Your Daily Mindjob
This is my personal blog where I'll offer up some political straight talk as well as thoughts on technology and pop culture. That should give me plenty to talk about. The world can give you one heck of a mindjob. Think like me and get your daily dose.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Michael Steele, The New Top Guy...Ha!

Michael Steele just took the top spot in the Republican Party by sliding into the RNC Chairman spot. Here are my thoughts on Michael Steele. Keep in mind my only insight into the mind of Michael Steele is from his ramblings in his appearances on Real Time with Bill Maher.

He's an asshole. Not only is he an asshole, but he's a party line asshole. If this is representative of how the Republican Party wants to be in 2012, then they didn't learn a damn thing from the recent election. The last thing the Republican Party needs to be is the same old obstinate party line group of people. His skin may be black, but he wears the same face as those Republicans that made us vomit in the 2008 campaign season.

You guys on the Right still didn't get the message.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Hotel Funk

You know what I'm talking about. Well, perhaps maybe you don't. Let me elaborate.

For those of us who travel across this country with any sort of frequency, hotel life is a very familiar experience. Room quality can vary as can the going rate for that room. The housekeeping staff rarely speaks any English. The remote control is probably the dirtiest thing in the room. The internet access can be hit or miss. Quite often, the shower heads are low-flow. The coffee pots don't always work either. You never really know what to expect.

One thing remains fairly consistent however. I'm talking about the cheap hotel soap. Unless you are accustomed to staying at an up scale ritzy hotel, you are familiar with this particular product.

Hotel branded lotion is usually nice. The shampoo can be good at times. The soap, on the other hand, is horrid. I call the smell the "hotel funk." It doesn't quite smell like body odor, but it's damn close. If you did not pack your own soap, this stuff is what you're left with. As a soap, it probably does affect the adherence of dirt particles and other nasties, so you can probably wash yourself clean with a certain level of confidence. The smell of the soap stays with you.

Take flight attendents for example. As they walk by you in the aisle on the plane, take a quick breath in and tell me if you smell "hotel funk." I have. Other passengers that have been forced to use hotel soap smell like it too. I have even smelled it walking through an airport terminal. On this most recent trip, even the hotel towels still reeked of "hotel funk." It apparently does not wash out when they do laundry. Maybe this particular hotel did not use detergent. Isn't that troubling? With the TSA liquid guidelines in place, I suspect more people are being forced to use cheap hotel soap instead of their own quality bar.

Like the bad B.O. in a Seinfeld episode, "hotel funk" is an entity.

Shreveport Regional Airport & Social Programming

I recently went on a trip. I flew out of SHV, the Shreveport Regional Airport in Shreveport, Louisiana. When I returned, my flight landed just before noon. As I rode the escalator down to the baggage claim area, I heard something over the loudspeakers.

"Please stand for the National Anthem."

Two security guards walking toward me stopped. I continued to walk by them and set my bag down on a bench. A huge American flag was hanging from the ceiling above where the guards were standing. The anthem started playing.

Employees behind the baggage claim kept working. It looked like airline employees at the check-in counters continued to work. The few passengers lingering near the escalator stopped dead in their tracks while the song played. One girl placed her hand over her chest. The song ended and everyone who stopped went back to what they were doing.

SHV does this every single day at noon. If I'm not mistaken, I think they start off the day with the same ritual. That's exactly what this was. Playing the National Anthem every day at noon is nothing more than ritualistic. Not only that, but it is a form of social programming whereby nationalism, not patriotism, is crammed down our throats.

This is the only airport I know of that practices this ritual. I find it very troubling in light of all of the strong nationalism present in the local community, especially among Conservatives who think they are "true" Americans. This is nothing more than another example of nationalistic indoctrination. We should be terrified of this ritualistic practice. I mean, at an airport at noon every single day?

Worried About Steve Jobs & Apple

Ever since Steve Jobs was diagnosed with some form of benign pancreatic cancer, questions and concerns about his health have lingered. I would like to get my hands on the pathology report. After recent appearances where he apparently looked thinner and less healthy, more speculation started flying around. Official releases from those at Apple continued to insist Steve was fine. Now Steve has announced he will go on medical leave until some time in June.

Where does this leave Apple? The stock has already taken a hit over this recent news. A similar situation occurred when an "iReporter" falsely posted a news story that Jobs had been taken off in an ambulance. What Apple is to the Macworld Expo is what Steve Jobs is to Apple in many respects. One may not succeed without the other. I can't help but express that somewhat reserved sense of irony (for those Apple fans out there aware of Apple abandoning future Macworld Expos). Combined with the the recent lackluster Macworld Keynote, this story is making many of us very worried.

Should he pass away, whoever takes over needs to share the vision Steve Jobs had. That should be a no brainer, but anyone who knows the history of Apple is aware of how various CEO's have taken the company in the wrong direction. We can't help but feel very worried about our beloved Apple. For those newcomers and perhaps for many news anchors, Steve Jobs is just the guy that brought us the iPod and the iPhone. For the rest of us who have been Mac users for ages, Steve has always been a visionary of great significance in the world of tech.

Steve, we wish you well and hope for the best.

I found this article at MSNBC to be an interesting read that helped me to understand the underlying pathology in question. Most of us are in the dark because Jobs is good at keeping secrets.