive birth defects. The priest, during consultation, convinced the mother to have the child with the reasoning that God gives life and God takes life away.

The child was born severely retarded with a "smashed in face" and could not breathe on his own due to the malformations. He was named Milagro (Miracle) and lived in a hospital, pierced with tubes, for almost 4 months. After his death, the priest explained that the mother did not need to pray for Milagro, but to him in hopes that she, too, would go to heaven and be reunited with him. "That's the joy of our faith," he said.

I could write 30 different posts about the different ways that this story exhibits the off-base morality of the Catholic Church, but I thought I'd focus on what bothered me the most: The priest, in telling this story, likened the mother's suffering to that of Mary suffering while watching Jesus on the cross (you guessed it - Happy Feast of the Seven Sorrows Day!), but at no point made mention of the suffering of the child. This man used his influence and the mother's belief system to create four months of physical suffering for a newborn and four months - and far, far beyond, I'm certain - of emotional suffering for the mother. And it was completely avoidable.

At what point do we recognize that what belief systems may say is the right thing to do is not always the right thing to do? At what point does humanitarianism trump religion? And why do we need to ask these questions?

I also learned that the personal, self-inflicted suffering I incur by listening to talk and religious radio is just masochism (even though the priest called it sadism) because I am not uniting the suffering with the suffering of Christ. Take note, emo kids: suffering can be channeled to save your soul - Emo for Christ has it right!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Teaching English in China

No, you will not get these five minutes of your life back:

[Alternative YouTube Link]

Don't Enlist

From the joys of

[Alternate YouTube Link]

This soldier needs our support. His message is too important for us to just shrug our shoulders.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

My Father, My Sister, My Uncle, My Heroes

I know, I know. I start building up to that 200th post, I'm soon to be on vacation, and I disappear for 2 days. I don't usually dig deeply into my personal life, but this story deserves to be told.

My Uncle Ken (mother's side), a Viet Nam veteran, has been on dialysis for 8 years due to two failed kidneys. If you've ever had a relative who has had to go through dialysis, it's a sad, slow disintegration of hope and health and quality of life.

About a year and a half ago, my father started talking about and then quickly going through the testing to see if he was the proper match to donate to Ken. He was not, but was able to locate a paired donation program. This is where my father and uncle do not match, but they enter a pool of many other donor/recipient pairs that might fit. If it works out, my father would donate to a stranger and that person's friend/family member donates to my uncle.

After a year and no luck, about 4 months ago, my youngest sister had an inkling, a calling to throw her hat into the ring to see if she would be a match for Ken. They quickly found that she was a perfect match.

Fast forward to Tuesday, September 11th, 2007. My sister went into surgery early in the morning, soon followed by my uncle. A few hours later, my father was wheeled in for his own donation to a an anonymous recipient. After 17 hours in the hospital, all three had been moved through recovery and into their respective rooms. Both donations had gone off without a hitch, and the doctors said that as soon as my sister's kidney was hooked up to my uncle, it quickly turned pink and started producing urine on the operating table. And that's about as good as it gets.

Yesterday my father and sister were up and walking despite the normal post-op pain. Ken will be a little longer to heal, but all indications are pointing to initial success.

It's not just talk. And I couldn't be prouder.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Write Your Senator About Gen. Petraeus

Have you written your senator about the war in Iraq, about the Petraeus report hitting the Senate today and tomorrow? You should. I did.

Here's my letter. Read it. Then find your representatives and write and call and call them out.
Dear Senator Brown,

I lived most of my life in Cleveland, OH, and while I missed last November's election living in North Carolina, I was pulling for you. Now living in Cincinnati, I am glad you were able to prevail; you would've had another vote from me.

I only mention this because I voted, as many Americans did, primarily out of frustration at the complacency of a Republican-ruled Congress holding strong to the pole of President Bush's war flag; It is a flag that illegally drove us into Iraq and will - with recent administration media marching orders - drive us into a conflict with Iran.

We were tired of it. The Democratic Party took power. Now we're getting tired of the Democratic Party. You were supposed to bring the troops home, but it's politics as usual in Washington: back-scratching and sweetheart deals and the frontrunners of our party for the next presidential race parroting "we just don't have the votes."

I call shenanigans, because it's much nicer than using 'bullshit' in a letter to my State Senator.

As you are well aware, today and tomorrow brings Gen. David Petraeus to the Senate to deliver an admittedly White House-tweaked report on our 'progress' in Iraq. Almost 4,000 dead Americans is our 'progress;' our brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters, who would rather be at home, fighting against other people's brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters who would rather be in heaven. How do we win that fight?

Chances are you will hear that it's working a little and, hey guys, why don't you just lay off and we can do this again in March and Grumble, grumble, watermelon, watermelon, hrumph, hrumph, "we don't have the votes"...okay.

We win the fight not by fighting but by diplomatic, "be the bigger person" policies. I beg of you: Shut Petraeus down. Then tell the other democrats in the Senate to grow a set and provide only the money it will take to bring our troops home; that is what you were all elected to do. Finally, fix the Congressional emasculation that occurred before you were elected and do everything in your power to prevent an invasion/strike on Iran.

The only way we will win in 2008 is by proving we are different from the 2001-2009 BuCheney War Machine Tour. And right now, Ron Paul is looking better than Clinton or Obama.

Senator Sherrod Brown, end this war.

More on Cincinnati's Baby-cookin' Lady

Thanks to commenter dmvnana on my last post on Mom Bakes 2-Year-Old in SUV, Walks Free, I was prompted to further outrage and tracked down this terrifying information from the Cincinnati Enquirer:
UNION TWP. - The day Cecilia Slaby died wasn't the first time her mother left the 2-year-old alone in a car, according to police reports made public Wednesday.

Brenda Nesselroad-Slaby was warned by a former administrator at the preschool attended by Cecilia's 5-year-old sister, Allison, not to leave her toddler in the car by herself.

A parent had complained about seeing Cecilia left in a car last winter.

A teacher at the Compass School in Loveland told police that twice in the two days before Cecilia's death she heard Nesselroad-Slaby describe leaving the child unattended in a car.

Teacher Tara Phillips told police that on Aug. 21 Nesselroad-Slaby arrived at 5:10 p.m. to pick up Allison.

"She told Allison to hurry up because the baby was in the car," Phillips wrote. The same thing happened the next day, Phillips said.

"We were acting out a story when Ms. Slaby came to pick up Allison about 3:05," Phillips wrote. "Allison asked Mom if she would stay to watch her part. Mom stayed, and they both left at 3:15. Mom didn't go to check on the baby."

Debbie Wolf, a former Compass School administrator, told police that after the parent expressed concern last winter about a baby left in a car, she told Nesselroad-Slaby "that her child should not be left in the car alone. Mrs. Slaby apologized."

Wolf told police the incident prompted the school to warn parents in its newsletter that "no child should be left in a car unattended."
A couple of things to note here: The law in Ohio states that you can't have negligence without endangerment, and endangerment requires intent to harm. Apathy, forgetfulness, stupidity, even if repetitive, even if in abundance enough to make you want to scream at the world and punch the wall, is not enough to send someone to jail in Ohio. Ohio Revised Code even defines Involuntary Manslaughter - something I would've thought would fit the "I didn't mean to kill my baby" defense - is only applicable in the case of committing or attempting to commit a felony or misdemeanor. And as we saw in the last article, because of lack of intent, neither of those works either; they cancel each other out.

Hamilton County Job & Family Services is looking into whether she is a threat to her other daughter. They have a 24-hour "Child Abuse and Neglect Line." Let's throw that one on the barby as well.

HCJFS Child Abuse and Neglect Line
(513) 241-5437

Clermont County Prosecutor's Office
(513) 732-7223

Glen Este Middle School
(513) 947-7700

West Clermont Local School District
(513) 943-5000

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Lucy, Daughter of the Devil Returns!

DJ Jesus

Yes, it's finally happened. Lucy, Daughter of the Devil [LDotD Wiki] returns to Cartoon Network!

It's on tonight (technically Monday morning) at 12:15am. Set the DVR. Or stay up late, you jobless saps on our economy (jealous much).

Either way, as Cartoon Network says on the Adult Swim site, "Watch it right now or we'll take it away again."

Check out the pilot. It is worth every second:

[Alternative YouTube Link]

And then watch it tonight.

UPDATE: As expected, it was fucking brilliant!