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Covid-19 and How You Know Government Should Be Kept on a VERY Short Leash…

Michigan’s Governor (and a whole slew of other politicians with D’s and R’s after their name) suggested recently that we should replace handshakes with fist and elbow bumps.

Where do those same people suggest you sneeze (or in this case, cough)?

Your elbow.

Just remember, folks, politician is the second oldest profession.  Right after prostitute.  Anyone who puts their faith or hope in politicians will be profoundly disappointed… or happy and profoundly ignorant.

Only Drug Addicts Have a Stigma Equal That of Vegans… And The BBC Entirely Misses the Simple Gist of Why That Is.

An article written for the BBC claims:

People love to moan that vegans are annoying: research has shown that only drug addicts inspire the same degree of loathing. Now psychologists are starting to understand why – and it’s becoming clear that the reasons aren’t entirely rational.

And that’s just the headline! The best part is, and you won’t find this in their article, that loathing is entirely rational, as I’m about to demonstrate.

So why do normal, rational people have a disdain for vegans equal to that of people who cheat, steal, and lie to remain the dregs of society? Well, don’t bother clicking on the link to the BBC article to learn something useful, you won’t. Truthfully, I’m surprised vegans don’t inspire more loathing than addicts and alcoholics do… that would be entirely rational, too.  At least in an addict, being a scourge is a part of a disease…

To understand this, because I happen to be one who holds a special disdain for pretentious vegans whilst not losing my $#!+ about it, I’ll be able to let you in on the secret the BBC wasn’t able to discover.  Now, as a disclaimer, I know there are quite a few upstanding vegans/vegetarians who read my blog regularly – you are not of the pretentious variety and should not take this post to be directed at you – it most certainly is not.  For the aforementioned secret, we need only look at a typical vegan’s actions from the perspective of looking at the actions of a newly recovering addict or alcoholic.

Imagine an addict who found, miraculously, recovery. They found the answer to their unique dilemma and completely changed their ways.  By unique, to use alcoholics as an example, only 10% of the drinking population end up an alcoholic. 90% of drinkers have no problem whatsoever…  They then, in their exuberance, decide to push others to work their recovery program, not just to help other addicts, but normal people as well.  Not to present an environment in which those others can understand what it’s like for we addicts and alcoholics to recover from our addiction(s), but to actually push normal folks to accept and work a recovery program in their lives because the addict/alcoholic thinks it would be good for others to live the way they do because, in the estimation of that addict/alcoholic, normal people just aren’t living up to the addict’s standards – they’re not living right.

Then, and this is the fun part, for those who resisted (as any normal person should), the nutters break into their homes, steal and/or break their stuff, disrupt their family lives and way of life with the hope the normal folk would cave and follow their way of life… This is what vegans do and why normal, polite society has a disdain for them.  As for the normal vegetarians, they get the short end of the stick due to a bit of guilt by association.  The nutter vegans are so loud and horrible, as soon as you hear “I’m a vegetarian”, it triggers instant daymares of the “allow me to tell you why you’re living wrong, you animal murdering bastard” conversation to follow.  We, as they say, simply turn and run for the hills.

That’s the level of pretentiousness exuded by vegans. That’s why vegans are despised. It’s not just that they are just pretentious, obnoxious, hateful people. It’s that they demand others share their idiosyncrasies and wildly misplaced and supercharged guilt. They’re typically ignorant as hell, while maintaining that pretentiousness, and won’t rest until others follow their chosen way of life no matter how wrong it is – and that’s maddening to normal folk who want to have peace and eat their bacon, too.

Take, for instance, a recent example in which two vegans broke into a farm in Italy to “save” some rabbits. They liberated 16 bunnies but failed to understand that those bunnies were mothers. Liberating the mother bunnies caused the death of more than 90 little, innocent, baby bunny rabbits and reports say they killed another five trying to liberate the 16.  Point is, that woman and her team should be charged with breaking and entering, theft, then as a terrorist (same with eco-terrorists).

As for the ignorance, we only need know that vegan diets are typically woefully deficient in many nutrients that cause various illnesses unless synthetic, man-made, hyper-super-duper-processed supplements are taken to maintain some semblance of health.  Here’s a news flash – eating a balanced diet is actually quite simple, until you try to eat vegan.  At that point, you have to micromanage your diet to get the nutrition right.  It’s not supposed to be that way, folks.  Even then, science is beginning to show that people who rely on those supplements are at greater risk of developing certain cancers and illnesses.  Sure, vegans claim to feel healthy for a time, but eventually malnutrition catches up and they run into health problems.  Hair thins over time and starts to fall out, and eventually they become sickly.  Generally speaking, that’s a lack of iron, iodine and Vitamin D, and a few others, dears, and guess where you get iron, iodine and Vitamin D.

The BBC claims loathing vegans isn’t entirely rational? Bullshit. It’s perfectly rational. I’d go as far as logical, and trying to ignore the reasons behind this reasonable loathing, blaming it on something else, only helps to keep the perpetrators ignorant as hell.

If I described you, if you’re a vegan who would break into someone’s home, farm or place of business to stop someone else from eating a healthy diet you happen to disagree with, stop it.  You’re a terrorist and an idiot.  If I didn’t describe you, this wasn’t about you in the first place, and I’m glad you’re a normal functioning part of society along with the vast majority of everyone else.  If you got a chuckle, well, for that I am grateful.  I’ve done my job.

Halftime Show for the Ages… It Was Fun Explaining Why Grown Women Wear What They Do to My Daughters

I want to thank JLo personally, for giving me the opportunity to explain to my teenage daughters why a 50 year-old woman would wear ass-less chaps as a halftime show costume. It was even better explaining the stripper pole. That was a classy touch. Yeah.

Shakira was Shakira and I was awfully grateful for the crotch shots from both, though it was a little uncomfortable seeing that with my daughters in the room. Still, you gotta love the inspiring message that could be gleaned from the performance – two older women performing together, before tens of thousands in the stadium and millions on TV! The message? “Shaking ass sells records, so we shall shake ass.”

Fantastic.

Damage control tonight. Thanks, ladies.

If you want to have a chuckle about the whole kerfuffle, check out this article… it’s a good one.

The Politics of Recovery… And Why I Despise the Use of “Stigma” as a Red Herring in Recovery

Getting rid of the “stigma” in recovery is one of the buzzphrases of the last half-decade in recovery circles.

Even in hardcore drug addiction. We’re talking about people who will steal everything their retired parents have, just so they can stay high. We’re talking about drunks who are so self-absorbed, they plan time with the kids around watering holes so they can get a little loaded up while they’re driving the kids around. Personally, while there may have been a good kid buried way down deep inside, I was a complete and entire loser until I started fixing who I was by beginning a program of recovery. I didn’t care who I used up when I was drinking, as long as I could keep the game going one more day.

My problem with the way “stigma” is it is treated as what others are doing to the addict, somehow society is casting this so-called stigma on the addicted community. The addicted are being portrayed as victims when its the addict that victimizes everyone they come into contact with to stay high. Where this becomes a problem is when we take to finally stop digging our own grave and attempt recovery.

Everyone with a pony in the recovery show should know that in order for recovery to work, no matter which form of recovery one chooses to follow, the focus has to be, and forever remain, on self. It has to be this way because the rest of the world won’t quit drinking and doing drugs just because we do. The second recovery ceases being about self and begins being about what others do, we trudge the path to relapse.

I can only focus on myself in my recovery; it’s not how the world treats me, but how I view how the world treats me that matters. My reaction to how the world treats me is the only thing I can control. And this is exactly why “society’s stigma” against the addicts has no bearing on me personally.

  1. It is absolutely none of my business what anyone else thinks of me.
  2. It is entirely my business what I think of me.
  3. If what I think of me is bad, then I best get to work on changing how I’m living so I can flip that “bad” to “good”.

Trying to change everyone in “society”, especially trying to convince society that we’re victims after we victimize “society” with our behavior, is like trying to stop a freight train with a squirt gun. Conversely, understanding what we think society thinks of us might be useless and concentrating on our own recovery takes a decision and a little bit of practice.

The choice is yours, Don Quixote.

Oh, and one last thing about that squirt gun vs. the freight train – that’s exactly why people take on “society’s stigma” as having anything to do with one’s recovery in the first place. It’s ego-driven drivel. It’s only so they can, at some point in the future, say they were on the bandwagon that changed how society looks at addicts. They were on the cutting edge of societal evolution, after all!

That and a Buck will get you a cup of coffee.

At a 7-11.

Vegans Over the Edge… Yet Again: Class Action Lawsuit Against Burger King for Using Same Grill as Normal Burgers. Paging Captain Obvious, Please Call the Office

Trigger (heh) warning:  This post will be somewhat of a hit piece on a specific, small, yet exceedingly loud portion of the vegan/vegetarian population.  Not quite what would come out of the New York Times if it pertained to President Trump, because at least this will be truthful, but I’m going to be pretty blunt, as my disclaimer to the left explains.  I’m not, in any way, shape, form, or manner, trying to say all vegans and/or vegetarians are bad, mean-spirited, ignoramuses… just that a very specific cult of that small group is.  You have been trigger (heh) warned.

My wife has a vegetarian friend who once complained that my grill had meat cooked on it at one time, so she’d prefer it if I didn’t grill her veggie burger on that same grill…  I did figure a way around that for her, though.  I steam cleaned that side of the grill to her liking, applied some oil to keep her burger from sticking, and grilled her veggie burger.  I did this because I love my wife, and her friend is pretty cool about the whole thing, anyway.  Now, if she were like some people…

When Burger King came out with their Impossible Whopper, however, I had a feeling a complaint wasn’t too far off because there’s no way Burger King was going to appease the vegan nutter base.  What’s it been?  Three months and some change.  One way or another, someone was going to go all apoplectic.  I should have published something to show what a genius I am… and what a loser the vegan who would eventually sue Burger King is:

The lawsuit alleges that if he had known the burger would be cooked in such a manner, he would have not purchased it.
The Burger King that Williams visited did not have signage at the drive-thru indicating that the plant-based burger would be cooked on the same grill as meat, the suit says.

Paging Captain Obvious, please call the office.

What did this knucklehead think, Burger King would install another grill to grill their Impossible Whopper?  The guy, if he thought that, is impossibly stupid.  He obviously has never looked beyond the cash counter to see how little room there is in the back of a Burger King – there’s certainly no room for another broiler!

Where this, and so many sordid stories like it, runs afoul of decency is when nutters try to impose their idiosyncrasies on the rest of civilization.  It’s not Burger King’s job to anticipate and prepare for every nut who walks into a Burger King.  If Phillip Williams has a problem with his veggie burger being cooked on the same grill as a normal burger, perhaps he should be wearing signage stating that his beliefs run counter to popular norms and he prefers his burgers to be prepared a special way… this way the employees can simply nuke his Impossible Whopper (I’d bet that’s BK’s “non-broiler method of preparation”) and be done with it:

“For guests looking for a meat-free option, a non-broiler method of preparation is available upon request,” the site notes.

This can be put in simple terms, folks; if you require your food to be prepared in a special way, not in the norm, and obviously Phillip Williams knows he does, then it’s his responsibility to make sure his needs are met, not someone else’s.

Better, in a sane world the court would make the complainant prove his/her/their Impossible Whopper actually did get beef on it from being cooked on the same grill.  What most people don’t know about Burger King broilers (that I happen to), is that the grill is a based on a conveyor belt system, about 2-1/2 feet wide by, maybe five feet long (if memory serves), so the grill actually goes through the fire a second time which gives any meat that might be stuck to the links time to cook off.  Thinking back on teenage days at BK, more than three decades ago, I can’t remember ever seeing any buildup on the conveyor, certainly not like one would see on their home grill, and certainly not in amounts that would lead to meat clinging to the conveyor so it could then be transferred to someone’s Impossible Whopper – the claim this could happen seems shady to me.

Anyway, insufferable people are insufferable.  Paging Captain Obvious.  Again.

Michigan Cycling Law and Passing Slower Traffic; Why Did the Facebook Crowd have a Meltdown Over This Photo?

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I took the photo above on DALMAC and sent it in to the staffers to enter a photo contest.  Apparently, whether the TCBA posted it, or one of my friends, on Facebook, social media had a huge meltdown over this photo. Folks, motherf***ers were pissed.  At issue was the fact that we crossed a yellow line to pass a miniature horse and buggy being driven by a young boy.  First, before we get into this, we need context to keep the idiocy at a minimum; we were roughly double the speed of the little guy and his horse.  I’d guess they were about 10-mph and we were around 20, probably a little higher.  Our average pace for the day was 19.48-mph, so common sense would dictate between 22 & 24 (we do, for the most part, stop at stop signs and always at traffic lights, so we have to ride a little faster for the average).

Now, I’m second bike behind my buddy, Mike in this photo. I started calling out to move wide, early and that’s exactly what we did to pass.

If you don’t know anything about cycling, passing horses and buggies, and traffic, and you’re ignorant of Michigan law, well, I imagine you could get your dander up over that photo, but another’s ignorance isn’t enough to get my undies in a bunch, either.

So, here are the things people miss in their ignorance, intolerance and desire to jump on someone else out for a leisurely stroll:

  • It’s hard to see from the photo, because I was holding the camera down pretty low, and I was angling it down as well, to get the shot right, whilst riding in a pace line at  better than 20-mph (everyone within earshot knew I was taking the photos), but adjusting the height a little bit, to eye level, we can see all the way down the road beyond the stop sign. We knew we had the room to pass and gave the horse and buggy a little more than three feet, because that’s what decent people do.
  • We had complete situational awareness when we passed the kid riding in the horse and buggy. Complete.
  • It’s a kid driving that buggy…
  • Anyone who knows anything about horses, when they get spooked, they freight train. We weren’t about to spook that horse and have him go all mental on a kid, so we started talking so the horse (and the kid) could hear us coming, then we passed wide, where and when it was safe to do so, and in a manner that we hoped wouldn’t spook them.
  • This is a photo taken just a few seconds earlier when we were in the process of moving over – you can see the lead cyclist on the right motioning to get over (or, if you didn’t know, that’s the end of the motion to move over, an obstacle is ahead):

As we are a vehicle on the road, subject to the same laws (as the angry mob likes to say), we assumed a little bit of the new Michigan bicycle passing law ourselves:

 (3) Notwithstanding section 640, if it is safe to do so, the driver of a vehicle overtaking a bicycle proceeding in the same direction may overtake and pass the bicycle in a no-passing zone.

We, as cyclists and motorists, are accutely aware of what three feet actually is.  In the first photo, I’d call that four or five feet, but again, we didn’t want to spook the kid or the horse.  So, in other words, we followed existing law and did what was intelligent.  We overtook a horse and buggy, on a bicycle travelling roughly double the speed, where it was clearly safe to do so, in a no-passing zone.  We used the existing law on the books as it was written, passed, and intended.

It’ll never be good enough, as cyclists go…

Just yesterday, our small, four-person group was yelled at by a motorist because we didn’t stop at a stop sign and put a foot down… 40 feet before we even got to the intersection.  We hadn’t even made it to the intersection!  First, we are not on motorcycles.  We have the ability to stop without putting a foot down.  Let’s take that argument at face value, though.  You think motorists are mad at cyclists now, let’s follow the put your foot down notion to conclusion.  Rather than take 20 cyclists 20 seconds to clear an intersection, let’s go two at a time, foot down, then go, foot down, then go… those same twenty cyclists would take a minute and a half to clear an intersection.  You think motorists are irate now, good grief.  Better, let’s follow knucklehead’s suggestion and stop, foot down, 40′ from an intersection, and hop our bikes up to the stop sign.  20 cyclists, we’d clear an intersection in two minutes.  You can’t even quantify the squitters that would cause.

Where the rubber meets the road, as they say.

It doesn’t matter why the angst, it’s directed at the wrong people.  Cyclists would rather be on a paved shoulder almost as much as motorists want them on a shoulder.  I’d be willing to bet you wide shoulders would approach 90% voter approval, so why doesn’t every road built in the State of Michigan have a wide shoulder on either side of the road that we would gladly use to avoid angry nincompoops?

Ask your politician.  And therein lies the rub.  One thing is for sure, I’m not going to quit using the roads till they put shoulders in we can ride on, no matter how angry someone ignorantly is that I’m legally there.

Just remember, if it’s a “speed” thing, you’ll have to ban mail vans and farm equipment from the roads as well.  My friends and I pass them on a regular basis.  We passed a mail truck just Saturday morning.  The driver never came close to catching us… and we take up less space on the road.

Just another day in my semi-perfect life…

I leave work a little after 3 pm and it’s a two-hour commute home from my current job. This is not a complaint, I’m on what is probably the best job I’ve ever had the pleasure of building – I’m in the middle of my most enjoyable work experience in my career, and that’s no exaggeration.  The job is seriously getting in the way of my cycling habit, though.  It’s not rare for me to rather the trainer than riding outside, simply because the set-up is quicker.

I pulled into the driveway at 4:55 last evening, got the bike ready, and rolled it out the door just before 5:30.  My normal weekday riding bud, Chuck, has been inundated with work lately so he couldn’t make it – I had to roll solo.  There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, but it was just barely out of the 30’s (5 C)… and the north wind was cold… and I was headed directly into it.  One north, then a break for two heading west, followed by another north and one west and another north, by the time I hit my first tailwind, I was good and ready.  I was a little chilly and had thought about turning the train around more than once – too much work related noise distracting the melon committee – until I hit that tailwind.  All of a sudden everything cleared out and was okay as I was cruised along at 20+ (32-36 km/h).  I’d opted for the Venge because it was perfectly sunny out and I marveled at how perfectly quiet and responsive the bike is.  It’s truly a wonder of engineering, that bike.

As I hit a little decline with the tailwind I pressed on the pedals a little harder and the bike responded.  24, 25, 26-mph… then a sharp left and I was back on the gas.  I passed a few people standing on the side of the road at 23, not even the whirring of the chain.  Just a whoosh as I went by.

A mile north, in through a subdivision, then out onto the main road and a bike lane.  On the way down a small hill a girl leaned out the window of an older maroon Pontiac Grand Prix and catcalled me.  I think, considering today’s politics, I should have been offended but I’m old enough to still think of that as a compliment.  A couple of more miles east and it was pay-off time for the ride.  The home stretch with a tailwind for three of four miles.

Heading up a shallow incline with the wind at my back I didn’t bother pushing the pace.  Monday is always a fun day in preparation for Tuesday’s hammer.  I just let the wind do its thing and push me home.  I rolled into the driveway just under 58 minutes for the 17-1/2 mile route.  A little faster than I should have wanted but I was just happy to have gotten out, and stuck with it until the ride got fun.  By 6:40 I was showered.  I’d eaten by 7:00 and I was out like a light before 8 pm.  The sun had just gone down as I drifted off.

What a life.  It’s as good as it gets.