Making Sense of the 2012 Presidential Election(MY Perspective)

“I’m not spinning this opinion, that’s just what I think.” ~Governor John Kasick of Ohio.

Excuse me? So you’re not spinning or changing the way your interpreting the pre-election polls but that’s just in YOUR opinion? That’s a bunch of bullshit, please excuse my language. How can you get on CBS News, and say that line with a straight face when you know that sometimes actual intelligent people(from time to time) watching this program.

Well here’s my opinion on the matter. I’m not usually a big fan of political opinions, I think most of the advertising and commercials you see on TV, or even news correspondence shows, are about as skewed as my view on capital punishment. I think anyone who’s been proven guilty of murder, meaning they got caught red-handed with real physical evidence, should be hung, electrocuted, given lethal injection or burned at the stake for their crimes. What’s wrong with an eye for an eye? If it’s good enough for the Bible, it’s good enough for me.

So you can see how biased I am when it comes to the topic of capital punishment. That’s exactly what I feel’s going on every time I see another anonymous face in a bad suit get in front of the camera. I don’t believe 99% of what’s said. I try to be less pessimistic, to look at what’s being said with an open-mind, but I find it increasingly hard to swallow each side’s warped views on subjects such as the national economy.

It seems like everyone has their own personal agenda when it comes to telling their version of the truth.

In terms of what has happened to the economy, I don’t need to watch television to know how it impacts my family and community. Some of my friends have lost their jobs while others still have their job but are getting paid a lot less. What I want to know is why both sides are spending hundreds of millions of dollars on advertising and campaigning, instead of giving that money back to the community. If you really cared about the people without jobs, starving on the street, why don’t you donate that money to a charity or relief fund, instead of making another terrible commercial? Trust me, if my wife ever comes back from the mailbox with a check from the government in hand, whoever’s in office at the time is getting my vote. Period.  Don’t think of this as a bribe, just in case your new to the business of getting or giving bribes. Just earmark it as reparations, money paid out to my family in return for my ancestors getting forced to build railroads so that chefs and homosexuals can live in San Francisco today.

I like to consider myself as a relatively conservative Democrat. Some people might categorize me slightly on the other side but you get the point. I’m pretty close to being right in the middle. This gives me a  fairly unique perspective on many of the main topics of battle between both sides. I’m all for gun-control but also believe that every US “citizen” has a right to protect their home. With an automatic weapon.  I’m pro-choice, I’m against increasing government regulation, I think we do need a strong military but less police at home. Not that I’m against having police, if you think human rights are bad in the US, I dare you to commit crimes in China.

If you’ve ever watched the show ,”Locked-up Abroad,” you know exactly what I’m talking about. People get shot in the back of the head, or just flat-out disappear in China. I know this because some of my family members are card-carrying Triad members while others have just spent time in a Chinese jail. Due process, right to representation, regular visitation, these are just a few things that do not exist in many other countries. Sometimes we take these things for granted, especially when we’re too busy worrying about the economy, unemployment or real-estate value across the US.

Mitt Romney would have us believe the economy was just fine before Barack Obama came to office. Unemployment did not exist, Wall-street and US Auto didn’t need government assistance, and rainbows come from a Leprechaun’s pot of gold. I’m not a lawyer, lobbyist or politician, meaning I don’t know left from right when it comes to making government policies. I’m certainly not an expert when it comes to pointing fingers at whether Republicans or Democrats are to blame for most of the countries woes. What I do know is that these problems were not created by the current residents of the White House. If I had to guess where most of these problems began, I would have to say President George W. Bush is the first thing that comes to mind.

The last time I can honestly say I thought things were going well in this country was during the Clinton Administration. The major defining moment of his two terms in office is definitely not what he did with Monica Lewinsky. I don’t really care if he’s involved in extracurricular activities, as long as he was looking out for the rest of the country. Which he did admirably. His two terms in office were some of the best from an economic standpoint in US history. Bill Clinton balanced the national budget so well that instead of cutting the deficit, we actually had a surplus. We were a world leader in technology and education, the stock market reached an all-time high and real-estate values were never better. Overall things were trending upwards.

What most people are forgetting is that between the Clinton years, usually considered good, and Obama’s presidency, so-so at best, there was only one other president! President George Bush the 2nd was the cause and reason for many of the problems we see today. During his two terms in office we went to war twice, the economy went into the tank, and the US experienced one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in history. Bush was a Republican, just like Mitt Romney, even though both blame all the problems we face today on…

You guessed it, the Democrats.

Even though things aren’t going as well as I want, I think equal blame can and be applied to Congress and the Senate. Currently the floors of Congress and the Senate are mostly Republicans while President Obama’s a Democrat. Every time the legislative branch and executive branches of government are controlled by opposing political parties, they usually deny the goals and laws of their opponents. Even though this’s meant to keep any branch of government from becoming too powerful, in reality it usually just keeps all of them from doing ANYTHING. If you want to blame anyone for keeping Obama’s measures, either right or wrong, from happening, blame them.

More than anything else, I think the most important characteristic of a Presidential candidate is his or her conviction. To stand for something is more important than pandering to get you elected into office. Even if you don’t like the current president, if you think his opinion is full of crap, it’s important to know that he will stand behind his beliefs. Mitt Romney has gained my everlasting enmity for changing his opinion throughout his campaign. I don’t know exactly what either candidate will do, therefore all I have to go by his word. How can we put our trust in anyone who’s so deceptive, lies and manipulations flowing from his mouth like poisoned honey?

Would you rather sign an agreement with someone who promises to give you 100 dollars and does exactly that or someone who promises to give you a 1000 dollars and changes their mind at the last moment? Which person sets a better example for our children? What if that same person told you he would actually give you 2000 dollars as long as you waited another 6 months and later told you he had only promised you 500? Do you feel like that person should represent our entire nation for at least the next four years?

I know I wouldn’t. I’m choosing to vote for Obama specifically for that reason. Given two bad choices, one bad and one worse, I’ve decided to vote for the one that will cause the least damage in the long run. I think both candidates could, in a perfect situation, make this country better than it seems now. The problem is that the perfect situation will never happen.

Our country has a  number of serious problems to face every day. Either candidate will be climbing into the cockpit of a 747 passenger plane running low on fuel and with one engine down due to malfunction. He will have to make some tough decisions in the near future in order to safely get everyone on board to their destination. More than anything else, the most important thing on the line is a better standard of living for our children.

I’ve got two daughters, one blood-related and one that’s adopted. I hope for a number of things in the future. First, I hope the environment is still a beautiful place that they can enjoy when they have children. This will not happen if we continue to warm the planet or kill off hundreds of species each year. I’ve always had a love for sharks, fish and sea mammals, hopefully the Japanese and Chinese do not kill them all off by dumping radiation in the water or massive overpopulation. Secondly, I want to give them some money to spend through sound investments and a home they can either live in or sell. If our economy and real-estate situations continue to deteriorate, pretty soon nobody will have the money to buy a home in the country. Third, I don’t want them to get killed by a suicide bomber or religious fanatics. This will only happen if we make education a priority. Not just science, math or biology ,but religious cooperation. There will never be an understanding between Christians and Muslims if we don’t stop telling everyone they’re going to hell. Just because they do things differently does not mean they are working for the devil or threatening to corrupt your children. Personally, I don’t care what other people are doing, as long as it doesn’t affect my wife or kids.

Finally, I hope that the US continues to survive as a land of the free. Free to read and write whatever I want. Free to marry whoever I want, and free to live my life however I want. This goes back to my view on the police. As long as what I’m doing isn’t threatening or harming anyone else, I really don’t see how it’s anyone else’s business. Freedom and equality are the things that make the United States different from any other country in the world. There are no robed men with their faces covered telling me how my wife can dress. I’m a big fan of her being able to show off her beautiful figure. There are no men wearing dresses and machine guns pressuring me to sift through mud for diamonds, or killing my family for speaking out against the government. As long as I pay for it, my children can go to almost any school they choose, regardless of the fact that they’re Chinese and eat duck feet.

Hopefully in the future, my children can enjoy these things as well.

 

Michael, Wong_83@Hotmail.Com

 

Bear Grylls: Rugged Hero of Masculinity

Like I said, Bear Grylls is my f&$king Hero.

If anyone would be my role model, a father-figure/brother, it would be the host of Man vs. Wild. If you haven’t seen this show, it’s very entertaining, what with the eating bugs, climbing steep cliffs, jumping out of airplanes, and doing push-ups naked in the Arctic!! He’s a cross between James Bond, Joe Rogan and Hercules. If he were even a bit more masculine, he would start making Terminator movies, become the Governator of California, and cheat on Maria Shriver with a fat, ugly Mexican maid.

But I’m getting off topic(Editor’s Note: Author thinks Schwarzenegger is masculine). Here is a premise of every/any episode of Man vs. Wild:

1. Bear appears on-screen.

2. Bear does backflip out of helicopter, with or without a parachute.

3. Bear lands on the ground/in a lake and immediately starts chopping at rotten stumps, looking for the nastiest insects he can find.

4. Bear proceeds to eat said insects, you can hear the crunching and see legs and pincers poking out of his mouth.

5. Bear says with an English accent, “Taste haarible, but this will give me loads of protein.”

6. Bear says, “Let’s move on then.”  Bear proceeds to randomly pick the hardest route possible, usually including jagged icy cliffs, eighty-foot waterfalls, dangerous class-5 rapids, and jumping over a ravine into a ten-story pine tree. (Note to self, do not do ANY of this if I want to survive. Instead, I should eat tons of fucking coconuts, clams, oysters, plant roots; Basically be lazy as shit like Survivorman.)

7. Bear lights signal fire near his newest shelter. He then immediately dives back into the jungle before anyone has a chance to spot the signal fire. What’s the point of the fire???

8. Bear finds random snake. Bear clubs snake with random stick.

8. Sky opens up and dumps torrential rain on Bear, since that’s what happens in tropical rain-forest. No need to worry because Bear can light a fire anywhere, anytime. Dry firewood and fluffy fire-starter can conveniently be found anywhere in the world if your name is Bear Grylls.

9. Bear puts snake on fire, skin still attached. He says it’s for the nutrients but I don’t believe him. I think he likes eating terrible, rubbery snake-meat. He then proceeds to bite right into the snake, skin, spine and all. He says it tastes terrible but he needs all the calories he can get. In actuality, Bear has no taste buds. At least that’s what I think.

10. Bear puts out campfire and jumps over towering

8. Bear does some Parkour, randomly jumping, flipping, sliding and running through loose and dangerous conditions. He then warns viewers that in a ‘survival situation,’ you must be careful. A sprained/broken ankle or other injury is even more serious than usual in a hostile environment. If that’s true, why are you doing Parkour off the edge of a cliff?

9. At some point, Bear comes along a rapidly flowing river. He tells us not to underestimate fast-flowing jungle/glacial rivers and shortly thereafter jumps into the dangerous river. Sometimes he makes a raft out of tin cans, plastic jugs, rusty sheet metal and shoelaces/jungle vines. Inevitably the raft sinks after a short interlude, leaving him flying through some whitewater rapids… filled with rocky outcroppings.

10. He miraculously survives, regardless of what predicament he is in. Towards the end of the show, regardless of what vast uninhabited area of the world he’s in, Bear suddenly spots a Boat/Plane/Helicopter. He makes another signal fire and gets spotted miraculously, all in a few short minutes.

11. Sometimes he doesn’t get picked up, but instead ends his newest adventure by doing something incredibly dangerous, such as outrunning a train and then jumping on the moving train. Another time he makes a raft, rowing his way across arctic waters, regardless of the fact that his raft is leaking, AND he doesn’t know when or where he might be rescued. Again he’s saved in the nick of time.

If this isn’t crazy enough, on top of everything, on various occasions our valiant host puts himself in needless and exceedingly dangerous situations, just to show the viewers what to do, just in case. Just in case of WHAT?! Do you really need to jump out of an airplane and cut off your parachute, thousands of feet in the air, just so you can show us what to do in case? How about jumping butt naked into a frozen lake, swimming under the ice to another hole while struggling to keep his body from freezing to death.

I know it’s television but I’m pretty sure that in any survival situation, I wont be diving into any deep caves looking for bats & bugs to eat. I’m not paddling through shark infested waters on a flimsy bamboo raft, nor am i going to explore a tiny crack in a glacier that might crush or trap me. I’m not going to rappel down the side of a cliff, hanging from a rock that might fall apart at any second. I’m not doing anything dangerous for that matter.

This is my idea of surviving the wild.

I’m sitting my ass down in the first place I deem relatively safe, with access to food and water. I’m setting up a gigantic signal fire, burning down the entire forest while tossing plastic, rubber, and anything else that’s harmful to the ozone. This will create black smoke that will be seen a few hundred miles away. No trees? I’m melting the polar ice caps, creating a massive rock-slide in the mountains… whatever it takes to get myself noticed, even if it means destroying the environment on a global scale.

Oh and as for the wildlife, I’ll look for something edible from the remains of some pristine rain-forest. All those worms, grasshoppers, beetles and snakes charred well-done, killing off any bacteria that might have caused me to vomit or have diarrhea. If that doesn’t work, I’m finding a large branch, turning it into a spear and killing off anything that moves. This includes any possible endangered species that might be living nearby. If this doesn’t get me noticed by the scientific community, I don’t know what will.

If I was an action hero, I might do things differently. I’m not and neither is the average person watching Man vs. Wild.  Recently, there was a fan special episode called Fans vs. Wild. Two fans were randomly chosen, joining Bear on a trip to the Canadian North. One guy was from New York. The other was Minnesota. They were scared to death and only barely completed a few of the easier tasks Bear does on a weekly basis.If the things he does regularly were necessary, it seems like the fans would have died within a few days at most.

Now that’s masculinity at it’s best. Crazy, reckless but so entertaining to watch.

Now I’d be more like Les Stroud from the show Survivorman. Sometimes he eats bugs and does dangerous things, but usually he just sits around a campfire, sleeping a lot and cooking whatever supplies are easy to find. Those vegetable roots and leaves seem a lot more palatable than live scorpions or tarantulas. Instead, Les just plays his harmonica and a tiny guitar on occasion. He probably wouldn’t be able to self-rescue but who the hell cares? His chances of dying of hypothermia, starvation, drowning, getting stung by dangerous insects, injected with venom or falling off the side of a mountain are greatly reduced. Isn’t that more important than looking cool in the wild?

I sure think so.

Here’s my solution, listen carefully. Don’t go to dangerous places by yourself. Make sure you have a guide if you go to the rain-forest. If you have to go somewhere dangerous, alone, make sure you bring plenty of supplies. This includes a very sharp knife, a FEW full water bottles. When packing what you believe is necessary, double it. Add things you can easily carry that you might even think aren’t necessary. Bring lots of non-perishable food like granola bars, peanut butter and spam. Bring something to start fires and even a cheap sleeping bag. This may seem like overkill but trust me, little things like this are the difference between life and death in the wilderness. Even a pint of liquor or a bag of candy can revitalize your morale/spirits.

Actually, just don’t go into the wild. I’d rather watch it on television at home where I’m relatively safe from harm. If I ever feel the need to go camping in the wild, I’ll set up a tent in the backyard. With s’mores.

MSW, Wong_83@hotmail.com

You think I’m gonna stop watching football? You must have lost your MIND.

Yes that’s correct, there’s gotta be something wrong mentally if you think I’m ever going to stop spending my Saturdays, Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays watching anything else besides professional football. Beyond the fact that I work as a bartender, meaning I get to watch a lot of football games on NFL Ticket, some of the reasons that people think we shouldn’t allow our children and other family members to watch or play football are completely ridiculous. “To whom it may concern, I can make up my mind on the dangers of playing a contact sport. I don’t need anyone else’s opinion. Thanks, Michael.” I don’t know about anyone else but it seems like some of the arguments against football are either rhetorical or blatantly obvious:

“They might get a concussion! They might get hit repeatedly!!” Please tell us something I’m not aware of. This is not something new or even unpleasant. Football is a test of physical dominance over the opposing team, a man’s game of forcing one’s opponents to slowly give ground and finally submit to your will. It’s fundamentally ingrained in the most primal part of our psyche, we want to watch and become victorious with the team or teams of our own choosing. I learned this as a child playing pee-wee football, watching the Giants.. and the Redskins.. and finally the Cowboys dismantle the poor Buffalo Bills. It’s not like they don’t know deep down that getting hit in the head repeatedly ‘might’ lead to severe health concerns, concussions, brain aneurysms, etc. and so forth. They knew there was a pretty good chance of lasting injury but still signed a contract to play professional football against other gridiron warriors.

“The game has become faster, the players have become bigger and stronger!” Are you serious? That’s part of the reason why we here in America consider our football as superior to football in other countries! When watching a sporting event, regardless of what sport it is, do we want to watch average people, somewhere in the middle of the pack? More likely you, and I, want to watch the most athletic and dominant human beings on the planet face off in mortal combat. Besides, it really only becomes an issue when the other team isn’t growing at the same or similar rate as your team. As long as every team in the league is comparatively strong and fast, I don’t see any reason to worry. Well, maybe at the college level when you sometimes have Division-1 FBS schools padding their stats by humiliating tiny FCS schools; Look at what happened this week between 18th ranked Oklahoma State vs. Savannah State. Then it might become dangerous, but I’m getting away from the point.

Recently I read an ESPN Insider article about how current safety measures didn’t stop player deaths, only delayed them. In return let me state the completely obvious: NOTHING in the world can stop death from occurring. It’s inevitable, at least it has been for the past 5000 years of civilization. All we can do is, *cough*, delay that from occurring by making sure that we keep our football players from dying instantly from a collision. If we were to follow the logic of how helmets and pads don’t stop concussions, why don’t we quit driving cars and trucks while we’re at it? Seat-belts, air-bags and aluminum crumple zones don’t stop drivers and passengers from dying either. They only prolong the inevitable. While we’re at it, how about we never fly planes because we might fall out of the sky?

Basically it’s all a bunch of propaganda. Activists and people who have lost loved ones want to equate playing football to cigarette smoking or some form of preventable disease. It’s not. Certainly I feel a bit of remorse and sympathy for Junior Seau‘s family but this doesn’t mean that he is different in any way from a king crab fisherman on the Bering Sea or a coal miner in Western Pennsylvania. Every single one of these men work in a dangerous profession and are exponentially more likely to suffer grievous injury or death than say a dentist working in an office building. The difference is that in return for signing a contract to play in the NFL, Junior Seau received a huge sum of money per year.

“How about all of those ex-players that never had a concussion but still are dealing with brain-related issues, such as nightmares, trouble getting out of bed, incontinence, memory loss, etc?” I currently have and probably always will have a problem deciding which of these problems, if any, have football as it’s only deciding factor. Look at Brett Favre, one of the most often hit players in NFL history. Favre played in more games than any other player, period. The iron man of football played for an astonishing 20 seasons at arguably the most dangerous position in the game. The only issues he has shown beyond the normal aches, pains and soreness associated with playing football until your 40 had to do with sexual misconduct, ie. sexting and revealing yourself to young women. I honestly don’t see anything wrong with a dirty old man being a dirty old man. In all fairness, they dropped the charges, most likely due to the fact that the woman was probably a gold-digging whore looking for a fat settlement after sleeping her way up the Jets corporate ladder. Other than that incident and an annoying penchant for retiring and un-retiring, I don’t see anything wrong with Brett Favre’s brain.

Another veteran player who’s doing just fine is Baltimore’s future hall-of-fame linebacker, Ray Lewis. This dominant run-stopper has averaged over 120 tackles a year, or more than just about anyone else over his 16 year career. If there is anyone who should show signs of football-related symptoms, memory loss or other effects of repeated blows to the head, it should definitely be him. I’m pretty sure it’s not because he needs anymore money, unlike other professional players like Terrell Owens.  Even though he has lost a step over the years, his mind remains sharp, his memory and instincts still make him one of the best linebackers in the game.

These are just a few examples of ex-NFL players who have had little to no lasting mental effects from their playing days. Troy Aikman, Phil Simms, Boomer Esiason, Desmond Howard, Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, these men are still in the public spotlight and we as the public would notice if there were anything significantly wrong with their minds. In summary, I don’t see how anyone can consider this “scientific” investigation into proving how football has caused this recent rash of suicides anything beyond your average 17th century witch hunt. How can the media and the scientific community not consider these cases when deciding whether football is inherently dangerous?

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that sometimes people will suffer long-term effects while other times they seem to do just fine. I’m not saying that there is absolutely no correlation between hits and brain injury. I’m certain there is. But as long as we’re blaming football, why don’t we stop everyone from racing cars or fighting in the octagon? Martial arts and race-car driving both expose participants to possible concussions and death but haven’t seen nearly as much negative media coverage as the NFL. How come? Why are members of the scientific community and media outlets crying wolf?

Beyond the reasons listed above, mass hysteria might be playing a part in this unfolding drama. One scientist comes to a finding that some or even of the brains examined from football players have areas of trauma. He tries to find a correlating event and is quick to blame this on football. Other people, including and especially the families and widows of ex-football players are quick to jump on these findings, regardless of their whether or not they’re conclusive, and proceed to file countless lawsuits against the NFL. What they conveniently forget is that the players took on this occupation willingly, just like every other dangerous occupation in the world. They signed the contract and willingly walked on the field.

Let me ask you this: If someone offered you the chance to play professional football along with the requisite fame, fortune and a truck load of money, would you take a chance and possibly become physically injured? It’s not like when its time to sign the contract, the coaches and general manager are saying, ‘Nobody is going to run into you like a 250 pound cannon ball. They would never use their arms and legs to pummel you until you cough up the football. Above all else, there is a 0% chance that you will ever get injured or die.”

On top of everything else, I’m just going to tell you how I feel personally on the subject. If there wasn’t the threat of death or injury, I probably wouldn’t watch football. I relish the spectacle of large-scale conflict. I want to watch the biggest, strongest, fastest men on the planet overcoming their fears to become more than just human. I want them to go on the biggest stage we can construct, overcome every single obstacle and finally earn their rightful place in history. For this I’m willing to pay thousands of dollars a year in television fees, stadium tickets and merchandise, just so that years down the road I can tell my wife and children about that time my team won everything. When the dust settled, they were the only ones left standing.

That’s why every year millions of fans replay every moment of the regular season again and again(I mean why else would there be an NFL network?) and why every playoff game becomes a national holiday in America. The Super Bowl? If sports were considered a religion, professional football would be the 4th largest, behind only the Christians, Muslims and soccer. Actually, I take that back, here in America we know that soccer isn’t even a real sport.

So take as much time as you need to make perfectly safe football helmets, impose heavy fines and mandatory time-off for blows to the head(oh wait, we’ve already done that), just don’t even think about taking away my football. To all the families that are still mourning the loss of their loved ones to brain disease or suicide, I feel your pain, I really do but all the lawsuits and finger-pointing in the world isn’t going to change the fact that your family member willingly chose to risk death and injury, in return for fame, fortune and a solid gold bathtub.

A free ride to a college education, food, clothes and a beautiful home for the wife & kids, money to invest in stocks or businesses, insurance for their aging parents, cars, jewelry and most importantly a bright future. The absolute minimum salary for a rookie in 2012 is $390,000-$465,000/year, not including signing bonuses, roster bonuses or likely to be earned incentives. Add in local, national and even international endorsements such as Direct TV, Nike or Under Armour and I can’t see any reason their families would ever want for anything material. It’s completely on them if they spent everything  they had on Rolex watches, Louis Vuitton bags, Gucci sunglasses Lamborghini sports cars.  I don’t care how they used their money in the past, I only care that these frivolous lawsuits are threatening my favorite weekend pastime.

So yes, you have to be out of your mind if you think anything is going to stop me from watching professional football. It’s gonna take a lot more than a couple player suicides or vegetative-state linemen to stop me from laying on the couch on Sunday, watching my beloved Baltimore Ravens catch assault & battery charges against Ben Roethlisberger.

Kyarnboy, Wong_83@hotmail.com

RIP The Late, Great Billy Mays…and Others!

11:47AM: Can’t believe Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, Ed McMahon and BILLY MAYS all died so suddenly! What is going on, is something in the water or what?! I mean this is just ridiculous. I know it could just be coincidence…but I don’t really believe in coincidences.

Anyways, Billy Mays especially was my favorite out of all of the celebrities mentioned above, with the only possible exception being the younger, black edition of Michael Jackson.

Q: How do you know it’s bedtime at Neverland Ranch?
A: When the big hand touches the little hand…

A little too early?

Probably. It’s just that I know that MJ was totally fantastic and his music to this day still touches me(non-sexually). It’s just that I am in such disbelief that he went above and beyond to destroy his looks, his reputation and his eternal soul. Regardless, he will be missed.

As for the legendary pitchman Billy Mays and his TV-series on the Discovery Channel, “Pitchmen,” I can not express the true feelings of disappointment and sadness brought about due to the sudden ending of his life and career. His rugged beard will be missed, as will his constant use of shouting all the time. *sniff*

Pitchmen is a very good and interesting show for very good reasons. If you get the Discovery Channel and have the chance to watch an episode or two, I suggest you take a peek. Its basically a show about the life of Billy Mays, his family and his partner/friend/fellow pitchman Sully.

OK, to be totally honest in my opinion of the show, I have to say this. Most of the products they see from private inventors, like 95% of them, are completely bogus and utter trash. People seem to want to spend tens of thousands of dollars or more on the worst most half-assed ideas I have ever seen in my life! I don’t even know how that’s possible. I couldn’t spend 10,000 dollars on an invention if my life depended on it. I mean, don’t you think you should really put some thought and planning behind an idea before you decide to go and dump your family’s entire life savings on it?

Evidently not for these people.

As for the few really good ideas I saw, Billy and Sully actually are very good at figuring out what items have selling potential and in what they should do to maximize the advertisement potential. I think they are so good at their jobs becaise they know how to relate to the common man, just looking for a solution to life’s little problems.

Just to name a few of the coolest things I saw over the course of a Pitchmen marathon, there was this crazy-looking circular saw, safe enough for home-use while still having the cutting power to chop a mid-sized sedan in half!!!

The secret to his design was using two circular saw blades instead of one, which spin in opposite directions. This means that even though the saw-teeth are smaller then ones in a traditional circular saw blade, as long as they spin exactly at the same speed they are infinitely safer and are still bad-ass.

Who doesn’t want one of those? The saw was so good that within the first week of the TV-ad coming out, the inventor had already made over 250,000 dollars! With an entire year of advertising, this dude was well on his way to making millions of dollars, settling all the debt he had accrued over years of dumping his savings into this project and most importantly, taking care of his parents. ❤

I think that’s what most people really want, even beyond juat making money. Personally, I know thats what I wold do if I ever made, patented and sold one of my own wacky ideas. It’s gotta be genetic or inherent in our morale code for most people to want to look out for their parents. Unless your a murderer and hacked up your parents for hamburgers…

Back to the subject of Pitchmen and Billy Mays, besides all the normal and good inventions, it was also good to see that Billy really cared about some of the “inventors” he worked with. In one episode, Billy worked with this young man who was working on patenting a vacuum-powered cleaner. This cleaner was kinda like Oxyclean in that you put a liquid on stains and smells but is slightly different in that there’s this hand-pump that you use to suck the liquid back out after it’s finished cleaning the material.

When Billy met up with the young man, he decided that instead of just pitching the product himself, he would help him to become a pitchman while setting up appointments for him at some conventions and on television. Finally at the end of the episode, after seeing the guy progress and show a great deal of potential, Billy personally gave him a private check for 5000 dolllars. This was very different then the way he usually deals with potential clients and shows how great Billy Mays really is.

In summary, Billy Mays may have been rich and enjoyed the luxuries of having a successful career but in no way acted like most people in his tax-bracket. He was a strong-willed, loud, sometimes annoying but always kind-hearted man who still remains a hero to the common people of the US…and perhaps the world. He used his success to help other people manufacture, pitch and sell their ideas/inventions, hopefully making their lives better in the long run.

Most people don’t know how hard it really is for inventions and ideas to get recognized, let alone make any money off even the best products available on the market. It takes true brand-recognition, a trustworthy face, a good sales campaign, years of planning, and most of all a great deal of luck to earn even a single dollar off a pair of mopping slippers. Or a circular saw. Or a vertical grill.

Thanks Billy, for everything you’ve done, and for everyone you inspired to go into sales, marketing or inventing. I will forever remember your Quick Chop, OxyClean, Mighty Putty and Shammy commercials. Hopefully wherever you end up, there will be idiots like myself for you to sell crappy products too. 😀

Mikey, Wong_83@hotmail.com