Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Musician's New Year's resolutions...

1) I will not conduct along with my stereo.
2) I will refer to athletic teams with respect, not as 'the pre-show entertainment.'
3) I will attempt a social life (Whatever that is).
4) I will not drum along with music on my steering wheel.
5) I will not announce the title, movement, or composer of music being played in restaurants or elevators.
6) I will refrain from carrying a mouthpiece with me at all times.
7) I will not refer to my instrument as ‘my baby.’
8) I will not practice and surf the internet at the same time.
9) I will not practice and watch a movie at the same time.
10) I will not practice and talk on the phone at the same time.
11) I will not attempt to set off the doorbell by playing the appropriate frequencies on my instrument for the sole purpose of confusing other members of the household.
12) I will not attempt #11 as it applies to security systems either.
13) I will not include a person’s instrument in their name.
14) I will not sing show tunes in public.
15) At least one of my radio’s pre-sets will be something other than a classical or jazz station.
16) I will not wake up others with ‘Reveille,’ nor will I announce bed time with ‘Taps.’
17) I will try to hold at least one conversation per day that does not, in any way, remotely pertain to music.
18) I will not practice Solfege in the shower.
19) I will acknowledge the fact that nobody else finds Gregorian chants fascinating.
20) I will attempt to become friends with a non-musician.

Monday, December 29, 2008

2008 in review...

Do you remember these names and images from 2008?
(in no particular order of prominence...)

Jennifer Stuczynski: We're very proud of this pole vaulting silver medalist of the summer olympics native of Fredonia, NY.

Barrack Obama: Who really thought he would win? Did he really bowl a 37?

Mitt Romney: Alright already! I know what a Mormon is!!!!

Rudy Giuliani: Who runs for President, but only campaigns in Florida unless you're running for President of AARP?

John McCain: I'm still not convinced he really wanted to win.

Mike Huckabee: This former pastor/guitar player lasted longer than anyone thought he would. Like the 'Energizer Bunny,' he just wouldn't quit!

Hillary Clinton: (is she still a state senator?) Is she on "paid leave" from her NY Senate seat?

Fannie Mae: Sounds like a new musical opening on Broadway.

Freddie Mac: Did you hear McDonald's is going to offer a new 'FreddieMacBurger? It used to have a 1/4 lb. of it only contains a pickle.

Eliot Spitzer: (where's he been hiding?)

Jeremiah Wright: "God Bless America!" Does anyone listen to the sermon?

Plaxico Burress: Never carry a loaded handgun in your pants!

Al Franken: SNL characters really love politics! He may end up being a US Senator. They're still counting the votes!

Tony Rezko: Not everyone will remember this guy!

iPhone: I could never afford one!

Joe Biden: (is he from Pennsylvania or Delaware?)

Sarah Palin: My brother lives in Anchorage, Alaska. They love her up there!

Michael Phelps: Who is Mark Spitz?

2008 Beijing Summer Olympics: Did you watch any TV coverage of the Olympics? I tried to watch Jennifer or table tennis (Yes, I'm a ping-pong nerd!) I couldn't find Jennifer or ping-pong coverage. But I did watch the exciting synchronized swimming and gymnastics coverage (YAWN!).

Tina Fey: Is her name Tina Fey or Sarah Palin?

O.J. Simpson: As Buffalo Bills fans, we remember him as #32...I guess he's got a different number now!

$4.00/Gallon: "What goes up...must come down!"

Video '2008 Year in Review'

This is a great video of the year 2008 year in review.
It's called Uncle Jay explains...

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Prayer of negotiation

Don't Go Too Far

Two men were adrift in an open boat, and it looked bad for them. Finally one of them became frightened and began to pray.

"O Lord," he prayed, “I've broken most of thy commandments. I've been a hard drinker, but if my life is spared now I'll promise never again...”

"Wait a minute, Jack,” said his friend. “Don't go too far. I think I see a sail.”

Saturday, December 27, 2008

The boring church

The Christmas Eve service was over, the couple shook all the hands on the way out the door as they wished everyone a Merry Christmas.

As they drove home, the wife decided to find out what he thought of this wonderful service.

The husband thought for a moment and replied: "you're always trying to get me to go to that boring church. Every time I attend a service, they either sing 'He Arose' or 'Silent Night!'"


Friday, December 26, 2008

Financial woes at the North Pole

The recent announcement that Donder and Blitzen have elected to take the early reindeer retirement package has triggered a good deal of concern about whether they will be replaced, and about other restructuring decisions at the North Pole.

Streamlining was appropriate in view of the reality that the North Pole no longer dominates the season's gift distribution business. Home shopping channels and mail order catalogues as well as the box stores have diminished Santa's market share and Santa could not sit idly by and permit further erosion of the profit picture.

The reindeer downsizing was made possible through the purchase of a late model hybrid Japanese sled for the CEO's annual trip. Improved productivity from Dasher and Dancer, who summered at Harvard Business School, is anticipated and environmental emissions for which the North Pole has been cited and received unfavorable press.

We are pleased to announce that Rudolph's role will not be changed. Tradition is very important at the North Pole. But the following changes are to take place in the 'Twelve Days of Christmas Division...'

The partridge will be retained, but the pear tree never turned out to be the cash crop we thought it would be. It will be replaced by a plastic hanging plant, providing considerable savings in maintenance.

The two turtle doves represent redundancy that is simply not cost-effective. In addition, their romance during working hours could not be condoned. The positions are therefore eliminated.

The French hens will remain intact. Since the election of the new French president, the French products seem to be on the rebound with those on our U.S. list.

The four calling birds will be replaced by an automated voice mail system with a call waiting option. An analysis is underway to determine who the birds have been calling, how often and how long they talk.

The five golden rings have been put on hold by the Board of Elves. Maintaining a portfolio based on one commodity could have negative implications for institutional investors. Diversification into other precious metals as well as a mix of T-bills and high technology stocks appear to be in order.

The six geese-a-laying constitutes a luxury which can no longer be afforded. It has long been felt that the production rate of one egg per goose per day is an example of the decline in productivity.

As you can imagine, the eight maids-a-milking concept has been under heavy scrutiny by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. A male/female balance in the workforce is being sought. The more militant maids consider this a dead-end job with no upward mobility. Automation of the process may permit the maids to try a-mending, a-mentoring or a-mulching.

Eleven pipers piping and twelve drummers drumming is a sample case of the band getting too big. A substitution with a string quartet, a cutback on new music and no uniforms will produce saving which will drop down the bottom line.

Regarding the lawsuit filed by the attorney's association seeking expansion to include the legal profession ("thirteen lawyers-a-suing") action is pending.

Lastly, it is not beyond consideration that deeper cuts may be necessary in the future to stay competitive. Should that happen, the Board will request management to scrutinize the Snow White Division to determine if seven dwarfs is the most efficient number.

More cuts/layoffs may be announced previous to Santa's appearance before the U.S. Congress. We are offering a new line of Santa's North Pole consumer products. They are of the finest quality and are mostly manufactured at the North Pole.

[credit willoughbyontheweb] & Bud

A Politically Correct Christmas

More problems for Santa...

'Twas the night before Christmas and Santa's a wreck!
How to live in a world that's politically correct?
His workers no longer would answer to "Elves",
'Vertically Challenged' they were calling themselves.

And labor conditions at the North Pole
Were alleged by the union to stifle the soul.
Four reindeer had vanished, without much propriety,
Released to the wilds by the Humane Society.

And equal employment had made it quite clear
That Santa had better not use just reindeer.
So Dancer and Donner, Comet and Cupid,
Were replaced with 4 pigs, that sure looked stupid!

The runners had been removed from his sleigh;
The ruts were termed dangerous by the E.P.A.
And people had started to call for the cops
When they heard sled noises on their roof-tops.

2nd hand smoke from his pipe had others quite frightened!
His fur trimmed red suit was called Unenlightened.
His being chubby and Jolly saying his Ho Ho Ho.
Was now taboo, he should be somber and thin as a beanpole.

And to show you the strangeness of life's ebbs and flows,
Rudolf was suing over unauthorized use of his nose.
And had gone on Oprah, in front of the nation,
Demanding millions in over-due compensation.

So, half of the reindeer were gone; and his wife,
Who suddenly said she'd enough of this life,
Joined a self-help group, packed, and left in a whiz,
Demanding from now on her title was Ms.

And as for the gifts, why, he'd ne'er had a notion.
That making a choice could cause so much commotion.
Nothing of leather, nothing of fur,
Which meant nothing for him. And nothing for her.

Nothing that might be construed to pollute.
Nothing to aim. Nothing to shoot.
Nothing that clamored or made lots of noise.
Nothing for just girls. Or just for the boys.

Nothing that claimed to be gender specific.
Nothing that's warlike or non-pacific.
No candy or sweets...they were bad for the tooth.
Nothing that seemed to embellish a truth.

And fairy tales, while not yet forbidden,
Were like Ken and Barbie, better off hidden.
For they raised the hackles of those psychological,
Who claimed the only good gift was one ecological.

No baseball, no football...someone could get hurt;
Besides, playing sports exposed kids to dirt.
Dolls were said to be sexist, and should be passe;
And Nintendo would rot your entire brain away.

So Santa just stood there, disheveled, perplexed;
He just could not figure out what to do next.
He tried to be merry, tried to be gay,
But you've got to be careful with that word today.

His sack was quite empty, limp to the ground;
Nothing fully acceptable was to be found.
Something special was needed, a gift that he might
Give to all without angering the left or the right.

A gin that would satisfy, with no indecision,
Each group of people, every religion;
Every ethnicity, every hue,
Everyone, everywhere...even you.

So here is that gin, it's price beyond worth!!!
May you and your loved ones enjoy Peace on Earth.


Thursday, December 25, 2008

The meaning of Christmas...

And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow
Stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so?
It came without ribbons. It came without tags.
It came without packages, boxes, or bags.
And he puzzled and puzzled 'til his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before.
What if Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store?
What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?

~ Theodore Giesel

[selected from The Quote Garden]

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Restructuring at the North Pole...

You've read the numerous headlines about the financial woes of the auto manufacturers, banks, insurance companies, cities, etc. But, did you realize that there are financial problems at the North Pole also?

Not only are Santa, Mrs. Claus and Santa's elves experiencing financial difficulty, but they're trying to prepare for global warming. These are difficult times!

Plus Santa has experienced some recent unexpected legal problems.

Since Santa will be returning from his overnight trip tomorrow morning, he will then be posting some of his restructuring plans for the North Pole, Inc. This will be in preparation for his visit to capital hill in Washington where he will be making his case for financial aid from the U.S. government.

Tomorrow, we will be posting some of his downsizing plans on our blog.

Stay tuned for a partial list of some of these painful changes.

But in the meantime, Merry Christmas to you and yours!