Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Indoctrination starts young... Mormon mommy videos

Maybe a couple of years ago, I was messing around on YouTube watching videos of kids throwing tantrums in cars.  Don't ask me why I was doing that... maybe it was because I was comforting myself that I never became a mom.  Anyway, I came across one video that intrigued me.  A little boy was sitting in the middle seat of a car.  His sister was sitting next to him, properly strapped into a carseat.  Another child could be heard crying.  The boy was in the middle, wearing a seatbelt without a booster.  He was too short for the shoulder belt, so it was cutting across his neck, touching his ear.  This distressed the boy, so he was screaming at the top of his lungs about it.  Mom was apparently filming this spectacle for the masses instead of fixing the situation somehow.

Now, I actually hate seatbelts.  I always have.  I wear them because if I don't, Bill turns into Pat Boone.  Also, because if you don't wear them in Germany, there's a huge fine.  By now, I've gotten used to them, anyway.  I do remember being a small child, though, and sitting in the front seat of my parents' cars (back when it was legal for kids to sit up there).  They'd sometimes make me wear a seatbelt and I was too short.  It was uncomfortable, so the damn thing would cut me across the neck.  I'd usually just put the shoulder part behind my back.  Of course, nowadays, you can't do that.  Most cars don't just have lap belts anymore, either.  So kids need booster seats if they can't sit in a carseat anymore.  Actually, this kid was small enough that he probably could have been in a carseat for larger kids, but he had two little sisters who needed them more than he did and there was no room for another carseat.

A couple of days ago, I came across the carseat tantrum video again.  Not having a lot to do, I started looking at other ones posted by the kids' mother.  She's now up to four small kids.  It wasn't long before I noticed that this family is very Mormon.  The kids are really cute, so mom has posted all sorts of videos.  There's one of the boy and older girl in bathing suits in the bathtub.  Actually, I was glad to see that, since someone actually encouraged the mom to film them nude (pedophiles, people!!!).

There's one video where mom is in a rushing river of some sort.  She takes her oldest daughter (at the time the video was shot, maybe 3 years old) under a log in cold water.  Mom writes that the water is usually about 55 degrees.  The girl doesn't cry, which mom comments on... amazed.  Honestly, if you think your child might cry and scream in cold water, why would you even attempt to swim with them under a log under they're older and can decide for themselves?

In another video, she shows an even younger daughter eating raw onion.  Apparently, the kid really likes it.  There's no accounting for taste, I guess.  It does surprise me a bit, though.  That girl must have interesting taste buds for being so little.

The one video that really caught my attention was one of her three year old girl giving a "church talk" for the first time.  This kid is basically unintelligible, so mom has helpfully provided a transcript in the video description.  She's not actually speaking in church-- looks like maybe it was a dress rehearsal of some sort and they're in a classroom.  But she's saying things mom feeds to her, like "Thomas S. Monson is the prophet" and "When I follow the prophet, I am happy".  She holds up signs as she says these things, surely not really knowing what she's saying, but pleasing her mother, who is also filming her for all to see.  Her brother, the same one who was screeching about wearing a seatbelt incorrectly, is clearly bored and can be heard commenting throughout the video as mom tries to keep him contained while filming her barely verbal daughter giving a "talk" that she clearly doesn't yet comprehend.  And freakily enough, what the child is saying reminds me a little bit of what North Koreans say about their "dear leader".

A North Korean girl sings praises to the "Dear Leader".

I shared the video with some people in the know... and I noticed one person came back and took mom to task for it.  She basically invited him to watch Meet the Mormons, a new documentary now showing in movie theaters near you.  Naturally, it's all about Mormons.  This lady figured her commenter was "confused" and didn't know about how great the Mormons are.  But, as it turned out, he was a former missionary who did time in Peru trying to convert people.  So then she apologized that he was "offended", which is another common assumption many church members have about people who don't like their church.  Frankly, I don't think that's a bad reason to dislike Mormonism.  If enough of the people in the church are so yucky that you'd completely abandon your religious belief system, there must be something wrong with the church.  But no, the commenter claimed that he left because of doctrine.

After watching one more video featuring her youngest child in the womb, two days before he was born, I decided to stop watching.  I was alternately amazed and weirded out by the sight of this woman's gyrating pregnant belly.  In some ways it was pretty cool... in other ways, it was a little too personal.  

3 year olds giving "talks" in church is a little creepy.  I know that many church members think this is the way to bring their kids up right.  Some probably think it's cute.  But having an adult feed you the right things to say in front of a church crowd is not really so much developing a belief system as it is submitting to indoctrination and being rewarded with parental approval.  Maybe a case could be made that it teaches kids how to speak in public... but it seems to me that kids ought to be physically able to speak, have rational thoughts of their own, and make some sense before they are expected to give a "talk" anywhere.  If not for the child's well-being, the comfort and well-being of onlookers should be considered.  It's true that some people find kids adorable and enchanting and think whatever they do is cute.  Other people tolerate kids.  Some people actively dislike them and won't think hearing their "canned testimonies" hand fed by their parents is all that interesting.

I do like kids.  I do think this mom is fortunate to have four adorable and apparently very healthy kids.  She obviously loves them enough to record a lot of their moments on video and put them on public YouTube videos.  I'm not sure she enjoys the negative response some of the videos have received, but I give her credit for not deleting the comments or becoming belligerent.  I do wonder what her motives are, though.  Why put your kids on YouTube for strangers to see?  Why invite criticism?  Are you doing it because you want to be an example to everyone else?  The videos are interesting, but perhaps not in the way mom intended them to be.              

Monday, October 20, 2014

Woman gets stuck in would-be boyfriend's chimney...

Just saw a video about a woman who got stuck in the chimney of a Thousand Oaks, California home. The woman, Genoveva Nunez-Figueroa, had met the homeowner online and they went on a date or two.  I guess things didn't work out from the man's perspective and he started to distance himself.  Apparently, she wasn't ready to let go of the relationship.  She was on his roof once and he called the police.  Then she came back and tried to break into the house via the chimney.  Fortunately for her, a neighbor heard her yelling and texted the neighbor, who then called the cops.  The chimney was dismantled and the woman was removed, taken to the hospital, and placed in police custody.  Now the homeowner has to pay to get his chimney fixed, but at least she didn't die.

Back in 2010, I remember reading about a doctor from Bakersfield, California who who tried to break into her boyfriend's home.  49 year old Dr. Jacqueline Kotarac first used a shovel to try to gain entry to her boyfriend's house.  When that didn't work, she used a ladder, then tried to slide down the chimney a la Santa Claus.  Unfortunately, Dr. Kotarac got stuck as the man she was pursuing slipped out of the house to avoid a confrontation.  Evidently, the boyfriend, William Moodie, then left town.  Her decomposing body was found three days later by a housesitter and her son, when she noticed a bad smell and fluids leaking into the fireplace.

As bad as it is that the doctor died in her pursuit, now the homeowner has to deal with the fact that someone died in his house.  I'm sure that won't make his home as attractive to potential buyers should he ever decide to move.  I read that Dr. Kotarac supposedly was a very compassionate physician.  It wouldn't surprise me if there was a little borderline personality disorder going on with her, but of course, I can't know that for sure.  She died a terrible death that I wouldn't wish on anyone.

Yesterday, I became aware of yet another crazy woman.  Kristina Riddell from Longmont, Colorado who, back in July, left her child alone in the backseat of a car, should have been arraigned in court today.  Two people passing by saw the boy and called the police.  While one of them was on the phone with the cops, the mother of the boy appeared, decked male half of the intervening couple.  She then got in her car, backed over the woman who called the police, crushing her leg, and drove off while the man was holding on to the car.  The man got cuts and bruises but the woman was in a wheelchair and may never walk normally again.

It's been an interesting day.  It's looked like it's going to rain all afternoon, but so far heavy clouds but no rain.

Alexis suggested it and I'll deliver...

The other day, I posted about a woman who tried to sell her big pink dildo to the Stuttgart military community.  Alexis commented that the title of my post reminded her of the song, "Big Yellow Taxi" by Joni Mitchell.  I took it as a challenge to come up with a song called "Big Pink Dildo".  This may take me hours, but what the hell.  I have nothing better to do.

Big Yellow Taxi

by Joni Mitchell

They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
With a pink hotel *, a boutique
And a swinging hot spot

Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
Till it's gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

They took all the trees
Put 'em in a tree museum *
And they charged the people
A dollar and a half just to see 'em

Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
Till it's gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

Hey farmer farmer
Put away that DDT * now
Give me spots on my apples
But leave me the birds and the bees

Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
Till it's gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

Late last night
I heard the screen door slam
And a big yellow taxi
Took away my old man

Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
Till it's gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

Big Pink Dildo

by knotty (with major apologies to Joni Mitchell)

She posted a photo
selling a used sex toy.
It was eight inches long,
made of rubber, and looked like a boy.

Don't it always seem to go
that a dildo causes people to crow!
She posted a photo
tryin' to sell a sex toy! 

She kept all the pubes, 
sticking to the rubber dick.
And she's charging the people 
just five bucks to buy the pink prick!   

Don't it always seem to go 
that a rubber cock makes people loco!
She posted a photo
selling a used sex toy!

Hey uptight housewives
Put away that squeamish 'tude now!
Give me fake cocks on Facebook
and let me have fun being crude!

Don't it always seem to go
that the fun police show up and they know
she posted a photo
tryin' to sell a sex toy!

Late last night, 
a Facebook post got rude.
And a big pink dildo 
brought out a couple of prudes!

Don't it always seem to go
that a fake cock causes tempers to blow
She posted a photo
selling her used pink sex toy!

I said, don't it always seem to go
that some folks hate when we're being gross!
She posted a photo
selling a chewed up dildo!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

I don't like half the folks I love...

This song really sums it up...  Yeah, 'nuff said.

It's ironic that I discovered this song on the way home to Virginia in July when I was going to see my dad for the last time.  Now that the holidays are rapidly approaching, I think this song will become my theme.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Big pink dildo...

Last night, while still bitching about not being one of "the grandchildren", I happened to notice a picture of a big pink dildo on my Facebook page.  Looking more closely, I noticed that it was coming from the Stuttgart Military Yard Sales page.  Someone was apparently selling it for $5.

One of my friends commented that this thing looks like a dick wearing clown shoes...

I will admit that my initial reaction was disgust.  But then I started reading the comments, which were hilarious... and of course I joined in!  The "seller" was offering up this fine sex toy that was used twice and cleaned with baby wipes.

Looking more closely, I noticed that the toy had what looked like bite marks on the end.  It also apparently had pubes.  I asked if it glows in the dark.  Then it occurred to me that my dogs chewed up their Michael Vick chew toy and they could probably have a blast with this thing...

Before too long, though, the fun police showed up.  And they wrote:

"This is an inappropriate posting on a military community site that can be accessed by teenagers. Please remove postings of this nature."

Naturally, those who were commenting and having fun scoffed at the lady who was offended.  She persisted in begging that we preserve the dignity of "our profession"...  (and given that I think she was a wife rather than a service member, I don't think it actually was "her profession", but I digress.)

So the naughty joke listing was taken down.  It was fun while it lasted and it did improve my mood even if I was relieved that the whole thing was a joke.  But then they made a new group for naughty people who like to joke about used sex toys.  Hopefully, it won't get too nasty in there with talk of "dependapotomuses".  But I did contribute this picture...

I bought this two weeks ago at the German drink market... I think it was supposed to come with a condom...

I learned that the German word for condom is Flutscher.  My friend Susi says that the word comes from the German verb "to slip".  Go figure.

Well you're a real humdinger with a fine pedigree...

I posted that as a Facebook status last night.  My friend Andrew commented.  "Of baking little tarts and lots of fine pastry."

I wrote back, "Way to go, Andrew!"  He had figured it out...

Pat Benatar sings "Hit Me With Your Best Shot".

Back in the early 1990s, there was a board game on the market called SongBurst.  My dad bought it for me for Christmas.  I didn't get a chance to play it very often because for best results, it required two groups.  Being rather unpopular, I never had any parties, hence, I never had any groups around who wanted to play.  It might have been a good game for our annual family reunion, but it never occurred to me to bring it.  I think I might even still have the game, though it's definitely in storage in the States if I do.

Anyway, when I first got that game for Christmas, I played it with my sister.  The object of the game was to come up with the right song lyrics.  She got Pat Benatar's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot", but she couldn't remember the opening line of the song.  So she came up with, "Well you're a real humdinger with a fine pedigree..."  It cracked me up and for some reason, I thought about it last night after I finished ranting about not being recognized as one of "the grandchildren".

It turns out Andrew, who is also a music buff, also had a copy of the game.  That had nothing to do with him figuring out what I was up to, though.  The funny thing is, I've "known" Andrew for about ten years, but only online.  I have met his wife in person when we both attended an Epinions meet and greet in Washington, DC back in 2005.  But Andrew and I have not yet met in the flesh.  We have, however, read each other's reviews, bantered on Facebook, and even sung duets together on SingSnap.  It's amazing what one can do online these days.

Me and Andrew making music together.

Amazon has SongBurst for sale, though I think the seller is asking too much for it.  The 50s and 60s edition for sale is a hell of a lot cheaper.

Maybe I should buy a BowLingual instead.

I think it's gonna be a goofy day.

Friday, October 17, 2014

There is nothing like being invited to a holiday event by a group you're supposedly a part of...

This afternoon, I got an email from "the grandchildren".  It was from two cousins and a cousin once removed.  They are in charge of our big Thanksgiving celebration this year.  I imagine it's for a number of reasons.  The ones who used to throw these shindigs are getting older and some are no longer in the best of health.  So the torch has been passed to these cousins.  I notice the main party planners have also started an actual party planning business of their own, so it's so much the better that these particular cousins host this thing...  except they may need a little refresher course in not alienating people by being thoughtless.

Now see, they sent me an invitation from "the grandchildren".  But I am also one of the grandchildren.  In fact, I am one of the original crop of 22 grandchildren.  Granted, it's been four years since my last visit.  That's partly because of our perpetual status of residential flux and partly because the older I get, the less I like certain family members.  In fact, I have some outright animosity toward a few of them.  Yes, I know it's juvenile and stupid and I should just let bygones be bygones, but a lot of my issues and pain stem from my family of origin.  And the older I get, the more I realize that, and the more I see some of them as insincere jerks.  I also understand that not all of them like me either, though because they are mostly Christians, they feel the need to include me... even during the year we memorialize my father.

So when I got that email from "the grandchildren", it kind of pissed me off.  I was tempted to shoot back a snarky response, but thought better of it.  I'm not really looking for drama.  On the other hand, if this is the way things are starting off, maybe it would be better for Bill and me to have dinner at a restaurant and then show up for the memorial.  Then maybe we should go back to DC and shop at Potomac Wines.

I sense that any toasting that goes on at our family gathering might go like this...  at least if I end up doing it, which I won't, because no one cares about what I have to say.

Actually, I plan to take it easy on the booze this year.  I really just want to put in my obligatory appearance and get the hell out of there, hopefully unscathed.

I realize that certain family members may actually see this blog post.  If they do and are offended, I don't really care.  I've about had it with this shit.  I feel a little like Groucho Marx...  I refuse to join any group that would have me as a member.


Ebola has everyone in a tizzy...

My husband now works for Africa Command, aka AFRICOM.  He says that Ebola is the number one topic at his job.  Here in Germany, a number of people are being treated for the deadly virus, though none that I know of are in the Stuttgart area.  And of course, back in Texas, Ebola is all over the news since Eric Thomas Duncan, a Liberian who showed up at a Dallas hospital infected with it, was hospitalized and later died.  Two nurses who cared for him have now tested positive with the virus and have been moved to hospitals in the United States better equipped to deal with them.

Seems like every generation has its disease du jour.  In the 80s, it was AIDS.  People were terrified of it.  I remember having to watch films about it in school, all about how it's transmitted and risky behaviors associated with contracting it.  There were some excellent movies of the week made about the AIDS epidemic.  Molly Ringwald even starred in one.

In the early 2000s, people were worried about anthrax, thanks to the efforts of certain bioterrorists.

Before AIDS, there was polio and tuberculosis and the plague...  Now we have Ebola, along with Marburg, deadly viruses that are killing many people in Africa.  Now the disease is spreading abroad and people in the United States are all up in arms about it.  You don't hear so much about AIDS anymore.

I thought this was a pretty funny graphic...

While I understand why people are afraid of Ebola, I think in the grand scheme of things, we have much bigger fish to fry.  The chances of getting Ebola are fairly slim, especially if you take precautions.  Still, I would probably be a little freaked out if I were on a plane with someone with Ebola...


These people on a U.S. Airways flight certainly were freaking...

Given that we have to fly to the United States next month, I'm wondering what kind of nightmare effect the Ebola virus is going to have on travel in the coming weeks.  Hopefully, it won't suck as much as it might.  Truth be told, I wish we could just stay in Germany.  Nevertheless, I'm sure I will have a lot to write about when we go back to the States.  Hopefully, I won't get so annoyed that I end up in trouble with the authorities.