Friday, November 20, 2015

Man On The Moon

In a day in time when we have all become much too jaded and disconnected from the world around us, sometimes the inspiration we seek can come from the most unexpected places. We are constantly bombarded with messages of buy, buy, buy. Spend, spend, spend. Spend everything you have on the material things that at the end of the day, really don't mean that much and you probably can't afford anyway.  Now at this point, I should say that I am a believer in capitalism. There is absolutely nothing wrong with making money. I would never begrudge anyone anything they can get, as long as it's legal. At some point though, you have to ask yourself, "When is enough....enough?"  This is never more evident than it is during the holidays.  Here in the United States, while those department stores, car dealers, and electronic shops are hounding us for our money, there is one department store in England that is reminding us that it doesn't have to be that way and that they do still have a soul.

 John Lewis first opened it's doors back in the mid 1800's as a drapery shop and has grown over the years to become one the Britain's premiere retailers. While their success hasn't come without it's fair share of controversy, they do one thing that you don't see many American retailers doing.  Every year during the holiday, they, for the most part, forego a substantial  portion of their normal advertising in favor of emotionally drenched messages of hope, peace, and love. Those ads are almost always tied to some charitable organization in England and are designed to make people think and motivate them to take action. These ads are some of the most creative and effective the marketing industry has ever seen.

This years campaign is called Man On The Moon and has the tag line "Show someone they're loved this Christmas."  A partnership with AGE UK, John Lewis' Man On The Moon commercial and marketing campaign is designed to raise awareness and funds to help older people who alone, lonely, depressed, and sometimes go months at a time without talking to another living soul.  It even has a Twitter hashtag #ManOnTheMoon.

Take a couple of minutes and check out the commercial. It's probably the best Christmas commercial most Americans will never see.


There is absolutely nothing anywhere that says you can't make money and do good in the world at the same time. John Lewis is a great example of that.  Maybe someday some of our high profile American companies will figure that out.

Til Next time...........................

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Dogs Love Peanut Butter, But........

Dogs and peanut butter seem like a match made in heaven.  They love the taste of it and we love to watch them eat it.  It makes for a great treat and is a godsend when it comes to masking certin medications.  However, there are several stories floating around social media and other websites about the use of "xylitol" in certain brands.  Xylitol is a sweetner that is used in sugar-free gums and supposedly harmless to humans. Now we learn that Xylitol can be deadly (in the form of liver failure) to dogs.


 Sara Sandrik of ABC30 in Fresno recently did a story with  Dr. Leah Hill, owner of the Animal Medical Center in Merced. It's well worth a watch.  Click to the story here.  

According to the website Preventive Vet, there are five companies presently known to manufacture peanut butter with Xylitol. "These are the five companies (in alphabetical order): (1) Go Nuts, Co., (2) Hank's Protein Plus Peanut Butter, (3) Krush Nutrition, (4) Nuts 'N More, and (5) P28. While these are "specialty butters" that are mostly sold in nutrition stores and online (currently), the subtle presence of xylitol in these butters definitely highlights the importance of reading ingredient labels on products you bring into your home, and especially doing so prior to sharing anything with your pets and if your pets ever get into anything they shouldn't have."  Read the rest of Preventive Vet's story here.  

Bottom line, if you love your dog like we love ours. Make sure you read the label before giving Fido that treat or use peanut butter to mask medication.  Their life may depend on it.

 Til next time.........................


Saturday, November 14, 2015

We Stand Together

In the days after 9-11 the people of France, and Paris in particular, stood squarely shoulder to shoulder with America in her hours of darkness.
Today as France, and again Paris in particular, enters into a three day period of National Mourning after yesterday's hideous terrorist attack across that nation's capitol, it is time once again for us to come together and show support for those under attack from an unspeakable evil than many continue to deny.

The Black Knights of @goarmywestpoint stand with France.
Posted by College GameDay on Saturday, November 14, 2015
Beautiful.
Posted by Leilani Münter on Saturday, November 14, 2015
Today we all stand together, not as Americans and Frenchmen, but as human beings. Brothers and Sisters in the midst of a chaotic world turned upside down by an evil that again, many still want to deny. Together we will persevere. Together we will overcome. But today we stand together in spirit with thoughts, prayers, and positive energy during France's National Mourning


Til Next Time...........

Friday, November 13, 2015

Droning In Fireworks!

Wow!  Just Wow!!!! That's about all we have at this point. Just be sure to watch in HD and full screen. You won't be disappointed. We promise!!!



Til Next Time..............

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Finding Our "Way Back Home" To Music That Really Matters




 Rod Stewart has always been one of my favorites.  His stuff from the 70's  & 80's was the best.  In recent years though, I've kinda drifted away from his music. There are always too many "ooh shiny"  moments to keep me distracted. Those "trendy," "safe," and "well tested" songs will get you through today, but they typically don't stand the test of time to the point where you actually go seek out new stuff from an artist 20 years later.  No?  When did you last look for or find a new A-Ha or Dido record?  But I digress.  This week I discovered Rod Stewart's new album called Another Country.  It is a great album that warmly reminiscent  of some of his earlier work.  It has a very old school Celtic sound with a little reggae thrown in here and there.  One of the songs that really grabbed my attention was Way Back Home.  As ballads go, I'm usually not a fan.  But this one really grabbed me.  Maybe it was father-son relationship aspect in the lyrics, maybe it was the struggle for survival in WWII that got me, or maybe it was the promise of finding the way back home through out the song that got me. Whatever it was, it sure got my attention in a big way.  Since radio has chosen to pretty much chosen to ignore the album and this song in particular, I will share it with you here.  Enjoy!!!





Til Next Time............

Sunday, September 6, 2015

George Harrison "My Other Favorite Beatle"

A little Sunday ear candy! Next to Paul McCartney, George was always my favorite. Reminds me of weekend road trips, walks on the beach, and a time when music was real!  Enjoy!!




Til Next Time...........

A Class Act



In the world of sports, heroes come and go.  In the NFL few position players, except for maybe the quarterback, have the ability to "turn the tide" in a big game like a good kicker does.  In San Diego, for the last several years, that man has been Nick Novak. This weekend when the Chargers made their final roster adjustments leading up to week one of the regular season, we learned that  Nick Novak would no longer be wearing the Charger Blue and Gold.  It was a jolt to the system to say the least and I'm still not sure I understand it. At the end of the day, what is done is done.  Nick has been a big part of the Charger success in recent years and in the hearts of the fans will always be a Charger.  Not only is Nick a fan favorite on the field, but much like his late teammate Junior Seau, he is a class act and a much loved and respected member of the community as well.  We wish Nick and his family nothing but the best wherever the future takes them.





Thanks for all the great memories Nick.  You will be missed!

Til Next Time.............




Thursday, September 3, 2015

A Changing of the Guard

When Grimm first came to us, all he wanted was to make friends with our cats. Mandu was the oldest of our cats and the only one who would give him the time of day....so to speak. Now it appears Mandu may be spending her final days with us and like a true friend, Grimm is right there by her side keeping a watchful eye on his old friend.  One friend commented to me this morning that it seemed like, especially these days, that animals act more human than many humans do.  Thinking on that statement, I'd have to say she's right. So tonight we'll circle the wagons, show Mandu the love and affection she's shown us for the last 17 years and say goodbye.


..........In her earlier years.





Goodbye Mandu. We love you ol girl! 

..........Til Next Time

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Perfect Christmas Gift

I know it's only June but yesterday, during one of those rare weekdays off, I was thinking about Christmas gifts.  What would the the coolest things I could get (within my budget) for the coolest people in my life.  There are a few of them and while I by no means have figured it out yet, my trip to the Sacramento Zoo yesterday did provide some inspiration when it comes to the annoying ones on my list.  The lump of coal thing is way overdone (and over-rated) so I, being "that guy" think I have come up with the perfect gift for the most annoying person on anyone's gift list.   LOL  I think this will work just fine!

video

Oh yeah, this will go over real well and I probably won't have to worry about them being on the list next year.



Okay, so I'm PROBABLY not that big a jerk........but I guy can daydream can't he?

Til Next Time.....................




Friday, June 5, 2015

Is This June or March

This has gotten to the be strangest year in recent memory where the weather is concerned,  Normally in June, we're already well into the the 90's near 100 and are certainly seeing no rain.  Not this year though.  We've had several days with showers and the temperatures have been in the 70's and 80's for the most part. This is the kind weather we see in late March. Yesterday was no exception.

This is what we saw about 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon.  It looked like the sky was going to open up and rain for 40 days and 40 nights. It didn't quite work out that way, but we did get a few showers though.  Just enough to make the roads slick and a mess on the windshields. GRRR!


It would have been nice to get a little more to help with the drought, but we'll take what we can get wherever we can get it.  


Til Next Time.................


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Ride Captain Ride

Just a little Thursday ear-candy to get us in the right frame of mind. Enjoy!!!



Til Next Time!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Jon Stewart Slams Media Over......Caitlyn Jenner!

Setting aside for the moment whatever personal feelings we may or may not have about Bruce Jenner's transition into Caitlyn Jenner, it has become all too painfully obvious that the media has gone off the deep end on the topic. Borderline out of control. In his typical hilarious style, Jon Stewart has also gotten sideways on the topic too. Not over Caitlyn though, but rather over the media's treatment of her and women in the public eye in general. For better or worse this is a story that isn't going away anytime soon and as usual, we can count on Jon to point out the insanity of the way these kind of stories are presented to the public by the media. Watch for yourself, decide, and tell us if you agree or disagree............ Til Next Time.............

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Just One Of Those Things

Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.  At least that was what I was always taught growing up.  That said, I'm going to anyway.  And when you find yourself sing this song tomorrow at work......YOU'RE WELCOME!



Until Next Time...............

If You Can't Be On The Beach....

Maybe this is the next best thing.  Butte Creek Canyon is a great  little hiking, biking, and fishing spot just a few minutes east of Chico, California.  Close enough that you can get to town in a hurry if you need too, but far enough out that you can get lost real easy if you're not careful. There are several great fishing and swimming spots and several trails perfect for the hiker.  We always have a good time when we head out to the canyon.  Yesterday was a beautiful day in the canyon and sunrises there are always cool.  These are shots taken from the rim of the canyon early yesterday morning.  A very cool and peaceful way to start the day!








Til Next Time..................




Sunday, March 22, 2015

New Menu Item at McDonald's?


With all the other arguments against McDonald's, you would think someone would have thought this through a little better. I guess this is what happens when you let children do grown up work.  Just sayin'..................

Grimm's Adventure


My little buddy Grimm is recovering nicely from a little "snip snip" trip to the vet earlier this week.  Even though I felt somewhat guilty getting "it" done, having him constantly trying to hump everything in sight was getting to be too much to handle. The vet also says the procedure could possibly help a bit with his allergy issues. I have never heard that one before, but he's the subject matter expert, so I'll have to trust he knows what he's talking about.  Plus we really don't need any "accidents" with the neighborhood dogs if you know what I mean.  Grimm has always liked going to the vet's office.  The people who work there just think he is adorable and when we walked in, he heard the office manager's voice and made a bee line behind the counter.  Yeah, he doesn't mind going there because they treat him like a rock star. I just hope he doesn't hold this one trip against me. LOL   Today, four days after the procedure, he's outside  running around chasing around his stick and sniffing out his kingdom, making sure everything is order after his four day absence.  Yeah, things are getting back to normal.  Soon, he'll be back on the hiking trails and at the dog park winning hearts and minds like never before.  That's my little buddy and I wouldn't have him any other way!


Til next time..............

Thursday, February 12, 2015

While You Weren't Looking (unless you're a Viacom stockholder)


While the world was arguing and debating the merit of Brian Williams six month suspension, without pay, from the NBC Nightly News, Jon Stewart and Comedy Central decided to rattle the cages of television viewers even further with the surprise announcement that Stewart would not be returning to the Daily Show  after the current season.  Since replacing Craig Kilborn in 1999, Stewart is the only host most viewers of the show have ever known. Their shock and dismay comes as no surprise nor should anyone be surprised to learn that stock in Comedy Central's parent company, Viacom, took a hit too on the heels of Stewart's surprise revelation. According to some Wall Street observers, Viacom's shareholders took that massive hit to the tune of somewhere around 350 million dollars.  That's a lot of bank for a newsman, who is not really a newsman.  There's no doubt that's a huge amount for a company to lose on a fake newscast.  While it's true that Stewart is a huge ratings and revenue cash cow for Comedy Central, the network is only a small part of the Viacom stable and this announcement should not have had that kind of impact on the company overall. But it did.  It is also also a huge indicator where the lines between entertainment and journalism are becoming more and more blurred every day. And going in the other direction, much like the lines between journalism and entertainment are becoming more and more blurred as evidenced with the recent Brian Williams scandal. 

Who will they get to replace Jon Stewart?  I'm not sure and I don't think the big cheeses at Viacom  have a clue either.  One thing is for sure though......they had better look and act a lot like Jon Stewart OR Brian Williams and be damn funny too or it might take Viacom  a long time to recover that 350 million in lost stock value!


Til Next Time............



Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Brian Williams: Has The Fat Lady Sung Her Song?

 
Photo Credit: David Shankbone


It's a real shame he felt the need to embellish a story and in turn, damage his career this way. Brian Williams was probably the only reporter/anchor at NBC (on either cable or broadcast) that seemed to even attempt to show any sort of objectivity in his reporting. He didn't always succeed, but more often than not he did. Now we learn this. Disappointed? Yes. Surprised? Not really. I believe there are several factors that led to the scenario where something like this could happen. It's not the first time something like this has happened and I'm sure it won't be the last. But it is the first time someone with the stature of Brian Williams has gotten caught and called out on it. As for this particular situation, NBC thinks a 6 month suspension without pay is appropriate punishment. For Williams, that amounts to a loss of up of $4,000,000 to HIS bottom line. I think Brian Williams done at NBC, at least as far as the Nightly News broadcast goes. NBC typically wins 3 or 4 of the 5 nightly news battles each week on the "broadcast networks." If his "temporary" replacement, Lester Holt, can come in and sustain that or even improve those numbers, the end result is a foregone conclusion. There's no way NBC/Comcast takes a highly visible, much respected, and successful African American out of the anchor chair. It just isn't going to happen. That said, can Williams salvage his career? Maybe. Will he ever anchor a nightly newscast again? Who knows. Time will tell. Maybe Brian Williams can find a spot on MSNBC or at FOX? I certainly hope so, but there's a lot of trust to re-earned and regained before he can do that. Either way, it's a real shame to see an otherwise stellar career take this kind of hit. The fat lady has sung her song for Williams just yet, but at the end of the day and regardless of the how or why, he has no one to blame his current situation on but himself. A cautionary tale indeed.

Til Next Time..................

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

A Three-Peat for Budweiser With This Year's Super Bowl Ad?

If Go Daddy incurred the wrath of consumers with it's doggy tale gone awry in search of a few laughs, the Budweiser just hit a home run with their Super Bowl ad that is the third in a series that revolves around a man, his horse, and a dog.  The first two ads in the trilogy were award winners and this one looks like it could be too.  This morning on the Today Show the ad was unveiled for the first time publicly.  Go Daddy could no doubt take a lesson or two from Budweiser on how to use animals in marketing.  Here's a sneak peak courtesy of the Today Show! Enjoy!

                    
                                                 Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news,



Til Next Time........Cheers!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Crazy Uncle Joe Biden Strikes Again!

Over the past two or three days, a lot has been said about "Deflategate." In case you're not a sports fan, Deflategate is the name given to the controversy surrounding the accusations that the New England Patriots deflated 11 out of the 12 footballs (breaking NFL rules) they were responsible for during Sunday's AFC Championship game between the Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts. The NFL has investigated the incident and found that rules were broken and as the debate rages on, many of the opinions/arguments have been well thought out and well articulated. Then you have our illustrious VP.......Crazy Uncle Joe!


Oh my....After six years of Crazy Uncle Joe in the White House, the VP's spokesperson must a grey old man (or woman) by now.....if they have any hair left at all!

Til Next Time.................