Thursday, August 22, 2013

Being One Is Not The Same As Having One, But It's A Blurred Line

I'm a little late to the party, but I still feel compelled to share some thoughts about this
Just FYI, this isn't Alan Thicke,
Growing Pain's Dr. Jason
Seavor.  I don't think he
would be amused.  At all.
summer's stuck-in-your-head-catch-yourself-singing-nasty-lyrics song.  There has been lots of buzz about both the song and its accompanying video.  Yes, Blurred Lines.  I would bet that by this point Robin Thicke himself is sick of singing it and hearing it.  Yeah well, serves you right dude, you started it.

I managed to ignore the song the first half of the summer.  This is mostly because I happened to, for some reason, only ever catch a bit or piece of it.  It never got my attention and I'm not a Robin Thicke follower, so I just didn't pay it much mind.  Then The Party stepped in.  He told me he had watched the uncensored video for the song when he went to see what the big deal was.  The big deal is that the video has mostly naked girls dancing around.  Teeny tiny bottoms and no tops.  Party seemed more amused by the Jimmy Kimmel spoof of the video (though no doubt he wasn't at all troubled by naked boobs in the other one).

Off I go to see if women everywhere should be outraged.  And then, before I found the video, I found the best thing!  Okay, not the "best thing," but way better than the video.  I found the Jimmy Fallon and The Roots sing along with Robin Thicke video.  Totally Beyawesome!  Jimmy Fallon and The Roots have a few videos like this.  They are in a little tiny room with classroom instruments and a guest "star" and they all sing whatever song together.  Jimmy Fallon could not be happier. Honestly, go watch these videos. 

So, after I see this video and have a sudden interest in Robin Thicke and The Roots (I am always impressed when people can actually perform live and do a good job) and wish I could be friends with Jimmy Fallon, I decide I should still go watch the uncensored video of the song.  I should have stuck with Jimmy and The Roots.

I don't even know where to start except to say the clearly the entire song and video was conceptualized and created by a room full of 15-year-old boys.  I bet it was like an AP project or something for them.  If I was Robin Thicke's wife I wouldn't even be annoyed he's all over naked girls, I would just be shaking my head and asking "Dude, what is wrong with you?"

The Blurred Lines video is horrendous (big, giant whistle for the video).  Here is why:
1.  It is poorly lip-synced.
2.  Despite the topless girls, the video isn't sexy.
3.  There doesn't seem be any actual reason for the girls to be topless, they are just dancing around.
4.  Even uncensored, you can't really hear all the words to the rap.
5.  I looked up the words to the rap - it's filthy. (The rap in The Roots video is great!!  And clever and cute).
6.  It's a boring, all white set.  Except for the silver mylar balloons that spell out "Robin Thicke has a big d*ck."  Really?!  Someone gave that the green light but still has their job?  You see why I think teenage boys were involved?  We are totally adding a smack to that whistle.
7.  Of course, they had to make a clean version, you can't show the original anyplace like MTV or VH1.

As I spouted off all the things wrong with the video to Boy and The Party, they laughed and laughed at me (Boy even posted several rude and mocking tweets about me and my opinions).  Pretty much, Party informed me that there are naked breasts in the video, so no one cares about that other stuff.  Boy then chuckled and elbowed Party, "But Dad, they can't show it on MTV."  (more snorting and laughing)  Then he looked at me and said "They play videos on MTV?" (side holding and chortling)  Yes, you guys are so funny!  Not.

As for the song itself, it certainly is catchy, no doubt.  There has been some buzz that it is a copy of Marvin Gaye's "Got to Give it Up".  You can also feel the "Kiss" by Prince vibe working with the falsetto/regular voice thing.  The "original," "non-tribute" part of the song, the rap, is a disaster.  As mentioned, the words are awful, it's not rapped well, and they have to bleep out so much of it, it's pointless.

For extra good measure, if you are not generally offended by the song's words, part-way through there is a line "You're the hottest bitch in this place."  Because that is inappropriate and offensive, when the song is played on some radio stations they voice over it with the word "ho." I don't even understand that.  It defies understanding.  "Ho" is not better!  (We could spend all day discussing the other words in songs that the radio stations, for some reason, thinks are fine for general listening).  Almost forgot!  "I feel so lucky, you wanna hug me.  What rhymes with hug me?"  That last part is for those of us who didn't "get" what he was trying to say (no doubt, more work by teenage boys).  In an odd twist of things, Robin doesn't come out say "f*ck me" even in the uncensored video.  Apparently, that is over the line.  I guess the line is less blurred when it comes to the f-bomb.  Who knew?

Oh yeah, the final verse throws in marijuana smoking.  Really, this song has something for everyone.  And PS, where is Tipper Gore when you need her?

I guess Robin is not happy that
our view of his (possibly) big
business is being blocked.
*Song is not appropriate for children.
*Video is poorly done and stupid.  
*Jimmy Fallon version of song is very fun (ignoring that the song is still not really g-rated, but ev).
*I really want to go see The Roots now (who are from Philadelphia, so clearly we are meant to be friends).
*I kind of want to know if Robin Thicke does have a big d*ck.
*Please know that I am using the work "d*ck" instead of you know, the real word, because I don't want to start getting spam comments or obscene e-mails when this post comes up for people searching for "big d*cks."  Ditto "f*ck."
*Jimmy Kimmel's spoof of the video is funny, but there are no naked breasts if that affects your decision to watch it.

The End

Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Halfway House For Kids Reentering Society

This is SB before her release from prison camp.
She is the one with the ball.  She is with her
"campies' (yes I made up that word and it cracks
me up) so she is happy and pleasant.
Yeah, so SB is back from overnight camp.  We counted down the days.  We couldn't wait to see her.  I believe we made it about 24 hours before I had to check the camp website to see how many days until camp starts next year (313 as of today).

After the initial round of hugs and pleasantries, all questions and comments were met with disdain and looks of disgust.  Why would we ask that?  How would she know?  What do you even mean?  Why do you care?  Then add the nodding, patronizing smile, eye roll and "okay" when we tell her she needs to stop being so prickly.  When we get further annoyed she huffs "I'm not even doing anything!"  Sigh.

I think the problem is that the kids spend 7 weeks at camp with no parental supervision or daily input.  I also think that we need to start treating campers like released convicts in an attempt to help them more smoothly reenter society.  You know, help them be a success on the outside.

It really does make sense if you give it some thought.  Like people in prison, campers have limited access to the outside world.  They can only call home a once or twice (if at all) the whole summer.  They only get one family visit for the whole seven weeks.  The only news or outside information they get is what camp tells them or what they get from letters.  The food is passable, but not fabulous.  The beds and bunk houses are clean, but hardly luxurious.  Ditto the showers.

I am well aware that camp is waayyyyy better than being in prison.  Plus, it has the added benefit of not
This the halfway house
bus.  Note the campers look
 a little disoriented.
being something you have to be embarrassed about when people ask where your kid is.  

I have figured out how to deal with these released convicts home-bound campers.  They should go to halfway houses for campers for a week.  It's perfect because when overnight camp ends, there is still a week of day camp left, so it gets them home right when everyone else finishes up with their summer activities.

At the halfway house, the campers would have some chores and the house mothers would keep a little bit closer tabs on them than the counselors at camp did.  For instance, the housemother might ask if they've brushed their teeth or washed their hands (at all this week).  The house mother would make the campers store their clothing on shelves and in drawers and not keep everything randomly strewn around the floor, as the campers had become accustomed to doing.  The housemother would also give extra chores to any campers who rolled their eyes or who gave snotty answers to reasonable questions.  She would slowly reintroduce computer and phone time.  That way, when the camper got home, she wouldn't have to spend the first 48 hours on the computer and phone with the people she just left.

Prisons Camps of yesteryear.
Everyone is dressed the same and huddled
together, likely complaining about the food.
Essentially, each bunk at camp is their own little prison gang.  The halfway houses would have campers from all different camps, so each camper had a few friends, but wasn't surrounded by all the members of their gang their camp friends.  It would help them get used to not being surrounded by 8-10 of their closest friends 24/7.  This would also foster the desire to go home to the familiar because campers don't like anything new or anything to change; they would be horrified by new people from other camps with whom they were supposed to mingle.

Once the campers were released to their parents, they would be happy to see their parents and be ready to focus their full attention on their family and home friends.  Once they had been camp-detoxed, their homecoming would be a pleasure for all and neither parents nor children would have to immediately start the countdown for the next year's camp date.

Monday, August 5, 2013

That And A Dollar Will Get You A Cup Of Coffee

We can make this another $25,000 Pyramid Category - Things That Are Worthless.  Or, perhaps better named - Things That Require A Throat Punch.  How cool would it be if we could actually get them to make an episode of the show with all the categories we want?  The possibilities are endless!  Things That Explain Why Your Neighbor's Husband Is Sleeping In The Yard, Reasons Why Your Kid Is Out In Public With No Pants, Things You Find In A Mom's Mini Van...

As fun as this game would be (and I am totally trying to figure out a way I can make this into a real game and become rich before someone steals my brilliant idea), I started out writing this post because I felt there was a real need for a list of topics that need to be banned as well as people who need to shut the f@*$ up.  If I had addresses, I'd be sending out DTC STFU bracelet (considering a reprint of those).

STFU List 

Right up there with fat free
ice cream or cheese.
1.  Ted Nugent.  I refused to even read past the headlines because he is such an ass.  He called Stevie Wonder "brain dead" for boycotting Florida and he is saying Zimmerman should sue Travon's parents.  Everyone is welcome to their opinion, but you are an ass.  Obs, whistle and smack.

2.  The Boston Bomber.  This is more aimed at the media and their need to plaster his picture everywhere anytime there is mention of the story.  An especially big smack goes to Rolling Stone Magazine.  This guy and his brother killed and maimed innocent people.  They have destroyed people's lives and have added one more thing all of us have to worry about when we gather together for community and charity events.  No one, but the victims in particular, should be forced to see this guy's face everywhere they look.  The public doesn't need any more "get to know you/ life story" information on Tsarnaev brothers.

3.  All Kardashians.  And anyone married to or sleeping with them.  I assume no explanation is needed.

4.  Paula Deen.  My God woman!!  Whatever you did or did not say/do 25+ years ago would not be biting you so hard in the ass right now if you would JUST STOP TALKING.  And for the love of cheese, hire someone to do damage control for you and do every single thing they tell you to do.  Oh, and JUST STOP TALKING.

5.  All news from American sources regarding the Royal Birth.  We get it, Kate and Will had a baby.  Snore.  There is not one thing about that requires this level of reporting, speculating or commentary.  The birth of this baby does not affect Americans in any way!  It doesn't even affect anybody British, they just have some weird interest in continuing to have a Royal Family.  I do not care what Harry thinks about getting knocked further out of the running for King.  I don't care what diet and exercise regimen Kate plans to follow to get back into pre-baby shape.  I do not want to see weeks and weeks worth of baby pictures with thoughts on which former monarchs the baby might resemble.

6.  Anthony Weiner.  Anyone who is friends with Anthony Weiner.  Anyone who wants to talk
I'm sure Giselle
or Tory Spelling
can shed some light.
about Anthony Weiner.  Your last name is Weiner and you texted pictures of your junk - you will forever be a joke.  And really, really yucky.

This is all I have for now.  Definitely let me know if we need to add anyone.  I'm sure we do.  Who's the latest celeb mom whose lost all her baby weight and will probably write a book telling us the best way to parent now that she's had one baby for 5 minutes and is an expert?  Whoever that is, she can be on the list.  Also on the list can be whatever sports figure has completely trashed his reputation and risked his career this week by being an asshat.  

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Things That Are Ill-Advised

I only wish they still had the $25,000 Pyramid on TV because this would be an excellent
This category could
be for the adult version.
category.  Below would be the clues.  Since the show's not on, you can just use the clues as a handy list of things you should really think through before you do.  You might even want to laminate the list and carry it with you.

1.  Most Hawaiian Shirts - unless you are in Hawaii, the trend has kind of passed.  There are only a few I have seen recently that worked.  They mostly look like ugly drapery that has been made into shirts.

2.  Most Print Pants - of all print pants in the entire world, only about 1% are actually cute.  Add to that that only about 1% of the population is going to be able to pull off said pants.  That's a pretty low chance for a good match up (I'm sure there is some formula for an actual percentage, but I don't have that kind of time).  Sadly, there are a lot of people who think they are in this elite group.  To avoid further cringe-worthy mishaps, I think they should just stop making print pants altogether.

3.  Singing any Kind of Top Hit Song or Song by an Iconic Singer - just don't.  I am talking about any song that is so awesome and/or well known that everyone knows/loves it.  Unless you can kick its ass or come up with a completely new way to do it (you can't), don't.  I don't care if you are on TV, doing bar karaoke or at your cousin's wedding.  Look at the Glee kids.  They are really good singers, but their Don't Stop Believing pales in comparison to the original.  Steve Perry owns that song.  Put on the list anything by Mariah, Whitney, Celine or Aretha.  Also, for you guys out there, some songs only work because of the singer. If you are not Kenny Rogers or Neil Diamond, then you can't sing The Gambler or Sweet Caroline.

Just so you know, when
your kid asks why, it's
not because he's smart
like Einstein.  He's annoying,
like all other kids.
4.  Answering any "Why" Questions Past the First One - if a child asks "why" in response to something you've told him or a request he's made, feel free to give a reason.  The first time.  All further "whys" will result in your blood pressure going up and the child in question's health and safety being jeopardized.  Kids think the "Why" game is a fun sport.  They can play all day and they won't even notice that your face is turning purple.  They're clueless/evil.

5.  Doing Anything Other Than Walking After You Eat - you are not 20 anymore.  I don't care if you are in great shape, you're old and your body cannot digest and do something else at the same time.  Even walking away from the table is a stretch.  Any attempts to run, exercise, ride amusements or dance are going to end poorly.  And you know what, throw sex in there too.  It would probably make you throw up.  Don't say I didn't warn you.

6.  Stocking up on Food Your Family Likes - you might as well burn your money.  If you buy something once and your family likes it, you'll often buy it again.  If it goes over big a second time you will think you are being smart to buy a larger size or extras.  Sucker.  Trying to save money or save yourself an extra trip to the market absolutely guarantees that no one in your family will ever eat or drink said item again.  Fact.

I will be thinking up other some other Pyramid categories because this is almost as fun a game as News/Not News.  I will be also be thinking of how we can turn it into a drinking game since I don't think anyone is going to pony up 25k for us to use as prize money.

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