Yeah, talk to me about rights. What rights do we really have?
You have the right to remain silent, unless doing so pisses me off and I slap you upside of the head with my pistol.
You have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness? I’ll go with the last one, but as far as the first two I think that is kind of up to God.
Did the victims of baby Doc, or Hitler have the same rights? I’m not necessarily saying it’s not correct for protecting our own shores, but what rights do they have at Gitmo?
You have the right to work your ass off, be the best you can be, and hope to heck somebody doesn’t shoot you in the face. That is all.
Rights are like entitlements. They do not exist in the real world.
Have we gotten so fat and freeking Arrogant that we think the world owes us a living, and somehow is obligated to take care of us?
Let’s face it, baby boomers. We have no right to anything but to work our asses off.
There are so many of us, there is nobody left to bail us out. The days of peace love and dope in the Haight-Ashbury are over.
Face it, you are not going to be guaranteed healthcare, a sweet old peoples home with chirping birds and basket weavers, or a nurse name Consuela to come and wipe your ass when you poop your pants. Some of us are going to starve, some of us are going to croak on the streets from heart attacks, and some of us are going to stroke out.
What you have the right to do, is your best. Work your freaking ass off as hard as you can for as long as you can, treat the people you love with love, and be thankful for every breath you have the “right” to take.
And you do have the right to thank your God, however you envision that, for every good minute you’ve had.
Category Archives: Family
Yeah, talk to me about rights. What rights do we really have?
by Devon Corneal
He crawled under his blanket, squirmed until he was comfortable and pushed me to the edge of the mattress. He offered me his favorite blankie to keep me warm. I put my arm around him and he was sound asleep before I had finished cataloguing the list of things I had to do before I could crawl into my own bed. I considered making a stealthy escape but stopped when he threw his arm around my neck while mumbling unintelligibly. A sleeping 4-year old’s arm has as much strength as a soggy piece of toast, but I didn’t move. Despite my earlier desire to leave, I stayed and pulled him toward me.
I had one of those rare blissful parenting moments when everything else fades away and you appreciate the simple physical presence of your child. I marveled at the amount of heat a small boy produces when he sleeps and the ease with which he leaves the world behind. I smelled his hair. The laundry could wait.
It hit me in the darkness of his cluttered room that these days are numbered. Some night in the future, Little Dude will ask me to snuggle with him before he falls asleep, and I will have no idea that it will be the last time. I won’t know to pay attention or to try to commit every minute to memory. Days or weeks or months later, I will try to recall when that last snuggle happened. I won’t be able to. I know I will ache to slide next to him on his narrow bed, listen to him breathe and wait for the moment when he surrenders to his dreams. All of the irritations, the inconveniences and the wishing for time alone will seem insignificant in comparison to the warmth and peace of his nighttime routine. I will regret the times I hurried through bedtime and left his room even though he asked me to stay “Just one more minute, Mommy.”
It will be too late.
I just now understand that in anticipating my son’s “firsts,” I’ve forgotten to appreciate what he’s left behind. The firsts are monumental, celebrated and captured on film. I reveled in Little Dude’s first steps, jotted down his first words and am prepared to save lost teeth. There isn’t a first I haven’t recorded in some way. I’ve paid less attention to his “lasts.” I’ve ignored the finality that comes with moving from one stage to another.
I don’t remember the last day that Little Dude’s eyes were blue before they turned green. I can’t recall the last time his hair was baby soft and curly, or the last time he crawled or took a real nap. I can’t pinpoint the last time we shared the peaceful quiet of a 3 a.m. feeding, or he squealed with joy to be riding his wooden rocking horse. There will be a hundred last times to come. And I won’t know they’ve passed until there is no hope of recapturing them. I know this because I don’t remember the last day he used a pacifier or waited for us to get him from his bed rather than clomping into our bedroom at some ungodly pre-dawn hour exuberant and ready to face the day as we struggle to open our eyes. I’ve forgotten when he stopped liking sweet potatoes or saying “Pick mine up!”
Not that there aren’t stages I’m happy are gone. I don’t miss teething, two-hour feedings, biting or needing to be carried everywhere. I’m neither Pollyanna nor a masochist. Babies are darling; I’m also glad I don’t have one anymore. Raising children isn’t all warm snuggles and charming memories. Parenting can be a long, hard slog.
But for today I’m focusing on the last times still to come, even though I won’t know that they’re the last chapters until long after they’ve gone. The last snuggle. The last time Little Dude asks me to bring him chocolate milk. The last time we play fire trucks. The last time he falls down and comes crying to me with his entire body shaking, tears streaming down his face, believing with childish certainty that a kiss from me will make his skinned knee better. The last time he asks to marry me. The last time he believes in my omniscience. The last time we color together at the kitchen table. I’m not naïve enough to believe that this moment of reflection will stop me from becoming irritated, impatient, frustrated, bored or upset tomorrow when my son whines, spills spaghetti sauce on the rug or throws a fit because I won’t let him stay up late. Maybe, though, I’ll temper my response if I can remember how fleeting this all is. That for every moment I’ve prayed would end, there is something I miss.
Easy access to big data sets has handed companies a very effective marketing tool. Able to create industry relevant infographics and heat maps, statistical visualizations are an important means of transforming raw data into palatable visuals for the average consumer. It may sound simple, but there are a number of complex factors involved that need to be considered and implemented to achieve the end result of a well-rounded infographic.
Here are 5 Big Data Professional Presentation Tips:
- Think like the user. Don’t overestimate the intelligence of your audience. Carefully consider what they do and don’t know, and make a note of this before embarking on the planning phase of your infographic or heat map. Remember that the final design should always result in a comprehensible sensory process for the reader; exciting them with an array of “visual cues” leading on from each other. In other words, confusion is the equivalent of failure.
- Compression is key. As its name implies, big data is BIG. Analysis is essential to identifying the important inferences from the none-essentials. It requires the person doing the scrutiny to separate the main points from the supplementary details. To do this successfully, you’ll need to prioritise the focal outcomes, using the remainder space to supply supporting information.
- Suggest specific action. Big data usually encompasses a specific call to action. Make sure this is the standout conclusion in the testing phase of your infographic. This can be easily accomplished through highlighting trouble areas within the data sets using colour coding and similar distinguishing methods.
- Make it interactive. Allowing users to input an entry that will, upon pressing enter, generate a result, is gaining popularity. Dubbed the “interactive infographic,” these types of designs can be used as the foundations of powerful digital strategies and campaigns – keeping in mind that they need to be relevant to the primary cause/point of action.
- Use layers of data. Google Maps is an excellent instance of big data layering. The interface, which exposes layers of data upon zooming in, is the perfect of example of how professionals could incorporate a lot of information without exposing their target market to sensory overload.
Integrating “Business Intelligence” into your company is essential to making informed and cost-effective decisions. A corporate sphere that requires extensive planning and proper execution, facing the challenges presented by creation, presentation, and interpretation are worth the outcomes of this complex field of research. Big data is the way of the future – embrace this integrated realm of opportunities by displaying important investigations to your visual learners.
Bella Gray is a corporate blogger based from her Houston office space. Speciliasing in business coaching and online marketing, Gray is the perfect go-to-gal for all your company tips and solutions.
For every person that loves the pomp and circumstance of graduation day, the quirky cap and the big baronial gown, there is a person that feels like the whole cap and gown thing is a justifiable reason to give the entire graduation ceremony a miss. So where does it all come from, and is it at all necessary in modern society?
The academic raiment that people wear when they graduate is a throwback from medieval times. The gown that people wear was actually how everyone dressed back then. It must have been great for the winter but somewhat stifling in the summer. They also present somewhat of a trip/slip/fall hazard, and so universities from back then would have been subject to considerable public liability insurance premiums.
So what about the hats? Mortarboards were originally reserved exclusively for people who’d managed to obtain a master’s degree, but are now used by both undergraduates and bachelors also. They have also been used by many as inadvertent weapons throughout the years. Many a graduate has flung their ‘Bishop Andrewes’ in excitement, perhaps a bit too far in the air and a bit too inaccurately, only to see it drop via one of its points onto the head of a fellow graduate. In 2011, no fewer than 72 graduates received hospital treatment as a consequence of an academic cap injury.
So as well as being from the past, and dangerous, they are also perceived by many to be outdated and unnecessary. As time moves on and the world of education subscribes to modernity in a million different ways it becomes more and more difficult to justify the reactionary regalia that for many a stickler, underpins what university is all about.
In an education system that no longer uses chalk boards, tinkers with the formal setting of the classroom and conducts itself in virtual environments, is there really a need for the cap and gown any longer? Whilst it would seem like somewhat of an anti-climax for everyone to turn up on graduation day wearing their jeans and t-shirts, is the cap and gown really all that necessary?
Would it not be equally as smart and fitting for each of the males to wear a nice suit, each of the females something equally as smart. Maybe that is something that the cap and gown does have going for it, though. It is epicene, creating a synchronic plateau whereby the boys and the girls are all uniform. If that is all that it has going for it then perhaps it’s doomed, because there are plenty of male graduates who doubtless feel slightly as though they are cross-dressing.
There are also the cost implications of the cap and gown. Even though people are not expected to buy them, they cost a fair amount just to hire, and for what? An elongated ceremony and a few pictures. For many, then, there’s the additional logistical nightmare of trying to offload it so that the all-important drinking binge can commence. It seems that the cap and gown is a tradition that’s clinging on for dear life.
This post was written on behalf of OCVC
By Antsy McLain
It had been a rough couple of weeks.
I had just buried my father, and began joylessly exploring the prospects of life as an orphan. Mom had passed away the year before. I recalled Dad’s last days and the final, numb march of his funeral as if looking through thick, gray gauze. Pieces of that day still hung around me like stale air freshener. I could hear the voice of the pastor from the little country church Dad called home, his words blank and void of passion until the eulogy turned abruptly to an alter call. My blood still rises a good twenty degrees hotter when I think about it, especially after he mispronounced Dad’s name. Twice.
“How long do you have to be a sheep around here before the shepherd remembers your name,” I whispered to my wife as he plowed carelessly through my father’s identity.
I can still hear the three distinct gun blasts of his military send off, the triggers pulled by two middle aged reservists in uniforms three sizes past snug. The blasts rang in the air, followed by a flutter of birds and a burst of sobs from my uncle Sonny. He had held up well until then, laying to rest the brother with whom he had climbed these trees, plowed this farmland, chased girls, raced cars, and buried loved ones of their own together. When a person dies, they take a part of you with them, a part of you no one else on earth knows. Sonny was letting it go with all that gunpowder.
All of this kept flooding into my heart and washing back out, taking grains of me with the tide, and bringing back untold questions from the mysterious deep. I was caught up in a tide of discovery, of new and old being swept away and washed back up on my empty shores until I didn’t know what was me, what was God, what was real or what was counterfeit.
As they say in times like this, when it rains it pours. Life had decided, for whatever reason, to make me its student in an intense crash course that would change me forever.
When I had come home late from work around 10 PM one night, the last thing I needed to see was the lifeless body of our family pet, Moo Moo, in the cul de sac in front of our house.
I knew it was her immediately. I stopped the car in the middle of the road with the lights on, and ran to her. As perfect a dog as she was — and she was a gem — she had one fatal flaw: she chased cars. She had apparently caught one.
Moo Moo was named by our kids because she had spots akin to a Holstein cow. Black and white, part Jack Russell, part Blue Heeler, Moo Moo was a herding dog. If you’ve had a herder, you’ll know that often equates to the dangerous practice of chasing things, including cars. Two years of training did nothing to curtail the deep, innate urgings of her DNA. This was who she was.
Moo Moo and I were soul mates. She swooned when she saw me. When I would come home from work, no one else existed. She would hop up on the back of our sofa, where she could be closer to eye level, and she would wag and whine until I acknowledged her shameless treatise for attention. When we hugged, all was well with the world. Every shirt I owned at the time was speckled with short, wiry white dog hair. I did nothing special to woo her. One day as a wiggly puppy, she just looked me in the eye and latched on, as if to say, “I choose you.” We were buddies from that day forth. The kids had picked her out, had fed her, even named her, but it was clear to everyone, Moo Moo was Dad’s dog.
So, there I was, awash in the white, hot light of my car’s headlamps, sobbing over Moo Moo’s lifeless body. “No, no, no, no, no,” I said, over and over, wanting to turn back time, not only 30 minutes or an hour where she could be on the back of the sofa to greet me, but a year, or two years before when I had parents, when I had a tangible guiding force in my life, a voice on the other end of the phone that could tell me I was doing the right thing, or that I was screwing up – anything at all. This was just too hard to endure on my own, without those familiar, comforting voices. And now, it would be harder without the unconditional hug of this beautiful dog.
I carried her past the flower garden behind the house, past the swing set, past the tall elm tree where I had built a crude but functional fort with my kids. I set her gently down on the ground behind the shed. And then I went inside to tell the family. Their moans and cries broke my heart, and made me cry even harder. We held each other, pulled ourselves together and buried her together under the moonlight.
My wife took the kids inside and tucked them in, and stayed with them until they fell off to sleep. I finished the burial duties, cleaned up, and went to move my neglected car. It had shined its lights as long as it could, and now sat dark and still in the cul de sac out front. I groaned a “now what,” and went to the garage where I had a new battery. Rather than deal with it in the morning, I decided to do it then, before I went to bed. Sleep probably wasn’t going to come for hours anyway.
I took a flashlight, the battery, and the tools I’d need, and walked back to the car. I took the old battery out and installed the new one, making sure all the connections were tight. I tried to start it. Nothing. Not even a spark. I checked the connections. Nothing. I went into the house, got the keys to my wife’s car, and drove it to the front, and hooked up jumper cables. Still nothing. I checked the connections a third time. It was now around midnight, and my patience, historically short anyway, was wearing very thin.
After checking the connections a fourth and fifth time, I got in the driver’s seat, shut the door, made sure the windows were rolled up tight, and I turned the key over.
The sounds that came out of my mouth over the next 5 minutes were unlike anything I have ever heard before or since, and I’ve seen a lot of Martin Scorsese movies. I cussed myself out, calling me every name in the book; I cussed God, telling him where he could shove this life, and this earth and everything on it; I cussed out my father for leaving, and my mother for dying, and anyone else I could think of who had a hand in my immediate misery. I pounded the dashboard, slammed the steering wheel, and screamed until my voice was a raspy whisper.
Then, as the last echo of my screaming faded away, I quietly, resolutely shut the door of my car, and drove my wife’s car back into the driveway. I left the hood up to my car with the cables still attached, and went inside. I checked on the kids, who were fitful but sleeping. I collapsed next to my wife and whispered a gravelly “Goodnight,” as we held each other under a blanket still speckled with Moo Moo’s hair.
I called a tow truck to haul my car to the garage, telling them “It’s a brand new battery, and it wasn’t turning over at all, so it must be the alternator.” I expected to hear from them later that day with an invoice I couldn’t afford.
I was barely at work 20 minutes when the garage called. “Your car’s ready.”
I was dumfounded. “Already?” I asked.
“Yep. You can pick it up anytime.”
“But, I mean, I – what was wrong?”
“Who installed your battery?” the mechanic asked drily.
I weighed my options. I could blame this on someone else. I could tell this was not going to put me in a good light. “Me,” I said, flinching, waiting.
“Well, you know those little plastic caps that come on the posts of new batteries?”
“Yeah,” I lied.
Well, you have to take those off before you hook up the cables or you won’t get a charge.”
“We won’t charge you for anything,” said the mechanic, fighting a chuckle, “We found it right away. Just come by the office before 6 to get your keys.”
I thanked him numbly, and gently set the phone down on its cradle. I leaned forward and placed my head in my hands. I sat that way for a long time before I moved again.
How often I do this: blame the world around me – anything else around me – for what I have done to myself out of ignorance or pride, or simply by just being in the dark. We’re all in the dark sometimes, trying with whatever tools we have to fix something better left for the light of another day.
I picked up my keys, and the mechanic showed me the little black plastic cover, like a top hat for a little bird, and I took it from his grease-creased hands. I held the little culprit – this source of my great and horrible frustration the night before – and couldn’t believe how such a small, lightweight thing could cause so much trouble. But then again, I knew it wasn’t the cap. It was me. I put the cap in my pocket, and drove home. It sat on my dashboard for months, an amulet of sorts to remind me of the magnitude of little things. It now sits on some bookshelves in my studio at just about eye level. Beside it is a little jewelry box holding a black and white collar once worn by a herder who chose me to be her soul mate.
I apologized to God by the way, for all the things I called him. I haven’t heard back, necessarily, but I reckon he had a good laugh over it.
It can be a real hassle to manage a retirement fund. The stakes are quite high, because that fund represents someone’s life savings and is what they are expected to live off of for the rest of their life.
Getting to the point where someone has saved up enough money to retire is one thing. But that’s really only half the battle. Then comes the challenge of trying to make that money last enough years — and perhaps even do enough to where that nestegg actually grows, too. Read on for some quick tips on how to manage a retirement fund.
One of the biggest tips that makes it much easier to manage a retirement fund is to retire with enough money in that fund. Now, that might seem like common sense but many people rush into retirement with too little saved and then are unable to make the money stretch out for the length of their retirement.
Work with a money manager to make sure that there is enough money in the retirement fund to last. People are living longer and longer these days — many into their 90s — which means the money has to stretch longer than ever, too. Get some help understanding exactly how much money is needed, and how to make it last.
To manage a retirement fund is to understand all of the expenses that come with retirement. One of the big expenses is health insurance, which becomes more and more important as people age and require medical care. Make sure that the expense of health insurance is factored into any plan.
While it might not seem like a big deal now, especially if an employer is paying for insurance, it will become much more pressing once retirement hits. Health insurance can be a challenge but it does not have to be a scary thing if it is prepared for.
Lump sum vs. payout
It might seem like a good idea to get a huge lump sum from a 401(k) plan, but it is actually one of the common pitfalls of retirement. While seeing that huge amount upfront can make someone feel pretty well off, it is actually often a better idea to get a yearly payout. This can help someone budget and it guarantees that they won’t spend it all too soon.
Where to seek advice
Remember, any time that a client has a specific question about their retirement plan, a financial expert should be asked for help. There are a lot of standard replies to questionst that do not consider the specifics of a plan, growth rates and more.
Seeking advice online may seem easier, but the answers that the web provides are not as assured as the answers that are offered by an expert that actually manages the account or accounts in question.
Robert Seitzinger is a copywriter for Majestic Eagle Insurance, a Portland insurance group that can help with retirement planning.
Today’s seniors are aging differently.
Remember Grandma? When she was fifty, was she considered vibrant, active, and maybe even kinda hot? If your grandmother was anything like my own, the answer is a very definite “No!”. (Sorry Grandma.) Grandma was a terrific cook, a fascinating conversationalist, and a mean gin rummy competitor. But at fifty, she was overweight, out of shape, and didn’t expect to win any beauty contests.
Compare that with today’s Baby Boomers, who at ages 49+ command respect in all areas of life. They expect to age gracefully: to live well, feel good and to remain active and attractive.
But is that expectation realistic? At Live 2 B Healthy® Senior Fitness, we think so.
By offering fitness classes on-site at co-ops, assisted living communities, skilled nursing residences and even memory care housing, Live 2 B Healthy® Senior Fitness supports a healthy lifestyle at every age.
“It’s an exciting time to be in the senior fitness industry,” enthuses Live 2 B Healthy® president and CEO Cory Czepa. “Seniors expect to live longer and better. And the results we see show that it’s entirely possible.”
Czepa refers to the Minnesota-based company’s individual fitness tests, conducted three times each year. Test results with elderly fitness class participants, ranging from ages 68 to 105 show remarkable improvements in balance, strength and flexibility. Some individuals have shown over 200% improvement in as little as four months.
And fortunately for seniors, the company is thriving as well. Founded in 2008, the company now has a number franchise owners operating in California, Utah, Colorado, Texas, Missouri, Iowa, South Dakota, and Minnesota, and is on the path to becoming a national name.
“I wish my parents had had access to this program, and so it’s our commitment to seniors that Live 2 B Healthy® Senior Fitness will be available in every state by 2017,” comments John Meyers, director of operations.
Meanwhile, the company’s web site (www.live2bhealthy.com) offers seniors and their families tips and research on healthy aging. And franchise regions are available in many states.
 United States Census Data
She was the formidable force behind Bill Clinton during his presidency and she is currently the 67th United States Secretary of State. Hillary Clinton is not just a women of the world, she exudes sheer iron will and power that make many men run and hide. This is a seriously sassy lady who would make an awesome world leader.
Born to in 1947 in Chicago, Hillary Clinton showed an aptitude for success from a very early age. She was a firm favourite with the teachers are her primary school and excelled in her sports as well as winning several awards for Brown and Girl Scouts duties. She excelled all the way through school and continued to her 2012 goals. No surprise there.
Supported by parents who clearly wanted to see their daughter go far, Hillary enrolled at Yale University and graduated as a lawyer in 1973. Already showing a penchant for politics, Clinton did a stint as Congressional Legal Counsel before marring Bill Clinton in 1975.
Considering her ambition to forge ahead it should come as no surprise that Hillary Clinton was twice voted in the 100 Most Influential Lawyers in America. She was also the first female partner at Rose Law Firm. Clinton sat on the board of directors of several large companies in the United States, such as Wal-Mart. She became first lady of Arkansas in 1979 when Bill Clinton was elected Governor and Hillary had a hand in the positive evolution of the Arkansas Education system.
In 1994 Hillary and Bill Clinton became the United States first couple and, in hindsight for many, were one of the highly acclaimed presidential couples in American history. Hillary has shown a keen interest in the health and safety of children from the moment she graduated, and has always made a point of trying to have bills passed that worked in the favour of families requiring assistance for children. She’s still advocating these worthy causes.
In 2000 Hillary Clinton was elected a United States Senator and has been a firm favourite with the American public. She was re-elected to the senate in 2006 and in the 2008 presidential election Hillary Clinton as the first female to run for president had achieved more primary and delegates that any other female in the presidential history. Unfortunately she lost the election to Barack Obama, but she now serves as the U.S. State Secretary for his administration. Hillary Clinton is definitely a force to be reckoned with.
These days, keeping house isn’t just the function of the ‘little woman’. In these more enlightened times, men and women share the domestic duties, and the roles have become more equal. So when we look back at past eras such as the 50s and 60s – even up to the 80s – the attitudes seem frankly shocking now.
This is really obvious when looking at the world of advertising, which succinctly reflects the attitudes of days gone by. Here are four areas of advertising that will highlight the era perfectly.
The home – Like bangers and mash, gin and tonic and Abbot and Costello, there’s the wife in the kitchen. We know that times certainly have changed, and it’s not so common for the woman to be stuck at home, peering over her kitchen enamelware, cooking and cleaning for her man as much. Of course, there’s a double dose of sexism here. Hardee’s ad also implies that if you’re a man who doesn’t have a woman preparing food for you, you might as well go out for fast food because you can’t cook for yourself.
The office – The world of work was somewhere that was a male dominated environment in the 50s and 60s. Women were either secretaries or cleaners, and while there’s no shame in either role, the positions were perceived as subordinate and secondary to roles of men in business. So when Bell & Howell wanted to show off their “finest projection equipment”, it was Sabrina’s equipment that was used to sell it. I can guarantee that no one approached her on her opinion of how to use it.
Driving – Ah, the old staple joke of men being better drivers than women. No research in the world was going to stop husbands believing that his wife was a worse driver than him. As the breadwinner, Volkswagen were selling to him, not her. So if you’re going to buy a car, it really should be tough and able to handle a woman’s appalling driving skills. Oh, for the record, a researcher from Carnegie Mellon University in Michigan found that, based on miles driven, men were more 77% more likely to have a fatal car accident than women.
Air Travel – The world of air travel definitely wasn’t safe, as female cabin crew were one of the primary lures to get travelling business men to use particular airlines. I’m not sure what Czech Airlines is trying to get across here, but I can see nothing about the service or efficiency they provide, but their stewardesses are warm and welcoming in, and out, of uniform.
- Hardee’s ad – Women don’t leave the kitchen.
- Bell & Howell projector ad
- Volkswagen ad – women drivers
- Czech Airlines
TCH provides quality kitchen enamelware for the home.