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Burnett's Urban Etiquette

Monday, April 07, 2008

Monday Kickoff

So much to say, so little time. So let's get right to it:
  1. Car-dinger update - After nearly a week of telling me every day that the incident report was almost done, the security folks at my job passed the ball to the human resources department on Friday afternoon, saying in the 11th hour it was too sensitive for them to handle since it involved a potential dispute between employees. HR wasn't sure what to do initially and seemed to be under the impression that I nudged the security folks to pass the ball to them. I didn't. One HR person did give me good advice though: don't park next to the door dinger. Hmmm. Must bite tongue. Must bite tongue. Moving right along, by the time I left work Friday I was so frustrated with the whole thing that I told HR to drop it. So there you have it. I meant well. And all that got me was a headache. This isn't a huge deal. My good intentions haven't paved any road to Hell. But I'll certainly think twice before ever asking an employer to step in and help, if I ever find myself involved again in a non-work-related incident at work.
  2. Politics - With the plans the White House is pitching to bail out people who suddenly can't afford their ARM mortgage loans, I don't want to hear any gripes from anyone of either party about individual welfare recipients mooching off the hard-working taxpayer. This is welfare by a different name. And just like the "brand" of welfare that got lambasted in Ronald Reagan's political ads back in the '80s, this brand involves using tax dollars to bail out people who wanted their American dream to start now, even though they couldn't afford it in the long run. And yes the banks are at fault for issuing so many shaky loans in the interest of quick profit. But ultimately, before you sign on the dotted line, if you don't have sense enough to do a little homework and find out what ARM means then you don't deserve to be bailed out. And BTW, if you run an investment bank (hint: BEAR STEARNS) and you put all your eggs in the quick, easy money basket of high risk mortgage loans, then you're stupid too. Where's my govt. money for making my mortgage payments on time?
  3. Sex Study - I might have been reluctant to post about this one, since this is a rated PG-13 blog and all, but since the Miami Herald ran an article on this last week, I consider it fair game. Apparently a recent survey of sex therapists says that the ideal duration for intercourse is three to 13 minutes, 'cause on average it doesn't take longer than that for most women to feel "satisfied." Ladies, don't kill the messenger. I'm just reporting what these fine experts shared with us. So here's what I want to know: If this duration - three to 13 minutes - is acceptable to women, where did guys ever get the notion that they have to be able to perform non-stop for hours on end? Seriously, EVERY guy I know - I mean my buddies, not casual acquaintances - has always had the same fear in this department, that they won't be able to hang in there long enough to get the job done or to at least adequately display their stamina. It's the reason pornos, from what I've heard, loop the same scenes over and over to give the impression that sex between the stars always lasts for 30, 40, 60 minutes or more, before a conclusion is reached. Well, thank you very much Penn State University - Erie researchers. I am A OK....I think.
  4. Crime - This and this are what I meant when I posted a couple of weeks ago about parents being responsible for their juvenile children's criminal behavior. If you don't wanna click the links, one is to a story about a 7-year-old in Baltimore who went to school earlier this week with a loaded handgun in his pocket and a loaded handgun in his backpack. Authorities say he didn't mean any harm and probably snagged the guns while spending the night at his uncle's house. I'm pro-gun for honest, law-abiding folks, I mean if honest, law-abiding folks want guns, that is. But the adult(s) who left those guns where this kid could get them should be locked up for at least six months each. And they should have to do a year's worth of community service in a hospital ward, working with kids who get shot in avoidable circumstances. The other link is to a story about a group of third graders who brought handcuffs, duct tape and other crap to school so they could do harm to a teacher who'd pissed them off. Little bastards. Where in the world did they get handcuffs? Somebody's parents are either cops or freaks...or both.

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  • in my last job, if someone parked "illegally" in the company spot where i parked, we would leave a note explaning the situation on the windscreen that was stuck on with an adhesive powerful enough to require scraping off, not just stuck under the wiper. it might give the dinger something to think about, and you could do it anonymously without fear of retribution...unless he catches you in the act

    By Anonymous insomniac, at 8:30 PM  

  • Well of course the one that interested me was the sex story. It is nice that you have something for everyone though. Knowing this is a family blog I will just say, well no, can't say that, no, not that either. Okay, I got it. Sex is not an endurance contest. Skill wins over stamina every time.

    By Blogger wordsonwater, at 11:31 PM  

  • Car Dinger: Well- I'd be getting a set of those little hand lights that they use to direct and park airplanes , and make sure the dinger is pointed in next to the Human Resource Direcvtor .

    Politics: I should be getting something to reinforce the fact that it is a good thing that I PAY MY MORTGAGE ON TIME. Why are the delinquents getting the award?

    Sex Study: Heh heh heh... mind is wandering back a few years... mmm ahem. next question.

    Crime: I am awe struck (in a bad way) how our culture feeds children horrible movies, horrible music, and horrible parenting, and then is shocked when kids turn out horrible. huff. enough.

    I guess that was more than you wanted to hear. ô¿ô

    By Blogger Pamela, at 2:46 AM  

  • Car dinger - good point! It's called Freedom of Choice. Or something.

    Mortgages, & investments, have always been Caveat Emptor. Trouble is people just don't THINK these days, never mind reading the small print. Personally I blame all the "have it now" -type advertising, & TV shows.
    Specially the American stuff. ;)

    & guns etc. 'Scuse me, but when did a Sense of Responsibility get taken off the List of Requirements for Living?
    Or is it just that most people are so out to make a quick buck that they don't care?

    By Blogger Bronchitkat, at 5:49 AM  

  • Car dinger...have you talked to the person yet??

    Mortgages---I am with you 100%!! I guess that maybe they are trying to avoid another S&L scenario?? But still, it's so not right.

    Sex...I remember years ago reading about Sting going for 4 hours...then I think later he clarified that it included all the lead-up...dinner, romance etc!! said it right-little bastards.

    By Blogger Claudia, at 9:02 PM  

  • I know this is a PG 13 blog but truly I have had ex-boyfriends that could last at least an hour because they did not just do the usual but that's what I would expect from most men (that could be taken either way - I meant I would expect more than the usual but most men do the usual)

    By Blogger C, at 9:17 PM  

  • You've been royally tagged by Mimi Queen of Memes. Have fun!
    Message In a Bottle

    By Blogger Mimi Lenox, at 1:49 AM  

  • Greetings James. A serious comment here - not a joke okay.

    I think that it might be a good time to request to receive a company car. After all, this newspaper likes having you as a reporter and I would guess that they may have gone the extra mile to get you there.

    Why don't you let them go another half mile. Ask them to give you a company car in all seriousness and if they laugh or chuckle tell them why. Do it with a smile, do it with a straight face - it's up to you.

    I know you're not asking for advice so you can take it or leave it my friend but I thought about this from different angles and this seems like it might be the best way. And if the car gets dinged, well - it'll be up to them to resolve it. They might be more motivated in that case eh.


    By Blogger Robert Shapiro, at 4:10 AM  

  • Car... either breathe, relax, let it completely go OR be stealthlike and without any cameras seeing be childish and wrap some bubble gum around the door handle or something??? hehe
    Politics...shame on the banks! Big greedy corps are so pathetic but you are totally right too in that you have to know if you can afford a loan like that. If you are going to be in debt to someone for 20 or 30 years you should know the terms.
    Sex... I tried to figure it out last night but hubby didn't like me watching the clock. LOL JK
    I heard that about Sting and Trudy that they went for many hours but that it was romance and foreplay, things leading up to IT.
    I think if a woman has all her senses involved, you know maybe the smell of a nice candle, the taste of a glass of wine, the sight of her man, and him touching her... etc. then who cares how long things last.
    Crime... We don't own a gun but I support those who want to have them provided it's done lawfully and safely. In some circumstances, yes, the parents should be held responsible but it is a bit of a gray area. We have tried to teach our kids right/wrong etc. and they are great children but I know other good parents whose kids have gone down very difficult paths.

    By Blogger CrystalChick, at 7:27 AM  

  • Aren't you glad that HR is on the job. And they have been trained too!

    Aren't you glad that the head of the Fed actually went to the head of JP Morgan and got him to buy Bear Stearns to 'save' the financial system. Not exactly laissez faire. Next will ne auto loans.

    By Blogger The CEO, at 8:26 AM  

  • Insomniac, I like that sticker idea! Of course, I've talked so much about this incident and blogged about it twice now, that with my luck this guy could read my blog and be waiting for me out by his car with a baseball bat.

    WoW, I could almost feel you blushing as you typed that last part ;>) But your logic is good, from what I hear.

    Pamela, I can picture you blushing too! And that's not a bad plan. I'm gonna put a note on the dinger's car urging him to park next to security personnel or the HR person who suggested this could be fixed by me not parking next to him.

    Bronchitikat, I hate that choice with the dinger. That suggestion basically says that I should avoid his bad behavior, not that he should stop it. And of course you'd blame the American stuff. I'm teasing. There's enough guilt along that line of thinking to go around all the continents. I suppose North America probably has a larger share of it though. It seems like in these modern times we have perpetuated the whole now, now, now, attitude. Must roll that back somehow.

    Claudia, I have not talked to the dinger. I can't catch up with him. And I don't want to "abuse" my company resources to look up the guy's identity (from his license plate) and then track him down in his work department. Yes, this incident happened on work property, but technically it's not work-related...unless he dinged my car because he hates my writing or something. So I don't think I should look him up. I thought our ace security team would do the right thing and help me out there, since it did sort of involve a car "accident," but no such luck.
    As for Sting, what a fibber. If I counted everything - dinner, me singing (I'm kidding), and everything else I'd be good for a few consecutive days.

    Ah C, you raise an interesting point. If by the usual you mean the "usual" AKA the basics, then I refer you to what I said to Claudia. Throw in the other actions before the track meet starts - the stretching, the warm-up, the calisthenics, and so on, then the actual meet doesn't just last the 11 seconds it takes to run the 100-yard dash. It can last hours. So we're in agreement, I think. Not that I'm being defensive or anything ;>)

    Mimi Lenox, I'm caught. I will come by and get the meme details and perform. This reminds me, I have another meme to fulfill from Spoke in the Wheel. I'll try to do them both by this afternoon.

    Robert, I like the way you think. Unfortunately, the mantra in media outlets right now is belt-tightening, belt-tightening, belt-tightening. So I don't see a company car in my near future. To be fair though, we don't traditionally do company cars. Our photographers get company cars. But that's standard at every major paper. One of the papers I interned at in college had a whole fleet - about 30 - company cars for use by reporters. So if you could get yourself to work on your own, once there you could sign out a company car for the day, along with a company gas card, and go for it. I haven't visited that paper in years though. So as far as I know, with the economy being the way it is, they may have ditched that fleet of cars. Maybe when I grow beyond peon status. Right now, I'm no star. I'm just a squirrel trying to find a nut.

    Crystalchick, I like the bubblegum idea too. Will take under advisement...Just kidding bosses who are reading this right now! Yeah, Sting was full of it. Like I said, if I counted meals and other stuff I could log a few days. The banks just disgust me, plain and simple. And it really is a gray area on the crime thing. I waffle. But these kids were so young in this case, who else could you blame? I mean you could blame the kids themselves, but are they old enough at 7, 8, and 9, to fully grasp their actions. I'm just cynical enough to say maybe. But most people, I think, would disagree and say not at all.

    Monty, I love HR. It's my favorite department other than the newsroom. There. That should buy me some points. As for auto loans, people have been walking away from them for years now, already. You're right though. Soon the feds will be urging banks to give people furlows from having to pay their loans so they can save up the money to do it with, 'cause apparently those people didn't realize when they signed on the dotted line that their $-00 per month car payment would last...until the loan was paid off.

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 12:26 PM  

  • Don't get me started on the various long term corporate welfare plans - I'm getting pissed off just thinking about them...

    Who the hell are these sex researchers and why didn't they ask me?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:02 PM  

  • Wow that's really scary.

    By Blogger Winter, at 3:10 PM  

  • Jali, we're on the same page w/the corporate welfare. And I'll send the sex researchers your way.

    Winter, which part? All of it? I could see that. Actually, I agree - the kids, the other stuff, just not the sex thing though. That's not scary.

    By Blogger James Burnett, at 5:40 PM  

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