Archive for June, 2010

World Cup Special Offer from VFTB: Vuvuzela music lessons – Kids half price!

Life is pretty stressful at times. When I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed, I like to find a comfortable couch, close my eyes and listen to a relaxing sound. And no sounds are more soothing to me than the rhythmic sound of ocean waves crashing into the shore or the gentle gurgling of a babbling brook or the soothing hum of 35,000 rabid South African soccer fanatics at the FIFA World Cup, blowing their lungs out with their plastic 4 dollar and 95 cent vuvuzelas. If you still haven’t heard of a vuvuzela (pronounced “Voo-Voo-ZAY-Lah), it can mean only one thing: You’re an American.

Surely by now you must have seen and heard a vuvuzela. Click here to listen to its soothing sound. Now, wasn’t that relaxing? Now just imagine that soothing humming sound TIMES 35 THOUSAND …. for an hour and a half….. non-stop…. without commercial interruption. Originally used to summon distant African tribal villagers to attend community gatherings, the vuvuzela has become synonymous with the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, with its distinctive nonstop, deafening, monotone buzzing sound. The vuvuzela may come in 275 different colors, but they all come in just one note: B flat.

Continue reading “World Cup Special Offer from VFTB: Vuvuzela music lessons – Kids half price!” »

  • Mr. Jones: The British Virgin Islands will be trying to host the World Cup in the…
    Babette Morehead
  • Published On Jun. 26, 2010 by TEJ
  • My fleeting friendship with an Internet Scammer (Part 2 of a 2-part post)

    Internet Scammer - mainWelcome back to the thrilling conclusion of my true, unedited story about my fleeting friendship with an Internet Scammer named Mr. Chris. If you missed the last week’s Part I, you can get caught up here.   If you were with us last week, you know that it all started when I received the following unusual email in my SPAM mail folder.

    From: kelvin chris

    To: (this field was left blank)

    Subject: Order Urgent

    Hello.  Am Mr. Kelvin Chris and will like to place an order regarding some bleachers from your company to Latvia. What is their price ranges, also your terms of payment as well. hope you answer to my request ASAP. Thank you very much and waiting for your prompt responds. God Bless You.

    Best Regards
    Mr. Chris


    I would now like to let you in on a little secret – come in close…. closer… Psst: I don’t actually sell bleachers. It’s a humor blog. View from the Bleachers is a metaphor.

    But Mr. Chris wanted to engage me in a bit of Internet commerce with terms most favorable to him. So I could not help but have a little fun by playing along. I never thought he would actually respond back to me after my ridiculously satirical reply. But he did. Oh yes.

    Continue reading “My fleeting friendship with an Internet Scammer (Part 2 of a 2-part post)” »

    • Mr. Chris is back and is emailing my work! It was quite hilarious getting almost the exact same first email…
  • Published On Jun. 18, 2010 by TEJ
  • My fleeting friendship with an Internet Scammer (Part 1 of a 2-part post)

    Internet Scammer - mainRecently, I made a new friend across Cyberspace: a very nice man named Mr. Chris. Well, at least I thought he was a friend. For a week, it looked like we were going to become best buddies. But sadly this story of fleeting friendship has a heart-breaking ending.

    You see, Mr. Chris is a documented Internet Scammer – listed on web sites for trying to con people out of their money by offering to overpay with a bad check or stolen credit card, and asking the victim to send back a check in return for the overpayment. Your classic Internet scam.

    What made me suspicious, you might ask? Well, I think it was his first email which I stumbled onto in my SPAM mail folder which lacked any name in the “to” field. His email asked about pricing for BLEACHERS.  

    Continue reading “My fleeting friendship with an Internet Scammer (Part 1 of a 2-part post)” »

  • Published On Jun. 12, 2010 by TEJ
  • BP has a plan to solve the gulf oil problem, and another plan, and another plan…

    April 22, 2010 was Earth Day. But it was not a very good day for the earth – or for that matter, for BP. That’s the day the an explosion toppled over BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico and the blowout preventer failed, causing the earth to begin leaking thousands of gallons of oil from 5000 feet below the surface of the Gulf. In a bit of irony, the original Earth Day was April 22, 1970, thirty years ago to the day of this year’s spill, begun in large measure in response to another oil spill caused from a blowout of a deep sea drill off the coast of Santa Barbara, California.

    Last week, the Gulf oil spill disaster surpassed the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill as the worst environmental disaster in American history. BP (the initials, which formerly stood for British Petroleum, have been changed to stand for “Best Polluter”) has taken full and complete responsibility for the oil spill. And by “full and complete responsibility”, BP CEO Tony Hayward went on to clarify that the Deepwater oil rig was owned and operated by Transocean, which, he went on to say was responsible for the safety on the oil rig. According to The London Telegraph, Hayward further clarified BP’s full and complete responsibility by saying, “This was not our accident. This was not our drilling rig. This was not our equipment. It was not our people, our systems or our processes. This was Transocean’s rig. Their systems. Their people. Their equipment.”

    Continue reading “BP has a plan to solve the gulf oil problem, and another plan, and another plan…” »

    • Great Tim Your blogs are always pointed and I giggle at them. This one is very creative and as…
      Janice Strong
  • Published On Jun. 05, 2010 by TEJ
  • I Went to the Dentist Today

    A guest post by Chris Scott from

    I went to the dentist today and had a significant thought. There I was sitting in a chair betwixt two professionals (the dentist and his assistant) working on my teeth. Yes, two high-paid professionals who had probably both gone through several years of schooling were taking several hours out of their day to attend to my hygienic needs. That’s two professionals. Several years of schooling. My hygiene. Got that? All thanks to our wonderful semi-capitalist economic system (← I had to get that jab in there).

    And on top of that, racial diversity had a role in it: the dentist was Asian, the nurse was a black woman and the patient was white. We each represented a portion of post-racial Western society. We were like a symbol of freedom, hope, interracial togetherness – or something like that. I wanted to say something but with all the cotton balls in my mouth, all I could say in response to anything was “ah huh.”

    Aside from not being able to communicate properly, a very pressing issue was on my mind. Where does one rest his eyes when two hunched-over individuals are operating in his facial area?

    Do I focus on the half-blinding light overhead? Do I stare deep into Choi’s (the dentist’s) pitch-black almond eyes? Do I look at my teeth through the reflection off Choi’s glasses (he’s Chinese and educated so he has glasses of course). Perhaps I should stare to the left, at the face mask of the black nurse which was bobbing up and down on account of the fact that she was chewing gum?

    At any rate the internal conflict was making me look nervous. My eyes were going all over the place. My fingers were twitching. I could not settle on an awkward-less place to rest my eyes. Because my brain was so busy trying to solve the eye problem, I had difficulty obeying the dentist’s simple commands: “open wider” and “close more.”

    Then I had an epiphany.

    Why not close my eyes? The revelation was brought about by a splash of cold water to the face by the water drill which forced me to close my eyes. Afterwards, I kept them close.

    “You must be tired,” Choi said about a minute after I closed my eyes.

    “ah huh,” I responded.

    After all, what else can anyone say but “ah huh” at the dentist?

    When the dentist did something painful I usually clenched my fists or wiggled my toes vigorously (don’t worry, they couldn’t see this child-like reaction because I was wearing shoes). But if the dentist saw, out of the corner of his eye, me clench my fists on the armrests he would ask if I was okay. In which case, mouth still full of objects, I would respond with a simple yet pointed “ah huh.” You see, when the mouth is full of objects the patient has severe tongue movement restriction. They teach dentists that in dentist school but I believe they present it as something like a job perk.

    But even if I were physically capable of enunciating something beyond the length of one syllable, what could I possibly say?

    “Yes Dr. Choi, that hurts.”

    Would Choi then put down his tools and call it a day? Somehow I think not. After the roller coaster takes off there’s nothing much “stop the ride Dad!” can do. I learned that valuable lesson early on in life at the seemingly innocuous Runaway Mine Train ride at Six Flags.

    I used to ask for the laughing gas, primarily because it feels like breathing in heaven. “Sweet air,” some people call it. I just don’t see why God couldn’t have mixed a little bit of that stuff into the atmosphere – then maybe people wouldn’t be so uptight all the time.

    inversion tableI didn’t get the nitrous-oxide this time. I got something much better. Because of the fact that all Asian people are short, my head and upper-torso were lowered far lower than usual to accommodate Choi’s shortness. It was almost like being on my bud Steve’s inversion table at about a 145 degree angle. The effect was a constant rush of blood to the head which kept me in a very oxygen-high, dazed state. By the way, getting on the inversion table is my favorite thing to do at Steve’s house.

    In my 45-degree-angled chair I was drifting off into a trance. Through many years of boring sermons and school convocations, I have gained the unique ability to bring about miniature self-induced comas. The rush of oxygen to the head only sped up the process I had initiated. While in this state I thought about all sorts of things. I thought about how I would talk to the receptionist with my entire mouth being numb. I thought about how lunch would taste with all the fluoride and chemicals lingering in my mouth. I thought about bow hunting for coyotes with my brother in the Casperkill woods at night with night vision goggles. Yes, we have actually considered doing that. The only things we still need before we can embark on that adventure are bows and night vision goggles.

    While at the dentist, I’ve also learned how to fake being a masochist. In my head, I scream things like “that feels wonderful” and “bring it on” when Choi does something violent and painful (e.g.: slowly sticking a 10-inch needle deeper and deeper into my gum and not stopping even after 10-Mississippi). Unfortunately, no matter what I do to mask the pain, my tongue always gives me away. My tongue seems to be in the habit of doing a little dance every time a large amount of pain is inflicted via my mouth. I know this because I witness it through the reflection in Choi’s eye glasses. I swear, that little thing has a life of its own.

    Well, that’s pretty much all the funny observations I made while at the dentist today. I wish I had some spectacular way of tying all of this up neatly in a conclusive paragraph but I think I’ll go to bed now..

    … So I guess I’ll see you later.

    • After all that did they let you pick something special from the "treasure chest"?
      Jeanne Whalen
  • Published On Jun. 02, 2010 by TEJ