Bag of Randomness for Thursday, March 23, 2017

  • That’s my father sometime after Navy bootcamp.
  • Last night’s ‘Diff’rent Strokes’ was the one where Nancy Reagan makes an appearance for her Just Say No campaign. She did a good job, it’s like she was an actress or something.
  • Yes, I know she was an actress in Hollywood back in the day.
  • I apologize to those of you who thought I may have been taking a jab at Neil Gorsuch yesterday. My comment about him “dodging” a question about ducks and horses was made in jest.
  • I only caught the first part of WFAA’s late night broadcast, but I think I heard Pete Delkus he was going to answer viewer email during his weather segment.
  • NPR’s “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!” is recording in Dallas tonight and WifeGeeding and I will actually be in the audience. She was nice enough to surprise me with tickets. For those of you familiar with the show, I have no idea who the panelists will be, but I think I read somewhere Mo Rocca lived in Dallas at a time so maybe he’ll make an appearance.  And yes, there is a twist of oddness we are paying to watch someone that is only available via radio and audio podcast.
  • DaughterGeeding has met all the requirements to take her Taekwondo red belt test, except for one. One of her requirements is to be respectful to family, but she hit her brother twice in one day recently. We had an internal investigation into the matter and found BoyGeeding didn’t do anything to provoke her, she was just having a bit of an attitude problem. We may have let it slide if it was only one hit, but punching him twice in one day was pushing it and thought this would be a good lesson regarding actions and consequences.
  • Domino’s stock has outperformed Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon this decade
  • Red-light camera grace period goes from 0.1 to 0.3 seconds, Chicago to lose $17MOfficial: “[This] is not an invitation to drivers to try to beat the red light.”
  • Gang rape was a ‘hoax’ by bloody teen who ran into church half-naked, Denison police say
    • An 18-year-old Texas woman’s claim that she was abducted and assaulted two weeks ago were a hoax, Denison police said Wednesday. The incident caused a whirlwind of speculation in the town near the Oklahoma border after the bloody woman ran into a church wearing only a shirt, bra and underwear and lied about two black men raping her while a third held her down, Denison Police Chief Jay Burch said.
  • Jalopnik – Consumer Reports’ Worst Cars Of 2017 List Is Brutal And Accurate
    • I’m so glad I held off purchasing a Maserati Ghibli.
  • Here’s a NY Times interative article about the size and spending of the U.S. military.
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“Rogue One Melded” to “A New Hope”

It’s just fun watching Darth Vadar fight from the new movie, maybe my favorite movie highlight of all of last year.

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Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, March 22, 2017

  • For the first time in a long time, I drank an ICEE. As a child, the only times they were a possibility was when we took a road trip to Fort Worth and stopped at K-Mart where they were available in the snack bar. At the time, no ICEEs or Slurpees were available in Mineral Wells and there wasn’t even a McDonald’s. Slush Puppies were available, but they always seemed second-tier. And now I’m reminded of Dr. Evil, “You’re semi-evil. You’re quasi-evil. You’re the margarine of evil. You’re the Diet Coke of evil, just one calorie, not evil enough.
  • Spring Training – BoyGeeding had his first tee-ball practice of the season yesterday. His team is the Thunder and he’s #2.
  • The higher number of windows opened on my computer the higher my stress is for that given day.
  • Not that anyone is happy paying taxes, but I wonder what most folks are “happy” their taxes go to – public schools, national defense, [insert polarizing item here], etc.
  • I’m not sure my friend Andy likes this idea of a circular or “endless” runway.
  • Japan’s elderly offered funeral discount to stop driving
  • It’s Buc-ee’s V. Bucky’s In Convenience Store Battle – A longtime truce between the two convenience store chains has been challenged by Bucky’s moving into Buc-ee’s territory.
  • Adam Sandler Had This to Say About Seagoville, Texas Residents – Near Dallas
    • During a radio interview this morning, Hollywood actor Adam Sandler took a moment to praise Seagoville, Texas residents – a small town just outside of Dallas – who had helped him with a mechanical issue with his rental car as he passed through the city recently
    • I’m telling you, these people in Seagoville are the real deal. I’m going to move there after I retire,” Sandler said with a laugh. Sandler added later, “You have to understand, this is something that would’ve never happened in L.A.! So yeah, that’s my story about Seagoville, Texas. It’s nice to know there are still places like this in America.”
  • It saddens me he dodged the question – A Senator Asked Neil Gorsuch If He’d Rather Fight a Horse-Sized Duck or 100 Duck-Sized Horses
  • VICE – The Contentious Relationship Between Evangelicals and Hollywood – While Christian films like ‘The Shack’ are scoring big at the box office, they also incite the ire of true believers.
Posted in Personal | 8 Comments

Bag of Randomness for Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • Last night’s ‘Diff’rent Strokes’ had Dorothy Hammill as a guest start. On Friday the two episode bicycle shop child molester aired and thankfully we missed that one.
  • Shortly before the inauguration, the president-elect said, “Sure it’s a big job, but I don’t think anybody who can do it any better than I can.” Some bravado, eh? But it wasn’t said by our current president but rather John F. Kennedy to a reporter from TIME. He followed it up with, “It isn’t going to be so bad, you’ve got time to think, and besides, the pay is pretty good.”
  • Alabama May Allow Church to Form Own Police Force
    • An Alabama megachurch is seeking to establish its own police department — and a bill that would green light the force is already moving through the state senate. The 4,100-member strong Briarwood Presbyterian Church, located in suburban Birmingham, contends it needs its own police force to counter any potential threats because it is also home to a K-12 school and a theological seminary with 2,000 students and teachers.
  • Neil deGrasse Tyson did the math –  David Rockefeller’s (1915-2017) $900M in lifetime philanthropy is equivalent to donating $24,000 for every day of his life.
  • Scattershooting while wondering whatever happened to the Charles Manson murder house
    • The caretaker who lived in the guest house moved in three weeks after the murders and resided there for 20 years.
      • During an interview on ABC’s show 20/20, he said that while living there, he felt “safe, secure, loved and beauty.” He sold the property for $1.6 million in 1989.
    • Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails started renting the house in 1992 and set up a recording studio “dubbed “Pig” (sometimes called “Le Pig”) in a reference to murderer Susan Atkins’ writing “Pig” in Tate’s blood on the front door of the house.” 
      • One day he randomly ran into Tate’s sister who confronted him about exploiting her death and moved out.
        • Reznor took the front door of the house with him when he moved out, installing it at Nothing Studios, his new recording studio/record label headquarters in New Orleans.
    • In 1994, the owner demolished the house and built a replacement home called Villa Bella, with a new street address.
  • Here’s What the Original, Far Less Tragic Ending of Rogue One Would Have Been
  • Mission: Impossible 6’ Producer Says Tom Cruise Has Been Training for ‘Mind-Blowing’ Stunt for a Year
  • Sweet 16 by shoe and apparel deals – Nike 12, 2 Addidas, 2 Under Armor
  • It’s not as cool as you’d hope, but a guy put his GoPro in a nuclear reactor.
  • Losing weight won’t make you happier—but eating a balanced diet will
    • Despite the message that the happiest you is just 10 pounds away, new research suggests that improving the quality of your diet may be the recipe to protecting and even improving your mental health, not losing weight.
Posted in Personal | 3 Comments

Creating Saturday Night Live: Kate McKinnon Make-up Transition

On March 11th, 2017, the SNL make-up team had only one commercial break to get Kate McKinnon out of her Jeff Sessions character and into her “Shud the Mermaid” character. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at that transition.


Posted in Interesting, Pop Culture | 3 Comments

Bag of Randomness for Monday, March 20, 2017

  • WifeGeeding’s seventy-nine-year-old father recently rode Greyhound (long story) for a long road trip and they lost his luggage. It was found two days later.
  • Before ABC’s special on Charles Manson on Friday night, I only had a cursory knowledge about the guy. It felt weird hearing people referring to him as “Charlie” as if they were buddies. I also had no idea how involved he was in the music scene and the Beach Boys recorded one of his songs.
  • We traveled to Burleson for a wedding and on the way back tried Heim BBQ, which I’ve heard great things about. The brisket was above average but seemed a little too fatty and lacked some flavor; however, the bacon burnt ends were pretty good but I don’t think I could eat many of them though they offered a great range of flavor, char, and meat. I was impressed with the staff, they were exceptionally kind. When I was ordering I was choosing lots of samples the associate made the comment, “I’m not trying to upsell you or anything, but I’m not sure you ordered enough for you and all your family.” The restrooms were also interesting. Behind a door is a room with a community sink for about three people, and in that room is one men’s restroom and two women’s, though one had a nice changing table for a baby so that’s probably more of a family restroom.
  • I’m over-simplifying, but a lot of political headlines with the new administration are about Trump’s possible Russian ties and the accusation of Obama “wiretapping” Trump Tower. A lot of folks say this is unprecedented, but while reading my book about the relationships of presidents and former presidents, I think I found something comparable, and it involves an acting president basically accusing the previous president of helping the Russians spy.
    • Eisenhower’s attorney general, Herbert Brownell, opened an investigation into whether Truman had knowingly placed a Soviet spy named Harry Dexter White to become executive director of the International Monetary Fund. That’s right, Truman was being accused of being a traitor and was even subpoenaed to appear before the House Un-American Activites Committee. He refused and instead defended himself in a televised national address winning public support and the investigation was dropped. There’s more detail to all of this, of course, but I’m trying to condense it as concisely as I can.
  • Jake Tapper’s stock is rising, at least his popularity.
  • Popular Mechanics – The Most Gruesome Government Report Ever Written Evaluates 34 Ways to Execute a ManIn 1887, New York State appointed three men to evaluate every possible way to execute a man—which they did in disturbing detail.
    • An excerpt:
      • Under the heading of burning they relate: “An extraordinary method of this punishment was known as ‘the illuminated body’ and invented by Sefi II, Shah of Persia. The victim was stretched on a slab and fastened to it. Innumerable little holes were bored all over his body. These were filled with oil, and all lighted together. The poor victim perished in the most unspeakable agony.”
  • Thank you, Netflix, just make it a permanent feature – Netflix is testing a button for skipping the opening credits
  • Random tidbits about Angela Merkel that I only discovered yesterday:
  • I only watched a little bit of the tournament, but when I first saw Wichita State’s Conner Frankamp I thought Prince William was playing basketball. The top of their heads is identical. Also, I don’t keep up with Michigan, but their uniforms look like what the Fab Five used to wear. Maybe that’s considered retro now, or maybe that’s always been their look, or I’m just totally off on all of this.
  • Indian engineer named Saddam Hussain cannot get a job
  • has a detailed feature on Kellyanne Conway and I thought some interesting photos of her as well.
  • Another interesting tidbit from that article I posted about what will happen after Queen Elizabeth dies.
    • British royals are buried in lead-lined coffins. Diana’s weighed a quarter of a ton.
  • These interesting things recently popped up in Texas’ Atlanta State Park. – It’s a wool sower gall, created after wool sower wasps lay their eggs in a white oak.
  • Why You Should Never, Ever Put Two Spaces After A Period
  • Buzzfeed – A Federal Judge Offers A Behind-The-Bench Look At Trump’s First Supreme Court Nominee – Judge Harris Hartz, who has served with Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch for the past decade, spoke with BuzzFeed News about what Gorsuch is like to work with and why be believes some of Gorsuch’s critics have it wrong about his record.
    • Hartz disputed criticism from liberal advocacy groups and Democrats in Congress that Gorsuch’s conservative approach to judicial decision-making means he is bad news for women, people of color, the LGBT community, and the environment, among others. “He’s conservative in the sense that he takes the language of statutes, for example, very seriously. But if by that you mean you always get a conservative outcome, that’s wrong,” Hartz said.
Posted in Personal | 4 Comments

Chuck Berry on The Tonight Show, November 5, 1987

Carson had two other guests that night but Chuck took up the entire time.

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How a Working Woman Would Handle Her Kids Crashing Her Live BBC Interview

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Caption This

A North Korean soldier takes a picture of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson from outside the window during his visit to Panmunjom, the truce village near the inter-Korean border, South Korea, on Friday. (Pool photo by Yonhap/via European Pressphoto Agency)
The Washington Post
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Bag of Randomness for Saint Patrick’s Day 2017

  • I’m one of those few who still enjoys mowing his own lawn. For me, it feels good to get outside since I’m in front of a computer screen all I just feel like it’s a right of passage of owning a home. Yesterday evening was the first mow of the season.
  • Most of you know I’m very fond of my battery powered mower. It was always a hassle filling up a gas can and then trying to make it home without it spilling in the car. I’d usually place it inside a trash bag because I know if one drop of gasoline got in the interior the car would smell forever. Perhaps I’d feel different if I owned a truck. I also love how quiet my battery powered mower is and it never lacked in the power department; well, except now. The battery is near death and the manufacturer, Ryobi, no longer makes a replacement battery. That’s a major limitation, you are at the mercy of the manufacturer to supply batteries and hope they keep them in supply. So I bought a new battery powered mower which is 20 volts more powerful and I can’t believe how light it is, about twenty pounds lighter than a gas-powered mower. It was so light, five-year-old BoyGeeding was able to mow a couple rows/lines all by himself, under heavy supervision with me by his side, of course. I think I was able to cut my mowing time by about a third because of how light the mower was.
  • I see a version of this article about what will happen after the Queen’s death every now and then, but I found this part pretty interesting, it’s euthanasia.
    • “The King’s life is moving peacefully towards its close,” was the final notice issued by George V’s doctor, Lord Dawson, at 9.30pm on the night of 20 January 1936. Not long afterwards, Dawson injected the king with 750mg of morphine and a gram of cocaine – enough to kill him twice over – in order to ease the monarch’s suffering, and to have him expire in time for the printing presses of the Times, which rolled at midnight.
  • Recently Sylvester Stallone opened up about his diet during the filming of Rocky III. It was the amount of coffee he ingested which stood out.
    • During the period I only ate very small portions of oatmeal cookies made with brown rice and up to 25 cups of coffee a day with honey and a couple of scoops of tuna fish. Sounds incredible right? At the time my body fat got down to 2.9 which is a really dangerous level. I may have looked pretty good on the outside but inside it was very dangerous thing to do.
  • Buzzfeed – Great Scott! This Auto Parts Store Has A Perfect “Back To The Future” Easter Egg On Its Website
  • Buzzfeed – An Airport Security Dog Has Been Shot Dead After Breaking Loose And Running Onto The Runway – It happened in New Zealand.
  • ‘Keep going!’ Trump sends birthday letter to oldest living Pearl Harbor vet – The oldest living U.S. veteran of the Pearl Harbor attack, a 105-year-old Poway man, received a birthday letter Thursday from President Donald Trump.
  • SNL will now air live in all US time zones
    • To be honest, I thought they already did. The last four episodes of the season will be hosted by Jimmy Fallon, Chris Pine, Melissa McCarthy, and The Rock. There’s no word on musical guests, but I have a feeling U2 will close the season out to jump start their tour.
  • Matthew Perry beat up Justin Trudeau in grade school: ‘I’m not bragging’
    Friends actor said he and a classmate beat up future Canadian prime minister because he was ‘excelling in a sport that we weren’t, so it was pure jealousy’
  • Do Bay Leaves Even Do Anything? – Bay leaves are the dryer sheets of the kitchen. 
  • Mark your calendars – Monday, March 20 is Cone Day and Dairy Queen will be giving away free small vanilla cones.
  • This is a picture of one of Saturn’s moons, Pan.
  • The Atlantic – America’s Empty-Church Problem – The culture war over religious morality has faded; in its place is something much worse.
  • St. Patrick’s day factoids:

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Impressive Strength

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Bag of Randomness for Thursday, March 16, 2017

  • I hear NBC’s ‘This Is Us’ is a great television show, but I’m at a point in my life where I can no longer watch emotional television or movies because it hits me too hard. When I was younger and didn’t have much perspective or experienced a lot of perils of life, it was easy to watch that sort of stuff. Now, I just can’t bring myself to do it.
  • A fan recently sent Dirk Nowitzki a potato.
  • After watching ‘The Americans’ on the DVR last night, this image popped up on the screen. My first thought was, what is former ‘Daily Show’ correspondent Aasif Mandvi doing on WFAA?

    That’s not Mandvi but reporter Jobin Panicker.  Isn’t “Panicker” a funny name for a reporter? Anyways, here’s a picture of Aasif Mandvi.
  • Buzzfeed – Disney Princess Bikinis
  • GIF – Jedi with a GoPro
  • GIF – Don’t stop petting

  • On last’s night’s ‘Modern Family’ Haily got “the Barnicle” put on her car. I’ve never seen such a thing, but it’s an alternative to a carboot. Per TechCrunch:

    • The Barnacle is a bright yellow 20-pound piece of plastic that sticks to the windshield with 750 pounds of force. The parking enforcement officer only has to pump the device a half dozen times to stick the two giant suction cups to the glass. He sets the alarm and tracking system using the keypad built into the device. If you come to your Barnacled car and try to drive away anyway, a high-pitched alarm will sound.
    • I’ll also like to state this is a clear case of hidden paid advertisement. #PlayfullyTrolling
  • He Got a Bad Grade. So, He Got the Constitution Amended. Now He’s Getting the Credit He Deserves.
    • This story involves the 27th Amendment. He received a “C” on his paper as a college sophomore in 1982, and 35 years later he got the professor to sign a form to officially change the grade to an “A+”.
    • Most people would have just taken the grade and left it at that. Gregory is not most people. “So I thought right then and there, ‘I’m going to get that thing ratified.’”
    • “In light of the student’s heroic efforts to prove the professor and T.A. wrong in their assessment of his term paper, Mr. Watson deserves A+. Goodness, he certainly proved he knew how to work the Constitution and what it meant and how to be politically active,” she says. It still has to be stamped by some people at UT, but when it is, 35 years after Gregory wrote his paper, he’ll finally get that C changed to an A.
  • Texas woman in midst of modeling shoot when struck by train
  • Substitute teacher hid box of wine in purse, police say
  • Regarding optics, I think the top of this article has a tremendous picture of President Trump speaking to a crowd with Air Force One in the background – Trump Force One Is Ready for TakeoffAfter decades in the sky, the president’s fleet is finally getting an upgrade—unless the new passenger-in-chief adds turbulence.
    • Some tidbits:
      • Presidents weren’t even allowed in helicopters until 1956. After a Camp David evacuation drill, during which President Dwight Eisenhower’s limousine got stuck behind a truck on a winding road, the Secret Service relented on its long-standing safety objection to single-engine helicopters. The next year the Air Force procured two small, bubble-nosed Bells, similar to those seen in the opening sequence of M*A*S*H. Eisenhower took precisely one flight. It was another evacuation drill, this time in July, and he baked as the cramped cockpit’s canopy absorbed the full power of the Washington sun. When it came time that fall to take another helicopter, Eisenhower asked for a large Marine transport aircraft—and the tradition of the Marines flying the commander-in-chief was born. One of the first things they did was install an air conditioner.
      • The U.S. is the only country that provides its chief executive with helicopters around the world. That is, when heads of state of other countries go abroad and need a vertical lift, they often rely on the hosts’ equipment. When the U.S. president goes overseas, he brings his own helicopters—often in flights of three, to serve as backups, fly staff, and function as decoys for would-be assassins.
      • As dreamed up, the new Marine One could fly more people farther, faster, and at a higher level of performance than any other executive helicopter on the planet. The idea was to create a true Oval Office in the sky, with videoconferencing, a galley, and a flushing toilet, as well as heavy armor and protection from nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons. Eisenhower would have approved of the climate control: The cabin had to remain between 68F and 76F, whether the outside temperature was -5 or 100.
  • Into the woods: how one man survived alone in the wilderness for 27 years
    • At the age of 20, Christopher Knight parked his car on a remote trail in Maine and walked away with only the most basic supplies. He had no plan. His chief motivation was to avoid contact with people. This is his story
  • Snow in coming!
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