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Everything posted by dave32

  1. Somehow this notion has taken hold in pop culture that longevity trumps all; quality of life, richness of experience, etc. Personally, I'm a big believer in fear. Not threats or intimidation or causing fear - fuck that, but I mean as a personal emotional driver. When I see people around my neighborhood with these 'no fear' bumper stickers I just think -- frickin idiots. I think a better one would be 'some fear.' But people fear the wrong things, and go for the most bland life possible in the hopes of etching out a couple more years on the calendar. THAT is my fear. There is a Helen Keller quote I love: "Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing."
  2. Mari Colvin killed in Syria this morning. Liked and respected her. RIP. Her final broadcast last night. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nww7rRSq0x8&feature=player_embedded#!
  3. "The End" - Documentary about rough characters brought up in difficult circumstances on London's East End. The film lets these guys tell their own stories. Victor Dark, Bobby Reading, Les Falco, et al. The Guardian was a little tough on it because the film was created by the twin daughters of Les Falco (I guess you'd call him a Boss on the East End - as it was years ago), but I thought it was well done. No air of cheesiness about it. As a matter of fact, I wish there were guys like that where I live now. From what I can see, young gangbangers in LA have no discernible values at all, despite any romantic ideas people might have. Anyway.
  4. Stacy Peralta, also did Dogtown and Z-boys. If you haven't seen it, give it a watch. When I watched Crips and Bloods I thought -- hold on a second, I've seen these guys before. Sure enough, one of the narrators (an actual longstanding crip) had a role in 'Training Day,' which utilized actual gangmembers for several scenes (didn't know prior). Anyway, it is an intelligent discussion of the evolution of the gang epidemic in LA. One of my favorite clips from Dogtown/z-boys: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fGehaXk09pc&list=FLSfVYwN0m9LZbQpviGNUjRQ&feature=mh_lolz
  5. RIP Joe Frazier. Re: Cassius Clay. When I was a kid in grade school, 5th or 6th grade, had 4 posters on the bedroom wall -- Kenny Stabler, The Clash London Calling, Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders, and Muhammad Ali. Around 1980. Ken Stabler and Ali's time in the spotlight was already waning at that point -- but I knew who they were and idolized both as great outspoken athletes with electric personalities that inspired people. Can certainly understand the appeal to youth. Ali may have had faults and been wrong, and I don't know him to the extent of others here --> but there's no denying he did great things and left a mark on history (and not all bad), and there's no doubt some of this cost him personally. Ps. Next post will be from BKK, or somewhere in LoS. Debating whether I should scoot on down to WalMart to pick up an inflatable raft before the flight.
  6. Watched it last night. Would've never picked this film on my own but saw your rec and thought -- ahh, what the hell. Anyway, they took Blair Witch Project and turned it into something entirely different and it worked. A lot of inside humor (and I imagine there was even more I missed that would be appreciated by a Norwegian) - but also sucked you in. Very well done, especially considering the subject. Loved it when the cameraman was killed and they were all wondering to each other: 'why didn't he just tell us he was a Christian' (you have to see the film to get that).
  7. So let it be said. So let it be written. So let it be done. -Pharaoh, Ancient Egypt (sans the smilie)
  8. A few mates of mine (good mates, spent a lot of time with in the past but they've moved away from Southern California), are traveling through SE Asia the same time I'll be there next month. So they tell me, go to Pattaya 11/21 to 11/24. Being an upstanding citizen I follow through. And then these fuckers tell me to change the dates to 11/18-11/22. BUT I CAN'T. Baaah! So, it'll be good to see old friends for an evening, then I'll be rolling on a solo mission in Pattaya a couple nights. Forgive the intro, I guess that's irrelevant to the question eh? Oh yeah, here's the question: I'll probably be doing a long pub crawl (well, beer bar with occasional go go crawl is more accurate), and then hitting freelancer spots late. Which I've never done in Pattaya. So -- I'm aware of some places: Insomnia, Walking Street Disco, Marine, and Lucifer. Anybody have input? Is Insomnia any good? btw - seeing Lucifer on your top 5 pretty much guaranteed I'll investigate it. Gratzi! And figured this kinda ties into this thread.
  9. When I visited Berlin in early 90s, after high school - but before Uni, ended up extending a three week trip to a year. I was that guy staying on the couch that never left. There was a large and tight-knit community of black American expats from the military. A lot of them hung out around the u-bahn stop Oskar Helene Heim. Kinda like Washington Square. I used to call them the OHB Brothers. Got to know some of those guys, interesting thing was --> they did not like to spend time with African expats in the city, oh no. And they got pissed off when people called them African. The rest of Germany definitely did not have many blacks, but there were quite a few in Berlin (then). And btw, I could not detect any racism at all, except perhaps with the much older generation, between whites and blacks in Germany. EDIT: I should say in Berlin instead of in Germany. If you left the city and headed south, it was a whole new ballgame. Have no idea what it's like now that the assimilation of East Germany and switch to the Euro have taken place (the reunification just started when I was there and it was not something people were happy about after the initial euphoria subsided, it placed a crushing burden on the West). But, there was overt hostility between the Turks and the Germans. You saw graffiti like "Turken Raus!" all over public restrooms. The 'edgy' part of town was the Kreuzberg, where the Turks lived, and many Germans wouldn't go there. My understanding is that there was a depleted resource pool after WWII and Turks migrated to fill those jobs. They didn't really adopt German culture though and there was a clash of values. From what I could see it was a mutual rejection of each other from both sides. My favorite convenience food in Germany was the Doner Kebab. Love em. I laughed when I went to Pattaya and saw the Germans had exported it there. It's a Turkish dish.
  10. The problems with the economy are significant and on that front, the Obama presidency has not been a success. He used his resource pool of political clout to push through the healthcare plan, but at great cost, with piss poor fiscal planning. Not good. I like his emphasis on infrastructure but there needs to be more. All that said, in my eyes a Republican victory would be a nightmare with more tax cuts to the wealthy and even greater irresponsibility managing the debt/economy, while using scare tactics to increase social controls and macho military posturing. The democrats are fucking morons and they suck, but the Republicans... they scare me. It's alarming how easy it is for things to spiral out of control, and we're in a vulnerable and fragile place. It's going to take time, effort, and intelligent management in the government to establish better footing. While I think many of Obamas advisers and cabinet members are weak, they're better than the alternative.
  11. Well hell, lets not discount Neil Bush, another prodigy from that great dynasty.... Link The Relatively Charmed Life Of Neil Bush Despite Silverado and Voodoo, Fortune Still Smiles on the President's Brother By Peter Carlson Washington Post Staff Writer Ah, it's nice to be Neil Bush. When you're Neil Bush, rich people from all over the world are eager to invest money in your businesses, even though your businesses have a history of crashing and burning in spectacular fashion. When you're Neil Bush, you'll be sitting in a hotel room in Thailand or Hong Kong, minding your own business, when suddenly there's a knock at the door. You answer it and a comely woman strolls in and has sex with you. Life sure is fun when you're Neil Bush, son of one president, brother of another. Just how much fun was revealed in a deposition taken last March, during Bush's very nasty divorce battle. Asked by his wife's attorney whether he'd had any extramarital affairs, Bush told the story of his Asian hotel room escapades. "Mr. Bush," said the attorney, Marshall Davis Brown, "you have to admit that it's a pretty remarkable thing for a man just to go to a hotel room door and open it and have a woman standing there and have sex with her." "It was very unusual," Bush replied. Actually, it wasn't that unusual. It happened at least three or four times during Bush's business trips to Asia, he said: "I don't remember the exact number." "Were they prostitutes?" asked Brown. "I don't -- I don't know," Neil replied. "Did you pay them?" "No." Not surprisingly, the revelation made headlines around the world. Equally unsurprisingly, the sex story overshadowed the curious financial revelations that came out in the same deposition. In 2002, for instance, Bush signed a consulting contract with Grace Semiconductor -- a Shanghai-based company managed in part by the son of former Chinese president Jiang Zemin. Bush's contractual duties consist solely of attending board meetings and discussing "business strategies." For this, he is to be paid $2 million in company stock over five years, plus $10,000 for every board meeting he attends. "Now, you have absolutely no educational background in semiconductors, do you Mr. Bush?" Brown asked. "That's correct," Bush responded. Meanwhile, back home in Texas, Bush serves as co-chairman of a company called Crest Investment. Crest, he revealed in the deposition, pays him $60,000 a year to provide "miscellaneous consulting services." "Such as?" Brown asked. "Such as answering phone calls when Jamal Daniel, the other co-chairman, called and asked for advice," Bush replied. Ah, it's nice to be Neil Bush, who seems to be living the lifestyle immortalized in those famous Dire Straits lyrics: "Money for nothin' and chicks for free."
  12. GOP Elite? And who pray tell would that be... Dumb and Dumber?
  13. Slapshot with Paul Newman. Old 70s film. Saw it once before on video at a friend's house in high school but didn't really appreciate what it had to offer. I don't even know how to describe this film. It isn't heavy, but it's pretty fucking good in subtle ways (though the behavior in the film is anything but subtle). Down and out hockey team in an economically depressed area resorts to juvenile antics and violence on the ice to draw the crowd. Aging coach Paul Newman manipulates this, as his own future hangs in the balance. Definite thumbs up. The film is an adaptation of a book written by a woman who's husband was a hockey player. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LJkHm2WtSsk
  14. Unemployment benefits were at 99 months for awhile with federal extensions, just google '99ers.' Though those were cut and (I believe) it's back at 6 months. Haha, I'm like Steve -- when in LOS for a few weeks I may logon once or twice to contact people (hey Flash, I want to go to the redshirt camp, serious... ), otherwise too busy running around. Logon much more frequently here. By biggest beef with the Republicans is also the social conservatives and their growing influence. Dubya courting the religious right might have got him elected, but it also created a monster. Last thing I want is to see the government hijacked by evangelicals. That said, I don't think HH is completely off in his criticism. As soon as I saw the first budget passed under Obama, in which he let congress do what they want and it was an expansive web of pork and garbage --> I knew there was something amiss. I'm glad Rahm is gone, the guy was a twit. I like Obama, but he's surrounded himself with people that seem to be strong on theory and weak on application. Bush's invasion of countries started a horrible vacuum in the economy, but he's done little to make it better. I honestly think he's in over his head. Kamui - a lot of people are stating that the wild swings in the market are literally being caused by greedy traders, and it's just that simple. People thought France was going to be downgraded and they saw profit by taking certain actions. Some people actually want that to happen as they'll make money off of it. The other thing is, I never seen cynicism so thick when it comes to the future. Maybe the wall street bailout was necessary, but now people are just saying 'fuck it, I've worked all my life and my home just lost half of its value, while these greedy cocksuckers continue on unimpeded, I'm going to get what I can.'
  15. Yep. You'll be missed a lot Herr Charles. Give KS a little time, seems like he's put in a lot of work trying to make the board better. It's a new app, these things take a little time and trial/error to tweak. I hope there's a way found to list the 'hot topics' from every page. And haven't the politics discussions always been simplistic? Business as usual. I thought you were a hardened cynic who didn't let that stuff irk you. Anyway, to reiterate, you would be missed. Notice the use of 'would,' cause I'm assuming you just need to have a drink and chill, get laid, read some Dosteovsky or something. And then come back with the subtle jabs we all love. So I didn't say 'will,' because that's definitive, I say 'would' as in hypothetical. Cheers.
  16. There's a lot of reasons to make drugs legal. There's also no doubt that the drug trade in Los Angeles in the 80s was used to buy arms from Iran and funnel them to the Contras. But honestly, what I see as one of the primary catalysts for crime - here - is a hopelessness in poorer parts of town and a void where prior people could actually go out and earn a decent blue-collar living. Yeah, there's unprecedented mobility for some parts of the black middle-class, but a lot of people have been left out in the cold and don't give a shit about much. I don't know. It's heartbreaking.
  17. Meet the new boss. Just the same as the old boss.
  18. Supported some sort of military strike/retaliation on Afghanistan. But not occupation. We know history, a very recent history, yet still mimic the Soviets stupidity in the recent past (Ironically Osama Bin Laden was trained by the US in the insurgency against the Soviets). How fucking stupid can we be. Where does it go long term? 9/11 gave some real dipshits an opportunity to craft and influence foreign policy. A la Dick Cheney. Their constant mantra was 'you can't appease the terrorists' and they portrayed anyone who disagreed with them as a modern day Neville Chamberlain. You gotta love a war on an abstract idea. Maybe next we can declare war on fear and use it to justify even more bullshit. Fuck it, just invade everybody. I like to think that 50 years from now historians will look at US foreign policy the past decade with one conclusion --> dumb.
  19. Yo HH. Like I said prior I'm not going to vote in the 2012 election. Lame I know - my own personal protest. (I don't enough about Ron Paul, have to investigate). But -- that said, I'm sincere when I say the conservatives are fucking up an opportunity. And I'm confident in that (currently). So -- here's my proposal. Lets make a bet. I'm betting that Obama is going to win a second term (cause the current republican line-up is mediocre at best). I don't even support Obama, but he's going to win. Here's the bet -- if Obama wins, you donate $50 to this board. If ANY republican wins -- I donate $50. I'm dead serious. Is it a bet???
  20. Flash, have you been back to Southern Cal and not told anyone?? "LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- He's suspected of robbing banks from San Diego to Goleta. The elderly man known as the "Geezer Bandit" is getting a lot of attention. He even has fans on a Facebook page." Link
  21. Time out for a minute or two while I stop convulsing with laughter. .........Okay' date=' while you are certainly entitled to your opinion, you need to stop "listening" to what Obama says and analyze what he actually does/promotes. You need to consider his entire history. If you think that tigers will change their stripes...that's another story and there's no hope for you. 55555 Of course the GOP would do things differently...particularly with economic and social issues on the home front. With respect to foreign policy, I'm quite certain the GOP would rather have the world "afraid" of the U.S. than have it the laughing stock of the planet...and that is just what Obama (our Nobel Peace Prize winner) has created. Everybody loves a kinder, more gentle U.S.A. They will continue to do so until one day they wake up and find their tits in a wringer and send out an SOS. HH[/quote'] I find Obama a disappointment and won't vote at all in the next election, but not for the reasons you cite Hugh. The maintaining of troops in Afghanistan (which I don't support), the maintaining of Gitmo (don't support), Libya (ehhh), killing Bin Laden (do support, but think it's much ado about nada beyond symbolism) -- all of these things don't jive with the 'wimp' portrait you draw. Sometimes wimp ain't bad. And you want to talk about laughingstock of the world, we really don't need to walk back a few years eh? I'd still take Obama over Bush -- but if the right had a decent guy/girl... hey. Republicans are fucking up a lot though. They're putting nobody out there who will draw anyone but their hardcore folks. Hell, those people would vote for a piece of dog poop if it was the conservative candidate. Getting their support means nothing. But the other folks, they're just saying: WTF. Still a ways to go, but it's not looking good for 2012 right now - re: conservatives. Not the way it could.
  22. The Alien Girl. Got 8% on Rotten Tomatoes. Not a good sign. Yet I found it to be worth watching, moreso than most of the higher aggregate scored films. Dark film about brutality and exploitation, with occasional 'human' touches, but not many. Takes place in 90's Russia/Ukraine/Czech Republic and doesn't portray the conversion to capitalism in any romantic sense. The film centers around 'The Alien Girl' an orphan with ties to the mafia who is partial cold and ruthless, partial victim of circumstance, and partial... interesting. Not a 'feel good' film, but -- there's something there.
  23. Bill Maher is at least interesting, but around town he has the rep of being a self-abosrbed asshole off set. Several people have quit his program and say he's an egomaniacal dickhead off camera. Typical hollywood. Robaus: people sling the racist card too casually when it comes to Obama. Yeah, there are definitely racists who oppose him, but you can't discount every criticism that you deem as bullshit to also be racist. If Clarence Thomas was in the white house you best believe the left would be pursuing agendas like the 'birther' one. Not everyone who doesn't like Obama is a racist. And not everyone who supports him isn't. Compredez sir? Life is a little more nuanced than that.
  24. Ping HH. This is minor news for most people -- but have you read about the FBI seizing the domain names for the large online poker sites and shutting down access in the US? Yep, big priority for the FBI. Lets shut down those poker games. It was pushed under legislation that came to pass under the Bush administration but sat dormant (UIGEA or something like that). And no, I'm no blaming Bush. This one is O and his attorney general. They lost me on this one. On a bright note, this won't any poker playing expats in LOS, it's just US residents. baaaaah.
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