The Continued and Proven Ridiculousness of the TSA

Let me preface this entire post by repeating what I have said before: I would make a really crappy terrorist. I'm practically covered head-to-toe in tattoos and have an air about me that makes strangers stop and stare as if I have altered their entire reality by simply walking by. I can't explain it but as a result, I've never fit in wherever I've been, be it elementary school, the Las Vegas Greyhound bus terminal or even the Land of Fruits and Nuts that I called home for over a decade in California. It's not like I have two heads or anything, nor do I have a deformed limb or third eye, it's just that I put out this weird vibe that screws with just about anyone I come across (and I'm sure anyone who has met me can confirm this). I'm not complaining, it's a pretty sweet power to possess most of the time. I tried blending in several times in my 20s and finally gave up, accepting that I will simply never be one of those blank faces in the crowd, tattoos or not.

As a result, though, I'd be the worst terrorist ever. Can you imagine a terrorist cell trying to recruit the obvious chick to do their bidding? Yeah right, they want people who can blend in, be anonymous, move like ninjas through the airport and do whatever terrible deed they have in store. Not only that but as much as I'm disappointed in America lately, I'm still a polite Midwestern girl at heart and hurting people just isn't my thing.

So with all that said, let me tell you how stupid TSA is.

On a recent jaunt to California (first time since I abandoned it almost two years ago, thank you very much), I only had 24 hours in the state and therefore had to make each one count. I managed to make a dinner date with my former gay office husband who I love to this day more than a lot of human beings on this planet at one of my favorite restaurants in San Francisco, Q.

If you are ever in town, I absolutely recommend a stop there if you can make it. Not only can you enjoy the local flavor real locals enjoy (not just the Disneyland-esque crap they offer tourists at the Wharf), but you will eat good, have magnetic letters to play with and can taste some of the best aioli you will ever try in your life, Q's trademark chili-lime. I don't know what they put in it but it must be a mixture of crack cocaine and unicorn farts.

Anyway... after dinner, I kindly asked (read: begged) our waitress if I could buy a vat of the stuff to bring home to DC, seeing as how I'd been craving it for the two years since I left San Francisco like a porn addict craves group scenes (trust and believe I told her as much). When she blessed me with an entire large container of it for the low price of $2.00, I practically squealed with joy. That is until I realized that I somehow had to get this stuff on a plane back to DC in my carry-on bag.

Entirely unwilling to spend $25 to check my one small bag for the return flight and resourceful girl that I am, I promptly hit Target and bought up a bunch of 3 oz. shampoo bottles from the travel section. I proceeded to carefully fill them with the precious aioli one by one until I had 9 perfectly packaged, TSA-approved bottles of the divine chili-lime ready to go.

But therein lies the ridiculousness of the TSA. Why did I even have to bother? It's obvious just to look at the stuff that it's SAUCE - delicious, precious, tasty sauce - and besides, there's that whole thing about me being obvious right? So what terrorist do you know that would be A) a blue-eyed white chick and B) trying to make a bomb out of delicious, precious, tasty chili-lime sauce? It's absolutely ridiculous. Can you even make a bomb out of bright orange, flavorful sauce? I can't say I know.

The problem here, obviously, is that TSA is staffed with a bunch of mall cop dropouts who are incapable of making decisions or observations. On a connecting flight on my way to California, I accidentally missed my terminal and had to turn around at the obvious DO NOT EXIT NO GOING BACK sign that led out of the airport. So of course the mall cop staffing the exit had to call in to the fellow TSA lackeys to inform them that there was a lone female turning around OH GOD ALERT THE AUTHORITIES SOMEONE IS TURNING AROUND. Good to know TSA is keeping track of obvious Americans who have trouble following confusing airport signs when the real terrorists are plotting their next attack as we speak.

So, like any good American, I brought my 9 ounces of sauce packaged in convenient 3 oz portions through security and lugged them home just like I planned to. No SSSS boarding pass, no additional screening, just an obvious American shlepping herself home on an overpriced airline that charges extra just to pick a seat.

Of course, I guess I owe the TSA a favor. The fact that I had to put the aioli in little squeeze bottles means I now have a convenient way to squirt the stuff on everything from burgers to sandwiches. SUCK IT, TERRORISTS!

God bless America! Don't let the terrorists win! And if they do, those bastards can't have any of my sauce.


Your Gifts Are Appreciated: How Obama Wants Your Money When Real Causes Actually Need Your Money

For the record, I have a few important causes. Back when I lived in San Francisco, I had a homeless friend I would gift clean socks and dinner and $20 bills to but now that I'm in DC, I stick to animal rights. Two of my cats are Washington Humane Society alumni and I've adopted one death row inmate from New York's Animal Care & Control who would have died had I not taken her in.

That said, Obama wants your presents. It's not enough that George Clooney and Sarah Jessica Parker have dinners to fundraise for the fucker, you better not take wedding china when you can give to the Obama campaign!

Got a birthday, anniversary, or wedding coming up?
Let your friends know how important this election is to you—register with Obama 2012, and ask for a donation in lieu of a gift. It’s a great way to support the President on your big day. Plus, it’s a gift that we can all appreciate—and goes a lot further than a gravy bowl.
Setting up and sharing your registry page is easy—so get started today.

Give me a fucking break! People are starving in Somalia, Pakistanis are being nuked by American drones and this asshole wants YOU to fund his campaign?

Instead of wasting your money on American political campaigns, why not try funding a small village, or giving to children who haven't eaten for days?

A small flock of chickens can have a huge effect on a family’s fortunes: eggs can be used for meals, or women can sell them in local markets to earn cash for other needs, such as repairing the house or sending children to school. Chickens are relatively low-maintenance animals, which is an important consideration for families who’ve lost everything in disasters like the Pakistan floods. We provide chickens to families so they can take charge of their own recovery.

Sure, instead of spending $80 on tolls from DC to NY I could have given to a presidential campaign but instead I wanted to save a REAL life.

JDA loyal, meet Cheddar the cat. She was scheduled to die in New York on May 25th but instead, I promised to come grab her, drove 250 miles and picked her up sick and sniffling from New York Animal Care & Control and gave her a safe, comfortable home in DC where she could live out her days happy, loved and healthy. But Obama still wants your money for HIS campaign while he's out there nuking kids in Pakistan and selling away your rights on a daily basis.

Let's keep it in perspective, folks. Spend your money wherever you want, I won't hate. Personally I will not give a dime to any of these political fuckers when animals die every day in our country and children are starving and Americans can't put food on their own tables. But hey, whatever it takes to get elected, right?

Look at that cat and tell me you'd rather put your money toward some puppet of the establishment's campaign over the life of a real living breathing creature on God's green Earth over electing yet another asshole who is just going to perpetuate the assholery of the asshole before him. Let's keep our priorities straight, eh?


From the Mouths of Hypocrites: Nobel Peace Prize Murderer Obama's Comments on Colorado Shooter

Here's what Obama said: "Now, even as we learn how this happened and who's responsible, we may never understand what leads anybody to terrorize their fellow human beings like this.  Such violence, such evil is senseless.  It's beyond reason.  But while we will never know fully what causes somebody to take the life of another, we do know what makes life worth living."

And here's what Obama did: "In an extensive analysis of open-source documents, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found that 2,292 people had been killed by US missiles, including as many as 775 civilians.
The strikes, which began under President George W Bush but have since accelerated during the presidency of Barack Obama, are hated in Pakistan, where families live in fear of the bright specks that appear to hover in the sky overhead."

Hope and change my ass, this guy is no different than the Aurora shooter if you ask me. Except the Aurora shooter got up and shot people himself, Obama does it from the comfort of the Oval Office with video game playing drone pilots sitting on their ass in Nevada doing the killing for him.

But it's OK as long as Americans aren't the ones dying, amiright?


TLP: Holy WTF, Batman!


Behind the somber responses of both President Obama and Mitt Romney to the Colorado shootings, pure politics was at play. Not in the statements the candidates made, but in how the carnage jolted the campaign.

The understandable decisions by both Obama and Romney to suspend campaign activities effectively froze the race. And it happened at a time when Obama, despite being hammered for his, "You didn't build that" take on free enterprise, had the upper hand. For all the defense Obama had to play this past week, Romney was struggling under the weight of his tax returns, as fellow Republicans piled on, making that issue even worse for Romney.

The key will be when the campaign resumes and the tone the candidates strike. Romney is about to get screwed by his schedule, with a weeklong trip to Europe and Israel removing him from the trail. Can he get back into attack mode before he jets off without seeming insensitive? Watch for Obama to keep playing the role of national daddy, continuing to worry about sending his daughters to the movies and hoping that Romney never releases any more taxes.

UPDATE: Daddy's going to Denver.


Sleeping With the Enemy: A Helpful Guide

What do you do when you're in a relationship with someone who, er, isn't quite on your political and moral wavelength? I've written about this topic before and still can't say I have it figured out even though I've had three years to puzzle it out. If having to watch an hour's worth of Lawrence O'Donnell is the worst of your issues, you're doing alright.

But sometimes the disparity is so obvious you can't help but shrink at the very thought of the awkwardness.

Carolyn Hax addresses this potentially awkward reader issue via WaPo:
I recently discovered that my boyfriend has some religious and political beliefs that differ wildly from my own. This normally wouldn’t be an issue except that when he met members of my family, he proceeded to make highly inappropriate and bigoted comments about them.
Yeah, when you stop talking about the remote and start talking about someone making an ass of themselves in front of your family, you have a bigger issue than just not seeing eye-to-eye on major social items.

The question continues:
We discussed some of his views and he agreed to keep the comments to himself, but now I’m nervous about introducing him to friends and family for fear of what he might say. Is there any way to recover from this or is it a deal-breaker?
Um, if you have to ask...

I, too, briefly worried about introducing my significant other to friends, lest he show up wearing an Obama t-shirt spouting off scary socialist manifestos at cocktail hour. I quickly realized that my boyfriend is actually the observing type who lets other people do the talking, making obnoxious chatterbox me putting my own foot in my own mouth far more likely than him doing the same.

As a general rule, you don't want to hang out with any one person or group of people capable of making asses of themselves when it comes to their views. Lively conversations about the world are fine but some people have real difficulty sticking to acceptable rules of banter. 

There are some things that are forgivable. As a libertarian, I obviously believe no one else's views infringe on my own as long as they are just that, views. What you believe doesn't effect me at the end of the day as long as you don't believe in stealing and eating my cats or skinning girls who have a lot of tattoos or any such thing that might directly impact my life.

When hooking up with someone who does not necessarily share your views, the key is to keep conversations about hot topics to a minimum unless you're both professional debaters who get off on a good argument.

Now, if you have to ask an advice columnist if something is a deal-breaker, you probably need to learn how to set your own boundaries. Can you handle dating someone prone to making inappropriate outbursts at the dinner table? I know I couldn't. When my mildly liberal boyfriend found out I was going to a Tea Party rally, he didn't call me a Faux News-watching, Bush-loving teabagger, he told me to have a fun day and take lots of pictures. See, how hard is that?

Personally, I have no room in my life for bigots. Assholes, sure. Smart asses, definitely. But bigots? Nah, life's too short for narrow-minded jerks cluttering up my personal space.

Grow up and go hit a political rally for your next man, OP. Sounds like you aren't cut out for sharing your life with someone that different from you.


Lifeguard Fired For Saving a Life In the Water

Just goes to show, kids, when in doubt, your best bet is to do the least that's expected of you.

Via CNN:
Tomas Lopez says he never thought getting fired would make him so popular.

Since he was terminated as a lifeguard Monday for disregarding a protected area to save a swimmer, the 21-year-old from Florida said his phone has been ringing off the hook with journalists trying to get his side of the story. He is set to make an appearance on CNN's "Erin Burnett OutFront" Thursday night.

"The reason I was fired is just ridiculous," Lopez told CNN late Wednesday night. "It is a ridiculous rule, really. What was I supposed to do? Just let the guy drown?"

The incident occurred Monday at Hallandale Beach in southern Florida.

Orlando-based Jeff Ellis and Associates, the company Lopez worked for, said lifeguards cannot go beyond the perimeter of the beach they are responsible for overseeing.
Lopez told CNN that lifeguards are expected to call 911 if anyone swims at their own risk in the marked area. Keep in mind the guy was making $8.25 an hour.

He did not get the name of the man he saved. "It is killing me. I really want to know what happened to the guy," he said.

Short version: the guy lived. The guy who saved him got fucked. This is how our world operates, folks.


The New American Normal: Box Wine

The economy has changed a lot of things. You see older cars on the road longer, families choosing to keep their humble digs over a McMansion, more coupons. Suddenly it's no longer cool to flaunt what you've got, lest someone out there get upset that you've somehow gotten a better hand throughout the recession.

So I really shouldn't have been all that surprised when I saw this ad for Black Box wine the other night. Box wine enjoys an even bigger stigma than Miller (whew, I'm going to pay for that comment with my fellow Wisconsinites but let's face it, the stuff is crap) and yet in the new normal, you've still got to get drunk. I've got to say I haven't indulged in box wine since before I was of legal drinking age so perhaps the stuff has actually managed to become drinkable in that time.

Black Box Wines Shattered Red TV Commercial from Black Box Wines on Vimeo.

Advertising genius? Maybe.

Personally, I learned the big bottles of Smirnoff from Costco will get you through in a cash flow pinch and might never resort to box wine no matter how bad it gets but that's just me.