Archive for April, 2008

Remembering My Grandma Sylvia

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

My Grandma Sylvia passed away 3 weeks short of her 100th birthday. She died the night of April 28th, and my last conversation with her was earlier that morning. I was visiting her, and when I kissed her on the cheek and told her I loved her, she replied that she loved me as well. I then went to work on Wall Street, flew to Los Angeles, and got the news when my plane landed the night before last.

As awful as the last 24 hours have been, I would like to take today and share some of my memories of her. She was an impressive woman on every level. Below are some of my interactions with her. All of these exchanges took place when she was in her 90s.

I pointed out that there was an NBA basketball player that was nicknamed “Grandma-ma,” and that this player wore the booties, the bonnet, and the rest of the grandma outfit. My grandmother floored me by saying, “Yeah. Larry Johnson. The Knicks aren’t doing so well.” I have no idea when she followed basketball.

When I told her I was going out on a date, she told me to make sure to protect myself. I told her I had a warm winter jacket. She replied, “That isn’t what I meant young man, and you know it.”

She was married for 67 years, and had 2 children, 5 grandchildren, and 6 great grandchildren.

She told me the other day that it sometimes took her 30 minutes to get from her chair to the bathroom and then back into bed. I told her that It took me longer, especially on weekend mornings. She laughed. She said, “Well you are an old man. You are not as young as you used to be.”

When she went to visit my grandfather in the nursing home, there was ice on the ground.  The accessoride was late, so she decided to walk it. When the light started blinking, she said, “Let’s go.”  When I pointed out that the light was blinking, she replied, “There are no cops. Let’s go.”  She then said, “Hold on to my arm. There is ice and snow on the ground and I don’t want you tripping and falling and hurting yourself.”

She was fiercely independent until age 94.  She even cooked for me.  She gave me grapefruit, knowing I would make that squinty grapefruit face. She would even insist on giving me green beans, even though I hated green vegetables. She would give me less and less of them every year, in the hopes I could handle smaller doses. The last year she cooked for me she gave me four green beans. I ate two of them, and said, “Grandma, I can’t do it. I don’t like them and I don’t want to eat them.” She relented, and thought I did not notice when she doubled my grapefruit intake. At least on the cereal front she allowed me to have Lucky Charms. Yet despite that privilege, I had to finish all the milk, in addition to the orange juice, and of course, that wretched grapefruit.

Pure dumb luck allowed her to live another 6 years.

On one visit in 2002, shortly after my grandfather died, I was sleeping in the guest bedroom. There was no phone in the room, so I would have to get up and go to my grandfather’s study just to answer the phone. When the phone rang and rang one morning, it was 10:30am. I stayed in bed, figuring my grandmother would answer it. At 11:15am, it started ringing again. When I got up to answer it, I saw papers strewn on the floor. Something was not right. She was on the floor having a seizure.

I calmly called 911 while thinking two things, which I later shared with my grandmother. My first thought was “not like this.” A woman who had been independent her whole life did not deserve this type of ending.

My second and more selfish thoughts was “not on my watch.” The last thing I needed was for the family to find out that she had died when I visited.

Thankfully the paramedics were fabulous, and saved her life. My grandmother thanked me for saving her life by giving me $1000. I thanked her and told her that with her money, I now had $800 in the bank.

Although she had more seizures over the years, they were not as serious as this one. Her levels would be off, and they would be readjusted. In the past year she had a new medicine, and it was working well. She walked with a walker, not needing a wheelchair. She had a live in aid who took care of her.

When I had a subsequent visit, she had a fall, and had to be taken to the hospital. Despite her occasional falls, she was lucky enough never to fracture anything.

Yet I had to deal with the teasing from my cousins, who decided I was a jinx.

So on more than one occasion, including a few days ago, I laid down the law with my grandma.

“Grandma, you have to be healthy when I visit. If anything happens to you when I am here, the entire family will think I did it. Then Angela Lansbury of Murder She Wrote or Matlock will show up and I will be arrested and taken away in handcuffs. I don’t need this.”

She laughed hysterically.

When I told her this weekend that I enjoyed spending time with “my best gal,” she asked “I’m your best gal?” When I replied that of course she was, she replied, “for now.”

On Sunday night we were watching “Deal or no deal.” My grandmother wanted to make deals, and my answer to everything was “No deal!” It did not matter what the situation was. She remarked, “You just don’t deal with anybody.” When a pizza commercial came on for four dollars a pizza pie, my grandmother remarked that at least that was a good deal. I again told her, “no deals for anybody about anything. We are not making any deals tonight.” She laughed, and when the 1-800 Flowers commercial came on, I told her that I did not care how pretty the flowers were, the answer was still “no deal.” She said I was too tough on people.

One memory of her was when she received an invitation to be the guest at a rubber chicken dinner in her honor. In real life, she did a lot of work with various organizations, but told me she was not going to the ceremony. She dryly said, “I don’t need an award to know I am old. My age tells me that, and so does my body.”

Although they had snacks in thew living room, my grandfather was not supposed to eat them. I would distract her, and he would eat them.

On the Sabbath, my grandfather would want to watch the Mets game, which was in direct contradiction to being an Orthodox Rabbi. My job was to be the heretic grandson, trip over the table, and have my nose turn on the tv. This was difficult given that it was a knob.

Nevertheless, she would come in, and I would say, “I forgot.” She would say, “Eric, you know better.” The truth is, she knew better. We thought we had fooled her all those years. She was not happy about my chicanery, but she knew I loved my grandfather. Besides, I pointed out to her that my grandfather had suffered enough. No, not because he was Jewish. He was a Mets fan. She did not accept that as a valid answer, even after we tried to show her their horrible record.

Yet the one incident that will end up in my hall of fame of situations was when I tried to sneak in well past curfew. Yes, I was an adult, but her home meant her rules, and nice boys did not stay out all hours of the night. It was a few years ago, and I was returning from what I will only describe as a social function. I did not arrive home until several minutes after 4am.

I quietly entered her apartment, but unfortunately she had one part of her hardwood floor that always made a loud creak. As soon as I stepped on it, her perfect hearing caused her to stir. It was a race against the clock. As she walked with her walker, I quickly dove for her couch, got under the covers, and pretended to be asleep. When I saw her, I stretched, as if she had woken me up.

“There you are, sleeping like a little angel.” I smiled.

Then she took a cane (She never used one, it probably belonged to my late grandfather, although I do not recall his use of it.) that was attached to her walker, and used it to pull down the covers to reveal a fully dressed young man.

The 10 minute lecture I received was less mortifying than having to hear from my cousins how I stayed out all night like the deviant I was.

My grandma took notes of everything. She claims this was because her memory was failing. I suspect it was because she had ties to J. Edgar Hoover, although she most likely destroyed that evidence.

When she fell ill a few months later, I checked her notebook for phone numbers. I inadvertently opened up the page to my previous  visit where the last entry said, “Eric, 4:20am.”

When she got better, I brought that up with her. I explained to her that her entry was wrong, and that I got home at 4:10am, not 4:20am. She would not budge.

“The fact that I had to scold you for 10 minutes is because you stayed out so late. The 10 minutes counts. I am not changing the entry.” When my cousins mention 4:20am, I instantly protest by saying, “it was 4:10am!”

She was a funny, bright woman, and I am still in shock over her death. Yes she was old, but it still stings.

I had grandparents until age 36, which is 36 years more than many.

Besides, she is with my grandfather now in heaven.

They took a brief break from each other, but after 67 years, they were bound to continue together.

I just hope that when she sits at the head table with God and my grandfather, that she does not force them to eat green beans. I suspect at the very least, on days when it rains, it is either because the grapefruit they are being forced to eat is squirting down upon us, or because the tears of wincing after eating it is dropping to the ground.

I miss you grandma. May God bless you.

eric

Goodbye Grandma Sylvia, I love you a lot

Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

On Monday, April 28th, 2008, I kissed my grandmother good morning. I told her I loved her and she told me she loved me back. The previous night we watched television from 7:30pm to midnight.

I told her I was going to Wall Street to work, and that  when I got back to Los Angeles, it would be 4am her time, and that I would call her the next day.  We exchanged several “I love yous.”

I left work at 6pm, got on my flight at 9:30pm, and landed in Los Angeles at 1:30am. I checked my email from my phone, and found out that while I was in the air, my Grandma Sylvia passed away in her chair. She went very peacably.

This happened without warning. On May 17th, she would have been 100, and she was excited about it.

She was 99 and 11/12,  and  when I left that morning she was fine.

I am sick to my gut right now, but at least I know that my last conversation with her was me repeatedly telling her I loved her, and her saying the same.

eric

Barack Obama, Meet Chris Wallace

Monday, April 28th, 2008

Barack Obama seems to be very difficult to dislike. Instead of treating Fox News like enemy combatants, he decided to go on and give a lengthy interview with Chris Wallace.

Yes, this is the same Chris Wallace that turned Bill Clinton into a finger waving crybaby.

While I have consistently stated that I am voting for John McCain, I have tried to cover debates and appearance as a dispassionate observer. Barack Obama has had some terrible performances as of late, with his worst being in the Pennsylvania debate. It is with this detached focus that I evaluate his performance being interviewed by Chris Wallace.

Obama simply shined. Thre is no way around it. As bad as he has been lately, he was that good in this interview.

He probably enraged a few on the left by stating that he would vote to confirm General Petraeus as the head of Central Command (Centcom). When asked pointed questions about how his relationship with Petraeus worked, he gave what I found to be clear and intelligent answers.

If General Petraeus questioned his strategy, he would absolutely listen to him and consider his feedback. However, he is not wrong to say that the President must make the final call, since it is the President who’s job is on the line with the voters. While I do not agree with Obama’s stance on the Iraq War, he came across as very humble, which would make sense for a man who criticizes President Bush for (in Obama’s eyes) promising to be humble and then not being so.

This is in stark contrast to the Hillary Clinton crowd that spoke of “General Betray Us.”

Obama also made a very bold statement regarding race in the election that everyody should hear.

“If I lose the geenral election, it will not be because of race. It will be because I did not communicte my message effectively enough to the voters. It will not be because of my race.”

He also stated that Americans are better than that, and this is a subject of much debate.

There is a raging argument going on that suggests that many Americans lie to pollsters when they say they would vote for a black man, but recoil when they are in the voting booth.

This closet racism may exist, but it is among demcrats. It is absolutely a leftist problem, because it is the left that pits people against each other.

Al Gore introduced the world to Willie Horton in 1988 against Michael Dukakis, yet Lee Atwater and President George Herbert Walker Bush get the blame for what one liberal introduced against a fellow liberal.

This feeds into the nonsense that “republicans will play the race card, so we had better do it first to toughen up our own candidate.”

This argument is nonsense because republcians are scared to death of the race issue. A republican who breathes incorrectly can be called a racist. Leftists can yell racist comments and nobody cares. Bill and Hillary Clinton played the race card in South Carolina, using the republican defense as justification.

Barack Obama has seen through this. He admitted that John McCain is not a racist. Therefore, any liberal group that tries this tactic will lose, because their own candidate has disavowed this.

On this issue, Obama’s respect shines through.

If Obama finally wins the nomination, and after Hillary Clinton is dragged from the stage kicking and screaming, a campaign about actual issues can take place.

Barack Obama and John McCain are both good, decent men who have very different ideas.

Obama is wrong on Iraq. He is wrong on trade. He is wrong on taxes, especially the capital gains tax and the Bush tax cuts. His position on Israel is hopelessly naive and misguided.

Many will disagree with me on these issues, but at least these are legitimate issues to begin with.

Many who claim that an Obama loss would be due to racism are playing the race card themselves. After all, ask a black or white liberal if Judge Clarence Thomas or GOPAC Chairman Michael Steele are black, and the contorted answers about being “authentically black” are brought up.

For the Milli Vanillionth time (they were black, but whatever their race, their music bothered me), race is about one and only one criteria. It is an issue of pigmentation. That is determined by melanin content. Being black is not an attitude, a state of mind, or a feeling. Claiming Bill Clinton was black because he was basically brought up in a trailer trash home is an insult to many upwardly mobile blacks that do not like to be portrayed as wife beaters and alcoholics.

Bill Clinton was not a child of blackness. He was a child of poverty, or at least a lower socioeconomic strata. There is no shame in being poor, but it is nothing to brag about either.

Barack Obama has been forced to downplay his wealth, because that might make him less authentic.

Barack Obama is an American success story that should not be President for policy reasons alone.

When a liberal tries to portray republicans as racists for having the nerve to support war hero Hohn McCain when America is at war, and we agree with his prescriptions, ask them how they feel about Clarence Thomas. Explain to them that disliking him is automatically racism. When they claim it is merely his views they find offensive, ask them why wanting to cut capital gains tax cuts and continue the War in Iraq until the job is done are racist positions. Then watch them babble.

Barack Obama was very impressive on Chris Wallace last night, and as we all know, Wallace is tough. Rather than cry about being asked tough questions, as many Daily Kossacks continue to do, tough questions should be encouraged. After all, Chris Wallace is not Al Queda. He is just a reporter doing his job, and one of the few who does it responsibly. As many different phrases of the same question goes, how can one stand up to world leaders when they cannot face a reporter?

Bill Kristol correctly pointed out that many of Obama’s answers lacked substance. Even if that was true, the fact that I did not notice that during the interview only goes to show how effective he was. To go back and watch it again, and judge the performance in a harsher light, would be unfair.

The answer is not to vote against Obama solely on his race. That is racism. However, voting for him because of his race is also racism, and the guilty white liberals supporting him might want to think about that before throwing racial stones.

Republicans have no reason to play the race card, and John McCain is too good a man to do it. We are right on the issues, and should win that way. I would only hope that Barack Obama lives up to his promise to want to heal America. If he loses the general election, the best way to do this is to promise to support John McCain on issues of agreement, go against him on areas of disagreement, but be respectful of the office he holds.

After all, anybody can be magnanimous when they win. I am giving my word of honor that if Barack Obama wins, I will support him on the occasions I agree with him. I supported Bill Clinton on welfare reform and NAFTA.

If Obama can be as gracious and eloquent in defeat as he was during the Chris Wallace interview, then he will have lifted up the discourse in America.

I know John McCain will do what is right win or lose. If Barack Obama does as well, America will be better off for it.

This is why I want Obama to defeat Hillary. The 2008 Presidential race will be tough, sincere, and won by a likable person, democrat or republican.

The well has been poisoned, but it is not too late to chlorinate the toxic political environment.

Mr. Obama will be formidable. After all, he does not seem to be afraid of Chris Wallace, nor does he blame him afterwards for daring to ask tough questions.

Mr. Obama was well prepared. Mr. McCain will be as well.

eric

NFL 2008 Draft Recap

Sunday, April 27th, 2008

For the sake of ethics, in case some of you would prefer to stop reading my column within the first couple lines as you usually do, let me make one thing crystal clear. This 2008 NFL Draft Recap will not be a review of all 32 teams and picks. That is what espn.com, nfl.com, and other such websites are for. This is a recap of my draft experience from a fan’s perspective.

As an NFL junkie, I have been to one Super Bowl (the most recent one in Phoenix, a thriller for the ages), the Hall of Fame Game in Canton Ohio, and the Pro Bowl in Hawaii in 2006 and 2007 (had to skip this one since the Super Bowl was expensive). I went to the NFL Draft in 2006. While I had a fabulous time, I really do not know anything about college football. The NFL is my passion. I read the USA Today Draft reports and try to learn. The only reason I went back in 2007 was because the Oakland Raiders had the top pick. I went again this year because the Raiders had the # 4 pick.

So why would a guy who does not know college football go to the Draft? Because there are plenty of NFL stars there, and I like meeting them. Plus, many of them autograph my football.

As crazy as this sounds, I root for the players that autograph stuff to have good careers. Some players choose to be nice about it, others forget that we fans are what pay their salaries.

Jim Cramer of “Mad Money” was there, and he graciously signed my football. What was funny was that he was sitting in the front row, and was asked to give up his seat so that the VIPs could sit down. Perhaps he got an even better seat, but it looked like he was simply asked to get up. I told him that I liked his prior show with Larry Kudlow, although in all honesty that was because of Kudlow. However, I was sincere when I told him I enjoyed his appearances on Celebrity Apprentice.

Various analysts from ESPN and the NFL Network were also happy to oblige regarding autographs. Gil Brandt, John Clayton, Mike Mayock, and Mike Tirico were friendly, as was former Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski and former 49ers guard Randy Cross, both current analysts.

Current announcer and former Lions and 49ers coach Steve Mariucci was nice as well. I told him that after one game, I developed a high respect for him as a person. The Lions trailed the Vikings 28-21, when they scored a touchdown with seconds left. Then the long snapper misfired and the extra point never got kicked, as the Lions lost 28-27. Many coaches would have reamed a guy for blowing a game like that, but Mariucci was consoling the guy on the sideline, and he went to bat for him afterwards. I let Coach Mariucci know I found that classy, and he thanked me for my comments.

Jimmy Giles is working with the Buccaneers, and we both found it amusing that the Bcs drafted a guy named Dexter Jackson. In the Superbowl where the Bucs throttled the Raiders after the 2002 season, te MVP of the game was Dexter Jackson. So now they have another one. I told Mr. Giles that the Raiders could use some help on the offensive line, but he laughed and said he was done.

Legendary Raider Willie Brown autographed my ball. He was nice, and was surprised when I told him that I had met him previously, and felt that I owed him an apology. When he asked why, I told him that I met him in a club in Hawaii after the Pro Bowl, and asked him to autograph my ball while he was relaxing in the club. I let him know that I learned from that experience, and that it is one thing to ask for autographs at the Draft, but not when a guy is trying to relax during his private time. He was appreciative, and let me know that he hoped others would understand that as well.

Usually the only time to try and get autographs with announcers is when they take bathroom breaks. However, given that they go hours without breaks, I ask them if they will autograph my ball on the way back from their break, so it is less disruptive. Former 49 quarterback Steve Young and uber-announcer Chris Berman took their break simultaneously. They both promised to come back, and they did, but given how many people want autographs, it was not possible to get them both. The guy next to me went for Steve Young, which is fine because the one guy I really feel sheepish around is Chris Berman.

I have met Berman a few times, and had my picture taken with him at the Pro Bowl when he liked my sign paying homage to NFL Primetime. This time I just told him something heartfelt. I stated to him that in the days after 9/11, his showing of the Giants-Chiefs highlights were very meaningful and important to me. He seemed extremel grateful, and asked me what my name was. I told him, and again thanked him for those highlights during a low moment in history.

One man who is very genuine is NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. He autographed my ball last year, and was very good with the fans. Unlike his predecessor Paul Tagliabue, who moved quickly, Mr. Goodell, only starting his second year on the job, interacts very well with the fans. I told him last year that I love football, and was concerned the game was being tarnished by bad off field behavior. I told him I was glad he was cracking down, no matter how big the star. He said that he loves the game as well, which is why he is doing so. This year he autographed my ball again, and I told him that I admired the fact that a year earlier he spent 10 minutes with a fan in a wheelchair. I told him it was very classy, especially since the cameras were off. He told me that he much prefers it when the cameras are off. He is simply a nice guy, and a fabulous leader of the sport as well.

As for the new players, most of them are ordered not to give autographs. The worry is people will sell the autographs, which ruins it for true fans like me.

This year almost all of the top players wanted to sign stuff, and their handlers refused to allow it. Many of the players defied their handlers quickly when they were not looking, which meant only a couple people got autographs. One player deliberately signed stuff for the fans of the team that drafted him, openly ignoring the handlers.

Every year there is one or two star players that sign everything. Last year it was running back Adrian Peterson of the Minnesota Vikings. His relatives made it clear that he was a nice boy, and that people were to let them know if he did not sign stuff. He signed everything in sight, and seemed happy to do it.

This year, Vernon Gholston of the New York Jets, the 6th pick, signed a ton of stuff. His father was with him, and made sure he did. I thanked his father, and told him that he was a true gentleman.

Two people that do not autograph stuff are Deion Sanders and Marshall Faulk. Faulk has walked by me several times, and deliberately looks the other way. He does this with all the fans. Thankfully most of the players do not fall in this category.

As for the fans, most of the peoplein the crowd were fans of the Jets and Giants. The Patriots and Cowboys were booed the loudest, and even the 1-15 Dolphins were booed. One fan had a sign that read “The Jets Draft Blunders End Today.” The word “blunders” was in bold.

I could have sworn the Lions fans were yelling “Liar Felon,” but they were actually yelling “Fire Millen,” a reference to beleagured team President Matt Millen.

The Raiders had so many needs to fill, and running back was not one of them. Yet Al Davis loves flashy picks. He went with running back Darren McFadden. I met McFadden’s cousin, and even she could not get him to autograph someething although it was clear he wanted to do it. She gave me her contact information, and said she will try and let me know the details about minicamp. I wanted the Raiders to draft Chris Long, because is father Howie Long is a Raider legend. I would have been happy had we traded down fr additional picks as well, since Oakland has no second or third round picks. In all fairness, giving up the second round pick for Falcons cornerback Deangelo Hall is an excellent move. As for McFadden, this was clearly a case of taking a potential superstar over a need pick, which is fine. Between him and Jamarcus Russell, the building blocks are there.

Another Raider I met was Jerry Davis, the brother of the owner of the Raiders, Al Davis. Al Davis does not go to the draft for health reasons. He uses a walker to get around. Jerry Davis told me that he (Jerry) does not sign stuff because he never played for the team, so he thinks it’s a waste. However, when I told him I was a Jewish guy from Brooklyn and a member of the Raider Nation, he asked for my business card. He told me to write my home address on the card so that he could have his brother send me something. I am not holding out much hope on that one, especially since he is probably beyond busy. I did tell him that Al Davis is one of my heroes, and that I wished good health for him.

The second day of the NFL Draft is Sunday, but I have never attended the second day, and have no reason to this year. After the first round, I get bored. Besides, all the autographs are done, and my ball is full.

It was an enjoyable experience, and the 2008 season starts Thursday, September 4th, with the Oakland Raiders hosting the Denver Broncos on Monday Night Football on September 8th.

I am so ready for some football.

eric

NFL Draft 2008

Saturday, April 26th, 2008

Before getting to the best that life as we know it has to offer, here are some critical events I learned about while watching the news last night.

In ice cream news, one ice cream man has been driving his truck for 60 years, and has never hit or injured a child. Another female ice cream woman is his daughter, and she is continuing the family legacy. She also bring presents for the local children on Christmas.

The Suny Purchase Panthers defeated the St. Josephs Bears 18-3 in college baseball.

Poetry in the Park this week will feature Walt Whitman poems.

Bette Midler helped locals plant trees for Arbor Day. The Blue Man Group showed up, which reminded me that mixing blue with green brings turquoise.

It is expected to be 62 degrees with some showers in Bedford Stuyvesant, known as Bed Sty Do Or Die. The low is expected to be 53 degrees. Whether or not these April showers will bring May flowers remains to be seen until next week.

Port workers in Red Hook reached an agreement with the Port Authority.

President Bush has authorized a 6 month tariff on socks from Honduras. I now know one product Honduras exports.

Yes folks, the Tygrrrr Express is getting his news this weekend from News 12 Brooklyn. I love my grandmother dearly, but I wish she had invested 20 years ago in cable. Her home actually is more modern than a decade ago. She replaced the rotary phones with touchtone, easing the burden on my dialing finger. She now has a remote control, removing her as the only woman I knew with a television that still had knobs. She does not have Fox News, or even CNN, but I am glad she is around. Due to time constraints, I will not do a recap of the most recent episode of “Deal Or No Deal” today.

I am also jealous that she can wake up from a sound sleep in a recliner chair, make her way to the bathroom, use the bathroom, wash her hands, and make it into bed, in less time than it takes me on some weekend mornings. It is also humbling to know that I can watch her carefully and warn her not to bump into anything, yet I cannot remind myself to do the same thing. I worry she will be careful when I am not in the apartment, but she worries about me leaving the safe apartment into the dangerous world of Manhattan.

Grandma is guarding the home front today as I prepare to go into battle. Yes, the 2008 NFL Draft is upon us, and I am attending for the third straight year. I had planned to only go once, but last year the Raiders had the top pick, and this year they pick fourth. Plus, I plan to get plenty of autographs for my football that I bought at the most recent Superbowl in Phoenix.

The Miami Dolphins picked offensive tackle Jake Long with the first pick, and he is now under contract. Therefore, the St. Louis Rams are now on the clock, followed by the Atlanta Falcons and the Oakland Raiders.

I will not be live blogging the event because I have an anti-cursing policy on my blog, and I turn into a salty mouthed individual when I do not like the decisions made on draft day. I hope the cameras bleep me out in case my attempt at self censorship fails as expected.

I will not be analyzing every pick from top to bottom. Mel Kiper, Chris Berman, and friends will have two days to do that better than I possibly could. My plan is to cover things from the fan’s point of view. I will try and cover how they react to the picks, and how the various people involved with the draft conduct themselves.

Life is meant to be lived, and whatever is going on in the real world will have to wait until this weekend is over. I usually only go to the first day of the draft. After the first few picks, I am focused on other aspects of the draft, given my lack of knowledge about college football.

By the time the draft starts, I will have hopefully memorized my USA Today draft preparer.

Now if only the Oakland Raiders, for the first time since 2002, would spend as much time preparing their NFL season as I do mine.

The opening kickoff is about 4 1/2 months away.

Are you ready for the NFL Draft!!!!!!!!!

Let’s get it on!!!!!!!

eric

Ideological Bigotry Part XIII–Physically Assaulting the Handicapped

Friday, April 25th, 2008

Even liberals have a low point that they would not cross. I just do not know where that low point occurs.

Once again, Bush Derangement Syndrome has led one liberal in particular to go overboard even by incredibly low liberal standards.

A basic premise ignored by many on the left is that just because one has the legal right to do something, it might be immoral. Just because one can do something does not mean they should. This starts with protesting.

When President Bush is giving a speech, protesters have the right to hold up signs and protest his leadership. That is democracy, and it is vital. Yet while these protesters are allowed to yell, scream, and shout vulgarities, I would argue that decency should request that they tone down the foul language.

Trying to win that argument is a nonstarter. I will instead go one step further and argue that the President’s family is not fair game unless they put themselves in the political arena. Hillary Clinton was fair game as First Lady because she injected herself into policy making decisions. Chelsea Clinton should have been off limits. Chelsea Clinton now is fair game because she is campaigning.

This is important because it was former President Bill Clinton that declared in his televised temper tantrum about Kenneth Starr that “all people, even Presidents, have private lives.”

John Kerry and John Edwards were hurt significantly when they brought up the sexual orientation of Mary Cheney. Vice President Cheney is fair game. His daughter, who was apolitical, and did not even play a role in her father’s campaign’s (her sister did), should have been left alone in peace.

Apparently the rules of civilized society simply do not apply to the great unwashed, aka liberals.

First Lady Laura Bush and her daughter Jenna have co-written a book. This book has nothing to do with the administration, or with anything remotely politically controversial. They wrote a children’s book called “Read all about it.”

Now unless one is violently opposed to helping children learn to read better, this should not be a political issue. Unlike a certain former First Lady, Laura Bush does not try to advance her agenda. She does what a First Lady should do…keep her mouth shut and talk about harmless warm and fuzzy issues. This is not sexism. Dennis Thatcher kept his mouth shut while Lady Margaret Thatcher did the heavy lifting.

Therefore, to show up and protest the Iraq War at a book discussion about child literacy involving people that had nothing to do with the decision to go to war is ludicrous, and not very decent. To curse and verbally abuse people is downright rude.

I am not sure liberals even acknowledge this part of the argument. After all, they see President Bush as poison, therefore everyone he touches is poison, therefore if his dog barks at them, they should bark back because the dog’s owner favored removing Saddam Hussein, who murdered many animals, as well as murdering many people that he tortured like animals beforehand.

Yet as I stated earlier, while reasonable conservative minds and liberal minds can disagree about the need to hurl epithets at private citizens, everybody should agree that violent protest is not an acceptable answer.

Liberals key cars. They remove lawn signs. Conservatives in general don’t do this because it would contradict the law and order platform we run on. Liberals are not bound by such constraints because liberals do not believe in constraints to begin with. There are not too many conservative republicans in blue shirts and red neckties out rioting in the street turning over cars and setting them on fire. Conservatives do not spray fur coats, raid animal testing factories and release the animals, or sit in trees and hurl epithets at innocent construction workers trying to do their jobs.

When did the peaceniks on the left become so violent? How can they be enraged at collateral damage in Iraq while harming fellow Americans?

While Laura and Jenna Bush were not harmed, an innocent victim in a wheelchair was not so lucky.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/04242008/news/regionalnews/bush_basher_smashes_disabled_teen__cops_107864.htm

The 22 year old leftist (I am sure none of his college professors taught him anything that led to his lunacy) started screaming at the First Lady and her daughter. A republican couple that had come simply to hear a speech about reading to children told the man to stop yelling. He was shouting obscenities about the Iraq War, and they wanted quiet.

The man responded by repeatedly punching their daughter, an 18 year old girl confined to a wheelchair due to cerebral palsy. As she screamed (in this case she had a right to scream), he punched her shoulder blades and her thighs.

Yes, the leftist nut job was arrested on charges of assault and resisting arrest.

No, that does not settle the matter.

The mainstream media has ignored the story. I read the New York Post because they actually will report stuff like this.

There were no calls from Barack Obama to come together and respect each other. Hillary Clinton did not issue a statement condemning an attack on her “sister,” especially since the perpetrator was one of those “big boys” that Hillary keeps claiming are ganging up on her.

This story got virtually ignored.

I have often compared leftists to Palestinians, because they simply will not recognize that the other side has a fundamental right to exist.

The solution in my mind is to give these leftist wack jobs the equivalent of the “Simpsons” treatment.

In an episode of the Simpsons, Lisa rigged an electric shock device to her cupcakes. Every time Bart would try to steal it, he would get a shock. He then learne dnot to take the cupcakes.

The next time a leftist tries to assault a wheelchair confined woman just for being a republican, electrodes should be hooked up to his extremities. He should be forced to recite the phrase “republicans are human beings.” He should also be required to say “republicans have a right to exist.”

Most likely, the person will allow for republicans, but not conservatives. After a shock, the person will allow for conservatives, but not Bush supporters. After another shock, the person will allow for Bush supporters, as long as they don’t like him now and are against the war.

Finally, at some point, this person will have a mirror thrust in their face. They will look at their electroshocked body and Don King like hair and realize that all they had to do was admit that republicans are human beings and they would be free to go.

I suspect that a healthy plurality of the left, especially the young ones, would opt for death. This is no different than the members of the Klan who would rather die than stand next to a black man, as Senator Robert Byrd used to say, albeit using stronger language.

This crazy man be the extreme, but the problem on the left is that the line keeps moving. Humanity gets blurrier and blurrier as every behavior becomes relative. To quote the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the left has “defined deviancy down.”

Conservatives condemn their lunatics. Liberals embrace theirs, and stay silent when a public embrace might be politically untenable.

Wendy and John Levitro are human beings. Their handicapped daughter Maureen did nothing to deserve the beating she endured.

If this were white against black, Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would be leading riots.

Yet when a liberal tries to bludgeon a republican to death, even a handicapped one, the melodic sound of chirping crickets is not far behind.

I began blogging to combat ideological bigotry. I will not rest until every liberal makes a pact to take their most hateful and cancerous elements, and get them to stop. They don’t even have to mean it. At least pay some perfunctory lip service.

The poorest and weakest among us are a cause celebre for the left…unless they are republican.

Such is life in a land where those who say violence is not the answer make an exception when it comes to a good old fashioned leftist style Bush bashing session, with the emphasis on bashing.

eric

The numbers do not add up

Thursday, April 24th, 2008

From Chicago to Atlanta to New York, the Tygrrrr Express is glad to back in Brooklyn.

The fallout from the Presidential race is still being dissected, but my thoughts tonight turn to cold hard numbers.

On a happy note, my favorite number at the moment is 99. That is the age of my grandmother, who I made absolutely sure made it into her bed safely. She turns 100 in less than a month, and the few days I will spend with her are invaluable.

She still wishes there are things that she could do. She was married for 67 years, and when my grandfather died at age 97, she was 94. She had always cooked for me, and walked on her own. The last 6 years have been tougher than the first 94 for her. I kept telling her that I knew how to walk across the street and get my own dinner, but she was always used to handling everything. She worries about one of her children (not my mother thank God) pre-deceasing her, and had to witness one of her 5 grandchildren predecease her at age 42.

She is a tough, strong, smart woman, and just knowing my grandmother was sound asleep in the next room made me feel at peace. Yet that peace is tempered with the reality that numbers are what they are. My grandmother simply cannot play tennis or dance the Charleston anymore. While she has not happy about such realities, she has done what many people do not do. She has accepted her situation, and gracefully prepared for what comes next. To her, what comes next making sure the next generation is prepared to grow.

Life is about growth. We either grow or we die. Yet some people feel that their time is on the verge of passing. It is now or never. Desperation sets in.

This is what I see from Hillary Clinton.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2008/04/24/do2402.xml&posted=true&_requestid=599349

I have never taken a psychology course. I am not a psychoanalyst. Yet as much as I enjoy watching the democrats beat each other’s brains in, a cold detached perspective sees a woman on the verge of collapse. She has locked herself into a viewpoint that if she persists, the world of numbers will cease to exist, and she will be President of the United States.

I have offered many reasons why she should never be President. I have discussed her numerous negative qualities. I have repeatedly stated she cannot govern.

Yet I have never counted her out. I kept saying that she would find a way to win. he would resort to any tactic, and it would work.

I was right about her willingness to try and destroy Barack Obama, but her window for succeeding seems to be closing. She defeated him by 10 points in Pennsylvania, but his pledged delegate lead only shrank from 160 to 145. There are only 9 conests, left, none of them as large as Pennsylvania. The largest remaining contest is North Carolina, which Barack Obama should win in a landslide.

I am not going to tell Hillary to drop out. As a republican, I am comfortable with her ripping the democratic party to shreds. As somebody who simply accepts that 2 + 2 = 4, I do not see Hillary surpassing Obama in the pledged delegate count.

So why continue?

I believe Hillary Clinton believes that something, somehow, will give her the nomination. Yet at what price? How much further should she and her husband enrage many of her past supporters?

Hillary often wrote about the “politics of meaning.” I wonder if she truly can find meaning in her life if she fails in her quest to be President. Al Gore found meaning in raking in millions of dollars and having people tell him they love him. John Kerry? He does not seem to have found much.

Chelsea is all grown up. Bill has his life making speeches. Hillary could focus on being a great senator, but her passion was never to be a Senator. She wanted to lead. She has always had to follow others. This was her turn.

The argument that somebody has paid their dues, and therefore it is their turn, smacks of entitlement. Bob Dole was gift wrapped a nomination for what seemed noting more than it was his turn. What neither of these people failed to do was inspire people.

Bob Dole was a great Senator, but he did not make people rally around him. John McCain inspires people. Barack Obama, for all his flaws, has energized the political process.

Hillary and Dole are technocrats. Michael Dukakis was a technocrat. Technoratic is a polite way of saying boring. President George Herbert Walker Bush once admitted that he lacked the “vision thing,” but the vision thing is important.

Ideology will trump competence because ideology is about passion. People run on competence when they cannot inspire passion. People govern effectively not by managing the bureaucracy, but by motivating people to do what they want. Leadership is not about making people do things. It is about getting them to want to do those things.

Hillary expected a quick primary victory based on name recognition. The fact that she lasted longer than Rudy Giuliani and Joseph Lieberman does not change the fact that when the numbers came in, people wanted somebody they could believe in to reach for the stars and deliver greatness.

Americans put a man on the moon. We won the Cold War and freed millions of people living under Communism. We invented the internet, and created a fledgling democracy that is the envy of the world.

Yet what Americans are most are realists. It is not about what we desire It is about what we can achieve. Ideas can seem farfetched, but if the evidence refuses to tell us that our goals are fantasy, then we persist.

Yet at some point we do decline. We decline healthwise. We become worse at things we used to do with ease. We move slower, think slower, and react slower. Everything around us moves faster.

Hillary Clinton sees her very best chance of being the leader of the free world slipping away. She will claw tooth and nail against all odds in search of a miracle because she know that the consequences of failing is most likely a rapid decline, at least from a political standpoint.

It is a cold reality, but people who run for President and lose are forced to confront the fact that their opinions barely matter more than the average person on the street. Nobody argues that Michael Dukakis is a bad person, but he went from almost being President to teaching at a college. Yes, that is a respectable profession, but it is quite a come down in prestige.

Hillary has more than most people will ever have, but like any hard driving person, falling short will hit her hard. Jon Corzine was fired as the head of Goldman Sachs. He eased his pain by becoming Governor of New Jersey. Richard Nixon bounced back from a tough loss to reach the top 8 years later.

Hillary does not have 8 years. She has maybe 8 weeks.

This is why she will do whatever it takes, regardless of who she hurts. The hourglass is running out of sand, and a life after a failure is not something she would handle well. She is not Fatal Attraction psychotic, but coping with rejection is not her strong suit.

We will know in several weeks, but 80% of traders on intrade are betting on Obama, with only 16% betting on her to win the nomination.

regardless of what anybody thinks about her, her only options at this point are destruction, cheating, or quitting. She will not quit, which makes for an ugly endgame.

She can protest all she likes, but it is about the numbers. They do not add up for her, no matter how hard she tries to manipulate them. She may rail against corporate greed, but she is the political equivalent. The air is out of the balloon, and the numbers cannot dance any more.

eric

Sensory Overload!

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2008

The Tygrrrr Express is offically on sensory overload.

So many things occurred on Tuesday, April 23rd, that it would be impossible to cover them all effectively. Therefore, rather than focus on only one topic, I shall make an effort to cover everything badly.

The Tygrrrr Express began yesterday in Chicago with the Chicago Cannonball. Last night I arrived in Atlanta, and tomorrow night I will be in New York. My office is on Wall Street, my grandmother lives in Brooklyn by Coney Island, and by sheer luck the Chicago Cannonball will be in New Jersey, allowing for another enjoyable night.

As for yesterday, sports and politics were going wilder than a Tygrrrr on Spring Break in South Beach in the pre-girlfriend era.

I kept thinking that Tuesday was Wednesday, so for those who want to see the last episode of “Law and Order” featuring Jesse Martin, you did not miss it. It is tonight. He played detective Ed Green for 10 years, and tonight is his swan song. Tuesdays is “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit.” It was either a rerun or a new episode. I missed it. Perhaps it was not shown at all due to the election coverage.

For fans of “South Park,” I thought I missed that as well. This Tuesday vs Wednesday thing is complicated when in a different city every night. The episode is tonight, and unlike my home, which has multiple televisions and tivo, my grandmother’s place does not get cable. There are 5 channels, some that are snow. Hopefully NBC is one of them.

My grandmother turns 100 on May 17th, so getting her cable seems pointless. As long as Willard Scott calls and the White House sends a letter, all is swell on the grandma front.

In sports, my head was spinning. Of course that could have been the ginormous steak with potatoes at the hotel,with dijon mustrd on the salad that had my mouth on fire. Or it could have been the Shirley Temple with extra grenadine that might have me loopy on a sugar high into May.

In hockey, The San Jose Sharks and Calgary Flames were tied 1-1 in the second period. Go to www.nhl.com for more information.

In basketball, the Phoenix Suns led the San Antonio Spurs 37-26 in the second quarter. Tony Parker, who plays for the Spurs, is still married to Eva Longoria from Desperate Housewives. The Suns have a gorilla as a mascot.

Is this great sports coverage or what? (Rhetorical question)

In the National Football League, I will be attending the Draft on Saturday at Radio City Music Hall. The Miami Dolphins have already agreed to a contract with offensive tackle Jake Long.

Now for a break in the action before it slips my mind. David Letterman’s monologue is hilarious tonight.

“Eliot Spitzer has the Earth Day spirit. He picked up some roadside trash. I believe her name was Ronda.”

“In the spirit of Earth day, I decided to do this show without any energy.”

“Hillary is trying to convince people she is pro-gun, and a hunter. She looks fabulous in her beaver pelt pantsuit.”

“Hillary claims she is pro-gun. No way. If she was Pro-gun, Bill would be dead.”

Ok, back to sports. In hockey, San Jose now leads Calgary 5-2 late in the second period.

Now back to football. No wait, basketball. Very early in the fourth quarter, the Spurs lead the Suns 81-72. Shaquille Oneal plays for the Suns. The Gorilla mascot does not play in the game, but he can slam dunk off of a trampoline, which gives me ideas on how to romance the Chicago Cannonball later in the year.

Now back to football. Jake Long is a Bill Parcells type of player. He is a tough, physical, wedge of beef. Parcells does not like flashy players. he likes tough guys. Jake Long is not a sexy pick. He is actually considered a very safe pick. Jake is not related to defensive star Chris Long, who is the son of Raiders great Howie Long, an ultimate tough guy. Nevertheless, with Jake long off of the board, the St. Louis Rams are now on the clock, followed by the Atlanta Falcons and the Oakland Raiders.

In auto racing, Danica Patrick won her very first race. It was an Indy race in Japan, and while this is not Billie Jean King defeating Bobby Riggs, it is still significant. Now if only I can get my hands on the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, in which Ms. Patrick poses. I wonder what she looks like when she grabs the stickshift at 200 miles per hour. I suspect she looks hot and sweaty, although that could be the nature of auto racing.

Bernard Hopkins lost to somebody in a boxing match the other night.

Ok, enough sports. Now for the main event.

In politics, the six week version of the Pennsylvania Polka has come to an end by the grace of God, or if you are an Pennsylvania Dutch Amish person or a Pennsylvania Quaker, the grace of either God or Wilford Brimley.

Hillary Clinton defeated Barack Obama 55-45%. A win is a win is a win. Yet despite having a coalition that basically consists of unattractive old hags foaming at the mouth over Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott’s love child, she outlasted Obama’s Coalition of elitist guilty white liberals sipping lattes and pretending to care for the other members of his coalition, aka black people.

I did listen to both speeches, and there were several things I observed during my sugar induced food coma.

Hillary spoke first, which seemed odd given that she won. Apparently she did not get the memo from former NFL Art Modell that “losers say very little, winners should say even less.”

This woman cannot be gracious. It is not her nature. Her speech was basically a “screw you” to everybody who counted her out. She is here, and we must all deal with it. She had nothing nice to say about Obama, or anybody else that was not a supporter.

Obama spoke last, and he was much more gracious. He did not offer a concession speech. He simply vowed to press on.

Both campaign had supporters that shouted out, “I love you.” Obama answered “I love you back.” Hillary said nothing.

Both campaigns had supporters that booed when the other candidate was mentioned. Obama told his supporters not to boo Hillary. Naturally, Hillary did not show the same class.

These may seem like trivial issues, but they reflect the character of the two people, one who is likable and friendly, and the other that is just plain nasty.

Obama will claim that this is no big deal. Hillary will then say it was a thrashing. Apparently she forgot 1992, when Paul Tsongas defeated Bill Clinton 34-26%, and yet Bubba claimed victory.

So nothing has changed. Hillary is still up against the wall (image deleted). In two weeks Indiana and North Carolina go to the polls. Obama should throttle Hillary in North Carolina, and Indiana is friendlier turf for Hillary, albeit less so. Obama is still in the driver’s seat. From a musical standpoint, Hillary has Elton John, while Obama has John Cougar Mellencamp, or whatever he calls himself lately. Hillary wins blue collar voters, yet her musical champion is a liberal elitist who as been knighted by the Queen of England. Obama has his supporters from the lear jet left, yet has his musical support from a guy who embodies blue collar America and Chevy trucks. These facts are as amusing as they are irrelevant.

For those who like to watch poker on television, CNN had a pair of kings, John and Larry. For those who wanted to see a pair of Queens, Adam Sandler and Kevin James were hilarious in the movie Chuck and Larry. For those that wanted a couple of jokers, Jimmy Carter made an @ss out of himself again by visiting some Hamas poobah. For those that want to settle for a pair of tens, Bo Derek starred in the movie, and the Chicago Cannonball looks fabulous all the time.

As stated earlier, it is on to Indiana and North Carolina where the debate will be a raging one.

No, not Hillary versus Obama. They are still both a waste of time. I am referring to the real debate that engulfs Indiana and North Carolina.

Indy racing versus Nascar. The Indy 500 in Indianapolis is raced on the same day in May as the Coca Cola 600 in Charlotte.

Hillary will support Indy because Danica Patrick is a fighter for women everywhere, while Obama will announce that he has supported Nascar from the very beginning, and enjoys “chaw” on a regular basis.

Bill Clinton will try and get Danica Patrick’s phone number, since getting his hands on the magazine is insufficient.

Ok, since this was written last night, off to watch CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, ABC, NBC, CBS, ESPN, ESPN2, Versus, TBS, TNT, and the NFL Network until my head explodes. Or I could relax in the hotel pool and jacuzzi.

Heck, there is a tv in my bathroom, which has a jacuzzi tub. Potential electrocution aside, this is a fabulous way to end the night.

The Spurs defeated the Suns 102-96, the Philadelphia Flyers won game 7 over the Washington Capitals on the road 3-2 in overtime, and the San Jose Sharks reaffirmed American supremacy over Canada by defeating the Calgary Flames in game by a 5-3 score. Soccer and baseball are still colossally boring, although less boring than golf.

In an homage to my friend the P*ssed Off Tree Rat, Hillary Clinton is like Rasputin. She cannot be killed off. The last person compared to Rasputin occurred when ESPN uber-announcer Chris Berman gave the honor to former Detroit Lions Head Coach Wayne Fontes. He finally eventually was fired, which means maybe Hilldawg will be as well.

As for today, I have actually been invited to participate on a conference call with Newt Gingrich at 4:20pm EST. Unfortunately, at 4:29pm EST, my plane from Hotlanta takes off for New York. Mr. Speaker, we will have to do it another time. I do not have the time.

Ok, like Whitney Houston, I am waiting to exhale. Deep breaths in and out.

Sensory overload indeed.

eric

Pope Benedict in New York

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008

Shalom.

That one word could inspire a generation of people.

In Hebrew, the word Shalom has three meanings. It means hello. It also means goodbye. Lastly, it means peace.

Pope Benedict XVI became the first ever Pope to visit an American Synagogue. He visited the Park East Synagogue in Manhattan, embraced warmly with Rabbi Arthur Schneir, and offered shalom.

The headline in the New York Post simply read “Shalom.”

The fact that this Pope is German makes the event especially meaningful. The bottom line is that beneath every powerful person is mere flesh and blood, and when the robes are stripped away, this pope is a man. Yet upon looking into his soul, I am convinced that he is a good man.

Not only did he become the first Pope to visit a Jewish place of worship, but he also attended a Mormon Church as well, that being St. Joseph’s.

New York City was on lockdown, with a security detail usually on reserved for the President. Even Edward Cardinal Egan was asked to show identification. The head of the New York Archdiosces was wearing his full Cardinal outfit, and yet had to clear security as any other private citizen. Secret Service agents doubled as food tasters, as all food was tested before the Pope ate it. All airplanes were diverted away from Manhattan, and ships were not allowed to enter the United Nations side of the East River. One of the security choppers had technology that enabled it to read the label on a shirt from a mile away. One resident living in the area tried to take pictures from his window, at which point the police quickly ordered him to close his window.

At virtually every stop he made, he loudly condemned the pedophile priest scandal that has rocked the Catholic Church.

Make no mistake about it. Pope Benedict made clear that he was not going to sugarcoat issues in his own house. For one thing, religion is a business, and recruitment is way down. The age of priests skews older, and young people today are simply not becoming priests. The pope seesa lack of people entering the cloth as threatening as any other world problem.

This man wants to confront evil in our time and defeat it. Yes, he wants to eradicate poverty, and wants richer nations to carry a larger share of the burden. Yet he also wants to confront the evils such as the Holocaust, which remained largely ignored until Pope Benedict’s predecessor, the late John Paul.

What was absent from this Pope’s remarks was overt criticism of America in general, and the Bush administration in particular. The War in Iraq is a controversial topic to say the least, and the Pope refused to upbraid those that took down mass murderer and torturer Saddam Hussein.

The pope also refused to condemn homosexuals or supporters of abortion rights. This does not mean that the official positions of the Church have changed. However, it does seem that an age of tolerance and acceptance of human beings that are different from the Church are slowly being recognized as legitimate.

In fact, the Pope and the President seemed to get along very well, which on a deeper level could also signal a warmer relationship between the Catholic Church and Evangelical Protestantism.

President Bush had the following two statements to make regarding the Pope:

“His Holiness believes that freedom is the Almighty’s gift to every man, woman, and child on Earth.”

“In a world where some no longer believe that we can distinguish between right and wrong, we need your message to reject this ‘dictatorship of relativism.'”

“Dictatorship of relativism” is a staple of previous addresses by the Pope.

While the Pope and the President have different means on several issues, there is a clear synthesis on the major issues.

The pope said, “America’s quest for freedom has been guided by the conviction that the principles governing political and social life are intimately linked to a moral order based on the dominion of God the Creator.”

In fact, the Pope even offered a thinly veiled justification for unilateralism, although not explicitly for the exact situations that justifed the Iraq War.

In speaking about nations that allow “grave and sustained violations of human right,” the Pope equivocated that “the international community must intervene.” This is certainly not the viewpoint of an isolationist.

Rabbi Schneir offered a window into the Holocaust, which shaped the life of the Pope, as well as of Jews everywhere.

“When you go through the ravages of war that Joseph Ratzinger (The Pope’s biological name) went through, and you encounter hunger, pain, suffering, and death, you resolve and you can go through anything to make sure that another human tragedy like this doesn’t occur.”

I have to confess that I was incredibly leery of a German individual becoming Pope. Others, such as homosexuals, might be leery of any Pope, given Church doctrine.

Yet this Pope seems to have struck a perfect balance. He has not revised Church doctrine, but he was respectful in tone with all the creatures of God. He stood with Jews and Mormons, and condemned hatred and evil deeds everywhere. Again, this included subordinates in his own Papacy.

The Pontiff is only one man, but one man can make the world a better place.

Being a good man is a good start, and Pope Benedict seems to be a thoroughly decent and righteous man. I hope his words are matched by deeds by all who heard his message.

eric   

  

More fun with Evan Sayet

Monday, April 21st, 2008

At the recent Republican Jewish Coalition conference in San Francisco, Evan Sayet entertained the crowd. Despite police officers asking him to leave, he insisted that he was invited.

I took that dig at him because when I called in to his radio show and told him that he was smarter than me, he replied, “Yes, and I am also handsomer.”

I would tell Evan that he is “full of it,” but given that we both celebrate Passover, he would argue that after eating Matzoh for two days, that would be expected.

Evan is a friend of mine, and I always enjoy seeing him. His book is available for pre order at Amazon. It is entitled “Hating What’s Right: How Liberals Wind Up On The Wrong Side of Every Issue.”

http://www.evansayet.com

Evan should be receiving an invoice for $5 in the mail, not including postage due on the envelope.

Awhile back I interviewed him.

http://tygrrrrexpress.com/2007/07/my-interview-with-evan-sayet/

Anyway, the guy is hilarious, and I am glad to know him. Below are some great lines from his most recent comedy routine.

“Jews could never be in charge of capital punishment. They would get home and be like ‘Did I leave the electric chair on?'”

“Ted Kennedy should be in charge of global warming. After all, he knows about rising water levels, he looks like a glacier, and he is often concerned about a lack of ice.”

“All the great empires tried to take over the world. Rome tried to take over the world. England tried to take over the world. We don’t even take over Canada. We have a military, they have Celine Dion.”

“We are good people. We did not steal cable from the Sudanese. When they were hacking a million heads, they might have hacked the one who was the cable guy.”

“Of course Jesus was Jewish. He lived at home until he was 30, and then took over and expanded his dad’s business. Mary was absolutely a Jewish mom. She rode Joseph’s @ss all the way to Bethlehem.”

“Hillary Clinton claims she has experience. Being married to Bill means she was the only woman in the White House not getting more experience.”

“There are areas where liberals and conservatives can compromise. Liberals will stop calling conservatives Hitler. They will compromise on Himmler. On gun control we can compromise. There will be no guns allowed for people with criminal records, psychological records, and Streisand records. On 9/11, when the towers were hit, we should have explained to the liberals that the event created a hostile work environment.”

“Christians and Muslims have to believe. Jews just have to be born of a Jewish mother.”

“I played my comedy routine in Dearborn. They put me up at the Ramadah.”

“Women may be voting for Obama, but it is hard to hear them underneath the Burkha.”

“Every time Mitt Romney mentioned Brigham Young, others thought of Bill Clinton.”

“Democrats are like children. In kindergarten, democrats are taught ‘don’t hit.’ Democrats now say ‘war is not the answer.’ Democrats are children. That is why Jesse Jackson talks in rhyme.”

“Liberals think they are smarter because they stray in school longer. They make arguments about how evolved they are, and evolution in general. We evolved from monkeys because we are better able to survive. What about the monkeys? Well, they survive too. As for the events, they were random and spontaneous, like Sandy Burglar, Monicagate, and Hillary’s billing records.”

“It is getting more difficult for democrats to play the race card. They are down to the last two jokers.”

“There was no vast right wing conspiracy. The Clintons were just sh*ts.”

“Al Queda is having a problem with recruits. AFter all, where do suicide bombers reenlist?”

“Cindy Sheehan is proof that some body types should not wear short pants.”

“Democrats think everything is relative. After all, one man’s genocide is another man’s mulch. One man’s rape and torture is another man’s weekend at South Beach.”

“Abu Gharaib involved putting panties on heads. That was my freshman year at college.”

“If we end up with socialized medicine, where will Canadians get a doctor?”

“Dennis Prager told Jerry Falwell that he will only stay Jewish until Jesus returns. Sounds good to me.”

Evan is right politically, and from a comedy standpoint as well. I only wish he had the pull in Hollywood to bring back the writers’ strike.

Now buy his book. When you go to the book signing, let him know that I am significantly more handsome than he is.

eric