a99kitten's Musings

I blog about a WHOLE LOT of stuff :)

So….”feminists” and the media bloated in political correctness flamed Marvel all over the internet with this VARIANT cover drawn by an artist for this Spider-Woman comic:



But J Lo just tweeted out this tonight:




#stupid and #ridiculous

These shoes were $525 in 2008. They are $965 now. Do NOT tell me there is no inflation. #governmentlies


Smokey decided on a different route this morning than the last few days. As we are walking I hear coyotes going bonkers again. And we are obviously heading in their direction as it is getting louder. A thought pops into my head about the little husky girl who lives close to there. And is allowed to run free (grr.)

As I turn from the street to head onto the trails I see the lady who lives a couple streets away with 2 of her 3 dogs leaving and walking back towards her street. The lady who has the little husky girl. But the husky is not with her. So I instantly thought “ohmygosh – my earlier thought!” about the coyotes. But NO WAY could this woman just leave her little dog up there?? I must have just missed seeing her?!?!

This husky is small. I’ve actually never seen such a small husky but she is feisty. She is literally about 1/3 the size of Shadow. But what she lacks in physical size, she makes up for in sass. She doesn’t ever back down from any dog and walks up to everyone. And basically is Queen of her street. She used to love Angelus (who didn’t?) but she gives a little grief to Shadow and Smokey. She likes them – tail wagging, follows us – but she treats them a bit differently than she did Angelus. More like she asserts her Queenliness to them.

Anyway, she is tough. But still – she is small and 1 dog. I could hear at least 2 coyotes. And there was no way I could just walk away thinking that all day. So up we went into the forest – getting closer to the coyote yipping. Smokey was excited actually. New forest to smell is always a good time :) He was on leash and frankly I was not too worried about him and I but I was really hoping I didn’t find any coyote den or a hurt dog.

Then I saw 1 of the coyotes who kept howling and yipping as he saw me approaching. I walked kind of closer but around and that scared the other coyote who was closer to us but hidden. He/she shot up out of the bushes towards the the other coyote. Then I saw a white butt and tail tear out of the bush and down the hill. And the 2 coyotes took off up the hill.

I tried to follow the white butt and tail but no way we could catch up (Smokey said he could have easily caught up if he was off-leash!) So we got out of the forest and headed towards the house where the husky lived. And there she was – sitting right in front of her driveway – in the street as usual (again…grrr.) She had dirt all over her head and paws.

I have no absolute proof that was her up there. But all circumstantial evidence points to it. It also points to the fact that her mom left her up there to deal with the coyotes on her own. Something that I cannot even fathom. But I hope I helped anyway. Perhaps it wasn’t her at all. Or perhaps the husky does this all the time and is fully capable of taking care of herself and I wrecked her fun time. But leaving your dog alone in the forest with 2 (or more) coyotes is disgusting. I want to go back over there with a bat and knock sense into that stupid woman. Sigh.

Smokey had a good time though :)

Every day over the last 2 weeks, I have seen news “news” stories about why people will argue over Thanksgiving because of discussing politics, healthcare, etc, etc. Things are pretty polarized right now and the media loves nothing more than to stoke that even more.

How about this? Apply the old adage of do not discuss politics (or religion in some cases) at the dinner table. If you know people disagree with you, and you won’t be changing anyone’s mind just like they won’t be changing yours, why ruin a family holiday/dinner/get together with subjects you KNOW are bombs.

Yes, it’s nice to be right. And of course you feel you are (I know I do!) :) But entering into a losing battle is stupid. And throw in alcohol consumption and you’ve got yourself a doozy. So just stop. Even if that ignorant, know-nothing uncle, aunt or in-law keeps pushing your buttons. It’s not worth it. Because then everyone gets angry. And looks dumb. And there is a good chance those people will leave early anyway to make sure they get in line for their cheap junk because THAT’S what the holidays are all about – not enjoying the day spending time with family.

And all the kids listening to the bickering? They will have another memorable family get together. Which is why when they grow up, they have Friendsgiving.

Cynicism: a Greek philosophy of the 4th century B.C. advocating the doctrines that virtue is the only good, that the essence of virtue is self-control and individual freedom, and that surrender to any external influence is beneath the dignity of man. — Cynic, n. — Cynical, adj.

I was catching up on my Vanity Fair reading in the sun yesterday. Actually just my legs were in the sun. It was so hot that my head felt like it was going to spontaneously combust after 15 minutes. And just why exactly are calves the hardest part to tan?!?! Anyway…

I have not read my VFs since last year so I have a stack of them. They are more of a summer time in the sun reading item for me. I like to page through the entire thing including the Letters section. I noticed 2 people wrote in about inaccuracies from an article about King Tut. It happens all the time and usually the pat response is “we stand by the author, the end,”

But in this issue, someone pointed out that the packing and shipping of the artifacts wasn’t entirely explained (having to do with political upheaval, the navy, etc. not just packing tape issues. Actually interesting details.)

The second letter pointed out that the article stated that the “Treasures of Tutankhamum” tour concluded at the Met in NYC when, in fact, it went on to the DeYoung Museum in San Francisco afterwards and that the attendance surpassed that of all other shows. And even that the museum stayed open longer several days a week (until midnight) to accommodate all of the visitors.

VF replied that the original article by the author included all of these details but they were cut due to space constraints.

Really? It’s a 13 1/2 page article (about half were photos.)

So a couple details about a subject you were writing about were just cut? And by cutting the SF detail, you could say the article stated a falsehood by saying the show concluded in NYC. I assume anyone taking the time to read the article was doing so because they are interested in the subject and wanted to know about it. So who decided these were insignificant details to simply cut?

But I’m not some huge Tut fan or SF museum tour fan insulted by this slight. No, my bigger question is how many times does this happen in more “important” articles such as Vanity Fair’s tiresome Obama and liberal ass-kissing/bashing anything and anyone not drinking the Kool Aid being force-fed to everyone.

The media’s job now is to sell magazines, newspapers, ad clicks, get eyeballs on the site and unique visitors up. The truth? Include all the facts? That’s just silly and old-fashioned. We report what we want to report. What we think you should read.

This is why I never, ever, ever just believe anything I read in a magazine, paper or anything from any “news” outlet. But you’d hope that at least the fun/fluff subjects would be easier to be honest about. I guess not.

Started my hike with Shadow today on the paved path. I had him up on the path versus by the river to walk past a section where some birds are nesting. We don’t need anymore carnage. As I was coming around a bend, I saw a woman with her dog on leash yelling at another older woman with an off-leash lab. Shadow and I have met the lady and her lab before and the lab is pretty darn innocuous. But I didn’t see what happened so what do I know.

Then as the woman was approaching us on the path, I see that she is on her cell phone. She is talking but I assume to whoever she was on the phone with. Shadow was walking on my right sniffing stuff but then saw the dog and crossed in front of me to go see the dog. He’s actually really good with other dogs and likes to sniff and say hi to everyone. Then the woman starts yelling “leash your dog please!”, so I grabbed Shadow long before he got up to her dog. Easily 5-6 feet away. As she walked closer her dog starts pulling and growling and she says “Nice. Thank you sooo much for leashing your dog” quite sarcastically. As she walks by us with her dog snarling she says “you need to show some respect.” Umm. Excuse me? When YOUR dog is being the aggressive one?

I say back “this is an off leash area.” She argues that if you see someone with a leashed dog, you should put your dog on leash. I respond “No – this is a popular off leash area and every other dog is off leash as well. And YOUR dog is trying to get mine who is just quietly standing here” She screams back “You need to show me respect and leash your dog!!” Screaming like a fracking nutbag. I shake my head, say “All about peace baby” and walk away. I was *not* spoiling my walk with this freak. She was a glaring example of a modern dirty hippie. Long stringy hair, tie dyed tank top, VERY obvious unshaven arm pits (GAH! Cover that nonsense up), and heavily tatted up arms. All she was missing was a giant neon sign flashing hippie. Although one who clearly didn’t smoke enough pot this morning to take the edge off of her day.

Behind me, I hear her yell at this old woman with her VERY old off-leash dog (Shadow and I had just passed them.) WTH? Who yells at an old lady with an old dog. Also, keep in mind, she never once got off the phone and put it in her pocket. Stupid hag.

I understand having a leashed dog where there are off leash ones can be stressful. It’s hard. I used to keep Angelus and Storm on leash a lot as they were typical huskies. Take off at the drop of a hat to explore. They were only allowed to go off-leash at a fenced dog park or a beach that was very protected. Or in the snowy forest. Angelus was never aggressive but Storm could get into it with some dogs when he was younger so I would always scout out the dogs first. And having a dog on leash, in a leash-only area, and having an off-leash dog come running at you is stressful too. I’ve had that happen plenty of times. It usually ends with ever popular “Oh, my dog has never done that before”.

But bringing your aggressive dog to a very popular dog area where dogs are always off leash is just plain stupid. And irresponsible. Happened a couple times last week. First a golden retriever attacked Shadow, who just sniffed him (Goldens are not the dream dogs people think they are) and the woman asks “Is your dog a male?” Yes I say. “Oh, he is aggressive with males.” If you know that, then why the hell is he walking off-leash you stupid wench?? 2 minutes after the altercation with Shadow, I hear him do it to another dog on the path. Gah.

Then a couple days later a woman with a giant pitbull, who she could barely control, started pulling and barking at Shadow and 2 black labs he was playing with. It was a Saturday and the place was full of dogs so what the hell was she thinking? I took Shadow down to the river and I could hear her dog barking at several other dogs as she continued her walk on the path. Nice.

It boggles my mind when people think everyone around them should cater to their needs. Sorry. Not the way it should work. Unfortunately society has started to go this way more and more and people just expect it.

“All about me – who cares about anyone else.”
“I’m not responsible”

If your dog is aggressive, you need to keep him/her on leash. Period. And if they are aggressive on leash if other dogs approach them, walk them in a leashed area only. Where all dogs are on leash so there are no attempted meet and greets. Because that is what dogs do. But getting agro and yelling at people and expecting them to cater to you and your needs. No.

So I drove down to the bay area yesterday for some appointments. It’s funny because I as drive down the mountain, through Auburn and Sacramento valley, I was thinking it was a calm, easy drive. Hit the tail-end of the morning commute traffic in Roseville but I planned the drive to avoid any commute traffic in the East bay/SF area. Yeah….

It was 11:00am when I got to Berkeley. It should take me 15 minutes to get from there across the Bay Bridge. Took 45. Non-commute traffic on a weekday. What. The. Hell?

Was nightmare traffic all the way down 101 to Palo Alto. Once in Palo Alto, an old man almost crashed into me as well as run over a pedestrian because he failed to notice the GIANT sign and painted words on the asphalt designating the lane he chose as right turn only. He thought that only applied to others apparently and went straight. The girl in the crosswalk in front us, who he almost took out, looked like she wanted to shoot the guy in the face. Rightfully so. I would have helped her.

Finished my Palo Alto appointments and headed to the coast for the last of my appointments. Again, non-commute hours. 2:45pm on a weekday. Driving up Sand Hill Road to 280 and 2 different cars ran stop signs and almost took out cars or bikers. One guy held up traffic so he could do an illegal u-turn right in front of the No U Turn sign. Guess that sign didn’t apply to him.

I won’t mention the numerous jackasses (statistically almost always in a Prius) that claim the fast lane as their own and go 55mph on the freeways. I literally want to punch them in their faces.

Then on Hwy 92, a huge truck decided that the center line divider was merely a suggestion and almost caused a huge accident by gong waaaay over the line and taking out all of the oncoming cars. Thankfully he dropped his cell phone and corrected in the nick of time probably only causing a mild heart attack in the driver of the car first in his path.

I left the coast around 7:30pm after checking traffic online and seeing both ways to Highway 80 were equal in their suckage. Chose the Bay Bridge over 880. A guy on 101, near the 101/80 split stopped his car in heavy traffic, put on his blinkers, and pulled out a map. Yep. Car wasn’t stalled. No car problems. He just wanted to see where he was going. So who cares about the hundreds of cars around and behind you. Not kidding. Pulled out a map. First of all – who the hell has a paper map anymore?!?!?! After tons of cars were honking, he put the map down and drove off flipping off the car behind him who dared honk. I was in the lane next to him so I saw it all. Unreal.

On 80 somewhere between SF and Cordelia (I don’t pay attention to those places except the exit to Napa!), a guy went from the far left lane all the way across to an exit. I guess he realized he was about to miss his exit. And who cares about the 5 lanes of traffic you just cut off and caused everyone to slam on their brakes? They aren’t important.

Once I got out of east bay, traffic cleared up. There were spots of slowness due to nighttime road construction but nothing major. And no idiots showed themselves. I’m sure they are out there, but simply statistically less of them once out of the way-too-crowded bay area.

I lived in the bay area during the dot com boom and the traffic then was a nightmare. Every day. All the time. You can never just go anywhere. You have to plan on horrific traffic. Weekend jaunt? Ha! Plan an extra few hours of sitting in or navigating traffic. It’s stupid. The biggest stupid part is the local governments all talked about expanding the roadways, blah blah back during the dot com boom. They did start working on Highway 101 then. They are still working on it. 13-15 years later. Awesome.

The place is simply too crowded. And it will stay that way as long as the area stays successful. And who doesn’t want that? Of course we do. BUT, people need to learn how to drive. If people just applied common sense and **paid attention**, a lot of accidents and slow traffic could be avoided. But that won’t happen.
And guess what? You are not the most important person in the world so you don’t just get to do whatever you want. There ARE other drivers out there. You do have to look when merging. You need to look in your mirror or turn your head, Not just close your eyes and pray no one is occupying the space you want to move into. But also need to merge. Not come to a complete STOP on the on-ramp and sit there too scared to move. ARGH!!!! Get off the road. Turn in your license, sell your car and take the bus.

I know traffic is bad in other areas. We are not alone in that. But I am willing to bet we have some of the WORST drivers in the US in the bay area. The Worst. Worst. Worst. Ever.

Now I am back in the mountains. And so happy. Peace. Sure the tourists are stupid in the winter and cause all sorts of problems with their inability to drive in snow and ice. But it’s still waaaaay better than dealing with the mess and masses in the bay area. And guess where most of those tourists are from……

This story is sickening. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-04-05/obama-budget-calls-for-cap-on-romney-sized-iras.html

“Under current rules, some wealthy individuals are able to accumulate many millions of dollars in these accounts, substantially more than is needed to fund reasonable levels of retirement saving,” the statement said.

Who exactly are YOU to say what is a reasonable level of retirement savings for me? You don’t know my life, my responsibilities and IT’S MY MONEY. That I worked for and saved and invested smartly, not spending it, so that I have it for me and mine later.

I am the one working my butt off for years to make sure I have enough because unlike government stooges, I don’t have a tax-payer funded pension plan and health benefits to live off of for the rest of my days.

For every “Romney-sized” retirement account, there are tons more of “regular” people who socked money away for years and watched it grow. Doing nothing wrong. Doing the right thing which is saving for their retirement so they are NOT dependent on the government or anyone else.

And since there is *NO* way Social Security, that I pay into all my life (and might as well burn the money in the driveway for all the good it will do me), will be around to help me, shouldn’t I be doing everything I can to make sure I (and my family) will be OK?

I think the thing that makes me sick the most is this class warfare rhetoric is used over and over by a government that spends so much more than it can take in and sees nothing wrong with it. Just tax people more. And more. And more. Take. Take. Take. All the while these same guys are SO corrupt.

And people who have no intention on saving since they know the government “safety nets” will take care of them, and have no drive to change their situation (in no way can you argue that everyone wants to work as hard. No. Way.) are the ones who vote these idiots in. Repeatedly. Because why wouldn’t you?

The government continues to take steps that make being successful a bad thing. To strive to be successful is becoming more of a detriment since you can just live off your fellow citizen’s hard work while working much less.

This is not the American Way.

Much has been made by Yahoo’s decision to pull the plug on remote employees last week. I was surprised by the decision since a lot of Bay Area companies have been allowing this for awhile now and it’s been gaining traction as a good way to attract employees. But I also understand why a company would make that decision.

I read a LOT of con articles, a few Pro and listening to pro and con on CNBC. I honestly wanted to smack a lot of the writers of the con articles, especially when they morphed into saying Yahoo was against women and mothers. And draconian. Give me a break.

I work from home. But I work for my own company so I get to make those rules. And if I don’t get my work done, I can fire myself with very little fanfare, threat of lawsuits or fear of taking to the internet with my gripes….against myself.

But I didn’t always work for myself (well…was still partially my company but totally different.) I was HR. And did receive requests for work from home policies. And we said no repeatedly for years. Not one single executive actually wanted it. Some said it would make some employees happy and they would live with it if the company established a policy, but none really wanted it. There are a lot of reasons for that. And some of those are the exact reasons Yahoo laid out as to why they were stopping their remote policy.

I get that, especially in the bay area, you can spend a fair amount of time on the road because you live far away due to housing costs or choosing to live away from the hectic business areas, near better schools, etc. Plus traffic is hellish. But that’s the way the bay area has been for years and years so it’s no surprise to anyone.

And I also get that, as a parent you want to spend more time at home with your kids. But that’s the exact reason I don’t think you are working as much as you should be if not in the office.

Face it – not every job can be done as well remotely. And really face it – not every employee can be trusted to work as efficiently when not in a work/office environment. And there are a lot of administrative reasons to not want employees working away from home – confidential/proprietary information worries, workers comp and labor law BS, etc. I was 100% against it as HR. Most of those things are never thought of by the complaining employees. Or reporters.

And frankly, the employees that we eventually allowed to work from home didn’t seem as part of the team. This includes me! When I changed my schedule to work from home part-time (before transitioning out completely), I noticed how I felt less like part of the team. And I didn’t have a department to miss – I simply reported to the CEO.

It all of a sudden becomes harder to get those employees to Team Events (even a dang holiday party for fun!), to team building things, company meetings, team lunches, department meetings, etc.

I know at least some of these employees at Yahoo took the job after being told they could work remotely. And yes that does stink. But company policies can change. And you have the option to change with them or not. But to cry and complain that you have to GO to work in order to keep your job is a bit ridiculous.

It’s not the job of a company or a CEO to make all decisions to make life easiest for the employees. It’s the goal of the company to create excellent products that keep customers happy and make money for their investors and shareholders (some of which are probably employees via options and stock plans!) And make money for the company. And a lot of this money is then spent on salaries, bonuses, benefits, perks, etc FOR the employees.

It is a job. You are employed. And if the company thinks they can get more and better work product out of their staff by having them work together and not apart, then that’s what the company should do. And you can feel free to quit and work elsewhere. I can pretty much guarantee that your job will be filled pretty quickly.

So let’s see, how many news organizations/journalists touched this story without apparently checking any facts? And yet the facts were clearly there to be dug up.

Sports Illustrated
South Bend Tribune
Fox Sports
New York Times
NY Post
Associated Press
Los Angeles Times

I’m pretty sure all of the above (except maybe the South Bend Tribune?) have WAY more resources than Deadspin. But there are almost no real reporters nowadays. There are just a bunch of jerks who sit around trying to beat the rest to the fastest tweet or FB update or the blingiest link bait. It’s entertainment now, not news. Have you looked at what passes as news stories nowadays? Too much time/space to fill up and eyeballs to try and catch. Who has time for silly things like fact checking or investigating what you are putting out there as fact.

There was tons of false data during “Superstorm” Sandy. Tons and tons during the Sandy Hook shooting. And those are just 2 recent examples. I’m sure there are plenty more on a regular, daily basis that doesn’t make such a splash.

I’ve never even heard of this guy and, frankly, don’t really care since besides making himself look foolish, I don’t know what real harm came from it. But I love when reporters are shown to be idiots I believe most are.

I have no idea if the above represents all of the “news” agencies who wrote about this. I simply read the Deadspin article and copied down the news agencies. But I’m not a reporter. And have never claimed to be. So I have an excuse to limit my fact checking to simply reading someone else’s report.