Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 399

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I did not see the rollover, but my little corner of the world reached reached 400,000 views late Sunday night/early Monday morning … and the next OITS is #400! Thanks to all!

Before I start posting about the recent cruise, my notes suggest I still have a three tidbit posts left about Eastern Europe – so there will be a post this Saturday.

I’ve been a St. Louis Blues (hockey) fan since their first season (1967-68). Needless to say, I’m thrilled that they made the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since the 1969-1970 season. Go Blues!

Last week I mentioned the latest seasonal ice cream flavor from Graeter’s: Malted Pretzel Ball. Here’s the scoop. (Response) It is an ice cream with malted milk balls within it. My one scoop had about 5 balls. Each ball was crunchy with a hint of pretzel. The ice cream itself was very creamy – typically Graeter’s – but the flavor was very basic and not malty. It was good and I’m glad I tried it – but on my next trip to Graeter’s, I will be having something else.

Although John Dickerson and Norah O’Donnell have moved on to different assignments within the network and a new morning team is in place, I still prefer CBS This Morning as my morning news show. I enjoyed the tributes the show did for each of them. I’ve linked the video to each name: John and Norah.

For the record, I did not watch the Game of Thrones finale. Then again, I haven’t the first or any episode.

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For a person who claims to be the most transparent administration in US history and that he has nothing to hide, so Mr. President – Why do you prevent the release of information and block people from testifying?

Given the craziness in current politics, I yield to a great American orator who provides a simple, perfect explanation. Click here for a short explanation if and only if you are curious.

To lead you into this week’s satirical headlines, The Onion explains the top reasons to consider a road-trip for your next family vacation.

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Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)

Biologists capture rare photo of two mutually beneficial species exchanging business cards
Breaking News: You still have to go to work in Heaven
Random uncle’s wife crying a bunch throughout Grandma’s funeral
Horrified authorities discover one-day-old funnel cake abandoned in dumpster
Bugs Bunny explains how LeBron helped him get sober for role in Space Jam sequel
Excited archeologists hit mass grave jackpot

(My Combo) Excited Bugs Bunny explains how Heaven works to crying LeBron abandoned in dumpster

Interesting Reads

Social media and political discourse
Bridging the religious-secular divide
Therapeutics and Cannabis
Same-sex marriage across the world
Palestinian cuisine
Murals and the Sudanese revolution
(Photos) World Beard and Moustache Championships

To send you into the weekend, here’s the great Bonnie Raitt. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

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Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 398

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Greetings. Last week was one of those rare weeks without an OITS. I was behind on the writing and replying to comments on the previous post – so I decided to pass.

Hey hey hey – 2 to go to #400! Visit #400,000 may happen during the upcoming week – but maybe not.

FYI: I’m aiming for the next concert to be on Saturday, June 8th.

My Quickstep routine is in the books. Good news: We didn’t crash and burn. (FYI: Quickstep is not an easy dance.) We successful got through it and my partner was thrilled! For me, we did well – but I’m a tough critic on myself, so I only get a C. My partner and I have the same instructor, who choreographed a routine around this scene from An American in Paris – but we danced to this Bobby Darin version of I Got Rhythm that is definitely aerobic.

We recently wrapped up another season of handbells and ushering.

  • The last handbell piece was Shalom Chaverim. An interesting piece that you can watch a large choir in Japan play. Click here
  • The last play was Tiny House, a new play as a joint effort between the Cincinnati and Cleveland theaters. A fun play – and the building of the tiny house was interesting to witness. Thumbs up if it ever comes to your area. Here are two reviews (one from each city): Cincinnati and Cleveland
  • Of the personalities who died this week, I’m connected with two. Doris Day was born and raised in Cincinnati. Comedian Tim Conway and I graduated from the same university (Bowling Green).

If you like rich and creamy, Graeter’s (of Cincinnati) is a fabulous ice cream (past post). They recently introduced a new summer flavor – Malted Pretzel Ball – so, I’ll be trying very soon.

Some may recall that John Roebling built Cincinnati’s suspension bridge before the more famous Brooklyn Bridge. Click here for a short (less than 2 minute) video of the bridge done by a local TV station.

As a viewer of the CBS Evening News, I already miss anchor Jeff Glor – but look forward to Norah O’Donnell anchoring later this year.

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The Democratic field of presidential candidates continues to grow. Now at 24, let’s go for 30! On the other hand, I wonder about the end game of the majority of the field.

This week the Alabama state government passed the most restrictive abortion bill in the country. Although their intent is to challenge Roe v Wade in the Supreme Court, I simply say patriotism, morality, and civic duty cannot be legislated.

I have long been a critic of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). Her recent comment about AG Barr lying made me wince. On the other hand, I acknowledge the difficult task she has with her current caucus, and she has been done well during this difficult time.

To describe the current situation in Washington, while some proclaim Constitutional crisis – but I prefer institutional crisis.

Here’s an example of the goofy far right of Republicans. My state senator wants to ban insurance coverage of abortions except for re-implanting an ectopic pregnancy into the uterus. Interestingly, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists says the procedure doesn’t exist. The senator disagrees.

According to President Trump, Hungarian authoritarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is doing “a tremendous job” and “respect all over Europe”. Sorry to say, that comment is not a surprise and follows praise of other authoritarian leaders from Russia, North Korea, and Turkey.

I grew up in the portion of Ohio that mined coal. Being along the Ohio River, multiple coal-burning power are still located nearby. Because we know President Trump vowed to revive the coal industry, here’s an interesting article about the source of energy for Ohioans.

To lead you into the weekly dose of satire, The Onion provides tips for going through a divorce.

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Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)

Man starting to think only reason people hanging out with him because they are on same jury
Dress that would have forever altered course of woman’s life patted, placed back on rack
Dissatisfied Taco Bell customer goes rogue
Unsettling study finds two cousins technically fair game
Charity pairs naughty hags with children who taste good in stew
New blender changes guy’s life

Interesting Reads

How much of the Internet is fake
Ancient humans
Nazi looted painting
A camel festival in Mongolia
Enduring McCarthyism
(Graphic) Countries with the worst bad loan ratio
(Photos) Food photography
(Photos) Bikers in Hanoi

To send you into the weekend and as a tribute to Cincinnati treasure Doris Day, it’s time for a Sentimental Journey. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.(NOTE; The video will NOT play embedded here. After you click the video below, then click Watch this video on YouTube.)

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 225

On Politics
The Republican response to this week’s news about the capture of the alleged mastermind of the Benghazi attack is a perfect example of the question I asked several week’s ago: If Republicans asked President Obama to fart, and he did, would they complain?

Glenn Beck has said his share of stupid things, but I this may be his best: He warned the American people that President Obama is about to snap, thus react by sending conservatives to internment camps … .and sorry to say, yes, people actually listen to this man.

In the NRA Lobby

In the NRA Lobby

Seeing this inscribed at the National Rifle Association (NRA) headquarters is not surprising. Because the Second Amendment is not lengthy, it is interesting to discover that they left off the beginning: A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state,

Earlier this week the US Supreme Court set the stage for overturning Ohio’s Truth in Campaign Ads law – something that President Obama agrees with doing. What a shame on both counts!

I appreciated this quote by a local resident in his published editorial: The moneyed interests (from outside the state) have no interest in Ohio as a state, or the people, thus just want that voting seat to further their agenda, even if it is harmful to the people of Ohio. (John Apanites, Cincinnati Enquirer, June 15, 2014)

I like this statement from conservative columnist George Will. Here is a question for Republican presidential aspirants: Given the absence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, and given that we now know how little we know about “nation-building” and about the promotion of democracy in nations that need to be “built,” and given that Saddam Hussein’s horrific tyranny at least controlled Iraq’s sectarian furies, and given that Iraq under him was Iran’s adversary, and given that 10-year wars make Americans indiscriminately averse to military undertakings — given all this, if you could rewind history to March 2003, would you favor invading Iraq?

To House Republicans. You continually point the finger at the Senate for not acting on all the legislation you sent them. A word of caution – Purposely sending legislation that won’t get acted upon is at least just as pathetic – and maybe more so.

This image is appropriate in many ways.

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To lead you into The Onion’s headlines of the week, this one is fitting: Resigning House Leader Reflects on All the Accomplishments He Thwarted

On This Week’s Headlines from The Onion
New PS4 feature allows user to close eye and imagine really fun game
Study: More men opting to be in room when wife conceives baby
Employee executes daring 3:30 pm escape from the office
Aunt enters ninth year of raving about Wicked
More corporations using tag-and-release programs to study American consumers

Bonus Onions Regarding the World Cup
Teams to Watch
Players to Watch

Interesting Reads
Columnist David Ignatius look at the Middle East through a historical lens 
10 to-knows-about Brazil while watching the World Cup
An immigration infographic
SR-71: The Blackbird spy plane
The mystery of hiccups
The Bird-Poop Spider

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On Potpourri
The recent 20th anniversary of OJ and the white Ford Bronco brought forth many “where are they now” reports. But the most compelling question NBC answers: What happened to the white Ford Bronco? 

Two tidbits about next week: 1) The next Satire Bits will be the 100th in the series, and 2) the next act of Life: The Musical may be next week (thus announced Monday).

My less-than-a-year old phone suddenly died, thus I cringe of losing all the dance videos of steps.

My beloved Graeter’s ice cream will be advertising on Food Network and the Cooking Channel.

I’m getting closer to the return of Saturday Morning Cartoons – but not yet.

Your weekend celebrations

  • (Fri) Flip-Flop Day, Vanilla Milkshake Day, Midsummer (in Finland & Sweden), American Eagle Day, Take Your Dog to Work Day. Productivity Day, Refugee Day, Ugliest Dog Day, Flitch of Bacon Day
  • (Sat) Peaches & Cream Day, Hollerin’ Contest Day (contest at Spivey’s Corner, North Carolina), Go Skateboarding Day, Daylight Appreciation Day, Polar Bear Swim Day, Handshake Day, Global Orgasm Day for World Peace (Southern Hemisphere), Cuckoo Warning Day, Pet Fire Safety Day
  • (Sun) Chocolate Eclair Day, Smurfs Day, Stupid Guy Thing Day

To send you into the weekend, here’s a hit from 1970 – and one with a distinct bass line. Enjoy Green-Eyed Lady by Sugarloaf. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Flashbacks: On Food and Recipes

Whether eating in a restaurant, a special dinner at home, getting that special treat, or time in the kitchen, we enjoy many aspects of a meal. Here are some selections for my archival vault that may capture your interest. Enjoy, visit as many as you wish, and hopefully you will comment on the post you visited. Are you going to make any of these?