Archive for August 22nd, 2007

Dubya meets The Dead Zone: My encounter with the pres.

Several years ago in college, I shook hands with then governor of Texas — George W. Bush. He came to my school around the time he was campaigning and had a very blanket speech about vocational jobs of all things. It was cookie cutter. It was dry. And he was surrounded by his “yes” men as you would expect, controlling our questions.

But he still had to do the whole “kissing babies” routine so when he got to me I had my question ready. Back then I was a huge non-supporter of capital punishment. I have mixed feelings about it today, though. But at that time, it was a very passionate topic for me. I don’t really remember the exact question but all W. gave me was a very glazed over face and a fake smile and sputtered, “Well, I am a capital punishment governor,” and then he shook my hand and that was that.

Now I don’t know if you follow the USA Network, but good old 1980s geek turned hottie Anthony Michael Hall  plays a psychic named Johnny Smith on The Dead Zone. The show is based on the old movie with Christopher Walken in the lead role which was an adaptation of the book by Stephen King.

Smith can see the future and the past by touching things — or people and after shaking the hand of a to-be president named Greg Stillson, Smith sees the end of the world, literally.  Now I know I’m reaching well around to make a point and I’m sure not saying I’m psychic but I have to admit that I had such a Johnny Smith moment when I shook Bush’s hand. It’s hard to explain. I just got a bad vibe and a chill …

Whether or not you are a democrat, or republican, there is no denying the severe left turn the War on Terror has been steering down for quite some time. I claim no side. I’ve always voted for who I thought was the best person for the job — no matter the affiliation. But what are we doing here? And what happens, and it will happen, when the torch passes on to the new president? Campaign runs are a funny thing. You hear every day all kinds of promises from the candidates. The media does it’s take, covers the story, opens up the forum for discussion. Some instances like CNN take it a little further with some of their biased coverage. But overall we have the ultimate say about who deserves the job.

However I worry that the situation in Iraq will be like putting together a jigsaw puzzle without having the box with the picture on it to reference how it is all supposed to fit. Ultimately, whoever gets into office, where the hell do they start?!

And why didn’t I write to Washington when I had my Johnny moment? 🙂

A lunch break turns ugly…

It was a little around 1 p.m. and *Elizabeth decided to take a jaunt down to the local craft shop. The day was a hot one and the sun beat down on the pavement — not a cloud in the sky. Being that me and a few other coworkers also decided to take a trip to the shop as well, not knowing prior that Elizabeth had the same plans, I remember the parking lot being quiet. There were several cars and people scattered in and out of the shopping strip. A normal day. When we entered the store, we bumped into Elizabeth. All of us laughed that we chose the same day to have similar plans for lunch without planning it. We non-verbally agreed the office can be a little stuffy at times — just can’t sit at your desk all day on a nice afternoon.By the time my coworkers and I left, we noticed an ambulance and two police cars. First instinct of course as fellow journalists was to see what was up. Before we even got close to the commotion a paramedic called out my name. Elizabeth was in the ambulance, very shaken, out of breath — looking terrified. We hadn’t left together and when Elizabeth head out to her car alone, she was mugged. We felt horrible that we didn’t walk out together but how do you know such things when you are so off guard — not expecting a robbery in the middle of the day?The guy apparently reached out from a car and grabbed her bag. She fell to the ground.“He took everything,” she said between breaths, her hand grasping her chest.

Elizabeth told us she wasn’t returning to work that day of course and to let the office know what happened. She isn’t a woman to mess with — her husband isn’t exactly a slip of a man.  All we could think of on the ride back to the office was how senseless it all was. We looked around prior to getting into the car and just couldn’t believe something like that could happen there in such a “nice” area.  Isn’t that what everyone says when something like this happens? But you just can’t help saying it just the same.

With today’s technology all Elizabeth need to do is to report all her credit cards stolen and the block on them happens instantly. She couldn’t have had too much cash on hand. Maybe some perfume. Some great dark red lipstick that she always wears. A compact to powder her nose in time for a night out with her husband. How senseless. The mugger probably didn’t get away with much.

What happens to people to make them end up on the wrong side of things?

Elizabeth will return to work. Everyone will ask her how she feels. She will again return home to her family. But what does the mugger have? An inevitable arrest. Time in prison. A record if he doesn’t already have one. What is the point to even taking the risk of such a pointless theft?

Where is the cure for society’s downward spiral?

*Name changed to remain anonymous.